Thursday, March 30, 2006

My new favorite site

HK Flix

It's a good thing I still have a little of my Christmas money left...It should buy me a fair few $4.95 kung fu film DVD's #grins#

Woo! Dialup's back!

...Although I don't really have much to talk about. I did have a bizarre dream last night; I suppose that's something. I was walking through a large rambling mall with Alton Brown, and I was carrying a large tan tabby cat that was apparently his. My mission was to carry it home for him so it didn't escape into the mall and get lost. Nope, not relevant to anything; I just thought it was weird enough to get a mention.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Wow, a new reason for me not to like Blade

"Adding to BLADE'S 'swordid' affair, Marvel and Wesley Snipes threatened lawsuits against the non-threatening actor Jeff Falcon several years ago when Falcon's film THE BLADE had to change the title to SIX-STRING SAMURAI."
- Dr. Craig D. Reid, Kung Fu Magazine

Dude! Six-String doesn't even have vampires in it! Were they worried they'd lose money (to an independant production which only got a limited theater release anyway) if the names were too similar; i.e. did they honestly believe that people might get the movies mixed up? Anyone who's even glanced at the posters will know that there's no way in hell to confuse the two. In fact the only thing they have in common is that both productions have swords in them. What a bunch of dickweeds.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Spam Poetry

(Spam recieved by Austin; type not specified)

Not rhombic! breastwork it's culbertson
The mater be abdicate
May tonnage but emigrate or digit! Whimsic it's pythagoras!
Hotrod the calf try crystallography and hosiery
Or maybe not

Spam Poetry

In their neverending quest to have their missives delivered into your inbox rather than your bulk folder, spammers have hit upon the idea of upping the ratio of non blocker-recognized words by putting random chunks of text in at the bottom of their emails. Some of these are completely random, some look to be passages from books run twice through Babelfish, and some approach actual lucidity. The ones I like best are the ones that sound nearly like blank verse; as though the spammer was both trying to sell a product and work their way through an emotional crisis with a dictionary and a rudimentary grasp of language. I've played fast and loose with the return key, and the occasional capitalization, but other than that these will be printed as I recieved them.

(From a "Buy our stock!" email)

Intruder as penetrate as follower, chamber music alarm clock falsetto... singsong?! warmth?! corresponding astronomer and tailor entirely garret confiscation
Silversmith of well-bred bandy, password turban,
Booking angle probability ripen, urge an allure of syrup to Middle America goddess sorrowfully!!! bone marrow million, alcohol pregnancy as jackpot in incubation an splay, the commencement in preposition, dumb: smoothness,

Funniest site I've seen all week...

...Although it is only Tuesday, I suppose.

Stuff On My Cat

Sunday, March 26, 2006

So, after one of the most frustrating rides of recent memory, I am facing the realization that it is entirely likely that Cameron will never be able to do more than dressage and mild jumping, and that at home indoors. I have been saying for a long time now that if I could just get him used to going outside, that he would be as steady as he is in the ring, and I really did believe that was so. But today's ride was a mirror image of nearly all the other times I've attempted to ride him in the field, i.e. he slowly but steadily comes unglued until I feel that remaining on his back is a stupid decision and I get off, which doesn't change his reaction any at all. This is barely out of sight of the barn, mind you; it's not as though I get him several miles into the back country and he realizes he's alone and away from home. This has happened every single time I've taken him up there, save one, and instead of a hopeful sign I'm starting to treat that as a fluke, especially since it was probably two years ago. I realized today that trying to school him cross-country like this would be a complete disaster, and possibly dangerous, given his energetic fear reactions- he has quite literally done caprioles through my tactful and otherwise attempts to slow him down/quiet him. That's usually the point when I get off and walk him home, but he's just as reactive when I'm off him as when I'm on, and apparently just as inclined to ignore me in favor of his fear or outright disobey when I ask for him to walk calmly beside me.

