highlyeccentric: Manuscript illumination - courtiers throwing snowballs (medieval - everybody snowball)
2017-01-01 03:41 pm
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End of Year Meme

1. What did you do in 2016 that you'd never done before?

... saw an opera? Not live, though, so I'm not sure if that counts. Co-wrote an article. Oh, and visited Africa! (Morocco only, but it's a new continent for me).

2. Did you keep your New Years' resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

I'm pretty sure I didn't make any, and don't expect to make any more. Unless muttering I am gonna make it through this year counts as a resolution.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?


4. Did anyone close to you die?


5. What countries did you visit?

UK (both Scotland and England), France, the Netherlands, Morocco, Australia. I think that was it.

6. What would you like to have in 2017 that you lacked in 2016?

Last year I said motivation, and I *did* get some of that! Rather erratic, but it happened. If I say 'a sex life' will I get an erratic one of those this year?

7. What date from 2016 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

The actual *date*? I am probably going to remember the 21st of December, for ridiculous fandom reasons. Also we had an awesome work party.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

I can now SEE the end of my thesis ahead of me. I have to actually DO it but I can SEE it. Also I co-wrote an article on gifsets.

9. What was your biggest failure?

As for 2016: don't even. I don't wanna talk about it. Everything. Nothing.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

Brains, so much brains. (As per 2015, then) Also I had too many colds.

11. What was the best thing you bought?

Hmm. A new camera? A fair bit of new music?

12. Whose behaviour merited celebration?

My boss has been pretty awesome this year, actually!

13. Whose behaviour made you appalled and depressed?

THE GLOBAL VOTING POPULATION. Except for Austria, you go, Austria.

14. Where did most of your money go?

Rent and living expenses. Burgers and air travel.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?

STAR WARS. And the ice skating anime!

16. What song will always remind you of 2015?

A *lot* of songs, because this year was the year I suddenly cared about music. Stevie Nicks and Don Henley's 'Leather and Lace' might be the stand-out, though. Or Halsey's 'Hold Me Down'.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
i. happier or sadder? Happier, but only because I had a slightly better time with winter depression and then I came home to the sun for christmas.
ii. thinner or fatter? fatter
iii. richer or poorer? Richer, but i have more large expenses coming up.

18. What do you wish you'd done more of?

Cooking actual food instead of eating out.

19. What do you wish you'd done less of?

Having controversial opinions on Tumblr

20. How did you spend Christmas?


21. How will you be spending/ did you spend New Year's?

At the parental abode. We had one of Mum-s friends for dinner, and went to see the local kiddie fireworks, and then I stayed up doing memes.

22. Did you fall in love in 2015?

Ask me that in five years.

23. How many one-night stands?


24. What was your favorite TV program(s)?

SO HAVE I MENTIONED YURI!!! ON ICE? Because suddenly I care about anime now. This is the first time in a very long time that I've consumed a media where I have no genre knowledge and no access to the source language. It's been a wild ride.

25. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?

No, but I like some people less.

26. What was the best book you read?

I think that might be Hutcheon & Flynn, 'A Theory of Adaptation'.

27. What was your greatest musical discovery?

Gillian Welch, perhaps? I didn't fixate on one of her songs, but I acquired and loved several albums.

28. What did you want and get?

The sense that I can finish my PhD.

29. What did you want and not get?

Magic brain cures.

30. What was your favorite film of this year?

Uhmm... Carol, perhaps?

31. What did you do on your birthday?

Nothing much, except for being annoyed that so many people thought doing nothing much on my birthday was sad.

32. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?

Aside from magic brain cures, nothing much. Perhaps a really good housemate/cohabitation buddy, but being solo is better than having miscellaneous housemates.

33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2013?


34. What kept you sane?

Did fandom keep me sane or make it worse? Who knows.

35. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?

Oscar Isaac, apparently. Not sure how that happened.

36. What political issue stirred you the most?

Oh god don't EVEN.

