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moon_custafer

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January 17th, 2017

11:06 am: Knowing you probably suffer from imposter syndrome doesn't really help.
I mean, I can look back and reason that I've illustrated three books, spent three years as the in-house graphic designer for a small company, and done freelance illustration/layout work for literally two decades, plus I do have actual recorded training in fine arts and the various Adobe Creative Suite programs -- and still think of myself as faking my way through this with zero qualifications, only getting jobs because the employer was too foolish or stingy to hire a "real" designer.

I know it's probably a terrible idea (see, there I go again), but I'm strongly tempted, next time I land a job interview, to either show up drunk* ; or to tell myself that since I won't get the job anyway, to just treat it as a rehearsal in which nothing I say or do really matters; and see if that can simulate normal human levels of confidence.


*Based on past experience, Drunk Me only registers as noticeably drunk to myself. People who've seen me at parties, please correct me if I'm wrong.


January 15th, 2017

10:15 am:  Just accidentally discovered the existence of a novel in which 1930s Hollywood is hit with a plague of vampirism; and it's mainly told from the PoV of Oliver Hardy. Unfortunately the novel is in Italian, and the only English version appears to have simply been run through Google Translate, which does add to the weird dreamlike quality, but does nothing for the story's coherence:

The sound played by the orchestra light the dances' fuses. On the waiters' trays glass full of Gimlet and White Lady shined constantly.

...

Hollywood's most dangerous lips, housed between the nose and the chin of Louella Parsons, acted as the perfect gossip machine they were as soon as she noticed the presence of Mary Pickford, followed by her most gossiped brother, Jack.

"Interesting. Have you noticed her pants suit, Mr. Rock? It's black, a sign of mourning. I've heard from credible sources that our Mary is on the verge of retiring. And what do you say about the absence of her husband? A very bad move to swap him for that spineless brother of hers."

...

On the eve of her forties, America's former sweetheart had cut her blonde curls and dressed in black. She could be hardly recognized. Above her pale and rouge-touched face, she hid her darkly circled eyes behind a smoked glass. The fluid mess of her movements could have be deemed sensual, if it hadn't been so creepy.



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January 4th, 2017

07:06 pm:  Had a job interview today, so now I'm obsessing over all the ways I might have put the interviewers off hiring me. My main worry is that I put my foot in my mouth when they asked me if I'd mind being the only non-immigrant there and I said "well as long as you can tolerate my inability to speak Cantonese or Mandarin we should be fine." 
"We all speak English," replied one of the interviewers, and I thought oh great, now I've inadvertently insulted her language skills. All I can say in my defence is that I was caught off-guard by the question. Later, when my potential boss (Afrikaans) brought up the same query, I did say that I took issue with being referred to as "the real Canadian," and the implication that he and his colleagues weren't. 

Anyway, we shall see.


January 1st, 2017

11:23 am:  I guess my informal New Year's resolution is to try to stand up for causes I agree with, as least so far as a person can with limited income and a spouse who can't leave the house most days.

I'm among those irritated by Simon and Schuster giving a book-deal to arch-troll Milo Yiannopoulos, and [community profile] thisfinecrew  makes the case that the best way to get a publisher's attention is snail-mail.

Simon & Schuster is already pitching the deal as a blow for freedom of speech, and in any case I often find myself loathe to base an argument on political opinion or even ethics, as the other person may not share mine or even have any. Instead I've decided to try the suggestion that giving a large advance to someone whose previous published work is full of plagiarized lines might not have been the wisest move, and that at the very least the editors are going to have to earn every penny of their paycheques. My printer isn't working, so I hand-wrote it, but that will probably add an extra bit of passive-aggression to the missive. 

To to be mailed out tomorrow when the post offices open, I guess.


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December 31st, 2016

11:55 am: Classic Who Rewatch -- Pyramids of Mars
 OMG this is so Hammer-horror-esque.

