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[personal profile] ximen
(If anyone cares)

School!
My general exams/quals are this April, so I am finalizing my major and minor field reading lists. My fields are going to be: Qing history, Anglo-American legal history, and Early Chinese literature. Hopefully these will meld together and turn me into someone who can confidently fake her way through China studies and legal history talks.

Also, I'm learning Manchu. Which is just awesome.

Matriarchy!
I'm the historical consultant for Ben's game (which has awesome Sushu-art, btw). We just started alpha-testing, which is fun in the "poke things until they break" sense but not yet in the "play this game" sense. Fortunately I like poking things. It's in Kickstarter-mode right now, so if you have spare money and you like social games, Chinese history, or awesome Sushu-art, you should give us money. Or you can just watch the video to see the awesome Sushu art and to hear Sushu and me ramble about why we're working on the project. Which I find impossible to listen to, because it's weird hearing my own voice recorded. But I guess that's true for almost everyone.

Projects!
I was learning to play the erhu, but I stopped practicing when I left Taiwan and have had trouble getting back into it. It's hard to find time to practice, and when I do, I get so stressed out that I might be doing things wrong that it's hard to continue. Does anyone else who has tried to learn musical instruments as an adult (without much prior musical experience) have any advice on how to overcome those problems?

I've returned to working on my companion cube plush. I have three sides completed (all save the little gray tabs between each corner piece). The other three sides have their gray circles, their hearts, and their pink lines, but lack the gray corners. Once I have the corners sewn on all six sides, I will sew the sides together so that I have one large flat piece, then sew on the little gray tabs, then sew the remaining sides together into a cube. Oh, and stuff it. the cube itself isn't going to be that big... maybe six inches on each side. And it's going to be slightly lopsided and asymmetrical, because it was mostly hand-sewn and because I'm not that good at sewing. But it will have been made with love! And now that I have a better understanding of what each part requires, and also a sewing machine, I'm thinking of making a full-sized one, for use as furniture.

Stuff!
I've been watching The Wire with my friend Bing. It's pretty awesome.

I've been playing the online game Glitch. It's basically Harvest Moon the MMO, and I find it scarily addictive.

I'm living in Newark. I have a two-room studio all to myself (well, me and the cat) and I love it. Come visit! I have a spare futon!

I was in Atlanta for five days. I got to see [identity profile] bakeneko.livejournal.com and catch up. That was pretty great-- I got to reconnect with an old friend, and it turns out that we still had things to talk about (possibly more now, actually), and also I was happy to see that she's doing well and making really cool masks. And that was she was nice enough to spend over an hour just answering all my random questions about her artistic and business process. Thank you for indulging my curiosity, Jyn!

I've started posting everything on Dreamwidth and cross-posting to LJ. But Dreamwidth doesn't yet have good mood icons, so that's annoying. Also it seems like everyone else has switched to tumblr, Google+, Facebook, or Twitter. I do check G+ regularly, but even though I have accounts for the other three, I can't seem to adapt. Facebook is too crowded, I hate twitter's new interface, and tumblr just has problems. It doesn't really handle comments well, and when people respond to each others' posts, you end up with the same post being repeated three or four times on one page, often just with one or two lines added at the end. And since you read the newest ones first, what you see is the entire conversation, followed by the conversation minus the last few lines, followed by the conversation minus the last two exchanges, and so on. On the other hand, there is a lot of cool art, so maybe I'll just start using tumblr to look at pictures of hungover owls and funny cats. But I'm sad that most of my friends no longer post page-long rants and updates on their lives to LJ. How am I supposed to know how you're doing? I'm scared of the phone and not very good at IM. Oh well. All things come to an end.

I should really get off the computer and tackle my to-do list. It is long. And it's 3 PM and I'm still in pajamas. But it's so hard to so do anything on a rainy day... *whine whine*

Anyway, that's me. How are you?
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西門樂

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