Busy busy Monday

The start of a new working week! I had a lot of chores and tasks I wanted to get done today. First cab off the rank was a 5k run. The weather was a lot cooler than last week, which I think helped, and I felt a bit more at ease through the last few laps than last week, and ran a better time of 27:32, so that’s good. Although I’m beginning to think the 26:32 I ran a few weeks ago might have been a GPS glitch that credited me with more distance in a shorter time somehow, as I haven’t been able to break 27 minutes since.

I had some errands to run, visiting the post office to mail some things that somebody bought from me, and then a tailor to drop off a jacket for alteration. I got a new lightweight cotton jacket on the trip to the city a week or so ago, and it’s good, but the breast pocket is weirdly sideways – it opens on the side rather than the top, and I feel that as soon as I put anything in there it will just fall out unless I button the flap over it, which is just annoying and not normally something I do with pockets. So I put it in to be altered by removing the flap, stitching up the side, and unstitching the top, to turn it into a normal pocket. I don’t quite understand how any clothing designer could thing a pocket that opens on the side and not the top is a good idea. I had to wait about 15 minutes in the tailor’s shop because there was a woman in there ahead of me, having a dress altered, and she was wearing it and making lots of little adjustments and the tailor was putting pins in all over the place, and it honestly took about 15 minutes until they were done and I was served.

I spent the afternoon writing Irregular Webcomic! annotations to fully finish off that batch I started working on last week. And picked up Scully from my wife’s work and took her to a nearby park (not our usual dog park, which is a short drive away) for some ball chasing. There was a woman there with a boy about 6 or 7 years old, and he was keen to throw the ball and have Scully chase it, so I let him do that a bit.

The conversation with my friends about the definition of a game slopped over into today, with someone suggesting the following:

I’m imagining a pastime in which people take turns drawing cards with activities named on each card, such as Monopoly, Settlers of Catan, or Snakes and Ladders [or maybe even soccer, or crossword puzzles], and then attempt to refine an evolving definition of “game” such that there are more cards in front of that person meeting that definition than anyone else. This proceeds until someone draws a card named “This Pastime” at which point the pastime ends, and either the current definition of “game” encompasses the pastime itself, in which case someone may win, or else the definition does not encompass the pastime, in which case the people were not playing a game after all, it was merely a pastime.

New content today:

Comic photos day

It was a busy day today. First thing off the agenda was the weekly grocery shop. Normally it’s a short drive up to the supermarket, but today there was some sort of traffic blockage on the street I normally take. I could see police lights flashing, and the traffic at a standstill. So I turned off into a back street and took a roundabout route, which took me several minutes longer, but probably faster than waiting to get through the blockage.

When I got home, I started doing photography for the batch of Irregular Webcomic! strips that I finished writing yesterday. I got about halfway through and then took a break for lunch. I walked up to the oval and ran a 1k, and managed my fastest time, a second faster than previously, at 4:25.

I grabbed some lunch on the way home, and then finished off photographing the comics. Then it was time to go pick up Scully from my wife’s office, and bring her home. Then shortly after that my wife came home, and we went out for dinner at the local pizza place.

Oh, I forgot to post a photo I took yesterday of the cool change hitting after the hot day:

Cold change

New content today:

Comic writing day

Not much to report today. I spent most of the day writing a new batch of Irregular Webcomic! scripts. I powered through plenty of scripts, and I should be ready to take photos for them tomorrow.

The other notable thing about today was the weather. It was very warm, getting up to 31.7°C in Sydney, which is unusually warm for September, to say the least, although a couple of degrees short of the all-time record for the month. But the heat lasted until pretty much 4pm, when I was at the dog park with Scully. We were standing there in the still warmth, and then suddenly a strong gust of wind blew in across the harbour, and the temperature dropped from “this is quite warm” to “oh! I wish I was wearing something warmer!” in a matter of a few seconds. It was the most remarkable and sudden change of conditions I’ve seen. By the time we left the dog park a few minutes later, it was so chilly that I really was regretting wearing only a T-shirt and shorts. Tomorrow is forecast to reach a maximum of only 20°C.

New content today:

Huge annotation day

I spent basically all day today working on Irregular Webcomic! annotations. I just finished now, after 9pm. Most of it was one annotation, that I started writing yesterday. I finished it off today, and made a couple of diagrams to illustrate it. It ended up being over 5000 words long. Which is a lot of technical, researched writing to do in a single day, believe me.

I’m exhausted…

New content today:

Double cold weekend

Sunday dawned cold and windy, much as yesterday, although today we managed a degree higher, with 17°C being the maximum temperature in Sydney. Again I stayed indoors for most of the day, only venturing out with my wife and Scully for a bit of afternoon play and exercise in a nearby park. They also visited my mother-in-law for morning tea, leaving me at home to deal with constructing the final few Irregular Webcomic! strips from the current batch, and launch into writing annotations for them.

Oh, but if you were worried about me freezing to death in this horrid 16-17°C Antarctic cold, don’t despair. The forecast for the coming week has our Sydney winter temperatures back up to a comfortable 26°C.

I’m currently in the middle of writing an annotation for one, which requires a considerable amount of work and research. I’ve written 1900 words so far, and am not even really close to being finished. I’ll have to leave it until tomorrow.

Last night to relax during the evening I watch the 1986 movie Labyrinth, for the first time ever. I feel like I was catching up on a bit of my childhood that I somehow missed at the time. It was exactly the sort of movie I would have watched and enjoyed as a child, except for some reason I never did see it at the time. Although in a modern sense the film is very dated and not very sophisticated, I enjoyed watching it – perhaps more for the sense that it made me feel like a kid again than for its own intrinsic quality.

