Seen at yhlee's, though I was A Rebel! and ignored most of the questions in favor of reading from the opening of The Fortunate Fall.
Something I forgot to say is that I recently listened to a recording of an oral argument I did, and I was disappointed that my voice was kind of . . . ordinary.
Wiped out for no obvious reason today, so no new panel reports. Here's a poll to help me decide which to do next:[Poll #1084855]
Also, the "tell me which fictional character I am" meme is very much fun, even if I absolutely suck at coming up with answers. (I've been thinking about it on and off most of today, and the only person I've decided on is veejane, who hasn't even asked and might not appreciate my answer anyway.) But the accumulated results are like the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen game that went around a few years ago: yhlee is Iskierka from the Temeraire books, and oyceter is Fuu from Samurai Champloo, and I am Kate Somerville from the Lymond Chronicles [*], and together we fight crime! In the person of . . . someone who has unleashed a plague of locusts, because they would all be very upset at the wrecking of the food supply.
Okay, I said I wasn't very good at this.
[*] According to rachelmanija, but if you have another idea, go ahead.
And now I go off to gather strength for the morrow by reading Qwan.
Ask me a question. Tell me my daemon. Ask me to ask you a question. Make up a memory of us. Ask me about my icons. Tell me something you think I should know. Start a conversation in icons or lyrics. Ask me to do some other meme.
I don't promise to do the same thing in response—I suck at people's daemons, for instance—but I'll do something.
- Abruptly it was spring this afternoon, as in bright bright sun and 65 degrees Farenheit. I have no idea, but I'm not complaining.
- Via tnh's Particles, troll bingo cards.
- There's only one movie left from the silly guessing post, so have some more IMDB plot keywords:
Pudding, Brain Surgery, Tortoise, Weevil, Pursuit
- GIP (because the booklog doesn't have a place for usericons, even appropriate ones).
From various people: guess the movie or TV series from three of the IMDB's plot keywords:
- Stabbed In The Shoulder, Birthday Party, End Of Mankind
- Geese, Black Box, Temperature (ETA: IMDB has this as "black box recorder," which isn't quite right; sorry)
- Old War Buddies, Gun Nut, Mysterious Past
- Hollowed Out Book, Library, Hope
- Giant Spider, Battering Ram, Pyre
- Genocide, Suit Of Armor, Military
- Acrobat, EMP, Mormon
- Pudding, Brain Surgery, Tortoise
- Torture, Cliff, True Love
- Animate Tree, Scaling Ladder, Rabbit
- Black Suit Clad Killer, Union, Convenience Store
- Ice Skating, Briefcase, Reckless Driving
- US Embassy, Amnesia, Fishing Boat
- Vincent Van Gogh, Baseball, Mushroom Cloud
- Good Cop Bad Cop, Plastic Surgery, Shootout
(I'm bolding the ones that are still left to be guessed.)
Earlier in March, we went to New York City on the occasion of relatives' birthdays and saw a musical called The Drowsy Chaperone about which I intend to write more, really, I promise. Getting half-price same day tickets makes for a really long day, but if we got tickets ahead of time, going down for a matinee would be quite workable, so we'll have to keep that in mind. Any particular recommendations? I should note that Chad's not much on musicals unless they're metafictional or have some other reason for people bursting into song.
We've also booked our Japan flights and hotels. All we need is the rail pass (90 days ahead) and our flight seat assignments (ditto; not that I have any great hopes of getting an exit row, but we'll try). Now I need to start thinking about learning the language . . .
And as discussed previously here, I started taking a yoga class. It's certainly exercise, but I haven't decided if I'll take another one; the instructor hasn't been very useful in telling me which exercises I should avoid or modify because of the bursitis in my hips, and I'm not suited to the less-concrete parts of the class. On the other hand, having a scheduled class is a good thing for a procrastinatory Kate. We'll see when it's over.
