STD "Choose Your Pain" Thoughts

Oct. 16th, 2017 09:38 pm
caitri: (World Is a Mess)
[personal profile] caitri
So this might actually be the most hopeful episode because it's all about escaping from different kinds of prisons; it's the sort of ep that shows off its complex writing, and you can really see through the intersecting layers of the story...and makes me look forward to reading the inevitable volumes of academic criticism.


Holly Poly

Oct. 16th, 2017 10:14 pm
settiai: (Numinous World -- settiai)
[personal profile] settiai
Whoever nominated all of the Numinous World relationships for Holly Poly, I love you. ♥

(If it's not someone reading this, I'm going to be very surprised. Impressed, but surprised.)

RIP Roy Dotrice

Oct. 16th, 2017 08:38 pm
aota: (Crash)
[personal profile] aota
Sad to hear about Roy Dotrice passing. Was first introduced to him when he was on Space 1999. He always played great character roles. His reading of the Song of Ice and Fire books were great. RIP.

Why I am Still Married to This Man

Oct. 16th, 2017 05:37 pm
reynardine: (hallowcat_pumpkin)
[personal profile] reynardine
Bob got in a new fez today (an early birthday present). He is so adorkable. He has a number of fezzes--when he remembers, he wears them when he is running tabletop games.

ankh_hpl: (Default)
[personal profile] ankh_hpl
Midnight Crossroad (Midnight, Texas #1)Midnight Crossroad by Charlaine Harris

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I read this because I enjoyed the TV series Midnight, Texas a lot this past summer, and was curious about the novels that inspired this series. So far, I've only read the first of three, but can already report that the reading experience was much different than the viewing experience.

The viewing experience, for me, was a fast, fun, guilty-pleasure throwback to shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Midnight Crossroad is more like reading an occult-flavored cozy mystery. The same cast of characters is involved -- though a couple of them are not the same ethnicity as they were in the series -- and the mystery will be familiar to series viewers. However, not all of the characters' occult identities are fully revealed. This might be interesting for those who have watched the series, but confusing for others.

I also noticed several abrupt switches of viewpoint during the novel, sometimes without a great deal of warning. It was always clear whose viewpoint the reader was getting, but I wasn't always sure why Harris had chosen to switch POV at that particular point.

I'm not sure how much of my mixed reaction to this mystery was due to previous exposure to the series, but I found it to be a rather toned-down and somewhat confusing read. Those new to the Midnight world might have an entirely different experience.

View all my reviews

Dad Update

Oct. 16th, 2017 10:05 am
reynardine: (hallow_witch_walking_cat)
[personal profile] reynardine
Latest on Dad--he is in the ICU again. He does have some kind of infection and so it's anti-biotics, plus fluids because he's so dehydrated. Per my mom, he doesn't feel any better this morning. My brother took the day off and is with them. Mom is supposed to call me with any news.

And Dad is Back in the Hospital

Oct. 15th, 2017 09:05 pm
reynardine: (facepalm_nami)
[personal profile] reynardine
My mother called about 6 pm. She took Dad to the emergency room. He was supposed to have a heart procedure on Monday (delayed from last week because he had a cold), but evidently he's much sicker than that. Sick enough that he agreed to go to the emergency room, and sick enough that he let HER drive. He must be feeling awful. He hates letting anybody else drive!

He's being kept overnight for observation and was put on fluids. He's lost 14 lbs in the past week and is very dehydrated. The emergency room doctor thinks it may be an infection but they need to do more tests. He's landed in the ICU three times with "an infection", so it's serious. At least this time he had the sense to go in before he collapsed.

It's hard to think of my dad as frail, but with all he's been through, he is. I had myself a good cry, and now I'm trying to get back to normal. As per usual, they don't want me coming down there. I'd be in the way*. We're scheduled to visit them next month anyway and Dad much prefers to be at home when we come down. Last time he did the ICU thing, and we came down while he was in the rehab place, it drove him crazy. He wanted to be at home with us.

