IT

Sep. 26th, 2017 10:44 am
cjlasky7: (Default)
[personal profile] cjlasky7
This is going to sound weird....

Went to see IT on Friday morning, and it was a thoroughly enjoyable cinematic experience. Beautifully shot, crisply written, superb performances--I recommend it to anyone looking for quality pulp movie making.

Here's the weird part...

The movie didn't scare me at all. But I really liked it anyway.

(Spoilers ahead....)

I guess at this point in time, Pennywise doesn't have any mystery for me. I never read the novel, but I was a big fan of the 1990 miniseries, with Tim Curry ruining "clown" as a profession for the next 200 years. We know that at key points in the movie, Pennywise (or one of ITs other forms) is going to jump out of the shadows and scare the bejesus out of the kids. We also know that none of the heroes will die, because we've got the sequel lined up for September 2019, and they're all coming back.

(Except for Georgie, of course. This version shows Georgie's gruesome demise, ripped arm and everything. But even here, you know it's going to happen; you aren't scared-- you just cringe, waiting for the inevitable.)

The movie is much more successful establishing setting and mood. The town of Derry, Maine has been under this creature's oppressive thumb since the town's founding, centuries before. The atmosphere is metaphorically poisoned, and we feel how that poison has seeped into the very structure of the town.

The most effective horror in the movie are the scenes of everyday brutality and abuse in the lives of our adolescent heroes: the creepiness of Bev's father, constantly asking if she's still his "little girl"; Eddie's mother, almost literally smothering him to death with her toxic love; and the roving gang of psychotic school bullies, a veritable junior SS, terrorizing the kids on a daily basis.

But underneath all that is a basic truth that's even more ghastly. Even though Pennywise has ravaged the town every 27 years, the town has somehow managed to... live with it. The posters go up, there's a futile search, the children are mourned, but over time, the names blur together and life goes on as it was. (How very... Sunnydale.)

It's this core horror--the fear that their existence is ultimately meaningless--that spurs our heroes to action against the oppression of the town, the bullies, their parents, and then Pennywise himself.

The result is not so much a great horror movie, but a great character study--kind of like "Stand By Me", but with an evil, shape-shifting clown.

Looking forward to Chapter Two.

Tearing Out, Post #42

Sep. 26th, 2017 08:32 am
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[personal profile] usedtobeljs
Construction update: M and his son, who is learning the business in hopes of taking over, started tearing out yesterday. (For those of us who've watched Fixer Upper: this is not Demo Day, but Demo Week.)

In advance of that, I toiled Sunday in the unseasonably steamy heat for several hours, trying to go through accumulated crap that I had thrown in the attached garage space and forgotten about. It is remarkably depressing to realize how much shit -- a word I choose deliberately -- was piled up out there, gathering dust and mold. The job was made worse because I still had all the empty boxes from the stuff I'd shipped from my dad's house. I ran out of garbage bins and sacks early on, but bless M, he is throwing the rest of the discards into his dump trailer.

Currently Master Danger is reluctantly accepting the stuff I'm keeping in "his" room (luggage, Christmas decorations, paintings, chair, exercise stuff, stepladder, etc etc). The disorder makes me unbelievably itchy, but we persevere.

The good thing is that M and his son have already made amazing progress, and I am hoping (fingers crossed) that the job might be done before Christmas. Last night, before a last round of discards, I walked through the space opened up and imagined the new rooms to be created from the tearing out. New world in an old house.

What would you like to discard today?
selenak: (rootbeer)
[personal profile] selenak
In short, hm. Could go either way.

Spoilers wonder when internal communication systems are going to be used )
shadowkat: (work/reading)
[personal profile] shadowkat
[Before going into the review, for those following the trials and tribulations of my air conditioning. After two sleepless nights, no, make that three, Super Installed new A/C and removed existing, broken A/C, which barely kept the room at 78 degrees at night. (Granted it could have been worse.) It's been between 26-32 C or 80-90 F the last few days, with 70-80 at night. ]

Finally finished reading The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher. This was published in the Fall of 2016, shortly before her untimely death. It is the last thing she wrote, and an interesting bookend to her writing career, which was heavily colored by insane celebrity status she achieved when she starred in a low budget sci-fi 1970s film entitled "Star Wars".

The book unlike her previous works is essentially about how Star Wars affected her life and changed it. And how she dealt with it. It's also about an ill-timed affair with a married co-star that she'd been infatuated with at the time. And how that threw her for a loop, considering her father had left her mother, along with his two young children via an affair with Elizabeth Taylor.

On a much larger scale, it's also about how the toxicity of our celebrity obsessed culture. And how starring in a little low-budget sci-fi film at the age of 19 can turn one's life upside down for good or ill.

I'm not sure if you are under the age of say, 46 or 47, you can completely understand the cultural phenomenon "Star Wars" is and was? And while Fisher attempts to explain this in her book, I'm wondering if you kinda had to be there? Not necessarily in Fisher, Hamil, and Ford's shoes, but around at the time, and cognizant of what was happening around you. Knowing that movies well weren't like that and this was a game-changer, a watershed moment in human history. A demonstration of just how certain advances in technology can change cinema forever. And a preview of what was to come.

Before Star Wars, the only film that had people lining up for it was possibly Gone With the Wind. And it wasn't around blocks. Star Wars created the term - "blockbuster", which Fisher describes as meaning a line that is broken up by blocks. It busts the blocks. The lines for Star Wars from the time it opened until roughly six or seven months later were around blocks. I remember my father driving us to two hours away to see it. We'd never done that before. It was different than anything we'd seen -- nothing was quite like it. George Lucas redefined the cinema experience with Star Wars, he'd created surround sound, special effects that no one had seen before, and incorporated robots, puppetry, and creatures in his film that weren't obviously humans in cheap makeup. You had space-cruisers rocketing through space shooting each other. Lucas had combined the popular action/adventure cinema tropes of the 1940s and 50s into one movie - he'd combined the Western with the WWII drama with the Swashbuckler. Watching Star Wars was like seeing an Errol Flynn flick, a John Wayne flick and a WWII James Garner flick all at once. And it was fun. Not scary, like most sci-fi films and television series had been, but fun. And not campy either.

Today, years later, the first film seems rather quaint, I suspect, and the special effects mediocre.
People have been perplexed by what they saw as wooden acting. Or the cheesy hair styles. But this was 1977. Back then, we had cheesy hair styles, and bell bottom pants. And well, special effects...were not as good as Star Wars.

