• Patty leaves for Cardiff in 8 days. Between now and then her parents are visiting, we need to try to see my parents, she has a friend we're supposed to do dinner with, and we want to go to a fancy dinner before she goes. It is a very busy time. Also, Patty just sent me email about cheese inspired by ziggurats.

  • In my exuberance about other issues, I have neglected to ask if any of you have any intel about the New York Musical Theater Festival. Which is to say, I can choose tickets to four shows, but don't know what to choose. Got anything?

  • Speaking of exuberance, man, New York is some serious gorgeous today.

  • I got my retconbook rewrite story, which I didn't read last night because I wasn't supposed to get it until today. So reading and excitement there. I need to finish mine for my recipient as well.

  • On the professional front, oh hey, I have a story due at the end of the month. I should get on that.

  • Also, I got notification today that I didn't get a grant I applied for to defray some of the costs of Bristol; oddly, I don't feel shattered (as I tend to do). It's a thing that has to do with any number of issues long before me and my scholarship. May every day be so mentally healthy.

  • Speaking of Bristol, I have not mentioned The Society of Friends of the Text in some time. But, we're trying to put new things in motion and there's some great new content on the site, so you might want to check that out.

  • Ever so tangentally related, death, death and more death will be back at Gally in 2011. Yay. Seriously, check out that AWESOME panel schedule. And it doesn't even include many truly awesome things that are to come.

  • Patty just forwarded me the greatest potential outlet for some personal essay about some of the work I've been doing EVER. I am writing a pitch TONIGHT. Wow.

  • Unsurprisingly, France has passed a law banning burquas and niqabs. Not cool, France.

  • The San Gennaro festival was a love of my childhood. It wasn't any less corrupt or crowded then, but it was less homogeneous and more authentically about being Italian-American in a way that remembered Italy and remembered when we weren't wanted here. It felt like, at seven, my culture. Anyway, I haven't gone for years, because I don't need the crowds or the booze or the crappy street food. But I may go to check out Torrisi Italian Specialties booth which plans to integrate Italian and Chinese specialties and techniques in a nod to the way Chinatown has merged into what was once Little Italy. I'm curious, although I doubt I'd be able to eat much, or even any, of it.

    I really loved Little Italy when I was a child. Read more... )

  • Someone needs to make a Torchwood vid to Come Sweet Death (ignore the random Dead Like Me vid, it was the only way to make you able to hear this song easily) that makes me laugh until I cry. The song popped up on my Last.fm in the week before CoE, and now is firmly embedded in my mind with everything that happened in the narrative and in the fandom in that chunk of time. When people talk about "I had to go to the bathroom at work to cry" -- hell, when I talk about it -- this is the song that's playing in my head.

  • Last night on Covert Affairs: Read more... )
  • sundries

    Sep. 8th, 2010 09:40 am
  • Really tired and still catching up on sleep from Dragon*Con. I remain impressed by Patty's comps diligence and know I babbled at her quite oddly when she came to bed last night and I was more or less asleep. Ah well. Only a few more days of this.

  • Meanwhile, I am trying to solve our cruise drama for April; it's a long story that I thought I had solved and then a sailing we want is sold out and the timing is complicated. So I suspect the next cruise will be 2012 for us, and that in April of 2011, we're either going to do one of the two domestic trips we've talked about or just choose an island and go there for a week. We loved Bonaire, and there are a few places we haven't been that we'll probably consider too. I dunno; if you have recommendations about islands, resorts and the like, please let us know since It's probably not the right time for us to go to Sydney (not the warmest for them), which is a shame, as I want a room in the Altamont right now.

  • In case you missed it last night, [livejournal.com profile] bifemmefatale's 16-year-old daughter has run away from home. If you're in the Illinois area and could keep an eye out that would be good. If you could also not be an asshole or a concern troll (i.e., telling her to go to one of the places it is suspected Morgan might be heading to in order to understand - right now the priority is finding an underage girl who may need help; the Internet can be a part of this. But Morgan is not the Internet's kid, and this sort of stuff is NOT helpful right now; useful advice from folks that work with runaways and street kids is a different matter).

