“If you do not like it here because some humorists you don’t like are making a newspaper, may I then say you can fuck off.”

— Ahmed Aboutaleb, Mayor of Rotterdam

Japan closing for March…


The government has ordered all schools to close until April. Graduation ceremonies and many public festivals have been canceled. The Studio Ghibli Museum has shut down until March 17th, hoping it will be safe to re-open by then. The US State Department has a level 2 advisory on travel to Japan, instructing travellers to “exercise increased caution”.

I keep checking to make sure our flights haven’t been canceled. And I really need to get rid of the last of the usual sinus infection that followed the cold I had at the beginning of February; I don’t think even the slightest cough or sniffle will amuse the Immigration counter at Haneda.

The good news is that we’re unlikely to get stuck in a huge sweaty crowd at Immigration this time. If they’re still letting people in at all by then…

As for what to do once we’re there, crowds are out. I suspect the monthly craft and flea markets will all be canceled. Popular shopping areas like Teramachi and Nishiki will either be ghost towns or very off our list. This may end up being a temple/museum/restaurant trip with carefully-selected shopping.

Random pic dump


Bored and busy, but wanted something more amusing at the top of the page.

SFW but not SFD.

Unrelated thoughts:

  • It sucks to spend three days explaining a simple and obvious regression in an open source project that was created by an unannounced breaking change, only to have the author not just blow you off, but suggest that you file a bug on a completely different broken feature that he thinks you should be using instead. Seriously, this is a Jobsian “you’re holding your phone wrong” level of fucked up.

  • Corona-chan is harshing Japan’s mellow, leaving me wondering what things will be like when my sister and I get there. There’s also a Rubella-chan tour in the Kanto region.

  • I caught them all. For amusement, I then played all the way through the game in Japanese. Then, annoyed by the flood of inane shiny/trade posts in the subreddit (and all the docs about how to exclude particular flairs on Reddit are wrong), I decided to see just how hard it would be to play through far enough to catch your own goddamn foreign Dittos. So I’ve now caught a 4IV free-range organic Korean Ditto, and I don’t speak a word of the language. Honestly, the hardest part was typing in a name for my character (I picked 수영, because I could figure out how to type it in the IME).

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Dear ‘CAEZIK SF & Fantasy’…


I invite you to speculate on precisely where I think you should shove your ebook pricing model for the upcoming posthumous Heinlein novel:

I was planning to buy it, but now I dislike you and want your company to fail.

Meanwhile, in Central Californistan…


Some poor soul, apparently a young polisci major, decided to use Nextdoor’s poll feature to ask about the upcoming election:

I suspect that if Trump weren’t winning, there wouldn’t be so many complaints in the comments about it “violating Nextdoor policies”…

Sunday update

Now 44% Trump, 35% Sanders, 4% each Warren/Biden/Buttigieg/Bloomberg, and 1% Klobuchar. Totally unscientific with a small, unrepresentative sample, so it’s at least as accurate as a professional phone poll…

Build-A-Bare episode 6


Episode 6 of Interspecies Reviewers contains three very important pieces of advice:

  1. Always include a crafter in your party.
  2. Never confess your sins.
  3. Carry sunglasses.

And if Our Heroes stop to think about it, they really, really need to go back there and pay whatever it costs to have the evidence dismantled.

Unrelated, I’m back from Sedona. I might post a few pictures, but I still haven’t done anything with the ones I took last year in Japan, and the next trip’s coming up fast. It sounds like tourist traffic is way down right now, so as long as I don’t cough while going through Immigration, we should have a great time.

Celebrating Democratcy…


Here’s an advanced 3D rendering of the current state of the Democrat nomination process:

Apply memes as desired.

Dear Amazon,


Wait, Amazon Prime Video was also streaming Interspecies Reviewers?!? And didn’t pull it until today?

Seriously, there is nothing subtle about the premise of this show, and even an extremely tame adaptation would have aroused… “controversy”. Anyone paying even the faintest attention to the pre-release marketing in Japan knew what was, um, coming.

Unrelated, here are my latest amusing Amazon recommendations:

Creeping featurism, Jira plugin edition…


So there’s a third-party plugin for Jira called “Git Integration for Jira”, whose description claims that all it does is query your Gitlab server and display links to the commits that reference the current Jira issue.

Nowhere does it mention that it also defaults to sending warning emails to addresses mentioned in the commits, even if they don’t map to any of your Jira users.

Like, say, the Freeswitch mailing list.

The initial helpdesk ticket wasn’t terribly useful in figuring this out, since it consisted of a screenshot of someone’s inbox that didn’t include their email address or even a full subject line, much less something useful like, say, complete email headers. It took three rounds with one of our local devs to elicit the keywords “git integration plugin”, “project key FS”, and “smart commits”.

That last bit is what let me know I was looking at the correct configuration screen, since it’s right above the feature to randomly send email to addresses scraped from the git commit.

“Need a clue, take a clue,
 got a clue, leave a clue”