redfiona99: (Default)
The minute Serena Williams announced that she was pregnant, various journalists dusted down their "is this the end of (famous sportswoman)'s career" articles.

This is annoying for a variety of reasons.

The first is that it really is always the same article, with just the name of the sportswoman and the sport changed.

The second is that, if Serena chooses to come back, it's not the end of her career. Sportswomen can, do and have achieved after having children. For instance, Olympic silver in the heptathlon, generally regarded as the most physically demanding of the athletics disciplines. Or you know, being the Flying Housewife.

But I suppose they don't play tennis. Like oh, Kim Clijsters, who won the US Open after giving birth, and she's not the physical force that Serena is.

Those are sport or related reasons. The remainder of the reasons are more society based.
The social construct of "the perfect mother" appears to exist only to make all mothers feel bad. (Any mothers reading this, you are amazing.) The perfect mother, she does not and cannot exist.

More than that, the extreme self-sacrifice that this ridiculous construct demands, that a mother no longer has her own life outside that of the identity of mother isn't safe or healthy for the mother, her children or any attendant partners.

Reporters and journalists are intelligent people and shouldn't be buying into it or propagating it.

There's also this weird idea that Serena (or any other woman) will be so overcome by the awesomeness of having a child that she will not be interested in pursuing her career. I don't have children, but my mother would like to tell you that this is nonsense. I have her permission to quote her.

The interesting double standard is that it's assumed that no man would be so distracted by having children that he'd want to stop his career. There's no "will Murray stop playing tennis now that there's a second mini Murray on the way?" articles. If kids are so all-consumingly awesome, you'd think both parents would be affected.

Every woman's choice is different, and it is her choice.

I realise journalists have to fill up the column inches so how to earn their pay. Maybe next time though write about a British (change nationality as applicable) junior that's doing good rather than digging out the old "is this the end of (famous sportswoman)'s career" article again.


Aug. 26th, 2014 09:53 pm
redfiona99: (Thinking)
Data Journalism Type Stuff:

Hacking the world’s most complex election system: part 1 -
I suspect this might be of interest to [ profile] nwhyte as it's about the Bosnian election system.

Seven Ways To Create A Storymap -


A map of every death on every road in Great Britain 1999-2010
Morbid but interesting.

Disability and the Japanese art of mastering chopsticks -

Artist attempts to create most frustrating products imaginable -

Some French Parkourists recreating Assassin's Creed around Paris -
Unfeasably awesome.

The man who helped save 50 million lives -
A brief history of the oral re-hydration therapy that saves millions.

Silicon: After the chip, another revolution? - Actually a history of the human uses of silicon.

Death By Cardio -

Ignore the title and the bit about cardio and read the bit about the frustrations scientists feel when they come up against pseudo-science. Never have truer words been written.


Rwandan teenagers cycling out of poverty -

What different methods have managers adopted to get their players up to speed for the new season? BBC Sport consulted five seasoned pros, past and present, to discover some of the more unorthodox ones, and also what constituted their 'nightmare' pre-season routine. -


Diva Dish With Celeste – How The Life Of A WWE Diva Is Truly The Definition Of Glamour -
As written by the diva formerly known as Kaitlyn, who writes well. Please can we keep her :)


Aug. 1st, 2014 09:14 pm
redfiona99: (Thinking)

How tall can a Lego tower get? - Touches on physics, engineering and material science.

5 Facts About Colors That Will Change How You See the World - It's a Cracked article so there's the usual title hyperbole, but it's interesting stuff.

Politics/Capital Punishment:

America's 'inexorably' botched executions -


5 Reasons Being a Male Porn Star Is Less Fun Than It Looks -

Lesser-known things about prosthetic legs -

Ask the Sexpert: The 90-year-old sex guru - His answers are wonderful.

