how do they expect me to live

Poor Person: I need food stamps so I don’t starve.

Conservative: That’s lazy. Get a job.

Poor Person: Fine. I got a job, but it doesn’t pay enough. The minimum wage needs to be raised.

Conservative: Still lazy. Go to college so you can get a better job.

Poor Person: Fine. But I’ll need financial assistance to afford college.

Conservative: Still lazy.

Poor Person: Fine. I went to college, put myself in debt, and got a degree. But the only jobs I can get without experience are unpaid internships. Businesses should be required to pay their interns.

Conservative:

Conservative: Still lazy.

Poor Person: How the hell do you expect me to get out of debt?

Conservative: It’s your own fault. You choose to go to college even though you couldn’t afford it.

Poor Person: But you’re the one who keeps telling poor people to go to college. Are you saying that I’m lazy if I don’t go to college, and lazy if I do?

Conservative: Yes.

Poor Person: Then what the hell should I do?

Conservative: Be born rich.

settle down | (m)

• pairing: min yoongi x reader, roommate! yoongi
• genre/warnings: smut, angst, fluff, slow buuurrrn, enemies to lovers
• words: 14,930
→summary: An unfortunate event finds you living with the man you practically despise over the summer. However, maybe through a series of fortunate events, you find yourself falling for him…
• note. this is a remastered version of the originally story I wrote called ‘and july’ (found here) that I wrote for suho back when I started this blog, albeit slightly (very?) different.

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  • someone: you were pretty good at that thing, why'd you stop doing it?
  • me internally: I get extremely anxious when I think about doing something I might possibly succeed at because I base my self-worth on my achievements and other people's approval, I am afraid because I know I will never be able to live up to my own unrealistic expectations, I hate making mistakes because they make me feel worthless, I take negative feedback too personally, I feel immense guilt over not doing things that I've been avoiding which just makes me avoid them more, I feel ashamed and inadequate due to how difficult it is for me to stay committed to anything, I'm worried that I'll just end up disappointing myself and the entire world, and I am convinced that if I failed I would literally die.
  • me externally: idk i guess i've just been kinda busy lol

okay, now that i got to read the full translation of the clip, i have to say that…i don’t agree with how this conversation went 

i don’t expect isak to say the perfect things. he still has a lot to learn, and he will never be able to fully understand sana’s experiences as a muslim woc living in norway. it was realistic for him to not say all the right things. and they both got to share their point of views, how they see the situation from their perspective. it was good thing to see them do that

the thing that bothers me, however, is that it sounded as though isak was the one educating sana on this matter, when it really should’ve been the other way around. because sana is the one who knows here. she’s the one who experiences the racism and the islamophobia, not him. once again, it was great for them to have this conversation, but we should’ve seen isak listen to sana, and be corrected by her, and not the opposite

Spiritworker's Guide to Crafting an Enchanted Amulet

[SEE A REAL EXAMPLE OF THIS SPELL HERE]

There is one way of creating a protective amulet. This method involves taking powers and energies and adding them on to a “blank” object. This method works well and I have used it many times before.

However, many of us in spirit work are not really interested in witchcraft-based spellwork. I would like to present a new method of creating a protective amulet, by awaking the spirit within the amulet itself, and getting it to agree to protect whoever wears or holds the amulet.

DIFFICULTY LEVEL: Beginner

First, though, a few words on protection.

I generally expect certain nature spirits to be nice guys. Never met a vicious crystal (a few grumpy and mean ones, but never an evil rock). A few plant spirits have attacked me but I stray far from home. I do not think anyone carrying out these exercises of talking to basic, friendly spirits is going to be at risk. There are however a few notes I do have:

  • DO NOT work with any materials that make you feel uncomfortable, nervous, or worried. Such feelings are not indicative that the material has a lot of power; it means the material is WRONG for this project.
  • Stick with my recommended materials list coming up if you really want to focus on spirits that are known to be friendly towards humans.
  • It is up to you to adjust the contents of this post as you see fit, experiment, and try new magic. Once you leave the beaten trail, you need to start working within your own system of protections.


PROCESS

You will be using a rock or crystal, a natural object like a pine cone, or a collection of herbs bound in a sachet. It is vital you choose an object which you believe contains a protective spirit. If you associate bluebirds with flowers and clouds, don’t use a bluebird feather for this project.

Certain materials are more traditional because people have had success with them over and over again. I will list my recommended amulet materials next.

You will “awaken” this spirit, talk to it, get to know it, and secure its service as a protector. You can then empower the spirit and learn how to take care of it, feed it, and cleanse it.

In the end, you should have an awoken and empowered spirit vessel working as a powerful protector on your behalf.

MATERIALS

Spirit worker 101: “Protection” doesn’t work the same way with every spirit. An onyx spirit may produce an astral warrior to fight your enemies, while a cinnamon spirit may produce a wall to protect you. Which would better serve you? Choose your allies wisely; talk to many potential allies before you choose the one you really want to work with. Even better, secure several allies who can all work together to help you in powerful ways.

Here are my recommended materials:

Any black crystal or rock, or any crystal or rock known for its powers of protection. Examples are onyx, tourmaline, and hematite. Also, hag stones make excellent natural protective amulets.

A piece of wood from any holy tree (perhaps from a pagan tradition you follow), or a tree with traditional protective properties in your culture. Examples where I live are oak and pine. Dried and preserved leaves/needles, bark, acorns, or pine cones, will also work well.

Rosemary, mullein, cinnamon, cloves, basil, or bay leaf are my top six herbal allies for defense and protection. Put them in a tiny necklace jar or in a small cloth sachet.

FIRST STEPS - tl;dr: Cleanse the vessel and cast a circle.

There is one basic safety measure everyone can take when approaching a potential new spirit. You can thoroughly cleanse and purify the vessel. A harsh cleansing is not necessary; something gentle and thorough will suffice. Choose a method that will not damage the physical material you have chosen.

Incense Take some purifying incense. If you can manage it, burn or singe some bay leaf. Hold your object in the incense smoke and vividly imagine that the smoke goes not only over the object but inside of it! Imagine the gentle cleansing incense purifies the object and takes away every negative energy and ill-intent, leaving it purified and connected to Nature.

Water Place your object underneath running water (the sink or tub will do; natural is great if you can manage it). Imagine that the water streams inside of and through the object, rinsing away every negative and unwanted energy.

Earth Bury the object in natural soil for 24 hours, or three days for a very serious case. Expose the soil to sunlight and moonlight to improve the process.

Light Using your favorite energy work technique, create a ball of purifying and cleansing energies. Immerse your object inside of this sphere of energy and let it be cleansed. Draw the energy inside of your object so it is thoroughly cleansed.

