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Worse than ideal, better than awful?

So Tas has hyperthyroidism. The average age of cats with hyperthyroidism is 13 years of age; A year ahead of average there, buddy.

Before K left, I'd made a list of EVERYTHING I could think of that had changed about Tas in recent years, to the point I even thought I was being overly-thorough. He'd drive you out of the house with what he'd leave in the cat box. His food made him start throwing up more than normal. (He's been a puker most of his life, delicate flower.) Turns out every single thing, even down to the hair clumps we've been having to cut off him recently, and other behaviors that we didn't even think about (becoming more vocal) are all symptoms. So who knows when this started. But the vet said his levels are high, but not scary high, perfectly manageable.

I am really fucking pissed that we went to that last vet, the one we hated, sometime, when, last year? complaining about a lot of this and she didn't even CONSIDER his thyroid, completely blamed his diet. He wasn't losing weight then, but except for difficulty breathing, he has pretty much every symptom on the list.

So three treatment options: Daily pills (for the rest of his life), radiation, surgery. We're starting with the pills. After I read that page I called K back and asked about the side effects: Methimazole may produce side effects in cats including depression, vomiting and lack of appetite. Apparently they'd discussed more severe side effects they'll be monitoring him for (low blood cell counts for one), but either they didn't mention that or, just as likely, K got info overload and it didn't register, but I asked him to go back and confirm the "common" side effects to expect so we don't freak. (And they did. So no changing his food now, wait a few months until we see how he handles the treatment.)

The good news is that all of his other blood work came back near-perfect. We have an INCREDIBLY healthy cat, especially for his age. Other than that. And the damn flea they found on him. Dammit. (HOW THE HELL DO INDOOR CATS GET FLEAS?!) So anyway, $16.50/month for the pills, we'll try that for a while and then discuss the cost/cat benefit of other treatments, which thankfully he is more than healthy enough to be able to handle, it sounds like.

Got lots of reading to do. K's not worried at all about giving Tas the pills (and he does have a way with Tas and being able to do things to him that no one else has ever mastered), so it's more a decision of what's best for him long-term. Could the pills cause harmful side-effects long-term? (Aside from the already-mentioned ones.) Could the surgery weaken him or cause other problems? Better or worse than making him radioactive for a few days, which oddly sounds like the most-gentle option? o.O Are there other things we can do along with this to help him stay healthy?

This sucks, but I feel better, it's a problem, but not a death sentence (or mystery illness). The vet seemed confident he's going to be around for a LONG time yet to come. And K loved them, which, well, given K's feelings about doctors and vets, is practically a miracle. And it sounds like he, the vet, (no idea who the "she" was he talked to earlier) has the exact mix of holistic vs western medicine, care, and love for animals and compassion for their parents that *I* want in a vet. K was there for two hours and most of that was interacting with them. Not just, "Ok, got the blood, here's the diagnosis, here's your bill, bye." (Honestly I was surprised they didn't have to send it out to a lab and make us wait.) Very focused on Tas's entire future life, not just this particular visit. And they did have a long talk about a more organic diet, not as much about canned food as making our own, at the very least to supplement organic canned food, which can apparently still leave them lacking in certain things. Just like I said, not just yet. Pill may make him puke, diet change may make him puke, we at least want to make it easier to guess why he's puking...

Treatment takes a bit to kick in, but the vet said that unless he has serious problems with the pills, which he's not expecting given how healthy he is, that we should notice a dramatic change back to our old cat in less than a month. ♥

Good kitty vibes please

K just called and let me know he booked an appointment for Tas at the vet today.

Tas (the grey one) lost a lot of weight recently. He's ALL OVER K, it's only recently that he's rediscovered that I'm good for snuggles as well, and one day he was lying on me and I realized I could feel his spine, ribcage, hip bones... Pixie had gained weight recently. K said he thought it was her stealing his food. We've been feeding him more, making sure he gets to lick our plates... It seems to have helped, a little...

