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I.

Saturday was a super moon, which I didn't know -- but on Friday night I went biking along the riverside path, eventually ending up in the Lachine Rapids migratory bird sanctuary a half-hour's ride away. The moon was very large and very bright; in iPhone photos it looks like a spotlight on the water.

The last time I went biking, the Saturday evening after Canada Day, I ran into an outdoors salsa social, a Greek neighbourhood dance party/food fair, and a waterside bonfire, over the course of a 7km ride. And there was a view of the Old Port fireworks on the way back. Southwest Montreal is off the anglo radar -- the Plateau hipsters of my generation follow their French counterparts north to Anjou when they get hitched and want a bigger place;  the squares move back to NDG/Cote Saint-Luc, good grief -- but Wellington Street is what Monkland Village was 25 years ago, with better metro access. (Except Verdun/LaSalle/Charlevoix were traditionally French-Irish Catholic working class. Now with sizeable mainland Chinese population: university kids, restaurant workers, and new immigrants, not  the big-house suburbanite types across the river in Brossard. I can do my weekend grocery run entirely in Mandarin if I wanted. Then there's the err assorted characters.)

Come on: two minutes' walk to the metro station (7 minutes metro to downtown), 5 minutes' walk to the supermarket and the Canadian Tire, 5 minutes walk the other way to the gym (3 gourmet coffee shops along the way), 5 minutes' bike to the public pool, and from there access to 30 km worth of bike paths along riverside parks, bird sanctuaries, et al. Every yard backing onto the alley behind my house contains a dog, and this is why. There is also a pigeon coop, and an extraordinarily friendly peaches-and-cream outdoors cat. She followed me up the fire escape last night, was not at all shy about coming inside to have a look around, in fact was rather indignant about being put out again. I'm quite allergic to her, alas.

II.

Have been watching the World Cup (generally agreed to be the best WC since [insert] year: my first and measuring-stick WC was '98, so '98 for me), old Winding Refn movies, and listening to vaporwave. Uploaded a couple of mixes to 8tracks. Last night was Queen and Adam Lambert at the Bell Centre; probably the loudest stadium show I've ever been at (I don't do a lot of classic rock). The amps seemed ready to fritz, and I could barely hear myself talk afterward.

There is probably an alternate universe in which Brian May is the narrator of Cosmos and Neil Degrasse Tyson is a guitar god.



Much of the social-use space Queen occupied in their heyday has been taken over by other genres, I think. And even rock bands that make the charts tend to feel homogeneous, rather than very recognizable personalities meshing as a team (this is also what I want out of pop vocal groups and, for that matter, World Cup national sides) -- I mean the Mumfords are nice folks but etc etc. The thing I diffusely miss in non-rock genres is that certain types don't end up with as much of a place in the stage act, or the public face of the art, or what have you. Never mind Brian May or Roger Taylor; who's the John Deacon of rap, you know? It closes off avenues. But being the John Deacon of Queen is also meaningless outside of the context of there being a Freddie Mercury, Brian May, and Roger Taylor of Queen.

ANYWAY HERE'S "LOVE KILLS"
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My grandmother passed away Thursday night. We learnt she had terminal cancer in January, which is a story in and of itself, and after that her decline was shockingly rapid. Insofar as I can reconstruct the timeline, I was halfway through an 8-hour session of straight whiskey drinking and hashing out of emotional topics with an old friend (including but not limited to major family death). Went to bed at 5:30am, got up at 8:30am, got on the bus to work, received my mother's email informing me about my grandma, cried, got off the bus, got a coffee and croissant egg sandwich, took two Tylenols, and went into six straight conference calls before 2pm. Actually, the entire week has been straight conference calls 9-5, which is pretty impressive; a normal week for me is 25 hours of meetings, not 35. 35 means I have to write emails and review documents *while* on conference calls. Friday was the MEGA drop-deadline we'd been working toward since the start of the year, and there were the usual last-minute switcheroos and wrenches in gears, punctuated by background screaming whenever Canada scored a goal in Olympics hockey. By the afternoon it was mostly out of my hands, but there are people on the project who worked into the night and, I suspect, are working over the weekend to get tweaks in. The team is good; it probably did me more good to be in meetings with them all day than sit alone moping.

Other things that happened this week: my sister had to go in for two four-hour plasma transfusions for an autoimmune disorder diagnosed in early February. I started taking gingko biloba, St John's wort, and all my vitamins, because 1) I really cannot be sick right now, see above and 2) although $BIGTELCO's whole charitable endeavour *thing* is mental health and the insurance policy is accordingly generous, ironically I don't have time to set myself up with a therapist. I mean, nothing serious: the list of no-duh Sherlock causes for anxiety spikes, irritation, mental fatigue and general existential malaise is high. [livejournal.com profile] flemmings has done great with gingko, it seems like, and you can teach yourself to soothe yourself. (One of the best things you can do for a strongly metacognitive child is to teach them about Vulcan mind discipline, frankly. Not the shallow idea of the thing, but the way the books delve into it.)

Spoiler: it worked. It worked immediately and freakily well. The standard dosage for St John's wort is 300mg three times a day, and I basically just stuck to the minimum HIGHLY EFFECTIVE dose of one pill in the morning because o_O. The gingko also worked, in that thinking is generally easier, brain fog was setting in around 3pm and has been pushed back to 10-11pm where it belongs. I've lost all need for caffeine, which is probably the greatest thing because coffee and anxiety form a vicious cycle. (St John's wort, it turns out, is a dopamine reuptake inhibitor as well as serotonin - as I discovered when I drank that one coffee very slowly Friday morning. It gave me heart palpitations.) I've fallen back to one or two cups of tea a day; ten years of encroaching caffeine addiction erased at a swoop.

I feel much more like my normal self, which is to say I don't really have negative emotions. Which is worrisome for a couple of different reasons, to be honest.

I don't know what would happen if I take this combo for an extended period. Herbal remedies have always worked on me. Effectively, reliably, and with no side effects, once proper dosage is established; it's actual pharmaceuticals (including antibiotics, steroids, whatever) where I can't tell half the time if they're working or if I'm experiencing a placebo effect.
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I got a promotion, or rather I got a somewhat different job at the same company. So I am currently wrapping the one up while trying to get a head start on the other (this involves meetings. Lots and lots of meetings. It's a boss-level job, though I am not specifically the boss of anyone).

So, different home and different work in the span of three months. XD; My instinct is not to announce these things -- I actually hate how "life changes" are supposed to be the subject of social bulletins; not other people's, but like if I got married or moved to California it would occupy enough of my time/spoons without OHGAWD having to make a big deal of it, my social life is supposed to be a break from my life life -- but I thought I'd try, yanno, not being a weird person for once.
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It is pneumonia. XD; A very small pneumonia, I am told! Barely a bronchitis really! I have been put on Biaxin for five days and it has not made me sick, so that is already a plus.
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Realized I should probably post these where I can find/see them, instead of lost to the Tumblr back pages.

  • Exercise twice a week. Once gym, once something else. (Figure out the something else — Igloofest will do for the next few weeks, but some sort of dance or yoga class thereafter.) UPDATE: have actually been keeping up with this, due to Igloofest, that great improver of my Januaries. Really need to find a dance class. The goal is not so much to lose weight (though that'd be nice -- the 15lbs I'm not sure is even visible to anyone else is throwing my posture out, with deleterious effects on my lower back) as to break the vicious cycle whereby the more I don't exercise, the lower my energy level/metabolism/mood fall, the more I don't exercise, etc. Higher energy makes me more productive so I'm not actually losing time by exercising.
  • For summer, though summer is hard to imagine right now: get a Bixi subscription and use it. Do the south river canal bike path like you’ve been meaning to for two years (this will require a proper bike rental). UPDATE: still to do of course.
  • Read one book every two weeks and watch one movie every week from the paid-up backlog, until there is no more paid-up backlog. Make a two-sentence post just to prove you’ve done it. Seems generous time-wise, doesn’t it? Haaaa. UPDATE: several ppl I know are doing a weekly reading meme so I may as well jump on that. Did not watch any new movies in the past week but did rewatch the LotR extended editions, whatever, they are technically backlog and more to the point IT TOOK FOREVER (though a more than intermittently thrilling forever).
  • Write something every week. Doesn’t much matter what, as long as you expend some effort to knock it into shape. Don’t passively react to deadlines (or the lack thereof, rather). UPDATE: oops did not finish anything last week, other than a few Singles Jukebox Blurbs Of Historical Importance. In the early weeks of January I... guess I wrote reams of Tolkien meta? And did a super-long writing meme haaaaa.


Bonus resolution: try to bullshit less on the Internet. No one likes a know-it-all. (Leaving high school behind is a forever-ongoing process.)
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In chronological order of deadline/disaster potential:

Trip to London: done (and awesome!)
One Week One Band: DONE (apart from straggling posts on my own Tumblr which I'm writing as I can; compilation post to come)
Christmas gift shopping: done (see - trip to London)
Client #1 presentations A, B: done
Put winter tires on car: done
Renew health card/driver's license: done
Pay rent: TODAY
Laundry and cleaning: all done by tonight! This should hold til next weekend when the major writing rush'll be over
Christmas decoration: finish on ad hoc basis this weekend (buy outdoor lights???)
Holiday party #1: December 15
Going to see The Hobbit, which needs scheduling since it's a three-hour time block: December 16

Client #2 writeup: December 17, finish this weekend for Monday review
The Singles Jukebox Amnesty Week #2: ongoing December 16-18 (try to get a head start this weekend)
OWOB theme week: December 17 (H. poss. amenable to accepting last-minute entry ~Dec 23rd), DO NOT FORGET TO WRITE THIS
Client #1 presentation C: ~December 19
Yuletide story: December 20, 8PM, NOT STARTED -- this is the horrendous stickler obv; I'll have to decide before Sunday if I'm going to default for lack of time, which I really really do not want to do
Christmas cards: NOT STARTED... ... ...hopefully everyone will be OK with getting their cards AFTER the 25th
Christmas gift wrapping: December 24, NOT STARTED
CHRISTMAS: December 24-25
Holiday party #2: December 27
Holiday party #3: December 29


I've written 12-15K this month easily, and I need to pull another ~10K or so out of my hat between now and the 20th. I should not be online, like, AT ALL right now. XD
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Burning Man after-party Saturday night was unexpectedly awesome. (That is, I figured it would be pretty awesome, but it was psychologically difficult to drag myself there -- and once I was there, it was even more awesome than I expected. I went with spiced Barbancourt and frozen passion fruit pulp, returned with Ypioca Silver and an ale from Vermont. The lesson to be learnt is that a party cooler is essential household furniture, even in a Canadian November.) Couldn't make the Richie Hawtin/Loco Dice college campus tour last night, though, despite optimistically paid-for ticket: I had to lead a client workshop this morning, stayed up past midnight sans dinner preparing for it, and after that clubbing just wasn't going to happen. The flesh is weak, but on the other hand, guys -- Monday night. At least the workshop went well.

Also, on Friday I get to visit a hydro dam for work! So that's looking up.

Now going home to take out the trash and do some cooking before heading to the radio station. Signs point to a red wine-fueled comedy rant in Mandarin, regardless of the actual outcome of the American elections. Once that's over I might have something to say about, I dunno, Scott Forstall's firing and the fall of iOS skeuomorphism or something.
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Subdee came up to Montreal for a few days! Sunday evening through Wednesday morning. We went to see The Avengers again on Monday night. XD;

Was woken up at 5AM on Tuesday morning by extremely loud thunder and lightning. Got up, checked the windows, went back to bed and dreamt fuzzily of Thor getting angry and bashing things. It looked over by the time I got up properly, but then there was the mother of all summer thunderstorms between 5pm and 6pm - through 5th floor sheet-glass windows it resembled the inside of a waterfall turned 90 degrees sideways, light refracting so that the air was blue. Environment Canada issued a tornado(!) warning. There were extensive flash floods in southwest and downtown Montreal, because our infrastructure is designed to handle snowmelt, not this tropical storm shit. XD; (The store under my apartment had basement flooding, but my place was OK.)

The alarm system in the Bell Campus got knocked out and started screeching, fire trucks were called, the elevators stopped working so one had to take the fire escape down. There was an inch of water between the stairs and the door on the ground floor. To cap it off that damnable red-winged blackbird headbutted me again as I was running from the door to the bus shelter. For the third time!! (╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻

Oh well. MUTEK starts today (there was interesting conference talk stuff earlier on that I didn't get a chance to go to).
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1) Interviewed Olympic divers at the FINA Canada Cup Grand Prix, for the radio station. )

So yeah. Avengers movie: only the second-nicest collection of butts on view this weekend. XD

2) Speaking of the Avengers movie, after the chatter on [personal profile] sub_divided's reaction post I've decided to take the whole thing apart, matchup by matchup, and see how it ticks. XD So that'll be a separate post. I have to say, this is the first time I've gone to see a movie on opening weekend when it's already been playing the Philippines for a week - two weeks?

My non-spoilery take on it )

3) Next week: seeing three Sophocles plays at the TNM, in the controversial Mouawad adaptation, BECAUSE OF REASONS. Not a trilogy: it's The Trachiniae, Antigone, and Electra. I haven't been to the theatre in who knows how long. I was vaguely thinking that the movies had begun to compete in price, but no more student discounts alas.

4) May is the International Biennale of Digital Art in Montreal, which sort of merges into MUTEK but is split off from Elektra. Whatever. May is the Black-Clad Hipsters Not Dancing While They Stream Avant-Garde Techno Visualizations Over Their Personal Mobile Computing Devices Month. Instead of going to see the Avengers movie on Friday I went to the Contemporary Art Museum for an Alva Noto set, because I am a sad Carsten Nicolai stan who found out about this at the 11th hour and got ridiculously excited. I forgot that techno at the museum is played punishingly loud. This track was a complete monster.

5) EDIT1 -- oops, forgot that it was #musicdiaryproject week! It always sneaks up on me. Posts to come on Tumblr at some point. Awkwardly it is nearly 2PM and I have not listened to any music today at all.

6) EDIT2 -- Obviously, now I feel obliged to rewrite the second chapter of that story about Steve Rogers, which has been lingering at 85% completion for like two months. In a spot of counter-programming, I'm also trying to finish up and post the giftfic I sent to [livejournal.com profile] canis_m - that is, she got it, it just wasn't the final draft. XD; at this rate [livejournal.com profile] maeran and [livejournal.com profile] bladderwrack ought to get their cards by September, I am so awesome you guys.
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As you may have guessed. Still, all planes and hotel rooms have been booked, none of my projects have gone down in flame-wreathed company politics, my business plan competition partner (ya rly) hasn't throttled me, and the person I interviewed last week took the job and will be starting after I get back. I even kept up with the Singles Jukebox and watched a couple of movies.

Now all I have to do is finished a bunch of take-home work that was due Friday EOD (hush hush), survive the next week (this involves waking up at 6 to interview a vice president in advance of a full-day meeting), and pack. XD;

Will post some movie reviews on Monday, I guess?
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Found my membership card and everything! This is a feat, okay. And went to the bank and paid all the bills and stuff, because it has thawed again and I can get around in Crocs. Took out the last Lymond book so I can finally finish it, A Moveable Feast for sororial unit because she wanted early 20th century and Hemingway and AMF is the only Hemingway I marked down as 100% BS-free (read it a decade ago and retain no content, only the feeling of the thing as per a lovely dream). And a bunch of Le Carrés, so I don't end up buying them. XD; No net savings were had because I then went to Bureau en Gros and blew $100 mysteriously on office supplies. When I was 15 I wanted nothing more out of adulthood than the ability to splurge on multi-coloured gel pens and silver bristol board whenever I felt like it, I suppose.

The two Le Carrés I had read before TTSS were The Little Drummer Girl, which I thought was pretty good but depressing, and The Tailor of Panama, which I loved. (This was undergrad, if not high school, since I know I read them a while before the movie of the latter came out.) This time I am starting at the top with FIRST PUBLISHED SMILEY NOVEL Call for the Dead, which is perfectly competent but very "first 100,000 words are for practice" compared to the later books. XD; In fact in a lot of ways it feels like a dry run for TTSS. Cut for mild spoilers. )

The other thing is I watched TTSS-the-movie THREE TIMES over the weekend, because other ppl wanted to see it, only not at the same time. XD; It stood up to the treatment, mind you. I have some extra points to make now but I have to get going from work.

***

Have gone on to The Spy Who Came In Out Of The Cold. If the movie were going to be remade now they'd get Fassbender and Skarsgård in. Smiley lets Control use his place for assignations like a spy version of poor Jack Lemmon out of The Apartment (one is not told but assumes Ann is FOREVER MISSING). Incidentally, Smiley's home in the movie is all dark and burnished and has that trendy Sherlock-ian retro-busy pattern thing going on, but the 70s BBC TV series gives him a WHITE ON WHITE modernist living room, rolling. The china figurines are canon, but one suspects the giant painting of irises was not the dude's own first pick.
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On ent.sina.com.cn.

In the Wenhui News.

Sorry for not translating; I don't actually expect this to be interesting to anyone else, I just need to archive them somewhere. XD;

The family funeral was yesterday - had to wait until the Chinese New Year holidays were done. My cousin was there (he sent me a nice note that needs answering), and my uncle didn't deign to make it, both of which outcomes please me. Well; I'm not there either, of course. Blah blah work money excuses, and also it would just have been hard. No one expected me to come (I come from an immensely practical family, not to mention one where everyone keeps bad medical etc. news from all the rest), though my parents seem to feel I should be there for the public memorial the film studio will organize in late March. Which will be completely empty of meaning, as far as I'm concerned, but I was considering travelling to Asia in the spring anyway.

The hilarious thing is, the Chinese government had just given him a lifetime achievement award in the arts, like two months ago! Him and a 93-year-old, who immediately passed on as well. Damned thing is evidently a jinx. It comes with ONE MILLION RENMINBI (I am serious) which I guess comforts the families not a little. My grandmother can use it to renovate her dereliction of a peerlessly-located apartment, now that she'll be shipping my grandfather's stuff off to various exhibits, but... she probably won't. orz
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Came home from Igloofest in the small hours of Saturday, emptied out the pockets of my coat, dropped a twoonie coin on the floor, lunged to grab it before it rolled under the oven, and somehow slipped and totally destroyed my left little toe. Cut for gory details. )

Long story short: doc taped it up in 15 seconds and dismissed me without an x-ray, as "it's probably broken but treatment is six weeks of taping regardless." I'm meant to stay off it, of course. I'm not cancelling Chicago as there's hardly any point - everything's prepaid and non-refundable XD; - but it'll be less of a walking holiday than I envisioned, aha. As for the rest of my schedule I'll take it as it comes. It's stopped hurting (much) and I can limp around without too much difficulty, and if it were July I would have zero compunction about taking the train to Ottawa, interviewing Bell higher-ups, etc. in my raging eccentric fashion statement yellow Crocs; but it is not July, and once it freezes and starts snowing again my outdoors mobility is done unless I can get my damned foot back into my damned boot. Still, if I have to pick three weeks out of the year to work from home and do nothing else but read John Le Carre novels, the wasteland between the end of Igloofest and my birthday is the easiest writeoff.

So

Jan. 22nd, 2012 01:35 pm
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My grandfather passed away yesterday morning (the evening of the 21st, Shanghai time).

I find it difficult to talk about death except via inappropriate humour. As such, I am now confessing to the Internet at large that I don't know what the dress protocol is when a beloved relative dies on Chinese New Year. I mean, I can't wear red... but I can't wear black/white either. It's Chinese New Year. If any less-faily Chinese person who knows the answer reads this, please reply in the next 30 minutes as I really do have to leave the house to acquire food.
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All the ones I've seen are too long and require too much thinking about points that are not that relevant. XD; So I have made my own.

TRAVEL )

WRITING )

BOOKS )

MOVIES )

MUSIC )

FAMILY AND FRIENDS )

OTHER LIFE EVENTS )

SKILLS AND GOALS )

INTERNET )

FANDOM )
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TIME TO BLOG, WHAT IS THIS EVEN

1) For Yuletide, I received Another Man's Son, which is a what-if story about how Dio met Giorno (it is awesome and chilling and involves Arrrt). YES, LADIES AND GERMS, I HAVE CAUSED MORE JOJO FIC TO EXIST. I really did, because I nominated the fandom. And the writer had some small part in it, naturally. XDD You should all go read and comment, because it is v. good indeed.

2) Feel free to guess my Yuletide story! For, uh, credit? XD A prize yet to be determined? (This applies to anyone who was not at my IRL housewarming party and remarked on my whiteboard scribbles.) I will make the game super-duper-easy: I've talked about the fandom, the post's not fallen off my DW page yet, and the story itself is an Obvious Sabina Story(tm). It was completely written and edited in 36 hours - that also covered two decent nights of sleep, a four-hour work meeting, and several loads of laundry. Yeah, I have no idea.

3) PENGUINSPOILERS ARE NUCLEAR, I am three eps behind and downloading as we speak. Will comment after I'm done, no doubt, unless of course I just flail and repost fanart on Tumblr as I've been doing all along.

Ikuhara could piss me off at the finale (and it won't be beating Utena, anyhow), but I have to say I enjoyed the process of watching an anime week-by-week, actually looking forward to the next episode, and not getting bored halfway and stopping. I think the last time that happened was Monster, literally. Since then, if I've managed to watch an anime TV series entire, it's because I marathoned it (or large stretches of it).

4) A white Christmas! I had grown resigned to us having stolen London's December, so this is extra gratifying (despite having to drive in terrible conditions today).

Cut for random updates on the state of Sabina in December )
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1) The Writing: So I may have signed up for Nano, for the first time since 2003. AhahahahaHA. I will also be nominating for Yuletide as soon as those are up, despite the fact that the new system shows every sign of being crankier than the old system, and at this rate the story itself will need to be written in like three weeks. What the heck do I call Ono Natsume/basso's Italy-verse? It doesn't have a canonical anything on AO3. I don't think it has fic at all, anywhere.

2) The Hair: I have a new hairstyle, as a result of neglecting the old hairstyle until it got incredibly long and straggly, then going to a salon that botched the cut, then fleeing in dudgeon to another salon that fixed the cut for the sort of $$$ I would associate with deductibles for elective surgery. Which, in a way, this was. (Due to massive repeated childhood/adolescence home haircut trauma, I am more terrified by haircuts than by dental work. In fact, a bad haircut is the only thing that will give me a panic attack, whereas I've been known to doze off in the dentist chair if no one is actively causing me pain.)

The hair is now shoulder length and VERY CURLY, which causes it to be VERY VOLUMINOUS. Think Chara circa 1992. The stylists kept talking about J.Lo, which I think demonstrates that gays with refined taste in R&B have LONG memories, because J.Lo hasn't had curly hair since like the mid-90s.

3) The PSA: There is an arrrt gallery on Saint-Denis (under the Planete BD, next to a few funky furniture stores) that sells original penciled/inked comic/BD pages. It's pretty much all it sells, in fact, other than some toys and comic-style illustrations - flipbooks full of them, like poster art. A signed original colour insert by Dany runs in the $3000 range; a random inked page out of a random issue of Young Justice or Iron Man runs in the $200 range. Is that normal? Like... is this really what happens to the original art after the comics get printed, Marvel/DC/the Franco-Belgian publishers sell it off in bulk to the art gallery circuit? XD;

4) The Blog: Alas, I am using Tumblr more these days. But I would encourage you guys to remember that the main Tumblr is "minimoonstar", and the fan Tumblr is "genufa", and that the petronia Twitter is not active, sorry, I can only update one Twitter from my phone and I need that shiz for work.

5) The Movies: Hara-Kiri, Drive, Take Shelter. I also basically wrote out my post on Melancholia but it was eaten by Via Rail's wifi. Short version: I will punch Lars Von Trier in the face, though the contents of the film are excellent and I would recommend it to anyone who was able to play through the first Kingdom Hearts without barfing, and does not find portrayals of depression too triggery. Also, Tomboy. Don't let me forget that one.

6) The Upcoming Content: I may be doing a bit of volunteering for OTW. IDK, I was contacted and it occurred to me that while I don't have the patience or the bandwidth or the skill set to make the sort of contribution I see from others (and is also why I never volunteer for online fandom projects, in general), I could... do the stuff I do at my day job? Basically. So we'll see how that discussion pans out.

What I really did put myself in the queue for is One Week One Band, upcoming, in January. Basically I am waffling between Charlotte Gainsbourg and Mylène Farmer, but I have two months to decide. (Jane Birkin would be in the running, but writing about Jane basically implies writing about ALL THE GAINSBOURGS. Which may or may not be a good thing, in terms of scoping the project. I want this to be lightweight; I have a horrible feeling I could barf out a 33 1/3 on eg. the Libertines if I weren't careful. XD;)

Apartmental

Oct. 1st, 2011 08:09 pm
petronia: (tea or coffee?)
OK so, the most important point insofar as other people are concerned is that I'm no longer doing Chicago in October, because I spent that money on furniture. ^^;; Which is expensive! I'm thinking now of doing that run in February, for my birthday, unless ppl tell me February in Chicago is truly miserable (it can't be more miserable than Montreal, anyway).

I now have a double bed and nightstand, a worktable (the kind with glass you can put a flat light under for drawing) and swivel chair, a sofa (in a gentleman's-clubby brown leather that looks forgiving of Sherlockian stains), one of those 2x4 IKEA bookcases (as a side table for vinyl records), a slow cooker, a rice cooker, and an electric kettle. Wireless, and tea. That is enough to be going by. XD

Other stuff to acquire )

I should start sorting out my glassware and whatnot but I think I'll catch up on Penguindrum instead, since I've been avoiding spoilers for two days now. = =
petronia: (my pain)
Oh, never mind! I should probably try to get as many done of these as I can anyway, this week is far less busy than next week will be. I'll be doing press coverage of Fantasia and Nuits d'Afrique, have to attend a spate of out-of-office client meetings during the day, and [livejournal.com profile] sub_divided will be in town! None of which makes for sitting at computer screens on beautiful summer afternoons, and thank goodness for that. This probably also means I should clear out my backlog of movie and book reviews. And the Madoka fic. XD;

I do have the last Dunnett sitting on my table at home. I've just been holding off on it because I have the impression I can't do anything else when I'm reading her. Instead I've been reading Heyer XD; Cotillion - it's a crack shoujo manga, basically.

***

14 – Ratings – how high are you comfortable with going? Have you ever written higher? If you're comfortable with NC-17, have you ever been shocked by finding that the story you're writing is G-rated instead?

Shocked? Is "shocked" the word? It's more like "aahhhh fuckballs this is for SSBB, I gotta make the best of it". Anyway, in the majority of cases it's "graphic depictions of violence" behind my M-ratings on AO3 (which in my mind is roughly equivalent to "R-rated movie"), not to mention character death, drug use, explicit language, non-con, and underage. XD;; I have no actual block against writing NC17 sex scenes, it's just that I tend to produce plots in which they're structurally unnecessary. I have an immense appreciation for writers who can tell a fully-realized story, beginning, end, character development and all, within the context of a sexual encounter that isn't dodgy for some other reason, but that's not really my artistic focus. So to speak. orz
petronia: (tea or coffee?)
As some of you know, in between dealing with the Chinese visa office I have also been dealing with a mystery insect infestation in the parental flat orz||| haaa it's not all been negative, I will hereby list all the positive/interesting/fun stuff I have done/bought/experienced on this trip.

HAIR. I got my hair permed, for the first time since the early 90s AFAIK, because curls are the in-thing again (much less drastic than the 80s/early 90s Azn 'fro) and I want to be achieve more interesting hairstyles without having to use the blow dryer or other instruments with which I'm entirely inept. XD;

ARRRT. sculpture gardens )

China and India )

** "Tournament of Shadows" sounds kinda like a second-season ep of Sherlock, I thought, peering at the giant map... and then I clued in that must've been the original context for Sherlock Holmes kicking it with the Dalai Lama, bawling, it wasn't spaghetti monster nonsense on Doyle's part.

SHOPPING. prices have risen, Japanese and Korean designs are easily available in Montreal boutiques these days, and IMO it's fair to say the looks are less regionally distinctive... but it's also me. I realized recently that I'd accumulated a load of fussy outfits, and was in a mood for nothing but the perfect white cardigan and a new silhouette/hemline not yet adopted by fast fashion on masse. XD; Uniqlo outerwear )

The aptronymous Qipu Street )

Probably what I like best is my lime green poufy jacket XD the collection of attention-seeking outerwear only grows. It's depressing when one sees 9 out of 10 ppl wearing navy/grey/black all winter in the metro, yanno?

TBC: books, food, some music...

October 2017

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