and just the fact that she's a black woman confronting a white woman about this

End || Bucky x Reader

Summary → After discovering Bucky’s affair with none other than The Black Widow, you feel the need to confront the situation and walk away. 

Word Count → 1.3K

Warnings → Cursing, implied sex/smut, mostly just really angsty!

A/N → Based on this request: “Do you think you could write a Bucky x Reader where he leaves her for Natasha or another woman, and with “ When you realise that you made a mistake, don’t come looking for me ” please ? Angst and maybe fluff if possible ? I love your writing !” Been doing a lot of angst lately, which I surprisingly enjoy? Let me know what y’all think!

“You know, I would have come straight to Bucharest, if you had bothered to pick up any of my calls. Or answered any of my text messages.”

The trademark jet-black knapsack that had somehow become permanently entangled with Bucky slipped through his metal digits, landing with light thud against the hardwood floor. Even from beneath his navy ball cap, Bucky’s gaze was sharp, inspecting you with an expression that bred uncertainty and worry in the pit of your stomach. You remained misty-eyed as you watched the enormous man approach you with caution, somehow entirely different than the man you remembered; the man you had once fallen hopelessly in love with.

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Can we just..

Can we just talk about Teen Fucking Titans

This show was amazing, like Teen Titans Go can not live up to the amount of messages and things that Teen Titans taught. Like that shit got super dark and deep at one point. 

A few examples

1) The episode that talked about racism

There was an actual episode of Teen Titans that talked about racism and the person being racist was not the usual bad guy/weird looking dude. No the guy being racist was a actual hero. It’s amazing how much this episode taught. It talked about how even the greatest heroes in the world can be the world’s biggest asshole.

What happened was a man named Val Yor, an amazing hero, met the teen titans. Now Starfire is a Tamaranian. When Val Yor learns that, he calls her a ‘Troq’, which is basically a word that insults all Tamaranian’s. Despite Starfire being the cutest thing ever, Val Yor refused to accept her, because she was a Tamaranian.

If that wasn’t even enough, then came the ending. 

Now at one point in the episode Starfire saves Val Yor’s ass from dying. She did what ever she could to help. But at the end, Val Yor still called her a Troq. It’s amazing that even though Starfire saved Val Yor, he still insulted her culture or her ‘people’. At the end, when Val Yor leaves in his space ship straight after insulting Tamaranian’s. Starfire says “There is nothing you have done, there will always be people who say mean words because you are different” and if that doesn’t convince you that Starfire is amazing then I don’t know what will.

2) Feeling Replaced

In one episode, Blackfire (Starfire’s sister), comes to visit her. Starfire is extremely happy and all. Until, her friends start liking Blackfire a little bit more than she wants them to. She bonds with each and everyone of them (even Raven) and even got a little too close to Robin. Starfire felt diminished and a little hurt that they would ignore her for Blackfire. But Starfire didn’t feel truly replaced until the Teen Titans asked for Blackfire to join the Teen Titans. Starfire then attempts to run away, feeling like Blackfire would be better than her.

At the end of the episode, Robin confronts Starfire after Blackfire goes to jail. Starfire explains about how everyone seemed to be really enjoying Blackfire and was glad that the truth was figured out before she was replaced. In response to that, Robin denies it. He explains to her that Starfire was a one of a kind girl and that she would never be replaced. 

I think this episode explains a lot about feelings of abandoment and that simple things telling someone how they never will be replaced will help them. 

3) Fears

Now we all know Raven is a bit hard headed and doesn’t like showing emotions. Now in this episode, the Teen Titans decide to have a movie night. This movie turns out to be a horror movie. After the movie is over all of the Teen Titans show their emotions of being extremely being scared of the movie except for Raven who denies being scared. Later that night, all the Teen Titans are awoken be a sound. The episode continues as the Teen Titans try to find out who is making the sounds, and as they progress one by one, all the teen titans mysteriously start disappearing. All, except Raven. When only Raven is left, a monster attacks her. Raven chants that she is not scared of the monster. But eventually realization dawned on her that she was scared and that was how she defeated the monster. Turns out, the monster was something Raven made with her magic unwillingly because of her fear. 

This episode is definitely one of the horror episodes. If it was a real life horror movie, I would have freaked. But anyways, this episode explains so much. It talks about how you shouldn’t be afraid to face you fears and use it to your advantage. So what if you’re scared? That’s completely normal. It talks about taking that fear and not letting it stop you from doing what you want.

4) Puberty

Yes people, Teen Fucking Titans talked about puberty. When I rewatched this episode as a teen, I realized that there was an actual episode that talked about dealing with puberty

Now in this episode, Starfire starts growing weird things around her body. First a large bump forms on her head, then she soon gets scales and her fingernails become long and black and white. If that wasn’t bad enough her feet turn large and start growing hair. Starfire feels extremely self conscious of her self and cover her self up entirely in order to hide her self from her friends because of fear of being laughed at. It all goes to doom when Teen Titans get an alarm for a monster. The entire get up comes off and everyone sees how Starfire looks. Starfire, in a state of panic, fly’s in to space and decides to live at a another planet because she couldn’t face her friends. Problem was each and every planet she went to they would kick her off because they thought she was too scary. 

When Starfire lands on one planet, she meets a woman, who explains to her that it’s normal for a Tamaranian to get like this after a certain stage and that each and every Tamaranian goes through a different process. But this woman turns out to be a Tamaranian eater and tries to eat her when the rest of the Teen Titans save her. Starfire does eventually turn back to normal and even gains a new power. The Teen Titans tell her that they would never judge Starfire on the way she looks.

Now this episode explains a lot. This was probably one of my favorite episodes especially because of the fact it talks about how hard it is going through puberty, Not only that but it explains about how everyone goes through it differently and that it’s not your fault. It also tells you that, it may be one hell of a ride and that it’s gonna be tough, but when it’s over good things will come out of it. 

5) The First Time They Met

Now I couldn’t get the proper picture I was looking for, but its with Cyborg and Raven. Now this is a iconic moment from the entire and it all started out with the first time all of them met. Now we all know Raven is the daughter of a devil who wants to take over the world, so when she does help the Teen Titans, she doesn’t feel welcome in the group. She feels as though she was different because her main purpose was to destroy the Earth not save it. So when Cyborg learn about this, the famous quote he says is “He’s green, half of me is metal and she’s from outer space, you fit in just fine”. I don’t really need to say much because the quote explains it all. 

Parental Instinct

Jiyong lifts your daughter, pulling her up to rest on his hip, her eyes scanning the shelf of candy in front of her.

‘Which ones do you want, princess?’ He asks her, swaying her backwards and forwards.  

‘How many can I have?’ She casts her round, almond eyes at him, blinking her butterfly eyelashes.

‘As many as you want.’ He chuckles, his lips dusting her forehead.

‘No, Ji…,’ You warn him sternly, your hand coming to rest gently on his bicep. ‘She will make you buy the whole shelf.’ He shrugs ambivalently at you, a single eyebrow dancing upwards.

‘Yeobo, let me spoil her, huh? I haven’t spent time with her in two weeks…’ You shake your head, knowing that not matter what you said, your daughter would get what she wanted from her father. Her four year old self was the apple of his eye.

‘I want that one.’ Your daughter points to a coffee chocolate bar, and Jiyong reaches for it, slightly taken aback.

‘You picked this one? Do you know what it is, Jaeeun?’ His asks curiously as his hand wraps around it, bringing it closer to her face.

‘Yes. It’s coffee and chocolate together.’ She replies with confidence. Jiyong’s eyes furrow in confusion.

‘But Jaeeun, you don’t eat coffee, huh?’ The bar hovers in front of her.

‘I know. But I thought about Mummy. You didn’t say you would buy her one, and I wanted to get her that one because it is her favourite.’ She blinks at him as if her decision was the most obvious thing in the world. Your husband nods in knowing, a pleased smile spreading on his face, mimicking the pleasant feeling inside your heart.

‘Ahhh, my daughter.’ He sighs contently, pressing his lips against her cheek. ‘You have such a kind heart.’ She squiggles against his kiss.

‘Not you. You forgot Mum.’ If there was one thing your daughter had inherited from your husband, it was his confidence. She was never one to let her voice go unheard.

‘I didn’t forget.,’ Jiyong states calmly. ‘I was helping you pick first.’

‘But Mummy needs help too, and sometimes you don’t help her… like when she asks you to wash the dishes.’

‘Jaeeun, pick some candy, huh? We’re going to be late to see Uncle Youngbae.’ You press her into a decision, and she picks another candy bar, wrapped delicately in a pink wrapper. Jiyong reaches for it, clutching it in his hand.

‘That one is for Uncle Bae. He likes strawberries. And Dad, you can have… the same one as me.’ She pauses, contemplating the choices, before pointing to Jiyong’s favourite - a mint chocolate bar. He adds two of them quickly to his now stretched fist.

‘Good choice, Jaeeun!’ He nods in pleasure, before dropping her slowly down from his hip, handing her two of the candy bars to carry. She toddles straight to the counter, her balance perfect as her hands wave the candy bars excitedly. Jiyong had picked her outfit today - black skinny jeans tucked into her miniature doc marten boots and a blue and white striped t shirt peeking out from under a green army coat. The coat waggled after her, and you noted the content look on your husbands face, satisfied with his wardrobe decision. You both followed her to the counter, Jiyong taking it upon himself to lift her up so she was able to place the chocolate on top of it. He adds his two, smiling at the old woman behind the counter.

‘How many are there?’ He asks her, his English twinged thickly with an accent. Despite his lack of complete fluency, Jiyong made every effort to immerse your daughter in English. It was something you were both trying to do - talk to her in English, so she became bilingual quickly. Her Korean had inexplicably developed far more rapidly than you’d expected, and she was sometimes still mixing her words when she spoke in English. As your parents only spoke English, it was important to you that she became fluent in your native language as well. Her face furrowed in concentration as she counted.

‘One, two, three… sa!’ She giggled in glee, knowing the annoyance the Korean would bring to her father.

‘Yah, Jaeeun… Am I speaking Korean?’ He presses gently, tickling her in a non-aggressive fashion.

‘Dad, I want to give the lady the money…’ She switches back to Korean, holding her hand open, palm flat for Jiyong to place money in. He reached into his back pocket, balancing your daughter carefully on his hip.

‘Okay, Okay. Wait a minute, huh, princess.’

‘Oh, wow. Your Korean is very good!’ The woman behind the counter comments happily as she begins scanning the items, the smile on her face crinkling her eyes. You can see Jiyong’s body tense instinctively, his movement for his wallet pausing in a split second.

‘Of course it is.,’ Your daughter comments confidently. ‘I’m Korean.’ Her statement is one of fact. Jiyong continues to withdraw his wallet, his movement strained slightly.

‘No you aren’t.’ The woman replies, her tone equally as confident. Jiyong’s head, which had been tilted slightly towards your daughter, snaps forward to look at the woman. If there is one thing he was sensitive about, it was the perception other Koreans had about his daughters race.

‘I am… I’m Korean.,’ Your daughters brow furrows slightly, confusion flooding her face. ‘My daddy always says…’

‘Look at your Mum. Look at you… You can’t be Korean.’ Despite her pleasant tone, her voice was becoming more forceful. Your daughters eyes begin to fill with tears, her face turning as they pooled in her wide set eyes.

‘Dad, am I Korean?’ She questions, her voice unsteady.

‘Of course you are, Jaeeun. This woman doesn’t know what she is talking about.’ He cuts in sharply.

‘Ji, let’s just go, huh? Youngbae is going to be waiting for us…’ You knew what was coming. The tension leaching from Jiyong’s body was becoming palpable. Your hands reach for your daughter, and Jiyong passes her to you willingly. Her face burrows into your scarf as you pull her into a hug, her wet tears mixing into the wool.

‘My daughter’s Korean isn’t good - it’s great, because its her first language.,’ His voice has become louder and more blusterous with anger, and your daughter retreats further into you, her tiny arms climbing inside your coat. You cradle her, turning away from Jiyong and the woman. ‘You, though, have an extremely narrow minded view of the world. Of course my daughter is Korean. She has lived here her entire life and has only left the country twice.’

‘But…’ The woman, taken aback by Jiyong’s confrontation, opens her mouth in an attempted rebuttal.

‘No buts. She is Korean. Who the hell are you to say she isn’t and upset her?,’ He opens his wallet, removing a few bills of cash. You catch them out of the corner of your eye, a handful of hundred thousand weon notes. ‘Keep the change. Use it to buy some damn empathy, huh?’ He flicks the notes onto the counter roughly, his fist in an easy swoop, before turning to stalk out of the store. You follow him, your daughter still clinging to you, her face not showing. You coo gently in an attempt to encourage her out.

