Okay, a first world problem

May. 23rd, 2017 06:30 pm
oursin: Sign saying 'Hedgehog Xing' and drawing of hedgehog (Hedgehog crossing)
[personal profile] oursin

But after a reasonably uneventful transatlantic journey, and O'Hare being no more irksome than before, and indeed, the passport kiosks do speed things up though there is still queuing once you've done so -

It's really, really annoying to find that the wifi in the hotel is on the fritz (actually, there was also something Not Right with Heathrow Terminal 3 wifi this morning, but at least I still had mobile data activated on my phone without the prospect of ruinous charges) which is apparently a wider system problem.

I am therefore posting from the one terminal in the lobby that is a) connected to the internet and b) actually works - I had to remove myself temporarily when a young person wanted to 'very quickly' print something out, which turned out not to be quick at all, tell me again about the digital native generation.

Yes, in the general scheme of things, a minor inconvenience. But after a day of taxis and airports and planes, annoying.

But, anyway, here I am.

commodorified: very worried stuffed crocodile clutching a pillow (not coping)
[personal profile] commodorified
Since I'm half-packed and we're leaving in less than 24 hours it's probably time to announce that I am coming to WisCon. (Now watch me wake up tomorrow with Lorayne's cold or something.)

I'm not signed up for any panels, I'm not volunteering this year. I'm not 100 percent sure that this isn't going to end in disaster again. Depending on how I react to the various allergens in Madison I may be very low-energy, I may be sneezy and stuffed-up, I may be spending a lot of time asleep, I may be slow and forgetful due to being low oxygen, I may recuse myself rapidly from controversy or trouble if I don't see an immediate way to be useful.

I may have to leave panels abruptly due to coughing fits. We may be leaving abruptly to get me back to Canada for treatment. (My out-of-province insurance isn't going to cover me for another serious asthma event in the same damn' city as the last one. That's kind of the definition of 'pre-existing'). We have a plan for this. It's as solid as we can make it.

Or we may have trouble at the border and not get there at all.

Or it all may be just fine. I really don't know. There's no way to tell.

But I'm on a new med (Singulair), and taking ALL the other ones, religiously, and so far my lungs seem to be willing to stay fairly functional. I'm bringing my bike. I'm hoping to stay an extra week and see friends. I'm cautiously optomistic.

A small request: if you see me, and we're friends, and you possibly can, grab me for coffee or food or a quick chat? This is almost certainly my last WisCon for some time, and if I do have a dangerous reaction, it's my last WisCon, period.

I know that I've lost touch with a lot of you due to missing the con and generally being offline and preoccupied trying to get my health under control. I'm sorry about it, and I'd really like to connect this weekend if we can, because you all are one of the communities of my heart, and to be honest I'm coming much more for y'all than for the "official" con.

If you or someone near you is wearing scent, I may have to back away rapidly. I'm sorry.

I'm not really accustomed to being a fragile little flower, you know? I'm still working out how to handle it.

Also, if there's a volunteer task I can do, something you need help with, that you can grab me for on the spot, please do. It's hard to contribute meaningfully when you can't make any promises, and I'll appreciate any chances to do so.
copracat: Freddie Mercury glamming it up on stage with the text 'Did you say gay pants?' (freddie)
[personal profile] copracat
What a grievous day. Surely the world's sadness index is sitting high enough.

10.A song that makes you sad: 39 - Queen



It's a 1979 live recording so the sound is a bit scruffy. I grew up with LPs and transistor radios so scruffy sound is just right. But don't skip it for the sound. Freddie is wearing tight red pants.

Here's some better definition sadness for your ears: maybe more than one more )

RIP Roger Moore, I had a huge crush when I was a wee girl and I've had a soft spot ever since. You were wrong a about Idris Elba, of course.

Not Exactly Lerner & Loewe (7177 words) by Liviapenn
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: The Persuaders
Rating: Mature
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Brett Sinclair/Danny Wilde
Additional Tags: Bickering, Flirting, 1970s, Jet-Setting Playboys In Love, Yuletide 2012, Horse Racing
Summary:

Considering how picky His Lordship could be about the little things in life, and how little real hardship he'd ever actually lived through, Danny considered it his assigned mission in life to yank the guy's chain and ruffle his feathers every now and again.

