Berries!!!

Jul. 22nd, 2017 05:35 pm
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[personal profile] ceelove
So you know that drought we haven't had this past spring? You know how rain makes things grow? You know how I have a wild obsessive-compulsive love for berry picking? (You do now!)

This is by way of saying that I'm going berrying again tomorrow morning, having verified today that the Fells are resplendent with berries. Mostly tiny wild blueberries now, with a few black raspberries, and huckleberries soon to ripen.

Yes, you may come with me. Yes, you may ask me where I go, but understand that I suck at directions and maps, I really only know landmarks, so I'm vastly better at taking people than sending people. (If you come with me, though, understand that I wasn't kidding about that obsessive-compulsive thing: I can happily pick for hours.)

My First Superfuzzy!

Jul. 21st, 2017 04:36 am
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[personal profile] xiphmont

At first I thought a bird hit the window. I opened it to check for casualties, and in she fluttered...

I've been waiting a long time to see a polyphemus in person. She's battered and spent, but still beautiful.

Middle Eastern food?

Jul. 20th, 2017 05:51 pm
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[personal profile] cos posting in [community profile] davis_square
We were in Davis Square a couple of evenings ago when someone said they wanted Middle Eastern food. Other than Amsterdam Falafel, I couldn't think of anywhere right there. I know Sabur in Teele Sq, which is kind of Middle Eastern (and pretty fancy). Googling around didn't turn up anything else in Davis Square, though I found a Lebanese place on Mass Ave nearby which I don't remember trying. Anyone know of any Middle Eastern food in Davis Square, or others a short walk away that you like?
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[personal profile] desireearmfeldt posting in [community profile] davis_square
Anyone else getting constant flyovers most days and (more annoying) 2-4 large, low, LOUD flyovers between 10:45 pm and midnight every night?

City of Somerville advises you to call Massport and also 311 to report your complaint: http://www.somervillema.gov/departments/programs/reporting-airplane-noise

Massport politely took my complaint and promised me a written report.  311 said "people should totally call us about issues, no one ever calls us!", politely took my complaint, and said that various elected officials (including Rosetti, Capuano and some third person I'm forgetting, possibly the mayor) have been trying to get this mitigated, but not necessarily to much effect.

Why are you not louder?

Jul. 15th, 2017 11:57 am
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[personal profile] fj

In the 90s, there were plenty of opportunities for me to sero-convert. What kept me negative was luck, and wanting only to top, and iron discipline in my practices. That discipline (and my guilt the few times I lapsed) came from the memories I have of people who had become poz before anything was known about the virus expressing to me, especially while managing their live with AIDS, how urgently they wanted me to stay negative. I remember arriving at a play party in 1993 in San Francisco and seeing and greeting Max who was there socially, and how immediately, out of nowhere, he put his hand in a bowl of condoms, grabbed a few, and handed them to me and telling me to make sure I always had some and to use them. He hadn't gone much beyond small-talk before that. Don't do this, was the message from the ones sick and dying, we know better now. Stay healthy.

At the same time, plenty of urban poz and PWAs at the time were creating a rebel mystique about how HIV / AIDS was another marker of having been thrown out of society and being counter-cultural if not outright edgy and hot. Of course HIV created its own aesthetic of danger in the communities that had it, and poz people deserved it because they were not garbage to be shunned, as much of society was treating them at the time. They were still sexual and alive and worthy and their sexuality was real and valid. But personally, I found glamorizing the punk of HIV / AIDS, (yes, at the time still also AIDS, you couldn't really hold the AIDS part back much) to the point that people WANTED to earn that bio-hazard tat, well, too much. I carried Max and other older men warning me in my head with me for years. Don't fucking be stupid. You know better. Many voices out there trying to keep us negative young men negative. "Don't end up like me." They would be disappointed and heart-broken at one more person to worry about and maybe lose, and I looked up to them.

I am thinking about that now because while HIV became manageable, the other thing I encountered first on that trip to San Francisco, meth, is not. It's been in my life 25 years now peripherally, and recently has tripled in force as I have become close to a number of people who are barely managing, or trying to climb out of a relapse, or fucking succumbing to it. They are, in my opinion, spectacular human beings whose addiction is stopping them from being the forces of light they have every right to be in this world that so needs their light. Meth is now closer to home than ever.

