Spawning, books, and VPN insanity.

It's almost October. My favorite month of the year. Halloween, hints of cool weather her in Texas, my spawning day. All good things. Not much in the way of October plans yet, well other than watching the livefeed/short film stream from the HP Lovecraft Film Festival next weekend, and the traditional marathon of "Friday the 13th" movies on Friday the 13th. I'm not planning to have a party, crowds are still pretty high on the stress-o-meter. But I will try to hang out with my friends (almost all couples, so that makes thing easier) around my spawning day.

This week has been mostly work foo. Doing the world's slowest test, trying to get our VPN to stop timing out after 8 hours, which seems to be the default. The settings look pretty simple, and my first, short test seems to have worked (with some unexpected quirkiness). But there's no way to test it, except to connect to the VPN and let it sit. Should have an answer in a little while.

Otherwise, I went bookstore raiding this morning, found a new small bookstore and gave it a look. Nice people, nice place, if a little unorganized. But since it was small, I could still go through the shelves pretty quickly. Gave me ideas of the space I'd need for my dream library *wink* I was planning on doing a bunch of chores today, but as I went for chilling out instead. Tomorrow I'll try to get some more errands done. Then it's back to Carcosa Corp. At least I'll have a VPN that lasts longer than 8 hours. Which will make my developers and devops people happy.

That's all I really have right now. Going to list to some audiobook foo for a while, then off to bed. Night cultists.

Plans should be called ‘guidelines’

Well I had planned to write a non-state of the fox post, something about a new computer project I have, or about books, fun stuff. Rather than my usual recap about how I'm slogging through the mood and anxiety issues. Friday night was good, built a VM with Linode, updated it and setup all my usual foo. Was rather impressed with the speed of the VM. Got everything setup, with the plan I'd work on it more on Saturday. Instead, after doing all the adulting I needed to do, I just vegged at home watching movies. Which I guessed I needed. Woke up this morning, and's a full set of Sundays. So I'm taking it easy right now, listening to an audiobook. Will be heading down to Amythest's place to hang out. Then back to Carcosa Corp for the last week of September. Then October comes, I hope my favorite month is full of cooler weather, happier moods, creepy books and movies and general positiveness. I can dream.

Cope, I can haz it ?

Been a crazy fortnight since I blogged last. Had a major mood crash at the beginning of the week, that had been building up for a while. Luckily, venting about the mood swing, and the problems I've had with leaving Château Innsmouth on the weekends. Dealing with my fellow humans is pretty hard now adays, and I tend to use up all my coping tentacles during the work week. But after talking about it on Facebook, I've been doing a bit better. Even with work being kind of crazy this week. Yay for tentacle regeneration.

Got a book I'd been looking forward to. 'Cthulhu Blues' by Doug Wynne. 3rd book in one of my favorite Mythos series. Lots of fun to read, I'll try to write a more detailed review later. I highly recommend it, and not just because the author is a pal of mine. Plus I found out about interesting weirdness is Croatia. Go forth and read my fellow Lovecraft geeks.

Speaking of social stuff, I have a going away party for some friends who are leaving the sniffly hell of Texas for the Pacific Northwest. It will be good to see friends, and Seattle isn't all that far away, and I have plans for visiting places in the area in the future. And I'll be hanging with people tonight who know what's going on in my head, so if I hide in a corner or leave early, no one will think less of me. My friends are cool that way.

Running out of words, and focus. So I'll call this a post, then go read for a while before the party. Catch you all laters.

Books, Burgers and Beyond

Huzzah for 3 day weekend. Sadly, Labor Day weekend tends to fall on or around my Mom's spawning day. Specifically this year, it's today. I intentionally worked my plans around not having plans today. So if I woke up with a full on depression cycle, I could just stay in bed. Luckily for me, I woke up in an alright mood. I miss Mom, but there's no real sadness about the day. Which Mom would have preferred. I also made sure to have chores either done beforehand, or be doable after today. I then turned off Conky so the TODO list isn't visible. I'll start it up again before I go to bed tonight.

So I got up, ran one quick errand (pick up a script from the pharmacy), then aired up a tire that was low, and drove out to Half Price Books. Partially because that was a tradition with me and Mom, books on her birthday. And partially because they have an annual 20% sale for Labor Day weekend. Didn't go too crazy, and I ended up picking up a pair of books I already owned. Oops. I'd take them back, but I honestly don't know if I'd come out ahead with the current price of gas here in Texas. I had vague ideas of going to multiple bookstores, but I honestly didn't feel like it. So many books at home and all. I did stop by a big furniture store on the way back, been looking at getting a reading chair, and well, I wanted to test drive a few. Didn't buy anything, but I have a good idea what I want. So we'll see. Stopped by a burger place for lunch, and came home.

