November 3rd, 2009

Whale fluke

(no subject)

Looks like today is faithhopetricks's birthday.

Scary smart, wicked funny, committed to her husband, to her pets and to Getting Better: that's faithhopetricks. She can speak complicated truths even in ALL CAPS (which she does for effect, not because of Net illiteracy like so many ALL CAPPers have). She, simply put, is neat.

Moi, I wish for you and yours to have a gentle day. Snuggling's a good gentle thing to do.
Whale fluke

Help yuki_onna and justbeast!

I just donated money to the "get catvalente and her husband justbeast the hell out of Germany where they're stuck!" fund. PayPal again is a force for good. Here's a write-up of how Cat and Dmitri got screwed and how they're trying to get unscrewed.

To balance out the suckassedness of this news for them, A) their wedding was spectacular and B) Cat's novel Palimpsest made #1 on Amazon's list of the top 10 fantasy and science fiction novels of 2009.

Worth updating: Word from Cat is "Oh my god, you guys. You may me cry. We have enough to sort this out. Please concentrate on pressuring Expedia, not sending us any more money." And Neil Gaiman has tweeted on Cat and Dmitri's behalf. (So has Cat's friend Caitlin R. Kiernan, a.k.a. greygirlbeast.)
Cartoon Chris

Easily amused is what I am. Probably makes me a cheap date.

At work today I was fooling around with/testing my layout skills on PowerPoint. On one slide I wrote
Goals Today
  • See a million faces
  • Rock them all
  • That reminds me of when I was working in a hospital's medical records department, and to test something I made a fake medical report with the symptoms taken from Tom Waits's "What's He Building?" "Has no dog. Has no friends. Lawn is dying. What's with all the packages he sends?"

    "So many social engagements. So little time."


    Raising Arizona. From the Bagdad's big screen to your eyeballs, if you're in Portland on Friday. Doors at 10 p.m., film at 11. Hosted by the soon-to-be-podcasting-again Cort and Fatboy.

    Be there or be bereft of the film that made a lot of people wonder who these crazy Coen Brothers guys were. Blood Simple got them attention, obviously (and rightly so), but Raising Arizona was their first cult hit. Twenty-two years later and it's still quoted. There'd be no Big Lebowski or Coen Brothers film version of No Country For Old Men without this film. Mmmmmaybe we still would've gotten Fargo, though...

    ...Holy crap. I'm analyzin' and philosophizin' because of Raising Arizona. Another sign it's influential...
    Whale fluke

    One more yuki_onna/justbeast post tonight,

    then sweet, sweet slumber. Cutting-and-pasting Quoting saraphina_marie:
    As many of you already may know, Cat Valente (catvalente) is stranded in Germany right now.
    The short version is she and her new hubs were told repeatedly by Expedia that that DID NOT need visas to get into Russia. And then they were barred entry in Germany because they had no visas.
    Expedia is not only refusing to help them, they are refusing to admit they made a mistake.

    Here are some things you can do:

    1. Call or email Expedia. It's free. An email will take you 5 minutes to compose and send. A phone call will take longer, but may create a bigger impact.
    The reference number to cite is: #129634757977
    Me, I opted for email because they have already conveniently forgotten about at least one customer service phone call they received! They will issue you a case number with the email for tracking purposes. [Chris here. Cat has said this is the best thing we can do right now. Someone compared this to the "United Breaks Guitars" thing that made the rounds recently on the Net.]

    2. Head over to The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland and toss in a donation. (And read some while you're at it. It's damn good.) With exorbitant flight change fees, they are already halfway through their spending money and they haven't even gotten to Russia yet!
    Expedia has "generously" sent them $100 for their inconvenience. Which amounts to about 75 Euro. Certainly not enough for two adults to get a hotel, dinner, and a cab to/from the airport- not to mention the $500+ change fee to the airline. [Chris again. THE MONEY SITUATION IS NO LONGER DIRE, but it's worth keeping this link for future reference. Cyber-fundraising is the new hotness, and from what I've heard -- I haven't read it -- this is a hell of a good story.]

    3. Join the Facebook group. It is being organized as a virtual gathering point for people. We can compare notes about what was done and the response and set up plans of attack, so to speak. And from the chatter there, Expedia has a very nasty habit of dropping the ball like this.

    4. Blog, tweet, repost, boost the signal.
    Feel free to copy this post if that helps you out.

    Good Omens

    Time for me to get sucked in.

    In other news, I've finally started watching Lost. Until seeing the pilot tonight, I had NEVER seen even an entire scene of the show. But I have borrowed copies of Seasons 1 through 4 on DVD and I'm not afraid to use them!