Punk
22 October 2017 @ 11:36 am
The Grip of It, by Jac Jemc  
The Grip of It, by Jac Jemc:

Normal feels like a performance today, but we fake our way through, hopeful we'll grow into our actions.

That line comes from the end of the book, but even from the first page this story feels performative rather than sincere: The happy couple, moving into their first home. The happy couple, buying paint at the hardware store. The happy couple, being happy. It's superficial and uninteresting, as are the characters. The book is in first person, and husband and wife take turns as narrators, but it's impossible to tell who's in charge of what chapter unless one spouse specifically mentions the other; they're basically interchangeable for most of the book.

But maybe, I said to myself as I continued to read against my better judgment, they become more real when forced to confront the—

No. That did not happen. If anything they become even harder to relate to once the house starts acting up.

So they're useless, but the house? The house has all the hallmarks of being haunted: Ooh, who moved that vase. Ooh, what's that moaning noise. Ooh, the stain on the wall is spreading. The author ticks all the boxes on the checklist, but never builds on them. A misplaced vase, on its own, isn't scary. It's a signifier that doesn't signify anything. It's only half the equation. It's like being handed a fake cobweb and a plastic spider and being told it's a haunted house.

This book filled my hands with plastic spiders but failed to make a cohesive—or even engaging—story out of them. There's nothing meaningful at stake here. The house, for all its antics, is only slightly menacing, and its two indistinguishable narrators never made me feel anything but irritation.

Contains: Body horror, relationship horror, suggested domestic abuse, mental health issues, addiction (gambling), suicide attempts.
 
 
celli
22 October 2017 @ 11:59 am
Pre cleaning person cleaning  
I folded and spindled my budget to add a cleaning person for three hours once a month for various physical and mental reasons. Of course, there's some decluttering etc that needs to get done before she gets here in two hours:

* load dishwasher
* declutter kitchen counter
* toss nonfunctional cat feeder
* garbage/recycling off windowsill
* empty cat food cans in recycling

* declutter misc surfaces
* hang up hoodies
* get dressed


Optional:
* clothes on bed to be done while she's here
* wipe down sink (it's a little embarrassing)
* garbage & recycling out
* hit a nearby ATM for tip and laundry money

Totes doable, right?
Tags:
 
 
this is not in the proper spirit of rumspringa
22 October 2017 @ 10:10 am
2199 / More graaaading.  


11 / 38 essays. (Class 1) 29% done at 15:45



4 / 22 essays. (Class 2) 18% done at 15:45

I need a distraction every time I come up for air from this batch of papers, so I'll try to write a quick comment fic below when I take breaks. I will take prompts as well, if anyone's got any: give me a fandom I know (things I've written in more recently are probably better), a pairing or character(s), and an AU scenario, and I will give you an AU snippet.

(Plus, [community profile] fandomlovespuertorico is still going. I'm offering one fic in MCU, Wonder Woman, or Star Wars; current bid's $50, but there's time for that to rise! All proceeds go to benefit the rebuilding efforts in Puerto Rico.)

Comment Fic:

Constellations, Wonder Woman, Diana/Steve
Habitat Building, MCU, Sam/Steve, for [personal profile] sheafrotherdon
Gold Star, Wonder Woman, Gen, for [personal profile] celli
 
 
this is not in the proper spirit of rumspringa
21 October 2017 @ 04:33 pm
2198 / Graaaading  


11 / 38 essays. (Class 1) 29% done at 22:00



0 / 22 essays. (Class 2) 0% done at 16:30

I need a distraction every time I come up for air from this batch of papers, so I'll try to write a quick comment fic below when I take breaks. I will take prompts as well, if anyone's got any: give me a fandom I know (things I've written in more recently are probably better), a pairing or character(s), and an AU scenario, and I will give you an AU snippet.

(Also, bidding's still going over at [community profile] fandomlovespuertorico. I'm offering one fic in MCU, Wonder Woman, or Star Wars; current bid's $50, but there's time for that to rise! All proceeds go to benefit the rebuilding efforts in Puerto Rico.)

