megpie71: Animated "tea" icon popular after London bombing. (Default)
[personal profile] megpie71
Ah, it's Saturday, and I have plans to spend a lot of time doing very little. But I still have time to find three articles from my mainstream media feeds about "what went right" rather than "what went wrong".

Loggerhead turtles at Gnaraloo enjoy bumper nesting season in boost for endangered species by Sarah Tallier (ABC Western Australia)

It's been a bumper nesting season for loggerhead turtles this year at Gnaraloo, on the Ningaloo coast - over four hundred nests have been spotted this season.

World Science Festival: Reef twilight zone offers coral and species protection by Maudy Veltema (ABC Queensland)

When we talk of coral reefs, we often think of shallow, warm water - but corals can live at depths up to 700m below the surface. Dr Tom Bridge, senior curator of Queensland Museum, studies coral species and ecosystems in the tricky-to study mesophotic zone between 50m to 150m underwater.

US Air Force installs remote-controlled telescope in Western Australia to monitor space junk by Emma Wynne (ABC Radio Perth, Western Australia)

The US Air Force is trying to keep track of approximately 20,000 human-manufactured objects in space, in order to try and either prevent, predict or deal with the fall-out of collisions between them. This latest telescope in Gingin is part of the Falcon project, which is aimed at giving the US air force oversight of all objects larger than 10cm in Earth's orbit.

So there's my three for the day. If you've found a story about "what went right" in your news feed, why not share a link to it in the comments, and boost the signal?

Winning, Wan Nil

2017-03-25 00:49
hairyears: (Default)
[personal profile] hairyears
This is not, I think, an occasion for modesty:
https://twitmericks.com/2017/03/24/prize-limerick-competition-results/

...See if you can guess which one of the winning entries is mine.

You don't have the votes!

2017-03-24 22:33
hollymath: (Default)
[personal profile] hollymath
I've been quiet (...too quiet) lately, but it'd be remiss of me to let a day when Paul Ryan said "Obamacare is the law of the land.… We’re going to be living with Obamacare for the foreseeable future" go by without comment.

I was terrified of the vote. Sick with it. When the friend I was visiting on Wednesday excused himself for a phone call, I typed this out on my phone and sent it to my representatives in an e-mail the ACLU mailing list had suggested I sent to my congresspeople:
I'm disabled. My parents are aging seniors, my mom particularly with longstanding health problems. My friends are poor, disabled themselves, or people of color -- sometimes all at once because that's how these things
work.

So if the ACA is repealed, I'm certain that someone I know and love will die who would not die if we keep it. If the ACA is repealed, I know that everybody I know will live in fear, suffering and misery that they won't have if we keep it.

People are kept alive by the ACA, they're kept in their homes, they're kept from that needless worry, fear and misery.

Ive lived in the UK for several years. I've enjoyed the services of a single-payer health care system there for me when I've needed it. I know this is possible. I know there's no reason for the US to be moving further away from that. It's cheaper, better care and my friends here boggle at the country I'm from being so far from having it ourselves. Please don'ttake us further still from that eminently reachable goal. Please don't make people suffer so unnecessarily.
They're all Democrats, and I was pretty confident they'd do the right thing anyway (Franken's been heart-warmingly awesome again in hearings for another awful appointee this week, which always makes me proud I get to vote for him) but I couldn't let it go uncommented-upon.

Today when I saw the vote had been pulled at the last minute, once I'd convinced myself it was for real (too scared to google in case it wasn't, I made Andrew confirm it for me) and that it wouldn't come back immediately (Trump saying he expects Democrats to seek a deal with him in a year when the ACA has "exploded" is what finally convinced me) I started crying.

I hate crying, but this was different. I've heard of crying happy tears before, and maybe this was that, but it felt more like an enormous version of the feeling I'd had on Saturday night when I thought I'd lost the keys to our B&B room and that this was going to be a costly and disappointing mistake to admit to our lovely hosts but then Andrew found the keys had fallen behind a table -- this on a much bigger scale, of course, but the same kind of relief. The same kind of "now I'm not being held together entirely by stress, my body must perforce collapse."

I thought of all the people being relieved and crying and screaming and hugging their loved ones and celebrating and getting drunk and remembering the people Obamacare didn't get here in time for, or the people still outside its help.

I was so fragile; Andrew had to put a frozen pizza in the oven for my dinner and my evening ended up being much less ambitious than I hoped for (I basically curled up on the couch with the dog retweeting things until my phone's battery was just about dead and now I've come to bed but I'm writing this). My body seemed to react, after the tears, exactly like it did on Saturday and after other anxiety attacks: I couldn't get warm, my muscles were almost too weak to support me, I was having all kinds of emotions at once and had the attention span of a mayfly on speed.

Of the many, many RTs, from schadenfreude at Ryan and the other writers of this hideous bill, to the insistence that this is the best time in American history for the Democrats to push for single-payer healthcare (at least, that's what it's been called there; it looks like "Medicare for all" might be the epithet that persuades people), to the acknowledgements that we know the battle isn't over but we deserve this celebration to other badass political shit going on at the same time like a Democrat winning a state legislature seat where she had to be written in to the ballots and just more women wanting to run for office generally...I'd say it's been a good night.

It hasn't been one-dimensional celebration. It hasn't glossed over the limitations of the ACA and the people who live precarious lives even with it. It hasn't made us take for granted the sterling performances of congresspeople speaking on our side before the planned vote. It hasn't made us forget about the need to investigate the horrific numbers of black teenage girls who've disappeared recently in Washington D.C. who never get the care and attention of missing white girls. It hasn't stopped cleverly-named bills cracking down on Trump's corruption as it endangers us all. It hasn't made people stop talking about Trump/Russia or the need to impeach him.

But of all the tweets I've (html willing!) shared with you here, the one I think is most important is this:

Scoff if you must, but this is why I'm involved in politics. This is why I say that I'm proud of my Lib Dem friends, who when something angers or upsets us have a kind of instinctive reaction: let's write a policy motion about this. This is why I've been so much more active in politics (partisan or not) the last few months: it's just to cope with the increasing number of things that make me fearful, anxious and sad.

I stuck with the Lib Dems when they were adding to the things that made me angry and frustrated during points in the coalition because I knew I'd feel just as angry and frustrated but with no political outlet otherwise as I don't feel there's any other UK party that sufficiently aligns with my values for me to want to support it.* But even in things like the WI, which is scrupulously non-partisan (and, being a geographically-based way of organizing people, I'm not surprised mine is full of lefties), I feel like I'm doing the same kind of work: making the world less scary, anxiety-inducing, and saddening.

And if this kind of political event, or whatever you have in the countries you live in and love people from, makes you sad, anxious or fearful, I'd really suggest getting involved in something like this. It's heady stuff: be warned, it's easy to get addicted. Most of my Lib Dem friends have stories about joining where they didn't think much of it and ended up on federal committees, standing for parliament, or whatever. I swear Tim Farron has taken some of my lines when he talks about immigration. I have friends who've helped write policies that have ended up being the law for this country. It's pretty awesome.