  • [livejournal.com profile] rarelylynne is participating in the DeKalb County Wheel-a-Thon to raise money for disability services in her area. If you're interested in helping, you can visit her journal where she writes more about the event and her fundraising team, Team Caitlin (named after her daughter).

  • Hey, [livejournal.com profile] sihaya09 is facing some MASSIVE vet bills for a lovely cat that is having some hardcore neurological/spine issues. Luckily, [livejournal.com profile] sihaya09 is an AWESOME artist and runs a cool etsy shop. If you're looking for something for you or yours, you might wish to check out her wares.

  • Hero rats search out landmines in Africa. The rats are too light to trip the mines themselves, so only one has died in the field, and that was a result of a car crash.

  • Religious leaders of several faiths have gathered to condemn the sharp rise in religious intolerance directed at Muslims.

  • Iran has suspended the sentence of a woman slated to be executed by stoning for an adultery conviction.

  • Students protest the forced resignation of a lesbian dean at a Catholic college after she married her partner.

  • After the media apocalypse, stories survive as patchwork quilts. This is an amazing art exhibit. Quilts as storytelling mechanisms are nothing new; quilts as a future mechanism of telling our current stories when they are near lost, however, is an amazing idea.

    Said to [livejournal.com profile] tsarina at Dragon*Con: "You know, after Children of Earth happened I asked what it would take to remember Ianto for a thousand years, and you know, people wrote fic if they saw me say that or not, but that wasn't what I meant. No one got it. I meant, if this story means so much to us all, let's sit around and speculate on the process by which narrative becomes remembered outside of its pop-culture moment and, eventually, becomes myth. How do we make that story survive? How do we force those characters to keep their promises?"

    These quilts make me think of that discussion I never really got to have. Link via [livejournal.com profile] shadesong.

  • Last night on White Collar: Read more... )

  • Last night on Covert Affairs: Read more... )

  • Really, none of you wanted to talk about The Dark Crystal sequel with me? You all suck.
  • sundries

    Sep. 1st, 2010 09:41 am
  • Right about now Patty's beginning her comps. It may be a long week coming up for me, but it's a longer one coming up for her.

  • The temperature is also rapidly approaching 97 in New York City today. Between that and the impending hurricane business, not a lot of fun. Also, it really has been this bad: 2010 was New York's hottest summer on record.

  • LJ has implemented a new feature that allows you to cross-post both entries and comments to Facebook and Twitter. Anyone who has this feature enabled may cross-post comments they make to friendslocked entries to these services. While the cross-posted item does not show the original locked post, it does indicate the existence of content some people are not able to see, which is a privacy concern for many in and of itself. Additionally, depending on what someone says in that cross-posted comment there are additional issues.

    While I am perfectly aware (so don't start that argument with me) that privacy on the Internet and LJ is largely an illusion, people are entitled to that illusion. They are also entitled to being able to deactivate the use of such a tool that makes privacy violations seem easier and more appropriate in their own spaces.

    I made a locked post about this last night for a bunch of people to test the feature. Yes, it really works as I've described. Other than using that post to test this feature, DO NOT cross-post comments you make in my locked entries to other services using this feature (you own your own words, and cutting and pasting from a comment you make to me in a lock post that doesn't reveal the source or information I'm handling delicately is fine, but as I've seen noted elsewhere comments sure can reveal a lot about what someone is saying privately).

    If you want to complain to LJ about the lack of opt-out/opt-in in the implementation, use this handy post from [livejournal.com profile] news.

    I don't, btw, really have the time to go to war with LJ about this this week, but you should be aware.

  • On a related note, I see a lot of reaction to this situation being framed as "I don't want people in my real life to know about my LJ." I totally get what you are saying; many of us have separate identities on and off-line or multiple different communities. However, LJ isn't fake. These are real interactions with real people that you are having. You may value them less, and that's fine. But we're not constructs for you to bounce your actual existence off of. We're real too. Even here, typing. "Real" is an easy construction, I know, but it's also a sloppy one. Please think twice before using it.

  • France is having an amazing scandal involving the L'Oreal heiress and shady cash payments to scads of politicians.

  • The Swedish rape case against the Wikileaks founder is one big mess. I don't know, and have no way of knowing, the merits of the actual case, but the way Sweden is handling it is not helping anyone else figure it out either.