Last weekend we went to Boston. We spend all day Saturday at the Museum of Science, as it was hosting the Darwin exhibit that originated at the American Museum of Natural History. It had all the stuff you would expect, documents of Darwin's and fossils and specimens, all of which were informative and interesting—plus two Galapagos tortoises that I found terribly comic in how very slow and deliberate they were. As a complement, we went to the IMAX movie on the Galapagos, which includes some great underwater footage. After a break at Papa Razzi, a local chain Italian place, we just wandered around the Museum. Lots of the hands-on stuff still needs fixing, alas, but we still found plenty to entertain ourselves before having dinner with prince_eric and spouse. Sunday morning we put in an intense two hours at the Museum of Fine Arts: Japanese Bamboo Art, Tsutsugaki Textiles, really cool marbled paper made by Sufis, and a fascinating exhibition called "Women of Renown: Female Heroes and Villains in the Prints of Utagawa Kuniyoshi." According to information in the exhibit, the MFA has thousands of Japanese prints and is starting to digitize them; you can see some online.
Finally and very belatedly, papersky tells me that I am Bapchild. I have what is "thought by many to be one of the finest Village Halls in Kent"; a cricket club (with fantasy cricket!); and a spring named after St. Thomas a Becket. I was the site of the Synod of Baccanceld in 694, and am currently involved in a controversy over the construction of a Kent Science Park.
(And now to post this while the borrowed wireless connection has faded in rather than out, since our DSL went out last night and Verizon doesn't know why . . . )
More interestingly: look into your crystal balls, dear readers, and predict the most significant books since 2002. I'll start: Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke.
1. Total number of books I've owned:
Back-of-the-envelope suggests in the neighborhood of three thousand.
2. Last book I bought:
It was the school budget vote today, and they always have 50 cent paperbacks as a fundraiser. So I bought Suzanne Brockmann's The Defiant Hero, which is part of a contemporary romance series that I've been getting out of the library, and Tom Clancy's Red Storm Rising, because I used to like it back when I read Dad's copy.
I think Red Storm Rising will make great bedtime reading this week, actually.
3. Last book I read:
Volume two of Lucifer, Children and Monsters. I was dealing with tech support so I wasn't in the best mood for it; when I realized I didn't actually understand immediately what was going on, I just skimmed very fast to the end, got explanations, and then went back and read normally. Despite the inauspicious circumstances, I liked it very much.
Last text-only would be Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH.
4. 5 books that mean a lot to me:
Hey, I did most important books and favorite books already! Oh, all right: Freedom and Necessity, The Lord of the Rings, Possession, for the reasons stated previously. Here I find that "mean a lot" isn't congruent with "most important" or "favorite," flail, come up with Small Gods for philosophical reasons, and retire from the field in confusion.
5. Five people to take up the meme and answer in their own lj.
I can't keep track of who's already done this, and so invite anyone reading who would like to answer. (Leave a link in comments, please.)
My paternal grandmother died Thursday before last; she was unresponsive when my grandfather went to wake her late morning and then slipped away before she got to the hospital. She'd suffered (I use the term advisedly) from chronic illness for years, but I was still surprised at the news—beyond the usual shock that it was this day, I had rather expected an acute crisis rather than a quiet passing. She had always been very good to me, but she was neither healthy nor happy, and hadn't been for some time. So while I am sad (and guilty about not seeing her more often), it is not a fierce grief. The funeral was a week ago today, and was uneventful, which is a good thing when it comes to funerals as far as I am concerned.
I didn't post about it at the time because the mis-mash of reaction made me feel unequal to dealing with reader reaction, if that makes sense. (Also because I was trying to push work aside for the funeral trip.)
Everything else was work or Boskone. A report on the latter will be done today, because I won't have time the rest of the week. But the snow seems to have stopped for the moment, and I really need to get out of the house before I fall asleep—I've already wasted the morning dozing or catching up on Internety things. So before I head out for a few errands, I will leave you all with six things I've done that you probably haven't.