Commonwealth Games/Culture:

Glasgow 2014: A quaich guide to the medallists' truly Scottish gifts -

Commonwealth Games:

Glasgow 2014: Taoriba Biniati makes boxing history for Kiribati -

Glasgow 2014: The novice cyclist looking to inspire a nation - The quote from Jeddie Amoako-Ackah at the end made me cry. "There's been a big burden on my shoulders but you should never be too frightened to take a risk. That's what makes us great. When I pulled on that skinsuit before my race, I felt so proud. I'm only just getting my feet wet and I may not turn out to be the best Ghanaian sprint cyclist ever. But I can pave the way for my fellow Ghanaians to be better than me."

Glasgow 2014: St Helena finally arrive at Commonwealth Games -

Glasgow 2014: Which is the strongest Commonwealth nation? - Or Nauru kicks everyone else's arses, per head of capita.

The story of the Pakistani lawn bowls team -


Tears, tantrums and titles: Les Chapman on 22 years at Man City - Really interesting stuff. Much like no man is a hero to his valet, no footballer is a superstar to the kitman.

Visualization of the goals in the 2014 FIFA World Cup (and other data visualisations) -

A look at national managers's salaries -

Olof Mellberg retires -;_ylt=Ap3xeEVFO7WNh0Wt6BNfG95YkcAF;_ylu=X3oDMTFkNTlzNm10BG1pdAMEcG9zAzIzBHNlYwNNZWRpYUdyYW5kU2xhbUVudGl0eU1peGVkTGlzdA--;_ylg=X3oDMTBhY2IwdWc5BGxhbmcDZW4tR0I-;_ylv=3 Or news only really interesting to me and [ profile] thedevilchicken but still.
redfiona99: (football)
Several months ago, I ranted about Sky Drama. I must now rant about BT Sports.

Basically, BT are trying to outmanouvre Sky Sports by paying way more than Sky can or will, therefore moving those sports off Sky and onto BT Vision.

The thing that gets me is that I'm supposed to be cheering this development. It's not as though I like the tentacles of Murdoch but having a competitor is doing nothing to drive costs down in this case, it just means sports fanatics are having to pay for BT Vision as well as Sky.

I wouldn't object too much but BT have kidnapped the MotoGP. While I know this season is going to be Marquez, Marquez, Marquez, I would at least like to see it. Especially as my beloved Espargaro boys are also getting some coverage. Due to DORNA going with BT Vision's offer, I am stuck with the ITV4 highlight, and they have the worst commentators.


Oct. 1st, 2012 04:56 pm
redfiona99: (Default)
Jaime Algesuari manages to explain the why of football supporting better than anyone else I've ever seen try - >>
You might wonder how I'm from Barcelona and ended up supporting the 'little' team, when Barcelona are much more successful.

I have big respect for Barcelona and all the players there. They are incredibly talented and it is probably the best football club in the world.

But my passion for Espanyol started because they were playing in the first football match I watched, with my dad. So they became my team.

I always felt very associated with them. They were always struggling for budget, fighting to succeed, to stay in the Primera Liga, and I just fell in love. That's how it is with football sometimes.<<

Full link -


No hard feelings after dog shoots huntsman in France -


Spanish swimmer Sebastian Rodriguez triumphs over dark past -


Richard III dig: How search reached Leicester car park -


An olympic summer, a cultural parade - A blog post by one of London2012's translators -


Aug. 23rd, 2012 03:27 pm
redfiona99: (Default)
Which I meant to put in the previous post.

Bitten handler Mark O'Shea 'forgives snake' -

More Scots ruling the world, at boccia this time -

Goths in Tashkent - Or nationalism fucks everyone over, again.

US teen invents advanced cancer test using Google - The awesome power of technology

Team GB cycling also continuing in their vein of awesome -
redfiona99: (Default)
Friends, Romans, people who live in countries that actually give numbers to humidity - what sort of humidity value is a native New Yorker going to complain about? I can elide, but I need to add words to this fic so I'm trying to hunt down details.

