Possibly twice, as I read later. But here's the initial touchdown:
I want to know who the woman with the specs and long dark hair is (with the core team). She looks so wonderfully fem-geekish.
I am so blessedly relieved about the presidential election. I think people finally got good and scared of the anti-women knee-jerk hateful Republican party (and fed up with all the voting shenanigans), as well they should have! It was scary close: apparently a lot of people can lie to themselves about a flagrant lying liar if he smiles pretty and invokes God.
I am also proud to bursting about my home state! Go, Maryland, go! Now so many of our friends and neighbors can get married: it's a new morning, and they can become the families they've always wanted to be. And they can do it in Minnesota and Maine and (maybe) Washington state, too. And Maryland's Dream Act law was passed, as well! \o/
The Occupy movement has set up a registry on Amazon for helping those displaced by Hurricane Sandy. It's full of things like disposable diapers, tools, and blankets. If you want to do something that feels more personal than donating to the Red Cross and aren't nearby enough to for hands-on, this may be a good option.
Another rainstorm, producing at least a couple of inches, is expected to hit that area tomorrow.
It's raining lightly, and the wind has picked up and is getting gusty.
U.S. Office of Personnel Management has spoken: federal government offices in the National Capital Area will be closed tomorrow. (Emergency/vital personnel must still report; those with existing telecommuting arrangements are expected to telecommute as usual, for as long as they are able.)
Most of the local school systems are going to shut down, either just for Monday or for both Monday and Tuesday.
It's been a bad couple of weeks to be a geek woman, what with the Readercon Creeper (see linkspam) and before that hit, the CNN article about how good-looking young women in skimpy costumes aren't really geeks (see Scalzi's blog, which has a link to the original piece).
Among the comments on the Scalzi "Who Gets to Be a Geek" piece was something that crystalized for me some uneasy feelings I'd been having myself about the recent co-evolution of geekdom in general and the women who are part of it. One commenter stated:
Speaking personally: I used to think that geek culture was one of the few places that I, as a non-femme fat chick, would find acceptance. It was exciting to know that I didn’t have to look like a bikini model in order to make friends and potentially find partners. Unfortunately, now that there really ARE bikini models running around in my spaces, I’m feeling more and more marginalized. My one refuge from my culture’s violent reinforcement of body standards is evaporating, and it’s upsetting.
I don't want to feel as this commenter does. But in my heart, I sometimes feel that way, even though I know it's wrong.( Cut for long navel-gazing stuffs ... definitely at the Teal Deer level )
I've been reading, over the past few days, Debbie Reese's posts on her blog American Indians in Children's Literature about the recent fiasco in Tucson. In response to the mandate from the state government that specialized programs like Mexican-American Studies no longer be taught, school officials demanded that books used in these classes be removed from classrooms. The removal was carried out during school hours - in one case, right before the eyes of the students as a class was taught. The teachers will have to jettison the rest of the year's lesson plans and come up with new ones - for general literature instead.
Also troubling is Arizona Superintendent for Public Instruction John Huppenthal's statement about what he saw and heard when he visited one of the classes in question. He was outraged by a poster of Che Guevara on the wall and says that the teacher called Benjamin Franklin racist. This is rather puzzling: when I took Russian history in high school in 1975, we had pictures of Stalin etc. on the wall, and no one flipped out. As for what the teacher said about Franklin that day ... a student video crew was filming, and the video is available online (link from the AICL blog).
Meanwhile, Indian Country Today supplied a link to this video, which shows another type of response:
You can check out the group's Website as well.
SOPA, PIPA lose support from lawmakers on Capitol Hill amid blackout
Co-sponsors who say they can no longer support their own legislation include Senators Marco Rubio, a Florida Republican, Roy Blunt, a Missouri Republican, and Ben Cardin, a Maryland Democrat ... .
Ben Cardin is one of my Congress-critters, and I wrote to him this morning! Yay! (Yes, I know that chances are he hasn't yet got to my message, and may never, but still - feels good, you know?)
On January 13, 1982, a plane crashed into the [14th Street Bridge in Washington, DC], killing all but four passengers and one flight attendant of the 79 people aboard the aircraft. Four motorists on the bridge also died in the accident. Pilot error and poor weather conditions were blamed ...
