February 8th, 2013


[links] Link salad takes a hit and its mind goes ping

The Acts of Whimsy cancer fundraiser is still live. It has made goal, but additional support is always welcome, especially given my new complications. Please check it out if you have not done so yet.

A final update from Waterloo Productions on their Kickstarter — Including a video segment I find very hard to watch. Last day for the Kickstarter, so if you were considering giving, go now.

Con or BustHelping Fans of Color Attend SFF Cons. Consider contributing or supporting through bids. Ghu knows we need more diversity in the field.

The World SF Travel Fund — Another worthy cause, for a slightly different flavor of diversity.

Two Guys and Guy on the price of literary success — Heh.

Dilbert on the 10,000 hours of practice required for excellence — Well, duh.

Grammar police: Vibrating pen warns of handwriting mistakesA specialized pen under development is designed to catch writing mistakes and vibrate as a warning. Could it revive the dying art of handwriting? I can think of some entertaining abuses of this thing... (Snurched from James Aquiline.)

Wi-Fi “as free as air”—the totally false story that refuses to dieJournalism goes wrong and just keeps getting worse. No free wi-fi for you! (Via David Goldman.)

Facebook is malware, people suddenly realize

Fat Dads’ Epigenetic LegacyChildren with obese fathers show epigenetic changes that may affect their health.

Cancer reprograms immune cells to avoid an attackCause a specific type of white blood cell to change its identity.

Superomniphobic Material Vigorously Repels All Fluids — (Snurched from Daily Idioms, Annotated.)

Moth Drives Robot, Cruising for a LadyThe insect’s mate-seeking behavior could help researchers program self-driving robots to track airborne chemicals. — I've been on dates like that.

"Aggressive Pizza-Stealing Dog" Makes Bail — Ah, Oregon.

The Sockeye’s Secret Compass — Magnetic fish?

Asteroid to Make Closest Flyby in HistoryResearchers keeping an eye on trajectory that will bring it within 18,000 miles of Earth. Recorded history, to be more accurate.

35 Ancient Pyramids Discovered in Sudan Necropolis

Dinosaur extinction: Scientists estimate 'most accurate' dateScientists believe they have determined the most precise date yet for the extinction of dinosaurs.

A Cheap and Easy Plan to Stop Global WarmingIntentionally engineering Earth’s atmosphere to offset rising temperatures could be far more doable than you imagine, says David Keith. But is it a good idea?

Marco Rubio: Another Senator Who Doubts Global WarmingRubio goes on, saying, “I understand people say there’s a significant scientific consensus on that issue, but I’ve actually seen reasonable debate on that principle.” Actually, no he hasn’t. There has been no reasonable debate, at least not from the deniers, who for the overwhelmingly most part are not climate scientists, who twist data, who leave out critical information, who use cherry-picked graphs, and who resort to outrageous ad hominems to cast doubt on the reality of global warming. Rhat's because he's a conservative. "Reasonable debate" means to a Republican, "anything which might support my ideological convictions, no matter how false or outrageous." Rubio probably does know better, but he also knows that telling the truth will cost him vote in the lunatic asylum that is the Republican base.

Tendency to fear is strong political influenceEducation, they found, had an equally large influence on out-group attitudes, with more highly educated people displaying more supportive attitudes toward out-groups and education having a substantial mediating influence on the correlation between parental fear and child out-group attitudes. Which is precisely why conservatives work so very hard to stunt public education, and control as much of the process as they can.

A Short Note on Mormon Theology and Transgender Identities

Choose Now. Which Side of History Will You Be On? — I wish every conservative in America would read this article. (Snurched from Slacktivist Fred Clark

New Rove Effort Has G.O.P. AflameTheir battle with Democrats will have to wait. For now, Republicans have their hands full fighting one another. The party of "legitimate rape" is trying to purge its cranks and bigots. Which would leave the GOP small enough to hold its national convention inside a Denny's restaurant. Whither the poor, neglected angry white man so beloved of generations of GOP pols?

The Persistence of Racial Resentment — Without racism fueling angry white men, the GOP would not exist as a meaningful political party.

QotD?: Will your heart pump? Will your blood sing?

