i expect nothing less than special ~

All I Ask Of You

A @mlsecretsanta​ gift for @miraculouspaon​! Some fluffly Marichat for you!

Have a Happy Holliday!

NOTE: This fic includes songs and lyrics from various musicals, so scattered throughout are links to youtube videos for those songs. Enjoy!

Chat Noir loves musicals.

It really shouldn’t surprise me. Cats exists, of course he loves musicals. After he found out I’m into musicals, it’s all he talks about when we’re on patrol. But I can’t even remember how we got on the subject. I think I was humming a few bars of ‘76 Trombones’ from The Music Man one day and he recognized it instantly. He started talking about various musicals he’d seen, either live or recorded, musicals he wanted to see (Hamilton and The Lion King topped the list), and his favorite songs from each. Which leads me to my second discovery.

Chat Noir has a beautiful voice.

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top ten frat aus

1. Have You Coming Back Again by whoknows (31k)

It’s five o’clock in the morning. Louis has a lecture at half eight. He could be using this time to study or to do his readings or to go to the gym, but - well. He doesn’t have any exams coming up, he’s not going to his seminar today anyway and he hates the gym.

Instead he’s using this time to fuck with Harry Styles’ poor little brain.

Louis jogs across the street and jabs the key into the car door. It opens easily, not that he was expecting anything else. He copied the key for a reason, after all.

He’s got Harry’s schedule memorized, more because the guy keeps following him around than anything, so he doesn’t bother looking around before climbing behind the wheel and setting his bag on the passenger seat. It’s a Monday, which means that Harry doesn’t even get out of bed before noon unless he’s planning on harassing Louis.

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Request: Conspiracy

Request: Hi! Request?Crowleyxreader pls!the reader is extremely smart on all things supernatural. Crowley hears of this and decides visits her only to end up saving her from demons who want to kill her since she knew too much. He then convinces her to work for him~Lots of time passes and they have grown close. Crowley goes to check up on some info he asked of her but finds her sleeping on a book. Glasses crooked, hair messy, and he falls in love. She then wakes up w/Crowley starring and lots of fluff!

Word Count: 1,816

This one’s really quite cute – thank you! Have a lovely day!<3

“No, no, I need you to listen to me!” You insist, dropping your pen on the notebook forcefully, “Silver will do nothing but get you killed. It has to be evergreen wood, alright?”

The answer comes trickling back and you groan, raking a hand through your hair.

“Listen up, don’t move. You haven’t been hunting long enough to deal with this shit, alright? Hang tight and I’ll send someone to help you out.”

Since old Bobby Singer died about a year ago, you’ve become a primary contact for dozens of new and struggling hunters. You don’t mind, but it’s become a massive workload – new and terrible things keep invading the planet and it’s your job to figure out what they are and how to stop them. While you don’t hunt, per se, you probably know more about what’s out there than any hunter still alive today.

You call up a hunter you know who’ll be able to help out the poor kid at the other end, and he promises he’ll be there by tonight. You spend some time clearing up your workspace and returning some books to their shelves. You’ve been working for less than a minute when there’s a knock at the door, startling you slightly – you weren’t expecting anyone today, and you usually get a call in advance of a visitor.

You peer through the little hole on your door to see a pair of guys – nothing special. You’re not even sure if they’re hunters. You open the door, offering a smile.

“Can I help you guys?” You ask, wrapping your cardigan tighter around yourself against the cool autumn air. One of them smiles.

“Are you Y/N Y/L/N?” He asks, sounding almost nervous. You nod, leaning against the door.

“Who’s asking?”

“We’re hunters,” The other one explains, “We need help.”

You’re not entirely sure about them, but they got past the devil’s trap on your gateway and the holy water sprinkler system, so you figure you’re in the clear. You open the door a little further and let them in. They look around your sitting room, littered with books and papers and shelves, and share a look with one another. One nods minutely – you wouldn’t have picked it up, if you weren’t already suspicious of these men.

“What did you say your names were? I didn’t catch them.” You say, gesturing for them to sit down. They don’t, however, only serving to heighten your suspicion.

“We didn’t.” One shrugs, before a smirk lands on his face. You move just a split second before he does, stepping to the side just as he lunges at you. His friend’s eyes flash a deep black and you shriek, darting behind the couch to attempt to ward them off – you have an angel blade in here somewhere, donated by an old friend, but in all the mess and chaos you can’t remember where you put it. You freeze for a moment, trying to think, but before you can churn out so much as one idea you’ve been flung against the wall, slamming into a shelf. The whole lot comes tumbling down, books cascading down on your already injured body. You let out a weak cry for help – but it does no good, as the demons advance on you with wickedly sharp blades. You close your eyes and wait for the blow, fear churning your stomach.

The blow never comes. After a few moments of silence, you hear a roar of agony that, when you look up, comes from the thick black smoke whirling around your ceiling. The two meatsuits fall to the floor, dead as they come. Tentatively, you prop yourself up, pressing a hand to your aching ribs.

Something must have helped you there.

“Hello, love,” Your thoughts are answered instantly, and someone bends down in front of you. The man helps you up and deposits you on your couch, glancing you over, “Did they hurt you?”

“Only my pride.” You shake your head, smiling slightly, “Thank you.”