Rescue crews and ambulances struggled through traffic to reach the scene on that snowy afternoon. The federal government had released its employees early, and roads were jammed. Then came word about 30 minutes later that a crowded Orange Line train had slammed into a concrete pillar near the Smithsonian station.
The first fatal accident in the history of Metro would injure 25 passengers and kill three others.
I was about 18 months into my first full-time professional job that day, as a copy editor at the American Geophysical Union just north of Dupont Circle. AGU released its employees when the government did. My colleague Carole and I, who both lived in Arlington, Virginia, started home on the Metro. We could not make the transfer to the Orange line. Rumors flew around the crowded station platforms, and then the news about the plane crash started to get mixed into it. We bailed out of the crowded Metro station and walked to a nearby McDonalds for hot chocolate, and there the news started to come together. You must remember that almost no one had cellphones in 1982 and, even if they had, there were no online news services worth talking about. I think we may have eventually walked to Foggy Bottom, and picked up a train home from there.
My feelings about this are complicated. LJ is a business and also their personnel can be jerks about things. But LJ as a community has been a very important thing for me for the past several years, and to many people in Russia, it's the only public place where they can get a variety of truths other than the official line.
In any case, LJ seems to be partway up - I can now get it on all the browsers and platforms that I expect. And at the moment, it's certainly not any slower than poor DW, which is having its own issues.
A person named Keith Mander, who apparently has made most of his money by getting people to pay him for fluffing up their Google search positions by providing repetitive crud content, has bought a couple of fanfiction archives: LOTRFanfiction.com and a Twilight archive. He's talking out of both sides of his mouth, on the one hand claiming that he is going to improve the sites out of the goodness of his heart and on the other hand boasting about how he is going to make money from them.
The prospect of the arrival of lawyers from the Tolkien estate asking why he's making money off their clients' intellectual property apparently holds no dread for Mr. Mander.
There's more coverage on this from esteliel at Dreamwidth, and the Organization for Transformative Works is offering AO3 accounts and and import services for the authors whose work is posted at the two archives. The writers reportedly do not have the ability to cancel and scrub their accounts at these sites.
I know that there are certainly worse things happening in today's world, but this has still got me major-league ticked.
Apparently a couple of bozos at Fox think that Walgreens provides Pap smears and breast exams. Stephen Colbert tells it like it is:
(Thanks to fiction_theory for pointing this out.)
(And why doesn't LJ have a snarky moodicon, or a catty one?)
I know some folks were surprised that the distributed denial-of-service (DDOS) attacks that were dragging LJ down the tubes the past week or so are believed by many to be fallout from Russian politics.
(x-posted to my LJ; thanks to james_nicoll for pointing this out.)
News reports say mag. 7.4, USGS says 7.1 - off the coast in the same general area as the previous large quake.
NOAA's Pacific Tsunami Center says "BASED ON ALL AVAILABLE DATA A DESTRUCTIVE PACIFIC-WIDE TSUNAMI IS NOT EXPECTED AND THERE IS NO TSUNAMI THREAT TO HAWAII." However, a tsunami warning has been issued for Japan, according to a number of news sources.
Official reports say there was no additional damage to the messed up nuclear power plants.
"Fumi Yoshinaga’s Ooku: The Inner Chambers (volumes 1 & 2) explores an alternate version of feudal Japan, in which a plague has killed three out of every four boys. In this world, young men are protected and sheltered; women have secretly taken positions of authority and power. The Japanese ruler or shogun and the feudal lords are women and much of the story takes place among the men in the shogun’s harem. The title of the work refers to the living quarters for the shogun’s harem, contained within Edo Castle.
"The selection of Ooku: The Inner Chambers marks the first time that manga has been chosen for the Tiptree Award. Though no one on the jury is an expert on manga or on Japanese history, the jurors fell in love with the detailed exploration of the world of these books ... ."
Thanks to james_nicoll for pointing this out.
As usual, Mr. Smooth makes plain, clear common sense - which is all too uncommon in most places today:
My feeling on this? Polanski is to blame and shouldn't get off because there will always be young girls (and young boys, for that matter) who are taking their first steps toward a show business or modeling career, and there will always be sexual predators lying in wait for them. Those innocents deserve that this case continue to be handled as a crime, so that those predators will at least hesitate in their intent to indulge their lusts with young flesh. And perhaps some of them will even be dissuaded. As long as crimes like Polanski's are indulgently excused by well-known popular figures, such predators have little reason to hesitate.