(no subject)

Jul. 27th, 2017 12:42 pm[personal profile] maju
maju: Clean my kitchen (Default)
I love online chat helplines! So much better than trying to talk to a customer service person on the phone. I've just chatted with somebody from the car rental company who said she has removed my phone number from the reservation and the fax attempts should stop within an hour. (An hour might be a bit long at the rate they've been calling, but at least they should stop eventually.)

Hey, cis allies!

Jul. 27th, 2017 12:38 pm[personal profile] tim
tim: Tim with short hair, smiling, wearing a black jacket over a white T-shirt (Default)
In light of the trans military ban, a lot of you have written things on social media along the lines of, "Trans people, I love and support you, you're not a burden, etc." That's nice, but it would be nicer if you told your fellow cis people that disrespecting trans people isn't behavior that you accept. Another thing you can do to show that your words aren't just words is to give a trans person money for necessary medical care that many trans people can't access (and accessing it will almost certainly become harder in the next year.)

Here's one opportunity to do just that. Rory is an acquaintance of mine and I can vouch for them being a legit person with a need.

Posted by David Beard MA, FSA, FSA Scot

An incredibly rare wooden container from the Bronze Age has been discovered on the Lötschberg mountain in Switzerland, still with detectable traces of the grains that the box contained.
The box was found at the summit of the Lötschenpass, a transit through a glacier, at an elevation of about 2,650 metres above sea level. It's thought to have remained frozen since it was lost or abandoned by its owner in 1500 BCE.
Such discoveries are rare. Only one other similar artefact has been discovered, found in another alpine pass, the Schnidejoch, about 25km to the west of the Lötschenpass. Perhaps the most famous discovery from the ice-packed Alps is Ötzi the iceman, a human discovered dating from about 3300 BCE.
Analysis of the box showed traces of spelt, emmer and barley, according to a study in the journal Scientific Reports. The research is the first time that such detailed information on food contents has been retrieved from a Bronze Age artefact.
Read the rest of this article...

Posted by David Beard MA, FSA, FSA Scot


Hold on to your Viking helmet; you’re about to dig, layer by layer, into one of the most extraordinary Viking hoards ever found on the British Isles – the Galloway Hoard – with Dr Martin Goldberg, Senior Curator at National Museums Scotland

The team of metal detectorists had been working this field in Galloway for some time, but what they eventually found was way beyond their expectations.

The top layer contained eleven ingots and eleven silver arm-rings that had been flattened into bullion. They would have been made from the type of ingots they’re buried with. There’s a nice variety of decoration, with lots of punched lines and hatches. This type of arm-ring is normally found in hoards in Ireland and there are some from North Wales and from Lancashire – all around the Irish Sea, but we don’t have a lot of this particular type in Scotland. This hoard completes the circle around the Irish Sea.

They’re called a Hiberno-Scandinavian type of arm-ring and obviously the Scandinavian is the new element added to the cultural mix at the time, but they’re given that Hiberno- prefix because they’re normally found in Ireland. For me it is always the hyphen between these cultural labels where the interesting things are happening.

Read the rest of this article...

Posted by Amanda

The Secret History of the Pink Carnation

RIPPED BODICE RECOMMENDED: The Secret History of the Pink Carnation is $2.99! This has romance, a bit of mystery, and some historical elements. On a podcast episode with Bea and Leah of The Ripped Bodice, Leah mentioned that she recommends this book pretty frequently. Have you read this one?

Deciding that true romantic heroes are a thing of the past, Eloise Kelly, an intelligent American who always manages to wear her Jimmy Choo suede boots on the day it rains, leaves Harvard’s Widener Library bound for England to finish her dissertation on the dashing pair of spies the Scarlet Pimpernel and the Purple Gentian. What she discovers is something the finest historians have missed: a secret history that begins with a letter dated 1803. Eloise has found the secret history of the Pink Carnation the most elusive spy of all time, the spy who single-handedly saved England from Napoleon’s invasion.

The Secret History of the Pink Carnation, a wildly imaginative and highly adventurous debut, opens with the story of a modern-day heroine but soon becomes a book within a book. Eloise Kelly settles in to read the secret history hoping to unmask the Pink Carnation’s identity, but before she can make this discovery, she uncovers a passionate romance within the pages of the secret history that almost threw off the course of world events. How did the Pink Carnation save England? What became of the Scarlet Pimpernel and the Purple Gentian? And will Eloise Kelly find a hero of her own?

