ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 Here's a good writeup about the TV series Black Sails.
ysabetwordsmith: (gold star)
"Cut and Restored Rope" is a basic trick in stage magic, with many variations.  My partner Doug found this one, which is the best I've seen.  It's more impressive if you are already familiar with the more common presentations.
ysabetwordsmith: (gold star)
My partner Doug tipped me to this video of a domino spiral.  It is epic.  I took one look at it and thought, "How do you even firewall that?"
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Toy Like Me is a campaign for greater diversity in toys, focused on diff:abilities.  They have a Facebook page and a new website, the latter including a guide to diff:abled toys you can buy.  

It's kind of like a little slice of Terramagne, where such toys are now ubiquitous -- most lines have at least one diff:abled item.  You can thank Whammy Lass and Eugene Jacoby for sparking that trend with their wounded toy soldiers
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Here's a look at diversity in Star Trek. I'm particularly taken by Armin Shimerman's experience regarding perceptions of the Ferengi.

However, I must note that "having equality" is a white perspective on Lt. Uhura. Whoopi Goldberg's reaction was, ‘Come here, mum, everybody, come quick, come quick, there’s a black lady on television and she ain’t no maid!’ Dr. Martin Luther King's description was, "You prove that we survive."  Those are very different values in the character.
ysabetwordsmith: (moment of silence)
Kenny Baker, the performer who played R2-D2 in Star Wars, has passed away

Since Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker) has already given the best possible eulogy, I will simply echo his here: "He WAS the droid I was looking for!"

I grew up watching those movies, but I always had a different perspective than most people, and one of the things I loved about them was seeing droids -- artificial intelligences -- portrayed as people,  even though they were often the butt of the joke.  R2-D2 helped save the galaxy, and I think part of that was made possible because he looked like a garbage can and talked like a machine, so people overlooked him as a possible spy.  We are the thorn in the foot, little buddy.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Here's an interesting discussion about the relationship between fans and creators

My thoughts:

1) Without creators, there would be no content.  Somebody has to make this stuff, and it's a lot more work than merely coming up with an idea.  Fans should respect the hard work that creators do.

2) Without fans, there would be no market.  A creator without an audience is just a hobbyist.  Creators should respect the investment of time, money, and energy that fans make through consuming entertainment.

3) There are many different ways to produce and consume entertainment; what consenting adults do is up to them.  For sake of everyone's sanity, however, people should be clear about what they are doing and what they want.  Creators and fans who wish to interact should do so, and communicate to established desired parameters.  Crowdfunding, for example, is a high-feedback approach to making fun stuff.  Creators and fans who do not wish to interact should not be pressured to do so; boundary violations cause problems. 

4) Most of the problems described in the article come from a lack of respect whether that's in society, creators, fans, or frequently all of those.  Which brings us to Wheaton's Law: Don't be a dick.

5) I love crowdfunding partly because of  the difference in opinions.  Yes, it can get fractious at times.  I try to be patient with that, because it also goes to places I'd probably never find on my own.  My fans routinely spot things I've included, because my holographic observation picks up and records things I haven't paid close enough attention to that I noticed the details yet, but when pointed out, there it is.  Case in point, Shiv's history of sexual abuse; I had known that he had a rough past, but it was a reader who spotted that specific detail.  The signs were already there.  For another example, discussions of the relationship between Calliope and Vagary have brought up fascinating points about interpersonal violence, transness, appropriate force, responsibility, what therapy is for -- all kinds of stuff.  When I started the arc between those two characters, I had no firm expectations for how it would go; the developments have come from readers who want to see various things.  If that means a certain amount of tugging back and forth, it's cool, because I think that often mimics the way things go in real life when people have mixed feelings.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem is spillover from the March 1, 2016 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] dialecticdreamer and [personal profile] technoshaman. It has been selected in an audience poll as the free epic for the June 7, 2016 Poetry Fishbowl meeting its $200 goal. This poem belongs to the Shiv thread of the Polychrome Heroics series.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Our air conditioning was not enough to keep the house cool today, so we left in search of cooler places. We went to see "X-Men: Apocalypse." It was awesome.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
My partner Doug tipped me to Amazon's television having easy listening videos with music and pretty pictures.  Not quite perfect yet, the motion was a little fast on the one I saw, but they're in the right ballpark.  If you like the idea of Happy Hearts Television from Terramagne, this is similar to their Soothing Sounds nature sounds/videos channel, and a little like Soft Serenades (instrumental music with abstract imagery). 
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
I have decided that it's time for another round of "Poke a Bigot in the Eye." This time, it was inspired by Marvel declaring that Captain America is a Hydra agent, which I mentioned recently.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
I was appalled, but not surprised, by Marvel's recent storyline that Captain America is Hydra.  Yes, they're really paddling that douchecanoe for all it's worth.  I am pleased to find a post by a Jewish writer, who speaks with more cultural right than I could, explaining why this is so very wrong. 

