goodbye homeland; hello homeland

  • Sep. 22nd, 2017 at 10:32 AM
So, in about 20 minutes I'm going to be leaving my parents' place, so that we can all go to the airport and travel to the country where my family has lived for as many generations as we know about (at least 4) and left when I was 7.

I've never been to the capital. I don't speak the language that people mostly speak there. (Everyone else in my family does speak it, but at home we always spoke Russian, the de facto lingua franca of the USSR, and that's all I managed to pick up by 7.) Kiev is new to me, and not new because I grew up on stories about it. (My aunt grew up there.) Odessa is familiar, full of people who will be happy to see me, but foreign too, like just another random European city, with buildings and customs that don't conform to the West Asian norms I find familiar and standard.

Anyway, if I started describing my feelings in earnest we'd never be done with parentheses.

I expect this trip will be a mindfuck. I expect being stuck with my parents for two weeks straight will be... a challenge. I hope, intensely, that the next two weeks will be wonderful and healing as well, as going home usually is.

Take care, friends.

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OTW Guest Post: Henry Jenkins

  • Sep. 21st, 2017 at 11:06 AM
Banner by caitie of an OTW-themed guest access lanyard



“News of the OTW bubbled up from many directions at once, most likely through my associations with Escapade, but also through an academic colleague whose partner at the time was involved. I was so excited to hear about the emergence of this fan advocacy network which brought together fannish lawyers willing to help protect our fair use rights as fans; fan scholars publishing their work through a peer-reviewed journal; fan programmers using their skills in support of the community; and of course, an archive where fans controlled what happened to their own works without the interference of web 2.0 interests.

Each of these things is important on its own terms, but taken together, this organization has been a transformative force, in all senses of the words, for fans and their rights to participate.”

For our anniversary Henry Jenkins talks fan studies, students, fandom changes over the years & why it's worth fighting for: http://goo.gl/fm19m5

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Also off my trusty friendslist, here is a dossier on white supremacy in the US -- from a source on the inside who infiltrated key organizations for years.

White Supremacy background and history, plus of course present danger: The International Alternative Right


C/p'd from [personal profile] giandujakiss:

The GOP broke off bipartisan talks with Dems to shore up ACA's insurance markets, and now they're trying - again - to unilaterally repeal ACA and take with it a huge chunk of Medicaid (which will, of course, completely destabilize our entire healthcare system, but that's where we are).

You can find more information by googling Graham-Cassidy, but here's one link [on this new attempt to dismantle the ACA].

Apparently, Lindsey Graham - one of the bill's sponsors - got on Breitbart radio (yes, now we're integrating Breitbart into GOP mainstream, fun times ahead) to urge listeners to call in support of the new bill, so it's VERY IMPORTANT that the Senate be flooded with opposition calls.

Here is one script and information resource.

L'shanah tovah!

  • Sep. 20th, 2017 at 8:01 AM
A little early, but I won't be around later, so: a happy start of the High Holy Days to you, if you celebrate!

My secular Jewish household will mostly eat apples and sweet honey when it comes to action. But both my wife and I will think of the Jewish community, in our different ways as an American Jew and a German Gentile.

offline

  • Sep. 20th, 2017 at 7:07 AM
 injured myself last night. walking, standing, sitting etc is very painful. may be offline for a while.

Tags:

Unfortunately we have to do this again

  • Sep. 20th, 2017 at 4:00 AM
The GOP broke off bipartisan talks with Dems to shore up ACA's insurance markets, and now they're trying - again - to unilaterally repeal ACA and take with it a huge chunk of Medicaid (which will, of course, completely destabilize our entire healthcare system, but that's where we are).

You can find more information by googling Graham-Cassidy, but here's one link.

Apparently, Lindsey Graham - one of the bill's sponsors - got on Breitbart radio (yes, now we're integrating Breitbart into GOP mainstream, fun times ahead) to urge listeners to call in support of the new bill, so it's VERY IMPORTANT that the Senate be flooded with opposition calls.

Here is one script and information resource.

Calls To Kill TrumpCare

  • Sep. 20th, 2017 at 6:12 AM
Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/2ycGRAA on September 19, 2017 at 10:40PM

If you live in a Democratic state you can help.

.....if you live in a state with two Democratic Senators who support the ACA, you may be asking yourself: what more can I do? How can I influence persuadable Republicans in red states who may be on the fence?

Well, we have an answer! We’re bringing back the blue state/red state calling tool from the last healthcare fight.

https://www.trumpcareten.org/calls-to-kill-trumpcare

Here’s how it works:

  1. Sign up below to make phone calls from our peer-to-peer dialing tool. You’ll get an email confirmation with a login, password, and URL to sign into our system. Once signed in, you can start making calls immediately—and we’ll give you a script to make it as easy as possible!

  2. Next, you’ll call a voter in a key state with a swing Republican Senator. These folks are your friends—they attended the Women’s March, they’re standing up to #DefendDACA, and/or fight for progressive causes.

  3. You explain how they have power now. You’ll remind them why the continued fight against TrumpCare is so important—and why they have particular power in this moment.

  4. You ask them to use their power. You’ll ask them to call their senator in opposition to the bill, and to share their own reasons for opposing it.

