May 29th, 2017
posted by [syndicated profile] notalwaysright_feed at 10:00pm on 29/05/2017

Posted by Not Always Right

Library | Glasgow, Scotland, UK

Coworker: “There are a load of books that have been put under ‘N’ instead of ‘K,’ because they start with ‘knee’ and ‘knife.’”

Me: “That’s going to be a serious problem.”

Coworker: “We can monitor it and see if it gets worse. We’ve had a few new starters this week, so maybe one of them doesn’t know the system.”

(We did monitor it and the problem only surfaced in the early mornings on weekdays, which was when the new starters worked. We called in the starters and gave them a literacy test. We were originally going to keep the results private and secretly put those with a lack of understanding through training, but it turned out the entire group failed. They all came from the same school, so I can only imagine how bad it was there. We ended up setting up an adult literacy course for them, in the preschool area (the owner’s choice). It was quite a surreal moment walking in to the library and seeing nine early-twenty-year-olds all seated and learning their ABCs. It fixed the problem, though, and many seemed thankful for it.)

The post Getting The Nowledge appeared first on Funny & True Stories - Not Always Right.

jessie_c: Me in my floppy hat (Default)
malkingrey: (Rain)
posted by [personal profile] malkingrey at 06:24pm on 29/05/2017
Yet another in a springtime filled with them. And we appear to be moving into a summer of more of the same.

I have been doing some paperwork which I have put off doing for far too long. God, I hate paperwork. Even if these days it isn't done on paper. (At least if I'm doing it on the computer I don't have to worry about my dreadful handwriting, or about how to fit answers into boxes not big enough to hold them. Small mercies.)

I've got a creamy tortellini soup going in the crockpot -- a new recipe, so tonight will tell whether it becomes a regular member of the Dinnertime Repertory Company or gets hustled off the stage with a "don't call us; we'll call you." Tastes good so far to me -- but I'm a soup fan, and today's a soup kind of day. Don't know yet how Himself will take it.
Mood:: 'blah' blah
kate_schaefer: (Default)
posted by [personal profile] kate_schaefer at 12:41pm on 29/05/2017
The older granddaughter is about to graduate from college.

This is the point where one says, But wasn't she just born, just yesterday? And sentimental songs about how fast time goes by play on the soundtrack, and we look at the pictures of her childhood.

Forget the soundtrack, but I have been going through the pictures of her childhood. Between the dust (on the boxes in which the pictures are stored, not on the pictures themselves) and the sentimentality, it's not an easy task. She wanted pictures from her first day of school; I found them, though we've never labelled things properly nor stored them in any real order. Her infancy, her birthday parties, her trips to the zoo, her teddy bears, her Halloween costumes, her family, her friends, her teachers, her projects. Her childhood.

She's been an adult for several years now, self-supporting while she earned first her associate's degree and now her bachelor's degree in accounting. After graduation, she will study for the CPA exam. We could not be more proud of her.

Congratulations on all your hard work, grandchild, and best of luck on the hard work yet to come. You're a fine human being.
frith_in_thorns: (PR Mako smile)
posted by [personal profile] frith_in_thorns at 11:17pm on 29/05/2017 under ,
I signed up for a [community profile] genprompt_bingocard! Lots to think about on it...

Smoke and Fog Mind and Body Gore Australia Puppets
When I'm 64: Future Awkwardness Afternoon The Cost of Magic Someone is Disguised
Careless Talk Costs Lives When we were Young: Nostalgia Wild Card Infiltration Apocalypse
Enemies Home-cooking Extrovert Blood Trade Winds
Friendship Happy Endings Mixed Media Case / Mission Fic Triads (Maiden / Mother / Crone, The Fates, Macbeth's Witches, etc.)
alexseanchai: Purple lightning (Default)
posted by [personal profile] alexseanchai at 06:08pm on 29/05/2017 under
17catherines: Amor Vincit Omnia (Default)
posted by [personal profile] 17catherines at 07:47am on 30/05/2017
I've been trying to write Michael's first story for a year and a half now.  He really needs to have his story written because there are a lot of stations in Paris that are named for him, and he keeps showing up in everyone else's stories being an angelus-ex-machina.  But he doesn't want his own story.

Until now, when he decided that he wanted a story involving time travel and alternate history and epidemics and Louis Pasteur and sneaky Camus, and more research than I have EVER done on one of these stories (ask me about silk worm parasites!  Actually don't, they aren't very interesting, but I promise you, I know a lot more about them than I did before).

I honestly can't tell any more whether this story is good or bad.  I can only tell you that it was absolutely determined to be written, and once I started writing it, I couldn't write anything else, which was a little alarming, because I haven't had a story that was quite this stubborn for some time.  Also, I am pretty sure I was the wrong author for this job (this is not about false modesty, it's about the fact that every single time I tried to figure out the time travel plot and the alternate timelines, I instantly got a headache - I really think my brain is not wired for this sort of story structure, which is a shame, because now that I have established Michael as a time traveller, I have a horrible feeling that it's going to be a feature of all his stories.  Though hopefully with less science, because my brain is also not wired for thinking about alternate science history this much.).

And then, when it was finished, I couldn't post it for another three hours because I had absolutely no idea what to do about a title. 

Anyway, it's done now, in all its oddness.

It's called Dragon's Venom, and it's for Saint-Michel station.

And I would like to revert now to the alternate timeline where I didn't feel compelled to write this story, and instead got a reasonable amount of sleep over the last few days...

Mood:: 'accomplished' accomplished
conuly: (Default)
but I'm too lazy to thank you all individually, so this will have to suffice.

