extrapenguin: Photo of horse's head (Default)
7. A song to drive to
Breaking Benjamin - Blow Me Away
lyrics
It's reasonably active without being aggressive, so alertness-inducing, and the rhythm's nice. And, after an inevitable post-con crash in sentiment, I require something that tells me that yes, I'll be the one who saves us all.
extrapenguin: Photo of horse's head (Default)
I slept in an hour, then visited the art show and did a final round of stuff-buying.

Read more... )

Then there were the closing ceremonies, which were nice, and then I went home and crashed. I think I'll skip San Jose 2018, but Dublin 2019 is a place I plan to go to.
extrapenguin: Photo of horse's head (Default)
Saturday, I went to the con on less than enough sleep (since I was getting rather rank on Friday and had to shower => half an hour + away from my sleeping time). Here are my notes.

Read more... )
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They started moving stuff into bigger rooms on Friday. Here are my notes:

Read more... )
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The early bird gets the worm, so I identified all the panels I Really Wanted to go to, then went to queue at least 40 minutes before they started. I mostly went to the science things, since I was at least partially there to get some writing mojo and inspiration, and also if I've already encountered an idea, re-encountering it later makes learning it then easier. Here are my notes on last Thursday beneath the cut. (Updated 18.8.)

Oh, and Worldcon has put up videos of some of the panels, plus the opening ceremonies.

Read more... )
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I arrived, registration was painless enough, and then I went to do panels. They had seriously underestimated the amount of people attending on Wednesday, so everything was packed, and I didn't fit into many panels. Have my mostly unedited notes from last week.

Read more... )
extrapenguin: Photo of horse's head (Default)
6. A song that makes you want to dance
Walk the Moon - Shut Up and Dance With Me (link to a video with a movie dance compilation)
lyrics
This is also a song that cheers me up immensely. It has even managed to acquire YouTube comments (typically the dreg pits of lost faith in humanity) such as "This is one of the most beautifully crafted music videos I've seen on this site. Every scene matched the beat, rhythm, tone, and mood of the song. This is what makes a great music video."
In slightly related news, I have connected with a local queer in a maybe perhaps romantic way. I'm certainly grinning like an idiot. Let's see what happens.

I also survived Worldcon! I'll be putting up my panel etc notes for each day a week late – ie, I'll start with Wednesday's on next Wednesday, and so on and so forth. I managed to read two and a half books queueing up for stuff: Jussi Katajala's Nollameridiaani ja muita tarinoita (a compilation of shorts, from refreshingly Finnish to refreshingly un-American to utterly intriguing, to my knowledge untranslated but should be worth a check), Emmi Itäranta's Teemestarin kirja (aka Memory of Water; pretty much at the litfic end of what I like reading, but very immersive in worldbuilding and I loved all of the water metaphors), and half of Alastair Reynolds' Pushing Ice (so far, typically Reynoldsianly dark and gloomy like gothic metal, but with an intriguing premise).
Other purchases include O.E. Lönnberg's Langanpäitä (a drabble collection, signed by the author who was also the sales clerk), Shimo Suntila's Tähtiviima (a collection of shorts, set in space probably), Alastair Reynolds' Revenger and Century Rain, Stephen Baxter's Xeelee: An Omnibus (seemingly an omnibus of his Xeelee series), three T-shirts (both the Worldcon 75 ones and the Dublin 2019 one), two necklaces for my LARP-a-woman needs, and a space-related oil painting triptych (expensive but very much worth). Freebies include the souvenir book and Giants at the End of the World: A Showcase of Finnish Weird, ed. Johanna Sinisalo & Toni Jerrman.

Artists whose work I liked include: Hannele Parviala (twitter, example art), Lisa Konrad (official site), John Granacki (official site), Sergey Shikin (interview & example arts), Vitaly Yekleris (I think this is his pinterest and here are some book covers by him, but I can't really be sure), Minna Louhelainen (official site), and Eeva Turkka (twitter, an art).
extrapenguin: Photo of horse's head (Default)
5. A song that needs to be played LOUD
Amaranthe - Razorblade
lyrics
This is the most positive and encouraging song I know. I like to put it on when I'm feeling discouraged – it tends to fix the world. <3

Tomorrow, I go to Worldcon. Other stuff: the egg donation place called me back and I have a mandatory doctor's appointment related to that in a few weeks. Additionally, one of the people I messaged on an internet dating site messaged me back, and we're meeting next Monday. Let's see what happens. <3
extrapenguin: Photo of horse's head (Default)
With regards to things that must be done sometime but not now, I am a human disaster zone. At least I have lots of friends I can ask favors from, and that is the story of how I am actually going to be able to do Worldcon in a proper fashion rather than commute back and forth from my current location. (Technically doable, but deeply unpleasant.)