Comment Fic:

Constellations, Wonder Woman, Diana/Steve
Habitat Building, MCU, Sam/Steve, for [personal profile] sheafrotherdon
 
 
21 October 2017 @ 05:30 pm
A Secret History of Salt [by Teaotter, Leverage/MCU]  

Posted by siria

Her face softens into something he can't read. "We stole you, you see, and we're not going to give you back."
 
 
Oyceter
21 October 2017 @ 12:20 am
[Daily happiness]  
1. Was in Berkeley for a conference, and it was nice to be around campus again!

2. Had braised meat rice for lunch, then got pastries from the Chinese bakery and pearl milk tea, yum. And the lunch place was playing Cpop and made me slightly homesick for Taiwan.

3. Watched The Snake Prince, a Shaw Brothers movie, with CB and [personal profile] jhameia and it is... quite a thing. Let's just say there was much more disco music and dancing than I had expected.
 
 
 
kass
20 October 2017 @ 09:58 am
Gratitudes  
1. Beautiful sunny morning. Beautiful hills. Beautiful skies.

2. A latte. Because latte.

3. Goofy kid-and-kitten shenanigans this morning before school.

4. Shabbat is coming and I get to have Shabbat dinner with some people I love!

5. The Good Place is on On Demand, so last night I watched the two-part S2 premiere and it made me happy.

How are y'all?
 
 
the_shoshanna
20 October 2017 @ 09:29 am
dilemma solved!  
Thanks to everyone who offered guest gift suggestions! So many great possibilities I feel silly for not thinking of; sometimes I get stuck on one thing that won't work, and can't wrench my brain away to look beyond it to things that will.

In the end I went to Ten Thousand Villages (well, Dix Mille Villages) and got a couple of paperweights/worrystones, one engraved "Joy" and the other "Peace." They're pretty and friendly, not so expensive or so cheap as to be embarrassing for anyone, and fitting for a church-related function. Plus they won't be degraded by spending ten hours in the car before being presented! Yay.

And I'm supposed to be on the road in two minutes and I'm not ready yet aaaaaa. Happy weekend, all!
 
 
Sholio
19 October 2017 @ 09:22 pm
 
The Stranger Things phone game is too addictive for my own good. Send help.

... Well, it's semi-addictive. I tend to play in bursts of 30 minutes or so because the gameplay is slightly repetitive and I get tired of it quickly, but no more so than, say, the Lego games - I just get bored with punching things to collect stuff. I played for a couple hours today because after a day or two of beating my head against one of the puzzles, I managed to figure out the solution without having to look up any cheats, and this got me into a whole new dungeon and I didn't want to stop.

It's an adorable game, though. It's got retro 80s-style graphics and puzzles that are just hard enough to be challenging without being flat-out impossible. I've had to look up a cheat to get through one level so far, and I also wish I'd figured out in the beginning that it's very useful to do a bunch of the side quests before you try to fight through too many of the dungeons because you level up on health and carry slots, so it makes the dungeons slightly easier and less frustrating when you aren't dying all the time.

I don't play very many games and I'm having a blast with this one, so take that for whatever it's worth.
 
 
 
 
esteefee
19 October 2017 @ 04:00 am
Fandom Loves Puerto Rico  
Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/2ySQN6r
Hey peeps:

I have signed up to be a creator for the Fandom Loves Puerto Rico auction. It’s a charity auction to benefit victims of the recent hurricane by donating directly to ConPRmetidos. The charity is a Puerto Rican-run organization and all the donations go directly to the victims in Puerto Rico. See the links for more information.

If you want to support the auction by bidding on fanfiction, go here. If you’re interested in a story from me in particular, here is my offering. You have until 6pm EST, Monday October 23rd to bid. ¡Buena suerte!

Tags:fandom loves puerto rico, fandom auction, hurricane relief, ptdw
 
 
bironic
18 October 2017 @ 08:20 pm
Current poll leader: What I have been up to  
Hi, friends. Thanks for voting in the poll! Indecisiveness combined with a general suspicion that everything I say and write these days is stupid banal can lead to extra-long periods of not posting.

I have been all right. Going to the gym 4+ days a week is not my natural inclination, and I still hurt in many places, but it is clear the activity is keeping my mood afloat, helping me sleep better and, yes, building strength and stamina. I took tonight off to browse the local library book sale -- $2 for Neil Clarke's Best Science Fiction of the Year vol. 1 and Whale Rider on DVD, yay -- and write a post.

