Born on this day in 1321 to King Edward II of England and Isabella of France, Joan of the Tower (my toy,wikipedia). Married David II of Scotland when she was 7, the marriage was not very happy and they had no children.
I haven't seen Inside Out (yet), so I haven't actually read past the first couple of paragraphs, but: "The Science of ‘Inside Out’". "As scientists who have studied emotion for decades, we were delighted to be asked. We ended up serving as scientific consultants for the movie, “Inside Out,” which was recently released. / Our conversations with Mr. Docter and his team were generally about the science related to questions at the heart of the film: How do emotions govern the stream of consciousness? How do emotions color our memories of the past? What is the emotional life of an 11-year-old girl like? (Studies find that the experience of positive emotions begins to drop precipitously in frequency and intensity at that age.)"
"27 Amazing Charts That Will Turn You Into A Baking Whiz". Oh, Buzzfeed titles. Never change. (Actually, no. PLEASE CHANGE.)
Lifehacker: "This Graphic Shows You the Many Ways to Make Real Ramen".
"Farewell to America: After 12 years in the US, Gary Younge is preparing to depart – as the country’s racial frictions seem certain to spark another summer of conflict". "Raising a black child in a racist society poses a very particular set of challenges. On the one hand, you want them to be proud and confident of who they are. On the other, you have to teach them that they are vulnerable precisely because of who they are, in the knowledge that awareness of that vulnerability just might save their life. We are trying to raise self-confident children for long lives, not hashtags for slaughter."
"3D Printed Rats Make For Cheaper and More Ethical Dissections".
"Sony's Robotic Dogs Are Dying A Slow And Heartbreaking Death". (I have a real soft spot for the Aibo; during scruloose's and my time living in Toronto, tamakun first dreamed of and then acquired his, which he named TK.)
--"6 Ways Nature Cleans Up Our Messes Better Than We Do". [Cracked.com]
--"17 Reasons Your Cat Is Giving You An Attitude". (What's with the "an" in the title? Is that a regional thing? We'd just say "giving you attitude".)
--"Scientists Create Holograms that you can Touch".
--"I Read The New “Fifty Shades” Book, And It Is Absolutely Batshit. E. L. James’ new book is called Grey. We need to talk about how crazy this book is. NSFW language ahead – including the phrase “music to my dick”."
--"This 10-Story Factory Has Been Transformed Into An Incredible Adult Playground".
--"Here’s what your kitchen will look like in 2025, according to IKEA".
--"The Light Show in the Great Smokey [sic.] Mountains: Today, the rare Smoky Mountain fireflies are a tourist attraction. Twenty years ago, science didn’t believe they existed."
--"When America's Librarians Went To War".
--"How Do We Break Our Internet Habit and Read More Books?" (Posted for interest, not because the article holds THE ANSWER.)
--"How The Deepest, Darkest Secrets Of Moms Shape The Products In Aisle 6". "While working in advertising for 12 years, Wintsch witnessed the creation of campaigns depicting the most idealized version of moms based on outdated (and incorrect) notions of motherhood. 'It's really outdated. It's archaic,' she said. 'It really bothers me—it bothered me so much that I created a company to fix it.'"
(Amusement for the day: hashtagging my related tweets with #FlyingMissDaisy.)
Then we came home, ordered and ate pizza, and each finished up some freelance work that was due. Ginny then went to bed like a sensible person (or at least like a morning person who's been running on fumes and far too little sleep), and here I am, toppled into the internet. It happens.
Tomorrow and Monday I have to work a LOT, because I have a script due Monday, and we really shouldn't talk about how much I have left to do. >.> Wish me luck? And focus?
scruloose and Kas are over halfway home and safely stopped for the night, and will be here sometime tomorrow. Yay! I wasn't really sure how Jinksy would react when I arrived home without scruloose, but he seemed to take it fairly well, especially since I brought Ginny with me, which offers bonus distraction. Both he and Claudia spent the first couple of hours following us around--not right on our heels, but not subtly, either.
There's so much I always miss about Toronto as soon as we leave (or preemptively, to be precise), beyond the obvious problem where I'm always missing somebody. Right now I'm especially missing shiroiko, who drove us to the airport with her Jason, and who's understandably taking Ginny's leaving really hard. ;_; But OTOH, I'm looking forward to seeing wildpear (whenever that works out--in terrible timing, she has out-of-town visitors coming in) and other local folks.
