I object strenuously to the fact that it made me cry that much in spite of the baffling artistic licence taken with evolution and wish to lodge a complaint
Nipples don't exist! But that's okay because the C4 photosynthetic pathway does, paving the way for remarkably resilient leaf loincloths
This concludes your complementary review of The Good Dinosaur, now showing in cinemas near you!
Is anyone else playing?
Okay, will cop to having read Very Little Trollope (possibly only the one in my VictLit undergrad course?) - for years I said I was saving him for my old age: I still am...
But, really, I suspect that this may be a Very Hatchards List, Hatchards being the Posh People's Bookshop on Piccadilly, possibly to books what Fortnum and Mason is to food.
Other thoughts on literary judgements and gender, in the light of a couple of widely circulated articles on the subject:
On Pandering: How to Write like a Man
If you enjoyed a good book and you're a woman, the critics think you're wrong
yr hedjog being someone who for years has read predominantly women writers (while I do not skorn utterly writers of the masculine persuasion, am v picky about them).
There is something there about the role of pleasure, and the idea not just of 'guilty pleasures' (kill the concept with fire) but pleasure itself being, if not entirely guilty, worth less than grimness and difficulty.
I cite my beloved GB Stern, who writes of books that provide an 'escape into happiness by the oldest swiftest route in the world, the story-book route', and comments that 'on these we usually keep a guilty silence unless confident of being among our fellow escapists', and praises 'the comfort and fun to be scattered by a small book about small people in small gatherings', concluding that 'there are other things to be done about the narrow earth than to bestride it'.
It would be wonderful to be able to write a novel that could stand alongside Middlemarch or South Riding, but if I could not aspire to those heights, what I should like to have written would be some work that may not be Big Literary Canonical Work but one that has gone on giving pleasure and being recommended between friends and rediscovered with cries of joy and appreciation.
Ok, it's 7500 words, which is half again as long as it was supposed to be, and it needs a ton of revision before I can even think about a beta-reader, but still! VICTORY!
That means I get to go to ChessieCon this weekend, too. Sometimes self-bribery works.
(Hopefully the other near-finished one will get done, and then in December I take a month for Yuletide, and I can worry about revisions in January...)
Also dinner yesterday was quite pleasant, and we discussed the fact that my cousin's mom really wants her to read Anne of Green Gables, but my cousin will only read books with dragons in them, so therefore someone needs to write a version of Anne of Green Gables were Anne is actually a dragon. (This seems entirely workable, given what I remember of Anne of Green Gables. And it's public domain...)
As regular readers might know, I've had a problem with clutter since, well, forever, and it's only been in recent years that I've started to really get on top of it (as opposed to keeping it kinda sorta under control.) I've been making good progress recently, and the book serves to give me a prod in the right direction.
This book isn't - for me at least - something to follow step by step. (When I got to the point of 'I have reduced my books to thirty' I snorted - 30 books in this household is a month's supply.) But a lot of the concepts in this book were helpful when looked at from a short distance.
( Thoughts and anecdotes and fewer socks )
Fortified with this, I am more positive towards the book as a whole. I have for years used the 'I use it, I need it, I love it' manta, which keeps the toilet brush, your bank statements, and that silly thing you picked up _there_ and which always makes you smile in your life. And I have moved from seeing things as possessions (think Scrooge McDuck or Smaug on their piles of gold) and treating them more as events: if you spend £10 on a cinema visit, it's spent. Whether you enjoyed it or not. You decide whether you want to see the film again or another film by that director, but the money is spent. This helps with the 'but I paid good money for it, i should keep it' guilt.
( The KonMari approach )
Born on this day in 1833 to Adolphus Hanover , Duke of Cambridge and Princess Augusta of Hesse-Kassel, Pricness Mary of Cambridge (my toy,wikipedia). Mother of Mary who married George V, also granddaughter of George III. Mary grew up in Hanover, where her father was viceroy for his brother who was King of bother the UK and Hanover; when Victoria came to the throne of the UK she didn't get Hanover (Salic law) but neither did Mary's father (it went to her Uncle who was older) and he returned to London with his family. Mary married late (she was considered unattractive and wasn't wealthy but was too important to marry just anyone) to the Duke of Teck (who was also not wealthy, and not very important, but was good enough for the Queen to allow it), they lived in London until they ran up debts they could not repay and ran off to the continent to avoid them (they did later return to London).