After you cleanse you will want to follow a basic protective measure. This is possibly the simplest thing you can do to protect yourself at this stage. Cast a circle intended to keep spirits out.

When your object is cleansed and ready to become an amulet, go to where you would like to talk to the spirit (I usually choose my bedroom because all my magical stuff is in there). Face east. Point at the ground and envision a blue flame spring from the ground. Turn around in a clockwise motion, repeating this phrase:

“This ground be purified, protected, and blessed, in the name of my highest Powers; this circle keep all spirits out except the one I invite.”

(Alter this to refer to your higher powers by name, or reference your own power).

Once you finish the circle and return to the east, imagine the blue flame springs up in a glorious sphere that completely surrounds you, keeping out all spirits except the one you invite.

Now you are ready to begin!

TALKING TO THE SPIRIT FOR THE FIRST TIME - tl;dr: Focus on the spirit, talk to it. Ask it if it will help you make an amulet; if it says no, move on. If it says yes, continue talking and making friends.

Spirit communication is the easiest thing in the world. Don’t psyche yourself out about it. Hold your object or place it on a nice, clean surface. It should now be purified and you should be inside a protective circle (why a circle? When you call for a spirit and not in a properly warded space, any spirit may arrive. Always ward before you call spirits!).

Focus on the object. Consider what may be inside of it, what spirit may rest there.

Touch the object if you feel like it. Hold it close, put it on your forehead like me if you really get in to it. Do whatever feels comfortable. When you are ready, call to the spirit:

“Spirit of this [object], known for its protective powers, will you come greet me today? I need to speak with you.”

While you make this call, visualize or believe that your words reach the soul of the object you are talking to, igniting it and ‘waking it up’ from its slumber.

For me an action like this typically garners immediate response. If you do not receive a response, a few things may be going on: Either the spirit is not interested in speaking with you, or you don’t know how to hear it, or it didn’t hear you the first time.

Try asking one more time, and see what happens. If the spirit still does not reply, put the object down, feed it some energy, and try again later.

If you actually get a response, DO NOT expect a living fae to rise out of the physical stone, dancing in front of you like so many LSD hallucinations. You are going to receive a response within your mind 9 times out of 10. You will receive input in one form or another. Some people experience external emotions, feelings, and sensations which are not their own. Other people hear words, sounds, songs, or other verbal communication. Other people have visions of spirits within their mind. Some people simply “know”, and “know” when the spirit hears them and “know” what the spirit’s response is, without ever having any kind of tangible input. Everyone’s experience is different.

In my typical experience, I would “see” a spirit in my mind’s eye, as well as feel the spirit’s energies and intent, and hear words they speak. You may have a totally different way of communication!

For first contact, introduce yourself. “Hi, my name is Cranberry. I called you because I would love to work with you, and I think we can be of benefit to each other.” State who you are and clearly state your intentions. There is no need to beat around the bush, spirits aren’t usually offended when people seek out their aid.

Then, you wait for the spirit to respond. If you get “no way”, “not my thing,” sensations or feelings, thank the spirit and put it away and choose something else to be your amulet.

Spiritworker 101: You’re a fucking idiot if you force spirits to be your servants and slaves. They’re only eventually going to turn against you, and you’ll eventually gain a permanent spiritual reputation as an asshole that good guys won’t work with any more. There are SO MANY good and helpful spirits that will willingly work for fair pay, which we owe them. I’ve heard the most stupid, idiotic excuses that novices make to defend abuse and slavery. Fuck you if you enslave spirits.

If you get “go ahead,” “I’m interested,” or, “go on….” vibes, continue.

MAKING THE DEAL – tl;dr Be nice to the spirit and ask it to help you.

There is a difference between wild spirits that can fend for themselves, and spirits taken out of their natural environment to come live in my house. A spirit that lives in my unnatural house may not have access to the food and ability to cleanse and care for itself as it otherwise would. So right away I usually ask a spirit that lives in my house if it would like a nice, small offering. A glass of fresh water is more than enough, sometimes a bit of incense is appreciated. Occasionally a spirit will ask for a specific enchanted formula in my room that will give them a good boost.

In general, continue casting your protective circle every time you talk to this spirit. ESPECIALLY if the space you are working in is not fully warded!! If you are working in a fully warded space and you know how to connect with the spirit inside the object, then I wouldn’t worry too much about protective circles unless you really just want to be extra safe :)

Up to this point, the object has been cleansed and we are inside a protective circle. We are assuming I have just made first contact with the spirit and it has given me signals to continue. So here I will offer it a small offering such as a glass of water.

If the spirit is quiet or is not saying much, or if it asks for more info, fill the spirit in. Simply tell the spirit you seek a protective ally, one that can guard you against malicious spirits and negative energies, and protect against the ill-intent of other humans. Say why you have chosen this spirit – did it come highly recommended? Have you had a personal experience with its protective abilities? And state what you will do to pay the spirit back. Try offering a cleansing twice a month and energy feedings once a week, or both whenever necessary.

Many protective spirits I know are warriors and are proud and boastful about their abilities. They often leap at the chance to protect someone and will gladly do it. Other spirits are more cautious or coy and will not agree right away, instead wanting to talk more and get to know you more. If a spirit is not agreeing to protect you, no need to beg or convince it; thank it, put it away, and try another spirit instead. You may find it is just necessary to actually get to know spirits in general more before they agree to work with you, so in that case it is fine to spend however much time you need getting to know the spirit.

Ultimately most spirits I know will have some questions so spend some time answering anything the spirit wants to know. They may want to know if you have any enemies they must defeat, what kind of ailments you have, what energies you are facing, what kind of cleansing they will receive, what kind of food they will receive, and so on. Hash out the details and take notes as needed so you do not forget any part of the agreement being made.

In general you are making a business deal (even if you guys become great friends and allies) and you need to work out some details:

Will the spirit help you only when it is specifically called? Do you need to be aware of danger before it will kick in? Or will the spirit stay vigilant and watch? Should you tell him when to be vigilant? Do you want him always aware? The more active the spirit is, the more feedings it will require. Everything is an exchange. Do you want to be aware of when you are being protected of negative energies, or not? Do you want the spirit to alert you if it senses something nearby? Will it protect an area it is in, or only a human who specifically holds it? Work out all these details. In general, asking the spirit to give you a sense of security when it is “working” is a great idea. It lets you know within a few moments if your spirit ally is able to help you that day.

If you are making a general protective amulet, skip this step. If you know you have specific enemies, whether they be human or spirit, ask the amulet spirit what it can specifically do to protect against your enemies. Depending on how easily you can work with spirits and make amulets such as this one, it may be worth your while to spend the time finding an ally who can help you the most against specific beings you face.

