taste_is_sweet: (And he will actually kill you)
Hello, my beauties, and Happy Friday! Monday the March Break officially begins and I will be going to Canada with my kid to visit the fam. It should be awesome.

While I readily admit that I, too, can be at times almost as awesome as a trip to Canada to visit the fam, I am, as I'm fairly sure you're aware, human and therefore extremely fallible. Occasionally more fallible than your average bear, so to speak. There have been times, I admit, when the only thing keeping my mouth shut or my fingers still is the fact that I don't like hurting peoples' feelings. I am a big adherent to the rule that if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all (or just hit the back button). I've also gotten pretty good at keeping things to myself.

All that typed, between you and me there have been many, many times with I've just wished I could, for example, leave a comment on someone's fic or their post that completely represented what I was thinking. Now, I would never actually do that (see above). I'm not generally a mean person and life is too short not to be nice.

But. And I hope I'm not alone in this, but. That hasn't stopped me from compiling a list of things I could say, but have and will not. I've included it here, because I can.

I hope some of you might unleash your baser selves and contribute in the comments, bearing in mind that this is nothing but venting, not aimed at anyone. Just devilish self-indulgence that I won't partake in out loud again.

I just think that we're entitled to what we feel, and allowed to feel things even if they're bad. The point is not to inflict those feelings on anyone else. Which is why they're under a cut.

But if you'd like to join me, there's plenty of room on the dark side. And we have cookies.
Mind the gap. )
Thank you for your forbearance and understanding. Now I'm going to take a shower.
taste_is_sweet: (Vague)
I tell ya, O, best-beloveds, sometimes I think that Americans have a hell of a lot of trouble with the metric system.

Now, I readily admit that the basis for my hypothesis is pretty thin (compelling argument though it is, the loss of NASA's Mars Orbiter due to engineers using imperial units instead of metric happened way back in 1999). But when I come across conversion errors, they tend to be kind of mind-boggling.

Like the sci-fi book I read some years ago, where the narrator was describing that 18 degrees Celsius was cold enough for his breath to mist. That's around 64 Fahrenheit, which is definitely too warm for ice crystals. Unless the author actually meant 18 degrees kelvin, which is -255 C or -427 F, in which case, yes. Definitely breath misting. And a much shorter novel due to the protagonist instantly freezing to death.

Admittedly, that novel was also published in the 90s, when dinosaurs roamed the Earth and you couldn't just type '18 degrees C in F' and get an instant answer. But in 2012, there was no excuse for messing up the metric versus imperial thing. And yet, the sci-fi novel I'm currently reading was first published in 2012, and messed it up within the first few pages.

Overall, I've been enjoying Gravitational Attraction by Angel Martinez immensely. Unlike loads of other M/M novels, there are very cool female characters in it, and the main character isn't white. And so far the plot's compelling with H/C in spades (which, you may remember, I love like kittens).

Pictured with his girlfriend Nicole Alexander, who is 5' 2" (1.57 m). She can literally climb him like a tree.
Shaq and girlfriend

But--and you knew there was one--the love interest is described at being "well over" two meters tall. Well over two meters, people. And yet, somehow, the crew of the space courier that rescues the guy can find pants long enough for him. Though really, as a reader that was the least of my concerns.

Here's the thing: Two meters is 6 feet, 7 inches. "Well over" that is getting into Shaquille O'Neal territory (He's 7' 1", which is 2.16 meters).

Unfortunately, so far the novel hasn't said how tall the protagonist is, but he's clearly of Japanese descent and described as slender and obviously smaller than his giant boyfriend. So I'm going to guess not much over 5' 10" or 1.78 m (As of 2004, the average height in Japan was 5' 6" or 1.59 meters, so I'm being generous).

This is close to what it would look like, as demonstrated by Peter Meyhew, who is 7' 2" (2.19 m) and Harrison Ford, who is a mere 6' 1" (1.85 m):

You gotta admit though, it is kind of adorable.
Peter Mayhew

I'm not sure if that discrepancy is what the author intended, especially if his or her slender, small protagonist is shorter than Harrison Ford. Which he probably is. Especially as I'm fairly certain the size difference wouldn't end at height, so to speak.

