kore: (Default)
[personal profile] kore

//just lies in bed watching it repeatedly

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Oct. 15th, 2017 07:46 pm
beatrice_otter: Me in red--face not shown (Default)
[personal profile] beatrice_otter
So it turns out I'll be home for Thanksgiving for the first time in almost a decade after all!

I live half a continent away from my family, and I only get four weeks of vacation per year.  (More precisely, four SUNDAYS of vacation per year.)  It generally works out to one at Christmas, one in early spring, and two in late summer.  Between Thanksgiving being murder for flying, and how close it is to Christmas, I generally just stay at home.  And because going to someone else's family holiday dinner, particularly when you are their pastor, is hella awkward and cooking a holiday meal for one is just depressing, I generally don't have any kind of celebration that day.

Well!  This year, I have a new niece, who is SO PRECIOUS, FOLKS, and who had the good taste to be born on my birthday.  Given that her father (my brother) does shift work at a power plant, and my parents own their own business which has a very irregular schedule, and my own schedule is rather complicated, arranging dates for such an event is ... difficult.  So in late August/early September, we were discussing things, and there were not many Sundays that would work for everybody, and none at all until November.  Then it occurred to me that if it were scheduled for either the Sunday before or the Sunday after Thanksgiving, I could be home for Thanksgiving!  And said as much.  And Mom said she would check if the Sunday before would work, but that sounded good, and she would let me know, and if it couldn't be then, they should probably just see if they could schedule it for the Sunday after Christmas when I am normally home anyway.

I heard nothing.  For a month and a half.  I assumed that it hadn't worked for November, and would be after Christmas.

In a phone call today, my Mom asked me if I had my plane ticket home for Thanksgiving yet.

"Wait, what?"

"You know, for the baptism."

"We're doing it in November?"

"Of course we are!"

"Does ... does [brother] know?  Does [sister-in-law]?"

Apparently, after getting everybody's responses that yes, the day would work, she just assumed that everybody knew that it had been scheduled for that date, without telling everybody that yes, it worked for everybody.  I love my Mom, but she does this.  She will schedule things and not tell people.  She knows how everything fits together, and so she just assumes that everyone else knows too.  Even when you ask her directly, sometimes she'll leave out crucial information because she'll assume that either you don't need to know it or you already know it because it should be obvious.

My Dad loves Google Calendar.  It's the first time in their marriage that he's been able to figure out what's going on ahead of time, because Mom uses it religiously and now everything is in one place.  Instead of in five different places, one of which is inside her head.

This is definitely an emotional labor issue, but at the same time ... scheduling is not the exclusive province of my mother because Dad doesn't want to help and participate, okay?

Anyway, now I have a plane ticket home and the good news is that I will be home for Thanksgiving!

+1 Goth level

Oct. 16th, 2017 12:10 am
dhampyresa: (that's high profile)
[personal profile] dhampyresa
I'd been feeling like I wasn't goth enough for a while, but this feeling is gone since this morning.

I had a really weird dream last night in which I was, for some obscure reason, taking part in a baking show presided over/judged by the Raven Queen, the Goddess of Death in Critical Role (and DnD -- but this was definitely a Critical Role thing). Then I blew my fuse because we were supposed to cook with unsalted butter and WHAT KIND OF HERETIC etc. I'm pretty sure I was overdoing it to gum up the works for some reason? But in any case, shouting at the Raven Queen made me level up, so obviously I took that level in Goth, which she thought was hilarious, appropriate and well-deserved.

Clearly I am goth enough. The dream argument I had with a death goddess over baking ingredient says so.

Also, I finally wrote prompts for my yuletide letter. Sorry for the delay to anyone waiting on it.

I'll do the linking in appropriate places tomorrow.

