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([personal profile] mirabile Sep. 23rd, 2017 06:36 pm)
Well, this morning my sister and her wife flew back to Hawaii after an eight-day visit here. We were up at 4:30 and out the door by five to take them to the airport, so I'm a bit tired, but I'm also really sad. I like my sister very much, and this was a great visit. They stayed with us, in our new den/guest room, which worked really well and, they tell us, was very comfortable. Yay! I took some photos, which didn't really turn out, but I'll post two anyway so you can see the new blinds on the French doors:

Den_blinds_outdoors


And here is the other end of the den:

Den_southend


We really like the blinds but mostly we like that they're installed because that's the official end of the remodel. We might do more stuff later, but right now, that's it. Done and dusted.

I spent several hours with Mother today, too, and as she said, it helped ease the pain of losing my sister until she returns in February. We had a quiet day, spending part of it in the garden, and then I massaged lotion on her arms and legs and rubbed her feet.

Anyway, my sister is three thousand miles away.

Because they were here and we were so busy, I didn't practice ukulele or yoga, and I didn't read much online. I do have a few links but first I want to recommend the documentary Score. I loved it so much and am encouraging Webster to see it as well. I gather it was kickstarter funded??? Whatever, it was really interesting and I learned a lot.

I also want to recommend a new-to-me podcast, The Fall Line. I learned about it from Georgia Hardstarck on My Favorite Murder and I'm grateful she mentioned it. Dannette and Jeannette Millbrook (often misnamed as "Millbrooks"), 15, disappeared on the afternoon of March 18, 1990. They have not been seen since. Their case was closed in 1991, and not reopened until 2013. Many neighbors expressed surprise, stating that they didn't even know the girls had gone missing, or that they heard the twins had been found.

What happened to the twins? Why was their case closed? Why did they receive so little media attention? Where does their case stand now?
Heartbreaking. Similar in structure to Somebody Knows Something, another great podcast.

I miss the ocean! So I really enjoyed this timelapse of a thirty day sea voyage. Found via Kottke, of course.

Alas, I have been paying attention to politics and we have called both our senators about that horrible health care bill, fat lot of good that will do. But as a Bay Area girl in my heart, I was pretty thrilled to read the official Golden State Warriors statement: We believe there is nothing more American than our citizens having the right to express themselves freely on matters important to them. Ha!

And that's it from me. I need to recover a bit, get back into uke and yoga, and of course catch up with all of you. I hope you are well.
But honestly, I'm not sure I want to. It's harder to cut felt than I realized!

(Is "logo" the right word? Should I say "sigil" or "symbol" or "shield"?)

********************


The Bad Hair, Incorrect Feathering, and Missing Skin Flaps of Dinosaur Art

When growing their penises for the season, ducks bend to social pressure

The Hobbit Was Almost Illustrated by Maurice Sendak

Growing Up Neanderthal

The Banned 1910s Magazine That Started a Feminist Movement in Japan

Millions of new genes in human microbiome

Present-Day Devices as Props

These jellyfish don’t have brains, but still somehow seem to sleep

The mysterious group that’s picking Breitbart apart, one tweet at a time

Getting emotional after failure helps you improve next time, study finds (Who'da thunkit?)

Gene editing of human embryos in UK reveals new fertility clue

How Big Business Got Brazil Hooked on Junk Food

Women Are Spending Years In Prison Because Wyoming Won’t Let Them Into Its All-Male Boot Camp

Views among college students regarding the First Amendment: Results from a new survey

How Canada has been secretly giving asylum to gay people in Chechnya fleeing persecution

Thousands gather to protest arrests over Catalonian vote

Spain to send extra police to try to halt Catalan referendum

Whites Have Huge Wealth Edge Over Blacks (but Don’t Know It)

Lightning storms triggered by exhaust from cargo ships

Washington Just Sued a Giant Private Prison Company for Paying Immigrant Workers $1 Per Day

These Women Are the Last Thing Standing Between You and Nuclear War

In Battle Over Tax Cuts, It’s Republicans vs. Economists

174 Television Stations Are Being Forced To Air Trump Propaganda Disguised As News

Some forcibly arrested in St. Louis weren't protesting

'Repeal and Go Fuck Yourself' Is in Full Effect

How a federal agent got away with terrorizing his Brazilian ex-girlfriend — even as she repeatedly begged the US government to stop him.