Been moving stuff around here in Château Innsmouth. I really have way too much crap for this tiny apartment, but as long I as I don't look around, I can ignore it. *wink* When the weather gets cooler, I'm going to borrow someone's truck/SUV and haul out a bunch of stuff, either for donation or recycling.

Rest of Saturday? Well, a delay in writing while I run out and get a burrito. Came home, ate half of it. (half later for midnight snack or tomorrow). Now watching 'The Prestige' for the first time. Somehow I kept missing out on it. I'll also probably fiddle around with moving stuff around more. Yay for quiet, restful Saturdays...especially when I still have two more days off.

“Who’s this ‘Haunter of the Dark’ who keeps calling you ?”

Random geek post. A few months ago I upgraded my Nexus 5 to the Google Pixel (not the XL). I'd transfered over all the files, and the device's name, NecronomIpod. (cheerfully stolen from Charles Stross). But it didn't feel right, devices have their own personalities, and I generally give their own names. (Yes, I'm weird that way). So, Saturday came around, and I was re-listening to 'The Haunter of the Dark' radio play. I was pondering the magic McGuffin of the story, and thought "It's dialing 'N' for Nyarlathotep!". *bing* I have name. So my phone's new name is 'The Shining Trapezohedron', with shiny new wallpaper from Gage Prentiss' design for the Robert Bloch Award from the NecronomiCon Providence. Nerd, thy name is Vulpine. Now lets see if Calls to Cthulhu have less static, and if calling Yuggoth won't be long distance any more.

*insert cool subject here*

Another week has passed. I'm finally done with my first two series of allergy shots. Next round is 12 shots in 3 months, so min of 1 shot a week. I'm going to probably do 2 a week, so I'll be on the next round in October, and hopefully at maintenance level by the first of the year. Which I hope will help settle down the pollen horde.

Been getting lots of pictures and reports from NecronomiCon. Still regretting not going, even if it was the reasonable thing. It looks like people are having a lot of fun, and there's lots of cool things. Also, my internet pal Joe Pulver (who also had to skip the con due to health issues) won the Robert Bloch award. I'll freely admit to happy dancing when I read it. Tonight I've been doing a marathon of Dark Adventure Radio Theatre, since I didn't get to see them do it live this year. Got to get my weird fix after all.

I haven't been doing much of anything with computers lately, well on my own time that is. I have to replace a drive on Hydra, and I want to move some systems around, but I'm generally lacking in motivation. I used to live for geek projects, but I guess it's lost some of it's sparkle after almost 20 years of geek projects. Maybe it will change, who knows?

And I utterly lost my train of thought. Guess I'll call this a post. Night all.

Sadly, the shoggoths didn’t do their chores.

First full week back at Carcosa Corp, and at Château Innsmouth. Was a rough week mood/depression wise. But I was able to soldier on, and do all the adulting. Patched both stage environments at work. We'll do production week after next. Have a bunch of boring documentation to do as well. The wild life of a shoggoth wrangler.

Vegging at home today, well vegging and chores. Came home last night, and I went to bed early due to exhaustion. Forced myself to stay in bed til about 9am this morning. Had some weird dreams, including dreaming about a dream home in Victoria BC. Only reason I know that though is that Craigdarroch Castle was part of the dream. (We visited the castle when we stopped in Victoria during the cruise.) It's nice when my subconscious doesn't beat me up. Btw, my dream house has a view of the water and lots of room for bookshelves. Shocking, I know. I really liked what little I saw of Victoria, and I've been talking about going back there for a longer stay than 4 hours. (I'd like to go to some museums that have 'Royal' in the name) We'll see what happens. I also really want to see Puget Sound/Salish Sea again, the sea was a really dark green, almost black. Definitely was one of the high points of the vacation.

Chores were well, dull. Multiple loads of laundry, since I haven't done any since I got back from vacation. Store run earlier, picked up the kitchen and general cleaning at home. Allergies are in the 'annoying' zone. Really tired of coughing. Oh well, hopefully the shots will start having a real effect by the time the cedar trees go crazy around the holidays.

