January 03 2014 @ 13:11
I just realised that I never posted here to wish you all 'Happy New Year', so...


In other news, for the writers among you'se...

I'm now running spacebigbang, so if you think you can manage a fic of at least 8,000 words set in space, please sign up.

to infinity and beyond...

Author sign-ups now open!
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July 19 2013 @ 23:38
Happy Birthday Madiba.
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January 14 2013 @ 17:23
I don't think many people are going to notice but I've done a friends cut. Most of the journals I culled were ones that had not been posted to in a long time. A few others were ones that seemed to be defunct as the reason for their creation has passed - for example, journals for LJ Idol.

If I have you friended on other social networks, please don't take being defriended here to mean I wish to defriend you everywhere. I just don't see the point of keeping journals that aren't being used for long periods of time on my list.

If you feel I removed you in error you are welcome to ask to be added back.
"Critics United" designate themselves the Guardians of Appropriate FF.N Content, bullying writers with vile comments, and dog-piling on the 'report' function to get fics they don't approve of removed.

Granted, some of the stories they've gone after may have violated an FF.N rule. However, using bullying and intimidation to harass fic writers is also against The Pit's TOS, which in true Pit fashion, is going unnoticed.

Personally, I've stayed the hell away from The Pit for years now. I just cannot be dealing with the continuing circle of wank related to that site. But I have to say, despite my opinions about the general quality of fic on FF.N, this is way out of line and it needs to stop.
Originally posted by moth2fic at More signal boosting for Internet Privacy.

Here's their next move: The Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act, or CISPA, would obliterate any semblance of online privacy in the United States.  AND DON'T THINK IT DOESN'T AFFECT YOU IF YOU LIVE ELSEWHERE!!  The knock on effects will be global.

And CISPA would provide a victory for content owners who were shell-shocked by the unprecedented outpouring of activism in opposition to SOPA and Internet censorship.

The House of Representatives is planning to take up CISPA later this month. Click here to ask your lawmakers to oppose it.

SOPA was pushed as a remedy to the supposed economic threat of online piracy -- but economic fear-mongering didn't quite do the trick.

So those concerned about copyright are engaging in sleight of hand, appending their legislation to a bill that most Americans will assume is about keeping them safe from bad guys.

This so-called cyber security bill aims to prevent theft of "government information" and "intellectual property" and could let ISPs block your access to websites -- or the whole Internet.

Don't let them push this back-door SOPA. Click here to demand that your lawmakers oppose CISPA.

CISPA also encourages companies to share information about you with the government and other corporations.

That data could then be used for just about anything -- from prosecuting crimes to ad placements.

And perhaps worst of all, CISPA supercedes all other online privacy protections.

Please click here to urge your lawmakers to oppose CISPA when it comes up for a vote this month.

Thanks for fighting for the Internet.

-Demand Progress

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As most of you may have noticed, with the latest code push - Release 91 - LJ has decided that cuts need to be highlighted with the following before them...

✂···  [+]* ( Cut Link Text Here )

* [Cut unfolder, if LJ Addons for Firefox installed.]

Yeah. Very pretty LJ. Not.

Anyway, this post is a 'how to' on getting rid of this fugliness.

Putting the scissors back in the drawer...where they belong...Collapse )
February 27 2012 @ 15:30
If you are going to do this, you need to do it before March 1st. It has been said that users will not be able to do anything about this after that date.

With reference to Google's policy changes and how everything you do with your Google account will be tied together into their super-cauldron of information, you will probably want to clear your Google Web History out - if you turned that feature on - before month's end. After that, you won't be able to clear it, and everything you search for will be connected with your account.

