Daily Happiness

Jul. 1st, 2016 12:24 am
torachan: a cartoon owl with the text "everyone is fond of owls" (everyone is fond of owls)
[personal profile] torachan
1. I was ten minutes late for my doctor's appointment this morning due to traffic, so I was afraid I would end up having to wait a much longer time if she went ahead and took another patient ahead of me, but maybe there wasn't anyone, because I still got to see her right away.

2. I was expecting to go in to work tonight for two to three hours but it only ended up being an hour and a half.

3. In between those two, I had a nice relaxing day off. Got some translating done and some cleaning and some internetting.

4. I also cuddled on the bed with this sweet sleepy kitty!

Add Discord to the user name tag

Jun. 30th, 2016 11:08 am
mylastchance: (Default)
[personal profile] mylastchance posting in [site community profile] dw_suggestions

Add Discord to the user name tag


A lot of people are using discord to communicate lately online. i was hoping you could make the tag you use to link to your offsite profiles that will work with discord's website!

A lot of people are using discord to communicate lately online. i was hoping you could make the tag you use to link to your offsite profiles that will work with discord's website!

Poll #17547 Add Discord to the user name tag
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 4

This suggestion:

View Answers

Should be implemented as-is.
0 (0.0%)

Should be implemented with changes. (please comment)
1 (25.0%)

Shouldn't be implemented.
0 (0.0%)

(I have no opinion)
3 (75.0%)

(Other: please comment)
0 (0.0%)

thistleingrey: (Default)
[personal profile] thistleingrey
". . . who will accept the mayor's wife shaking her ass on the stage?" asks the best friend (Ra Mi Ran) in Dancing Queen (film, 2012), a story about being fortyish and having a chance to recapture a dream lost to upheaval and marriage. (Not subtle, this one: a scene closes upon the younger selves of the two leads standing with their hands up before a tank.) The two leads were frenemies in elementary school, she with a respectably land-owning family and he the Busan-inflected new boy in their rented room; as college students, there was that tank; then he became a softy civil lawyer who made no money while she supported the household by teaching aerobics to housewives, after losing the chance to audition as a singer. As the title indicates, the chance comes around again---only he is now, by an accident of fate, a candidate for mayor of Seoul, and she's slated to perform with a group of "older" women (all with 1980s birthdates, heh/sigh) for their debut. Whose dream---if any---will be realized?

Read more... )
[syndicated profile] snopes_feed
Google's new licensing deal allows users searching for song lyrics to bypass unlicensed sites and ensure musicians and publishers are properly compensated.

Private probably

Jul. 1st, 2016 05:07 am
[syndicated profile] languagelog_feed

Posted by Victor Mair

The following two images come from Graham and Kathleen's video diary of a trip to the Daitoku-ji temple complex in Kyoto.

The two images occur at 8:21 and 8:29 in the video.

Kutsu no machigai ni go-chuui kudasai!!
"Be careful not to take the wrong shoes"

Kasa wa kasatate ni irete kudasai.
*Innai shiyoo kinshi
"Please put [your] umbrella in the umbrella stand
Use of umbrellas is prohibited in the temple grounds."

Kankeisha igai
Tachiiri kinshi
"Unauthorized persons
Keep out"

It's pretty obvious what went wrong with "mistake of shoes," but what category of error is "private probably" — a mistranslation, a misspelling, or something else?

