I just want to say, as a Texan, we already had Rick Perry. Ebola is just salt in the wound here.

In related news:

I have never spent so much time having to fact check people on ebola and google on my phone what it does, is, and how you get it. I have never spent time fact checking anyone, to be honest--generally, listening to other people be paranoid or wrong is an enjoyable hobby and one that requires minimal effort on my part, that being "staying awake", which gotta admit can be hard. Yet I do it, because not only is it bad information and wrong information, even when it's right conversation is drifting dangerously close to "And Obama will use this to take my guns so I cant' shoot ebola when it shows up" or so I assume; I'm telling you, it's getting very weird.

I get this is a horrible disease, I do. And I get that people are afraid, which makes sense: see "horrible disease". However, I'm also lazy; I don't get having to expend effort in feeling terror before we're at minimum out of single digits for the entire US. I don't even get out of bed for a tornado warning unless something achieves three feet levitation in my vicinity. How do people have this kind of energy?

Between Wikipedia's wealth of information on the cat genome, Cracked teaching me about the pros and cons of being a pickpocket or running Afghanistan as military governor, and trying to decide if I really need to go to the bathroom now (standing up?) or can wait (no standing up!) it's like--dude. You could right now be finding out all the forms aphasia can take and how many cities in India have a population greater than 1 million. And you are spending it on a disease in single digit numbers in the US. *

You could be on reddit reading in nosleep and realizing far, far too late what a terrible idea that was, but at least your irrational fear would be of cameras and eyedroppers--seriously, that was creepy.

This has been a message from me, as it's been a very long week.

* this applies to US citizens only, especially those on talk radio who really, desperately need naps or possibly muzzles.
Personal and cultural awareness thought, via FFA:
I was a cultural awareness class (nothing to do with Poles specifically) that had an example of the 'spaces' differences leading people awry. There was a hotel that had people constantly falling into their flower beds, till they investigated some and found out that it apparently occurred when persons accustomed to wide space interaction and persons accustomed to small space interaction met. The wide space people backed away to get more space and the small space people kept following to maintain the close connect. Eventually the wide space people ended up in the flower beds. - Nonny, FFA


I'm trying to decide if I'm Person Who Falls Into Flowerbed or Person Who Pursues Person Into Flowerbed and it's a toss-up. I think I would be Falls-Into-Flowerbed, but social anxiety can and does nail me into position every so often (it's random) where an earthquake wouldn't move me and you might crawl in my lap (not that I'm against this) and I won't move to save my life.

I'm also from the South, so I'm used to small space interaction to the point I have no idea if I naturally like it only that my body automatically assumes that position and God help me. The South (or Texas) also has the time-honored tradition of gossiping at the correct decibel so the person beside you (ie Gossip Subject) cannot hear, so there's that.

Currently, I'm breaking into hysterical laughter at the idea of watching this in action at this hotel. It's like everyone's in an unwitting horror movie lead-up, and half of them don't realize they're Michael Meyers slow-stalking the person who has no idea they're the latest victim until flowerbed dive.

So are you Flowerbed Michael Meyers or Flowerbed Victim One (or are you the Flowerbed of Retreat??????)? It's Friday and I literally cannot think of anything more useful to do with my time than get an answer to this pressing question.
For I am an aunt again!

My middle sister and her husband welcome M, an 11 lb, 8 oz, 22 inch boy (no, you read that right), delivered in the most common epidural way and holy shit, that's a lot of baby.

because seriously )

...that, by the way, is over one and a half Child at birth weight.

Heaviest baby ever born: 15.5 lbs, by Caesarean
Okay, so:

Closer to Home: Book One of Herald Spy by Mercedes Lackey.

Before I say this, I want to review the following: I have with only moderate irony liked these books. They were cracky and I took a very weird pleasure in reading them and reviewing them. I mean, keep that as the baseline here.

I finished the last in roughly four hours, and this is not only not fun, it's embarrassing, uncomfortable, and shitty in all ways and seriously, I don't believe Mercedes Lackey wrote this. At all.

Over one third of the book is a fucking earnest honest to God rewrite of Romeo and Juliet, complete with the fucking shitty Nurse, and I don't mean in the remix/deconstruction/parody level or even someone who understand what stories are or how words work. This is a rewrite in which a fourteen year old girl, Violetta (Juliet) is slut shamed for daydreaming and called a female dog bitch by her dad and Brand (Romeo) magically teh last few pages becomes a psychopath who tries to kill a miniature dog.

I want to repeat this--Brand, who until this point was kind of a careless Romeo-esque--tried to kill a tiny dog because he's actually evil and was actually plotting all this time to marry Violetta and kill all of both their families. Because reasons.

This is horrible, earnest, honest to god This Is How It Should Have Happened Let This Teach You a Lesson About Being Romantic and Violetta--fourteen, people, she acts like a little girl who likes to read romantic poetry--is fucked over and lectured by everyone, but that's okay because Amily is going to empower her or something and teach her fighting skills.

This is a bad, bad, terribly written book period, with a bad, bad, bad plotline and I don't know what I read but I hate it. There is nothing--and I do mean nothing--that makes this worth reading and I wish I hadn't; this is actually causing me issues with Valdemar and I unironically love all things Valdemar. That was uncomfortable as shit just to read, and thinking about it is gross. Whoever ghostwrote this should never be allowed near a keyboard ever.

Dude, even Todd McCaffrey's butchering of Pern didn't bother me this much. Shitty horrific sure, but it didn't cause active nausea.

I don't think I've loathed a book like this before quite so much. I feel betrayed. The person who wrote about Kerowyn and Talia and Tarma and even the later icky Elspeth is not the person who wrote this.

I need a drink. I actually want to see if I can forget this one.
Briefly surfing from my blanket fort of bronchitis and Robitussin to update. I posted to AO3 last night. (Note: Everyone in my household is sick or pregnant. Or at work today, granted. Casa de Seperis is the Plague House and my doctor can't see me until tomorrow morning. Yes, I am a little high right now and coughing is my new job.)

Title: It's the Stars that Lie, 12/12
Author: Seperis
Series: Down to Agincourt, Book 2
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: We fight, we lose, everyone dies anyway, I know. However, I don’t see why, if we're going to fight anyway, we shouldn't believe we're going to win.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdygrrrl and obscureraison for beta services, with advice from [livejournal.com profile] lillian13, [profile] scynneh, and [personal profile] norabombay.
Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] bratfarrar for the series name and summary from her sonnet Harry Takes the Field.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7

Series Links:
AO3 - Down to Agincourt
Book 1: Map of the World

Story Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7, Chapter 8, Chapter 9, Chapter 10, Chapter 11, Chapter 12
DW - Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7, Chapter 8, Chapter 9, Chapter 10, Chapter 11

it's the stars that lie, 12/12 )
Title: It's the Stars that Lie, 11/12
Author: Seperis
Series: Down to Agincourt, Book 2
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: We fight, we lose, everyone dies anyway, I know. However, I don’t see why, if we're going to fight anyway, we shouldn't believe we're going to win.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdygrrrl and obscureraison for beta services, with advice from [livejournal.com profile] lillian13, [profile] scynneh, and [personal profile] norabombay.
Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] bratfarrar for the series name and summary from her sonnet Harry Takes the Field.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7

Series Links:
AO3 - Down to Agincourt
Book 1: Map of the World

Story Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7, Chapter 8, Chapter 9, Chapter 10, Chapter 11
DW - Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7, Chapter 8, Chapter 9, Chapter 10

it's the stars that lie, 11/12 )
Title: It's the Stars that Lie, 10/12
Author: Seperis
Series: Down to Agincourt, Book 2
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: We fight, we lose, everyone dies anyway, I know. However, I don’t see why, if we're going to fight anyway, we shouldn't believe we're going to win.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdygrrrl and obscureraison for beta services, with advice from [livejournal.com profile] lillian13, [profile] scynneh, and [personal profile] norabombay.
Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] bratfarrar for the series name and summary from her sonnet Harry Takes the Field.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7

Series Links:
AO3 - Down to Agincourt
Book 1: Map of the World

Story Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7, Chapter 8, Chapter 9, Chapter 10
DW - Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7, Chapter 8, Chapter 9

it's the stars that lie, 10/12 )
Duolingo added Danish, Dutch, and Irish to the beta language list for English speakers (for non-English speakers, there are others as well). As Irish sounded interesting, I decided to test it and see what happened.

