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a [wordless agonized keening] type of link roundup March 23, 2019

Posted by Erin Ptah in News Roundup.
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Key members of the Trump administration pushed a plan to sell nuclear power plants to Saudi Arabia in the months after the inauguration despite objections from members of the National Security Council and other senior White House officials.”

“A LT in the US Coast Guard was arrested [the week of Feb 20] for drug and gun charges. It looked like a run of the mill case until the detention memo filed yesterday. He had a hit list, contacts with white supremacists, guns, and, again, was [a Coast Guard] assigned to HQ.

“Contrary to a lot of guilt-tripping pleas for us all to take the bus more often to save the world, your individual choices are probably doing very little to the world’s climate. The real impact comes on the industrial level, as more than 70 percent of global emissions come from just 100 companies.”

“189 calls were made from 46 sites, raising new questions about working conditions. One ex-employee said ‘breakdowns [are] a regular occurrence’ at Amazon.

“London ended up with all of the gold and silver that should have gone directly to the Indians in exchange for their exports. This corrupt system meant that even while India was running an impressive trade surplus with the rest of the world – a surplus that lasted for three decades in the early 20th century – it showed up as a deficit in the national accounts because the real income from India’s exports was appropriated in its entirety by Britain.”

Trump’s shutdown [did] cost the U.S. economy $5 billion in lost output every two weeks it continues based on the administration’s own impact estimate. That’s $2.5 billion per week, $357 million per day, or $15 million per hour.”

Here’s a list of all the awful things done the Trump Administration has done so far. […] It’s also a reminder that policies enacted by the Trump Administration can be long lasting and cumulative, which is easy to forget in a political culture which jumps around from controversy to controversy, forgetting them as it goes.”

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Burns & Allen Transcript: Kleptomaniacs (1948-10-07) March 21, 2019

Posted by Erin Ptah in Fandom.
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The year is 1948. Ballpoint pens are invented but not common, because they cost the modern equivalent of $170 each; “How” being mistaken for “Indian language” is, unfortunately, still considered witty; and Gracie is trying to do something special for George’s birthday.

This is one of my favorite episodes when it comes to the George/Gracie relationship. For once George gets the wrong end of the stick; Gracie gets it too, but a different wrong end (it’s a complicated stick); they both end up thinking the other one is in danger, and are immediately ready to go to the mat for each other.

Download the episode here, watch on YouTube here, or read the transcript below.

George and Gracie

(more…)

a backlog of links about dirty industry secrets March 12, 2019

Posted by Erin Ptah in News Roundup.
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What’s a dirty secret that everybody in your industry knows about but anyone outside of your line of work would be scandalized to hear?” Twitter thread, both DMs in screenshot and direct replies.

“An investigation found that [Tokyo Medical University] had reduced all medical school applicants’ initial test scores by 20%, before inflating the scores of male applicants’ exams.

“Some executives argued that women’s traditional expertise at painstaking activities like knitting and weaving manifested precisely this mind-set. (The 1968 book “Your Career in Computers” stated that people who like “cooking from a cookbook” make good programmers.)”

“At first, the military doctors in Germany refused to admit her, saying it was just period cramps […] Finally, almost exactly a year after Lipe first started experiencing the pain, a private, nonmilitary reproductive endocrinologist and general surgeon in Jacksonville, Florida, figured out what was wrong with her — multiple small pelvic hernias caused by the ill-fitting body armor. It took two one-hour appointments, her records show, and they knew exactly how to fix it.

Somehow, my personal autonomy, my health and my comfort didn’t rate high enough to outrank the desires of my future, then-nonexistent partner. And nothing I said could change my doctors’ minds, not the stories about my frequently dislocating hips, my mom’s complicated pregnancies or the increased rate of miscarriage and preterm labor for EDS patients.” (Inconsistent attempts to use trans-inclusive language, but the point is serious.)

The photo went viral because many viewers noticed how beautiful the subject was before they noticed his prosthetic leg. The image also landed me in Facebook jail. Facebook deleted it and suspended my account for six months. It was only after a huge public outcry and media inquiry did Facebook reinstate the photo, but shortly after reinstating it, they once again removed it, and my account was again banned.”

“11 percent of users older than 65 shared a hoax, while just 3 percent of users 18 to 29 did. Facebook users ages 65 and older shared more than twice as many fake news articles than the next-oldest age group of 45 to 65, and nearly seven times as many fake news articles as the youngest age group (18 to 29).

