I’ve been pondering over the infamous pool scene we got in season 2 and trying to come up with a reasonable explanation on why the hell Altean pools are upside down. And the only logical thing I can thing of is that for Alteans, pools are only used in a decorative fashion- not for actual recreational use as Lance and Keith both thought. I mean look again at the room…
Look at all that empty space! I imagine that it’s very possible that the so-called ‘pool’ room once actually functioned as a private party room, complete with a pretty, shimmering reflective ceiling that would look absolutely gorgeous in dim lighting.
Which brings up another point- that there is a good possibility that Alteans can’t swim.
No, think about it. We know that Atlea does not have rain from the conversation that Lance and Coran had, but we know from Allura’s memories that Atlea has an abundant plant-life so it’s possible that the water they receive come from harder to reach locations such as glaciers or ground water, but they don’t have rivers, streams, and lakes like Earth does- easy access water that have allowed humans to venture into learning how to swim to adapt and survive.
So with this new information, I wonder what Allura and Coran were thinking when Keith and Lance found out about the pool room from them? Did they think the boys were interested in the ceiling artwork?xD
In 2013, Arlington-based Synetic Theater took their signature cinematic style to a new level when they flooded the stage with water for a production of The Tempest.
The physical theater company, well known for their wordless productions of Shakespeare plays, had previously created a water stage for their 2010 production of King Arthur. Known for their creative use of mixed media, Synetic Theater utilized the water to add an extra layer of magical realism to that production.
The Tempest was to be the 9th installment of Synetic’s popular Wordless Shakespeare series and Founding Artistic Director Paata Tsikurishvili was inspired to use a water stage by the way in which water is closely tied to the plot.
“The exiled Prospero is sent to an island, surrounded and inundated by water,” Tsikurshvili said. “His power and magic grows from it, and even the inciting action is created by water when Prospero uses a storm to bring his enemies to him.”
Water is a versatile theatrical element, conveying a variety of emotions and feelings. It can be at once dramatic, comical, magical, and lyrical. Additionally, the hypnotic combination of water and physical theater captivated audiences’ imaginations in a totally new way.
Once Tsikurishvili decided on the watery world his Tempest would be set in, he tapped Synetic’s Resident Stage Manager Marley Giggey and Technical Director Phil Charlwood to figure out the logistics of getting water into a pool onstage. “It was the strangest combination of terror and excitement I have ever experienced,” Giggey said of her first meeting about working on a water stage.
Technical Director Phil Charlwood had worked on King Arthur three years prior, and this time he strove to improve circumstances for the actors. The biggest challenge was keeping the water at a comfortable temperature. By using large heaters, Charlwood was able to keep the water warm during performances.
Charlwood also used his innovative design and building techniques to create one of the most compelling elements of the production, a piano fountain that served as an important piece of the set.
Filling the pools and keeping the water clean and safe fell to Giggey. "The water came from several hoses running from two sinks in the laundry room backstage and in the lobby,” she said. “The drain was a series of PVC pipes that connected together and went to a hose. We would bring out all the pipes and connect them - going out the loading dock door and leading to a floor drain in the parking garage that could accommodate all that water! Before each performance I would do a half drain and fill.
“We would drain about half of the pool and then fill it back up to show levels with hot water. On Fridays and Sundays we did a total drain of the pool and a very through scrub and clean. Then we let it dry for at least 12 hours before refilling. It was a time consuming process, but keeping the pool safe and clean was key.”
Once the water was on stage, Giggey was faced with more challenges. The stage lights made it difficult for the actors to consistently see the spike marks. This problem was solved with a grid system that allowed the actors to line themselves up with the left and downstage points.
The actors movement in the pool created a lot of splashing into the audience. Synetic offered branded ponchos to patrons in this “splash zone” and those seats became the most popular for the production.
Lighting designer Andrew Griffin enjoyed working with water and overcoming the challenge the water gave him in designing a light plot for the show.
“The light would reflect and refract because the water floor was reminiscent of a mirror,” he said. Griffin used several low-angled sidelights to exploit the angles of light that would scrape across the floor, rendering less of a reflected impact on the architecture of the space. This effect made it seem as though the water was dancing along with the characters. "Through a lot of careful planning, we created some pretty great effects,” said Griffin.
