jc blog - tales of a modern-day nomadic hunter-gatherer

Follow jcomeau_ictx on Twitter This is the weblog of Intrepid Wanderer. You never know what you might find here; graphic descriptions of bodily functions, computer programming secrets, proselytizing for the antichrist, miscellaneous ranting and kvetching, valuable information on living off the land... if you don't share my rather weird interests you may want to try slashdot instead.

You can consider my Del.icio.us links an extension to my blog, as are my LifeTango goals and my other to-do items. My to-buy list is also public, but only for sharing any useful ideas that might be there; I'm not requesting charity, neither do I offer it.

You can find me easily in google searches, as jcomeau, jcomeau_ictx, or jcomeauictx. There are lots of other jcomeaus, but AFAIK I'm the only jcomeau_ictx out there so far.

If you want to comment on anything you see here, try the new Facebook comments, reachable by clicking the "[comment]" link at the end of each post. If for some reason that isn't working, go ahead and email me, jc.unternet.net. You know what to do with the first dot. Make the 'subject' line something reasonably intelligent-looking or it goes plunk! into the spambasket unread.

This RSS feed may or may not work. Haven't fiddled with it in forever. RSS Feed


before I forget: my observations from this year's race.

still obviously didn't have a working idea for a vehicle, but at least it was the easiest-rolling contraption I've come up with so far. the ability to steer using the cane would have been a great improvement. also, an extra inch tire radius would have helped me on the rougher roads.

got what seems like a major chemical burn from the baking soda under my left arm on day 2. it was all bright red and seeping lymph.

pain from the foot was, as predicted, worse on day 3, but still the major pain right now is muscular. other problems may well show up over the next week or so.

wore holes in my inflatable PFD, drybag, and wetsuit due to abrasion. got to find a way to keep that from happening. expensive mistakes.

driving back on Monday meant an hour slowdown through Willits. the bypass is supposed to be finished late this year, but I remain skeptical. [comment]


so it had nothing to do with the butter. this Peruvian coffee just grinds differently from the beans I usually use. [comment]


I don't know if it's the new roast I'm grinding, a Peruvian coffee from Grocery Outlet, or the butter I added for "bulletproof" coffee this morning. but the grounds settled out like mud at the bottom of the cup, so I could drink almost to the last drop without getting them in my mouth, as usually happens with camp coffee. this is something of a major breakthrough! [comment]


I got a mention over at War On Guns, one of the top blogs you should be following if you care about the RKBA. [comment]


confirmed that the Android tablet works fine through a Platypus bag. perhaps that would make a better waterproof enclosure than anything else on the market including products made espressly for the purpose. guess it's back to REI soon. I can't risk losing my electronics on the race. I've had too many close calls already.

also trying to load an "air horn" app onto the damned thing without having to set up an account, which rules out Google Play Store. [comment]


resting my foot, and almost finished my latest Upwork job. this one has dragged on for weeks, especially after having to switch to Javascript for the client-side code. going from Python to JS is always a hassle.

found probably 60 pounds or more of packaged ham in my favorite grocery store dumpster, along with a package of organic eggs of which 15 were still usable, and a package of sausages. so I'm set for protein for a while. I couldn't carry it all, of course, but I got about 20 pounds of the ham plus the sausages and eggs.

after that long walk through Santa Rosa I was starving. I made a 6-egg ham and cheese omelet and ate it all for supper. [comment]


so it seems my body doesn't heal as fast as I'd hoped. on my long walk/jog back from Santa Rosa yesterday I felt my left ankle strain again, just on a stone half the diameter of a golf ball. I'd better stay off it until race day. [comment]


the more I use the debugging console in Chrome, the more I'm sure that its use modifies the way the pages work. for example, after right-clicking the page and selecting Inspect, javascript that worked fine suddenly stops working. re-loading the page without the console, and trying it again, works just fine. [comment]


nightmarish experience with Gmail. attempted to use it through my new LG phone's browser, Google thought it was "suspicious" and locked my account until I changed my password, so I had no choice but to do so. then my tablet was in a catch-22: the account couldn't be logged in, which made android.process.media stop, and apparently without that process, connection to a wireless AP is disabled. so you have to log in with the new credentials, but you have no Internet connection with which to do so. nice design, huh?