‘Jaeeun? Are you okay?’ You switch to Korean in an effort to console her, your voice nervously stumbling over the syllables you could usually pronounce without effort. Her head shakes a negative response. Jiyong continues his rapid pace, his long, thin legs carrying him quicker than you could keep step with. He stops abruptly, his body coming to a halt just in front of you. You pause, approaching him. ‘Ji, slow down, huh? I can’t keep up.’ He turns, his head shaking is disbelief, collecting a deep breath.

‘Sorry, I’m just…,’ He huffs, unable to articulate his words correctly. Your head nods down to your daughter, to draw his attention to her distress. His eyes close, his face crinkling to draw inner strength.

‘Jaeeun-ah.,’ He steps forward, his voice low in comfort. ‘Daddy’s not mad at you, huh? You know that right?’ Her small head peaks out from the grooves of your scarf, eyeing Jiyong suspiciously.

‘I don’t know.,’ She replies honestly. ‘I’m confused.’ Jiyong lets out a lengthy sigh, before offering his arms to your daughter. She twists, shifting her weight into him so he was able to swing her onto the ground, allowing her to come to a standing position. She turns to face him, and he bends on his knees to crouch down to her level. His hands clutch her shoulders gently.

‘I’m not angry with you at all. I’m angry at that woman. You did nothing wrong, okay?,’ His hands smooth down her arms, coming to clutch her tiny hands. ‘She was being very rude to you, and when someone is rude to you that makes me angry. No one should be allowed to make you feel bad by being rude to you. Ever. Do you understand that?’ Your daughter blinks her wet lashes at her father, a small nod coming from her head.

‘Why did she say that I’m not Korean? You always told me that I am Korean.’ Her brows furrow, confusion threaded over her face. You can’t bare to look at her, so your eyes flick to Jiyong. To his credit, his face remains staunchly calm.

‘Some people think that if your Mum or Dad is from a different country, you can’t be Korean.,’ He responds. ‘But those people are just stupid. When they say that you aren’t Korean, you have to tell them they’re stupid, okay? In your biggest, loudest voice.’ His fingers reach up to nip her cheek in a pinch, and she giggles excitedly.

‘I can call them stupid?’ Both her eyebrows arch in surprise.

‘You can. I’m going to let you say that to them, but only them okay? I don’t want to hear you calling anyone else stupid.’ She nods her head in understanding, her little secret agreement between her father and her bringing a widening grin to her face.

‘I won’t. I promise. But she was stupid!’ She shakes her hands, unable to calm her physical excitement at saying the world. A deep chuckle rumbles from Jiyong’s throat.

‘Who loves you?’ Jiyong asks, kissing his palm and balling his hand, holding his clenched fist out for Jaeeun. She leans forward, and he opens his palm, pressing it into her exposed, plump cheek. His fingers burst into movement, dancing down her neck to tickle her. It was their secret greeting. You’d had no idea where it had originated from, but they both adored it.

‘You do.’ She giggles happily, her shoulders shrugging up to avoid his fingers.

‘I do.,’ He pauses, looking at her, his hand cradling her face. ‘Come give me a hug, my Korean princess.’ She moves quickly into him, slotting easily between his crouched knees as her hands reached up to wrap around his neck. He pulls her close, lifting her feet slightly off the ground with the power of his hug. He holds her, longer than usual, the emotion he was feeling seeping through him. He settles her down again, his arms still holding her, but loosening slightly to allow her to step back.

‘Are you sad, Daddy?’ She questions as she studies his face.

‘A little bit.,’ He answers truthfully. ‘I don’t like it when people make you upset or when you cry.’ Her hands reach up to his face, squishing his cheeks to purse his lips. She leans forward, mushing her lips into his happily, planting a loving kiss on them.

‘I’m not sad anymore, Dad.,’ She says simply. ‘That lady was just stupid.’ She pushes his cheeks once more, before letting him go.

‘Ahh, my smart Jaeeun.’ He replies with a smile. She wiggles out of his arms, taking his hand.

‘Uncle Bae is waiting for us. Let’s hurry.’ She chugs him into motion, her legs thundering on the path as they break into a run. Jiyong stalls, his eyes flicking back to you to ensure you were following, hand reaching out to clasp yours excitedly, and you take it, running after them both.


A heavy sigh leaves his lips as he removes his t shirt, discarding it neatly into the wicker washing basket at the end of the bed. His head folds down, his hands running through his hair, haphazardly spraying the black strands in multiple directions. Despite his resolve in front of Jaeeun, it was obvious his mind was still lingering on the incident earlier in the day. You place your kindle on the beside table, peeking at him over the rim of your reading glasses. Jiyong had put Jaeeun to sleep hours ago. You’d watched him lay her onto the bed, the new stuffed unicorn from Youngbae taking up most of the space. He’d kissed her goodnight and told her she was beautiful, staying to let her hug his arm until she’d fallen asleep. He’d disappeared into the study shortly after and you hadn’t seen him since.

‘Do you want to talk about it?’ You press lightly, eyes scanning him. His frame sinks lower, head bobbing further still.

‘No.,’ His answer is short and simple. He stands, deep in contemplation, and you throw back the covers, swinging your feed over the edge of the high bed frame. You pad your way to him, your silk sleep dress swishing against you lightly. You approach Jiyong, your arms wrapping warmly around his sunken body, your head coming to lay on his wide shoulder blades across the top of his back. ‘Do you think I scared her? I mean, she has never really seen me angry before.’

‘You didn’t scare her at all, Ji. She was just a bit confused. You didn’t do anything wrong.’ You murmur the words into his back, a kiss pressing against the bare skin of his tattooed neck, your lips tracing the lines of ink. Another sigh leaves him, and he sinks into your embrace. Throughout your relationship, you’d learned very early that Jiyong was much more sensitive than he let on. It was one of the most endearing traits about him. However, you understood how hard it was for him to grapple with the copious amounts of empathy he felt for others. He’d often wear their struggles longer than they would. ‘You saw her with Youngbae… She was over the moon. I doubt she is even going to remember it tomorrow.’

‘I know she seemed okay… I just got so angry about it I couldn’t control myself. I can’t stop thinking about how easily that woman shot her down. I want her to have confidence and we’ve both worked so hard to surround her with positive influences. It’s upsetting that in one second someone can say something so casually and it can have such a big impact on her. How could she say that to our child?’ You cradle him, rocking gently back and forward, your head resting on him.

‘We can’t protect her forever.’ Your response seems simple, and he chuckles slightly at your words.

‘You mean I can’t lock her in a tower away from the rest of the world?,’ He shifts your arms gently, his palms pressing to open your hands. He turns, coming to face you, his arms connecting around your body. He meets your eyes, carefully considering your face. ‘It’s not that I want to do that. It’s just I know people are going to see her as less of a person because she’s only half Korean. I know what the lady meant when she was saying she wasn’t Korean. She was saying she wasn’t good enough to be Korean. It made me upset… It made me really, really angry that someone could say that to my daughter. If people say things like that to her, she is going to start doubting herself.’ Your hand reaches up to cup his face, drawing it close to you for a sweet, lingering kiss. The amount of love Jiyong had for your daughter was boundless, and it was something you found intensely attractive.

‘I know, Ji. I know it’s hard. I didn’t know what to say when it happened because I was angry too. It’s difficult, and her life will be difficult. I can’t deny that. But we’re teaching Jaeeun to be a strong, thoughtful, caring person. That’s all we can do. Maybe she won’t get angry about this kind of stuff, but simply feel sorry for people who were taught such a narrow minded view.,’ You kiss his lips again, the fluffy cushion pressing against you with more vigour. ‘I know she has an amazing father that is going to fight for her whenever she needs it. I know she is going to be just as sympathetic and have the same amount of empathy as he does. I can already see it in her, Ji. We don’t have to worry about her.’

‘You’re right.,’ He nods, his gaze shifting off you. ‘You’re totally right. I just hate seeing her upset.’ He shakes his head to snap out of his daze.

‘You wouldn’t be a good father if you didn’t, and it’s one of the reasons she loves you and trusts you as much as she does.,’ Your hand reaches to his face, cupping his cheek to stroke your thumb across it. ‘And one of the reasons I love you as much as I do, too.’ He leans forward, enveloping you in a long, drawn out kiss. His lips rub softly against yours, his tongue exploring your mouth. His hands slip low over your hips, coming to cradle the rounded cheeks of your bum. His kiss continues, building in passion.

‘Daddy… Mummy…’ Your daughters voice shatters the moment, calling from behind the closed door. Jiyong breaks apart, his shoulders sagging in disappointment.

‘Damn it… that was going somewhere.,’ He let’s out a low sigh, breaking from your hug. ‘Yes, princess?’ He calls.

‘Daddy?’ She calls again. Jiyong walks quickly to the door, peeling it open.

‘What is it, Jaeeun? You’re meant to be sleeping…’ His voice trails off when he sees her, her own face quivering as their eyes meet, her wet cheeks flooding with more tears.

‘I… I had… I had… a dream… and the… unicorn… died.’ Jiyong sweeps her up in his arms, her wet cheeks burying against his skin.

‘It’s alright, Jaeeun. It’s still there in your bed, huh?’ He coos to comfort her.

‘Daddy… I’m scared.’ She manages to splutter out. Jiyong bumps her gently up and down, shifting to the bed as he attempted to ease her worry.

‘That’s okay, princess. You can sleep here with us.’ You couldn’t fault his suggestion. Your daughter was rarely scared, and for the most part slept through the night. For her to be this upset was unusual. With his free hand, he threw back the covers, before gently laying her down between the crisp whiteness of the Egyptian cotton sheets. She let out a groan, holding her arms out to desperately to Jiyong as he let her go.

‘Daddy, no… You have to stay.’

‘I know, Princess. I’m just getting into bed.,’ He climbs next to her, snuggling himself up to her, and she accepts his hug gratefully. ‘Do you want Mummy to join us too?’ He suggested, his fingers sweeping over Jaeeun’s face to wipe the tears off her eyes. Your daughter nods eagerly, sitting up slightly to encourage you into the bed.

‘Come on, Mummy.’ Her voice is still croaky from her tears. You oblige her request, walking to the other side of the bed. You adjust the covers over both your daughter and husband, pulling them up to their necks, before peeling back the corner of your own side of the bed. It was spacious enough, and Jaeeun was small enough, that her presence made no difference to your comfort. However, you found Jiyong shifting closer to you and sandwiching your daughter between you. She rotates slightly, her sleepy head curling into your shoulder while her arm reaches back to touch her father. Her face is full of innocence and you again can’t help but think how a complete stranger could have been so forceful with her today.

‘Good night, Princess.’ You whisper to her. She leans forward, her lips pressing into yours in a goodnight kiss.

‘Goodnight, Mummy. I love you.’ 

Sherlolly Week 2017, Day 1: First Meeting

Prompt: First Meeting (Non-Canon/Headcanon)

Rating: T, for a tiny curse.

A/N: This is a soulmates AU imagining of their first meeting, in which a timer on one’s wrist stops counting down once they’ve met their soulmate. I also added my own take on the timer thing. Hope y’all enjoy this one!



Sherlock straightened up from sealing a box labelled ‘Lab Equipment’ and cursed under his breath when he heard a knock on his front door. He glanced at his watch, letting out a soft annoyed groan at the sight of the timer on his left inner wrist. I haven’t even phoned Mycroft, and his impeccable and dramatic timing won’t allow his movers to arrive too early. It can’t be my landlord, and my parents are in Oklahoma. A client then. Sighing, he picked his way around the numerous boxes littering his sitting room. He dramatically swung the door open. “May I help you?”

The petite, auburn-haired woman standing before him paled. “I’m… Uh, I’m…” She hitched her white tote bag with green stripes higher over her shoulder, her hands fidgeting with the straps.

He rolled his eyes and heaved an impatient sigh. “This had better be at least an eight if you’re a client. I don’t have time for anything less than that.”

She knitted her eyebrows together and frowned. “Client? Wh-why would I be your client?”

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3

Now you see it, now you see it again Pt 14: A coat tale

Coats of the late 1920s tended to be simpler than the outfits worn underneath. They typically closed with just a single, large button or extravagant, feature tab and buckle, wrapped and fastened to one side. They had few decorations; trim was usually narrow side panels, sometimes with cording, self-fabric trim, or embroidery on the sides or back. Many had fur shawl collars. Belts were not required and were optional as an ornamental feature that usually did not go all the way around the coat. 