Add to Goodreads To-Read List →

This book is on sale at:

Barnes & Noble Kobo Google Play iBooks

and

amazon

 

 

 

Blood of the Earth

Blood of the Earth by Faith Hunter is $2.99! This urban fantasy novel is the first in the Soulwood series, which seems to be a spin-off of Hunter’s Jane Yellowrock series. It was also recommended during our SBTB Reader Recommendation Party at RT 2017. I remember because I immediately added it to be TBR pile.

Set in the same world as the New York Times bestselling Jane Yellowrock novels, an all-new series starring Nell Ingram, who wields powers as old as the earth.

When Nell Ingram met skinwalker Jane Yellowrock, she was almost alone in the world, exiled by both choice and fear from the cult she was raised in, defending herself with the magic she drew from her deep connection to the forest that surrounds her.

Now, Jane has referred Nell to PsyLED, a Homeland Security agency policing paranormals, and agent Rick LaFleur has shown up at Nell’s doorstep. His appearance forces her out of her isolated life into an investigation that leads to the vampire Blood Master of Nashville.

Nell has a team—and a mission. But to find the Master’s kidnapped vassal, Nell and the PsyLED team will be forced to go deep into the heart of the very cult Nell fears, infiltrating the cult and a humans-only terrorist group before time runs out…

Add to Goodreads To-Read List →

This book is on sale at:

Barnes & Noble Kobo Google Play iBooks

and

amazon

 

 

 

Dare to Run

Dare to Run by Jen McLaughlin is $2.99! This is the first book in the Boston-set Sons of Steel Row series. The heroine is a bartender and the hero has criminal ties, which I know isn’t for everyone. Readers loved the pacing and action, but wanted the heroine to have more of a backbone. It has a 3.7-star rating on Goodreads.

The New York times bestselling author of the Out of Line Novels takes readers to Boston where one gang of criminals knows how being bad can be so good…
 
She knows what he’s like on Boston’s mean streets. Now she’s going to find out if he’s got some heart.

Lucas Donahue is not ashamed of his criminal past, but after a brief stint in prison, he’s ready to go legit and live a normal life. The problem is, no one leaves the gang without permission—even if he is one of the boss’s top men. Plus someone’s placed a hit on him. And then there’s that feisty little bartender who’s going to cause him even more trouble.

Heidi Greene knows to keep her distance from a ladies’ man like Lucas—even if she can’t keep her eyes off him. When he rescues her from an attack in the alley outside her bar, she’s forced to stay by his side for safety. But the longer she spends time with him, the greater her chances are for getting hurt in more ways than one.

Add to Goodreads To-Read List →

This book is on sale at:

Barnes & Noble Kobo Google Play iBooks

and

amazon

 

 

 

The Last Man on Earth

The Last Man on Earth by Tracy Anne Warren is $2.99! This is a contemporary workplace romance set in the world of advertising. Readers loved the antagonism between the heroine and hero, but found the hero was a bit of a jerk overall. It’s the first book in The Grayson’s series.

From New York Times bestselling author Tracy Anne Warren comes a sexy and romantic new contemporary series about corporate combat in the boardroom and under-the-covers passion in the bedroom……

Idealistic good girl Madelyn Grayson believes in doing what’s right. Even as a high-powered executive in the mad world of advertising, she doesn’t cut corners, making her ad campaigns sizzle without having to burn anyone along the way.

Rival exec Zack Douglas never wastes an opportunity to land the next big deal—especially when it benefits him. A bad boy with a reputation to match, he has no qualms about doing whatever it takes to get ahead, no matter who gets in the way.

When a hot promotion pops up at their company, both Zack and Madelyn wind up on the short list for the position. But as the two square off, they discover that being heated rivals in the office makes for scorching bed play behind closed doors. Will Madelyn’s steamy, secret affair with Mr. Vice make her compromise her ideals—or worse, lose her heart?

