Fitbit goal check

Oct. 15th, 2017 10:39 pm


Oct. 15th, 2017 12:15 pm
kindkit: A late-Victorian futuristic zeppelin. (Airship)
[personal profile] kindkit
This weekend I've binge-watched Mindhunter, the new Netflix series about the FBI's Behavioral Science Unit in the late 1970s, as it began developing the modern practice of profiling by interviewing incarcerated serial killers (and even invented the term "serial killer").

Some thoughts under the cut )

goodbye and good luck

Oct. 14th, 2017 11:05 am
kindkit: Sailing ship at sea. (Fandomless: Blue ship)
[personal profile] kindkit
The kitty has gone to the shelter. It ended up being a bit of a production. Cut for emotional distress, both the cat's and mine )

unexpected cat

Oct. 14th, 2017 07:17 am
kindkit: A late-Victorian futuristic zeppelin. (Airship)
[personal profile] kindkit
I currently have a cat clawing gently at my rug and playing with a vitamin bottle. He showed up outside my window at 6:30 this morning, meowing urgently, and ran inside like a shot when I opened the door. I don't think he's just a curious outdoor cat, because I've tried to let him back out and he won't go, plus he's pretty distressed. And he's not feral, because he's clean and not starving--though I gave him some water and a little tuna and he gobbled up both--and because he clearly likes human attention.

No collar, and he's un-neutered, which doesn't speak well for his people.

But anyway, I'm biding my time until 9 am when the animal shelter opens, and hoping he doesn't have fleas that will get into the carpet. Also hoping that he doesn't spray and won't need to go potty. I've made him a box lined with torn paper but I don't know if he'll accept that as a temporary litterbox.

There's also a cardboard box he's going to have to go into so I can take him to the shelter. I put his plate of tuna inside but so far he won't go in. I might have to grab him with a towel.

And now he's resumed prowling around and meowing at me for help, help, help. Be patient, guy, and I'll take you to where your people can, hopefully, find you.

bzuh? and also, may I follow you?

Oct. 12th, 2017 06:08 pm
kindkit: Eleventh Doctor looking through magnifying glass, text: "curioser and curioser." (Doctor Who: curioser)
[personal profile] kindkit
When I checked my Facebook this afternoon I was hoping for supportive reactions to having come out as trans, and braced for really ugly ones. The one possibility I hadn't prepared for was . . . no reaction whatsoever. Apart from one person yesterday, no one has commented or reacted to my post at all.

I spent some time puzzling this through. Is being trans so unremarkable now? (Almost certainly not.) Do all my Facebook friends actually have me blocked? (Also seems unlikely.)

The most likely explanation, I have decided, is the really fucking annoying way Facebook arranges the posts on a person's feed--not chronologically, unless you specifically request it (and then it only lasts for one session), but by "most important" i.e. most liked/commented on. This is why there's always plenty of clickbaity crap at the top of one's feed. And it means that people with long Facebook friends lists can easily miss a little post like mine. #facebookishorrible #doesthismeanihavetocomeoutagain?

Speaking of annoying social media, I've started using Tumblr and Twitter again. They're less annoying on a phone, somehow. So if you have a Tumblr or Twitter, feel free to drop me a comment here with your user name on that platform.

I'm gavestonsfrolic on Tumblr and t0bacc04ndb0ys on Twitter, where so far I have never actually tweeted, just followed people. (Paul McDermott has a Twitter! I was extremely surprised.)


Oct. 11th, 2017 05:16 pm
kindkit: Images of Mycroft's tie, eyes, and cane. (Sherlock: Mycroft is proper)
[personal profile] kindkit
Some years ago, on another National Coming Out Day, I came out as trans to all my online friends. Today I just came out to everyone I know on Facebook, including some members of my family. (I don't really have any close family left--nobody I felt I needed to tell in person.)

It was time, but I am really nervous. I have almost no experience of coming out to people who know me in person, plus I have a friend who's said TERF-y things and I have no idea how my extended family are going to react.

