(no subject)

Jun. 22nd, 2017 09:40 am
telophase: (Default)
[personal profile] telophase
Well, I work about two miles away from this zoo, so I could go and be disdained by this giraffe calf in person.

Theoretically. The air is about the temperature of boiling right now and the idea of actually setting foot on zoo grounds is not that tempting, really, even with the possibility of being personally disdained.
rydra_wong: Lee Miller photo showing two women wearing metal fire masks in England during WWII. (Default)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
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).

CORRECT ACTION

Jun. 21st, 2017 08:18 pm
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: 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.

arg dammit

Jun. 20th, 2017 01:01 pm
telophase: (Default)
[personal profile] telophase
just learned, after nuking my frozen tv-dinner-type lunch but before eating it, that pineapple has the same effect as grapefruit on antibiotics, especially those in the family that the I'm taking is in. Cooking may denature the enzyme that has the effect, but I can't get a specific answer as to whether or not 3 minutes of nuking (and whatever prep it might have had before) would destroy it.

Given that I'm allergic to a cousin of this AB* and that the bad effect is that it slows the elimination of it from the body, it's very much not worth risking it, especially as the last bad AB reaction I had kept me out of work for a very unhappy week. Dammit, it smells so good, too.


* both doc and pharmacist are well aware, and I have been given strict instructions to keep an eye on certain symptoms and phone immediately if they show up.

eta: and of course the library cafe isn't carrying the usual salads and sushi since it's summer. so i have a thing of instant oatmeal for lunch. I also brought cheese sticks, so it's not all I'm having, and we start our conversational Italian class tonight through campus' extended ed program, so we'll be eating dinner early. It's just Not Satisfying when I had my heart set on black bean chicken with pineapple sauce. Bah.

Oh, my heart (again)

Jun. 20th, 2017 05:28 pm
rydra_wong: the illuminated Sarajevo haggadah (sarajevo haggadah)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
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

FMK: Fantasy by Women

Jun. 19th, 2017 01:57 pm
rachelmanija: (Book Fix)
[personal profile] rachelmanija
Please feel free to comment! I have not read anything by any of these writers but Johnson.

Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 60


The Sword of Winter, by Marta Randall. In the cold and dangerous land of Cherek, emerging from an era of magic and confronted by technological advancements, Lord Gambin of Jentesi lies dying and chaos reigns.

View Answers

Fling
20 (55.6%)

Marry
6 (16.7%)

Kill
10 (27.8%)

A Rumor of Gems, by Ellen Steiber. Enter the port city of Arcato: an old and magical town set somewhere in our modern world, a town where gemstones have begun to mysteriously appear . . . gemstones whose mystical powers aren't mere myth or legend but frighteningly real, casting their spells for good and ill.

View Answers

Fling
15 (40.5%)

Marry
7 (18.9%)

Kill
15 (40.5%)

Travel Light, by Naomi Mitchison. The story of Halla, a girl born to a king but cast out onto the hills to die. She lives among bears; she lives among dragons. But the time of dragons is passing, and Odin All-Father offers Halla a choice: Will she stay dragonish and hoard wealth and possessions, or will she travel light?

View Answers

Fling
21 (40.4%)

Marry
24 (46.2%)

Kill
7 (13.5%)

Nemesis, by Louise Cooper. Princess Anghara had no place in the Forbidden Tower, and no business tampering with its secrets. But she did, and now the seven demons are loose and her world is cursed, prey to the wrath of the Earth Goddess.

View Answers

Fling
16 (40.0%)

Marry
6 (15.0%)

Kill
18 (45.0%)

Racing the Dark, by Alaya Dawn Johnson. Lana, a teenaged girl on a nameless backwater island, finds an ominous blood-red jewel that marks her as someone with power, setting in motion events that drive her away from her family and into an apprenticeship with a mysterious one-armed witch.

View Answers

Fling
34 (73.9%)

Marry
11 (23.9%)

Kill
1 (2.2%)

My Soul to Keep, by Tananarive Due. When Jessica marries David, he is everything she wants in a family man: brilliant, attentive, ever youthful. Yet she still feels something about him is just out of reach. Soon, as people close to Jessica begin to meet violent, mysterious deaths, David makes an unimaginable confession: More than 400 years ago, he and other members of an Ethiopian sect traded their humanity so they would never die, a secret he must protect at any cost. Now, his immortal brethren have decided David must return and leave his family in Miami.

View Answers

Fling
23 (53.5%)

Marry
10 (23.3%)

Kill
10 (23.3%)

rachelmanija: (Book Fix)
[personal profile] rachelmanija
I’m afraid I did not like this at all. In fact, it was the first FMK book that I didn’t finish—I ditched it at about the halfway mark. And it’s a very short book, too: 133 pages.