I kept hoping it would get better, but realistically, it's three years later and it hasn't gotten any better. Admittedly I don't take him out every other day, but still, if by now I can't get him to a point where I'm happy to stay on him, then obviously things haven't been getting better and after this much time it's possible that it never will. If I can't hack him or take him cross-country, that means he's only going to be able to do dressage and small bits of jumping in the ring. It's a bit of a blow, really.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Dunno why. Probably just because I've always liked it...

In the desert
I saw a creature, naked, bestial,
Who, squatting upon the ground,
Held his heart in his hands,
And ate of it.
I said: "Is it good, friend?"
"It is bitter - bitter," he answered;
"But I like it
Because it is bitter,
And because it is my heart."

-Stephen Crane (1905)

Late Night Movie Musings

Cannibal Barbarian!

No, it's not really a real movie. But if it was, I would watch it- preferably at two am, sitting on the couch with a bottle of birch beer and Austin and any packmates that decided to sit up with us. If it existed, I would pay money for a rental just to laugh at it.

...I'm not sure what that says about me, but there you go #grins#

Wednesday, March 22, 2006


Okay, so why can't our country have this kind of sensible attitude towards sex education? Why is it that everyone here has to be uptight and weird instead of open and honest?
Bloody puritans...#grumbles#

Tuesday, March 21, 2006


Got this from Suzanne's blog. I don't usually bother with these, but I like to do one once in a while for solidarity, or something.

1. Initials:
ARS - Ars means "art" in Latin, which is kind of cool. Of course, it's pretty close to "arse" as well...

2. Name someone with the same birthday as you:
Harry Potter.

3. Where was your first kiss?
After hours at the Cornerstone Bookstore in Plattsburgh.

4. For or against same sex marriage?
I thought this was fairly self-explanatory- people who are in love should be together. I don't get why some people don't support it.

5. Are you homophobic?
Nope. I think homophobes are ridiculously paranoid, right up there with the tinfoil hat brigade.

6. Are you bisexual?
Not so far as I know- as a wise man once said, it's not that I discard the possibility, it's just that so far no women have really struck me that way. While I think a lot of women are gorgeous, it seems to be an aesthetic appreciation rather than anything else. Given a choice between getting to bag, say, Salma Hayek or Adam Savage, Adam's going to win.

7. Do you believe in God?
Yes, but that's simplifying my outlook on religion considerably.

8. How many U.S states have you been to?
Including the one I live in and ones I've been to airports in? Twelve.

9. How many of the U.S states have you lived in?
Two so far, Pennsylvania and New York.

10. Have you ever lived outside the U.S?
No, but I have visited England and I've evented in Canada.

11. Name something you like physically about yourself:
My eyes are all right; they're this interesting blue-gray color with a neat gold ring around my pupils.

12. Something non-physical you like about yourself:
I tend to learn things quickly.

13. Whats your mom's first name

14. What is your dream car?
I don't really like driving, so I'm not too interested in cars. I always liked the old Blazer, though, so if someone let me pick a car, I'd probably pick that.

15. If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go?
Heh. Right this minute? York, England. If you mean for a vacation, I'd like to see Ireland and Scotland a lot, and I've always wanted to see the prehistoric cave art in France.

16. Have you ever had someone of the opposite sex sleep over at your house?
Yes. My little brother stays here quite a bit in order to get lots of Diablo II'ing in.

18. Do you download music?
Not with a 56k modem, no. And as much as I despise the RIAA's business policies and general outlook, I'm still not really very comfortable with the idea of downloading music I haven't paid for. Although a trial listen before buying the CD seems a fairly sound notion.

19. How many illegal things have you done?
Surprisingly few. In fact, other than getting kicked out of a state park for being there after hours, I can't think of any.

20. Where would you want to go on a first date?
A movie, then dinner. It doesn't make any sense the other way around; you wouldn't have enough time to discuss the movie.

