(no subject)

Sep. 26th, 2017 03:43 am
ruthi: a photograph of a dormouse eating a berry (Default)
[personal profile] ruthi
Today I attempted to draw some roses according to that gif over there: gifs of drawing roses
Where there's a pen-brush, probably, drawing with delicate strokes and it looks so elegant.

Mine look somewhere between a big mess, starry-night stars, and cabbages. Sometimes hinting at roses.
Needs more practice, I tell myself.


,כשאמא מקלפת תפוז
יוצא לה שלם ונקי ויבש
אבל כשאני מקלף
'תמיד יוצא קווץ



A short poem in Hebrew, by Yehuda Atlas: "When mother peels an orange, it comes out whole and clean and dry. But when I peel, it always comes out a mess. "

It took me literally years to realise that a lot of that was about, y'know, not the inherent superiority of mothers, but about years of experience in peeling oranges. And in using knives. And so on.

ugh

Sep. 25th, 2017 11:03 pm
the_shoshanna: Dean Winchester is Not Happy. (is not happy)
[personal profile] the_shoshanna
Came home to find that the cat had evacuated every orifice all over our bed and several spots on the bedroom floor. And our scrupulously tidy cat-sitter hadn't noticed. I mean, she sleeps in the guest room, not in our room; I'm just cranky, because we're exhausted and it's sweltering hot and we just had to strip and remake the bed -- as well as immediately unpack completely and put everything including the hiking packs away so he won't pee on them. We'd put a tarp on top of the bed before we left, but he got through it. Ugh.

On the bright side, none of the ceramics we bought as gifts seem to have broken in transit!
the_shoshanna: my boy kitty (Default)
[personal profile] the_shoshanna
I'm writing this on the plane home. The International Date Line means that we'll land an hour before we took off! )

And on that note I report that we are now sitting in the Toronto airport, waiting for our last flight home! I still have a couple of days in Tokyo to discuss, but right now all I want to do is fall into my own shower and my own bed forever...

Mount Fuji!

Sep. 24th, 2017 08:49 pm
the_shoshanna: my boy kitty (Default)
[personal profile] the_shoshanna
Kawaguchiko is not actually a very pretty town, unfortunately. But we have still had a great time! )

I'm a couple days behind on blogging, so I want to get this posted. We go home tomorrow!
neotoma: Bunny likes oatmeal cookies [foodie icon] (foodie-bunny)
[personal profile] neotoma
Sons kimchi, tiny bartlett pears, arlet apples, lamb ragu, spinach & ricoota ravioli, smoked paprika pappardelle, pita, Greek chickpea salad, spanakopita, crabapple verjus (suddenly several Tudor recipes become possible!), shishito peppers, figs, and pawpaws.

Ran into [personal profile] temve and [personal profile] ell finally -- they shop much later than I do usually, but I had an early eye doctor appointment. I need to start planning autumn outings, as the Noir City DC film fest is coming up, as well as VelocityDC Dance, the new Synetic Theater season, the Takoma Park Street Festival and probably a dozen other things...

(no subject)

Sep. 23rd, 2017 06:46 am
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)
[personal profile] azurelunatic
Thursday was family games night, with pizza. [personal profile] sithjawa joined, as well as the partner's large array of siblings and their spouses/etc.

After games were done, my partner showed me Who Framed Roger Rabbit? out of the "You haven't seen that yet?" queue. And we watched more of The Orville, and I tested out my stand mixer by making some cookies.

Friday, in honor of the equinox, I baked a sweet cardamom loaf. Then we did a shopping run, and my partner made dinner.

These past two days have involved a lot of small gas-powered motors around. Partner has summoned a yard maintenance company to take care of some of the tree, bush, weed, and tenacious invasive morning glory things that the ex neglected in the interminable six months leading up to departure. It's been loud, but is so much better looking now. Though there are still some more things left for today, like the stack of lichen-covered branches in the driveway.

Pursuant to the last entry

Sep. 23rd, 2017 01:20 pm
rydra_wong: The display board of a train reads "this train is fucked". (this train is fucked)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
Hope Not Hate have an excellent blog post explaining who they are and why they're going international.

We are coming to the United States because we have to. In our increasingly interconnected world, what happens here impacts on Europe. What happens in Europe has an impact on what happens in the United States.

Last year Britain voted to leave the European Union (commonly known as Brexit). This would not have been possible without the intervention of Breitbart and Cambridge Analytica. Likewise, Brexit gave Donald Trump a huge boast and convinced him and his supporters that anything was possible.

