kshandra: illustration of the classic drama masks (Comedy/Tragedy)
2016-12-18 08:11 pm

In which Koosh has Opinions On Dance

[personal profile] murphymom and I went to the Fathom Events screening of The Nutcracker as performed by the Bolshoi Ballet, originally recorded in 2014.



I was surprisingly underwhelmed. )
I will say it wasn't all a letdown. I appreciated the fact that the Nutcracker doll was performed by a different, younger dancer, to make the transformation into the Prince all the more dramatic. I loved the behind-the-scenes footage we got before each act, with the dancers wearing leggings, down vests, etc., to keep their muscles warm before going on (including one person who I swear I saw wearing a Pikachu onesie). And getting to see the building itself was a treat.

In all, it was a good way to spend time with my mother for her birthday...but I think next year I may look for a local live production that doesn't cost the earth.
kshandra: Sinfest character Slick sits at his laptop, poking the keyboard; the words "refresh refresh refresh" hover over his head (5-Minute-Refresh)
2016-11-28 07:33 pm

Rainy days and Mondays...

Scenes from a chat window.

[personal profile] kshandra: I really think the fucks I have to give currently can only be measured in irrational numbers.
[personal profile] gridlore: That good, huh?
[personal profile] kshandra: It's not even that bad a day. It's just the weather, and [beloved relative entering home hospice care], and the fucking election (still), and and and.
[personal profile] gridlore: https://days.to/until/mlb-season-opening-day
[personal profile] kshandra: http://burningman.org/countdown/
[personal profile] gridlore: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8V9TCD0TTtk
[personal profile] kshandra: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wbdWt3UDXhs
kshandra: Cover artwork from Trans Siberian Orchestra's "The Christmas Attic" (Christmas)
2016-11-19 09:11 pm
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Hurrah for the pudding! Hurrah for the Fair!

Home from Dickens with [personal profile] murphymom. She asked me to drive, which meant that we stayed as long as I wanted to. :D

Got there right at opening. Made a beeline for the braiding studio, and there was still no line. Had tea for the first time at Cuthbert's, which was lovely, though the trifle would have benefited from another hour or two to sit and let the pound cake absorb a little more of the moisture. Got to all the shows we wanted to see, plus a few more (videos are all from previous years):







...and the French Postcards Tableaux, but you'll just have to imagine that one on your own. ;-)

Ran into (in no particular order) [tumblr.com profile] chronopunk and his mom, [livejournal.com profile] valiaderekin and her wife, and [livejournal.com profile] rmjwell and his Cubs regalia. (Enjoy that feeling as long as you can, man.)

Wish I could afford to go more than once a season, but I definitely feel like we got our money's worth this year.
kshandra: figurine of a teddybear seated at an office desk, looking at a computer (ComputerBear)
2016-11-17 10:25 am

S-M-R-T

Those of you who have been reading me for a long time will recall earlier posts of mine trying to find what could best be described as "Cliffs Notes for the News" - I know that I'm woefully uninformed, but attempts at cover-to-cover newspaper/newsmagazine reads tend to bounce off my skull.

I appear to have found what I've been looking for.

[personal profile] gritsinmisery linked to theSkimm on her FB shortly before the election. Founded by two women with a background in TV news, it has become as indispensable as morning caffeine for me. This morning alone I've read about a series of suspected arson fires in the South that have burned 80,000 acres and the latest round of airstrikes in Aleppo (Gary Johnson, are you listening?). If the past week has taught me anything, it's how vital it is that ALL of us learn more about the world we inhabit, and I feel like I'm finally making steps in the right direction towards that goal.

I should have shared this earlier in the week, because through the end of today, for every person who signs up for theSkimm through referral links like mine, FEED will donate a meal to a child in need through one of its global giving partners.

Check it out.
kshandra: (Wedding)
2016-05-01 10:49 am
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Istanbul, Update 34 - We promised you photos...

It's going to be at least another week or so before Doug gets them all rotated and annotated properly, but the raw collection is here. Enjoy!
kshandra: jointed teddy bear, standing upright, wearing a faux-leather flying helmet and jacket, goggles, and "silk" scarf (Aviator)
2016-03-13 12:05 pm
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Istanbul, Update 30 - Into the home stretch, now...