21. Would you date the person who posted this before you?
Well, she's my packsister, and we're both pretty much heterosexual, so probably not. Although if my packsisters and myself were into women, she, Megin, and I would probably form an unstoppable triumverate #grins#

22. Has anyone ever sang or played for you personally?
Yes, and I have the mpegs of violin-playing to prove it.

23. Ever been kissed under fireworks?
Sadly, no. Although I have been so close to municipal fireworks that the spent bits rained down on us, which made the evening a bit more exciting.

24. Do you like president Bush?
Not at all- I think he's a spoiled little rich boy. And although I've given up on having a president that smarter than me or my friends, I would at least like one that's smarter than my horse. I am really sick of being embarassed for my country every time he appears on the TV.

25. Have you ever bungee jumped?
Nope. It does look like fun, though.

26. Have you ever white-water rafted?
No, but my folks say it's great.

27. Has anyone ten years older than you ever hit on you?
I'm not sure I'd have noticed if they did. I can be fairly oblivious to that sort of thing.

29. Have you met a real redneck?
Yes, I lived in Forest County for nearly two decades, so it was pretty much bound to happen.

31. What song are you listening to right now?
Portishead - "Wandering Stars"

32. Whats your favorite song at the moment?
I have no idea how to pick a favorite song. As for the one that gets the most play time, it'd be a tie between "So Far Away" by Dire Straits, and "Call Me" off the Cowboy Bebop soundtrack, but that's because I find them both extremely comforting.

33. What was the last movie you watched?
The Calamari Wrestler. And I highly recommend it.

35. Where was the last place you went besides your house?
The barn, as per usual.

36. Have you ever seriously vandalized someone elses property?
No, actually. And does this happen so often that we need a question for it?

37. Have you ever hit someone of the opposite sex?
In a joking "Shut up!" sort of way, yes.

39. What's the first thing you notice about the opposite sex?
Eyes, smile, and hair. Usually in that order.

40. What really turns you on?
Intelligence. And I have a certain weakness for good sarcasm.

41. What do you usually order from Starbucks?
I've never been to Starbucks. And I gave up coffee some years ago, but I have been known to grab a cup when I know I need to be awake. I don't like it much straight, but I don't mind it if chocolate is involved.

44. Say something totally random about yourself:
I liked the Lady Godiva story so much that I once rode a horse naked. Well, with helmet and boots, anyway.

45. Do you have an iPod?:

46. Has anyone ever said you looked like a celebrity?
Not really.

47. Whats your dad's name?

48. Do you have braces?
No, and haven't had.

49. Are you comfortable with your height?
I have come to terms with it over the years.

50. Do you like someone right now?
I like some people.

51. How tall are you?
5'10, or thereabouts.

52. Do you speak any other language other than english?
I can stumble along in French, and if pressed can probably say "Hello, how are you, " and a few other phrases in Russian.

55. Have you ever ridden in a limo?
Yes. Went in one to see U2 in Pittsburgh with my Mom and brother as my graduation present.

56. Has anyone very close to you passed away?
Yes. I think this has probably happened to everyone, though.

57. Do you watch MTV?
Nah, haven't bothered since about 1992, when they stopped showing music videos for more than five minutes at a time.

58. What's something that really annoys you?
Willful ignorance.

59. What are some things you really like?
Check the sidebar.

60. Do you like Michael Jackson?
I recognize that he is very talented musically, although I don't particularly care for it. I don't care for him otherwise either as I think his personal life is about as messed up as you can get this side of fiction.

61. Can you dance?
In public? Doubtful.

62. Have you ever surfed?
I've never been anywhere with both warm weather and waves. And sharks scare me anyway.

63. Do you know how to pump gas?
Yes, although I don't own a car so this doesn't come up much.

64. Do you drive?
I can operate a car, although I've never driven in traffic and I don't have a license.

65. What's the latest you have ever stayed out?
Probably two or three in the morning.

66. Have you ever thought that you were honestly going to die?
Yes. But oddly, it wasn't as scary as you'd think. Everything slowed down a lot, and I was very calm until it turned out I was okay. Then everything went normal speed and I panicked.

