Archive for DIY

battery recharged!

Posted in pictures, Travel with tags , , , , , on September 10, 2022 by xi'an


Posted in Travel, University life with tags , , , , , , , on September 6, 2022 by xi'an

My 2017 EliteBook HP laptop broke in the most bizarre fashion, in that the battery started inflating to the point of pushing the back cover (and stopped functioning as well). It happened at the worst moment, of course, as I was boarding a train to Brittany for family matters, whose power plug kept cutting every five minutes. I did not realise the entire issue with the battery until I reached my final destination and rushed to a computer repair shop, which did not want to do anything on the spot (of course!) but pointed out to me the problem with the back cover.  Which I removed a few minutes later in a lawnmower repair shop, held by a dear cousin of mine. Now, the laptop is still working, but waiting for a new battery I ordered as soon as I saw the state of the old one..!

a journal of the [tolerated] plague and [mostly] pestilence year

Posted in Books, Kids, Mountains, pictures, Travel, University life with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 31, 2022 by xi'an

Read Among Our Weapons by Ben Aaronovitch, the ninth installment in the Rivers of London urban fantasy series. Which I found superior to the earlier volumes. As the ninth novel in the series, it obviously shows some signs of fatigue in the relatively thin plot that painstakingly connects a series of no-spoilers with the Spanish Inquisition, in the convenient so convenient appearance of a new kind of magical being, and in the convoluted uncovering of this connection in the final pages. However, the witty remarks of Peter Grant still make me smile and his move to becoming a father is rather charming. Recommended for the comforting feeling of being reunited with a familiar.

Over the four week summer period “everyone” was away (on vacations), I managed to deal with long delayed projects, keep my Biometrika slate mostly clean, and work on an incoming grant. Plus, made an uninterrupted series of compotes from my neighbour’s fallen apples and rhubarb sticks from the local market, as I found a much faster way to bake them in the microwave oven, with no danger for kitchen pans! Observing in the process a phase transition phenomenon where the contents very suddenly change structure and the bowl overflows, despite my frequent stirring. And I found time to lazily bike with my wife on weekends to traffic-free Paris, incl. light dinners outside (except during heatwaves), like a nice and perfectly spicy Korean bulgogi near Denfert. Had some DIY experiences as well, incl. changing my 2000 Twingo car battery, which had run flat after at least three months of idleness (now that our children no longer drive it)! Which as usual induced several (dreaded) trips to the DIY store…

Watched Extraordinary Attorney Woo, which is a Korean TV series following an autistic attorney at law, which has some original features but leaves me uneasy about its rather charicaturesque depiction of autism. At least, addressing discrimination and sexism (albeit with mixed results, as in the stereotyped representation of both female heads of the law firms). And The Soul, a Taiwanese horror + sci-fi + noir movie whose foggy atmosphere was rather appealing but alas following a terrible scenario.

a DIY lesson

Posted in Kids with tags , , , on May 30, 2010 by xi'an

Last morning, I biked with my daughter to the local market as she was looking for a cloth bracelet that is seemingly highly in fashion at her school! The first shop we came upon was selling the thing at an outrageous price and she decided this was not worth the expense. So we walked around till we came by the only haberdasher’s shop in the neighbourhood and I suggested she took a look inside, just in case. As it happened, the haberdasher had got wind of the school fashion and she was selling appropriate pieces of cloth along with the compulsory trinkets! In the end, my daughter got enough material to make eleven of those (transient) bracelets at a cost lower than the original price. A good Saturday lesson in practical economics. (And a fairly unique opportunity for using the word haberdasher which has always sounded somehow military to me, suggesting a type of fighting corps, maybe because of the association with halberd! Anyway, it sounds much more martial than the French mercerie… And its Norman translation mercery.)

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