Here's what I learned:

1.) Spanish infiltrates English speakers in Texas like you have no idea.

I didn't have any idea how much until I began on Irish and failed so utterly when in Spanish I did the first ten sections in like, a day, including repeats when I inexplicably didn't get full hearts in every lesson and I was anal about that. I'd go back and redo ones just to get full hearts and sulk if I missed something. Yes, I do that. Even the most rampant English-only speaker living in a border state cannot help but absorb the principles of the language at least in basic vocabulary.

(Interesting note: you're more likely to pick up a lot of it if you're lower/working class than middle class, due to migrant and undocumented immigrant labor. My dad wouldn't admit it to save his life, but he understood more Spanish than I did since he worked construction and I heard him talking to his coworkers, so come on. My mom didn't pick up much as a caseworker because she worked in a small town, but when I was a clerk and then a caseworker in Austin, my Spanish went high conversational within six months, and I could interview in it fairly well when needed.)

I tested this in French and Portuguese as well: French I can get two sections without noticeable effort (letter combinations start hurting me here), Portuguese three or four (Portuguese sounds to me like Spanish spoken at the back of the throat, and that's the part that throws me off). Irish--three repetitions for one lesson (One. Lesson) to get full hearts and honest to God I sweated through it.

2.) Irish is really different.

Yes, all languages are different, but this is a different-different for me as a primary English speaker and my language familiarity. If you dropped me in Mexico, I could likely fairly quickly get myself food, lodging, a bathroom, and directions to anywhere, and could make some very sketchy jokes with my new friends and probably carry on a fair conversation about my life and times (you'd be surprised how much you know when that's your only language option). If you dropped me in Finland, I could do the same but less conversation and more profanity because my host brother and boyfriend were good about teaching me that. My French would fail, no lie, because French, but I could eventually work out what I needed to say.

In Ireland, should I be without English speakers, Ithim úll, I eat an apple. Ithim an úll, I eat the apple. And I know the 't' will be silent. So I'm good for describing my action with the apple. That's it, and I'm currently I'm on the fourth section. Unless I happen to have a pad of paper and I can totally write out my drink choices sú úll and sú oráiste, apple or orange juice and uisce, water. Go me. I can't say any of them to save my life.

My first cousin is a linguist and polyglot, but all hers are the Romance languages, though she has a working understanding of a few others. If I remember correctly, her waterloos were (forgive generalities), South Asian (specifically I think it was Chinese that threw her off the most, but I can't be more specific). She adapted, but that was where she hit her first serious wall on comprehension, and as this is a woman who was trilingual before she began college and finished her degree in two years, yeah.

If I'm right--and I'm pretty sure I am--mine is anything that uses the alphabet I know in ways I don't understand (goddamn phonics). I still have the entire Cyrillic alphabet effectively memorized and never had a problem reading or understanding Russian at the level that Irish is bothering me. My roommate in college was Syrian-American and was bilingual in Arabic and English, and I never had a problem with what she taught me--this shape makes this sound and those sounds make this word, I could read it later and recognize the word without a major hiccup. (I can't do it now, but at one time I could say several truly indecent things and ask for a beer or water.)

It's like French (fucking French): those letter combinations that don't sound like I think they should (I wrote an essay about me and French) why do you hate me? I blame this on phonics.

3.) Retention is a problem written.

Not Irish to English; that I nail every time. English to Irish is giving me problems, which makes sense. Ithim, itheann, I eat, (he or she) eats isn't hard to recognize. In fact, none of the verb conjugations are hard to recognize and translate, it's just remembering the root and adding the conjugation is because of the slim/broad rule.

This is where I discover I don't like things that are too regular too soon (blame English, we don't do regular, we do exceptions). I don't trust last root vowel matching to get the ending, and I go through, not kidding, a three point series of questions to myself before I finally accept yes, this is a regular freaking verb why are you doing this to yourself? I don't know, but I still have to stop and go okay ith has a 'i' therefore slim ending 'eann' Itheann move on now after point one "what ending goes here, it can't be that simple" and "no, really, it can't be that simple".

This is the 'to eat' verb, for goodness sake. This is how I get an apple in Ireland.

4.) Retention is a huge problem listening.

This is where my phonics training fails until I internalize the letter combination pronunciations (this will take a while, I don't do well at this in my native tongue for fuck's sake)(for which we can blame English stealing all the words)(why didn't English steal more Irish?????????????????).

The secondary problem with this is that this is in beta, and while all the oral uses a real human voice--which is fantastic for clarity, btw, you can easily hear and repeat what they're saying, no problem at all--not all the oral parts are added yet, as this is, again, in beta. So sometimes, you get the word leabhar but not the pronunciation for maybe several questions after that (or a different lesson). Hint: for an English speaker, it sounds nothing like it looks, except that it definitely starts with an 'l' and ends with an 'r'. Uisce, no matter how many times I hear it--and I listened to the same sentence with it in there about a dozen times straight--will not register when I hear it again. Unless it's a sentence about drinking and then I know if it starts with a 'b' it's milk, an 'f' is wine, and the other one is uisce.

5.) My reading retention is shockingly good.

This shouldn't surprise me, but it always throws me a little to realize how textual I really am. And that has been a problem; I can pretty much force-pass the lessons on guesswork on the strength of translating Irish to English and slide by the rest with short-term memorization, but finishing with four hearts every time means I have to pass every question both written and oral and the difference is painfully obvious on how long I spend listening to the same sentence over and over until I can work out the words by more than first letter and context guessing (which also works). Or slowly, painfully pushing English to Irish. And honestly, retention of the sounds has to be a priority, which is annoying me. I'm used to flying through basics and I keep going back to re-run all the early lessons before I start a new one to retain the sounds correctly.

Why I like the beta languages innovations:

The Irish language has portals (this was not there for the other English to X courses) and when you start a new section, there are notes relevant to the lessons below, not limited to the explanation of the slender/broad conjugations, a complete list of pronouns, and some very useful grammar and terminology. I read it, did the lessons several times, read it, did the lessons, and slowly it came together but far better than if it left me on my own (Spanish I don't need it; Irish oh God yes, please). It's super useful once you accept in your heart that no, those letters will not sound like that and live with it.

I wish--desperately--that US schools did more foreign language training, though I do get historically why we didn't and why it's become a thing only recently to start pushing it earlier (Child's school starts in primary, I think).

