bronze_ribbons: Kimiko Date Krumm fistpump @ Seoul 2009 (Kimiko fistpump)
[The subject line's from Allen Ginsberg's The Lion for Real]

A downside to being an adult: having to say no to picnic plans because copyediting comparative lit crit is currently kicking my butt.

An upside to being an adult: I am currently baking banana-cardamom-rum-chocolate-chip bread. Because the bananas were ripe, and because I can.

Another downside: more mourning. The price of becoming fond of more people.

Another upside: friends sending Smooch Lions!


In today's mailbox: the newest issue of UU World, which includes my poem "Proportions."

Horsies I correctly picked to win today: Dancing Lion (Monmouth allowance), Imposing Grace (Arlington Matron Stakes)

A horse that placed: Admiral Kitten (Arlington Classic)
bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (Default)
From photoblogging

My birthday was excellent. I sang at two services; helped make sandwiches for delivery to flood survivors; took a long nap; read parts of the New York Times; and went to a local bar for a cocktail and steak tartare. I wore a silk dress I'd found via eBay and earrings from [personal profile] xanthophyllippa.

There were funny cards and lovely messages and notices of donations to Second Harvest and other charities. And there were poems and fic, too!
  • [ profile] maribella008 sent me "Phantom Yardstick," a Safin/Berdych drabble. (For you non-tennis people: think Sirius Black and, uh, the love-child of Viktor Krum and Luna Lovegood? *ducks* Put another way: Marat has a reputation as one of the hottest and craziest elite players. Tomas is five years younger - practically a generation in tennis-years - is arguably attractive, looks bug-eyed when he wears his damn caps, and has a reputation as a flake.) (For you tennis slashers: yes, there's literally a long story behind this. No, I'm not going to explain or share it right now.)

  • [ profile] brit_columbia posted a poetic portrait of a bull in celebration of our Taurean-ness

  • [ profile] geri_chan dedicated episodes 13 and 14 of Unmasked (her Haru wo Daiteita series) to me, giving my favorite character (Yoshizumi) considerable screen time and goosing along my OTP in her Comeback-verse (Yoshizumi/Kenzaki).

  • *happy flailing*

    Oh, and I finally finished the FAKE one-shot I'd started as a one-nighter nine days earlier: The Ties That Do Not Bind. (Dee/Ryo, 2300 words, NWS, handcuffs)

    Monday morning, microcosms tweeted one of my poems.

    The rest of the week has been a blur of volunteering, working, coughing, scrubbing, and plotting (Snupin remix assignment; the next scene of Not as Dumb; other poems and stories I have no business teasing into existence until I finish the ones already in progress). There's been a little bit of tennis-watching (the end of Gulbis-Federer and most of Murray-Ferrer) and some poetry-dipping (A.E. Stallings's Seasonal Anxiety reminded me of the academics among you).

    The game plan for next week: edit like a fiend and take a walk every day. That's it. (There will be paperwork I can't ignore and poems I'll want to draft, but this is me telling my hamster-wheel brain to take a break from its ceaseless self-badgering about Things That Will Still Be There To Do/Make/Encourage a week from now.)
    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (ryo/dee season 2 foreheads)
    My weekend so far, fandom edition:

  • Prompted [ profile] r_grayjoy with "marshmallows" and one of my favorite HP characters. Her response (with [ profile] eeyore9990's help, I'm told): Mischief Unmanageable (MWPP, G, 315 words). Hee!

  • Trading lewd and silly haiku with [ profile] brit_columbia in the comments of Sexy Boys, a FAKE one-shot PWP that I think some of you would dig even if you haven't read the series (as long as you're okay being spoiled for it): very explicit, dubcon highschool roleplay. (*hears half of the readership shriek "ACK!" and the other half immediately head over there*) Brit is best known in FAKE fandom for her novel-length A New Day, but another one-shot that doesn't require intimate knowledge of canon or the New Day-verse is Sweet Frustration.

