zilya: (jazz hands)
Been a while. Is this thing on? :)

Things are going kinda great actually, I'm doing less aerials (not currently performing) but feel in shape and strong again, and I'm doing more visual art which was my first and most powerful calling. Starting to get into a groove and find my voice: New art website at www.earthsign.com. More daily life and visual updates are usually on facebook under [real.name].

Changing my name. Tired of that moment of fear in people's eyes when they realize they're not likely to spell/pronounce it right. It gets in the way. new=LaManche, same great backstory, fewer syllables! Will be legal this year, everyone will get used to it and forget it was ever different. This is something I've been meaning to do for years.

so, hey!
zilya: (Default)
Bird nest above our front door, v2.0: So this Phoebe (small insect-eating bird) made a nest perched on a stone outcropping under our eaves. Very protected spot but not much of an outcropping. It attracted a mate and raised a clutch of chicks...

But when they got bigger the weight was too much and the nest fell! We found them one morning dead on the front stoop with the fallen nest- so sad! (Actually we found one alive and placed it in the nest in a nearby bush, and it got food and care from the parents and recovered- yay, one for our team!)

Then the bird started building again in the same spot. Fearing the same outcome, we decided to help. First a series of rods drilled into the stone wall provided a safety shelf, then some copper wire arches to support the bottom of the growing nest. The bird responded by building MORE of a cantilever out over the arches. So next I had to add these Steampunk wire-and-willow-twig buttresses. Not frightened away by our meddling, the bird seems to accept these improvements and keeps building, incorporating more of our structure. Hope it works this time, it's a team effort! </ geeks at play>
zilya: (daisy)
*sproing!* (gotta rake the leaves off em now)

Peepers!

Mar. 13th, 2012 07:40 pm
zilya: (daisy)
First spring peepers, on a lovely balmy March 13th afternoon.
zilya: (daisy)
Seen over the last couple of days: First redwing blackbird, first tick.
zilya: (muscle-new)
Hilarious! The free weights area at the gym was DESERTED this afternoon. In other news, I'm back to curling 30 lbs per arm :)

Had a bunch of flat parsley that was too tough to enjoy on its own- The solution was to make Chimichurri, a delicious Argentinian green sauce! Had it on cold chicken, planning for the rest over fried fish. Yum!
zilya: (snow)
Final tally: 6-8 inches of wet snow, oak trees down everywhere, one giant limb as big around as me is fallen across a power line 2 doors down. No electricity till they get that dealt with first. Funny, after the ice storm everyone on our street seems to have a generator :)

This storm seems to have caused major carnage amongst the oak trees- their leaves were all still on, and green, not even turned yet around here. And i guess they're more brittle and weren't used to that weight. So, big oak branches all over the place. Poor trees. But we should have lots of firewood for the taking, if we can go about with a chainsaw and wheelbarrow sometime soon. Also our willow tree lost many big branches, I'm glad we trimmed it back from overhanging the house last year. Everything fell straight down into mid-yard and didn't hit the house or rig.

Our street is at the end of the run of electric wires, and the branch is near the end too, so we won't be a priority for the work crews clearing lines and restoring power.
zilya: (drill)
My camera lens got stuck due to grit partway into the event, plus i went out to experience things more :)
Here is a collection of mostly setup and camp photos: http://www.flickr.com/photos/fastorange/sets/72157627646864362/
zilya: (Duke)
I think the way I'd like to observe this 10-year mark is to encourage us all to move past the "safety before freedom" scaredy-cat cultural bias we've fallen into, and back to enjoying our freedoms (what this country was supposed to be about anyway). It's been long enough, get over it already.

I've noticed that something has crept into the language: when people travel, the usual supportive thing to say is "Have a safe trip!" ugh. The reason we travel is not to be safe, it's to have fun or accomplish something!

Please think about your language and at least don't say that to ME anymore. I'll accept "drive carefully", cause that's talking about a real issue (phil would say so based on the way I drive). But I'd much rather hear "Have a FUN trip", "Have a great time", or "Take lots of pictures" :)

home!

Sep. 8th, 2011 10:42 pm
zilya: (drill)
Home from Burning Man, just checking back email and doing laundry, sleeping and cuddling the cats. We had double cats on the bed last night, and I had weird vivid dreams that involved building all kinds of shade structures.

Today was getting the ball rolling on fixing my car, which had a tree fall on it while parked in Somerville. Ah well, that's what insurance is for :)

The Burn itself was great, thoroughly enjoyed early crew setup time (in a hard work in the hot sun sort of way), then managed to balance rest and fun in such a way as to be functional all week, see a lot of wonderful people and things, help contribute to the camp, and do some good aerials teaching.

Now to get back in shape for real, I need to be good at silks performance again. It's "train every day" time.
zilya: (Duke)
Most I can recall were of the "shit my dad says" level of ridiculosity.

Three actually useful pieces of advice:
--"Dumpster diving is fun and you can find some good stuff"
--"You can shift without using the clutch by gunning the engine to the right RPM"
--"Let your breath out halfway, hold it, and depress the trigger slowly while sighing along the barrel"
zilya: (Default)
Phil is in a pickle... If 4 able-bodied people could come to our house Sunday to be in a 15-min. video about how to raise a portable rig, that would help a LOT!
(And it's his birthday weekend and he's all overworked for a deadline, poor dear!)
zilya: (daisy)
-Got some nice knotweeds over the weekend, they were only 8-12" high up here. Disturbingly there is a stand of them across from our house now.

-Had 2 TICKS crawling on me after just a trip to the compost heap. Starting to think seriously about keeping free-range chickens.

-Got a delivery of Jocelyn's delicious humanely-raised meats. Ham for dinner!!

-Cats bringing down about a mouse a day around here. Good cats!

-Just opened a bottle of the 2000 Muga Rioja Reserva with Phil. Mmmmm.
zilya: (Default)
the house next to us is on the market! come live there. Biggish suburban house, not a mcmansion, across from conservation land!
zilya: (daisy)
Fat robins in yard: check
Birds tweeting at dawn: check
Redwinged blackbirds back: check
Spring Peepers in the swamp: yesterday evening!!
Daylilies up: 1-2 inches
Skunk Cabbage: about baseball sized

Still one pile of snow in backyard, here :)

snow

Jan. 27th, 2011 08:01 pm
zilya: (snow)
And in other news, I have a new whole-body exercise regime! It's sort of like kettle bells, but it's done with a weight on the end of a stick... Gets me outdoors into the natural light a few hours a week too, so should be very good for my winter mood.
zilya: (art)
I remember working on stuff like this at the Media Lab, now it's in a consumer toy! The Xbox being able to sense human outlines in a room and recognize how they are positioned- besides games, people we know are using it to make interactive art!

http://slashdot.org/submission/1456424/Motion-controlled-dance-music-with-XboxKinect-hack#comments

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lqxUzhDIdqo

Still not as responsive as a WII, but it has cool possibilities. In the media lab versions they were injecting semi-intelligent agents into the video that you could interact with. There's been some talk of muddling with the figures in the video in this one too :)
zilya: (anime)
I have several clients now who are great, and one who is driving me up a wall by repeatedly changing her mind on things that are either meaningless, or I had it done better to start with. Oy.

Ok, Focus on the positive!!
zilya: (computers)
A client needs someone who is "a Zencart whiz" for some quick direction and possible one-on-one tutoring (In Cambridge, but could possibly be done over the phone).
Could turn into ongoing support relationship.
Anyone good at this and want to help?
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