Saturday, October 21st, 2017 05:18 pm
via http://ift.tt/2yxoFW3:

A post shared by Bridget Kelly (@bomberqueen17) on Oct 21, 2017 at 10:12am PDT

Reunited with my fuzzy darlings, now much less fuzzy and more feathery. Relatedly, I just read an article on how hobbyists treating chickens like pets has led to an increase in salmonella. For the record, I don’t kiss the chickens and I wash my hands after I pet them.
Today’s treat: hard boiled egg! If fed cooked eggs, chickens don’t develop a taste for eggs– but never feed them raw eggs, says conventional wisdom.
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Saturday, October 21st, 2017 09:00 am

Posted by rbarenblat@gmail.com (Velveteen Rabbi)

 

Noahs-ark-blueChodesh tov: a good and sweet new month to you!

Today we enter the month of Cheshvan, a month that is unique because it contains no Jewish holidays at all. (Except for Shabbat, of course.) After the spiritual marathon of Tisha b'Av and Elul and the Days of Awe and Sukkot and Hoshana Rabbah and Shemini Atzeret and Simchat Torah, now we get some downtime. Some quiet time. Time to rest: in Hebrew, לנוח / lanuach. We've done all of our spiritual work, and now we get to take a break. Right?

Well, not exactly.

When we finish the Days of Awe, we might imagine that the work is over. But I want to posit that the work of teshuvah, of turning ourselves in the right direction, isn't something we ever "complete"... and that Torah's been giving us hints about that, if we know where to look.

Last week we began the Torah again, with Bereshit, the first portion in the book of Genesis. The creation of the cosmos, "and God saw that it was good," the forming of an earthling from earth. Last week's Torah portion also contains the story of Cain and Hevel, the first sibling rivalry in our story. The two bring offerings to God. Hevel brings sheep, and Cain brings fruits of the soil, and God is pleased with the sheep but not with Cain's offering. Cain's face falls, and God says to him, "Why are you distressed?"

It's an odd moment. Surely an all-knowing God understands perfectly well why Cain is upset. This is not rocket science. Two brothers make gifts for their Parent, who admires one gift and pointedly ignores the other one?! Of course Cain feels unappreciated. This is basic human nature. How can it be that God doesn't understand?

The commentator known as the Radak says: God asked this rhetorical question not because God didn't understand Cain's emotions, but because God wanted to spur Cain to self-reflection. God, says the Radak, wanted to teach Cain how to do the work of teshuvah, repentance and return. Imagine if Cain had been able to receive that lesson. Imagine if Cain had had a trusted rabbi or spiritual director with whom he could have done his inner work, seeking to find the presence of God even in his disappointment. But that's not how the story goes. He misses the opportunity for teshuvah, and commits the first murder instead.

That was last week. This week, we read that God sees that humanity is wicked, and God decides to wipe out humanity and start over. But one person finds favor with God: Noach, whose name comes from that root לנוח, "to rest."

And God tells Noah: make yourself an ark out of gopher wood, and cover it over with pitch: "וְכָֽפַרְתָּ֥ אֹתָ֛הּ מִבַּ֥יִת וּמִח֖וּץ בַּכֹּֽפֶר / v'kafarta otah mibeit u-michutz bakofer." Interesting thing about the words "cover" and "pitch:" they share a root with כפרה / kapparah, atonement. (As in Yom Kippur.) It doesn't come through in translation, but the Hebrew reveals that this instruction to build a boat seems to be also implicitly saying something about atonement.

Rashi seizes on that. Why, he asks, did God choose to save Noah by asking him to build an ark? And he answers: because over the 120 years it would take to build the ark, people would stop and say, "What are you doing and why are you doing it?" And Noah would be in a position to tell them that God intended to wipe out humanity for our wickedness. Then the people would make teshuvah, and then the Flood wouldn't have to happen. God wanted humanity to make teshuvah, and once again, we missed the message.

The invitation to make teshuvah is always open. The invitation to discernment, to inner work, to recognizing our patterns and changing them, is always open. And to underscore that message, last week's Torah portion and this week's Torah portion both remind us:  the path of teshuvah was open to Cain, and it was open for the people of Noah's day, and it's open now.

Even if we spent the High Holiday season making teshuvah with all our might, the work isn't complete. We made the teshuvah we were able to make: we pushed ourselves as far as we could to become the better selves we know we're always called to be. But that was so last week. What teshuvah do we need to make now, building on the work we did before?

