Friday, April 10, 2009

"Some Pig, "Terrific," and "Radiant"

I'm expecting to see these words appear in a giant spider-web in my office sometime soon. I appear to be living inside a reenactment of Charlotte's Web by E. B. White. I have seen between 7 and 10 spider babies in the last few days, and I can only assume that they hatched from a magnificent egg sack produced by a versatile spider like Charlotte. I haven't seen Charlotte herself, and there are not (as far as I'm aware) any pigs around who need to be saved from slaughter, but the spider babies made me think of Charlotte.

I'm not a big fan of spiders, to be honest, but I usually can't bring myself to kill them. Maybe it's because I read Charlotte's Web, or maybe it's because I don't like the feeling of their bodies being squished under my feet. But I'm a catch-and-release spider hunter, whatever the reason.

I will keep my eyes open but so far the only web-writing going on has been me updating twitter.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

My $0.02

I have to admit, I've been plagued by thoughts of the cent symbol for a while. Where is it? There must be a keystroke for it, so why can't I find it? But I haven't been bothered enough to actually Google it, especially out in the land of slow internets where the simplest Google search can take a frustrating 10 minutes.

But I have wondered...where IS it? I assume that it's not part of the keyboard because it's not really used any more. What costs less than $1? Okay, downloads from iTunes maybe...oops, not any more. So I guess that means we don't need the cent symbol.

But I need it! I like to say to friends, in e-mail or chat, "that's just my two cents, take it or leave it." But it's e-mail or chat--I don't want to write the word CENTS. And I CERTAINLY don't want to write "$0.02"! What is that?

So I Googled it, and I found it. You'll be happy to know that you can get the cent symbol on a Mac simply by typing option-4 (which happens to be where the dollar sign is, so it is easy to remember). I have no idea how to get it on a PC--probably Alt + some combination of 7-10 numbers typed on the number pad.

A quick scan of the search results confirmed that the cent symbol fell out of favor because it's such a small and meaningless unit of currency. Although, with the economy the way it is at the moment, I think every penny counts.

That's just my 2¢.

Friday, April 3, 2009

What's in a name?

I am driving myself completely crazy trying to come up with a name for my company. It doesn't seem like it should be that hard--after all, I didn't have any problem naming Solo Vino (although I think we should change his name to Eeyore, but that's another story).

I have tried English words, Spanish words, Spanglish words and made up words. I've tried colors and animals and plants. I've gone back and forth on whether I should include the words "digital" and "interactive" (is "digital" sooooo 90s?). I've tried anagrams for crying out loud. ANAGRAMS!

I tried to give myself a deadline of this weekend to pick a name, but I don't know if I'll stick to it. I mean once I name it, that's the name, right? Maybe it's because of my own name that I feel such pressure to come up with something perfect. My name has always, always, always been a topic of conversation when I meet people, which makes the whole idea of a name seem really important. And at the spa for the last eight months, I've been meeting dozens of new people every week, and every single one of them asks me about my name. So HOW am I supposed to come up with the right name for my business?

I have the same problem with all kinds of naming. I don't have any kids, but I have a hard time thinking what I would name any potential kids I might have (yes, I know someone else would likely have input, but still). Fortunately, I don't think I'll be facing that dilemma for a while. I also have a really hard time naming characters in stories I right. It's torture. And I usually change the names at least once in the revision process.

I am pretty good at naming animals, or at least small animals. I named a cat Seldom, which I think is the coolest name ever...although I have to give some credit to my then-boyfriend for that one. His dog was named after a character called Hayduke, and Seldom Seen Smith is a character in the same book. But I also named cats Baghira (from the Jungle Book), and Fermata (a musical symbol indicating "to hold"). I named my budgerigars Honeysuckle and Avocado. I named a beta fish Cobalt Permanganate Iron III. I named a puppy Luna (okay, maybe not brilliant, but she was the color of moonlight with gold paws, and she died when she was a baby so she's very special to me). I'm not as good with naming horses--I've named three: a big black stallion I named Cheyenne, a young male I named Canelo (masculine of Cinnamon), and a gorgeous moro I named Silver, which I admit is VERY unoriginal.

The point is, I am capable of coming up with really good names. I've even contributed good names to friends' baby-name discussions, although I don't think I've ever submitted a winner. But then again, I don't expect to.

So why is this so difficult??
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