*I don't know my way around the city where they live very well--they moved there eight or nine years ago. My brother lives about 10 minutes away from them, so there IS close family nearby.

**Hell, yeah, feeling the Guilt. But it's their call.
reynardine: (musicals)
[personal profile] reynardine
I watched the live-action Beauty and the Beast musical (the one with Emma Watson). OMG, it was awful. I mean, painfully bad. I've seen both the original animated movie and the stage version, and this was far inferior. They took out some of the better songs and replaced them with this forgettable treacle-crap. Even the songs they kept were done badly, with awkward interruptions in the songs that threw them off. The worst thing about the movie was the pacing--it was like everything was slowed down or something.

Emma Watson can sing, but her acting was wooden. Dan Stevens, who can act, is a passable singer, but his pleasant tenor isn't the right range for the Beast. The song they kept from the animated film could adjust, but the gorgeous "If I Can't Love Her" from the stage play was cut, and I'm guessing it may have been due to the fact that it is a baritone showcase song. Luke Evans did alright as Gaston (who is a campy character no matter who plays him), but again, not the strong voice we expect from Gaston.

That's an issue I've seen in a lot of recent musicals--casting well-known talent who can "kinda" sing. In old Hollywood musicals, they tended to dub those actors' singing (RIP Marni Nixon!), but that is frowned upon in these modern times. It's too bad--so many movies could improve by it. There are some exceptions--the film versions of Chicago and Rent--but they are far outnumbered by the awful film versions of Les Miserables (I cried, it was so bad), Into The Woods, and now, Beauty and the Beast.

I don't know, maybe it's a conspiracy to get people to come back to the theatres?

Obiter Dicta: Half-Asleep Edition

Oct. 14th, 2017 02:14 pm
reynardine: (akikawa_nikki)
[personal profile] reynardine
Strange weather continues. It's warm and muggy, but a cold front is supposed to push through later today, along with a round of strong thunderstorms. It's tried to rain a couple of times already, but it's not quite time yet. You can feel the pressure building.

Life on the prairie. You learn to feel these things after awhile.

When the storm does hit, I'll put Tsuki away in the bedroom and let Ryoko free. Poor cat is afraid of storms, whereas Tsuki doesn't much care. She'll just climb under the covers of our bed and go to sleep.

I was up with the dawn, as usual, but then dozed off in the comfy chair. Trying to get some things done around the house, but spacing things out. I'm running on the low side right now. It's a natural cycle (happens every autumn), so I try to just work with it until it passes.

The grumpy mailguy is back. I happened to be at the mailbox when he drove up (usually he's there earlier on Saturdays). He chatted with me while he sorted, since he saw from the Archdiocesan newsletter (the "Archbishop's Snooze-letter" in his parlance) that I was Catholic. He asked some pointed questions about the new parish, about which there has been controversy. I told him what little I know, we meet in a elementary school gym, no plans have been mentioned for building yet, but some farmer donated land several years ago, so there is a site. Turns out he goes to the Latin Mass, which probably means he's SSPX. No wonder he's so bitchy.

Dad is still down with that cold/flu/whatever. His heart procedure was delayed until Monday, and he's determined to go in. Mom has decided to let him, and then if it turns out he has pneumonia again, they'll just keep him there. He's so stubborn! Mom was also sick, but sounded much better today. That trip they took last month really wore them out.

The first two episodes of Mindhunter (on Netflix) were quite good, although very, very dark. The writing and acting are top notch, and the costumes and art production are very good. The series is set in the late 1970's, an era I'm old enough to remember quite clearly. What really caught my eye is the cinematography--the color filters they used remind me of photographs I have from that time. It's a subtle touch, but brilliant. It's not a detective show in the purest sense, but more like the true crime genre.

Virtual Garage Sale

Oct. 14th, 2017 02:24 pm
settiai: (Garrus -- bleeding_muse)
[personal profile] settiai
I know that most of you are probably getting sick of seeing me mention it, but I promise that this will be the last time that I post a link to my virtual garage sale post. That said, if any of you know someone who might potentially be interested in anything listed there, please feel free to pass along the link. I'd really appreciate it.

