Mark Grealish

Cats and wizardry.



Ho ho ho, deformed monsters!

(That’s what I told the Horde as I rained (reigned?!) death upon them from my reindeer >:) So, folk, gentlemen and ladies, this, this I tell you now, this was my Christmas: Why yes, your eyes don’t deceive you. At least not on this occasion. Sometimes they might, when you look at me and think […]

Garrett Clanton Grealish, master of ham

So, um

03:03:22 Mariah Clanton … 03:03:25 Mariah Clanton mark 03:03:31 me Mariah Elizabeth 03:03:42 Mariah Clanton caira is singing a song to the tune of ‘i got you babe’ 03:03:52 Mariah Clanton but she’s changed it to ‘i got you bitch’

Most. Adorable. Cats. Ever.

I came across this while researching something else entirely:

Steak Sandwiches

Something that has always irked me about Ireland is our half-assed attempts to implement some foreign dish. Paddy told Joe about this foreign yokey he had while on holiday in Spain, and wouldn’t it be just great if we could have the same thing at home? No, Paddy, it wouldn’t. To me, Paddy, a “steak […]


I’m utterly convinced that the next tier of World of Warcraft: Cataclysm raid instances is going to feature an encounter where I have to slap the ass of the main tank and cry “yahoo!” in order to avoid a wipe.


The Litany Against Politicians

I shall not vote. Voting is the mind-killer. Voting is the little death which bring total obliteration. I shall face the election. I shall allow it to pass over me and through me. Where it has passed there will be nothing. Only I will remain.


I filled out and submitted my CAO application early last week. On the form, I was asked to describe my qualifications and history in one thousand characters or less. Being the occasional idiot that I am, I skimmed the question and set myself the task of writing one thousand words. I came away with nine […]

I win

19:40:33 Mariah Clanton fucking seriously 19:40:38 Mariah Clanton I HATE COMPUTERS 19:40:40 me Rage, goddess 19:40:49 Mariah Clanton AND FUCK YOU MARK, YOU WERE RIGHT. FUCKING LINNUX. 19:40:53 Mariah Clanton i’m installing it once i reformat 19:41:00 Mariah Clanton shut up :|

It’s V-day

I have a shotgun, lawn chair, airy perch, laptop, four-pack of Red Bull and enough ammo for each one of you sons of bitches. Bring on the love, fuckers.

V-day #2

Stolen content

Adorably ugly, I say.

V-day #3

There. I’ve covered the entire spectrum. Shoo. Come back in a year. (Happy birthday bose frau! <3)

Rode the six hundred

Gobshite to right of me, Eejits to left of me, Feckers in front of me Volley’d and thunder’d; Inadvertently or otherwise, I’ve directly insulted most of the political candidates running in Galway over the course of the past week. If it wasn’t for the fact that all of this occurred on Twitter in relation to […]

Behold my (Windows) desktop:


Stolen from Jackie

They visited Las Vegas in January.

My in-game GUI screenshot

I had people asking me. Here you go. ;)

Be triumphant with Triumphant

In the beginning, there was a guild on Arthas. An Alliance guild. An Alliance guild wholly focused on player versus player combat. A core Alliance PVP-focused guild. An Alliance PVP Core guild, you might say. They are Alliance Guild α. The guild master of Alliance Guild α, after months of trash talking Horde Guild β, […]

Again? Again.

[mark][~] # rm -r /cygdrive/f/World\ of\ Warcraft/ Pew pew pew goes the folder.

This is why I PVP

As battleground games go, it was hard-fought. I spent the entire match rushing with my guildmates between one or another cap trying to push back the black tide of Horde that swept down upon us. Near the end of the game I wound up running solo defence at the Farm and then Blacksmith for more […]

I maded breakfast…

…and then I eated it.


HOWTO: Stop your Acer Aspire netbook running Ubuntu from going to sleep when unplugged

The largest annoyance I’ve encountered to date while running Ubuntu Linux on my Acer Aspire D150 netbook has been with Gnome Power Manager. A reported problem on the bug trackers and forums, I and other users have been forced up until now to use an alternative like XFCE4’s (excellent and standalone) power manager. Until this […]

Costume time

Garrett and Caira kiss

Dance, bitch

What else can one do when confronted with the lack of balance in 2’s? We had a dance party at about the twenty five-minute mark. And ninja’d a victory, basically, by lulling them.

The bunny cometh


A picture to fit the book

Right as I’m in the middle of reading Songs of the Dying Earth, a compilation of short stories set in Jack Vance’s Dying Earth universe, the above image of the sun being eclipsed by the Earth started to make the rounds of the Internet. +1 appropriate.


Age +1

Go me!


You sometimes just have to smile at the “ohshit” update dumps after a new Ubuntu release: [root][mark] # apt-get upgrade Reading package lists... Done Building dependency tree Reading state information... Done The following packages have been kept back: libsyncdaemon-1.0-1 python-ubuntuone-client ubuntuone-client ubuntuone-client-gnome The following packages will be upgraded: app-install-data apt apt-transport-https apt-utils bamfdaemon evince evince-common […]

T-minus three days

If I had to pick a number between zero and one hundred, I would say I down to about thirty percent embarrassed about the idea of bringing friends/family/strangers into this house. The three of us here have spent the last week bit-by-bit going through rooms, sorting the good from the bad and giving the a […]

Quality over quantity

Having predicted a decrease in the time I’ll have to play World of Warcraft in the foreseeable future, I sagely signed up for the 2011 Arena Pass tournament with two guild mates. To the victor, the spoils!

Oh noes!

[W From] [Blìzzàrds]: Dear player, your account has been the subject of complaints from several other players. You are required to validate your account within an hour or you may experience service interruptions. Please validate your account at [] Whatever shall I do if the Blìzzàrds ban me?

They landed

Garrett was fiery, Mariah was tired, and Caira slept for 14 solid hours.

Best. Animated GIF. Ever.

Kittens on a Roomba.

T-Plus Four Days: 7am

I’ll bite: It’s hard to catch a breath of thought, let alone draft, edit, format and post a blog post, when I have a small child dangling off of the ends of my arm. But lets try, eh? I miss sleep. Eight-ten hours of undisturbed sleep is fast becoming a fond memory of far-off happier […]

Caira loves Ireland


I know you read this blog. I got your in-game mail. Let’s do the Tournament. Contact me.

