giandujakiss: (Default)
[personal profile] giandujakiss
Now is the time to call your Senators. Yes, certain GOP senators are particularly critical, but honestly, call yours no matter who you are or where you live. This is about protecting Medicaid, the general healthcare infrastructure in this country, and also denying Trump a win so that GOP feels more compelled to boot him out. On every level, GOP attempts to repeal ACA must be fought.

And yes, even if you called before - call again.
umadoshi: (StarCraft - Zerg symbol)
[personal profile] umadoshi
--My sleep has continued to be all over the place. Last night I managed to get to bed around 1 AM or so (IIRC) and didn't get up until 11:30 today; the night before, I was in bed by 1:15 so I could get up at a reasonable hour and [dreamwidth.org profile] scruloose, [dreamwidth.org profile] ginny_t, Kas, and I could go raspberry picking, and I managed, at a generous estimate, two hours of sleep. FUN.


--I had these notions of finishing a fic for this round of [dreamwidth.org profile] smallfandomfest, but it wraps up at the end of this month, so...ha ha ha no. ^^; But hey, I got it started and made some actual progress during [dreamwidth.org profile] nanodownunder, and unfilled [dreamwidth.org profile] smallfandomfest prompts remain available for claiming past the round when they're prompted, so it's not like I won't have another chance. I just liked the idea of doing it now.


--I haven't taken pictures yet, but when we were out watering the garden a couple of days ago, there were the beginnings of blossoms on one of the two clematis plants!


--Amidst all the political awfulness, personal stuff, cute gifs, and book-blogger chat, my Twitter feed has been full of people being gleeful about "Dream Daddy: A Dad Dating Simulator"--enough so that I briefly pretended I don't have something like 100 unplayed games and can't remember the last time I played anything and went to check it out. I was saved by an impulse buy by the fact that the game's currently Windows- and Mac-only; I do still have a Windows partition for games, but realistically, I also can't remember the last time I booted into it for anything but StarCraft. (And that wasn't terribly recently. I did buy at least the first of the SCII Nova mission packs, but I don't remember how far I got.) (Separate parenthetical: I've preordered the remastered original StarCraft, so for that, booting into Windows will undoubtedly happen. Unless it magically runs under WINE.)


--I need to keep reminding myself that Rogue One is on Netflix until I finally watch it (having literally slept through most of it in the theatre, which was not the movie's fault!). I should also rewatch TFA sometime in the next few months.


--It turns out Black Sails is shorter than I'd been thinking in two ways: I'd somehow had the impression it's five seasons, not four, and I also hadn't realized the seasons are so short (eight to ten episodes each, I think?). All of a sudden bumping it up to basically the top of my to-watch list (which seems to be a good plan, judging from how many people I know are in love with the show) is a way less daunting prospect.

Linkspam: fannish/geeky, misc.

Jul. 24th, 2017 11:19 pm
umadoshi: (lilacs 01)
[personal profile] umadoshi
Fannish/Geeky Things

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] sgamadison, an update on Stargate Origins: be aware that the new digital episodes are only going to be ten minutes each.

"A Woman, Explaining Things". [Sarah Gailey on the casting of the thirteenth Doctor]

"Towards a Definition of “Fanfiction”: 3,564 people took our survey. Here’s what we learned". [Fansplaining]

"Does God exist in the Marvel Universe?" [Salon]

"Akiko Higashimura's Princess Jellyfish Manga Ends on August 25". [ANN]


Miscellaneous

"Radical Cartography" is...hard for me to describe. Very cool things with maps...and stuff...?

"All of my work on the “Irish slaves” meme (2015–’16)". In case you ever need to debunk the "but the Irish were slaves too!" crap that some flavors of racists like to whip out.

"Gratitude for Invisible Systems: One way to improve democracy is for more people to appreciate its complex technological underpinnings".

"My Father Spent 30 Years In Prison. Now He's Out". This is lovely and heartbreaking.

"Updated Syllabus for Journalism 101". [McSweeney's]

"This Is How Tough It Can Actually Be To Follow High School Prom Dress Codes". [Buzzfeed]

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] bell, "When Your Teacher Keeps Saying You Can’t Draw Cats, But Your Paintings Are Photorealistic".

"Make a Magical Carpet Cat Hammock With an Old Towel".

"This Guy Spent A Year Exploring The Subculture Of Competitive Punning".