The word kapparah (atonement) implies covering-over, as Noach covered-over the ark with the covering of pitch. What kapparah hasn't worked for you yet? Where are the places where you still feel as though your mis-steps are exposed? What are the tender places in your heart and soul that need to be lovingly sealed and made safe? This week's Torah portion comes to remind us that we still have a chance to do this work. Will we be wiser than the generation of Noah? Will we hear Torah's call to make teshuvah now with all that we are?

Here's the thing: as long as we live, our work isn't done. I don't know whether that sounds to you like a blessing or a curse. But I mean it as a blessing. Because it's never too late. Because we can always be growing. Because we can always choose to be better.

May this Shabbat Noach be a Shabbat of real menuchah, which is Noah's namesake, and peace, a foretaste of the world to come. And when we emerge into the new week tonight at havdalah, may we be strengthened in our readiness to always be doing the work of teshuvah, and through that work, may our hearts and souls find the kapparah that we most seek.

 

I'm honored and delighted this week to be at Kol HaNeshama in Sarasota, Florida, visiting my dear friend Rabbi Jennifer Singer who blogs at SRQ Jew. This is the d'var Torah I offered there for Shabbat Noach -- which I share with deep gratitude to Rabbi David Markus for sparking these insights.

 

Saturday, October 21st, 2017 12:56 pm
In the interest of Being Excellent and considerate of those who plan to watch this episode, all references to the content of this episode are stashed under the cut and will remain so hidden for at least a month. Someponies like to watch MLP:FIM in herds and it can be a while before they get all their ponies together. 8^) As spoilers are also likely to be in any comments: don't read if you haven't yet seen the episode unless you like being spoiled. When you're ready, drop in a comment and say what you thought of this episode!

After a month, I hope Episode Discuss posts will be so far off the top page that it'll probably take the tag to find them, so about a month after posting the cut will be removed. 8^) Sometimes I go back and drop in little extras into the posts, like comics and links to the music.

This episode was leaked, then broadcast last Sunday in Canada on Treehouse and has now been broadcast at the usual time in the US on Discovery Family.

Written by .

For those of you following Twitter, you can follow writers Nick Confalone (Hearthbreakers), Mike and Will Fox (The Gift of the Maud Pie), Joanna and Kristine (Gauntlet of Fire), Dave Polsky (Rarity Takes Manehattan) and Jennifer Skelly (Buckball Season). Other twits in the early morning chorus may include the likes of Meghan McCarthy, Jayson Thiessen (Supervising Director of MLP:FIM), Andrea Libman , the voice of Dragon Lord Ember Ali Milner, Big Jim (storyboard work, voice of Troubleshoes and Director of MLP:FIM), Mike Vogel and Josh Haber. The hashtag to watch should be #MLPseason7.

Review for episode 24, Uncommon Bond, below the cut. )


Catch the show and throw in your two bits in the comments! Copy/paste your reviews into the comments, spread the wealth!

Watch Uncommon Bond on DailyMotion over here.

Download links for Uncommon Bond: (I'll fill in the blanks as soon as I find them)
As seen on Discovery Family in 1080p: a href="">broadcast version.
In 1080p without logos: a href="">logoless.
In 1080p, without logos and colour corrected: a href="">colourful.
They're all mkv format files.

Read all the transcripts, including that of Uncommon Bond over here on the MLP wiki of transcripts.

Clear, free, logoless screengrabs from the entire episode get uploaded to the episode wiki within days of broadcast on the MLP Wikia Gallery pages, here.

The links to official channels and purchasing DVD's and episodes are now in the community sticky.
Saturday, October 21st, 2017 04:25 pm

Posted by Marykate Jasper

As the Harvey Weinstein allegations continue to reverberate in the entertainment industry, more than 200 women and gender non-conforming animators sent an open letter to the animation community at-large, in which they laid out their demands to address sexual harassment and assault in the industry. They ask for “clear and enforceable” sexual harassment policies at every studio, an update to the Animation Guild constitution which would allow the Guild to “censure, fine, suspend or expel” members, and a cultural change that “male colleagues start speaking up and standing up for us.”

“When sexual predators are caught at one workplace, they seem to easily find a job at another studio, sometimes even following their victims from job to job,” the letter reads. “We are tired of relying on whisper networks to know who isn’t safe to meet with alone. We want our supervisors to protect us from harassment and assault.”

As many commentators have pointed out, it’s important and often healing for women to share their stories and name their abusers. But it’s just as important for us to respond to those stories with concrete, system-wide changes which make it far more difficult for harassers to get away with their behavior. This letter calls for exactly that sort of change – so let’s hope the studios respond. Bento Box, Cartoon Network, Disney, DreamWorks Animation, Nickelodeon, OddBot, Paramount, Shadowmachine, Sony Pictures Animation, Stoopid Buddy, Titmouse, and Warner Brothers were all sent the letter.

