Driveby link: "tell them about something they've done or made that you liked". For some reason this makes me less uncomfortable than the usual type of love meme, and I don't have time to analyze why this morning (or to leave comments on it, alas), but in case you are like me, here it is.
Because I miss you all but this has to do until I knock off some more work and can talk about Arisia and various other things. (Some of these were previously posted to G+.)
The NFL's Response to Brain Trauma: A Brief History—for the person I met at Arisia who said that they felt like football was the most problematic thing they were a fan of at the moment. Which I may well agree with, even if they were a Ravens fan.
The Many Lives of Donald Westlake—an appreciation of one of my favorite writers. Go read the Dortmunder books!
Music to influence kids’ tastes—because this is the kind of thing we think about at Chateau Steelypips.
The Great Canadian Maple Syrup Heist—"It wasn’t just about syrup, or money. It was a miniature Canadian Cold War."
In other news, SteelyKid lost her first tooth yesterday (!), the Pip has us reading Hippos Go Beserk a minimum of four times a day, and Chad and I are snowed under with work. Back to it.
Jezebel (which I do not usually read, but saw a link to) is running Fuck You Week, its "first annual week of desperate emotional cleansing and unhinged psychic purging."
There are several right now, but I've nothing left to say after this one: Fuck You, Cancer.
Have some Internet things:
One: The guys on an ESPN football show apparently decided to work in as many Princess Bride quotes as they could into a half-hour. Hilarity ensues, by which I mean, I hurt myself laughing at this 1:38 clip video pulling out all the references.
( embedded video )
Two: I've started re-reading The Hobbit chapter-by-chapter over on Tor.com; here's the Chapter 1 post. Do stop by, it should be fun.
Three: SteelyKid has started sending email. No, I'm serious, she hunt-and-pecks the letters, sometimes asking us for spelling but not always, and then we click "send" together. She's visiting Chad's parents right now and behind the cut I have the very best email chain ever.
I'd send her back a smiley-face but I'm not sure she's understand. Gosh I love that kid.
Four: con_or_bust is now taking requests for assistance from non-white fans/fans of color to attend SFF cons in January, February, and March 2012—including Arisia, FOGCon, and EightSquaredCon (the 2013 Eastercon), which have all donated to support Con or Bust. See this post for information on how to request assistance.
Things I am grateful for (or that, depending on the phrasing), daily during November.
- Gotta go with the Internet today, for all kinds of things, not just the above.
Here are something things to read that I have enjoyed over the last couple of days:
Why Great Sign Language Interpreters Are So Animated. Terrific detailed article about ASL as a visual language. The things languages do to convey meaning are so cool.
Here are two things I did not know until recently:
- Susan B. Anthony was actually arrested, tried, and convicted of the crime of voting while female.
- The "B" stood for "badass."
Buddy Comedies, Bad Novellas, and Battling Graduate Degrees. Grantland's monthly breakdown of the New York Times weddings section is particularly good this month:
I thought of #NaNoWriMoOpeners while reading through all of October's featured "Vows" columns, all of which had opening lines worthy of landmark literature. And so here they are, in no particular order, with some suggestions for novice (or experienced!) novelists as to where the story could take off from there.
The AV Club is re-reading The Sandman; here's their discussion of Season of Mists, with links to prior installments on the right.
Me, I have a brief to write hunt-and-peck style while the Pip sleeps poorly on my lap and left arm, which is a reasonable enough distraction.
I am sadly late on this one, but help_for_ephemere is a a fundraiser to benefit ephemere, with the aim of supporting her in the wake of her losing her job, home, and good relations with her family due to homophobia; it's being run by her friends and with her permission. Bidding on auction items ends Saturday; here are some auctions with no bids or one bid, and the FAQ. *peruses*
Also, Con or Bust will be taking requests for assistance to attend SFF cons in October, November, or December from non-white fans/fans of color during August 15-25; please plan accordingly! More information.
First, there's a new Where the Hell is Matt? video:
Second, I was admiring someone else's tattoo the other day and felt vaguely like it would be nice to have some excellent body art. But I can never think of anything that I would actually want permanently on me. So I will ask you all: is there anything that jumps to mind as "oh, this is absolutely what Kate should have as a tattoo"?
From Ex Urbe, which also includes treasures like the Spot the Saint series, discussions of mask culture in Venice and porphyry, and a visit to Roman Legionary reenactors, plus lots and lots of stuff about Florence.
One: our dystopic present: Slate on the business of international surrogacy.
Two: my sleep schedule is so variable that I can't say whether f.lux is helping me sleep better, but it is a lot more pleasant to look at my computer in a dimly-lit room at night with f.lux's adjustments to the screen color.
Three: I'll be at Boskone with Chad and the Pip, mostly doing the lobbycon thing since, well, the Pip. This will also preclude me from running a bake sale this year; if anyone wants to take that on, I'd be glad to advise and help. And I hope to see some of you there.
