gwyn: (bucky confusedface)
Oh, I totally forgot to mention in my last post--you remember a while ago when someone had asked me about translating my Groundhog Day/time loop fic I can't remember how this started (but I can tell you exactly how it ends) into Russian, only they had to remove the comment in order to get help translating it through some kind of fest? And I thought it was so strange but it turned out to be some kind of fandom battle where teams compete against each other, so everything had to be anonymous? Well, the translation was posted the other day (or at least, I think it's still the same person involved, though the poster had a different user name, but I can't imagine who else would have been interested in translating it), so if you were ever inclined to read that fic in Russian, you can now! Не могу вспомнить, как это началось (но расскажу, как закончится) is here on AO3.

I also forgot to mention some of the TV I've been watching during recovery. There were some shows everyone told me required absolute attention, which is not often how I watch TV these days, so I kept saving them for when I'd have time to really watch.

The Expanse was the first one, and I can see why people like it (I've only seen the first season since it's free streaming on Amazon; I'm not gonna pay 20 bucks for the second season, though), but it suffered from the same thing that pretty much all SF and fantasy suffers from that I really, really hate: it's still largely a show about men, with one or two roles for "strong" women, who are stuck representing all of our gender. One woman on a spaceship with all guys, one woman in politics surrounded by all guys…I'm just so fucking weary. And the small supporting female roles are all defined by their relationships to men--the police captain or whatever she was, the other woman, both defined by their relationships to creepy skeevy Thomas Jane, Juliette Mao by defying her father, by the men she's dealt with in the past. Maybe the second season is better, I have to hope so. I like the worldbuilding, but this hundreds of years in the future and women are still barely in the story; I have no more patience for stories where we're writing alternate worlds that suffer from the exact same myopic shit we have now.

[personal profile] belmanoir watched GLOW with me, I think we saw the first three, maybe four, episodes? I liked it, but I have to agree with a lot of what I saw in complaints about the show--Ruth is a terribly unlikeable person to hang your show on from the beginning. Not being likeable isn't inherently bad, there are great shows with horrible characters at the center, but she doesn't have a strong enough character to make you want to follow her on the path to redemption the way a lot of those stories do--when you have an unlikeable protagonist, you really have to beef up a lot of the other things to make them compelling. The other problem we both had was that they're spending way, way too much time on the men and not enough on the secondary female characters. Especially the wrestling dynasty girl, I want to see way, way more of her, and I don't give a fuck about the men. It's a huge mistake to spend so much time on the skeevy director guy or Piz the producer, especially in a story about these women. The '80s stuff is hilarious, though, and I love the soundtrack and I'm interested to watch more, I just hate knowing that they're going to keep spending so much time on the guys.

I've seen the first few episodes of Sens8, and I'm baffled by why people love this so passionately. But I'm hoping it gets better as it goes along; as it is right now, the only character I care about is the Mexican actor and his boyfriend, but that's not a lot of screen time. I mean I get that people like it because it's one of the few shows with main storylines of gay and lesbian and trans people, and I can definitely understand that, plus there's the international stories instead of it being yet another subset of white America, but…nothing's sparking with me so far and some of the stories are so over the top ridiculously unbelievable and stupid that I'm gnashing my teeth--but I'll stick it out at least through the first season to see if it gets better.

I watched all of the first season of Bojack Horseman and…wow, was that fucking depressing. It's billed as a comedy, of course, but I never laughed once, not even at all the fun it pokes at Hollywoodd or the guest voices or anything. It's just so goddamn bleak. It took me a while to get past the bizarro concept (the style of the world, with animals being partly humanistic and partly animalistic, and vice versa, is something that creeps me out beyond words), but I really wanted to embrace the show because I know a lot of people who love it so much, but I didn't expect it to make me wish I'd never woken up after surgery. I sometimes feel like that's all that's left of the future, this sort of miserable existence where you're just wasting time till you die, and the show made me feel that x1,000. So thanks, show, for making my already suicidal tendencies even more pronounced.

I'm self soothing by watching the first three series of The Great British Bake Off, which they won't show here for inexplicable reasons (on PBS and Netflix, season 1 is actually season 5, and season 2 is season 4, which just…why). It was interesting to see how the show evolved. I was kind of disturbed by one contestant because she was so clearly an abused woman, she showed every behavior I ever saw working at the shelter years ago--either abused by a husband or possibly a parent farther back, but since there was no husband in any of the home segments or the finale and her children said some really telling things, I'm betting it was an ex-husband. Good on her for participating, though, but it made me really uncomfortable many times because I kept wondering if the producers realized how it was coming across on screen. Still, it's fun to go back and see some of the things I've heard about in the show but never saw, and the show honestly, even when you're tense for the people you want to win, is so pleasant.
gwyn: (kevin alejandro)
If you're like me and you HATED the Southland season/possible series finale last week, you might be interested in this survey at the TNT/Southland Facebook page. At this point, since TNT hasn't yet said whether they'll renew it and so most of us assume they won't (and frankly, most of the fans seem to want them not to, since no one really likes to think of what they would try to do with that horrible finale), it's mostly just an opportunity to vent, and there's some weirdness with the list of characters that confused me in spots. But having a chance to vent at TPTB is kind of a nice thing when you've been walking around with flecks of foam all over your chin from your rabid teeth-gnashing. It felt oddly calming and upsetting at the same time.