Here in London fucking club drugs are fucking everywhere, utterly normalized, as is binge drinking. One of my closest friends here told me how he literally can't go dancing any more because the drugs make him feel so awful in the mornings. When I tell him one can dance sober, he dismisses me: it is not the same, and sober it is so much less it is not worth doing. In this culture, a month of being sober is considered a feat of fortitude enough to justify fundraising for doing it. And yes, it gets to me: sometimes I feel like my abstinence means something is wrong with me. That is just how being a social species works.
New friends always wonder a little when they find out I don't and haven't done club drugs, tell me a little MDMA would be fun, discuss the quality of coke to be had openly. I'm pretty sure that if I smoked a little hit of meth at a "chill-out", just once to know what it was like, just a smoke man, nothing major, inhaled once, all under control, and then had sex with some guy for the next 8 hours, most of my gay friends would pat me on the back, and only my straights would be worried. And maybe they shouldn't be worried. Maybe it was only a little hit just to find things out. Doesn't mean I'll go out of control right away. Totally overblown worry. Lots of guys do a little meth on weekends. Right?

Yet yet yet yet. I know so many gays for whom it is no longer a little fun treat, especially now they are sober. Losing relationships, jobs, NA meetings, relapses. Seared in my brain is this memory of standing on a street in New York and hearing this amazing person tell me "You know, the weirdest thing about addiction is how it makes the outrageous seem like a good idea. Injecting yourself with tap water because you are out of sterile seems totally normal all of a sudden."

I was horrified to hear there was such a thing as a bare-backing party in 1992, or that they knowingly allowed bug-chasers. But then I got told I needed to be cool and respect bodily autonomy and other people's decisions. Now I look at the remnants of that sex&death edginess (thanks, Treasure Island Media), take my PrEP, and smirk at guys excitedly talking about wanting "toxic poz loads". Shut up, asshole, there's no such thing anymore unless you are dumb enough to be with someone dumb enough to not take daily meds and lose the undetectable status.

Slamming is now the frontier here for the out there and cool, the tragic messes to be revered for their plugged-inness and the reality they are serving, away from us bourgeois sell-outs to marriage and suburbia. The guys I am close to I mentioned before truly do not want to do it any more, but they seem utterly alone in there. The one thing I am not hearing is anything inside their culture even trying to hold them back. There seem to be no Maxes, nobody who has been there, telling them it is a bad idea, or even metaphorically yanking a syringe away from them in some sense.

On the hook-up apps there is barely any filter, anybody moderating for what we KNOW are the keywords: chill-out, PnP, HnH, High and Horny, Slamming, Slam, Zlam. I see them every time on my grid, they reach out to me even though my profile says fuck no to that. I know tech, I know what is a real effort and what is half-hearted lip-service (surprise, they are doing only the latter). I know a bot could filter all of the profiles better than they are even trying, and filter chats real-time, and flag them up  for review instantly, but nobody in charge of the comms seems really desiring to do and be this prescriptive. How would they, why would they--I remember the Marketing dude for one big hookup fetish website, previously Marketing dude for another hook-up website, being at every major gay fetish party I was at for 3 years on two continents, eyes wider and buggier every time, until I did not, and have not, seen him around for the last few years. Facilitating chemsex makes the sites money over facilitating sober sex, and if they are on it themselves, because everyone is, because everyone can handle their drugs on a weekend, right, why would they clamp down? Why would our culture clamp down? It's just a bit of fun. A little release. Adults can handle it.

Twenty years ago there were voices from inside the community telling us to stay negative, not just external agencies and helpful initiatives. I remember going into cruising spots and finding community workers handing out condoms. I am not hearing, or hearing of, voices from inside the sex and especially chemsex community, on-line, off-line, organically saying, don't do this. It will kill you. I've been there. I barely got out. Stop.

We knew where men had sex and showed up. We know where the fucking dealers live now. Everyone knows who they are at the parties.

They say nobody proselytizes against a sin more than reformed sinners, but sometimes it feels to me like meth is bucking that trend. I hope it is just me being so out of touch with this culture I do not know where to look.

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[personal profile] xiphmont

Remember a few weeks ago when I expressed some dissatisfaction with my AmScope's picture quality?

Well, I've put another iron in the fire: Collecting parts off eBay to build a once-top-of-the-line Olympus SZH. Now waiting for more bits to start trickling in.

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[personal profile] mem_winterhill posting in [community profile] davis_square
I'm sensing a new civic engagement period underway--which I hope will persist. But it may be instructive to hear about previous periods of this as well.

