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Take a trip into the stratosphere on one of NOAA’s weather balloons. It rises 21 miles into the sky collecting data before bursting and falling back to Earth.
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For more than a century, the huddle has been one of the most defining fixtures of American football. But in today’s N.F.L., it’s slowly disappearing.

New Fic!

Oct. 22nd, 2017 10:54 am
vaznetti: (crossovers! yay!)
[personal profile] vaznetti
SO here i am, posting new fic for the first time in years. I had an excellent [community profile] crossovering exchange. I wrote TWO stories, and I received something really amazing in return. First, my gift:

a wolf age ere the world falls (10031 words) by wnnbdarklord
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: The Avengers (Marvel Movies), A Song of Ice and Fire - George R. R. Martin
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: Graphic Depictions Of Violence
Characters: Tony Stark, Steve Rogers, Thor (Marvel), Bran Stark, Ned Stark, Lyanna Stark, Sansa Stark, Arya Stark, Natasha Romanov (Marvel), Background & Cameo Characters
Additional Tags: Crossover, Alternate Universe - Canon Divergence, Infinity Gems, Memory Alteration, Memory Loss, Time Skips, Background Character Death, Canonical Character Death, references to canon typical violence and sexual assault
The boy in the weirwood dreams of another world, where heroes exist that can help save them all. He reaches through and pulls. Blue light fills him as the universe tears apart. The world changes.


An MCU/ASoIaF crossover where the Avengers are pulled into Westeros to help with their White Walker problem. Except they get overshot and get sent farther back than intended. What else is Tony Stark going to do but build his way out?

I have wanted some version of this crossover for years, and this was wonderful beyond my wildest dreams. Everyone in it is perfect, especially Tony, but really, everyone. It is perfect!

Meanwhile, I wrote a SPN/SW story as my assignment, which was a lot of fun, but also challenging because I've never written SW (barring some 30-year old Mary Sue drawerfic) and it's been a long time since I've written SPN, and I really didn't want this to be like the last time I wrote Winchesters in Space. Also, it took me an embarrassingly long time to realize that in this universe Sam and Dean would name their spaceship Meatloaf's Bat Out of Hell.

Paved with Bad Intentions (The Road out of Hell) (7815 words) by Vaznetti
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Star Wars Original Trilogy, Supernatural
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Characters: Sam Winchester, Han Solo, Dean Winchester, Chewbacca (Star Wars)
Additional Tags: Crossover, Action/Adventure, Pre-Star Wars: A New Hope, SPN S3
Summary: Sam finds a way to save Dean from Hell; it involves sending them both to a galaxy far far away. Set in SPN Season 3, and some time before ANH.

I also wrote a very last-minute treat crossing over Game of Thrones and the Vorkosigan books, which in the way of last-minute treats was very well received, and now I might have to write more of it.

Winterfell Tales (2615 words) by Vaznetti
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Game of Thrones (TV), Vorkosigan Saga - Lois McMaster Bujold
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Ekaterin Vorsoisson Vorkosigan/Miles Vorkosigan
Characters: Miles Vorkosigan, Ekaterin Vorsoisson Vorkosigan, Sansa Stark, Armsman Roic, Tyrion Lannister
Additional Tags: Crossover, crossovering treat, Game of Thrones spoilers
Summary: It's like something out of an old story, Miles thinks: a Betan's idea of what Barrayar was like.

I catch a spell on you

Oct. 22nd, 2017 05:22 am
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Posted by <a rel="author" href="/users/AmyYma2770/pseuds/AmyYma2770">AmyYma2770</a>


The Sinnerman is outside
The Detective is outside, with his Liutenant
Lucifer is babysitting Trixie
Or is Trixie ruling Lucifer?

Words: 1338, Chapters: 1/1, Language: English

Series: Part 6 of Non conventional people

Getting Things Done

Oct. 22nd, 2017 09:00 am
[syndicated profile] cooltools_feed

Getting Things Done is a thoroughly practical method of handling the little things that over time comprise the big things in life. I’ve been chronically disorganized as long as I can remember. Within a month of following Allen’s advice – actually, within a few weeks – I was making better use of my day, getting far more done, and feeling happier and less anxious.

