nineveh_uk: Photo of Rondvassbu in winter (rondvassbu)
Two years ago I posted a clip of a bloke in a predominently white suit beginning the clip in 5th place and going on to win the race a minute later. I can't quite manage that this time round, but I can do a bloke in a white suit entering the clip in 6th place and going to to get fourth, 2.9 seconds of the leader, which is pretty bloody impressive when you're British and the sport is cross-country skiing. Although the Norwegian press swiftly labelled him, only part-sarcastically, as the best Norwegian since he trains there, has a Norwegian club, and is studying at the Univeristy of Trondheim, and pointed out that he beat all the Swedes, too. So congratulations to Andrew Musgrave. The Nordic Ski World Championships greatly cheered my post-holiday week, alas only two weekends left and then I'll have to find something else to iron to.

nineveh_uk: Illustration that looks like Harriet Vane (Harriet)
Few things strike terror and fury into my theatre-going heart like the words "In a new version by [...]" on the website/review/flyer of a a play not originally written in English. New translations, great! Don't use the one from 1905. But new versions? I want to see Ibsen, not someone else's supposedly more exiting text.* I suppose on the plus side, that's one less trip to London that I have to make or feel bad about not making.** Maybe next time someone decides to be exciting and original with Ibsen they could just put it on in Norwegian with subtitles.

* Though I would definitely have gone to that Swedish version of Hamlet in which he's a murderer, I speak as a person who has had ample opportunity to see Hamlet.

** If it were cheap and local, I might try it out anyway. But when it involves the train, extra cost, and a late night, nope.
nineveh_uk: Illustration that looks like Harriet Vane (Harriet)
The test pancake is surely one of life's saddest foods.
nineveh_uk: Photo of Rondvassbu in winter (rondvassbu)
I am home from my skiing holiday, and lo! it was good. The aforementioned course was brilliant. While I would not proclaim myself a champion skater, I was respectable and it was a lot of fun. I'll definitely be doing more of it in future. Also bonus language practice thanks to the tiny group of two German speakers and two English speakers* each of whom knew the other language a bit, but not sufficiently to make either one dominate conversation*. The Alps were spiky and impressive even when the föhn was blasting a hair-dryer at the snow**, and a glass of wine with dinner less than a third of the price of Norway. It was all very easy and restful and I didn't have a cold during it (or, so far, after) for the first time in years.*** I expect next year to revert to where my heart lies, in the high white wilderness of the Norwegian fells, or at least Finland, but for this year the logistically easy and more populous version with shops was definitely what I needed. I managed just enough fitness to make the most of it, though at times it felt very noticeable to me that I had a veneer of energy laid over a pit of absence. But much as ice starts on the top of the water rather than the bottom, the veneer can in time be built into the real thing.

Back to work tomorrow! I feel simultaneously refreshed and reinvigorated for it and terrified of my inbox.

* The coach was Swedish and explained everything twice.

** Except the day it rained. I did my course in the morning, a diligent 3km of practice afterwards, and then went to the 'sauna world' to get rather more pleasantly drenched and hang around in a heated pool outdoors in the rain.

*** I have now not had a cold for about 5-6 weeks. This is amazing, maybe I've finally run out of new ones.
nineveh_uk: Photo of Rondvassbu in winter (rondvassbu)
I have decided to give structure to my forthcoming holiday by booking myself a course of three mornings of group lessons in cross-country skiing skate technique at the extremely well-regarded school in Seefeld, where I shall be next week.

I am not entirely sure whether this is a brilliant idea that will teach me exciting new skills and be enormous fun, or whether I am completely out of my mind. I am definitely not ideally fit for it, but since at the moment my max distance skating is about 15m, I expect to fall over from technique fail long before my lungs/shoulders/legs give out. We shall see.

Naturally, I have not yet packed.
nineveh_uk: Illustration that looks like Harriet Vane (Harriet)
More Yuri!!! on Ice fic.