“Don’t mention it. Some demons are idiots.” He chuckles kindly, “You’re Y/N, correct?”

You nod, “That’s me. And you are…?”

“Crowley. King of Hell.” He introduces himself, waiting for your recoil and probably, attack. You merely regard him curiously, narrowing your eyes almost as if you don’t believe him.

“Alright, then,” You say softly, “In that case, what do you want?”

“You’re not going to attack me?” He frowns in confusion, “I’m not complaining, of course, but…”

“You just saved my life.” You roll your eyes at him, “You wouldn’t have done that if you didn’t want something out of me – not you.” You’re not harsh or hostile, but matter-of-fact. That, in itself, intrigues him further, causing a smile to quirk at the edges of his lips.

“You’re not wrong,” He admits, taking a seat beside you, “I’ve heard a lot about you, Y/N, I know what you do, and how good you are it. If you’d be willing to, I’d like you to work for me.”

“To work for you?” You stare at him incredulously, “Look, I’m not sure if you’ve had a bump to the head but-“

“I get it, I get it. Demon, hunter, right. But really, this arrangement would be to your benefit.” He explains, “You’d be protected from all demons under my control. No other hunters have to know. I just need someone to research, and, well… demons aren’t as well-suited to books as you’d think.”

You narrow your eyes unsurely, and he realises he’s seriously going to have to sweeten the deal.

“Hell’s library is better than the Ancient Library of Alexandria.”



“Y/N? Are you here?” You hear the voice calling from the doorway and you climb down the ladder, tucking the book under your arm.

“Right here, just a sec!” You call back, jumping from the third rung and bouncing back up, heading for the end of the row, “I can never get over how huge this place is.”

“Well, you haven’t gotten lost yet.” Crowley chuckles, stepping into the huge room. The glass roof lights the room amazingly, the crystal lamps reflecting little rainbows over the room. It’s the most extravagant room you’ve ever worked in, but you love it. The thousands and thousands of books have given it a papery smell, which you love.

“That’s a miracle in itself. How are you doing?” You ask, placing the heavy volume down on the mahogany desk. Crowley shrugs.

“It’s easy to get sick of demons. Horrible, vapid, insipid creatu-“ He sees the look you’re giving him and he laughs aloud, “Minus myself, of course.”

“Of course.” You agree softly, taking a seat. He joins you, looking over your notes.

“You’re making quick progress on this,” Crowley remarks, “As impressive as always, Y/L/N.”

“It’s been a year. You’d think you’d learn to stop gawking.” You grin, nudging him in the arm, “I should be done by tonight. Everything you wanted.”

“Everything?!” You’d been asked to gather lore on a certain kind of demon Crowley was interested in creating, and the books had basically spit the information right at you. You laugh nodding.

“Sure. I can give you the notes I have now, if you like.”

“I’ll let you keep them for now, I think.” He looks at the pile of notes on the table – you’ve always given him your results verbally in the past, and by the amount of writing he sees, he’s not enthusiastic for that to change. You laugh, shooting him an affectionate smile as you pull the book open.

“In that case, I’d better get a move on. Care to hang around?”

He looks conflicted for a moment – you’re a genuinely lovely person and he enjoys spending time around you, but he has duties. Eventually, he pulls himself away.

“No, love, I’d better go. I’ll be back tonight, though.”

“You’d better be!” You call after his retreating form and he chuckles, disappearing out of the huge door.


“Y/N?” He calls out your name over the din of rain pouring down on the glass roof, “Are you in here?”

Of course, you’d never be anywhere else, but when he slips through the heavy wooden door, you don’t answer him with your bright chirps as you usually would. He steps into the library, finding the desk where you usually work.

You’re there, sleeping soundly atop a dusty old tome. Your messy bun has flopped over haphazardly and your glasses are crooked on your sleeping face. He’s never seen you look so peaceful and, quite frankly, adorable.

Right then and there, in that moment, with the rain beating down over his head and your gentle breathing and peaceful smile, the King of Hell falls in love. The demon devoting his whole afterlife to being rotten, to being the worst of the worst and the best at being the worst, falls head-over-heels in love with a hunter-allied sweetheart with a lust for knowledge.

He doesn’t have much time to muse on this new feeling of warmth in his chest as you crack an eye open and look up at him, sleep blurring your vision but not so much that you don’t realise that he’s staring right at you.

“See something you like?” You ask softly, straightening your back slowly. A small groan falls from your lips as your stiff joints protest the movement – you’ve been asleep for the better part of three hours.

“Huh- I- Uh-“ Crowley stammers, looking anywhere but you. The peal of laughter that comes from you a moment later sends relief flooding through him, and he smiles.

“Don’t worry about it, sugar.” You grin, closing the book, “I got that information you wanted.”

“Don’t worry about that.” He says hurriedly, “Have you been getting enough sleep?”

When you don’t answer, he narrows his eyes at you suspiciously.

“Why haven’t you been sleeping properly?”

“I wanted to get this information to you quickly.” You admit, “So I just… skipped out on a couple hours. Not a huge deal.”

He feels a sudden anger in his stomach – not at you, but at himself. Had he really been so forceful with his request that you’re depriving yourself of sleep to fulfil it? You see his thought train, though, and roll your eyes at him.

