April 14th, 2008

Shoulder Mount

Reverting to maiden name after death or divorce

Setting: Japan, early 1980s

I have a character, a middle-aged Japanese woman, whose husband is absent for some reason or another (and has been for some time). I'm unsure of whether to have them have divorced quite some time ago (shortly after the birth of her children, so around 20-25 years ago) or to have him have died (same time, 20-25 years ago).

She and her two children (now adults) have the same last name--we'll say Tanaka. My question is: how likely would she be to have kept her husband's name in either situation?

If he died, I'm thinking she'd keep his name (so, remain Tanaka, instead of reverting to her maiden name), but I really have no idea about how this works in Western society even, let alone Japanese society some 20 years ago.

If they divorced (and how popular was divorce 20 years ago in Japan even? Is that even feasible?) would she go back to her maiden name?

I'm thinking the children would keep their name as their father's, but that could be off as well.

Search terms: Japan divorce name change, Japan divorce maiden name (most of what I found was too archaic), Japan widow name change

Abortion clinics in Cardiff

I've tried goggling this under several different headings and still haven't found clear answer.
Terms Goggled:
Cardiff abortion clinics
Abortions in Cardiff
abortions clinics in Wales

If a woman living in Cardiff wanted an abortion in the first or second month would she be able to get on in Wales or would she have to go into London for one if she wanted to use a private clinic?

I'm not asking about legality of abortions but availability of clinics.

I don't want to assume it was like in the states were you can just of to your local planned parent hood.

Its for a Torchwood fic (John Hart/Gwen) if anyone is wondering.

Edit: Yes, okay my google-fu failed me like whoa and I phrased my question badly. I wasn't asking about legality, I'm making my question more clear. Sorry for the confusion.
Black Kitty

selecting love poems for love letters

A male character is writing love letters to another male, and is including love poems in the letters.  So far only W.B.Yeat's poetry has been used, but I'd like to include more poets/poems.  The poems need not not be homo-erotic or even especially erotic in content - just well-written love poetry without too many gender-specific terms.

The setting in in the UK in the late '80s.

I've tried googling "love poetry/poems" and "erotic poetry/poems" and am getting nowhere with these broad search terms.  Any suggestions on poets or poems (preferably well-known and writing in English), appropriate search terms or useful web-sites?

Thank you!  Am getting brilliant suggestions!  Rilke, Whitman and a Scottish poet unknown to me, Edwin Morgan, are proving especially inspired choices.  Ginsberg also seems a popular suggestion, so will explore Ginsberg next!  And (*embarrassed*), Shakespeare's sonnets - can't believe I didn't think of that one myself!  Thanks all!

ETA:  Thanks to everyone - you've been absolutely brilliant! 
I've got 20 wonderful poems selected, and am still exploring more authors (after the Uni library tomorrow)!  Poets I've never heard of, poets I'd never read before and old favorites - all the suggestions have been inspired.
Thank you, thank you!

hiroshima surviors - ageing effects on children???

Time/place: present day, with repercussions from the WW2 bombings of Hiroshima/Nagasaki

searched: Wikipedia, google - 'Hiroshima' 'survivor' 'aging/ageing' 'children' 'maturity' in various combinations, but I can only find articles about cancer rates among survivors and their children.

I want to know whether a child survivor of Fat Man or Little Boy would have a retarded maturation process, or even be 'frozen' at a certain age. I'm trying to confirm or deny something I vaguely remember from a book when I was in primary school. It's about a little girl who survives the bombing of Hiroshima or Nagasaki, and a particular line that really stuck with me reads 'she grew old, but she never grew up. It was because of the bomb, her mother said'.

Basically, my character is a kind of undead/angel mix, who died when the bomb hit. Everyone in this afterlife ages slowly, at different rates depending on where they are assigned to live, but in the time since the bomb he's only aged about two or three years - say, beginning to end of middle school - when everyone else in his sector who's been around that long has aged anywhere from five to ten. He's worried that he'll be stuck at 13 forever, or take several centuries to finish puberty. If the child survivors of the bomb had problems with ageing, it would add an extra fillip of worry, as in this world, some types of injury carry on into the afterlife.

EDIT: thanks to fancypony! The book I was thinking of was 'Hiroshima No Pika'. And while I don't think I quite got across what I really wanted to know, I figured it out from the answers, anyway. Thanks to everyone!
Sweet smile

Car mechanic doing . . . stuff

This is one of those instances where I can't search for something properly because I have no clue how to describe it in a way as to get results.

Essentially, I want the ubiquitous "car mechanic goes under the car on the little wheeled board thingy and does . . . something" scene. But I have no clue what the mechanic would be doing since I know nothing of cars, or what the little wheeled board thingy is called. Could someone please tell me (on both counts)?

If it matters, the mechanic in question doesn't have a full shop set up. All his gear is makeshift, found, etc, and he's working in an old warehouse, so he doesn't have the huge shiny lift to raise a car up completely like I've seen in a few of the mechanic pictures.

chemicals commonly found in a school laboratory stock cupboard

I'm trying to write a story set in modern day Britain that involves a member of staff in a secondary (high) school using a chemical or substance commonly found in a chemistry lab stock cupboard to kill somebody.

I've Googled variations on poisonous chemicals in school, toxic chemicals, school laboratory stock, school chemicals, list of chemicals in school etc, and I can't find what I'm looking for.

I'm obviously not a chemist, and I know that schools wouldn't have anything so dangerous that a fraction of a gram could kill - but does anybody know if the average chemistry department stock cupboard would have something that would be lethal, in a big enough dose? Or something that could be combined with something else? I'm aware that basic things can be lethal if you have too much of them, but I'm really looking for something that is a bit unusual, or exotic.

I'm sorry this is a bit vague, but I'm still in the plot development stage at the moment. Thanks to anybody that can help!