x_los: (Xena Could Be More Sconic)
""Whym Chow: Flame of Love"

... Katherine Harris Bradley (1846-1914) and Edith Emma Cooper
(1862-1913) who wrote collectively under the pseudonum of Michael
Field, from Rene Titaire the book passed to Francis J. Colline and
thence to the present owner. 'Whym Chow' was a celebration of their
much-loved dog, who died in 1906. Apart from each other Whym Chow was
their closest companion and such was the depth of their feeling for
him that after his death they underwent a religious crisis which led
to their conversion to Roman Catholicism."

Definitely my favorite story about a niece/aunt lesbian couple converting to Catholicism for their dead dog of the day. Maybe even the week!

Also, here is a quickie knitting pic spam of projects I've recently finished/am working on: )
x_los: (Alice)
tumblr_mcarc9dqLe1qjhgcxo1_500

More info on this gem here

Also:

_6957648

Is it me, or is this a High-Fashion Four Scarf?

Links! )
x_los: (Enterprise!Sherlock)
TRIGGER WARNING FOR SOME QUASI-ACADEMIC DISCUSSION OF SEXUAL ASSAULT.

WARNING: I finished this at 3am and I'm sure it's rambling and mad, but will edit later. When less... headed to bed.

**EDIT** Cleaned it up a little now, so all shitiness is my own.

On Horatio Hornblower (the Hornblower series), Jean Luc Picard (Star Trek), the Fifth Doctor (Doctor Who) and Kerr Avon (Blakes 7). )
x_los: (Russian Church)
Majority of Americans Delusional, Pretty Sure They’ll Never Die
The rise of Eastercon: the SF/fantasy convention with community spirit: Has this really risen? It's like... the longest running con in the world, or one of. Been around decades.
Sunday Sacrilege: Bad without god: meh. The Athiest movement's rhetoric bores me, sorry. Stuff I don't disagree with per se, but the formulation always seems achingly put-upon and kinda sophomoric.
What Twitter Means to Detroit
Intimate Mother-Son Bonds Aren’t Nearly as Creepy as Norman Bates Would Have You Believe
The War Against Youth
CrossFit Meets Inbound: Your Regimen for Rock Hard Marketing Metrics
Lexias: The Fact of a Fiction of a Fact: COULD NOT be more delighted that someone reviewed D'Agata's Lifespan of a Fact in a way that wasn't insultingly stupid.
Jim Henson’s Original Pitch for The Muppet Show Is a Thing of Beauty
Millionaire tax avoiders 'shock' chancellor
Riker Jazz
Ashley Judd Slaps Media in the Face for Speculation Over Her ‘Puffy’ Appearance
Daughters of Prometheus: Reviews of women's SF texts
America’s dream unravels
vow of omerta is a vow of silence, fun fact
ON THE FANFIC/PROFIC DIVIDE: boring and under-thought material poorly delivered. Niceish web design.
Tell Obama And Dodd: No Backroom Dealing, No New SOPA
A Radical Female Hero From Dystopia: Katniss
PR With Benefits: What 'Mad Men' Can Teach Us About Writing Press Releases
Firestation Book Swap in Windsor: There is also cake. Entry is £5 on the door or free if you bake a cake. That cake gets shared around. There is lots of it. Really, lots.
Paying Back Your Friends: A Conversation
How To Write The Great American Novel: Fun shit.
Autism Rises: More Children than Ever Have Autism, but Is the Increase Real?
ASCAP Claiming That Creative Commons Must Be Stopped; Apparently They Don't Actually Believe In Artist Freedom
Arizona Looks to Outlaw Internet Trolling
Canon and Sheep Shit: Why We Fight (I hate the Doctor Who canon like Dawkins hates God):

This is interesting for its points about canon formation, but beyond stupid for its lack of reckoning with canon and narrative causality, world-building and emotional effect. It conflates two *very different* premises, i.e. the open text about which the production team is reserved, not wanting to say anything too massively definitive for fear of restricting narrative possibility, and the text that has no past, and the monster that is the Text With No Past and No Future, like the temporal equivalent of Blanchot's horrifying dictatorial utterance which admits no dialogue or pause, which admits no past of future (NOW is what matters) and thus admits no meaning.

There is a SEVERE different between that understanding of canon and understanding the needs of a story must have their place in a weighing against the needs of curating and furthering a canon. 'Time is in flux', at its extremes, falls firmly into the Immanent Text. I was never bothered by infinite parallel universes as a concept, as Plinkett was re: Star Trek, but this collapses that into one universe, and for me represents not an avant-garde innovative challenge to traditional story-telling, but a hot mess wherein people who don't understand the tensions they're working with as writers prestige a series of darlings and kill everything else. See: ""The audience just hasn't seen the adventure when the Doctor goes back in time and changes that detail." - Steven Moffat, San Deigo, 2008."

Also quoting the lack-ass-luster "Time and Relative Dissertations in Suck" is never going to win friends and influence people. And Orman? REALLY? Orrrrrman?

A lot of the anti-canon rhetoric here seems twee, appropriating literary criticism's terms to play 'I'm more radical than thooooou, man.' Crunchier, too, no doubt.

Sure we in no way need stuff officially reconciled and a taxonomy of canonicity, but like consensus reality, we all adhere to loose definitions of forms/gradients of canonicity in order to speak of the texts we refer to and to contextualize work.

Also: "Something that matters to someone would now OFFICIALLY NOT COUNT." Oh who gives any fucks. If it matters, believe it. I mean I say all this as someone who hasn't watched the last Moffat series out of pure loathing/doesn't really think it counts.

"I Know I'm Lying.