Allen’s not-so-hidden agenda in getting people organized is not simply to turn us into highly efficient bureaucrats. With a clearer mind, we can focus on our meaningful, long-term goals in a more creative way. I’m not sure if I’ve achieved Allen’s favorite state of “mind like water,” but I’m feeling a lot more fluid nowadays. This book is full of tricks to help you get things done, but it also offers an underlying challenge: Just what is it that you want to do?

— Marcel Levy

This is the third recommendation I’ve received for this book. It’s pretty good. On the blogs there is a lot of chatter about Allen’s system and its effectiveness for nerdlike people. I would have posted a review of the book earlier if I had actually practiced what it preached.

— KK

Here’s the gist of GTD in a single image. I have kept a printed copy of this for years and find it useful.

— MF

Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity
David Allen
2001, 267 pages

Sample excerpts:

Why Things Are On Your Mind
Most often, the reason something is “on your mind” is that you want it to be different than it currently is, and yet:

* you haven’t clarified exactly what the intended outcome is;
* you haven’t decided what the very next physical action step is; and/or
* you haven’t put reminders of the outcome and the action required in a system you trust


Things rarely get stuck because of lack of time. They get stuck because the doing of them has not been defined.


Give yourself permission to capture and express any idea, and then later on figure out how it fits in and what to do with it. If nothing else (and there is plenty of “else”), this practice adds to your efficiency – when you have the idea, you grab it, which means you won’t have to go “have the idea” again.


In mind-mapping, the core idea is presented in the center, with associated ideas growing out in a somewhat free-form fashion around it.


The big problem is that your mind keeps reminding you of things when you can’t do anything about them. It has no sense of past or future.


Most people don’t have a really complete system, and they get no real payoff from reviewing things for just that reason; their overview isn’t total. They still have a vague sense that something may be missing. That’s why the rewards to be gained from implementing this whole process are at least geometric: the more complete the system is, the more you’ll trust it. And the more you trust it, the more complete you’ll be motivated to keep it. The Weekly Review is a master key to maintaining that standard.

Scotch Tear-by-Hand Packaging Tape

Oct. 22nd, 2017 08:59 am
[syndicated profile] cooltools_feed

Posted by mark

My family ships a lot of boxes during the holidays, and we go through a few rolls of packaging tape. Large pistol-grip tape dispensers don’t work well on smaller boxes — I have never been able to get the hang of using the serrated blade to cut off the tape.

I was happy to find out about Scotch’s Tear-by-Hand packaging tape. I (and more importantly, my wife) can easily tear off strips with our hands. It’s easy to get the length you desire, and the tear is perfectly perpendicular. Also, it’s easy to find the end of the tape on the roll by running your fingernail along it. This stuff is like magic. I never want to use any other kind of packaging tape.

-- Mark Frauenfelder

[This is a Cool Tools Favorite from 2014]

Scotch Tear-by-Hand Tape, 1.88 Inches x 50 Yards, 2-pack ($10)

Available from Amazon

Ever-fixed mark (Part 3)

Oct. 22nd, 2017 10:44 am
the_comfortable_courtesan: image of a fan c. 1810 (Default)
[personal profile] the_comfortable_courtesan

Next morning Hannah went into the hothouses to cut some flowers to replace a bloom here and there in the vases that went droop, and discovered her brother Julius about some matter of tending pots.

He smiled at her. What, not up and about with Miss Flora?

I daresay she sleeps in, to recover from her journey.

Indeed the Channel crossing will knock one up! But – he turned around with a serious expression upon his face – has she said aught about Beauf – Sallington’s – suit to her?

Not yet.

Only – he sighed – there is some notion of the Duke’s that Beauf might set up his own establishment at Nitherholme, and he was saying, did he do so, might I not go with him and do somewhat about the gardens, that were never particular tended to, save for the herb garden when Lady Jane resided there, and have been much neglected since then, one could have a free hand in doing the thing, 'tis not like Qualling or the grounds of Mulcaster House, so there would not be established gardeners jealous of their place and saying, has always been done thus and so –

Oh, Julius, surely you would love that!

Also, Julius went on with a longing look, 'tis moorland country thereabouts, and I confide would be an almost untrodden field for the botanist –

Sure all sounds entire ideal –

- but one must suppose that his plans would be different did he intend to go marry.