67. Were you ever rushed by an ambulance into the emergency room?

68. Have you ever been dared to do something you didn't want to do?
Can't think of anything, no.

69. What's your favorite state?
It's a toss up; while I love my home state of PA, the Adirondacks up in NY do hold a chunk of my heart.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Happy Things!

Inspired by Dr. Freex, I am compiling a list of things that make me happy, or at least, happier. This should by no means be considered complete, and will be updated at intervals.

Happy Things

You know when you're walking into the barn, and you're having a conversation with someone, and you come around the corner and there's your horse, and he's standing in his stall with his ears perked up and forward, because he's heard you coming and he's happy to see you? I love that.

60's movies with Michael Caine. Well, 'The Italian Job, ' 'The Ipcress File, ' and 'The Man Who Would Be King, ' anyway.

SinFest - the web comic, I mean.

Clementines. A pocket-sized seedless sweet orange you can peel with your fingers.
*The* perfect snack.

Chris Barrie. Mostly in Red Dwarf, occasional popups in other comedy series, and that bit in Tomb Raider where he gets a shotgun. Marvelous.

Emulators for old computers. There's nothing like playing the games you used to wait ten minutes for with just a click. A lot of them are still as engaging as you remember, too.
- Specifically on that, the games Silicon Dreams, Scarabaeus, and Rocky's Boots.

Those Donna Karen catalog shoots with Jeremy Irons. Mmmmmmm. #grins#

Anything Edward Gorey has ever drawn. Sure, some of it is desperately depressing, but it's all so well-done and Victorian and grimly funny that it makes me smile anyway.

T.S. Eliot's "Old Possum's Book Of Practical Cats"

John Bellairs' series of horror novels for the younger set. They're creepy and funny and Gothic as all get-out, and the stories are great. My copies are pretty old, and have the awesome Edward Gorey illustrations.

Chocolate digestive biscuits. And that chocolate coffee cheesecake that Tara makes.

Getting new stuff for my horse in the mail. Somehow it's more fun than buying it in a store. In fact, getting anything in the mail is way more fun than buying it outright.

The Hall of Dinosaurs at the Carnegie museum in Pittsburgh. I have never once gone there (and I've been there a fair few times) without being completely delighted every time. There's nothing like looking up into the jaws of a Tyrannosaur skeleton to make your day complete.

A happy rattie hanging out on your shoulder. Especially when they learn that if they run to one side or the other, you'll go in that direction. Then they try to take you to where the food is. :)

Art supplies, and a brand-new blank tablet of good paper.

Samurai movies. The Lone Wolf and Cub ones and ones with Toshiro Mifune get extra

All night Quake Deathmatching sessions with the Gods of Quake. Especially now that I've got a PS2 controller for the PC. I still suck, but it's on my own merits and not because I can't cope with the mouse/keyboard combo.

Really funny TV series. Especially Bottom, the Young Ones, Spaced, MST3K, Upright Citizens' Brigade, Blackadder, Flying Circus, Dangermouse, and the Kids In The Hall.

Plot and character driven anime series. Specifically Trigun (my all time favorite), Cowboy Bebop, Samurai Champloo, Fullmetal Alchemist, and Hellsing.

Speaking of, Trigun- Still my favorite anime series of all time. It's character and plot driven, and follows the life of a man who is determined to do the right thing no matter the cost to himself. And no matter how bad things get, no matter how many times he gets knocked down, he still does the right thing. How can you not love a story like that?

Killer Shrews- Vanilla ice cream, chocolate syrup, milk, and Kaluha. Mix in blender. Qualifies as a dessert rather than a milkshake.

Take-out Chinese food.