37. Who did you miss?

Kayloulee. Katie. Kristen. People whose names begin with K, apparently. (I said this last year and it still stands)

38. Who was the best new person you met?

Maybe some of my new fandom buddies - deputychairman and bomberqueen17 both stand out. Or new academic twitter pals - the individual known as T.S. Wingard is pretty spiffy.

39. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2016:

All those years of obscure nerding pay off. I mean. Most of the great academic stuff I did this year is just repurposed fannishness; and half the things my boss asked me to add to my work were things I already know of as fandom phenomena.

40. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:
This is pretty hard to do - it feels like the first half of 2016 is so sharply divided from the second.
Try the Mountain Goats: "People might laugh at your tattoos; when they do get new ones in completely garish hues"
highlyeccentric: A photo of myself, around 3, "reading" a Miffy book (Read Miffy!)
2016-12-31 12:36 pm
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2016 book meme

2015 meme.

How many books read in 2016? According to Goodreads, 110. Aka, Quite A Few.

Fiction:Nonfiction ratio: 82:28 (the nonfiction category includes poetry, plays, issues of Meanjin, and work reading - plus there was plenty of work reading I didn't log at all)

Gender breakdown of authors: 21 by solo or collaborating male authors; 6 mixed-gender collections or magazine issues edited by men; one M&F co-edited collection; 1 mixed gender collection edited by a person of some variety of genderqueer that I can't easily determine (Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore edited a collection mostly about gay men, positions self as an insider among that community, but writes under a name originally used for drag; I can't find a recent piece authoritatively assigning any pronouns to them); 3 books by genderqueer authors; 2 all-woman collections; 75 books by solo or collaborating female authors.

So, still heavily skewed toward the ladies! A bit sad that the male-edited collections are mostly Auslit magazines or anthologies.

At this point last year I did a rough count of definitively non-white authors. Once again this is tricky: do I count which authors are white *in my context* or in theirs? I know Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick wrote of herself as white, but it would seem weird to count Ben Aaronovitch as white. CS Pacat is Aussie-Greek and emphatically declares herself as not white, but that makes it feel even weirder not to count Eve KS! Plus there are cases where... counting Banana Yoshimoto seems different to Ken Lui. One is a successful author in the majority culture of her native language, one is writing from an anglophone minority position. But the latter is writing in the globally dominant language and the other occupying the niche of 'foreign translations'.

Anyway, it only comes to 12 (excluding Eve KS and one US author whose bio says she was born in Jerusalem but about whom I know nothing else). And five of those books were by the same person. So only two more than last year. Some of the edited collections contained a good diverse representation, but as far as I know all the editors were white. Hmm. Note to self, improve on that score.

Favourite Book Read, subdivided:

Non-fiction for personal interest: Maybe Eve KS's 'Epistemology of the Closet'? That crosses the boundary between work and personal. Otherwise, the re-read of Holding the Man
Academic reading: Hutcheon & Flynn 'A Theory of Adaptation'. OH WOW so much wow.
Fiction for fun: Hard to say. I read a lot this year - most notably my rapid discovery of some really cool indie romance lines. That means though that few individual books stand out. I think the credit goes to Ken Liu's The Paper Menagerie, that was a really amazing short story collection.

Least Favourite: 'Summer's End' by Harper Bliss was a spectacularly meh romance novel.

Oldest book read: Excluding various medieval primary sources, I think that's Henry James' 'The Portrait of a Lady'

Newest book read: Excluding the issues of Meanjin, I think the book read most quickly on the heels of its publication date might have been the 'The Force Awakens' novelisation, and the latest released in the year was Kris Ripper's 'The Queer and the Restless'.

Longest Book Title: That would appear to be 'Fatherhood and its Representations in Middle English Texts' (Rachel Moss)

Shortest Title: Banana Yoshimoto, 'Kitchen' (Ursula Veron's 'Nurk' doesn't count, it has a subtitle)

How many re-reads? Only seven

Most books read by one author in the year? 8 novels or novellas by KJ Charles (via Samhain ebooks)

Any in translation? Banana Yoshimot's 'Kitchen' (and the // edition of La Manekine, I guess)

How many were from the library? Not enough.
highlyeccentric: A woman in an A-line dress, balancing a book on her head, in front of bookshelves (Make reading sexy)
2016-01-02 03:15 pm
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End of Year Book Meme

For some reason I feel like books read were even bigger figures than usual in my life this year. Possibly because I have really struggled to care about my thesis. Maybe because I didn't really go head over heels for any media fandoms until Star Wars in December. Maybe because I spent a lot of time on planes. Who knows?

