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July 25th, 2006

Happy Birthday, ryanohki!

For your present, here's today's Forgotten English!

punctualist
One that is very exact in observing forms and ceremonies. [From] punctual, consisting in a point.
--Noah Webster's American Dictionary of the English Language, 1828


John Knill's Bequest
On this date every five years -- those ending in a one or a six -- a curious morning celebration known as Dancing Round John Knill's Needle takes place on Worvas Hill, near St. Ives, Cornwall. The "needle," built in 1782, is in fact a fifty-foot-tall granite pyramid that was to serve as Knill's gravestone, but its stone sarcophagus remained empty. Initiated in 1801 with Knill in attendance, the festivities feature ten dancing daughters of local fishermen, tin miners and seamen, a paid fiddler, two black-outfitted widows, and local dignitaries performing a ritual that Knill, a popular local customs inspector who was rumored to have been a smuggler, established and paid for. The event culminates with the mayor dispersing money to the poor and prizes to winners of various nautical-arts contents and with the singing of the 100th Psalm, "All People That on Earth Do Dwell."

So did he just ascend straight to Heaven or was his body lost at sea?

-The Gneech

More Crud I Ain't Got Time For -.-

My computer seems to be dying. Or at least, some facet of it is; not sure what exactly. When I first tried to turn it on after returning from San Diego, instead of going "beep" and launching into various Launch Logos, it went "beee-ee-errr-rrp" and sat there with no HD activity. The reset button produced the same result. Finally, toggling the power switch again got it to boot properly.

My Brain: No problem, right? After all, I've got an automated external backup, so if the machine dies, my data's protected. I've been burned by hard drive crashes before and learned my lesson.

Murphy: Ha! Hahahahahaha, haha. You sap. Check again.

My backup drive is non-responsive. ¬.¬ The automated backup program has apparently never seen fit to tell me that it's not writing backups these days because the drive it's supposed to write them to randomly doesn't work ... so I have no idea how long it's been since a backup, and it doesn't matter because the backup's dead anyway.

So as of right now, I don't want to shut down my computer, because I don't know if it'll come back on again, and I have to spend the night trying to figure out what the flap is wrong with the backup drive.

I haven't got time for this. :-`

I wanted to spend the evening cleaning up the devastated mess that has been my studio for the past year. I was planning to spend the evening trying to get some drawing done. But no, I'm going to spend the evening trying to prevent an impending catastrophe.

Grump.

I am thinking of officially putting SJ on hold until after Dragon*Con at this stage, so I can dig out from under all this stress. As long as NeverNever is running, I at least have something in the works.

-The Gneech

More Head-of-Nail Hittery

Dork Tower vs. Furries

-The Gneech

Oops, I Did It the First Time

Computer Update
Well, we managed to get the backup drive working again by a complete power-down-cycle on it. Apparently, the last successful backup was in March. Good to know! >.<

Anyway, I manually activated a backup and it's back on the automated schedule now (I hope), so I'll be checking on that from time to time.

DDR Update
Not wanting to spend $600 on a pair of Cobalt Fusion DDR pads if I could avoid it, I went over to EBGames and spent $200 on a Playstation 2, a memory card, a Pirates of the Caribbean secondary controller (so laurie_robey and I can play co-op games like Champions of Norrath), and a copy of DDR Extreme 2. Into that we plugged our Red Octane soft pads and discovered that they work perfectly.

In other words, it's not the pad that's not working, it's the connection between the pad and the X-Box.

This presents a problem because, well, all the good music is on DDR Ultramix 2 and DDR Ultramix 3, which are only on the X-Box! GRRR. So tomorrow, I'm going to pick up a pair of "Playstation to X-Box" converters and try plugging the pads' Playstation jacks into those, and those into the X-Box. Oy! If that doesn't work, well ... we'll play the PS2 DDR and be thankful for what we've got. The game is a lot more fun when all the arrows work, in any case.

So anyway, the good news is that the backup is working, and we got in a fun 45-minute DDR workout getting mostly A's on songs we'd never played before. So we had a good evening. No drawing or cleaning up done, alas, but you can't have everything.

-The Gneech

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