Not what I had planned for the day

Jul. 15th, 2017 09:45 pm
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
[personal profile] rmc28
I lost my house keys this evening, almost certainly while trying to help catch a loose dog in the local park. The dog is unharmed and reunited with his owners, who live nearby, but there was some terrifying running into a busy road first, and a bunch of talking to people after (including a long-overdue catchup with my neighbour).

Between that and my subsequent pacing around the park failing to find my keys, I am 50% over my target step count and extremely grumpy with tiredness.
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
[personal profile] rmc28
First of all, I accidentally bought the wrong shiny new phone outright, but that's ok, I'm being sent a returns envelope and I'm being refunded, and that's a lesson to double-check the version number before hitting buy.

Then I bought the right shiny new phone on contract from my current mobile SIM provider. I had it delivered to a local store, because it was that or my house, and slogged into town yesterday to collect it.  I was under the impression that the local store staff could sort out moving my number - this isn't a PAC situation because it's same-company to same-company.  But no! They were powerless! If I had come into the store to buy the thing in the first place they could have helped me, but because I bought in online I had to ring up the helpline to sort out my number.

So I did that this morning. But apparently because I have Not Done Things The Expected Way, the only way the person on the phone could resolve things is to have the phone company ship me another phone, and separately ship me a prepaid envelope to send back the other one -the one I have already spent ages setting up, naturally.  The idea that they could just update the records on the database on which they can see the details of both my contracts is just not possible, and there was a definite flavour of them graciously helping me out of my own mistake because it was clearly stated on the website that I had to go into a store to upgrade. 

(I checked this morning, and the relevant page does say "you can upgrade by going into a [brand] store" - in a page that has a bunch of other stuff on it, and in definitely smaller print than the big banners saying "get special deal on our shiny new phones".  Were it me, I'd change it to say "to upgrade, you must go into a store".)

I mean, I think I'm not going to be out any money due to my Not Doing It Properly, just some tedious admin.  But it's annoying and I'm frustrated both by the weddedness to Going Into A Shop, and by the idea it's somehow better to ship two phones back and forth than to update a database.

The phone is very shiny and lovely though, and I'm sure its twin will be just as good.

More movie notes

Jul. 12th, 2017 08:24 pm
sasha_feather: white woman in space suit (Astronaut)
[personal profile] sasha_feather
The Keepers - Netflix documentary, 7 episodes. 2017.

This was rough, but riveting and thought provoking. A detailed investigation into the murder of a nun in 1969, this series focuses largely on women who were her students in high school (so they are in their 60s now). There is a lot of discussion of sex abuse in the Catholic church, some discussion of possible police corruption (or at least egregious incompetence), and a strong sense of the social consequences of violence. Recommended if you like true crime stories and can handle the discussions of abuse.

Masterminds - on Netflix. 2016. comedy.

This is good if you are in the mood for a silly comedy with some gross-out humor, and which is not mean, and not violent. Zach Galifinakis plays Dave, an armored car driver who gets manipulated into doing a robbery and stealing 17 million dollars. Also stars Owen Wilson, Kristen Wiig, Leslie Jones, and Kate McKinnon. Content note: guns go off, but no one is shot.

Netflix and library viewings

Jul. 12th, 2017 04:04 pm
sasha_feather: horses grazing on a hill with thunderheads (horses and lightning)
[personal profile] sasha_feather
Source Code. 2011, 93 min.

LOVED this and not sure why I hadn't seen it before. A science fiction thriller by the director of "Moon". Air Force pilot Colter Stevens (Jake Gyllenhaal) wakes up on a communter train not knowing where he is or what is going on. A woman is talking to him and calling him "Sean". He goes to the restroom, looks in the mirror, and sees someone else's face. Some similar themes to "Moon" about how technology can be used to exploit people.

Okja. Netflix, 2017.

