Fragile Bird

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About Fragile Bird

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    The past is a foreign country
  • Birthday 09/16/1954

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    cairn terriers, lawyer jokes

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    Fragile Bird

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  1. I am trying to keep up with all the news (I'm still in Europe after Worldcon) but there's been so much... It wasn't that long ago since we were saying 'don't use the term Nazi' when discussing the Trump administration, was it?
  2. I knew in the most basic terms what happened over the last two days, but being in Helsinki and then travelling to Belgium meant I had no time to sort everything out. I've now read through this thread and through a number of the stories that popped up on my facebook page, or linked here, and have watched a bit of CNN. I think that one thing that has been glossed over by some people in this thread who complained about inaction by the police was how effing heavily armed the alt right were. I've seen reports that 80% were not only carrying arms but some pretty heavy duty weaponry. I think the governor himself was quoting as saying they were more heavily armed than the state police. As far as I know, the black protestors who police moved against weren't armed the same way. Which was probably why the police acted the way they did, of course. Does anyone think that if the police moved against the marchers shooting wasn't going to break out? The guy who mowed down people with his car was beyond the fringe, he really was a terrorist and should be prosecuted as such. Nobody else in the west allows citizens to march in the streets heavily armed like you guys do. Honestly, it's hard to comprehend for the rest of us.
  3. I expected much posting here, but I guess everything's on Facebook these days! We have been blessed so far with fantastic weather, low 20s during the day and 13 or 14 overnight. But humid. I keep planning to put on my shorts but once we leave our airbnb in the morning we don't get back until night, so jeans all day. We are probably staying the most south of anyone, but it's still only a 20 minute tram ride, plus about a 7 or 8 minute walk to the tram, which drops us off at the conference center. We arrived Monday afternoon, got settled in, bought groceries and found a local pub to have dinner. Great cocktails, which we hope to replicate on our return home! On Tuesday we walked forever, met up with Buckwheat and saw the market at the ferry terminal, the Orthodox cathedral which is also down by the harbor, the magnificent Lutheran cathedral, the Chapel of Silence, a pod shaped wooden structure for peace and contemplation in the middle of a busy city square, and the cool Rock Church, carved into solid granite. Then we headed to Messukeskus for registration, an easy in and out especially since there was a very aggressive organizer ordering everyone to get the hell out immediately! Then headed back home and passed out from exhaustion. Oh...and on the way from the market we stopped at a Magnum pop-up shop and made our own Magnum bars! The shop had the frozen ice cream ready for dipping into white, milk or dark chocolate and a dozen different toppings to add. Decadent doesn't begin to describe the results! Wednesday morning we were back at the harbour to take the ferry to the five islands that make up the island fortress of Suomenlinna, with 100 of our fellow con goers. You could easily spend the better part of the day there, not just an hour and a half. Then back to Messukeskus for the start of the con. Things did not start well in that nobody knew where they were going or where the different stair wells were, the hallways where the conference rooms are somewhat narrow and most of the rooms are fairly small. 100 people. The stairs and the halls were so jammed you couldn't move and before you got to the room you wanted you were being told they were full. We all attended the opening ceremonies (every opening ceremonies is boring ) just because GRRM was doing a podcast with Tea and Jeopardy in the same room. I had never heard of the podcast, or, at least, forgot they've been nominated for a Hugo several times, and it seems clever and funny and worth listening to once I get home. Emma and Peter Newman play an upper crust lady and her butler and have guests for tea and cake. George was asked what the RR stands for, and he replied 'my middle initials?', and few other amusing things, and some more serious questions fame and lack of privacy. Emma decided he was George Really Really Martin. George 'drinks' a sleeping potion that gives horrible nightmares and the crowd was urged to wake him by making happy noises. That didn't work, but making the sounds your favourite character made when they were killed did the trick! After all the complaints about the overcrowded conditions the Con organizers shut down new