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Subject:Find me!
Time:01:33 pm
Old friends, if you're looking for me, I'm at eliza(dot)osborn(at)gmail(dot)com. Or Eliza Witt Osborn on FB. Or @elizaosborn on Twitter!
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Subject:Announcement & Advice
Time:02:37 pm
Current Mood:blankblank
I don't know who around here is interested, but I thought I'd post just the same. Verity Reagan Osborn came into the world Thursday night...I'm not sure when because I was under general anesthesia for a C-section when it all happened. Specifics like the first time I held her are more than sketchy; I just plain old don't remember when it was. It's all good, however, because she's the most amazing person ever and I'm in awe every time I think about her.

For future reference, avoid C-sections if at all possible. I'm grateful that my doctor decided to do it, because if not I probably wouldn't have her (my active labor was 12 hours long and not getting anywhere), but recovery is not easy. Just my experience, take it or leave it.

Epidurals are wonderful - don't fear them at all - and if you do have to go the Cesarean route, percoset will be your best friend for at least the first few days.

We wanted the baby's first movie to be Serenity, but I don't think we'll be taking her to the theatre quite so soon. Yes, we're already looking for a sitter to cover us Friday night for the premiere.

PicturesCollapse )
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Subject:For old time's sake
Time:02:37 pm
Current Mood:nostalgicnostalgic
came across this in my yahoo inbox, sitting amidst many other reminisce-y things. thought i'd toss it up again.


For Teenagers Nationwide, It's New York and It's 1904

May 26, 2002
By TARA BAHRAMPOUR






Most of the young women involved agree that the frenzy all started because there were so many cute teenage boys
singing and dancing in one place.

The boys were the cast of the 1992 Disney film "Newsies," a live-action musical inspired by the 1899 strike by newsboys against two of New York's most powerful newspapers, Joseph Pulitzer's World and William Randolph Hearst's Journal.

The movie, a kind of David and Goliath meets "West Side Story" with a dash of the Bowery Boys, was also abox-office flop. But for hundreds of young women in their teens and early 20's, the film struck a chord, spawning a cult following that spans the United States and extends even to Europe. Participants meet online, where they have set up virtual "lodging houses" for the characters, mostlyorphaned teenagers, who are based on the film.

The first lodging house, in Lower Manhattan, was established in early 1999 by Maria Hanton, a "Newsies" fan who felt isolated when she found no like-minded friends near her home in Sarasota, Fla. Within weeks, that lodging house filled up with newsie characters created by fans who had watched the movie more times than they could count.

New houses soon appeared all over their virtual Manhattan, and when they filled up, they spread to Brooklyn and Queens. Their inhabitants, characters with names like Piggy Postlethwaite, Fingers Mulcahy and Giggles Malloy, speak in a New York accent heavy on dese, youse and heah.

The mostly female fans devise elaborate plots for their cast, which now has 637 characters (some share a creator) and includes newsgirls, even though the film's newsies were all boys. Time in the "newsie-verse" corresponds roughly with real time. It is now 1904 there, and a virtual theater, pharmacy, restaurant, dress shop and library have sprung up on the groups' shared Web sites to go along with the houses.

To open a location (there are currently 26), a potential house leader must carefully research a neighborhood's history, including whether that area was likely to have had a lodging house at the turn of the 20th century. "We're very, very big on historical accuracy," said Ms. Hanton, 19, who lives in Salem, Mass., but still runs a virtual location called Bistro Lucio in Midtown Manhattan. "I did a lot of research into opium dens and dance halls, because that's what my place is."

Elizabeth Osborn, 23, of Columbiana, Ohio, has developed a deep and quirky expertise on New York.

