July 9th, 2007

Emmy (sad)

How the dog feels about rain

Emmy is a German Shepherd mix, the mix being something small, floppy-eared, and no more a water dog than a German is. She is also crate-trained, and her crate (which is much too big for her) sits immediately to the right of the back door. Chad has a picture, complete with mangled literary reference.

This morning, a summer thunderstorm was pouring down rain when we got up. I let her out back, in case she needed to go to the bathroom that badly. She didn't, I let her in—and she went directly into her crate and curled up in a little ball at the very very back.

I asked her a magic question ("Are you hungry?", which usually gets her running from anywhere in the house) and put down her breakfast. She stayed curled up in a little ball at the very very back of her crate. I tossed a treat in her bowl, and she came out to eat. When she finished eating—right back in her crate.

I made my own breakfast before our morning walk, instead of after, hoping the storm would pass. Normally she'd be around my feet as I buttered my toast, hoping I'd drop some; lying at my feet while I ate, hoping I'd drop some; and snuffling for crumbs on my chair after I finished. (She likes toast.) Today, she stayed curled up in a little ball at the very very back of her crate.

I coaxed her out by talking to her, rubbed her ears, and told her that she was a good dog and the rain had stopped. (It had. I wouldn't lie to her.) She wagged her tail and snuffled for toast crumbs . . . until she saw me getting my rain gear. Then she went and sat behind the farthest corner of the dining room table. When I asked her another magic question—"Do you want to go for a walk?"—she went directly into her crate and curled up in a little ball at the very very back.

I tried to coax her out again. She wagged her tail just a little and rolled slightly onto her side—either to show her belly, or to make it harder for me to get at her collar, I'm not sure. What she did not do, was move.

I sighed. I checked the window to confirm that the rain really had stopped. Then I crawled into the crate and clipped the leash onto her collar.

Once I did that, she reluctantly got up and suffered herself to be taken outdoors. And we had a very nice walk.

But boy, does she hate the rain.

wood cat

Readercon: Bookclub on Little, Big

Previously-scheduled doctor's appointment this afternoon, after which I just came home because I feel lousy. So have a panel report, and an updated roundup.

Description:

The Readercon Book Club.
Judith Berman, Ron Drummond (L), Elizabeth Hand, Graham Sleight, Konrad Walewski.
In celebration of its 25th anniversary edition, an in-depth discussion of John Crowley's Little, Big.

I hadn't planned to take notes on this, but I was very sleepy and thought it would be a good way to keep myself awake. Disclaimer: I haven't read Little, Big for a long time, so my notes may be misguided in places.

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wood cat

Readercon: Other Points of View

This was a good one. Description:

Other Points of View.
David Louis Edelman, Laurie J. Marks (L), Maureen McHugh, Wen Spencer, Peter Watts.
In several places, Karen Joy Fowler's The Jane Austen Book Club adopts a first-person plural viewpoint: "we" are thinking about the conversation described, and the reader gets to think about who, exactly, "we" may be—not everyone in the room! While third person and first person singular are the standard viewpoints in fiction, here we talk about the alternatives, and when we (you?) can best employ them.

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[ Readercon link roundup ]

wood cat

Readercon: Fantasy as Inner Landscape

I'd say this was disappointing, but I didn't really understand the panel description in the first place, so I can't complain that it wasn't what I expected.

Also, the mikes and/or speakers in this room really did not work well, so I frequently had to struggle just to recognize the words coming out of people's mouths.

Description:

Fantasy as Inner Landscape.
John Crowley, Greer Gilman, Kelly Link, Kathryn Morrow (L), Paul Park, Michael Swanwick.
It's easy to criticize fantasy for its apparent acceptance of outmoded social structures, and in fact we've done so in past panels such as "Efland Über Alles" and "The Return of the Prime Minister." But are the social structures of fantasy actually a metaphor for inner experience? The king, the knights, the aristocracy, and the noble peasants who aspire to one or more of the above—do these appeal to writers and readers not because of any fondness for their reality, but because they provide a map of human experience and growth? Readercon hopes to put the audio recording of this panel online at some point after the convention.

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[ Readercon link roundup ]