Actually, about that, if anyone has the time or inclination to beta a ~ 1000 word Mystique fic set after X-Men: First Class fic, I'd be grateful.



What were the Romans really like? Different from us in many ways, but there is much that is familiar in Roman family life and in particular parenting - I'm using the sub-headline because the main headline shows that whoever wrote the headline hadn't read the article.

London 2012: Why are world's athletes training in UK? - Money mostly, it turns out. Actually an interesting article, and remind me I have to e-mail some RL friends with it.

Paloma Faith pretending she's ever kept anything real -


Shakespeare Meme - Day #16: Your first play you saw

If we're talking ever, ever by any method, then Kenneth Branagh's Henry V on tape, which my Mum still has. Thankfully it's not worn out yet.

If we're talking on stage, then Macbeth at the Theatre Royal. Annoyingly I can't remember the company but it was ace. 6 actors, 2 techies (and I suspect that one of the techies was one of the actors) and the most fantastic amount of thought had gone in. Real atmosphere, and Macbeth's death was one of those moments where time seemed to stop, and we were in a medieval Scottish castle. It was brilliant.

Other Days )
redfiona99: (rl)
Sports-related things:
Grand National - Animal rights loonies* on twitter going 'you people betting on the National today, I bet your mothers are proud of you'. I did feel like replying, 'yes, and she's got a punt on too'. I'm not sure if the lady in question (judging by profile picture ~ late teens) is aware that mothers are people too.

* - There are criticisms to be made of horse racing. I believe that it needs to be made safer for horses. I think greater provision needs to be made for retired race horses. There is a difference between that and blind hatred.


Rugby League - Saints, despite their own better efforts, managed to beat Widnes in the Challenge Cup. They went from having a 22 - 40 lead with 10 minutes to go to winning 38-40. The main reason was a rush of blood to the head on James Roby's part but argh! I'm looking at the positives which are Lance Hohaia and two of the bambinos getting their first starts (Josh Jones and Adam Swift).


Formula 1 - While I might have wanted Schumacher to be the one to get new Mercedes's first pole, I am happy that it has been achieved. And Kobyashi in 3rd! It could be a fun grand prix.

More real life things

RL has become a bit of a panic-ridden ball of fear because it looks like I might be buying a flat. Culturally, I come from somewhere where you don't buy your flat. You move in, you complain about your rent, you move out. That's what I've always expected to do but apparently in Britain, things, and rents, are different.

Matters are not helped by the way my intrinstic reaction to stress to be 'run away'. This is more difficult when you have a mortgage.
redfiona99: (Default)
'Linsanity' hits Taiwan as Jeremy Lin conquers NBA - Which says some interesting things about statehood and culture.

Kurt Angle on trying to qualify for 2012 -

And a brief 'what the's argument about' re: the Falklands - I'll be good and not point out the correlation between the finding of oil and the increased tensions between Argentina and the UK.


Jan. 11th, 2012 10:09 am
redfiona99: (wrestling)
In other news that will amuse only a few people, TNA spoilers )

On to WWE, where what I have to say is not spoilery.

Mason Ryan needs to check his roots. It become readily apparent that if he isn't dyed to look like Batista v2, he would look like a bigger Heath Slater.

Why is Yoshi Tatsu not master of all that he surveys?

Not directly related, but one of the darts players comes out to HHH's music. Most bizarre sporting cross over ever (unless one of the figure skaters decides to skate to the Undertaker's entrance music).
redfiona99: (Default)
Dear May, really, really stop happening to sports people.
redfiona99: (Default)
Dear BBC, while obviously I understand that I am watching the English coverage, and therefore there will be a bias but more than occasional mentions of the other home nations would be nice. I mean, I've given up on hoping to hear about any events where the UK teams have no chance, but this is getting ridiculous.

Also, your attempts at blaming Delhi for the athletes being unwell is pitiful and verging on the nasty. If there really was something going round then everyone would have got it, not just Australia and the UK teams. I find it funny that even when both teams are under the weather, Australia still beat England most of the time.


