Sparkly and I went to see WWE live with Cube Guy. It was fantastically horrifyingly loud, which I foolishly did not expect-- "They only have music for like 60 seconds at a time when the wrestlers enter at the start of the match, the music is not the main point, it won't be loud," I thought-- well, it was loud, and also they play some of the same advertisements / previews they put on TV on the screens in the arena during breaks. 

Honestly WWE is fascinating and there are so many things to analyze about it, but I'm still kind of tired and I also had a busy day today, so I'll save that for a later date. 

Tuesday Yardening

  • Jul. 25th, 2017 at 5:31 PM
Today is sunny and mild.  I went out and picked a few blackberries.  My partner Doug mowed grass, and I walked around to see where it was done. 

EDIT 7/25/17: We went out and picked up a pile of grass.  Then I did some weeding in the septic garden.

EDIT 7/25/17: I finished weeding the septic garden.  *goflopnow*

ReActivate

  • Jul. 25th, 2017 at 3:09 PM
The PADI ReActivate course is (currently) really common-sense. Then I just have to go by the dive shop I made my 'home' dive shop and see about getting dives set up with a Master Diver.

My thought is I'll 'ReActivate' all my past certifications first, then see if I can knock them all out in the same few dives. (I only had three.) Then I'll start getting involved with the dive clubs in Orange County.

Then after that I want to start doing specialty courses - especially wreck diver and cavern diver. But I'll probably focus on a few of the easier ones first, e.g. Underwater photography.




The flight school responded to tell me they don't sell dollar-value gift certificates online but if I visit them I can get a dollar-value gift certificate there. So what I'll do is go down there to do a tandem flight, and each time I do, I'll have $200-$400 to put on a gift certificate toward the P1 + P2 certification combo.




I was thinking about trying to apologize to Jordan and telling him he really doesn't need to avoid me at work. Like, my feelings will recover (I think they would have already if it hadn't been his avoidance at work.)

But I'd already told him that. So instead I guess I'll just try to practice MYOB: Mind Your Own Business. Eventually he'll either stop avoiding me, or one of us won't work in the shopping center anymore.




In the meantime... Time to go to work.

Day Off

  • Jul. 25th, 2017 at 10:28 PM
I ended up in town anyway because it was nice to have a walk and because I got to have coffee with [personal profile] keziath that way :)

Pokémon have been caught, comics have been read, pottering about has been achieved. And Kheldar was generous enough to reduce me to fits of giggles while he was basking on the balcony. His paws twitched. His tail twitched. His tail was expertly bought under control so that the important business of sleeping in the sun could continue. After a few minutes he raised his head, rested it on the side of his water bowl and fell asleep again.

Sploosh!

And now I know why my cat occasionally turns up with a damp head when the rest of him is dry. We have the best Kheldar. The best.

Inspirations

  • Jul. 25th, 2017 at 9:59 PM
Talking Pictures Tv have recently shown an episode of Colonel March of Scotland Yard dealing with an attempt to sell multiple copies of the Mona Lisa to different buyers. Can't help but wonder if this was ever on Douglas Adam's viewing of an evening.

I'm also curious whether Dennis Potter ever watched Dick Barton - Special Agent. There's been a night club singer mixed up with a criminal gang, a gangster double act called Titch and Lofty and some incidental music that I'm sure ended up in The Singing Detective.

Poetry Fishbowl on Tuesday, August 1

  • Jul. 25th, 2017 at 2:47 PM
This is an advance announcement for the Tuesday, August 1, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. This time the theme will be "rites / rights." I'll be soliciting ideas for adolescents, parents, heroes, villains, fools, clergy and other officiants, explorers, travelers, ordinary people, outcasts, facing thresholds, questioning, debating labels, traveling, accepting the call, refusing the call, getting lost, losing everything, hiding in the closet, coming out, finding your power, speaking truth to power, telling your own story, discovering new places, bedrooms, classrooms, counseling offices, churches, government buildings, the wilderness, cliffs, trails, self-discovery, self-awareness, birth, puberty, getting a job, marriage, sex, parenthood, death, rebirth, radical transformation, the hero's journey, birth control, reproductive freedom, alien transitions, self-sacrifice, disruptions, adventures, legal rights, famous geographic passageways, and poetic forms in particular.

I have a linkback poem, "Rewriting the Narrative" (9 verses, standalone). 

