eruthros: Delenn from Babylon 5 with a startled expression and the text "omg!" (Default)
So this afternoon I was sitting on a bus, heading off campus, and I saw this guy get on wearing a plastic lei with a condom taped to it and a little tag on the back. "Huh," I thought, "I wonder what that's all about. Some event, maybe?" but I couldn't see the tag.

Then, later, he sat down in front of me, and it turns out the tag said "You have just been safely lei'd by the Condom Co-op."

Also, I was putting books away a while ago and glanced at my copy of A Wizard of Earthsea, by Ursula K. Le Guin. One blurb, from the London Sunday Times, contained this fabulous phrase:

Among the looms of fantasy fiction, Ursula Le Guin weaves on where J.R.R. Tolkien cast off. It's a large claim; heresy perhaps to legions of Hobbit fanciers.


So, of course, y'all know the first thing I thought of when I read that. Because "pervy hobbit fanciers" is just such a great phrase.

I don't know, though, that I would say that Le Guin and Tolkien have anything in common beyond writing in nominally fantasy worlds on occasion. Le Guin rocks my world with her speculative fiction, and while I really like Tolkien's Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, they're not exactly what I would call speculative.

I think Ursula K. Le Guin writes beautifully, and does her "thought-experiments" with all the ability of someone who really thinks about people, and what makes people (she is, after all, the daughter of one of the foremost anthropologists of the early 20th century). Her words:

I am not predicting, or prescribing. I am describing. I am describing certain aspects of psychological reality in the novelist's way, which is by inventing elaborately circumstantial lies. ... The truth is a matter of the imagination.


Clearly, the intent, execution, and style is entirely different.
eruthros: Delenn from Babylon 5 with a startled expression and the text "omg!" (Default)
I couldn't spell. Still can't. It doesn't help that I was reading Doyle and Chesterton in first grade, and various versions Robin Hood and Arthur soon after: I mixed up British, American, and just plain bad spelling. People thought I was totally blind about spelling, because I didn't pick it up even though I read voraciously. But it was confusing. I *heart* the OED.

So, partly because I couldn't spell, I got some pretty amusing words mixed up:

Peasant and pheasant. The concept of Danny, The Champion of the World is much more reasonable when you realize they're hunting birds. And the concept of the feudal system is much more reasonable when you realize the oppressed underlings are not, in fact, birds.

Heresy and hearsay. I spent many years confused about the Spanish inquisition: they were killing people for gossiping? I mean, whoa! That's a pretty strong statement about gossip. When I worked this one out, around second grade, I became very confused about religion instead. But at least I was confused about the right concept.

I thought "mischievous" was two different words, one spoken and one written, especially since some people pronounce it like I read it and some people pronounce it "properly."

Spelling is another matter entirely. I mean, I couldn't differentiate between "desert" and "dessert" in spelling, but at least I knew they were two different things.
eruthros: Delenn from Babylon 5 with a startled expression and the text "omg!" (Default)
I've been thinking for a while now that the reason that I don't update is that I haven't updated, so I have too much to say and nowhere to start. (This is unfortunately similar to the logic many people use in not cleaning or doing dishes.) I mean, The Last Six Months of My Life In 500 Words sounds too much like a medschool essay prompt.

So I decided to update. Today wasn't really a momentous day or anything, but who cares?

I've been on a B5 kick again. For some reason, I associate B5 season 3 and 4 with cleaning and packing; I'd grab a random tape and fling it in to entertain me while I worked. I've had no luck addicting people to B5 (unlike my success rate for BtVS, which is phenomenal), except on one occasion when I was moving out of my dorm room. A friend came over to do grading while I had season 3 on, and the next thing I knew he wouldn't leave because he was stuck. He ended up staying up all night the day before he had to move out because he hadn't done any real packing....

All I have to say on the subject of today's particular B5 is: WWE1+2. Wow. Just. Wow.

[redacted]

I've also gained a new title: Eruthros, Evil Crossover Rationalizer Goddess from Hell. My girlfriend says to me "Man, I want to slash Chloe, but I can't stand Lana." So I started proposing people for Chloe, and joked about Dawn. They are the same age, after all. She asked how it would work, and the next thing I know I've detailed plot scenarios for Chloe/Dawn. I don't even femmeslash! And I wasn't serious! And now she blames me!

The next thing I know, someone asks me to rationalize Pete/Chloe/Clark -- in character. Nigh on impossible. Then RayK having sex with Krycek when Krycek's clearly a bad guy. Apparently this is my new purpose in life. Forget zooarchaeology!
eruthros: Delenn from Babylon 5 with a startled expression and the text "omg!" (Default)
Heh! My last post made me remember that list I wrote at the original airdate of Endgame in 1997. This is one of the ways I wrote to save Marcus:

21. They shoot his body out onto a planet that is in the process of growing and he is reformed by it, growing as fast as it does in the beginning in order to return to Babylon 5 in a year.

The ridiculous things one writes to get a favorite character back; or, why some fanfiction doesn't work. I mean, Mulder shoves off and it's all "oh, *again?*" Basically takes no effort. Anybody can fix it any which way. In the case of the Babylon 5s of the world, it's pretty much over once the guy's dead.

Also:

41. He needs to be in the spinoff.

It's a good show, and so that doesn't cut it. Just because he would have been excellent as a Ranger on an all-Ranger show is no excuse to start weirdo plot lines.
eruthros: Delenn from Babylon 5 with a startled expression and the text "omg!" (Default)
I just found out the Sineala is trying to summarize our recent discussions about how and why some shows have more and better fanfiction.

Babylon 5 is a show where there's really very little good fanfiction. I choose to believe that this is because the show kicks so much ass, and the characters as so well-drawn, that it's difficult, if not impossible, to write fanfiction that fulfills all of the fanfiction characteristics we love, both filling in plot holes or tangenting off incomplete plot ideas and building or investigating characterisation.

I think the most common pairing in B5 is Marcus/Ivanova, because their story had a Sad Ending. But I think it's kind of like trying to write fanfiction for Romeo and Juliet -- it's so well done, fixing it would either make the emotions trite and lose the power of the moments on the show or have to do incredibly ridiculous plot thingies or both. I mean, when the famous Marcus Moment happened, I wrote a list of 100 ways to save him (both before and after the end of Endgame) as a joke -- and man, silly and farfetched and not in keeping with the spirit of the show.

Not that the emotions in R+J might not be trite already...

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