  5. The tool connects them to their Senator’s office. The call tool will allow you to automatically patch them through to the Senators’ district offices.

It’s super easy: more than 1,000 Indivisibles in blue states made 100,000 phone calls to constituents in our target states in the final two days before the healthcare vote in July. And we won. We can win this time, too.


Tags:not a reblog, activism, PDWCrosspost2, save us

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Call Your Senator: Weds Sept 20, 2017

  • Sep. 20th, 2017 at 6:12 AM
Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/2xg1UTw on September 19, 2017 at 10:30PM

“Friend posted this one. I haven’t heard anything more recent or accurate. So, default mode: CALL! 

They are just one vote shy of repealing the ACA. If any of these Senators represent you, call them NOW. This is an all-hands-on-deck moment. 

if you have family or friends in these states, ask them to call. Or use Resist Bot to fax their Senators.  Text RESIST to 50409 

McCain 202-224-2235 (AZ)

Murkowski 202-224-6665 (AK)

Collins 202-224-2523 (Maine)

Portman 202-224-3353 (Ohio)

Capito 202-224-6472 (West Virginia)

Alexander 202-224-4944 (TN


Tags:not a reblog, activism, PDWCrosspost2

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But Wait There's More

  • Sep. 19th, 2017 at 9:56 PM
What if you could get color like this.....






but at the cost of having wavy lines like these.....






Every day is exactly the same

  • Sep. 18th, 2017 at 10:40 PM
Oh, I totally forgot to mention in my last post--you remember a while ago when someone had asked me about translating my Groundhog Day/time loop fic I can't remember how this started (but I can tell you exactly how it ends) into Russian, only they had to remove the comment in order to get help translating it through some kind of fest? And I thought it was so strange but it turned out to be some kind of fandom battle where teams compete against each other, so everything had to be anonymous? Well, the translation was posted the other day (or at least, I think it's still the same person involved, though the poster had a different user name, but I can't imagine who else would have been interested in translating it), so if you were ever inclined to read that fic in Russian, you can now! Не могу вспомнить, как это началось (но расскажу, как закончится) is here on AO3.

I also forgot to mention some of the TV I've been watching during recovery. There were some shows everyone told me required absolute attention, which is not often how I watch TV these days, so I kept saving them for when I'd have time to really watch.

The Expanse was the first one, and I can see why people like it (I've only seen the first season since it's free streaming on Amazon; I'm not gonna pay 20 bucks for the second season, though), but it suffered from the same thing that pretty much all SF and fantasy suffers from that I really, really hate: it's still largely a show about men, with one or two roles for "strong" women, who are stuck representing all of our gender. One woman on a spaceship with all guys, one woman in politics surrounded by all guys…I'm just so fucking weary. And the small supporting female roles are all defined by their relationships to men--the police captain or whatever she was, the other woman, both defined by their relationships to creepy skeevy Thomas Jane, Juliette Mao by defying her father, by the men she's dealt with in the past. Maybe the second season is better, I have to hope so. I like the worldbuilding, but this hundreds of years in the future and women are still barely in the story; I have no more patience for stories where we're writing alternate worlds that suffer from the exact same myopic shit we have now.

[personal profile] belmanoir watched GLOW with me, I think we saw the first three, maybe four, episodes? I liked it, but I have to agree with a lot of what I saw in complaints about the show--Ruth is a terribly unlikeable person to hang your show on from the beginning. Not being likeable isn't inherently bad, there are great shows with horrible characters at the center, but she doesn't have a strong enough character to make you want to follow her on the path to redemption the way a lot of those stories do--when you have an unlikeable protagonist, you really have to beef up a lot of the other things to make them compelling. The other problem we both had was that they're spending way, way too much time on the men and not enough on the secondary female characters. Especially the wrestling dynasty girl, I want to see way, way more of her, and I don't give a fuck about the men. It's a huge mistake to spend so much time on the skeevy director guy or Piz the producer, especially in a story about these women. The '80s stuff is hilarious, though, and I love the soundtrack and I'm interested to watch more, I just hate knowing that they're going to keep spending so much time on the guys.

I've seen the first few episodes of Sens8, and I'm baffled by why people love this so passionately. But I'm hoping it gets better as it goes along; as it is right now, the only character I care about is the Mexican actor and his boyfriend, but that's not a lot of screen time. I mean I get that people like it because it's one of the few shows with main storylines of gay and lesbian and trans people, and I can definitely understand that, plus there's the international stories instead of it being yet another subset of white America, but…nothing's sparking with me so far and some of the stories are so over the top ridiculously unbelievable and stupid that I'm gnashing my teeth--but I'll stick it out at least through the first season to see if it gets better.

I watched all of the first season of Bojack Horseman and…wow, was that fucking depressing. It's billed as a comedy, of course, but I never laughed once, not even at all the fun it pokes at Hollywoodd or the guest voices or anything. It's just so goddamn bleak. It took me a while to get past the bizarro concept (the style of the world, with animals being partly humanistic and partly animalistic, and vice versa, is something that creeps me out beyond words), but I really wanted to embrace the show because I know a lot of people who love it so much, but I didn't expect it to make me wish I'd never woken up after surgery. I sometimes feel like that's all that's left of the future, this sort of miserable existence where you're just wasting time till you die, and the show made me feel that x1,000. So thanks, show, for making my already suicidal tendencies even more pronounced.