Because, if the apparently seven-foot tall love interest is, shall we say, proportionate everywhere (and there was specific mention made of him being lucky to find a pair of boots that fit. And you know what they say about men's foot sizes), then, well. I just hope he goes for a lot of preparation, that's all I'm saying. I mean, sure, Shaq is obviously not pulling a Vlad the Impaler on Nicole every time they knock boots (which they can't, because he's too tall). But, you know, babies come out of there; there's a certain amount of leeway.

Not quite so much with the menfolk, I'm thinking. And ass-babies only exist in fanfic.

So, either the author is going with the reverse meaning of 'size doesn't matter' (that's a myth, for all my SGA homies), or 'two meters' doesn't mean what he or she thinks it means. Either way, like a hapless NASA orbiter in the hands of Lockheed Martin engineers, there's going to be a lot of crashing and burning. Or at least burning.

Definitely a lot of burning.

taste_is_sweet: (Bad Decisions)
In other words, Hurt/Comfort Bingo time, y'all!

Now, much as I totally adore H/C (seriously, I love it like kittens), last year I was only able to fill three squares of my card. Alas, I did not get a bingo.

I'm a little more sanguine this year, because I've already filled my first square, and will hopefully have my second square filled by Monday. I'm feeling pretty good about this, guys. Comfortable, even, as opposed to hurt. Heh.

And here's my card. (You notice the convenient links in the square(s), right? Right?)

Abandonment Issues blood loss Suicide Attempt bites Possession / Mind Control
Invisibility restrained hunger / starvation time travel gone wrong On The Run
branding poltergeist WILD CARD (Comfort Item) Telepathic Trauma Purgatory
pandemics and epidemics Captivity dystopia Forced Soulbonding Clones
Bruises Electrocution Taking Care of Somebody Grief Forced to Hurt Somebody

taste_is_sweet: (Target Acquired!)
Raise your hand if you like Hurt/Comfort, which I'm sure you all do because anything else is as inconceivable as hating kittens (I love kittens; The icon is an in-joke with my sister [livejournal.com profile] squeakyoflight. No kittens were hurt during the writing of this post).

We love you, Bucky!
Bucky falls cropped & screened

For anyone not up on the fannish lingo, "Hurt/Comfort" stands for the wonderful creative exercise of tormenting the shit out of a favorite character--this is called 'whumping'--and then having your other favorite character(s) take care of him.

Often the whumpee is the hero. Almost equally often he's the Lancer, The Darkhorse, The Co-Hero and/or that one beloved character whom nobody else understands. But if he's popular, at some point someone is going to hurt him. Very, very badly. Occasionally even the writers of the original material, though rarely as frequently or as terribly as the fans would like.

Not bad, but he's still standing.
Hurt Steve

(And I'm using 'him' because I think I've read a fic where a female character was the whumpee maybe once since I started reading fanfiction. Not that I read fanfiction...Okay, yes. Yes I do.)

I'm bringing this up because the movie Captain America: The Winter Soldier came out recently (You may have seen it). And after watching, my brilliant and adorable 12 year-old niece, who previously said that Captain America was her favorite, has now switched her allegiance entirely to the eponymous anti-hero of the subtitle. Why? Because of the suffering.

Yep, she's within throwing distance of her teens, and she has already understood that, while horrible to witness in real life, physical and mental injuries improve the attractiveness of a fictional character exponentially. And the Fighting Man for Lousy Climates gets that in spades. Like the kind you could use to dig a deep hole to pitch him into.

I love my niece, and I love that she's been bitten by the H/C bug. I love that there's this wonderful fangurl in the making. I love that she will probably write fanfic herself someday, and I'll get to share it with her. I love how she makes me remember being a kid and telling my sister fanfic stories for hours on end without knowing what fanfic even was, and populating them with my fictional crushes at the time. And, yes, treating them mercilessly and loving every second.

I have a hypothesis on why, exactly, H/C is so awesome (and I'm sure especially awesome among women), but you should probably just read this instead. I admit, however, that most of the time I don't really care about the why. I just love it.

Like kittens. And don't we all love kittens?

Picture of Bucky having a very bad day courtesy of [livejournal.com profile] lastsongs at [livejournal.com profile] grande_caps; Picture of Steve's moderately-acceptable injuries courtesy of Swannee's Screencaps.

taste_is_sweet: (Aliens Made Me)
Yesterday, as some of you may recall, I was lamenting my lack of foresight which prevented me from making millions with dinosaur erotica.

