pebblerocker: Jenna Stannis from Blake's 7, looking cool (pilot smuggler rebel)
I think conversations between two bus drivers on a bus are the very best conversations in the world to overhear.
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
Do any of you know of any portable snacks that can be eaten quietly?

I've started my studies with a little 3-day preparatory course, and... doing brain stuff is very tiring? Physical work I can do all day, but sitting and listening and thinking is difficult to switch into. By morning tea time I was convinced we'd skipped our first break and gone straight through to lunch. Snacking more often might help, but I don't want to bother the others with rustly muesli bar wrappings or bags of nuts.

The woman next to me ate an apple today, amazingly quietly. I like apples, but for me to eat one half that quietly would consume all my attention.
pebblerocker: Jenna Stannis from Blake's 7, looking cool (pilot smuggler rebel)
I'm now getting clothes that my niece has outgrown instead of the other way around. She's twelve, and starting to get into Star Trek TNG after having finished TOS. Anyway, the kid is very nearly as tall as me and that's somehow surprising without being surprising at all, because I do know I'm short.

On the job front, I have given up doing my job because of physical incapacity, and I'm very glad I spent all that time earnestly reading people's Writings upon Disability because that took the edge off some of the feelings that caused. I have also given up applying for less physically demanding jobs because apparently ten years of turning up to the same job and being good at it isn't a useful thing to put on a CV. Instead I've enrolled in a free three-month full-time course in computers, starting next month. Wish me luck because I'm not sure I'm capable of the classroom thing.

My car has died. I'm very sad. It's still drivable but structurally unsound; it's very tempting to sneakily drive it one last time and hope nobody sees. But I can get to university on the bus, so it's not a situation that desperately needs rectifying.

I'm massively into writing Thunderbirds drawerfic and playing Sims 2, partly out of feeling dread that very soon I'll be studying and won't have time for hobbies. I'm also lifting weights a bit and finding that I actually have more visible muscles than I did as well as being able to lift heavier things, which is tremendously motivating.
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
I've seen several people in my circle return to Dreamwidth and start posting again in the last month or two, so it was starting to seem like a good time for the comeback tour/vanishing person amnesty. And then the Tumblr thing happened and we've got all the increased traffic and insightful meta and thinky thoughts about how fandom works, which is so intensely fascinating to me. In a weird way I really enjoyed LJ's Strikethrough all those years ago because of the conversations that came out of it, so this current fandom situation is excellent stuff for me.

Hello everyone, thank you to people who came back, hello to Tumblr refugees. My life has changed a lot recently in ways that are too complicated to discuss here and now; chief among them, ongoing unemployment.

My current fannish interests are Thunderbirds, chiefly the classic puppets but also the new animated made-in-NZ series; Starsky and Hutch, still; Merlin, a bit; and Star Trek, along with my niece (age just-turned-12) who is receiving a very correct education starting with the original series. She's got through all the original episodes and The Motion Picture, and we're planning on watching Wrath of Khan tonight. No spoilers! I still remember the reactor room scene with Kirk and Spock pressing their hands to the glass from the first time I watched it, which must have been when I was no more than five. She's going to be devastated. Spock is one of her favourite characters, along with Uhura and Chekov, and she's writing fic in a notebook she refuses to let anyone read.
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
For future reference: I bought blackcurrant-flavoured cordial because I like the colour and then I drank a bit of it and realised that what I really wanted was lemon or lime. This is not the first time this has happened. Now I have a whole bottle of blackcurrant to use up before I can replace it, and it's not as fun to drink as good old lemon barley water and is much riskier to spill.

Cause of this pattern of foolishness: I want to try everything. I don't like buying the same thing twice in a row, it feels like I could be missing out on discovering something I like even better. I am attracted to bright colours, and have a poor memory.

Conclusion: I need to work hard on remembering my actual preferences when trying to make a decision. Possibly about more things than just flavours of cordial.
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
I thought I could back a trailer reasonably well, given enough time. Turns out I can only back a trailer I can see. Using only the side mirrors to steer with is a completely different skill.

