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Jun. 27th, 2017 09:45 am
oursin: Brush the Wandering Hedgehog by the fire (Default)
[personal profile] oursin
Happy birthday, [personal profile] coalescent!

Oh, God will save her, fear you not

Jun. 27th, 2017 04:42 am
sovay: (I Claudius)
[personal profile] sovay
I enjoyed this review of a new biography of A.E. Housman, but I got to the last paragraph and disagreed so violently that I spent my shower fuming about it:

But that sweetness, verging on sentimentality, is also Housman's limitation: the lads and lasses slumbering under the grass, never growing old or sick or worrying about how to find a job. Sadness in Housman is a one-size-fits-all emotion, not one rooted in particulars. It puddles up automatically. And reading "A Shropshire Lad" you can find yourself becoming narcotized against feelings that are deeper and more complicated. That may be the real secret of the book's enduring popularity, the way it substitutes for a feeling of genuine loss the almost pleasant pain of nostalgia.

The reviewer claims earlier that "one reason 'A Shropshire Lad' has been so successful is that readers find there what they want to find," so perhaps I am merely following this well-worn tack, but I don't see how you can read Housman and miss the irony, the wryness, the sometimes bitterness and often ambiguity that never prevents the pleasure of a line that turns perfectly on itself. Some of his best poems seem to take themselves apart as they go. Some of them are hair-raising. Some of them are really funny. (It is impossible for me to take "When I was one-and-twenty" as a serious lament. In the same vein, it wasn't until tonight in the shower that I finally noticed that "Is my team ploughing" owes a cynical debt to "The Twa Corbies.") That is much more complicated than a haze of romantic angst and the vague sweet pain of lost content, especially seeing how much of Housman's language is vividly, specifically physical for all its doomed youth and fleeting time, not dreamy at all. Shoulder the sky, my lad, and drink your ale. I am not sure why the reviewer knocks Housman's Shropshire for not being "particular," either. Of course it's not actual Shropshire, where the poet himself acknowledged he never even spent much time. It's Housman's Arcadia, et ego and all. I finished the review and found myself thinking of Catullus—again, I had to have my hair full of soap before I realized why. I don't understand why anyone looks for the undiluted Housman in A Shropshire Lad any more than the Lesbia poems should be assumed to contain the authentic Catullus. Pieces of both of them, sure. But my grandmother didn't need the identity of the addressee of "Shake hands, we shall never be friends, all's over" pinned down in order to copy out the poem and save it after a college relationship broke up badly. (I thought it was hers for years.) Who cares if its second person was Moses Jackson or fictional? It spoke to a real loss. I don't think there is anything anesthetizing in that. I doubt Housman would have wanted the particulars known, anyway. I have to figure out a way to stop fuming and start being asleep.
[syndicated profile] apod_feed

If you could stand on the surface of the newly discovered Earth-sized exoplanet TRAPPIST-1f, what would you see? If you could stand on the surface of the newly discovered Earth-sized exoplanet TRAPPIST-1f, what would you see?


Daily Happiness

Jun. 27th, 2017 12:54 am
torachan: ryu from kimi ni todoke eating ramen (ramen)
[personal profile] torachan
1. I had a nice, relaxing birthday. I really didn't want to go anywhere or do anything, so I didn't!

2. It was pretty hot and muggy today, but if the forecast is to be believed (and I would like to believe it), today was the worst and it should be getting cooler for the next ten days or so. (It's definitely cooled off a lot tonight.)

3. We ordered Indian food for dinner and it was super tasty. The place we got from was new to us, but I will definitely be ordering from them again in the future. Among other things, we got mango chicken masala, which was amazing. Also cheese naan.

4. I happened to see a really cute Darth Maul Funko Pop the other day and ordered it from Amazon as a birthday present for myself and it actually came right on my birthday. :D

5. Chloe is such a pretty kitty!

sexting.

Jun. 27th, 2017 08:48 am
forfun: (Default)
[personal profile] forfun posting in [community profile] bakerstreet



the phone sex /sexting meme

what it says on the tin. leave a blank comment, include your preferences or a starter, it's all good. reply to others with a text, a dirty picture (please link all nsfw things!), misfires, misdials, drunk filthy voicemails, sexy skype sessions, whatever your heart desires.

Meanwhile...

