notes from the city margins

Good evening, intertubes.

past blaster

When I'm old, I'm going to be a curmudgeon. I'm practicing that chin-jut, the protruded neck, the lips wrapping into the mouth (in anticipation of losing my teeth), and most of all, the complaining about change. It's going to be so great! So great, in fact, that I think I should practice a bit.

. . .

Kids these days just want to travel all the time, and it's like they don't even know where they live.

Well, not this mec!

Way back in 2009 I remember that I used to set out with your grandmother (you know we had 1024 kids, and they 2048 apiece, what with the bug in the babytron and all) and just go walking around Barcelona.

One day we took the metro out to Santa Coloma, then the bus (800 or B30) up to the top of the hill, and set out climbing.

We found the most amazing things!

The clover was in fragrant bloom. Yes, there were horses too, back before they died out in the horse plague of '23 of course. You'll have to be content with your ponybot.

But most importantly: there was more old stuff. After walking a ways, we stumbled upon an Iberian settlement. Iberian, as in the preroman tribe, from the 5th century before Jesus. No, I wasn't around then!

But yes, it was pretty neat. Or "gromlic" as you kids say these days, I guess...

. . .

I couldn't quite figure a way to bring that to a close, but I figure that's a quality of old people, so: check. I'm coming, future, but watch out, the past is coming too.


Readers of mine will perhaps remember the ongoing drama that is my bike: the couple dozen broken spokes, the broken rear cassette, cracked and re-welded frame, stolen seat and bell, broken cables, the replaced wheel, etc. Well the last couple months brought a few more novelties:

  • They stole my kickstand, as my bike was parked on the street in front of my house. I was irked until I remembered that for some reason I had an extra kickstand at home: sweetness.

  • Coming down a ramp from the sidewalk to the street on my commute to work, the bump rattled the back splashguard down and it caught a crab: as the back wheel rolled forward, the metal splashguard rolled up into a spiral, like a snail. Incredible, and hilarious! I had my camera but without any charge. I broke off that piece of the splashguard, threw it away, and kept on riding.

    (No, I don't normally use the sidewalk, but in this stretch it's the right thing to do.)

  • Today I went out to find they had stolen my seat, which was pretty industrious of them, considering that it required a wrench and a boltcutter. It is surely the shittiest bike on the whole street (part of my strategy), and the seatpost was completely oxidized. I hope they have a good time with it!

I'm changing parking spots but still, all told the situation is in my favor I think: about 50 euros of upkeep per year, and the bike 200 or 250 euros to start with, and it's easily the most important activity I do for my health, more than aikido.


Well, with regards to travel: I lie. I'm going to Boston for the international Lisp conference, with my colleague jao, and later to LA to work for a week or two. I'm especially excited about the ILC, to meet key figures from Lisp past and present, and to chat with folks. I'll give a lightning talk there about Guile's new compiler and decompiler tower, which should be fun.

colonphon: brought to you by the humble colon. here's another one:

3 responses

  1. hsu says:

    Are those you and jao? Who is who?
    I miss jao's ramblings :P

  2. wingo says:

    Hi hsu! That's actually another colleague of mine, Kwindla, and jao. Jao is on the left. His hands are in the universal "these things interlock in a certain way" pose.

    Jao should write more, indeed. I'm sure he's the first to say that!

  3. pete says:

    indoor bike parking? there must be some reason it isn't happening.

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