July 7th, 2006

krazy koati

And sail the accountancy

Today ended up a quieter day, at least for me, in that most of the fuss was done by and around other people. The big work was moving other people's things, which was a fine moment for on-the-spot comedy (``Let's take these empty boxes and put them right into the U-Haul trailer''), although not so very many pieces that are funny if you weren't there. The U-Haul trucks and such had for some states panels about Secret Species, although the Wisconsin one just had cows, which are not very secret.

And we caught a couple of perfectly silly pieces of television, such as the episode of The Next Generation which introduced the Pakleds and showed just why Riker suddenly stopped getting offers of his own starship. This was the first time findra had seen the episode, so we had a tough time trying to keep our silly dialogue from drowning out the episode's silly dialogue. Then a couple of Knight Rider episodes reminded us of just how lovably shoddy this show was. The first episode had a bad guy work, at great length, to pull an otherwise uninterested Michael Knight into a position where Michael and KITT could foil him. The second took about twenty minutes to get started and involved a conspiracy deep in the military installation of the UCLA campus to sell tactical nuclear weapons to unfriendly powers, which I'm sure we don't do anymore. We wrapped up with Silent Running, which gives the audience stunning imagery and a powerful mood, while still making it want to kill itself. It may all sound pretty trivial, but it served a good part of keeping spaceroo from liquefying under pressure, and let some more details on the bachelor party get sorted. That should be tomorrow's panic.

Trivia: Project Vanguard's Minitrack satellite tracking system had its stations laid out north-south along the 75th meridian. Source: Spaceflight Revolution: NASA Langley Research Center from Sputnik to Apollo, James R Hansen. NASA SP-4308.

Currently Reading: Shadows In the Sun, Chad Oliver. It's a severely anthropological piece, about the discovery of an incredibly average small Texan town, and makes your average Clifford Simak novel look kinetic. There's a long note at the front for teachers and parents explaining that science fiction can too be educational, and it notes an ``IRS Passage'' on page 72. Based on the number of words in that passage pronounced and understood (separate measures), it predicted whether the book would be enjoyed by students reading for their own pleasure, or whether they'd need some encouragement or motivation, or whether they just wouldn't get it. It makes for interesting bookends to a very essay-like novel.