Jun. 26th, 2017 11:44 pm
owlmoose: (ffix - garnet)
[personal profile] owlmoose
This past weekend was super and fabulous. I was fortunate enough to be able to snag four tickets to Hamilton for this past Friday, and I invited [personal profile] justira and [twitter.com profile] kaytaylorrea to join me. They both came into town, [personal profile] justira with their partner in tow, and the four of us had a great time not just at the show, but hanging out in SF.

Friday's show was a matinee, so we grabbed a quick lunch beforehand, then an early dinner after. The show was just as wonderful the second time, and in some ways I feel like it was better -- when I went in April, this particular troupe had been together for less than a month. Now that they've had two more months to work together, the ensemble gelled more, and I saw more nuances in some of the performances. I also saw a couple of different actors, in particular a different Angelica, and although her voice wasn't quite as powerful, I loved the acting choices she brought to the role. Another thing I noticed overall is just how funny this performance was -- this particular cast plays up the humorous moments in the songs and the choreography in a way I found really effective.

All three of my co-attendees loved the show as well, despite bringing very different levels of familiarity with it (one who has listened to the album a million times, one who'd never heard the music but read all the lyrics in advance, and one coming in almost completely cold), and it was fun to talk about how their various expectations colored their watching experience.

On Saturday, [personal profile] justira and I met up with [personal profile] forestofglory to wander the Ferry Building and Farmers Market. We noshed our way through, one of my favorite ways to eat breakfast in the city, including some breakfast ice cream at Humphry Slocombe (taking advantage of the lack of line). After that I met Kay for a Giants game; our boys lost (not unsurprisingly; the team is TERRIBLE this year), but we still had fun. Then we all (minus [personal profile] forestofglory, who had a prior engagement) gathered at my place for more chatting and hanging out until far too late, chattering about fandom and everything else under the sun, driving poor T to distraction I'm sure. I was particularly happy to see how well everyone clicked, considering that my two guests didn't really know each other before the weekend. There's nothing better than introducing two friends and watching them develop a quick rapport. :)

As Kay said a couple of times over the weekend, our parents were wrong: always make friends with strangers on the Internet. Sure, there's a risk, as people are always a risk, but the rewards are one thousand percent worth it.

toothpicks and glue

Jun. 26th, 2017 11:30 pm
runpunkrun: combat boot, pizza, camo pants = punk  (Default)
[personal profile] runpunkrun
One of my closet doors has been messed up for a long time, and after years of it grinding along horribly and throwing metal shavings all over the place I finally got tired of it. So today my dad and I fixed it with—I swear to god—some glue and a couple of toothpicks. It's just such a dad move, as well as completely in character for him. Apparently it's a trick he learned from my mother's father. So I'm having a moment of belated father's day reflection.

And now my closet door actually slides in the track and I can reach the clothes on that side of my closet again! Thanks, Dad.

FFA DW Post # 686 - Placeholder

Jun. 27th, 2017 08:05 am
sunnymodffa: Picture of a sheep with tentacles (Cthulhu Sheep)
[personal profile] sunnymodffa posting in [community profile] fail_fandomanon
 
Placeholder

New Rule updates:
-All US Politics must stick to one thread.
-For a wide variety of reasons, no deliberate variant fonts, no emoji in thread titles. You can use them in the comment, but not in the title.

All the [community profile] fail_fandomanon Rules and Information (and Ban Requests): http://fail-fandomanon.dreamwidth.org/1076.html. The short version: no embeds, don't out people's real names, don't be that much of an asshole, body fluids are off topic, Mods reserve the right to freeze, screen, and delete the fuck out of stuff. FFA discussion covers a wide variety of topics and has a very flexible view of 'fandom' that includes politics, current events, and cooking techniques. FFA is a Choose NOT to Warn experience. Meme away.

Other posts and resources relevant to your interests:

NB: Meme rules do not require spoiler cuts/white-text/etc. Though, if you want to use spoiler cuts, a wonderful nonnie found a way to add them to DW. Just use the code below.
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decide for me

Jun. 26th, 2017 11:44 pm
boxofdelights: (Default)
[personal profile] boxofdelights
I am supposed to go to rounds every Tuesday from 6 to 7 at the raptor rehab where I volunteer. It's good to be up-to-date on protocols, and to get the news about the cases. On the other hand, there is always a lot of information I don't need, and there are other ways to get the information I do need.

Tomorrow night there is a storytelling event at a coffee house from 7 to 9. "The event will showcase a selection of community storytellers sharing stories on the theme of food and farm. We’ve invited six storytellers — writers, poets, performers, journalists, speakers — to prepare true, personal stories and share them in front of a live audience." I'd like to go. I am always interested in anything that could help me become a better storyteller.

