Well, after a week of well over 10 degrees (it got to around 15 last Wednesday), spring has decided it’s not playing. Yesterday we had some flurries of snow that didn’t stick. This morning we woke up to a decent frosting, and it was throwing it down all day so hard that it was up to about mid-calf depth (if you’re as short as me) in the deeper drifts. Insane.
So, due to that and work reasons, I couldn’t make iai tonight. And what’s the next best thing?
Making fun of other people’s hard work, that’s what!
Let’s get… FORSAKEN!
According to our site stats, almost two thirds of visitors to our site are looking for information on sparrows. Don’t believe me? Here is a graph of the search strings that have found our site, grouped by whether or not they contain the word “sparrow”:
See? It’s scientific fact. And 23 of those are variants on “is sparrow and dove same thing?” So, what does the mailbag have for us this time? (Please don’t be sparrows, please don’t be sparrows)
red light district in frankfurt on map
rob liefeld wallpapers
… On second thoughts, let’s go with the sparrows.
sparrow in maths sets
Aww, who wants to learn some maths?
So, I suck. I was planning to do this every week, but then I decided to make an immense cross stitch for my sister’s birthday, and I massively underestimated it. As in, it’s still not finished, and her birthday was on the 18th February. Worst sister ever. On the upside, I managed to get to England for a weekend and show her the work in progress, so yay! I’ll of course be blogging it here (ha, as if I don’t have at least two posts worth of cross stitches waiting in the wings even as we speak) and now that she’s seen it, I feel like I can talk about it spoiler-free, as it were. Not that I even know if she reads this blog.
So, in other news I’ve been to a few iaido seminars recently, which have cut back on stitching/blogging time. And on the 16th/17th March, at Bad Homburg Hochtaunushalle, I’ll be competing in the German nationals, so, you know, there’s that! If you’re in the area – come along! It’s free!
Slightly related to this, I’ve been having shoulder trouble recently. Long story short, I have hypermobile joints, and my shoulders have been grinding (more than usual) and giving me some pain. I eventually went to see someone, terrified that my mother was right and I finally had arthritis to show me right for freaking out shoe shop assistants and classmates etc with my “party tricks”, but the orthopaedic guy reckons it’s muscular, not joint-related, which was a huge relief. Still waiting to find out what to do about it, but at least it’s looking manageable/fixable. Take that, hypermobility. Still got some years in my joints yet.
So that’s the life update, I’m sure it was fascinating. Let’s get on with the ~scholarly analysis~ of City of Bones.
Chapter five. Hold on to your hats, kids.
For Christmas, we got a bird camera (Brinno BirdWatchCam if you want to know), and we set it up in eager anticipation of lovely bird pictures. Sadly, being the height of winter, we got no photos before a sudden cold snap completely trashed the batteries. But with warmer weather and new, better quality batteries…
Yes! You read that right! Today you get not one, but TWO chapters of City of Bones ranting, or critiquing, or whatever this is.
These are short chapters, and the last ones before everything starts going insane, so I thought I’d be as time-efficient as possible and shorten your wait.
Colin, hurry up and read the damn book already.
SPOILER WARNINGS AHOY.
Marcus stepped in off the street into his heated villa. He watched the snow collect on the window sills and smiled. Once, he knew, houses had open windows with nothing more than skins and cloth to keep out the elements, but now a pane of crystal stood between him and the elements.
Antonia walked in from the kitchen, clad in the strange tunic and breeches that everyone in the city wore.
“How are the kitchen slaves?” Marcus asked, kissing his wife on the cheek.
“No-one’s had slaves for hundreds of years,” she giggled in reply. “You mean the dishwasher and the foodprocessor.” She said these words naturally, as if she said them every day.
“Oh yes, of course.” He sat in his chair next to the radiator. “You know, once upon a time, people put their radiators under the floor, and called them “hypocausts”. What a primitive people they were back then.”
“I once went to the First Century Museum in New Rome,” Antonia replied. She reached into her pocket and pulled out her cameraphone, a device that made paintings of incredible realism and displayed them on a glowing canvas. “They had a model of a 1st century house, and 1st century food as well. Did you know they used to eat meat straight from the animal?”
“How barbaric!” Marcus said, and as if in reply, he opened the box of chickuggets he’d bought from a takeaway on the way home. They smelled almost like the real thing. With grease-stained fingers, he reached down and picked up his laptop. “I should look up more of this on the internet.”
“What’s that?” Antonia asked.
“This? It’s called a computer. It’s not unlike the abacuses that people used many centuries ago, but instead of beads, it uses electrons, which are a type of bead too small to see.”
“Oh Marcus,” Antonia gasped, “isn’t it wonderful living in the 21st century?”
Time to stick my hand into the lucky dip of our incoming Google Searches once more and see what comes to the top…
HOW ARE THERE SO MANY OF YOU?
This will never do. Let’s have another look.
Ah, now that’s a good question.
OK, so let’s get back to my obsessive need to pick apart anything that kind of annoys me. City of Bones, wheeee!
I repeat, if you haven’t read City of Bones and plan to, don’t read on. I’m not kidding about this need of mine being obsessive. Though I’m sure there are none of you who fit this description, right? Especially no one who’s refusing to read City of Bones until I read Insurgent. Hahahahaha why would you even think that?
Sadly, my original plan to show the flow of transport around Frankfurt over the course of a day failed due to the extreme lack of availability of timetable data in a halfway reasonable format. So instead, here’s some maps of Frankfurt and the surrounding area made by mucking about with OpenStreetMap data in MapPoint. Enjoy?
So, I like to read. And I like to read… opinionatedly. In fact, here is the beginning of an opinionated reading of the (appalling) Harry Potter fanfic, Dumbledore’s Army and the Year of Darkness. I’d give you a plot summary but I can feel the bewildered rage rising in me just by typing out its title, so I won’t. Read it if you dare, or if you have hours of free time you desperately need to fill. Sorry for my old LJ by the way. We were all self-important once. Some of us still are.
Anyway, I read this book recently, and I just need to share it with the world. That means spoilers, so beware. I also do these things in huge detail, if you didn’t check out my DAYD critique.
This book is called City of Bones, by Cassandra Clare.