Phryne wears a black and white woven cheviot wool coat, with white panel inserts at the sides and back, as well as from elbow to cuff, accessorised with black and/or white. It makes appearances in both Series 1 and 2.

And what a tale this coat could tell.

In Raisins and Almonds a complex plot involves allegiances - adherence to causes and family relationships that are tested. Marriage is scrutinised from the perspective of those honouring the commitment despite physical and emotional distance.

Phryne is investigating the death of a young man, Saul Michaels, a supporter of the Zionist cause. She, with Simon Abrahams, visits Josi Stein, a fellow Zionist, at the Kadimah to learn the meaning of a hand-written classical Hebrew note on a page from a text, which might offer a clue to the mysterious death.  We see the coat, accessorised with black and white down to the shoes, including a rather extraordinary brooch of  yarn and miniature knitting needles:

Josi Stein has little interest in helping Phryne investigate his friend’s death and is more interested in keeping the document than providing a translation.

Phryne: Mr Stein, I’ve unearthed some evidence that may explain your friend’s death, but I need help to understand it. 

Josi: … Saul was a student of Kabbalah, religious philosophical teachings. It may be from one of his books. That is all I know. 

Phryne: And this handwritten annotation, do you know what that means? It looks like Old Hebrew. 

Josi: Perhaps I could translate, but I would need to refer to some texts. If I can study it… 

Phryne doesn’t fall for that ruse and takes herself to the dead man’s rooms above the shoe shop.  Whilst an apprentice to Chaim Abrahams the cobbler, the victim was also a student, so the room is part bedroom, part study, part chemistry lab.  The coat contrasts the bright yellow walls of the bed-sit as Phryne begins to see that there may be a link between the Hebrew text, the lab and the young man’s death.

But the discovery of something far more rudimentary in the room leads to a more immediate clue…

and a consequent confrontation with Miss Leigh, to this point the chief suspect in the case. 

Phryne: Were you having a dalliance with Saul? 

Miss Leigh: That is none of your business. 

Phryne: For goodness sake, woman, I’m trying to save you from the gallows! 

We see the bars of the cell shadowing the wall and across Phryne’s coat as Miss Leigh admits to being Saul’s lover, despite the fact that she knew he would return to his wife overseas once he was able.

Miss Leigh: Saul had more to lose than I. He had a wife in Poland. They married at 16, but when he left, she promised that she would wait for him until they could be together in the Holy Land.

And a seque  - to the coat, Phryne and our Jack as Miss Leigh’s circumstances, and Phryne’s urging of her innocence, lead ultimately to Jack’s own revelations. First, his knowledge of Science.

Jack: I doubt my Ancient Hebrew will impress you, but I studied enough science to recognise those symbols. This is the symbol for lead and the symbol for gold. He who could turn lead into gold could cure all disease and make men immortal, theoretically. But how does it help Miss Leigh? 

Phryne: She wouldn’t have killed him, Jack. She loved him. They were having an affair. 

Jack: He was married. 

Phryne: It happens. 

Jack: Well, there’s your motive. Miss Leigh wouldn’t be the first woman to kill in a jealous rage. 

Phryne: Miss Leigh doesn’t seem the type to rage. 

Then Phryne and the coat go off to find the translation of the annotation.

Phryne: I need your help with my investigations, Mr Abrahams. I understand that you can translate from Old Hebrew…

Mr B Abrahams:  This is mystical nonsense. 

Phryne: But it was important to Saul, and I suspect it has something to do with his death. 

Mr B Abrahams: Show me. ‘The invisible will become visible only through flames.' 

The man of honour is able to reveal the significance of the ‘mystical nonsense’, 

and whilst contemplating what to write to the distant widow, the most intimate of his reveals is divulged:

Jack: I went to war a newlywed. 

Phryne: But you came home. 

Jack: Not the man my wife married… 16 years ago. 

Phryne: War will do that to you. 

Jack: My wife’s been living with her sister for some time now. But a marriage is still a marriage, Miss Fisher. 

Phryne: Especially to a man of honour.

(I know, I know, she wasn’t actually wearing the coat in the last two pics but I just couldn’t stop myself it was required for context.)

And so to a favourite Ep for many of us: Dead Air.  

The coat appropriately reappears in an episode where Phryne’s outfits reflect the glamour of the radio stars of the 1920s.  Teemed again with the black French ‘cat-burglar’ beret, she also wears black gloves, and the coat supports a large cream cameo brooch to the lapel.

The radio station airs a popular series called The Polkinghorns with the main characters played by Jimmy and Hazel Creswick, her role winning Hazel an award.  

Playing parts is a motif throughout - Jack plays Archie, Phryne  plays a role or two, and Jimmy who plays Maurice Polkinghorn is really Harry. Uncovering who’s really who is critical to solving the murder.

It’s late in the ep that Phryne goes back to the radio station to flush out the killer by playing an old recording of a program associated with a past murder.  Sleazy Clarry continues to try his luck:

Phryne: Could you play this next? Special request. 

Clarry: Do I get one in return? 

Phryne: Save your breath, Clarry. Your charms are lost on me.

The recording of Twilight Melodies reveals Jimmy Creswick’s true identity, that of the former Harry Redpath, who is forced to show his hand (holding a gun).

Phryne: Louisa found you out, didn’t she, Harry? Remembered your voice from her time in Perth… You dragged her body outside. Clarence couldn’t hear any of it. Then you continued on to the awards night as if nothing had happened, and poor old Dodger saw it all. You realised he witnessed the murder, so you killed him too. 

Jimmy/Harry: You’re not moving until Hazel walks through that door. She defied me, and if I can’t have her, no-one will. I will kill her. And I’ll kill you too, Miss Fisher.

Phryne manages to clobber Jimmy/Harry and Jack arrives to make the arrest, his transformation from Archie back to DI complete.

And some teasing from Phryne:

Jack: Miss Fisher? 

Phryne: Hope you enjoyed the show, Jack. 

Jack: Constable, get him up. Harry Redpath, you’re under arrest for the murders of Guinevere Redpath, Louisa Singleton and John Lockhart. And the attempted murder of Hazel Creswick. 

Phryne: You took your time.

And so ends this coat’s tale, although the episode concludes with Phryne wearing a  stunningly sensuous evening gown that reflects the colours of the coat.  (And I need any excuse or feeble link to post that duet…).  It is chiffon and lace heavily sequinned and beaded with black and white pearls in intricate floral and fleurs de lys patterns. It swings and sways as she sashays into the room where Jack is at the piano.

Phryne and Jack celebrate a successful outcome (and an engagement) with a tinkle on the ivories while they plan their next move:

We’re all alone, no chaperone ♪ ♪ Can get our number ♪ ♪ The world’s in slumber ♪ ♪ Let’s misbehave

There’s something wild about you, child ♪ ♪ That’s so contagious ♪ ♪ Let’s be outrageous ♪ ♪ Let’s misbehave

You know my heart is true ♪ ♪ And you say you for me care ♪ ♪ Somebody’s sure to tell ♪ ♪ But what the heck do we care?

They say that bears have love affairs and even camels ♪ ♪ We’re merely mammals ♪ ♪ Let’s misbehave ♪ ♪ We’re merely mammals ♪ ♪ Let’s misbehave

There Is No Moving Forward Until White Women Own Their Shit

Before the marches took place, I read multiple articles written by Black women explaining why they would not be attending. Some of the reasons included the appropriation of the name of the march (March on Washington), the fact that white women would do little to nothing after the march, and also the idea that white women only included women of color because they needed bodies. And I thought to myself that these perspectives were worth considering. But after witnessing the outcome of the marches, I realized that they were completely valid.

It is estimated that around 4 million people marched across the country yesterday, a number I am sure not many people expected. Looking through the crowds, there were a lot of white women that attended, most holding signs that read “my p*ssy grabs back”. The white celebrity outcome was also very interesting. I saw Scarlett Johansson, Miley Cyrus, Amy Schmuer, and Chelsea Handler. All of them: peak white feminist. And white feminism=white supremacy.

Remember when Scarlett stole a role from an Asian woman? Remember when Amy equated Black men to predators? Remember when Miley Cyrus spoke over and tried to silence a Black woman?

Seeing these women at the marches and knowing that the crowds were filled with thousands of their clones angered me. Scarlett Johansson said in her speech that after the election results, she realized just how much work “we” have to do. And while that is a very privileged statement considering WOC and LGBT+ activist have been working since the beginning of time, she’s right. White women, you have some serious work to do.

Around 4 million people marched yesterday. But where were all of you during Ferguson? Or Baltimore? Or Baton Rouge? I can bet some of you were at home, wagging your fingers and shaking your heads in shame. Maybe you thought we were protesting the wrong way. But what about the thousands of peaceful protest that you would deem acceptable? Where were you then? What about Standing Rock? Or Flint, Michigan? Or is it you are only acting now that you are being personally attacked. Well, that is not enough.

53% of white female voters voted for tr*mp. Let me say that again. THE MAJORITY OF WHITE FEMALE VOTERS VOTED FOR TR*MP. What got us here in the first place was white supremacy. Something you benefit from. Understand that a majority of white women elevated their race privilege above their well being.

Nothing will come out of these marches if things stay the same. White women cannot continue to show up to these protest and ask WOC to do the hard labor. Practice intersectionality every single second. Your “feminism” is shit and it is false without it (talking to you TERFs). Confront your family members. Correct them. Do not sympathize with them or pander to them. Check your Amy Schumers and your Lena Dunhams and your Miley Cyrus’ and your Tammy Lorels. They are dangerous, and if you are really about it, you should be working to remove their faces from your brand of feminism. At these movements and protests, understand that it is the work of Black women and LGBT+ folk that have paved the way. Do not speak over them. Listen. Recognize and check your privilege. Do not show up and then go home and do nothing. And for all that is good in the world, stop policing our anger. It is not your place.

Understand that there will be no unity, there will be no “us” until you own your shit. Past and present. 

anonymous asked:

Modern college roommate AU! (Your writing is amazing)

