Hello!!

Sep. 16th, 2017 10:29 pm
raisintorte: (Default)
[personal profile] raisintorte
People seemed to have moved over here for reasons I think I missed but have something to do with TOS at LJ. I'm back and active cause it's the Yuletide time of year. I will probably cross post my Yuletide stuff to LJ but just wanted to say hi and that I am awake and alive over here!!!

still haven't finished a book, sigh

Sep. 13th, 2017 09:15 pm
topaz119: (milky way)
[personal profile] topaz119
So, in lieu of the Weds book meme, I get a little maudlin...

Circling back to DragonCon, some of our perennial favorites are the panels on the Space and Science tracks, which are like a second con within the con—a little cocoon of Really Cool Reality within the sprawling web of Really Cool Altered-Reality that surrounds it. This year’s Space track was especially neat in that the Cassini mission (to Saturn & its moons & rings) is about to end after nearly 20 years of amazing data and new finds. I think one or the other of us were at every Cassini panel this year and were comparing notes the whole weekend. (One of the really cool things was that half the panelists I saw/met were women, which is always such a boost to my (sometimes beaten down) girl-engineer morale.)

Anyway, Cassini is almost out of fuel, and has had its mission extended so far beyond its original parameters that it’s almost unbelievable. In order to avoid any potential contamination of the moons Enceladus and Titan with Earth microbes that might have survived (because they are potentially life-supporting environments), the spacecraft is deliberately being sent on an orbit that will trap it in Saturn’s gravity and burn it up on reentry. It’ll be transmitting on the way down, though, sampling the atmosphere and sending as much data as possible along the way.

This is all happening on Friday. I feel like I’m losing a friend who’s had the best vacation pictures ever. I can’t imagine how the NASA team feels.

eta: Here's all the 'post cards' in a free ebook from NASA: https://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/resources/7777/?category=graphics

greetings from the tail end of Irma

Sep. 12th, 2017 01:51 pm
topaz119: (love is love)
[personal profile] topaz119
We didn’t really get the horrible stuff, but we did get enough to poke something through the roof, sigh. D & #2 got something up in the attic under the leak, but of course we didn’t realize we even had one until I saw water on the bedroom ceiling. D says that’s all he’s seeing even this morning, but it’s enough that we’re going to have to do the whole contractor/insurance/MONEY thing, bleargh.

On the lighter side of life, D and I did make it to NYC this past weekend. I swear, I didn’t know if we were going to go or not right up until we left for the airport, and even then D’s Crohn’s was acting up and we were the absolute last people on the plane (I was standing at the plane door waiting for him and making sure the flight attendant’s knew not to give our seats away to standby.) But we made it, and managed to navigate the hell-hole that LGA is with the construction (Note to self: OMG, fly into JFK next time!) and got to our (seriously beautiful) hotel with enough time to chill for a bit and change for dinner (because yes, I did make reservations at a place with an actual dress code. D was not at all impressed, at least not until we got there and he saw the view, but he still kinda grumbled. He wore shorts the rest of the weekend to make up for the trauma. ::rolls eyes::)

Oh, and on the way to dinner, we nearly ran into Nicki Minaj and her Oscar DeLaRenta ball gown in the elevator. (Nas may or may not have been present, as the gown took up so much room that everyone else was squished to the sides & kind of in the background. She literally had her hands over her head to keep from crushing the appliques. We let that elevator go by, but we ended up following them out of the lobby anyway. She’s tiny in person and the dress was much lighter and colorful than what I've seen in pictures, though that might just be that everything I've seen is against a black background.)

So, yes, dinner was excellent – the River Café, underneath the Brooklyn Bridge on the Brooklyn side of the river. Gorgeous Manhattan views, very good food, excellent service. See also: pricey. But it was the only reservation I had for the weekend, and the hotel was free, so it all balanced out. (D’s eyebrows still reached for the ceiling, though. I hate to tell him what our last dinner at Peter Luger topped out at—he doesn’t think about things like that until it’s right in front of his face, and while RC wasn’t cheap, it was not outrageous for a 3-course dinner in B’lyn.)

The weather was fantastic, so we walked along the Hudson up to One World Trade Center and Tribeca on Saturday, and took the Staten Island ferry on Sunday for views of the Statue of Liberty. I also dragged him into the Morgan Library & Museum and to a fair amount of historical marker reading in lower Manhattan. I tempered that with the bar at the Marriott Marquis for Times-Square-watching during the Auburn/Clemson game and fish & chips for brunch on Sunday at the Dead Rabbit. All in all, it was pretty fun even if we did have to work around hurricanes and feeling not great. BTW, BabyBoy has informed me that Pace & Rutgers are on his college wishlist, so we may be back on a more regular basis.

Most schools in the area are canceled again today (about half the county is without power, but we were fine apart from a few flickers.) I worked from home yesterday (Monday) but am back in the office today. To quote from Jenny Crusie: Nothin' but good times ahead.

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