Today's shared music is from Original Pirate Material by the Streets. I've chosen what I hope is a reasonably good overview of the Streets's stuff.

Warning, not safe for work, or those that disapprove of the use of illegal drugs.

Weak Become Heroes -
Let's Push Things Forward -

and one of my favourite pro-weed legalisation tracks -


And now day 23 of the much belated TV meme

Day 23 - Most Annoying TV Character

This was giving me a few problems, since it's very rare I dislike a character that I'm not supposed to dislike. If it was a question about that, Warren from Buffy still takes some beating. I am of the 'being flayed alive was too good for him' branch of Buffydom. Before anyone points out he didn't nearly cause an apocalypse, yes, but he was human, I expect better behaviour from them than from demons.

I didn't even mind those characters that seem to get it in the neck from fans like, for instance, Wesley.

But, as I was pondering this, an obvious answer presented itself to me. I mean there's only ever been one character who has ever put me off a show I have watched for most of my life.

My choice is the 10th Doctor.

This is not an attack against Russell T. Davies, whose work I love and adore, or David Tennant, who I'm certain is a good actor, but in combination, the two did not work.

Everyone has their own interpretation of who Dr. Who is, and that's a good thing. I just didn't like theirs. It's not that I even mind the Doctor when he's a bossy grump, given that my favourite Doctor is the 3rd, I can't. It's not that I mind when the Doctor is out and out obnoxious, hello number 6. It's that I mind when a character who has always been 'the rules are more like guidelines' when it comes to the laws of time and space come over all lawful stupid (and woe is me emo boy at the same time). I have no idea who that person is, but it's not the Doctor.

It started in 10's first series, where he leaves Ood to die, despite rescuing a human scientist. More than that, he didn't speak out against the slavery of the Oods when presented with it. The rest of his obnoxiousness was less bad than that, that's a pretty high watermark. Basically, by the time the year of specials rolled round, I wanted him dead already, something that wasn't helped by the Waters of Mars. So yes, so very pleased that I love 11 so much. He is a Doctor I can firmly get behind.

The Other Days )
redfiona99: (Default)
Although I swear the two are not linked ;)

Channel 5 appears to be showing UFC. No one told me of this so several people in RL who know that I like my fight-sports are totally sacked. Last night was UFC 91. So first UFC show I see features one Brock Lesnar, and, given the condition that you have to be in to fight UFC style, it's amazing that he was less muscled than during his WWE run. No, Vince, your company doesn't have a steroid problem at all.

I think I would have got more out of it if I'd know what the rule are, particularly in regards to open handed strikes.

So happy to see Brock win though.


TV meme: Day 20 - Favourite Kiss

There are any number of cases where kissing was accompanied by a shout of "finally" by yours truly (but I am in no way as bad as my housemates were regarding Will Schuester and Miss Pillsbury), but none of those have made it in.

My favourite is a toss-up between the kiss between Chiana and D'Argo in the Peacekeeper Wars Spoilers )

My other option is Stuart kissing Hazel in the first episode of the second "series" of Queer as Folk, because it's using a kiss to tell a story, and it's Stuart being Stuart and horribly blunt and deliberately cruel. And, of course, it's a totally non-romantic kiss, because I enjoy being an awkward blighter.

The Other Days )


Apr. 25th, 2010 09:52 pm
redfiona99: (cycling)
I went to the gym today, which was good.

Most importantly I managed to run 15 minutes straight, which doesn't sound like much, but when you're me, it's a big thing. I swear I'd be better at running if I got to hit things though. Also, as suspected, it's easier to keep running when there's sports on rather than when there's music on.

On to other sporting news, other than GB doing disturbingly well at the European Gymnastics, Vino won the Liege - Bastogne - Liege classic -

I would give any number of ridiculous things for him to win the Tour this year. Oh dear, sweet madman.


redfiona99: (Default)

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