Thank you so much!  I enjoyed writing this and I’m sorry if it got a bit feelsy, I like angst.  Thank you for the prompt, college/hs AUs give me life


~~~ (Implied child abuse/neglect)


Patroclus ended up taking the bus to the town where his school was, all of his possessions stuffed into an oversized duffle bag.  Everything else he either wasn’t allowed to take or was too replaceable and unimportant to spare the space for.  He had enough clothes to last the week before he did laundry, a handful of crumpled bill to buy what else he would need, and the hope that things would be better. University was supposed to be different, a new experience, and he only hoped it would be a good one.  His mother didn’t notice him leaving, his father was glad to be rid of him.

No one paid a second glance to him as he walked with his bag slung over his shoulder from the bus stop to the campus, they were all too busy getting settled and hugging their families goodbye.  He didn’t mind drifting through the background on the very edge of their attention, it was familiar.

Keep reading

Warning: long post….
but so good.

Close To Home: A Conversation About Beyoncé’s ‘Lemonade' 

REGINA BRADLEY   DREAM HAMPTON

A Beyoncé album release is now a communal experience. Who among us (and if you’re here reading this, you’re one of us) made it through this weekend without a conversation, typed or yelled, about her intent, her intonation, her read, her past, her bat, Serena, Tina, Etta, Warsan, Pipilotti, Zendaya? Whether you love her, hate her, or stay strong in your neutrality, our exchanges are kind of the point. This is what art makes us do. No doubt our opinions are in some places monetized and our vocalization of them surely buoys the price of Lemonade on up to $17.99. But what Beyoncé’s got us talking about now is what we women are really always talking about, under our breath, late night on the phone, after the kids are down, over coffee, at the bar, in tears, irrespective of anybody’s album drop: our worth. The video version of this album reflects the private lives of a certain group of women who share a set of memories and experiences; the arc of its narrative will be harrowingly close to home for all of us.

We asked Professor Regina Bradley and writer dream hampton to share their dialogue about the visual album with us, to show the many directions Lemonade is sending people, knowing the two of them don’t come to the art or the artist from the same place, knowing they require different things if they’re to feel represented, knowing that feeling is a major factor in what’s happening right now culturally, but it’s not the only thing. Uniting their perspectives here is our attempt to arm each other with information and knowledge and hard-earned truths. So that when we’re talking about Beyoncé, we’re really saying something. Regina and dream spoke on the phone Sunday afternoon. —Frannie Kelley

——-

Regina Bradley: I was like, wow. So much wow. That was my immediate reaction. And then I went on a Twitter rant. Because I saw a tweet that was like, “Well, this is so much that I don’t understand.” I heard everything from “creepy” to “It’s not for me.” So of course I put on, you know, my southern hat and I was like, “Some of the stuff in that video wasn’t meant for everybody!” It was a love note to southern black girls.

dream hampton: I’m not on Twitter and haven’t been since last August, but I went on there and I saw that the Internet was melting. I was looking for rare Prince video, because a lot of people are sharing amazing performance footage and I just couldn’t get enough this weekend. And I saw that Bey had released this album, which I of course knew she was releasing. I mean, we do have to say that part, like: I know these folks, or whatever.

I saw someone who was a writer for Hannibal, the very dark TV show about cannibalism, and I saw her tweet out that she didn’t think this album was for her, but she still was intrigued. And I thought, I bet when she was creating her scripts and her art she wasn’t telling NBC, “This is going to be a show for cannibals. That’s who’s gonna watch my show.” But in this moment, confronted with this many black girls on camera — and thank you Kahlil Joseph for honoring us in this way, to create this kind of visual altar to black girls, and black girl femmes — you know, in that moment, you can’t locate yourself? I wasn’t looking for myself inHannibal, a story about FBI agents or cannibals, because I have no desire to be either. But I loved what she was doing and I didn’t begin my read on that work with this feeling of rejection. And that was what was in her tweet. She’s a white woman and she felt rejected looking at this video.

Regina Bradley: I think what made folks uncomfortable was the fact that she was pulling from not only a blues tradition, but a southern black woman blues tradition. Shug Avery, Bessie Smith, Rosetta Tharpe and other blueswomen performers used their voices to sonically and lyrically expound upon their personal trauma and strife as a collective call-to-arms for black women. Blueswomen in the south traveled and wandered and did not censor their existence. They made people uncomfortable. I say Beyoncé made people uncomfortable because her performance in Lemonade wasn’t just a curation of the blueswoman aesthetic but an active reckoning with it as it manifested in southern spaces. Pair the blueswoman tradition with the traditional memory of the south as traumatic and backwards and you get a ripe space for unpacking the multiple layers of black women’s healing and existence that Beyoncé tackles in this project.

dream hampton: When I think of the mashup that’s happening here in terms of artists — and there are two collaborators that stand out, obviously, in this project, even though there were many — one of them is Warsan Shire, the poet who I have loved since I found her on Myspace in 2009. She’s a Somali Muslim raised in London and her writing is beautiful and these are her musings on romantic love.

And then you have Kahlil Joseph, who is interested in all kinds of black magic. He did a beautiful short film on Oklahoma rodeos. He did Shabazz Palace’s first video, “Belhaven Meridian,” a nod to the great filmmaker Charles Burnett. He also did a conjuring video for Flying Lotus, which cast Lotus as an Elegba/Eshu in a Cadillac who kind of comes to collect the beautiful Brooklyn dancer Storyboard Pete. Kahlil is absolutely a director who is influenced by Terrence Malick, and he really looks at film as a philosophical medium. And then you add Beyoncé.

Ann Powers wrote a great piece when Beyoncé did the 2013 Super Bowl. She was looking at Beyoncé and Destiny’s Child and that whole syncopated, southern marching band tradition and stepping contests. Beyoncé, even though she’s incredibly popular, probably the most popular artist we’ve had since Michael Jackson, is performing very straightforward R&B and always has, since Destiny’s Child. She has always performed very southern, black music since Destiny’s Child. I thought her first album reminded me of Prince in that it wandered. I’m talking about songs like “Speechless,” like “Naughty Girl,” like “Hip Hop Star,” like “Be with U.” I think that people were kind of happy when she came out with the album after that, B'day, because it returned to the Beyoncé that they were used to, with these big giant hits, from Destiny’s Child. But that first album, besides “Crazy In Love,” was to me deeply influenced by Prince. And then when she did B'day she returned to songs like “Upgrade U” and “Get Me Bodied” and “Ring the Alarm,” “Freakum Dress” — that album felt more like Destiny’s Child, Michael Jackson, I’m coming for you with hits. And Lemonade comes back to the kind of wandering and exploring she was doing on her debut. When you take away all of the videos, you get some very interesting mashups. The James Blake. The White Stripes.

Regina Bradley: I was listening to “Don’t Hurt Yourself,” the song that plays during the section of Lemonade called “Anger,” and I thought about Prince. The live instrumentation, the boisterousness of the music, I thought, this was for Prince. And I think she’s always in a space to do that. But I really enjoyed the fact that she’s making folks uncomfortable with her music right now and the imagery associated with it.

I guess on the one hand I feel like my ear has been tainted when listening to Beyoncé, because for me it’s mostly been what I’ve heard on the radio and it wasn’t until lately that I was like, let me actually dig into it and think about what these influences mean. But one thing that I, as a literary person, was looking at during the actual video album yesterday was so many references to black women writers, singers, and just this quotidian black woman experience that I was so in love with. Finally, you didn’t have to have these supreme cosmic influences just to have a conversation. I felt like it was an everyday conversation that I was having with her through these videos. Ok, well — maybe not the red light, going around town knocking people out with a bat named Hot Sauce. But for me, I saw the influences of Zora Neale Hurston.

dream hampton: I would say in that moment you’re also seeing Kahlil Joseph, who also has a real connection and interest in Zora. That’s what I mean that this is a mashup. And some of it is just musings — Warsan could be happy in a romantic relationship. Now her poems and Beyoncé’s lyrics are being taken literally and used to speculate about Jay and Beyoncé’s relationship. But in the end, these three artists, Warsan Shire, Kahlil Joseph and Beyoncé, are reflecting what they choose to, of their interests, back into their art.

Regina Bradley: The actual visuals probably teach a lot more than the lyrics. And I’m not trying to discount those at all. But we’re in a current visual cultural moment and we learn more through what we see than what we hear.

dream hampton: But let’s not act like lyrics have ever been deep. I mean, that’s what makes Prince an anomaly. Literally. These kind of love musings tend to never be deep. But that’s where Warsan Shire comes in and complicates it. And I say that loving music! As an academic yourself, as someone who writes, myself, we would probably overwrite songs. Because we would be overthinking them. Now Prince, of course, knew how to do thinking but simple love songs. He knew how to make really complicated lyrics make sense in a pop song — when you listen to a song like “Lady Cab Driver” and he says, “This is for the moon … so beautifully complex.” We don’t expect our pop love songs to be sonnets. You’re not going to hear that in an average song. By “average” I mean the very best. I mean The Beatles.

And that’s why it’s lovely that Kahlil brought in Warsan Shire and had her go even deeper on a literary level than a song. That’s what makes this project a masterpiece. Because all of them are playing their parts. Beyoncé is the consummate performer, she is black girl magic personified in this moment. Warsan is bringing that literary genius to it and, because Kahlil is deeply invested in a visual folklore, he’s directing all that into an ancient yet modern visual folklore around black people.

Regina Bradley: I’m still processing it. Even though I’ve watched it three times, there’s so much stuff I’m still missing. One of the things that stood out to me is when they were preparing dinner. The whole idea of soul food as a southern trope, and actually having a seat at the table that black women have been preparing for others, that was big for me.

dream hampton: That was a visual nod to Julie Dash’s Daughters Of The Dust.

Regina Bradley: Daughters Of The Dust and also Alice Walker’s In Search Of Our Mothers’ Gardens.

dream hampton: Yes! And Carrie Mae Weems’s Kitchen too! It’s gorgeous, this idea that we’re going to feed one another into love and healing. That food is healing, that our fellowship is healing. That all women’s spaces are sacred. And all of that comes through. I’ve said this before, but I don’t measure a woman’s strength by her ability to endure suffering. I think true strength is about reaching out when you need help. It is about forgiveness, which Bey has in there. But there’s also a call for accountability. Accountability in our most intimate relationships and accountability as it relates to the images of the mothers of these three victims of police violence.

Regina Bradley: That accountability is real, though. Like Beyoncé’s done so many times in the past, she’s putting her money where her mouth is. She doesn’t speak up in public spaces other than her music. I feel like her work begs the question, “What else do you want me to do?”

But I’m most struck by her use of antebellum imagery to situate her southernness. Southern black girls and women are at the front of Beyoncé’s vision. Not in the back. Not in her peripherals or tucked away under the heavy assumptions of southern black women and girls as hopeless. We are in the front. We are joyful. We are communal. Antebellum blackness as joyous and fruitful seems oxymoronic for black women. Slave women are the most silenced and traumatic representations of southern black women. It is a massive undertaking to sift through the forced silence regarding the physical, social and spiritual violence of slave women to locate the quiet of black women’s endurance. In Lemonade, the trauma of slavery itself does not propel the images of black women in undeniably southern spaces forward. Rather, the antebellum south serves as an entry point for Beyoncé to recognize the historical and cultural horrors of black womanhood while reclaiming the survival techniques passed down over time.

Towards the end of the film, a group of girls runs from a garden with fresh vegetables in their arms. Another shot shows a group of black women in antebellum dresses proceeding into a kitchen to chop vegetables, grind spices and prepare to literally and figuratively break bread. The agency of the antebellum south as the epitome of white southern pride gives way to the quiet dignity of black women as workers, healers and conjurers. The imagery is not new: Black women in head wraps, simple white dresses gathered in communal spaces like a cooking house and a southern plantation manor with black girls running through white columns off of a porch are referenced in multiple slave narratives like Linda Brent’s Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl.

Yet the work being done is for the women’s own benefit, culminating in a communal dinner underneath a massive oak tree with Spanish moss and performances by Beyoncé of her song “Freedom” and ballerina Michaela dePrince. The gathering women and girls are of multiple ages, smiling and conversing with one another. This scene juxtaposes with an empty candlelit table and a lone black girl — possibly a house slave — sitting at the table. The scene quickly cuts back to the same communal table in the dark under candlelight. The rapidness of the transition between the two scenes is like a blink. It suggests that the women at the table are the dream of the solitary black girl. What I most appreciate about Lemonade is its ability to pull the viewer through multiple lenses, historical periods and vantage points to complicate southern black women. It demonstrates healing as messy, non-linear and generational. Sometimes we deal with the same s*** that our mothers and grandmothers and foremothers experienced. The responsibility of remembering is not only a collective, but it’s a collective for multiple generations of black women.

dream hampton: The other thing that I really loved in the film is this way that she really loved up on her father and on Jay Z as a father. Kahlil reflects that back to us with all these everyday fathers in New Orleans loving on their baby girls.