  • It'll likely be a couple weeks before I can fit in the reading I need to do for Part 5 of Not As Dumb (some logistical issues need sorting out), but I'm feeling happy with how the episode's going so far: much to my surprise, I finished the first scene (~ 460 words) before breakfast yesterday, and the plot's in the active ferment phase where I'm locking onto new revelations about it and/or the characters several times a day. (Just now: "Oh! So that's how ____ and ___ are related!" As much as I bitch about my subconscious being a pain in the tuchis, it really is smarter than me scary often.)

    I promised some pictures of the drafting process for part 4. Here they be:

    Longhand chunks of plot, February 2009:
    From brain vs bunnies

    I keep a stack of obsolete library signature cards by my bed for use as scratch paper. Earlier last week:
    From brain vs bunnies

    Finetuning a hard-copy printout, Thursday morning:
    From brain vs bunnies

  • Offline, there's been funky weather, the BYM's high school reunion, and assorted other mayhem. It was good company and good food (especially the hush puppies and shot of Absolut Citron at Cabana) but all I want for today is to knock a couple things off the Must Do list and then kick back with either the Sunday Times or a fat book -- specifically Edward Conlon's Blue Blood, a NYPD memoir I bought back in December 2008 (finding it on sale was coincidental, as was the fact that I'd copyedited an anthology with one of Conlon's pieces a few months before, but my interest in it was indeed primarily fueled by my need to know more for "Not As Dumb"). I'm enjoying his style so far:

    For a long time, I kept to myself at work. I said hello to other cops but not much else. I always carried a book with me, slipping it under my vest or in a jacket pocket. When someone asked why, I'd say gravely, "You never know when nothing's going to happen."
    bronze_ribbons: Sveta kissing her French Open trophy (Kuz kiss)
    In spite of being a rational, "it's just a number" gal 99.13% of the time, I'm admittedly somewhat freaked out about a Certain Birthday being less than a month away. So, to tell my subconscious to SHUT UP ALREADY... )

    ... but the ultimate point of this list is that these treasures shouldn't stay confined to my hodgepodge of archives and memories; if by linking to them I can spark new connections, commissions, and/or gleeful mayhem among all y'all -- or just provide you with an extra bit of sparkle or comfort to your day -- that will make me very happy indeed.

    40 splendid creations )

    In short: network of awesome. And now I gotta get back to hammering away at my own stuff... :-)
    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (ribbons)
    From Luc Reid's "What Goes Around, Stays Around" (flashfic):

    "Mechaieh ... the poet?"

    "Of course the poet."

    "But I heard that all of her poems turned into flocks of birds when you read them."

    "That's only her recent ones. This is one of the old ones."

    "So you've read it?"

    "Of course not. You think I want it to turn into a flock of birds?"
    bronze_ribbons: Andy Murray snoozing with his dog (muzz with maggie)
    Open Palm Press has been producing a series of pocket-sized poetry booklets for Haiti relief. #10 in the series consists of three poems by me: "Drop," "Portion," and "Assignment."

    The cost is $3 per copy; please click here for details on how to place an order. Thanks!

    My minister is a great pastor overall, but she does have her blind spots: I encountered one of them this past Sunday when, in her sermon, she spoke with pity of someone whose social life was primarily online rather than in the "real" world.


    It's easy to point out where the disconnects stem from: the minister is around 15-20 years older than me and an extrovert. Her job depends on her being able to interact with people face-to-face at will 24/7 with equanimity, no matter how unreasonable some of those people can be. (This is something I really wish more people considering div school would get asked sooner rather than later: in my experience, too many of them aren't realistic about the demands of providing pastoral care.)

    Whereas my own work depends on me spending a lot of time alone, and that's how I prefer it. I do have a decent set of social skillz - this week, I started/sustained a fair number of conversations during Sunday's coffee hours, chaired a meeting, attended two lunches and a wine tasting, and have a third lunch date lined up for tomorrow. I would've gone to movies with the BYM Sunday night if I hadn't fallen asleep.