“I’m going to bed now, genius. It’s alright, I did it because I wanted to – since when did you order me around, anyway?”

He chuckles, “I suppose you’re right. Promise me you’ll get some sleep, Y/N.”

“I promise.” You reach for his hand and link your pinky with his in a childish gesture of commitment, before leaning in and pressing a light kiss to his cheek, “G’night, your majesty.” You say cheekily, releasing his hand and flouncing off to your room. He stares after you, his eyes like saucers and his face aflame. You pause in the doorway, shooting him a playful wink before disappearing off.

The Importance of SessRin and Why Kikyo is Integral to InuKag

As a fan re-entering into the Inuyasha fandom, and a new member of the SessRin fandom, I feel it’s necessary to explain just why exactly SessRin is so important for Sesshomaru’s character development, and why Kikyo is vitally important to InuKag’s story, not to mention, creates a poetic aesthetic to the pairing. 

First thing’s first, I want to start with SessRin. This, while being a popular ship, is also a controversial one, with one half of the pairing being a child during the canon timeline. I want to begin my explanation with: during the canon timeline, they are not romantic love interests. 

Do not be confused; I ship these two together romantically. However, while Rin is a child in Sesshomaru’s care, they are comrades with a strong bond. They have a spiritual bond that is evident, but romance has nothing to do with it in the early stages of their relationship. I believe it is safe to say that Sesshomaru does not understand what love is (any form of it). He’s never experienced selflessness or kindness. As a demon, he was lead to believe strength and nobility is one’s only true worth. He held fast to this belief, and he grew into a hateful, stuck-up man who was severely lacking in compassion, especially towards mortals. 

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Love Autopsy

Rated: PG

Summary: Mulder writes Scully a frustrated letter

Dear Scully,

I haven’t slept since you left.  I expected the old ‘it’s not you it’s me’ and ‘we should just be friends’ adages when you said you wanted to talk, but I had hoped to convince you otherwise.  I don’t like way things ended last night.  I don’t like that I didn’t get a say in this.  As I sit here, I find that I am unable to dismiss this as easily as you seem to have done.

It was not the first time I told you that I loved you, so why would you think I’m mistaken?  You said it wasn’t you I loved, but an idea of you that didn’t really exist.  I don’t even know how to argue with that because who am I to tell you who you are?  But who are you to tell me how I see you?

Stop reading now if you can’t hear what I have to say.  I’m going try to dissect this as you would and put it into terms you’ll understand.  If, in the end, you come to a separate conclusion than I, I expect nothing less than a detailed report highlighting exactly where it is I’m wrong.

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anonymous asked:

can you describe your reaction to getting admitted into stanford/checking your application status? i'm excited to hear about it!

aww this is so cute! <3 i actually do have a reaction video but it’s very ugly and lame so i’m not going to show it here, but BASICALLY how this went was that i was really open that i applied to stanford early. like pretty much everyone from my school knew and i had no problem talking about it, everyone on here knew, my extended family knew, it was just common knowledge. it was also common knowledge to me that i would get rejected from stanford and i was pretty chill about it because i was like hey i’ll be applying to 13 other schools, i can’t possibly get rejected from all of them (like i’d also done umich EA and i mean you can never be sure about these things but i knew i had a solid shot) but whenever someone asked “oh libby, where did you apply early?” the answer was never “stanford,” it was always “stanford, but i’m going to be rejected.” it was like one of those psychiatric tests where your shrink says a word and you have to respond in a fraction of a second, if you said stanford i’d have said rejection. i just knew it. i would say it to myself every day so i wouldn’t get my hopes up. because stanford, even though i was a legacy with an uncommon major, is still pretty much impossible, even EA as it’s still only around 10% admission. and i knew that i was okay but i wasn’t special. and i did not even allow myself to consider the alternative. i am the quintessential optimistic pessimist and i expect the worst for every situation i’m into because i know i’m either right or i’ll be nothing less than ecstatic if i’m wrong. but i didn’t think about being wrong, with stanford. i knew what they needed and i knew who i was and i knew (and i know) that those things would never be congruent.

so even though i consider myself a rational person, even though i wove my feelings into a life jacket to keep me afloat during those dark december days, there’s nothing quite like getting your first college decision. sure, i’d been admitted to rutgers back in october, but stanford was different. stanford was my first complete application and stanford was around the same time as everyone i knew was hearing back about their decisions, and stanford was lovely and warm and prestigious and thousands of miles away from home and stanford was a game-changer. and i could say a rejection from stanford wouldn’t affect me and to be honest, in the big scheme of things it wouldn’t, but i knew i would be hurt by it. i liked my essays and i had done well in high school and that should count for something, shouldn’t it? i wasn’t ready to be told that i wasn’t enough. not that early, anyway. my stomach ached the entire day at school. i couldn’t stop shaking, i wore my lucky bracelet and when i spoke my words seemed like they came from someone else because i wasn’t really present, my heart and mind and soul were all in the future, floating somewhere around 5:00 p.m. with that email in my inbox. and i got home and tried to distract myself by talking to people and my mom bought me a hot chocolate from panera (my favorite, with the chocolate chip marshmallows) that i couldn’t stomach and she said “everyone loves you no matter what” and i said “i know” but i was still scared and uncertain and love is a cushion but it’s not a replacement. and 4:59 came faster than expected and i recorded my reaction video wearing a yale sweatshirt underneath my stanford sweatshirt (it’s a metaphor) and i didn’t put on any makeup. why bother? it’s not like anyone was going to see the video.

