Friday Open Thread

Clever Manka, · Categories: Open Thread

This is not an actual line from the show, perhaps alas.

I couldn’t not use this gif for something. If you’ve never watched Star Trek The Animated Series, I recommend checking it out. It’s not perfect, but I like it, overall, better than the live action show (I have a loving but complicated relationship with Star Trek that I could go on about for days but I’ll spare you).

What small-budget, not terribly-well-known show would you recommend?

212 Responses to “Friday Open Thread”

  1. Kazoogrrl says:

    *screams* HANNIBAL! I mean, according to it's ratings it was not terribly-well-known.

    Oh, the animated show Home Movies, a goddamn gem.

    • Kazoogrrl says:

      Side note, Pussy Riot founder Nadya Tolokonnikova is speaking in Baltimore 2/1

      I'm overbooked and will not be going, though tonight I'm going to a postcard writing get together and checking out the Countable app for tracking some local issues.

    • CleverManka says:

      Hannibal was pretty fucking great, yep. Also I'm 42 seconds in to the first episode of Home Movies and I can already tell I'm probably going to like it. If nothing else, the backgrounds remind me of my fave era of Looney Tunes. Will definitely be checking that out, thank you!

      • Kazoogrrl says:

        It's mostly improvised dialogue, and I actually lake the stilted cadence. And when they get to the rock opera episode, ah, it's one of our favs.

    • vladazhael says:

      Hannibal, yes, definitely. It's such a visually amazing show. Among other amazings.

    • Fancy_Pants says:

      Home movies is so excellent. I probably quote it on a daily basis.

      • Heathered says:

        The only line that has stayed with me forever is, "We've got Shannon, right in the can-non." But it pops into my head with surprising regularity.

        • Kazoogrrl says:

          Kick him in thr butt , kick him in the butt again ! Is used a lot around here.

        • Fancy_Pants says:

          Anytime I wait too long to eat and then get to feast on a big meal "the payoff is totally worth it".

          "I'm talking gaaaaambling money"

          "But all we have is each other and food"

    • Heathered says:

      I'm afraid to even read threads about Hannibal here, but Home Movies is one I'd like to watch all over again. I remember feeling like it was made specifically to make me laugh when I first ran across it.

  2. CleverManka says:

    So, to answer my own question (in addition to ST:TAS), I'll just say due South due South due South! Nothing y'all haven't heard before but it's just SO GREAT.
    <img src=""&gt;

  3. CleverManka says:

    And in life news: I think I've mentioned before that I have a rather distant relationship with my parents. I have no doubts that they love the child they (sort of) raised, but I'm not convinced they understand the person I am today well enough to love me. I haven't bothered repairing the relationship because TBH I don't feel my life is less for the lack of close connections with blood relations. This holiday season, I bought both my parents and my last living grandparent donations to the ACLU.

    I'm putting the rest of this in a reply because it got really fucking long.

    • CleverManka says:

      For my birthday (this coming Tuesday), my mom emailed to ask if I'd like a donation to either the Jewish Defense League or the Democratic National Committee (I told her basically the DNC could go fuck itself and would she consider donating to the SPLC but that's not what this is about). At the bottom of her email was the line "I am so very grateful for your acute sense of injustice and your willingness to speak out for your beliefs." I thought this was her giving me an opening to A Dialogue so I took a deep breath and wrote her this:

      That means a lot, and I'm glad you appreciate my voice, even though I know it might not always correspond with your personal morals.

      It's crucial to evolve our sense of compassion and respect for the vast array of humanity on the planet. I do the best I can to help people who want to do better be better toward each other. As humans, it's in our nature to distrust and fear what we don't understand–whether that's someone of a different color or someone who loves differently or someone who does not meet social and cultural standards of what they "should" be. We must be better than our human natures. There is absolutely no reason to preach anything but love and respect for people who are simply trying to live their lives.

      I understand some Christians feel it's their duty to save, not serve–that punishing non-believers through discriminatory laws is somehow helping save the nation. I hope that is not the case for your church, although from my experience the one time, I fear many are in that camp. I know Daddy joked (?) about working for people who would have fired him if they knew he voted for Obama. I know service to your church is important, and I hope you are putting your energies toward an institution that does not endorse fear and exclusion. I hope that through your small group studies, you and Daddy are speaking a message of love and if there is intolerance there, let it be toward those who deserve it. I know there are a lot of white, privileged people in your church, and probably a lot of them voted for Trump. I hope that you are speaking out against hate, fear, and intolerance, even when it isn't comfortable or convenient.

      It took her a couple days to respond, and she responded with "I shared your email with your dad. We both appreciate your forthrightedness…not sure that is a word. One day I hope we can be together to discuss the points you touch on. That would be nice."

      And I'm like, girl, there is nothing to discuss here (I mean, not exactly that, but pretty close), to which she wrote back "Just being a mommy who hasn't seen her daughter for over a year."

      And now I'm trying to decide if I want to write her back explaining how I do not want to come visit and I will not be coming to visit if I don't feel they are willing to support people like me and my friends from the comfort of their cushy pews in their super rich white church.

      I mean, I can write that? But I have so many other things I'd rather do. Like writing for this site. Or working on this TFA fanfic that I may or may not have started last weekend.