[h.t. Mara Katz; thanks to Nathan Hopson and Hiroko Sherry]

[syndicated profile] languagelog_feed

Posted by Victor Mair

Hangzhou is handing out “crash course” manuals for residents to chat with international visitors at the G20 Summit in September, complete with Chinese character transcriptions of such beginner’s phrases as “Hangzhou, a paradise on Earth” and “orioles singing in the willows”:


To give an idea of how this "spelling with Chinese characters" works, here are the first and fifth entries of Part 1:

Welcome to Hangzhou.
huānyíng nín lái hángzhōu

(lit. "crooked-look-wood-earth-Hangzhou")

West Lake, the best attraction in Hangzhou.
Hángzhōu zuìměi zài Xīhú

Wàisītè léikè, báisìtè àiqù'àikěshùnēn yīn Hángzhōu
外斯特 雷克,白四特 爱去爱可顺恩 因 杭州
(lit., "outside-this-special thunder-overcome, white-four-special love-go-love-can-along-grace because Hangzhou")

In another section of the booklet, they have four character expressions for the "Ten Scenes of West Lake", such as this one:

Evening Bell Ringing at the Nanping Hill
Nánpíng wǎnzhōng

yīfùní bǎièr ruìyīn àitè zhè Nánpíng Hé'ér
一付呢 百二 睿因 艾特 这 南屏 何而
(lit., "one-pay-twitter hundred-two farsighted-because mugwort-special this Nanping what-and")

About the only positive thing I have to say for this type of transcription is that they sometimes — but by no means always — insert word spaces.

Some drawbacks:

  1. Much of it does not sound like English and will not elicit the intended words.  I doubt that one in ten million visitors to Hangzhou will realize that àiqù'àikěshùnēn 爱去爱可顺恩 stands for "attraction".  Will anyone realize that ruìyīn 睿因 stands for "ringing"?  That shìruì 是瑞 (lit., "is Swiss / propitious") is meant to represent "three"?
  2. Cognitive dissonance; semantic interference (Russian interferentsiya интерференция).
  3. They could have used a lot more mouth radicals to signal that the syllable in question is purely transcriptional (represents sound only).  For example, why use ài 艾 ("mugwort") when āi 哎 is available?
  4. Sometimes they simply drop words, e.g., "the" in sentence 2, but then, as in the last example cited, they turn around and use zhè 这 ("this") to represent "the".  If they wish to develop a system of transcription based solely on Chinese characters, they should be consistent.
  5. Occasionally they are attentive to final consonants (e.g., pǎode 跑的 [lit., "run-of"] for "pond" and gērú'àide 哥如爱的 [lit., "brother-like-love-of" for "grand" — but what happened to the nasal in both of these words?), though usually they're dropping consonants all over the place.
  6. Even very simple, common, essential words like "lake" (léikè 雷克 [lit., "thunder-overcome"], lèikě 类可 [lit., "category-can"])  are transcribed differently in close proximity.
  7. Some of the transcriptions are simply bizarre, such as wǒde 我的 ("my") for "world".
  8. I suspect that Wu topolect phonology has led to some unexpected (from a MSM point of view) transcriptions, such as Qiānà 掐那 (lit., "pinch-that") for "China." See "The transcription of the name "China" in Chinese characters" (6/17/12).

I'm just getting started, but that should be enough to document the grounds for my dissatisfaction with this type of "spelling".  It's no wonder that, when I first took a look at this booklet, I immediately exclaimed, "OMG!"

OMG is ubiquitous on the Chinese internet in the following forms (all parenthetical translations except #7 and #8 are literal syllable by syllable renderings):

  1. OMG — probably the most common form
  2. Ǒumǎigā 偶买咖 ("occasionally-buy-cur[ry]")
  3. Ǒumǎigāde 偶买咖的 ("occasionally-buy-cur[ry]-of")
  4. Ǒumǎigá 偶买噶 ("occasionally-buy-syllable used for Tibetan transcriptions")
  5. Ómǎigá 哦买噶 ("oh-buy-syllable used for Tibetan transcriptions") — this form is very commonly encountered; both it and #4 rarely have a de 的 at the end for the final consonant of "God", as in #3
  6. Ómǎigāo 哦買糕 ("oh-buy-cake") — seems to be mainly a Taiwanese version
  7. Ó, wǒ de shàngdì 哦,我的上帝 ("Oh, my God")
  8. Tiān a 天啊 ("Heaven!")

