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Earlier this week, Obama refused to sign a executive order that would have prohibited federal contractors from discriminating on the bias of sexual orientation and gender identity. This prompted a very moving sermon by our minister today, including a call not to postpone the fight for equal rights. Since I hadn't heard about this until today and I thought other people on my friends list might care, I'm sharing this information.

One of the often unspoken, but very important, stories of my life is that I was deeply hurt by legal anti-gay discrimination that my family faced when I was a child. I am greatly disappointed that, for all the progress the U.S has made, that type of discrimination is still legal.

Also, during today's sermon was the first time I heard a public statement that discrimination against GBLT people also hurts people who are not in that community. As a primarily straight person, I never quite felt at home in the GBLT community, even though I was raised in it. So the acknowledgement that my story is real, the story of being hurt by discrimination against a community I do not consider myself a part of, was a great relief.

More Music: Garden Circle of Songs

Hello Everyone!

I'm going to be hosting a regular song circle at my apartment (ping me if you need the address) on the third Friday of each month. (We will switch to the fourth Friday in case of convention conflict.) The circle will run from 8pm to 11pm. The first of these "Garden Circle of Songs" will be this Friday January 21st. The next one will be Friday, February 25th.

This is a talent optional song circle, where all are welcome to participate. Instruments are welcome, as are just singers. I expect a mix of sing/play-alongs and individual performances. If you want to lead the group in a song, please bring copies to shares, or a print out so I can make copies. Songs will probably be mostly folk, filk, and rock tunes, but feel free to bring something else as well.

Other notes:
*The house is pet-free.
*The house is *not* childproof. Children are welcome only if they are well supervised.
*Our bathroom is up a flight of stairs. If stairs are a problem for you, please use the restroom before arriving.
*On-street parking is available on Garden Circle, Summer Street and Harris Street.
*I will provide water and herbal tea. If you are going to want some other than that to drink, please bring it.
*You are welcome to come and just listen if you want.
*This is an open invite.
*RSVPs are appreciated.

Arisia! Life rocks!

Arisia was really awesome for me this year! I was running music track, which went really well. I was literally unable to attend all of the music programming and events, but all the ones I went to had good energy, and most had good attendance as well. I had a number of people tell me that they enjoyed the music programming and some others tell me that they wished they had made it to more of the music programming, which I appreciated. Thank you to everyone who participated!

Personally, I sang a lot more than I usually do at con. I ran out of repertoire and voice Sunday night, which made me sad, but was worth it. Some new people showed up for open filk and some of them performed songs as well, so there was new music, and new people, and it made me very happy. One of high point of the con was observing orawnzva inspire Seanan McGuire to ASL death threats by parodying one of her songs during the Mad Science song circle.

The Stranger Ways/Sassafrass concert was incredible. Congratulations to aurelia_star, juldea, faerieboots, emp42ress, natbudin, zebediah, and usernamenumber!

I didn't make to much non-music stuff. Happily, I did manage carve out some time to talk with phoenix1701 and Craig, both of whom I only see a few times a year. I briefly saw many other friends and shared hugs and short conversations. The only non-music panel I went to was "Getting Geeky about Religion," which was nifty.

Side note: On Friday, I got a student teaching placement, relieving what had been a major concern. So yay!

LARP stuff

So I bid a game, "Kidnapped!", for Festival of the LARPs, only to discover that the LARP community around here has roughly no interest in create-your-own-character games. So I have withdrawn that game bid and am instead going to run a Scandinavian game, "New Voices in Art" instead. So if you were unsure what to play in the Saturday morning slot of Festival you may want to check that out.

I still think that the premise of Kidnapped! could make for a good LARP, but I clearly need to write character sheets. I don't have time now, but that may be a summer project. If anyone is interested in working with me on that, please let me know; I'd love to have a co-writer or two!

Other games I'm thinking of playing are as follows, though I probably will have to leave some time free for work during the weekend.
Friday night: Timelines, since I love time travel stories
Saturday afternoon: Concordance Station.
Saturday night: Resonance. I had a similar idea for a LARP once, and so I'm really interested in seeing how this plays out. Also, I've enjoyed other games by the authors.
Sunday afternoon: Costumed Henchmen. People at SLAW seemed to enjoy this.