Round and Golden by Nineveh_uk
Chapters: 1
Fandom: Yuri!!! on Ice
Rating: M, CNTW
Relationships: Chris/Victor
Characters: Yakov Feltsman, Victor Nikiforov, Christophe Giacometti

Summary: Victor has won gold at the Turin Olympics, and Yakov should be enjoying a well-earned rest. At least, he would be if Victor and Chris hadn't decided to put Victor's gold medal to some creative use...

A substantial portion of the blame for this fic lies with [personal profile] naraht for egging me on. Also, a bunch of students years ago who decided that what their art show catalogue cover really needed was creative use of ring doughnuts and caused me a busy morning at work.
nineveh_uk: Illustration that looks like Harriet Vane (Harriet)
I thought that I had already ticked the "stupid thing of the week" box when on Sunday I walked downstairs with damp feet, no slippers, not paying attention, and feel. During the next second or so, time slowed down to give me ample leisure to reflect on my stupidity. Fortunately it also gave me time to grab the bannister and lift my head, so while I have a sore arm and shoulder and am bruised across two bits of back, neither of them is my tailbone, victim of the stair incident you'd think would have taught me better, and I didn't then bounce the rest of the way to the bottom. My dignity is harmed, but not my forthcoming skiing trip. Though I might pick up some pre-emptive diclofenac from the GP because I'm definitely going to fall down again while I'm there. Annoyingly, the visible bruises are not very impressive.

Anyway, that is the only the second stupidest thing I have done this week, and it's only Tuesday. Far, far worse is that I saw a new chapter of a fic was up and I clicked on it, and now I want to read it and know what happens, but I still have a chapter and a half that was already posted to go that I have skimmed, but not read properly (it is in German. Reading properly takes me a long time). And of course I clicked to an early bit and argh, now I need to know what happens next BUT I WILL BE STRONG!

Stop being productive, author! You were supposed to wait a week until I was on holiday and had more time.
nineveh_uk: Illustration that looks like Harriet Vane (Harriet)
Finally! Something crossed off the WIP list.

In the Studio
Chapters: 4/4
Fandom: Yuri on Ice
Rating: T, CNTW
Summary: The crowd in the stadium only had to scream their enthusiasm, the poor commentators in the TV studio had to try and make sense of what they were seeing... Finally it's the Grand Prix Final Free Skate!

*

Next up, either the Turin incident or, and I never believed I would write these words and yet here I am, the sex pollen fic.
nineveh_uk: Illustration that looks like Harriet Vane (Harriet)
Somewhat belatedly mentioning, I have finished Envious Casca. I enjoyed it. I got whodunnit, on account of having come across something related in another book (strictly speaking, having seen it on a televised version), so I knew that something was iffy. What I didn't get was how the murder in the locked-room mystery had been done. Which was, for circumstances I am about to relate, really stupid of me.

Spoilers for the murder method and clues... )
nineveh_uk: Picture of fabric with a peacock feather print. (peacock)
If there is one thing that the EU ought to have done and has failed to do, it is to standardise the labelling on women's clothing. I don't care which system we adopt, but when 38, 40, 42 are the same size** depending which country of various adjacent countries you are in, it is unhelpful.

Which is to say that the mail order clothing from this post has arrived. Alas, though the ski jacket is a very acceptable shade of pinky lilac, I gambled on the sizing because they didn't have mine and it is far too small. I knew that was a risk, because they didn't have my best guess as to my size, but it is so small that it might be that they did have my size, it's just that my assumption the Czech Republic uses German sizing rather than French was wrong. However I suspect that two sizes up will be far too big around the ribs (for some reason ski jackets always are. Come on, amateurs are not built like Olympians), so I may not bother trying again. Annoyingly the retailer has some gorgeous Halti jackets and I know what size I am in those because I borrowed my sister's, but if I ordered one it wouldn't arrive until I was actually on holiday. So I think that I might leave it for now and see if there are any sales when I get there.