One thing I made sure to say was how much I valued that this was a show with a capable, competent, smart gay man in a lead role who, at least at first, was stable and strong.
gwyn: (jayne hat sdwolfpup)
I'm kind of dreading tonight's Southland. After Ann Biderman left the series, it seems to have veered off into something I don't quite like as much, a "we're tough guys making a tough series for tough men to watch" or something. They've really kind of destroyed the audience-eye character, Ben Sherman, and have turned him into a complete and utter douchebag. And I admit, I'm biased, but I wanted Ben and Cooper to be together all the time, and I thought some kind of rapprochement with Cooper after the addiction storyline would have made for some really excellent drama, but no, now they seem to pretty much be done with each other for all eternity, and Ben's all judgey and shit.

But wow, Michael Cudlitz has been KNOCKING IT OUT OF THE PARK every fucking week these past few weeks. Every episode, he just leaves me with my jaw hanging open. Cut for discussion of episode specifics )
So my baby Blues has been a very expensive kitty lately. In his checkup last week, they found a cavity, which in kitties I guess is more of a bleeding hole in the tooth. Turned out there were two, both of the molars behind his bottom fangs, and they had to extract them in his dental cleaning -- and the plaque on his teeth was so bad it was like having a whole other tooth on top of them. He has always had bad teeth and gums, but it's getting ridiculous. And ridiculously expensive; it couldn't have come at a worse time as my credit card was really feeling the pinch with all the plans and deposits and such for my trip next month.

They gave him another one of those pain shots that last for three or four days like he got when his paw was infected; it's hysterical watching him roll around, completely stoned out of his mind, his pupils totally blown out, purring like a motorboat. I just hope he's not in much pain when it wears off.

Myself, I had the second round of dental work done yesterday, and aside from the bloody pulp in my mouth later, my jaw just mostly aches from trying to keep it open that long. I'm really tired of this. Especially coming at a time when I'm planning an expensive holiday.

Speaking of which, anyone on my flist in London? Want to meet up? I'll be there from the 14th to the 17th, then off to Cardiff for a few days, then back in London till the 22. I'd love to meet someone for drinks or lunch or something.
gwyn: (teevee jim ward morris)
Urg, every time I sit down to do an update or talk about something legit, something else comes up and consumes my life. I got a new foster dog in on Thursday, it was supposed to be a chill female Yorkshire terrier and it turned out to be a male Yorkie with significant health problems. Still, he was adorable, and I took him on Big Adventures yesterday but I could tell he was increasingly sick, and the bladder stones that were a problem and were going to have to be dealt with through surgery had become urgently bad. By the time we got home in the evening I finally got a call back from one of the rescue group ladies and they said to take him to the urgent care place, which I did. I hated leaving him there, poor little guy, he's been through some pretty severe trauma lately, but I couldn't keep belly bands on him enough -- he was just peeing ALL the time, and was seriously lethargic. I was concerned he wouldn't be able to handle surgery, but they did get the stones and he is resting, so I can pick him up tomorrow. And the best news is that the people down the street who have a female Yorkie met him Thursday evening and were really smitten, and without my prodding have already put in an application for him. So not only will he go to a really loving home, he'll be about six doors down from me! Win-win.

I wanted to write about TV, but I guess I'll have to do sound bites in 25 words or less:

Fringe: I...didn't sign up for this?

Revenge: I love Nolan's new 'do. Everything else is just taking up space.

Dexter: I think the people who write this have been in an experimental psychotropic drug program.

Homeland: Is KILLING me with its goodness and suspense and just basically HOLY SHITness.

Boredwalk Empire: Enough said. I don't know why I keep watching other than Jack Huston.

Happy Endings: Yay! They are back! Why doesn't everyone watch this show?

Castle: If a lead actress in a series had gained as much weight as Nathan has, she would be fired. (I still love Nathan.)

Alphas: I would just really rather they fight crime than conspiracies. Or just Gary fights crime.

Modern Family: Still cute after all these years.

Big Bang Theory: Please just spin off Penny, Amy, and Bernadette. The guys can appear occasionally.

Hunted: Could be interesting. Jury's still out.

Arrow: The only thing that will wake me up on this is when Nick Lea and Mitch Pileggi inevitably show up.

I still can't get interested in Person of Interest despite watching it a few times. I don't know what it is that everyone sees in it -- I maybe need to sit down with fangirls or something. But it just leaves me cold (possibly it's that I think Caveziel and whosits are kind of creepy dudes...), yet many people I like love it. And Teen Wolf is a nonstarter for me, which basically means I am missing about 80 percent of Tumblr posts. And Elementary might have been the only time I would ever happily watch anything Sherlock related, but it just seems like another CBS procedural to me. I don't know. I'm desperate for a new fandom, though.

Here, have a Hawaii pic:
Plumeria blossoms
gwyn: (monarch diet sing_song_girl)
I finally got the book that has been hanging over my head off to the publisher late last night, which was unbelievably difficult since my laptop had stopped being able to access Airport and I realized partway through uploading that my word lists and query files had not been updated in the network storage. Boy, that was a lot of added fun on top of the already insanely high level of stress. Note to self: Never take a day off when you've got a book due to write fanfic.