My sister came to visit over Columbus Day/Indigenous Peoples Day weekend. (Wow, it looks even worse to put those side by side than to use one alone. Wish we could just say Indigenous Peoples Day now, but it hasn't permeated the culture yet.) We went to a book event featuring chef Jacques Pépin, daughter Claudine and granddaughter Shorey. Having grown up watching Pépin, Julia Child and the Frugal Gourmet on PBS, it was a real treat -- especially since he came out twenty minutes early, plastic cup of wine in hand, to do photo ops with anyone who wanted.

The discussion itself was quite funny. Claudine, the moderator, got teased by her dad, but she dished it right back. "Never work with family," she quipped at one point. They told stories about things like how PBS timed its filmings so if Claudine wasn't a fast enough learner at rolling out dough or whatever, Jacques would elbow her out of the way and do it himself. Whereas when he partnered with Julia Child, she just told the film crew, "We're going to make this dish and we'll tell you when we're done," meaning some poor editor had to trim 110 minutes down to 20-something. Nor did they work from recipes, so airings were delayed because the producers had to reverse engineer them.

We also went to the county fair in the rain, figuring the crowds would thin out. Incorrect! Nonetheless, we enjoyed many animals, vegetables and minerals crafts. A pair of goats tried to eat our plastic ponchos, and once again the rabbit and cavy tent drove me to look into how feasible it would be to get a couple of guinea pigs to cuddle at home. (Space, climate control and frequency of cage cleaning & feeding are the main concerns, i.e. I could not be away for more than about a day without arranging for care. And I don't know if I trust my ability to maintain the energy levels to do what's needed. This was easier growing up when we had four family members to share tasks.) LOOK AT ITS LITTLE TRIBBLE TUFTS.

Work has been work-y. We were urged to apply for some awards in our field, which took up most of the last three days. I've won a few in this job, so I'm a bit hopeful. Otherwise just trying to keep my head down and enjoy the aspects of this career that I enjoy while our office's overall stress rises and morale dips. Pretty sure [coworker] is about to quit.

Good news is we still get financial support for professional development. Next week I'm flying to San Francisco for a conference. If any of you have food recommendations in the Union Square/SoMa area, especially for breakfast and lunch, share away. I'm already set on returning to a couple of takeout places in Chinatown for tasty tasty dim sum. Still dreaming of the shrimp and leek dumplings from my first visit there a year and a half ago.
 
 
 
 
sage
18 October 2017 @ 05:44 pm
What I'm Doing Wednesday  
books
I'm revisiting Yuletide source, taking a lot of notes, & contemplating my reading challenge parameters for next year. This year I've focused on women authors again, but lately I've been thinking about literary awards. Maybe next year I'll try doing the Pulitzer lists or something.

respiratory infection
Thanks for the good wishes re the cold. It's still lingering but I'm largely better. I'm still baffled that my body allowed a respiratory infection to happen at all. Maybe my allergic responses are relenting a little? *hopes*

dirt outside, inside )

neighbors squeaky wheels among so many other nice people )

healthcrap osteoarthritis + fibromyalgia )

Hope y'all are well! <3
 
 
bironic
18 October 2017 @ 01:23 pm
A post about posting  
As anticipated, gym requirements, travel and guest hosting have eaten into the (already diminished) time and energies that would normally go into writing more DW/LJ posts. But I've got some long plane trips coming up and am optimistic about contributing more.

Would you like to help me prioritize topics?

Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 42


You should post about:

View Answers

Recent read: All Systems Red - Martha Wells
16 (38.1%)

Recent read: Provenance - Ann Leckie
17 (40.5%)

Recent read: Stories of Your Life - Ted Chiang
14 (33.3%)

Recent read: Mash Up - ed. Gardner Dozois
4 (9.5%)

Recent read: From a Certain POV (Star Wars stories)
12 (28.6%)

TV: The Good Place
20 (47.6%)

TV: Star Trek: Discovery
18 (42.9%)

Vid notes for "When I Go"
13 (31.0%)

What I've been up to
26 (61.9%)

Thoughts on personal training and touch
19 (45.2%)

Thoughts on body image
21 (50.0%)



Or something else that you are welcome to suggest in comments. :)

ETA: Whoops, forgot "Movies: Blade Runner 2049." ETA 2: and Festivids. Note to self.
 