I took Friday off from work so [personal profile] gridlore and I could run some travel-related errands during business hours. Our first stop was the travel desk of our local AAA office, where we were able to book a 7-day tourist pass that covers a good 2/3 of the things we wanted to do, including the Big Bus Tour, a hammam visit (Galatasaray, rather than Hurrem Sultan, but that's a minor quibble), a Bosphorus dinner cruise, and admission to both the Hagia Sophia and the Topkapi Palace. We also booked our transportation from the airport to our hotel and a day trip to the Princes' Islands. Anything else we want to do on the trip we can probably leave in the hands of the hotel concierge at this point.

From there, it was up to SFO; I'd found an ad on FB that was offering a "summer pass" for Clear, and we needed to go do our biometric scanning to complete the registration process. It took a while to figure out where we actually needed to be - the Info Desk was less than helpful, and we initially wound up at the TSA Pre-Check office, not realizing (as is apparently true for most folks) that they are separate programs - but once we were there, the process was simple, and the staffer we worked with was great. (As an added bonus, Clear also operates at AT&T Park, and our passes will cover the one Giants game we're going to make it to this year.)

Once we were done with that, we headed over to the ticketing counter for Turkish Airlines; the one thing I hadn't been able to do online was book our seat assignments, and since we were in the building anyway, I figured doing it f2f wasn't going to hurt matters any. We have the same seats for both flights: 7A-B, which don't get great reviews on SeatGuru, but even a bad seat in Business Class will be better than anything in Economy. (And as Doug noted on FB, we live next to a railroad track, so it can't be any worse than that.)

Five weeks. Now is a perfectly good time to panic. ;-)
kshandra: jointed teddy bear, standing upright, wearing a faux-leather flying helmet and jacket, goggles, and "silk" scarf (Aviator)
2015-12-10 10:38 am
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Istanbul, Update 25 - Finding Suleiman

The Süleymaniye Mosque (as featured in our cover photo) has been near the top of our to-see list for as long as we've been planning this trip. But while this may have been the final resting place of Suleiman the Magnificent, it was not his only resting place. Though his body was returned to Constantinople, historians believe that his heart and other internal organs were buried at the site of the battle where he was killed, in a tomb erected on the site where his tent had stood.

And now, there is evidence that the lost tomb of Suleiman has been found. (No, we will not be planning a second trip to Hungary, much to [personal profile] gridlore's disappointment.)

http://www.theguardian.com/science/2015/dec/09/suleiman-the-magnificent-tomb-hungary
kshandra: jointed teddy bear, standing upright, wearing a faux-leather flying helmet and jacket, goggles, and "silk" scarf (Aviator)
2015-11-11 03:36 pm

Istanbul, Update 20 - We're crossing the streams a little today.


Featured wrap: Bon Voyage

As some of you are already aware, I was introduced to Jamberry Nails earlier this year by a dear friend. I'd always been a fan of my awesome friends' awesome manicures, but I gave up trying to maintain my own years ago - I'd spend all the money on having them professionally done, and I'd screw it up before I even got home from the salon (seriously, I dinged two nails beyond recognition once just getting back into my car). But after doing Jamberry's 7-day challenge this spring, I was a convert.

My consultant, GlitterGirl, has generously offered to run a virtual Jamberry party for me on Facebook as a fundraiser for the trip - instead of earning hostess gifts, a portion of the sales from the party will go directly towards the cost of our incidentals while we're abroad. And with holiday shopping just around the corner (how did THAT happen?!), this is a great opportunity to pick up some stocking stuffers or a gift certificate for that hard-to-shop-for friend while raising money for a great cause.

At least, we think it's a great cause. ;-)

The party starts next Monday, and if you're interested, send me a message on Facebook and I'll send you an invitation to the party and a link to a form to fill out for free samples to start your own 7-day challenge. If you're not on FB, but you'd still like to check out what's available, I can get you instructions on how to place your order so I still get the credit for it. And if nail wraps don't interest you at all, the original fundraiser is still open. ;-)
kshandra: jointed teddy bear, standing upright, wearing a faux-leather flying helmet and jacket, goggles, and "silk" scarf (Aviator)
2015-10-10 10:08 am
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Istanbul, Update 10 - The Mehmed II Mystery House.