      Why do families have to be so exhausting? And I mean, mine's not even that bad, just sorta…tedious in their conservatism.

      • RoseCamelia says:

        Delay is OK, if that feels right. Make a calendar reminder to respond in a few weeks, maybe. Your gut knows how long you need.

        Or something like, "I'm looking for your support of people like me and my friends. Let me know how you're doing that, please." Then let it rest until you have evidence of effort.

        You're doing a lot of emotional labor. Which is appropriate for your parents if that's what you *want* to give. But please keep an eye out for when the time is right to stop explaining and just ask questions. You'll know when it's time to sit back and give them more chances to contribute effort to the conversation.

        You are so patient, so thoughtful. I want to be more like you.

      • Kazoogrrl says:

        Yeah, I feel you. My folks are relatively decent, but as old white people who feel screwed by the banks, government, leaders, etc. (particularly financially, as they lost a bunch of retirement savings, and particularly as people who bought into the "work hard, save, and you'll be ok" line) they just aren't there. They haven't examined what they feel, and why, and what's behind it, and how it damages other people and eventually themselves. Thankfully they voted against Trump, and they don't do the church thing, but they definitely aren't standing up for marginalized people, that's for sure. I try to find the common ground we stand on and try to push the boundaries a bit at a time.

        I am a little miffed right now as they forgot my birthday a few weeks ago. I thought about calling them and finally was all eh, whatever.

        • CleverManka says:

          I was talking with the Burgomaster about how it seems weird that I'm more emotionally mature/intelligent than my parents and I can't figure out if it's religion, age, or what. I mean, I feel like they raised me to be better than they are being right now and that makes zero sense to me.

        • RoseCamelia says:

          I'm sorry they forgot your birthday. Your parents, of all people, should remember. Any pain you feel about that is justified. I wish I knew how to virtually stroke your head. I would not do so physically, even if we were in the same room. I can't do that. But I can wish I could.

          They forgot because they are not who they should be. It is not about who you are. You are magnificent just as you are. Happy belated birthday, Kazoogrrl.

          • Kazoogrrl says:

            Thank you! I wasn't totally broken up about it, my mom's had some heath issues lately and I think they've been preoccupied, but, you know. My birthday. My parents. You think they'd remember!

      • jenavira says:

        Dang, that's a lot of hard work you're doing. You don't have to write back if you don't want to. You get to stop communicating with someone who's trying to use emotional manipulation on you, if you want to. But you did a good thing trying to address the things that matter to you, and who knows? Maybe leaving it at that will give your parents something to think about.

      • silverandsnow says:

        You tried, but she doesn't seem to want to engage so I think it's okay to pull back for now and avoid that particular source of exhaustion.

        I hit the wall with my mother about six years ago, that point where I just knew there was nothing I could say that would get through her mindset, so I gave myself permission to stop trying. Some mothers and daughters can be bffs, but not if one side refuses to acknowledge the validity of the other side's viewpoint.

        • CleverManka says:

          You know, that's a good idea. Just let it drop, don't respond, and if (when) she asks this spring when I might visit, I'll revisit the whole "I do not feel safe in your house if you are not willing to speak out in protection of me and my friends" conversation.

          Sorry you went through that with your mom. Ugh.

          • silverandsnow says:

            It was kind of a relief to reach that point, to accept that she wasn't ever going to see my side of things. She's not a bad person, she just tried to raise the daughter she wanted instead of the daughter she actually had. I keep her at a friendly-acquaintance relationship level now, for my own peace of mind.

          • RoseCamelia says:

            You are so wise. Tending your own peace of mind. I'm sorry you didn't have parenting that celebrated who you are. I like who you are. Your wisdom level indicates you value who you are. Rock on!

  4. Kazoogrrl says:

    Ok, so I think my picture of my knife might show up, otherwise give me a few minutes to edit (I'm calling this good enough, quit sucking Flickr). Her name is Zhora. I stabbed myself twice last night and that was BEFORE I put the cutting edge on. I'm hoping to make lomo saltado tonight for her first trip out. My favorite parts were heat tempering the blade and sanding the handle.

    &lt;a data-flickr-embed="true" href="; title="Zhora Knife"&gt;<img src="; width="500" height="281" alt="Zhora Knife">&lt;script async src="//" charset="utf-8"&gt;&lt;/script&gt;

  5. flitworth says:

    That MRA one is one of my favoritest gifs.

    This week I have been utterly distracted by politics. I must find something that I can actively do to counter the administration within the constrictions of being breadwinner and parent. 10yrs ago I could have let caution to the wind and done more. I want to find an org that needs someone who can read docs and distill relevant information in chunks. I can do that and we need thousands of people poring over every piece of paper associated with Trump &c.

    Last night I started drafting a parody song about punching nazis in my head.

    I am now waiting for lunch like its my job.

    • CleverManka says:

      I hope you find a place to put your reading-and-distilling to good use because damn we need people doing that right now.

      Hey, speaking of, the thing is working again, for those who tried yesterday and got an error.

    • jenavira says:

      If you find an organization looking for that kind of work, let me know, because I am good at that kind of thing and I would love for someone to give me assignments.

  6. Absotively says:

    Blood Ties!

