February 9th, 2010

  • gisho

Visible signals over 100 miles

Setting: Cornwall, after a nuclear war has wiped out most of Europe.

Survivors in England assume that everyone in mainland Europe is dead. They no longer have sattelite technology to verify this, but they've gotten no radio signals and nobody who's ventured toward Calais by boat has spotted signs of life. Unbeknownst to them, there are survivors in Brittany. The nuclear blasts EMPed out enough equipment that the Brittany survivors can't simply make radio contact. They're ekeing out an increasing miserable existance, and somebody gets the bright idea to send up a signal in hopes of attracting attention from England. Ideally, I would like this to be something visible from the coast of Cornwall.

What would be involved? My first thought was 'fireworks', but nothing I've found tells how far away fireworks are visible. One fireworks display was described as 'visible for hundreds of miles', but it happened on top a mountain. I've found ways of getting things to the height of a mountain, if you have the right equipment - the Paris Gun was supposed to be able to launch shells 25 miles high, for example, and modern professional fireworks are apparently launched with something that closely resembled artillery. However, I cant imagine the surviviors having one of those lying around.
What's left? What makes a really big flash?
Merlin: Pretty Please

Italian Slang

Everyone was so helpful with my last question! Thank you guys so much. I am need of a little more help now, though. In my story, Ron is living in Florence and working at a gelato shop. One of his costumers (a young Italian man) asks him to go to a disco with him. He talks to Ron in Italian, but I'm only including certain phrases said in Italian slang. I've done some research and this is what I've come up with, but I have a feeling at least a bit of it is wrong and I would like someone to critique it:

mi culo = my ass/arse (as in: I've caught you staring it.)
Mi maschio inglese = My sexy Englishman
miei amicos = my (all male) friends
mi inglese = my Englishman

I am also in need an Italian word/phrase a gay man would use to describe himself, as well as other gay men. I've found a few words used to describe them, but they were all insulting and didn't really seem like a word a gay man would use to describe himself. If you can give it to me in both singular and plural forms, I will love you forever.

A HUGE Thank You to anyone who can help me!

x-posted at whatsitcalled

EDIT: I can't even handle how helpful you all have been! Thank you SO MUCH! You deserve an award, seriously.

(no subject)

This might be a bit strange, but I have no clue how to go about even finding this out for myself. For the record, I don't speak a single word of German.

Character A has been studying German for a few months, with little results. He goes to say something romantic to Character B ("Will you marry me?" being the top choice, but anything romantic works). Instead, he completely screws things up and ends up saying something completely ridiculous ("Will you petrol me?" or "I love the lamb in your eyes", etc). It needs to be something someone plausible and believable, some sort of mix-up that could actually happens.

I've tried searching through translation and dictionary sites in an effort to construct my own vocabulary mistakes, but it's surprisingly hard to purposely mess up when you don't know the language at all.

Any suggestions? Any possible place I could look? Any likely sentences I can use? I'm just desperate from something romantic-like twisted into something ludicrous.

Thanks in advance!
Chief Mouser

Early testosterone injection

Setting: A vaguely steampunk British Empire AU somewhere between 1880 and pre-WWII-ish.

Research: Googled "history of testosterone," "testosterone injection history," and other variations. I found a bit about a physician who injected himself with a mixture of extracts from animal testes but not much else.

My character is a trans male physician, and I was wondering how to semi-realistically portray him experimenting with testosterone injection. What was the early research on hormones like? How would he have obtained and administered it, and would the effects be any different than what modern testosterone injection does? The setting is rather ambiguous and possibly a bit more scientifically advanced than Britain in that time, so I don't mind specific anachronisms, but a general idea of if it would even be remotely feasible and what it might have been like would be great.