The Shape of Water

Went to see 'The Shape of Water' today with Nymaz. Been looking forward to seeing this since it was announced. It was an amazing film. Like his 'Crimson Peak', which was a mystery that happened to have ghosts in it, this was a love story that happened to have a fish person in it. The only monsters in it were people. The two most emotive characters don't speak verbally, there's sign language, but as much of the dialog was in body posture, head tilts, stuff like that. There's even a couple of musical numbers, one of which was probably my favorite scene in the movie. The bad guy isn't a cartoon villain, there's a logic to his actions and he's obviously a product of his career. Everything meshes and it plays out near perfect. Well, bad things happen to a cat, which I could have passed on. But it is understandable in context. And yes, there is fishperson sex. And weird straight people sex, and lonely person sex. Might not be to your tastes, but I don't think it's that big a deal. Also, keep your eyes out for little easter eggs and references. Oh yeah, I wouldn't call it Lovecraftian, definitely weird though. Long story short, if you like del Toro, and want a movie with a very positive message about like and love and being 'human', go see it. 5 out of 5 flared gill slits.

Weekend of Electronic Entropy

This has been the weekend of electronics being a pain in the ass. Come home Thursday night, and my media PC is acting wonky. Can't reach the media drive via NFS. Verified the drive is readable, and NFS is running on Dagon. So I assume something got stuck, NFS is annoying that way, and reboot. Come up with a failed OS drive. Well, damn. Ok, I'd planned to swap it out with Shoggoth, my local network server that doesn't do much. Ok, so I spend my Friday off getting things moved around and hooked up. To find out sound doesn't work. Googling got me either 'use a USB sound card' or 'Sound works fine'. So I go and order a USB sound card that supports Linux with 1 day delivery. Which gets delayed Saturday, so...no media PC. I've watched a bunch of movies on my multi-region bluray player (which I had a frustrating time getting to change region til I remembered the remote control pattern).

I also planned to listen to audiobooks. My normal way to listen is on The Shining Trapezohedron (my phone), using a bluetooth speaker. So of course, what starts having issues ? Yep, the speaker is in flake mode. I verified it wasn't the phone using my bluetooth headset. *grumbles* Again, I have a work around (Audible's website), but it's bloody annoying. I like the bluetooth speaker, because I can wander around the apartment with it while doing chores. Feh.

Also, besides Amazon shipping fail, the post office has delayed two other packages due in Saturday. *sigh* But at least they managed to deliver a book of books from a Kickstarter I funded. Yay new book smell.

Otherwise, it's been a pretty lousy weekend. Not dreaming well, stressed and anxious. The holiday foo is getting to me pretty darn hard. Just have to get through the next 4 weeks. Hoping to have a better 2018. I can dream, after all.

Vulpine, what is best in life ?

Yes, two posts in one week. Don't panic, everything is under control. It's been a pretty shitty week, and today followed the trend. But rather than vent about today, I want to talk about various good things I didn't think to post last time.

  • I managed to pay off my car a couple of months early. Yay new year and new budget.
  • I've gone almost 2 weeks without sugar in Château Innsmouth. No soda, no candy, no cookies. I'm a horrible snacker, so why keep temptation in the house? I've had a couple of sugar drinks while out and about, but it's hard to say no to cherry limeades.
  • I received a metric oodle of ebooks from a Kickstarter I backed, the dead tree editions will be here soon. So much Mythos.
  • Paul Naschy Fest is chugging along, on film 8 of 10. I'm really enjoying these, high quality transfers, cheesy horror, and lots of fun
  • 2 new Dark Adventure Radio episodes in hand. 'Rats in the Walls' and 'Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar'.
  • Also have an audiobook edition of my favorite S.M. Stirling novel, 'The Peshawar Lancers'.
  • I've joined the 21st century, and did my first online grocery order. Worked out perfectly, but some of the items from Amazon are so/so in quality. Not sure I'll keep using it or not though. Also going to try ordering groceries for curb pickup, see how that works.
  • It's the weekend, 2 days away from the databases from heck