"I have a dozen period New York City maps on my computer, and bookmarks to things such as the histories of zippers, toothpaste and elevators," she said. Her library includes publications like "Crime Extra: 300 Years of Crime in North America" (the newsie-verse is well acquainted with crime and mayhem) and late 1800's volumes of Harper's Magazine. As the fans immersed themselves in New York history and lore, they thought more deeply about why the film had affected them. Some feel that the era's characters give them access to a basic human condition they feel is missing in modern life.

"Their everyday existence seemed to have so much more importance than everything I saw around me," Ms. Hanton said. "We seem so superficial. The fight to find food and keep clothes on your back, it's a very raw existence, and something about it just got to me. Like, I have all these things, but what if I didn't?"

Most characters are teenagers, and stories involve struggles for independence, and peers who can be bothsupportive and backstabbing. Some have escaped to the streets from stultifying homes. In one plot, Adrianne, who has run away to avoid her debutante ball, gazes at the street kids who walk by: "They seemed so happy, despite their obvious poverty. And here she was, rich and miserable."

Adrianne is befriended by a newsboy and welcomed into a house. But not everyone has an easy time. There are turf wars between neighborhoods, expulsions from houses and even rapes and murders (since some fans are as young as 12, nothing is ever more graphic than an "R" rating).

Sara Shandler, author of "Ophelia Speaks" (HarperCollins, 1999), a book about adolescent girls' writing, said the Web sites' success did not surprise her. "Teenage girls are particularly drawn to creative writing," she said. "A very important part of adolescence is having a certain amount of self-absorption, not in a bad way, but having to do with finding out who you are and putting it down on paper."

For some, it took the newsie-verse to spark that passion. "Amazingly, I didn't even start writing until I found the writing circle," said Kyla Sterling, 18, of Hilton, N.Y. It didn't even seem like something people did in today's society." Now, she plans to study creative writing in college.

Sarah Allen, 21, of Salt Lake City, added: "This may have started out as a bunch of teeny-boppers writing cheesy stories with bad characters and even worse dialogue, but it's grown into something much more than that. I've learned a great deal about not only myself as a person, but also how to really, truly write from the heart."

By now, the stories' links to the movie are tenuous; and the fans' original shared obsession has blossomed into friendships that are often, as Ms. Allen put it, "as close to me as my best `real' friends." Most have never met, though in 1999 around 30 of them converged on New York, where they visited the Lower East Side Tenement Museum, the statue of Horace Greeley in City Hall Park and other newsie-related sites.

Some have outgrown the site. Ms. Hanton thought she had, but found she missed it. "It gives you an outlet for your emotions," she said. "At the most unstable points of my life, when I was the most distressed, I could go in and create utter havoc with my characters and find a way to resolve it."

------

I don't seem to have the rest of it (I think there was more), and now you have to buy article archives for about $3 a pop, here: http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=F70E12F73D5F0C758EDDAC0894DA404482

Anyway, just got thrown into thinking about everything. You people - since most people who're on my friends list and vice versa - shaped me in many ways. I like to think that I grew up with you, at least in a few aspects of life, and while there was some seriously bad times with nearly everyone, I think about you guys (particularly everyone I met while Harlem and Brooklyn had their heydays) fondly. It's good to see posts from many of you to let me know you're doing okay.

Since it's been an anniversary from when we found out about Beth, I'd kind of like to ask if anyone has heard from Alicia lately - I'm wondering how she's been handling things. And if anyone wants to update on their present situation, either tap me here with a comment and do so or somehow let me know. I'd say IM me, but I really haven't used it in over a year.

Mostly, I love you guys. Still. Even the ones I tend to want to skin alive more than hang out with. *flashes a grin* You're all important to me, even now. And publicly I'd like to offer a broad - yes, I realize it's impersonal, but it's a start - apology to people I've pushed aside, frustrated, dropped or pissed off. I think we've all grown up a ton since the NV days, but I also think we remember nearly everything that was hurtful. Even if it was unintentional or just a way to have fun.

I'm exhausted from work so I'd best be gone for now. Hope to hear from you guys who know me soon. Much love.