To aim for a positive note, some tangible things (other than people and my cats) that make me glad to be back in Halifax:
1) The fact that I'm about to sleep in my own bed for the first time in a fortnight.
2) Getting to wash my hair in local water (some parts of Nova Scotia have water that my hair hates even more than it hates Toronto water, but my hair gets along fairly well with city water).
3) The fact that I won't be on my feet constantly now that I'm home; I like it when I spend a ton of time walking around in Toronto, but my feet have been sore for days now.
4) Being back to Mahir (my desktop system), with his properly clacky keyboard and superior-to-Lincoln's specs.
5) The prospect of catching up on the shows I'm behind on (Penny Dreadful and Hannibal, especially; I think I'm two episodes behind on both), and of getting my hair dyed and cut (having failed to do either before we left).
I didn't want to answer this at first. Star Trek might have started in the mind of Gene Roddenberry, but it was hugely collaborative. The universe that I fell in love with was the product of literally thousands of people. A lot of nuances of Vulcan culture came from Leonard Nimoy. The Star Trek movies, the good ones, were largely written and directed by Nicholas Meyer. The later series had very little input from Roddenberry, if any.
All of that said, it wouldn't have happened at all if Roddenberry hadn't had the idea, and hadn't kept on pushing until it went somewhere.
So, thanks, Gene, for getting the ball rolling.
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Died on this day in 1814 aged 50 Prince Emich of Leiningen (my toy,wikipedia). Emich's second wife married (after his death) Prince Edward of Kent and was the mother of Queen Victoria. So, sort of Victoria's step-father, only he was dead before her mother married her father. His second wife was his first wife's nice, which is a bit eurgh. I want to be able to draw A NICE GRAPH, but then along come people who do THINGS LIKE THIS and suddenly it is a very messy graph indeed (the whole enormous mess, only a bit cut down is at http://www.chiark.greenend.org.uk/~naat
Born on this day in 1473 to Henry III, Landgrave of Upper Hesse and Anna of Saxony, Matilda of Hesse (my toy,wikipedia). Grandmother of Anne of Cleves (wife, briefly, of Henry VIII). Matilda married Duke John of Cleves after he had had *63* children with various mistresses and been nicknames "the babymaker". Together they had 3 children, the eldest (John) succeeded him as Duke of Cleves and was the father of Anne. Cleves was at the time a part of the Holy Roman Empire, the territory that was the Duchy of Cleves is now partly in Germany and partly in the Netherlands.
TOS - Kirk, McCoy, and Spock. You can't beat the classics. The interplay and the verbal sparring was always enjoyable. Sadly, fandom tends to turn it into Kirk and Spock plus McCoy, but you really need all three as equal partners to get the full effect. Honorable mention goes to Spock and Uhura. I love the scene with the two of them making music together in Charlie X.
TNG - Data and everyone else. It's a bit of a cop out answer, but pretty much any friendship scene was better if it had Data in it. He had the ability to bring out the best in everyone.
DS9 - Jadzia and Kira. I like that their friendship is based on just really enjoying each other's company. That sounds obvious, but so many TV friendships are based on tragic shared history or repeated bouts of saving each other's lives. Jadzia and Kira do have some of that, but mostly it's just a matter of wanting to get together in the holosuite, or just grab a drink at Quark's.
VOY - Seven and Tuvok. Neither of them wanted the other to be anything but what they were. I imagine that was refreshing for both of them.
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Born on this day in 1709 to King Frederick I of Prussia and Sophia of Hanover, Princess Wilhelmine of Prussia (my toy,wikipedia). Grand-daughter of George I. She was (by marriage) the Margravine of Brandenburg-Bayreuth, and expended much time/money/effort making Bayreuth really nice. Bayreuth is now famous for the Wagner festival, although he was born in 1813, so I assume they never met.
An extension of my “Joan tells Mary about the kidnapping” fic, covering the events of S3. It made me cry, as all the best Joan & Mary fics should do.
