Tunes for a Monday Morning

Nov. 24th, 2014 07:48 am
[syndicated profile] terriwindling_feed

Posted by Terri Windling

It's a misty early morning here on Dartmoor, so here's some bright alt-folk music to call to the sun and brush the cobwebs away....

The tunes above and below are by Bad Anna, a wonderful band that grew out of the award-winning Welsh folk trio Uiscedwr -- consisting of Cormac Byrne (percussion), Anna Esslemont (fiddle, vocals), Jenny Esslemont (backing vocals), Stuart McCallum (guitar), and Nick Waldock (bass). The group was short-lived, but a dazzling performance was recorded at the Shrewsbury Folk Festival in 2011.

The songs here were all composed by band's violinist, Anna Esslemont, written in the aftermath of a bone marrow transplant and a six year battle with rare auto-immune disease Aplastic Anaemia. Above is "The Warning," about a particularly malevolent kind of witch; and below is "Broken."


"The Stranger," a poignant song also performed at the Shrewbury Folk Festival.

And last:

An earlier recording of Esslemont, Byrne, and Waldock in their Uiscedwr days, performing in Germany 2010. The song is their version of Julie Miller's "Forever My Beloved." 

The Trend for Concrete in the House

Nov. 24th, 2014 07:00 am
[syndicated profile] deardesigner_feed

Posted by deardesigner

I never thought I’d see the day but I’m warming to the idea of using concrete inside the house.

I won’t be getting out the cement mixer just yet but I can now appreciate the raw beauty of a polished concrete floor. The cool smoothness of anything, in this most utilitarian of  surfaces is beginning to filter into my consciousness. And one day, I will be craving a concrete bathtub or a concrete work surface. One day.

Concrete Kitchen via Elle Deco

Floor, wall, and kitchen island. All in polished concrete. It should look hard and cold but that’s not the case. The use of solid black cupboards, shelves and fridge manage to save it from grey drabness. The coordinating pendant lights and stools take it up a notch too to ultra cool. I like it.

Concrete in the Bathroom via

Who wouldn’t like a bathroom this cool? The clinical white walls and concrete sink are the epitome of  minimalist living but the basket of towels also make it inviting and comfortable. Note the concrete light fitting too. Is there no end of this materials usefulness?

Concrete shelves via Design Milk

Now you might think that concrete shelves and glass and china is a disaster waiting to happen. It might be the case but it does look amazing. I’d love a kitchen, or better yet a larder, where everything is to hand.

Concrete walls via Architectural Digest

Concrete and wood is a match made in heaven. Eminently suitable as a fire surround, the concrete also looks kind of decorative framed by wood. The extra texture in the chairs and rug also make this room warm to look at and dare I say, even cosy.

Concrete walls in the bedroom via boconcept

Even in the bedroom, an industrial looking wall can be juxtaposed with a leather headboard, a knitted throw and a shaggy rug to look inviting and modern all at the same time.

What do you think of concrete in interiors?


Built site specific inducted

Nov. 24th, 2014 06:58 am
[syndicated profile] languagelog_feed

Posted by Mark Liberman

Macaulay Curtis writes: "This one isn't a headline, but it is mightily hard to parse. From a construction site in Brisbane, Australia. I walked past it in confusion every day for a week before realising that the company is called 'Built'…"

Knowing the company name doesn't solve the problem for me. Instances of the pattern NOUN-specific are perfectly good modifiers, which can be used either predicatively or attributively:

Scale construction must be domain specific and contextualized
A host of gender specific factors are relevant here

And since "Built site" is a perfectly good nominal, there would be no problem with "These regulations are Built site specific" or whatever.

But "Built site specific inducted"? Either I've completely missed the intended structure, or the person who wrote this sign has a grammatical construction that I've missed out on.


Daily Happiness

Nov. 23rd, 2014 11:16 pm
torachan: a chibi drawing of sawko, kazehaya, and maru from kimi ni todoke (sawako/kazehaya)
[personal profile] torachan
1. New Simpsons, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, and Bob's Burgers tonight! :D (All my favorite shows are on the same day now...)

