Jan Joris

Work in progress.

Lately, our house has been giving us headaches because the masonry is beginning to fall apart, literally. The crack in the first picture (not unlike the MD5 crack from yesterday's entry, now I come to think of it) is actually from a neighbor's house, but it is representative of the overall state of our stonework.

So, we hired two builders. First they use power tools to cut out whatever mortar is left---and they hardly need to plug in those tools, as the mortar is so loose they might as well brush it out. When done, they put in new mortar.

It's "only" a three week job for two people they estimated, and it appears they're right. I dare not tell you how much it's going to cost us, lest you make fun of how much we overpaid when we bought the house...

Anyway. Hoping to post shiny happy pictures of our house looking brand-new again soon.
Jan Joris


meneerleeuw% ls -l file1.dat file2.dat
-rw-rw-r--    1 janjoris users         128 Aug 19 22:09 file1.dat
-rw-rw-r--    1 janjoris users         128 Aug 19 22:09 file2.dat
meneerleeuw% hexdump file1.dat
0000000 31d1 02dd e6c5 c4ee 3d69 069a af98 5cf9
0000010 ca2f 87b5 4612 ab7e 0440 3e58 fbb8 897f
0000020 ad55 0634 f409 02b3 e483 8388 7125 5a41
0000030 5108 e825 cdf7 9fc9 1dd9 f2bd 3780 5b3c
0000040 0b96 d11d 41dc 9c7b d8e4 f497 655a d555
0000050 7335 c79a ebf0 0cfd 2930 66f1 09d1 8fb1
0000060 2775 797f d530 eb5c e822 baad cc79 5c15
0000070 74ed ddcb c55f 6dd3 9bb1 d80a cc35 e3a7
meneerleeuw% hexdump file2.dat
0000000 31d1 02dd e6c5 c4ee 3d69 069a af98 5cf9
0000010 ca2f 07b5 4612 ab7e 0440 3e58 fbb8 897f
0000020 ad55 0634 f409 02b3 e483 8388 f125 5a41
0000030 5108 e825 cdf7 9fc9 1dd9 72bd 3780 5b3c
0000040 0b96 d11d 41dc 9c7b d8e4 f497 655a d555
0000050 7335 479a ebf0 0cfd 2930 66f1 09d1 8fb1
0000060 2775 797f d530 eb5c e822 baad 4c79 5c15
0000070 74ed ddcb c55f 6dd3 9bb1 580a cc35 e3a7
meneerleeuw% cmp file1.dat file2.dat
file1.dat file2.dat differ: char 20, line 1
meneerleeuw% md5sum file1.dat file2.dat
a4c0d35c95a63a805915367dcfe6b751  file1.dat
a4c0d35c95a63a805915367dcfe6b751  file2.dat

Source: Collisions for Hash Functions MD4, MD5, HAVAL-128 and RIPEMD.
Jan Joris


I hadn't told you yet---Quarta became Kees some time ago. I was waiting for a good story, you see. Next time, I'll know better than to wish for a good story.

A few days ago Kees suddenly started vomitting. That's nothing to worry about, Gijs did it once after he overate. But Kees didn't once, she did it a dozen times. Then, she started screaming when she went to the litter box. And kept going, and kept screaming, while not being able to do her business there. Not good. Very, very ungood. Outright alarming. This had "serious trouble" written all over it.

Well, so thought the vet. Although the X-rays didn't show much, he was still concerned about an intestinal blockage, maybe due to some swallowed object. He advised surgery, and that was what she got.

Look at that giant cut on her belly! Poor kitty!

Kees's people called me when I was downtown, eating out with my dad. At that moment there was a distinct possibility that she wouldn't see the day out, so they felt they had to inform me. Let me tell you: if all my downtown diners would proceed that way, I'd be at my ideal weight quite quickly.

Surgery. The vet couldn't find anything, so he closed her again, and put her on IV (antibiotics? fluids? magic potion?). Whatever it was, it worked, and she seems to be recuperating nicely now. It's still unclear what it was that she caught, but the vet's best guess is some bacterial infection. We'll see how she fares from here, not sure if she's out of the woods yet, but since the vet sent her home again (after 24 hours in the cat hospital) I have good hopes.


It's not that I want to be unkind to the people of Donna and Max, but at least Kees's people have impressively passed their first "Did we really, really, really pick the right people for our kittens???"-exam. Congrats & thanks!!!
Jan Joris

Donna gone.

A week ago to the day, Donna left. Since she moved to our direct neighbors, I'll be seeing her daily, so losing this one didn't hurt as much as the previous ones. Still I cried.