Cool rainy days with lots of fog. Alternatively, bright sunny days, as long as they aren't too hot.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Late Night Movie Musings

Was anyone anywhere actually scared by The Leprechaun? Seriously? I mean, I'm glad Warwick Davis got a paycheck and all (several, given that there were four or five sequels) because he's very talented, and yeah it's nice to see someone trying for a slasher flick outside the usual mold, but come on, who besides Garth Algar is terrified to watch these? Horror and humor are both hard to get right, and nearly impossible to reconcile in the same script; some rare movies manage it (off the top of my head, Dog Soldiers, American Werewolf In London, Shaun of the Dead, and Evil Dead 2) but they're pretty special. Most follow Sturgeon's Law and fail to be either scary or funny, instead being irritating, non-scary, or even tedious. This film, while at least different from the normal late-night slasher fare, is definitely not scary and its humor relies mainly on the "let's throw a small guy around!" portion of slapstick. Although I have to admit that the line, "Fuck you, Lucky Charms!" is fairly amusing #grins#

As a side note, I've just found the scariest thing about this movie. I think I actually had the L.A. Gear hightops the heroine (a youngish Jennifer Aniston, according to IMDB) is wearing. I mean, they have pink edging and pink laces- what the hell was I thinking?

Typing the last post reminded me of a favorite Willow Hill memory (well, one of tons and tons of favorite memories from there, anyway) My day off was Monday, so I worked weekends as a matter of course. We had a radio in every barn, because music does make work go easier. During the week I had the local classic rock station, Champ 101.3, and I widened my music experience considerably listening to it for eight or nine hours a day, along with being entertained by their morning show, which started the same time I started work in the morning, i.e. six am. But on Sunday mornings, the other semi-local rock station would play the House of Blues radio show. It started at eleven, by which time I would be out grooming horses in Hillside. The barn was always quieter on Sunday mornings; hardly any boarders would be there so I usually had the place to myself. Cool weather, warm weather, snow, sunshine, hail, rain; it didn't matter. It was just me and the horses, working and listening to Elwood educate his listeners and to some amazing men and women singing the blues.

Geek Cred

Watching Night Court reruns (and laughing my ass off; I'd forgotten how funny they could be) and I am reminded that my earliest crush was probably Harry Anderson as Judge Stone. It was either him or Dan Ackroyd as Ray Stantz; I can't really remember anymore. If that doesn't belong under the Geek Cred title bar I don't know what does #grins#

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Late Night Movie Musings

Oh man...The Calamari Wrestler may very well be the best movie ever.

Basically, a giant talking squid enters Japanese Pro Wrestling in order to win the championship title. He is actually the ascended form of a wrestler who contracted a fatal disease when he had only just peaked in his chosen sport. The squid wins against the former champion, who is forced to go into seclusion and train until he becomes an octopus in order to have a fair rematch against the squid's superior reach and lack of joints. After their rematch the octopus, human again, must help the squid train for a fight against a squilla, which is a shrimplike beastie. I'm actually leaving a lot out, because I'd hate to spoil it too much for anyone who wants a watch, but it is silly and hilarious and damned entertaining.

I would seriously pay money to dress up in a giant squid suit and get in a wrestling ring to fight someone dressed up as a giant octopus. I'm not sure what that says about me, but there you go. #grins#

Late Night Movie Musings

Got Blade on as background, and although I've seen it a half a dozen times or so, I never manage to warm towards it. Yeah, I know, Wesley Snipes is good in everything, and there was at least a reasonable about of care paid to the production. I'm not arguing that. I can watch it, but I just can't find it in my heart to like it, no matter how it's argued.* Maybe it's because my friend Anthony wrote a far cooler vampire hunter story (with a somewhat similar theme) several years before this movie was even made. Maybe it's because I can't buy Club Kiddie vampires as actual villains, and I find them annoying rather than terrifying. Maybe it's because I couldn't fathom a council of ancient vampires who shuffle about and mumble about things and are herded to their doom like sheep without any sign of resistance. Maybe it's because the millenia-old temple looked as though it ought to have a food court and a Bon-Ton on the second floor.
Maybe I'm just picky. Yeah, it's probably that. But still...

