Friday, November 30, 2001

Fic Recs on a Theme

The episode, "Vis a Vis", has been bothering me lately. Maybe it's just another example of how TPTB let so many answers slide in favour of a quick and dirty conclusion. So why was Tom so moody? What happened between B'Elanna and Steth? How did B'Elanna and Tom patch up their relationship (other than in the front seat of the Camaro)

Anyway, I shouldn't have feared. Thank goodness for the following fics which answered the questions TPTB should have taken care of. All of these stories are highly recommended. Dave Rogers' is the darkest of them all, and possibly my favorite of the bunch, while Julie Evans really manages to fill in all of the scenes with her usual flair. "Convincing Chakotay" by monkee hails the return of the Angry Warrior story while "New Sensations," also by monkee, takes that same story and adds a sensual twist. "Too Much Delta Quadrant Coffee" by Annie M is another dark view on the same events. Happy reading!
Smut defined.
I know I have mentioned that half of my class will be in jail after graduation for one reason or another. Only one of us will go to jail because she's in the wrong place at the wrong time (and it's not me). I really thought it would be my "fuzzy" accounting standards that would put me in the slammer, but apparently not. Apparently, it will be my love of shoes that will do me in. Check it out:

Which Evil Criminal are You?

Thursday, November 29, 2001

It's official, I'm sick. I've got aching muscles I didn't know I had. Anyway, thanks to you who sent me such lovely notes. Means so much to me as right now I'm just completely overwhelmed by RL and I'm so amazed at how incredibly nice people are to me, especially my team members, two of whom are at an extra class tonight taking notes for me as I honestly cannot sit/stand/lie in one position for any length of time. Anyway, I'm hoping I'll be up and around again tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 28, 2001

Roxann actually posted re the Wil Wheaton thing on the message board. Cool! Now that makes more sense.
I give up. I am getting sick. I was hoping I wasn't, but I am. I really can't even keep my eyes open right now and I've misplaced my cell phone... which I hope to find soon as at rather emotional moments like this, you really, really want to talk to your mother. I've also spilled hot water all over myself and the kitchen because my hands are so unsteady right now. So, to bed I go.
Simulations done and confirmed. Life is getting better. I've slapped a 10 pm deadline on the accounting project. I need sleep. I need food. I need to be somewhere other than the lab.
I know why I don't get accounting. It's fuzzy numbers. Two plus two equal equal five. I just can't get my brain to accept this. Not at all. In my world, two plus two always equals four. There are no rules to remember, nothing. Accounting is... it's just wrong! (Or I'm just frustrated - either works).
Kenny just gave me the new, improved financial ratios. Now, we're in business.
8 pm. Annoying itch at the back of my throat, pain in my shoulders and lower back, and slight case of the sniffles. But thankfully, no indigestion.
When you're delusional, it's easy to get confused over simple things. It took me about 15 minutes to understand the operating profit margin ratio, even with the formula right in front of me.

I was hoping for 9 pm, to get home in time for "Enterprise." At the snail's pace I'm going right now, I don't think that's going to happen. I'm already writing off "West Wing." As long as I get home before the freeze, though the comments from people arriving from outdoors is not optimistic. I'd hate to take to the ice in high heels. Might be amusing for other people though.
Brock just walked in. He said, "Welcome to Paradise."

I'm not the only delusional one around here.
Back in the lab. The goal is to be out before the extreme freezing temperatures hit and not stay here until 1 am, like we did yesterday. Today, we went to Denny's for a team lunch after our presentation (which went very well) - first time I've eaten since 8:30 pm last night and apparently, the guys were just as hungry. We ate and then discussed our financial analysis of the chocolate industry. Now, it's just a question of fixing numbers and writing the report out. Which they are working on fixing, while I come up with a second set of simulation numbers to confirm the set of answers we already have. Talk about applying the just-in time principle. Even this morning, I ran out to get the Murdoch paper, all 800 pages of it, bound at 9 am, just in time to get to our group practice at 10 am.

I really miss my overcoat.

Miserable Day

I feel like I've been transported back North, that's how darn cold it is here! Back there, a windchill of 30 was pleasant and a high of 32 was a heatwave - a cause for celebration! Heck, if it was 32 degrees out, I hit the ski slopes in shorts! But here, no, I'm freezing and hunched under my umbrella. The rain is bitterly cold - apparently it has the potential for sleet and snow (!!!) by tonight, if it at all. My suit did get soaked a bit, but my legs took the brunt of it - I'm really going to have to invest in a pantsuit one of these days, as the torrential rains have now put a run in my nylons and I still have 2 hours, 45 minutes to go before the presentation. I've been asking people if they have nailpolish, but alas, no. On a positive note, the last time I got caught in a thunderstorm wearing something that was dry-clean only, the dress actually shrunk (it was a double-layer dress, with the top layer shrinking so that bottom lining hung out), so in the case, I'm doing really well.

Note to self: next time I decide to pursue higher education, it will not be a program where what you wear and how you look is actually part of your grade.

I do hope it will snow though. When I'm inside and warm though.
Zendom update:

New update at the zendom site. Christine CGB interviews Dafna G, a slash writer from "The West Wing" fandom. It's a very good interview, personal, funny and very real. So enjoy a closer, more personal view at a fanfic writer! In two weeks, Lori and Liz will present a discourse on that classic work, "Talking Stick/Circle."

Tuesday, November 27, 2001

I don't think this night is ever going to end. I found a great ER spoiler site.
Because I've been in the lab since 7 pm with no possibility for parole until at earliest midnight, I've digressed every now and then. Love this little article.
My spam fic: How To Succeed In Tough Times... I got the title from an actual spam in my inbox.
I get easily confused these days. I end up on websites which are just way too hip for me. The graphics are spectacular and the navigation is a mystery. Apparently the new trend in navigation is to have lovely graphics which you just click, and voila, you're somewhere else. Once, I ended up on a site that just had a very cool picture on the front page and then the numbers 1 through 5 in tiny fonts right below it. That was it. I had no idea where I was, whose site it was, or where I was going. Still, the graphics were very cool.