Sooner or later the spirit is either going to agree or disagree. I’ve never gotten a “let me think about it” from a nature spirit before. They pretty much seem to know what they’re going to do. If the spirit disagrees, thank it and return it to where it belongs. If it agrees, you now have secured the services of a protective spirit!

TESTING YOUR AMULET -tl;drshow me what you gotttt

Now a spirit has agreed to be a protector. But in my way of working you don’t just “finish up”. For anyone interested in above-beginner energy work, spirit work, spell work, and astral travel, you need to figure out how this magic is actually literally realistically going to work on your behalf.

Once I am in communion with the spirit and they have agreed to help me, I ask to see an example of how their protective powers work against a specific enemy. For example, you can ask, “how would your charms help me against another spirit seeking to harm me?” Then wait and see what input you get.

I will get visions of how thinks “work” according to my understanding of the astral. No matter what you should gain at least a slightly better understanding of how your enchantment is going to work, even if you only get a feeling such as “security” or an image of a wall.

In general I ask these three questions:

“Can you show me how you will protect me against malicious spirits?”
“Can you show me how you will protect me against energies or spells?”
“Can you show me how you will protect me against malicious humans?**”

**These amulets are for protection during spiritual encounters, not physical encounters. Do not rely on magic to keep you physically safe.

If I am satisfied that the spirit knows what it is doing (and if you used any of the recommended materials, it should), I thank it for its time. I give it a feeding, a nice offering as thanks for making this deal, and I either “hang up” or spend enjoyable time with this spirit.

MAINTAINING YOUR AMULET AND THE SPIRIT WITHINtl;dr uphold your end of the deal, feed the spirit, be nice to it.

Once your deal has been made, try talking to this spirit regularly. This is especially nice if you have no other companions or limited spirit experience. Remember to cast your circle every time if you are working outside of a fully warded space. Try wearing or touching the amulet as you work with it :)

DON’T forget to cleanse and feed the spirit as you have agreed. If you have to “take a break”, low spoon month, etc. – see if you can’t at least say hello to the spirit and explain the situation. Otherwise, I often find these types of protective spirits to be good-natured and not prone to anger (especially rocks).

Wear or hold your amulet whenever you need it. Activate it by whatever word or signal you agreed to if it does not always remain aware.

Use this amulet as protection while doing other spirit work, astral traveling, or simply when you need it daily. Talk to the spirit within the amulet regularly; it is not a mindless spell, it is a real being. Ask it about things that happen to you and seek greater insight. A spirit that follows you around regularly may have great insight in to your life.

A spirit may be empowered in certain ways. Keeping the vessel very thoroughly cleansed and energetically fed makes a huge difference.

To energetically feed a vessel, choose one of the following methods:

Incense Take some vivifying incense, something bright and enjoyable. If you are unsure of what to choose, ask the spirit within or choose a scent you think that individual would like. If you get an unclear response, go with basil and chamomile or any stick incense. Hold the vessel over the smoke and imagine the smoke is drawn within and turns in to a feast for the spirit to enjoy. Imagine the spirit of the vessel feasting on the smoke and enjoying it immensely. If you get feelings of “no” or “stop”, the spirit does not like the incense presented and you should of course stop immediately.

Flame Light a candle of any type. Hold the vessel over the candle flame and imagine the heat and light from the candle arise and go inside the vessel, warming it and giving the spirit pure energy from which it can heal and rest.  

Offerings Gather foods, beverages, consumables (such as tobacco), and/or alcohol. Place the offerings next to the vessel and encourage the spirit to come out and enjoy all the physical offerings placed before them.

Light Using your favorite energy work technique, create a ball of energizing and healing energies. Put this energy in to the vessel and encourage the spirit to use it and enjoy it according to their greatest needs and desires.

A spirit may also be empowered by giving it various magical waters, potions, and formulas. A spirit vessel adorned with War Water can give the spirit within special abilities, in my experience UPG alert I guess I’ve never heard anyone else talk about this. I find my spirits greatly enjoy the formula Glory Water, which they request regularly. They also like a custom blend of mine called Snake Water, which is actually just a very simple and highly cleansing formula.

Store your vessel somewhere it is comfortable. I hang mine on the wall usually, you may want to keep yours on your altar or in a nice, special space. If you ever lose the need for this vessel, tell the spirit within that you have lost your need for its services and break the contract.

I HOPE THIS HELPED! MESSAGE ME WITH QUESTIONS :3

4

YOI Future!Verse ABO AU, Visual Headcanon Web Charts #01

So I always wanted to make one of these. Turns out my headcanons for the most part are WAY too wordy for these things and uh, they’re a bit of a mess >.>;; BUT I hope nonetheless that they’re somewhat fun to read even if barely legible, it was fun to make ^ ^;

1. Super basic relationship chart of the core members of the lovely poly family in this AU.

2. “Adults Think,” the color of each adult indicates their feelings towards the person to whom the arrow is pointing.

3. “Kids Think,” the color of each OC kid indicates their feelings towards the person to whom the arrow is pointing.

There’s obviously a lot more to it than what could be crammed in the lil text boxes, but a gist and pretty much the first things that immediately popped into my mind regarding their interactions. 2 and 3 also mostly show their thoughts while the kids are younger, which will change a bit as they grow up, to be covered in a future post.

*Recommended you right click view image to see full size bc the text is tiny oops

Because the text is so illegible, text only versions of charts 2 and 3 beneath cut, all elaborated quite a bit because I’m so rambly oops:

~~

IF YOU ARE NEW TO THIS AU: It’s Yuuri-centric polyamory in an ABO setting, Yuuri’s married to four mates (Victor, Yurio, Phichit, Minami) and they have OC kids.

BASICS of this AU

INTRO to how ABO works in this AU

OTHER POSTS (comics + illustrations) in the Future!Verse ABO section of my YOI Masterpost.

~~

Please keep ship bashing out of the comments/tags. Don’t like, just skip <3 Thank you.

~~

PLEASE DO NOT REPOST, EDIT, OR OTHERWISE USE MY ART WITHOUT MY EXPLICIT PERMISSION. More detailed rules available on my Rules & FAQ Post.

~~

Keep reading

Arranged Marriage Starters

“You’re not what I was expecting.”

“I’m not going through with this and you can’t make me.”

“Look, I’m not any happier about this than you are, but why don’t we try and make this work.”

“We don’t have to be in love, but maybe we could be friends.”

“Wow. I wasn’t expecting someone who looked like you do.”

“Arranged marriages are weird. All your life you’re told not to talk to strangers and then you’re asked to sleep with one.”

“I can sleep on the couch if you prefer.”

“How am I supposed to live with them when I love someone else?”

“You’re making me marry THEM?”

“Don’t you touch me.”

“It’s my parents. They’ve arranged me to marry someone else.”

“So how much was my life worth to you?”

“Uh… I know we don’t really have a choice, but will you marry me?”

“Why don’t we go pick out a ring together?”

“This doesn’t have to be forever. If it doesn’t work out we can always get a divorce.”

“Listen, my parents paid for you. You’re my property now.”

“Let’s start simple. What’s your favorite color?”

“The only reason I need you is make sure that my bloodline has an heir.”

“I will never love you.”

As a former member of Congress representing New York’s 3rd congressional district, I want to chime in. I’ve seen activism from both ends — as an ordinary citizen and an elected official — and I’ve seen what works and specific actions we can all take that will truly resonate.

1. Show up

I recently recorded a video for Mic about the most effective action you can take to influence your lawmakers. To sum it up: In 2010, we saw the Tea Party quickly rise to power across the country as the Affordable Car Act was being considered. I remember some of my colleagues in Congress reporting back to me that they had held town halls, which usually attracted maybe 20 constituents, and walked into rooms filled with hundreds or even thousands of people. I saw for myself when I held a town hall on Obamacare and had to answer to hundreds of constituents asking me questions about the legislation.

You may not agree with their politics, but the Tea Party was effective in getting members of Congress to answer their questions and consider their opinions.

My call to you: Show up to events that your local congressperson or senator (on both the state and federal level) are hosting. Don’t know how to find that information? Call 202-224-3121 and asked to be connected to your member of Congress or senator. Ask them when their next public event is. Then show up and ask them why they voted a certain way, voice your support if you agree with what they’re doing, tell them why you disagree if you don’t agree with how they voted.

2. Join a civic organization

Yes, I likely have many years on you. I remember a time when there was no such thing as a home computer, never mind the internet. We are so much more powerful these days. We have access to an incredible amount of knowledge and can be part of networks without even leaving our couch. But, this is also a disadvantage. We don’t talk to each other face to face, and we hide behind a screen that allows us to retreat into our corners.

My call to you: Join an organization. Maybe it’s a church, synagogue or mosque. Maybe it’s a volunteer group. Maybe it’s a political organization or maybe it’s simply a book club. Talk to new people. Get to know what scares them and what motivates them. Don’t let the bullying and name calling that dominates public discourse detract from your own humanity. We need more opportunities to connect with each other in our increasingly polarized country.

3. Learn about how the government works

According to an Annenberg Public Policy survey done in 2015, only 31% of Americans can name all three branches of our government. There’s hardly a statistic that scares me more. We can do all the yelling and opining we want, but if we don’t understand how our government works, how can we expect to affect any positive change? Imagine an electrician showing up to your house who doesn’t know how the wiring works.

My call to you: Educate yourself! Re-read our Constitution, understand what it is our Founding Fathers were creating, know which branch controls which function of government. Read books like George Orwell’s 1984 or Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 to understand the warnings they share. We are all affected by government and laws at every level in our daily lives (Did you drive on roads today? See a law enforcement officer patrolling?). It’s imperative we understand its inner workings.

4. Devote half an hour every day to reading diverse sources of news

I get it. Reading news can be hard these days. In fact, it seems hard to separate fact from fiction. But Thomas Jefferson was right when he said, “An informed citizenry is at the heart of a dynamic democracy.” We cannot expect to hold the president and Congress accountable if we don’t know what they’re doing.

My call to you: Read the news. Devote a half an hour a day. Diversify your sources, but stick to real journalism. Avoid overly partisan rants on both sides.  Get the facts. Support our journalists — their jobs are more important than ever.

5. Vote!

This is a no-judgement zone, but I must ask: Did you vote this past November? Only 55% of Americans did. And that number gets even lower when we look at years in which there’s no presidential election. In 2014, only 36.4% of Americans took the time to make their voices heard. And we’re worse off because of it. Even though we only vote for a president every four years, we vote for state and local officials, congressmen and women and maybe your senator or governor on other years. Make sure you’re voting whenever there’s an election. All elections matter.

My call to you: In 2018, there will be a midterm election. Every member of Congress will be up for reelection, as well as many senators. Make sure you vote. Make sure your voice is heard. There’s nothing more important you can do as a citizen.

— Former Congressman Steve Israel, Read more

punsbulletsandpointythings  asked:

Your myth retellings are gorgeous. Would you tell another please? Maybe something with Hermes?

Pandora is made from earth, shaped by the hands of Hephaestus and made in the image of his beloved wife. Aphrodite gifts her with grace and charisma. Athena teaches her to weave and bestows cleverness upon her.

She stands in front of Hermes, and the god frowns and touches her with a single fingertip on her chin, moving her head one way than the other. “They’ll eat you alive,” he says, and she doesn’t understand.

She tilts her head to the side and smiles a vacant smile. All of the cleverness in the world will do her no good without any context. “We are the same,” she says, pressing a hand to Hermes’s chest. She is made from earth and has the skin to mach. He is a celestial god, and his skin is the same rich shade of brown.

He did not ask to be born any more than his mother asked to bare him. His creation, just like hers, is at the whims of Zeus. All for some little lost fire, all because Prometheus wanted his people to be warm, and, well, he is the god of the thieves after all –

So he gifts her with deceit, with selfishness, with cunning. Her smile leaves her face all at once as she’s filled with self-awareness. “He’ll be angry with you,” she says, “I am not what you were supposed to make.”

“Gods have short memories,” he says, and doesn’t bother to hide the contempt in his voice. “Do not worry about me, gifted child. You have larger problems than my fate.”

He has turned her from something pure into – something more like him. Her face darkens even further as her perfectly crafted mind slots all the pieces together, and he can’t help but find her lovely. It’s how she was made, after all. “I can’t stop it, can I? Whatever they’re planning for me to do?”

“No,” Hermes says, “but now you might be able to survive it.”

“Will I want to?” she asks, and he doesn’t answer. She doesn’t expect him too.

~

She hides from everyone, lives in a cave at the edge of the city. The gods had called her the first woman, but that’s not true, she can see.

There are women. They smile and laugh have work roughened hands. She aches to join them, but she has the beauty of a goddess. They will know. If she joins them, they will know she is not of them, and it will set into motion whatever trap Zeus has planned.

She is not human, not in the same way, molded from clay by a god’s hands. But she is of humans, and not eager to bestow upon them the harm she’s destined to bring them. She bathes in streams where only nymphs reside, steals into the city in the cloak of night and pilfers from the baker’s trash.

