jazzfish: Owly, reading (Owly)
What are you reading?

The March North, by Graydon Saunders. The beautiful thing about these is that there's always more than I saw last time. In this case, the context of having read the sequel sheds a great deal of light on a number of conversational asides and worldbuilding choices.

I mean, there's also the Captain's massively understated sense of humour, understated to the point that I am not entirely convinced it exists at all. ("Do that, and it's a tossup whether the [Army] or Parliament hang you. One specific time, it was both, because neither was willing to not do it themselves.") The flashes of gorgeously descriptive prose. The fundamental /decency/ of the Commonweal as a society. The occasional heartbreaking passage. The giant firebreathing warsheep named Eustace, covered in "a grey stiff wirelike substance" because of course Eustace has steel wool. The almost total lack of gendered identifiers.

So good. I'd love to do a review but I don't think I'm capable of distilling what it is that makes these so awesome.

What did you just finish reading?

I needed to see how much of myself I recognised in a particular character / situation, so I found it necessary to reread The Last Hot Time by John M. Ford. (Such hardship.) Answer: less than I'd expected, but more than I would have expected had I thought about it a bit more.

This is such a weird book. It's much less about the "plot," and more about the world and the main character's ... growth and relationships? Something like that. This time through I noticed how little space the antagonist actually takes up in the book. It's kind of impressive. And still Danny's loneliness and damage and deliberate isolation get me every single time.

In some indescribable way I think of Last Hot Time as a companion piece to Growing Up Weightless. Weightless ends at a much darker and more bittersweet place; LHT breaks me open no less despite its wonderfully satisfying ending.

What do you think you'll read next?

A Succession Of Bad Days and Safely You Deliver, and then I have no idea.
jazzfish: A red dragon entwined over a white. (Draco Concordans)
Words are inadequate (the poor craftsman curses his tools) to describe the beauty of our coasts, but words are what I have available.

--John M. Ford, "Chromatic Aberration"
Twenty-six years ago, give or take, I kept seeing "How Much For Just the Planet?" on the spinner-rack at the Fayetteville library. I never checked it out, though. I do wonder what that might have done for my reading habits.

Ten years and a couple months ago I read Heat of Fusion and Other Stories for the second time. This time I got it. "Chromatic Aberration" and the Hemingway pastiche "The Hemstitch Notebooks" remain two of my absolute favourite short stories, for wildly different reasons.

Ten years less a few days ago I cracked up at a Star Wars joke hidden in a period discussion of Renaissance theatre in "The Dragon Waiting."

Five years and nine months (ish) ago I got married under the Declaration of Unity.

Five years less a few weeks ago, TNH asked me "Who do you want to write like?" and my eyes filled up with tears and I mumbled "Mike Ford."

Ten years and a day ago I sat down at a computer to start a class on using MicroStrategy and pulled up my Livejournal friends page, and the first thing I saw was a post from Jo Walton headlined "John M. Ford, 1957-2006".
Hush, now, at the glass clouding, hush at the silicon crumbling, hush be still at the metal flowing atom by atom, spare no protest for evaporation and cold welding and decay, for Time shall take its own.

--John M. Ford, "All Our Propagation"
Footnote: If you've not read "Against Entropy" in its original setting, do. It's the first comment. Note the timestamp on the post, and on the comment.
jazzfish: an open bottle of ether, and George conked out (Ether George)
0) ... and still insists he reads of ghosts.

1) One amusing in retrospect bit I didn't mention earlier: when I arrived at the train station in Toronto (after an unpleasant redeye flight featuring loud drunk bachelor-partiers, and a wholly pleasant ride on the new no-longer-$38 train from the airport to the train station) I attempted to present my passport so I could pick up my ticket and ... opened to a picture of [personal profile] uilos. Apparently our passports got switched for the wrong wallets the last time we travelled (down to the used bookstores with Steph in December). Luckily I had my own Nexus card and my own PR card, and the train folks were happy enough to take the Nexus card, but it made for a somewhat tense ride down.

E FedExed me my passport so I could get on a plane to go home. I could *probably* have worked it out with just the Nexus card, but I had used the passport to buy the ticket, and better safe than stranded in Buffalo.

2) Speaking of, home from the Gathering as of eleven-thirty last night. Still tired, still heavily overpeopled. I didn't take care of myself as well as I could have this year; the weather was miserable for the first half of the week and for whatever reason once it nicened up I still didn't go outside and wander. Something to bear in mind for next year.

3) More on this later, but: consider this another plug for Graydon Saunders's Commonweal novels (available in ebook from the Google Play store). Reread the first (The March North) and read the first third or so of the second (A Succession of Bad Days) over the week. Comparisons with the work of Mr Ford are not inapt. The bone-deep understanding of trauma and healing and loneliness and identity is still there in Graydon's work, it's just even further down than in The Dragon Waiting. Or maybe I just haven't reread these enough times for it to be obvious to me.

4) It seems I have a strong predilection for flawed characters in difficult situations who are trying their damnedest. I have no further use for stories about terrible people being terrible, and I think this means I should let the Joe Abercrombie books go.

4a) Losing people you’re responsible for hurts. If it didn’t, the Line wouldn’t give you a warrant of commission.

If it stops, they take the warrant away.


--Graydon Saunders, "The March North"

5) I am returning the nameless new laptop. A week with Taranis has convinced me that I don't need to spend an exorbitant sum of money on a new machine, not yet and likely not for another couple of years. I *do* need a battery replacement and could do with a clean reinstall, but that can wait for the weekend.

book book

Dec. 1st, 2015 09:58 pm
jazzfish: Owly, reading (Owly)
What are you reading right now?

Nearly through Trouble on Triton, by Samuel R. Delany. Best summed up as "Christ, what an asshole: The Bron Helstrom Story".

The first (and only previous) time I read this, it was for Marc Zaldivar's class (either sophomore English or F&SF, I forget which), well over a decade ago. I have distinct memories of enjoying the book, and thinking there wasn't a lot of plot but there were some really interesting philosophical ideas in there. This time I'm mostly enjoying the book, and though there's not much plot it's a fascinating character study of an unpleasant frustrating person, and the character study has some neat parallels in the interesting philosophical ideas. I am also not infrequently wincing in recognition and semi-recognition.

I am both a better reader and a more self-aware human being than I was in university. I knew both of these things, more or less; I just haven't really had the first driven home to me recently.

What did you just finish reading?

The March North by Graydon Saunders (ebook only, alas). It's... "military fantasy" is I guess the best descriptor, and it's not inaccurate, but it's painfully incomplete. Anyone with any interest in subtle deep worldbuilding, and incidentally things like giant warsheep and chemistry a la Ignition! / Sand Won't Save You This Time, ought to check it out.

Several people have compared it to the work of John M. Ford, which is also not inaccurate, but gave me very much the wrong idea. I don't think of Ford's books as dense or impenetrable or subtle, although they very much are. The first thing I think of when I think of a Mike Ford book is the emotional depth of the characters. That's less present in The March North. This is not really a criticism; that's not the point of the book, and it's well worth reading anyhow!

What do you think you'll read next?

Probaby the first of Delany's Neveryon books (there's an umlaut and an accent in that word somewhere). I never got around to reading all of Neveryon, and Trouble on Triton, its second appendix, and some scattered bits of the Neveryon cycle form a loose collection entitled "Some Remarks on the Modular Calculus," which is why I picked up Triton in the first place.

Somewhere in there I will almost certainly read Graydon's second book, A Succession Of Bad Days. I am not devouring it immediately in the hopes that the delay will tide me over until the third thru Nth come out.
jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Default)
Chaos has returned from being nuked. He spent most of the first day sleeping, and since then he's basically back to normal. It's good to have the right number of cats again. He goes back for a checkup in a month, and again sometime after that, but other than that he's done for awhile.

In other critter news, at least one of the local seagull nests has hatched and now has tiny fuzzy velociraptors. Also, there's a beaver living on one of the small islands in Lost Lagoon, or at least there was a couple of weeks ago. I haven't seen it since but dawn's been coming well before I get out to run.

What else... reread The Hobbit last week. Also rewatched the Rankin/Bass animated film, which manages to tell just about the entire story in under an hour and a half. It's got some decent voice acting (John Huston as Gandalf! Richard 'Have Gun Will Travel' Boone as Smaug!) and is very pretty. The character designs in particular are basically spot on, with the exception of the oddly green and twisted Wood-Elves. I'd known for ages that Rankin/Bass collaborated with a Japanese animation studio on a number of projects, including Hobbit and Last Unicorn; what I hadn't realised until Misty mentioned it is that that specific studio went on to become Ghibli, of Totoro fame.



It's Cheap, But Is It Overpriced?: "If this car wasn't disappointing, it wouldn't be anything at all."

Bill Watterson returns to the comics page: "The idea I proposed was that instead of having me get hit on the head, I would pretend that Pearls was being drawn by a precocious second grader who thought my art was crap. I named her 'Libby,' which I then shorted to 'Lib.' (Hint, hint: It’s almost 'Bill' backwards.)" See also the Washington Post story, with quotes from Watterson, and Andy Ihnatko on why Watterson was/is such a big deal.

Well, this is awful. National Zoo's Invertebrate Exhibit To Close June 22. I loved the invertebrate exhibit and am very sad to see it go.

In happier zoo-related news, Cat And Lynx Become Inseparable Friends: "According to the local people, the calico was homeless and happened to find food in the lynx's enclosure. ... The zoo adopted the cat so that she and her lynx friend could live together."

Four circles that don't intersect. As advertised. Ow.

The Near-Death of Grand Central Terminal, subtitled And How It Foretold The 2008 Financial Crisis: "Who would have been foolhardy enough to encourage a flailing railroad to buy up everything it could get its hands on and enter a protracted legal battle with the City of New York? Pretty much the entire American banking establishment, as it turned out."

All Our Propagation: A Play for Instruments by John M. Ford.

debeaching

May. 17th, 2014 09:08 am
jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Default)
I have Beached for a Week. I write this from the bedroom, where we're all packed and we can watch other people scurry around to load cars. I assume other people are also scurrying around upstairs cleaning the kitchen (for small values of 'other people'). (Breakfast burritos. Dear lord, the carnage. As of last night, bacon grease was still spattered all over the glass stovetop and the floor, from two mornings ago.)

Beachin' was good-but-not great, which is all I ask. Not being at work is its own greatest good these days. A decent amount of good gaming in good company. Minor kitchen frustration aside it was a fine vacation.

Incidentally, Rosemary Kirstein's Steerswoman books are now available on all major ebook platforms, for fairly cheap. Bonus: she gets the full profit from the ebook editions. Buy them!

In less pleasant news, rumor has it that Aspects, Mike Ford's unfinished last novel, will not be seeing print. This fills me with helpless rage, which is not an emotion I am used to dealing with.

... more later.
jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Default)
50 People On 'The Most Intellectual Joke I Know': I am of course partial to #13 but many of the rest are good as well.
#15: Q: Who does Polyphemus hate more than Odysseus?
A: Nobody!

Book of Lamentations: "Something has gone terribly wrong in the world; we are living the wrong life, a life without any real fulfillment. The newly published DSM-5 is a classic dsytopian novel in this mold." In which the DSM-V is reviewed.

As my tweet has gone viral both on tumblr and twitter...: "...I'm getting disturbed by how more than a few guys have responded by telling me that this tactic wouldn’t stop them, or that it would encourage them to hit on women more." ARGH ARGH ARGH the tags for the linked post are the best available expression of my headdeskery.

And the thing is, the guys saying 'haha that won't stop me' are saying that because they're getting a response, and any response is sufficient reason for them to keep going. (No response is sufficient reason for them to step it up.) There's no way for the target to 'win,' to get left alone. These aren't people who have any interest in her desires. It's the same dynamic as kids' teasing/bullying, and if these self-proclaimed grade-school-social-outcast geeks had any modicum of self-reflection they'd be deeply ashamed of themselves.

10 reasons you should stop being so irrationally upset about your hair being repeatedly set on fire: "3. Because Webster’s Dictionary defines 'fire' as 'a state, process, or instance of combustion in which fuel or other material is ignited and combined with oxygen, giving off light, heat, and flame.' I see neither light, heat, nor flame, but merely a progressive singeing, reddening of the scalp, and a sulfurous smell. Your hair is therefore not on fire by any definition of 'fire' of which I am aware."

Extinct tree grows anew from ancient jar of seeds unearthed by archaeologists: "For the next four decades, the ancient seeds were kept in a drawer at Tel Aviv's Bar-Ilan University. But then, in 2005, botanical researcher Elaine Solowey decided to plant one and see what, if anything, would sprout."

Robbing Banks for the CIA: "'Hey, I got this job for you where you're going to get paid 25K,' Carolina Villegas wrote. 'Doing what?' Torres asked. 'Robbing banks,' she texted. Torres started laughing. 'Is this a joke?' he wondered. Soon Villegas was on the phone explaining that it was a government job. And it was legal." (Spoiler: it wasn't actually legal.)

Priority Mail Large Flat Rate Board Game Box: "Fits two average-sized board games." I <3 the USPS.

Some thoughts on the state of screenwriting in 2013, or, why I have next to no desire to write a screenplay despite my love of dialogue: "If you want someone else to pay to make your screenplay into a movie, you must learn to work within commercially acceptable forms, otherwise you are of no use to Hollywood and they will not hire you."

New Metro subway cars signal the end of an era: "Eventually -- in the 2040s, probably -- the last remaining brown-striped aluminum subway car in the nation's capital will disappear." Also note that many of the cars from the original batch in the 1970s are still in service, which is both amazing (built to last!) and terrifying (built to 1970s safety standards!).
jazzfish: Barnaby from "Bone," text "Stupid, stupid rat meme!" (Rat Meme)
What are you reading?

I've made it about two-thirds through Alice Miller's The Drama of the Gifted Child. I am doing a lot of nodding and saying "yes, exactly" as I read this, which suggests it's good and relevant. Then a lot of what's there falls out of my head five minutes later, which suggests even more strongly that it's good and relevant, in ways that my brain is refusing to think about because they're scary/painful. I think I may need to reread this fairly soon after finishing it.

What did you recently finish reading?

Hardwired, by Walter Jon Williams. Mid-eighties cyberpunk, indebted in equal parts to Neuromancer and Zelazny's Damnation Alley. Fantastic if you're into that sort of thing. (I am.) Also, JMF's Web of Angels, a pre-Neuromancer cyberpunk novel. I think Hardwired may be the better book; it has certainly aged better, in both tech and storytelling. Web is not without its charms, though.

What do you think you’ll read next?

The books I have with me are Tristan Taormino's Opening Up and WJW's Voice of the Whirlwind (100-years-later sequel to Hardwired), so most likely one or both of those.
jazzfish: an open bottle of ether, and George conked out (Ether George)
Friday night I put a large number of things in a slightly less large number of boxes. Satyrday, tripped down to Bellingham with [personal profile] uilos and [livejournal.com profile] culfinriel. Spent around $80 on the USPS because even with the car rental it's cheaper than shipping through Canada Post. Faster and less US Customs-intensive, too.

Bellingham has a new "game store." Disappointingly, it's actually a Warhammer / Warmachine store with a bunch of Magic cards and two shelves of boardgames. So that took about five minutes to peruse. On the other hand, Mallard's is currently serving frankincense ice cream (ETA: recipe courtesy [personal profile] thanate), which may be the best ice cream I've ever had. (The pomegranate sorbet from Moorenko's is disqualified on the shaky grounds that it's a sorbet, not an ice cream.) And the dueling used bookstores remain fine places to find any number of things. One, for instance, has volumes two through four of Daniel Abraham's Long Price Quartet, which I've heard a couple of people say nice things about and which I have resisted picking up because, hello, volumes two through four are of little use to me. I did pick up a(nother) giftable copy of JMF's Growing Up Weightless, because it's one of those books (along with The Dragon Waiting, and The Last Hot Time, and Heat of Fusion if I ever saw that in the wild) that I buy on spec because surely I know someone who needs it, and because I adore the cover. (Of which there is not a satisfactory image online, because much of what I adore is only visible in the wraparound.)



Since then I have been fairly brain-dead. Not sleeping well has been part of it; not sure about the rest, if there even is anything that's "rest." I did have a lovely evening last night with a handful of people I'd mostly never met before, at a small local poly meet... thing. The jury is still out but it may be the type of thing I'm looking for.

Also, as of season 4, Battlestar Galactica has gone so far off the rails that it can no longer see the rails from where it is, and in fact retains only a dim memory that once there were rails for it to go off of. Or, to quote Douglas Adams, "I think this is getting needlessly messianic."

... and we just had five minutes of snow hail downtown. All melted now of course, but still nice to see.
jazzfish: a black-haired man with a big sword. blood stains the snow behind (Eddard Stark)
It's been a rougher and lonelier six months than I'd expected. I think if I'd known it was going to be this tough to meet people, or that the dark would hit me this hard... I would have come anyway, because for something I've wanted this much for this long I'd rather fail than not try.

And now it gets better. The dark, at least, has begun to lessen. Hibernating and simply surviving get easier. The only way out is through, and I know there is a way through, even if I can't see what it is yet.
... the one who is King says "It all seemed so simple, once,"
And the best knight in the world says "It is. We make it hard."
--John M. Ford, "Winter Solstice, Camelot Station"
Happy Sunreturn. Looks like this year it'll matter to me on more than just a metaphorical level.
jazzfish: an open bottle of ether, and George conked out (Ether George)
Charity auction of several John M. Ford books, including the alternate-Borderlands novel The Last Hot Time and both of his fantastic story+poetry collections. (Noted here primarily for [personal profile] rbandrews, because it includes From The End Of The Twentieth Century, which includes "To The Tsiolkovsky Station," JMF's essay on the train system in Growing Up Weightless.)

After All, We're All Somebody's Father: "Even understanding this vast conspiracy as well as I do, however, I still found myself astounded by the many types of Father's Day cards on offer."

Dear Photograph: the About reads "Take a picture of a picture of the past in the present." Neat.

Great Expectations, by Dickens Charles: of interest to anyone who's ever read the footnoted edition of any translated literature.

An interview with Norton Juster (author of The Phantom Tollbooth), and another. "One day I made up these three demons for [illustrator Jules Feiffer], one short and fat, one tall and thin, and the third who looked exactly like the other two, and of course you can’t draw it. It’s impossible. The way he got his revenge, there’s a picture of the Whether Man, which is me."

Buried in this piece on Aardman Studios (the Wallace & Gromit studio) is mention that their next movie will be The Pirates! In An Adventure With Scientists. "Remember my motto: 'I like ham!'" "It's a very good motto, sir."

*pant* Okay, that should be enough for now.
jazzfish: Exit, pursued by a bear (The Winter's Tale III iii)
A tale of three theatregoers: "The short version: the story [of Spider-man: Turn Off The Dark] made little sense, the music itself was often very pretty but not Broadway-ish, the lyrics were terrible, the aesthetics were spectacular but incoherent, and second act can be summed up as JULIE TAYMOR'S ID SAYS HELLO."

The As Seen On TV Hat "would fit perfectly into a dystopian future where humanity is addicted to television, oblivious to the world around them."

Know Your History: Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem.

[personal profile] rydra_wong says what I've been telling everyone about The Dragon Waiting by John M. Ford: READ THIS BOOK. No spoilers, unless you count the revelation that the book contains no actual dragons.

On Labor: "For reasons beyond me, childbirth-- in the popular American mind-- is swaddled in gossamer, gift-wrap, and icing. Beneath the pastel Hallmark cards and baby showers, behind the flowers, lies a truth encoded, still, in our wording, but given only minimal respect-- the charge of shepherding life is labor... potentially lethal work."

A '70s era Dutch anti-drugs poster.

Why Minnesota Mothers Are Doing Pretty Good: "If a Minnesota child gets a B, well, good for them! Room for improvement." The comments are not too bad, either. (Some amount of great-grandfather Carl Oscar Bergholm's Scandasotan nature seems to have been passed down through the family. I laugh at these because my only other choice is to break down in frustration.)

Friendship Guidelines, via [livejournal.com profile] salzara_tirwen. Will have to bear these in mind as I build new social circles.
jazzfish: A cartoon guy with his hands in the air saying "Woot." (Woot.)
As previously mentioned, [personal profile] rbandrews and [livejournal.com profile] diadelphous came out from Texas for the weekend. On Friday they braved the flurrying snow and went into the District to wander through the Smithsonian, accompanied by [personal profile] uilos. I joined them all for dinner at Afterwords and we browsed the bookstore and got cupcakes from Hello Cupcake. (While waiting for them I had time to read It's A Book, which was very cute and also had a monkey.)

HC was out of the day's gluten-free cupcakes, which was a disappointment since half the point of going to Dupont was to pick some up so we'd have them the next day. Oh well. The cupcakes they had were delicious and totally worth the trip.

But why, you may ask, did we need gluten-free cupcakes? )

Sunday we got up and saw our Texan visitors off, and stopped by my parents' place for my father's birthday lunch. Then we came home and collapsed for several hours.



People keep asking me if I feel any different. The only answer I've been able to come up with is "Now I have less cake."
jazzfish: an open bottle of ether, and George conked out (Ether George)
So this evening I was going to go do something New and Interesting and possibly Fun and Exciting. It would have involved attempting to be sociable around people I've never met, but I was willing to give that a try.

Then I just sort of collapsed a little before four. Hazard of running on a) 5-6 hours' sleep a night and b) the last dregs of my emotional reserves, for most of the last two weeks, I guess. I was sort of mobile by sixish but still kind of shaky, and that didn't really get any better after dinner.

I have a well-documented hatred of driving into DC, and tend to enjoy wandering around cities, so my original plan for the evening was going to involve metro and a mile walk. By this point it was really too late to metro. So I was looking at the hassle of finding parking in DC where I wouldn't get ticketed or towed, on top of the stress of being a stranger and being in a New Situation... and I stayed home.

I deeply resent my body and brain choosing now to run completely out of cope. One more day is all I asked for.

Oh well.



Earlier this week I found, on eBay, a reasonably priced Easton Press edition of Growing Up Weightless. Easton puts out very nice leatherbound SF classics and first editions. At least, I'd always assumed they were very nice. Maybe I've been spoiled by Subterranean's The Club Dumas but Weightless came today and it's... just kind of nice. Good solid cover, gilt-edged pages, decent paper, but nothing terribly special. This kind of kills any desire I may have had to shell out the money for the Easton edition of Lonesome October.

(Also, and interestingly, they didn't set their own type: they used the same plates as the Bantam trade paperback, the first non-limited edition. I wouldn't have even noticed but it's got a very distinctive font.)
jazzfish: Owly, reading (Owly)
From [livejournal.com profile] pameladean: "My partner Raphael has a Dreamwidth account." Raphael's profile notes that zie "wrote a book once, but that was in another century, and besides, it's out of print." It's one of my very favorite books, so I'm quite pleased to see zir writing more, even if it's "just" blog posts. (RSS feed: [livejournal.com profile] centuryplant_dw)

From Tor editor Beth Meacham: "Mike Ford's unfinished novel ASPECTS is awaiting the completion of some supplementary material before being scheduled for publication." I'm pretty much thrilled by this. (If you haven't read The Dragon Waiting, or Heat of Fusion, or, heck, the Occasional Works, you are Missing Out. In the best possible way, because now you get to read all those things for the first time.)

Currently rereading the Hitchhiker's "trilogy" for what may be the first time since the publication of Mostly Harmless. (I've listened to the radio shows countless times since then, and seen the movie, and I think I may have even seen the BBC series as well.) They hold up well. I'm looking forward to rereading Mostly Harmless; at the time I thought it was subpar and depressing with some occasional good bits, so I only read it the once. It'll be like having a whole new Douglas Adams book.
jazzfish: a black-haired man with a big sword. blood stains the snow behind (Eddard Stark)
In memoriam. Walked in to say hello to the presumably-sleepy beastie this afternoon before going to [livejournal.com profile] rislyn's for gaming, and she was nestled in the bottom of the cage, perfectly still.

She had a rough life to start with. I like to think I made things a little better for her: room to run and dig, a home that was mostly free from curious cats, food and water and perhaps not enough attention. I could tell she'd started to get used to me because she'd no longer bolt immediately when I opened the cage, she'd wait until my hand was fairly close.

She was adorable when she nibbled open sunflower seeds, or when she'd sit and groom herself. She seemed to like climbing on hands when we let her run around the box while her cage was being cleaned, and she'd occasionally talk to us ('tk-tk-tk-tk'). She was hard to photograph, unfortunately, mostly i've got fuzzy pictures of the already-fuzzy beastie.

I miss her.

The room is still warm
As its windows fill with snow
The wheel is at rest.

--John M. Ford
jazzfish: artist painting a bird, looking at an egg for reference (Clairvoyance)
  • Google's header for today.
  • "CNN is running a live feed from the Senate floor. Apparently, a convicted felon has seized control of a microphone and is giving a lengthy speech." --Michael D., at Balloon Juice
  • This userpic from [livejournal.com profile] smckeown:
    Every time you ask when the next book will be done, GRRM kills a Stark
jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Jazz Fish)
LOLGrues: delightful. Zarf is amazing and weird, as he often is.

Etch-A-Sketch for Windows(tm): "Rumors that Mr. Gates has poor color sense are slander, unless you expressed them in a message to Microsoft Customer Service, in which case they are libel."

New British coins, which are awesome. Also, the 50p and 20p are heptagons, which are even more awesome. (Yes, I know, they have been for ages.)

Thursday focus group: Consensus Items and Action Suggestions.
jazzfish: an evil-looking man in a purple hood (Lord Fomax)
WHEREAS, the Feast of St. Valentine has repeatedly proven offensive or inconvenient to the majority of the American People;

WHEREAS, the Feast of St. Valentine has been demonstrably debased by unseemly commercialism and rapacious greed;

WHEREAS, all attempts to celebrate the Feast of St. Valentine in the common way debase the true arts of love;

WHEREAS, the above factors in combination have continued to cause strife,discomfort and misery in the Greater Portion of the American People;

WHEREAS, the activities surrounding the Feast of St. Valentine debase and shame the American People;

AND WHEREAS, a more appropriate and honorable claim to that day exists;

NOW, THEREFORE, we decree that the celebration of the Feast of St. Valentine be hereby ABOLISHED;

AND WE FURTHER ORDER that the Fourteenth Day of February each year be rededicated to the celebration of the birth of Joshua Norton I, Emperor of the United States and Protector of Mexico, who, by the grace of God, ruled his people wisely and well for more than twenty years.

(originally by [livejournal.com profile] kfringe; if you re-post, please link back to this post.)



Tomorrow is St. Valentine’s Day,
And Alphonse has a score:
Let in the guys, that after play
Never departed more.


--John M. Ford
jazzfish: an open bottle of ether, and George conked out (Ether George)
Fragments, images. No sustained travelogue this time. Just bits and pieces of the trip. Tuesday at the Pike Place Market with piroshky and sunlight, and fishes [livejournal.com profile] nixve-cooked and eaten on Thursday. Wednesday's mad dash from person to bookstore to person. Thursday's failed expeditions. (No wind for kites, no access to NOAA for art, and no service available at the little pastry shop. On the other hand, the unexpected blackberries were only slightly past their season, and there were an awful lot of them.) A new-to-me John M. Ford (Joel Rosenberg: "An expanded version of Fugue State? You're clearing up some of the ambiguities, then?" JMF: "No; adding new ones." Having just finished it I'm almost tempted to go in search of the shorter version, but it wouldn't help; the story's ambiguous by its very nature), a Delany I've been seeking for ages, and a handful of miscellanea. Pomegranate tea, though this doesn't necessarily mean I'm skipping RenFaire this year, I'll still need to try it and see if it's any good.

And now I am home, and tired, and I don't particularly want to go to work tomorrow and stare at the skeleton of a book that I have two weeks to flesh into a semicoherent whole. So it goes.

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jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Default)
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Adventures in Mamboland

"Jazz Fish, a saxophone playing wanderer, finds himself in Mamboland at a critical phase in his life." --Howie Green, on his book Jazz Fish Zen

Yeah. That sounds about right.

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