IIn my journey through blogdom, I'm suddenly realizing just how small the Internet really is. In fact, all those authors whom I thought fled fandom are actually cooling their heels in "West Wing" or more often, "BtVS" or "Angel." And ya know, until a couple weeks ago, I didn't even know what "BtVS" stood for (and I call myself a fan girl, ha!). I did see the "Buffy" musical - my first and only (to date) experience with the Vampire Slayer. Campy it was, but it was also fun and cheesy. So anyway, I've found people like Annie Sewell-Jennings again and seeing familiar names is actually very soothing. In fact, if it wasn't for coming across Sabine's "West Wing" and "Sports Night" fic, I probably wouldn't have ever read anything in either fandom.

So I guess that theory I heard long ago, that you can connect to any site on the internet within 30 clicks, well, I guess it's true then. Provided you don't need to know where you're going.
Okay, the burnt smell has almost dissipated. Almost being the operative word.


I noticed someone from my alma mater stopped by here the other day, after being referred from the VVS8 site. So, hello!

In other weird alma mater news, my mother ran into someone at her gym who had gone to my school and had graduated a couple years after I did. My mother mentioned that I used to work at the newspaper and it turns out that this girl actually cut out a of couple of my articles and saved them.

I really should have stayed a journalist. More sleep. Less burned food. Probably wouldn't have this indigestion problem either.

And I promised to bake for the Christmas party at the office next week - they asked me to bring a copy of the recipe for the recipe book too. Easy: go to HEB, buy Tollhouse cookie dough, break into pieces, put on cookie tray, put oven on 350, burn.

I think I'm better off buying something.
Fic rec: I can't believe I did not include Lydia Bower's profoundly beautiful Dance Without Sleeping among my picks for the top fics of all time. This is simply a gorgeous, gorgeous fic - one of the first I read in the "X-Files" fandom and one of the best cancerfics from Scully's POV. Scully is detached, Mulder is hovering, but the end is oh so satisfying. When you're finished with that, there is a wonderful sequel, Into Each Other Sinking that is a must-read. Run, read, enjoy. (As with the other top recs, this one is also NC-17).
Note to self:
Do not attempt to cook when half-asleep. Better yet, don't cook at it. Especially when it's too dang cold out to open windows and sliding glass doors to vent the fumes.

Monday, November 26, 2001

Trek Weakest Link

I was glad to see that no one thought that Peru was in Asia and no one mentioned that Detroit was a state (I'll ignore the fact that Denise Crosby just named Alabama as the capital of New Hampshire). In general comments, all Trek actors redeemed themselves very well. As a team, they made more money ($40,000) in one round than the entire game I watched on Sunday - which was stars from old sitcoms (or something like that). It was nice to see Armin Shimmerman without make-up - but boy, with that backlighting, at first he looked like he had Quark ears! The stars were actually quite funny too - especially Armin - and William Shatner was downright charming. He even hugged Anne, and I think I saw a smile. A little one, but it was there .

The audience loved it too. Everyone was sooo sad when William Shatner was voted off. People were really sad when Roxann Dawson got voted off too and RD looked quite sad herself. I have to say, to steal a line from "Drive," she didn't look so tough right there. Bob Picardo, Wil Wheaton, Levar Burton and Armin Shimmerman were obviously the strongest of all the players. BP was the strongest link several rounds in a row and he is very charming. Makes me want to go to a con even more to meet some of these people as they are so funny and warm.

Bob Picardo had a great line. Armin didn't get a question right where the answer was "toupee" (even with me screaming it at the television) and so Picardo said that it was unforgivable for a follically-challenged man not to know the answer to this question. Pretty funny. People were also sad when Armin departed.

Anne had some interesting remarks such as: "Whose phaser was set on stupid?" and "Transport off the trash" or "Who will Klingon?" She asked William Shatner what he was famous for, LOL. She told Wil Wheaton he didn't really resemble a boy genius.

Now the weird Wil - Roxann thing. That was so strange. Roxann kept voting for Wil until she got voted off, with Wil being one of the who voted her off, saying this time it was for revenge. Anyway, Anne made some comments about Wil spelling his name with one L and called it pretentious. Roxann laughed the loudest and even clapped her hands. It was so strange. And then, during her remarks to the camera, Roxann said that she would be devastated if Wil won, because she couldn't believe he would come on to her like that on national television when he knew her husband would be watching and that it was very rude of Wil to do so. Keep in mind that Wil actually said something to the effect that he was voting Roxann off because he was madly in love with her. Sounded like a joke to me, but Roxann did not take it as a joke. I even rewound the tape. No, she was not joking. She sounded mad. Hopefully, these two did not end up in a green room together - but given that Wil is updating his blog, he obviously survived the RD encounter .

Anyway, the final total for the charity was $106 thousand-something (there were numbers after the six, but I forgot what numbers they were within about 5 seconds). Levar Burton was the lucky winner. Apparently, this sum was a record for the show. Cool.
For my latest fic transgression, I blame Rocky. Under her devilish influence, I answered monkee's "chicken fried fanfic" challenge. That would be the one where you have to use the six most necessary elements in a country song: trucks, prison, cold rain, trains, getting drunk and mama. You get extra points for getting a hound dog in there. I resisted as long as I could, I really did. May the muse forgive me.