Here are a few previous Language Log posts on this theme of "spelling" English with Chinese characters:

Bottom line:  Modern China has a perfectly workable, official system of romanization called Hànyǔ pīnyīn 汉语拼音 ("Sinitic Spelling"), with which all Chinese under the age of about 55 who have gone to school are familiar, so I don't see why there is any longer a need to go through the contortions demanded by this antiquated, clumsy, unsystematic method of transcribing foreign languages with Chinese characters.

[Thanks to Anne Henochowicz, David Moser, Kaiser Kuo, Matt Smith, and Kellen Parker]

US Politics: Good news for a change

Jun. 30th, 2016 11:50 pm
beatrice_otter: SG-1--Master Bra'tac, staff held high (Bra'tac is Awesome)
[personal profile] beatrice_otter
So remember that Puerto Rico is, because of weird loopholes in US law and terrible management, in crippling debt?  And because of more loopholes, was going to have to pay creditors instead of basic services like hospitals unless Congress did something?

Congress actually did something: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/wp/2016/06/29/senate-poised-to-act-on-puerto-rico-debt-days-before-debt-cliff/

The problem is not fixed; PR still has huge amounts of debt to pay off.  But at least now they can pay for basic services like schools and hospitals before paying off the hedge fund vultures.
rhi: A wooden door surrounded by green vines and plants.  Refuge. (refuge)
[personal profile] rhi
Dr McCoy looking exasperated.  Caption reads, "Ever hear something so stupid it gives you DeForest Kelley face?"

I'm going to point to that picture a lot, I can already tell.

sovay: (Psholtii: in a bad mood)
[personal profile] sovay
It was too hot last night. I slept badly and had a nightmare of the sticky, clinging kind, where an hour after waking it still feels like something that really, unpleasantly happened. I can't blame it on my bedtime reading, because I loved Barbara Hambly's A Free Man of Color (1997) and am cheerfully planning to depress myself with Fever Season (1998) when I get a chance. Today the breeze smells like the sea at the end of summer; it's making me homesick. I think today is catch-up movie day. [edit] It is not catch-up movie day because the first attempted sketch ran away into a rant. [livejournal.com profile] derspatchel asked me if I had ever panned a film for my Patreon and I allowed that usually I write about things I actually like. I will get around to Robert Aldrich's The Flight of the Phoenix (1965) and Stanley Kubrick's The Killing (1956). Sometimes you just have to yell about bad movies on the internet.

Santa Fe Trail (1940) is a bad movie. I am almost tempted to say it's an evil one. How else would you define a retelling of Bleeding Kansas and John Brown's raid on Harpers Ferry where the abolitionists are the blatant villains of the piece? The heroes are J.E.B. Stuart (Errol Flynn) and George Armstrong Custer (Ronald Reagan1), here recent graduates of West Point deployed to Fort Leavenworth as peacekeepers for Kansas; since their mission entails repelling Brown's raids, breaking his supply chains, and disrupting his support of the Underground Railroad, the presence of the U.S. Army in the contested territory not so tacitly equals the upholding of slavery. I don't argue with that as a historical truth. I just object to being bludgeoned toward the opinion that I should endorse it.

