redfiona99: (Default)
I may be slowing defeating the crochet demon but I need to know, is it supposed to lie flat? When I do squares they come out ... ridged. Are you supposed to not turn or turn the piece at the end of each row? I think it's one of those obvious questions that are too obvious for the crochet magazines to mention.
redfiona99: (Thinking)
Q. When did the terms "United Kingdom", " UK" come into common usage? Was it post Suez Crisis (1956)?

Any ideas?

The reason he's asking is because he was reading through newspaper coverage of WWI and most of the it talks of England, Scotland etc rather than United Kingdom.
redfiona99: (Thinking)
For reasons I shall go into at a later date, I'm planning on writing to the Foreign Secretary and to the Business, Industry and Skills Minister. Can anyone tell me what form address I use for Vince Cable, given that he's not only a Right Honourable, but also a PhD? I know for the Foreign Secretary it's 'Dear Foreign Secretary' (thank you, the Debrett's website) but I have no idea if "Dear Secretary of State for ..." is right for BIS.
redfiona99: (Thinking)
Went to see Edge of Tomorrow. Not the cerebral flick I had been led to believe it was but it was a solid action flick with a nice line in black comedy.

It could have done with a brief geography lesson and one tiny bit of Brit-picking )

Yes, I'm being nit-picky but it had a budget of $175 million, I expect the details to be checked.

I did like it, but I thought the ending let it down a bit. Spoilers )

The real question becomes, when did secondary character wearing a Hawaiian shirt become Hollywood shorthand for "yay we've cast an Aussie"? Not that I mind Kick Gurry getting a part. Actually, the real question is why Noah Taylor not in everything? (This can be joined by 'why is Saïd Taghmaoui not in everything' because he should be. He was the only enjoyable thing about Conan the Barbarian.)

Bill Paxton and Emily Blunt are also very good in this, and I like what they do with the main character and Tom Cruise does it well.

~~~~

Forgive me football fans, I am about to sin. I shall miss the first three World Cup games (fencing, charity quiz, wedding). I feel strange and peculiar about this.

~~~~

That was not the fic I expected to finish next. It leads to an important question. If I say "Doctor In The House", am I the only person who flashes straight to James Robertson Justice?
redfiona99: (Thinking)
A friend who writes books and can be found here (http://davidbridger.com/) earlier today posted a request to see if anyone could identify a book he remembered from school. No-one's been able to identify it yet so I was wondering if anyone on my f-list could.

>>It’s about a boy who spends the summer holidays staying with his best friend’s family in their isolated house on a beach. There are legends of pirates in the area, and the boys discover they’re both dreaming the same dreams in which they’re taken back in time and actually meet the pirates. They take sides, the hero on the side of law and order and his now ex-friend in with the pirates. They fall out in real life, but try to keep their mutual antagonism hidden from the family.<<
redfiona99: (Thinking)
Would an average now-era American know what "cupboard love" is? Would anyone know who isn't my Grandmother use that expression?
redfiona99: (Thinking)
Unlikely I know, but does anyone have this clip to hand?

Books

Sep. 11th, 2013 03:52 pm
redfiona99: (Thinking)
Need some book recommendations for a bright 10 year old
redfiona99: (Thinking)
Does anyone have any books on robots, robotics and AI, fiction or non-fiction, that they'd care to recommend?
redfiona99: (Thinking)
Question first:

Character A is in Lurve with character B.
Character B (who is probably as in love with Character A as it is possible for him to be in love with anyone, it's just for character B values of love) tries to warn him off.

