hot knife
hi from a rainy day here in the midatlantic

an awesome video by one of my top favorites.

Every so often I just get overwhelmed by Fiona Apple being the half-sister of Blair Sandburg. Ahem.

Also, Maude Maggart appears in this video on the left side of the screen. Maude has a higher voice just as beautiful and completely unique from Fiona's.  :)

Creature from the Black Lagoon
We had to watch The Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954), because of The Shape of Water.  So here is my review.
The wikipedia entry has a lot of great facts.  I totally have a donation set up to give $3 to Wikipedia every month.  :)

The first thing I was impressed by is the sophistication of the female lead, Kay, played by Julie Adams.  I didn't recognize Adams from anything else, even though she's been in a ton of films opposite many of the great leading me, including Elvis!  Kay is a scientist but doesn't get credit for her work... so everyone else is Dr. So and So, except her.  :P It really made me think about the recent biopic about Jane Goodall and how she went to work at Gombe, Tanzania, in association with Louis Leakey, who helped her get funding so that she could study chimps and get a PhD from Cambridge without ever having gone to university beforehand!   Goodall first went to Gombe in 1960, and they stipulated that her mother had to go with her!  So that is similar to the way Kay is treated in the movie... she is always the object of concern and protection.  But she does get to drive the speedboat and is the only person to survive direct contact with the monster. 

Kay's boyfriend Dr. David Reed is an ichthyologist and is a sympathetic character.  The stupid is mostly centered in Dr. Mark Williams, David's "boss" from the aquarium in California, who is driven by some idea of bagging the creature as a trophy, even though David is very sensible about studying its habitat and not trying to kill it.    David is a likeable guy, who treats Kay like a real person and is sensible about her ambitions, and he tries to be fair to the creature, who is really very dangerous, with a body count that mounts up quickly.  Brown people are pretty much toast in this film. ):

A huge highlight of this film are the many long scenes underwater. This is in real contrast to the Shape of Water, where only the final scene takes place under water.  The images of Kay swimming, with the Gill-man following her underwater are amazing.  When the film was shot, they hired two guys to play the creature, one on land and one in the water.  (Not sure why the water guy couldn't also be the land guy).  Water guy is Ricou Browning, who started doing underwater scenes in the 1940s at Wakulla Springs and Weeki Wachi in Florida, and has directed underwater scenes up to Boardwalk Empire in 2010 (including Thunderball, the 1966 Bond film)!  This is pretty cool, because my head canon all along is that Gill and Elisa move to Florida and set up an attraction. There are still mermaid shows at Weeki Wachi!!  all this is to say, you will be amazed at how beautifully the Gillman swims along underwater in that suit, which they did an amazing job with. In my mental conception of the Creature from the Black Lagoon, I had only images of the Creature outside the water, on land, kind of lurching along very woodenly. This is not the movie you will see!!  Only a few scenes feature the creature on land (and unfortunately, they are kind of wooden).  The creature in his element is amazing, and you can totally see why Guillermo Del Toro was fascinated to remake the whole concept.  The score is pretty typical of monster movies, but, it is striking how enjoyable it is to watch long, LONG underwater scenes with no dialogue of any kind, no sound effects, just the score and maybe some burbling.    I feel like this is why Elisa uses sign language.  There is a lot of frantic gesturing underwater when the two scientists are swimming about with their flippers and Aqualungs.  This also brought back childhood memories of Jacques Cousteau, who developed the Aqua-lung, and whose movie The Silent World won a Palme d'or at the 1956 Cannes Film Festival -- so they had the technology in the 1950s to make amazing underwater films, and that is what  they did!    "Here zee ocean is teeming with life, but everywhere zair are signs of man's encroachment." -- The Brain, pretexting as Jacques Cousteau. (Please enjoy this episode of P&B, if you've never had the joy of it.  Rob Paulsen, who voices Pinky, also voiced Arthur in the cartoon series of the Tick. Pinky and the Brain is by far my top favorite thing Steven Speilberg ever did.)