The signatories of the letter include animators from dozens of shows, including Adventure Time and Bojack Horseman, as well as big-name creators like Steven Universe creator Rebecca Sugar, Danger & Eggs creator Shadi Petosky, Bob’s Burgers producer/writer Wendy Molyneux, and My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic creator Lauren Faust.

Below is the full text of the letter. You can see the full list of signatories at Deadline.

— — —

“An Open Letter to the Animation Community

We, the women and gender non-conforming people of the animation community, would like to address and highlight the pervasive problem of sexism and sexual harassment in our business. We write this letter with the hope that change is possible, and ask that you listen to our stories and then make every effort to bring a real and lasting change to the culture of animation studios.

In the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, many of the women who work in animation have begun discussing more openly issues that we have dealt with quietly throughout our careers. As we came together to share our stories of sexism, sexual harassment and, in some cases, sexual assault, we were struck by the pervasiveness of the problem. Every one of us has a story to share, from tossed-off comments about our body parts that were framed as “jokes” to women being cornered in dark rooms by male colleagues to criminal assault.

Our business has always been male-dominated. Women make up only 23% of union employees, so it’s no surprise that problems with sexism and sexual harassment exist. Sexual harassment and assault are widespread issues that primarily affect women, with women of color, members of the LGBTQ+ community and other marginalized groups affected at an even greater rate.

As more women have entered the animation workforce, it seems that some men have not embraced this change. They still frequently make crass sexual remarks that make it clear women are not welcome on their crews. Some have pressed colleagues for romantic or sexual relationships, despite our clear disinterest. And some have seen the entrance of more women into the industry as an opportunity to exploit and victimize younger workers on their crews who are looking for mentorship. In addition, when sexual predators are caught at one workplace, they seem to easily find a job at another studio, sometimes even following their victims from job to job. We are tired of relying on whisper networks to know who isn’t safe to meet with alone. We want our supervisors to protect us from harassment and assault.

This abuse has got to stop.

The signatories of this letter demand that you take sexual harassment seriously. We ask that:

1. Every studio puts in place clear and enforceable sexual harassment policies and takes every report seriously. It must be clear to studio leadership, including producers, that, no matter who the abuser is, they must investigate every report or face consequences themselves.

2. The Animation Guild add language in our constitution that states that it can “censure, fine, suspend or expel any member of the guild who shall, in the opinion of the Executive Board, be found guilty of any act, omission, or conduct which is prejudicial to the welfare of the guild.” To craft and support the new language, we ask that an Anti-Harassment and Discrimination Committee be created to help educate and prevent future occurrences.

3. Our male colleagues start speaking up and standing up for us. When their co-workers make sexist remarks, or when they see sexual harassment happening, we expect them to say something. Stop making excuses for bad behavior in your friends and co-workers, and tell them what they are doing is wrong.

It has not been easy for us to share our stories with each other. Many of us were afraid because our victimizers are powerful or well-liked. Others were worried that if they came forward it would affect their careers. Some of us have come forward in the past, only to have our concerns brushed aside, or for our supervisors to tell us “he’s just from a different era.” All of us are saddened and disheartened to hear how widespread the problem of sexual harassment still is in the animation industry, and how many of our friends had been suffering in secret.

It is with this in mind that we resolve to do everything we can to prevent anyone else from being victimized. We are united in our mission to wipe out sexual harassment in the animation industry, and we will no longer be silent.”

(Via Buzzfeed News and Deadline; image via Cartoon Network)

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Saturday, October 21st, 2017 05:00 pm

As I read Facebook this breezy Saturday morning, I kept running into posts from my conservative friends that so, so, so made me want to respond. But were I to respond on their forums, I know what would happen: arguments, with no changing of minds. So instead, they become essay prompts on my forum:

 📖🖋️📖 Prompt #1: Privilege 📖🖋️📖

One friend of mine shared the following, ostensibly from “American News”:

“PRIVILEGE is what Stupid People call the CONSEQUENCE of other people WORKING HARDER and MAKING BETTER CHOICES than them” — Kurt Schlichter.

If you’re not familiar with Schlichter, he is a conservative columnist recruited by Breitbart, which says quite a bit.

So where do I start with this statement? First, I’ll note the “Stupid” part. There are so many of these memes that bully and call people names, and the folks posting them think it is funny. It’s a mindset that is just wrong in this day and age, but bullying is often perceived to be the answer if you can’t make a real argument and convince people with facts. In fact, following this post, this person posted another meme that said, “If you need an answer, just find yourself a drink, sit back, and post the wrong answer on Facebook. Some asshole will correct you.”. Well, I’m just that asshole — and remember that without your asshole, you’d be even fuller of shit.

