miss_s_b: (Politics: Democracy)
[personal profile] miss_s_b
... it's because the boundary commission have released their finalised report into the boundary review, and hardly anybody is happy about it. The vast majority of politicians, you see, wanted the boundary review to advantage their party and shaft their rivals. The boundary commission, meanwhile, have been scrupulously fair, and tried quite hard to advantage nobody and shaft nobody.

Now, there is a school of thought that this doesn't matter a jot because it'll never get past parliament, requiring as it does far too many turkeys to vote for Christmas. I, for one, think that would be a shame, if only for my little home patch.

The proposals for Calderdale are basically what I would have done, were I the boundary commission. A lot of my fellow Calderdale politicians will doubtless be pissing and moaning about various bits1, although having read the report, the Tories will probably be the least annoyed of us. Here are the things I am pleased about:
  1. The two constituencies make geographical sense, for the first time in my lifetime.

  2. The town I live in can no longer be almost completely ignored by three of the five active political parties in the area.

  3. We have not created a complete dead zone for the Lib Dems in the constituency I live in, which is what would have happened had the commission accepted the Lib Dem proposals2.

  4. The constituency names, while not the ones I suggested, follow the same logic3
All in all, I'm quite happy. So here's hoping the turkeys do, for once, vote for Christmas.



1I know a bunch of my fellow Lib Dems are annoyed we haven't got a winnable seat out of it, by putting all the wards with Lib Dem councillors into the same constituency. To which I would say: did you see our vote share at the last general election? And also combining wards where we have councillors is not the only way to get a winnable seat. Look at the demographics...
2Calderdale Lib Dem membership is divided pretty much half and half, which it would not have been under the proposals the party submitted. While it will annoy EVERYBODY who wanted to be in the mythical winnable seat, gives us two live constituencies to fight for, instead of one with pretty much every Calderdale activist except my household in it.
3I wanted Calderdale East and Calderdale West and they've gone for Upper Calder and Lower Calder. I can live with that. It's miles better than their initial suggestion of calling my seat Halifax, when it only had half of Halifax and two towns that are not Halifax in.

The Blood is the Life for 17-10-2017

Oct. 17th, 2017 11:00 am
miss_s_b: (Default)
[personal profile] miss_s_b
tamaranth: me, in the sun (Default)
[personal profile] tamaranth
2017/80: The Furthest Station -- Ben Aaronovitch
It was no use pointing out that we were actually policemen, not gentlemen, because Nightingale has a very clear idea where one ends and the other begins. One day, I’m hoping, he’ll show me where that line is. [loc. 159]
no spoilers )

Further Smooch Updates!

Oct. 16th, 2017 09:48 pm
naamah_darling: The right-side canines of a wolf's skull; the upper canine is made of gold. (Default)
[personal profile] naamah_darling
Most of my updating has been happening on Tumblr.  Here's the latest.

He's doing well.  He likes the new food, he's acting totally normal.

We got the imaging I wanted to get done.  The vet found some bladder stones, which is worrisome, so we'll be keeping an eye on that.  He also found some sort of soft mass north of his kidneys, which the radiologist said not to worry about. I'll still be discussing that with him when we go back in but for now "not a tumor, harmless" is good enough for me.  Plus it lets me make Arnold Schwarzenegger jokes.

Mostly what we found in imaging was poop and farts.



He's digesting pretty slowly, which is not yet concerning, but is worthy of note.

His kidneys look good.  (See the :) above!)  His heart is beautiful.  Look at it in there, so pretty.  Cat hearts are so small on X-rays but as cat lovers know, they are actually quite large.  Just . . . like . . . Smooch's isn't, really.  He's kind of a tool.

I'm worried about the bladder stones, but the vet said they may be cystic, meaning they're maybe enclosed and not loose.  So that's . . . less bad.  Although it could get bad very quickly.  I don't know, I'm really worried about it but he said surgery wasn't something he'd recommend right away.  I'll address it with him again later, get a price quote for removal surgery, and maybe have more imaging done to see if they are embedded in the bladder wall or are loose.  And the food he is on can also help dissolve stones, so there's that.

I really love Smooch's vet.  He's a sweet guy, and good with cats.  Actually, everyone at that Banfield is great.  They've made this so easy to handle.

ANYHOODLE.

The fundraiser is only $25 from its second goal, and I expect it to tip over at any moment.  I'll probably leave it up in case anyone wants to keep donating, because frankly Raleigh needs to see an eye specialist for a recurring infection and between this new kidney thing and his perpetual eye issues Smooch is moderately high-maintenance at this point.  All the proceeds are going from Paypal to my bank and then straight into an envelope in the form of cash, where I won't touch it for any reason besides vet care.  (I always pay with plastic.)

