October 21st, 2010

happy days

Vampires working for The Red Cross or other blood banks

Setting: Modern day America.

Details: Vampires who have no problem with sunlight (and are undetectable for the most part) working for a blood bank and pinching a few bags here and there.

Alright, going out of my mind here. I've checked the tags and I've done my googling, and still, nothing.

I need to know what it is like to work for The Red Cross and/or other blood banks. What are their employment titles? What are the job descriptions? Education levels? What are the hours like? Who are the people running blood drives, are they all volunteers? How hard would it be to steal blood? I'm also looking for any sort of little details, so I would be much obliged to anyone with previous volunteer/employment experience. Examples: What does it look and smell like?

Several years back, I met someone in passing who told me they were some sort of buyer or something for The Red Cross. They basically told me that it was their job to make sure that the blood in stock was used before expiration and they would ship it all over to other hospitals and blood banks depending on need. Any ideas about what this occupation might be called/entail?

Any and all help would be greatly appreciated. This is the only occupation in my novel that I do not have personal experience with and it's really making me uncomfortable. I have actually thought about just visiting a local Red Cross chapter, but this is really last resort because ironically... blood and needles make me vomit and/or faint.
disco darcy!

an imbroglio of regency titles

I am thinking of writing a fanfic for the short story "Pursuit" by Georgette Heyer. The issue is, I can't figure out the ranks and relationships of some key figures.

The facts are these:
  • The hero is the Earl of Shane.

  • Midway through the story, two people described as "the Earl's aunt-in-law and her son, his cousin and heir" show up.

  • The Earl calls his aunt "Aunt Almeria." The story refers to her otherwise as "Lady Wilfrid Drayton" or just "Lady Wilfrid".

  • Her son is called "The Honourable Frederick" and "Mr. Drayton".


I cannot square these facts with one another in a manner satisfactory to myself.

Relying upon my usual source for regency title information, I can see that Aunt Almeria's courtesy title of "Lady Wilfrid Drayton" means that she must be married to Lord Wilfrid, and that Lord Wilfrid must be the younger son of a duke or marquess.

How, then, is her son the Earl's heir? The younger son of an earl is not "Lord Firstname", so her husband's father must not have been an earl.

I also cannot find how the son of a younger son of a duke or marquess is addressed. I am perfectly ready to believe that they are called "the Honourable", but I cannot find any source to that effect.

Here are the explanations for the facts that occur to me:
1. The Earl's father, though he goes unmentioned in the story, is actually still living and is a Marquess. The Earl is the only son of the Marquess. Almeria married the Marquess's younger brother, Lord Wilfrid. Mr. Drayton is thus the previous Marquess's male-line grandson and so, if the current heir to the Marquessate dies without a son, he will sooner or later inherit the whole shebang. The Earl is 33, so it certainly conceivable that his father has not died yet, even back then. (This is the solution I prefer if it works.)
2. Lord Wilfrid Drayton was the Earl's mother's brother. The two had at least one older brother, who is the current duke/marquess. Lord Wilfrid's son Frederick thus has no real claim on the Earl of Shane's fortune, but for whatever reason, he is the person named in the Earl's current will. Obviously, Mr. Drayton would not inherit the title. Either the Earl's title would go extinct at his death, or it would devolve upon some distant relative to whom the Earl feels no responsibility to leave any of his money and land (probably the former). (I don't really like this solution, as it seems messy and might require me to learn all kinds of nonsense about regency era wills.)
3. Georgette Heyer screwed up. (This would make me sad.)

I have looked through Wikipedia pages on courtesy titles and the chinet.com pages, and tried to Google, but I haven't found much. Especially on the question as to the courtesy title, if any, of children of younger sons of dukes and marquesses. I can't find a word on that issue.
Stock >> counter decadence

Russian term of endearment for big brother figure

I'm looking for a casual nickname or term of endearment that can be used for a non blood related big brother figure. The story takes place in the 1960's, with the speaker being a native Russian woman and the man being of different origin. They're both soldiers, he's a good deal older than her and there are no romantic feelings between them. The story itself is slightly AU and the situation they're in negates the Cold War aspect.

So far I've been searching for russian terms of endearment and nick names (as well as scanning the posts here) but I've only been able to find articles on how you create a nickname from a persons given name. I'd rather avoid that if I can - the best would be if I could find something that literally means "brother" or similar. I did find a straight translation for brother (and words like it, i.e. blood brother) but they were in cyrillic and since I don't speak or read russian I didn't feel too confident in using any of them.

General non-name based terms of endearment would also be very welcome. She speaks english fluently but I'd like the option of adding a word in russian here or there if I can to add some flavor.