2. Found out I have Thanksgiving day off for sure. (And it's paid, yay.) We're going to have dinner here and Alexander is coming over.

3. We're going to see Big Hero 6 tomorrow. I'm looking forward to it!

Dead-end sentences

Nov. 23rd, 2014 11:37 pm
[syndicated profile] languagelog_feed

Posted by Mark Liberman

Tim Leonard sends in "one for your hard-to-parse-headlines file": Tim Worstall, "The EU's Very Bad Turn $26 Billion Into $390 Billion Investment Plan", Forbes 11/23/2014. Tim observes that it's "not really a garden path, since it hits a dead end less than half way in".

Puzzled headline-parsers will get a clue from Mr. Worstall's opening:

Herr Juncker, the head of the European Commission, is about to announce a plan whereby the EU puts $26 billion or so into an investment fund which is then geared up with private money to amount to a $390 billion fund that will revolutionise the European economy, light the flames of the white heat of technology and so drearily on. Sadly, the plan is based upon a simple misconception. It’s possible that there’s a case for public investment in a number of areas: there are such things as public goods, after all. It’s also possible that there’s a case for greater private investment in certain areas: that is how the economy advances, after all. But there’s no case at all for trying to make those public investments, potentially in public goods, on private sector terms […]

In other words, the headline's structure is "The EU's MODIFIER1 MODIFIER2 Investment Plan", where MODIFIER1 is "Very Bad", and MODIFIER2 is "Turn $26 Billion Into $390 Billion".

Richard Sproat and I briefly discussed such phrasal modifiers — often verb phrases, as in this case — in "Stress and Structure of Modified Noun Phrases in English", pp. 131-181 in Lexical Matters, Sag and Szabolsci, Eds. University of Chicago Press., 1992.  There's no digital version of this book, alas, and I don't have access to my copy since I'm traveling, but I do remember one of our examples:

… an old-fashioned white-shoe do-it-on-the-golf-course banker …

Aside from under-hyphenation, the Forbes headline suffers from several unhelpful lexical or syntactic ambiguities. For example, turn could be a nouns, with "The EU's Very Bad Turn" leading us into the first dead end. I then backed up and tried again on the theory that "The EU's Very Bad" were some designated group of banksters, who were spinning $26 billion up into some sort of Enron-like scam. But not so.

The obligatory screen shot:


Another drabble post

Nov. 24th, 2014 06:04 am
vass: Me kissing rat (Kisses)
[personal profile] vass
Posted as a second chapter to the first drabble post.


Ship and Kalr Twelve discuss ratpiles. Except with humans. Sometimes I miss having pet rats. But then Beatrice jumps up and sleeps on me, and my rats never did that, and I wasn't small enough to crawl into their hammock with them.
otw_staff: Claudia, OTW Communications Co-Chair (Claudia)
[personal profile] otw_staff posting in [community profile] otw_news

Planning to shop? You can donate to the OTW at no cost to you by using Amazon US. Find out how & spread the news!
cimorene: (workout)
[personal profile] cimorene
We've been having trouble with the networked printer, so I put the laptop next to the printer and plugged it directly in to print.

Then I booted Windows...

...and a few minutes later at 4:30 my phone alarm went off with a check email reminder...

and 10 minutes after that it was 4:40 and Windows was still thinking. Chrome was blank, informing me that Gmail failed to load on the first try, and notification bubbles were informing me that the antivirus software had updated itself, that Windows had updated itself, and that to complete further 'critical' updates it wanted to restart. I reloaded Gmail, went to Google Drive, grabbed the top document in the list and clicked 'print'.

At 4:43, it still hadn't printed.

In contrast, when I wake up in the morning I hit the power button on my computer, go in the kitchen and put the kettle on and go to the bathroom, then pour the water in the teapot and put it by my computer to brew. In the time it takes the kettle to boil my computer has produced its login screen. I sign in and go back to the kitchen to make a bowl of oatmeal, and when I return in under 2 minutes, my desktop is all loaded and glowing peacefully. I click on Twitter and Firefox and they both open immediately, the latter with all 15ish of my saved tabs ready and waiting.

If I were using the Windows 7 laptop for my primary computer, I could hit the power button first thing and still not be past the "Welcome" screen when I got back with my oatmeal. And once I logged in, I'd have time to eat the whole bowl before I got to see my tabs.

Sunday Sweets: Cake of the Doctor

Nov. 23rd, 2014 02:00 pm
[syndicated profile] cakewrecks2_feed

Posted by Jen

Happy Doctor Who Day, everyone! Come get some CAKE!

(By Sweet Dream Cake Company)

Gotta kick things off with the world's most famous blue box, and this one is a whopping four feet tall!


I wanted to show off more than just the TARDIS, though, so here are some sweet Who villains to liven up the party:

(By Happy Occasions Cakes)

A Cake Cyberman? Now THAT is an upgrade.


But I'd still be willing to exterminate this Dalek...

(By Mike's Amazing Cakes)




If you have to make a cake of the Doctor's most terrifying villain, then I say, turn the Doctor into a bunny rabbit! That way the cute will even out the scary, like so:

(Also by Mike's Amazing Cakes)

Don't blink - 'cuz that bunny Who is too sweet to miss!


Careful, though; I think the Weeping Angel is peeking:



Do you believe in delicious irony?

(By Eat the Evidence)

Because eating a cakey adipose is wrong in all the right ways.


And not a villain at all, but check out this outstanding Ood!

(By That Little Cake Boutique for Wibbly Wobbly Cakey Bakers)

I hear his translation sphere even lights up!


Of course, we can't celebrate Doctor Who without the Time Lord himself:

(By Pink Cake Box)

As dashing as Eleven looks, I can't get over the open TARDIS door. WOW.


And here's one with homages to both Ten & Eleven:

(By Un Jeu d'Enfant)

Bow ties and fezzes and 3D glasses, oh my!


I love that the good Doctor is popping up in more themed weddings these days. Check out the oh-so-elegant Gallifreyan writing on this beauty:

(By Nom Nom Sweeties)


And here's John's favorite: an explosion of color with lots of Whovian surprises!

(By Artisan Cake Company)

I spy an adipose, an angel, and an ambushing Dalek!


And for the hardcore fans, let's see how much of this next one you recognize!

(By Delicious Snackies)

I see the fourth Doctor's scarf, a Time Lord's medallion, the crack in time (so cool), roses, Gallifreyan text, and I *think* that's a sonic screwdriver and the Master's pocket watch on top. WOWZA.

(Hit the link for more pics of the bottom tier; did anyone translate it yet?)


And finally, a gorgeous pop of classic colors and great design:

(By Cake Central member Emilsmee)

Love that bold red outlining, and the hand-painted tier of the famous Van Gogh "exploding TARDIS" is just perfect!


Hope you enjoyed today's Timey Wimey treats, everyone! No go forth, and be wibbly wobbly!

Be sure to check out our Sunday Sweets Directory to see which bakers in your area have been featured here on Sweets!


Thank you for using our Amazon links to shop! USA, UK, Canada.

Thoughts on the final episode

Nov. 23rd, 2014 11:44 am
[syndicated profile] poirot_fans_feed

Posted by newmoonstar

So Curtain finally aired in the US. I'm sad to say I was very disappointed with this one too. I wrote a long post about it, if anyone's interested. It's not so much a proper review as me trying to sort out my feelings about it. I wouldn't usually bother, but it's the last one, so I think some meta and reflection on the show isn't inappropriate at this point.

