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insufferable know-it-all
1. It's pretty great so far! Nice to confirm. I know lots of fellow fans like it, but lots of fans like things I don't, too, and I trailed off after the first few Temeraires, so you never know. Clear storytelling, vibrant setting, central female friendship, great creepiness with the Woods, clam dude with better sexual tension than other books I've read lately. *cough Discovery of Witches*

2. Trying to figure out who the Dragon reminds me of besides fanon!Snape. It's someone/something I read or saw recently but I can't put my finger on it. ETA: & no, it is not Rodney McKay. ETA ETA: Ah! Got it: Twelfth Doctor.

3. If I were to ask for anything different, it would be to reverse the gender stereotypes so the man isn't the one being all logic-methodical and the young woman isn't the one going by loosey-goosey instinct. But at the same time, that wouldn't make as much sense for the plot, unless the woman were the experienced wizard and the man were the apprentice, and then we wouldn't have a female protagonist, which is generally so refreshing. And I do like the matrilineal (if that is the right word) descent of the spells Agnieszka uses.

Originally posted at http://bironic.dreamwidth.org/322330.html, where there are comment count unavailable comments.
insufferable know-it-all
25 August 2015 @ 04:47 pm
My last major summer work project should be done a week from now, and that will be nice for enjoying leisure activities again. Like mulling over [community profile] festivids fandoms. And reading books.

Actually, I have to read Uprooted before Monday because it came in at the library and you only get 7 days for new books that are in demand. After that, I’d like to try some of Patrick O’Brian’s Aubrey/Maturin novels and find out whether they are as lulling as the good fanfic. And am so looking forward to the release of Ancillary Mercy in October, preceded by a reread of the first two in the series. Sometime during the fall, will get around to The Chronicles of Prydain for book club. Did any of you read it when you were younger?

Not taking work home will also mean more time for moving around. Elle n’est pas très athlétique, mais elle essaie.

1. The autumn gym class schedule was posted and it is disappointing. Alas. I will either try some new classes or find alternatives.

2. Such as those tennis Meetups. Although tennis thoughts are on hold on account of I can’t find my racket/racquet.

3. Badminton club also an appealing option.

4. Could try picking up Irish dance again with the hope that it doesn’t tighten up my hips like last time, but that is $.


In the meantime, my mom came to visit and we had a nice weekend in western Mass. admiring Impressionist paintings and modern glass sculptures and attending Film Night at Tanglewood with the Boston Pops, incl. live scores to Star Trek and Jaws, and violinist Gil Shaham looking like RSL.Collapse )


It’s tradition to watch at least some Star Trek whenever my mom and I get together. This time she voted for Space Seed. After that, I could only request The Chest Wrath of Khan*, especially since it’s next on the rewatch list with [profile] ignazwisdom. Still so much love and admiration for that film. Notes perhaps to follow.

*™ director Nicholas Meyer


Internet is down at home so I am posting this from work. (Shh.) Replies may be delayed depending on how daunting it seems to type on the phone keyboard.

Originally posted at http://bironic.dreamwidth.org/322283.html, where there are comment count unavailable comments.
insufferable know-it-all
17 August 2015 @ 08:42 pm

I have mostly recovered from Vividcon. I think. Wed-Thu-Fri-Sat evenings I did things with people, and work is busy, so it's taken a while. Haven't yet watched most of the vids I missed, and need to respond to those of you who were kind enough to comment on the con report.


Started one of the last readily available Paul Bettany movies this weekend, an English miniseries from 1998 called Coming Home. It appears to be about adopted families and class tensions and WWII and coming of age and love.

Baby Keira Knightley played the main character in the first part and she was adorable and had chemistry with everybody. Then she got replaced by baby Emily Mortimer playing the same character "two years" older*, because baby Keira Knightley I guess was too young to be shown kissing Paul Bettany, and as is usually the way with these sorts of things, it was hard to transfer affection from one actress to another. Emily Mortimer's face and hair here put me off.

*EM is 14 years older than KK

Funny how in the beginning of his film career PB seems to have gotten cast as either a gangster/hitman/street punk or a pretty love interest, or sometimes both at once. Here he is the love interest, or one of them; there is a love triangle I am pretending will end in a threesome even though it won't. In fact, I don't think he's in the second half of the miniseries at all. (ETA: Incorrect.) He spent a lot of time in the first half smoking cigarettes and looking apologetic for being so tall.

Despite the somewhat stilted acting and the preponderance of too-quick scenes that result from a book adaptation, overall it is a pleasant period drama (er, aside from one uncomfortable plotline that is over now) and I am looking forward to receiving the next hour and a half from Netflix.


