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Safe Haven

Watching the first season of Haven, which is a sort of small-town/X-Files crossbreed. Kirsti mentioned it, and I like talking TV shows and the like with her, and it’s certainly not the kind of thing I’d avoid. Spoilers after cut, and I should really figure out some kind of cut-off point for when to quit worrying about spoilers. First season only came out last year, but I watch older things too. Continue reading “Safe Haven”

Nerves.

It is ridiculous to get stage fright when you are going to see someone else. Still.

Off to Scottish crime authors night; details later, from keyboard rather then phone.

ETA at 1 a.m. on the 25th:

I had a lovely time.  😀  Stuart MacBride, who was the author whose name caught my attention in the first place, is very funny in pretty much exactly the way you’d expect a man who writes gritty (and/or morbidly cheerful) stories about serial killers to be.  He read the short story I just linked, too; said it was the first time he’d read it for an audience.  He signed my copies of halfhead and Flesh House, and seemed pleased to hear I’d liked halfhead.  Apparently he got a lot of grief for writing something that wasn’t in the series he’s best known for; I think that’s a serious shame, as it was a good book and a damn fun story.

Ian Rankin I had heard of and read before; Denise Mina I hadn’t.  I’m rather regretting the last, now; I would have picked up her book The End of Wasp Season if I weren’t on a strict self-imposed moratorium of Only One More Book This Year Dammit.  (There was an accident incident with a bookstore in Niagara Falls.  Oh lord, was there an incident.)

Selective perception.

Rewatched the first episode of American Horror Story as part of highly delicate TV negotiations (to wit, John’s desire to see the end of the season of The Shield is stronger than my desire to watch the next episode (now next two episodes) of AHS[1], and I’m not watching it when I have the TV alone because he’s interested in it. Continue reading “Selective perception.”

I didn’t use to believe that the past could reach cold hands out towards the living…

Dammit.  Thoughts are all over the place, and I need to be up in five hours.  Some very sketchy jottings on ghosts as handled in American Horror Story. Spoilers follow. Continue reading “I didn’t use to believe that the past could reach cold hands out towards the living…”

Tired

Didn’t get a lot done today, but it was nice to spend time with John.  Went out to dinner this evening and then picked up the cat, and it’s really great to have him back.  Unfortunately, he’s annoying the other cat, and it’s really not tenable.  She was happy without him around.  Now she’s on top of the cupboard again.  I’ve shut him in the bathroom, but it’s not exactly a long-term solution.

We can’t–it’d be miserable, giving Angus away.  And it’s not fair to Abby like this.  Maybe we can find some way to split them up in terms of which floor they’re on.  I don’t know; it’s late and I’m tired and I can tell I’m at that point where my focus is just stretching out and nothing is getting done.  Meant to go to bed a couple of hours ago, and then we smelt smoke, and that is just not a relaxing event.  We spent a quarter-hour trying to figure out where the hell it was coming from.  (It turned out that a giant housefly got trapped under the lightbulb of one of the lamps, and when we turned the light off, the smoke smell started really spreading.  Rather like when you blow out a scented candle, and the scent’s very strong for a bit, because the particles are wafting around spreading instead of being burnt up.)

All of this to say I’m tired.  More tomorrow; want to discuss ghosts as handled in American Horror Story.

Wan. Wan is a word that needs more love.

I was actually in bed, about ready to turn out the light, when I remembered this.

I almost didn’t get up, but… well.  I can live with missing a day (although I find it amusing and a little saddening that I started missing days when I was on vacation at home, rather than on vacation on the road).  I don’t like it, but I can live with missing a day.  But  missing two days, that just seemed like that start of the end.

Was job-hunting today.  It didn’t go very well–a lot of positions that require degrees or years of concentrated experience that I don’t have–but I found a few places to apply. I… keep feeling like I need to find some kind of focus, instead of scrabbling just to find the next job as quickly as I can.  But I always end up feeling slightly guilty and ashamed when I do that; I’ve learned to see it as something almost prissy, putting aside one job because another might be better.

I need to stop doing that.  There are a lot of jobs out there[1].  There is one day every twenty-four hours, and I should try and at least make sure I’m not doing something that grinds me down to where I’m too tired to think about what I’d like to do.  I can afford to look, at least.


