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11 February 2014 @ 10:37 pm
Give me a zombie apocalypse. Give me Titans. Give me dragons. Give me mountains to climb, battles to fight, innocents to save. If you must give me the horror of the world, give me the beauty, too. If you must give me the suffering, then give me the means to end that suffering. I will fight, I will train, I will sacrifice. I will face any danger; I will strip myself to bones; I will hone myself to a razor's edge if I need to. But give me something. Give me love, give me beauty, give me defiance, give me anything. I need passion, I need intensity, I need meaning. I need something more than a indentured servitude, a spray-tan, and a mortgage. I need something more than shallow niceties and superficial affections. I need something to fill my yearnings, something to fuel the fire in my soul. I need something to show me that I'm alive. I need something to show me why I'm alive. I need something. And I need it desperately.
Current Location: Room
Current Mood: indescribableindescribable
06 February 2014 @ 09:43 pm
I've finally found a picture so arousing that I almost cried.

I feel like I've reached some milestone of adulthood or something. 
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Current Location: Room
Current Music: "Glacies" - Qntal
05 February 2014 @ 06:51 pm
Anthony started Attack on Titan on Netflix last night. I'd wanted to see if for awhile, so I decided to watch with him. We made it through 10 episodes in one sitting. And oh my GOSH. I TOTALLY UNDERSTAND ALL THE HYPE NOW. I WANT TO KNOW ALL THE THINGS! WHAT ARE THE TITANS? WHAT IS IN THE BASEMENT? WHAT IS GOING ON? AUGGH.

I love bleak, violent, fantasy worlds, I love characters who rise defiantly against "fate", and I love stories that let me live a bit of my latent violent fantasies vicarously through them, and this has all of that and I am HOOKED. Eren is so balls-to-the-wall hardcore (even as a kid) it's almost disturbing. (Almost.) The music is great, the art is really high-quality, and the pacing-- the pacing is killing me. Normally you'd have a chill episode every so often to recover, but this is just like TITANS KILLING EVERYTHING, ALL SORTS OF SH*T GOING DOWN, BE EPIC OR RUN LIKE HELL all the TIME and it's RIVETING. I tried to work on cross stitch while I was watching, but haha, not much got done!

And best of all, 10 episodes in and we haven't had a single bath scene, no one has randomly fallen into/groped anybody's boobs, we have no idea what anyone's underwear looks like, and the closest thing to a "gag episode" has been the brief moments between Sasha and her food. THIS is what an apocalyptic war anime should be like.

Also, Anthony totally sensed it, and I lied and denied it when he asked me, but honestly, I think Eren's Titan transformation was insanely hot. Like can't-look-away-from-that-perfectly-sculpted-body hot. Like even-the-wierd-teeth-don't-put-me-off-in-fact-that-might-make-it-hotter hot. (I don't really know how to feel about that, haha!)

But UUUGH this SHOW.
Current Location: Work
Current Mood: hyperhyper
I was raised that a woman's breasts were a part of her sexual anatomy and that they should be covered in order to protect her modesty, just as the rest of her sexual anatomy should be. As time has gone by and I've been able to formulate my own opinions through my own observations and experiences, I've come disagree with this idea. That does not mean I plan to run bare-chested through town or go topless bathing, as my ideas do not change the views of the society in which I live, which has sexualized breasts, and which would a. ogle me b. view me as irresponsible or sluttish and c. likely arrest me were I to take off my top. Nor do I feel any great need to run around shirtless even if I could. (Besides its winter, it's too freaking cold to go anywhere without two shirts, a sweater, and a coat.)

But I ended up bringing up these thoughts to my mother when we were on vacation together in November. Now, my mother and I are very close, and though we don't agree on everything, I respect her, and I respect the principals that guide most of her decisions; and when we disagree, we still have listened to each other, and fully understood the other party's views and reasons for their opinions. However, her reaction to my statement was so utterly close-minded, so clearly motivated by prudishness, and was directed to so few of my actual points, that it was obvious that she had not even listened to them, let alone respected or understood them.

I said that if a woman's breasts were not meant to be seen, then neither were man's, and that if the fat on my chest so offended or excited society at large, than any man with an ounce of "jiggle factor" should be equally as expected to put on a shirt as I. My argument in summation was:

  • A. there is nothing inherently sexual about breasts.

  • B. The only difference between a man's breasts and a woman's is the amount of fat, and the milk-producing organs, which are not for sex, but for the nourishment of a child.

  • C. That they were able to be sexualized and fetishized as much as any other body part (i.e. ankles, feet, lips, the nape of the neck etc.) but that did not make them inherently sexual.

