SMASH! 2017

Aug. 21st, 2017 10:14 pm
meteordust: (Default)
[personal profile] meteordust
On Saturday, I went to SMASH!, for the first time in five years. It was out at Rosehill Gardens, and I was pretty stunned at how huge it had become. So many people! (I was also a little stunned that it was now $45 for the day.)


AnimeUNSW )

A Bride's Story: Same-Sex Love and Unions )

Shopping )

Photos )

(no subject)

Aug. 20th, 2017 11:18 pm
harpers_child: melaka fray reading from "Tales of the Slayers". (Default)
[personal profile] harpers_child
Original plans for the day fell through to due to an excess of people at City Museum and the Arch being sold out for today and tomorrow when we went to get tickets.

Ended up at the Science Museum. Even though it's geared towards kids we still had fun. Too much walking though.

Taped all the things (knees, shoulders, right thumb/wrist) in anticipation of City Museum. Kept tape on for slightly too long. Meh. We're gonna try again either tomorrow or Tuesday. Depends on eclipse traffic.

Have had two really nice snuggles with sister's cat Todd. He's currently overweight because he keeps stealing dog food. Her younger dog needs food out at all times to stay at a healthy weight. (Promise they've tried everything. This is what the vet suggested and the older dog doesn't want younger dog's food.) This is a cat who's about 18 pounds when he's in a good weight spot. I'd currently peg him closer to 25. (We suspect there's Maine Coon in his recent ancestry.) Todd's currently sitting on my feet purring. I have a feeling cuddle number 3 is immanent. He got a bath earlier tonight and has been fixing his fur while glaring at people for the last coupled hours.

Edit: I have been told Todd is 24 pounds not 25.

Hair update

Aug. 20th, 2017 11:32 pm
tassosss: (Default)
[personal profile] tassosss
Okay, since I was chatting with folks about it and we were working on house projects all day, I went ahead and washed my hair today! This is the first time in 6 weeks (ish). See this post for context.

I used about a quarter cup of baking soda mixed with a quarter cup of water for the cleaning of the hair. The baking soda, like on your stove, gets rid of grease, and after using it, did indeed leave my hair with that squeaky, lots of friction feeling that you get if you've ever used bar soap to wash your hair. The process itself I think I'll have to get used to. It doesn't foam or lather, and the mixture has low viscosity because of the water. I poured it over my head in bits, trying to mostly keep it on my scalp and get at the different parts. Then there was a bunch of baking soda not in solution that I just plopped on.

I think the water is mostly to be a conveyance rather than needing to dilute the baking soda at all. It's a buffer, so I'm not really worried about concentration, and you're in the shower so there's going to be more water everywhere. I think next time I might just have the powder with him and scoop it on mushy rather than with too much water. (I didn't actually go back and look up what I was supposed to do...)

After the baking soda was rinsed out I put on a quarter cup of apple cider vinegar mixed with a quarter cup of water. The reason for this I've read is that it neutralize the baking soda to keep you scalp in pH balance and also kills bacteria and stuff growing on your scalp, since it's an acid. Also it's supposed to be a natural natural something because it "removes build up and seals your hair cuticle." I'm not sure of the science, but it did work, making my hair feel smooth and clean again as if I'd used a conditioner. So all in all very good results. I used apple cider vinegar because I read somewhere that it's a little less acidic than white vinegar, and also because it doesn't smell as strong. I used what I had in my kitchen, so nothing special. It doesn't smell like vinegar to me at all, though my husband who can smell my head says it's faintly there. I certainly won't be knocking anyone over with it.

All in all, I'm pleased with the results. It's like I washed my hair or something. The real test will be how often I need it. The goal is less frequently than I had been needing to wash my hair with shampoo - ideally once a week or once every two weeks. That was the whole point of not washing my hair for six weeks, to make it so my scalp doesn't instantly produce grease as soon as it's cleaned. Keeping the pH balance to neutral with the base then acid rinse is supposed to help with that.

Grr. Argh.

Aug. 20th, 2017 09:02 pm
settiai: (Gus/Shawn -- sporkyadrasteia)
[personal profile] settiai
I would like to state, for the record, that I seriously hate having finances that are in a state where all it takes is one unexpected larger expense to send me panicking. :-/

So, yes, it's looking like my tentative plans to make it to PAX Unplugged are crashing and burning at the moment. And there's a very good chance that I'm not going to have enough money to cover some bills that will be popping up in the next 2-3 weeks, which means I'm probably going to be going through my belongings and putting up another virtual garage sale post in the next few days.

Mainly because the universe fucking hates me right now. Apparently, at least.

It's been awhile since I posted it, so here's my Ko-fi page if anyone has an extra couple of dollars to spare. If anyone makes a donation, I'd be glad to try to write you a short fic in a fandom that I know. And, like I said before, I'll probably be posting a bunch of books and DVDs (and probably some other stuff as well) for sale in the next few days if anyone's interested in such things.

It was a camel!

Aug. 20th, 2017 01:14 pm
rachelmanija: (It was a monkey!)
[personal profile] rachelmanija
This clip from CNN is well worth listening to.

It encapsulates both the jaw-dropping awfulness and bizarreness of the Orange Supremacist era, and the extent to which the mainstream media has gotten so appalled that they're dropping their usual false equivalency. I mean the old "both sides have a point," which works when both sides DO have a point, but does not when you're talking about Nazis vs. anti-Nazis or Cheetolini vs. human beings with empathy. Also, it made me laugh.

Yesterday post-rally [personal profile] hederahelix and I were discussing this.

"It's just so surreal," she said. "Hey... Is that a camel?"

I looked over. The U-haul next to us had a giant camel painted on the side.

Below the camel, as if in explanation of why a U-haul would be decorated with a giant camel, were a few lines of Wikipedia-esque notes on camels, something like "A camel is an even-toed ungulate within the genus Camelus, bearing distinctive fatty deposits known as "humps" on its back."

Baking

Aug. 20th, 2017 03:50 pm
the_bell_jar: (Default)
[personal profile] the_bell_jar
I've been baking! Yesterday I made a delicious Kentucky butter pound cake. I don't have a pic because a bit of the top broke off despite generous shortening and flouring (I think my bundt pan has a weird spot b/c the last cake broke in the same way). *BUT* today I made the most beautiful apple pie!

So, despite not having a job yet (and all of the fuckery going on in the U.S.), my personal life is great and I am enjoying the time to bake and cook. I'm applying for a county-wide substitute teacher position, though, so keep your fingers crossed that I'm accepted and that I won't have to color my hair a *normal* color!

Also, I both sadly and excitedly watched the final episode of Orphan Black a couple nights ago. I feel like it's the end of an era. Here's hoping Underground gets picked up after being dropped by WGN. It's the only show that sucks me in the same way Orphan Black did. Not even Game of Thrones is as captivating (well, except maybe the recent "The Spoils of War" episode... and The Red Wedding, of course).

Here are some happy apple pie pics. Can you smell it through the computer? Yes, yes you can...



lannamichaels: "(but I digress)" written in black text on textured background (but i digress)
[personal profile] lannamichaels


Just now I picked up for the border of the baby blanket and I can't tell if the pick up is terrible and I have to re-do it because it's all v. v. v. scrunched together because the cable on the circular needle is too short. This is after I connected in another cable before I started picking up because I knew the original cable wasn't long enough.

Okay, so easy solution, connect in a longer cable. But even though I would swear that *I do have longer cables*, I can't find them.

Okay, so slightly harder solution, just connect in the many, many shorter cables that I can find. Except that won't work, since I could only find one cable connector and it's the one I'm already using.

So now I have ordered both additional long cables and cable connectors. And then someday I will be able to see how the pick-up actually looks, which is, honestly, probably terrible; I was having a lot of issues picking up along the cast-on edge.

I barely knit these days. I don't deserve these kinds of problems. (I keep being like "okay, switch to crochet, it seems easier on the hands", and then not doing it.)

Tourism through swimming pools

Aug. 20th, 2017 07:46 pm
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
[personal profile] rmc28
Both children love swimming. Charles is a competent casual swimmer, Nicholas is still in beginner swim lessons and needs the full-time attention of an adult whenever out of his depth. So I like to take them swimming whenever possible, and made sure to pack swimming things for this holiday.

So far we have managed 2 pools in Helsinki, 1 on the ferry, and 2 in Stockholm.
Read more... )
Today we arrived in Copenhagen and our current airbnb in Fredericksberg is a very short walk from another local pool, plus there are a number of others I am investigating in case we have time for a second one ...

lifely update

Aug. 20th, 2017 12:35 pm
tassosss: (disreputable folk)
[personal profile] tassosss
Right. So I've been having the same log in problems to DW that others seem to be experiencing. Firefox logins were not working, and I followed advice I saw on someone's DW about shutting down, restarting, and not using a bookmark to get to my page. The the log in worked. Safari was working but I use FB on Safari so I try not to cross the browser streams. I submitted a support ticket, and for anyone who didn't now you can do that without being logged in by email: support@dreamwidth.org

*
Hey there's an eclipse tomorrow!

I haven't heard anything about that at work or anything /sarcasm.

But I am excited for it, though I'm in the 80 percent zone, so not a total for me. For the 2024 eclipse, I'll make the effort to get somewhere to see totality.

*
Life experiments I am currently conducting:
1. Can I really go without washing my hair? I'm almost at the end of week 6, and it's been more of a trial than I was expecting. Backstory: I don't like showers. Don't ask. I don't know why. It's always been a thing. I tend to shower twice a week, often after exercising, and so my pattern for a long time has been to wash my hair twice a week. But then I got it in my head to try to transition away from shampoo, and the first step is to not wash your hair for 4-6 weeks to let your scalp's grease production stop being in overdrive. And I definitely turned a corner last weekend, when for the first time when I rinsed my hair it did not feel nearly as greasy as it had for the first five weeks. (To clarify: I still shower, I just am abstaining from hairwashing and only rinse with water.) It's still a little greasy but nowhere near where it was, and now that I've gotten this far I'm going to try the baking soda and vinegar this week to see how that goes.

*
I continue to read lots of Dragon Age fanfic. As you can probably tell by my lack of recs, none of the ones from the last two weeks or so have been good enough to rec. The one I finished yesterday which was an insane amount words, I should have stopped reading 100,000 words before the end. But I finished it. Because I just want to read DA fic and I'm in the dregs of my pairing so.. Yeah.

*
I'm really liking season 7 of Game of Thrones. I'm rewatching the first season since I have access to HBO for the moment, the good parts version, by which I mean Jon, Dany, Arya, Cersei, Jaime, Bran, and judicious skipping through Ned and Catlyn.

*
There are so many shows I want to catch up on... but not enough to stop reading DA fic.

*
Writing is still a chore and feels like I'm not getting anywhere.

*
I'm judiciously blocking out the real world news for certain blocks of time each day.
rydra_wong: The display board of a train reads "this train is fucked". (this train is fucked)
[personal profile] rydra_wong
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/aug/19/boston-protest-free-speech-rally

Donald Trump described anti-fascist and anti-racist demonstrators who converged on Boston as “anti-police agitators” on Saturday, in a tweet that seemed destined to revive the still simmering controversy over his remarks equating the far right and anti-Nazis in Charlottesville last weekend.

“Looks like many anti-police agitators in Boston,” Trump tweeted. “Police are looking tough and smart! Thank you.”

But he later seemed to back the right to demonstrate, posting: “Our great country has been divided for decades. Sometimes you need protest in order to heal, & we will heal, & be stronger than ever before!”

He added: “I want to applaud the many protestors in Boston who are speaking out against bigotry and hate. Our country will soon come together as one!”

A handful of Switzerland pictures

Aug. 19th, 2017 11:32 pm
naye: the sky and mountains above lake geneva (mountain dawn)
[personal profile] naye
Sharing a couple of pictures from our trip before bedtime. ♥

Just one to start with over the cut - lots more below!


20170812_090000

Lake Geneva Panorama View


Lake, castle & mountains here )

Cats Against Nazis

Aug. 19th, 2017 01:58 pm
rachelmanija: (Heroes: support WGA)
[personal profile] rachelmanija
The rally was fine, though quite small. I imagine there would have been a much bigger turnout if the Nazis hadn't cancelled. One of my neighbors was there!

I went with [personal profile] hederahelix. We are now heading for Clementine.

Here I am with my sign and feline fellows in resistance.



watching The Defenders this weekend

Aug. 19th, 2017 01:25 pm
kore: (Jessica Jones - fucking bubbles)
[personal profile] kore
On ep 2 and the scene where DANNY CANNOT EVEN MAKE A DENT IN LUKE IS AWESOME I ALREADY REWOUND IT TWICE. (and booed when his fist got all glowy)

MISTY AND JESSICA <333

Further spoilers )

Krysten Ritter and Mike Colter are the total MVPs. And they have such great chemistry! Charlie Cox is all right. Finn Jones is terrible, tho.

WHY IS DANNY NOT PLAYED BY LEWIS TAN. ARGH.

Fandom, if I don't see a whole lot of white-hot femslash between Alexandra and Elektra, I'm going to be VERY disappointed.


ETA LOL, I am once more out of step with fandom because I enjoyed it. Everyone else seems to think it sucks. T says he liked the individual series with more character depth better, that this kind of bounced around with all of them, but says he also enjoyed it. I liked all the bits where Danny was useless (carried like a sack of spuds...repeatedly! tied to a chair....repeatedly! he was like Dawn being the Key in S5 Buffy!). Matthew, you are such a COMPLETE FAILBOAT. I want fic of all the support system people in that police station saferoom complaining about the idiots in their lives, and the lousy coffee. Also more Colleen/Claire please. I want Trish to sidle up to Karen and start networking about reporting. Black Sky!Elektra is totally Bucky, except Matt is a failboat. I liked Élodie Yung so much better in this than in DD S2. There were some nice character moments -- Colleen and Claire, Elektra in Matt's bed, Danny and Luke ("Trust me, I'd rather face a dragon than Jessica Jones any day") -- but not really enough.


T: You know, I had forgotten so much of that second season of Daredevil....

MOI: And it's all coming back to you now?*

T: Yeah, kind of flooding in, actually. The ninjas and the hospital attack and how they weren't really alive and all that.

MOI: This is one case where my shit memory is a blessing.


ETA 2 A few more of my thoughts in [personal profile] monanotlisa's comments here. and at musesfool's. [personal profile] igrockspock also has some good thoughts (SPOILERS). Any other posts about the show? Is anyone doing any roundups? I hate how all the "commentary" seems to have gone to Twitter.


*yes of course I'm referencing the song

Non-Cornish pasties

Aug. 19th, 2017 01:00 pm
azurelunatic: Chocolate dessert, captioned No Artificial Shortages  (no artificial shortages)
[personal profile] azurelunatic
Belovedest has mentioned a few times that it's hard to get your hands on a nice meat pasty around these parts. I contemplated the matter and asked a few questions.

At length, it seemed like it was a good day to try.

My reliable source for understanding the principles behind what I'm cooking is Serious Eats. So I read through the pie crust stuff again. (Incidentally, the site is a clickbait hole for DELICIOUSNESS.)


Clickbait: http://www.seriouseats.com/2015/03/science-of-pie-7-myths-that-need-to-go-away.html

Science: http://sweets.seriouseats.com/2011/07/the-food-lab-the-science-of-pie-how-to-make-pie-crust-easy-recipe.html

Recipe: http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2011/07/easy-pie-dough-recipe.html
2 1/2 cups (12.5 ounces; 350 grams) all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons (25 grams) sugar
1 teaspoon (5 grams) kosher salt
2 1/2 sticks (10 ounces; 280 grams) unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch pats
6 tablespoons (3 ounces; 85 milliliters) cold water

I looked at the amounts involved.

There was no way that I was going to be able to fit all that flour and butter into my food processor, which is an attachment to my stick blender. I looked closely at the amounts.

It so happens that the ratio of cups of flour to sticks of butter is 1:1. So I decided that I could make a test batch, one cup and one stick. The salt and sugar is less important, and in fact the sugar is kind of not what I wanted for a pasty dough.

I put 2/3 of the flour together with the butter and a bit of salt, then added a little water and more of the flour. (Probably not how I should have done it.) Then I mixed it in a larger bowl with a little more water. My hands are rather hot, so I tried to cool them down with ice.

I wrapped it up in cling wrap and let it cool off in the refrigerator. I pulled it out a few hours later, and quartered the dough. I saw that it had distinct stacked layers, like a good steel blade. I was thrilled.

I rolled it out in the best tradition of my mother, between two sheets of parchment paper. (There is no rolling pin in this kitchen. I used a glass.) I stuck it back in the refrigerator, still between the sheets, to wait while I prepared the filling. (Parchment paper and waxed paper are easier to handle than cling wrap, for this.)

http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2012/01/cornish-pasty-british-meat-hand-pie-recipe.html

This was not a Cornish pasty. [personal profile] wohali said something about a chicken curry pasty, and I went "Oooo!" and she advised that you can use pretty much any chicken curry recipe, just dryer than usual.

I went for it.

My basic chicken curry is chicken plus a brick of golden curry sauce plus assorted vegetables, and oil as needed. This time I decided to cook the chicken thigh meat so it would be easy to separate from the bones in my multifunction fancy rice cooker, along with some spiced oil left over from a previous recipe, and some dry onions. I cooked the vegetables and the curry brick separately, only combining them all (and some potato flakes to sop up water and oil) at the end. My partner is much better at handling chicken meat in all its phases than I am, and stripped the meat from the bones before I mixed them together.

I did roll it too thin, and I let it get too hot when filling it.

Despite the holes, I stuck the crust together with egg wash, and egg washed the outside. (I used the leftover egg wash to make a little bit of curry scrambled egg, which my partner ate on top of their salad.)

I'd wisely said that if the food was not going to be ready by 10pm, we should eat something else. The pies came out of the oven just as we were finishing chicken nuggets, but we still had enough room to test half a pie each.


Mmmmmmmmm.

I will be making these again. And the dough process is relatively simple with the tools at hand, so my partner (who can follow a recipe, but isn't yet the cocky ass in the kitchen that I am) may wind up learning the process too.


I put together a bit of sweet pie dough just now, and it's chilling in a ball in the refrigerator. I'm thinking that some fruit pies might be in order...

Sparkler needs your support!

Aug. 19th, 2017 11:08 am
laceblade: Sasuke and Ponyo; Ponyo w/light over her head, expression gleeful (Ponyo: It's a light!)
[personal profile] laceblade
It's time for Sparkler's annual kickstarter to fund their next year of comics. They have 3 days left, and they're only a little more than halfway there. They're doing great work, and they need help.
Most of our content is free to read and stream, but a paid magazine membership lets you read ahead of the free serialization, download the content, and support the creators.

Sparkler Monthly is a multimedia, digital shojo/josei magazine of original English-language fiction. Our carefully selected creators are paid advances for their work and go through a thorough editorial process. After a book or audio story is serialized in the magazine, it’s bundled with bonus material and sold as ebooks, limited paperbacks, and/or CDs in the Sparkler Shop (similar to the magazine –> tankoubon system in Japan). In addition, our paperbacks and products can be found at a number of retailers; see our Retail & Libraries page on where to buy, and how to acquire books for your business or library.

The primary audience for Sparkler Monthly is girls and women aged 15 and up, or anyone interested in the rough ballpark of Female Gaze. Our four founders and most of our staff identify as female and are committed to promoting inclusive, fem-positive, and ridiculously fun content. We welcome creators of any gender and are particularly interested in entertaining, engrossing stories that tap into the variety and diversity of fandom.

This is a link to their Kickstarter campaign. The FAQ gives great advice if the options are overwhelming.

I love their content, from scripted audio dramas to comics to light novels. I love getting paperback copies of things I've tried online, so that I can more easily share them with other people.

If you've thought about supporting Sparkler or trying it out, now is the best [and, potentially only] time to do so.

Linkspam on a Saturday morning

Aug. 19th, 2017 09:00 am
cofax7: Marion Ravenwood in a hat (IJ - Marion hat)
[personal profile] cofax7
What a week, huh? So exhausting. I swear, this regime is going to ruin my liver.

Remember that guy at Google with the memo? (Seems like months ago, doesn't it?) Well, one of the MetaFilter gang decided to do a comprehensive discussion/analysis of his arguments, complete with citations. The Truth Has Got Its Boots On, which is a lovely Pratchett reference.

Here's a resource for people confused about the Trump/Russia scandal. Amidst all the racism and Nazis, there are still questions about Trump's history with Russia.

This New Yorker article also asks some questions about Wall Street Raider Carl Icahn and his relationship with the Trump regime. Conflicts of interest? Pish.

This article looks at environmental justice from the perspective of the community rather than the regulator or government. It's both devastating and hopeful.

This article from Pro Publica gives a solid historical overview of attempts to incorporate principles of environmental justice at the federal level, and how they have failed. I do love Pro Publica: they do solid investigative journalism.

Politics can make strange bedfellows, as we know: hunters are on the front lines protecting the public lands.

This Lawfare article about private military groups hints at some legal tools that can be used against the Neo-Nazis.

The New York Review of Books has dropped the paywall on James M. McPherson's take-down of the myth of the Lost Cause.

Here's a blackly funny report of a call to a Georgia Congressman's office.

*

Alton Brown's fruitcake recipe. It looks tasty, but the volume is far too small. Why make only one fruitcake at a time?!

*

I am working on my NFE story, but argh, just realized that book club is this coming Wednesday, and I haven't read the book yet! Argh. Also it took me 4 tries to get started on the story, and then I had to do some background research and realized that I had [redacted] wrong, and also [redacted], and now I have to research [redacted]. I'm not sure if I'm going to get done in time...

*

In other news, Help!. Is anyone else using Chrome and having trouble logging into DW? I turned off HTTPS Everywhere, but that didn't make any difference. I simply cannot log in.

And now off to dog class where once again we will fail on the weave poles...

(no subject)

Aug. 19th, 2017 03:31 am
harpers_child: melaka fray reading from "Tales of the Slayers". (Default)
[personal profile] harpers_child
I have a terrible habit of not sleeping before I travel. I don't know why. Turning off the computer and going to lay down for a few hours.

Taking a shower at almost 3 am was probably a not terribly bright idea, but I was hoping it'd relax me enough to nap. No dice.
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