Also, if anyone knows someone who might be interested in a Roomba (which is listed on that post), please let me know. I'm very much willing to haggle on the price since it's used, but selling it would help me immensely since it's basically the only "big ticket" (so to speak) item that I have left to try selling.

I'm less than $200 away from having enough to cover all of the various bills that will come out of my checking account on November 1st, and from that point forward my finances should be in a much better state. I get three paychecks in November, which is ridiculously helpful all on its own, and I should be getting both a holiday bonus and a raise in December. Add in the tax refund that I should be getting at the beginning of 2018, and for the first time in ages I'm actually not completely panicking about the state of my life in general.

Flu Shot

Oct. 14th, 2017 01:41 am
aota: (work)
[personal profile] aota
Got my annual flu shot from work today. No adverse effects yet.

Goodbye, Facebook

Oct. 13th, 2017 12:56 pm
reynardine: (nya_nya)
[personal profile] reynardine
Well, I did it. I deleted my Facebook account.

The platform was just getting too toxic for me, and yet I was wasting too much time on it. I want to do more with my life. The whole excuse about contacting family was blown away when my cousin was hospitalized, and yet it didn't show up in my feed--my mom had to tell me about it on the phone. My posts don't show up in her feed unless she goes and looks for them.

The whole thing about the Russians messing with the platform was icing on the cake. I've been battling with FB for years over privacy settings (and how they seem to forget them when they update, so I have to reset mine a few times a year).

I kept on there for a long time because I felt like I was being left out if I wasn't on there, but that's what Facebook wants you to believe, while they shower you with ads and make money on your back. No more.

I am free.

Still in a Trek frame of mind...

Oct. 12th, 2017 07:27 pm
sueworld: Heart (Default)
[personal profile] sueworld
I saw this excellent article online comparing all The Star Trek title sequences including Star Trek Discovery and the excellent The Orville.

I've included a separate link to the Discovery opening (which I've posted before I know) as the one embedded on this site is region locked and those in the UK can't play it.

Interesting to note that a few effects people/writers who worked on Next Gen also worked on the Orville, and imo It shows....

Dusk Maiden of Amnesia, episode 3

Oct. 12th, 2017 12:33 pm
witchcat07: (Default)
[personal profile] witchcat07
Dusk Maiden of Amnesia, episode 3:
Maiden of a Chance Meeting

In this episode we are not quite caught up with the timeline of episode 1, we still have to meet Kirie Kanoe. She catches up with Teiichi to tell him he is in danger from an evil spirit, i.e . Yuuko. He has a tough time believing this, but notes that Kirie's family name is the same as Yuuko's. Kirie reveals that her grandmother was the younger sister of the student who is rumored to have died at the school, Yuuko Kanoe. Kirie can see the ghost, but not as Teiichi does. When he tells her he found the place where Yuuko's body is hidden, she insists they must remove it at once and thus expel the spirit. Yuuko tries to prevent them, mainly because of her hang up over Teiichi seeing her bones, though she is also unhappy about Kirie's intrusion. Kirie describes to Teiichi how Yuuko appears to her, lank black hair, malevolent red eyes, skin the color of dirt, with a smell of rotting flesh, and Teiichi begins to see her that way, too. Yuuko's anguish frightens Kirie, but Teiichi makes an effort and brings back to his mind the vision of loveliness that he had first seen as Yuuko, He then joins Kirie in the basement where he takes a closer look at the remains and sees that the lower leg bones are broken. Looking past the body, he and Kirie see that there is an old shrine down here, and they recall that the school was built on the site of an old shrine. Now they begin to wonder if Yuuko's death was an accident or not.

This episode was particularly creepy, and the animation effects they used for evil spirit Yuuko were very effective.They don't really address Yuuko's evil spirit aspect any more at this point, but you get the impression we are not done with that idea, and this is why I ended up watching most of the show in one sitting the first time.