On another note, Lori also answered the spamfic contest. Seven analyzes her spam mail! Very funny. Hopefully it will be up on her site soon.
Believe it or not, I answered my own challenge - the spam poem and relate it to fandom challenge, that is. It only took 23 spam letters to compile, plus a little creativity from my part, but there it is. I haven't decided whether it's fit for ASC yet. I'll just wait and see what zendom has to say about it. That's if I didn't leave them speechless by actually doing my own challenge...
I just finished compiling my FB from my Deja News account before that goes kaput on Dec. 1 and wow, I'm motivated to resume "Fugue in Blue Minor." I really am. I think the other projects will have to wait until I at least get part I finished here. And of course, Part I will have to wait until I survive this week.

On a positive note, I've just sent off the final draft for the Rupert paper to the boys. Now it's their problem .
Yes, I'm still procrastinating. Rupert just doesn't have the draw, you know? So I finally went and linked to all the blogs that have linked to me, with the exception of Wil Wheaton and my brother. Wil Wheaton doesn't really need my link, but his blog is incredibly amusing and fun to read. My brother's blog is just a little freaky, but you've been warned. Everyone else's opinion is simply their opinion, not necessarily mine.

In strange Blogger news, my archives for September have disappeared and this dismays me, because this means that all of my thoughts on September 11 are somewhere that is not here. Some things, you don't want to forget how you were feeling, you know?

If I tried to write about September 11 now, it wouldn't be the same. It would be almost clinical, far removed from the stress and emotion of that day. It would lack the fear and the concern I had for family and friends in NYC. It wouldn't quite convey the utter sense of dysfunction or the shock and grief of that day.
New music video! A friend of Ann's has made a P/T video set to Enrique Iglesias's "Hero" (be still my heart!). You can download it here. I'm especially gratified since the lyrics I chose for "Stay" are from "Hero" and in this music video, they are so approriate. Beautiful job. Definitely a keeper. Especially wonderful are the "Lineage" scenes, which seem to have more meaning when set to these particular lyrics.

Sunday, November 25, 2001

Weakest Link observations...
I decided to watch "The Weakest Link" while I inhaled dinner. Just two things: Peru is *not* in Asia and Detroit is *not* a state. 'nuff said.

Tomrrow: Trek on the "Weakest Link." I'm dying to know more about the Wil Wheaton & RD controversy. Note to self: set VCR.
Andrew said today, "I bet the work is hitting you like a freight train." Yeah, that's a pretty decent way of putting it. All I can think is, two more weeks, that's it, two more weeks. At least Andrew understands if I disappear suddenly - he's in a similar situation, but he at least is outta there in 5 months (I shouldn't complain, really - Andrew's on his second Masters and I'm only on my hero).

Anyway, staring the freight train in the engine, I'm coming to the grim realization that fic will have to wait - reading, writing, and of course, FB. My life is consumed by Rupert Murdoch, currency LP, accounting analysis, and oh yes, the two random simulation problems assigned last week, not to mention finals - next week. This time though, I've got coffee. Lots of it.
Blogging addiction...
I really should be working on something else, really should, considering that the marathon team meeting from hell is scheduled for tonight, but I've been blog-hopping. Here's where I've been:

Yes, enough already. I don't even know some of these people, yet I'm endlessly fascinated by what they have to say. But enough's enough: I've got to go and prepare for that meeting.
About Feedback...

I found this article by Te today about feedbacking and the lack thereof. The tone is definitely not my style, but it was interesting to read anyway, since Te put into words what many authors are thinking to begin with.

Lack of FB is a conversation I've been having on and off with someone for a while now and we both agree that when your fics end up in a dark black hole, that's the absolute worse. That's when you post a story and no one, absolutely no one, even responds. You wonder if anyone is reading you at all. You wonder if the story is terrible and no one wants to tell you. And then you notice another story that is getting all the accolades for the week and you try to stifle the green-eyed monster, but it's impossible. You wonder what that author did to get all that FB and you wonder what you can do to get some of that yourself. And then, things get reversed. All of a sudden, you get tons of FB and some poor author somewhere gets none.

Getting FB is one of those very, very strange things. It's so incredibly lovely when you get it and I probably even shouldn't talk, since I think I've been very fortunate in getting FB on a fairly regular basis, whether for new or for old fics. Just the other day, I got FB on W/D stories I had written years ago and that was wonderful, to know people were still reading those fics.

But at the same time, this "regular" FB thing is fairly new to me as well - there were days when I despaired of ever getting anyone to acknowledge that I existed. I remember once telling Liz that I could drop out of fandom and *no one* would notice. It could even be true today, who knows? If you're getting into fandom, it's important to realize that you've got to write because you *love* fandom and because you *want* to write. If you're doing it for the FB, you're going to be disappointed. Unfortunately, there are more writers than FBers out there.

That being said, FB is good and adored and I'm so grateful for every single word that people have taken time to write. I have saved nearly every piece of FB I've ever received. I keep it in my "Feedback" folder - something to soothe my ego when things aren't going well at all. When I'm especially down, I read the FB SnoopMary posted on ASC, the one with the subject line that nearly knocked me right out of my shoes and I came out of my reclusive fanfic writing status for just a second to show a coworker exactly what SnoopMary had written because I was so shocked.

So how do you get FB? Beats me. Conventional wisdom says that if you write something good, they will read it and then they will send you comments. Could be true - good stories move me to FB, whether publicly or privately, but lately with time being such a premium, I read but don't always FB in a timely manner. Sometimes I'll rec a story here without ever telling the author. Sometimes the story sits in my newsreader for weeks at a time and then I think that it's too late to FB. Excuses, excuses. I've made a resolution to myself to FB more during my break - after all, working only 2 days a week and not having much else to do, what excuse could I possibly have *not* to FB?

Note to self: Feed the author. Makes them happy. Keeps them writing.

Saturday, November 24, 2001

Could you, would you...?