    But these are equally "real," in my book: Trading snark and squee with another tennis junkie over the ongoing mishegoss that is Indian Wells. (Short version: Nadal looking great, how did I end up rooting for Nico over Blake, and davai Elena!) The box of gorgeous tea that just arrived in the mail, from a longtime Snape/Lupin-and-now-manga copine. Postcards from St Kitts, South Africa, downtown Seattle... The gift-card-as-casserole another longtime Snupin friend sent when my mother died two years ago today, along with literally dozens of condolence notes from others. The acquaintances and strangers who quote and rec not only my fics but my poems (and sometimes my rants, eep). The fun of being generous in like wise to others. The quiet satisfaction of volunteer work done late at night and behind the scenes so that old texts and new stories reach more people.

    I enjoyed reading Ivan Ljubicic's perspective about various aspects of playing on the ATP tour. As a fan of both Roger and Rafa, I loved the opening:

    The people on tour are different than they were 15 years ago. You see more players doing so much more fitness. I remember coming into the locker room 10-15 years ago and guys would be talking about other sports and now if you want to survive you have to be focused 100 percent. That's what Roger Federer and Rafa Nadal have done for our sport as they are asking 100 percent out of all of us. If you are not totally committed, you can't even play with them, and I'm not even talking about beating them, I'm talking about how ridiculous you would look out there if you are not playing your best and totally there mentally because you can't even compete.

    The current haul from the library includes a concert recording of Chess (the one with Josh Groban, Idina Menzel, and Adam Pascal as the leads), Tired of Being Tired (like my tangent above, I don't truly expect it to say much of anything new to me, but seeing old truths in different type is sometimes the kick my brain needs to get out of its ongoing ruts), and Posy Simmonds's Tamara Drewe, blurbed as a graphic-novel retelling of Far from the Madding Crowd (my favorite Thomas Hardy novel).

    But before I get to any of those: thank-you notes, housework, spreadsheets, several hundred more words, and a long walk (or at least twenty minutes involving some variation of situps). Onward!
    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (Default)

  • We spent Christmas evening at my parents-in-law's, where the shawl [personal profile] marginaliana had made for me was much admired, and I received the first volume of Love Control from my sibs-in-law, who had sent it in a box with other things for other members of the family. My mother-in-law said, "At first I thought the box was for us, but when I saw that, I figured I'd better look for a note explaining who was getting what."

  • Started James Turner's Rex Libris: I, Librarian over breakfast. Cover blurb: "The World's Favorite Kick-Ass Sesquepedalian Librarian!" There is an evil mastermind with cat. Evil masterminds with cats = happy Ribbons.

  • I had no intention of writing a fic yesterday. I blame geri-chan for the bunny-ambush that resulted in Present Understanding (Yoshizumi/Kenzaki, Haru wo Daiteita, PG, ~1025 words).

  • I made beef bourguignon for my father-in-law's birthday earlier in the week, and "garlicky beef daube" for lunch just now. And the nephews+niece gave the BYM a bag of peppermint chocolate bark. Nom nom nom.


    I'm reading very sporadically, and bookmarking anything over 5K for later (current powers of concentration = nil). With that caveat, the standouts for me so far:

    Haru wo Daiteita: Dust to Dust. 3273 words. Iwaki/Katou, with significant Yoshizumi and Mochimune. Make that awesome!Yoshizumi. This fills me with almost more glee than I know what to do with.

    FAKE: Things Moving and Known. 2404 words. Dee/Ryo, with a Bikky cameo that is full of win. Set a month after Like Like Love.

    Lord Peter Wimsey: The Sceptre at the Feast. 2784 words. Vignettes across the life of Viscount St. George. I especially felt that the author did well by Helen, which is not an easy ask.

