attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
These are pacifier holders for my future niece.  They're my present for my sister in law's upcoming baby shower.   You clip them to the baby's clothing, and snap a pacifier into them, and that way they don't fall on the floor all the time and get dirty.  It's been a very long time since I've done any embroidery at all, much less without a pattern, but I like the way the little felt animals came out.  They're double sided, and all the ugly backs of the embroidery are hidden in between the two layers of felt.

Anyway, my sister in law's doing the kid's room in a jungle theme with elephants, I made the aliens for my sister who loves aliens, and the owls for myself, because I've been collecting them since I was nine.  So there's something to represent each of her paternal aunts, and something her mother likes.

Anyone thinking of making your own, remember to keep them six inches or less when finished, otherwise they're a strangulation hazard.


Pacifier Holders by Attackfish on deviantART
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)

Send me any character from any piece o media you know I know about (fandoms, book review books, anything I've mentioned here, etc.)

character:
hate them | love to hate them | don’t really care | like them | LOVE them | THEY ARE MY PRECIOUS

ship with:

brotp:

general opinions:

Sad News

May. 7th, 2014 08:09 pm
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
We had to give up all of the birds.  My mother and I both developed hypersensitivity pneumonitis, specifically the type called bird fancier's lung.  After it caused my mom to develop pneumonia and almost killed her, and made me unable to go to sleep because I couldn't breathe, we found our birds temporary homes with a reputable rescue that will make every effort to keep the birds that should be together, together.  I have worked with them before.  They do very good work, and my babies are safe with them.

I miss my babies terribly, but it had literally become life and death, and my mother and I were at risk of permanent lung function loss.  I have had birds my entire life, and it really hurts that I will never be able to have birds again.

After we found homes for the birds, we had the entire house cleaned, washed all the sheets, and blankets, and curtains, rented giant hepa filters...  I;m starting to be able to breathe again.  But I still miss my birds.

attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
It struck me a while back that I accidentally made Hufflepuff!Zuko and Azula white, which is to say if their father is Voldemort, and their mother is Bellatrix, they have two white parents, and crap, I screwed that up.  I also made Mai half white for the sake of a silly pun, and connecting her to an old pureblood family.  So in the interests of not doing that with any of the other characters, here are my universe notes for race, ethnicity, and family in the Hufflepuff!Zuko verse

Uncle Iroh and Aunt Wu, who run the Wizarding orphanage where Zuko and Azula grow up are both some of the earliest Korean adoptees.  Iroh was very close to his adoptive parents, who were Ashkenazi Jewish and both a witch and wizard themselves and took him in after his first adoptive parents, their neighbors, were terrified by his accidental magic when he was still a baby.   His adoptive family raised him Ashkenazi Jewish, and did not attempt to help him forge a connection to his Korean heritage.  Since growing up, he has visited South Korea, and attempted to reclaim that part of his identity, and he had a few difficult years with his adoptive parents while they struggled to come to terms this.  He is still a practicing Jew.  While Iroh's relationship with his adoptive parents was good, though flawed, Wu's relationship with hers was not.  Her father was emotionally abusive to her mother, and her mother leaned on her emotionally, using her as a reassurance and human security blanket.  As she got older, her father became more and more sexually creepy with her, and began to molest her when she was ten.  After she blasted him off her in a burst of accidental magic a few months later, he mostly avoided her.  Then her Hogwarts letter came, and like Harry, she avoided telling her Muggle adoptive family that she couldn't do magic over the summer.  She left home as soon as she graduated, and later went to South Korea, and managed to track down her birth mother, who was a witch too.  They exchanged letters, floo conversations, and occasional visits until her mother's death from old age.

Mai' Nott's father is Theodore Nott's first cousin, and her mother is a Japanese pureblood woman that he met and married while abroad between the Voldemort wars.  She and her mother came to England with him when Mai was four, at the end of the second Voldemort war.  While her father was never a Death Eater, he is a pureblood supremacist.  Her mother, while more interested in social status more generally has her own pureblood biases as well.  Mai thinks they're both idiots.

Ty Lee is half Vietnamese, half Japanese, which is something she and Mai bonded over on the train to Hogwarts.  Unlike Mai, however, both Ty Lee's parents were born in the UK, and are Muggles.  Her family is very well off.  Her father owns a shipping company, and her mother is an investment banker.  Ty is actually her surname, and in primary school, she sometimes went by Leah.  Azula is the one who started calling her Ty Lee instead of Lee Ty, but now everyone t Hogwarts does, including her teachers.

Toph Bei Fong is Chinese by way of Hong Kong, and her family is a very old, very wealthy pureblood family.  She would have been sorted into Slytherin, but she found out Hufflepuff's mascott is a badger, and had a three minute fight with the hat before it gave in and sorted her into Hufflepuff.  She's extremely glad for this, as otherwise she would have shared a dorm with Azula.

Aang is 2nd generation Tibetan, and lives with his grandfather Gyatso.  Magic skipped a generation in his family, as his mother was a muggle and his father was a squib.  He has a cat named Momo as his familiar.

Sokka and Katara are in flux.  I can't decide whether to try to keep them as close to canon as possible and make them Candian Inuit and figure out a reason for them to be going to a British Wizarding school that didn't appear to have any non-british students, or draw inspiration from Katara's name and make them subcontinental Indian, which would make more sense witht he location.  Oy.

Jin, Song, and Teo are siblings in this fic, and they're third generation Chinese.  Their mother was muggleborn and their father was a half-blood, and both were killed in the war.

Haru Teo, Jet, Yue, Hahn, Hide, and On Ji round out the rest of the war orphans, and I haven't decided anything for them yet.
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
[livejournal.com profile] floranna tagged me on tumblr, that wretch, and since I don't tumblr, here goes on dreamwidth/livejournal.

Rules:

Rule 1: always post the rules
Rule 2: answer the questions the person who tagged you asked and make 10 new ones
Rule 3: tag 10 new people and link them
Rule 4: let them know you’ve tagged them



1. Your main fandom right now.

Avatar: the Last Airbender, but I've been reading a lot of Thor fics with Loki.  I am ashamed of this.

2. Recommend three pieces of fantastic fan fiction.

I'm a sadist, so one of of these is a WIP.  Sorry.

Avatar: the Last Airbender.:

Escapee by [personal profile] lizbee

So you're a traitor. Now what? AU from "The Boiling Rock" where Mai and Ty Lee escape with the others.

This fic is glorious!  It's one of the best Mai fics ever written, and Lizbee knows just how to handle Mai's uncertainty, and coming to grips with what she has done, and the roiling storm of emotions just under her stoic surface.

Eight Principles of Yong by psocoptera

 The pen is mightier than the sword, or how Zuko saves the day via the power of good penmanship.

Great characterization, wonderful world building, and Zuko being cool in a dweeby kind of way.  Sweet, a little sad, and a wonderful idea for how Zuko may have won over the Fire Nation people.