I commented that the ending of Episode 1 is a pretty good demonstration of what people mean by Cultural Appropriation, in that Namin's family has been faithfully worshipping Sutekh in secret for generations, awaiting his return, and then suddenly some white man swans in saying "I am the servant of Sutekh; he needs no other," and zaps him. Andrew disagrees, though, on the grounds that Scarman was dead/possessed and didn't actually choose to serve Sutekh or usurp Namin. In any case Sutek, being evil and all, would probably consider the injustice to be a bonus.


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December 30th, 2016

01:47 pm:  Just testing my ability to post links, italicize etc, as my post the other day didn't cooperate and the raw HTML showed up.

Ok, I think everything's ok now.


December 29th, 2016

08:48 am: LJ
 The Death of LJ gets predicted every couple of years, but <a href="http://siderea.livejournal.com/1330197.html> this news</a>, from [personal profile] siderea  via [personal profile] dewline , is worrying. Time to get back in the habit of posting on Dreamwidth (where I'm also named moon_custafer), and cross-posting to here.

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December 25th, 2016

08:22 pm: Last night we watched Devil Doll (1936), starring Lionel Barrymore. A bank executive framed for robbery and manslaughter escapes years later in the company of a mad scientist, who wants to solve overpopulation and world hunger by shrinking everybody to doll size. They join his wife and fellow mad scientist, who's been carrying on their work, but her research ethics are pretty dodgy, and she still hasn't overcome the problem that miniaturization leaves the subject's mind a blank slate, effectively turning them into a doll-size controllable zombie. Dr. Mr. Mad-Scientist keels over mid-experiment, and Barrymore persuades Dr. Mrs. Mad-Scientist to help him with his revenge plot, which involves Barrymore disguising himself as an old lady who runs a toy shop and selling killer "dolls" to the families of the men who framed him....

Where to start? There's no real reason for Barrymore to don drag, since the police don't actually have any recent pictures of him, but I guess he's worried his daughter might recognize him otherwise. The "doll" is marketed as coming with accessories that include beautiful little jewels stiletto" -- handy for stabbing people, but you'd think it might arouse suspicion in a children's toy: "introducing Stabarbie, with eye-gouging action!" I thought for sure it had to be a pre-Code picture, given the weirdness and the ending in which Barrymore pretty much gets away with everything, but Wikipedia says it was made in 1936.

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December 19th, 2016

08:01 pm: Inertia
Oh electoral college.

I didn't have much hope, but I'm still disappointed.

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December 13th, 2016

10:16 pm: Links, etc, Roundup
Since I can't think of anything useful about the state of the world. I will try phoning the office of Foreign Affairs tomorrow as suggested below. I hate phone calls, but supposedly they get more attention than email.


ETA -- So, it looks as though an evacuation was brokered late last night, but has now bogged down, with a bunch of civilians stuck just outside the city between checkpoints. I tried calling the Foreign Office, and was advised to email after all: info@international.gc.ca

This is what I emailed, in case anyone wants a template to do the same, though I can't claim it's a model of informative or inspiring text:

Hello --
I've been trying to follow the news on this situation, and I gather there was a ceasefire brokered last night to allow the evacuation of civilians from Aleppo, but that it stalled early this morning. Is there anything the Canadian Ministry of Foreign Affairs can do to help get things moving again? If so, I would like, as a citizen, to encourage our government to do it. Our admission of refugees at the start of this year shows we are willing to help; let's keep up the good work.

Thank you


More frivolous, but on the recycling/free cycling bandwagon -- I joined www.bunz.com a week and a half back, and have been trading things for other things. Would like to get more subway tokens out of it, but at least it gets me out of the apartment (and on CTV, apparently.)

Interesting things I read this week: Jet Set Sewing is a sewing blog by a woman interested in mid-20th-century clothing. As it happens, her sister is with the Martha Graham troupe and, as a dancer in the 1970s, was provided by the designer Halston with clothes to wear to gala events (Halston designed costumes for the company, and also knew dancers weren't well paid). She still has a lot of these in her closet, and the photos show the fascinating, often hand-sewn interior details, as well as the union label.

The keynote speech from this year's James Tiptree, Jr. Symposium never actually mentions fanfic, but is arguably all about it. Also gorillas.

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