  • When a promotion seems like a demotion: life in the corps de ballet.

  • Teens charged with harassment at mosque, specifically they've been accused of "harassing members of a mosque by yelling obscenities and insults during evening prayers for Ramadan, sideswiping a worshiper with a vehicle and firing a shotgun outside."

  • Last night on White Collar: Read more... )

  • Last night on Covert Affairs: Read more... )
  • sundries

    Aug. 25th, 2010 09:48 am
  • Do you all remember Tiny Kitten that showed up in our hallway some time ago? Well, Tiny Kitten is now Teenage Kitten and Patty encountered him again yesterday for the first time in months and couldn't figure out where he belonged, but then he disappeared. But, that said, there's a litter box up on the roof-access floor, and it's one thing if he's an outdoor cat, but he can't be hallway cat! So if we see him again and there are still no obvious caretakers, we're taking him in, separating him from the other cats, putting up signs and bringing him to the vet and fostering if need be. We are concerned!

  • I'm really, really hoping that because Patty is More Organized Than Me, I did not just accidentally throw out my passport this morning. It's going to be okay.

  • Patty is probably buying her ticket to Cardiff today. Does anyone have any thoughts on traveling cheaply in Europe (in case we're able to meet up on the weekends while I'm in Switzerland before I get to go over there for a bit)? I found a bunch of $30 airfares yesterday, that then had another $250 in taxes. Also, Easy Jet? Wonderful or Satan-spawn?

  • Don't be shocked, at least some some 9/11 families support Park 51. (Also, Dear CNN, it is not a mosque and it is not at Ground Zero).

  • Can we talk about the "Ground Zero" nomenclature for a moment? I hate it. I have hated it since it happened. I am a child of the cold war. A nuclear bomb was not dropped there. The site of the horror is not the center of terrorism, and hello, horrible shit happened in DC and Pennsylvania too. "Ground Zero" has been, since the beginning, a useful term to frame, not just what happened at the WTC as an act or war, but to frame this idea of ourselves ("The West") being at war with Islam (which we shouldn't be, and is what the terrorists are trying, successfully apparently, to trick us into), and that's not a type of useful I can support.

  • Are you fucking kidding me? The NYC MTA wants to raise our monthly unlimited transit cars from $89 to $130. Getting to work shouldn't be a luxury. Here's a petition, although I have no idea if that's useful. But my outrage needs a link.

  • More schoolgirls poisoned in Afghanistan.

  • Philadelphia wants its bloggers who are running ads on their sites to buy a business license. The licenses cost more than the profits most people make on their blogs, and are in addition to business taxes.

  • Speaking of, sort of: [livejournal.com profile] alchemia is in financial need because of medical and other issues and has set up a webpage with advertising and hoping page views can help raise some of the necessary funds (an extra $1,200 a month has just been added to the budget). I'll be frank and say this before a bunch of you say it to me in comments: I'm skeptical about this plan, not because it's a scam (it's not a scam, it doesn't hurt you in any way), but because asking people for page views can cause problem with some ad services ToS, and because it's hard to earn big money with online advertising as a small content provider (trust me, I know this personally). However, it doesn't cost you anything to try to help. Information on why help/how you can help/what the plan is.

  • Huge WSJ article on gluten-free. This is a useful article if you want a basic understanding of my daily concerns, the complexity of which even those who are trying to help often don't understand. Also, while I am a Yankees fan, not a Mets fan, I will now make a point of going to a Mets game as they have gluten-free hotdogs and beer available. Thank you, Mets!

  • In Pakistan, 800,000 people are now only accessible by air. [livejournal.com profile] help_pakistan.

  • The hidden gay cadets of West Point. It's not just Katherine Miller.

  • The dark history of immigrant labor and America's rails at Duffy's Cut.

  • The struggle for women's suffrage (granted 90 years ago Thursday in the US) mirrors national divides on today's issues.

  • The New York City Council is set to vote on an ordinance requiring clerks to inform gay couples seeking domestic partnerships of the other, non-New York jurisdictions in which they can marry and have their marriage legally recognized in New York instead. This is interesting, as it both shames New York State, takes dollars from us for being fuck-ups, but also is, in some way, a first step to eliminating the domestic partnership (which both straight and gay couples, and pairs who are not in romantic/sexual relationships are eligible for in New York City), which grants only a very limited set of rights, but holds some interest locally for those philosophically opposed to marriage.