When working with water, there was also the question of mold and mildew - particularly concerning costumes. The costumes were all treated with camp spray to help waterproof them. "Cleaning the costumes was very tricky,” Giggey said. “They had to be thoroughly washed so we turned the back room of the theater into a ‘dry room’ with fans blowing from all directions and drip buckets to catch all the water. The last thing any actor wanted was to put on damp costumes or shoes when they came in the next day.”
Working with water required Synetic’s creative team to master a free-flowing element that is not easy to control consistently. Synetic was able to overcome many obstacles and use the water to their advantage with the help of various theatrical elements, all while taking the necessary steps to protect their performers.
The hours of maintenance required to keep the pool clean and functional and the additional challenges of working with water in a theatrical setting paid off. “It was a moment that was so immersive and dramatic that it was difficult to believe it was happening live in front of you,” Giggey said. "The energy in the theater as the actors were jumping, spinning, and splashing was electric!”
Overall, the creative team, crew, actors and audiences appreciated and valued this rare experience. The professionalism, ingenuity, and talent of the production crew, actors, and artistic team helped to make The Tempest Synetic’s highest grossing show to date.
So I’m a lifeguard at a local pool, and at this pool we have various services we offer. Aquatic fitness programs, swimming lessons, stuff like that. Because of this, we have a very strict schedule so that the pool can function for everyone who uses it.
However, there are still a surprising amount of people who cannot accept the fact that other people get to use the pool now. Just the other day I had to tell a swimmer that lane swim time was over and that it was time for swimming lessons for the little kids:
Me: Excuse me ma'am, but lane swim is over now, we need to take this lane out now.
Swimmer: You can’t take out the lane, where will I swim?
Me: Well, lane swim is actually over now, everyone needs to leave so that we can teach lessons.
Swimmer: But I’m not done! Can’t I just stay in while you teach them?
Me: No ma'am, if there’s someone swimming there needs to be a guard on duty, and all the guards will be teaching.
Swimmer: Can’t you just teach and guard at the same time?
Me: No ma'am, teaching while guarding impairs my ability to guard, which is not only a safety hazard but also illegal.
Swimmer: Unbelievable! This is terrible service! I pay for my membership and I deserve good treatment!
She kept ranting at me as she left, but I was busy trying to corral six rowdy kids. The kicker was that while she obviously really wanted to keep swimming, she had shown up with only 15 minutes left in the slot. We also have several big schedules posted around the pool.
The name is simple—Villa 20—but the villa that opened last week at Greece’s Amanzoe in the Peloponnese peninsula is anything but. Spread out on four acres and constructed on six levels with nine bedrooms and seven pools, it functions as a veritable boutique hotel within the hotel. There’s a staff of ten assigned to it, as well as a dedicated beach cabana at the resort’s beach club a short drive away (the resort is located on a hilltop with striking views of the Aegean but isn’t seaside) plus a spa with hammam, Pilates equipment, a yoga studio, etc. Read more >
Would you take a dip in a swimming pool that once functioned as a subway station?
Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet, a center-right candidate for mayor of Paris and former environment minister, has unveiled a series of plans to turn the legendary “ghost stations” of the Paris Metro into underground oases.
Work of fiction ahead. Meant to read as a book in a video game or something.
Magic and Alchemy in Redguard Architecture
by Josephine Laurent
I must admit that I had never given Redguard and Yokudan magic much thought until I had a life-changing experience in Hegathe. My fixer Maha suggested I try a local and cold treat called faloodeh, which is made from thin noodles with syrup made from sugar and rose water, then flavored with lemon, lime, fruits, almond, pistachio, and other flavorings and spices. It was a welcome respite from the blistering heat, but I was shocked when she explained that no direct magic was used to produce such a cool confection. There had been no frost salts, no powdered ice wraith teeth, and no frost spells.
Utterly fascinated, I asked her to arrange a tour of how such things were possible in the blistering heat of the desert. This is how I came to discover the use of magical principles in Redguard architecture. In order to preserve ice, meats, and assorted fruits and foodstuffs, the Yokudans had built these domed ice-pits across the land that were so cold they could keep ice frozen for extended periods. The Redguards had adapted such structures to afford themselves the luxury of iced goods in the oppressive heat of a Hammerfellian summer.