He's acting 100% normal, very active, very happy, so I've been trying not to worry. (Partially motivated, I admit, by holy crap we can't afford vet bills right now.) But I've been worrying. And two, no, three friends now when I described his weight loss: "Yeah, that's how it started with ours too." And that fucking friend who stays with us sometimes. I'd mentioned a few months back how active and healthy Tas is (both of them are), how he acted like a cat half his age, that it was impossible for me to believe he's over 12 years old. (Pixie is ten.) Friend's comment, "Yeah, when it happens, it happens fast." That's just been echoing through my head the past few days. "When it happens, it happens fast." I want to go back in time and punch him in the face for ever letting those words hit my ears, but of course he didn't mean anything cruel. He wasn't putting a curse on them for god's sake. But last night I finally lost it. MY KITTY. He doesn't just feel skinny, he feels frail. There is SOMETHING going on here besides him just not eating enough.

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Anyway, vet appointment is at 3:30p, I'm going to make a list of EVERY LITTLE THING we've noticed about Tas since this started. I should just blow off the afternoon and go with. At least I know this vet isn't going to be pushing Science Diet on us. K said they talked for about half an hour about Tas (and Pixie) and the subject of diet did of course come up. Her comment was something like, "Well, yeah, I do have plenty of cats on store cat food, and they're fine, but organic IS better." Bonus they're also very close to our house, and a bunch of people I really trust with their animals like this place. We've been stuck since our last vet moved away, I really hope we've found a good one.

So good thoughts for our boy, please. Whatever is going on, hopefully it's simple, or at the very least, hopefully we caught it in time. He's lived longer than any cat I've ever had, but you'd never guess his age by the way he looks and acts. I refuse to accept that it's time to have to face that.

"Women Programmers"

So I read this article How to Be a ‘Woman Programmer’ and something about it just... IDK, bugged me. This is what I posted on FB:

I just don't get this... I hear about it enough, and I'd never claim it's not what these women have experienced, but it's just so foreign to me. I also started working with computers back when it was very much a "male field." I was generally the only or maybe one of two women in my early programming classes, but I was never looked at with anything other than maybe mild surprise when I walked into a classroom. I never had bosses or coworkers speak or act inappropriately to me. I've more than once had positions created for me when bosses realized I had the skills I do. I've led projects, I've led entire departments, and I now run a business where I've never had a potential client seem to care that not only am I female, as is most of my company, I'm pretty (so I'm told), with extremely long hair, piercings, and tend to dress like a hippie and refuse to use corporate-speak.

In my entire career, I've never felt hurt or helped by the fact that I'm female. Sure there have been times I've felt like I had to "prove myself" but in almost every case I can think of, it seemed to have nothing to do with my gender, just egos. (The "almost" was one new boss who insisted on giving me the "easy" projects starting out, but that BS got over so quickly that it was barely a blip compared to the rest of my career.) I wasn't even a couple years into my first job before I stopped thinking of myself as a "female programmer" and started just thinking of myself as a "programmer." But I read things like this and wonder, have I just been lucky? Or at some point, did I just start ignoring sexism (and thus can't recall experiencing it) knowing that my skills and intelligence would overcome any misgivings that anyone might have? Was it just that people didn't treat me differently because I wouldn't let them? I can be very stubborn that way. (Go ahead, doubt my abilities. I'll enjoy making you realize you're wrong.) Saying that feels so disrespectful to people who have had these experiences, but it's just so not been my own experience that I honestly wonder what's been different for me.

And part of what bothers me reading stuff like this is that, having experienced so little of this myself, I don't know if it's good to warn women they might experience it, or bad to make women expect that they will...

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I feel like I may really be opening a can of worms with that one, and especially one of my comments where I said, in part, "Sexism is such a touchy subject, because like any discrimination, while it certainly exists, if you look for it and expect it, you'll find it, often where it doesn't. I have worked with women who claimed discrimination when the real fact was that they just sucked at their jobs. If anything, I've met more women in my field who seemed to expect BETTER treatment for being female, which has always disgusted me. But that's not the majority by far. And again, I'm not doubting her story, or that of anyone else who claims discrimination, I just really wonder, if it's so prevalent, what it is about me or my... whatever... that seems to have sheltered me from it."

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In any case, women have always had a place in programming (Ada Lovelace, considered the first computer programmer, for example), and in the sciences in general. I've never felt anything but welcomed in the geek world. But that world has gone from being a subculture to pop culture. Maybe it just pains me to think it's become more sexist as a result.