registrations, which must have disappointed people who planned to come in on day passes or register for the weekend, but there wasn't much else they could to. I understand about 6,000 took full memberships and another 2,000 supporting memberships were sold, which is several thousand more than KC last year. The day ended with Chinese food with a dozen board members, and a cocktail at our local bar. We tried the parties but the space was relatively small, a large hall for several hundred in the hotel, but it was crowded and the booze expensive so we left. Mormont apparently found a much better party walking back to his hotel, the lucky devil! Thursday was much more organized, partly because people knew where they were going and partly because more volunteers were in the halls controlling traffic and lines, and also because they clued in to the fact they have to use the standard Con rule, order everyone out of the session room at the end so that people who were lined up waiting could get in to the next session. The signing session with George must have been a nightmare. A small group of us dined at a Nepalese buffet and then went back for a Quiz, run by Lada from Dublin. The quiz was gruesomely difficult. Name the five towers of Harrenhall. Who lost the Lannister sword. What were the names of Dunk's three horses. Who was the Kingmaker. A team of strangers who obviously had better memories than we did won the quiz. In fact, I think all the top 3 teams were strangers! Bah! We shall study up for Dublin! We again tried the parties, China and Dublin this time, and it was just as bad as the night before, so 8 of us took off for a Steam Punk bar near the central train station. When we got there we were asked for a 3 euro cover charge, so we said screw it and went to the brew pub across the way, making Targh very happy since it was on his list of brew pubs to visit. Shortly thereafter another half dozen BwBers and two newbies joined us and a good time was had by all. After imbibing a beer and a half I left with Targh's backpack (wondering why the hell my backpack felt so heavy, duh, half a dozen bottles of beer were in it) and we had to come back with the taxi to exchange packs. Still left my hoody behind, though. You can dress me up but you really can't let me have a beer and a half! More tonight or tomorrow. We leave Sunday morning, sadly, someone will have to report on the close!
  4. I thought that Trump's 2020 slogan had already been announced - Keep America Great!
  5. So...I found out this morning the Sneasel with the big feather is female and the Sneasel with the little feather is male. The symbols are right there.... You'll need both in order to breed them, but who knows when that will start.
  6. I understand alcohol is very expensive in Finland. 1 litre of spirits, 4 litres of wine or 16 litres of beer is the limit if you are 20 or older,18 if beer or wine less than 22%. Because X-ray is not there I don't think any parties or get-togethers have been organized. I think we need to talk once we get there. We will register on Tuesday, maybe we can suss out a good meeting area to gather in during the con, and identify a bar/restaurant or two.
  7. I just fly over the seas....
  8. Ugh. Just read that the Mooch's wife filed for divorce while nine months pregnant. That is one pissed off woman. And while he was with Trump at the infamous Jamboree, she was rushed off to hospital to give birth a couple of weeks early. Took him 4 days to go see his new son. Apparently no other woman was involved, just dedication to Trump. Their marriage was a 2nd marriage for both. He had been married for 23 years and had 3 children. She worked at his investment firm. They started dating after they both split from their spouses, and got married after the birth of their first child, once his divorce was finalized, three years ago. Sounds pretty shitty, all round.
  9. Hey, long time no see! Glad to have you back!
  10. The NYT has run an op-ed piece by a former CIA person who suggests the infamous meeting at Trump Tower was coordinated in such a way to make sure it would be discovered fairly easily. Covert meetings meant to be secret aren't arranged by email with well known Russian government associates in attendance. The purpose was to show to the world that the Russians could brazenly interfere in US elections. The best part of the story was the quoting of a Russian proverb - free cheese is only available in mousetraps.
  11. I think it just shows Priebus is a pro.
  12. Yes, it's already been reported here. That's why I noted he's showing up for an interview on CNN.
  13. For those of you who ae interested or curious, Reince Priebus is about to show up on CNN for an interview, in person. Very shortly, apparently.
  14. Geez, can someone quote some large sections of that story? The bloody NYer says I've read my limit every time I click on a NYer link, even though I haven't read any! The author is on CNN right now, talking about how bizarre the conversation was.