Nestlé Makes Billions Bottling Water It Pays Nearly Nothing For

Push for Gender Equality in Tech? Some Men Say It’s Gone Too Far (Wow. And yet, so not surprising....)

Too late, China and America see North Korea the same way
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([personal profile] sasha_feather posting in [community profile] 50books_poc Sep. 23rd, 2017 09:07 pm)
This is a young-adult novel, a debut for the author, and it deservedly has a lot of great reviews.

Content notes for police violence

Starr Carter lives in a poor neighborhood called Garden Heights. She and her brothers commute 45 minutes to go to a mostly-white private school. It's Spring break and she's a a party in the Garden. She runs into an old friend, Khalil, and they catch up. A fight breaks out at the party and they leave, getting into Khalil's car. On the way home, a cop pulls them over, shoots and kills Khalil. The book is abou the aftermath of these events.

It's first-person and the strong use of voice makes this book real and visceral. Thomas deftly handles a number of difficult topics, such as Starr's complicated feelings about dating a white boy, and feeling torn between two worlds. The story is gripping, and though its long (by YA standards), its a fast read.

I hope to see this as required reading on syllabi.
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([personal profile] beccaelizabeth Sep. 24th, 2017 03:01 am)
I keep on getting stuck with writing or just imagining
because on some level whatever I want to do I want a story with more me in it
and me in any of these situations would probably just annoy people and then die.

I did not like HR's storyline on the Flash.
It felt kind of familiar and plausible.

I want a better story.
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([personal profile] amarie24 Sep. 23rd, 2017 10:03 pm)
I will be twenty-six-years-old (26). OMFG...

Twenty-six (26) is a nice number. A really, really nice number.

I cannot wait.

Holy shit, I cannot wait.



--Amarie
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([personal profile] the_rck Sep. 23rd, 2017 09:48 pm)
Scott didn't get to bed until 11 this morning and so didn't get up until sometime around 7 this evening. I feel like I've been cat waxing all day, but I reminded myself that I don't have any absolute commitments for projects until UCon in November. I want to write some stories for [community profile] weissvsaiyuki which is having a fanworks battle in October, but if I don't, I won't be defaulting on someone.

Of course, today's cat waxing was scrolling through the Gdoc of prompts for the Trick or Treat exchange, saving off anything that I thought might be fun to write, and then reorganizing my old archives of saved prompts in hopes of being able to find things more easily. I don't know that I ever actually will write any of those, but it's hard to say. I also need to figure out a better way of organizing prompts within fandoms.

The Gdoc for Trick or Treat stripped out the links to letters, and only a few of the requests had had the links added back (I think each person has to ask for it to be done themselves and to provide the url), so there were a lot of things that, based on fandom and characters, might have been things I could write but that weren't enough to give me a different starting place than I'd have just writing something for myself.

I suppose that I should be glad of that as a way of limiting how many prompts I saved off. The full Gdoc was somewhere between 700 and 800 pages. My Gdoc of saved Trick or Treat prompts was only 31 pages. Well, 24 pages once I changed the line spacing, but the line spacing copied over from the original.

I slept middling badly last night. I didn't take anything to help me sleep, so I didn't sleep as soundly and kept half waking from the pain my elbow or unhappiness with my dreams (it's very frustrating to have a dream where I know I'm in a story and know how it will all come out and keep having my efforts to change things simply not work at all).
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([personal profile] yatima posting in [community profile] 50books_poc Sep. 23rd, 2017 06:33 pm)
Remember how I said that I was probably way too close to the world described in Juliet Takes A Breath to have any kind of objective opinion about its merits? Join me in laughing hollowly as I disclose that I joined the venture capital industry very shortly after Ellen Pao first filed a gender discrimination lawsuit against the industry's giant, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers.

Why is it on me to learn and improve and not on them to listen to me like they listen to one another? I wondered.