But I digress. Let’s get to this assertion that privilege is really just people working harder and making better choices? Is that true?

I did a quick search to find some examples of White Privilege and Male Privilege (as those are the usual privileges of concern). Let’s see if this statement is true.

The following is from “Everyday Feminism”: 10 Examples of White Privilege:

  1. I Have the Privilege of (Generally) Having a Positive Relationship with the Police. So, white people being treated differently than black people by law enforcement. Walking through an affluent neighborhood: the scruffy black guy gets harassed more than the white guy. The whole “driving while black”. The whole issue of who goes to jail more, and who gets guns drawn at them more, and who get longer sentences. Is this just that the white folks worked harder and made better choices? Nah. Not when there are instances of well educated black people being hassled, and poor white folks being ignored. Working harder and making choices doesn’t help.
  2. I Have the Privilege of Being Favored by School Authorities. Here minority students are more likely to get suspended for offenses that for white students get a warning. Islamic students bringing in science projects that are viewed as terrorism; the same project from white folks getting a pass. Is that “working harder and making better choices”. Things being equal? Nope.
  3. I Have the Privilege of Attending Segregated Schools of Affluence. This is a lot of economic privilege, which could be viewed as parents making better choices — or growing up in an environment where white folks get better jobs and higher paying jobs. But certainly white segregated schools have greater resources than black segregated school. That’s not the product of the students working harder or making better choices.
  4. I Have the Privilege of Learning about My Race in School. History courses in America typically teach the White Christian view of history. Except for perhaps one week, the contributions of minorities are not discussed. How is what we teach an example of working harder and making better choices?
  5. I Have the Privilege of Finding Children’s Books that Overwhelmingly Represent My Race. Take a look at school books and much of popular literature. What is the color of the people in the stories? Look at our media, and the complexion of broadcast TV? How is this an example of working harder and making better choices?
  6. I Have the Privilege of Soaking in Media Blatantly Biased Toward My Race. I addressed this in the last item, but our media is predominately white. There is nothing about working harder and making better choices here. Even if you were to somehow argue that for news anchors, it doesn’t explain why scripted drama doesn’t reflect the complexion of the country. Further, think about this: look at the crime drama you see. What is the typical complexion of the criminal, and what is the complexion of law enforcement? Working harder and making better choices?
  7. I Have the Privilege of Escaping Violent Stereotypes Associated with My Race. Simple question: What makes you more nervous? A black guy with a visible gun or a white guy with a visible gun? How is your reaction “working harder and making better choices”? Same thing for the middle eastern guy buying the fertilizer and nails at the hardware store, vs. the white guy buying the same.
  8. I Have the Privilege of Playing the Colorblind Card, Wiping the Slate Clean of Centuries of Racism. This is attempting to ignore racism by not seeing color. In fact, the statement we’re examining is an attempt to be colorblind — to argue the issue isn’t racism, but something else. How is the ability to attempt to do that “working harder and making better choices”?
  9. I Have the Privilege of Being Insulated from the Daily Toll of Racism. Every day, minorities suffer little indignities: the nervous look, the lower pay, and so forth. How is that “working harder and making better choices”?
  10. I Have the Privilege of Living Ignorant of the Dire State of Racism Today. As a white person, you can easily go through your life not worrying about being hassled by law enforcement, confident that you can get in a door for an interview, that you’ll have the ability to get a loan and go to a college of your choice. All this because you’re the majority skin color, not because you work harder or make better choices.

When we look at male privilege, we can easily see differences. How does “working harder and make better choices” influence the fact that it costs more to dry-clean a woman’s shirt than a man’s shirt. That a woman doing the same job with the same education gets paid less. That opinions from a woman of equal training and knowledge to a man get discounted?

Privilege is not the result of working harder and making better choices. Privilege is having an easier life for no reason other than your pigment or gender.

 📖🖋️📖 Prompt #2: Racism 📖🖋️📖 

In the last day or two, I saw two statements that invoked the same reaction. Both were in response to pictures of the congresswoman who had been with the war widow when the President called. One shared a quote from @RealJamesWoods that said: “When #Democrats start wheeling out clowns dressed as saloon hookers, they are trying desperately to swerve away from the news.” The other said “How anyone takes seriously a person wearing a plastic cowboy hat is beyond me…”

As Steve Martin once said, “Excuuuuse me.”

Since when did we start judging the value of a person based on what they look like or what they are wearing?