I'm self soothing by watching the first three series of The Great British Bake Off, which they won't show here for inexplicable reasons (on PBS and Netflix, season 1 is actually season 5, and season 2 is season 4, which just…why). It was interesting to see how the show evolved. I was kind of disturbed by one contestant because she was so clearly an abused woman, she showed every behavior I ever saw working at the shelter years ago--either abused by a husband or possibly a parent farther back, but since there was no husband in any of the home segments or the finale and her children said some really telling things, I'm betting it was an ex-husband. Good on her for participating, though, but it made me really uncomfortable many times because I kept wondering if the producers realized how it was coming across on screen. Still, it's fun to go back and see some of the things I've heard about in the show but never saw, and the show honestly, even when you're tense for the people you want to win, is so pleasant.

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Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/2xu7Ev7 on September 18, 2017 at 07:06PM

Please call your reps

Tags:not a reblog, activism, PDWCrosspost2

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 I am working with a third party to convert VHS tapes onto DVD. At home, I only use the copyguard removal tool when the video won't  transfer  (note: most of the tapes are not protected, just really crappy quality). The reason is that when the tool is turned on, it caused horizontal "tearing" or wavy lines (think really bad Twilight Zone effect) on all clips.  So I use it only sparingly when I have no other choice

The third party is using a Time Based Corrector which also serves as  copyguard remover (if needed). We're getting the same problem - even if a tape has no copyguard on it, if the tool is turned on, it causes wavy lines. There is no way for him to capture without it (his setup is fixed).  

I'd love another set of eyes on the results to decide whether to proceed. And of course any suggestions.


  

edited: based on feedback, I tried adding a different TBC/clarifier (Panasonic DMR-ES10), inserting it before the Canopus capture card. This stabilized the image but introduced  a red/purple color shift across the clips. Again, this is not copy-protected tape - just really bad source.

What this tells me is this

1.An automated approach may not be feasible - we either live with jagged lines through all the vids or red/purple color shift through all the vids. Or we stick with the labor intensive method - run the video until it stops, mark the location, proceed and then return to decrypt the "bad vid" at the end.

2. I need to try different TBC/copy guard removers before confirming #1. There are two more - one is the Sima (on loan) and the other is the 
ATV-8710 that I will have to buy.  This second one does not have as good track record removing the wavy lines as the Panasonic DMR-ES10. One online reviews say that it handles wavy lines very much like the TBC that the third party uses (DataVideo)

3. If #1 turns out to be correct, I may not be able to use a third party because all they can do is push a record button and cannot make adjustments.



Links: all copyguard removal tools degrade the picture. So using them for all source may be counter-productive.

Digital copyguard removal tool recs

stand alone DVD recorders may be better for bad quality video

but if you need to get an external TBC the ATV-8710 might work

WorldCon San Jose

  • Sep. 18th, 2017 at 11:28 AM
Just went and bought my membership, yay!

I haven't been to a con in ages, let alone a WorldCon, but this one is local to me and a bunch of people I know are coming, so I figured I had no excuse for not going.

25 Things to Know About the OTW

  • Sep. 18th, 2017 at 10:06 AM
OTW 10th anniversary history


We've been around a while now, so as part of celebrating our 10th anniversary here are 25 things to know about the OTW! https://goo.gl/FuuMWS

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I wanna get better

  • Sep. 17th, 2017 at 9:52 PM
It's not like there are a lot of people waiting for updates, I realize, but I'm sorry it's been a while since I posted any news. I have bursts of energy and I still get drained really easily, or else I have weird pain that makes it hard to be in certain positions, or things like that. I've probably pushed a little too hard, too, on doing things just because I live alone and things must be done and there's just me to do them, but sometimes that leaves me completely sapped.

I've hit a depression valley, too. I don't know if it's similar to the post-surgery depression a lot of people get, and that I got after my gallbladder surgery, but that was also because I'd had a forced withdrawal from antidepressants at the time, I think I remember. This one feels a lot worse, and now the Republicans are trying to take health care away again, which is fueling my anxiety. I fucking told everyone they wouldn't let it lie, every time people were acting like it was a triumph last time I got really angry because I knew they wouldn't let go, and here we fucking are.

The other thing that's fueling it is that I'm having a hard time with this idea of being a cancer survivor--I mentioned to [personal profile] killabeez that I was watching something and a person described herself as being a two-time cancer survivor and it hit me that that was what I am now. My experience with cancer has largely been that no one survives, not for long anyway. I have a few friends who have, but by and large the people I know don't survive, and it's very strange to think of myself as someone who has had a cancer and now has to think ahead about staying a survivor. (And of course, this is the mother of all preexisting conditions now, so if that goes away, I'm basically fucked.) I find this trippy and depressing and frightening.

