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[Before going into the review, for those following the trials and tribulations of my air conditioning. After two sleepless nights, no, make that three, Super Installed new A/C and removed existing, broken A/C, which barely kept the room at 78 degrees at night. (Granted it could have been worse.) It's been between 26-32 C or 80-90 F the last few days, with 70-80 at night. ]

Finally finished reading The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher. This was published in the Fall of 2016, shortly before her untimely death. It is the last thing she wrote, and an interesting bookend to her writing career, which was heavily colored by insane celebrity status she achieved when she starred in a low budget sci-fi 1970s film entitled "Star Wars".

The book unlike her previous works is essentially about how Star Wars affected her life and changed it. And how she dealt with it. It's also about an ill-timed affair with a married co-star that she'd been infatuated with at the time. And how that threw her for a loop, considering her father had left her mother, along with his two young children via an affair with Elizabeth Taylor.

On a much larger scale, it's also about how the toxicity of our celebrity obsessed culture. And how starring in a little low-budget sci-fi film at the age of 19 can turn one's life upside down for good or ill.

I'm not sure if you are under the age of say, 46 or 47, you can completely understand the cultural phenomenon "Star Wars" is and was? And while Fisher attempts to explain this in her book, I'm wondering if you kinda had to be there? Not necessarily in Fisher, Hamil, and Ford's shoes, but around at the time, and cognizant of what was happening around you. Knowing that movies well weren't like that and this was a game-changer, a watershed moment in human history. A demonstration of just how certain advances in technology can change cinema forever. And a preview of what was to come.

Before Star Wars, the only film that had people lining up for it was possibly Gone With the Wind. And it wasn't around blocks. Star Wars created the term - "blockbuster", which Fisher describes as meaning a line that is broken up by blocks. It busts the blocks. The lines for Star Wars from the time it opened until roughly six or seven months later were around blocks. I remember my father driving us to two hours away to see it. We'd never done that before. It was different than anything we'd seen -- nothing was quite like it. George Lucas redefined the cinema experience with Star Wars, he'd created surround sound, special effects that no one had seen before, and incorporated robots, puppetry, and creatures in his film that weren't obviously humans in cheap makeup. You had space-cruisers rocketing through space shooting each other. Lucas had combined the popular action/adventure cinema tropes of the 1940s and 50s into one movie - he'd combined the Western with the WWII drama with the Swashbuckler. Watching Star Wars was like seeing an Errol Flynn flick, a John Wayne flick and a WWII James Garner flick all at once. And it was fun. Not scary, like most sci-fi films and television series had been, but fun. And not campy either.

Today, years later, the first film seems rather quaint, I suspect, and the special effects mediocre.
People have been perplexed by what they saw as wooden acting. Or the cheesy hair styles. But this was 1977. Back then, we had cheesy hair styles, and bell bottom pants. And well, special effects...were not as good as Star Wars.

Before Star Wars, sci-fi didn't do well at the movies. Mostly B movies. Before Star Wars, there weren't any blockbusters or event films, outside of maybe Gone with the Wind. (Wizard of OZ flopped.)
For years, Star Wars was the highest grossing film. And people could not wait for the second one.
It had a fandom to rival any fandom out there...and it had done something Doctor Who and Star Trek had yet to accomplish, it took sci-fi mainstream.

Fisher's book can broken up into three segments.

The first -- explains how she ended up in Star Wars.
She briefly details her audition, which she has just a vague recollection of. Apparently Brian De Palma and Lucas were doubling up their auditions. De Palma was auditioning for Carrie and Lucas for Star Wars. Lucas was the least talkative of the two. Fisher notes how this was not her first role in a film. At the age of 16, she was in Shampoo, as Lee Grant's promisicous daughter, who sleeps with Grant's lover, Warren Beatty. And prior to that she did her mother's shows. A high school drop out, due to going on tour or doing Broadway with Mom, Carrie ended up going to the Center for Performing Arts in England. And from there, auditioned for the role of Princess Leia. She notes how she practiced for her second audition with her friend Miguel Ferrar, the cousin of George Clooney, and son of Rosemary Clooney, who'd tried out for the Han Solo role. Then, Fisher goes on to explain how she ended up infatuated with Harrison Ford, and how they fell into bed together...resulting in an awkward, secretive, three month affair -- that up until now, no one knew about but Fisher and Ford.

This is prelude to the actual diaries...which make up the center section of the book, and are a bittersweet May-December romance between two actors, far from home, and in their first leading roles in what they believed at the time to be cult low budget sci-fi film that few people would see. (Because that's what sci-fi films were like in the 1970s, they were cult efforts that few people saw. No one expected this film to do well. How could they have known? The cast, with the exception of Alec Guiness, was unknowns, and even Guiness was hardly star power. And it was science fiction. Not to mention low-budget. Fisher and the cast were paid to scale, $500 a week. Flown economy class. And told to take care of their own accomodations.) When Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford had their affair they honestly didn't think it was a big deal. Fisher was infatuated with Ford. She never expected him to be interested in her, let alone kiss her, so when they end up in bed together, she finds herself starring at him and wondering, WTF? How in the heck did this happen? And where do we go from here?
She describes it in the book and in interviews afterwards as a three-month one-night stand, and a product of a location shoot. And insists that as far as she knows, Harrison hadn't done that with anyone else before or since. He, also, most likely regretted it later. He'd thought her more experienced than she actually was.