What the heck does author Me put in the header. I mean, I think it's a slash fic, but you can see the problem. It's not exactly unrequited but it's not even vaguely requited. Help, suggestions, comments that it really would be easier not to write Sherlock fic are all accepted.

~~~~

Day 30 – Do you have a favorite fic you've written? What makes it your favorite? And don't forget to give us a link!

Remarkably easy :)

Walking In These Shoes

I think it's my favourite because it succeeded on two levels:

1 - Artistic Merit - Or people liked it, people actually liked it. I got a lot of positive feedback from readers who hadn't even been the target audience. It has been recced in various places. People liked the mix of character and explosions.

2 - Technical Merit - I mostly write character pieces, where people think or talk but they do not do. There's no plot to them. So I said no, this time there would be plot. And there was. It may have been off-screen until it happened to Pepper but there was plot.

It's very satisfying when fics work on both levels.

Other Days )
redfiona99: (Thinking)
Hi-Tec have changed the fit of their squash shoes. Which is :( because they were a useful fencing shoe alternative (Hi-Tec squash shoes = £25. Cheapest fencing shoes I can find in my size = £70, also Hi-Tecs oddly enough). I say this because apparently fencing shoes, or the grips at least, wear out quite quickly and I appear to secrete shoe-killing levels of acid from my feet and I really cannot afford to replace them if they wear out as quickly as D's do, D being the other person I know with shoe-eating sweat. That being said, Hi-Tecs tend to be resistant to the terrible things I do to shoes and my most recent pair before this are now 3 years old.

~~~~

2 Questions:

1 - What newspaper do you think Tony Stark reads? Or at least, where do you think he'd get his info from?

Even in these days of online news, everyone has their go-to news source, mine's the BBC. So what do you think Iron Man's is?

This question is otherwise known as Red does not know enough about the US news media.

2 - When, in European history, did philosophy and theology become two different university subjects?

I mean, I can see the Greeks and the Romans having it under two completely different headings, but post-fall of Rome and whatnot, with the Church taking over as the main source of learning, did study of philosophy become a subject within theology or was it always separate?

Or, to put it another way, if I had a Danish princeling and his friend discussing what they were studying at university, and one said he was more interested in the theory behind thinking than anything else, would they both still be discussing the subject of theology?
redfiona99: (Thinking)
Once again for the North American cousinry

[livejournal.com profile] rise_your_dead said something about there being a thing about not linking back to the Guardian. And I know there's a thing about not linking back to the Mail (also known as the Hate Mail or the Daily Wail) and I would understand why people didn't want to link back to the Murdoch papers (The Times and the Sun) but I'm not sure what the Guardian, which is basically the granola-munching hippie paper, could have done that was that wrong.

Of course, no one has ever beaten Yes, Prime Minister's description of the British newspapers -

Hacker: Don't tell me about the press. I know exactly who reads the papers. The Daily Mirror is read by people who think they run the country; The Guardian is read by people who think they ought to run the country; The Times is read by the people who actually do run the country; the Daily Mail is read by the wives of the people who run the country; the Financial Times is read by people who own the country; the Morning Star is read by people who think the country ought to be run by another country, and the Daily Telegraph is read by people who think it is.

Sir Humphrey: Prime Minister, what about the people who read The Sun?

Bernard: Sun readers don't care who runs the country, as long as she's got big tits.
redfiona99: (Thinking)
Does anyone have any recommendations for books about faeries in Welsh mythology. I know my Mum has some books at home about Welsh mythology but I need background for something and I'm not sure those books cover it.
redfiona99: (Thinking)
So I'm writing an Alexander the Great modern day AU, and Alexander is about to appear driving a Ferrari. Now to me, it's obvious that I'm using a Ferrari to stand in for Bucephalas because the Ferrari symbol is a prancing horse. However, I am tifosi and I'm not sure how clear it is to someone who isn't into motorsports. Opinions are being canvassed.

~~~~

Fanfic Meme Day 8 – Do you write OCs? And if so, what do you do to make certain they're not Mary Sues, and if not, explain your thoughts on OCs.

It intrigues me that this meme only asks about OCs and Mary Sues but not about Gary Stus.

Yes, I write OCs, because often the fics I write require it. For instance, when the fic is set a long time after or before the canon, and I need someone from then to take part in the action for the plot. Other times, it's because the whole point of the fic is that the OC is not one of the regular characters in the canon. And on one occasion, because the BBC SFX budget is not up to providing me with active, octopodal characters.

One of the first fandoms I spent time in was X-Men Comics, and in that there is a whole genre of OC fic called "common people fic" and the whole point is that they characters are OC non-mutants who are affected by the main plot (or sometimes non-visible or non-fantastically-powered mutants). It's a fantastic genre if you like world-building and mutant politics, which are two of my favourite things, and I wonder if that has affected my view of things.

The fear of Mary Sues interests me because, if you take a background character, give them way more detail than canon gives it and put them centre stage, you're an inventive fanfic writer, yet if you create a female character whole-cloth and make her the centre of the action, you're doing something bad. I understand the whole "no-one is interested in your self-inserts but you" but the term Mary Sue has become so over- and misused through time that it's basically meaningless.

Other Days )
redfiona99: (Thinking)
The question is spoilery for Dark Knight Rises )