Well, anyway, it's done now. I may never dare to look at my Facebook page again.
kaberett: Clyde the tortoise from Elementary, crawling across a map, with a red tape cross on his back. (elementary-emergency-clyde)
[personal profile] kaberett
Hi, I'm Alex, my pronouns are they, I have hilarious boardgame-related trauma; I'm going to want five minutes to read the rules in silence before we start; and if I ask a question about gameplay that isn't addressed to you by name and you're not [personal profile] me_and, please pretend I didn't say anything.

As I periodically mention, mostly whenever I make notable progress of any kind, for a variety of hilarious reasons I find the vast majority of boardgames intensely stressful, and this gets worse the less I know the people I'm playing with. Like I said in my previous post, over the past two years I've gone from "cannot even start to play a game I've had long-term interest in, in my own home, with my partner, who I trust, with no-one else present, without bursting into tears twice just reading the rules" to "getting a bit of an adrenaline kick when I start my second new game of an afternoon with strangers, in a pub, when I was already primed for social anxiety for reasons that do not need exploring at this juncture".

Read more... )

ten good things

Oct. 10th, 2017 03:51 pm
kaberett: Overlaid Mars & Venus symbols, with Swiss Army knife tools at other positions around the central circle. (Default)
[personal profile] kaberett
1. Yesterday afternoon, at 4.30pm, I sent off the latest draft of the current paper to my co-authors in advance of our meeting on Tuesday. I had been working at it steadily, in small chunks every day. At no point did I stay up past midnight working on it. It isn't perfect, partly because it can never be and partly because most of the outstanding stuff relies on getting input from a co-author who's been avoiding my e-mails since April; I'm very pleased with myself for maintaining sensible sleep cycles, and for sending it off "unfinished", because I don't think there is actually much to gain from me carefully polishing the presentation and formatting of an appendix that is not yet complete.

2. The casserole my mother bought me (I think when I started the PhD) is currently full of apples I brought home from my parents' on Saturday evening; I've done about half the bag, and everything smells correct. (It's James Grieve; they're mostly not available commercially, but they're what I grew up with, and I'm always faintly disappointed by apples that aren't them. So: I gathered up a quantity of them, and I'll gather up a quantity more when I go for dinner tomorrow, and I'll jar them, and I'll have enough to put on yoghurt and in crumble and in cake for the next year, I hope.)

3. Passing a pound-a-bowl market earlier today, it transpired that the cardboard crates of two-or-so kilos of blueberries really were one quid each. So I got one of those (I was not going to buy more, to get home on public transport), and I need to decide how many to freeze and whether o jam any and if I want to make clafoutis happen, and so on and so forth. This is a lovely problem to have.

4. Shortly afterwards, while poking around charity shops looking for yet more tablecloths (pace the Graun), on my way home from a hospital appointment that was uninspiring but unproblematic, I found a pasta maker for fifteen quid. Nobody I asked said it was a bad idea quickly enough, and that's how I ended up heading home on public transport with a lap full of pasta machine and two kilos of blueberries. "...", said a friend. "How does this stuff even happen to you so much" "I really don't know how you live like this" "But well done" -- which I will take. (This also, conveniently, provides me with My Next Cooking Goal. I think I probably don't care about the spaghetti attachment but I am eyeing up the ravioli one...)

5. I am sitting in the corner of my sofa, facing the French windows, looking out on the grass and the sunshine. (I love this house.)

6. I am now, after today's adventures in public transport, most of the way through CN Lester's book Trans Like Me. I keep crying over it in public. I have been earwormed with a song off Come Home, Not Again (and have just put it on: I'm used to breaking - but not this time/Of all the things you've taken, I'm not giving me from mine/I know I'm better lonely but alive).

7. On which tangentially-related topic, I recently got my act together to actually listen to Jesus & His Judgemental Father's latest, It Might Get Better, and I just absolutely adore the lyric my breakfast is an existential crisis. And I have a whole pile of books to curl up and wallow in, which I'm very much looking forward to -- Provenance, which I haven't yet had brain for, and the new Max Gladstone, and the new Nnedi Okorafor along with some of her back catalogue, and all the Kai Ashante Wilson I just acquired, and...