[1] Theoretically.  Work with me.

Belated. But less belated.

I thought I’d get a little of this down.

Examples of made men–in the “simulacra of humans created by magic” sense–include the golem, Pygmalion’s sculpture, that strange bronze man that Medea helped Jason and the Argonauts defeat, and Frankenstein’s monster.  I’ll also note the soldiers that sprung up from dragon’s teeth–they weren’t really a created individual, which is most of what I’m looking at, but they do come to mind.

Two functions seem to show up.  First, there’s creatures created not to fulfill a duty but simply to be, because having them around was what their creator wanted.  Out of this you get Frankenstein’s monster, Pygmalion’s sculpture, Snegurochka the Snow Maiden from Russian folklore, and actually pretty much any of dozen examples of “child created out of objects rather than born because the parents wanted a child so much”.  This is not what I’m thinking about right now.

Second, there’s the made man that has a protective function.  The golem is pretty much the most blatant example I can think of; persecuted minority + ghetto + desperate need for protector -> great hulking clay defender.  The strange bronze man (can’t remember his name, but I’m sure one of my Asimov books mentions him as being the first example of a robot, which is actually a pretty fair description) was also, IIRC, protecting the land that he was found on, although the story there focuses on the protagonists who need to get around the protector.  Hrm.  Made men as having a tie to the land–made of clay, protecting a specific terrain?  Need to reread that Greek myth.  On a similar note, the soldiers sprung up when the dragon’s teeth were planted in the earth.

…actually, that last sentence probably addresses every single metaphor I want to play with, except the birds and the Fowler.

(I can’t actually promise that any of this has a point.  It’s mostly just an expression of one aspect of the context I’m putting a particular story into, so I have it down in a concrete form.  Once it’s in a concrete form, it’s easier to refer to, build on, and change if I need to.)

Hrm.  Cannot think of birds having any association with made men.  I know that in Russian fairy tales, sending the raven off to get the water of death (which made a dead body whole again) and the dove off to get the water of life (which made the dead body not dead) showed up occasionally, but I think that was strictly restoring a previously living human to life.

Alright.  Moving away from myths/legends/folklore of made men and towards the scarecrow…

  1. made by humans, yes;
  2. protective device, yes;
  3. associated with cultivation and so with earth and specific patches of land, yes;
  4. wards off birds, yes.

Thinking of them, still, as made of what I can only call natural fibers, albeit cultivated ones.  The idea of a jack-o’lantern-headed scarecrow, while quite possibly impractical, is also one I really like.  So it stays.  (I was influenced by Bradbury’s depiction of Carapace Clavicle Moundshroud at an early age… the image of someone leaving this plane of existence by blowing out their own candle flame and then having the smoke curl out of ears and eyes and nose and mouth is, to me, incredibly powerful.)

Need to look at the associations of fire; off the top of my head, there’s just standard transformative stuff, the duality of creation and destruction, nothing particularly special.

Alright, I thought vacation was *over*…

It still feels like Friday.  And it’s past 2 a.m. on Saturday morning.

Am home, and since getting home… well, there’s been a lot of late nights and a lot of sleeping in.  Until noon, today, in fact.

I don’t like this.  I really don’t like the feeling of so much time lost, slipping away.  And I’m a bit worried because of how upset I actually was.  I’m not sure if it was just the sleeping in and feeling disoriented when I woke up, or being late to take my meds, or what.  I mean, I settled down fine for breakfast, but I was really unhappy before then.

I don’t imagine staying up until 2-a.m.-plus today will help either, though.

In other news… well, not much.  I’m going to be keeping an eye on my mood, and going back to the job hunt.  I made it out to stitch-n-bitch last night, and felt a bit more awkward than usual, but it wore off.  And I’m going to set my alarm for tomorrow.

Just about finished catching up on Breaking Bad; the closing music is playing for the end of season four.  Brilliant show.  Have started watching American Horror Story as well, and am–

Oh.

Oh holy crap.

Okay.  Well.  Just saw the end-end of the last episode of season four.  Walter, you son of a bitch.  That’s brilliant.  That fits.  It’s horrible.

I highly recommend that show, FTR.  Check it out, if you haven’t seen it.