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I'm not sure there's a word to describe the level of exhausted I'm currently feeling. It's almost fascinating in its complexity. Unfortunately it's that type of exhausted that wouldn't allow me to sleep. Too exhausted to sleep. I'm not even sure how that works.

Work has seriously got to give me a break. Although the good news is that my current condition is partially related to getting a much needed important new client with a seriously tight deadline. Bad news being that the frantic website building from a few weeks back that was immediately followed by the endless server migration is now going to be followed by more frantic website building. And that my and K's five-year anniversary is going to fall a few days before the due date, so no romantic holiday for us. *pout* Five years. I really wanted to do something nice for this.

Odd. Apparently I can write, but my reading comprehension is near zero. Are those different parts of the brain? Is it possible to break one but not the other? Now that K's home, I'm also realizing that speaking isn't working well. Nice to know I at least still have some option to communicate, if not to comprehend...

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I've had the lyrics for "How to save a life" by The Fray stuck in my head all afternoon. (The verses, not the chorus.) NOT helping with the whole "perky, motivated" thing I'm going for today.

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Wait, what?!

So, I had this dream this morning...

I was in a group of people standing outdoors in a medieval courtyard. There was a perky woman standing in front of us. "So, I know many of you have been wondering how we get the unique deep, rich red colors we offer in our premiere line of nail polishes. So we thought we'd show you a demonstration!" Two guards bring out a guy, dressed in rags, and lay him down, his head on a chopping block. (For those of you who have played Skyrim, almost a perfect visual recreation of the opening scene, but with fewer guards and no priest.)

THWACK!

"From this base, we add various natural pigments to create the variety of deep, rich shades of red you've all come to love. Next up, we've received many questions about how exactly we make our crackle polishes. We'll you're about to find out! Can I please get a volunteer from the audience?"

That was when K woke me up for coffee. I can't remember the last time I've been that happy to be woken up.

o.O

Laura, forgive me if I don't comment any more on your polish posts for a while... I don't want to know what they do for their glitter polishes either...

O.o

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There are few better feelings when you're feeling down than having a sleepy kitty pressing harder and harder against you like "Can't... snuggle... close... enough..." ♥

Time for play

Ok, it's 6p, I cannot think any more about work today. Been doing a lot of research for one specific project, wrote a couple of really icky emails to deal with a couple of icky client situations I don't feel like going into. I think ending with that was what really finished me. I have a talent for being really polite and business-like when I want to tell someone off, but the process scrambles my brain.

We've been playing a lot of Skyrim the past few months. I don't remember if I've even talked much about it on here, I was mostly spamming Facebook with comments. (As an aside, I kind of broke up with Facebook today. Not that I deleted my account, but I haven't been reading regularly in ages, haven't read at all recently, decided I should probably let people know this. I don't think anyone really cared... :-p) Anyway, Skyrim.

Playing on PS3 was driving me nuts because if there's one thing Bethesda does well it's writing buggy games. I finally gave in just after Christmas and bought it for the PC. Applying patches, getting all of the downloadable content... Fixing all the broken stuff and getting the extra stuff that is apparently never going to be available on PS3. Then I started installing mods. New houses, new towns, new quests, new characters, new animals. Realism mods that force me to eat and drink and make me actually have to dress for the weather. I've really done more playing with mods than I have playing the game. My character is something like level 22 and I think she's finished one quest, nothing to do with the main ones.

But one of the things K and I acknowledged we'd been doing for a while now that was contributing to our unhappy mental health was burying ourselves in video games, often until all hours of the morning. Especially easy now that we had a PC version and a PS3 version. And honestly, once the novelty of the mods wore off, I started getting a bit bored. I'd already played once and while I didn't do all the quests, I did enough that running into them was like, "Oh, crap, this one?" One of the things that came out of our camping was a firm promise to start living life again rather than playing a computer version of one.