* It seems to have been worth sticking around for: my pessimistic husband came away from last weekend's federal conference feeling reassured that our party's membership having doubled in the last few years hasn't made it what he feared it'd be: "There was a real, real, danger that we’d have got a lot of people who thought they were joining the Coalition And Liking Europe Party" he says, but as you can read there it's clear that the Lib Dems are still existing to build and safeguard a fair, free and open society, in which we seek to balance the fundamental values of liberty, equality and community, and in which no one shall be enslaved by poverty, ignorance or conformity.
feng_shui_house: me at my computer (Default)
[personal profile] feng_shui_house
I dunno, but apparently I'm not that poor. I did it all on the computer & paid by credit card, just to get it done.

I went with the freebie version of turbotax (which I found at the IRS form site, not sure you'd even find it at turbotax). It wasn't too bad. Back in the day when I had a bit more income I'd used it, so I had already a username and password, but it decided my password was too old, so I made a new one.

It wasn't TOO terrible an experience, their popup explanations whenever something confused me usually made sense, and there was one time I was misled to start a form I didn't need, which then showed up on the error review since I didn't fill it out & I had to back and search to delete it, and there was one time it got stuck in a loop of not wanting to go on past a page that didn't apply (did you pay car registration fees in another state. No. did you pay car registration fees in another state. No. did you pay car registration fees in another state. No. OK, SKIP THAT.)

And then when I thought I was done, it was The IRS now wants more ID than just your SS number. Get last years return (yep, I printed & saved it even tho I didn't owe) look at this line, print the number in this form, confirm that it's at that line, confirm it's that return, confirm it's the right number. And I think ok, I'm done. And then it's The IRS wants MORE ID, Driver's license or State ID. And then fill this, fill that, click here. And then electronic signature, which is type any 5 digits here, and then look at these jumbled, broken letters and type them to prove you're not a robot, etc. etc.

God knows what they'll want next year. Scan your fingerprint and send it to the FBI? Go to a doctor and get a cheek swab for DNA on record? Use computer camera to photograph your retinas? Retinae?

BUT, it's DONE. *slump* It rained like crazy earlier, which I took as incentive to get this over with instead of doing yard work.

I have got such a headache. OW.
oursin: Hedgehog saying boggled hedgehog is boggled (Boggled hedgehog)
[personal profile] oursin

While I have quite oft remarked that, if you want to exercise regularly, it really helps if where you do it is easy to get to, and something that may not be the absolutely ideal thing but close at hand is more likely to actually get done on a relatively regularly basis than something that might be optimum but a faff to get to. (This probably applies to other things as well.)

But while this article more or less substantiates The Wisdom of the Hedjog in principle, I was a bit beswozzled by the travel distance cited - 3.7 miles - which does not strike me as what I would consider a walkable distance, at least if one's combining it (there and back) with a workout.

It's a different world. And I would like to know, are we talking public transport? or driving? to get there.

Reiterates anecdote of walking from where I was staying in Austin TX to Zilker Park, through entirely deserted streets, and found when I got there hordes of people who had driven there to walk, jog, etc.

(no subject)

2017-03-24 17:31
the_rck: (Default)
[personal profile] the_rck
I have been exhausted and headachy all day. I lay down from about 9:30 until about 11:30, but I didn’t manage to sleep. Right now, I’m drinking a cherry coke and sitting in bed with the lights very dim and a shoulder throw electric blanket (borrowed from Cordelia) on the back of my neck and across my shoulders. The prolonged, very focused heat is helping a lot. I think that I might actually be able to sleep now, but I would like to manage to stay awake and get things done.

Scott is currently out, taking Cordelia and her best friend off for their weekly gathering of friends. The movie of the week is Ponyo.

I think Scott’s disappointed that I wasn’t awake and doing things with him all day while Cordelia was at school and probably won’t be this evening while she’s out. We almost never get time alone in the house. Of course, from my point of view, Friday is the absolute worst day for anything requiring being able to think or being able to deal with noise or bright lights or… yeah.

I’m kind of terrified that this may be a long term thing and get worse next year due to Cordelia needing to get up before Scott leaves for work. Getting up with Cordelia wouldn’t be such a big deal if it was even occasionally feasible to nap later in the day or to go to bed at 8:00 or 9:00.

February booklog

2017-03-24 20:47
wychwood: Lt Welsh facepalming (due South - Welsh facepalm)
[personal profile] wychwood
14. Promise of Shadows - Justina Ireland ) Very YA novel - there's some interesting bits, but it's not really the kind of book that works for adults, I don't think. You have to be about fifteen for this one.


15. Hild - Nicola Griffith ) I can see a lot of good things about this book, but ultimately it was just not what I wanted it to be. And I do think she gets religion wrong.


16. Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone and 18. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets - JK Rowling ) I was planning a whole series re-read, but I'm not sure I'm going to keep on with it - but there are still a lot of good things about this series.


17. Origin in Death - JD Robb ) Solid, as ever, and proper science fiction too.


19. Fashion in Action - John K Snyder III ) Really strange fashion-and-action-adventure, but this was a lot of fun. The 80s were really weird, sometimes.


20. Born to Run - Bruce Springsteen ) Probably not one for readers who aren't already fans, but if you are, this goes from "huh, ok" to fascinating, and it's extremely readable.


21. Better and 22. Being Mortal - Atul Gawande ) Gawande is just great. I'm sorry there aren't more of these to read.


23. Life and Society in the Hittite World - Trevor Bryce ) This was harder work than I expected, and mostly interesting to me as a case study of how little it is possible to know about the past. But it's definitely left me thinking.
siderea: (Default)
[personal profile] siderea
CNN headline right now: GOP PULLS HEALTH CARE BILL AS DEMS CHANT, 'VOTE! VOTE!'

Let the finger-pointing commence!

*glee*
musesfool: "We'll sleep later! Time for cake!" (time for cake!)
[personal profile] musesfool
Five random things on Friday afternoon:

a. I realized I'd miscalculated and only had enough lettuce for four days of lunch salads. I still have croutons, cranberries, cheese, and cashews walnuts (the alliteration was working there for a minute), but no more romaine. So I had an everything bagel with scallion cream cheese and it sure was tasty.

2. Why is it so hard to find a nice red patent leather tote bag? It doesn't even have to be real leather? I would take PVC! But apparently it's not in style now? I don't understand - how does red patent leather ever go out of style?

iii. I went to bed early last night - the past two nights I've had that low-grade fever feeling, with the aches and the chills - and slept okay but I still did not want to get out of bed this morning. I am hopefully going to get some sleep over the weekend.

