- If you're looking for my introductory "about me" posts, they're here (about me as a person) and here (about me as a fan).
- If you're looking for my fic, you can find it at my AO3 account eleanorjane.
- If you're looking for my vids, you can find them under the various Vids tags, or at my vids site Vidiot.
- I tweet as eleanor and tumbl as ejlh.
In fact, the last three months have been hectic and draining, although not unenjoyable. I've been seconded to a project role in my organisation's head office, which is full of interesting challenges - although it's always a bit of a startling reminder how disconnected the corporate branch is from the frontline work, and how different are their concerns and priorities. Still - it's great on the resume, it's interesting on a personal level (I've finally realised that to be happy in a job, I need to have growth opportunities) and I managed to negotiate a 10% payrise.
(I was very proud of myself - I've never negotiated my pay before, and it's substantially more than they'd intended to pay me.)
Buuuut -- I'm working in the city which adds nearly an hour of commute to my day (with considerable extra expense, but whatever), and I can't cruise on autopilot, and there's a shit ton of meetings and workshops. So I end every day exhausted, which means my evenings are a combination of some desultory gaming (Exalted! Shadowrun! Dungeons and Dragons! Exalts Fall Into the Wyld and Land In Faerun! Fun times) and staring at the wall trying to recoup some energy. Oh, and I'm no longer able to do my 9-day fortnights in this role.
So. Tired Eleanor is tired. Happy, though.
How y'all doing? ;)
So, I figured I'd share a few of my favourites. In no particular order:
The Sound of Silence by Disturbed
(Comparison: the original The Sound of Silence by Simon & Garfunkel.)
Running Up That Hill by Placebo
(Comparison: the original Running Up That Hill by Kate Bush.)
Fiddle and the Drum by A Perfect Circle
(Comparison: the original Fiddle and the Drum by Joni Mitchell.)
Mother by Lissie
(Comparison: the original Mother by Danzig.)
Paint it Black by Hidden Citizens
(Comparison: the original Paint it Black by The Rolling Stones. Also a good cover by The Tea Party.)
We Can't Stop by Bastille
(This is a fascinating take on the Miley Cyrus original, turning a party anthem into a reflection of a desperate and unhealthy life.)
Hurt by Johnny Cash
(Comparison: the original Hurt by Nine Inch Nails, a very different but equally poignant song.)
The Needle and the Damage Done by Our Lady Peace
(Comparison: the original The Needle and the Damage Done by Neil Young. Also a neat live cover by The Pretenders, and one by Pearl Jam.)
This post is brought to you by the fact that I have 38 cover versions of Hallelujah in my iTunes library. (Rufus Wainwright's version is better than Jeff Buckley's, fight me.) Some songs, just everyone wants to sing them.
I dunno, I feel like this year has just galumphed past, and I know everyone says this every year but it's truuuuuue. On the up side, it does make for really easy small talk - for the next three weeks I can replace all instances of "so, any fun plans for the weekend?" with "OMG HOW IS IT DECEMBER ALREADY" and be guaranteed of mutual "I KNOW WTF". Also, being smug about being done with xmas gift-buying (thankyou online shopping) is a great way to get conversational reactions from others. ;) (Up to and including a death-glare from my boss that practically set me on fire.)
In other news: fuck Tumblr. This change squarely impacts how I use Tumblr, and I have zero interest in giving them any more of my effort.
And their smarmy "oh there's other sites for porn", oh my GOD. Why do people not get that it's not about OMGPORN, it's about sex being a normal, healthy part of life (for people who want it to be) and excising every thought or mention of it from allll of our spaces and cramming it into the one box that's allowed to hold it... is totally unhealthy and totally antithetical to how people actually live, and thus how they want to engage with the platforms that narrate their lives.
"There's other sites for porn" is like being told "enjoy your marriage for companionship and love, but if you want sex you've gotta go to an escort". That's *fine* for people who negotiate their lives to be that way, but for many (most?) people it's a totally unrealistic and unreasonable expectation to divorce something so intrinsic from the entire rest of their lives.