Gabriel is a mason’s apprentice in medieval England. The mason is cruel, so when a troupe of traveling Mystery players comes to town, Gabriel is delighted to briefly escape his wretched life by watching the play. Then, when the mason sadistically tries to chop off his giant mop of beautiful blonde curls that Gabriel’s lost mother told him to never cut, Gabriel flees and is taken in by the players, who whisk him away and cast him as an angel.

Gabriel assumes the man playing God is wonderful and the man playing Lucifer is terrible. But no! Garvey, who plays God, uses Gabriel to create fake, exploitative “healing” miracles which he convinces Gabriel are real. Lucie (Lucifer) is unhappy about this, but that only makes Gabriel think he must be bad.

I have no idea how old Gabriel was supposed to be. At the beginning I assumed he was around twelve, but later I decided he must be closer to ten because he was so stupid and naïve. Then he got even stupider and I wondered if he could possibly be seven or eight, or if that was way too young to be an apprentice mason. Not that young children are stupid, but the less you know about the world, the more likely you are to take everything at 100% face value, as Gabriel does.

In a totally unsurprising turn of events, Gabriel is eventually shocked to learn that people are different from the roles they play. This is exactly as anvillicious as it sounds. And while I often love books in which the reader knows more than the characters, I like it when the reason is that the characters are not privy to information or context that the reader knows, not because the characters are too stupid to pick up on incredibly obvious stuff. I don’t mean to call characters with cognitive disabilities stupid, as “intellectually disabled character fails to understand what’s going on” is a well-populated subgenre. (Which I also dislike.) I’m referring to non-disabled characters who are oblivious because they just are.

It's not that I think a child has to be stupid to be tricked by adults. Even a very bright child (or adult) could be fooled into thinking they're a miracle-worker by a clever con man. It's that the way it's written, from Gabriel's POV, makes him seem like a total idiot.

However, that’s not why I gave up on the book. The reason was the incredibly unpleasant emotional atmosphere: Gabriel smugly stupid, Garvey and the mason smugly awful, Lucie and his daughter sadly suffering (with a side of smugness, because they know the real deal.) I disliked the lot of them and did not want to be around any of them. Which is too bad, because I liked the backdrop of medieval Mystery players a lot.

The prose was good, but not good enough to make me keep reading. However, it won the Whitbread award, so my opinion may be very much in the minority.

A Little Lower Than the Angels

So another morning in London happened

Jun. 19th, 2017 03:55 pm
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
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.

In Borough Market

Jun. 18th, 2017 10:18 pm
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
-- which is normally not open on Sundays, but was today because they're trying to make up lost days and also presumably picking up business from the Bankside Great Get Together --

-- there is a stall called Greedy Goat selling goat's milk icecream and they had liquorice-and-blackcurrant icecream and it is the best thing known to humanity. Yes very hipster I DON'T CARE.

(The Great Get Together was charming {rather like a church fete on a nationwide scale, lacking only the Church of England and the tombolas}, and exactly what we need right now, Crossbones is extraordinary, and my brain is fried by the heat and I'm going to bed now.)

Today

Jun. 18th, 2017 01:10 pm
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
Brexit negotions start tomorrow even though we don't actually have a government, and those theoretically in charge are still pushing for leaving the customs union, ending freedom of movement, etc..

The Guardian: Big business leaders press Theresa May to rethink hard Brexit

David Davis, the Brexit secretary, says on Sunday that he would head into Monday’s Brexit talks aiming to “secure a deal that works for all parts of the United Kingdom”, but signalled that the plan was still to leave the customs union and reduce immigration.

So, still "contact your MP" time.

Grenfell:

https://secure.thebiggive.org.uk/grenfell is still doubling all donations until match funds run out (and have also started releasing funds in emergency cash via the groups that have established themselves on the frontline, i.e. not via RBKC who are apparently continuing to fail to provide co-ordination, organization, or much of anything)

The Home Office are helping Mohammad Alhajali's family get to the UK, so no more need to sign that petition.

https://grenfellsupport.wordpress.com looks very useful.

North Kensington Law Centre are providing legal education and support to residents affected by the fire: their donations page -- this would be a good thing to donate to as there may be issues with the general funds being used for legal support.

RBKC have £270 million in reserves. As far as I can see, that means they could afford to buy nice property in North Kensington at market prices to rehouse the survivors.

A lot of stuff is happening right now

Jun. 16th, 2017 09:43 pm
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
Grenfell:

https://secure.thebiggive.org.uk/grenfell is doubling all donations (until match funds run out)

Petitions:

https://www.change.org/p/home-office-get-grenfell-tower-victim-s-parents-to-the-uk
https://www.change.org/p/kensington-and-chelsea-london-borough-council-ensure-that-all-grenfell-tower-tenants-residents-are-rehoused-there-when-it-is-rebuilt
https://speakout.38degrees.org.uk/campaigns/2277

Right now, lobbying government to ensure that all survivors and people displaced by the fire are rehoused within the borough seems to be a thing worth doing. As a borough resident, I am hassling my councillors.

