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:
   pieced-together ruin
Sunday, February 18 2024
As Gretchen and I played a collaborative game of Spelling Bee in front of the woodstove this morning, Gretchen as in contact with our uphill neighbor A, who was also playing collaboratively with her boyfriend Jamie. At the time, they had one word left to go before getting all the words ("queen bee"). We quickly got to within one word ourselves, with the last word being "nomad." Then A texted to say that Jamie had gotten their last word, which was "diatom." She looked up the word and soon learned that diatoms are responsible for creating most of the Earth's atmospheric oxygen. Later I would read about diatoms on Wikipedia and be surprised to learn that such an important organism didn't arise until the early Jurassic, that is, after the first mammals.
Late this morning, Gretchen went off to see a movie with Sarah the Vegan, someone she hadn't seen much of for the past year or more. Later Gretchen took the dogs on a play date to the house of one of her friends named Kaycee, the one with a houndlike dog named Athena.

Meanwhile I had that between-things feeling that sometimes manifests as malaise. But I was drinking a lot of kratom tea, almost enough to feel ill from it. Somehow, though, I threaded the needle for hours, feeling happy and as if the world was full of opportunities instead of threats. It was comparable, I think, to a fairly good opioid high. But it lasted longer. In this state I was thinking that perhaps I should reorganize the laboratory to make room for a little music studio so I could experiment with piecing together music using modern computer-based editing tools and a ready-to-go system of amplifiers, mixers, microphones, and what not. In the southwest corner of the laboratory is a table set up with an old Socket-7 motherboard (the kind with ISA connectors) for use testing or running ancient equipment. But I never use any of that setup except for its power supply, which is a good source for solid 5 and 12 volt power. So that's one place I could reorganize things. In keeping with this vision, today I used superglue to piece together the shards from a ceramic cup I'd shattered over a year ago and then put on that table in the laboratory's southwest corner. (This was a cup Gretchen had bought in a village on the Baltic coast of Germany back in 2019.) I'd partially pieced the cup together in the past but then given up because it was such a mess and the work was so demoralizing. Even once I'd put the cup back together, it was a disjointed wreck that could never hold water. But I like the pieced-together ruin look it now has, so I put it on display next to another very fragile object (a glass pig) on a shelf behind the upstairs bathroom's toilet.
Later this evening, the kratom kept me up despite a 150 mg dose of diphenhydramine, and I resumed work on grafting the keyboard from an older Chromebook into a newer Chromebook. I ended up with a fairly-functional device, though there were a few plastic posts in the newer Chromebook that were not finding matching holes in the only-partially-compatible older keyboard. I didn't want to take it all apart to remove those posts, so I popped off various keys and used a curved set of needle-nosed pliers to remove the posts as best I could. This worked pretty well, but eventually I broke one of the tiny plastic pieces of the E key while popping it off. "No problem," I thought, "I'll just replace those pieces with the ones from the older keyboard!" But it turned out those little pieces have a different design in the older keyboard, so that E key will never be replaced. (Not that I didn't try to glue the tiny broken pieces back together using acetone, but of course that didn't work.) I can still push on the little rubber dome where it had been to type an "E," but it looks ghetto that way.

Today while reading about Shoegaze music (to better contextualize Squirrel Flower's noisier songs), I learned about a subgenre called Black Gaze. From the name you might think this is some sort of intriguing combination of Shoegaze and hip hop (that's something someone should do!), but no, it's Shoegaze with elements of Black Metal. I had to hear what that sounded like, as the things I don't like about Black Metal might be solved by an overlay of Shoegaze. So I downloaded the complete discography of French Black Gaze band Alcest (I actually had to pay for their 2019 album Spiritual Instinct, as it wasn't on Bittorrent). My favorite song so far is "Sapphire," which to my ear sounds more Shoegaze than metal. I love the melodic wall-of-sound guitar riffs, the tempo changes, and the melodic quality of the undistorted singing.

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