3 of 5 stars
This book constituted a break from my usual diet of SF and fantasy. I've never heard any of Amanda Palmer's music, or participated in her Kickstarters and Patreon, but I have followed her blog for years, after meeting her via Neil Gaiman (to whom she's married). This is a combination of a self-help book, an explanation of how she manages her free-for-all Internet business and musical presence, a discussion of Life and Art, and a memoir. The writing style is very freewheeling and stream-of-consciousness, so if you don't like that sort of thing, be warned.
Ignoring the slightly dodgy use of photographic terms, it occurs to me that we're already living in a world where a large percentage of photographers have no idea what a negative is...
Five years later, and this is the state of the art:
Which is, I totally admit, a very neat tech demo. But it's not "there" yet. The FOV is too small, and you can see the real world through it. Although, to be fair, most of the time the real world isn't _that_ distracting, you're definitely not going to be able to "see Victorian gas lamps in place of normal lights" or "have a real Coke can that you want to turn into an AR Pepsi can by drawing a Pepsi logo over the Coke logo".
Ah well, I'll make a note to come back in five years time and see where we are then!
A household that I'm friends with got news that their landlord is kicking them out with 60 days notice. Most of them have lived in the house for 19ish years? There is some flailing going on there. I took them out to dinner and it was nice to see them in the midst of their now imminent move and mine on Tuesday.
Did a walk around in my neighborhood. I am going to miss this place. I was finally able to articulate to a friend that while I'm sick of this area and how precious (and expensive) it's gotten, I've been squeezed out of the job market here and it sucks. And my destination wasn't on my radar as a spot to move to. Maybe after I get a cat again it won't suck?
Two sleeps left. I pack the truck tomorrow afternoon.
Yesterday was tiring, but for a much more pleasant reason. I took Nicholas to see My First Ballet: Cinderella at the Peacock Theatre, and for icecream at Ruby Violet afterward. We walked to Ruby Violet through pouring rain with bright new umbrellas, and had the whole shop to ourselves. By the time we'd finished eating it was bright and sunny for the return walk to Kings Cross. This morning I was thankfully free of hangover symptoms, but did (need to) spend the morning in bed again. (Reading fanfic and re-reading All Systems Red; there are worse ways to spend a Sunday morning.)
The shiny new phone runs Pokemon Go and on Friday I let Charles talk me into installing it and going for a daily walk with him. The first evening, we passed the charity shop and saw the biggest Angry Bird toy I have ever seen. Charles bought it at opening time the next morning. Today our walk took us past the noticeboard in the park - where someone had hung my lost keys! About five minutes later, we met one of the people who'd put them there, who said they'd found them about 5 minutes after I'd gone home last week from grumpily trawling the park! I thanked them profusely and asked them to pass it on.
Nicholas says he wants to be called Nick rather than Nico, and I'm slipping up far too often, but at least making sure other adults taking care of him are made aware, and giving him some standard reminder phrases to use on me and others. (It's really not my preferred version of his name, but it's his name not mine, so I need to get over that.)
School has finished for the summer, and in less than two weeks we will be in Helsinki! I have so much to do between now and then ...
She described the show as a sequel to The Nutcracker but also a crossover with War and Peace, and a musical. A "wonderful spectacle," in fact. I have to admit that we were basically morbidly curious, and it would get us inside those gorgeously ornate doors.
Anyway, we made it two songs in. The thing was in Ukrainian so we don't know what it was about but I don't think it would have made a lot of sense even if we did understand the language. It was kind of embarrassing to listen to.
But! It meant that we got to sneak out and take unobstructed photos of the glory that is the Odessa Opera House, and that was worth the ticket price alone. I hope you appreciate how hard it was to narrow these down. They don't half capture the actual, real spectacle that is this building, but I've given it my best.
( pretty! )
The wonderful Miss Conduct at the Boston Globe answered a letter about a pair of sisters, one of whom is dating a dude who has a Nazi flag in his room. She nailed it:
“…the thing about Nazis is, they are a great place to draw the line…”
Let me add a script:
“Sister, your fucking boyfriend has a fucking Nazi flag in his fucking bedroom. What the fuck are you doing? YOU ARE DATING A LITERAL NAZI. LOOK AT YOUR LIFE!!!! WHAT THE FUCK!!!! GET RIGHT WITH THE LORD AND YOURSELF AND ALL THAT IS GOOD AND TRUE AND DUMP THIS NAZI ASSHOLE!!!”
STOP DATING NAZIS, EVERYONE, OKAY, COOL, GOOD TALK, THANK YOU.