Regina Bradley: I thought it was gorgeous. I cried a little bit because it made me think of my dad. Especially when he [Beyoncé’s father, in a clip of home video] was like, “What would you do if your grandparents were here?” And she was like, “We would have fun.” He said, “Tell them.” I’m like, yes! The ancestors are everywhere. We have to speak them into existence. We have to remember to keep them alive. He was instilling that in her.

dream hampton: And then the father that Jay is with Blue Ivy is something that she has to love the most about him. I know that, having been his friend for the past 20 years, this is my favorite phase of his life. This phase where he gets to be deeply connected with his daughter. Because for him, and he’s been public about this, this isn’t me snitching on him, at least he was public about this in the book we worked on together, Decoded, he healed his relationship with his father at the very last stage of his father’s life; his father was dying. And that made it possible for him to be in his first real love relationship, which is with his wife. And to see him be able to do more healing around that karmic energy, with his own daughter, is beautiful. Beyoncé must really love that about Jay.

Regina Bradley: And it’s an ongoing process, too. That idea of the vulnerability that’s associated with being a father. For me, one of the things I’ll always remember about my dad is we had a kind of rocky relationship in the beginning. I remember one time we were talking when I was 14 and I was like, “I don’t need you” and he cried. I had never seen a grown man cry before that. My dad was a big dude. He was like 6'5" and 300 pounds. And he was crying. He said, “But I need you though.” With Jay Z being such a public figure and actually letting us see him be vulnerable with his daughter, it wasn’t refreshing, but more like like, “I’m also human too.” It added levels of humanity for him that we don’t often reserve for superstars.

dream hampton: And I think that’s something that we’re guilty of, which is stripping celebrities of their humanity. The way that we talk about them. Grown people who may or may not have given birth, which is a big deal, openly speculating about whether she had her own child. This kind of viciousness. I remember Jay saying early on, when he first started dating her, there are only two headlines to write about a celebrity couple: They’re together and they’re divorced. And that’s all anyone’s interested in.

We really do say the worst things to our lovers. And we really do treat our lovers the very worst and the very best. That’s part of what intimacy is about, being so up in somebody’s stuff that they can’t avoid all the parts of you. But I do love that Beyoncé, unlike blueswomen before her, rejects the idea of sacrificial love as the wife’s duty in a cis-het relationship. In this suite, she demands accountability before we get forgiveness. She’s also being fully present in her rage, and fully understanding of what it is she deserves.

Some classic standards are hard for me to listen to: songs that were recorded by some of my favorite black women, Billie Holiday and Dinah Washington, but weren’t always written by them. Often they were written by white men and they’re sacrificial songs, they are not about being in your power at all times. Beyoncé brings us this power. She’s not the first to bring us this — '70s rock star Betty Davis, Miles Davis’ ex-wife, brought us this, in the “Anti Love Song,” for instance. We’ve seen it before, we’ve absolutely seen it in hip-hop. But it’s so good for Beyoncé to bring that archetype back — “I know what I deserve, I know that god lives in me, I am a divine being and that I deserve all the respect and all the care.” And that’s what the accountability piece is, that you will care for me in the way I deserve to be cared for.

Regina Bradley: And I’m starting to care for myself.

dream hampton: Or that I’ve always cared for myself! We don’t always have to have the hero’s journey, where people have to hit rock bottom and come back up. That’s not our tradition: a single person on a single journey.

Regina Bradley: Multiple journeys.

dream hampton: And not just multi-journey, but your crew, with your woes.

Regina Bradley: You need a squad. Every woman needs a squad.

dream hampton: And in that sense, Kahlil turns away from the hero’s journey and populates this video, even though it’s clearly about Beyoncé, with all of these other black women in different phases of their life. And I think that that’s important.

Regina Bradley: Yes. Because squad love is the best love.

src

2

This is the video in question.

Makeup blogger and industry professional(?) showmemakeup doesn’t see the act of painting a white woman black as “blackface,” and therefore argues it’s a-ok, it’s just art.

This is a perpetual problem not only in the beauty and fashion world (with constant skin-lightening photoshop techniques and over-represenation of white women with barely any black models being used), but also in the online beauty and blogging community.  We’re always being told to contour the sides of our noses to make them appear “slimmer” (and therefore more European and/or white) because, god forbid, wide noses are undesirable (the implication of such frequently repeated suggestions).  We’re told to use a foundation a few shades lighter, and to then add a few shadows, because that’s “prettier” or “just the way you contour.”  Granted maybe some people WANT to do that, but putting forth these rules as “the right way to contour” instead of just “ONE way to contour” further reinforces white, European beauty standards.

The above screenshots are incredibly disappointing as it display the typical ignorance of a fellow white person when confronted with our racism:

1) Deny the racist act itself (“No it’s not”)

- Shows an ignorance of both the history of blackface and how it’s being manifested now.  Doesn’t acknowledge that the literal act of painting a white person black is a direct reference to the racist act, and therefore further perpetuates it as acceptable.  Basically, just outright denial without any reasoning attached (except for the attempts in 2 and 3 below).

2) Make a false parallel (“If I took a Black Woman & coloured her White..”)

- An attempt at explaining why what she did isn’t blackface/racist.  It’s a false parallel because blackface as an act that has a long history and has been done repeatedly - “whiteface” has not.  Blackface is done to mock and degradingly imitate black people, which adds to our society’s racist perception of them and the violent way we treat black bodies (as if solely for our entertainment) - again, “whiteface” has rarely been done, and on the few occasions it has been performed, it has not had the wide-scale systemic impact on white people that blackface has had on black people.

- Therefore, the act of painting a black woman white is literally not the same as the act of painting a white woman black because of the extremely important context of how each group is treated.  Black people are still oppressed, marginalized, erased, and treated poorly, while white people still occupy the majority of powerful political positions, police forces and law enforcement positions, and the upper-class/CEOs/rich population.  Mocking a white person through whiteface has no impact on us as a group or as a whole, and the average person will still assume neutral or positive facts about us, while mocking a black person with blackface further reinforces the countless negative stereotypes about black people.

- Yes, this person is not attempting to mock black people with this blackface example, but the act references the above patterns, and despite the intent being ‘innocent,’ the impact is not.  The act also makes it convenient to exclude black models since apparently it’s so easy to take already successful white models and turn them black.  This further oppresses black individuals by denying them any chances of success in an industry that already tells them they’re ugly.

3) Attempt to make an excuse for the racist act (“It’s Art…”)

- This part is even more absurd.  If it’s not racist, why is she trying to justify it with this last part?  Why throw this in if she is so confident she’s doing nothing wrong?  The only times I see someone say “it’s art” in reaction to another’s comment is when a) it’s so bizarre no one gets it, or b) it’s extremely offensive.  This isn’t some bizarre contemporary piece that no one “gets,” this is clearly blackface.  "It’s art" excuses nothing.  If I stabbed a disabled person to death and captured it on camera, I would not be able to excuse myself with “it’s art.”  People can easily recognize the example I just gave is horrific and offensive, and would know that my excuse wouldn’t work.  The same is true for this case.

I am just continuously disappointed with how un-feminist the beauty industry is in 2014.  I’m always seeing faux lipstick-feminism 'hoorays!’ and people talking about how beautiful blackness is, and then there’s really nothing actually changing.  I want to see diverse runways, and Vogue covers that feature COLOR photography of beautiful WoC, especially black women.  I want to see contouring techniques that VARy or that CELEBRATE WIDE NOSES!  I want to see countless articles on HAIR, hair that is 4c and super curly and kick-ass fros.

I want to see BLACK WOMEN being hired to represent black women.

I want to see people finally fucking understand that the literal act of painting a white person black IS blackface, and is NOT ACCEPTABLE.

*Addendum: It’s also hard to not notice how brightly the lips are painted for the racist image above.  That BRIGHT RED thicker lip is a DIRECT reference to blackface tradition.  Barf.

Princess - DP

Drabble request: Princess

.

Everyone had deemed it the fairest and safest way to solve the ghost problem.  Sam had even agreed… right up until her name was drawn from the box to be the sacrificial lamb.  Then she had disagreed – violently.  It took four cop cars, an ambulance, and a good portion of the Amity Park bomb squad to get her here and make her stay here.

She stood in font of the Portal, stiff and unresponsive to anything anyone had to say.  Her parents were sobbing, and Sam didn’t think it was just for the camera.  The Fentons looked nervous and horrified.  The lone cameraman stood there, filming what was about to happen, but looked like he wanted to be anywhere else.  No doubt the image would be shaky and blurry.

At least the dress was black.  She picked at the soft fabric.  It had been her demand – black, no lace, and not overly long.  She might have to be forcibly married off to some sort of prince in the Ghost Zone to stop a war, but at least she wasn’t going to go there wearing a long white dress and flowers.

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I'm a white ally:  What can I do?

This is what you can do.

“A Trip To The Grocery Store” is a short clip from Cracking the Codes by World Trust TV.  The movie is four years old, but thanks to Upworthy, the clip is making the rounds again, and since I only watched it once the first time around and then lost it, I wanted to post it here so I could refer back to it whenever a white person says that I/we talk too much about racism and racism would go away if I/we would stop harping on it all the time.

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I’d promised not to do spoilers, but I’m taking a break from that promise to talk about the main villain of Ghostbusters and how anyone saying he’s a bad character is quite simply wrong. Also much talk about Patty Tolan because I see posts about Gilbert’s and Yates’s involvement, but not hers. So, even if I keep things as vague as possible, spoiler warning. (I have tagged this “Ghostbusters spoilers” if you want to quickly blacklist.)




Rowan North is a white man. He is unhappy about life. He considers himself worth more than he gets from the people around him and has experienced bullying. All this has brought him to regard himself with a certain grandeur of the misunderstood genius and if society won’t give him its acknowledgement and praise, then he will destroy society. In the most bombastic way possible literally with his own personal army.

I’m seeing reviews that act like North is not well-motivated. All of the above is all you need to know about the character to understand his motivation and all of it is in the movie, though I concede that one needs contextual understanding to put the pieces together. But every one of us should have that contextual understanding. Are there people who by any chance don’t engage with the news? “Rowan North” is the guy who every half a year or so shoots up a concert, a movie theater, a school, a center, and wherever it is folks gather. Or is this about engaging with the news too much? And what is complained about is the emptiness detected when suddenly the story doesn’t talk about “Rowan North”’s childhood and hobbies.

Like, the concert case? Where North walks casually through the crowd, being greeted and greeting people in return when he’s actually there to kill as many as are going to be caught up in his Day of Reckoning scheme? Not subtle at all. It frightens me there are people who don’t pick up on this. Or demand more of him.

I will keep saying as long as is necessary that the quality of the 2016 movie is to be placed in context of the 80s movies. And if we do that? Gozer is a primordial entity worshipped by the population of the Mediterreanean-Middle East in The Old Days, though somehow is kinda white. Not that the situation would improve with a racially accurate actor, but I’m tired of this reduction of culture to props. It’s so very Lovecraftian (let me tell you about how much I hate that names like “Dagon” and “Tiamat” sooner associate with horror than a beautiful piece of history). Its demigod servants are Zuul and Clortho. Gozer’s storyline is that they’re an ancient evil that wants to kill us all because that’s what ancient evils do. For Gozer to get access to our world, their demigod servants first have to possess two humans, a “gatekeeper” and a “keymaster”, for what is heavily implied to be a ritual involving sex. Because why the heck not. And without consent of the hosts whatsoever.

Vigo the Carpathian is barely better. The Mediterreanean-Middle East is exchanged for neighborino East Europe. “The Carpathian” still sounds nicely “other”. His goal is a reign of terror, somewhat for revenge but mostly because that’s just how he is. He too goes the “minion, get me access to this realm”-route by abducting a baby for body hijacking.

How the bleeping hexagon can you consider either of these two well-written but Rowan North “unfinished” (the people saying this tend to praise the 1984 movie)? North’s the better villain, whether you like the fact he’s a white American man from the present or not. I assume the problem is that the racist & xenophobic fantasy of the inhumane powerful other in the end soundly defeated by the casual-but-secretly-awesome self not only is not applied, but that this round the villain is that casual-but-secretly-awesome self. And this villain could be the person standing next to you and you’re the neighbor who’ll one day be interviewed whether you saw it coming (spoiler: you didn’t), but just as easily it is the person within you. That’s not a story as easy to accept as the dangerous yet inferior foreigner.

There’s probably also something to be said about a reversal of gender and gender performance considering Gozer’s gender-ambiguity and Vigo’s hyper masculinity (I recall him being called butch?) compared to Rowan’s “just a guy” as well as the 1984 gender (performance) dynamics of the heroes vs the 2016 ones, but I’m not the one for that task.