Dusk Maiden of Amnesia, episode 2

Oct. 11th, 2017 10:19 pm
witchcat07: (Default)
[personal profile] witchcat07
Dusk Maiden of Amnesia, Episode 2:
Maiden of a Chance Meeting

We backtrack in the story line to when Teiichi first met Yuuko. He was wandering around lost in an old, disused part of the school, thinking about the school's history and the ghost stories associated with it. He is starting to get himself a little worked up over the latter when he comes to an old supply room with a mirror which he suspects to be the one mentioned in one of the ghost stories. This is when Yuuko Kanoe shows up and freaks him out. But he doesn't believe she is a ghost at first, because she is very solid; she can touch him and he can touch her. Invariably whenever he reaches out to touch her he ends up grabbing her somewhere he shouldn't. That, and the fact that she is not at all shy about disrobing in front of him make him very nervous around her. (Well, he's just a freshman, and she is a fifteen year old girl who has been haunting the school for 60 years, she may be a little more worldly)

Teiichi is curious about Yuuko's past, so she puts up a sign on the storage closet where he first encountered her proclaiming it to be the meeting place of the paranormal activity investigation club. Their first customer is Momoe, who is afraid she is cursed because she was playing one of those games kids play to try to conjure spirits. In this case she labeled a little bunny doll with the name Yuuko and played hide and seek with it, the point being, if you can't find the bunny, Yuuko will haunt you. She can't find the bunny because Yuuko found it and took it because it had her name on it. (Duh) In order to put Momoe's fears to rest, Teiichi performs an "exorcism" of the bunny, with Yuuko pretending to be an evil spirit. There is a split screen here showing Yuuko as Teiichi sees her (a school girl in a white robe) and as Momoe sees her (a malevolent darkness rimmed with red) because that is what she is expecting. They both play their parts well, and Momoe goes away satisfied, but she comes back the next day wanting to join the paranormal club, and thus it begins.

Also in this episode Teiichi discovers Yuuko's remains. Behind the mirror in the storage room he finds a door to a basement. Yuuko tries to prevent him from going down and he falls down the stairs. He catches a glimpse of a skeleton in a school uniform before he is distracted by Yuuko's hysteria. She is as embarrassed about him finding her bones as he is about seeing her naked. She is kinda strange that way.

In this episode we again have a legend that has sprung up about the school ghost get debunked by the actual ghost. We also begin to learn a little more about Yuuko, which is set as the goal of the story. The general tone of the show is equal parts creepy and playful, very atmospheric, and with beautiful animation. Since it has been so long since I saw it the first time, and also since I had not seen it dubbed, it's almost like seeing it brand new. :)

Star Trek Discovery....

Oct. 11th, 2017 07:45 pm
sueworld: Heart (Default)
[personal profile] sueworld
Well the ST fandom seems to be spit into two angry little camps over this show at the moment, and as I'm finding it very difficult to communicate my thought properly about any damn thing I thought I'd be lazy and let this Youtube Video speak for me, because I agree with nearly all his points and think It's one of the more balanced takes on this series.

Life and stuff on a Wednesday

Oct. 11th, 2017 09:38 am
seren_ccd: (Miranda Get in!)
[personal profile] seren_ccd
Hello! *waves* I've been neglecting this journal and I don't mean to. I'd like to post more, but the day always seems to get away from me.

So, here are my usual five things!

1. My husband and I have definitely separated and will be filing for divorce one of these days. It's been hard but also good. We still chat and email and things are actually pretty darn all right. We were having coffee one day, looked at each other and went, 'whoa, we've done the right thing, haven't we?' I feel positive about more things now and it's been incredible to just have time to myself and to relearn who I can be and what I can do without having to worry about him. I'm working really hard at my job and taking on all sorts of responsibilites and actually getting recognized for them, in fact...

2. I'M GOING TO NEW ZEALAND IN JANUARY!!! The company I work for is based there and we're the European branch. They've received some new investment money and will be making some changes and they want me to go over and sit down with the team. Eeeeeee! I'm going to Middle Earth!!! I'll be mainly on the South Island near Dunedin, but I've already looked at day trips in the area. I can't wait. I'm also hoping to stop in Melbourne, Australia to see some family there.