 
 
 
the_shoshanna
18 October 2017 @ 11:05 am
guest gift dilemma  
This weekend I'm going to a workshop in Ontario, and I'll be staying three nights in the home of someone who has offered to host a workshop attendee. I don't know this person/people -- I don't even have a name or address yet, and may not be told until I arrive on Friday afternoon. Not that a name or address would tell me anything except how much time to allot to get back and forth between bed and workshop...

I'd like to bring a guest gift, as a way of saying thank you, but I'm finding myself paralyzed. (Also short on time, but that's a separate issue.) The traditional gift is food, right? Something homemade, that carries the signification of "I put work into this" as well as the general good feeling associated with sharing food. Or wine, which lacks the homemade aspect but adds extra celebratoriness to the good feeling aspect.

But, knowing nothing about the person I might be staying with, I'm finding myself blocked with worry about what might be appropriate. Alcohol is problematic enough for enough people that I'd rather not bring it -- plus I should bring something I'd want to consume myself, in case they invite me to share, and I'd rather not drink while I'm there. But food is difficult too. Sweets/desserts are the usual gift, for the special-treat feeling, and I'd rather not eat sweets either, really, but I can cope. But what if they're gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, sugar-free, kosher, halal, allergic, diabetic? Is there a universally suitable food gift? Is it okay if I bring something they can't eat? What if I accidentally hit on something to which they're so allergic that just having it in the house is a problem? Aaaaaaaa.

I definitely don't feel that a gift is required, and given time restrictions, I may end up bringing nothing anyway. But I'd like to if I can -- if I can think of something!

Uh, any suggestions?
 
 
celli
17 October 2017 @ 05:34 pm
October blows  
#ptsd #sexualassault #Weinstein

cut for the above )
 
 
kass
17 October 2017 @ 05:45 pm
Ramblings on theology, Judaism, and S1 of The Good Place  
Herein: thoughts about theology, Judaism, and The Good Place.

CONTAINS SPOILERS FOR S1 -- if you haven't yet seen the whole season, skip this post and come back to it!

(I haven't yet seen any of S2, so please don't spoil me.)

What the actual fork. )
 
 
kass
17 October 2017 @ 02:40 pm
Gratitudes  
1. Cuddly kitten. When I work from home, he likes to hang out on my desk, or on my lap, or doze behind my computer, or pounce on sunbeams in my home office. ♥

2. It was cold this morning -- first frost tipping the grasses. So I am wearing leggings, a short denim skirt, a rose-colored tunic, and my knee-high deep-red Doc Marten boots. I am super goddamn cute today, y'all.

3. Ginger peach fizzy water. Om nom nom.

4. I have Yuletide canon in my possession, and hope to start reviewing it later today.

5. Exercising good self-care, I am closing FB again, and instead of reading things that make me sad and angry, I am going to pet my kitten.
 
 
Punk
17 October 2017 @ 11:24 am
ten awesome ladies  
I got tagged for a meme on Tumblr and I liked this list so much I'm just going to post it here: Ten of your favorite female characters in ten different fandoms.

1. Dana Scully - The X-Files
2. Chloe Sullivan - Smallville
3. Nyota Uhura - Star Trek
4. Leslie Knope - Parks & Recreation
5. Britta Perry - Community
6. Hermione Granger - Harry Potter
7. Samantha Carter - Stargate SG-1
8. Joan Watson - Elementary
9. Olivia Dunham - Fringe
10. Elise Wassermann - The Tunnel

Look at all those awesome ladies. I could have gone on for another ten. Like I didn't even mention Lana Kane from Archer, or Blue Sargent from The Raven Cycle, or Teyla or Lois Lane or Beverly Crusher or Princess Leia or Buffy or Pepper Potts or—

{also posted to Tumblr}
 
 
Sholio
17 October 2017 @ 07:14 am
Dark Matter 3x10  
I was reasonably okay with the show being cancelled until we started to get into the last few episodes of season three. And now it's killing me. AAAAAUUUUGHHH.

Spoilers are making unwise life choices like usual )