oursin: The stylised map of the London Underground, overwritten with Tired of London? Tired of Life! (Tired of London? Tired of Life!)
([personal profile] oursin Sep. 25th, 2017 01:56 pm)

Dept of, did you do any research?

That Uber vs TfL thing, with TfL refusing to renew their license - okay, I do not use Uber (I am probably not their target market) and everything I hear about it makes me deeply suspicious - but when I read various articles claiming that London black cab drivers are the trad white working class, I wonder how often, if ever, any of these people have ridden in a black cab. Because in my limited and anecdotal experience, finding a Trad London Cabbie who will give you his Salty Cockney Opinions whether you want him to or not, is not the default at all.

This article about Some Artist's exhibition on what he calls 'pseudo-Georgian architecture' in the UK and dates to the 1970s.

Marvel at a London Waitrose – “the pearl of Holloway Road”, according to Bronstein’s caption – with a cupola-crowned tower floating above its entrance. That oddly proportioned line of columns, running above the shopfront windows, suggest the architect once glimpsed a photograph of Vicenza, but not for long enough.
I know that Waitrose and shop there regularly and I am old enough to remember when it was Jones Brothers, by that time part of the John Lewis Partnership, but dating from an era when suburban department stores were built as retail palaces - as far as I can see, dates back to the 1890s.

***

Dept of, is that really the solution? PETA co-founder says we should stop wearing wool. I cannot help feeling that if there is no longer any economic reason for rearing, even if 'sheep are so gentle, they’re so dear!' they are likely to vanish from the face of the earth except in zoos (to which I imagine PETA are also opposed). Might not doing something about introducing legislation for more humane shearing practices be a better use of their time and energies?

marthawells: (Stargate)
([personal profile] marthawells Sep. 25th, 2017 07:47 am)
This weekend we ended up going to my husband's 40th high school reunion. It was a lot of driving and sitting in traffic to get there and get back (perpetual high way construction taking four lane highways down to one lane, trying to exit onto another highway just as a large sports event was ending, etc) but we had a good time. (Also we went to a party out in the country where our GPS tried to direct us into an open field.) But everybody ended up having fun. At one point we went into Denton with friends and went to Recycled Books which is a bookstore so huge I think it hurt my brain. We also got to see my family including my two year old grand-nephew, and that was a lot of fun.

I posted a story to the Raksura Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/user?u=2458567 and that was about all the work I did this weekend besides answering email.
supergee: (bug)
([personal profile] supergee Sep. 25th, 2017 06:53 am)
Alex Acks on how to win an online argument (fsvo win)

Thanx to File 770
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morgan_dhu: (Default)
([personal profile] morgan_dhu Sep. 25th, 2017 06:34 am)


The ongoing health crises of the past two years seem to have had serious negative consequences for my ability to read in a sustained manner, but recently I've been having more success in managing to read.

I have liked to read multiple books at the same time - this allows me to pick the subject that most suits my mood when my brain goes "I want to read sonething now, please."


Current books in progress:
The New Jim Crow, by Michelle Alexander
Strange Matings: Science Fiction, Feminism, African American Voices, and Octavia E. Butler, edited by Rebecca J. Holden and Nisi Shawl
First of the Tudors, by Joanna Hickson, historical fiction about Jasper Tudor, uncle of Henry VII.

And I've just begun reading Adilifu Nama's Black Space: Imagining Race in Science Fiction Film, which looks to be very interesting. As the author describes his work:

"The present work examines the symbolic discourse and ideological messages encoded into black representation, including its structured absence, across a multitude of sf films as a symbolic dialogue with the multiple racial discourses and ideas surrounding black racial formation, past and present, that are circulating in American culture. Moreover, sf films of the 1950s to the current moment are discussed in this book with an eye toward drawing connections between sf cinema, black racial formation, and shifting race relations in America over the past fifty years. Too often the sf film genre is regarded as addressing only signature divisions in the genre: humans versus machines, old versus new, individual versus society, and nature versus the artificial. In this book, however, I place black racial formation at the center of these common dichotomies. As a result, a more complex and provocative picture emerges of how sf cinema, in imagining new worlds and addressing a broad range of social topics, has confronted and retreated from the color line, one of the most troubling and turbulent social issues present in American society."

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([personal profile] morgan_dhu Sep. 25th, 2017 06:30 am)


If by some strange chance any of the sff fans reading this do not know that Farah Mendlesohn has written a major critical work on Robert Heinlein's opus, and due to contract issues has decided to crowdfund its publication.... Well, now you know.