Tried a new Zumba class this evening. First time I've gone to a fitness class in a while, and it felt good. Will try to go again tomorrow, since it's only on the gym schedule Mon-Tue right now. [personal profile] thedeadparrot is inspiring.

After (re)watching Wimbledon as part of this marathon, I started to dream about playing tennis, which I haven't played in something like 10 years. It's too expensive and country-club-feeling to get access to the courts at work even with staff affiliation, and I don't think any local friends play with whom I could go use community courts--correct me if I'm wrong--but I found some tennis Meetup groups this weekend and plan to check them out when the timing and locations are right. Hopefully one will work so I can brush up on my skills without annoying my partner(s) and can add something different to the activity rotation.

(There hasn't been much activity at all lately, which doubtless explains why when I'm not at cons or neck deep in a work project, I've been feeling fairly blah.)


It's hot. It's August. Alas. The good news is that when my mom comes to visit this weekend, temps are supposed to fall from 95 to 80ish. Better hope of good sleeping. If the weather holds, we will enjoy a treat: John Williams' Film Night on the lawn at Tanglewood (although due to an injury, Keith Lockhart will conduct in his place). The program was great fun last year at Symphony Hall.


We shall close with a couple of video clips akin to what [personal profile] thedeadparrot and I saw on Saturday at an event called Ignite!, which involved fiery arts by members of the Boston Circus Guild such as flaming hula hoops and a flaming ball on a chain. Flaming swordfight and flaming whip were two of my favorites. There is something about controlled fire in the darkness that gets you right in the hindbrain. Here are some more clips, including a dude dressed like Petyr Baelish.

I'd like to say it nudged me toward working on the last Dustfinger fic, which will be OT4 that builds on the canonical m/m soulbonding, but there's too much else going on right now.

Originally posted at http://bironic.dreamwidth.org/321995.html, where there are comment count unavailable comments.
insufferable know-it-all
13 August 2015 @ 09:57 pm
(Not that there is a lot of time right now, but)

Would anyone be interested if I did this?

"I currently have 104 fanworks archived at the AO3. Pick a number from 1 (the most recent) to 104 (the first thing I posted there), and I'll tell you three things I currently like about it."

Hey, p.s., people who are also doing this meme: How do you quickly get AO3 to tell you what number a particular work is in your collection? I only know how to see that for series.

Originally posted at http://bironic.dreamwidth.org/321655.html, where there are comment count unavailable comments.
insufferable know-it-all
11 August 2015 @ 09:03 pm
I laughed, I cried, I marveled at people's skills. Or: favorite new & new-to-me vids of those I saw at the con. I only went to two of the ten non-plenary vid shows, so there will surely be more to rec from the streams/DVDs. Stay tuned.

*denotes super-favorites

25 recs + commentaryCollapse )

Will add the rest of the links as they become available. Will also follow up with recs from the vid shows I haven't yet seen, including a good chunk of Club Vivid.

See also: half a dozen recs in yesterday's con report.

Meanwhile, a full list of what showed at VVC can be found at http://vividcon.info/.

Originally posted at http://bironic.dreamwidth.org/321458.html, where there are comment count unavailable comments.
Tags: ,
insufferable know-it-all
10 August 2015 @ 08:01 pm
I had a great time at Vividcon this weekend. It was my third time going, over a span of six years, and each one has felt more comfortable than the last. I learn more about the history of vidding and vidders and pick up more skills and get to know more people, or get to know people better.

This year's new experience was encountering again and again people's love for Starships. It just fills my heart with joy that it makes people so happy, and it's surreal (but also a thrill) to, for example, hear it mentioned as an annual Club Vivid favorite, or to learn that it was included in a suite of vids that helped convince a college to archive older fanvids. Although I have not yet learned how to react to effusive compliments, eep.

Social-type highlights of the con: cosplay, Shabbat, conversation, and moreCollapse )

PanelsCollapse )

And with that, I am out of brain. Choosing to blame all the adjectives and "to be" constructions in this post on the fact that I haven't had a full night's sleep in a week! Vid recs to follow at some point here.

ETA: Other people's con reports: giandujakiss, kass, sheafrotherdon, jetpack_monkey, ghost-lingering on the fandom-specific panels

Originally posted at http://bironic.dreamwidth.org/321047.html, where there are comment count unavailable comments.
insufferable know-it-all
Title: Feels So Electric
Fandoms: Hahaha. Multi. See complete list below.
Music: "Electric" by the DNC feat. Miss Amani
Length: 4:10
Summary: "Pure electricity. In my pants."
Content notes: A lot of flickering lights. Some quickish zooms and pans, if motion effects on still images bother you. A few clips depict nonconsensual zapping.
Dedication: For Club Vivid 2015 & Kink Bingo. Also on AO3.

AcknowledgementsCollapse )

Embed, download, lyricsCollapse )

Or: What happens when you want to make a vid of the movie Powder and then find a song that invites you to add a few more sources...

Comments and concrit are always welcome as I try to improve my vidding.

x-posted to vidding (DW), vidding (LJ), Tumblr

Originally posted at http://bironic.dreamwidth.org/320987.html, where there are comment count unavailable comments.
insufferable know-it-all
26 July 2015 @ 05:16 pm
And the weekend has gone very well so far. A few cards, messages and calls from friends and family, a few gifts tangible and intangible. Houseguest Friday-Saturday and fangirl movie party last night (Kingsmen: The Secret Service). Today I scored free breakfast at IHOP for a treat and then went with childhood friend C. to Revere Beach, where they were holding a sand sculpting competition. The forecast has been calling for scattered thunderstorms, but we gave it a shot and were pleased to find it didn't rain on us. Indeed, we passed a lovely couple of hours checking out the entries, walking along the ocean, chatting and grabbing lunch from two of the many food trucks.

Here are pictures of some of my favorite sculptures. One was called "Beauty and the Bot"; another was "Love is Eternal."

Insert Ozymandias reference if you desireCollapse )

Dinner with C. and her husband in a little while at a fancy place in Harvard Square neither of us has tried. Hopefully the food will live up to the restaurant's reputation. Even if not, it should be an enjoyable time. In general this weekend, keeping busy (but not too busy) has been good.

While we're doing a picture post, here are some nice ones from July 4. Taken from a boat with my mom and her bf: sunset followed by a beautiful fireworks display.

"How meta", said my sister of the firstCollapse )

Originally posted at http://bironic.dreamwidth.org/320327.html, where there are comment count unavailable comments.
insufferable know-it-all
23 July 2015 @ 08:46 pm

We are reading China Mountain Zhang by Maureen McHugh for book club. (wiki) It's got excellent worldbuilding and a braid of engrossing character- and culture clash-driven stories, but the constant comma splices are driving me up the wall. There's at least one per page. Here is a sample passage:
I head north up Daqing Lu, the street is lined with stores. I stop and look in windows, the prices are ghastly. I have some of my Baffin Island salary on credit plus a stipend from the University. Because I study technology, my only cost was getting here, the rest is scholarship. Getting here was expensive enough.
Really not my style. It has to be deliberate style; there are too many of them to be editing errors. Although my copy does have a handful of typos as well, like "peal" for "peel" (twice), or, ironically enough, missing commas, as in "Hainandao. The name means South Sea Island. The first character, 'hai' means 'sea.'" It's enough to make it read like a self-published novel, grammatically, except for how it won the Tiptree award and was nominated for the Hugo and Nebula and was published by Tor/edited by Patrick Nielsen Hayden. Strange.


Started watching Agent Carter after seeing the adorable dubsmash war clips from Hayley Atwell and James D'Arcy on Twitter/Tumblr. Have now seen the first three eps with a fellow fan's help. Quite enjoyable. High production values, unsurprisingly, and, as people like [personal profile] no_detective promised, solid, women-driven storytelling. I'm only surprised not to be enjoying buttoned-up Jarvis more as Peggy's boy Friday. Maybe I like my D'Arcy ruffled and smiling in a t-shirt. However, I did relish the scene where he put on glasses and stitched up Peggy's leg. Peggy is fabulous. She should hang out with Phryne Fisher.


In less exciting news, we have achieved a new low in the dwindling Paul Bettany project: Mood Swingers, apparently a.k.a. Dead Babies. Bleh. Body horror and unsexy nudity and hallucinations and recreational drugs and occasional manic editing and general grossness and I just, not my thing. A little like David Cronenberg without deeper meaning and with low production quality. No, I can't even make that comparison; I probably only watched about 10 minutes total, fast-forwarding through the rest, whereas Cronenberg's stuff is good, if hard to watch. It wasn't just the teeth falling out and the barf and the needles and the entrails and the peeing and the tedious dialogue and the boobs, it's that it wasn't good. Compare to, say, DC's Crash, or Aronofsky's Requiem for a Dream. Rather: no comparison.

Two decent visuals: Young, lean Paul Bettany wearing lipstick in one scene and playing badminton in another. The latter was edited in such a way that he probably only had to actually hit the shuttle twice, but his follow-through was elegant.

*shakes head at self*

Originally posted at http://bironic.dreamwidth.org/320159.html, where there are comment count unavailable comments.