"How to Fall Down". [Lifehacker]

"Sapphic Stories || Around the world". "Sapphic Stories – Around the world does not intend to be a rec list that is ultimate and finalized, but just the beginning of a search for more pluralized stories. There are many other stories out there that we need to look for. Still, I believe that this post could be a nice start so that people can recognize these stories set in the places they grew up in or to know more about what it means to be sapphic in other places. This list contains F/F fiction books, books that have at least one women who feel romantic/sexual attraction to women, short stories, anthologies, and nonfiction about how it is to be LGBT+ in some places of the world."

"tim walker photographs all black cast for alice in wonderland themed pirelli calendar".

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] dine, "Superb Cut Paper Artworks by Pippa Dyrlaga".

Dice & pages

Jul. 24th, 2017 11:47 pm
schneefink: (FF Kaylee in hammock)
[personal profile] schneefink
During work I keep coming up with things I want to post about, and then when I'm home I'm too lazy and/or tired, similarly often on weekends. No vacation for me until September, most likely, but I told myself to pay attention and take a mental health day if I need it. I haven't been sick yet so I wouldn't feel bad about it.

D&D )

I recently found a book again that I'd searched for for years: "Bloodrights" by N. Lee Wood. I was prepared to be disappointed, but to my happy surprise I still like it a lot. It's harsher than I remembered, especially in regards to the cost of striving for power. The surprising reveal at the end made me look at much of it in a different way and made me like it even more. Yay trope subversion. Spoiler )
I liked Antonya and many of the other characters, and rereading the book now there are several scenes that I now much better understand the id buttons they pushed (esp. Kerrick & Morgan.) Also, something I'd forgotten about which was a nice surprise, queer people exist and are, while not completely normal, not a big deal.

Politics, because it's unavoidable: The current situation in Poland is scary, it shows how easily things like that can happen. That the protests appear to have had some success is encouraging but not more than a silver lining.
There are so many countries were democracy is under attack…
In Austria I'm trying to focus on the push-back against the surveillance program, but I'm scared about the new government after the next election. The outcome seems almost certain and it would be a bad one imo, but as we've recently seen in the UK a lot can change during an election campaign, so we'll see.
rachelmanija: (Book Fix)
[personal profile] rachelmanija
Illness memoirs, like child abuse memoirs, have a number of pitfalls. They’re about depressing topics and so are hard not to depress the reader, they’re often by people who don’t write professionally and so are not well-written, and as the subject is inherently self-focused, they can very easily come across as self-absorbed. Even if they manage to avoid those problems, many are valuable works of self-help, self-revelation, community-building, comfort, and calls to action… but are not interesting to someone who mostly wants to read a good book.

This one is a good book.

Julie Rehmeyer, a mathematician and science writer, chronicles how chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalopathy (CFS/ME) crept up on her until her entire life had vanished and she was frequently completely paralyzed. While she desperately tried to find a treatment, she instead encountered an array of quacks, snake oil salesmen, nice but useless therapists, nice but useless doctors, a patients’ community full of apparent crackpots, and medical literature claiming that it was a mental illness caused by, essentially, being lazy and whiny.

In desperation, Rehmeyer finally starts listening to some of the apparent crackpots… and when she applies her scientific training to their ideas, she finds that stripped of the bizarre terminology and excessive exclamation points, they sound surprisingly plausible. With her entire life at a dead end and nothing left to lose, she reluctantly decides to try a treatment which is both radical and distinctly woo-woo sounding.

And it works.

But unlike every other “How I cured/treated my illness by some weird method” memoir, the story doesn’t end there. Instead, she not only researches and theorizes about how and why it might have worked, she interviews scientists and doctors, and even arranges to do a double-blind experiment on herself to see if it’s a real cause of her symptoms or the placebo effect. I cannot applaud this too much. (I was unsurprised to find that every article I read on her book had a comment section claiming that her results were due to the placebo effect.)

Lots of people have suggested that I write about my own horrendous illness, crowd-sourced treatment, and jaw-dropping parade of asshole doctors who told me I was lying, a hypochondriac, or crazy. While you’re waiting… read this book instead. Though it’s not the same disease and she was treated WAY better by doctors, a lot of her experience with being beaten over the head with bad science and diagnoses based purely on sexism was very similar. As is much of her righteous rage. I am way more ragey and less accepting than she is. But still. It’s similar.

Overall, this is a well-written and honest memoir that shines a welcome light on a poorly-understood illness. Rehmeyer's perspective as a science writer provides for clarity, justifiable anger, and humor as she takes apart the morass of bad science, victim-blaming, and snake oil that surrounds chronic fatigue syndrome. It's informative without being dry, easy to read and hard to put down.