If you like Farah's work, if you like Heinlein's work, if you want to give me a super present by helping to enable the publication of this work that I desperately want to read, please consider supporting this crowdfunder.

https://unbound.com/books/robert-heinlein


supergee: (mourning)
([personal profile] supergee Sep. 25th, 2017 06:22 am)
Kit Reed has been publishing excellent novels and short stories (sf, mimetic, and, as she would say, transgenre) for almost 60 years. We enjoyed her company at many ICFAs and Readercons. RIP.
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Maurice took a detour on his way to Mamzelle Bridgette’s in order to visit the curio shop that dealt in jade bracelets, so that he might commission one suitable to MacDonald’s purpose. He therefore arrived a little after his usual hour to discover that he had an unexpected visitor.

Why, Uncle Hector! I hope there is no trouble in the family?

No, all well, Euphemia sent you a few almond cakes – and she says these are just for you, sent a further parcel for the workroom.

'Tis very good of her. Tea?

Thank you, I will.

While the tea was coming, Maurice waved Hector into the more comfortable chair and sat down himself, mentioning that he had Lady Trembourne coming shortly.

Very early in the day for that lady!

Maurice gave a small grim smile. Does she desire to be dressed by me, at such short notice, she must take what time I may spare. Hector returned his smile. But was there some particular matter you desired to open to me?

Why, Sophy was thinking that though Sam wishes keep Thomasina at school a little longer, since they are in no necessity to send her into service or put her to an apprenticeship –

Maurice, whose investments included a share in Sam Jupp’s exceedingly profitable livery stables and carriage-hire business, nodded.

- when there was that notion that 'twould provide an excuse for visiting here that she desired find her a place, put the idea into her head that though she would not wish Thomasina to earn her living by her needle –

'Tis indeed a hard life –

- you might bring her on into the business more generally. Is a good clever girl, excellent fine reports from the schoolmistresses, an eye for fashion, already goes quiz her aunt Tibby on matters of style.

Maurice pondered a little. Indeed he had wondered about matters of succession. Why, I daresay I shall see somewhat of her during the family yuletide gatherings, and mayhap Sophy might bring her along some day.

Hector nodded and said he would convey this invitation to Sophy. Also, Her Ladyship becomes most concerned over the plight of needlewomen –

I have heard somewhat of that from Lady Pockinford –

- and I confide she would be well-advized to convoke with you upon the practicalities of any philanthropic enterprize she purposes.

Well, now she may come visit me for fittings again I daresay we shall have opportunity to speak upon the business.

Hector cleared his throat, sat back in his chair, crossed one leg over the other. She also, he said at length, takes some concern over Mr MacDonald.

Maurice raised his eyebrows.

She thinks it entire beneficial that he has become a member of this club of yours, where he may be with fellows of like kind. But she comes to some apprehension that has already been beguiled by some fellow, and hopes that 'tis some fellow that will not do him hurt, and wonders had you observed anything that might illuminate the question.

(Well, that answered the question in his mind of whether MacDonald went home and quite immediate recounted what he had been about to Lady Bexbury.)

Why, said Maurice with a little considering frown, indeed he becomes quite the favourite and there are fellows make up to him, but I cannot think of any one in particular that he shows favour to himself –

Only, Hector went on, she takes the thought that those years of mutual devotion that he had with the late Viscount, can have been little preparation for any matters of fickleness and deceit -

(Really, Maurice thought, it was entire unreasonable to feel quite sick with jealousy over a dead man.)

Well, he said, I will look out for any signs, and hoist storm warnings if necessary.

Her Ladyship would be most displeased did he come to any harm. And I hope you demonstrate proper gratitude for the services he has done you.

Quite entirely: but I am sensible that there is little that I can offer such a fellow as any kind of recompense. Sure I have made contributions to Lady Bexbury’s philanthropies –

Hector nodded. But you have ladies coming, I must be away.

Maurice found himself left in some confusion. Was this a very indirect warning? But he had no time to linger brooding upon the matter, for, although he did not expect the Countess of Trembourne to arrive precise to the minute, nonetheless he confided that she would arrive before an entire hour had elapsed. He tidied up the fitting-room, laid out some fashion plates and some samples of stuffs, and minded to put the almond cakes out of sight. There were clients he would have been happy to share this treat with, but she was not among them.

In due course Lady Trembourne, followed by Lady Sarah Channery, was ushered in to the fitting-room. They were very much of that same high-bred English lady look: that fine straight fair hair that must have been an immense trial to any that had to dress it; the pale aristocratic features; the tall and slender, even skinny, figure. Lady Trembourne’s face was marked with its habitual expression of discontent. Lady Sarah, however, looked less than usual like a nervous mouse keeping company with a cat: perchance having a lover had conveyed her some confidence in herself.