Before Star Wars, sci-fi didn't do well at the movies. Mostly B movies. Before Star Wars, there weren't any blockbusters or event films, outside of maybe Gone with the Wind. (Wizard of OZ flopped.)
For years, Star Wars was the highest grossing film. And people could not wait for the second one.
It had a fandom to rival any fandom out there...and it had done something Doctor Who and Star Trek had yet to accomplish, it took sci-fi mainstream.

Fisher's book can broken up into three segments.

The first -- explains how she ended up in Star Wars.
She briefly details her audition, which she has just a vague recollection of. Apparently Brian De Palma and Lucas were doubling up their auditions. De Palma was auditioning for Carrie and Lucas for Star Wars. Lucas was the least talkative of the two. Fisher notes how this was not her first role in a film. At the age of 16, she was in Shampoo, as Lee Grant's promisicous daughter, who sleeps with Grant's lover, Warren Beatty. And prior to that she did her mother's shows. A high school drop out, due to going on tour or doing Broadway with Mom, Carrie ended up going to the Center for Performing Arts in England. And from there, auditioned for the role of Princess Leia. She notes how she practiced for her second audition with her friend Miguel Ferrar, the cousin of George Clooney, and son of Rosemary Clooney, who'd tried out for the Han Solo role. Then, Fisher goes on to explain how she ended up infatuated with Harrison Ford, and how they fell into bed together...resulting in an awkward, secretive, three month affair -- that up until now, no one knew about but Fisher and Ford.

This is prelude to the actual diaries...which make up the center section of the book, and are a bittersweet May-December romance between two actors, far from home, and in their first leading roles in what they believed at the time to be cult low budget sci-fi film that few people would see. (Because that's what sci-fi films were like in the 1970s, they were cult efforts that few people saw. No one expected this film to do well. How could they have known? The cast, with the exception of Alec Guiness, was unknowns, and even Guiness was hardly star power. And it was science fiction. Not to mention low-budget. Fisher and the cast were paid to scale, $500 a week. Flown economy class. And told to take care of their own accomodations.) When Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford had their affair they honestly didn't think it was a big deal. Fisher was infatuated with Ford. She never expected him to be interested in her, let alone kiss her, so when they end up in bed together, she finds herself starring at him and wondering, WTF? How in the heck did this happen? And where do we go from here?
She describes it in the book and in interviews afterwards as a three-month one-night stand, and a product of a location shoot. And insists that as far as she knows, Harrison hadn't done that with anyone else before or since. He, also, most likely regretted it later. He'd thought her more experienced than she actually was.

The diaries are well written, and touching. At various points, nineteen year old Fisher wonders why she tries to connect with others, if it's even possible to do so? She's introspective, flailing, and not sure of her own feelings. Is this love? How can it be? She barely knows him. Does he feel the same way about her? She asks, and gets nowhere. The most she gets is the conversation the two have on-screen in Empire Strikes Back, where she says "I love you" and he states, "I know". After reading the diaries...which unlike the rest of the book, are poetic and hopeful, I understood some of the odd interactions I've seen between Fisher and Ford in interviews and tribute specials. At the AFI - Fisher tells Ford during her tribute speech, "Harrison gets nervous every time I open my mouth and talk. He should be made aware as should you all, that my memory is foggy and sucks." Then later, "Harrison hates doing love scenes, okay maybe he just doesn't like doing them with me." And Ford's expression is exasperation and grumbling. I find that odd, since to my knowledge they hadn't really done any...but turns out they had, just behind the scenes.

If you read the diaries without the prelude, not sure they would make sense. They are bittersweet mainly due to what comes after. And touching in that the woman writing them fails to see her own brilliance and beauty, not to mention her compassion and insight into the human condition. What it is like to fall in love with someone who doesn't love you back or not as much as you love them. What it is like to be infatuated ...and awkward with a guy, tongue-tied. You can see why so many people fell in love with her. Yet in the book, she seems to think it was with Leia not her. And is rather confused.

Up until the final section, I'd thought this book was just about Fisher's affair with Ford, but no, it's about much more than that. The final section discusses fame and being the source or object of adoration...what it was like to have people come up to you on the street or at a convention, regale you with personnel stories about how you or rather the role you played in a film some 40 years ago, changed their lives. At first, she ate it up, wow, she thought, I'm in a movie people are flocking to see and is the biggest thing ever! Then, it overwhelmed her. They had promote the film. They thought it was a low-budget sci-fi film. I remember their promotional campaign. Ford, Hamil, and Fisher wandering about the country and the globe, from talk show to interview, touting a film that as Fisher puts it didn't require touting. Ford at first did most of the talking. None of them had ever done it before. At first, they thought they had to answer all their fan mail personally -- because they'd never received any before. And they all did it. Then realized no, you don't have to, that's what managers and public relations people do. As the years passed, Fisher was continuously thrown by her fame as Leia. And had a love-hate relationship with it.

spoilers and rather long, meta on fandom, Star Wars and Fisher )

Ukiah

Sep. 25th, 2017 08:40 am
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[personal profile] ranunculus

Saturday night Donald and I drove up to Ukiah. In the morning we checked the fence line in part of the Iris Barn Pastures. Carrie thought she had a problem out there. We found several minor things, but nothing that should have killed a battery. I suspect that the battery had been abused just enough to be at the end of its life anyway.

Moving on we checked the drip and spray lines at the Howell Creek restoration project. We started with the ones that were chewed up, apparently by a coyote, during August. I had just fixed them. They had all survived intact for the 5 days since I’d seen them last. We left one set of sprinklers going for a couple of hours just to give the little willows a boost.

The winter shelter for the horses was next. Our project was to finish cutting the 1 inch plywood to length and get some primer on it.

Apparently nothing ever gets done on the Ranch without painful preliminary steps. First thing in the morning I had loaded the generator into the car, hurting my back in the process. Yes, I know, I should have waited for help… Once loaded several of us tried to figure out how to siphon off the stale gas in its tank. All the ethanol that is put in gas these days may make it burn cleaner, but it also makes it go bad within about 3 months. The gas in that tank was at least a year old. Unfortunately for us, the tank on the generator was designed to be hard to steal gas from. Eventually I got a siphon going and Donald held the generator at an angle until it had drained. We refilled it with “tool gas” which is wildly expensive but has a shelf life of 2+ years. Once at the shelter, getting the generator going was a comedy of errors since there was very poor labeling on the machine (I kept trying to start it in the “off” position using the choke lever that had no info at all), even worse;  the valve on the fuel hose works the opposite of the valves I’m familiar with. This lead me to attempt to start the machine in the off position with no fuel!!