The diaries are well written, and touching. At various points, nineteen year old Fisher wonders why she tries to connect with others, if it's even possible to do so? She's introspective, flailing, and not sure of her own feelings. Is this love? How can it be? She barely knows him. Does he feel the same way about her? She asks, and gets nowhere. The most she gets is the conversation the two have on-screen in Empire Strikes Back, where she says "I love you" and he states, "I know". After reading the diaries...which unlike the rest of the book, are poetic and hopeful, I understood some of the odd interactions I've seen between Fisher and Ford in interviews and tribute specials. At the AFI - Fisher tells Ford during her tribute speech, "Harrison gets nervous every time I open my mouth and talk. He should be made aware as should you all, that my memory is foggy and sucks." Then later, "Harrison hates doing love scenes, okay maybe he just doesn't like doing them with me." And Ford's expression is exasperation and grumbling. I find that odd, since to my knowledge they hadn't really done any...but turns out they had, just behind the scenes.

If you read the diaries without the prelude, not sure they would make sense. They are bittersweet mainly due to what comes after. And touching in that the woman writing them fails to see her own brilliance and beauty, not to mention her compassion and insight into the human condition. What it is like to fall in love with someone who doesn't love you back or not as much as you love them. What it is like to be infatuated ...and awkward with a guy, tongue-tied. You can see why so many people fell in love with her. Yet in the book, she seems to think it was with Leia not her. And is rather confused.

Up until the final section, I'd thought this book was just about Fisher's affair with Ford, but no, it's about much more than that. The final section discusses fame and being the source or object of adoration...what it was like to have people come up to you on the street or at a convention, regale you with personnel stories about how you or rather the role you played in a film some 40 years ago, changed their lives. At first, she ate it up, wow, she thought, I'm in a movie people are flocking to see and is the biggest thing ever! Then, it overwhelmed her. They had promote the film. They thought it was a low-budget sci-fi film. I remember their promotional campaign. Ford, Hamil, and Fisher wandering about the country and the globe, from talk show to interview, touting a film that as Fisher puts it didn't require touting. Ford at first did most of the talking. None of them had ever done it before. At first, they thought they had to answer all their fan mail personally -- because they'd never received any before. And they all did it. Then realized no, you don't have to, that's what managers and public relations people do. As the years passed, Fisher was continuously thrown by her fame as Leia. And had a love-hate relationship with it.

spoilers and rather long, meta on fandom, Star Wars and Fisher )

(no subject)

Sep. 24th, 2017 08:00 pm
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[personal profile] shadowkat
1. Television shows watched lately...

The Good Place

This is actually funnier this year than last. We basically watched Michael attempt to make things work and fail miserably.

It was a wonderful satire of organizational and management failure. Or directorial failure.

If you like absurd humor mixed with light satire...this is worth a shot.

Mozart in the Jungle -- which was adapted from Mozart in the Jungle- Sex Drugs and Classical Music.

In the tradition of Anthony Bourdain’s Kitchen Confidential and Gelsey Kirkland’s Dancing on My Grave, Mozart in the Jungle delves into the lives of the musicians and conductors who inhabit the insular world of classical music. In a book that inspired the Amazon Original series starring Gael García Bernal and Malcolm McDowell, oboist Blair Tindall recounts her decades-long professional career as a classical musician—from the recitals and Broadway orchestra performances to the secret life of musicians who survive hand to mouth in the backbiting New York classical music scene, where musicians trade sexual favors for plum jobs and assignments in orchestras across the city. Tindall and her fellow journeymen musicians often play drunk, high, or hopelessly hungover, live in decrepit apartments, and perform in hazardous conditions— working-class musicians who schlep across the city between low-paying gigs, without health-care benefits or retirement plans, a stark contrast to the rarefied experiences of overpaid classical musician superstars. An incisive, no-holds-barred account, Mozart in the Jungle is the first true, behind-the-scenes look at what goes on backstage and in the Broadway pit.

The television series follows the conductors more than just the oboist.

I'm tempted to get the book, I love books like this.

Loving the series...has great characters, lovely music, and is happy. It's comforting. Like a nice blanket on a winters day.

2. New A/C not yet installed, hardly surprising. This is the Super's Day off. So surviving with old A/C fan and fan. Which brings things to 75 degrees. Hopefully will sleep tonight. Was up at 6:20 AM
in order to get delivery, which ended up arriving at 8 AM. So made it to church, saw MD off. MD was quite kind. I'll miss her.

Church was better this week...the sermon was about the evil addiction of the iphone. Apparently teens have stopped having sex, going to parties, and exercising since the advent of the iphone, suicides and isolation has increased. One teen commented that she didn't leave her bedroom and just was on her phone and social media all day.

So on October 8, she's going to challenge people to check in their phones, or put them in a basket and do without for a day. Unless you have to have it for some reason or have a good relationship with your phone.

This lecture sermon was lost on me. I have no relationship with the phone. It's off 90% of the time. I tend to use it mainly as a camera and to check the time. At work, I'll check the news or FB, if I'm bored. I don't like phones. They irritate me. I bought a cell -- kicking and screaming, along with the iphone. I barely use it.

I'd be just as happy without it.

But hey, I got a basket to put my backpack and purse in. Also got rid of dusty sofa. And got armchair. Now trying to decide whether to buy second arm chair or a love seat two seater couch.
On the fence. Also need new coffee table, small desk (to draw on and eat on), and more storage capability. Bit by bit. By the time I'm done, I'll probably want to move again.

3. Music tastes...watching Mozart in the Jungle reminds me how much I love classical music. I just don't see it in person, because it tends to put me to sleep. I prefer to listen over watching people playing. Odd. But there it is.

Ranking?
1. Classical
2. Jazz
3. Folk/Singer-Songwriter
4. Indie/Alternative
5. Rock (British and otherwise)
6. Country/Easy Listening
7. Broadway Show Tune
8. Dance
9. Blues/R&B
10. Heavy Metal (ie. Nine Inch Nails)
11. Electronica
12. Opera/Hip Hop
13. Rap

(no subject)

Sep. 24th, 2017 05:56 pm
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[personal profile] shadowkat
My mother and I were laughing our heads off over THIS.