so anyway, the forum post linked above is for different versions of Android than the Cyanogen 10 that I'm running, and none of them worked until I got way down on the page: under Settings, Accounts, Google, I selected my email address, and then after hitting the leftmost button at the bottom front of the tablet, the one with 3 stacked horizontal lines, I got an option to delete the account.

then I could connect again. I may still have problems to solve, and so may need to add the account back. but at least I have the core function back. [comment]


had to prematurely terminate the poison oak experiment. the urushiol broke out of containment and I have patches of rash on my torso. I removed the tape and, with cold water, washed the affected area. next time -- if there is a next time -- I'll shave the area of my arm first, and use duct tape or other reliable adhesive to keep the leaf in one place on my arm with the least chance of it escaping. [comment]


from Daniel Truong at the Plant Identification forum: that northern California bush with the orange/yellow flowers and 3-lobed leaves is Fremontodendron californicum, Flannel Bush. [comment]


that experiment with poison oak started itching on and off since yesterday evening. right now it's driving me nuts. [comment]


Andrian Tu on Facebook's Plant Identification forum found the bright orange flower I see each year along the road in Payne's Creek: Erysimum capitatum. [comment]


one trick for conferring immunity to urushiol that I read on some forum some time ago was to tape a poison oak leaf to one's inner arm and leave it there for a few days. just began it a few minutes ago. [comment]


programming problem was kicking my ass. I'm writing a proxy of sorts, that rewrites a webpage before showing to the visitor. first I messed up on the image URLs, I was sloppily using print statements, forgetting that the extra whitespace corrupted the images. then after fixing that, the resource files, such as javascript and CSS, were not being loaded into the page despite my forwarding the requests and printing them with the correct Content-type header to the user's browser. the problem? I wasn't sending a Status header, therefore Apache was, through the ErrorHandler mechanism, just tacking on the preexisting 404 status message, and the browser wasn't taking anything that way except for images. simply adding print 'Status: 200 Intercepted\r\n' got it working.

I'll probably end up making this run under uwsgi/nginx, but for the prototype I generally use the tried-and-true, though slow, CGI script framework. but I take these jobs rarely enough that I keep running into these head-scratchers, not remembering how I solved them before. [comment]


check out this ultralight cooking/camping gear, hat tip to Sipsey Street: http://canteenshop.com/cooking.html. [comment]


two more plants on the hillside: Lathyrus latifolius, "perennial sweetpea", toxic when eaten in quantity; and Dichelostemma capitatum, "blue dicks", which have edible tubers (corms), both identified on Facebook's Plant Identification forum. [comment]


I found a willing recipient of my social security funds, on the odd chance that I live long enough to collect. it still remains to be seen whether or not I'm still able to survive on $10 a day when the time comes. [comment]


pondering what I should do about social security. assuming it's still viable in 2 years, which is the earliest I can start collecting, I can get $1256 a month. question is: should I? how can I square collecting this money, being paid in by a generation for whom the system cannot possibly be around when they reach retirement age, with anarchism? but if I don't collect, then the government will find a way to use it to fund their evil wars, attacks on American citizens, crony bailouts, and other crap I don't want them doing. the best plan I can come up with so far is to collect, but turn around and give the money to people and causes I consider worthy. but my interest in self-preservation still wants me to keep some of it for myself. definitely needs more input, and more cogitation. [comment]


got my free tracfone upgrade to an LG from the old Samsung. it even has a primitive browser, whoopie. and its keyboard unlock isn't as braindead as the Samsung's -- which basically took any key combination as a call to 911 -- however, once the "unlock" key is hit, it waits indefinitely, disregarding all other keyhits, for you to hit the "yes" key, which unlocks the phone. still fucking useless. if I lock the keyboard, I want the fucker to stay locked so I don't accidentally call somebody. why is that concept so hard to understand? [comment]


an edible tuber, Tragopogon porrifolius, is showing its pretty magenta flower all over Petaluma right now, but I had to re-ID it on Facebook's Plant Identification forum because I can never remember its Latin name nor its common name "salsify". I keep telling myself to remember it by saying "I can use this to salsify my tacos" but that never works... it just doesn't look appealing as food. [comment]

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