Ash
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Subject:Christmas Greetings
Time:07:39 pm
Just a quick note to say Merry Christmas to you all.I'm in the Carolinas until Sunday, so I probably won't recieve email - I'm not just being rude and not responding.

Take care, everyone. Love you all.

-Ash
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Current Music:Sarah McLachlan - Witness
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Subject:Three things.
Time:03:58 pm
Current Mood:weirdweird
1) Daze just made me incredibly happy with her Christmas card. Hit the spot, girl. I needed that more than I can say. *just hugs so, so much* Thank you. *is all teary now*

and 2) The Union has an incredible way of making things way, way more difficult than they need be. I haven't said anything to a list because I have no place in the Union anymore. Other people kinda need to decide if they're in or out, you know? We don't hear from you for a year, and the moment someone has an interesting idea, everyone jumps on it as if they're involved or otherwise concerned. I have no place there anymore, nor do several of us. We need to accept that reality. If we want back in so badly, we just need to say, point blank, "Hey, I'm back" and get our shit on and do something - lead the houses we're given, keep activity up, and bust our butts on stuff. And yes, I do know something about butt busting for the Union, as do several other of the people who may read this do. I got out because I couldn't handle all the shit that was given to me daily by a limited few people, but that doesn't mean other people who've disassociated couldn't be incredible assets. A few people who've perked up at the idea of a reset just need to decide where they stand and effin' stand there, not fade away when they get bored or distracted. And some things would be unbelievably unfair to the handful of people who try to keep things going at expense to them. Yes, the reset was a cool idea, and doable, but I don't know if it's "the answer". If people already in the Union were gonna be active, they'd be active, reset or not. This time last year we had several incredibly active houses and establishments. I was updating stories all the time. You can't blame inactivity on time elapsed, is all I'm sayin'. It was cool, because as I grew up, my characters did, too. They went from street rats to cops or students or bar owners, like they did in real life. That was awesome. And either way, Meg should be able to do the Fire Department thing, or at least be given a direct answer after a vote, like everyone else is given. She's as valuable as anyone else. And Allyson had a heck of a point. It would make all the development of people's characters superfluous if we're not very careful - a waste of years and years of work, even. And the OC grabbing, like Imp was saying? I'd hate to have to put up with it. *grins*

3) I got Faith a'cantering day before yesterday, all good and under saddle. It's a big step. Don't know if anyone who may read this has ever retrained an OTTB before, but man, it felt good. She's strong. Very, very strong mare I've got there. Picked up the correct leads immediately and everything.

I won't say that's all I have to say, 'cause it's not, but that's the brunt of it. But I'm tired and have a class soon, so I should go. *hugs all and passes around hot cocoa*
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Current Music:It Was A Very Good Year - Frank Sinatra
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Time:11:47 am
Current Mood:productive
Has it really been a month since I updated last? Shoot, man. I suck. I'd say I'll give a "real update" later, but...well. That's worthless. Jack and I've been going through some of those predictable marital issues, and between that and the whole holiday thing, I've been rather busy. Planning on going home on Tuesday next. Melissa got back yesterday, so she'll be housesitting when we go, which should be good. Been doing some work on the house - the bathroom project that got started, like, a month ago still isn't done. Jack hasn't had time to stain the wood since we stripped it, and we still have more stripping to do. I've been sick, had the laryngitis thing that's been going around, but I'm better now. *shrugs* Don't know what else to say. Things are pretty quiet, per the norm. Doing the RotK thing Saturday, which kind of sucks, but it's the only time we'll all be able to go together - we being Joe, Cyn, Lissa, Kevin, Kimmy, Jack and myself. I'm gonna...go. Yeah. Later, people.

like an epidemic, it's all been going aroundCollapse )
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Subject:Fifty million Elvis fans can't be wrong.
Time:12:39 am
'Kay, so this is about 40+ minutes late, but today was my third wedding anniversary. *grins some* And life's about three times better than it was when I got married, so I'm interested in finding out about how good things will be in twelve years or so. *smiles*

