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Bon mots and random thoughts. Geek magnifique.
Troopers: Trucker pulling his own tooth caused accident that congested I-20/59 near Tuscaloosa Monday | -
Troopers: Trucker pulling his own tooth caused accident that congested I-20/59 near Tuscaloosa Monday |
"Distracted driving was responsible for the miles-long traffic jam on I-20/59 East near Tuscaloosa Sunday night and Monday morning, but the driver wasn't looking at a cell phone-- he was trying to pull his own tooth, according to an ALEA State Trooper report. The accident, which happened just before 10:30 Sunday night near the interstate's mile marker 79, was caused when a self-employed tractor trailer driver took his hands off the wheel to pull a loose tooth from his mouth. "The driver stated he lost control when he was pulling a tooth with his hands," the report reads. "He had the tooth in his shirt pocket as proof."" - Jessie from Bookmarklet
"The truck left the roadway, traveled down the slope leading into a ditch then jackknifed into nearby trees, according to the report. No one was seriously hurt, but the effort to recover the truck caused road crews to set up a detour and completely divert eastbound traffic off the interstate between mile markers 76 and 79 for several hours. The 57-year-old driver's name was redacted from the State Trooper's report." - Jessie
Taiwanese woman blows up toilet trying to kill cockroach | Metro News -
Taiwanese woman blows up toilet trying to kill cockroach | Metro News
"When a young female employee at a clean-up firm in Taiwan was called to an office and stumbled upon a cockroach, she didn’t hesitate to act. First, she squashed the bug with a swift thwack of her shoe. Next, she wrapped the cockroach in tissue paper and crushed it. Then she set it on fire." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
"Just to make sure it was gone for good, she then tossed the cockroach into the toilet – forgetting that she’d just cleaned it. The result of the flaming cockroach and the cocktail of detergents in the toilet bowl was an extremely potent homemade explosive, which promptly went off a bang – blowing the toilet apart and stunning an office full of employees next outside." - Jessie
Due diligence. - Micah from FFHound!
"BURN IT WITH FIRE" usually is not a good idea. - John (bird whisperer)
Would've been doubly awesome if the cockroach survived all that. - rönin from FFHound!
One of the new profs is co-posted to another department called the Center for Host Defense and I'm having a really hard time not calling it S.H.I.E.L.D.
What I Get Paid For My Novels: Or, Why I’m Not Quitting My Day Job | Kameron Hurley -
"This is a tough business to stay in, especially if you don’t have a solid day job or a partner with same. I hear folks say that the 4-5 book place is where a lot of folks start to make money, and it’s true that this is the first year I could earn what I’d call a living wage if I quit or was laid off. But I know too much about publishing – and the changing tastes of the readership – to go all in making $30-40k a year when I’ve spent this long slogging to get to $100k through a combined workaholic income stream of novels, day job, and freelancing. You don’t give all that up just because you had one positive year. If I’ve learned anything about publishing it’s that you should always hope that one great year is the start of an upward trend – but you should never count on it. I was poor in 2007. I have no interest in going back if I can help it. And that’s why I’m not quitting my day job." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
Interesting. Friends of mine both quit their jobs this year. She's a librarian who became an author. He's a urban planner who has become a weaver. They're leaving the Bay Area and moving to a 6 acre farm in PNW. Granted, their Oakland house has appreciated so much since they bought it that that should provide some $. And they have scrimped a bit (though not too much... they took a lot of vacations abroad). They're taking the leap, though. They don't have kids so that helps. - Spidra Webster
Someone in my writers group self-publishes 6 or 7 books a year while working 60+ hours a week. I don't know what her income from book sales is, but even if it's substantial I don't think I'd have that kind of stamina. - Jessie
She's lucky her husband had a really good job. She was able to move from FT to PT. She was very dedicated about her writing time...treating it like a job. She went from self-published to being offered a contract. Nothing's sure by any means, but they're giving it a go and all their friends, including me, are pretty envious. - Spidra Webster
That's fantastic! And yeah, I think in their case not having kids probably helps. I don't know if I would be brave enough to have me and my spouse both in fields with uncertain incomes if we also had a child depending on us. - Jessie
One of my co-workers publishes several romance novels a year. It is nice extra money and she does pretty well, but not lucrative enough to have as a full-time job without benefits. - Jennifer Dittrich
Yeah I think the person in my writers group also does romance. Apparently it's a pretty good market, but yeah, still not enough to give up the day job. - Jessie
Yes. My friend does erotica (a little more explicit than romance titles although she also attends romance writer conventions). - Spidra Webster
It's amazing how much of tap class I spend trying not to kick myself in the shins.
