rachelmanija: (Default)
( Sep. 13th, 2012 07:30 pm)
If you already have inside info on this matter, please do not vote in the poll. Otherwise, please guess what remarkable sight I saw today.

[Poll #1866054]

To get to Asheville, NC, I had to trasfer at Charlotte to a very small plane, reachable by walking across the tarmac, which was so small that the sound of the propellers, once inside, precluded conversation. I then arrived in the deserted Asheville airport and discovered that I was unable to rent a car, as all rental cars were already rented. Based on this information, I concluded that I was in the Hicksville, south of Nowhere.

Actually, it turns out that Asheville, or at least the parts of it I've seen so far, is considerably more hip and upscale than my own neighborhood. It reminds me a bit of Santa Barbara, except with nicer shops. Also with more head shops. I remarked today, while driving with my mom and a mutual friend, upon the fact that I had noted three bong shops in a four block radius.

Friend: "Bong shops?"

Mom: "Head shops."

Friend: "Head shops?"

Me: "Shops selling equipment with which to smoke marijuana. Although, given that mom has been able to find several cafes that will make her cappucinos with almond milk, the marijuana is probably organic."

Mom: "And gluten-free."

Friend: "Manufactured in a nut-free environment... though possibly manufactured BY nuts."

We went to 12 Bones, which was recommended by basically everyone I met as "where the President had barbecue." EXCELLENT. Especially the ribs and the sweet, fluffy corn pudding.

After that, we went to one of the greatest shops I have ever encountered, a huge bookshop/coffeeshop, very well-designed, with little passages into more rooms of books, all opening up in a "bigger on the inside" effect. They have several fancy varieties of dog coffee, that is, coffee drinks named after dogs. I had the Red Setter (coffee with raspberry syrup, whipped cream, Kahlua, and a sprinkle of red sugar), and bought Island Year and Wild Life in the Southwest.

Also, the area where I'm staying is quite beautiful and green, with tall trees covered in ivy. Nice weather, a bit hot in the day but nowhere near the swelter of LA when I left. Photos will be forthcoming.
In between finishing the very long online course, I read Shadow Ops: Control Point. Good premise, nice military details, good first third. Everything after the first third slowly disintegrated under the weight of the hero's incessant flip-flopping between "the magic army is evil and I want no part of it and will loudly say so at every opportunity" and "I'm in the army now and I better make the best of it," not to mention his truly remarkable ability to make the worst possible decision under any given circumstance.

Below the cut is a spoilery poll involving a particularly crucial decision. Basically, I'm curious if everyone else shares my thoughts on what the worst option is; the best is probably debatable.

Read more... )
rachelmanija: (Book Fix)
( Sep. 3rd, 2011 05:20 pm)
I brought some books with me, and also poked through the parents' library, which turned up some oddities. Please vote for whatever you think will be either good, or produce an amusing review.

[Poll #1775599]
rachelmanija: (Book Fix)
( Aug. 30th, 2011 10:56 am)
Note: If you recognize this novel, please don't name it, as that would be spoilery.

[Poll #1774314]
Several of you suggested that I hold a poll so you could vote for me to read and review a YA dystopian novel, and sponsor me to do so to raise money for The Virginia Avenue Project. (Making Los Angeles less dystopic since 1992!)

Anyone may vote in the poll. However, people who make an actual pledge will have their votes very, very heavily weighted. If you're willing to pledge, please comment to say so with the amount. (Due to recurrent problems with the VAP website, if you guys trust me, this go-round I'd prefer that you Paypal the money to me, and I'll pass it to them.

If there are multiple suggestions of books not on the list, or if several books are neck-to-neck, I will hold a second poll as a YA dystopia run-off.

[Poll #1743678]
A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.

This inspired me to create my own list which, like Heinlein's, is a mix of things I've done, figure I could do if I had to, and daydream that I can do. (Unless Heinlein dictated his from beyond the grave, he had not already died gallantly.) I do not, however, remotely think they are things all human beings should do. Well. Maybe "take criticism gracefully."

Can you butcher a hog? How about eviscerating a bad book? )
I see that fantasy authors are still doing their damndest to gross me out. I never thought I'd say this, but I would have preferred vomit.