#WizardWorld Cleveland 2019: livetweeting roundup March 11, 2019

Posted by Erin Ptah in Fandom.
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Did my first Wizard World this year — not in Artists Alley, didn’t get under the sign-up cutoff, but I’m so local (to the Cleveland version) that it made sense to go just for market research. (Also, fun. There was that too.)

So here’s how that went.

Friday

guy stopped at a booth trying to guess the ID of a magnificent X-Men cosplayer. She’s trying to give hints, saying her powerset, striking the movie-poster pose…he seems to be naming random well-known female characters, nobody she looks like at all.
6:21 PM – 8 Mar 2019

I walk past behind him and call, “Psylocke!” Cosplayer lights up, nods/waves. Dude doesn’t even register it, keeps trying to guess.

Kinda wish I’d stayed around long enough to hear whether he ever figured it out.
6:26 PM – 8 Mar 2019

He was in anime cosplay, so a genuine geek! Just…overconfident about the percentage of X-Men lore he’d picked up. (Dude, the lady wearing jet-black hair is not iconic redhead Jean Grey, nor iconic skunk-stripe-head Rogue…)
8:30 PM – 8 Mar 2019

Kid watching me draw: “Wow! That looks like a real cartoon!”

And then he asked if my eraser was a lucky rock.
7:57 PM – 8 Mar 2019

Jewelry vendor showed off rack of earrings, earnestly told me “they’re for pierced ears, but we can make any of them into clip-ons too!”

…I think she was just rattling off a stock speech out of nerves, because there’s no way I look THAT young.
9:53 PM – 8 Mar 2019

Saturday

#WizardWorldCleveland gotta get some loud-voiced volunteers to hold up Line Ends Here signs.

The entry queue has aisles drawn in tape on the floor. Nobody’s looking at those, just milling around in a confused blob, and blocking the escalators while they’re at it.
3:26 PM – 9 Mar 2019

Audience member at Diversity in Comics panel complains about “the need to put a gay black trans character in every TV show.” Uh, what shows are you watching, and can I get recs?
3:49 PM – 9 Mar 2019

Complaints about “forced” diversity and how it doesn’t work…in between acknowledging the smash successes of Miles Morales, Kamala Khan, and black Nick Fury. Guys. Listen to yourselves.
4:02 PM – 9 Mar 2019

…anyway, the current Leif & Thorn arc involves a pan black trans woman, who is also a single mom with a disability, which is not something you have to “force” because none of those traits make any of the others less likely! That’s not how it works!
11:42 PM – 9 Mar 2019

Trauma presentation that followed was way better prepared and researched. (Speaker even used “triggered” accurately!) And he’s persevered really well through the lack of any techie stopping by to hook up his Powerpoint.
5:14 PM – 9 Mar 2019

First con I’ve been to that was so vendor-focused. There’s only about 3 programming things going on at any time…and most of them are *outside* the gated threshold where they check wristbands.
6:20 PM – 9 Mar 2019

Inside is the dealers’ room/artist alley, and lots of carefully-scheduled autograph sessions. Plus a few live drawing type events, a photoshoot booth, and places to play games/read manga.
6:23 PM – 9 Mar 2019

Also a stage with live musical performances, but it’s right by the entrance, so you can hear perfectly fine from the lobby. You could show up without a ticket and have most of the non-shopping part of the experience for free.
6:27 PM – 9 Mar 2019

Indie comics panel. Q: why indie? Most panelists talk about the various joys and advantages of going your own route. Last one in the line says “Marvel told me no.”
6:47 PM – 9 Mar 2019

… and the less funny follow-up is, he stood in line to get Marvel portfolio reviews for years, followed their recommendations, finally someone said “you really are improving, we’ve seen, it’s great, but we still won’t hire you because your style is too urban.”
6:49 PM – 9 Mar 2019

MC of the costume contest, pre-show banter with the audience, someone mentions Evangelion. “Is THAT how you pronounce it??”
8:57 PM – 9 Mar 2019

I only came here to sit in the back and listen to entertaining banter while I draw, but now I’m legitimately invested in who wins.
9:24 PM – 9 Mar 2019

Only an honorable mention for Flamenco Wonder Woman? She was robbed.
9:30 PM – 9 Mar 2019

Well-deserved prizes for color-changing Sleeping Beauty and gorgeous ballgown Him!

The other winners had high quality and technical precision, but my favorites are the ones that do something special and different with the characters.
9:36 PM – 9 Mar 2019

A stunningly detailed Ruby and Sapphire were also robbed, btw. Had the bad luck to end up in crowded and competitive categories, but even so…
9:39 PM – 9 Mar 2019

Sunday

I’ve been wearing my Kyuubei hat all weekend, and not a single person has accepted a contract to be a magical girl :(
12:55 PM – 10 Mar 2019

First person in the room for the @3geekspodcast pre-recording banter. At least one of them considered it!
12:57 PM – 10 Mar 2019

Razzing the audience: “This lady in the back is doing her homework.” Me: it’s a webcomic!