I shall confine myself to remarking that I underlined every second sentence or so of Reset but nobly refrained from writing IT'S SO TRUE!!! in every margin, if only because I was reading it on my Kindle. And that Ellen is a real-life badass superhero and that her Project Include is an authentic Force For Good. And that this book is an pretty good primer both on the structure of venture capital and on what discrimination in the workplace looks like, and how insidious it is and how hard to fight. Okay, I'm done.
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([personal profile] yatima posting in [community profile] 50books_poc Sep. 23rd, 2017 06:21 pm)
Content warning for child sexual abuse, incest, and a fairly graphic rape.

I was puzzled by this book until I realized it was the author's first, and that when she wrote it she was not yet the astonishing artist who created Sethe and Beloved. The Bluest Eye deals with a lot of the same themes as the later novel - the crippling legacies of the slaveholding South, the crises of Black American manhood, the extremes to which Black women are driven to make sense of their predicaments. But they are present here in larval form.

Morrison uses the text of a child's early reader as a framing device, and to throw her dark material into stark relief. I realize as I am writing this that it works equally well as an ironic nod to the fact that the author is here feeling her way into her story and her voice.

The great John Leonard gave this book a lovely, generous review.
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([personal profile] yatima posting in [community profile] 50books_poc Sep. 23rd, 2017 05:53 pm)
Content warning for child sexual abuse, incest, and intimate partner violence.

I knew this book only from the Spielberg movie. I am not a fan of Spielberg; I find him manipulative and his films shallow and cloying. Nothing prepared me for hearing Alice Walker read her own novel aloud. Her performance brings out the vivid poetry and wry intelligence of Celie's very singular voice.

This is the story of the three great loves of Celie's life: her sister Netti, the singer Shug Avery, and God himself. God is fine, I guess, whatever. Shug is one of literature's greatest bisexuals, and I would take a bullet for her. But Celie and Netti are America's Jane and Lizzie Bennett. Their love is vast.

By the end of the book I found myself hanging on every word, and gasping aloud at turns in the plot. You say something like "a modern masterpiece" and it makes it sound like homework reading, but The Color Purple is both great and really, really good.
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
([personal profile] bironic Sep. 23rd, 2017 09:00 pm)
[livejournal.com profile] synn and I went to Universal Studios in Orlando to celebrate our twentieth friendiversary! The main purpose, besides seeing each other, was to wander around Harry Potter World.

We were dorks, albeit adventurous ones. W/pix. )

I am glad to be out of the land of $20 sandwiches and ubiquitous soundtracks, though. Whew.

Obviously this hurricane season is a nightmare and a lot of people fall somewhere between inconvenienced and in dire straits, and I'm doing what I can do help, but at the same time I was selfishly glad that our timing worked out so that we made it there and back between storms. I met some people on the flight down who were hoping to find their houses relatively undamaged and some families at the hotel who were waiting for power to be restored from Orlando and Tampa all the way down to Miami. Good luck to everyone.
newredshoes: red-winged blackbird (<3 | this moment to arise)
([personal profile] newredshoes Sep. 23rd, 2017 08:53 pm)
So... okay, so, I saw six apartments today, and one of them seems... like it could be so good. I really, really liked it when I was in it, and then a few hours later, I was waffling like hell and doubting whether I really liked it that much and whether I should hold out for another and whether I should feel more strongly and why am I not feeling strongly... Broker pointed out that I could be gun-shy, given what apartment-hunting got me last time. I'm trying to stay balanced about the whole thing, but I don't!!!!! know!!!!!!

Me waffling about a super nice apartment )

