Before the Week in Review, a pause for this memorandum:
Re: The Cold I Developed This Week
You appear not to have noticed that I have already had my seasonal cold. Please correct this situation immediately. Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter.
I did my first electronic court filing this week, which was strangely exciting. However, I haven't yet got my head around the idea that this is now the default for federal court—probably because almost all of my federal cases are pro se prisoner lawsuits, and they still have to get paper copies of things. Hopefully this idea will become accepted over time in my head, and not require a major disaster to really sink in.
In case you've been living in a cave—well, it's probably pretty cold there too. Cold has certainly been the defining characteristic of this week. A few weeks ago, I told Chad that I wanted an inside-outside thermometer. I think I've changed my mind: if I'd known it was -2 F on Friday morning, for instance, I don't think I would have left the house. (Yes, I know it's cold other places too. Feel free to tell me about it, so I can mark them down as places not to move to.) We had a very intense snow squall on Tuesday that went from "oh, look, snow flurries," to "oh, look, I can't see a foot out of my window," to "oh, look, the sun" in about ten minutes total. Sometime last year there was a 100+ car pile-up in Massachusetts; at the time I saw the headlines and thought that people had to be careless to result in that many rear-endings. Having seen how quickly the visibility dropped on Tuesday, I am sorry that I doubted it.
The dog's been having a mixed reaction to winter. On one hand, she loves to romp in the snow, and she particularly enjoys playing one-dog soccer in the light dry snow. (Which is, all together now, indescribably cute.) And the snow probably drove out the mouse/mole/thing that she caught on Tuesday morning, much to my distress and her amusement. She treated it the same way she treats her toys: pick it up with her mouth, flip it in the air, pounce on it, repeat—except that her toys don't usually wriggle desperately of their own volition. I'm not sure whether that means that she saw the rodent as a toy, or that she sees her toys as prey. Anyway, I thought it got away when I managed to get her inside, but Chad found it later in the week, frozen solid, alas. At least she didn't eat it.
On the other hand, slushy snow/road gunk/ice is really hard on her paws (as Chad described on his blog), to the point where I actually bought her booties. We haven't tried them on a walk yet, though, because the roads got dry right after that. Her walk schedule has been seriously reduced because of the cold, though, and she's adapted surprisingly well to that.
Chad's parents and sister came up for dinner Wednesday night, before she headed back to the West Coast. It was lovely to see them and have dinner at the new, spacious, airy location of Cornell's, an excellent local Italian restaurant. (I will be forever fond of it because of our first dinner there, in the summer of 2002; I was studying for the bar, we had no air conditioning, and one night it was all too much and we went on a desperate mid-week search for coolth. We found excellent food and blessed air conditioning and managed to retain our sanity for another week.) Continuing the Italian theme, I made homemade pizza again yesterday. I was pleased to discover that I had screwed it up last time (by running the food processor too long), and when done properly, the dough is actually not so sticky as to be unmanageable. We'll have to do that more often, and maybe even get a pizza stone. Then I watched football.
You know, I was surprised to hear that many Boston-area fans were apparently insufferably smug over the Pats' chances in the post-season (per this article in Slate). As I've said, it never crossed my mind to assume that the Patriots would win: that's just asking for trouble, especially with some of the ugly, ugly wins that made up the 14-2 record. And I think yesterday's game, viewed objectively, bore that attitude out. Yes, they won, but it was not a pretty game and some of the key turning points can't fairly be credited to the Patriots, being just plain Tennessee self-destruction—I mean, something like three delay of game penalties?
I was impressed to see Tom Brady run for two first downs—he's really not known for speed—and throw a nice block for another, and it's always good to see Adam Vinatieri make the clutch field goal (the Boston Globe today reports that he's been having back problems for weeks, possibly accounting for his recent uncharacteristic inconsistency). But it was hardly a dominating performance, and damn do the Colts look good. Five minutes after they finished cutting through Kansas City's defense like a hot knife through butter, my father-in-law called: "So, have you got on the phone yet to Bill Belichick with your plan for defending against Indianapolis?" "Yeah, I think it's 'break both of Peyton Manning's arms.'" I mean, the Chiefs aren't any great shakes on the defensive end, but I hadn't understood that they were so bad that they would just let the Colts have their way with them. Next Sunday is going to be very interesting. .
Some links and pimping:
- According to the Law School Purity Test, it is questionable whether I actually was ever a law student. Fine by me.
- Doris Egan wrote the good Ivory books under her own name, and the great City of Diamond under the name Jane Emerson (reviews at the author's page, because my booklog entry on it is nearly content-free). Thanks to schulman, I discovered that she is, or briefly was, on LJ as tightropegirl. There's much of interest there about writing for TV, apparently her current means of earning a living, but there are two posts on writing that might be of particular interest to readers of this LJ: one on excitement and enthusiasm for writing fanfic and original fiction, and one on what it means to file off serial numbers.
- These have been making the rounds again, so: posters to the Straight Dope Message Board on The Lord of the Rings as written by other authors, and the Making Light discussion thereof.
- The Wheel of Time FAQ has been updated for Crossroads of Twilight. (I asked Chad to spoil me thoroughly for that book and decided I didn't need to read it—but I will read the updated bits of the FAQ for additional details, in case I decide to read further books in the series.)
- Finally, the first round of 2003 Koufax Award Nominees are up. Chad's blog, Uncertain Principles, is up for "Most Deserving of Wider Recognition" (and he has new content up on the space program). And Teresa Nielsen Hayden's blog, Making Light (watch makinglight for updates, but you really want to read the comment threads, as demonstrated by the above link), is up for "Best Writing." Go read and, if you like, go vote.