Oh, alright then. There is a Doctor Who canon.

The Doctor defined it in The Gallifrey Chronicles...

"Sherlock Holmes solved the case before I could, as I recall."

"Sherlock Holmes is a fictional character," Trix pointed out.

The Doctor grinned. "My dear, one of the things you'll learn is that it's all real. Every word of every novel is real, every frame of every movie, every panel of every comic strip."

"But that's just not possible. I mean some books contradict other ones and -"

The Doctor was ignoring her." --if this isn't the most tweeeeeeeee, irksome, fanservicy bullshit ever these eyes have seen precious, I will eat my cat. Sorry, cat.

Everyone's a Destroyer of Worlds These Days: Great minds think alike, and so does Chris Chibnall, sometimes.

*

x_los: (Andrae?)
I'm pretty concerned that the following [livejournal.com profile] aralias podfics:

Wonderwall (30.27)
A List of the Lost (19.34)
When We Were Six (10.23)
Insensible (5.09)
Complications in the Plot (2.16)
Society Offenders (8.25)
Waterloo (8.57)

Come to Utopia (17.29)
Sartorial Differences (12.10)
San Francisco Dues (7.36)
Herding Cats: audio (4.18)
Time Lords Made Us Do It: audio (5.40)
THANKS TU!

THANKS TO TU FOR TAKING OUT MANY OF THEM!

may be lost, as they were only featured on megaupload and fileshare, and the later expired, and the former, well. I'm pretty sure she didn't have storage space for backups. Apparently I have Wonderwall, but it looks like ONLY part 1, not the full 30 min file, which I presume includes the sequel, "Masterplan"? Please let me or her know and send them along or something, if you have them?

It just enrages me that there's no redress for anyone at all affected? For people who put up things in good faith, and have now lost them/maybe don't have alternate copies? Because maybe fanfic's in a shady place, but it's not for profit--and I am willing to bet that a TON of podfic got killed, and can't ever be re-accessed, b/c it's by people who didn't have room for the files on their computers, or who have left fandom and can't be reached.
x_los: (OMG)
* http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Armillary_sphere PRETTY!!

* http://bookshelfporn.com/ House decorating! ideas! pretty!

* LULZ!!

"Intended to be the launch of a series which would involve Julius Caesar, Marco Polo and cavemen (sound familiar?) the audios were rejected for a slot on BBC Radio:

Martin Esslin, head of sound drama, wrote in a memo: “As a typical commercial production for unsophisticated listeners in Australia or even some parts of the United States, it stands up quite well. As a piece of science fiction, however, it strikes me as extremely feeble.”"

http://www.kasterborous.com/2012/01/another-uncovered-oddity/

* Also, should you ever want to fix crusty old paint brushes (I've only done house paint on various types, but I think it should work in most everything), I find it works well to try these instructions http://www.videojug.com/film/how-to-revive-old-paintbrushes-with-vinegar, then rinse them under hot water, soap and scrub them, then use a wire brush.

HALP

Jan. 2nd, 2012 04:35 am
x_los: (Andrae?)
You don't happen to know any American-accented folk who want to be in a v. funny Doctor Who radio/audio play about crazed football cultists attempting to summon the Jayhawk to vanquish the rest of the conference/possibly the world, do you? Or a variety of other such plays? Our series is having slight casting issues (esp. as regards finding anyone w/ a penis) (Though really not to the extent I might have expected, given that it's a huge complex project and people in fandom are not necessarily ALL also drama geeks.). But also: where are all the frigging Americans? I asked someone to write a whole ep set in the midwest on the premise that fandom was swimming with Americans and casting would a cinch, but while Brits are willing to audition in droves, I'm left shaking down everyone back home who just *might* know ballsy drama types.

So, if you're a man or a woman, or know a man or a woman (and not *just* ones with US-accents), feel encouraged to contact us via http://radio-sonic.livejournal.com/735.html for auditions, and/or http://radio-sonic.livejournal.com/443.html here for remaining production positions. It'd be BRILLIANT if you knew anyone! The main thing here http://radio-sonic.livejournal.com/profile also links to our twitter and tumblr accounts, should people need more general information and want it in a non-lj form.
x_los: (TARDIS)
Had a pretty good day out w/ Katy, after a rough start. Got woken up after little sleep at 8:30 by hungry/thirsty cat who'd consumed his foodstuffs (and, I suspect, was also just bored/lonely), never really got back to sleep despite trying for several hours.

Katy and I have two anniversaries due to differing opinions as to what marks the official beginning of going out, and this one, Hers, thus my gifts, is split into spending today together out doing fun stuff and then going for Japanese some other evening (since she had to record a Shalka read-through tonight). We began by visiting a Christmas Market at The Water Poet in Spitalfields (something of a fail as there were few merchants and Katy didn't really want to watch the free Christmas films, be bought food, or stick around for the caroling later on (I'd sort of banked on her wanting to do these, as they're Her Sort of Thing). Then we dodged disaster by going to Portabello Market, which, over-populated and over-popular though it is, was v. nice, with a lot of Christmas greenery vendors with actual boughs of holly (NOT IN A SONG! LEGIT-ASS BOUGHS OF HOLLY!!) and mistletoe (I SHIT YOU NOT!). Katy was not nearly as shocked/interested as I was. I mean I'd seen these things like, once. In sad little dry bunches, not in riotous profusion. My mom bought boughs of greenery some years, but like, that was just some fir-strands w/ pine-cones stuck in. And I liked that too! But this was cooler.

Also there were some nice pop-up shops, some decent vendors, and I successfully remembered/spotted... I think it was Lefton? anyway, some mid-century floral cat figurine of a sort that is sometimes valuable and which Katy rather likes. She suspected this particular one of being v. new, though (and thus worth bupkis), and also it lacked an intelligent/curious expression, and I suspected our cat could try to fuck or kill it, either resulting in the loss of a porcelain figurine potentially worth thousands. Needless to say we did not get Sasa a new 'friend.' Still, I'm happy to have remembered it from a conversation last Autumn in Edinburgh.

Some interesting walking around and looking at stuff and buying people presents and NOT buying an AMAZING fuzzy wolf-hat with connected paw-gloves (which Katy may deeply regret some day, I feel), and then we started back. I felt it'd been a nice date thing. Then I had to use the bathroom at McDonalds before we caught the bus. I got stuck behind a looooong queue, and, I eventually realized, specifically behind some clueless tourists who had no idea they were IN said queue, much less holding it up. Eventually bypassed them, after having been queue-jumped by half the known female bathroom-needing world, only for a McDonalds employee to ROAR IN shrieking 'this toilet is broken!!' and slamming the door in my face. Whatever was broken she fixed, and then in the same unfortunately URGENT poor English she demanded I go in and use the thing RIGHT NOW!! I did so, and not fifteen seconds had I been in before an old angry and pretty drunk homeless woman started banging on the door, cursing, saying she was 'about to fucking bust'again and again. So I had to finish as quickly as possible and stumble out still trying to pull up my layers of tights (it was nasty and cold today). I washed my hands veeeery quickly because said woman didn't see a need to close the door as she did her biz. Magical. I fucking hate tourist!London sometimes. Nothing was the speicifically poor homeless woman, the situationally-stupid tourists, or the harried employee's fault, but I felt incredibly frustrated.

Then we got on the bus an hour and 40 min before we HAD to be home (for a 40 min max ride), and due to the police cracking down and arresting a ton of protesters outside parliament (Londoners of African descent who were suggesting, with strongly worded signs and other WMDs, that perhaps it wasn't cool for the UK and associated governments to continue supporting a hideously oppressive, rape-happy and illegitimate regime because they thought said regime could get them a good deal on cheapo laptop components--so obviously people who needed arrested en masse, and violently too!), we were stuck in a traffic jam about 40 min. We got home like 15 min late.

Pretty much pretending the day ended riiiight before I went into McDonalds. Anyway, then Katy did her readthrough, and I made chorizo chicken with potatoes, did loads of laundry, put away dishes, entertained the cat so it didn't yowl much/audibly during the recording, etc. Also watched a chunk of "A Damsel in Distress" while doing this, because the BBC iPlayer almost always has a classic film on dock, and I like to watch them while doing chores so I feel less like I've missed out on an entire era of largely decent-to-excellent film-making (well, at least that's what's come down to me--there very probably were clunkers aplenty, as ever, now mercifully lost to time). Aired out the rooms, which smelled of cat. This necessitated chasing Sasa out of them, opening the windows, hoping no one came in to steal shit for an hour, shutting the door without letting him sneak back in, and putting anti-Sasa notices on all the doors. He sulked in the hall way, pissed at my effrontery. Literally, he did a number on his litter box. His rage!!!waste is prodigious, and fearful to behold. Did a veeeery little Shalka stuff, and talked to flatmate Kasia about Christmas plans.

I need to type up my to-do list for Kasia, who seemed to think I'd be making a few things, and she'd make a few things, and we'd muddle through--she's welcome to contribute anything she likes, but I have a full big ass menu planned out which I'm comfy cooking, and I don't want to be rude, but altering it to do less, when I've so carefully planned that, seems annoying--I'll try to be very out of the kitchen on the Eve and the Day, due to pre-prep, but I'm pretty ready to roll here. Also have to type this up so Katy's mom can do some things, which is both nice and a bit annoying, as I've pretty much spent a ton of time figuring out how to manage this, and well-intentioned offers of help may well throw off my carefully timing, budget and ingredients plans. Also I specifically asked if she wanted anything special, or to make anything at home or at ours, because I didn't want her to feel that her decision to come here meant me taking over or undermined her/striped her of agency/ruined her Christmas, and she said no, so I went with that? Idk.

I'm not good at delegation, but esp. not re: cooking. I know how to get a lot done myself, but not how to relinquish control over steps or whole processes, or how to share space and resources seamlessly. I think maybe I used to be better at that as a kid, but I haven't really had to share kitchen duties for a long time, and the freedom's made me snotty about it. It's a bad trait, but when I'm working I mostly want people who aren't people I specifically REALLY know how to work with, like Katy, to fuck off and stop watching me chop vegetables and remarking on the speed. (Re: that, It's a bit silly to say 'gosh, you're sooooo faaaaast' (a la the other day) when I know my knife-technique is juvenile. I was just pathetic at this in basic high-school culinary arts chef-training, and my dicing's never been sufficiently speedy or uniform, and the mince knife technique, sort of a swivel hand gesture? fanning the knife around VERY QUICKLY rather than lifting and chopping?, is just beyond my skill. I cringe whenever anything asks for minced garlic. I can't even keep the French terms straight. It's this huge, fundamental technical skill that marks an important distinction in the highly sexually segregated world of 'chefs' and 'cooks', and I just do. not. have. it.)

So yeah: maybe typing up the list and displaying it will sort of nicely tell Kasia that while she's welcome to also do stuff, this is the stuff I will be doing, and emailing it to Katy's mom with some nice indicators of thing she could helpfully prep at home and finish here, or make at home and heat here, or make here, time/space/logistics permitting, would be okay. I'm just eager not to insult anyone/ruin anyone's holiday, nervous about doing Christmas at my house/with my food (never done that before), and anxious to please gf and gay!in-laws.

Also I helped edit Mez's uni!personal statement and feel v. virtuous/proud of her.

Apparently Joy of Cooking's 'lowfat' gingerbread men cannot be trusted, as I suspected. Low-fat is the devil's recipe designation, second only to 'atkins/south-beach friendly' in its foul degradation.* Also that's weird b/c I typically trust Joy of Cooking with my life. Also I need to make their cranberry relish soon, having discovered it freezes well. And the chicken broth and lard too. AND SOME BLOODY CHRISTMAS CRAFTS THAT ARE CLASSY AND ATTRACTIVE AND CHEAP. Anyone know any? :/ May have to hunt Tumblr. Ew. Tumblr.

So, gingerbread:

May try this: http://simplyrecipes.com/recipes/gingerbread_man_cookies/ without pepper, b/c wtf, pepper?
or http://www.taste.com.au/recipes/9761/gingerbread+men#null , but the lack of molasses concerns me.

These: http://simplyrecipes.com/recipes/sugar_cookies/ may well be the antidote to the oddly thin, too-formal sugar cookies I produced in Batch 1. Think I'll try the first.

Hrm, Groupon. This accredited TEFL course for 49 pounds might not be too bad. Idk what that regularly costs, though. All I know is I could use sweet sweet tutoring/teaching monies... Will check it out.

* Speaking of, have you seen Morgana and Brax in 'look, I need to eat to live like everyone, okay?' Please view this trailer for "A Princess for Christmas." And laugh. Until you cry.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V0b8t6qXm0w

Buttle hard, Brax.
x_los: (Kermit/Piggy OTP)
A profile of my favorite hs teacher that talks a bit about his pedagogy: http://archive.columbiatribune.com/2007/sep/20070927feat002.asp

An interesting interview with Naomi Alderman about her new Doctor Who book and Jewishness in Who: http://forward.com/articles/146323/

http://writtenkitten.net/ : it rewards you for writing with kittens! The concept is profound.

10 Relationship Words That Aren't Translatable Into English: http://bigthink.com/ideas/41152?page=1

http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/hot-artichoke-and-spinach-dip-ii/detail.aspx dip I may make Tuesday when Ian and Davida come over, before dinner

http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/trioofwelshlambwitht_92149 : including the confit lamb I'll make tomorrow and a good way to use remaining kale
x_los: (TARDIS)
* http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2009/apr/09/ethical-living?intcmp=239 This sort of proves to me that the English middle class has no concept of frugality, *really*. Yammering about crust sandwiches aside, it's a bit pitiful how he doesn't precisely know how to make money stretch, and that he has no notion of the irony of making dinner with something like pine-nuts from his well-stocked pantry during this experiment. I mean he's a bit aware of the issues of having a pantry, and of his partner buying groceries, but the SUPER EXPENSIVE PINE NUT thing just woooshes past him.

* First Listen: Kate Bush, '50 Words For Snow': http://www.npr.org/2011/11/13/142133269/first-listen-kate-bush-50-words-for-snow?ps=mh_frhdl1

**AVAILABLE ONLY FOR A SHORT TIME, CHECK OUT QUICKLY IF YOU CARE**

* Piece on relative/subjective time: http://www.npr.org/blogs/13.7/2011/11/08/142118441/is-time-an-illusion-from-the-buddha-to-brian-greene

* Mez's tumblr is always v. pretty: http://littlemoonlet.tumblr.com/

* Please enjoy the ridiculous late 90s synth metal piece of shit that is the new 8th Doctor theme:



Kind of embarrassed for them right now. It's the new "Adventure Is My Name."

* Will only have a feeling about the Who movie if and when it's actually done, with a firm 'coming out' date. Finding it increasingly hard to care about it in wake of Moffat. A retcon's a bit dumb, and an attempt to follow the New canon's a bit dumb--ultimately I don't think this canon's very filmic, esp. not the sort of film they seem to want to make. Whatever, no one's world's been ruined by the Cushing movies or the TVM. I don't want it because I don't think it's a sound idea, but if that sort of logic meant anything, the last two seasons of sad wtfery wouldn't have been made. Maybe there'd be more people in fandom, idk. I don't really want to *become* part of a uber-fandom, tbh. A bit more activity, sure.
x_los: (Default)
Just registered to go to a SUPER EXCITING ACADEMIC CONFERENCE with Paul Cornell!! EEEEEEE PAUL CORNELL OMG OMG--sorry, sorry, I just registered for this. PLEASE LET THERE STILL BE SPOTS OPEN, I LOVE HIM. By which I mean to say mature, not-squeaky things indicative of an admiration for his talent, wit and probity. (http://genrefictionsymposium.co.uk/index.html)

http://tywkiwdbi.blogspot.com/2011/09/alfred-hitchcock-distinguishes-mystery.html : Hitchcock talking about the difference between Mystery and Suspense, how they work, and why suspense is in his opinion superior. Moffat, please watch. :(

http://mina-de-malfois.livejournal.com/ : The Mina de Malfois series starts as an absolutely hilarious modern femme!Jeeves (Arc) and Wooster (Mina) wherein Bertie writes fic and Jeeves is an archivist, and has laugh-out-loud amazing lines and a pretty pleasing strong sense of Mina/Arc femme slash:

"The PB/J shippers, or ‘Sammiches’ as they liked to call themselves,
saw the eventual union of PrincessB and Jab as an example of the
purity of love, the value of friendship, the dignity of the working class,
the need to resist base physical lust, and a bunch of other high-flown
ideals I’d been unable to follow. They were a cheery, in-joke-prone,
kindly lot, strewing their every message with smiley-faces and *hugs*,
which made it all the more unnerving when you caught them calling 22
their opponents a bunch of jackbooted perverts who should have been
aborted directly after conception. Watching the Sammiches turn on
their foes was like reaching the end of the rainbow and finding a pot of
broken glass and infectious syringes."


