Don’t Panic Mirror Decal for Towel Day

Design & Designers, Geek out!

This year, here in the U.S. Towel Day or May 25 is also Memorial Day (which is always the last Monday in May).

As the unofficial start of summer, it’s the perfect opportunity to do something geeky and vacationy.

Made of Sundays Dont Panic Mirror Decal

Made of Sundays

We’re as of yet undecided – quite understandably – of what exactly we’d like to do. But just like the peeps in Hitchhikers’ Guide to the Galaxy, we won’t panic while exploring our options. 🙂

(The mirror decal photo is by Made of Sundays – visit their site for more!)

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Happy Star Wars Day

Design & Designers, Geek out!, Stunt Double

This oldie but goodie is awesome not just on Star Wars Day: this observatory was painted to look like R2-D2.

Facebook Hochschule Kaiserslautern R2-D2 Observatory

Hochschule Kaiserslautern via Facebook

The paintjob is the work of Professor Hubert Zitt at the Zweibrücken campus of Hochschule Kaiserslautern (University of Applied Sciences), Germany. (For an article in English, see e.g. My Modern Met.) The observatory was transformed with a bit more than a lick of paint by the Professor, some students of his, his father-in-law and a professional painter.

I cannot imagine how long it must’ve taken them, but the results are great!

As an aside, my linguist brain was tickled to find that in Germany, it is customary in formal situations to address lecturers with their full titles. For example, years ago when I helped Husband with his research, he was called Herr Doktor Professor in his German correspondence. I just love the variety of language use! 🙂

Found via Good Stuff Happened Today.

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Awesome Solar System Throw Pillows

Design & Designers, Geek out!

Many people in my social bubble have turned to handcrafts during the covid-19 pandemic as a way to pass the time and provide comfort. I’ve seen such a wide spread of projects and patterns and inspiration as a consequence, and enjoyed every one. Here’s an example.

ReadyMade August-September 2010 p32

Pillows by Heather Lins, photo by Cameron Sadeghpour. ReadyMade Aug-Sept 2010, p. 32

Solar system throw pillows by Heather Lins; photo by Cameron Sadeghpour for ReadyMade magazine Aug-Sept 2010.

I found this while browsing inspiration for a pillow project. This doesn’t quite do it for my present needs, but they’re awesome nevertheless.

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Nerdy Pencils Confirm that Brains Are Always in Fashion

Geek out!, Thumbs Up

These nerdy pencils made me laugh, starting with “Brains are the new black”!

Etsy NewtonAndTheApple Geeky Pencils

NewtonAndTheApple on Etsy

The pencils come with a catchphrase, each on its own color ranging from black via blues to white:

  • “Brains are the new black”
  • “Dare to be square”
  • “Endeavour to be clever”
  • “Nerd is the word”
  • “It’s chic to be geek”

LOL! 😀 From NewtonAndTheApple on Etsy.

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Bright Idea: British Murder Mystery Where Stewart and McKellen Garden and Solve Crimes

Geek out!, Movies & TV

Connecticut-based author M.L. Brennan had a brilliant idea the other day and tweeted it out. Basically she posits a murder mystery show set in Britain where “Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen are elderly widower neighbors who bicker a lot about their gardens, and also solve crimes”. Brennan also suggests plot points and gives her casting choices for the supporting characters as well.

 

I really encourage you to read as much of the long, rambling thread as possible. It brightened our evening a lot one night when positivity was needed.

Here’s the beginning:

 

Absolutely fabulous, right? Stewart and McKellen be amazing together.

Like I saw someone remark, I bet we could crowdfund this baby in a second. I sure would watch the hell out of this show! 😀

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Letter Tiles Make a DIY Floor Better

Arts & Crafts, Geek out!

While browsing my inspiration binders for solutions for another problem, I rediscovered this nifty floor treatment from ReadyMade magazine June/July 2010:

ReadyMade June-July 2010 p88

Robin Reimer; photo by Kritsada Panichgul. ReadyMade magazine, June-July 2010, p. 88

As a word nerd, I especially appreciate repurposing letter tiles for this project (likely from Scrabble). Right outside an exterior door may not be the best place for wood tiles, though, but I suppose thorough finishing would take care of that.

The only problem if I were doing this kind of a project might be the urge to arrange specific words here and there and getting carried away with it! LOL! 🙂 😀

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Last-Minute Han Solo Valentines

Arts & Crafts, Bits in Spaaace!, Geek out!

Need a last minute Valentine’s Day card for your Star Wars sweetheart? No problem – Havalah at Sister, What! made three free printable cards, and they’re not too scruffy-looking at all. Here’s the Han Solo one, for instance:

Sisters What Havalah Han Solo Valentines Printable

“I’d be solo without you” – LOL! So awesome. The other two designs clearly refer The Mandalorian series (which I haven’t seen yet, waah).

Thank you for sharing, Havalah!

Happy Valentine’s Day, or friends’ day as it’s known in Finland!

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Most Memorable Stories of the Past Decade

Books & Mags, Geek out!

So far this year, I’ve seen a number of posts listing the best books of the past decade. For example, the Boston Public Library has a top ten fantasy novels and a top ten sci-fi novels list, and Adri and Joe list their best books at Nerds of the Feather. And of course, the definition of best varies enormously from site to site and writer to writer. The point, though, is to talk about books. 🙂

Here’s my take on the “best of” list – the most memorable stories of the past ten years. And I’ll tell you upfront that I’m going to cheat: instead of listing a dozen or so monographs, I’m including groups of books when appropriate.

 

Katherine Addison: The Goblin Emperor. The way an abused minor relative dismissed to the edges of the realm claims the throne and becomes an emperor who believes in himself is beautifully described.

Current Reading 2x Becky Chambers

Becky Chambers: ALL of it! The Long Way to a Small and Angry Planet; A Closed and Common Orbit; Record of a Spaceborn Few; To Be Taught, If Fortunate. I just LOVE her humanity-affirming style.

Thoraiya Dyer: Titan’s Forest series (so far I own Crossroads of Canopy and Echoes of Understorey). I don’t really care about the people, but the forest is so astounding it might as well be a major character in the story! (Note to self: Get Tides of the Titans.)

Jim C. Hines: Libriomancer. I wasn’t quite as grabbed by the sequels, but this one contains a scene so out of this world (literally!) that it got me to sit bolt upright in my armchair (when Isaac took the automaton to the moon).

N.K. Jemisin: The Killing Moon and The Shadowed Sun. I had heard good things about TKM long before picking it up; I kept resisting it because of the title – at the time I was so, so, SO tired of dystopias and violence in my fiction. I wish I could remember why I decided to pick it up, though; whatever it was, I’m thankful, for Jemisin immediately became by favorite living author.

Mary Robinette Kowal: The Calculating Stars and The Fated Sky. These surprised me, since I really am not interested in 1950s and 60s. At all!

Yoon Ha Lee‘s Machineries of the Empire series (Ninefox Gambit, Raven Stratagem and Revenant Gun) is so different from anything I’ve read before. I’m lagging behind in my reading, though, and haven’t yet gotten to the third book. Bad me! (Note to self: Check whether I already bought it or not!)

Likitalo Waning Moon Duology

Leena Likitalo‘s historical fantasy duology The Five Daughters of the Moon and The Sisters of the Crescent Empress were loosely inspired by a setting that I find completely uninteresting (end of the Romanov family and revolution in Russia), but the books proved I should keep an open mind.

Karin Lowachee: Warchild. Shifting alliances and survival story extraordinaire. Without gore.

Emma Newman‘s Planetfall series: Planetfall, After Atlas, Before Mars and Atlas Alone. Which author has the gumption to destroy a planet and stay around to see what it does to people?

Nnedi Okorafor: Who Fears Death. It was part of my 21 Authors reading project, and even though I like the Binti trilogy more, there’s no denying that WFD has serious staying power.

Mike Pohjola: Ihmisen poika. Autobiographical fiction that also includes some of the history of introducing larping to Finland. Note: Mike is a friend, and there’s also a reference to me, well-veiled but there. 🙂

Current Reading All Systems Red Artifical Condition

Martha Wells‘s Murderbot diaries (so far published are All Systems Red, Artificial Condition, Rogue Protocol and Exit Strategy, with full-length novel Network Effect forthcoming this year). The series is all-round excellent, but Murderbot really is the best grumpy, conscientious, self-preservation-centered protagonist there is. (Note to self: Must. Read. Again. Soon!)

 

Also, I unfortunately had to skip a couple of books like A Jane Austen Education: How Six Novels Taught Me About Love, Friendship, and the Things That Really Matter by William Deresiewicz or Kelley Eskridge’s Solitaire, either because they aren’t novels or I came to them too late.

What would you pick and why?

Tardis Dress Is Bigger on the Inside, Too

Arts & Crafts, Design & Designers, Geek out!, Stunt Double

Take a look at this absolutely brilliant Tardis dress:

Tumblr May Yet Tardis Dress Collage

May Yet on Tumblr; collage by Eppu Jensen

It was made in 2018 by May Yet for a friend to wear at the Tokyo Comic Con. Sadly, the original post where I found it is now gone, but Yet wrote a new post where they give a bit more info and show new photos.

The dress is so gorgeous you could also wear it for semi-formal, non-geeky events. The absolutely best feature is that IT’S BIGGER ON THE INSIDE! Aaaaah! 😀

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.