One had to know Julius extreme well to know that he was most extreme concerned about this matter. Indeed it would be a considerable advancement for him, and Hannah knew how great a friendship there had ever been 'twixt him and Lord Sallington. Certainly he might fear that marriage would cause a breach – but was it Flora, that had been part of the same nursery-set? how could that create a gulph?

And then she looked at her brother and wondered. Had she not had particular opportunity to observe the very fine manly affection that existed 'twixt His Lordship and Mr MacDonald?

Why, she said, I daresay Flora will tell me soon enough.

In the afternoon she climbed once more to their meeting place, where Flora was already sitting, clasping her arms about her knees in her old way. Hannah went to squeeze in beside her.

Dearest Hannah Clorinda, said Flora, sure there is a thing I am almost frighted to ask you: but has there been with you any matter of falling in love?

Hannah laughed. Fie, who should I go fall in love with?

Why, how should I know, being away so long?

Hannah looked sideways at Flora. Well, she said, resisting the desire to teaze, I will confess that I have the greatest admiration and, 'tis true to say, affection, towards His Lordship and Mr MacDonald, that are both always so very kind to me. But they are quite out of my sphere, and naught that I would go pine for – and indeed, sure I take the entire apprehension that 'twould be a very foolish thing to set my girlish hopes upon 'em.

You were ever a sensible creature, sighed Flora. For I find myself – found myself, mayhap I will discover that matters are different when we are no longer under the Italian sun, or strolling in balmy moonlight and a little smoky glow from the burning mountain – somewhat unexpected smitten.

She sighed once more. We encountered Quintus and his friends in Venice and it perchanced I saw a good deal of Beauf, and then we went our ways, and then we met once more in Naples, and I found myself in a considerable liking to him, and indeed he to me, and there was a mention of marriage, but I said that perchance we were beguiled by the exceeding romantic setting –

- but 'twas not just that concern that halted me from saying yes to his offer.

She looked down at her hands pressing together. O, dear, Hannah, I like him most extremely, but I greatly dislike the thought of being a duchess. For one sees his stepmother, a most excellent learned lady, that I daresay would greatly prefer to spend a deal more time in her study than her duties of rank permit, and does not complain, but will sometimes let little things drop – will come in from some occasion and say she has been about duchessing, with a twist of her mouth.

And then, my dearest Tiger - she looked sideways at Hannah, who kept her face entirely straight – why, what may I call her? She would not have me call her mama, says 'tis a title she would not steal from Mama, so 'tis a pet name ‘twixt the two of us. But she says, that one should ever think when contemplating marriage that the duties of marriage will include matters to do with one’s husband’s station or profession, if only by behaving proper to that – that is, does one marry a clergyman there is a deal of proper behaviour expected in the matter of church attendance and parish duties &C, almost to act the ancillary curate, and if one marries a doctor one does not gossip upon his patients any more than he would, and must not complain is he called out at all hours to some urgent case.

She leant her head upon Hannah’s shoulder. And said, sure one may see married couples that are entire partners, like unto Mama and Papa, or the Wallaces, or the Samuels, or as 'twas with the Verikers – oh, that was sad news – but indeed, she says, a woman does not always realize in advance what will come to her, but must adapt to circumstances.

And however fond and kind a husband may be, 'tis quite out of the common that he will go encourage her ambitions as Mr Lucas does, that insists that Mrs Lucas has her own study in the rectory. That she confides he would do even was there not the matter of her fortune in the balance.

She fell silent.

Also, she said at length, I like Beauf most extremely, but I have found that I am also given to finding other fellows agreeable, if only for a while. I daresay, she went on, you have read, or mayhap heard, the marriage service? That I confide is not in particular different among Methodists from what pertains in the Established Church – sure one hears that the Quakers do the matter differently –

Dearest Flora, 'tis unlike you to babble.

- and while there is a deal of matter in’t that one could mostly happily swear to, there are some things… even more than the forsaking all others, there is that dread word obey. And Tiger says I should mind what a deal of rights the law and custom assign to husbands, and how little to wives. Sure, she said, a woman – or her prudent advisors – may tie up any fortune she has, but there has to be that forethought took, and even then, there are husbands will endeavour come around their wives by persuasion or even violence.