If that maybe resulted, this time, in some other bits getting yanked and ruffled, well, Danny had no objection.

Jew-ish

May. 23rd, 2017 01:45 pm
liv: In English: My fandom is text obsessed / In Hebrew: These are the words (words)
[personal profile] liv
This weekend I went to another Jewish-Muslim interfaith event. I was not exactly the main target audience, which was mainly people whose actual job is religious education. I did get to meet some Somali Bravanese Muslims, an ethnic minority from Somalia via Kenya whom I hadn't encountered before.

Anyway we had some very interesting discussions, including around the use of language. Some of the Muslim participants said they didn't like what I had thought of as an otherwise neutral older spelling, Moslem. They said they associate that spelling and pronunciation with people like Donald Trump, and I can see that people who haven't bothered to update their language might well be assumed to be hostile. I don't particularly need to change my own language choices since I have been using the modern spelling anyway, but it's useful to note.

Then of course the conversation turned to the Jewish side, and the somewhat fraught issue of what we should be called. is 'Jew' a slur? )

Here is a delightful thing

May. 23rd, 2017 09:38 am
rydra_wong: The display board of a train reads "this train is fucked". (this train is fucked)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
Via [tumblr.com profile] violent-darts:

AV Club: Meme becomes reality as Netflix orders Lupita Nyong’o and Rihanna’s con artist movie

Because we need it this morning.

Fuck terrorism, fuck Katie Hopkins and her vile cohorts, pre-emptively fuck Trump because presumably he's going to make some sort of statement about Manchester at some point and it's going to be awful (or at best the kind of vacuous blandness that means they've managed to make him stick to a script for a few moments), go awesome black women and making movies happen through the power of Twitter and delight.

May all the surviving kids at the concert be safe and reunited with their families soon and participating in the proud British tradition of recounting acts of terrorism in terms of the epic journeys that had to be taken because public transport was shut down (a la 7/7 -- Americans: "We weep for you!" British people: "I had to walk for FIVE HOURS").

ETA: Oh fuck they let him write at least part of it. Yes, of course Buttercup thinks the worst thing you can call someone is a "loser". Because winning is all that counts, and Buttercup is the winningest winner ever. Losing means you're wrong because winning is right.

(no subject)

May. 23rd, 2017 07:08 am
oursin: Brush the Wandering Hedgehog by the fire (Default)
[personal profile] oursin
Happy birthday. [personal profile] szandara!

Newly local characters

May. 22nd, 2017 03:13 pm
azurelunatic: The (old) Tacoma Narrows Bridge, intact but twisted. (Tacoma)
[personal profile] azurelunatic
Once I move at the beginning of June, there will be a new local set of people.


Me: y'all know me. Lunatic, infovore. Gender: no thank you. Pronoun set: plural-they.

Partner: a witty, kind geekfolk, fascinated by books and shows and links and sports and hardware and eking every last ounce of usefulness out of old gear. I have known them for about 10 years at this point. Infovore. Gender: has a lot of oppressive constructs which should be BURNED THE FUCK DOWN while not endangering the vulnerable folks who depend on some of its supportive ones. Pronoun set: anonymous-they.

Metamour: has been seeing my partner since February-ish. Met them over a game of CAH; knew they had to be friends when they had pretty much the same answer. Witty, beautiful. Likes baking. Gender: woman. Pronoun set: she/her.

Tay-Tay: my younger (biological) sister, and soon to be my roommate. I say she is my "baby" sister but she's actually a year older than my partner. Violinist and general ball of energy. Short and tiny; I can kind of lift her in one arm so she can be on eye level with my partner. Gender: probably woman-ish and she likes kicking over gender norms and dancing on top. Pronoun set: she/her.

The Kitten: a small, loud, grey indoor lap cat who loves my partner and will punch people who try to pet her without her permission. Previous owners declawed her. She is food-insecure, and cannot be left to free-feed. She's antisocial to other cats. She does not like Master Jerkface very much at all. She is most often found perched on the back of my partner's desk chair and getting hair on their jacket, on my partner's lap with her tail in their face demanding to be petted, or on top of them when they're asleep.