All this to say, I really enjoyed the Creature from the Black Lagoon.  It does show some of its prejudices from the times, (the boat captain is a caricature that made me think of Stinking Badges), but on the plus side, it is gripping and shot so beautifully underwater that it is very fun to watch.    I give it four out of five stars.  :)

fic: "You're Awfully Quiet" (Steve/Bucky; River God/Elisa)
This story contains MAJOR SPOILERS for THE SHAPE OF WATER.  If you have not seen that movie, and do want spoilers, do not read this story.   This story is written for International Fanworks Day, with Bucky and Steve talking over the events of The Shape of Water.
PS, I got the movie poster!! from my local art house. I'm hoping to hang it on my bathroom door!!!  :D

“You’re awfully quiet,” Steve said.

It wasn’t true.  Bucky wasn’t any quieter than he normally was.  It was just that after dinner and a movie Steve’s mouth was usually running a mile a minute.  The unusual silence was on Steve, not Bucky.

“Nah,” Bucky said.  Besides, he was brushing his teeth.

“Did you like the movie?” Steve dared to ask.spoilers for The Shape of WaterCollapse )

Valentines Day Drabble Challenge for Team Death's Pizzas :) 8 drabbles

Thanks very much to the lovely folks at spn-bigpretzel for this drabble challenge.  I wrote 17 drabbles in all (my goal was 14).  :D

~Jody loves her house~

Even after everything, Jody has never considered selling the house. She remembers the first walk-through so clearly, when she and Sean fell in love with the place. She remembers choking and laughing through streaming tears when the flue didn’t work the first time they tried to use the fireplace. She remembers the precious love they made later, the roar of flames perfectly stoked. She remembers painting Owen’s room robin’s egg blue, love and hope devolving to heartbreak. She’s so glad now, the house is full of life again, girls becoming powerful women in the home she’ll fight to keep.


Bobby Singer taught Jody all he knew about warding a home. She never knew such things existed, or rather, she regarded it as pleasant folklore or harmless superstition. Now she would never consider closing the year without tacking holly over every windowsill, or passing a cross-quarter day without smudging. She invited Father Christopher every year to bless the house, painted salt onto every sill, inscribed dozens of holy names round and round the house, Enochian and hoodoo inked onto every lintel, cold iron and silver blades ready to hand in every room. Bobby’s legacy means the world to Jody.

~Jody loves her job~

Jody Mills loves being Sheriff. Fighting monsters is something she does on her own time, but her everyday job entails bringing law and order to Minnehaha County. She checks in on the folks in rehab, the kids in juvenile detention, learns their names and their stories, and works hard to help them stay on the straight and narrow once they get out. Bobby Singer may have been a drunk, but he was so much more. So aren’t they all. Jody knows now just how many horror stories are true, and she’s ready with a listening ear and a warm gun.

~the firing range~

The women head out to the firing range for rest and relaxation, honing their skills side by side. Earmuffs in place, they fire round after round, accurate, deadly. It’s not competition between them, just a rare sisterhood in hitting the target, switching from pistol to rifle to shotgun, hand, eye, and body all working in harmony, talent, hard work and determination making them who they are. Back at the house, Jody and Donna lay out the weapons, supervising as the girls break down, clean, oil, and reassemble. The women are in it together, expert at every weapon in their arsenal.

~the world~

Castiel stood for thousands of years, a Watcher, a task no human could endure. But Castiel was made that way, glorying in all of his Father’s Creation, glorying in his blessed task of watching. Waves, clouds, wind in leaves, every minuscule grain of sand was miraculous to Castiel, showing forth God’s glory into Castiel’s many worshipful eyes. Castiel was reassigned, remade as a warrior of the Lord, but he never forgot how to see the wonder in every aspect of all his Father had made, all the Lord had proclaimed was good in the waters, on earth, beneath the heavens.

~places of worship~

Castiel loves alcoves. In a phone booth, rare as they are these days, one may stand, receiver held to one’s ear, watching the world hurry past. Castiel loves the darkest rear seat in a dive bar, benches in parks and at bus stops, corners where almsgivers drop their spare change into the begging cup. Castiel has been the one in need, many times now; he knows what it is to be seen or unseen, to be loved or uncared for. Castiel loves the opportunity for benison, for succor, for redemption. Castiel loves a quiet chapel, whenever, wherever it may appear.


