The Statue Beneath the Sea
Once upon an ocean, a statue dwelled beneath the waves. In days past the statue had been brightly painted and crowned with gilt, with jewels for eyes and jewels set in its magnificent wings. It remembered dancers crowding its plaza and lovers exchanging promise-poems beneath its benevolent gaze, parades of helmeted youths and prophetesses giving speeches in the sinuous language of time unwound.
It had never met the general whose victories it was meant to commemorate, although it knew that some statues had that privilege. But it had their smooth face and their smile, and even though the jewels of its eyes had long ago been stolen by treasure-scavengers, it had something of the general's vision. It knew the stories of the general and their honored lover the lady scholar, and how they had built the old city to a precipice of grandeur.
Those days had passed long ago, however, and the wars of weather-mages had sunk the city below the sea. No one now living remembered the city's name the way it had been spoken by its inhabitants, although it lingered in distorted whispers and siren-songs that wound through the tides. The statue remembered its people and yearned for whatever scraps of myth it could gather from the gossip of gulls and sailors.
The fish and the anemones, mindful of the statue's melancholy, spoke with it little. In truth it would have welcomed their chatter. But when it asked them for stories of war (in honor of its general), they could only share tales of cannonades and blood staining the foam, so different from the swift chariots and dust-clouds it knew of, and its melancholy only deepened.
At last an entourage of dragons, distant cousins of the Dragon King Under the Sea, visited the sunken city. One of the dragons, hardly more than an eggling as dragons reckon time, especially liked to explore vanished civilizations. She was particularly taken by the statue's eroded marble surfaces, seeing in them the litany of years gone and years to come.
The statue told the dragon of its vanished city, and its general's victories--more fable than truth by this point, not that there was anyone to correct it--and the dragon listened eagerly. She began telling the statue's stories to the sharks and the seahorses, the terns and the turtles. Soon the creatures of the sea came to listen to the statue as well, and to honor it with their tribute.
It wasn't long before the statue's old plaza was surrounded by nets woven of pirates' beards, and strands of coins marked around the rim with praises to octopus gods, and bits and pieces of filigree armor snatched from soldiers fallen overboard. The creatures of the sea, not to mention the dragons, began frequenting the statue's plaza, and carrying out their own ceremonies there.
While the statue knew that the people it had once known would never return, and that the old city was dead in truth, it found some comfort in seeing a new one arise where the old had been.
Because of my linguistic coprocessor, it's very easy for me to hack a pidgin if I know any of its main antecedents. So for instance, I can clock "don" as the past-tense marker: "BBC Pidgin don start today" = "BBC Pidgin started today." Take a look at the new materials and see what bits of grammar and vocabulary you can identify. \o/
Meanwhile over in Terramagne, I bet their BBC offers a whole bunch of different overlays like this. France probably does too, because they spawned a lot of colonial languages, including the Haitian French that Saraphina speaks. Hmm, I wonder how long it'll take Aidan to catch onto that resource, because he's not much of a TV junkie. But an hour of French-national Haitian French overlay would be good practice for them, and a nice change from the much scarcer pure Haitian programming.
I still have not seen the orange kitten I was warned could be an issue. It's afraid of people but likes to tussle with older cats. I expect Ibid will like this and Fig will not.
One reason I've been writing down a lot of T-American food choices and linking similar local recipes is because they're a lot farther along the path of using dietary choices to support health. That's mostly replicable here. You can see it with Shiv in particular, how much better he feels now than several months ago. That's not all due to the extra psych support he's getting; it's also because he's eating better.
Spotted this the other day and then forgot to mention it:
Actually, not in Tunbridge Wells, which evokes images of orgiastic goings on in the Pantiles amidst a crowd of the local denizens being Disgusted.
In fact, in a wood nearby.
'People living in the area have expressed concern over noise, parking and decency': which is almost in the fine tradition of the inhabitants of Hampstead not minding so much about the actual cruising taking place at the famed gay cruising grounds of the Heath, but that they were leaving litter.