(Actually, I just thought one group thank you would look less silly than comment after comment of just the word "thanks".)
yhlee: Flight Rising Spiral dragon, black-red-gold (Flight Rising Jedao baby Spiral)
posted by [personal profile] yhlee at 04:45pm on 29/05/2017 under ,
Dragon Pearl raw rough draft done at about 75,000 words.


I think I'm going to have a COOKIE. A really nice woman came up to me in this bookstore café and gave me a coupon for a FREE COOKIE with the purchase of a café drink. (She said she had too many of these coupons and she'd eaten her fill of COOKIES. She also gave another coupon away to another woman in the café area before leaving the store.)

I may also buy a book on writing that I've been eyeing.

And also I have to read this book on Korean feng shui for worldbuilding/magic system purposes. (Tantalizingly, [personal profile] swan_tower, it references the practice of feng shui-derived geomancy in Japan as well as Vietnam, etc., but the focus is on Korea. The book is Hong-Key Yoon's The Culture of Fengshui in Korea: An Exploration of East Asian Geomancy and Ch. 12 is The Use of Geomatic Ideas in Chinese, Japanese, and Korean Cities, so maybe useful to you? I'm not very far in yet. The author is apparently trained in "cultural geography" (UC Berkeley), which I'm not even sure what that is because this is the first I've heard of it, but it might be worth seeing if he has academic articles on Japanese feng shui (fusui) specifically.
Mood:: 'relieved' relieved
steorra: Restaurant sign that says Palatal (palatal)
rachelmanija: (Books: old)
This is the first book I’ve read by Walsh. I think she’s best known for a children’s time travel novel, A Chance Child, and official Lord Peter Wimsey fanfic.

Earth has been environmentally devastated and is about to be destroyed; it’s unclear if that’s because of war or something else. Many people have already fled in spaceships. The book is from the point of view of a very young girl, Pammy, whose family is with the very last group to flee, in a low-grade spaceship and with minimal preparation and supplies. The mad scramble to get out results in everyone being allowed to bring exactly one book, but no one consulting with each other to prevent duplication; this has major repercussions on the planet they end up on.

This is children’s sf, very short, written in clear, simple prose but with some remarkably beautiful imagery. It’s written from the point of view of a very young girl, Pammy, but she uses “we” and “Pammy” rather than “I,” reflecting that she’s part of a community of children.

The best aspect of the book is the evocative descriptions of the alien world and its landscapes and ecology. I absolutely love this sort of thing, and the world here is my favorite type: dangerous, strange, and beautiful. The book was worth reading just for that. It also has an excellent ending.

I had some problems with the plot, both because some crucial points required everyone to be idiots and that some things needed more explanation to be plausible or emotionally resonant.

The rule about bringing only one book is supposedly because of weight/space issues, but a tiny children’s paperback and the complete works of Shakespeare are both considered “one book.” This makes no sense. It should have been determined by weight or mass, as those were the reasons for the restriction.

Other issues are spoilery. Read more... )

The Green Book
sartorias: (JRRT)
posted by [personal profile] sartorias at 02:36pm on 29/05/2017 under ,
The story is about to branch out. At the start of book five, we’re back with Pippin, peering out from under Gandalf’s cloak, after the ride that seemed to set the world spinning under Shadowfax’s hooves.

I’m trying not to mention the Jackson films (especially as so much was disappointing) but one of the things I absolutely loved was a bit I didn’t even notice in my first rapid readings as a kid: the lighting of the beacons.

We find out about it through dialogue, which—to a reader unfamiliar with the concept—doesn’t convey the drama: “See,” says Gandalf. “The beacons of Gondor are alight, calling for aid. War is kindled. See, there is the fire on Amon Din, and flame on Eilenach; and there they go speeding west: Nardol, Erelas, Min-Rimmon, Calenhad, and the Halifirien on the borders of Rohan.”

Not enough image for me to get the drama until I saw the films. (Other readers were probably much more astute.)

When they arrive at last, and Pippin wakens to Gandalf explaining him to the careful door guardians, Pippin is indignant at Gandalf claiming him to be a valiant man.

“Man!” cried Pippin, now thoroughly roused. “Man! Indeed not! I am a hobbit and no more valiant than I am a man, save perhaps now and again by necessity. Do not let Gandalf deceive you!”

Pippin then accidentally mentions Boromir, then picks up he shouldn’t have, and then speaks with the grace that is becoming such a part of him, young as he is: “Little service can I offer to your lord, but what I can do, I would do, remembering Boromir the brave.”

We slip out of Pippin’s POV (though writer me wishes we could have seen through his eyes) as we approach the High Court through the citadel—Aragorn’s future home, if all goes well. A quiet knell of what is to come as the description ends, “ . . . and in that space stood the houses and domed tombs of bygone kings and lords, for ever silent between the mountain and the tower.”

As they approach Denethor’s chambers, Gandalf asks Pippin not to mention Aragorn.

“Why not? What is wrong with Strider?” Pippin whispered. “He meant to come here, didn’t he? And he’ll be arriving soon himself, anyway.

“Maybe, maybe,” said Gandalf. “Though if he comes, it is likely to be in some way that no one expects, not even Denethor. It will be better so. At least he should come unheralded by us.”

Gandalf then stings Pippin for not paying attention to the talk of kingship—something far, far outside of Pippin’s experience. (And one might even say, interest.)

And so at last we meet Denethor, and I have to say, anyone who claims that Tolkien’s characters are one-dimensional is just not paying attention. The byplay between Gandalf, who understands Denethor’s complexities (and the battle he is losing), and Pippin, who has no idea, but is inspired to carry out his rash promise made at the door, and Denethor, who in meeting young Pippin is given a brief glimpse of sunlight and possibility, but who in the end cannot overcome his own weaknesses, is so intriguing, tense, subtle, changing mood every page.