Castiel loves a swing set. There’s a reason Angels build gateways to Heaven on playgrounds (not just that the sandbox makes a convenient staging ground for the transmigration mandala). The rocking cradle meditation of a swing set awakens children’s innocent insight: they remember the power of flight inscribed on the deepest part of the human soul. Children throw all the strength of their whole bodies into that urge to soar, to transcend the limitations of physical laws. Every child knows, deep down: it is possible to swing that hard, to go all the way up. Castiel’s been, and can confirm.

~a room of his own~

That robe hanging on the back of the door, maybe used to be some dead guy’s robe, but it’s Dean’s robe now. Those are his boots by the door, his clothes in the closet, his secret undies in the bureau. His beat-up paperbacks, porno mags, blankets, weapons, memory foam, Those are his empties, waiting for recycling. Everything in this room belongs to Dean, not just the creased and faded snaps of Mom and Dad and Sammy on the wall. That’s his stereo, his LPs (not John’s, not Mary’s). He’s not putting anybody out. It’s been a long time coming.

Valentines Day Drabble Challenge for Team Death's Pizzas :) 7 drabbles

~Dean’s cassettes~

Dean never plays his cassettes anymore. Some he bought or copied, but most are mixes John and Mary made for each other. It kills Dean when the tape snaps or stretches out or spools into loops and wears away for the last time, the old LP pops lost forever, his parents’ overdubs memorex no more. Sam finally convinced Dean to digitize the tapes, and it seems so bizarre that the whole box of tapes, so monumental, so treasured, fits on his phone. When Mary came back, Dean showed her the tapes, let her pick whatever mix she wanted to hear.

~running shoes~

Sam gets up and ties on his shoes, no matter how tired he is, no matter how much effort it takes or how pitiful running feels compared to the problems he and Dean face. Sam and Dean have coffers of gold, now, lying in gleaming piles down in the Bunker’s deepest vaults. Sam never thought he’d be rich, but like every kid, he dreamed: beaches, parties, beautiful girls. It’s the little things, though: fresh food in the bunker kitchen, new running shoes when he needs them, beer and ammo and magazines for Dean. Sam thanks his forebears for small favors.

~diner salad~

If Sam never eats another Slim Jim in his life it will be too soon. Cheetos, Doritos, Combos, pork rinds, pretzels, even popcorn, Sam is sick of it all. Even M&Ms and Snickers have lost their appeal. After years on the road, Sam wants nothing more than the crunch of something that once had roots in the ground. That’s all he asks. Even some cut up iceberg lettuce strewn with shredded ham and American cheese. Even styrofoam tomatoes or bitter cucumbers. Anything Sam can loosely define as a vegetable satisfies so much more than any bag of processed crap.

~Ruby’s knife~

Ruby never lied, not really. She served her god as best she could, tried to do right as she saw it. She believed Sam was the chosen one, her kind’s messiah. Sam can’t blame her for any of that. He is grateful, though, for the knife — the Kurdish knife, one of a kind, that kills demons. It killed Ruby. So, in Sam’s head, it maybe comes close to even: the gift of a knife, the ending of a demon life. Whenever he wields it, he’s back there, with her warm lips, her blood, and the twisted love in her eyes.

~Sam’s best spellbook~

You might say, Sam Winchester can kill you with his brain. Inside Sam’s head are spellbooks, lexicons, bestiaries, grimoires, tomes of Latin, Enochian, Akkadian, Hebraic, Solomon’s keys, witches’ alphabets, hoodoo jingles. He always loved ancient languages, but now, his understanding of a rare branch of Canaanite could mean life or death. Sam loves computers, good libraries, but he’s hardwired his own brain with all the knowledge he needs most. Even when Lucifer got in his noggin, shouting and wearing him down, Sam lived on. One of the most powerful spellbooks ever compiled is a living compendium inside Sam Winchester’s brain.


Sam paints the flowing sigils of Enochian, the flat, incantatory syllables of the Angelic programming language ringing along in his mind. Sometimes Sam wonders why Angels are so basic. Why make such powerful immortal beings so simple and unsophisticated? Then he thinks of Castiel, who never stops struggling to understand more about humans and about his father’s Creation. Does every Angel wonder? Or is Castiel just buggy? Why did God make humans and Angels so easy to frag? Slapping a bloody hand against the banishing sigil, Sam’s just grateful right now it works. Maybe that was Chuck’s plan all along.