A sequel for my Joan & Sherlock handcuffed together story, providing excellent answers to the questions I left hanging in that story, along with just-right Joanbell:
An elaboration on exactly how Joan's Euglossa watsonia came to be Charlotte’s Webb fans:
Procession of the Species (Reading the Bees Remix)
Elementary, Ms. Hudson & Euglossa watsonia
“Although THE BEST BEE FIC EVER has EXACTLY THE RIGHT AMOUNT OF PLOT one or two details remain an exercise for the reader. But who likes to exercise all the time, am I right? So here’s a little something for all you lazy slobs who can’t be bothered to do your own homework once in a while. sheesh.”
based on THE BEST BEE FIC EVER
And a remix of one of my vids into a fic! Everyone has been ignoring this one because the fandom is so obscure, but hey it has lesbian sex and also trapeze, what more could you possibly be looking for?
There were a lot of great panels. I'm lousy at con writeups. Sorry.
2) I've been reading The Philosopher Kings, by Jo Walton. I have no idea how I'm going to review this book. It's amazingly good, and very much like the first one (The Just City), but it's done a time job to carefully avoid basically doing the first book over again Bigger Stronger More Complicated, and is instead moving on to the implications and fallout from the first. Highly recommended. Nothing else like it out there.
3) Chores. Sort of? I try to keep up on chores. More or less.
4) Writing. Sort of? Conventions eat my brain, and the summer slowly drains my willpower. We'll see how it goes. But I have figured out the overarching structural issues with Elf & Dragon, at least somewhat, which should help when I finally get out the sculptural chainsaw and go at it.
5) Video games! Rune Factory 4 is adorable, and for once I've gotten far enough into a Rune Factory game to be really thoroughly into the plot. I'm not sure if this one is shorter than usual, or if I just played an awful lot of it in airports recently, or if it's because I set the difficulty to easy so I'm cutting through dungeons like an enchanted knife through artisanal butter made from buffamoo-harvested milk. Probably a bit of each.
I don't think I've had more than one or two full nights of sleep since we got to Toronto, mostly because I keep waking up before my alarm. (Or, the night before last, because scruloose was out with our most gourmand friend, who's been waiting literally years for us to say, "Okay, choose whatever restaurant you want and scruloose will go with you, no questions asked" [apparently it was INCREDIBLE, and also not at all my thing. There was a lot of pigs' blood involved], and then we had to get up early to go to Ajax for wedding ceremony #2. ^_^)
So here, have another round of linkspam:
Melinda Beasi, who's responsible for Manga Bookshelf, is also a voice and theater teacher at Act Too Studio, which is currently fundraising via Indiegogo: Act Too Studio Opera Workshop: The Medium. Melinda (disclaimer: who's a friend of mine) is dedicated to and passionate about her work, and if you've had any contact with her, you probably know she's generally awesome and always doing awesome things. So if you feel so inclined, chip in to support teenagers singing opera!
On a similar note: I linked this last week, but ICYMI, Sparkler Monthly Magazine is Kickstarting their third year!
trope_bingo sign-ups are open, with some changes from previous rounds: "We have one main list of 75 tropes that will be the base list, but since many people had issues with working with AU and Kink type tropes we broke them into short add on lists instead of including them in the main list. There is also an add on list for the visual arts inclined, all of these short lists are optional, take them or leave them as suits you. How you use them is up to you as well. / We are also allowing more tropes to be opted out of this round. You can opt out of no more than 12, yes one dozen, tropes. Keep in mind that that the more you cut, the less choices there are for your card but at 62 there shouldn't be any repeats on a 25 space card.".
At ANN: "Avengers: Age of Ultron Episode 0 1-Shot Manga's Main Color Visual Posted". Yes, that is indeed a manga prequel to AoU.
Jason Thompson is wrapping up his "House of 1000 Manga column at ANN after five years of writing it with Shaenon Garrity, and lists ten of his favorite manga titles that he reviewed. (Garrity posted her farewell and list of ten favorites last week.)
(Have you read her post about Basara? Amazing manga.)
I haven't seen Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell (yet?), so I haven't read sovay's post about it. But based on sovay's other film/TV posts, it'll be well worth reading. (Did you know she has a film-review Patreon? She does!)
firecat has posted not one but two link roundups for Mad Max: Fury Road. (Spoilers.)
metaphortunate made a thoughtful post on Fury Road the other day.
"Classic shojo manga Kodomo no Omocha getting first new chapter in 17 years".
Via yohjideranged, , there's going to be a two-part live-action film adaptation of Chihayafuru. (Which I haven't read yet, but shiroiko tells me I really should.)