Add to Goodreads To-Read List →

This book is on sale at:

Barnes & Noble Kobo Google Play iBooks

and

amazon

 

 

 

(no subject)

Jul. 27th, 2017 11:56 am[personal profile] maju
maju: Clean my kitchen (Default)
Argh, I'm being phone bombed by somebody trying to send me a fax! Who even faxes anything these days? I've just booked a rental car for when I'm in Perth, and the online form inexplicably requested a fax number as part of the booking process. Maybe I should have moved right along to a different car rental company, but this one was the cheapest as well as being a familiar brand, so I just put in our home phone number not expecting that they would try to fax me something. After the booking was complete they sent me a confirmation email which I will print out before I leave, but now they keep trying to fax me something as well. I think they've tried about half a dozen times so far. I answered a couple of times thinking that would make them think the fax had gone through, but it didn't work. Now I'm just ignoring it, while hoping that my booking will still be valid if I don't get their fax. Oh well, I could probably just front up to any of the car rental counters at the airport when I arrive and get a car if it comes to that.

(no subject)

Jul. 27th, 2017 11:34 am[personal profile] jhetley
jhetley: (Default)
I wonder what percentage of the people yammering about military personnel matters have ever, at any time, served in any branch of the military.  Not saying that is a prerequisite for having an opinion, just idle curiosity.

on Arbitration

Jul. 27th, 2017 11:06 am[personal profile] seekingferret
seekingferret: Photo of a button saying "Yes You Can Argue with Me" (argument)
I think this is a really interesting question the Talmud in Sanhedrin deals with, using the model of Moses and Aaron.

If two people disagree about something involving money, they can sue in court and have the court issue a ruling over who is right. There will be a clear winner and a loser and it will be unambiguous who is who, and this may result in bad feelings lingering between the two parties afterward. The result may be just according to Torah law, but that justice may not necessarily be the only thing that matters in the interpersonal relationship.

So suppose you valued peace between people more than you valued getting the 'correct' resolution to the dispute. You might, when approached by two disputants, suggest that rather than trying their case in Beit Din, they first talk to a mediator or arbitrator who can help them figure out a way to settle things out of court in a way that makes everyone get something. According to Talmudic law, such a mediation agreement is generally binding- if both parties agree to the settlement, they can't then go to a Beit Din and ask for justice, unless there was some corruption in the selection of the mediator.

This might seem like a better approach in a lot of situations. Some of the Rabbis in Sanhedrin say it's an obligation on the judge to suggest mediation if they think it will help. But others raise really salient objections.

What if you're a judge and two disputants come to see you. One is rich and powerful, the other is poor. They start telling you about the case and ask if you'll judge it for them. You hear enough detail to know that if you hear the case, the rich man is likely to lose. Is it corrupt for you to suggest mediation, knowing that the outcome will likely be better for the rich man than if you were to enact full justice? Perhaps, because you're not supposed to favor a rich man over a poor one as a judge. BUT what if the virtue of peace is greater than the virtue of justice? Perhaps it's more important to achieve a resolution where both the rich and poor men are satisfied, even though it means harming the poor man financially?

The classic homiletic is that Aaron was rodef shalom, a pursuer of peace at all costs. Whereas Moses believed in seeking true justice even when it harmed the peace.

The Talmud finds a middle ground. Its rule for judges is that they can propose mediation if they fear that they will be forced to rule against the powerful person, however once they hear enough of the case to know that they are likely to rule against the powerful person, they cannot propose mediation. That is, it's corrupt to act when you are sure that your actions are benefitting the rich person, but when it's merely a possibility that it will benefit the rich person, it's okay even if you're hoping for that possibility.

Within this principle, the dispute is between Rabbi Shimon ben Menasya and Resh Lakish over when the moment is when they've heard too much of the case to offer mediation. Rabbi Shimon holds that as soon as they've heard the case, they've heard too much. Resh Lakish holds that even after they've heard the case, as long as they've not made up their mind, they can suggest mediation. This seems to be a dispute about optics vs. intention. Rabbi Shimon ben Menasya thinks optics matter for justice, if the appearance is there that the judge pushed for mediation to favor the powerful person, it is a corruption of justice, while Resh Lakish thinks that so long as the dayan didn't act corruptly, the optics are less important than the pursuit of peace.
umadoshi: (W13 - Helena focused (kleahs))
--I have an appointment with Dr. Awesome at 3, which I'm opening with because since yesterday I've been afraid of forgetting about it. (I usually try to schedule appointments for mid-morning, and usually on Mondays [Monday being the day I'm most sure of not having work in the morning when Casual Job is on], so "mid-afternoon on a Thursday" is deeply counterintuitive.) Along with the B12 shot, I need to talk to her about how badly I've been sleeping (I think the tryptophan isn't helping much anymore), medication stuff, and my specialist appointment last month. (I printed out my notes on that, most of which are seething.)