    A homicide detective turned private investigator solves supernatural mysteries with the help of her vampire sidekick, Henry Fitzroy (the bastard son of Henry VIII).

    My understanding is that it was cancelled despite pretty good ratings because it didn't fit well with the rest of Lifetime's programming.

    • CleverManka says:

      This sounds so much up my alley I can't believe I never heard of it.

      • Absotively says:

        It's based on the Blood books by Tanya Huff. I like the books better in some ways, but I do really like the show. And the actor who plays Henry is very pretty.

    • flitworth says:

      I find this totally believable given what I recall of Lifetime's offerings. Surely this could get picked up by Netflix…I would watch it.

    • Absotively says:

      The discussion has prompted me to go look at stuff about Blood Ties again, which has in turn reminded me that I forgot to mention the protagonist's perky goth office assistant.

      Also her former partner and lover who is still on the force, but his existence pretty much goes without saying.

      EDIT: Also, Henry writes & draws graphic novels for a living.

    • Kazoogrrl says:

      I'm watching the first episode now, it's both awesome and terrible but whoa is Henry pretty!

      • Absotively says:

        He really is!

        I have rewatched the first three episodes due to this thread. I had forgotten that the third episode involved Voodoo. It was not handled all that well, I think. So that was quite disappointing.

        • Kazoogrrl says:

          Yeah, that and the "vaguely exotic music" for magic stuff.

          I was watching it with headphones on and the sound engineering is awful, and then the sets are badly decorated and WHAT'S WITH ALL THE COLORED LIGHTS and could they maybe make the tension between the leads a little more subtle, and dudes, quit posturing and treat this woman like an intelligent human being. Also, the writing.

          Yet strangely addictive.

          • Absotively says:

            I think Vicki's office might be bigger than my apartment, and it's not a very small apartment. But you can still tell that she's a struggling small business owner because the furniture is used, I guess.

            In episode four, Henry helps Vicki with a case even though it doesn't directly resemble some trauma from his past, so perhaps he has given up on escaping his fate as Vicki's sidekick.

            I really should re-read the books too. I suppose they may also have problems I've forgotten, but I think they were better about a bunch of these things. At the very least, they won't have the music and lighting problems, and I'm pretty sure there were no Voodoo zombies.

          • Kazoogrrl says:

            I made it a little further and hey, Julian Sands, nice!

          • Absotively says:

            Oh, yeah, those episodes are good. I have not got that far in my re-watch yet.

            I should probably start a Blood Ties thread in the Toaster Coven instead of continuing this in an already-four-days-old open thread. Join me there?

          • Kazoogrrl says:

            I hadn't signed up for TC yet, are you taking care of that?

          • Absotively says:

            Can do. Just email admin (AT), so I have your email to give to the forum software.

  7. vladazhael says:

    I used to have a whole list of failed TV shows I was hopelessly devoted to, and now that someone's actually asked, I can't remember the names of any of them. Though that may be for the best, because most of them were from the 90s and are probably of better quality in my memory than they would be in the outside world.

    • CleverManka says:

      That is a problem with a lot of 90s television, true, but we also had stuff like Babylon5 and the X-Files (not that those were what I'd call "low budget" tho). If you think of any, I'd be interested in hearing about them!

  8. Lynn says:

    Back in the pre-original content days, Netflix had this random British sitcom, Hyperdrive, that was clearly supposed to be a riff on Star Trek. It had Miranda Hart in it (which is how I and apparently half the internet remember the name, since "Miranda Hart space comedy" popped up in Google's auto fill super fast). It was so dumb and so low budget and I loved it. I think there's only 2 seasons, and it's British so it's about 12 episodes total.

    We had another kitty health issue yesterday, but this one doesn't appear to be compromising his overall happiness and progress (he's gained almost a full pound since Saturday!) so I will avoid all the gory details until we see how this one plays out. But in short; there are now more types of medication at our house, and no one knows if 2nd issue is related to the first or just a coincidence because he is a very old cat.

    But it is almost the weekend and I am going to play Stardew Valley and Project Highrise and knit stuff and figure out how to contact my state legislators about the bill to lift the late term abortion ban in NY.

    • CleverManka says:

      British sitcom in space? The Burgomaster might love that. He's a fan of Red Dwarf (which I never got into), so I'll pass this along to him.

    • Kazoogrrl says:

      I once had to make a meds chart because I have 5 foster kittens and 1 resident cat all on meds. Oooof.

      A pound! Go him!

      • Lynn says:

        So, amusingly, I work for a nonprofit that has an app with a medication tracker in it because we work in a disease area that can have really complicated medication regimens. So I've been using my work's app to track all the medications and the schedule he's on. I think it will be really useful now that he gets some things twice a day, some things once, and some things "as needed."

    • LaxMom says:

      YES YES YES I was so going to post this! I thought I was the only one who'd ever seen this show. I ordered the british dvd's ages ago and ripped them to CD's by tricking my computer into thinking it was in a different region. I may rewatch them this weekend while doing geology homework.

      • Lynn says:

        I think I discovered it while staying home from work sick one day and for awhile I thought maybe it was a fever dream, because no one else had ever heard of it. I might have to try to track down the DVDs myself.