Master Jerkface (and other equally unflattering nicknames): the abusive ex of my beloved partner. I hope to not meet them. Gender: they have one. Pronoun set: as used here, anonymous-they.

The Man-Child: Tay's boyfriend, who I didn't hear about in the context of a Relationship until September 2016, literally as I was coming back from the Oakland radiation oncology department. Musician, outdoorsy hiker type. A few decades too old for man-childishness to be excused. Gender: man, probably. Pronoun set: he/him.


Team Partner: a bunch of people who came together to help my partner in their hour of need. They include:

an old internet friend of mine who reads the Vorkosigan books
their wife
a friend of theirs

The first hosts: one of my partner's former co-workers who went into tech and her husband

The second hosts: another co-worker-ish person and her husband


Assorted now-local friends of mine include:

Mr. Zune: a former co-worker from Virtual Hammer who is now at the SEA-TAC outpost as his career was portable
Mr. Zune's Girlfriend: got a dream job in the Seattle area

[livejournal.com profile] tygerr: an old friend and Listee
[livejournal.com profile] tygerr's wife: an excellent and fun geek lady

Carnelian: a friend of mine from the late 90s; we had various different paths in life but now we're talking again and comparing notes.
Terezi: Carnelian's daughter, who infamously needed two stacked baby gates to keep her contained as a toddler. Now a proud teenage tumblr bb. (I haven't seen her in Many Years, but I'm likely to run into her more often now.)

Various #dw, #dw_kvetch, and #lj_s folk!!!
rydra_wong: The display board of a train reads "this train is fucked". (this train is fucked)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
No, a literal one, not (just) metaphorical. I had to Google to be sure. Reality is getting way too on-the-nose lately.

Also: TPM: Trump Denies He Said ‘Israel’ When He Shared Israeli Intelligence With Russia

That's right: while in Israel, Buttercup spontaneously confirmed for the press that Israel was the source of the uber-classified intel he shared with the Russians without the Israelis' permission, but he thinks it's all fine because he didn't say the word "Israel" while in the room with the Russians (just, you know, now, on TV, in front of the entire world, in case the Russians had any remaining doubt about where the intel came from), so that's okay.

Blogiversary

May. 22nd, 2017 04:08 pm
liv: Stylised sheep with blue, purple, pink horizontal stripes, and teacup brand, dreams of Dreamwidth (_support)
[personal profile] liv
I note in passing that it's 14 years to the day since I started this blog, 6 years on LJ and 8 years on DW. That's a lot of writing and a lot of conversations. I've made just over 2000 posts in 14 years, and I think the average length is only a little under a thousand words, so somewhere between 1.5 and 2 million words and that's not even counting comments. I was really not expecting either the site or my interest in blogging to last as long as 14 years, but I'm really glad you're all still here.

I still don't have a good way of making an offline archive of DW; the program LJArchive is timing out because, I think, my DW is just too huge, and it doesn't have a way of downloading one bit at a time. Does anyone have any recs?

It's also coming up to the end of my 7th year of working at Keele – I've finished teaching and only have exams to go through before this academic year is over. It's a pretty awesome job in lots of ways. Our senior people like to point out that there have been over a million consultations when patients have been treated by Keele-trained doctors in the ten year history of the medical school, and I've contributed to the education of quite a high proportion of those doctors.

And it's the 20th anniversary, give or take, of my leaving school. I have signed up to attend the reunion next month; I'm not entirely sure that was a good idea, but I am at least somewhat curious to see if I can pick up some gossip from anyone who isn't on Facebook. I don't think anyone is going to be surprised that I'm an academic, that's what everybody was predicting when I was going around convinced I was going into school teaching. But they might well be surprised that I'm married and poly.

Anyway, now I'm going to catch a train from the new exciting local to my house station.
oursin: Photograph of a spiny sea urchin (Spiny sea urchin)
[personal profile] oursin

But, in lighter news, I have been spammed by another dodgy journal, which seems to think I am a woman physician and wants me to be on its editorial board. I do wonder what kind of a journal it is when it wants not only a CV but a photo from applicants...:

[L]ooking for prominent physicians in the field of Women's Health, to be a part of the editorial board to convey finest clinical resource and increase scope for best clinical understanding.