The Psychic Neal 'Verse by [personal profile] sholio (the WIP)

"He's some kind of secret government experiment?" Peter and his team have been trying to catch the elusive con artist Neal Caffrey for years. But Peter's search for Neal leads him to something else: a startling revelation about Neal's true nature.

In this fic, Sholio proves she has creepy powers to reach into my subconcious and pull out all the secret horrors and put them on paper.  She is a horrible person, and you need to reed this to be as miserable as I am.  (it's good misery).

3. Have you read any of my fics? If you have, what did you think about them?

Fishing for complements, are we?  I've read "Cell" and "In Silence."  I liked In Silence better, because "Cell" involves Zuko death right around the corner, and my baby!  And "In Silence is full of Hakoda and Zuko goodness.

4. Rain or snow?

Used to be, I would say rain, but I've been having terrible problems with mold allergies, and a good hard freeze really helps kill a lot of things off, so snow.

5. Blood or guts?

Blood.  Blood doesn't have to mean major organ damage.

6. The Most Meaningful Song Ever (right now?)

Good thing you specified.  It changes so often for me.   "Get Out Alive" by Three Days Grace.  I know nothing else about this band, at all.  I found it by chance, and now I'm using it for a Mai and Ty Lee vid.

7. Food you don’t want to live without.

Tomatoes. I love them.

8. Your computer’s name.

Eugenides.  My old iPod was named Irene.

9. The most understated book ever.

Understated?  I'm not sure what you mean.  Under-appreciated maybe?  I'm not much of a fan of understated literature to to tell the truth.  Understated is often code for written like a shopping list.  As for under-appreciated, the Queen's Thief books by Megan Whalen Turner are way under-appreciated, and everyone needs to read them, now.

10. Movie people that should forget even exists.

I can't think of any.  There was no movie called The Last Airbender, and M. Night Shyamalan certainly didn't direct it.


MY QUESTIONS!

1. Favorite place.
2. Favorite fanwork you made.
3. Classical novel you wish you never read.
4. First fandom.
5. Do you collect anything?  If so, what?
6. Favorite book/movie/tv show/whatever you never managed to be fannish for.
7. Favorite season of the year
8. Mountains, or ocean?
9. Has there ever been a book/movie/tv show/whatever that was so bad you couldn't stop watching?
10. Ice cream, cake, or pie?

I choose:

[personal profile] chordatesrock, [personal profile] ljlee, [livejournal.com profile] dungeonwriter, [personal profile] lizbee,[personal profile] sholio, [personal profile] unjapanologist, [livejournal.com profile] weirdlet, [livejournal.com profile] beboots, [livejournal.com profile] lavanyasix, and [livejournal.com profile] jin_fenghuang 


attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
It's Passover and everyone at my house is sick, and/or (poor Mom!) neck deep in finals, so we're not doing Seder, and I am studiously ignoring the existence of the Christian Seder t the Von Braun Center tonight, and the plan for tonight is to park myself on the couch with my sick family with my face mask and watch the new Ken Burns documentary about the Gettysburg address, because freedom!

No, seriously, utterly non sarcastically, for freedom.  Passover is about freedom and escape from slavery.  It's a holiday about the world, and social justice, and remembering that although we are free, other people are not.  It's a holiday about freedom for all mankind, and a recommitment to try to free others who are still in bondage or are oppressed, and to not oppress others.   It reminds us of our duty as human beings, that we who have suffered oppression are not so powerless that we cannot oppress others.  It reminds us that we must not use that power to oppress others, that we must look at all the peoples of the world as people, even when we think they are our enemies.  It reminds us how hateful our own oppression was and is to us.

And it reminds us of our duty not to do to others that which is hateful to us.

So I am not performing a single Passover ritual, but I am doing my best to celebrate the spirit of the holiday and observe it in my own way.

Chag Sameach, everyone!
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/3-dead-after-suburban-kansas-city-shooting/2014/04/13/3811300c-c34a-11e3-9ee7-02c1e10a03f0_story.html

Once again there are three people dead because someone decided they should die for being Jewish or in this case, daring to associate with Jewish people, and part of me is intellectually going over the reasons why there has always been an uptick in anti-Semitic violence around Easter and Passover, for as long as there has been Easter.  Part of me is busy being angry and making sarcastic quips like the title of this post.  Part of me is again reminded that I should be afraid.  But most of me is just so tired of it all, and wondering if it will ever stop.

And that part of me just hurts for the families of the dead.  Zekher kadosh livrakha, May the memory of the holy be a blessing.

attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Disclaimer: I don't own Avatar: the Last Airbender. If I did, it would be one long angstfest and you know it.

Summary: Zuko sorts through the wreckage of his childhood and comes across a doll given to his sister.

Author's Note: It's been a while since I wrote a fic just because. Feels good.

Empty Bodies, Empty Smiles )


Um...

Mar. 30th, 2014 09:55 pm
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
When I was in high school, a really close friend killed himself by shooting himself in the head, and for some reason tonight's The Good Wife really brought back a lot of those memories.  I don't really want to talk about it, but if any of you have pictures of kittens, puppies, and baby animals, please send links.
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
And after last night's episode, all I can say is

Spoilers )

Anyone want to talk about it?

attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
My brother called my parents to announce his engagement.  This was no real surprise to us.  He and his intended are very much in love, and we had all been taking bets on when he was going to get the nerve to ask.  My parents took him out to dinner a few days later, and my mom asked to see the ring.  Well, that engagement ring wasn't alone.  She looked at his wife, and at him, and asked aghast. "Is that a wedding ring?"  Which is how we all learned that the two had eloped.  So then, my dad noticed that my brother's being extra attentive, and my sister went out with my new sister-in-law and noticed she stayed away from alcohol, so when they came over to dinner a few days later, my sister asked her the million dollar question.  Yep, she's pregnant.  She's due in the beginning of August.  So anyway, we just found out the baby's sex, and my brother and his new wife (who is a wonderful woman, and they're crazy about each other) are having a baby girl.  My first niece, I'm so excited!
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
There are billboards up everywhere advertizing a Christian Seder being held at the Von Braun Center.  Yes, let's just appropriate Jewish religion and culture and the act out the deeply sacred traditions of a religious group that has faced thousands of years of persecution at the hands of Christians, and let's do it in a building named after a Nazi!  I think profanity is an entirely appropriate response, no?
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
I’ve been wanting to see Rise of the Guardians for a while now, because Rufftoon worked on it, and because of all the cool gif sets on tumblr, so I got it from Netflix.

And I’m not really sure what other people see in it.

Maybe it’s because I never really celebrated Christmas or Easter as a kid, but Rise of the Guardians seems even more culturally specific and alienating to people outside of the culturally Christian European and North American mainstream than the current Hollywood norm.  Two of the guardians are specifically tied to Christian holidays.  Great.  Little kid me would have felt very welcomed.