Thinking about doing this project before I left San Francisco, I realized that I no longer owned any saw-horses, the last ones had disintegrated into compost some time before. At the hardware store I found some very nice metal ones that fold up and have a carry handle. Ideal. We set the two bright yellow saw-horses up, marked the first sheet of plywood and I began running my old skill-saw through it. It immediately became obvious that the old skill-saw was un-usable. Way back when Matt was working for us he had mentioned that the saw didn’t work properly and that he thought the shaft was bent. I went to town. An hour later my brand new De Walt skill saw was making short work of the plywood.

Dave, the deer hunter, happened to be on the place taking down their hunt camp for the season. I called him and he very obligingly came down and helped shuffle plywood around, giving my sore back a rest. We got everything cut, and Donald got quite a lot of paint on the plywood given that he kept being interrupted to help move things.

Once the plywood was cut I tightened the bolts that hold the rafter to the walls with a tiny ratchet wrench that was terribly annoying. I like my tools to work, not half work!  Here is the worksite. Note the black plastic on the right hand side.  There a lovely little frogs sheltering in its damp folds!

At the end of the day we walked past the new tents that are sheltering the various bits of equipment that no longer fit in the barn. The tents are getting quite badly blown around. Next trip I need to fix that problem. I know what I want to do, put big 4x6 runners under each side of the tent and fasten everything securely down to those.

Got back to SF about 10pm.

 

selenak: (Pumuckl)
[personal profile] selenak
You may or may not be aware we had elections in Germany yesterday. The results weren't very surprising (if you've been following news and polls), but nonetheless shocking, because Nazis in German parliament for the first time in over 70 years should be. (Let me qualify the technicalities: of course we had original flavour Nazis in the very first post war parliament, it being 1949. We even had a rather prominent one, the original commentator of the Nuremberg "race laws", in Adenauer's cabinet. And there were right wing extremist parties since then who didn't pretend very hard to be anything else. But none of them reached 13%, which the right wing extremists du jour, the AFD, just did.) In practical terms: this means 80-something MPs drilled in verbal abuse and little else entering parliament as of next year. At least they won't be the official opposition, since the SPD, which had its historic worst result in the entire post war history with 20 something %, ended the governing Big Coalition last night. (This is actually a good thing and was direly necessary to save the party, imo. It governed in coalition with Merkel's conservatives for two out of three terms Angela Merkel has been chancellor, and while this wasn't the only reason for its steady loss of votes, it was a big one.) How the "Jamaica" coalition (so called because of the colors associated with the parties in question - black for the CDU/CSU, the conversative union, yellow for the FDP, the business-oriented liberal party, which will return to parliament after having been voted out four years ago, and green for the Greens, obviously) will work out is anyone's guess, but it's the best of currently available alternatives. And since the AFD does have a lot of inner fighting between its heads going on and hasn't yet managed to actually do something constructive in any of the provincial parliaments they were already in, they might destroy themselves over the next four years, as the 80s flavor of right wing extremists did (they were called Republicans, I kid you not). None of that changes me feeling thoroughly disgusted this morning at 13% of our electorate, and angry with a lot of other people as well.

Here are two articles from two of our leading papers translated into English which analyze the election and its results:

Tears won't change a thing (from the Süddeutsche, in which Heribert Prantl says that we're the recovering alcoholic of nations, which is why it's differently serious when part of our electorate falls off the wagon to get drunk on demagogery, racism and authoritarianism again)

The Panic Orchestra, which also analyses the role the media played (because just as with Trump, the bloody AFD seemed to be on tv all the time)

On the bright(er) side of things, there were spontanous anti AFD marches on the street in Berlin and Cologne last night, and they were soundly defeated as also rans in Munich. (Which is a relief on a personal level, since I live there, and also because of history.)

Speaking of Munich, to conclude on a distracting and cheerier note, the Süddeutsche also hosts an US journalist who last week penned this column:

11 things Americans get wrong about the Oktoberfest

(no subject)

Sep. 24th, 2017 08:00 pm
shadowkat: (Default)
[personal profile] shadowkat
1. Television shows watched lately...

The Good Place

This is actually funnier this year than last. We basically watched Michael attempt to make things work and fail miserably.

It was a wonderful satire of organizational and management failure. Or directorial failure.

If you like absurd humor mixed with light satire...this is worth a shot.

Mozart in the Jungle -- which was adapted from Mozart in the Jungle- Sex Drugs and Classical Music.

In the tradition of Anthony Bourdain’s Kitchen Confidential and Gelsey Kirkland’s Dancing on My Grave, Mozart in the Jungle delves into the lives of the musicians and conductors who inhabit the insular world of classical music. In a book that inspired the Amazon Original series starring Gael García Bernal and Malcolm McDowell, oboist Blair Tindall recounts her decades-long professional career as a classical musician—from the recitals and Broadway orchestra performances to the secret life of musicians who survive hand to mouth in the backbiting New York classical music scene, where musicians trade sexual favors for plum jobs and assignments in orchestras across the city. Tindall and her fellow journeymen musicians often play drunk, high, or hopelessly hungover, live in decrepit apartments, and perform in hazardous conditions— working-class musicians who schlep across the city between low-paying gigs, without health-care benefits or retirement plans, a stark contrast to the rarefied experiences of overpaid classical musician superstars. An incisive, no-holds-barred account, Mozart in the Jungle is the first true, behind-the-scenes look at what goes on backstage and in the Broadway pit.

The television series follows the conductors more than just the oboist.

I'm tempted to get the book, I love books like this.

Loving the series...has great characters, lovely music, and is happy. It's comforting. Like a nice blanket on a winters day.

2. New A/C not yet installed, hardly surprising. This is the Super's Day off. So surviving with old A/C fan and fan. Which brings things to 75 degrees. Hopefully will sleep tonight. Was up at 6:20 AM
in order to get delivery, which ended up arriving at 8 AM. So made it to church, saw MD off. MD was quite kind. I'll miss her.

Church was better this week...the sermon was about the evil addiction of the iphone. Apparently teens have stopped having sex, going to parties, and exercising since the advent of the iphone, suicides and isolation has increased. One teen commented that she didn't leave her bedroom and just was on her phone and social media all day.

So on October 8, she's going to challenge people to check in their phones, or put them in a basket and do without for a day. Unless you have to have it for some reason or have a good relationship with your phone.

This lecture sermon was lost on me. I have no relationship with the phone. It's off 90% of the time. I tend to use it mainly as a camera and to check the time. At work, I'll check the news or FB, if I'm bored. I don't like phones. They irritate me. I bought a cell -- kicking and screaming, along with the iphone. I barely use it.

I'd be just as happy without it.

But hey, I got a basket to put my backpack and purse in. Also got rid of dusty sofa. And got armchair. Now trying to decide whether to buy second arm chair or a love seat two seater couch.
On the fence. Also need new coffee table, small desk (to draw on and eat on), and more storage capability. Bit by bit. By the time I'm done, I'll probably want to move again.

