Further sighing about children's books.

Saturday, May 27th, 2017 11:42 am
gaudior: (Default)
[personal profile] gaudior
Okay, this one I'm not even torn about, I'm just mad.

Munch, by Matthew Van Fleet, is a cute, funny board book with a simple premise: animals have mouths, and do different things with them!

For the most part, these things are value neutral. The mouths nibble, laugh, sing, etc.

For the most part, the animals are animals-- human sorts of facial expressions, but no clothing or other identifying markers, including any signs of gender.

Except for the hippo, who is wearing a pink-and-red bow. What does she do with her mouth? "Some mouths don't know when to shut-- blah, blah, blah, blah, blah!"


Why is patriarchy so fucking insidious and omnipresent? How am I supposed to protect my child from this when it's bloody everywhere?

I'm not supposed to protect my child from this; I'm supposed to give them tools so they can recognize it and fight it on their own.


For the moment, at least, my mom suggested, and [personal profile] sovay concurred, that a little judicious application of white-out and a grey marker should fix the problem. Fox can recognize and fight sexism on their own when they can, you know, talk.



Fireworks on Monday

Friday, May 26th, 2017 06:20 pm
pru: (fireworks)
[personal profile] pru posting in [community profile] davis_square
 There will be fireworks on Monday, according to the City's newsletter:
NEW! Memorial on the Mystic: Concert and Fireworks Tribute
Monday, May 29, 7:30 p.m., Baxter Park, Assembly Row
This performance capstones Memorial Week with a musical performance that illustrates the true meaning of Memorial Day, and provides a message of hope for our country as we honor those brave men and women who paid the ultimate price for freedom. The evening ceremony will combine the talents of the Metropolitan Wind Symphony, vocal ensemble N ’Harmony, and special performances by the Somerville All-City Chorus and the Somerville High School Chorus.
The highlight of the evening will be a stunning fireworks display over the Mystic River honoring the service and sacrifice of all who serve and have served our Nation. Special thanks to our event sponsors Federal Realty Investment Trust, and Wynn Resorts/Wynn Boston Harbor.

note the fine print that Wynn is paying for the fireworks. How interesting. 


(no subject)

Friday, May 26th, 2017 01:00 pm
batyatoon: (golden teeth and golden tones)
[personal profile] batyatoon
"Iiiit's that time again!"

"Time to wear the lilac?"

"Time to steal the Death Star plans?"

"Nooooo. It's time for another New York / New Jersey area housefilk!"

Next Sunday afternoon, June 4, from 12 to 4 pm.
Aaron Davies will be our host.

The address is: 100 Christopher Columbus Dr., Jersey City, NJ 07302 (right next to the Grove St. PATH Station; exit from the middle of the platform and go up the escalator).

Once in the building, take the elevator to the seventh floor and go through the door between the two pairs of elevators; turn right and the room is on your right, just past the kitchen.

RSVP by emailing adavies42(at)me(dot)com. Feel free to boost the signal!

bfresh is now open until 11 pm every day

Friday, May 26th, 2017 11:52 am
[personal profile] ron_newman posting in [community profile] davis_square
instead of 10 pm. A sign inside says this is because they "listened" to customer demand.
mem_winterhill: (Default)
[personal profile] mem_winterhill posting in [community profile] davis_square
Solarize Somerville goal metHey neighbors--

Our successful Solarize Somerville program has one more thing to wrap up. Because we hit our goal, we are going to be able to get a solar array donated to an eligible non-profit in the 'Ville.

There are some criteria to meet--you have to own the roof (we don't want some landlord to get the benefit of this, unless that non-profit is the landlord), you have to have the space and the orientation towards the sun, suitable roof condition, stuff like that. But if you know of a local organization that might meet this--tell them to submit their interest at the web form that can be found in the press release:


And please share this around your networks so that we can be sure as many people as possible hear about this.

Just so there's also a link here, let me quote from the release:
For eligibility requirements and to nominate a local nonprofit or house of worship, visit www.somervillema.gov/5kw. The online application will be available until Friday, June 30, 2017.