Isn’t that just racism dressed up? Isn’t that just sexism? I judge Donald Trump as stupid not because of his ill fitting suits, how he looks on the golf course, his odd hair, or his ill-fitting tie. I judge him based on what he says or does.

Disagree with this congresswomen based on what she said, fine (even though her story has been verified). But don’t go down the path of discounting her because she wears a stupid hat. Hell, you’d need to write off most of Texas if you were going to do that.

 

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Saturday, October 21st, 2017 04:52 pm

Posted by Anna Clutterbuck-Cook

This year (2017) marked the tenth anniversary of my entry into the library science / archives field as a graduate student and worker. It also coincided with the end of my three-year term as Inclusion and Diversity Coordinator for our regional professional association, New England Archivists, and the inception of the loose affiliation of resistance archivists we have come to call the Concerned Archivists Alliance.

While I have neither the opportunity nor inclination to return to formal graduate study, I have decided to make 2018 a year of study and reflection as I think about the core values that inform my work as a librarian through the lens of scholarly and activist literatures that critically consider how library and archival spaces are shaping and shaped by social (in)justice.

I am grateful, as I prepare to undertake this year of work, that many scholars have made syllabi and other tools for this exploration readily available to those outside the academy.

My core resources will be:

#critlib readings and discussion.

Design for Diversity’s Foundational Readings and ongoing engagement with their work.

Adrienne Keene’s Introduction to Critical Race Theory syllabus (Fall 2017).

Laura Saunders‘ Radical Librarianship: Radical Theory & Praxis syllabus (Spring 2016).

In addition, this post will become a living bibliography of the additional books, articles, and online resources that have informed this critical reflection already (*) or that are on my “to read” list for 2018:

*Adler, Melissa. Cruising in the Library: Perversities in the Organization of Knowledge (Fordham, 2017).

Ahmed, Sara. Living a Feminist Life (Duke Univ. Press, 2017).

*Ahmed, Sara. On Being Included: Racism and Diversity in Institutional Life (Duke Univ. Press, 2012).

Drake, Jarrett M. “I’m Leaving the Archival Profession: It’s Better This Way” (Medium, 26 June 2017).

*Hathcock, April. “White Librarianship in Blackface: Diversity Initiatives in LIS” (7 October 2015).

Lankes, R. David. The New Librarianship Field Guide (MIT Press, 2016).

Mehra, Bharat and Kevin Rioux, eds. Progressive Community Action: Critical Theory and Social Justice in Library and Information Science (Library Juice Press, 2016).

Schlesselman-Tarango, Gina, ed. Topographies of Whiteness: Mapping Whiteness in Library and Information Science (Library Juice Press, 2017).

*Shirazi, Roxanne. “Reproducing the Academy: Librarians and the Question of Service in the Digital Humanities” (15 July 2014).

Tyson, Amy.  The Wages of History: Emotional Labor on Public History’s Front Lines (Univ. of Mass. Press, 2013).


Filed under: library life, my historian hat, Uncategorized
Saturday, October 21st, 2017 07:46 pm
Things I go when I don't have anything better to do: take stats of my works hosted on the AO3.

The way I do it is list the Top 10 across hits, kudos, bookmarks and comment threads; score each work by how high it placed; then adjust the score to how many Top 10s each work got on.

My current Top 10, first to last, are:

1. The Woods. 2017, Shadowhunters, Alec/Magnus. Alec accepts Magnus’s first-stated price for defending Izzy. Consequences follow.
2. Take Seven. 2010, Criminal Minds, gen. Character-driven drabble-based short fiction, if such a thing exist. And yes, you will need that insulin.
3. Salt. 2012-2013, co-authored, NCIA LA + Power Rangers Ninja Storm, gen. Because getting a new agent is not annoying enough, she turns out to be a supernatural ninja.
4. A Goat for Azazel. 2012, co-authored, NCIS, gen. Goes AU after Aliyah. When Tony disappears two days before the Saleem op is a go, the team scrambles to find him - and to understand what an associate of La Grenouille and Israeli domestic intelligence have to do with it.
5. Friends Like These. 2012, co-authored, MCU + NCIS LA + Power Rangers (too many to count), gen w/background relationships. Why Jarvis is not allowed to make friends on the internet: In which the Power Rangers show up to help in the Battle of Manhattan.
6. The fate you carved on me. 2014, for exchange (pinch hit), Power Rangers Samurai + Ninja Storm, gen. "And I thought my team was bad. I thought Casey was bad. But then there is you guys. And, of course, you just had to be Samurai. You realize I am never going to hear the end of it.”
7. Five Times Alex Kissed Nikita. 2011, for exchange (pinch hit), Nikita (CW), Alex/Nikita. Five times Alex kissed Nikita (or tried to), pre-series.
8. The Sameen Shaw Handbook. 2014, co-authored, Person of Interest, meta. A collection of Sameen Shaw essays, inc.: exhaustive timeline; 101 intro to the US Marines, Intel and the world of Covert Ops; and an exploration of dissocial personality.
9. What Olivia Did and Didn't Do on Her Summer Vacation. 2014, for exchange (pinch hit), Leverage, gen. They're either the best or the worst babysitting service on the planet. So long as Olivia's in one piece and swearing she wasn't made to do anything illegal, Jim chooses to believe the former.
10. All the Time In the World. 2011, remix, Criminal Minds, gen. Emily is dead, but that doesn't mean she's gone.