I could skip rounds.
I could leave rounds 10 minutes early and go to both, but I hate getting up when everyone else is still sitting patiently, and also that would be a very long evening for me.
I could just stay home. Staying home is always good.

two books, neither alike in dignity

Jun. 26th, 2017 10:42 pm
metaphortunate: (Default)
[personal profile] metaphortunate
It's book talking time!

Coincidentally, I have recently read two separate books about French spy-courtesans in the 1920s. One was Alexander Chee's The Queen of the Night. The other - well, I call it a book, but it is an incomplete series, by Jo Graham, beginning with The General's Mistress and continuing in The Emperor's Agent and The Marshal's Lover.

Alexander Chee, award-winning author, is interviewed about TQOTN in Vogue and reviewed in the New York Times. Jo Graham is interviewed about her books in Amazing Stories and reviewed on, well, Goodreads. There is a great difference in the height at which your brow is meant to sit while reading these books.

Which just goes to show why you shouldn't judge a book by its cover.

The Queen of the Night is rapey-er than Game of Thrones, and you will not collect that from reading any of those interviews or reviews, but holy shit, it's grim and unrelenting. There is a lot of sex in this book - never let anyone tell you that Serious Authors don't write sex. What Serious Authors don't write is enjoyable sex, because that has the filthy female whiff of romance about it, and Chee will have nothing to do with that trap: enjoy 561 pages of bleak fucking, at best survival sex, at worst violent rape. But it's described like opera! So, you know: it's Art.

Whereas if on the other hand you like slumming, you could read a page-turner of a picaresque sex-and-war-and mysticism perspective on the Napoleonic Wars that is super, super interesting for someone who has tended to read about it from the English perspective! It reminds me very much of that Roger Ebert quote that's been floating around Twitter:
There's a learning process that moviegoers go through. They begin in childhood without sophistication or much taste, and for example, like "Gamera'' more than "Air Force One" because flying turtles are obviously more entertaining than United States presidents. Then they grow older and develop "taste,'' and prefer "Air Force One," which is better made and has big stars and a more plausible plot. (Isn't it more believable, after all, that a president could single-handedly wipe out a planeload of terrorists than that a giant turtle could spit gobs of flame?) Then, if they continue to grow older and wiser, they complete the circle and return to "Gamera'' again, realizing that while both movies are preposterous, the turtle movie has the charm of utter goofiness--and, in an age of flawless special effects, it is somehow more fun to watch flawed ones.
Both books are preposterous. But Jo Graham's books are cheerfully preposterous, with love at first sight being based on mystical reincarnation through the ages and a vow between Cleopatra's handmaidens or some such thing; and Alexander Chee's characters blankly drift through the ludicrous motions of a musicless opera plot because, as The Worst Bestsellers likes to say about characters in books like these, they are lizard people. Human motivations and actions are foreign to them! They hatched from eggs and now they are wearing human skin suits and that's why the author acts like their entirely, artificially plot-motivated behavior is normal and requires no explanation. It is normal, for lizards!

Whereas Jo Graham's books involve people having difficult but ultimately productive conversations about ambition and infidelity and polyamory - they don't have that vocabulary, but the ideas are definitely there - and people who aren't entirely good or bad, and an enby protagonist, and conflicted feelings about children, and the fear of aging and death, and politics that are rooted in the deep personal urge for freedom, and yes - magic, and sex, and fun! I got the third one as part of a StoryBundle, which was annoying as it spoiled the first two, obviously! But the moment I finished it I bought the other two anyway. Spoilers don't matter that much - they're not mystery novels, if you're writing about the Napoleonic Wars the interest of your story had better not depend on the reader not knowing how things turn out. The Queen of the Night I got from the library, and I tried to finish it, I really did. It just wasn't giving me anything to work with. It is the kind of book where spoilers matter - my loan of it ran out before I made it to the end, and I placed a hold on it to check it out again just because I did, honestly, want to know the answer to the mystery. But when my hold on it came due, I admitted that I did not want to know enough to drag myself through to the end of a very, very, very boring book, and I never checked it out the second time.

And, incidentally, between the grim, boring, rapey book, and the picaresque, sexy, fun book? The fun book is the one that's based on a real historical person. Maria Versfelt was a Dutch adventure star, as she is delightfully described in that Dutch website (thanks Google Translate), and her published memoirs are the basis for Graham's books. I think the reincarnation thing is invention, though.
[syndicated profile] angry_asian_man_feed

Posted by Phil Yu

These snaps should give you a sense of what it's like for anyone who appears to be Muslim to travel by plane.