  • D. even if none of the above dispelled the "sexual" status of breasts, or allowed them to be displayed in public, than they should at least prove that any enforcement of breast-covering be aimed at both women and men.

Seeing her difficulty adjusting to this idea, I used roughly the same line of logic with an even more innocent part of the anatomy, and discussed legs. I said they look very much the same in childhood as they do in adulthood, that there is nothing at all sexual about them or about their uses, and that just because some societies have fetishized (women's) legs to point where they are considered sexual, that doesn't make them so. Then I added, again, that even if all this is wrong, and they are sexual, that there is no difference in a woman's legs and a man's, and as such, if a woman's legs are sexual and need to be covered than so do a man's.

My mother's response? Regarding legs, that legs WERE sexual, because (and I quote) "A woman wraps her long legs around a man when they have sex", and thus they should not be seen. (I can only assume that at some point a man may also wrap his legs around a woman's body during sex, but that wasn't mentioned.) The point about legs being as sexual on a man as on a woman, and thus, if that if one gender needs to hide them, than so does the other, was completely ignored. (According to this standard, considering the amount of times hands and mouths are used in sex versus legs, than no one should be allowed out of the house without mittens AND a disposable face mask on, at the very least.)

And regarding breasts, she also stated that these were inherently sexual, and her reasons why? Because breastfeeding was sexual, since you had to have sex in order to have a kid, and as such they should be covered.

Never mind that you can breast feed a child that you did not give birth to, and hormonally, you don't even have to have a child in order to lactate in the presence of one. And never mind that if we were to follow this line of reasoning, then it would be assumed that pregnancy itself is also sexual, and that infants produced via these pregnancies must be as well. The result of this thought-line would be no talking about babies or pregnancy ever (or at least not in public), that pregnant women must be swathed in padding to hide their "overtly sexual" condition, and by the same standard the kids themselves must also be hidden from view and covered up at all times until they reach an age where we can all forget that once upon a time their parents had to have engaged in some kind of hanky-panky in order for them to exist. AND once again the bottom line of my entire statement, that in order for identical body parts to be sexual in one gender, they must also be sexual in the other? Once again, completely ignored.

The absolute lack of understanding, respect, or logic in any of her responses made me angry enough that I just gave up the conversation entirely. Every argument I've listed above was on the tip of my tongue that night, but I kept silent, because it was totally clear she had no interest in even sparing me enough thought or attention to comprehend what I was saying, and so there would be no point.

This is a reaction I'm used to getting from most the people in my life on a range of topics, whether important or trivial. It is not, however, one I expected from my mother, who is usually intelligent and respectful enough to at least listen to my opinions and arguments, even if she disagrees. This complete shutting-out, and childish, prudish behavior coming from someone usually so mature about these things has deeply disturbed me. It has also made me mad as fuck. Even two months down the line, I'm still so mad that if a baby were to plop into my lap right now, I would-- without hesitation-- be breast-feeding that kid in public, and might not even bother with a blanket to cover up.

So congratulations, Mama. Nothing in my life, not even my own wanderings through the world, could have motivated me as much to show off my naked tata's to the universe as your frightened, insipid, intellectually-blind behavior. I hope you're happy.
Current Location: Room
Current Mood: aggravatedaggravated
Current Music: "Feral Love" - Chelsea Wolfe
08 July 2013 @ 08:10 pm
Last week I came to the disturbing realization that I’m completely burned out.

I’m normally a really responsible and proactive person, and putting things off, leaving things dirty, not getting stuff taken care of in a timely manner etc. annoys and exhausts me. So when I start just letting things slide, when I just don’t care anymore, when keeping up with things is just “too much work", I know something’s really wrong. And that’s how I’ve been the last three or four months. All the stress, and annoyance, and disatisfaction I’ve been feeling seems to have reached saturation point, gone beyond any real anger or depression and left me at this stage where all I can seem to summon up the energy to even care about are things I find pleasurable or interesting, and sometimes not even that much. (And honestly, the the fact that for the last two months there’s been no difference in light, sound, or temperature between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. every day isn’t helping me any either.)

Between eating breakfast and packing a lunch, or sleeping an extra fifteen minutes in the morning, I’m picking the latter, and subsisting off vending machines and fast food far too often as a result.

I’ve sold most of my furniture in prep for the move, so my belongings are just sitting on my floor right now. I should be sorting through them, or at least I could be putting them in a bin so they’re out of the way, but I just can’t seem to work up the gumption so they remain underfoot.

I’ve been wanting to go to the art museum and to the local conservatory, but getting out of bed before 2:00 on the weekends seems to be beyond my abilities.