These ice-pits are around 60 feet tall, and had a large subterranean storage space dug out from under it. The exterior itself was made from a special type of mud clay called sarooj which is composed of clay, sand, lime, goat hair, egg whites, and ash mixed in a special proportion which made it extremely resistant to heat transfer. As a result, the inside stays cool, while heat from the outside is prevented from entering the building because of the thick insulated walls. This combined with the subterranean storage ensured that whatever goods are stored in the pit stay cool. The Redguards use alchemy but do not limit themselves to potions, but rather apply the alchemical solution and its effect in the very walls of their buildings.
There is more, however. While the use of alchemy is present in Redguard architecture, they also harness the wind - “Tava’s Gift” they call it - to react with the ice-pit and many of their buildings to produce a cooling wind, even in the height of day.
At the top of the dome was a small hole, or series of small holes called windcatchers. Typically windcatchers were pointed in the direction of the prevailing winds. The small hole, or series of holes of the ice-pit’s roof ensured that air passed into it at great flows. What resulted was a great amount of outside air entering into the pit at high speeds, producing winds that are below freezing. Typically the windcatchers are cut in such a way that the incoming jet of air would be directed onto the storage pit.
Without the use of a spell, scroll, enchantment or incantation, the Redguards produce a constant cold wind and can keep their goods frozen just through small architectural tricks and a bit of alchemy.
Some say the Redguards abhor magic, but I can clearly see that they simply use it differently. There is book called “Wind and Sand” by Afa-Saryat which is an enlightening read on how Redguards see and understand magic. With this new-found understanding, it becomes clear that the Redguards use magic in rather different and arguably more innovative ways than we in the rest of Tamriel do.
If their windcatching domes and heat-resistant walls weren’t enough, many homes, buildings, and public areas have large pools of water. From what I’ve been able to discern, much as water and heat produce steam, these pools serve a similar function. Like the wind wears down the rocks, the hot air wears down the water which breaks down into its infinitesimal components. This effect traps the heat and provides a cooling effect to the surrounding area, not unlike an area of effect spell. Again however, this is all done naturally.
This is the true heart of Redguard magic; it is so natural and inherent to their culture that they do not see it as magic. There are no incantations, gesticulations, scrolls, staves, or other magical objects required. It is a simple and subtle manipulation of the natural world around them that has allowed them to thrive in an area once known as the “Deathlands”.
Yay! More Elder Scrolls stuff!
I was recently inspired by a post going around tumblr of the ancient Persian “yakhchals” that managed to keep ice frozen in the heat of a Persian summer. I took that concept and ran with it for the Redguards of Hammerfell. I hope you all enjoy this little story through the eyes of a Breton mage, which is how I imagine “magic” to work and how it is perceived in Hammerfell and ancient Yokuda.
The first consequence of the impoverishment to which economic liberalization has condemned the world proletariat has been the take-off of a vast migratory movement from “South” to “North”, following the transfer of capital that the payment of foreign debt has caused. This migratory movement of biblical proportions, structurally connected to the new economic order, and bound to the globalization of the labor-market, is telling evidence of the ways in which the international division of labor has been restructured. It demonstrates that the debt crisis and “structural adjustment” have created a system of global apartheid. For they have transformed the “Third World” into an immense pool of cheap labor, functioning with respect to the metropolitan economies in the same way as the “homelands” functioned with respect to the white areas in South Africa.
Silvia Federici, Revolution at Point Zero: Housework, Reproduction and Feminist Struggle
Sgts. Stephen Wills (left) and Brandon Hendrix, drill instructors from Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego, motivate Jose Garcia, a Marine enlistee, during a Recruiting Station Seattle pool function at the Yakima Training Center in Yakima, July 17, 2015.
So, rumor has it that everyone’s fave non-Royals - Elliam - have found some swanky new digs not too far from their old stomping ground. Pics from their supposed new South Kensington pad have been released online. The twins might not be royal any longer but they’ve certainly not lost any of their taste for excess - think gold-plated bathrooms, subterranean pool and fully functional nightclub. The light-up dance floor and stripper pole should make Len feel right at home.
A realtor-who-would-not-be-named said that previous visitors to the property include Silvio Berlusconi and Becks himself… pre-Victoria that is. We are waiting to confirm whether they’re just renting or splashing the cash for a full-time den of debauchery.