textualdeviance: (Cascadia)
At the risk of irritating some ...

I admit that one of the reasons I love living in the PNW (the Western half, at least) is that we tend to be socially standoffish. We're exceptionally polite and compassionate, but not overtly friendly. It takes quite a long time to get a native (or near-native, like m'self) to warm up enough to socialize with regularly, and get close to. But the benefit of that is that once you do make it past the polite smiles and handshakes, the friendship you do get out of it is deeper and far more sincere than you might find elsewhere.

See, people are always talking about how legendarily friendly people are in the South and Midwest. They talk about how folks will bring casseroles to a new neighbor, chitchat in line at the grocery store, etc. People coming here from those environs tend to describe our local social customs as cold, at best, and perhaps even rude. (Our habit, for instance, of not RSVPing to social events until the last possible moment.)

But the difference is that the friendliness one tends to find in those other places only goes so far, because it's a custom borne of the safety of sameness.

Diversity counts )

So, yes, it's easier to feel isolated living here than it might be for people who easily fit in with the majority elsewhere. But the benefit is that the friendships we make here are much more satisfying than an insincere hug from some stranger in Texas might be. I've heard us described as the Northwest Mafia, and that's not entirely inaccurate. It's a damn hard time getting into a "family" but once you're in, you're in for life. Granted that if you screw up, that life's pretty damned short, but still. ;)

* )
textualdeviance: (Default)
Got back home late yesterday and slept well in my own bed last night, but I'm still feeling the effects of the past week's worth of travel chaos. All in all, a very good experience, but man, I wore myself out. Way, way too much walking/standing/picking my way through crowds in thickly humid ATL heat. Also had a hard time getting properly hydrated because I'd so quickly sweat it back out again.

**

Rather enjoying my typical NW weather, now. The cloying mist thing makes me feel so very much at home. Kind of hope this isn't all there is to summer, though. We usually get at least a little bit of the clear-and-warmish stuff sometime in September. I'd kinda like to have at least one more BBQ or something.

**

Slightly disappointed at the moment because I heard that the job I thought I was going to have upon my return (as in, they were scheduling me for orientation for it) didn't go as it should have. Not sure exactly why. Agency did submit me for a couple of other gigs, though, so maybe one of those will work out. Have to admit that I'm just a little bit glad. I really wasn't quite ready to start working again right away. I need at least another week to take care of some last-minute sabbatical stuff and recover from the con.

I definitely need the work, though. Too many big-picture things coming up that require cash, and I'm the biggest untapped resource we have for that.

**

Kind of hate the catch-22 involved in this. I'm really, really dying to do that UK trip (either the end-of-October event or the Feb one), but there's no way we can afford it without me working. And if I'm working, I probably won't get the time off. Meh.
Jun. 26th, 2010 02:03 am

<3 My City

textualdeviance: (Cascadia)
Have I mentioned lately how much I love living here?



OK, technically I don't live in the city limits. But still.
textualdeviance: (Cascadia)
In addition to the health update...

*Uprooting stuff:
I think we're finally free of having to muck with Chez Fou. The new owner is now in touch with the service people who screwed up the original job, so I doubt we'll be involved anymore.

Also, we signed off on the inspection report for Charenton, so that should be basically done, now. We have a few bits of documentation and miscellaneous stuff to do for the lender and title co. and such, but assuming that it passes appraisal, we should be in official Pending (aka sit around and wait for closing) status by early next week. And then comes the serious furniture shopping!

Speaking of furniture shopping: Hey, [livejournal.com profile] havdrake? Next time you have a free weekend, wanna come look at stuff with us? I know we have similar taste, and I'd love to get your feedback on some of the stuff we're considering, to be a third set of eyes.


*'Puter stuff:
Thanks to declaring this weekend to be downtime from Uprooting-related things, I finally had enough free time to back up all my docs, pics, video, etc. so M could install the spiffy new hard drive I've had sitting around for... A year? At least. So I'm now installing all the software and IE plug-ins and such I need. Actually, I'll probably be doing that for weeks, as I remember stuff I need to install.

We also installed Win 7, with which I am rapidly falling in love. OMG so fast and so many awesome little touches. Between that and the new drive, my machine feels like a Ferrari. (Which of course means that my bloody slow piece o' crap at work is going to feel like a '74 Pinto in comparison.) I'm sure I'll find stuff to complain about as I get my hands deeper into the guts, but for now, I'm impressed.


*Dear gods, I love living in the NW stuff:
Also, I was inspired by [livejournal.com profile] fenchurche's adventures in blackberries to go raid the ripe vines running through the greenbelt behind our apartment. Got a good quart bag full and barely even touched what was out there. That bag then became part of a coffee cake, which turned out beautifully (no pics, dangit.) It's been a long time since I've done wild berry picking, and I'd forgotten how amazingly good they are right off the vine. NOM.


I feel amazingly calm and relaxed today. Sleepy and tired from all the recent stress, but I do feel like a lot of that stress has finally started resolving, which is a huge load off my mind. Still more to come, of course, but for the short term, I think I'm in good shape.
textualdeviance: (Uprooting)
Perhaps the only more group of douchebags more annoying than Mac evangelists are evangelists for modern and minimalist design.