Anyway, I swear I used to do a book meme, but I can't find it, so I've taken a list of qs from Catherine Pope.

How many books read in 2015? According to goodreads, 87 books. Well, it says 86 but I only just filed one of my academic books, it hasn't updated yet. I don't file all my academic reading on there, but that's a good enough barometer.

Fiction:Nonfiction ratio: Huh, I'll have to count this one up. 71:16, but again, I don't log all my academic non-fiction. And some which I do I haven't read cover-to-cover, so that's a bit fuzzy.

Male:Female author ratio: 20 male : 2 m&f coauthored : 65 female (of which one now IDs as genderqueer, but was IDing as a butch woman at time of publication; three are woman-edited collections including work or substantial interview material from some men, all of which I think were likely queer men, and some non-binary people)

I... had not realised my reading list is so heavily skewed to women! That makes me want to track my academic reading more assiduously, as it would tip the balance back - but I'm not sure it would be enough to produce the usual majority of dudes.

On the other hand I only counted five authors I know to be non-white (six if you include Melina Marchetta, which for this purpose I reckon you should, because of how race politics in Australia are not the same as the US), plus two or three who I have a feeling might be Jewish but don't know for sure.

Favourite Book Read:
Ooohkay let's subdivide this:

Non-fiction for personal interest: Maybe Polikoff, 'Beyond Straight (and Gay) Marriage' - it put into (now slightly out of date) words a lot of things qualms I have with the marriage movement.
Academic reading: hum. Rosenwein, 'Emotional Communities in the Early Middle Ages', maybe? I didn't even list that one on goodreads until I was answering this. Oops.
Fiction for fun: I think the two Renaults from the Alexander trilogy, Fire from Heaven and The Persian Boy, take the biscuit.

Least Favourite: Dawn French's 'Dear Sylvia' is an awful book that should feel bad.

Oldest book read: Excluding various medieval primary sources, you mean? Looks like it was Emily of New Moon, pub 1923.

Newest book read: If you mean read most quickly on the heels of its publication date, that would be the two New Smut Project compilations in early April (publ late March). The book released latest in the year was... I was going to say The Shepherds Crown (publ August, read October), but, embarrassingly, it was one of the Riptide romance e-books, Stuck Landing. It was a pretty good read, too. Totally worth the nine dollars or whatever it cost.

Longest Book Title: I had thought this would be academic, but no, it was The One Hundred Year Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window And Disappeared.

Shortest Title: David Auburn, Proof

How many re-reads? Sixteen, plus I think I mustn't have logged my audiobook re-read of Wolf Hall.

Most books read by one author in the year? This was the year of Kerry Greenwood, apparently. Ten all up, most of them while travelling.

Any in translation? I think only The One Hundred Year Old Man Who Climbed Out The Window And Disappeared.

How many were from the library? Not enough. Plenty of the not-logged academic reading, of course. Of the ones I logged, only three, and one of those I subsequently purchased. The uni's english lit collection does not meet my requirements for leisure reading, I'm afraid, and I refuse to pay to use the American church's library (I could spend that eighty bucks on, oh, books!)
highlyeccentric: road sign: car eaten by monster (pic#320259)
2015-02-13 09:35 am
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This post brought to you by the letter R

Letter R given to me by [personal profile] nanila. It is quite a difficult letter.

Something I hate: Recidivism! No really I just wanted to use that word it's such a good word.

Something I love: Raclette? Raclette is not as much my true love as is fondue, but I love me some cheese-based winter foods.

Somewhere I've been: Rotterdam airport? It's the airport for the Hague and I used it to get to [personal profile] niamh_sage's place christmas 2013.

Somewhere I'd like to go: I've already got tickets to Reykjavik at Easter!