I didn't like this; it seemed like a message move whose message was garbled. It's a science fiction movie with poor world building and the script needed a few more edits. Okja is a "super pig" being raised by a teenage girl in the mountains of Korea. The project is run by a corporation trying to create and market new meat products that are supposedly beneficial for the environment. From the beginning it didn't make sense: why would a food animal take 10 years to mature? That would be way too expensive and is completely unrealistic. Do some research if you're going to write about meat production.
legionseagle: (Default)
[personal profile] legionseagle
Yesterday, what was a dull and muggy July was enlivened for many of us by the news of David Brook's sandwich gaffe spreading across the internet as the twinkling points of fire spread from Eddystone to Berwick bounds.

Brook decided to write an Opinion for the NYT under the headline How We Are Ruining America . Surprisingly, this didn't mention fracking, withdrawal from the Paris Climate Accords, electing Donald Trump, disbelieving in evolution and vaccination or deciding to take meetings with dodgy Russian lawyers promoted by even dodgier "music PR" people from Bury*. It didn't even touch on the US workplace culture as depicted in AAM, which goes more Hieronymous Bosch daily .

No: Brook has apparently just woken up and noticed:

Over the past generation, members of the college-educated class have become amazingly good at making sure their children retain their privileged status. They have also become devastatingly good at making sure the children of other classes have limited chances to join their ranks.


No shit, Sherlock. "Middle Classes Have Sharp Elbows And A Propensity For Drawing Up The Ladder Behind Them: News At Eleven."

Anyway, it appears that Brook was flabbergasted to realise this (why did he think Emily Post's works were bestsellers from the 1920s onwards, and that Judith Martin took on her mantle as "Miss Manners"?) and penned an opinion piece, which included this immortal paragraph:

Recently I took a friend with only a high school degree to lunch. Insensitively, I led her into a gourmet sandwich shop. Suddenly I saw her face freeze up as she was confronted with sandwiches named “Padrino” and “Pomodoro” and ingredients like soppressata, capicollo and a striata baguette. I quickly asked her if she wanted to go somewhere else and she anxiously nodded yes and we ate Mexican.


The phrase "Insensitively, I led her into a gourmet sandwich shop" has a rare beauty. It's like "I flicked my thong at him in a small, subtle, flirtatious gesture."

Fascinatingly, Brook had no hesitation in attributing his friend's horror to her class-based unease at the concept of Italian words applied to food, rather than her flabbergasted horror that somewhere, even in NYC, had the cheek to charge that for a tomato sandwich. Nor does it occur to him to do a quick translation for the benefit of his friend, along the lines of "That one's salami, that one's salami with slightly bigger bits of fat in it, that one's tomato, and that one's the house special." "Which is?" "Salami with tomato."

Anyway, Twitter reacted as one might expected, and various other upper middle class New Yorkers leapt athletically (it's all that yoga and Pilates) to his defence. Among them, my own particular favourite was Megan McArdle who came out with the classic


Holy assumptions about your audience, Batman!

Anyway, class in America. It's all about the Italian ham, apparently.

*Anyone wanting to know anything about Rob Goldstone, ask the M.E.N., apparently.

ETA And talking about the M.E.N, I was led serendipitously to this oldie but goodie Shock of Salford's 'bus pass matador' after £500k cannabis farm is discovered in the loft of his woodland mansion . I particularly liked the summary at the bottom of the article (which was mainly about the need for a "root and branch" approach to cannabis farming):
Frank has been flourishing his cape in the ring for around 50 years and is set to compete in Mijas and Seville in the coming weeks, despite turning 70 in 2012.

He retired with a dodgy knee at the age of 65 and has undergone a quadruple heart bypass operation, but made an unlikely return in 2009.

As well as fighting under the name of El Ingles - The Englishman - Frank was a winger with Sale rugby union club for eight years.

fandom...

Jul. 11th, 2017 05:38 pm
fufaraw: Magnus and Alec (Malec)
[personal profile] fufaraw
I have been a Supernatural fan since first season. I will be a Supernatural fan long after they turn out the lights and lock the door--there'll always be fic and art and discussion going on somewhere, and even if there isn't any new material, I will never read all the fic in my lifetime.

But. During the hiatus, I seem to have fallen headfirst down the Shadowhunters rabbit hole. I haven't felt this squeeful about a show since early-seasons SPN.

