Friday, August 28, 2009

New Word: fixel

Fixel: noun. a fixture element. The fix for a problem the requires the least possible amount of work. Sometimes fixels do not actually solve the problem, but give the appearance of having solved the problem, at least for long enough time that the responsible party can flee the scene.

Many common fixels involve the liberal application of duct tape, or wood putty, or baby wipes, or all three simultaneously. IT personnel often use the word "workaround" as a synonym for fixel.


Saturday, August 22, 2009

A Failure of Truth in Advertising.

I have a hard time taking anyone with this license plate on their car seriously, as the residents of the state of New Hampshire failed to collectively off themselves at any time between 2001 and 2009.


Sunday, August 9, 2009

Further Conversations with Sidereal Jr.

In which an alternate explanation for the disappearance of the dinosaurs is posited.....

S. Jr.: Daddy, are the dinosaurs all gone from the Earth?

S.: Yes, they are.

S. Jr.: Are they dead?

S.: Yes, they died a long, long time ago.

S. Jr.: Why are they all dead?

S.: I don't know. Maybe they got sick?

S. Jr.: Or maybe they all went to the Sun!

He's at the forefront of both astronomy and paleology!


Thursday, August 6, 2009

Books I Read in June

Okay, so July was pretty much a loss as far as blogging goes. But at least I was active in ways that were financially rewarding. And I managed to do a lot of reading. But first I need to cover June's reading list, so here goes, along with the usual comments of varying degrees of snark:

Poison Sleep -- T.A. Pratt: 6/3/09 - 6/4/09

Good book. Bad dreams become real as living nightmares walk the streets. The Forces of Good must stand together to defeat Evil once and for all. No, wait a minute, that sounds like our world, from January 2001 to January 2009.... At least in our world the Forces of Good finally triumphed.

Dead Reign -- T.A. Pratt: 6/5/09 - 6/6/09

Death comes calling, literally. And what's worse, he wants Marla Mason to return his magic Swiss Army Knife of Doooooom! But without it she can't be the top dog sorceress anymore. Plot ensues.

Spell Games -- T.A. Pratt: 6/7/09 - 6/8/09

Marla's dead beat brother comes looking her up wanting to patch up their bad relationship. And the fact that she's now fabulously wealthy has nothing to do with it, no sirree. Meanwhile, back at the ranch, the fungus god of the Pacific Northwest (ahh, that explains Starbucks.....) decides to invade Marla's city in search of magic mushroom spores.

Daemons are Forever -- Simon R. Green: 6/9/09 - 6/11/09

Number two in Green's series about Eddie Drood, magical secret agent whose family has been protecting us from Lovecraftian horrors for centuries, while also exploiting us lesser mortals. Despite the fact that all the entries in this series so far have been puns on the titles of James Bond novels, they have absolutely none of the feel of Bond, at least the movie version.

The Sharing Knife: Passage -- Lois McMaster Bujold: 6/12/09 - 6/15/09

I get the feeling that I read this book back in third grade, when we covered settling of the Midwest USA, only back then it didn't have a 60 year old guy shacking up with an underage girl.
If you liked the first two, you'll probably like this one.

Ragamuffin -- Tobias Buckell: 6/19/09 - 6/22/09

More good space Jamaicans only this time they are versus fewer evil space Aztecs, but have some eeevil space Chinese to be versus against. It is a follow-up to Crystal Rain, and has some of the same characters, but they show up only about halfway through the book. Ragamuffin really expands Buckell's future history, and it has a pretty unique feel to it. Recommended.

Sideways in Crime -- ed. Lou Anders: 6/25/09 - 7/6/09

An anthology of mostly good alternate history crime stories. In some cases the term "crime story" is pretty loosely defined, but that's okay. I heard somewhere that the publishers went ahead with this book only after shooting down the companion book: Sideways in Dentistry.

So, seven books in June. Not bad. Of the seven, the first four were read on my Kindle. The first three of those were purchased directly as a result of reading the first book in the series as a free e-book. Ragamuffin was also bought because I enjoyed the first book for free. Sadly in the case of Ragamuffin, books 1 and 3 can be had in e-book form, but not book 2. But four sales made directly as a result of free e-books, in June alone. I hope all your marketing people are taking notes.....