And we've been good. But K still enjoys playing for a couple hours at a time and me, well, I made the mistake of first learning how to use the in-game console (where you can type in commands to do pretty much anything) and then starting a tutorial series for the creation kit. Yeah, I now have a hobby for the rest of my life. LOL I'm currently learning how to build a house. Last night K reminded me that if I'm going to sit there for half the night painstakingly going through a tutorial to learn how to set a table and put books on shelves that I should still play the game a little, you know, every now and then. ;-p

So I got my character up out of the chair she's been sitting in for about a week now, and set out to see if I could walk back to Windhelm without almost freezing to death like I did on the trip up. So on my way back, I see a mage getting attacked by a bear. One thing my character has learned is that running into a mage in the wild is just bad news. But I knew the bear would come after me next, so sorry, dead bear. I killed it fully expecting the mage to come after me next, because characters in this game are just awesome like that, when you save their lives and all.

Really, there's a point to this. He didn't come after me, he just kept walking. So I caught up to him, and it turns out that he's a Khajiit, a race I adore, pretty kitties, and from the dialog, I could tell he was there because of one of my seriously impressive mods that adds in a HUGE number of fully-voiced NPCs, some with the most long-winded and hilarious dialogue.

It turns out this Khajiit is a monk, and although his dialog is very much appropriate for Skyrim, it's also written such that I felt I was walking along with a Buddhist. I ended up taking him as a follower just so I wouldn't accidentally lose him. So the next hour of the game was pretty much us walking along, and him telling me some of the most awesome stories on topics like good and evil, the need to slow down, the meaning of happiness and how to know happiness... Seriously cool. (He also killed some bandits for me. :-p)

To end the evening, we ended up back at my treehouse (a mod - my character's a wood elf, she needed a treehouse) and I told him to relax, one of the other things this mod adds so your followers aren't just standing there staring at you. He wandered outside on to porch to check out the view. I hadn't been in this treehouse much, so I hadn't really noticed how incredible it was. So I'm staring at the mountains, and he was still telling me stories. Then he went quiet, and I looked around and he was gone, so I went to find him.

Asleep in my bed. Because why not? LOL

I have a portable bedroll, and yes, I used it to sleep on the floor rather than tell him to get the hell out of my bed. Last time I'd used it was when I was hanging out in a Khajiit camp. That time, the second I got up, before I had time to pick it up, one of the Khajiit jumped in it and went to sleep. Apparently even the sentient cats steal your beds. LOL

So anyway, previously I was not really playing the game because I was having more fun poking the game. Now I want to go back in and still not really PLAY the game and just sit down and listen to this character talk.

I think the thing these mods are best at is making you spend all your time playing Skyrim without actually playing Skyrim...

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Help... me...

I need to get up and Pixie is half-lying on me... snoring... Well, it's really more of a little moaning/squeaking noise. How could I possibly disturb THAT?!

Seriously, the amount of bladder discomfort caused by feline interference...

My brain works in weird ways...

So I got this odd idea in my head to write an RPG, not Cthulhu-like, but more of a creepy real-life type thing. Since I'm all "small shiny" and we'll be leaving any time now to be with K's family (not today, but I'm trying to at least make sure we're ready when packing time comes) I don't know if it'll go anywhere, but I started writing the intro of the actual story last night. I have to say, for a first draft I wrote when I was half asleep, I think it turned out pretty damn creepy.

I'm not posting it here to show off my writing, but I was greatly amused by K's reaction to it, which would make much less sense if I didn't include it. Like I said, I was half-asleep, and it's not heavily edited, so no red pens, please. ;-)

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So I read that to K, oh, around 2am, and he just gave me this LOOK. Even though I'd told him at the beginning that I'd written it, he asked me again, and even made me promise I'd made it all up. LOL I guess that would be a win? Or maybe stories are just scarier in the middle of the night, especially when they're talking about (fictional) events of the last few days...

Who knows, I probably stole the plot from a movie I don't remember. :-p

But wait, it gets funnier. So he was playing one of his video games, and I fell asleep on the couch, and woke up with a start when the power went out. (I'm trying to think what could have been providing light because I know I could see him. Actually I think we'd both fallen asleep on the couch and he'd just woken up before me, so it was probably the kitchen window.) Anyway, we both stared at each other wide-eyed for a few seconds until it came on, then blinked on and off a few more times before staying on. My own wide-eyed was from being startled awake, but I realized his had something to do with my story and laughed and said, "Well, that was creepy!" "Are you SURE you made all that up?" I laughed, told him yes, and said that apparently I need to write more when I'm in a half-asleep stupor. Then I went back to sleep.

