conuly: (Default)

I wanted earlier to say that this cold is wiping me out, and I also wanted to say that it's kicking my butt, two phrases which are semantically similar. What came out is "This cold is wiping my butt", which isn't. ("This cold is kicking me out" would have been equally puzzling, but less funny.)


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conuly: (Default)
[personal profile] flamingsword asked me if I remembered posting a certain link, and I do, but I haven't tracked it down either. It was a discussion here on DW about how you could make Buttercup in The Princess Bride a more interesting character, with more agency and intelligence than a sack of potatoes* by turning her into a poet.

* This is mean. To potatoes. They might roll down a hill after somebody, but they hardly ever spontaneously dive overboard into eel-infested waters. I don't know what this says about their agency, but I don't wish to insult their intelligence.
conuly: (Default)
so I'm going to post unrelated links like that didn't just happen.

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conuly: (Default)
Can you just click a number in the poll? Just pick the number that indicates how many people have already voted. You don't have to tell me you voted or who you are, I just want to see if there's any rhyme or reason at all to how the numbers sort after the fact.

This poll is anonymous.
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 108

How many participants did this poll have BEFORE you voted? Only answer this one if the number is under 20

View Answers
Mean: 9.67 Median: 10 Std. Dev 5.75
01 (4.8%)
11 (4.8%)
21 (4.8%)
31 (4.8%)
41 (4.8%)
51 (4.8%)
61 (4.8%)
71 (4.8%)
81 (4.8%)
91 (4.8%)
102 (9.5%)
111 (4.8%)
120 (0.0%)
131 (4.8%)
142 (9.5%)
151 (4.8%)
161 (4.8%)
170 (0.0%)
182 (9.5%)
191 (4.8%)
200 (0.0%)

Okay, same deal, but this time it is between 21 and 41....

View Answers
Mean: 31.30 Median: 31 Std. Dev 6.14
211 (5.0%)
221 (5.0%)
231 (5.0%)
241 (5.0%)
250 (0.0%)
261 (5.0%)
271 (5.0%)
282 (10.0%)
290 (0.0%)
301 (5.0%)
312 (10.0%)
320 (0.0%)
331 (5.0%)
340 (0.0%)
352 (10.0%)
360 (0.0%)
372 (10.0%)
381 (5.0%)
391 (5.0%)
401 (5.0%)
411 (5.0%)

For everybody else, there is a ticky box

View Answers

77 (100.0%)


Apr. 19th, 2019 04:04 am
conuly: (Default)
On a whim, I took a glance at the answers to my anonymous poll. And this is what it says:

User #6 -- Yes
User #7 -- No
User #4 -- No
User #5 -- This is not something that happens to me because reasons
User #3 -- No
User #9 -- This is not something that happens to me because reasons
User #1 -- No
User #8 -- No
User #2 -- Yes

It's neither grouped by answer, nor sorted in numerical order. What is even up with this?

Edit: Also, I must be the last person to vote in that poll immediately prior to clicking "view answers", and yet I am certainly not User #9.
conuly: (Default)
Poll #21801 Shark week in my pants!
This poll is anonymous.
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 98

Got your period?

View Answers

17 (17.3%)

37 (37.8%)

This is not something that happens to me because reasons
44 (44.9%)

In honor of, uh, painting the town red, take this list of international period euphemisms. I have no idea if any of these are actually used widely, but that's not the point of listicles, is it? Or take this one instead.


Links )
conuly: (Default)
It's a pity she's no longer writing, but it's still amazing that she's still around! I read her memoir, Girl From Yamhill, once. Her earliest memory, as recounted there, is of the end of the First World War. (Not that she understood what was going on, but still.) Can you believe it!?

And an interesting anecdote, appropriate nowadays in this age of vaccine refusal and "chickenpox parties" - as a young child she was sent upstairs to play with a neighbor because that neighbor had chickenpox and was quarantined and lonely, but young Beverley had already had chickenpox. Unfortunately, it turned out the neighbor had smallpox instead, and so she got sick. But survived! Despite what anti-vaxxers tell us about the past, and about the relative seriousness of childhood illness, there was no talk of sending children to this neighbor's house specifically to expose them to disease that they might otherwise have avoided. The poor child was quarantined even when they thought it was "only" chickenpox.
conuly: (Default)
On the down side, this is making me see the deficiencies in my spice cabinet, not to mention my beans-and-grains section of the pantry. (As I say this, my sister is rolling her eyes in disbelief, but I'm nearly out of pink peppercorns, folks, I have no asafetida, and I only have one type of lentils. The situation is dire.)

