tablesaw: A twenty-sided die glows with the power of the Great Old Ones. (Cthulhu Icosahedron)
As the players both stand foot to foot, face to face,
One should aim to go east while the other goes west,
Though they're out of the game if they step out of place.

Player one starts a volley by making the case
Why the other one budging would really be best,
As the players both stand foot to foot, face to face.

The opponent can then, if they choose to, embrace
This persuasive protreptic profoundly expressed,
Though they're out of the game if they step out of place.

So instead, they must fully expound the disgrace
That would fall upon them should they meet that request,
As the players both stand foot to foot, face to face.

Player two then returns a demand for the space
To move forward. The foe may choose not to protest,
Though they're out of the game if they step out of place.

Then repeat and repeat in a motionless chase
Where the mulish participants grow more obsessed1
As the players both stand foot to foot, face to face,
Though they're out of the game if they step out of place.
1For a more somber game, replace "obsessed" with "depressed."

Probably Much-Needed Context )
tablesaw: -- (Real1)
Made some posts today on Google+, in that they are contained in an about the service.

If you haven't been keeping track of Google Plus's rampant suspension of profiles that don't conform to mainstream Western standards, there are some good comprehensive links to check out. Google+ user Sai, whose account has been suspended multiple times because of his (legally documented) single name, posted a massive, collaboratively written account of the whole situation, including suggested policy changes.

In sharing it, I added:
"You're one of the very first people to use Gmail. Your input will help determine how it evolves, so we encourage you to send your feedback, suggestions and questions to us. But mostly, we hope you'll enjoy experimenting with Google's approach to email."

That's what Google e-mailed to me on June 11, 2004. The name on my account then was "Tablesaw Tablesawsen." It remained the name on my Gmail Account when my Gmail Account became a Google Account, and it was the name on my Google Account when my Google Account added a Google Profile. And when that Google Profile became a part of Google Plus (yes I activated it slightly in advance), Tablesaw Tablesawsen it remained.

Every e-mail since then--whether to friends, family, or businesses--has started with a "To" field of "Tablesaw Tablesawsen" and ended with the even more memorable .sig of "Tablesaw (It's the saw of the table!)." It's been the name on my Google Documents and my Picasa pictures.

Notwithstanding the fact that I'd been using the name Tablesaw since about the time that I started hearing about this "Google" thing that was so much better than AltaVista, these seven years of using this Google Account almost exclusively is what establishes it as a real name (one of a few, but no less real). Google should know that Tablesaw Tablesawsen is a real name since they've been sending mail to, and harvesting information from, this name for over seven years.

+Sai and others have written a detailed summary of this issue within Google Plus, including several links and policy suggestions. Per +Sai's request, this share is also being linked to +Natalie Villalobos, whom I'll be counting on to remember this testimonial, should my profile be friviolously suspended.
The other posts come from [personal profile] skud, a longstanding advocate for the benefits of pseudonymity, whose profile was suspended on Friday. (A second post with further notes was posted today.) In the comments to the first, Aahz said, "For anyone who knows Leslie Fish, just think 'Banned From Google' (sorry, haven't gotten any farther)..."

Well, I couldn't help myself:
When we signed up for Google Plus, the network of our dreams,
We all set out investigating circles, sparks, and streams.
We had high expectations for our pseudonymity,
But found too late it wasn't geared for users such as we.

And we're banned from Google; it's not just.
Banned from Google, you could say that we're nonplussed.
We'd love to give more feedback on a field test we adore,
But Google doesn’t want us any more

The ToS is simple, but the policy opaque
Behind how mods consider some names real and some names fake.
The Name Police keep coming for +aestetix, +Sai, and +Skud.
So please, folks, make some changes before Google’s name is Mud.

Since we're banned from Google, all of us.
Banned from Google, and we're kicking up a fuss.
We used to be evangelizers; now we're pretty sore.
We don't know if we'll Google any more.
tablesaw: Jennifer Connolly and David Bowie from <cite>Labyrinth</cite> (Labyrinth)
[livejournal.com profile] ithiliana suggests that the "unified fabric of human desire" must be some sort of plaid. Which got me thinking about kilts. Which led me to writing this:
I just wrote up a short abstract.
(It's weak but it scored a book contract.)
But the bloggers told me what I lacked:
"Ogi, where's your trousers?"

Let the wind blow high, let the wind blow low,
The better for my arse to show.
Fen cry, "Oh, John Ringo, no!
Ogi, where's your trousers!?"

I posted a web survey,
But I took it down right away.
Now I'm afeard of all El Jay
Because I nay have on trousers.