Most people I'd talked to (not the doctors, but most other people) made it sound like it was cut-and-done: you had the surgery and they took out the section with the tumor and that was it. But it's not that simple, as I found out in my two-week followup on Tuesday--I see her again in a month and then they'll want to do six-month tests for a while, as they want to make sure no tumor cells are floating around, waiting to attach to the colon again and grow. So there's the year follow-up colonoscopy, and the six-months blood work tests, and check-ups as well. I can get an oncologist, or I can follow up with the surgeon; I'm inclined to stay with her since I know her and I like her. the big problem will be insurance, as my insurance company is leaving the ACA exchange and the only other semi-decent one in the network wasn't working with my clinic last year, which is why I ended up with the insurance I had this year. They're all crooks, but I have to find the crook that will cover things with the clinic where my doctor and my surgeon practice, which seems impossible right now.

Otherwise I'm slowly recovering--today was rough, I'm having really sharp pains in my lower abdomen when I move a certain way, and I took off the steristrips on the smaller incisions which on one was a mistake, because now I have a huge gaping wound there that's way too big. The steristrip was really gross, though, because it was seeping, but I traded one problem for another.

I had a lot of trouble in the hospital with bleeding and stuff like that, I won't gross you out by telling you about some of the more alarming things, but one of the incisions bled a lot and kept staining my gowns, which I could not get them to acknowledge for a couple days. It left me with this incredible gross huge scab, but the surgeon just peeled the steristrip and the scab right off on Tuesday and wow let me tell you that hurt! So I thought, well, I can woman up and take the others off…ha ha ha. Bad move.

Anyhow, right now that's where I am--just trying to get better, trying not to let the post-apocalyptic atmosphere I came home to (with the city choking on smoke and the heat that's finally, finally broken today) depress me even more, and just trying to keep going in the face of everything.

Tags:

remix! and fic update

  • Sep. 17th, 2017 at 9:45 PM
Someone did an awesome remix of one of my stories - and since I know for a fact I was a pinch hit I am extra impressed!

Transparent (1734 words) by Anonymous
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Star Trek: Alternate Original Series (Movies)
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: James T. Kirk/Leonard "Bones" McCoy, past Leonard "Bones" McCoy/Jocelyn McCoy - Relationship
Characters: James T. Kirk, Joanna McCoy, Leonard "Bones" McCoy, Jocelyn McCoy, Winona Kirk (mentions)
Additional Tags: James T. Kirk & Joanna McCoy - Freeform, Overbearing Parents, Heart-to-Heart Conversations, Divorced parents, Starfleet Academy
Summary:
The one where Joanna and Uncle Jim have a heart-to-heart, and Joanna realises there are much worse things in life than an overbearing parent.

Written for Remix Revival 2017.


I cried, ngl.

Done:
* Coursera Style week 2 story (600/600 on the dot)
* Coursera Style week 3 story, cutting the prior week's story in half (300/300)
* PODSA/SGA crossover:
The Ninth Space Wedding (Is the Charm) (3579 words) by celli
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Pod Save America (RPF), Stargate Atlantis
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Jon Favreau/Jon Lovett
Characters: Jon Favreau, Jon Lovett, Tommy Vietor, DeRay Mckesson
Additional Tags: Crossover, Alternate Universe - Fusion, space weddings, Soulmates, Tropes
Summary:
Weddings have consequences. Especially space weddings.


New:
* Coursera Style week 4 story (0/600)

Progress made:
* PODSA gift story (1069/whatever)

Other:
* basic income contest story (124/5000)
* PODSA mpreg (2062/whatever)
* Star Wars auction fic, two scenes left (704/1000+)
* AIRPF AU with [personal profile] rajkumari905 (3316/whatever)
* AIRPF auction fic (0/1000+)
Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/2w2EZto on September 17, 2017 at 04:47PM

Legends of Princess Kneesaa http://ift.tt/2jzfe1S

Tags:IFTTT, Fauxthentic History, DWCrosspost

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Currently, there are few fan-run streaming video sites that offer hosting for fanvids. Vidders.net, which is run off the Ning platform, offers members uploads at 15 fps. VidderTube, which is also run by the moderator of Vidders.net, offers members HD/30fps uploads for a modest annual fee.
 
Both Vidders.net and VidderTube are the only fan run alternatives to YouTube that are white listed for embedding at AO3.   Because they're low profile, they are able to offer YouTube vidders a haven for streaming fanvids that are  blocked on YouTube. Both networks are set up to archive and back up any content hosted on their network. 
 
 
Projects that Vidders.net/VidderTube have worked on this year:
1. Set up alternative streaming for a vidder whose vids had recently been blocked on YouTube. 
2. Set up a code to backup and/or import a vidder's entire YouTube channel to their network.
3. Offer YouTube vidders the ability to backup their channel video comments.
4. An intuitive cataloging system to filter vids by numerous criteria
5. The ability to distribute & view vids through smart TVs using Kodi/XMBC

Vidders.net current operating expenses is around $650 a year and is funded in most part by member support. Annual costs vary depending on the Ning service plan that is selected.

VidderTube is funded by memberships and the current annual cost is $250 (this cost increases with more streaming/downloads).
If you are interested in supporting Vidders.net's efforts by making a donation go here vidders.net/main/authorization/signUp (you can sign up using Google, Facebook, Twitter, or You Tube Social Logins as well as creating a Vidders.net account)

If you'd like to become a member of VidderTube to gain access to HD uploads, you can sign up for membership at Vidders.net as well by using the same link above.

Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/2fdA99k at September 17, 2017 at 10:59AM
The GOP is attempting to shove through the affordable care act repeal in the next two weeks. They are close to succeeding. Call your Senators now.

#GrahamCassidy ends #ACA pre-ex condition protections, defunds @PPact, charges older Americans 5x more & takes away vital benefits

Call your Senators 866-426-2631 #SaveMedicaid #VoteNo

To quote one mother of a disabled child: “ Because pro-life means fighting tooth and nail for every life, the broken and the whole, to be as full and meaningful and rich as possible.”

@aliranger29’s Tweet: https://twitter.com/aliranger29/status/908838780823592960?s=09

Tags:Affordable care act, aca, medicaid, disability rights, pdwcrosspost
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September 17, 2017 at 10:59AM

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OTW 10th Anniversary Chat


What were some of your early experiences like when your work gained its own fans?

*MarthaWells
I think my favorite experience is seeing the fan art, and seeing fanfic from my books show up in Yuletide. That’s hugely exciting to see fanfic and fan art of your work, especially to someone who was a fan from way back in the print zine era.

*SeananMcGuire
The first time something I’d created showed up as a fandom option for Yuletide, I literally cried. Happy tears! But it was like, HOLY WHAT NO HOW OMG VIXY LOOK AT THIS DO YOU SEE THIS. It’s amazing. It’s still amazing. I can’t read any of the fanfic of my own work, but knowing it exists makes me so happy.

Did you miss our chat with Seanan McGuire & Martha Wells? If so check out the transcript of their talk https://goo.gl/Q3Wu6P

Surfacing, the real-life edition

  • Sep. 17th, 2017 at 10:29 AM
Let's start with five good things about my life right now:

1. Ask, and ye shall receive. Under pressure at work to put together a presentation in October, I texted one of my non-profit co-founders on a whim, not expecting her to have time or interest in co-chairing a webinar. But she immediately said yes; we're having a planning session tonight. Now I'm both relieved and a little bit excited about the subject of much procrastination.

2. Our wedding celebration preparation is almost done. WHICH IS GOOD, BECAUSE IT IS NEXT WEEKEND. Can't claim I was the driving force here; my wife was much better. But still, I too knocked several preparation points off our list. There's a price to pay if neither you nor your life partner are Planners or Organizers, but we had the privilege to pay in hard coin (i.e. having vendors do more for us) rather than familial currency (i.e. putting it on a date fitting for her auntie, who would have loved to go full Weddingpalooza).

3. The cats are very affectionate these days. Still semi-feral, of course, and not into being petted :( or even touched, although Poppet tolerates it from my wife. But they are social with us, head-butting and nose-sniffing and watching us Do Important Human Things In The Kitchen through the glass without feigning the usual disinterest...okay, fine, sometimes they feign disinterest; they're cats. :)

4. If one door closes, a window opens. (It's small, but it's a window.) I was devastated when the only dedicated gluten-free sweet pastry shop in San Francisco with actually good baked goods (glutless) closed, but they have just re-opened as a delivery-only service for Fridays and weekends. Weekends aren't excellent for someone living in the East Bay, but Fridays, Fridays I shall feast on cake! Except this upcoming one, given no. 2.

5. No periods forevermore, and everything works. Once the non-surgery issues were resolved, for the most part, life without a uterus has been excellent...except on the one day of my cycle when everything is terrible and the world is dull and gray, of course. But even that pleases me conceptually, because that plus the other two signs of an upcoming period mean my left (heh) ovary has taken over the full hormone production, and I don't have to consider HRT.

Unfortunately, like humans are wont to, I make bad decisions in the spur of the moment, so right now I am struggling with an old-new issue. Oral surgery talk, pretty gruesome, so please mind the cut-tag )
Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/2haaKu9 on September 17, 2017 at 08:10AM

Pirate Bay uses visitors’ CPUs for mining digital currency Tags:not a reblog, DWCrosspost

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Off the top of my head - Harrison Ford, Martin Sheen, Richard Dreyfuss, Richard Pryor ... it's hilarious.

Yum.

  • Sep. 17th, 2017 at 9:48 AM
It's one of my favorite flavors of the year, and it's one I only taste at this season: coffee-infused honeycake batter, licked off of the scraping spoon after I put the pans in the oven.

Top of the Lake

  • Sep. 17th, 2017 at 12:00 PM
I have been writing a post about Top of the Lake for literally like 4 years. FOUR YEARS. I keep writing drafts and never finishing them, because it all just feels so enormous and too much and I need like an entire day to get all my thoughts in order.

But, it's happening today friends. IT'S HAPPENING TODAY. SO HELP ME, THERE WILL BE A POST. It will be cobbled together from different drafts I've started over the years, but IT WILL EXIST.

So, below are my thoughts, which were written a few years ago, before I'd seen Mad Max: Fury Road, before Jessica Jones, before Wonder Woman.

Anyway, this post is still not even a fraction of the thoughts I have in my head about this show, BUT. We are doing this. THIS POST IS GETTING POSTED.

*

Well, there's now not one, but two versions of Broadchurch (both starring David Tennant!) and I still haven't gotten around to the show that, to me, is the far more subversive, far more interesting, far richer and more beautiful original version of what has now become a multi-season franchise.