  9. littleinfinity says:

    Can we also have a guilty pleasures TV thread? Because believe me, I am so ashamed of this, but for lying on the couch with snacks and zero thought required: My Big Fat American Gypsy Wedding. It is the cotton candy of TV. So wrong but so good.

    • jenavira says:

      I binge-watch Food Network reality shows when I don't have any brain left. I cannot tell you how many times I've watched the first season of Worst Cooks in America, but I never get tired of it.

    • Kazoogrrl says:

      She Spies. Like low rent Charlie's Angels. J discovered it while on tour and it is total brain fluff watching.

      • Lynn says:

        I used to watch that back when the weird syndicated shows that came on network were my only options for late night/weekend TV- it really was fun.

  10. jenavira says:

    I've been thinking about rewatching Jeremiah again – it was a dystopian TV show about ten years ahead of its time, starring Luke Perry and Malcolm-Jamal Warner, because apparently I want to torture myself with too-relevant speculative fiction right now. But there's a scene in the second season when Sean Astin's character cusses out a bunch of right-wing authoritarians and then defiantly re-hangs the American flag in a "fuck you, you don't get to take this away from me" gesture, and I feel like I need that right now?

    • CleverManka says:

      "a deadly virus wiped out everyone over the age of puberty"

      TBH, that sounds like it wouldn't necessarily be such a bad thing right now. Oh, hey, it's a Straczynski creation! Nice!

      • jenavira says:

        Most of my under-appreciated TV loves are Straczynski creations, tbh.

        Or Ed Bernero creations, because I just remembered about Third Watch, which was AMAZEBALLS for one season before it turned into a soap opera. And have you ever seen Paul Haggis's other cop show, EZ Streets? Also kind of amazing (although very different from Due South), also tragically dead before its time.

        • CleverManka says:

          "A haunting musical score tinged with mournful Celtic folk tunes underpins this brooding and emotionally complex drama series about the intersecting lives of three deeply flawed men."

          Sub "Sarah McLachlan" for "Celtic folk tunes" and it doesn't sound that different.

    • pseudonymica says:

      That show has been airing on Comet, which is the network tv station we rarely stray from. I've been vaguely prejudiced against it because I'd never heard of it and some astonishingly bad shows get dumped on network tv, but now I am going to give it a chance.

  11. damngoodcoffee says:

    I don't know how low budget this was, but the cop show 'The Unusuals' was hilarious and too short-lived. Cast included Adam Goldberg, Amber Tamblyn, Jeremy Renner (I know he's said some seriously off-putting things but as an actor the man has a dry delivery that I adore), and Harold Perrineau, among other hilarious and wonderful actors.

  12. jenavira says:

    Health update: you guys, I love my doctor. I always expect when I go to the doctor that I'll get my concerns blown off and feel like an idiot for wasting their time, which is in fact what happens when I have to see someone other than my primary, but I went in yesterday and she said yep, you have an infection, nothing you did wrong just one of those things that happens sometimes, and gave me an antibiotic and also a prescription for Vicodin when I said I haven't been able to sleep it's been hurting so much. And told me to take approximately 500% more ibuprofen than I've been taking, which has successfully gotten the swelling down to the point where I can wear a bra without wanting to cry. I actually slept well last night for the first time in a week, and I can see so much difference in my mood already. Life is so much better when you're not in pain every hour of the day.

  13. ru_ri says:

    I am one of those tedious jerks who doesn't watch TV, so I have nothing to recommend. The one perk of this is that I have never actually witnessed Kellyann Conaway speaking. There are a lot of shows (including Due South) that I would like to watch someday if I figure out how to get them on my computer and also find the time to watch them.

    Anyway, I am feeling depressed and demoralized and completely helpless about the implosion of our democracy and our inability to protect the marginalized people of our country. Today I sent postcards to every congressperson in my state asking them to impeach the Mango Menace on the grounds that he's unfit for office (I read the transcript of his TV interview, and I'm just…WTF) and I sent twelve postcards to random democratic senators asking them to Resist. I try to make phone calls but the mailboxes are always full. And I am in the middle of a huge book project with a looming deadline and I just can't focus well. Probably because I wake up at 4 a.m. every day in a panic. And then I remember how lucky I've been NOT to wake up in a panic for most of my life, and I'm like, why can't we make a world where waking up in a panic is unnecessary for anyone?

    TL; DR–I'm doing about as well as any of us right now. Onward! Have a great weekend, all!

    • jenavira says:

      Oooh, postcards are a good idea. Maybe that's what I'll do with my weekend…

    • meat_lord says:

      Great job on sending out postcards to your reps! I hope you can find a little bit of peace and chill for yourself, so that you can focus on your book project and also perhaps wake up later than 4 am.

      • ru_ri says:

        Thank you so much! I'm working on strategies–suggestions from the comment threads and posts on this very site have been my salvation. But this waking up thing is bullshit–I take my sleeping very seriously.

    • CleverManka says:

      I used to be one of those tedious jerks, too! But the Burgomaster loves watching media, especially TV shows, so I've altered my media consumption habits with/for him. I've found a lot of good TV out there if I can stand to sit for long enough (something I've had to do more than I'd like over the past couple years).

