May 23rd, 2013
May 21st, 2013
Living as I do in my cozy little corner of northwest Europe, where things like volcanos or earthquakes, let alone tornadoes, just don’t happen, it’s hard to understand the sheer scale of destruction a tornado like the one that hit Moore, OK yesterday can leave behind. Seeing videos like the one above just leave me gobsmacked. Luckily it’s not all doom and gloom and finding your dog alive though your house is flattened must give this woman some sort of comfort:
May 14th, 2013
Science fiction and fantasy can be incredibly whitebread at times, though it is slowly getting better. One of the things that having more writers of more diverse backgrounds brings to the genre is new and interesting perspectives, as the two examples below make clear.
First, in a review for the LA Review of Books Nalo Hopkinson made the point that the Caribbean makes a good hjumping off point for a colonional or post-colonial sf setting that would be more interesting than the usual American frontier nonsense:
To my delight, in Lord’s afterword, she claims the Caribbean as the post-colonialist convergence of cultures that it is, pointing out that it is thereby an apt jumping-off place for speculative extrapolation. Sing it, sister. It’s all too common for the rest of the world to assume that the Caribbean is a bucolic vacation playground of villages and beaches, incapable of initiating any real scientific or technological progress.
African Americans, in a very real sense, are the descendants of alien abductees; they inhabit a sci-fi nightmare in which unseen but no less impassable force fields of intolerance frustrate their movements; official histories undo what has been done; and technology is too often brought to bear on black bodies (branding, forced sterilization, the Tuskegee experiment, and tasers come readily to mind).
No real conclusions here, just some things that made me think.
May 11th, 2013
Eric Burdon and War on Beat Club in 1970 is some of the funkiest laid down groove you’ll ever hear, the perfect mix of funk and psychedelic rock. It’s Eric Burdon’s 72nd birthday today so why not celebrate it this way?
May 7th, 2013
Time flies even when you’re not having fun. This time last year it had been half a year since Sandra died and I’d just come back from Plymouth to scatter her ashes. My youngest nephew was still a couple of days from being born; he’ll be one next Sunday, coincidently being born on the same day as his aunt’s birthday and a week after his daddy’s. It’s a cliche, but the world moves on even when you stand on top of it screaming for it to stop.
Grief lessens over time of course and eighteen months of being alone is starting to feel normal. To be honest, the two years before that, which Sandra mostly spent in hospital, didn’t feel like a normal relationship anymore either, but more as if everything was on hold until she got better, or not. It’s hard to get out from under that holding pattern. Not sure I quite want to yet either.