...also, I urgently need an ice cream maker.
conuly: (Default)
Used it to make beans, they cooked fast and soft and not gritty, so yay.

Buuuut then I wanted to use it for a rice cooker, and the suggested proportion for brown rice was 1:1. I'm used to cooking brown rice (mixed with quinoa) on a 1:2 grain:liquid ratio... and I noticed that their proportion for white rice was also 1:1. Is this a typo, or is that really what you're supposed to use for rice cooking, equal parts rice and water, even if it's brown? (The rice, I mean. Don't cook with brown water.)
conuly: (Default)
(or your own cat, specifically) recognize the names the humans give to them. Many people have opined on the topic of animals that know their names, but don't come when called.

Rarely is the question asked: Do you recognize the name your cat has given to you? And if you recognize it, but sometimes ignore it, should you feel bad?


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conuly: (Default)
Had the hardest time getting into it, but I think that was residual Goblin Emperor feels. I'm gonna read it again straight through.

Also read A Crack in the Sea, which was part of my (endless) backlog. Oddly enough, given the fact that the author switches POV and setting like normal people change their socks, the story was pretty straight-foward, even by MG standards. Also, a huge part of the story has to do with the Zong Massacre, and do not click that link if you want to retain any faith in humanity. As the author's note puts it, in fantasy you can make it so that some of those unhappy people survived and were able to make new lives for themselves, but in real life that just didn't happen. Even the survivors weren't that lucky. So if you're planning on handing this book to a preteen, do your homework first - skim the book and make sure your kid can handle that backstory.


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conuly: (Default)
Mostly this is because we needed something to study so I can get a few months of writing work with her before she hies off to high school, and she wasn't interested in anything conventional.

Not that she's terribly interested in movies, but if I remember I can make popcorn.

Thus far we've watched Sweeney Todd, Billy Elliot, The Sound of Music, and (tonight) West Side Story. At her behest I think we're going to end up with Black Panther next week. She strongly didn't like West Side Story....

Any other suggestions?
conuly: (Default)
If you're going to include fantasy foreign words in your work, please try to remember that there are other ways to mark a plural besides simple suffixes.

For example - and this is just off the top of my head! - you can leave plurals unmarked, you can add a prefix or an infix, you can change an affix, you can use full or partial reduplication, you can use mandatory measure words, you can have the unmarked word undergo a systematic phonetic change (think "goose, geese" or "foot, feet"). And of course, as in English, sometimes multiple systems can jostle together.

For an advanced move, consider or having dual, trial and/or paucal marking in addition to simple singular/plural, or marking the singular instead of the plural either for all words or only words of a certain semantic group (ie, those things you don't expect to see just one of, like birds or children or candies or worries).

If you intend to write entire sentences, ask yourself if it might make sense to mark words other than or in addition to the noun, and if plural marking must be obligatory.


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conuly: (Default)
she tells me that everybody at the office loves him, and makes special trips back just to say hi. I'm never sure how much of this is true, and how much is hyperbole designed to keep me coming back. I mean, we love Finn and would certainly make special trips to say hi if he was confined in a crate for a few hours... but that's because he's kinda needy and he howls (and, apparently, chews things when trapped in crates, something he emphatically doesn't do at home). There's no way for me to ask and know for sure that I'll get an honest answer.

Anyway, now he's shaved and boy does he look pink!

In other news, the word of the day email is a word I already know and know the etymology of off the top of my head, which is always disappointing... although it occurs to me to wonder exactly what it means when I say that "pelf" is in my active vocabulary.


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conuly: (Default)
77 degrees! I took the dogs' sweaters off, poor things, but tomorrow it'll be under 60 again.


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conuly: (Default)
HIAS is offering a printable refugee-crisis Haggadah. From the outside it seems like a pretty appropriate theme for the holiday, and I feel you'd be hard-pressed to find a current cause that's more important than the tens of millions of people who are currently displaced... though global warming is a close second, and anyway, likely to only create more refugees.