I am practicing some singing techniques to help with vocal stamina whilst instructing the newbies at work. Also trying to figure out where my "relaxed vocal vibration" point is – turns out it's quite low! Attempting to reconnect with it and rebuild my voice around it. (My Finnish is closer; my English is inexplicably a few semitones higher.)

Coronation Ceremony's sign-ups are done (my least favorite part of running any exchanges: waiting for the countdowns to finish so I can move to the next stage), and everyone was matchable! I even successfully massaged some loose ends into the loop! Now, I look at my assignment and try to recover my writing urge. It's mostly a question of attitude + letting the proto-ideas percolate. As an aside, I always let AO3's random come up with an assignment for me when I'm modding – it makes for a way more interesting experience!

But tomorrow, I'm off to a friend's – so I need to pack for the weekend. It'll be the most north I've been by 33.5' N – about 60-odd km, if I'm doing the math right. Well north of 60, in any case. I must pack.

(One day I'll visit the polar night. One day, I promise myself.)

(Visiting south of 60°N is all well and good, but even my current 61-and-a-bit is a bit surprisingly southern for a place to live. (What can I say? I like my winters long and dark.) If only there were any potential jobs in my field near, idk, Iisalmi. That seems to be close enough to The South that it's possible to go there if necessary (albeit not as a day trip), and a small enough place to be chill. OTOH, my parents still own my childhood home #1 near here. It's in a valley. Maybe that'd be enough. Maybe I just have to find a job in my field in ... Canada?)
extrapenguin: Photo of horse's head (Default)
4. A song that reminds you of someone you'd rather forget about
Indica - Sanoja "Words"
It's in Finnish, but the video has a translation in it, and I've added a translation onto LyricsTranslate here. Indica's stuff is very appealing in a good-with-language way, which doesn't translate, but the metaphors should. It's a very minimal, speak-around-a-thing sort of songwriting, but the picture painted is remarkably accurate.

And since that song is more "reminds me of myself back then" than outright "reminds me of a fuckass ex", have a bonus song:
Delain - Suckerpunch
(lyrics)
I do not fit in girlfriend-shaped boxes. I refuse to try.
Leave me to my solitude / Where I'm self-defined
extrapenguin: Photo of horse's head (Default)
Accommodations: still searching for an acquaintance whose couch to crash on. (Don't worry overmuch, I have like 5 billion of them, and if all else fails, I have a cousin who lives there.)

Schedule: ahahahaha... KonOpas doesn't seem to work, sigh. I can select stuffs, but it doesn't sync with Firefox. *grumbles* I suppose I'll just have to export it to my google calendar. (And by "export it", I mean "export everything even vaguely interesting", because I want to have options re: panels, and who needs food breaks ahahaha lolsob.)

I think I'll buy a notebook and write down a schedule and take notes from the interesting panels. I'm going to Fantasies of Free Movement at 12 on Wednesday and have nothing at 13, so if anyone wants to meet and grab a late lunch, that's one possibility.

(The con guide is here. It's 100% OK to inquire as to whether I'm going to a particular panel. I've seen Mark Halmagiu's "To Boldly No: Realism in Space Sci-Fi" last year, and can heartily recommend it to all interested parties.)

EDIT: Okay I figured out how to get sustainable links. Still can't get the import into Google Calendars to work, but the list of things I'm preliminarily interested in is here. Mostly, stuff that tickles my fancy. See you at at least some of them?
extrapenguin: Photo of horse's head (Default)
3. A song that reminds you of summer
Amaranthe - Automatic

This one was actually quite hard, as I loathe summer with the passion of a thousand fiery suns (it's too bright! and hot!) but Automatic is the sort of upbeat/energetic I associate with the good bits of summer, like sunshine in early May when it's not yet too hot to exist.
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Hi, I'm [archiveofourown.org profile] ExtraPenguin. Here's my Coronation Ceremony letter! Likes, DNWs, and prompts beneath the cut.