“When they said they sent my brother a wife,” a low, amused voice says too close behind her one night, “I had not expected a begger.”

She whirls around, hard bread clenched tight in front of her, an incredibly inefficient shield. Her breath catches in her throat when she sees him, dark and tall and eyes like the night sky. He looks like Hermes. Like her. “Who are you?” she demands. They’re in an alley corner, and of her gifts flight is not among them. She’ll have to fight him to get away.

She’s not afraid of him. Maybe another mortal would be, cornered in the middle of the night by a man she doesn’t know. But she’s no normal mortal woman, and besides – he has something comforting about him, like the hearthfire attended by Hestia. Something warm.

“I am Prometheus,” says the man, and no wonder he reminds her of fire. “What do they call you?”

“You are meant to be in the deepest pits of Hades’s realm,” she snaps, and shifts her grip on the stale bread so that she can throw it at him. He’s the whole reason she’s here to begin with, him and his thievery.

He shrugs and walks closer to her, watching her like one would watch a wild animal. Good. Here, in this dark alley where no one would find a cooling body until morning, it is he that should be afraid. “Gods forget,” he says, “and Hades had grown cold in his place beneath the earth.”

She pauses, considers. “You stole fire for Hades?”

“No,” he corrects, “I stole fire for the people. But Hades benefited as well. Enough that he was willing to forget the terms of my punishment.”

“What do you want?” she asks for the second time. “Why are you here?”

He stops, too close to her, “The question is why are you here?”

She steps into his space now, following him as he backs away from her, “I am here because of you, fire-stealer, because gods may forget but they do not forgive, and I am the punishment they have unleashed upon the world.”

“What a punishment you are,” he says, looking at her lips, and she forgets to hate him only long enough to kiss him.

~

Hermes watches her, watches them. He doesn’t know Zeus’s plan, if this is part of it or not, but he watches her, and he worries. He thinks it is, he can see Aphrodite’s magic clinging to Pandora, but he doesn’t know why.

He would go to his mother, but she’s always difficult to find, Gaea preferring to live in streams and rivers rather than face the man she bore a son for. But his mother’s father, on the other hand, is always in the same place.

“Grandfather,” Hermes greets, touching lightly down onto the earth, “How are you?”

“How am I always, boy?” Atlas grunts out, legs and arms straining as he holds up the sky above the earth. “Tired.”

Hermes lips quirk up the corners. Some days, he thinks he’s more Atlas’s grandson than he’s Zeus’s son. “I need some advice, Grandfather.”

Atlas raises an eyebrow, “I’m listening.”

So Hermes tells him everything, from beginning to end, because he can’t figure out what his father’s plan is, but Atlas might. He’s known the man for longer, at least.

Atlas nods, slow, and says, “A bride of gods, a gifted child. I can think of only one reason to create such a child.” Hermes waits. Atlas sighs and says, “There is a jar, within Olympus, that becomes sealed when it leaves the realm of the gods. After that, only a being neither mortal nor celestial may open it.”

“What are they planning to put inside?” Hermes demands, heart spiking. What are they planning to unleash upon the unsuspecting earth?

His grandfather smirks, “It doesn’t matter. What matters is this – what are you going to put inside?”

Keep reading

  • them: hey u should do this thing I think you'd be really good at it
  • me: I don't want to, sorry
  • them: *disappointed*
  • me, in my head: YOU FUCKED UP!!! YOU FUCKED UP!!!! YOU FUCKED UP!!!!!! YOU FUCKED UP!!!!!!!!! YOU FUCKED UP!!!
Mac Demarco asks
  • Ode to Viceroy: Are you a smoker?
  • My Kind of Woman: Whats your 'type'?
  • Still Together: How long is/was your longest relationship?
  • Salad Days: Would you describe yourself as an easy going person?
  • Blue Boy: Are you more of an internally anxious person or externally anxious person?
  • Goodbye Weekend: Do you feel you struggle to live up to your own expectations?
  • Chamber of Reflection: Do you like being alone?
  • A Heart like Hers: Do you think love changes a person?
  • Let my Baby Stay: Do you think long distance relationships work?
  • Passing out Pieces: Do you think you spread yourself too thin?
  • Without Me: Are you friendly with your exes?
I am not a people’s person
I live on my own accord
I don’t really care about anybody else most of the time
But I get hurt when they don’t care about me
Half the time I don’t even realise that I hurt someone
And many times I do it on purpose
Expecting them to be okay with it
I expect them to come back to me
To be with me the way they have always been
Even after hurting them
I know it is selfish and I know I am selfish
But that is how I have always been
There is no changing me
—  What I mean when I say that I am not a nice person // JustScribbledWords

anonymous asked:

I just need to comment how much I love the fact that they seem to now have separate spaces for filming and living!! I can't understand how weird it must've been to not have a place in their old house that was just theirs, and I'm happy to think they may get this privacy now (and if they do decide to share little bits of the upstairs part, then great. But I hope they do what makes them more comfortable!!)

They’ve made their upstairs a sanctuary and away from work while their downstairs is where they’ll record everything and I’m so happy about that because I can imagine how flustered dan and phil could’ve gotten in the london apartment having no space to themselves that didn’t remind them of making videos and to hide away IM SO HAPPY FOR THEM AND THE LONDON DUPLEX WILL BE GREAT

it’s funny how just a few lines from dnp’s own mouths about a certain issue can completely change the way you see something that you thought you’d fully thought through and had a grasp of before. i was quite certain that in this new place they would likely not film in their bedroom(s) because i thought i understood, on an intellectual level at least, how awful it must be to know that millions of people can constantly look into the places where you live/sleep and generally have all of the intimate, personal, human moments of your life. it just made no sense to me for two people who are so, so private and value that privacy so much. i’ve frequently thought about how they might have felt trapped in this house that they chose and the filming habits they developed when they were five years younger and more naive about the degree to which their audience would continue to grow and grow. but somehow it hit me in a more visceral way today, and in a sharper way, to hear dan talk about how they were going crazy in that house, not just for the somewhat silly/comedic reasons they listed in their announcement video but because their whole house was also their filming set. he talked about how the gaming office was also their actual office and their whole house is always full of cameras and lights. it made me think so much more deeply about what it must be like to live that way, in which the physical space that you occupy and that you treat as a haven and a sanctuary–the only place you’re ever away from prying eyes–is still constantly exposed to those same prying eyes all the time bc you have nowhere else to go. and shelling out money for another filming space (”an office” like many popular youtubers have started renting separately from their homes over the past few years) never seemed like a move dnp could make. they are apathetic and probably legitimately anxious in certain ways to leave their home,  and they seem to genuinely enjoy working from home and staying inside as much as they can. and shooting their vids in the place they live gives them a ton of flexibility– like the ability to film at 3am, which seems to have become habitual for them. 