I hope tumblr crashes and burns, I really do.
I remember recentlyish I read several Harry Potter fics back to back, with adult Harry et al, focusing on Wizarding architecture and buildings. There was one where Draco owned Grimmauld Place, and another about Draco restoring Malfoy Manor (I think). There might also have been others?
Can anyone provide links? I'm a bit stumped.
If anyone has any recs for Qui Gon Lives fics, particularly ones that focus less on his relationship with Obi-Wan, and more on the effect of Anakin having a master who was a better fit for training him - I would be very appreciative!
Hell, any fun Star Wars AUs (particularly of the "what if X was different from canon history" variety) would be great.
That said: my expectations were pretty low. So I didn't come out of it dancing on clouds or anything, but I didn't hate it - which is more than can be said for the last two ensemble MCU movies. :)
( Thoughts, spoilery, a mixed bag: )
HUH. Okay. I have a theory. ( spoilers again for IW, and speculation about A4 and GotG3 )
I don't know if that hangs together in light of any other casting news or plot spoilers but it makes sense to me, and it's how I'd do it. (Though I think we've already established I don't think like the MCU PtB!)
Anyway, movie. *nods*
I have come to the conclusion that it's not that I'm over the MCU, it's that my ideas of sense and good storytelling diverges wildly from the PTB, who meddle with the ensemble movies in a way that they don't seem to with the single-character movies.
I've enjoyed basically all the standalone movies - some I merely enjoyed, through to some I adored - whereas the ensemble movies have been largely a hot mess. (Though I did enjoy the first Avengers at the time, I think it holds up less well under scrutiny, particularly once you're already disenchanted.)
The up side of missing the release of Infinity War, though, was that I finally got to watch Black Panther now it's out on iTunes (it being the first MCU movie I missed at the cinema). I have to admit, I was a lot less impressed than I expected to be, though that may be because of people talking it up before I saw it. I mean, I did enjoy it, but...
( Spoilery Black Panther reactions: )
But you know, I'm just not ready for this? I'm not ready for some/all of my faves to die. I'm angry that the MCU PTB seem to have pivoted from where they were going with the really good years of MCU. I'm frustrated that they seem to be into making people be stupid in order to move the plot along (see: the entirety of the total clusterfuck otherwise known as Civil War).
Maybe fandom has spoiled me. With a franchise like MCU we get an instalment or two every year and in between we iterate and polish and perfect, and the examinations of character and theme are so much more nuanced, as a result, than anything the studios could put out. Maybe it's not fair to compare one studio to the finest crowdsourced storytelling that mutual brainpower and fannnish love can buy.
Just... argh. I want my big dumb fun fandom back. I miss being excited and in love instead of wary and Possibly Heartbroken.
That said, I'm here and reading everyone, I just... haven't had the energy to make sense of my life enough to put it into words. Work is very rewarding and very stressful all at once. And the rest of the time is spent on ... well, roleplaying :) G, my housemate, is still running the Awesome Awesome Exalted Campaign of Amazeballs for me, and I'm tempted to start doing weekly recaps of what's happened in the game. (I have no idea whether anyone would want to read it other than me, though.)
So, yeah, not dead. Yay! :)
I have rediscovered, back in 2009, a series of posts I wrote summarising material gleaned from the Star Trek RPG then published by LUG and Decipher, as a primer to help people new to Trek pick up a bunch of canon-ish background material relatively easily.
As it's eight years old, I thought I'd give it a bump since Trek is back in the collective consciousness again.
The posts are on my canon: star trek tag. They generally haven't been updated to incorporate anything relating to AOS (except one bit), and refer almost entirely to the prime universe/timeline. Re-linked, since someone out there might find it useful.