i began to record, my words in a rush, explaining that i had applied to stanford university restrictive early action class of 2018 and that at the moment i could see the unread email in my inbox that would, good news or bad, have an effect on the next four years of my life but goddammit i was just going to get it over with and look and i closed my eyes and on the inside of my eyelids i saw “we regret to inform you…” and my shaking fingers clicked the email and i saw my stanford ID number and underneath the word “congratulations” and i screamed. i literally screamed and my mouth went wide as a fish’s and i kept saying “no, no, no, no” because this was a mistake, they sent me the wrong email, i was going to get a follow-up saying they’d accidentally admitted severely unqualified applicants and sorry about the misunderstanding!! because who was i? i was seventeen years old, looked thirteen, really, with a messy room and split ends, someone who didn’t listen in calculus class and spent far too much time playing oregon trail and candy crush, someone who by a mixture of choice and circumstance spent most of her time alone and who didn’t even know what she wanted, really, so she never ended up doing much of anything. i said “this is a mistake.” i said “i’m not—” but that was a sentence i couldn’t finish because there were way too many options that could fill in that blank. i called my mom in and she screamed and grabbed the phone and called every relative i had and a couple of my friends had texted me so i texted them back, told them the good news, and right after my decision i put on my snapchat story, in tears, basically, a video of me half-screaming “I GOT INTO STANFORD” because at the time it didn’t seem obnoxious but rather me falling down the rabbit hole and desperately searching for a foothold. i needed to take this strange reality and share it with whoever i could just for affirmation that this is real life!! this is not a dream!! this is not a drill either, this is my life and i posted it on here and i was videochatting with some appblr friends after i’d told them the news and i think i was crying a little bit but god bless them for being my anchors and i posted a status on facebook an hour later after i hadn’t been rescinded and my two best friends took me out to see frozen and the entire time i kept checking my email because people were commenting and liking my facebook status and i felt this haze around me like nothing was real and i kept my stanford sweatshirt on and i didn’t take it off and i felt so happy i could burst into light and i could float away like a bird and i screenshotted that email and i still have the picture because i have never been happier, i don’t think.

there’s something to be said for a moment that completely sweeps you off your feet and i know it’s only a dumb college decision but it was the strangest reality check i have ever been a part of and all those shitty thoughts i have had about myself, things that could fill volumes of an encyclopedia, were things i had to rethink and you should never let anything determine your worth but there’s something so nice about validation, especially when you least expect it. and people who i thought were my safety nets were actually my trampolines, propelling me higher and higher and when i came back to school people were so lovely and saying “if it had to be anyone, i’m glad it was you” and “you deserve it more than anyone” and i was completely taken aback that such kind thoughts were directed towards me but it was so wonderful. and it was friday the 13th but it was the luckiest day of my life and i don’t think i’ll ever truly get over it, even though the sun always sets eventually and there are days when the clouds mar my sky and even though sometimes i feel like i’m treading water in an endless ocean, trying desperately to stay afloat i use that day as a raft because it reminds me that amazing things have happened, that i have contributed to something larger than me and that i am integral into shaping my own future and even though i know there will be highs and lows in the days to come i cannot ever forget a day like that. it amazes me more every time i think about it. i hold onto it because i can’t bear to let it go.

Aliya's IG interview (corrected)

Here’s Aliya’s IG interview plus another one I found (on her VK site, CORRECTION: apparently they’re the same thing) I tried to make the most of Google Translator so I’m positive it isn’t perfect. Let me know if something is wrong. It’s kinda old, presumably from before Euros/end of last month. Thanks to whiptotriple for pointing out errors.


Andrei Rodionenko said that you’re not forced to participate in the upcoming Euros. Is it your personal decision then?

I really don’t know what to say. It only makes sense to compete when you are ready, so I’ll try to get to Sofia preparated and I will do my best if the team needs me. Although as it’s been said no one is indispensable.

After competing in Stuttgart in 2013,you stopped training for 1.5 months.(not sure of how to translate this part: “How gymnast in the past,I would have been terribly absent for such a long time.And you were not?”)

In February I resumed training. It took me 3-4 weeks to get back in shape. Competing at Nationals also helped me to get back in shape. The feeling of competition, the adrenaline, concentrating on new programs helps a lot.

When you’re not feeling quite fit,are you worried about your knee? Does it still bother you?

Sometimes it hurts a little bit but I don’t consider it “injured” anymore. Of course, I believed that I would succeed in my goal to recovery, as the doctor himself told me that it was possible. When I was not allowed to resume training, but I felt ready, it was hard.

Who or what kept you motivated to not give up?

I think my own great desire to stay “afloat”, and the fact that I understood what I was fighting for.

After Alexandrov left you, have you ever thought about “coaching yourself”?

Of course, but then I thought that I would have felt like an abandoned little kitten, and I came to the conclusion that that was not an option.

Why did you choose Raisa Ganina?

