Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Friday, May 18, 2018


Just finished reading Friday Night Lights, about high school football, most notably in Odessa, Texas

After hearing about the TV series, I was expecting something uplifting -- tales of  occasional despair, yes, but ultimately acheivement, success, bonding, resulting in those guys who put up signs commemorating their high school football team of fifty years ago, and its winning season. Happy Days, but with footballs.

Not what I got.  FNL is, ultimately, a story of exploitation and misery. And being dumped for the newer, younger, faster model.

Nicely written, though.

Thursday, May 17, 2018


The feeling keeps coming back to me that our resident French exchange student is pulling the wool over  my eyes about something to do with  her relationship with a local guy.  I have nothing concrete to base that on -- just a feeling, based on something she said awhile ago about a situation where I thought he was lying, and she said No, I told him to say that.  And there is awareness that she is not above gaming the system - for example, getting to arrive in first class of the day a few minutes late (normally a reprimand or detention offence) by stopping at the nurse's office, showing the nurse a recent bruise from sports, talking briefly about it, and then getting a pass from the nurse to show up late without penalty.  Or the time that she did something in her sport which should have gotten her tossed from the game for a while, but she said Sorry in this meek voice with this cute French accent, and the referee just said Don't do it again, and let her continue. So it's just a hunch, that she's getting away with stuff, but it bugs me. I don't know if that's happening with this guy - or if I should care.  After all, she's leaving in about two weeks, and then she isn't my problem any more.

Not that she IS a problem - we all like her.  But when you start wondering about whether she's gaming the system in one sector, you begin to wonder about others.

Maybe what's really bugging me is that she's coasting through this year.  Of course, thats somewhat expected - as an exchange student, her grades don't count for anything so long as she keeps them above failing, and she does know that when she returns home, she'll have to take the year 'for real'. So she's putting in some effort, but its somewhat play acting, too..  Not taking it seriously. And that bothers me.  But if its true, as before, I don't know if I should really care. The year doesn't count, after all.

Or is it something else? 

Monday, May 07, 2018

Both Tah and Dah

According to the counter on DuoLingo, as of this morning I have done language exercises in French and Italian every day for 365 days.


Wednesday, May 02, 2018


Watching the (old) pilot for the (much, much older) Time Tunnel series, and it occurs to me:

The Time Tunnel is Quantum Leap.

Thursday, April 26, 2018


Today I discovered that taking pictures in bright sunlight with a camera phone is a very bad idea when the sun can easily glint off the display, so that you can see your own reflection better than the thing you're trying to photograph.  And having a camera phone which will switch from front to rear cameras with a light swipe on the screen will result in many pictures of your own scowling face -- not that you could see it at the time, due to the aforementioned sun-glinting-problems.

Technology.  Fun when it works.

Saturday, April 21, 2018


French pronunciation is seriously messed up.

Comment voyez-vous votre avenir, for example.

Sure, the first part is kohmon voyyay vooh, that's obvious.

But no way is votre avenir is  voh trav en eer.   It's clearly vohtruh veneer.  Clearly.

Argh.  Seriously messed up.

Thursday, April 05, 2018


I have a new French conversation partner -- and she's a research physicist working in fluid dynamics!  Wow, this is going to be fun!