I will say this: I reward myself with Spanish lessons and boy, I feel smart then. Four hearts, listening, speaking, reading, writing, watch me get all the hearts. Several times, even.

So anyone else try the other beta languages yet? I'm curious about Dutch and Danish. Also, if anyone else ends up in Irish, tell me! Especially how you nailed uisce. Seriously, this is haunting me Why won't it stick?
Title: It's the Stars that Lie, 9/12
Author: Seperis
Series: Down to Agincourt, Book 2
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: We fight, we lose, everyone dies anyway, I know. However, I don’t see why, if we're going to fight anyway, we shouldn't believe we're going to win.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdygrrrl and obscureraison for beta services, with advice from [livejournal.com profile] lillian13, [profile] scynneh, and [personal profile] norabombay.
Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] bratfarrar for the series name and summary from her sonnet Harry Takes the Field.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7

Series Links:
AO3 - Down to Agincourt
Book 1: Map of the World

Story Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7, Chapter 8, Chapter 9
DW - Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7, Chapter 8

it's the stars that lie, 9/12 )
Title: It's the Stars that Lie, 8/12
Author: Seperis
Series: Down to Agincourt, Book 2
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: We fight, we lose, everyone dies anyway, I know. However, I don’t see why, if we're going to fight anyway, we shouldn't believe we're going to win.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdygrrrl and obscureraison for beta services, with advice from [livejournal.com profile] lillian13, [profile] scynneh, and [personal profile] norabombay.
Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] bratfarrar for the series name and summary from her sonnet Harry Takes the Field.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7

Series Links:
AO3 - Down to Agincourt
Book 1: Map of the World

Story Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7, Chapter 8
DW - Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7

it's the stars that lie, 8/12 )
Title: It's the Stars that Lie, 7/12
Author: Seperis
Series: Down to Agincourt, Book 2
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: We fight, we lose, everyone dies anyway, I know. However, I don’t see why, if we're going to fight anyway, we shouldn't believe we're going to win.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdygrrrl and obscureraison for beta services, with advice from [livejournal.com profile] lillian13, [profile] scynneh, and [personal profile] norabombay.
Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] bratfarrar for the series name and summary from her sonnet Harry Takes the Field.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7

Series Links:
AO3 - Down to Agincourt
Book 1: Map of the World

Story Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7
DW - Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6

it's the stars that lie, 7/12 )
I got the most realistic, coolest, most meaningful spam ever and it had everything; atrocities, evils of wealth, illness, dead husbands, life insurance, cancer (ovarian, even), children, one of the south Africa country (yes, really), and adoption (ha! didn't see that coming, did you?).

At my work email. So no penis enlargement today.

My duckling at work is from Cameroon, and every once in a while he breaks into evangelism on his country of birth, and therefore we look at Google World at every inch of Cameroon while he finds youtube videos because he thinks it's funny to start me off with Cameroon English that unexpectedly breaks into French (I automemorize lyrics and he told me once I was the best he'd ever heard at mispronouncing French so well that it sounded like a whole new (very sad) language, so you know, I win for that).

This is related; this is neither talent nor skill, I've mentioned this before, it's not even useful, but more like having the ability to spit Guinness World book record--I realized the probable reason why I never had a problem spelling anyone's names on our work board if I saw it once (our developers are from India or Nepal generally, so very few Western-oriented or Korean or Vietnamese, the latter two were communities in the right zip codes for my office to handle when I was a caseworker, yes, it's that random) or--historically--always got my written Russian homework flawless in class even if Russia itself might cry if it heard me speak the language. Also, given a list of any number of words and meaning once, I could use them perfectly in context and never miss spelling them by a letter, but if you do not tell me right then how to pronounce them--I mean right then--I will never pronounce them right in my head and this will follow me forever when I say them.

Not many of you probably know or care much about the education of children in the US being a thing that is debated hotly when it comes to teaching them to read; or you might, so you know every few years, they switch between Fun With Phonics and whole word learning. You want to watch a bloodbath, get any group of educators together and throw that out; if these were the days of duels, gloves would be slapping everywhere and dawn would be the new prime time for drama viewing.

My class was very Fun with Phonics (this changed and changed back every few years) and because of that I will shove a glove in your ass if you say it's not the best forever, but there's a price to be paid for teaching kids to sound out shit first.

1.) You learn adults are fuckers who fuck with you very early with 'the'.

That's the thing about phonics as reading; almost all the word at primary level are fine, but that's an article and you cannot get away from it. A lot of teachers roll with it, and some have to have taken that into consideration early on, but my most vivid memory of the kindergarten education process was going over and over to my teacher because I trusted her and I couldn't believe she meant it when she said 'the' did not sound like 'tuh-huh-eh'.

She just told me the entire alphabet, letters have sounds, sounds have meaning (there was a blackboard and a pointer), this can be expressed on a page beneath the cute picture of a girl (blonde, always fucking blonde) playing with a dog (brown, very). I nailed that shit, and it was true, all of it...except 'tuh-huh-eh' was not 'the', what is this bullshit?

Once I accepted 'the' into my heart as my phonics betrayer (it took a full year and we won't talk about how much that delayed literacy but again, a year), it got better; all the 'th' and 'ch' were allowed in my soul and eventually silent 'e's would join them along with all the others, but the scar of betrayal never really healed, Mrs. Figueroa.

2.) Your spelling will forever be fantastic except for all the ways it won't be and it's because of France.

Spelling was easy kindergarten through third grade, because again most words are phonetically consistent at that level, or so close that visual plus audio once and you're fine. Except.

You meet 'beau' and fuck everything ever. Buh-eh-ah-uuuuuuuthefuckisthis that is nothing like 'bow', that's buh-oh-wuh and we have one of those b-o-w bu-oh-wuh not b-e-a-u buh-eh-ah-uuuuuutheydon'tdothis, Mrs F didn't lie that much, did she?

...French, you say? Really.

Xenophobia is terrible and American exceptionlism is very wrong, but ask yourself; how many kids were perhaps influenced by getting a 99 but not a hundred because the French language exists and didn't get a golden star but a silver one--a silver one--on the paper when they got it back and an 'x' by that word? Not that I'm still bitter, just saying.

It might be the Norman conquest of Britain in 1066 causing the English language to be supplanted by Norman French, not even real French because fuck French we got the discount edition, causing only the lower classes to use English for centuries while French, being so very (discount) French, stuck its words helter-skelter into every conversation until Chaucer existed, married John of Gaunt's sister-in-law, and set the world right with many tales, and French--fucking French--eventually went away but those words stuck. English needed those because its development had been slowed, we had to catch up fast (German was mocking us with its vocabulary and Spanish was grinning very Catholicly), so we needed words and fast. What to do?

Fine, English said, picking up a sword, righteousness, a Revolutionary War, and a future Webster's dictionary, unrevised: shit just got real. Time to level the fuck up.

English takes all the words, all of them, the ones you wanted and the ones you didn't, sorry, but like a wolf who tastes the hot blood of a fresh kill for the first time (language is tasty indeed, nothing like it), it wants more.

B-o-w and b-e-a-u are 'buh-oh-wuh' and discrete plus discreet because Latin or Greek same meaning different context mostly, watch English laugh at your protests, bring it on, we have the 'c' and the 'k' and we like it, same sound but sometimes not, a-e-i-o-u and sometimes y because fuck you English does what it wants with consonants and vowels. Fish and fiche sound the same but mean different things, you want more? English does, too. Did you see phonics is ph but sounds like 'f'? We even have 'q' right there in the alphabet and it needs to get laid by 'u' to make a sound but fuck if we care, it's our letter and have fun with it. 'X' took many sounds for its own and uses them all and we let it because we like rebels.

