Gen Fic Swap: Dear Author

Jul. 24th, 2014 10:36 pm
fenellaevangela: text: Kirk & Spock & Bones & some guy in a red shirt. (Default)
[personal profile] fenellaevangela
Hello! I want to start this post by thanking you, anonymous author, for offering to write a story for me :-) Below I've included some general information about my tastes and some musings on my requests, in case you need inspiration.

I dislike: Excessive violence, gore, and sad endings. Angst isn't really my thing unless it's a stepping-stone on the way to everything working out.

I like: Both plot and fluff. Casefic is great, interesting AUs are great, one thousand words of characters bantering over coffee? Awesome! I'm also cool with crossovers between any of my requested fandoms, of you have an idea.

Orphan Black (Charlotte Bowles, Helena, Sarah Manning, Cosima Niehaus, Tony Sawicki)
I love the themes of family and identity in this show, and how those two intersect when the clones being thinking of each other as siblings. I'd like to see some interaction between clones that reflects their developing relationships with each other, maybe helping each other or doing some sort of bonding activity?

Supernatural (Anna Milton, Gabriel, Mary Winchester, Ellen Harvelle)
I'm not up to date with the show anymore, but since all the characters I've requested are dead, I don't think that'll be a problem for you ;-) What I'd really like is for them to NOT be dead! Maybe they never died like they did in the show (for example, I love a good Mary Lives AU), or maybe they help each other return to the land of the living? If you find yourself struggling to bring all four characters together within the confines of your story, please feel free to skip one or two of my requested characters.


Teen Wolf (TV) (Allison Argent, Cora Hale, Danny Mahealani, Erica Reyes, Kira Yukimura)
While I do enjoy this show, I would enjoy it more if it was more about the creation and development of the Beacon Hills pack and less about people dieing. You feel me? I would love if you could manage a story where most or all of my requested characters are alive and part of the pack. Other characters are welcome to play as well, but these five are ones I'd particularly like to see :-)
mm_writes: Sheep go to heaven, goats go to hell (Default)
[personal profile] mm_writes

It seems the vast majority of our Comcast problems are finally resolved. I could write a post that would take me days to finish describing the 15 or so hours we've collectively spent on the phone in the last few weeks trying to straighten out everything from signal to converter box to billing issues, the fact that for three different TV converter boxes they've sent out they've had to replace all but the last one at least once and had to replace the next-to-last-one twice, that I've had over $120 credited back to my account in the last few weeks for everything from $45 service calls (I can't be billed for service calls because I pay $3.95 a month for a Service Protection Plan - and thank God I do, because there's been a tech in my house every week for the last month now to straighten out everything from shipped-broken converter boxes to the day multiple techs falsely accused me of no longer having Internet because our privately-owned cable modem was broken - which turned out to have nothing to do with our modem and everything to do with a downed above-ground line at least a mile away from us!) to charges for shipping us converter boxes to replace the broken crap they sent out in the first place (I have a general rule that you won't be charging me shipping to replace anything YOU sent out busted in the first place, but nice try, guys) to overcharges for all kinds of channels I don't want and don't get to...my God, it's been endless.

I could write that post in all its gory details; how bad the customer service was at times would shock anyone. For instance, after sending us a new DVR/HD/DVD converter box yesterday they told us last night it didn't work so they'd have to send us out another tech to fix it. That would be the fourth tech I've had here in a month. My fiance was on the phone call and went ballistic: "I'm sorry ma'am, but with all due respect that is BULLSHIT. How come every time you send us a box we need a tech out here? How come every box you've ever sent us has been broken right out of the box? How come even after you send us new boxes to replace the broken boxes we STILL need another tech out here to make the box work or to get another box that does work? I'm sorry but this company has been nothing but problems since the day we signed up for service with them." Of course that tirade resulted in the box working no more than - I'm not kidding - 30 seconds later. That's the sort of customer service we get: perfectly unreal.

Upshot is that for all the bad ('bad' mostly in the range of unhelpful to falsely accusatory) customer service we've had, we get, despite what the body of the following email calls it, Internet Plus (25MBs) with Expanded Basic (77 channels), HBO, Streampix, and a freshly added DVR/HD/DVD converter box for just $44.99 a month, base charge (this is the replacement makeup offer for the one I rejected after multiple techs accused us of having a broken modem: that offer, which I turned down immediately, was for them to add a phone line to our service for "just" $10 more a month. I don't want their damn phone.) There is a modem rental they're still charging us for, but they've already credited my account $50 for renting it for nothing each month for the last year - simply because we never used it nor even took it out of the box it shipped to us in - and they claim they will back credit all additional monthly modem charges by next month when the returned modem is finally fully processed on their end.