He told me later that a while after I went back to sleep, he turned on the laptop and the internet was down. "If you made all that up, then I think you cursed us." LOL I asked him if he'd tried calling anyone, but he said no. Not sure if it was because of the time of day or because he really didn't want to know. :-p

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"Hello Wile E. Coyote. You don't know me, but I know you. I want to play a game. Here's what happens if you lose. There is a defective ACME rocket pack strapped to your back. When the timer goes off, it will explode. There is only one key to open the device. It is tied around the neck of the Road-Runner being held by Hugo the Abominable Snowman. ("I will love him, and hug him, and squeeze him, and call him George.") You must convince Hugo to allow the bird to escape through the painting of the door on the left wall and release you to take the bird's place in his arms before the timer runs out. Look around Wile E.. Know that I'm not lying. Better hurry up. Live or die, make your choice."

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It's all relative

I finally got K to wake up off the couch and go to the doctor a little after 1p after about two hours of me sitting there babysitting him to make sure he was still breathing and trying to wake him up periodically and only being able to get a closed-eyed "I'm fine, just a few more minutes" mumble out of him. (On top of all of his other head/chest symptoms, his cold(?) last night decided to add on a really painful ear infection.)

When I finally managed to wake him up for real, I got bitched out for not waking him up sooner. *sigh* You know, I'm fine with that. Stomping around, grumpy, getting dressed K is much better than unconscious, mumbling K.

And he REFUSED to let me take him, because I have so much work to do. (Because of that and also due to this headache that never went away yesterday, beyond answering a few emails, I wasn't managing anything but sitting on the couch with my laptop, listening to Pandora. Ear infection vs blinding headache, he's probably in a better condition to drive anyway.)

I'm happy to report now that I'm eating some soup, it's not making me nauseous (unlike yesterday any time I tried food), and I think it IS actually helping the headache.

If all of the above is what I have to use to decide if the rest of today is a "good day," I think it's going to be a good day...

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Well, the nap did... something...

The stomach-ache... moved... seeming to confirm that I am dealing in part with some sort of stomach thing and not some internal organ starting to explode. (I'm not sure it hurts less, but it's less bothersome hurting where it hurts now, if that makes sense.)

However the bad news is that it may have been chased further south by this headache and fever I seem to have developed. Goddammit.

Incidentally, except for the sore throat, my symptoms are nothing like K's, who can't stop coughing and told me at times it's seriously affecting his breathing. Not that he'll consider a doctor, because he says he feels better today than yesterday and thus must be slowly recovering. "Not that that's saying much, but I can breathe enough today that I don't feel like I'm going to black out." Wait, what?!

GOD I hope these are just different symptoms of the same thing and we're not going to swap/combine illnesses at some point in the coming days.

He did a much better job of falling asleep than I did during my nap. Mine was mostly tossing and turning and wishing Pixie would come back and snuggle. I'm going to make sure he's still breathing then curl up on the couch in front of the tv and be pathetic there.

So much for all that work I planned to get done today. At least I FINALLY got one project out of the way yesterday. I guess my company will still be there on Monday.

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Memories...

I just posted this in response to someone talking about being panhandled. (Having a homeless, generally drug-addicted or alcoholic person ask for money, if that term doesn't translate to other countries.)

Well, this was my first comment. "My ex, who lived in New York at the time, once had a guy say, 'Hey, can ya spare a coupla dollars? I wanna go buy a six pack and fuck a pretty white chick.' My ex gave him the money. LOL" I always loved that story. Gotta give the guy points for honesty! Anyway, this was what I followed up with:

When I worked in downtown Miami, I had this tall, thin black guy who'd be standing on a corner on my way to the Metrorail after work every day, healthy-looking, maybe in his 30s or early 40s, didn't look like an addict, every day cheerfully ask me for money. "Hey, how ya doin? Don't happen to have any spare change, do you?" Really friendly in a non-creepy way. Always smiling, always happy.