Fic: Nyota's Choice

Oct. 15th, 2017 04:44 pm
beatrice_otter: Uhura and Uhura Prime (Too awesome for one timeline)
[personal profile] beatrice_otter
Title: Nyota's Choice
Fandom: Star Trek AOS
Characters: Spock, Nyota
Author: beatrice_otter
Rating: kid
Length: 3,802 words
Betaed by: Laura JV
Series: Keshta'Shivau
Summary: Sarek gets married. Nyota has a decision to make.

At AO3 and tumblr
Sequel to The Desert Between

It took Nyota most of a shift to notice it, but there was something up with Spock. )

Next work in the series: Children of the Desert

(no subject)

Oct. 14th, 2017 09:42 am
pedanther: (Default)
[personal profile] pedanther
Now that the performing arts festival and such are out of the way, I've been able to get to the gaming group again. Last time, I played two games, Lovecraft Letter and The 7th Continent.

There are a few people in the gaming group who seem to be collecting variants of the card game Love Letter, and Lovecraft Letter is another of those. This one takes its theme from the works of HP Lovecraft, with heroic investigators battling horrific tentacled monstrosities and Things Man Was Not Meant To Know. The variant mechanic is the addition of that thing no Lovecraft-themed game is complete without, a sanity meter; losing sanity makes a player more susceptible to being knocked out of the game but opens up access to more powerful cards that a saner character wouldn't consider using.

The 7th Continent is an exploration and survival game in which a group of characters explore a mysterious and recently-discovered continent. The full game map is reportedly several metres across, but it's broken up into small numbered tiles that are laid out one by one as the characters explore, so at any given point there's only a small portion of the map visible and taking up table space. Each game begins with a card that gives a starting tile and an objective (the one we used for our game, which is recommended for beginners, has a picture of a crudely drawn map with X marking the spot; other cards apparently have more cryptic instructions). The journey includes a mixture of random encounters and scripted events (the details of which will vary somewhat depending on which characters are being played and what inventory they're carrying), and is designed to play out over many hours; the game includes a "save" mechanic where you can store your current location tile, character and inventory cards, and other cards representing the game state, and begin again later from where you left off.

I'm trying to decide what I think of The 7th Continent based on the couple of hours I've played, because the the second edition is currently on Kickstarter and they're saying Kickstarter is likely to be the only way to get a copy because it's too complicated and expensive a game to be viable as a mass-produced retail item. The expense is not unfair given how much stuff there is in the box, but it might be a bit much for me considering that if I do buy a copy I may not get to play it very often.
kore: (Prozac nation)
[personal profile] kore
*tries blacklisting The Good Place everywhere because it stomps nearly every single one of my buttons hard, especially paranoia† and derealization and 'everything is a trick'*

Oh, apparently it ate Yuletide? Just fucking great.

(This is not even 'consistent.' I love Shirley Jackson and Philip K. Dick and other mindbending works about what is real and what isn't and how do we tell and how can we tell and so on. But every so often there's something that lines up too well with the cracks in my head, I guess is a way to put it, like the wolf sections of Kiernan's Drowning Girl or bits of Donnie Darko and my brain's like WHA HUNH NO WE'RE FREAKING OUT NOW PREPARE FOR PANIC PLEASE MAKE SURE YOUR TRAY TABLES ARE IN THEIR FULL UPRIGHT POSITIONS RIGHT UP YOUR ASS. It's one of those things that is so idiosyncratic but also hits me so hard I don't really know what to do.)