  • Monks battle the casket cartel.

  • Last night on Angel: Read more... ).

  • Last night on White Collar: Read more... )

  • Last night on Covert Affairs: Read more... )
  • sundries

    Aug. 11th, 2010 08:29 am
  • Hey, when I say don't be assholes the correct response is not ignoring people's boundaries and/or making DIAF remarks. I am not happy.

  • Fuck Yeah, Skeksis!

  • I find the idea of "Things That Are Not Like Guns" weirdly hilarious. Last night Patty and I had a long discussion about to what degree sharks are, or are not, like guns. Sharks are, for the record, not like guns.

  • HPOA girl likely fake. Some iteration of just that thing shows up every couple of years, and the story is always too perfect -- pretty chick (you side with her), industry people love to hate (Wall Street now, Internet start-ups then), with lots of expected sexism (it could be an after-school special!), culminating with an attack on some Internet phenomenon that annoys the fuck out of a lot of people (Farmville).

  • The flight attendant story is still real though.

  • And so is that of the guy who took his bus on a 1,300 mile detour.

  • Interesting story about the legality of 66 marriage licenses issues to same sex couples in New Mexico in 2004. They stand.

  • Mexico City same-sex marriages must be recognized as legal throughout Mexico.

  • And Costa Rica has ruled against a referendum that would take a vote on recognizing same-sex unions. The courts says such a vote would put LGBT at a disadvantage.

  • Is that your baby? About being mistake for the nanny in multi-racial families.

  • Patty sent this to me yesterday as "Horrifying Inception Find." There's really little more I can add, but I'll warn you it's a screen-shot of a Craigslist casual encounters ad, the language is NSFW, and it's in the category of dirty, dirty cosplay sex. I share because I care.

  • Rules for hats flumox hipsters: I don't care if your fedora cost $80, when you're inside, you take it off.

  • I hate this fucking Jack/Auggie fic. Okay, I've finally got Auggie's voice, and I know where it's going and what is already ridiculously wrong with the whole thing and faily and needs to be fixed. But increasingly, I feel like I can't write this fic without making a mess. Every online conversation I see about Auggie on blogs related to disabiity issues has about six different sides. Which is to say, I don't think it's possible to produce this story without being really offensive to multiple someones.

    That said, I'm still beating my head against the thing, because I think the pairing and the story make sense and that it should be possible to tell a good story that isn't faily. So, if you're tuned in to Covert Affairs, and particularly if you're viewing it from a living with disabilities perspective, and have a comment about what they are doing right or wrong with Auggie (aside from the actor not actually being blind, since that's a perfectly reasonable topic for conversation, but one that won't help me solve this story) that you'd like to share, I am so all ears. Aaaaaaaaaaaaargh.

  • Speaking of Covert Affairs -- Read more... )

  • Which brings us to White Collar -- Read more... )
  • sundries

    Jul. 27th, 2010 09:21 am
  • Yesterday, my father called me and told me not to get gout.

  • Hey, can we talk about John Stewart's facial hair? I think he looks hot (minus the marshmallow fluff); Patty hates it. But we both want to know, WHY this grooming change. Anyone?

  • No one told me, NO ONE TOLD ME, that the actor who plays Arthur in Inception is that kid from Third Rock from the Sun. I read Arthur/Eames porn yesterday and now I feel dirty, not in the good way.

  • You know what's awesome about Inception? You (read: me) can write something really long and smart about it and be totally wrong. Awesome interview with Dileep Rao here.

  • Gay tango festival in Argentina. Meanwhile, New York City will be having its own LGBT tango festival in October. One day I should like to be less incompetent at tango than I am, but I think it means Patty and I taking proper lessons as opposed to the quickies in crowded ballrooms wherein I get all frustrated and am no joy to anyone.

  • CNN has an odd article (it's the slightly breezy tone), about the mental health issues potentially involved in getting plastic surgery to look like a particular celebrity. The article, somewhat hilariously, also tells us that "not everyone can look like a Pitt or a Jolie, despite the advancements in plastic surgery."