And y’all coulda given me a shoutout. (http://leifandthorn.com , volume 1 on sale now)
1:29 PM – 10 Mar 2019

Honestly bummed to walk out before the end, but the schedule overlapped with the LGBT panel and I wanted this one more.
1:33 PM – 10 Mar 2019

LGBT panel was well worth the whole thing. Speaker didn’t use stage or microphone, just hung out in the seats with about 8 of us clustered around. Lots of feelings.
3:02 PM – 10 Mar 2019

Dithered over a bunch of Sunday deals and multifandom merch, but I’ve only ultimately spent $6. Maybe I’ll circle one last time and look for last-second deals on the way out…
3:06 PM – 10 Mar 2019

Secret blog-only follow-up: I got a cookie. When I walked past one of the fandom snack booths, there was a Batman-themed cookie, and I considered getting it for my aunt (her cat’s name is Batman), but it was unnervingly expensive.

So I told myself I’d come back at the very end, and in the last 30 minutes, I did. There were finally some low-price deals — and the Batman cookie was one of only 2 left on the plate. I figured it was a sign.

Monday Fanworks Roundup: Doctor Who, Steven Universe, Houseki no Kuni, and more March 4, 2019

Posted by Erin Ptah in But I'm A Cat Person, Leif & Thorn, Works Roundup.
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But I’m A Cat Person
Eight Amazing Years (art | ensemble | worksafe)

Leif & Thorn
Chibi Ensemble, stage 3 (chibis | a whole mess of characters | worksafe)
Character Height Chart V (art | Artie, D10, Pania, Juniper, Alruna | worksafe)
Remodeling (short comic | Hyacinth, Hazel, Vine | PG)
Starlit Trio (art | Cedar, Holly, Ivy | worksafe)

Doctor Who/Muppet Show
Muppet Doctors – Thirteen (art | Janice!Thirteen | worksafe)

Steven Universe/Houseki no Kuni
Diamonds versus Diamonds (art | White, Blue, Yellow, Pink, Dia, Bortz, Yellow | worksafe)

General/Miscellaneous
Chibi Max and Herald (reward chibis, worksafe)
Agender Pride Stamp (stamp)
Nonbinary Pride Stamp (stamp)
Rainbow Frame (art nouveau frame)

This Week in Leif & Thorn:
Holly finally meets the famous Cedar, and schools him in…very legitimate magical traditions.

So it turns out in the eighth Temeraire book, the hero gets amnesia February 28, 2019

Posted by Erin Ptah in Erin Watches.
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and of course he remembers his life right up to the start of the first book, but nothing from afterward, and it’s the greatest thing ever.

The rest of the characters have been cautioned not to tell him about anything that might give him a “shock.” Let’s see how well that goes.

Temeraire: Back away from this human, he’s my captain!

Laurence: what

Temeraire: And also, an adopted Prince of China!

Laurence: whAT

Temeraire: Laurence, I’m really sorry that I didn’t precipitate a major international conflict to rescue you sooner, please don’t be mad

Laurence: um???

Granby: Oh dear, now you have to re-learn that we have women serving as officers, including this teenage girl in your crew

Laurence: whomst

Granby: Also, these two African kids, whom you took on after…uhhhh…let’s not talk about the thing in Africa. Or the thing with the Inca Empire. Or your current rank and status with the military.

Laurence: uh

Admiral Roland (in a letter): you’re doing great, sweetie <3

Laurence: UHHH

Temeraire: No, of course you aren’t married, and that teenage girl is not your secret daughter!

Laurence: oh thank god

Temeraire: After all, you’ve only been getting it on with her mom for five years, and when you did propose, you got turned down

Laurence: WHAT

Temeraire: It’s fine, she probably wouldn’t want to move to Australia anyway

Laurence: wha

Temeraire: you know, the place we got exiled to? after the whole treason thing?

Laurence: W T ACTUAL F

Granby’s secret boyfriend: …yes…I’ve been awkward around you because of the…treason…definitely not any other sensitive personal info you might remember learning about at any moment

Laurence: ffffffff–

Temeraire: oh no, now you hate me, and you don’t even know the worst of it, which is that…because of me…you lost ten thousand pounds

Laurence: …and?