Re: a character playing a ghost:

"‘I can’t hire her. I mean, would you want to hang around Sanguinity
with a lunatic?’ I went on.
‘Whither thou goest,’ she typed. A chilling phrase, but she’d spelt
‘ghost’ wrong, though I tactfully refrained from pointing this out. ""

I feel it kind of looses its way as it goes on, becoming more about the game-world, the wider cast, and a perplexing and diffuse array of romantic relationships and plot threads that don't really go anywhere. I feel like the collapse into I AM NOW A STORY ABOUT THE GAMEWORLD thing has happened to something I've read before, or a few things, though I can't pin down with what. Interestingly the story falls apart a *bit* like Boy Meets Boy did. At two points I've had eye-narrowing moments when a character said something weird and stupid about The Nature Of Authorial Intent. I'm not finished yet, just midway through the third 'book', but while I feel the latter two lack some of the strength of the first, they're still v. decent.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_Daly : a somewhat batty (issues re: transpeople and 'female supremacy') but v. interesting feminist theorist Tweedy mentioned that I didn't know

http://www.trickster.org/symposium/symp186.htm : an article on power issues involved in BNFdom, from an interesting archive of such articles

http://boticca.com/jewelry/ : a cool jewelry site, with a REALLY wide range of sorts of jewelry, that Katy sent me

Stuff I am listening to atm:







x_los: (Four by Toulouse-Lautrec)
Hilarious moment in the kitchen just now re: Phillipa and the Mugster, Katy's mug with Ainley!Master pointing at you, sneering, as though he wants to recruit you for a very dodgy army.

Phillipa, as if it's troubled her for some time: Who is that?

Me, a bit embarrassed/evasive: A reoccurring character in a camp science fiction show in the 80's.

Phillipa: Is he a bad character? He looks like one. What's his name?

Me: Er, yes. Bit difficult to miss, really. And 'the Master', or 'Antony Ainley', I guess. (brief further explanation of New Who, Old Who, Burninated Eps, Ability to Catch On To Old or New Series)

Phillipa: He looks like this one member of ________ (sorry, people speak French and my mind just goes 'bwuh?'), a French death metal band, that plays the cello.

Me: ...that's probably fitting.

Phillipa: No, you don't understand, I want to MARRY that cellist. O_O

Me: Um, well, I know his name's silly, but maybe we should watch some classic who?

Phillipa: ...actually I think 'the Master' is a cool name *demonstrative evil squiggly finger gesture*, so yes, let's watch.

So that is a Future Plan.
x_los: (TARDIS)
I like feminist pop-culture blog Tiger Beatdown and all, but I'm getting really bored of their Rory-loathing. Granted I haven't watched this series out of sheer broken-hearted hate passing into numbness, but y'know, that's not Rory's fault. I don't feel he spent last series Oppressing the Wimenz simply by wanting his partner to respect their relationship--if Amy didn't want what he wanted, she could have (respectfully) left? Tsundere Princess is hardly powerless. And *sure* in that case he'd have been sad, and she'd have felt guilty, but it still would have ended. That's how relationships work.

Links!

* Mirepoix, which I want to try making/using since we have all the ingredients--any tips/recipes/suggestions? I know VERY little about French food/technique, and have only vague memories of learning about this and Trinity during hs cooking classes. I was not as neat a dicer as my friend Meghan Vohs--something that haunts me to this day. O_O

http://www.frenchentree.com/france-food-cuisine/DisplayArticle.asp?ID=32224

Seriously her knife technique is fucking fierce.

* An EXCELLENT and inspirational album of messy, delicious Food To Eat Over The Kitchen Sink (Why would you do that and risk loosing anything though? My god people, over a plate!):

http://www.chow.com/galleries/178/food-to-eat-over-the-kitchen-sink/3202/banana-and-fromage-blanc-grilled-cheese

* An interesting, articulate fat activism blog [livejournal.com profile] mezzopianoforte linked me to the other day:

http://randomlancila.tumblr.com/page/6

* Another such a blog which THAT blog linked me to, because this is an interesting SJ field I am not sufficiently up on/should be more educated about:

http://danceswithfat.wordpress.com/
x_los: (The Books One)
I wanted to decoupage our downstairs bathroom in MAPS!!, which I went all the way to Dagenham/BACK IN FUCKING TIME to the 1980s to get, but they turned out to be a bit crap. Le sigh. Can still use them for art projects/to line drawers and cupboards in interesting fashion. If you're in the UK and want some, I now have TONS. So Katy wants to decoupage our downstairs bathroom in an old falling apart Hornblower book, now, which I initially resisted because I get Too Jewish about book destruction, for reals. Also that bathroom already lacks light, and too much black ink+black floor=we stay in there too long-->we become cave trolls? But I am not insensible to the attractiveness of this: http://www.cutoutandkeep.net/projects/decoupaged_wall

Also we painted our Cath Kidston!living room white (replacing Nicotine Snot Cream), and then we accidentally painted our upstairs bathroom police-box blue. With lacquer red wood and accents, and a good deal of white, true, but omg, how did we not fucking see it? We were just like 'la di dah, this blue looks really comforting for some reason, laaaaaa...' I blame the TARDIS bar in Brooklyn's Who!toilet.