And then there’s the fact that of the main characters, there are five guardians, Pitch, and a kid.  Of those, all but one of them are male.  One out of seven is pathetic, especially in a movie about people who guard and take care of children.

Plus, I didn’t like the movie’s attitude towards fear.  Fear itself is a protective force.  Yes, it can become toxic and put you in danger, but as anyone who has ever had a manic episode can tell you, so can the “positive” emotions.  Fear protects children.  It helps keep them safe.  I would love to have seen a dark, terrifying, but ultimately good guardian embodying fear, and instead we got the sinister and one note Pitch.

There were things about it I did like.  I liked the animation, I liked Jack’s story and why he was chosen to be a guardian, I liked a lot of the imaginative details, especially he hummingbird themed tooth fairy.  It was fun, it was diverting, but it didn’t do much for me, and I don’t feel the need to rewatch it. *shrug*
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
Okay, I promise I haven't been ignoring you, or trying to drag out the suspense.  I've just been overwhelmed.  Mom's still getting over pneumonia, and I'm in the middle of doing student teaching for the first time this semester.  It's fun, but exhausting.

Anyway, the answers!  Here are all of the ones that were not guessed:

2. Dr. Nora Barlow (the Leviathan series by Scott Westerfeld)
3. Tiana (the Princess and the Frog)
5. The Wizard Howl (Howl's Moving Castle and sequels by Diana Wynn Jones)
7. Eugenides (the Queen's Thief series by Megan Whalen Turner)

I didn't really expect anybody to guess 2, but I was astonished no one guessed 5, and also that anyone did guess 6 as Sabriel (yay!).  Anyway, everybody should go out and read the Queen's Thief series, now.  Your life is not complete until you do.

Also, I've been watching this video of Jason Brown ice skating at the US nationals to MC Hammer's "Cant Touch this" on repeat.  It's about all my brain can handle: www.youtube.com/watch?v=YyIfLB_MpA4

attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
I didn't reveal the answers on Valentines day, because only four of the characters had been guessed.  Now, a few days later, and we're at seven characters guessed!  So, do you guys want me to give you a little more time and see if you can guess the rest, or would you like me to spill the beans?
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
My dogs, man, my dogs.  The things I do for them.

So last night, we got about five inches of snow, most of it in less than an hour.  It's ten o clock at night, and I round up the five dogs for their last excursion before bed.  It's snowing buckets, freezing, and my boys and Teddy are shivering pathetically in their little sweaters, going, gee it's cold out here, lets do our business and get back inside as quick as we can.  Suzy is doing contortions, trying to pee without touching her lady bits to the snow and cursing her two inch long dachshund legs, and Amy...  Amy, who is supposed to be recovering from pneumonia, that stinker, takes off barreling into the night, singing "LET IT GO, LET IT GO, I AM ONE WITH THE WIND AND SKYYYYYYYYYYYYYY!" And I'm standing there wondering why I decided to wear a bathrobe that only goes down to my knees, shouting at her, "Yeah, the cold never bothered you anyway, but but the rest of us would like to go back inside now, you miserable puffball, so get your fuzzy black chow butt up here!  Yes, I can totally see you there in the snow.  It's white, you're black, you are not hidden."  And then she swaggers back inside and gives me this little smirk.

Anyway, its the day before Valentines day, and only two of the characters from my Valentines Crossover Crack Mix and Match Shipping Meme of Doomy Doom have been guessed.  Go over there and try your luck.

attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
The subtitles I’m giving the book reviews in this trilogy are becoming more and more fanciful.  There is no blood magic in this book, and the subtitle has nothing to do with anything except that there is magic, and organized crime.

Cassel has been forced to pick a side and he’s picked the FBI.  With his brother Barron, he is trying to leave the criminal life behind for good and finish high school before becoming an agent himself and using his powers for as legal a purpose as he can put them to.  But Lila is furious with him, and her father eager to bring him back into the fold, and his is mother neck deep in trouble with the Zacharov crime family for a theft she committed long ago.  And with the FBI reminding him more and more of a crime family itself, Cassel doesn’t know whether it’s possible, or even worth it to work for instead of against the law.

Girls like her, my grandfather once warned me, girls like her turn into women with eyes like bullet holes and mouths made of knives. They are always restless. They are always hungry. They are bad news. They will drink you down like a shot of whisky. Falling in love with them is like falling down a flight of stairs. )

These are not gorgeous books as some of the cover blurbs would suggest.  They are painful, stark, brutal books that rip the false beauty and idealism away from their subject matter.  When I had finished reading them, I was wrung out and exhausted.  I can’t recommend them strongly enough, but I also can’t warn you away strongly enough.

Holly Black can be found online at her website, blackholly.com, or on livejournal, as [livejournal.com profile] blackholly.

Some days

Feb. 4th, 2014 04:46 pm
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
We were talking about bullies and I listened to my fellow teaching students just not get it in so many kind, well meaning ways.  And then my teacher asked about our own experiences with bullying, and everyone in the class talked.  Most said they had never been bullied, the rest mentioned isolated incidents, and talked about how standing up to the bullies really worked!  And I looked around at this room of earnest faces, and realized none of them had a clue.

Most people want to become teachers because public school was a place of joy for them.  I feel a little alone right now.
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
I have a list of ten different characters from ten different fandoms, and no matter which way you mix them, there will be crack.  I want you to give me two numbers from one to ten, and I will give you why the two characters who correspond to those numbers fell in love/are in a relationship/are sleeping together/slept together that one time while drunk.  Then, I would really like it if you could reply with a guess as to who you picked.  On the fourteenth, I will reveal what numbers go with what characters.

1. Mozzie (White Collar) [livejournal.com profile] floranna 
2. ???
3. Tiana (The Princess and the Frog)
4. Mai (Avatar: the Last Airbender) guessed by [livejournal.com profile] chordatesrock 
5. ???
6. Sabriel (The Old Kingdom series by Garth Nix) guessed by anonymous
7. ???
8. Alicia Florrick (The Good Wife) guessed by [livejournal.com profile] floranna 
9. Loki  (I reserve the right to pick and choose my canons) guessed by [livejournal.com profile] danatheleseus 
10. Neville Longbottom (Harry Potter) guessed by [livejournal.com profile] luunyscarlet 



Things you know so far: 5 is not Tahno, and there are no Korra characters on this list.  There is an A:tLA character, but it isn't Zuko.  8 is from a non-fantasy American prime time TV show.  2, 6, 7 and 5 all come from YA speculative fiction books that I have reviewed on this blog.  5 also stars in an anime movie with a wide American release.  6 has seven bells, and fights the dead and the people who raise the dead.