After they leave, Pippin says he did his best. “Indeed you did your best,” Gandalf says. “And I hope it may be long before you find yourself in such a tight corner again between two such terrible old men.”

Pippin then meets Beregond, through whose eyes we get a glimpse of the ordinary Gondorian—we get a tour and a history lesson, until something horrible happens.

“What was that?” asked Beregone. “You also felt something?”

“Yes,” muttered Pippin. “It is the sign of our fall, and the shadow of doom, a Fell Rider of the air.”

It’s Pippin who first recovers, and he states that he won’t despair. Though he is no warrior and dislikes the thought of battle, he says it feels worse to be on the edge of one that he can’t escape.

As Beregond speaks to bolster his own courage, Pippin makes a very shrewd observation to himself: Alas! My own hand feels as light as a feather. A pawn, did Gandalf say? Perhaps; but on the wrong chessboard.

Shortly after Pippin meets Bergil, Beregond’s son, who talks with the typical belligerence of ten. Pippin demonstrates perhaps his existence between youth and adulthood in his ease of adapting to the son as well as to the father, and in Bergil’s company he enjoys himself, “the best company Pippin had had since he parted from Merry.”

Who we catch up with in chapter two. Merry is pretty much relegated to baggage as the Rohirrim and Aragorn figure out what to do and where to go.

Halbarad shows up, bringing a wrapped gift, and here we get our second mention of Arwen, though at even further a distance than we had in Elrond’s house. But there is a subtle hint of the relationship, far too subtle for me to pick up at fourteen.

Arwen sends word along with the mysterious gift, The days are now short. Either our hope cometh, or all hope’s end. Therefore I send thee what I have made for thee. Fare well, Elfstone!

Now, at fourteen, I wrongly assumed that the old-fashioned pronouns and verbs were extremely formal, as I encountered them only sometimes, and always couched in more formal-seeming dialogue. But JRRT rightly knew that ‘thee’ and ‘thou’ were strictly for intimate speech, the equivalents of ‘tu’ in French and “Du” in German—though English had decided to opt for the formal ‘you’ whose verbs take very little declension. That and the ‘Elfstone’ are pretty much the modern equivalent of “You’ve got this, sweetie-dumpling. Mwa!”

And likewise, Aragorn saying, “Keep it for a while,” was a promise that yeah, our time is coming, and this present indicates that you’ve got my back.”

Not obvious, nor full of remembered scenes of stolen passion, but I think when you pick up hints of meaning, they carry just as much punch as the more standard bash on the beautyrest.

Merry is fitted out with what amounts to kids’ armor and shield, and that is the attitude taken toward him as the Rohorrim and Aragorn make their plans—which include a very long debate about the Paths of the Dead, during which Aragorn starts showing bits of the king beneath the Ranger.

As his star begins to wax, respect-wise, Merry’s is waning. He susses out that he is being gently shouldered to the sidelines along with the women and kids, and at the same time, Eowyn welcomes her uncle back, and gets ready to see to everyone’s comfort—to be told that Aragorn is planning to take the deadly shortcut.

Eowyn’s aid is rejected, and she explains bitterly that her fear is of a cage, not death. JRRT certainly shows he understands this mood and mode, and though it’s probably highly irrelevant, or wrong, or whatever, but from the few hints we get about his homelife, I wonder how much of Eowyn was confessed on the marital pillow. We know that he loved his wife, but we also glimpse through the letters and diaries of the Inklings that JRRT spent a great deal of his free time among other men, writing his projects, while his wife was stuck home with the long hours of drudgery, from which she probably got very little relief, as they were not wealthy enough for a staff. She might have complained—she had been an artist on her own before marriage—and he might have sympathized, but they were both caught in cultural roles from which it seemed there was no escape except wealth.

At any rate, the bitterness that Eowyn feels in being forced into the mold expected of most females resonated so very strongly for many of us in the sixties, that she was the favorite character of a lot of us. Certainly mine.

Aragorn shuts her down, saying, “Stay. For you have no errand to the South.”

To which she retorts with absolute truth—and equally absolute bitterness—“Neither have those who go with thee. They go only because they would not be parted from thee—because they love thee.”

Note once again, the choice of pronouns: Aragorn gives her the formal ‘you’—as he in honor must—and she gives him ‘thee.’

Aragorn and company embark on their grim journey, once again touching on tales we don’t learn as they pass a grim place. “Hither shall the flowers of simbelmyne come never until word’s end. Nine mounds and seven there are now green with grass, and through all the long years he has lain at the door that he could not unlock. Whither does it lead? Why would he pass? None shall ever know!”

Aragorn meets with the shadowy figures in a tense, memorable scene when he calls upon the Oathbreakers and promises them peace at last, and he leads the King of the Dead on his quest.

The township and the fords of Ciril they found deserted, for many men had gone away to war, and all that were left fled to the hills at the rumor of the coming of the King of the Dead.
dine: (tiara - robanybody)
steorra: Restaurant sign that says Palatal (linguistics)
"[NAME], do you care which pair of keys who gets?"

I just said that.

I think it's a supposedly disallowed wh-configuration, though I haven't stopped to work it out. I wanted to note it down before I forgot it.
posted by [syndicated profile] notalwaysright_feed at 09:00pm on 29/05/2017

Posted by Not Always Right

Customer: “I am looking for a [Type] wine I tried the other day.”

Associate: “Was it red or white?”

Customer: “It was purple, dumb-a**.”

The post Purple Raises Some Red Flags appeared first on Funny & True Stories - Not Always Right.

posted by [syndicated profile] notalwaysright_feed at 08:30pm on 29/05/2017

Posted by Not Always Right

Home|Home | USA

(This happened a few years ago during the summer while I am babysitting my neighbor’s daughters. They’re six and four years old respectively, and are sweet, adorable, and very inquisitive. They’re telling me about what grade they’ll each be in for the upcoming school year, and eventually ask me about it:)

Older Girl: “What about you, [My Name]? What grade will you be in?”