If you're interested, mark the date on your calendar, and please hold actual prompts until the "Poetry Fishbowl Open" post next week.  (If you're not available that day, or you live in a time zone that makes it hard to reach me, you can leave advance prompts.  I am now.)  Meanwhile, if you want to help with promotion, please feel free to link back here or repost this on your blog. 

New to the fishbowl?  Read all about it! )

Poetry Fishbowl Themes for Late 2017

  • Jul. 25th, 2017 at 2:13 PM
The poll has concluded. These are the upcoming themes:

August 1
Rites / rights of passage

September 5
Families of Choice

October 3
Otherkin and Other-nesses

November 7
Outlandish Occupations

December 5
Hearth and Home

January 2, 2018
Do you believe in magic?

Jul. 25th, 2017

  • 11:06 AM
Some Harry spam. Click on thumbnail to see full-sized pic. Sorry about the rug! I vacuumed up a large glass bead that H just dislodged this morning lol.





Boekrecensie: "Tamar" (Monique Hoolt)

  • Jul. 25th, 2017 at 8:02 PM
(Ik heb geen/zo min mogelijk spoilers in mijn recensie geschreven)

Titel: Tamar (op Hebban.nl, op Goodreads)
Auteur: Monique Hoolt
Taal: Nederlands
Serie: nee
Soort uitgave: paperback
Aantal pagina's: 217
Uitgever: Futuro Uitgevers
Jaar van publicatie: origineel 2017, mijn editie 2017 (1e editie)
ISBN-nummer: 9789492221643
Trefwoorden: Tweede Wereldoorlog, overleven, Nederland, Jodenvervolging
Waarom ging ik het lezen: Voor Hebban - het klonk als een interessant boek.
Aanrader: Ja.

Korte samenvatting:
Halverwege de Tweede Wereldoorlog komt een vrouw met baby de straat van Antonia inrennen, op de vlucht voor Duitse soldaten. Ze geeft de baby aan Antonia voordat de Duitsers het doorhebben, maar wordt zelf opgepakt. De baby heet Tamar en ze komt uit een Joods gezin. Antonia en haar man besluiten echter wel voor de baby te zorgen, totdat haar familie na de oorlog weer terug zal komen om haar op te halen.

Achterkanttekst:
Oktober 1943. Tamar is negen maanden oud als haar moeder, op de vlucht voor Duitse soldaten, haar in de armen van een onbekende vrouw duwt. Het Joodse meisje groeit op in een pleeggezin en krijgt te maken met alle gevaren die de Tweede Wereldoorlog met zich meebrengt, van verraad en NSB'ers tot bombardementen.

Tamar is een verhaal over het maken van morele keuzes in oorlogstijd en wordt door drie vrouwen verteld. Machteloze kleine mensen zoeken naar verklaringen om iets gruwelijks te begrijpen, het politieke drama is gevat in een ontroerend en meeslepend verhaal. Hoe overleef je een oorlog als je niemand kunt vertrouwen?

Over de achterkanttekst:
Waarom een komma tussen "begrijpen" en "het politieke drama"..?

Eerste alinea/pagina:
Met haar armen over elkaar gevouwen staat Antonia in de deuropening van haar huis. De stoeptegels in de verlaten straat glanzen donkergrijs door de plensbui van zonet. Uit de platanen dwarrelen gele bladeren, een windvlaag blaast ze voort door de goot. Een rilling kruipt over haar rug, Antonia trekt haar wollen vest dichter om zich heen. Waar blijven de jongens? Waarschijnlijk zijn ze aan het voetballen met hun vrienden en de tijd weer eens vergeten. In gedachten ziet ze Johan en Willem naar huis draven. Ze is blij dat haar zoons ondanks de huidige omstandigheden zo onbezorgd kunnen spelen.

Recensie:
Verhaal:
Het debuut van Monique Hoolt gaat niet zomaar over de Tweede Wereldoorlog. Het speelt zich af in haar geboorteplaats Hengelo, in de wijk Tuindorp 't Lansink. Van haar grootouders hoorde ze verhalen waar ze erg van onder de indruk was en veel hiervan heeft ze ook in dit boek verwerkt. Haar grootvader werkte bijvoorbeeld bij de NS en moest ook onderduiken toen de Spoorwegen staakten. Als tiener was Hoolt al geĂŻnteresseerd in de keuzes die mensen in oorlogstijd maken en dit komt ook duidelijk naar voren in haar debuut.