I issued yet another challenge to zendom based on this here contest hosted by the very funny I added a caveat of my own - make it about fandom, any fandom, and see what you come up with. The poems from last year's contest are very, very funny. This is the first time I've seen a use for the multitude of spam that clutters my inbox day after day after day after day after day after day...

You know, one of these days, zendom is going to force moi to actually take up one of these challenges I keep issuing. Let's see, there was the "10 Little Indians" challenge (based on the Agatha Christie novel), the Pretty Woman challenge, the plot-less fic challenge and now this... write a fic using the spam in your inbox. Indeed, it's almost too tempting for words.
I forgot another couple of writing projects and in the interest of fairness, voila:

  • A story that will wrap up C/7 for once and for all and make sense of what TPTB did - if that is even possible. I'd say more, but then that would be giving it away. Parts have already been written, including some smut written (gasp) under my own name. Wonders will never cease. Now to finish it, but the muse keeps getting dragged off into non-C/7 directions.
  • Finish "Stay." This is one story that I really feel the need to get absolutely right - maybe it's the fact I incorporated song lyrics (no, just at the beginning of each part - it's *not* a songfic!). Anyway, got some comments back on it and once I take care of those (hopefully sometime this week), it will be ready for ASC. Maybe.
  • Finish "All Things," my Jake story. It's already been beta'd by a couple different people and I have a couple more corrections to make before unleashing it on the unsuspecting public, but it's been collecting dust since May, I think, and I'm ready for this one to make its debut.
I didn't want to let insomnia go to waste, so I went ahead and did a quick and dirty HTML version of Come Darkness. Now that I've re-read it, I'm thinking this was actually written in late 1998, early 1999, given the style. I definitely think there are places I need to rework this story, but that's for another time.
Current pet peeve...

People who ask you to pick them up from the airport to drive them back to school but don't tell you when their flight actually gets into town. Which is why I'm up at 4 am, checking flight schedules, because it's not like I can wait all day for this person to get back, can I? And since this person is flying back from LA, this means he can show up anytime between 3 pm and 10 pm - 10 pm being *way* too late for me to get back. As much as I don't want to do this, if he doesn't show up on the 4:50 pm flight, I'm going to have to leave without him. As it was, I wanted to leave at between 1 and 2 pm, so this is really making me nuts.
Neat Things...
A story which I wrote in 1999, but didn't know I had posted to ASC, made it into Katie's update tonight. Very cool, as I didn't have a copy of this story and even Liz couldn't find a copy on her hard drive, so I assumed it was MIA forever. This was another story in my alternate DS9 universe and the one that had the W/Ders teasing me about a "space battle fetish" (I *don't* know what they are talking about... but Cheile even put it in her sig...). Anyway, it's so nice to see this story again and I will be able to post "Come Darkness" to my site sometime this week. ::happy dance::

Friday, November 23, 2001

I keep wanting to write random fics. Not new fandoms, btw, but just dabbling in other fandoms. For instance, there is a "West Wing" idea nagging at me - nothing deep, nothing major, but it could be really fun to write. The "X-Files" always has a lure, but I'm in awe of the talent already out there, so I only attempted to write a fic once - What Is, a coda to "Requiem," the season seven finale. It's been quite a while since I wrote it and actually now that I reread it, I don't hate it. Not at all. Surprising.

Things I want to do this winter:

  • Finish Part I of "Fugue in Blue Minor." Liz is already working on the beta for what I've got done and at this point, it's just a short trek (no pun intended) to finish off Part I. It's Part II that's giving me heart palpitations and slowing down the work. But I did say December 2001... I may amend that to February of 2002.
  • Work on the Jadzia story - "Blue" - that I owe for the DS9 project Una and I are putting together. "Blink" is already finished and Una has finished one story as well.
  • Begin novelization of "Drive." So many questions to be answered, so many blanks to fill in - this is really a project I'm looking forward to.
  • Write that "West Wing" fic which keeps intruding in my brain.
  • Write that "Gladiator" fic which will wrap up the Maximus/Lucilla relationship once and for all. "A Fine White Mist" was supposed to have done that, but I wasn't entirely happy with the way that fic came out. So I'm planning to attack it again. I also would like to do one with Maxmius and his wife, Selene, but we'll see.
  • Finish that story I owe Tracy... from a year ago? I found a part of it written out in a notebook, so I really should get on this one. Tracy has been very sweet and patient about it, even though she did ask for this particular story as a birthday gift. I'm a terrible, terrible person, I know.
  • Write my article for zendom. Everyone else, I think, has finished theirs - I need to get started on mine.

*sigh* So many ideas, so little time...
What I did on my Thanksgiving break...

I vowed about two years ago never to go shopping on the day after Thanksgiving, no matter how tempting the deals. The last time I attempted (2 years ago), I was on the prowl for a VCR. Mine was going batty (would only play videos in black and white) and so a great deal on a Sony VCR caught my eye. The catch? The great price was only going to last between 5 am and 6 am. So yup, I woke up at the crack of dawn and dragged myself down to the store, flyer in hand. I purchased the VCR and came home and went back to sleep. My brother came to check out my new purchase later on that day and he glanced at the sales flyer and then at the VCR. He looked at me and said, "Um, what were you planning to buy?" Turns out, I went to the *wrong* store and purchased the *wrong* VCR. So instead of Best Buy, I ended up at Circuit City and instead of the Sony, I ended up with the Panasonic. After that, I figured that waking up at the crack of dawn was overrated - especially if you didn't end up with what you went there for in the first place.

Well, I did it. Today, I drove to Best Buy and picked up Sarah Brightman's latest, Classics. They were selling CDs for $10 between 8 am and noon. Who can resist? Tower Records had CDs for $5 between 8 am and noon, but it was misleading; I called the store actually since I didn't want to make the trip downtown and fight traffic/parking battles. Anyway, the Brightman CD was actually $14.99 and only select titles were $5. At any rate, the entire city seemed to have converged on Best Buy for this particular sale, so I spent more time in line than it took me to a) drive there and b) pick out the CD. So far, I'm really enjoying Classics. It's nice and soothing - a perfect counterpoint to the remaining two pages I have to write on Rupert.

