jmc_bks: (GK_Not Impressed)
- After three years of successfully resisting being saddled with a crackberry, I lost the fight today.  A BlackBerry Torch was delivered to me at work.  My argument was that in the event of an emergency, the bb was useless -- I could respond to emails but every program needed to do substantive work requires a Citrix secure login.  Alas, I have been overruled.  It's shiny and pretty, and the touch screen is going to be scratched or marred very quickly because it didn't come with a case or any sort of protective covering.  Why?  Who knows.

+ Apparently I *am* hosting dinner on Friday.  I guess that means I should figure out a menu?  Maybe beef stew again, since it turned out well the first time and is pretty simple.  I can pick up the ingredients that afternoon or even on Thursday.

~  First batch of no bake peanut butter bars is done.  Now I need one loaf of banana nut bread, at least two batches of cracker candy, and then one more batch of PB bars.  Guess I know what I'll be doing tomorrow night and Wednesday evening...

-  Why isn't Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy playing at the Landmark near me?  Do people really still want to see the Bella/Edward trainwreck?  Ten screens and only one movie is playing that I'd be willing to pony up for (The Descendants).

:/  The hospital "informational statement" (not a bill to me yet, but what was sent to the insurance company) arrived for my surgery and hospital stay.  More than $20,500.  For the second iteration; the bill for the first hospital stay was already billed separately.  Holy crap!  Once again, I am thankful for my insurance.
jmc_bks: (meninas)
My travel budget is allocated for the rest of the year:  Texas in October and November, then I'm homebound until 2012 unless I use miles/points for hotel and buy cheap bus or train tickets by booking way in advance.  Which is probably what I'll be doing, because I want to see these shows on Broadway or Off Broadway:
  • Seminar (November through March)
  • The Book of Mormon (probably not until January)
  • Bonnie & Clyde
  • Chinglish
  • Richard III (not until January)
  • King Lear (October or November)
  • The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs (October or November)
Unrelated:  my current favorite dish at the local?  Tempura asparagus.  Yum.

I've belatedly discovered yet another cop show, Rookie Blue.  A lot of the acting is horrible, and the scripts are cliche-ridden.  And yet I've watched most of Season 2 online.  Its only distinguishing features are its setting -- Toronto -- and one of the actors.

I've got a bunch of books waiting to be read (as usual) but feel no urge to pick any of them up.  Instead I've been paging through AO3 for fanfiction in my favorite fandoms that I may have missed or ignored.
jmc_bks: (Suits)
First, since it is Monday, it is time for SBD.  Which I posted over at WordPress.  What arrived recently, what to do with a book that gets carried around but never read.

Next:  did you watch the Emmys last night?  I did not, and was pleasantly surprised to learn that Kyle Chandler won for his role of Coach Taylor in Friday Night Lights.  He and Connie Britton were the heart and soul of that show, and it's nice to learn that he got some industry love for it.  Would've been nice if Britton had, too.  My only question is whether Chandler's hair will get a mini Emmy of its own -- I swear the hair was a character all by itself.

C:  I'm catching up on all the Davis Cup matches that were played over the weekend.  And seriously, Nadal must've taken his Djokovic frustration after going 0-6 for the year out on the French team.  As Brad Gilbert would say, he took Richard Gasquet and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga out to the woodshed.  Giving up ten games over six sets?  It's ridiculously good...and made up for the frighteningly bad doubles match played by Verdasco and F. Lopez.  

C+:  I want to go to Spain the first week in December for the DC finals.  But my budget will not allow for it.  Also, since I've got a trip planned for February, it's somewhat unnecessary.  Except it's Davis Cup.  Finals.  And the opportunity to see Nadal and Ferrer play on clay.  Against Nalbandian and Del Potro.  I'm anticipating *epic* five set matches.

D:  (That unhappy face is intentional):  Netflix.  Oh, Netflix.  I was an early adopter.  And now I'll be one of the million or so users who will drop you.  I don't stream many movies, primarily because I get distracted by other things available online.  I dropped down to the not quite lowest DVD plan primarily because I like catching up on cable TV series appearing on channels I don't subscribe to (HBO, etc.) through your service.  I get that you're feeling crunched by cable providers who want to squeeze users (and thus you) for high usage rates, which streaming demands, and that your relationship with Starz and with various studios is no longer the money haul that it once was.  But inasmuch as you don't care about my monthly budget, I don't care about your PE ratio or ROI.  I'll be return the DVD in my possession and exploring other viewing options, thanks.  Best of luck with your new bifurcated business plan.  
jmc_bks: (Ray in b&w by meeks00)
+  The [livejournal.com profile] we_pimpin Fall Festival fics have been posted.  A lovely anon (I have a guess about who based on style and vocab) wrote "From Sea to Shining Sea" for me.  The amazing [livejournal.com profile] schlicky worked hard as coordinator, doling out assignments and wrangling late entries.