I’m pretty sure I blogged about this before, but…

…I love this little script. I just do. Death to tap-to-click! #!/bin/bash # Disable tap-to-click. synclient MaxTapTime=0 # Disable vertical edge scrolling. # synclient VertEdgeScroll=0 # Disable horizontal edge scrolling. synclient HorizEdgeScroll=0 exit 0

There are some things netbooks can’t do…

[mark][2010-05-21] # ls *.cr2 | wc -l # How many Canon raw files are there in this folder? 141 [mark][2010-05-21] # for file in *.cr2; do ufraw-batch --out-type=jpg --compression=100 --out-depth=8 $file; done # Convert them all to .jpg. Gee-up, laptop! I’ll be AFK for the next two hours.

Prep version 1

For reasons-reasons other than convenience-that I would not be able to fully articulate should you choose to put a gun to my head, I store my website’s files (WordPress), database and content images separately. I guess if one’s data centre is bombed then the other two will be okay? Well, back to the convenience. I […]

We went to Dangan yesterday

More adorableness to follow… …the spelling checker didn’t flag adorableness. Adorableness is a real word? My life…completes! More adorableness to follow. I’m doing a batch upload for Mariah’s family.

Wedding anniversary +1

The Hero of Clanton

sniffle Jayne! The Man they call Jayne! He robbed from the rich and he gave to the poor, He stood up to the man and he gave him what for. Our love for him now, aint hard to explain, The hero of Canton, the man they call Jayne! Our Jayne saw the Mudders’ backs breakin’ […]


All a-tumbling

A huge thanks from Mariah and I to Michelle of the Galway Circus Project and her daughter Nicola for arranging this tumbling class for the kids. They really had a ball at it, as you can see. :) The photos weren’t altered (a shocker for me!). My laptop is all-Linux right now, and I can’t […]

I’m a 1%-er!

According to numbers presenting in Troy Hunt’s analysis of leaked Sony passwords, I am among the 1% of people who use incomprehensible and wrist-spraining passwords.

It’s all in your perspective?

Oh, marriage. I’m right around the age (30) where marriage and kids become a natural topic of concern in relationships. Specifically among those whom I went to school with and lived near, however casually and coolly I might know them now. And guess what, kids? In all of your stupid, expensive, stereotypical “fairytale” weddings where […]


I got this in my inbox today: Dear Mark, Your NETELLER account has a negative balance of 25.89 EUR and is being assigned to our Collections team for resolution. Please make arrangements for the prompt repayment of your outstanding balance. You can email for information on available payment options in your region. We appreciate […]


Marirah fell down the stairs last night and sprained her ankle. We were in casualty in UCHG until 3am. I fell down the stairs this morning (while carrying Garrett) and got a sweet foot-long bruise on my arm. Garrett came through unscathed. He laughed and clapped.

I’m teeth -1

Caira and I kicked roughhousing up a notch. We took adventure time to the next level.

Teeth +0.5

Following a referral on I visited the Galway branch of the Smiles franchise. Wow. Seriously: Immediate appointment, friendly service, an up-front and frank policy regarding involved costs…and a further appointment for filling work next Tuesday. Fair play.

These photos did *not* sit in a folder for two weeks

The rest of the Grealish clan v.2

In fairness, it has been about five years since I last did this:

I can’t think

There’s some kids show on the TV in the living room, the washing machine is going brr, brr, brr, the dyer is humming, the dishwasher is whooshing, Caira is standing here staring at me and Garrett is pounding his head against the floor upstairs (from the sound of things). I’m already stressed about tomorrow and […]

Blood and glory!

So I guess that all my work here, here and here has paid off, because according to the Arena Junkies Arena Title Calculator I’m in line for titles from Season 9 (Ruin battlegroup). Hello and hello Challenger (top 35%) and Rival (top 10%). (Let’s get the obligatory subtext that none of this is any kind […]

Teeth +lots

I went to the dentist today. I really like her bed(chair?)side manner: She said hello, sat me in a chair, Did Stuff To My Mouth for ninety minutes, bid me good day and walked away. No stupid small talk. Okay. So. My smile: Fixed. If you’ve ever met me in person (or chatted to me […]

Photowalk: This Saturday July 2, Merlin Park forest and castle

I see absolutely no harm in posting this here, because any kind of larger crowd for this photowalk is very much welcome. No better chance to photograph a ruined keep in a mysteriously misty, wet and rainy forest (because really, when isn’t it wet, rainy or misty here) is to be found than in Galway […]



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Merlin Photowalk report

Distractions have become such a problem that I’m writing this in Vim. I’ll fix formatting later when I import this into WordPress. Okay so, last Saturday’s Merlin Park photowalk was a really fantastic (albeit small!) success and very much enjoyed by everyone who attended, so far as I can tell. There was a small contingent […]

Nyan Cat

I’m not always one to link to the Cat Meme of the Week, but my gods, Caira and Garrett were held hypnotized by this for over an hour. Garrett cried when we closed down the the unofficial official site after thirty minutes. Also: Best. Wallpaper. Ever.

A World of Warpeeves

One of my biggest World of Warcraft pet peeves are PVE podcasters and bloggers who don’t regularly PVP. They talk about how “hard it is” and that “it is as much about participating and having fun as it is about winning.” No. Winning is the entire point of an arena or battleground. It is the […]

Caira’s 5th: The aftermath

“Party!” “Zzzzzzz.” “Party!” “Zzzzzzz.” “Party!” “Zzzzzzz.” “Party!” “Zzzzzzz….go to sleep Garrett.” “Party! Party! Cake party! Daddyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy.”


We’re moving house! :D

Reins of the Raven Lord

Fuck. Yes. According to Masserah’s statistics, I got the drop on my 65th kill. Now I just need to farm my Deathcharger.

091 Labs has gone to the birds…

We held an impromptu “Recapture your Lost Childhood” workshop that featured entertaining my children and feeding ducks breads. From left to right is Mariah, Caira, Garrett, Jodi, Domhall, Aaron and Oisin. Updated! There actually were birds:

Midnight is that magic moment. No, seriously.