To check settings and/or clear out your Web History:

1. Go to Google. If you aren't signed in already, do so.
2. In the top right-hand corner you'll find your email address or name, perhaps an icon if you have a Plus account, and a little downward facing arrow. Click on the arrow and a menu will pop up.
3. Click to 'Account Settings'. This will take you to a page called 'Accounts'. (If you have a Plus account, you might go via a Plus sign-in page.)
4. Scroll down to a section called 'Services'. Here you'll find an option called 'View, enable, or disable web history', which has a link next to it. Click on the link.
5. If you never turned web history on, you'll get a page asking if you want to turn this service on. Just click 'No Thanks' and all is good. If you did turn it on, you should have a list of your searches. At the top there is a button that says 'Remove All History'. Click this and follow the instructions which will remove all items from your Web History and pause the feature so nothing else will be added in future.

Also, you can completely remove Web History as a service from your account by clicking THIS LINK, checking the tick-box and confirming you want to remove Web History. To be safe, it is probably best to do the steps above first to remove any history that might have already been collected.

Edit: I don't know if this will spread to the journals that have already posted (probably not) but with reference to the 'invalid' page upon clicking the link. I only just managed to replicate that and since I did not have the Web History service turned on for the account in question, I can only assume that you only get that page if there is no service to remove - most people who have reported it said they knew they didn't have the service turned on (this can easily be checked by going through the earlier steps to clear the history) - obviously you cannot remove something that isn't there, thus making the page redundant for that account.

December 21 2011 @ 13:00
Release 88.

Honestly, I can't believe LJ: a. thought these changes were a good idea, and b. made the changes despite the fact that when the details leaked, people told them in droves that they didn't want them.

Honestly, I'm not so bothered about the design. In fact, I kinda like it. However, there are a few things I don't...

1. Removing the comment subject...I rely on this in the running of my graphics community and my offers on other comms, as do many other designers. It is important in anonymous memes - I dread to even look at mlbanonmeme right now. And most importantly - it is an important tool for people to warn for triggering content in comments. I don't even know what possessed them to remove such an important organisation tool. Which brings me to...

2. Removal of the 'Parent' and 'Thread' links. Just...way to make reading collapsed comment content harder to read. Because this disabled person who has bad days with their hands really needed to have to click on each comment separately to read them.

3. The new userpics browser. Great idea in concept but I'm guessing no-one at LJ bothered to consider when forcing this on all users that this requires all the userpics to be loaded and not everyone has access to high speed Internet, meaning for some users, the load time will mean more time waiting for content to load and less time contributing to the diverse LJ community. Also, it would be nice if they were in alphabetical order by tag.
April 19 2011 @ 15:11
Via marthawells
Norilana Books is having a Foreclosure and Cross-Country Moving Book Sale. Vera has lost her house to the Bank of America, her health insurance, and is moving cross-country with her cancer survivor mother and four elderly pets. She runs a small press publisher and her books are available through Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and other online outlets.

(Please, please pass this on to anybody you think would be interested.)
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Some basic baseball icons. I know there are MLB 'Batter' logo icons like these but I've not seen individual teams before, so I decided to make some.

Just AL teams for now - will do NL teams on request.


teaser teaser teaser

American League Icons...Collapse )

ETA: Filled NL Team Requests...Collapse )

- Comments are love
- Credit if used - like so:

- Textless icons are not bases
- Do not modify icons
February 18 2011 @ 18:42

No Love,

(On another note, personal messaging is now restricted to those on my friends list only.)
September 25 2010 @ 19:12
I never imagined that my love of the Yankees and my love of actors and actresses of Stargate Atlantis would collide, but alas, strange things do sometimes happen.

From sheafrotherdon, originally posted by Joe Flanigan...
I would like to introduce everyone to my close friend Sarah Geary. Earlier this year she was diagnosed with ALS, also known as Lou Gehrigs disease. She has been unfortunately declining ever since. Despite the effects of this cruel disease, she manages to continually enrich the lives of those around her in the most amazing ways. My wife Katherine and I have been profoundly effected by her iron will, piercing intellect and abominable charm. It seems like health and spirit have an inverse relationship with Sarah. Her husband Tim has been overwhelmed with the practical and emotional demands of this crisis, all the while attending to a demanding full time job.