After a few days of this, I told him I got paid every Friday, and if he'd stop asking me, I'd give him the change from my pay every time I got paid. So every day after that, I got a friendly hello, how are you, never again a word about money. First time I gave him money, he walked with me to a food vendor and bought himself a snack. Next week, I gave him a bit extra and he bought a sandwich. At some point in there he told me, "You know, it can be dangerous down here. You shouldn't be walking all the way to the Metrorail by yourself." From then on, every day when I got off work, he'd get up and walk me to the Metrorail (not just on Fridays), probably losing a decent bit of money during that 5p, work's over prime time. Sometimes I'd give him extra money. He'd always buy food. Sometimes I'd bring him food. That Thanksgiving I brought him a whole bag of it, which he said he'd share with his friends.

His name was Reggie. We talked about all kinds of things. Where he'd lived. Why he was homeless. (Not drugs, or alcohol, he'd just fallen on hard times and realized that at least at that point in his life, it made him feel a certain kind of freedom to sleep wherever he wanted, go wherever he wanted, not have to worry about "things.") About how he'd spent Hurricane Andrew huddled in the deepest building entrance he could find with some of the other people who lived down there. That 10m walk to the Metrorail every afternoon was usually the nicest part of the entire day of working in that dreary area.

I always wonder what happened to him. Twenty years later, I still think about him. Still remember his name. Sometimes, on very rare occasions, giving up that spare change can really be worth it. :-)

I wonder if he remembers me as well as I remember him. Wherever Reggie is, I hope he's doing well, and that life never managed to ruin that wonderful, happy personality of his.

Ok, wait just a f*cking minute

After posting that last update, I got this: "Your password cannot contain symbols such as @,_, (),etc. Your password is too easy to guess."

Um, no, my password is very much NOT easy to guess, and part of the reason is because it contains "certain symbols." At least it didn't force me to change it. Yet. (And the link to the password rules FAQ, that hasn't been recently updated if this is a new requirement, suggests to use special characters. Have they just randomly ruled out a few of them?)

NOW my internet services are making me irritable.

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Ch-ch-ch-changes...

So does my stylesheet not apply to the new friends page? I almost never visit my own journal and I rather liked the more soothing than BRIGHT WHITE color.

And WTF internet? LJ rolls out new pages (which at least are optional), and Fastmail, my email provider, completely sprung a new AJAX interface on everyone today, much to the SEVERE dismay of some very upset forum users. (A new interface is one thing, a new interface with missing features and no documentation is another.) At least with LJ, switching back and forth is a click, I have no complaint there. In Fastmail, it's logging out, choosing the "classic" interface, then choosing ANOTHER option to... double-enable? the classic interface, before logging in. But according to people in the forum, a couple of things no longer work there either.

Oh, and both have the infinite scrolling. I don't specifically mind that, it's just a bit... odd.

P.S. LJ, if you're going to be redesigning the post form, can you please, please center it? Yes, some of us with widescreen monitors do browse with our browsers maximized.

P.P.S. Someone I know here made the news. :-)
http://www.dailydot.com/news/livejournal-shut-down-us-office/

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Motivation: Zero

I set a goal for myself to do a very thorough cleaning of our bedroom and bathroom today. (Also discovered a secret: Telling K I want him to bleach the bathtub for me because I'm allergic will prompt him to start working on the RV. I need to come up with unpleasant chores for him more often, he got a lot done today! ;-)

So we have one of those big "bookcase" style headboards (bookcase, cubbyholes, whatever) on our bed. It weighs about a million pounds and we never actually attach it to the bed frame. I'd pulled it up and tipped it on to the bed to unplug something from the very inconvenient outlet back there when I noticed something... odd... Google confirmed it was a huntsman spider egg sack. On the wall. Behind our bed. Just a couple of feet from where we sleep. FROM OUR HEADS.

I'll skip the play-by-play freakout I did on Facebook and just say that K removed it, and found it was full of dead babies. (Which explains why there wasn't a very protective mom sitting on it guarding it like in every single damn photo I found during my very brief Google search to verify my suspicions of what this was.) He thinks the exterminator may have whacked it last time he was here and sprayed back there. Still, he easily agreed to my insistence that we dismantle and check the entire bed before I will ever sleep in it again. (And he finished that before I even finished this post. He's in there with a vacuum now.)

And cue full-on spider-related anxiety attack. I've gotten used enough to seeing the big spiders that I handle that well enough these days. Apparently that coping ability doesn't extend to thoughts of having hundreds of them hatch all over our bed while we sleep.