D. so in the oft-mentioned but still unfinished Thing 1 and Thing 2, I've been trying not to repeat events (it's the same overall story told from two POVs), but I came to a thing that I think has to be told twice - once when it happens, and then once again later, as told by the person it happened to directly. I think that makes it less repetitive? I don't know. I still haven't figured it all out. I've never really done a thing like this before, where it's separate stories rather than just sections from different POVs. I guess we'll see how it works if I ever finish them.

5. Alyssa texted me that she was feeling sad on Wednesday so she put two of the songs from the Flash/Supergirl musical ("Super Friend" and "Put a Little Love in Your Heart") on repeat along with "Hooked on a Feeling," "December 1963 (Oh What a Night)," and the Lego Batman song and found it very cheering. In case you also feel in need of happiness.

Sigh. I am so ready to go home.

***
copperbadge: (Default)
[personal profile] copperbadge
I love it when I’m researching a potential new donor and it turns out that not only do they have past felony convictions for financial crimes, they may have defrauded my own organization already. 

That’s what I call getting out ahead of the curve.

(Actually it’s kind of cool to be the one to uncover potential criminal malfeasance until I have to figure out who to report it to and probably give some kind of statement if it turns out to be true.) 

from Tumblr http://ift.tt/2nZvtDF
via IFTTT
tielan: (aussie aussie aussie)
[personal profile] tielan
When you can barely keep up with the incoming flow of information.

--

Cracked.com: What Helped Convince Me To Stop Being Hardcore Right Wing

I think the most notable part of this is that people are more likely to listen to people who think the same as them 90% of the time, and are only 'crazy' 10% of the time. The 2nd most notable part was that more people are watching than you think.

Right now, I really needed this article. It helps.

--

Vice: What Nuclear War Would Look Like with an interview with a former Secretary of Defence.

I barely remember the Cold War - I was 12 when it ended. But I was an avid and advanced reader, so I read all the 80s YA stuff about nuclear war and the aftermath.

--

Word Of A Woman: The Myth That The Church Alone Can And Should Take Care Of The Poor it's a simple question of mathematics. Church-goer giving could never cover the burden of the poor.

Frankly, I think that a large part of 'charity' is just 'beneficience giving', that is, you give it to feel superior to someone else, because you are better than them, because you are someone who has worked hard and is worthy and the beneficiary is someone who is not so worthy. It's basically an egotrip the largely depends on whether or not the giver is feeling generous and would like to grant a boon. And, yes, I give to charity, but it's a pittance compared to what I pay in a regular year of taxes. Taxes are unglamourous, pedestrian, and yet considerably more practical IMO - plus, they pay for things which are for the public good: roads and public transport, hospitals and schools, cops, and fieries. I might wish it wasn't paying for pollies' salaries, but, eh. Sometimes you just have to take the crap with the good.

--

I can't remember where I found it, but there was this very excellent question asked by a Christian leader. The upshot of it went something like this:
The question should not be 'Who Is My Neighbour?' as though we're trying to work out if other people are worthy of our kindness or not. The question should be 'Am I A Good Neighbour?' because in God's eyes, everyone is worthy, and we are called to 'go and do likewise' to the Samaritan who was a neighbour to the man found beaten and near death on the road.

Jesus didn't say who the man beaten up was or whether he was worthy of the Good Samaritan's help; he said go and be like the Samaritan - ie. BE A GOOD NEIGHBOUR.


Them's fighting words.
[personal profile] swaldman
He appeared on R4 Today this morning and refused to be led into "this could have been prevented" or "something must be done". Instead, he took a sensible line and pointed out that Westminster's security worked.

You can listen here for the next 30 days. That link is to the specific item, and the relevant part is about 4 minutes long.

the_comfortable_courtesan: image of a fan c. 1810 (Default)
[personal profile] the_comfortable_courtesan
Eliza Ferraby looks where she has just written: ‘Sure I have nigh fallen in love with Lady Jane’. 'Tis a mere manner of speaking about a lady one finds entire after one’s own heart, with her fine herb-garden and well-equipped stillroom, her remarkable skill in dairy matters. Simply means one is greatly prepossessed by her. And yet, when Lady Jane talks of the late Miss Billston, there seems, Eliza frowns, she knows not what, but more than the affection due a cousin. But now she writes to Clorinda, and recalls those laughing blue eyes; and feels a curious inward flutter.

(no subject)

2017-03-24 01:22
staranise: A star anise floating in a cup of mint tea (Default)
[personal profile] staranise
I just feel really discouraged with Tumblr this week.

Yes!!! I am aware that my viral post du jour does not adequately address the racial, class, and economic factors that make the concept inaccessible to other people!!! It also does not cite the geneaology of the concepts I used. I wrote it in half an hour before I collapsed with pain and fatigue. I don't actually find the concept accessible either; it's a vague sketch of "ideas I wish were not fundamentally poisoned for me." My apologies for failing to attain perfection in an endeavour that neither contributes to my livelihood nor furthers my career.

(no subject)

2017-03-23 23:44
staranise: A star anise floating in a cup of mint tea (Default)
[personal profile] staranise
Just finished reading: Fair Play by Josh Lanyon

I read the first book in the series, Fair Game, not long after it came out in 2010. It's stuck in my head ever since then. The series is M/M romance and mystery thriller, and part of what amazed me is that the romance was written as intricately as the crime; I was amazed at how the entire tone of the novel shifted without anything being detectably different, and traced the shift back down to a single word in a sex scene that cause a cascading shift of perceptions of peoples' motives and reactions. It was impressive.

So this month Audible coughed up a recommendation for another Lanyon book and I checked it out, and behold! It was the further adventures of the two protagonists from Fair Game. Since romance novels almost always end just as the relationship gets truly underway, I was all up in that shit. After I finished Book 2, I immediately bought and began Book 3. I then took a break from Book 3 to make a cup of tea and play with my cat, and wanted to sit down and write this out while it was still fresh in my mind.

Fair Play is fascinating because it's all about CONFLICT in the relationship and it's glorious. (That is, there are a couple mystery plots, but while I'll read them I won't pretend they're important to me.) Elliot, the protagonist, left the FBI when he was injured in the line of duty; he now teaches university history. Tucker, his boyfriend, is still an active FBI agent. Elliot's an extremely logical guy doesn't understand his own emotions super well, who's used to the people in his life giving him a lot of autonomy and independence; Tucker's a former foster kid who's put a lot of work into understanding himself and is leaping aboard the emotional closeness train with alacrity, but he's very used to being either totally self-sufficient or taking care of other people--not to having a partner, much less someone who wants to take care of him. They love each other, but they start off not knowing very much about how to share their decision-making processes, how to argue productively, or how to show love and concern for each other without surrendering their autonomy or self-respect.

