erinptah: (pyramid)
This guy is safely back at the local shelter where he came from.

(Full details in locked posts -- if you didn't see them, and would like to be on a filter that includes stuff like cat drama, feel free to comment.)

The name on the shelter paperwork is Eli, so that's what I'm going to call him, not the name picked out by the roommate who brought him home and then wasn't around to take care of him.

Eli is super shy and super timid, but also totally mellow -- even when he was scared he never bit or scratched, just hid. In the three weeks he was at the flat, there was literally one time when he felt safe enough to approach a human on his own volition. Then he got spooked again, and there weren't enough days to re-reassure him before returning him to the professionals.

But I did get photos of him on the couch.



Petting for a sweet boy.



I hope he gets adopted by someone he can climb all over.
erinptah: Cat in a backpack (cat)
Linguistics links:

Nothing new under the sun: "in tibullus 1.8 (a poem about his boyfriend Marathus) has this line about “pugnantibus linguis” (literally battling tongues) which means that the idea of tongues battling for dominance in homoerotic fiction has been going on since at least the 1st century bce"

From Seaspeak to Singlish: cool English dialects and English-based creoles.

Hawaiian pidgin has a great all-purpose noun -- it's "you-know-what", "whatchamacallit", "so-and-so", and "the thing" all at once.

Cat links:

Before there were laptops, cats were happy to sit on our portable typewriters.

"I was right there in case he got upset — I was expecting him to hiss or growl or slink away. But then one of the ginger kittens started licking Mason’s ear, and Mason sort of leaned into it and closed his eyes like it was the most amazing thing ever."

erinptah: Cat in a backpack (cat)
The couch I'm sitting on to write this, the one I'm usually sitting on when browsing/coloring/ficwriting, is really old. My parents got it (with a matching set of chairs) when I was in high school. It's the one big piece of furniture I took when I moved to Massachusetts.

More interestingly, it's been sat on by every cat I've ever lived with.

And I have photos!

2003-2006: Tabitha )

2009-2010: Ziggy Stardust )

2010: Bingley )

2010 again: Darcy )

2013: Isis )

2017: Molly )
erinptah: (Default)
"On Sunday, May 8, Germany hit a new high in renewable energy generation. [...] Power prices actually went negative for several hours, meaning commercial customers were being paid to consume electricity."

Animal eyes span an incredible variety of weirdness. Also coolness. This mollusk has eyes made of rock!

"It may be that different animals arrived at different times. A 2008 study of Movile's only snail suggested that it has been down there for just over 2 million years. When it entered the cave, the ice age was just beginning, and the snail may have escaped the cold by going underground." (That's, uh, the species of snail, not a single really-old individual.)

"Psychologist Jackie Andrade of the University of Plymouth in southern England showed that doodlers actually remember more than nondoodlers when asked to retain tediously delivered information, like, say, during a boring meeting or a lecture."

"How many other people are learning Spanish, and where do they live? Duolingo recently answered such questions by running the numbers on their 120 million users, spanning every country on the planet."

"Coming to terms with the fact that he couldn't outrun a volcano, Landsburg decided to make his last moments on Earth count. He documented the eruption until the last possible second, then carefully rewound his film, placed his camera in his backpack, and lay down on top of it, shielding the equipment from the encroaching shower of magma and ash with his own body."

"Thanks to the colossal changes humans have made since the mid-20th century, Earth has now entered a distinct age from the Holocene epoch, which started 11,700 years ago as the ice age thawed." With a gorgeous gallery of ways we've altered our own bedrock.

"A giant pothole, the Devil’s Kettle, swallows half of the Brule and no one has any idea where it goes. The consensus is that there must be an exit point somewhere beneath Lake Superior, but over the years, researchers and the curious have poured dye, pingpong balls, even logs into the kettle, then watched the lake for any sign of them. So far, none has ever been found."

An animal shelter that used to have "unadoptable" cats now has a 30-day waiting list, thanks to hiring them out as mousers.

"As you can see from these pictures, Smoothie knows how to pose for the camera. Then again, it’s pretty easy for her. After all, while most of us have a best angle, EVERY angle is Smoothie’s best angle." This is a magical elf cat, you guys.
erinptah: (daily show)
Turning earthquake rubble into pseudo-Lego bricks, then using them to build new houses. Apparently they even meet serious construction safety standards.

Launching in 2016: a fast and (by all estimates) wildly effective ocean-cleanup array, designed to filter all that plastic we've been dumping into our waters.