  • Hey can anyone tell me if Chocomize is related to Chocri or which came first or whatever?

  • How to measure yourself for custom menswear. Note: specific instructions from specific retailers/designers, etc, may vary; listen to them first. Also note: if you are female bodied there's stuff obviously not included in here that you'd want to consider for both fit and presentation/illusion; if you have a question, ask me.

  • I have, because of its upcoming conference in New York and a series of awesome "Tourist, don't be a asshole" things people are writing for it, become aware of BlogHer. Would anyone care to shed some light on this thing? Since my main reaction is one of (inappropriately) blaming women for being timid about speaking or existing online mixed with (moderately more appropriate) generalized rage that it should be this way. What is BlogHer? Do you use it? It is a good thing? Why should I shut my face? Help, help, I'm being confused! (ETA: For some reason, several commenters have assumed that my theoretical discomfort with BlogHer comes from some issue related to SAHMs, despite the fact I, in no way, mention motherhood in this item; more on what I was trying to puzzle out in this comment).

  • Prepositions and the ongoing mess over the Islamic center that may be built near World Trade Center Site.

  • A bizarre story involving a military contractor, a memory erasing pill that doesn't exist, a $100,000 belt buckle and some hookers. And not, by the way, written by William Gibson.

  • [livejournal.com profile] xtricks has another installment in what I can't seem to stop calling Teh Buttsex Series! The concluding list of "what is not in the butt" made me laugh so hard I am ashamed.

  • Because of Gattaca news stories about one of Saturn's moons make me tear up: The lakes of Titan are shrinking.

  • Last night on Angel: Read more... )

  • It's Tuesday. Does you know what Tuesday means? White Collar and Covert Affairs. Still working on the Auggie/Jack fic, but it's working. Also thinking someone should write a Covert Affairs/Inception crossover. You know you want Auggie hunting Arthur down in dreamspace, right?

    Meanwhile, much to Patty's relief, Project Runway starts Thursday.

    I think we're going to try to see The Kids are All Right this week.
  • sundries

    Jul. 20th, 2010 09:40 am
  • Announcing The Society of Friends of the Text. This is an outgrowth of what we did in Bristol and while there isn't a lot of content there yet, there will be soon. I'm hoping to finish my conference report tonight to post there and will post my response to the paired paper there eventually as well.

  • [livejournal.com profile] usullusa recently came out to her (I actually don't know your pronoun preference, let me know if I should change this) parents as queer. Their response has been to bar her from their house (when they are not trying to confine her to it), threaten her physically, use dehumanizing language towards her, demand she beg their forgiveness, harass her when she has been outside the home and engage in gender-policing towards her. Read more... )

    If you can assist her in this NYC-area hunt for long-term or odd job employment, please let her know. She has posted a remarkably sanitized run-down of her situation here. She is someone Patty & I both know in the face-to-face world, and we are frustrated not to be able to offer the types of resources needed here. I can, however, be loud.

  • The auction to help [livejournal.com profile] theotoky graduate college is also ongoing. You can find it at [livejournal.com profile] graduate_maria. The fundraising goal is $5,000. Right now, including donations, buy-it-now items, and bids for items that haven't yet closed, we're just past the $1,000 mark. Please consider bidding, offering an item or boosting the signal. Why we're holding this fundraiser is explained in the community profile information.

  • Heaven help us: [livejournal.com profile] newyorkers is a spotlight community on LJ currently. Meanwhile, I may strangle someone. Look at the tags. Be specific in your queries. And don't tell us about how you love New York City but have never been here but really miss it. Or post your crappy photo essay about it from three years ago. Or otherwise get in the way of what the community is for: practical help on specific issues for people living here, people visiting, and people thinking about coming here. Arrrrrrrgh!

  • Problems with early breast cancer detection.

  • Constance McMillan has won: Her school will update its anti-discrimination policy to include sexual orientation (a first for Mississippi) and pay her $35,000.

  • Gay marriage and the Indian diaspora in California. via [livejournal.com profile] redstapler.

