Pixel Scroll 10/3 The Red Scroll of Westmarch

(1) Harry Potter fans taking the Warner Bros. Studio Tour in London have been trying to “free” Dobby the house elf by leaving socks beside his display case.

In Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Lucious Malfoy is tricked into freeing Dobby by handing him a sock. (A house elf can only be freed from its service if its master gives it a gift of clothing.)

(2) James H. Burns recounts a memory of 1973, about the Mets clinching the pennant, and his 6th grade teacher, in the Long Island Press.

(3) Joel Achenbach in the Washington Post says, “Don’t worry. Matt Damon won’t get stuck on Mars. NASA can’t get him there”. He explains why it’s highly unlikely that NASA will lead an expedition to Mars in the next 25 years. Two key points: we don’t have a rocket, and NASA has no plans to develop a Martian lander.

(4) A collection of Vince Clarke’s fanwriting, assembled by David Langford, is a free download on the TAFF Ebooks page. More details and the list of contents here.

Vince Clarke Treasury cover

Mike Moorcock approves: “Glad the Vince Clarke book’s out. I mention Vince quite a lot in The Woods of Arcady. Sequel to W.Swarm … As I say in the book, Vince was something of a mentor to me and really helped me. Great bloke.”

(5) Patrick May reviews Dark Orbit:

“Dark Orbit” by Carolyn Ives Gilman tells the story of Saraswati “Sara” Callicot, a researcher who spends her life traveling via lightbeam, and Thora Lassiter, a member of an elite caste who was involved in an uprising of the women on the planet Orem against a male-dominated, Sharia-like government.

(6) Cedar Sanderson’s “A List of Books for Big Girls” at Mad Genius Club, while recommending characters, is also a built-in set of book and story recommendations.

Character! That’s what we want. And inspiring heroes, and damsels who can’t be bothered to be distressed, and the men who respect them… You’ll find all that and more in the list of books below.

I want to thank everyone who helped with suggestions for the lists. I’m not including all of the titles that were given to me, some because I wasn’t looking for YA, and some because I was emphasizing character rather than other features. You will find that I’m listing the books by character name, rather than individual books, as many of these are series. Some of the comments in the list are from the people who gave the recommendations to me (I’ve anonymized the lists since they were collected in private groups). 

(7) I’m always a sucker for those internet list posts and get hooked into clicking through a whole series of pages by sites trying to maximize their ad exposure. I rarely post those here.

An exception I can recommend in the Scroll is complete on one page: “My Favorite Movie Endings of All Time”.

(8) I bet she’s right —

(9) Can’t get it out of my mind. Iphinome’s lyrical comment on File 770.

We built this concom, we built this concom on pixel scroll.

Say you don’t scroll me, or pixelize my face,
Say you can’t lose Hugos with any grace.
Knee deep in the hoopla, sinking in your fight,
Too many puppies, yapping in the night.

Glyer posts a roundup, givin’ us the pixel scroll
Don’t you remember?
We built this concom
We built this concom on pixel scroll.

(10) Larry Correia explains in the beginning of his “Fisking the New York Times’ Modern Man”

See, I have two sons. As a father, it is my duty to point out really stupid shit, so they can avoid becoming goony hipster douche balloons. So boys, this Fisk was written for you.

His target is Brian Lombardi’s “27 Ways to Be a Modern Man”, which is sort of wryly serious and so lends itself to Correia’s mockery.


Even the header is wrong. This article is the opposite of self-help. This is like the instruction guide for how to live life as a sex-free eunuch.  …

  1. The modern man has hardwood flooring. His children can detect his mood from the stamp of his Kenneth Cole oxfords.

Most real men have whatever flooring their wife wanted when they built their house, because we don’t care, because we’re working all day so don’t get to stand on it much. Or they have whatever flooring came with the house when they moved in, and eventually when they can afford to they’ll put in whatever flooring their wife wants, because they don’t care. Some men do care, and they can put in whatever floor they feel like. Good for them. All of those men think this reporter is a douche.

I don’t even know what a Kenneth Cole is. I’m not sure what an oxford is, but from the context I believe it is a type of shoe. As a man who usually wears size 15 Danner boots, this is my Not Impressed Face.

(11) This Day in Non-Science-Fictional History

Debuted on this date in 1961, the first successful TV-show-within-a-TV-show, “The Dick Van Dyke Show.” When Carl Reiner created and starred in the pilot that preceded the hit show, it was not a success. Casting Dick was the one major change that propelled the show into a five-season successful run on CBS.

Also –

In 1955, the children’s TV show Captain Kangaroo with Bob Keeshan in the title role was broadcast for the first time.

(12) Marc Zicree delivers a quick tour of the Science Fiction Exhibit at the LA County Fair — complete with Rod Serling, Jurassic Park, the Back to the Future DeLorean and HAL 9000.

[Thanks to Will R., Martin Morse Wooster, and John King Tarpinian for some of these stories. Title credit goes to File 770 contributing editor of the day ULTRAGOTHA.]

254 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 10/3 The Red Scroll of Westmarch

  1. It’s for an SFF reading list to which a number of people are contributing, using personal knowledge and a bunch of sources. I, being het and woefully clueless about what constitutes good LGBQT fiction (I love sex, but personally don’t care for it to be more than alluded to in my SFF books, since if I’m not the one getting laid, I really don’t want to watch it or read about it), was hoping to contribute by soliciting recommendations from well-SFF-read people who know whereof they speak. So thank you, and thank you Kyra, and thank you to everyone else who’s provided recommendations in those June threads.

    This is actually a little bit of a spoiler for The Watchmaker of Filigree Street, but not a bit one.

    In fact, homosexuality in Victorian England is certainly a theme there. Many reviews rhapsodied about the fact that it is a book about male friendship, and it certainly is that too, but not only.

  2. @Rev Bob

    industrial-strength disbelief suspenders

    Are those sold as lingerie, mens outfitting, workwear or safety products?


    (This moose could possibly do with a couple of sets, depending on the intended application.)

  3. @Cadbury Moose: “Are those sold as lingerie, mens outfitting, workwear or safety products?”

    Yes, indeed. They’re quite versatile.

  4. @Kendall:

    I just finished Shero and left a review at Goodreads. Briefly, though:

    – The third-person narrator’s way too mouthy. Think of Deadpool’s arguing caption boxes. Scrapping that shtick would make the book much better, IMO.
    – Shero is not transgender in the current sense of the word. He wears women’s clothing (in a non-kink way) and prefers “hanging out with the girls” over spending time with male friends. That’s about it. (Oh, and he shaves or otherwise gets rid of his body hair.) He has no interest in passing for female and does not see himself as a woman – which is why I say he’s a cis man. There are a couple of odd parts, though; the book feels in those ways like a first draft where the author is still getting a feel for the character in the first chapters, but hasn’t gone back to smooth out the rough edges.
    – The story’s solid, with Shero’s crossdressing treated authentically. Some people approve, some tolerate, and some dislike it. A doctored photo leads to a plot-driving scandal, and in a way that makes sense. There are a couple of plot holes, but no more so than in most supers fiction.

    Overall, though: good book, looking forward to the sequels. Hopefully, now that the character’s established, those won’t have the rough edges this book does.

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