Clues:

7 and 10: Both these boys like to keep their light under a bushel. Also, a high strung young man like 7 could use a gardener like 10 to tend his fragile flower self.
2 and 9: As a woman of the biological sciences, 2 is absolutely fascinated by the many strange and varied creatures 9 manages to expel from his divine hoo-ha.
5 and 8: 8 has absolutely no problem with heartless men, in fact after what she's been through with her husband and former boss, you might say it's her type. 5 meanwhile, has never been able to resist no nonsense women, especially when they leave his hair care products alone.
6 and 7: 7 loves tall dark and terrifying women, which come to think of it, so do I, and it describes three of the five women on here. You might say they ring my bell. 6 likes her men smart. Very very smart. And give her a hand, she is used to dealing with royal petulance.
2 and 7: Let it never be said that 7 doesn't go for smart women, past all point of good sense, in fact. As for 2, he uh, stole her heart. Besides, there's nothing better to a woman like her than a guy who lives in a library. Unless he lived in a zoo. Or a bioengeneered airship.
1 and 8: Normally 1 doesn't like to get that close to governmental types, but he's made exceptions before for awesome women such as 8, and he's more convinced of the evil of government employees than of politicians anyway. And after all of the backroom deals she has seen, and the corruption and callousness of politicians, lawyers, and government officials, that hurts people and ruins lives, after all the ways she has learned to game the system, his conspiracy theories about fake moon landings seem charmingly naive.
6 and 3: 6 is just the perfect person to deal with 3's voodoo problem, and she's dealt with far worse things than a little slime mucus. Plus, as 6 knows, belles and bandoliers just go together.


______oo000oo                    oo000oo
___000______000          000_______000
__000________0o      o0___________000
_000__________0     0____________000
_000_________7      7____________000
_000 ________7       7____________000
__000_________7       7__________000
___000________7      7_________000
____000________7   7________000
______000_______7_______000
________000______7___000
__________0000__7_0000
_____________000000
_______________oo
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
There was a time when if I had all of the books in a series at once, I would write one review of all of them.  There was also a time when I used to write actual reviews, instead of book report style essays.  Those times are gone now.  We do not speak of those times.

One of the reasons I used to review whole series at once as an attempt to not spoil above the cut text, but oh well.  After this point, here there be spoilers for White Cat.

Cassel’s mother is out of prison, and before she gets back to her old tricks, she has a homecoming gift for her son.  Beautiful vicious Lila, who he has been in love with since childhood is human again, and his mother has worked her to be infatuated with him.  Waiting until the magic has faded would be so much easier if Lila hadn’t decided it was a good idea to go to school with him.  Worse, the FBI is sniffing around, and drawing closer and closer to the Sharpe family secrets, and when Cassel’s brother Phillip turns up dead, he’ll have to dive head first into those secrets if he wants to get out of this alive.

“You’ve just been sitting here chatting with me and my brother’s dead? You knew my brother was dead and you let me - you let me...,” I stammer. “No. No. Why would you do that?” )

Red Glove is a strong second novel in a trilogy, every bit as powerful and page turning as the first and third, with none of the flaws middle novels are so often plagued by.

The same warning that I gave at the end of my previous review still applies.  This is a very good book, but it’s emotionally a difficult read, and potentially extremely triggery.  If you’re considering reading it and worried about it, you can PM me to discuss any specific concerns.

Holly Black can be found online at her website, blackholly.com, or on livejournal, as [livejournal.com profile] blackholly.

attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
I have now gotten to the point where I just pop into the library when I’m downtown instead of waiting for an occasion when I actually need to go there.  I’m not sure if this is a sign of my improving mental health, or a new coping mechanism, but the upshot is, I’m reading more, and therefore writing more book reviews, and I am not at this time inclined to figure out a way to make myself read less.   Anyway, this is another one of those series that I’ve been meaning to read for a while and never got around to it.  I’m getting around to them now.

Cassel Sharpe is the only nonworker in a family of magic workers.  He is one of the masses, a mark, there to be conned, cheated, and taken advantage of.  Magic is illegal, and magic workers live on the edges of society, banding together in crime families, setting out on their own as small time crooks, or trying to keep their powers hidden to lead as law abiding a life as they can.  But just because Cassel doesn’t have magic doesn’t mean he’s honest.  When he wakes up on the roof of his school with no memory of how he got there, his own crimes, and a murder he doesn’t even remember committing years ago, come crawling out of the past, just waiting to catch up with him.

“Good kitty. Who’s an amazing killing machine? That’s right! You are! You are a brutal tiny lion! Yes, you are.” )

This is not a happy book, but it’s a good one.  Read at your own risk.  It contains a long list of triggers, many of which are spoilery.

Holly Black can be found online at her website, blackholly.com, or on livejournal, as [livejournal.com profile] blackholly.

attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Disclaimer: The music for this vid is Sara Bareilles's "King of Anything" . The footage in this vid comes from Avatar: the Last Airbender, which belongs to Nickelodeon, as well as to Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko.

Summary: It was Ursa who made Ozai Firelord.

Creator Commentary: There is frustratingly little footage of Ursa to work with, and I didn't realize until this vid that there isn't a single scene of Ursa talking with Ozai in the series proper.  This really goes to emphasize her status as a cypher.


Ursa made Ozai King of Anything



attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
They won't, in case you actually were worried. This is something I made two years ago, and somehow, it got packed away with the holiday decorations for God only knows what reason.

Cut for image size )

I was listening to a lot of The Mamas and the Papas at the time. Yes, most of these are portraits of real people, including myself, my parents, childhood friends, my elementary school band director, Harpo Marx, and Tony Curtis dressed as a woman from Some Like it Hot.
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
I am now officially wisdom teeth-less, and the marcaine is starting to wear off, so I can feel my face again well enough that I wish I couldn't. The nice thing is, we have tons of mashed potatoes and home made ice cream left over from Dad's birthday, so I don't have to worry about chewing anything, or trying to cook right now.  Anyway, now that Dad's birthday party is over (which is our religiously blended family's compromise present exchange holiday), I can now show off the beautiful craftsmanship on my gift to my sister.

You have to understand, this is the kind of thing my sister likes )

For those of you wondering, some of the local radio stations have been playing Christmas carols since just after Halloween, and listening to the same twenty songs for two months straight is really starting to get to me.  This may or may not have been a contributing factor in my sister's zombie sock baby doll.

attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
I swear, the next time a Christian tries to compare the Holocaust to the death of Jesus, I may just start screaming.  I mean what the hell?  How is that even a thing you say to someone?  And yes, this is not the first time I have heard this one.   God fucking damn.
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
Today I made a great big pot of turkey meatball soup.  Before every semester, I make big batches of a few different kinds of soup and freeze them so I have something I can eat for lunch that I’m not allergic to, so I’m not inflicting this stuff on my family, which is a good thing, because I don’t even know if it’s any good, or if the reason I love it so much is pure unmitigated nostalgia.