(no subject)

Wednesday, May 24th, 2017 08:32 pm
skygiants: Moril from the Dalemark Quartet playing the cwidder (composing hallelujah)
[personal profile] skygiants
I have spent the last five days rereading through Megan Whalen Turner's Queen's Thief books at the rate of one a day, and doing very little else!

If you've missed them, the long arc of the Queen's Thief series features the three warring alt!Grecian kingdoms of Sounis, Eddis and Attolia getting their act together to avoid being absorbed by an alt!Babylonian empire. The books are heavy on well-researched worldbuilding, political complexity, and third-act twists; they are light on divine influence, though the gods do have a plan and they would rather like the protagonists to stop whining about it. Books include:

The Thief: A magus, his two apprentices, a soldier and a thief go on a life-changing field trip to steal a divine king-making relic, and Megan Whalen Turner shows off her unreliable first-person narration.

The Queen of Attolia: All three kingdoms start a slapfight with each other while the series protagonist sulks in his room, except when he's stealing important political figures from other kingdoms. Megan Whalen Turner would like you to know she can dance deftly around significant information just as easily in omniscient third as she can in first.

The King of Attolia: A sweet, honest guardsman punches his king in the face, and proceeds to regret every single one of his life choices. Megan Whalen Turner's like "look, this time I'm using limited third and telling you EXACTLY what my protagonist thinks and believes at any given time, it's not MY fault he only knows like 20% of what's actually going on."

A Conspiracy of Kings: The heir to the kingdom of Sounis is like "I COULD sort out this civil war by becoming king OR I could do hard labor for the rest of my life and honestly the latter sounds more appealing?" Megan Whalen Turner returns to first person but is too busy examining questions of ethics around violence in the political sphere to put all that much effort into setting up twists.

This is the part that's spoilery for the first four books )

Anyway, yesterday I finally got to the point where I could read the just-published new book, Thick as Thieves. So this is the part that's spoilery for Thick as Thieves. )

maybe not a bullet journal but it's a start

Wednesday, May 24th, 2017 04:26 pm
silveraspen: silver trees against a blue sky background (Default)
[personal profile] silveraspen
So. Yeah. It's been a while, huh?

I won't spend a lot of time on the what or the why or the ugh of the world right now that's been a bit of a barrier in multiple ways. Suffice to say that I've played a lot of video games, I've done a lot of thinking, and I'm determined to express more of that in writing than I have been.

Only not right now, because I'm in transit. Still, any start is better than no start at all, right?


Anyway. Hi, everyone. ♥ to you.

Elm St Pedestrian Concept

Wednesday, May 24th, 2017 01:21 pm
[personal profile] skyyy posting in [community profile] davis_square
What are your thoughts on this sketch of what Davis would look like with Elm St turned into a pedestrian-only area?

Deliveries could drive through during off peak hours. Buses would get a huge boost with the bus lane and better symmetry and turnarounds.

I'd especially like feedback on bikability. I didn't manage to fit bike lanes in anywhere, and we'd lose the door zone lane on Highland, but that'd be made up for by having a smaller slower intersection. Perhaps bikes could also share the bus lane? Would a 2-way cycletrack through the pedestrian area be too disruptive?

I'm also discussing it on twitter: https://twitter.com/skyqrose/status/867314846957801472

Fire at Redbones

Wednesday, May 24th, 2017 07:03 am
pru: (Default)
[personal profile] pru posting in [community profile] davis_square
 I originally saw this on their facebook page yesterday. 

The Globe article is linked here, but is not particularly explanatory so if you don't subscribe, don't bother. 

Specifically, they hope to re-open Friday and are rescheduling the Pig Roast and Cider Tasting that was scheduled for this week. 

fundraiser for moving to Canada

Tuesday, May 23rd, 2017 10:48 pm
thewickedlady: ([Milliways - Fleur] got a light?)
[personal profile] thewickedlady
Hey dudes.

As you know, I am moving to Canada and going to back to school. It's terrifying and exciting! I've managed to put together myself between savings and loans all the money for tuition and support money that Canada asks you to keep aside to take care of yourself during your studies.