And you know what? They god-damn well figure it out. They love each other so much that rather than break up, they keep finding ways to introspect, express their feelings, advocate for their viewpoints, understand each other, and work it through. It's especially interesting to watch from Elliot's perspective. He's so very unlike me in a way that reminded me of my own special perspective and skills--when he's sitting there thinking, "Why am I angry? It doesn't make sense when you look at the logical situation" I'm screaming "ATTACHMENT THEORY!" but that's not how he operates. But at the same time, his emotional process was written in what felt like a very accurate and honest fashion--he does try, honestly and intelligently, and when he has an emotional breakthrough he faces it wholeheartedly and works it through with such dedication you can see why he tries not to have them too often.

There are occasional sour notes in the narration, especially around women or fat people, that make me a little uncomfortable because I can't quite tell whether it's Lanyon's opinion or just that Elliot is very like Dan Savage in that as a stoic fit white cis gay man from the Pacific Northwest, Elliot has internalized a set of prejudices he's never felt the need to question--he takes for granted that, for example, aging women who express alarm in response to others' misfortune and attempt to emotionally mother others are an alien, offputting, and unattractive species, from whom he would rather distance himself, and never thought more about the topic.

Still. I've finished my cup of tea, so I'm gonna go back to Book 3.
siderea: (Default)
[personal profile] siderea
Me two days ago:
You know what would be awesome, Medium Game, for the Blue Nation and Obamacare? If outraged Repealists started flipping out on Replacists on Twitter, accusing anybody who espouses Replacism of being a RINO/libtard/Democratic plant/etc and attacking them for being a lazy slob who mooches off the government like those damned Democrats.
[...]

Come the day that Republicans expect to be personally attacked by fellow Republicans for expressing any wish for government assistance in securing health insurance, a whole bunch of no-longer-insured Republicans will quietly cross the aisle.

I don't know that the Repealists have started doing this for us. Here's hoping.
Today, on CNN, emphasis mine:
The tug-of-war between the factions angered some other Republicans who are not part of either faction and resent their influence, like Alabama Rep. Bradley Byrne.

But Byrne predicted that when the bill finally came to the floor, political reality would kick in.

"If you are a Republican you have one choice. You're either going to vote with Donald Trump to repeal and replace Obamacare or you're going to vote with Nancy Pelosi to defeat the only bill that will repeal and replace Obamacare. And if you're a Republican, that's a pretty simple choice."
Now we just need Red Twitter to run with it. Oh please oh please oh please.

argh technology

2017-03-24 15:33
tielan: (Fringe - Olivia)
[personal profile] tielan
This is the short version because the long version got eaten by DW.

1. Samsung S7 Galaxy, newish (last couple of months), don't like the keyboard trying to modify it, the on-screen clock doesn't come with all the bits and pieces (alarm, timer, stopwatch) so I need to have a separate app for that, and in the most recent update it keeps on checking with me about the settings for power usage. Look, just manage it yourself, or provide a setting for me to tell you manage it yourself so I don't have to do a manual override of an app taking up too much power!

2. Laptop is newish (last six months) and is doing okay. Some small niggles. Right now, I can't play any music on it. Not from iTunes, not from Spotify, not from WMP... NOTHING.

So frustrating.
nanila: little and wicked (mizuno: lil naughty)
[personal profile] nanila
Location: my parents' house

Me: "Mom, where's Dad?"
Mom, without looking up from her crossword puzzle: "Oh, he's outside in the garden, making a note of all the things that need doing and deciding to do them tomorrow."
Me: *gales of laughter*
megpie71: Animated "tea" icon popular after London bombing. (Default)
[personal profile] megpie71
Another week almost over. Have three stories from my mainstream media feeds about "what went right".

Kimberley's iconic 'prison tree' never used as holding cell for Aboriginal prisoners by Vanessa Mills and Leah McLennan (ABC Kimberley, Western Australia)

This is less of a "what went right" and more of a "setting the record right". The so-called "prison boab" outside Derby in Western Australia has never actually been used as a holding cell for prisoners. Research by Dr Elizabeth Grant of the University of Adelaide is indicating the tree may, instead, be a sacred interment site for the local Aboriginal people, and Dr Grant is calling for efforts to be made to protect the tree as such.

Synlight: Germany fires up 'world's largest artificial sun' in push for climate-friendly energy by AP (uncredited)

The world's largest "artificial sun" has been created in Germany in an effort to see whether there might be a commercially viable way of using sunlight to generate hydrogen.

DNA repair discovery could lead to drugs to reverse ageing, fight cancer and help space travel by Jake Sturmer (national science reporter, ABC Australia)

An international research team has identified a critical step in the way cells repair DNA, bringing us closer to a point where anti-ageing drugs may well be theoretically possible.

So there's my three for the day. If you've found any stories about "what went right" in your news feeds, why not share them in the comments and boost the signal? There's more going right out there than we'd think at first scan of the news.
randomling: A wombat. (Default)
[personal profile] randomling posting in [community profile] spoonlessactivists
Link: here
Deadline: 23 September 2017
Time estimate: 2 mins
Requirements: personal information (name, email address, postcode)
Anything else: Restricted to British citizens and UK residents

(no subject)

2017-03-23 17:29
the_rck: (Default)
[personal profile] the_rck
Tuesday evening, I added about 600 words to my Small Fandom Big Bang story while editing. I may end up adding more because there’s at least one bit left that I need to expand.

I had reflux issues last night when I went to bed. I’m pretty sure that they were largely anxiety related. Sadly, I didn’t twig to that until after I had taken antacids, so I had to wait to take an Ativan. Once I did, I was able to sleep, but I lost two or three hours, so I’m pretty wiped out. It also means I woke with a headache that took hours to get rid of. That took both Amerge and metapropronol (sp?).

At this point, I’m on the verge of falling asleep, and I’m not sure I can stay up long enough to get dinner. It’s only 5:30.

Jukebox Exchange

2017-03-24 10:15
morbane: pohutukawa blossom and leaves (Default)
[personal profile] morbane posting in [community profile] yuletide
Nominations for Jukebox are ongoing and will end at 23:59pm EDT on March 25 (a little over 2 days from now).


Poster for the Jukebox exchange, including a picture of a jukebox and URLs for the challenge. Links to AO3 collection


AO3 | LJ | DW

Nominations are open now.
Sign-ups run from March 28 to April 5.
Works are due on May 27.

If you offered, requested, wrote, or read fic about songs or music videos for Yuletide, consider checking out Jukebox. Jukebox is in its 5th year.
calissa: A black and white photo of a large, dark teapot and a small Chinese teacup with a fish painted on the side (Tea)
[personal profile] calissa

GUFF interviews, kangaroo, Earl Grey Editing, Elizabeth Fitzgerald

The Get Up-and-over Fan Fund is designed to promote connections between fandoms in Australasia and Europe. This year GUFF will send one delegate from Australiasia to Worldcon in Helsinki in August. Voting is open to all interested fans, regardless of nationality. It closes 17 April.

Deciding how to rank the candidates can be a pretty daunting prospect, so over the next few weeks Earl Grey Editing will be featuring an interview with each candidate. So far I’ve interviewed Belle McQuattie, Donna Maree Hanson and Sam Hawke. Joining me today is Alexandra Pierce.