8. Board games! On Sunday I went to a board game social being run by my BSL-teacher-now-friend (having been a longstanding friend of A's)! I negotiated social anxiety in the run-up! I played two new-to-me games, with one person in the group each time that I didn't previously know, and it... worked? I didn't cry? I panicked a bit at the start of the second one but actually it was okay? I did the thing? I won one of them? I... am really, really proud of myself. I am so aware of how much progress this is: eighteen months ago, or thereabouts, I finally finally managed to persuade myself to sit down with a rulebook and an Adam in our living room and have a go at playing Thud!, which I'd wanted to basically since I saw it being play-tested at a Discworld convention. I think I ended up crying twice just reading the rulebook, while A was in the kitchen carefully giving me space to have a panic? I ended up crying a bunch more over the course of our couple of experimental collaborative games? ... I just played two new-to-me games with strangers, on no more prep than breezily informing people that I have hilarious boardgame-related trauma, would want to spend five minutes anxiously reading the rules in silence before starting, and that if I asked a question about game mechanic and it wasn't addressed to you by name then pretend I didn't say anything and let A answer. I... am so pleased with myself.

9. ... slipper socks. I sort of resent that I like them so much, and they are the precise opposite of what the podiatrists I was seeing wanted me to do for wearing around the house, but fundamentally I really hate slippers and would by defaul be barefoot but also my feet get really cold really quickly. So now I own two pairs of ridiculous slipper socks, and I wear other socks underneath and slouch around in them, and I spend much less time with my feet painfully cold?

10. ... and on Thursday I'm heading down to Brighton for The October Ritual, an aquarium trip, and Terre á Terre, which I've been curious about for a while.

There is lots that is good that is going on. I'm spending the weekend in Cornwall (well, driving to and from -- a lightning visit is To Be Made), and while there will be Wrangling To Be Done I am also, very much, looking forward to going (however briefly) home.

Fitbit goal check

Oct. 8th, 2017 11:14 pm

Yuletide comes but once a year

Oct. 8th, 2017 09:17 pm
naraht: (other-Yuletide squee)
[personal profile] naraht
This is probably the right time to mention that I'm not signing up for Yuletide this year.

I've been doing Yuletide since 2006, with the only gap being in 2007 when I was busy submitting my thesis (and even that year, somebody wrote me an NYR, so I feel that I participated in spirit). My love for Yuletide is, in theory, undimmed. But.

Work has been utterly mad recently, and is likely to stay that way until mid-November at least. More importantly, my love for Yuri!!! on Ice is still flaring, and I seem to be in the middle of a fic that's likely to be 25k+ when it's finished. (I've just posted chapter 2, go and read!) I am absolutely positively not letting anything get in the way of finishing this fic, including Yuletide. It needs to be finished by Christmas, ideally by the end of November, and without a doubt by the time that the 2018 Olympics actually happen.

Finally, I have to admit that I feel a little relieved at the notion of flying home for my Christmas holidays this year with absolutely nothing hanging over my head, not even a Yuletide story to be posted.

I'll be cheering all of you on; I'll be reading and bookmarking letters; I'll definitely hang out in chat from mid-December on; and if the fates align, I'll try to pick up a treat or two. But as for the rest of it... maybe next year. Alas.

space painting is going well though

Oct. 8th, 2017 08:28 pm
frith_in_thorns: A deep and profound sorryness is being experienced. (W359 Sorryness)
[personal profile] frith_in_thorns
I went and signed up for the Wolf 359 Big Bang. Also for Small Fandom Big Bang, with Wolf 359. They're due sequentially, so this should be fine in terms of writing time.

Although, now the art claiming post for W359 has been up for most of today and mine is one of only a handful left that hasn't been chosen. I NEED TO STOP LOOKING AT THIS AND STRESSING OUT.

(Yes gen lady-centric hurt/comfort is quite niche, this is not really a surprise, I have been extremely spoiled by SGA and White Collar fandoms.)

(If I want a readership I should be writing back-on-Earth AUs or Kepcobi. I only have myself to blame *gg*)

Then and now

Oct. 8th, 2017 07:39 pm
glyn: (lucy)
[personal profile] glyn
[Cold open]
Last Saturday, I plodded along several miles of Thames path to find one specific building.

