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Inhuman Swill : Page 85
Why is my blog called Inhuman Swill? Because you can unscramble the pieces to make William Shunn.

Happy birthday, Robert Burns!

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Yesterday's Times had an interesting and often amusing article about how haggis in America has mutated into something rather tastier than one can gets in Scotland, thanks in part to the fact that FDA regulations and other factors prevent the use of much of the offal that traditionally gets used as ingredients.

The article was strange to see when Laura pointed it out to me, because just Tuesday night we had met Paul and Kim for dinner and scotch—lots of it—at what purports to be the only Scottish restaurant and pub in the city, St. Andrews on 44th Street near Times Square. We had a fabulous time, and the haggis was very tasty indeed. (Not that Laura and I are afraid of traditional haggis, which we have eaten in Scotland and more or less enjoyed.) So was the other delicious food, which for me and Paul both included an entree of fresh brook trout stuffed with crab meat and oatmeal, in a whisky-maple sauce. Dessert for Laura and me was the cranachan, which is essentially whisky and whipped cream with berries and oatmeal.

Take note that it was painfully easy to get a table on a Tuesday night.

But while it was the prospect of haggis that drew us all there, it was the amazing scotch selection that had us arrive early and stay late afterward. I mean, 200 whiskies? Please. The bar at St. Andrews is our new favorite place in the world.

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Hugo nominating ballot

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I keep meaning to remind eligible Hugo nominators (i.e., members of this year's or last year's Worldcon) to keep "Inclination" in mind in the novella category. Asimov's, April/May 2006.

(Hey, [info]paulmelko's novella from the same issue, "The Walls of the Universe," isn't bad either, if you must nominate something else.)

What else did I nominate? Let's see...

Novels: Crystal Rain by Tobias S. Buckell, Rainbows End by Vernor Vinge, Red Lightning by John Varley, The Road by Cormac McCarthy.

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Rollick this

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If I never again hear the word "rollicking" employed to describe a novel, it will be too soon.

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The description of today's Woot! is very funny. I am on the twelfth floor.

[permanent product link]

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ShunnCast #35

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Epidode #35 of "ShunnCast" is now available, in which Bill, against his better judgment, accompanies a runaway Elder Finn to the airport, where he experiments with phrases you must never use whilst frequenting such establishments. In other words, this is the episode you've been waiting for!

http://www.shunn.net/podcast?id=35

See also [info]shunncast.

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Almost snuck that one past, eh?

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What is wrong with the following sentence (from a New York Times article by Manohla Dargis)?

Still, it proved that a studio division could make money, win awards, attract talent and excite the audience, which is why Miramax and all it helped wrought is one of the best things to happen to Hollywood since the end of the old studio system.
Or am I, like Jennifer Garner trying to tell Conan O'Brien that snuck is not a word, stumbling over some once-bad English that quietly gained acceptance while grammarians' heads were turned?
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Didn't he ramble!

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Part Two of Amy Brozio-Andrews's interview with yours truly is now available at Absolute Write! This time around we discuss genre, conventions, and technology.

Part One of the interview, which focuses more on writing, revision, and inspiration, is still available as well.

Absolute Write says they don't usually break their interviews into two parts, but apparently I rambled unstoppably way past their word limit!

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This is not a lament—it's a honest question. Where are they? Which ones do you know that I don't?

A friend wrote to ask me what shops in Manhattan have a good large selection of new SF. I had to cop out and tell her the Barnes & Noble at Union Square. For independents, I said I know that St. Mark's Bookshop usually has a decent and interesting if not huge selection of SF. I had to resist the temptation to go on at length about all the great shops that have met their demise here in the past decade, or that have pretty much abandoned the goal of keeping a good supply of SF in stock. (Forbidden Planet, I'm talking to you!)

So, where do you go for SF in book form in Manhattan?

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A very merry Christmas

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A very merry Christmas

When a Christmas gift arrives late, even through no fault of the giver, it really should be, well, this. I have the best brother-in-law ever.

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Self-portrait (with human)

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Self-portrait (with human)

Ella doesn't quite understand the concept of looking at the camera. Not that I'm complaining!

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