First and most vital: What’s your favourite beverage?

My favourite hot beverage is black tea; I go in for flavoured ones like Earl Grey or some of the fruity ones from T2. Cold well, I have a weakness for elderflower cordial and New Zealand sauvignon blanc. Of course.

Yum. Elderflower cordial with tonic water is one of my Christmas traditions.

Oh nice! I have Plans to investigate elderflower as an ingredient.

How did you come to be involved in Australian SFF fandom?

Through Alisa Krasnostein! A friend got me reading the Aussie magazine Andromeda Spaceways; Alisa was interviewed and said she was looking for reviewers for her review site at the time (Australian Spec Fic in Focus), I emailed her and then all of sudden I was going to cons and the rest of it.

You host a feminist SFF podcast called Galactic Suburbia with Alisa Krasnostein and Tansy Rayner Roberts. Your seventh anniversary was earlier this month. What has been the most memorable part of the podcast for you?

Whoa seven years. Thats amazing. At the Australian Worldcon in 2010, we were at the Hugos ceremony and someone behind us said “Hey, listening to you two is like being on my commute!” We love feedback and feeling like part of a community. Also, winning a Hugo Award was pretty memorable. Plus, I get a regular date with two awesome women. Weve talked about some amazing stuff.

Winning a Hugo Award is definitely something that’s going to stick in the memory.

I was watching the live stream. It cut out as they said our name and then our acceptor was on the stage. I cried.

In addition to the GS podcast, you also teach, review books, write a column for Tor.com, and run a couple of blogs, as well as another podcast (on cooking). Have I missed anything? How do you manage to juggle it all? Do you have any tips on how to steal a TARDIS?

Uh yeh ok, when you put it like that it sounds like I do a lot! I also cook and occasionally do house work; I try to get away for astronomy occasionally, too. How do I fit it all in? Well, I dont have kids or pets. That certainly helps. I also work part time as a teacher and have done for a while, which gives more time not only during the week but also at night and on weekends when otherwise I would be planning or marking. I dont always manage to juggle everything – sometimes I drop balls all over the place. I guess I keep doing the things Im doing because theyre all things I WANT to be doing, so doing them is (usually) enjoyable. That definitely helps. As for using a TARDIS I think of Hermione and her time-turner and I think that would be a very bad idea. Id just end up confused.

What’s coming up next for you?

I’m editing a collection of non-fiction in honour of Octavia Butler, which is tremendously exciting; I’ll also be hosting a Facebook book club, on the first Sunday of the month from March to June, on a few of Butler’s books.

I loved Letters to Tiptree, so I’m really looking forward to this new anthology.

Were excited! Its called Luminescent Threads: Connections to Octavia Butler.

Wow, what a great title!

What are you most looking forward to about Worldcon 75?

Meeting people! At the 2010 Worldcon I was very new to the scene and very shy. I’m still very shy but at least this time I have had contact with people who will be there, so I’ll feel more like I’m *allowed* to talk to them!

Alexandra Pierce, Galactic Suburbia

Alexandra Pierce reads, teaches, blogs, podcasts, cooks, knits, runs, eats, sleeps, and observes the stars. Not necessarily in that order of priority. She is a Christian, a feminist, and an Australian. She can be found at her website, and on the Hugo-winning Galactic Suburbia podcast.

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Mirrored from Earl Grey Editing.

rydra_wong: The display board of a train reads "this train is fucked". (this train is fucked)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
that it's NOT just awesome people dying lately:

The New York Times: Joseph Nicolosi, Advocate of Conversion Therapy for Gays, Dies at 70

From five years ago, here's an account of the sort of damage he did (content note for suicidal ideation):

Gabriel Arana: My So-Called Ex-Gay Life
oursin: Sleeping hedgehog (sleepy hedgehog)
[personal profile] oursin

Meedja people wanted to film an interview with me in Former Place Of Work: this was supposed to happen next Monday, and ended up being today, this morning, before the facilities open to the public. (Greatly tempted to send The Famous Shirt on its own to do the job.) They did lay on a car to take me there. There was not a great deal of faffing about before we got to the, you know, actual interviewing.

This went fairly well, though I always suspect meedja luvvies to rave insincerely: this may be unfair.

I was fairly knackered after this, but yesterday I had an email from someone who wanted to discuss matters of mutual research interest, and was going to be visiting the Library today, so I said, could do coffee, or lunch, and we had a fairly intense and wide-ranging discussion of research over an extended lunch.

And when I got back to my desk, there was an enquiry from Another Meedja Person about a thing they're researching which is one that has (according to me) already been Done to Death, and they were very vague about what sort of angle they might be taking. But I thought I should at least get in a reply politely indicating that It's Been Done.

And then I came home, fully intending to rest for a bit and then go out again to the gym, but could not bring myself to leave the house again.

But at least I think I have done a fair amount of communicating Mi Learninz to people at various different levels today.

Done

2017-03-23 17:16
ceb: (Default)
[personal profile] ceb posting in [community profile] qec
* emailed B and arranged to meet for lunch
* emailed E re Eastercon programme
* emailed Y

Worldcon:
* emailed O re craft and display stuff
* emailed many assorted people about assorted things
* DH report
siderea: (Default)
[personal profile] siderea
As I alluded in my post Junk Insurance, while I correctly anticipated that the Republican mickey for the insurance industry would be to legalize junk insurance, I was surprised to find that the ACHA (Ryancare) merely targetted the ACA's (Obamacare's) 42 U.S.C. 18022 subsection d (which specifies the levels of coverage), instead of just directly attempting to gut subsection b, which is the part which defines the ten Essential Hea–
A key element of the negotiations between the Freedom Caucus and the White House revolves around the so-called Essential Health Benefits. The White House is working to possibly include the repeal of Obamacare requirements that certain benefits -- such as mental health coverage, drug addiction coverage and maternity care -- be required in insurance plans. [CNN.com one hour ago]

I still have it! \o/

That's it. That's the straight-up legalization of junk insurance, by the front door instead of coming in through the side.
melannen: Commander Valentine of Alpha Squad Seven, a red-haired female Nick Fury in space, smoking contemplatively (Default)
[personal profile] melannen
Princess Irene is definitely D'Angeline, isn't she. Which of the angels is her Great-Grandmama?

...Anyway, somehow I was expecting this to be about a princess and a goblin, not a princess and a peasant boy and a WHOLE BUNCH of goblins, none of whom she really interacts with. I think somehow I had got the impression that Curdie was a goblin who helped her out.

That's really the core of my response to this book. As I was reading it (and I'm very glad I did) I was seeing all the ways in which this is really an important foundation block in the later fantasy I've read, missing pieces that I haven't found in extensive folklore reading but still turn up every now and then in post-Victorian stuff, even such little things as the physical descriptions of the goblins. (Such as having a jack-o-lantern face, when folklore pumpkinheads are usually very distinct from folklore goblins.)