At the end of the day, however, the outcome is certain. Sarah will slowly and sometimes painfully diminish toward death. The medical demands and costs are staggering and, in some ways, constitute a second tragedy for the family. They have been living in the guest house of some very generous friends, which gives them proximity to the doctors. They have also been spending many of their weekends with my family in Malibu, where Sarah, Tim and the kids feel genuinely relaxed and welcome in their 'adopted home'. Recently Sarah has lost her speech and we now have to carry her in and out of the house. And while she has been robbed of so much of the communication we all take for granted, she manages to almost vibrate silently with affection for everyone and everything around her.

I feel remarkably blessed in my career. One thing I feel so proud of is the special relationship that we, actors of The Stargate franchises, have with our fans. If there ever was a chip I could cash in on for my success, this would be it. My uncharacteristic seriousness should only underscore the sobering obligation I feel toward Sarah.

I'm asking all of us to rally for Sarah Geary and her family. We can make her last days as comfortable as possible and help Tim and the kids transition to the next chapter of their lives. Unlike donations to a large organization where it is difficult to measure the impact of your contribution, your money will have a direct and immediate impact on her well-being from breathing apparatus' to night nurses. Tim and I will be keep everyone in touch by informing them of the process.

David Hewlett and I are auctioning off a lunch together in Los Angeles. David will be forced to eat lemons and laugh at my same joke that I will continually repeat throughout the meal. Additionally, and perhaps more shockingly, I am auctioning off my trusty skateboard that has reliably transported me around the studio-lot for many years and has appeared in scenes through out the Stargate Atlantis series. Yes, folks, I brought my skateboard to space. Please visit:

So please, join me and my friends in our support of Sara Geary. Look forward to seeing everyone soon.

If, like me, you don't have $1000 for the starting bid on his auctions, and you feel moved to help, you can donate directly to the Geary family in whatever small sum you like at Friends of Sarah Geary.

I've had a copy of Lou Gehrig's 'Luckiest Man' speech on my noticeboard for a long time. In the face of adversity, he still looked to the positive - something I have a lot of respect for and find deeply inspirational - especially when my own medical problems put me in the pit. Knowing how this awful illness robbed him of his skills and then his just makes me incredibly sad to see the three letters 'ALS' together.

I've met Joe Flanigan a few times and he's a nice guy. This has definitely given me a new respect for him - it takes a special person to take on the responsibility of helping to care for a woman who will become increasingly disabled, and to give her family respite. Major props to him and his wife for that.

I really hope that people will take the time to read the information on her site, as linked previously, and if possible, will donate what they can to her family. They need a phenomenal amount of money for her care, and the urgency for it is growing considering how quickly the illness has taken hold. Her letter is especially poignant.

All I really have left to say is:
Sarah might have been given a bad break, but with friends like Joe and Katherine, and generous people standing behind her and her family, she's one of the luckiest women on the face of the Earth.
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Disclaimer: This is my personal experience of social housing in the United Kingdom, specifically with the social landlords in one of the Midlands areas. Other disabled people in the UK may have had a better experience getting social housing that fits their needs.

Hi, my name is Anj. I'm 28. I live in the United Kingdom - specifically the Midlands. I'm a wheelchair user.

I also happen to be homeless, one of tens of thousands of people in the UK this year who will find themselves without or at risk of not having somewhere to live.

I'm no stranger to homelessness and the bureaucracy that surrounds being homeless - I experienced homelessness and the ineptitude of the system as a child when my mother left my abusive father and we spent two and a bit years couch-hopping, moving from friend to friend, slowly outstaying our welcome with every person we knew. I experienced it again when I exited a psychological abusive relationship and spent fourteen weeks of my life in a woman's refuge waiting for somewhere to restart living my life as opposed to existing. Now I'm here again through no fault of my own - I fled my own home after prolonged harassment and abuse and returned to my family home, which is now being repossessed. (Long story.)

