fayanora: Elle tongue (Elle tongue)
While listening to a couple Vocaloid songs - Vocaloid is apparently a computer program one can use to create music that includes lyrics sung by your choice of computer voices, voices that are surprisingly realistic - I had this sudden memory of a story of some kind I read or saw on TV (I don't remember the media) wherein part of the story was something about a prolific author that turned out to be a computer. It wasn't sentient, it was just a computer that was generating popular books via some algorithm. And that is literally all I remember about it. But it was an important point in the plot, like the conclusion of a mystery, I think.
fayanora: SK avatar (Default)
I have a friend who is a lesbian senior (60) with asperger's syndrome who doesn't think she can find love. She's very technologically deficient, can't use the Internet. So I'm trying to find places where she can meet lesbians around her age, in person, here in Portland Oregon. Which would be easier if she didn't also hate going to bars. I tried Meetup, Fetlife, even Google. There are dating sites, of course, but not a lot of what I'm really looking for. Meetup has Shades of Lavender, but that meets in a pub.

Anyway, so if you know of any places in Portland for gay seniors to meet, that meets somewhere other than a bar or pub, let me know, okay?

Edit: She doesn't want anyone younger than 43, and prefers people older than herself.

Question

Mar. 11th, 2016 12:02 am
fayanora: Steph Death Glare (Steph Death Glare)
Is there such thing as a cold sore that only affects the gums and leaves no mark on the outside of the body? Because every so often, I have several days in a row where eating becomes painful for my lower gums, on the side next to the lips. It comes mysteriously, and disappears just as mysteriously after a few days, and it can be as much as three or four months or more between flare-ups.

The worst part of it is eating dry things that lodge themselves down there and sting like a motherfucker. Trying to get them out with my tongue just makes it hurt worse. Getting it out with water hurts, too. So I have to try to avoid dry foods when whatever this is flares up. And also I have to shove food back to the molars and against the back of the mouth so pieces don't get up in the front of the lower jaw.

Oh yeah, and sometimes the inside of the bottom lip hurts as well. Not as much as the gums, though.
fayanora: Steph Chloe Dartagnan (Steph Chloe Dartagnan)
I have a character who is an albino. And it occurred to me today that in addition to her eye protection, she should have skin protection, too. So far, she just wears robes with a cowl and usually leaves the cowl up, which has the added benefit of hiding her appearance from others. (Albinos are considered soul-less by her people, and are often treated worse than animals.) But I need other ideas for skin protection as well.

The story takes place on a world with magic. They also have technology (magical technology mostly). I don't know if they have sunscreen yet or not. It's not terribly important, since at her power level magic-wise, she can heal from burns and stuff with relative ease, but it would still hurt and it would still take a day or two to heal from a sunburn. And she does need her cowl down to use a lot of her powers, because seeing clearly helps her out, especially in battle.

I'm also not entirely sure what the effects of solar radiation on an albino would be.

Anyway, if anyone can think of something else to protect her that would be appropriate to the setting, I would appreciate it a lot. I mean, I could always go with "amulet that filters out certain light spectra," but if there are non-magical ways of doing it too, that would help, since some of her enemies can sense the use of magic.

Also, she originally comes from Okonikaat, her planet's version of Africa* (though living in a colony nation of exiles now), but as an albino I don't think that "black" is appropriate to describe her, so if anyone can think of another way, preferably a PC way, to refer to her ethnicity, I would love to hear it. Best I've come up with so far is based on the caste system of the country she lives in, and so: "Ruling Caste features and hair texture, but snow-white skin and hair." (Well, that and "Okonikaati," but I fully expect that to go over the heads of a lot of [white] readers, even after the explanation of what a typical Okonikaati looks like.)

