beatrice_otter: Sha're in a blue veil (Shau'ri)
For those of you who don't know, the Barna research group is a group that focuses on researching religious trends in America.  Although they are very DEFINITELY Christian and doing this for a Christian audience, they are also quite firm in their belief that in order to make good choices people need good, reliable information to base it on.  So they're pretty good about being as fair and accurate as they can in their research practices.

Their newest finding?  That in the last year, public opinion in America has swung quite dramatically in favor of immigration, diversity, and refugees, with most population segments adding at least 10% to their approval.  And practicing Christians who believe the US should welcome refugees more than doubled between 2016 and 2017, which is why there are currently more religious leaders across the board speaking to refugee and immigration issues.  (Evangelicals are the lone holdouts, surprise, surprise.)  For example, the Christian community is pretty much united in opposition to ending or limiting the DREAM program.  Even the Evangelicals agree there.

Unfortunately, the shift doesn't seem to be from racists, nationalists, and other right-wingers changing their minds.  Where the shift seems to be coming from is the people who were undecided a year ago moving towards open-mindedness, tolerance, and compassion.  So it's not that the whole country is moving towards tolerance, it's that the people in the middle are moving leftward on this issue.  Which is good, don't get me wrong!  It just means we've got our work cut out for us to reach out to the Evangelicals and the FOX newsers and all and help them see things in a different light.

(Obviously I'm not talking to people who aren't safe or wouldn't be safe if they tried to reach out, whether psychologically or physically.

US politics

  • Sep. 20th, 2017 at 9:33 AM
cesy: "Cesy" - An old-fashioned quill and ink (Default)
Hope not Hate is coming to the US, to counter the rise of international hate groups. American friends, you can sign up here.

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Early Morning Surprise

  • Sep. 19th, 2017 at 10:33 PM
lurkingcat: (Default)
The changing light patterns outside are waking me up before my alarm goes off at the moment. Which isn't great for my sleep patterns. It's totally brilliant if you're Kheldar though because he usually manages to sneak into the bedroom when I get up and go to the bathroom.

Today it was not so great for Kheldar. I woke up about 45 minutes early and he got to hop into the space between me and the edge of the bed and have a good wash and go to sleep and then... then my alarm went off.

I got out of bed, trying not to tip him off the duvet on the way, and turned the alarm off. Meanwhile Kheldar's Loud Noise Threat Assessment System attempted to wake the rest of the cat up. What mostly happened was a thud as he hit the floor and then nothing. I looked down. Kheldar's head tipped up so that his eyes could look at me. His eyes were open but I don't think he was really seeing anything. He'd frozen in place with one hind leg off the floor and one front leg off the floor because loud noise had now stopped and his body didn't know what it was supposed to be doing any more and most of him was still asleep anyway.

So I picked him up and put him back on the duvet and he kind of fell over sideways into a cat cushion and went straight back to sleep. He'd clearly had a busy night and I thought at least one of us should get the opportunity of some more sleep.

He's still mildly disgruntled about the whole business this evening.

IMG_20170919_214114
aelfgyfu_mead: Aelfgyfu as a South Park-style cartoon (Default)
I'm still trying to catch up on books, and as I've said before, I can no longer remember when I read some or in what order. But I remember that I read them, and I even remember what I think about them, and those are the important things!

Margot Lee Shetterly, Hidden Figures )


Allie Brosh, Hyperbole and a Half )


N.K. Jemisin, The Dreamblood duology )


Anne Brontë, The Tenant of Wildfell Hall )

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Kesiva Vechasima Tova

  • Sep. 17th, 2017 at 7:00 PM
fignewton: (Default)
With Rosh Hashanah starting Thursday night, I'll be offline until after Yom Kippur, around the start of October. Until then, I wish all of you a year blessed with health, safety, and happiness.

Renewals and Cancellations and whatnot

  • Sep. 15th, 2017 at 8:21 PM
donutsweeper: (Default)
Dark Matter, which I had just started watching, was not renewed for a fourth season but Killjoys got a fourth and fifth (and final) season which does make me happy. There's so much world building in Killjoys, especially things that you didn't even notice until later on when other stuff is explained which always impresses me. It also features canon f/f, m/m, many POCs and had a large storyline which featured disabled actors playing disabled characters which is the kind of all encompassing diversity I definitely think is a trend that needs to be seen more often in mainstream media.

Unfortunately Stitchers, which I posted about several times, was cancelled as well, and on a rather big cliffhanger. *sigh*

The Midnight Texas finale will air this Monday. It's been a decent enough watch, but I'm not sure I'll care if there's a second season or not. (It's also possible it won't make sense for their to be another season, it kind of looks like it might be more of a 'television event' kind of thing rather than seasonal tv show.)

Yuletide is ramping up (nominations close soonish). I made my noms and am crossing my fingers one thing I nommed gets in (it's weird and rare and whether or not it's considered a fandom could be up for debate). One of the best things about yuletide is seeing the tagset and reading letters and discovering all sorts of new or forgotten fandoms. I doubt I'll be able to match the output I made last year, but I'm hoping to at least write my average of 10 fics or so. *crosses fingers*

So...

  • Sep. 15th, 2017 at 11:31 PM
lurkingcat: (Default)
... this new laptop business is working out well. I mean, I have done other things today but there's certainly been a lot of marvelling at the wonders of a top-notch piece of new technology compared to the old faithful beast that I've been bumbling along with.

There's also been a certain amount of amusement in the discovery that I hadn't been hearing some of the newer albums in the household properly due to the sound of the fans. I'd gotten so used to the noise that machine made that my brain was mostly ignoring it. Today's been a bit of a revelation.

In other news Special Agent Kheldar would like to register a complaint about the repeated incidents in which water fell from the sky and interrupted his patrols.

Happy birthday!

  • Sep. 15th, 2017 at 2:52 PM
aelfgyfu_mead: (Jack&Daniel)
Happy birthday to [personal profile] fignewton! I hope you're having a good one, and thank you for all you continue to do for SG-1 fandom!

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Tidying Up

  • Sep. 14th, 2017 at 11:46 PM
lurkingcat: (Default)
I spent part of yesterday tidying up my old laptop and transferring files onto a USB disk. Including the stuff that I transferred across to that laptop eight years ago, meant to do something about and never did. I'll get to that folder one of these days, really I will.

Today I got to spend time with [personal profile] teebee again and... the new laptop arrived a day earlier than originally anticipated. I am going to bed any minute, really I am. I just need to install... er... actually quite a bit. It's amazing how much two factor authentication I've got switched on these days. My poor phone isn't used to receiving so many texts.

And I'm leaving this link here mostly to remind myself to read it later because I had a game tonight and it's looong. Jenny Trout's review of Handbook for Mortals, the first few paragraphs of which made me giggle. And which also contain a useful link to a write up of the whole NYT bestsellers list scam.

Death of a tree

  • Sep. 14th, 2017 at 4:45 PM
aelfgyfu_mead: SG-1 in the infirmary (Team-infirmary)
When our across-the-street neighbors cut back the big tree that arches so far over the street that it was dropping leaves and limbs on our lawn, I applauded. When I realized they weren't trimming but cutting down the whole big tree, I was sad, but I figured it was one of those that may have gotten rotten inside: we get a lot in the Tampa area. Many live oaks were planted 50–60 years ago, and they get worn away inside by rain, insects, and rodents, and people don't realize until something bad happens. When they had another tree or two removed from their backyard, again, I was sad, but I thought they were being sensible.

As the hurricane approached, I was very relieved they had removed at least the big one: no worries about that!

Irma passed through Monday in the very early hours. It's now Thursday, a little more than 72 hours—and they're cutting down another, much younger tree that looks quite healthy. I saw no signs of damage to it from the hurricane at all, though many other trees lost limbs or toppled.

I'm baffled and again sad: why would you remove a tree that withstood a hurricane and looks to have many good years ahead of it? Especially after so many trees have been lost! Are they planning for future hurricanes? Are they tired of blowing leaves? (Someone in the house blows leaves almost every day. We've seen him do it in the rain. No leaf can be allowed to lie on that driveway for more than a few hours.)

We're doing fine after the hurricane, unlike some friends, who are still without power and face big clean-ups. I seem, however, to be terribly distractible lately. . . .

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Sep. 14th, 2017

  • 8:47 AM
beatrice_otter: Yuletide (Yuletide)
I know that only about 1/3 of all participants use the nomination coordinating spreadsheet, but that is making things very hard for me.  Because I would assume that Rivers of London, which has been a perennial Yuletide fandom for years, would be nominated?  Because it always is?  BUT IT IS NOT ON THE SPREADSHEET?!?  And if someone else will be nominating it, I would like to use my slots for other fandoms that pretty much won't be nominated by anyone else, BUT WHAT IF THIS IS THE YEAR FANDOM FAILS ME?!?  I wasn't in RoL fandom last year!

Here are some of the other fandoms I am considering nominating, and I need to make a decision like, NOW.

Random Harvest (1942)--classic, classic melodrama starring the ineffable Greer Garson.  Tropetastic.

Archandroid - Janelle Monae--another one that others often nom, and there hasn't been new canon for a while, but always reliable for some great worldbuilding fic.

Kitty Foyle (1940)--Ginger Rogers showing why she is an AWESOME actress.  I want the fic that covers the original ending, the one that the studio and the censors made them change: she keeps the baby and raises him out of wedlock.

Hobson's Choice (1954)--I want more of Maggie and Will!  So much more.


Here are the fandoms I would request fic in if someone else nommed them, but wouldn't take up a nomination slot for:
Lord Peter Wimsey - Dorothy Sayers--classic cozy mysteries, and I love Peter and Harriet and Bunter all together.
The Moon is a Harsh Mistress - Heinlein
My Fair Lady
Batman Beyond

And, again, Batman Beyond is pretty likely to be nommed, and so is Peter Wimsey, but NEITHER IS ON THE SPREADSHEET OMG.

I just need to figure out a) whether I can take the risk of RoL not being nominated, and b) if so whether to drop Kitty Foyle or Hobson's Choice.  (If I nom RoL, Kitty and Hobson are both gone.)

Looking at that list, I am REALLY into classic movies this year.  I guess.

ETA: There is a second spreadsheet of noms, and Rivers of London is on it.  Peter, Thomas, Varvara, Seawoll, Lesley, Stephanopoulos, and Sahra are the characters.  I have accordingly nominated Random Harvest, the Archandroid, and Hobson's Choice.

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A Trip to the Zoo

  • Sep. 13th, 2017 at 10:42 PM
lurkingcat: (Default)
We went to the zoo yesterday and the British weather managed to mostly not rain on us.

Cut for photos )

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Internet restored!

  • Sep. 12th, 2017 at 12:48 PM
aelfgyfu_mead: (Pushing Daisies)
Hello, old friends (and new)!

We got through Irma just fine. We didn't even lose power. We did, however, lose Internet before the hurricane even got here, and my sad little old iPhone is so slow at doing things online that it didn't seem practical to try to get on DW and LJ for an update until we had Internet again.

We were a little west of the path, and we had lots of wind and rain. I am grateful to God that we are unhurt, and there's no real damage to our home. We had to wet-vacuum out one area, but we'd expected that and had moved everything important out or off the floor. We had a couple of drips. A lot of tree limbs fell, some onto the roof, but none did any damage. A neighbor with a chain saw helped, and we got those limbs all to the curb for pickup yesterday already. (Hey, we had no Internet; what else was there to do?)

2/3 of Florida lost power. We know many people still without power—which is bad when it's 84° (heat index 90°) before 1 pm. Many people are returning from other states unsure what they'll find at home—or even when they'll get there. Some areas aren't allowing people in because of flooding; or a lack of gas, clean water, and food. (One of those people was shouting, "I'll never leave again!" as I heard on a sound clip on NPR this morning. He might change his mind after he sees where he lived.) Others are waiting a long time for flights, or for gas to finish the drive.

So if you pray, please keep praying for all the survivors of recent hurricanes, and for those who died. We appreciate your positive energies and your prayers and feel blessed to have come through so well.

Love y'all!

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Sep. 10th, 2017

  • 5:32 PM
neekabe: pile of thin rope (Default)
Heading into cooler weather now, I pulled out my pants after several months of not wearing them. Turns out over those several months I have gone from snug to uncomfortably tight, so I guess that's a sign to maybe start paying more attention to what I eat (conveniently the Poutineville next door to us has closed)

It'll also help that Karate starts up again this week. I spent most of July and August sedentary. I'll see if I can get myself motivated to start the Couch 2 4K again. I was doing well on that before we went to Japan, but then 2 weeks of travel derailed me, and then the kids came up for 3 weeks so it's been hard. But I liked doing it so I think I'll try it again.

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