Naturally, after the above, the Norwegian thermals I bought in the same order put the "long" into "long underwear", and I am going to need to chop 1.5 inches off the legs and fold back the wrist cuffs a bit. But I am keeping them because they are otherwise excellent and the only ones I've seen that have wool on the outside and polyester on the inside, so they should manage to be warm and not smelly and not itchy. The latter can never be guaranteed, but fingers crossed.

WIP meme

Jan. 28th, 2017 10:35 am
nineveh_uk: Illustration that looks like Harriet Vane (Harriet)
I am taking the keywords in this to be 'in progress'. An idea in my head or notes jotted down, or even several pages of scenes, does not count for the purpose; this is basically the top of the pile that are most likely to be finished/actively worked on any time soon.

Corsica This is the untitled Wimsey/Harry Potter crossover fic about to have the mpreg ruthlessly cut, currently standing at c.85,000 words. It is not in fact going to be finished any time soon because there is still a lot to go, but I really, really want to finish this, and I really, really ought to make a push to finish this. I know where it's going, who the murderer is (because it is Wimsey/HP crossover crack-turned-casefic), I even know the final scene. I just have to write it all... I have no idea how much longer it will be, but I think it is unlikely to come in at less than another 20,000 words of plot, plus going back and taking out the mpreg and dealing with the narrative ramifications of that.

The Whispering Grass Non-crack, non-crossover, a take on a familiar fic scenario for Tanz der Vampire, i.e. how the Count came to accidentally murder his wife in a scenario that is basically Fields of Gold: the sick version. So classic angst-fic, really. I've got notes for pretty much the whole thing, I just have to write it up... This might be a recurring theme.

In the Studio. Yuri on Ice as observed by figure skating commentators. Three chapters posted, just one to go. I'm going to attempt to finish it this weekend; it shouldn't take long, just needs discipline and to re-watch episodes 11 and 12.

Round and Golden. Yakov-centric account of the unfortunate incident in Turin when Victor and Chris were teenagers. Another one for which I rapidly jotted down notes of the whole thing, but haven't moved on to doing the complete version. But it shouldn't take too long to finish.

Rostelecom hotel room. Untitled fic as to how Victor manoeuvres Yuuri into sharing a hotel room in Moscow and what happens when they get there. Half-written, know what's happening in the second half, just haven't bloody written it.

The Immovable Object In which Miles Vorkosigan meets the only power that might be able to stop him: the Vorkosiverse equivalent of the UKBA. The fact that the Vorkosiverse equivalent of the UKBA are the good guys in this story might give you indication as to how I feel about the narrative attitude some facets of Miles' character in the later books. And now all together - lots of notes, know where it's going, need to write up the remaining 80%...
And now time to get on with the day so I can do some of it!
nineveh_uk: Photo of Rondvassbu in winter (rondvassbu)
Many years ago, I read Tim Moore's account of cycling on Iceland, Frost on my Moustache. Other than it being gently amusing, I remember only two things from this book. The first being the dirty joke that gave him the title, the second one of the most useful pieces of advice in my adult life.

Anyone who was bought outdoor walking or other sports or exercise gear in the last few decades will know about 'layering'. Base layer - optional mid-layer - outer layer. It is the gospel upon which the well-dressed hiker's comfort is built. But almost all resources on this subject omit a really crucial piece of information about how to make the layering system work: that your base layer, i.e. your long underwear that clings mercilessly to your body, must be something that you are willing to wear, on its own in a public place with people looking at you. Because if it isn't then you can't make the layering system work.

Moore illustrated this with a vivid descripion of the cycling undergarment he had purchased, which he likened to an Edwardian fetish costume,* and the horrendous experience of trying to get out of it. I simply stood in Marks and Spencers and contemplated the black sports long underwear, and the otherwise identical white, and considered which I'd rather be wearing when I had to strip off my fleece. I bought the black.

