Also, I posted about Velma's death and notifying people on the "I need a hug" section of the Friends of Captain Awkward site, using real names in the post because it was easier than inventing pseudonyms. I got a PM this morning from someone who knew Velma from a fountain pen forum, asking "I hope not, but is that the same Velma?" I've also gotten a Faceboorequest for Soren's email address from someone who says he's an old friend of theirs—I replied and asked him for a non-Facebook address Soren can reach him at—and a very ill-timed FB friend request on Sunday from an ex of hers, which I hope is coincidence rather than some sort of vulturine response to the bad news.
Meanwhile, our cat julian_tiger has gotten very good at not taking pills, and had almost no appetite yesterday. (He was trying, but after a few nibbles of chicken sausage he had that "I want to be hungry for that" look.) This morning I tried him on bell pepper (again, he ate a little and clearly wanted to be hungry for more) and then plain yogurt. He was happy to lick some off my finger, then licked the bowl, so I gave him another tablespoonful. Then, on a hunch, I offered him some peach jam. Happy cat! He asked for seconds, and thirds, and fourths.
I found clementines at the supermarket this morning, and he was happy to help me with one. OK, he wants soft/moist things, and we're back in "orange food for orange cats." I bought salmon and a sweet potato for dinner. He was very happy to help us with them, in larger quantities than we would normally give him, which is a relief, because the vet confirmed that he can't live on just yogurt and fruit, he needs protein. Rationally, "orange food for orange cats" is as silly a basis for a menu as basing it on blood type, but everything there except maybe the peach jam is something I already knew he liked. We are much more optimistic than we were 24 hours ago, and I have at least enough cooked fish left to give him healthy treats tomorrow.
I may need to pick up some clearance decorative paper and make models that have more visual interest and that are a little less "proof of concept" with whatever I happen to have kicking around. On the plus side, I'm not stalling out because I don't have exactly what each project calls for, so yay, me!
I’m not a designer, but I’m hoping the cover isn’t quite as important for an e-book as it would be for an actual, physical, dead-tree book of the traditional variety, which this won’t be.
Having said that, here are some rough ideas. The first two are pretty clearly playing off the original cover for Left Behind, and I’m not pleased with how either one turned out. The third one seems more in keeping with the working title used here. (It’s also a concession to the idea that, if it’s gonna be ugly, might as well make it simple and ugly.)
So, then, two things:
1. Any preferences among those? Or would the general consensus be, “Ugh, none of them”?
2. This would be a collection of the first couple years’ worth of Left Behind posts, covering the first 200 pages of the first book. (At about 80,000 words, I suspect it’s actually longer than the first 200 pages of that book.) It’s a slightly cleaner, more convenient repackaging of material that all has been and will continue to be available for free in the archives here. Anybody have a good sense of what a proper/right/fair/sensible price would be for something like that?
Over at renaultx I'm keeping and updating a list of all the Renault requests with letters.
As part of the aptly named Crueltide I've declared my willingness to receive darkfic for Yuletide and offered some further details/prompts for my fandoms. While I decided not to throw my hat in the ring for Yuleporn, this one is right up my street.
1) Woe betide the bilingual! (Which I hardly am.)
2) Aren't there any shorter words that start with "el"? Like elan? Elastic? Elmo??
I did some electrical hiking on my way home, in fact, or rather, a street light shorted out with an audible pop as I walked by and darkened the neighborhood for 10 seconds. It's incredibly windy due to the northerly states being clobbered by weather, and I am not as enthusiastic for inspecting the attic now as I was some 8 hours ago let me tell you what. I have already had a fight with the elderly windows in the back hall, which are rattling in their frames, and now am regretting that I was not pushier about cutting back the oak which is clawing at my side window.
(Definitely hiring an arborist in the spring.)
It’s absurd to say that the Internet isn’t the real world. The Internet is where hundreds of millions of human beings work, play, organize, fundraise, share ideas, help each other, console each other. It is probably the single most important innovation in how the real human world operates in the last fifty years. …
The Internet is important. The Internet is real. And for millions of women, the Internet is a toxic cesspool. Telling women that if we don’t want to be abused and threatened we should just not go on the Internet is telling us to not participate in the world.
Isabel Wilkerson, “Mike Brown’s shooting and Jim Crow lynchings have too much in common”
The haunting symmetry of a death every three or four days links us to an uglier time that many would prefer not to think about, but which reminds us that the devaluation of black life in America is as old as the nation itself and has yet to be confronted. Beyond the numbers, it is the banality of injustice, the now predictable playing out of 21st Century convention – the swift killing, the shaming of the victim rather than inquiry into the shooter, the kitchen-table protest signs, twitter handles and spontaneous symbols of grievance, whether hoodies or Skittles or hands in the air, the spectacle of death by skin color. All of it connects the numbing evil of a public hanging in 1918 to the numbing evil of a sidewalk killing uploaded on YouTube in the summer of 2014.
The Church for All Sinners and Saints, “I am the church”
Yvette Cantu Schneider, with Evelyn Schlatter, “Redeemed: Former Ex-Gay Activist Renounces the Movement, Talks With Hatewatch”
I think the ex-gay movement will be dead within the next 10 years. As churches become more gay-affirming, parents and church leaders won’t seek parachurch ministries to “fix” in gay Christians what isn’t broken. The fact that the ex-gay movement has been a monumental failure with no real, lasting change in those who have sought to negate same-sex attractions and become heterosexual will become more and more apparent to the average lay Christian. This is especially true in the age of social media, when information spreads like wildfire and can’t easily be suppressed. I’m sure there will be pockets of people here and there who will still try to change someone’s orientation. But the movement as a relevant entity in the push for LGBT rights will be defunct.