My partner's car looks like it has a reasonable glass area at the back... but it's high in the back and the angles are such that from the driver's seat, the back windscreen shows only sky. Apparently this is true for most modern cars - no wonder so many small children get squashed - and so I have even more reason to hope my beloved 1989 liftback rusts away as slowly as possible.
pebblerocker: Vila from Blake's 7: I have a very low pain threshold (vila pain)
UGH, Firefox has changed and everything is in a different place and all my extensions are gone again. Apparently they are using a completely new system for extensions which means they will no longer break every six weeks and won't have to be updated constantly! Which is good! But my gif stopper has gone, not updated to the new architecture, and that has made whole websites impossible to use.

It was such a good gif stopper, it loaded gifs by default but I could freeze them instantly with a hotkey I chose myself. So I could go and look at pages of funny cat gifs without having to right-click on anything or disable the extension, but if someone had an animated icon blinking next to the text I was trying to read I could make it stop just like that. Or I could watch someone's reaction gif loop once, so I knew what they were communicating, and then stop it so I could read the rest of the comments. The only option to replace it is a gif blocker, which is either on or off for the whole browser (not per tab like the old one) and you have to reload the page to get rid of the gifs after turning it on, and you have to right-click each gif individually if you want to unblock them. Ugh. [Edit: the placeholder image for any gif is the full width of the browser page and as high as it is wide. Yes, even if the gif it's replacing is a non-animated 16x16-pixel forum smiley. I think I have to learn to make browser extensions myself from scratch, using my very limited knowledge of BASIC from 1989.]

The other most crucial thing broken is Clearly, which I used to reload stupid pages in a readable format. It let me pick a nice muted background colour and big sans-serif text for comfortable reading, and got rid of all sidebar rubbish. It also often managed to get around websites with stupid lightboxes asking for your email address or telling you not to read any more of their articles this month. I have installed an extension called Reader which appears to do a similar thing. But despite its vaunted selection of 16 million colours, it doesn't appear to offer any way of opening up options to change the colours away from the default stark black-on-white...
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
I flew to Melbourne yesterday to be here for PAX Australia, and then spent today visiting family, and I'd only just recovered from a cold when we left, and so I am going into PAX with rather less energy saved up than I might have hoped. Despite my experience last year and my best intentions to try to take it a bit easier to avoid burnout...

... my schedule says there needs to be three of me or I'll miss too much of the fun stuff.

I hope to meet up with [personal profile] alias_sqbr at some point (yay!), and go to a lot of panels and see a lot of fascinating stuff and hopefully play some games as well. Cosplay is bigger on the Saturday so I'm sure there'll be an opportunity to get my photo taken with someone from the Star Wars cosplay club because last time I found out that being next to a real-life Star Wars character makes me feel four years old and ridiculously excited.
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
I started playing the guitar again a while ago, but then I had a hectic week and then was away from home for a few days, and now all that pain and effort is flaking off the ends of my fingers as the unused calluses begin to wear away. Should only take a few days of battering them about before they get the message to start growing thicker skin again.

It has been twenty years since I was learning those Chuck Berry riffs and finding my way around the frets and I'm amazed that some of it is still in the back of my brain, ready to use again.
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
Today in art requests from the smaller and more distant nieces:

"Draw a picture of yourself, auntie!"

So I did, with purple glasses and a purple hoodie and green shoes with red shoelaces, and I drew one of my arms waving to the viewer, and I asked for input on what my other arm should be doing, and they said I should be DABBING. Last year's memes have not expired at kindergarten, apparently. I managed to convince them of the difficulty of drawing a dab when one arm was already inked in and definitely not dabbing, and they reluctantly compromised on having me draw myself holding one of my cats in the other arm with his tail hanging down.

I think I do my best art at the request of nieces.

I Voted

Sep. 23rd, 2017 07:44 pm
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
Massive numbers of people have voted in advance this election. Lots of reminders for people to vote NOW over the last fortnight. That includes my brother, who is travelling outside his electorate today. I am vanishingly unlikely to forget to vote and I like the atmosphere of election day. I like walking to the local school and seeing people coming in and out of the polling booth; it's one occasion to walk around my area and feel involved in things.

And I like making my mark with the orange pen and getting my sticker. The first time I voted in a national election I accidentally got some orange ink on my finger in the booth, and since then I've made sure to come away with a bit of orange on me so I really feel like I've done my bit.

Beautiful sunny spring day today, that's good for turnout, and it sounds like the youth vote is up a bit, so there's some hope for progress. We'll see.
pebblerocker: Vila from Blake's 7: I have a very low pain threshold (vila pain)
I see that UK Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg is in the news at the moment and I am reminded of the dream I had weeks ago, before he was in the news for much, in which I was at Jacob Rees-Mogg's house while he was having a BDSM sex orgy party. I wasn't there for the party, of course*, I was hired to mend his pipes and that just happened to be the timing. I climbed under the sink and did all the plumbing and did an excellent job of it, and then Jacob Rees-Mogg very much wanted to be rid of me, but he had a buffet table of delicious baked goods which were there for the people he had invited to his house, so I got myself a fine bone china plate and loaded it up and ate cakes with enthusiasm while he stared at me in intense discomfort. Jacob Rees-Mogg was most upset that I was eating his cakes that he'd provided for his orgy friends, but technically he had invited me to his house to do the plumbing and so he couldn't ask me not to without being rude. I licked my fingers and picked up every crumb while ignoring Jacob Rees-Mogg completely and then I left.

I considered drawing this dream for NaArMaMo but it was too difficult. I would have had to go into somewhat more detail on the orgy part than my dream bothered to do.

*people are welcome to have BDSM orgy parties but I think doing them with Jacob Rees-Mogg shows extreme bad taste.
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
In the wake of the Great Photobucket Apocalypse of 2017, and after every other image host on the planet has already forbidden image hosting, I'm going to try out Dreamwidth's new image hosting. Here is a picture of a dragon I drew for my niece.
Read more... )
I currently have no job. Since being too busy at work and being drained after work has ruined my chances of doing NaArMaMo most recent years, perhaps I will do better at making art for a month this time around. On the other hand, it turns out that all my self-worth is in being able to work and so I have been mainly feeling miserable instead of doing amazing things with my new free time.
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
My niece and sister came to visit so I haven't watched any Starsky & Hutch for several days and I'm missing it. But my sister has been on a Due South binge and she wanted to introduce me to Ray Kowalski. I missed out on the Ray Wars entirely because I only ever saw the first two seasons (as did the rest of the family when Due South was first broadcast); my sister says she'd gone in with extreme scepticism, not expecting anyone to be able to replace Ray Vecchio, but new Ray has won her over. So with her endorsement I am willing to like this new Ray.

I think they did well introducing him by making Fraser even more puzzled than the audience. I don't know if having RayK take a bullet for Fraser the first day they met was a clever short-cut to making them believably partners, or just hilarious. I think Fraser is the best possible person to have his partner unexpectedly switched on him because he can see the good in anyone.

From screenshots I've seen wafting around the internet I had the idea RayK was appealing to the fanbase because he had blond spiky hair and was more attractive than RayV. I am not really seeing it. He looks like someone who might have been cute ten years ago and is now less so; he's also giving me trouble every time he changes clothes because until I get to know his face better he's very nondescript. I have to guess from cues like the way the camera follows him or if Fraser stands next to him or someone calls him by name. In s3e03 the guest star of the week was a man of similar age and build with light-coloured hair and I had no idea what was going on for the first half of it - in fact the guest star had a more distinctive face and I was able to spot RayK more easily by figuring that he was the one who wasn't that guy.

(I am choosing an appropriate episode of Starsky & Hutch to introduce my sister to in return.)
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
The Starsky & Hutch episode where Starksy gets shot in an Italian restaurant was most satisfying. I had been hoping for further hurt/comfort episodes, and wanting to see Starksy on the hurting end, and this was perfect. Starsky didn't get much to do in it except lie around and moan, but Hutch touched him and patted him and talked soothingly and worried about him all the way through, it was lovely. And the whole thing happened because they were so keen to go out to dinner together.
Read more... )
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
Starsky: I'll dress in, you know, the sort of clothes drug dealers usually wear, and we should have a cool car, maybe a convertible. Do you think drug dealers sometimes wear running shoes?

