zeborah: Zebra with stripes shaking (earthquake)
Have now three times paw-held Boots through the process of opening the catflap towards her. I'm not sure she quite gets what I'm on about; further experimentation required.

Late afternoon today Dad picked me up and we went shopping for a new television, after ascertaining that the reason there's a gap in my bedroom floor is that the house has probably shifted 1cm or so on its foundations.

Despite the fact that (for some obscure reason) shops seem to be selling out of TVs at the moment, we found a nice new one. In the store it looked tiny because of course it was surrounded by all the big dollar ones, but being a 26" LCD screen it's a significant upgrade on my old second-hand CRT monster (now occupying the cat's armchair for insurance purposes) and will fit nicely in the space I have when I get around to securing it there. This might be some months because it's the space next to the living room brick fireplace which is also not exactly where it used to be and needs to be either repaired or pulled down and in the meantime is rather dusty. So while waiting 4-6 months for an assessment and probably more months for actual action, the TV is sitting safely on the floor, in front of some cupboard doors, one of which is stuck open and the other of which is stuck closed.

We got everything connected up and proved that the DVD player and hard drive recorder are working. So over dinner I played the episode of Queen Seondeok that I recorded on the 21st February. Have located the remainder of the series (which I calculate would have finished airing here last night) online, but looking at the size of the files I'll have to watch my bandwidth and eke them out a bit.

In the meantime, I can watch all the DVDs! I'll just have to pick them up off the floor first.

Goodness, if I spend any more time in this room, I might really start tidying it up. That'd be perilously close to moving on.

I'm being encouraged by Sisters In The Know to apply for a Red Cross hardship grant on account of how I had no water for a week. Originally I'd planned not to since, while this certainly resulted in hardship, it didn't involve any financial hardship and I thought they should keep the money for people who did need it; all I'd do with it would be to redonate it to charity, which seemed needless paper-shuffling. But apparently due to the amount of money they've raised and the ways they get audited and so forth it is not at all undesirable to apply for it and even makes sense to be a conduit to funnel money from that fund into some other fund that's able to help people more seriously affected.

(If I apply I'll almost certainly get it. My Sisters In The Know reckon even if I ticked every box "no" I'd still get it simply on the grounds of living in the suburb I live in. That actually makes sense whether this is how they mean it or not: due to all the cheaper grocery shops nearby being closed, the cost of food here is up.)
Oh Boots, if you chew the powercord to the new television I will be quite unhappy with you.
zeborah: Zebra in grass smelling a daisy (gardening)
In no particular order:

The #eqnz Twitter feed is full of people with amazingly original ideas about earthquakes and volcanoes that could not possibly have already occurred to actual geologists. <head-desk>

In addition to my ordinary hayfever skinrash I get from grass-seeds when weeding, I've discovered that one of the bushes that needs regular pruning gives me an instant rash if its leaves touch my neck. I ended up fleeing straight to the bathroom, stripping, and taking a thorough shower, plus taking antihistamines. All calmed down now.

Having got hold of the local Korean TV channel, I'm watching their marathon catch-up of Queen Seondeok. The protag Deokman has spent 20-odd episodes disguised as a guy (army trainee), looking mostly like a girl disguised as an army trainee. Now for the first time she dresses in a princess's clothes and looks... exactly like a guy dressed in a princess's clothes, 너무 귀엽다.

Google Translate's "did you mean" suggestion is awesome; that's a phrase I only heard spoken so didn't know the correct spelling.

One of my drains is blocked by a dead hedgehog.
zeborah: Zebra against a barcode background, walking on the word READ (read)
Digital TV is awesome. So is being on holiday. Unfortunately Chinese TV (WTV, channel 28) doesn't have any readily discoverable programme, but I talked to a colleague at work and she's told me all the timeslots she knows of that have Korean sageuk. <bounce>

The channel also has a learn-Chinese segment at 2:40pm which is... actually way too advanced for me: I've never been at a stage where the words for "pumice" and "sinkable wood" and various east Asian trees are the most important gaps in my knowledge and I couldn't follow the conversations at all. The 这是不是。。。呢 and 这会不会是。。。呢 structures they briefly touched on were more my level. OTOH it does bring back a few of the words I learned at uni, so. I'll probably keep watching for the rest of my holiday, but don't think I'll bother recording it after that.