Via Mike Connolly on twitter: https://twitter.com/MikeConnollyMA/status/885681479883395072

http://www.cambridgeday.com/2017/07/13/radical-gathers-activists-from-60s-today-to-look-at-the-history-and-future-of-protest/

TL,DR + Event details: Historians, 60s activists, current activists will speak to activism in our area and in their eras. "There’s one more treat in store: In addition to panel discussions, there will be a free custom ice cream flavor from Toscanini’s made in honor of the 1960s." I have no idea what 60s ice cream is.

July 29
11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
lecture hall of the Cambridge Main Library
449 Broadway, Mid-Cambridge

More Help Wanted

Jul. 13th, 2017 02:03 pm
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[personal profile] xela

Damn, it's been a month since I posted. Things are looking up in general — I started what's already a much longer post maybe three weeks ago about a small round of good luck, not least of which is the place I'm moving to, and I've been adding to it in fits and starts since. But right now, I'm really pressed for time. So ... later!

My Help Wanted post a month ago yielded amazing results — thank you! I couldn't be happier with the people I hired to help me on y'all's recommendations. But of course the problem with people who are good is that they tend to also be busy. In particular, the two-man crew who've been doing the tote-that-barge, lift-that-bale work will next be available to me on Tuesday July 18. But I could really, really use some help bringing stuff up from the basement this weekend. So if anyone knows anybody who'd be up for that kind of work and might be available on short notice, please let me know.

And thank you!

[personal profile] ron_newman posting in [community profile] davis_square
Because of threatened rain tomorrow night, the Friday night part of ArtBeat, in Seven Hills Park, will instead take place Saturday night, after the regularly scheduled Saturday daytime ArtBeat events.

Full information here: http://somervilleartscouncil.org/artbeat/2017

Library review: Cowboy, Sumo Rest

Jul. 13th, 2017 09:02 am
[personal profile] dmaze
The other end of the Erlang experiment is the libraries I was working with. My application was built on the Sumo Rest stack, built on top of the Erlang Cowboy HTTP server.

I found this finicky and prone to vague runtime errors. That's not important, though. The overall style of the system was pretty reasonable, and is probably a good way to write REST services in general.

Read more... )

The layout implications of this are useful and generic: one source file per type, where each type file defines its storage, serialization, and documentation; and one source file per route, where each route file has its own URL path, complete machine-processable documentation and metadata, and understands the standard failure cases. You just need the right high-level REST library in your language of choice to support this.

Programming language review: Erlang

Jul. 13th, 2017 08:27 am
[personal profile] dmaze
What do you get if you combine Haskell's basic functional style, Lisp's type system and object representation, a unique concurrency system, and a very good runtime?

Read more... )

In short, Erlang looks like a good language, a little dated, but I'd rather have good static checking and a robust library stack than an excellent runtime with okay libraries, especially if I can avoid peeking "under the hood".

Flood issues in Medford

Jul. 12th, 2017 08:44 pm
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[personal profile] gingicat posting in [community profile] davis_square
Hello, this is Captain Barry Clemente with an informational message. DPW will be working during the night due to the rain and flooding. They are available at 781-393-2445 and will respond to any flooding in the streets. If you have an emergency, call 911. Thank-you.
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[personal profile] mem_winterhill posting in [community profile] davis_square
I just found out about this meeting, which includes a citizen science project about urban wildlife.

https://mysticriver.org/calendar/2017/7/11/committee-meeting

We will be joined by Megan Whatton, Habitat Network Project Manager with The Nature Conservancy at 7:00 p.m. Habitat Network is a collaboration between The Nature Conservancy and the Cornell Lab of Ornithology in a citizen science project to bring people together to explore the collective impact transforming yards and urban spaces into more diverse habitat can have on wildlife and the nature around us. Megan Whatton the Project manager for the Conservancy will introduce this program, demo its use, and the application and benefit a program like this can have on those living and working in the Mystic River Watershed.

[snip]

We meet at Tufts University, Jonathon M. Tisch College of Citizenship & Public Service, Lincoln Filene Hall, Rabb Room, 10 Upper Campus Road, Medford, MA 02155

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[personal profile] elramsay posting in [community profile] davis_square
 Landscaping with Novel Native Shrubs
 
Professor Jessica Lubell will give a presentation on native shrubs that are adaptable to tough conditions — such as the readily available Rhus and Juniperus, as well as lesser-known taxa like Aronia, Diervilla, Prunus, Myrica, Corylus, and Spiraea. She will discuss her wide-ranging research on this subject, including controlled studies on the adaptability of native shrubs, and improved methods of nursery propagation to increase the availability of native taxa. This talk will be enlightening to all who landscape with natives. Dr. Jessica Lubell is an Associate Professor of Horticulture at the University of Connecticut, with 15 years of experience working with the horticulture industry. 
 