Writing time yesterday: 0.75 hours (1,000 words on a spec novella to 3,000 words, plus some WRPA)
Hours slept: 7.25 hours (fitful)
Body movement: 0.5 hours stationary bicycle
Weight: 230.2
Number of FEMA troops on my block protecting women from violence: 0
Currently reading: Mort by Terry Pratchett


[food|photos] Dinner at Olympic Provisions

Last night, on a prompt from [info]mlerules, Lisa Costello and went to dinner at the southeast Portland location of Olympic Provisions. That place was hardcore warehouse chic, and wow was it good. We focused our meal on charcuterie and cheese. Mmm mmm mmm.

My New Favorite Door
My new favorite door

The Side Dishes
The side dishes, house pickled olives and fried almonds

The Cheese Plate
The cheese plate, including a goat's milk gouda, Cowgirl Mount Tam, and a French bleu

The Charcuterie Plate
The charcuterie plate, various varieties of chorizo and Spanish ham

The Whole Megillah
All of it together, plus some nice artisanal bread

Photos © 2013, Lisa Costello and Joseph E. Lake, Jr.

Creative Commons License

This work by Lisa Costello and Joseph E. Lake, Jr. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.


[cancer] Field notes from Cancerland, off week edition

The genomic sequencing

Yesterday Dad and I had a long teleconference with one of the executives from the consulting service that will be doing the primary analysis of the genomic sequencing data. I plan to make a full post on that later, but for now, Dad and I are still collating our notes on this complex conversation. The net takeaway was that my previously expressed understanding of the goals of the genomic sequencing is essentially correct, but now I have a lot more details about the process, and a better understanding of the expected outcomes.

I also have a little more hope, though this is still a long shot. Basically, the universe of addressable drug targets is a lot wider than I expected it to be, which means there are more opportunities to make this process work well for my personal survival. Plus the gentleman in question was entertaining, informative and pretty cool dude.

It continues to appear that I am one of the very first people to source this particular diagnostic path privately. Up until now, it's all been academic or corporate research science. So I guess I am on the cutting edge in more than one sense. Thank you again to everyone who made this possible through the Acts of Whimsy fundraiser.

Watch for more information, including both my detailed write-up on the recent call, and a very interesting announcement tying all this to the forthcoming San Antonio Worldcon.

Matters with [info]the_child

My daughter continues to find her own path through this jungle of stress and ambiguous information. She's able to be pretty direct with me concerning her fears about my disease, but mostly in small doses. I am absolutely honest with her, as her mother and I have always firmly believed that if [info]the_child was old enough to ask a question, she was old enough to hear the answer.

Last night she took our coping process in a new direction, suggesting we start a collaborative work of fiction. She led off, establishing character, setting and problem, and together we wrote about 300 words. We're both out of town — separately — this weekend, but we'll work more on this story next week. It's a neat way to share and bond.

Going to Seattle, ways of saying good-bye

Speaking of going out of town, Lisa Costello and I are off to Seattle today. We'll be staying with John Pitts and his family, and seeing a number of friends. I'm extremely conscious of the fact that when I resume Vectibix in early March, I'll be starting down a path that will probably keep me in treatment for the rest of my life. (Unless, of course, the genomic testing pulls a cancer-killing rabbit out of the metaphorical hat.) I'm starting to say good-bye to people and places and things and events. Maybe it's unnecessary, maybe it's melodramatic, but that's where my head is at.

Makes me sad.

The perils of video blogging

I sat down late yesterday afternoon to record a video blog as part of the Lakeside [ [imdb ] project. I managed to both run the camera out of battery power and disrupt the audio pickup in the course of a six-minute long narration about the genomics analysis phone call. It was very frustrating, and caused me no end of grumpiness. Ah, technology.

Hair, hair, everywhere there's hair

These days, I view both my head hair and my body hair as mutable. They come and go, and change their nature depending on where I am in my treatment cycles. So recently, while shaving, I decided to adopt a chin beard.

Jay Lake with a chin beard

Which I happen to think looks absolutely ridiculous on me. Still, I make fun of this disease every way I can. And in an odd way, it goes with my tri-hawk.

Photo © 2013, Joseph E. Lake, Jr.

Creative Commons License

This work by Joseph E. Lake, Jr. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.