I also built a wheelbarrow today. Yes, four of the screws are upside down, but that's really, really minor. The wheelbarrow is sturdy and it rolls. What more could you possibly want? The directions were very complicated - they were made for Tool Time people like Tim Allen, not people like me who have never built a wheelbarrow before. According to the pictures on the box, there were only four steps in assembling this thing. I must have taken at least ten, not to mention all of the times I had to unscrew and rescrew the pieces together. Too bad I can't put this on my resume.

Wednesday, November 21, 2001

Happiness is...

I just found a copy of Alison Weir's The Princes in the Tower for $5.86. Lovely and in pristine condition. I've been dying to get my hands on this book since finishing up The War of the Roses. Reviews suggest that Weir is very much a biased Tudor biographer and that she leaves very little doubt that Richard III was indeed the fiend that Thomas More and others portrayed him to be. I've also found Royal Blood by Bertram Fields, which, according to the reviews, is biased towards Richard III. I may pick up this book after going through Weir's findings, but the fact that I don't know much about Fields' work as a biographer is the only thing that is holding me back - he's an entertainment lawyer, it seems, and this looks like it's his frst book. The last time I purchased an allegedly historical novel by a first time author - "The Diary of Anne Boleyn" by Robin Maxwell - I found it riddled with inaccuracies and while Anne came off nearly saintly (she wasn't), the reputation of Elizabeth I took a beating - it was very hard to stomach Maxwell's thoughts on what Elizabeth's relationship with Dudley truly was like. Not for a minute could I buy it. And despite the bias in The Princes in the Tower I've read about, Weir's reputation (especially for her incredibly detailed The Six Wives of Henry VIII) speaks for itself (even if she can be a bit arrogant with her assumptions at time).

However, my favorite all-time Richard III work would have to be the novel The Sunne in Splendor by Sharon Kay Penman. Now that was a fantastic read, one that portrayed Richard in a very positive light and made his relationship with his wife, Anne, much less sinister than what later Tudor biographers would claim. I wonder if the bias everyone is talking about in Weir's book will also lead to the allegation that Richard not only murdered his nephews, but also Anne? Anyway, it's definitely a book I'm looking forward to reading and when that's done, I may request the Fields book from the library (though I did find a copy online for $4). I simply cannot wait to just kick back and read, read, read! Only two more weeks until I can do that!

Tuesday, November 20, 2001

Blog, Take Two...

Between Netscape 6.2 and Windows ME, I really think I'm going to have to chuck something out of a window. I was hoping that 6.2 wouldn't be so buggy, but it has some very strange quirks and I think I may go back to 4.7, no matter how much I really want to use 6.2. As a matter of principle, I won't use IE unless push comes to shove, and boy, do I feel shoved right now.

At any rate, I wrote up an entire long post about why I'm a blogger wannabe, but it got eaten by the quirky Netscape, and I'm much too incoherent right now to try to resurrect that post. I don't think y'all are missing much though - you got the bottom line. I'm simply not Sylvia Plath-ish and while I love writing angst, my RL is curiously devoid of angst (well, other than that SUV dilemma I had over the last 48 hours, but resolved this afternoon). I think I'm Mary Richards.

Also, I thought about installing comments here and even went about researching on how to do such a thing, but then decided the only one allowed free speech on this blog would be me .

Well, ME keeps nagging me to download an update of some kind. Maybe if I do, it will stop having temper tantrums.

Good night, moon.
Things Crossed Off My To Do List...

  • The SEC paper is done! I only hope I sound convincing as I advise an august body such as the FASB that GAAP is horribly outdated and needs to be revised.
  • I'm 3 pages into the Rupert Murdoch expose. Not so bad as I need to get to page 5 by Sunday. Only thing is, it's very difficult to write about "The Environmental and Organizational Context" when Murdoch enjoyed killing and skinning rabbits as a child. I'm starting to think the boys with their competencies have an easier job of analyzing Mr. Murdoch.
  • Present value of a discounted cash flow has been licked. It only took me a couple hours but I will never forget how to do it now and that is the point of an education, isn't it?
  • Currency LP looked at. This doesn't mean I've come up with the equations or the model, only that I've read the case and then figured that it was a pretty darn good problem. I think this is the same problem that was given on last year's final that no one got right. Very, very comforting.

    I still have one more reading assignment to do before tomorrow, but luckily it's not in a class where the professor calls on you randomly and expects you to launch into a soliquoy on the topic. It's almost 12:30, but I think I'll probably do this assignment now anyway.

Monday, November 19, 2001

My Top Five Fanfics
My top fanfic picks, as posted to Zendom (and yes, I cheated a little bit by combining two picks into one and throwing in another one entirely that I had almost forgotten about):

Yes, there is a rhyme and a reason to these particular picks. Mail me if you're curious.

Jintian and Jemima have made their recs public as well.

Sunday, November 18, 2001

This, That and Some More of This

Books I'm Reading: This is under "fun," btw, not mandatory. "Mosaic" by Jeri Taylor. Next up is "The Golden Compass" by Phillip Pullman that a co-worker gave me for my birthday last year and I still haven't made it past the first 15 pages. I probably should get it done before my birthday rolls around again. That would be a good thing.

Fanfiction I'm Reading: Barbara Watson's "Connect the Dots" series. She makes sense of gosh darn near everything. Long, but this series reminds me exactly of why I liked "Voyager" in the first place. Plus, her latest edition is about "Blood Fever." What's not to love? Also, I'm reading Contact High, a story that made the Top Five Fanfics of All Time lists of two zendom members.

