?

Log in

No account? Create an account
 
 
20 October 2007 @ 05:38 pm
174: C'mon, Get Happy  
First and foremost: do any of you have a digital camera you really love? A source of digital camera purchasing advice you really trust? A link to the camera you wish you had? Please tell me. We are purchasing a digital camera, but thus far my attempts to make active steps towards the purchase have followed this process:
  1. Open camera-vending store in tab. (Recommendations for online camera stores also gratefully accepted, by the way.)
  2. Stare at cameras for a while.
  3. Say, "There are really LOTS of camera of in this world. Lots and lots."
  4. Close tab.
Too many choices! Head explodey! Halp!

Okay, and now in recommendations: I had the week from hell. No, really, it sucked in so very many ways - not every way it could have sucked, no, but each day was a new and festive cavalcade of minor and major disaster. I reached the end of the week in a shellshocked state, prone to crying at, well, pretty much anything. In this state, only vids can avail. So today I'm recommending four vids that have made me happy at the end of my awful, awful week.

The One That Proves That, When It Comes to Emo, Gerard Way Has Nothing on Spike. Or on the Bee Gees, Oddly Enough. Tragedy, by dualbunny. Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Here's the first thing you need to know about this vid: it is absolute proof that auction winners can use their purchasing power for evil. laurashapiro, jarrow, and heresluck won dualbunny in the VVC auction, and they decided to have her vid the most evil song in the world. Scientific determination of the song's evilness was made in this very household; testing showed that people exposed to it just once sang it regularly for upwards of a week afterward, sometimes in public, no matter what efforts were made to stop. Repeated exposure resulted in seriously unfortunate dancing by the helpless victims of this song's mind control powers. EVIL, I tell you.

But what better for Spike than an emo, evil song? None, I would submit to you. Plus, this is the ultimate summary of Spike's journey, his character, his very personhood. (Vamphood? I don't know. Things get complicated when you're talking about people who are technically dead.) Every time I see this vid, I grow more convinced that this is precisely the song Joss Whedon had stuck in his head when he created Spike. It would explain so much.

And this vid makes me very happy. It is impossible to feel sorry for yourself when gazing at Spike's WOE set to DISCO.

The One with the Best-Ever Use of a Basketball Bounce. You Can Call Me Al, by sdwolfpup. Due South.

I will be honest with you. I hadn't previously recommended this because I was convinced that every fan on earth had watched it. And that was right and good and just, and I was pleased. This is a vid that everyone needs. It is gorgeous and hopeful and it fits the characters (both Rays and Fraser, in case anyone was worried about someone being left out) and the show so very well. It's distilled love in vid form. I turn to it whenever I am down and need to be reminded of the good things in this world.

So I was merrily going along, assuming everyone had this essence o' love in their lives. And then I discovered that a friend of mine - a close personal friend who I will not name here because after all public shaming is counterproductive - had not seen this vid. At all. Despite loving the song AND the show. And I was sorrowful and downcast, as I'm sure you can imagine. I tried to put things right for my friend ("DOWNLOAD THIS," I said, "OR I WILL BE FORCED TO COME OVER THERE WITH A BASEBALL BAT" - sometimes you have to be direct about these things), but then I had a horrible thought: what if there is another person in that situation? A fan of vids or due South or just, you know, wonderful things, who has not seen this vid? That would be even more of a tragedy than Spike, I tell you. So now I am recommending it, doing my bit to bring us into a better, happier, more loving world. A world, in short, where everyone regularly watches this vid.

So, hey, no pressure, but if you don't watch this right now, you're standing in the way of world peace. I just thought you should know.

The One in Which Rodney McKay Cain't Say No. Do I Need to Say More to Get You to Download It? I Would Hope Not. Atlantis!, by rache, aka wickedwords, and Sandy, aka sherrold. Stargate: Atlantis. (Note: Imeem and download links available there.)

