This may or may not be helpful to other people. I recently finally went off of birth control pills. I've been on them for so long it just didn't even occur to me that it might be time to stop at age 51, but my doctor said yes, it really is time to stop. So I've been off them for several months now. So far it hasn't been too bad except for the night sweats. I haven't had any day time hot flashes so far. And maybe I get a little more weepy over silly things, but it's hard to tell. I've always cried pretty easily. But it occured to me shortly after I stopped taking them, that maybe, just maybe, the BC pills might have been responsible for my red wine headaches. I've done a few experiments so far, slowly building up to drinking a full glass of red wine. And I'm so happy to find that YES, getting rid of the BC pills was the key! Originally I couldn't stand red wine, but then I learned to love it, but I also realized after a while that it was responsible for these god-awful headaches I was getting in the middle of the night. So I gave up red wine entirely (not even doing a tasting) for the last couple of years. I'm so happy that now I can not just smell the deliciousness of red wine, but actually go back to drinking it. It's a weird subject, but maybe there are some more of you out there that gave up red wine and don't realize that maybe you're at a point now to try it again. Cheers!

Menopause is one of the weirdest things. I don't think our generation considers it a taboo subject the way previous ones did, but WOW they didn't tell us anything. They suffered.... and kept it from their daughters. Those morons. Go, you! Talking about it and finding out that there are upsides to "the change"! Enjoy your wine!!

The new laundry machines installed yesterday. The cycle-finished chime is very German. 

I love that little all-purpose laundry / pantry nook thingy! What a neat way to make use of a funkily-angled wall. Bonus points for kitteh!

What does a German chime sound like?

Matt (mah beau) had a brandy-new Zojirushi washing machine in his old apartment, and it would play a little song when the wash cycle finished. The first time we heard it, we were like, "Oh, this is kinda cute..." it had this hummable little sing-songy tune. And then we realized it had a B section and a bridge. That thing was *composed.* :)
The washer says "Beeeeee-BEEP" as in ACHTUNG! There's a button to turn it off if you don't need to know the cycle is done, though.

Our Zojirushi rice maker sings twinkle-twinkle!
Sean M Puckett 12/5edited
I too was curious about the German chime, but now I'm ALSO curious about a composed "You're wash is done." tune.
That bright light up top makes me think this is the mother ship and the cat explorer is reporting for duty.
Our Py-Py is also known as Py-Py, Cat Scientist. He seems like a space cadet, and then he'll spend 20 minutes working VERY HARD to science out the front door. We could smell the smoke coming out of his wittle ears. He knew the knob was important but never quite got it.

Block print. Stars are glittery but that don't photograph well. 

bonus Spike!

Excellent work! Don't forget to recharge Spike.
With the dry air, petting him is a shocking affair; no cables required.
So kind.
What material are you carving out?
This is high density craft foam glued to Masonite panels for sturdiness.
Nice! Your block prints are so wonderfully expressive, very moving. Something about the choices you make when cutting.

I'd love to see a picture of the block and the print side by side.
So, so, so cool!

A day of highs and lows. In and out all day cooking and going to Thanksgiving dinners. Came home to find my dog Scout can't or won't stand. He's been ill for some little while. I just had to make the arrangements to put him down tomorrow. I already don't like Black Friday. This is just going to add to my resentment.

Peace to you and Scout.
I'm so sorry to hear it.
Oh man Ray. I'm so sorry. That just sucks.
This is a beautiful picture of Scout. What a good dog.
Thank you all. It was hard to come to grips with, but once it was done it felt right. My vet anesthetizes and then give the euthanasia drugs. He slipped away immediately as soon as the euthanasia drugs hit his system. Almost as if he was waiting for permission to go.

Oh, Ray... this is such sad news. I'm so, so sorry to hear about Scout. I know how much you loved him, and from the stories you've told me, it's clear he loved his person very much, too. Good recognizes good.

Thank you for giving Scout such a happy life and a compassionate transition. Your vet sounds really wonderful and caring.

What a very good boy.
I'm so sorry Ray.
Paul Lord 11/30
Aw man. My condolences, friend. <3
Karen 12/1

Did you ever eagerly await an album by a favorite musician that was such a disappointment that not only did it sour you on subsequent releases, but also caused you to more skeptically analyze their previous work, as you wonder if you ever really liked it as much as you thought you did?

Oh yes. Who's the culprit this time?
In chronological order, from most recent, Sleater-Kinney, Toadies, Pearl Jam, Arcade Fire. In general, they survive, but it's still a shock.
rone 11/29
The Center Won’t Hold is so bad it made Janet quit. :super sad face:
Wow. I had not read that. Just wow.
yeah, that is some bullshit. one of the 3 or 4 greatest living rock drummers and they run her out of the group. idiots.
Weezer? The Pixies?
Never liked Weezer, Pixies have been uneven forever.
rone 11/29
the most recent Vampire Weekend album did this for me.