If I ingest caffeine I can usually sail on the buzz until I hard crash at about 3-4am. I’ve made arrangements for September’s photowalk, put out some threads asking for help with some technical headaches, read a whole chapter of A Dance with Dragons, cleaned the kitchen and a load of laundry. I’m about to […]

The fucking nuclear option

Okay, so I fucked my pretty, happy, auto-configured desktop configuration by installing Gnome Shell. It wasn’t worth it. I’ve found Gnome Shell to be sluggish, fiddly and honestly less usable to me than Openbox. My experience may not reflect yours, however. I want to fix it, roll back the changes and generally remedy this situation. […]

Cock and balls

The computer’s PSU exploded. The hard disk is okay and merrily humming away connected to my laptop. Here’s a video of an explosion for illustration:

Supper time

Caira wanted a peanut butter-style grilled cheese sandwich. Her My Little Pony wept blood as some nameless thing, incandescent and fey, sprang forth from blistering lions of the frying pan. Caira described the sandwich as, “A little burnt, but that’s okay.”

Cheese: Caira


On the Corrib Princess

Alas for Old Spice having stolen all the good lines. Mariah and I took Garrett and Caira up the River Corrib on the Corrib Princess. Considering it was either child’s first time on a boat, their reactions were underwhelming genuinely unexpected and surprising: Garrett Garrett spent the first ten minutes screaming “Wa-wa-wa-waterrrrrr!” while trying to […]

I picked this one, Jen

Two edits were performed: I cloned out dirt that was apparently on the lens. It was distracting. I cropped the image to a standard 10×8″ size. Okay, so I picked this photograph over your own favourite for a couple different reasons. Firstly, this image fits my personal sense of aesthetics: The backdrop is clean, you […]

Garrett and the Chocolate Cup

I brought home a hot chocolate (with frothy cream and marshmallows, thank you very much!) from town today… and Garrett went absolutely batshit about it. Candy in liquid form. It was completely hilarious to see him noisily slurp it down while moaning in pleasure, with the occasion exclaimed “Candy! Candyyyyyyy!” It was less fun afterwards […]


What? Saying “The twilight zone” is ridiculously trite at this point. Gmail’s new preview pane is miserably unusable on my netbook’s 1024×600 10″ screen: HAY GUYZ, could we possibly squeeze more crap onto the screen? I do feel my screen-size places me into the [[penumbra]] of Google services: I am too small to enjoy the […]

Caption this

…so, what happened next?

Cheese: Garrett

Monsters 1.0: Wolfman

I’m thinking aloud. This is a visual focus for me, courtesy of MAKE 8-BIT ART. A dapper wolfman with gold tooth in a sunny pasture. Discuss.

Monsters 1.1: Vampire and ghost

Once again this is courtesy of MAKE 8-BIT ART. Focus for a project in the works. :D

Monsters 1.2: Merman king

A third image courtesy of MAKE 8-BIT ART. A fey merman king glowers in a fey manner while wearing a fey golden crown.

Props 1.0: Weapons #1

Sword, double-bladed axe, dagger and recurve bow. Again, from MAKE 8-BIT ART. Move along.

Props 1.1: Weapons #2

Halberd, longbow and arrow.

Props 1.2: Weapons #3

A little more fantastical and exotic this time: Fiery sword, glass war hammer, obsidian dagger and kite shield bearing a personal insignia. This is all for now. I think I have enough to work with beyond a landscape scene or two.

It’s a double egg all the way across the pan?

What does it mean? I totally didn’t break the yolks. For once. Even with a double yolk.

A quiet snowscape

Last one. Scout’s honour. Dib dib dib.

(Caira’s) teeth -1

The tooth fairy…cometh! Garrett holds up the guilty corn cob: And yeah, my own half-missing front tooth (see here):

Everyone listen to this!

Help me give my shy friend unwanted attention by listening to this and/or favouriting them:

Access Google+ as an Apps user!

Kinda. Please put the pitchforks down and give me a second to explain. You cannot actually access Google+ as an Apps user, but you can access it without having to manually switch profiles or open up an incognito session of X or Y browser. Here is how: …that’s it, really. At least for me. […]

M…m…more photowalks

There will be three, approximately. Four if you count the Cliffony retreat of furious thunder… On October 1 I will be hosting a Worldwide Photowalk in Galway City, leading from Eyre Square to Massimo’s Pub over the course of a Saturday afternoon. This is already Set in Stone, and won’t see many updates on this […]

Caira in Merlin Woods

You emailed me, tweeted me and shared with me on Google+. I completely put you off (and off and off). But no more. I love the photograph of Caira. Her mom does too. Caira kinda shrugged and looked confused. Heh. Thank you for coming to the Merlin Park photowalk. I’m looking forward to seeing you […]

Well, shit

After a decade of denial, I turn out to be my father’s son after all.

Meet Slinker (or is it Stinker?)

Regardless of which, we’re adopting two gorgeous black kittens from Katie and Matthew of 091 Labs.

New home sweet home

Just some random images from Mariah’s iPhone for the time being. I’ll throw up some words about the house (and the photowalk!) later today. In short: It is gorgeous out here on the Sligo coast. Our neighbors came over and introduced themselves to us. I’m used to students or crackheads for neighbours, so it was […]


I’ve been pissing about with Instagram on Mariah’s iPhone for the past few days. Okay, so it has its perks and its pitfalls: Instagram’s iOS app is slick>. The complete lack of a native web interface feels like sand under my eyelid. So there’s this app that does all of the things I used to […]

The Littlest Browncoat

Gar! The man we call Gar!

So yeah, we went to the beach

An outing. As a family. A so-called “family outing” if you will. Caira collected a bunch of shells, Garrett did a fantastic slow-motion dive into a thistle patch while chasing sheep and Mariah muttered something about “contented” while we watched the sun sink into the North Atlantic ocean as a family. It was fun, really […]

Here I am, here I remain

I’m going to hold back my final judgement until I’ve sat through the first Atlantic winter storm and deep freeze (it hit fifteen below last year and water pipes burst nilly willy), but tentatively: I like it out here. There’s a lot to enjoy about being out in the middle of nowhere on Ireland’s Atlantic […]


I’m into day four of an epic headache. Disprin isn’t doing shit for it and I’m about to murder one or more of my children if they don’t find a recreational activity that doesn’t involve slamming into me repeatedly with a kitten held high in each hand. Garrett, I’m looking at you here. Your affection […]

A crazy ass-confession

Mariah is Californian, and uses a uniquely-Californian lexicon. One of her favourite stock phrases is: “[adjective]-ass [noun]”, i.e., “crazy-ass doll”, “stupid-ass bitch” or “expensive-ass car”. Sometimes, I mentally move the invisible hyphen one word to the right because “crazy ass-doll” makes for a far more entertaining mental image than “crazy-ass doll”. A doll-shaped ass? A […]