Mother called this horrendously hilarious. She's not wrong.


During Sunday’s NFL games, scores of NFL players knelt during the national anthem, imitating the protest initiated by Colin Kaepernick, the former 49ers quarterback who took a knee during the anthem to protest police brutality and racial injustice. The widespread protest was adopted after Donald Trump lashed out at Kaepernick’s actions in a campaign rally, saying, “Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a bitch off the field right now – He’s fired’?”

(Trump also doubled down and called for a boycott of the NFL until the protests stop, hilariously not realizing that there was already a left-wing call for a boycott against the league’s racism.)

There are a lot of football games on Sundays, and players protested at almost every single one. Even those players who didn’t kneel linked arms in a sign of unity with their teammates, and almost every football organization had issued a statement of support for protesting players before today’s games.



Apparently, or according to my mother who watched the game (I don't watch Football unless it's the superbowl and the Giants are playing), the Pittsburgh Steelers, outside of one player, refused to come out on the field during the playing of the national anthem.

Me:Uhm, what do they normally do?
Mother: They normally come out on the field, stand and put their hand over their chest. Lately they've been kneeling in protest. But the Steelers decided to not come out at all.
Me: Well, that does save the knees.

Mother: Owners of the Football teams and heads of the NFL who had supported Trump and contributed to his campaign, are now, standing shoulder to shoulder with their teammates in protest against him.
Me: Wow. Guess they are regretting that campaign contribution about now.

Mother: He's told Americans to stop watching football and said the sales are decreasing, and less people are attending games...meanwhile the stadiums are filled to capacity. He also told them to fire the people kneeling.
Me: Like they are really going to fire the guys scoring the goals. Come on. Also Americans don't stop watching football.
Mother: They don't care about the violence and the injuries...
Me: There's a boycott of it going from the left...
Mother: That's mainly about the injuries.
Me: No I think that's a separate boycott. Although, honestly I don't see how any of these boycotts will work, people who love football will continue to watch football and go to football games. Unless you give them a deeply personal reason not to.

(no subject)

Sep. 24th, 2017 05:40 pm
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[personal profile] shadowkat
Found THIS the other day on Facebook, and it reminded me of a conversation I was having with Peasant about the regional culture and colonization of the US.

In his fourth book, "American Nations: A History of the Eleven Rival Regional Cultures in North America," award-winning author Colin Woodard identifies 11 distinct cultures that have historically divided the US.

"The country has been arguing about a lot of fundamental things lately including state roles and individual liberty," Woodard, a Maine native who won the 2012 George Polk Award for investigative reporting, told Business Insider.

"[But] in order to have any productive conversation on these issues," he added, "you need to know where you come from. Once you know where you are coming from it will help move the conversation forward."


Below are a few examples of how Woodward describes the US regional cultural makeup.



Yankeedom

Encompassing the entire Northeast north of New York City and spreading through Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota, Yankeedom values education, intellectual achievement, communal empowerment, and citizen participation in government as a shield against tyranny. Yankees are comfortable with government regulation. Woodard notes that Yankees have a "Utopian streak." The area was settled by radical Calvinists.

New Netherland

A highly commercial culture, New Netherland is "materialistic, with a profound tolerance for ethnic and religious diversity and an unflinching commitment to the freedom of inquiry and conscience," according to Woodard. It is a natural ally with Yankeedom and encompasses New York City and northern New Jersey. The area was settled by the Dutch.

The Midlands

Settled by English Quakers, The Midlands are a welcoming middle-class society that spawned the culture of the "American Heartland." Political opinion is moderate, and government regulation is frowned upon. Woodard calls the ethnically diverse Midlands "America's great swing region." Within the Midlands are parts of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, Iowa, Kansas, and Nebraska.

Tidewater

Tidewater was built by the young English gentry in the area around the Chesapeake Bay and North Carolina. Starting as a feudal society that embraced slavery, the region places a high value on respect for authority and tradition. Woodard notes that Tidewater is in decline, partly because "it has been eaten away by the expanding federal halos around D.C. and Norfolk."

Greater Appalachia

Colonized by settlers from the war-ravaged borderlands of Northern Ireland, northern England, and the Scottish lowlands, Greater Appalachia is stereotyped as the land of hillbillies and rednecks. Woodard says Appalachia values personal sovereignty and individual liberty and is "intensely suspicious of lowland aristocrats and Yankee social engineers alike." It sides with the Deep South to counter the influence of federal government. Within Greater Appalachia are parts of Kentucky, Tennessee, West Virginia, Arkansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, Indiana, Illinois, and Texas.

Deep South

The Deep South was established by English slave lords from Barbados and was styled as a West Indies-style slave society, Woodard notes. It has a very rigid social structure and fights against government regulation that threatens individual liberty. Alabama, Florida, Mississippi, Texas, Georgia, and South Carolina are all part of the Deep South.

El Norte

Composed of the borderlands of the Spanish-American empire, El Norte is "a place apart" from the rest of America, according to Woodard. Hispanic culture dominates in the area, and the region values independence, self-sufficiency, and hard work above all else. Parts of Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, and California are in El Norte.

The Left Coast

Colonized by New Englanders and Appalachian Midwesterners, the Left Coast is a hybrid of "Yankee utopianism and Appalachian self-expression and exploration," Woodard says, adding that it is the staunchest ally of Yankeedom. Coastal California, Oregon, and Washington are in the Left Coast.



I don't know if I entirely agree with his views. For one thing what about the 50% of the population that jumps around? A lot of us move due to jobs, family, education, spouses, children (see family), climate, and finances (some areas are pricier than others).

And, the recent immigrants from other areas?

I'm from three of these areas, possibly four. New Netherland, The Midlands, and Yankeedom.

But, it's interesting that the wealthy British and Irish colonized the slave colonies and participated heavily in the slave trade. (Bad British and Irish). While the Dutch, Quakers, Scottish Calvinists...went the opposite route.

Again, I don't think it was that clear cut or easily mapped. People move around a lot. And he forgot the Welsh miners who settled in PA, Virginia and Kentucky.

Oville - About a Girl

Sep. 24th, 2017 08:23 am
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[personal profile] fresne
Hmmm... when I finished the "About a girl" episode of Oroville, I longed for the kind of time I used to take writing analyses of shows. Alas, I'm very much in the midst of finishing (trying to finish) this year's writing project, so I shouldn't. Because those tend to take several days to write.
But perhaps something foreshortened.

Read more... )
shadowkat: (Default)
[personal profile] shadowkat
I'm up early waiting for an a/c delivery due to arrive in fifteen or twenty minutes. So, passing time posting.

1. Found THIS interesting piece about a mysterious group that is slowly hacking its way through Brietbart's advertising base one tweet at a time. Thanks to conuly for the link.

I found it interesting in regards to the comments about free speech.

Read more... )

Another example of censorship... The banned 1910 Magazine that started a feminist movement in Japan.


She led the men through the large house and down the long corridor to the rooms that served as the magazine’s headquarters. The men looked around and spotted just a single copy of the magazine’s latest issue. They seized the publication and, as they were leaving, finally told the surprised young woman why they had come. This issue of Seitō had been banned, they told her, on the grounds that it was “disruptive of the public peace and order.”

The young women who had created the magazine less than a year before had known it would be controversial. It was created by women, to feature women’s writing to a female audience. In Japan in 1911, it was daring for a woman to put her name in print on anything besides a very pretty poem. The magazine’s name, Seitō, translated to “Bluestockings,” a nod to an unorthodox group of 18th-century English women who gathered to discuss politics and art, which was an extraordinary activity for their time.


Continuing on the thread of the First Amendment and Censorship...

Views Among College Students Regarding the First Amendment.

Sort of surprised me. We had more rights in college regarding expression in the 1980s. And a lot of discussion about it. The Author is John Villasenor - Nonresident Senior Fellow - Governance Studies, Center for Technology Innovation. Apparently college kids can now post research thesis on the internet.

[ETA: Apparently this is junk science and not verified with facts...according to an article in the UK Guardian. Which by the way throws a whole new angle on the whole free speech bit...do we have the right to spread false information on the internet or poorly researched data? OR should we have the right to do that? Should that be stopped? Well, you do run into the slippery slope of what constitutes false information and who should be the judge. Right now the alt-right lead by Trump is claiming any news that disagrees with or disparages their message is fake news. Anything that calls their information into account or questions it. Which is a bit...well, telling in of itself and definitely censorship. By labeling news that questions you as fake news or critiques you, or fact-checks something you said as fake news...you are attempting to censor your opposition and that's dangerous. That is censorship. So the Guardian questioning this student's thesis is correct. They are fact-checking him. While Trump telling people not to watch say CNN or refusing to provide information to news sources that have critigued him the past as an attempt to shut them down is censorship, because he's the President of the US (like it or not). If he was a private citizen with no power over the media, he could say whatever he damn well pleased. But as President, what he states... is a whole other matter. ]

And this is another example of infraction of Free Speech, where the news media is forced to support a governmental objective or regime...

Sinclair Broadcasting is forcing all 174 stations that they own across the country to air daily pro-Trump propaganda segments..

See this is why I ignore broadcast news, and only watch NY1 (Time Warner) or NY Times and check sources.

Good news? The a/c came. Bad news? Have to get super to install. Good news? Current A/C appears to be sort of working at the moment. Which made me question decision to get new one. Have decided to treat it as a gift. It's working until I install new one. And it's not really working -- only the fan, and it won't go below 75 degrees effectively.

(no subject)

Sep. 24th, 2017 07:21 am
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[personal profile] shadowkat
Didn't know some of this...but proof of a gender bias in our culture that is slowly changing and may save lives:

Research is now being conducted for women and men, using female animals not just male animals, as it had been done previously -- yes, I know the fact it is being done on animals..is well, but that's another discussion.


A 2014 National Institutes of Health policy that requires scientists to begin using female lab animals takes full effect in January. All basic animal research must include females — or researchers must justify the exclusion. Bottom line: Use females or lose funding.

This is great news and long overdue.

"I'm really thrilled," says Teresa Woodruff, director of Northwestern University's Women's Health Research Institute, who lobbied for this policy change for years. "I think this is going to be a complete game-changer for science and medicine. If we can get a better understanding of how drugs work at the basic science level, on men and women, that's going to improve the medical pipeline for all of us."

You might think including female animals in research is common sense. But remember, until 1993, many researchers thought nothing of using male subjects almost exclusively in human clinical trials to test a broad array of treatments and drugs. No Girlzz Alowed. As if the physiology of men and of women were so similar as to be nearly indistinguishable.

"The truth of the matter is men and women are very different at the cellular level, at the molecular level, at the systemic level," Doris Taylor, director of regenerative medicine research at the Texas Heart Institute told The Washington Post.

Something you probably didn't know: "Every cell has a sex," Dr. Janine Clayton, director of the NIH's Office of Research on Women's Health, told The New York Times. "Each cell is either male or female, and that genetic difference results in different biochemical processes within those cells. ... If you don't know that and put all of the cells together, you're missing out, and you may also be misinterpreting your data."


