This year, I decided to treat myself to a subscription to Doctor Who Magazine. That seems reasonable, right? I was very excited about the upcoming series, I like the look of the magazine, it's all fun and stuff.
I decided to get a subscription through Whostore (whostore dot co dot uk), because I thought that they would be, like me, enthusiastic about Doctor Who, treat their customers well, etc.
I was so, so wrong.
I have tried to work with them for the past 7 months to get my subscription up and running, to no avail, so I decided to go public. I'm upset, angry, and I don't want anyone else to go through the misery of what I'm going through. Maybe they'll do right by me because I've gone public, but I've tried to work with them, as you'll see below, and see that I have been treated with awful customer service: silence.
So, here it is. I hate doing this because I believe that I could work things out with people, but this hasn't worked out. I have no idea what I am doing wrong and it has been very frustrating.
Interestingly, in the same time period, I've had an amazing customer support experience relating to Doctor Who items from ThinkGeek. I ordered my Eleventh Doctor sonic screwdriver from them. I received it and realized that it wasn't working, so I requested a replacement. They sent me a mailing label so that I didn't have to pay for the return. I returned the product and I promptly received my replacement...
...which had a wonky screw and I couldn't open the battery compartment to put in the batteries. I wrote them saying that the new sonic they sent me was also not working. AGAIN, they sent me a mailing label and I sent them the screwdriver back and received a beautiful, working sonic soon afterwards.
I cannot praise ThinkGeek enough for their amazing customer support. I bought my Christmas gifts this past year through them and they have gained not just a loyal customer but an enthusiastic one.
I wish I could say the same about the Whostore. So very, very disappointing.
9:40pm: My Transcript Project: S5E2 "The Beast Below", Act 1
I spent an hour and a half this evening on a new project. I've decided, this series, to try my hand transcribing episodes. Ever since "The Eleventh Hour", I've been mildly obsessed with the dialogue. I wrote this at 2:40am on April 4th:
"You know you have a Doctor Who problem when you need to resist the temptation at *checks the clocks* 2:40 in the morning to transcribe the latest episode of Doctor Who. Because you really like the dialogue and want to enjoy it even more."
I read a call out a couple of evenings ago for volunteers to try transcribing the new series and decided to volunteer. I'm actually going to be just one contributor of... I'm not sure how many there are of us, to be honest, but I'm thinking of doing all of them anyway because the each transcriber's "voice" and choices are different and I find that rather fascinating.
I thought I'd share my work this evening. It's only 'the first Act' (the first 10 minutes) of S5E2 and it took me an hour and half, so I expect each episode to take me two or three evenings to get each episode done. I used a set of subtitles already available on the Internet as the basis for the transcript. I then corrected the mistakes in the transcript (a number of missing words, mostly in the Doctor's dialogue which were probably intentionally removed because meaning is still preserved without them), added action and scene descriptions, along with character tone indicators and other incidental sounds they make.
I welcome any constructive criticism, what I should do differently or tweak to make it better.
ETA: Oh, and I'd love to know if you think the Doctor says "Deck 27" or "Deck 207".
12:18pm: Question about "Blink"
So, I've got this question about "Blink" that I sent out on Twitter but since not everyone I know from here is on Twitter, and y'all are so brilliant, I figured I should ask here as well.
Here's the question: What is the moral of "Blink"?
So, yeah, I can't recommend this article to people, especially those who want to dip their toe into Classic Who. I've read much better introductions to Classic Who for New Who people and it's such a shame that those articles will not be as widely read as this io9 article.
Well, Steven Moffat is My Writer. My New Who Writer. I recognize that his style and his characterizations don't suit everyone's tastes, but they Totally Do It for me. And I love how he thinks about Doctor Who. He's not perfect, but the more he talks about the show, the more I feel that he's looking inside my mind and expressing, in so much better words that I ever could, everything I love about it.
The interviewer asks about potential romantic relationship between the Doctor and his companion, given how roughly similar in age and very good looking they are.
"I think the Doctor, while he is the most gentlemanly gentleman in the universe and would always respect such things, I think he's a serial faller-in-love-r. I think he just does. I think he loses his heart a lot. And the truth is he lost both his hearts to the big blue box and none of them stand a chance."