I saw this linked on Tumblr and lost three hours of my life last night as I ripped through this when I should have been sleeping for work because I couldn't stop reading:
What We Pretend We Can't See (131279 words) by gyzym
Fandom: Harry Potter - J. K. Rowling
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Draco Malfoy/Harry Potter, Hermione Granger/Ron Weasley, Neville Longbottom/Ginny Weasley
Seven years out from the war, Harry learns the hard truth of old history: it’s never quite as far behind you as you thought.
I didn't know people were still writing HP fic like this. I'm so happy. ♥
(recs for anything else in this vein gratefully appreciated; I've reread Transfigurations and the collected works of Blamebrampton a ridiculous number of times at this point and would love something new.)
So, my 2016:
- I started the year working for a community services non-profit employed through an agency. They liked me and wanted to keep me, so at the end of February they put me on a contract, which was gratifying.
- At the end of March, my partner moved out and dumped me, in a not particularly elegant way. The breakup was painful, which wasn't very surprising as he was not a communicative man even at the best of times. However, I have always done just fine on my own, and after an Easter weekend of wallowing at my parents' house, I was pretty much fine. We have remained cordial albeit distant friends.
- This prompted me to make an offer to G, one of my closest and oldest friends - G had split with his long-time partner at the end of 2015, and was visiting family in another state for six weeks before returning to Brisbane to find somewhere to live. (The week before Easter was a bad week - G left for six weeks, my partner dumped me and moved out, and my only real friend at work went overseas for three months. I felt a bit abandoned!) So I said to G, "well, I've got this spare room empty..." and got back "...I'll be back in next weekend." \o/
- So my domestic situation is pretty damn great. G is a great friend and I absolutely love living with him. And as the absolute icing on the cake, G is also the only person I know who is as keen about (tabletop roleplaying) gaming as I am, and thus has been running a frigging amazing one-on-one Exalted game for me for the last eight months. SO HAPPY. 😍
- Meanwhile, in May, I was offered a year-long promotion from August 2016 to August 2017, acting as the team leader for our region's Admin team. There was some awkwardness about how that happened, but basically from August onwards I've been loving my job. I really enjoy leadership, and I am extremely thankful for the opportunity -- I had no leadership experience on my resume to date, so this has been very valuable.
So to sum up, in 2016 I: am far happier out of my previous relationship; have acquired an excellent housemate which has also strengthened our friendship even more; am able to access my favourite hobby whenever I want, instead of having to wait for the moons to align; have stepped into a work role I genuinely really enjoy; have significantly strengthened my resume for my next job search.
I sort of feel like I stole all the good fortune everyone else should have had in 2016. Sorry people! *sheepish*
I hope 2017 for you all is as awesome as 2016 was for me.
If you aren't here from the friending meme, and you haven't already checked it out, and you'd like to meet more people, do check it out -
Do it for the giraffes!
In other news, I will shortly be winding down my venerable and long-time LiveJournal, ladyjestyr (and my secondary fandom LJ, eleanorjane, and let's just confuse things by making that my primary username here on Dreamwidth, good job Eleanor). Much of the content there has been crossposted from here since I moved to Dreamwidth, and I'll be investigating import options to capture the earlier stuff and the LJ-specific comment threads. I really don't check LJ any more at all, and with the brouhaha over the servers moving to Russia, it seems like a good time.
If you're a LiveJournal user and I haven't already connected with you on Dreamwidth, please do let me know your DW username so I can read you over here instead. If you're a LiveJournal-only user and you haven't yet checked it out, I do recommend Dreamwidth -- it runs very stably* off a fork of LJ's software, which is much improved from the base IMO, and Dreamwidth is generally an ethical and very user-responsive company. There's no advertising, basic accounts are free, and premium/paid features are very reasonable.
* Is stably even a real word? I sort of think it should be stablely, but that's just as weird. I dunno.
1. Your main fandom of the year?
Probably Marvel Cinematic Universe at the start of the year, migrating to Star Wars? Honestly, I tend to go where the recs go. :)
2. Your favorite film watched this year?
Rogue One would be close behind, though, and I also really enjoyed Star Trek Beyond, and Doctor Strange.