Thus this conversation:

me: Baby, you know Minard? http://cartographia.wordpress.com/category/charles-joseph-minard/

Katy: i did not, but yes - sure

me: if we do the hornblower bathroom, we should frame the really famous diagram of Napoleon's defeat
http://www.edwardtufte.com/tufte/posters
which would be funny
because it's two kinds of wordy graphic art about Napoleon's defeat IN ONE TOILET!!
NO ONE WILL CONTEST OUR NERD CRED THEN!!!
also the upstairs is france/red white and blue
and the bathrooms are competing for your patronage
but the England bathroom is just /better/
metatoilets

Katy: i thought we could have a framed 'pull to open' sign upstairs actually

me: !!
I love it?

theladyofconte: ha

But should it be inside against the walls or ON THE DOOR?! Decisions!!
x_los: (TARDIS)
Tired of being treated like a child, an idiot, or a traitor for not liking Day of the Moon/S6/Moffat Who and feeling like The Only One/A Newb/A Bad Person? Tired of being patronized, told Moffat Era is 'classic-influenced' in a way you can't hope to grasp, that the Doctor has 'never been a pacifist' (as Moffat tweeted, annoyed at being questioned),* and that the Epic Poetry of Moffat Era is just beyond you, as if you're not an informed and competent reader of texts? Me. fucking. too.

YANA, guys. Have some excellent links on why recent developments in the Whoniverse are problematic:

Bagheera has a startlingly accurate and affecting post on why DotM is her least favorite New Who episode.

"Does this guy share a single moral principle with the Doctor? He seems callous and arrogant, with no respect for life except the people he chooses to associate with. And the effect he has on people around him is almost opposite to what the Doctor ought to do. The Doctor encourages people to question authority, to be better and more independent and confident than they were. He makes timid people braver, and violent people kinder. Eleven makes people dependent on him (River, Amy), tells them to shut up and do as he says, makes them fanatics (River's trust in him re: jumping off buildings is majorly SCARY), makes them doubt themselves (Rory) and tells them which aliens to shoot (and no: he wasn't bluffing. River shot dozens of them.) And we're not even shown how he does this (which would at least be entertaining in an evil way) but simply have to accept that somehow he does."

Full discussion here: http://bagheera-san.livejournal.com/183979.html#cutid1

Aralias's review is comprehensive and considered. It's a strong analytic juxtaposition of the demands of the writing and the demands of the classic series canon, and how this episode fails to meet them. http://aralias.livejournal.com/586233.html#cutid1

This guy is on lj as well as his own blog, and did a good 'What Was Wrong with the Christmas Special' review. His commentary is usually structural and articulate: http://ed-rex.com/reviews/television/day_of_the_impossible_moffat

Alex is the best thinker on Seven-era I know, and also the biggest fan of it. She's normally relatively quiet, but here she takes apart the 'but Seven committed genocide!' comparisons in detail, effectively pin-pointing exactly why attempts to justify Eleven's behavior on those grounds are unworkable and unsatisfying. http://alex-e-smith.livejournal.com/38957.html#cutid1

Oxidized-moron has an amusing, sharp critique of the Impossible Astronaut: http://oxydised-moron.livejournal.com/19205.html#cutid1

Who-anon, in its typical withering eloquence, linked to this post with something like 'OMG WHY SO MUCH BUTTHURT FORM THE SAD TEN FANS EUGH'. This is someone's personal lj, it's cogent, the commenters (all two pages of them) have some points and do not focus on comparisons against a rose-colored (aha), venerated RTD era. What sort of disagreement *would* Moffat Defenders find Appropriate?

"Was it really the only solution for Eleven like some out there are claiming? But trust some people in ~fandom~ to turn this around on Ten, because he was the one in the wrong even now dontchaknow?"--I feel like this commenter is right to suggest that people go 'oh but I didn't like when Ten was emo either' as a defense of Moffat era, or 'remember when Ten killed the Racnoss/Those Spider Things?!', which, again, wasn't treated (even by the relatively feeble, under-written TL! Victorious arc) as a Clever Joyful Good Thing? Why are we framing a discussion of how Eleven era works around the failings of Ten era? How is that helpful? None of these people fall back onto 'waaaah I just want Ten/Rose forererrrrrrrrrrr', which it the impression you'd get from the who_anon link.

Here's the full discussion: http://shinyopals.livejournal.com/383136.html

Tweedy on whether Eleven, for all his apparent and remarked-upon alien-ness, is now being written as Too Human in his actions: http://tweedymcgee.livejournal.com/18449.html?#cutid1

ALSO: Moffat is a sexist douche. It's documented up the wazoo. I'm linking this where I could *make a damn tumblr of stupid arrogant sexist shit he lets spill from his goddamn mouth like pearls of nutcaseness.* When we let that slide, we forget a fundamental issue with him as a thinker, and thus as a writer. Also we say it's 'not that big a deal', when it fucking is.

http://zesticola.tumblr.com/post/5008346745/theres-this-issue-youre-not-allowed-to-discuss Oh poor *baby*.

And lastly: I HERD U LEIKED NEIL GAIMAN.

I am not psyched about the Gaiman ep. Sorry, but I think you should read his frankly god-awful War Games essay (which I've talked about before, but it's been years, and it bears repeating) before you get your hopes up. I don't adore him normally, but the problems with his writing come to their worst expression in his thinking on this canon.

"In my head, William Hartnell was the Doctor, and so was Patrick Troughton. All the other Doctors were actors, although Jon Pertwee and Tom Baker were actors playing real Doctors. The rest of them, even Peter Cushing, were faking it.