Also hassling Alok Sharma, as he's issued a statement that all survivors will be rehoused within the "local area" but hasn't consulted with the council or given any indication that the government will help with funding for this (either directly or by lifting the benefit caps which make it so hard for people to find housing in the borough).

I will not be hassling my new MP as she's hit the ground running (and housing and planning are her thing to begin with), but a card of support may be in order.

And:

It's a year today since MP Jo Cox was murdered by a white supremacist terrorist. This weekend is The Great Get Together, started by her family in her memory: neighbourhood celebrations all across the UK intended to bring communities and neighbours together. I'm hoping to go with a friend to the Bankside one on Sunday (they have a "quiet zone" in Crossbones).

Also:

Borough Market is open again, and full of Londoners aggressively Defying Terrorism by purchasing delicious foods.

*secret autism signal*

Jun. 16th, 2017 09:57 am
rydra_wong: Lee Miller photo showing two women wearing metal fire masks in England during WWII. (Default)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
Okay, so [personal profile] yhlee has been diagnosed with Asperger's a few months ago and is feeling a bit *flail* and unsure what to do about it (having not been given much in the way of resources beyond a book aimed at teens).

I know there's a metric fuckton of people on the autistic spectrum on DW, so I wanted to put out a call for people to raise your hands if you're on the spectrum and don't mind talking about it, talk about how finding out about being on the spectrum changed things for you (if it did) and the process of adjusting to a diagnosis, discuss coping strategies, rec books you've found useful, websites, bloggers you follow, people on other platforms, etc..

To get the party started: for me, I think the hugest thing has been having vocabulary and concepts for things I'd never had words for before, and just knowing they're things:

sensory overload (and overload in general)

tactile defensiveness and difficulty with proximity (a HUGE issue for me personally)

meltdowns (best analysis I've found of how these happen is in Ross Greene's The Explosive Child, otherwise known as the book my mother most wishes she'd had during my childhood)

executive function (and lack thereof)

difficulty with change (and usefulness of schedules, predictability)

(also just knowing that even if I was the one who chose to change something in the first place, my brain will default to DIFFERENT BAD WRONG at first and that this doesn't actually mean the thing is necessarily BAD WRONG, I just have to allow myself time to adapt before deciding on mature consideration whether it is in fact BAD WRONG) (here is [tumblr.com profile] into-the-weeds making a social story for themselves: http://into-the-weeds.tumblr.com/post/161276884349/more-my-bed-has-changed-and-that-is-okay-it )

stims (stimmmmmmmms) and all the sensory integration toys (weighted blankets have been a gift to my life)

"special interests" (in my head I used to call them my "follies" pre-diagnosis)

**********

Also, while I'm in "ONE OF US, ONE OF US" mode: also one of us is Micah Fletcher, the survivor of the three men stabbed in the Portland attack, the poet who made a video asking for people to re-focus on the girls who were the original targets rather than making a "white savior" narrative centred on the guys who stepped in to defend them. That guy. He's on the spectrum.

Once more unto the breach

Jun. 14th, 2017 03:48 pm
telophase: (Default)
[personal profile] telophase
So! Murderface decided that the house in Whiterun wasn't good enough almost immediately after buying it, and thus decided he needed to purchase land and build one. There is as of yet no mod on the PS4 (and perhaps not on any other platform, but I haven't looked) that allows you to rent out houses you are not living in for gold, which I think should be a priority for modbuilders, so it's just sitting there.

But that meant when the jarl of Falkreath summoned him to run a trivial errand, he did so because once you make nice to the Jarl he lets you buy land.

Read more... )

Grenfell Tower fire

Jun. 14th, 2017 09:37 pm
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 Evening Standard are administering an emergency appeal (there are various others on crowdfunding sites, but I don't know which are verified):

http://www.dispossessedfund.org.uk/emergency-appeal---grenfell-fire.aspx

The Guardian "what we know so far"
The Guardian liveblog

Currently the council are saying to hold off on further physical donations at the moment as all the various sports and community centres and churches acting as resources have been swamped by more than they can handle. However, anyone who wants to volunteer to help with the support effort should please contact them on 020 7361 3008 (RBKC info page) ETA: it's been changed to Grenfellvolunteers@rbkc.gov.uk .

[twitter.com profile] westwaysports (who have turned themselves into a giant emergency overnight shelter) say no more physical donations unless they ask for specific things, and that they're also currently well-supplied with volunteers.

(I don't think I can use the "poisoned trash fire" etc. tag on this one. Particularly not if it was the fucking cladding. FUCK.)

Turning off comments because this is my local area and I can't quite deal with responses on this one.