And then there's the very strong, and very Victorian, thread in this book of beautiful = good and ugly = bad. Not to say that post-Victorian kidlit has totally solved that one, but still, there's enough pushback against it in newer kids' fantasy (and in folklore) that my response to the lady who is beautiful beyond imagining (*especially* if she admits she's wearing a glamour) is BEWARE, and you should probably go find an ugly crone to talk to instead. Also I can't think of a single reason why the goblins aren't in the right here, given the way they are being dehumanized and their lands are being steadily stolen and then destroyed. They even try for a diplomatic solution first!

Of course, the fairy-story books I was imprinting on instead when I was the age for this were The Ordinary Princess (all about how Ordinary doesn't have to be Beautiful to be Good) and Goblins in the Castle (where Our Hero realizes halfway through that the displaced goblins are in the right and he's been on the wrong side all along). Both of those books are almost certainly arguing with MacDonald and his peers, whether consciously on the part of the writers or not, but I got their side of the argument first and it's a much better side. :P

I was also interested in how young Irene was. There's a standard in kidlit publishing (or at least there was, awhile back) that your protagonist should always be at least a couple of years older than the reading level you're writing for, presumably as an aspirational thing, and also so kids who read a lot can feel smug about reading books for older kids and kids who are a little slower don't have to be talked down to.

But I'm wondering if it's also because adult authors tend to write their protagonists acting a few years younger than kids of that age feel like they are in their heads. Irene certainly feels younger than eight to me, for a lot of the book: at eight I could tell you who my cousins-once-removed were and how they were different from my second-cousins, and I can't imagine many second graders I know being confused by the concept of a great-grandma, or in general have Irene's maturity level. And when I was a kid, reading books about kids a few years older than me, the protagonists didn't usually feel like they were that much older than me. Maybe by telling grownups to write eleven-year-olds for eight-year-olds, you end up with characters who feel like eight-year-olds to eight-year-olds.

I did really like the strong message in this book that adults need to believe what kids say to them, and that if the adults don't, that's on the adults, not the kids. And if the kids let themselves be half-convinced the adults are right and the kids are imagining or exaggerating, it's also the adults' fault, and not the kids failing, and not just "part of growing up." And that the mysterious secret stranger actually tells the protagonist to tell all her grown-ups everything, not to keep it secret, because adults who tell you to keep your relationship a secret are probably not the adults you should rely on. That's something that is REALLY REALLY IMPORTANT to teach a lot of kids (although probably more important to teach grownups), and I think the way MacDonald did it was a lot more emotionally real and with a lot more conviction than a lot of other people, especially modern kids' fantasy, where the parents not believing or not being told is either taken for granted or treated as harmless.

Also wow, you really couldn't get away with handing a character a LITERAL PLOT THREAD in a modern book...
musesfool: Jane Villanueva (your place in the family of things)
[personal profile] musesfool
You know, I've lived at my current address for nearly 15 years(!!!) and for the most part, Amazon, via FedEx, UPS, and the USPS, has never had a hard time finding me. Until this week. Suddenly packages are being "rerouted" after being sent to the wrong facility(!?) or they've been delivered "to my mailbox" when in fact they 1. wouldn't fit in the mailbox and 2. have not appeared in the vestibule or hallway of my building, where such things are usually left. I can't imagine someone, upon opening their stolen booty of roller bottles and tiny gift bags, made toddler fists of glee, so I have to think the box wasn't stolen so much as it just...wasn't delivered as promised. (I mean, I suppose someone out there did in fact get gleeful over the contents of the box - stranger things have happened - but it does seem kind of far-fetched. Unlike the times my order from LUSH went missing. At least that was worth stealing.)

Amazon refunded me and told me to reorder and they would pay any shipping costs (hilarious because I have Prime so there are no shipping costs) but it's just inexplicable that this has happened twice within a week. My address has not changed! It's not wrong in my profile! So I don't even know what's going on.

***

In other news, boss1 said something interesting to me the other day when she was offering condolences, that now with my father gone, we'd get back the younger version of him in our memories. And I was telling L about it, because I've been thinking a lot about it.

It's true that the declining years are top of mind right now, and that's why people telling older stories is so important - he wasn't just an occasionally querulous old man with no short-term memory - he was an active member of his community for a long time, he was loved by his family members, and thought of warmly by his co-workers and friends. He did a lot of quiet good in his way for the people in his life, even if he sometimes seemed overly-strict or demanding with us. And I guess that's the man I want to think of, the one who used to send cheery good morning texts every day, who always made us feel like he wanted us to be happy above all - even if he didn't understand what we claimed we needed for that, he wanted us to have it.

I want to remember how he was always ready to believe in the best of us, and bail us out even when we didn't live up to that (I don't mean actually bailing us out of jail - we never had that experience! but with teachers and other school authorities etc. I will never forget his firm insistence of "My son wouldn't do that!" when he got a call saying my brother had been found passed out drunk in the hotel hallway on the school ski trip. And he never yelled at my brother for it - he just made him pay back the cost of the trip over time, since he was sent home the morning after he arrived without ever even making it onto the slopes. As he later said, he figured the humiliation of being sent home like that and missing out on his trip was punishment enough).

He made his share of mistakes and left us with some annoying baggage, but overall, I think he did way more good than harm in the end. At least, that's how I'd like to remember him.

***
kore: (Peggy Carter)
[personal profile] kore
First of all, thank you for writing for me! I love Peggy and her show, and since you're writing for SSRC I assume you love her and her show too, unless Dottie Underwood made you sign up with a gun to your head. :-) I'm a pretty flexible and open-minded person and am usually surprised and happy with just about any fest fic, because I love seeing what other people do with story ideas and character prompts. I'm equally happy with gen, het, slash, femslash, and OTPs as well as multiple partners. Please don't feel you have to suffer to write a story for me, I think the important thing is we all have fun.


General: about me )


Particular: about the show )


Specific requests from the AO3 signup for my own reference )

(no subject)

2017-03-23 12:13
lotesse: (Default)
[personal profile] lotesse
In 2003, it felt like I was screaming into a void: it was obvious, even to me at the time, and I was still in high school, that the Iraq war was bogus profiteering, but the "grown ups" at the NYT and in the world at large were infuriatingly resistant to seeing that reality. There was a hopelessness: nobody was listening.

Now, in 2017, 2 months after the inauguration of the Orange Man, people are starting to listen, and I am strangling on my own rage. I'd thought it would have felt vindicating -- but instead, I don't know how to speak civilly with people who are only now, when it is too late, becoming interested in looking toward the truth.

The absence of HRC from the conversation is a hole, a wound. Vladimir Putin attempted to destroy our republic because he was afraid of her, and wanted to punish her, and apparently enough of us shared those feelings that they were able to take her down.