A local farmer reported 'Locals that hadn't bought tickets posed the biggest problem for event organisers, with hundreds of people trying to get in on the action'.
A man was found dead and a woman unconscious at the campsite this morning: while all the reports namecheck the festival, it sounds as if it was over by then. The report in the Telegraph suggests that it is possible that fumes from a barbecue were to blame, and the death is so far described as unexplained. But obviously, all reports are going to mention the kinky sex party.
Mixed in with the fashion tips and celebrity gossip, they have some terrific "celebrate yourself" pieces and amazing current events articles.
Their celebrity news mentions the importance of consent and all-around not being a jerk. Their makeup and fashion articles talk about individuality and bringing out your best features - which are not expected to be the same as everyone else's. They mention how disabilities and different cultural backgrounds interact with popular trends. Their photos aren't all of white people, nor thin people, nor young people. Their target demographic is definitely "teenage girls" - but they don't make everything pink, and they don't have "how to catch a boyfriend" articles.
I'd been meaning to subscribe since campaign season and never quite got around to it. Fixed that today.
Link: Here at AO3
FP Jones/Kevin Keller
When his Omega walks out on him and his family, FP Jones is then considered a disgraced Alpha, incapable of caring for and unworthy of having a mate. When he has the opportunity to marry Omega Kevin Keller, FP Jones is determined to take him as a mate to provide another mother to his children, but he’s caught off-guard when he finds himself falling for Kevin along the way.
"Tatiana Maslany Says Goodbye to 'Orphan Black'". [series finale spoilers]
Sarah Rees Brennan wrote "Our Winged Brains: The Appeal of Winged Creatures in Genre Fiction" for Tor.com.
seananmcguire wrote a fantastic Twitter thread about the awesomeness of In Other Lands.
"'Atomic Blonde' Doesn’t Pretend Women Fight Like Men, And The Result Is Awesome".
Via recessional, a Tumblr post about Atomic Blonde...which is really hard to describe without spoilers. It has to do with a plot point that many people have warned others about in advance of their seeing the film (a warning for which a lot of people have been grateful, whether or not it dissuaded them from seeing the film themselves), and offers a take on why the "this horrible thing happens [so the movie failed us/is bad/perpetuates the same bad things that always happen]!" warning is misleading and the event is in fact genre appropriate.
"Doorways to Fantasy: Rovina Cai Illustrates Seanan McGuire’s Wayward Children". [Tor.com]
"You're screwing this up: An open letter to Hollywood from your mortal enemy (the female comic fan)".
"N. K. Jemisin’s New Contemporary Fantasy Trilogy Will “Mess with the Lovecraft Legacy”". [Tor.com]
"Library of America Recognizes Ursula K. Le Guin (and Science Fiction)". [Book Riot]
"Robin McKinley: A Pioneer in YA Fiction". [Book Riot]
"The masseuse who pulled my arm out". [BBC] "Life with a disability can sometimes give rise to unspoken questions and sensitivities, but amid the awkwardness there can be humour. The following is an edited version of a sketch by Angela Clarke who has Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, delivered for the BBC at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival."
"Confessions of a Costume Curator: As a fashion historian, my job is to learn from other people’s clothes—a task that is challenging, messy, and often spooky".
I think I may've linked this before--it's from last year--but I came across it again and still really like it: "24 Things Women Over 30 Should Wear".
"Swan, Late: The unexpected joys of adult beginner ballet". [Note: the writer frequently uses the term "oriental dance" when talking about bellydance; I'm not sure if that's a standard term in those circles? It pings me uncomfortably, so I figured I'd note it.]
"‘Kids are gross’: on feminists and agency". "What I’ve come to suspect is that many feminists’ failure to recognise the autonomy of children is, at least in part, symptomatic of the way children have for many feminists become symbols of oppression. But when we are unable to separate the systematic discrimination that makes mothering a ridiculously difficult and often oppressive role from the fact that children are sentient, autonomous human beings who deserve dignity and respect, we are in danger of allowing glaring hypocrisies to creep into the way we construct and use feminist principles and ideas."
"INFOGRAPHIC: A world of languages - and how many speak them".