And this is where I’m bringing in Tolan. Admittedly, there’s a note of sympathy to have for North in the sense that you end up asking “Did this have to happen?”. The receptionist and the waitresses paint a lonely picture of rejection, but the concert-goers demolish that picture. And so does Tolan. Because Tolan is like North, “stuck” in an unappreciated job and smart enough to know that maybe they don’t belong there, even if there’s no feasible way onwards. But where North goes for the apocalypse, Tolan doesn’t falter to smile to every patron even if they ignore her. That’s why North talked to her. He sympathizes with her because she’s like him, but she disgusts him because she’s not bitter or vengeful. He literally promises her she’ll be among the last of his victims, getting extra time, but being worthy of death all the same.

Patty Tolan is a black woman. I can’t name a case in which a black woman is the aggressor, but I can name plenty in which they are the victim. Dear Tolan remains polite, not recognizing the danger. She does keep an eye on him for his odd behavior and sees him go on the tracks. Presuming a suicide attempt (I think? If so, foreshadowing), she goes after him herself and that way comes into contact with the paranormal. She survives and keeps control of the situation by getting herself help from experts, thereby being a parallel to Dana Barrett. But where Barrett got the sexualized damsel-in-distress treatment, Tolan takes her steps self-consciously to always be with the situation. She doesn’t send the ghostbusters to the ghost, she takes them to it, and after that joins them on her own initiative and on her own conditions. It is her unique encounter with North that lets her later identify him and get her team to his lair timely. The confrontation is one of multiple stages and one has the ghostbusters offer him sympathy and a way out, which of course he doesn’t take because that’s not what he’s been fantasizing about. And if you’ve seen the movie, you know the rest of the story.

I am not commenting on the matter of Patty having or lacking a degree, because an education would not make it impossible for her to be a subway worker, but Patty being an everyman is of relevance to the story. Because only by being in that unassuming role, she was someone North thought he could vent his arrogance on, which ended up being the biggest mistake in his entire scheme. It bought the ghostbusters time, brought them knowledge, and got them Patty Tolan on their team. If we look at Zeddemore’s role as an everyman in the 1984 movie, then we see someone who does not contribute anything unique in that form. All the role does is create more room for Venkman and, by making Zeddemore join for money and explicitly not genuine commitment, for part of the movie he has this potential to become the traitor hanging over him. This is played up at the end where his “arc” is resolved by him getting enthusiastic about the job. But if anyone is the traitor in the 2016 movie, it is Gilbert, who, despite being the narrative lead, also is opportunistic and selfish until she makes the jump and the one contributing nothing unique. Yates is the core that the others flocked to. Holtzmann is the gadgeteer. And Patty is the perspective. Maybe my memory is failing here, but I can’t think of a thing Gilbert adds that is inherent to her. This doesn’t make Gilbert a bad character, but her personal journey is far more significant to her presence than her team contributions. And from there, notwithstanding that the movie follows Gilbert, notwithstanding what each member of the team had to overcome and accomplished, but Patty Tolan is the hero of the movie. Because she was promised to die and not only she didn’t, but no one else died either thanks to her.

Whether Tolan ultimately is a good character and treated fairly by the narrative is a discussion not for me and larger than the observation I wanted to write down. Feel free to comment. Although I would like to take the moment, speaking as a chemist, to ask people to stop emphasizing that Patty is the only one who isn’t a scientist. Because she’s an historian and I fail to see how someone with my skills would be more “admirable” than someone with Patty’s skills. It’s right to point out how Patty’s differences combined with her being the only non-white ghostbuster are othering, but urgently please put an end to “Scientist > Historian”. As for Rowan North, in short, he’s an excellent villain with clear motivations and I worry about those who act like he isn’t. On an individual level and a societal level.

Elsanna One shot - The London Underground

Rating: T - Perfectly safe but I’ll stick a T rating on just in case.
Words: 2734
I hope you enjoy!


Oneshot – The London Underground:

Each morning in the city of London there are thousands of businessmen and women rushing around the busy streets. Each are in their own little worlds, conscious of the meeting they’re late for, the pile of work that awaits them on their desks, thinking how they can avoid their bosses long enough to finish off a report that’s due. Yes, step into the streets of London any morning and look around. Most likely you’ll be knocked to the floor as you stop against the flow of those busy people, but you will quickly notice two things about the surge of madly rushing workers. One, they have no regard for people have fallen over, and two, each of them is lost in their own routine.

Elsa Sonticus was one of those who had such a routine. Each morning she would emerge from her studio apartment, whip around to the the local Costa coffee shop to grab an Americano with two sugars and soy milk, pick up a buttery croissant from the Tesco next door, walk down two small side streets while pulling out her Oystar card and Kindle, and finally walk down the steps of Holland Park tube station to catch the 8:20 train. Elsa would do this every single day almost at the exact same second while passing the same people and observing the same advertisements boards. The only thing that changed in Elsa’s daily routine were the posters inside those advertisement boards.

Now if there was one part of the morning journey Elsa enjoyed, it was her trips on the 8:20 train. She had her own spot that she had managed to fend off from the other passengers over the years. It was at the left end of the middle carriage, right by an open window that blew in a gentle breeze that took away the unbearable heat of the underground. The usual passengers of the middle carriage knew this was the fierce looking business woman’s spot and no one dared approach her, coffee drinking, croissant eating, Kindle reading domain. They had seen young, over-confident businessmen stride up to her and mutter some cheesy chat up line about her slender figure or neat bun of white-gold hair. Each of these poor fools along with any other who disturbed Elsa during her morning journey all met the same fate. She would throw them an icy cold death stare that could turn the burliest soldiers into blubbering children. Elsa never needed to open her mouth or lower her Kindle, the stare would soon send the cause of the disruption to the other side of the train.

You can imagine her surprise then when one Monday morning Elsa’s train pulled up with a girl with fiery auburn hair wearing a smart business jacket, white shirt, and sleek black pencil skirt was already stood in her place, bobbing her head along to the no doubt jumpy pop tune playing through her white earphones. Elsa got onto the train looking paler than usual. Some of the passengers had noticed and were whispering to one another while they stared at this poor young redhead. Elsa was already in full death stare mode when the young woman finally looked up and caught Elsa’s eye. She looked down the train to some of the few staring passengers, then back at Elsa and gave a cute, oblivious smile. The smile was horribly infectious. Elsa could hardly maintain her death stare as she pursed her lips and bit on the side of her cheek to stop herself smiling back. The young woman carried on bobbing away to her songs, quite unaware of Elsa’s fury over losing her place on the train. Eventually the train pulled up at Elsa’s stop and she had to get off without gaining so much as an inch of her spot back.

Elsa brooded with silent anger for the rest of the day.

How dare she waltz onto my train and take my spot without a single thought, Elsa thought while she focused all of her fury into slamming down on the stapler to staple a series of important documents.

Now it might seem a little extreme, being so upset about a place to stand on a train, but Anna Renidens had quite innocently broken a silent rule of the London morning worker march. Never ever disrupt a person’s routine.

Elsa was quite sure that this smiling girl had no idea of important things such as a morning routine. She had contented herself then that this girl was subject to randomness and would quite happily be in a different carriage in another person’s spot the next day. Oh how wrong she had been.

The next morning Elsa’s face dropped when the 8:20 train pulled up at her stop and there stood that very same girl bobbing along to another tune. Elsa was distraught. How could this be? This was her spot and it had been for years now. How could this strangely energetic girl usurp her rightful spot in a day?

Elsa thudded onto the train with a face like thunder. Anna once again, broke her concentration away  from the fast paced beat of the song, looked up at Elsa and gave her the warmest look she could manage at 8:20 in the morning. Anna was quite confused why this tall, pretty business woman kept staring at her and giving her funny looks. Anna had only been in the city a month so she guessed that the early mornings did strange things to people here. Hell, the mornings were a struggle for Anna too. But the moment she stepped on the train and stood in this oddly cool spot, she felt wide awake and was gently dancing away to herself in seconds. She thought then that this blonde woman needed the same sort of pleasantness in her mornings so Anna decided to give her a cheery smile.

The days passed by and still Anna stood in Elsa’s spot every working morning without fail. Elsa was half tempted to get on the train on the weekend just so she could remember what it was like to stand there. Elsa’s fury grew stronger and stronger and still Anna stood there without any knowledge of the unspoken crime she had committed. One morning when the shop assistant at Tesco informed Elsa that her buttery croissant wasn’t going to be in stock today she had had enough. She flew down the corridors and escalators of the underground and stood waiting for the 8:20 train like a cat waiting for a mouse to come out of a hole in the wall. The train pulled up and sure enough, there stood Anna Renidens hungrily eating a rather large sandwich baguette. Elsa crossed to her in the blink of an eye. The passengers of the train looked on with bated breath, this was the confrontation they’d been expecting to see for just over a week now. Elsa was waiting for Anna to notice her standing a little too close. She was going over the clear set of arguments she had thought out on the way down when she actually looked at this girl for the first time. She had a light sprinkling of freckles across her cheeks, with pinkish-red lips and bright turquoise eyes. She was beautiful. Elsa was too lost in her thoughts to even realise that Anna had pulled out one ear phone and was asking her if she was okay.

“Hey, excuse me, are you feeling okay?” repeated Anna.

Elsa finally snapped out of her trance enough to make some attempt at speech, “Uh… um… well…”

Elsa couldn’t quite meet those brilliant eyes so she kept looking at Anna’s forehead instead so that this girl knew she was being addressed, to an extent.

“Oh my God,” said Anna as her eyes went wide with shock, “I have chocolate on my forehead don’t I? Oh my, I’m so sorry. Here I am dancing away to myself when in fact I’m being a disgrace to the entirety of London!” Anna began scrubbing at the middle of her forehead asking where the stain was.

This wasn’t how Elsa planned things to go. She hadn’t done anything to get her spot back. All she had managed to do was get this girl to draw attention to them both. Every eye of the passengers was on them now.

“No, no it isn’t that. There’s nothing on your forehead,” said Elsa impatiently.

“Oh. Phew! You have no idea how many times my mother used to warn me about that. She claimed that I once strode about for an entire day with half a chocolate bar melted on my head when I was a kid.”

Elsa blinked. She had no idea what was going on any more. She just wanted her place back, no matter how adorable this girl was being. “Listen… here’s the thing,” said Elsa now gone shy, “I… uh.. you see… this is where um-”

Anna looked on with that same cheery smile as Elsa stammered along.

“Your stood in my spot,” Elsa said after several attempts.

At first Anna laughed rather loudly. She had no idea this blonde woman was funny too. After Anna wiped a small tear from the corner of her eye she soon realised this was no joke. Elsa stood there with a stern expression set on her face, arms crossed firmly.

“Oh… You were serious?”

“Serious? Of course I am,” Elsa hissed, “I’ve stood in that same spot for the past two years. Every morning I get my coffee and croissant and read a book while standing in that very place. My spot.” Elsa’s face had slowly turned deeper shades of angry red, or pink in her case since her skin was so pale.

As for Anna, well this made no sense to her whatsoever. How could someone that pretty come onto a train and be so rude! Anna wasn’t giving this spot up now. “What makes it your spot?” she said, deciding to poke the beast of fury that was this blonde woman.

“Weren’t you listening? I’ve stood here for the past two years! This is my routine and no one interrupts. Especially by taking my spot.”

“Like hell this is your spot. I don’t see your name on it!” Anna retorted like that same small child who once had half a chocolate bar melted on her head, “Plus I was just starting to get real comfortable here. I think I might bring a fold up chair with me so I can stretch my legs out too.”

Elsa was beginning to defy her natural skin tone and was quickly reaching the deepest, darkest  reds. But before she could open her mouth and let loose on this infuriating girl, Elsa’s stop pulled up. Anna shot her a sly look of victory as Elsa stepped off and the train pulled away. Anna even had the nerve to give her a little wave.

It could only be expected then when the 8:20 train pulled up the next day with Anna grinning like the Cheshire cat, her hands on her hips, standing defiantly in Elsa’s spot. There would be no holding back today Elsa decided. As soon as the doors opened the arguing began. Elsa would lecture Anna over the importance of maintaining simple order so that everyone could have an organised and pleasant morning. Anna would disagree on every point she could, saying that Elsa was selfish, caring only about her own comfort.

“Of course people are selfish!” Elsa would cry, “This is London for heaven’s sake!”

And so this soon became the routine of Elsa, Anna and the passengers of the 8:20 train on the Central line. The train would pull up at Holland Park station, Elsa would get on, the passengers would moan and groan, and the two young businesswomen would begin arguing. Now people stayed away from the spot not because of an icy death stare, but because they didn’t want to get caught up in the unrelenting debate. Once a guard tried to break them up but Elsa and Anna turned their anger on the poor guard instead, both arguing against him until he backed out of the middle carriage and dared not come back in. Their arguments weren’t even about Elsa’s, or everyone’s as Anna insisted, spot. They would argue about books, movies, sushi, even the latest posters in the advertisements boards. Anna had the cheek one day to wait till the train arrived at Holland Park before pulling out a fold-up camping chair out of a rucksack and sat in it before the doors opened. Anna soon regretted this decision when the train started moving again and the chair slid out from underneath her. Elsa managed to catch her before she fell to the ground only to begin arguing with her about how much she liked to wind people up.

