December 4th, 2009

Octopus

I would like to bring you a slightly different query from the normal.

I've tried google, and indeed my local market but can't seem to find an octopus there.

I need to know what a dead octopus looks/feels/squishes like. Yes, really.

I am including the Legend of the Octopus (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legend_of_the_Octopus) in my fic and the main character ends up getting be-octopused and covered in goo.

I need to know how realistically gooey an octopus would be, any sort of help or personal experience with cephalapods would be much appreciated.

Long term scarring or disfigurement from severe beating

Hello, all. I have a character in a roughly late-medieval setting, who I want to be scarred (generally "uglified") via having suffered a brutal beating earlier in life (say, teens to mid-20s). Trouble is...I'm not sure what the exact nature of his scars should be. I'm considering a scar from a scalp laceration, broken nose (pretty standard), and husky voice from larynx trauma. I'd like some injury to one eye (not missing or blinded, though). Hearing loss in one ear would be okay. I'm mainly aiming for stuff that would mess up his face, though. I also don't want any long-term mental impairment (no brain damage).

Knife scars would be easy, but I was aiming more for just blunt trauma (fists, clubs, maybe a bottle). Any idea what sort of injuries he could receive that would have long-lasting effects on his face?

I googled "blunt trauma scars", "disfiguring injuries", "disfiguring beating", and "scars from a beating", as well as general things like "scars". I also reviewed the medical sections from this site on "injuries", "injuries to order", and "head injuries" (found some useful stuff, but not sufficient/specific to my purpose).

Thank you for any thoughts or leads.

Sniffer dogs.

Context: Unbeknownst to them, a group of students adopt a sniffer-dog trained to search out human remains and/or human blood. He's never allowed in the living room, but when he is permitted entry, he always pauses at a particular spot.

This is only a really thin thread of my plot, used to tie together some of the major themes/plot points, so I won't dedicate a huge chunk of my word-count to it... but I do need it to be plausible.

After giving up my search and texting AQA, I found labradors, collies and golden retrievers are the breeds commonly used to sniff out human remains/blood.

When police trained, what are these specific breeds like as pets? Affectionate? Is the above situation likely? Would the dog stop each time, or just once, or not at all without his trainer present?

Setting: Contemporary Cheshire, UK.

Research: I've posted to a few other communities, with no luck, text AQA for the basic info and have Googled various combinations of 'sniffer dog', 'police dog', 'dead bodies', 'blood', 'retired', 'ex-', 'collie', 'labrador' and 'golden retriever'.

Medieval astrology

I have a group of medieval European people who have been sent millions of years back in time by an astrologer-sorcerer. They have almost succeeded in putting together a counter-spell to return them to their present.

My questions:

I came across an incomplete list of auspicious days in the lunar cycle for various undertakings; does anyone have a complete list?

In astrological terms, what combination of visible planets, sun and moon would suggest homecoming to the medieval mind?

Searched:
Warren Kenton: Astrology: The Celestial Mirror
Margaret Wade Labarge: Medieval Travellers
Ian Mortimer: The Time Traveller's Guide to Medieval England (would have been cool if this had had anything helpful in it!)
Reader's Digest: Daily Life in the Age of Chivalry
Keith Thomas: Religion and the Decline of Magic

Google Scholar: combinations of: medieval astrology auspicious lunar homecoming return NOT zodiac NOT constellation

Many thanks!

ETA to clarify

police procedures/chronology

where: USA, Batman-fictionnal town of Blüdhaven (for sanity's sake, I choose to assume Blüdhaven's police (like Gotham's) works like the New York one.), nowadays

searched: Wikipedia (police, police procedure (which is about novels), nypd), google search (police procedure, ten-code, radio-code, police code, textbook police procedure), little_detail (*merge: police procedure,usa: government: law enforcement, gunshot wounds) and ask_a_cop (current page and the two previous ones the day I searched) - plus various tv shows (probably wrong) and crime novels


In an indoor shooting leading to a murder witnessed by police officers, then one of the officers being hit (shot in the arm) and needing medical treatment, what's the police procedure?

The person murdered turns out to be Navy, so NCIS is going to take the case, and the shooter escapes.

Who else gets there on the scene? Back-up first, then EMT, or not that order at all? The shooting takes place at 8 - 8.30am - when does the NCIS team arrive, and who/what do they find (the residential building where the shooting happened will be shut down, police there, who's in charge, who interact with the NCIS team?)?

Or you can all tell me to go lay down and stop be anal over those pesky details I probably won't use the half of for a fanfiction in a fandom that takes the rules of all things reality and make them weep.