Daily Archives: September 8, 2008

Technical Difficulty

MySQL is having minor conniptions, and you may have run into a problem loading the Owlyblog earlier today. With the aid of trusty techperson friends we are attempting to locate and fix the problems. We’re back up and running, which leads me to suspect that it may have been a server-based issue, but there’s no telling what might happen next. Please be patient, and keep beaks and wingtips inside the blog at all times, for your own safety.

Usually I can fudge a patch and get the blog running, but this one is beyond me and so I’ve reached out to more knowledgeable persons than myself. Both the MySQL and the WP installation are going to need help, so if you have familiarity with either of these, please let me know.

And now, because I have lost THREE HOURS on this, I have to bury myself in work.

Weekend and Book Roundup

I am drinking the most excellent jasmine green tea this morning and feeling very happy about it. It’s Mighty Leaf Mountain Spring Jasmine, one of three remaining jasmine tea bags I’ve been hoarding from the huge sampler box ADZO gave me for Christmas a couple of years ago. It makes the morning very, very good indeed.

The weekend was lovely. There was the trip to the luthier on Saturday morning (see below for associated cello-squeeing), house tidying and general upkeep Saturday afternoon, a two-hour dinner prep and cooking Saturday night (in which I winged a roasted garlic-mushroom-onion-chicken thing that I served over pasta), the annual M&M birthday party Saturday night (at which we saw many many people, huzzah!), a trip to the Marche de l’ouest for fruits and vegs (we ate all the berries on the way home in the car, though, oops; but hey, it’s fruit) and then the bookstore on Sunday morning, groceries Sunday afternoon, and homemade pizza Sunday evening. The only thing I forgot to do was go to the bank to deposit a tax refund.

There’s been a lot of book reading lately. (Not that there isn’t usually, but it just seems more intense than usual.) I might be the only person I know of, or at least within three degrees of separation, who geeked out in absolute excitement over receiving my secondhand copy of the out-of-print Women Musicians of Venice: Musical Foundations, 1525-1855. Gods bless Jane Baldauf-Berdes for writing exactly the book that I needed, fifteen years before I knew that I did. I devoured Scott Westerfeld’s Peeps and Last Days in an afternoon and evening, and will cheerfully lend them out to anyone looking for a decent and believable vampire story for teens. Ceri lent me her copy of Charles de Lint’s Dingo, which I also read in an hour in a half. I also finished Michael Pollan’s The Omnivore’s Dilemma this weekend, and it was excellent. I looked for The Botany of Desire in the bookstore Sunday morning but of course it wasn’t in stock; if I’d wanted In Defense of Food I could have had one of twenty-three hardcover copies, but I wanted Botany. I don’t try to be difficult, really. (I also went with the intent of picking up Neal Stephenson’s new Anathem, couldn’t find it anywhere, was absolutely mystified at how they couldn’t have a single copy in stock when Stephenson is So Damn Big, then checked a terminal and discovered that it doesn’t come out in North America till Tuesday. Argh. Should have ordered the UK version that released on September 1 [obviously why I thought the NA edition was also out]; I could have had it finished by now.) Since they didn’t have the Pollan I wanted I picked up Barbara Kingsolver’s Animal, Vegetable, Miracle instead, which has been on my to-read list since its release.

I read the boy the first half of the first chapter of The Wind in the Willows while he ate his after-dinner ice cream cone last night. I’m stunned that he sat still for twelve pages of text with only the occasional pen and ink sketch tucked among the words. I’m looking forward to sharing this with him, a few pages at a time.

Speaking of books, I have to reread the hearthcraft book today in preparation for drafting this weekend’s lecture. I suspect everything I’ll need for this hour-long intro-to will be in one particular chapter, prefaced by a quick definition of the subject and the importance of addressing home-based spirituality. The problem will be keeping it to an hour! Those of you who won’t be coming to Hamilton for this festival (and really, that’s 98% of my readers here) can assuage their trauma with the knowledge that this lecture will be a condensed version of the extended one I’ll be presenting next spring at the Avalon Centre, and most likely at Le Melange Magique as well, to celebrate the release of the hedge witch book.

Time for more jasmine tea, then it’s word-making. I think I’ll work on writing till noon, have lunch, then do a rough patch of the hearthcraft lecture from the bits in the book I want to focus on. Tomorrow I can add and remove things, make it pretty, then remove elaboration till all I have is a bulleted list of points to make and talk about. Okay, that won’t all happen tomorrow, but it will happen over the next couple of days. I’d do it from memory except I know that I wrote things down in the book that I won’t remember off the top of my head while drafting a lecture.

To work! And more jasmine tea!