      Thank you for your postcards! And best of wishes with the book project. And calming yourself down after waking at 4am.

      • ru_ri says:

        Thank you sweetie! I actually had a bonesetter in Japan who told me I needed to watch TV, because my brain worked too much. (He also thought that I needed to have children, hahahahaha, so I took all his advice with a grain of salt, but still.) I think if I had a roommate or partner who set aside time to watch good TV I would join in, but I can't seem to carve out that time on my own. One day, though…I will enjoy the glory that is Hannibal.

    • Heathered says:

      Book project for your job or our collective future enjoyment, or both? Good luck in whichever case. And in all that spare time you don't have, 1. be gentle with yourself, you are doing a lot! and 2. jot down lyrics as they come to you.

      • ru_ri says:

        The book…well it was one of two absolutely insane cookbooks that were pitched to me and I didn't want to do, so I gave them a bid that was double what I usually ask for…and both got accepted. And I really need the money, so I took them on. And I can't complain, it's actually interesting and I like my work, I just really need more focus than I can muster. In fact, since you mention it, I had set aside these three months to work on a book of my own, but that is going to have to wait a while longer, until I get through these projects.
        Anyway, thank you for your kind recommendations! As for lyrics, indeed, I am working on a song about Mitch McConnell, and maybe I'll share it if it turns out playable.
        Sending warm thoughts and wishes to you–hope things are OK on your end.

    • ru_ri says:

      FWIW, here's a sample (if I can figure out how to get a photo in a comment; I am not good at these things):

      <img src="; border="0" alt=" photo Postcard_zps6yomvg1l.jpg"/>

      And the page with representatives:

      [Edited about six billion times, sorry]

    • sbcardinal says:

      The postcards are great. A tangible way to show that we are resisting. A friend is having a postcard party on Sunday; friends are going to gather, rant on postcards, commiserate, be musical if it's their thing… just keep the feeling of the March going. We both marched in DC, although not together, and bringing that feeling to every day life is my only hope.

      • ru_ri says:

        *solidarity fistbump*

        I love the idea of a postcard party. That's the kind of thing that will help us maintain our momentum! One of the things making me extra sad is the infighting in feminist groups. We gotta find a way to overcome our shit and stand firmly together. (I know it comes down to showing up for each other, and I hope we can do it.)

        A local bar is hosting a sign-making party for the Planned Parenthood support demonstration in a couple weeks, and I'm looking forward to that. Let's keep on keepin' on!

      • Kazoogrrl says:

        I went to one last night. A tip, if you need one: having a doc of the issues to write about and who to send them to. It was overwhelming to have the field wide open and trying to pinpoint who to write about what.

        Some people sat and addressed postcards and then people could take them home to write on later.

  14. BestLaidPlans says:

    Favorite bad tv show: Silk Stalkings. So, so bad. So bad it was good.

    In order to combat political depression, I've taken to listening to happy playlists in the car and making myself sing along on my way to and from work. It gives me enough emotional energy to deal with regular work nonsense, plus political nonsense. Although it isn't much, I can recommend it for a bit of a lift.

    • CleverManka says:

      I am amazed that I never heard of that show (although the early 90s, which is when it started, was during my I-don't-even-own-a-TV era). Wow, that looks delightfully terrible.

      • BestLaidPlans says:

        It is SO BAD. I did manage to get my college roommate hooked on it to the point that she recorded (on VHS, no less) the entire final season so we could watch it together after I finished my first year in grad school.

    • Heathered says:

      My dad and I took great joy in yelling over that show and also pronouncing it Stall Kings for some reason. Also one called I think Pacific Blue? About bicycle cops in Southern California? Cycling is awesome, but not for chase scenes. It was a riot.

  15. meat_lord says:

    I'm bad at TV. It's a weirdly big cognitive effort for me to select and start watching anything, and I don't have much of an attention span for it, so I usually only watch TV shows if someone else is watching them with me. Therefore, I have no recs.

    I brought Terry Pratchett's Night Watch to work today, so that I'll read that during my lunch instead of restlessly browsing news sites. It may be a bit on the nose for our current political climate, but probably in a good way? I think?

    • jenavira says:

      Night Watch has definitely moved up my to-reread list again. I find I like fiction that's kind of too on-the-nose when I'm worried about politics, because fiction always has characters who stand up and do the right thing and usually win in the end. (I may have cried at a gifset from Captain America yesterday.) And also because I get it stuck in my head, like a song, and I have to go back to it to get it to leave. all the little angels, how they rise up, rise up

      I do recommend having a totally brainless palate-cleanser for afterward, though. My drug of choice this weekend is the Flowers in the Attic TV adaptation, because I am Oscar the Grouch and I love trash.

    • Kazoogrrl says:

      I have a hard time sitting down to watch shows, it's like I prefer to think about watching them, and anticipating watching them, then actually doing the watching. I'm excellent at delayed gratification.

      • dancingcorvid says:

        I absolutely recognize this! and I thought for a while that I was easily bored, because I can sort-of watch if I have knitting to do? but I can't, just, stare at stuff. I'd rather read, if I have that level of brain-power and leisure. But I can't knit and read, and sometimes I just really really need to knit, so tv or movies go along with that.