You can see more updates at the fundraiser homepage.

Thank you, everyone, for boosting, for donating, for offering advice and kind words.  I have a lot of hope he will be with us for a good long time to come.  My stinky yeti boy.  My garbage boy stink man.  My stinky pinky.  My one and only Smooch.

Our survey says…

Oct. 16th, 2017 09:32 pm
miss_s_b: (Pratchett: Nanny Ogg)
[personal profile] miss_s_b
Obviously for data protection reasons I can't go into much detail about the responses FCC got to the end of conference survey, but I do want to highlight one small area:

The impressive number of you who said Glee was the best fringe event, and the smaller but still impressive number who said we were the best thing about conference full stop, and the hardy few who said the best way to improve conference would be to have more Glee, and the one dear sweet soul who said Glee was their main reason for coming to conference?

I am genuinely touched and I love you all. Thank you. It makes it absolutely worth trying to chair a debate with a hangover and a sore throat first thing in the morning after. You guys rule.

♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡
miss_s_b: (Mood: Brain Hurts)
[personal profile] miss_s_b
I just got around to filing all my paperwork from Bournemouth conference, and I realised that I'm not going to be able to fit any more into that lever arch file:



This means that paperwork from the three meetings I have remaining to attend this year will need to go in a new file. This displeases me; I wanted to be all neat and do a file per year.

* grumpy face *

The Blood is the Life for 16-10-2017

Oct. 16th, 2017 11:00 am
miss_s_b: (Default)
[personal profile] miss_s_b

Short Film News

Oct. 16th, 2017 10:36 am
bugshaw: (Default)
[personal profile] bugshaw
The Treehouse film I made last summer is premiering at St Neots Film Festival on Wed 8 Nov!
http://stneotsfilmfestival.co.uk/
I'll be going along with my big Film Premiere coat :-)
It will be made public on vimeo the next day and I can post it here if anyone's interested.

Dish Life (short with children being stem cells in petri dish) has made New York Times' Ten Things To Do In NYC This Week list (For Children section) - the director and scientist are over there now and having a great time.

Mastodon

Oct. 15th, 2017 02:57 pm
miss_s_b: Christopher Lee's Dracula hovers over Joanna Lumley (Fangirling: Sir Lee Dracula)
[personal profile] miss_s_b
Just flagging up that I have signed up. I am miss_s_b@mastodon.social if you are on there; there are some interesting differences with twitter, but also some depressing similarities (mansplaining strangers; prominent TERFs, despite TERFery being explicitly outlawed in the TOS) so we'll see how it goes.

I've also authorised Mastodon Bridge on both Mastodon and twitter, and would encourage others to do the same, to help us all find each other. It's important to get the syntax of your mastodon name right, but don't worry if you cock it up (like I did) you can just hit back and try again ;)

ETA: having looked at this "which instance should you join?" Mastodon quiz I'm thinking I should maybe have plumped for this one instead... so if you're considering it, it might be worth doing the quiz. We'll see. If I get into it, and if enough other people turn up on there, I may move to a different instance.

Kindle Update

Oct. 15th, 2017 02:26 pm
miss_s_b: (Fangirling: Books)
[personal profile] miss_s_b
Thanks to everyone who answered my poll as to which Kindle I should get. Today I have ordered a paperwhite, and the poll is therefore now closed.

The Blood is the Life for 14-10-2017

Oct. 14th, 2017 11:00 am
miss_s_b: (Default)
[personal profile] miss_s_b

2017/79: Thin Air -- Michelle Paver

Oct. 14th, 2017 09:14 am
tamaranth: me, in the sun (Default)
[personal profile] tamaranth
2017/79: Thin Air -- Michelle Paver
‘...the Big Stone’. That’s all Kangchenjunga is. ... It might possess a semblance of animation, because of the wind, and the crack of canvas, and the distant rumble of an avalanche on the Saddle – but that’s all it is, a semblance. There is no life up here. And no menace, either. The Sherpas are wrong. This mountain has no spirit, no sentience and no intent. It’s not trying to kill us. It simply is. [loc. 1382]


Thin Air is set in the mid-1930s. Stephen Pearce, who's just broken with his fiancee, is glad to have been recruited by his brother Kits as the doctor for a mountaineering expedition. The expedition's goal is to climb Kangchenjunga, the third highest mountain in the world, which has never been successfully summitted. a bit spoilery )

Kindle

Oct. 13th, 2017 08:01 pm
miss_s_b: (Fangirling: Books)
[personal profile] miss_s_b
My old Kindle keyboard died a couple of weeks ago. Having looked into repairs and replacing it with the same model on eBay and such, it's going to be less fuss to just buy a new one1.

