[personal profile] kennahijja

Mar. 9th, 2013 11:59 am
fpb: (Athena of Pireus)
There may be three things, perhaps four, that we have ever agreed upon. There have been times when I have felt like shaking you. But if more people were like you the world would be a better place. HAPPY BIRTHDAY.
fpb: (Athena of Pireus)
Friends are among the most precious things we have, and I have let mine pass by much too often. My new year's day resolution is to treat my friends, near and far, better.

An example: this year I sent NO Christmas cards. To anyone. In spite of that, I got three lovely ones from friends of mine, including a long and sweet letter about my recent loss, which managed to say all the right things and hit every nail on the head. You people know who you are, and you are wonderful. Thank you for existing.
fpb: (Athena of Pireus)
I don't understand this. There is an American conservative I know who has considerable stores of intellectual honesty, learning and understanding. I like him and I appreciate debates with him, even when they get tetchy, because he understands what facts are and has a good store of them. But for some reason his LJ seems to draw the very dregs of conservatism. For the second time I have felt forced to defriend him, not because of anything he said or did, but because of the hideous crew to be met in his comments threads. To make a comparison, he is rather less extreme and arrogant than [livejournal.com profile] johncwright, but his comments threads are consistently less interesting, because his f-list is a roster of intellectual thugs who share neither his learning nor his decency - whereas [profile] johncwright seems to attract a reassuring amount of independent and argumentative minds. And that is what really stumps me. He is an upright person. Why can't he see that many of them are no better than online thugs? Does belonging to the same party necessarily have to blind you to the wrongs of others? I don't think so, but I can't see any other reason why some kinds of filth appear in the company of gentlemen.
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...and as he is one of the finest human beings I have the honour of knowing, I hope he has the best possible HAPPY BIRTHDAY and many wonderful years to follow.
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WHO is the utter and total sweetheart who sent me one of the best Silver Angel sketches anyone has ever made?
Photobucket

May you have the 2012 you deserve, [livejournal.com profile] ani_bester. In a lot of cases, this would be a curse; with you, it's a blessing.
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It's been too long since I've last heard from either one of you, but have two very happy birthdays anyway!

And a song from my parts, just because I like it - and because the singer shows why God gave us voices:
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Do any of my friends like cabbage? I've come up with rather a good recipe for Savoy cabbage and I'd like to dedicate it to someone.

EDITED IN: Sour and sweet Savoy cabbage Eliskimo

Separately, prepare a decent amount of mashed potatoes, on which you will eventually place the cabbage once cooked.

I used frozen cabbage. If you buy it fresh, get rid of the tough outer leaves and chop the rest small. Take one smallish apple, an onion, and a red or yellow pepper, and chop them fine. Place the onion, apple and pepper in a frying pan with some fat and fry them till the apple and pepper are softened and the onion coloured. Add the cabbage, salt, add half a teaspoonful of honey, some fennel seeds, paprika, and cinnamom, and cook together. When the liquid made by the vegetables has nearly evaporated, add some balsamic vinegar, and when that is also nearly dried, pour over the bed of mashed potatoes. Serve warm.
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Just invented by myself, and dedicated to [profile] sanscouronne, just because. The next time I think of something really nice, I'll dedicate it to another friend.

Ingredients: lettuce, currants, bacon, tinned tuna, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt.
Cook a few strips of bacon over a very slow fire; try to avoid altogether the frying effect, which will be easier if you have an electric hob. Take them out of the pan, get rid of the excess fat with some kitchen paper, and cut into small bits. Chop the salad and mix with currants, tuna and bacon (mix energetically, and mix again as you are about to serve the salad, because the currants tend to settle at the bottom of the dish.) Garnish with olive oil, balsamic vinegar and salt to taste.
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Yes, and it works. My friend [personal profile] ani_bester has come up with an absolutely delightful idea for satire/allegory which makes wonderful use of her charming, idiosyncratic art style and is frankly the most promising idea for a comic I have seen in years. Have a look - http://ani-bester.livejournal.com/851734.html - and follow her, I don't think you'll be sorry.
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[personal profile] haikujaguar, who is already responsible for one of the most stunning pieces on motherhood I have ever read (http://haikujaguar.livejournal.com/504867.html ), has now posted a Mother's day post from the viewpoint of the mother which goes beyond my praise. Go read it: http://haikujaguar.livejournal.com/791496.html . Just bloody well go and read it.
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Personally, I care little about privacy on the net, and even if I did, I think that mine is past praying for. However, a recent incident showed me, to my regret, that some people do and find it difficult or painful to be, for instance, exposed to correspondence from social contact sites.