Hannah sighed. Indeed 'tis so.

But the thing that I always come at, Flora continued, squeezing Hannah, is that I would not wish to be parted from you. And sure I find it hard to come at any way one might marry and still have one’s dearest friend about one. I suppose you might come be my companion, but – she planted a kiss upon Hannah’s head – I should dislike to put you in that position of dependency -

Oh, she cried, but I am a selfish fool! Doubtless you have your own plans and ambitions –

Why, said Hannah, I confide that although I lead a most exceeding pleasant existence here, undertaking the flowers for the house and tending to the library, 'tis not a course I may continue entirely indefinitely. And latterly I was discoursing of the matter to Mr MacDonald, and he advanced the thought that I might go make a living by my pen -

Why, my darling, indeed you might. For Mr MacDonald had most thoughtful laid by for us copies of The Intelligencer, marked up with matters of particular interest, and Tiger was most prepossessed by those pieces of yours on historical ladies.

Hannah felt herself blushing all over. But sure I did not see quite how I might come at that.

Flora clasped her knees again and rocked a little in the old wonted fashion when she was thinking something over.

At length she said, hesitantly, you know that Tiger has a fine property in Surrey -

O yes, Yeomans, 'twas where Mama met Papa –

Say you so! – 'twas let for many years to the Ulrichs, very fine people, some connexion of the Samuels, but at present stands empty, and she does not go seek new tenants until certain repairs and refurbishments are made. And it comes to me, might we not ask her could we go live there, and devote our lives to study and writing and doing somewhat about the parlous condition of womanhood - for I apprehend that 'tis not an entire out of the common thing, for two ladies to live together and pursue their interests, like Lady Emily Merrett and Miss Fenster at Attervale –

- but are they not somewhat older ladies, past their marriageable years?

O, now, but I have heard that Lady Emily was one of the belles of the Season when they first went there, her suitors were entire desolated.

O, said Hannah, longingly, surely that would be excellent fine, but I confide that there would be objections -

O, poo, to objections! said Flora. Do I go convoke with Tiger upon the business I daresay she will come at some way it might be contrived.

Hannah clutched Flora’s hand. O, Flora! I should like it of all things.


Oct. 22nd, 2017 05:24 am
dglenn: Me in kilt and poofy shirt, facing away, playing acoustic guitar behind head (cyhmn)
[personal profile] dglenn

"I know that there are people who think that this is odd.  They take their comfort other ways -- from liquor or from God.  Now sometimes prayer can call me or a drink helps get me through,  But nothing is so healing as the days I spend with you."   -- from "My Thousand Closest Friends" (1991) by Naomi Pardue

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Platforms like Facebook and Twitter offer up memes designed to feel real, if only for an instant — long enough for our minds to make a false connection.

Orthodoxy in Oxford

Oct. 22nd, 2017 08:55 am
naraht: Orthodox church in Romania (art-RomaniaPantocrator)
[personal profile] naraht
One of the things that I loved most about Russia was being able to pass any random church – usually a beautiful Baroque church – and know that it was an Orthodox church. And the fact that there was usually a service going on, which meant that I could go in, light a few candles and stand for a few minutes to enjoy the architecture and the singing before going on with my sightseeing. (There's no expectation that you'll arrive on time, or indeed stay till the end, as long as you know the points of the service during which you're not meant to leave.)

Back in Oxford, I'm really missing it. I would go to church much more if it could be this simple - if I could just pop in between the farmer's market and the cafe as part of my weekend routine. In the week and a half I was in Russia, I went to more church services than I've been to in years. (Not to mention wore a headscarf more than I ever have... it was a good chance to use all the scarves I have lying around.)

Really I shouldn't complain. I know there are places, like in the American South, where you have to drive for hours to get to an Orthodox church. I grew up in a town with one, and I've just discovered that we have four here in Oxford, not two as I'd originally thought.

• the Greek Orthodox/Russian Orthodox one, the oldest Orthodox church in Oxford and the home of Kallistos Ware, which is unfortunately a long walk from my house
• the other Russian Orthodox church (Patriarchate of Moscow), which is also a bit of a hike
• a Romanian Orthodox church
• an Indian Orthodox church (Malenkara Orthodox Syrian)

Whether or not I manage to get off my couch within the next half an hour to go to church this morning, I must definitely plan to visit the latter two sometime - particularly the last, as I've never been to an Oriental Orthodox church before. We shall see...