First, let me just mention that while I am normally a fan of musicals, I have a tragic allergy to Oklahoma! No, not the whole "no legs, no jokes, no chance" thing, just - I like corn, and I like cheese, but I am not so much a fan of corny cheese on stage. (It's possible that I was just too young for Oklahoma! when I saw it. You know how they say if you feed a kid certain foods at too young an age, you increase the chances that the kid will be allergic to said foods? Well. I suspect that that's what happened to me with the corn and cheese fest, pretty much. I'm lucky I didn't develop an allergy to the entire Midwest.)

Except. It turns out that when rache and Sandy do Oklahoma! SGA-style, I am suddenly and totally in love. Or, okay, to be more precise, I'm laughing helplessly. (But it is loving, sincere, and earnest laughter. Honestly.) You really would not think that SGA had a perfect one-to-one translation with Oklahoma! (And let me just say - thanks to Helene Hanff I know that that exclamation point has been irritating everyone since before the show's premiere, and right now I guess it's my turn to wish it dead. I don't want to put random exclamation points in the middle of sentences anymore. Bad punctuation. No biscuit.), but apparently it does. Seriously, it's amazing. And did I mention funny? Also, it turns out there's a reference to fan fiction right in the musical. It's awesome.

Given that this vid was inspired by Rumble, by astolat and cesperanza, another vid in which a musical is perfectly mapped onto SGA, I have to wonder if you could do, like, SGA x A Chorus Line. SGA x Sweeney Todd. ...Oh dear god. I need to stop thinking about these things right now.

The One That Makes Biplane Fighting Look Like Ballet. Cathain, by Jill, aka klia. Flyboys. (Note: This vid is password-protected, but it takes only one password to get all the vids of Jill, Kathy, Kay, and Lynn, and I heartily recommend them all, so, seriously, get the password. You will get much shiny in return!)

I have a strange, abiding, and intense obsession with the WWI fighter pilots (It's, yeah. It's kind of sad. These things just take a person sometimes.), so when I saw this vid at VVC I sat bolt upright and watched very alertly. I suspect my mouth may have been hanging open slightly, although I hope no one noticed. I was certainly totally entranced. Months later, I still have that reaction. Whenever I watch this vid, pretty much. Because there is nothing like watching planes dance to Irish music (at least, I think that's Irish; feel free to correct me if I'm wrong) to make a person happy, I find.

Yes. Planes dance. It is awesome beyond anything. And, okay, if you are deeply peculiar and thus unattracted to the concept of dancing planes, let me add that there are also characters in this vid, with a remarkably well-cut slashy story. And a lion. Really, this vid has everything you could possibly want.

In terms of sheer rewatching, this is one of my top three vids from VVC 2007, and there's such a good reason for that: it's gorgeous, gorgeously edited, matching movement to music in a way that would totally make my heart sing even if there were not WWI planes involved. It is entrancing, and it is lovely, and I love it dearly. It makes me deeply happy. I cannot recommend it strongly enough.
 
 
 
duckbunny: due South RayK & Fraserwoolly_socks on October 21st, 2007 12:50 am (UTC)
Re DS vid: oh no, never assume that every fan has seen something! There will always be slowpokes like me who haven't! I always miss stuff. Thanks for reccing it!
Tarnish notte the majesty of my TOWER of HATS: fandom licks thingsmeresy on October 21st, 2007 12:57 am (UTC)
I had not seen it either!

Some people are so fired . . .
(no subject) - woolly_socks on October 21st, 2007 01:32 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on October 21st, 2007 12:59 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - woolly_socks on October 21st, 2007 01:32 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - spiffikins on October 21st, 2007 04:50 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - starfishchick on October 22nd, 2007 02:49 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(Deleted comment)
tried to eat the safe banana: TFV dogtagsthefourthvine on October 21st, 2007 01:07 am (UTC)
Here is what I know about cameras and photography:

.

So. Yeah. I just had to google "DSLR" to figure out what that was. (I have now learned something! Yay!) I think I'm probably more of a point and shoot that I can carry around in my pocket kind of girl, on account of I have no clue why a person might want to change out lenses, or when, or how. Also, the list of specs on the D200 made me kind of dizzy. (What I'm hoping to do with this camera: take pictures. Of dogs. Also probably people. ...Maybe other things, too; I assume you develop the urge to take more photos once you have a camera.) I'm a total camera n00b, basically.

But now I have a useful site for reviews and a store. I am one step closer to potentially owning a camera! Also, I know what a DSLR is. Thank you!
(no subject) - imkalena on October 21st, 2007 05:59 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - imkalena on October 21st, 2007 05:45 am (UTC) (Expand)
nestra on October 21st, 2007 12:55 am (UTC)
I think I used this site. It may not help you narrow things down, but if you get a few models in mind, they'll probably have a review.

I would also suggest, if possible, looking at the actual camera, rather than buying it online. Or prior to buying it online. Then you can test things like "how heavy is this?" and "can I see the picture I have taken on the screen?" and "how hard is it to change between modes?"
nestra on October 21st, 2007 12:56 am (UTC)
And just to make my comments completely redundant, I agree about B&H. We've bought from them before too.
(no subject) - thefourthvine on October 21st, 2007 01:10 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - nestra on October 21st, 2007 01:11 am (UTC) (Expand)
laurashapiro on October 21st, 2007 12:57 am (UTC)
Yay, Tragedy! Not to mention You Can Call Me. Some of my favorite vids evah are recced in this post. Whee, happy-making vids! ::twirls you::
tried to eat the safe banana: Vidsthefourthvine on October 21st, 2007 01:11 am (UTC)
I cannot believe you made dualbunny vid that song. YOU HAVE GREAT DEPTHS OF EVIL.

...It's an amazingly awesome vid, though. So I must love you despite your evil.

*is twirled*
(no subject) - jarrow on October 21st, 2007 01:30 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - laurashapiro on October 21st, 2007 03:34 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Swanswan: makes me dream tallswanswan on October 21st, 2007 01:02 am (UTC)
I had not seen that Call Me Al video! And I love the song, the show, and now THE WORLD. Thank you for recommending it! And I'm sorry you had a crappy week. Onwards and upwards! *nods*
tried to eat the safe banana: Vidsthefourthvine on October 21st, 2007 01:12 am (UTC)
Does that vid not make everything better? Seriously, it puts a shiny gloss on the whole world.

And thank you for the good wishes. I could totally use them.
LadyStarlight: Howdy Johnladystarlightsj on October 21st, 2007 01:13 am (UTC)
That Oklahoma vid was great! (And somewhat disturbingly, I seem to know a lot of the songs...)

I have a Canon FinePix A330 that I like quite a bit. It's pretty much just a point and shoot, but it will zoom in and it takes nice pictures. Downloading the pix to my computer is also very very easy. The only thing I don't like (and this might be solved if I, oh, read the manual) is that if I turn off the flash, the negating the wobbly effect is lost and I need to brace my arms on something to take a picture that isn't blurry.

Good luck camera hunting!
tried to eat the safe banana: TFV bluethefourthvine on October 21st, 2007 01:57 am (UTC)
That Oklahoma vid was great!

Is it not wonderful? It makes me all happy inside.

And somewhat disturbingly, I seem to know a lot of the songs...

Oh, no, don't worry about that. Everyone knows a lot of the Oklahoma songs. I think they beam them into our heads from space.

Good luck camera hunting!

Thank you for the recommendation and the good wishes. (Um. ...I'm going to need them.)
shayheyredshayheyred on October 21st, 2007 01:14 am (UTC)
Sony Cyber Shot. Easy, big view screen, impossible to take a bad picture.
tried to eat the safe banana: TFV umbrellathefourthvine on October 21st, 2007 01:57 am (UTC)
Excellent. Thank you!
Imaginary Researcher: Rob and Laura - aureliapriscushannahrorlove on October 21st, 2007 01:16 am (UTC)
More Paul Simon songs should be made into vids.
tried to eat the safe banana: Vidsthefourthvine on October 21st, 2007 01:55 am (UTC)
You have seen The Boy in the Bubble, right? Because that's another!
(no subject) - hannahrorlove on October 21st, 2007 02:02 am (UTC) (Expand)
kassrachel on October 21st, 2007 01:24 am (UTC)
I use a Canon PowerShot S410 which is a few years old now, and I totally love it.

Also? I had never seen "Atlantis!" -- and now I am dying with laughter. So thank you for that rec. Glee!
nestra on October 21st, 2007 01:41 am (UTC)
Kass! How had you not seen that?

You have seen "Stress", right? And cesperanza's vids? And fan_eunice's "Running Down a Dream"?
(no subject) - kassrachel on October 21st, 2007 01:43 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on October 21st, 2007 01:59 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - kassrachel on October 21st, 2007 02:05 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on October 21st, 2007 02:57 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on October 21st, 2007 02:58 am (UTC) (Expand)
on sateda, i was an accountantminervacat on October 21st, 2007 01:37 am (UTC)
i am crazy about my nikon coolpix L3; they do not make that particular model anymore, but i would highly recommend anything in the coolpix family (i think my father, who bought his over the summer, has an ... L10? L8? SOMETHING WITH A BIGGER NUMBER). for a tiny little point and shoot -- it fits in my back pocket with ROOM TO SPARE -- it takes really spectacular photos. and th coolpix cameras have tons of features, but if you don't want to use those features, they're also really easy to point at, say, a fat cat rolling around on the floor with a stuffed football, and just click the button and the photos are great.
tried to eat the safe banana: TFV lettersthefourthvine on October 21st, 2007 03:00 am (UTC)
Ooo, yay! Good to know, and it seems like I'm hearing many nice things about Nikon. (Also, if I get a Coolpix now, does that mean I will have a bigger number than your father? This could get competitive!)

they're also really easy to point at, say, a fat cat rolling around on the floor with a stuffed football, and just click the button and the photos are great.

This is precisely what I want to do, except not with a cat (allergic!) and not with a football (don't have one!). But you know what I mean.
nestra on October 21st, 2007 01:43 am (UTC)
I have to wonder if you could do, like, SGA x A Chorus Line. SGA x Sweeney Todd. ...Oh dear god. I need to stop thinking about these things right now.

Yeah, I've had that conversation. Twice.
tried to eat the safe banana: OMG RUN!thefourthvine on October 21st, 2007 03:01 am (UTC)
OMG, did I miss those chat transcripts or just forget about them? Also, WHERE IS THE MUSIC MAN AU?

*pines tragically*
(no subject) - nestra on October 21st, 2007 02:01 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on October 21st, 2007 02:18 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on October 21st, 2007 03:02 am (UTC) (Expand)
plum_muffinplum_muffin on October 21st, 2007 01:55 am (UTC)
I would highly recommend a Canon of any sort as I've had three of them (upgrades - never because one broke) and I love how simple the interface is to use.

If you already have a different device that uses some sort of removeable storage (Compact Flash, memory stick, SD cards) you might want to narrow down your search by what cameras use that storage type. For example, both my PDA and my camera use the Compact Flash and so I can swap cards between them and if I need the extra memory for either device, there is a good chance there will be some extra left over on the other device's card.
tried to eat the safe banana: TFV dogtagsthefourthvine on October 21st, 2007 03:05 am (UTC)
Thank you for the recommendation, and, oh, that is an excellent point about the memory. I have no idea what cameras come with - I have seriously never inspected one with any kind of view to purchase before, and in fact never thought I might ever WANT a camera - so it never occurred to me you could pick your storage medium. Fascinating!