Someone I know: ... I am having trouble thinking of anyone as the letter R connotes [personal profile] monksandbones's thesis supervisor to me. I haven't met her but I follow her on twitter?

A film I like: I went to a list of movies starting with R and the first two I recognised were 'Rachel Getting Married' and 'RED'. RED I wholeheartedly adore: how could you NOT love anything with Helen Mirren in a ballgown with a big gun? I'd forgotten about Rachel Getting Married (2008), but it was quite an interesting movie - a young woman gets weekend release from rehab to attend her sister's wedding, and finds herself back in the middle of family drama and despite the fact that this is her first time seeing them for ages, *she's not the centre of attention*. It was very interesting and sympathetically characterised and probably a better movie, objectively speaking, than RED. But it did not have Helen Mirren in a ballgown with a big gun.
highlyeccentric: Dessert first - pudding in a teacup (Dessert first)
2014-11-17 12:07 pm
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It would be very good for me to talk about something other than my to-do list and my breakup. I can't possibly do 30 posts, but please to be giving me 4-6 prompts. Be aware that if you ask something TMI I might answer it under access locks.

highlyeccentric: Teacup - text: while there's tea there's hope (while there's tea there's hope)
2013-12-19 10:32 am
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December Meme - Tea

As per [personal profile] redsnake05, my 'favourite tea-drinking rituals and things'.

I must confess, I did not grow up a ritualistic tea-drinker. Although one notable family tea tradition is the putting on of the kettle just before the absent parent is expectd home, while declaring that the boiling of the kettle will summon him/her home. It only very slowly dawned on me that this worked not because of the parent-summoning powers of tea, nor because of sheer luck, but thanks to the tea-making parent's finely tuned sense of timing.

If left to my own devices, until recently, I drank teabags. I've not grown up a tea snob, although my other half in undergrad college was a leaf tea afficionado. In Sydney, [personal profile] kayloulee and I discovered The Tea Centre and its wonderful flavoured blends, which is what started me on my current fancy-tea binge.

Right now I have three leaf teas open in my kitchen: a Madura English Breakfast, which was my undergrad other half's favourite leaf. Madura occupy a price point just below Twinings, in Australia (this will be relevant in a moment). I have a Whittards vanilla leaf blend, and a T2 French Earl Grey. All of these have been posted or lugged in from somewhere else, because Switzerland has a FREAKISHLY WIDE range of herbal teas (hemp, anyone?) but is pretty dull when it comes to actual tea.

At work, I have a delightful two-cup teapot with a ceramic strainer-cup in it. I have a Madura standard blend leaf there, and a T2 Oolong, plus whatever teabags my officemate and I have collected (we just got rid of the herbal collection from previous office occupant). I had bought myself happy yellow teacups, but actually prefer to drink out of the plain white mug that was left by previous occupant.

Now, a thing that bugs me about tea. My English manfriend is a ridiculous tea snob (right down to only drinking India tea in the morning and China in the afternoons - who DOES that?). My officemate and adjacent boss are quite into tea. I have been collecting fancy tea like nobody's business. Right now, fancy tea is something... luxury, I guess, that's cheaper than most luxuries, and which can be easily sent to me as gifts. I can share it with other people and still have plenty left over for tomorrow. So I'm spending more money on tea than I might otherwise, and asking my parents to send me fancy tea, and so on.

Perhaps because of this - because luxury tea is a coping mechanism for tight financial circumstances, to me - I am constantly, gratingly, aware of how much tea snobbery is a product of class, and how much that varies by country. It's not a simple cut-and-dried question of quality. I have never heard an Australian dismiss Twinings as 'builers' tea, although many might sniff about teabags. Many might prefer luxury tea-store blends, but of the supermarket ones, Twinings occupies the highest price-point. Twinings was *too fancy* for my family, growing up. Sometimes a box of twinings leaf might be mixed through with Nerada (a cheaper Australian brand).

In Switzerland, anglophones are glad to see Twinings because there isn't much better available, although my colleagues still sigh an bring back teabags from Ireland when they can. Still, 'oh good, you have Twinings' is a tea-lover's comment here.

