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Giraffable verisimilitude

@anonsally / anonsally.tumblr.com

The fandom component of this blog is mostly about adaptations of classic English literature. I reblog some gifsets but I tend slightly more in the direction of analysis and meta. Not currently watching anything, though. Other topics: random personal things, books and authors I like, movies or plays I've seen, modern dance, art, math, other nerdy things, giraffes, the (imagined) middle school lives of small birds, feminism, and the occasional cat. Also, occasionally I post (mostly U.S.) political stuff, generally under the tags #politics and #activism if you need to blacklist to keep your Tumblr dash a happy place.

I’ve reached Chapters 7-8 in my Persuasion reread, covering both the first (renewed) meeting and first (renewed) social contact between Anne and Captain Wentworth, and I put the book back on the nightstand after these two chapters because I needed to stare at the ceiling and scream internally. They contain, of course, some of the most famous/fateful passages in the novel, but also: as Austen shows us the awkwardness of these encounters, Anne’s yearning and Frederick’s resentment, she is simultaneously showing us how in love they were, and how well-suited, arguably, they still are.

I love Anne so much, and while she may be valued primarily for her usefulness, she is in fact an extremely passionate woman. (She’s also sad.) She is genuinely glad to avoid Wentworth and to be useful to her nephew. But she’s also painfully aware that she is “left with as many sensations of comfort, as were, perhaps, ever likely to be hers.” I can’t help connecting this to Lady Russell’s earlier reflection that she thinks Anne is uniquely well-suited by temperament and habits to marriage, to the life she would have as a wife and mother. Anyway. Then we get the first meeting, and poor Anne is so overwhelmed that she can’t take everything in. But after the fact we learn that, while she is barely absorbing the words and actions of those around her, she has also noticed, in some detail, that Frederick Wentworth is at least as good-looking as he was eight years ago. Anne. And it’s her perspective that gives us the “no two hearts so open” passage, in which she also reflects that they once would have found it “most difficult to cease to speak to one another,” even in the sort of social gathering where he is currently making himself so agreeable, and she is unobserved (except by him.)

Anne cannot reason herself out of feeling as strongly as she did eight years ago. But neither, we are allowed to suspect, can Wentworth, though he has convinced himself that is exactly what he has done. Our gallant captain is extremely – not to say somewhat disturbingly – good at turning harrowing, or at least dangerous, undertakings into fun dinner-party stories. But there is, perhaps, some bitterness in his remark that there would have been no one to think of him, had he been unsuccessful in outrunning a storm in an old and badly damaged ship. There is definitely a catch in his voice, a break in his thought, when he reflects that when he and Harville were chasing privateers together, only one of them had a wife to provide for. When he is forced to defend his “superfine, extraordinary sort of gallantry” as an unmarried man (drag him, Sophia), he is shortly afterwards impelled to rise from the sofa where he and Anne are sitting, and go definitely elsewhere. When he assures Admiral Croft that he was indeed grateful to be sent across the Atlantic in a ship classified as being only seaworthy for short distances and for a limited period of time, he all but confesses that in the aftermath of Anne’s breaking their engagement, he didn’t care whether he lived or died. And even in cheerfully telling his sister he is ready to marry, whether wisely or no, he defines what he wants in reference to Anne, whose equal (in his own opinion) he has never seen. Frederick Wentworth, you thick-skulled genius, get it together.

I think a lot about how we as a culture have turned “forever” into the only acceptable definition of success.

Like… if you open a coffee shop and run it for a while and it makes you happy but then stuff gets too expensive and stressful and you want to do something else so you close it, it’s a “failed” business. If you write a book or two, then decide that you don’t actually want to keep doing that, you’re a “failed” writer. If you marry someone, and that marriage is good for a while, and then stops working and you get divorced, it’s a “failed” marriage.

The only acceptable “win condition” is “you keep doing that thing forever”. A friendship that lasts for a few years but then its time is done and you move on is considered less valuable or not a “real” friendship. A hobby that you do for a while and then are done with is a “phase” - or, alternatively, a “pity” that you don’t do that thing any more. A fandom is “dying” because people have had a lot of fun with it but are now moving on to other things.

I just think that something can be good, and also end, and that thing was still good. And it’s okay to be sad that it ended, too. But the idea that anything that ends is automatically less than this hypothetical eternal state of success… I don’t think that’s doing us any good at all.

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pruningthemindsgarden

All things are temporary, so if you expect permanence then you are only setting yourself up for inevitable failure

SMBC did a comic about how having the ability to master many different things within a lifetime means you are born with the ability to live many lives, and this radically altered my way of thinking about the world.

[Spoilers for Fire Island (2022)]

Some of my favorite pride and prejudice adaptation choices from the movie Fire Island:

  • I mean the Bennets as queer found family is everything to me. it’s absolutely everything to me i think every iconic family from the literary classics should be adapted to the modern era as queer found family actually
  • Mrs. Bennet as an ostentatious and over-the-top but ultimately well-meaning and loving lesbian mother figure is so fucking inspired and Margaret Cho as this version of Mrs. Bennet??? they had their third eye wide fucking open with that casting choice [E: OH also how the Bennets’ struggle with wealth/social standing turned into Margaret Cho’s character having to sell their house on Fire Island! I thought that was such a fun and smart decision especially in the evolution of that storyline and how it impacted the character arcs in particular!]
  • The choice to adapt the Bennets publically embarrassing themselves at various dances as getting overly drunk and puking on everything was hilarious and tonally on point (and also as someone who had to act as the sober and sane one at a party of too-drunk people just last week way too timely lol)
  • i think when doing a modern-day adaptation of a jane austen novel it’s really easy to flatten or oversimplify the nuances of the social and class commentary built into those stories but mapping the complexity of p&p’s social hierarchy onto the gay subculture of the Fire Island’s Pines party and exploring the intersection of gayness with class, race, and body dysmorphia ended up fitting the spirit of the book so well, it was such a brilliant choice your MIND mr. joel kim booster!!!
  • Moreover those already existing themes of social/class commentary being integrated so seamlessly into Noah and Howie’s (Lizzie and Jane’s) experiences as queer Asian Americans, how that strengthens their relationship with each other and how that experience has impacted the way they interact with the world and protect themselves from societal pressures in such different ways (Noah being more outspoken to mask his own set of insecurities, Howie being more withdrawn but still having his own brand of quiet strength, etc.) and how that is deconstructed through their parallel character arcs - and the layers of Will (Darcy) being a queer Asian American (specifically of mixed heritage amidst a social circle of mostly white affluent men - the way in which Noah assumes he fits into that world but the subtle ways the movie challenges and breaks down that assumption to show that Will feels out of place in that world too) as well!!! If I had the braincells to scream about this for another ten thousand words i absolutely would
  • The way they kept Will writing Noah the letter for plot reasons that made sense - he remembered that Noah’s phone wasn’t working from one throwaway comment about how he’s the only one in the group who doesn’t have a phone! Will is exactly the kind of socially awkward but thoughtful nerd who feels more comfortable expressing himself through the written word! - made me SWOON i cannot believe they kept that in a way that worked SO WELL in such a ROMANTIC WAY!!!
  • Also just. Everything about Conrad Ricamora as Will/Mr. Darcy. can i say that’s a favorite adaptation choice of mine bc it absolutely is. Matthew Mcfayden and Colin Firth whomst i only know Will “saw his crush and immediately threw his ice cream cone into a bush and bolted away” lastname

I think we have culturally had this vision of pandemics being like the pandemic in Station Eleven, or any other piece of pandemic-based media, where it would hit fast and spread fast and most people who got ill would die. This despite the fact that we knew previous epidemics/pandemics weren’t like that–H1N1 spread pretty fast but didn’t have a high mortality rate, Ebola is very deadly and O.G. SARS somewhat deadly but the spread could be contained, AIDS acts over such a long timescale that it’s hard even to compare it to some of these other viruses. 

My dad used to work on business continuity plans for major infrastructure, like hydro and telecom, hospitals and food supply chains. At that time their pandemic planning was based on numbers that would make us laugh today. I think it started with something like: if 30% of your staff have to take one unanticipated sick day within a one-month period, would you be able to continue to operate at capacity? And then it continued from there, up to scenarios where 30% of your staff being out sick on the same day, and how you would handle that to make sure people still have electricity and phone service and medical care and food. (They did business continuity plans for other disasters as well–this was in the mid 2000s so right after both SARS and the blackout.) 

Then this pandemic came. And a lot of the assumptions that had been in the business continuity plans didn’t necessarily come through. Working from home was possible for a much bigger section of the workforce on a much bigger scale than people would have assumed even a few years ago. More mitigation efforts like distancing and masks were introduced than some of those plans anticipated. And then when things were looking okay I think a lot of businesses just threw those plans out. 

Except now we’ve learned that this pandemic isn’t like a movie pandemic–that the spread is fast, but not dramatically so; that the mortality rate is higher than a lot of common illnesses, but lower than a theoretical zombie bite–a lot of people have tricked themselves into thinking that the death toll is the only metric that matters. And all those businesses and industries that just tossed their business continuity plans out the window are now facing the exact kind of scenarios that the less dire version of those plans were supposed to resolve: being expected to operate at capacity despite large numbers of staff absences. And while the airline is struggling to find enough flight crew who aren’t sick, passengers are annoyed that their flight is cancelled because they want to go on vacation because, hey, even if they get it, it’s not that bad, right? 

Anyway bring back mask mandates etc.

Feliz dia Internacional dos gatos! 

A artista mais gateira com certeza celebraria essa data com seus bichanos e outros amigos gateiros como Leonora Carrington. Esses são apenas alguns dos gatos que aparecem em obras de Remédios Varo. Os nomes das pinturas seguem abaixo:

* O relojoeiro . The clockmaker

* O roubo da substancia . The theft of the substance

* Energia cosmica . Cosmic energy

* Os animais . The animals

* A tecedora vermelha . The red weaver

*O vagabundo . Vagabond 

* Mimetismo . Mimicry

* O gato samambaia . The fern cat 

* O paraíso dos gatos . The cats paradise

* Visita inesperada . Unexpected visit

The greatest cat lady artist of all would certainly celebrate today’s data. These are just some of the cats that Remedios Varo add to her art. Up above you can check the paintings’ titles where each of the meows are. A happy Cats International Day to you all.

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god, GOD Freddie Mercury was such a fucking badass

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tiny-septic-box-sam

This doesn’t do the moment justice. He took the swig of vodka, said “I’ll fucking do it darling”, and then ABSOLUTELY NAILED IT in one fucking take

Mood for 2019: “I’ll fucking do it, darling.”

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insanelycoolish

Reblog for Freddie Mercury level belief in yourself this new year! 

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wodneswynn

I’ll fucking do it, darling

'Strong female lead' this 'strong female lead' that. what about my WEAK female leads??? What about the girls who are clinically tired?? Who don't speak up for themselves?? Who get taken advantage of in society??? Who get pushed to the side??? Who are naive??? Who let opportunities and happiness slip through their fingers?? What about girls that listen to their aunts advice to not marry a gentleman?? What about girls who meet that gentleman years later and have to be polite even though they're dying inside??? Who have to pine weeks on end believing he hates them only to find out through a letter that he's been in half agony half hope??? What about them????