NecronomiCon is next weekend. Really, really wish I'd been able to make it. Oh well, I'll make it to Providence one day. On the plus side, I'll get reports on all the new releases that I'll need to acquire for the Starry Wisdom Library. And there's always 2019, and next year's HPLFF, and who knows what else. So that's about it for today's dump of Vulpine brainmeats.

Cruise to Hyperborea

11 days
4 vessels
5 towns/cities
2143 nautical miles.
2 flights.
9 comments on my Cthulhu shirts
15 books finished

So that's the Alaska Cruise 2017 in a nutshell. While things definitely did not go completely according to plan, I did try to make the most of everything. Came to a few conclusions. One, I still love the ocean, definitely need to spend more time on/near it. I spent hours looking and listening to the ocean, often reading at the same time. Loved the feeling of the ship swaying, helped me get to sleep at night.

The ship was interesting. Huge, bigger than the USS Intrepid aircraft carrier. For those in the crusing know, it was the Carnival Legend. We had a balcony room port side, aft. (aka left and in the back for the non nautical). accomidations were nice, loved the shower. I slept on a couch that was converted to a swin bed, but I spent most of my time in the club chair the room had, great for reading. The food was good, nothing out of this world, but enjoyable. Ship had a very cool library, books as decor mixed with shelves of novels. Would have spent more time there, it was quiet. But the downside was very little airflow (a problem I had on most of the ship), so it was more comfortable to lounge on the balcony.

Alaska was interesting. Saw a glacier up close, saw so many bald eagles, I actually felt a little blaise about seeing them. As for cetaceans, I got to see killer whales, humpback whales and what I think was a striped dolphin (aka, not Flipper) running next to the ship. Parts of Alaska looked like something out of a horror or Lovecraftian story, dark, quiet woods and looming mountains. Gorgeous, but it could have easily been terrifying with a small shift. The towns/cities themselves were...eeh. Right by the cruise docks was full of shops selling 'cheap' jewelry and tshirts and stuff. And we didn't spend enough time in any of them for me to explore the more interesting parts. On the other down side, I'm as badly allergic to Alaska as I am to Texas. I was miserable from day 3 on with 'cedar fever' symptoms, which I haven't gotten rid of.

We also stopped in Victoria BC. I liked this city more, it had a better 'vibe' and the houses and building had more history to them. Again, I didn't get to explore...which was sad, since there's a famous bookstore there. Already have made some mental plans to go back some year. Also, I'm told the museums are amazing. Seattle, where we were for a few days before the cruise. Did the usual tourist stuff (Space Needle, Pike Place Market, etc). People who know me also shouldn't be surprised that I went to the Seattle Aquarium and spent a lot of time trying to communicate with the octopus there. Had some really tasty sushi one night. (no connection). There's a small laundry list of things I'd want to go back to Seattle to do, but it was nice to visit.

So that's things in a very small nutshell. Lots more to talk about, but if I tried to record everything I'd probably go nuts. My depression and allergies were kind of nuts on the trip, a cruise of several thousand people is challenging the likes of me. But my friends were really ok with me spending large chunks of the cruise in the stateroom reading. My friends get me, and I'm glad they talked me into going on a cruise. I may do it again some time, when things are a little more stable. I'll probably post some trivia stuff, and some of the pictures I have at another time. Night all.

Bad news about Necronomicon 2017

Some not so good news for my fellow NecronomiCon people. Due to unexpected bills, a lack of available PTO, and general exhaustion, I'm not going to make it to Providence. Definitely not what I want to do, but it's what is best for me in the long run. I'll be there in spirit, and I'll do my eldritchness to be there in 2019. Sorry to all my cultist pals I was planning on meeting or seeing again, this year has definitely not gone according to plan.

I'll post about the cruise later on in the week, I'm still drained as heck. Miss the ocean. Oh well.

All aboard the Sumatry Queen for fame and glory!

It's travel day. Working from home today, then I'll get picked up and head to the airport for my evening flight. Then it's Vulpine's Big Adventure. I'm going to be mostly offline for the trip. I'm going to try keeping away from social media and from online news. I don't know how well this will work, but it's the plan. If you want/need to get ahold of me, or have some link I need to see when I get back to the real world, email is your best option. vulpine-at-innsmouth dot net.

The plan for today is to make feeble attempts at getting some work finished up, while tweaking on travel foo. And twitching. I'm going to try to put journal entries together on my tablet during the trip, but I'll probably not post them til I get back. So don't worry at general radio silence. Wish me luck, smooth sailing, and a lack of security theater. Cthulhu Fhtagn! and all that jazz.