Well. That OTW Open Board meeting happened. And then things continued to happen.
Now that things have settled down just the tiniest bit (most likely because most of the US based people are in a food coma), I am with the people who think this clean slate is actually the best news for the org. I trust LO and Matty and I know they are already working hard to get everything lined up so they can start work as soon as they are inducted as Board.
In less exciting news, I've been watching Sense8 and then Jessica Jones to finish my knitting and start on my photo sorting. Different as they are, I like them both. (We're going to ignore Walter firing a rocket launcher less than 500m from the Federal Police Office building in Berlin. Or the fact that Sufentanil is a controlled drug basically everywhere and the level of lockup and protocol to sign that stuff out this means.)
I've also been sucked into Hamilton because of course I would.
Thanks to us being fully staffed vet-wise at work for the first time in five years or so, I was barely working at all in November. I am not used to this. It took me about two weeks to remember that I choose a job with 60+ hour weeks for a reason. I need the stress and pressure. Without it I actually get less done.
Oh well, from December on we're back to a more normal rota pattern, then I can be grumpy about too little sleep and/or time again.
We've reached the season where all my running trails are mud and ice again. This is not conductive to running at any reasonable pace, but then the weather itself is rarely inviting to go out on any business anyway. I try to keep up the running nonetheless. Next half marathon in March is the plan for now. We shall see.
And to finish this entry a picture, as proof that I am slowly sorting through my photos...
Pecan or pumpkin?
The stuff from the can is fine
Freshly made please
Change "whipped" to "ice" and I'll think about it
No thank you
I reject the false binary imposed upon me by the first question.
I have eaten too much pie
I would like some pie
If you recall one of my earliest blog friends off Livejournal, Darcy? I'm with her and her family in Los Angeles, and there's the whole nine yards of turkeys, pumpkin pies, and lined-up bottles of wine.
The last three pics on my Instagram provide you with some Let's Not Again Be Genocidal Turkey Day snapshots.
My foot, framed by my flowy black dress, as I walk through the sand.
( Walking around Costa Adeje )
And some photos from my phone. I ran every morning I was in Adeje. It was such a pleasure. There's wide stone promenade that winds for several kilometres along the waterfront with lots of places where you can dip down and run on the sand for a spell if you like.
Having time to myself is a rare and precious luxury. I reveled in being able to roll out of bed, put on my running gear and just go.
Came the dawn.
( Early morning running around Costa Adeje )
( A bit of R&R )
Me in my Rosetta mission t-shirt on my last morning in Tenerife, soaking up the sun.
Two different kinds of uncomfortable political conversations: the first exemplified by the fact that I have sworn to walk out of family dinner the minute someone endorses Donald Trump. (I don't *think* they will - we have enough different views that we're pretty skilled at being apolitical - but I'm not sitting through it or fighting them if it starts, so. If they just put on the football instead I'm going to be sitting in the corner reading Check Please! slash on my phone.)
The second exemplified by the fact that I put up a Books by Native American Authors display at the library for the end of this month. (It's getting way less checkouts than the "How To Bake Pies" one the other librarian put up, but thus is the way of things. It also contains literally every book by a Native American author
Anyway, in the spirit of the second, have some podcast recs:
I got onto otipêyimisiw-iskwêwak kihci-kîsikohk (Métis In Space) via a rec from sara, and it is now one of my favorite podcasts. Every other week two Métis women, Molly and Chelsea, plus the occasional special guest, tipsily dismember a SFnal movie, TV show, or video that features Indigenous people in it. Also they occasionally get confusing dispatches from their future selves who live in a spaceship above a decolonized North America. It's the kind of podcast I like best - the kind that feels like a couple of fans have just invited you into their living room to chat - and is really smart and really compassionate and really fun. Also if you like Canadian things it is possibly the most beautifully Canadian thing I have ever encountered.
I have made very few decisions regarding my Hugo nominations yet, but otipêyimisiw-iskwêwak kihci-kîsikohk is definitely going on there for fancast, and you all should try it so you can decide whether to nominate it too. To start I suggest the recent episode The Manitou, where they watch a terrible 70s horror movie that they end up being unexpectedly fond of. Or the slightly older episode Knights of Cydonia, which is a music video that easy to watch in advance if you want to know what they're talking about, and was also taped while one of them was literally in labor - they have to stop for contractions a few times - which makes it possibly the most hardcore podcast ever.
Another podcast I have recently started listening to is Archeological Fantasies, which I don't know that I wholeheartedly recommend: I listen to it because I will listen to well-informed people make fun of the Bimini Road and the Newark Holy Stones and their ilk for as long as you can let me, but the hosts do sometimes get on my nerves, often with that sort of unconsciously arrogant PhD-knows-best kind of elitism that makes you understand why people cling to their antiscience beliefs. But that said it's mostly good and they are trying to be fair spokespeople for science (I just have high standards for public skepticism) and if you, too, will happily listen to hours of intelligent people calling out Ancient Aliens as idiotic, it's fun.
But there was a recent episode that stepped away from their usual format, and that one I do recommend heartily. It's Dr. Fader telling the story of The Legend of the Lighthouse. The Lighthouse isn't an actual lighthouse; it's an oddly-named historical site where he's been working for decades. I won't go into detail about it because he tells the story really well and it was better unspoiled, but it was a lost town that had attached a beautiful legend about a mixed-race community in the early 19th century that turns out to almost entirely verifiably true, and the true story comes out better than the legend, and made me cry, and that kind of history needs to be better known. So you should listen to that episode.
My previous favourite episode was s3e1 (the one with the mugging and the worst threesome ever) but the second and third episodes of this series have topped that. It's the descent into awfulness that I like: each step down the slope is at least vaguely sensible.
Fargo is also proving to be excellent.
Took friend Janet to the doctors, and then to the pharmacy. While she was waiting for the pharmacist I went to supermarket to buy loorolls, and saw a woman buy a pint of milk and thirty packs of butter. I counted all the butter packs as they slid past the till and there were exactly thirty.
Thinking about Christmas presents and somehow got completely waylaid by wildlife posters online. Trying to work out who in my life would be thrilled to get a poster of British Bats. (This is while waiting for various things to install, restore, uninstall, reboot and generally fail to do what they should be doing.)
I'm going out tonight to have a drink with someone from my last job. I'm apprehensive about this; there will be awkward pause-filled conversation and fascinating facts about bats will not help.
I have realised that the strange and wacky calendar I got for my birthday last week is a calendar for the year 2015. I'm a little bemused.
I have decided that my strange dream from last night means "Posessions are meaningless. Life goes in a circle. You will fight and struggle and then fail to restore windows from the earlier backups."
I haven't done a lot of work today.
Born on this day in 1869 to King Edward VII of the United Kingdom and Alexandra of Denmark, Maud of Wales (my toy,wikipedia). Daughter of Edward VII. She married a Prince of Denmark, who later became King of Norway after Norway decided that it didn't want to be in a union with Denmark anymore and voted to make him King (he was the younger son of the Danish crown prince). This made her the first Queen of Norway since the 14th century who was not also Queen of Denmark or Sweden (because Norway didn't get to be independent all that often...).
2. Fresh flowers on the table. Just autumn-colored mums from the grocery store, but they brighten my day.
3. Having given both myself, and my son, a shiny gold manicure. My mother would plotz.
4. Coffee this morning.
5. Friends whom I love dearly. Including you.
For those who are in the US and celebrate Thanksgiving today, happy Thanksgiving. For everyone else, hey, I'm grateful for y'all every day anyway.
We had travelled to Mars (as people do) and then went exploring (as people do). While we were out someone (Martians?) had carefully stripped the space craft bare of all its contents and furnishings, so it was just an empty shell. Later we found all our possessions laid out in a very large circle.
Is this a message from my subconscious, the dream lord, the martians? And if so, what are they trying to tell me?
For the record, Dream Mars is flat barren heathland and doesn't look like the film at all at all.
What I'm currently thankful for is that the migraine I woke up with, which alas did not respond with the usual expedition to sumatriptan, now finally seems to have receded.
But the entire morning I did not feel in the least going out to collect a parcel from the sorting office, which closes at 12.30, sigh.
Okay, throughout the morning I was not entirely obliterated and able to do nothing but huddle in bed with a hot water bottle. But I still wasn't feeling like doing anything but reading.
Not entirely sure that the change of prophylactic treatment is working.