Shin guards, they aren't just for soccer anymore - Steve C Team Marina
At least the routine is cute. Well, it's cute when the instructor does it. So it's only cute if you're a professional and hugely pregnant. But still. - Jessie
Marijuana vending machine to debut in Seattle - KBOI 2 -
Marijuana vending machine to debut in Seattle - KBOI 2
"Just like chips and soda, Seattle-area residents are now able to buy marijuana from a vending machine. American Green, the company behind the ZaZZZ marijuana machine, says it's the "first age-verifying, climate-controlled, self-service dispensary." The machine will make its debut on Tuesday, February 3, at Seattle Caregivers." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
as in the real stuff or is that the name of some new food/drink? - Halil
I think it's the real stuff. Marijuana is legal in Washington state. - Jessie
Did Archaeologists Just Find Miguel de Cervantes, 400 Years After His Death? | Smart News | Smithsonian -
Did Archaeologists Just Find Miguel de Cervantes, 400 Years After His Death? | Smart News | Smithsonian
"Miguel de Cervantes was kind of a big deal in sixteenth-century Spain—after all, his book Don Quixote gave birth to the modern novel (and still has the sales to prove it). But though historians know he died in 1616, they’ve never been quite sure about where he was buried. Family crypts all over Europe contain mummies, valuables—and a hodgepodge of random bodies. Between the high death rates of days gone by and lax record-keeping, it’s often difficult to determine who lies in any given vault. That’s what happened to Cervantes: though his will stipulated that he be buried in a Madrid convent, his final resting place was never known for sure. But that might have changed this weekend, when archaeologists found pieces of a casket with Cervantes’ initials in a crypt at the Convent of the Barefoot Trinitarians. The find was clustered among the bones of at least ten individuals, one of whom could be Cervantes. Coffin-makers used metal tacks to form the initials “M.C.” on a now-brittle, decaying piece of wood." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
"If the initials on the coffin do stand for Miguel de Cervantes, it will mark the culmination of a search that has sometimes seemed as delusional as Don Quixote himself. This quest has involved impassioned pleas for funding, negotiations with elderly nuns and the use of radar and other high-tech tools." - Jessie
"It will also delight Fernando Prado, a historian who has spearheaded the investigation. Early last year, Prado told Reuters what we can expect if his hunch is correct: If in this place where there are so few people buried we find more than one man older than 50, who has an injury in his left arm and a gun wound in the chest, I will eat the Bible." - Jessie
Immigrant spouses happy with life in Taiwan: poll - Taipei Times -
"Immigrants married to Taiwanese nationals are mostly happy with life in Taiwan, even though their average household income is less than half the national average, to a census released yesterday by the Ministry of the Interior showed. A total of 498,368 foreign-born spouses, including naturalized immigrants and foreign nationals, call Taiwan home. At 67.6 percent, more than two-thirds come from China, Hong Kong or Macau; another 28.1 percent are from Southeast Asia, predominantly Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines and Cambodia, according to ministry statistics. In the once-in-five years census of foreign-born spouses, 92.9 percent of respondents described life in their adoptive country as “happy” (幸福), and 87 percent said they do not have trouble communicating with their Taiwanese family members despite cultural and linguistic barriers. The survey found that the average monthly household income in families with new immigrants was NT$46,173, less than half the national average of NT$98,073." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
Don't even think about it, Jessie. ;-) - Anne Bouey
Publishing: Spotify for books | The Economist -
Publishing: Spotify for books | The Economist
"“BEWARE of the person of one book,” said Thomas Aquinas, a medieval friar and author. The risk of encountering such unscholarly types is rarer in modern times. Digital devices can hold dozens of e-books, so people can carry around a whole shelf of reading material with them. Now a new crop of e-book subscription companies is offering bibliophiles the chance to consume as many books as they like, from a huge range of titles, for a flat fee of around $10 a month. It is a bit like having a whole lending library in your pocket—but with no need to return the books. In America the main providers of e-book subscriptions include Amazon, Oyster and Scribd. Similar companies have sprung up in Spain, Scandinavia and China. Their reach is limited so far, but it is growing. Around 4% of book buyers have tried an e-book subscription service in America, according to Nielsen, a research outfit." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