Hutch: My character's called O'Brien and I'll be from Texas and wear a huge cowboy hat - in fact I want the full cowboy outfit, I'll find one with plenty of rhinestones - and I'm going to chew gum all the time and be a dickhead, well, more so than usual. A Texas-sized dickhead. And I'm going to be massively racist.

Starsky: You do know we're trying to get the co-operation of a drug dealer who happens to be black?

Hutch: I'm going to be so racist. And I get to drive the convertible.

Read more... )
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
I cannot believe that Hutch went to a wedding rehearsal and brought Starsky with him (that's not the unbelievable bit, why would he go anywhere without him), and then introduced him to the Catholic priest as "my partner" and the priest asked for clarification. It's like something off BBC Sherlock, only at the time it would have been unthinkable to have the main characters of a major TV show be outright gay, so I find it fun queerbaiting rather than infuriating.
Read more... )
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
I was unwell last week so I started watching my way through Starsky & Hutch. I thought it would be fun (obviously, as I love buddy cops and it's the most important buddy-cop show of all time) but maybe slightly cheesy and not too emotionally traumatic. I expected to feel all safe because of the episodic format, knowing everything would be back to normal by the start of the next story. I WAS WRONG - about as wrong as I was last time when I thought Neon Genesis Evangelion would be non-traumatic giant robot fun.

It's not cheesy like I thought - the stunt work and the screeching tyres and the identical gunshot sound effect coming from three obviously different guns are a bit cheesy but the stories aren't at all.Read more... )
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
The new Wonder Woman movie gave me a lot more than I'd expected was possible - a superhero movie with a woman as the main character, getting most of the screentime and adventures, being a hero - and its downfall was that it showed me I could hope for something WAY BEYOND that. The first half-hour was ALL about women talking to other women and doing amazing superhero moves and having a history and family and friends and working together and riding neat horses, and it was everything I ever wanted; then men turned up and Diana went away from the beautiful sunny islands and spent the rest of the movie surrounded by muddy trenches and rubble and men. I spent the whole movie expecting all the other Amazons to come back into it and they didn't.

Also Steve Trevor spent a LOT of time telling Diana to stop talking and stop doing things because he knew best. The situation of her having no knowledge of the world outside her island could have been handled in a less un-fun way, I think. I can see they were aiming to have it lead up to a Big Scene where she stops listening to him and goes off to do some heroing with dramatic music, but, you know, she's a hero, we know she's gonna hero, it's impressive without having to watch her be squashed down by a man shutting her up over and over for AN HOUR before she gets to do the heroing.

My partner thought there was excessive use of slow motion during the fight scenes. I loved every second of it because I wanted to see a woman being a superhero on the big screen and I wanted to be able to see it happen. Last couple of Marvel superhero movies I've seen, the camera is jiggling around all the time the fight's going on so there's no way to know who's hitting who and it makes me feel a bit seasick so I just look to see who's standing up once the fight scene's over. It's all right with me if the camera lingers for a while on Wonder Woman leaping through the air and looking amazing.

There are no scenes of Wonder Woman being raped or threatened with rape. I thought I'd say because that's something I wanted to know before I went to see it.
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
It was Anzac Day this week and the entire town is a sea of paper poppies and plywood poppies and crocheted poppies. Poppies on trees and poppies on churches and poppies on kindergartens.

Outside a childcare centre I saw a noticeboard which said "In lieu of Anzac Day..." and I had to turn back and read it, because that is not a phrase one expects to see in these nationalistic times. Could it be that this particular childcare centre is run by people who thinks glorification of war is an inappropriate thing to teach small children? Perhaps they were planning a celebration of international friendship and co-operation in lieu of Anzac Day? No, it turned out to be a request for parents to bring in photos of soldier ancestors for the children to stick on a commemoration wall, written by someone who thought "in lieu of Anzac Day" was a fancy way to say "for Anzac Day".

Ten or fifteen years ago we didn't have this sort of nationalistic fervour. I remember when Anzac Day was just something old people did, people who had lived through wars, and newspaper columnists worried about the dwindling numbers attending dawn parades and whether the whole thing was about to die out. It's very strange how things have turned around.

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