Through the Shadowlands: A Science Writer's Odyssey into an Illness Science Doesn't Understand

(no subject)

Jul. 21st, 2017 10:10 pm
staranise: A star anise floating in a cup of mint tea (Default)
[personal profile] staranise
Ah, that feels better. Mom came downstairs to oversee me dealing with my email, and while I did that she Happened to my apartment--it's all picked up and neat, clean dishes drying in the sink, and I could pull things apart and sweep and scrub bits that really needed scrubbing. And also get the emails and paperwork done.

Talk about my Mom's employment situation, which includes talk of politics and racism )

Media I'm consuming: the Holocaust, and politics in the Balkans )

Linkspam: fannish/geeky, misc.

Jul. 21st, 2017 03:02 pm
umadoshi: (ocean 01)
[personal profile] umadoshi
Fannish/Geeky Things

"Here's how the new Star Wars novels will connect to The Last Jedi: The ‘Journey to Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ books will explore details from the history of Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia". I'm just gonna jump down here to Canto Bight: "This collection of four short stories will focus on creatures from the glamorous casino world of Canto Bight, described as the galactic version of Monaco. The book, which hits stores on Dec. 5, will be written by Saladin Ahmed, Rae Carson, Mira Grant, and John Jackson Miller." [Also linked at [dreamwidth.org profile] aftertheendtimes, because awesome news is awesome.]

"Stargate Origins Series to Launch New MGM Digital Platform — Watch Teaser".

"Pacific Rim: Uprising Releases Teaser and Info on a New Crop of Jaegers". [Tor.com] And once again, we have a Jaeger with a slur (same one) in its name. :/

"Jenny, the Doctor’s Daughter, Finally Getting the Doctor Who Spinoff Adventures She Deserves" [in audio drama form]. [The Mary Sue]

"Dick Grayson vs. Toxic Masculinity". [Book Riot] [May 2017]


Miscellaneous

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] wendelah1, "Rape Choreography Makes Films Safer, But Still Takes a Toll on Cast and Crew". [Content warnings: what you'd expect from that headline.]

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] dine, "The Kitten Rental Program is Saving Lives".

"The Lost Picture Show: Hollywood Archivists Can’t Outpace Obsolescence".

"Photobucket Is Holding People's Photos For 'Ransom': The company is now charging a $400 fee to hot-link images — which will break photos on tons of old websites and blogs.". [Buzzfeed]

"The Lost Cookbooks Of Black Chefs".

"Just 19 Fascinating Things About The Hair & Makeup On 'GLOW'". [Buzzfeed]

"How Eyeliner Defines My Womanhood". "My politics and my eyeliner became inseparable. Projecting my own sense of beauty, without shame or hesitation, scared the hell out of my opponents. My look was my armor and my weaponry. / But the fight took its toll. Somewhere in my late teens, I closeted myself again, without particularly noticing that I was doing so. I stopped wearing anything that scanned as feminine. I didn't even own eyeliner for 20 years. And I said nothing when people took me for a straight, cisgender man. [...] I’ve finally recognized, over years of trial and error — mostly error — that a wildly disproportionate amount of anxiety I experience arises from dressing like a man. A couple of years ago, that anxiety was swallowing me whole. I didn’t like who I’d become, and I wanted better for myself and my family. And, thanks to the wealth of information available online, and the supportive trans and queer community I found there, I had finally found the words to describe myself."

"Not in This Day and Age? On “Feisty, Cheeky, and Rebellious” Women in History".

"Cooling the tube – Engineering heat out of the Underground". "One of the biggest problems is a side-effect of what made it possible to dig the deep level tunnels in the first place — namely the very solid and nice to tunnel through London Clay which sits under the city.

In fact, when the early tube tunnels were dug, they were so cool down there that the cool tube was seen as a respite from the summer heat on the surface. Why suffer on a bus in the heat when there’s a cool tube to take instead, said the marketing men.

So why is the Bakerloo line, once the coolest place to be, now a mobile sauna?"

(no subject)

Jul. 21st, 2017 02:12 am
staranise: A star anise floating in a cup of mint tea (Default)
[personal profile] staranise
I need to get someone to sit with me and help me deal with work email, because I've reached the point of really, SERIOUSLY intending to deal with it... and achieving as much as opening my inbox in a tab, before I have to walk away from my computer for three hours to stave off a panic attack. There's not even anything that bad there! I'm just being... blah.

In better news, I had a good fannish week for once. I started a kinkmeme! ([community profile] omgsexplease)

Next week I'm going to Ottawa to visit my girlfriend, so that's nice.

