tardis_stowaway: TARDIS under a starry sky and dark tree (twirl on)
Hello, Internet!  I am largely absent this weekend because it's time for Contra Carnivale, a dancing weekend event in San Luis Obispo.  There's gorgeous music, thrilling dancing, and the chance to hang out with some fun dancers from out of town. Also, the weather is mysteriously drop dead gorgeous.  Even for California, this is weird for this time of year, but welcome.  I wish I could share it with all of you!  *blows warm, sunny kisses to the f-list*

Meanwhile, in the Department of Globally Important News, the BBC website warns us that there are two potbellied pigs loose in Southampton.  Yes, readers around the world needed to know that, BBC! 

Right, time to pry myself off the computer. Hope y'all are having a super weekend.
tardis_stowaway: TARDIS under a starry sky and dark tree (reading outside)
-I found a cool discussion thread over at Feministe for recommendations of feminist sf/fantasy/speculative fiction books. There are a lot of authors and stories I love recced over there, and a bunch more I now want to check out. This is going in my bookmarks!

-We actually had frost last night! On the central California coast!

-Go away, sore throat. :(
tardis_stowaway: TARDIS under a starry sky and dark tree (spuffy fools for love)
While looking at local newspaper's event listings in search of some excuse to get out of the house, I saw that Common Rotation was playing in SLO.  Though I hadn't previously  heard any of their music, I'd heard of this band, both because people have recommended their music to me and because one of the band members, Adam Busch, played Warren on BtVS.  After hearing them, I am now quite smitten with their indie folk-pop harmonies.  They put on an excellent show!  There are several songs available on the website linked above, and many more live recordings, works in progress, etc archived at theunionmaid.com, including a live version of "Bitter Honey" with Amber Benson (Tara!) and Amy Ray of the Indigo Girls.  (How much fun am I having discovering this?  A lot!) 

The concert was in an art gallery/coffee shop with only about two dozen people in the audience.  Somewhat bizarrely, the audience consisted mostly of San Luis Obispo's two major demographic groups, college students and retirees, but with substantially more of the latter.  I expect to see the old folks when I see concerts by people playing things like bluegrass, but I hadn't expected to see quite so many of them here.  Is this these particular senior citizens' usual sort of music?   Were they Buffy fans?

I was dealing with some cognitive dissonance from watching the guy who shot Tara playing harmonica and singing pretty harmonies.  You can be 100% grounded in the reality that actors are not their parts, but it's still kind of odd to see a face you only know as a villain doing something so different and wholesome.  I'm glad there were no robots (that I know of!), world domination attempts, or flayings during the concert.  Hooray!
tardis_stowaway: TARDIS under a starry sky and dark tree (the sound of torchwood)
Things that were awesome about today:

1.  Mini singalong in the Goodwill store! I was looking at trousers (no success) when "Can't Take My Eyes Off of You" came on the store radio.  At the part where it bursts out loudly "I! Love!  You!  BA-ABY!/ And if it's quite alright.." I realized that not only was I accidentally humming under my breath but two other people, apparently not in the same party, started singing along.  If a few more people had joined in I'm convinced that backup dancers would have spontaneously appeared.  It happens in movies ALL THE TIME.  

2.  I saw the movie Whip It and had a ton of fun! You could describe it as a coming of age, teen girl rebellion movie crossed with a sports flick, which sounds like a recipe for badness but turned out to be awesome.   That's the sort of thing that capable screenwriters and actors can do.  Plus, the sport in question was roller derby, which is delightfully bizarre.  Ellen Page (from Juno) played the lead with pizazz and heart, and the rest of the cast was excellent as well.  It was funny, full of action-packed contact skating, and a bit moving.  The plot was somewhat predictable, but the dialog and characters were fresh enough that I didn't much care.  It's a film about discovering your passion, families both natural and chosen, and growing up alternative in a small town.  (Bonus: this showing was a sneak preview, so they had local roller derby women skating around outside the theater trying to interest passers-by. Fun!)