I haven't been able to write about Top of the Lake until now because my talents do not lie in talking about the things I find overwhelmingly amazing. I had to wait such a long time for the edges to fade, for this show to settle in my head and become digestible (this is after multiple viewings, because of course I rewatched parts of it ad nauseum) and analyzable and describable.

The non spoilery version is this: Robin (Elizabeth Moss) is a detective who comes back to her small town in New Zealand to visit with her gravely ill mother. At the same time a 12 year old girl in the town is discovered to be pregnant. Robin is called in, because of her big city specialist training, to help interview the girl - however the girl claims she remembers nothing, and Robin ends up leading the investigation into what happened. To unravel this mystery Robin will have to face old friends and enemies, the local gang, police corruption and the secrets of her own family.

If you, like me, are utterly bored by detective stories and mysteries, let me attempt another pitch: Top of the Lake is probably the greatest story I've ever seen about a heroine who is flawed and competent and human, who's allowed to unravel, whose power is never undermined even when she's as low as she's ever going to get, even when the odds are insurmountable. Robin is a heroine you root for when, like Buffy, she has nothing left but herself, her body, her wits. She's someone you root for while you recognize her blind spots, her privileges, her biases. Robin is someone who always, always comes through. Stripped down to the bone she rises, like Lazarus, unstoppable in her passion, her moral duty to do right by the marginalized, her incredible strength.

The amazing thing about Top of the Lake is that it's about a girl who loses everything, but never loses herself. It's about trauma, it's about survival, it's about revenge, it's about justice, it's about compassion and love and forgiveness, it's about asking the ugly questions about ourselves and being uncomfortable and trying as hard as you can to be the best person you can be. It's about trying to make sure no one has to suffer the way you've suffered.

And of course - Jane Campion is an amazing director, and stepping into her world for 7 episodes was like suddenly finding myself in an alternative universe where complex, challenging visual stories are told for me, as a woman. Where the male gaze is not even a distant memory.

Here's one last way of putting it: Robin and Leslie Knope (of Parks and Rec) are two extremes on the same continuum. Leslie is Robin in a light-hearted, brightly lit comedy - Robin is Leslie in a graphic, gritty detective story. Robin is the grown up version of Veronica Mars. The settings, the moods, the tropes are different but the women are the same - beacons of resilience, fortitude, open-eyed optimism, competence, who are the heroes rather than the victims of their narratives.

spoilers )

*

And now an addendum written by today!me:

Top of the Lake is the spiritual mother of so many modern shows, and I'm so happy (SO SO HAPPY) that I get to place it a broader than ever tapestry of women heroes of all kinds.

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Database Design Question

  • Sep. 16th, 2017 at 5:40 PM
 If you are designing an Excel database with creator names how do you handle entries where the creator is listed as "possibly Morgan Dawn"? 

I can think of several ways...

Creator:  Unknown-Morgan Dawn might be best.  That way if you sort, all the Unknown-Morgan Dawn works will still be listed together.  They won't be listed next to the confirmed Morgan Dawn works, but still searchable. If and when the ID is confirmed it could then be moved to "Morgan Dawn" or even updated to "Mary Sue Lamb". It could also handle multiple guesses: "Unknown-Morgan Dawn-Mary Sue Lamb

The idea is to leave "Unknown" for those were we have no clue, and keep the ones where we are guessing in another grouping.

The other way is to have a second column that would add a Y/N in  "Presumed Creator" but I don't like separating data. Plus one more cell to fill in is a pain.


OTW 10th Anniversary Chat


What things have you been excited to see in recent years, either regarding fandom or work in your genre(s)?

*Catherine R.
I really like fanfiction and its explosion on the internet. I think fanfic is a great way for people to learn the craft skills of writing. Many of my college students fall in love with writing that way: by reading fanfic and then starting to write it themselves. I always encourage them to go for it! I love the supportive structure it creates for imagination and fantasy to run wild. I think that realm is so important. Imagination lets us explore quandaries of desire and justice and truth and conflict: all the central problems of what it means to be human.

*Christina L.
It’s been incredibly exciting to see so many writers from our fandom specifically or fandom in general out there publishing books. Of course we all know the big ones—EL James, Cassie Clare—but there are others from the Twi world that had fantastic voices and ideas and who are now also bestsellers. Sally Thorne, Alice Clayton, Nina Bocci, Leisa Rayven, Mariana Zapata, Amanda Weaver—all of these women wrote fantastic fic.

Did you miss our chat with Christina Lauren & Catherine Roach? If so check out the transcript of their talk! https://goo.gl/8DR1PG

time to break out this icon

  • Sep. 16th, 2017 at 8:36 PM
I don't know where the year went, but suddenly we're here, gearing up for all the Christmas exchanges.

Yuletide just closed nominations over at [community profile] yuletide_admin. (I'll be requesting my perennials again - my once-a-year chance! There's nothing else I want as much, or at least not with as little a chance of getting written elsewhere.)

[community profile] holmestice - which this week announced dates for this year's winter round - is my chance for two other tiny fandoms, plus of course the ones that don't qualify for Yuletide. (I'm planning to add A Study in Emerald and Exit Sherlock Holmes to my ACD and Sherlock requests this time. Exit Sherlock Holmes is a new discovery for me; I stumbled across it earlier this year. Anyone else read it?)