In my head the Time Lords exist, and are unknowable - primal forces who cannot be named, only described: The Master, the Doctor, and so on. All depictions of the home of the Time Lords are, in my head, utterly non-canonical. The place in which they exist cannot be depicted because it is beyond imagining: a cold place that only exists in black and white.

It’s probably a good thing that I’ve never actually got my hands on the Doctor. I would have unhappened so much."

http://journal.neilgaiman.com/2007/05/nature-of-infection.html

Neil, my friend, it probably. fucking. was. Unfortunately that's no longer the case. SEVEN-ERA 'MORE THAN A TIME LORD' ARCHETYPAL GODLIKE BEEEEEEEEEINGZ, GUYS!! Brb, voming forever.


* It's not simply the Doctor's willingness to use violence that causes 'the genocide problem' in Day of the Moon, and a list of Times The Doctor Has Killed People to support Day of the Moon could not be more beside the point or show a poorer understanding of the ways in which the writing is flawed. What's objectionable is that episode's poor development and lack of the nuances and context that have informed the Doctor's previous responses to violence.
x_los: (TARDIS)
"The world is vastly counted in favour of men at every level - except if you live in a civilised country and you’re sort of educated and middle-class, because then you’re almost certainly junior in your relationship and in a state of permanent, crippled apology. Your preferences are routinely mocked. There’s a huge, unfortunate lack of respect for anything male."

GUYS SOMETIMES IT'S HARD TO BE STEVEN MOFFAT. SOMETIMES IT'S *SO HARD.*

http://zesticola.tumblr.com/post/5008346745/theres-this-issue-youre-not-allowed-to-discuss

hat tip to Tu for the lulz.
x_los: (TARDIS)
Hat tip to Rachel for this article:


http://geekfeminism.org/2010/10/05/connecting-with-female-characters-in-geek-television/

This is a well-written article, but I have problems with it because it trivializes and fails to engage with legitimate complaints about these characters--i.e. you CAN legitimately find a female character poorly written, over-powered or problematically inconsistent in her characterization and thus uninteresting/irritating. And /at times--though not always/ I happen to find the examples pulled, Gwen (who I love, largely on the basis of S2 and CoE) and River (who I think is poorly conceived and executed) prime examples of poor writing. Tossing women who don't like female characters onto the Bad Feminist pile is not productive or fair, and certainly doesn't produce good critical understanding. It's not like a male character is never poorly written and thus unlikable for the same reasons. The problem's with consistently poorer or less-interesting writing of female characters than their male counterparts on shows as much as it is with biased misogynist reception.

A dichotomy that would ask you to chose between supporting feminism and a relentless demand for quality in art is a false dichotomy: these imperatives should not be privileged above each other, and /are not in competition/.

Picking some obviously silly 'these women fail to live up to my aesthetic standards' comments up for the aether isn't good enough. Neither is 'But these women (here Gwen and River) are /just like/ Jack and the Doctor, respectively, and you never find that problematic, except THESE ARE WOMEN!!' Well, I often find those particular characters unevenly written and problematic, but also, for the sake of establishing these parallels too much context is given up. Among other, possibly Bad Feminist reasons, people resent Gwen for screwing around on her clueless fiance who do not resent Jack for potentially screwing around on his not-committed-or-declared-exclusive-or-ltr boyfriend who's made rather aware of Jack's proclivity for non-monogamy. That seems... very different, and understandable? People resent River for smugging it up a la the Doctor, and because her Mysterious Past, Hitherto Unheard of Levels of High Ability For a Non-(Insert Alien/Magical Creature Here) and Connection to the Doctor seem like cliches of high-fantasy writing (and borrowed from timely successful work (Time Traveler's Wife) or re-used Moffat cliches (the Girl in the Fireplace's Suddenly Important Love Interest Without A Development Arc)) from a tell-not-show character who enters the scene proclaiming her personal importance to both the protagonist and the over-arching narrative in a way that seems unearned?

We accept a lot more from the Doctor not exclusively because we presume he has a legitimating alien phallus somewhere about his person, but because his character and his abilities are not automatic, and have been the work of decades of narrative-building (compare One's abilities to Eleven's)? And I /still/ deeply suspect New Who's smug neo-Cartmell-Master-Plan 'Doctor as More Than A Time Lord/God Figure' shit. I think it reaches for archetypes at the expense of characters in a social world.

And while I /know/ the Doctor as a character, over a long period of development, in his silliness and vulnerability and mistakes, as well as I know him in his bombastic success, all I know about River (even now, after six episodes--I knew dearly departed Donna /well/ after six episodes) is that she is Mysterious and Kicks Ass. I cite this http://www.overthinkingit.com/2008/08/18/why-strong-female-characters-are-bad-for-women/ re: why a Strong!FEMALE!Character is not a strong character, female.

The writer of the article says "Guys, this thread is not the place for “I dislike Gwen! Let me ‘splain why!” or “I dislike River, how dare you call me a sexist!” types of comments. If you want to justify your dislike of these (or other female) characters, you have the whole internet to do it in. If your reasons for disliking these characters are completely different than what I talked about, then I’m not necessarily talking about you! If you don’t like the shows at all, I’m still not talking about you! Which means that you are being off-topic. Any comments that are mainly or solely “But I hate River! The explanation! I will gives it!” will not be approved any more.

To head off the “you just don’t want me to disagree!” arguments, let me point out: my argument is that the specific reasons given by the majority of fans for hating these characters are misogynistic. You can disagree with that! But saying “I hate Gwen!” is not actually disagreeing with my point, since my argument is not that Gwen is super awesome."


Which seems... totally beside the point? Because saying that the reasons women claim they don't like female characters are at heart sad cover-ups/rationales for their tragic internalized sexism and then denying/shutting-down discussion of the ways it's more complicated than that because it's not 'on topic' is more than controlling the discussion flow, its delegitimizing anyone who disagrees with the article's core premise. And women silencing women being bad was... what she wanted to talk about, I thought.
x_los: (TARDIS)
Man, I really wanted Big Bang, Blink, Time Crash and Logopolis/Time Monster to be smooshed into two lazy and unlikable shorts redolent of the few stale, over-used plot developments that characterize everything you've ever written! Thanks, Steven Moffat! Wowzers!
x_los: (Spock Tires Of Your Bullshit.)
I am VERY TIRED. Still drained from the latest bout of illness, and not a little exhausted by my Pre-Guest Cleaning (girlfriend comes Sunday--I'm excited, a touch nervous, and frantically tidying things) and running around tonight, despite my ingestion of a 1) Java Monster, and 2) Caramel Mocha Chiller (tm, Sonic). Neither of which made me feel as if I had live hamsters who'd just been bitten by cocaine-addicted scorpions surging through my very veins, despite the adverts' implications and my own over-enthusiastic expectations. Energy drinks of the world: where are my hamsters with second hand substance abuse issues? Where?

ON TO THE SCI-FI RAMBLING.

Like everyone else in the world, the popular resurgence of Star Trek has drawn me back to my stream of origin a sci-fi salmon. In the past weeks I've managed to re-watch nearly all of ST:TOS.

It always bothers me that Other Planets have monolithic cultures, as if cultural globalization has just swallowed them as part of their evolutionary process. Initially, I assume a vastly alien culture would appear uniform by virtue of the great differences that must exist between products of entirely disparate cultural origins. But as we get to know a species over centuries, shouldn't some distinction become apparent between, say, Vulcans from different hemispheres? Betazoids of different religions?

Re: Vulcans, it sometimes seems as if we only ever come in contact with members of the highest class. In the original series we see Spock's marriage: hyper-traditional and redolent of privilege. In the later-made and earlier-set Enterprise we see another much like it.

Star Trek is big on advanced societies being inherently classless. Whether or not this is naive, and if wealth might be supplanted as the basis of such a hierarchical system by privilege based on traditional prerogatives, what might be seen as a meritocracy, or a valuation based on an individual or family's perceived contribution to society, can be laid aside for now. Suffice it to say that kibbutzniks traditionally wield a numerically disproportionate political power in the Israeli Knesset, as do Ashkenazim in Israeli politics, without the benefit of necessarily being more monied--so there's certainly precedent.

The Western perception of Japan is that everyone knows how to run a tea ceremony and cavorts with geishas. These are historically very upper-class activities, built around having the leisure time necessary to develop and devote to them. Vulcan attitudes and mental disciplines (meditation, philosophical education, occasional retreats into monasticism), at least according to human historical tradition, smack of the money necessary to devote to a fetishization of an ironically complicated scholasticism-cum-Buddhist-esque simplicity.

Also, there could be a wicked underlying complacency to stoicism--its easier to be untroubled, to consider emotional outbursts gauche, if you're entitled enough to make most worry unnecessary?

As this culture progressed, did identifiable upper class behaviors become the signifiers of Vulcan-ness? There's something disquieting about the loss of those other classes' cultural identities, even as the loss of ethnic identities is a sad end to what we have to assume was initially a plurality of experiences. The ways and views of the middle and lower classes seem to have been lost, either as these classes gained the resources that enabled mobility and imitative behavior (or is this romanticizing their difficulties?), in some reaction to contact with the larger galaxy, or by virtue of a wholesale trend towards homoginization.

This always bothers me about Doctor Who, as well, re: the 'Gallifreyans' vs. 'Time Lords' nomenclature thing. I have to say I much prefer it if the appellation 'Time Lord' is synonymous with 'Gallifreyan,' rather than handed out only to Academy graduates, nobles, or the somehow /specially/ intellectually gifted in Gallifreyan society. I think I find the Doctor running away from a species-wide elitism more resonant? I want 'Come now, we're both Time Lords' to be a call to something more fundamental and significant than 'help a brother out, we both went to Eton.' My general squick's more complicated than that, but I'm not sure how to parse and articulate it. I just wholesale /prefer/ 'Time Lord' simply meaning Gallifreyan.

Spock's class status is revealed rather slowly--we learn that he's from a /very/ well-placed family only in second season's Amok Time when Kirk and McCoy notice that a reactionary Vulcan politician of interplanetary renown is officiating at Spock's wedding, and comment on it. Spock's in no position at that point to observe or react to their surprise. Later we meet a prominent Vulcan ambassador, and Kirk is surprised that the ambassador and his human wife are Spock's parents. It's interesting that Spock's human mother and Nurse Chapel both imply that for all the touted superiority of their emotional stoicism, Vulcans have some expectations of submissiveness from their wives that humans typically find sexist or strange. This isn't mentioned again in later encounters with the species, perhaps thought better of by later writers.

From a social sciences perspective, the dragging out the 'tortured half-breed' trope with Spock's a bit of a backward-looking step from a show that so wanted to be progressive.

As a parting non sequitur, I'm so, so tired of chasing bats out of the kitchen. This is like the fourth this summer? We have to be /doing/ something different to attract them, or their diminishing habitat is pushing them further into the city than I've ever seen. But screw environmental worries: damn bats! All up in my kitchen! Confounding the Schnoodle! ...I'm sorry, I have to go now and found a prog rock group, 'Confounding the Schnoodle.' Excuse me. I'll be back later. With Grammies.

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