3. Music tastes...watching Mozart in the Jungle reminds me how much I love classical music. I just don't see it in person, because it tends to put me to sleep. I prefer to listen over watching people playing. Odd. But there it is.

Ranking?
1. Classical
2. Jazz
3. Folk/Singer-Songwriter
4. Indie/Alternative
5. Rock (British and otherwise)
6. Country/Easy Listening
7. Broadway Show Tune
8. Dance
9. Blues/R&B
10. Heavy Metal (ie. Nine Inch Nails)
11. Electronica
12. Opera/Hip Hop
13. Rap

(no subject)

Sep. 24th, 2017 05:56 pm
shadowkat: (Default)
[personal profile] shadowkat
My mother and I were laughing our heads off over THIS.

Mother called this horrendously hilarious. She's not wrong.


During Sunday’s NFL games, scores of NFL players knelt during the national anthem, imitating the protest initiated by Colin Kaepernick, the former 49ers quarterback who took a knee during the anthem to protest police brutality and racial injustice. The widespread protest was adopted after Donald Trump lashed out at Kaepernick’s actions in a campaign rally, saying, “Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a bitch off the field right now – He’s fired’?”

(Trump also doubled down and called for a boycott of the NFL until the protests stop, hilariously not realizing that there was already a left-wing call for a boycott against the league’s racism.)

There are a lot of football games on Sundays, and players protested at almost every single one. Even those players who didn’t kneel linked arms in a sign of unity with their teammates, and almost every football organization had issued a statement of support for protesting players before today’s games.



Apparently, or according to my mother who watched the game (I don't watch Football unless it's the superbowl and the Giants are playing), the Pittsburgh Steelers, outside of one player, refused to come out on the field during the playing of the national anthem.

Me:Uhm, what do they normally do?
Mother: They normally come out on the field, stand and put their hand over their chest. Lately they've been kneeling in protest. But the Steelers decided to not come out at all.
Me: Well, that does save the knees.

Mother: Owners of the Football teams and heads of the NFL who had supported Trump and contributed to his campaign, are now, standing shoulder to shoulder with their teammates in protest against him.
Me: Wow. Guess they are regretting that campaign contribution about now.

Mother: He's told Americans to stop watching football and said the sales are decreasing, and less people are attending games...meanwhile the stadiums are filled to capacity. He also told them to fire the people kneeling.
Me: Like they are really going to fire the guys scoring the goals. Come on. Also Americans don't stop watching football.
Mother: They don't care about the violence and the injuries...
Me: There's a boycott of it going from the left...
Mother: That's mainly about the injuries.
Me: No I think that's a separate boycott. Although, honestly I don't see how any of these boycotts will work, people who love football will continue to watch football and go to football games. Unless you give them a deeply personal reason not to.

(no subject)

Sep. 24th, 2017 05:40 pm
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[personal profile] shadowkat
Found THIS the other day on Facebook, and it reminded me of a conversation I was having with Peasant about the regional culture and colonization of the US.

In his fourth book, "American Nations: A History of the Eleven Rival Regional Cultures in North America," award-winning author Colin Woodard identifies 11 distinct cultures that have historically divided the US.

"The country has been arguing about a lot of fundamental things lately including state roles and individual liberty," Woodard, a Maine native who won the 2012 George Polk Award for investigative reporting, told Business Insider.

"[But] in order to have any productive conversation on these issues," he added, "you need to know where you come from. Once you know where you are coming from it will help move the conversation forward."


Below are a few examples of how Woodward describes the US regional cultural makeup.



Yankeedom

Encompassing the entire Northeast north of New York City and spreading through Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota, Yankeedom values education, intellectual achievement, communal empowerment, and citizen participation in government as a shield against tyranny. Yankees are comfortable with government regulation. Woodard notes that Yankees have a "Utopian streak." The area was settled by radical Calvinists.

New Netherland

A highly commercial culture, New Netherland is "materialistic, with a profound tolerance for ethnic and religious diversity and an unflinching commitment to the freedom of inquiry and conscience," according to Woodard. It is a natural ally with Yankeedom and encompasses New York City and northern New Jersey. The area was settled by the Dutch.

The Midlands

Settled by English Quakers, The Midlands are a welcoming middle-class society that spawned the culture of the "American Heartland." Political opinion is moderate, and government regulation is frowned upon. Woodard calls the ethnically diverse Midlands "America's great swing region." Within the Midlands are parts of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, Iowa, Kansas, and Nebraska.

Tidewater

Tidewater was built by the young English gentry in the area around the Chesapeake Bay and North Carolina. Starting as a feudal society that embraced slavery, the region places a high value on respect for authority and tradition. Woodard notes that Tidewater is in decline, partly because "it has been eaten away by the expanding federal halos around D.C. and Norfolk."

Greater Appalachia

Colonized by settlers from the war-ravaged borderlands of Northern Ireland, northern England, and the Scottish lowlands, Greater Appalachia is stereotyped as the land of hillbillies and rednecks. Woodard says Appalachia values personal sovereignty and individual liberty and is "intensely suspicious of lowland aristocrats and Yankee social engineers alike." It sides with the Deep South to counter the influence of federal government. Within Greater Appalachia are parts of Kentucky, Tennessee, West Virginia, Arkansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, Indiana, Illinois, and Texas.

Deep South

The Deep South was established by English slave lords from Barbados and was styled as a West Indies-style slave society, Woodard notes. It has a very rigid social structure and fights against government regulation that threatens individual liberty. Alabama, Florida, Mississippi, Texas, Georgia, and South Carolina are all part of the Deep South.

El Norte

Composed of the borderlands of the Spanish-American empire, El Norte is "a place apart" from the rest of America, according to Woodard. Hispanic culture dominates in the area, and the region values independence, self-sufficiency, and hard work above all else. Parts of Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, and California are in El Norte.

The Left Coast

Colonized by New Englanders and Appalachian Midwesterners, the Left Coast is a hybrid of "Yankee utopianism and Appalachian self-expression and exploration," Woodard says, adding that it is the staunchest ally of Yankeedom. Coastal California, Oregon, and Washington are in the Left Coast.



I don't know if I entirely agree with his views. For one thing what about the 50% of the population that jumps around? A lot of us move due to jobs, family, education, spouses, children (see family), climate, and finances (some areas are pricier than others).

And, the recent immigrants from other areas?

I'm from three of these areas, possibly four. New Netherland, The Midlands, and Yankeedom.

But, it's interesting that the wealthy British and Irish colonized the slave colonies and participated heavily in the slave trade. (Bad British and Irish). While the Dutch, Quakers, Scottish Calvinists...went the opposite route.