So this picture is from... ahem... a while ago. I was a big fan of the shirt (thanks to Jill "xtingu" Knapp for that!) and I went to look up a precise translation online. Google had nothing for me at the time.

Then I looked it up again a few years after that - still nothing.

I just did a Google Search again after stumbling on the image for the first time in a while and the top half a page or so is all a series of links to direct translations of this specific phrase. That just seems impressive to me.

These are the things I think about sometimes. I think I may need a hobby.

This makes me extremely happy.
There's a phrase that needs the Castellar font.
What a great shot. :)
Karen 11/24
It's sure is from a fun era. Miss Knapp's zest is infectious in the best possible way.

Today I learned that a last name like mine (Harris Friel) is known as a double barreled surname.

I will be sure to use this information the next time they can't find my prescription at CVS and try to shame me for not allowing myself to be absorbed into patriarchal standards of naming conventions. 

You have MORE IDENTIFICATION. It should make it EASIER.
Here’s where it gets ugly. My insurance company says that my last name is Friel, because I get my health insurance via marriage to Vince. My identification has my entire full name. Pennsylvania is awesome and let me do that, out of exhaustion and rage over the whole thing. But, my first and middle name are printed on line 1, and my last name on line 2, so when most people read it, they assume that my middle name is my last name.

So, when my prescription is filled, my doctor’s office says my surname starts with an H, but the pharmacy files the prescription under F. And because my middle name starts with a Y, they always start on the wrong foot with, “we don’t have anything with that name.”
Seriously. The Spanish like to string all their family names together too. It's by no means new, and also, it's 2019? Have they been living under rocks?

Thank you for alerting me to Leone:

I must share this info with my Names You Might Enjoy group.
Heh. I found this out by reading the Wikipedia entry for Sacha Baron Cohen. His grandfather added “Baron” to the surname.

By the way, this is exactly what goes through my head every time someone insists on hyphenating my last name or not leaving a blank space in between. Fucking databases, I swear to Dog.
Ooh, and I found out that OPW won’t force me to hyphenate! I can have blank spaces in the name field! YAY!
You're welcome!
Wow. I don't have your level of suffering at all. Two of my kiddos do have double middle names, spaced with no hyphens, so occasionally someone tries to take the second middle name and hyphenate it with the last name [giant eye roll]. It's mostly airlines that screw it up, which normally doesn't matter much until we're traveling out of country with a passport (which has the correct order of things). Then the airlines have to reissue the whole ticket. Big nuisance.
May your kids never, ever, ever, have to apply for SSI. That is where they git ya.
Well... eventually they'll turn 65... I hope.
Anne Mollo 11/24edited

My trusty steed Ki-Rin-Tin-Tin was killed by a wand of death.
Then I managed to explode my bag of holding, my two primary weapons, and quite a lot of other useful things.
And Ki-Rin-Tin-Tin-Too was disintegrated by a black dragon!
So I limped onward, no longer a mounted knight but determined as ever.
"The guardian Angel of Lugh will not accept the name Cool Hand of Lugh."
I went to my reward with 3285282 points, happy just to have made it.

O my stars, they are still iterating on the game
They are iterating both it and several wildly differing variants:
* nethack the original, v3.6.1 and counting.
* unnethack - kitchen sink of additions, harder than vanilla, very actively developed.
* Slash'em/Slash'em Extended/SlashThem - I play this one a lot, basically 3.4.3 with new roles, races, monsters, artifacts, longer dungeon, shorter Gehennom. Kinda hard. Playing as a Vampire wizard is super fun. Playing as a Doppleganger is OP AF. Dev seems stalled for most of these subvariants.
* dNethack - new and actively changing as we speak, new mechanics for almost everything, WAY harder monsters, new roles that are basically impossible to ascend, Elbereth replaced with a series of Wards and spirit bindings that convey an intrinsic but only if you don't break conduct...easily the most complicated and difficult of the current variants. You can play as an android or a convict or a time traveler from the future who doesn't know why he has all these crazy plasma weapons etc.
* FiqHack - mostly UI and QoL improvements...didn't do much for me.
* GruntHack - intended to be harder; can't say, never tried it.

I think that's the major ones? AceHack and NitroHack got folded into one or more of those...NetHack4 became FiqHack I think...NetHack Fourk might be active.

Still a great (set of) game(s).
Paul Lord 11/22 has NetHack 3.6.2, using a very convenient interface so you don't have to download or install anything. But now I need to play a time traveller? Aw, man. appears to have many of the variants Paul listed.
Brian Rapp 11/23edited
Hm, getting unstable connectivity to that variant site, it seems.
OH MY STARS AND GARTERS I can watch random people play nethack this is so much better than playing nethack

Printed tote bag. 

The design I wrote with a calligraphy brush then turned it into a printing block.  The ink is regular artist acrylic white, ultramarine and primary magenta with some thinned retarder to make it more fabric compatible. Mixed into a gradient on a glass palette with a wide brayer. 

Good job!