And in short, that is why, 14 years later and thinking that maybe I am allowed a new set of sports long underwear and will go for an extra-warm set, I have once again bought the black. Admittedly the insulated downhill ski jacket I've just bought is in women's mountain purple, which I object to on principle because so much stuff is made in it, and also because it really suits me and I would like to be able to choose it, and not just have it because it is the Girls' Version, but because it is nice and also because outer layers should be colours that search and rescue can spot.**

TL:DR I blame the patriarchy for making me dislike pink. Also, I don't care how warm merino thermals are, I do not find them non-itch.

*Having years later seen a man walking up Vulcano in a cycling undergarment, I can only say that (a) Moore was right, and (b) I'm never going to forget that sight.

**Admittedly it is highly unlikely that search and rescue will need to, but you never know. Even so, my cross-country jacket is ivory, because the alternative was fuchsia pink, and I just couldn't.
nineveh_uk: Illustration that looks like Harriet Vane (Harriet)
When fandom fails to deliver, sometimes there's no option but to do it yourself. So here's the Elisabeth das Musical*/Discworld Death crossover that apparently no-one else felt the need for.

Beyond the Veil
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Elisabeth - Levay/Kunze, Discworld
Rating: General Audiences, CNTW
Summary: The Empress Elisabeth was dead and Death had come to claim her. But he wasn't quite the anthropomorphic personification that she had been expecting.

For those not familiar with the musical the other Death looks more or less like this. The major costume constant between different productions appears to be copious eyeliner.

*Another musical that has inexplicably failed to make it to the London stage.
nineveh_uk: photo of lava (volcano)
It appears that a TV production of Good Omens is finally happening! On the upside, the BBC is co-producing it. On the downside, so it Amazon. On the really big downside, it's going to be on the BBC after it is on Amazon. Oh well, I suppose on the plus side if I hold out against Amazon, I'll avoid the fandom wanking.

Meanwhile in news of hell freezing over, Djokavik is out in the second round of the Australian Open. Good news for Murray! Even better news for Uzbekistan wild card Denis Istomin.

Sing La!

Jan. 16th, 2017 12:42 pm
nineveh_uk: Illustration that looks like Harriet Vane (Harriet)
Guess who's going to Hamilton next year :-)
nineveh_uk: photo of lava (volcano)
I posted in the summer about the terrific performance of Opera North's Götterdämmerung that I went to see. Now I can see the rest of them, as can you, because BBC4 is broadcasting Das Rheingold on the evening of 12 February, and then the rest online. See here for a trailer.

In case this semi-staged concert performance, or the auditorium of Leeds Town Hall* is too visually exciting for you, fear not!

In addition to the four complete films of the Ring operas, Opera North will also release a full Ring cycle ‘conductor-cam’ online. This sixteen-hour film is made up of a single shot of Richard Farnes conducting the entire cycle, one of the longest and most complex pieces of music ever written, which places incredible demands on its conductor.

The whole thing will also be available to viewers outside the UK.

Have the trailer:


*It is pretty special. I was in a couple of the LEA's children's music concerts, and spent the bits counting rests etc.** gawping at the faux marble pillars that look like giant bruised legs and reading the inscriptions round the top. Except the Lord keep the city, the watchman waketh bvt in vain. Now there's a line that would cheese of Captain Vimes.

**Clarinet...
nineveh_uk: Cover illustration for "Strong Poison" in pulp fiction style with vampish Harriet. (Strong Poison)
My fandom year ended annoyingly as the new year's eve performance of Five Guys Named Moe I was supposed to go to was cancelled due to cast illness (possibly the stinking cold going round that has deprived me of most of my voice). But the year ended, a new one has begun, and as I am supposed to be packing to get the train home tomorrow, I am allowing time for a meme instead.