~the conference table~

Usually, he’s working too hard, poring over books he’s already sifted through a dozen times over, trying to save the world again, and yet again. Sometimes, though, they win, and Sam can relax, basking in the gleam of green-shaded lamps, soothed by the the air filters’ hushing lullabye, and the gleaming golden wood of the conference table seems almost to sing… how many of Sam’s own ancestors worked here, cross-referencing some of the same books Sam just reshelved? Sam sips his scotch, acknowledging his own place in the lineage, the something more he never thought he’d actually find.

Valentines Day Drabble Challenge for Team Death's Pizzas :) 2 drabbles
I spent a week fighting the flu and now I'm mostly better.

Here is a drabble about something Sam loves. I'll be adding more drabbles to this page I hope!

~ meditation rug ~

After the fire, Sam had no clue how long Dean’s hunting trip was gonna take. The Moores went through her things and Sam stored what was left, what was singed, what was his. (John left lockers everywhere.)

Now, Sam’s gotten some of that life back. Art books, philosophy journals, crooked mugs with Jess’s initials scratched into the bottom, the meditation rug she embroidered with the sigils Sam compulsively marked around every door he’d ever slept behind. The rug smells a little like soot, but it’s soft against the bunker’s floor. Sam breathes deep and even, heart full of quiet gratitude.

I think we're supposed to keep adding drabbles to the same page, because spam!  but anyway I had time for a second one:

cut! this one's rated Adult :DCollapse )

thank you fandom snowflake!
day 13 Set Some Goals -- I mistakenly did this back on day 3.  :P

day 14 Issue a challenge!  I wanted to issue a valentines challenge, and then, lo and behold, I found a valentines challenge to join in!  yay!!

day 15 love letter to fandom.

Dear Fandom,
Somehow, I was born a fan. Like a Lady Gaga song: I was born this way!  And because of that, for a really long time, I was WEIRD. I spent my whole childhood and much of my adolescence being WEIRD.  But eventually I found other fans and we found mutual fandoms.  Then in the mid 90s the internet happened.  Those of you who have always had the internet can't imagine what a big deal this was to us.  Suddenly, slash (which had been around for a really long time) became a thing you could subscribe to (hello Mulder/Krycek!!) and dive into (yowza 852 Prospect!!) and actually Live In, from day to day (woot woot LJ!!!). Fandom has given me the freedom to enjoy my own tastes and to revel in them, because somewhere, out there, are other fans like me who LOVE IT.   The squee heard round the world is my squee.  Thank you fandom!!  for the joy, the wild creativity, the love, the weird and the wonder of it all.  Ladies, you make my world go round!  :)

in other news, Ursula K LeGuin died yesterday at the age of 88.  What a life well-lived.

And, here is a good article about the Tick.

Fandom Snowflake 12: create a fanwork! : Leverage fic
Here is a Leverage fic I created for .  It stars Tara and Parker with a little bit of spark between the two of them, and is endgame OT3, Parker/Hardison/Eliot, but is rated PG.


“You look great tonight,” Tara said to Parker, looking her right in the eyes.

Parker resisted the urge to look herself up and down. She was wearing black tights, of course, her favorite pair of low heeled black boots because of their excellent tread and water repellent qualities, and a black top. Okay, the top was maybe one that Sophie had picked out for her saying something like “feminine blah blah blah shoulders blah a little cleavage you know works wonders, Parker.”

Parker squinted suspiciously at Tara. “Thank you?” She tried not to upspeak but it was so confusing to have a grifter who was kind of on the team, kind of not on the team, and who was definitely not Sophie even though Sophie had promised Parker that she, Sophie, was not actually dead (usually people who were buried were dead but not, Parker had to admit, always), and that she, Tara, was a good friend of Sophie’s and that she, Parker, could trust her (Tara).

Tara continued to smile warmly with a bit too little blinking, and Parker continued to squint.