--One of these days I'm going to have to cave and either look into a new music player or start listening to music on my phone. I've been resistant to the latter for fear of draining the phone battery too quickly, but so many people use their smartphones for music that it must not be as big an issue as I fear; also, I formed that fear back when I had a different phone with much less battery life. (And now I have a...power bank? Portable charger? Whatever they're called...that I picked up last summer when I was briefly playing Pokemon Go. *still annoyed about the game's obnoxious decision to not work for anyone using a rooted/unlocked phone*)


--Another "one of these days" things...I really need to start trying to reconstruct my AMV collection at some point, but it's exhausting to think about. :/


--Last night I wrote about 1100 words, which is more than I'd managed since early June, during [dreamwidth.org profile] nanodownunder. I was up too late doing it, and I don't care. Words! (Words that I'll probably blush over when I get a draft and send it to [dreamwidth.org profile] wildpear...and how long has it been since that was a thought? I've generally gotten pretty blasé about smut. And then there's this.)


--[dreamwidth.org profile] rushthatspeaks has a post up about The War of the Worlds. It's well worth reading, of course, but I'm noting it because I'm laughing at myself for how I get caught on it every time I see H.G. Wells referred to by male pronouns.

(no subject)

Jul. 27th, 2017 11:05 am[personal profile] jhetley
jhetley: (Default)
Rowan berries shading yellow into orange.

Music meme: day 17 of 30

Jul. 27th, 2017 03:46 pm[personal profile] liv
liv: oil painting of seated nude with her back to the viewer (body)
A song that you would sing as a duet on karaoke. I don't do karaoke, and I don't do duets, so this is a bit of a non-starter for me.

No, let me explain, because I'm having fun answering this meme in way too much detail. I think karaoke is an absolutely excellent idea in theory. It's really great to encourage people to sing just for fun and not worry about skill level. And it's really great to use technology to play the backing music and display the lyrics so that someone can just get up and sing the melody with little preparation.

The problem is that for me personally, karaoke means packaging up 30 plus years of abject humiliation over not being able to sing in tune, and asking me to enjoy that in public. I find it hard anyway to make myself sing in front of other people; I do it, because I absolutely do believe that music belongs to everybody (not just people who are "musical"), and shared music is a great way for people to connect. Singing in front of an audience who are paying attention to me, or even worse, in a competition, however light-hearted, is too terrifying.

Duets are possibly extra impossible, because singing in unison with someone else is already hard for me. Especially if they have a lower range; I can't really hear octaves, so I find it very difficult to join in with someone singing in the bass clef range. Singing in harmony is really really hard, because not only do I have to sing the correct notes which I always find difficult to remember, I also have to match the note which is very imperfectly in my head while being distracted by my partner singing a different note that my actual ears can hear. I can sometimes do multi-part harmony if there are several people singing each section, so I can listen to someone else who is singing the same line as me. And I'm fine with parts in music in general when I don't have to worry about pitch. But a sung duet is really tricky.

And really, I can think of very few duets that I know at all, for whatever reason, even to listen to. Let's call the whole thing off might work, because (at least in this superlatively great version with Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong) it's mostly alternating verses or lines between the two singers rather than harmony. But hypothetically, if I were to find the courage to sing karaoke, I probably wouldn't start with something really amazingly great; somehow I'd feel less bad about murdering some ephemeral extruded pop product than attempting an actually good song.

I will admit, though, that my brother and I have been known to sing Always by Bon Jovi, as a sort of duet, sometimes in public and definitely not caring that neither of us can really sing. Partly because we always liked the dubious rhyme of:
I'll be there til the stars don't shine
Til the heavens burst, and the words don't rhyme
And partly because Bon Jovi can't really sing either, he just projected a persona calculated to appeal to teenaged girls in the 90s. So I probably wouldn't sing it actually in karaoke, and I probably wouldn't sing it with anyone other than my brother, but it seems slightly less impossible than any other options, so I think it seems in the spirit of the meme.

video embed )

Posted by Books


If you have a Samsung tablet or phone, you can pick one free book from the list below using the Kindle for Samsung app; additional titles can also be purchased at a discount (generally $1.99), if desired. Samsung Book Deals is similar to the Kindle First program run by Amazon: the picks are from Amazon publisher imprints, but are not “new” books necessarily.

