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Errantry: Novak's Journal
...Words to cast/My feelings into sculpted thoughts/To make some wisdom last
Personal: The Unforeseen Problem in the Rename; Meg and Julie; Bob 
22nd-Sep-2007 02:37 pm
Tell me more....  June 2007
Pain in the butt: I thought very carefully about changing the name of my LiveJournal account, reading the fine print very carefully to make sure that I wouldn't lose any of the comments and such that I had accrued over the years, as I figure to use this journal format until well into my eighties. Everything would be there, it seemed, and so I made the switch. Yesterday, though, I was trying to figure out why my page seemed sluggish and filling out entirely when I realized: all my photography links to my Photo Album/Scrap Book were encoded to "novak_freek" and would have to be individually switched to the name of the new account.


Mercifully, the format of Netscape's "Find" function that that become mostly the work of a click, as far as searching and highlighting the correct text for deletion, but it was a certain amount of plodding, with more to do, of course. But LJ let me go back 15 months in the regular format, and that let me catch a lot of the key entries, particularly such long travelogues as my Geneva, Venice, and Florence trip last year.

Meg and Julie were over Thursday night, opting for a quiet night in to talk rather than going out somewhere in town. We just ended up drifting into the kitchen and sitting around the table together with a bottle of 2003 Villa Calcinaia Chianti Classico, some dark chocolate, and a mix of chocolate chip and Danish butter cookies. It was a very casual and light evening of conversation. The biggest topic of the night was their curiosity about my upcoming high school reunion. Reunions in general, the looking-back perspective at high school, and then my high school experience in particular were all opened up. They especially started tearing through my old yearbooks with glee, with particular attention to hair and clothing styles. Having friends who were born in the eighties, and who mostly know that time through television-watching and theme parties is funny from my side of the equation, too. I shared a few key stories with them that they'd not heard, like the whole senior year saga with Tim. The strains of friendship in a variety of forms was something that we all knew something about, and everyone shared thoughts from various struggles of that sort from the last year. Julie tried to peg the social status of people from the yearbook photos and, sort of interestingly, was only able to run about 50% accuracy at best. Meg pegged Lisa in one guess as my primary high school crush and I entertained the two of them with stories of the bizarre and unspoken strain of geekish competition between me and Tim as we would both take her out on various social occasions. I got points from the girls for taking her to the Beach Boys concert, but pretty much lost them for going to McDonald's for food, afterward, as was utterly just.

Bob got hold of me yesterday, with Friday being his last night in town before heading home to Michigan, and wanted to know if I was available to hang out. Unfortunately, I wasn't working very well, as I'd woken up with my tonsils flaring up again. It was time to give in and make a medical consultation and so I'm starting up antibiotics. So I was achy enough to be crap at writing, but not so sick that I'd pass on socializing. (And even I cannot tell whether that's rationalization....) So he invited me to a chess rematch from our last engagement. This photograph is from last year, but it was pretty much the same scene, except that this time we met at dusk, and that the jacket I brought (the one I'm wearing in the userpic, in fact) is one that I gave to Bob because it really fits him much better, and because I was so under-using it because I had misjudged the fit. He doesn't wear coats of the sort so much, although he agreed that it's always good to have such, professionally and socially, and so I gave it to him on the condition that he soon take Carmen out to dinner wearing it, so that it can contribute to the wooing of his wife. Also in contrast to the photo, this time we had a bottle of a Charles "Two Buck Chuck" Shaw Shiraz he had bought from Trader Joe's. (Less sweet than the cheap Australian Shirazes we've bought, like the Alice White. Or maybe it just tasted that way to me because my sense of taste has gone all screwy with this infection.) It was dim and secluded enough with the hedge that we had no bother from Security on that issue, and on a largely-empty stomach, I was much sloshed by the time we finished. I won after a long match when he pressed an attack with his queen, taking a rook of mine (he already had done well in taking both my knights and a bishop), but in doing so left a position unthreatened to which I was able to move my queen and checkmate him in one unexpected move (for the both of us). We caught one another up on the news that we hadn't shared at dinner at the Lloyds', more of the personal stuff appropriate to a quiet night. A huge group of students, who turned out to be InterVarsity members, were playing what turned out to be a robust game of Capture the Flag on that half of campus. I called a few of them over to find out what they were playing and we ended up talking with a new grad student in English who turned out to be a Tolkien scholar, among other foci. I just thought it was fun to see a large group of undergrads who could dream up a fun Friday night not dependent on getting smashed.

Up early this morning, mostly dealing with puttering projects and some cleaning. I took a bit of a walk around 9 or 10 and the air was just slightly crisp, enough to pass muster as a symbolic first day of autumn. I've got 1200 or 1300 negatives from 1989 through 2003 ready to be converted into digital files, as I've been wanting to get all my photography in digital format. But in the meantime, back to the dissertation.
22nd-Sep-2007 09:51 pm (UTC)
as I figure to use this journal format until well into my eighties

Cor. Boggling thought.

Having friends who were born in the eighties, and who mostly know that time through television-watching and theme parties is funny from my side of the equation, too.

It's funny from my side of the equation? *ponders*

Up early this morning

Define "early"
22nd-Sep-2007 10:05 pm (UTC)
What I really like about LiveJournal is that the conversational/friends aspect of it keeps me journaling, and I have big holes in my memory where my own history is fuzzy because I didn't journal for those years. The option to have private entries gives you the full flexibility of the genre, I figure....

Um. Yes, that was probably worded sloppily. They're finding simply the 80s themselves funny, and I'm finding their amusement funny. It's not a balanced equation.

Um... that I was working by 8am? I know, that's "average" for most people, as it was for me when I taught high school, but those generally aren't my hours anymore....
22nd-Sep-2007 10:26 pm (UTC)
I'm with you on the social aspect of LJ, though I've found myself slipping these days into "updating" Facebook more regularly. Facebook "status updates" are of course way more superficial and ephemeral, but have the immediacy of being the networking site that is a vital part of my "real life" -- my advisors, colleagues, and friends from all points in my life are gathered there. It's been a really useful part of negotiating the shifting relationships with my advisors in particular, as I'e perhaps mentioned.

I digress.

They're finding simply the 80s themselves funny, and I'm finding their amusement funny. It's not a balanced equation.

Yeah, that definitely puts the power in your court. Funny, around here it's a little differently balanced -- or maybe it's just me.

That I was working by 8am?

Yeah, that's when I start working -- in fact, I've pushed my comps to 8.30 AM from 10 AM precisely because I've managed to turn myself into a morning person in the last few months. I've started to call 7.30 "sleeping in"...
22nd-Sep-2007 10:06 pm (UTC)
Oh, and I quite like that new-ish portrait. Where did you shoot that, with that arched window and that light? The hint of blue is electric!
22nd-Sep-2007 10:18 pm (UTC)
It's the top floor of Tate, which has a balcony that looks out over a huge unused room that was the former law library. It's an echo chamber, so it's impossible to do anything with it other than use it for a very quiet study space (unlike the basement Lounge, which is a major thoroughfare, social space, lunchroom, etc.). It is, as you noted, also an amazingly bright and light space, unlike the cocoon-like darkness of the Lounge.

When I want to do proper work without the threat of being interrupted (which is usually 8-noon), I work there.
23rd-Sep-2007 02:29 am (UTC)
I have a random question: have you ever been to Hillsdale?
7th-Jan-2008 11:07 am (UTC) - Goood aafternoon look at sites

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