The Most Dangerous Man in the World

Oct. 22nd, 2017 03:15 am
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
A whole lot of "water is wet" observations, but I do admire the precision of analysis in listing specific actions of #45 and why they are troubling.
luzribeiro: (Default)
[personal profile] luzribeiro posting in [community profile] talkpolitics
Bernie Sanders will go to Puerto Rico instead of Women's Convention

But wait, let me get this straight, some crazy assholes gave him all kinds of shit for being *invited* to that thing (in place of women who rejected their own invitations)...

Now those same people are giving him shit for NOT going!?

Methinks some are just bitter hags taking out their own failures on somebody else.

Why should anyone be mad he isn't going to speak? He never should have been invited in the first place. Bernie folks seem to be all bent out of shape. Not speaking may be the smartest thing Bernie has actually done. I'm sure there are scads of brown Americans in Puerto Rico who would love to hear from the one of the whitest Senators in Congress all about the joys of single payer healthcare, evil billionaires, and free stuff.
lilacsigil: 12 Apostles rocks, text "Rock On" (12 Apostles)
[personal profile] lilacsigil
Title: Movement and Stillness

Characters/Pairing: Breq/Seivarden unrequited

Fandom/Universe: Imperial Radch

Rating and Content Notes: Teen

Word count: 1760

Notes: Thanks to [personal profile] st_aurafina 2017.

Summary: Seivarden feels like she is still in stasis while Breq rushes onward, but there are two sides to every coin.

Movement and Stillness )

Also at AO3

A slight delay

Oct. 22nd, 2017 08:56 am
lexigent: (Shx)
[personal profile] lexigent posting in [community profile] stageoffools
Hello all,

The deadline is now past. Thanks everyone who got their fics up! I am still waiting for a couple of people who have an extension until midnight tonight. As soon as everything is in, I will open Madness.

Avatar: Legend of Korra, s1

Oct. 22nd, 2017 10:26 am
extrapenguin: Photo of horse's head (Default)
[personal profile] extrapenguin
...I marathoned it yesterday. Oops?

In any case, well, I did not go in completely unspoiled (I knew how the love triangle would end, frex), and ended up skipping some bits because embarrassment squick, but I like Korra as a protagonist more than Aang, so. (Also she's not 12 and looks post-pubescent so I can buy her in romantic plotlines without going DO NOT WANT.)

Korra's brash and powerful and determined and hot-headed and very, very relateable. She also has some visible muscles and is in general an A+ character design. I went all starry-eyed from the moment I saw her in the firebending test being all competent-like. Also, nice hairdo.

Bolin, eh, I really wish he'd grow up beyond the comic relief guy. Mako's a bit better and I in general like the competence – and in fact, I like him as a character – but the whole love triangle bits were eye-roll worthy. Also, Zuko was hotter. (I don't mind the current ship configuration, I just ... don't necessarily ship it.) I like Asami, she's cool and competent and I love the "use their own tech against them" thing she's got going!

My most favoritest character, however, is Lin Bei Fong. She was just there at the start, but s1e6 (And the Winner Is...) featured a metalbending tour de force with the cables and Korra and ... drool. Everything after that has been so, so delightful and delicious. Metalbending on her uniform! Genuinely cares about her underlings! Willing to sacrifice herself!

Worldbuildingwise, I like that progress has happened. 1890s-to-WWI -analogous periods are much more interesting than the tech level of the original A:tLA. Steampunk!

The villain did have good points, which is what I want from a villain, ending spoilers )

most versatile!

Oct. 22nd, 2017 09:08 am

Le ragazze con l’ombrello

Oct. 22nd, 2017 06:56 am
[syndicated profile] dearmissfletcher_feed

Posted by Miss Fletcher

Loro sono due giovani donne, forse sono sorelle, mi sembra di notare una certa somiglianza nella forma dei loro visi e nella loro dolcezza. Ritratte nell’epoca per noi sconosciuta, immortalate dal talento di Adele Degiorgis che aveva il suo studio a Milano. Una donna fotografa, mestiere estroso ed affascinante il suo, provate a immaginare la […]


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