Over here at my journal. Fair warning that it's very emotional and contains spoilers.

it's a love meme

Nov. 22nd, 2014 11:06 pm
boxofdelights: (Default)
[personal profile] boxofdelights
A thing I did not know about [personal profile] kaberett's it's a love meme is that screening comments would make comment notifications not work. But that is okay, because I before I put my name up I asked myself, "Self, if you ask for reassurance and nobody answers, are you going to be okay?" and I answered myself, "Yep." But I got all these wonderful comments, from old friends and new friends and a complete stranger!

I'm watching Take This Waltz again. It's even better the second time. Free (but not ad-free) on Hulu for one more day.

Topolect writing

Nov. 23rd, 2014 05:22 am
[syndicated profile] languagelog_feed

Posted by Victor Mair

This is an interesting question raised by the Writing Chinese project at Leeds.  Helen Wang mentioned it to me in the hope that I might be willing to share my thoughts.  I'll do Helen one better and share this with many others, in hopes that they too may be willing to share their thoughts.

I'd like to call to your attention this project at the University of Leeds.  It's about contemporary fiction from China.

They have a bookclub format – with a new book and author for discussion each month. It's intended to be inclusive and open to all.

Helen went along to a one-day event they organized on 1 November – very well-attended with a genuinely welcoming atmosphere, and a good discussion. They also have an online forum.

The author for November is Yan Ge, a young woman from Sichuan who tries to bring Sichuanese topolect/local expressions into her writing.

The online forum discussion started with this:

One question that came up in our bookclub discussions today on this chapter (and also in the masterclass last week) was the use of Sichuan dialect, or local slang. From a translator’s viewpoint, how do/should/can you deal with this?

On a broader but related topic, while in our Leeds group (unfortunately without any Chinese native speakers present) we could all discuss at length the notorious obsession in the UK with regional accents and related prejudices / stereotypes of class / backlashes against class etc etc, we couldn’t quite work out whether or not a Chinese readership is likely to have a similar response — what does it mean nowadays for a Chinese reader in, say, Beijing to read a story where characters speak in a Sichuan dialect?

and is currently asking:

I suppose the question I’m wondering about really is to what extent a Chinese reader reading 我们家 feels the local Sichuan flavour of the setting, and then what that implies in terms of cultural assumptions/stereotypes etc.

Two things I [VHM] never do:  refer to Sichuanese, Cantonese, Pekingese, Taiwanese, etc. as "dialects" or "slang" (the latter is especially demeaning).  I simply call them "topolects", which is a neutral designation for them and which is also an accurate translation of the Chinese term FANG1YAN2.

" The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th edition"   (11/14/12)

" Mutual intelligibility" (5/28/14)
(see the long list of posts linked at the bottom)

"What Is a Chinese “Dialect/Topolect”? Reflections on Some Key Sino-English Linguistic Terms," Sino-Platonic Papers, 29 (1991).

Also here and, for a complete lists of my LL posts dealing with topolects, see here.

See, as well, The Classification of Sinitic Languages: What is “Chinese”, which is a chapter from this book:

Breaking Down the Barriers: Interdisciplinary Studies in Chinese Linguistics and Beyond

[syndicated profile] languagelog_feed

Posted by Victor Mair

What would you think if you encountered terms like this?

Two-oriented Society

Three-zation / Threezation

You might wonder if the people who dreamed them up were high on something when they produced these opaque, unidiomatic renderings.  Yet such terms are official translations of Chinese expressions.  As such, they have entered the stream of global English.

The first item is the Chinglish rendering of liǎngxíng shèhuì 两型社会.  It refers to a "resource-conserving and environment-friendly society".

The second item is the Chinglish rendering of sānhuà 三化, which refers to "new industrialization, new urbanization, and agricultural modernization".

Here the "threezation" policy is linked to a "three-driven" strategy.

When I try to grapple with such Chinglish expressions, I experience a feeling of disorientation in my own language.  I get a similar feeling when I confront key concepts in North Korean ideology, such as the famous doctrine of Juche.  This seems pretty innocuous when rendered as "self-reliance", which is the usual translation, but I don't think that's what Kim Il-sung had in mind when he first pronounced this doctrine on December 28, 1955, which is why it is sometimes referred to as Kimilsungism.