Perhaps nostalgia isn’t quite the right word, but I don’t know if there is a word for what I feel for turkey meatball soup.  When I was ten, my illness was finally diagnosed, and I began treatment.  At the time, my immune system was in such poor shape that there were only a very small number of foods I could eat, turkey, rice, salt, grapes, spinach, scallions, and oregano.  This became even worse once I became dangerously allergic to grapes.  By the time I could begin to add other foods to my diet, I was so thoroughly sick of all of these foods that I didn’t eat rice for years, for example, and I still hate turkey in every form but gravy, and strangely enough, turkey meatball soup.  I ate it every day for breakfast for more than a year.  When the time came that I didn’t have to eat it anymore, I didn’t even want to look at it.  Then, I years later, I started craving it.  I made it today with no idea what to expect.  I added pearl couscous to make it a little more filling, but other than that, it’s exactly like what I ate every morning, turkey broth, ground turkey, scallions, spinach, and oregano.  And as soon as I took the first bite, it all came rushing back.

In retrospect, it wasn’t a good year for me.  Not only were the foods I could eat limited, but so were their amounts.  Even as my immune system became healthier, the rest of me sickened.  I was constantly hungry.  My hunger drove my mother on the phone to my doctor at least weekly, crying, because she couldn’t feed her child.  Also, I was trying to catch up on ten years worth of social skills overnight, and painfully shy from being bullied at my previous school.    It's no wonder this was the year my first stalker would attach herself to me. 

But this isn’t what I taste when I eat turkey meatball soup.  Turkey meatball soup tastes like sanity.  It tastes like my brain waking up for the very first time.  It tastes like discovering books and trying to read them while I ate on school days before my mother saw them and too them away so I wouldn’t be late.  They taste like getting up early on Saturday mornings to go to the doctor, knowing that I would come home feeling weak and sick, but that there was a book the Rabbi had lent me waiting for my Sunday in bed.  It tastes like Sundays in my bathrobe, with my parents at the table.  It tastes like everything’s going to be okay, and no matter what the problem is, I’ll get through it.  So no, I have no idea if my turkey meatball soup tastes good.  I just know it tastes right.
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Disclaimer: The music for this vid is Pat Benatar's "We Belong". The footage in this vid comes from Avatar: the Last Airbender, which belongs to Nickelodeon, as well as to Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko.

Summary: Happy, fluffy Water Tribe siblings.

Creator Commentary:  In celebration of getting my new Critical Commons account, I finished up the vid I was working on for the holidays.  So, Happy Holidays, and enjoy the beautiful, happy, healthy sibling-ness of Katara and Sokka.


Katara and Sokka Belong


attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
My appeal went through on Vimeo, and they restored all of my vids.  Reference was made to my "well-reasoned and polite message," which made me feel good about my ability to keep my panic to myself.  However, this whole experience convinced me to move my vids to Critical Commons, a site explicitly friendly to vids and vidders, where I now have an account and have uploaded all of my vids.  Unfortunately, neither Dreamwidth nor Livejournal allow embedded videos from Critical Commons, so I have to link to them in my entries instead.  All of my vid entries are now updated with the new links, I have downloaded copies from Vimeo of the three vids of mine that I lost in the move to my new computer, and I've deleted my Vimeo account.

My new Critical Commons account




attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
I had two exams at the library the day before yesterday, and then I had to go for an oral surgery consult (My wisdom teeth are impacted) so as a treat to myself, I took two books out of the library that I’ve been meaning to read for a while: How to Ditch Your Fairy by Justine Larbalestier and Team Human by Justine Larbalestier and Sarah Rees Brennan.

Team Human:

Mel has never liked vampires.  Lucky for her, even though she lives in New Whitby, the famous vampire town, she hasn’t had to have much to do with them.  They stay on their side of town, and she stays on hers.  But vampires have always held a fascination for her best friend Cathy.  When a vampire who was turned as a teenager back in the eighteen hundreds decides to start taking classes at the local high school, it’s Mel’s job to figure out what he’s doing there and chase him off before Cathy finds herself drained of her blood and joining the ranks of the undead herself.

How to Ditch Your Fairy:

Charlie hates her fairy.  Fairies are supernatural good luck talismans, which means they’re supposed to be helpful right?  Her best friend has a clothes shopping fairy and it’s awesome.  Charlie meanwhile has a parking fairy, and at fourteen years old, this means everybody wants her to ride in their car.  After an unfortunate kidnapping incedent, she wants her fairy gone, and she will do anything to make that happen.

Okay, so you don’t get a cut because this will be short.  I decided to review these two books together because I have pretty much the same thing to say about both of them.  I liked them.  They’re clever, fun, charming, and witty.  I didn’t love them, I’m not overly attached to the characters, the settings were interesting, but the books didn’t explore the bits of them that most intrigued me, and I’m not devastated that they’re finished, nor do I want to reread them.  They are light, fun, happy books, and the perfect thing to read after final exams.  They made me feel better about getting my wisdom teeth out, and the fact that my car wouldn’t start, at night in the rain.  If you want something pleasant and diverting, don’t hesitate to pick them up.

Justine Larbalestier has a website at justinelarbalestier.com/ and tweets under the name [twitter.com profile] JustineLavaworm.  Sarah Rees Brennan can be found all over the internet, as [livejournal.com profile] sarahtales on livehournal, on tumblr at sarahreesbrennan.tumblr.com, and on her own website, sarahreesbrennan.com.

attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
All of my vids were taken down from Vimeo for being a violation of copyright, with the stated reason as "Vimeo does not allow TV shows, movie trailers, or stuff you found on the web."  As such, until further notice, my vids are down, and people who host their vids on Vimeo might want to watch out.  I responded, as the email notice of take down stated I was allowed to, with the following:


My vids were not full episodes, trailers (fanmade or otherwise), or any other form of illegal piracy. They were vids, and as such are considered to be fair use transformative works. They are a critical engagement with the source material, in this case, Avatar: the Last Airbender and Legend of Korra. I use them to point out and highlight things about the source material that I like, that I consider problematic, or that I don't think other fans have noticed. For example, in "Azula's Jar of Hearts", I argue that one character, Ty Lee was in an abusive relationship with another character, Azula, and what some fans see as Ty Lee betraying Azula is in fact Ty Lee standing up to her abuser. In "Learn to be Still Korra", I argue that Korra did not learn the lessons in the first season of Legend of Korra that I thought she should have, and that I found her character arc unsatisfying.

Vidding as a form of fair use has been recognized in the United States in a statement by the Librarian of Congress, James H. Billington, on July 26, 2010, ( http://www.copyright.gov/1201/2010/Librarian-of-Congress-1201-Statement.html )in which he said that there were certain classes of works in which it was legal to break DVD description to create, one of which was:

"Motion pictures on DVDs that are lawfully made and acquired and that are protected by the Content Scrambling System when circumvention is accomplished solely in order to accomplish the incorporation of short portions of motion pictures into new works for the purpose of criticism or comment, and where the person engaging in circumvention believes and has reasonable grounds for believing that circumvention is necessary to fulfill the purpose of the use in the following instances:

"(i) Educational uses by college and university professors and by college and university film and media studies students;
"(ii) Documentary filmmaking;
"(iii) Noncommercial videos"

Vidding falls specifically under the third example, and I have already explained how I use the short clips "for the purpose of criticism or comment".