Fanfiction I Want to Read: Okay, so this fic doesn't exist anywhere but in my head, but I'm dying for a Pretty Woman fic and I really did think I had a taker on that (hint, hint - you know who you are), but alas, her muse went off to greener pastures and I'm stuck with more questions. What happens to Vivian and Edward at the end? Do they live happily ever after? Does Edward get over his fear of heights? Does Vivian become a corporate raider? Dang it, inquiring minds need to know. Also, "LA Law" fic - I just mentioned the "Venus Butterfly" on a mailing list and that got my thoughts running about Michael and Grace - my very first 'ship. But darn it, there's just no "LA Law" fic out there.

Music I'm Listening To: Sarah Brightman's La Luna, Enya's The Memory of Trees and yes, Tori Amos' Little Earthquakes. I did have an Evita and Miss Saigon moment last week, but it's impossible for me to get through the last few minutes of Miss Saigon without completely bawling.

Most Amazing Site I'd Like to Completely Read One Day: Welcome to the Gossamer project which has practically every "X-Files" story ever written in it. Amazing work and I think it's updated nearly daily. Wow.

Site I Have Completely Read in One Day: Kelly's Janeway Fiction. There is something so incredibly addictive about Kelly's fic. I really was just going there to reread one story, "Courses," and I ended up reading nearly everything there. "Visitor" is my favorite and "Stimulation" is beyond words to adequately describe. BTW, "Stimulation" ended up on two of the lists of zendom members' Top Five Fanfics of All Time (yes, I was one of them).

Things I Should Be Doing Instead of Blogging: Research Rupert Murdoch (the man owns everything) and write about him. Review investment accounting because I'm so bad at it, take a look at the currency LP, write a paper on the SEC's new position on earnings and what ought to be revealed, and eat dinner. Not necessarily in that order.

Wednesday, November 14, 2001

Site rec: The Microsoft Lexicon. I especially like "I don't have the bandwidth to deal with this" (I know who I'd love to say that to - only problem is he wouldn't get it!) and "Bloatware" (Microsoft? Nah, never). Also there are such classics like "undocumented features" (oh boy, do I know about these), "gronk" (um, yeah), "ping" (hey, I do that!), and "reality distortion field" (in other words, my life). I'm such geek.

blogger did something bizarre with yesterday's post. It should have read "Happy Diwali. So, happy Diwali! (Technically, four days of celebration means I'm not late with this).

Site Rec 2: Not that google needs help from me or anything because they are cooler than sliced bread, but I have to give props to a site that changes its logo in honor of the birthday of one of my favorite painters: Claude Monet.

Monday, November 12, 2001

On a lighter note...

Jemima has reviewed a classic fan work, namely The Eye of Argon. This was a challenge from the members of Zendom and Jemima rose to the occasion very well. If you haven't read "The Eye of Argon," well, some things have to be read to be believed.
Dysfunction has set in again. One minute, I was watching Katie Couric interview the adorable actor who plays Harry Potter in the upcoming movie and the next moment, the shot of Queens comes up, with billowing smoke in the distance. Another plane has crashed. And honestly, I just sat there riveted for about fifteen minutes, wondering when they were going to say something else had happened. I emailed Bryan instantly, because he lives in Queens, and I don't know how close Rockaway is to Bayside, but still, the concern is very much there. I also had to change my plans for the day. I had planned to work from home in the morning, go to class and then head into the office for the afternoon, but then within 15 minutes, I decided to go into work in the morning and then work from home in the afternoon when more details would be known and I wouldn't feel the need to watch every single second as it unfolded. However, it's amazing how raw the events of September 11 still are and I'm almost ashamed to say that as I drove here, I was absolutely terrified. So much for bravado, so much for getting on a plane, so much for anthrax - for the first time, I was truly terrified. Only time will tell what the situation truly is, but that's another 255 lives and who knows how many people on the ground, given that it crashed in a heavily residential area? At any rate, I'm hoping to hear from Bryan very soon.
My review of the latest ENT ep, "Breaking the Ice" is below. I can't review the "X-Files" unfortunately as my VCR cut out before the end (just when things were getting good), but I'll gather my thoughts together on that after I see part II.

Breaking the Ice

In a character-by-character run through:

* Archer - we see two sides of Archer in this ep. First, he is genuinely interested
in the Fourth Grade class - he takes time to answer questions carefully and in a
warm tone. Nicely done. However, that irrational dislike of Vulcans - boy, he
really doesn't like them, which begs to ask the question, why would he ask
T'Pol to stay on Enterprise anyway? I think it goes with the territory that
captains can be headstrong, but the climax of this ep - ie saving Reed &
Mayweather - well, that was a little too headstrong and prideful, so there is a
flaw in our captain's armour.

* T'Pol - this is the first time we get a sense of T'Pol as something *other*
than Vulcan. She is genuinely hurt when Tucker reads her private email. It's a
given that T'Pol would value her privacy, but she transcends that by reaching
out when she truly does need advice. It gives credance to the fact that T'Pol
isn't really a cold fish, but someone who is out of water - she needs to feel
comfortable and Trip's apology is probably the first time someone has made
any kind of overture to her. Think of Trip's comments that he had never seen
her quarters before - you get the feeling that T'Pol stays to herself because
she knows that the crew, Archer included, doesn't like her. So a good way to
soften out T'Pol's edges.

* Trip> - Ah, Trip. He's so adorable, no matter what he does. He feels genuinely
upset when he discovers that T'Pol's mail was actually of a personal nature.
He's also shy in some ways - he'd rather talk about warp coils than 'poop
questions.' He's definitely not a natural in front of the camera, so to speak, as
evidenced by his comments to the Fourth Grade class. But his scenes with T'Pol
were genuine - he did care and he wanted to help. Nice element to his
character. Though I *still* can barely hear that southern accent (though I have
a theory on why I can't hear it).