    • CleverManka says:

      It's a weirdly big cognitive effort for me to select and start watching anything, and I don't have much of an attention span for it

      I understand that completely. It's really only been the past couple years that I've been able to easily and regularly sit and watch stuff. I kind of wonder if that will change if I ever regain my physical stamina.

      Happy reading!

    • meat_lord says:

      Thoughts on my Night Watch reread:

      Boy howdy, the last time I read this book was before…. all the notorious, egregious cases of racist police brutality we've had in the past few years. I am actually having quite a hard time with Sam Vimes being a cop, because I no longer feel good about even fictional cops. And that's kind of a strange feeling, because Vimes is (was?) one of my fictional darlings. It's kinda sad to read about Vimes trying to clean up the mean streets of Ankh-Morpork and think, you're probably one of the bad ones too and you just don't know it, even though that is explicitly and canonically Not Who He Is.

      I don't know, these days I'm way more into Granny Weatherwax and Tiffany Aching. Having to restrain one's own urges toward violence at all times and channel them into healthy outlets, as Vimes does, just isn't relevant to my life now that I'm not a hormonal, angry teen, as fun as it may be to read about. Doing what needs to be done because it's your responsibility, like Pratchett's witches do, is what I am doing now, or trying to do. And I think about "headology" literally all the time.

      • jenavira says:

        I always wanted to be Granny Weatherwax when I grew up. I'm starting to feel like it's more and more likely.

      • flitworth says:

        Perhaps think of Sam Vimes not as a cop but rather the cop. He is so much of what we want from our police force irl. He understands the fundamental difference between the police and the military, he understands his own limitations, he (begrudgingly in some cases) respects other cultures/beings, he empathizes, he values justice in a universal sense, he is rewarded for his efforts, he recognizes the role of circumstance in the lives of those he commands and those he polices…..

        It's unhealthy to allow what is going on in the world to turn us against the police for being police because they already think of themselves as victims and there's no advantage to reinforcing that narrative.

        Granny is awesome.

    • ru_ri says:

      I need to reread me some Pratchett. Somehow he can always make me feel better. I think Thief of Time is my go-to, but the Tiffany Aching books are a close second. Thank you for the reminder!

  16. silverandsnow says:

    Wynonna Earp! The great-granddaughter of Wyatt Earp is a badass demon-killer but also beautifully flawed. The entire cast of characters and their stories are so well-written and acted that you overlook the low-budget effects. Aired on SyFy last year (or CHCH for Canadians who don't get SyFy, like me) and is currently filming season 2. I started watching it because I was looking for basic mindless entertainment, but the characters blew me away and it quickly became a favourite.

  17. dancingcorvid says:

    so this here is to add to a thread held over from Wednesday about how the apocalypse is here and it being reported by Teen Vogue, Buzzfeed and, apparently, rogue scientists from the National Parks Service

    I was talking with my director about the high school musical and I apologized for dropping something and said it had been a hard fall and we both burst into tears, so yeah, that is a thing. We both have two daughters – hers are 9 and 4, mine are 18 and 22, and we are each looking at the other's daughters with affection and awe.

    I've been sick all week and I am so sick of it. I need some magic potion like Phlegm-B-Gon and I would drink it like anything.

    Weird TV – there was an early show of Sorkin's called Sports Night that I liked a lot, and then the actresses showed up in other places and made me happy. I am a solid fan of Due South, and somehow The Adventures of Briscoe County Jr. falls into that same mental bucket. It was written and produced by parts of the same team that went on to do Firefly (Tru Fax – Fillion carries Briscoe's gun in Firefly). Babylon 5 was fucking amazing when it came out and most of it holds up pretty well. Although I can totally do without the 5th season of droopy telepaths. There was a strange little thing called Grace Under Fire, which was apparently too close to autobiographical and the lead kind of exploded under pressure, but it had moments. I got a lot of pleasure out of the 1/2 season of Finder, even though it was deeply problematical, and ended on a mid-season cliffhanger which deeply sucked. Life on Mars was made first in by BBC, and was spooky and interesting but I missed ALL the social stuff. It was remade for, like, a season and a half? in the US, and it had more resonance for me because I could remember some of that stuff and I caught so much more of the social and time commentary, but they totally pancaked the landing.

    I feel like I am writing you guys weekly letters and I should finish up with

    I love you all –


    • jenavira says:

      I mean, you have to get some kind of entertainment out of the way things are, and if that means reveling in the fact that the Resistance is being led by the national park service, Teen Vogue, and the Merriam-Webster Dictionary – well. 😀

      Briscoe County Jr! I'd forgotten all about that show, but I love it to pieces.

      And I can solidly recommend Season 3 of Babylon 5 for therapeutic too-relevant sci-fi. I can only hope that there's a Sheridan somewhere out there who's in a position of enough power to do that much good.

    • meat_lord says:

      Oh man, I forgot about Life on Mars. I was in a radically different life place when I watched it (that is, watched about the first half–never made it through the series). I do not think I would be able to tolerate Gene Hunt these days. I loved LoM, even though all the contact embarrassment I felt for Sam Tyler made it an incredibly hard watch.

    • CleverManka says:

      Thank you for your weekly letters! And I am following your blog but for some reason it won't take my comments. I love your art, though, and have been so much appreciating your triangle project!