The Cliffoney photowalk of furious thunder, September 10-11

When: Saturday 10 and Sunday 11 September, 2011. Where: Cliffoney, Co. Sligo, Ireland. We are situated beside the N15 road right on the outskirts of Cliffoney as you approach the village from Sligo town. (54.428231,-8.458785) Cost: €10, payable by Monday September 5 2011. How do I reserve my place? Pay the deposit fee or let […]

Real fucking salsa

If there’s one thing I can owe to my wife Mariah, it is my perverse love of obscenely fucking hot pan-Mexican (Tex-Mex, Cali, etcetera, etcetera.) food. Good, hot salsa and corn chips is a particular favourite. Unfortunately all of the salsa sold in supermarkets here in Ireland is basically pisswater. Doritos “Hot” Salsa, I am […]

Suicide is never the fucking answer

Can we please all get on the same page as me about this? Suicide has tangentially and not-so-tangentially appeared in my life. I have had serious depressive bouts on and off over the last couple of years and in conjunction with ongoing stresses in my life, I found myself deeply suicidal in 2010. Two weeks […]

Successful parenting anecdote #143

14:45:45 Mariah Clanton Locked myself out had to toss Caira through a window lol

Cliffoney photowalk of furious thunder: The routes

Day Three huzzahs to Darren for running Caira and I around the the Dartry Mountains last night! The scramble up [[Benbulben]] almost did it in for my poor cheap shoes, but the view out south across Sligo and into Co. Mayo was definitely worth it. We visited/drove by a few spots, but it was the […]



Never ask me why.

G**d morning

Garrett woke up before 7. He lapped the room. He jumped on the beds. He lay down on my bed. He lay down on his mum’s. A strategic barrage of kittens completely failed to even slow his onslaught. At that point I conceded defeat and got out of bed. So. Today is [[Sunday]]. Sun’s Day. […]

The Cliffoney dining experience (of furious thunder)

This comes to us mere food mortals from the statuesque Olympian that is my wife: If there are any food allergies or requests please let me know in advance – I can easily prepare vegetarian, dairy or gluten free if needed. Accompanying this is a request for me to poll those of you who are […]

Access I.T. Sligo email in the client of your choice…

Before I talk about student life I need to do something for all of the other geeks coming into the school for the year who do not want to be tied to I.T. Sligo’s email client. Ten minutes of Googling, digging around in help files and copy-pasting rewarded me with this: POP Server:<br /> […]

i r student

As of yesterday, I am. A student that is. A card-carrying student, even. As with most of the other recent experiences in my life, this event can be seen as either profound, frightening, or fighteningly profound. Your outlook will, of course, depend on where you are on the positivity spectrum.

Three packs a week

If you’ve ever been around me for any length of time, you may have chanced to notice the utter disgust with which I treat smokers and smoking in general. You all deserve to die. Etcetera. Let’s move on before I turn this into a diatribe. I lead into the post with that because I experienced […]

Thunder. Fury. Photowalk. Cliffoney.

The much-hyped Cliffoney photowalk of furious thunder lived up to all of our expectations; everyone who made the drive out here in the face of the furious, thundery weather enjoyed a furiously thunderous weekend of photography and walking here in Cliffoney, County Sligo. Mariah and I are burnt out after a busy week of preparation […]

Who needs context?

There are times when it makes everything less fun.

Oh, hello!

For the future historical record, my name is Mark and I am currently undertaking course SG-137, BSc Computing in Systems and Networking, at I.T. Sligo in the selfsame-named town; this town happens to be in the selfsame-named county. As I write, I have just began first year of this exotic three-year course. It’s half-night on […]

Just had my first design class

It is Introduction to Digital Media Design with Colm Davey. The course is structured as a gentle introduction to Adobe Photoshop, design principles and (I think?) critical art assessment. The course isn’t intended to be at all in-depth for Systems people. Instead we’re just there to get a feel for what is involved in designing […]

Garrett’s birthday is off to a great start

me: How is the birthday boy doing? Mariah: garrett says, and this is a direct quote: ballsballsparty?NOWBALLSBALLSNOWNOWPARTYPARTY :wail: while ramming the wardrobe

The great forking

Several of this semester’s modules include a requirement that we keep a personal development blogs, log or diary. I already have a blog, but I (Mariah) don’t (doesn’t) consider it appropriate to mix up my personal posts in this, so I am forking all school-related material to School Hatred, found at That is all. […]

The Scott Kelby photowalk of cascading rain, October 1

When? Saturday 1 October, 2011 from 2pm to 5pm. Where? The fountain, Eyre Square/Kennedy Park, Galway City, Ireland. 53.274716,-9.049387` for those of you navigating by GPS. Cost? Gratis! Free as in beer. How do I reserve my place? You sign up at the official photowalk page on the Worldwide Photowalk website. What should I bring? […]

Happy birthday Garrett!


The first around that I did this level of math (secondary school), I didn’t learn a damn thing. Ann Lucy is one of the sweetest women imaginable, but she was completely incapable of managing a class of eighteen teenagers who weren’t particularly inclined toward learning. Even on the days when I did tune in, and […]

Ubuntu causes girl to drop out of college

Abbie Schubert is a bimbo who dropped out of college because she ordered a Dell laptop with Ubuntu Linux (no, really), and didn’t know how to use it. Take a moment to watch that video and enjoy some painful laughter at her expense, given that all she had to do was ask for help. Between […]

Mr. @artyeva engineered a fence

I can’t even say “built” or “erected” due to the double plus sturdiness of this construct. No, “engineered” is indeed the correct word. All for the tidy sum of twenty five euros, brownies, cake, pizza and one of Mariah’s secret recipes.

This is all your damn fault, Katie

They want my bloooooooooooooooooood. Really. They followed me around the house for two hours this morning screeching to be picked up and loved on. It’s getting (cutely) annoying.

Garret’s second birthday

Garrett turned two last Thursday, although we deferred his party until Saturday so my family could come up to Galway to eat our food and use our wate…join in to the joyous celebrations of my son’s birth. And yeah, I had school during the week too. It was a fun day. While Mariah and Caira […]

Busy busy

Where did my life of languid indolence go? The whole week has been busy between school and wrestling with the kids at home. Travelled to Dublin yesterday to purchase a good-as-new iPad (it rocks). Spent the whole time on the train catching up with college work, and, truth be told, giving myself a crash course […]

Good luck, Liam!

