In the meantime, stuff's happened, like it does.
My SGA Art Santa gift is a marvellous Ronon cartoon - go read and enjoy it; it's got some hilarious details. It's called Ronon vs Christmas, and I am so with him on that one.
In Yuletart, my gift art is a lovely Ray/Fraser winter scene by ria_oaks - Snowball Fight. It has the boys fooling about and a snowman with a mountie hat. Very refreshing for me, as here in NZ we're heading into an unusually hot summer, so admiring it cools me off.
My own Yuletart entry was in the White Collar fandom, just for a change - called Promenade (here's the AO3 link). It's an historical AU set back in the Regency period, with Peter/Elizabeth/Neal. I had such fun dressing them up in lovely clothes and I've always been a sucker for those long, curved Georgian terraces in Bath.
Recs - It's very exciting with all the SGA Santas posting fics and art.
My recs so far from the fic side of things are (haven't read all posted yet but of those I've read, these are the recs):
The Five Most Popular Recipes In the Atlantis Mess Hall (McKay/Sheppard, Gen, R) - this is marvellous - it's filled with quirky details, those wonderful explorations of the ordinary/extraordinary aspects of life in another galaxy, bringing the day-to-day reality of the expedition to life. Just brilliant.
The Spaces Between (McKay/Sheppard, R) - about 30,000 words and an interesting take on the alternate universe trope, with J & R each in relative dystopias in different realities (neither is canon), trying to get together across the universes. Competently written and held my interest.
That's What he Said (Gen, G) A nice outsider POV story of a mission gone wrong because of idiot teenagers. Good to find a village where the leaders think things through sensibly and try to be just.
Crossroads (McKay/Sheppard, M) An interesting Pegasus-based AU featuring Rodney and bug!John (a weakness of mine) on a Vegas-like planet where pleasure's the business. Drew me in and kept me engaged with some great worldbuilding.
Encounter at Farpoint (Ford/Keller, PG13) Med student Jen Keller goes clubbing and meets a young Aiden Ford. Surprisingly plausible and some great characterization touches.
And the SGA art recs (abandoning any pretense of disguising which work was mine!):
Art in Sepia (Lorne/Parrish, PG) Interesting collage of filtered/transformed images and a great subdued tan/gold/olive colour palette.
Ides of March (John/Rodney, PG) Well constructed historical AU Roman Empire manip that manages to get the right body-types for them both (Sheppard being exceptionally hot as a gladiator) and great facial expressions.
Bantos Practice (Sheppard/Lorne/McKay, T) Original art of an exceptionally pretty Sheppard and Lorne sparring, while Rodney watches appreciatively. Great drawing and colouring.
I happened on this story about a wild Turkish fox and a cat who're best buds - you can't look at these photos and tell me these guys aren't soulmates - possibly it was love at first sight. I desperately want fanfic about them. Also, with my penchant for writing animal transformation fic, in my head the fox is Sheppard and the cat's McKay. Warning for extreme cuteness.
My Mum had 3 teeth extracted 2-3 weeks ago. Nasty for her, and led to Adventures With Mush for me, in the kitchen. In the course of exploring the softer side of food, I came up with an amazing blue cheese sauce for fish. Happened to do it with fresh red cod, but any white fish'd be fine.
- bake the fish inside a aluminium foil parcel, together with lemon or lime juice, and S&P.
- make a white sauce (melt butter in a pot, stir in flour to thicken, dilute with milk until it's the right thickness, plus S&P to taste, several capers, and (magic ingredient) some crumbled soft blue cheese (we have a cheese here called creamy blue - very like the Danish 'Blue Castello').
- serve fish and apply sauce (plus stuff like potatoes and asparagus, whatever). Melt in the mouth yum.
And now for something more bizarre and less fun. But possibly useful. I sometimes organize visiting speakers and recently we had this guy from the USA who's an expert, I gather, in advising about the psychological aspects of hostage situations. Which are apparently more common than you'd think, ranging from the commonest (domestic dispute gone ballistic) to the occasional (Ray Kowalski as a kid scenario with people held in a bank by inept robbers) up to the (hopefully very rare) serious political terrorist ghastliness. So anyway, FWIW (and I'd take it with a grain of salt as the guy did seem to love his celebrity status a little too much) here are his top four tips for surviving if you get caught up as a hostage (or, more importantly, to use when writing fic about a hostage situation!).
- When the hostages first make their move there's a lot of chaos and their main objective is to get control. You can often just walk away in the initial chaos and they won't stop individuals from leaving. Do it if you can. (which is not to say do it if the hostage-taker's screaming at you personally to get down and pointing a gun at you!)
- They usually don't want the hassle and complications of anyone with a medical condition (or the very young or very old and frail), so declare it if you can and you'll most likely be released.
- Don't be a leader. Anyone who steps forward as the leader of the hostages is vastly more likely to get killed - they don't like competition for control.
- When the authorities finally move in it's a very dangerous time. Stay flat on the ground or hidden until it's really clear that the situation's safe. Don't wave or try to call out to attract the [police/FBI/armed offenders' squad etc.]'s attention - they're really hyped and you're likely to get shot by friendly fire. Also, unless it's happening in a medical ICU, they usually go in with a flashbang, so be ready for that.
In other non-fannish news, today we bought a new armchair for my Mum, and my own favourite armchair promptly collaped under me this evening and is no more. It feels like there's some sort of message in that, if only I can decipher it. (Chairs are sentient and they've had it up to here with being sat on and pushed around? The god of second-hand furniture was pissed that I bought a new chair?
And briefly - it's so long since I last posted that these are old news on the AO3, but I recorded a short podfic of Euler's Jewel by Basingstoke, as an auction thing for which (that_which) - there's a slightly longer podfic due as well, now I've gotten the new PC to stop making loud whumpawhumpawhumpa fan noises like the M*A*S*H intro. Also posted art for trillingstar from the same auction - an illustration for Trillingstar's The Triboelectric Effect.
Future fannish plans? Well, I still haven't managed to stop enrolling in challenges. In Jan and Feb I'll do SG_Flyboys (John/Cam) and then the Ante Up Losers fanwork exchange. I DID manage not to sign on for Yuletide, thank all the muses. So maybe I'll get at least one of the medium-to-long SGA fics I've been bunnied for done in the next 2-3 months - hey, a story with no challenge deadline, that'd be a change!
Hope you're all well, wrapped up warm if you're in the Northern hemisphere or covered with sunblock if you're downunder, and not in a hostage situation.