Hambleden Mill, past and present )

Dear Yuletide Writer

Oct. 8th, 2017 01:22 am
vass: cover of album "I want a hippopotamus for Christmas" (Yuletide Hippopotamus)
[personal profile] vass
This is a placeholder. It will become an actual letter in the next two days. First of all, sorry it wasn't actually the next two days.

Second, thank you for writing for me. I hope you have a good Yuletide.

General likes: queer and trans people, mutual respect, kindness, competence, people who are jerks but not THAT much of a jerk, people working together, people who get other, kissing, hugging, co-sleeping, good worldbuilding, infodumps, humour, robots, dinosaurs, computers, AI, spaceships, cats. Gen is fine, shipping is also fine. Experimental formats and/or interactive fiction are fine if that's something you're interested in doing.

Do Not Wants: animal harm, rape/noncon, underage, misgendering, 'curing' the asexual or aromantic characters, ableism.

The Murderbot Diaries - Martha Wells
I just really love Murderbot, and if you nominated this I'm guessing you do too. Here are some general ideas, but please don't feel limited to them. What sort of books/movies/tv shows would make a Murderbot have to sleep with the lights on? Or need to argue with people on the net about them? Murderbot in fandom. (This seems like a fandom that would lend itself to experimental formats. And also like a fandom that didn't need that fourth wall anyway.) Murderbot writes fic. Murderbot's first OTP. Murderbot takes part in a seasonal fanfic exchange? (Please stick with Murderbot's choice of pronouns, and don't furnish it with a sexuality or romantic attraction or desire to be "more human." Thank you.)

Machineries of Empire
This year I requested Mikodez and Istradez and Zehun, and I'm interested in the family dynamics (biological and found) between Mikodez and Istradez, and Mikodez and Zehun, and how weirdly touchingly domestic and sweet they get while deeply complicit in and being both corrupted by and damaged by a thoroughly evil system, oh and also facing assassination attempts all the time; and Mikodez's position as someone trying to hold the line and restrain his hexarch peers from making things worse even while he's unable to make things better. So I guess I'm saying I'm open to angst or fluff for this fandom.

spoilers )

Riot Nrrd

If you offered to write this, you're awesome, and probably in a very small minority of people who offered it. :D I love this comic, it's one of those finished or permanently-on-hiatus comics where the characters live on in my brain and I keep wondering how they're doing or what they think of insert-current-event-here (see also Waiting For Bob, Jake The Rake, Dykes To Watch Out For...)

So what I would love most of all is some futurefic featuring Wren, Maria, Nhi, Samantha, or any other Riot Nrrd characters you feel like writing about. What new fandoms are they in? How did their studies go? What are they doing now? Are they okay? How are they coping with 2017? (Or if you want to go AU and put them in a happier timeline where current political events did not happen, I am cool with that too!)

Suradanna and the Sea

I read this one after Yuletide nomination closed, and went "darn, I would have liked to nominate that," then was delighted to find that someone else had nominated it.

I'm particularly interested in what happened after that. Especially for the Captain. What does she do with her life after that? And just generally in how their lives intertwine and about being the only people left who have that shared history. And a shared future, whether they stay together or not (do they end up iiiin spaaaaaace?) This is another fandom that might work with experimental formatting, I think -- like primary source history through the ages.

In conclusion, thank you again and I hope Yuletide goes well for you.

Google Translate

Oct. 7th, 2017 07:04 am
vass: Jon Stewart reading a dictionary (books)
[personal profile] vass
I saw this tweet about how if you translate the sentences "He is a babysitter. She is a doctor." from English into Turkish (a language with no third person gendered pronouns) you get "She is a babysitter. He is a doctor." The algorithm made a sexist assumption as to which English third person pronoun would apply.

So I tested it for myself, and yep. (To be clear, I wasn't doubting the OP's veracity, but Google's search engine gives different results to different people, so I wouldn't be surprised if its translator did too.) So I remembered [personal profile] yhlee mentioning that Korean doesn't use gendered third person pronouns either. I gave it a try. "He is a babysitter. She is a doctor." Still accurate.