    So that's 8 good things. Nice change from complaining about my mood. With that I'm going to call this a post. Night all.
  • The Thanks Giveth, The Thanks Taketh Away

    Tomorrow is Thanksgiving here in the US. But I can't say the last week and a half has made me terribly grateful. Carcosa Corp had a reduction in force. My manager and his manager are gone, and much worse, one of my best friends (and coworker) also got cut. There's also a major reorg in the works. But not much in the way of details, other than I still have a spot on the org chart for next year. To say I'm unhappy is a major understatement. People got decent severance packages from what I heard, and I don't see any of the people I know being out of work long. But I've got a case of survivor's guilt, plus not knowing what I'll be really doing in 2 months, plus trying to keep up with everything going on, and I'm a bundle of nerves. Spent most of this week dealing with Sybase database issues that I really don't know, though I'm learning a bunch on the fly. Working on Black Friday, where I'll be doing a crash course in database migration.

    On top of that, I've been feeling lousy, not so much allergies as I think my BP meds are starting to have less affect on me. I'm going to the doctor next week for a med check/blood work. So I'll ask about things. My BP cuff says I'm about the same as always, but for all I know I'm using it wrong. Pshrink visit showed my bp as higher than usual. Speaking of physical foo, I sat wrong on my chair, and it slid out from under me and I hit the floor. No damage. other than it ratcheted my anxiety up (and gave my elbow a good whack). Depression is way up there too, I really need to stop looking at the news.

    So, that's all the bad...or at least all the bad I can stomach writing about right now. So what's good? Well I invested in some blurays, 2 collections of Paul Naschy flicks (king of Spanish horror films). Most of which I've never seen, so I'm currently having a binge of his flicks. Definitely better than watching Sybase databases. Also lots of good books out, including a few signed books *waves at Pete Rawlik and Sam Gafford*. My friends, as always, are awesome, and I've gotten a lot of critter time recently. And I'm at least having less anxiety dreams. Oh yeah, and in joining the 21st century, I had my first grocery delivery. Not sure if I'll do this on a regular basis, there's a lack of some of my staples. But compared to going to the store 2 days before turkey day, it was amazing.

    Long weekend plans? Tomorrow is sleeping in, then afternoon meal with Amythest and clan, staying as long as my cope lasts. Friday is another day at the office, with the above mentioned database migrations. Friday night will probably be more Naschy flicks. Saturday is the annual Soup and Movie fest, also at Amythest's place. Sunday will be chores and recovery and trying to find the tentacles to deal with the upcoming work week. Since I'm working on Black Friday, I'm off work the next Friday. Probably will be mostly a down weekend, vegging and such.

    So that's the state of the fox. Feeling a little better getting some stuff down on virtual paper. Going to watch some more Eurohorror then head to bed. Night everyone.

    Sleep? What the hell is that?

    Rough week. I haven't slept a solid, or even semi-solid night since the weekend. Patching prod Tuesday generated 2 overnight calls, and a similar issue got me called on Wednesday/Thursday night. Last night I didn't get called, however I woke up anyway at 3am. Tried to go back to sleep and failed. Got up around 5am, futzed around, then got a little more sleep. Then I got up, got ready for work, got to work...found out I'd left my badge at home. Without my badge it's kind of difficult to get around Carcosa Corp, so after I drove home to get it, I said screw it and worked from home.

