Sunday, November 22, 2015

Economics Sundays 1: TANSTAAFM

The title acronym is shamelessly stolen from Robert A. Heinlein; his aphorism was that There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch, but it's just as true that There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Market. All markets are unfree, and what we have to decide is how regulated they ought to be.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

State of the Silas

Today, I had possibly the best reason to go to Harbor Freight, which is a seller of crap-but-cheap tools, hand, electrical, and even air-powered. I got my impact wrench there, after scoring a compressor for free when the people across the street decided they could get by with a smaller one. Today, I needed more of those blue rubber gloves (I use them when preparing chicken, since it makes cleaning my hands much easier and less water-intensive) and a leather punch, because the belt I've been wearing recently (a replacement for my much-abused Swedish army belt, which lasted me twenty years!) had become too loose. I needed an extra hole, and we didn't own a punch. Now we do.

What makes this even better is the fact that one of my brain pills has a side effect of weight gain. It's harder than ever for me to keep my weight down (my mother can attest to my struggles; I simply enjoy food, and tend to thicken at the waist) but I'm managing it. That's cause for celebration.

Friday, April 10, 2015


I try not to be an asshole. Unfortunately, many culturally problematic things never really sink in until you're on the receiving end. Today, I learned what it's like to be on the receiving end of appropriation.

Everyone assumes that using the language of other cultures is respectful, whether it's spoken language or nonverbal language. It can be - but sometimes it isn't.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

"It's only a joke!"

Today is April 1st, which is otherwise known as the worst day on the internet. Everyone thinks it's funny to tell plausible lies, and everyone thinks it's my fault I'm upset because I should have known better than to believe them.

Fuck that noise, I say. Do not wilfully damage people's trust in you. Put on a silly hat, or make your lies so utterly outrageous that they cannot possibly be mistaken for real. The onus is on you, as the perpetrator, to ensure that your pranks are not harmful. You do NOT blame the victim. Ever. In any situation.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Overthinking a computer game

I play computer games with friends. We tend to go for co-operative experiences, and they're usually shooters. Currently, my friends' main game is Payday 2, which is morally reprehensible in that the players are acting as criminals, cavalierly murdering armies of police, security guards, and occasionally people who just happened to get in the way. However, we have a hypothesis, thanks to my friends Chad and Chuck, as to why it's all OK: clones. Cloning explains everything.

Friday, January 9, 2015

Hugo eligibility? Really?

It turns out that Winter Bride is in fact eligible for a Hugo Award nomination, in the category of Best Short Story. I don't expect to even be nominated, let alone win, but I'm happy enough to simply be eligible.