Again, I don't think it was that clear cut or easily mapped. People move around a lot. And he forgot the Welsh miners who settled in PA, Virginia and Kentucky.

Oville - About a Girl

Sep. 24th, 2017 08:23 am
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[personal profile] fresne
Hmmm... when I finished the "About a girl" episode of Oroville, I longed for the kind of time I used to take writing analyses of shows. Alas, I'm very much in the midst of finishing (trying to finish) this year's writing project, so I shouldn't. Because those tend to take several days to write.
But perhaps something foreshortened.

Read more... )
shadowkat: (Default)
[personal profile] shadowkat
I'm up early waiting for an a/c delivery due to arrive in fifteen or twenty minutes. So, passing time posting.

1. Found THIS interesting piece about a mysterious group that is slowly hacking its way through Brietbart's advertising base one tweet at a time. Thanks to conuly for the link.

I found it interesting in regards to the comments about free speech.

Read more... )

Another example of censorship... The banned 1910 Magazine that started a feminist movement in Japan.


She led the men through the large house and down the long corridor to the rooms that served as the magazine’s headquarters. The men looked around and spotted just a single copy of the magazine’s latest issue. They seized the publication and, as they were leaving, finally told the surprised young woman why they had come. This issue of Seitō had been banned, they told her, on the grounds that it was “disruptive of the public peace and order.”

The young women who had created the magazine less than a year before had known it would be controversial. It was created by women, to feature women’s writing to a female audience. In Japan in 1911, it was daring for a woman to put her name in print on anything besides a very pretty poem. The magazine’s name, Seitō, translated to “Bluestockings,” a nod to an unorthodox group of 18th-century English women who gathered to discuss politics and art, which was an extraordinary activity for their time.


Continuing on the thread of the First Amendment and Censorship...

Views Among College Students Regarding the First Amendment.

Sort of surprised me. We had more rights in college regarding expression in the 1980s. And a lot of discussion about it. The Author is John Villasenor - Nonresident Senior Fellow - Governance Studies, Center for Technology Innovation. Apparently college kids can now post research thesis on the internet.

[ETA: Apparently this is junk science and not verified with facts...according to an article in the UK Guardian. Which by the way throws a whole new angle on the whole free speech bit...do we have the right to spread false information on the internet or poorly researched data? OR should we have the right to do that? Should that be stopped? Well, you do run into the slippery slope of what constitutes false information and who should be the judge. Right now the alt-right lead by Trump is claiming any news that disagrees with or disparages their message is fake news. Anything that calls their information into account or questions it. Which is a bit...well, telling in of itself and definitely censorship. By labeling news that questions you as fake news or critiques you, or fact-checks something you said as fake news...you are attempting to censor your opposition and that's dangerous. That is censorship. So the Guardian questioning this student's thesis is correct. They are fact-checking him. While Trump telling people not to watch say CNN or refusing to provide information to news sources that have critigued him the past as an attempt to shut them down is censorship, because he's the President of the US (like it or not). If he was a private citizen with no power over the media, he could say whatever he damn well pleased. But as President, what he states... is a whole other matter. ]

And this is another example of infraction of Free Speech, where the news media is forced to support a governmental objective or regime...

Sinclair Broadcasting is forcing all 174 stations that they own across the country to air daily pro-Trump propaganda segments..

See this is why I ignore broadcast news, and only watch NY1 (Time Warner) or NY Times and check sources.

Good news? The a/c came. Bad news? Have to get super to install. Good news? Current A/C appears to be sort of working at the moment. Which made me question decision to get new one. Have decided to treat it as a gift. It's working until I install new one. And it's not really working -- only the fan, and it won't go below 75 degrees effectively.

(no subject)

Sep. 24th, 2017 07:21 am
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[personal profile] shadowkat
Didn't know some of this...but proof of a gender bias in our culture that is slowly changing and may save lives:

Research is now being conducted for women and men, using female animals not just male animals, as it had been done previously -- yes, I know the fact it is being done on animals..is well, but that's another discussion.


A 2014 National Institutes of Health policy that requires scientists to begin using female lab animals takes full effect in January. All basic animal research must include females — or researchers must justify the exclusion. Bottom line: Use females or lose funding.

This is great news and long overdue.

"I'm really thrilled," says Teresa Woodruff, director of Northwestern University's Women's Health Research Institute, who lobbied for this policy change for years. "I think this is going to be a complete game-changer for science and medicine. If we can get a better understanding of how drugs work at the basic science level, on men and women, that's going to improve the medical pipeline for all of us."

You might think including female animals in research is common sense. But remember, until 1993, many researchers thought nothing of using male subjects almost exclusively in human clinical trials to test a broad array of treatments and drugs. No Girlzz Alowed. As if the physiology of men and of women were so similar as to be nearly indistinguishable.

"The truth of the matter is men and women are very different at the cellular level, at the molecular level, at the systemic level," Doris Taylor, director of regenerative medicine research at the Texas Heart Institute told The Washington Post.

Something you probably didn't know: "Every cell has a sex," Dr. Janine Clayton, director of the NIH's Office of Research on Women's Health, told The New York Times. "Each cell is either male or female, and that genetic difference results in different biochemical processes within those cells. ... If you don't know that and put all of the cells together, you're missing out, and you may also be misinterpreting your data."


I found out about this indirectly through someone attempting to sell me a hormone plan, based on a quick internet test. So I was skeptical and did research, and found the article above.

And the differences in how men and women's bodies handle nutrition, also how the economic, social and educational cultural bias to gender have a detrimental effect on overall health in various communities and areas:


Gender differences in social determinants of health and illness

Social factors, such as the degree to which women are excluded from schooling, or from participation in public life, affect their knowledge about health problems and how to prevent and treat them. The subordination of women by men, a phenomenon found in most countries, results in a distinction between roles of men and women and their separate assignment to domestic and public spheres. The degree of this subordination varies by country and geographical or cultural patterns within countries, however, in developing areas, it is most pronounced. In this section, the example of nutrition will demonstrate how gender has an important influence on the social determinants of food-consumption patterns and hence on health outcomes.

Several studies have shown the positive relationship among education of mothers, household autonomy, and the nutritional status of their children (6, 7). During the first 10 years of life, the energy and nutrient needs of girls and boys are the same. Yet, in some countries, especially in South Asia, men and boys often receive greater quantities of higher quality, nutritious food such as dairy products, because they will become the breadwinners (7–15). Das Gupta argued that depriving female children of food was an explicit strategy used by parents to achieve a small family size and desired composition (13). Studies from Latin America also found evidence of gender bias in food allocation in childhood (16–18) and, correspondingly, in healthcare allocation (19).