    Brideshead Revisited: The Invisible Line. 1182 words. Charles and Cordelia meet after the war. A glimpse of different ways to love the lost.

    Brideshead Revisited: Gillyflowers. 1308 words. Charles and Sebastian. Sensual and heartbreaking.

    If on a Winter's Night a Traveler: I'm recommending the entire category, because they are all centered on a reader trying to access his/her Yuletide fic, and the comments on both the fest and fandom behavior in general are a collective hoot. If you are a fandom meta junkie, you must read these.

    A side note: There is Cambridge Latin Course fic (locked to archive members only). With a BDSM tag. Dude.

    Another side note: I am not yet clicking on the link to the massive Dr. Who/Lord Peter Wimsey Great War crossover out of sheer self-preservation, but I hear tell that it rocks the casbah, and that there is significant Bunter. (Is that a redundancy? Anyway, that'll be a treat for some afternoon when I'm not out of orange juice and marjoram...)
  • bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (ryo/dee)
    I'd planned to have my snapshots properly organized and captioned before posting about my awesome afternoon with etrangere last Friday, but that's not going to happen before I'm back stateside (reasons include being behind on work, getting ridiculously lost in Reims, and the fact that I'll be looking for a hotel room at the last minute tomorrow because there's a train strike planned and I'm waiting to see if it affects my schlep to Strasbourg). Likewise with catching up on comments - they are very much appreciated, and I'll do my best to get back on track and in touch after I'm home.

    In the meantime, here's some interim indecent gloating: I got to meet etrangere! And in addition to being brilliant and friendly and patient, she very good-humoredly led me to an assortment of bookstores offering secondhand manga -- none of which had v. 4-7 of the French edition of FAKE, as it happened, but some other goodies separated me from my Euros nonetheless (including a French edition of X/1999, tome 13 that later set off two sets of metal detectors at Centre Georges Pompidou.

    One of the stores (Little Tokyo, I think) had a corner heaped with Totoro swag, which instantly reminded me of did the characters on the storefront of another shop down the block:

    From Europe 2009 - set 10

    From Europe 2009 - set 10

    (Click images to view the Catbus and Totoros up close!)

    Other fannish notes:thumbnails under the cut )
    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (solo squid)
    ...and, here we are. This is what arrived in the mail from the one and only amazingness that is busaikko-san:

    photos beneath the cut )

    (And oh, there is indeed much mayhem planned. *manic grin* But first I need to reheat my tea and do some of the dances-with-PowerPoint that will help underwrite said mayhem, and to deter the dog from sticking her snout into a certain bag of mini-Reese's-cups I've set aside (smiles at [ profile] aunty_marion), and to figure out how I'm actually going to end part 2 of the fic I've just meta-rambled about to y'all over the past three-odd posts. Onwards!)
    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (eggplant threesome)
    Busaikko-san, you are a NUT. And I freaking adore you. Domo arigato gozaimasu!!!

    (A surprise package showed up today. From Japan. Its treasures include a squid-mobile. Photo TK!)

    Writing log
    LJ-springkink fic: finally broke past the paragraph I'd been pummelling into existence the past two days. 935 words today + some new insights on canon + several hours of research ...and an unexpected OMC, who ended up being a major reason the additional research became necessary. (And most of it won't even appear in the story -- it's just me wanting my timelines and schedules to correspond at least glancingly with canon and reality.) Seriously - 652 words in, I tried to put some words into a canon character's mouth, but they didn't ring true, and I couldn't think of anyone else who would say them -- and then the OMC suddenly sauntered into the scene with both a name and a personality, and the dialogue's got the right snap to it again, and his presence sorts out some other plot issues I hadn't dealt with yet, but ACK, this started out as a short fluffy PWP and so far there's been one belt unbuckled. Why have I not learned to run like hell whenever a prompt crooks its finger at me and asks, "Got a minute?"?