Despite the fact that the North Koreans have tried, as much as possible, to purge their language of Sino-Koreanisms, this is a clear example of such vocabulary.  In Hangul, it would be written 주체, but in Chinese characters it is 主體.  In Mandarin, that would be pronounced zhǔtǐ and would have meanings such as these:  "subject; main body / part; principal part; mainstay".  In philosophical discourse, Juche would convey the idea of "subjectivity" or "agency".  In political parlance, however, Juche has the connotations of "self-reliance" and "independence".  But the North Koreans seem to have run with the term and put their own stamp on it to such a degree that I find it very difficult to grasp the meaning of Juche, much less render it into transparent English.

Summing up:

liǎngxíng shèhuì 两型社会 ("two-oriented society")

sānhuà 三化 ("threezation")

Juche 主體 (""subject[ivity]" –> "self-reliance" –> "independence" –> "Kimilsungism")

If such terms of political and intellectual discourse come to us with ready-made English renderings, should we go along with them, or should we provide our own more idiomatic and felicitous renderings for them?

Not to mention "running dog", "paper tiger", and many other Chinglishisms that are already firmly embedded in current English.

Cf. "Xinhua English and Zhonglish" (2/4/09)

"Hurt(s) the feelings of the Chinese people"(9/12/11)

"Chinese loans in English"  (7/10/13)

[Hat tip Tansen Sen]



Nov. 22nd, 2014 01:37 pm
[syndicated profile] languagelog_feed

Posted by Mark Liberman

Frazz continues to explore vocabulary and its measurement:

(no subject)

Nov. 22nd, 2014 11:42 pm
copracat: Maxwell Smart with the text 'My fandom talks to shoes' (shoes)
[personal profile] copracat
I've been catching up on reality dancing TV and had planned to make a post of videos of two of my favourite ever US Dancing With The Stars seasons: 4 with Joey Fatone and 7 with Lance Bass. Sadly, between the time I watched and decided on the dances I wanted and starting the post, the OP has taken them all down. Can you imagine my sad face?

2007 was the first year I watched Dancing With The Stars. Well, I say watched but really I just downloaded Joey and Kym's dances. Early 2007 was pretty all round miserable. Work was epicly shit, [ profile] thamiris died. Joey being a splendid showman and fabulous dancer was the bright spot of every week. Of course, when Lance did it the following year, in 2008, I had to d/l his dances as well.

I pretty much forgot about the show after that until I heard that Amber Riley was competing in 17. What a splendid season. What a star! And since then, I've been glued. Last year was exceptionally rewarding because I was deeply in love with Meryl, OMG. This year has delicious, delightful Janel Parrish who is perfect in every way and doing a super job.

Anyone else want to boggle at the differences between US DWTS and Strictly Come Dancing?

Daily Happiness

Nov. 22nd, 2014 12:24 am
torachan: maru the cat sitting in a bucket (maru)
[personal profile] torachan
1. Tomorrow and Sunday are my late days and then Monday I have off, so I get to sleep in three days in a row!

2. Looks like there's a cold going around my work as we've had a few people call in sick this week. (I really hope I don't get it, since I just had a cold like a month ago!) But thankfully even though we were short a cashier today, we had someone scheduled as a stocker who could also use the register, so she was able to take over and I didn't have to be at the register and could actually get stuff done.

3. I've been playing a lot of video games lately. In addition to the new Mario Kart levels, I've also been playing the remake of DuckTales on the Wii U and Link's Awakening and Professor Layton and the Diabolical Box on the 3DS. They're all a lot of fun! (I'm getting close to the end on both DuckTales and Link's Awakening, though.)


cimorene: (Default)

November 2014

2 3456 78
9 1011121314 15
161718 19202122

Style Credit

Page generated Nov. 24th, 2014 08:53 am
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags

Most Popular Tags