"The subscription model has already taken off in music and television, with providers such as Spotify and Netflix. Consumers have shown an increasing preference for such all-you-can-eat bundles, as opposed to buying each item separately. That worries book publishers and authors, who still make most of their money from sales of single copies. So far they have approached subscription... more... - Jessie
"Most subscription services have agreed to pay publishers each time a reader gets a certain way into a book—typically around 10%—and the fees are about the same as if they had sold it as a one-off download. This makes the subscription services’ business model similar to that of gyms, says Andrew Rhomberg, an e-book expert: they are relying on lots of people signing up but not making... more... - Jessie
"So unless the e-book market changes in unexpected ways, subscription services may have only a limited impact on consumer-book publishing. Subscription may prove most popular in niches such as children’s books: parents may sign up their offspring, hoping that a broader choice will make them read more. Those with younger children may welcome not having to read out the same few books repeatedly at bedtime." - Jessie
"Most subscription services have agreed to pay publishers each time a reader gets a certain way into a book—typically around 10%—and the fees are about the same as if they had sold it as a one-off download." I'm a little concerned this will lead to an influx of books that have really gripping first chapters and then fall apart; I've already run into a couple of these. Maybe in the... more... - Jessie
I still question the problem (at least in the U.S.) that ebook subscription services attempt to solve, other than "I want to make more money." I was rereading a 2014 Big Report on the future of books in The Economist, and realized after a while that the paper seems remarkably tone-deaf on some subjects, including this one. - Walt Crawford
'Course, if the UK government continues to undermine public libraries, such services might have a brighter future there and in nations that lack good library systems. Although the "ebooks for kids" model runs up against kids apparently having a *stronger* preference for print books than adults. - Walt Crawford
Walt - on the consumer side, for me, it solved the relatively small selection problem I've often run into with my local library. I don't blame them for not keeping whole back catalogs of quasi-popular mysteries from 40 years ago, but I like to read them, and they're often either out of print, or too expensive to justify buying. I've read about 17 so far this month from Amazon's program. - Jennifer Dittrich
OK, that's a fair example, and I don't doubt there are enough similar examples to make a small business or three. (With Amazon's propensity to keep losing money to drive other people out of business, "business" may be the wrong term.) I wonder whether it makes sense for most readers and most publishers, though. (17 old mysteries in one're a *reader*. I barely average 4-5 books a month total.) - Walt Crawford
And, of course, I'm entirely willing to admit that I could be completely wrong on this. I frequently am. - Walt Crawford
I can totally see your point though, on the publishing side - and far more people are going to be utilizing their library memberships rather than paying a subscription. I'd had Oyster before this (the newer Nero Wolfe mysteries got my attention) and I know I'm probably an outside case. I figure for me, this is a good investment of my monthly book budget, but someone who reads maybe one or two? Not so much. - Jennifer Dittrich
Transgender reforms to take more time: ministry - Taipei Times -
"Reform on gender reassignment regulations would require more time and discussion among different government agencies, the Ministry of the Interior said yesterday. The decision ran contrary to a reported agreement between Minister of the Interior Chen Wei-zen (陳威仁) and Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Ting Shou-chung (丁守中) on Dec. 25 last year, in which the ministry promised to lay out a new draft for gender reassignment regulations within one month — that is, by Sunday. Ting said that the ministry promised to abolish a controversial surgical requirement for applicants who want to legally change their registered gender — a requirement that has long been criticized as “inhumane” and forcing transgender people to undergo cheap, unsafe surgeries." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
"Despite removing the requirement for surgery, the proposed draft on new regulations drew serious criticism, as it barred married people or those with children from applying for gender reassignment. Transgender activist Zoe Ye (葉若瑛) — who was born male, but identifies as a transgender woman — said that a closer reading of a statement issued by the ministry revealed that it only... more... - Jessie
From Annihilation to Acceptance: A Writer’s Surreal Journey - The Atlantic -
From Annihilation to Acceptance: A Writer’s Surreal Journey - The Atlantic