Courtesy of [personal profile] naraht

1. Your main fandom of the year?

I think that this probably has to be Tanz der Vampire. Not because I've written loads in it (grand total: two fics) or am active in the online fandom, but because as a direct result of it I've started learning German again and went on holiday to see it, so in terms of personal commitment it definitely gets a lot of points.

2. Your favourite film watched this year?

*Attempts to think which films I've seen this year* I'm really not sure. Perhaps When Marnie Was There. Not because it was the best film I've seen this year (I'm assuming they were also supposed to be in the cinema), because Carol, Rams, and The Wind Rises were all better. But it was an excellent film that introduced me to a new genre, was gripping all the way through, and portrayed the travails of childhood done with much sensitivity and skill.

3. Your favourite book read this year?

Oh dear, I'm not sure about this one, either. Not the first Elena Ferrante - it caught me in the wrong mood and I didn't finish it, though I shall certainly come back to it. I don't think I could really call it a favourite, but perhaps the book that has left the most lasting impression on me this year has been Stefan Zweig's autobiography The World of Yesterday, which felt at times appallingly topical. His description of the events leading up to the First World War, not as the thunderous hoofbeats of history, but as something that just sort of happens while being so bizarre a concept that it is impossible to believe it is actually going to happen. Zweig literally gets the last train back from Belgium (where he has been on a seaside holiday) to Germany and sees troops and trains massing at the border and even then he recounts still thinking/telling himself that it's obviously manoeuvres, because there's no way that Germany is going to invade Belgium. It's not the best-written book I've read this year, but it was fascinating. Even the several chapters of deeply-tedious fanboying of early C20 minor French and Belgian poets gain pathos later when one appreciates the degree to which Zweig is writing in exile, looking back to a different world that, for all its egregious faults, was not the world of World Wars and the Holocaust.

4. Your favourite TV show of the year?

Oh dear, this probably has to be Yuri on Ice. Fun as Deutschland 83, Trapped and The Night Manager were, enchanting as Planet Earth II inevitably was, YOI was a delightful accompaniment to a rather trying autumn and something to look forward to amidst the global and domestic politics and perpetual nose-blowing/sniffing/48 hour flu etc.

5. Your favourite online fandom community of the year?

I have certainly spent too much time on FFA.

6. Your best new fandom discovery of the year?

Quite how many hits/kudos it is possible to get through production of a timely fic in a larger fandom. I shall not be switching all my fic production to hunt-the-kudos, but it is a nice change on occasion.

7. Your biggest fandom disappointment of the year?

(1) Me. Definitely not enough writing, the giant Wimsey/HP crossover made some progress but still isn't finished (and I've realised that I think I'm going to do a major edit of one aspect of it, kill your darlings argh), and I had lots of ideas for various things and just haven't got to more than rough notes of it. It's basically a question of time and energy (and German), but very annoying.

(2) Therese Johaug (Norwegian cross-country skier) failed a doping test and is currently suspended pending the formal outcome. I veer between thinking that her account is plausible as someone having an ill-timed but understandable in the circumstances moment of carelessness over medication that clearly brought no performance benefit, and that that is exactly the sort of story that you'd come up with if you were in fact doping and that maybe there's a reason for that extra sprint prowess last year.
I'm a lot less disappointed with the ongoing revelations about some of the Russians because I've had suspicions for longer, not least because of their pattern of competition.

(skips a couple of questions, can't be bothered to re-number)

10. Your biggest squee moment of the year?

Without a doubt, going to see Tanz der Vampire live, which is a good thing considering I went to another country in order to do so. Absolutely enormous fun, surrounded by an audience of people also having enormous fun. With vampires.

Honourable mention for Yuri on Ice episode 10 . I laughed like a drain the entire episode and spent far too much time on the internet afterwards. It was hilarious, but also really enjoyable to see a work really pull off a narrative switch on the audience like that. It's something far more creators attempt than succeed at.

