Category Archives: meta

chops

no, not Chopp’s, chops… the signature stamps that are traditionally used on chinese artwork.

i got some.

chops
chops – one says “SHALEMENDUO” and the other one says “RONG”

the one on the left says 沙了門多 which is prounounced SHĀ-LE-MÉN-DUŌ which is the closest the guy could get to “SALAMANDIR”.

SHĀ-LE-MÉN-DUŌ means “SAND-UP-DOOR-MANY”, which is, essentially, meaningless. it’s just a name chop.

"WRONG" or "DIFFERENT"
“WRONG” or “DIFFERENT”
the one on the right says 蝾 which is pronounced RÓNG, and it means “SALAMANDER”.

and i think it’s kind of interesting that the word for “SALAMANDER” is RÓNG

i made a chop several years ago, that says “CHIGAU” which means “DIFFERENT” or “WRONG”… but it’s backwards.

meta spam

i got spam the other day.

big surprise…

i reported it to the upstream provider, as i usually do. one of the upstream addresses to which i sent a report was [email protected]

today i got a return receipt from that address. it said “Не прочтено” which means “not read”.

seriously, i wonder why a company as big as Rostieliekom would maintain an “[email protected]” address and not have it respond to an abuse report. 😕

hrmph…

yeah, i’m still here…

i was cleaning up in the workshop today and i found the keys to the thule box, which i had to have new ones made several months ago when i wanted to use the thule box for something and couldn’t find the keys. they were sitting on the surface of my secondary workbench, under a massive pile of other projects (at least 5, going back to last summer) which either got abandoned, or the detritus from finishing never got cleaned up. i didn’t finish cleaning up, but i made a significant start. maybe tomorrow.

i’ve got my DX7 on my desk, because i want to work with reason to find some synth voices that i don’t have to tweak, so that the next time i go to bellingham i’ll have something ready to play live. about half of the time that i spent playing music last week was actually tweaking the voices to get something that didn’t sound like it was part of a pop song. i would use the DX7 voices except for the fact that the internal battery is dead, and i have to take the synth completely apart to replace it. fortunately the battery is really common (i have a couple of them that are still in their blister pack), but replacing it is something that i think i want to have help with, much in the same way that i needed help replacing the brake pads in my old car… not that i don’t know how to do it, but someone who knows how to do it to make sure that i don’t do things incorrectly, and to help if something breaks.

this is after taking my piano to bellingham, in the hopes of being able to use that, but one of the first things that was done to it after i left was that one of the tines was broken (number 50) and, until a replacement is found, the piano is currently in storage in the attic, which is doubtless a lot safer place for it than where it was, under the window in my living room.

but, as much as i would like to, the probability that i will be going to bellingham in the next few weeks is low, because of the looming moisture festival and its surrounding chaos.

the moisture festival is approaching at an appalling rate, and i am, once again, playing in three out of the four bands at the palladium: The Fighting Instruments of Karma, Snake Suspenderz and The Fremont Philharmonic. i have rehearsed and/or played with snake suspenderz (or significant portions thereof) and the fremont phil enough recently to know that we’re probably going to do okay, but we could use more rehearsal, and i haven’t played with the FIOK enough to be absolutely certain that we need more rehearsal, but probably aren’t going to get it. i’m still ambivalent about my participation in the moisture festival, but my vocal ranting has been dissipated somewhat by the inclusion of snake suspenderz in the lineup of show bands… but i didn’t donate $100 last year to get a star on the wall, like i did two years ago, and, unless the “stipend” is well above where it was last year, it’s not likely that i’m going to donate this year either.

today has been a banner day for people or robots trying to crack my shit… once again, i will advise you that if you try to login using anything other than the correct username and password, you get two attempts and then you are IP blocked for two weeks. after that, you get two more attempts and then you are blocked for a month. here’s a final hint: the username is NOT admin. 😛

spam comment update

i adjusted the settings on my Limit Login Attempts plugin again, so that the first attempted login as “admin” (or anything other than the correct login name) results in a 720 minute (12 hour) block, and the second attempted login results in a 672 hour (28 day) block…

and STILL i have an estimated 5 attempted logins per day, and about half of them are blocked for 28 days… 😮

and, not only that, but two IP addresses — both from baghdad — have been blocked a total of 18 times (one has been blocked 10 times, and one has been blocked 8 times) since i installed the plugin, about 6 months ago.

and, so far, nobody has guessed the correct login name. 😎 although there have been some fairly obvious attempts, and some attempts — like “QhYQFvutnN” and “DouglasSevy” — that make me wonder what is really going on…

NOTICE!

INTERNATIONAL EARTH ROTATION AND REFERENCE SYSTEMS SERVICE (IERS) 

SERVICE INTERNATIONAL DE LA ROTATION TERRESTRE ET DES SYSTEMES DE REFERENCE

SERVICE DE LA ROTATION TERRESTRE DE L'IERS
OBSERVATOIRE DE PARIS                                   
61, Av. de l'Observatoire 75014 PARIS (France)
Tel.      : 33 (0) 1 40 51 22 26
FAX       : 33 (0) 1 40 51 22 91
e-mail    : [email protected]
http://hpiers.obspm.fr/eop-pc

                    Paris, 5 January 2015
                                                           
                    Bulletin C 49
                                
 To authorities responsible for the measurement and distribution of time

                     UTC TIME STEP
                 on the 1st of July 2015
                      

 A positive leap second will be introduced at the end of June 2015.
 The sequence of dates of the UTC second markers will be:		
		
            2015 June 30,     23h 59m 59s
            2015 June 30,     23h 59m 60s
            2015 July  1,      0h  0m  0s
              
 The difference between UTC and the International Atomic Time TAI is:

  from 2012 July 1,    0h UTC, to 2015 July 1  0h UTC  : UTC-TAI = - 35s
  from 2015 July 1,    0h UTC, until further notice    : UTC-TAI = - 36s 

 Leap seconds can be introduced in UTC at the end of the months of December or June, depending on the evolution of UT1-TAI. Bulletin C is mailed every six months, either to announce a time step in UTC or to confirm that there will be no time step at the next possible date.

             Daniel Gambis
             Head
             Earth Orientation Center of IERS
             Observatoire de Paris, France

note

the only user other than “admin” that i have blocked since 141208 has been “QhYQFvutnN” which is really bizarre… i wonder what makes… you know, never mind. forget i said anything.

ketchup

for those of you who may be trying to guess my administrator password, good luck… seriously… you can start with not trying to login as “admin” or “przxqgl”, because either one will get you banned for 6 hours (the first time). and it doesn’t matter how many IP addresses you use, you’ll still get banned if you try to login as “admin” or “przxqgl”, so you may as well give it up.

they finally got the check to us on saturday, which is sooner than they told us the last time, but four days later than they originally agreed upon. it’s really bizarre, because the audiences love us and ask us when will be the next time we’re coming back, but if the “MAN”agement doesn’t get it together to pay us on time, there aren’t going to be too many more shows like this.

i’m deep into rehearsal season again. the panto starts on 13th december and the fremont philharmonic is playing for the fremont lenin lighting/festivus celebration on 5th december. we’re rehearsing twice a week for the panto, we still haven’t got all the music, or finalised who is going to play (or not) for which shows, i just created yet another “new” mailing list for the players, and, already macque has had to delete one address and add another one because of some fiasco in which he’s involved.

my mother-in-law (who may be reading this) came to visit last week, so that she could accompany moe to the fleetwood mac concert. i’m not a big fleetwood mac fan, so i drove them to the venue and then went to the Poodle Dog, which i used to frequent when i was a cab driver, in the middle-1980s. as far as i could tell, the only thing that has changed about the poodle dog is the computer screens in place of the cash register, and the wide-screen flat-panel televisions in place of the CRT screens above the bar… even the smell was the same. we arranged to go to a friend’s birthday party with the M-I-L, as well, but, as we were on our way out the door to go to the party, she fell and fractured her wrist in three places, causing her and moe to be in the emergency room until 3:00 in the morning. she was wondering why i seemed to be expressing a desire not to be in contact with her, and this is the reason why. she’s way too fragile to be an ongoing part of our (meaning mine and moe’s) life. she’s always going to be moe’s mom, so i’m always going to get along with her, more or less; really, it’s not as though i don’t get along with her, like i don’t get along with my parents, but i also don’t want her to put herself into situations where she’s going to get broken. we’ve experienced enough broken-ness without her adding to the batch.

cartoons

once again, i’m digging through boxes of stuff that is left over from a time before internet… and i’m coming up with definite reasons why some of things should not be forgotten so quickly.

like this:

880320 Calvin & Hobbes

by the way, it’s remotely possible that you can comment without being automatically spam-filtered… unfortunately, i don’t have any way to test it, so you’re going to have to do so, and report back to me if there are any problems.

hu nose

100 mm diameter quartz crystal

those of you who may be waiting to comment, but can’t, i haven’t forgotten you. unfortunately, the problem is two-fold, and in order to address the first part, i have to be able to back up the blog… but i can’t, because of the server configuration being run by my host, EZPZ… they’re not going to change, and i can’t back up because of the fact that they run something that is incompatible with my being able to back up, and until they fix it, there’s nothing i can do.