I found out about this indirectly through someone attempting to sell me a hormone plan, based on a quick internet test. So I was skeptical and did research, and found the article above.

And the differences in how men and women's bodies handle nutrition, also how the economic, social and educational cultural bias to gender have a detrimental effect on overall health in various communities and areas:


Gender differences in social determinants of health and illness

Social factors, such as the degree to which women are excluded from schooling, or from participation in public life, affect their knowledge about health problems and how to prevent and treat them. The subordination of women by men, a phenomenon found in most countries, results in a distinction between roles of men and women and their separate assignment to domestic and public spheres. The degree of this subordination varies by country and geographical or cultural patterns within countries, however, in developing areas, it is most pronounced. In this section, the example of nutrition will demonstrate how gender has an important influence on the social determinants of food-consumption patterns and hence on health outcomes.

Several studies have shown the positive relationship among education of mothers, household autonomy, and the nutritional status of their children (6, 7). During the first 10 years of life, the energy and nutrient needs of girls and boys are the same. Yet, in some countries, especially in South Asia, men and boys often receive greater quantities of higher quality, nutritious food such as dairy products, because they will become the breadwinners (7–15). Das Gupta argued that depriving female children of food was an explicit strategy used by parents to achieve a small family size and desired composition (13). Studies from Latin America also found evidence of gender bias in food allocation in childhood (16–18) and, correspondingly, in healthcare allocation (19).

In developing countries, most studies show preferential food allocation to males over females. Nonetheless, some studies have found no sex differences in the nutritional status of girls and boys (20–22), and others have described differences only at certain times of the life-cycle. For example, research in rural Mexico found no nutritional differences between girls and boys in infancy or preschool, but school-going girls consumed less energy than boys. This was explained by the fact that girls are engaged in less physical activity as a result of culturally-prescribed sex roles rather than by sex bias in food allocation (23).

Studies from developing countries of gender differences in nutrition in adulthood argue that household power relations are closely linked to nutritional outcomes. In Zimbabwe, for example, when husbands had complete control over all decisions, women had significantly lower nutritional status than men (24). Similarly, female household heads had significantly better nutritional status, suggesting that decision-making power is strongly associated with access to and control over food resources. Access of women to cash-income was a positive determinant of their nutritional status. In rural Haiti, the differences in nutritional status for male and female caregivers were examined for children whose mothers were absent from home during the day. Those who were looked after by males, such as fathers, uncles, or older brothers, had poorer nutritional status than children who were cared for by females, such as grandmothers or sisters (25). Ethnographic research conducted by the authors revealed, however, that, while mothers told the interviewers that the father stayed home with the children, it is probable that the father was, in fact, absent most of the day working and that the children were cared for by the oldest child, sometimes as young as five years of age.

The involvement of both men and women in nutritional information and interventions is key to their successful implementation. Unfortunately, in most developing countries, women are selected for nutritional education because they are responsible for the preparation of meals. However, they often lack access to nutritional food because men generally make decisions about its production and purchase. Similarly, men may not provide nutritional food for their families because they have not received information about nutrition. The participation of both men and women is, therefore, fundamental to changing how decisions about food are made and food-consumption patterns and nutrition families (26). The study in rural Haiti referred to above also found positive outcomes through the formation of men's groups which received information on nutrition, health, and childcare. These men, in turn, were resources for education of the whole community (25).


Go HERE for The Study in the Journal of Health, Population and Nutrition

The good news is that biologists, nutritionists and scientists are slowly moving past gender bias and looking into both genders health issues. As opposed to looking at only one gender, or generalizing and thinking there is no difference between the two genders.

How we think about gender, how we view it, and how we deal with it -- these articles and others demonstrate has to change.

Also I need to change doctors. My current doctor doesn't see these differences and specializes in men's health. He's hurt me without knowing it. I had to figure stuff out for myself. From his perspective -- if I exercise and eat like a man, I'll be fine. Doesn't factor in perimenuopause, hormonal changes, etc. Nor does he appear to care. Time for a new doctor. Just have to find one.
It's harder to find doctors who take my health insurance in an urban area...then you'd think.
I'd actually be better off if I lived out in Long Island like my co-workers.

(no subject)

Sep. 23rd, 2017 08:50 pm
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[personal profile] shadowkat
Hmmm...update meme:

1. Doing: Spent the day dealing with vendors, which was well trying and a touch stressful. Good news? Accomplished all three tasks.

Read more... )

Then went for a long meditative walk and grocery shopping. Because all of that, well the a/c stuff, was insanely anxiety inducing, also frustrating. And it went okay, or as well as can be expected.

2. What I am Watching?

Vietnam War Documentary on PBS by Ken Burns. And I'm bored. It is interesting in places. But too much information. Brain overload. I need to watch this when I'm not gainfully employed, and writing three books at the same time in my head. Plus trying to figure other things out.

Did learn a few things...the French do not come out as very nice. Actually it's an indictment of the French, British and Americans. Apparently the French colonized Vietnam and enslaved the inhabitants, justifying it as civilizing them. The Vietnamese could have done without the French version of civilization and didn't need them, thank you very much. Ho Chi Mingh went to the Americans to help them get out from under French rule. And the Americans sort of helped, but got caught up in well the Cold War and their fear of Communism. He tried, in various letters to various Presidents, to inform them that he wasn't a communist and he just wanted a free state for Vietnamese. (If anything he was more of a nationalist.) But alas, the CIA with its own agenda, refused to pass the letters on to the Presidents. Things escalated, the US became paranoid of Communism and hence the Vietnam War. The American fear of Communism and European urge to colonize killed over a million people.

