Gretchen: On the International Space Station, you have astronauts from the US and from other English speaking countries and you have cosmonauts from Russia. And obviously it’s very important to get your communication right if you’re on a tiny metal box circling the Earth or going somewhere. You don’t want to have a miscommunication there because you could end up floating in space in the wrong way. And so one of the things that they do on the ISS – so first of all every astronaut and cosmonaut needs to be bilingual in English and Russian because those are the languages of space.

Lauren: Yep. Wait, the language of space are English and Russian? I’m sorry, I just said ‘yep’ and I didn’t really think about it, so that’s a fact is it?

Gretchen: I mean, pretty much, yeah, if you go on astronaut training recruitment forums, which I have gone on to research this episode…

Lauren: You’re got to have a backup job, Gretchen.

Gretchen: I don’t think I’m going to become an astronaut, but I would like to do astronaut linguistics. And one of the things these forums say, is, you need to know stuff about math and engineering and, like, how to fly planes and so on. But they also say, you either have to arrive knowing English and Russian or they put you through an intensive language training course.

But then when they’re up in space, one of the things that they do is have the English native speakers speak Russian and the Russian speakers speak English. Because the idea is, if you speak your native language, maybe you’re speaking too fast or maybe you’re not sure if the other person’s really understanding you. Whereas if you both speak the language you’re not as fluent in, then you arrive at a level where where people can be sure that the other person’s understanding. And by now, there’s kind of this hybrid English-Russian language that’s developed. Not a full-fledged language but kind of a-

Lauren: Space Creole!

Gretchen: Yeah, a Space Pidgin that the astronauts use to speak with each other! I don’t know if anyone’s written a grammar of it, but I really want to see a grammar of Space Pidgin.

Excerpt from Episode 1 of Lingthusiasm: Speaking a single language won’t bring about world peace. Listen to the full episode, read the transcript, or check out the show notes. (via lingthusiasm)

BARRAYAR 

(via suspected-spinozist)

I think the real interesting thing is when people get past one of our last dates for the apocalypse – ‘cause there aren’t really any more after this, any good ones, convincing ones. The horrible realization that we actually have to keep going, that maybe the world isn’t going to end, is going to strike home. And that’s the real scary thing. What if it doesn’t end? Then we actually have to start dealing with it and doing things and making it work.

Grant Morrison on December 22, 2012 in Our Sentence is Up: Seeing Grant Morrison’s The Invisibles

I have seen this movie denounced as a fourteen-year-old girl’s space fantasy filmed on a nearly two-hundred-million dollar budget. Well, I can see how people would think that. But even if I grant the point, the result is firmly within the mainstream of science fiction, sharing themes and ideas with several Hugo-winning works. In any case, the film is a pleasant change from the usual SF movie fare: a fourteen-year-old boy’s space fantasies filmed on a nearly two-hundred-million dollar budget.

A very on-point assessment of Jupiter Ascending by James Davis Nicoll (via fuckyeahjupiterascending)

My literature classes didn’t help. My professors stressed the importance of approaching a text with detachment, with a critical gaze rather than an emotional one. There wasn’t a place in academia for gushing or ranting. There wasn’t room to simply say, “I loved this and I don’t know why.” One had to use academic jargon. One had to be methodical and thorough. It was like listening to a song and wanting so badly to get up and dance, but instead of dancing, you have to sit there and think about why those sounds made you want to dance and consider the exact mechanics behind the formula of a danceable song. And I didn’t want to fucking do that. I just wanted to dance. I just wanted to read. I just wanted to write. I didn’t want to deconstruct lines of poetry or do a close reading of Faulkner’s usage of semicolons.

Jenny Zhang‘The Quiet Importance of Angst-y Art’Rookie. (via ablogwithaview)

I think the main reason the ocean has such a draw is that it doesn’t give a shit. How’s that for mystical? The ocean doesn’t give a shit about you or your problems. It doesn’t care about your rent, relationships, work deadlines, or mean people on the internet. And it is huge as hell. If you’re at the right beach you can stand in front of something that not only fills the entirety of your periphery and from your feet to forever out in front of you, but also doesn’t give a damn about you one bit.

To quote Herman Melville, the ocean is dispassionate as fuck.

Mike Rugnetta, Reasonably Sound #27: Peace and White Noise (via alwaysalreadyangry)

I think the main reason the ocean has such a draw is that it doesn’t give a shit. How’s that for mystical? The ocean doesn’t give a shit about you or your problems. It doesn’t care about your rent, relationships, work deadlines, or mean people on the internet. And it is huge as hell. If you’re at the right beach you can stand in front of something that not only fills the entirety of your periphery and from your feet to forever out in front of you, but also doesn’t give a damn about you one bit.

To quote Herman Melville, the ocean is dispassionate as fuck.

Mike Rugnetta, Reasonably Sound #27: Peace and White Noise (via alwaysalreadyangry)

‘It is, it’s one of the greatest parts you’ll ever play as an actress. Except it’s the reverse of Hamlet because he spends three hours worrying and does nothing, whereas Medea takes an hour and 15, massacres the whole fucking stage and walks off. But it’s great because she uses every shred of femininity that she has to do it, and she also has the complexity of guilt.’

Helen McCrory, answering the question “Is Medea a bit like a female Hamlet?” (via notabuddhist)

No, people don’t come to Marvel movies for personal life subplots, no.

Anthony Mackie, failing to realize that a significant portion of the Marvel fandom would kill for a “the Avengers go grocery shopping” series

image

(via shanology)

That’s why we write fanfic.

(via pinkpandorafrog)

Despite being a work of fanfiction in the most literal sense of the term, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies isn’t quite a labor of love. The book actually originated from an editor going through a list of classic literary titles and matching them to genre buzzword characters like ninjas, zombies and pirates. This editor then called Seth Grahame-Smith to write the book, inserting zombie references into Jane Austen’s text.
 
It feels a little silly to criticize a zombie movie on its treatment of Jane Austen characterization, a detail that won’t matter to most viewers. But in the context of two centuries of Pride & Prejudice fandom, it’s worth mentioning.
 
Along with the Sherlock Holmes stories, Pride & Prejudice (and Jane Austen in general) is probably the longest-running literary fandom in the modern sense of the term. Fans have been analyzing the novel for 200 years, and there are dozens of published sequels and spinoffs. Crucially, this community of Austen fans has always been predominantly female and with a few exceptions like P.D. James’s Death Comes to Pemberley, it rarely receives mainstream recognition. Meanwhile Pride and Prejudice and Zombies won immediate commercial success.

What Pride and Prejudice and Zombies tells us about fanfic and Hollywood