The thing about commercial air travel is that you never what kind of weird or awful or questionable people you're going to be forced to fly with. For instance, this recent flight where a Sikh man boarded the plane. No, I'm not calling the Sikh passenger weird or awful or questionable. I'm talking about the asshole who freaked out over the sight of a guy with a turban and beard and broadcast his racist assumptions on social media.

Because a guy who looks like that could definitely be a terrorist, right? This jerk recently documented his ridiculous prejudice and paranoia on Snapchat, posting photos of the Sikh passenger seated nearby, taken surreptitiously over the course of the flight, chronicling his activities with fearful commentary like, "Please god just let the man sleep" and "Ok he just walk to the back of the Plane then to the front then to his seat."

Screen grabs of the Snapchat posts were shared on social media by educator and activist Simran Jeet Singh, who is also Sikh and is all too familiar with the "uncomfortable stares" of fellow passengers in an era of heightened Islamophobia. And yet Singh tries to show compassion even when faced with such ignorance.

"This series of snaps should give you a sense of what it's like for anyone who appears to be Muslim to travel by plane," Singh wrote in a series of tweets. "As a Sikh who flies frequently, I'm no stranger to the uncomfortable stares and misguided fears people have of me."

Read more »

posting spam heads-up --

Jun. 27th, 2017 12:54 am
taichara: (Desert's Jewelbox -- mail)
[personal profile] taichara
Tomorrow I'm posting nine drabbles, and because they're all for [community profile] tic_tac_woe they all need to be separate posts. AO3's not an option because they're all more Godfire.

Sorry all!
umadoshi: (Deadline Russian cover)
[personal profile] umadoshi
New DW Communities

[dreamwidth.org profile] drawesome is "a friendly community of fan-artists who enjoy drawing. We hope to inspire and motivate each other to practice and hone our drawing skills in a stress-free, supportive environment."

[dreamwidth.org profile] comicsroundtable is "a fannish community for comics discussion, reviews, and general chat."


Fannish/Geeky Things

Neat Twitter thread on Wonder Woman costuming, written by a costume designer.

"Wonder Woman Actor Says Chief Is Actually a Demi-God". [io9]

"Dungeons & Dragons Wouldn’t Be What It Is Today Without These Women".

"More Murderbot Adventures from Martha Wells". [Tor.com]


Miscellaneous

"Disney Princesses Reimagined Years Later As Queens By Daughters And Mothers". "The main idea was to portray the relationship between a true mother and daughter as the same princesses a generation apart to show the similarities, the features that are alike." (Related ~10-minute YouTube video, which I haven't watched.)

"Report Finds Diverse Movies Outperform White Ones At Every Level".

"Declawing: A new study shows we can’t look the other way".

"Host a Silent Reading Party in 7 Easy Steps". [Book Riot]

"Why Honeybees Are The Wrong Problem To Solve".

"Invention Saves Wildlife From Drowning in Swimming Pools".

"Sitka artist designs slinky dress from 20,000 salmon bones".

"How I use comic books as a learning tool in my social studies classroom". [March 2016]



On Atlas Obscura:

--"Most of the World’s Bread Clips Are Made by a Single Company".

--"Jupiter Is Even Weirder Than We Thought".

--"Laurel Dinosaur Park: This dig site outside D.C. is known for its exceptionally high density of baby dinosaur fossils and dinosaur eggs".

--"The Wartime Spies Who Used Knitting as an Espionage Tool".

30 Day Music Meme - Day 26

Jun. 26th, 2017 11:17 pm
lebateleur: Sweet Woodruff (Default)
[personal profile] lebateleur
26 - a song that makes you want to fall in love
  Peter Gabriel – I Have the Touch
  Yes, yes, technically a song about extroversion, but the mixture of enthusiasm, optimism, and restless anticipation and dissatisfaction in these lyrics comes closer to my experience of falling in love than anything.

これで以上です。

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A universe of unmapped grief and love
And new master light is beyond
The pleiades and plow and southern stars.

O soaring
Icarus of outworld, burn bright
The traceries of known skymarks,
Slide the highway planets behind
Your clear waxed wings.

Go conquer the everywhere left
Beyond your sad confinement
In a predicted bonehouse,
Witch thrown riddle of flesh
And water.

O soar until nothing
remains but great glittering holes
In the black godspun shirt over your head.

- John Fairfax