Doctor Who has been such a huge part of my life. It’s helped me develop as a person, led me to my current writing styles and even some of my interests. It’s taught me about sacrifice and strength and being alone, and friendship and how one person can change the world.
But right now I am so unbelievably frustrated with the show.
I was so excited for Season 7. I’d just gotten home from Sweden and from a betrayal that still hurts, and I needed the comfort and strength of familiar characters who had taught me so much. I needed the quirkiness and the brilliance because I was less than happy with my life.
I actually shut off the first episode of S7 partway through and went to read a book because I was so disgusted with the characters. Oswin seemed to be too much a manic pixie dream girl for me to handle, or at least flawless. Also another in the line of beautiful women who have been companions. I want someone not flawlessly gorgeous, like Donna - someone insecure and yet comfortable with herself, who backtalks and fights and is so, so, so important and yet refuses to believe in it because she can’t understand why anyone would think that of her.
(I’m a huge Donna fan, if you can’t tell - I find her incredibly relatable, especially because so much of her story mirrors my own.)
And it’s not just Oswin. It’s Amy suddenly feeling “useless” because she is infertile and the fact that she didn’t sit down and talk this out with Rory - they just got divorced. It’s the fact that there were two damsels in distress and the men played the heroes. It’s the fact that Amy and Rory’s makeup was so damn lazy and brief that I felt nothing about it - makeups are suppose to be gut wrenching and take a long time; pain and betrayal like that is not something you get over so easily.
As the season has progressed, we’ve had the flashy storylines with holes that the Empire State building could fit through. I haven’t felt invested in any of them, and have next to no emotions regarding most of them, beyond a “Jesus, what the fuck happened to this show?” I was relieved when the Ponds left, because the show tried so hard to make me feel for them that I couldn’t.
I want snarky companions who feel insecure but walk the world and save the universe. I want terrifying monsters that make me freaked out to walk outside at night. I want the Doctor who is so, so damaged, has suffered so much and has so much rage, and needs someone to tell him to stop.
I don’t think Moffat is giving that to us. We’re getting the big effects but none of the plotlines that made so many people fall in love with the show to begin with. We’re getting cardboard cutouts of characters - people who look good on a poster and little else.
I want the show that taught me that one person can change the universe back.
I’ll keep watching, but right now my patience is running out.
In these troubled times where our energy future is somewhat uncertain, we can use every source of alternative/sustainable/renewable energy available. Solar panels, biogas, thermo, wave turbines (which I am still hesitant to support…more on that later), hydrogen fuel cells…but for today, I will discussing the safety of wind turbines.
Book Review: Catherine of Aragon by Giles Tremlettt
The wife Henry VIII tore Christianity apart to divorce, and yet the one who was married to him for far longer than all of his other five wives put together, Catherine of Aragon was the youngest daughter of the famed Catholic Monarchs of Spain, Isabel and Ferdinand, and mother to the feared Bloody Mary. Documenting her life through childhood, her engagement to Henry’s older brother Arthur and her time married to the greatest polygamist of English history, the book tells the story of a courageous Spanish woman who wished to be true to her husband above all else. Told through personal letters and detailed account and supplemented with photographs of paintings, the book provides a window into her life.
I adored this book. The history of the Tudors I have long found fascinating, and I knew a bit about Anne Boleyn, Mary, Elizabeth and Henry himself, but almost nothing of Catherine - I didn’t even know she was daughter to the Catholic Monarchs, nor that she was sister to Juana la Loca. The language was elegant, and the chapters were short, which made this book easy to pick up and read while also leaving time to focus on other things.
Catherine of Aragon was an inspiring woman, and the book reveals so much about her - apparently, she had an eating disorder that today would be classified as anorexia nervosa, which is why many people think she had trouble conceiving and miscarried as often as she did. She was also more willing to lie and manipulate the truth than she liked to paint herself as, which I found fascinating. She was also very highly educated for the time, and unbelievably stubborn and clever. Definitely a must read if you have any interest in history.
I’m not kidding when I say I don’t think I was breathing much when I was reading this article.
That area of surface melt is enormous. That is near the entire island. Having that melt is one of those things we can never, ever undo.
Like the article says, usually half of the sheet melts during the summer, and in the winter, this ices over again and snow falls and Greenland survives another year. But 94%?
Why is this not bigger news? This is actually kind of important. Climate changing and its effects are accelerating in ways we are not prepared for in the slightest. We do need to change things. The way society is now is not sustainable in the slightest - not economically, nor environmentally. New Scientist had an issue last week about finance, and I was shocked to learn that the poorest half of the world’s population has roughly 1% of the wealth.
Three and a half billion people, and they have 1% of the total wealth worldwide.
Something about this whole situation - actually, most everything about this whole situation - just does not seem right.
So, in the era of political correctness, gender neutrality is becoming a pretty big thing. It’s always been, more or less - English users tend to go with “them” for official things, since “he” or “she” can be seen as sexist.
What interests me is that people have been trying to introduce gender neutral pronouns for two hundred years. Some of the ones I’ve heard proposed are “sie”, “hir” or “zey”.
I think for the people who are not exactly male or female - and there are people like this; I have a friend who has a hard time identifying as male or female, even though biologically my friend is female - that this is an important fight. But I think it also confuses people - I remember fighting with a classmate about this kind of issue, and he insisted that people are born male or female, and that is something you are.
(I’m really curious if my classmate knows about the David-Brenda study (http://reason.com/archives/2004/05/24/the-death-of-david-reimer), in which a little boy was surgically reassigned to be female and raised as a girl. He ended up being depressed, becoming a tomboy, and went back to being a guy, before committing suicide in his thirties. But I don’t think I’ll ask my classmate if he’s heard of this, because chance is he hasn’t.)
Anyway. So, this article is very interesting, and I’m glad society is moving forward with this, but it will take a long time. It’s incredibly difficult to imagine something outside of male-female, and getting people to accept that this is a true battle that needs to be fought is not easy in the slightest.
So I went to see the Amazing Spiderman, and the line at the end by the teacher, about how the theme of everything was actually “Who am I?” got me thinking about the problems knowing who you are can cause.
What you’re looking at is a new design of wind power generators. These stalks are about 180 feet tall, and a foot and a half wide at the base. LED lights at the top provide warning to aircraft traveling overheard.
Power is generated through the differences in pressure - when the wind blows and then slackens against the stalk, the compression inside presses against piezoelectric ceramic discs. A current is generated that then runs through the cables down to the base, where a torque generator is located, which transforms the kinetic energy to electric. Chambers and pumped hydro are located under the area taken up by the Windstalks in order to preserve energy and smooth out demand.
I’m wondering about the cost of this all, but I have to admit the design is fascinating and the concept is highly ingenious. It seems like an interesting alternative to the standard windmill design - which most people don’t want spoiling their view. This is like a gigantic art piece and it’s useful! I’m also wondering how the Windstalk stacks up against the standard windmill design in terms of energy production, but this is definitely cool and worth looking into.
Hi! I created a blog for synesthetes called "a-synesthetic-world" so we can all share our stories and experience with others that share our gift, regardless of what type. I may not be an expert but I'll try to answer all questions. Usually I post info about synesthesia or art that resembles my kind. (My type is sound - color and much more) Thanks for hearing me out! Have a nice day! :)
Hey, sweet! I’m more interested in the neurological aspects of being a synesthete right now, but it’s cool to know there’s blogs out there for this kind of thing! Do you know how common it is? I spent about twenty minutes trying to find a reliable answer…couldn’t find much. Thanks!