One of the main protagonists behind the Hillary Clinton conspiracy stories was Paul Joseph Watson, a 32-year-old man who lives in a flat in London. More recently, the ship charted by far right activists from across Europe in the Mediterranean was funded primarily by Americans.


From last year -- here's a Guardian piece on a Hope Not Hate workshop:

The Guardian: What does Hope not Hate actually do?

In November, I went to a Hope not Hate event at a mosque in Cardiff – a three-hour workshop on how to challenge and discuss anti-migrant and prejudiced sentiments. It drew a crowd of around 20, one or two of them local muslims and a few with migrant backgrounds, but the majority were white Welsh, many of whom had not previously been in a mosque. The organiser, Jonathan, began the session by asking what had prompted people to attend. Many described feeling worried, frustrated and in need of a toolkit for discussing race and immigration with family, friends and colleagues.

Their undercover reporter [twitter.com profile] patrik_h -- looks like a cinnamon roll, will secretly infiltrate your international white supremacist network:

https://twitter.com/patrik_h/status/910245564780081152

Dagens Nyheter: The Swede who infiltrated American Nazis

”He offered me to speak at the opening about my thesis topic: how the left has infiltrated the right. I spoke in front of 75 armed white supremacists.”

The Local.se: Meet the Swede who went undercover for a whole year with the alt-right in the US and UK

Of course, then I was scared. I mean, there was this combination of a group of young men with guns and a violent ideology. That's not a great combination.
umadoshi: (Tohru & the pretty boys (flamika))
[personal profile] umadoshi
We have a window in our bathroom! (A skylight, technically, since the exterior bathroom wall slopes outward and is shingled.) Except I have yet to see the window, because it's on the front of the house and I came in through the back door when coming home tonight, and there's still a bathroom wall between the room and the window/exterior wall. Getting the actual window in was the only time-/weather-sensitive part, and [dreamwidth.org profile] scruloose and the contractor agreed that the drywall would stay intact for now. (I wasn't here for the discussion, so I don't actually know if that's because [dreamwidth.org profile] scruloose and I haven't finalized what we're doing with that part of the room (the extra floor space we could gain by removing the existing interior wall and just having the sloped wall), or because of time constraints, or because that's just not being part of what that contracting company does...? *shrugs* But we have a window.

K.B. Spangler has a new book out this week--one that's not connected to A Girl and Her Fed. (Digital only right now, but a print version is coming.) [twitter.com profile] seananmcguire wrote a short Twitter thread in response when Spangler announced the new book's availability; the key takeaway about the actual writing is "If you want some of the most elegantly written, internally consistent, funny, touching, TRUE science fiction coming out today, you should take a look at @KBSpangler. She's the real deal, y'all. She's writing shit that breaks every rule, and still works."

In related news, I just spent a vile amount on US-to-Canada shipping* to get a print copy of Rise Up Swearing (so far the only compiled volume of AGAHF) and a little pin of Bubbles, the Fed's digital clownfish...avatar? (I'm blanking on the correct word. "Avatar" is applied to something else in that 'verse, though, IIRC. Hmm.)

I was spared having to decide, in this time of "yes, I swear, I'm trying to cut back on spending", whether I was going to get a "Literalists do it with their genitals!" shirt; the shirt is currently unavailable (as in, no longer showing up on the site at all, not just out of stock). My wallet is grateful.

*Ordered directly from the AGAHF store, and she was as appalled as I was at the shipping cost. It wasn't surprising, though.

The first week at Casual Job is over--all two days of it! (Four hours yesterday and eight today.) I'm having some tech frustration at the office that would take ages to type up and is not terribly interesting, but I'll say that I really, really hope the person who sometimes does on-site IT support for us is around on Monday, because WOW, calling the help desk was useless. -_-

So far at Hal-Con I've seen several people wearing geeky shirts from stories I know, and things like a Sailor Saturn costume down in the mall food court. (A moment of respectful silence for the food court workers this weekend, who'll be slammed.) But the best was when Ginny and I were running down from work to get lunch and ran into someone in Tohru cosplay! The cosplayer mentioned that she was off to get her Yuki and Kyo, but Ginny and I were then unsure if she'd meant plushies of the boys in their cursed forms or fellow cosplayers.