it would be time to investigate other hosting possibilities, except they have informed me that they’re going to try to address this problem within the next few weeks, and told me to wait… and considering how many times i have done so in the past, i am not too fond of the idea of packing up and switching hosts, so i’m going to wait and see what happens.

grr…

so, i was notified today, by someone who tried to do it and failed, that their comment was blocked because of “spam” when they tried to submit it. i don’t have anything that deliberately filters out everything as spam, so i tried to comment on my own blog, and, what do you know? i was blocked because my comment appears to be spam…

that would explain why i’ve not gotten any new comments on my blog for some time, but… weird!

i’m not deliberately blocking anybody (except spammers, and they know who they are), but the fact that i’m getting blocked indicates some bug somewhere… which is all the more motivation to back up and reinstall my blog, because too many weird things have been happening to it recently, and i need to fix it.

what was that?

around this time a few years ago, i recall saying that this was “rehearsal season”. it’s definitely rehearsal season, despite the fact that i haven’t mentioned it recently. this was driven home to me last night, when i got home from a BBWP rehearsal (we have a gig coming up in 2 weeks… take THAT, sharon osbourne!) and i realised that i had a BSSB rehearsal last night that i totally missed (because it wasn’t on my schedule 8/ ), and we’ve got a BSSB gig coming up this weekend

had i known that i had two rehearsals scheduled at the same time, i probably would have blown off the BSSB rehearsal anyway, but at least i would have been able to warn them that i wasn’t going to be there.

then, this morning, i logged into spamcop to check my spam, and i had a huge list of spam messages, so i clicked “select all” and hit the “submit” button before i checked the subject lines, and as i was scrolling down through the subjects, i noticed [BSSB] in one of the subjects, which is SUPPOSED to indicate to the spam filter that the message is NOT spam… but because of the fact that i had already clicked the “submit” button, it was too late to change it, and now all of my accounts are suspended…

wump

Thomas and Minnie Hammondi’m feeling marginally better than i was yesterday, and yesterday i was feeling marginally better than i was the day before that, and so forth, for about a week… which, i suppose, means that i’m getting better, slowly… it’s gotten so i don’t actively feel sick, most of the time, but i still have bouts of coughing that are really annoying because of their unpredictability, and i still get exhausted really easily, which sometimes is accompanied by a bout of coughing, which exhausts me even more.

the dignified-looking people to the right are my great grandparents, Thomas W. and Minnie L. Hammond. i don’t know when the picture was taken exactly, but my guess is that it was some time between minnie’s marriage, in 1906 (she was 16 when she got married) and her death in 1946… and judging by how old she looks, i would guess about 1915 to 1925-ish. but, because of the fact that they were relatives of mine, i can pretty much assure anyone who doesn’t know, that they were very likely not anywhere near as dignified as they look. my general impression is that most of my relatives from that era are all but hillbillies from central missouri (pronounced “missourah”). after minnie died, tom hammond got married to another teenager (when he was almost 70), named Melmalee Clapper, and had another child before he died… so i guess i’m carrying on a family tradition by being married to a woman who is 17 years younger than me, as well as carrying on the family tradition of being the oldest child of a family who wants to have nothing to do with me. 😛 fortunately i’ve got a perfectly wonderful surrogate-family, which has taken over the family duties in a way that my family-of-origin never could.

i won’t have to go in for jury duty on monday, because, according to the jury-duty-check-in-phone-line that i was supposed to call friday evening, “there are no trials scheduled for the month of april”… which, considering that i received the message around april 10th or so, i would have thought that they knew that already, but apparently they don’t. oh well, i guess i don’t get to go in and inform all of the other potential jurors about the right of jury nullification, and disqualify us all from the jury pool… 😉

i’ve got a really weird anomaly with my blog: i use a plugin called “Jetpack” that connects my blog to wordpress.org, and gives me stuff like stats for the site, and the ability to short-link to my blog, and stuff like that. there is a number "➊" in a black circle, next to the jetpack link, which, under normal circumstances, means that there is an update to be applied, but i can’t find it anywhere, and there are no other indications that updates are even required, which there usually are if there’s an update that is really supposed to be applied. i can put up with a random "➊" character, but anything outside of what’s normally supposed to happen makes me extremely suspicious.

so, here’s the deal…

i have been getting a little tired of doing a regular “another week closer to the eschaton” post, because it seems as though the news never gets any better, and frequently gets a lot worse, and i’m tired of reading bad news ALL the time… besides that, it doesn’t seem to matter how much i rant about how awful things are, it never seems to do any good.

besides that, i’ve got a couple more weeks of moisture festival performances to deal with, and i’m going to be spending a lot more than my normally alloted quantity of spoons, which means that i will have even less time than i would ordinarily, because i will be recovering.