Things I'm particularly happy about:

* Oh my god T7 is no longer the unquestioned leader! That series has been sitting top of my stats at a huge margin from everything else - that has only been growing - since it was published. It's not that I don't love it, it's not that I'm not proud of having written a fandom classic, but oh my god seriously.
* There is a non-crossover PR work on here! Look, excepting the latest movie, PR is a small fandom, okay? A small fandom that's hard-pressed to generate the sort of traffic that can give a fair fight to the mostly-larger other fandoms I create in.
* One of my meta works made the Top 10! And the Handbook is particularly awesome; it's really nice to see how popular it is.

Otherwise, I'm terribly amused that all the exchange pieces that made it to the Top 10 are from my pinch hits. It's very consistent, which is what makes it funny.
Tags:
Saturday, October 21st, 2017 04:39 pm
via http://ift.tt/2gt8gaj:Destroy Oil Pipelines as a Thunderbird in this New Video Game:

paddysnuffles:

baapi-makwa:

In Thunderbird Strike, a new side-scrolling game that launches at the ImagineNATIVEfestival this week in Toronto, players can control a thunderbird—a symbol in several Indigenous cultures—that destroys as much of the oil industry’s machinery and pipelines as it possibly can. And it’s so satisfying.

The game was created by Elizabeth LaPensée, an Anishinaabe, Métis, and Irish games developer, and assistant professor of media and information at Michigan State University. She told me in an interview that she wanted to create a game where Indigenous players could reclaim some agency around oil pipelines, even if through a video game.

“Especially when we’re talking in the context of pipelines, and the oil industry, there are some wins we can have. But ultimately protectors will be pushed out and the processes are going to move forward. It’s happening with mining and it’s happening with pipelines,” LaPensée told me over the phone.

aw yiiiis

@allthecanadianpolitics, have you seen this?
Saturday, October 21st, 2017 05:14 pm
which I have been hiding from for nearly a year owing to its close temporal (and partially causal) association with my major mood dip at the start of the year.

Because I am in no way MASSIVELY AVOIDANT or anything, no why would you think that.

I will accept praise and validation.
Saturday, October 21st, 2017 03:59 pm
via http://ift.tt/2gWAlYt:
diversitybooks:

FAVORITE YA SCI-FI/FANTASY READ IN 2017…

Flame in the Mist by Renee Ahdieh

The daughter of a prominent samurai, Mariko has long known her place—she may be an accomplished alchemist, whose cunning rivals that of her brother Kenshin, but because she is not a boy, her future has always been out of her hands.

Theonite by M. L. Wang

Joan Messi has spent thirteen lonely years hiding her supernatural abilities from her parents, her classmates, and everyone in her white bread suburban community. However, her little world of secrets is shattered when a pair of strangers arrive from a parallel dimension on the hunt for a nameless criminal. Now, after a lifetime of wondering where her powers came from, Joan might have found the beginnings of an answer.

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

A convict with a thirst for revenge. A sharpshooter who can’t walk away from a wager. A runaway with a privileged past. A spy known as the Wraith. A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums. A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes. Six dangerous outcasts. One impossible heist. Kaz’s crew is the only thing that might stand between the world and destruction—if they don’t kill each other first.

The Library of Fates by Aditi Khorana

No one is entirely certain what brings the Emperor Sikander to Shalingar. Until now, the idyllic kingdom has been immune to his many violent conquests. To keep the visit friendly, Princess Amrita has offered herself as his bride, sacrificing everything—family, her childhood love, and her freedom—to save her people. But her offer isn’t enough. 

Binti by Nnedi Okorafor

Her name is Binti, and she is the first of the Himba people ever to be offered a place at Oomza University, the finest institution of higher learning in the galaxy. But to accept the offer will mean giving up her place in her family to travel between the stars among strangers who do not share her ways or respect her customs.