#ITPE Dear Creator Letter

Sep. 22nd, 2017 10:19 am
were_duck: Ellen Ripley from Alien looking pensively to the right in her space helmet (Default)
[personal profile] were_duck
Dear Podfic Artist,

This is one of my very favorite exchanges of the year, and I'm so delighted to have a gift from you! Please, aside from my few hard content notes, choose a fic you love and have a great time.

If you're interested in checking them out, here are my AO3 bookmarks which I haphazardly update. I'm also on Twitter [twitter.com profile] were_duck if you want to check me out there.

General Likes: I love fic about women and queers, especially poly relationships, f/f or pairings involving trans people of any orientation, or really kinked out het pairings are good too. I also love and read a lot of m/m so if that's your thing, please go for it! I love poly fic, kink fic (and I will read any kink, really), gen friendship fic and character studies, werewolf AUs, stories set in space, domestic fic, adventure stories, family and relationship stories. I like long fic and short fic. In terms of podfic, I like straightforward readings, I like voices, and I also like when podficcers tackle something interesting, like voicing emojis or playing with an effect or similar.

General Dislikes: I'm not super into fic where jealousy plays a major role in the romantic relationship. It's ok if it's present, I just don't tend to like when it's the main conflict between characters. I also would prefer no on-screen suicide attempts or self-harm (references to these things off-screen are fine).

Hard limits (things I really would prefer not to have present in a story): pregnancy loss or on-screen child death. If there's a canon pregnancy loss or child death that gets referred to in passing, that's ok, but in general this is a thing I can't deal with lately.

Comments about my requested fandoms:

Wonder Woman: Diana femslash please! Or Diana gen! Or if it's Diana/Steve, can we explore how much Steve loves being on his knees? I enjoyed the hell out of this movie and I'm especially here for stories about Diana's youth on Themyscira or else post-movie Diana managing her grief and continually adjusting to the changing world.

Black Sails: My new fandom love! I am here for the canon poly ships, basically, (Max/Anne/Jack and Flint/Thomas/Miranda) and I'm a sucker for the fucked upness of Max/Eleanor. I'm not very into Flint/Silver but I am willing to be convinced if you think the story is good.

Rivers of London: I am a Peter/Thomas fan, but also poly Peter/Bev or gen featuring Peter. I love pretty much all of the supporting cast in this fandom and there's some delightful fic out there.

MCU (movies): I love the Marvel ladies (Natasha! Pepper! Maria! Wanda!), Sam/Steve is my JAM, and I have a soft spot for Bucky/Steve. Team hijinks and feelings all the way down in this fandom.

Dragon Age: Inquisition: Oh my god, basically any combination of Dorian, Bull, and/or Cullen. There is some great f/f fic in this fandom, too! I tend not to find fic centering the inquisitor to be very interesting, personally, but if you know a fic in the fandom you really love about an inquisitor, please go for it.

The Adventure Zone: I have been listening to this podcast nonstop for weeks and I will definitely be caught up by the time #ITPE happens, so don't worry about spoilers. I haven't read any fic yet so I don't know what the fandom is like, but basically humor and hijinks are my jam for these guys, and I've loved pretty much all of the side characters so anything goes.

ST:Reboot: Kirk/Spock, Spock/Uhura, Kirk/Uhura/Spock, Bones/Spock... I will love it all. I'm very into the Vulcan stuff these days, and the stories that resonate between original timeline and new reboot.

ST:TOS: Amanda/Sarek, Kirk/Spock, Kirk/Spock/Bones, the Diane Duane tie-in novels... Fandom of my heart.

ST:DS9: I'm super into Jadzia Dax, Kira Nerys, (is there any Dax/Kira fic???) and my main ship on this show is Bashir/Garak because... yes. I love their banter.

ST:DIS: Anything! I enjoyed the first ep, find the characters intriguing, and want to know more about Michael and Sarek and also femslash between Michael and her captain!

Hannibal: Will/Hannibal all the way. I'm actually okay with the canon level of cannibalism so most of the fic is on the table.

Young Avengers (America & Kate only): This is such a great pairing and I'd be DELIGHTED by any podfic at all starring them!

Star Wars: TFA: REY REY REY REY! Poe/Finn! Poe/Rey/Finn! GENERAL LEIA! Leia/Poe! backstories, future fic, Finn figuring out how to be a person and not a stormtrooper, Rey moving toward her ~destiny~, Leia being worldweary... all of it is good.