(no subject)

2017-03-23 10:53
the_rck: (Default)
[personal profile] the_rck
I gave three books to Cordelia’s English/social studies teacher today. Two of them are hardcover books on the Presidents of the U.S. up through Obama. The eighth graders study U.S. history, so those are likely to be useful to have. I also gave her a library bound copy of Journey to Topaz which is a novel about the Japanese internment during WWII from the point of view of an eleven year old girl. The author based it on her own experiences, so there’s a lot of solid details to make the book feel real to kids. The eighth grade curriculum has a focus on 'genocide literature' and includes the internment under that umbrella.

All three books were in extremely good condition.

I’ve given several books to the librarian for evaluation as to whether or not they’re useful for the collection. The two Dork Diaries books are pretty likely to end up in the collection. The three Miss Bianca books are iffier. They’re pretty pristine hardcovers (book club editions from around 1990, I think), but I’m not sure if kids these days are interested. It’s hard to tell. Pretty books are more likely to circulate, and these are.

Anybody reading this have a child or know one who might be interested in a Backyardigans CD? I’ve got a copy of Born to Play that I’ve just finished listening to to make sure it plays. It sounds fine all the way through.

I’ve been testing Cordelia’s old CDs and seeing whether or not I can get the scratches out of the ones that won’t play. I’m only willing to trying grinding the scratches off twice because the thing we have is manually operated and kind of tiring to use. (We tried an electronic one once. It didn’t work well, died fast, and Scott lost the instructions.) Those that don’t become playable after that are going into the trash.

We’ve got about twenty empty CD jewel cases. None of us have any idea where those CDs could have gone. They’re not in the basement. They’re not in Cordelia’s room. They’re not with my CD collection or in any of the carrying books we’ve got. I can’t imagine that that many CDs are really lurking under couches (I’ve checked) or got thrown out accidentally, so I assume there’s a cache of some sort somewhere in the house. I’ve been keeping my eyes open for about three years, however, and haven’t found them yet. I’m getting tired of keeping the jewel cases, though, as they take up a lot of room.

Would it be terrible to just throw out the CDs Scott’s parents have made and given us of inspirational sermons? None of us have ever listened to any of them, and I don’t expect we ever will. I don’t know. Maybe Scott’s sister’s SIL might know someone who would want them. She works for a church of the same denomination as the one Scott’s parents attend. I was wanting to email her anyway to find out if there’s a place I can donate those cotton rag socks.
helloladies: Gray icon with a horseshoe open side facing down with pink text underneath that says Sidetracks (sidetracks)
[personal profile] helloladies posting in [community profile] ladybusiness
Sidetracks is a collaborative project featuring various essays, videos, reviews, or other Internet content that we want to share with each other. All past and current links for the Sidetracks project can be found in our Sidetracks tag.


Read more... )

(no subject)

2017-03-23 10:57
oursin: Brush the Wandering Hedgehog by the fire (Default)
[personal profile] oursin
Happy birthday, [personal profile] robot_mel!
rydra_wong: Fragment of a Tube map, with stations renamed Piero della Francesca, Harpo, Socrates and Seneca. (walking -- the great bear)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
The Guardian: Donald Trump Jr called 'a disgrace' for tweet goading London mayor Sadiq Khan

Yup, he decided to use the attack on Parliament as an excuse to insult (and misrepresent) the Mayor of London while the incident was still live.

Everyone at Westminster was still in lockdown and trapped in the chamber or their offices while he was Tweeting.

I can't think why he thought London's British-Pakistani Muslim mayor was an appropriate target at a time like this, except that that's a lie, I totally can, because it's really fucking obvious.

Also, the risk of terror attacks is an inevitable part of living in a big city (and I am more than old enough to remember when it was the IRA).
swaldman: Icicles (icicles)
[personal profile] swaldman
Looks like schools in Boston are going to switch from using Mercator to Gall-Peters projection maps. Here's a rather simplistic Channel 4 video that I can only find on Facebook, and which caught my ire this morning for its bizzare claim that "The Mercator makes the Northern and Southern hemisphere look similar in land mass. The south is actually double the size of the Northern hemisphere." (their emphasis).

That sentence made me go "huh?", and I'm pretty sure is complete claptrap, but anyway. Boston schools might be on to something; and I'm glad that they are thinking about the maps that they use, and for elementary schools who aren't going to delve into projections, Peters might be a good choice; but much of the media commentary that surrounds it seems to be about jumping from an Unjust Imperialist Map to a One True Map, and that's rubbish. While I am delighted that people are becoming more aware of the shortcomings of Mercator, I am disappointed that they are focussing on a single other projection to replace it. Yes, Mercator is wrong. But ALL maps are wrong, because you can't accurately flatten the surface of a globe onto a bit of paper. Different projections are wrong in different ways, and useful in different ways, and it's important to select the best one for the task at hand (which, incidentally, is why Mercator exists: not to benefit imperial powers as some are suggesting with much hand-wringing, although it does have a side-effect of enlarging Europe, but because it's good for long-distance navigation).

Perhaps the most significant bit of map-wrongness in the next few decades, IMHO, is our treatment of northern latitudes as a boundary and a barrier. I wrote about this before.

serene: we're having hot lesbian sex. and by lesbian sex, we mean tea. but it's hot. (lesbian tea)
[personal profile] serene
I didn't get the job. I don't really mind. Changing jobs is stressful.

This post has some spoilers for The Hate U Give and Lincoln in the Bardo.

Reading )

Watching )

Listening )

Playing )
megpie71: Storyboard Zack Fair is happy - smiling, moving up and to the right. (Boing)
[personal profile] megpie71
I'm going to be having a busy day today - housework and study combined. But I'm not too busy to stop and look for three articles about "what went right" in my mainstream media feeds. Here they are.

Night parrot sighting in Western Australia shocks birdwatching world by Ann Jones ("Off Track", RN, ABC Western Australia)

The photo is of the south end of a north-bound bird which looks like a rather plump yellow budgie. But it's a night parrot - a bird which was presumed to be extinct until about four years ago; and it was up near Broome in Western Australia, about 2000 km from their current known habitat in Western Queensland. One thing for certain, night parrots are full of surprises!

Pilot clean-up program hailed as answer to Western Australia's abandoned mines by Sam Tomlin (ABC Goldfields, Western Australia)

The WA Department of Mines and Petroleum says its growing Mine Rehabilitation Fund is the answer to the question of what happens when mining finishes or stops abruptly, and leaves a minesite needing to be rehabilitated. The fund, which consists of a levy of 1% on the annual profits of any mining company in Western Australia, has been running since 2013, and is intended to cover the costs of rehabilitation and clean-up. So far, it's been used to cover the rehabilitation costs of the Pro Force gold mine near Coolgardie, and the Black Diamond coal mine near Collie.

