I Think My Cat Is A Nap-Hole

The Canada Day weekend continues, with this of course being the big day. So Happy Canada Day all y’all.

Today was another excellent day. I awoke around 7 this morning1 knowing full well that I had nothing planned and I really didn’t need to jump out of bed.

Best. Feeling. Ever.

This meant that I didn’t need to disturb Elliot who was still purring softly next to my leg. Which of course I used as an excuse to lay about for a while. I of course checked the interwebs and played a game of KenKen or two. However, eventually I had to get up. Nature called, both in the form of hunger, and, well, nature calling.

Once I was finally up, made breakfast, fed the fuzzball, and showered, I decided that I couldn’t waste any more of the beauty that was today. As such, I hopped on my bike for a casual ride. For whatever reason, I don’t think it’s possible for me to have a casual ride. The minute I’m on the bike I want to go fast. As fast as my legs will take me. While I can’t sustain any great speed for any substantial length of time2, I did manage to hit almost 50km an hour today3.

After my ride I was inadvertently tricked into a wee catnap by a softly purring fuzzball. He was stretched out on my stripped bed4 and I thought I would lie down and rub his belly. That lasted about 5 seconds before I myself had nodded off.

Anyway, the rest of the day included chatting with my parents, walking around, and basically doing everything that had anything to do with relaxing and recharging.

Mission accomplished!

Oh, and I may have also cooked5.

I really do love this weekend.

1 So yes, yes I did sleep in today. W00t!

2 Yet.

4 Sunday is laundry day.

5 Well, if you call heating up some fresh berries and granola cooking6. I do, but then again, my culinary masterpiece is a toasted english muffin with avocado and tuna.

6 Full recipe below.

Get Your Boogie On With Edible Books

For the last few weeks I’ve been enjoying another nerdly game. Yes, I’m still playing KenKen, but there’s a new game in town. And this one is challenging and often hilarious. It requires people from around the globe, and demands a lot of imagination. For lack of a better name, the game is called Twitter Hash Tag Boogie. Okay, I totally just made that up, but I’m going to go with it in the hopes that it sticks.

What exactly is Twitter Hash Tag Boogie? It’s probably easier to demonstrate then explain. And to do that, I’ll call out two people who contribute to this game on a daily basis; @MyVogonPoetry, and @Expatina (if you have a Twitter account, I suggest you follow them. You won’t be disappointed).

At some point today, @MyVogonPoetry had posted a tweet containing the following hashtag:

#EdibleBooks

Seeing this, one might think what the what? But it’s not as complicated as it looks. It’s sort of like a clue and a direction all in one. A cluerection? That so doesn’t sound right. I digress.

Anyway, in response I tweeted the following:

• The Hunt for Red Octoberfest Sausage

• To Sirloin with Love
• Lord of the Onion Rings
• I Gnocchi This Much Is True
• The Hunchbackbacon of Notre Dame
• Mary Shelley‘s Franks ‘N Beans
• Blood Pudding Diamonds
• A Clockwork Orangejuice
• Gone With the Wine
• Hot Dog Soldiers
• Blood Orange Meridian
• Young Goodman Brown Rice
• A Million Little Reeses Pieces
• The Highwaymanwich

Get it? I’ve listed titles of books but have modified them to include something edible. It’s an exceptionally simple concept, but you’d be amazed how difficult it can be to get started. The problem is that the minute ‘books’ is selected, every book title leaves your brain. Of course, once you get going, the ideas fly and it’s almost difficult to keep up. Additionally, you can watch all the other people out there coming up with some pretty amazing responses. I enjoyed The Scarlet Cheddar, Rosemary’s Baby Back Ribs, Sex and the Twinkie, Cacciatore-22, and Alice in Wonderbread to name a few.

Earlier today, I also joined in on @expatina’s #CorporateSongs Twitter Hash Tag Boogie, by adding the following to the list of tweets

• All Along the Water Cooler
• Saturday Night’s Alright For Faxing

Clearly, I didn’t do so well with that particular game. Of course, I was in the middle of an analysis and writing up my NSERC grant, so maybe my mind was focussed on other things. Sure, we’ll go with that.

Anyway, if you think of any good responses to either #EdibleBooks or #CorporateSongs, please leave them in the comments. Or better yet, jump on Twitter and join in the fun.

KenKen is FunFun

Following my surgery a few weeks ago, my friends Gerarda and Alan dropped by with a most excellent ‘get well soon’ gift. The gift included a hilarious card, a trashy tabloid, and the book that I’m holding in the picture to the left. That book is a book of KenKen puzzles.

What the hell is KenKen?

Think Sudoku, but better.

Like Sudoku, KenKen starts with a grid of numbers. Within this book, there are grids that are 4×4, 5×5, and 6×6, but other sizes exist.

The rules are simple; fill in the digits 1 through $n$ where $n$ is the length of one dimension of the grid (i.e., the grid is $n\times n$) in each row AND each column. The catch, you must do so while satisfying the hints that are provided in the squares, and each row and column can contain each digit only once. As you can see below, the grid is divided into several sections. One of the squares within each region will have a clue. The clue will give you the result of a mathematical formula, and the operation that is to be used ($+, -, \times, \div$)

For example, in the 6×6 grid to the right, we have 3 squares in the upper left corner that must multiply to 80 (80x). Since this is a 6×6 grid, we can only use the digits 1 through 6. I begin by trying to figure out what can’t work. Since 80 is not divided evenly by 3 or 6, I can ignore these numbers. That means I could use 1, 2, 4, and 5. If I opt to use 1, that means the other 2 digits must multiply to 80. But, we don’t have digits large enough to get to 80 with only 2 of them. Note that the largest digit available (that being a 5) when multiplied by itself, only brings us to 25. So 1 can’t be used here either. We are left with 2, 4, and 5. Clearly, I can’t use 2 either or the remaining two digits would have to multiply to 40, and as we just determined, we can’t get to that value with the digits we have available. Hence, we need to double up one of the numbers. In this case, we can use 4, 4, and 5.

Since we have the rule that each row and column must contain the digits 1 through 6 only once, we would necessarily have to separate the 4s, as illustrated in the picture. And from this, we continue to fill in each of the rows and columns using the information provided.

Cool stuff!

Anyway, these are very addictive and I’ve been playing them almost daily since Gerarda and Alan dropped off the book. So, a huge thank you to Gerarda and Alan for this. It has made the recovery process so much more tolerable.

For those that want to give it a try, check out the KenKen website. It goes up to the challenging 9×9 grid.