3.  This photo of the Spanish Prime Minister's family posing with the Obamas is great.
Apparently Spanish law allows the Prime Minister to prevent the press from publishing photos of his teenage daughters, so nobody had seen them.  The US state department didn't get the memo or something, released the photos (oops!), and revealed the big secret: the daughters are kinda goth. 

I like this photo for several reasons:
a.  Barack and Michelle seem to think this is great.  Admittedly they must have practice smiling in weird situations, but I think Barack is probably thinking that teenage goths make a nice change from the power-hungry old men in suits that he has to spend much of his time with.

b.  The Zapatero parents are accepting enough of their daughters' phase (or lifestyle...who knows at this age) that they have not strongarmed them into wearing something more conventional.  Admittedly we don't know whether they tried.  I imagine there were intense negotiations before the photo session.  "Honey, if I let you wear the Doc Martens will you change into a simple dress with no latex or fishnets?"  "Mooooom!  *sigh*  Fine.  But I'm not taking off the black nail polish!"

c.  The girls appear to be in a dilemma about how happy they can look without losing Goth cred.  On the one hand, Goths don't smile, and they are having to pose with their totally embarrassing parents.  On the other hand, they are getting to meet with Barack Obama, who even a teenaged Spanish First Goth has to admit is kinda cool. They have settled on uncertain half-smiles.  The huge slumps indicate their disapproval for Obama's message of hope.

d.  The fact that the girls have such lousy posture indicates that they are not trained in media appearances, which is somewhat refreshing.

e.  Other people's awkwardness is hilarious!
 
I do feel sorry for the girls, given that there will undoubtedly be a lot of commentary that is not so nice.  At least it will provide fodder for some properly angsty teenage poetry. 

tardis_stowaway: TARDIS under a starry sky and dark tree (torchwood sign)
Hi, y'all!  I'm back in the states after my trip to the British isles.  I had a great time!  I'll let you know when I've got my photos online.  California looks unbelievably brown by comparison, and is also on fire.  (Darn illegal marijuana farmers can't keep an eye on their camp stoves.)  Also, I go away for two months and when I come back people are bringing guns to protest healthcare reform.  WTF?!? 

On another distressing note, I finally saw Torchwood Children of Earth.  I managed to see the first three episodes while over there, but just didn't have access to a television for the last two.  I've been waiting to find out what happened, and now that I have I'm about to get back on a plane to Wales so I can have strong words with RTD.  spoiler cut, just in case anyone is even more behind than me )
Meanwhile, I've missed a lot of goings-on around the net.  I invite you to comment with the following:

-something from your life over the summer (tell me here or link to relevant lj entry...whatever)
-a fic from over the summer that I should read (CoE or other)
-something else from around the web that I should see.  This can be anything from your favorite hilarious macro to an explanation of the latest fandom drama to something in the news...whatever.  (No serious Doctor Who spoilers, please!)


tardis_stowaway: TARDIS under a starry sky and dark tree (hiro clocks)
Tonight's Heroes had me talking to my TV screen a lot.
Do the Heroes writers watch DW and hate us? Or was that accidental? Spoilers within. )

Completely unrelated note to self:  just because the huge bag of candy corn in the grocery store calls up a seasonal craving doesn't mean that you need to buy that huge bag right away.  It's ok to wait and look for a package of candy corn suitable for consumption by one.  If you buy the huge bag, you will eat too much at once, and it will be a Very Bad Idea.

tardis_stowaway: Animated conversation from The Shakespeare code. "Oh, 57 academics just punched the air!" (57 academics)
Sign I devote too much of my brain to fandom #493:

At the contra dance* earlier tonight, one dance had an unusual figure requiring pairs of men to go down the dance together, a move more typical for couples.  My first thought:  hey, look, contra slash!


*Contra is a traditional American form of folk dance, sort of like square dancing but in long lines of couples instead of squares and with a larger amount of awesomeness.  It's great! 