so, the upshot is that i’m going to suspend the regular weekly rant about how awful the world is for a while… two weeks at the minimum…

discuss, if you want to. in the mean time, i’ll be posting here as usual… 8)

grmph…

i rarely NEVER have problems with them, so when i do, it’s an emergency…

there have been some “issues” at spamcop.net, the origin of my regular email address. i’m not exactly sure what’s going on, because i don’t check their web site for months at a time, but apparently the email servers, and particularly their webmail servers had some sort of catastrophe that has meant that they had to restore from an old backup, or something like that. what that means, in my case, is that email that is addressed to my regular email address – salamandir at spamcop dot net – may or may not be received by me, at least until saturday and maybe longer or, alternately, it may not be received by me at all

there also appears to be a similar problem with my “business” email address – ganesha at hybridelephant dot com – as well, because that mail is also filtered by spamcop.

i don’t know whether or not recent mail for either address will be received at all. i tried sending a test message from one of my yahoo.com accounts to spamcop.net and it hasn’t arrived. other people have told me that when they try to send email to my spamcop.net address, it has bounced with a notice that my previous ISP no longer handles email for that address (which leads me to believe that it’s on spamcop’s end, because the mailhosts on my end are set up correctly)…

i am getting some email, but for the past two or three days, i have been getting significantly fewer messages than i am used to, which also makes me think that it’s something on spamcop’s end of things…

meanwhile, you can try to send me email at “me at salamandir dot info” or “rev underscore deluxe at yahoo dot com” – although i don’t check yahoo as often, and i’ve never actually received any email at salamandir dot info (because i just created the email address today)…

really meta…

i’ve been poking around behind the scenes again, because, recently, i’ve been getting a whole slew of spam comments on various media pages. i didn’t even know that each media file that was part of a post had its own, separate page until fairly recently, probably because i use flickr and don’t link too many media files from my own server, and when i do, i don’t put in the “link to the file” option that i am offered most of the time. apparently that doesn’t matter to the spam-bots that are out there, and they’ll link to, and comment on any page that looks like it may have comment form stuff on it…

anyway, i added the disable comments plugin, which made me look at my caching plugin and discover that it is HOPELESSLY out of date (when things work, i have a tendency not to mess with them, unless absolutely necessary), so i installed a new caching plugin, which required me to change my permalink method…

the end result is that, now, instead of linking to “?p=6651” (a rather ambiguous name that doesn’t really mean anything except to a computer), you can now link to “/2011/10/24/whatever…” which is an actual date, plus the title of the post: a much more “enlightened” way to do things, that makes the blog a lot more “human friendly”… and it makes it so that search engines could actually index my pages… if i would let them (which i won’t).

and, despite all of my griping about them, i am, actually a human being, after all, and even i have trouble remembering whether the information i wanted is in post 1864 or 1684…

today

this morning i was in a rush to get things done, and i realised that i hadn’t made this month’s backup of the web site, so i started that before i fed the critters or myself… and well before my weekly post was scheduled. i then realised something, and logged in to discover that it already was that way, but somehow, in the process, i’m fairly sure that i was logging in to exactly the same place that was being compressed for the backup, because it suddenly became REALLY slow and timed out a couple of times, and when i finally got the page to reload, it was blank… and it was about three minutes before it was scheduled to post…

i don’t know if anybody else was watching, but at 9:00 this morning, i posted a completely blank “another week closer to the eschaton” which then vanished after about five minutes (i made it private) and then, after i had taken care of a bunch of other, more physical things, about an hour later, i went back to yesterday’s saved version of the post (HOORAY for databases!) and restored that.

it feels really strange to say “hooray for databases” because i still only have a vague notion of what they are, despite the fact that my most recent “technical” employment involved installing and populating a wide variety of databases… it was kind of strange then, too, because i could tell you what the databases contained and how it related to the software i was testing, i still couldn’t really express, in words, what the database actually was… i get the impression that it’s sort of like a spreadsheet, but beyond that it gets really vague, really quickly… one way or the other, i was able to go into the database and restore today’s post.

that’s all. i’ll see you next week.

weird

my awesome web stats informed me that normally my bandwidth consumption is around 28MB per day, but on 16 may, 2011, i had 104.29MB of transfer, most of which were music files… in the past, i have posted links to Tenor Leak Fellatio, Cat Stretching, Wraith Ugly, DJ RX – White Lines and a bunch of other mp3 files, which were downloaded anywhere between 40 and 90 times, by people in the united states and china primarily…

of course, that was also the day when my friend Bunger Mulkin! downloaded the 75MB zip file i posted for him, as well… that may well have been part of it…

also the post from 080118 of my blog was visited by someone from pakistan at approximately 9:00 am this morning… weird…