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Sherlock BBC Prompting Meme

"we get all sorts around here."

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Giggles at the Palace
This is a place for all sorts of off-topic discussion.

You can post anon or un-anon, per your personal preference, as usual.

All I ask is that you stay civil and (hopefully) friendly.

If you also want to use this thread to try to find a beta for a fic, or ask a brit-pick-ish question, I think that would be an acceptable use. Have fun!


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any grammarians in the house?

I came across this sentence in a novel and I just can't parse it: "You shouldn't have could." (emphasis original) The character is a working class Londoner. The full context is "'You shouldn't have told your mates about [X],' she said. 'You shouldn't have could.'"

In what sense is "could" being used emphatically? I'm used to the propredicate construction in British English, but I would expect something like "you shouldn't have done" or "you shouldn't have, but you did" depending on what the character wanted to emphasize. Here I can't figure out what the "could" is indicating. ('could' what? The character has direct knowledge of X, so it isn't the case that the person addressed should not have known what he told his friends.)

Re: any grammarians in the house?

Either the writer isn't a Brit at all or it's a new slang term used by Londoners that I haven't heard.

TMI: One night stand safety advice?

Never done this before but I kind of really want sex. (Still in the process of thinking it through.)

I tend to be very paranoid about safety. So, ladies (I'm in the states), what kind of safety precautions do you generally observe when it comes to one night stands? (I don't mean condoms and STDs, I mean roofies and making sure he takes no for an answer when you say no oral sex.)

Re: TMI: One night stand safety advice?

Um. I'm talking through my hat because I've never had a one night stand, the closest I ever got was a bit of groping at a party where I'd been drinking that lead to me deciding no way.

Roofies: Never leave your drink alone. You drink it, you take it with you, if you are dancing, you wait until you are done drinking to dance and get a fresh drink.

Bad choices: I can't really tell you, other than to let you know that you might consider it a one night stand, but there's no guarantee he'll be content with that. Guys have this huge reputation as wanting to play the field and have commitment free sex, but in my very, very limited experience, unless they are getting a ton of it or you really screw it up, having a girlfriend is grand.


Is the word Wank ever used to refer to a woman masturbating? Or is it a male word?

Re: Wank

In Brit Eng, no. It refers to men, though this may be changing with young women.

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K - little vague here but -

How do you all deal with big transitions in your lives? Like big relationship changes, leaving a community, living in a new (or old, from earlier in your life) place, etc.? Do you have ways of staying grounded and focused?

All of the sudden a lot is changing for me... I'm pretty confused and am not dealing very well. Any advice/experiences you want to share?

The last time I made a major change (moving from Hawaii to Oregon, without a place to live, friends, or job waiting for me and only my husband by my side) I likened it to being in orbit. Freefalling. I was slowly headed down to where I'd touch the ground and everything would be real again. And I could kinda see it ahead of me, miles below my feet, but I wasn't there yet.

Then as things came into place, I got an apartment, I got a car, I made a friend, I slowly felt my feet touching ground again. And then I was there, and around me was my new home.

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The Theory of Narrative Causality watchalong

Anyone interested in a Theory of Narrative Causality-inspired watchalong?

Mycroft isn't, apparently, given that he's giving me what I'm pretty sure is KOREAN...

Re: The Theory of Narrative Causality watchalong

Me! Me!

I'm on Eastern Standard time. Someone was saying we should have two different watchalongs for the sake of people in different time zones.

Hi! Not sure about terminal/comatose patients, but my mom's a nurse and I can ask her in the morning if you'd like.

On a more general note, the wards in NHS hospitals (again, I can ask mom about private hospitals) tend to be fairly utilitarian, sparse furniture, not really any decoration on the walls. These days they're very keen on you using alcohol hand gel before/after you enter/leave the ward. The wards are usually quite light, there's a nurse's station where all the nurses congregate at visiting time for their break. Toilets, obviously. Sometimes a plant or something at the nurses's station.

No more than two to a bed at visiting time and you have to get your own plastic chair from a stack they keep for visitors on the ward. The nurses get really arsey if you sit on a patient's bed/chair. The mattresses are plastic covered, the beds horrendously ugly but practical, made out of metal and usually coloured beige for some unknown reason. The sheets are white, on a shared ward there are curtains around the bed that are normally white too.

Each patient has a bed, a 'comfortable' chair and a little cupboard next to the bed where they can keep their stuff - washbags, nibbles, magazines, books, stuff from relatives etc. There's also a table on wheels that goes over the end of the bed for the patient to use. Um, they always get jugs of water and cups as well. There's often a telly/phone/e-mail thingy that's attached to the bed and can be pulled down for the patient to watch it, though you have to pay to have that and the price is something extortionate like a tenner for three days' use which I think is disgusting.

Oh, and there's a little whiteboard above the patient's bed with their name and the name of their consultant written on. Their medical file is in a holder attached to the end of the bed, along with another bottle of alcohol hand gel that the NHS are big on at the minute.

