Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


decay & ruin
Biosphere II
dead malls
Irving housing

got that wrong

appropriate tech
Arduino μcontrollers
Backwoods Home
Fractal antenna

fun social media stuff

(nobody does!)

Like my brownhouse:
   when one smells feces
Thursday, June 1 2006

setting: Woodland Hills, California


In terms of the actual work I'm doing here in Los Angeles, I'm actually starting to enjoy it. The fun is in the complicated DHTML I've been doing. On one page I've made it so that when one makes a selection change on a dropdown menu all of a sudden other form items are greyed-out. The underlying logic to make this happen is a set of complicated business rules that have to be incorporated into the Javascript. I do what I always do in these situations, defining the rules in long strings delimited by pipes and dashes.

Meanwhile I was still dealing with one of Mike's projects, one that had developed a serious rift between the carefully defined logic of its spec and the evolving wishes of the customer. Phone calls were no longer transpiring in a civil manner. In the end Mike decided we should get together somewhere midway between our places for dinner to talk about what to do. We decided on an Indian Place called Taj Mahal on Ventura Blvd.
As I was driving east down Ventura the Boulevard before me was clear and perfectly-illuminated by warm light. I didn't even think about it, but that light was coming from a sunset that was blinding motorists heading west. I nearly collided with someone who suddenly pulled out in front of me in his chunky white SUV.
I showed up at Taj Mahal a little before Mike and, because it had been that sort of day, ordered a huge Taj Mahal beer (this beverage product has no relation to the restaurant aside from nation of origin). There were only a few people scattered around the dining room at the time and the maitre'd didn't have much to do. So he demanded to see my ID, and when I produced it he put on his spectacles so as to better scrutinize it. Then, as I sat there drinking my beer, he kept staring at me, and then looking away whenever I'd catch him.
When Mike showed up, he also had to show his ID.

After dinner we drove to a nearby The Coffee Bean where we drank caffeinated beverages and strategized about our most nagging web project. Nubile teenage girls kept filing past and Mike made the observation, "...that's why there's a law." Indeed, nobody has felt the need to, say, make a law banning the eating of glass.
Usually when one smells feces, even just a hint of them for the briefest instant, there can be no doubt that what is being smelled is indeed fecal in origin. At that point it's a good idea to inspect the bottom of your shoe, scan the floor, or grab a scoop and head to the litter box. But for some reason this Los Angeles trip has produced two occasions where I smelled feces but couldn't prove conclusively that the fragrance had its source in somebody's rectum. The first was the bouquet of some very expensive Planters Gold Anguilla Rum Mike gave me the other day. I can't quite place what it is, whether it's a hint of feces or a dash of decaying corpse, but whatever it is people are willing to pay extra for it. My main problem is with it is its high sugar content, but I've been drinking it anyway.
The other thing that smelled a little like poo but probably wasn't was that cup of iced coffee I had this evening at The Coffee Bean.

Mike and I convoyed back to Luc's place and we stood around talking (mostly shop talk) and drinking wine in the kitchen.

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