* = Minus the white colonialism, since whites are an extreme minority on Orion.
fayanora: pensive (pensive)
My roommate badly needs glasses. She could afford the glasses, but doesn't have the money to get a prescription, which would cost around $200, and has no health insurance. Does anyone know where she could go to get a free or really cheap eye exam and glasses prescription? Location: Portland, Oregon.
fayanora: Djao'Kain (Djao'Kain)
I was wondering if anyone had some advice for me. I want to draw (on the computer) this person: https://31.media.tumblr.com/c127f25d5000351904510c9efe5dd647/tumblr_mz1w1nlYcz1qbrc7uo1_500.png as one of my Goddesses, but I want to make her skin darker. Like, as close to completely black as is humanly possible, and from some of the pictures I've seen, some people DO look almost unnaturally black. The problem lies not so much in the skin color itself but the way I shade my drawings, using different shades of the same color since that's basically what happens in real life. But since she's not already as dark as I want her to be for this drawing, I don't have a proper reference. I may just try it anyway, but any advice would be helpful. Advice on anything from finding a picture of someone that dark in a similar pose with similar lighting, to coming up with a palette for someone with such a black skin tone in similar lighting. Or even some kind of modeling program that could give me a model to work from. Anything at all, really, that might be useful.

Thanks in advance! Thanks for listening, at least.

In case anyone was curious, I was thinking of drawing her as Morshenda, Deity of Darkness. Something about the image just calls to me. Though if I can't figure out how to make her the right color, I may just go with her existing colors and have her be Kusunia, Deity of Planets.
fayanora: Hermione not amused (Hermione not amused)
I'm sorry, but would someone please explain this whole Mitt Romney and binders for women thing? Because I've been so steeped for so long in transgender issues that, to me, the only things I can think of when I hear the word "binders" is either breast binders for FTMs or Trapper Keeper type binders, and neither of these makes any sense to me, in a Mitt Romney context.
fayanora: Phoebe in Wonderland by LJ user bitemeee (Phoebe in Wonderland)
Someone on my friendslist said "Autistic brains like ours have a hard time multi-tasking" and I just sat there staring at that with a "WTF?" expression on my face. Because I'm a diagnosed Aspie and I don't have any problem multi-tasking. Sure, sometimes my mind is going so much about so many things that I occasionally appear to have trouble multi-tasking, because when I'm thinking about 12 different things at once, I may not catch something someone said. But I can follow two different conversations at once, and even join in, when I'm not thinking of other stuff. And when I'm on the computer, I'm doing about a dozen related things in my mind at once. So the suggestion that aspies and auties can't multi-task is weird to me.

Thoughts?

Personally, if Aspies are really supposed to have that problem, I wonder if the reason I don't is because of my being a multiple.
fayanora: by lj user holdonbaby (Elle looks up)
As you hopefully know by now, I am a multiple mind, a collective of souls in one body, a collective that shares memories, no less. You should also already know that we have 9 members in the system; four humans, five non-humans. It gets a bit more complicated when you consider that Shao'Kehn is a collective inside of a collective, having at least 13 Aspects of her own that we know of. So it's a little crowded in here.

Something has been happening for months, something we've been actively resisting. A fictional character of ours, one Lady Lyria Spellspinner... well... for months, we've been sensing an attempt of whatever process makes new collective members to bring her into existence as a member of the collective. And while she's a wonderful character, and we like her very much, it's crowded enough in here as it is. We accept that she could be a useful asset; she takes shit from nobody, yet knows how to be diplomatic about it. She could potentially help fight the depression we've been living with our whole lives.

That said, every time a new member comes in, chaos ensues. And we can't help but think that she might not appreciate being stuck in this body with us. (While also allowing that she's very pragmatic and could also take the facts of things very well indeed.) So there are reasons for and against letting the process continue. And I just don't know what direction to go in. I mean, the process wasn't started by any of us, it just started happening. So if it's subconscious, we can't know if it's a good thing or not.

We tried, the first time it started, to dismiss it as the forming of a Mask. A Mask being a non-sentient construct that alters the behavior of one wearing it to fit a certain role. The person wearing it remains in control, is aware of the change, and can take the mask off whenever s/he wants to. We thought this was a mask, at first, because for one, we have a lot of Masks based on characters of ours. And secondly, there was a time in the first year of the whole multiplicity realization where we thought someone was a Face (member of the collective) but turned out to be just a Mask. But we've had years of experience sorting through the inner landscape and making sense of it, so it didn't take long for the "Lyria is a Mask" idea to go out the window. The stirrings we were sensing were definitely saying "some piece of our collective soul is mutating into something new." And now it's a question of whether or not we can (or should) stop that mutation process. Can the soul shard in question be stopped and restored to its previous state? Or is that too late? Should we let it mutate?