A lot of hospitals are converted Victorian institutional buildings, old workhouses or asylums and the like, so the wards can have very high ceilings and big windows and jfc, the corridors. Some hospitals are purpose-built concrete boxes with the wards set out in an order that's meant to be logical but rarely is. There's always a shop in the outpatients reception area that's like a little newsagents, selling sweets, drinks, magazines, papers, fags, sandwiches etc, often run by the Women's Royal Voluntary Service (WRVS). Normally a coffee shop as well, and at one hospital I went to there was a tea station run by volunteers for a couple of hours at busy times, which was really nice, as it meant we got a decent cup of tea and a chat from the volunteers instead of a surly employee of a Costa chain and we could pay whatever we wanted for it.

Having elderly relatives means I spend a fair amount of my time in hospitals, so please feel free to ask anything else you want to know! :)

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There have been a lot of wall-o-text posts lately. I like to assume that this has to do with people not knowing how to change the default settings in 2010MSword so they end up with wall-o-text when they copy paste into any other program.

So, if this is happening to you:

1) Change the "after" spacing to 0.
2) Double return.


This way, when you single return, it won't look like you've double spaced when you haven't.

Re: Wall-O-Text

You can also, after having written, do a search-replace for the paragraph character and make it double.

Find: ^p
Replace: ^p^p

If you've used soft returns, this won't catch them, you'd need to replace the soft returns first:

Find: ^l
Replace: ^p

Then do the doubling replacement run.

Only do the whole document once though, and it'll look really weird in Word if you don't fix the after/before spacing mentioned above first, but it will take your single returns and make them doubles.

Or use Notepad or Wordpad! Fewer frills = fewer technical whoopsies! ^.^

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How much of yourselves go into your stories?

I've always wondered how other writers deal with this.
I tend to put a lot of myself into my stories--I'm a bit of a "method writer," so to speak. I take my own experiences and twist them, exaggerate them until I have something to base my characters' thoughts and actions on. Right now, for example, I'm writing a character who is struggle with low self-esteem and depression, because I've had bouts of that. When I write kink, I write the things that I find erotic.

It's kind of weird for me, because, on the one hand, I sometimes feel like I'm always writing the same characters--i.e., variations on myself--or that I'm relying too much on my own experiences. At the same time, when you write about things you know, there's a sense of genuineness that comes through, a sort of insider knowledge, if you will.

The only reason this popped into my head was because I was trying to explain my memory quirks to someone over the weekend. I'm introverted, and prefer listening to speaking. Unfortunately, I also tend to remember things people say, rather than who is saying them--for example, I won't remember a name or a face, but I will remember that we met at a concert two years ago and the electricity shut off for a moment, or you couldn't remember the word 'baccarat' and said 'bacchanal' instead. I was at a big event, selling some crafts, and by the end of the weekend my brain was just burning with random stuff about the people selling next to me and the customers who chatted. I wasn't trying to eavesdrop or memorize anything, I just overheard conversations and they stuck in my brain for days. Suddenly I thought, wow, this would make an amazing character trait for Anthea, or perhaps Sherlock/Mycroft to a lesser degree. I could write all about what happened to me this weekend--and now we're back to the opening question.

tl;dr: method writing. Do you draw on your own experiences when you write, and is that good or bad for you?

Re: How much of yourselves go into your stories?

Very little of me goes into my stories. My personal experiences are far too dull to relate into fic.

I have a matrix of rules/motives/imperitives and needs/circumstances for predicting how people behave and I use that to tell me how my characters would think and react in different circumstances. It seems to work pretty well (both in real life and in fic).

Also I read the dialog aloud, and that helps keep my dialogue smooth and reasonably natural.

Inspiration for the ACD story dancing men?


From an article first posted in 1892. Dancing Men was published in 1903. What do you think?

Hi meme!

I've been lurking around for a good month getting my fic on (apparently I can never read too many domestic!fics) and I just realized that I still have no idea where this 'three continents!John' comes from. Is this some ACD canon I'm missing or fanon or what?

It's from the official 'Blog of John Watson', I believe, though I'm not 100% sure. ^^;

It's on one of the tie-in sites, at any rate. :)

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Job search

Any tips on getting a job? I have work experience in offices, which is where I'd like to work again. I left the job market to return to school and get my BA, which I now have. And now I don't have a job. I worked through a temp agency before, but they won't help me now because I don't have two years recent work experience -- because for the last two years I was getting my degree. Now I don't even know where to begin. How do you even directly send a résumé to a company, or find a company to send it to? As pathetic as it probably sounds, the online job lists aren't exactly helpful or inspiring.

Understandably the economy sucks so I'm not taking it too personally, but I welcome any advice, nonnies. Or even just some cheerleading?

Re: Job search

1 -What country are you looking or work in, that might narrow it down a bit? Some countries have government sponsored programs that may be able to assist you. Look on your government's web page and poke around.

2 - Big companies may have a 'jobs posting' or career opportunities. Go to the corporate site and look through their contact pages and anything labeled 'career'

3 - Keep your resume below two pages in length, pick five things the company will be most interested n about your education and experience and bullet point them at the top. Check around for sites with resume formating tips.