And last but hopefully not least, [community profile] public_call just announced this year's schedule and rules. My nominations this year promise to be Missy-heavy, in addition to the usual things. :D

Oh, and even [community profile] holly_poly, which has a January deadline, has already posted a tentative schedule! And here, too, there will definitely be more Missy nominations for me in addition to my Twelve/Missy/Jack OT3.

(Btw, speaking of Missy, over at [community profile] missy_fest we've revealed the first of the Missy This Fic remixes, and the rest will be revealed every other day. It's a tiny fest with only four participants total! But it was totally worth it, and there's some amazing Missy fic to read. ♥)

Gratitudes

  • Sep. 16th, 2017 at 11:52 AM
1. Tasty leftovers for lunch: baked rice (lemon, cinnamon, curry leaves), topped with spicy kale (ginger, soy, and a hot red pepper from the CSA) with a dollop of chicken schmaltz just to make the whole thing richer and more flavorful.

2. Rereading the introduction to The Bitch is Back this morning and being both comforted and inspired by the existence of many smart, thoughtful, passionate women determined to wrest the most out of midlife.

3. The fact that my son, who is going on eight, still wanted nail polish this weekend and still watches Shimmer & Shine.

4. Beautiful warm late-summer day, which means I'm still wearing sleeveless shirts and sandals, both of which make me happy.

5. I'm going to give myself a pedicure this afternoon. \o/!

How are y'all?

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Do you want a letter?

  • Sep. 15th, 2017 at 9:16 PM
Tell me you want to receive a letter by leaving a snail mail address below. (Comments are screened, of course!) If you don't mind, also mention something you like about getting letters. Do you love decorative stationary? Want a stamp with an animal on it? Or concerning content--tidbits about daily life, a favourite poem, an explanation of a German thing that always puzzled you? A nonsensical drawing?

Brought to you by Lotsa Spare Time and also I Bought Three Different Colours Of Ink That Languish In My Stationary Drawer, Together With Said Stationary.

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Banner by Alice of a book/eReader with an OTW bookmark and a USB plug going into the spine

TWC's issue 25 is out! Essay topics include book history, women's writing, Teen Wolf, World of Warcraft, Sherlock, cosplay, Lego, Harry Potter & more https://goo.gl/dN3m5a

Fucking ableist bullshit

  • Sep. 13th, 2017 at 9:51 PM
I have for whatever reason been on a horror movie kick lately. Because sometimes it's fun watching people be horribly surprised when a ghost summoning in a haunted mansion goes horribly wrong or whatever. Especially when they do stupid stuff along the way.

One movie had a somewhat satisfying ending (bad guy gets trapped in a room rull of angry ghosts of people that were killed as a result of his douchenaggery!) in a way that was completely antithetical to the setup (spooky ghosts that were scaring the protagonist and family, are ... suddenly friendly to her wtf).

But the one I just finished watching makes me want to *kick things*. And I don't know what's worse, the fact that it was written this way or the fact that I saw it coming.

CW: anti-autism wtfery. Also spoilers for unnamed movie.

Read more... )

That beauty and the beast project I'm playing with? I keep being tempted to make the Beast autistic, and the enchantress or fairy or whoever cursed him into beast form just totally misread him (or he said something true but impolite and pissed her off) and is an asshole for what she did, or something.

I worry about doing it wrong, because -- as much as I suspect I have some aspergers-y traits, I am totally not autistic, and risk falling into cliches -- but at least I wouldn't be *points upward* THAT fucking wrong

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Moon Woke Me Up Nine Times: Selected Haiku of Basho, by Bashō Matsuo, translated by David Young: A delightful collection. David Young's introduction is informative and easy to read, which is a rarity in poetry collections and must be praised, though you won't learn a thing about Bashō from it. Young says you can get that everywhere else; instead, the introduction addresses Young's approach to translating these poems, and I was quite surprised at the amount of latitude Young gave himself. Due to the differences between the number of syllables in English and Japanese, he disregards the West's belief that haiku must conform to a 5-7-5 arrangement, which is fine by me, but he also elides cultural references he thought would be lost on English-speaking audiences, reorders the lines themselves, and even removes the occasional question mark, and I don't know how I feel about that. The result is lovely, but is it an honest reflection of Bashō's words?

In Young's hands, Bashō's poetry is clear and simple, each haiku a meditation on life and nature. They are, by turns, longing, playful, soothing, and contemplative, and it's remarkable how many sensory details they include. So much is packed into these little sentences, giving you brief glimpses of another life, transporting you to where Bashō was three hundred years ago, listening to the rain, gardening, or:
Big white leeks
washing them off
feeling how cold
The poetry is transcendent, in that it moved me to a different place. Once I came back, though, I wondered a lot about the choices Young made. I really would have liked some translator's notes (outside of those in the introduction), but instead I'll have to content myself with reading Jane Reichhold's Basho: The Complete Haiku and go over her notes to see how their translations differ. This is actually Young's idea, and he helpfully includes an appendix that correlates his page numbers with Reichhold's numbering system for easy comparison.

Really accessible, and highly recommended.