    Last night was rough. Finishing up the non-customer facing production servers. And I had more problems with the last 4 servers than the almost 100 other servers. I ended up arguing with Nagios because the new version added weird example templates, creating phantom hosts that obviously were offline. Our cacti install just broke utterly, new version will not work with the old database. And since I didn't want to spend half the night fixing mysql issues, I rolled back to the snapshot I made before patching. (I had a bad feeling, and oh I am so glad I listened to it). *shakes head*

    I'm really exhausted right now. I took a nap after I logged out of work, well mostly I just lay there and listening to the white noise generator (beach sounds). Got up again, listening to The Black Stone right now, but I'll be going back to bed soon. This weekend is a social get together tomorrow, and Sunday is probably going to see 'Murder on the Orient Express'. Plus the chores and stuff. Oh, in book news, I picked up something special. Many years ago, my uterine sibling was given a copy of 'The Collected works of Edgar Allan Poe' by a teacher. It was this epic gothic looking book, printed in the mid 20's. It really does look like something you'd read aloud from to summon 'something'. I 'borrowed' it for years, was how I got into Poe, right before I discovered Lovecraft. I eventually gave it back but I always remembered how cool it was. A few weeks ago, I decided to go hunting. All I remembered was the cover, and the approximate time it was published. After a few google searches I had the publisher, and looking on Amazon I found a copy for $20. Needless to say, I bought it. It came in today. And it's in amazing shape for a 90 year old book. Spine is pretty tight, no loose pages, a little browning, but all in all it's just about perfect. So it's sitting with some other treasured books of mine on my desk, next to my epic fancy editions of HPL, and other weirdness.

    So that's this week in Vulpineland. Now, I'm going to fiddle around with some things, and probably make it an early night. Ciao.

    Server Patching from Hell.

    Oh by Dagon's scaly scrotum, tonight's last few server patches were more trouble than all the other servers I've done this round. Nagios upgrade broke our nagios setup, adding hosts in templates and other goofy crap. I was able to fix that without issues, but still some minor stuff is goofy, will be working on that tomorrow. Cacti updated to some rather big change, which the database setup for it could not handle. Rolled that one back (yay listening to the voice in my head saying 'this one is trouble'), or I'd be up half the night teaching myself mysql magic to fix it. I'm calling it done. Going to eat a snack, read a book, and go to bed.

    And if I get called again tonight...well, I won't scream at anyone, but I'll be a tad pointed to the people involved.

    Cthulhu grant me more dreams of fencing, and/or squidgirls, or even the epic dream bookstore I can't seem to find in real life.

    Night hominids.

    A week of ups and downs (the ups)

    And since we covered the downs a minute ago, here's what's up in Château Innsmouth. Work is going good, busy but good. I'm actually working tonight, prepatch work on our Windows servers before the Corporate Windows group does the actual updates. Unlike last time, I'm probably not staying up to 3am just in case. It's just easier for me to get up early tomorrow and check things. I've also gotten most of my usual chores done. I'm reading a bunch of good books, 'Bond: Unknown' probably the purest form of Spies vs Shoggoths. A history of Pyrrhus of Epirus (where we get the term Pyrrhic victory, among other books. I've been bouncing between subjects, a small lack of focus. So many books, so little time.

    (Time passes...)

    Chores are done, well done for today. Need to go to the store tomorrow, and I need to put up the dishes once they dry out. Went to pick up some dinner, came home, snagged a quick shower and going for classic Vincent Price movie, since my other picks today were less than spectacular. But I can always count on Vincent Price, especially in period horror flicks.

    Windows snapshots are being taken. Not sure what I'm going to do when it's done, and 'Tomb of Ligera' is done. Maybe another classic horror flick, or hide in one of my books. I don't know. Probably go for the movie. Well a movie.

    Not much in the way of plans for upcoming stuff. Friend's spawning day party next weekend, but that's about it. Next year I'm hoping to make some changes. A trip or two, probably moving out of Château Innsmouth 1.0 to a bit bigger (and better laid out) apartment. Been snagging pictures of ideas, floorplans and study/library shots. Of course, to be honest, I just need a place for a bed, a closet for clothes, kitchen, bathroom, etc and a desk for the shoggoth wrangling, the rest will probably be bookshelves. That's my style, Late Biblomaniac.