Also, Latin? I split an infinitive every day just for you. And English told me to say 'hi' and fuck you.

Silver star. One. Word. Wrong.

3.) You will realize quite early that writing is better than talking for a lot of reasons and fuck everything.

Phonics works for many words and most kids will roll with it, but that doesn't change the severe cognitive dissonance that will haunt some few. Among that group will be those that can deal, and then there's the ones that have to live life with oral readings where you will be constantly translating b-e-a-u to 'buh-oh-wuh' because William the Conqueror was a douche but with many different words and that wears on you and sanity may not hold out long.

Reading and writing become havens of wonder because pronunciation wasn't fucking with us, which is why certain essays are college level vocabulary (content hilarious) while long division is still a mystery Mrs Young stop fucking with me you want me to carry what?

Writing is the perfect medium when you learn sarcasm as well (once you learn the definition of subtlety and forgive the b for being inexplicably silent and even now often forget), and a generation met the internet--all text, all the time--with the advanced tools necessary to troll the fuck out of it.

So I can spell anything I see at most twice (three times over five syllables, phonics is fun but also set to a four four beat to learn), but English/French youtube videos autolyric memoriation means I will sing things I can't pronounce and my duckling French speaker thinks it's funny because I can't pronounce fucking French.

People say they want to go to Paris all the time; oh, so do I, you have no idea.

I fly into that country, mispronounce 'Bien' awkwardly beneath pitying smiles, tell a cab driver three times where to go while he rolls his eyes at Americans because I took French while in Finland and I still couldn't get it right, go to the Eiffel Tower and climb to the very top.

And I will say: "William the Conqueror was a douche, I will split every infinitive I see, and b-e-a-u is not fucking 'buh-oh-wuh'!"

And give myself a gold star.

Next: Normandy. I can't wait.
You know, this isn't right I'm sure, but a thought exercise on why in the movie Splash in the eighties, Madison met a woman who told her one, Annie Hall was so passe and two, her daughter was so lucky because she was anorexic started this. believe it. or. not.

ruben, gout, mcdonalds, sugar, and the working woman in time and space: a reflection on the meaning of organ meats in the western hemisphere above the equator is that too vague? also, wal-mart. and thematic not-trees )
You ever have one of those days where it hits you like brand new that there is no way out of this? I can't think of one, and I have tried and tried.

This is human nature at it's most fundamental, I get that, and I get the rage on body shaming. I get that, it sucks when a woman doesn't conform to teh ideal and even more when she really doesn't, especially when it comes to weight. It's a nightmare, more of one that's in progress since birth for a woman, because the closer you get to the ideal the less nightmarish it gets, much like an improvement from being boiled in oil and now enjoy the Elysian Fields of slow strangulation: I myself aspire to an upgrade to dropping my oil temperature ten entire degrees and fuck the bitches who are gasping for air over there and tell my torturer how awesome the temperature is and those sluts over there created their own deep fryer life, turn it up by five degrees on them, right? and maybe I get another five degree drop because I am a fine daughter of the patriarchy and women's body's are public property because that's what they told me and they like me better now, five fucking degrees lower, fuck yeah, I'm almost in. To potential slow strangulation, one day, if I'm very, very good.

Or I might say "...this room has no door. Why doesn't it have a door?"

Context and original post: Maybe a 'Small' Sandwich

On an emotional level, I do get this; this is women's bodies and my God welcome to Hell there. On a vital self-awareness level, however, the gut-punch is the punchline at the same time: you will never, ever be good enough, and in case anyone, anywhere, thinks that even for a second, we as women have a duty to stop that shit.

a copy of my response here )
Title: It's the Stars that Lie, 6/12
Author: Seperis
Series: Down to Agincourt, Book 2
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: We fight, we lose, everyone dies anyway, I know. However, I don’t see why, if we're going to fight anyway, we shouldn't believe we're going to win.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdygrrrl and obscureraison for beta services, with advice from [livejournal.com profile] lillian13, [profile] scynneh, and [personal profile] norabombay.
Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] bratfarrar for the series name and summary from her sonnet Harry Takes the Field.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7

Series Links:
AO3 - Down to Agincourt
Book 1: Map of the World

Story Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6
DW - Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5

it's the stars that lie, 6/12 )
Title: It's the Stars that Lie, 5/12
Author: Seperis
Series: Down to Agincourt, Book 2
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: We fight, we lose, everyone dies anyway, I know. However, I don’t see why, if we're going to fight anyway, we shouldn't believe we're going to win.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdygrrrl and obscureraison for beta services, with advice from [livejournal.com profile] lillian13, [profile] scynneh, and [personal profile] norabombay.
Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] bratfarrar for the series name and summary from her sonnet Harry Takes the Field.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7

Series Links:
AO3 - Down to Agincourt
Book 1: Map of the World

Story Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5
DW - Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4

it's the stars that lie, 5/12 )
Okay, I can count on one hand the number of Henry V fanfics I've read in my life, literally. However, this one is a sonnet, which I can count on one finger because holy shit, a sonnet:

Harry Takes the Field by [livejournal.com profile] bratfarrar - Henry V - Harry's thoughts before Agincourt and what was before him.

The funny thing is, when I first saw in it in her LJ, I didn't really read she wrote it (because I was just skimming my flist and came back to read it) and after reading it thought, ohh, I like this, I want to use that line for my title--as I needed one for this series--and then read back and realized she wrote it and felt oh so foolish and also holy shit a sonnet. About the spiritual successor of the Black Prince himself and the hero of Agincourt. (First cousin once removed if I remember my Edward III's and Philippa's extensive family tree; that was a lot of sons there.)

(College taught me via the brute force method to appreciate poetry; having to read and write an analysis of one three times a week teaches you to either loathe anything that could rhyme (or rhythm) or love it and if it's the written word, love will win if I kill myself doing it.)

Agincourt is hugely romantic; it's got everything: terrible odds, a single brave shining warrior, do or die, and knowing the history now, a (probably) insane French king, his (possibly) manipulative wife (the reason why Henry VI of England was crazypants depending on if you believe which historian on the relative sanity of Catherine de Valois), and all of English history riding on a single battle fought by a very young king who was truly the only one who believed that he could win.

(I have a very similar reaction to reading about Waterloo, Caesar crossing the Rubicon, and Joan of Arc's entire life.)

Me and Shakespeare have a very complicated relationship: I used to think he was hugely overrated and annoying and it hurts me in various ways to admit now he's not and it actually makes me enraged when anyone says that about him now because wtf it's Shakespeare!!!, which is so lowering you have no idea. It's just masochistic and annoying to feel so conflicted about your own love story with a dead guy, and a little uncomfortable, too.