basically. without rambling about this for too long. i’m emotional in the best way that they’ve found a place that presents a perfect solution to these issues that they’ve had to live with for so long. i’m just so so happy for them. they’ve created a way to continue working from home but to also have an actual home where they can be fully and authentically themselves and never have to worry about the fact that millions of people know everything about how they live. they can still show us that truer part if they want, but only on their own terms–through photos and very brief or occasional filming,,, whatever they want to do basically. but they are setting the expectation and standard from the get go that that portion of the house is theirs. and this speaks volumes to me. it’s such an immense show of commitment to their relationship and to their future–it shows that their life together (their personal life, not their professional one) is something that they think needs to be protected and nurtured and cherished and everything about that is so lovely <3  at the same time they have gone to great lengths to also ensure that we feel comfortable with this change–they’re making sure that their filming locations are set up in ways that we are familiar with, utilizing a lot of the decor and tidbits that we’ve grown to love and that also mean a lot to them. they’re not filming in some sterile location that is stripped of everything personalized and human. things like the sofa crease and the muse poster and phil’s bedspread and whatnot–items that were originally bought bc they meant something to dan and phil but that eventually also took on great meaning to the audience–those things will still form the backdrops to the content they make. but upstairs they’re giving themselves the chance to fill a new space with presumably new things and new memories that are all for them. i don’t know how anyone could think about that and not just feel a little bit faint about how much dnp clearly value each other and this life that they share. it’s enough to make my head spin haha :) i’m so happy for them, and so content when i think about the peace and promise that this move might be bringing to their lives.

Daddy Issues

Pairing: JungKook & Reader

Genre: Smut, Fluff, Angst

Summary: A top student, marks always high. College was not a dream for her…Except she didn’t have enough money. Her parents never earned much so they literally took care of themselves. Her boss acting as a dick towards her she quited her job. Even though she had no idea what she let herself into this was her only option.

Keep reading

° ✧ GOTHAM PROMPTS.

triggers apply. mentions of death, murder and crime and offensive terms.

❛  You can’t have organized crime without law and order.
❛ You make a life of crime sound very noble.
❛ I love this city, and I see it going to hell. 
❛ You want me to keep quiet about all this?
❛ You want to say that a little louder? Not everybody heard.
❛ You’re just a little sinner like the rest of us.
❛ You can’t go around killing priests. At least not in public.
❛ The city’s sick. Sick in a way I hadn’t realized.
❛ I should put a bullet in your head right now.
❛ They will always hide the truth from you, but not me! 
❛ Gotham’s golden rule, no heroes.
❛ When you know what a man loves, you know what can kill him.
❛ So what is your play? I mean, you got one, right?
❛ We’re gonna be dead in the streets in time for the evening edition.
❛ We have unfinished business.
❛ Hit me, and I’ll let you kiss me.
❛ You know I’d bring you back here in a second…if I could.
❛ That’s my name. I’m not sure about “famous.”
❛ A simple phone call would resolve things, I’m sure.
❛ Only a man from a lunatic asylum would say that. 
❛ You’re like a human roller coaster, except you only go down.
❛ It’s a cupcake with a live bullet sticking out of it.
❛ I don’t got a thing for nobody. My thing is for me.
❛ The more you cut me, the bigger I grow. What am I?
❛ You notice I don’t ask you about your love life.
❛ I figured better here than sleeping on the street.
❛ Get your things. I’m taking you someplace safe.
❛ Is this… are you asking me a riddle?
❛ The poor have it, the rich need it, and if you eat it you’ll die.
❛ We’re all standing on the abyss, paralyzed by fear.
❛ Three dates, and I still haven’t been to your apartment.
❛ Perhaps it’s not our friends but… our enemies that define us.
❛ I’m just like the phoenix. I’ll just rise again and again and again.
❛ What can I say? You had me at homicide.
❛ Why would you do that? Why’d you even say that?
❛ I do like that you think of me as a loved one.
❛ Still looking for clues, sir? Or just breaking stuff?
❛ I’m trying to protect you. I’m trying to keep you safe.
❛ What have you done? Chop up your mommy?
❛ There’s nothing more contagious than laughter!
❛ That was strangely pleasant. Do it again.
❛ Hey, you’re psychic. So, tell me, do I kill?
  ❛ Your legacy will be death and madness.
❛ Every evil bastard in the world was “just a kid” once.
❛ Crime unpunished is a crime in itself.
❛ Anyone who doesn’t wanna get shot, raise your hands!
❛ What good’s family if you’re a slave?
❛ Who cares if you’re free? What good’s freedom if you’re alone?
❛ You don’t have the stomach to kill me yourself? 
❛ I don’t like this any more than you, but it is the only way.
❛ What sickness? I’m not sick.
❛ Oh, please, that is such a ridiculous cliché…
❛ I’m not a criminal, you know. I’m just…insane.
❛ Come on, pull the damn trigger!
❛ I’m going out there, with or without you.
❛ That’s exactly what an insane person would say!
❛ I could tell you, but then I would have to lobotomize you.
❛ Why didn’t you kill me? I would’ve killed you in an instant. 
❛ I think maybe you’re not cut out for this after all.
❛ There’s something between us. You have to see that.
❛ Well, how would you ever know if you don’t give it a try?
❛ You don’t have any whiskey, do you?
❛ We’ll contact you when the time is right. Enjoy your evening.
❛ Focus on the good you can do, that’s what counts.
❛ The badge holds expectations. People want a hero, and I’m not.
❛ The only question is, where do you stand?
❛ Oh my God, you guys are a couple?
❛ If I’m right, we can have way more than vengeance. 
❛ This is just a classic case of wrong place, wrong time. 
❛ Damn you for telling me this now!
❛ You seep into people’s lives until you destroy them.
❛ I know I’ve been dead, but doesn’t that sound a little crazy to you?
❛ And when morning comes, you too shall be reborn.
❛ Leave it to death to give you a whole new perspective on life. 
❛ Don’t ever touch me again or tell me what to do.
❛ You won’t see me coming, and you won’t feel a thing.
❛ I got plenty of darkness inside me, I just don’t dwell on it.
❛ I destroy everything and everyone around me.
❛ You want revenge, kill yourself.

if you don’t understand why people are laughing at the rich kids on their “luxury” glamping trip in the bahamas, you’ve never lived off bread and ramen for months, where cheese and *gasp* salad would be luxuries you couldn’t dream of. you’ve never had less than $12k a YEAR in wages, or a third of that in meager benefits when you lost your job. you’ve never been homeless. i am so sick of hearing it “have sympathy for the kids they’re going through actual suffering.” I have gone through actual suffering, damn it. And the US embassy didn’t do jack shit to get me home.
just please, if you don’t understand the glee we feel, you might be privileged and not realize it.

like, we’re not heartless. we actually know how they feel in that moment. the difference, is they get to escape that island and we poor people, our lives, metaphorically is that island (or like literally in the case of poor natives of the Bahamas). they get to react like morons and steal each other’s shit, fight over food and set things on fire? whereas poor people don’t get to react wildly, we’re expected to carry on, tighten our belts and paste on a smile. Also we tend to help each other and share resources in rough situations.
Headspace

MASTERLIST

Word count: 2,981

From y/n: Shits going down again…

From Shawn: How bad is it?