All that said, as I was typing this entry, a friend I had lunch with checked in to see how the showing had gone. Between her reaction to the pictures and how excited I felt telling her about the place (and realizing that actually I do have places to put all my bookcases that make sense, and I could definitely work with those tiny bedrooms by painting an accent wall)... I'm leaning much more heavily yes. I should sleep on it! We'll see!
sovay: (Rotwang)
([personal profile] sovay Sep. 23rd, 2017 08:51 pm)
Happy autumn! Happy Bi Visibility Day! Happy centenary of the invention of Fluff, which explains why the first thing I ate today was a peanut butter and marshmallow fluff cookie: I spent the later part of my afternoon in Union Square with [personal profile] rushthatspeaks, [personal profile] gaudior, and Fox, who may or may not have liked their first taste of marshmallow but was really into a crunchy organic juice blend one of their parents was trying to drink. (Eventually they covered themselves in it. It was green. That's the first time I've seen a baby cosplay Howl's Moving Castle.) I am delighted to learn that plasmodial slime molds can share memories. I would definitely watch Dwayne Johnson as Plato. I am faceplantingly tired, but I have cats. It has not been terrible, being awake today.
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
([personal profile] bironic Sep. 23rd, 2017 08:36 pm)
VIDDING

I finished a draft of that Equinox treat! Now I can't stop watching it. It is a really special feeling to have the time, energy and capability to make something that comes close to realizing the aesthetics and emotions of the initial conception.

READING

So You Want to Be a Robot by A. Merc Rustad. I bought this at Readercon after being bowled over by How to Become a Robot in 12 Easy Steps. I was afraid the rest of the stories would pale in comparison to that one, which is placed at the end of the collection here, but almost every one so far has left a lump in my throat. Hardly any duds in the bunch. Compelling SF and fantasy concepts with a ton of agender, transgender, genderqueer, asexual and/or queer protagonists and supporting characters. Robots and merpeople and aliens and monsters and supervillains and plots that stand on their own even as they allegorize things like systemic oppression of homosexuality by the Church. Highly recommended.

DOING

After years of struggling to build a sustainable exercise program to help manage my PCOS and address chronic muscle tightness without hurting myself, I bit the bullet and rejiggered my budget to accommodate a package of sessions with a personal trainer. I dunno, it seemed like a thing reserved for athletes and wealthy people, but I'm really glad I admitted I needed help and went for it. After two sessions and three or four weeks, my hips are less screamy and I'm noticing slightly improved stamina, like when [livejournal.com profile] synn and I climbed a millionty stairs to go on the water slides. Although it's still early days, simply feeling like I am in knowledgeable hands and am doing something instead of worrying about it is helpful. As expected, the main issue so far has been balancing gym time and hobby time, especially with all this weekend travel. I'm trying to take it a week at a time.

WATCHING

The Vietnam War documentary on PBS. Star Trek reruns. (A channel called Heroes & Icons started coming in over the digital antenna, so now there's TOS + TNG + DS9 every weeknight, and VOY & ENT after I go to bed.) Soon, Star Trek: Discovery. Auction vid sources continue on. Let's see: I skimmed the first seasons of The Magicians and Powers, both darker than expected; BrainDead, too close to reality to enjoy; and Supergirl, a welcome shift in tone. James Olson is a cutie. Penny from The Magicians wasn't hard on the eyes, either, although the showrunners' reluctance to let him wear shirts started to make me feel manipulated.

FEELING

Sometimes crummy and sometimes happy. There's the world, as you know, and on a personal level, alongside the gym stuff, my doctor and I are switching around a couple of things and seeing how they go; I'm still in the adjustment period. If the above sounds unusually upbeat, it's because I waited for a time when I didn't want to complain or sigh or strangle everyone at the office to write this post. Having 10 of the last 11 days off work helped as well. More on that in the next entry.
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([personal profile] kass Sep. 23rd, 2017 07:16 pm)
...the LEGO Ninjago movie is charming as hell. There's a delightfully meta frametale, plus Jackie Chan, plus bonus points for excellent use of a cat. I think I laughed as much as my kid did, and that's saying something. :-)
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([personal profile] conuly Sep. 26th, 2017 01:18 pm)
I spent an inordinate amount of time arduously sewing together a Batman logo - only to find at the end that I'd miscentered it!

Welp, it's for a pre-k student, I'm not redoing it. He'll neither notice nor care.

****************


Leather, Grown in a Lab Without Cows

These hermit crabs shack up inside living coral instead of mere shells

The Split Pants That Are China’s Alternative to Diapers

Children of today are better at delaying gratification than previous generations

A Brainless Slime That Shares Memories by Fusing

Hot chicken was the Prince family legacy — then Nashville transformed it into an icon, and now everybody wants a piece

Ultra-light aluminum: Chemists report breakthrough in material design

'Family Matters' House Will Be Demolished, Replaced With Condos

How Books Designed for Soldiers’ Pockets Changed Publishing Forever

Why Did India Have Ten Million Fewer Childhood Deaths Than Predicted?