(Beside the point. It's almost time for my yearly Shakespeare play and I still have no idea which one to throw myself at. I'm thinking Othello at this point; it's nice and obvious and I know the plot so why not? I've been putting it off for some reason, I think Richard III keeps upsetting me.)
Title: It's the Stars that Lie, 4/12
Author: Seperis
Series: Down to Agincourt, Book 2
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: We fight, we lose, everyone dies anyway, I know. However, I don’t see why, if we're going to fight anyway, we shouldn't believe we're going to win.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdygrrrl and obscureraison for beta services, with advice from [livejournal.com profile] lillian13, [profile] scynneh, and [personal profile] norabombay.
Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] bratfarrar for the series name and summary from her sonnet Harry Takes the Field.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7

Series Links:
AO3 - Down to Agincourt
Book 1: Map of the World

Story Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4
DW - Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3

it's the stars that lie, 4/12 )
So just seeing how this sounds:

Vacation with entire extended immediate family including: mother, both sisters, sister's husband, sister's MIL, sister's three kids, other sister's kid, mother's parents, me, and Child.

In one house on the beach.

Okay, that does in fact look terrifying when seen in print. I was wondering. There will be the gulf and a confection store that makes their own fudge. I'm clinging very hard to that right now.

Wait, there's more:

Child in his infinite wisdom at some point in the past--who knows when--broke a tooth but couldn't be assed to tell me or care until Friday evening, when the entire left side of his face rounded out not unlike a ripe tomato. At first--not knowing the tooth sitch because who hides tooth pain? How?--I thought it was an unexpected reaction to a topical anesthetic we keep for those times you bite the inside of your cheek or poke yourself in the gum with a pencil which no, isn't something that happens to me because I have much better hand/eye coordination than that and will fight any comment to the contrary to the death if necessary or whatever. It became very clear, however, that it wasn't and he reluctantly admitted maybe there was a tooth that was bothering him maybe a little, which you don't say, ye who has lost any vestige of facial symmetry.

Saturday morning was spent frantically googling for a dentist open on Saturdays who took walk-ins or emergencies or both. Found one, who didn't have a time open and then listening to me start to dissolve into tears--seriously, over-ripened tomato Child, but not that color, it was unsettling--offered to fit him and for that will love her until the day I die. Fortunately--and this is literal--Child was still in pain and the appointment was in less than an hour, and even so, it was a bad ten minutes getting him dressed and to the vehicle while he protested--with asymmetry growing by the moment--that it didn't hurt that much and he was fine (I actually stopped to stare at him disbelievingly, wondering if the infection reached his brain already).

We shall not speak of what we discovered of Child's unbelievable lack of interest in what goes on in his own mouth (I whine when I poke my gum with a pencil, fine, judge away), but anyway, surprise, he broke a tooth and it got infected and how. So we left with antibiotics, painkillers, and a very serious speech that if he starts having vision problems to go to the ER immediately, which was one of those surreal moments where I stare at Child and Child acts totally shocked about how nature and infection work.

brief Child digression, for parents who haven't had to deal with this )

short family digression, related )

After this adventurous weekend, I wonder why there aren't more dentists who decide to specialize in 'emergency' and 'weekends' only because seriously, they could probably make a killing doing nothing else. Every weekend dentist I found (very not many) wasn't just packed, but stacking them up in the waiting room. I didn't even bother with trying to negotiate my (annoying) insurance and paid cash, I was that desperate and from the looks of those waiting with me and Child, that wasn't unique. And why isn't there a Dental ER somewhere?

Note: Child still looks asymmetrical but much better, and is hilariously following almost exactly the dentist's prediction on how long it would take for the swelling to go down and the pain to taper off.
Title: It's the Stars that Lie, 3/12
Author: Seperis
Series: Down to Agincourt, Book 2
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: We fight, we lose, everyone dies anyway, I know. However, I don’t see why, if we're going to fight anyway, we shouldn't believe we're going to win.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdygrrrl and obscureraison for beta services, with advice from [livejournal.com profile] lillian13, [profile] scynneh, and [personal profile] norabombay.
Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] bratfarrar for the series name and summary from her sonnet Harry went to Agincourt.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7

Series Links:
AO3 - Down to Agincourt
Book 1: Map of the World

Story Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3
DW - Chapter 1, Chapter 2

it's the stars that lie, 3/12 )
Child's slowly growing rage at Teen Wolf for Derek's man-(wolf-?)pain is possibly the best thing about the show I don't watch. I don't need to, honestly; once a week, come the apocalypse, Child drops down disconsolately on the patio swing to talk about his epic feelings about Derek and Stiles and how they're being epically abused by $whoever.

One of the (hilarious) advantages of growing up fannish is he's on a good balance of way too invested and overenthusiastic (entertainment forever) but cynical as hell because he's been through All the Ship Wars Ever by proxy, so everything is old news as far as he's concerned.

And then there's this (semi-verbatim, this was weird):

Child: it's like the Ray wars, mom.
(note: using mom is always, always a warning sign.)
Me: ....sterek is like the Ray Wars? Wait, how?
Child: Yeah, it's like--
Me: I wasn't in the Ray Wars. We started watching way after the Ray Wars.
Me: Hold on, were you even born then? Potty trained? Able to argue with me?
Child: ...what does that have to do with it?

I'm sorry, I didn't find out how Sterek is just like the Ray Wars, I'll get on that, but seriously? To be fair to him, he was around during my ranting John Sheppard days, so yeah, that might have helped form his sensibilities.

Other random conversation (this is partially verbatim, because wow, that was a bad moment):

Child: you have any ideas for a name? I need a new one.
Me: Those are personal, but--wait. Why do you need a new one?
Child: Reasons.
Me: What did you do?
Child: Nothing.
Me: You know I can check tumblr, right?
Child: Not that one.
Me: The secret one I'm not supposed to know about?
Child: ....no, it's--nevermind.
Me: It's not xxxxxxx one, is it?
Child: Stop breaking into my computer.
Me: Lock your screen once in a while.

(note: he actually didn't do anything, he just gets bored with consistency. I'm not sure if I'm relieved or disappointed. Also, his password security is getting much better. Who says invasion of adolescent privacy has no practical benefits?)

I wonder what it's like to be the teenage fanson of a fanparent. Knowing fanparent is out there somewhere, anywhere, separated from you by three degrees of tumblr or less at all times, hideously aware of her hovering presence and getting recced 'oomg did you read this!1!!!!' written by her or her bffs (this happens), and horribly, horribly aware she could show up in your fandom at any moment and may do it just to fuck with her fankid because why not?

I feel like I've been waiting for him to hit this level of self-awareness and horror all my life.

Dear Fanparents,

This is so much fun, you have no idea.

-seperis
In case anyone missed this:

Satanic Temple seeks Hobby Lobby-style exemption from anti-abortion laws

Thank you, yahoo news; I can state with perfect honesty that I didn't see this coming.
Title: It's the Stars that Lie, 2/12
Author: Seperis
Series: Down to Agincourt, Book 2
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: We fight, we lose, everyone dies anyway, I know. However, I don’t see why, if we're going to fight anyway, we shouldn't believe we're going to win.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdygrrrl and obscureraison for beta services, with advice from [livejournal.com profile] lillian13, [profile] scynneh, and [personal profile] norabombay.
Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] bratfarrar for the series name and summary from her sonnet Harry went to Agincourt.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7

Series Links:
AO3 - Down to Agincourt
Book 1: Map of the World

Story Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2
DW - Chapter 1

it's the stars that lie, 2/12 )
Title: It's the Stars that Lie, 1/12
Author: Seperis
Series: Down to Agincourt, Book 2
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: We fight, we lose, everyone dies anyway, I know. However, I don’t see why, if we're going to fight anyway, we shouldn't believe we're going to win.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdygrrrl and obscureraison for beta services, with advice from [livejournal.com profile] lillian13, [profile] scynneh, and [personal profile] norabombay.
Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] bratfarrar for the series name and summary from her sonnet Harry went to Agincourt.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7

Series Links:
AO3 - Down to Agincourt
Book 1: Map of the World

Story Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1

it's the stars that lie, 1/12 )
I finally figured out how to make Amazon stop reccing me music I don't like--buy it.