De eerste helft van het boek beslaat de oorlogsjaren 1943-1945. In dit deel leer je Antonia kennen, die haar gezin zo goed mogelijk probeert de oorlog te laten overleven. Ze wonen in het oosten van Nederland, waar het al iets makkelijker is om aan eten te komen, maar ook daar merken ze duidelijk dat het oorlog is. Ook wordt beschreven wat er gebeurt met Tamars familieleden, die naar een concentratiekamp worden gebracht. Tamar zelf is gelukkig zo jong dat ze niet doorheeft dat het oorlog is.

Het tweede gedeelte gaat over 1945-1947, wat er na de oorlog gebeurt. Een tante van Tamar, Anna, keert terug om Tamar op te halen, maar na zo'n lange tijd in een concentratiekamp moet ze wel wennen aan het zorgen voor een klein kind. In het korte derde deel, 1965, wordt beschreven wat Tamar in de tussentijd heeft gedaan en ontdekt ze nog een aantal dingen die tijdens de oorlog zijn gebeurd, om de openstaande vragen uit het verhaal compleet te maken.

Monique Hoolt (1965) probeert alle kanten van de oorlog te belichten: hoe een gewone familie in het oosten van het land het heeft, hoe het gaat met de verzetsstrijders, hoe het gaat met een familie die zich bij de NSB heeft aangesloten, hoe het gaat met een Joods gezin dat richting de concentratiekampen wordt gestuurd, en hoe het gaat met de Joodse onderduikers. Ze slaagt er wel in om alle kanten te bespreken, maar er zit toch een duidelijk oordeel in: de NSBers hadden niet met de Duitsers mee moeten werken, verzet is goed en Jodenvervolging is slecht. De hoofdpersonen zelf zijn vooral bezig met overleven. Gruweldaden die mensen in de oorlog begaan worden bijna terloops beschreven, zoals het maken van lampenkappen van mensenhuiden, waardoor het allemaal eigenlijk nog net iets erger wordt. Toch is het geen "overvol" verhaal, omdat het eerste deel vooral verteld wordt vanuit het oogpunt van Antonia met af en toe een hoofdstuk van Anna, Ă©Ă©n van de Joodse kinderen uit het gezin dat naar een concentratiekamp wordt gedeporteerd. Daardoorheb je als lezer een rustig uitgangspunt voor het verhaal. Het tweede deel is beschreven vanuit Anna's perspectief, maar op de momenten dat ze bij Antonia is, is het soms niet altijd duidelijk of iets nu door Anna of Antonia gezegd wordt. Het derde deel beschrijft dan weer Tamars ervaringen en gedachten.

Ook wordt duidelijk welke invloed de oorlog op mensen heeft. Zelfs Tamar, die de oorlog niet bewust heeft meegemaakt, krijgt er veel van mee als ze ouder wordt, doordat haar moeder en tante in een concentratiekamp hebben gezeten. Wel wordt duidelijk dat het alledaagse leven, het overleven, gewoon doorgaat, ook al vallen alle zekerheden weg door de oorlog. Je moet toch eten en daarvoor moet er geld verdiend worden. Hoe dat geld verdiend wordt, is echter niet altijd op een manier die mensen buiten oorlogstijd (moreel) acceptabel zouden vinden.

Schrijfstijl:
Opvallend is dat het verhaal in de tegenwoordige tijd is geschreven, met af en toe een uitstapje naar de verleden tijd als er over voorbije gebeurtenissen gesproken wordt.

Wel zijn er veel zinnen waarbij de komma gebruikt wordt als een soort punt, zoals: "In een tobbe in de hoek van de keuken schrobt Antonia met een borstel over de kleding op het houten wasbord, er komt een lucht omhoog van groene zeep." Hierdoor klinken de zinnen korter dan dat ze eigenlijk zijn.

Conclusie:
Tamar is een debuutroman die goed laat zien hoe het is om te leven in een bezet land, waarin je niet meer vrij bent om alles te doen en zeggen wat je wil. Er zijn tegenwoordig steeds minder mensen die uit eigen ervaring kunnen vertellen over de Tweede Wereldoorlog, dus dan is het lezen van een boek als dit een zeer toegankelijke manier om met deze verhalen kennis te maken.

Herleesbaarheid:
Het is niet zozeer een boek om zelf te herlezen, maar juist een boek om door te geven aan andere mensen.

