After work today, I swung by the cluster, and found that the cat-ness that I exude (my cats love sleeping on my computers, my computer bag, etc, and it's hard to get the fur off of anything I own) was creating allergy problems for Shawn. I felt bad about it and left before too long, but as I was heading out, we were all starting a conversation on the theoretical difference (if any) between acceptability of smoking, having cats, and other things that can make problems between people - it seems among people I know a fair number are strongly anti-smoking and another fair number are pro smoking rights (whether they smoke or not). I personally have no position on the issue of smoking in public spaces, but I find listening to such discussions interesting. The key issue is, given that some people are allergic to cat dander (and some people are *really* allergic), is having it about one's person substantially similar to smoking in enough ways that society should treat it the same way (quite apart from the specifics of how it actually is handled)..
On a personal note, the cat dander (and hair) actually bothers me a lot, as do other details of cat ownership. I like my cats, and it's great having my own little family here, but if/when they leave my posession through death or necessary/useful passing on to another person, I probably won't seek more cats in the future - I am pretty tired of spending so much time trying to broom cat hair off the floor and scrape it off of my clothes/bed and finding that they've replaced it two days later.
One of the things that struck me as odd was the manner people approached the question - almost as if there were some unspoken set of rules or justifications that people must use to have an opinion on these things. I'll grant that that style of thought is often appropriate for governmental questions, but for this particular matter, I think it comes down to a simple decision on what should be tolerated, a decision that's necessarily arbitrary on some level, and all one can effectively have is a vote (or some other type of by-fiat rather than by-reasoning decision - note that votes are essentially unreasoned, which makes framing votes and institutions so roles within them rather than their basic role are what normally happens a pretty important thing).
Today I had dinner again at Sakura - this time I tried their Miso, which was excellent, and had more Avocado Maki. I really like the place, and the waitress actually hit on me a bit, which while I don't think she's my type, was very flattering - we had a nice little chat about HP Lovecraft (whom I was reading) and some other things.
I've been thinking that a lot of people I now know have seen neither the reruns of "Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In" nor "You Can't Do That on Television" - some functions from my stdjokes.h won't link properly without that. :( People, go look that stuff up on Youtube/GoogleVideo - there are whole episodes available for viewing, and it's good stuff.