An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

Laia is a slave. Elias is a soldier. Neither is free. Under the Martial Empire, defiance is met with death. Those who do not vow their blood and bodies to the Emperor risk the execution of their loved ones and the destruction of all they hold dear. It is in this brutal world, inspired by ancient Rome, that Laia lives with her grandparents and older brother. The family ekes out an existence in the Empire’s impoverished backstreets. They do not challenge the Empire. They’ve seen what happens to those who do.

Akata Witch by Nnedi Okorafor

Twelve-year-old Sunny lives in Nigeria, but she was born American. Her features are African, but she’s albino. She’s a terrific athlete, but can’t go out into the sun to play soccer. There seems to be no place where she fits in. And then she discovers something amazing—she is a “free agent” with latent magical power. Soon she’s part of a quartet of magic students, studying the visible and invisible, learning to change reality. But will it be enough to help them when they are asked to catch a career criminal who knows magic too?

Sea of Ink and Gold by Traci Chee

Sefia knows what it means to survive. After her father is brutally murdered, she flees into the wilderness with her aunt Nin, who teaches her to hunt, track, and steal. But when Nin is kidnapped, leaving Sefia completely alone, none of her survival skills can help her discover where Nin’s been taken, or if she’s even alive. The only clue to both her aunt’s disappearance and her father’s murder is the odd rectangular object her father left behind, an object she comes to realize is a book—a marvelous item unheard of in her otherwise illiterate society.

The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh

Every dawn brings horror to a different family in a land ruled by a killer. Khalid, the eighteen-year-old Caliph of Khorasan, takes a new bride each night only to have her executed at sunrise. So it is a suspicious surprise when sixteen-year-old Shahrzad volunteers to marry Khalid. But she does so with a clever plan to stay alive and exact revenge on the Caliph for the murder of her best friend and countless other girls.
Saturday, October 21st, 2017 02:55 pm

Posted by Marykate Jasper

Irony has taken many blows in the marketing for Lionsgate’s adaptation of The Hunger Games, Suzanne Collins’ young adult trilogy about a society which transforms suffering and death into reality-show entertainment – but this one might be the death blow. Variety announced that Lionsgate has partnered with Dubai Parks and Resorts to open “The World of The Hunger Games” theme park.

The opening celebration for the park was held this Friday, October 20. “The World of The Hunger Games” will be the largest Hollywood-inspired theme park in the Middle East, with attractions like the Panem Aerial Tour hovercraft simulator, the Capitol Bullet Train rollercoaster, and the – I kid you not – Coal Miner’s Clash “festive, high-energy percussion show.” Guests can also shop at Peeta’s Bakery for food and Panem Supply Co. for merchandise.

Below is the promotional video for the park, shared by Dubai Parks and Resorts on YouTube. (And yes, it does look like Stanley Tucci got back into costume just to film this promo, but it may be the magic of CGI.)

Tim Palen, the chief brand officer at Lionsgate, said, “Dubai Parks and Resorts is a fantastic partner. Together we have created an interactive experience that allows fans from around the world a chance to immerse themselves in the world that Suzanne Collins created in an authentic, fun and exciting way.”

Honestly, we’re discussing a theme park which made a percussion show out of a rebellion that ends with the whole district getting firebombed, so there really isn’t much more for me to add. But it remains super-weird that The Hunger Games phenomenon has been adopted so straightforwardly, with no awareness or acknowledgement from the studios of how their marketing plays into exactly what the book’s critiquing.

It’s genuinely surreal – like, premise-of-an-SNL-skit surreal – to see them build a Hunger Games theme park in Dubai, a city which struggles deeply with income inequality, to promote a movie about how the rich make spectacles out of other people’s suffering. This is a book about dystopian child-murder, and we’re going to make it into a “fun and exciting” immersive theme park?

(And, yes, I suppose Star Wars is technically about anti-imperial warfare, and Harry Potter is about trying to stop a violent political movement built around “pure blood.” But those franchises aren’t also explicitly and scathingly critiquing the ways that fascism and late capitalism use media and spectacle to control people and cover over suffering – so their theme parks are definitely less absurd. Also, who in the world would want to live in Panem?)

The script for 2017 continues to keep things waaaay too on-the-nose.