~~~~

The last two questions of the Shakespeare meme will have to wait, because I'm still making my way through the sonnets. It has meant I've read Venus and Adonis and the Rape of Lucrece. I liked the latter more, possibly because I always feel mildly awkward wanting to tell the Goddess of love that "he's just not into you".

~~~~

While finishing that off, I shall start the 30 days of fan-fiction meme. The version I'm using was pinched from [livejournal.com profile] angstbunny

Day 1 - How did you first get into writing fanfic, and what was the first fandom you wrote for? What do you think it was about that fandom that pulled you in?

I blame Blake's 7.

When it was being reshown on BBC2, I wanted to know more. At the time, the first google hit was http://www.hermit.org/blakes7/

On the website were some episode reviews. I think it was the reviews of Time Squad (that's definitely the first place I ever saw the word shipper - http://www.hermit.org/blakes7/Episodes/Reviews/timesquad.html). Possibly because Blake's 7 is an older fandom, there was already a distinct fan fiction presence and some either actually on the site, and definitely a link to them. So off I followed because I had to have more.

From there, having got the bug, I wandered over the fanfiction.net. And being bored, I had a quick click through to the wrestling section (this was many years ago) and the first fic I found was either by Bliss or Christine Ortega. Which was a stroke of luck because they wrote good fic.

I suspect the first fandom I ever wrote for was wrestling. Undoubtedly Kane fic. Because he was and is my favourite because he is wonderful.

I think the possibility is what drew me in. Canon can only do so many things, due to time and content constraints. Freed of those, fan fiction writers can do more.

Other Days )
redfiona99: (Thinking)
By which I mean Ohio, not the county in North East England.
redfiona99: (Thinking)
What's the long word for when someone says there are only two options in a situation when there are 150 other ones? I don't think it's false equivalence, although that's what he does with the two options later.
redfiona99: (Thinking)
Is there a US equivalent of the Women's Institute (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Women's_Institutes). In short, they're an association of village-based groups where ladies of a certain age (although they swear they're open to all ages) do voluntary work and keep themselves amused. I'm after something that would have been around in the 40s and 50s.
redfiona99: (Default)
Asking for a friend - Can anyone think of a book about 9/11 and its aftermath for a 15 year old which doesn't claim it was a massive conspiracy theory? Have a rather enquiring pupil. Thanks.
redfiona99: (Default)
Saw a Holmes I hadn't seen before (yes, yes, I have a problem), called "A Study In Terror" (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0059764/), with John Neville as Holmes and Donald Houston as Watson. Not particularly good, with the dialogue letting it down. It does however explain where Moffat/Gattis got the "Mummy" thing from. I knew it wasn't from the books, and quite often they've pinched things from films. Robert Morley played Mycroft in this and him vs Sherlock was brilliant in the film.

~~~~

Doctor Who

Unexpected guest star squee )

Moto GP

It's been a been a bit of a weepie weekend. I foolishly watched the San Marino Grand Prix, and, well I, like everyone else, miss Marco Simoncelli. And I'm so pleased for Gresini and Alvaro Bautista, and I know he won't get the ride next year but please Gresini Honda, please consider Alvaro.

On lighter matters, I seriously become convinced that Jorge Lorenzo is a Bond villain. In between Spies's bad luck, and Pedrosa's terrible luck, there's only been one winner. And Spies's luck is apparently catching, and poor Karel Abrahms caught it. Two bike failures, and the kind of failure that leaves brake fluid on your tyres at that. He looked so down-hearted afterwards.

Pedrosa has also had bad luck but his pre-dates Ben Spies's. Honda are going to go spare, because even if Hector Barbera had yet another crash, it was their fault that he was anywhere in the Barbera zone to begin with.

Valentino Rossi is adorable. But that doesn't really need to be said.

~~~~

Question - I need a US equivalent for "jury-rigged". Any suggestions? Or will jury-rigged do?

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