If any of you feel like that, please let me know and I will take all necessary measures to protect your privacy.
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Just as I was about to get to sleep, I got a loathsome e-mail from an agency I had done a good bit of work for, which amounted to their wanting to pay me as late as possible ( and they are already six weeks late) and as little as possible. I answered back in suitable terms, with the twin threats of legal action and of making their behaviour public among other translators. At that point I was no longer feeling like sleep, so I went on Facebook. After posting a short snarl about what had just happened, I looked at recent entries, and I noticed that [profile] jamesenge had published a photo of a magnificent painting by Jeffrey Katherine Jones. Now don't ask me to explain Mr/Ms. Jones, I can't. One thing I can say: s/he is, and has been since about 1972, one of the greatest painters in the world - a Master in the full meaning of the term, and I think I have seen enough painting in my life to know the difference.

So ten minutes at most later I get a request for friending from Mr/Ms Jones.

This is not the first genius who has been a friend of mine. Denny Derbyshire and Kenna Hijja spring to mind. But it is the first living legend, someone whose work was already being reprinted and admired when I was a young fan hunting and pecking around Rome's newsstand together with Franco Urru.
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I just had a rather silly revelation.

A while ago, I asked my friend [profile] sanscouronne how she would see herself if she were to cast herself as a superhero or fantasy character. She chose "a Tolkien elf! Paradoxically old but young, whimsical, very perceptive, with sharp senses, able to flit about soundlessly, adept with a bow and arrow.." So - for the first time ever in forty-seven years - I found myself asking myself how I would cast myself. I came up with a beast-warrior - a fat, lumbering, fierce brown bear.

I wonder if any of you have any idea along these lines.
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I have been thinking about something [personal profile] inverarity said a few weeks back. It occurs to me that if I were to produce some sort of secret conspiracy to rule the world, in this day and age, there is a group that would be more credible than any other: young Asian ladies with university degrees. If you ever brought together [profile] tashmania, [personal profile] kikei, [profile] hermoinejean7, and [profile] cette_vie, you would definitely have enough brain-power and working capacity to take over the world with ease, not to mention enough charm to make the rest of us like it. They certainly would be a hundred times better than the present shower. Add [personal profile] dustthouart and [profile] expectare as honorary Easterners, and [personal profile] helixaspersa as honorary mistress of the world, period - she definitely has the brainpower, charm and hard work down pat, and I already promised once to cast her as a super-villain.

Merry Christmas, everyone, and have fun!
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A number of friends, including [livejournal.com profile] johncwright, [livejournal.com profile] eliskimo, [livejournal.com profile] shezan and [livejournal.com profile] notebuyer, have posted links to my last entry, and as a result a number of previously unknown (to me, of course) readers have visited my LJ. I am glad to have raised so much interest, but all the same I feel I have to deliver two warnings.

One. I myself do not identify as a conservative, much less as the American brand. To mention one thing that is very much in the news right now, I am fiercely in favour of what American conservatives call, never without a shudder of disgust, "socialized medicine". I oppose the death penalty except in wartime under martial law; and I favour limitations and public control over the use of guns. I regard big business as a huge, stupid feudal system, remote from the discipline of competition and naturally rapacious, a necessary evil at best. I regard regulation as a necessity for a civilized country. I say this as a warning, just in case some of us who agree with me on the matter of religious freedom and national identity may be disappointed when some of my other views take them by surprise. You are welcome to stay and lurk or friend me, as you please, but you have been warned.