Since I have all but Anita Clenney’s Heart of a Highland Warrior in my library, my choice is pretty easy this month.

Crow Hollow ($4.99 Kindle) by Michael Wallace

In 1676, an unlikely pair—a young Puritan widow and an English spy—journeys across a land where greed and treachery abound.

Prudence Cotton has recently lost her husband and is desperate to find her daughter, captured by the Nipmuk tribe during King Philip’s war. She’s convinced her daughter is alive but cannot track her into the wilderness alone. Help arrives in the form of James Bailey, an agent of the crown sent to Boston to investigate the murder of Prudence’s husband and to covertly cause a disturbance that would give the king just cause to install royal governors. After his partner is murdered, James needs help too. He strikes a deal with Prudence, and together they traverse the forbidding New England landscape looking for clues. What they confront in the wilderness—and what they discover about each other—could forever change their allegiances and alter their destinies.

The Gift ($3.99 Kindle) by Dave Donovan

When high-level governmental programmer Sam Steele is called into his office on his day off, he quickly finds himself at the center of a battle for humanity itself. An alien entity is heading straight for Earth, and an elite team of specialists has been assembled to attempt to make first contact. But despite Steele’s expertise, Colonel Eric Web, his superior and longtime thorn in his side, makes it clear he doesn’t want him there.

The aliens that arrive represent a long-dead race and say they’ve come to help humans defend themselves against an imminent threat, but their help will come with a price. Now the future of humanity hangs in the balance between two men: Web, the regimented, hubristic military man, and Steele, a brilliant man broken by loss and tragedy.

As the team races the clock to try to divine their visitors’ complex instructions, they struggle with infighting and, ultimately, the question of what it means to be human.

Heart of a Highland Warrior: Connor Clan #3 ($3.99 Kindle) by Anita Clenney

A bloodthirsty evil stalks the Connor Clan…

Brave, beautiful, and haunted by her past, demon hunter Anna MacKinley will do anything to help the Connors. Under divine orders, the headstrong warrior travels the world, slaying demons and vampires. When she stumbles upon a hidden stone fortress while searching for her clan’s lost Book of Battles, dark forces swiftly imprison her—and she discovers her cell mate is a gorgeous Scottish warrior who has no memories, but looks strikingly familiar.

And only a secret from the past can win the day…and her heart.

The warriors of the centuries-old Connor Clan search for their missing time-vault and the powerful relic within. What they find is a grave…and a kilt-clad body they fear is the long-lost Tavis Connor. But there may yet be more to the Highland warrior’s fate than a pile of bones. Desperate to save his brother and his clan’s Book of Battles from a demon hell-bent on destruction, Tavis begins a 150-year quest that will end in modern-day New York. But when he wakes, he discovers he’s the one in need of help. His only hope of rescue is a bonny lass who claims to be a warrior. A warrior waging war on demons…and his heart.

What Doesn’t Kill Her ($4.99 Kindle) by Max Allan Collins

Jordan Rivera was an ordinary kid with an ordinary family. Until a vicious killer took it all away from her, sparing her and leaving her broken. The murders destroyed something inside her and she spent ten long, silent years in an institution. Catching a glimpse of a news report about another ordinary family slain, Jordan breaks her silence. Now she’s out, and she molds herself—body and mind—into an instrument of justice.

While a young detective pursues the case on his own, Jordan teams up with members of her Victims Support Group, people, like her, damaged by violent crime. They have their own stories of pain, heartache, and vengeance denied. With their help, Jordan will track down the killer before he can ravage any more lives. Her own life depends on it.

If not already installed, first download the Kindle for Samsung app from the Samsung App store (I had to search for it on my phone; it’s separate from the Google Appstore). The book pick is only available from inside the app (on the menu bar on the left); once purchased from inside the app, the book is added to your regular Kindle account and can be read via any of your Kindle devices or apps.

Samsung Book Deals Info

Samsung Book Deals is a book program available exclusively within Kindle for Samsung.

With Samsung Book Deals, you can choose one of four monthly selections for free. New titles are announced at the beginning of each month.

Note:

  • To take advantage of Samsung Book Deals, you must have a Samsung account. To learn more about Samsung accounts, visit https://account.samsung.com.
  • Free downloads from Samsung Book Deals are limited to one per month per Amazon account and do not carry over from previous months.
  • Samsung Book Deals titles can be lent to other Amazon customers for a period of 14 days.
  • Free Samsung Book Deals titles can’t be gifted at purchase.

