[tumblr.com profile] sashayed: It’s Not That Bad to F— Up While Calling Your Senator About Something Important

To prove this point, she presents actual transcripts of messages she left on her senators' voicemail, with her reaction gifs.

Sample:

Hi, uh, Sen. [Name]. And staff. [Nervous laughter.] My name is [Rave Sashayed] and I’m a constituent from [place where I vote]. I just wanted to call to thank you for standing up against the AHCA in the Senate. I–it’s an incredibly cruel and stupid and – and vicious bill. You know? And I’m not, like – a person who used to call her Senators all the time! know? I’m, like, a normal person! [Nervous laughter] But this – it’s crazy to me that this bill could become legislation. It directly affects me, it directly affects the people I love. I mean, it kicks millions of people off of Medicare for a tax break for – I mean. You know this. You’re. Uh. A Senator. So. You’ve read the bill. Um.

I would like to remind people that I phoned my MP's office and actually stated (completely incorrectly and randomly) that I lived in a place which said MP does not represent, had this pointed out to me and had to correct myself. AND YET (like Sashayed) I LIVE.

Right now, it looks like the Senate is wavering. Republican Senators are saying they "just don't know" if they've got the votes to pass the AHCA.

If you can't do phoning, you can't do phoning (I am sometimes a person who can't do phoning). But if you can, now's the time. IT IS OKAY TO PHONE AND FUCK IT UP. As long as you can communicate that you are opposed to the AHCA, that's enough.

Also, have some MOTHERFUCKING ICONS (photos of the ADAPT protestors being arrested during their protest at Mitch McConnell's office).
hannah: (Travel - fooish_icons)
([personal profile] hannah Jun. 25th, 2017 06:15 pm)
For once, it might not be geography itself getting in the way of fun.

My family’s going to Denmark for a long weekend in a few months, at the very beginning of September. Is there anyone in that country - on the European continent - in reasonable proximity to an international airport hub - who’d be interested in meeting up for an afternoon or possibly longer if schedules allow?
happydork: A graph-theoretic tree in the shape of a dog, with the caption "Tree (with bark)" (Default)
([personal profile] happydork Jun. 25th, 2017 03:57 pm)
It’s nearly six years to the day since I got on a jet plane and flew away from the wreckage of my attempted PhD.

Quitting my PhD was the second best decision of my life (the best was marrying [personal profile] such_heights) and has brought me so much joy, happiness, and personal fulfilment.

I think a lot, on and off, about whether there’s anything that could have helped me quit it sooner. I suspect probably not, to be honest — all anyone could do was what they did do, which was love me, support me, and welcome me back with open arms when I did finally come home.

But for my past self, the one who got on that plane weighed down with ambivalence, here are a few things I’m glad you’ll learn:


Thoughts for a quitter )
I'm wondering what the English equivalent for the German "Aktionismus" is.

In German this is a usually pejorative term to describe activities somebody (often people in a position of power but accountable to the public, more rarely subordinates under pressure from above) undertakes to be visibly seen as "doing something" to address a problem, but the actions are not well thought out, unlikely to really solve or improve the situation, but are (at least from the perspective of the speaker making the charge of something being "Aktionismus") done wholly or partly to provide cover against the accusation of inactivity or indifference.

Like when you hastily implement "security theater" measures against a real security threat, because you can't think of any actual solution to improve security for real, but not doing anything and admitting to having no solution would be politically very costly. Opponents then might accuse you of "Aktionismus".

So "Aktionismus" is a general term for hasty, thoughtless responses of this type, used by opponents of the actions. It is often coupled with "blind" as in "blinder Aktionismus" to emphasize the lack of plan or vision to arrive at a real solution.

It is similar to the accusation that something is merely a "symbolic action" but that implies more a deliberate gesture lacking concrete results, whereas "Aktionismus" is more of a harmful flailing around.

"Aktionismus" has also some sort of specialized meaning for some performance art movement from Vienna, and apparently the word "actionism" exists in English in the translation for that Austrian art, but it doesn't seem to be used in the colloquial sense. But clearly this is a common phenomenon (and accusation) in politics, so there ought to be an English term.
OMG Amazing! And not finished! I might die. But soooo amazing. Yes, it's Modern Girl in Thedas Mary-Sueish fic, but SOOOO AMAZZZING!

Ad Infinitum (189640 words) by Stormontheocean
Chapters: 68/?
Fandom: Dragon Age: Inquisition, Dragon Age (Video Games), Dragon Age - All Media Types
Rating: Explicit
Warnings: Graphic Depictions Of Violence
Relationships: Female Lavellan/Solas, Cullen Rutherford/OC, Iron Bull/Dorian Pavus
Characters: Iron Bull, Solas, Varric Tethras, Dorian Pavus, Cassandra Pentaghast, Original Female Character(s), Female Lavellan, Cullen Rutherford
Additional Tags: Slow Burn, No really the slowest burn ever, and also Dragons, MGiT, Modern Girl in Thedas, Cullen can sometimes be a dick, But frustratingly not all the time, Ambiguous Bull, Realistic enough to talk about latrines

Summary:After a bus accident, Liz wakes up in Haven, stuck in the fictional world of Dragon Age. How does a modern girl get by when she can't speak the language, and her expansive knowledge of the Blight and Kirkwall, but limited knowledge of Inquisition would only make her look more suspicious? Fake being deaf and mute, and hope not to get caught before she can find proof of her origin. But the best laid plans never work out as expected... -Summary by the magnificent and amazing ElyssaCousland.