Depressing. And hard to watch. I knew some of it already. What I didn't know was what the French did.
Okay, not completely true, the French father of a family that I stayed with in the 1980s in Brittany, did tell me a lot of it. But he told me in French, so I got about half of it. He was stationed there and had been in the trenches.

What else?

The Expanse, Mozart in the Jungle, Wynonna Earp S2, and General Hospital. Also tried to watch The 100, but I think I'm going to give up on it and delete. I just don't care about any of the characters any longer. I've no clue why. I liked the first two seasons, but the third one lost me a bit with the whole Allie arc and oh the world is going to blow up, again. My least favorite sci-fi subgenre is nuclear war. I got burned out on it in the 1980s.

3. What am I reading?

At the moment, Carrie Fisher's The Princess Diarist --- which is her publication of the diaries she kept while filming the first Star Wars film - A New Hope. The first 45% of the book is prologue or set-up to the diaries. She's basically setting the stage, so you can figure out what she's talking about in the diaries. Because Fisher is more like I am in her journal writing...she writes about feelings, how she feels about things, what her thoughts are, and less about what she did or what happened. She's a reflective and introspective writer, not a...oh today we had lunch, and went to the doctor, and did this, and that, and had sex with our boyfriend. She also isn't into doing graphic sex scenes...so if you were hoping for Star Wars porn...it's not there. I'm liking the diaries more than I expected, much better than the introductory material.

However...she does in the introductory material state that she'd received closure with Ford, and he was kind. Which explains why they had no problem doing the next two films together, and were able to remain friends or at the very least friendly. Ford is not the most emotionally reflective of folks, which if you read any of his interviews you probably already knew. Nor much of a conversationalist. He's fairly monosyllabic. But he does tell her...in response to her statement that she's such a hick. "No, I think you are a lot more intelligent than you think you are...so an intelligent hick." Pause.
Then after a bit. "You have the eyes of a doe and the balls of a samaria (sp?)." Which she realized was out of character for him to say and incredibly kind. In the interview -- the only thing Ford was willing to state about Fisher and the book, was more or less the same thing ...that she was brilliant, kind, and amazingly brave and he was glad to have known her. And to his credit, he'd thought when they entered their affair that she was a lot more experienced than she was, for she came across that way. And they smoked so much pot that Fisher can't remember much of it, and really just has her diaries and vague memories to go on. She does wonder why she didn't go for Mark, who would have been far more suitable. (Honestly? I know why. I'd have jumped Ford over Hamil when I was 19. At 12 I preferred Luke, but I was more romantic and less sexual at that point. And I'm ten years younger than she was.)

Also read a lot of romance novels. Read more... )

I'm eclectic and insanely diverse reader. There is not a genre that I have not binge read or read at one time in my lifetime. I just can't remember half of the books that I read in it...the downside of binge reading, I suspect. I do have my favorite -- go to genre, which is sci-fantasy, mainly because unlike romance and mystery, it tends to combine the other genres within it, and I like world-building apparently. Or crave something a bit more complex and thematic, with lots of metaphors. I jump into sci-fantasy in between other books.

4. What I'm writing...

Besides multiple things for work, and blog posts...still plodding away on my sci-fi novel, the one about the resistance leader negotiating a peace settlement with the aliens she's been fighting for a decade. Doing a lot of world-building in the midst of the action. At the moment sort of stuck on a plot bunny. Read more... )

I thought it was September

Sep. 23rd, 2017 07:14 pm
chickenfeet: (canada)
[personal profile] chickenfeet
So the Humidex is heading towards 40 tomorrow. It was almost as hot today. After a week of Scottish 10C and on and off rain this is a bit hard to take but better than an early winter I guess.

Wonder Woman

Sep. 23rd, 2017 06:40 am
cactuswatcher: (Default)
[personal profile] cactuswatcher
I'm always late to the party when it comes to seeing movies, but there are some I look forward to seeing.

Spoilers if anyone cares )

Star Wars: The Clone Wars S1

Sep. 23rd, 2017 12:15 am
yhlee: Drop Ships from Race for the Galaxy (RTFG)
[personal profile] yhlee
Actually took me a bit to watch this because in between, first the Dragon inhaled Voltron: Legendary Defender, and then Joe (who had apparently seen the original Voltron?) watched out of curiosity and got sucked in and inhaled Voltron: Legendary Defender, and he WOULD NOT SHUT UP ABOUT IT until I watched it, and then I got sucked in and inhaled it in like four days and NOW I WANT MORE. But that's another post for another night.

cut for spoilers )

(no subject)

Sep. 21st, 2017 10:55 pm
shadowkat: (Default)
[personal profile] shadowkat
1. Eww...really who wants to see a man put a digital tracking device up a woman's vagina in an action film?

2. There's nothing like a slew of bad reviews to make one curious about a movie or television series...I mean can it really be THAT bad? And if they network is cancelling it after 8 episodes yet still airing all 8 and even premiered it in IMAX..

3. Maybe it's just me, but this plot synopsis makes no sense


She had no idea what passion was,
Until she saw them…

Lady Alain needs a husband, and Quintin Wyntor will do just fine.

She will offer him a mutual agreement of respect and independence–
As long as he never visits her bed to claim his marital rights.

But seeing him with a man, with Calder, changes it all.
For better–and for worse.

Passion stirred.
Desire ignited.
And yet, she still never wants to touch or be touched.

But Quinn’s heart is shattered when his lover walks away so he decides to explore his feelings for Celeste to ease his broken heart.

In one unchecked moment of passion, mutual need spins out of control and bringing Calder home now may just be impossible.