Winter Break Party! Dec. 29

happyfunpaul and I both have time off from school, so we are hosting a party, on December 29th. The party will be at my place (ping me if you need the address), starting at 4pm and going until people get tired (probably around 11pm). Since we like music and games and conversation, but only have two separate party areas, we are dividing the party space-time. In the first half of the party, there will be music upstairs and conversation downstairs. In the second half there will be conversation upstairs and games downstairs. Feel free to come to for any part of the time you'd like to. We will provide some snacks and drinks, but more tasty things are appreciated. This party is open invite for anyone who knows either of us and their significant others.

We hope to see you then!

Labor Wars Reflection

This past weekend I played in Labor Wars. I don't usually play weekend-long LARPs, partially because they are tiring, but mostly because I have a hard time emotionally separating myself from my character afterwards. Labor Wars was not an exception to this. I had a good time, and am very glad I played, but I woke up this morning with echoes of the game battering the inside of my head.

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Last Minute Gathering This Saturday at My Place

There seems to be shortage of social happenings this weekend, and I'd really like to see people. So I'm hosting a gathering/party tomorrow (Saturday) from 2pm until 10 or 11ish. There will be hanging out, talking, maybe some gaming and/or music. I'll provide some snacks and some board games. People are encouraged to bring soft drinks (I don't have many), additional tasty things, musical instruments, and games.

If you need my address or directions, you can email me at this username at gmail. There is street parking around my house, and the house is pet-free. SO's and friends who aren't on LJ, are also invited.
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I have too much stuff

Many of you haven't seen or heard much of me lately. This is because despite still being only semi-employed I've been very busy. Let me tell you what's going on for those of you who are curious.

I have decided to go to Boston University School of Education to get my Masters of Arts in Teaching next year. Summer classes start in May, so I've been thinking about what I'm going to take and filling out paper work.

I'm currently taking a class with Harvard Extension School called Math of Teaching Algebra. The class is awesome, but I'm looking forward to not having to drive to Jamaica Plains every Tuesday night.

Also on the professional front, I've been doing a lot edublogging (at and reading. People are actually commenting on and even using my writing! And I'm learning a lot. However, this is probably the biggest time sink I've got right now and I've been thinking of this work as a self-directed class. I need to find a way to keep involved with this segment of blog-o-sphere while spending less time on it.

I'm still tutoring two students a week.

For me Festival is over now and I'm going to the Massfilc meeting today. Festival was awesome! The run I organized of "The Road Not Taken" went pretty well, despite being short a couple of players, and so I might run that again sometime if there is interest.

Next week, I'm performing at NEFFA with Massfilc at 6pm on Saturday. If you want to see me play rhythm ukulele you should totally show up. My thoughts on this are basically, "WTF, I'm performing? Music? In front of people I don't know? How did this happen? When did I stop sucking at being musical?" Yeah, so I'm kind of nervous, even though I know what I'm supposed to do and think the group is sounding pretty awesome in practice. It'll be a load of my mind after this is over, and some more free time. Oh and did I mention, that on the same day as this performance I'm also going to the BU admitted graduate student day. Yeah, overbooked.

The weekend after that, I'm helping run TMA at RPI. I'll be stepping up into a full GM role for the first time with TMA, so that's taking some mental energy to prepare for.

I've got three jobs for Pi-Con this year: LARP coordinator, Con-book Ad sales, and Programming assistant. I've been working on these, but there is still a bunch more stuff to do. Hopefully, I'll be able to get the Ad sales contact list done before the meeting on Thursday.

I'm organizing the Music Track for Arisia again this year. It's probably early for me to be worried about this, but after last year my big takeaway lesson was contact potential program participants earlier to get their input.

I think that's all of the responsibilities I have on my plate right now, but it's possible that I've forgotten one or two. I need to stop volunteering for new things, even if they are fun and good things to be doing.

Career stuff is moving

I've been accepted to Boston University's Masters of Arts in Teaching program, which was one of my top choices. I have interviews scheduled with two of the other programs I applied to.

I've created a math education blog, where I'll be talking more about the process of becoming a teacher, education books I'm reading, thoughts about math education, interesting math problems, and other stuff that seems relevant. If you're interested you can find it at