Raisa was always there for me. One way or another, all the coaches I had worked with were no longer around, but she was. Her human qualities played a huge part in my decision.

Ganina argues that between the two of you, you are the leader. Do you agree?

I do.

Is it ever viceversa?

Here’s how it happens with us: Raisa tells me that I have to do five sets on beam. I know that I don’t have the power to do so and that it’s useless, so I beg her for permission to only do three. Then sometimes, when I do three, I realize they’re not enough and that I have to do more.

And do you, in that case?

Depends on how I feel. After a serious injury, if I feel pain, I don’t, not even the lightest elements. I’d rather wait and do them one more time the next day.

I understand that you and your coach had nothing planned. How’s it possible?

This is what my mother taught me. Never plan anything. You can have a goal, but never look at it as if it’s already been achieved. I think it would be great if I could remain a top-level gymnast until the Olympics in 2016, but that isn’t certain. As life has shown me, not everything is planned to be fulfilled. If I had nothing in mind, nothing would crumble.

Are you thinking about becoming a coach?

In fact, just recently I was going to a different university, an oil and gas one (you know the Gubkin-smth one she had talked about I presume). But then I quit because I realized that trying to learn something so new, so great and different from what I know now required a lot of time and effort. Now I’m at the University Of Physical Culture. I’m considering becoming a coach in the future, but at least now I’m combining education and sport. In my new university I find it easier to follow my schedule. It’s nice to know that when I’m done with the sport, I will have education and at the same time I will be able to work as a coach, while scrutinizing and carefully choosing what I want to do in the future.

What is your opinion regarding athletes who continue to compete after having reached the peak of the Olympics?

I will stay only for as long as I can feel I can work “full force”. The moment I realize my results are no longer the same I will retire. Not being ready to compete and not being ready to do anything are two different things. In the latter case, that’s when you need to leave.

How will you know that this is the end?

By trying.

You say you don’t have any idols. What is this philosophy then, being yourself?

I just really don’t feel special.

But today you’re special: several people on FB and Twitter pretend to be you and create fake pages, you have many fanclubs and webpages devoted to you…

First of all, I have Instagram, but I keep it private. It would be very difficult to answer all messages, so I don’t have FB. Maybe that’s why I don’t feel pressure, because I only think about what I have to do and not about what people think of me.

Do you ever stop and reflect on yourself?

All the time. It’s not easy to compete at this level and not face someone’s expectations, including my own. To be honest, today at the training session I actually did so. I did nothing special for someone to call me an idol.

Gymnastics’ amount of popularity in Russia is less than it’d be deserved. Have you ever thought of going abroad and competing for another country?

No. I’m the kind of person who likes to be where everything is familiar and stable.

anonymous asked:

Did Vidcon gave iPads to Youtubers simply as a gift because you don't want to pay them a talent fee? Or was it from sponsors?

We had some extra money because we got more sponsorships than we expected, so we bought iPads for all the creators who were doing VidCon content to thank them for being so great. I know nothing about “talent fees” though. VidCon wouldn’t work if we had to pay creators. We had over 300 guest creators this year and I want to have more next year. A $500 iPad is one thing, but most YouTubers are worth much more than that. If we paid them what they were worth, the conference could never have so many special guests and we’d have to be far more discriminating and it would make VidCon way less diverse and less representative. 

Our goal is that the experience of VidCon is the real value VidCon provides to creators. I hope very much that creators continue to feel that way, because it’s the only reason VidCon is as cool and amazing as it is. The coolest thing about online media is how it has fractured fame, creating thousands of different communities around different creations. I want VidCon to be a force that embodies and encourages that diversification of media, and that means we have to have LOTS of guest creators, which also means we can pay none of them (unless we have $100,000 extra dollars for iPads because our sponsors were so enthusiastic this year.) 

Faking It was my mess. Why this show changed who I am.

I started this blog because I love television. But what made me really want to do it was a comedy show called Faking It. At that time, it was the show I loved the most, along with Haven and One Tree Hill. I created theories, recaps, commentary and what not, and I know that lately most of it is criticism, sometimes a lot of negativity too, but I won’t apologize for that. I know my sarcasm and salt lately either makes  people really hate me and my content or agree wholeheartedly with what I say, even if the manner is very harsh. But I appreciate anyone who understands that all of the criticism is this bad because I care. I always have. I wouldn’t have spent hours making content if I didn’t. I always cared about this show and it always mattered to me. And in light of the cancellation, I’d like to say a few things about it, about the good it did to me, personally.

This show made me stop being homophobic. I used to have very problematic views, but they never once belonged to me. I guess I was indirectly encouraged to feel certain things and have certain beliefs but they were never mine. I embraced them because I was young, I wanted to make sense of the world, I wanted to feel like I had an identity but it was never mine. I was never intolerant, I was never this person who preached, who imposed anyone the right definition of right and wrong - there isn’t one. I was just a girl who had to grow up and get educated before realizing the error of her ways, and Faking It did that for me. We grew together. This show educated me on LGBT issues and I didn’t even realize how it changed my life and my views but it did and for that I am very grateful. It made me see the world differently and I feel like television has that power to change our world. In so many ways, Faking It did that for me, it made me root for the amazing story of unconditional love that Karmy and Amy had because it stands for everything I believe true love should be.