To download a title:

  1. From the Home screen of Kindle for Samsung, tap the Kindle for Samsung icon.
    Note: If you don’t have a Samsung Account, or you haven’t signed into your Samsung account, you’ll be asked to sign in to download a book. Tap Sign In, and then tap Log In to use an existing Samsung account, or Create New Account to create a new Samsung account.
  2. Tap Samsung Book Deals.
  3. Select the title to view its product detail page.
  4. Tap Buy Now with 1-Click to download the title. After you download the title, it appears on the Home screen.

Additional support for Kindle for Samsung at Amazon.

Note: Any Amazon links go to the post on the blog, rather than directly to Amazon. Just click the link from the blog post itself to go to Amazon from there.

             

Questions from around the house

Jul. 27th, 2017 10:05 am[personal profile] maju
maju: Clean my kitchen (Default)
Found here

Bedroom: what’s your sleep schedule? Go to bed at 9:45 pm, wake up with the alarm at 5:45 am.

Kitchen: favorite comfort food? Probably toast with marmalade accompanied by a cup of tea.

Washroom: showers or baths? bubbles? bath bombs? Showers, always. No soap of any kind, including bubble bath/shower gel/bath bombs/any of that stuff.

Closet: sum up your style in a few words. Super casual. Shorts or long pants with t-shirts and warm shirts, depending on the season.

Parlor: favorite party or board game? I enjoy word games but don't really have a favourite.

Living room: what do you like to do with your family? Chat, play board games.

Dining room: favorite special occasion food? A good rich fruit cake with fondant icing over a layer of marzipan.

Garden: favorite tree? flower? I love crepe myrtles and dogwoods, and one of my favourite flowers is the hydrangea.

Attic: what’s one thing you have a sentimental attachment to and you will never throw away? My 1969 Bernina sewing machine which I left in Australia with one of my daughters.

Library: favorite book genre? It's a toss-up between psychological thriller as written by Ruth Rendell and family drama as written by Joanna Trollope.

Office: if you could have any job in the world, what would it be? Something to do with computers.

Guest room: have you been to a sleepover? if so, when was your first? do you like them? I went to a few when I was around 10 to 12 years old. They were fun. The most recent "sleepover" I went on was when I shared an apartment in Vancouver with my sisters and brothers in law last year for a week; I slept in the living room on a couch so it felt a bit like a sleepover.

Foyer: do you like small gatherings, large parties, or one-on-one meetings? Very small gatherings or one-on-one meetings are equally good.

Pantry: favorite meal to make? That would be none. I don't like cooking. However, anything that can be thrown into the slow cooker is ok with me.

Laundry: favorite and least favorite chore? Doing the washing and hanging it on the line is definitely the least objectionable chore there is and most of the time I enjoy it. All other chores are my least favourite.

Garage: favorite mode of transportation? favorite car? Walking, cycling, or taking public transport are all equal favourites for me. I don't have a favourite car but I definitely prefer manual transmission over automatic.

Panic room: what was the most nerve-wracking experience you’ve had? This question reminded me of a sleepover I went to when I was in my twenties. I was a Bible college student and a group of us (about a dozen I think) went to the farm of one of our fellow students for a weekend. We had to sleep in a shed because there were so many of us. (There were beds - I guess it was shearers' quarters or something.) The hostess was sleeping in her own bedroom in the house with her sisters. After we'd all retired for the night we started hearing strange noises outside, as of somebody possibly drunk bumbling around trying to get in. It was terrifying, but apparently I stayed calmer than everybody else and helped some of the other girls to not completely panic, but some were almost in hysterics. The noise turned out to be our hostess and her sister playing a prank on us, and they were extremely contrite when they discovered how much they had terrified us. (Most of the group were city girls and didn't know what you might encounter on a farm miles from anywhere.)

Powder room: do you wear makeup? if so, what one item can’t you live without? what’s your favorite look? Nope, no makeup. It's about 40 years since I last wore any.
lydamorehouse: (nic & coffee)
 Oops, I forgot that yesterday was "What Are You Reading? Wednesday."  This week has been very weird for me.  But, enough of that.  I will simply move my Wednesday list to today!