Cut for YECCCH )
rachelmanija: (Default)
( Apr. 30th, 2010 12:08 pm)
[personal profile] rilina is taking nominations for a face-off of silly anime and manga names.

Already nominated: Jacuzzi Splot, Luffy D. Monkey, Eraldo Coil, Bring Stabity, Hallelujah/Allelujah Haptism, Jizabel Disraeli, and Corn.

...what a short list! There are so many more! From the tin-eared "American" names in Death Note, to the "I took some random letters and scrambled them until they were sort of pronounceable" of Gundam Seed, to the peculiar spellings I've heard of in Hunter x Hunter... go add to the list!
I am now curious to find out whether churros are really common knowledge in the US (and outside of the US.)

[Poll #1440247]
The package sent to Rachel Ninja Brown, from [livejournal.com profile] telophase, contained a romance in which the hero is secretly a unicorn. Thank you! Maybe.

The actual contents of the other packages were:

1. Elk, venison, and buffalo jerky, from [livejournal.com profile] telophase. OM NOM NOM.
2. A romance novel in which the hero is an angel and the heroine is a tentacled mermaid, from [livejournal.com profile] oyceter.
3. A VB Rose pencil case and a Temari figurine, from [livejournal.com profile] octopedingenue.
4. An anthology of Armenian authors and another about Desi New Yorkers, from [livejournal.com profile] madam_silvertip.

Thank you very much, O angels of the postal service!

Things which I did not get, but would be very pleased if someone were to send them:

1. Three Norse sagas.
2. Books on Indian regional cooking and everyday life in Heian Japan.
3. A plushie “more special” Sasuke, if such a thing exists. (Probably.)
4. Shuriken

Things which I hope I never receive:

1. A head.
2. The oracular penis novel (explained in the same link as the unicorn dude novel)
3. Venom cock.

Things which, as far as I know, do not exist (but which I’d love to get if they do):

1. A romance about banshees.
2. A romance in which the hero is secretly a book in the heroine’s library.
3. A romance in which the heroine is an angel and the hero is a mermaid with tentacles. (I already read the one in which the hero is a non-tentacled merman and the heroine is a psychic violinist.)

Things whose receipt would bring me a mix of delight and horror:

1. A romance about Vikings. Somehow I suspect the heroines would be nowhere near as wonderfully terrifying as they are in the sagas! Though it would totally make my day, or possibly make me vomit, if the euphemism for male equipment was “halberd.”

Things which I sent to someone else:

1. A Naruto tie-in ninja energy drink, to [livejournal.com profile] rushthatspeaks.

And now for the winner!

This was quite a difficult challenge. Only two contestants got more answers right than wrong (both by one.) The lucky winners, who may now prompt me to write them a piece of original or fanfic flash fiction, are [livejournal.com profile] tool_of_satan and [livejournal.com profile] suileach!
rachelmanija: (Bleach: Parakeet of DOOM)
( Apr. 24th, 2009 01:27 pm)
I will write a flashfic, original or fanfic, to a prompt of the choice of the person or people who get the most correct and fewest incorrect guesses. People who actually sent me one or more of these items are disqualified, but should fill out the poll anyway!

[Poll #1389415]
I am sick in bed and reading romance novels. If you love me, rec me something angsty. Does not have to be genre romance, just contain a romance and angst. I've already read the Lymond Chronicles, Gaudy Night, and all or most of Emma Bull, Laura Kinsale, Suzanne Brockmann, Lois McMaster Bujold, Ellen Kushner, and Marjorie Liu. If it's a famous work of fantasy or sf, I have probably already read it.

Create your own romantic hero/heroine below! I leave it up to you whether your choices reflect your actual fantasies, a character you'd like to read about, or just what you think would be most hilarious.

Jewel-colored eyes, metallic skin, poetic hair, and secret identities )
In honor of Cantarella being about the tenth manga to make me root for the incest pairing, I present a fictional sibling incest poll! It is limited to siblings, half-siblings, clones, cousins, and other non-parental cases, because I find the latter too disturbing to even think about.

Please spoiler-protect all comments that need spoilers, either through blackout or rot13.com. If it is revealed as a surprise anywhere later than halfway through volume 1, it is a spoiler!

Cut for incest )


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