Well, no more, my friends! Here is the cover of my upcoming debut novel in the exciting and untapped genre of porn with ancient sea-reptiles. Naturally I had to find a new pen-name, to avoid any public ridicule when I eventually win the Nobel Prize for Literature.

I decided to emulate the artistry of the Christie Sims covers, because nothing says classy dino-porn like 10 minutes with Photoshop.
 photo BookCover.jpg

Leeoolaa, the great sorceress of her seafaring tribe, is determined to end the famine plaguing her people. She takes a raft and sets out alone on the ocean with one goal: to offer herself to the Old Man of the Sea--the Ichthyosaur--as a sacrifice to ensure the survival of her tribe.

Naked, provisionless save for her magic protective amulet and her determination, Leeoolaa expects to die. What she doesn't expect is that the Old Man of the Sea will accept her offer, but not as a sacrifice.

No. The Ichthyosaur wants Leeoolaa as his mate, and more: as the mother of a new tribe of half-men, half-Ichthyosaurs, who he will use to rule the ocean!

Now Leeoolaa has a to make a choice: stay as the Ichthyosaur's love-slave and brood mare, or return to her tribe and turn her back on the greatest watery ecstasy she's ever known?


Awesome, right? I can't wait to sit back and rake in the dough. Oh, and I'll totally make covers for anyone who wants to join me in my new, lucrative career of anachronistic, physiologically impossible porn. Just $5.00 each. Which is apparently market value for that level of artistry and talent.

(The pregnant woman and ocean background come from FreeDigitalPhotos.Net, and were taken by Paul Goody and foto76, respectively. I couldn't find the source for the Ichthyosaur.)

And I'm using this for the Difficult Pregnancy square of my [livejournal.com profile] hc_bingo card, for obvious reasons.

taste_is_sweet: (Pills)
Yeah, so, if everyone's saying you need to get the flu shot? Don't wait until January to do it. Because chances are it'll be too late by then. Like it was with me! It turns out that my poor little boy had already caught the flu a few days before we got the vaccine, and my husband and I caught it from him. Which was well-deserved, considering how much we suck as parents for not getting him the vaccine earlier.

Having the flu sucks, by the way. In case any of you were wondering. ::whines::

Don't let this happen to you, kids! Get the flu vaccine!
taste_is_sweet: (Imagination Movers!)
Because I first read about this on [livejournal.com profile] ariadnes_string's LJ and then saw that [livejournal.com profile] alyse and all the other cool kids were doing it, I've decided to sign up for [livejournal.com profile] hc_bingo.

This might seem like an exercise in futile insanity (I'd say 'whimsical insanity' but I don't do whimsy), but it's not, I swear! I have a plan.

The first part of the plan is to take merciless advantage of the fact that you don't have to fill in the entire card to succeed at this thing and that you can also take an entire year to do it. The second part of the plan is to use the prompts as inspiration for original fic*, because one can never have too much inspiration and if I do this right I might just end up with a collection of stories I can either try to get into professional anthologies or self-publish on Amazon.com.

I'm stoked about this, I have to say. Pretty much everything I write turns into H/C eventually, and I'm already having a great time thinking of how I can use some of these prompts to help expand vignettes I've written into full novellas or novels. Heck, nearly the whole card seems tailor-made for the Pape and Danforth thing I've been poking at. Well, maybe not the "Archaic Medicine"... (ETA: Naturally the first one I filled was "Archaic Medicine".)

Anyway, here's my card under the cut. Pretty cool, huh? Except the "Poltergeist" prompt, because ghosts kind of freak me out.

My hc_bingo card )



*Except for the SGA fanfic I'm going to write for [livejournal.com profile] raphe1 because of her winning and extremely awesome bid at [livejournal.com profile] help_japan.
taste_is_sweet: (Pills)
For them's what might be interested, there is a multi-fandom commentfic meme going on at [livejournal.com profile] ariadnes_string's LJ (don't know her, but the woman has good ideas).

This particular meme is all about fevers, which as we all know tend to be awesome in fiction and kind of horrible in real life. (My mom got Dengue fever right after a Habitat for Humanity trip to Haiti many, many years ago, and at one point her poor brain was so fried that she honestly thought she'd been a victim of a voodoo curse. Definitely not fun to witness at the time.)

I've gone through all the comment prompts and read almost all of the finished fic(lets), and I've been grinning like the wicked, H/C junkie fangirl that I am. Except for one little thing that I just don't get.