Why I love it: So I might have stayed up till 5 am on a work night to keep reading this. I have a soft spot for fish out of water stories, and this one is a Modern Girl in Thedas trope where Liz is not the Inquisitor but ends up joining the Inquisition because she doesn't know what to do. She does have prior knowledge of the first part of the game as a video game in her/our world, but since she never went past Haven, her knowledge is limited. And that's where this fic really takes off. It is not a game rehash. Instead we get Liz adapting to her new world, making friends, losing them, making new ones, working hard, and being sent to the Hinterlands for six months with the Chargers. Brilliant plot twists, excellent writing, and some really layered and well-developed characters from the OC herself, to the Chargers who get fleshed out, to the companions and advisors and even the Inquisitor who is a solid if background character. War and trauma happen and the fallout gets to play out. The functioning of the Inquisition itself is explored, and did I mention that the new plot thing that holds it all together is really fun and amazing? Because it is. This is definitely one to read. Even if it isn't finished yet.
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([personal profile] petra Jun. 23rd, 2017 10:40 am)
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The Guardian: Millions of mysterious 'sea pickles' swamp US west coast

“One of the things we are figuring out is have these guys been off the coast and we haven’t seen them? Are they moving inshore for a different reason?” said Sorensen.

YES AND I THINK WE KNOW WHAT THAT IS. Let me know when they reach Washington.

They're known as the "unicorn of the sea", apparently, so should clearly be claimed as a symbolic animal by you (glowing) asexual people out there.

yes I know it's not the same kind of asexual okay

ETA: Wikipedia just provided me with this beautiful quote:

"I have just watched the moon set in all her glory, and looked at those lesser moons, the beautiful Pyrosoma, shining like white-hot cylinders in the water" (T.H. Huxley, 1849).
tassosss: (brain at work)
([personal profile] tassosss Jun. 21st, 2017 10:24 pm)
It's gonna be a two-post kind of night.

What I just finished reading: I finished Station Eleven by Emily St John Mandel and I have many thoughts, detailed under the cut. Spoilers natch.

spoilers for Station Eleven )

Fortunately there is fanfic that is infinitely more satisfying to read. Both of these are Dragon Age (because I, uh, tripped and fell and started a third playthrough of Inquisition).

By The Still Waters (83755 words) by emilyenrose
Chapters: 18/18
Fandom: Dragon Age: Inquisition, Dragon Age II
Rating: Mature
Relationships: Fenris/Male Hawke, Female Lavellan/Solas
Summary: Hawke was left in the Fade. Fenris goes looking for him. He doesn't go alone.

Why I loved it: Excellent Fenris, excellent Varric, excellent Merril, excellent Hawke -- all set in a post Inquisitions story which is incredibly well put together. Seriously good plot paired with so much Fenris-pining and emotions, and also Solas and Lavellan in there to mix things up. It was written pre-Trespasser, but I would say don't read unless you want Trespasser spoilers because she did a hell of a job predicting some of the plot twists.


The Soul has Bandaged moments (151124 words) by insideofadog
Chapters: 64/64
Fandom: Dragon Age: Inquisition, Dragon Age (Video Games)
Rating: Mature
Warnings: Graphic Depictions Of Violence
Relationships: Cullen Rutherford/Female Mage Trevelyan,
Summary: A big, sweeping tale of two mature people coming together and trying to make it work, despite their pasts. Told in the Inquisition's own words, through letters, personal journal entries, and reports. Humor, sex, friendship, and most of all, romance. My Inquisitor is a capable and slightly odd mage, who finds herself in a strange dance with a good man, who wants only to atone for his past and build a new life for himself. Can people whose lives were forever altered by the Circles truly find a future together?

Why I loved it: Okay, this was one I'd started and stopped a couple times in the past because it wasn't MY Inquisitor, but once I got past that, it was actually a really good fic. Nice and long, told in letters Cullen and Trevelyan exchange as well as journal entries from the two of them plus Cassandra and occasional others. Focus is on the romance, and the interstitial times, and there is a minimum of game rehash. I just really liked the slow portrayal of these two falling in love and struggling with relationship issues while balancing their duty.

hannah: (steamy drink - fooish_icons)
([personal profile] hannah Jun. 21st, 2017 10:56 pm)
I met a friend for coffee after work today. That's it, that's the big Solstice news. It's something new to me, and it turns out that even though it cut into my evening writing time, I really liked it, and I'll have to try it again sometime. Just not soon, given the aforementioned writing time. But definitely before August.
A fic!