Every article that discusses pros and "cons" of the SNAP program should open with this: "The USDA estimates that every dollar in SNAP spending generates $1.79 in economic activity. 'People think of it as a drain," says the Urban Institute's [Elaine] Waxman, "but it's an economic generator.'"

"The study by the Colorado Health Foundation found that the Medicaid expansion created 31,074 new jobs and added $3.8 billion in economic activity."

"Owner of Coastal Kitchen & Mioposto says [of raising the city minimum wage is] that he “certainly won’t open another business in our beloved Seattle”… then opens two more businesses in Seattle."

San Francisco cops talk a suicidal man down from a ledge...with the help of his cat.

Trump (and Ben Carson) are record-setting in terms of how many lies they tell. The silver lining is that, for politicians, both Bernie and Hillary fare pretty well.

"In an echo of the Biblical vision of beating swords into ploughshares, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department in California said [last July] it would melt approximately 3,400 confiscated firearms and use the steel as concrete reinforcement."

Some delight from the Onion: "Organizers confirmed President Obama has greeted heads of state from more than 2,000 alternative realities, a gathering of leaders that includes 139 different versions of himself, a parallel U.S. president Mitt Romney, a pulsing being of pure electrostatic energy, Earth-7491’s King Lyndon B. Johnson IV, and a hooded group of unspeaking figures known only as “the Council.”"
erinptah: (Default)

In reverse chronological order!

Books are Weapons in the War on Ideas: the librarians who worked with the army in WWI and WWII.

"...contractors removing old chalkboards at Emerson High School in Oklahoma City made a startling discovery: Underneath them rested another set of chalkboards, untouched since 1917." Historical penmanship and out-of-date multiplication methods ahoy!

"It may seem like a Halloween hoax fit for the eerie October holiday. But officials from the MBTA say the discovery of two tattered rags affixed to strange masks at Government Center Station is all too real."

"How a sexed-up viral hit from the summer of ’09—1909—changed American pop music forever." (Excerpts: "It was used in advertisements for everything from Broadway musicals to pretzels. It was translated by newspapers into Esperanto (“Ho! Vi kaprido!”). It was bellowed by a lovelorn Philadelphian as he leaped from a bridge into the Schuylkill River, attempting suicide. It brought scandal to a church in Geneva, Ill., when a prankster altered the hymnal, adding the line “but, oh, you kid!” to the lyrics of the devotional “I Love My God.”")

Millennial in China taking an excited photo with a bowl of rice. And by "millennial" I mean "circa 1900-1904." Next time you hear someone complaining about Kids These Days sharing photos of their lunches on Instagram, you can bring up this hard evidence that the generation from a hundred years ago would have done the exact same thing.

The first close-up shot in recorded film was from 1903's "The Sick Kitten". In other words, humans have been making cat videos literally for as long as it as been possible to do so.

Check out these 19th-century warnings about that most morally-degrading of modern habits. It leads to crime, mental anguish, weakening intelligence, and corruption among the children! Clearly, respectable people should have nothing to do with...novel-reading.

erinptah: (sailor moon)

I've been scouring the Internet for a nice margay plushie, and have come up empty. (Even something like an ocelot that looked close enough would work, but no.) How is it that, for a cat with an adorable elegant face like this, the only stuffed version on the market is this little terror?

---

Rubella is gone from the Americas! Go vaccines!

---

Jon Stewart is literally buying a farm to be a shelter for rescue animals. The man is a Disney prince, I swear.

---

"$5 million in property damages. 140 injuries. Nine police officers injured. 17 police cars set on fire. Countless local businesses looted and vandalized. Over 1200 criminal charges."

---

Wisconsin wants to micromanage the kinds of cheese poor people can buy. Allowed: un-fresh mozzarella. Not allowed: fresh mozzarella! Muenster and provolone are in. Swiss is out! Cheddar is okay if you like it mild or medium. Sharp or extra-sharp, though? How dare you waste your benefits on exactly the same product with a slightly different flavor for exactly the same price!

(We all remember that food assistance benefits the economy, right? The USDA found that $1 in food assistance translates to $1.84 in GDP, and an independent study from Moody's calculated the number as $1.73. Help out businesses by helping their customers, and you can watch the wealth grow upward and outward.)

---

Has the Sherlock fandom implosion stopped yet? I don't even want to look.

A fan in their late 50s points out that it hasn't been that long since the mildest and most G-rated of m/m was a shunning offense. Another fan compiles a whole bunch of research on how sexual fantasies do not translate into IRL behavior, and, specifically, sexual fantasies about dangerous things do not inherently make a person dangerous.

And, look, it's true that (unlike general gay stuff) there are a lot of kinks you need to handle carefully. Especially when it's something as radioactive as shotacon and lolicon -- it's not about being ashamed, it's about having a certain amount of emotional intelligence. Be conscious of where and how you're posting. Tags and warnings are good. The locked-post function on Dreamwidth, the content warnings and age limits available on Deviantart, and the warnings and viewer-limiting options on the AO3 are all great tools to limit your audience. Not perfect, but great.

So it's notable that this wank literally started with a in-person conversation on an 18+ panel at a convention. That's probably the highest level of "minors not enabled to view this content" that fandom offers. Surreptitiously filming one of these panels, posting select parts of the video online, and spreading them around the Internet is a great way to demonstrate how little you truly respect and support people's efforts to keep certain things away from uninterested and/or underage eyes.
erinptah: (Default)
...or, science continues to be awesome.

"A warning for future space colonizers: Babies born in space might not ever figure out how to deal with gravity. Jellyfish babies, at least, have to deal with massive vertigo on Earth after spending their first few days in space."

Visualization of how cats see the world versus how humans do! Much better night vision, of course; but as it turns out, way worse distance vision.

The sun decides to reverse the polarity of the neutron flow. ...okay, not exactly, but it is literally reversing its own polarity.

This is either the real-world precursor to hard-light holograms, or lightsabers. Possibly both. Exciting either way!

"The mini-livers that Organovo made are just half a millimetre deep and 4 millimetres across but can perform most functions of the real thing. To create them, a printer builds up about 20 layers of hepatocytes and stellate cells – two major types of liver cell. Crucially, it also adds cells from the lining of blood vessels. These form a delicate mesh of channels that supply the liver cells with nutrients and oxygen, allowing the tissue to live for five days or longer."

"It’s still in the 'so crazy it just might work' stage, but these microalgae-powered lamps, invented by French biochemist Pierre Calleja, could absorb a ton of carbon from the air every year. That’s as much as 150 to 200 trees."
erinptah: (disney)
tumblr_msen6vqSCt1r69a5mo1_1280

My online-meme-cat f/f OTP has finally met in person!

And there was much rejoicing. Well, rejoicing from everyone except Grumpy Cat. But that's only to be expected.
erinptah: (disney)
Or, a roundup of fun & silly links.

Cats walking on stuff: a history. Medieval scribes and ancient brickworkers had the same problems you have keeping the cat off your keyboard.

"I get it–I'm disabled too. You're out of spoons, I'm out of spoons… However, the kitchen is also out of spoons, and I did the dishes the last ten times."

Procrastination - The Musical! GPOY.

On the other hand, someone has finally articulated the power of harnessing procrastination as a force for productivity.

Game of Thrones house sigils or the Internet. House Wikipedia: "Time Lost, Wisdom Gained"

A map of your grocery store. 100% true and accurate.

If media covered America the way we cover foreign cultures. A sample: "Yet another massacre has occurred in the historically war-torn region of the Southern United States – and so soon after the religious festival of Easter."
erinptah: (daily show)
You know, sometimes it feels like I take as long to organize these links into elegant topical groupings as I do to actually save the things...

Japanese cat weight lifting: grabbing progressively bigger fish and dragging them away! The winning cats end up waddling away, dragging these gigantic fish they can barely get their teeth around. It's adorable.

Thirty-two-thousand-year-old flower recovered from the tundras of Siberia...and yes, they got it to bloom.

"Many of these schools [rely on textbooks that] teach their pupils Bible-based "facts," such as the existence of Nessie the Loch Ness Monster and all sorts of pseudoscience that researcher Rachel Tabachnick and writer Thomas Vinciguerra have thankfully pored over so the rest of world doesn't have to."

Elaborating on one of the specifics in that link: "What do Christian fundamentalists have against set theory?" It's pretty mind-boggling.

Atomic theory as expressed in English with all the non-Germanic words removed.

Cross-linguistic color theory! How languages develop color words and in what order, how language affects our ability to distinguish colors, and a massive XKCD-originated survey of color names.

32 innovations that will change your tomorrow: inventions set to come out within a few years that will affect your everyday life. Some seem stupid or gratuitous (hands-free hair-washing? Is it really that hard to shampoo?), but some are particularly useful (medical-detection sensors for your teeth! Synthehol!).
erinptah: (waldo-carmen)
Questions from [personal profile] sarcasticsra, who was doing a meme about them...

1) Is there a different frame of mind you need to be in to work on a comic as opposed to writing a fic?