Mishmash post

Sep. 21st, 2017 01:04 am
umadoshi: (kittens - Claudia - thoughtful)
[personal profile] umadoshi
--I want to say it feels weird to think that I'm going back to the office tomorrow, but it doesn't seem real enough yet to feel weird. (Having had only something like a week of work in the spring is not really helping. I'd barely sat down at my desk and then we were finished!) What does feel weird is thinking--hoping!--that when I get home tomorrow there'll be a window where there is now a solid wall.


--The first few days back are usually pretty reasonable. (I could conceivably even be home for supper tomorrow evening!) Thankfully, today I was able to finish and submit the half-volume that's due tomorrow, so that's not hanging over me...but I'll need to go pick up my and [dreamwidth.org profile] scruloose's con passes, and then on Friday, no matter what time we wrap up at the office, I'll be going straight from there to the convention. I even made it as far as looking over the schedule and making notes this evening, although in practice I rarely make it to more than a small percentage of the panels and talks that catch my eyes. So many people. O_O (The "rarely" applies to cons and similar things in general, as this is only my second Hal-Con.)


--When I was poking around in my tags the other day to see if I could figure out when I stopped bouldering, I came across this 2013 post about Claudia from when she and Jinksy were about five months old. Oh, my kitten. *^^* (*finds baby!Claudia!kitten icon*)


--I have this half-formed theory that Casual Job is the appropriate excuse to actually start figuring out lipstick, since I really haven't, despite buying a bunch in Toronto. The defense I have to offer is that I'm usually at home living in pajamas when Casual Job isn't on (I'm very glad I'm not one of the many people who needs to Get Dressed to successfully work at home--although if it'd help my focus, you bet I'd do it), and when I go out it's usually either quick errands (hard to convince myself to bother) or to have dinner out with someone (and I know people eat and drink with lipstick on all the time, but it turns out I find it intimidating to consider needing to immediately touch it up while out if it smears/wears off).
umadoshi: (kittens - sleeping)
[personal profile] umadoshi
Fannish/Geeky/SFF Things

"Seanan McGuire on What She Learned From October, Plus a Sweeps!" The interview is about what writing Toby's series (AKA her first novel and series) taught her, and the contest, which is open until September 30, is for all eleven books to date.

"Transcript for OTW 10th Anniversary Chat with Seanan McGuire & Martha Wells".

"Exclusive Interview and ARC Giveaway: In Other Lands author, Sarah Rees Brennan". This contest has closed, alas, but I really liked the interview (and its entirely appropriate attention to mermaids): "My protagonist Elliot is a huge nerd, so when he arrives in a magical world he immediately asks ‘Show me the mermaids!’ rather than ‘Explain to me this strange word… magic…’ and mermaids are for him a shorthand for him wanting to behold the many wonders on offer in a magic land–in other words, harpies, unicorns and mermaids, oh my. He then keeps asking about the mermaids, having lessons about them, researching them, getting different answers about mermaids from different people, until he finally does meet one–with consequences I will not spoil for those who do not yet know!"

"Sci-fi author Martha Wells on writing a series about a robot that calls itself Murderbot".

"‘SHEroes’: Wonder Woman meets Bionic Woman". "Lindsay Wagner, aka Jamie Sommers or “The Bionic Woman,” posted her photo with Lynda Carter, aka Diana Prince or “Wonder Woman,” on her Facebook page recently and, as expected, fans went wild with nostalgia."

"Superheroes for the Jewish New Year". [Book Riot]

Over at [dreamwidth.org profile] ladybusiness, [dreamwidth.org profile] renay posted a great interview with Kate Elliott.

"Present-Day Devices as Props". "Every Star Trek production requires a large number of props to act as technical devices of Starfleet or of aliens. There are custom prop designs for standard phasers, tricorders or communicators. But in most cases there is a need for additional props that either serve a specific purpose in the story or are used as generic futuristic decoration. Several of the props that could be seen are actually slightly modified devices of the 20th/21st century. In particular, game consoles have been used repeatedly for handheld scanners."

Sarah Gailey (author of the hippo-wrangling AUs River of Teeth and Taste of Marrow) currently has an unrelated serial, The Fisher of Bones, running in Fireside Magazine, who've just announced that the whole story is now available for preorder (and...get the ending before folks who're reading it/choose to keep reading it in serialization, which seems a bit odd to me, but sure).


TV/movie news

"Linda Hamilton Set to Return to 'Terminator' Franchise".

"MISS. FISHER’S MURDER MYSTERIES Movie Is a Go, Thanks to Kickstarter".