In other news, here's a petition asking for Brexit negotiations to be conducted by a multi-party committee:

http://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/brexit-negotiations-should-be-conducted-by-a-multi-party-committee

A conversation from Slack

Jun. 14th, 2017 02:02 pm
telophase: (Default)
[personal profile] telophase
telophase
have you ordered from amazon yet?

myrialux
not yet

telophase
i need dis
https://www.amazon.com/Nostepinne-Rosewood-Accessories-Nagina-International/dp/B01MZI4IY0/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1497466170&sr=8-2&keywords=nostepinne
totally not as a wizard wand
to wind yarn into center-pull balls.
and not to cast spells on you

myrialux
accio yarn

look i made a yarn

Jun. 14th, 2017 01:28 pm
telophase: (Default)
[personal profile] telophase
a bigger yarn this time

Read more... )
rydra_wong: Assorted Watergate conspirators sing along: "We're Richard Nixon's seeecret tapes club band!" (secret tapes club band)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
The Vice-President has to resign before you fire the special prosecutor counsel. Everybody knows that. There's no point doing a re-enactment if you're not going to take the details seriously.

(The article points out that Trump vents and threatens a lot of shit that he doesn't actually do. Which is good, because if he did fire Mueller you guys would have a constitutional crisis on your hands now, and ... get ready in case, I guess?)

A thing I am enjoying greatly of late

Jun. 13th, 2017 10:46 am
rydra_wong: black coat, green stripy stockings, and a strip of bare skin just above the knee (knees)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
One From The Vaults, Morgan M. Page's podcast about trans history (link goes to Soundcloud, but it's also available on iTunes and all the standard podcast sources).

[personal profile] vass hooked me by quoting from the intro to each ep: "I love history because it's my favourite kind of gossip. Scandalous, sensational, and most importantly of all, not about me," and since then I've been mainlining it.

For me it hits something of the same spot as You Must Remember This (the use of music isn't as slick, but it's early days) -- Page has something of the same arch, confiding tone as Longworth, and the same ability to balance seamlessly between the gossipy and the deeply serious, to use glamour and scandal as vehicles to look at underlying social issues. Also, fascinating stories about fascinating people.

It seems well-researched, and I appreciate how much she cites her sources and notes when there are contradictory accounts or vagueness about the historical facts. She's very thoughtful about the ways in which people's sense of their own identities may or may not fit neatly into our current categories.

But basically, really good stories, recommended to anyone who has an interest in trans/genderqueer issues and/or gender issues in general and/or feminist history and/or history in general and/or really interesting stories told really well.

Note: given that trans people have been subjected to such spectacularly awful treatment through history, it should not be a surprise that some of the episodes involve mention of rape, child sexual abuse, violence, and murder. However, it's never been graphic and I've never felt blind-sided by it (YMMV).

Feministing: The Feministing Five: Morgan M Page -- interesting interview with Page about her goals and why she chose the particular style of the podcast

The OFTV Patreon
rachelmanija: (Book Fix)
[personal profile] rachelmanija
Poll #18480 FMK: Mostly Award-Winning British children's books
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 38


Kit's Wilderness, by David Almond. Kit's family moves to an old mining town, where he and another boy search the mines for the ghosts of their ancestors. Might be fantasy? Won the Printz Award.

View Answers

Fling
15 (44.1%)

Marry
10 (29.4%)

Kill
9 (26.5%)

Bottle Boy, by Stephen Elboz. An amnesiac boy and his brother are trapped in a life of crime. Author won the Smarties Prize but not for this book.

View Answers

Fling
10 (32.3%)

Marry
5 (16.1%)

Kill
16 (51.6%)

River Boy, by Tim Bowler. Jess's probably-dying grandfather is trying to finish one last painting; Jess meets a boy who might be the one from the painting. Possibly fantasy? Won the Carnegie Award.

View Answers

Fling
11 (36.7%)

Marry
7 (23.3%)

Kill
12 (40.0%)

Ghost in the Water, by Edward Chitham. Teresa and David find a gravestone from 1860 labeled "Innocent of all Harm" and find that the dead girl's life is mysteriously linked with theirs. Filmed by BBC.

View Answers

Fling
18 (54.5%)

Marry
7 (21.2%)

Kill
8 (24.2%)

A Little Lower Than The Angels, by Geraldine McCaughrean. A medieval boy joins a theatre troupe. Whitbread Best Book of the Year.

View Answers

Fling
18 (52.9%)

Marry
13 (38.2%)

Kill
3 (8.8%)

Stone Cold, by Robert Swindells. A homeless boy in London gets caught up in a mystery of disappearing street kids. Carnegie Medal

View Answers

Fling
15 (46.9%)

Marry
8 (25.0%)

Kill
9 (28.1%)



I have never read anything by any of these authors, and in most cases have only heard of them in the sense that I own one of their books. Anyone familiar with any of them?