They sat down and tea was brought and Lady Trembourne produced some fashion-plates that had given her a notion of how she should like her gowns made. Maurice was most greatly tempted to accede to her demands, for he could see that the styles chosen would not set her off to any advantage, but he had the reputation of Mamzelle Bridgette to maintain and that would do it no favours, so he began the delicate task of persuading her into somewhat that would do credit to all parties.

By this time this had been decided, and measurements taken, and Lady Sarah’s requirements also taken into consideration, several hours had passed. But at last Lady Trembourne declared that she had another engagement and swept out. Lady Sarah lingered, looked nervously towards the door, and asked in low and tremulous tones whether the establishment had some discreet chamber?

Maurice conceded that it did, and the terms upon which a lady might avail herself of it.

Lady Sarah was, of course, considerably younger than Sir Stockwell, and indeed than Lady Trembourne: but she was still of an age that was not suited by an air as of a naughty schoolgirl that has slyly deceived the mistress.

After she had gone – looking remarkable complacent for one that had but lately had remuneration demanded of her in return for silence – Maurice sighed, smoothed back his hair, and decided that he would go lunch at the club.

(Of course he had not the slightest expectation that he might encounter MacDonald there.)

At such a time of day there were few enough present, but Sir Stockwell had managed to escape his duties, whatever they were, at the Admiralty. Allard! he lowered his voice. Any news?

Maurice lowered his own voice. Has asked me about the discreet chamber, but indeed I do not know if that might be for a particular purpose, or whether 'tis just to be informed in anticipation. (He did not somehow feel inclined to reveal that yes, Lady Sarah had a lover. Since it was some friend of MacDonald, let him be the one to disclose it.)

Well, let me know do you discover more.

He moved away.

As Maurice deliberated between the cold beef and the ham, up came Tom Tressillian, looking extreme self-conscious. Maurice! Pray, assure me that I have not offended you –

Offended me?

Why, I know that you and Linsleigh have been friends this long time, and he was paying me some attention t’other e’en at the viewing of his painting, and you left most precipitate –

La, my dear Tom, you are entire welcome to enjoy Basil’s favours, sure we have not sworn some oath such as he was telling us at such great length did the members of the Theban Band: and I daresay 'twill come to some exceeding pretty picture - perchance all in black, gazing upon a skull?

O, providing you do not mind - !

Not in the least. But, my dear, figure to yourself my astonishment to see young Orlando Richardson in the company – does he follow in his great-uncle’s footsteps?

Tressillian sighed. Alas, I confide not, except that shows already a pretty talent for comedy.

Alas. For though 'tis by no means a pretty fellow, there is a certain, as they say, piquancy, to his looks, that I daresay his uncle had before he took to drink.

james_davis_nicoll: (Default)
([personal profile] james_davis_nicoll Sep. 24th, 2017 11:59 pm)
I Am A: Chaotic Good Human Paladin/Sorcerer (4th/3rd Level)


Ability Scores:

Strength-13

Dexterity-8

Constitution-16

Intelligence-10

Wisdom-8

Charisma-7


Alignment:
Chaotic Good A chaotic good character acts as his conscience directs him with little regard for what others expect of him. He makes his own way, but he's kind and benevolent. He believes in goodness and right but has little use for laws and regulations. He hates it when people try to intimidate others and tell them what to do. He follows his own moral compass, which, although good, may not agree with that of society. Chaotic good is the best alignment you can be because it combines a good heart with a free spirit. However, chaotic good can be a dangerous alignment when it disrupts the order of society and punishes those who do well for themselves.


Race:
Humans are the most adaptable of the common races. Short generations and a penchant for migration and conquest have made them physically diverse as well. Humans are often unorthodox in their dress, sporting unusual hairstyles, fanciful clothes, tattoos, and the like.


Primary Class:
Paladins take their adventures seriously, and even a mundane mission is, in the heart of the paladin, a personal test an opportunity to demonstrate bravery, to learn tactics, and to find ways to do good. Divine power protects these warriors of virtue, warding off harm, protecting from disease, healing, and guarding against fear. The paladin can also direct this power to help others, healing wounds or curing diseases, and also use it to destroy evil. Experienced paladins can smite evil foes and turn away undead. A paladin's Wisdom score should be high, as this determines the maximum spell level that they can cast. Many of the paladin's special abilities also benefit from a high Charisma score.