Jen and Josh’s son (the one on the right) is undergoing surgery today to fit tubes to his ear. Best of luck to all concerned.

iPad +1

I blogged about this on The Other Site, but it is oh-so-worth repeating here: I have has iPad. /gloat I guess a user review is in order? Teh Suq The virtual keyboards (landscape and portrait) on the iPad suck if you are in any way a good typist. Sure, I can Google search, Tweet, instant […]

My family is totally normal (no, really)

Apologies for any eye-watering hairy bare legedness. We are oh-so totally normal in this family. Totally normal…


So that five hundred word piece I wrote into my lab book – by hand – on the Dell OptiPlex GX620? Wrong computer. It was supposed to be the GX260. Shut up.

Cuppa tae?

Woo, pseudo-code! #!/bin/sh KETTLEMAXIMUM=1000ml CUPMAXIMUM=50ml CUP50%=25ml CUP75%=37.50ml locate kettle if [water level in kettle do   bring kettle to water tap   turn on water tap   place kettle into stream   fill kettle to $KETTLEMAXIMUM   turn off water tap   place kettle on base elseif [kettle >=$KETTLEMAXIMUM]   place kettle on base fi […]

I quit Solomon’s Boneyard

One hundred thousand kills in a game…and half a million gold sitting in the kitty. Roll on the coming multiplayer.


Okay, I’ve been giving this matter some thought. Here I go: I’m getting rid of my Netbook. I am going to sell off my spare PC kit, my Netbook, those few other worldly possessions that I still lay claim to. The iPad has perfectly superseded my Netbook at the exact tasks I used it for; […]

School Hatred…no more!

Certain unnamed parties rightly gave me grief about the whole downward slope of the last name, so I’ve renamed it to Sibilat Magno Strepitu, “Loud Hissing Noise”. I mean, it sounds fancy…and we all know that presentation is everything.

Three confusions for the price of one

I own a (to get specific) 2GB Kingston DataTraveler I USB 2.0 Flash Drive, purchased (again, to be specific, as I’m going somewhere with this) from Frys of Las Vegas, U.S.A. somewhere in or around February or March 2008. Between then and now, the pen drive has done its job admirably: Stored files and ran […]

My First Photoshop assignment: Complete

(Hopefully) I won’t fail our Photoshop class; I’ve spent enough years working the program. This fix took me about 90 minutes. It was interesting to me for a few reasons: This was a technically challenging task. During the ordinary course of a shoot I take great care to stage/pose the scene so I can minimize […]


Since August I have twice been invited by Social Welfare to present myself at a local FAS training centre for a mandatory training course. Curious about this, and the lack of correspondence about my Back to Education Allowance, I spoke to a very helpful lady in the Sligo office. Turns out that they lost my […]


slowpain ≠ slickeasy

I have a functioning Linux installation on my laptop – Fedora Core 15 as it happens. Compared to the slickeasy process of setting up Ubuntu, getting Fedora Core to the same point in usability has been very slowpain. While using any non-Ubuntu distro while in the mindset of a vanilla Linux home user, I’m always […]


Who am I? I am Mark, son of Francis and Mary, sibling of Frank and Jennifer, husband of Mariah, and father of Caira and Garrett. I am agreeably introverted, mildly misanthropic, aggravatingly sarcastic and undeniably a know-it-all. I’m an avid reader and passionate geek. I’m a member of the superior left-handed minority of the population. […]

Maths: 20% done.

I got about halfway through the paper before the time ran out. I didn’t make a complete shite of matters, but I already know that I am way behind on the class on topics such as factorization and quadratic equations.

Garrett’s birthday cake

For Clan Clanton.

Have someone following me on Twitter

Their bio: I’m a child with stars in my eyes, love in my heart and photography in my blood. My hand to god, I thought it read “I’m a child with blood in my eyes” in the week before I bothered to click into their profile.

Best worst nap wake-up call ever

Caira was running around the house at something like quarter of light speed, to judge by the volume of her wailing and copious blood loss. Doofus. Yes, daddy will always love you, even if I sometimes smirk when you have a nose bleed.

Back with Ubunutu

I obliterated the Fedora Core installation and went back to running with Mint. Fedora just pissed me off endlessly; I guess that I am still carrying a chip on my shoulder from the days of truly fucking nightmare dependency issues when installing packages, but it just didn’t click with me. Fedora drowned me in its […]

Oh, ouch

Updated 00:40 October 8: I have my Stanza library backed up into a folder on my desktop. I’ll do a mass upload to ‘txtr on Monday. I updated my iPad to iOS 5. Stanza, an app that I completely rely upon , crashed and crashed hard after the update. Stanza ate my entire book collection […]

<3 LaTeX <3

A fair portion of my supposedly study-oriented weekend was spent in the recovery of ebooks deleted in an iOS update gone wrong, and the ongoing hunt for a worthy ePub reader for my iPad. Besides my iPad, I have spent most of today (Sunday) in the company of an old friend, that most excellent of […]

I wrote a script

I win. /* * Description: This is a simple program to collate three match scores and then average the total. * Author: Mark Grealish ( * Date: 10/10/2011 */ using System; using System.Collections.Generic; using System.Linq; using System.Text; namespace prac1QV5  {    class Program    {      static void Main(string[] args)      {       int score0, […]

Goobye ‘txtr, hello iBook

‘txtr isn’t all that bad of an ebook service, but it just didn’t work out for me. It has a lovely barebones interface, a great web-device connectivity and plain gorgeous ePub rendering compared to Stanza’s. Unfortunately: The ‘txtr website fails when I try to upload any PDF or ePub document bigger than about 20MB. It […]

I’ve been researching Digital Rights Management all day…

I have learned that: Opponents of Digital Rights Management are as numerous as the stars. They are only occasionally well-spoken, but what they lack in eloquence they make up for with their Zerg-like numbers and unquenchable zealotry. Supporters of Digital Rights Management have entirely written off the Internet as a forum for meaningful communication, due […]

I’m in your seminar, learning to listen.