I picked up a nonfiction book at the library called Gnosticism and Other Vanished Christianities by Richard Valantasis.  I've been interested in the Gnostics since reading Elaine Pagels, plus this one promised to talk about other wacky early Christian cults.  I'm about halfway through the book and I'm a little disappointed in the surface treatment of everything, but the this is a Belief.net publication, so I probably should have expected as much.

Otherwise, I've been doing my usual yaoi reading. I read After Morning Love by Fujii Mitori, which I actually liked better than most.  I feel like the official translator missed the boat with the title though, I think you'd get a slightly better sense of the plot if it were called, "The Morning After Love," just a very slight change that tells you that this starts with the classic, "Wait, why am I hungover? Who is in my bed?" and leads to romance.

But, I speak almost no Japanese, so, weirdly, no one has hired me to be a translator.

Speaking of Japanese study, I've been terrible about keeping up with it, BUT I started watching "Pandora Hearts" on recommendation and I actually had to pause at one point because I distinctly heard the hero ask, "Kimi wa?"  (Who are you?) Given my native-speaker Japanese teacher's reaction to someone offering 'kimi' as a word for 'you,' (he turned BEET RED and literally could not speak for several seconds. I had to be the one to tell the student, "Um, that's a little rude? You've shocked Tetsuya-sensei."), I thought--okay, either this person is extremely rude or... maybe we're supposed to presume previous intimacy, despite the fact he doesn't recognize this demon-woman?  

"Anata wa?" is even fairly rude for an opening gamut, in my understanding. I feel like a polite person would ask, "Dare desu ka?" (lit: "Who is?') leaving off any rude pronouns.... which are most of them, so there you go.

To be fair, this guy is freaked out, and anime heroes tend to be rude as a rule (at least in shounen). Ichigo, for instance, is not someone you want to learn Japanese from because he starts out using the pronoun "tamee" which is akin to shouting out 'Yo, a$$hole' to people you meet. But 'tamee' ...you hear it a lot in anime speech.  You hardly ever hear 'kimi' spoken (or rather I should say, *I* haven't noticed it as often since I started paying attention) except in love songs, where it seems to be used almost exclusively, because of the intimacy it implies. My gut sense of 'kimi' is that it's not the normal sort of word you'd use WITH A STRANGER.

I had a long talk about this with another friend of mine who is studying and eventually, with the help of Google, we learned that 'kimi' as a you-pronoun can be used by men of a high status when addressing an underling without being considered rude AF.  Apparently, in the right context, 'kimi' implies a strong hierarchy, and, thus, tells us a LOT about this character, in that he can presume that the person he's addressing--a STRANGER--is automatically and significantly below him in the social pecking order.  This fits with the character, in that he is presented as a lordling of some sort, though after this pronoun use, I'm going to have to assume PRINCLING of some sort, or possibly even THE prince of all the land.

Things you can glean listening to a program in a language you barely speak.... kind of fun. 

Not to put too fine a point on it, because I am absolutely NOT one of those anime fans who will lecture a fellow fan that subs (subtitles) are superior in every way to dubs (dubbed)--BUT, I will suggest to anyone who is able to handle /comfortable reading while watching to give subs a try once, if you never have, because I do believe that it is possible to pick up extra content subconsciously.  Obviously, the above is an example that only works for someone like me, who is trying to learn the language.  BUT, previous to this, I FELT things about some characters in "Bleach" based only on my impression of their voices--their inflection, etc.  Without knowing ANYTHING about Japanese, I picked up on the fact that one character had an unusual accent (Gin for those in the know) and that it was likely Significant.  I do not know what they did with Gin's voice actor in English.  Ideally, American/Western voice actor casting would have a native-speaker on staff consulting about regional and class accents. (Please don't pretend we don't have class accents in American English. You KNOW what an upperclass East Coast accent is compared to a dirt-poor Southern drawl...) I know likely don't have a person like that on staff, but in my ideal world they would, because this is the stuff I feel you get by listening to the foreign language often enough, even without ANY study.

That being said, if, right now, you're feeling like I just dissed you because you prefer dubs.....  Honey, no!  I am so happy you're watching anime!!  I would never, ever tell you that you MUST do subs. If dubs is what works for you, yay!  I watched all of Full Metal Alchemist and Black Butler dubbed and J. Michael Tatum (the voice of Sebastian in the English BB) is an amazing dude and I would FIGHT anyone who says he's not an awesome, seductive Sebastian!