+  Saw "Contagion".  Great cast, a lot of very good acting. (It's petty, but I felt a kind of glee as Gwyneth Paltrow's character died early; her holier-than-thou attitude really irrirates me.)  As a non-science person, the virus hunt seemed realistic to me, at least much more realistic than the last virus hunt movie I saw -- "Outbreak", which had so many things wrong with it even from a lay perspective. 

+  Finished reading three books:  New York to Dallas by JD Robb; Headhunters by Jo Nesbo; and Married with Zombies by Jesse Petersen.  Reviews may be forthcoming, or perhaps just drivebys.

-  There's a whole empty beach out there, including at least 200 square yards unoccupied to my right; why do random strangers set up within five feet of my umbrella?  Seriously?

~  I slept twelve hours last night.  Accidentally.  I laid down with a book at 7pm planning to read until 9pm (Law & Order: UK) and woke up at 1am then 5am then 7am for good.  I had no idea I was that tired.


jmc_bks: (flaming june)
I posted yesterday for SBD over at WordPress, writing a little bit about Chris Owen's Prove It and genre labels/expectations.

Sam Waterston is going to be King Lear, if you're interested in seeing Jack McCoy as the mad, blind king.

My DirecTv receiver is dead.  I may have killed it by leaving it on accidentally.  Or maybe it died of old age (8+ years).  Or perhaps a power surge during the electrical storm last week?  The tv is fine, but the receiver is kaput.  The debate now is whether to go subscription-free, relying on Hulu and YouTube and streams.  Sports and BBC America are weighing heavily against it though.
jmc_bks: (star fort kinsale)
+  Clusterfluff ice cream from Ben & Jerry's -- yum.  If you like fluffernutter sandwiches, you'll probably like Clusterfluff.  PB ice cream with swirls of peanut butter and marshmallow and chunks of peanuts and caramel.  I accidentally melted a pint of it today while grocery shopping and running errands.  Fortunately for me, is refroze fairly well :)

-  What happened in Norway is terrible.

-  Seriously, American politicians?  

-  A person who had a large impact on American politics and foreign policy in terms of use of the military for humanitarian aid died over the weekend.  But since he didn't OD or get headlines at TMZ, very few people seem to have noticed.

+  Friends with Benefits wasn't bad.  Mila Kunis and Justin Timberlake have pretty good chemistry on screen.  The repeated use of a flash mob?  Eh.  The editing was a little choppy, too.  But it was mildly entertaining and a good way to avoid being outside in 110F weather.  

-  Straw Dogs remake?  Why?  The trailer alone is full of offensive, sexist, ugly tropes.  Country > city. And yet the country is full of losers leading disappointed/disappointing lives.  Education = effete.  Critical wife = bitchy, deserves to be punished.  Being fired for being an asshole always should be responded to with violence.  And attacking your former employer at night with high powered rifles is the most reasonable response.  I think a lot of True Blood fans (women) are going to go see this movie for Alexander Skarsgard, and they are going to be unhappy with the character he plays, who is a redneck rapist.  (I say this because the PR seems to frame his character ambiguously, and when asked about the character, he said it isn't fundamentally a bad man, just disappointed with how his life has turned out.  Because, y'know, being disappointed with your life makes rape acceptable?)  Yeah, not a movie I'm going to be paying to see, thanks.
 
-  Also, WTF, LJ?
 
-  I've watched a couple more episodes of the third season of True Blood.  What a train wreck.  Stick a fork in me, I am done.

 
jmc_bks: (armada4 - 08 Davis Cup)
I had to sneak peeks at the score of the Nadal/Del Potro match during the lunch break for IASPR and the presentation on the "Erotics of Property".  I felt vaguely guilty, but not guilty enough to stop.

Also, \o/ for Feliciano Lopez winning.

CSI is moving to Wednesdays?  Is it the beginning of the end?  (For me, the series ended when Grissom left.)

I watched the premiere of True Blood's Season Four last night.  What a mess.  Not even the pretty people (ASkars, I'm looking at you) are enough to get me to keep watching.  Also, the plot is completely diverging from the books.  And lacking in 1) reality and 2) internal consistency.
jmc_bks: (Default)
TMwtH was funny and smart.  The sets were good, the dialog was excellent, and some of the performances were sublime.  Bobby Cannavale, Elizabeth Rodriguez and Yul Vasquez were excellent.  Annabella Sciorra was pretty good, if subdued, although that may have been a function of her character.  

The real draw back for me, surprisingly, was Chris Rock.  I like his comedy usually.  But TMwtH isn't a one-man show or a stand up routine.  Rock never became Ralph D:  he never stopped being Chris Rock -- his body language on stage was no different from the body language of a stand up show, his diction and delivery, all screamed stand up routine to me.  If the key to a good theater performance is inhabiting the role, he failed.  

I understand that Broadway likes to cast big name Hollywood stars in order to guarantee box office success (hello, Dan Radcliffe), and I don't begrudge that.  It's a little unfortunate that the heart of this play is so outshone by other characters.
 
Content wise, I appreciated the commentary on the struggle of a recovering addict who relapses despite the best intentions, especially in comparison to the seeming success of his sponsor.  

uh, what?

May. 17th, 2011 10:00 pm
jmc_bks: (meninas)
~  Fandom, why are you making me read George R.R. Martin?  I had managed to *not* pick up the behemoth books he writes.  But no, tumbleblogs and fic writers I follow are writing AUs and crossovers, so I must read Game of Thrones and understand the north wall and the appeal of Jon Snow.

~  WTAF, Hawaii 50 writers?  That season finale was a hot mess.  Steve arrested and broken hearted?  Danno maybe going back to New Jersey with his pregnant ex?  Kono arrested and Chin off being disloyal, which is totally contrary to his Hufflepuffish character?  The only thing that might explain this is an opening sequence next season a la Dallas in which it turns out that the entire episode was just a dream or nightmare induced by too many malasadas and Longboards.

~  Another romance blogger has posted a review of an urban fantasy novel that confuses me.  It's urban fantasy: the relationship is not the focus, and complaining about the protagonist getting her HFN midway through the series arc implies (to me) a lack of understanding of genre differences.  The series arc isn't about the relationship, it's about the larger conflict.  Asking what more can happen between them and lamenting the lack of tension now that the question of their relationship has been resolved makes me wonder what genre the reader/reviewer thought the book/series was.

~  It's months off, but I'm torturing myself, trying to decide if I want to go stay in Barcelona for a week, or if I want to rent a car and drive around the south, maybe stay in Granada and do day trips or just do a big, looping, coastal tour.  As much as I want to go north and do the camino de Santiago, that's a spring/summer trip, not a middle of winter trip.
jmc_bks: (GK - undignified)
The occupant of the office next door is not my favorite person.  We work in different offices (blended seating, whose idea was it?), so we don't interact much, mostly just nod to each other when we pass in the hall.  Objectively, she's fine and pleasant, and one of my friends is good friends with her.  I find her habit of putting people on speakerphone and carrying conversations on at full volume to be a little irritating, but a lot of people do that.  Personality-wise, she feeds into a lot of cultural stereotypes or cliches to an extent that I never thought possible -- people joke about stereotypes existing for a reason and she exemplifies one.  But she's generally harmless and nice, so whatever.

Anyway, Friday afternoon, someone stopped by and asked how she was, which prompted a twenty minute lament about Mother's Day.  Apparently someone wished her a happy Mother's Day -- and she described it as a stab in the heart, because she doesn't have kids and won't ever have kids (age + cancer survivor) and her stepkids aren't really hers.  That's right, her stepchildren do not count as really being her children.

In a benign light, she maybe meant that she feels that she isn't their mother or the proper recipient of wishes on Mother's Day, that their mother, however screwed up and drug addicted she is, is the one who gets/deserves the love and well-wishes.

But the words "they aren't really my kids" came out of her mouth, and I was appalled.


And now for superficial judgmental-ness. I did not watch "Sex and the City" when it aired on HBO. I've caught a few episodes on basic cable now that it is in reruns. And I have the following observations:
  • the "plain" one is really not plain. Duh.
  • I do not get the appeal of Carrie -- her clothes look like they came out of a rag bag half the time and her hair very often is styled in a way that does not flatter her face.
  • the one who is desperate to get married is just sad
  • the appeal of Big is lost on me
  • Carrie's "I had to wonder" as a hook for her column got old after two uses
People really liked this show enough to keep it on for several years and to generate two movies?
jmc_bks: (GK_Bradabs)
~ The trailer for HP7.2 looks good. I especially like the way Snape apparates, and seeing Molly duel Bellatrix Lestrange.

~   I am glad the royal wedding press coverage was over. I did not watch it, although I did see some clips online. (Why was it taking up half of WaPo's front page?) Pretty dress, shiny uniforms, bizarre head gear. I did think it was sweet that Harry watched Kate walk up the aisle and then appeared to lean over and say to William, "Wait til you see her."

~ Why was it so easy to sit and blurt out two ficlets for the GK The Iceman Cometh fic party based on prompts, but so hard to write the fic I promised to The Biochemist (in which Brad's license is suspended due to his speed fetish on his motorcycle)?  The bike fic is plotted out, I just...can't get it written.  It's the first time ever that I've never been able to just sit down and blurt everything out on the page with little or no thought or effort or editing.  

~  Mommom's dining room table is being delivered to my house on Monday.  I probably should make room for it, decide which chairs, etc., are going into the basement, etc.  And yet instead I'm sitting on the front porch, enjoying the sunshine.

~ I would like to be in Madrid this coming week instead of 9 months from now.

~ Is it wrong that I want to see the new Fast & Furious movie? It's total cheese, but still...
 
 
jmc_bks: (seagull)
So...how was your Easter/Pascal weekend?

Mine was *fine*. I have no religion, so I didn't realize when I booked tickets to New York that it was a holiday weekend. Eh.

Good theater:

Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. A good adaptation of the original film.

The Intelligent Homosexual's Guide to Capitalism and Socialism with the a Key to the Scriptures. Uh, this play really enjoyed showing how smart its characters were. It could use some editing IMO...although it's not as if I'm a learned theater critic, so what do I know? The story is centered around a Clinton family who gather to discuss their father's future: he wants to commit suicide, and has attempted it once before. All families are screwed up, and this one seems like a hot mess. Infidelity, money problems, mommy and daddy issues, etc. The cast is excellent and they give some amazing performances. The father was a little too much for me, and the introspection and angst could've been cut some, but still pretty good.

Avenue Q. Apparently we're all a little bit racist. And the Internet is for porn.

American Idiot. The final show. I think I've said before that I like Van Hughes' Johnny better than John Gallagher Jr's. The new Will's voice is stronger than Will Esper's, but he kind of freaked me out with his huge eyes and intensity, which didn't really suit stoner/loser Will's lackadaisical attitude. New Tunny's voice blended well with Van's. His tattoos were a little different too. And Gerard Canonico rocked the kettle drums in "Whatsername". And then. Then a Green Day concert broke out. They played for an hour, and all the cast joined them on stage, including most of the original cast who've already moved on. (Stark Sands, please lose the flannel; hipster fashion needs to let go of it.)

ETA:  how did I never notice Gerard Canonico and Alysha Humphress shotgunning during Jesus of Suburbia?  And I missed the old Favorite Son's pull ups as he slides out the window for his song, although the new Favorite Son's pec dance clearly pleased the crowd.  And Bust magazine was what Heather packed into her diaper bag during Too Much Too Soon?  Cool. And finally, I know what was written on all the pink flyers Whatsername tossed:  LOVE HAPPENED HERE.
jmc_bks: (GK_Not Impressed)
Marginally better dialogue in this episode. Especially this:

Sookie: He's your maker, isn't he?
Eric: Don't use words you don't understand. 
Sookie: You've got a lot of love for him. 
Eric: (long pause) Don't use words I don't understand. 

Does this mean the writing gets better across the board?  
jmc_bks: (flaming june)
+  Green Day's "Awesome as ****" live album lives up to the title and is awesome as....  I've got the new Soundgarden and Panic! albums to listen to, too, now, based on The Biochemist's recommendations.  Tuesday really was Super Tuesday in terms of music releases, wasn't it?

+  The US-Spain Davis Cup tie will be played in Austin!  Road trip!  Tickets go on sale April 4th.  As soon as prices and availability are released, I'll be number crunching the budget to see how much PBJ I'll be eating to go :)

+  Dear Big Name NY Pubbed Romance Author:  what the hell is "desert-style zero-scaping"?  Do you mean xeriscaping?  

+  RIP Elizabeth Taylor.  I didn't really *get* you as an actress, but I appreciated your Hollywood Grande Dame status and your AIDS charity work.  Your jewelry was pretty cool, too.

+  Galley Cat linked to this essay about being a book hoarder, which makes me stop and take stock.  Because I do have a hard time letting go of any book once it has made its way onto a shelf in my home or office.  Except maybe statutory supplements that are updated annually, it's easy to dump them in the office library's recycling bin.

+  It's ridiculous how appreciation for a particular actor will make you watch a television show that is otherwise not to your taste.  For instance, I try to watch Mr. Sunshine sometimes because I  ♥  Allison Janey.  

+  I've now given up Chick-Fil-A's sweet tea and waffle fries because of this. (Courtesy of @redrobinreader, after I mentioned that I liked the tea but not the non-stop christian pop.) They were my "errands done" reward.  CFA won't miss the little bit of revenue I put in their pockets nearly as much as I'll miss the sweet tea (why do so few places serve it and even fewer make it right?), I'm sure.

+  Daffodils are blooming everywhere.  Which means spring is here.  But is also awesome just because daffodils are such happy, cheerful flowers.
jmc_bks: (bashful)
I might have something to say for SBD later (if I finish Medicus).  Otherwise, here, look at my favorite of the SuperBowl ads:
Video embedded behind the cut )
jmc_bks: (flaming june)
Registration for #RWA11 opened today, and it seemed like everyone on my Twitter feed was registering and booking their hotel room or debating registering. I felt all D: because I'm not going. I don't actually care about the conference, per se: I'm not a writer or an aspiring writer so a lot of the workshops aren't relevant to me except in an academic sort of way; I don't need the free books -- given the size of my TBR, more free books would be ridiculous. But. But the people! So many people I "know" via Twitter or other online venues are going to be there! And I'm going to miss the opportunity to meet them!

Poking around, checking for new releases to buy or pre-order, I have not found much of interest. SEP has a new book out today that appears to be well-liked by the rom-reading community, but I stopped reading her several books ago, and even if I were inclined to give her a second or third chance, the price of the ebook is ridiculous. February doesn't seem to have many great offerings either: the exceptions are the new In Death book and Carla Kelly's inspirational (which I'm kind of ambivalent about). Jaci Burton's Play by Play will be out in early February, too, and it is one book that has been completely sold by the cover art. Call me shallow.

My reading slump seems to have accelerated. It's the 18th of the month and I've only read three books. Three!  The only thing that is remotely like a silver lining is that since I've read so little, it's been relatively easy to post about each book.

Erin Brockovich (of movie and class action fame) is now writing fiction? Legal(ish) suspense? Uh, okay. The curiosity factor might make me pick it up at the bookstore, but the hardback format would have me either skimming it in the store or waiting for a used copy from Paperbackswap.

The Biochemist broke my brain. Or caused me to break my brain, depending on how you look at it. We were exchanging emails about a potential fic for me to write when the conversation veered into the NYC pop/punk music scene of the late 90s. Ray Person + Gabriel Saporta = brain exploding.  Just the thought of the pair of them with their pimp shades...I can't even.

Dear Melissa Etheridge, I'd love to see you as St. Jimmy on Broadway during your one week run in February, but I don't think it'll happen due to scheduling issues.  This makes me very, very sad, because I think you'll rock the dissolute, seductive, threatening St. J. in a way that's completely different from Tony Vincent and Billie Joe Armstrong's presentations of the character.

Good Hair

Jan. 1st, 2011 09:33 pm
jmc_bks: (flaming june)
On Thursday, I stopped by a colleague's office and admired her family photo:  her fraternal twins are going to be a year old soon.  They are a beautiful family, just so happy and *together*.  She was telling me that they are going to take her son to get his first hair cut soon: he has her hair, a total 'fro, and that she's introduced him to her hair product (Aveda).  And then she said that her daughter got lucky genetically and has her father's hair, thick and straight.  

And when I got home, Chris Rock's film "Good Hair" was waiting in my mailbox.  The timing was entirely accidental, the result of me bumping it up in my dvd rental queue after seeing a mention of it on twitter.  But the entire time I was watching Good Hair today, I was thinking of CH and her son who got her hair and her "lucky" daughter who got her husband's "white" hair and won't need to use relaxant or weaves or whatever else.

I had NO IDEA that at weave started at $1,000.  That is ridiculously expensive, especially since that it only for the hair, not even the maintenance or placement.  But, you know, I also think people who shoot botulin toxin into their faces are crazy.  So if you can afford it and it makes you feel good about how you look, then more power to you.