Read more...Collapse )

Fandom Snowflake #11: life changers!
Day 11 - Share a book/song/movie/tv show/fanwork/etc that changed your life.

As a lifelong fannish person, I feel like my life has been changed by books, songs, movies, tv shows, and fanworks so many times in life!!!!!   My whole life is like a chronology of being swept away by the most amazing creations of art, music and literature.

Maybe a simple timeline this time:  :D
1968: born.  Didn't see Star Trek until many years later though.  Subliminal memories of Dark Shadows.
1972 - 1975 Kolchak the Night Stalker.  Learned many valuable techniques to foil zombies, vampires, and runaway homunculi.  A few years ago I did a really fun cosplay as Kolchak, complete with hat, seersucker suit, camera and tape recorder!
1972 - 1975 Kung Fu.  Learned many valuable Zen precepts; also knew I needed to play the flute.
1973 - 1978 The Six Million Dollar Man.  My first cyborg boyfriend. :)

During this time period watched many key ABC made for television movies including Isn't It Shocking (1973), Don't Be Afraid of the Dark (1973), Killdozer (1974), Planet Earth (1974), The Stranger Within (1974), A Cry in the Wilderness (1974).   All three of my above favorite shows started out with Made for TV movies as pilots.  I lived in a rural area where we only got one tv channel (ABC) and didn't have a movie theatre except for the drive-in in the summertime.  :)  There were also movies about the Bermuda Triangle and Killer Bees.... don't exactly remember them, but those were certainly big topics in my childhood brain.

I started reading comics at this time, and I still have the outside cover of my copy of Killdozer!  the comic book adaptation of the made for tv movie based on the Theodore Sturgeon short story.  :P  My favorite comics as a child were Swamp Thing (1972-76), Dr. Strange, Starfire (8 issues 1976), Son of Satan, and anything that looked scary.  "Vault of Evil"? Lemme at it!!

1977 Star Wars -- I actually saw this in the movie theatre, walked in just as C3PO was staggering across the desert. wow!!!  It didn't transform me in a huge Star Wars fan but I did read all the novelizations, and my favorite was Splinter of the Mind's Eye (1978) by Alan Dean Foster.  :P

Top Favorite SF books as a kid: A Wrinkle in Time and lots more by Madeleine L'Engle; The X Factor and tons more by Andre Norton...  The Tombs of Atuan is my favorite Ursula LeGuin book....  and I loved animal stories like The Rats of NIMH and Watership Down... but my husband reminded me to add The Silver Metal Lover by Tanith Lee, one of my favorite books of all time.  Lee wrote slash and was to my mind a pioneer in gender fluid characters...  so good!  Sometime during the 80s I read Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, which I freaking memorized.  :D Another favorite was the parody Doon by the National Lampoon.  so funny!

In the 80s I read Saga of the Swamp Thing by Alan Moore and thought it was pretty cool he chose My Favorite Comic to rebuild comics in from the ground up. :D   Also collected a complete run of The Sandman by Neil Gaiman, and John Constantine Hellblazer as they came out. Constantine  was a Moore creation who first appeared in Saga of the Swamp Thing #25 (1984) when I was a sophomore in high school.

My favorite sf movies to come out in the 80s
Dune (1984) dir. David Lynch, starring Kyle McLachlan, Brad Dourif, Jose Ferrer, Patrick Stewart, and Sting
Buckaroo Banzai (1984) starring Peter Weller, John Lithgow, Jeff Goldblum, Clancy Brown, Christopher LLoyd
Starman (1984) starring Jeff Bridges
Altered States (1980) dir. Ken Russell, starring William Hurt

1986 Graduated from high school
1987 - 1994 -- Star Trek the Next Generation.  I still remember where I was (the TV common room at my college) when I first heard Patrick Stewart say "to boldly go where no ONE has gone before!!"
1990 - 91.  Twin Peaks.  I was already a huge David Lynch fan, so I was ready for it, but wow, what an amazing show!!
1993~  the year I got married, the XFiles started.  It was everything I always wanted in a show.
Mulder/Krycek was not my first slash pairing though, because I could always sense the slashiness between Kirk and Spock, regardless that I had never heard of slash.  I knew what t'hyla meant from Gene Roddenberry's own footnote (in the Star Trek Motion Picture novel i think, 1979).