Definitely. There's a rhythm to comics; you need a punch line, or, if it's a serious sequence, some kind of dramatic/cliffhanger-y moment -- something to pull the reader on to the next page. It's especially pronounced in a three- or four-panel strip. Fics have an overall shape in terms of Freytag's pyramid, and in long fics it also applies to individual chapters, but the pattern doesn't get as fine-grained as that constant, strip-by-strip heartbeat.

Continued under the cut. )
erinptah: (sailor moon)
Catvertising! This is clearly a Viridian Dynamics project, y/y?

Perspective. The universe, to scale.

Awesome abandoned monuments. They look like sci-fi set pieces, like crashed spacecraft, or the ruins of cultures too ancient to be related to anything we know...but they were built in the '60s and '70s.

Chocolate planets! I'd say I want some, but they look too good to eat.

The world's tallest treehouse! Ten stories high! Amazing.

Look, it's a baby Internet: what some of the world's biggest websites looked like on launch date. Google is surprisingly similar. Amazon is surprisingly ridiculous.

Mysterious, anonymous, and AWESOME paper sculptures appearing randomly in libraries around Scotland. Less anonymous, no less amazing: landscapes sculpted from carved-out books.

Multilingual collection of words that have no translation to English. Or so they claim. Forelsket is described in poly circles as NRE; pochemuchka has an equivalent in elephant's child; pena ajena is embarrassment squick; taarradhin sounds a lot like a win-win situation; guanxi has the definition that many English-speakers have affixed to "karma". And certain people would recognize backpfeifengesicht if you said "BBC's Sherlock" (although using German for this kind of list is cheating anyway, as all their nouns are compound anyway).
erinptah: (winding road)
Gene-sequencing the microbe that caused the Black Death. I can hear the mad scientists cackling now.

A historical view on the subject provides some much-needed perspective on whether women's sexuality is "more fluid" than men's.

Koalas begging for water. Adorable :D

Dinosaur feathers! Well-preserved ones, even!

Shinto shrines, often built on historically tsunami-safe areas, preserve a startlingly accurate record of where the recent floodwaters broke.

A planet with two suns has been discovered! It's a Saturn-size giant orbiting a binary star system.

Light-up kittens! Seriously, it's part of a program of genetic modification with the ultimate goal of fighting feline AIDS, but...light-up kittens!
erinptah: (Maggie)
The local cat, Ziggy, is slightly startled to see me. He's gotten even bigger since I last saw him -- a real burly tough guy ♥ Probably weighs about as much as both of [personal profile] stellar_dust's cats combined.

(Speak of the devil: he just jumped up on the bed. My blanket may be getting commandeered.)

I'm in my old room, which looks eerily bare with half my furniture gone, but all the books I left behind are still safely in the cabinets. I've been itching to reread Vampire Game ever since that post a while back when I recced it to all and sundry; maybe I'll spend my night doing that.

Dinner was cold pizza, fruit salad that had seen better days, and a slice of leftover cheesecake. (Far superior to the Velveeta I had for lunch. Straight out of the pot, too -- bachelor padding FTW.)

I brought up how I've been watching the new Battlestar Galactica; turns out Mom watched the original series when it first aired. Not only that, we both have a healthy appreciation for Starbuck :3 Netflix has both, so we plan to watch some in the morning, once Dad is awake and can join us.

I am thankful for: all of the above :D

(ETA: My bed is still neatly made, but Ziggy has clawed his way under the comforter. He is now lurking there, a mysterious lump ready to attack anything that pokes him, never mind that he can't actually reach it through the fabric. He is like a very ineffective sandworm.)
erinptah: (Kitten)
Meme #1, from URLAI:

"sailorptah.dreamwidth.org is probably written by a female somewhere between 26-35 years old. The writing style is personal and happy most of the time."

Huh.

Meme #2:

If you read this, you're tagged. Take a picture of you in your current state, no changing your clothes or quickly putting on makeup. NO PHOTOSHOP. Show your dwircle/flist the real you.



My hair is extremely short right now, the result of a hairdresser's valiant attempt to undo the damage of a year's worth of self-administered cuts. There's a chunk above my ear there where it's still weirdly short; she thankfully decided not to trim all the rest to match that one bit.

The cat is Darcy. Along with her sister Bingley, she belongs to my roommate [personal profile] stellar_dust. Have some more pictures of Darcy.

Cozy cat is cozy. )
erinptah: (Default)
There was a mouse in our laundry room today. The cat chased it around for a while; he managed to catch it a few times, and even carry it around in his mouth once or twice, but he always let go/put it down. When free, it spent a lot of time hiding under the couch.

