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Sophelia

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  1. I'm supporting the Good Law Project who (among other things) are working in the UK to legally challenge anything which threatens trans rights. Information here if you want to and can financially support this campaign: https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/transgender-lives/ https://goodlawproject.org/
  2. Have you explained this to your supervisor or chatted to your personal tutor/academic advisor? I got major stress with physical symptoms a week before my masters dissertation deadline, talked to my personal tutor who discussed with me the options for applying for extensions etc. which I didn't take in the end because I didn't want to prolong the anxiety, but just knowing there were options just in case did help to reduce the pressure.
  3. Talking of wildlife in the UK thread, but this happened in Germany (alert: naked man running after wild boar...) https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-53692475
  4. Well, it speculates, that it could be these were the items that it was going to claim had been sent, for these 'brushing' reviews, but it seemed a very weak argument (for the labelling). I was offering an alternative speculation Regarding my own (ordered) seeds I just went back and saw some more recent reviews including someone who noticed that the seeds came via Malaysia bur originated in China and actually checked with the Royal Horticultural Society who said "It is probably illegal to grow these seeds - the rules are complex. In any case we discourage the cultivation of seeds of unknown origin in case they transmit disease." Thanks to this thread for helping me confirm that I'm not planting my seeds. I hope the US seed mystery is tracked down to its origins.
  5. Interestingly mysterious! I am curious that some of them were labelled as jewellery. I actually ordered some courgette seeds from amazon a few months ago, not realising that they came from a long way away (Malaysia I think), and they were labelled as jewellery too. I wondered if something dodgy was going on, but they looked like courgette seeds (I haven't planted them yet due to lingering paranoia). So I thought they might have been labelled as jewellery because of customs regulations - that probably seeds aren't supposed to be sent without special license or whatever, so if they were labelled as jewellery the customs people wouldn't know. Is that plausible? It could explain this case too. (Well, not why the seeds are being sent, but the mislabelling)
  6. Just wanted to interject with my own cat-happiness story. I have been thinking of getting cats for around 9 years - since the last of my previous beloved pair of second-hand cats died (around 1 year apart) - it was a traumatic experience so it took me over a year to feel ready again, but because I have a long-distance relationship with another (westeros) boarder, I felt I couldn't get more cats because I was away every month or so. But my next door neighbour is another cat-lover and said he would be very happy to look after cats for me -indeed we discussed possible sharing cats - but in the end I decided that was impractical (someone - me - would be paying the vet bills etc, and would want the cats to be in my house if so!) so in December I decided that I would get a pair of cats and my neighbour could look after them when I was away. I hadn't got around to pursuing this further, but one weekend a month ago I had a weekend free, and as it became clear that I would very soon be working at home due to coronavirus, I went to one of the local Cat & Dog shelters. I have been there before, last time I had thought about getting a cat again - they are really good and asked me lots of questions to establish which cats I might be suited for - then gave me the names of two pairs of cats they had in the shelter that day which they had matched with me (e.g. quiet home, no children). I went to look at the cats: in each pair, there was one cat inside the cage hidden, and one out. One of the cats was beautiful, all black, but hissed at me (well, it's not ideal circumstances), but the cat from the other pair (also beautiful - an unusually grey tabby) came out I arrived and rubbed against my hand. So I expressed an interest in seeing more of the latter pair, and they arranged for me to see both cats in the pair in a special 'socialisation' space with chairs and cat toys and catnip. During this time they totally stole my heart - the grey tabby "Winnie" was just so inquisitive and alive, and her 'brother' (I can't believe they are actually related, just brought up together), supposedly more shy, a really big black and white tomcat "Vincent", rubbed against me and was just so shiny and solid and well just a loveable chonk. Well, I was totally smitten, so I 'reserved' them. Both the shelter and I insisted on a 24 hour thinking time, but the next day I just had no doubts and rang to say I would get them (my neighbour came with me to check them out and transport them), so I paid the dues without hesitation. So they came home and I have now had them four weeks, and they are the best cats ever! They have just the right balance of quirkiness and affection, and have been astonishingly good at not waking me up early each morning - indeed they are quite laid-back about being fed in the morning. I like that they are completely different from each other as well, but also one of them washes the other one, so there is a bond between them. Winnie continues to be extremely friendly and affectionate - and also a complete mischief as she loves to trap and run off with my biros and any other small objects like wine-bottle-tops, and Vincent is shyer but that just makes it more moving when I find him curled up on my bed when I wake up in the morning. Basically I am besotted and have bought them a cat tree and cat toys and whatever they do I adore them! (If only my boyfriend could be with me, it would be perfect, but they help me pass the time and I'm not sure where I'd be without them - cats - you have to love them). My cats are a delight.
  7. OK, so nothing to do with coronavirus but this twitter thread (unpack to see more videos) is totally appropriate for the title... (be warned may be considered in bad taste - but if it made me laugh...)
  8. Liffguard this sounds exactly the right thing to do (disclaimer: not a professional judgement, my opinion) - good on you for your heart leading you this way. It's great he is talking to friends and you are there for him. You could broach medical/professional support services as well*, but I'm sure this was the immediate and warm thing that he needed and will continue to benefit from, his friends rallying around and listening to him. * you could actually seek this out for yourself, as support for you dealing with this and advice on how to handle it (I once rang the Samaritans because I'd just spoken to a stranger moments before he killed himself by jumping off a bridge - and they said things which helped me)
  9. I like that too! Lany - have you seen this from twitter? (P.S. This isn't actually recommended - read the comments on why this isn't a good idea)
  10. Thanks Lany and Xray - those are both really useful replies. I looked at the Nikon Coolpix P300 bridge camera in a shop because it has an astonishing x83 zoom, and also the B700 with the 60x zoom, but I think Lany is spot-on - with those really long zooms it's going to be very hard to keep the lens pointing steadily at anything - I found the P900 very difficult to control. Also picture quality not so good with those massive zooms - the ones which are supposed to be better for pics have more modest zoom ranges. It's interesting to hear the range that Xray's friends use*. I have an entry-level Canon DSLR with an old 75-300mm zoom (no image stabilisation and doesn't do wide aperture) which is pretty good considering it's about 25 years old (used to use it on my film camera so I think that means it actually goes effectively beyond 300mm though I don't totally understand that - however the picture quality is not that good at the extreme end of the zoom - or could be me wobbling maybe!). The 400mm lenses for Canon cameras are a bit out of my price range (especially those which allow wide aperture for low light photography) but I could look to save up for a second-hand one in the long-term. In the meantime it sounds like if I could find a good cheap bridge camera with zoom equivalent to around 400mm, I could practice with bigger zoom to see how I manage - I prefer not to carry a tripod though Lany's advice makes me think a monopod might be useful. The 400mm suggestion does correspond to the length I have found good bird pics on flickr - I'm not sure I have seen many good ones taken at a greater length. Interesting - and useful! Sophie * I was going to ask if you they're using full-frame DSLRs or crop-sensor but actually the web suggests crop-sensor types are better for zoom/wildlife/birding stuff - yay! So yeah - scrap that question - no worries.
  11. Wow - you people have such amazing birds! I don;t know much about birds myself and am impressed with your dedication, identification skills and sharp eyes. I'm in the UK and have gradually become more interested in birds though my friend who I do photography with, who has infected me with her enthusiasm for birds - she has a bird feeder in her garden in quite a suburban area so she gets a huge variety and many of them next nearby, and she knows what they all are - whereas I'm more at the stage of if it isn't a sparrow, robin, blackbird, pigeon or gull (I love Xray's wording of 'saltwater assholes'!) it seems exotic to me! But because my eyesight is not great and they move so fast, I'm not very good at bird-spotting. Recently however we have been visiting the local Wetlands centre and also visiting parks with bird hides, so I am very gradually getting more bird exposure and growing enthusiasm. Here is a photo I took recently of a greater spotted woodpecker: I'm very envious of the bird-spotters who have massive long zoom camera lenses (well out of my price range) but I am considering getting a superzoom bridge camera so I can take better pictures of birds which are some way away from me. I wondered if anyone here combines the bird-spotting hobby with photography and if so what kind of camera kit you use.
  12. Sophelia