Having read your guidelines, since my works are vids, and not a straight up rip of a TV show, and the clips within them are rearranged, edited, and cut to tell a new story with a new narrative, they do not violate your guidelines, US copyright law, or current international copyright law. Also, your site has already carved out an exception for "Machinima videos with a story" as long as they are labeled as such. Vids are equally a creative fannish endeavor, that use images from a source material in a similar way, and in my view, should be afforded a similar exception.

Please consider returning my vids to your site, or amending your guidelines to make it clear that vids and transformative works like them are not allowed.

Thank you,

Attackfish.
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
I did actually read Unspoken and Untold one right after another, in the parking lot of the grocery store while my grandmother left me in the car without the keys I would have needed to make her car alarm shut up, while she shopped for groceries in a store full of pumpkins (just a few more days, and they’ll all be gone!)  before I even thought about writing a review, but I figured in the interest of not swamping you all with two book reviews in one day, I would hold off on writing and posting my review of Untold.  By the way, this is where you want to stop reading if you don’t want to be spoiled for Unspoken.

Kami and Jared have been bound together since before they were born, and now, just as they have found each other, that bond is suddenly, painfully broken.  They no longer have each other’s comforting voice in their heads, they no longer can tell that the other is thinking and feeling, and they no longer know when the other is lying.  And now that Rob Lynburn has given the town of Sorry-in-the-Vale an ultimatum, and his deadline is drawing near, they could each really use somebody to talk to.  Worse, people in Sorry-in-the-Vale are dying, and and Jared’s friends and families are at the top of Rob Lynburn’s list.

Trigger warning again.  This time there’s less animal cruelty and more attempted suicide. There’s still murder, abusive families, and really f***ed up childhoods, though.  I would like to note that the trigger warnings I put on my reviews are for the books I’m writing about, not necessarily my review.  For example, in my Unspoken review I listed child abuse and animal cruelty, neither of which I went much into, but are very much a part of the book.

“Been chatting much with Jared?” “We often have special moments where I come into a room and he immediately leaves,” Kami said. “I treasure those times.” )

I also wanted to note that the cover blurbs call Unspoken and Untold “darkly funny”.  This is not true.  They are not black comedy.  They will not make you laugh at horrible things.  No, they’re dark and funny, separately and simultaneously.  They will make you laugh, and then hit you with something dark, and then they will make you laugh, and then hit you with something even darker, over and over and over again.  Be warned.

Damn it, now I have to wait almost a whole year before the last book in the trilogy comes out.  I need it.  I need it like air.

Sarah Rees Brennan can be found all over the internet, for example, as [livejournal.com profile] sarahtales  on livejournal, on tumblr at sarahreesbrennan.tumblr.com, and on her own website, sarahreesbrennan.com.  If you like her books, I advise checking out her web presences.  She likes to post short stories in the universes of her novels.
attackfish: Discretion prevented me from saying that I thought she was a fiend from the underworld (Lin Bei Fong MWT quote)
Between iTunes’s very strange download schedule for this season of Legend of Korra, registering for classes, and a minor pumpkin related incident (I have pumpkin related incidents about once or twice every year it seems, and they always sound like they should be funny or story worthy, or something, but no.  This time, for example, my brother was going to roast pumpkin seeds, but they went bad, so he threw them out, but he forgot to take out the trash before I came over for my nephews’ birthday party, so I had a seizure in the bathroom and went home after my meds kicked in to sleep it off), I only just got to watch the two hour long second season finale today, and I just can’t!  I can’t even!  In the newfangled internet speak, I am unable to can.

However, in a herculean fannish effort, I rewatched the finale and managed to put some thoughts together here for all of you.  What follows is obviously highly spoilery.

Things I didn’t like: If you’re just here for the squee, feel free to skip this part )

Everything else (don't worry, this list is much longer) )

Well this season has certainly played holy havoc with my spirit and spirit world canons, that’s for sure. *faints with exhaustion.*
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
I AM NOW OFFICIALLY AN EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION MAJOR AT ATHENS STATE, AND I HAVE ENROLLED IN CLASSES FOR THE SPRING SEMESTER!!! I CAME BY MY DREAM LATER THAN SOME, BUT NOW THAT I'VE FOUND IT, I AM NOT GOING TO LET ANYTHING STOP ME. DEPRESSION AND ANXIETY DISORDER CAN KISS MY PRETTY ROUND BEHIND!

And if you're a student at Athens State, drop me a line. Maybe we can get together some time.

WHEEEEEE!
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
The good thing about needing to go to the (great big beautiful) main branch of the county library to get my tests proctored is that it drags me to the library. And yes, it does say a lot about my recent mental and emotional health that I have had to be dragged to the library. You might have noticed a dearth of book reviews around here lately. I apologize. Or I apologize for bringing them back, depending on whether or not you’re just here for the fic. It also says a lot about my mental and emotional health lately that I haven’t read Sarah Rees Brennan’s two most recent solo endeavors until now.

Kami Glass has had a voice in her head since before she can remember, like an imaginary friend that she just never grew out of. Now that she’s in high school, this makes her more than a little weird, but she has other things to think about, like starting up the school newspaper she has christened the Nosy Parker, or trying to find some kind of dark and delicious secret in Sorry-in-the-Vale, the small English village where she has lived all her life. But when the Lynburns, the old leading family of Sorry-in-the-Vale come back, and Kami's imaginary friend isn’t so imaginary anymore, the prospect of a dark village secret stops being fun and starts being a deadly reality. And if Kami is to find the secret out before it finds her, all she has to go on are the people of Sorry-in-the-Vale, who aren’t talking, the Lynburns themselves, who definitely aren’t talking, and an eerie local children’s rhyme:

“Forest deep, silent bells
There's a secret no one tells
Valley quiet, water still
Lynburns watching on the hill
Apples red, corn gold
Almost everyone grows old”


Trigger warning (and it seems like everything I read lately needs one) for murder, animal cruelty, abusive families, and really f***ed up childhoods.

“The Lynburns built this town on their blood and bones.” “That was their first mistake,” Jared said. “They should've built a city on rock and roll.” )

I can’t believe it took me this long to read Unspoken. It’s amazing, and I can’t recommend it enough.

Sarah Rees Brennan can be found all over the internet, for example, as [livejournal.com profile] sarahtales on livehournal, on tumblr at sarahreesbrennan.tumblr.com, and on her own website, sarahreesbrennan.com. If you like her books, I advise checking out her web presences. She likes to post short stories in the universes of her novels.
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
A devastating blow has been dealt in the war between my car and the tree beside my driveway.  After more than a year of dropping all kinds of junk on my car, leaves, bird crap, spiky sticky seed pods, the tree decided to up the ante on Sunday and dropped a great big branch onto my windshield, shattering it.  Actually, I’m not sure what my car ever did to the tree to merit this treatment.  It’s a very one-sided war.

