juliet: Part of a Pollock artwork in the Tate (art - pollock)
First up: this poem by Taylor Mali is seriously awesome, and this video of him performing it is even better.

Secondly: Pupdate! Sidney has now mostly got the hang of housetraining (i.e. she is now prepared to go in the square, which was FAR TOO SCARY for a while, & she will ask at least once to go out) except when on her own in the house. She has also got the hang of "opening the recycling boxes, dragging all the recycling out, and shredding it into tiny pieces". The recycling is now outside in the cupboard, although I am unsure what the long-term solution is.

Other things she is very good at include: demolishing a proper bone in sub-15 min; getting things out of a Kong in similarly short order; chasing the crows in the park. Yesterday PetPlanet delivered a squeaky stuffed sheep, which received a Two Paws Up result, and to date has remained both interesting and largely intact for nearly 24 hrs. Long may this continue.

She also jumped the fence around the lake in the park last week, in pursuit of a moorhen. And then, obviously, paid 0 attention to me calling her back. Happily she's still nervous of water, so she just stood on the bank doing her Alert Dog Is Alert pose, while I climbed the fence to hoist her back over. Then she belted off into the children's playground (which is No Dogs Allowed, though there were already two other dogs there which is why she went in), and I got a bit irritable. We are now avoiding that half of the park.

On the more positive side: she's getting v good at sit, down, "leave it", and we're working on stay. And right now she is having a nice snooze under the radiator next to me. Watching her hurtle round the park at speed is fabulous (and the walks are doubtless doing me good too).

In non-dog news: I spent the weekend mostly at the London Free School, which was awesome. I watched several films (was facilitating the movie space on Saturday), including Made In Secret (an anarcha-feminist porn collective! sort of) which I strongly recommend (watch the making-of in the DVD extras to get a different view of it). Sunday I went to one workshop on the experience & politics of the menstrual cycle (fascinating) and another one on feminist self-defence (massively empowering; the facilitator is probably going to do a series of sessions sometime soon, so let me know if you might be interested. Self-identified-women-only.).

Also chatted to many interesting people, helped carry a sofa+occupants through the house to resolve a debate about where the debrief session should take place, played Tag (it was really very cold in that building!), and facilitated the final debrief. It was the talking-to-interesting-people thing that was the best part; the weekend as a whole left me knackered but inspired. Hopefully there will be another one in a few months!
juliet: Part of a Pollock artwork in the Tate (art - pollock)
Another "selection of random things" post, then.

I went climbing yesterday & had AWESOME FUN, despite (or perhaps because of) falling off several times & sustaining a splendid bruise to the elbow. (Falling off is kind of good for you, though, because hey: you fall off, no major harm done, more inclined to throw yourself into it next time.) There are at least two things that I really love about climbing: the meditative nature of it (not thinking about anything other than what you're doing at the time); and the fact that it's about both physical ability (being able to do particular things) and mental puzzle (how can I get from A to B?). The physical exertion/exercise part helps, too. Anyway: I now have a decent pair of shoes (thank you [personal profile] doop) & a harness (thank you Mum & Dad), both for Xmas, which obviously commits me to going a lot & making use of them :)

This has led me to a certain amount of contemplating about the sports/physical activities that I enjoy & what it is that I get out of them; as opposed to the ones which I'm still not remotely interested in. I still have this mental image of myself as "not very physically inclined" from school sports, which these days is kind of out of date; but of course basically everything we did at school fell into the second category, and I hated it.

I've also been writing a lot, which is cool but a little scary so I will not say anything more about that. (Although I will put here links to the two things I wrote for the Yuletide fic exchange.)

On the subject of making things: someone on my FL linked to an auction to help Haiti, so if you want a pair of hand-knit socks, wander over there to make a bid.

This CGI video is seriously beautiful, and v hard to believe that it's all CGI.

I could have sworn I had other things to say here, but apparently not.
juliet: Me sat on the side of a mountain with my snowboard, all bundled up in boarding kit (snowboarding)
You are being shagged by a rare parrot.

ION: this week I have mostly been staying in, specifically staying in *bed*, because I can do writing-type work from there, it is warm, and it means not having to attempt not to fall over on the ice. Today, after putting on 3 layers, a fleecy skirt, a shawl, two pairs of socks, and fingerless mittens, I concluded that it might be time to put on the radiator.

My sinuses hurt. Ow, grumble, etc. Off to work meeting now which should be ... interesting.


