Category Archives: Meanwhile

The Hazel Wood

The Hazel Wood

I went out to the hazel wood,
Because a fire was in my head,
And cut and peeled a hazel wand,
And hooked a berry to a thread;
And when white moths were on the wing,
And moth-like stars were flickering out,
I dropped the berry in a stream
And caught a little silver trout.

When I had laid it on the floor
I went to blow the fire aflame,
But something rustled on the floor,
And some one called me by my name:
It had become a glimmering girl
With apple blossom in her hair
Who called me by my name and ran
And faded through the brightening air.

Though I am old with wandering
Through hollow lands and hilly lands,
I will find out where she has gone,
And kiss her lips and take her hands;
And walk among long dappled grass,
And pluck till time and times are done
The silver apples of the moon,
The golden apples of the sun.

— William Butler Yeats

Hosting nightmares

I had to change web hosts. The old one was down way too often. Unfortunately, this one seems to be not without their own set of issues. Still trying to find out why Unicode characters didn’t import right into the database and why .htaccess configurations continue to fail. Hmmm…

Oh and for some reason the old theme doesn’t like the new server. It was time to go anyway. Thanks for all the fish! I’ll figure something out as we go along.

Pot, Kettle, Black

Check out this headline:

China says it opposes threatening Iran with war

Now check this out:

China renews Taiwan threat of war

Or this:

China Threatens War Escalation Over Bush Handshake

Or this:

China Threatens War With Taiwan by 2008

Maybe if China backs off on saber-rattling Taiwan then we can talk about your Iran concerns…

UPDATE: It never ends… China warns U.N. Taiwan independence moves “gravely endangering” peace

Creating a TextMate Drag Command for xml-stylesheet

Applying CSS to an XML file is easy, well supported in modern browsers, and can be quite handy at times. For instance, slap some lipstick on that RSS feed. Sick of the tag soup of HTML-land? Make the switch to pure XML web pages with xml-stylesheet!

And now a quick tip for simplifying your venture into xml-stylesheet for TextMate users…

You can create a Bundle Item in TextMate that works just like the CSS Drag Command. Here’s what to do:

  1. In TextMate, choose Bundles > Bundle Editor > Show Bundle Editor.
  2. Click on the “plus” button at the bottom right of the Bundle Editor window and choose New Drag Command…
  3. Name it something like Insert xml-stylesheet.
  4. Enter css in the File Types field.
  5. Now for the money shot – in the Commands textarea, enter the following code:
  6. In the Scope Selector field, enter text.xml
  7. Close the Bundle Editor and choose Bundles > Bundle Editor > Reload Bundles

Now you may simply drag your CSS file from the TextMate file drawer into your XML document and a link to the CSS file will be generated by xml-stylesheet. Fill out the rest of the properties as needed.

As you can see, the prototype for linking a CSS file in XML is strikingly similar to regular HTML. It accepts the same properties. Type and href are required, the rest are optional.

One pitfall in XML CSS: Many browsers do not grok .foo syntax in your css file. Instead you may use *[class="foo"]. Be sure to declare your IDs in your DOCTYPE, such as:

< !ELEMENT foobar (#PCDATA)>
< !ATTLIST foobar id ID #REQUIRED>

8 Random Things

I’ve been hit with a meme. I usually ignore these. It’s like getting hit with a tax bill. Or a subpoena. But for a couple of reasons I’m following up on this one. First of all, it came about because of very special circumstances that are close to me – a person whom I have never (probably) met, but who crossed paths with me when I was very young. Second, because I have a raging case of ennui (I feel so Henry Miller) this afternoon and need something to move me forward. Lastly, this reminds me that I need to stay a bit more up to date my primary node contacts in the blogosphere.

The rules for this meme are:

  1. Let others know who tagged you.
  2. Players start with 8 random facts about themselves.
  3. Those who are tagged should post these rules and their 8 random facts.
  4. Players should tag 8 other people and notify them they have been tagged.

Eight random facts. About me? Hmmmm… OK, I think in the spirit of this exercise, I am going to avoid talking about anything obvious such as “I play the bass” or “I speak a little Mandarin.” I’ll have to think about this one. Here goes:

  1. I almost always wear black. I’m not a goth or some depressing artiste or something. That’s just my innate preference. I don’t know why – someone who I had not seen in over 20 years pointed this out to me last October at an event at my old high school Athenian last October by saying “I remember you used to always wear black.” I was in fact wearing a black shirt under a gray suit with a long black overcoat. What can I say? I’m a winter, not a summer…
  2. Cloudy, misty, foggy, cool weather is my favorite climate. I’m not big on hot or even warm weather. Again, this has nothing to do with the wearing black thing.
  3. My Myers-Briggs personality type is ENTP. This is generally classified as extremely creative, scholarly, verbose, and really terrible at follow-through. Nothing could be more true on that last point at least… 😉
  4. I began playing the double bass at the age of nine and started guitar around twelve. I planned to major in both until it was recommended that I narrow it down to one for NEC – where I settled on the double bass. To this day I still practice both. This may very well be related to my ENTP-ness as mentioned previously.
  5. I am writing out a blog post for this meme, when I should be finishing up my homework! 😉
  6. I think I may have had celiac-like symptoms as early as at age 25. I was finally diagnosed two years ago, at 37. After going gluten-free, I can truly say that I haven’t felt this healthy since my early 20’s.
  7. I have had a strong feeling for the past couple of years that civility has been mostly lost from society. I was particularly pleased to see that the person who memed (is that a verb now?) me had also recently blogged on this very same subject.
  8. For some odd reason, I am fascinated with remote human habitation in extreme climates or remote locations. Some that have caught my attention include Svalbard, Tristan da Cunha, and space habitats.

OK now to assign some pumpkins:

  1. Michael
  2. Matt
  3. Jason A.
  4. Jason H.
  5. Steph
  6. Brandon
  7. Seamaiden
  8. Ellen

There you go – my one and only, and probably final contribution to blogmemedom. I think I have less ennui now, because I have this pressing urge to finish my homework.