However, with the political climate, and the threatened changes to NAFTA, it has become extremely difficult and expensive to move across the border.

I feel strange asking this, but if anyone would like to help with a fundraiser to help off set the costs of my move, you can do so here.

Many of you have already been kind enough to give, and I have been so grateful.

Please, do not feel obligated in any way. I know times are tough for people. Trust me, I know.

People have asked if they can share. I feel a little strange about it, as well as guilty, but if you would like to, you are welcome to do so.

Thank you for taking the time to read. I love you all, very much. Please enjoy this link to the kitten live stream.

I spy with my little eye

Tuesday, May 23rd, 2017 08:40 pm
mem_winterhill: (Default)
[personal profile] mem_winterhill posting in [community profile] davis_square
Something that looks like kayaks and paddleboards at the Blessing of the Bay boathouse. I have begged for years for them to rent more that those huge canoes, and it looks like it's gonna happen.

I haven't seen anything about this program, but I found this page that suggests there will be rental days. https://www.somervillerec.com/info/facilities/details.aspx?FacilityID=14318

Photos below the dw cut (if I can figure out how)....
Read more... )

(no subject)

Sunday, May 21st, 2017 08:42 am
skygiants: Jadzia Dax lounging expansively by a big space window (daxanova)
[personal profile] skygiants
Having temporarily taken a break from lengthy space operas about terrible wars within ongoing franchises after finishing DS9, [personal profile] innerbrat and I have now started watching through Star Wars: The Clone Wars. I'm going to try to stop to write up about every ten episodes for anyone who is interested in following along on this moderately lengthy journey.

For the record, going in, here is my knowledge of The Clone Wars as picked up via tumblr osmosis:
- there are clones
- Anakin has an apprentice named Ahsoka and we all love her
- Obi-Wan might have a romance with a planetary leader because that's just what Jedi do, apparently
- there is a Complicated and Tragic plot about Ahsoka's ruined relationship with the Jedi order that allows her to survive to appear in Star Wars: Rebels

That's it! That's all I know. Other than what happens in these first ten episodes of Season 1 )


Friday, May 19th, 2017 07:12 am
gaudior: (Default)
[personal profile] gaudior
So, who else spent yesterday constantly refreshing Twitter and the Associated Press with a mix of excitement and dread?

Mostly excitement, for me-- I mean, I have spent the last three decades hearing that the American government is based on "a series of checks and balances" to keep things from ever getting too dire. They are very dire now indeed, but if those checks are starting to get their balancing on, that would be pretty great.

Otherwise, I get to come to terms with the notion that the entire country is run primarily by racist, sexist oligarchs who would do anything to preserve their power, and that only outright revolution will actually stop them.

It's just... I cannot get used to how many different genres the next few years could be. And how rapidly it goes back and forth, which one is most likely.

I like the one where this is all the lead-up to the rise of the diverse and rainbow-strewn socialist utopia, but while I'll keep working for that one, I'm not holding my breath.


Reading: Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America, Ibram X. Kendi

(no subject)

Thursday, May 18th, 2017 08:43 pm
skygiants: Tory from Battlestar Galactica; text "I can't get no relief" (tory got shafted)
[personal profile] skygiants
Lara Elena Donnelly's Amberlough is being marketed as "John Le Carré meets Cabaret." This is largely accurate. I also saw someone mention Ellen Kushner's The Fall of Kings, which may also be accurate, but I haven't read Fall of Kings so I couldn't really say; however, I definitely did get some strong Swordspoint vibes.

The titular Amberlough is a secondary-world city (though not actually a fantastical one; there's no magic, as far as I can tell) heavily influenced by Weimar Berlin, full of corruption and cross-dressing and decadent clubs. While the nationalist/fascist One State Party is starting to gain in prominence in various regions of the country, nobody expects it to have a chance in Amberlough.