This all carried on for another few months until Elsa was off ill with the flu one day. Anna realised on that oddly quiet and lonely day that she actually enjoyed arguing with Elsa in the morning. She was wide awake every morning now, always set for her daily dose of Elsa confrontation. Through their countless arguments she got to know Elsa quite well, she knew what she liked, she certainly knew what she disliked, she knew how Elsa would purse her lips and bite her cheek when she didn’t want to burst out laughing or smile, she knew the way Elsa would dress on the certain days of the week. All of this was only the start of her Elsapedia. Anna wondered how on earth that in the few months of living in London, the person she knew the most about and liked the most was someone she argued with daily. Before her thoughts got carried away with themselves, Anna noticed that the passengers were enjoying the peace a little too much. She was half tempted to start arguing with the lot of them just to add some noise to that unfamiliar quiet.

The next day the 8:20 train pulled up to the platform and Elsa, despite being slightly fluey still, was ready to make up for the day of arguing she missed. She was shocked then when the doors opened to reveal her spot empty with not a flicker of auburn hair in sight. She tentatively stepped onto the train. Surely this is some kind of trick? She thought. She knew it had to be a trick. Any minute now Anna would probably run down the train and slide into the spot. Elsa looked down the train and saw Anna stood on the other side alone and beaming at her. Elsa quite forgot about the spot now. This simply wouldn’t do. How dare Anna move to the other side when there was a debate to be had! The passengers closest to the hotly contested spot sighed with relief as for the first time in months, they would be away from the ceaseless argument that began at 8:20 everyday. The passengers near Anna, however, looked on with horror as the tall, blonde businesswoman strode purposefully towards them.

“I demand to know the reason behind your sudden immigration to this side of the train! Do you care nothing for routine?” said Elsa gripping onto a nearby pole to steady herself.

Anna meanwhile continued to beam at Elsa as she enjoyed her attempts to start an argument about anything at all. Curiously, Elsa became redder with anger because Anna simply wouldn’t argue back, she only smiled. Elsa, to her own frustration, found herself admiring Anna’s features all over again.

“This is all a big trick isn’t it? To get me away from my spot! Well let me tell you, Anna Renidens-!”

“Would you be interested in going out for something to eat this evening?” said Anna looking down at the floor, occasionally casting shy glances back up at Elsa.

Elsa was taken aback. That was the last thing she expected Anna to say. She soon found herself stuttering as she had once done when she first spoke to Anna. This was also the first time Anna had said something that Elsa couldn’t or didn’t want to argue with.

“Wow, um- well, I mean… I’d love to.”

Both girls went pink to their ears.

“Finally!” Shouted a blonde boy further down the carriage.

On racism and misogyny within Muslim spaces

When we as Muslims often try to open up conversations about racism and sexism within the Ummah, members of the privileged groups in question (i.e. men in conversations about sexism; and Arab/South-East Asian/White Muslims in conversations about racism, typically anti-blackness) often try to shut down the much-needed discussion or derail by saying things such as “But Islam already provides women equal rights” or “The first man who did the call to prayer was Bilal (rA) who was a black man.” I understand that we have become highly sensitive to criticism of Islam as an Ummah, especially regarding modern day Islamophobia. However, there are issues that need to be talked about.

This is not productive or helpful, instead it’s just very counter-productive. How are we going to counter racism or misogyny if conversations about them are constantly derailed and shut down? These are important conversations we should be having every day. We should be reassessing our own privilege and checking ourselves as to how we treat our own Muslim siblings as well. 

Yes, Islam does provide women with rights! That doesn’t automatically mean that those rights will be enforced (as they should be). Rights don’t enforce themselves. We need to enforce them, whether it’s through our own behaviour or legislation. More importantly, we need to protect women and we need to hide perpetrators of violence from hiding behind twisted interpretations of religious texts.

Secondly, I know we have to tread carefully as to avoid having our narratives co-opted by Islamophobes. However, if a Muslim woman criticises certain components of Islam and/or an Islamic society, it is her right to do so. Silencing tactics are again counterproductive to solving the issue at hand. Legitimate areas of critique do exist, and it is necessary that they do. We need to deconstruct misogyny within Muslim spaces, so we can dismantle patriarchy within Muslim spaces. 

Another point to be made is that the bodies of Muslim women are theirs, and theirs only. This means that men have no right to pass judgement. It is a woman’s choice whether she wears hijab or not. It doesn’t make her more or less religious. Even if a woman wears hijab, she does not wear it for men, but for God as Allah has commanded it. The same thing applies to clothing. How much skin someone shows shouldn’t be any of your concern either. The principle of “lower your gaze” applies to men, as does the principle of modesty. That being said, women are not fitnah in and of themselves. 

Onto the matter of race. Do not be surprised when a black Muslim person says they are black before they are Muslim. The overwhelming rubbish behind “We are all one Ummah” as a silencing tactic on criticisms of racism is unacceptable.  Identities regardless of what they are and faith are often linked, so diminishing these identities in order to place a focus on a person’s Muslim identity is more counter productive than anything. 

Yes, there is a hadith by the prophet Muhammad (SAW) saying ‘an Arab is not superior to a non-Arab’, but this does not mean that racism amongst Muslims does not exist. You cannot expect to dismiss call outs on anti-blackness or other forms of racism by saying “Islam and Muslims are colour-blind.” 

Don’t forget that there are “Islamic” countries out there which benefit and profit off the marginalisation and cheap labour of people they deem “ethnically inferior,” such as Saudia Arabia and the UAE do. These are mostly south east Asian migrant workers, however as history shows, other Arab countries have a history of participation in slavery of black people.  This is proof that anti-blackness prevails for decades and centuries. 

Also because white privilege is global, this means anti-blackness is global. Anti-blackness exists in a lot of Arab and Muslim societies, and regardless where you go in the entire world, it still exists. Islam doesn’t negate that fact.

Also if we expect to dismantle racism within our spaces, we should change our language. Stop using racist slurs in every language such as “abd”/”abeed” (slave/slaves). They are your siblings, therefore are equal to you. That being said, we need to actively confront and challenge any racism, particularly anti-blackness, within our ethnic communities. Racism is often connected to cultural ideas of race, so this is why it is important to do so. 

Muslim spaces should be safe and inclusive for everyone. That goes without saying.

(As an Arab, I speak from a fairly privileged position on race, please correct me if I have crossed the line anywhere and if anything I have said is wrong.)

anonymous asked:

What do you think that's wrong with the 100? I personally agree with you but what do you think that's wrong or that they should have done differently?

Short answer? Everything. They should have done everything differently.

Long Answer;

  • Not killed Wells Jaha. The show makes a whole lot more sense if he lives, because Finn is not the “moral center” of anything. But Wells, oh poor sweet Wells. He took the blame for Jake Griffin’s death so Clarke wouldn’t hate his mother. He got himself arrested so he could take a one way trip to his death to be there for Clarke (who hated him at the time). He was the one who went out and buried those two kids who died following Finn’s lead in the drop ship (meanwhile Finn “moral center” Collins was off flirting with Clarke, even though at this point he still had a hope of seeing Raven again). Wells who forgave Clarke in a heartbeat, Wells the good friend who talked so much sense but no one listened to him because of his father.
  • With Wells alive you have an actual moral center, a voice of reason who isn’t a hypocrite like Finn. It doesn’t actually matter that everyone hates Wells, because the 100 hated Clarke at the start too, but they came around because Clarke proved herself, as Wells should have too. If they hadn’t killed him.
  • I don’t like the fact that the fandom basically ignores the fact that Charlotte was a killer. Yeah she was young, but she’s old enough to know what right and wrong are. Fandom please stop naming Bellarke’s first child after her, it’s gross. Clarke would never do that, Wells was her only friend on the ark.
  • Jasper should have died when he was meant to die. He’s an utterly useless and totally offensive character. he refers to a girl as “low hanging fruit”, then in season 2 he screws Clarke over for a girl and is literally the last person to stop drinking the Mount Weather Kool Aid but somehow he becomes the “brains of the operation”, why? Because he’s the white boy? Such bullshit, should have been him and not Harper who got tortured. That would have been some fitting narrative punishment for being such a sexist dick (also devon bostick is a sexist dick, can’t ignore that)
  • Pretty much get rid of Jasper, give all his screen time to Monty.
  • Murphy. Should have stayed gone or stayed evil. Absolutely should never have gotten a redemption arc. I know everyone thinks Richard Harmon is wonderful, but Murphy isn’t. He’s a cold blooded killer who is responsible for Raven’s paralysis. And he’s walking around with a freaking gun smarting off. I dunno if they’re keeping him on because he’s pretty or funny or white, but none of those are reasons to just ignore murder.
  • Literally the only reason Nathan Miller has a first name and half a plotline this season is because the fans loved him so much. Otherwise he’d have stayed in the background like pretty much all the other poc’s. So yay for Nathan Miller but he should have had a bigger role from the start, take screentime from Murphy and give it to him. He’s far more interesting.
  • They need to stop physically abusing Lincoln.
  • There needs to be some consistency in the Ark’s concept of justice. Or failing that, they need to acknowledge how fucked up it is and stop acting like the mostly white ark adults are the good guys. They’re fucking evil, okay? They used to execute people for stealing food.
  • Like, there’s a whole colonialism narrative going on here but it’s being told all wrong. You have the ark people come to earth, massacring grounders, refusing to leave grounder territory that they have no claim to, and somehow the grounders are the savages? What’s next, are you gonna tell me that the english settlers who came to Australia and massacred the aboriginal Australians for sport after stealing the entire country from them were the good guys? Because that’s the narrative message here.
  • Finn murders eighteen people and gets a pardon. Murphy murders a black member of the 100 and shoots Raven and never faces justice.
  • Meanwhile Bellamy punches Murphy for this and gets put in ark jail, Raven punches someone and Abby threatens to banish her. When did punching become worse than mass murder?
  • I haven’t watched the last couple of eps since Finn’s massacre because I’ve been so angry about it, but from what I’ve seen they’re putting all the Mountain Men atrocities onto the one guy (the nut who tortured Lincoln, which they also have to stop doing, it’s gross) and kinda keeping Dante Wallace clean. Like yeah, he’s overseeing a program where they drain grounders for blood like we milk cows, but he’s hesitant about doing the same thing to the 48 so maybe he’s not totally evil? No fandom, he is totally evil, and he’s also racist and elitist.
  • The whole horror story with the reapers. Sure it makes for good TV and this is a post apocalyptic world. But they’re still dehumanising the poc grounders and this shit doesn’t happen out of context of the real world. I’m not comfortable with it.
  • Anya’s murder. So totally pointless, never should have happened.
  • Commander Lexa should be poc, since the majority of grounders are. It’s a little gross that the grounder leader is white. Kinda takes away from the miniscule victory that is a woman in charge.
  • Isaiah Washington is a homophobe, the guy who plays Kane harassed a woman on the Lost set and got her fired. Thomas McDonnell, Devon Bostick and the guy who plays Wick have truly disgusting twitter accounts, sexist, racist, you name it, one of them has tweeted it.
  • Paige Turco’s skinny jeans. Those are 97 year old jeans, why are they so tight? It’s completely impractical, along with the low necklines on any woman. Really, they should all be wearing variations of the same uniform. Makes no sense that they’d take skinny jeans with them when trying to escape a nuclear holocaust.
  • Abby Griffin and Clarke Griffin being racist. calling the grounders savages, saying they’re better than them, stealing grounder territory and refusing to leave when confronted with that fact. If they have to be racist at least stop pretending they’re also the best things since sliced bread. They’re that uppity WASP woman who you hate in real life. You know the one who reads eat pray love and has a very narrow view of sexism and thinks all brown skinned men are terrorists. That’s who the griffins are. Also never forget Abby slapping Raven and not apologising or even showing an ounce of regret. Gross.
  • Finn Collins. Oh, I have so much to say about him. Firstly I’m glad that he’s dead. But I’m so upset about how they did it. I’m so upset that they absolved him of the spacewalking at Raven’s expense. I’m upset that he died a hero (he’s not, he’s a mass murderer. Would you call a school shooter a hero ever? Same difference, innocent people running away or huddled on the ground, no threat to him, no reason for them to die, but he did it anyway). In season 1  when he apparently became the “moral center” it rang false because of the deaths in the drop ship on day one and the spacewalk that cost people their lives through the waste of valuable oxygen. But it was okay because no one took him seriously when he talked. Then of course there’s the Clarke and Raven thing. Say all you want about how he didn’t think he’d ever see raven again, he still should have told Clarke about her. Such a douchebag. I can’t believe they wasted like two or three episodes after the massacre basically insisting that Finn wasn’t a bad guy for murdering 18 innocents and that the grounders are savages for wanting justice for that act.
  • They did a real job on the grounders, so racist. The whole thing about how they’re going to torture Finn before killing him, it’s so shitty. The grounders aren’t the bloodthirsty tribe, the reapers and the Mountain Men are, what’s more the reapers are only what they are through the manipulations of the white Mountain Men. it would have been more in character for the grounders to behead Finn or shoot him with a couple arrows. Instead they had the grounders plan to torture Finn so you’d be disgusted by them. Note, they only said that to manipulate the viewer because obviously it was never going to happen. Because of that, a lot of people agree with people like Clarke when she says they’re savages.
  • According to the narrative you’re absolutely not meant to walk away from the 100 feeling an ounce of sympathy for the grounders. When in reality they parallel really well with the American Indians or the Australian Aborigines. or any indigenous group that was slaughtered so white Europeans can steal their land. The way they’re being written is the way europeans used to (and still sometimes do) talk about the cultures they murder and enslave for profit. Right down to the savages label and talk about how they’re bloodthirsty and that they don’t have an equitable system of justice, because they’re savages.
  • God, this show is so racist on so many levels.
  • It’s not like it wins many points for feminism either, not what Jasper “low hanging fruit” Jordan stays on as a hero of the piece. That’s the kind of sexist asshole who should immediately die for his remarks. Instead he’s being written as a hero. How’d you feel if a guy called you “low hanging fruit” because you’re not as pretty as Marie Avgeropoulos? Ugh
  • Jason has said that there will be gay members of the 100. But so far there have been none and we’re halfway through season 2. The show might not get a season 3 (and doesn’t deserve one on current form), so he better hurry. Jason, you don’t get representation points until it happens on screen. Same applies to you, JK Rowling. God, it’s like if I went into a car dealership and said “I have a million dollars, give me the keys to that Ferrari”, those million dollars aren’t real just cos I said so. The car dealership is gonna want the real thing, and so should we as the viewers before we give Jason kudos for representation.
  • Of course even if we do get it, it’ll probably be two white boys and the fandom will idolise them even if they do gross things like murder or stuff, so I’ll hate it. Or maybe two lesbians, but the lesbians will be highly sexualised for the straight boys viewing pleasure (Is it just me who thinks it’d be really creepy to watch a lesbian love scene knowing it was written by an old creep like Jason and filmed with a bunch of middle aged men watching?). Definitely nothing bi or trans or anything else on the scale will get a look in.
  • Tell you what, I think a lot of the show’s problems would have been sold if the show was done from the grounders POV. Anya and Lincoln as the mains. Mostly because the grounders would be humanised and as a result it would be harder for everyone to ignore the crimes committed against them. I’d love to read an AU from Anya’s POV.

I could probably say more but I’ve now been writing this for 80 minutes so I’m gonna leave it here. Hey the100writers, feel free to take notes, I’m not saying I’ll ever forgive you for the crap you’ve done so far. But redemption arcs are fashionable these days so why don’t you try redeeming yourselves? (preferably instead of redeeming Murphy)

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ASYLUM CLUE ANALYSIS

So by (somewhat) popular demand, I’m making a post analyzing the clues we were given for Asylum before the season aired. Like I did in the Coven Clue Analysis, I’m going to go through each teaser and figure out what it hinted at in the season. And again, this is all my personal interpretation, if you find anything else please let me know! (Also there were a shit ton of Asylum teasers, so I apologize in advance for the length of this post).

Special Delivery (0:00-0:20)

Our first look at the “White Nun”, as we see her dumping buckets of body parts in the woods. Looking back now it’s evident that the White Nun (who appears in almost half of the teasers) is Sister Mary Eunice, and this represents her feeding Dr. Arden’s creatures.

Blue Coat (0:20-0:40)

We see a Black Nun (who likely represents Sister Jude) praying in a cubicle as the White Nun hangs a blue coat on the wall. Clearly the blue coat is a reference to the little girl in blue who Jude ran over, and so this signifies Sister Mary Eunice haunting Jude with her past. You’ll notice that the coat’s arms extend outward when the White Nun sits down, almost resembling a crucifix.

Hydrobath (0:40-0:55)

We’ve seen the hydrotherapy room many times, most notably when Lana and Grace were in there in “Tricks and Treats”. The woman probably represents Lana, since she appears to be submerged in milk (“baby needs colostrum…”). The zipper of the bath also vaguely resembles a certain female body part (hint: vagina), and that could refer to Lana birthing the son of Bloody Face.

White Rose (0:55-1:05)

I think this is another allusion to Mary Eunice. On the outside she seems beautiful and pure (the flower), but on the inside she is dangerous and demonic (the psycho girl that we are zoomed into). Plus I can’t help but think of SME’s line about “rosebud tits.”

Ascend (1:05-1:20)

Another SME reference! The “stairway to heaven” is blatantly obvious, as we have the innocent Mary Eunice trying to climb up it, while the crazed demon inside her is descending the other way. This girl climbing up the stairs backwards is an homage to The Exorcist, yet another clue that a possession takes place.

Glass Prison (1:20-1:30)

This is kind of tricky. Based on the noises the creature makes, I’m assuming it’s one of Arden’s raspers, but who knows. The glass prison may also just be a metaphor for the institution, or for how sanity is transparent? 

Red Rave (1:30-1:45)

We see a rave of inmates/raspers as a bucket full of guts is passed along. I think it’s pretty self-explanatory.

White Rave (1:45-2:00)

My personal fav, this time the White Nun is crowd surfing (note, also in a crucifix position). This likely symbolizes Mary Eunice being “carried” away from her purity by the corruption of the asylum.

Taste (2:00-2:15)

A patient being fed a pill by a figure probably meant to be Arden. Shows the use of medicine on the inmates.

Bandages (2:15-2:25)

Another tricky one. I’ve seen people think this has to do with the alien abductions, but the red dress leads me to believe this woman represents Mary Eunice again. The bandages remind me of the ones the Monsignor wore on his hands after being crucified, so perhaps this shows Mary Eunice’s end at the hands of Timothy Howard?

Fork (2:25-2:40)

The fork throws me off here, because one might think that symbolizes cannibalism, but we don’t see that in Asylum, unless you’re talking about the raspers. The skin makes me think of Bloody Face… maybe a knife would have been a better utensil to use.

Que Sera Sera (2:40-3:35)

Quick rundown: Leo is holding a camera since he’s on his haunted honeymoon tour; his other arm is obscured by Teresa (and one of his arms was cut off by Johnny). Mary Eunice is surrounded by the buckets of body parts that she must feed to the raspers. Kit is covered in welts from Jude’s beatings, and Grace is comforting him. Shelley is sex on sex with a side of sex. Lana’s writing on her arm to try to remember the truth, while Wendy lovingly looks at her. Thredson tries to control a patient similar to Jed Potter when he was being exorcised. The Monsignor and Dr. Arden sit on opposite sides of the bed, signifying the opposition of science and religion, and also their secret agreement to continue Arden’s experiments on the patients. Lastly Sister Jude looks like a BAMF. Also notice that Thredson and Mary Eunice are in patient beds, even though they were staff, which was probably the earliest indication that they would be Bloody Face and possessed, respectively.

Stitches (3:35-3:45)

The only thing I could think of is Bloody Face stitching together different skins to make his lamps and mask.

Help Us (3:45-4:00)

We have the White Nun and the Black Nun on opposite sides of the room, symbolizing Mary Eunice and Jude’s power struggle. The patient is forced in between the two.

Hellevator (4:00-4:10)

I like to think this represents Sister Jude as she descends into insanity. Also another tie to the “stairway to heaven” with the opposite of an “elevator to hell”.

Slipping (4:10-4:25)

Clearly this is a hint at Sister Jude’s red slip. Need I say more?

Spinning (4:25-4:40)

Not much to make of this one. I immediately think of the first time we meet Pepper, as she’s spinning around outside. The fact that it takes place in the woods makes me also think of the raspers.

Veiled (4:40-4:55)

This is another great one, and another hint at SME. The cracking sound makes me think of the statue of the Virgin Mary, which was smashed to pieces by Arden. It also alludes to the hard exterior that Mary Eunice has as she hides her real self beneath it. If you look closely the nun is also wearing lipstick… Ravish Me Red, perhaps?

Exam (4:55-5:05)

This hints at both the aliens’ experiments on their abductees, as well as Arden’s experiments in his lab.

The Woods (5:05-5:15)

Dr. Arden’s raspers hiding out in the woods outside Briarcliff.

Spiral (5:15-5:30)

Another allusion to the “stairway to heaven”, this time we see Jude walking up and confronting some patients on the stairs.

Awakening (5:30-5:40)

Another one of my favorites! The White Nun emerges from a sea of hands briefly before being forced down by them again. This represents those few moments when the innocent Mary Eunice would pop out and beg for a release, before the Devil would take over. I always thought the “awakening” meant Sister Mary Eunice would be revived, but that was just wishful thinking after her death.

Door (5:40-5:55)

The White Nun knocking on a door, which probably represents the solitary cells. I instantly think of the scene when Sister Mary Eunice comes to free Kit but insists Grace must still undergo sterilization.

Face (5:55-6:05)

Last but not least, our very first introduction to Bloody Face. We see the skin and leather hanging on the wall behind him, along with some of his equipment. If you look closely you can see some of the teeth from his mask. And if you listen closely you can hear a radio broadcasting the weather report, similar to the one Arden was listening to during the nor'easter.

[Bad Blood #1]

Series: Fairy Tail, Gangsta AU (you don’t need prior knowledge of Gangsta to understand this story).
Pairing: NaLu.
Genre(s): Romance, action, angst.
Triggers: Blood, violence, death.
Rated: M - triggers, sexually explicit content (this will be marked if you wish to skip over it, though).  

Read on FF.net: here.
Read others: here.

A/N: A lot of you are really worried about Natsu after reading the prologue but I just wanted to say, while there will be character death in this fic, the main ship will not be afflicted. But that’s all I can say, as I don’t want to spoil the story! xD

Summary: In a town where guns call the shots and virtue is paid in blood, Lucy Heartfilia must chase the promise of freedom with little more than crumbling resolve. It is here, in the dark underbelly of Magnolia’s truths, that Lucy encounters Natsu Dragneel, whose penetrating eyes open a window into the world of the damned. If Lucy is to discover what it truly means to fly, she must first learn what it means to fall.

Chapter 1: Rain

“Igneel?! Are you in here?”

There had been rumours floating through the cesspool that was the remains of Magnolia Town – rumours of a tall man with fiery red hair wreaking havoc amongst the towns people. It had to be Igneel. It just had to be. If Natsu knew anything about his foster father, it was that he knew how to make an entrance and leave a mark on his territory. This kind of chaos, this kind of madness: it had the unyielding strength of his father woven into every detail. 

Groping along the walls, Natsu took in every splatter of blood, every human left for dead, as he trudged his way into the heart of Magnolia Town. Though clues like this often lead to a dead end, sometimes literally, Natsu had a feeling this one was different. Every body, every puddle of viscera, kept Natsu on the right path. His father never killed unless there was good reason to – he’d taught Natsu to beseech forgiveness in times of great cruelty. That’s why, for now, Natsu tried to understand his old man’s reasons for abandoning him.

There had to be a reason. There just had to be.

Tugging at the tail of his scarf, Natsu ducked into an adjoining alleyway and followed the trail of blood until he emerged into a vacant street. The windows of houses had been boarded up, most of which were splintered in someone’s desperate attempt at finding shelter inside. Most of the doors had been kicked in. Many of the stores had long since been abandoned. It was a wasteland. Not a soul walked out in the open anymore. They were all hidden away from the clutches of chaos. As if they could hide forever. The jaws of evil would close on them soon. They always did. That’s why, for Igneel’s sake, Natsu would never stop searching. 

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Racism on a boat

So you guys didn’t see me for a week (if you noticed) because I was taking a nice cruise to the Bahamas with my best friend.  The trip was great.  Relaxing.  Scenic.  Except for one incident which, unfortunately, isn’t that unique of an experience for me as a black woman in America.

My friend and I were staying in a suite on the cruise ship (which was great) and and was coming back from the gym area after a workout.  I was about to put my room card in the door when I hear a voice coming down the hallway.  I look up and see a white woman in her late fifties to early sixties rushing up to me.  She then calls back to her roomate:

“I’ll get the towels.  She’s right here.”

I was confused for a moment, trying to recall if I knew this woman at all or had met her previously on the boat and one of the cruise activities.  But I didn’t know her from a hole in the wall and gave her a puzzled look.

She gazed at me and said:

“Can you give us extra towels for our room? We don’t need it cleaned today, we just need towels.”

Oh.

Oh.  

I must have glared at her because she withered away from me at that point and then walked back to her room.  

She had, not knowing anything about me, seeing that I was in gym attire and clearly had a room key, still assumed I was the help or that I was room service despite the fact I had no  tag or uniform distinguishing me as such.  Because after all why would a black person be on the deck with the suites?  How could I be a passenger just like her enjoying my time at sea?

Now if you asked this lady if she were racist she would deny it. Just in the same way of when I was ten years old and a white family came into the pool area, took one look at the black family there, and then declared it was too dirty for them to swim in and then denied any racism when my father confronted him.  After all, he worked with black people, he would never be a racist.

When people talk about white privilege this is what they mean.  If I had been a white person in the hallway with the same attire, the assumption would have never been made that I was a maid.  We more than likely would have talked nicely about the cruise and if I had seen a worker around that could get her extra towels.  But instead it was a moment where she decided because I was black I was below her and couldn’t possibly be an equal to her.  Or even that the workers who worked on the boats were human being who had families, children, and were working to have their own vacations after months on sea.

So, yeah.  Great vacation but this is unfortunately what I have to deal with even there.  

Racism is a bitch.