3. Your favorite book read this year?
I didn't read much new-to-me published fiction, so unless you're counting rereads (in which case the oeuvre of Guy Gavriel Kay will win every year), I'd have to say Valour's Choice by Tanya Huff, which reminded me how much I love military sci-fi.
4. Your favorite TV show of the year?
This was the year I really gave up on TV. Pretty much the only stuff I made time for was QI (SANDI ♥) and Mock the Week, so I'd have to say one of those.
5. Your favorite online fandom community of the year?
6. Your best new fandom discovery of the year?
I... don't actually know that I made any fandom discoveries this year? I have had a lot less time for reading than in past years, which definitely affects that - I haven't had time to keep up with my AO3 subscriptions, let alone go looking for new stuff.
7. Your biggest fandom disappointment of the year?
I would say Captain America: Civil War, except I knew going into it that it would be that bad. But it could have been so good! *sigh*
8. Your TV boyfriend of the year?
9. Your TV girlfriend of the year?
It's weird, I don't tend to fixate on specific characters the way other people do - I might love to read about them or watch them, but they're usually not my type at all.
10. Your biggest squee moment of the year?
Probably the Sabotage scene from Star Trek Beyond. "I have the beats and shouting." Hee! ♥
11. The most missed of your old fandoms?
I miss the early heady days of MCU fandom, where everything was possible. :) I also had a major HP-verse nostalgia trip this year and reread a bunch of beloved fic which still holds up really very well.
12. The fandom you haven't tried yet, but want to?
I must admit, as a long-time gaming nerd, Critical Role has been piquing my interest. :)
(Having said that, one of the reasons I have a lot less fandom time these days is that post-breakup, I have a new housemate - a long-time close friend and the GM of my gaming group, who's running an utterly awesome one-on-one Exalted game for me. Why watch other people roleplaying when I could be doing it myself? :))
13. Your biggest fan anticipations for the New Year?
Star Wars: Episode VIII. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. Mass Effect: Andromeda. (I'm trying to get the Mass Effect trilogy played, finally, before its release - hampered by my PC's new overheating issue, grr!)
Honestly, I thought Ghostbusters was fucking great. The editing was a bit shaky, I thought - you could see the holes where scenes had been and weren't any more - but the movie was better without the scenes they took out, and honestly you could have just given me two straight hours of Holtzmann licking her guns and being better than everything and I'd have been happy.
And oh, god, KEVIN. I feel like a bit of a traitor for going to see a movie whose defining feature in the zeitgeist is its female cast and then delighting in the male bit part, but honestly, Kevin was a fucking treasure and basically a rather daffy pet in human skin and I will fight you if you don't agree. (Okay, I won't, I'll just be sad for you.)
It is not often I get a movie that's exactly what I wanted from it. Ghostbusters hit that mark again and again, so I am perfectly content.
Also, jesus, HOLTZMANN. ♥
(Edit: also, I really want a Holtzmann vid to "Timber". That would be aces.)
The hang-tag talked about the knit blend, and included the immortal line “…with a hint of alpaca…”.
Now, call me crazy, but when your fibre mix includes a small amount of a particular fibre, you usually list it as “5% alpaca”, or similar. “Hint of”, to me, says RECIPE.
So I can’t help but imagine that at the sweatshop, the poncho is lovingly handcrafted and then finished off with a delicate garnish of grated alpaca over the top.
I mimed this out to my housemate, complete with alarmed bleating to simulate the alpaca being grated, and he laughed and suggested “Six letters, starts and ends with A.” I looked a bit blank – “Hint of alpaca!” he pointed out. “Do you not do crosswords or something?”