*Seriously. Austin and I once had a two hour debate about this film, mostly because he likes it and I don't. So while I appreciate that many people enjoy this film, don't think you can talk me around to it, because I'm fairly certain that the discussion covered every possible plus point of it at least twice over.


Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Geed Cred

I know I must be doing something right when my Amazon recomendations list includes Kraftwerk and Count Duckula.

What's the weirdest thing I've seen all night?

A youngish Jonathan Frakes on the Dukes of Hazzard-* as Boss Hogg's nephew, no less.

*What am I doing watching the Dukes of Hazzard? It's two in the morning, and beggars can't be choosers. I need something harmless as background noise so I can write, and they'll all out of crappy vampire movies on Scifi.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

I sent Austin my copy of the first season of the Upright Citizens' Brigade along with his Christmas package. He'd seen it with me on his last visit, but I wanted to make sure that John and Jeff got a chance to see the sheer surreal joy that is the UCB. So far Jeff has been introduced to the Hong Kong Danger Duo, Captain Lunatic, and Steve Youngblood. John should be visiting Austin this weekend, so his indoctrination can commence.

The infiltration of the UK has begun...#grins#

Monday, March 13, 2006

It was funny on Sunday to ride and have Cameron be just as soft and responsive as I could have wished after a week off. As I commented when we were done, apparently the aliens took the pod creature away and gave me my horse back #grins# I suppose I forget sometimes how far he's come.
When I first got Cameron, he had been out to pasture for two years, for sale, while his owner went to college. He's a worrier by nature, and needs a calm rider to give him direction, but from what I gathered his owner had been timid and in need of a horse that could give her reassurance. This is never a good combination, because panic feeds on panic and you end up with a horse and a rider who constantly make each other neurotic. So although I saw that in there somewhere was a happy, obedient pony, in the beginning I was often troubled by Cameron reacting to nearly all new situations by becoming a bundle of taut nerves, unfettered instincts, and explosive energy. I took to calling this part of him "Jo-Jo the Idiot Boy, " and we used these times to work towards "Cameron moments, " when he would relax and listen, take my word that whatever we were doing wasn't going to hurt him, and basically act like a good horse should. As Clinton Anderson once said (and I'm paraphrasing here) the horse has two halves of his brain, the thinking half and the instinctual half. Because he only has so much room in his head, you can train him and work with him until the thinking portion dwarfs the instinctual portion- but no matter how hard you try you can't get rid of the instinctual portion entirely. So while Cam has calmed down considerably from those earlier days, he will likely always have those moments where he panics and turns into Jo-Jo. But they're coming few and far between these days, which is probably more than I could have asked for, and I need to keep that in mind.

Friday, March 10, 2006

Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your
Even as the stone of the fruit must break, that its heart
may stand in the sun, so must you know pain.
And could you keep your heart in wonder at the daily
miracles of your life, your pain would not seem less
wondrous than your joy;
And you would accept the seasons of your heart, even as you
have always accepted the seasons that pass over your fields.
And you would watch with serenity through the winters of your
Much of your pain is self-chosen.
It is the bitter potion by which the physician within you heals
your sick self. Therefore trust the physician, and drink his rem-
edy in silence and tranquility: For his hand, through heavy and
hard, is guided by the tender hand of the Unseen,
And the cup he brings, though it burn your lips, has been fash-
ioned of the clay which the Potter has moistened with His own
sacred tears.