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conuly: (Default)
A few minutes into the first episode and I already have so many questions, questions like: Does Amanda know how to help Michael take care of Michael's hair? (I'm sure Sarek neither knows nor cares, sorry.) Did they tell Spock before plopping a new "friend" on his plate? Doesn't Michael have any other family that could take her in? Who's the social worker who approved this placement? Not only is Sarek the worst, but aren't cultural considerations a factor? Wouldn't it make more sense to place an 8 year old human child in a place with more humans? Like earth? (It's not like this family already knows her and is close to her. Like, if she and Spock were already BFFs it would make sense to place her with her friend's family so long as they were amenable to that. Or if they'd taken her in for a short term placement that somehow stretched out into the long term, it'd make sense for her to stay there.)

I mean, it's not that I think it is necessarily wrong, all else being equal, for a human kid to be raised by a mixed couple on Vulcan, but it's certainly not the obvious choice here. And it's not like she's an infant. She's a traumatized young girl who has been raised in a very different culture. (I'm not feeling too sanguine about Vulcan's ability and/or willingness to provide appropriate mental health care either, when it comes to that.) Who made this decision? Did they do any follow-up visits to check that everything was okay?

Also, their house is enormous. But, ambassadors, right?

More thoughts )
conuly: (Default)
He will look like a poodle instead of an undifferentiated mass of fur.


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conuly: (Default)
somebody who IS NOT ME ate some of my mint chocolate chip ice cream.



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conuly: (Default)
I saw a Blazing Comet, drop down hail,
I saw a Cloud, with Ivy circled round,
I saw a sturdy Oak, creep on the ground,
I saw a Pismire, swallow up a Whale,
I saw a raging Sea, brim full of Ale,
I saw a Venice Glass, Sixteen foot deep,
I saw a well, full of mens tears that weep,
I saw their eyes, all in a flame of fire,
I saw a House, as big as the Moon and higher,
I saw the Sun, even in the midst of night,
I saw the man, that saw this wondrous sight.

I wouldn't say this is the first poem I ever loved, but it's the poem I've loved the longest. It's certainly one of the most delightful poems I've ever met, surpassed only by the picture book Mirror, Mirror and its sequels. (Those books are worth having in any library, and if you haven't discovered them yet I don't know what you think you're waiting for.)


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conuly: (Default)
Neither of them is 100% on the no-meat front, but they're sincerely trying to cut down on how much of that they eat. (Alas, my mother wants meat at every meal, and while I say "If I can't make everybody happy I'll have to settle for making myself happy instead", in practice I've started trying to alternate meat nights with no-meat nights, with the missing-out party having to eat the sides.) Today we had pasta with vegetables and pancetta, which is great because everybody will eat it and it's easy for me to just serve the kids first and then dump the pancetta in the pot for the rest of us.

Eva, perhaps predictably, ate her pasta, nibbled her peppers, and went to eat an orange. "Why'd you put spinach in this!?"

"Because spinach is good for you. It's got lots of iron, calcium, vitamin c, and fiber. Oh, and potassium too!"
"Well, you know, Eva, vegetarian means you eat vegetables."
"But spinach isn't a vegetable!"
"You can't cut it, and anyway, vegetables are more fruity."
"More... fruity?"
"Like bell peppers and cucumbers. They have seeds. Spinach is leaves."

I don't know where she got this interesting idea from either.
conuly: (Default)
I just got a very random Amazon box, in my name, containing a... wire shower or spice shelf unit?

I didn't order this. Nobody in this house ordered this, and it's not under "my orders". It appears to have... a gift receipt? But with no message or identifying information? I don't remember ever seeing this, asking for it, or putting it on any wish list. What is going on here?
conuly: (Default)
April showers are supposed to bring May flowers, but it looks like we're already getting the flowers all over.


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conuly: (Default)
Which is all fine, except in the process you collectively managed to fool me into thinking it already was April. Good job!

I won't prank anybody either, but here's a comic that might amuse.
conuly: (Default)
I have finally managed to pull myself away to read some of my years-long backlog. Next up, Memory of Empire. "But Connie! Surely that book only came out a few days ago?" Yup, that's right, but it was on pre-order, so it counts. (Note to self: Stop putting so many books on pre-order.)