In other news, my new housemate is pretty great. :)
Mostly. I'm working at a new job; it's only a temporary contract, although I was told otherwise when I was recruited - still, it's valuable experience in a growing industry I'd been hoping to enter, so it's definitely worth doing. It's a hell of a slog; there's more work there than I can handle, so I've been working a lot of unpaid overtime* and being very stressed. For all of that, though, I actually really enjoy the job itself and not hating my job is a delightful novelty.
(* that's 'a lot' by my standards, not by 'crunch time in the videogaming industry' standards or anything)
Other than that, though, life continues as it always does. Gaming three times a week - D&D with Chris's group on Tuesday nights, Exalted and/or Shadowrun with my long-running group on Wednesday and Saturday nights. Raiding in WoW on Sunday and Monday nights. When I put it like that, it's no surprise I've been a ghost around these parts, I guess.
I've noticed a real tendency to disengage from social networks lately - I still read everything multiple times a day, I just ... find it hard to get up the wherewithal to comment. I shall attempt to rectify that.
So, given that I came into Ant-Man with no real feeling about how things ought to be: ( my thoughts, positive but non-specifically spoilery )
I had no major complaints and a lot of fun. More like this please, Marvel.
That's along with about 85% of my department - our roles are being moved overseas. We had the opportunity to apply for one of the retained positions, but like almost everyone else, I decided to take the package and go.
It's a new experience for me; I've never been made redundant before. I'm fortunate in that my employers are providing a lot of support, including access to an excellent career transition service, and the package is pretty damn generous. I have heard horror stories from those not so fortunate with other redundancies - this process could be a lot worse.
I have seriously mixed feelings about it all. On the one hand, this is a good prompt to go out and find a position that'll be perfect for me, and I'm in a better position to do so than I've ever been before, and I've learnt a lot in my current job about what I do and don't want from future jobs. On the other hand, I genuinely am going to miss this place; it's been hands-down the best place I've ever worked, with good leadership and colleagues.
We were notified in March that this was happening; I volunteered to stay on during the transition, so I've still had a job up until now. That ends this week; I finish Wednesday. I've applied for a few jobs so far, but haven't had any nibbles, and to be honest I don't mind the idea of taking a few weeks off and just relaxing (and working on a few projects). But the uncertainty is getting to me, especially given that I'm hoping my next job is going to be a step up, not just more of the same.
Anyway, one benefit of my new no-longer-working-from-home lifestyle is that I tend to go to the cinema a lot more often. Tonight, we saw Jupiter Ascending. My thoughts under the cut:
( spoilery: )
I don't really have much other news. I saw Kingsman last week as well, but I am more conflicted about it. (I loved it! but I feel sort of guilty about that!) I saw Big Hero 6 a few weeks back and enjoyed it a lot, although I saw the "twists" coming miles off.
Next cinema trip for me may well be Penguins of Madagascar, because I am easy. Chris wants to see The Seventh Son, but we'll see; the trailers haven't inspired me in the slightest. Home is coming in a month; I'm very ambivalent about it. It's not the True Meaning of Smekday; if I can make myself remember that I should be fine. And then it's a dry spell until Avengers: Age of Ultron on April 23rd - about which I am also ambivalent, but at least if it turns out badly there will be several metric tons of fanworks doing it better. :)
This is possibly my only regret about the Internet - I find it almost impossible to consume the things I love any more without that consumption being coloured by my knowledge of the people behind the things I love. I'm not going to say that I liked it better when authors were just a postage-stamp-sized headshot on the flap of a dustjacket, but I'm thinking about it.
In other news, I'm super tired. I'm so tired that I bailed on the Pentatonix concert I was meant to go to last night - for which I'd bought tickets and all - and said "screw this, I'm just going home". It's not a lack of sleep, per se, it's just a total lack of "me" time, chill-out-at-home-and-do-nothing time. This weekend is going to be full of that sort of time and I will stab people in the eyeballs if they try to make me do things.
Was it a deleted scene? Am I just imagining it? Can anyone help?