"[T]he letter from Sean McDonald at Farrar, Straus and Giroux includes a unique plan to publish all three novels in one year. Sean thinks the first book will leave readers wanting more and he doesn’t want to keep them waiting. As he’ll explain a couple of years later to The New York Times, “You can end up with angry and perplexed fans. I think people are more aware of series storytelling, and there is this sense of impatience, or maybe a fear of frustration. We wanted to make sure that people knew that there were answers to these questions.” As I read Sean’s initial offer, all of the details sound right. My bullshit detector doesn’t go off even once. Knowing that all three books will come out one after another, I feel less pressure to make Annihilation entirely self-contained, which is important to the integrity of the novel—especially when the whole series grapples with the idea of something beyond human comprehension. I’ve also always wanted to be published by FSG. To be honest,... more... - Jessie from Bookmarklet
I'm reading these right now. - Katy S from iPhone
BBC News - China probes officials in 'salamander banquet' scandal -
BBC News - China probes officials in 'salamander banquet' scandal
"Chinese authorities are investigating allegations that senior security officials ate a critically endangered giant salamander at a lavish banquet. A local newspaper said journalists it sent to the restaurant to report on the meal were later beaten up as they photographed guests leaving. The meal reportedly took place in the southern city of Shenzhen last week. At least 14 policemen have been suspended over the incident, local media report." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
"Guests were also seen being given bags of fish as they left. An official was heard saying the fish were taken from a reservoir where fishing is prohibited. " - Jessie
Women Murdering Men In Western Art History -
Women Murdering Men In Western Art History
"One of the greatest aspects of ancient Greek civilization was the persistent belief that there was nothing women liked better to do than assemble a gang, air their tits out, and roam the countryside beating men to death. This was, sadly, a myth, but it did not stop generations of European painters from imagining what savage bands of female murderesses might have looked like." - Now people just think this is something feminists do :| - Soup in a TARDIS
I think a lot of people thought this was an intramural sport at our college. - Jessie
There is a reason every year vagina dentata was suggested as a new mascot - Soup in a TARDIS
They don't even have to change that much. La Semeuse just needs to hold a severed arm or something. - Jessie
Maybe the seeds she sows could be little severed heads? - Soup in a TARDIS
Ooooooh could we get that on the official sweatshirt? - Jessie
I know a few graphic artists.. - Soup in a TARDIS
Even made the funny books. Scroll about halfway down: - MoTO: #TeamMarina
“Sponsored” by my husband: Why it’s a problem that writers never talk about where their money comes from - -
“Sponsored” by my husband: Why it’s a problem that writers never talk about where their money comes from -
"Here’s my life. My husband and I get up each morning at 7 o’clock and he showers while I make coffee. By the time he’s dressed I’m already sitting at my desk writing. He kisses me goodbye then leaves for the job where he makes good money, draws excellent benefits and gets many perks, such as travel, catered lunches and full reimbursement for the gym where I attend yoga midday. His career has allowed me to work only sporadically, as a consultant, in a field I enjoy. All that disclosure is crass, I know. I’m sorry. Because in this world where women will sit around discussing the various topiary shapes of their bikini waxes, the conversation about money (or privilege) is the one we never have. Why? I think it’s the Marie Antoinette syndrome: Those with privilege and luck don’t want the riffraff knowing the details. After all, if “those people” understood the differences in our lives, they might revolt. Or, God forbid, not see us as somehow more special, talented and/or deserving than them." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
Brave article and very little snark in comments - WarLord
"In my opinion, we do an enormous “let them eat cake” disservice to our community when we obfuscate the circumstances that help us write, publish and in some way succeed. I can’t claim the wealth of the first author (not even close); nor do I have the connections of the second. I don’t have their fame either. But I do have a huge advantage over the writer who is living paycheck to paycheck, or lonely and isolated, or dealing with a medical condition, or working a full-time job." - Jessie
Agreed. I think it's hugely important for people who are lucky enough to write/paint/follow an artistic career full-time to acknowledge that in most cases, there's some other source of money that allows them to do that. - Jessie
I wish she'd talked a little more about childcare, too, but I suspect that at this stage it's not as much of an issue for her. Still, it's one thing to have a spouse who is willing to work full-time to support your writing/artistic career. It's another to have a spouse willing to work AND take on or arrange for childcare so you can have a few free hours each day to create. - Jessie