Will Celeste give in to what Quinn wants for her?
Or will she stand her ground and hope they find another way…

This book is the story of Celeste and has her happily for now.
It is also the beginning of Calder and Quinn’s story which will be continued in THE SPARE AND THE HEIR.

This book is an autochorissexual romance (on the asexual spectrum) but contains important pieces of a gay romance. Both are explicit.

Warning: this book has a cliffhanger ending for Calder and Quinn, but is very much part of their story.


So guessing it's about a threesome? What the hell is autochorissexual??

And I need to stop buying books for .99 cents or 1.99 whenever they go on sale. [Clarification - I did not buy that one. Considering the synposis was giving me a headache.]

4. Reading The Princess Diarest...Carrie Fisher's memoir about the filming of Star Wars. She spends an entire chapter discussing lip gloss and another one discussing how the makeup artist styled her hair. Weird memoir.
yhlee: snowflake (StoryNexus: snowflake)
[personal profile] yhlee
[Note: I used Cheris and Jedao as my playtest characters when working on Winterstrike, a StoryNexus game I wrote for Failbetter Games.]

"I can't believe you didn't think it was worth telling me that we're living inside a game," Jedao was saying.

Cheris sighed. "I didn't tell you," she said, "because you wouldn't be able to shut up about it, and it's hard being a good playtest character when someone keeps ranting." cut for Ninefox spoilers, I guess? )

(no subject)

Sep. 21st, 2017 07:04 am
cactuswatcher: (Default)
[personal profile] cactuswatcher
Hoping to put it off till some of the rush slowed down, I checked with Equifax this morning. Looks like I luckily was not one of the 100+ million whose data was affected. I do feel for all those who were!

art accountability

Sep. 20th, 2017 04:19 pm
yhlee: wax seal (Default)
[personal profile] yhlee
Sunday's sketch of the Dragon while we were getting food:


(Dammit, I like life drawing, even if I'm too n00b to be good at it. Joe says I have been getting better since I started a few years back though.)

Pen: Pelikan M205 Aqumarine (F nib)
Ink: Diamine Eclipse

Moving on from heads to eyes and lips? )

I haven't gotten back to Ctrl+Paint because life has been busy, but yesterday my art accountability was working on a Thing in Photoshop, mainly blocking in values.

Too many TV Shows...Too Little Time

Sep. 19th, 2017 09:30 pm
shadowkat: (tv slut)
[personal profile] shadowkat
According to Entertainment Weekly there are roughly 145 television series. I actually don't see many new ones that spark much interest, more interested in the returning ones.

Most of the good ones are popping up in October. I remember when everything popped up the week after labor day. Now we have revolving television seasons. And about 145 shows per season, which is about well multiple that by four seasons...and that's a lot of television. That said, most of them are hard to find or require a device, a smart television, cable subscription, and payment. None of it is really free. Well, maybe the five or six broadcast channels.

Returning shows that I'm watching or thinking of watching...or haven't given up on quite yet

1. Lucifer - Now at 8pm on Fox. Starts October 3.

vague spoilers and casting spoilers from the mag on Season 3 )

2. Poldark S3 Returns to PBS at 9PM on October 1. (Poldark goes to France with the French Revolution, while Demelza must deal with her troublemaker brothers, and Elizabeth has her kid.

3. Good Behavior S2 pops up on Oct 15 - at 10PM TNT. Basically a con-artist/thief, her hitman love and her precocious son living the family life.

It's really good. A twisty and somewhat humorous noir series.

4. This is Us returns on Tuesday (used to be on Wed, confusing) - 9/26/17 at 9PM on NBC.
I can never remember what channels these shows are on. They were discussing at work what channels they watch...I was thinking I don't really watch channels just television shows.

This is Us is an ever-surprising non-linear family saga about a husband and wife who lose a triplet during childbirth and adopt a third baby at the hospital, as well as the journey of the three children, Randall, Kate, and Kevin as children, teens, and thirty-somethings.

It's the best family drama I've seen and one of the best serialized dramas of last year. If you liked Brothers and Sisters, Parenthood, and Friday Night Lights..you'll probably enjoy This is Us.

5. Riverdale returns 10/11 - CW at 8PM. (I personally would have put it at 9pm for the adult content, but what do I know?)

This is basically Archie Comics by way of Twin Peaks, except without David Lynch. So S1, Twin Peaks.
It's dark, gritty, sexy, and twisty in places.

6. The Good Place returns on 9-20 (ie, tomorrow), on NBC at 8:30 PM (yes, it also moved nights, again, confusing -- I wish they'd stop doing that, stupid network programmers. OTOH, probably doesn't matter, since most people just DVR it or watch on demand or stream.)

This is the comedy with the weird twist. I actually had given up on it, until I found out about the twist and went back to watch and decided it had a charming satirical edge to it.

Anyhow, Eleanor and her friends think they are in heaven. She believes she landed there by mistake. Except heaven is rather irritating and problematic. It's also run by a well-meaning but rather inept and bumbling Angel, who has built a new heavenly domain or so we think....spoiler )

* There's all sorts of satirical jokes on American culture, politics, and religious mythology.

7. Grey's Anatomy returns on 9-28, Still Thursdays, at 8PM. It's Season 14. It has Supernatural beat by one season. Supernatural is on S13. But NCIS has made it to Season 15, and The Simpsons and South Park are on Season 20 something.

Some shows can't die.

They are rebooting or refreshing it with new interns, a refurbished and remodeled hospital (it was sort of blown up last season), and new love triangles...because it's actually a soap masquerading as a serious medical drama. Entertainment Weekly provided a flow chart showing all the incestuous and soapy relationships between the characters...basically proving my point.