    Board Issues 4

    I am having the same problem as Pebs - much of the time but not all the time the forums are displaying in the left-hand side not in the main window (which is blank). I too use Firefox. It is intermittent so it's hard to know what's causing it, but it's really difficult to read anything that way. Sophie
  13. The other thing I wanted to test was the option Click to configure post options, which I keep forgetting to click in case it mucks up my already-written post... *braces* *clicks* Oh OK, that wasn't too exciting after all (thought I might be able to set default font and so on), but it's just enable emoticons, sig, notification of replies, and the post icons.
  14. Just want to test the new posting options, such as what happens when you change font colour or size or type and also test the new spoiler text: Now to see these other options... I've always liked horizontal rules, so let's have a couple of them and See if I can insert html: <table> <tr>AAAA</td><td>BBBB</td></td> </table> [/html] The other things were either baffling or scary (also seemed to invite you to type in a box which then tried to list it on the menu - a bug there). [acronym=Your mileage may vary]YMMV[/acronym]
  15. This pinned thread is for the nominated people to post their recipes. No other posts please. For the concept, questions and discussion see the [url="http://asoiaf.westeros.org/index.php?showtopic=35068"]ASOIAF Board Dinner Party thread[/url]. [b]Week 1, March 12 to March 18[/b] Raidne: Raidne's Deluxe Mac'n'Cheese Lany Cassandra: Super Delicious Chicken that kids love Terraprime: Fish stir fry with broccoli inspired by Korean cuisine [b]Week 2, March 19 to March 25[/b] Silverstar: Pasta Carbonara Sworn Sister: Chicken recipe Boiled Leather: Butternut squash soup [b]Week 3, March 26 to Apr 2[/b] HT Reddy: Chicken AutumnEvenings: Curried sweet potato and lentil "shepherd pie" Zabzy: Strawberry shortcake [/quote] Please could the nominated recipe providers post their recipes in this thread? Please wait until all the recipes from the weeks before you have been posted before posting yours. Inviting Raidne, Lany and Terra to post first.
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