The journal is looking forward to peers with top academic aptitude whose judgment is highly regarded within the journals main discipline.

I think judgement will be highly regarded in ignoring such solicitations.

Ironing: done.

Online check-in: done (also I managed to improve my seat somewhat without actually paying and arm and a leg for the upgrade).

So, anyway, general status: wibbling.

Six Wakes by Mur Lafferty

May. 21st, 2017 09:17 pm
lightreads: a partial image of a etymology tree for the Indo-European word 'leuk done in white neon on black'; in the lower left is (Default)
[personal profile] lightreads
Six Wakes

3/5. Locked spaceship mystery in which six clones wake up with missing memories on a generation ship lightyears from earth in the bloody wreckage of their prior deaths.

When I say that this book is "fun" and "a palate-cleanser" it should be understood that includes stabbings. Lots of stabbings. And six cagey, pissed off people running around an enclosed space alternately feeding and attempting to kill each other. There's this vague philosophical underbelly going on about the things you might expect – immortality and the ways it changes you – but let's be real, I was here for stabbings and plot twists and revenge schemes.

But I mostly wanted to talk about the fact that the author reads the commercial audio. This is a thing that is happening more often, and I get why it seems like a good idea. But you know what? Audio narration is a skill, and it takes practice, and probably also some innate talent. Mary Robinette Kowal has been doing it for a while, and she was pretty good reading her own stuff. Same with Emma Newman, who has extensive experience and who really knocked her own Planetfall out of the park (and who has the advantage of a lovely voice to work with). Lafferty does podcasts, but that really isn't the same thing as performative reading, and well. She's just not that good. She's also not bad, but she's a little affectless, a little forced. And this is how she'll get better, I guess, but it really pointed out how a mediocre narrator can make awkward writing truly thud. The dialogue in this book is, well. How do I put this? A really good, seasoned performer probably could have saved a lot of it with effort. Lafferty could not.
raanve: Tony Millionaire's Drinky Crow (Default)
[personal profile] raanve
Sooooo WisCon is this week! I'm scrambling to get everything done & in order & my deepest wish is to have lots of fun while simultaneously being quite busy at-con.

If you're attending, this post is to provide you with useful information about Jess At WisCon. If you're not, I suppose you could read it anyway. I mean. It's really up to you. (Many -- most? -- of you know me pretty well already, and indeed have spent time with me at WisCons prior. If that's the case, the info here is useful to you if you want to meet up at some point during the con.)

This is a revised edition previous years' posts, since this is my... omg twelfth WisCon?! If there is something you are wondering about or would like to ask me that I don't cover here, please ask in comments and I'll do my best to answer.

This is long let's have some cut tags.

..about me.. )

..seeing or hanging out with me at WisCon.. )

Are you attending WisCon? Will I see you there? Is this not the best con? COMMENT BELOW! \o/

* I pretty much stole my title from this Mr. Show sketch: "The Return of the Curse of the Creature's Ghost". This is actually a really good example of the kind of stuff I carry around in my brain all the time and occasionally reference without cause -- comedy sketches from a decade ago (or more - heck, the Associative Brain Quote & Reference File goes all the way back to SNL of the 70s). Fair warning. And yeah this is only a slight modification of last year's post title - I'm not clever enough today, and it remains illustrative. ;P

WisCon

May. 21st, 2017 05:05 pm
laceblade: Risa of Lovely Complex, contorting thumbs & index fingers into a heart, winking (Love*Com: Risa Heart)
[personal profile] laceblade
I am not staying at the hotel this year. We'll see whether I end up deciding that's TERRIBLE or not. I justified it last year b/c I was co-chairing, but this year I have no such excuse lol.

I am not on any panels. I will appear on stage briefly during dessert salon/GOH speeches.

This year, unlike last year, I do hope to attend some panels, though.

For the first time since I started going, I think, I have not taken any time off from work. Having been on vacation for the entire month of April, I felt too guilty to request any, lol.
This means that I will not be around for the Gathering or any of the first programming items, but shouldn't affect much else.
I'll likely miss the GOH readings at A Room of One's Own Thursday as well, because I'll be horseback riding.

This is my 9th WisCon, but my 10th anniversary of when I first attended!