From y/n: It’s ‘I’m in my room crying again’ kinda bad…

From Shawn: Just hang on, I’m coming to get you

Keep reading

SM is not appreciating Lay enough. Please repost.

I want more people to see this. Please repost. People need to see what Lay, Zhang Yixing, has done.

I was just watching EXO Monster music video, the Chinese version. A lot of people were saying Lay wasn’t getting enough lines in M versions and how it’s a Chinese song where the Chinese get two lines. Then you get comments like:

“Well everyone needs to remember that everyone has their designated roles in the group. Lay has improved greatly in terms of singing, and he is indeed better than he used to be, but he came to SM as a dancer. Just because he’s Chinese does not mean he has the right to all the lines.“

“Maybe Lay’s voice didn’t suit some lines within the song in comparison to the other members.“

“The problem is that he can’t sing as well as baek and kyungie.”

“…because LAY has too much personal activities…”

I don’t even want to continue.

People keep saying ‘Why do Chinese members keep leaving’ and how Chinese people always ‘leave for money’. Look, Lay is here staying in the group and not going for the money and supporting his brothers, he is keeping to his words ‘we are one’. Yes, it’s true that Lay has his own personal studio in China and is doing variety shows and dramas in China but he still has to give SM a big part of his income. Don’t know whether it’s 100% accurate but according to a website in China, half of Yixing’s personal studio staff was employed by SM and Yixing has to give 70% of his income to SM. Well, 30% of is income is actually a lot considering how well he’s doing in China but bare in mind Yixing is the one doing all the work and he has to give SM 70% of it. 


Lay has make his way into the Chinese market and had gotten so popular recently starring in variety shows like Go Fighting and honestly, he can do so much better and so much more if he left the group and focus on his career in China but is he leaving? No. He’s not leaving. The reason why Chinese members keep leaving is because of this. This is a song in Mandarin and a Chinese members get two lines. TWO FUCKING LINES. Kris and Tao used to get one lines or two lines in songs and maybe not even have a proper line in K versions. If you search Kris voice on YouTube, someone made a compilation of his solo lines from MAMA to Overdose (M and K version included) you would find that he only had 8.33 minutes overall. And for Tao, he only got 4 minutes. There is a reason why members want to seek for more opportunities and want be able to do more. There are members like Sehun where all his lines were E-X-O (well he did have more lines in Love Me Right and recent songs).

How do you expect them to still stay when people like Kris who trained for 7 years, not knowing whether he’s going to debut and when he does, he get two lines in a song(except raps) and would always be placed at the back while performing live. He was originally supposed to debut after training for 3 years but the date got pushed back and SM told him, ‘Just wait another year.’ Another year became two years, three years, four years. He had became the foreign trainee who has trained for the longest time in SM. How do you expect him to still stay? I don’t even want to go into how Kris’s body conditions were and how he has serious problems with his body. See how well Kris doing in China and even starred in Hollywood films, would he be doing that if he stayed? 

Back to Lay. I hate it when people say stuff like “Lay only focus on his career in China and doesn’t even do EXO stuff anymore.” Excuse me, how dare you say that. Yes, Yixing did spend a lot of time in China filming and doing variety shows but he’s trying so hard to keep up with both EXO and himself. Let me tell you Lay’s schedule and after this you wouldn’t dare say he doesn’t try. 

This is his schedule for the past two months. 

May

5th-Beijing to Gimpo

9th-Incheon to Shanghai

13th-Back to Korea

18th-Incheon to Beijing

19th-<To Be A Better Man> Conference

20th-Beijing to Seoul

23th-Incheon to Xiamen

25th-Xiamen to Shanghai

28th-Hongqiao to Seoul

June

5th-Seoul to Shanghai

6th-<Old Nine Gates> Conference

6th-Premiere of <To Be A Better Man>

7th-Back to Korea

8th-EXO comeback showcase

This was his schedule for the past two months. How dare you say that Yixing is not doing enough EXO stuff. Not a normal person can bear with the stress and tiredness flying almost every two days. Why do you think he keeps flying back to Korea? He could have stayed in China since he has so many conference to go to. It’s because EXO comeback has a lot of planning and practicing to do. If he has ‘given in to money’ like some people like to say, why do you think Yixing has given up his time for resting and flying back and forth China and Korea. If he has really ‘given in to money’ why shouldn’t he just leave? Why does he keeps mentioning EXO in China? At the end of interviews he would always tell people to not only support him but also EXO. He doesn’t need to do any of that. He really don’t. He could’ve just left and continue what he’s doing in China. But he keeps his promises. He promised to stay with the members, he promised to not leave, he promised to prove that Chinese people are trustworthy. 

You can’t judge Yixing if you haven’t tied sandbags to your body to practice dancing for almost two years just because you think your dancing wasn’t going anywhere, it was to a point where he can’t even stand up because of the damages he has done to his waist. You can’t judge Yixing if you haven’t seen the amount of time he puts into making a ‘better Zhang Yixing’. You can’t judge Yixing if you haven’t had a cramping leg but still managed to finished a short interview and the whole Love Me Right choreography and immediately collapsed to the ground after the performance. These are all happening when people call him names like “attention seeking bitch”. He is still standing. He doesn’t deserve all this. He doesn’t even to work half as hard but chose to because he wants to prove to all those people who judged him, who attacks him, who call him names. If you haven’t gone through what Yixing has gone through, what gives you the right to judge him? 

“Hope that I will be able to let the others see, everything of Zhang Yixing is good, only then I feel it’s really amazing. Let the others see he result, the process ins’t really that important.”-ZhangYixing 

If you’re judging him or has judged him, think about whether you’ll be able to go through all this and still put on a smile for everyone.

Zhang Yixing is so hardworking and is such an amazing human being. SM need to change, and SM need to appreciate the effort Yixing is putting into EXO. 

