Blogs

Oystercatchers

I've been so lucky to see oystercatchers lately.

They're some of my favorite birds. They're about the size of a seagull, with black bodies, Silly Putty colored feet, and bright red tube-shaped beaks.

They can be incredibly difficult to see against the dark rocks where they feed. Fortunately, they often cry out just before they take flight. By following the sound, I can often spot them just before they leave their current rock for a different one.

Full of Goodwill

I spent $26 at Goodwill this afternoon, and I feel great.

I love shopping at Goodwill. It makes me feel lucky, and smart, and frugal.

I passed Goodwill as I was walking home from the library. I'd been thinking about getting some new (well, new to me) jeans and a sweatshirt or two if I could find one, so I thought I'd go in to see what they had.

What they had was a sale. Every single piece of clothing in the store was just $2.

Living in a Library

I love cheap books. I go to thrift stores and library book sales and come home with boxes full of books I have no room for. Half my books (honestly, well over half my books) are in storage, waiting for me to bring them back home where I can read them.

And yet, I'm surrounded by books.

I daydream about reading all these wonderful books. I take small paperbacks to the bus stop with me - Teach Yourself French, A Brief History of Japan, The Portable Greek Historians.

Alisa Weilerstein at Herbst Theatre

I had the great pleasure of seeing and hearing Alisa Weilerstein and Inon Barnatan perform at Herbst Theatre on Thursday night.

The Blogging Gap

I am dismayed (I wrote "abashed," then looked it up, and decided that was wrong) that I have gone more than three months without blogging.

I have a half-written post about the Big Book Sale, the San Francisco Public Library's annual event, a personal holiday for me, where I spent a happy afternoon wandering among tables filled with books, piling dozens of them onto my cart and smiling, looking forward to reading them all. One of these days I'll clean that up and post it.

Studying French with Project Gutenberg

My current approach to studying French is to make my way through some popular literature, picking up vocabulary words along the way.

I've found a number of Jules Verne works at Project Gutenberg, many available in both French and English. (I've seen several posts on one of the learning language forums reporting good results from reading a book in English and then in the original language. So far, I'm starting with the French, but I may change my mind.)

I decided to start with Around the World in 80 Days.

Drupal Tips - The Admin Menu Module

The Admin Menu module is one of the first contributed modules I install whenever I set up a Drupal site. I don't know how I ever lived without it.

It adds a simple, small (but complete!) set of menus to the top of each page in your site - visible only to administrators (or whichever roles you've given permission). It makes it incredibly easy to add new content, check your logs, and update module settings.

Unlike some menu modules, it's very responsive - downright zippy, in fact.

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