Con report

Sep. 4th, 2008 12:02 am
tardis_stowaway: TARDIS under a starry sky and dark tree (top hat eccleston)
Dragoncon was grand fun.  It was a fairly eventful weekend.  Among other things, I:

-won a Vogon poetry slam.  Winning a contest to write poetry in the style of the third-worst poets in the Universe is a dubious honor at best, but it was really fun.  I hadn't originally intended to participate.  When volunteers were running short, I ended up volunteering and winning my first matchup.  In the final round, where the winners so far competed against each other, the topic was naked mole rats.  Now, I'm a biology major with a fondness for bizarre animal behavior, and among mammals you just don't get much more bizarre than naked mole rats.  They're some of my favorite creatures.  I know quite a bit about them, so I managed to write a poem that was educational while still being atrocious literature!  I won a wooden egg decorated by hand to be a Dalek.  It's pretty nifty.  

-attended the Brit Track's party for the anniversaries of Doctor Who and some other shows.  The party was mysteriously lacking in traditional party characteristics like snacks or music, although some of us did briefly compensate by singing the DW theme song while beating out the rhythm on our thighs.  Despite all that, I got into a lovely long conversation about DW with [livejournal.com profile] rusty_halo , [livejournal.com profile] minervamoon , [livejournal.com profile] jaydk , [livejournal.com profile] darketernal09 , and other fans I met there.  We had lots of similar opinions, making it fun, but enough differences to keep things lively.  It was great.

-watched the Mighty Rassilon Arts Players*'  From TARDIS with Love, a spoof of DW with a dash of James Bond style thrown in.  It was hilarious, like watching a live action version of a high quality crackfic.  As a bonus, the guy they had playing Captain Jack was appropriately good-looking and spent a good chunk of the play shirtless.  Huzzah!

-had people complement and even ask to take pictures of my Turn Left Donna costume.  Having my work on that beetle appreciated was wonderfully flattering.

-saw panels with Gareth David Lloyd, James Marsters, Nathan Filion, Alan Tudyk, Sean Astin, and more.  They were all entertaining speakers.  The Firefly lads in particular seemed to be having a great time in each other's company on stage. 

-actually woke up in time to see the parade, which was full of great costumes.  The costumewatching throughout the convention was excellent.

-attended a panel on New Who so crowded they had to move everybody to a new room. My fandom is unexpectedly large, like the TARDIS interior!

-let my fangirl tendencies rule me for long enough to stand in line for James Marsters's autograph.  Eee!  I managed not to completely embarass myself or lose my capacity for speech while shaking his hand and collecting the autograph.  He is very friendly and still quite good-looking in real life, although rather too tan to play a vampire at the moment.

-barely restrained myself from spending nearly $300 on a corset.  I don't need a corset.  I wouldn't have many occasions to wear it.  But it was so pretty, and it made my figure look great!  Sigh...maybe I'll get one next year.

-met a guy in a panel on the Whedonverse track and ended up seeing a movie with him after the con.  Alas, he lives on the opposite coast from me.


*a comedy group that has previously performed plays with titles like Buffy:  Warrior PrincessRomeo and Ethel, the Pirate's Daughter; and Welcome Back, Potter.  Their first play many years ago was classic Who themed, hence the name.  

tardis_stowaway: TARDIS under a starry sky and dark tree (team tea w/Ten)
For the first time, my family opened Christmas crackers this year. I don't know where my mother found them, since here in America they're not commonly sold, but I was ridiculously excited to see them. Was it because of the chance to participate in a fun new activity? Or how about the opportunity to experience a little bit of culture from across the pond?

Of course not.

I was gleeful because I got to be like Rose and the Doctor in The Christmas Invasion. There were even little paper crowns! Squee!!!


Yes, I am such a dork! Oh well. Having "Song for Ten" stuck in my head is not exactly a bad thing.

Merry Christmas or celebration of choice to one and all!

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