Yes. This. It's not just the TARDIS, but what she represents: it's his home, his longest companion, and the way that he can see everywhere and anywhere. The TARDIS gives him freedom, purpose and meaning. How can that not be his first and greatest love?
Also, it tickles me pink because I'm very much like how he describes the Doctor. A serial faller-in-love-r. But I always return to the big loves of my life. Like Doctor Who.
(He also makes really great observations about children and what they want. I believe he is spot-on.)
So yeah, listen to the interview, it's pretty good (lots of stuff we've heard before, but it is still quite nice). It's added a few more reasons, this observation being the strongest one, as to why Steven Moffat is My Writer.
10:51pm: The Apple Soho Doctor Who Experience
Tonight, I managed to get myself together and to the Apple Soho store in New York City for the "Meet the cast" session, celebrating Doctor Who. Little did I know what a treat I was in for.
4:13pm: Gallifrey One
Well, I planned on writing a "OMG, I'm going to Gally! See y'all tomorrow!" post here tonight.
Instead, I'm writing to note that my flight has been cancelled. I am on hold to figure out what I could do to salvage this.
In a word: CRAP.
ETA: Continental has booked me on a later flight from Newark to LA. A direct flight at 1pm. I'm skeptical that this will be good because the weather is supposed to be at peak nastiness from 9am to 2pm tomorrow.
My biggest worry, to be honest, is my roommate. The room is booked in my name at the moment and I'm concerned that I won't be there when she gets there. Which may be a pretty silly thing to worry about since I could call the hotel and make sure that, if necessary, she could check into the room in my name but keep the reservation on my card. Still, that extra headache makes me all sad.
I've decided that if I'm going to try to use LJ again, I'm going to need to clean my house up. Right now, it's just too overwhelming for me to check regularly, so I'm narrowing it down to my interests and things like that. I'm defriending folks; feel free to defriend me. No hard feelings, just trying to get things manageable again so that I'll be motivated to use LJ again and in the way I want to use LJ.
I'm going to Gallifrey One in a few weeks. I'm so excited! I hope that I meet all of you there (and I hope that I don't experience a bout of crippling shyness; my roommate should help me get over that)!
I'm watching lots of television, movies (going to see Percy Jackson and the Olympians today, romantic, eh?), reading a ton, knitting, and gaming (Dragon Age: Origins, Mass Effect 2, Borderlands, Star Trek: Online, etc).
Life is so, so good. I hope it's good with you too, friends.
9:53pm: Above Suspicion: The Red Dahlia
I am big on procedurals and watch many. There's something fascinating about detectives trying to piece together the clues they discover into a cohesive story. I'm not sure if it is my puzzle-loving nature or what, but I find it appealing. I especially love the personality analysis; because I am completely lacking such behavioral awareness, I like it when a show does it for me even if it is in the context of an entertainment program.
Lynda La Plante's Prime Suspect series ranks up there as a favorite. Great performances, especially one from my favorite actress of all time, Helen Mirren. Great casting across the board, to be honest. There are a number of Prime Suspect cast members whose careers I watch regularly because of that show, including John Bowe and Zöe Wanamaker.
When I heard that Ms. La Plante was doing another series and Kelly Reilly (loved her in A for Andromeda) and Ciarán Hinds (Rome!) were headlining, I jumped to watch Above Suspicion. I loved it! When I spotted that a follow-up series arrived, I decided to definitely check it out.
In short, I enjoyed the new series. It's definitely graphic and I could guess the content from the subtitle, being all-too-familiar with many gruesome murder cases, but worth the two hours and a bit required to see the whole thing... if just to see a guest star that needs to be in more stuff.
In other news, life is being a little crazy. Currently in temporary housing. Medical appointments on the horizon. I've also been called for jury duty. I don't mind the running, running, running, but at the same time I'm looking forward to some quiet time at home.
8:03am: A very short Paul McGann picspam
I got my hands on The Rainbow for a Ravelry's Who Knits? forum and managed to take a few screencaps of Paul McGann. I figured that I should share because, you know, Paul McGann (specifically naked!Paul McGann).
I'm going to see if I can take better caps today or over the weekend. If so, I'll add them.
When I first read this question, it popped into my head with music from the television programme and all:
"Your plastic pal whose fun to be with!"
