April 28th, 2007

death certificate w/o body, memories before 6 y/o

Hi,

This story is taking place only fifteen or so years in the future in the United States (MA, if it's relevant), so I think going by present-day standards would be okay for this.

I have a character who has died in some kind of explosive... thing... (still deciding on this, a terroristic bombing or a plane crash or something of the sort). This brings me to two questions:

1) This character is supposed to have had two children; one was 6 when she died and one was 4. How much could the 6 year old reasonably remember about her, do you think? Same question about the 4 year old. How much would they remember about her personality and memories of things they did together and whatever else? That sort of thing..

2) I'm trying to write a scene about someone finding the death certificate issued for this woman and reading it. Since I'm going with 'died in major explode-y event,' I'm also going with 'her remains could not be found.' I researched a little and found out that a death certificate can be issued to someone who has died in some kind of disaster wherein it can be reasonably confirmed that the person was present, but the remains cannot be found (like 9/11 or Titanic or something). It's apparently called 'death in absentia.'

Anyway, To help myself figure out what a death certificate would say so that it can be described in my story, I printed out a death certificate from MA and am using it as a visual reference.

My question is: I'm filling this thing out and I don't know what would be written for someone who did not have a body found. The form asks about the disposition of the body, which doesn't happen to.. exist. Also, it asks for cause of death in two parts: immediate cause of death, and then asks about injuries that may have been involved. I don't think 'plane crash/bombing/act of God' works for cause of death. Or does it? I'm so confused!!

Sorry if this is a bit fuzzy, I haven't slept right in a week. :\

"Ki'in Spirits" ?

Setting: Irrelevant

I have a kids' book called "Favorite Scary Stories," and in it is a story called "The Ki'in Spirits," about a set of spirits that, during the day, hide in dark places, and at night come out in stolen bodies and hunt frogs, which they eat. I'm trying to find more information about this legend. The book says "this is a favorite story among the K'mu refugees of Cambodia," but I've not heard of it anywhere outside said book, and Dr. Internets isn't yieilding me any kind of further info.

What I've Googled/Wiki'd/etc'd: cambodia ki'in spirits, cambodia spirits reeds frogs, spirits live in reeds eat frogs, live in reeds eat frogs, ki'in live in reeds eat frogs, ki'in eat frogs, kiin eat frogs, the ki'in spirits, "the ki'in spirits"

Any kind of info you guys could give me on the subject I'd appreciate.
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sundown rituals in space

I'm writing a story set on a space station, and I'm trying to figure out how certain religious rituals would work. I know some Jewish (and Islamic?) rituals either begin or end at sundown, but what happens when "sundown" doesn't really apply?

I'm not sure how to *start* searching for this- googling "Jewish rituals in space" didn't help much. I also tried looking for information on what you'd do in Antarctica, what with the six-month night and all, but no dice.

edit: thank you all so much! I have a much better idea of how to deal with this now- you guys rock.

Being born blind, and Canadian minor emancipation

Wow, what an awesome community. I hope there's help for me.

1. I have a character who is supposed to have been totally blind his entire life, but I can't find out any plausible reasons for being born blind that would work. I've found plenty of causes for a young baby losing his eyesight, even just an hour after birth, and plenty of cases of being born partially blind, but that's not what I want, I think it would be best if this character has never seen a thing in his life. I have found cases of babies whose optic nerves did not develop, but those kids also have developmental disabilities. I know it's possible to be born totally blind and not have other disabilities; just the other day there was a newspaper article about a young man like that, but it didn't say what the reason for his blindness was. Can anyone give me a plausible defect that would result in a baby being born totally blind, but not have other disabilities?

2. My comic is set in Canada, and this same character is supposed to be 17 and having lived on his own since he was 15. Except I'm getting nervous about the plausibility of this because my research is not coming up with any evidence of minor emancipation laws in Canada. I've never known anyone personally who has done it, but I find it really hard to believe that it's impossible for a minor to be allowed to live on his own in Canada. I already tried the government's justice website and came up empty. Is it maybe called something else besides "emancipation"? Can anyone point me in the right direction?

I don't really care about my comic being super-realistic (heck, there's an alien in it!!!), but I do want it to appear plausible and believable. Any help is much appreciated, thanks.

Therian Greetings

Hey there!

I'm working on a novel about a therianthropy wolf pack, and have run into a bit of a tight spot. I want to keep the characters as true-to-life as possible, and, not knowing anyone in real life who identifies as a therian, I'm turning to you lot for help, since you've been fantastic in the past.

Cut for length of the question -- on Therian GreetingsCollapse )

Any help, on either search terms or answers would be greatly appreciated.

Edit: The group that I am waiting for approval on is therianthropy, so unfortunately I'll have to wait until I get okay-ed on there before I can ask them. It's been a little under a week, so approval should be soon, I hope. ^^

Thanks!
_Reggie_
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