*makes frantic notes*
plus one skeletondelurker on October 21st, 2007 01:56 am (UTC)
Too many choices! Head explodey! Halp!
That is my reaction exactly. So overwhelming! I can't give you any specific advice, but here are some general tips I've picked up:

When camera buying, you should try and find a camera that has a viewfinder (is that what they're called? You know, those little window things you look through to line up your shot) as well as a screen, because it's often very hard to see the screen in direct sunlight, which makes taking photos a touch tricky.

Also, I suggest paying attention to how you're going to cart it around - do you want to fit it in a bag or pocket easily, for example? If so, you might want something smaller rather than larger.

And you want to pay attention to the storage used for the pictures. Most of the time you'll want to buy a bigger memory card than the one that comes with the camera, because the ones that come included are tiny and you run out of space in no time flat. Pay attention to the batteries as well - how long do they last? How do you recharge them? Can you buy a spare, if they're not standard AAs or the like? (I recommend buying a spare. Nothing more useless than a digital camera with a flat battery.)

And finally, when you do get a camera and you're taking photos of people, line up the shot so that their heads are at the top of the frame rather than in the middle. This is the easiest way to take good pictures of people. :)
tried to eat the safe banana: Daisythefourthvine on October 21st, 2007 02:28 pm (UTC)
These are excellent tips, thank you. I'm making notes. Camera-buying: maybe not as impossible as it looks at first glance?

Also, size, storage, and batteries: I can see that these would be very important things. In that way, it's sort of like buying a laptop, actually. Maybe if I pretend I'm buying a laptop, this whole process will become less threatening? Worth a try.

This is the easiest way to take good pictures of people.

This is very good to know, although I think my problems with photo-taking are more basic than this. (Like, I tend to put my thumb into the picture. Or just take pictures of my thumb. A lot.) Still, this will be something to remember the next time a tourist asks me to take a photo and there's no one around to hand the task off to. (I cringe in terror when tourists do this. CRINGE.)
plus one skeletondelurker on October 21st, 2007 01:57 am (UTC)
Also - eee! New vids! Shiny!
tried to eat the safe banana: Vidsthefourthvine on October 21st, 2007 02:28 pm (UTC)
They are shiny indeed. *pats them lovingly*
Katheryn: Herculestallulah71 on October 21st, 2007 02:32 am (UTC)
I kinda like Oklahoma!, except for the whole Rod Steiger part. Of course, I am a Gordon MacRae(who?) fan.

Also, regarding your Yuletide letter, I actually still have a 45 of Rick Springfield's lesser known hit "Don't Talk to Strangers". If I'm remembering correctly, the sleeve has a picture of him wearing some sort of jumpsuit or mechanic's uniform. I also still have a 45 of Pablo Cruise's "Love Will Find a Way" and that very famous question turned song "Who Shot JR?". That's right, I'm sitting on an ebay, well, whatever might be the opposite of goldmine.

It is nice to have our favorite vids to watch on those rotten days. Thanks for sharing.
tried to eat the safe banana: HtLJ Porkulesthefourthvine on October 21st, 2007 02:35 pm (UTC)
I kinda like Oklahoma!

*stares at you*

That's okay. No, really. I cherish your specialness.

I actually still have a 45 of Rick Springfield's lesser known hit "Don't Talk to Strangers".

I haven't heard this one, and, um. Is it just me or is that kind of a creepy title?

If I'm remembering correctly, the sleeve has a picture of him wearing some sort of jumpsuit or mechanic's uniform.

Now I am very very very scared. It's starting to sound like that one David Hasslehoff music video where he plays an incredibly disturbing date rapist. With a car. (I think it was sdwolfpup who linked me to that, but fortunately protective amnesia has set in to a certain extent.)

I also still have a 45 of Pablo Cruise's "Love Will Find a Way" and that very famous question turned song "Who Shot JR?".

Wow. I'm impressed. Also a little worried, but that's fine. (Pablo Cruise? Who Shot JR? Um.)

It is nice to have our favorite vids to watch on those rotten days.

It really is. They are like little slices of happiness when things go bad. Yay vids!