Donna's new people already have three big toms and a big dog. Last I heard, Donna was giving all four hell! She's growling at the toms so much that they've left the house---which I can confirm, since they're hiding out in our front garden. The dog she even seems to have bitten. Thank God it's a very kind, very old dog, otherwise she might have bitten Donna in two. Well, so much for our worries that she wouldn't be able to stand up against her new house mates.
Jan Joris

Give 'm hell!

OK, the final version of the X.Org conversion patch has hit the tree.
No ports appear to be broken by the upgrade at this time. X.Org has
been made the default X distribution on -current. Other versions of
FreeBSD retain the same default X distribution (XFree86) but can upgrade
by setting X_WINDOW_SYSTEM=xorg in /etc/make.conf.
Yes! Give 'm hell! That'll teach 'em to switch licences on us! Apache fork, anyone?

RMS was right all along...

[Those finding this entry to be a bit cryptic or otherwise merely monomaniacal, please keep in mind that after 12 weeks of continual cat blogging, I have to regain some street credibility with my fellow-Asperger nerd friends.]
Jan Joris


Tijgertje (Dutch diminutive of "Tiger") arrived today. He's my brother and sister-in-law's cat. Unfortunately---how shall we put this?---he wasn't quite the natural match with their dual-career, dual noisy-kid household. He's a rather shy creature, and might benefit from a less lonely and more quiet house. Originally he was sheduled to arrive in May, but just before he'd be arriving, Lies & litter cut that plan short nicely.

Three months late, he's here now. Tieleke gave him a nice brush, which he seemed to like. Then, he fled behind the fridge. I cut off all power there, and am waiting for him to reappear. Three types of cat treats are waiting for him when he does.


Nine hours later now, he's still hiding there. Hasn't used the litter box, hasn't eaten. Cat treats do not impress him, continual loud complaints are no problem though.

Tips, anyone...?
Jan Joris

Max at home.

Max's new people report he's safely asleep, after loudly protesting during his drive home. He must be feeling at home too, I guess, as he's purring already.

Speaking of which: all of Lies's kittens are reported to be great purrers by their new people.

Would that be:

A) Genetical?
B) Because we raised them so well?
C) Because their new people treat them so well?

I go with "all of the above"!
Jan Joris


Tertius is now called Max. His new people picked him up this morning.

Max is undoubtedly the most handsome of all Lies's kittens. He's also the shyest by far; I'm glad he's going to lead a quiet indoor life. If he'd be going to live a among three agressive tomcats---like Donna is---I'd be very, very worried.

But I'm not. Max has the quiet, attentive, loving new people he deserves. Of all people picking up one of our kittens, they're the only ones that don't have cats already. At first, I felt this was a serious disadvantage---do I want to send my kitten to people that might not know how to handle him? But as I talked with them over the past months---especially with Max's new father, whom I meet daily at work---I became impressed by their commitment, dedication, and eagerness. One day I gave them a surplus kitten booklet of ours, to make sure they got their "Kittens 101" straight. To my bewilderement Max's new father had learned it by heart the next day!

Also, I remembered that some five years ago someone else was trusting me with two of his kittens (Piet and Juul). That leap of faith was quite a bit bigger: back then, Tieleke and I were hardly prepared for kittens. I still shiver when I realize that we'd lost the kittens within minutes of getting them, and when thinking back to that time they almost fell out of the window on the fourth floor. Brrr... If we made it, Max's new people certainly can.

Nevertheless, I again cried. As Tieleke said: we've witnessed him being born into this world, so it's not easy letting go. I'm thankful though that I'll be hearing stories of his adventures daily at work. If that's not a good motivator to try and be in those silly meetings on time, I don't know what is!
Jan Joris

Quarta feeling at home in new home.

Quarta's new people report she's sleeping cosily, and that their old cat hasn't been too bad to her. She doesn't have name yet.

The email was sent at 01:38 this morning, which made me smile: although I'd take Quarta back any moment, at least we were sound asleep at that moment---and that was quite attractive for a change.
Jan Joris

Then there were three.

Today was the day Quarta moved to her new people. I tried to be clownish about it, but actually it was more of a sinking feeling. The expression on Tieleke face is more honest.

Her new people were very glad that they could take their kitty home. They've visited Quarta almost weekly over the past months, and are clearly in love with her. Quarta is so at home with them that by now that she falls asleep in their arms.

Then, they put Quarta in their basket, and left. I managed not to cry till I had the front door fully closed.