Link: A New Meme, Please Get One

From the progressive feminist site, Shakesville, a link dump with commentary on the recent spate of blaming immigrants for swine flu.

In short, Media Matters and other conservatives have started blaming the epidemic on filthy Mexicans and other undesirables. I wish the tactic was novel or surprising, but as Shakesville points out, the United States has a long, ignominious history of exactly this thing.

It’s really not the same.

I knew editors made a difference. I really did. But I didn’t know how much difference on editor could make.

I’ve had a subscription to PC Gamer Magazine for years. Our house has enjoyed the magazines and bought our games largely according to their recommendations. We especially enjoyed the magazine during the tenure of Kristen Salvatore as editor-in-chief. We’d been about to quit, actually, when she took over as EIC. Within two issues we renewed our subscription and didn’t regret it.

Ms. Salvatore recently got a job doing something else — a promotion of sorts, I understand? Though I cannot for the life of me figure out where she’s working now. I tried to find out if it was another editorial position, because if so, I wanted to try whatever new magazine she ran, regardless of content. That’s how good I think she is. That’s how much PC Gamer has suffered since she left.

The magazine is a lifeless shell of what it once was. No character. No flavor to the reviews or writing. No bite to the editorials, no real industry insight. It’s a pallid imitation of the PC Gamer my household read and enjoyed.

Kudos to you, Ms. Salvatore. I wish you the best in your future endeavors.

As for PC Gamer Magazine, well. I wish you, too, the best. You need it.

Key 2 Time: A Few Remarks

I’m working my way through the Big Finish “Key 2 Time” Doctor Who original audio productions. The first part is called “The Judgment of Isskar.” And I have to say, it’s not my favorite Doctor Who audio production.

There are too many funny aliens.

I mean, it’s an audio production. Full cast, special effects, music, etc. And I’ve noticed with all the proceeding audio productions that, if the character does not have a funny voice, I think they look human. Funny voices are the only way to indicate xenobiology. But the thing is, funny voices are also more difficult for me to listen to. Harder to comprehend. I can get by when one of the alien races is, say, Daleks, and the other is a sentient raindrop. Or one alien race has low voices, the other high, something like that. But in “The Judgment of Isskar,” one alien race has a rasping, insect-like voice, and the other has a buzzing, insect-like voice.

Um.

Rasping and buzzing are really, really close together. Especially when listening to the story in a ten-year-old rattling car moving at seventy miles per hour.

In addition, this story has two original female characters. Their voices sounded indistinguishable to me. I could tell them apart by their word choice, not their tone, which didn’t work so well if all they said was “yes” or “run!”

I’m onto the next part, “Destroyer of Delights,” and so far I’m finding the casting and production to be working a bit better.

Five-Inch Onagers

Onagers 09

My kids recently built onagers. It was cool.

Photos follow!

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Living in the future: a guest link

Wiredferret blogs about life here in the future.

Reading and Book meme

Courtesy of Caroline, aka Madmarvelgirl.

Reading and book meme

1. What author do you own the most books by?

Um. Tamora Pierce? Or maybe Stephen Ambrose? Or Anne Perry? Or maybe Lois Bujold? I’d have to look. I own very nearly everything Tamora Pierce has written. And I still own it. At various points in my life I have owned ninety percent of Stephen King’s ouvre, or Robert Heinlein’s works. But I’ve gotten rid of those. I own the first, I dunno, half-dozen or so of each of Anne Perry’s mystery series. Oh, and I own a swath of Dorothy Sayers. Hmm. Thinking on it, I guess I’d have to go with Pierce’s stuff. It’s all those sets of four books . . .

2. What book do you own the most copies of?

At most I own two copies of a handful of things, because I have the hardcover and a paperback copy. That happens a lot, when I can’t wait to read something but then, later, I want a copy that is comfortable to read in bed.

3. What fictional character are you secretly in love with?

I am not-at-ALL-secretly in love with Cordelia Naismith Vorkosigan and Ekaterina Vorkosigan. I am more secretly in-something with Festina Ramos from James Alan Gardner’s League of Peoples books. Secretly because, well, Festina is not a good choice as an object of affection. She’s got a streak of self-loathing that runs through her, manifesting as a desire to prove something to somebody. She wouldn’t be an easy lover, let alone partner. Not to mention that overly-exciting things keep happening to her.

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Uncanny X-Men brings the gay

Contains SPOILERS for Uncanny X-Men #508! SPOILERS.

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