Nov. 25th, 2009 09:36 am
juliet: The towers at Canary Wharf seen from Staves Hill in Bermondsey (london trees)
I have a mildly sore throat, a sniffle, and an itchy nose (in that way it itches when you're sore-throat-ish and sniffly). Any recommendations for heading the Unwell off at the pass? Other than vit C, zinc, & 'sitting on the sofa a bit', all of which are already well in hand. (Well; I have to go down to Bromley this afternoon but until then everything I need to do can be done from underneath a blanket.)

ION: Bohemian Rhapsody as interpreted by the Muppets, for anyone who hasn't yet encountered this. Seriously awesome.

IOON: going to The Wave in 10 days? Want something to do afterwards? Climate Camp London will be occupying a space somewhere in Central London for the rest of the weekend. More details to follow, but vegan cake will feature alongside the message to government that "business as usual" is not enough to stop climate change.

Plus if you've ever thought that you might like to be a legal observer, we are running not one but TWO training sessions in the next 10 days: one on Sun 29th Nov 3pm-5pm, one on Fri 4th Dec 7pm-9pm, both at LARC. Lovely hi-viz vests, notebooks, and lots of fascinating legal info provided.
juliet: Climate Camp logo: 3 tripods with banners, very colourful (climate camp)
Something of a drive-by posting: videos from the Swoop!

Swoop-de-Swoop! (round up video)

Young girl on fence (this is ace)

Watching the footage I'm kind of sad that I didn't get to be onsite. But the offsite stuff I was doing was necessary, so... another time!

I am *shattered* today, though - 14 hrs straight on Saturday of phone-answering and note-taking and what-all, about 7 hrs of interrupted sleep on the floor, then another 10 hrs or so on Sunday before the slow train home. Today I have mostly been reading the internet, drinking tea, and knitting, and I'm still not quite ready to talk to anyone again.

(I think I'm getting more antisocial in my old age.)
juliet: Climate Camp logo: 3 tripods with banners, very colourful (climate camp)
A handful of Climate Camp protestors (inc several people I know!) occupied the lobby of Edelman, E.On's PR company, on Tuesday. (E.On are the company who want to build a new coal-fired power station at Kingsnorth. And I think elsewhere as well.)

Video of the protest.
Video response made last night to Edelman's post-event attempts at spin.
juliet: (recycle or die)
Response from the Climate Camp media team to the Met's request that they be told where the camp will be, with lots of nice photos. (Text version here, but the video is worth watching for all the shiny photos!)

(Executive summary: "Thank you for worrying about our wellbeing. Previous evidence indicates that we can manage our own wellbeing just fine, and the hitting, theft, and illegal searches only happen when the police show up. So if you could stay away that would be lovely. kthxbye.")

Report from last week's meeting with the police. The current information is that the Met don't intend to stop the camp from forming, or to brief against us to the landowner (they accept that we leave sites in better nick than when we arrived!). Which is nice.

Sign up for the Swoop on Wednesday!

Meanwhile I am trying to get lots of work done today, so I can go to the British Museum with Mum & Wendy tomorrow, & then head off to camp for the week on Wednesday.
juliet: (Default)

Links, and other stuff:

  • Various people I know are doing LEL (London-Edinburgh-London) on bikes this week:twitter link here.
  • Other cyclists have been going rather faster round France for the last 3 weeks: some v good photos here. Also, Cav's sprint yesterday was bloody amazing. As was Bradley Wiggins' ride up Ventoux on Saturday. (I really felt for him on seeing the shots of him afterwards, sat on the floor slumped against a fence with his head down, looking like he was either about to throw up or had done already.)
  • My cycling friend Gerald was on the plinth in Trafalgar Square dressed as a dinosaur, playing swingball, and stomping on a model London.
  • Rats playing musical instruments!
  • Climate Camp this year is 26th Aug - 2nd Sept & will be somewhere within the M25, with good transport links. Video here explaining why you should come along!. I spent yesterday helping to build a bicycle generator which will be used to provide power for the London neighbourhood. The secondary aim was to produce a decent design that can be made from stuff you can find in a skip or for very cheap, & doesn't require a dedicated bike/bike frame or any more than basic DIY skills & tools (saw, drill, screwdriver). Success was achieved, but Version 2 (new & improved!) is already on the drawing board. Anyway: Climate Camp is going to be awesome, come along & check out all the exciting workshops!
  • Different sort of activism: [personal profile] damned_colonial did what looks like a fantastic keynote speech at OSCON on the topic of women in open source (slides here). The comments on this positive writeup of the talk have been getting rather toxic, in the customary ways[0]. Randal Schwarz being a particular culprit (sigh). Some of you may be interested in the discussion; [personal profile] zorkian has also suggested writing to Linux Fund about it.