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy has been part of my cultural vocabulary ever since I was 7. Friday and Saturday nights, the local PBS station would show British television, both science fiction like Doctor Who (Peter Davison, MY Doctor) and Blake's 7 and comedy like Are You Being Served?, Fawlty Towers, and Monty Python's Flying Circus (which, at the time, I didn't care for).
"I think you ought to know, I'm feeling very depressed."
I remember missing the opening moments of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, but I remember the hilarity of the scene in the pub when Ford first tells Arthur that he's not from Guilford after all, but a small planet somewhere in the vicinity of Betelgeuse. The "computer screens" fascinated me, as I thought they were genuine, similar to the screens on my computers (at that age, I owned both an Atari 400 and a Heathkit) and I wondered if there was something like the Guide that I could get for myself. I was hooked. I thought that Ford Prefect was absolutely handsome, Zaphod Beeblebox was at a level of cool that I could never achieve, Trillian was sexiness that I could never achieve, and I was convinced that I could cheer up Marvin, my favorite Paranoid Android!
"Life. Don't talk to me about life."
A few weeks later, I discovered that it was a book series. I was browsing in a Barnes and Noble and spotted the first three books. I convinced my parents to buy it for me and I quickly devoured every line. Douglas Adams became one of my most treasured loves and I've collected all of his books, audios, and games ever since. I even remember playing the Hitchhiker's Guide game as a kid and being frustrated with the mail/babel fish/robot and the tea/no tea puzzles. I've owned the television show with every new phase of format: VHS tape, laserdisk, and it was one of the first DVDs I owned.
"Here I am, brain the size of a planet and they ask me to take you down to the bridge. Call that job satisfaction? 'Cos I don't."
I suppose my love affair really is with Hitchhiker's, but Marvin is such a big part of it. He's at the top of my list of favorite robots, the first that comes to mind, and I still cling to my childish hope that I could make him happy and hoopy.
July's been a really intense month and I've been away from LJ for around the past three weeks, just coming in off and on but not being devoted to reading my flist. I acquired a Bell's Palsy and I've been in and out of doctor's offices and stuff. I'm almost 100% back to a full recovery, although my ear still feels like it's under pressure and my left cheek isn't at 100% full feeling or mobility. Hopefully, I will start physical therapy sometime next week or so and things can get back to normal in August.
My birthday has come and gone, so I'm 33 now and Mike's 40 and we've been kidding around that our bodies decided to really show signs of wear and tear. Hee hee! Thank you for the fabulous birthday greetings, y'all are really great.
I wanted to give a shout out, especially, to my good friend PP. She sent me Five for my Jelly Baby swap. Now, she's given me a little friend to go with him!
We've been spending a lot of time together, along with a number of other fans and friends at Plurk. (Thanks to Ceej who got me into Plurk in the first place.) It's fun and I've made a number of new friends, mostly knitters and friends of knitters. A number of us are into Who too. And speaking of Who...
Those of you out there who know what that means, yay! I am proud to be 1 of 100 and I can't wait until the pictures of all 100 get released.
So, yay, I'm back and hopefully will throw myself back into my flist and friends and all the folks I've missed.
3:09am: Doctor Who Quote Meme
Meme popping up everywhere on my flist: When you see this post, quote from Doctor Who on your LJ.
TRICKSY! My first thought was to post my favorite line from New Who, but I think this time I'll go Classic.
"A man is the sum of his memories, you know - a Time Lord even more so." The Fifth Doctor, The Five Doctors
It's just too difficult to select just one and trying not to repeat what I've already seen. A lot of good quotes in "The Five Doctors" too, especially the one from the Master that everyone knows and loves.
12:00am: I have won the Internets.
So, I'm on Ravelry and there's a Doctor Who forum on there called "Who Knits?" One of our members decided that it was a shame that folks on this side of the pond find it hard to access Jelly Babies, so a swap was born from it. Jelly Baby Swap 2008!
I, lucky me, have a UK import store in my little town, so I happen to be able to be in the "Haz Jelly Babies" category. My swap partner, knowing this, decided to splurge on me because my package was coming from across the country and not across the pond.
She gave me the bestest swap package ever.
The yarn was selected because it reminded her of Tegan's uniform. The roving, my swap partner dyed herself in a "Five" colorway, after his coat. Awesome, yes? But the BEST part about the swap?!
She made me a Five of my own! MY DOCTOR! (Yes, this is a picture of me with my little guy yesterday. My fab sister took the photograph.)