Me: “Actually, I’ll be going to college.”

Older Girl: *totally shocked* “Really? Do you have to drive there?”

Me: “Yep! But my mom and dad are probably going to drive, since there’s no room to park in the city. I know how to drive, though.”

Older Girl: “Wooooah! You’re like a grown-up! Are you gonna get married and have kids?”

Me: *laughing* “Oh, gosh, maybe someday, but not anytime soon. I’m not THAT old.”

(The four-year-old, who’s been listening intently this entire conversation, finally joins in with this:)

Younger Girl: *completely serious* “I want to get married, but I DON’T want any children.”

Me: “Don’t worry; you don’t have to have kids if you get married.”

Younger Girl: *genuinely relieved* “Good, I don’t like children.”

(I barely held it together. I also enjoyed the implication that children and marriage are an automatic packaged deal, no exceptions.)

The post Self-Loathing Childhood appeared first on Funny & True Stories - Not Always Right.

alexseanchai: Purple lightning (Default)
lovelyangel: (Eve Angel)
posted by [personal profile] lovelyangel at 01:14pm on 29/05/2017 under ,
Device housekeeping day…

Updates on Belldandy:
  • macOS updated from 10.12.4 to 10.12.5
  • macOS Server updates from 5.3 to 5.3.1
  • Final Cut Pro updated from 10.3.3 to 10.3.4
  • iMovie updated from 10.1.5 to 10.1.6
  • iTunes updated to
  • BusyCal updated from 3.1.7 to 3.1.8
  • Omnigraffle updated from 7.3 to 7.3.1
  • Adobe Lightroom CC updated from 2015.10 to 2015.10.1
  • Adobe Camera Raw updated from 9.10 to 9.10.1
  • Uninstalled Adobe Photoshop CS6

Updates on Meiko:
  • iOS updated from 10.3.1 to 10.3.2
  • Various app updates including Midori 1.8.11, PCalc 3.6.4, and VSCO 26.0

And an annoyance… I don’t know when iTunes functionality was changed… but the current version (12.6.1) doesn’t allow me to select music playlists to sync to my iPod nano 6G devices. The only option allowed is to sync all music, but I don’t dare do that because there’s not enough storage in the tiny nanos. So I can’t put any of my new Naruto music on my nanos. :(
Music:: コバルト (TrySail)
jacey: (Default)

Locked away in an underground bunker (a massive cave) for a year-long experiment to find the secret of star-travel, Kir, a young scientist with a super-computer in her brain tries to figure out what’s really going on.

Is it me? I read a lot of science fiction, but there were times when I simply didn't follow this. Not sure it makes me like it if it makes me feel stupid. And I REALLY wanted to like it. The blurb for the book explained things far more clearly than the text did. Sadly the jargon, somewhat hazy explanations and the heroine Kir who seemed strangely incurious and unemotional even when her emotions should have been screaming at her, put me off this.
posted by [syndicated profile] notalwaysright_feed at 08:00pm on 29/05/2017

Posted by Not Always Right

Office | PA, USA

(This is the day after the tragic Orlando, FL, shooting where one man targeted patrons at a gay nightclub. My coworkers and I are discussing the event. Three of the five of us in the discussion are openly gay or bisexual, including myself.)

Shift Lead: “I can’t believe someone would just get so upset that they felt the need to kill so many innocent people.”

Coworker: “They were just getting rid of people that don’t belong in this world.”

(The four of us just look at this one coworker in shock.)

Shift Lead: “Wait, what?!”

Me: “That’s REALLY wrong for you to say! What do you mean, ‘people that don’t belong in this world’?”

Coworker: “NONE of them belong here!”

(I had to leave the room because of how upset I was feeling. Word quickly spread up the chain of command of this coworker’s comments, and she was heavily reprimanded. She had to make a formal apology to me and the other LGBTQ coworkers, and basically remained on thin ice with the administrative staff for some weeks after that.)

The post That Opinion Belongs Nowhere appeared first on Funny & True Stories - Not Always Right.

al_zorra: (Default)
     . . . . David Blight, renowned historian of the era of Reconstruction and Jim Crow, muses upon Mitch Landrieu's moving speech in New Orleans on the occasion of bring down New Orleans's white supremacist monument to the glorious lost cause of perpetuating and expanding slavery throughout the entire United States (and hemisphere, at least for the most hopeful and deluded of the secessionists), and the changing meaning for the country of Memorial Day.

It's in the Atlantic Monthly, here.






By the way, how many of us know that today's holiday is not the same as Veteran's Day, and that the first Memorial Day-- then called Decoration Day -- was instituted by African Americans in Charleston, South Carolina, on May 1, 1865?  Blight has written extensively about this process in his laudable Race and Reunion: The Civil War in American Memory.




The Library of Congress preserves this photo, taken in 1865 while the African-American reconstruction of the cemetery in Charleston was in progress. The rows of markers are newly established individual Union graves.


jacey: (Default)
posted by [personal profile] jacey at 06:14pm on 29/05/2017 under ,
Sorry if I've been out of the loop, I've been writing, but at last I'm getting to the end of Nimbus. I just have to do a final read-through now before sending it off to my editor. As soon as it goes I'll be working on the next one, of course.

It's a wet and misty bank holiday Monday, so I've just had a massive catch-up day posting my book logs and movie-of-the-week posts. Though to be honest it's been a bit of a thin few weeks for movies - or at least for the movies that we want to see. My cinebuddy, H and I try to go on a Tuesday or a Wednesday afternoon, taking advantage of the Meerkat Movie two-for-one offer. We make a beeline for science fiction and fantasy. We really enjoyed Guardians of the Galaxy 2, though both of us drew the line at Alien Covenant, since Promethius was so bad. Luckily we have Pirates of the Caribbean 5 and Wonder Woman coming up.

It's been a busy few weeks at Bedford Towers with several musician friends passing through - often with barely any time to change bedding between visits. Our washer and dryer have been working overtime and I've been trying to remember who's allergic to what when planning meals. One is dairy, eggs and gluten intolerant, another is onions, and one of them is allergic to 'pretty much everything except fish and a few vegetables, but luckily is happy to cook suitable meals separately.

First Tania Opland and Mike Freeman from Washington State via Ireland. Then it was the Northwrite weekend with four writers staying for our critique day on the Sunday.

As the last writer left on Monday Morning, Dan McKinnon (Canada) arrived from the airport. Cloudstreet

Dan left and James Keelaghan and Hugh McMillan arrived, also from Canada,

The day that they left Cloudstreet (right), John, Nicole and Emma, arrived from Australia, so it's been pretty full-on, but we have a few weeks now before Cloudstreet swing back again as they arrive to do three gigs in Yorkshire at the end of the month.

Then we have a few days before Dan returns, this time with his wife, Nancy, who's joining him for the last part of the tour,

I have some of the best houseguests.

pensnest: hummingbird against blue background (Hummingbird)
posted by [syndicated profile] notalwaysright_feed at 07:30pm on 29/05/2017

Posted by Not Always Right

(My boyfriend and I are at the wedding of a couple we’re good friends with. It’s worth noting that all four of us are huge nerds, and the couple have vowed to have the geekiest wedding ever. While we’re waiting for the ceremony to start, Boyfriend is reading through the program.)

Boyfriend: “Procession, vows… wait, ring warming? What’s that?”

Me: “No idea. Passing the wedding rings through the flame of a unity candle or something?”

Boyfriend: “What, to reveal the Elvish inscription and determine if you accidentally chose an evil, cursed wedding band to rule them all?”

Me: *laughing* “Well, with [bride and groom], it’s totally a possibility…”

(The ring warming actually turned out to be passing the rings among the guests and asking everyone to add their warm thoughts and good wishes to the wedding bands. It was a very cute tradition, and an impressively nerdy ceremony, but alas, no dark rings of power!)

The post The Wedding Vow Of Mordor appeared first on Funny & True Stories - Not Always Right.

kevin_standlee: (Fernley)
posted by [personal profile] kevin_standlee at 12:03pm on 29/05/2017 under
...there's a brush fire, in this case.

Yesterday morning after having breakfast at the Wigwam, I was walking to the Frontier Fun Center to play pinball (it being too hot to work in the middle of the day on Sekrit Home Improvement Project) when I saw a lot of smoke in the distance.

Uncontrolled Burn )

I got grumpy at someone who called a "controlled burn" an oxymoron and said "remember that the next time you start your car." I suspect he won't get it.
location: Fernley, Nevada
posted by [syndicated profile] notalwaysright_feed at 07:00pm on 29/05/2017

Posted by Not Always Right

(I work at a very large church in NYC that’s also a popular tourist destination. We’re known not just for our grandeur, but also our programming, both liturgical and secular, which brings a lot of people through our doors. I work in the gift shop, which is also something of a reception area. In the middle of a busy day, I get this phone call.)

Me: “[My Church] Visitors Center. This is [My Name].”

Caller: “Hi, there’s an organ concert happening at [Church on the other side of town] next week and I’m coming into Penn Station to hear it.”

(Please note, we have organ concerts, as well, so I’m thinking this has something to do with our organist.)

Caller: “How do I get there?”

Me: “From [My Church]?”

Caller: “No! From Penn Station! Can I walk to Madison Avenue and then take the Madison Avenue local?”

Me: “Walk to Madison Avenue from Penn Station? It’s kind of far.”

Caller: “But can I walk it?”

Me: “I suppose you could walk the entire way if you wanted to.”

Caller: “But I want to walk to Madison Avenue and then take the local up!”

Me: “This isn’t [Church across town]. This is [My Church].”

Caller: “I know! But no one was picking up over there!”

Me: “I can try to help get you directions, but we’re not affiliated with that church, so I’m not familiar with where it is.”

Caller: “I know you’re not! I’m just trying to find out if I can walk to Madison Avenue and take the Madison Avenue local up!”

Me: “To get across town your best bet is to take the shuttle at Times Square.”

Caller: “I don’t want to take a shuttle! What subway should I take!”

Me: “The shuttle is the subway you should take. It runs from Times Square to Grand Central and back.”

(This goes on for far longer than you’d think it should, after I’ve given him explicit subway instructions with him questioning me at every direction. He doesn’t believe me that there’s no subway line on Madison Avenue. He doesn’t believe me that the closest subway stop is four blocks and two avenues from the church, and he’s getting increasingly frustrated that I don’t know the exact address and location of a church I don’t work for. My line is growing and my colleague — who is not required to answer phones, by the way — offers to take the call so I can get back to our visitors.)

Me: “I’m going to pass you on to my colleague, because I have a line of customers here who need help, but she will help you find the best way to get there.”

Caller: “Customers? What’s going on there? Is there an event?”

Me: “No, no event today.”

Caller: “Then what customers do you have?”

Me: “We have tourists visiting here every day.”

Caller: “Is this the gift shop?!”

Me: “Yes. I’m passing you on to my colleague now.”

(She takes the phone while I apologize to our paying customers. I can overhear her telling him basically the same things I said and apparently getting the same backlash. Ultimately I hear her say, “We don’t work for the MTA or that church, but the MTA’s website has a function to help you find the best route,” and shortly after that the call is over and my line has died down.)

Me: “What did he say when you told him you don’t work for the MTA?”

Colleague: “He said, ‘But you’re New Yorkers!’”

The post Wasn’t Done In A New York Minute appeared first on Funny & True Stories - Not Always Right.

beccaelizabeth: my Watcher tattoo in blue, plus Be in red Buffy style font (Default)
posted by [personal profile] beccaelizabeth at 07:36pm on 29/05/2017 under
A princess wants to be more practical than her parents allow, so she runs away to be a dragon's princess. Which involves swords, magic, latin, and cooking, just like she'd wanted to study, and also quite a lot of politics. But not marrying a prince, especially one she's only just met, so that works out well for her.

The only thing I didn't like about this book was it starts with the kind of fairytale where princesses are basically ornamental. Etiquette, protocol, dancing. Not so much about diplomacy or logistics or castle defence. But there were plenty of times later that the traditional princessing turned out to be useful, so I think on balance it didn't do the Not Like Other Girls or make anyone out to be useless.

I'll happily buy more like this.

Today is a theoretical holiday but Monday jobs are laundry and dishwashering because by Monday it needs doing. So I did one load dishwasher and two loads laundry same as usual. But that was a perfectly pleasant day.

I also put away the duvet and switched to blankets for the summer. More layers can cope with more variable weather, hopefully.

I feel like I need more things to do with my days. But basic maintenance functions would still need done, so.
posted by [syndicated profile] notalwaysright_feed at 06:30pm on 29/05/2017

Posted by Not Always Right

(I am a head teacher for the two- to three-year-old room of a daycare center. This age is known for tantrums, but this particular child takes the cake. Literally. We are having a little party in our room and parents have brought us treats.)

Me: “Who’s excited for our party?”

Children: “We are!”

Me: “Me, too. Now your parents have brought us yummy things like cookies, cupcakes, fruit, and popcorn. Should we eat only cookies and cupcakes?”

Children: “No!”

Me: “How come? I love cupcakes; they’re yummy!”

Children: “You’ll get a tummy ache!”

Me: “That’s right. So since we don’t want any tummy aches, I am going to give each of you only one cookie and one cupcake. Once you finish those you can’t have anymore, ok? But you can have more fruit and popcorn.”

Children: “Okay, Miss [My Name]!”

(My assistant teacher and I pass out the food and everyone is happy until one asks for more.)

Child: “I want another cupcake.”

Me: “Do you remember what I said before we started, [Child]? I said that everyone was only going to get one cookie and one cupcake. No more because you will get a tummy ache. But you can have some more fruit or popcorn.”


Me: “I understand that but no one else is getting more cupcakes. You’ve already had yours. Do you want anymore popcorn?”

(The child is upset and starts screaming loudly at me and my coworker. He pushes his plate off the table and falls to the ground. I am trying to calm him down when his grandma shows up to pick him up. She walks in, sees him screaming and having a fit, and me kneeling next to him.)

Grandma: “What’s going on?”

Me: “I explained to [Child] that before we started our party I would only give each child one cookie and one cupcake. He asked for another one and I reminded him what I said.”

Grandma: *grabbing the child’s hand* “Stop crying and we’ll get a treat at home.”

(Thanks, grandma. Unfortunately, my boss and other teachers also did this when the child didn’t like my answer. He quickly learned that he just had to scream loud enough to get someone else’s attention and whoever it was would tell him that they would get him whatever he wanted if he stopped crying. I quit shortly after.)

The post The Cake Is A Cry appeared first on Funny & True Stories - Not Always Right.

posted by [syndicated profile] notalwaysright_feed at 06:00pm on 29/05/2017

Posted by Not Always Right

Craft Store | USA

(I’m cashing out a woman and everything is going normally until I start to give the lady her change. I notice that the dollar that I gave her was written on so instead of saying “one” it says “stoner.”)

Me: *after pointing it out to the lady* “Sorry about that, ma’am. If you want I can get another bill for you.”

Lady: “That’s okay. I’ll take it anyway.”

(Several days later I see her in my line and she pays with dollar bills. I check the money and sure enough one says “stoner.”)

Lady: “It’s back!”

(We both start to laugh.)

Lady: “At least we had our laugh for the day. Have a good one.”

The post You Can’t Get Rid Of Stoners appeared first on Funny & True Stories - Not Always Right.

recessional: green background, a sketch of a chair and the words "i made him say COMFY CHAIRS" (personal; totes taking this srsly)
runpunkrun: lex luthor using a laptop and looking peeved, text: bad porn makes Lex evil (lex hates bad porn)
posted by [personal profile] runpunkrun at 11:25am on 29/05/2017
Has anyone been following Pillowfort's development? They're hoping to be a Tumblr replacement, kind of an LJ/Tumblr hybrid with reblogs and threaded comments. They're also hoping to avoid the pitfalls of LJ and Tumblr, but I feel like they're overcorrecting in some areas.

For example, in the interest of giving users complete control over their content, if a user deletes a post, all related content will also be deleted. That's everybody's reblogs, comments, tags, whatever. So if someone deletes their blog, your stuff goes with it. Other users shouldn't have control over my content like that. When you point this out to Pillowfort, they don't seem to understand people's concerns. Tumblr's reblogging of deleted posts is a problem, but this goes too far in the other direction.

Pillowfort has also recently said that "call-out" posts won't be allowed on their platform. And while obviously they can forbid anything they want on their site ("100000% no Nazis"), who's going to be deciding the difference between a "call-out" post and a complaint? You can't stop people from complaining. The purity brigade on Tumblr is out of control, but I swear to god that's their right. Banning "call-out" posts isn't going to stop them from being wrong in public.

In response to a concerned anon who thinks "call-out" posts are a necessary tool to alert people about a user's history of bigotry or abuse, the Pillowfort team says, "Our ToS already disallows rhetoric based in racism, harassment, bigotry, etc."