I quite happily drank Bushell's Blue Label teabags every morning for years. I *think* now I'm starting to see what Dr J means by 'twinings is too oily', but let's be honest, I could be imagining it. I've never heard an Australian sniff about Twinings being inferior - and I doubt that's because our teas are inferior (Madura satisfies Dr J's requirements), but because flukes of marketing and import patterns and so on have given it the highest supermarket cachet. That's all there is to it. (And FYI, the new Woolworths prestige own-label tea is just fine. I can't say the same about the UK Co-op fair trade assam, but it's pitched as HIGHER prestige than the comparable Woollies tea in Australia.)

Tea. I love it. But my god it's got class issues all over it. And that's without even getting into global fair trade ethics.

This has been this week's installment of December Meme! Pls to be providing one last prompt!

Week 1- Poetry as per [personal profile] majoline
Week 2- Fibonacci Interests, as per [personal profile] jjhunter
Week 3- Tea, as per [personal profile] redsnake05
Week 4-
highlyeccentric: Monty Python - knights dancing the Camelot Song (Camelot song)
2013-12-12 09:11 pm
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December Meme - a tour of my interests list

Which is, I must say, not terribly up-to-date. [personal profile] jjhunter asked for a Fibbonaci Sequence tour of my DW interests (1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8 etc). So that's what you get!

1. 19th century: I like 19th century stuff! It's not my academic field but it's a great period to take historical or literary breaks in. I have a particular fondness for 19th century feminism, especially late 19th c. Australian activists and writers. And an especially particular soft spot for Louisa MacDonald and her odd, butch, novel-writing, medicine-studying, bicycle-riding, politics-talking companion Evelyn Dickinson.

2. A Place to Call Home: was a DELIGHTFUL Australian drama series which screened in 2013. Set in the aftermath of WWII, in a country NSW town. Starring Our Heroine, Sarah, a widowed Jewish-by-marriage nurse with a career and a right hook to be wary of. Starring James, closeted queer, and his wife Olivia. Starring matriarch Elizabeth, stone cold bitch and complex human. Also many other exciting characters! And ANGST AND WOE. I'm hoping they tone down the 'new angst every episode' thing and really dig into the issues they've raised, next season.

3. Anglo-Saxons: is one term for the English before 1066 (and after, if you need to distinguish between an Anglo-Norman and an Anglo-Saxon). I like this period, too! It's not my speciality field anymore, but it was at one stage. I like the English benedictine reformers and their earnest ideals; I like Archbishop Wulfstan and his conniving, Viking-lovin' ways. I like the tendency to sanctify their royalty, resulting in dynasties of saints. Also I like that an entire genre, the elegy or lament, can be summed up as "I'm all alone in a (boat / underground chamber / foreign land / etc) and I have no friends".

Atheism, chocolate, transport, Germanic languages, etc )

This has been this week's installment of December Meme! Pls to be proving two more prompts.

Week 1- Poetry as per [personal profile] majoline
Week 2- Fibonacci Interests, as per [personal profile] jjhunter
Week 3-
Week 4-
highlyeccentric: The Marauders (shoebox project) (Marauders)
2013-12-03 04:30 pm
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Topic Meme - December

I do not have time to do the topic-per-day meme (good example here), but will take four prompts for the month! Tell me something I should talk about and what week I should talk it in.

Week 1 -
Week 2 -
Week 3 -
Week 4 -

Comments @DW only. NSFW prompts allowed but response will be filtered appropriately.
highlyeccentric: Me, in a costume viking helmet - captioned Not A Viking Helmet (not a viking)
2011-11-28 01:39 pm
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Alas, a meme

Via many people:

Your job is now your Time Lord name. The last digit of your phone number is the current regeneration you are in. The nearest clothing item to your right is now the most notable item in your current wardrobe. The last person you texted is your current companion. Your favorite word is now your catchphrase.

I am the 9th regeneration of The Postgraduate. The nearest clothing item to my right would be... [personal profile] kayloulee's pink-and-brown cotton skirt? Which is currently on her. As she says, it's a good thing her skirt isn't hoiked up around her waist, or my Time Lord wardrobe would include my housemate's knickers.

Jon Jarrett is my Companion (I told him we should have an epic adventure in space!). And my catchphrase is... probably "discourse". Not that I like the word "discourse", you understand, but I like the horrible looks I get when I use it.
highlyeccentric: Sign on Little Queen St - One Way both directions (Default)
2009-07-29 06:29 pm
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Ages back Fahye gave me five words:

- curls
Uh. Well, I have them. I hated them for years. All I wanted in life was straight black hair, and what I had is a fuzzy golden halo. At some point in my teens I realised that actually, the rest of the world wants blonde curls (or did. This was before black dye and straighteners became commonplace); I don't have to do much to look after them, and people check me out simply on the basis of the hair.
When I got to Canberra, I looked at my hair and thought "hmm, it is not curly enough". Having money to actually pay for a decent hairdresser, I ended up with short springy curls and I love them. They've sort of grown out at the moment, but I do intend to get it cut again.
- Chaucer
I have not read very much Chaucer. The Book of the Duchess is the only poem I've read right through. It's a pretty cool poem. The Black Knight describes his lost love as fattish, and fleshy, but not greet therewith. HOW AWESOME IS THAT? Ok, not all that awesome, really, because it's in the middle of a fifteen-line dissection of her perfect body, piece by piece like a puzzle or an ornament, and it must've been just as difficult to remain fattish, and fleshy but not greet therewith as it is to be thin-but-not-skinny-and-with-appropriate-curvature these days. I wrote a pretty dull essay on Duchess, but I would sort of like to go back and write interesting gender theory about it instead.
- Narnia
Oh, Narnia. I have a love-hate relationship with Professor Lewis, but I do love Narnia. Saved my sanity last year, and POOTLE to my shrink for implying that fandom is a non-constructive way of dealing with stress.
- chocolate
- bounce
I am sometimes bouncy? I like to think of myself as bouncy. I'm bouncy if you ask me about medieval poetry... :) But I to be bouncy like a big bright children's ball, not one of those crazy ones which go clattering off walls and things.

Let me know if you want some wordses :)
highlyeccentric: Sheer Geekiness, unfortunately - I just think this stuff is really cool (phd comics) (Sheer Geekiness)
2009-06-14 09:57 pm
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The lucybot tagged me...

1. Grab the nearest book.

2. Open the book to page 54.

3. Find the seventh sentence.

4. Post the text of the sentence in your journal...along with these instructions.

Uh, well. I have three books equidistant from my computer. To my immediate left, we have:

Everyone had rushed outside to have a look.
From - Evil Genius, by Catherine Jinks, which I bought for three bucks from a guy at work and haven't read yet.

Next is:

2. Fill in the appropriate endings or contractions.
From - the German grammar workbook I picked up in Abbeys yesterday. The seventh sentence happens to be in English, boo.

and directly in front of me:

The audience howled with laughter
From - The Giver, Lois Lowry. Not a cheerful book.
highlyeccentric: Sign on Little Queen St - One Way both directions (theses will eat me)
2008-10-18 04:29 pm
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Need distraction!

But distraction which isn't heavily complex. So let's play a meme which I nicked from [livejournal.com profile] fahye :

Ask me about my icons. And I will tell you. And then you go and put this in you LJ, and I and other people  will ask you about your icons. You savvy?

highlyeccentric: Sign on Little Queen St - One Way both directions (up to no good)
2007-12-03 01:30 pm
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Unfinished Meme

Oops. I just realised I forgot to round off the Earliest Memories Meme with instructions and taggings:

1. Describe your earliest memory where the memory is clear, and where "clear" means you can depict at least three details;
2. Give an estimate of your age at the time;
3. Tag five other bloggers with this meme. (Or just extend an open invitation)

So, there you go. If you want to tell us about your earliest memory, go nuts. But [livejournal.com profile] kayloulee, [livejournal.com profile] phrasemuffin, Jennifer Lynn Jordan (use whichever blog you prefer), [livejournal.com profile] rxgra and [livejournal.com profile] mangelbojangel, I want to hear yours. :)
highlyeccentric: Sign on Little Queen St - One Way both directions (waltrot)
2007-11-29 09:59 pm
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Such very appropriate resolutions...

gakked from [livejournal.com profile] daiskmeliadorn

In 2008, highlyeccentric resolves to...
Lose ten pens by March.
Take daiskmeliadorn thinking.
Take evening classes in tolkien.
Backup my grammar regularly.
Find a new wulfstan.
Get back in contact with some old gargoyles.

Get your own New Year's Resolutions:

each and every one of those things I would happily do, and many of them I am in fact going to do. The only one I'm definitely NOT going to do is evening classes in tolkien... there WAS an evening course which studied Tolkien last semester, but I did not take it.
highlyeccentric: Sign on Little Queen St - One Way both directions (Tonks)
2007-11-29 08:44 pm
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Earliest Memories Meme

Melanie Duckworth has tagged me for this meme, for reason of it being my birthday. (Said birthday was actually earlier in the month, but as I got a birthday present yesterday, it still counts.)

My earliest memory is of the Duck Man. Unlike most of my early memories, I have no photograph to prompt it, and while I can remember the story being discussed afterwards, it wasn't one of those great family legends.

The Duck Man was a workmate of my father, and we were living in Wagga. So I would have been around about two at the time. The Duck Man had been invited over, possibly for dinner, and was being taken around the house in the usual welcome tour. He was introduced to my room, where I had a free-standing wardrobe. I don't remember the details of the house at all; my mind fills in the memory with the image of our house in Perth, but I know that's not native to the memory, since in Perth said wardrobe belonged to my brother.

This wardrobe had a large yellow duck on it. The Duck Man, as you do when faced with a curly-haired toddler on the one hand and a picture of a large yellow duck on the other, crouched down to my level and asked me if I knew what noises ducks make. I think I answered with "quack".

No, said the Duck Man. That's not the noises ducks make. And he proceeded to make duck noises. I imitated said duck noises. I can still make duck noises, and take great delight in doing so on request.

For those curious, duck noises sound like "squrbsqurbsqurb", and are made by
*pursing your lips
*pressing the tip of your tongue against your lower teeth, and the back of your tongue against the roof of your mouth
then the air passes between the sides of your tongue and your teeth/cheek. The sound is modulated by flexing the side of your tongue and making fake-kissing sort of movements with your lips.

I can only assume this particular memory has stuck with me because the wardrobe-with-duck provided the visual cue, and its presence gave me reason to remember how to make duck noises.
highlyeccentric: Sign on Little Queen St - One Way both directions (Default)
2007-10-27 03:22 pm
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Gift Meme

This Meme has been doing the rounds of the blogs I read. I've been regarding it with passive interest, until Jennifer Lyn Jordan decided to get in on the act and promise Medieval Stick Puppets to the five lucky gift recipients on her blog. Naturally, I couldn't pass up an opportunity like that.

So, here is a MEME. I will participate in it. You want an as-yet utterly unidentified present? Post here! We'll sort out contact and mailing details once i have my five people figured out.

By the end of the calendar year*, I will send a tangible, physical gift to each of the first five people to comment here. The catch? Each person must make the same offer on her/his blog.
*Since it's October already, I'm going to Change The Rules. If you post here, I will have your present in the post by the time I start uni for 2008- so, by late febuary/early march. It will probably be earlier, but that will depend on things like whether or not i get a summer job, and how difficult it is to find presents, and whereabouts you live. But never fear, you will get a present.

If you don't want a present and/or don't want to have to send presents of your own, you can help me out by suggesting which medieval character Jenn should stick-puppet for me.
Wulfstan is a possibility, of course. But the Wife said she was buying me a Wulfstan teddy bear (or has that plan been scratched since she decided I needed more and sexier underwear?).
What about Judith? Judith is cool.
Or what about the cute little monsters with the enormous ears? Would one of them count as a "character"?
As you can see, it is a Grand Decision. Help me out with it!