Police: Drunken driver hits squad car during DWI arrest | -
"GRAND PRAIRIE - Texas Police in a Dallas suburb say a drunken driver crashed into an empty squad car while officers were busy dealing with another drunken driver they had pulled over. Grand Prairie police say a third driver then crashed into another empty squad car, but this driver wasn't drunk or high." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
"Department spokesman Lyle Gensler says the driver of the first vehicle to hit a squad car was also arrested on a DWI charge, but the third driver was only ticketed. The only person hurt was the second driver, who suffered minor injuries." - Jessie
Aliens fall in love with local railway - Taipei Times -
Aliens fall in love with local railway - Taipei Times
"The Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) yesterday introduced its first science fiction-themed train, featuring two “visitors from outer space desperate to travel on Taiwan’s tracks.” TRA Director-General Chou Yung-hui (周永暉) said the train, called “Evolution No. 1001,” was remodeled from the one previously used by the agency’s directors to inspect railway routes, or serve as a temporary command center when the nation experienced a major natural disaster or catastrophic traffic accident. The train’s registration number is DSC100l and its nickname is “TRA One,” after the name of the well-known presidential carrier Air Force One." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
"Inspired by the train’s registration number, the two “aliens” have been named “Mr Ten” and “Miss One.” They were created by designer Akibo Lee (李明道), who wanted to tell the story of aliens trying to find a place to settle down by going on a railway tour. “I am a father myself and I hope that more parents would take their children to travel with the aliens,” he said. Mr Ten has a huge... more... - Jessie
"The couple were particularly impressed by the railway system in Taiwan and decided to take a part-time job at the TRA, he said. The alien couple can be seen on the exterior of the train as well as on restroom doors, no-smoking signs, wallpaper and seat headrest covers. The railway operator will also sell memorabilia featuring images of the aliens, including lunch bags, lunch boxes and backpacks." - Jessie
'World's largest barbecue' can cook four tonnes of meat - and you could own it - Telegraph -
"If you've had enough of freezing temeperatures, wearing socks in bed and looking like Sir Ranulph Fiennes on an Arctic trek every time you leave the house, it's time to start planning for the summer. And what better way to start organising your first sun-filled event than by buying the world's largest barbecue. Texas residents Terry and Kim Folsom are selling the 40-tonne, 76ft long cooker, which is so big they carry it around on a big rig truck, for $350,000 (£233,170) on eBay. The "Undisputable Cuz", as the couple call it, can cook four tonnes of meat at a time from a surprisingly small fire. But if you're not sure a 24-door barbecue with seven chimneys is enough to make your summer party go down in history, the trailer is also fitted with a walk-in cooler, beer taps and space for a television and stereo." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
Frenchman creates Valentine's Day fart pills - The Local -
Frenchman creates Valentine's Day fart pills - The Local
"Christian Poincheval, 65, from north-western France has added a special Valentine's Day product to his array of scented flatulence pills designed to make wind less odious. His new ginger-scented pills, mean loved-up couples don't have to worry about committing any faux-pas on the most romantic day of the year. He chose ginger because of its fabled aphrodisiac qualities. "Say it with love, flavour your farts with ginger," reads the advert for the pills." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
So just take this and the sparkle pill and you're all set for that special day. =p - rönin
Calvin Klein needs to jump on this idea and sell one that smells like their Eternity for men cologne. - April Russo
why does Santa care about the smell of my farts? - Kevin Johnson
Robber falls from ceiling into police custody -
Robber falls from ceiling into police custody
"HOUSTON – A burglar looking to make a quick score at a Family Dollar had quite the fall Sunday morning. The burglar had climbed on the roof at the store and managed to weasel his way into the ceiling, where he promptly fell in front of a nearby Houston police officer. Houston police received a call of a potential burglary at the store, and a nearby unit pulled up just in time as the suspect fell through the ceiling. The officer immediately ordered the suspect to stay on the floor, where he was taken into custody." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
Gunfire meant for iguana terrifies vacationing family | Crime | KeysNet -
Gunfire meant for iguana terrifies vacationing family | Crime | KeysNet