Someone says "Oh, it's a movie with Clint!" and your first reaction is "well, Marvel hasn't made a Hawkeye movie yet, and his appearance in Thor is blink-and-you'll-miss-it, so they're probably talking about Avengers", when you realise they're talking about Eastwood, not Barton.
For instance, Hollywood has always had an issue with casting older actors to play younger characters (eg the mid-20s actors playing teenagers in the original Beverley Hills 90210). However, Home takes this to ridiculous extremes: Tip, the main character - who is nine years old in the book - is being played by Rihanna.
Rihanna does not sound like a nine-year-old, people.
(p.s. i'm very tired!)
You can tell a lot about someone by the type of music they listen to. Hit shuffle on your media player and write down the first 20 songs. Then pass this on to 10 people. One rule: no skipping.
Well, I disagree that someone's musical taste tells you much of anything except their background, and I don't do the tagging thing, but here goes:
1. Storm Large - Ladylike
2. A Perfect Circle - The Fiddle and the Drum
3. Depeche Mode - Hole to Feed
4. Tom Jones with Heather Small - You Need Love Like I Do
5. Paul Mac feat. Peta Morris - Just The thing
6. A Perfect Circle - Vanishing
7. Marina and the Diamonds - Mowgli's Road
8. Robbie Williams feat. Rupert Everett - They Can't Take That Away From Me
9. Sir Mixalot - Baby Got Back
10. Portishead - Sour Times
11. Franz Ferdinand - Take Me Out
12. Juno Reactor - Rotorblade
13. Tori Amos - China
14. Brian Tyler & Klaus Badelt - Deo et Patri
15. Supergrass - Alright
16. Paul Kelly - To Her Door
17. Screaming Jets - Shine On
18. N.E.R.D. feat. Lee Harvey & Vita - Lapdance
19. Sarah McLeod - He Doesn't Love You
20. House of Pain - Shamrocks & Shenanigans
Seems appropriately eclectic...
To wit, a rec:
You Know How I Feel, aka, The Adventures of Bucky and Muffy the Dinosaur (4511 words) by ifeelbetter
Fandom: Marvel Cinematic Universe, Captain America (Movies)
Rating: Not Rated
Warnings: Author Chose Not To Use Archive Warnings
Relationships: Avengers & Bucky
Characters: James "Bucky" Barnes, original dinosaur
Bucky saved a tiny dinosaur and took her home to Avengers Tower and on the way remembered how to laugh and sleep in soft beds.
Who is your Doctor?
Nine. I have great fondness for Eleven, too. I didn't much enjoy Ten - I have no objection to David Tennant, but I disliked the character and his arc and generally lost interest in the series around that time. I've never been into classic Who (though I did get a letter from Peter Davison when I was a little girl) because I'm allergic to visibly bad special effects (I don't watch classic Trek, either).
Who is your Doctor's companion? AMY POND ♥♥♥ (and, okay, Rory is alright too ;))
Who is your Batman? I... kind of dislike Batman, to be honest, partly because he's canonically a dick (caveat: not a highly educated opinion here) and particly because he's such a fanboy favourite that his existence exerts logic-defying reality-bending powers on the DC verse.
Who is your Cat Woman? No strong feelings here. (Why can't there be a Who is your Wonder Woman? question here? Stupid DC. (My answer would be Gina Torres. Or, these days, if they insist on someone younger, Gina Carano.))
Who is your Sherlock Holmes? Jonny Lee Miller.
Who is your fictional female federal agent? My own RPG characters don't count, right? ;) I'd have to say Kensi Blye, then, with an honourable mention for Sydney Bristow.
Who is your Bond? Would that I could say Idris Elba here. Daniel Craig makes an adequate substitute, though I have a great fondness for Pierce Brosnan's Bond, too.
Who is your fictional female assassin? Natasha Romanoff ♥
Who is your captain of the Enterprise? Picard. (Though Sulu's brief acting captaincy in STID was a pretty freakin' awesome cameo in the Captain role.)