Yeah I have had actual paranoia. It is not funny. Mental illness is not quirky and cute. -- Also yeah, I tried to watch some clips of it to see if I was just being silly and the effect would lessen. SPOILER: IT GOT KIND OF BIGGER

music in the air

Oct. 13th, 2017 09:10 am
kore: (Orpheus & Eurydice)
[personal profile] kore
Rhiannon Giddens, one of the winners of this year's "genius grants" performing the great Rosetta Tharpe song "Up Above My Head":

STUNNING live version on Jools Holland:

Meet Rhiannon Giddens, Newly Minted MacArthur 'Genius' (NPR)

In her recordings and live performances, Giddens has mined the history of the African American string band tradition, introducing new audiences to the black banjoists and fiddlers whose influences have been left out of popular narratives of the lineage of folk and country music. Giddens is a native of the Piedmont region of North Carolina, and she trained as an opera singer before returning to North Carolina to immerse herself in traditional American roots music through study of archival recordings and the mentorship of the octogenarian fiddler Joe Thompson. Having honed her skills on the fiddle and 5-string banjo, she co-founded with two other bandmates the Carolina Chocolate Drops in order to share this tradition with a new generation of listeners. More recently, Giddens has released two solo albums. Tomorrow Is My Turn (2015) offers riveting interpretations of songs that were written or made famous by women, spanning folk, bluegrass, country, gospel, jazz, Celtic, and other genres. Freedom Highway (2017) consists mainly of original compositions by Giddens, and the album traverses the experience of African Americans from slavery to the present. Drawing inspiration from slave narratives, early twentieth-century songwriters such as Mississippi John Hurt, and even a rap about police violence written by her nephew, Freedom Highway is at once a recuperation of suppressed voices and a history lesson. - (MacArthur Foundation)

Dear Yuletide Writer 2017

Oct. 9th, 2017 02:43 am
dhampyresa: (Default)
[personal profile] dhampyresa

Thank you for writing for me! I'm sure whatever you write me will be wonderful.

Feel free to poke around this journal or my Ao3 account (username: [archiveofourown.org profile] sevenofspade ) if you want to. My letters tag is here.

I have six Do Not Wants: allegory/metaphor of real world politics, incest, rape, child abuse, character death and dysphoria. When these are canon, please don't focus on them. I would also prefer not to have to deal with people losing things important to them and toxic living arrangements, be that family or roomates. Thank you.

On the other hand, there are a lot of things I do want. Here’s a partial list. (I obviously don’t expect you to stick all of these in one story, that would be impossible.)

General likes )

Feel free to take prompts in whichever direction you like! And if none of my prompts work for you, then write whatever you want -- I'll be happy with anything.

[Prompts to be expanded as soon as I can.]
[EDIT OCTOBER 15: Prompts added. Sorry for the delay.]

Campaign (Podcast) (Bacta (Star Wars: Campaign Podcast), Lyntel'luroon (Campaign), Tamlin Jorun)

Short version: Teenage clone dad, action archeologist aunt, Force sensitive five year old who is also a noir PI. Gen adventures!

Long version:
The canon: This is a podcast set in the Star Wars universe, about five years after Revenge of the Sith. It's actual play, meaning that you listen to a bunch of people play the Star Wars RPG. Each episode is about an hour. The story follows the crew of the Mynock as they flee the Empire and attempt to raise a Force-sensitive five year old. It's free online here.

The prompts: I love everything about these three. Tamlin narrating à la noir movie outloud is AMAZING and I wish it showed up more. More archeology adventures funtimes with Lyn! With her teaching Tamlin maths, why not teach him archeology as well? And you know Bacta is going to need to teach the kid how to use a lightsaber. How did Bacta end up in that prison in the prologue? I would love to hear about the three of them working on an episode of their podcast.

Cleverman (Alinta West, Latani (Cleverman) )

Short version: Teen girls on the run for the dad of one of them. I ship them. Please let them be happy.

Long version:
The canon: Cleverman is an Australian TV show. It currenly has two seasons of 6 episodes each, with episodes being around 50 minutes. The story is set in an alternatr Australia, in which the Hairy people became known sometime back. This has caused racial tensions and the creation of a Zone by the Australian government to park Hairy people in and genetic screening. Also, there are ghosts and superpowers!