From "The Prophet"
by Kahil Gibran

Sunday, March 05, 2006

The Learning Curve

So, I had dilligently practiced my test (dressage, Training 4) for a couple of weeks, and aside from a few hiccups on particularly cold nights, we were doing well. We were relaxed and on rhythm, and were moving forward without running away. The little arena felt small, especially on the loops, but we had been coping nicely. I had a nice ride Saturday night, we did a calm, collected test, and I cooled him out, untacked, and did my braiding (in the 45 minutes I had before barn curfew; they were worst braids I've ever done, and that's saying something #grins#) before giving him some treats and heading home to clean my tack.
Sunday morning I checked his braids (surprisingly, I had little to fix, but it took ages to pick the shavings out- he must have rolled at some point) got into my show gear (minus the tie; I was running behind and I still can't tie one to save my life anyway) and headed into the warmup. We warmed up pretty well; he was slightly tense but he was listening and responsive. I entered the ring when the last horse left, and we walked around for a while. There wasn't much for him to look at, since this is the same ring we ride in all the time. The only new thing was the line of rails on the blocks that marked the end of the small arena, and I made sure to go past it in both directions. I stayed towards the C end in order to not have to make any awkward circles to get on line. We were pretty calm and collected. Then the bell rang. I took up my reins, asked for a trot, and off we went.
For all the prep work, for all the warming up, for all the time spent learning and riding the test, the minute we left X he acted as though he'd never done the test before in his life. Although he wasn't quite as mental as when we showed away from home, he was wound up like a clockwork toy and not inclined to slow down; we exploded into the first canter depart and after a circle that was practically a hand-gallop we damned near jumped right out of the ring while I was trying to come down to trot at H. The free walk was wiggly, with a jig at K, and the second canter depart was better but he still leapt into it. He did stretch in the stretch circle, but I couldn't manage to bring him back easily and we ended up halting about three feet to the right of G, which the judge was quick to bring to my attention #grins#
Still, it was a schooling show, which means the judge gets to talk to you afterwards and give you pointers. In my case, there were a *lot* of pointers. Which I didn't mind; I mean hey, free advice. And she brought up a lot of good points, pilot error being the most prominent (which is pretty much always the case). Fair enough. I just wish I could have gotten her opinion on the practice test I rode last night, when he was calm and felt great.
Cam seemed oddly worried afterwards; when I got off he wanted his head against me the whole time I was talking to the judge, and when I put him in his stall and untacked him he put his head in the back left corner, which he never does. He has three basic stall postures; head by his feed, head by the window, and head by the door. Today he just put his head in the back corner as though he was depressed. I thought perhaps his show issues were due to being away from home, but now I'm starting to wonder if it's just that he has the horse equivelant of test anxiety. I petted him and tried to reassure him that I wasn't upset with him, and after a while he took his head out of the corner and came up to the front of the stall again. Funny things, horses. I do know from someone who knew him before that he had never had a good show experience, and I will probably have that to deal with for the rest of his life. But what I didn't expect was that he might actually feel bad about how he acts while in the ring. It's not anthromorphizing; animals, while obviously not thinking in the same way humans do, do think and feel emotions. Anyone who says otherwise has obviously never worked long hours with them outside of a lab environment.
So anyway, all in all it was another learning experience; while sometimes I despair of ever competing him and having him be calm, I know it's probably just that he needs more low-stress show time until he realizes that everything is fine and nothing's going to hurt him. But it would be nice to get a judge's comments on a test on our normal riding style. I'm just saying.

Friday, March 03, 2006

So, possibly the last thing I expected at one in the morning was to pick up a travel mug off the floor and find a live shrew in it. I'm not sure which of us was the more startled, really.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

The sleep dep is telling me that it's a good time to post...

So, I'm actually typing this from the new home of Grey's company, and I'm here at 7:30 am because I've actually been here since about nine last night helping (in my own limited way) with the server migration. I'm mostly here to fetch and carry, although I am apparently competant enough to run cable testers and toners and occasionally ping things, so I at least feel somewhat useful.
It has, however, been a long time since I've stayed up for 20+ hours at a stretch, and currently I find myself drinking coffee and reading Slashdot and the Reg so I guess an office environment and lack of sleep makes me think I am an engineer, instead of just having latent tendencies.