We’ve already lost three members, we couldn’t afford to lose more.

anonymous asked:

Any chance of a few good modern au fic recs for this piece of enjoltaire trash?

oh I’m sure I could think of a few… *winks with both eyes at the same time*
(also, here’s a list I made from a while back of some good e/R fics!)

Still the One by kjack89

Enjolras and Grantaire’s 50th wedding anniversary.

I don’t want to give it away, so I’m just going to say you should read it. Seriously

Word Count: 3,438

Oblivious by kjack89

The trouble with approaching your relationship the same way you approached your at-times contentious friendship is that apparently, no one realizes you’re actually dating. Or else Enjolras and Grantaire just have the absolute most oblivious of friends.

Or both.

I’m so used to the “everyone except Enjolras and Grantaire knows they like each other” trope, so this one was really fun to read!

Word Count: 4,567

flightless bird by sarahyyy

Combeferre grins. “How long did you wait before you called me?”

There is a short pause. “Two minutes?” Grantaire says, and Combeferre can’t help but to huff out a laugh. “He said three hours!” Grantaire says defensively.

“He’s fine,” Combeferre says, shaking his head in amusement. “He’ll call. He always calls.”

Damn….it’s the slight ambiguity at the end that gets me… (not to be read if you’re in the mood for fluff!! You might cry!!)

Word Count: 1,883

Years Since It’s Been Clear by lady_ragnell

Grantaire really doesn’t expect Enjolras to force him to move in with him when he hears how shitty Grantaire’s apartment is. And he definitely doesn’t expect Enjolras to want him to stay, or how easy it turns out to be, or the way Enjolras has a habit of doing his studying in the sunshine on the living room floor …

Yeah, he may be in some trouble.

Everything. Everything about this. SO GOOD (ps there’s some smut at the very end, just in case you’re not into that)

Word Count: 10,726

Of Roommates And Hallways by madlyie 

Prompt: “we both got kicked out of our rooms because our roommates are having sex so now we’re standing in the hallway avoiding each other” au

Enjolras learns that the guy from apartment No. 27 is much more talkative than a closed door.

Ok this is super frickin cute and the ending is just perfect. 11/10

Word Count: 1,376

I’ll be your Shelter, I’ll be your Storm by missandrogyny

Just pay me back with one thousand kisses.

Fluff! So much fluff! Good things and happy thoughts!

Word Count: 5,532

One Hundred Ways to Say “I Love You” by the_sky_is_forever

In which Grantaire and Enjolras take a very long time to actually say those three special words, but if you pay attention, the words are there.

Love love love love love. I felt super content (in an “I’m wrapped up in a warm blanket sitting in front of a fire on a cold winter’s day” way) after reading this and honestly that’s one of the best feelings to have after reading a fic (for me personally)

Word Count: 16,484

nothing alike by nightswatch

Enjolras comes across a guy who’s trying to steal his car. Except that he’s not actually stealing his car.

The second hand embarrassment is real (I may or may not have buried my face in a blanket while reading this)

Word Count: 2,023

We’re All Stories, In The End by theglitterati

Les Amis discover fanfiction. About themselves.

I had to put this one on here just for fun because I was cackling when I read it

Word Count: 2,210

Ice Ice Baby by sigh_no_more

In the almost four years that Enjolras had known his friends, he always managed to avoid ice skating with them. This was very purposeful. It had to be. After all, they lived in the Northeast, so plenty of opportunities arose for him to go ice skating. He just never took advantage of them. Because Enjolras had a secret. A dark, terrible secret.

Given how nosy and internet savvy his friends were, it was kind of a miracle that only Combeferre and Courfeyrac knew about his past.

But it was time.

(Or the Amis go ice-skating and find out a surprising truth about Enjolras.)

Ok I had to include this one on here too because when I was rereading it just now, it kinda reminded me of Yuri on Ice and that made me happy sooo :)

Word Count: 2,945

An Apology

Hi.

In early March, a former friend, Klaus, who worked with me on videos for my channel, put a ‘callout post’ on Tumblr about me. The post contains logs of a conversation we had after he came out to me that another friend had made him feel unsafe in skype chats in late 2011.

I handled this very poorly. I encourage you to read the logs Klaus has posted. [EDIT: You can find the post here. I originally did not link to it, because I was worried people would dogpile him, but on reflection if I’m saying you should read them it’s a mistake not to make them available, and I do not want to hide what I wrote.]

I believe that there is a proper way to react when a person approaches you with a story like the one he came to me with. It is always important to be kind to people who trust you when they tell you they feel hurt. When this happened, I failed to do this. Because I knew the person he was talking about, and I had been there at the time for many of the conversations Klaus had been referring to, I immediately went about investigating whether or not the claim was true. My first real response to Klaus opening up to me about his fears was to tell him that I doubted him, and to question if he was sure he was remembering things properly.

This behaviour was wrong. I had the opportunity to respond with care and understanding and instead my first instinct was to try to ‘check the facts’. This is not a kind instinct, and it is not a good way of treating anyone, especially a friend.

I write from a position of privilege. I try my best to be a good person and see things from a worthwhile perspective, but when it comes down to it I am a straight white man living in a very secluded part of the UK where most people aren’t affected by the worst of the problems I often talk about. I try to criticise the exact perspective this can engender, but when this happened I didn’t even notice I was acting it out myself. I failed to be compassionate to a friend who was confiding in me. Even if everything Klaus had said had been untrue, it was still nothing short of cruel to respond the way I did.

I want to be a good ally and stand up for people who have been hurt, and I very clearly still have a lot to learn from others. I wish I hadn’t needed to learn this lesson at all in the first place. I know I have disappointed some people. I recently reached out to my audience, asking people who have problems with aspects of my work to get in touch and tell me what they feel I should do differently, and I want to reaffirm that I read all of the messages that are sent to me, and take them seriously. I lost a very good friend, someone who was and still is important to me, because I failed to live up to the principles I believe in, and I do not want that to hurt anyone like that again.

A couple of other members of the community have shared the callout post and their disappointment with what I wrote. I am heartened by this behaviour –it’s good that people in our little corner of the internet are willing to criticise people’s actions, especially when they otherwise agree with them or like their work or share their goals, and especially when that person is me. This is exactly the sort of community I want to be a part of, and I hope I can do right by it in my work.

I’ve made a lot of mistakes in my life, and how I dealt with Klaus’ feelings is a big one. I was a bad friend to someone who deserved to be treated better, and can never undo that – but I can, and will, do better in the future.

Thank you for taking the time to read this. I can never apologise enough to Klaus. I don’t expect him to forgive me. His post relates that he shared this story because he wants me to do better in the future, and to grow as a person, and at the very least I hope it’s clear that I want to live up to his, and your, expectations for me.