By ganging up, HIV antibodies may defeat the virus

Conversions From Islam in Europe and Beyond

Black, Jewish And Avoiding The Synagogue On The High Holy Days

Earthquakes are even harder to predict than we thought

Mexico City’s People Power

Broad swath of US deemed environmentally suitable for mosquitoes that transmit disease

Why Wages Aren’t Growing

Governments turn tables by suing public records requesters

4 Disabled People Dead in Another Week of Police Brutality

The Persistent, Wide Racial Gap in Attitudes Toward the Police

Federal government notifies 21 states of election hacking

Trump's 'election integrity' group is waging war on the right to vote

Puerto Rico Puts Its Prisons Near Flood Zones. After Hurricane Maria, thousands of families await news. (Seriously, look at that map!)

Failing dam creates new crisis on Puerto Rico amid flooding from Hurricane Maria

Puerto Rico's power system is "basically destroyed", the US Virgin Islands are under a 24 hour curfew

Why Do Border Deaths Persist When the Number of Border Crossings Is Falling?

Border Patrol Arrests Parents While Infant Awaits Serious Operation

The Economic Costs of Domestic Violence

Thousands rally in Philippines, warn of Duterte 'dictatorship'

For Decades, Nazis Have Been Germany's Shame. But Is That About To Change?

Southeast Asia's Rohingya Refugee Crisis Reaches a Terrible Peak (Photos)
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([personal profile] reginagiraffe Sep. 23rd, 2017 05:30 pm)
MrGiraffe has been on an Agatha Christie binge (mostly Poirot). At lunch today, he mentioned that the Agatha Christie Estate hired someone to write new Poirot mysteries and he was wondering whether he was going to read them.

He concluded "no" because the writer would have to :
A. write a mystery plot as well as Christie
B. get all of Poirot's quirks right and
C. get the details of the age he was in correct

and he didn't think it was possible.

My response?

Off the top of my head, I can think of a dozen fanfic writers who'd be up to the task.
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([personal profile] frith_in_thorns Sep. 23rd, 2017 10:12 pm)
I got a new [community profile] hc_bingo card!

secret allies
sensory deprivation
robots / androids / AIs
restrained poisoning
experiments by evil scientists
unexpected consequences of planned soulbonding
arena bites betrayal
head trauma dystopia WILD CARD
corporal punishment strapped to a moving vehicle
forced to rely on enemy / rival
hypoglycemia / low blood sugar
falling culture shock bullet wounds
cages abandonment issues major illness or injury resurrection imprisonment


I HAVE THE "UNEXPECTED CONSEQUENCES OF PLANNED SOULBONDING" SQUARE AGAIN

THIS IS A CURSE
elf: Emily the Strange: Misery loves company (Misery Loves Company)
([personal profile] elf Sep. 23rd, 2017 01:28 pm)
I went looking for costume pieces. I'm aware that my chances of finding the kind of costume pieces I want are low, and it's likely to take more than a casual search to find the kind of things I want within my budget. But I wanted to at least get a sense of what's available.

One of the things I want, is a Victorian-esque high-neck long-sleeves full length dress. Doesn't need to be period-accurate at all; just needs to have roughly the right silhouette. So I went to Amazon and searched for a few things; "maxi" is the current term for long dresses, but that gets me a bunch of sleeveless evening gowns. I searched for "long sleeves," which got me a number of pajama-esque looking shirt dresses, which warned me that searching for anything with extra coverage on top was likely to mean they removed an equal amount of fabric from the bottom. And sure enough, searching for high-neck dresses gets a bunch of sheaths that stop at the garter belt line.

And this monstrosity, which I am inflicting on you, dear readers, because otherwise I will have to bear the pain of having seen it alone. I think the... shoes? leggings? tights? ... are a separate article of clothing, and apparently so is the collar. But the full ensemble is stunning.
.

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