""Run, someone is shooting at us," Robert Wells, 54, said to his wife Ruth. Ruth Wells, 49, told detectives she whisked her children off the resort's beach, and the family locked themselves in their hotel room, according to a Monroe County Sheriff's Office Offense report. The family did hear at least one gunshot that may or may not have hit the dock. But it wasn't the Wells in the crosshairs. Rather, an iguana perched on the seawall of a house next to the Pines and Palms Resort at mile marker 80.4 was the intended target. And from the blood Sheriff's Office deputies found on top of the seawall, apparently it was a successful reptile hunt." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
Amazon Prime Will Be $72 Tomorrow, Here's What That Gets You -
Amazon Prime Will Be $72 Tomorrow, Here's What That Gets You
"On Saturday January 24th, Amazon will make its excellent original series Transparent free to stream, even for those without Amazon Prime. More importantly though, Amazon is discounting Amazon Prime, the best deal in tech at $99, to $72 for the day. Prime is basically never discounted, and $72 is cheaper than the previous $79 that the service went for for years." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
:O - Jessie
Not sure if it's still worth it for me to renew. Ever since tax has been charged for California residents, I haven't ordered as much through Amazon. - Rodfather
Wait, so can I renew at the $72 rate now instead of paying $100 next month when my membership is over? - Anika
Anika, one commenter said they contacted support to ask that, and got a $27 credit. Might be worth a shot. - Stephen Mack from iPhone
Thanks for that. I must have comments blocked because I didn't see any on that link. - Anika
No matter which link I follow to find the $72 deal, Amazon says $99. - Greg GuitarBuster
I thought I read it was just for new members. - Laurie Boots from Android
I just looked. "After your free trial, Amazon Prime is just $99/year." - bentley
I emailed customer service and got a really fast response (like in under 20 minutes) that they'd give me the $79 rate when mine renewed next month and refund me $7 (not sure why they have to do it that way, but whatever works) - Sir Shuping is just sir
Apple's New China Store Has One Hell of a Beautiful Facade and a Great Story to Tell | Adweek -
Apple's New China Store Has One Hell of a Beautiful Facade and a Great Story to Tell | Adweek
"The new Apple Store in China unites ancient and contemporary design elements to striking effect—its modern steel-and-glass exterior draped by a simple yet elegant mural that contains the text, rendered in traditional Chinese characters, of a 2,000-year-old poem. "The lines in calligraphy need to have life in them," artist Wang Dongling says of his creation in the new two-minute Apple video below. "They need to have aesthetic feeling. They need to have a kind of magical energy endowed by nature." Sounds like something Steve Jobs or Jony Ive might have said about the look and feel of Apple's products. So, Wang's vision seems well suited to the iconic brand, which opens its newest store tomorrow in Hangzhou, the capital of Zhejiang Province in Eastern China, situated on West Lake." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
"Despite its vintage, the poem, "Praising West Lake in the Rain," has a distinctly modern flavor: "Shimmering water on sunny days/Blurred mountains through rainy haze/West Lake is like the beauty, Xizi/With light or heavy makeup, always beautiful."" - Jessie
"/West Lake is like the beauty, Xizi" I think that's supposed to be Xisi. Can anyone tell me who wrote this poem? I can't read handwritten script. - Jessie
I keep finding references to the poem's extreme age, but nothing about the author. Given the time, perhaps the author is unknown? - Soup in a TARDIS
My coworker came to the rescue! She says the author is 蘇軾(蘇東坡) So the poem must only be about 1,000 years old. She says this is the full text: 水光瀲灧晴方好 / 山色空濛雨亦奇 / 欲把西湖比西子 / 淡妝濃抹總相宜 - Jessie
She says the Chinese title is 飲湖上初雨後晴, something like "Drinking on the lake in the rain" (my own translation, not hers) - Jessie
Alan Menken tells stories behind 7 classic Disney songs | PopWatch | -
Alan Menken tells stories behind 7 classic Disney songs | PopWatch |
"“Friend Like Me,” Aladdin (1992) “We didn’t know who was going to play the genie when we wrote the song. We were looking at the character as black, a hipster, and I suggested a Fats Waller, Harlem stride-piano style from the ’40s. When Robin Williams was suggested, my first thought was ‘Can he sing like Fats Waller?’ Robin learned every note. He was working on Hook at the time, and he would come in after being stuck in a harness all day and sit at the piano and learn. When we went into the studio, we got exactly the Fats Waller performance we wanted, and then everyone said, ‘Okay, but now can we let Robin do his thing?’ He was amazing. That trumpet wah-wah-wah was supposed to be from an instrument, and he made it vocal. He took ahold of the creative process, both on that and ‘Prince Ali’ especially. My God, he went crazy on ‘Prince Ali.’ He was doing the Thanksgiving Day Parade, Arab-style.”" - Jessie from Bookmarklet
Woman told to break into theme park by 'god or aliens' | Daily Mail Online -