      ETA: YAY for fellow due South fans! It always makes me so happy to find someone else who loves it.

    • RoseCamelia says:

      You know this. But I gotta say it: We love you too!

    • vladazhael says:

      The Adventures of Briscoe County Jr!
      Grace Under Fire!
      Life on Mars!

      YES!!! All of these!

    • ru_ri says:

      We so, so appreciate your weekly letters!
      Your relationship with your director sounds really nice. I can't imagine being able to cry together about The Everything or having a Mutual Daughter Admiration Society with any boss I've ever had. That's very cool.
      Sorry you are sick, please feel better soon!
      — Love from all of us, too

    • Onymous says:

      On a Briscoe County note: Jack of all Trades, also starring Bruce Cambell

  18. LaxMom says:

    Hyperdrive for sure. I'm sure I'll think of more but my tv watching has slacked off with grad school, obvs.

    So two good things happened this week: I went over the end of year kid expenses and was able to respond to the ex's letter (which said I owed him $$$$$$$) with detailed receipts and sections of our divorce agreement that, lo and behold, meant that not only did I not owe HIM anything, he owes me. He is gonna be pissed pissed pissed this weekend. Job well done, me.
    And he fucking deserves it, but the other good thing, first:
    Teenboy is VOLUNTARILY reading a book (Babbit, of all things). AND he pretty much accosted me when I got home yesterday because he's totally excited about writing a research paper, and wanted to know how to do research, and to talk about his subject, and….well, mind blown, that's for sure. This is my all-math all-th-time boy who thinks Calc 2 is fun. English is not his favorite.

    So the ex thing: Well, this is the bad news of the week. No more alimony. Poof. There goes…a third of my income. I knew it was coming but the only thing I could possibly to do to fix it is quit school and get full time work, which isn't happening. My parents know, my landlords "know" and may cut me a small break on the rent, but I'm still losing basically the entire rent check out of my income every month. My parents have just said, "we will figure that out when it happens". I'm working on a budget and hyperventilating in small doses, since nothing will really make money come out ok, but it is what it is. I've been waiting for 6 years, the day is here, time to get through it. I hate being a grown up. So, anyway, being able to throw something spitefully back in ex's face was satisfying.

    Tomorrow I have Tai Chi fan class.

    One more bitch: So I went to the podiatrist, he was an ass. It took me 24 hours to realize that not only was he unhelpful and not any good, but he was blowing me off as "some mom". FFS I am SO sick of being condescended to by fucking medical professionals. He basically told me I hadn't broken either of the two toes (and fuck that xray, I know at least the one was broken, I've done this before). And he gave me a dirty look for having a callous on my foot (for the record, I have baby feet. If I didn't have bare minimum callouses they would be bleeding from blisters always. But these are from karate, and hard earned!). He tried to tell me that I had a bunion. Um, I'm not stupid, I know that bunions don't suddenly appear one second after you drop something on your foot. I asked him "so I messed up a tendon or ligament or something?" and he said, "Or something". Fuck him. He shows me an xray where my metatarsal isn't even lining up correctly and says "wait and see if it gets better". My fucking foot is a full bone width off and I'm just supposed to wait and see?I asked hime if there was a special way to wrap it or tape it…and he came back with a compression sock. Fuck this guy just phoning it in. Meanwhile they are doing construction at school and I have to walk down, up, and down again on a steep grass hill because they keep closing the sidewalk. And it's winter. It will take another 2 weeks to see the orthopedist and i'm pissed. Another two weeks at least of no yoga.

    Anyway, it's been 8 days since I dropped, smashed, or otherwise hurt myself…My friend's boyfriend says I need one of those "Safety First: No accidents since…." signs!!

    • jenavira says:

      Okay, that podiatrist is a jackass, and he needs to fuck off. But I'm so glad you had some good things this week – sometimes you need a little vindictiveness.

    • CleverManka says:

      Congrats on eight days and Teenboy's newfound interest in literature!

      That's a massive bummer about the worthless podiatrist and the stupid construction closing the sidewalk. How is that even legal? Hello, accessibility laws?

    • dancingcorvid says:

      I am delighted to hear you have money coming from your ex, and the Teenboy showing interest in writing sounds as revolutionary as either of my kids doing so – hooray on that score.

      Also I am down with making you a sign that says "no injuries since…" if it will reinforce good luck on your behalf. Murphy's Law tends to intervene when I say something like that, so it wouldn't work for me, but it could for you!

      may all the finances work out perfectly and fuss free. When ever I think about how tight money was when we were in grad school I feel ill. Mr. Crow fell off the end of RAs and TAs and I was his granting agency for almost two years. It was complicated by the number of stories from women who had put their husbands through school and been replaced on graduation, so I was kind of a mess when he finally finished. But then his dad cornered me and thanked me for my support, and many other things conspired to convince me we were gonna be ok.

      Also hte podiatrist is a complete jackass and you could practice karate kicking him where it counts.

