October 21st, 2006

Cross, Duo Maxwell

Lutheran Things

I'm looking for details on what makes a church a Lutheran church; not the theology, that's a big detail that I can easily research in the library. What I'm looking for are the little things, like what the main committees are called, and what sort of food people serve at church potlucks. Are there any liturgical things that Lutherans do that other churches don't? Do Lutherans keep any liturgical seasons that other churches don’t?

I'm especially interested in hearing from progressive Lutherans, but more conservative Lutherans are welcome to add their 2 cents.

In the interest of full disclosure, this is for a Sci-Fi story where the Episcopal Church, the United Methodist Church, and the ELCA merged into one church (the Evangelical Methodist Episcopal Church or EMEC) during the 24th Century; I want things that can be plausible remnants of Lutheran culture and practices.

Edit: Wow, thanks for all the info everyone! I'm saving this thread to my memories. I'm really greatful to everyone who contributed.

Making sergeant in late 1700's

I've tried googling, searching Wikipedia, and asking on a writing message board, and so far, no one has been able to help me out. So I'm hoping someone here can. So here it is!

I've got a character who enlisted as a drummer in the British army at the age of twelve somewhere around 1775. I want him to raise through the ranks rather quickly through manipulating his fellow soldiers and sucking up to the officers. So anyway, how old should he be when he makes sergeant?

And, erm, if that's way too specific or confusing, what would the average age of a sergeant in the late 1700's have been?

Thanks a lot, guys! Your help will be appreciated!

Questions about collapsed lung and silk

I mostly want to know if this is plausible, though I do have a few questions too.

Okay, I have a character that is shot in the chest with an arrow. It enters the sidea little bit under the armpit; it does go through the ribs but does not puncture the lung. But it does go into the lung cavity so when the arrow is removed the lung collapses because of air pressure. To stop the bleeding and to keep more air from getting into the cavity hot tar is used to quickly seal and cauterized the wound. The hot tar is the part that I’m not sure is possible.

Other than having trouble breathing and pain would there be any other symptoms while she recovers? Would her collapsed lung refill all at once or would this be a slow process? Is there an estimated time for her to make a full recovery, or even how long it would take for her to be up and moving?

Also this is slightly related, is the myth true that “silk is so tough that it [can] actually used as very light armor, although its special use (the big secret) was to stop arrow penetration into the body. The silk would stop an arrow from penetrating far enough into the body to be lethal; and the arrow could then be pulled out of the wound by tugging on the unbroken silk. The added advantage to this is that there would be no contact between the arrowhead and the interior of the body; thus it reduces the incidence of infected wounds.” (Quoted from Wiki).

Sorry if I’m asking too many questions, and thanks in advance.

Renting Villas in Southern Europe

Dear wonderful community,

You're my last hope. I'm looking for personal anecdotes - good or bad - regarding the renting of holiday villas in Southern Europe. They can be from the point of view of the holiday makers, property owners or the agents. I have information on how to rent a villa, advice from various consumer guides, and more ads than I know what to do with. It's unfortunately been quite difficult to find stories of personal experience and they're needed to help me round out the piece.

Any comments and links are appreciated. Thank you!

ETA: As always, this community comes through and saves the day. Thank you everyone, you've all been very helpful!

Hitch-hiking, youth shelters, and day labor

Hello, I've got a character who is hitch-hiking across the country and is, by definition at least, a runaway. Google's giving me lots of hitch-hiking tips, but no real time info; the rest of the stuff is being kind of elusive too.

1) How long would it take for him to hitch-hike from rural Kentucky to the San Francisco Bay Area? He looks like a fairly "good kid," is 17, and is travelling alone; how much would that impact the likelihood of drivers to pick him up?

2) He also only has about $200 to his name. Once he gets to the Bay Area (he'll probably want to stay in either San Francisco proper or the peninsula), what kind of youth shelters are available? I googled and found a few, but more specifically, I want to know what his options would be once he got there. He leaves Kentucky in June, and has a place to stay starting in late September--what kind of time limit do these shelters place on him? Also, like I said, he is a "good kid" and wants to work and get out of any shelter ASAP--what are his options? What is realistic?

3) Another option I've considered is having him do day labor in the central valley. How much would he be likely to earn doing this for two months, and what sort of crops are in the fields in June, July, and August? Where could he stay before he got onto a farm?

Thanks a bunch!
  • deeble

Knife wound

Google has failed me -- or more likely, I have failed to Google properly. Help me, little_details, you are my only hope.

My character, a woman in her 20s, is stabbed in the back with a knife. I want her to recover without major lingering issues, but I also need the injury to be clearly life-threatening and to involve enough blood loss that she goes into shock and loses consciousness shortly before she is carted into the emergency room. (There's five, perhaps ten minutes tops between the stabbing and her arrival at the hospital.) Would this pass the smell test for anyone knowledgeable about traumatic wounds? Could anyone recommend changes if it wouldn't? (I'm not entirely opposed to moving the wound location, though back would work best for plot reasons.)

If she was already in a great deal of pain and a bit of shock, in part due to multiple fractures in one elbow, is it realistic that she wouldn't immediately realize she had been stabbed? (Not that she wouldn't feel anything, but rather that she would think, "For Pete's sake why does my back hurt -- don't I have enough to deal with already?")

And finally, what could she expect after surgery? I imagine her waking up a few times so groggily that she isn't entirely aware of her surroundings, but how long would it take for her to have a rational conversation? Three days? Four? How long before she would likely be released? Once released, would she be able to go about her life, albeit gingerly for a while, or would she need special care of any sort?

Thank you all. The posts here are never dull, and I've learned a lot from the answers.
Teragramm Tara

obstetric emergency, delivery by layperson

Hello. I tried googling "obstetric emergency" and got a lot of emergencies that would be handled in a delivery room or elsewhere in a hospital setting, but that won't work for my story. So I googled "obstetric emergency" AND "delivery by nonprofessional" but the info I got is so technical that I'm unable to sift out what a layman (me!, and most of my gentle readers) would know as a life-threatening obstetric emergency where it's not possible to get the mother to a hospital. In the chapter, a person skilled in midwifery will try, and fail, to save both the mother and fetus. What might some conceivable scenarios be, told to me in layman's terms, that I can use in my story, please? Thank you.