Links:
- Deze recensie op Hebban.nl
- Deze recensie op Goodreads.

Soortgelijke boeken/aanraders:
- Oorlogswinter van Jan Terlouw.

Jul. 25th, 2017

  • 10:08 AM
Flower pics H took walking from the room down to the beach. So much in bloom!

Fireweed and fuchsia.


several more )

Jul. 25th, 2017

  • 12:57 PM
Polyamory and autism

...in conclusion, I am polya?

(I have not been so identifying because reasons. But this article points out a couple things I hadn't thought about.)

Yay Mango Languages app

  • Jul. 25th, 2017 at 12:05 PM
...so how do I type (what I presume are) hiragana with an American keyboard?

...wait

victory may be mine

こんにちは

\o/

Investigators of Infernal Incidents

  • Jul. 25th, 2017 at 9:31 PM
So, I've spent the past six days re-watching The Talons of Weng-Chiang in honour of the death of Trevor Baxter. I'm always happy to have a reason to return to this bit of the Hinchcliff era (regardless of its evident flaws re: Being Hella Racist) although I could wish for a different excuse this time around.

The eternally surprising thing about Jago and Litefoot is that they don't even meet each other until part way through the fifth episode. And yet, the minute that Litefoot opens the door and Jago mistakes him for his own servant, something truly magical happens and they become the ultimate Holmes double act. It's partly the writing, partly the acting and partly an extraordinary chemistry between Benjamin and Baxter that makes their bonding feel inevitable instead of misplaced. Even before Big Finish came along I found it impossible not to imagine their lives continuing outside the frame. Much as I can't imagine Ian and Barbara not getting married, I could never imagine Jago and Litefoot not being Best Friends Forever and having lots more adventures in Victorian London.

Fortunately Big Finish ensured that they finally got their spin-off show, and IMHO it's some of the best stuff they've ever done, in large part because the leads are a complete joy to listen to no matter what they're doing. One of those pairs of actors who could read a phone book at each other and make it funny or touching or both at once.

Apparently Trevor Baxter used to joke that he'd have nothing to live for if they cancelled the series, and I don't think you can say fairer than a run of thirteen box sets (plus extras!) that was only ended by the death of one half of the principal players. I hope he knew just how much his work was appreciated by fans everywhere.

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Many Faces

  • Jul. 25th, 2017 at 3:56 AM
Many Faces of Harry Potter, Chapter 34 is published!

Archive of Our Own isn't working for me right now, so just these two options for now:

FF.net

BigCloset


Start at Chapter One: "Feeling Sic" = AO3, FF.net, BC
Today was supposed to be the day for my second dose of Spinraza. I showed up half an hour early to my appointment at the Stanford Neurological Clinic. Checked in and was sent to radiology. They told me that the second time should be easier. They had done the procedure successfully once. Documented where they had been successful and things were supposed to go more smoothly this time. Well I'm home and it's 9 o'clock-ish and I did not get the Spinraza today. The nurse, Connie tells me we can try again tomorrow, but if we are unsuccessful, I don't think I will be getting anymore medication.

Like last time, I was transferred from my wheelchair to a gurney. I had to wait a couple of hours because there was another person getting Spinraza ahead of me. I guess they're getting a lot more interest from people with SMA.

Around 11 o'clock they wheeled me into the room and transferred me to the cold hard table they use. They positioning me on my left side again and then I waited 10 or 15 minutes for the doctor to show up. Normally this isn’t a big issue I’m used to being patient and waiting for doctors, but laying on a flat surface is painful for me. My diagnosis causes contractures in my joints especially my hips and knees. So I don’t really do flat surfaces very well and making the surface hard doesn’t improve the situation.

Eventually the doctor showed and they finished positioning me and started taking pictures to decide the best site for the lumbar puncture. After 30 minutes or so they numbed me up and started poking. Now I want to be clear the staff at Stanford are really great to me. They were very thorough and professional this time. I just apparently have a uniquely fucked up spinal column. Even though they saw what looked like a very promising site for the puncture they kept hitting bone. Around an hour and 30 minutes I was starting to get in real pain. I had been in pain since they put me on the hard table and I was able to manage it but at this point I was starting to feel like couldn’t really take much more. I was even neglecting to report some pain from the puncture because it just didn’t really hurt as much as the rest of my body.