Myself, I have mostly been trying to sort out work stuff (in the sense of getting existing commissions in on time & deciding What Else I Do Next); trying to get rid of stuff on Freecycle; and trying to remain calm and not hide under the bed. Spent the weekend doing climate camp stuff (direct action workshop on Saturday, which was excellent and very interesting, and raised some practical & emotional issues for me which I need to sit down and think about; and then the bike generator thing yesterday as above) and visiting my parents, which was nice.

Intermittently grumpy about what is (for me) a shocking lack of fitness: far slower than I should be on the bike, and spinning downhill is bumpy (no souplesse...). I am however aware that a) this will improve the more I get out there, & b) my standards are slightly abnormal. If I can still ride 25 miles in a day I'm not doing all that badly, really, even if it does make me unduly hungry atm.[1]

Oh yes, and Glade last weekend was fun despite the fairly wet weather, due to excellent drainage & the fact that it helpfully didn't rain after dark at any point after Thu evening. Not keen about the fact that you can see passing cars on the nearby road from the middle of the site, though - it kind of reduces the 'special getting-away-from-things' feeling. We did however have cubical jam[2], which is a superior foodstuff of the future and makes everything better. Or at least slightly more waxy.

[0] "We do X because it's what sells, so tough shit"; "if more women participated then these negative behaviours would stop"; "you're only 4 (5, 6, whatever) voices, I speak for the majority". BLAH BLAH BLAH ignorant sexist crap. I was teeth-grindingly furious by the time I was 1/3 through & am going to have to finish the thread now so I can comment [sigh].
[1] This is related to fitness, because the higher your heartrate the more blood glucose you need (as opposed to running off body fat, which you have loads of), and the less fit you are the higher your heartrate goes, roughly.
[2] Shot Bloks. Eaten by the pros, apparently. Maybe they like wax. It's a lot like eating a candle made out of jam.


Jul. 15th, 2009 09:16 am
juliet: Part of a Pollock artwork in the Tate (art - pollock)
Cyclist goes zoom (Cancellera descending on Stage 7 after he'd had to stop to switch bikes). I want a go! Also features a couple of nice shots of the Astana Machine up front, & pretty mountains.

ION: had busy-but-enjoyable weekend (did lots of work; went to the Tate on Saturday evening where they have a huge table-&-chairs, very Alice, and where I got to go look at the Pollock again, although not the Rothkos as they're off somewhere else; went to the RFH to hear [personal profile] kake's choir sing, also v good). Am desperately trying to catch up with work, which is *happening* but means I am a bit wild-eyed around the edges.

(I'm also sadly behindhand on correspondence of all sorts. My apologies to all who this might affect.)

BTW, does anyone want a bookcase? Argos flatpack (well, was flatpack, has been in assembled state for some years now), but reasonably solid & still in good nick.

Glade tomorrow!
juliet: Avatar of me with blue hair & jeans (blue hair jeans avatar)
Billy Bragg doing Old Clash Fan Fight Song (at Berlin gig last year). Actual song starts at about 03:30 of that clip.

Mr Bragg last night was top fun, as ever. Played pretty much everything I'd expect, everyone sang along (an important part of any BB gig), & the Roundhouse is a reasonable venue & wasn't overfull (hurrah).

He played the entirety of Life's A Riot as an encore, in about 15 min flat. I knew it was short, but not that it was quite *that* short. With A New England to finish, of course.
juliet: Avatar of me with blue hair & jeans (blue hair jeans avatar)
Billy Bragg doing Old Clash Fan Fight Song (at Berlin gig last year). Actual song starts at about 03:30 of that clip.

Mr Bragg last night was top fun, as ever. Played pretty much everything I'd expect, everyone sang along (an important part of any BB gig), & the Roundhouse is a reasonable venue & wasn't overfull (hurrah).

He played the entirety of Life's A Riot as an encore, in about 15 min flat. I knew it was short, but not that it was quite *that* short. With A New England to finish, of course.

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