"“Madam Secretary” Showrunner Barbara Hall Developing CIA Drama for CBS" about "a multigenerational family of spies."

"The real hero of Netflix's "The Defenders" is the way Jessica Jones throws very heavy things".

"REPORT: Marvel Studios Developing a Power Pack Feature Film".


Miscellaneous

"Dictionary of the Oldest Written Language–It Took 90 Years to Complete, and It’s Now Free Online". [Open Culture]

"A 68 Hour Playlist of Shakespeare’s Plays Being Performed by Great Actors: Gielgud, McKellen & More". [Open Culture, 2015]

"Street Artist Paints Fantastic Fake Shadows Under Objects Perplexing Sidewalk Pedestrians Walking By".

Hands across the ocean

Sep. 20th, 2017 02:00 pm
rydra_wong: The display board of a train reads "this train is fucked". (this train is fucked)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
Thanks to [personal profile] cesy for the heads-up -- Hope not Hate have launched a US site:

Hope Not Hate (Twitter: [twitter.com profile] hopenothate_USA)

By way of making a dramatic entry, this seems to have been timed to co-ordinate with the announcement of their epic undercover project: Patrik Hermansson, an extremely brave young Swedish grad student, infiltrated the alt-right and lived undercover in the movement in London and the US for nearly a year, wired for sound and carrying hidden cameras. This ultimately included being at Charlottesville and witnessing the car attack that killed Heather Heyer.

The documentary is coming soon, and the comprehensive report on the international alt-right (for which the infiltration was part of the research) is here:

The International Alternative Right

News reports:

New York Times: Undercover With the Alt-Right

Raw Story: ‘It’s gonna end with concentration camps’: Alt-right executive boasts of a future Europe with Hitler on their money

As you will have noticed, I love HnH. They have a long history working against fascist and far right groups in the UK, through research, infiltration, legal action, anti-racist/xenophobic education and campaigning, and their work seems to have naturally become international as the "alt-right" has (e.g. with the "Defend Europe" boat). I think their expertise (and the willingness of their reporters to put their necks on the line, holy fuck) will be a formidable addition to the US scene.

Also they will allow you to give them money to help sue Nigel Farage, and honestly I would love them for that alone. PLEASE TAKE MY MONEY, PLEASE.
the_shoshanna: my boy kitty (Default)
[personal profile] the_shoshanna
The day after the typhoon was calm and blue and beautiful. And then we did a whole lot of stuff! )And collapsing is our plan now!
rydra_wong: Lee Miller photo showing two women wearing metal fire masks in England during WWII. (Default)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
The Guardian: Medieval porpoise 'grave' on Channel island puzzles archaeologists

I love everything about this story:

Archaeologists digging at an island religious retreat have unearthed the remains of a porpoise that, mystifyingly, appears to have been carefully buried in its own medieval grave.

MAYBE THE PORPOISE WAS A MONK, HAVE YOU THOUGHT ABOUT THAT.

... and now I eagerly await the medieval monk were-porpoise shifter romance.

For a different kind of wonderful:

The Fader: This Artist Is Filling London With Murals Of Extraordinary Black Women

The art is gorgeous, but what I really love is that he's portraying his female friends, people who aren't famous but are ordinary/extraordinary people - a youth worker, a psychotherapist, and so on. And I love the shots of the murals with the real women posed next to them.
umadoshi: (walking in water)
[personal profile] umadoshi
I'll work backwards (chronologically) in this post.

I just finished registering and paying for the Friday evening class (for which [dreamwidth.org profile] wildpear and [dreamwidth.org profile] seolh were already registered), so I guess it's now a definite Thing That Will Be Happening. Time to spend the next week and a half trying to get back in the habit of stretching regularly. >.>

There was some uncertainty before I successfully got registered. The online registration process was straightforward for the trial class, but two things happened almost simultaneously re: the actual class. 1) I got a follow-up email from the studio saying they hoped I'd enjoyed the trial class and listing the beginner timeslots that still had openings...a list which did not include the one I wanted (AKA the one my friends were already registered for, not to mention being the only one that could conceivably work with Casual Job going on), and 2) the online class schedule/registration form showed "(3 Reserved, 5 Open)", but didn't have a "sign up now" button (which some others did). TBH, I still have NO clue what's going on there, but after exchanging some emails with the studio, we established that the class did have openings, and now I've given them money, so I should be good to go.

As for the actual trial class on Friday, it could get long, and involves fitness talk, so I'll put it under a cut )