I'm Laurie Mann a feminist geek who maintains (and has moved) many Web sites. I'm currently doing a lot of volunteer work for this year's Worldcon and may be looking for some free lance writing/Web gigs later in the year. I've done a little movie extra work, and frequently write about movies online, particularly those made in the Pittsburgh area. I was in the Bach Choir of Pittsburgh from 1993 until 2004, then rejoined in 2007 (but not in the spring 2010 concert for Carmina Burana...sigh...due to some throat problems).
Jim and I had a very enjoyable 30th anniversary in 2007. Our daughter, Leslie, does Web/database support work for an international shipping company.
And, only 22 years late, I graduated from college in April 2001.
I like collecting interesting quotes.
Here are relatively recent photos of my family and me (probably time to upload new photos!):
|Jim Mann, 5/11||Leslie Mann, 5/11||Laurie Mann, 9/11|
|Jim Mann, 12/01||Leslie Mann, 3/02||Laurie Mann, 4/01|
I love the pseudo-psychological, pseudo-tests that tell you "what you are" based on a series of questions.
It turns out my daughter loves these tests too.
And while I don't believe in astrology, I was fascinated by the details in my birth chart.
My husband and I made our long-planned trip to England in March of 2000. Ironically, we turned around and went again in December of 2001 (to use up a bunch of frequent flier points and attend our first foreign conference). Jim then went to Winchester for a business meeting on his own in the spring of 2002. We visited both Ireland and Scotland in 2005. We also did a quicky tour of SF/Napa before going to ConJose in 2002.
1999 was an extraordinarily busy year, between conventions, a hectic work schedule (and "oh the horror" - working for a company that purchased software for a major project that was buggier than most beta software), and managing the hotel and other local aspects of the Nebula Award Banquet that was in Pittsburgh last May. But, at least I learned XML and a little XSL, two languages which will be in wide use on the Web in the future. (2010: well, this has been taking a little longer than I anticipated! ;->)
Immediately after Boskone in 1999, I went to New York City for five days (two as a tourist, three as a person taking a class). I saw two Broadway Shows (Ragtime and Death of a Salesman) and ate at a couple of pricey but interesting Indian places and an inexpensive and excellent Thai place. While I wouldn't want to live in New York City, I enjoyed my visit there. We've been back twice since then because we liked it so much.
I read an excellent book by David Brin on privacy in the computer age called The Transparent Society. I highly recommend The Sex Side of Life: Mary Ware Dennett's Pioneering Battle for Birth Control and Sex Education, an extraodinarily interesting book about this largely unsung American feminist who helped to topple the Comstock laws.
Jim and I have had a long-time relationship with the Star Wars movies. In 1977, we got married days before the first movie was released. Back in '97, I hit 40 while watching the re-release of Star Wars (and so did a bunch of other people that year). We attended a special showing of The Phantom Menace early in the morning of our 22nd wedding anniversary. And the latest installment came out days before our 25th anniversary.
While I generally like the Pittsburgh area, there are some things about this area I don't like, and the Gammage case pointed out that bigotry is still alive and well in the Pittsburgh area. Also, a minority of cops in the area behave as if there is a "devine right of police" or something, and that they don't have to account to anyone, especially not their "employers," the taxpayers of Allegheny County. The fact that the KKK has considered this area a hot recruiting zone isn't a good sign either.
On a lighter topic, I met Patrick Stewart in person in '96, and can attest to the fact that the man has an even better voice in person than on TV. In addition to meeting him at the local Borders, we all went to see him perform with the Pittsburgh Symphony. He performed Shakespearean soliloquies, and the orchestra played pieces like "Overture to a Midsummer Night's Dream" in between. Periodically Stewart stars in a one-man show of A Christmas Carol, a piece he immortalized on audio.
Canadian Provinces I've Visited
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Again, I saw much of Canada by train in 1968, though I've been to Quebec many times and to Ontario at least once in this millennium.
European Countries I've Visited
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I visited Germany, Austria, Italy and Switzerland as part of a multi-state high school chorus in 1974, and have been to the British Isles and Ireland a few times since 2000. We have high hopes to go to London, Dublin, Cardiff and maybe even Paris in the summer of 2014.
"...what would bug a guy from the Taliban more than seeing a gay woman in a suit surrounded by Jews?"
Ellen Degeneres, on hosting the Emmys in November 2001.
"I would like to believe in God, but I just believe in Billy Wilder."
Fernando Trueba, director of Belle Epoque, 1993 Best Foreign-Language Film Oscar winner
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