8. Once Upon a Time reboots itself on 10-6 at 8PM on ABC and it also appears to have changed nights.(Because the network programmers are bored apparently?) It's now on Fridays.

It also has basically re-written itself from scratch. You honestly could come into this without having seen the previous seasons and be fine. Instead of the story revolving around Snow White and the Evil Queen, it's revolving around Cinderella and her Wicked Stepmother...and StepSister. With Alice (from Alice in Wonderland) as a sort of portal jumping Rumplestilskin character. And the Princess from Princess and the Frog as Cindy's friend. Also, POC cast. Which is interesting. And Henry is apparently in the Emma role now, or rather an adult Henry is.

Very odd. I am admittedly curious. But the writing has been ...disappointing to date. So we'll see.

9. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Pops up on 10-13, still on Friday. CW. It has managed to survive, probably because it is on the CW. The CW is rather interesting in that regard.

This is a cool sitcom, doesn't always make me laugh, but it has its moments. Sometimes it makes me cringe. But it is a great satirical critique of our gender issues, how our society views romantic love, etc. Plus it has song and dance numbers.

10. Stranger Things S2 -- shows up on Netflix on 10/27. In time for Halloween.

11. Big Bang Theory --- returns on Monday 9/25 at 8PM (Season 11)

Shows...I'm giving a second chance to:

* Lethal Weapon (I'm curious what they do with the cast shake-up)
* Gotham (Bruce Wayne is becoming Batman)
* Outlander (I may do the Starz trial and check it out)
* The Exorcist - Jon Cho
* Better Things
* Will & Grace (okay it's new, but 11 years later...)
* Poldark (see above)
* Great News (which I didn't try last year)

It's late, bed calls. Will do the new shows some other time.

non-binding poll

Sep. 19th, 2017 02:53 pm
yhlee: heptagon and flame (mirrorweb) (hxx emblem Liozh)
[personal profile] yhlee
Because I realized there's no point in my writing prequel-to-hexarchate (or even prequel-to-heptarchate [1]) stories about all-new characters if nobody wants to read about all-new characters in the story collection. :]

[1] I had this great idea about the heptarchate's founding but.

NOTE: I make no guarantees.

Poll #18837 hexarchate story collection
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 42


What *existing* characters would you like to see more stories about?

View Answers

Shuos Jedao
28 (66.7%)

Kel Cheris
34 (81.0%)

Shuos Mikodez
24 (57.1%)

Kel Brezan
18 (42.9%)

Kel Khiruev
18 (42.9%)

Andan Niath
6 (14.3%)

Nirai Kujen
13 (31.0%)

mystery POV #1 from Revenant Gun that Yoon evilly refuses to divulge
13 (31.0%)

servitor POV #2 from Revenant Gun
19 (45.2%)

someone else that I will mention in comments
4 (9.5%)

ticky the tookie tocky
13 (31.0%)

Growing old

Sep. 19th, 2017 06:55 am
cactuswatcher: (Default)
[personal profile] cactuswatcher
Yep, it's my birthday and I celebrate Sirius' birthday with mine. (Spoiler: He's a little younger than me.) I think this new computer is my self-birthday gift for this year. I wish the old one had lasted a little longer. It worked well enough, but it was a cheap brand and it's not surprising a key component died, thankfully well after any extended warranty, which I didn't purchase, would have helped. The biggest disappointment is that I couldn't transfer my background picture from my old computer to this one. I don't like the selection of such pictures that comes with Windows 10. So I resized and loaded an old picture of the Grand Canyon from our ATPO meet there. I wish the picture could have been taken four hours earlier or later that day so the colors in the canyon would have been richer, but it's impressive enough. Big bonus: a father and son in the picture look down admiringly from the top of a cliff toward [personal profile] masqthephlsphr and [personal profile] fresne as if they'd traveled across the US just to see them. ;o)

(Serious TMI warning!!!) Growing older: I got a big surprise during my jury duty couple weeks ago. To be honest my interest in women has deteriorated with age to just interest in companionship. There is a time in a man's life when the big majority of women look very sexy. The farther a guy gets from being a teenager the more the group of women who are personally attractive for him shrinks, and that group drifts more from the physically attractive ones to the ones with better matching personalities. I'm to the point where women looking sexy is more of a academic issue than a emotional one. So it was a giant surprise when I was glancing around the other prospective jurors in a our large pool and one woman stuck out like a sore thumb. She was neither the prettiest woman there, the most beautiful nor the one with the most pleasing figure, but my lord, something in my subconscious was screaming "This Is The One!" My conscious on the other had was calmly saying, "Are you nuts? I'm clearly old enough to be that woman's grandfather!" Subconscious: "But, she's perfect!" Conscious: "Look at her finger, dummy! She's married!" Subconscious: "I don't care. She's perfect!"

Yes, well... I knew perfectly well, she fell into *my type.* She had some of the same distinctive characteristics of two women I'd been in love with long ago, once upon a time. But God, at my age I don't need that kind of crap popping into my head. So I studiously avoided looking at the woman. But my subconscious kept picking up things my conscious would just as soon have ignored. She sat behind me in the courtroom and I quickly started to recognize her voice. My conscious to my subconscious, "I am absolutely not going to bother that woman!" Subconscious:"Couldn't we be friends? She's so..." Conscious: "Hell no! Stop making me think like a dirty old man!" The woman got on the jury and I did not. Another reason to be pleased I wasn't on that jury.

I had no idea I could still be so affected by a random woman. I thought those days were past.

Birthday Boy!!!

Sep. 19th, 2017 05:11 am
masqthephlsphr: (vincent)
[personal profile] masqthephlsphr
Happy Birthday, [personal profile] cactuswatcher!!!

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