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[personal profile] spiralsheep
- Mr Tummyness goes for a walk.

Mr Tummyness the Faun stumped by a wish tree

postable  Mr Tummyness the Faun with the skeletal petals of winter

- BBC News online feed pull quote, lol: "A 12ft-long python found on the Norfolk Broads has still not been found." Perhaps it's not a python but a news ouroboros? ;-)

- Small political victories making me happy right left now:

1. In the UK the inquest into the death of Sarah Reed #sayhername found that her death in custody was preventable and the result of systemic racism and disablism. The inquest explicitly stated that Sarah Reed should NOT have been in prison, in addition to listing many forms of abusive maltreatment Sarah Reed was subjected to including the deliberate withholding of medication by prison staff. It doesn't give Sarah Reed her life back but this accurate and comprehensive inquest will help her family, especially her mother, and might even ripple outwards to help every Black disabled woman currently being abused by systemic racism and disablism (including by disabled white racists who volubly deny racism exists, and play at respectability politics, while inflicting their racism and the deadly results on Black disabled people).

2. In Poland justice activist Zofia Romaszewska, and mass street protests by ordinary Polish people, persuaded President Andrzej Duda to veto an attempt by the (democratically elected) fascist government of Poland to take control of the judiciary. The EU also protested and threatened sanctions, which is important because that might slow the power grab by fascists in Hungary and the further spread of overt fascism in Europe (which still has too much power and influence over the rest of the world).

3. All those gifs of Sean Spicer stealing a mini-fridge from the White House were 'king lolarious and, no, it's not a *distraction* because people can have fun while simultaneously caring about the srs bznz of resisting fascism.

In which there is the June Book, 1976

Jul. 24th, 2017 09:49 am
spiralsheep: Ladies Sewing Circle and Terrorist Society (Sewing Circle Terrorist Society)
[personal profile] spiralsheep
60. June Book, 1976, annual, comic, girls own. (3/5)

• 2-8 & 25-31 Mam'selle X and Operation Danger comic: sabotage and steam engines in occupied France.

• 9-11 Strangest Stories Ever Told (aka The Storyteller &c.) comic: our heroine befriends a tree that is subsequently involved in a fatal accident, made into a sledge, before the sentient and now also mobile tree saves the girl's life, "It's made from Philippa, darling, that's why! Daddy was very clever and sawed strips of wood off her to make it." Randomly set in Canada. SO EXOTIC!

• 12-15 Lucky's Living Doll comic: there are two episodes of this long-running comedy in this annual. Tina, the "living doll", looks after a mum and her baby after they miss the last bus and decide to stay the night in the mysterious invisible stranger's house instead of walking and/or hitching which would be much safer in the real world!

• 16 Just Joking comic: a page of single panel cartoons. I'm planning to post this image whenever anyone mentions "white feminism" from now on. :-D

Is this an uninhabited island? From the June Book annual 1976

Contents and two more scans. )
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[personal profile] spiralsheep
- Beloved of small children, canines, and corvids: two jackdaws watching me sitting on a wall, because apparently I'm more interesting than all the tourists dropping food a couple of hundred metres away (i.e. within the same birds' territory). I admire the daylight while midnight watches me....

Jackdaw curiosity, Lands End, Cornwall 05-17

- Third book in a row with a shack: "I didn't know then that the crooks were still quite near... hiding in a shack down a side turning." [Note: it's a shed in a European town, 1974.]

- Reading, books 2017: 70

59. The Wolves of Normality, Foyle Young Poets of the Year anthology, 2016, poetry. (?/5)

How to be a patriot, by Sophia Carney (full poem)

1. Plate your pain with reinforced steel;
fit it with tire treads and arm

it with the revolver you keep
in the kitchen cabinet next to the Coco Pops.

2. Exhibit your pride;
curate it like a museum display.

Soak the constitution in formaldehyde
that sticks the imperatives to the page.

Program the X-ray machine at the door to record
the shade of the visitors' skin
in hexadecimal.

3. Press the flag flat.

Turn it to a freeze-frame
between two Perspex sheets labelled
DO NOT TOUCH.

4. Neglect to mention the pixels of
blood that appear
under UV light and human scrutiny.
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[personal profile] spiralsheep
Rah rah rust, Zombie cheerleader, Lego monsters

- Ethics and a beneficial side effect of the NHS, which arose in my last post (due to via_ostiense's contribution) and is worth top posting imo: one of the benefits of freely available healthcare, especially accident and emergency care, is that normal everyday social interactions such as true accidents are prevented from immediately becoming acrimonious attempts by injured people in mild shock to assign blame to a legally evidential degree. Freely available healthcare = more social cohesion + fewer street incidents needing police attention (= also bad for the income of ambulance-chasing lawyers). I bet it's rare for the social and economic benefits of accidents being agreed to be accidental to be calculated into the value of a National Health Service and other forms of socialised medicine!

- Quote from my current reading for jesse_the_k: "The place Gorsch rented was a shack, really, and in those days shacks were truly shacks." [It's 2015 fanfic but traditionally published as a novel without filing the serial numbers off because the original went out of copyright in 2011.]

- Reading, books 2017: 68

57. Eleven root poems (Undici poesie radice), by Tiziano Fratus, 2000-2017, poetry. (3/5)

• So, firstly I note that that Dōgen was a Japanese Zen Buddhist philosopher and poet whose work is still extremely influential. Secondly I note that in Japanese aesthetics "rust", sometimes synonymous with "patina", is not only decay through time and interaction with environment but also a visual and tactile connection with the history of an object and the past more generally, so a narrow Western perception of "rust" exclusively as corruption often fails to encompass the full connotations within traditional Japanese culture (which shouldn't detract from the following poem as an object in its own cultural place and time, obv).

Parola di Dōgen, by Tiziano Fratus

Alla fine della giornata,
mi sono seduto al centro del vuoto:
ho lasciato che l’IO
a cui tanto avevo lavorato si arrugginisse.
Vedevo che l’acqua corrompeva,
ma smisi di preoccuparmene.
L’uomo che si era seduto
non si è più rialzato

English translation. )

In which there is the June Book, 1971

Jul. 18th, 2017 10:13 am
spiralsheep: Ladies Sewing Circle and Terrorist Society (Sewing Circle Terrorist Society)
[personal profile] spiralsheep
52. June Book, 1971, annual, comic, girls own. Characterised by many reprints from previous decades. It's telling about the general quality when the old fashioned moralising of The Golden Ballet Shoes was my favourite story! (3/5)

• 2 Illustrated rhyming calendar.

• 3-10 Lucky's Living Doll comic: a Christmas hijinks story, with witchcraft as a positive influence! :-D

• 11-17 Deadline for Danger short story: posh French girl resists the Nazis. Didn't read due to my requirement for anti-Nazi stories in 2017 involving more about contemporary neo-Nazis and related fascists, although I'm sure these stories were more relevant to earlier generations. ::wryface::

• 18-19 Puzzle Pages.

• 20-23 Spring Summer Autumn Winter feature: seasonal fashion and beauty tips.

• 24-31 I was Cinderella comic: our anti-heroine is unfair to her new stepmother, and then runs away to her old Nanny, while the stepmother tries extra hard because she was abused as a child.

• 32 Bunches illustrated verse: about a little girl who wants to grow her hair.

• 33-37 Bessie Bunter comic: "Your plump chum goes exploring space!"

Bessie Bunter in Space, June Book, annual 1971

Contents and one scan. )
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[personal profile] lizbee
I've been sick as a dog for almost a week -- I haven't had a voice since Saturday morning -- so I was "lucky" enough to have coughed myself awake just in time to catch the announcement live via Twitter.

I've really been hoping for a woman of colour as the next Doctor, and I didn't recognise Jodie Whittaker by name, so I felt a weird stab of disappointment and even betrayal when I saw her white hand, coupled with simultaneous excitement that it was clearly a woman's hand.

I still think that a white woman was the easy option, casting-wise, but I've seen Whittaker in a few things -- including the first four episodes of Broadchurch, which I inhaled last night and enjoyed so much I completely forgot about Game of Thrones -- and she's very, very good.

And I also wonder if it would be unfair to an actress of colour, to throw her to the same wolves that drove Leslie Jones off Twitter, while also expecting her to lead a show with (so far) all-white writers. Which is not to excuse the implications of casting a white woman, I just think it might be complicated. Most things are. Whitakker's already been hit with a barrage of misogyny, and I hope the BBC is filtering her mail.

Anyway, I've curated my social media so well that I haven't seen a single friend or acquaintance saying they're opposed to a female Doctor as such.

On the other hand, I've seen a lot of performative finger-wagging, reminding us that this is only a victory for white women (got it, thanks) and that we can't rely on pop culture to save the world (no, really? Good heavens, I had no idea, thank goodness I had you, random Twitter person, to tell us off for being invested in a hobby!).

I guess I'm weary of performative wokeness, and, while everyone's entitled to an opinion, I find a lot of opinions on Doctor Who from people who aren't or haven't been in the fandom ... lack context? Which is sometimes valuable, and sometimes it's just the hot take equivalent of "DID YOU KNOW THAT 'TORCHWOOD' IS AN ANAGRAM OF 'DOCTOR WHO'?"

ANYWAY. Whitakker. I'm looking forward to her run, I'm still holding out hope for Alexander Siddig or Sophie Okonedo as Fourteen (it's never too soon!), people are already complaining that Whitakker is too young and too old, so, like women everywhere, we already know she just can't win.
spiralsheep: I have a plan so cunning you could stick a tail on it and call it a weasel (boz4pm Blackadder Cunning Plan)
[personal profile] spiralsheep
- St Levan's church with coffin rest, stone seats, and old churchway cross, in Penwith, Cornwall.

St Levan's church with coffin rest, stone seats, and old churchway cross, Cornwall 05-17

St Levan's stone, Cornwall 05-17

1865 folklore meets 2017 empirical experiment. )

- Reading, books 2017: 67

53. The Little Shop of Happy Ever After, by Jenny Colgan, 2016, novel. This is pure wish fulfilment, chick lit fantasy ← please note that this is an accurate description not a negative judgment, lol. Warning: for a dodgy disability subplot. (3.5/5)

• Irony in a book about finding a new life, lol: She'd read lots of books about people finding new lives, which hadn't helped her mood either, had made her feel more and more trapped and stuck where she was, as if everyone except her was managing to get away and do interesting things.

• Our heroine sets off from urban Birmingham to rural Scotland: "armed with the Lark Rise to Candleford trilogy as well as the entire Outlander series [...]". Lol.

• I admit I'm not warming to a protag who picks up a large van she's never driven before, in a rural area she's never driven in before, with no map or prep, and then knowingly and deliberately drives onto a level crossing with the warning lights active, and nearly causes an accident that would have killed at least three people and possibly many more (if the fuel tankers had exploded), AND THEN tries to blame the accident on a wild deer instead of taking responsibility herself.

• So if you're wondering why I'm still reading: Surinder put her empty coffee cup down on a quivering pile of Regency romances, which promptly collapsed on the floor in a fainting fit.

And another thing... or four.... )
spiralsheep: Reality is a dangerous concept (babel Blake Reality Dangerous Concept)
[personal profile] spiralsheep
- A very important moral dilemma, erm, from the chicklit I'm reading, lol. So, the scenario is that a mother with a young child at hand and another in a "buggy" stumbles on steps and accidentally lets go of the buggy which descends the steps and is halted, it's implied fortunately for the occupant but never overtly stated, by crashing into a 20-something woman lower down, who stands up again but has a bleeding cut on her forehead. She's with a male friend. They appear affluent enough to have mobile phones, and either access to a car or taxi money. The mother of the children thanks the injured woman but then goes about her business. The injured woman complains that the parent is behaving unacceptably ungratefully because she didn't try to buy the injured woman an ice cream / coffee / whatever. My burning question is this: do you think the mother failed in her duty to materially reward the accidental saviour of her child? Because I admit that my reaction in that situation would be to assume the injured woman would want to seek medical attention for her facial wound and that slowing her down would range between thoughtlessness and irresponsibility (taking into account the fact she has a friend with her, otherwise I might intrude enough to suggest she should seek medical attention and ask if she needs help with that). Is this one of those situations where logic-driven practicality is a socially unacceptable response because material reward is an assumed normative behaviour? Or is the injured character's reaction and possibly also the author odd? /biased question, obv

- Twenty minutes in Newton Abbot between buses looks like this: an impressive zebra crossing, a gorilla named Francis, a library being literally propped up, and the entrance to a cattle market (bonus pub called the Swan Inn featuring Daffy Duck on their sign).

NA1 Impressive zebra crossing, Newton Abbot 05-17

Three more small images. )

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