Every last one of them is an insufferable prig who doesn't want to admit to the existence of their naked emperor, which is the fact that modern design is utterly useless for the messy and chaotic realities of day-to-day living, and is thus pointless in domestic architecture and housewares.

The only thing I can think is that the people who can have a life in these sterile, cold surroundings have no children and no pets and subsist on a diet of Pelligrino and smugness.

Fortunately, I live in the Northwest, where we generally point and laugh at people who insist on trying to educate us unsophisticated hippies about the supposed superiority of spending $3.5 million for a structure that looks more or less like the cardboard box that a real house is supposed to come in. Nothing wrong with having a nice, big house if you have the cash and want it, but if you're trying to impress people around here with your glass-and-steel "distillation of form," you're not going to get very far.

Seriously--I think the whole modernist movement is really just one colossal practical joke, set up by its progenitors to see how far they can pull the wool over the eyes of the desperately pretentious and wealthy clueless. It's like the design version of Scientology or something.


Also, someone's trying to convince me that Craftsman is going to go out of style here. AHAHAHAHAHAHAH. Yes, darling, that would be why you just NEVER see Spanish Colonial in the Southwest or Cape Cod in New England, or neo-Victorian in Northern California anymore... *koff*
textualdeviance: (Cascadia)
In other random news: Have I mentioned lately how much I love living in Geekville? First it was the Elessar vanity plate. And then yesterday (day before?) we saw a plate frame on a Toyota Highlander that read, "There can be only one."

Ah, these are my people. *nods*
textualdeviance: (Cascadia)
So, we were sitting around this morning, brainstorming about what I wanted to do with the day, and I started randomly babbling: Trees... water... blooming things... critters...

Next thing I knew, we were in the car, and I was heading toward the Mukilteo ferry dock. We drove up to Langley environs, drove around for a bit and saw some lovely scenery and some amazing waterfront houses, then drove up to Meerkerk Gardens to look at their acres of gorgeous rhodies.

We drove the rest of the way up the island, across the big bridge (which, amazingly enough, I had never seen in person before) and then headed back home. A simple day, but nice. I enjoyed the quiet after the weeks of house-related stuff.


deception02, originally uploaded by TextualDeviance.


More pics here

Jun. 28th, 2008 02:38 pm

Ahhh

textualdeviance: (Cascadia)
A happy afternoon hour: Sitting out on the back deck with M, munching on very good cheese and crackers and sublime Rainier cherries.

Just slightly too hot and not quite enough shade to be perfect, but damned close.

After SO many months of horrible, cold weather, an absolutely clear sky here is like a religious experience. We normally get at least a week or two worth of nice days throughout late spring, but no dice this year. So this weekend--even if a little on the hot side--is most definitely welcome.
May. 31st, 2008 02:50 pm

Roaming

textualdeviance: (Cascadia)
Our original plan for my birthday was to head down to The Market, since it's been a dog's age since we were there last. Sadly, I didn't plan ahead, or I'd have realized that it's Market Festival time, and therefore every single person in three counties, plus a cruise ship load of tourists, was there. Parking was not to be had, and I'd have freaked out with the crowds, too.

So we drove up to Ballard instead. That looked a little boring, so we ended up in Fremont, where we decided food was in order, and stopped here for brunch, knowing nothing about the place.

That just happened to be one of the best meals I've ever had. Holy moly. We WILL be returning. Yes.

Ran into a co-worker who lives in the hood. That was odd. Drove back north and went to Country Village, which was kind of dead and boring and didn't have nearly the number of cute shops I remember. And then I started feeling icky and it started raining so we came home.

I suppose we'll probably do more stuff this weekend. I feel like finding a farmer's market somewhere and finding stuff to throw in a pan with olive oil. Or whatever. M promised to clean my kitchen for me for my birthday, which is very sweet of him. So I'll probably be doing something grand and messy with it sometime this weekend.

Any suggestions for other stuff we might do?
textualdeviance: (Default)

Today's caucus experience, originally uploaded by TextualDeviance.

I got there fairly early. The line stretched down the street.

I signed my name, pledged for Hillary and dashed out. Pretty much every other person there was pledged for Obama, and I didn't figure I'd do any good to argue.

Interesting, though. Definitely different from regular voting.

textualdeviance: (Cascadia)
Just got back from a terrific evening out celebrating [livejournal.com profile] heyokaboy's birthday with much of the gang. So good to see a bunch of people I haven't seen in ages.

I seriously need to get out more often--especially to roam my own city. It really is beautiful, and I spend so little time in the city proper these days. I haven't even been to the Market in probably four years. That needs to change. I generally like living where I do--we have a far nicer house than we would've been able to afford had we bought closer in at the time--but I do miss being more in the thick of things. We're not really trapped in suburbia--this isn't exactly Bellevue, after all--but it is kind of a trek to get out here, which limits how much city crawling--and socializing--we can do.

Still, I'm happy with what I can get--which is a lot more than when I was living in the Ham--and I'm in a much better mood than I have been in a few days.

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