January 17th, 2010

Manhattan neighborhoods

When: current day

Where: AU Earth ( the reasons for the "alternate" are not important in this context)

Search terms: The New York TImes real estate listings


The person is a Wall Street uber-wunderkind, having amassed by age 30 - and means both fair and
foul-but-unprovable - a personal portfolio of over $100 million that controls an even larger amount..

Whatever their voting address, their principal residence is in New York City because, as Willie Sutton
said, "that's where the money is".  I need the semi-specific neighborhood where they live.  The place
I have in mind is a) fashionable, but _not_ trendy; b) the penthouse of a building of at least 15 stories,
and c) solidly built with a state-of-the-art security set-up.

Looking at the TImes I find about a dozen listings for "East X Street", except for one (Franklin St) which
is apparently in on near Chinatown, where X is not less than 45.

Are there any other places such an object might be located?   Does this count as "The Upper East Side"?

EDIT: Thanks for the help. everyone.  Pursuant to greater need or better information, I'll go with "the low 60s off 2nd Avenue".

What a Shot Dime Looks Like

Setting: World War II

Does anybody have any pictures or descriptions of what a U.S. dime (10 cent coin, smallest US coin by diameter) look like after being hit by a rifle round, say from an M1903 Springfield? I've seen some images of dimes hit by air rifles and BB guns and smaller-caliber weapons, but haven't quite seen examples of the kind of damage a rifle round would do to a small coin. I'm hoping for something short of obliteration, something like "it was folded in half" or "half of it was gone, the rest twisted and warped", or something along those lines.

Search: shooting a dime, shooting a dime with a rifle (Web and image search)

Japanese student's reaction to a Ouija board

I have a character who is a Japanese exchange student in an American college. She was raised in Japan. My question is, how would she react to seeing a Ouija board (Parker Brothers style) used for the first time? This part of the story takes place in 2004, if that's important.

I know about the Japanese version of it, called Kokkuri-san, so I would think she would relate the board to her game from home once it was explained to her how it works. The reason I'm questioning this is that once I got into a conversation about Ouija boards in another community and I was told they have been banned in Japan. This isn't really gelling with what I know, so I wanted to double-check. Kokkuri-san is often played with writing simply drawn on paper; have formal boards been banned? Is the Parker Brothers board banned in Japan? Or was this person just wrong? It seems to me that if the boards had been banned, the government wouldn't allow movies to be made of teenagers playing Kokkuri-san. I'm quite confused.

Search terms: "Japan reaction ouija board," "Japan ban ouija board," "kokkuri san," "Japan ouija board."
  • Current Mood: full

Sensitivite areas in a fighting match with anthropomorphic opponents

I seem to have a knack for coming up with questions that are just too weird for Google. "How much would it hurt to get punched in the cloaca?" Really, now, no one thinks of that. Or, at least, not enough people for there to be a convenient FAQ or something I could have found by now. Sigh.

Anyway, I'm writing a story with anthropomorphic characters (furries) and there's a scene where two of them, a crocodile and a bat (both quite burly, if it matters,) have a sort of UFC/MMA-style cage fight. I'm trying to figure out how their animal features would factor into it, and tailor the rules of the fight accordingly. What I have so far is this: the crocodile has a very long muzzle and internal genitalia, and therefore the bat would actually be allowed to use below-the-belt blows as there isn't a lot there to be that exposed and vulnerable anyway (though it would be a bit pointless for him to do so for that very reason,) while above-the-neck shots are banned due to the muzzle being particularly vulnerable. By contrast, since the bat has a shorter muzzle and more mammalian naughty parts, the crocodile is subject to more typical rules against the bat (the crocodile can throw snout punches but can't go low.) Basically, I need someone to tell me if that actually makes sense or if I am doing something phenomenally stupid here.

If it matters, I already established within the story that the rules as described above give a huge advantage to the crocodile, but the bat insisted on having the match anyway because they're extremely bitter long-time rivals and such.

The bit about the low blows being allowed (but pointless) against the crocodile can be revised without too much trouble if it's wrong, but there are actually a few things that are currently hinged on his muzzle being vulnerable--at one point, the bat trips the crocodile and makes him faceplant (creatively stunning him to the point of temporary incapacitation since he hit his muzzle hard doing that, but getting away with it since it wasn't a direct muzzle attack or anything, just a trip, which is allowed) and the bat also pops the crocodile right in the snout after the match is over just to be a jerk.

Russian nicknames and terms of endearment

I'm looking for a nickname that an older mentor-type guy would call a teenager named Artem that he's... pretty close to and all but adopted. Both are Russian, in a modern American setting (so if the nickname gets used in front of others, it'll go right over their heads anyway). It'd be nice if it were something Artem's (probably Ukrainian) mother called him as a child, but it's not necessary. I like the sound of Artemka (it brings up plenty of hits on Google, so I know somebody uses it), but I've been having trouble finding nicknames for this particular name - hopefully because it's a little less common, not because it's just plain undiminutivable - that's just not possible, right? Or should I just go with something else entirely like zhukochka or myshechka (at least from the mother)? Actually, mentor-guy's brother-in-law is going to get called one of these two things (probably the latter), so if anyone could suggest less... cutesy-chka forms of those, I'd appreciate it.

An edit: Random Wikipedia delving the other day informed me that the snipers trained by Vasily Zaytsev were called zaichata ("bunnies"). Toying with calling a couple of kids some variety of "bugs", if it's even the sort of thing you could call kids. (End edit.)

And while I'm here, mentor-guy has a young niece with the name/nickname Candy. Anything cute and plausibly Russian she could be called? Some work with Google suggests Konfeta (or Konfetka?) to me. Also, since the circumstances of her birth were... somewhat unusual (mad science ahoy!), how likely is it that her (also Russian) parents would just flat-out name her Konfeta-or-whatever once the adventure settles down and they get around to naming her? They're globe-trotting types, but would likely raise her somewhere near her babysitting uncle, if living in the US helps the kooky names factor any. I'll settle for Candy, though, if Konfeta would be the Worst Name Ever - though some of my characters do end up with some odd names, so I'm not opposed to a name that makes people go "well, it works for a fictional character..." or such.

(Icon, aside from being of a Russian character, is unrelated.)

Arrested with a stolen phone - what next?

Hello everyone.
(First time poster, w00t!)

Setting: London, 2005.
Searched: "police procedures UK", "search of mobile phone on arrest UK", "police access mobile phone records", "police investigation mobile phone", "stolen mobile phone", "arrested with stolen items", various combinations and permutations thereof, tags; browsed the PACE Code C and Ask the police website. I'm not a native speaker, though, so I may have missed out some obvious search terms. :(

So my main character collapses in a seedy drug den, and two of his new-found friends pick his pockets, taking everything they find - keys, wallet and mobile. (Would they likely toss away the ID card/driver's licence as incriminating evidence?) Having the IQ of a soap dish, however, these fine gentlemen manage to get their arses arrested (don't know for what yet, but nowt hardcore) before they have a chance to sell the mobile. Now, what would the police do? Could they easily establish the mobile was stolen (I'm getting mixed results as to whether they have the right to search through it)? And would they be bothered to identify the rightful owner, try to contact him, say, on the landline, and, being unable to reach him, ring someone from the phone's contacts/last calls list?

Seems laughably far-fetched, but y'know. Pesky plot entanglements. Dire need of secateurs. Thought I'd ask.

Thanks in advance!