I tried English -> Turkish -> Korean -> English. Sexist again. I tried English -> Korean -> Turkish -> English. Also sexist. Which is weird, that it happened both ways. If the Turkish algorithm's the problem, I would have expected running it through Korean to rinse out the assumptions. I guess the algorithm is both smarter and stupider than I thought.

With the help of Wikipedia's page on third-person pronouns I selected Finnish for further experimentation. "She is a nanny. She is a doctor. (But I'm glad Finnish Google knows women can be doctors even if it hasn't learned that men can be childcare workers yet.)

So, Finnish Google Translate vs Google Translate! Fight!
English -> Finnish -> Turkish -> English: "She's a nanny. He is a doctor."
English -> Turkish -> Finnish -> English: "She is a nanny. She is a doctor."

According to the same Wikipedia page, in Korean you can say 그녀 or 그 if you need to differentiate between male or female for translation or creative writing purposes. I went back and checked, and yep, that's what Korean Google is doing, and is why it's not introducing errors like Turkish and Finnish do.

Along the way I got bored of "He is a babysitter. She is a doctor." and added a third person plural.

And then something beautiful happened. If you run "He is a babysitter. She is a doctor. Together they fight crime" through Google Translate English -> Korean -> Turkish -> English, you get the best Babelfish I've seen in years:

"She is a babysitter. He is a doctor. They commit crimes together."

Charles is 11

Oct. 6th, 2017 07:56 am
rmc28: (rmcf+fcdf)
[personal profile] rmc28
He very kindly waited until 7am to wake me up to open presents, which for reasons were stored in his brother's room. He is now assembling toys in the centre of a drift of packaging, while Nick builds an unbirthday Lego set on his bed and I catch up on email / dreamwidth on my phone. School has a teacher training day & I have the day off work and am taking both children to see my mother for the long weekend  (at Charles's request).

Dear yuletide author:

Oct. 5th, 2017 10:01 pm
raven: (misc - cherry)
[personal profile] raven
Dear Yuletide author,

Hi! I'm [ profile] singlecrow on the AO3. Thank you for writing for me. First up, please feel free to ignore everything in this letter if you'd rather. I want you to have a good time writing the story you want to write, and if you have that already in mind I'm excited to read it. If it helps you, though, here are some things about what I like:

Generally, I like: loving friendships, snappy dialogue, people being competent at what they do.

Generally I don't like PWPs (which isn't to say I don't like sex in stories! I do, a lot, but with other things) and I don't like men in positions of power over women, particularly in a sexual context but generally.

I don't have any triggers or squicks. If you want to write a story with loads of sex in it or no sex at all in it, I like both of those. Also, I hesitate to say this, but: some people do feel obliged, given the festive element, to write a cheerful and happy Yuletide story. I like those! I like them a lot. But this is me saying: if the story of your heart is bleak and despairing, I'm here for it. I want to hear it.

Here are my fandoms, with a bit more about each:

The Good Place )

Star Trek Discovery )

Murderbot Diaries - Martha Wells )

(One last thing - please feel free to assume I'm all caught up with Disco and the Good Place by Christmas.)

Thank you again, friend! To reiterate: write what you want, and don't mind me.

Dear Yulegoat, 2017 Edition

Oct. 5th, 2017 12:26 pm
ceb: (xmas)
[personal profile] ceb
Dear Yuletide author,

Thank you for writing for me! I love hand-made presents and I am easy to please. I hope you will find something you enjoy writing here. This is me at AO3.

General likes/dislikes:

DNW: Please no RPF or PWP

I would prefer gen fic for all the fandoms I've nominated, though plot-relevant sex is fine if that's where your plot needs to go. I don't mind whether I get a happy ending or not. I prefer bittersweet to crushing doom (though if you want to write appropriately epic crushing doom for Gloryhammer then knock yourself out :-). Bittersweet and/or ambiguous endings are a thing I love very much.

I like competence and the ability to think things through; I am annoyed by plots where a character does something out-of-character stupid just to advance the plot. I have no problem with in-character mistakes and if written well they can make the story.