Anyway, I had a huge rainstorm, broken, leaking, windshield, and glass all over my car, not to mention a family making jokes about my fourteen year old beat up car being totaled (the branch did $330 in damage.  It wouldn’t take much to total my car, but it would take more than that).  Dad quickly sealed off the hole with polyethylene foam so I wouldn’t get water all over my car, and I spent Monday on the phone with the insurance company trying to get my window fixed.  Turns out something else happened on Sunday, like I don’t know, maybe tornadoes tearing apart a couple of small towns in Illinois, which makes my car into small potatoes, and also overloaded the insurance company computers, so when the nice lady from the insurance looked up my name, all that popped up was my old New Mexico policy that ended more than a year ago.  So she filed the claim anyway.

And instead of someone coming to replace my windshield on Tuesday morning, I got a solemn phone call from another nice lady at the insurance telling me that I did not in fact have car insurance, and did I know that driving around without car insurance and attempting to file a fraudulent claim were illegal?

After a small freakout, I got it straightened out, filed a claim with my perfectly up to date thank you very much auto policy, and had someone come out to fix my windshield yesterday instead.

I feel disconcertingly like an adult right now.
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
Since I am still working on my Hurricane Sandy story (sorry [livejournal.com profile] floranna, you'll have your story, I promise) I can't do an offering for the Philippines, but for once in my life, I have a little bit of money, and I was looking to buy a fic.  and sadly, none of my favorite authors in A:tLA are even offering (sad fish face is very sad).  Any of you guys looking at those disaster photos and thinking "I just got to do something"?  Anybody?  They need more offerers.

It's run through [livejournal.com profile] fandomaid and they're not running an auction, just a buy-it-now section, but here's the link if you want to look around and maybe shop or offer.  Typhoon Haiyan buy it now fundraiser
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
I got a comment last night on Quiet Shadowed Places (The one where Zuko is blind):

An interesting idea. It's a little odd, though, because unlike with Toph, this story doesn't really explain how Zuko would compensate for being blind, as I don't see how he could possibly track down the avatar while being blind without some other factor in play. Still, a good little story.

Anybody want to tell me what’s wrong with this comment? (Other than the utter patronization inherent in calling it a “good little story” Because really, wow.) )
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
So yesterday, I came out of the shower to find that my mom's dog Teddy had gotten into my bed, and pulled my comforter up to my pillows, and had put his head on my pillow and tucked himself in under the covers.  It was so cute I snapped off a couple pictures to send to my mother at work:





When Suzy realized I had the camera out, well that was it, how dare I take pictures of her brother and not her!  She might have no idea what a photograph is, but she knows the camera is something special, and she was going to be part of it, and that's all there was to that.  So she scuttled over on her short little Suzy legs and lay down on top of him:




She's not actually glaring, she's in the middle of blinking because of the flash, but that doesn't mean she's in any way being nice here.  After she er, spoiled his closeup, he figured out that he probably wasn't going to get his comfy nap all tucked in, and he tried to wiggle away.  She took her paw and shoved him back down.  Because she's such a sweet sister.  Suzy somehow knew that if he left, the camera would go away too, and she was going to do everything she could to keep the camera out, even if she has no idea what it actually does.  This is why we call her Miss Piggy.  My mother's dogs, everyone.
attackfish: Discretion prevented me from saying that I thought she was a fiend from the underworld (Lin Bei Fong MWT quote)
Disclaimer: The music for this vid is Natalie Merchant's "Build a Levee", as performed live in San Diago on March 30, 2002. The footage in this vid comes from Avatar: the Last Airbender, and The Legend of Korra, which belong to Nickelodeon, as well as to Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko.

Summary: To bloodbend is to take back control.

Warning: Spoilers for all of Korra, Book 1, and all of Airbender Book 3.  Also *Spoiler, highlight to read* canon violence, canon murder-suicide, canon child abuse, canon animal cruelty, bloodbenders bending blood, just general creepiness.

Creator Commentary: Happy Halloween!  And happy early birthday to me!


Bloodbenders Build a Levee




attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
You get ice cream!  And yes, part of this is the political scientist in me wanting to pretend that the Republicans haven't shut down my government, but still, ice cream!

Chocolate Strawberry Ice Cream

4 cups cream
1 cup milk
2 cups sugar
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 pound strawberries, frozen or fresh

Cut tops off strawberries, if they have them, and stew whole until they have released their liquid and/or melted.  Add sugar slowly, stirring until it resolves.  Add cocoa powder, and stir until thoroughly mixed.  Stew for one minute.  Take it off the heat and put it in a blender until pureed.  Put in the refrigerator to cool.

Mix cream and milk together.  when the chocolate strawberry syrup is room temperature, add to milk and cream and mix until homogenized.  Beat the mixture until it begins to rise and become just a little fluffy.  put into ice cream maker and make as the manufacturer instructs.

Feeds one cranky political science student, or four to six normal people.

Keep in mind, this ice cream has a really unpleasant brown/red color, so it might not be best for company or picky children.

attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
So this blog has been a dreary place lately, hasn't it?  But you know what, it's my birthday month, and I want to have some fun.

So what I want is for everybody to leave a fic rec, a gif set, a vid rec, an art rec, something, in the comments, and I'll respond with a rec of my own.  Any and all of the fandoms I have written for are included.
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)


This is Teddy.  Some of you might remember him.  When we got him, he was so skinny, and his hair was so thin that he shook like a leaf with the cold even in the middle of the summer.  So the first thing we did was buy him a tee shirt and feed him.  He's in much better shape now.  His hair has come in much thicker, and he has some weight on him, so he isn't cold all of the time, though he still has some more weight left to gain.  The problem is, his tee shirt has become his security blanket.  Most of the time, he's okay without it, but when he gets anxious or stressed, he asks for his tee shirt, and we put it on him.  He has some anxiety issues, and when he gets too stressed, he gets sick to his stomach and can't eat.  We're worried about what will happen when his tee shirt wears out.

This is his tee shirt:



The Petsmart website sells it here, but they only have it available in x-small, and we need a small.  It's a Petsmart exclusive product, so what I'm asking is if you can, please look through your local Petsmart for this Captain America shirt in small.  I am willing to pay for the shirt and the shipping.  We would like to have at least two extras.

This would be a really big help.  Thank you.

attackfish: Discretion prevented me from saying that I thought she was a fiend from the underworld (Lin Bei Fong MWT quote)
I don't usually like writing meta in the middle of a season, because I'm an insecure person who hates it when the show publicly destroys my theories, but here goes...
Spoilers abound )
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
I always seem to be late to these things.