I don't discuss this much outside of locked entries, but I've not been in a great place mentally this past week or so. So if I seem subdued, it's not you; it's me.

Culinary

May. 21st, 2017 08:19 pm
oursin: Frontispiece from C17th household manual (Accomplisht Lady)
[personal profile] oursin

Bread made during the week: a brown wheatgerm loaf that seems somehow a bit bland.

Saturday breakfast rolls: basic buttermilk, 50/50 strong white/white spelt flour.

Today's lunch: sea bass fillets marinated in whisky + avocado oil + tayberry vinegar + salt & pepper, and smoked over hickory chips; served with garlic roasted purple sprouting and tenderstem broccoli, oven fried sweet potato chips, seasoned with garam masala, and fine asparagus healthy-grilled in pumpkin seed oil and sprinkled with elderflower vinegar.

lightreads: a partial image of a etymology tree for the Indo-European word 'leuk done in white neon on black'; in the lower left is (Default)
[personal profile] lightreads
When the Moon Was Ours

2/5. A girl with a complicated past grows roses from a wound in her wrist; the local "witch" girls want the roses for their own ends.

Well, on the plus side, this is a great example of a book where representation works so much better when it's not done on the 'one and only' model. There are two trans characters in this book who are in very different places in re their identities, their bodies, and their transitions. And because there are two of them, it is so much easier to take each of them where they are, as a person, rather than – unfairly but inevitably – as some sort of comment on trans people in general, or transition in general, or or or.

On the other hand, this book is 70% symbolism by volume, with a plot tossed over top. These are not the proportions I like my fiction to have. I spent this whole book like, "Wait, that wasn't a metaphor, the pumpkin literally turned to glass? Oh-kay . . . what does that mean? What do the paper moons mean? What about the – oh, for fuck's sake."

Either this novel really ought to have been novelette length, at most, or it is so so so so not for me. Or both.

Low-bandwidth reading page

May. 21st, 2017 09:59 am
jesse_the_k: Hands open print book with right side hollowed out to hole iPod (Alt format reader)
[personal profile] jesse_the_k
I read from this link

http://www.dreamwidth.org/mobile/read

Which has no graphics at all, and when you click through you're automatically in style=light

(And if a post doesn't have a title, then this displays the initial words of the body.)

(no subject)

May. 21st, 2017 08:42 am
skygiants: Jadzia Dax lounging expansively by a big space window (daxanova)
[personal profile] skygiants
Having temporarily taken a break from lengthy space operas about terrible wars within ongoing franchises after finishing DS9, [personal profile] innerbrat and I have now started watching through Star Wars: The Clone Wars. I'm going to try to stop to write up about every ten episodes for anyone who is interested in following along on this moderately lengthy journey.

For the record, going in, here is my knowledge of The Clone Wars as picked up via tumblr osmosis:
- there are clones
- Anakin has an apprentice named Ahsoka and we all love her
- Obi-Wan might have a romance with a planetary leader because that's just what Jedi do, apparently
- there is a Complicated and Tragic plot about Ahsoka's ruined relationship with the Jedi order that allows her to survive to appear in Star Wars: Rebels

That's it! That's all I know. Other than what happens in these first ten episodes of Season 1 )
copracat: Amelia Post grinning (amelia)
[personal profile] copracat
I looked at today's meme instruction and had to sit down. Metaphorically since I was already physically sitting down. A song? I said. You want just a song. Meme, my two most played playlists are called a) Cheery and b) Happy. There are songs that make me happy because they're sung sweet voiced chanteuses. There are songs that make me happy because they remind me of a time I was happy. There are songs that make me happy because they're happy. And then there's the blues, a whole genre of songs that make me happy because they're sad. So. A song.

9.A song that makes you happy: Grace Kelly - MIKA

I love the little girl in the yellow frock rocking out, like she's the singer's inner self, like she's me.



Okay, two.

That's Life - Megan Hilty & Katherine McPhee )

music meme topics )

(no subject)

May. 21st, 2017 10:38 am
oursin: Brush the Wandering Hedgehog by the fire (Default)
[personal profile] oursin
Happy birthday, [personal profile] lotesse and [personal profile] nilchance!

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