(Via Variety and SYFY Wire; image via Lionsgate)

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Saturday, October 21st, 2017 04:27 pm
I'm currently trapped on the sofa between a hard drive and a music device and under a laptop and a cat. So here's a meme that came to me from Australia:

Had tattoos: No. I have the same problem with tattoos as with people asking for my favourite book/music/whatever - I can't decide.
Had surgery: Nope
Broken any bones: None
Shot a gun: Surprisingly, yes: target shooting, with air rifles, at the university gun club
Quit a job: Yes
Flown on a plane: Yes, many times. First time was 1988, when we went to Crete on our very first foreign holiday. I think the highest number of planes on a single holiday was 11, when we went to Vietnam and Cambodia in 1996.
Driven 100+ miles in car: It's hard to imagine the answer being 'no', though these days the majority of my journeys are short local ones.
Gone zip lining: About 10 years ago. (I was rubbish. I was also rubbish at abseiling.)
Watched someone give birth: No. That's another thing I'd be rubbish at. I have passed out at the sight of blood - some of it on TV - multiple times.
Watched someone dying: My Father. For a while. It look five days, and I was only there for one.
Ridden in an ambulance: Not an emergency one.

Travelled to:
US version
... Canada: Once, for fannish reasons (due South & C6D)
... to Europe: Yes
... to Washington D.C: No
... to Florida: No
... to Colorado: No
... to Mexico: No
... to Las Vegas: No.
UK version, suggested by peasant
... Scotland: Yes
... North America: Once for fannish reasons (SF)
... London: Yes, for work, friends, culture, arts, shopping
... Cornwall: Yes, while I was at Uni, with my then boyfriend
... Wales: Pretty much every year of my childhood for family holidays, and then 3 of the last 4 years with abrinsky, my brother, niece and nephew
... France: Twice, just on a day trip both times
... Monte Carlo: No
Australian version, suggested by dalmeny
... Tasmania: No
... Melbourne: Once for fannish reasons (SF)
... Canberra: No
... Far North Queensland: No
... the Centre: Yes
... the Top End: No

Sung karaoke: Absolutely not. It's on a list entitled 'You Can't Make Me, And If You Try I'll Leave'. See also: dancing.
Had a pet: Yes. Nine cats: Holmes, Watson, Molly, Tabitha, Lucy, Mina, Urvashi aka daFoof, Jia aka The Princess, Orwell. In that order. Lucy, The Princess, and Orwell are still with us.
Been downhill skiing: No, I'd be rubbish and probably break something
Gone snowboarding: No, I'd be rubbish and probably break something
Been able to read music: Once upon a time - played recorder, piano, cello, clarinet at various times at school - but don't know if I can still do it
Ridden a motorcycle: round a field solo; on the road only as a passenger
Ridden a horse: My best friend at school was obsessed with horses and I sometimes went riding with her. I've probably been on at least as many elephant rides, though. And the longest ride I've been on was 3 days on a camel in the Sahara.
Stayed in a hospital: No
Ridden in police car: No
Driven a boat: No
Seen a UFO: No
Been on a cruise: Not the holiday-on-a-giant-boat-with-lots-of-people kind, no. I've explored lots of places - cities and wilds - by boat: St Petersburg, Bangkok, down the Irrawaddy in Burma, loads of places in India, tributary of the Mekong in Lao, Vietnam, the Farne Islands, around various Greek islands
Run out of petrol: Once, while I was learning to drive, because I had a lousy instructor. Much more recently, I had to pull over and phone abrinsky to rescue me because otherwise I was going to run out before I reached a petrol station.
Eaten sushi: Yes; omonomnom
Seen a ghost: No

(Edited freely for grammar/consistency)
Tags:
Saturday, October 21st, 2017 10:08 am
Hey all, just a reminder post: only a couple more days for bidding!

The [community profile] fandomlovespuertorico auction ends on 10/23!


HERE is my thread/offering.

And here are some other awesome things you might want to bid on. (Plus plenty of others if you check the list of folks offering, of course. Scope it out, y'all.)
Saturday, October 21st, 2017 09:37 am
So, I shall elect to call that Night Minus One, as against Early Morning Day Zero: for, as anticipated, Karen had a horrid time of it. She's sick as a dog, and staying in bed until the last possible moment. I didn't sleep much either, despite having taken a lorazepam in hope; as you know, I have my own issues, and was out of bed frequently beside to fetch her things she couldn't achieve herself.

Still'n'all, we can hope that was the worst of it. Eleven o'clock this morning, she'll be transfused with a billion stem cells of her own making, and they will leap into action to restore her murdered immune system. This will be a process of months - boosted along the way by a repeat of all her childhood vaccinations, which weirdly delights me - but little by little, we can rebuild her. We have the technology. Etc.

Meanwhile, the tradition of Thursday dinners continues at our house in our absence, which delights me. Also I suspect the boys of being pampered rotten, which kinda delights me also. We have already seen photos of their new fluffy snuggly beds.