That Mutual Dance of Mighty Heroism (6624 words) by Tassos
Fandom: Angel: the Series
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Faith Lehane/The Groosalugg
Genre: Friends to Lovers
Notes: This fic was inspired by a post Hannah wrote about Faith and The Groosalugg becoming buddies, which I thought was a glorious idea, and then she asked me to write it when I offered fic for a fundraiser. I'm so happy she did.
Beta: Thanks to [personal profile] katewrites  and [personal profile] hannah  for beta reading.

Summary: In a slightly altered canon-world where Cordelia's visions do indeed pass to The Groosalugg, Groo finds himself in need of a warrior companion and he has been reliably informed that recently returned Faith would be most excellent.

Faith's not so sure this is going to work out. But he's pretty to look at.

She wasn't expecting feelings to happen.


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 Jun. 21st, 2017 08:18 pm)
The Guardian: Grenfell Tower families to be rehoused in flats at luxury complex

This doesn't cover all the displaced families. And the flats are part of the "affordable" quota developers are frequently required to build along with the luxury flats, with the usual segregation (not being allowed access to the swimming pool etc. -- in quite a few instances, developers have created buildings where the people in the "affordable" flats have a separate entrance to the building ...), so it's a lot less "luxury" than the headline implies.

And they're being bought by the Corporation of London (as opposed to paid for out of RBKC's £274 million reserves?).

Still, it's a start.
hannah: (steamy drink - fooish_icons)
([personal profile] hannah Jun. 20th, 2017 09:15 pm)
Last Thursday, I brought some key lime cookies from Trader Joe's to work, because I didn't have much in the way of impulse control. The cookies were eaten up fast, with a lot of powdered sugar left over. So I took the key lime-infused sugar, poured it into a mug, mixed it with instant coffee, and made myself a key lime flavored latte.

Last Sunday, it was the last day of my long-standing part-time telecommuting job. It's not quite completed - I've still got one last paycheck coming - but all the work and responsibilities are now gone. Over and done with. At thirty-six months, it was the longest I've ever had a job in my life, and it'll be the new measurement for employment length. The work was sometimes annoying and petty, and I really only had to put a lot of effort into it during the first couple of months to make everything easy enough to sustain my responsibilities on an average of ten minutes a week for the rest of things. Still, I liked it well enough. On Sunday, as I've done about a dozen times in the past three years, I went to my boss' house in Jersey City, except this time it was to wrap everything up. I sent out a few emails, completely cleaned out the organization's email inbox and got it to zero, put every related file I had on a USB drive and handed it over, and that was pretty much it. She gave me tea, a mug with a giraffe on it, and the two of us and her husband went out to lunch together.

Today I would have liked to have gotten more stuff done, and I don't even have reasons for it, just excuses.
glass_icarus: (hp: sbp squishy)
»

aww

([personal profile] glass_icarus Jun. 20th, 2017 01:50 pm)
Last night in my browsing for Poirot videos, I ended up finding and watching David Suchet's documentary on Being Poirot instead. :D It's actually quite warm-and-fuzzies inducing, if a bit spoilery on various plot points for various stories. David Suchet talks about figuring out Poirot's character, method acting, sets, his other film references, Agatha Christie herself, international audiences, etc. If you're an Agatha Christie fan and haven't already seen it, I think it's quite worth it!
rydra_wong: the illuminated Sarajevo haggadah (sarajevo haggadah)
([personal profile] rydra_wong Jun. 20th, 2017 05:28 pm)
Hundreds of Londoners showed up yesterday evening to hand roses to worshippers at the Finsbury Park mosque as they went in to pray:

https://www.facebook.com/jocoxmoreincommon/videos/408448636222639/
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-40343485
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 Jun. 19th, 2017 03:55 pm)
Finsbury Mosque attack.

The attacker was wrestled to the ground by three members of the public; the imam of the mosque protected him (the terrorist who had just attacked his mosque) from the angry crowd until the police got there. That, I believe, is how you religion.

Grenfell dead/missing-presumed-dead now up to 79.

One of the dead is Khadija Saye, a young photographer on the verge of her big breakthrough with her work about to be exhibited as part of a group show at the Venice Biennale.

Here's the series being exhibited: Dwelling: in this space we breathe. Because it's astonishing, and pointing people to her art seems like a way to try to give at least one person a voice and identity as more than just a unit, one of 79.

I repeat my link to the North Kensington Law Centre's Grenfell fundraiser. They're only going to get a tiny fraction of the donations going to the big funds, but any donations are likely to have a disproportionate impact (especially because I'm guessing the large funds can't/won't be used to pay for legal stuff).

RBKC have been officially relieved of responsibility for responding to the disaster because of being so fucking useless.

The chief Breitbart London editor (also former adviser to Nigel Farage) is spreading flat-out lies about Emma Dent-Coad MP in order to try to smear her and Labour as somehow responsible for the fire, despite the fact that all of his statements are provably false.
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