Probably around 1994 when the internet was born, I first found slash and fandom.  This undoubtedly changed my life. :P The X Files was perfectly positioned as a show fascinated by all the 1970s SF I was steeped in as a kid (even going so far as to acknowledge their debt to Kolchak the Nightstalker) but also, it was one of the first Vancouver shows (which gave birth to my beloved Supernatural through the influence of directors like Kim Manners).

My favorite movies are mostly comedy, like Peter Sellers and Mel Brooks, but one of my top favorites is Desperado (1995), dir. Robert Rodriguez, starring Antonio Banderas, Selma Hayek, and Steve Buscemi.  I remember so well seeing this in the theatres and laughing at the over the top violence while everyone else was expecting a romantic comedy!!

The Sentinel (1996-1999), another Vancouver show, introduced me to subtle cosplay, as I went about dressed as Jim for several years (you can tell us apart because I am 5'1").

In the 90s there was also Buffy of course (1997-2003) and Angel (1999-2004), and my favorite Whedon product, Firefly (2002-3). I love me some Jayne Cobb. 

In 2002 I finally completed my dissertation on Mary Shelley and feminist utopias. :)

One of my favorite writers is Ben Edlund, who wrote for Angel and Firefly, and went on to write for Supernatural. He started out in comics with "The Tick" (14 issues ~1991), the Tick animated series (1994), The Tick live action with Patrick Warburton (2001), and now, there is a current Tick show on Amazon.  He also worked with Christopher McCullough, who with Doc Hammer makes the Venture Bros (2004~), one of the most biting parodies of fannish concern ever made. :)

In 2005 Supernatural went on the air, combining my love of tormented warriors, legendary monsters, rock music, and muscle cars.  In 2007 I started watching it and soon started up on LJ after about 15 years of lurking behind the scenes, and starting writing fic of my own.

April 4, 2014: The Winter Soldier -- YES.  Give me all the Buckys!!

2017 - ten years on LJ

2018 -- I will turn 50, my marriage will be 25 years, and my son will turn 18!

Fandom Snowflake Challenge banner 2018

MCU action figure roll call
Here is a roll call of my 3.75" MCU action figures:
1,2. Bucky and Steve of course. 
(I also have secret clone!Bucky and Steves lying dormant just in case of emergency.)
3, 4.  Clint and Natasha.
5, 6.  Loki and Thor (in his snuggie)
7. Valkyrie.  this is classic blonde comics Brunhilde.
8, 9, Wanda and Vision.  This is MCU Wanda, not comics Scarlet Witch.  I don't have a Pietro . ):
10. Dr. Stephen Strange, master of the mystic arts.  Both Strange and Wanda come "magic"  which is delightful.
11.  Sam Wilson aka Falcon (his wings don't come off)
12. James Rhodes aka War Machine, unfortunately you can't see his face.
13.  T'Challa of Wakanda aka Black Panther (fully suited)
14.  Carol Danvers aka Captain Marvel
15. Sharon Carter
16. Elektra
17. Antman (he also came with his Giant Ant, Ant'ny)
18. Spiderman
19. Gamora (she is slightly too tall.... )
20. Tony (to get him with a face, I have a little action guy
21. Hulk (not an action figure, but a pvc)
22. Deadpool (a Dorbz)
23. Lucky (Clint's dog) and 24, Scraps (Bucky and Steve's little dog they adopted)
25. Some guy. Idk who he is, but he is the right size.  Our luck he works for Anvil. ):
26. Peggy Carter (a felt version)
27. Foggy Nelson (a paper doll version)
28. Daredevil  (he is always in such a bad mood and won't go near the other figures esp. if Elektra is there)
29, 30.  Groot and Rocket -- It's the Funko baby Groot in the pot and a tiny Rocket to be his BFF

My extra figures include :   three extra Captain America figures, an old Clint, a Loki whose horns don't come off, and an Iron Man in his suit.  Let me know if you need any of them or would like to trade.  :)

You may see my action figures and their tea parties at AO3 in my series,  Bucky and Steve: Relaxation figures.


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