The prompts: I'd love futurefic where everything is okay and they're happy, either because the government got its shit together ethics-wise or because the two of them made it out somewhere. Maybe an AU in which things never went wrong. Angst related to the fact that Alinta's dad is the one hunting Latani's people would be great or about how Alinta sacrificed her freedom for Latani.

Locke & Key (Any of: Jackie Veda, Kinsey Locke, Lucas "Dodge" Caravaggio )

Short version: Two teens and the eldritch horror one of them dated. Worldbuilding.

Long version:
The canon: This is a finished horror comic. It has 37 issues, collected in 6 tpbs. Following the brutal murder of the father, the family moves back to his childhood home, Keyhouse, in Lovecraft, Massachusetts. To say more would spoil it. It goes through a bunch of different kinds of horror as it makes it way through the intricate plot.

The prompts: I would love worldbuilding fic and if you have to go canon-divergent AU or future!fic or past!fic (is that a thing? It should be a thing) to do it, then go right ahead. I would love fic that explore more mundane uses for the Keys or explains what this-or-that Key that never got used in canon does. Or make up an entirely new one! Or write about the Lovecraft psychiatrist (because SO MUCH THERAPY is needed, by pretty much everyone at every point) that somehow everyone tells the truth to and so has to deal with Lovecraftian terrors on their couch. An AU in which they use the Keys to be superheroes!

Marvel Secret Wars Battleworlds (Victor von Doom | God-Emperor Doom, Valeria Richards | Head of the Foundation)

Short version: A mad scientist who became a god and his daughter who is a science genius. SCIENCE! Worldbuilding.

Long version:
The canon: The nine issues miniseries from 2015 about the time the entire Marvel multiverse got destroyed and Doctor Doom made himself a god by saving what he could and turning into a patchwork universe, Battleworld.

The prompts: Anything expanding on Doom and Valeria and/or God Emperor and Head of the Foundation would be great. I also like Susan and Strange a lot, so you're welcome to include them. And of course worldbuilding would be AMAZING. There are hints Valeria knows something's off even before the ship crashes. Maybe she confronts Doom over it and things go differently? Future fic in which Battleworld remained and Doom gives Valeria the God Emperor/Ruler of Battleworld mantle.

Punic Wars RPF (Hannibal Barca (Punic Wars RPF), Publius Cornelius Scipio Africanus Maior (Punic Wars RPF) )

Short version: Ancient Mediterranean generals! I ship them. Please let them be happy.

Long version:
The canon: The Second Punic War is a war that is full to the brim with feats of badassery (the Crossing of the Alps, Cannae, the fall of Carthago Nova) and things ridiculous, yet epic (Archimedes' death lasers). There's a movie starring Alexander Siddig as Hannibal for the war itself and Extra Credit: Extra History: The Punic Wars for the war and some more context, both before and after. Polybius can be found on Project Gutenberg, Perseus and Wikisource, as can Livy.

The prompts: An AU in which they're somehow on the same side (whichever). The Pun-ic War (I LIKE PUNS OK). IN SPAAAAAAAAAACE AU. Hannibal wins AU. He's a Carthaginian general sworn never to be a friend to Rome, he's a Roman general trying to avenge his father's death by Carthaginians, TOGETHER THEY FIGHT CRIME. I ship them, but you can totally go gen or with other ships instead, idc. Hannibal/Maharbal? Yes. Aemilia/Scipio? Also there. Ditto Aemilia/Scipio/Hannibal.

Unbelievable Gwenpool (Gwen Poole (Unbelievable Gwenpool) )

Short version: Girl transported to her favourite fictional universe who became a superhero! I ship her with Sarah (Terrible Eye). Friendship fic.

Long version:
The canon: A mostly self-contained Marvel comic about a girl from a world much like outs who got transported into her comics. She models herself after the most popular character, Deadpool -- the only way not to die is to set herself up as a main character, because everyone else is just cannon fodder, right? And then she makes friends with a bunch of misfits.