I went down to a comm with kink
To have some fun seeing what they think.
All the ficcers gave me eyes that stink,
Saying, "Ogi, where's your trousers!?"

The backlash hasn't been dismissed,
But they've no reason to be pissed.
You can't put ethics on a scientist,
Saying, "Ogi, where's your trousers!?"
Context

Fair Night.

Feb. 6th, 2004 11:09 am
tablesaw: -- (Default)
Recently, a member of the [livejournal.com profile] npl passed away. Her hame was Mary Youngquist Hazard, but she was known to the Krewe as Nightowl.

A few weeks ago, she sent a note with a self-addressed postcard asking me about a recent puzzle I had authored. I thought it was a cool thing to do, but with the crazyness of the past two months, I forgot to respond. It's a bit late now.

This poem was written by her, and it appears in a few places on the web. It's a good poem with a remarkable restraint. Godspeed, Nightowl.

Winter Reigns

Shimmering, gleaming, glistening glow--
Winter reigns, splendiferous snow!
Won't this sight, this stainless scene,
Endlessly yield days supreme?

Eying ground, deep piled, delights
Skiers scaling garish heights.
Still like eagles soaring, glide
Eager racers; show-offs slide.

Ecstatic children, noses scarved--
Dancing gnomes, seem magic carved--
Doing graceful leaps. Snowballs,
Swishing globules, sail low walls.

Surely year-end's special lure
Eases sorrow we endure,
Every year renews shared dream,
Memories sweet, that timeless stream.

— Mary Youngquist

FriNYTX: 17:30.
tablesaw: -- (Default)
Definitely not 'loot.' )

I may have missed some stuff, since I'm writing this from work. I'll edit from home if necessary.

SunNYTX: 20:30. SunLATX: 18:30

Idly.

Nov. 18th, 2003 09:44 pm
tablesaw: -- (Default)
I'm glad I didn't even attempt National Novel-Writing Month. I probably couldn't hack National Haiku-Writing Month.
tablesaw: "The Accurate Tablesaw" (Accurate)
Does anyone among my readers know of a good online, multiplayer trivia game? Trivial Pursuit would be excellent, but any good facsimile will do. Unless I find one, [livejournal.com profile] shadesong and I will be reduced to writing things like this until our next in-face meeting:

Wedge of the Pie )

FriNYTX: Don't know, the timer disappeared.
tablesaw: -- (Default)
Where everything changes . . . except the concept.

Moloch, the Canaanite god of fire )

Three bears and a pack of camels. )

The Royal Automobile Club of Victoria )

NaNoWriMo )

More questions when I get home. Keep your answers coming.

ThuNYTX: 7:30.
tablesaw: -- (Default)
So, a post from [livejournal.com profile] swisscheesed led me to a post from [livejournal.com profile] tamnonlinear asking for a new version of the ballad of Tam Lin as a response to Marriage Protection Week (The latest hit from the man who brought you the Month of Prayer to End Abortion.) For some strange reason, I responded, and the result is now available on the front page of Tam-Lin.org. Go. Check it out.

I'm not quite finished with it. I think it needs another verse, but I'm a bit lost on forging it. Anyway, I do like what I've done, and I'm glad it's up there.

Now, I'm going to go make a peanut-butter-and-honey sandwich.
tablesaw: -- (Default)
September's gone already. The crushing heat is over. The forest fires have stopped. My house is a year old. School is very much happening again. There's less and less sunlight to be in. The fog sits in the canyons every morning. And the California flora gets guilty about staying alive while its relatives across the country grow withery.

How did it get so late so soon?
It's night before it's afternoon.
December's here before it's June.
My goodness how the time has flewn.
How did it get so late so soon?
— Dr. Seuss
tablesaw: Sketch of an antique tablesaw (Antigua)
I wrote an extensive song pastiche about the special election, but it's destined for The Enigma and, thus, cannot be reprinted here. Don't worry, I'm sure there will be more. For now, I leave you with this clerihew on the subject of one of the contestants on Who Wants to Be Governor of California? The Debating Game. ([livejournal.com profile] wjukknibs, you know I'll be invading your digitally cabled house for that one.)


A uniformed patrolman
Once arrested Gary Coleman,
And he was convicted in a county court.
His defense came up short.
tablesaw: -- (Default)
Arr!

Puzzle Pirates be keeping me occupied while I be feeling not so swell.

On Sunday, I spent most of the day awake in the hot, hot sun helping my parents move furniture across the valley. My sleep has been a bit off since then, and I was decadently unmoving for the rest of the weekend. I'm still behind with my snoozing, so I'm feeling very tired right now. I wish I hadn't forgotten to put my book in my backpack.

The other day, I wrote a pastiche.