To a man—and they are all men; I think the only women with speaking roles in this film are Olivia de Havilland and a mammy stereotype—the abolitionists of Santa Fe Trail are passionately misguided at best, violent opportunists at worst. Raymond Massey plays Brown with considerable force and charisma, but the character remains a dangerous fanatic, a Bible-belting domestic terrorist who believes it's God's work he's doing when he murders decent, ordinary folk who just happen to own slaves; our heroes know better and know too that he must be stopped for the good of the nation he's driving into needless, bloody conflict: "To the Devil with the Union! We've got to fight sometime and it might as well be now!" Certainly there's room in Hollywood for a thoughtful exploration of the effectiveness of Brown's methods versus the righteousness of his cause, but it's not this movie. The fact that he opposes the ownership of other human beings is not only not given the moral weight I would expect of the issue, but actively undermined at almost every turn of the story. Outside of Brown's wild-eyed thundering sermons, most of the script's anti-slavery arguments are voiced by Van Heflin's Carl Rader, a disgraced former cadet with a murderous chip on his shoulder for Stuart who got him expelled from West Point for distributing abolitionist literature. Ideologically, he's absolutely in the right. Personally, he's a sneering cynic who first disparages Stuart's slave-holding background when the other cadet calls him on the incompetent roughness with which he was handling his horse. If the coming apocalypse of the Civil War appears as a religious duty to John Brown, to Rader it's an opportunity for settling scores: "You get this from me, Stuart—and all you other Mason-Dixon plutocrats—the time is coming when the rest of us are going to wipe you and your kind off the face of the earth!" Neither Stuart nor Custer is terribly surprised to find their sometime classmate riding with Brown's raiders in Kansas, playing the turncoat with a casual, capable malice that makes him much more interesting to watch than either of the leads, but later dialogue will reveal that he's doing it for money, not morality: "I signed up because you promised to pay me. Trained this rabble gang of yours into a solid, fast-moving unit of fighters. Taught them how to use these new rifles, how to follow orders and take a town Army fashion. But I haven't received a red cent in three months . . . You hired me as a military expert at a set price and I'm only asking what's rightly due me." Ultimately he will betray Brown as unscrupulously as he did his country and take a bullet for his troubles. Even the tentatively sympathetic statements offered by de Havilland's Kit Holliday as she tends to one of Brown's sons—"His reasons may be right, Jason"—are ferociously repudiated by the disillusioned boy now dying of wounds sustained in a botched attempt to intercept a shipment of Beecher's Bibles. As the action shifts to Brown and his men, a scene-setting caption sums up the script's attitude: "The town of Palmyra, cancer of Kansas and the western end of the underground railroad for slaves." So much for the abolitionists.

By contrast, Flynn's Stuart is a very gentleman of Southern reason, proffering apologias like the equivocating "It isn't our job to decide who's right or wrong about slavery any more than it is John Brown's" and the wholly ahistorical "The people of Virginia have long considered a resolution to abolish slavery . . . All they ask is time." The Northerners and the rabble-rousing activists are importunate, pushing where they should be patient; it is they who endanger the stability of their nation, threatening to fracture an otherwise untroubled whole. If the U.S. government has to send troops to enforce the brutal survival of slavery, it's justified in the name of the national good. The commencement speaker for West Point's Class of 1854 echoes this sentiment in his parting words to the graduating cadets: "We are not yet a wealthy nation, except in spirit, and that unity of spirit is our greatest strength . . . With your unswerving loyalty and the grace of God, our nation shall have no fears for the future, and your lives will have been spent in the noblest of all causes—the defense of the rights of man." This is Jefferson Davis (Erville Anderson), promoting the solidarity of the nation in his capacity as Secretary of War without a hint from the script of his future position as first and only President of the Confederate States of America. When he speaks of "the rights of man," a modern audience may correctly insert an automatic "white" before that last noun. But of course it's only white people we're talking about here. We are a decade and a half ahead of the civil rights movement. Do not get me started on the near-complete absence of black characters from the narrative unless someone is either rescuing or recapturing them. When they do feature as more than silent background bodies, it's only to ventriloquize the worst stereotypes of the happy plantation—the supposedly emancipated black couple who greet the sound of Stuart's voice with an enthusiastic "We's coming, boss!" and lament afterward that "Old John Brown said he was going to give us freedom, but shuckins—if this here Kansas is freedom, then I ain't got no use for it. No, sir!"–"Me, neither! I just want to get back home to Texas and sit till Kingdom Come." Considering some of the jaw-droppingly racist jokes I have seen come out of the '30's and '40's, I suppose this sort of thing is part and parcel of the background radiation of racism at the time, but taken with the rest of Santa Fe Trail's politics it plays even more appallingly. I'm not even sure how to approach the character of the Native woman at Fort Leavenworth who tells the fortunes of Stuart and Custer and their West Point friends only in slant oracular terms of the Civil War.2 By the time the plot had shot Carl Rader, hanged John Brown, and resolved the thoroughly predictable love triangle with Kit Holliday in favor of Stuart—Custer gets the consolation prize of Jefferson Davis' daughter, which thanks to the fact that in real life he was married to Elizabeth Bacon I didn't see coming—I didn't even care anymore.

