In Which There Is Less Need To Set Up An Integral Than Before

3 December 2003

I really need to make "make a new list" my default "set up an integral." See, when I was in Classical III (introductory electromagnetics) my sophomore year of college, the answer to all of our problems was "set up an integral." Well, not the answer. But the first step to getting the answer. All that semester, I used it for an answer for everything. It substituted in for such diverse answers as "plug in the o-scope" and "filled with the Holy Spirit." "Set up an integral" ruled.

I'd been doing edits to Reprogramming and jotting down things to address, notes like "variation in robot size?" But my brain was running around in tiny, frightened little circles at the thought of adding Luz and Nameless to this thing. (Nameless will not be named Nameless. I just haven't settled on her name to my satisfaction. Today I will.) So I started a list for each of them: what new scenes do they require, all by themselves and alone? I'll do another pair of lists today, of the pre-existing scenes they need to meddle in. But the lists are working for me; I'm breathing a big sigh of relief and feel able to tackle the job of it, rather than circling it warily, ready to bolt at any moment.

Also, reading the very beginning of John Crowley's Aegypt gave me some good insights into what the heck it is I'm doing with the Not The Moose Book, so there's that. It'll make the whole mess better, eventually, even though nothing in the opening of Aegypt had anything remotely to do with the setting, plot, characters, theme, or central conceit of the Not The Moose Book. Insight is sneaky that way. You can't just pick something related and get yourself a nice insight for the price of the time invested. Nooooo. You have to maybe wander around the side and keep glancing at it out of the corner of your eye. Tricksy insight, tricksy and occasionally false. But I'm glad it's here, now, anyway.

Unlike my stupid mail. Honestly. It's enough to make me crazy. It's enough to make me send myself a test postcard addressed to the wrong place, just so that I have a sense for how long these stupid things are taking. (Hmm. At least then I'd have some data. Maybe three postcards, since I already have extra plain ones and then I'd have a statistically workable sample, if not a statistically good sample. You can take the girl out of the laboratory, but you can't take....)

I finished reading The Porcelain Dove yesterday, and enjoyed it mightily, but I'm not sure to whom I'll be able to recommend it. I also finished addressing Christmas cards. I even started writing in some of them. Of course, I started writing in the ones where I didn't have to write much. Not the ones where I have to tell people where we are and what we're doing.

And Yoda chimes in, in the back of my head: "Never his mind on where he was, hmm? What he was doing." Well. Yah. Exactly.

Scott and I were talking -- for obscure, Kurt Vonnegut-related reasons -- about album jacket illustrations, and now I've got "Songs from the Wood" in my head. "Singer of these ageless times, with kitchen prose and gutter rhymes...."

Yaaaaarg! Yarg! It is absolutely not right, not right at all, that a second toilet should break -- should break in a way identical to the first one -- a week later. Noooo! How could this happen? Granted, now I know, at least, how to fix it and where to get the part at Home Despot, and all of that. But it just seems like a joke. A little running gag. Yarg. (And no, it isn't broken so that the toilet is still running. I'm not saying I'm not that bad a punner, because I am. Just not in this case.) Now I have to eye the downstairs toilet just in case.

But not constantly. Which is good, as I have a few other things to do. Like racking my brains trying to remember what I was going to name this new Reprogramming character, or else making up something new for her, fast. Okay. So. There's a plan, of sorts.

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