I’m completely fed up with the endless, tasteless “healthy" food I’ve been eating for the better part of the last two years (and which I have nothing to show for) but going out to pick up something is too much hassle, so I end up just not eating anything.

My work ethic’s gone from busting my butt, working all the overtime, offering to pick up anything that needs doing, just trying to work as well and much as I can, to sitting hunched at my desk to hide the wordpad document open in one corner and the tumblr window open in another, an earbud playing music in my free ear, trying less to help the customers than to just avoid saying anything my boss’s might use to get me written up (I’m not kidding about this. I answered a customer’s question with “uh-huh" once a couple weeks ago; the customer threw a fit, and my boss’s response was that it was my fault and now I’m not allowed to say “uh-huh" anymore.) Not that I even care at this point, because I will legitimately get in trouble no matter what I’m doing anyway.

And for over a year now I’ve been trying to get into aid work or relief work or volunteering, but even on that end I’m so tired of filling out applications, and reading guidelines, and emailing people, and scanning stuff, and trying to get references— and all of it to be told “no" at every turn— that I’ve just stopped completely.

At least I’m writing. My two novels haven’t gotten this much attention almost the whole year, and I’m actually producing— not dreck like usual, but stuff actually worth talking about.

Thankfully the end is blessedly near. At the start of September I’m quitting my job (and will finally be seeing the back of my two bosses, who will not be missed) and moving out of state to stay with my parents and Lenore until I decide on my next move. I’ll be there at least through November, when my trip to the Mediterranean is set, and although I’ll probably be unemployed for a good chunk of that time, I’m hoping lack of work will finally give me the time and energy to get in better shape and devote some love and attention to my novels. And hopefully by January or so I’ll have something in aid work or volunteering lined up to look forward to.
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Current Location: Room
Current Mood: lethargiclethargic
20 May 2013 @ 11:59 pm
 So, due to not hearing my alarm go off on Sunday, I slept til 5:00 p.m. Meaning that despite my needing to be up 2 hrs earlier than usual the next day, there was nooo chance of me getting to bed at a decent time. All I could do was try and tire myself out and hope I konked out at some not-entirely-indecent hour. I finally felt tired enough to sleep at about 3 in the morning. Then I just lay there, physically exhausted, but with my brain awake, in an almost disconnected state, not thinking about anything except how aware I was that I wasn't thinking about anything. About the time this started to fade, Brittany's cursed parrot started "aaarrrrrkkkk aaaarrrkkk arrrrkkkk"-ing at the top of its lungs, and continued for around an hour, after which point I finally fell asleep. At what I can only calculate must have been about 4:30 a.m.

 So when my alarm went off 3 hours later, I knew my only chance of making it through the day was hitting the caffeine like a jaded mobster and hoping for the best. Which I did. The result was that I made it through the day alright, and felt well enough by closing time to stay an extra hour. By the time I got home I was so full of energy that I had to keep reminding myself it wasn't Friday. Everything was way more entertaining and exciting than it had any right to be, and I couldn't figure out why. Then, half-way through cooking myself dinner, I realized what was happening. And began to prepare myself for the next two steps in my caffeinated crest and descent.

 Caffeine usually doesn't have a strong effect on me, and I don't drink it very often. I have one caffeinated drink in the morning on weekdays, and usually nothing more. I even make a point of not drinking anything with caffeine after 7 p.m. However, when I suddenly break this routine and slosh myself in it, I have very strong reactions. First there's the rapidly increasing energy, then there's the slight giddiness, then outright excitement, then everything starts to become much funnier than it is, and stuff that's truly funny becomes paralyzing and I find myself with my face on my keyboard, weeping with laughter. Then comes an exhausted crash the likes of Hokusai's "Wave" and I collapse. Right now I am somewhere between the last two steps. Agh. Hopefully this will all pan out, and I'll feel normal tomorrow.
Current Mood: sleepysleepy
18 May 2013 @ 06:27 pm
  Having been in love with the story of Scheherazade since childhood, I've always known I wanted to eventually try my hand at a retelling. I've had several different ideas throughout the years, but never one that felt exactly right. I was always approaching it as a novel, not seeing any way to work the king's development from murderous nut-ball to someone you might plausibly be happy seeing Scheherazade marry with any shorter length.
But I recently had the idea for a short story, framing the whole tale within the thousandth-and-first night, when Scheherazade's last story finishes before dawn and Shahryar must decide whether to spare her or not. We know the framework of the original story, we don't necessarily need it elaborated on. But how they resolve the issues of guilt/forgiveness/what the heck they're going to do now need to be dealt with, and I had the idea to resolve that not through their own interactions, but through the action and development of the characters in Scheherazade's last story.

