Category Archives: General

Halloween: 2016 – Closing Time on the Call


Happy Halloween, or a joyous celebration to you no matter your holiday of choice!

I knew this day would come, since founding this blog on December 28, 2008, but it’s been an absolute blast.

It really has.

After this entry, the blog will remain online, but closed to further updates. Posts older than one year since this date will be closed for commenting, and this site will continue to serve as an archive.

I’m changing venues to another site for most of my blogging, a site much with much more functionality, one which permits me to sell my work directly, and most of all one which is less burdened by the spectre of time and loss of those passed on whom I’ve come to like, love, and respect.

This blog has seen much history in the nearly eight years it’s existed, and not all of it good. It has seen the deaths of many very close to me, and my work on this site has been deeply affected by these undertones, and the erosion over the months and years of the joy and enthusiasm I began with in late 2008.

I need a change of venue, a place to blog less burdened with the emotional baggage this site carries since the deaths of friends, relatives, online acquaintances scarcely known but profoundly influential, and those of my cats long-gone. It sounds silly and irrational, coming from a non-believer, but it feels almost as if the site has been spiritually tainted by this history.

So, I’m off to a new start, mostly away from WordPress.

Perhaps one day I’ll see a need to return to posting here, at some misty, inchoate time in the future. But I will not promise that. I cannot honestly do so. I simply don’t know what lies ahead.

My new main blogging venue beginning on November 26th of this year will be The Collect Call of Troythulu, with the first few weeks of November being one of preparing and scheduling updates there, as well as study, reading, recharging my cognitive batteries, and relaxation as my new quarterly activity schedule comes into effect on November 1.

I’ll post there each month afterward every other day, with a period of one week or eight days at month’s end to research, rest, read, and review my lessons ready for the following month of updates. I’ll continue posting on WordPress at Checkerboards of the Gods, with an update monthly in keeping with that blog’s topic matter of language use, literature, and writing.

I’ll continue keeping up with those of you on WordPress by commenting on your posts, liking, voting on, and chatting with you on other social media venues you may use. I’d be delighted if you could join me on Blogger or Google+, on Facebook (Here) and (Here), on Twitter, @Troythulu, @Mister_Eccles, or on my Tumblr account at My Horrific Elegance. For those of you with RSS feed readers, my Blogger site has links to updates there, both posts and comments working much like WordPress’s RSS widget. It’s also possible to subscribe there by email.

 

So, in closing this site, I’ll paraphrase from Christopher Eccleston’s Ninth Doctor’s parting line in the final episode of the 2005 season of Doctor Who, “The Parting of the Ways:”

Before this ends, I just want to say one thing. It’s been fantastic, absolutely fantastic! And D’you know what? So have you!

Thank you all for your support, your friendship, and the pleasure of meeting you online these eight years past. I hope I’ve been worthy of it.

Be safe. Be well. Be brilliant as the stars…. Always.

The Collect Call of Troythulu: Caturday’s Astrophenia | 2016.08.27


Welcome to the first installment not retroposted from an earlier date of Caturday’s Astrophenia on this blog. Here are links to the site Astronomy Picture of the Day, plus space science news items from a variety of sites, and often something else as well, so click away, enjoy the content of this fortnightly roundup, and thanks much for visiting this blog as I move ever closer to semi-regular posting here in that middle ground between one day and five each week!

Tf. Tk. Tts.

Source: The Collect Call of Troythulu: Caturday’s Astrophenia | 2016.08.27

What a difference a word can make: How a single word can change your conversation


ideas.ted.com

British psychologist Elizabeth Stokoe studies the patterns in talk that most of us don’t even notice. She explains how her research can be used to train people to interact more effectively.

People spend a good deal of time talking to one another, and in general we do it pretty well. We might feel excited, angry, embarrassed, or — if we’re lucky — loved, in the course of our daily conversations. So is there any benefit to thinking about a science of talk? Can we really gain anything from scientific analysis of something we “just do”?

I believe we can, and I’ve spent the last 20 years studying real talk from real people talking to each other in real time. And while the linguist Noam Chomsky once described conversation as a “disorderly phenomenon,” I can tell you that it’s no such thing. Conversation is highly systematic and organized … and it tells…

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A Weekend at ROFCON… a Weekend Well Spent!


Last week I was busy reading, viewing lectures, and taking care of the house, the boys, and roomies Christopher and the infamous and dreaded Nimbus the cat!

Friday and Caturday were different, evenings occupied gaming and collecting cool things at Ring of Fire Con 2015 while hanging out with friends.

Being the terrible, horrible person I am, I even played a game of Cards against Humanity, though apparently I’m not terrible or horrible enough to have won…Oh, well, maybe next year, and then I can more realistically pass as a Bond villain.

It was good that I didn’t get too overstimulated incoming data-wise to enjoy the event, and with nothing in the way of my…psychology…causing problems for me, or for that matter, anyone else.

Caturday night we played a GURPS Dungeon Fantasy game, our characters getting both some swag from our exploits in the adventure, and more character points to buy cool and awesome traits!

Will I go again next year? Probably, barring anything between now and then that somehow manages to interpose itself in attending.

It’s been almost two decades since my last convention attendance, with perhaps, just hopefully, many more to follow for the gang and I together, we and our geekish pastimes…

Talotaa frang.

The Foundation Beyond Belief — Support the Crisis Response


Hey, guys. The Foundation Beyond Belief is a secular charity now involved in disaster relief work in the aftermath of the Oklahoma Tornado. Please visit their site and donate to assist in their efforts at locating and in helping the recovery of survivors in the wake of this horrid tragedy.

“At 3:01 pm CT on May 20, a massive F-4 tornado decimated the Oklahoma City suburb of Moore, OK. Scores of severe injuries and deaths have been reported, and intense work is under way to find and rescue those trapped in the rubble.

The Humanist Crisis Response program of Foundation Beyond Belief has opened a donation drive in response to this disaster. Our staff worked through the night to assess the disaster situation and the relief organizations responding. This morning we have selected Operation USA and the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma to receive our donations. These organizations were chosen for their long records of outstanding work, their high ratings and transparency, and their current direct work in the disaster zone addressing the primary needs of food, shelter, and medical aid.

Donations will be forwarded continuously during the emergency period. FBB retains no portion of donations. All donations to and through Foundation Beyond Belief are tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law.

The staff and board of Foundation Beyond Belief would like to express our deep condolences to the victims of this terrible tragedy and their families and to encourage humanists in this country and around the world to do anything they can to help them put their homes, businesses, and lives back together.”