This is the first time I'm going through this experience as a disabled person with extra housing needs - needing level access, needing an adapted bathroom, etc. The last time I was homeless, I wasn't at a stage where I needed adaptations to my home, so it was just a matter of waiting for a property to become available. Back then, you gave a list of areas you'd be willing to live and when a property became available, that would be where you'd live, with little recourse to say no. Now, the big thing in social housing - farmed out to housing associations after councils sold all their stock off - is 'Choose and Move', where you apply for housing and then look at a weekly published list of homes available for rent. Each property has its own criteria for allocation, usually based on a banding scheme - the one in use here is a three-tier 'bronze/silver/gold' system where those with the highest need are gold status. The name of the scheme and the banding system in use may vary from place to place but the concept is pretty identical.

After months of being bronze status due to the ignorance and general idiocy of the largest housing association in my area, I got a decision on my homeless application. My Section 184 paperwork arrived and I was informed I'd now being elevated to gold status, though having looked at how the system is run, having a priority need doesn't seem to mean much - 50% of properties are for silver and bronze only. (Whilst I see the need for giving these groups a chance in the system, this effectively eliminates the choice of anyone with gold status to bid on a property somewhere they might want to live. And the idea is supposed to be that people with gold status are the most in need of housing.)

However, the thing that has bothered me most throughout this isn't how the system works now. It's the discrimination against younger disabled people that makes it almost impossible to get a bungalow or a ground floor flat - since almost all of these properties are allocated to the elderly. Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against older people, but the fact that my own mother - who doesn't have a disability - can get housing that I need more than she does just appals the both of us. I sift through the raft of housing on the Choose and Move website every week when the new properties are added and it's the same thing every time - a load of properties that would be great but that I cannot bid on since 'I don't fit the criteria' - basically: 'You're too young'. (Even the 'general needs' housing choices are limited, since the information given about access is limited to 'Disabled - No'. If they were a bit more specific, like 'Level access - No', that would be a start.)

This is compounded by the fact that I was recently sent to view a property by our local adapted housing service - an organisation who are supposed to help people like me find a place to live by matching disabled people up with appropriate housing. I was informed that the property was adapted and accessible, so it was a shock when I got there and found that there was no way I could live there independently since there were no kerb cuts, the path into the building was very uneven - I actually fell out of my chair when I hit a raised slab and it tipped forward - and there was a huge-ass step into the building. (I actually partially dislocated my shoulder getting inside with how awkward it was to manoeuvre me and my chair inside.) It was a shame since it was a nice area, somewhere I'd have liked to have lived. There was just no way I could have managed that every day and when asked about the possibility of a ramp, I got the old favourite - "It's a health and safety issue."

Also, just down the road from where I live, a housing association is building a lovely block of accessible flats. Guess what? They're for over 55s.

The worst is being placated by people with stupid comments like, "Don't worry." What? Don't worry that in short order I'll have no home to go to? What an easy thing to say when you know you have a roof over your head for the foreseeable future, and even if you don't, your age AND being disabled won't be a huge barrier to getting the housing you really need.

The message I get from this is that if you're under-55 - and most especially under-30 - disabled and in need of social housing, forget about choice.

This post is for:
Blogging Against Disablism Day, May 1st 2010.
Read more posts about disablism here.

ETA: Anyone may comment though comments are screened when made anonymously and you will be required to complete a CAPTCHA. You may comment with OpenID.
April 13 2010 @ 03:12
This is the story of Rachel a.k.a. evilpuppy - a young woman with an 'invisible' disability treated in what can only be described as a despicable manner by every employee of United Airlines she came in contact with on a US domestic flight.

twistedchick has posted some general links regarding the ADA and how it applies in this situation, and who to take complaints to.