This show also brought my story on television, but in a slightly different way. I’m not LGBT, I am a straight female, but I am Amy Raudenfeld in so many ways. She is one of the most relatable characters I’ve ever seen on TV and she’ll always have a special place in my heart. I lived her story, but I also lived Karma’s story. I fell in love with a real life Liam Booker and I grew up with this unhealthy vision of love and I felt that I was less, that I wasn’t worthy of someone I wanted, that he was more than I deserved and that made me terribly insecure.  I loved the way Amy does - with my whole heart, unconditionally, expecting nothing back. I saw my first love the way Karma saw Liam - as this ideal, when that was so terribly wrong and the show taught me that - that there is a difference between your idea of love and what love should be. 

Both of these characters are two sides of the same coin, and they are both sides of me. I’ll miss them and while I think the show wasted a lot of potential, it still helped me in so many ways. It also inspired me to start writing again. I want to write a novel which I hope I can start soon, focusing on these exact themes - the difference between your idea of love and what love actually is, a coming of age story inspired by what Faking It outlined.

Although a lot of things went wrong and I am very disappointed in so many storylines and whatnot, I still think this show matters to so many different people and I’m glad I was a viewer and part of this fandom, made out of very creative and insightful people all around. I’m glad I got to see characters like Karma, Amy, Lauren, Shane, Felix all grow up together into better versions of who they were before. I am glad I was welcome in this fandom even if I’m not part of the community and I wanted you guys to know that you mean a lot to me, this blog wouldn’t be half of what it is without you.

So thank you, guys for your incredible support and thank you, Faking It.

A Mother’s Fear

Like many of us, I’ve seen the accounts.  I’ve seen the tearful pleas the mothers of the Orlando victims have made. The texts they’ve shared; the pictures they’ve posted.

And I’ve cried knowing my boys are asleep upstairs in their beds.

I can’t pretend to know their pain. I won’t say I know how they feel - because I don’t. I don’t understand the depth of their pain, I can’t imagine the number of tears they’ve shed, the rage they feel.

I woke up Sunday with a headache. I got cleaned up and walked downstairs.  Roy sat next to me as we ate breakfast.

“Did you read about this?” I asked him, when I saw the first article on the Washington Post’s app.

“Multiple victims…” he trailed off as he read.

At first they reported multiple victims, then law enforcement said 20, and as the number climbed, Roy and I read in horrified silence.

Our 21 year old son is gay. We’ve seen him bullied time and time again for who he is, and he was upstairs getting ready to go to DC for his volunteer shift for DC’s Pride weekend.

My heart caught, and I had a hard time taking a breath.  Do I ask him to stay home? Should my fear outweigh his desire to participate in something that is important to him?

Roy and I have been together a long time. He knows me. He knows where my thoughts can go. He took my hand and kissed it, and in his eyes, I saw understanding. “They shouldn’t win.” was all he said, and though I hated it, I knew he was right.

As we got ready to head to the grocery store, I told Corey to be safe. To be aware of those around him.

“You don’t want me to go, do you?” he asked me.

I looked at our son. He’s almost 22. He isn’t a little boy anymore - though he’ll always be my baby. He’s a young man. An adult - one that makes his own decisions and knows his own mind.

“No, I don’t want you to go,” I told him honestly. “But that’s not my decision. Just promise us you’ll be safe.”

He told us he would, and he said he loves us.

And my thoughts turned dark. Did those mother’s think for ONE second that their child leaving for what should have been a fun night out would be the last time they would see them?  Maybe they asked their parents if they looked ok. Maybe they said goodbye, but didn’t think to tell their parents they loved them. Maybe their parents forgot to say it.

As a mother, my goal is to keep our boys safe, but I also know that I can’t keep them locked up in their rooms.  So, I hope, and I pray that Roy and I taught them the best we can.

And when the older boys got their permits and then their licenses, I prayed that we taught them to drive defensively. To understand the dangers that come with having that privilege.

When Joe left for boot camp, I prayed that he would be safe, that he would make it through.

All the while knowing that accidents are often things we don’t see coming.

But I also know that-in this world-Corey being gay adds another layer. I know prejudice exists - and often it’s delivered with a dirty look, or a homophobic slur - things we can brush off and ignore.

But sometimes that hatred takes a darker turn, and the idea that our son could be a target simply because he doesn’t hide who he is… it’s terrifying.

A few years ago, I wrote about our son, and how proud we are that he knows his own heart. Someone replied that we shouldn’t think we were special just because our son accepted who he is.  At the time, I was offended, but wondered if she was right.

And then I realized that we are special - not because Roy and I have done anything overtly special. We haven’t done anything to warrant a prize or recognition. But we live our lives true to who we are.  We are deeply in love and don’t care who knows it.  If I have free time, there is NO ONE in this world I would rather be with than my husband and our boys - NO ONE. There is no place I’d rather be, than by his side, by their side.

And our boys see that. Corey has decided to settle for nothing less than a man he loves as deeply as I love his father. He knows his heart.  And installing that confidence, that knowledge of self in our children - that IS special.  We don’t expect recognition for that, but I am proud that we were able to do that.

Those young men and women in Orlando died too early, they died before… Before what, I do not know, as I think the answers are too big.