Today's eye candy/history lesson is Topkapi Palace.

Imperial Gate at Topkapi Palace, Istanbul

After the fall of Constantinople in 1453, Sultan Mehmed II (soon to earn the label "the Conqueror") found the old palace wholly inadequate. It was crumbling, dirty, and falling down in places. He ordered a new palace built to the northeast. The Saray-i Cedid-i Amire (Imperial New Palace) was the primary residence of the Sultans and their huge (dare I say Byzantine?) bureaucracies for 400 years. During the reign of Mahud I, the palace was renamed Topkapusu Sâhil Sarâyı (Cannon Gate Palace by the Sea) after another palace that had been destroyed by fire. The current name simply means Cannon Gate.

The Topkapi was the home to Ottoman rulers until 1856 when the Sultan moved to the more modern (and European) Dolmabahçe Palace. The bulk of the Imperial bureaucracy remained in the Topkapi until 1924, when the new Republic of Turkey made the complex a museum.

As of this writing, roughly $1200 of the matching funds my employer has pledged remain. That's two dozen people contributing $50 each (which also gets you a writing sampler of Doug's work, compiled by two-time Hugo Award winner Chris Garcia). Once those matching funds kick in, we will be at 80% of our goal.

There will NEVER be words to thank you all enough.
kshandra: Animated text: Closing paragraph from the 01/08/11 Special Comment - icon made with http://wigflip.com/minifesto (Default)
2013-08-03 11:42 am
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Accomplishments so far today

  • Ate breakfast (turkey & cheddar on the toast left over from Wed/Thu at Mini Gourmet)
  • Electronically signed the paperwork for ACCC
  • Filed [personal profile] gridlore's disability paperwork
  • Renewed Doug's MedicAlert membership for three years (with thanks to the contributions I've received for expenses) and brought ALL of the information current

Still to do:
  • Take my fucking meds already!
  • Shower
  • Laundry (was supposed to go to [personal profile] murphymom's for this, but I think I may just do one load here to get me through)
  • Stop by work to print out receipt from disability form
  • Hospital; add receipt to chart for his MD to certify the disability claim
  • Stop by Doug's office to pick up his insurance check
  • Meet [livejournal.com profile] plymouth at Hobee's for yarn geeking and dinner

Need to steal Doug's "DONE" stamp icon.
kshandra: A cross-stitch sampler in a gilt frame, plainly stating "FUCK CANCER" (Fuck Cancer)
2013-07-02 08:38 pm

Virtual Garage Sale & Cancer Fundraiser

SF Bay Area costumer Trystan L. Bass was diagnosed with breast cancer late last month, and is currently running a virtual garage sale to raise funds for the inevitable bills that lie ahead. She is also accepting direct donations, and offers a list of resources on, among other things, how not to say the wrong thing when dealing with a serious illness in your social circle.

(crossposted to [community profile] signalboost)
kshandra: California custom license plate reading ♥KOOSH (Koosh Plate)
2013-06-08 12:00 pm
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kshandra: Satellite photo of San Francisco Bay; the Marin Headlands and Oakland are also visible (San Francisco)
2012-06-15 07:17 pm
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SF Bay Area radio has lost a legend.

Condolences to the family and friends of Dennis Netto, a.k.a DENNIS ERECTUS of KOME/San Jose from its "Come Radio" heyday of the 1980s. Don West shares, "Dennis was an original and talented shock jock who pre-dated the notoriety of Howard Stern. Dennis worked briefly in Texas, but San Jose was his home. Even long after he left the station and KOME closed, selling its frequency to KUFX, people in the area still talk of him, and remember his remarkable style."






kshandra: Six hearts in rainbow colors, linked in a star pattern around an infinity symbol (Polyamory)
2011-11-02 09:20 pm

Here, let me angst about something ELSE for a while.

[personal profile] digitalsidhe posted earlier this evening about attending the memorial for Jack Random yesterday, and it appears to have stirred up a lot of emotions in me. Not because I knew Jack - indeed, I'm not sure I'd ever heard his name before my queer friends started posting about his passing.