The prompts: Team fic! Friendship fic! Mostly here for friendships and shenanigans, honestly. If I ship Gwen with anyone, it's with Sarah, but friendship between them is also supercool! Maybe bonding with Vincent the Doombot? What about exploring one of the weird holidays in that one issue? What about Gwen's early days? How did she meet Ronnie? Futurefic! Maybe they save the world!

Thank you so much for writing for me!

(Comments welcome.)


Oct. 5th, 2017 10:26 pm
beatrice_otter: WWII soldier holding a mug with the caption "How about a nice cup of RESEARCH?" (Research)
[personal profile] beatrice_otter
In the Rivers of London audible short story "A Rare Book of Cunning Device," Elsie "Hatbox" Winstanley refers to having seen books used to hide hand grenades in some place that sounds like "Oluwayo" or "Boluweia" in 1975.  Is she referring to Boluwayo, the city in Zimbabwe?

other literary news

Oct. 5th, 2017 02:26 pm
kore: (Default)
[personal profile] kore
As long as the Lit Nobel Prize continues to go to 'NOT URSULA K. LE GUIN,' I don't really care right now. SHE'S EIGHTY-SEVEN, PETER ENGLUND, LET'S STEP IT THE FUCK UP HERE.

(They could have given it to Italo Calvino, they could have given it to Leonard Cohen, they could have given it to Borges....they gave it to Faulkner ffs.)

(no subject)

Oct. 5th, 2017 01:50 pm
kore: (Anatomy of Melancholy)
[personal profile] kore
I didn't think I'd ever live to see the unexpurgated journals of Sylvia Plath published (for....a number of reasons, heh) and then BAM, there they were not even fifty years after her death, a complete surprise (to me anyway). But I despaired over ever getting her letters. And then BAM, not even twenty years after the Journals, here they are or volume 1 of them anyway, and I found out I could get them earlier from Amazon UK -- some brouhaha over the covers say what? I don't care, GIVE THEM TO ME, EVEN IF IT'S ONLY A DAY EARLIER. I NEED IT. So the book came and I was excited for the first time in weeks, months it felt like. T says I tore the package open on the couch and was insensate for a couple of hours afterwards. A bomb could have landed and I wouldn't have been touched.

-- Yeah yeah, the cover, the cover. I raved about it some at poor [personal profile] oursin's blog but really, I don't honestly care, except my honest and probably Terrible Feminist reaction is IT'S NOT A BIKINI FOR CHRIST'S SWEET SUFFERING SAKE. If someone's going to get something that wrong right out of the gate I don't pay attention to them. It's a character flaw, what can I say. But like I said over there I honestly don't give a damn because you open it up and the first letter goes:

Monday 19 February 1940

Dear Father
I am coming home soon. Are you as glad as I am?
Over in Frank's work room I got some ink on my fingers which never comes of! I had to rub them with a stone. And the stone took it of.
....My letter is not very long.
....Mummy likes me to wright in red. But nearly everybody likes me to wright in blue or black.

Written to her father -- she was sent away because of his fatal illness -- whose death nine months later, less than two weeks before her own eighth birthday, would haunt her until her own....about how a father-figure taught her to take indelible ink off her fingers "with a stone" and the incredible correspondences with her poetry, her work, her life-art already piling up -- The trees of the mind are black. The light is blue, "black fingers" of yew trees, the red of "Cut" and "Poppies in October" and "Poppies in July," her constant references to stones and skulls and the moon who was "my mother. She is not sweet like Mary" and Hughes's poem on how she "painted hearts" on everything -- even her posthumous reputation! with "everybody likes" either "blue or black" -- it was dizzying. Hand to god I had to put the book down for a second. And that was the FIRST letter. Talk about a telegrammatic precis of a life, right there, unfolding through all the rest of her years like a cup of flowering tea, but all right there from the start. It was like a punch.

So that made me happy. (too happy probably, but even hypomania is preferable to glum doom sometimes)


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