    Yuletide fic: wrote the first half of the first line last night. The assignment is very well-suited to me, and yet it's something I wouldn't prompt myself into writing on my own, so yay algorithm!
    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (treehouse)
    (1) [ profile] drachenmina's An Unpleasant Man at the Bellona Club (drabble with LP, Bunter, and Snape...)

    (2) [ profile] drachenmina's An Inconvenient Affliction. Author's summary: "Harry’s been kicked out by Severus and is having to share Ron and Hermione’s spare bed with Crookshanks. Who gets Kneazle Flu. Can things get any worse? Oh yes." Ribbons's reaction: It's NC-17 Snarry, which I know some of you would normally avoid like the plague, but I feel compelled to point out that Harry's of age, there's non-sickening Hermione/Ron, there's mention of Bagpuss, and that the author knows cats. Oh, does she know cats. Put beverages out of range of keyboard before reading.

    (3) It has been a hell of a week - one of these years, I hope to get my shit together enough to stop feeling like I haven't managed to get my shit together since, well, ever...

    ...but it is also absolutely impossible to feeling sorry for myself for more than a few moments at a time, considering the myriad blessings in my life -- including a surprise package in Monday's mail that contained...

    ...a necklace featuring the Whomping Willow. With a Snape quotation, no less. Made by the utterly, unbelievably fabulous [ profile] westernredcedar. (I almost titled this post "From tree to shining tree..." *eg*) I feel like I've somehow won some sort of cosmic bingo for OTP-indulgence I didn't even know I was playing - I can snuggle the pendant up to my squid when I'm not wearing it, and when I feel like celebrating my other OTP, there's a Remus-keytag [ profile] marginaliana made it can nestle with.

    And I can also go revisit the other treasures written and drawn and translated for me, or inhale a scent, or brew some tea, or reread cards and letters, or fondle feathers, beads, and ribbons -- I have such clever, crafty, comforting, generous friends. I am so utterly grateful that you are in my life. It's not the things in themselves, fun and hilarious and charming as they are - they wouldn't matter one bit if they weren't infused with how you are fun and feisty and thought-provoking and thoughtful. And because they are and because you are, my life is rich beyond measure.
    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (solo squid)
    It came to pass that, amidst a fearsome deluge of work and chores, a shriek of unbridled joy was heard in the land. For a package suddenly arrived contained swathes of shininess, from which emerged early birthday greetings and a wondrous creature fashioned by none other than the marvelous Marion:

    (click on image to view larger version of photograph)

    After emitting aforementioned shriek, Ribbons reluctantly returned to careening around in circles and hopping through hoops, but not before introducing her newest housemate to one of its more sedate companions-to-be:

    :-D :-D :-D Thank you, [ profile] aunty_marion! :-D :-D :-D
    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (houndbunny)
    Lookit! Download it! The intrepid and insanely talented [ profile] westernredcedar has finished recording "The Hounding of the Baskervilles"!

    [I have listened to part 1 and part of part 2 already and am tearing myself away to go to bed since I have to sing at 8:15 a.m. tomorrow. But it is all saved to CD, and tomorrow evening... *bounces in anticipation* Proper rec later, but I didn't want to wait any longer to squee about this.]

    [P.S. Snupiners have the sexiest voices. Go hear the other fics at Go hear lore's annual Halloween poetry readings. (I also have a deliriously delightful recording of her laughing that I occasionally play for myself when I feel ridiculously blue...)]

    *shamelessly fangirls everyone referenced above*
    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (Default)
    My sinuses currently feel like they're the size of pumpkins. Intelligent design my foot.

    Also have another hour of work I have to log in before I can go to bed. *grumble*

    That said, on the eight night of Christmas, my true love stopped by my sofa, handed me three Lego keychains -- one of Dumbledore, one of Hagrid, and one of Hermione -- and said, "I looked for your favorites, but they weren't in stock."

    *still grinning from ear to ear*


    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (Default)

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