It wouldn't be the first time a fictional character we created came to life as a member of the collective. Lolita Leigh Smith, our resident Goth lesbian, started out as a fictional character. She manifested as a member of the collective because she filled a niche; she resonated so well with the "goth" aspect and the "loves women" aspect, as well as the "artist" and "music lover" aspects that she awoke as a sentient being inside us.

And now, the same conditions apply to Lyria. We've been enamored of the "dark sorceress" role for a long time, and have a dress we call our "dark sorceress dress," that we've been wearing more often lately, especially with our green cloak. And we started wearing a leather pouch held by a belt as a purse because Lyria did, and the idea was cool enough we copied it. Lyria would fill a niche in us. She resonates with not only the "dark sorceress" role, but also with lots of different personality traits, and she would fill in some personality gaps. She has anger issues in common with Alex, but unlike Alex it takes a lot more to get her angry (though once she gets angry, RUN!), so could help with that issue. And she has a LOT in common with Shao'Kehn. The pragmatism, the power and how they use it, their views of life overlap in important ways.

So with all this in mind, we're thinking "oh maybe we could just make ourselves more like Shao'Kehn, so we wouldn't need Lyria." But we're also thinking, "She could be very helpful." Also, there's the thought that it might be too late. We might be in denial about something that's already happened, or maybe the process is incomplete but so far along that it's going to happen eventually no matter how hard we resist. Or we could be blowing it all out of proportion. Evidence in favor of that possibility is becoming more abundant. It started out subtle enough, so that we didn't notice the (possible) significance when we got our LJ userhead changed to that of a black woman.

And while there's no guarantee that a subconscious process like this is necessarily a good thing, it's also possible that this isn't happening by accident.

Blarg. I went away and lost the thread of my thoughts. Oh well, I think I got enough of my thought about the subject down. So... opinions?
fayanora: Pi stationary (Pi stationary)
Okay, I admit I haven't paid a lot of attention to the vampire side of things, because I'm not a sanguine (the sight of blood makes me ill). And my few attempts to get energy from other people just drained me, so I'm not a psi vamp.* But I don't like sunlight (bright sunlight actually makes me literally sneeze), I sunburn easily, and I catch myself making hissing noises in response to sunlight and other displeasing things. Now, I'm the first to admit that I identify with so many kin-types that I might not have any vampire leanings at all (the "symptoms" FLOABW might be due to my other facets), and it may just be related to having a dark Goddess sharing my body with me, but I'd like to know if there are more types of vampires than just sanguines and psi-vamps.

So yeah, TL;DR = Are there any types of vampires other than sanguines and psi-vamps?

* However, I have been able to draw power from the earth. Or maybe it was the grass.
fayanora: Group Intellect (Group Intellect)
At OryCon this year, one of the female singers, Joan Gaustad, sang a Romanian lullabye. It was the most morose thing I've ever heard, and I loved it. But I can't remember the name, to find on Google, and her name is not pulling up anything relevant. So, more clues, for anyone who might know: the translation she read beforehand was something like "I have known sorrow all my life, since my mother rocked me in my crib" while she was weeping. There was more to the translation, it was a VERY melancholy piece, but that's all I remember. I can remember parts of the song itself, but I don't know how to describe it, except that it was very nasal. (Though that could have just been her voice.) Does anyone have an idea which that might be?
She also had a Ukrainian song that was cool, something about visiting mother's house and the yard being overgrown, and there may have been a raven or other bird in it. (From what I remember of the translation.)

Oh, and she was on stage with a man using a bandura (I forget if it was 52 or 56 strings) and one song he played, a Ukrainian folk song, was tremendously complex and beautiful. Parts of it sounded like hoof-beats. That song was one of many Ukrainian songs about a woman's sorrow at her lover going to war. (Except it had no words.)
fayanora: Phoebe in Wonderland by LJ user bitemeee (Phoebe in Wonderland)
I have a humanoid species, the Ah'Koi Bahnis, that I've been trying to think of unique instruments and/or musical styles for them for ages. So far all I have is a kind of choral singing that I don't think humans have done yet, and one other instrument that may or may not be a dud.