So much for all of that cleaning, I can't even walk into the bedroom without shaking and starting to feel nauseous. Talk about moments Xanax was made for. Now that I'm calming down a bit, I feel like I'm going to burst into tears. I can't look at anything in the house without thinking of it as a potential spider hiding place. Phobias are incredibly stupid and annoying. Padded rooms don't have places for spiders to hide, do they?

And I had a brown widow (I hope, it could have been a recluse) crawl over my bare foot earlier when I was in the garage. That didn't even get an "eep" out of me, I just made K step on it. I was so proud.

I fucking hate Florida.

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Github

Can anyone help me wrap my brain around trying to use Github for contributing to MODX? It's pretty sad that I've probably patched half the reported bugs in the thing myself but can't figure out how to submit them...

Here's their starting instructions:
http://rtfm.modx.com/display/community/Community+Contributor%27s+Guide

I got a Github account and downloaded the appropriate software.
I forked the MODX Revolution project into my account.
I cloned that locally.
I added the "upstream" remote.

So I now have a copy of the code, along with a _build directory and a .git directory. Here's where I'm stuck. How do I work on the code?

I know it involves checking out and merging code, but I can't find the "for dummies" in-between part. MODX runs on a web server. If I configure Apache on my own computer to point to this directory and install MODX, then it'll add new directories to what I've downloaded. If I'm working on a feature, how do I point the browser at that specific version of the code?

And what's the protocol for submitting things? I added a small feature last night (that people have been asking for for two years - it was two lines of code!) but in doing so, I found a bug that required adding the entire section of code to a second file. Is it best to add the old version of the code and submit that as a fix, then add my new feature to my bug-fixed version as a separate submission?

It's been years since I've used versioning software and even then, it didn't work like this. I do find it funny that I'm trying to do something as awesome as patch core files for a huge, established CMS project, but I feel like I'm back at "intro to computing" as far as actually submitting code changes...

Anyone able to hold my hand a bit?

Edit: Ok, this provides a bit more info:
http://rtfm.modx.com/display/revolution20/Git+Installation

Guess this is the point where I try it an see what happens... (I'm not even sure what to call these branches. "In which I fix the bug where form customization constraints are ignored for template variables" seems a bit clunky. :-p Maybe I should find a big report first? I know this is tied-in with their bug-tracking site somehow...) The more I look at this, the more confused I'm getting. Can't I just patch the code and email it to someone? *shakes head* I wanna be a big girl coder, dammit! Help?

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I hate K's new Droid. The touch screen is awful (it's pretty much impossible to use the onscreen keyboard by swiping), the case is clunky, and for whatever reason, he can NEVER hear it ring. (No, he's not just ignoring me, he's missed other important calls.) It also randomly seems to go into vibrate mode, randomly call people, randomly turn on Google navigate... The other night someone called and when he unlocked it to answer, the ring vibration got stuck on and locked up his phone. We had to pull over on the side of the road and get a flashlight to figure out how to open the case and get the battery out so it went back to "phone" from "sex toy." Seriously, stay away from the Casio. I don't care how tough it is if nothing else works right.

Anyway, we installed SeekDroid on it a while back, which is a remote locator app, and has all kinds of other features for when your phone gets stolen. (Remote wipe, etc.)

One such feature is an alarm. You can make the phone let out this ear-piercing squeal and display a message. I threatened that if he ever repeatedly ignored/missed my calls, that I was going to use that. He said no problem.

So, I've been trying to call him half the day with no answer. Finally decided to see how well the alarm worked. Quite well apparently. He thought he'd set off the fire alarm where he was working. Scared the crap out of him. LOL

(He also found out he'd missed a bunch of other calls besides me. Seriously, if the alarm is capable of being heard over his drill, you'd think one of the ringtones would be. Not that that's going to make him very popular with people...)

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Seriously, TopCoder?

I've been getting TopCoder emails for years and finally accepted today that I'm not going to be going back any time soon, so I tried to unsubscribe. This required me to log in. Apparently I'd forgotten my password, so I got the reset link, went to reset it, and got, "Your password may contain only letters, numbers and -_.{}[]()." Seriously?

To change my email address, I have to go back through the entire registration process.

Maybe they should hire one of these master programmers who compete on their site to update their own site a bit...?

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Alice
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