cynthia1960: me from Wiscon Chronicles v. 3 (Default)
[personal profile] emceeaich posted the bulletin about my mother's death a couple of weeks ago, and I've been off in radio silence. I'm still processing this.

However, hearing that we've lost Suzette from [personal profile] james_davis_nicoll and [personal profile] supergee is making me think more about eldering and communication as well as musing about losing a parent.

I treasure her fiction. The images of the elder linguist women in Barren Houses plotting subversion with hands busy working fiber arts and sending messages coded in recipes, and the wisdom and humor of the Ozark Grannys are priceless. I only hope I can age like that.

Her non-fiction books about nonviolent communication are also soooo useful. I need a refresher course on this. And of course, reading her LJ posts on [livejournal.com profile] ozarque was fascinating. I've missed hearing from her since dementia made her go silent. As a commenter on James Nicoll's LJ noted, it is so sad that somebody who was so insightful about communication had to lose that ability at the end of her life. My condolences go out to George Elgin and her family and friends.

Give her eternal rest, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon her.
cynthia1960: passed out cat (catnip)
We are open to suggestions about stopping Yukino (and [personal profile] telophase's Sora) from pooping outside the box.
cynthia1960: (booksandcats)
And we didn't even have to deploy [personal profile] telophase's tech solution!

The culprit is Her Felinity, Yukino, Queen of Naughtiness. (our primary feline of interest)
cynthia1960: picture of my cat (Snickers)
Kitten Therapy: A Prescription for Stress

The Tribble Sisters aren't little bitty things any more; I get doses of teenage/twentysomething kitties now.
Something like this would be useful at no-kill shelters to help socialize the furballs. Betcha they'd find homes really fast too.

This is also like those cat clubs in Tokyo that give city dwellers furry time to enjoy if they don't have room for them at home.
cynthia1960: (powers for good or evil?)
[personal profile] telophase's latest bit of household tech implemented to catch a certain kitty who is failing litterbox manners and pooping Outside The Box (we have at least one of those too) has got me wishing for the ideal Internet of Things Kitty Nannycam:

Features:
secure access for cat Meowmys and just them, not the rest of the Internet!
triggers The Squirt Bottle of Loving Correction when certain wannabe furry bedroom slippers (I'm talking to you, Miss Elizabeth Bennet-Tribble, and you, Yukino) start prowling on work surfaces in the kitchen looking for noms

Other useful features to suggest?
cynthia1960: (San Francisco Giants)
Madison Bumgarner for God. Panda Sandoval for St. Peter.

(and the A's have been avenged like in '12)
cynthia1960: (Mrs. Bennet OMG)
manfeels-park.com

Any other commentary could spoil the fun. Blame my beloved spouse [personal profile] emceeaich for this.

Edited to fix link.
cynthia1960: (Down with patriarchy)
So, let's see, Anita Sarkeesian gets invited to speak at Utah State University by their Center for Women and Gender. This invitation brings out the usual festering shitthrowing with a topping of a threat of mass violence directed at Sarkeesian and attendees at this event. "Enhanced security procedures" be damned, because according to Utah state law, the right of somebody with a valid concealed carry permit to bring their weapon to the event trumps the ability to safely hold the event.

Let's be blunt here, this tells me that any place in this country with carry permits is the least safe place to speak out against the power of the state and the ability of men to control the lives of women. Last time I checked, this is a classic fascist tactic. I'm not safe from these threats here at home, but at least here, law enforcement such as it is, still finds this illegal as hell.

And now, this means that I've got to think seriously about staying well away from any place in this country with laws like this. Wisconsin, unfortunately, this means you.

Comments on this entry are closed.
cynthia1960: me from Wiscon Chronicles v. 3 (Default)
If somebody in the UK says something is "pants"; is this a good thing or a bad thing?
cynthia1960: (feminist hulk smash capitalism)
They made the 175K goal, now they're trying to get to 200K. [personal profile] emceeaich still has room in the matching pledge, so go for it!
cynthia1960: (feminist hulk love)
[personal profile] emceeaich is doing a matching pledge to get the Ada Initiative over the hump to teach fifteen people at WisCon 39 how to lead Ally Skills workshops. Help my beloved spouse fork over the $, ok?
cynthia1960: (Ladybug; the totem)
I hereby enlist in the Insect Army Reader's Auxiliary, Coccinellidae Division! Ladybugs rock and we are not wussy! Show your spots with pride!!!!
cynthia1960: (Down with patriarchy)
When I was checking email this morning, I saw a mention by Salon.com's Katie McDonough about yet another article telling college-educated women that they should snag their man while still in school otherwise they're doomed to spinsterhood. As I roll my eyes at this timeworn set of heterosexist patriarchy-sustaining platitudes that "Princeton Mom" trots out, you gentle readers may note that I have utterly failed to follow her advice. In the almost thirty-two years since I graduated, I have spent exactly one single month in the wedded state, and that milestone doesn't officially happen until this Sunday the 16th. Never let it be said that I rushed into this particular life-changing choice!

There was a running joke back in the day at my beloved alma mater that you're supposed to find your one true love there, take Theology of Marriage your senior year, and then approximately eighteen months after graduation, get married in Mission Santa Clara. Besides the fact that the Jesuit who was teaching that course ended up leaving the Society of Jesus a few years later on to get married (focusing on the lab section, not the lecture!), there was *no freaking way* I was going to replace needed chemistry labs with that course.