Woman told to break into theme park by 'god or aliens' | Daily Mail Online
"A couple broke into a theme park that was closed for the offseason near the South Carolina-North Carolina line, and the woman told investigators that God or, perhaps, aliens told her to do it. Francis Greene, 30, and Jason Lee, 42, were arrested Friday night after a security officer at the Carowinds theme park found their truck abandoned in the parking lot their 8-month-old son. Greene told police upon her arrest that she'd heard 'voices from God telling her to go see the park.' Her story would later change to reflect a different sort of revelation, the Charlotte Observer reports." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
"She would later inform police that 'the voices that she thought were from God were actually extra-terrestrials, and that they wanted her to leave her body behind and come with them.' Her presence on Earth notwithstanding, Greene would finally tell police she 'decided against that because she wanted to stay with her family.'" - Jessie
The god/alien was a great big Moose that talked with the voice of Chevy Chase. "Ride the Whipper Snapper Roller Coaster." they said. - Me
How To Tell If You Are In A High Fantasy Novel -
How To Tell If You Are In A High Fantasy Novel
"The Elders would like a word with you. The Ritual is about to begin. Something that has not happened in a thousand years is happening. You are going to the City. There is only one City. It is only said with a capital C. No one needs to bother saying the name of the City. It is the City. Certain members of the Council are displeased with your family’s recent actions." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
"You have red hair. You wear it in a braid. Your father was a simple man, and you don’t remember much about him – he died when you were so young – but you remember his strong hands, as he fished or carpentered or whatever it was that he used to do with them." - Jessie
"It is the first page, and you are already late for something. Your mother affectionately chides you as you gulp down a few spoonfuls of porridge; she will be dead by page forty-two." - Jessie
"The real trouble began the day you arrived at court. Every last nobleman hides a viper in his smile. How you long for the purity of life in your village, which is currently on fire or something." - Jessie
"Someone is eating an apple mockingly." x_____x Michael and I had a convo about that once. - Alix May
"There is one body of water. It is called the Sea. The Great Sea, if you are feeling fancy." - Soup in a TARDIS
The Endless Sea. *is super fancy* - Jessie
Things I explained in English class today: "Bless your heart."
The postdocs wanted to know if there was a phrase in English that sounded positive but actually wasn't. This was the first thing that came to mind. - Jessie
Then they wanted to know, if someone said this to them, whether they should punch them. - Jessie
"With all due respect" your opinion is crazy. - Joe
Haha thanks Joe. Any others? - Jessie
"that's interesting..." - ellbeecee
"Great story, bro." - Jennifer Dittrich
^great^cool - Stephen Mack from iPhone
"Thank you for sharing" is another one. - Corinne L
Isn't that nice. - Heather
Conversely, they asked if there was a negative phrase that had "mercy" in it since that's such a positive word, and I came up with "May God have mercy on your soul." They said that sounded very refined and they would probably thank someone who told them that. - Jessie
"Lord, have mercy" when said with the right intonation can mean, "You about to get yo ass beat in a minute." - Anika
Hahaha thank you Anika, they should probably know that one. I will tell them at the next class. - Jessie
An Investigation of the Biodiversity of Disney Sidekicks -
An Investigation of the Biodiversity of Disney Sidekicks
An Investigation of the Biodiversity of Disney Sidekicks
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"But what about the animals that are “just” animals, the ones that are the least anthropomorphized and (largely) incapable of speech, but are still important characters in their own right? In the Disney films of yore, does their non-speaking status give them license to act truer to their real-life animal counterparts? In some ways, no. The shared role of many Disney sidekicks – to take charge of all of the worrying that the protagonist doesn’t have the time or inclination for or, conversely, to get into all the mischief that the main character shies away from – means that the same personality gets doled out to many critters regardless of their species. Take Meeko, Pocahontas’s raccoon buddy, and Abu, Aladdin’s little simian friend – their gluttonous, mischievous, yet loyal qualities have strong similarities, happy to help their human friend, but probably stuffing stolen food into their cheeks or little vest first. That being said, there have tended to be moments when it is clear that... more... - Jessie from Bookmarklet
"Take Meeko, Pocahontas’s raccoon buddy..." Nope, let's not do that. #nopenopenope - Jessie
Irish grandma busted for possessing cocaine at bingo hall - SFGate -