Protagonist A is Cyril DePaul, an intelligence agent who is not at all eager to re-enter the field after a previous traumatic experience; Protagonist B is Aristide Makricosta, a wildly fabulous cabaret emcee who moonlights as a key figure in a major smuggling operation. Cyril and Aristide are having a very comfortable time pretending that they are only banging so they can spy on each other, when in fact everyone is perfectly aware that they are only investigating each other so that they can bang. Protagonist C is Cordelia Lehane, Aristide's stage partner at the cabaret, who has numerous other personal business of her own but gets pulled into their storyline when Cyril finds himself in need of a beard.

The plot kicks off when Cyril gets yanked away from his moderate idyll with Aristide to go back out into the field on an undercover mission. In theory he is meant to be preventing an illicit takeover in the national elections by the One Sate Party. In practice -- well, I mean. Le Carre, Cabaret. I will leave it to you all to do the math.

This should probably be enough information that you'll be able to get a sense if this is the sort of thing you want (and feel able) to read or not. Personally, I'm more of a Privilege of the Sword person than Swordspoint; I was most interested in Cordelia, the only protagonist who at any point can really be said to take a stand for something more than [themselves+1]. That said, I will definitely be reading the next book.

Moving to UNB

Thursday, May 18th, 2017 06:09 pm
thewickedlady: (Default)
[personal profile] thewickedlady
I'm moving to Canada!!

Omg, why is it so hard to move to Canada?!

As I have discovered, while calling every moving company between here, Montreal, and New Brunswick, that the Dear Leader has pissed off the Canadians with all of his railing on NAFTA, and it is now super hard to get your stuff across the border. Because hardly any moving companies are now paying the cost to be 'bonded' to move across the border. The ones that are, hardly any of them go to the tiny province I'm moving to. And of the two that would go there, only was available. ONE.

You can guess how expensive that quote was. ;_; I don't think my stuff is worth that much.

I managed to find one of those fill up & ship pod-like services, but NONE of them deliver to the New Brunswick province. As I am learning, trying to do anything outside the big, main provinces is hard! I could get it into Quebec City or Montreal, but I haven't been able to find any movers that could then take it to New Brunswick. Not a question of cost: I can't find anyone to do it. July is apparently their crazy month, and they are already filled up.

I'm at the point of either going entirely over budget on move to get it across border, or doing what I was trying to do and getting a u-haul.

I'm just old and also, I can't do it by myself. It's the 4th of July weekend. Everyone's busy. Shit.

I'm also running into problems with student visa: will I have it by then and can I get into Canada with it then? I wasn't planning on doing that! I didn't think I needed to use my student visa to move my stuff across then. But because of Trump and his poking at NAFTA, Canada is now extremely strict on rules when before they weren't. I'm talking with uni now to see what are my options because I'm in the process of getting my visa. I don't know if I will get it by the start of July, and if so, can I even use it that early? Classes don't start until Sept.

I haven't wanted to get myself across my student visa check the first time at a land crossing: they are supposed to be harder. Ug! I had a plan! UUUUUUG!

I had done all my stuff back in Feb. Damn all the transcript hell. I could have planned this ages ago!
mama_bunny72: (Default)
[personal profile] mama_bunny72 posting in [community profile] davis_square
^ Asking for a neighbor who is not on Davis Sq DW. Please contact me if you have a slide projector to loan. Thanks!

(no subject)

Tuesday, May 16th, 2017 08:53 pm
skygiants: Sokka from Avatar: the Last Airbender peers through an eyeglass (*peers*)
[personal profile] skygiants
A few months back, I discovered this in a used bookstore and ended up taking it home:

And this week seemed like a good time to experience the Cold War's Special Baseball Episode, so here we are.

A Pennant for the Kremlin is an extremely serious alternate history (written in 1964) in which an American millionaire decides to leave all his assets to the Soviet Union in an effort to cultivate world peace before unexpectedly keeling over dead. His assets include about ten major hotels, plus the Chicago White Sox.