Five Things Naomi Novik Said

  • Sep. 13th, 2017 at 10:31 AM
Five Things an OTW Volunteer Said

As part of our Five Things an OTW Volunteer Said series, we have a special anniversary edition with OTW co-founder Naomi Novik. She discusses its evolution during her 10 yrs volunteering for it: https://goo.gl/nJXJrY

العربيةBahasa IndonesiacatalàČeštinadanskDeutschΕλληνικάEnglishespañolfrançaisitalianomagyarNederlandsnorskpolskiportuguês brasileiroportuguês europeuRomânăРусскийsuomisvenska中文

On Anxiety, but funny

  • Sep. 13th, 2017 at 8:25 AM
That "Distracted Boyfriend Meme"? It's really not that funny in the original, but I keep cracking up about all the clever fandom renditions...and threw my hat in the ring to make one myself (with that handy meme generator out there on the internets):

I made dis (on tumblr)


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Yuletide

  • Sep. 13th, 2017 at 8:15 AM
ON THE PLUS SIDE, Y'ALL, Yuletide nominations are open!

These are mine, below the cut: My Yuletide Noms )

What, ouch, and also -- already?

  • Sep. 13th, 2017 at 7:43 AM
:: It's raining. I would have never grasped the weight of this statement in 2012 when I came here, but the song is true, mildly modified: It never rains in Northern California in summer. It's the softest and gentlest reminder of climate change, and the polar opposite of what the folks in the Caribbean, Cuba, and states like Florid and Texas experience. But...it's a reminder.

:: Also a reminder of my short memory when it comes to non-chronic pain: God, my lower jaw hurts. Yesterday I tried to have the implant for my lower jaw put in, finally. But even with "perfect-looking" bone (after chewing in the front to remind my jaw of its job; after popping calcium pills like it was my job) there was simply too little of it post-accident. Cutting for tooth surgery details )

:: My boss is back in the office today. I am quivering in what might feasibly be boots (given said weather situation).

Sep. 13th, 2017

  • 10:29 AM
I know everyone is tired of hearing how busy I am, lol, but this week has been truly ridiculous. In a lot of ways it's been filled with wonderful things, as well as boring stressful things (contacting city hall, the water company, the electric company...), and in a way I'm grateful that I can survive this kind of week now, disability-wise, since I definitely couldn't have a year ago. But I'm... intensely at the end of my rope, and things are not going to calm down for like, at least another 48 hours, and IDK if I can honestly survive that long.

stuff and things )

Not-exactly-fmk: Gor and Yuletide

  • Sep. 12th, 2017 at 7:05 PM
So in FMK reading adventures, I finally finished the first Gor book, that was voted K early on but I decided I wanted to read before dumping just so I could say I had.

I should have trusted y'all: it was mostly just incredibly pointlessly bland, occasionally rising to actively annoying. It wasn't even really bad enough to be interestingly bad. There was a lot more flying around on giant soulbonded warbirds than I expected, tbh (somehow I had though that Tarnsman meant "man of the mountain lake country" but I think that was giving him too much credit for having a vocabulary,) but the warbirds are so badly wordbuilt and lacking in individual personality and the flying scenes so lacking in joy that the only time I actually cared about them was when the abused half-starved ones were about to eat the MC and I roused enough to cheer them on. The plot is built on bad characterization and improbable coincidences; the language aspires to basic competence; you can very easy disassemble it into its component stereotypes; and all sense-of-wonder or hints that the MC is not a sociopath are missing. Also amused that the author refuses to comment on whether it's John Carter of Mars fanfic (it's really badly done John Carter of Mars fanfic, omg.) I understand the series gets far more batshit later, but I don't think I need to read far enough to find out.

Also, thank you all for your help with picking a yuletide nomination! I shall be ignoring the clear preference of the poll, and nominating Mr. Trash Wheel RPF. He didn't win, but he did win the vote of everybody I know who has taken a selfie with him, and their votes count 10x, sorry.

(this is Mr. Trash Wheel: )

I will also be nominating Professor Trash Wheel and a five foot long West African Ball Python as characters, of course. I am stuck on who should be my fourth nom, though. A modular robotic eel that hunts for water pollution? Lynyrd Skymmer? Some other celebrity of the waters that I don't yet know about?


Clearly there's a market for Always Coming Home, though. Someone else should nominate it. (If I requested it, it'd just be as "tell me a story of the Valley", so I don't care about characters.)


Meanwhile, I re-read The Girl With The Silver Eyes to prepare to nominate. That one does hold up very well! Things I had forgotten about this book: the muumuu wearing old fat lady who lives alone with her cats and her books and gives no fucks and is #rolemodel. The fact that Katie can TALK TO CATS. The constant references to other YA fantasy/sf novels by the same imprint that she is reading. How much this book distrusts all adult men. How much this book also distrusts all non-readers. How yes they have psi powers and are super-smart, but they're also explicitly non-neurotypical in a way that read a lot more Autism Spectrum than any of the books about supposedly autistic kids that I was reading at the time, and that's more of an issue for them than the psi powers.

The book really needs an active fandom if only so we can have epic fanwars about whether they spoilers )

Anyway I am stuck for character noms there too, because I want all the kid characters but I also want Mr. C, Mrs. M, Miss K and Jackson Jones.

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