My beloved spousal unit noted to me over dinner this evening that it probably would be a very good thing for "Princeton Mom" never to run into yours truly in a dark alley, upon which I noted that if I had just one bullet and ran into both her and He Who Must Not Be Named, she would get off easy.

Now, I'm going to be charitable and say that probably there has been a lot of relationships featuring members of the SCU class of '82 that started off while we were in school that are still going strong. I will even note (gasp!) that my Evil College Boyfriend may actually have become a decent spouse for the someone else he left me for, but that I really don't have the time or spoons to find that tidbit out. All I know is that if I had taken her advice, and married that young man that I did share a lot of background in common, it would have been an utter disaster for me and I sure as hell would be living a much different life than I have right now (my cynical self says that I would be probably be either divorced or doing time for ridding the planet of him).

Le sigh.
cynthia1960: (Sharks slash)
A side benefit of reading Ken Dryden’s The Game is picking up some bits of really nasty Québécois swears*. Might come in handy if we ever make our Eastern Canada road trip with the Sharks (something to mutter under our breath at Centre Bell).

*which all seem to have something to do with the Catholic Church, quelle surprise!

One of my favorite parts of the book is watching Dryden comment on part of the playing career of one of our current Sharks assistant coaches, Larry Robinson.

Thanks [personal profile] commodorified for the reading suggestion!
cynthia1960: me from Wiscon Chronicles v. 3 (Default)
I had so much fun last month, I'd like to keep it going! Please include the date you want in your comments.
cynthia1960: me from Wiscon Chronicles v. 3 (Default)
[personal profile] holyoutlaw asks What are your optimistic dreams for the future, from your hoped-for lifespan through shortly after?

It’s hard to stay optimistic about things political here in the US due to the impact that big money has on our system, but I’m hoping we reach critical mass on both widening access to same gender marriage and the end of the War on Some Drugs.

On a spiritual front, I’m also encouraged by the example Pope Francis is taking on economic issues. It would be seriously way optimistic for me to think that there will be a similar move on gender issues within the Church.

On a scientific front, I would hope that we can make some progress on fighting chronic diseases, especially diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease.
cynthia1960: (steampunksuffrage)
[personal profile] jesse_the_k asks When you realized that your work would find you in male dominated milieux, did that influence what you did or how you did it?

When I was little, I was absolutely fascinated by astronomy. Chemistry came into my life not much later when I was wondering what the stars were made out of. When I was in 9th grade, I was dabbling in theater arts and getting A’s in science. I kept getting cast as middle aged or elderly women at the age of 14, and I never could be the ingenue. Of course, I could raid my great-grandmother’s closet for my characters’ wardrobes, but I looked at my type casting and my grades in science, and then went, “Cindy, don’t quit your day job!” My high school was exceptionally good in science and math, and my physics teacher was very keen on getting the girls in her classes to focus on STEM careers. I was able to work at NASA Ames in Mountain View as both a senior in high school and a senior in college.

The gender imbalance wasn’t so acute in high school because my closest girlfriends and I were pretty much science geeks together. By the time I got to Santa Clara, I declared my chemistry major right away and just kept plugging along. I never got any flak from the chemistry faculty about how girls don’t major in chem, but one of my friends got a major sexist slap down from one of the physics professors about how girls don’t do physics (GRRRR, he was a grade A jerk).

There were four girls majoring in chem in my year, and three out of the four of us graduated cum laude (only one guy was with us, and the 4th girl wasn’t far behind us).

My only question was whether or not I was going to go to graduate school in chemistry, and by the time I finished my senior thesis with my second tour at Ames, I pretty much had gotten tired of academia and didn’t really have the necessary drive to do research. Soooo, that meant looking for a job, and I got a job in the semiconductor industry right out of school (which incidentally paid a lot better than pharmaceuticals if you had a BS degree thirty years ago). I started off doing benchtop quality control testing on the chemicals and plastics used in wafer fabs and chip assembly, and then switched into materials characterization and microscopy where I still am today. Some of the meetings I was in at my old company, I was at least 33% of the XX chromosome cohort. My current company is probably split 60/40 M/F, but that’s probably damn good for around here in Silicon Valley.

I’m pretty happy because my work focuses on doing good materials characterization to help others improve their products. My primary job is making samples for transmission electron microscopy and the quality of the pictures that my imaging co-workers take are only as good as the samples that those of us in the sample prep group make. If I do a really good job, we can see the atomic lattice at 400,000X, which rocks. And I still keep my hand in surface contamination analysis by bouncing X-rays off of shiny wafers part of the time.
cynthia1960: me from Wiscon Chronicles v. 3 (Default)
[personal profile] elainegrey asks What do you notice about the quality of the light this time of year?

One thing I am grateful for at home is that our windows face south, so we get the low sun for most of the day. The pots of herbs on the porch by the front door are leaning southward to get as much of the the light as they can. The folks on the north side of the building seem to be in shade all the time. I never have had to use a light box so far in the winter, but I wonder if I would need one if I didn’t have this sun come in during the day.

I also enjoy looking at the setting sun lighting up the eastern hills in a warm golden glow because it’s lower in the sky and has to fight through more atmosphere. We don’t get quite that golden effect during the summer, so it’s something to appreciate during our shortest days.

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