Aside:  there's a job out there titled "Video Vixen"?  Seriously?
jmc_bks: (TDS)
+ Have I ever mentioned that my favorite of Shakespeare's plays are Much Ado About Nothing and Richard III?  Yesterday I received a notice that Richard III is going to be playing at The Old Vic next summer, and presale tickets are available beginning in January to friends/members.  I don't have the cash to spare for that, but I would so love to see Kevin Spacey as Richard.

+ The holiday shopping is finished but for a stop at the chocolate shop.  Now to address cards and bake.  But that's for tomorrow and next weekend.  Must grocery shop in preparation for the baking.  And go to the post office for stamps and to drop a package.

+ More holiday greeting cards in the mail today.  I learned that some of my friends from college never learned to distinguish between plural and possessive, as demonstrated in the return address label, which lists their family name as "The Friend's" rather than "The Friends".  I would cringe, except I don't think they realize the error.

+ When is The King's Speech going into wider release?  Would love to see it.


 
jmc_bks: (Default)
The music and dance in this play were ridiculously good, especially when you consider that the show is carried by a boy who is maybe 12-13 years old.  (Actually, there are three or four boys who alternate playing Billy, and the one on Sunday afternoon was excellent.)  Also on the plus side was the set design.  

The dream/practice sequence in which young Billy dances to Swan Lake with other Billy was utterly beautiful.  

I don't remember Billy's friend Michael being a cross-dresser in the movie, but the scene in which they try on Michael's sister's clothes (and in which Michael says his dad wears his mum's clothes, too, so cross-dressing wasn't as poof-ish as ballet) was funny and the song that scene is set to about expressing your individuality was quite good IMO.

The only real con for me was that the adaptation to stage remained set in Durham county, and most of the actors could not hold onto a consistent north country accent to save their lives. 
jmc_bks: (flaming june)
It is Monday again, the first Monday of November.  Don't forget to vote tomorrow!

For SBD, I have a hodge podge of things to share.  A melange, if you will.

First, saw Next to Normal last night.  Well-acted, great set, great music, yet I did not love the play.  I think in part because of the subject; without spoiling the plot, I'll just say that it deals with family trauma and fracture.  It does so with humor and sympathy, but I generally avoid books, movies, etc., that focus on that subject.  Having said that, I really like the song Super Boy and the Invisible Girl.  Also had dinner with The Biochemist -- we met after our respective matinees ended :P  [Okay, in AI, Favorite Son was totally ogling Tunny in his boxer briefs.  And Stark Sands blew a kiss to the audience at the end of the show -- is that normal? And Tony Vincent's St. Jimmy is more threatening than Billie Joe Armstrong's, edgier and sort of self-mocking and loathing too.]  We picked a random restaurant on Ninth Avenue based on the menu -- ghoulish ginger carrot soup + watermelon martinis.  Yum.

I may be going back to New York for work in the near future.  If so, I really want to see The Merchant of Venice and Driving Miss Daisy.  And still haven't seen Avenue Q or Billy Elliot.

Third, I enjoyed MoMA, despite my general preference for art produced between the 16th and 19th centuries, rather than modern art.  Oh, wait, except then I remember how much I enjoy Monet, Van Gogh, Seurat, and others, all representated in MoMA.  Particularly enjoyed the furniture exhibit (like Gaudi's prayer bench), and Van Gogh's The Olive Trees, which look like to me like the blurry view out a train window heading south out of Madrid to Andalucia.  And Steichen's photograph of Rodin, The Thinker and sculpture of Victor Hugo is fascinating.   



By Edward Steichen (Camera Work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.

I have consumed too much pop culture. When looking at Steichen's photographs of Rodin's hand sculptures, my first thought was Oh, Han Solo at the end of The Empire Strikes Back!  And then I thought, oh, creepy and threatening and desperate.  This is the only one I can find online, but the other ones were much more striking, IMO.

Next, imagine my \o/ when I got home and found the new In Death book waiting for me!

And lastly, for the book related thing:  

I finished an eARC of a book due out tomorrow (I think), and I'm kind of confused about it.  The book, or rather novella, since it was fairly short, was a pleasant read and I think it was steampunk or supposed to be, but I'm not sure what was steampunkish about it other than some advanced science/tech.  I thought the point of steampunk was to look at changes in society that result from the new tech, to show variations to what that historical period might be.  In this book, not so much.  Any steampunk aficionados reading my LJ?  Can you make me smarter about steampunk so I can reread this book with a better filter?

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