Wait, let me finish: once you do, you listen to that shit until you love it or your ears bleed and you dark master asks for your attendance at the throne of Hell. It works. He lets you use DW!

Not that it went that far: I listened to it straight through and either I was wrong or I am a master-class self-Stockholmer and I should be paid to teach other people how to do it.

Anyway, music for the week: it's all Stockholm, all the time here.

Pompeii by Bastille. I get the framing device isn't actually the destruction of Pompeii via volcano, but if you imagine a whole bunch of toga'ed Romans line dancing to this while ash rains down from above--and talking about being an optimist about the volcano about to bury them--close your eyes!--it's kind of amazing.

This is part of my Bounce playlist, which includes Katy Perry's Roar, Fun's We Are Young, Fefe Dobson's Don't Let It Go to Your Head, and Good Time by Owl City. I don't ask why anymore. I put this on repeat, I start feeling the vague desire to dance in the parking lot at work. And by vague, I mean the east parking lot out of sight of the windows, like a one-woman Dancing Plague, which as well all know ended really well for Strasbourg.

Today all the SSNs in our testing database vanished; right this moment, a Dancing Plague would be doing me a favor.
A general apology--I was answering a comment in AO3 and checked my related works link because it's there and awesome, and there were several items that weren't approved. I approved them all and I apologize for the weirdness to those who were wondering what the hell.

Also! Because this is so cool I share these things:

Adjustment, War Games, and Domestically Inclined, translated by Loquor into Chinese. My Star Trek reboot series in Chinese; it's amazing.

Being monolingual--my Spanish isn't nearly good enough to even qualify for half a point there--translation is miraculous to me in general.

While working in Duolingo on my Spanish, I translated part of the Minecraft player's guide into English, which now qualifies me to upgrade the art of translation to magic. It has to be; there's no other explanation, and boy, I feel like a loser feeling all exhausted after translating some really simple paragraphs of a Spanish article on hockey. God I hope it was hockey, now that I'm thinking about it.

...I'm going to go check now. Just in case.
Watching the dashcon tag on tumblr and the FFA threads is now a lifestyle choice. And now ONTD has picked it up.

In case anyone wants to catch up (vaguely in chronological order of posting):
First FFA Thread on Dashcon
Second FFA Thread on Dashcon
ONTD on Dashcon
Dashcon Tag on Tumblr

Personal favorite quote from FFA:
From browsing the tag, the people at Dashcon have entered into this peculiar headspace wherein one more normally finds hostages and cult victims: the backlash has been so severe that anyone who even had a good moment and lacks certain critical self-check features is now in "extreme Con defense mode."


Starts with $17,000 and goes down from there. Also, a ball wading pool and bouncy castle.

ETA: From anonymous commenter: Dashcon owner about Dashcon, posted in January - I can't tell if anonymous is defense or prosecution here, but it's an interesting link.
Title: Map of the World, 11/11
Author: Seperis
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: The world's already over and they're already dead. All they're doing now is marking time until the end.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdy_grrrl for beta above and beyond. For two years, even. Set after the events in 5.4 The End.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7
Warnings: Please see end of fic for warnings.

Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7, Chapter 8, Chapter 9, Chapter 10, Chapter 11
DW - Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7, Chapter 8, Chapter 9, Chapter 10

map of the world, 11/11 )
warnings )
final notes )
Currently reading Top Ten Most Venomous Snakes, where in an unsurprising turn of events, Australia holds five slots including one and two. Because Australia.

(Africa wins as Most Terrifying Snake I Have Ever Obsessively Read About My God Twenty Minutes????? WTF Evolution WHY?)

My only real comfort here is that, should I be near one of these snakes at any time, I don't have to worry about dying within twenty minutes or less (thanks, Black Mamba!); I will have a heart attack right there and die. So you know, there's that.
So today at work was Foodapalooza, or Fourth of July (minus two), which as usual was a gut busting success where the food coma started at 10:30 AM and proceeded for the rest of the day.

Generally, participation is always high when we do these, because one, everyone likes to eat, and two, we have a lot of dietary restrictions (kosher, vegetarian, vegan, and no beef) so meat dishes are discreet from vegetables whenever possible. This also means we have not just variety but massive amounts of each variety because the universe loves us when it comes to food.

Which is how I ended up eating my weight in fried chicken, a chickpea dish (whole chickpea, not hummus) I would kill people to get to, lemon rice, chicken enchiladas, a tangy lentil mix that looked like refried beans and tasted like what I'm sure Heaven serves in the buffet line, a two gallon crock pot of cheese dip, and a huge massive tupperware dish of a spicy rice and vegetable dish I didn't get the name of but will bear more offspring to find again. That was Round One, by the way: we won't speak of rounds two, three, four, or the Holy Shit Dessert Are You Kidding Well Okay Sure course, and the Drink and Dip Annex where the sodas tea, chips, and dip were stored.

Like I said, participation is high, and we had stealth people from different units helping us get this done. We just feel as a group that it's an insult to leave a single item of food in a dish, you know? We don't let that happen.

In other news, Duolingo is adding Irish to it's roster of languages soon as well as Dutch. The only reason I'm mentioning this is for the Dutch; the day I found out about it, I was talking to a coworker who--completely randomly--told me she wanted to learn Dutch because she and her husband were retiring to the Netherlands when they were ready to retire. She was interested to find out this.

The universe is strange, and I'm in food post-coma; lethargic and vaguely wanting cookies. It happens.
Google Now on my phone just gave me an update card on how much I walked in June, based on my device's location. In so many ways I find this upsetting and weird, not least of which is the realization I don't walk much. Though that's still below "GOOGLE IS WATCHING ME WALK?"

....level with me, anyone else starting to wonder if The Matrix was actually a documentary and the next two movies in the series were released just to make us dismiss the entire convoluted plotline and not realize that is our lives?

I'd say this was bad, but then I just realized--

1.) I can fly and do kung fu.
2.) A full length leather coat is in my immediate future.
3.) There's a very good chance Laurence Fishburne will show up soon.

Dear Robot overlords,

THANK YOU.

(also: seriously, watching me walk? Why?)

Love,
Seperis
Title: Map of the World, 10/11
Author: Seperis
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: The world's already over and they're already dead. All they're doing now is marking time until the end.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdy_grrrl for beta above and beyond. For two years, even. Set after the events in 5.4 The End.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7

Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7, Chapter 8, Chapter 9, Chapter 10
DW - Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7, Chapter 8, Chapter 9

map of the world, 10/11 )
Title: Map of the World, 9/11
Author: Seperis
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: The world's already over and they're already dead. All they're doing now is marking time until the end.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdy_grrrl for beta above and beyond. For two years, even. Set after the events in 5.4 The End.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7

Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7, Chapter 8, Chapter 9
DW - Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7, Chapter 8

map of the world, 9/11 )
Title: Map of the World, 8/11
Author: Seperis
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: The world's already over and they're already dead. All they're doing now is marking time until the end.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdy_grrrl for beta above and beyond. For two years, even. Set after the events in 5.4 The End.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7

Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7, Chapter 8
DW - Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7

map of the world, 8/11 )
Title: Map of the World, 7/11
Author: Seperis
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: The world's already over and they're already dead. All they're doing now is marking time until the end.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdy_grrrl for beta above and beyond. For two years, even. Set after the events in 5.4 The End.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7

Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7
DW - Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6

map of the world, 7/11 )
Note: Due to a coming change in my schedule for the next major release at work, posting will be sped up so I can be done in three weeks or less. Because major releases don't care about my carefully planned time management. As they hate me, I think.