I want to apologize in advance to all of Tuesday’s speakers; I’m piss-poor with names and so I made no effort whatsoever to remember yours. About two hundred people from the I.T. were bussed down a country hotel on Tuesday for a symposium training all of this year’s new class representatives. Our host, Castle Dargan, […]

Party. My place.

I got a credit card. I used it to pay for Mariah’s end of season escape to Blackpool in England. Herself and the kids will be gone for five days from Thursday. So. Party. My place. BYO. Who’s up? Who’s in? Who’s down for this?

Random interlude: The metrics of an exam result

We had our first random Photoshop exam last week. We received our results yesterday (Sunday). For lack of anything better to do before I have food in my belly, I’ll break down the metrics: Limitations: Our aggregate score was based on two differently-weighted components – the theory and the practical. I am just looking at […]

The worst part of this whole “college” thing?

Having to go into class on those days when I feel like shit and just want to go crawl away into a hole somewhere. Like today.

Look again, I’m on a bus

Caira and I are on the bus to Galway for the guaranteed-to-be-awesome Scott Kelby Photowalk of Cascading Rain. Just as the Cliffoney Photowalk of Furious Thunder wound up being held during our battering by the dregs of Hurricane Katia, today’s weather forecast for Gaway is for rain rain rain. If this kind of correspondence keeps […]

Undocumented Applications

I have absolutely nothing against Windows and Microsoft. I toast them every bit of deserved success in the desktop arena. But Windows on the desktop just isn’t for me; Linux has always offered me the perfect user experience on the desktop because it allows me to tweak, fiddle and change almost every damn thing. Want […]

Mono == C#

…but that won’t stop me from gloating about my first programming written entirely with Mono and Monodevelop: /gloat using System; namespace wageCalc {      class MainClass      {        public static void Main (string[] args)        {              Console.WriteLine (“Welcome to wageCalc v1.0. All support queries and emails should go to:nntMark Grealish (”);              Console.WriteLine […]

Pee Cee of Olde, Arise from Thy Grave

I’m building a new-old computer from parts to sell. An older vintage of factory-new parts. Make sense? My biggest stumbling block in its construction has been the motherboard’s BIOS. It unfortunately doesn’t support booting via USB. And, well…let us timeline this motherfucker. Mark’s computer-for-sale does not support booting from USB. Thursday ---> Try a different […]

Resorting to the nuclear solution is getting old

Fuck, it works, but I’d have thought that more computer know-how would somehow let me finesse my solutions a bit more. As opposed to, you know, fucking beating them with a hammer. So, the PC I’m constructing and the problem I had getting an operating system onto it. I did wind up travelling into Sligo, […]

I need to turn up to class more…

Something something I may fail one or more classes because I miss lectures.

Semester Photoshop project: Selected

It’s a bigger-budget version of the above. I’ll whip it up during the Halloween break.


This is why I will fail school: (The original was stolen from here)


The Spice should flow to all the people, and not the Great Houses alone.

#occupyvycanismajoris (v2.0)

I did a better job. I snagged some shots of the sun from NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory AIA image browser and used it to represent VY Canis Majoris. I’m pretty use that using the sun to represent VY Canis Majoris in a representation of VY Canis Majoris opposing the sun is rich in weird metaphor. […]

#occupyvycanismajoris (v3.0)

Best of both worlds. I took the legibility fixes and removed the picture of the sun. Simple. A statement of facts and a hashtag for information.

#occupyvycanismajoris (v5.0)

Author’s note: I went from 3.0 to 4.0 last night making tweaks to the scene before I scrapped it all and jumped to 5.0. [[Eurostile]]. Fantastic font, really. Used everywhere. People even write love letters to it. Let’s compare Eurostile to Impact, the so-called [[Tautology_(rhetoric|tautological]] font. Impact has…impact. Impact impacts you. Impact is the triumphant […]

I like churches

I say this as a man who is legally irreligious: I like churches to the point that I’d almost call it love. These buildings are places where a community assembles to feel a part of something greater and more lasting than themselves. And – setting aside all of the iconography of whatever religion it is […]

[Solved] Riddle me stupid

Update November 2: I raised my problem with Domhall last night during the deconstruction of my laptop. Domhall posited that the problem might simply because by one of the WiFi repeaters in the school library having blacklisted my wireless adapter’s MAC address. He then went on to show me how I can replace the Mini […]


Hello, world!

If can read this post, then Self-hatred has successfully moved from Digiweb to its new home at Blacknight. Rejoice, friends!

Something just struck me

In The Book of the New Sun one of the challenges that Severian the Torturer faces are alien animals that feed on body heat. They are described by Gene Wolfe as being flitting black wisps of matter that attack the face so they can crawl inside your mouth, to more easily get into your body:

The “thank you” post

A lot of great people helped me out in Galway in the past two days. In order: Domhall Walsh walked me through the steps of disassembling my Acer netbook and servicing the components at two o’clock this morning. We identified upgrade and replacement paths for components and fixed the loose screen hinge. It was an […]

Is the whole #occupy movement hypocritical?

I posted this last night on G+, but G+ is G+. I want a larger audience to see this, so I am reposting it here. I’ve made some slight edits to this version for clarity. Is the #occupy Movement Hypocritical? I’m sitting here in Galway, above Eyre Square, and waiting for a large transfer between […]

#jesus saved

You should too.

Semester: Half over

I’ve neglected this blog bit in the past two weeks, sorry. The first semester of my first year in my first college (13?) is half-finished. Contrary to my preliminary expectations of school, I’m doing fantastically: I (so-far :) haven’t failed. I expected to drop out weeping and tearing at my breast in the very first […]

First school report: DRM

Thanks to @jschneider for her help in preparing this report: Digital Rights Management: In your Electrons, Controlling your Bits This report was written between 11pm and 4am on the night before it was due. The report was rewritten between 9am and 11am on the day that the report was due. The quality reflects my haste. […]

What is this “work” of which you speak?

Nice: One thousand posts

Party at my place.

Hey @quiddityingot

You used to nag me on a daily basis to blog more frequently and more verbosely. Sometimes you’d nag on an hourly one, too. I have the emails. But oh my, how the tide has turned! I’m officially launching a three pronged campaign of concerted guilt tripping Facebook, email and Twitter. I don’t care if […]

@quiddityingot Even the Chinese want you to blog more

Dare to think, dare to act, dare to write!