Secondary Class:
Sorcerers are arcane spellcasters who manipulate magic energy with imagination and talent rather than studious discipline. They have no books, no mentors, no theories just raw power that they direct at will. Sorcerers know fewer spells than wizards do and acquire them more slowly, but they can cast individual spells more often and have no need to prepare their incantations ahead of time. Also unlike wizards, sorcerers cannot specialize in a school of magic. Since sorcerers gain their powers without undergoing the years of rigorous study that wizards go through, they have more time to learn fighting skills and are proficient with simple weapons. Charisma is very important for sorcerers; the higher their value in this ability, the higher the spell level they can cast.


Find out What Kind of Dungeons and Dragons Character Would You Be?, courtesy of Easydamus (e-mail)

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([personal profile] sartorias Sep. 24th, 2017 04:57 pm)
I've been watching this really clever sitcom while doing the exercise bike. Sadly, I only have a couple of episodes to go for the first season. Why couldn't it be longer?

It is so rare that I like a sitcom, but this one is smart and funny, and the actors terrific.
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([personal profile] james_davis_nicoll Sep. 24th, 2017 04:57 pm)
Taken from a couple of angles over about a minute.

Read more... )
As one does, I keep a log of my visits.

The cats expressed their appreciation for my record-keeping.

Read more... )
oursin: Brush the Wandering Hedgehog by the fire (Default)
([personal profile] oursin Sep. 24th, 2017 09:39 pm)

As our flight was not until after lunch, this morning after we'd packed and put our luggage in store we went to the Hipolit House: more historical domestic interiors, plus exhibition on the actress Antonina Hoffman and on theatre/acting more generally in C19th. Rather interesting.

Of the journey, not a great deal to be said except for the enormous distances walked within airports.

Anyway, ome agen.

elainegrey: Inspired by Grypping/gripping beast styles from Nordic cultures (Default)
([personal profile] elainegrey Sep. 24th, 2017 03:51 pm)
Wait, what, hurricane Lee??

Dinky Hurricane Lee not a threat to land

Dear Dr Jeff Masters, should you really taunt a storm like that? Especially if it's come back from being dismissed as "done"?

Also, Tropical Storm Pilar? Where did N go? (Ah, whew, that's an East Pacific storm.)

And Jose, still?? "After 70 advisories, enough is enough," said the NWS on Friday. Indeed.
elainegrey: Inspired by Grypping/gripping beast styles from Nordic cultures (Default)
([personal profile] elainegrey Sep. 24th, 2017 03:24 pm)
Hi incomplete sentence, i see you now.

I've no idea what i was surprised about yesterday.

It looks like autumn. I went out for maybe 15 minutes. It's not hot, but i am dripping wet. Ah, i've calibrated. Apparently it is, "85°, Feels like 86°" outside. I was mowing with the reel mower, so that's some exertion.

I called my Grandmámá this morning, after examining some of my "oughts" in therapy this past Wednesday. I ought to call her, i tell myself, because i want her to know i care about her. But 9 am -- which is apparently the good time to call her -- comes and goes with my attention on other things. Just before Hurricane Irma, i decided Sunday mornings would be good. It's not a work day, but since i'm headed off to Meeting it's not as fluid and Christine-focussed as Saturdays.

So i called, and it *is* a good time to talk to her, because we actually talked for almost a half hour. She shared stories she's shared before, but new ones too.

I was talking with "oughts" with my therapist because I want to thrive. My therapist asked, have i ever ... thriven?

(thrives, thriving; past throve |THrōv| or thrived; past participle thriven |ˈTHrivən| or thrived) from Old Norse thrífask, reflexive of thrífa ‘grasp, get hold of.’

We talked a little about college, when "adulting" was novel and i was successful at it. Now i reflect on bad habits that could be graduating from college, i ache when i see Christine trampled by elephants again. [1] ... and since i am committing to examining my thoughts for distorted thinking -- even if i have procrastination habits that are decades old, i have also gone through periods of success and vibrant creativity. It will happen again.

Leaving my therapist, i thought about Laughingrat and her frustrations with cognitive therapy. There is a frame where "I'm thinking wrong" is just one more thing wrong with yourself, and it's so easy to stand in that relationship with the distorted thinking practice. I don't think i could successfully do this work if it wasn't for some of the far more somatic work i did some years back. I'm learned then how to have compassion for myself in a way that's hard to describe. In a way, i think Noelle coached me in a mindfulness practice that never mentioned the mind and focused on my body. This practice with disordered thinking will, i hope, be another mindfulness practice, this time focusing on my mind.

[1] For new readers, to give my spouse Christine some privacy and to yet talk about my experience of her experience, i refer to what's going on with her as "elephants," as in "the elephant in the room."
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([personal profile] laundrybaskets posting in [community profile] exercise_every_day Sep. 24th, 2017 09:34 am)
You know the drill. If you exercised today, please comment and inspire the rest of us to get moving.

Have a great day!
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