"N.K. Jemisin’s #AntiFascistSFF and Gail Simone’s #ComicsHateNazis Are the Inspiration You Need on This Monstrous Day". [The Mary Sue] (From earlier this month.)
"Eisner Nominee Renae De Liz Shares Short Guide for Artists on How to De-Objectify Female Characters". 
"A Sweet Valley High Movie is Coming (from the Writer of Legally Blonde!)" [Book Riot]
"How to Keep a Roomba Vacuum Cleaner From Collecting Data About Your Home".
"A New Canon: In Pop Music, Women Belong At The Center Of The Story" and "The 150 Greatest Albums Made By Women". [NPR] (Tori's Little Earthquakes is #27.)
I found this wonderful dancer with a hoop--and this young man doing same..
Characters/Pairing/Other Subject: Portraits of various characters in garden settings
Content Notes/Warnings: none
Medium: digital painting
Artist on DW/LJ: n/a
Artist Website/Gallery: janematwain
Why this piece is awesome: This is a series of garden-themed pictures that so far includes Pearl, Amethyst, Steven, Peridot, Lapis, and Connie. I love the concept, the colors, and the wealth of detail in each of these — Lapis's picture even has water dripping out of the bottoms of the pots. There's some great characterization (Amethyst's version of a "garden" made me laugh). My favorite is Peridot's, which makes wonderful use of light and captures Peridot's nervousness about being able to take proper care of all these tiny Earth life forms.
Link: Gem's Garden
Who does that? The full power of modern medicine has gone to work, and though she is crimson, yet she has regained her sense of humor (we have discovered that a 103.4° fever replaces her sense of humor with an intractable sense of doom) and is eating Saltines. So there's that.
Characters/Pairing/Other Subject: Rocket and baby Groot
Content Notes/Warnings: none
Medium: digital painting
Artist on DW/LJ: n/a
Artist Website/Gallery: Zyden on DA
Why this piece is awesome: The notes under the art are great - Zyden imagines this as how Rocket would train up baby Groot - starting with a water pistol. I love the energy in the picture and their fierce expressions, even in play.
Link: GotG2 - Baby Groot and Rocket
The Complete List of Racists by Michael Harriot at the Root:
If the alt-right were a family, the Ku Klux Klan, neo-Nazis and skinheads would be the grandparents, aunts and uncles who get their plates fixed first, while the anti-globalists, anti-feminists and “racialists” would sit at the kids’ table and have to drink out of paper cups.
Alt-Right, Alt-Left, Antifa: A Glossary of Extremist Language by Liam Stack at the New York Times:
Both phrases are part of a broad lexicon of far-right terminology that has become important to understanding American politics during the Trump administration. Many of these terms have their roots in movements that are racist, anti-Semitic and sexist.
How to describe extremists who rallied in Charlottesville by John Daniszewski at the AP blog:
"alt-right" A political grouping or tendency mixing racism, white nationalism, anti-Semitism and populism; a name currently embraced by some white supremacists and white nationalists to refer to themselves and their ideology, which emphasizes preserving and protecting the white race in the United States.
Alt Right: A Primer about the New White Supremacy at the Anti-Defamation League:
Though not every person who identifies with the Alt Right is a white supremacist, most are and “white identity” is central to people in this milieu. In fact, Alt Righters reject modern conservatism explicitly because they believe that mainstream conservatives are not advocating for the interests of white people as a group.
A Deconstruction Of The Alt-Right Movement by Rachel Toalson at Huffington Post:
The problem, see, is that while Spencer appears to be an intelligent human being, he also appears to be well practiced in manipulation and rhetoric — which, unfortunately, those who are unpracticed in the art of writing and the training of rhetorical composition, will be unable to recognize. So this is my humble attempt to do it for them.
It is time to stop using the term ‘alt right’
In recent years, American racists have taken pains to come up with new terminology to self-identify with—such as the so-called “alt-right,” a phrase credited to avowed racist Richard Spencer, who famously celebrated Trump’s victory with Nazi salutes.
**** ( A few thoughts inside )