Title: Map of the World, 6/11
Author: Seperis
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: The world's already over and they're already dead. All they're doing now is marking time until the end.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdy_grrrl for beta above and beyond. For two years, even. Set after the events in 5.4 The End.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7

Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6
DW - Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5

map of the world, 6/11 )
The Coming Gay Marriage Witch Hunt - this really is nothing new at all, but hilarious quote from worried homophobe:
Same-sex marriage is, of course, not the first issue to divide Americans. Slavery, segregation, and abortion led to civil war, vigilante violence, and massive protest movements.

But opponents of same-sex marriage say that even in those instances there was détente after passions cooled. One-time segregationists remained in the upper echelons of American public life through the 1990s. This time, opponents of same-sex marriage fear that supporters will not be happy until their side has been run out of polite society and forced to retract their previously held views.


I want to go on the record here, correct my interpretation if I'm reading this wrong: segregation/racism was a much better social movement because racists got to keep their social and political power for, count it, over a fucking century (according to the article). In polite society.

Jesus Christ, this is a crisis; people may not be invited to fucking tea because they're obnoxious. Let me weep.

Something struck me about this that's bothered me: it's the much touted right to be heard. It appears most often when people speaking Bullshit-esque are pouting about the language barrier that prevents people from caring what they have to say.

Much like the rights of trees who fall in the forest to make a sound, there is no fundamental right to be heard, because that would necessitate violating my God-given right to not have to listen. Free speech your ass out among the leaves, sunshine; I'm not hanging around the forest to listen.

I've spent the last two weeks learning Medicaid policy for the aged and disabled in which a sample case I worked allowed a man to enter a nursing home facility and receive Medicaid without even having to make a copay despite the fact his resources were upward of two hundred thousand dollars, while a woman who receives less than 1100 in RSDI total has to pay nine hundred dollars a month for the same thing.

When rich politicians talk about cutting welfare, they talk about welfare queens and single mothers and eighteen thousand kids each, but for some reason, they're very silent, very silent indeed, when it comes to the legal basis of how the wealthy can hide their money using special clauses in policy created specifically for them so when they need nursing home care or community care, they don't have to pay a thing toward it while a man or woman who have worked their asses off all their lives sometimes get denied the help they desperately need at the most vulnerable and fragile point of their lives.

Is this polite society?

You know, sorry, I ran out of tears; see, I'm worrying about actual real things, like my kid having the ability to get married and not be killed for being who he is, my mother being safe and well in her old age if God forbid she becomes fragile or ill, the current nightmare that is the job market, paying down my student loan and my credit report, and unnumbered elderly, disabled, and poor people who get denied help.

I don't understand the priorities of a life lived that can possibly, by any stretch of hte imagination, give a flying fuck about what a woman does with her own body to the point of trying to outlaw their access to it, about what people who you will probably never meet who may or may not be of the same sex entering into a legal union, how the color of someone's skin, their ethnicity, their country of origin, or their sex has any bearing whatsofuckingever on what kind of person they are, much less care so much that PACs and societies are created to combat it.

But all of that--all of that--makes more sense than an article where a homophobe is deeply, sincerely worried they won't get invited to the best parties.

Find a fucking forest and talk until you go hoarse, I don't give a shit; you want to be heard, say something worth breath.

Note: This has been a very enlightening two weeks of my life.
For reasons that don't need to be explored at this juncture, I am in need of someone who really likes academic communication theory--or possibly metacognition theory and cognitive neuroscience--who can tell me what this is and where to find it.

It's a theory that the act of writing is sometimes more than simply the expression of a thought in textual form, but the equivalent of the brain outsourcing some of the thinking process. There are thoughts that cannot be thought or even exist without the intervention of the written word. Writing isn't just organization, memory storage, or even clarification of thoughts that are already there; the act of writing is a requirement for the thought to even exist.

I remember reading about it in college (I don't remember the discipline it came out of, but I think its birth was out of cognitive theory and how the brain works), but there was an implication that once the ability to communicate with the written word is acquired, it (theoretically) increases the capacity for abstract thought because (possibly?) it's a way for the brain to communicate with itself that it can't accomplish without it.

I found some articles that hit on some of it, but the focus in most of them is the use of writing to expand existing thought and make connections between disparate ideas that are already there but require refinement, or the development of critical thinking skills, but not idea that the brain uses writing itself in the creation of thought process.

...Christ, I swear this is not the result of a mescaline and tequila night, though admittedly, I'd love the excuse.
Title: Map of the World, 5/11
Author: Seperis
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: The world's already over and they're already dead. All they're doing now is marking time until the end.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdy_grrrl for beta above and beyond. For two years, even. Set after the events in 5.4 The End.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7

Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5
DW - Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4

map of the world, 5/11 )
Title: Map of the World, 4/11
Author: Seperis
Codes: Dean/Castiel
Rating: R
Summary: The world's already over and they're already dead. All they're doing now is marking time until the end.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdy_grrrl for beta above and beyond. For two years, even. Set after the events in 5.4 The End.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7

Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4
DW - Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3

map of the world, 4/11 )
As my nieces got Frozen, I've involuntarily watched it about three times due to the fact that, as kids do, that goddamn movie was on repeat on the bluray player for like a week. Which is why against my will, Let It Go ended up on my playlist so I can massacre a C above high C when automemorization kicks in. Luckily, only the neighbors have been the victims of my need to express my freedom to create ice sculptures (in my mind) in the far north while actually living in Texas at ninety-one degrees in the shade. Because that's how I roll these days.

Other news: my other repeat-one song of the month:
UNKLE ft Moby - In a State/God Moving over the Faces of the Waters - it was part of a documentary vid on youtube and I hunted it down to get a clean copy, which this one is, for downloading-related purposes.

Training tomorrow. This is my idea of decompressing: sitting outside while surfing youtube and Wikipedia. If I end up reading about the cat genome project again something's gonna give.
Doing two months of MEPD training in two weeks means after the first week I have no idea what my name is anymore, but I can figure out eligibility for MSP programs with a pencil and a determined expression (and uh, a client).

This training isn't for caseworkers, but for the help desk staff who answer questions from caseworkers and other staff about problems they find with the eligibility program. Testing was offered slots in the class, so me and a coworker both signed up, and it's been deeply fascinating. Policy is fascinating, no lie; I had no idea there were so many kinds of burial resources, and not kidding, that section on resources was insane.

MEPD, in case anyone is curious, is Medicaid for the aged and disabled. Usually people think nursing homes (institutionalization), but that's only one type: among them are MSP (Medicare Share program) which pays the monthly premium on Medicares Part A and/or Part B, CAD, which is a program that gives home health care to clients if they don't qualify for MSP and the function of which is to delay or prevent institutionalization of clients but instead let them stay in their homes, CBA, all the SSI's, and several community based programs. Generally, nursing home care is the care of last resort if possible; the goal is to make it easier for clients to remain in their own homes. Interesting note: the elderly, even the very elderly, do much better at home than nursing homes, even very nice ones, and a lot of programs are geared to extend their time at home as much as humanly possible.