First: I have finally updated the bios on my LJ & DW profile pages for clarity and to provide additional information. (Did you know that SteelyKid's nickname does not derive from the alloy? Or how to pronounce my last name?)
The best way to describe the reading experience I had with this book [The Singing Creek Where The Willows Grow, by Opal Whiteley, ed. Benjamin Hoff] is to say that it resembled what might happen to a perfectly innocent person who does not know much about history while looking up newspaper headlines from 1880s London. Which is to say, there you are researching away, doing nothing particularly ominous, and suddenly all of the scholarship on Jack the Ripper lurches out of its cabinet and starts gnawing on your leg. Up becomes down, dogs and cats start living together, the definitive works on the subject are written by people who do not have a personal interest so much as a personal ideological obsession, and otherwise perfectly rational researchers start yelling at one another "WHAT PART OF PH'NGLUI MGLW'NAFH WGAH'NAGHL CTHULHU FHTAGN DO YOU NOT UNDERSTAND?"
The gravitational pull of the thing is clear just from the review. So read, but cautiously.
Fourth: Via my reading list, I found what purports to be a list of 111 Male Characters Of British Literature, In Order Of Bangability. Actually first I found discussion of the list, in which people boggled, in this chronological order, at the inclusion of Kubla Khan, St. John Rivers from Jane Eyre, Othello, and Aslan. (Because if someone who loves God more than women and someone who murdered his wife weren't bangable enough, then a Jesus-lion should really do it!)
At which point I looked at the list for myself and rapidly decided that it could not have been conceived in any seriousness. It's in descending order, so I skipped to the bottom and worked up. As I said there, while I approve of Michael Cantrip in the top twenty, no-one has ever in the entire history of the world previously called Tom Bombadil (#21) "bangable" and meant it sexually. Ever. It's just not possible. Aslan at #32 is simply to see how far down people would actually read.
I suspect a random-number algorithm, myself.
Fifth: Tonight on our walk, Chad found SteelyKid two-thirds of a robin's eggshell, which she very carefully held for several blocks while explaining that the bird was going to fly back into the shell, so she had to find a place to put it. Which she did on the second try, and then bid the shell goodbye, told it to be good, and said that it should go to the Egg House. As we walked away, I tried to prepare her for the idea that it might not be there tomorrow by saying that now a bird or a person could come take it. She agreed and added that it also might be taken by a tree or the grass or some dirt or a fire drill (not truck, drill; I think they had one today at daycare).
I have carefully remembered where we put it, and think I may just as carefully misremember tomorrow so I can tell her that someone/thing did take it and head off the possible trauma of seeing it smashed.
- Getting Some Nuance Up In Your Reproductive Rights: Intersectionality, reproductive justice, and why it matters.
- Good fic I've read recently:
- Homework by busaikko and its remix Fieldwork by Rheanna: SGA, gen; respective ratings and length: teen and up (which I think is overly cautious) and general audiences; 963 and 3173 words. "For some reason, after his father's funeral Dave Sheppard keeps getting e-mail from Ronon Dex." // "Ronon starts his e-mail correspondence with Sheppard's brother more or less by mistake." Really nice characterizations, humor and a little low-key angst.
- Vorkosigan's Day by Philomytha: Vorkosigan series, gen, rated teen and up, warning for graphic depictions of violence, 4580 words. Duv Galeni attends an Academy seminar on illegal orders given by Admiral Lord Aral Vorkosigan, Regent of Barrayar. Should be canon.
- And because SteelyKid asked for it this morning: Baby foxes playing.
And I'm not going to read Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother, but rushthatspeaks's review of Jasmine and Stars: Reading More Than Lolita In Tehran, by Fatemeh Keshavarz, was nevertheless very valuable for giving me a term I needed in my life:
This short but incisive book is a critique of what Keshavarz calls the New Orientalism, as exemplified by Reading Lolita in Tehran: a set of narratives, purporting to be factual, by people who at least theoretically have inside knowledge of a culture due to upbringing or heredity, which use this insider status to reinscribe a stereotypical and two-dimensional view of the culture in question.
Yes, that. Go read it.
rydra_wong has a really great recommendation for John M. Ford's novel The Dragon Waiting, which makes me desperately long to re-read it in my copious spare time so I can play in the spoiler post (linked in the non-spoiler rec).
Kyle Whelliston: "I try to be the last man (sic?) in America to know who won the Super Bowl, and the last man in America to know the score of the game." As of half an hour ago, he was still successfully ignorant of both, which I find hilarious.
SteelyKid has been watching Where the Hell Is Matt (2008) on repeat the last couple of days (because she misinterpreted Al Jazeera's live stream as "people dancing," and when she asked for that Chad wisely decided to take the request literally), so in case anyone was offline when it last went around, there's the link. I've seen it dozens of times and it still makes me completely happy.
P.S.: Easy YouTube Video Downloader, a FireFox addon.