Torontoist's "Reel Toronto" column tracks down various shooting locations for season 3 of Orphan Black. (Some spoilers, of course.) "The show has a rather convoluted relationship with Toronto. It’s been broadly implied we’re in the city and you can see Ontario plates and Canadian money and yet they never say it outright and many locations are not at all what they’re supposed to be. For example, the first season established that suburbanite Alison lives in the fictional neighbourhood of “Bailey Downs,” ostensibly in Scarborough. The filming location, however, has been the Angus Glen neighbourhood of Markham." (Yeah, I remember Ginny's reaction when the show claimed that was Scarborough. *g* I kinda wonder if they used "Scarborough" entirely so they could say "Scarberia".)
[Speaking of chameleon!Toronto, the article also mentions "We’ve seen the historic Schmidt-Dalziel barn in a couple of things recently, including last season’s Hannibal. (It’s sometimes accessible during Doors Open and it’s, like, one of the biggest Pennsylvania-style barns in North America so check it out, if you’re into barns and stuff!) This lovely house is on the same property.".]
rmc28 is looking for Book/comic recommendations for 8-9 year olds.
Via muccamukk: "an index of Ta-Nehisi Coates' posts on the US Civil War and Reconstruction, from 2008 to present". (Shamelessly copying muccamukk's link text.)
Via giandujakiss, "Revamped Bubble Wrap Loses Its Pop". End of an era, y'all. "Sealed Air, maker of the iconic packaging material, is rolling out a new flat version to cut down on the high costs of shipping air." [WSJ link, so the full article isn't accessible to non-subscribers.]
"6 Well-Known Health Tips (That Don't Work At All)". [Cracked.com]
"37 People Who Are Worse At Cooking Than You". (We have a friend who's guilty of #19. Lookin' at you, Chaos. [Who doesn't read this.])
At the Mary Sue: "It’s Harder Than It Should Be to Have a Socially Conscious Cell Phone".
( A lengthy aside about crossovers in general. )
What would I cross over with Star Trek? Pretty much any fandom that doesn't already have SF elements and is set in more or less modern times are most likely to happen.
Have a few plot bunnies, that anyone is welcome to grab because I will almost certainly never write them:
1. Scrubs. Bashir (or any ST doctor really) ends up back in time and has to go undercover as a doctor at Sacred Heart to rescue one of his colleagues before antiquated 21st century medicine kills him or her.
2. The West Wing. Donna ends up in the 24th century. The White House is a museum. POTUS is a largely ceremonial position. And there are aliens running the planet.
3. Burn Notice. The client of the week has green blood.
4. Call the Midwife. It might be an alien baby, but it's still a baby, and Trixie has a job to do.
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Photos of cats in kimono.
"Stray Kitten Befriends Famous Wildlife Photographer By Using Irresistible Cat Tricks".
At Jezebel: "New Study, Also Everyone You Know: Dudes Lie When They Feel Weak". "The study’s co-author, Benoit Monin, says both studies reinforce the idea that “men are under very strong prescriptive norms to be a certain way, and they work hard to correct the image they project when their masculinity is under threat.” [...] These sorts of assumptions about gender make for some of the thorniest relationship problems, because in order to sort them out, you need an incredible degree of awareness in the first place. So many men learn compensatory behaviors—stoicism, aggression, flat-out lying—from so early on that these traits become ingrained to the point of permanence."
lizcommotion posted "Why you should talk to your kids about consent early, because sex-parts don't just turn on at 18". [Content warning: non-graphic accounts of sexual harassment and assault.]
Via jjhunter: "Why Are There So Many More Disabled People Now?" "A common refrain that is often espoused these days by the able-bodied is, “Why are there so many more disabled children today than when I was growing up?” To many, the seeming “epidemic” levels of disabilities such as autism, ADHD, learning disabilities, and so on is frighteningly high. Looking to answers such as an abundance of pesticides, vaccines, ultrasounds, “chemicals” and other culprits is increasingly common as people search for an answer... the answer to the burning question of why there are so many more disabled children now is this: They used to be institutionalized and were kept out of society at much higher rates."
At Everyday Feminism:
--Comic: "What If We Treated All Consent Like Society Treats Sexual Consent?"
--"The Media Is Lying to You About Men’s Emotions, And It’s Really F*cked Up – Here’s a Healthier View".
--"Gaslighting Is a Common Victim-Blaming Abuse Tactic – Here Are 4 Ways to Recognize It in Your Life".