So far, every writer who's actually said what temperature the suffering, delirious woobie has reached has written it as being no higher than 102 Fahrenheit (about 38.9 Celsius). Now, I've had a fever that high and let me say in no uncertain terms that it sucks balls, but that's nowhere near high enough to cause delirium.

Generally, people don't start hallucinating or thinking they've been cursed until their fever hits 104 F (40 miserable degrees Celsius). Temperatures of 105 (40.5) and up are where you drag your raging teammate outside into the blizzard so you can bury him in snow before the brain and organ damage starts.

Now, it is true that the faster a person's temperature rises, the more likely they are to have febrile seizures. But a normally climbing fever that gets to 102/38.9 will probably make you want to die, but it won't make you see the Grim Reaper and his flying monkeys coming through the window to help you get right on that. There's a good rule-of-thumb chart right here.

Obviously not everyone will react to a higher-than-normal body temperature in the same way, but it still struck me as odd that a temperature 102/38.9 would be considered dangerous. Have any of you guys had different experiences? Am I wrong? Enlighten me, FList! :D (Passes out the Tylenol and Paracetamol.)
taste_is_sweet: (Daniel Hush)
Things I have learned at lunch while trying to make myself a soft-boiled egg:


--Putting one egg and water on the stove for ten minutes will result in a soft-boiled egg; putting two eggs and water on the stove for thirteen minutes will result in an almost entirely hard-boiled egg.

--It's a good idea to remember you need egg cups before boiling the eggs.

--A vitamin bottle is not a good substitute for an egg cup.

--Holding a boiled egg so it won't fall out of the vitamin bottle while you're trying to eat it will burn the pads of your fingers.

--Not holding a boiled egg so you won't burn your fingers means it falls out of the vitamin bottle.

--Eggshell doesn't taste very good.

Now I'm going to see how much egg cups cost on eBay.
taste_is_sweet: (Aliens Made Me)
I may have slid a disposable safety razor across my forearm to see if it was possible to cut yourself deliberately doing that.

Guess what? You can! Not very deeply, but it sure stings. Took a few seconds for the blood to well up, too. But there was blood, and that's what I needed to find out.

I am not planning on becoming a cutter, by the way ([livejournal.com profile] wpadmirer couldn't stand two of them. Heh), just in case any of you were wondering if I'd lost my mind. Nope, this was just pure research. Though perhaps a tad ill-planned. Just a tad.

I kind of didn't think it would work. Or I wouldn't have done it. Most likely.

But hey--authenticity in fiction is what makes it great, eh? Right? Right?

::coughs:: I'll just be over there. Getting a Band-aid.
taste_is_sweet: (Harlock Skull)
[livejournal.com profile] niamh_sage made me aware of this video by Rammstein for their song 'Ohne Dich' ('Without You'). The first time I watched it my son wandered in (of course) just before the lead vocalist Till Lindemann fell off the mountain his band was climbing. (The song actually talks about going 'into the woods', but the video is excellent, trust me.) After explaining at great length and speed that it was just a story! No one really got hurt! And look--his friends are going back for him!, Javier decided that it was the coolest movie ever and we've since watched it at least thirty times. He calls it 'the backpack song', because of the knapsacks the band nobly schlep on their way up the mountain. He's also tried to sing along, which is both endearing and hilarious because about all he can manage is to repeat the 'Ohne Dich' a beat behind the lyrics.

I wish I could remember how he describes the action to me well enough to transcribe it, because it's adorable and really, really funny. I explained what was happening the first time around, so he repeats most of that back to me in his lovely, three-year-old way that involves repeated phrases and circular logic ('he hurt his leg, and his friends go back for him because he hurt his leg!'), and the absolute assurance that Lindemann's sleeping on the top of the mountain, rather than dead.

So, long, rambling stuff short, ish, I can't get the song or the video out of my head. So I was thinking of it earlier this evening when I was looking at the damage I managed to do to myself this afternoon when I smacked my son's butt and hit my middle finger surprisingly hard against a concrete drinking fountain (it's not like I was whaling on my kid or anything). I think I burst a blood vessel, since the side under the third joint is noticeably swollen and light purple. I can still bend it and type and all that, but it looks gross.

And, um, that's it, really. I had a really good weekend, though! Grievous injury to my digit notwithstanding. I just wanted to listen to the sound of my fingers typing share.

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