* Reed and Mayweather - look for these two to be the buddies on ENT. On
DS9, we had O'Brien and Bashir, VOY it was Tom and Harry and on TNG it was
Geordi and Data. So voila, Reed and Mayweather. These two exemplify
exploration - they want to be out there, they want to be doing stuff, they are
not afraid, unlike others on ENT. They also have a sense of fun - they are not
by any means straight-laced boring officers. (I sense much slash fic in our
future with these two). We still don't know much about their histories, but we
did learn a little more about their personalities in this ep.

* Sato - once again, not much there for this ensign. However, she did have a
nice moment in front of the camera with the fourth grade class. Her teaching
background seemed to come out, as she explained her job very seriously, but
not condescendingly. She also had the job to unencrypt (is that word?) T'Pol's
message, but refused to read it, given us the idea that Sato has a level of
consideration for T'Pol that other crewmembers may not necessarily have.

* Dr. Phlox - He is overly... over the top. It's almost like the galaxy is a brand
new petrie dish for him. So nothing new here for this mysterious doctor, other
then the fact that it's been re-enforced that he's from Denoblian (?) galaxy.

So in terms of character, pretty strong.

'Shipper Watch:

Trip/T'Pol - woohoo! Now there is some serious 'shippyiness there. These two
seem to relate on some level, and Trip in some ways reminds me of Tom
Paris, except more genuine (I'm talking first season Tom, not later reformed
Tom ). T'Pol is a little Seven-like in her cadence and movements, but
given her development this ep, I bet we get less of an ice princess attitude as
time goes on. And don't you think Trip is the perfect one to melt that icy

My questions:

What did Vanick have to do with anything? What did he say at the end of the
episode to T'Pol?

Why did T'Pol change her mind about the engagement, even after she had
argued with Trip about it?

Why *are* the Vulcans following the humans around?

Why is Archer so irrational to the point that he almost sacrificed two lives? Is
there something we need to know?

Sunday, November 11, 2001

The tell-tale pain in my arm is settling in again. I guess that's what you get when you attempt to respond to all of your email in one day. At any rate, I guess it's a pretty good indication I should call it a night (or an afternoon...)
One fanfiction genre I'm not completely sure of: Music groups. There are no less than 7645 fics about *NSync, 3047 fics about the Backstreet Boys, 353 about Britney Spears, Tori Amos merits 12, and even Rage Against the Machine has 3 fics, not to mention the occasional cross-over fic when two bands end up in the same fic. Even the boy band - the one that started it all - from my youth, NKOTB (New Kids on the Block), have their own fic category. Reminds me of a genre of "X-Files" fic which has David Duchovney dumping Tea Leoni so he and Gillian Anderson can run off together - that adds an entirely new dimension to 'shipper fic, I have to say.
The local NBC affiliate boasts that it is the only station with a weatherman who has a PhD in forensics earth science. I guess this means that if someone kills a tree, this guy can figure out what happened.

Saturday, November 10, 2001

Someone on the P/T Collective brought up personal theme songs. I don't think I could just have *one* song, but I've finally settled on an album of songs - specifically, Tori Amos' Little Earthquakes.. This is one album that has never ceased to move me (or the angst bunny for that matter) and some of the songs really mean something to me, such as China, Girl (which lately has been as close to a personal anthem as I can get), Silent All These Years, and Winter. So yes, I am cheating. But if I had to pick one song from these, it would probably be Silent All These Years.

Friday, November 09, 2001


Someone has gone and deleted Perfection, the C/7 fanfic index. The index was created in a way that anyone could update the site and add their comments without having to worry about FTP or HTML. And it was very, very cool - but apparently, someone has taken advantage of the 'openness' of wiki and used it against the group. The list moms are working to get the site back up, but it's still infuriating and I feel bad for them. Someone out there evidently has too much time on their hands.

This incident reminds me of the way the DS9 fandom used to be segregated back when I first started writing - W/Ders versus J/Jers, and trust me, it wasn't pretty. In fact, the flame wars were legendary - with rude messages being left in guestbooks and on message boards. I thought it was immature back then, and it's immature now. Okay, fine, you don't like *insert pairing here* but is it really necessary to hack up a website? To leave rude messages in guestbooks? To me, it seems like a waste of energy. Think about how that time could be spent instead - how about writing fic about *your* favorite pairing? Frankly, if I don't like a pairing, I avoid it. No need to spend precious bandwith or online time flaming authors or webmasters.

The last flame war between W/Ders and J/Jers led to the creation of the antiflame petition, which I host on the WDFA. As far as I know, this antiflame petition has kept JEWEL fairly honest and what's more interesting, we have a couple J/Jers who have 'signed' also. Unfortunately, not many people have expressed interest in signing after the initial draft was published and voted on by JEWEL. So, if you're interested in making cyberland a happier place to be, let me know.

Thursday, November 08, 2001

I've added my Gladiator fic and my one X-Files fic to the site.
Woohoo! After many nailbiting hours (okay, four), I learned this morning that yes, I have been accepted at EDHEC- France, one of the top European business schools for next summer. Whew! Not only that, I was pleasantly surprised to receive a scholarship as well. I'm so psyched. I always regretted not going abroad during my undergrad years, especially since I love to travel, and now, I get the chance to spend the summer in Nice and Lille. Life really doesn't get better than this, does it?
Well, I finally stumbled in at 12:30 last night. The whole project looks dubious, but we think we explained (ah the beauty of language - semantics are wonderful) it and hopefully, there are enough numbers there that these few arbitrary ones - boy, were we arbitrary towards the end - hopefully will slip by without much scrutiny.

Don't try this at home, kids - this is definitely the thing that will land you in hot water with the SEC, not to mention the possibility of prison time (though we're convinced that half of our class will end up in jail for white collar crimes as it is - as my teammate said, we'll have a lot of visiting to do after graduation. Yeah, consider that MBA humor). At any rate, we still believe the Cadbury has a lot of explaining to do and their shareholders probably should take a closer look at those statements - talk about voodoo (if anyone can figure out where the $713 group operating profit on their statement of loss and profit comes from and how it relates to the cash flow, drop me a a line. Where those numbers come from, where they go - boy, the SEC could have fun with these guys. However, it's safe to say at this point, none of us will ever be employed as financial analysts in the future.

Well, that's half of a project down, 4 more to go. I think sleep, at this point, is an unnecessary luxury. I suggested that I stop paying rent and move into the computer lab and one of the 2nd years said he had heard rumors of someone who had done that once. One benefit? Internet access all of the time - talk about feeding the addiction.

BTW, "Fall of Shadows I" is up now at VVS8/a>.

Wednesday, November 07, 2001

11:15 pm.
It's 10:48 pm and do you know where you are?

The night is still young. Most of it has been spent battling Cadbury Schweppes' financial statements, but thanks to a little plug category called "Other Financing Activities" in the cash flow statement (don't ask - my teammate has dubbed this category 'Seema's Nondisclosure information', but hey, it works!). It's one of those deals where if your balance sheet is off, then your income statement goes bezerk, and then the cash flow is completely off kilter. And then if you even *think* about adjusting the balance sheetl, then it's all over for the cash flow and you have to start all over again. Hence, the plug was necessary. Thanks to this rather dubious new category, I think there might be an end in sight. As soon as we come up with an approriate explanation for "Other Financing Activities." We won't even talk about the rather sketchy accumulated depreciation numbers and the hideously low interest expense. There is definitely something fishy about the way Cadbury Schweppes operates - we didn't have this problem with Hershey's or Rocky Mountain Chocolate (yes, we're analyzing the confectionary industry). So many numbers, so little time... we're hoping the prof won't notice.

Between this chocolate project and the McDonalds' case project we presented last week... it's fattening just thinking about it.

It's now 10:53 pm. No, I don't think I'm going home anytime soon.

Tuesday, November 06, 2001

Here's the official summary information for "Fall of Shadows": The crew is left helpless as families are divided, while the Equinox crew and Captain Janeway are brought to trial. Like I mentioned before, Part I airs tomorrow at VVS8 and Part II will air the following week.
Last change, I think. This one, I like.

Monday, November 05, 2001

Someone ended up here using a search for "T'Pol" and "Jolene Blalock." I bet they were disappointed.
Retrospect got reviewed. I was hoping no one picked up on the title issue, but there you have it... some people are sharper than I am, I might as well admit it, and by the time I realized the snafu, it was too late. And the fault is mine, not the producers, as I selected the title - I should have gone with my original alternative titles, either "Other Echoes" or "Shades of Gray." *sigh*

At any rate, my next episode, "The Fall of Shadows," will air this week and next week. Consider this my most ambitious story since Lines in the Sand, and equally energy-sapping. Since finishing my second draft last week, I have been unable to do anything but edit existing work, some of which has been sitting on my hard drive since May. I do have to get my act together and make some last minute edits to "Fall of Shadows," but it's mostly completed at this time, which is a relief, as for the longest time, this ep was an albatross around my neck.

At any rate, "Fall of Shadows" will make very little sense if Zeke's "Rise and Fall" is not read first and "Fall of Shadows" will also make very little sense if not followed up with the last story in this arc, Jeffrey Harlan's "Jurisprudence," not to mention that I've added a few details necessary for later follow-up, which may seem out of place. At any rate, I hope you enjoy. Me, I'm going to sit back with a margarita or two and take a break.

Sunday, November 04, 2001

I'm watching The American President, and it's very disconcerting that Michael Douglas is the president and Martin Sheen is not - Martin plays the Chief of Staff, but anyway, it's very strange, because Martin Sheen looks just as presidential as Michael Douglas, if not more presidential. Very, very strange. I keep thinking I'm in a strange episode of "The West Wing." At any rate, this is a very cute movie with some great lines in it. Consider this a rec. I might have to add it to my Top Ten movie list.

Thursday, November 01, 2001

How's that again?

Actual conversation from Managerial Architecture & Organizational Economics this morning:

Professor: The European Union's new structure is becoming increasingly interdependent.
Student: Just like they were years ago.
Professor: Are you talking recently?
Student: No.
Professor: Well, Europe used to be made up of kingdoms and I don't see that they were necessarily interdependent.
Student: I was thinking about during the Roman Empire, actually.

And now that I think about it, yes, I can see that the Roman Empire actually had an M-shaped organizational architecture - with its multinational and geographic divisions, not to mention decentralized decision making rights.

In this same class, a few of our international students got into a argument about whether the Germans liked the Dutch or not; one student was especially insistent than the Germans did not like the Dutch, however the German in our class vehemently disagreed with this statement. I was amused.

I've also realized that our cohort is filled with some fine criminal minds - as evidenced by this conversation in Financial Accounting:

Student: Actually, I buy and sell houses and accelerate the depreciation on them for tax purposes.
Professor: Uh...
Student: It works. Saves on taxes.
Professor: I wouldn't do that. No, otherwise you'd be wearing stripes.
Student: I don't do it. I hired someone else to do it for me.

Trust me: this was the most mild of schemes to manipulate the books today. I was quite frankly impressed by the ingenuity of my classmates.
New look. Yes, I know, but the other one was too dark and the style sheets and Netscape were not getting along. Hopefully this will be better.
I have a strange, strange desire to write songfic. Here is the song which has inspired me.