I'm horrified that any person thinks this is an acceptable way to treat any human being. The whole story makes the United Airlines staff involved look like uncharitable tossers with no sense of human decency or compassion. I'm particularly appalled by 'Dina' in this complaint. Her statement:
"I won't apologize for her actions and I'm not sorry for what happened to you. It's not in our contract to assist passengers with their luggage and we reserve the right to refuse assistance to anyone. If that's what you need, then perhaps in the future, you should make other travel arrangements."

I don't even...seriously?!?!?! Because when I worked as a hostess many moons ago for National Express, we were made aware that, as a crew, we were responsible for all on board the bus - their safety, any requirements for disabled/elderly people... I'd have never dreamed of refusing to help someone with their bags - and not because it was my job, but because I consider myself to be a decent person who will help others.

If the idea of this is to discourage disabled people from using them as an airline, they're succeeding - I won't dirty Winston's wheels by going on one of their planes until they resolve the problems they obviously have with carrying disabled passengers.

(Not that I need to - KLM have always been pretty awesome with my needs as a disabled person when I've travelled with them. And every airline I've ever travelled on - including Ryanair, who I loathe as a company - has had cabin crew who have been only too happy to help. I probably shouldn't have said that - the next time I fly I'll have a problem...)
December 31 2009 @ 02:26
One of the things I have decided to tackle today is removing people from my friends list who:

- have stated they are no longer posting on their LJ.
- have not updated in a long time, thus seem to have basically abandoned their journal.
- whose interests have diverged to a point where we barely ever speak.
- who I only really friended for a mutual interest that we don't share any more.
- who have other means to contact me and haven't contacted me in any form in quite some time.
- who had another journal for an artistic challenge that hasn't been used in a long time.

I know it might seem like a shitty time to some people, but this is the day where I evaluate the year past and move on from it. I have decided to move on from relationships where there is little contact or little common ground. I hope the people cut know that I valued their friendship while we talked and that I don't mean any disrespect. I thank you for being part of my life and wish you well in the future. Maybe our paths will cross again at some point.
Bitch Factor relaxed
Listening To On TV - Stephen Fry: Manic Depressive
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December 04 2009 @ 03:11
Amnesty International are running a campaign right now to get people to send greetings cards to people who are unjustly imprisoned, or who are in danger.

By clicking this link, you can find a list of the people they are asking for greetings to be sent to.

It is my sincere wish that some of you will send a card to one of the people. It'll cost you a card and postage - to make someone smile and let them know that they are supported in their struggles.

Thanks for listening. And please, regardless of whether you send a card or not, pass this on to others.
September 29 2009 @ 03:23
Some icons from yesterday's celebration - both on the field and off...

teaser teaser teaser

- Comments are love
- Credit if used - like so:

- Textless icons are not bases
- Do not modify icons
- Resource Post

Champagne Celebration, y"all...Collapse )
Darren Sumner of GateWorld tells me - and everyone else - why we're wrong to be offended by the casting call and sides recently released for episode Sabotage.

Spoken like a true white, Anglo-Saxon, Protestant, heterosexual, non-disabled, man. Talk about miss the point much.

And bonus failcakes by the dozen in the comments.

For the record, people like Darren don't get to tell me I'm wrong to be offended by disablist tropes in TV shows. 'Casting Documents Aren’t Meant for You' and 'Depiction Does Not Mean Endorsement' are NOT valid get-out-of-jail cards for offensive depictions of disabled people in TV shows - or of women, lesbians or people of colour for that matter either.

But then, people like Darren don't have to live with the consequences of such depictions that warp society's view of those groups. It's disabled people - like myself - who have to try and go about their daily lives dealing with the misconceptions of disabled people this shit breeds. Things like sitting in a restaurant talking to your friends and being asked by a random stranger how you manage your sex life. Or an able person striking up conversation at the bus stop and telling you how they'd commit suicide if they became disabled. Or people automatically assuming you need help without asking because they actually don't know how to ask because TV shows treat disabled people like aliens.

Further reading here.
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August 05 2009 @ 21:59
From the inbox today...

Time running out is running out to save DLA and AA from being axed.