I mean, I'm sure they have string instruments and drums and wind instruments. But look at earth: the guitar, the bandura, the banjo, the sitar, harp, harpsichord, are all strings. The piano crosses percussion and strings (Forizano in the Lyria stories calls the piano a "percussion harp"). And because this planet is part of my spirituality as well, I like coming up with details like unique takes on instruments.
fayanora: pensive (pensive)
Okay everyone, take a look under the cut at the rough sketch I drew of a possible instrument that came to mind today, as something the Ah'Koi Bahnis might play. I want opinions on whether or not it would work. It's a stringed instrument (string number probably varies) with a drum on the other side. Could both sides be played at the same time? If so, do you think it would sound good, or horrible?

Here is the cut, since the picture is big. )
fayanora: Picard facepalm (Picard facepalm)
Anyone else had curry? What is it supposed to taste like? Because I tried making my chicken and veggie stuff with yellow curry this time, instead of taco seasoning, and on its own it tastes like chicken and vegetables. Which is very bland. I mean, I thought I had more than enough. It's bright yellow. But it doesn't taste like I expected curry to taste. Did I not put enough in, or is this another case of me being unable to taste something I should be able to? (Like watermelon: tastes like sugar, nothing else).
fayanora: Picard facepalm (Picard facepalm)
I had an interesting idea inspired by a picture of a black-and-yellow striped spider, and as a result I think I'm going to add a creature called a spider-bee to Orion's list of creatures. The spider-bee will be bees that swarm their prey, sting them into paralysis, and then wrap them in silk and take them back to the hive. Once at the hive, they bite the victim and wait for the bite's venom to liquefy the remains. Then they drain that fluid into honeycomb-like structures to feed to the queen.

Now, I seem to recall some spiders can eat birds, frogs, and even small mammals. Do those still liquefy the prey's soft tissues? If so, how? Inside the silk wrappings, maybe? I think the spider-bees would have to be large enough to catch lots of small animals, because I doubt a diet of just insects would sustain a hive of such creatures.

Oh one last thing, they are as protective of their hives as Africanized honeybees are.
fayanora: SK avatar (Default)
I was just thinking, for some reason, about McCarthyism and the whole thing of "Are you now, or have you ever been, a member of the communist party?" And it occurred to me to wonder WTF is up with the "have you ever been?" part of that. What if someone was a communist back in their wayward youth, and then changed their mind and became a die-hard patriot? What then? Were they rewarded for their honesty about that? Or questioned for information on the communist party? Or what? Or did they get hung out to dry either way? Why did McCarthy care if they'd once been commies if they weren't anymore?

Also, I'd be in big trouble if I were living back then. I've never joined any political parties, but my writing... at least two major cultures in my writing are rather Marxist, even though only one of them would have been able to hear about Marx before becoming that way.
fayanora: Djyahlah (Djyahlah)
Over ten years ago, I started to create the Trai'Pahg'Nan'Nog language, a trade language for my Traipah culture that is supposed to be a conlang even in that universe. But I've encountered problems with it. The rules of the language are basically a mix of English and Spanish rules (mostly English), and I started coming up with words in some really random ways, so that English words that one would think would be some of the first to get translated into TPNN don't have translations yet (like the shapes, for goodness sake!). Also, I was using related words to come up with new words, and given that some of these words were kind of long to begin with (heck, the word for "long" is 6 syllables long), trying to actually say much of anything in TPNN gets harder the more you try to say.

So I started a new conlang, called Trai'Pahg'Shah'Gog. I'm designing TPSG with an eye towards short words (1, 2, and 3 syllable base words) and a greater modular-ness but a higher number of base words (eventually). I've already made some impressive strides toward shortening things. For example, "I will run" in the original TPNN is "Thiin yahsoh hiahn." In TPSG, the same sentence would be "Fyortekeg." From about 5 syllables to 3. (And in TPNN it might have been longer than that; I can't seem to find the proper word for "run." Hiahn I took from dropping the "ihn" in the name "Hiahnihn," which means "runner.) And a bunch of really long words already have shortened versions. (Shortening TPNN words a lot speeds things up.)

Anyway, what I really need is a list of concepts/words to include in this new conlang. I have shapes and numbers done, and I'm making headway on a list of adjectives from Wikipedia. Oh, and colors! But where my first attempt basically had me translating words as I needed them, I'd like to do TPSG somewhat systematically. So any suggestions, like lists of common concepts/words, would be appreciated. Thanks in advance!
fayanora: Sammi Hanratty pigtails (Sammi Hanratty pigtails)
In my Mindeodean storyverse, humans go out into the galaxy and become a number of other species by genetic engineering. Some do this because they have to, to adapt to their environment. Others do it just for the hell of it. But basically, humans are (so far as anyone knows) the only life-forms in the universe with civilization.