Cosplay: "This Asgardian Iron Man armor is better than anything Tony Stark has".
"[Japanese g]overnment begins study into tattoo bans in public baths".
--"Forget Pink Plastic Flamingos, These Lawn Ornaments Are Where It's At". (Spoiler: dragons!)
--"Discarded pet goldfish are multiplying and getting kind of ginormous, officials say". (The New Zealand Herald...talking about Canada.)
--Entertaining washing instruction labels from clothing.
--"10 Warm Facts About Huskies".
This may be worth bookmarking if, like me, you're aging and unmarried.
I found this essay by a young Rwandan woman to be amazing: honest, blunt, heart-breaking but not pitiful, and strangely hopeful about human resiliency. Do read it. (Link via MeFi)
Oh, god, if Scott Walker is elected president we're doomed.This is a detailed look at Walker's agenda w/rt labor rights, and the facts behind the assertion that killing unions is better for public budgets. The killer quote, from my pov: [A] President Walker would adopt the views of his fellow Republicans in Washington toward federal workers, which these days can be characterized as "Off with their heads." In the wake of revelations about egregious backlogs for appointments at some Veterans Affairs hospitals-backlogs caused, again, by too few federal employees, in this case primary care doctors-Senator John McCain led a campaign to make it easier to fire poorly performing federal managers, and then pressed to fire them faster. Other Republicans are campaigning to transform the Senior Executive Service into at-will employment, which would allow political officials to fire the most senior careerists without cause. Meanwhile, House Republicans are pushing to substantially downsize the federal workforce, including a plan to allow federal agencies to hire just one new worker for every three who leave. It's easy to see a President Walker aggressively championing this agenda.
In other news, have a really lovely review of the Raksura novels by Martha Wells. Everything Foz says here is true.
If you feel like getting mildly peeved, Kate Elliott started a discussion on Twitter today when she quoted someone anonymously saying, "Outside of YA it's near-impossible to find a female main character in modern adult Fantasy". I look at my bookshelves and my Calibre window, and I just shake my head at how some people can be so willfully ignorant.
This reminds me of my long-delayed compilation of epic fantasy written by women. I should probably dust that off and post it somewhere.
I stumbled across a new show on the PBS Hulu channel, looks like another British import: The Crimson Field, about a British military field hospital during WWI. I'm a sucker for that sort of thing, so I watched two episodes. I like the cast well enough, and it has some diversity, but I'm disappointed that, unlike Call the Midwife, which involves all sorts of people trying to get by as best they can, this show has decided to create a Bad Guy. And it just so happens that this Bad Guy is the single older woman on the show, so it is kind of disgruntling for me. I may watch a few more, as they come, but (sigh).
Current reading: Europe in Autumn by Dave Hutchinson. I don't recall where I found the recommendation for this (possibly in James Nicoll's LJ comments), but I'm really enjoying it. In the not-too-distant future, the EU and Russia have both broken up into dozens of small political entities, and naturally as a result there's a lot of political and economic imbalance. Our hero Rudi, a chef in part of what was once Poland, gets recruited as a courier for sensitive (read: illegal) documents and materials. And that's as far as I've gotten, but the wry voice, vivid characterizations (Fabio, the master-spy, complains incessantly about the excellent food Rudi cooks for him, and rearranges Rudi's furniture every day), and blackly-humorous commentary on politics and ethnicity are really entertaining. I don't know if the narrative itself will hold up, but so far it's quite good.
Just Finished: Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater. I liked it well enough, but I wasn't really onboard with the redemption of Mr. Gray. That felt a lot too easy.
Up next: Really need to get back to Leviathan Wakes. Or Kalpa Imperial. Or Rebecca, for book club.
Happy long weekend, for those who get one! What will you be reading/watching in your free time?
Born on this day in 1868 to King Edward VII of the United Kingdom and Alexandra of Denmark, Princess Victoria of the United Kingdom (my toy,wikipedia). Victoria never married, possibly because her parents wanted to keep her around to keep them company (urgh, parents), although possibly just because she didn't want to. She lived in Buckinghamshire where she became president of the local horticultural society.
Galaxy Quest, of course, for being funny and smart, but also laughing with us and not at us.
Honorable mention goes to the Stargate SG1 episode "200". Everything about it is brilliant, from "the singularity is about to explode" to Sam's eyelash blink to Teal'c and his chest-framing shirt to Cam and his over-long pauses.
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