Mouldy food could be a thing of the past thanks to Murdoch University research by Sarah Collard

Research at Murdoch University by Dr Kirsty Bayliss is aimed at finding the optimal type of plasma flame to treat various types of food (fruit, bread, meat, grains, dairy products) in order to prevent mould infections. At present, they're focussing on avocados, and finding some interesting results. The plasma flame not only kills off the mould spores on the surface of fruit, but also appears to stimulate a resistance response within the fruit itself.

So there's my three for the day. If you've found any stories about "what went right" in your news feed, why not share them in the comments, and boost the signal.

(no subject)

2017-03-22 21:21
skygiants: Princess Tutu, facing darkness with a green light in the distance (cosmia)
[personal profile] skygiants
After reading Peter Beagle's Summerlong and being Tragically Unimpressed, I made my book club read Tamsin just so I could remember the Beagles I have loved before.

Tamsin is very much a Beagle I have loved before. As a teenager it was probably my favorite Beagle, even moreso than The Last Unicorn, just because I identified so hard with sulky, obstreperous Jenny Gluckstein, a Jewish New York teenager who moves to Dorset and promptly falls head-over-heels for a beautiful eighteenth-century ghost named Tamsin Willoughby.

I described the book this way in book club. "But I don't want to oversell you on how gay it is," I added, worriedly. "I mean I haven't reread it since I was a teenager. It definitely might not be as gay as I remember. Maybe it isn't gay at all, and I was just projecting!"

...rest assured, this book is very gay. We're not entirely sure if Beagle knows just how gay it is? There are numerous moments where Jenny describes in great detail the tingly feelings that Tamsin's quirky smile and vanilla smell and tiny ghost freckles make her feel, and then adds something like "I guess I'll probably feel that way about a boy someday!" Will you, Jenny? WILL YOU?

(I mean, maybe she will, bisexuality definitely an option, I'm just saying. The book is first-person, with the device of being an explanation of Everything That Went Down from the perspective of several years later for Jenny's friend Meena to read; the structure makes a whole lot more sense if one just assumes Jenny and Menna are by this point dating. Meena is in the book plenty! Thematically paralleled with Tamsin, even! Meena's jealousy of the time Jenny spends mysteriously disappearing to hang out with a ghost and Jenny's jealousy of Meena's tragic crush on The Boy She Pines For Across The Choir Benches is a whole thing!)

So yes, in retrospect, it turns out I still love Tamsin - even though, in retrospect, reading it now, it's a super weirdly-structured book. The first solid third of the book is all Jenny's SULKY OBSTREPEROUS AGONIZING TEENAGE FEELINGS about leaving New York, which is fine, I guess, except it introduces half a dozen characters that are super important to Jenny in New York and will never be important again. Then another character who's incredibly important to the finale of the book shows up maybe three chapters before the end, and Jenny's like "oh yeah, I forgot to mention her? But she's been here the whole time, having weird interactions with me the whole time, let's just pretend I've been talking about it, OK? OK."

Still, Jenny's amused-embarrassed voice looking back at all the time she spent as a hideously embarrassing teenager continues to ring about as true for me as it did when I myself was a hideously embarrassing teenager. I think I'm always going to love Tamsin for that.

(Also the tragic feline love story of between Jenny's actual factual cat and Tamsin's imperturbable ghost cat continues to delight.)
davidgillon: A pair of crutches, hanging from coat hooks, reflected in a mirror (Default)
[personal profile] davidgillon


The other day I received a letter letting me know that Kent and Medway Wheelchair Services is being privatised (they were worried about this happening when I went through the system last summer). Now in theory it shouldn't make any difference to the service I receive, but, as I noted on Twitter, it does mean someone now expects to make a profit out of my needs/my wheels.

Today the new franchise holder followed my twitter account. Now admittedly it's a new account, but they're following a grand total of 7 accounts, only two of which are individuals, and the other one is Tanni, aka Baroness Tanni Grey-Thomson, parliamentarian, multiple paralympian and the most famous wheelie in the country.

The scary thing is I didn't mention where I lived. They must have pulled it out of the #wheelchair stream from a week ago, figured out I was talking about them and made a note to follow me once their account was up.

Of course that's not remotely likely to intimidate someone from freely discussing the service they depend on.

Nope, not one bit.

(Well, not if you know me, but other people...)

nenya_kanadka: "Intarwebz = serius bizness" (@ Intarwebz srs bsns)
[personal profile] nenya_kanadka
Goddammit, earwormed by failmeme again:

(to the tune of Turkey In The Straw or perhaps Battle Hymn of the Republic; and in response to the Serious Question posed in the first line)

Do you ever trap your nipple in the fold-out bit?
Do you play in nippy weather and then agonize your tit?
Do you briskly pump your bellows in the midst of all your fellows
Just to find you've trapped your nipple in the fold-out bit?


I think it's the "briskly" that does me in every time. 😂

(no subject)

2017-03-22 17:01
staranise: A star anise floating in a cup of mint tea (Default)
[personal profile] staranise
I recently had a brainstorm and reserved the Tumblr URL [tumblr.com profile] saltine-canadian. A little while later I decided I didn't want it after all. Are there any other salty Canadians out there who might want it?

(I also later realized that properly "salty" would be saline-Canadian; on the other hand the definition of "saltine" is "a thin salted cracker" and that is... not wholly inaccurate)

Permanent Residents, refugees, expatriates, and long-term residents also welcome to apply.

Reading Wednesday 22/03

2017-03-22 22:26
liv: alternating calligraphed and modern letters (letters)
[personal profile] liv
Recently acquired:
  • Can neuroscience change our minds? by Hilary and Steven Rose. Steven Rose was a big influence on getting me into bioscience, so I excited to learn that he's written a new book about debunking neurobollocks, a subject close to my heart. And that he's written it in collaboration with his wife, a sociologist of science.

  • Three non-fiction books to give as belated bar mitzvah presents: I went with A history of God by Karen Armstrong, 1491 by Charles Mann, and The undercover economist by Tim Harford in the end. I reckon that gives a reasonable spread of perspectives, periods and cultures to get a curious teenager started.

  • A whole bunch of mostly novels for a not-very-sekrit plot.

Recently read:
  • This is a letter to my son by KJ Kabza, as recommended, and edited by [personal profile] rushthatspeaks. It's a near-future story about a trans girl, which has minimal overt transphobia but quite a lot of cis people being clueless, and also it's about parent death among other themes.

  • Why Lemonade is for Black women by Dominique Matti, via [personal profile] sonia. Very powerful essay about intersectionality between gender and race. I've not actually seen Lemonade yet, because everything I've read about it suggests it's a large, complex work of art which I need to set aside time to concentrate on, I can't just listen to the songs in the background. And I'm a bit intimidated by the medium of a "visual album".
Currently reading: A Journey to the end of the Millennium by AB Yehoshua. Not much progress.

Up next: I am thinking to pick up How to be both by Ali Smith, which has been on my to-read pile for a while. We'll see.

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