I've recently come up with a colony for the Mindeodean storyverse that is a world (or possibly a whole solar system) full of different species of humans who resemble anthropomorphic animals. I want there to be a number of species on this planet, representing a variety of animal types, but I also need to keep the number of species down to a reasonable number since they can't interbreed. But I'm looking for more suggestions as well. Basic form of these species is: humanoid, furred, heads of different appearances.

So far, I have:
* Lagos, who look like humanoid rabbits or hares.
* The Felis look like cats of various kinds.
* Canis look like dogs, wolves, or foxes.
* Bovins look like cows.
* Porcins look like pigs.
* Rodens look like mice, rats, or other rodents.
* Reptils have scaly skin like reptiles. (Obviously, no fur on this one.)

I may narrow it down some more later, especially if I get lots of good suggestions. I'm not sure I like the Bovins or Porcins.

~ ~ ~

I also find that I have very few interesting species who are members of the Mindeodean Empire. Most of the really interesting species are part of The United Front, which is a different group, though allied with Mindeodeans. So any suggestions for interesting varieties of humans would be appreciated as well.
fayanora: Hit Girl (Hit Girl)
I have a story universe where humans have gone out amongst the stars and found lots of planets with life, but none with existing alien civilizations. They often undergo genetic engineering changes to adapt themselves to their new planets. This creates loads of different species of humans, including planets that still have the original Homo Sapiens Sapiens species.

A couple species went farther with this, and began doing genetic engineering over the course of thousands of years to give themselves enhancements. I already have a fair list of traits. The Mindeodeans, for one, have enhanced strength, stamina, immune systems, a high healing factor (rapid clotting of wounds; cuts heal in a matter of hours), the ability to regrow missing limbs, they have a 3000 year lifespan (females only ovulate once every 10 years to compensate), and their bones are titanium (a trait local to all Mindeodean animals). The Grelt, on the other hand, focused on intelligence. Their brains are larger and several times more complex than our own, they can multi-task very well, their corpus callosum is so thick with connections that the two hemispheres may as well be one, their brains are several times more active and have more connections than ours, they retain childlike brain plasticity well into their old age, and since the two species met, the Grelt have adopted a few of the Mindeodean traits for themselves (healing factor, lifespan, limb regrowth, stamina, and immune system). And the Mindeodeans are doing research into adopting some of the brain enhancements for their own species, too.

But the Mindeodean military is focusing on other traits, adding experimental traits to their soldiers which may eventually be voted on for introduction to the general populace. I don't have a definite list yet, as I need to decide which traits have already been adopted by the general populace, but my list of possibilities for the military-introduced traits include:

* Hold breath up to 2 hours (with normal metabolism)
* Slow down metabolism at will, even to a death-like state.
* Survive hard vacuum (certain insects on Earth can do this) for X time.
* Switching to a "conserve water" mode for duties/life in desert (another species of human already has this trait)
* Ability to feel magnetic north.

Also considering a few mental upgrades, especially since some of the mental enhancements the Grelt have can enhance reflexes and multi-tasking. That is fairly important for the Mindeodean military, as one way they have of keeping their soldiers from being killed is by having them pilot remote-controlled fighters. The better the brain, the more fighters they can control simultaneously.

But I'm really interested in more ideas for physical traits that can be added to benefit soldiers and/or the species in general. So if anyone has any suggestions they'd be willing to offer, I would appreciate it very much. (Hell, this would also give me ideas for enhancements to Lyria's soldiers, as well.)

Thanks in advance!
fayanora: pensive (pensive)
A few questions, actually. One, is masturbation considered a sin? If yes, how bad of one? Also, is donating sperm to a sperm bank a sin? I would think not, since it would be used for procreation. However, Catholicism might object to lesbians and gays or single mothers using it.

Completely off topic: I *love* this ergonomic keyboard! My only complaint is that the keys take a teensy bit too much effort to hit.

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fayanora: SK avatar (Default)
The Djao'Mor'Terra Collective

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