I finally got a plastic container over it and carried it outside. The cat has been lurking around the couch ever since, apparently waiting for it to come out again :>

More collected threads from anonmemeland:

Advice and strategies for one anon on how to cope with a dilemma: "I feel like if I can't explore my own gender issues through fiction I'll never be able to distance myself enough from denying them to work them out. But whether I get called out for fail or not (and I might!), I don't want to have to justify my story by discussing my own issues with random fandom people."

A pithy call-out of the recursive nature of the "free speech means I'm free to criticize you" line of logic.

An alternately lyrical, filthy, pointed, and soaring discussion on the lack of a common vocabulary for describing female genitalia — or, as the OP summarizes it, "Let us be brave! Let us forge a new world! Let us create a pussy lexicon right here, right now!" There's no real consensus, but by golly it is fun to read.

Moments of lol: the obligatory boom-de-yada filk, the associations of the acronym "SJ".

This thread about "how would you save fandom from the self-righteous edge of social justice?" turns into a fascinating whirl of Fandom Perspective from outside the LJ/DW bubble. My favorite: "Introduce a few well-meaning progressives/hippies into fandom in general around, oh, the late 90's/early 2000s when online fandom was finding its feet, and let them loose."

And this thing of beauty puts the grudgy/wanky/nasty aspects of the meme in perspective, acknowledges the aspects that I've found worthwhile thus far, and, as if that weren't optimistic enough, ends on a song.
erinptah: (Integra)
In the spirit of recognizing that worthwhile stuff does come out of [livejournal.com profile] fandomsecrets once in a while...

These community-polling-type threads came up during last month's f!s anon meme, and I thought the stats were worth preserving. (I know it would be easy to spread similar polls through [community profile] metafandom, but f!s attracts a different demographic in the first place.)


*

(1) "First fandom you were ever invested in?" A couple of people mentioned several, or included qualifications, so here's the simple tally of everything that came up:

3 - Harry Potter
3 - Thundercats
2 - Star Trek
2 - Yu-Gi-Oh!
1 - Cats
1 - David Tennant
1 - Digimon
1 - Final Fantasy
1 - The Matrix
1 - Pirates of Dark Water
1 - Pokémon
1 - The Powerpuff Girls
1 - Ranma 1/2
1 - ReBoot
1 - Roswell
1 - Sailor Moon
1 - Star Wars
1 - The West Wing
1 - Wheel of Time
1 - The Wizard of Oz
1 - The X-Files
1 - Zoids

I would love to be able to correlate the fandoms with the current ages of the people who mentioned them. Especially since polls I've seen have suggested that I'm close to Average Fandom Age, and I'm familiar with the source material for almost every single one of these.


*

(2) "what age did everyone start reading fic? what about slash/porn/etc. if applicable?" A scramble of numbers; some people separated reading and writing, a majority mentioned RPF of some sort, only a few differentiated femslash. Going by when people said they started reading (and taking the smaller number if they gave two, e.g. "13" for "discovered slash at 13/14"), here's the breakdown for the categories most mentioned:

Average age people started reading...
Fic: 12.1
Slash: 14.1
Porn: 14.2
RPF: 15.9

Median age of same...
Fic: 11.5
Slash: 14
Porn: 14
RPF: 15.5

The next time someone tells me "but we're all adults here!", I'm pointing them back to this post.

(Note that "there are kids reading, but it is not my responsibility to look out for them" is a totally legitimate statement. It's only when people say "there are no kids reading in the first place" that I get twitchy.)
erinptah: (Maggie)
I've spent most of the past 24 hours Getting Stuff Done. By which I mean a bunch of tiny little nagging website updates that have been at the back of my mind for months, if not years. It's kind of disorienting.

Also disorienting is the fact that I don't feel like I've gotten much done at all. I'm thinking this may be because I haven't gotten any feedback on it. I knew the Internet was getting me used to instant gratification, but I didn't realize it was quite that bad.

I might be able to assuage it by posting some big impressive fic, but even if I had something finished, everyone's on vacation and unlikely to reply.

Ngh.


...Okay, enough of my floundering. Have a meme.


you know how sometimes people on your friends list post about stuff going on in their life, and all of a sudden you think, "wait a minute? since when were they working there? since when were they dating him/her? since when!?" and then you wonder how you could have missed all that seemingly pretty standard information, but somehow you feel too ashamed to ask for clarification because it seems like info you should already know? it happens to all of us sometimes.

please copy the topics below, erase my answers and put yours in their place, and then post it in your journal! please elaborate on the questions that would benefit from elaboration. one-word-answers seldom help anyone out. (:

Answers under the cut )

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