In developing countries, most studies show preferential food allocation to males over females. Nonetheless, some studies have found no sex differences in the nutritional status of girls and boys (20–22), and others have described differences only at certain times of the life-cycle. For example, research in rural Mexico found no nutritional differences between girls and boys in infancy or preschool, but school-going girls consumed less energy than boys. This was explained by the fact that girls are engaged in less physical activity as a result of culturally-prescribed sex roles rather than by sex bias in food allocation (23).

Studies from developing countries of gender differences in nutrition in adulthood argue that household power relations are closely linked to nutritional outcomes. In Zimbabwe, for example, when husbands had complete control over all decisions, women had significantly lower nutritional status than men (24). Similarly, female household heads had significantly better nutritional status, suggesting that decision-making power is strongly associated with access to and control over food resources. Access of women to cash-income was a positive determinant of their nutritional status. In rural Haiti, the differences in nutritional status for male and female caregivers were examined for children whose mothers were absent from home during the day. Those who were looked after by males, such as fathers, uncles, or older brothers, had poorer nutritional status than children who were cared for by females, such as grandmothers or sisters (25). Ethnographic research conducted by the authors revealed, however, that, while mothers told the interviewers that the father stayed home with the children, it is probable that the father was, in fact, absent most of the day working and that the children were cared for by the oldest child, sometimes as young as five years of age.

The involvement of both men and women in nutritional information and interventions is key to their successful implementation. Unfortunately, in most developing countries, women are selected for nutritional education because they are responsible for the preparation of meals. However, they often lack access to nutritional food because men generally make decisions about its production and purchase. Similarly, men may not provide nutritional food for their families because they have not received information about nutrition. The participation of both men and women is, therefore, fundamental to changing how decisions about food are made and food-consumption patterns and nutrition families (26). The study in rural Haiti referred to above also found positive outcomes through the formation of men's groups which received information on nutrition, health, and childcare. These men, in turn, were resources for education of the whole community (25).


Go HERE for The Study in the Journal of Health, Population and Nutrition

The good news is that biologists, nutritionists and scientists are slowly moving past gender bias and looking into both genders health issues. As opposed to looking at only one gender, or generalizing and thinking there is no difference between the two genders.

How we think about gender, how we view it, and how we deal with it -- these articles and others demonstrate has to change.

Also I need to change doctors. My current doctor doesn't see these differences and specializes in men's health. He's hurt me without knowing it. I had to figure stuff out for myself. From his perspective -- if I exercise and eat like a man, I'll be fine. Doesn't factor in perimenuopause, hormonal changes, etc. Nor does he appear to care. Time for a new doctor. Just have to find one.
It's harder to find doctors who take my health insurance in an urban area...then you'd think.
I'd actually be better off if I lived out in Long Island like my co-workers.

(no subject)

Sep. 23rd, 2017 08:50 pm
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[personal profile] shadowkat
Hmmm...update meme:

1. Doing: Spent the day dealing with vendors, which was well trying and a touch stressful. Good news? Accomplished all three tasks.

Read more... )

Then went for a long meditative walk and grocery shopping. Because all of that, well the a/c stuff, was insanely anxiety inducing, also frustrating. And it went okay, or as well as can be expected.

2. What I am Watching?

Vietnam War Documentary on PBS by Ken Burns. And I'm bored. It is interesting in places. But too much information. Brain overload. I need to watch this when I'm not gainfully employed, and writing three books at the same time in my head. Plus trying to figure other things out.

Did learn a few things...the French do not come out as very nice. Actually it's an indictment of the French, British and Americans. Apparently the French colonized Vietnam and enslaved the inhabitants, justifying it as civilizing them. The Vietnamese could have done without the French version of civilization and didn't need them, thank you very much. Ho Chi Mingh went to the Americans to help them get out from under French rule. And the Americans sort of helped, but got caught up in well the Cold War and their fear of Communism. He tried, in various letters to various Presidents, to inform them that he wasn't a communist and he just wanted a free state for Vietnamese. (If anything he was more of a nationalist.) But alas, the CIA with its own agenda, refused to pass the letters on to the Presidents. Things escalated, the US became paranoid of Communism and hence the Vietnam War. The American fear of Communism and European urge to colonize killed over a million people.

Depressing. And hard to watch. I knew some of it already. What I didn't know was what the French did.
Okay, not completely true, the French father of a family that I stayed with in the 1980s in Brittany, did tell me a lot of it. But he told me in French, so I got about half of it. He was stationed there and had been in the trenches.

What else?

The Expanse, Mozart in the Jungle, Wynonna Earp S2, and General Hospital. Also tried to watch The 100, but I think I'm going to give up on it and delete. I just don't care about any of the characters any longer. I've no clue why. I liked the first two seasons, but the third one lost me a bit with the whole Allie arc and oh the world is going to blow up, again. My least favorite sci-fi subgenre is nuclear war. I got burned out on it in the 1980s.

3. What am I reading?

At the moment, Carrie Fisher's The Princess Diarist --- which is her publication of the diaries she kept while filming the first Star Wars film - A New Hope. The first 45% of the book is prologue or set-up to the diaries. She's basically setting the stage, so you can figure out what she's talking about in the diaries. Because Fisher is more like I am in her journal writing...she writes about feelings, how she feels about things, what her thoughts are, and less about what she did or what happened. She's a reflective and introspective writer, not a...oh today we had lunch, and went to the doctor, and did this, and that, and had sex with our boyfriend. She also isn't into doing graphic sex scenes...so if you were hoping for Star Wars porn...it's not there. I'm liking the diaries more than I expected, much better than the introductory material.

However...she does in the introductory material state that she'd received closure with Ford, and he was kind. Which explains why they had no problem doing the next two films together, and were able to remain friends or at the very least friendly. Ford is not the most emotionally reflective of folks, which if you read any of his interviews you probably already knew. Nor much of a conversationalist. He's fairly monosyllabic. But he does tell her...in response to her statement that she's such a hick. "No, I think you are a lot more intelligent than you think you are...so an intelligent hick." Pause.
Then after a bit. "You have the eyes of a doe and the balls of a samaria (sp?)." Which she realized was out of character for him to say and incredibly kind. In the interview -- the only thing Ford was willing to state about Fisher and the book, was more or less the same thing ...that she was brilliant, kind, and amazingly brave and he was glad to have known her. And to his credit, he'd thought when they entered their affair that she was a lot more experienced than she was, for she came across that way. And they smoked so much pot that Fisher can't remember much of it, and really just has her diaries and vague memories to go on. She does wonder why she didn't go for Mark, who would have been far more suitable. (Honestly? I know why. I'd have jumped Ford over Hamil when I was 19. At 12 I preferred Luke, but I was more romantic and less sexual at that point. And I'm ten years younger than she was.)