  Ideally, I actually had already formed an idea for one of Scheherazade's tales a long time ago, and as it dealt with a similar theme, it worked perfectly as her last story.
Read more...Collapse )
Current Mood: contemplativecontemplative
Current Music: "Song of the Nile" - Dead Can Dance
14 May 2013 @ 10:32 pm

Does anyone else ever suddenly get overwhelmingly depressed—like, unable to function, crying in the middle of work, crying on the way home, exhausted depressed— not about anything that’s happened to you, or that’s going on in your own life, but just about the general condition of the world around you? That all over the world, right now, people are being killed, raped, tortured, imprisoned, humiliated, starved, denied their basic rights, everyday, and it never stops? And it’s happened from the start, and it’ll keep happening, and there’s nothing you do can stop it?
I don’t see anyone else dealing with this, so it seems like I’m the only person who ever gets this way. Part of me wonders if maybe I’m just too soft-hearted for real life, while the other part wonders how on earth everyone else can just be moving along, undisturbed, like nothing’s happened.
But some days I just can’t deal anymore: sometimes it’s out the blue, other times I’ll have seen something or read something that set me off, but there are days when I just wish I was dead, or senseless, because the world is grotesque and there’s nothing I can do—nothing I can ever do— to really change it, and I just can’t stand it. I can’t help but think there must be other people who feel like this, at least once in awhile.
Current Location: Home - room
Current Mood: sadsad
Current Music: "Anabasis" - Dead Can Dance
17 April 2013 @ 12:37 am
There are days when the weight of all the world's miseries seems to settle on me at once, and I ask myself why I was even brought into to this horrible, horrible place. 
Current Mood: sicksick
06 April 2013 @ 02:51 pm
I have a tendency toward depression, and have since at least late childhood. It's further exacerbated by not knowing how to deal functionally with anger, and so having learned to channel it into depression instead. But the major reason for my depression through my whole life has been knowing in my heart that the world is a horrible place, and knowing how little power I have to do anything about it. And it drives me to do even the small amount I can to change it, and when I can't or don't I feel useless and a failure. What I don't understand, is how everyone else in the world doesn't feel this way, too, how they can see the darkest side of the world and not be crippled by it. I don't feel the need to do charity and service because I'm "such a good person", I do it because it's the only way I can stand the world I live in, and I can't comprehend how others don't feel that same need.
20 March 2013 @ 09:21 pm
I have a dependency on books that's like an addiction. It's very rare that any great length of time will go by that I don't have one book or another I'm chipping away at. A lot of what I read is fiction, but I read a lot of history as well, and that's where a huge part of the inspiration for my writing comes from. Because at it's core, my need to write comes from the need to re-write that history. I'll read something or hear about something that hurts that tender part in me, and I have to fix it. And in real life I can't. It's too late, or too far away, and I'm helpless to do anything about it. So I do the only thing I can, and I write them a better ending. I think that's why so many of my characters go through such hardship, because they're carrying the hurts and struggles of real people. But in my version, in the end the slaves are freed, the wounded are healed, the dying are saved; I rescue the characters because I can't rescue their inspirations. So, it's not an option for me to imagine a hopeless end for a story. I have to give the characters some chance of happiness, because the real people didn't, and if I doom the character, then I'll be back at square one, helpless to save anyone or change anything.
Current Mood: indescribableindescribable
Current Music: Infinite Time and Space - Guin Saga
13 March 2013 @ 10:58 pm
Sometimes their power begins before the cover is even cracked. I picked one up today that I’ll be reading soon. I held it in my hands and felt myself tingling with the thought of opening it, tantalized at the idea of what new people, and nations, and histories were lying between its pages, a whole universe bound inside a bundle of paper and ink. I was torn between wanting to read it, and not feeling ready to start it quite yet, but I wanted a little taste. I opened the first pages, ran my eyes over the map that covers them, then moved onto the first chapter, and scanned a few teasing lines to get a glimpse of the style, the sound, the names, the cadences. Sometimes I can just slip into a book without hesitation, without ceremony. But this one is a different animal. It needs more, I can’t just casually settle into it, much as I’m tempted to. It will need to be coaxed, I think, romanced, made to divulge itself only after the lights are low, and the room quiet, and all other thoughts have been set aside, when I can give myself to it without the shadow of other things and other stories to distract me.
Current Location: Room
Current Mood: contemplativecontemplative
Current Music: "So This is Love" - Cinderella OST