It's running on the former Disney family channel, Freeform, and if you have Instant Watch, the first season, plus all aired episodes of season two are available there. Plus I think there's an app or something.

ANYway. Pretty actors*, pretty sets, surprising emotionally deep storylines and relationships for a fantasy genre tv show on a lesser-known channel. Give it a try--what've you got to lose?

magnus with teacup




























































*case in point: the High Warlock of Brooklyn, Magnus Bane, is wonderfully played by Harry Shum, Jr. previously appearing as Mike Chang on Glee. (point: biceps!) The rest of the cast is gorgeous, as well. I'm smitten. I'm full and overflowing with smit.

Oh, and I forgot to mention that Lisa Berry, SPN's own Billie the Reaper, has a recurring role early in S2.

Consumerism

Jul. 11th, 2017 02:35 pm
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
[personal profile] rmc28
I am getting increasingly frustrated with my phone (a Fairphone One), which is about 3.5 years old now and frequently crashing, as well as physically a bit dodgy (because I am clumsy and drop it quite often).  My previous phone was an iPhone 4 which I also had for a bit over 3 years.

I was dithering about the options for a replacement (including going back to Apple rather than sticking with Android), and was thinking of posting a poll, and being systematic about the options.  But then I started reading reviews at Which? and decided a Galaxy A3 would work for me (at the top end of a size I can cope with holding, not horrifically expensive, should be a significant improvement over the current phone, available now) and bought one to be delivered to work tomorrow.

It's possible I am a satisficer rather than an optimiser. 

An impatient satisficer.
legionseagle: (Default)
[personal profile] legionseagle
Brought to you by the revelation that (in their eagerness to prove that "Corbynistas"are the devil incarnate)

(1) the LibDems are falling back on Reds Under the Beds




Shinydan Howell‏ @shinydan 5h5 hours ago

It's suspected that British PM ('64-'70, '74-'76) Harold Wilson was a Soviet asset. link


and

(2)the Tories, of course, are going "Hur, hur, if Anne-Marie Morris had only been in Labour and said the "K" word instead of the "N" word she'd have been in the Shadow Cabinet by now" (except that the one I saw spelled the relevant alternative slur out in full.)

On the whole, I'm more pissed off with the LibDems, on the grounds that one expects nothing less of the Tories. But telling me my entire family (parents, grandparents, great aunts and uncles) were either traitors or dupes really hurts. Especially since "It's suspected that" during the relevant decades one C.Smith MP was abusing kids in childrens' homes like blazes, and probably the key reason no-one stopped him was not so much that he knew where the bodies were buried, but that he knew where his party leader would have buried the body had he employed slightly more competent assassins.

12 years

Jul. 9th, 2017 08:23 pm
rmc28: (tony)
[personal profile] rmc28
We went out for lunch, all four of us, as a low-key celebration of:
  • my birthday (last week)
  • our wedding anniversary (today)
  • Nico's birthday (tomorrow)
The walk there and lunch were mostly pleasant, the walk home rather less so (too hot).

DVD Commentary: Tiber Father Tiber

Jul. 8th, 2017 03:49 pm
legionseagle: (Default)
[personal profile] legionseagle
DVD commentary for [personal profile] eileenlufkin on Tiber, Father Tiber

The title's from Macauley: When Horatius Kept The Bridge . I'm not sure why I chose it, apart from the general air of last-ditch heroism fits the wartime part of the Lopiverse.

The Lopiverse diverges significantly from HP canon, which was not closed at the time of writing. In the Lopiverse Draco and his mother joins the Allies after Narcissa (impliedly) murders Lucius, who has administered the "Death-in-Life" potion to Draco. My consistent head-canon is that Draco and Narcissa continue to be regarded with extreme suspicion by both sides thereafter, and that Draco is subject to considerable bullying during his time serving with the Allies, the effects of which are mitigated by Neville.

This is about someone expressly trying to bring down Draco, but also trying to drive a wedge between him and Neville (as a way of helping bring down Draco). Neville, though, has been a victim of bullying (frequently at Draco's hands, but, as he points out, far from exclusively) and it's given him a nose for when something smells off (notwithstanding his justifiable fury about being let down.)

Read more... )
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