Is anyone on this team talking to each other? Social platforms should protect and defend their users from abuse, stalking, and harassment. They should have clear policies about what isn't allowed on their site, state the consequences for violating those policies, and then consistently enforce those policies. As long as the site has a working system in place to report and pursue violations, they don't need to make policies about something as specific as "call-out" posts. If, like they've said, their ToS already disallows these things, then—by their own logic—they don't need to ban "call-out" posts at all. Banning "call-out" posts—and I keep putting that in quotes because they don't define it—will, maybe, reduce a certain kind of harassment, or maybe people will just stop saying "this is a call-out post" and suddenly they'll get a lot harder to identify. The thing is, wankers gonna wank. I might not like or agree with what they're saying, but they have the right to say it, and if I value my own free speech, I have to protect theirs. But Pillowfort is saying they don't have the right to say it. That concerns me. They're focusing on the wrong end of the problem.

Unfortunately, I can't actually find a copy of their ToS, so I can only go by what the team says on their Tumblr. The site is in beta now, but I don't have an account, and it looks like you can only view their privacy policy if you're logged in, so maybe it's the same for their ToS.

Anyway, writing this made me feel like a right-wing lunatic because I kept wanting to use terms like "nanny state." This post used to be a lot longer.
thedeadparrot: (angel alley)
Hello, friends. Would you like to read a Blade Runner AU about grizzled, world-weary Mike and Jeff making their way through a gritty, noir, cyberpunk version of LA? I hope you do, because I wrote it.

To Do Wrong (14385 words) by thedeadparrot
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Hockey RPF
Rating: Explicit
Warnings: Graphic Depictions Of Violence
Relationships: Jeff Carter/Mike Richards
Characters: Jeff Carter, Mike Richards
Additional Tags: Alternate Universe - Cyberpunk, Alternate Universe - Blade Runner Fusion, Established Relationship

The years of doing this -- the same case files full of replicants, the same days and weeks of hunting them through the streets of LA, the same whistling of the kettle when the water's ready -- they're all sitting on Mike's shoulders, weighing him down.

kiya: (piece of the night)
posted by [personal profile] kiya at 05:34pm on 29/05/2017

Mirrored from Suns In Her Branches | Kiya Nicoll.

I didn’t do anything in particular to mark the Beautiful Festival of the Western Valley this year (25 May on my calendar) because I am buried under so much of everything that I barely know what month it is, let alone when the holidays fall. It did strike me, yesterday, how interesting it was that it fell so close to Memorial Day this year.

I’ve long described the Beautiful Festival as “a cross between Samhain and Mardi Gras”: the Veil is thin, the dead walk among us; have a flower garland, drink the good intoxicating drink! I’ve been doing some reading, quietly: stories about loss, of the beloved dead, of fallen soldiers, of others.

I’ve been thinking about Portland.

I’ve been thinking about the ways in which the modern pagan movement and the products of Naziism are two branches off the same oh so complicated tree, emerging from the same zeitgeist. I’ve been thinking about an “anti-monotheist” with runic imagery pulling a knife on people who tried to stop him from threatening two young women of color, one of them a hijabi, killing two of them and severely wounding a third.

(And I’ve been thinking about a young black man murdered by a white supremacist. A homeless black man murdered by another one. Charleston. The “mysterious deaths” of several black judges. I’ve been thinking, thinking, thinking.)

I’ve been thinking about how, when it’s a white man who does the thing, people leap to “mentally ill” and “lone wolf”. And I’ve been thinking about stochastic terrorism.

I don’t have a lot of coherent thoughts about any of this.

There’s a bit of European folklore, that takes a number of forms depending on the region, which may derive from older polytheisms: this idea that the Devil steals from us, takes away our harvest, our fertility, our hope. The Devil steals from us, with the help of those of the Devil’s party, robbing life from the world, and if we are going to live, we must ourselves go into Hell and take it back.

I think about that a lot, too.

The veil is thin. The dead walk among us.

In Flanders Fields the poppies grow.

jacey: (Default)
As movies go this one wasn't as bad as some of the reviews I've seen. The real problem was that it tried to present itself as a King Arthur movie while abandoning all elements of the legend apart from the sword in the stone and the names Uther, Vortigern and - oh yes - Arthur. Merlin got a brief mention but all of the magic came from his apprentice, a witch (unnamed). If the movie had simply presented itself as a second world fantasy it might have been better received.

Charlie Hunnam made a passable hero and Jude Law a slimy villain, but the 'castle' stretched credibility somewhat, though Londinium did look to be growing out of the remnants of Roman occupation. Maybe having a kung-fu master called George was a little out of place, but - hey - there was so much out of place that picking one thing would be mean.

So... Vortigern betrays Uther and Arthur - as a small boy - escapes downriver in a boat. He's rescued and brought up by whores in a brothel, gradually going from being protected to being protector and ruling the criminal element of the docklands, until he gets whisked off along with a load of other young ment the right age to try his hand with the sword in the stone. Vortigern quite rightly wants to discover who his rival might be and put an end to him.

Yes, of course, in trying to avoid the prophecy of the true born king, Vortigern puts everything into place for it to be fulfilled.

Posted by Not Always Right

(I work at the jewelry counter. A man approaches with an ad.)

Customer: *points at some opal jewelry in the ad* “Where are these?”

Me: *walks him over* “They are right here. It looks like we only have the ring and earrings. The necklace has been sold. We do have a similar, slightly cheaper opal with necklace and earrings though right here.”

Customer: *points to the ones in the ad again* “Where are these ones?”

Me: “Right here, sir.”

Customer: “And how much would they be for both pieces?”

