Linkspam: Wonder Woman, misc.

Jun. 24th, 2017 12:41 pm
umadoshi: (Wonder Woman 01)
[personal profile] umadoshi
Wonder Woman

"Patty Jenkins is Co-Writing ‘Wonder Woman 2’ With Geoff Johns".

"5 'Wonder Woman' Amazons On The Power Of Their All-Woman Army".

"Native Actor Eugene Brave Rock Talks About His Role in Wonder Woman: As Wonder Woman smashes records, Native Actor Eugene Brave Rock talks about a whirlwind week and being gifted a headdress".

"The Revolution Won’t Be Saved By Wonder Woman — And That’s Okay". [The Establishment] "Wonder Woman is a stand-in for so many women in some position of vulnerable visibility who feel unfairly scrutinized for their ideological imperfections; she, and her at times tortured relationship with the women’s movement that adopted her as a mascot, provide a helpful case study for understanding the consequences of the demands we place on each other."


Miscellaneous

"I'm A Teenager And I Don't Like Young Adult Novels. Here's Why".

"“Boys By Girls” Is Using the Female Gaze to Redefine Modern Masculinity".

While looking up some planting info for plants we have, I learned about the existence of a couple of plant types that we're not likely to ever have, but which look really neat: arisaema (cobra lily) and tacca (bat plant).

"10+ Of The Oldest Color Photos Showing What The World Looked Like 100 Years Ago".

"Disney Illustrator Imagines A Life With A Pet Octopus, And It’s Just Too Adorable (10+ Pics)".

"Writing Advice to My Students That Would Also Have Been Good Sex Advice for My High School Boyfriends". [McSweeney's]

"These “Galaxy” Flowers Hold Entire Universes On Their Petals".

"You", via a locked post where the link was described as "How ordinary (often well-meaning) people make life much harder than it needs to be for people with disabilities."

"Adhesive Foot Pads Let You Ditch the Flip Flops with Flexible Feet Protection". [Article links to active Kickstarter.]

"Animated GIFs Reveal Differences Between Subway Maps and Their Actual Geography".

"Oh, Lovely: The Tick That Gives People Meat Allergies Is Spreading".

"World's first water park for people with disabilities is literally the coolest thing ever created". (Now, if only it weren't called "Inspiration Island".)

"Brutally Honest Freelance Writer Bios". [McSweeney's]

"The Lunar Sea: The moon influences life in a surprising and subtle way: with its light".
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Posted by Antonia Honeywell

At one point in Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale, a rape victim is surrounded by other women ritually chanting that the rape was her own fault. I live in the UK, so haven’t managed to see the new television adaptation yet, but I imagine it makes a powerful scene. Perhaps as powerful as the one where a woman is forced to pretend she’s enjoying sex, because that’s what she’s for, and the man has gone to so much trouble to take her out. Or the one where the State strings abortionists up on the Wall, for everyone to enjoy, or the one where the woman who gives birth is immediately abandoned, her purpose fulfilled, and a simple game of Scrabble is the greatest rebellion.

Margaret Atwood didn’t stamp a foundation date on the Republic of Gilead, but the novel exerts as powerful a hold on readers in 2017 as it did upon publication in 1988. Is a room full of older white men determining that rape should be classed as a pre-existing condition for health insurance purposes really so different from declaring that there must be some form of punishment for women who have abortions, as in The Handmaid’s Tale? What’s the expiry date on a terrifying futuristic vision? Clearly, three decades is not enough.

What about twice three decades?

Six decades ago, in Nineteen Eighty Four, George Orwell wrote of a totalitarian regime in which every home, building and public space is monitored by a screen, which broadcasts as it surveys. Winston Smith, performing his compulsory morning exercise at his telescreen, finds himself reprimanded by Oceania’s Jane Fonda for not trying hard enough. From Poltergeist to The Ring, the blurring of the line between the screen and real life has been the stuff of horror, not science fiction. For Orwell’s original readers, the idea of being personally addressed from the telescreen was one to fear—the loss of individual freedom expressed in a moment.

Where lies the horror now? For the modern reader, such reprimands are the stuff of everyday life. I wear a wristband that shouts at me if I haven’t moved for an hour. My phone throws up dresses I can’t live without, because I once bought one online. My laptop puts together my weekly grocery shop. ‘Antonia,’ it trills merrily, ‘have you run out of Medium Sliced White Bread?’ Sometimes I feel like Tom Cruise in Minority Report, haring down a station corridor while the models on the advertisement hoardings literally turn and call his name. Even more so when the next notification I receive is extolling the virtues of wholemeal.

And yet, if I step away from this intrusion—if I do all my shopping in store, in person, with cash, and I throw away my smart phone—I’ll lose my primary means of connection with the world in which I live, in which I am bringing up my children. More than this—I’ll lose the time I save by being able to shop, e mail, research, chat and read at the touch of a button. It’s a trade off—one that allows me to do my piano practice. Bake. Write. It drives me mad, and it keeps me sane. That’s the great oxymoron of our time, and Nineteen Eighty Four is our warning light. Sleepwalking to Oceania cannot be an option.

Step back seven decades, and Aldous Huxley shows us a world in which babies are grown in glass jars, their future lives laid out for them by the section of society in which they’re born. Leaving aside the vast advances that have been made in the science of conception and gestation since Brave New World was published in 1932, set against which a baby developing in a jar doesn’t seem such a great leap, we do seem to be moving towards a world in which success or failure is set out at birth.

In our world, education standards have become inextricably linked to parental wealth; earning potential is determined not only by education but by family connections and social environment. Wealth has become a justification in its own right as the gap between the rich and the poor becomes more extreme and less bridgeable. Show me where in the world a child is born, and the education and income level of its parents, and I’ll be able to predict, with some confidence, whether its life will be lived as an Alpha or an Epsilon.

Once, we used our fiction to send our heroes into space, to restore peace to warring galaxies. We were noble and brave, and our incursions into distant and dangerous realms brought hope and justice. HG Wells published The War of the Worlds in 1897; the chances of anything coming from Mars are still a million to one.  And those pesky Martians weren’t even strong enough to defeat the germs that we human beings fight off every single day. But our world has changed. The mirror of science fiction can also show us, not as heroes, but as a flawed and arrogant animal, seemingly intent on destroying the very best of ourselves.

We’re faced with impossible questions, dilemmas that are too big for the individual to solve. Our planet needs action on the largest scale, governments that embrace and accept the scientific evidence of the damage that human activity has done and is doing. I cannot refreeze the ice caps by watching videos of disorientated polar bears, or solve poverty by donating to the food bank; I cannot give the homeless person in the doorway a place of refuge by giving a few coins. My advantage is as systemic as Winston Smith’s oppression, as Offred’s eradication as an individual, as the monotonous, servile life of the Epsilon.

The rise of technology, the uneven distribution of freedom, the comfort of victim-blaming, perpetuate themselves in spirals. It seems that all we can do is close our doors—to surround ourselves with caring, loving people with whom we are in sympathy, bar our doors and turn off the news. Faced with a collapsing society, the people in my book The Ship do just that.

But we must continue to face the ugly parts of life if we are to change them. If we resist, like the Mayday rebels in The Handmaid’s Tale, maybe eventually we will be able to consign these dire visions to the past, and enjoy them as the fictions they should be.

(image: Hulu)

Antonia Honeywell studied English at Manchester University and worked at the Natural History and Victoria and Albert Museums in London, running creative writing workshops and education programmes for children, before training as a teacher. During her ten years teaching English, drama and film studies, she wrote a musical, and a play which was performed at the Edinburgh Festival. She has four young children and lives in Buckinghamshire. The Ship is her first novel.

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Prompt for 2017-06-24

Jun. 24th, 2017 11:27 pm
sacredporn: Kris Allen icon made by Sacred Porn (Default)
[personal profile] sacredporn posting in [community profile] dailyprompt
Today's prompt is "a bed in the forest".

Moving means not being here anymore

Jun. 24th, 2017 12:48 pm
naye: a forest road seen through a haze of light (going where i want to be)
[personal profile] naye
It's so weird to consider leaving Cambridge.

I mean, leaving Britain is something I've been wanting to do quite badly for exactly a year - waking up to the Brexit referendum results early in the morning of June 24th was a gutpunch and I've never really caught my breath again. (Mostly because the Tories/Theresa May/Brexiteers keep refusing to treat us migrants as people, preferring to regard us as bargaining chips... and they're so bad at bargaining.)

But Cambridge?

I live here now. I have friends here! And a yoga studio and a hairdresser and a weekday morning running loop and a selection of weekend long runs and a job and a dentist and I've spent longer here in an unbroken streak than anywhere else in my adult life. (I lived for longer in a Stockholm suburb with my ex, but did a year in Japan in the middle.)

It's familiar, it's safe, it's pleasant. I don't dislike our flat - I wish it had a better view (any view!), and I wish the bedroom wasn't right on the street, and I wish we had a garden or something - but it suits our needs and the landlord is nice and it's got a dishwasher and a washing machine which I will now never be able to live without. And we've made it cozy and ours.

But there's no future here. We can never get on the property market - not in Cambridge, and not anywhere within a 30 minute commuting distance. I think the current property prices exceed 10 times an average yearly salary. Even for us DINKs, that's... not really feasible. And that's not even going into how small and dark and cold British flats are. (These are facts: Britain has the smallest living space per person in Europe. A lot of British houses don't even have double glazing. And possibly due to that, or due to legacy "window tax" issues, there are generally fewer and less generous windows than I'm used to.)

And jobs-wise, Skuld might keep getting promoted, but I've worked myself into a situation where there's no room higher up in the organisation, and I don't have enough experience to take the step to management anyway. Plus I've got a foreign degree in my field, and no experience of the local system, which means I can't ever get a foot in the library door here without taking a severe paycut.