Alastair Roberts, “Evangelicalism’s Poor Form”
Whether designed to clarify evangelicalism as an object of study or analysis, or to police its supposed boundaries, definitions of evangelicalism have generally tended to occlude the cultural, institutional, and sociological dimensions of the movement. This is unfortunate, as it is precisely these elements that are most salient in the experience of many within it. Evangelicalism is not typically experienced as a set of abstract and explicit doctrines or beliefs held by individuals, but more as a distinctive cultural environment within which such beliefs are inconsistently and idiosyncratically maintained. The official beliefs of evangelicalism exist alongside a host of other miscellaneous elements and the cross-pollination from the surrounding society, all sustained within local churches and a shifting constellation of denominations, movements, ministries, groups, and agencies.
Much that swims in the weird and wonderful (and sometimes not-so-wonderful) soup of evangelicalism was added quite independent of church leadership. There is a sort of evangelical folk religion, most of which is largely unauthorized by pastors or elders, a folk religion driven and populated by TV preachers, purity culture, uninformed theological speculations in democratic Bible studies, Chick tracts, evangelistic bumper stickers and T-shirts, Thomas Kinkade paintings, VeggieTales, Kirk Cameron movies, Amish romance novels, the Left Behind series, Focus on the Family literature, Christian bloggers, CCM, Christian dating guides, Answers in Genesis books, sappy mass-produced devotional literature, study Bibles for every conceivable niche market, and much else besides. Unsurprisingly, many presume that this all passed quality control and received the imprimatur of Evangelical Central Headquarters.
This is a space where anyone can ask for help in crafting the title, description, and other details of a panel they want to submit. Let us know what you need, such as: making a kernel of an idea into a full-fleshed panel, help crafting an effective description, coming up with a punchy title, or finding fellow panelists so you can submit a pre-populated idea.
Anyone may take part. If you're good at descriptions, join in! If you're good with conceptualizing, join in!
It will make discussions easier if you put one panel idea per comment (make as many as you want) and then folks can reply below each in the thread.
There will be a new brainstorming panel each month until panel submissions close. Spread the word :)
This morning I got a slight inkling to write a short story for a call for submissions a friend had mentioned in conversation to me over the weekend. I started writing at 10:00 a.m., and at 3... after breaks for breakfast and lunch... I had a finished draft that was just 33 words under the 10,000 word upper bound for the publication.
And I think it's pretty good. I'm going to have to do some streamlining because it could definitely stand to have some more physical description in places, but I'm pretty well-pleased by it.
And I am looking forward to having coffee again, and a good burger. Not that I couldn't have had a good burger already, but we have not had any inhouse to cook, just birdy things. Lots of chicken. And lots of fish. I don't think I will sprout pinfeathers or scales, though.
Still the quiet lake.
Add to the list of things that I would like: a pair of jeans that I ordered from Duluth Trading and sent back for exchange because they were too big. I'd like the new ones. :) Any time now.
But these things will come, eventually.
I am not looking forward, particularly, to Early Voting later this week -- if only because of the horde of politicos shilling for their candidates outside the building where the polls take place. I have never been comfortable walking through that kind of crowd, even when I was a reporter. But I think it will be all right.
Parliament Hill came under attack today after a man with a rifle shot a soldier standing guard at the National War Memorial in downtown Ottawa, before seizing a car and driving to the doors of Parliament Hill's Centre Block nearby.
MPs and other witnesses reported several shots fired inside Parliament, and a gunman has been confirmed dead inside the building, shot by the House of Commons sergeant-at-arms, according to MPs' eyewitness accounts.
Inks that I have used in working on RG on a notebook with Tomoe River paper:
Noodler's Black, Platinum Preppy F
J. Herbin 1670 Stormy Grey, Waterman 52V
Pilot Iroshizuku Kon-peki, azure pearl Parker Vacumatic
Pilot Iroshizuku Syo-ro, Reform 1745
Papier Plume Burgundy, Webster Four-Star
I need to ink something up with Montblanc Alfred Hitchcock so I can add that to the mix.
What I read
Finished Spirits Abroad which was lovely - short story collections can sometimes be a mixed bag but I thought this maintained a consistent standard of excellence.
Finally achieved the new Jane Haddam, Fighting Chance, and wow, that started in a desperate place and finished in a really grim twist.
Agatha Christie, Partners in Crime(1929), in which, in service to a longer plot arc, Tommy and Tuppence pretend to be running a private detective agency, leading them into solving various mysteries in the style of noted fictional hawkshaws of the day, not all of whom are noted by posterity. This rather undermines the joke.
Mary Cadogan, Mary Carries On: Reflections on some favourite girls' stories (2008) - bits and pieces, essays that didn't really add much to her existing ouevre.
Also, knocked off some Sekkrit Projekt reading.
Plus, while traveling, various short pieces on the Kobo.
On the go
Started a re-read of EM Delafield's Gay Life (1933), which is an exemplar of just how uncosy, how very not gentle-humour, EMD can be.
Dunno. Have some SP reading with me plus masses on Kobo.