So yeah - things have been kind of busy around here, what with holidays and projects and so on going on. We got the bathroom mostly done, and it's painted and we have some of the new fixtures ready. We've pretty much decided our next project, when we get the money, will be the foyer and the first and second floor halls, which all pretty much have to mesh together. It's gonna be one of our biggest projects, but it needs to be done. I'm kinda grateful that Jack's had some slow days. He gets bored and has to do manly home improvement things, and since he's got a pretty darn good taste going (for a straight guy), I can trust him not to make me miserable. *quirks a grin*

Still working on the story. There are some major plot holes, some gaping problems, and hardly anything is finished. I told Jack the other day that it was good, though, because it's past the skeleton stage, and hardly any of my stories get past that stage. This one's more anorexic than anything - it's got some body, but I'm pretty sure it's going to look good with more meat on it. *nods* That's the way I'm looking at it, at least. The characters are just now starting to come together. Some I've had in my head for a while, and others are still being created. The latter is the harder to write, while the former is the harder to edit. I sat down today and started going through the relationships between all of the major players, or, at least, the ones with the most screen time. The hardest part is that since it's on two different planes, I have to balance out the characters for each of the lines and I can't mesh them all together. And, as I've started to realize, they'd all be pretty nifty together. But that just won't work.

I think this is the first time I've had a non-romantic subplot or six. That's the thing that's coolest to me. Bad thing is I'll be all out of ideas after I get this thing done, you know? That's it. All my creativity's gonna be spent. It's cool, though. The sooner I get the writing bug out of me, the better.

So that's what's been up here lately. Nothing too exciting, but enough to have been keeping me too busy. Well, that and classes and so on. Leaving tomorrow morning for Columbus, which isn't gonna be too fun, seeing how two vehicles were reportedly fired at on our route down 71 this week, one woman getting killed. *shakes her head* I don't wanna be sniper victim, dammit. Anyway, we're staying the night there, then heading back up sometime on Friday, stopping at Grandma and Grandpa's to do the appeasing visit (we're on Grandma's blacklist at the moment 'cause we didn't go to Heidi's wedding a few weeks ago, but hell, we weren't even invited, you know?). We've got Joe and Cynthia with us Friday night, so I don't know if I'll be on at all, but who knows. *smiles*

Anyway, I should go. *is kinda tired* Just wanted to drop in and let people know what's been up. My LJ updating software got eaten or something, which sucks, and I've been too lazy to download a new copy.

Happy thanksgiving, y'all! Much love to everyone out there.
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Time:09:55 pm
I did it.
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Time:10:48 pm
There's just something about a microfilm machine that makes me feel cool. That's how I know I'm a bona fide nerd.

2K words left. This makes Ash feel good.

Class in the morning, so I'm gonna go. *hugs all tons and will be around more next week, is sure of it*
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Subject:Mystery solved.
Time:07:15 pm
'Kay, so I know what's up with my email. *nods* Our domain ran out and no one sent us a bill or reminder to renew it, so...yeah. I should have my mail back within a day or so, hopefully. So if anyone needs me, drop me a line here or something. *nods* Just not at my nycfacts.cjb.net or joycell.nu addresses, really.

Other news - well. Came home from my class tonight, and Jack had dropped by a certain store this afternoon and got me some stuff. *was hugely amused* *pats him* Particularly knowing how awkward it must've been for 'im, you know? I don't know if the fashion show last night gave him some ideas or what. But hey, I got the newish Sting CD out of it, too. *is just so amused* I'd randomly remarked about how I wanted it, even though, to be honest, I didn't care either way and was just talking to talk, and...yeah.

Loving Angel. And I like Tru's potential guy. Finally, a good-lookin' male on the show. *nods approvingly*
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[icon] Ash
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