And that's all I can think, right now; more later, maybe.

WedNYTX: 6:30.
tablesaw: Tablesaw (Thin Manual)
Last night, for reasons I no longer quite recall, I was reading through the various filksongs of Kevin Wald. His he's written some rather crazy song-parody verse-puzzles in the NPL, and his filksongs are absolutely amazing. (Of particular note is "Xena: or, The Warrior Princess," which takes as its source Gilbert and Sullivan's "Modern Major General.")

Anyway, I'm all for pastiches and parodies, but I've never really used a real sci-fi subject, preferring instead, current events of various types. So I was wondering what I could do as filk all through today (except for the part of it when I was asleep). On my way home from a night at the 3rd Street Promenade (whole other story), I heard a beat that was very similar to "Papa Was a Rolling Stone" by the Temptations. Suddenly I had my song . . .

Mama Was the Chosen One (by Robin Wood and the Temptations) )

TueNYTX: 4:45.
tablesaw: -- (Default)
I'm feeling alone, not lonely. Asocial, not antisocial. Teetering on the edge of feeling depressed. I don't feel like dealing with people today.

Earlier, I woke up and dragged a chair into my yard to read. The sun was setting and a cool breeze was ablowin' down Sepulveda and through the trees that shade my carriage house. I need to do this more often; only my aversion to wearing pants in the mornings prevents me. The light faded too quickly, though.

Today I feel like basking in the sun with my solitude. When I was younger, I used to tell my parents I was going for a walk, or a bike ride, and be gone. Sometimes I'd bring a book or a notebook, but usually, I'd just go out until I was tired. In the west valley, the hills are filled with orange rock and housing developments and quiet and the yellow orange light of the sun on the edge of America falling behind those same hills to dive in the ocean, foam and gloam. Getting out was a great way of getting out anything inside me that was just too much. After a few hours of wandering through the concrete steppes, I'd be little more than tired, and glad to set my body down in a comfortable chair indoors while the light moved from outside to in. The next day would be new, and I would deal with what it brought.

But today, tonight, the light is already in, and there's nothing outside but darkness all around, which pushes things inside instead of drawing them out.

I don't feel like talking. I don't feel like walking. I don't feel like dealing with you. I don't feel like reading or bleeding or heeding advice, I don't care if it's true. So hold off your questions and feel-good suggestions. There's nothing that, now, seems appealing. It's not that I'm callous. I don't wish you malice. It's just that I don't feel like feeling.
tablesaw: -- (Default)
I wrote a little ditty in [livejournal.com profile] starkyld's journal. I liked it so much, I thought I'd reprint it here, for the masses.

"Hate my life!" "Windows 5UX0R5!"
All the strife, all the hucksters.
We're reading along,
Although it feels wrong,
Surfing in a journal wonderland.

No more posts from the [livejournal.com profile] bluebird;
Read the hosts from the new [personal profile] bird.
She writing about shoes
And getting the blues
Somewhere in the journal wonderland.

In our weblog, we can post a lyric
Or another quiz you gotta try,
Or show how your masturbation's pyrrhic
Since doing it will make a kitten die!

Later on, we'll hit random,
Stumble on someone's fandom,
Then follow along
Der sturm und der drang,
Surfing in a journal wonderland!
tablesaw: -- (Default)
Haven't gotten back to doing even these. Sigh.

Anyway, I've already posted two flats, a Deletion and a Padlock. The next example is a Letter Bank. First, a word or phrase is chosen in which each letter is used only once, like "kitchen". This is the "bank." Then, a longer word or phrase is made by using each letter in the bank as many times as necessary (although each letter must be used at least once). From "kitchen," one could form "thick neck" or "kick in the teeth", but "necktie" wouldn't work (since the "H" isn't used).

Here's an brief example from the February 2002 Enigma. The bank is the two-word phrase represented by "KITCHEN"; "KICK IN THE TEETH" is the longer fifteen-letter word:

LETTER BANK (6 3, 15)
The Pope should excommunicate all tyrants
And set them as examples to aspirants
Who think that absolute regimes are bitchin';
Then all will know KICK IN THE TEETH's a KITCHEN.
=TABLESAW, West Hills CA
tablesaw: -- (Default)


I, as a clerihew,
Tend to be merry; too
Merry, it might, perhaps, by some, be claimed;
But I'm sure that these people are wrong, and need to be grievously maimed.
What Poetry Form Are You?

I ought to finish my clerihews before the end of the year. Perhaps.

Flat #2.

Dec. 6th, 2002 04:59 am
tablesaw: -- (Default)
Yesterday, I introduced flats in general, so if you're confused, read up on it. I'll add some more notes after this one.