Looking into the current models, I hit upon a dilemma. I really, REALLY do not want a backlight, and I have been told that on both the paperwhite and the voyage you can turn the light down low, but never off completely. For me, the main attraction of an e-ink display was the lack of invasive lightiness buggering up my delicate little eyeballs. So that instantly pushed me towards the basic... BUT the basic has a lower resolution, and no 3G option, and apparently is a bit cheap-feeling and breaks easily.

I get paid on Sunday. I'll be buying a new kindle on Sunday2. Help me to decide which one?

Poll #18929 Kindles
This poll is closed.
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: Just the Poll Creator, participants: 11

Which kindle should Jennie buy

The Basic
2 (18.2%)

The light's not THAT bad, the Paperwhite
6 (54.5%)

Hang the expense! The Voyage!
3 (27.3%)


In other news, isn't it amazing how much I blog on a twitterless day?



1srsly, Kindle keyboards go for STUPID money, who knew? It's almost like having buttons is a good thing for some people, and touch screens are not the be all and end all of everything...

2This is why the Oasis isn't even an option - apart from anything else I have a book I need to write a review for by the end of the month that's on kindle and the Oasis doesn't come out till the end of the month
miss_s_b: Peter Falk as Columbo saying "just one more thing" (Mood: And another thing)
[personal profile] miss_s_b
I've been thinking about social media today, what with the twitter boycott and everything. And I can see Twitter dying, actually. Or maybe just limping on, haemorraging users, but never quite dying, the way LJ has. I mean, it's already got to the point where users bemoan how it used to be in the good old days...

But Facebook.

Facebook is never going to die, is it? It's like amazon; its critical mass is too huge, its gravity too crushing for the vast majority of internet users to escape. Periodically someone comes up with a better social networking idea, but it never takes off, because everybody is on Facebook and why would they go through the hassle of moving?

And people might say "what about MySpace? Everyone had a MySpace back in the day! And that died!" But they didn't. Everyone who was on the internet had a MySpace, but the majority of people were not on the internet in those days. These days the majority of people on this planet ARE on the internet, and more than half of them actively use Facebook. And the damn thing just keeps on growing.

I know a few people who don't have Facebook at all (myself included) and a few more who resentfully, grudgingly use it "because there's people I would never hear from if I didn't"... but most people are happy little products, aren't they?

And they are products, and Facebook treats them as such, and gets away with it due to it's untouchable position. It's just the way things are done. You have to use Facebook to get anywhere these days, and so you have to put up with the way Facebook does things or you don't get anywhere.

Facebook is the Harvey Weinstein of the internet.

The Window Man is here

Oct. 13th, 2017 01:01 pm
miss_s_b: (Mood: Kill me)
[personal profile] miss_s_b
The windows in our house have needed mending for ages. Today is the day the landlord finally sent the window man round. I am looking after the dogs in a room where he doesn't need to go, and working from my laptop (boss has me doing research into arcane bits of law today).

But the window man is here.

And I can't even go to the loo, because one of the windows he is mending is the bathroom window.

And I really really need to pee.

Typing out a blog post helps, right?

The Blood is the Life for 13-10-2017

Oct. 13th, 2017 11:00 am
miss_s_b: (Default)
[personal profile] miss_s_b

Friday Five (via [community profile] thefridayfive)

Oct. 13th, 2017 10:36 am
miss_s_b: (Default)
[personal profile] miss_s_b
1) What is the first song you remember from your childhood?

Now I'm Here by Queen.


2) What is the first music you purchased with your own money?

Poison by Alice Cooper


3) What's a piece of music that you know by heart?

Crikey, there's hundreds. Everything from hymns to classical to Five Finger Death Punch. I'm singing pretty much constantly.


4) What's a song that makes you turn off the music right away?

The Archers Theme tune


5) And why?

Because if I give in to The Archers my radio 4 addiction will be total and complete.

Monthly culture: September 2017

Oct. 13th, 2017 06:10 am
tamaranth: me, in the sun (Default)
[personal profile] tamaranth
02SEP17: The Limehouse Golem, Greenwich Picturehouse

Read more... )

14SEP17: Outlaws to In-Laws, King's Head Theatre
Read more... )
20SEP17: Kingsman: The Golden Circle, Wimbledon Odeon
Read more... )
21SEP17: Giselle, English National Ballet at Sadler's Wells
Read more... )
30SEP17: The Tempest, Greenwich Theatre
Read more... )

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