P.S. Stop dating people with Confederate paraphernalia, too. SAME DIFFERENCE, Y’ALL.
It had a border of poppies and cornflowers and space for my own text in the middle.
But I can't decide what words to put in the centre. It can't be too lengthy, a dozen words at most, and fewer might be better.
I'm hunting for something that says we don't need loads of possessions to be happy; that a garden is a great source of contentment; that life is to be enjoyed while you have it and maybe something ecological as well.
Now, clearly one can't manage all of that....
Random ideas have included:
Gardeners live longer
To be content is the key to happiness
We only have one world, treat it gently
Toss ideas at me. Anything that sounds good.
...that I did work today, which is notable, and now it is noted.
The work consisted of digging three holes, which isn't as easy as you might think, those of you who unaccountably do not live on two acres of glacial moraine, or at the very least two acres of shale thinly covered with what we'll call soil.
Why, you ask, was I moved to do work on a fine Maine morning when I ought to have been, um, writing?
Well, I'm glad you asked that question. Alert readers will recall that several days ago I acquired, in defiance of both the Lawn Guy's Assistant, and the neighbor's road-crossing, if not actually free-ranging chickens, plants for the Cat Garden, which has, through the direct intervention of said Forces of Nature more or less become a Weed Garden.
It had been hot and humid the last few days, not at all the sort of weather to encourage a sedentary and overweight author of more than middle years to go outside and dig holes in the garden. So, I left the plants, in their pots, in approximately the locations I had chosen for their eventual homes. I watered them each day, but they were looking sort of droopy and sad by this morning, so it was just very fortunate that today was gorgeously blue, and breezy, and dry, and of a temperature that someone who lives in Maine would find reasonable for July.
So! Three holes. Not exactly in the locations previously chosen -- did I mention we live on shale? Also there are trees, and trees have roots. Lots of roots. No, really; look it up.
In between the rocks and roots, then -- three holes.
One hole for the Cherry Pops Bee Balm which replaces the Murdered Bee Balm of yesteryear. Bee balm attracts butterflies, hummingbirds, and, well, bees. This particular sort claims to be deer and mildew resistant.
One hole for the Wishing Well Plantain Lily, aka Hosta Wishing Well. This plant attracts hummingbirds and has a mounding habit, so I envision a Mountain of Hosta in my future.
The third and final hole -- actually the first dug -- was for the White Frost Hemerocallis -- aka a day lily with a curly yellow trumpet not only bigger than my head, but damn' near bigger than Trooper. It is two feet high. Who can say no to a two-foot-high day lily that has flowers the size of a coon cat? It's big enough to be sentient. Indeed, I have some hope that it will be writing next year's book.
I will also mention here that I have received and have been testing various bug repellents. It is in my mind to go with the least application that is still effective. To that end, I began today with the bug repellent bracelet, fully expecting that I would need to come inside and upgrade.
In this, I was disappointed. I did hear one rather insistent buzz, but closer inspection revealed the author to be a hummingbird, who was apparently under the impression that he was paying me for these plantings, and I could pick the pace up a bit, if I didn't mind. Or, given hummingbirds, even if I did mind.
So, having now made the record complete, I believe I'll. . .
. . .do some work.
Recently Finished: Backdated reviews from the UK trip, as follows
The Lawrence Browne Affair by Cat Sebastian
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Apparently I was on a roll with 'accidentally reading book two before book one of a series'. I liked this one! Although without the context of book 1 I had some trouble figuring out WHY a slum-born swindler was a competent secretary, I liked it a lot. I liked that the give-and-take came from both directions (Georgie's decision to read up on electricity was a nice touch), and I'm a fan of the cast of supporting characters - Lawrence's female inventions buddy especially.
The Soldier's Scoundrel by Cat Sebastian
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
I liked this one a lot less than The Lawrence Browne Affair. It just seemed... meh. Meh in world-building, and in character-building. I think there's only so many 'scoundrel goes straight for love' romances one can read in a row, and I was coming to Cat Sebastian off the back of KJ Charles' An Unnatural Vice.
Mother of Souls by Heather Rose Jones
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This was *interesting*. This book is definitely marking a genre-stamp for the series, moving it more firmly into historical-fantasy and away from romance. Which, given I was getting sick of neatly parcelled romance novels, is a good thing to me. I enjoyed both of the new lead women characters, and the returning ensemble cast. It was particularly rewarding to see Anna the apprentice develop more as a character. The test to Margerit's worldview & philosophy of the mysteries via Serafina was great, as was the increase in ensemble cast diversity.