I adore experimental and unusual formats (and, apparently, lists). Please, if you want to, tell me a story as a game or a series of drabbles or a shopping list or a puzzle or a 1-line fic with a very large set of intertwined footnotes or a poem or an ASCII map or half of a scribbled note exchange... if there's some crazy thing you've been wanting to try to write forever but aren't sure if it would work or if your recipient would get it, I am the right person to send it to. If you're not that person and just want to write a story, I will also be delighted, so please play to your strengths and don't feel you need to reach for a weird format if you don't want to.

All my specific suggestions are intended as idea sparks, I don't have my heart set on any of them and I will not be even slightly disappointed if you have a different idea you'd like to pursue. Run with them, or not, as suits your story.

AO3 Name: molybdomantic

Fandom 1: Powerpuff Girls
Characters: Space Towtruck

I am greatly enjoying the return of the Powerpuffs after such a long hiatus. I find I desperately need to know more about the girls' new favourite TV show, Space Towtruck. What is Space Towtruck's greatest secret? What other adventures has Space Towtruck encountered? Don't worry too much about canon though, I get the feeling this is the kind of show that has multiple reboots, comic versions, etc. Feel free to include the girls if you would like to (maybe they get sucked into a Space Towtruck story via the magic of plot, or have an argument about which is the best Space Towtruck reboot). I like Mojo Jojo too, especially in his wordier incarnation of the earlier series, but find many of the other villains a little irritating.

If you're not caught up on the new series, you can find 90% of the existing Space Towtruck canon in the first half of this episode:
and the theme song is at the start of this episode:

Fandom 2: The Order of the Stick
Characters: Vaarsuvius (Order of the Stick)

Vaarsuvius is an arrogant, overly-verbose, clever-clogs, pompous arse, but I love them anyway. They're learning humility as the full consequences of their misguided evil pact hits them. However I would be delighted if you took me back to those pre-humility days and showed me V. dealing with a lower-stakes problem in their own special way. Maybe escapades at Magic Academy (or wherever they learned) - I bet V. even managed to be insufferable in their lab book and exam papers. Or a tale from the early adventures of the Order where V.'s magic saves or hinders the party.

Fandom 3: Spambots (Anthropomorphic)
Characters: Financial Robot (Anthropomorfic)

Recently my spam has been full of Financial Robot. Financial robot guarantees everyone stability and income. Robot never sleeps. It makes money for you 24/7. Most successful people already use Robot. Do you?

I would like to know more about Financial Robot. How do they do it? Are they an inexhaustible super-being? Maybe they fight crime and then redistribute supervillains' loot, an electronic Robin Hood. Or perhaps they own a sinister and cruel number mine where lesser robots work their gears to the bone. All I know is, I can always rely on Financial Robot. Financial Robot is always looking out for me. for more Financial Robot facts.

Fandom 4: Agricola (Board Game)
Characters: Any

The characters in Agricola... are playing Agricola:

Do they know they're in a game? Are they trapped in some kind of hellish puzzle with no way to win, as a punishment for crimes past, Cube-style? Or is this the first of a new wave of Reality Board Games with a cult following? Maybe they don't know and live a comfortable, unsurprising life in the rhythms of the year/game. I just want to know so I can stop wondering :-)

Fandom 5: Tales from the Kingdom of Fife - Gloryhammer (Album)
Characters: Any

I am in love with this unashamedly epic fantasy metal. It's tongue-in-cheek but in a "let us take this and make it GLORIOUS" way, not a poking fun way. I was going to say it reminds me of the delightfully awful Victorian poet William McGonagall, but it turns out that's not even slightly accidental and he's a major influence.

I would love back-story fic for this. How did Zargothrax get so evil? Who froze the Frozen Princess? (These questions may be related.) Tales of the founding of the Kingdom of Dundee or the endless line of Angus McFifes, scandinavian saga-style. Or perhaps McGonagall's entire output is a Victorian reflection of events in this alternative universe, and the Tay Bridge disaster is merely the manifestation of the Fall of the Bridge of Krafnor in the Battle of Kinross in our more mundane world.

But remember, whatever you do, keep it epic. \m/

Some links you might find helpful:

Thank you again and I hope you have a fun Yuletide!
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