Also read a lot of romance novels. Read more... )

I'm eclectic and insanely diverse reader. There is not a genre that I have not binge read or read at one time in my lifetime. I just can't remember half of the books that I read in it...the downside of binge reading, I suspect. I do have my favorite -- go to genre, which is sci-fantasy, mainly because unlike romance and mystery, it tends to combine the other genres within it, and I like world-building apparently. Or crave something a bit more complex and thematic, with lots of metaphors. I jump into sci-fantasy in between other books.

4. What I'm writing...

Besides multiple things for work, and blog posts...still plodding away on my sci-fi novel, the one about the resistance leader negotiating a peace settlement with the aliens she's been fighting for a decade. Doing a lot of world-building in the midst of the action. At the moment sort of stuck on a plot bunny. Read more... )

Wonder Woman

Sep. 23rd, 2017 06:40 am
cactuswatcher: (Default)
[personal profile] cactuswatcher
I'm always late to the party when it comes to seeing movies, but there are some I look forward to seeing.

Spoilers if anyone cares )

Saturday, Post #41

Sep. 23rd, 2017 09:26 am
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[personal profile] usedtobeljs
Just got back from a morning walk. (I have started a workout plan created by my friend and trainer Fr, in anticipation of a walking-tour vacation next July, hurrah.) It is still Hot Soup here in the subtropics, but the light has changed, and soon, soon the dewpoint will drop to livable levels.

(I hope.)

While the weather should be changing in good ways soon, my house and backyard are about to undergo Major Updates. I foresee two and a half to three months of craziness with the house, while my contractor redoes the 1960s addition and makes it a) a rationally designed space, and b) one better suited to Aging in Place. Example: currently there are two steps down from my kitchen to the utility room/hallway; these steps lead directly, as in less than a foot of clearance, into my washing machine. To the right of the steps is a giant Nixon-era (LITERALLY) water heater. It's a cramped and slightly dangerous arrangement, and I will be so glad when it goes away. I am NOT looking forward to the construction noise and mess, but the end result should be great.

Also, I adore M the contractor, who did my other bathroom renovation, and he will do a good job for me.

The other change is that my backyard, which is sort of a mess (except with excellent treework!), is getting a proper design. D my landscape designer is doing some practical things I requested, like a Corgi-size border fence keeping Master Danger away from the proper fence, but he also, like, somehow intuited the kind of Provencal stone courtyard image that I keep pinning, and is giving me a courtyard space of gravel, flagstones, and succulents, which I'll be able to see from my kitchen window. YAY YAY YAY. There will also be some "lawn" for the young master and loads of native plants, including pollinators.

I'll keep you posted on how Master Danger does with all these changes. :)

What change are you looking forward to?

Misc

Sep. 22nd, 2017 05:20 pm
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[personal profile] ranunculus
Worked a show at the Masonic Auditorium yesterday.  Singer named Kalid.  Very minimal load in after which I came home and slept solidly for an hour and a half.  Went back to run followspot on an utterly forgettable show.  No work now till Monday.
Planning a trip to Ukiah on Sunday with Donald. 
  • I want to check the drip irrigation and see if the coyotes chewed it up again. 
  • Carrie needs help finding a fault in the fence at the Iris Barn.
  • We plan to spend a bunch of time painting the plywood for the Shelter.  I want it done soon!!!
Got the garden watered today.  Tomorrow I should water again, it was really dry.
Called the Ranch insurance agent and reminded her that I need a breakdown of the insurance cost.  
Now I need to write an e-mail to the Union office about a couple of things. 





Ukiah

Sep. 22nd, 2017 05:29 pm
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[personal profile] ranunculus
A flying trip to Ukiah on Tuesday Sept 19th was very satisfying.
  • The planning department gave me an extension to my permit for the shelter at the Red Barn.  It is hard to believe that it has been a whole year since we began trying to get that thing together.
  • Johnny came and helped me get the last 6 sheets of roofing onto the shelter. 
  • I purchased more paint primer (now there is 10 gallons) and 5 gallons of the tan top coat. 
  • I fixed a lot of problems on the Howell Creek drip irrigation.  Sadly a whole lot of plants had died of lack of water.  It looks like Mr Coyote got in and chewed up the drip lines so he could get a drink.  Even with the dead plants there were plenty of plants that survived, thank goodness.  Most of the damage was on the lower end, the upper end was relatively unscathed. 
  • I pulled the tarp back over the top of one of the storage tents.  The knots holding it had been tied by my helper and were clearly sub-standard.  Shouldn't be a problem now.  The tarp is to help reduce sun damage to the tent itself. 
  • Dave the Deer Hunter came by as we were finishing up the roofing and we agreed to have dinner together up at his camp.  It was very pleasant, if sad, since Dave's dad died recently. 
Altogether the day was beautiful and I got everything on my infamous "list" for the day done. 


selenak: (Schreiben by Poisoninjest)
[personal profile] selenak
Back when I marathon-read Philip Kerr's Bernie Gunther series, I saw he's also authored a lot of novels for children, and had a new one coming out this month, a standalone called Frederick the Great Detective, which, however, mysteriously seems to be available in German before it is in English. (Mysterious because Kerr's Scottish and writes in English, and the novel, which got released today, is indeed translated from the English original, I checked the imprint.) Anyway, the novel has a very similar premise to a movie I saw at last year's Munich Film Festival, Erich Kästner and Little Tuesday - the review I wrote about the film is here: boy falls in love with Emil and the Detectives, befriends its author, Erich Kästner, in the twilight of the Weimar Republic, the Third Reich ensues, boy tries to maintain ideals of novel versus increasingly awful reality. Having read the novel now, I can add a further parallel: both Friedrich in Frederick the Great Detective and Hans in Erich Kästner and Little Tuesday have an older sibling who is enthusastically joining the Nazi cause. My original suspicion as to why Kerr picked a fictional main character instead of Hans, who actually existed and did befriend Erich Kästner, was because Hans' fate was sealed by history, and that Kerr wanted a better fate for his young hero. Spoilers ensue. )However, by that point, I had already guessed various other reasons why Kerr chose a fictional over a fictionalized "real" main character, and the differences to Erich Kästner and Little Tuesday are instructive here.