Two. While I am pleased and proud with my country's reaction to unreasonable judicial tyranny and oppressive atheistic fanaticism, the last word is by no means said. There is always a weak sister somewhere, and as in too many cases, the weak sister is in government. It may surprise those of you who only know Mr.Berlusconi from the ugly and careless caricatures spread by the media, but one of his great weaknesses is an abiding need to be liked. From this comes his biggest weakness as a boss (otherwise he is brilliant in his field), a constant unwillingness to sack anyone; from this, too, his unwise dallyings with international villains such as Gheddafi and Putin. He has long shown that Catholic morality is not his forte, either, and I have no doubt that he would not think much of throwing his Catholic allies overboard if he felt it suited him. Already a bad signal has come from government: they are saying that they feel perfectly confident that they can get the sentence overturned by legal means. What they should have said is that the European Court had no right to rule in this area and that their sentence was going to be ignored. Their reaction shows a worrying desire to accept the picture of legality dictated by the court.

New Friends

Aug. 3rd, 2009 01:11 pm
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Coming back from an undesired and frankly sucky four-day absence from the internet (during which, however, I have started to rework my flat towards the shape I want it to have long term), I found that two people have friended me. This is highly surprising news, since one of them is apparently either an atheist or interested in it, and the other is a person with whom I had two or three vigorous online encounters. Well, at least I can hope that they know the worst. I hope I do not disappoint, that's all.
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I am nearly in tears of joy. A friend whom I had lost sight of for over ten years has got in touch over the Internet from Brazil. Considering how depressed I had been feeling over the passing of time and the loss of friends, this is just the pick-me-up I needed. And I was and remain so fond of this person that I occasionally called her "little sister". Thank you so very much, Adele "Del" Santos Pereira.

A good day

Feb. 8th, 2009 08:23 am
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I had a delightful afternoon out getting to know [personal profile] mentalguy and showing him around London - at least, some of the best known parts. He is an intelligent man and very good company. This is only the third time in four years that I get to meet real life LJ friends (hello, [profile] kagome_sama, [personal profile] chthonya, [personal profile] kennahijja), and each time it has been a great and unmixed pleasure. I wish it happened more often.
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...could one find a university student - a UNIVERSITY STUDENT - who, on being left a bottle full of vodka, would conclude that the best thing to do was pour it down the sink. Do you want to destroy every stereotype in existence, young woman? http://aphoenix2007.livejournal.com/176368.html?view=1005040

Oxford

Jul. 30th, 2008 03:15 pm
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So, last Friday and Saturday I went to Oxford. I would like to post a long elaborate essay on everything I did, but I have a feeling I would not manage to see the end of it. I visited places - especially in the Jericho/Walton Manor area - that I had not seen since I was eighteen and studying for my A-levels (and learning a much more important and painful lesson at the wholly unconscious and innocent hands of a girl called Kathy Sales). I spent the evening and night at the house of my old professor, now retired but still immensely active, discussing my research (on which he was encouraging) and my girth (on which he was legitimately concerned). And on Saturday I got to know both [personal profile] chthonya and [personal profile] kennahijja, who are two charming people. (In this kind of company, I always have a sneaking fear that I may be offensive or boring. I hope they had as good a time as they gave me.) We toured the centre of Oxford and visited the pub where CS Lewis and JRR Tolkien used to meet with a few other friends every Tuesday and discuss such trifles as Lewis' science-fiction trilogy and Tolkien's Hobbit and various mythological efforts. Well, [personal profile] kennahijja is indubitably a genius, [personal profile] chthonya is at the very least brilliant, and I hope I can hold up my end even in such company; so I dare say we were not so out of place in such historical surroundings as we might sound. Besides, the pub is just across the road from the college where I spent my Oxford year, St.John's, and a favourite of Johnnies, so I had another excuse to be there. (I always did wonder why Lewis, who was at Magdalen, and Tolkien, who was at Merton, would want to meet there. It is at the other end of Oxford city centre from both colleges. I suspect that that was its real attraction - no danger of running into a college member and get caught up in college business.)

It was a wonderful couple of days, though as exhausting as anything I have ever done. Almost at the start of my first day, I stumbled upon a lot of ultra-cheap second-hand books, and could not see my way not to buy any less than ten; so I spent much of Friday dragging along this extra weight, and I'll let you imagine what the cumulative effect was. But for the place and the company, I would do it again.

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