Now I have to pounce on all the things that got put on the back burners while I rushed to finish this. Which is tough, since I'm going up to Vancouver for a minibreak on Thursday through Saturday and I really really didn't want to work, but tomorrow's almost a lost day for me, as I have a big conference call with the university about our program. Boy, do I have an earful for them.

I haven't been able to watch the Hollow Crown at all, and it's driving me nuts because I want to see Hiddles's faaaaace. And I love me some Prince Hal. But still. Work to do and all that.

Today I had my weigh-in and body fat percentage checkin at the fitness place. I've only lost a pound, but have lost an entire percent of body fat. I'm OK with that, even if it's a little disappointing, just because I'm not at all focused on weight since I'm pretty heavy even when I've been thin (I'm just a very big Amazonian gal, no getting around that), but of course you still hope to hear that you've lost weight. I am, however, happy about the body fat percentage -- my trainer today said that's really not common to lose that big of a percentage that quickly, so, yay for that. Maybe I will be able to zip that dress up at Vividcon after all.

I have noticed that even though none of my clothes are looser, the blubber is less prominent around my waist. Today was a tough workout just because I'm leaving for the last half of the week, so I'm cramming all my workouts into these three days, no rest in between. And today I've battled a migraine and extreme intestinal distress, but I still made it through 100 crunches and a set of around the world crunches (to the sides and center, much harder!). Not to mention the fit test on the treadmill. Go me.

There is so much to catch up on fannishly! But it's gonna have to wait. I have really gotten into Strike Back on Cinemax/Sky -- two hot guys shooting shit and blowing shit up and having lots of sex. I want to talk about that and the other things I'm watching. It's weird, but I actually am not burning to go see Dark Knight Rises. Seriously, what is wrong with me these days? But I'm just so annoyed at Nolan loading it down with his favorite white people that it's been really hard for me to muster interest. I don't know -- worth it? Tell me what you think (and no, I care not about spoilers, never have, never will).

ETA: Hawaii pics! So, this is an apparently very endangered bird that I spotted at McBryde Garden. They number in the 300s right now, and they're considered critically endangered. They're Hawaiian moorhens.
Hawaiian moorhen

Hawaiian moorhen
gwyn: (mahone michael ghost)
OK, so by a fairly hefty margin, in my poll of what to do in the 100 things challenge, my favorite episodes of TV won. Coming in second was 100 vids I like, which maybe I'll take on in the future, who knows. The hard part is that so many things I like aren't online anymore after so many of us lost our streaming vids when Imeem went down.

I'm not sure if I'll start that before or after my vacation. So for the first time in about 15 years, I'm going on a real honest to god getaway to someplace exotic vacation next week, to Kauai and Lanai in Hawaii. After my dad died, I kept thinking of how stressed out I was, how much I had dreamed for years of going somewhere that wasn't for a convention or work, and I had the money to do it because of my dad's life insurance policy. So after I finished a couple of the big projects I was working on, I went into a travel agency (since I really couldn't cope with doing the research myself at all) and said here's what I'm looking at, what I want to do, and when I want to go, and the guy listened to me (I told him a little about things lately and how much work I've had, and how I wanted to carve out time to be warm, quiet, and focus on writing), and said, "It sounds like you need to relax, be taken care of, and pampered" and I exclaimed, "Yes! That's it! You can stop right there!"

I'm really looking forward to this. I haven't been to Hawaii since I was 21. I'm going by myself, so I don't plan to do a lot of adventuring, though I am considering taking a helicopter tour of the parks and beaches because I've never been in a helicopter, or possibly ziplining. No one believes that I want to just sit and look at the beach and palm trees and read and write. They all are practically daring me -- this kind of "there's so much to see and do and it's so beautiful, if all you do is sit there and work on your computer you're wasting money." But I mean... that's other people. I've always been content to just sit and enjoy scenery if I'm warm and comfortable.

And I should be pretty damn comfortable -- the place in Kauai is a rental villa thingie, so I'll have an entire flat at my disposal with ocean views at Poipu Beach. I'm planning to buy lots of food, and just hang out and enjoy doing nothing, with a few excursions here and there. The place has huge grounds with all kinds of things to look at, and two swimming pools, one with lagoons and meandering contours, and the other with waterfalls and stuff. I can walk to the beach, or drive, or go somewhere else, because I'll have a car. And on Lanai, there really isn't much to do at all, and I'll be at a full-service resort on a bay with a marine preserve there, so I can snorkel to my heart's content right at the hotel, and then sit on my ... well, lanai and write.

I feel very decadent. At one point I told the guy, "Money's not a big issue right now" because I just wanted to go all the way, and not do what I have always done which is to pinch every possible penny and stay in crappy places because I needed to save. It's very weird. But most of the ancillary stuff is taken care of in the package, so that's all paid for. I just got a new camera to take on the trip, too. It's pretty snazzy for a point and shoot. I have a shit-ton of books I haven't had a chance to read on my Nook Color, and hopefully I can regain this feeling of excitement I had back in the fall about writing this novel. I'm afraid I've lost the idea and the enthusiasm, which scares me a little, but if it doesn't come, well, I'm still in paradise.

I just eked out my Club Vivid vid at the last minute. I'm tired of doing this to myself. I hate working against deadlines, but lately I've been so busy I can't get the jump start on things I usually need. I think it's a bad vid, but that's what I get for waiting so long. Next up, Premieres. I also haven't contacted the vidders for my vid show because I've been so busy. I shouldn't be writing this, but... my eyes are so tired from reading so much today to get this book proofed that I just can't do anything but look at my keyboard.

A few months ago I volunteered to help SDWolfpup out with putting together all the vid files in a disc for Bitchin' Party's vid show. Me and tech are notoriously unmixy, and I had never even opened DVD Studio before. It was a terrifying experience. The only reason we even got a disc out of that thing was Killabeez, who came over and showed me what to do and gave me tips. And even then, some of the files just... would not work for love or money, and I got to a point where I was cursing all vidders and wishing them all dead. I have no idea how the tech people put Vividcon together. My mind boggles. I always had respect for them before, but now I have something more like awe. It is hard. It is unbelievably hard, because people send in stuff that's the wrong aspect ratios and glitchy video and the wrong files and everything you can imagine, and the technology is just all different for every single person. It's INSANE. And you throw in someone like me, who's completely incompetent... well, recipe for disaster. And yet somehow I got the disc done, and it worked, and the vid show was incredibly well-planned, and it was a huge hit. So go figure. It took me a while but I finally got to a place where I felt proud of myself instead of just embarrassed by how stupid I am.

In fact, this was pretty much me the whole time I was doing it:

Lessee, what else? Geez, I don't know. Life is weirdly quiet lately, with Dad gone and just being bogged down with work. I had a brief break, but it's started up again, and I have to keep turning work away, which is just weird. I think the dogs are the biggest excitement in my world right now.


Nov. 11th, 2011 12:24 pm
gwyn: (BoB mrbnatural)
I always love the dates that are palindromes, and it's especially nice that it's Veteran's/Armistice Day. I wish my dad wasn't in such a state; I would have loved to take him to the special dinner at the VFW.

I am exhausted this morning. I took my new foster dog, Tilda, to the vet yesterday because she was supposed to have surgery for luxating patellas, but she has kennel cough, so they won't do it on her for at least a month. They gave me a shit ton of medication for her, and she also has tapeworms, so I had to give her that, on top of the other stuff and the eye drops she came with. I don't know what happened last night -- if the meds in combination did it, if one of them has this side effect, or what, but she was a nightmare and would not stop making noise and banging on her crate and whining and just generally being obnoxious. She's been really good all week about sleeping in her crate (so the kitties can move around and get used to her without being afraid), she likes to go in it, but she wouldn't stop till after 3, and then started up around 8. She may still have been whining all night, but I think I passed out from sheer exhaustion (I was at the vet -- I hate this place, but it's where the rescue group goes --for more than two and a half hours). And now, of course, she's sleeping soundly, whereas I have to work because I have two concurrent jobs going on.

I have to say, there's nothing in this world quite as gross as tapeworm in dog crap. I already hate picking up dog poo anyway, but then that... I don't know why the deworming didn't take, but it didn't, so I'm the lucky foster mom who gets to deal with it. Kennel cough is pretty bad, too -- they immediately started wiping everything and mopping everything with disinfectant, and now I feel bad because she's met a lot of dogs on our walks, and I pray she hasn't passed it on -- it's very contagious. She came to me with the undignified and demeaning name Toadette, and I said, no way, and immediately remonikered her. She answers to it just fine. And I make her sound like she's terrible, but she's actually quite lovely and completely ridiculous in the way only pugs can be. I have always loved pugs, and she's very much a pug in every possible way. There have already been quite a few applications for her, so I might be handing her off as early as tomorrow, which means I won't have had her for a full week -- this has been the case lately for all my dogs. It's rewarding, but the cats never have time to fully adjust to them, which makes it pretty stressful for them.

Pics of miss Tilda )
gwyn: (OMG OH NOES)
Found out yesterday that Dad is undergoing congestive heart failure. So this explains his fuzziness, his pain, the edema, and his breathing problems. They've moved him over to the health center (the euphemism for the nursing home part of the retirement community he lives at) and are giving him oxygen, increasing the dosage of the water pill to try to get the water off him, and keeping a close eye on him. He wouldn't go at first; he was horrible beyond belief on Friday, to a point where I can't talk about it without dissolving into tears of frustration, as I did Friday night in front of a bunch of people.

But after I talked to the doctor he called me (and I was surprised, because he'd hung up on me all weekend when I tried to talk to him by phone -- he couldn't process anything, hear anything, so he just hung up) and seemed surprisingly good, so I explained why he needed to go there, or he could go to the hospital if he wanted to (which, at least, would mean medicare would pay for a lot of this) for treatment, but that they couldn't treat him in assisted living, and the water pills will make him much more likely to fall. He agreed that it was a good idea. He wants to go back to his apartment, but the head of nursing isn't so sure that will ever happen. We'll see. He can't seem to sit up straight or use his power chair without hitting everything, but if that improves, it might be possible. I'd like it to be possible, just because the health center will bleed us dry financially.

He's convinced he's going to live as old as his grandparents did (into their late 90s), but seeing him today, I have no idea how long he can go on. He looks every bit his 87 years, and then some. Until last fall, he didn't look or act like an 80+ year-old. Congestive heart failure is what killed my second mom and dad, Mr. and Mrs. O, so this is kind of a big deal to me.

In other news:
I'm starting to work on a Justified vid. [personal profile] killabeez edited these two songs for me and put them together so that I can make this sort of epic dark vision I have in my head; the big thing is that I can't find any info about a street date for the season 2 DVDs, and I don't know if I should get the discs from England instead. It'll mean I can't play them in my blu-ray player, but at least I could have good source for the vid, which will no doubt take me forever to clip since I am drowning in work.

Regarding my fuck you, you fucking fucks comment yesterday that a couple people asked me about: OK, here is my bitter rant, let me show you it. I watched the season finale of spoilers for True Blood and adult angry language warning )

And even more fuckery from showrunners: I was really on the fence about Ringer, because I have my huge twin issues. I've almost never seen twins done right on TV (except for Fringe, god bless them), so I had a lot of trepidation, but it had SMG, whom I've liked since All My Children (seriously, Silver Kane? so delicious), and of course Ioan Gruffudd (be still my heart), so I figured I'd at least give it a shot. And then I read the fall preview stuff in EW and the showrunner said that one of the things that made it so great was that "twins are already creepy." And that just pissed me off SO MUCH. We're creepy to "normal" single-birth people. Fuck you, you son of a bitch.

Because it's not like we've had centuries of this already in lots of cultures around the world, where twins have been left out in the elements to die, or stabbed or strangled upon birth (usually the second twin out of the womb, which would have been me!), or ostracized from a community. Because, you know, we're creepy and mysterious. One of us must be from Satan, because it's not normal to have an egg split in two (and yes, I'm talking identical twins, because he was).

And then I watched the show and it was JUST. SO. BAD. Everyone told me it was, but I had no idea. SMG seemed like she was sleepwalking through the whole thing, Ioan is wasted, the dialog is crazy cheeseball, and that boat scene has to be the worst rear projection I have ever seen on film, hands down. I won't even get started on the whole idea that someone who loses her twin, even if they haven't been close for a while, isn't tortured by the loss because in the scheme of things, it has everything else wrong about twinhood, so why not that too? But it's so obvious that they're merely relying on the fact that twins are creepy and mysterious to sustain their story; the only time anyone ever seems to want to do twins is either to fulfill sex fantasies or to do the tired old evil twin storyline, which the showrunner was so completely enamored of. Because twins are creepy and mysterious and that automatically makes one of them EVIL. God. I just. What can you even say?

I wonder what you'd even call that -- single-birthist? What? Twins always have to represented as one being evil, or being sex fantasies. And hey, in this show, they get to be both! Yay? Needless to say, I'm not sticking with this, even for SMG and IG. I hope your show goes down in a big flaming hairball, Mr. Showrunner, you fucking fuck.
gwyn: (sharpe sad wizzicons)
Brutus got adopted today! At least, I hope so -- I'm waiting to hear how the meeting went. It was fairly unusual -- the daughter of an elderly couple up in Sequim saw him in the newspaper and sent the clipping to her folks. They fell in love and so she arranged to get him and bring him up there. They have excellent references, both the daughter and parents, and they have had rescue dogs for years, so they're familiar with some of the behavior issues. He tried to nip her, which he has never ever done, and I was kind of freaked that he flipped out so bad, but we figured out it was her white baseball cap that was causing the trouble. He has difficulty meeting strangers because of his vision problems, and that just tipped him over the edge I guess. But when they drove away, he was on her lap, and seemed quite content. He was afraid of me when he met me, too.

We're hopeful that the donations we've received so far might help fund some surgery for him, but we're going to have to see how everything goes. I miss the little dude! I got so used to him clinging to me all the time, and going for walkies. He loooooved to go for walks. I know he'll be really happy though, and he's got a wonderful life ahead of him. Thank you so much to everyone who's helped out. If he gets the surgery, it's going to be the bestest thing ever.

Class finished for the quarter on Thursday, and I feel a huge weight off my shoulders. It's funny that the last year I plan to teach it, I finally get a class who appreciates me and gives me good evals. Oh well. Now it's on to planning my all-day workshop for the program in a couple weeks. I haven't done a damn thing on it.

I broke down and decided to get HBO since there are so many programs I want to watch, but I missed the second and third Game of Thrones eps, and they are not repeating them at all. I'm so frustrated by that, and that they're not repeating the first two Tremes, either, which I got HBO too late to get. I know I can DL it, but it just doesn't look as good in avi format as it does on the TV from the satellite.
Unpopular opinion ahoy )

Speaking of reading. I've been considering getting an e-reader, even though I hate them on general principle, because I think it would be nice to be able to carry my reference manuals around with me when I use the laptop in other places like visiting my dad, as well wondering if it would help me get back to reading more books. I don't read books at all anymore unless it's for work, and that really saddens me. I'm much more attracted to the Nook color, because it handles graphics and you can borrow books. But every single person I know here has a Kindle. Once I saw how badly that handles graphics and PDFs, I decided that wasn't for me. I would love to hear from any of you who have a Nook Color what you think, and if you feel it's worth it. One of the big things for me is being able to read outside, which is something I can't do with my laptop and I hear the iPad is terrible for. I'm getting landscaping for my backyard, so I think I'll be outside a lot more in the future and it would be great if the Nook is good for that. Would love to hear your opinions!
gwyn: (teevee jim ward morris)
[personal profile] sol_se posted a wonderful little trailer for some new BBC shows coming up or already running, including a show with... gasp!! Jason Isaacs called Case Histories, and John Simm's new show Exile. I am beside myself. Shirtless Jason! Action Jason!! ::contented sigh::

I think I need to resurrect my Men Who Make Me Happy posts and do one for Jason, because he does indeed make me happy.
gwyn: (justified raylan leaning)
The season finale of Justified last night managed to maintain the whole explosiveness that they've kept up through all the episodes previously. I didn't know if they could, but damn, if they didn't bring their game again.

Spoilers want to just lean up against the doorjamb a little )
gwyn: (wall-e inanna)
I've been waiting for months for Discover magazine to put up this fantastic, utterly fascinating article on a possibly viral connection to schizophrenia (and maybe some other illnesses such as MS), and they have finally posted The Insanity Virus online.

If this pans out, it could be one of the most groundbreaking mental health developments ever. In the same magazine a few months before, they posted a long interview with the guy who discovered that almost all cases of stomach ulcers were in fact caused by a bacteria, not stress or spicy food, and the incredibly difficult battle he had convincing people of the viability of his research. I'm really curious to see where this virus thing for schizophrenia goes, and if it will have a similar resolution.

I'm sort of a ... geek about this topic, I guess, because I wanted to work with autistic children and schizophrenics when I was younger; that was my goal when I went to college, but I quickly learned I would never be a good scientist. But I've never stopped being incredibly interested in the topic; I watched the HBO movie Temple Grandin tonight, in fact, and was reminded that in the '60s, they called autism "infantile schizophrenia" and of course that was when they still blamed it on "refrigerator mothers." We've come a long way, but if there's a virus connection, that could change everything we think we know.

And even more than that, I'm watching it because of the MS connection -- the Northwest, where I live, has the highest incidence of MS anywhere, and an awful lot could be done if we can find out more about it. I was a caretaker for a woman with very advanced MS once, and it was devastating to watch; to have something we could hold on to, identify and deal with... it would make such a huge difference.

BTW, if you haven't seen Temple Grandin, I highly, highly recommend it. Claire Danes is stunning, and it moved me to tears a number of times -- including one part where she's explaining her humane slaughter ideas, where I very nearly sobbed. I've followed her career since she pretty much became known, and they did a magnificent job of translating her books and explanations of how autistic people think into an easily relatable film for people who aren't familiar with the issue. Incredible movie.

I owe a dear yuletide author letter soon, but I'm still having a funk about the whole thing since Charlie Jade the character was deleted from the Charlie Jade the fandom nomination form. It's going to take me a few days to get over my snit. I watched the first two eps with [personal profile] belmanoir the other night, and it made me feel intensely fannish for it again, and it was hard to lose that -- it's left me feeling really uninterested in participating. I'm going to have to snap out of it soon though. And man, watching CJ on the plasma... I have no idea why the hell it's taken me so long to rewatch it on the plasma hi-def, but wow, wow, wow.
gwyn: (nikita fights like girl)
I shouldn't be doing this, because I'm drowning in work, but I just have to take a mental break from the work and the people being wrong on the Internet. And I miss talking about TV.

So, new series I have checked out, let me tell you about them.

Covert Affairs )

Rizzoli and Isles )

Haven )

I haven't seen Glades yet, but I'm going to try to catch up on at least the first few eps at some point... if I ever have TV time again.

Last day

Jun. 29th, 2010 11:40 pm
gwyn: (deb morgan problem)
So, last day of the 30 days of TV meme! Today is

Day 30 - Saddest character death

Hm. I had to think about this one for a while and I still haven't decided. I expect a lot of people would peg Joyce's death on Buffy as the one that would get me the most, because it came so close on the heels of my own mom's death. But I really didn't like The Body; I found it stagey and preachy and full of annoying and precious, twee actorly moments. I was a lot harder hit by the episode after The Body, which felt much more real and accurate and heartbreaking to me.

And I don't watch a lot of the shows that have big, Emmy-nom-targeted death scenes, so that affects choices, too. I would probably pick Wesley's death on Angel except that it just pisses me off too much. I have no objections to a good character death -- I actually like it when it's done well -- but once again, I felt like we were set up so baldly that it left a bad taste in my mouth (not that I didn't cry like a baby when it happened). And the... characters on The Wire who died were all sad, but in the scheme of things, you kind of had to expect them, so I don't know if they can qualify as saddest (well, okay, except for ). And then there is Deadwood's )

So that leaves...I'm sure this would surprise people )
gwyn: (paul god)
Gosh, I'm really really behind. This weekend was... overwhelming, and now I'm having all kinds of technical problems with the two books that are putting me further and further behind. So much for regular posting!

Day 27 - Best pilot episode
I think I would give this one to Miracles. Back in the day, when TV shows weren't uploaded to torrents, you kind of had to make a point to catch a show when it aired, and I was really intrigued by the sound of the episode description when it bowed. I also knew that was the show David Greenwalt had left Angel for, so I expected it to be good. I was completely blown away. From the beginning, with the accidental exhumation of the nun (I always think of Destina's "frosty dead nun eyes" here) to the extreme crisis of faith Paul has in the first moments, to the meeting between Paul and Alva, and then the car-train crash (I could NOT believe that they killed off their hero in the first episode!) with Paul's blood forming God Is Now Here, and then that cool Exorcist shot at the end with Paul going up the stairs... I was utterly and completely hooked. I wish so much this show could have come out on TNT or something like that, where they would have known what to do with it.

Um, I guess I should make a new web streaming copy of Darkness, Darkness and put it up, huh?

Day 28 - First TV show obsession
I'm not entirely certain how this differs from favorite childhood show, because to me, the feelings are pretty synonymous. So I will probably have to go back to Laredo, because I went to great lengths to try to watch it when I was young. If this means being in fandom and doing fannish activities, then it would probably be The Professionals -- we watched it on Canadian TV back in '78 and were so insane for it that we gathered every Friday night hours before it aired (at 12:00 am) and got prepped with the old piano-key VCR and all our snacks and drinks, and then immediately played it off the tape after it was over. Then we joined the Professionals fan club, which we saw advertised in the London Times (yes, I know, Times of London, whatevs) -- this was no small feat in 1978, trust me. I had the fan club posters and other crap all over my dorm room when I went to college, and everyone always asked me who they were.

Day 29 - Current TV show obsession
I miss the days when I felt that obsessed about things, you know? The closest thing I have to that is Justified, right now. That's really the only series I feel like, I have to see the new ep rightnowomgi'lldieifidon't. Even True Blood I've only just caught up on the first two eps today. Whatever it takes to make it work for me like Pros did once upon a time, Justified is the one show that really has it. And White Collar is somewhat close.
gwyn: (BoB mrbnatural)
Well, I got my new chair Wednesday, and so far, it's not much better than the previous torture device. It's definitely kinder to my hip, no question, but my legs still get numb sitting for longer than five minutes. At this point, I just don't know what to do anymore. I spent so much money on this chair, I can't get rid of it (I can't afford anything else!), and I've been using the laptop in the living room for the book edits, but that isn't any better in the long run. My legs still get numb. The IT band on my left leg is making it nearly impossible to sit comfortably, even with the acupuncture, and I can't seem to stretch it back to normal. Last night I didn't get much of any sleep at all. I give up. At this point, between the arm pain and the leg pain, I can barely work, yet I've got more work than I've ever had at one time.

So, more meme.
Day 25 - A show you plan on watching (old or new)

I have all the episodes of The Pacific waiting to go, but for some reason, I just can't make myself watch it. Partly because I'm so effing busy OMG, but partly, I think, because I know it won't be as good as Band of Brothers, and you can't capture lightning twice (watch my tortured metaphors in awe!), so the things that were magical about BoB, I think, will feel really forced when pushed into another show from the same folks who made that one. And the parts I had the toughest time watching -- and still have a hard time watching -- in BoB will be similar to much of the story of The Pacific, by that theatre's very nature of combat. I've also got Defying Gravity, with Ron Livingston, waiting to go, so I have a feeling I'll try DG before TP, even.

Day 26 - OMG WTF? Season finale

I have to go back for my first entry in this meme, Now and Again. Because, I think, it was a hit and everyone assumed it would come back (fuck you to death, CBS), it had one of the hangeriest cliffhangers ever on TV. And we'll never know how it ended. The eggman had broken out of prison to get Michael, Michael had grabbed Lisa and Heather and run away with them, Dr. Morris was hot on their heels with an order to find them and probably kill them... crap crap crap. Now I'm freaking all out all over again.

SDWolfpup did a great meme about favorite actor roles, and she hit me with some incredibly wild names, so more on that later once I get some work under my belt.
gwyn: (al cheers)
Day 24 - Best quote

Uh. Really? Like anyone could pick one? As if. I'm really tempted by my love of the shiny and new, Justified, to pick Raylan's fabulous line "People are entitled to their interests, and I'm entitled to think those people are creepy." But honestly, I think, despite all the great lines from the Jossverse and some of my shiny new shows, and the amazing things said on The Wire (especially by Omar "a man got to have a code" Little), I come back to Al Swearengen and the quote in my icon, "Don't we face enough fuckin' imponderables?" He said it when they were putting up the telegraph cables, commenting on how messages were being sent through the air, but really, it applies to so much in this world, doesn't it? I don't think a week goes by I don't think of that line.

Heng dai, Swegen.

I just got another book to copyedit for a publisher I have really wanted to get a foot in the door with, and... it's on top of another book that is requiring a massive, heavy edit, and some web work, and another piece from the French woman I often work with. And I have to get my vid finished and sent to VVC tomorrow. I think I'll go kill myself now.
gwyn: (kevin alejandro)
Day 23 - Most annoying character

[personal profile] crickwooder said George Costanza for this one, and I have to admit, it's pretty hard to top that choice. Because, dude. I just. HATEY HATE.

And I have thought about this all day and can't come up with someone. I mean, there are lots of candidates, don't get me wrong. But most annoying? That's a difficult crown to give. Wow, I wish I were graphically inclined, because then I could do some sort of elimination challenge chart. Do I go back to Gilmore Girls, which, when they had annoying characters, they went all the way? Or Buffy, which could turn a decent person into an annoyance with picosecond precision? Or how about shows I don't like, like SPN or SGA, primarily because I find, you know, the characters annoying? Because that gets into a whole other level of problems, since so many of my flist loves the characters I hate most, and I don't really want to do that nasty peeing on cereal thing. And don't even get me started on Sylar and Heroes.

No, I think I will give the blue ribbon to...someone recent, and someone that I don't believe anyone I know likes: Tammy on Southland. I don't know if there's ever been a more grating character: she's whiny, stupid, selfish, shallow, needy, grating, feeble, pathetic, venal, and vile. We're supposed to care, I guess, that she's trapped in suburbia, the soul of an artist going stale being married to a cop, whatever. I don't care. I wished she would have gotten killed by the drug dealers she met on the bridge. I wish the dog would have eaten her in the beginning. I wish to hell she would go away. There are some truly annoying characters on Southland, but she trumps them all.
gwyn: (jaye maechi)
Day 22 - Favorite series finale

I think this may actually be the hardest one of all, simply because almost no show that I've ever loved ended well, or they ended before their time and we were left in a terrible cliff-hanging state. So the one I would probably put here is one from a show I wasn't especially fannish about, but did watch, and saw this when it aired: The finale of Newhart, where Bob Newhart wakes up and tells Emily, his wife in his previous series, The Bob Newhart Show, that he just had the craziest dream. It's the stuff of legend now, and for good reason. It was brilliant, and funny, and completely out of left field -- and it was also very, very risky, something I really admire. I might have put one of its companion series from MTM, the Mary Tyler Moore Show, here except that it actually pained me that it was ending (that show meant so much to me as a nascent feminist girl growing up in the '70s).

So many other shows tried risky endings, and usually failed (the rage I still have over the ending of St. Elsewhere knows no bounds), and I found M*A*S*H's finale mawkish. Newhart's was just right. I'd also give a shoutout to Wonderfalls, just because even though it was canceled way too far before its time, the producers expected it and so they created a situation that worked as an ending and a possibility of more to come.

gwyn: (nik mikey isabellecs)
Day 21 - Favorite ship

I actually wrote a Ship Manifesto entry for this one, many years ago. I had to think about this one a lot, because there are many great 'ships, for me, but rarely have any 'ships given me as much joy and heartache as Nikita and Michael on LFN. The show's producer's were basically on crack the entire time they worked on the series, which is evident in the course the relationship tracked over the four and a half seasons of the series. (Anyone who watches 24 knows what kind of crack Surnow and Cochran smoked; they didn't change their stripes much after they went on to do 24 from LFN.)Continuity of story was pretty much unheard of, and when we finally got a real relationship and some sexin' up after three seasons of keeping them apart, we only got to see it afterwards, not when it actually happened.

But still, I think we were pretty much happy fans -- I don't believe you could really like that relationship without being the kind of person who likes thwarted love and suffering and angst and sacrifice. Nikita was Michael's polar opposite, which is why it worked so well and was so grandly operatic in the scheme of things. He was stoic to the point of seeming robotic, she wore her bleeding heart all over her. But we knew they were hopelessly in love, no matter what they showed on the outside.

When Nikita was brainwashed into believing she didn't love Michael, he was completely lost, and had this attitude of "if I can't bring her back, I'd rather die" and that was pretty much heaven to me. I also loved the fact that Roy Dupuis and Peta Wilson were both willing to get nekkid and had no problem with the intense love scenes they often did. (This deleted scene from S5, when Michael comes back at the very end of the series, is a good example. Apparently, they spent an entire day on a closed set filming this, but USA cut out the longer shot of the two of them in that "graphic" position and on airing all we got was the clutching from the shoulders up.)

Like a lot of Michael/Nikita fans, I hated the ending of S4, when the show was originally canceled. The last thing we see of the two of them is a completely different Nikita cruelly telling Michael she never loved him, and it was such a lame conclusion to something we'd invested our hearts and souls in. They were trying, I think, to make us believe that she did it out of love, to let him go, but it was handled unbelievably badly and didn't work at all. Fortunately, at the time, USA was failing, and so they brought the show back after a fan campaign, and the eight episodes they did to wrap it up were cheesy but much, much better in terms of how the relationship ended. It felt right, and hopeful, and incredibly bittersweet, with an emphasis on bitter, just the way it should have been for those two.

The CW is going to remake Nikita this fall, which I'm not especially happy about, but I'll reserve judgment. I think 'ships like Mikey and Nik's comes along very, very rarely on TV, and you can't buy that kind of chemistry, so they have a long way to go in that regard.

This is making me so nostalgic. I really should remaster some of those old LFN vids, even if there are only two people I know who'd enjoy them.

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