I know one couple died right before they were to be married.  A young man was taken away from his family on the first day of his family vacation. Another young man ran a travel agency that helped his customers see the world. Another young woman moved back to Florida to help her mom and grandmother.

Their futures were bright - they were loved, cared about and cherished. They loved, they cared and they cherished those close to them.

As the mother of a gay son, I pray for the ignorant to be educated, or at least a realization, that murdering someone that disagrees with you or doesn’t live the exact same way as you do is futile.

As the mother of a gay son, I pray that my son won’t be taken from us because he’s honest about who he is.

And as a mother, I cry with those that lost a child in a senseless act.

As a wife, I cry for those that lost their partners, their husbands, their wives.

As an American, I cry for those that are engaging in a war of cowardice.

And as a human being, I cry knowing that the pain of this act will be far reaching, and the pain will stay with us.

advice for closeted trans ladies

[b/c someone sent a submission instead of an ask by mistake.]

here’s what i believe: when you see yourself as something other than a dude, people feel differently about you than they do about dudes. they might not consciously treat you different, and in fact they’re pretty adamant about thinking about you as a dude. but they feel about you the way they feel about Not Dudes.

if you see yourself as a girl, people feel about you the way they feel about girls. the more used to thinking of yourself as a girl you are the more intense this is going to get, and if you have an appearance that doesn’t gel with that it will frequently make people really shitty and uncomfortable.

i was closeted for a while, and am still not what the traditional narrative calls “full time”. i go out in cis dude drag sometimes. it doesn’t work great, people are fucking weird, and i get called “sir” a lot where i wasn’t before (back when i thought of myself as a dude). people sort of have a casual contempt and disrespect for me they didn’t before.

my initial plan was “i’m going to do the trans shit i do in private, because private matters to me, and public doesn’t”. like, unless i was about to go out dressed and presenting, i was going to do nothing special in terms of gender or behavior. sometimes i even tried to butch up my behavior and voice. the issue is that that didn’t work, and it was just more incongruity for people - it genuinely seemed to make them more rather than less weird and uncomfortable.

i find that it helps most to focus on having the behavior and demeanor and body and look people expect from me. to have a gestalt that people expect to go together. i have a hard time, when i’m being a Fake Cis Dude, binding and throwing back my voice, dressing as “"masculine”“ as i do when i’m presenting as openly female. my mannerisms are probably more overall feminine when i’m trying to come off as a dude, and that’s not even wholly conscious - there’s just so much fucking pressure against being a dude. it’s kind of mind-blowing to think about.

even the people close to me got exposed to this, because if i acted more masculine, they’d react with a sort of relief that highlighted how incongruous it seemed to them. like me being a dude in the way i used to be was a red-letter day. i never liked this so i didn’t bother much with it.

ok, there’s the whole kind of confusing spiel about closeting itself. the takeaway is that people might look at you and think or say consciously "i’m looking at a man” but they’re not going to feel that and that’s 99% of what you have to live with. it’s something that continues well into being openly, visibly trans, because a lot of people still say consciously “i’m looking at a man” while treating you in the bullshit way people treat women.

now as to what i actually did while i was closeted, and when i wasn’t in cis society.

i find, in the context of this, that exploring stuff in private i didn’t allow myself to before was a big deal. so was abandoning shame over things. in the first few months i found myself watching a lot of anime and reading a lot of manga because i was kind of bunched up about that as a dude with fucked up gender shit. i did a lot of stuff with my body hair. i experimented a little bit with scents, nail polishes, etc, because i wanted to do new shit and found it fun. i still do even though i’ve settled into a way butcher holding pattern than my initial style.

i was out to some people. i was out to my spouse and i think that was necessary to do a lot of shit - we went shopping together, and it helped that she had the same chest circumfrence as i did (way smaller band + bigger cup size) so we could technically wear the same things. the thrift shop was great and by happy coincidence around the time i came out my local one was clearing out inventory and had 50% or 75% off sales - i spent $100 or so and wound up with literally more clothes than i can easily fit in a closet, and a couple of outfits that are even now staple things for me i walked away with for less than $10.

make Gender Friends and find a way to talk with them about stuff in a way that doesn’t necessarily require the courage to engage in candid 1-on-1 conversation. private blogs, shit like that. doing something like that helped me so much.

put yourself in control of things, consciously, and reject ways you’ve subconsciously attempted to place control in the hands of society or others. try not to be unnecessarily afraid of people seeing you as weird or gay or trans. like, specific fears are very reasonable - stuff like “if my mom knows i’ve been messing with makeup she very well might kick me out”, or “my relationship will probably be damaged if my girlfriend knows i have breast inserts lying around”. i found that coming out was, for me, as much as anything something i did because i was no longer as afraid of the possible negative consequences of coming out as i was of the continuous pain of being seen and treated incorrectly, and of hiding what i wanted to do. but most of all it did me a world of good not to stop myself from doing things while i was alone, or things people had no genuine reason to judge unfairly, just because they were the sort of thing someone who was trans would do and i needed people not to know i was trans.

also, one of the better things that happened to me while i was closeted was getting with other trans ladies intimately and learning how Gay Shit worked.

there’s no reason not to do any particular thing, and honestly even hrt stuff is not visible enough that you can’t do that for at least a while. (i have a body which endogenous estrogen hit like a sledgehammer and it still took a few months for me to feel like i was especially incongruous while pretending to be a dude.)

have courage and try to be afraid of only specific things rather than just living generally in fear. just by figuring this stuff out you are ahead of the game and have made the biggest and most difficult step anyone has to make about gender shit.

good luck!