For starters, there's the difference in focus: Erich Kästner and Little Tuesday is, as far as Hans is concerned, a coming of age story - he goes from child to teenager and young man in the course of the story - and has Erich Kästner as the other lead, whose perspective through the movie is even the slightly favored one. Frederick the Great Detective, by contrast, has Kästner only as a supporting character, aside from a prologue and an epilogue ends in late 1933/early 1934, and is above all a homage to Kästner's novel in structure, focusing on Friedrich and his same-age friends, who play detectives until it gets lethally dangerous. (The adults, whether benevolent or malignant or in between, are seen from the outside, the point of view is Friedrich's throughout.) For, befitting the author of the Gunther mysteries, there are actually cases to solve. (Though as opposed to Bernie, young Friedrich - who wants to become a detective through much of the novel - gets the point that you can't be a detective in a system where the criminals have taken over when Kästner desperately tells him just this.)

Indeed, while reading I wondered whether the basic idea for the novel might not have been a wish to write a sequel to Emil which tackles how Emil & Co. would act when the Third Reich starts, because Friedrich's gang with its twins has some similarities. Then again, Friedrich has a distinctly different background to Emil (or Hans Löhr) - no working class single parent mother, instead, middle class parents with his father a journalist and friend of Kästner's, which is the original connection, which allows Kerr to depict the way the press lost its freedom within a year. It also allows Kerr to let Friedrich and his parents vacation on Rügen where Friedrich meets Christopher Isherwood and Isherwood's boyfriend Heinz on the beach. (Leading to a charming scene where Friedrich manages to solve his very first case by finding Isherwood's lost watch.) Kerr provides quite a lot of real life characters making cameos throughout the novel - Billy Wilder (during the premiere of the "Emil and the Detectives" movie version which he scripted), Max Liebermann, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Walter Trier etc. - but the Isherwood cameo was for me the most vivid of these. (And I'm not surprised, having come across an interview where Kerr says bascially Berlin for him as a reader, before he got there, was invented by two British writers, Christopher Isherwood and John Le Carré.)

Kästner himself lis of course the real life character with the most page time, but he feels more like a generic version of Kästner's author persona than an actual attempt at depiction of the man. (As opposed to the Kästner in Erich Kästner and Little Tuesday.) Meaning: he's a benevolent adult the way, say, Justus the Teacher in "Das Fliegende Klassenzimmer" is, with no hint of any inner conflicts, and Kerr slims down the biographical and authorial data about him to "wrote Emil and the Detective, also works as a journalist"; in this book, there are no mentions of either Kästner's other books for children or his adult novel, Fabian (the one who got burned by the Nazis at the 1933 book burning), nor of his sharp political poetry (which in Germany he was and is almost as well known for as for his prose). (Hence ahistorically Emil ends up as the burned book, when in rl Emil and the Detectives was so popular that it got published, as the only one of Kästner's works, within Germany until 1936. Then it was for the axe as well.) The one biographical background fact about Kästner mentioned in conversation by Friedrich's father is in fact a wrong one, or rather, a wrong assumption, that Kästner's mother, like Emil's, raised her son alone. In rl, not only was Kästner's father around and in contact with his son, but he outlived Kästner's mother. There is, however, a reason why I didn't mind this particular wrong statement, which is: Kästner kept his father and his relationship with him very low key as long as his mother was still alive, while his relationship with his mother was intense and very public, so a colleague from work like Friedrich's father could be forgiven for assuming the guy was either dead or had left the family. ( If you've read Kästner's autobiographical writings, one of the most memorable childhood scenes which makes you cringe in sympathy is his parents' christmas competition about him, when his father, a craftsman, proudly presented presents he made with his own hand while his mother spent all her money on presents, and both parents would regard whichever present their son showed any favour to as proof whom he loved more or a rejection respectively. And thus it went on for as long as Kästner's mother lived.)

What the novel does really well, though, is presenting a group of children responding to their world changing radically, and Friedrich as a likeable child hero who ends up rejecting the demagogery, scapegoating and promise of glory that lures his older brother in because he sees how both people he knows and strangers are abused in its name. Again, in an homage to Kästner's novel which has a memorable dream sequence, Friedrich's ongoing crisis of conscience and wonder how to avoid becoming a Nazi himself climaxes in a surreal dream where the various things he has experienced come together. The lesson he draws from this is simple and profound at the same time, very Kästnerian and indeed great advice in current day circumstances as well, to the question as ow to act: Be kind. Being kind and you can't become what you fear and hate. Be kind.

Mind you, the 1945 prologue and epilogue does spoilery things ) But all in all, Frederick the Great Detective is still a very readable children's novel set in a dark time which also manages to pay homage to a classic while being its own thing.

(no subject)

Sep. 21st, 2017 10:55 pm
shadowkat: (Default)
[personal profile] shadowkat
1. Eww...really who wants to see a man put a digital tracking device up a woman's vagina in an action film?

2. There's nothing like a slew of bad reviews to make one curious about a movie or television series...I mean can it really be THAT bad? And if they network is cancelling it after 8 episodes yet still airing all 8 and even premiered it in IMAX..

3. Maybe it's just me, but this plot synopsis makes no sense


She had no idea what passion was,
Until she saw them…

Lady Alain needs a husband, and Quintin Wyntor will do just fine.

She will offer him a mutual agreement of respect and independence–
As long as he never visits her bed to claim his marital rights.

But seeing him with a man, with Calder, changes it all.
For better–and for worse.

Passion stirred.
Desire ignited.
And yet, she still never wants to touch or be touched.

But Quinn’s heart is shattered when his lover walks away so he decides to explore his feelings for Celeste to ease his broken heart.

In one unchecked moment of passion, mutual need spins out of control and bringing Calder home now may just be impossible.

Will Celeste give in to what Quinn wants for her?
Or will she stand her ground and hope they find another way…

This book is the story of Celeste and has her happily for now.
It is also the beginning of Calder and Quinn’s story which will be continued in THE SPARE AND THE HEIR.

This book is an autochorissexual romance (on the asexual spectrum) but contains important pieces of a gay romance. Both are explicit.

Warning: this book has a cliffhanger ending for Calder and Quinn, but is very much part of their story.


So guessing it's about a threesome? What the hell is autochorissexual??

And I need to stop buying books for .99 cents or 1.99 whenever they go on sale. [Clarification - I did not buy that one. Considering the synposis was giving me a headache.]

4. Reading The Princess Diarest...Carrie Fisher's memoir about the filming of Star Wars. She spends an entire chapter discussing lip gloss and another one discussing how the makeup artist styled her hair. Weird memoir.

(no subject)

Sep. 21st, 2017 07:04 am
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[personal profile] cactuswatcher
Hoping to put it off till some of the rush slowed down, I checked with Equifax this morning. Looks like I luckily was not one of the 100+ million whose data was affected. I do feel for all those who were!
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