This is a more complicated type of flat, but it's important to some people who may have been confused by one of the puzzles in Museum Piece. This is a Progressive Padlock, which means that the basewords will overlap in the order given. In the flat below, the cuewords aren't numbers, though, they embody the flat type as well, so I can use them to demonstrate how they will look. The cuewords, in order, are BEHAVE, HAVEN, NATO, ATOLLS, and BELLS. They line up like so:
BEHAVE
  HAVEN
      NATO
       ATOLLS
BE--------LLS

The words they represent follow the same pattern.

This flat also has interesting tagging. Note the "*6". The asterisk means that this is a six-letter Capitalized word. It could be the name of a place, the name of a person, a brand name or something else. Finally, there are some notes about which dictionaries have the word represented by the cueword "BELLS". It's in the Merriam-Webster's 10th Collegiate Dictionary, but only in recent version (though it is in the online version at www.m-w.com). Moreover, the same word is used once in the verse capitalized ("*BELLS"). It's the same word but with a different meaning, and one can only find the capitalized version of the word in the NI3, that is, Merriam-Webster's Third New International Dictionary.

Finally, the verse itself is a pastiche of Edgar Allen Poe's poem, "The Bells." I do a lot of pastiches, since they're fun and give me a structure within which to work.

PROGRESSIVE PADLOCK (5,*6, 5, 4, 4)
(BELLS = only in very recent 10Cs; *BELLS = NI3)

Here, the loud, obnoxious BELLS—
Brazen BELLS!
Hawking pornographic sites and sex materiels!
Based on non-exhaustive polls,
From some marketing ATOLLS,
Writ by men who can't BEHAVE,
And who write "Sav! Sav!"
In their tracts,
In a clamorous appealing to the hapless email reader,
In a maddened supplication to the harried note-deleter.
It is clear we need to plead our
Bold and presidential leader,
With a resolute endeavor,
"End—end this plague forever!"
And he answers to the country:
"Oh, the BELLS, BELLS, BELLS!
We will find the cruel cartels,
And the knaves,
Will be punished if they flee,
To the Alps, or to the sea,
Or to India's basaltic HAVEN caves."
Yet the reader fully knows,
Despite speeches,
And loud screeches,
How the number of it grows;
Yet the reader clearly tells,
Despite crowing,
And NATOing,
How the number of it swells,
Like the Monty Python skit in which the Vikings sing of *BELLS—
Of the BELLS—
Of the BELLS, BELLS, BELLS, BELLS,
BELLS, BELLS, BELLS—
The annoying mass-deploying of the BELLS.
=TABLESAW, West Hills CA
tablesaw: -- (Default)
With my new computer and many new things around my house, I've been disinclined to continually update, which saddens me a bit. To give myself something to post for a while, I've decided to put up dome of the word puzzles that I've written for the Enigma, the publication of the National Puzzlers' League.

The puzzles that grace the pages of the Enigma are unique. The majority are called flats and involve a set of words or phrases that interrelate somehow. For example, if you change the fifth letter in the word "irrigate" you get the word "irritate;" this is called a fifth-letter change. (Simple enough, then.) These words form the answer, also called the "base", to the flat.

The kind of base forms the title of the puzzle. The text of the puzzle is written in verse. (I don't know why, they just are.) Each time a word from the base would be used in the verse, the baseword is replaced with a "cueword." Cuewords are usually easy to spot because they are in ALL CAPS and often clash with the rest of the verse. Using the irrigate/irritate example, a sentence might go "Whenever I have to ONE my crops, I get mad and TWOed." (Note the way that "irritate" was conjugated. This applies to making plurals as well).

To make things easier, the flat comes with an enumeration that tells one how long a word is and whether it's capitalized or not. The enumeration also includes tagging that will tell you which dictionaries to find words in. As a default, the NPL uses Merriam-Webster's Tenth Collegiate Dictionary, which can be found online at www.m-w.com.

More information on all of these topics can be find in the NPL Guide, and I'll give more information as it becomes necessary. For now, here's an easy puzzle to get you started, from last year's December issue:

DELETION (6)
At TreeForever, fake perennials
Built to last through bicentennials
Leave small bits of plastic offal
On the plant floor by the troughful.
Pity, then, the lonely runt who's
ONEing up by sweeping ONE TWOs.
=TABLESAW, West Hills, CA

(This flat is a deletion, which means that "ONE" is a six-letter word, and "TWO" is a five-letter word that can be found by removing one letter from "ONE". Both words are in MW's Tenth Edition, and neither is capitalized. Good luck!)

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tablesaw: -- (Default)
Tablesaw Tablesawsen

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