Things are happening in very cool ways for me and I'm feeling really grateful for all the hard work that I've put in. You do all these things. You show up. You put in the hours. You're supportive and you work hard and honestly, most of the time, I never expect to see any kind of reward for it. When a reward actually happens, my first instinct is to actually go: Are you sure? Has there been some sort of mistake here?


I'm trying to squash that and just go with it.

3. I'm actually exercising. Yep. It's a 'boot camp' that's run two weeks every month from 6.30am-7.30am on the seafront and it's great. The ladies are wonderful and supportive and I have so much more energy and it's not in a gym. I mean, I still hate burpees and jogging, but I'd rather hate them outside than in a gym.

4. Oh, God, I'm so close to having this novel thing done I can taste it. I almost have it ready for some poor soul to read it. (If anyone wants to read this thing and be totally honest about what they think, let me know!)

5. That being said, I hope to finish that and then do something completely different for Nanowrimo. I have a standalone idea that I'd like to run with and see what happens.

I think that's enough for a Wednesday. All the positivity aside, things are still scary and I'm worried most of the time about the world and everyone in it. I hope you're all all right and making it through the days. Take care of yourselves! ♥

I Want to Write a Venting Post

Oct. 10th, 2017 03:37 pm
caitri: (Status Not Quo)
[personal profile] caitri
But 1) I don't have the energy, and 2) don't feel like wasting energy on people that don't deserve it. Suffice to say that I am Incredibly Annoyed at People Who Are Wrong on the Internet.

In other news, Scott's off to Spain (didn't he pick a great time to go, just when Catalonia is voting for independence and their are violent crackdowns and whatnot?) and I'm off to a conference the day after tomorrow. I think my nerves are getting worse; I started feeling anxious about my trip yesterday. My flights will be in the 3-3 1/2 hour range and I feel sick, and I'm thinking about submitting to a conference in England next year which would be a good 10 hours or whatever. (I have no idea how I survived my trip to Japan a decade ago. Oh wait, I was young and not an anxious stressball. What was that like again?)

I continue to be behind on All the Things. I'll find a way to finish them, but everything seems hard. Oy.

Stary Olsa

Oct. 9th, 2017 10:36 pm
reynardine: (party_girl)
[personal profile] reynardine

We went to downtown Kansas City tonight to a little bar to see a medieval band from Belarus named Stary Olsa. I never was one much for bars--I used to go to them sometimes at University since Austin was (and still is) a big music town, but after that, it would only be if I knew someone in the band.

It's better now since they don't allow smoking in bars anymore, but the noise and crowds bother me enough that it's usually not worth the bother. If I like a band, I'll buy their music and support them that way.

However, when I heard Stary Olsa was playing a venue in Kansas City--and a regular bar at that, not the KC Renaissance Faire--I decided it would be worthwhile to go. I was a bit anxious about crowds, but figured there wouldn't be a lot of people on a Monday night.

And there wasn't a big crowd. I think maybe 25-30 people were there, and that included the people working at the bar. The place (recordBar) is tiny, so it's just as well. I think most of the audience were SCAdian, although I didn't recognize everyone. Giraude and her husband, GianLupo, were there, as was Konstantia. I saw Gwen's husband (she had a delay at work and couldn't make it), but he wouldn't know me from Adam.

The band was FANTASTIC. Lots of verve and energy! They are used to playing larger venues (I've seen videos of them playing festivals in Europe) so this was probably a change for them, but they were professionals and gave us their best. They mostly play medieval music, but a couple of years ago, they did a modern song on medieval instruments as a joke, and the video went viral, so they did a Kickstarter and got enough funding to make an album of the modern music.

Personally, I prefer the medieval stuff, but Bob really got a kick out of the modern tunes. Californication was...okay, but not the best. However, Iron Man (originally by Black Sabbath) and Highway to Hell (ACDC) actually sound really good when played on a hurdy-gurdy, go figure.

It was a fun date night. Tomorrow is our 19th wedding anniversary!

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