Read more... )
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Shadow work: the reason why you're so exhausted. Essentially, in addition to whatever work one actually does, one is expected to be a cashier, gas station attendant, etc. in this era of tossing customer service responsibilities on the customer.

Stuff that's happened since last update: I have come out to my parents via e-mail. They were ... well, imagine a pair of clueless cishets trying to be supportive.

gender = confusing )

I finished my listen of Battle Beast's discography. Bringer of Pain has a new songwriting team, but the end result is similar (upbeat-ish power metal) and also good. I liked Straight to the Heart, King for a Day, Familiar Hell, and Dancing with the Beast. I have a slightly sore throat, and singing along to all of these probably hasn't helped. :P

Do people enjoy me reccing music to them? Who cares, I've got a Music Monday Meme tag, and everything there is a rec! Also collecting stuffs for next year's Jukebox, bit by bit.

Also, the original torus Earth.
extrapenguin: Photo of horse's head (Default)
2. A song with a number in the title
Epica - The Second Stone
Currently, this song (lyrics) is giving me loads of trans feelings. For all my life, I've tried to act the girl/woman, and tried to drag the gender role with me into the (rather masculine) place where I exist. However, I can no longer bear the myriad small reminders that I do not belong. I can't wrap femininity and womanhood around my shoulders as a protective mantle of rising to the challenge and destroying from my path those who doubt my competence and ability. When I've been accidentally gendered as a man, my heart has leaped. I like the masculinity presented by etiquette manuals, both in manner and in dress. The template for femininity crushes my soul whenever it rears its ugly head.

I choose not to maintain the sweet fiction of I'm-just-an-average-girl. There is a me-shaped strand of masculinity almost in my grasp.
extrapenguin: Photo of horse's head (Default)
1. A song with a color in the title
Schwarze Sonne, E Nomine.
Translation of lyrics into English.
I've no idea what it's "supposed" to be about, but trying to come up with relationships that fit it is an interesting exercise! The best I can come up with is "kid was conceived to bring down sperm donor daddy, is messed-up due to being raised as a weapon", which is certainly an idea that someone somewhere should write.

complete list )
extrapenguin: Photo of horse's head (Default)
Things I should do: Read more of the Hugos stuff. At least the novellas, gdi. Install Tinder and try to find a date.

Things I have done:

Gone through Seta's site, reading all the stuff. A lot of the Finnish-language terminology is either cringeworthy or actually in English, but there is something to be said for "you exist, you're allowed to exist" being said in Finnish. There's a place for you here. I should probably go attend a meeting or something/get sort of involved with the community, but I am a socially anxious misanthrope. I need backup.

Relatedly, this Tumblr convo on bisexuality and "passing privilege", and how it results in life sucking for bi people even more.

Also, prosthetics as augmentation, rather than replacement.

I went through Battle Beast's third album, Unholy Savior, and in the realm of upbeat power metal, I rec I Want the World … and Everything in It, Far Far Away, and Push it to the Limit.
On a semi-related note, I tend to interpret songs as being all F/F, even if there's a mention of a dude. I Want the World? Totally a thing a woman'd belt to her girlfriend! Covered by Roses? The most femslashy anthem of ever! No, I have no idea where these associations came from. Perhaps just being bored by het + female singer? Ah well.

I have yet to wash my hair since Wednesday (I'll do that this evening) but it seems that the color's already fading slightly just from wear. On the one hand, I knew that with my slippery-smooth, untreated hair, the number of washes I'd get would be 5 at most, rather than the advertised 5 to 10. On the other, I'm a bit sad, since I liked the color. On the gripping hand, I get to do more hair dye experiments soon?
extrapenguin: (honor)
I've taken to reading self-improvement stuff lately. The Centre for Clinical Interventions has some self-help information packs/modules. I've been reading through the self-esteem one and finding it insightful in the best way: "Here's some stuff you already sort of knew, except contextualized slightly differently. Also, explanations for why the things you do that help, work, and some additional things that help." In the same vein, The Art of Manliness has a series on resilience that covers a lot of the same stuff, but from a more self-improvement angle. (As a tangent, I prefer the Advice For Men over Advice For Women, since the For Men is more gruff self-improvement, whilst the For Women stuff tends towards the neurotic, and I would rather encourage the gruff I-can-do-this-if-I-try attitude within me than the neurotic this-will-be-hard one.)