It's not just about the current fetish for brutalizing and/or distorting heroic figures, this persistent desire to destroy all that is good and hopeful in the world, to convince everyone that they can't have  heroes.  It's that this twist hurts living people  as well as mocking the dead.  That is not okay.

Art is power.  You use it responsibly, because if you don't, you're a bully.

I really hope, in some just and well-deserved afterlife, the people who perpetrated this meet with Steve Rogers so can ... explain ... a few things to them.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
While researching for a poem, I found some fun lists ...

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
We watched the movie today. This review is in generalities rather than specifics, so not really spoilery, but I'll fold the page just in case.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)

We went to see "The Jungle Book" today.  It was awesome.  This is easily my favorite live-action take on the story, the best balanced between humorous and serious elements, and of course, Scarlet is the best Kaa ever.  If you have not yet seen it, I rate this movie most highly recommended.

For supper we went to Brixx.  This is one I had looked up in advance, and I had two reactions to the menu:
1) Aaaaand now I'm hungry.
2) I am going to starve to death between two bales of hay.

We did eventually decide what to order, though.  The garlic sticks are excellent, the meatball appetizer quite good.  The draft root beer is made with real vanilla and sassafras,  which is almost impossible to find anymore; I have had root beer as good, but none better.  The rosemary chicken with wild mushrooms pizza is mouthwatering.  I had to take off half a point because the rosemary, being whole instead of chopped, was sharp enough to stab.  (There's a reason why it's always supposed to be chopped, and that is it.)  But it had the best, strongest, most umami shitake mushrooms I have encountered.  For dessert we got the s'mores pizza, also delicious and it comes in six slices just like the rest of them.  While this is not cheap pizza, neither is it as exorbitant as gourmet pizza often is; it's a good price for its class, and you absolutely get what you pay for.  We definitely plan to go back and try more things.

And I'm still stuffed.

ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This is the bonus post for April. I've written a variety of things in Polychrome Heroics that feature busking or buskers, along with some similar activities, so I thought it would be fun to explore what it's like there.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
In case you missed it, I posted a new Love Is For Children story late Friday/early Saturday, so I know some folks may need to scroll back to find that.  "What Little Boys Are Made Of" tells how Tony learns the craft of blacksmithing.  Begin with Part 1.  
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This story fills the "meet the parents / family" square in my 1-4-16 card for the [community profile] trope_bingo fest.

This story belongs to the series Love Is For Children which includes "Love Is for Children," "Hairpins," "Blended," "Am I Not," "Eggshells," "Dolls and Guys,""Saudades," "Querencia," "Turnabout Is Fair Play," "Touching Moments," "Splash," "Coming Around," "Birthday Girl," "No Winter Lasts Forever," "Hide and Seek," "Kernel Error," "Happy Hour," "Green Eggs and Hulk,""kintsukuroi," "Little and Broken, but Still Good," "Up the Water Spout," "The Life of the Dead," "If They Could Just Stay Little," "Anahata," "When the Wheels Come Off," "Against His Own Shield," "Coming in from the Cold: Saturday: Building Towers," and "Coming in from the Cold: Sunday: Shaking Foundations," and "Coming in from the Cold: Monday: Memorial Day."

Fandom: The Avengers
Characters: Tony Stark, Howard Stark, Master Tom, Obadiah Stane, Master Ewan.
Medium: Fiction
Warnings: Howard Stark's A+ Parenting. Child abuse and neglect. Rebellion. Tony Stark's misspent youth. Brief references to underage drinking, sex, and other unwise activities. Obie. Because Obie Is Always a Warning.
Summary: According to canon, Tony Stark is a blacksmith. This is how that happened.
Notes: Craftsmanship. Competence. Gentleness. Trust. Creativity. Friendship.

Read Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4.

Here ends "What Little Boys Are Made Of." Thank you all for sticking with the series this far! I love your input. Final thoughts on the story overall are welcome, in addition to reactions on this specific chapter.

I also have a list of favorite photogenic scenes from the whole series for fanartists to consider, partly compiled from audience requests.

A note on feedback: While it's not necessary to comment on every post I make, remember that I don't know who reads/likes things if nobody says anything. Particularly on long stories, I've discovered that I get antsy if there's nothing but crickets chirping for several posts. So it helps to give me feedback at least once, even if it's just "I like this" or "This one doesn't grab me." First and last episodes are ideal if you rarely feel inspired to comment in the middle.

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