Finally: I miss living close to actual nature where you can roam off the beaten track and there are lakes where you can swim in the summer and skate in the winter and you can pick berries and mushrooms and flowers. Here we have cultivated parks and a slow meandering river you can follow up to the point where personal properties cut pedestrians off, and then it's just fields. Sweden has so much nature. And you're allowed in all of it! We have an amazing law called allemansrätten. I never understood what an amazing gift this law is until I lived in countries with fences and PRIVATE PROPERTY NO TRESPASSING signs and conversations like "there's a nice view up here but we shouldn't get out of the car because the landowners don't like it". I mean, look at this from Wikipedia:

Basically the only places you can't go camping is in peoples gardens and protected areas like bird sanctuaries. )

So there's plenty of reasons to long for Sweden (including the summer nights I keep going on about), but to actually move there? And not be here anymore? So strange. I can stay in touch with friends online, but where will I find a hairdresser as nice as George, or a yoga teacher as patient as Kathy? Where will I buy my kewpie mayo and frozen karaage and other necessities? There's no UNIQLO in Sweden (yet, maybe) so that's half my wardrobe I can't replace. And will I not regret this move when it's mid-April and sleeting, and instead of being out running I'm online looking at friends' beautiful shots of gardens in bloom and green grass in Cambridge.

Because the grass is always greener, and all that...

(The exception to the rule is Kyoto, which I've always felt lived up to all my love for it. It will always be the first city of my heart, and one day I hope to spend some time there again.)
klgaffney: (Default)
[personal profile] klgaffney
Daily Toss for 06-24-2017. )

Raids!

Jun. 24th, 2017 10:18 am
healingmirth: Jayne from Firefly: "time for some thrilling heroics" (thrilling heroics)
[personal profile] healingmirth posting in [community profile] pokestop
As of last night, raids are now available to players 25 and up, and at a "wide variety of gyms" throughout the world. I've got two gyms in map-sight of home; one of them has a level one raid this hour, and the other has a level four raid coming up in a bit over an hour. Hopefully an achievable raid comes soon to a gym near you!

*edit* ha, and the third gym that's just slightly out of sight has.a level three raid in an hour and a half.

blathering about my suburban raid experience thus far )


Raid info from niantic: https://support.pokemongo.nianticlabs.com/hc/en-us/articles/115009004747-Raid-Battles

The Eaters of Light (DW S10.10)

Jun. 24th, 2017 03:09 pm
elisi: (We are all stories by immobulus_icons)
[personal profile] elisi
So, last weekend was very very busy, only saw this episode on Monday and have been vaguely attempting to write something in the days that followed.

It's a lovely, lovely episode, and deserves far better than these scattered thoughts, but I know tonight's episode will be quite something so felt the need to post SOMETHING, before the story moved on.

So here it is. Very basic, barely cover a quarter of what I'd like, but it's better than nothing... Oh and a great deal is Promethia's, literally.

Read more... )
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Posted by Emily Price

In today’s political climate, there’s a good chance you’re looking for less government-themed news, not more. However, if you’re looking for information straight from the source IFTTT (If this, then that) has made it super easy to stay up to date with its new Data Access Project.

Read more...

balsamandash: River Tam (Firefly) laying on the ground and looking up (ff] ghosts & clouds & nameless things)
[personal profile] balsamandash
I missed Midsummer, but I hope anyone who celebrated had a good one.

My brain has been doing weird things the last couple of days. I could definitely be worse, but it's still annoying, and also not making it easy to get stuff done. I'm hoping to fix that today, so we'll see what happens. I really want to watch things, but I keep telling myself to do things first, so that may or may not ever actually happen. Also on the list of things I can't do while getting stuff done: sleeping, reading, Flight Rising, and listening to the same two songs over and over.

I will learn how to focus someday. I swear I will. Maybe.
james_davis_nicoll: (Default)
[personal profile] james_davis_nicoll
Why YouTube did this seems unclear so I am just going to jump to a conclusion completely unsupported by the available evidence and assume this is yet another example of right-wing trolls gaming a site's complaint mechanisms.

Updraft by Fran Wilde

Jun. 24th, 2017 09:14 am
logisticslad: (Default)
[personal profile] logisticslad
My SF Book Club recently read Updraft, a first novel by local author Fran Wilde. It's a dystopian novel where people live in towers in the clouds and use constructed wings to fly between them. The main character is a teenage girl with a special power over the hideous flying invisible monsters that attack the people in the towers. She ends up discovering all kinds of secrets held by the mysterious Seekers who control the towers and engage in ritual human sacrifice and frequent duels to the death. I found the premise to be quite interesting, but the execution left a lot to be desired. First off, I did not like any of the characters. By the end of the novel, I could not have cared less as to who lived and who died. This was in part due to the structure of their society where no one could attach or bond well since one could die at a moment's notice. Second, while the world was presented as internally consistent, it made no sense in terms of actual physics. Had they attributed everything to magic, it would have been easier to accept, but since they did not, I kept thinking about how the flying could work, etc. Third, the economy of the world made little sense. Traders were described as flying amongst towers to exchange rare goods. But since no one ever went below the clouds, it was not clear where goods came from or how they were grown. In balance, I found the writing to be compelling and I wanted to know what would happen next. Overall, the group thought that this had some interesting ideas, but was plagued with first novel type problems. I'm curious to read the sequel, but I am not rushing out to buy it.

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