I think I can edit the blurb to fit Joss Wheadon (omg <3) in there somehow. The project brief called for a fair amount of advanced beginner Photoshop to be used, but I settled for some good typography and tasteful presentation. I’ll post a full defense of my piece in the morning. Now…I sleep!

.@e_eric @sineadw I have some great slogans, but no font

I’m borrowing liberally from vintage airline and travel posters for my visuals, but for the life of me I just cannot imagine what font the Spacing Guild would use. Any suggestions?

Combine Honnete Ober Advancer Mercantiles

“Few products escape the CHOAM touch … Logs, donkeys, horses, cows, lumber, dung, sharks, whale fur — the most prosaic and the most exotic … even our poor pundi rice from Caladan. Anything the Guild will transport, the art forms of Ecaz, the machines of Richese and Ix. But all fades before melange. A handful […]

Visit Giedi Prime!

Sure the planet is a hub of industry, but I think even a Guild (or CHOAM!) artist would be hard-pressed to do anything but make the damn place look smoky and mysterious. If it is hard to discern any detail from the filter, sorry – the entire point is that Barony is obscured by industrial […]

Giedi Prime v2.0

Increased legibility and a logo in keeping with the first poster in this series. I really like both versions, however.


Bulshytt: (1) In Fluccish of the late Praxic Age and early Reconstitution, a derogatory term for false speech in general, esp. knowing and deliberate falsehood or obfuscation. (2) In Orth, a more technical and clinical term denoting speech (typically but not necessarily commercial or political) that employs euphemism, convenient vagueness, numbing repetition, and other such […]

Caladan: The Emerald of Delta Pavonis

Contrast this to Giedi Prime: You’re up high in the hills, looking down on an unspoilt coastal plain and dhows out on the sea beyond it. Caladan has been done before. I wanted something that wasn’t a rehash. Everything screams serenity. Peace. The colour scheme is all cool, soothing colours. Earthy tones. I tried a […]

Caladan. Improved.

Can we all please forget about the other one? Please? A big part of the Atreides family culture is la corrida. A common rite of passage is to step into the ring and defeat a Salusan bull (…or not. A bull is what killed the Old Duke). I figured this would be more of selling […]

Yogi the Bear Poster: From Sketch to Finish

I printed off the final Yogi poster today. It looks great. All my five hours of back-breaking hard work paid off tenfold. The printer in the Lab really can’t handle blacks or deep shadows, but thankfully the only area of the image so affected is a small portion of the bottom left-hand corner. So here, […]

Fixed the search box

Sorry. /embarrassed

Today’s my dad’s eighth anniversary

I’ve already said everything I’m going to say about him: …this stems, I guess, from my dad. Other than as (earlier) a raging, drunken figure full of violence, and (later) a broken, sick man slumped on the couch, I don’t know really him. I can tell you his name, age at death, date of birth, […]

My evening’s super, thanks for asking.

Caladan v2.0 sketch

Compare: I dropped the Atreides banner because I want this CHOAM/Guild campaign to be decidedly apolitical. Fact: The scanners in school are f-u-n.

The Dimensions of a Heighliner

Dune (1965) The Spacing Guild Heighliner in Dune is one of the more iconic starships in science fiction. Helighliners serve as means of transportation, fulcrums for events and convenient plot devices throughout the books of the series. In the first novel, they were described as being of such gargantuan size that Duke Paul Atreides says: […]

Garrett is sick

Or so this Instragram tells me. :(

House Atreides

This post was edited on my iPad (dun dun dunnnnn!) I went through a few versions of this banner on paper, and I’ll honestly say that some of the masking was a complete pain in the arse. I drew this banner tonight after I put off my much more complex Ix project; the Ix picture […]

I sprained my wrist.

I did it while writing a school report. Shut up.

Programming assignment: Done

And now I should probably tackle the festering abscess that is my Systems backlog.


I am a helpless romantic. I see our world through kaleidoscopically-tinted glasses. It’s the inevitable result of being an introvert whose nose spends every free moment buried in a novel. I’m biding my time until Caira settles down enough that I can ambush her classic children’s books like The Hobbit and Goodnight Dune. The above, […]

Ix: The City of Ten Thousand Lights

If there’s anywhere in the Imperium that is all gleaming skyscrapers surrounding wide civic plazas, it is the subterranean city of Ix. Ninth planet of Rodale and capital of the Ixian Confederation, the colony of Ix was founded by scientist fleeing the Butlerian Jihad, and with the explicit protection of the Spacing Guild during its […]

No power cord? No problem!

I badly needed to move some data from my laptop’s hard disk to my external storage. However, the power cord for the disk frayed through. No problem! I dismantled the MyBook enclosure and popped the SATA disk into this wonderful bit of technology. Hallelujah!

Meditating on Death

I live in a rational universe. This rational universe is a universe that hums along nicely to a set of celestial gearworks. To help you understand it, I’ll repeat the old joke: Physics is applied math, chemistry is applied physics, biology is applied chemistry, sociology is applied biology and religion is applied sociology. That’s my […]

I’m impressed

That one – one! – little cat with only three – three! – good legs can stick herself to my shoulder within thirty – thirty! – seconds of me sitting down:

I’m feeling whimsical.

I’ll change it back tomorrow. Thank you, O spam algorithm.

Ix: From sketch to award-winning masterpiece


I’m using a fire, among the oldest of human technologies (say a good half million years?) while I upload files to my wife’s website using the Internet, one of our most recent (20 years).

Let me see

I started on a new Cymbalta prescription yesterday. I got home at 7pm, started dinner, sat down on the couch for a minute and woke up at 5am. Ouch. I’m just glad I was only chopping vegetables and had nothing turned on, because I would have likely burned the house down. I have another two […]

…and by day she eats lettuce

Uh, okay

I found out this morning from another student that our Photoshop lecturer was displaying my Yogi poster in class as an example of How To Do It Right. Oh, oh how I squirmed. I have nothing at all against this! Heck, my ego is stoked. I just don’t like being put in the limelight at […]

Extradimensional Cat mocks your laws of physics

200% of the cat in a volume intended for 75% of the cat. Impressive.

1950’s vintage @091labs

I gave the mailing list and blog personal alone time with the poster. Feedback has been excellent. I reused the template from the Realist Mermaid poster because it seemed to fit exactly what I wanted, without me having to go out and reinvent the bloody wheel from scratch. I really went out of my way […]

Why a television show and an ICBM are the same thing

I’ll open this up with a disclaimer: I am a nitpicky geek. /disclaimer Producing a television show, weirdly, has a lot in common with designing a ballistic missile. In the minds of every missile designer exists the perfect missile. This perfect ballistic munition can carry an infinitely large warhead, at an infinite speed, over an […]

Craptastic awesome!