A government green paper has revealed plans to stop paying disability benefits and hand the cash over to social services instead.

The Shaping the Future of Care Green Paper published by the DWP and the Department of Health on 14th July sets out government plans to get rid of attendance allowance and, depending on public reaction, also leaves the way clear to end the care component of DLA.

The consultation period for the green paper ends on 13 November. If there has been no significant outcry against the plans by then, it seems very likely that whichever party is in power after the next election will seize this opportunity to cut public spending by over a billion pounds a year.

Unfortunately, so far, that outcry has been very muted indeed, with only a few agencies – including RNIB and Age Concern and Help the Aged - speaking out. Shamefully, at least one major disability organisation, Disability Alliance, immediately announced its support for the green paper’s proposals.

This is in spite of the fact that a report in November 2008 by the Institute for Social and Economic Research warned that taking DLA and AA from claimants and making it part of a ‘personal budget’ administered by social services will leave millions of disabled people worse off and with less independence.

Continues at Benefits and Work.

Threat to DLA FAQs.

Given my experience with social services, I think this is an absolutely terrible idea. Considering I've been waiting an age to get as much as a needs evaluation from them with regards to the accessibility of the HA property I currently live in, I dread to think what it'd be like if the care component of my DLA was handed over to them and they were put in charge of my 'care'. *shakes head*

I'm really not going to get onto a moan about the disabled and elderly always being the ones they go for when it comes to making cuts. I just implore all people in the UK to sign the protest and pass it on to as many people as possible, not just for the most vulnerable in society, but for your own future. You never know when you will be in need of these benefits.
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June 30 2009 @ 06:07
I'm doing a friends cut.

All of the people I'm cutting are ones where our interests have gone on their separate paths and therefore we really haven't spoken in ages. It's nothing personal - I'm just tightening things up here some more. I wish you the best as we go our separate ways.

I'd appreciate people I've cut removing me. I'd also appreciate it if some of the huge list of people I've never friended back did this as well, since there isn't going to be anything much posted here that isn't friends only.

If you think I defriended you in error, leave a message - comments are screened.

And since I'm defriending people, consider this an amnesty if you want rid of me - no hard feelings.
June 25 2009 @ 05:24
Today we have Mariano the plate. Not particularly a place Yankees fans want to see him, but one of the great things about Interleague Play. Since the Yankees got a rally going, they ended up getting to him in the order...

Mariano Rivera wields a bat...

The lead up to this was funny, with Melky Cabrera sort of coaching him on the bench, before providing him with the necessary tools:

- Gloves - Melky's own.
- A Helmet - Alfredo Aceves', which is funny because Ace is also a pitcher.
- A Bat - a plain black Slugger - so take your pick. It looked well used, so I'd say Alex's or Derek's. But it could belong to almost anyone. ETA: It was Cody Ransom's bat.

He didn't even bother to take swings in the on-deck circle, just standing casually to wait for his turn. The whole team took to the top step to watch as Mo stood in the batter's box for only the second time in his entire career.

He took a good swing too. A solidly hit fly-ball that was caught by Braves CF Nate McLouth. Too bad it didn't carry a bit further - he'd have gotten a grand slam.

Bless be video...
June 21 2009 @ 20:50
Top Gear just here be spoilers...Collapse )
June 21 2009 @ 20:39
Not many pics from yesterday's game, let alone interesting ones, so I'm using this opportunity to post a nice pic I found of Derek yesterday whilst looking for something else. Not that I need any encouragement to post DJ pics. =P


Andy Pettitte kneels on the 2B sack after hitting an RBI double. Talk about a pitcher helping himself. This is the stuff I like about Interleague Play.

Just for a little Schadenfreude for Yankees fans after our recent series against them - Toronto dropped the first game in their series against Washington. You just know the Nats are going to be brutal all season, will cellar-dwell in the NL-E, will have people pointing and laughing at how bad they are generally, but yet will be known as the 2009 AL Killers.