After that segment is over, I change the channel to Māori TV for their 3pm learn-Te Reo segment, which is just about perfect for my level. At one point they mentioned homework and going to the website; I went to the website and couldn't find the homework, but I did find the video summaries of the previous 200+ episodes of the series, and I'm now downloading them to my iPod for revision (one by one; there doesn't seem to be an rss feed; oh well). Yesterday I also watched Te Kaea (news) which is in Te Reo with English subtitles. (Oh, and a bit about the building of the marae at Waiariki Polytech, which ditto. And sidebar: I'm now trying to work out what the excuse of the opposition was for resisting the addition of a kitchen. I'm not surprised that there was Pākehā resistance in the slightest, but what excuse could they possibly come up with? A marae without a kitchen seems to me like a building without a doorway. When you welcome people onto the marae, you have the pōwhiri and then you eat. If the marae didn't have a kitchen, how would the tangata whenua feed the manuhiri? Does not compute!) This is also about right for my level: it keeps me following along enough to familiarise me with the words I just recognise, and confirm/correct my understanding of their meanings, whereas without subtitles I wouldn't know what was happening so would get bored and tune out.


In other learning-something-new-everyday news, I've taken up scambaiting again. (It's a lot more convenient now that Google lets you be logged into three accounts at once. Also I'm on holiday, so I don't know how long I'll keep it up once I'm back to work, we'll see; though I hope I can, because the first week of a scam hardly wastes any of their time since they're just running off a script still anyway.)

Anyway this morning I got an email stating that:
my sister [...] will be coming with me to your country because i am her father and the only family she has now
which, once I switched out of the "mock the mugu" headspace that makes fighting crime so much more efficient, I decided must mean something like "male head of household / legal guardian" or somesuch.


The only problem with the Freeview digital decoder is that when it's on standby it makes a quiet whirring noise which sometimes you don't notice and sometimes you can't not notice it and it drives you up the wall.
zeborah: Map of New Zealand with a zebra salient (Diddums)
Usage Summary for your current monthly billing period which ends on 11 Oct 2009: You have used 3.61 GB which is 72% of your monthly traffic allocation. You have 1.39 GB left in your current monthly usage cycle.

(I've watched more Korean historical drama than I normally would in a month.)

Given:
  1. A TV episode is approximately 385MB, call it 400MB to allow for overhead.
  2. There are 2 more episodes in the Iljimae series I'm watching.
  3. There are 2 more episodes of Criminal Minds before the 11th October.
  4. Being able to talk about a TV programme with USans on the day it airs is infinitely more fun than coming to the conversation 3 months later.
Should I:
  1. Watch Iljimae now and delay on at least one of the Criminal Minds episodes?
  2. Watch Criminal Minds as it airs and delay on Iljimae?
  3. Watch Iljimae and Criminal Minds and switch to text-only browsing for everything else for the rest of the month?
  4. Pay some stupid amount to add another 5GB to my monthly allowance, of which I'll probably only end up using 100MB anyway?
(I'm leaning towards c. Though I really should be doing other stuff this weekend: I promised to write a pseudo-journal article for a library zine, and a linkdump for the Outer Alliance Blog, and I need to put together a presentation, and I'm trying to help add stuff to the Carl Brandon Wiki, and I've got my sister coming over to be writer-buddies, which time I'll probably use for my overdue taxes, and there's visiting parents, and running the projector at church, and shopping and laundry and window-cleaning, and I'm pretty sure I'm missing something. <thinks> Oh yeah, Daylight Saving is making away with the hour of 2am, and I did want to catch up on some sleep.

(But Iljimae! And Criminal Minds!)
zeborah: Map of New Zealand with a zebra salient (Stressed)
(In a good way, as far as I'm concerned: I like it when fiction makes me feel like I've been punched in the gut.)

Spoilers follow for Dae Jang Geum, Damo, and Iljimae

The main thing these three series have in common -- aside from the reason I selected them, which is that they're all set sometime in the Chosun dynasty -- is that they all involve plot arising from Corrupt Government Officials messing with the hero(ine)(s)' parents; and people going into hiding; and the resultant identity tangles. Also, apparently, a firm belief in the "What's the worst thing that could happen to my protagonist right now?" method of plotting.

Spoilers for Dae Jang Geum )

Damo and Iljimae begin with a flash-forward, then go back to the noble parent being killed by Corrupt Government Officials, then slowly work their way forward through the tangle of long-lost siblings. So much potential for comedy, so much potential for tragedy.

Spoilers for Damo )

Spoilers for Iljimae )

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