The Soviets generously decide to give the hotels to the workers!, but decide to hang onto the White Sox for reasons of plot necessity, and send over a couple of Russians out of Central Casting to take over the management:

1) the malevolent career bureaucrat who sees everything as an Insult to the Party!
2) the sweet, gently comical one whose Job Is To Understand Baseball and, by taking his job very seriously, learns to love the sport for its own sake! AND IS BELOVED BY IT IN RETURN
3) the sweet one's beautiful daughter, who's just excited for the opportunity to go shopping for pretty dresses!

The sweet one bonds with the team's manager and flirts with the eccentric millionaire's spinster secretary; the beautiful daughter falls for the wildly anti-Communist baseball player, who Learns an Important Lesson that Soviets Are People Too (or at least attractive young Soviet women with a maximum of wide-eyed innocence and a minimum of Party ideals); and the malevolent one attempts various schemes For The Greater Glory Of The Soviet Union, much to the chagrin of our aw-shucks all-American baseball players, who just want the opportunity to chuck a good old American baseball without being buffeted by copies of the Daily Worker. The spinster secretary trips all around Chicago asking innocently for portraits of Lenin in order to make her new guests feel at home; the sweet Russian becomes an unexpectedly popular national celebrity when he gives all the players incentive bonuses, but forbids them from using their images to shill for Big Tobacco - think of the children! they should be ashamed of themselves! At one point, the Soviet agenda at a U.N. meeting is completely derailed while every representative takes their turn to wax rhapsodic about the signature sport of their home country. Baseball: it's transformative!

In the end, tragically, does anyone care about spoilers for this book? )

Public forum on gas leaks

Tuesday, May 16th, 2017 09:06 pm
mem_winterhill: (Default)
[personal profile] mem_winterhill posting in [community profile] davis_square
At the Ward 5 Resistat this evening, I was reminded of an upcoming event by the Mothers Out Front representative. They are concerned with gas leaks from aging pipes throughout our city. These have been mapped and tagged, but there's a lot more to be done to get them fixed.

These gas leaks are even enough to be registered on our city's greenhouse gas assessment as something that should be reduced as we aim for carbon neutral city status. 

MOF are hosting a public forum on Saturday on this issue:  Facebook details

Non-facebook details: https://mothersoutfrontsomerville.nationbuilder.com/

Quick summary info: 
On SATURDAY, MAY 20th at 2 p.m. at the East Somerville Community School we will hold a public forum on gas leaks with Somerville state rep Christine Barber (sponsor of key upcoming gas leaks legislation), other elected officials and experts and representatives from National Grid and Eversource.
[personal profile] lancedavisward6 posting in [community profile] davis_square
Public Meeting Wednesday, May 17 6:00 Kennedy School Library regarding the Summer St/Shaft Site Development:

(Don't know how to do a cut here... sorry)
RTNs 3-33735 AND 3-34098

A release of oil and/or hazardous materials has occurred at this location, which is a disposal site as defined by M.G.L. c. 21E, §2 and the Massachusetts Contingency Plan, 310 CMR 40.0000. On March 8, 2017, 351 Summer LLC received a petition from residents in Somerville requesting public involvement in any Immediate Response Actions and/or Release Abatement Measures taking place at this disposal site, in accordance with M.G.L. c. 21E §14(a) and 310 CMR 40.1403(9). As a result, a public meeting will be held in the 3rd Floor Library at the John F. Kennedy School, 5 Cherry Street, Somerville, MA at 6:00 p.m. on Wednesday, May 17, 2017 to present information on completed Immediate Response Actions and planned Release Abatement Measures and solicit public comment on same.

Any questions regarding this meeting should be directed to Robert H. Bird, LSP, EnviroTrac Ltd., 2 Merchant Street, Suite 2, Sharon, MA 02067, (781) 793-0074.

The disposal site file can be viewed at the MassDEP website using Release Tracking Numbers (RTNs) 3-33735 and 3-34098 at http://public.dep.state.ma.us/SearchableSites2/Search.aspx or at the MassDEP Northeast Regional Office, 205B Lowell Street,Wilmington, MA 01887. A public information repository has been established at the Somerville Central Library, 79 Highland Avenue, Somerville, MA 02143.

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