The movie runs 110 minutes and everything after about minute three is mind-boggling. I am used to Hollywood playing fast and loose with history in order to make a better story, but rarely to Hollywood reversing the course of history entirely. Even Gone with the Wind (1939), generally the poster child for the romanticization of the antebellum South, didn't leave me staring at the screen with the same dissonance as Santa Fe Trail.3 This wasn't some white supremacist fringe production; it was a reasonably budgeted Warner Bros. A-picture directed by Michael Curtiz, who I don't exactly associate with fascist filmmaking. Screenwriter Robert Buckner came from Virginia, but I'd like to think that's not the full explanation. If you were to tell me that the tropes of the U.S. Army Western and the anti-demagoguery rhetoric of America on the brink of World War II converged in a perfect storm of unexamined racism, I'd believe it, but I'd still be sad. I know the United States was hella isolationist in 1940, but Jesus. Whatever the cause, the existence of movies like Santa Fe Trail and the imprint they leave in the popular consciousness are exactly the reasons we need movies like Steve McQueen's 12 Years a Slave (2013) and Nate Parker's The Birth of a Nation (2016) or television like Misha Green and Joe Pokaski's Underground (2016–). I finished watching this movie and shouted at [livejournal.com profile] rushthatspeaks about it until we could have a more or less coherent conversation about Bleeding Kansas and the Missouri Compromise and the Western campaigns of the Civil War. My husband gave me very patient feedback on further shouting over the course of today. This anti-history brought to you by my disapproving backers at Patreon.

1. If his work in Santa Fe Trail is representative of his talents, then I understand the appeal of Reagan as an actor even less than I understand his success as a politician. He's youthful and he's probably good-looking if you like the all-American stereotype and he can say all of his lines in the right order, but so could any number of second-string male leads of his generation. Some of them turned into interesting actors; some of them dropped off the map. I look at Reagan and think that he would have been utterly forgettable if he hadn't gone into politics. I wish he had been forgotten.

2. Look, I understand that outside of a revisionist Western she wasn't going to look into the fire for Reagan's Custer and then laugh her head off, but I would really have appreciated it.

3. I'm not even docking the script points for minor historical inaccuracies like the fact that Stuart and Custer were never classmates at West Point—Stuart graduated in 1854 as depicted, but Custer didn't even matriculate until 1857, where he famously finished dead last in his class with a bad-conduct record that still stands today—or the fact that Cyrus K. Holliday's Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway wasn't chartered until 1859 and the track-laying didn't begin until 1868—which would have made it rather difficult for Stuart and Kit to celebrate their wedding on the maiden run of her father's new train, especially since the historical Jeb Stuart died at the Battle of Yellow Tavern in 1864 and was incidentally married to someone completely different—and, you know, there's not caring about history and then there's lighting it on fire, leaving it on your neighbor's doorstep, ringing the bell, and running away.
batdina: (emma)
[personal profile] batdina
Got in the car this morning, and the odometer said 99,996 when I reached the toll plaza. As I suspected, the next time I looked at the dashboard, on the other side of the Dumbarton Bridge, it read 100,004. In my own defense, it was very windy and my car is also small enough that a gust of wind can lift it up if it hits the car right. I want to think if it had been wheels turning one by one it might have caught my eye? But my old car is now officially all the way old.