4 - When applying to a corporation, apply for a specific job posting. Write a coverletter detailing several things you've done or learned that would most directly apply to that job and company. Demonstrate that you have a knowledge of the company's primary activities and it's general corporate culture.

5 - While you are looking for work, if you can afford to, volunteer in a similar capacity with a non-profit organization. This will help develop your skills and experience and will look fantastic on your resume. If you can't afford to spare the time and need to just get any job to survive, do so, but don't slack just because it's not the job you really want. A good reference from any employer is great, and a work ethic always sells.

6 - See if your uni has any co-op programs in your field. The companies participating in the co-ops will be predisposed towards liking the uni you went to, even if you weren't in a co-op program.

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'This Guy, A Junkie?'


I found this section I'm quoting on an early prompt page. While I think it's an interesting prompt, I think it's an even more interesting discussion because I agree with the points made.

Why was John so surprised to find out Sherlock had a substance abuse past?

"John was clearly surprised when Sherlock inasmuch as told him as he was a recovering drug addict, standing up for him even as Sherlock's eyes gave him the cutthroat gesture (amazing how Sherlock can do it without moving his hand.) With Harry around (not to mention being a doctor) John is no stranger to addiction, and yet he was astonished re: this part of Sherlock.

So, that scene, or maybe a later conversation (with Sherlock or someone else) about why John was surprised--my personal take is that Sherlock really doesn't fit the type John has associated with addicts...so maybe something about John rethinking people, or reconsidering Sherlock (which strikes him then as odd since he'd known Sherlock for what, a day? The line "This guy, a junkie, have you met him?" makes me giggle, since Lestrade has known Sherlock far longer (even if he insists John knows him better after a day) and, well...have you met him, John?)"

Re: 'This Guy, A Junkie?'

I don't think the implication was that he was a recovering addict at all. Yes, John went for the worst case scenario. Perhaps being a doctor with an alcoholic sister and experience with soldiers, who often become addicts on leaving the service, he assumes all drug use means addiction. Or, because the police are doing a search he thinks they have inside information - in fact all they are doing is trying to intimidate and annoy. No arrest they made under those circumstances would be legal and they know it.

Of course, as we all know the Holmes of literature was a casual user in a time when the author was trying to make a point about prohibition. This Holmes seems similar, not the type to be an addict but more an individual who uses drugs to stave off boredom or to stimulate the thought process (his use of nicotine). It is probably easier on UK TV to express the view that drug use isn't addiction in most cases than it is in other countries - it's done fairly often even on our soaps - and I think that;s what they were implying rather than addiction.

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So... I have a character who is a journalist. What would the protocol be for her to get onto crime scenes? I want the kind of movie-type thing where she can flash a pass at the police and they have to let her in. I can't imagine that that kind of thing actually exists, but is there anything like that? I will probably just have to make it up...


I work in UK Criminal Justice, though not police, and this isn't how it works, unfortunately. Scenes are restricted entry, press aren't allowed in and everyone gets logged onto a scenelog. If the scene is outside a tent goes up partly to protect from weather but also to protect against press intrusion. Scenelogs are one of the things defence can look at to challenge chain of continuity of evidence: If you have randoms wondering around, how do you know the evidence hasn't been disrupted?

Some forces were trying to bring in recording the scene so senior police officers didn't go in: don't think it went down too well- it's one of the privileges of rank - but it shows even if you're on the force, you're not guaranteed entry. The Crime Scene Manager is the person with the authority to decide if you go in (Anderson in the BBCverse.)

That being said, the chance of Sherlock and John being allowed in a scene without wearing hairnet, facemask, full scenesuit, gloves, shoe covers and having an elimination DNA swab taken is also zero, or it should be, unless the Senior Investigating Officer is incompetent - I don't think Lestrade is potrayed as incompetent. So it's a protocol the writers have also had to bypass (Partly I suspect because no one looks good in a hairnet!)

It's more likely that your journalist gets early information and arrives before the police do: but if they want to maintain good links with force (and in they're a crime correspondant, they're going to have to) they need not to be poking about at a scene. If they contaminate something or destroy some evidence they could completely scupper the case. Even if they don't, their presence at the scene could create reasonable doubt in the mind of a jury about the forensic evidence and prevent conviction.

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Easter Eggs

Has anyone found any Easter eggs or hidden surprises on the Sherlock DVD?

I love those things.

Re: Easter Eggs

Of all the DVDs in the world that should have an Easter Egg or two, this should be one. *waits*

Odd little phrase

"Have at it, John," Sherlock gasped.

Have at it?

I know it's not contemporary British English. US friends say it's not US English either. So is it yours Canadians or Aussies?

Re: Odd little phrase

It is ours (maybe theirs, too)!

I'm American, and "have at it" is part of my everyday vernacular (though, sadly, I am rarely gasping it breathlessly at John Watson). My use of it predates my time spent living near the Canadian border and fraternizing with Canadians, so it's not a foreignism I've picked up.

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