      • LaxMom says:

        I am glad Mr. Corvid appreciated a good thing when he saw it!
        The alimony thing was worse before when I realized I should have gone straight through and this wouldn't be a problem, but it's not my fault the job (that I though I was doing the responsible thing taking) was a bait and switch.
        I never realized husbands left after grad school–everybody here is younger and just getting married or pregnant while finishing up. I'm the same age as most of the professors (or older, ugh).
        I doubt the money coming from the ex will show up, but not paying him thousands is good enough.

    • sbcardinal says:

      Every podiatrist I have ever seen has been as bad or worse than what you had. My response? Youtube videos and kinesio tape. I cannot tell you how my quality of life has improved! You can get the tape on Amazon, or buy the generics at your local drugstore. It takes a bit of practice to get the tension just right, and to get the tape adhered so that it will last for days… but then it's golden. You may have to troll through a few videos to find one that lines up with your foot pain, but I'd be surprised if there's not one out there. Good luck!

    • sherwood21 says:

      >:( Boo to that podiatrist. And I'm sorry the finances are stressing you out, but congrats on being able to shut down the ex over 'money owed' nonsense!

  19. Heathered says:

    I am SO GLAD to be home from two little fractional weeks at the law library. I could read but not comment, which was just painful. So hi! Also, I'm probably done law librarianing bc it's a dead end with no hours and low pay, but I am totally curious about getting a paralegal certificate now. Had anyone here done that work? I would love to know anything at all about it & will be researching next week.

    • ru_ri says:

      Congratulations on making through the gig!

      A number of years ago I did paralegal work for a friend who was an expert witness in environmental cleanup trials. It involved organizing a lot of documents, searching for specific pieces of evidence, and making charts in Excel–but I think what the work involves varies a lot depending on who you work for, and I didn't have a certificate or anything. My favorite part of it was collecting weird names (you run across a lot of weird names in legal briefs). My all-time favorite was "Norman C. Nosenchuck."
      That is the sum total of my knowledge about paralegal work. It seems like it would be good job security (lawyering will never go out of style) as long as you don't end up working for a nightmare firm. Let us know how the research goes!

      • Heathered says:

        Thank you for this! I ended up in three separate discussions about paralegaling, and I'm really encouraged by the people who responded & what they had to say about it. Maybe instead of leaping into grad school I can look for a lawyer here to mentor me, or an internship or something. And re: Mitch McConnell, I CAN'T WAIT! Boil that evil turtle into soup.

  20. Fancy_Pants says:

    Manka, if you like low budget animated Canadian TV from about 25 years ago, may I recommend Captain Star? It's about a retired space captain and his crew and it's very gentle and delightful. All the episodes are on YouTube. My partner and I are rewatching it right now.

  21. Onymous says:

    Currently in a slowmotion knife fight with Excel over some graphs.

    Prof has very pedantic instructions for these graphs and Excel doesn't seem to think 40000 data points is a reasonable number of points. It seems to be forgetting the format of one line or another every time I update another.

    … and the computer has frozen while trying to save.

  22. dancingcorvid says:

    Manka – about half your GIFs seem to be borked, and I can't tell if it is me, or having too many layers of adblocking and anti-tracking software running or somehting on your end.

    Also I am sorry you cannot comment on my blog, I shall go inspect it for hangups.

    • CleverManka says:

      The GIFs are working now, so maybe it was an LJ thing. I know I need to find a different place to host those but UGH I do not have the energy for THAT right now.

      The comments thing–I think it's a WordPress issue, and maybe not just your blog. I type in my information and it even fills in my gravatar, but then when I click to submit the comment it takes me to a different screen that says my login in wrong.

  23. LaxMom says:

    So. I've only met one other person doing what I do exactly and was so excited that she works in a nearby university and we were trying to pull strings to get her on my committee. Guess what country she's from? Guess where she researches? yes, one of the 7.
    I'm in shock. I'm just in shock.

  24. Räven says:

    This weekend pushed most of even my most apolitical friends toward outrage and action – but it also outed one of my cousins as a refugee NIMBY, and at least one of my Habitica party members is disappointed in the negativity they're seeing in the US, and now I worry there are more stealth trumpfriends hiding under rocks.

    • ru_ri says:

      Being disappointed in those we are fond of sucks, and not being sure of those we are fond of also sucks. I am sorry those things are in your orbit.

      I am glad to hear that you know apolitical people who are taking action, though!

      • Räven says:

        Yes! I live in a city of immigrants and the ban was a tipping point for a lot of people. Even my friend who afaik has never so much as signed a petition in his life was like "f*ck it, I'm going to the airport".

    • Onymous says:

      It is sort depressing/relieving that the muslim ban seems to be the final straw for so many people who have been finger-in-ears-ing politics for the last year.

      Like "thank christ you've finally noticed" but at the same time, "it took you this long to notice?"

      • Räven says:

        Yeah. This.
        In the short run, I'm relieved, because some friendships have chilled this winter as people were just not that…. interested? Like, every week they're like, "oh, that isn't really my cause. That isn't the most important thing to me." But *every* cause was in that category.
        And don't get me wrong. There are things I don't show up for. There are even things I really care deeply about and send money for but still don't show up to the rally. But a couple of my friends, I have found it hard to go to dinner and talk about, idk, movies and art.
        So, we are talking about a salvage operation. I'm grateful but with a very big slice of where the hell were you last week/month/year.

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