One of the things I've learned (via Resiliency, pt III) is that feeling in control – even of a houseplant! – will improve one's life. Now, the hair dye discussion over at the good ol' TGE chatroom had already gotten me in the mood for trying some hair dye, so, a tube of L'Oréal Colorista Washout in Aqua later, my hair has some teal-ish stripes. I am satisfied: I have visibly changed the universe. I have interacted with matter!

As for the actual dyeing procedure, my hair is waist-length and thick. Getting all of it would've required at least 4 tubes of the dye – rather pricey for 5 to 10 washes (tubes are 7.45€ apiece here). I used to have light, golden brown hair, but the last hurrahs of puberty and spending less time in the sun have darkened it to what I would call a flat brown. (Too dark to be liver pâté/maantie, but most of y'all would still probably think I'm a blond.) As a result, the aqua/turquoise pigment is more teal green-looking, but it's still flattering imo. It's also quite subtle in places, though I chose the 20min setting time (as opposed to 15min) after spending half an hour squeezing out the hair dye cream thing.

In other news, I've also started to exercise more regularly. Just yesterday, I intended to run a small path beside a lake, then accidentally ran around the whole lake instead, oops. The scenery was very rewarding, though! Gender remains confusing, but apparently there's a local helpline. I'll call there the next time I'm having a bad evening. My job remains satisfying when there's actual things to do – one of the things the media doesn't tell you about is that an experimental scientist's job is mostly waiting for reactions to occur/things to pump/equipment to cool/measurements to finish/etc. I've also been reading Judith Tarr's SFF Equines series of posts on Tor. It's quite interesting, and reminds me of my horse days.

Also, this says Love your crooked neighbor with your crooked heart. W.H. Auden.
extrapenguin: The famous Earthrise photograph, cropped (moon)
This week, one of my roomie's friends stayed over. She's only just back from a period of student exchange abroad, and her rent contract begins today. (My roomie has been living out of town for summer, so as to be nearer to her summer job. Just me and Friend.)

Apparently, Roomie and Friend are childhood friends who still keep in touch and call each other semiregularly. Perhaps I moved too often to nourish and keep such friendships, but – in a way I like that I could shed my skin and form anew. I was certainly a bit of an oblivious idiot socially back when I was young.

My current batch of friends, I like enough to be friends with. Stay friends after graduation, perhaps – but with the eventual fragmentation of everyone to their more permanent living situations and then kids, I doubt I'll get to hang on to all of them. Like my previous friendships, these too shall whither. Like my previous friendships, these too have given and shall give me fond memories. Have we no love for transience? The cherry blossoms bloom for a week, and then are gone. No-one denies their beauty and the worth of seeing them.

Don't get me wrong, I do currently want to find a locus of stability and do the whole married-forever thing, but even things only experienced once are still worth experiencing.

I like Friend. As I type this, she slips out of my life forever. I am sad, yes, but I liked talking to her. I'll slot the experiences of enjoying her company with the rest of the people lost from me in time's mists.
extrapenguin: Photo of horse's head (Default)
It's 2004, so probably out of date, but Andrew H. Knoll is good at writing.

Life on a Young Planet is nonfiction about Precambrian life on Earth! It had lots of interesting stuffs about bacteria and other micro-organisms, as well as weird Ediacaran life. The prose was also nice, and it clearly explained a lot of new stuff, like life preferring to use carbon-12, and thus the carbon-12/carbon-13 ratio being a useful measure of life's presence. It also explained shortly some blind alleys of thought, as well as why scientists went there.

All in all, a very intriguing "What" book on an interesting subject, with brief forays into and mentions of "Who", "How", and "Why", to give better texture. It's also given me a few ideas to toy with in origfic.

Additionally, [tumblr.com profile] shiftingpath gave what was maybe the best explanation of the appeal of exploration narratives ever in TGE chat. (Repeated small stories of tension and release in small adventures.) I am toying with it in the aforementioned origfic.

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