11. The most missed of your old fandoms?
Definitely the moment at which I realised that yes, I really, really did want to go and see The Cursed Child once it was on stage and tickets were unobtainable. I had assumed beforehand that I wouldn't be that fussed, that I'd wait and see how it was reviewed etc. etc. It was a mistake.

12. The fandom you haven’t tried yet, but want to?

My first interest isn't fandom, it's canons. If there turns out to be a fandom that I enjoy that's great. There are plenty of things I have enjoyed reading or watching in which I have very little fannish interest at all, such as Tolkien.

The series of the year I haven't watched appears to be the third series of Norwegian Skam, and I plan to catch up with the lot in 2017. However the English-language fandom (tumblr) sounds awful, and I'm both too late for the Norwegian one and don't have good enough (i.e. any) written Norwegian to participate. Also, world enough and time...

13. Your biggest fan anticipations for the New Year?

Can Andrew Musgrave make the top 10 in the Tour de Ski? (Dubious. Top 15, OTOH, possible and would be nice to see.)

DOING MORE WRITING MYSELF and making an attempt to finish the eternal Wimsey crossover WIP. I will conquer, I swear!
nineveh_uk: Illustration that looks like Harriet Vane (Harriet)
The public toilets at Edinburgh railway station provide hair straighteners...
nineveh_uk: picture of holly in snow (holly)
Here I am in the bosom of my family (TM), which is very enjoyable and not really giving me any time for writing or relaxing with a book. My plans for a couple of Yuletide treats remain unfulfilled. But it is fun even though the weather isn't. Today involves the preparation of vegetables plus the Boxing Day ham, a walk during the dry bit in order to get outside, last bits and pieces, and early dinner at an Italian restaurant in order to give my young nephews something else to be hyper about. I am giving them foam swords; in my defence, their parents asked for them. Kids' fake swords these days are amazing, I have been going around the place striking ninja poses.

Anyway, it's Christmas Eve so time for some carols, which I've been listening to while wrapping presents. O Holy Night is a classic example of something that is good in the original (have Roberto Alagna) and got translated into Victorian twee English that carefully erases any political statement, but even in English it has an excellent tune. Oh yes, and it also needs singing by someone competent.

Enter, obviously, Jussi Björling. Really, no-one does it better:



Not quite as stupendously sung, but a lot of fun, is the HP Lovecraft filk version, Unholy Night:



Best of all, the scene from Frasier, in which Martin Crane attempts to sing it:



I am summoned to the parsnips and it has started to rain again. At some point I must dash to Morrison's, but clearly not yet.
nineveh_uk: Photo of Rondvassbu in winter (rondvassbu)
I have committed further Yuri on Ice fic. Sorry, normal service will be resumed, I promised, and in the meantime there will be no soulmates AU.*

(1) A second chapter for In the Studio, with TV commentators Megan and John (and a techs chorus) at the Grand Prix Final.

(2) Yakov POV with teenage Victor A Coach's Lot. In which Yakov considers that part of his duties as a coach includes giving the professional equivalent of The Talk to young skaters heading off to international competition, in the hope that they won't do anything too stupid.**

*

I head north tomorrow for Christmas. Naturally I have not finished packing. When planning my break I did it with the intention of maximising the time spent with my family, and I'm really looking forward to that. At the same time, I think I probably ought to have given myself an extra day to sort myself out first, especially as I come back on the 2nd and am in the office on the 3rd. Still, I have nearly 6 hours on the train to relax...

* Famous last words.

** I want more Yakov fic. He's obviously very fond of Victor, does well by his skaters, and post-episode 10 his reasons for his immense cheesed-off-ness with Victor earlier in the series have become clear... Actually, I think what I want is comedy Yakov divorce fic, as witnessed by teenage Victor.

Profile

nineveh_uk: Picture of a wild rabbit with text "I hope your rabbit dies" (Default)
nineveh_uk

March 2017

S M T W T F S
   1234
5678 91011
1213 1415161718
19202122232425
262728293031 

Syndicate

RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags