nanila: fulla starz (lolcat: science)
( Mar. 18th, 2014 09:59 pm)
I felt the urge to rewrite my introduction so I thought I’d use it as a starting point for a Subscription Meme, as I haven’t seen one going around for a while.

I’ve made a template, which I’ve filled out very wordily below. Please feel free to adapt it to your wishes, and please link this post wherever you like. (Please participate or share? I'm going to feel very sad if this entry sits here alone with 0 comments...)

Subscription Meme template:
<b>People in this journal</b>
<b>About my job</b>
<b>Some random facts</b>
<b>Things I like to do</b>
<b>Fandom</b>
<b>Social media usage</b>
<b>>Subscriptions, access and commenting</b>
<b>What I’d like to get from my participation here</b>


My responses! )
tags:
Ladybird in toddler hands
I took this macro shot in July, when we went for a walk in a protected meadow nearby. Humuhumu was so careful with this ladybird, cupping it gently in her hands on its tuft of grass seed and then placing it back on a leaf when she was finished looking at it.
New glasses
Thank you, [personal profile] cmcmck, for giving me a prompt that allowed me to post a photo of Humuhumu in her new "Elsa blue" glasses. (They actually have Eeyore on the frames, but never mind. We love Eeyore too.) Here she's snuggled down in her favourite fuzzy grey blanket in anticipation of watching Paddington.
Handsomest cat
Telstar in the light from sunrise, sitting nobly tall on the dining table.

(A day early, yes, but goodness knows the internet could use more cat pictures ASAP)
nanila: wrong side of the mirror (me: wrong side of the mirror)
( Nov. 29th, 2016 09:49 pm)
Somehow, we are nearly eleven twelfths of the way through this year. On the scale of national and global events, it has been an utterly appalling grind. On a purely personal level, it has been busy and fulfilling. I feel simultaneously an increasing pressure to expend my resources in extending an umbrella of protection over those who don't share the modicum of good fortune I possess, and the urge to enjoy that modicum of good fortune whilst it remains. I'll soon begin my annual Seasonal Giving posts in order to facilitate the former.

In the interests of fulfilling the latter, I'm going to repeat the December Days meme with photos, as I did last year. Please suggest a photo you would like me to post and, if you would like, select a particular day. If you're bereft of ideas, here's a short list.

  • the kids, Keiki and Humuhumu
  • Throwback Thursday
  • the cat, Telstar
  • me (I do love a selfie)
  • local wildlife
  • macro shots
  • places I've been (see the "travel" tag DW/LJ)


I may opt to repost an old photo or take a new one, depending on temporal and/or spatial constraints.

List of days )
I felt the new haircut was worth documenting with the dSLR, as the chances of me straightening my hair in the three months until my next haircut are pretty much nil. :)

New Haircut Day

+1 )
nanila: me (Default)
( Nov. 23rd, 2016 06:55 pm)
Who’s got plans for event-based Pokéwalks? *raises hand*

  • Fiiiiiiinally reached Level 26. Currently trying not to think about how long that took.
  • Am enjoying the new bonuses for first catch of the day/first Pokéstop of the day, and for the 7-day streaks of these. On days when I can only play for a few minutes, it’s so helpful for boosting my XP tally in any sort of meaningful way.
  • I seem to be encountering a lot of Mr Mimes at the moment. This is not so pleasant. OTOH, I’ve run into 10 or so Magnemites in the past three weeks, which has made me quite happy.
  • The Spreadsheet of Evolve says I can add seven more things to my Pokédex at my next Lucky Egg of Evolve. Soon I will buy said Lucky Egg of Evolve, because I have seventy-odd evolutions available.
  • I played with Humuhumu when we were on the U of Birmingham campus last weekend. We had a great time and she was very proud of catching 20 (!) Pokémon, three of them with Excellent throws. I think I’ve had maybe two successful Excellent throws in all my weeks of playing? Kids!
  • The event that started today couldn’t have been better timed, as I’m in London through Friday. I’m happy with double points and stardust. I would be even more excited for a repeat of doubled candy bonuses. Maybe they’re saving that for the December festival holiday event?
Chilling with his bestie
Keiki, eating cheese puffs & chilling on the sofa with his bestie, Telstar.

I've been at home with the toddler for the past couple of days. He went in to nursery on Monday morning and within two hours, he'd brought up his breakfast onto the book he'd been reading. (He held out the book to his key worker and plaintively told her, "Dirty.")

Today he was obviously feeling much better, after 24 hours spent drinking milk and fruit puree and lying on top of Mummy. So he "helped" me while I dialed in to a telecon this afternoon. For twenty minutes he behaved beautifully, and then just as things were wrapping up, he started pounding the keyboard and managed to hit the mute button. Of course. My fellow participants were treated to ten seconds of me hissing, "No, Keiki, no, paws off," while he screamed "HAAAYYYYYY" randomly and joyfully at the top of his lungs, until I wrestled him to the floor, reached up and jabbed the mute button again.

If you need me, I'll be in the corner, scraping together the shreds of my dignity.
I realise this question is, like, so 2008, but I'm still curious.

Poll #17753 How to pronounce .gif
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 73


When speaking aloud, which pronunciation do you use when referring to a file with the .gif extension?

View Answers

A "jiff"
7 (9.6%)

A "giff"
66 (90.4%)

I think I use this pronunciation primarily because of

View Answers

my geographical location
11 (15.1%)

the way I first heard it pronounced
29 (39.7%)

the way I thought it should sound in my head
59 (80.8%)

something else which I shall describe in comments
10 (13.7%)

tags:
nanila: me (Default)
( Nov. 17th, 2016 12:53 pm)
It occurs to me that, while I’ve been very slow to begin to read long-form writing (e.g. novels & non-fiction longer than magazine articles) again, I’ve actually been watching quite a bit more new stuff than I have since before Humuhumu was born. Mostly since I no longer have to go to bed before 10 PM every night because I'm so tired. There are some spoilers here for "Planet Earth II", "Frozen" and "Paddington". The other reviews are of documentaries or are spoiler-free.

~~~Television~~~
Planet Earth II: Narrated by Sir David Attenborough, of course. I have to admit, I giggled all the way through the snow leopard sequences because I couldn’t stop thinking of that sketch from “John Finnemore’s Souvenir Programme”, which features a cameraman and a biologist with absolutely nothing in common, stuck up a mountain together for six months. Eventually they find common ground in mocking Sir David for continuing to narrate all these grand BBC nature programmes after retiring from field work. “We should just get an ordinary leopard and Tipp-Ex it!” “Or get an albino serval and do potato prints on him!” Er, anyway, the scope and cinematography of the programme are excellent, as one would expect, and it is fantastic at the end of the day to soar with the eagles, face-plant into the snow with a bobcat, or cheer on a baby iguana as it navigates a treacherous run through a perilous, snake-strewn obstacle course.

The Missing: This is one of those crime drama programmes that felt like it was going to be a two-or-three parter and then wrap up neatly. The BBC does that sort of thing brilliantly. The first two episodes were wonderfully suspenseful and quite scary.

Now that we’re six episodes in, it’s all gone a bit silly. I’m still on the fence with whether I’m on board with that, given how unlikeable most of the protagonists are.

Masterchef: The Professionals: Let’s be real now, I mostly watch this because of Monica Galetti, who pulls the best faces and is also, despite the lack of Michelin stars, a better chef than Mr Beardface aka Marcus Wareing. He thinks he’s the best judge on the show when he’s clearly entirely limited his tastes to fine French cuisine. Monica not only has that expertise, she also has palate that is capable of appreciating more diverse flavours. And she has the best hair.

My investment in this programme is a pale shadow of my love of Bake Off [RIP]. It peaked during the “normal” Masterchef in 2013, the year that Natalie Coleman won.

~~~Film~~~
Frozen: Aaargh. I’ve seen it a few times now. I don’t love it. Too many dreadful sappy songs, not enough ridiculous snowman and reindeer dialogue. Humuhumu likes it, though she thinks the ice monster is too scary, which is why a parent has to watch it with her. Presently I’m being heavily questioned about why Hans wants to steal Elsa and Anna’s kingdom. Gosh it’s fun explaining to a four-year-old what powerful motivators greed and a lust for power can be.

Paddington: Happily, Humuhumu loves this film almost as much as Frozen, though she thinks the naughty lady (Nicole Kidman’s character) is scary. I don’t mind rewatching it with her, as it's a pretty blatant parable about the positive effects of immigration. She asks a lot of questions every time it’s on, trying to understand the moral implications of what’s happening. The last time we watched it, I had to tell her no less than ten times that no, Uncle Pastuzo wasn’t coming back, because a tree fell on him during the earthquake and he died before he could get to the shelter.

The Take: The timing of the cinema release of the film (Bastille Day 2016, the day a freshly radicalised Tunisian man drove a lorry through a crowd in Nice, France) was awful, especially given the premise - terrorism by white people is subsequently erroneously blamed on Muslims. I enjoyed this. It was action-packed, well-paced and featured a lot of Idris Elba. What’s not to like? It was also entirely forgettable; the week after we watched it, I had difficulty remembering the title. If anyone was looking for further proof that Idris Elba should be James Bond, this adds to the already enormous stack of evidence.

The Man Who Knew Infinity: The bloke and I are both great fans of G. H. Hardy’s A Mathematician’s Apology, which lays out the working and personal relationships between S. Ramanujan and Hardy from Hardy’s perspective. This biopic attempts to show the same from Ramanujan’s. There are some great character portrayals of Bertrand Russell and John Littlewood. The film makes an effort to illustrate how the combined impact of Ramanujan’s isolation from sympathetic peers, loneliness at the long separation from his wife, poor physical condition, and Hardy’s drive to make him rigorously prove his theories, drive him to an early grave. It gives flavour for some of the barriers he faced in the form of obvious institutional and societal racism and the more subtle, unintentional racism of his allies, as exemplified by the little scene where Hardy asks Ramanujan if he enjoyed the college dinner (mutton, which Ramanujan didn’t eat because he was vegetarian). But it falls short, somehow.

Hypernormalisation: The bloke and I watched this three-hour documentary in the run-up to the US election. It’s pretty epic in scope as well as length, as it attempts to draw together historical decisions to explain how we’ve arrived at the present stage of “post-truth” politics. Its narrative begins with the ostracisation of the Syrian government by western powers and heavily leans on the use of Libya’s Colonel Gaddafi as a pawn in a game of global distraction as well as the normalisation of the use of suicide bombers in modern warfare. There are a lot of diversions, including Jane Fonda and artificial intelligence research, which feed into the narrative with varying degrees of comprehensibility. The soundtrack is great (lots of Nine Inch Nails), although it feels like there are a few too many lingering shots of dismembered bodies. That said, I’d recommend it if you have the stomach, because it provides a compelling argument for the way ill-conceived political maneuvering has brought us to the stage where Donald Trump proved a viable candidate for the US presidency. It doesn’t offer any solutions, so it’s a pretty bleak viewing experience, although you may derive a certain hopeless satisfaction in contemplating becoming a devotee of nihilism afterward. Watch it for free on iPlayer here. Viewing requires a UK-based IP address.
Here are two things that have provided pinpoints of light in these dark times.

The first is the release of roya’s EP, “trax”. Roya & I went to high school together. She now lives in Sweden. We see each other every few years when she passes through London, usually on her way to someplace more exciting. Roya introduced me to the internet (back in the days of dialup and BBSs) and the Simpsons (you know, when it started). She was the first programmer I ever knew. She was, in short, much cooler than I am, and she continues to be in these haunting electro tracks.

Roya - trax
[The cover of the trax CD EP, two stickers, and Roya’s note to me. Click here to access her Bandcamp site, where you can listen to tracks and/or purchase her work.]

The second is a Dutch artist who was having a small exhibition at ESTEC the last time I was in the Netherlands. I was immediately attracted to her abstract, heavily textured paintings. I noted an area of one piece that had been done with a palette knife and we then had a long chat about her intricate, labour-intensive construction process. I was secretly delighted at some similarities to my own, and inspired to try some of her more sophisticated elements. It is my ambition to own one of her Lyrical Incandescent or Geological Series pieces.


[“Through the Heavens,” Nicole Cijs, from the Geological Series. Click the image to view her web site.]
.