I had a letter in the mail this morning inviting me to an interview to discuss my attendance record for the semester to date. I’m not sue what I’ll say. Argue depression, boredom and interest? Watch this space.


School presentation +1.

I got my DRM report back…

9/10 for relevance of content. “Relevant content included”. 4/5 for presentation. “Very well laid out and excellent referencing”. 4/5 for expression and grammar. “Very well written”. 9/10 for clarity and inclusion of headings. “All headings included with relevant material”. 9/10 for bibliography. “Excellent bibliography”. You can find the report here.

It isn’t the queerest logic I’ve seen

if He is (unshaven/bearded/unkempt) He is [wearing] (a hoodie) He is [using] (Linux) He is [typing] [furiously] then he is a guru; and [ask] him for (computer/photoshop/life) advice fi Welcome to the next three years of my school life. -_- I mean, today I’ve been asked for advice on changing course, on Photoshop, on how […]

Well the meeting wasn’t what I expected

It wasn’t a dressing down. I spent the weekend mentally bracing myself for just this. The biggest thing that came across in the interview meeting was concern that I am not falling behind. The complaint about attendance came from my programming lecturer. We had a good chat about being back in school and my interests, […]

Presentation: Done. Lab book: Handed in.

I have nothing left to do until January but revise, revise, revise! /face_sunglasses

For @realistmermaid

I wanted to keep the original as much as possible, sorry – I just couldn’t fit in anything longer. If you want fancier, you can try here or grab the .PSD/vector when I upload it tomorrow.

Lifetime Achievement: Nonplusser

I really am a master of leaving a person nonplussed. Today alone I left several classmates and a teacher utterly befuddled. /flex

“Keep Calm and Carry On” Photoshop template You’ll need to download and install this font from K-Type in order to make use of the template. Enjoy! :)


What is @091labs coming to?

Bloody disgraceful, if you ask me!

HOWTO: A jolly good fire

Mariah selfishly taking off back home to America has seen me left to fend for myself. I mean, it was a full week before I realized that the fridge didn’t miraculously replenish itself when it was emptied of produce, and I’m still getting the hang of laundry a month later. Turns out that after all […]

Labyrinthus: The Poster

Very much inspired by 70’s Eastern European science fiction films.


My word of the day: I have a math’s exam in fifty minutes that I’m not ready for. Oh sure, I’ve revised. I intellectually ready for the challenge of my sets I am. I am not, however, physically ready. All I want to do right now is crawl away home, curl up in bed with […]

I passed everything

I’ve been tweeting about this all afternoon, so apologies to anyone reading this post and thinks I’m tooting my own horn. Okay okay, I am tooting my own horn. Just not redundantly so. For this is the For Eternal Posterity post. I am pleasantly shocked that I passed everything. On the intellectual level, I’m not […]

I used to be an adventuer like you…

Help me out here

I’ve been hawking this around on Twitter. There are going to be more parts. Anyone not Las Vegas local want to suggest Las Vegas local scenery for me to poorly draw?

I’m in Galway

I’m infamous for my well-fuck-it-why-not? impulsiveness. I got out of bed at 4am yesterday morning and decided I was going to Galway, story, end of. Here I am now, legs up in 091 Labs and listening to some #occupyGalway twit shitting out of his mouth and into a megaphone. Really, guys? It’s the Week Before […]

echo “Hello, world!”

I am doing some house cleaning and catch-up work with this blog while I procrastinate over my real home work. I had to hold a short presentation at school earlier in this semester, and with a free choice of topic allowed, I picked Linux. When I created this presentation I the notion of being able […]

Oh my

It isn’t very often that I feel like I’m better off than someone else, but fuck me, the guy who sat behind me on the Galway bus tonight takes the entire fucking packet of biscuits. Married at 19 (knocked his girlfriend up). Had 5 kids with her before they split. Had 2 more girlfriends. And […]

Incremental cat

Worth a mention. I’m sure who she belongs to, exactly. She’s friendly, vocal and loves her food. She pops up at the back door every couple of days making kitten eyes at me until I feed her.

Hell hath no fury like a geek thwarted

I will have this app on my phone. Update: Got it. Took me about an hour.

Sold the iPad; bought an Android phone

Day and night. Day and fucking night. One of the biggest killers for me about living out in Cliffony has been the lack of reliable Internet access. I had an O2 HotShot dongle, but O2’s 3G coverage seems to end somewhere around Galway. Since I moved out to County Sligo in August I’ve been stuck […]

HOWTO: Easy full-page images in LaTeX

The was the most useful thing I leaned all semester. If you want to have a full-page borderless image in a LaTeX document you have two real choices: You can go down the path of defining a custom box within the document, and wrestle with the specifics of setting this box, and filling it with […]

The top 5 pros and cons of living alone

Pros: I can leave the towel on the bathroom floor. There’s nobody around to critique my totally radical air guitar. The toilet seat stays up. Mark only washes the dishes when Mark wants to wash the dishes. My circadian rhythm is migrating West. I’m currently on New York time. Cons: I go to visit family […]

Came home to one less cat. Other cat is making up for it.

I came home from Galway last night to find Lucy completely hysterical and Nyx missing. I feel really, really fucking terrible about Nyx being gone, but as of right now I am not too worried. I’ve searched the roadsides a mile on either side of the house – and there’s no dead cat or any […]

My precioussssss….

Thank you Mariah for putting Garrett on last night! He melted my heart. He’s been sick, but he made up for it by demanding hugs, impersonating Gollum and telling me what every member of the Fellowship of the Ring ate at any given point in the story. His photographic recall was awesome.

Revision isn’t doing so bad…

I brushed up on my Programming last night, and I’m one-third of the way through my Systems (I’ve finished RAM and I’ve nodded my head at CPU). I don’t really want read back up on mobos and expansion slots, but it’s my first exam on Friday coming. Life is pain. I don’t have any exceptional […]

This video is everything my new year’s eve isn’t

And honestly, I’m happier having twenty kilometres of raw Irish countryside between and them kind. Actually… ADVENTURE TIME MARATHON. WOO!!!!