Temeraire: Uh. Apparently you forgot this too?? Ten thousand pounds is a lot of money

 

Fandom Trumps Hate bidding is now open! February 26, 2019

Posted by Erin Ptah in Fandom.
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FTH is a fanwork auction to raise money for a whole bunch of good causes. Here’s their 2019 list of nonprofits. When you win an auction, you don’t pay the creator of the fanwork — you donate the money to the cause of your choice.

As usual, I’m offering fanart! Any fandom, and/or original characters; any ship.

Check my bidding spreadsheet to see the current going price, and place your bid here!

Monday Works Roundup, 2/18 (Paisley Brickstone, Sailor Moon, Supernatural, and more) February 18, 2019

Posted by Erin Ptah in But I'm A Cat Person, Leif & Thorn, Works Roundup.
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But I’m A Cat Person
All Torted Up (art | Kara Lynn, Poe, Patrick, Reseda, Cybele | worksafe)
Gold and White (art | all the Beings | worksafe)
Steppin’ out (sketch | Bianca/Emma | worksafe)

Leif & Thorn
Fancy Iona (art | Iona | worksafe)
Woman in Black, Mage in Off-White (sketches | Acai, WiB | worksafe)

Paisley Brickstone
Kiddie Hue-mans (art | hue-mans | worksafe)

Sailor Moon
Conspicuous Princesses (art | Chibiusa, Hotaru | worksafe)

Supernatural
Monochrome Wincest (sketch | Sam/Dean | worksafe)

General/Miscellaneous
Webcomic Woes 27 – Age difference (comic, G)
Lesbian Pride Stamp (stamp)
Genderqueer Pride Stamp (stamp)

This Week in But I’m A Cat Person:
A major plot point turns on “some lizards have detachable tails.”

This Week in Leif & Thorn:
A misunderstanding is repaired, and Elisa makes future plans.

Good things. (Candy invention, migrant citizenship, Ursula Le Guin being awesome, and more) February 12, 2019

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“At first the brothers printed the sayings by hand. Since the lozenges were fairly large, they could accommodate long statements (Victorian favorites included “How long shall I have to wait? Pray be considerate” and “Please send a lock of your hair by return mail”).” The origin of Sweethearts.

“Impressive as this finding about hemimastigotes is on its own, what matters more is that it’s just the latest (and most profound) of a quietly and steadily growing number of major taxonomic additions. Researchers keep uncovering not just new species or classes but entirely new kingdoms of life — raising questions about how they have stayed hidden for so long and how close we are to finding them all.” Guys, we found a New Science Thing.

“I emerged from the complicated underworld of toxic shock syndrome science with far more than I bargained for, including a lecture from an elderly man on the “art of making love,” a possible TSS-related upside to having sex early and often, multiple accusations of collusion, and the story of a bitter, decades-long rivalry between two prominent microbiologists. I also learned that everything you think you know about tampons, period sex, and toxic shock syndrome is probably wrong.”

“On this page, you will find more information about The Green Hosting Directory. For every country, the list starts with Partners: the [Internet] hosting companies that provide proof of their green claim online.”

“Greece has awarded citizenship to three migrant fishermen – two Egyptians and an Albanian – who rescued Greeks from a devastating fire near Athens last July. At a ceremony the Greek President, Prokopis Pavlopoulos, thanked the fishermen for showing “solidarity and humanity” by rescuing dozens of people. ‘You are now European citizens too, and so you can teach all our partners who don’t realise the values of Europe, to do what they ought to do.’

Le Guin – sanguine, curious, unconcerned – looked around at the Venus of Willendorf replica, the flyers advertising knitting circles and separatist meetings, the box set of Dykes to Watch Out For, and said, ‘I like it.’ She walked further into the store. ‘Let’s look around.’”

Monday Works Roundup, 2/4/19 February 4, 2019

Posted by Erin Ptah in Leif & Thorn, Works Roundup.
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Leif & Thorn
Cuddling (sketch | Kale, Caiomhe | worksafe)
Fire and Ice (art | Kale, Leif | worksafe)
Take My Hand, Let’s Dance (art | Leif/Thorn | worksafe)

O Sarilho
Grumpy Boy, Loves Stars (chibi | Nikita | worksafe)

Rainbow Six Siege
Rainbow Mira (chibi | Mira | worksafe)

General/Miscellaneous
Asexual Pride Stamp (stamp, worksafe)
Ally Pride Stamp (stamp, worksafe)

This Week in But I’m A Cat Person:
Lightning strikes twice!

This Week in Leif & Thorn:
New storyline! Elisa shares a bit with Leif about her family history.