I lived in Massachusetts until I was 14, when I moved (with my parents & brother) to Christchurch in Aotearoa. I subsequently worked out that I vastly prefer Wellington. Unfortunately, work has me living in Sydney, where I teach mathematics & similar at a university. My concubine is an extraordinary, beautiful, talented, hilarious & thoroughly delightful woman of about my age. We've got three kids who are also wonderful. I like to try to play (and sometimes write) music but sadly cannot sightread.
Concubine: The woman I love, the mother of my children. I have used this term since once, chatting with a Parisian guy at a conference, I was talking about her & mentioned "my partner." He stopped me to ask what that meant. I said, "well, you know, we're in a de facto relationship; we live together, have kids together & so on, but we're not actually married." He said, "ah, yes, okay, go on." I was just about to go on when, fortunately, I thought to ask, "how do you say that in French?" He said (what sounded to me like) "concoobeen." I thought that was hilarious because, of course, in English that sounds totally medieval. Anyhow, we're planning to marry on 2 January 2010, so I'm using the word "concubine" at every opportunity while I still can. Deeply Carved Writings: I could aspire to depth (though I promise nothing) but carved writings? Like so many before me, I've chosen an essentially arbitrary blog title, but see here for the term's provenance. PAN: Such an evocative word. Since classical times it has stood for madness on the one hand and "everything" on the other. Twenty five centuries later, we have www.passiveaggressivenotes.com, my madness, my everything.
The Prophecy: I started my current job in January 2004. At that time, I was teamed up with a desktop PC at least 6 months old. We have, it is said, a three-year replacement policy for computers. IT's current plan is to replace my PC with a laptop. It seemed to someone at some point like a reasonable idea to try to buy in bulk, and so for some while IT has been negotiating with possible suppliers about what will turn out to be quite a big order. Due, though, to the order's size, management insists that three fully detailed and exactly comparable quotes be obtained for this complex order (involving different sorts of computers & service packages & so on). And I gather there are other equally maddening administrative hoops IT's having to jump through. Last time I spoke with the IT guy about it, I said, "It'll be this year, though, won't it?" The answer was too long to include here, but it began with a wry chuckle.
The thing I hate the most about my old computer is the noisy cooling fan. It sounds like an aeroplane. (I've often been tempted to find out whether it does anything else like an aeroplane. I work on the fifth floor.)
[Update, July '08: The Prophecy hath been fulfilled. A big improvement, and none too soon.]
Troy McClure: Not my real name. You might remember Troy McClure from such series as 2 through 10 of The Simpsons. I like The Simpsons as much as the average blogger, I guess, but the choice of the pseudonym "Troy McClure" was made in the heat of the moment in one of my first posts on PAN. Because, like Wade before me, I was mainly inspired to blog by PAN & my friends there, it seems natural to carry that pseudonym over here.