"Helen Heaphy's number came up at the bingo hall. The prize was a trip to court. The 50-year-old grandmother pleaded guilty Wednesday to two counts of possessing cocaine for sale or supply after Irish police caught her with the narcotic outside a Cork bingo hall. Cork District Court Judge Leo Malone accepted her lawyer's plea for clemency citing her family obligations and her possession of a relatively small amount of the drug worth 350 euros ($400). Heaphy insisted she was holding the cocaine for an unspecified friend." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
"Malone fined Heaphy 750 euros ($870) but gave her no jail time, despite having two prior convictions for drugs possession and obstructing a police narcotics unit. She even was allowed to go back to playing bingo at the hall after the owner relented." - Jessie
Bump. Oh wait. - Eric - ill subliminal
How Fashion Helped Defeat 18th-Century Anti-Vaxxers - The Atlantic -
How Fashion Helped Defeat 18th-Century Anti-Vaxxers - The Atlantic
"In 18th-century Europe, smallpox was a scourge feared by kings and commoners alike. It was highly contagious, grossly disfiguring, and often fatal. But it was also preventable. Smallpox inoculation—which by then was the norm across Asia and the Middle East—was introduced in the West by Lady Mary Wortley Montagu. Herself a smallpox survivor, the English ambassadress to Turkey had witnessed the practice in Constantinople, and upon her return to England in 1718 she became its biggest advocate. Initially, London society found the practice shocking, but by the end of the century, inoculation had been adopted throughout most of Europe. France was one of the last holdouts. Though inoculation was common in northern Europe by the early 1770s, it was still regarded with suspicion in France, and with good reason: Improperly performed, it could result in infection and even death." - Jessie from Bookmarklet
"On May 10, 1774, King Louis XV died after a two-week illness—an inexorable, excruciating, and very public demise. We rarely hear about the 10 other courtiers and palace servants who died during the same outbreak. But the new king, Louis XVI, was sufficiently alarmed that he took the controversial step of submitting to inoculation on June 18, 1774. His two younger brothers, the Comte de... more... - Jessie
"The milliners of Paris, attuned to current events that could be translated into quick profits, commemorated the momentous event with an allegorical headdress dubbed the pouf à l’inoculation. Perched atop a woman’s powdered and pomaded coiffure, it depicted the serpent of Asclepius, representing medicine; a club, representing conquest; a rising sun, representing the king; and a... more... - Jessie
"Crucially, the pouf à l’inoculation wasn't an explicit critique of the 18th-century anti-vaxxers, but simply a visible expression of support for inoculation. Instead of picking a fight, it presented inoculation as something normal and harmless. And because the pouf was worn by the fashionable elite of society, it went one step further, making inoculation look not just normal, but also cool." - Jessie
Re-introducing wolves to Ireland: could we? Should we? - Ireland's Wildlife -
Re-introducing wolves to Ireland: could we? Should we? - Ireland's Wildlife
"The grey wolf, Canis lupis, was once reasonably common in Ireland and existed on all parts of the Island. The last wolf in Ireland was probably killed in or around 1786 but small populations or individual wolves may have existed into the early 1800’s. Before English rule in the country wolves were hunted, mainly by the ruling classes, and plenty of wolf skins were exported to Britain, but there seems to have been no coordinated attempt to exterminate them. During English rule this changed, and people began to view wolves as a troublesome species and targeted them for extermination. During Cromwell’s rule bounties for wolves were initiated and so began the complete removal of the wolf from the Irish landscape. The wolf itself was once one of the most common land based mammals on the planet, and existed in the whole of the Northern hemisphere and on the Indian subcontinent. Sub species also existed in parts of Africa and South America. As human populations across Europe grew the wolf... more... - Jessie from Bookmarklet
"Fast forward nearly a century to 2015, and talk of re-introducing wolves to Ireland. I’ve heard plenty of people arguing for re-introduction, or supporting it, but there are many complex issues that need to be considered before a re-introduction could even be considered. Many people consider wolves the epitome of true wilderness. Perhaps a pang of guilt for our role in their... more... - Jessie
"The most important aspect in all this discussion needs to be the welfare of the wolves themselves. Wolves for re-introduction here in Ireland would be sourced from multiple populations to give an initial genetic diversity. More wolves would possibly need to be added later to maintain this genetic diversity and prevent inbreeding, although wolves often disperse to avoid this. Even if... more... - Jessie
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