Me: “It would be $210 plus tax for the both of them?”

Customer: “Okay, make me a deal.”

Me: “Um… it’s $210 plus tax.”

Customer: “No, I mean, what can you do for me? I want a deal.”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir. They’re already 60% off. They are $210 plus tax.”

Customer: “Call over a manager. I want you to make me a deal. You say $200 even and I’ll take both.”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir, but the price is firm. There are no more discounts.”

Customer: “Make it $200 even and you got a deal. [Company] needs to empower its employees to make deals.”

Me: “I’m sorry. The price is firm. I don’t know any retail environment that we can negotiate. I’ve worked retail for six years now.”

Customer: “Well, I’ve been doing this for 50 years.”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir. The price is $210 plus tax.”

Customer: “Ok, I’ll take the earrings. You just lost a sale.”

(I rang him up and he left. I’m really curious what stores he goes to that he can get away with that. If it was marked wrong or there was any good reason he should get a discount, I could have easily adjusted for him. It may have only been a small difference, but it’s the principal. You’re already getting a good deal. Take it and be happy. No need to be difficult and demand more than anyone else.)

The post How To Deal With People Who Want Deals appeared first on Funny & True Stories - Not Always Right.

famexmod: (Default)
circular_time: Nyssa's face seen through the grill of a Dalek's head. (dalek)
Title: Dalek Free Spirit (Chapter 2/8)
Author:[personal profile] circular_time
Rating: T
Pairing(s)/Character(s): Fifth Doctor & Nyssa (Platonic)
Warnings: Character Death
Spoilers: Prisoners of Fate, Entropy Plague, Dalek Soul
Summary: Nyssa is lost, probably dead. Yet the tangled skein of their timeline has one more wrinkle. When the Doctor learns that the Daleks cloned her during a previous encounter, he faces an impossible choice: save her twin, who may be just as twisted as Nyssa's father after the Master possessed him, or... exterminate all that's left of a dear friend.
jacey: (Default)
Anyone can save the Galaxy once... so second time around Star Lord has some additional help from old foes who become new allies - Nebula, Yondu and Mantis. Add to that a delightful Baby Groot. (How can an animated twig be so appealing?) Of course the original team - Peter's family -  is still on board, Rocky, Gamora and Drax.

The opening sequesnce is merely a warm-up for the main tale as our hereoes battle the Abilisk - something that looks like a space octopus -  to protect some super-shiny batteries for their current employers, the Sovereigns (Nice cameo from Ben Browder in gold paint.) Of course they manage to upset the Sovereigns and after a space battle end up crash-landing on a planet where Peter Quill/Star Lord meets his father (Kurt Russell as Ego - the clue is in the name) and discovers he's half a god - unfortunately not the all-powerful half. In the process he learns more about the true meaning of family.

This is fun all the way with hijinx and mayhem plus some smart one liners. I found it just as enjoyable as the original. Highly recommended.

carbonel: (Default)
I'm doing a major catch-up on LJ, mostly of the RSS feeds I'm subscribed to, in preparation for adding all of those on DW. In the process, I'm also going to be unfriending anyone that I'm already subscribed/friended/whatever to on DW.

So if you receive a "you have been unfriended" notice from LJ, please don't take it personally. I'm posting this because I've been on the receiving end of some LJ unfriend notices, and it always gives me a bit of a pang, even when I know what's going on.
kjn: (Default)
posted by [personal profile] kjn at 05:58pm on 29/05/2017 under ,
2017 års Swecon var tillbaka i Uppsala och på Clarion Hotell Gillet, platsen för Swecon 2012. Den hölls den 26-28 maj och hade drygt 320 deltagare på plats över de tre dagarna (endast en uppskattning på söndagens morgon). Hedersgäster var Siri Pettersen från Norge samt Kameron Hurley och Ann Leckie från USA. Dessutom hade de Saladin Ahmed som hedersgäst emeritus, då han hade fått lämna återbud några månader innan kongressen. Jämfört med 2012 så var vi färre deltagare men hade också betydligt större programytor att tillgå, så det var betydligt lättare och behagligare att vara på kongressen som deltagare: det var inte alls samma problem med trängsel, dålig luft och buller.

Fortsättning följer )

Posted by Not Always Right

Being a naive freshman, while standing in front of my locker, I remove my purse in order to put my coat on, after which I plan to put it back on over the coat. First Big Mistake. I look away for a moment. Second Big Mistake. My purse is now gone.

Approximately three days later, I enter my English classroom. The teacher is standing there holding a very familiar object. My purse. Apparently, the thief decided to bring it to class, stuck it under her chair, and forgot about it.

After the class, the teacher recognized it as mine. Apparently, no one else he taught had one made of black denim with a GameBoy Advance inside. Oddly, despite having had the time to remove and/or sell the contents, nothing inside had even been touched.

Yes, there were thieves at my high school, but they happened to be idiots.

The post Shame They Can’t Steal Some Intelligence appeared first on Funny & True Stories - Not Always Right.

posted by [syndicated profile] bruce_schneier_feed at 03:22pm on 29/05/2017

Posted by Bruce Schneier

Last year, I wrote about the potential for doxers to alter documents before they leaked them. It was a theoretical threat when I wrote it, but now Citizen Lab has documented this technique in the wild:

This report describes an extensive Russia-linked phishing and disinformation campaign. It provides evidence of how documents stolen from a prominent journalist and critic of Russia was tampered with and then "leaked" to achieve specific propaganda aims. We name this technique "tainted leaks." The report illustrates how the twin strategies of phishing and tainted leaks are sometimes used in combination to infiltrate civil society targets, and to seed mistrust and disinformation. It also illustrates how domestic considerations, specifically concerns about regime security, can motivate espionage operations, particularly those targeting civil society.


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