This is where I do my random reminder that if you live in Texas and want a job that I guarantee you will change lives every day you go to work and help people for whom you will be sometimes their last resort, consider applying for a Medicaid Eligibility Specialist or Texas Works Advisor position with HHSC.

Openings are here.

Generally, a college degree isn't necessary until you get to the higher manager and directorships. Starting with a clerical position can and will get you a heads-up within six months to caseworker (also, clerk is fun, no lie), and Worker III, which is just below supervisor, can be done in as little as two years and supervisor in three. And inter-agency hiring is legion; from there, there's pretty much an entire world of jobs with the state to make at least this part of the world a little better. Many jobs with HHSC prefer or require caseworker/eligibility specialist experience.

Training is two to three months; you go to class, eight hours a day, five days a week, where workers and specialists are guided through policy by trainers who were once caseworkers themselves--you don't memorize it, promise, we're not that cruel--and how to use the eligibility programs. By the time you're done with training, you will be able to take a pencil and a worksheet and calculate benefits for any program you've been trained in within ten minutes. Within one month on the job, you can read an application and know before you even start if they're likely to qualify and what they qualify for. I trained 10 years ago; I can still do it on a glance, though I need the income limits charts somewhere nearby. After one week of MEPD training, I can do it for CAS, MSP, and several of the waiver and post-SSI programs, though without the full two months, I wouldn't since it's slightly more complicated than that.

It's not a hard job, but it's one you have to learn. You'll be taught not only policy and how to use the programs we use to determine eligibility, but how to interview, how to look up and access information, what kind of questions to ask, and most importantly, the first thing I learned: my job is to approve people for benefits and get them the help they need. My training was to make sure I could do that the best I could.

After training, you'll be assigned to an office where you'll be given--and this will drive you crazy--two (or four) cases a day for two weeks, after which you go up to three or four (or six) for two weeks, and so on until you get to what's considered a full load. If you're like me, you'll start sneaking up to the front desk and stealing walk-ins within two days and secretly working them while your supervisor sighs and pretends not to notice. If you're in a call center, your supervisor won't ask questions; we're that overloaded.

Throughout your time on the job, you will be send to periodic training for changes in policy, in budgeting, federal law, et al.

We have high turnover; the caseload can be ridiculous, and working with the poor, the disabled, and the elderly can be difficult when you can't get them the help you know they need. However, this job is one of those I can say with certainty that you being there will assure more people get benefits the first time they apply. People get overloaded, there's too much to do and too little time to get it done; that's a problem. More people doing the job--you doing it--means that many more people get their benefits faster.

A lot of jobs will say you will be helping people. This one, you will literally be watching it happen as you do it. My caseload was between 10 and 18 people each day with an extra thirty or forty children's Medicaid I'd certify each month; during Katrina, I saw more than that. My approvals outnumbered my denials by a huge margin; every day, the world was made better by ten to eighteen people getting what they needed to live their lives.

That's 2,400 to 4,300 people a year whose lives you could be changing. You want to change the world, this is a very good way to start doing it.
Title: Map of the World, 3/11
Author: Seperis
Codes: Dean/Castiel, et al
Rating: R
Summary: The world's already over and they're already dead. All they're doing now is marking time until the end.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdy_grrrl for beta above and beyond. For two years, even. Set after the events in 5.4 The End.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7
Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3
DW - Chapter 1, Chapter 2

map of the world, 3/11 )
Child just started pasta on fire.

Pasta.

On fire.

Parenthood: totally worth it.
Very shallow barely spoiler under the cut:

seriously, shallow )
Apparently, Polar Vortices (I had to look up the plural, yes) cause amnesia, because I don't remember being allergic to everything, ever. I think I'm allergic to water.

...this is going to be a very long summer, with much sneezing and eucalyptus oil, per a coworker who swears this will cure all things. When I can smell it--once, twice between sneezes--it does have a pleasant fragrance.
Title: Map of the World, 2/11
Author: Seperis
Codes: Dean/Castiel, et al
Rating: R
Summary: The world's already over and they're already dead. All they're doing now is marking time until the end.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdy_grrrl for beta above and beyond. For two years, even. Set after the events in 5.4 The End.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7
Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1, Chapter 2
DW - Chapter 1

map of the world, 2/11 )
Title: Map of the World, 1/11
Author: Seperis
Codes: Dean/Castiel, et al, AU
Rating: R
Summary: The world's already over and they're already dead. All they're doing now is marking time until the end.
Author Notes: Thanks to nrrrdy_grrrl for beta above and beyond. For two years, even. Set after the events in 5.4 The End.
Spoilers: Seasons 5, 6, and 7
Links:
AO3 - All, Chapter 1

map of the world, 1/11 )
Richard III had scoliosis, not a hunched back

There are other discrepancies between Shakespeare's descriptions and the skeleton besides the back problem, Mitchell said.

The real Richard does not appear to have had a limp or a withered arm, as Shakespeare had described. His trunk and abdomen would have appeared short compared with his arms and legs, Mitchell said. His right shoulder would have been slightly higher than the left.


You. Don't. Say?

Dear Henry Tudor,

History is written by the victors future.

Also? You were a dick, and no one liked you.

Bite me,
Jenn

Shakespeare,

You're forgiven.

magnanimously,
seperis
The Six Most Horrifying Sex Scenes in Fan Fiction Part 4 - which okay, let's not pretend here, this was hilarious. However, it isn't link worthy except for the author's aside in Number 5: Teen Wolf Has Amputee Sex With Characters from War and Peace

Once again, this scenario leaves us with numerous questions we suspect we'll never have the answer to, such as who is the audience for this? Is there a large segment of the erotic fan fiction consumer base that A) has read War and Peace, B) watches the MTV version of Teen Wolf, and C) has a male pregnancy fetish?


That's the fangirl equivalent of asking 'what is the sound of one hand clapping'? Or possibly a corollary of Rule 34(d): if it exists, porn will be written for it, and three quarters of your audience will spontaneously realize they're totally into it upon reading. Yes, there's an audience, adorable Cracked writer; we invent those, too.

Like sure, you're not into explicit cannibal serial killer pornfests, but what if one is a god, one is a mythical monster, one is the main character from a made for tv movie about a real serial killer who are all played by the same actor as half the participants? Sign me up, and give me a minute to Venn diagram this. Sure, you're not into almost hilariously feminized bottoming, but what if it's an universe with biologically enforced gender stereotypes and they all have wings and claws and self-lubing asses and get knocked up like a lot? With quintuplets? With elf ears? Someone just read this paragraph and is going 'okay, but where the fuck can I get all of this in one story? Is there elf ear penetration? Fuck you, this is teasing." Yes, it is: why hasn't someone written me this? Slaughterhouse 5 AU would be perfect.

Audience; done. We can do it before there's a story. Thus ends the lesson.

Cracked is in so many ways awesome, but every once in a while they stumble, dewy naivety and wide-eyed innocent upon fandom and come back, shaken, saying 'have you seen...' and the answer is 'yes, there's a tag for it on AO3; do you need a link?' Cracked, you're not horrifying me; you're giving me a reading list.

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