This is the account as it stands now:

XFINITY Bundled Services
Internet Plus Includes Limited Basic note: that's Expanded Basic, HBO, Streampix, a standard definition digital converter note: that's an HD/DVR/DVD converter and remote for the primary outlet and Performance Internet Promotional Rate.
Promotional Rate for 12 months $ 44.99

Additional XFINITY TV Services
Addl Outlet $ 0.00
Digital Converter $ 0.00
Digital Adapter Additional Outlet $ 0.00
Digital Adapter Additional Outlet $ 1.99

Additional XFINITY Internet Services
Modem Rental $ 8.00 note: this charge will eventually be credited
Additional Products & Services
Service Protection Plan $ 3.95
Other Charges & Credits
In-Home Service Visit $ 39.95
note: this charge got credited
Install Fee In-Home Service fee $ 0.00
Broadcast TV Fee $ 1.50
Taxes, Surcharges & Fees $ 7.24

Grand Total $ 107.62 67.67

The reason the account is listed as Limited basic is because in my area of Florida Comcast has not yet added rate codes into their computers that allow me to have the actual package they offered me on the phone, so I had to spend yet another afternoon with a service tech last week to straighten that out. After he determined the problem was not with the converter box (for once!) nor with our lines nor cables (though while he was here, he did give us a much needed signal amplifier because our cable runs over 330 feet from the house out to the nearest tap across the street, which causes us to lose 5dB for every 100 feet of line we're running, or something like that, which was messing up our TV signal big-time) I had to spend another few hours on the phone with reps who ultimately claimed the problem could not be addressed until the following Tuesday because 'weekend' and 'go screw yourselves', apparently. It was Friday night by then. So I got my fiance on it that night and whaddaya know, the reps he spoke to got it straightened it out within minutes. Sometimes...I'm not trying to be sexist, but sometimes I think female call reps take men's complaints much more seriously than they take the same exact complaints when they come from women. So when things go south for me with Comcast - which, on average, is once a week - I'll just sic him on the reps and bam! Damned if everything I could not get through with them because it was like an endless morass of bullshit just smoothes right out with him on it.

So yeah, I could go on and on (the day they accused of us of trying to connect with a broken modem - about two weeks ago - was the worst thing I had to go through; literally exhausting and very frustrating every step of the way; we spent four hours collectively on the phone over that and had maybe six so-called techs swear that they could see no Internet signal on our end simply because our modem no longer worked - the damn thing still works fine to this day and the problem, as I said, turned out to be a snapped cable line at least a mile away, but we now own - not rent, own - an Xfinity modem that my fiance found on the job a few weeks ago, so it supports DOCSIS 3.0 and all that good stuff so we don't have to worry about using a non-supported modem anymore) but I can't because I don't really hate Comcast. Or big companies, as a matter of routine. To get me fired up enough to make the rest of you think it's a terrible company by way of simply describing how bad it's been to be their customer, I'd have to feel that way very deeply (thus my anti-AOL and anti-Google tears over the years: I feel that way very deeply, so much so that to this day my feelings about AOL remain completely unchanged). But Comcast is more mismanaged and misguided than truly a threat to anyone's pocketbook or peace of mind so I just can't muster up enough 'give a damn' to go on and on about all the problems we've had with them - I've given a lot of thought to it, but I just don't see the point.

Arizona Trip - partial update

Jul. 23rd, 2014 08:22 am
calystarose: Callisto from Xena & a rose (Default)
[personal profile] calystarose
De and I have been in Arizona (Flagstaff area) since last Wednesday, we leave to go home on Friday, but here are links to my tumblr posts with photos. These are but a small, small selection of the many photos she and I have taken while here.

July 17th - Sedona area mostly we just drove scenic routes here and didn't really stop anywhere.

July 18th - Sunset Volcano Crater and Grand Canyon we accidentally got on the wrong road heading out of Flagstaff, but because De is so fucking brilliant even the wrong road led to some of the attractions we had planned to do, so we just did them this day. We spent like three hours in Sunset Crater park, it was gorgeous.

July 19th - we were sort of fucking exhausted after yesterday, so we had a day to just hang out at the hotel.

July 20th - Arizona Snowbowl Chairlift and Museum of Northern Arizona Guess which two fools forgot to put on enough sunblock for high altitudes? *sigh*

July 21st - Arboretum and Riordan Mansion

July 22nd - Painted Desert, Petrified Forest and Meteor Crater Long ass drive, but absolutely gorgeous and worth it. Of special note, De got a really, really awesome photo of a petrified log. Check it out at the link. :D

That's it so far, more later!

Beyond the Pale

Jul. 23rd, 2014 05:51 pm
lea_hazel: The outlook is somewhat dismal (Feel: Crash and Burn)
[personal profile] lea_hazel
Get home from a dentist's appointment to find a large puddle of murky water on your kitchen floor where the pipe your landlord "fixed" is.

In an hour and twnty minutes I got a new game downloading, and when that happens, fuck reality.

Hustling

Jul. 22nd, 2014 06:28 pm
yourlibrarian: SamDeanWesternOutlines-cha (SPN-SamDeanWesternOutlines-cha)
[personal profile] yourlibrarian
1) New Planet of the Apes movie. Read more... )

2) American Hustle. Read more... )

3) Teen Wolf. Read more... )

4) Obesity is not just a human problem: "As the American people got fatter, so did marmosets, vervet monkeys and mice." Studies have shown correlations to various factors including chemicals, climate control, artificial lighting, and bacteria and viruses.

5) What the World Cup cost companies who guessed wrong about how teams would do.

Tech Ethics?

Jul. 21st, 2014 11:13 am
misskat: A cheerfully smug crab holding a bow, a sword, and an axe. (Smug crab)
[staff profile] misskat
Does anyone have recommendations for books/articles to read regarding the ethics of technology? With this whole "corporations are people" thing that's going around in the US right now, it occurs to me that computers, using the same criteria, could also be classified as people. Now isn't that an interesting thought?

Anyway, throw your recs in comments. :)
calliopes_pen: (taibhrigh hear the Ood song)
[personal profile] calliopes_pen
Skye McCole Bartusiak has passed away at the age of 21. As of now, there are reports that she died in her sleep, and that the fact she suffered from epileptic seizures may have been a contributing factor. May she rest in peace. I remember her as the actress that played young Charlie McGee in Firestarter 2: Rekindled. And thanks to the Sundance Channel airing it at one point, I also remember her as the little girl that was kidnapped by Sean Bean’s character in Don’t Say A Word.

John Fasano has passed away at the age of 52—as of now, while no official cause of death has been released, they do know that he died in his sleep. May he rest in peace. He was one of the many writers for Alien 3, and directed several horror films. I recall a few of the VHS covers for some of them, from back in the 80’s. I had been meaning to watch The Jitters (1989), so I’ll track that down shortly.

James Garner passed away Saturday night at the age of 86. May he, too, rest in peace. While he was most famous for his roles in Maverick and The Rockford Files, MST3K fans may also remember him from the episode where they riffed a movie called City Limits. As I have never seen an episode of The Rockford Files, I’ll have to catch an episode when it airs on Me-TV later today. Sound On Sight made a list of his top ten films.

Happy birthday to [personal profile] kate

Jul. 20th, 2014 08:28 pm
peoppenheimer: Photo of interesting tree stump in forest. (Default)
[personal profile] peoppenheimer
Happy birthday to the wonderful [personal profile] kate. May it be a year of blessings.

Daily Words

Jul. 20th, 2014 10:48 pm
lea_hazel: Typewriter (Basic: Writing)
[personal profile] lea_hazel
Things aren't hectic at work (ha!) and I have some extra time on my hands. I've been pouring some of that extra time into 750words.com. I'd heard about the site and the idea of "daily pages" more than once, but I guess I just thought finding the time to do it would be too much of a hassle. Actually, setting the time aside has been pretty good. I've been considering trying on a stricter morning routine, since morning is when I tend to lose a lot of minutes that add up into major time chunks.

I write a bit the same way as the journal entries here, except even less filtered. (I don't filter much here, but I obfuscate a bit.) Things being what they are, it's a convenient outlet for extraneous stress. Loud sudden noises and whatnot. This morning I strayed a bit and actually did some on-paper outlining. Which naturally meant more progress than "brainstorming" mentally on the bus. Really I need to get over writing habits which I know don't work. I believe I am still one character short of a complete cast, but the plot is coalescing. Oooh, plot! *scary noises*

Between that and completing a few too-long-delayed chores, I feel pretty good. I'd still like to have a sofa so that I can stream shows on my desktop and watch them while flopped on something soft instead of sitting up. Sitting up is a sucker's game.
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