For today's image, I looked around for pics of Rowling's excellent shoes, but no joy. Instead, I discovered that Heliotrope is not only a pretty purple flower but another name for Bloodstone, marking a fortuitous connection between today's items and another lovely and wonderful thing in its own right. Image from Wishing Well.
Stuff may suck in spots. In some spots, sucking in an existentially profound way beyond the ability of the word "sucks" to convey. However, that's true every day, and doesn't mean there aren't yet wonders to celebrate. Some that occurred to me:
1) I forgot to mention that for the reading J.K. Rowling wore a cute sleeveless black dress (sort of Audrey/Givenchy cut on top, A-line flared skirt) with a large, black-stoned cocktail ring and just fabulous silver snake-motif shoes. They were high-heeled, Grecian-ish sandals with a thin strap high around the ankle and another across the toe. Connecting these from bottom to top was a modeled snake T-strap that slightly curved as it slithered up the vamp of the foot, and upon reaching the ankle strap, coiled around the outside to dangle its crystal-studded head and flick its tongue back toward the heel. Fantastico!
2) It took until now to stretch the fibrin of blood clots between microscopes capable of seeing these protein fibers which are 1,000 times thinner than a human hair. Now as we seek better treatments for heart disease and strokes, we've learned that incredibly, human blood clots are stretchier than rubber bands and stronger than spiders' silk.
3) Thousands of Sri Lankans saw colored rays emitting from a Buddha. When engineers (and others) revealed the natural cause of the optical illusion, the monks were happy to have the visions debunked. If you've got the genuine yak butter of enlightenment, what do you need with Oleo?
4) FantasyBookspot has launched its long-awaited e-zine, Heliotrope, complete with articles by Jeff VanderMeer and R. Scott Bakker along with other reviews and original fiction. I am proud of these guys for creating another high-quality, paying market for speculative goodness. I believe it's open to every genre we review, so crime/horror/comic authors get your stuff submitted. The checks will clear!