My shoulders ached, my hips hurt and the ribs on my left side were killing me. The doctors kept asking me to hang in there and Connie asked to give them five more minutes. They pulled out the needle, changed doctors and took another try at a whole new area of my spine. (After having made two attempts higher up on my back.) After another 30 minutes the doctor said she was very. very close and to hang in there. I tried for another 10 or 15 minutes and reluctantly pled uncle.

I was in agony. I was sweating. I was exhausted. Frustrated with myself and the universe for screwing around again. They rolled me on my back and eventually got me into my wheelchair. My worker, who came with me, had an appointment for her doctor at 2:30 in the afternoon. We hadn’t thought we would be at Stanford this long, but once I was done we rushed to the car and tried to get to Highland as soon as possible. We did manage to get her to the hospital about five minutes late and she texted us later to tell us the doctor saw her. So at least I didn’t screw her day up.

Connie said she would try to work something out. You see this drug has to be administered on a strict schedule once I had my first dose two weeks ago I have to have the next two doses in intervals of two weeks. However it turns out that I have one day leeway. I must get my next dose tomorrow or I think I need to start over again. I’m not at all sure I would get the approvals. I am the first person with Medi-Cal and Medicare who has been approved for the treatment. I was supposed to be the test subject. Connie said she'd call me later and she did. I have an appointment to try again tomorrow.

The problem is tomorrow I was supposed to have my caseworker do their annual review for my IHSS (which funds my personal care workers). I have never had to reschedule before but I had to reschedule in order to go to my original appointment. We rescheduled for the following day which of course now I can’t make. So I need to cancel again and hope they won’t be too upset.

I feel like I failed. I know intellectually I didn’t, but I think of myself as being pretty stubborn and I’m proud of that. Now, I gave up and I can’t help thinking I should’ve tried to hang in there a little longer. I really hope these treatments get easier or I don’t know how much of it I can take. Wish me luck tomorrow. And hope my caseworker doesn’t decide to screw me over.
The general fund currently contains $85. Everyone is eligible to vote in this poll. I will keep it open at least until Tuesday night. If there's a clear answer then, I'll close it. Otherwise I may leave it open a little longer.

Read and vote! )
--My sleep has continued to be all over the place. Last night I managed to get to bed around 1 AM or so (IIRC) and didn't get up until 11:30 today; the night before, I was in bed by 1:15 so I could get up at a reasonable hour and [dreamwidth.org profile] scruloose, [dreamwidth.org profile] ginny_t, Kas, and I could go raspberry picking, and I managed, at a generous estimate, two hours of sleep. FUN.


--I had these notions of finishing a fic for this round of [dreamwidth.org profile] smallfandomfest, but it wraps up at the end of this month, so...ha ha ha no. ^^; But hey, I got it started and made some actual progress during [dreamwidth.org profile] nanodownunder, and unfilled [dreamwidth.org profile] smallfandomfest prompts remain available for claiming past the round when they're prompted, so it's not like I won't have another chance. I just liked the idea of doing it now.


--I haven't taken pictures yet, but when we were out watering the garden a couple of days ago, there were the beginnings of blossoms on one of the two clematis plants!


--Amidst all the political awfulness, personal stuff, cute gifs, and book-blogger chat, my Twitter feed has been full of people being gleeful about "Dream Daddy: A Dad Dating Simulator"--enough so that I briefly pretended I don't have something like 100 unplayed games and can't remember the last time I played anything and went to check it out. I was saved by an impulse buy by the fact that the game's currently Windows- and Mac-only; I do still have a Windows partition for games, but realistically, I also can't remember the last time I booted into it for anything but StarCraft. (And that wasn't terribly recently. I did buy at least the first of the SCII Nova mission packs, but I don't remember how far I got.) (Separate parenthetical: I've preordered the remastered original StarCraft, so for that, booting into Windows will undoubtedly happen. Unless it magically runs under WINE.)


--I need to keep reminding myself that Rogue One is on Netflix until I finally watch it (having literally slept through most of it in the theatre, which was not the movie's fault!). I should also rewatch TFA sometime in the next few months.


--It turns out Black Sails is shorter than I'd been thinking in two ways: I'd somehow had the impression it's five seasons, not four, and I also hadn't realized the seasons are so short (eight to ten episodes each, I think?). All of a sudden bumping it up to basically the top of my to-watch list (which seems to be a good plan, judging from how many people I know are in love with the show) is a way less daunting prospect.

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