New content today:

Late Friday post on Saturday morning

Friday was busy and I neglected to make my daily post, so I’m dong it on Saturday morning.

I began Friday with writing a last few Irregular Webcomic! scripts over breakfast. Then it was off to the supermarket for the weekly grocery shopping. It was a smaller load this week, with not much running out since last week. I got some fresh fruit and vegetables and a few bits and pieces like a bag of lentils and a block of cheese – and some toothpaste since it was on sale for $2 off. There are some products I only ever buy when they are on sale, and just keep enough of a stockpile so that I can wait until next time they are on sale. Ice cream I never buy at full price either, although it often runs out before the next sale and I have to make do with no ice cream for a week or two!

Back home I got stuck into photographing Lego and miniatures sets for the batch of comics that I’d just finished writing. I started at 10:00, after unpacking the groceries, and finished after midday, just in time for lunch.

In the afternoon I took a bit of a break from comicking and processed and posted some old photos from a trip to Thailand back in 2005. Then I got stuck into assembling the comics from the photos taken in the morning, and finished off half a dozen or so before my wife came home from work with Scully. We all went out for dinner, to a nice French creperie. Since it was very cold and we had to sit outside with Scully, I had some mulled cider to wash down my galettes and crepes. Mmmm.

Back home, my friends began an impromptu games night, interstitial to our scheduled fortnightly games nights. We’ve been working on a custom word list for skribbl.io (an online implementation of a Pictionary-like drawing game), since the default word list skews very American. We got everyone to submit a few hundred words and came up with a list of over 1300 custom words to draw. We have things like “lamington”, “echidna”, “Mister Squiggle”, “Circular Quay”, and so on, as well as more generic things. It was loads of fun, and actually a bit more challenging as some of the words we listed were quite difficult to draw.

New content today:

Back to work after the weekend away…

Scully was so exhausted after our weekend trip that she basically slept all evening and solidly all through the night – which was good because that meant my wife and I got a good night’s sleep too.

Monday dawned cold and wet. It’s been raining heavily here in Sydney, and there are several flooding incidents around the city and the surrounding region. The rain hasn’t let up all day, and we’re in for more overnight and tomorrow.

After doing some grocery shopping in the morning, I spent most of the day assembling Irregular Webcomic! strips and then writing annotations for them, to complete this latest batch of comics. After doing that I had a bit of time to go through photos I took on the weekend trip. I’ve identified all the birds I took photos of, and am quite amazed that I got photos of three new species I hadn’t photographed before, so that’s pretty good!

New content today:

Irregular photography

I finished writing the last few Irregular Webcomics in a batch and then spent this afternoon photographing the scenes. I’ll assemble them over the next few days.

Not much else to report. I’m just holding my breath with the COVID news here in Sydney every day, wondering if they’re going to announce new travel restrictions or not. Given we are planning to leave on Friday for a weekend away in the countryside, it’ll be disappointing if cases rise enough to disrupt that.

New content today:

A recovery day

I had a bit of an interrupted sleep last night, and woke up still quite tired. I ended up taking it pretty easy today, mostly working on writing a new batch of Irregular Webcomic! scripts.

I also took Scully out twice, for a morning walk, and then to to the park to meet other dogs and owners in the late afternoon. While there, I popped into the bakery that is a short walk away to get a loaf of sourdough and also some burger buns for dinner. They didn’t have any buns left, but they did have a challah loaf, which looked somewhat similar to the brioche-like buns they have. I don’t think I’ve ever had challah before, but it looked good, and I figured I could cut it into sections the right size for a burger and then split them horizontally.

When I got home, I realised the challah was much denser and heavier than the brioche buns, and trying it it was a little sweet, which I hadn’t expected at all. Nevertheless, I sliced it up and we used it as burger buns (for chick pea and lentil patty burgers, with cheese, tomato, and beetroot). It was actually really delicious. I think the rest of the challah will go quickly. It seems like it would be an ideal bread for French toast, too.

New content today:

Getting back up to speed

I was up to 2am last night, with my ISO Photography Standards meeting, as explained yesterday. The meeting chair kept things moving and was meticulous with keeping discussion to time, so we didn’t go late, and the meeting ended as scheduled at 2am Sydney time (midday in New York City). By the time I brushed my teeth and otherwise prepared for bed it was about 20 minute past – an incredibly late night for me.

I woke this morning around 7am, since one late night isn’t enough to trigger a change of morning rising habit, so I didn’t get a normal night’s sleep. So now as late evening approaches, I’m pretty tired already…. but have to stay up again and participate in technical discussion until 2am all over again. I just have to keep the finish line of Friday night in mind.

Today I worked on a new batch of Irregular Webcomic! strips – the first new ones I’ve been able to make since I injured my hand. I didn’t have time to write a normal full batch of 20 strips (4 weeks worth), only managing to write 10 before I decided I had to go ahead and start photographing and assembling, because I need new strips ready for tomorrow night’s update when the guest strips sent by Chris Burke run out.

Normally I take the photos when my wife and Scully are out of the house, because it involves a big mess all over the living room floor as I lay out all my Lego boxes. However with my wife working from home at the moment due to COVID-19, it’s difficult to find such times. Fortunately today was Scully’s 6-weekly grooming appointment at the dog groomer. So I dropped her off and then rushed through taking the Lego photos while she at least was out of the house.

The dog groomer moved premises recently, and this was the first time we’d been to the new premises. It’s really nice, in a more modern building (the move was because the previous building is going to be demolished for redevelopment), with more space for the all the dogs in daycare. Scully was a bit nervous at first because she didn’t know what this new place was about, but as soon as she recognised the groomer she was happy.

Now, to kill another hour or so and then try to stay alert through three hours of technical standards work…

New content today: