"You with the Guardian?"

  • May. 26th, 2017 at 8:10 PM
(X-posting to [community profile] thisfinecrew.)

Here's a thought:

If you disapprove of politicians beating up journalists (or winking at other politicians' beating up journalists) and have some spare cash, one possible action would be to contribute to the Guardian -- whose journalist, Ben Jacobs, got beaten up.

There are various options for becoming a member and paying a regular subscription, but you can also make a one-off contribution.

Although they're a British newspaper, their coverage of US issues is very very strong.

They would like to note (in an e-mail sent out to members) that they recently ran pieces including GOP candidate Greg Gianforte has financial ties to US-sanctioned Russian companies and Trump diehards stay loyal in Montana's 'white man's country' – video:

In that interview, the Guardian's west coast bureau chief, Paul Lewis, challenged Gianforte over his support of Trump's executive order that threatens more than two dozen national monuments in America, including the Upper Missouri River Breaks National Monument in Montana.

Out of curiosity

  • May. 26th, 2017 at 1:08 PM
What happens if the new Republican rep for Montana is now convicted of assault?

He appears to have "declined" a further interview requested by local law enforcement (which, much like "declining" a subpoena, is one of those things I didn't know you could do).

But he's apologized (or "apologized") for having "made a mistake".

(A "mistake" that allegedly involved grabbing someone by the neck with both hands, body-slamming them to the floor, then repeatedly punching them.)

Paul Ryan (displaying all the guts and principle we have come to expect from him) took the bold stand of saying Gianforte should apologize. Other Republicans seem to feel that Ben Jacobs should apologize for having wickedly provoked Gianforte to attack him by being a liberal journalist in public.

Flash finale reaction

  • May. 25th, 2017 at 7:12 PM
That was not good, although I did appreciate that they (slight spoiler) subverted tropes re. who died.

Relatedly, I have no Flash CW icons. Anyone have links to some?

... wow

  • May. 25th, 2017 at 3:01 PM
(x-posting from [community profile] thisfinecrew)

Holy shit:

The Guardian: Republican candidate charged with assault after 'body-slamming' Guardian reporter

The day before the Montana special election (which is today).

And it was caught on audiotape and witnessed by a Fox News team also present who wrote this about (avid Trump supporter) Gianforte's alleged attack on Ben Jacobs:

Jacobs persisted with his question. Gianforte told him to talk to his press guy, Shane Scanlon.

At that point, Gianforte grabbed Jacobs by the neck with both hands and slammed him into the ground behind him. Faith, Keith and I watched in disbelief as Gianforte then began punching the reporter. As Gianforte moved on top of Jacobs, he began yelling something to the effect of, "I'm sick and tired of this!"

Jacobs scrambled to his knees and said something about his glasses being broken. He asked Faith, Keith and myself for our names. In shock, we did not answer. Jacobs then said he wanted the police called and went to leave. Gianforte looked at the three of us and repeatedly apologized. At that point, I told him and Scanlon, who was now present, that we needed a moment. The men then left.

To be clear, at no point did any of us who witnessed this assault see Jacobs show any form of physical aggression toward Gianforte, who left the area after giving statements to local sheriff's deputies.


Fox News: Key Montana newspapers pull Gianforte endorsement after incident

Here's [personal profile] colorblue's post on the Montana election:

Action: Montana Special Election

If you are a US citizen, you can still donate to the last-minute get-out-the-vote effort for Gianforte's opponent, Rob Quist, and he currently has 5X matching:

ActBlue page for Rob Quist (thanks to [personal profile] loligo)

update on my liiiiiife

  • May. 24th, 2017 at 10:10 AM
I'm doing pretty well. The medications I'm on have been good. I'm finally scheduled to see someone about my back.

DJ still isn't talking to me, but he graduated on Sunday. I was able to watch via live feed. He's signed up to go into the Air Force for 6 years. They want him for NASA or intelligence, they told him. I don't know if we can trust them, but I guess we'll see.

I miss him a lot.

My relationship with Zachary is really good though. We talk all the time, text and Facetime, and I try to support him no matter what his current passion is. It was drawing for awhile, which I could really get behind, but now he seems to be leaning more toward... gardening? I don't even know.

Meg was falling down a lot until we got to the doctor and he figured out it was vertigo from allergies. We got her on a new antihistamine and she's stopped falling.

As for me, other than the YAY MEDS working, I've been writing a lot. Unfortunately, everything I write is super long so I'm not actually posting much.

I probably left a lot out, so if you have a question just ask. I'd love some interaction.

Wow

  • May. 24th, 2017 at 9:06 AM
I have been so sluggish and depressed this morning, it's pretty intense. Got better when I decided to suggest at our June staff meeting that when our hours change in July - to be open not as late on Friday night and earlier on Saturday, which will mean both of us need to work five days - instead of us switching off working Mondays (when we're closed) and Saturdays, why doesn't she just work Mon-Fri and I'll work Tues-Sat, except when we need to trade for Reasons? Because switching would mean regular one-day weekends, and thinking about that was seriously making me want to cry. Because I have no social life and no family, working on Saturdays isn't the hardship for me that it is for her, so why not just put me there.

As you can see, last night I did sew again, inserting a long and somewhat wavy triangle into the sleeve seam. (I actually had to piece the triangle in one as well ಠ_ಠ) It's still a little tight at the end of the seam, so I might cut a tiny bit into the triangle and hem that along with the rest of the opening. Tonight: hemming the opening, making piped cuffs, sewing them to the sleeve along with the trim pieces. Tomorrow night: setting the sleeve into the armscye. Friday night: Putting lining on the neckline bands, adding hooks and eyes, trying on and having a meltdown when it won't fit (I assume).

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Who said I was dead, puppy?

  • May. 23rd, 2017 at 10:04 PM
The most recent episode of American Gods, 1.04 - reactions )

I really, really liked that. I really did!

Another thing I liked: a meme from [personal profile] musesfool: Share the final line of five of your fics — your favorites, or the most recent ones. I'll go with most recent, but two come from drabble collections, so I just sort of scrolled until I found one I liked from those:
I’ll say it again until she hears me, until her breath catches, like the click of a dashboard dial. (Beekeeping for City Girls Without Roofs, Neko Case, "Prison Girls")

When Peggy felt herself open up simply for the joy of it, for her own sake, without flinching, her own excitement at the thought of a long life was a sudden downpour that she passed through and shivered in, after. (Drabble, Peggy, for the first time, after the war, MCU)

BE GENTLE WITH ME, Sebastian's hindbrain screams. (Meeting Redford, Part II, MCU RPF)

The passerby shook her head. Beneath the skin of her cheek, something shimmered, something gray and sick. The old witch drew in a breath, but it probably wasn’t anything. Nothing like that should ever happen here. (Wind Gets In (The Red Blood to the Bruise Remix), Little Red Riding Hood)

"You feel things so deeply, and it makes you good, not weak." She kissed his temple once, in the dark. "Someone's got to tell you that." (Why Talk About Love, MCU, Peggy/Bucky)
Note to self: Do not get so predictably focused on breath, even if you're not releasing one you didn't know you were holding.

Today got to quite a late start, but I got myself to a coffee shop I actually like and can work in and I put together a resume I'm pleased with, and if I can get my cover letter together tomorrow (and hear back from folks I list as references), I will be in very good shape.

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KIDS.

  • May. 23rd, 2017 at 10:35 AM
You may have seen me yelling happily about it on Twitter last night, but I watched Captain America: Civil War again last night for the first time in about a year. There are a lot of things I miss about feeling like I was in fandom, but something I don't miss, particularly about Tumblr, is the endless avalanche of people ripping apart and shitting over every single frame of that movie because it didn't conform to the (amazing!) fanon they'd spent the past two years building. Turns out that removed from that context, it's definitely as fantastic as I remembered from my first time seeing it. (And way more pleasant than my second, which involved a seat-kicker and multiple assholes checking their phones in the audience throughout.) Given distance, I didn't even feel that there was too much Tony, which I felt strongly before, and not enough Bucky. Do I wish it had been a simpler, more intimate film? Yeah, but it was always going to be an overburdened ensemble. Ant-Man is a goddamn joy, Spider-Man is a delight, Sharon Carter is a made-of-competence Maria+Natasha BAMF, Clint Barton finally gets to be recognizably Clint Barton, T'Challa is [INDECIPHERABLE SCREAMING ABOUT HOW AMAZING HE IS] and I still respect the hell out of Bucky's choice at the end.

Not only that, but Sebastian Stan is posting dopey Winter Soldier gym-training selfies again, including with Scarlett Johansson, so you can bet I'm feeling a whole lot of stuff, including Winter Widow stuff, what a good ship. ("You could at least recognize me!" is. Doing things in my head, quite a lot.)

The downside of two nights in a row of amped-up fandom feels (Sunday night was a Winter Soldier rewatch, that movie is still so good!!!!) is that I am not able to wake up on time, not even remotely. Therapy last night was, ironically, "Don't get paralyzed by the things you can't control; focus on what you can do." So I'm waiting to hear back on some pitches I'm excited about and putting together job applications in the meantime. I really need money and good health insurance, not least because while clearing out my 1,000+ OneTab links (I'm now down to 200!), I remembered that LindyBop is a thing, and now I have to contend with cute+affordable shit like this dungaree swing skirt (in nutmeg, teal and navy, oh shoot!!) and this cute-as-hell tea dress with puffins on it.

I have one eggplant left over from this rousing success, so tonight I'm trying charred eggplant and walnut pesto pasta salad, assuming my hand cooperates. Having to keep my bestitched hand away from getting wet or dirty is really messing with my ability to, like, clean up my kitchen, which is frustrating. (I know, I know, get some gloves. I'll get there!) I can get the stitches out on Friday, which I'm really looking forward to. The eventual bill for the initial hospital visit, with my shitty insurance and its 50% ER visit co-pay, less so.

So, okay! Late start, but starting nonetheless. Happy Tuesday, gang. ♥

Here is a delightful thing

  • May. 23rd, 2017 at 9:38 AM
Via [tumblr.com profile] violent-darts:

AV Club: Meme becomes reality as Netflix orders Lupita Nyong’o and Rihanna’s con artist movie

Because we need it this morning.

Fuck terrorism, fuck Katie Hopkins and her vile cohorts, pre-emptively fuck Trump because presumably he's going to make some sort of statement about Manchester at some point and it's going to be awful (or at best the kind of vacuous blandness that means they've managed to make him stick to a script for a few moments), go awesome black women and making movies happen through the power of Twitter and delight.

May all the surviving kids at the concert be safe and reunited with their families soon and participating in the proud British tradition of recounting acts of terrorism in terms of the epic journeys that had to be taken because public transport was shut down (a la 7/7 -- Americans: "We weep for you!" British people: "I had to walk for FIVE HOURS").

ETA: Oh fuck they let him write at least part of it. Yes, of course Buttercup thinks the worst thing you can call someone is a "loser". Because winning is all that counts, and Buttercup is the winningest winner ever. Losing means you're wrong because winning is right.

Box o books cont'd

  • May. 22nd, 2017 at 10:50 PM
Last call for cheap books, kind of an eclectic lot, Shakespeare and Beatles and random SFF anthologies. Most of these are pretty well used, cover wear, etc. Let me know your zip code and I'll calculate media rate shipping from that and book weight.

Let me know before Friday night if you want any of these, because on Saturday they're going to Good Will.

For the Shakespeare, I am including publisher/edition for those who care; most of them are perfectly readable modern editions but I feel I should note that the "new hudson" editions were printed circa 1910 and while they have the same kinds of notes I tend to expect, they are visibly old. Merrills is 1910 as well, and Arden is good gracious, 1898.

Hardcover - $2
Skywalking: the life and films of George Lucas by Dale Pollock (1983, so no current or prequels)
Aliens from Analog (anthology, contents)
Reel Future (anthology, contents)
Pendragon Chronicles (anthology, contents)
Hal Leonard Guitar Method, books 1-3 (this is actually comb bound not hardcover, but it also includes CDs, so I'm tossing it in this list for pricing.)
America, the book, from the Daily Show with Jon Stewart
I Me Mine by George Harrison
Paul McCartney: Many Years From Now by Barry Miles
Blackbird: The Life and Times of Paul McCartney by Geoffrey Giuliano
McCartney: The Definitive Biography by Chris Salewicz
The Baby Train and Other Lusty Urban Legends by Jan Harold Brunvand

Trade Paperback (or larger) - $1.50
Save the cat! The Last Book on Screenwriting you'll ever need by Blake Snyder
How to Write for Television by Madeline DiMaggio
Writing Scripts Hollywood Will Love by Katherine Atwell Herbert
Science Fiction: a historical anthology (contents)
Henry the Fourth, Part I, Shakespeare, Norton
King Lear, Shakespeare, Kittredge
Hamlet, Shakespeare, St Martin's Case Studies in Contemporary Criticism
Classical Mythology by Mark Morford and Robert Lenardon
Completely MAD: A History of the Comic Book and Magazine
MAD about the Eighties: the best of the decade
MAD about the Seventies: the best of the decade
MAD about the Sixties: the best of the decade
MAD about the Movies
The Birth of the Beatles by Sam Leach
Brothel: Mustang Ranch and its Women by Alexa Albert
Dante, the Divine Comedy, Inferno, Italian, English translation by John Sinclair
Star Trek: Q's Guide to the Continuum
Cowboy Slang by Edgar R. "Frosty" Potter
All I really need to know I learned from watching Star Trek by Dave marinaccio
Quotable Star Trek by Jill Sherwin

Paperbacks - $1
Teach Yourself Film Studies by Warren Buckland
Twelfth Night, Shakespeare, signet
Othello, Shakespeare, folger
Tempest, Shakespeare, new hudson
Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare, folger
Anthony and Cleopatra, Shakespeare, Kittredge
As You Like It, Shakespeare, new hudson
Merchant of Venice, Shakespeare, Arden
Julius Caesar, Shakespeare, Merrill's
Macbeth, Shakespeare, folger
Midsummer night's dream, Shakespeare, folger
Much Ado About Nothing, Shakespeare, folger
Taming of the Shrew, Shakespeare, bantam
Titus Andronicus, Shakespeare, signet
Second Shepherd's play
The Fantastic Adventures of Robin Hood (anthology, contents)
Isaac Asimov's Magical Worlds of Fantasy: Curses (anthology, contents)
Isaac Asimov's Magical Worlds of Fantasy: Ghosts (anthology, contents)
50 Short Science Fiction Tales (anthology, and with nothing so tidy as a table of contents, here's the list of reprint permissions)
UFOs: A Manual for the Millennium by Phil Cousineau
Anne Frank's Tales From the Secret Annex
Dutchman and the Slave: Two Plays by LeRoi Jones
House of Desires in a new translation by Catherine Boyle
The Skin of Our Teeth by Thornton Wilder
Our Town by Thornton Wilder
Everyman and Medieval Miracle Plays
Life is a Dream, Calderon
Beowulf, trans Burton Raffel
I Owe Russian $1200 by Bob Hope (resisting urge to make political joke here)
Strange and Amazing Facts About Star Trek by Daniel Cohen
Separated at Birth? (Meme of a bygone era, this is a collection of photographs of celebrities that look like other celebrities)

:/

  • May. 22nd, 2017 at 7:24 PM
I really meant to actually sew today, but it just didn't seem to happen. I did trim down the armscyes enough to get my arms through, woo, which means I'm at the worst point for assessing fit and appearance - the no-sleeves-and-no-fastenings stage. Is it like this for other people? Whenever I hit this part in any sewing project, it always looks like utter crap and I want to completely scrap the whole thing because it seems like it will never work. But I figure that if I solidly sew every evening, I should be able to finish in just a couple of days - which means that if it really doesn't work, I have time to get Dad to ship me the 1860s dress I left down in East Greenbush ... or I guess I could just wear my Cranford dress, tbh. While it has its own issues, being too tight is not one of them.

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Newly local characters

  • May. 22nd, 2017 at 3:13 PM
Once I move at the beginning of June, there will be a new local set of people.


Me: y'all know me. Lunatic, infovore. Gender: no thank you. Pronoun set: plural-they.

Partner: a witty, kind geekfolk, fascinated by books and shows and links and sports and hardware and eking every last ounce of usefulness out of old gear. I have known them for about 10 years at this point. Infovore. Gender: has a lot of oppressive constructs which should be BURNED THE FUCK DOWN while not endangering the vulnerable folks who depend on some of its supportive ones. Pronoun set: anonymous-they.

Metamour: has been seeing my partner since February-ish. Met them over a game of CAH; knew they had to be friends when they had pretty much the same answer. Witty, beautiful. Likes baking. Gender: woman. Pronoun set: she/her.

Tay-Tay: my younger (biological) sister, and soon to be my roommate. I say she is my "baby" sister but she's actually a year older than my partner. Violinist and general ball of energy. Short and tiny; I can kind of lift her in one arm so she can be on eye level with my partner. Gender: probably woman-ish and she likes kicking over gender norms and dancing on top. Pronoun set: she/her.

The Kitten: a small, loud, grey indoor lap cat who loves my partner and will punch people who try to pet her without her permission. Previous owners declawed her. She is food-insecure, and cannot be left to free-feed. She's antisocial to other cats. She does not like Master Jerkface very much at all. She is most often found perched on the back of my partner's desk chair and getting hair on their jacket, on my partner's lap with her tail in their face demanding to be petted, or on top of them when they're asleep.

Master Jerkface (and other equally unflattering nicknames): the abusive ex of my beloved partner. I hope to not meet them. Gender: they have one. Pronoun set: as used here, anonymous-they.

The Man-Child: Tay's boyfriend, who I didn't hear about in the context of a Relationship until September 2016, literally as I was coming back from the Oakland radiation oncology department. Musician, outdoorsy hiker type. A few decades too old for man-childishness to be excused. Gender: man, probably. Pronoun set: he/him.


Team Partner: a bunch of people who came together to help my partner in their hour of need. They include:

an old internet friend of mine who reads the Vorkosigan books
their wife
a friend of theirs

The first hosts: one of my partner's former co-workers who went into tech and her husband

The second hosts: another co-worker-ish person and her husband


Assorted now-local friends of mine include:

Mr. Zune: a former co-worker from Virtual Hammer who is now at the SEA-TAC outpost as his career was portable
Mr. Zune's Girlfriend: got a dream job in the Seattle area

[livejournal.com profile] tygerr: an old friend and Listee
[livejournal.com profile] tygerr's wife: an excellent and fun geek lady

Carnelian: a friend of mine from the late 90s; we had various different paths in life but now we're talking again and comparing notes.
Terezi: Carnelian's daughter, who infamously needed two stacked baby gates to keep her contained as a toddler. Now a proud teenage tumblr bb. (I haven't seen her in Many Years, but I'm likely to run into her more often now.)

Various #dw, #dw_kvetch, and #lj_s folk!!!
No, a literal one, not (just) metaphorical. I had to Google to be sure. Reality is getting way too on-the-nose lately.

Also: TPM: Trump Denies He Said ‘Israel’ When He Shared Israeli Intelligence With Russia

That's right: while in Israel, Buttercup spontaneously confirmed for the press that Israel was the source of the uber-classified intel he shared with the Russians without the Israelis' permission, but he thinks it's all fine because he didn't say the word "Israel" while in the room with the Russians (just, you know, now, on TV, in front of the entire world, in case the Russians had any remaining doubt about where the intel came from), so that's okay.

You learn something new...

  • May. 21st, 2017 at 3:55 PM
I've been reading a marvellous history book, "Meetings with Remarkable Manuscripts" by Christopher de Hamel.

The author takes us on a tour of the libraries of the world to visit 12 of the most famous, beautiful and interesting medieval manuscripts. He describes the history, previous owners and adventures of the various volumes but also provides verbal descriptions as well as plenty of pictures, talking about the things that you can see only by looking at the original. He's obviously an expert, with a genuine love for his work that comes over - an enjoyable person to spend time with. It's a hefty volume, but I highly recommend it.

One thing I had no idea of was the connection with 1970s aftershave adverts - if you're as old as me, you'll probably remember this Old Spice ad. :-)



I knew the music was Carmina Burana, but I had no idea it was based on an early 13th century manuscript of the same name - a large collection of songs in Latin and German, that inspired Carl Orff, the composer of the music I knew... Unlike most of the manuscripts, which were copies of existing texts, this was almost certainly the original compilation of the songs, recorded from ones sung across southern Europe for over a century.

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Wow. Did you see that?

  • May. 21st, 2017 at 9:48 AM
Who is watching Underground and Shots Fired? It can't be just me. But if you are not watching them, you are missing many things, but mostly you are missing Aisha Hinds blow all the competition out of the water. Her Pastor Janae James is not to be missed, she's riviting every minute she is on screen. But Underground is where she is beyond amazing as Harriet Tubman. (Okay, okay huge props to the writers who created the words for Hinds to speak.)

I've falled behind on my TV viewing so yesterday was the first time I saw Underground s2e6 Minty. It was pretty much an episode long monologue delivered by Tubman in the form of a secret lecture for abolitionists. If anything else happened, I didn't register it at all. Hinds deserves all the awards for this performance.

Yesterday I got out for breakfast with oldest friend R. and hung out with her and her partner after before we hit the greenhouse. So many people! I managed to restrain myself to two hanging baskets of geraniums (red and white for Canada's 150th), and grass seed for the front lawn which is in terrible shape this year. However, R. needed to redo a bed she had pulled out several bushes and small evergreens, so I had a lot of fun encouraging her to spend money. Whee! It's so much less painful on the bank account that way.

A bit of work today and then tonight and tomorrow hanging out with my sister for the Victoria day blowout. Which will mostly involve watching more Smallville ('cos it's raining cats and dogs!), hearing about her event of yesterday and drinking rum and coke.

Happy long weekend (if you are having one of course). Happy Sunday if not!

Goodbye, Virtual Hammer.

  • May. 20th, 2017 at 5:38 PM
Friday was more boxes. Putting olives and pineapple and a few other things in a sturdy box half-filled it, but it was already heavy enough. I made up the rest of the space with dry noodle soup cups: not easily crushed, but hella light.

It was beer bash day at Virtual Hammer, and my last one. My former manager's last day had been the week before (onward and upward). I was skeptical of the food choices, as the theme was "pizza party", and I was aware of what the "catering pizza" was like.

By 2pm, when the maintenance guy hadn't shown up for the pre-departure inspection, I called the office. I didn't want to miss beer bash. He came through at 2:45. No major issues, and maybe X place would be good for the moving pod, but it was a hard problem. (In this case, "major issues" is holes in walls, destroyed appliances, etc. I am sure there will be "minor issues".)

I headed for beer bash, slightly melancholy. (My partner urged me to try for not too much sadness.) I chatted with Nora, of course. I walked briskly up the path, but paused at the duck pond to take a few last pictures.

The duck pond at Virtual Hammer, glowing in the sunlight (with a certain amount of algae bloom).

Purple called just about then, as he was about a hundred meters behind me and wanted to catch up. He had a new-ish teammate with him, someone of a delightfully compatible sense of humor.

We grabbed some pizza (fortunately, there was sufficient pepperoni pizza, as the veggie pizza was laced with bell pepper), and contemplated the desserts.

1) Streusel pizza, an uninspiring-looking cinnamon-sugar crumb on something flat and pale.
2) Brownie pizza, with toasted mini marshmallows and peanut butter cups.
3) Popcorn with some red coating on it; this would prove to be mostly spicy.
4) Cookie pizza, chocolate chip with frosting, coconut shreds, and walnuts on top.

#1 looked like a waste of carbohydrate. #3 looked like not-dessert (and upon tasting, was indeed not-dessert).
I texted my partner with the descriptions of #2 and #4, and got back some incredulous punctuation. I loathe peanut butter, and have an oral hypersensitivity reaction to walnuts. (It burns and the lining of my mouth peels off. It's great.) My partner has complementary reactions: oral hypersensitivity to peanuts, and loathes walnuts.

Purple and his teammate and I had a lovely time in one of the tucked-away back tables. There was a lovely view out the windows. We talked about squirrels (Purple's noticed that modern squirrels know how to freeze and duck for cars), bees (Purple's childhood home had a prodigious amount of comb removed from a wall), the nature of "Netflix and Chill", and other such things.

Eventually, Ms. Antisocialest Butterfly called, and we figured out dinner. I spotted the cute receptionist across the upper quad, and said goodbye. We wandered back down to the lower quad, and Purple wrapped up. I dropped some spare buttons from the 2015 department conference, because I didn't really need that many as keepsakes, and someone at work might think they were cool.

We headed off for dinner. Goodbye, campus in the hills. You were beautiful, and I met so many lovely people there. Perhaps I'll visit again someday.

Ms. Antisocialest Butterfly had been delayed in leaving for dinner, because as she was heading out, there was a machine overheating, so she'd had to spray the fans with compressed air and such. I was careful to avoid "blowing" jokes at first. The restaurant had the air conditioning cranked up high, which had likely been appropriate in the heat of the day, but was less and less appropriate as the air cooled. I put on my jacket. Purple ran out to his car to grab his button-down shirt.

The on-table tablet thing behaved itself this time, by which I mean Ms. Antisocialest Butterfly was able to look at the drinks menu and pick out something, and then we were able to aim it away from us without it blinking. I got a sip of Purple's drink, which was just about the right amount. (Two would have been an okay amount too, but it was a little sour for me.)

Ms. Antisocialest Butterfly has picked up a new online game, where she is now known as "Finger." Most of the obvious jokes were less made than they were implied. She observed that it's very important to not (as someone had) leave the punctuation out of the greeting "Finger, my friend!" What happened was that she'd joined the game and picked a nickname; some dick had immediately taken offense to her basic existence. She'd argued that this was the internet, perhaps she didn't exist at all! Perhaps she was just a disembodied finger, typing. And thus her new name.

Purple walked me to my car. We chatted about this and that, and the move. I'll be fine. I tend to pre-react, rather than post-react. (Purple post-reacts.) My partner and I have good communications. I'll be sad to leave California, but not heartbroken like I was about leaving Darkside.

We set the date and time for our last dinner: Tuesday night, in the hole-in-the-wall Mediterranean place where they treat us like family. I'll want to say goodbye there, too.

The language of apology

  • May. 20th, 2017 at 4:10 PM
For reasons that don't need exploring at this juncture, I started contemplating the components that make up an effective apology to me. There are the "five apology languages", which are siblings of the "five love languages", or something. That's interesting, but it isn't quite what I'm looking for.

What am I looking for?

a) Acknowledgment of the effect, and regret. (Regret is one of the apology languages.) Something happened and I was hurt; in an intimate and trustworthy relationship, I want them to know how I was hurt, and why it was hurtful. (Late to an event, hurt feelings, stubbed toe, irritated, etc.) Since they need to care for my well-being, I feel that it's appropriate that they regret my well-being was affected.
(In an untrustworthy relationship, giving them more information on how they have hurt me just gives them ammunition to hurt me further. If you find in your life that there are people where you don't want to let them know that you are hurt or how, contemplate your options for reducing those people's access to you.)

b) Root-cause analysis. What are the factors that led to this happening? Some are the responsibility of the person. (Accepting responsibility is one of the apology languages.) Sometimes there are factors that are nobody's responsibility, or are the responsibility of entities who are in no position to have things changed as a result of the incident. (A terrible day at the DMV is not likely to be solved by anyone saying "Hey, this was terrible.")

c) Making restitution, if appropriate. (Making restitution is one of the apology languages.) A date can often be rescheduled. Doing something nice and out of the ordinary is a mood-lifter. Fixing or replacing the broken thing. Sometimes there isn't really anything that can be done to make it better, and that probably should be acknowledged.

d) Failure prevention. (In the listed apology languages, "genuinely repenting" seems to fit this the closest.) With root-cause analysis and knowledge of the effects, we can use those to plan to avoid circumstances where this comes up again, and make a plan for mitigating the effects if it does come up again.


In my present primary relationship, my partner always genuinely regrets the hurt. They don't always understand why it was hurtful, so that portion often involves a lot of discussion. (And I can contribute to things going better by being more flexible in when and how that discussion happens.) The root cause often involves things that have grown out of traumatic experiences and situations in our past, which is ... fun. Restitution hasn't been a huge factor.

Root cause analysis and failure prevention tend to slide together, even though I have them listed as separate steps. It's at the failure prevention step where, like magic, I start calming down and feeling incredibly secure and loved. Since some of the factors involve trauma, the failure prevention often involves the slow process of healing (with and without the assistance of professionals), and my understanding and forgiveness of those things.

We're learning how to fight well and safely, and I love them so much.

Popcorn for everybody!

  • May. 20th, 2017 at 9:43 AM
The Guardian: Officials identify White House 'person of interest' in Trump-Russia investigation

The Washington Post reported that investigators have identified a current White House official as a significant person of interest, according to people familiar with the matter. The individual is described as someone who is “close to the president”. (yes, some of us have used up our free articles at the WaPo again)

(The Guardian are also reading Buttercup's claim that he "speaks for himself" in his most recent denials of collusion with Russia as suggesting that he may be preparing to throw others in his staff under the bus. Which, one presumes, those others may be suspecting too.)

Also!

NYT: Trump Told Russians That Firing ‘Nut Job’ Comey Eased Pressure From Investigation

“I just fired the head of the F.B.I. He was crazy, a real nut job,” Mr. Trump said, according to the document, which was read to The New York Times by an American official. “I faced great pressure because of Russia. That’s taken off.”

Mr. Trump added, “I’m not under investigation.”


Also!

Politico: Trump meets with lawyers at the White House

Money quote:

Some aides have begun reaching out to lawyers to see if they need counsel, according to one attorney who has spoken to several of them. This lawyer declined to identify the aides because he said at least two may end up being retained by his firm.

Via John Dean, who has deja vu.

Meanwhile! Madison is grappling with the fact that not every issue can be settled by committee

Reuters: Exclusive: Trump campaign had at least 18 undisclosed contacts with Russians

In January, the Trump White House initially denied any contacts with Russian officials during the 2016 campaign. The White House and advisers to the campaign have since confirmed four meetings between Kislyak and Trump advisers during that time.

(I'm still not clear if those four are included in the 18 under discussion, or in addition to.)

Meanwhile!

Talking Points Memo: Big Trouble

A round-up of multiple links including those related to Flynn's being an unregistered foreign agent for Turkey, including the fact that he blocked a military operation against ISIS that Turkey didn't want, and that according to the NYT:

on January 4th, Flynn notified Trump Transition lawyer and now White House Counsel Donald McGahn that he was being investigated for his undeclared lobbying work on behalf of Turkey.

The article puts the pieces together and makes a very strong case that Pence can't have not known about this:

In this case, Pence was saying in March that he was only just learning about Flynn’s work for Turkey. But we now learn that Flynn had notified McGahn he was being investigated by the DOJ for that work at the beginning of January.

Well, that’s McGahn, not Pence.

But remember, Pence ran the Transition!

Maybe for some reason McGahn somehow didn’t tell Pence. But that’s very, very hard to figure since Flynn was in line for one of the most consequential positions in any presidency and McGahn had just been notified of a fact that under most circumstances would be disqualifying. If Pence lied about this part of the Flynn saga, the idea that he innocently passed on Flynn’s lies about the Kislyak conversation instantly looks much less credible.


In other words, Pence is up to his eyeballs in all of this too.

Slate tries to cope:

Everything Feels Like It Happened Forever Ago
but please spam your social medias for those who might not -- especially young people, many of whom aren't registered, owing to the shift to individual registration:

https://www.gov.uk/register-to-vote

You have to be registered by the 22nd May to vote in the election on the 8th June.
I don't know how to live my life now that I know about Ample Hills Creamery's ice cream-churning bicycle, which is available for parties. (Thanks for the tip-off, Village Voice; for the record, I am definitely an ice cream maximalist.)

Other food stuffs: As soon as I get my hands on some harissa, I am trying this good-looking skillet recipe. Getting some harissa tomorrow might be an adventure for a bit, since it's the Brooklyn Half. I'm pleased not to be running -- the first time was amazing, but honestly the second year was... boring? A bit? Like, I'd done it already, let's try another route, at least.

Another food thing, this time an update on a bread recipe via [personal profile] tassosss -- I finally baked it today, after the dough lived in my fridge for most of this week. The flavor is definitely much better than the other types I've tried! This recipe makes only a small loaf, so I'd be interested in doubling the ingredients with some whole wheat or spelt (I went with all-purpose white flour for convenience, but my best results of had at least some bread flour in them). This recipe also came out the prettiest of all my attempts, even though the loaf was small: here's fresh out, here's the interior. I suspect I underbaked juuuuuust a little bit, but not enough to put me off. I just don't think six days is really worth it in terms of the bread-making experience, so I may have to actually give baking with starter a go. (Thing is, I'm pretty sure I enjoy making the bread more than eating it, in general! I mean, I like it -- but my uses for bread are pretty limited? But making it is SO SATISFYING. A bitter internal conflict I'll have to resolve.)

Who else is watching American Gods around here? I don't have any specific thoughts up through 1.03, but I am overwhelmed by how pungently Gaiman-y it all is. Even the credits are so, so heavy on Dave McKean's influence, and I do think there's something very Neverwhere-the-show about AG, despite its production value. I don't know, it's so strange to have spent your teenage and college years utterly worshiping and adoring an author and his work, and to feel so generally over his shtick when you're older, since he just seems not to have grown or changed his tune. Gaiman is so outrageously formative for me, and yet I keep making notes about things not to do in my own writing. This doesn't mean I'm not enjoying the hell out of AG (I can't wait for Mr. Nancy to come back, holy shit!), and I wonder what someone with no previous experience of the author and his work would feel about this series, but. Eh. Weird Friday night melancholy about reading authors for the first time and still being in love.

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MICHAEL: One evening, a patient was brought into my clinic in the middle of the night. He was tortured so badly I couldn’t believe he was still breathing. A man was with him. It was the man on your radio. I’ll never forget the voice. He put a gun to my head and explained to me that my patient had robbed him and that he wanted me to save him so the pain would last longer. I did what I could. He said to come here for my money — my blood money. There’s a place between life and death. Amazing how long a man can linger there.
PRESCOTT: That’s enough, all right? Okay. Bring everything upstairs. We’re getting out of here. Tony? Tony, can you hear me?
THUG: What the hell is going on?
MICHAEL: I know this guy. He’ll have people outside the bank, in your truck,and on your boat. You have no idea who you’re dealing with.
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