Anyway, I'm bisexual, which most of you reading this probably know.  Bisexual people are in a very strange place, liable to suffer both homophobia, and also biphobia.  Both homophobia and biphobia are of course prevalent in the straight community, but biphobia is also very prevalent within the queer community.  It takes many forms, from the fears many lesbians have that bisexual women spread STDs, to the idea that all bisexual people are promiscuous, or that we need "one of each" (before I go on to other topics, I would like to note that this stereotype can fall especially heavy on people who are both bisexual and polyamorous, where the two become conflated, and the person who is both is shame for them.  There are plenty of monosexual that is gay or straight, polyamorous people, and plenty of bisexual monogamous people and plenty of people of all stripes who like one night stands), or that we are either gay and halfway in the closet, or secretly straight and doing it for the attention, or what have you.  But one of the most insidious is how the queer community pits two of its most marginalized communities against each other.

I mean of course, genderqueer people, who are themselves often treated horrifically within the queer community.  There is this idea that bisexuality as a sexual identity reenforces the gender binary.  This feeds off the idea that bisexuality is a somehow less valid sexual identity, and also serves to hold us up in opposition to genderqueer people, who do not fit in a gender binary world.  This puts enormous pressure on bisexual genderqueer people, obviously, as well as helps keep gays and lesbians at the center of the queer rights movement.  After all, if we're busy fighting each other, we can't demand equal shares in the movement that claims to represent us.

Worst of all, this supposed reinforcement of the binary that we bisexual people supposedly engage in by existing while bi is built on a single false assumption, that bisexual means attracted to both men and women.  This is absolutely not what it means, just as homosexual doesn't mean "attracted to men" or heterosexual doesn't mean "attracted to women."  Homosexual means "attracted to the same gender as one's self" and heterosexual means "attracted to a gender or genders different from one's own", and so bisexual means "attracted to the same gender as one's self and also a gender or gender different from one's own."  Bisexual as the attraction to both men and women is a definition forced onto bisexual people by non bisexual people, first by doctors, who themselves believed in the gender binary, who used the label bisexual for people they considered sexually deviant, and somewhere between homosexual and heterosexual.  They also considered us psychologically intersex, just as they thought gay men were psychologically women, so taking their word on our sexuality is more than a little ridiculous.  This definition is also used by people who buy into the gender binary and don't acknowledge the existence of other genders, and now sadly, within the queer community as a weapon against bisexual people.

The people who assert that bisexuality as a sexual identity is somehow automatically oppressive against non gender binary people frequently hold up the identity "pansexual", meaning "attracted to people of all genders and gender presentations independent of gender and gender presentation"  to us as a substitute term.  For many people, pansexual is the right term for them, and they wear it proudly.  For me, and many other bisexuals however, this is extremely unsatisfying.  Firstly, since it is much less well known, I would have to define the term for almost anyone I happened to use it with, which is exhausting, more exhausting than most people realize or understand.  However, I would be willing to do it if not for the fact that the term doesn't fit.  Like many other people who identify as bisexual, I am not "attracted to people of all genders and gender presentations independent of gender and gender presentation".  Gender and gender presentation is very much a part of the attraction process for me.  I am, for example, more attracted to women then to men, and more attracted to people who present masculinity and femininity simultaneously than I am to people who eschew gender signifiers altogether.  There is no room in pansexuality for this difference of attraction.

The people who assert that bisexuality as a sexual identity is somehow automatically oppressive against non gender binary people also ignore the fact that the terms gay, lesbian and straight do in fact rely on the gender binary to derive their meaning.  A genderqueer person who identifies as neither male or female attracted to people of the same gender as their own would be homosexual, but not either gay or lesbian, for example.  A genderqueer person who identifies as neither male nor female attracted to another gender, man, woman, different nonbinary gender from their own, would be heterosexual, but not straight.  Also, I as a bisexual woman, when I am not attracted to a specific gender, am seen as devaluing the gender identity of the people of that gender, when monosexed people, especially gays, lesbians, and straights, aren't usually seen to be doing the same.  For example, a gay man is probably never going to be accused of devaluing the gender identity of a woman by not being attracted to her.  This insistance that I should be pansexual, should be attracted to all genders equally, because I am attracted to many genders posits implicitly that my sexuality is somehow a choice, one of the very ideas the queer community has been against, at least when it comes to monosexuality.

There is of course bigotry against genderqueer people within the bisexual community, just as there is within the straight community, and within the gay and lesbian community.  And when a bisexual person says that they aren't attracted to "fake genders", this is a devaluing of the gender identity of non gender binary people just as it is a devaluation of the gender identities of trans* people when a lesbian woman says that she is not attracted to trans* women because they aren't "real women".  We within the bisexual community need to stand against this.  But bisexuality as a sexual identity is not somehow inherently binariest, and oppressive.  It simply is.

I leave you with the definition of bisexuality given to us by bisexual activist Robyn Ochs:

"I call myself bisexual because I acknowledge that I have in myself the potential to be attracted - romantically and/or sexually - to people of more than one sex and/or gender, not necessarily at the same time, not necessarily in the same way, and not necessarily to the same degree."
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
The library here in Alabama is so much bigger than the one back home.  I swear, my old library could fit into the Children’s section of this one.  I love it.  I have tests proctored there, and the whole place smells so wonderfully of books that I just can’t help taking a few home each time.  Anyway, I finally had the chance to read Bitterblue, the sequel to Graceling and Fire.

Eight years have passed since Katsa killed the cruel king Leck of Monsea, and the scars he has left behind run deep.  His daughter, Queen Bitterblue has only just come of age.  Reliant on her father’s damaged, guilt-stricken advisers to help rule her kingdom and repair the damage her father wrought, Bitterblue feels trapped and useless in her own castle.  But when she starts to sneak out of the castle at night and into the city, she gets much, much more than she had bargained for.

As ever, there are spoilers below the cut, but I have tried not to give away anything too big.  Also, Bitterblue, and my review of it, need all the trigger warnings: rape, murder, torture, child sexual abuse, self harm, suicide, gaslighting, domestic abuse more generally...  No, seriously, everything.  I’m sure I’m missing a few.

This kind always began the usual way of stories- perhaps two people falling in love, or a clever child trying to solve a mystery. But just as you thought you knew where the story was going, it would end abruptly, when the lovers or the child vanished with no explanation, never to be seen again. )

Bitterblue is a solid, thrilling, third installment in the Graceling universe, one which leaves many questions still to be answered.  I hope Cashore continues the series!

Kristin Cashore can be found online at her blog, This is My Secret.
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
I have just realized I will not be able to watch the Legend of Korra premier because I will be at the temple for Yom Kippur.  This is... Nooooooooo!

One an unrelated note, any word on when Book Two will be on iTunes?
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
Yes, I know it's a little late, but on Thursday, I was busy alternating between throwing up and shivering in bed, watching The Prince of Egypt, and yesterday, my grandmother's dog passed away unexpectedly, so I think I can be excused.

Anyway, Happy New Year, to all my fellow Jewish people!

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