It was the kind of week where I kept saying, "Isn't it the weekend yet?" And then it was the weekend, and Chad went away to hang out with his guys from college (coming back with a new-to-me description of "beginning to try to get pregnant": "pulling the goalie"), and I ran some errands and had a nice lunch and went to see The Bourne Supremacy, which I had been greatly looking forward to.( Non-spoilery rambling )
I also cooked food Chad doesn't like this weekend, scallops; there are a few things I'd do differently if I did it again, but the main thing is not to put them in risotto, because the textures don't really work together. And I booklogged up a storm, starting with a rave for 1crowdedhour's A Scholar of Magics, and am going to finish a post on the 2004 Hugo nominees for novel, after I do a silly meme about ( what's in my purse. )
Out to Massachusetts this weekend for a family holiday barbeque. We had to take the dog, because all the local boarders were full, but it went better than we feared—she does not like other dogs, but when outdoors and a reasonable distance away from the other two dogs (my parents' and my cousins') and kept company by at least one person, she was pretty calm. She didn't sleep in our room this time, and yelped for about ten minutes intermittently when she was put to bed, but after that she was okay. The barbeque itself was very nice. We met my new first cousin once removed, who is four months old and looks extremely concerned all the time; apparently he's the spitting image of his dad at that age, so he won't necessarily grow up to be a horrible pessimist just because he looks that way now.
We saw Spiderman 2 yesterday. ( 'I want arms like that, only not evil.' Indiscriminate spoilers. )
I suppose, while we're talking about superhero movies, I should drop in this ( personality quiz result )
Today we went furniture shopping, and found a TV stand that should let us save some space and remove the stereo equipment from its current rickety shelving. Finding the right piece was surprisingly easy; figuring out the best place to put it is surprisingly hard, but will probably be apparent once we get the thing and try out the various options. Oh, and we bought books, of course. And early this week Chad's new computer will be delivered, and I'll attempt to connect it to his old one and transfer his files over. Wish me luck . . .
(I have already had more computer luck than I expected this week. I had to upgrade Eudora because 3.0.6 doesn't support SMTP authentication—go figure—which I hadn't wanted to do because a 4.x or 5.x that I'd tried had saved my mailboxes in HTML ( all over the place, like that) for no apparent reason. Eudora 6.1, I am pleased to say, does no such thing. I don't known whether this means I'm on a roll with computers or I'm out of luck.)
Meme time, from pnh. Suggest to me:
- A movie.
- A book.
- A musical artist, song, or album.
- An LJ user not on my friends list.
- Something to do in the next two months.
(It would be helpful if you said why, too, at least for 1-3 and 5. (I can look at a user's journal on my own easily enough.))
Set the first:
- I sat on the Lord Chancellor's woolsack.
Almost everyone spotted this as the lie; I was hoping that my
semester working in Parliament (admittedly for an MP) would give it
an aura of plausibility, but alas, no.
- I spoke (more than once) from the floor of the U.S. House of
I worked for a Congressman for a year and gave tours to
constituents; when the House wasn't in session, I would bring
people down onto the floor.
- A former Presidential candidate wrote me a recommendation
letter for law school.
Michael Dukakis teaches at Northeastern University; I took a
class from him.
Really nice, smart person, and very dedicated to teaching.
Set the second:
- I ate lunch with Alec Baldwin.
About a quarter thought this was the lie. For my class with
Dukakis, I wrote a paper on campaign finance reform, so he brought
me to a luncheon that an advocacy group gave, featuring
He looks very like he does on screen, and seemed knowledgable
- I was an extra on the set of Good Will Hunting.
About half correctly spotted this as the lie. I was in college
in Boston at the right time, so it had a much better aura of
plausibility than the first one, anyway.
- I inspired a novel.
I asked papersky a question which eventually led to
The Prize in the Game. It was probably not a good one
to use as a lot of people here know that. =>