* Yeah, this is a thing that happens. I get stuck on one book (or other interesting thing) until I'm not. Specifically, this is an autistic thing that happens.


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conuly: (Default)
I'm now midway through The Lost Girl and I'm happy to report that her characters have read books published in this century. (And books I like, too.)

As for whether anybody else should read her books, I keep thinking that anybody who enjoys Hardinge will probably enjoy Ursu's books as well. I don't know why I think that, because neither their plots nor their characters nor their writing styles are so similar, but that's what I think.
conuly: (Default)
Poll #21672 Orthography
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 91

Which error is worse?

View Answers

Seamen for semen - "a crazy man tried to cure disease with his seamen"
18 (19.8%)

Semen for seaman - "welcome aboard, able semen!"
73 (80.2%)


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conuly: (Default)
I'm going through my kindle books and reading all the ones I know I never finished (or, in some cases, started) because, when I got them, I settled down to re-read instead.

First up: The Goblin Emperor. Verdict? Not too bad, and I want a sequel, though I suspect, based on the title, that the upcoming second book is not going to feature the eponymous Emperor as a viewpoint character. Don't tackle if you can't stand a book full of archaisms - "an" instead of "as if", old fashioned t/v distinction in English, occasional old-fashioned verb endings. Also think carefully about starting it if you can't read stories with people setting an excessively high standard for themselves and then beating themselves up (in the voice of their old abuser) whenever they think they've fallen short, that is, all the time. (This is not a complaint, but if this is something you do for much the same reason it might be better not to immerse yourself in another person doing it. Then again, maybe you'd think you can relate.)

Anyway, I liked it so much I read it twice, which is just the same error that got me into this mess in the first place (especially when you consider that I only thought I had it in my library but it turns out I never bought it, so I had to buy it to start. But this time I'm going to read something legitimately in the backlog.)


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Mar. 28th, 2019 03:23 am
conuly: (Default)
The top level entry in my DW inbox right now says nothing more than (You are not authorized to view this comment)

No indication of where that comment was left or by whom.
conuly: (Default)
He said he was trying to spare Jayme and her relatives. "Don't want them to worry about a trial"

Oh, he's so considerate isn't he. What a fucking scumbag.

Mind, it probably is for the best that she doesn't have to testify or see him again - and I surely hope her family is doing its best to keep her from his "apology" and all that garbage - but who does he think he's kidding? He's not worried about her, he's worried about himself.
conuly: (Default)
so I guess I have to go to the store.


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conuly: (Default)
and sorted all our books on the first floor, which is a significant fraction of our total physical books! Alas, she sorted by author's first name, and both her mom and I agree we'll have to redo it. (Eva was really annoyed by this and insisted it shouldn't matter. Well, at least it's sorted in some fashion now.)

On the subject of books, if you happen to like middle grade fantasy I must say I've been pretty happy with the books published as "Rick Riordan Presents" thus far.


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conuly: (Default)
So if you're a native English speaker who spent at least your childhood (ages 4 to 13) in the UK, you'd be helping us out if you go to and answer a few questions. Something I just noticed, though: the only gender options offered are male, female and prefer not to say, and you have to pick one. Sorry. There are Reasons for this, but it still sucks. I don't blame anyone who doesn't want to do the survey on that basis.

(England is better represented than other parts of the UK so far, and I know I have some friends who grew up elsewhere in the UK, so consider yourselves particularly looked-at-with-a-hopeful-expression.)

So if you fit that category, go take part!
conuly: (Default)
Maybe I'll think of something with enough cookbook flipping.


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conuly: (Default)
and now that everybody's done talking about it I'm gonna post them.

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conuly: (Default)
Today I'm heading over to the Homeschool Office to hand back Eva's letter and also our (belated) quarterly reports. The woman at the desk is sure to be pissy, but quite aside from the fact that I think it's a silly waste of time to have to hand those in personally rather than mailing them, I've been avoiding doing it pretty much to avoid her! I'll use the same line I used last time: "I'm not actually her mother, I'm here as a favor to my sister" and maybe this time she'll listen. (Well, every word of that is true.)


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conuly: (Default)
As it should be.

The picture is a link however you can click HERE as well.
conuly: (Default)
is the way nobody in this city will ever shut up about them. Especially Stuy. People are obsessed. And then some bright spark will inevitably say that the solution is to "fix the other schools" or "fix the middle and elementary schools" which... yes, it would be very nice if all schools in the city were very good schools, but people would still never ever stop their endless harping on these specific schools.

The state is now considering holding hearings on the subject of the SHSAT. I'm considering going, but as my only input is "The scoring is whack, we don't know if it tests for what it says it tests for, and those schools are overrated, and everybody in this room needs to seriously get a grip" I'm not sure I'd be quite welcome. Literally nobody ever appreciates my truth.


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conuly: (Default)
Two trips to Home Depot, geez.

Also, watched Sweeney Todd (the 2007 film) with the nieces and Jenn. I have now come to a conclusion as to which character in that play is most out of touch with reality. (It is, I think you'll agree, a tough call.)

Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 30

Which characters are most oblivious to reality?

View Answers

Sweeney Todd
1 (4.3%)

Mrs. Lovett
10 (43.5%)

Judge Turpin
1 (4.3%)

Beadle Bamford
0 (0.0%)

3 (13.0%)

1 (4.3%)

1 (4.3%)

4 (17.4%)

"The Beggar Woman"
2 (8.7%)

Which, if any, of the following characters recover from their ordeal?

View Answers

8 (27.6%)

3 (10.3%)

6 (20.7%)

The innocent pie-eaters
12 (41.4%)

None of the above
10 (34.5%)

Did the entire city of London lose their combs prior to the events of the 2007 adaptation?

View Answers

Evidently, poor things
13 (43.3%)

No, it's the fashion
3 (10.0%)

Their hair is the real crime
14 (46.7%)

The answer to the first question )


Links )
conuly: (Default)
Some doggies were very excited by this development, although a bit baffled as to why treats kept going into jars instead of their mouths. (Some treats made it into their mouths despite my best efforts. How can I say no to those faces?)

On a related note, I must find a place to put Callie's box scratcher.


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conuly: (Default)
I actually have found my own inaccuracy that caused me to roll my eyes, and this in a book with dragons! All the way in the appendix, so it shouldn't be a spoiler - the appendix discusses the domestication and breeding of elephants to become bigger. First, there is a reason we don't breed elephants despite the fact that they're extremely useful, and secondly I can't think of any megafauna we've bred to become bigger. They all become smaller. If this was a plausible thing, I think somebody in the real world would've tried it by now.

But then, in this series they also breed dragons, which you'd think would have the same problems but eversomuch moreso, so I'll just forget it. This book is much better than the last, you all were right on that front.


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conuly: (Default)
She drew some mice in Greek-style tunics the other day that were really good. (I mean, she was trying for togas, but she doesn't know what togas really look like and, in her defense, neither does anybody else. Togas go from the shoulder all the way down, and they're every bit as impractical as you think. There is a reason frat boys wear mocked up tunics instead.)
conuly: (Default)
This was her first choice, and as it's a screened school (and much in demand!) I wasn't feeling too sanguine, but here it is!
conuly: (Default)
Not much plot, lots of character development - just the way I like it!

Of course, it took me a while because I kept thinking of what crucial parts of our culture I'd regret not bringing with me in this scenario and also my chronic daydream of what I'd love to read if I could hop over to other universes on day trips. (Honestly, I'm so backlogged in THIS universe I don't know why I keep thinking about reading in other ones, but there you go.) Which got me wondering about the feasibility of putting my entire personal library on microfilm (microfiche?) in case I suddenly have to evacuate to a parallel universe or another planet or just another city and god forbid I wouldn't have it with me. Sure, I'd need a reader for maximum use, but the tech isn't that hard to obtain, and a magnifying glass would do in a pinch if I was desperate. (I would be.) There are no compatibility issues like with computers, and it lasts forever. Sure, people might think it odd that I showed up to my evacuation point or whatever with an already prepped bag of carefully stored microfiche, but they'd thank me later. Better to have it and not need it, right?

The real question is the feasibility of doing this at home. I may need to find a wealthy eccentric to do it for me, or at least fund it, an extreme prepper type, but, you know, "cultural" and "philanthropic". They'd probably want to save their home library first, though. God, so selfish!

(Now, how can I compatibility-proof store popular music and movies and tv shows? I guess sheet music and scripts will have to suffice.)


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