liv: cup of tea with text from HHGttG (teeeeea)
Because these are always fun, and because my quad keeps getting confused about the names of meals...

poll about eating habits and language )
liv: cup of tea with text from HHGttG (teeeeea)
A couple of good questions on my d-roll recently, so I am repeating them here in order to solicit more opinions. And because a nice discussion will distract me from doing all the pre-term admin I'm working on this week.

opinions welcome )

Breaking up

Feb. 4th, 2013 08:49 pm
liv: bacterial conjugation (attached)
A friend of a friend has started this business to market to er, support people going through relationship break-ups. I don't particularly endorse Valenswines; my connection to the people involved is rather indirect. TBH the website gives me a vibe of "you're doing femininity wrong! A real woman would buy our products", but hey, judge for yourself.

The reason I'm posting about them is that they made a cute lil survey about break-ups. Part of me misses the old days of LJ when people would pass round these sorts of surveys. Banal, perhaps, but people can answer inane questions interestingly. And as for me, I'm a complete sucker for filling in surveys!

break-ups and me )

And while I'm on the topic of random surveys, [personal profile] monanotlisa linked to which European country are you most suited to? The bad thing about it is that it appears to have been machine translated from Russian, but the good thing about it is that it's based on an actual piece of research into the typical attitudes held by people from different countries. It told me that I'm Norway, I think mainly because it doesn't really distinguish between "religious" and "Christian". (There are actually only a couple of thousand Jewish people in Norway, and there's a reason for this.)
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
This is based on several discussions I've taken part in recently, both on LJ and offline. My options are deliberately inadequate because I'm more interested in discussion in the comments than in the actual vote counts.

no, you don't get any nuance, pick one or the other )

PS I don't have time for nature versus nurture arguments; it's part of human biology that we are members of societies, so it's natural that we are subject to social pressure.

PPS There are various flavours of genderqueer and trans folk reading this journal, as well as people with a whole spectrum of opinions about feminism, so try not to be more offensive than you can help.
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
Some unanswered questions from conversations recently:

  1. Is there such a thing as a lesbian icon?

    There were a group of mostly straight or at least non-scene women out with a gay man, and we were trying to get him to explain the gay icon thing. Like, why are most gay icons straight women, such as Cher, Madonna, Judy Garland and so on, and not, you know, actual gay men? His theory was that a gay icon needs to be flamboyant and overtly sexual towards men, but preferably projecting a happy, confident image, as opposed to the angst and emo typical of the few male artists who actually talk directly about gay themes.

    Somebody asked, what about lesbians, are there any lesbian icons? I could only think of celebrities who are either well known to be lesbians such as Ellen de Generes, or actresses who are known for lesbian roles, such as Alyson Hannigan. But they are not really icons in quite the same way, I think. I did end up offering to make a playlist of lesbian themed music, though, so any suggestions welcome.

  2. How do they make holy water?

    This is from the picnic. Of course we all know that it requires a priest who has to bless the water. But how exactly does it work practically? Does the priest bless a large volume of water and then divide it up into lots of little bottles, each of which is holy? Can the holy water be diluted with normal water, and does that make the mixture holy or unholy? Or does the priest have to bless exactly this particular water in this particular vessel? Is there a maximum amount that the priest can bless at any one time? Does the holiness stick to the water forever, or does it have to be water that was blessed recently? Is it different for Catholics and Protestants?

    I hope these questions aren't irreverent; we really do want to know. But they might the kind of questions that only make sense in a conversation between Jews and geeks, and completely miss the point of how Christian theology works.

Why, yes, I am supposed to be working. I'm hoping that interesting speculation on these questions will provide a minor distraction, but not enough of one to keep me from getting any work done at all...

administrivia )
liv: oil painting of seated nude with her back to the viewer (body)
In a discussion in a locked post, someone mentioned those stupid "statistics" about how often people think about sex. Because I am incurably nosy (and also procrastinating), I decided to make a poll.

poll beneath )

As usual, feel free to argue with the poll, suggest options I've left out, clarify beyond the detail of the poll options, etc.
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
This is inspired by a discussion in a friends locked post. Please tick as many boxes as seem relevant, but make sure to answer only the question applicable to your gender.

If you don't define yourself as either "male" or "female", that's wonderful and liberated of you but there is no space for you in my poll. Answer in a comment if you like, and preferably don't hate me. The reason for this is that LJ polls have no direct way to link answers in two different categories, and for this particular poll I'm interested in the people who are still part of the binary gendered majority.

[Poll #846234]Oh yes, I am displacing from my own housework, why do you ask?
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
The last part of the introduction day I went to earlier in the week was taken up by an "intercultural communication workshop". That sort of thing can be quite fun, but I was there for useful practical information, and with my parents waiting for me I didn't stay for all of it. Besides, the communications guru who was leading the workshop really annoyed me; he was desperately camp, in a slightly upper-class English pretending to be Stephen Fry kind of way, and it just set my teeth on edge.

Anyway, he started off in the traditional way, presenting us with a series of statements and dividing us into buzz groups to discuss them. And I've decided to reproduce his triggers here, because I think they could provoke some interesting discussion. I've altered some of them slightly, partly so as not to plagiarize too much and partly because it became clear in the subsequent discussion that the guru's original phrasing was leading people to discuss things different from what he actually intended us to discuss. So I've tried to make things clearer.

The plan is that if everybody gets to discussing this, it will partly make up for the lack of content posted by me!

Some fun questions to think about )

By the way, when we did this exercise, my group consisted of a Japanese guy, a German, a Dutch guy, a Libyan, and me, the only girl in the group. Too small to be meaningful, of course. We got very organized about deciding the best way to represent everybody's opinion on each statement (we settled on including a voting tally rather than trying to come to a consensus), and generally got into the whole meta thing, in the way a bunch of geeks will. We were split 3:2 on a couple, but mostly we quite quickly came to a unanimous decision. Ironically, the one we had the hardest time settling on was whether compromise is better than confrontation!

The Japanese guy (who was, incidentally, rather distractingly good looking) did something that fitted right in with a remark the guru made in the followup session: apparently, in Japanese culture if someone asks for your opinion the polite thing to do is to think about it for a while. This made it quite hard to get him engaged in discussion when the other four of us were more inclined to jump right in with our opinions.
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
I'm having a bit of a discussion (in a locked post) about the connotations of the word girl. So I shall post a poll, because that's always fun. Feel free to expand or criticize or whatever in the comments!

[Poll #706016]
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
I'm not sure what inspired me to ask this question, but now it's come into my head I'm quite curious.

another of my language usage polls )

As usual, if you want to talk about the subject, comments are good. And yes, I was mean and used radios instead of ticky boxes. That's mainly because I get more comments that way, from people complaining that they don't like being forced to choose only one option!
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
Some conversations I've been having recently have led me to wonder what sort of connotations the term geek has. So of course I obviously had to make a completely unscientific LJ poll, which won't tell me the answer but might be interesting anyway.

clicky clicky )

If you don't like my options or have further comments, that's what the comments are for. I don't want a lot of interesting thoughts in the poll where I can't reply to them easily.
liv: oil painting of seated nude with her back to the viewer (body)
There's something I'm really curious about. Supposing you're in the situation of wanting a partner. How would you go about finding someone to date? Would you just hope someone comes along, or what? I particularly want to know about actual experiences: if you have ever deliberately gone looking for a partner in the past, how did you go about it, and what worked for you?

I ask because, well, I have never actively looked for a partner and I don't think I'm likely to; I prefer being single. When I have got into relationships, it's been something that "just happened" or was initiated by the other person. I can imagine what sort of steps I might take if I wanted to find someone. But I'm curious to know how this sort of thing works in reality. Also I have a few friends who are miserably single and I feel I can't give them any very useful advice, at least any that isn't entirely hypothetical.

Soundbite

Miscellaneous. Eclectic. Random. Perhaps markedly literate, or at least suffering from the compulsion to read any text that presents itself, including cereal boxes.

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