All Somerville Garden Club meetings are free and open to the public.  In addition to the lecture, there will be the usual Q and A and raffle. 7-9pm. Meetings are held the at the Tufts Administration Building, (TAB),167 Holland Street, second floor, wheelchair accessible. Parking is available, and the building is a ten-minute walk from the Davis Square MBTA stop.

Also, Stop by and see us at ArtBeat, Saturday, July 15. We'll be in Seven Hills Park.
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[personal profile] dougo posting in [community profile] davis_square
Frozen Hoagies, the ice cream & cookie shop on Broadway in Powderhouse Square, has been selling day-old cookies at three for a dollar, or six for a dollar later in the evening. And lately they've had quite a lot still left by the end of the day. I asked what they do with two-day-old cookies, and was told "I think we throw them away". I almost bought the whole basketful but I was too embarrassed! Anyway, in my experience cookies can stay fresh enough for at least a week in a cookie jar, so it seems a shame for these to go to waste.

Sigh, Super Late Update

Jul. 9th, 2017 11:14 pm
[personal profile] tirinian
Everything frays and falls apart, the center cannot hold. Too hosed with everything, and don't know what to give up, but lets see what I've done:

Monday the 19th: Seafall! Raided Killbot, for my first pc-pc raid of the game. Still feels like it's stalled.
Tuesday the 20th: Auria! The second half of harrock's coup.
Wednesday the 21st: Dunno. Possibly nothing.
Thursday the 22nd: Sophisticate came over for a massage.
Friday the 23rd-Sunday the 25th: That was the weekend of "everyone is gone", so I don't think there was a lot, but I don't remember details anymore. Work on Saturday, Brunch with housemates on Sunday, I think.
Monday the 26th: Torino canceled, so nothing, I think?
27th: Auria! Puttering around investigating what colors mean for "detect evil" results, and looking at our neighbors to the east.
28th: The LARP Teacher came over for a massage.
29th: Went out with brilit. Plan was to go to The Melting Pot, but apparently you can only get in with reservations, so we wound up at a Border Cafe out in the 'burbs (who knew they were a chain! And it was super chain-y, while still also being clearly a Border Cafe!). Then played The Captain Is Dead.
30th: Wonder Woman with ilhander. I quite liked it. They got Diana mostly right (not necessarily exactly how I think of her, but a good version of Warrior Princess Hero), as opposed to trying to make all DC heros Grim'n'Gritty Batman, which I think has been there problem for several movies now.
1st: Dragon Chapter End, the rescue of Tsai Suyin. Then party at Killbot's.
2nd: Civ VI and dinner at Tedlandia, then work, I think.
3rd: Some work, early Seafall 'cause we were officially closed, BBQ at Germany's.
4th: Work work work, then Fireworks! With germany, with guest appearances by fireworksboi and the tibbettses & sniffens.
5th: I think that was mostly a down day?
6th: Warhammer RPG - talking to the underworld, and run in with some Skavin.
7th: Rome GM meeting - long live the eternal city!
8th: Work until Late.
9th: Went to Brunch at S&S and Oasis spa with Killbot, then work for a while.

Ahhhh Ants

Jul. 9th, 2017 05:49 pm
[personal profile] antproblems posting in [community profile] davis_square
I live near Davis Square, and I've recently realized that I've got a carpenter ant problem - the little jerks came out of nowhere, and now they're exploring all over my apartment. They are not focused on any one area (no trail to follow), and they are concentrated in a few rooms (with crummy windows), so I think the nest may be outside. Any recommendations to go back to an ant-free existence?
Edit to add: I do have a cat, and would prefer not to poison her.

Casper mattress pop up store??

Jul. 9th, 2017 05:00 pm
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[personal profile] cassandra_beach posting in [community profile] davis_square
I didn't have time to stop but it looks like there is a Casper mattress pop up store (or showroom) in the parking lot across from the Rosebud diner. Did I misread the sign and this is something else?

If this is a pop up store.... um... WTF? I recall a food truck set up in that space a while back and while there are some issues with that (like competing with bricks + mortar stores) ... that is pretty different than a mattress store.

Anyone have any info on this?
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