Made a minyan this afternoon, and said Kaddish for Aunt Paula. In other news, I get to do it all over again starting tomorrow night: that one's my mom. For two sisters who couldn't decide whether they liked each other or not, that their yarzheits are 36 hours apart strikes me as almost poetic. They would each have hated that they did things so close together. (Remind me to tell the story of the signet ring (which hangs on a chain next to a couple of amulets and then around my neck)). I promise the story is worth it.

In other other news, I'm exhausted. One more day of study and I can go back to sleeping later into the morning. I can't believe I still have Kallah to look forward to.

Is June over yet?

Hippo Birdie Two Ewes

Jun. 30th, 2016 11:14 pm
onyxlynx: Festive pennants in blue & purple with word "Birthday" centered. (Birthday)
[personal profile] onyxlynx
to holyoutlaw! Happy day!

Books and papers

Jul. 1st, 2016 10:02 am
yifu: (sakamoto maaya)
[personal profile] yifu

1. Links:
Superhero-themed bookshelves.
Gorgeous quilled paper designs.

2. It's July! June was nothing short of amazing. I'll just bask in the amazingness before I get back to work.

3. More Legend of the Condor Heroes 2017 character posters.
Six old men )

Two nights ago I said Han Dong would make a great Wang Chongyang in ten years' time, and lo, the next day he's revealed to be 2017's Wang Chongyang. What in the. Whose idea was this. /brb lmao-ing

laughing_tree: (Seaworth)
[personal profile] laughing_tree posting in [community profile] scans_daily

'I've got a whole bunch of thoughts about the Inhumans, but relating to this [series] -- it's the "falling out of the world" aspect. You get that sometimes with mutants, as well -- that thing where you thought you were in a world that nurtured you, but actually you're in one that hates and fears you -- but it feels like a more extreme shift with the Inhumans, in that Inhumans have their own culture, their own rules, their own ethics, their own ways of doing things, much more than Mutants do.' -- Al Ewing

Read more... )
renenet: (vividcon community icon)
[personal profile] renenet posting in [community profile] vividcon
Attention, VividCon party people! Tomorrow, July 1st, is the last day to register for VividCon 2016 at the $110 Attending Member rate! On Saturday the price will increase to $125.

Thank you, and we hope to see you at the con in August!

Company and gardening

Jun. 30th, 2016 10:14 pm
redbird: closeup of white-and-purple violet (violet)
[personal profile] redbird
[personal profile] minoanmiss/[Bad username or unknown identity: browngirl site=] came over today so I could show off our garden and introduce her to the cats. She said very nice things about the garden, both the things we've planted—the cucumber vines are particularly attractive at the moment—and some of the plants that the landlords left behind, especially the roses. The lavender (one of those perennials) is now in bloom, and I gave her some flower heads to use in cooking.

We had lunch at Little Q Hot Pot, with much cheerful conversation about languages, our respective foreign language classes, and books.

(I planted the rosemary this morning, and watered the vegetables, before Browngirl came over, because I wanted to do that while it was cool. The plan for tomorrow is to not garden, because I think I need a bit of a rest, tempted though I am to go buy a flowering cactus. They will probably still have some on Saturday.)

Pride 2016 #1 ~ Edinburgh, July 2nd

Jul. 1st, 2016 02:19 am
kerkevik_2014: (Default)
[personal profile] kerkevik_2014
   Marching for all these and more. 


   Puerto Rico Rainbow Flag

  Trans Pride Flag

Muslim Pink Triangle Rainbow Flag

Orlando Pride Flag

   Goddess be with us all, 

   'tis ok to be Takei

Wynonna Earp

Jun. 30th, 2016 09:13 pm
goss: (Ramayan - Alex Ross)
[personal profile] goss
I decided to try the Pilot episode tonight. Ended up watching 3 episodes back-to-back. Man! I am enjoying the hell out of it (no pun intended :b ). :D

If I didn't have to work tomorrow, I'd probably run through the entire 13 eps in one shot.

Unfortunately, I'm probably not gonna get a chance to continue until Sunday. Looking forward to marathoning the rest then. *bounces*


brownbetty: (Default)

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