December 27th, 2005

French cultural attache information

Hello :)

I guess that imagination is the thing to get me most into tight spots these days. I tried google, but either I am not doing it right, or this is not the stuff most populer in the Net:

Thing is, I need passably correct-sounding information on the procedures one goes through in order to become the French cultural attache somewhere. Do you need to be French? To have lived in France x years? Will a French citizenship suffice? Can you get the place via helpful connections or the procedures (again, what are they at least approximately?) are tailored to make that impossible? And if you become one, what will you be supposed to do - would it be a busy work? A pleasant one? Would it require much public appearances? Would it keep you at odd hours? Would you have much paperwork (if any)?

I need it for background information for one chief character, and it would be fantastic if someone can help me. Thanks in advance.

Russian-Japanese Name

I've just decided that my main character's current name isn't suited to her so I need a bit of help.

She's the child of a native-born Japanese and a native-born Russian, in the future, and I'm having a helluva time coming up with a first name.

Any ideas?

shrapnel question

This is rather difficult to explain, since the magic rules are rather specific to the RP I am in, but it's got to do with Holy and Unholy magic. The character in question is an angel, so obviously one who is weak to Unholy magic.

He is supposed to have a piece of Unholy shrapnel in his body that can't be removed with severe complications. Although it rather depends on the size of the bloody thing, it's suppose to weaken him as the years go past.

Now the question: where would it be located so that it can't, at any cost, be removed, without severe complications? It really is not supposed to be removed at all and the piece of shrapnel is cursed with Unholy magic, so he's going to be weak as hell. (And we are not on Earth, but in a realm that is similar to those of the Ancient Greeks, so no surgery either.)

If this isn't clear, feel free to ask me to elaborate.

Gunshot wound that'll leave victim serious but stable

Character A is shot by Character B. Ideally, I would like Character A:
- to be able to survive for an hour or two after the incident
- to be able to speak
- to not be in huge amounts of pain
However, for thematic reasons, I want Character A to be able to see that the wound is 'serious' i.e. to feel that he's not going to live very long. I'd rather not have him get shot in the arm or leg for this reason - because he could rationalise that it was going to be okay. I'd like him to get shot in the torso somewhere, but where (if anywhere) would satisfy my criteria above?
I'm not sure whether there's a diagram on the Internet of 'effects of getting shot in different places' (I've tried Googling several different combinations of words and can't find anything ^_^) so any help here would be appreciated.
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German vs. American idioms

So the story that I ask almost all of my questions for is narrated by a boy who comes from a place that is the equivalent of his world's Germany. However, at a young age (16, specifically) he runs away from it to the other major power which is equivalent to America.

It's first person, and the way it's written implies that he originally wrote it in his native language and it has been translated to English. Of course, this leaves room for different idioms. He doesn't use many himself (probably because I don't know any good German ones), but he enjoys hearing the "American" ones that people use because they're so different from what his people say.

My German textbook in high school had these really cool random little sections on idioms, but unfortunately I can't remember any of them. It gave the German phrase, the direct translation (which usually didn't make sense) and the Americanized translation. That's the way I'd like my responses, if you could.

So, I'd like to know some German idioms and their translations. Things like "thick as thieves," "cat got your tongue," "you look like death warmed over," "it's a bitch" (as in, "life's a bitch" but not necessarily using life as the subject). Those are specific ones that he quotes as unfamiliar or interesting in the story so far. If you have others they're certainly much appreciated.

Also, I'd like you to point out any random notions you may have of anything that he might be likely to get confused over when he hears the English and the direct German doesn't make sense to him.

Just in case it may be important, he was raised entirely on German, learning English in his school for two years (and we all know how proficient high school languages makes you). When he first immigrates there, he has a very low-level mastery of it (2nd or 3rd grade at best) but he learns and improves on it quickly. I feel he's still very likely to get confused about slang, however, but I know no decent slang for him to get confused by. Hence this post.

Mixing Alcohol, Cough Syrup, and Oxycontin

So my Google-fu only tells me what happens if you mix alcohol with cough syrup and oxycontin separately. So I was wondering, anyone here know what kind of short-term effects and long-term effects could happen from mixing alcohol, cough syrup, and oxycontin all at once? The first time, the character had one bottle of beer and one "swallow" (he didn't measure the dose) of cough syrup and one 10mg tablet of oxycontin, and the second time he had a few screwdrivers, another "swallow" of cough syrup, and a 10mg tablet of oxycontin. I get that this would at least make you really, really tired, but it also seems like it would cause some pretty damn serious side effects.

Also, the character is currently suffering from pneumocystis pneumonia (an AIDS-defining illness), but he doesn't know that's the source of his cough, and hasn't been taking HIV medication.

Consolidated Edison (ConEd) utility trucks, New York City

Really stupid, really minor.

However. What colour are the Consolidated Edison utility (electricity) trucks in NYC? I know the Illuminating Company (in OH) are --well it's supposed to be bright-- yellow. So, what colour are the ConEd trucks in NYC? Also do the techs --repairmen, whatever-- wear a special overall/uniform beyond a hard hat and one of those reflective vest things?

Help?
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