  • Essentially teen-retailer (okay, Patty and I both totally shop there) Forever 21 is now marketing maternity wear in, coincidentally, states with higher than average rates of teen pregnancy. They deny the marketing strategy (try harder, folks), and soon enough, you'll hear various squeals of outraged horror that someone is suggesting that young pregnant people be allowed to wear something other than sackcloth, ashes and a wooden sign that says "whore" around their necks. This one isn't going to be fun. via [livejournal.com profile] redstapler.

  • [livejournal.com profile] bitsyrant talks about a relatively innocuous-seeming (if catty) tweet from Steven Moffat and why it can/will/may actually create a big mess by implication and, as such, was a pretty ill-advised moment.

  • I hate this Auggie/Jack story. I've written it three different ways three different times and it's STILL NOT WORKING. Read more... )

  • I haven't looked at this in a while, but moving into SDCC and with the not-unsurprising aftermath of Infinitus at hand and a current Twitter kerfluffle or two (not directly related to Moffat), it seems a good time to relink patronage, transactional relationships and fandom. Maybe if I have time later (and let's be frank, I probably won't), I'll write a bit about for-profit and non-profit cons and why neither should suck, but sometimes both do for totally different reasons. Of course, both versions can also bring the awesome.

  • Last night Patty and I returned to Angel. Read more... )

  • Meanwhile, who wants an "Angel vs. Torchwood: Cracky Spinoff Deathmatch" panel at Gallifrey? I don't really know what it would be about, but I think it would be AWESOME.
  • We have plan: Patty will be home Saturday. Yay.

  • Tragically, she'll probably be here too late or too tired for the Moulin Rouge singalong. Life is cruel.

  • Have to put up a few more auction things tonight, but remember that bidding at [livejournal.com profile] graduate_maria opens at 12:01am EST on 7/15/2010. You can still add new items to auction after that point, but it's nice to have a much stuff up by tonight as possible. So far things posted including awesome art, handmade items, fanfiction, a steno starter kit, laster-etched glassware with the custom design of your choice and more. For those willing to signal boost, now is a good time!

  • The Argentinian senate votes on the legalization of gay marriage today.

  • While not going to Infinitus was TOTALLY the right choice (I just got off a plane, the thought of getting on another one tonight is AWFUL), I'm a bit sad. Have fun, you all.

  • Last night the new season of White Collar began, and I liked it very much. The show is still very much a 2+2=5 experience for me, in that the thing itself is greater than the sum of its parts, mostly because of the chemistry between all the performers. And it's the opposite of Merlin -- here the chemistry helps the story instead of consistently getting in the way of it.

    White Collar and gender issues, let me rant. )

    About last night's actual episode, probably not spoilers, but I can never tell anymore. )

    And since I was mentioning it to [livejournal.com profile] bodlon last night and he hadn't seen it, if you like Tim Dekay go netflix Carnivale right now, even if it was designed for a three season arc and only got two; even if it's super disturbing and occasionally frustrating in terms of internal mystery. It is, among other things, one of the most interesting examinations of female sexuality I've seen on screen.

  • Then I watched Covert Affairs which isn't very good and also has one of these central mystery plots I don't really care for. Let's talk about the blind guy, though. )

  • I don't know if it's my reading habits lately or if this there is suddenly a spate of Torchwood fic about Ianto adjusting not to the idea of being attracted to and sleeping with Jack, and not about Ianto dealing with being out in the public world, but Ianto dealing with a sense of internal disconnect regarding being out to himself or having a life very different than the one he once anticipated: i.e., waking up next to Jack, negotiating domesticity, not having the easy heteronormative guidance of "okay, I'm the guy, now I do this" about all the weird little nitpicky things about sharing intimate space with someone. Has anyone else noticed this? I'm not sure I'm even explaining it well. Anyway, it's a potentially interesting phenomenon (if it's not just all in my head), both for theme and timing.

  • Did anyone, btw, debunk that Torchwood casting sheet yet? It's fake, btw, but I don't feel like showing my math. Someone should get on that.

  • Despite not being a Holmes fan, and not even converted to such through the research I did for Bristol, I have to say, Moffat's Sherlock looks very smart, and I may be watching. And I'm not just saying this because Moffat is now on Twitter.

  • [livejournal.com profile] redstapler just sent me this: OMGWTF, Batpug!
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