November 19th, 2009

Let me sleep

Gender roles in primitive society

A friend of mine told me something that seems like it could make an awesome story. Apparently, in some primitive societies, you could choose whether you would be a man or woman once you came of age, and that's how everyone would treat you. He's a history major, so I know he's not completely making this up. But I'd like to fact check it and get the details, make sure he wasn't mistaken or misremembering.

The problem is, I have no idea where to begin Googling for information. I can find plenty on gender roles, mind you, just not this specifically. I don't know what century he's talking about or which societies. If there's anyone else out there who knows anything about this subject, could you help me out with some search terms? I am completely stumped.

Thanks in advance.
Birthday Cake

Magical or mythological wood

I'm working on a contra-Twilight fic (contra in the sense that I'm not in favor of the series, but I've gotten past the "OMG BURN IT WITH FIRE!!111" phase of despising it), and considering the way vampirism works in the Meyer-verse (staking them apparently doesn't do much good), the thought crossed my mind that maybe a stake made from the wood of a magical tree might work. Maybe even something that can bring a Meyer-pire back to life before doing them in. But... I haven't been coming up with a whole lot of ideas: Wikipedia has a whole slew of fantastical, magical or mythological plants, but not a whole lot on magical trees, and Googling "magic trees" just comes up with ...those little green car air fresheners (though in another story, it might be funny to have someone nail a Meyer-pire with one of those :: Regards her green tea oddly, wondering who spiked it with something that's inducing giddiness, sniffs it suspiciously :: ).
Maxfield Parrish

Details regarding popular musicians/boy bands

Hi everyone,

I have several questions relating to popular musicians, and I’m hoping you all can fill in the gaps between the archives here and what I’ve managed to glean from blogs and YouTube videos. Three of my original characters are members of a boy band based in Romania in the present day/recent past. They’ve been together about three years, and have been on the road for the past two years to promote their first album. During the tour, the group’s popularity has taken off in Romania and they are known at the level of say, the Jonas Brothers, the Backstreet Boys or N’Sync.

Google searches… well, there’s a lot of questions here, and I haven’t been keeping close track. The key words from each question, definitely. I’ve found a lot of conflicting information on various blogs and such, and I’m not sure if this represents variation in the industry or sketchy sources. If anyone knows of good sources for this type of information, please toss it at me!

I’ll group my questions by theme, for ease of reading. Also, my terminology may not be perfect, and I would appreciate corrections. :)

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Thanks much for any help you can offer me!

Prince's seat in court?

I'm trying to find out where a prince would sit in a royal court.

Setting is undetermined - I'm trying to keep it a little ambiguous, so any information from any age would be great. Specifically, I'm creating a section of a graphic novel adaptation of Hamlet for my English final, and I'm blocking out I.2, but I'm obsessing over this one little detail...

I tried searching various combinations of royal court prince seats etc... failed pretty miserably. Google-fu left me some months ago. I'm also in a teensy bit of a hurry to get the information, so I was hoping that you guys would be more helpful in a much more timely fashion...

Thank you!