Hamilkitties!

Jul. 20th, 2017 03:09 pm
rachelmanija: (It was a monkey!)
[personal profile] rachelmanija


Curious Alex.





Erin, waiting for it.

Trope Bingo (Round 9) card

Jul. 20th, 2017 01:14 am
umadoshi: (nonfictional feeling (oraclegreen))
[personal profile] umadoshi
This week I caved and requested a [dreamwidth.org profile] trope_bingo card to go with my cards for [dreamwidth.org profile] hc_bingo and [dreamwidth.org profile] seasonofkink. This time I opted to only get prompts from the main set (I just typed "pain set". Hmm), rather than also drawing from the AU, kinks, and/or art sets.

I haven't spent much time going through and thinking in terms of which ones are most workable for me, but there are several I like. Chosen family is one of my favorite things; "huddle for warmth" is one of those reliable classic tropes that I don't think I've ever actually written; I like domestic things, so both curtain fic and food/cooking fit... We'll see.

Anyway, here's my card:
under the cut )
umadoshi: (mermaid (roxicons))
[personal profile] umadoshi
A Pair of Kickstarters

--"Mermaid Hues: A Book of Mermaids" is a project by an artist whose work I enjoyed during Mermay, so I'm glad to see it's being made available for purchase!

--Sparkler Monthly just launched their Kickstarter for year 5: "Twelve more issues of women-oriented, LGBT+ friendly webcomics, light novels, and audio dramas in our digital magazine!" Their Kickstarter page includes a lot of info on the kind of work they do and publish, and links to a free downloadable Sparkler Starter Bundle.

(I do have to note that I'm friends with several of the founders/editors [and have proofread a few of their print volumes], but that means I can tell you with confidence that they bring a LOT of experience and passion to the table as long-term manga-industry professionals and as enthusiastic, thoughtful fans of female-gaze-focused Japanese and Japanese-style media.)


Cute Stuff

"10+ Times Corgis Mixed With Other Breeds, And The Result Was Absolutely Pawsome".

"Columbus Zoo And Aquarium Welcome A Squeaky Little Small-Clawed Otter Pup".

"22 Dogs That Prove We Don’t Deserve Dogs". [Buzzfeed]

[dreamwidth.org profile] naye posted June pics of her LaPerm kitties!

"I’ve Spent Years Photographing Rats To Break The Negative Image Of Rats By Taking Cute Pics Of Them".

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] erinptah, "Senior Cat Was So Grumpy — Until He Became ‘Grandpa’ To Kittens: “I was expecting him to hiss or growl or slink away. But then one of the ginger kittens started licking Mason’s ear, and Mason sort of leaned into it and closed his eyes like it was the most amazing thing ever.”".


Miscellaneous

"Sleeps With Monsters: Stop Erasing Women’s Presence in SFF". [Tor.com]

Aww, yay! Sarah Kurchak is Writer of the Week at The Establishment.

"The Myth of Drug Expiration Dates".

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] alexseanchai, a fascinating piece of poetry/meta and commentary about translation between languages where the speakers of one have oppressed the speakers of the other. It's remarkable.

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] tielan, "5 Easy To Make Homemade Air Conditioners".

"How Clergy Set the Standard for Abortion Care: Fifty years ago, a network of religious leaders helped thousands of women find safe, comfortable ways of having the procedure". [2016]

"'Glow' Star Betty Gilpin: What It's Like to Have Pea-Sized Confidence With Watermelon-Sized Boobs", a piece about becoming comfortable in her body for the first time. (I'm not sure exactly what content notes to put on this; proceed carefully if you have issues tangled up with body image.)[Note: I have not seen Glow, although it's on the LIST OF DOOM.]

Märchenmond

Jul. 19th, 2017 11:35 pm
schneefink: (FF Kaylee in hammock)
[personal profile] schneefink
I recently reread one of my favorite fantasy series as a kid, the Märchenmond books by Wolfgang and Heike Hohlbein. (I only ever knew of three books, I recently found out that there is a fourth one but with a different main character. I haven't read it yet and I don't think I want to.) The title means "fairy tale moon", though the English translation is "Magic Moon," which for some reason sounds hilarious to me.

I was worried I wouldn't like the books anymore, but I reread them anyway because I had ideas for these characters for h/c bingo. (No idea why they came to mind after so long. Now after rereading I've discarded the original idea but I have another one, let's see if anything comes of it.) Unsurprisingly I don't like them as much as I did, but I can still see why I loved them and enjoy some elements, good enough for me.

As I half expected, I didn't much like the main character, who always becomes unexpectedly extremely wise in the last fifteen pages and makes a great speech; the special fighting skills were pretty much a given. Especially books 2 and 3 required a lot of work to ignore how silly the central conflict premise was so one could enjoy the rest of the plot. In all three books I really liked the secondary characters, they were a lot of fun. There were continuity problems from each book to the next, I did not expect that to annoy me as much as it did.
All in all I don't regret rereading the books, but probably won't do it again, at least not anytime soon.

Märchenmond )

Märchenmonds Kinder )

Märchenmonds Erben )


In apartment news, most of the construction site is gone! Originally it said end of July, so logically I expected it to last until the middle of August, and it finishing earlier than announced was a happy surprise.
Eva moved out today :( She'd only been here for three and a half months, but apart from DD she was my favorite flatmate so far and I'll miss her. We already found the next person, she'll move in in August. She seems nice too, but at least at her initial visit I found it not that easy to get into a conversation flow with her, I hope that'll get better and we'll get along well. We already know that she doesn't bake, that's a downgrade right from the start ;) DD and I decided to bake more often (and also make more lemonade), I hope we'll actually manage to keep to that.
umadoshi: (Feed logo (from Mira Grant's site))
[personal profile] umadoshi
In a shocking development, I'm going to try going to bed now (before midnight) rather than my more usual 2-3 AM. I can't even pretend to myself that there's any chance I'll produce any wordcount tonight, so trying to sleep seems like the right call even if it's wildly out of character.

PSA: the ebook of Feed (Newsflesh book 1) is currently on sale at all kinds of retailers, including the Canadian Kobo site, if you haven't tried it yet and feel at all inclined to fill my heart with joy by reading it and meeting Georgia Mason. (Here's my rec post for the series.)

As it happens, now is an extra-good time to pick up any of [dreamwidth.org profile] seanan_mcguire(/Mira Grant)'s books or support her Patreon: her beloved female Maine Coon, Alice, is extremely ill. ;_;
umadoshi: (facepalm - cat)
[personal profile] umadoshi
--My brain is refusing to settle on much of anything. It feels like a mix of my usual lack of focus with a few scattered side notes of...not impending anxiety, but flickers of it trying to settle in. (In a couple of cases I know that the anxiety is about, but can't shake the sense that it may be justified, which makes it harder to deal with. I may wind up having to send an email or two of the "I honestly don't know if you're mad at me and I'm picking up on it or if my brain is making it up wholesale or if I'm picking up on other stresses from you and my brain's misattributing them" [and the later makes inquiring much worse, because if someone is worn down or stressed because of unrelated things, I don't want to add "oh, and please help me regulate my possibly-irrational emotions" to their plate].)


--For the past several nights my sleep cycle was even worse than usual, resulting in far too little sleep, and last night/this morning some part of my subconscious took charge and I didn't really wake up until almost 2 PM today. o_o Fortunately I had the rewrite that was due today basically finished, so I just had to give it a final polish and read-through. And this afternoon Jinksy was randomly extra cuddly and came to snuggle on my lap at my desk twice while I was reading the paper and working.


--This evening [dreamwidth.org profile] scruloose and I got some gardening done. I deadheaded some annuals; he took down the "prey TV" birdfeeder (because of this); we moved the tomato plants around a bit so the smaller ones will get more light; we added some height to a couple of stackable tomato cages; and we put down mulch in the perennial bed and around the two lilacs (in the latter case, in order to clear the encroaching grasses as much as anything else). The Sensation lilac is thriving in the face of getting actual care from us! It's significantly larger than it was at the beginning of spring. (Why, it's as if pruning, fertilizing, consistent watering, and putting lime down makes a difference!) And the lone Sungold tomato plant is growing rapidly, and still far bigger than any of the others. (Even after it lost a stalk [?] today. We moved it, and once it was away from the others two stalks weren't nearly supported enough, but weren't outright falling over...and yet in the time it took [dreamwidth.org profile] scruloose to get some ties ready, one of them said "fuck it" and snapped. *sighs* At least it didn't have wee tomatoes on it.)


--Hey, remember how, in Toronto, I bought orange Enthusiast Fluevogs in orange because the purple had been discontinued? Guess what just came out in a new purple colorway for the new season? *facepalm* Fortunately, I don't like this purple version nearly as well as the discontinued one. (And also, the orange--which I really do like!--were noticeably on sale, so even if the new purple had been out, it would've meant not getting either pair this trip, not getting the purple instead.) But part of me is still just like "...really? Really?"

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