Tags: internet

in motion

for all you internet people who can't get enough kittens

My son loves this webpage.  He makes me go there, then holds my hands so I can't click the mouse to leave when the song is over.  He sings the song all day long and even sings himself to sleep with it, doing an eerily spot-on imitation of the kitten's voice, including the brief pause at the end and then sudden renewal of the song from the top. 

His latest thing is wanting me to include little notes in his lunchbox at school.  I've been printing out frames of the kitten picture with a line of lyrics underneath.  Today was his favorite line: "you lovely lovely dream".
in motion

kids need books

I'm just going to quote this straight from Colleen Mondor's blog:

I've recently been in touch with a New Orleans group, Books2Prisoners. They have been delivering books to prisoners in the area for some time and have now started to gather books for the juvenile detention centers as well. It's all slow going, as you can imagine, and yes - every book they had stored was destroyed back in Katrina.

They are looking for books from the middle grade reading level and up, primarily dealing with multi-cultural themes and characters. As many of you kid lit reviewers know, it isn't easy to find juvenile or YA books that have African American characters. Nik is more than happy to take any book - the group will sort through them and deliver those books to the kids that they think will work best and donate the rest to other area groups (libraries, etc.) in need of reading material.

In other words, there are certain books they are looking for but they are so desperate they will take whatever you've got.

I wanted to ask the Sci Fi and Fantasy reviewers in particular to dig deep on this effort - I think SFF titles are often overlooked for teen readers but can resonate the deepest, as many fans of the genre will attest. Ethnic issues are dealt with differently in SFF titles (when you are dealing with aliens or faeries, humans are just one more part of the mix, not the whole deal), and because of that, it is often SFF authors that children will remember the deepest and return to throughout their lives.

Please understand that this is not a momentary thing we are doing - these kids are in serious trouble and if the one thing we can do for them that might make a positive difference is send some books, then you can bet we need to keep doing it for months and months and years and years to come.

We need to send them books and we need to keep on sending.

Here's the mailing address:

Books 2 Prisoners
831 Elysian Fields #143
New Orleans, LA 70117

ATTN: Nik Bose

And Nik has asked that you please send a brief email and give them a heads-up that books are on the way. As they receive their packages at a box, they don't want them to stack up and will make sure someone checks often when they know something is coming. The email address is twista@riseup.net.

Also, I am putting together a wishlist at Powells Books for the group for those folks who want to send something but do not have the piles of ARCs that some of the rest of us have. Any recommendations for multi-cultural titles will be heartily accepted. I'm also looking for good SFF and mysteries to add. I thought I would put it up at Powells so folks could buy used copies, and thus spend a little more (grin).

Go get the full story and details here at Chasing Ray

I agree with everything she says about the value of fiction, but I'll add that you can also send non-fiction books that might help someone educate themselves in an area of interest.  When I worked within the juvie system, a big problem for many of the kids there was that they felt they lacked any practical skills, knowledge or tools to help them figure out something to do with their lives.  A book isn't going to change all that, but every now and then, one can be a start.
in motion

words and sound

It sometimes seems like John Scalzi can write a novel in the time it takes me to read one.  This theory was put to the test when he asked me to read and record a chapter of his latest project: "The Sagan Diary".  It's a novella written as the transcribed thoughts of Jane Sagan, my favorite character from his terrific series beginning with Old Man's War, continued in The Ghost Brigades and the soon-to-be-published The Last Colony.  The Sagan Diary is something of a stylistic departure for Scalzi, more poetic than his usual prose, a musing kind of stream-of-consciousness.  It flowed like a dream and was tremendously fun to read.

Scalzi asked me to read my chapter in December; I got it back to him at the end of January.  And I'll bet you that in the intervening weeks, the bastard cranked out another excellent novel or two.

Go here for all the info, as well as audio chapters you can download!

Also lending their lovely voices to this are Elizabeth Bear, Mary Robinette Kowal, Ellen Kushner, Cherie Priest and Helen Smith.
in motion

various and sundry

  • Brass Goggles collects beautiful steampunk creations.  I covet them all, most recently the Opti-Transcripticon.
Now, isn’t the above a perfectly lovely looking grimoire?  With that metal latch and embossed gold pattern, down to the little brass corners, it looks like its a book that has some really important things in it - well, much to many people’s surprise I’m sure - its actually a modded flatbed scanner!
Yummy.  Follow through on the link to other projects at Datamancer.net.  (More covet: teknogrimoire.) 
  • Time-lapse Picassos are fascinating.  Picasso always gets referred to as an example of "first know the formal rules, then break them", but these videos show that concept in action.  Classical art right up through the late stages, when it mutates into something unexpected.
After the first experiment, mirrors were no longer necessary to fool the young birds. Other young birds learned to mob the milk can by simply watching the birds that had been fooled with mirrors.

there is a place if you want to proceed
you could encounter a person that will adore you
then you proceed and you are on your feet by yourself
you return to your residence
and you whimper and you wish to cease to exist
What's yours?