    And on that note, I'm running out of words. So I'll catch you next time. *waves a tentacle*

    A week of ups and downs (the downs)

    Well this week was a lot more ups and downs. Lets get the downs out of the way. It's official, I'm not doing the magnetic treatment, seems that 'we figured out the insurance problem' actually meant 'oh what the hell, lets try again.' How am I doing about that? Resigned. I intentionally kept my hope to a minimum. Pshrink visit went ok, all things considered I'm handling things alright, so same meds, come back after the holiday season, unless stuff changes. Which given the silly season is their busiest time. I also had a case of unexpected sadness earlier this week. Got a wild hair to look up where my uncle's name was from, and I found his obituary from 2011. I knew he'd passed, I thought I'd mourned when it happened. But seeing his face and hearing about the good he did in his community, well I started crying. And the next day I wrote something about it on Facebook, and the tears started up again. Guess between losing my friend's dad, and seeing my uncle well, opened up the waterworks. Otherwise it's been anxiety and feeling down a good chunk of the time. I'm rather down right now. News, worries about people I care about, and my anxiety spiking up randomly. I was going to try to work on cleaning up some of the clutter in the the areas that are out of sight...but I don't have the tentacles for it, so I'll do it another weekend.

    Coming very soon, a more positive post.

    No title for this post, it’s from the peasant class.

    Not been a good fortnight and change. We lost a friend of mine's father last week, and it's been hard. Not just seeing someone I care about hurting, but I had my own relationship with him. And I really haven't had much time to sit and process. I also have a feeling the TMS treatment is back off the table, as all I've heard from my insurance was 'denial, review, silence' and from the provider 'silence'. I have another pshrink visit on Wednesday, which means it's been a month since this got put back on the table. At least I'm not also trying to go off seroquel as well at the same time. Allergies still suck. Not much to say about that though, Texas is hell, and we're coming up on cedar fever season.

    There are positives in life. Work has been busy, between database issues, patching, and schedules with my fellow admins. Averaging about 10 hour days, but that's ok. I've worked harder for people I like less. My boss is talking about sending me off for database training (probably virtually), in part due to the issues we had. Which, given my general lack of knowledge about databases would be good. Books are still my friends, even if my ability to focus is all over the place. I've started a bunch of books, but only finished a few, mostly those of favorite authors. On the movie front, I did go see the latest 'Thor' this last weekend. It's a very funny movie, the kind I wish more comic book movies would be like. (that being said, 'Black Panther' doesn't look to have a bunch of comedy, but boy does it look awesome).

    No big plans coming up. Mostly I just want to take care of myself and my friend, and see what comes up after the New Year. And on that note, I'm going to call this a post. Catch you all later.

    And now…the post.

    Well, when last I posted, I'd had a stressful week. The weekend before my spawning day was alright, had Egyptian food with Amythest and Nymaz, then stayed up massively late for work. Worked from home on my spawning day, still did stuff done. First year since 2000 that I didn't make a blog post on my Spawning Day. Felt weird. Work is keeping me busy, occasionally stressful but not bad.

    This weekend was vegging at home on Friday night, Saturday being social with two sets of friends and a Half Price book raid. Today is...less perky. Sunday blahs + anniversary of Dad's passing = a day I really didn't want to do much. And I really haven't, store run this morning, repairing the Wordpress install today. I'll probably get the dishes done, and the bed made. But my nemesis, the laundry pile will stay probably. I think I have clothes enough for work...

    In geek news, I moved my various domains' email to Google. Been having issues with mail getting blocked, and I'm tired of arguing with mail providers. So yeah, paying Google to manage most of it for me. Yeah, I know, I lose major geek points, but geeking has lost some of it's sparkle lately, since I do it all day long at work. Oh well. I still run mostly my own DNS and website foo still.

    Still don't have details on how the TMS is going to work, need to give them a call tomorrow. Have a number of other things I need to deal with, but nothing that's an OMG emergency. Lots of books, finding new history foo to dive into, plus lots of Lovecraftian fiction, with a bunch more coming out in November. So many books...yay for me. Ok, calling this a post and going to go make some early dinner. Laters everyone.