I'm just a bit surprised - I thought this was 3 in a trilogy, but it's clearly not a final-in-the-series book. This is, overall, a GOOD surprise. I have high hopes! Especially for Margerit's niece - I devoutly hope she's our next heroine.
Frenchman's Creek by Daphne du Maurier
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I've never read any Du Maurier, and I'm told this is atypical - the only one of her works she claimed as a romance at all. It was a bit weird to read, like, say, if you'd read LOTR *after* reading Raymond E Feist. Suddenly I could see all these influences on the queer histrom I've been reading - not only faithfully adapted elements but *deliberately departed from* ones. Like. If this was written by one of the m/m histrom crowd now, there would be a *lot* deeper interrogation of the class issues in the novel. (Class here is used primarily as a _uniting_ factor, something to bring its heroine together with her Manic Pixie Pirate Baron, and not really interrogated at all.) Fisherman's Creek is definitely better literature, but less self-aware.
Good things: it's not in the slightest HEA. Which I liked - I was surfeited on HEA by the time I got to this one, and I can't see how a HEA would have *worked* here (unless you rewrote it as m/m. In which case they run away to sea together).
Also, Our Hero is a Manic Pixie Pirate Baron. That part seemed fairly self-aware: burned out woman gets to meet an inspiring rebel who Changes Her Life and recharges her to go back to her real world, much as has happened to dudes in literature forever.
To review later: Georgette Heyer, Tanya Huff, a book about beds, the latest Archer magazine issue, and LM Montgomery's autobiography.
Up Next: I need to attack Carolyne Larrington's 'Brothers and Sisters in Medieval Literature'
Music notes: well I saw Midnight Oil, asyouknowBob. And I bought Alan Doyle's first solo album, Boy on Bridge. Today I noticed that the song 'Testify', which sounds like country-gospel, is actually a song about a dude escaping prison by staging a river immersion baptism. This pleases me.
I'm a 33 year old Scottish woman, trying to get my journal groove back. I'm a mum of three boys from teen to newborn, and work in healthcare but (thankfully) I'm on maternity leave just now. I mainly write about daily life, the struggles and highlights of attempting to adult and parent and be healthy as a highly strung, stressed over-thinker who doesn't like herself most of the time.
Wow, I sound fun. Should I mention that there will be wine, gin and chocolate?
I was obsessed with my Livejournal back in the day - I started it back in 2003 and even though I've only dipped in and out of it in recent years, writing is still very much how I make sense of my life and my mind. That's why I'm trying to reignite that obsession I once had...though it's difficult with increasing grown up responsibilities and shrinking time of my own to put
I swear and I like to write no-holds-barred. I'm very liberal and support choice - be that choice of who you love, choice over your reproductive options, or just the freedom to chose what you're going to watch on telly tonight. I'm doing my Masters in weight management so I try to live healthily through fitness (like dancing and weight training, albeit on a very beginner level) and healthy eating, but more often than not find myself alone amongst the crumbs at the bottom of a packet of biscuits. I'm book obsessed (mainly literary fiction and never fantasy, chick-lit, or much sci-fi), love a good tv series (Mr Robot, Stranger Things, The Handmaid's Tale, OITNB, Top of the Lake and Homeland have been recent highlights), and sometimes I even get out to see friends. Some or none of this may come out in my writing.
Along with a lack of time, I guess part of why I've lost touch with my journal has been my shrinking friends list. It's hard to make time to update when it feels increasingly like you're just shouting into a void. So I'd love it if anyone out there who is in a similar place in life or who is into similar things would like to take a punt on my journal. I wont promise a very active journal but I am going to try, and I'm also going to try and be a good friend in return.
It's a good job I've been with my husband for ten years, because I'd suck at filling out a dating profile. Feel free to swipe left (or is it right...? I'm not on Tinder).
It’s movie trailer season!
1. Thor: Ragnarok – I love the banter between Thor and Hulk/Banner. Everything I’ve seen about this movie looks like fun.
2. Star Trek: Discovery – I’m intrigued enough to want to see more, and it will be nice to have some new television-style Star Trek. We don’t have CBS All Access, but I’m sure it will be available on Blu-ray eventually.
3. Ready Player One – I know a lot of people loved this one, but for some reason, the book just didn’t work for me, and the trailer seems to be following suit. The trailer looks pretty, but it doesn’t grab me.
4. Justice League – I don’t know. DC’s cinematic universe has let me down again and again…but then they did Wonder Woman, and I started to hope again. This looks like it could be fun. Or it could be a mess. I’m withholding judgement for the moment.
Which ones, if any, are you looking forward to?
Mirrored from Jim C. Hines.