And that's what did it. I'm upset about my complete inactivity in "freak" circles. Queer, kinky, poly...you name it, I'm a cipher in it. And it isn't about the sex (mostly, anyway, though I'd be lying if I said that part didn't bother me, too) - it's about the connection. The community (and half of my Burner friends are shouting "DRINK!" now). Yes, I have my Invisible Internet Friends, and I love you all, but I don't have anyone who will call me up and say "Hey, wanna go to $EVENT next week/month/whenever?"

I know, I know. If I did, 90% of the time the answer would would be "Sorry, can't afford it." But I'd like the opportunity to be disappointed that I won't get to do something, as opposed to being disappointed that I didn't even know the something existed until someone Tweets about it from the audience (which happened over the weekend).

And no, the answer isn't "So go do something on your own!" Especially not right now, when the introversion is spiraling into tighter and tighter circles.

All comments screened, and I make no guarantees that I'll be able to answer them in a timely fashion, if at all. Also, virtual hugs are going to rub me the wrong way - a symptom of the problem, if you will - so please, don't.
kshandra: long-haired woman silhouetted against a stormy sky (Bad)
2011-11-01 12:44 pm

Things have really been bad lately.

I've been posting about it on my Tumblr, instead of here, because it started with a round of blegging, and y'all have seen enough of that from me in the past decade. But what I thought was going to be a momentary obstacle has become a rapid descent into hell, so I should bring folks up to speed.

A reluctant request for assistance

Thanks, and an update

An update to the update

I would really like to know what it feels like NOT to live in abject terror.

(Comments disabled because I can feel myself going into shutdown mode, and I need what spoons I have to get through my workday.)
kshandra: long-haired woman silhouetted against a stormy sky (Bad)
2011-09-29 02:44 pm

I hope my sarcasm font is working...

...'cause I'm gonna need it to tell you just how AWESOME life is right now. :-P

I am phenomenally broken today, exacerbated by the fact that it was too fething hot in the apartment to even think about sleeping until 0115 this morning; I've actually lost count of the number of times I've teared up and/or flat-out started crying. (Doctor's appointment is already booked. I've been non-compliant on all my meds, brain and body, since before Worldcon, and I already knew that I needed to get back on the horse. Will be discussing an embryonic workout plan, as well; if [personal profile] gridlore and I are going to London in 2014, I have three years to lose 200lbs, because I'd like to survive the trip there and back.)

I've got a W101 LAN party to look forward to tomorrow night...and then Paul's memorial service the next morning, so I'm not going to get to ride that high for as long as I would have liked.

I think I'm spending large portions of the rest of the weekend reblogging MLP macros on Tumblr.

I'm leaving comments enabled, but please don't try to engage me in discussion right now. The metaphorical silverware drawer is empty.
kshandra: Keith Olbermann, pointing at the camera; caption: "I see you, you dirty fangirl" (Keith - Dirty Fangirl)
2011-07-24 11:22 pm

Hey - at least it isn't more Floating City spam.

KO - Suit Kink

Multi-fandom Suit & Uniform Kink Meme
All fandoms, characters, pairings, and ratings
Find the prompts here
kshandra: "80's Child" in hot pink on black background (80s Child)
2011-07-10 01:47 pm
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We now return to our regularly scheduled Floating City spam, already in progress.

Thomas Dolby was the guest on Thursday's episode of CNET's Buzz Out Loud podcast, talking about A Map of the Floating City.

http://www.cnet.com/8301-19709_1-20077644-10/buzz-out-loud-1505-thomas-dolby-blinds-us-with-genius-podcast/

The relevant bit runs from about 12:45-19:26, if you're in a hurry.

And now, the shameless begging. ;-) There's been a recent recalibration of the scoring in-game, accounting for the people who sign up and never log in again, and my tribe has gone from first to fourth in the rankings. As you might guess, this has been a little disheartening.

HOWEVER.

For the next 7 days the Floating City G.O.Ds are temporarily DOUBLING the rewards we get every time someone we invite joins the game. So if I haven't worn you down yet, and you've been thinking about checking it out, please do so now!
kshandra: "80's Child" in hot pink on black background (80s Child)
2011-07-05 11:46 pm
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Oh. My. God.

How did I not know about this before now?!

http://www.onestepbeyondreunion.com/

(Link courtesy of one of my Floating City tribemates. </not exactly shameless plug>)