Besides, if you've been watching anime long enough, there used to be things you could ONLY get dubbed.  I have no idea what the original Starblazers sounds like, but my anime fan cred is strong because, kids, I was watching that LITERALLY before many of you were born: in 1978.  Deslock was my first anime husbando. 

Wow, this turns into a long screed. My apologies.  Gomen, gomen....
spiralsheep: The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity (ish icons Curiosity Cures Boredom)
- Phrases recently captured in the wild: is it possible to live in an "arid backwater"? I mean, technically, yes, but....

- Stourport Canal drained for repairs (more muddy than arid, methinks).

Stourbridge Canal lock restoration 02-17

Stourbridge Canal drained for lock restoration 02-17

- Reading, books 2017: 74

61. National Poetry Competition Winners' Anthology 2015, 2016, poetry. (?/5)

But have the Ledbury Poetry Competition 2016 first prize winner in the "young person" category instead, which I have heard the author read herself through the magic of video: "Zoe Moore lives in Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA, and attends public high school, where she actively participates in the poetry club. Her interests have included art and art history, dance, theatre, singing, ceramics, Spanish, and of course poetry. Her biggest inspirations in poetry include Sylvia Plath, E E Cummings, and Andrea Gibson. She is grateful for her hometown support and this opportunity to share her thoughts to a worldwide audience." 
 
for the birds, by Zoe Moore

her mother tells her not to eat those cherries because they are for the birds
and she reaches up to touch her hair and feels more feathers than fur
Full text of poem. )
aldersprig: an egyptian sandcat looking out of a terra-cotta pipe (Default)
Twelve: Watch What You Say

The man who might or might not b the Diamond Raven struggled, but he couldn’t seem to do anything about the cord around his neck and, rather than have Raizel tug it tighter, he followed her.  “I have things I should get-” he protested, but she didn’t listen, and then “I shouldn’t leave a candle burning-” and then “someone needs to watch the sacred spot.”

“Someone does,” she agrees.  “But having it be you might be a bit silly.”

“And why would it be silly for it to be me?”  He raised his eyebrows at her in challenge.

read on…
oursin: Illustration from the Kipling story: mongoose on desk with inkwell and papers (mongoose)

While I was away I noticed on, I think, Twitter, which I was scrolling through while waiting at a bus stop/train station/whatever, somebody getting into a froth over somebody deleting their tweets upon mature reflection, and how this was The Death of History.

To which my own reactions were:

a) Archivists have been thinking about the problems posed by the fragility of the digital record for a good couple of decades plus, this is not something no-one has noticed before. (Wasn't the Library of Congress archiving Twitter, and presumably there are some measures against tampering, if so? - hah, I see that there have been problems of processing and it's not actually accessible, or wasn't as at last year.)

b) Quite apart from the dangers of fire, flood and insect or animal depredation to which records in the more traditional forms have been exposed, there has been a fair amount of deliberate curating of the record over the centuries, by deliberate destruction or just careful concealment (whether it's the Foreign Office secret archive or the concealment of Turner's erotic drawings under a misleading file title).

c) While you can delete or destroy a particular record, you cannot always get rid of the information that it did exist - presumably it was other people commenting on the now-deleted tweets or retweeting them that led to the decision to delete them, but that doesn't eradicate the fact of their existence. This may even draw attention to the deleted record: this is why when I was still being an archivist we used to persuade donors not to ask for closures apart from those mandated by Data Protection, because the idea that something is *CLOSED* causes some people's ears to prick up in a supposition that there will be *HIDDEN SECRETS* (this was very, very, seldom the case).

I might also invoke the case that came up in Prince of Tricksters, where Netley Lucas under one of his identities was communicating with different officials and departments, possibly, it is suggested, as a means to confuse his trail: but, due to the growth of bureaucracy, as well as the social networks they belonged to, could also communicate among one another to discover that this was all the same guy.

There is also the phenomenon that I have mentioned to researchers, that yes [organisations of a certain ideological bent] have been very coy about placing their archives anywhere where people might do research in them; BUT the organisations and people they were against kept tabs on their activities, collected their literature, etc.

Also that if person/organisation's own papers do not survive, you can find out a good deal from the surviving records of those they interacted with.

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kshandra: Text: "I should perhaps be disturbed by the MASSIVE NEED I have for approval of strangers on the Internet." (Default)
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