Mockingjay Part 1 review

Just saw Mockingjay Part 1 again and it was super good. Even better than the book I feel like. I was struck at once by the details and the overarching greatness. Here are some things I think the movie did better than the book:

1. The pearl- This was a great detail. The repeated, subtle presence of the pearl that Peeta gave her in the arena was a really good detail. I felt like Peeta was a lot of the through thread of plot that kept the movie together. And that he was so present and heartbreaking and emphasized throughout the movie, with the interviews, the pearl, her dream, made the ending seem super logical. Part 1 ends with the recovery of Peeta and the tragic consequences (ugh). And because Peeta’s presence was big (though subtle) and so heart-wrenching, it made the ending make a lot of sense. And because it was self contained along that plot line, the pacing actually felt better than it did in the book. What felt like filler in the book, felt really important in the movie. I did not feel like anything was unnecessary, the movie had me in its grip.

2. The cat and the light- I watched Katniss’s face during the scene with the cat and the light scene during the combing. And wow. You could totally see her pain. I remember in the book, that there was a piece of inner monologue there in which she connected the cat chasing the light to how president snow was using Peeta against her. But even though this was an easy thing to miss in the movie (it was subtler), I TOTALLY didn’t miss the inner-monologue. Because Jennifer Lawrence’s acting in this movie is amazing. Apparently people have been complaining about her being too mopey in this movie, but I thought it was perfect. Katniss is far, far from a one note character. And in this movie she is in a lot of pain. But Jennifer Lawrence does not play one level of mope and it is not a weak, passive mope. She gives us amazing subtlety and so many levels of pain and it’s heart-wrenching. Katniss has PTSD, and on top of that she is hurting so much at Peeta’s absense. And even though she is a strong character, we see her struggling under the weight of feelings and that is so important and so well done. And honestly, watching Jennifer Lawrence’s face is a lot better than reading inner monologue. I think it was easier to not get annoyed with Katniss’s moping in the movie because of that.

3. THE HANGING TREE- omigod this song. First of all, I just straight up love this song, I could listen to it forever. But also how the movie used it was MASTERFUL. The dam scene with the people singing and then just the song in the background. POWERFUL. And then the images of Katniss with the song intercut with Peeta’s interview just kept the movie rolling forward like a steamroller of cinematic and emotional power. And here’s what I LOVE that the movie did. We saw rebellion in the districts. And it was tied directly to Katniss’s propos through a line or a song. And not only did this add a lot of weight and stakes to the rebellion, because we got to see it happening, and evoke real movements happening in the world around us (which wow it did) but it also made the things Katniss were doing seem more important. I know I rolled my eyes a little bit in the books at how much the propos were played up. It was all “Katniss is the only one who can do this” and “I don’t want to keep being their puppet” and I was like “really? for movie things?” But they felt really important and well done in the movies. And this raised the importance of everything going on, took it from filler, to super important. It validated everything going on in district 13.The propos felt amazing and significant. Katniss as a figurehead felt really powerful and important. When they saw her in the hospital and saluted her, that was SO powerful. Katniss held power in the revolution in the movie that was harder to believe in the book. There was a super subtle moment about Katniss’s  influence and importance that I loved:

4. The braid- When snow is making his speech early on about the “radicals” and how people should keep working, when he says that associating with the mockingjay symbol is treason, there’s a brief shot of a girl, snow’s daughter I think who looks down at her hair (braided like Katniss’s), has a little “oh shit” moment and starts undoing it. I love that. Katniss is a BIG deal. Even in the capitol, even in Snow’s own house, little girls admire Katniss. And if that doesn’t raise the stakes for what Katniss is doing I don’t know what will.

5. Cressida- OMIGOD I LOVE HER. First of all, I love Natalie Dormer in any shape or form. But she made a character I cared 0 about in the book totally important and complex. Once again, she made the propos feel important and significant. Also the whole “we escaped from the capitol for you” thing felt really important to me. It added to a multi-dimensional view of capitol people, that they are not pure evil and rebel too. And just as a citizen of Panem, we saw the importance the rebellion holds to the average person and the sacrifices people are making. Also, I’m always happy to see more compelling female characters.

6. President Coin- Speaking of complex female characters (nice job, it passed the Beschdel test btw)! So this character was set up SO WELL. She is just the right balance of good and sinister, an ambiguity that will serve the story later on (OH GOD WHY). I love how strong her characterization was- no nonsense, firmly focused on the cause and super intelligent and a great leader. But we definitely saw her care more about image and strategy than about individuals at times. She was frequently at odds with Katniss, but also had some really tender moments (the scene with Katniss right after the bombing stands out). She is complex and it is great. Well written and acted. Also her eyes seemed almost inhuman what was up with that? Is that the actress or like contact lenses or what? It totally set me off, but I think it’s a good thing to be unsettled about that particular character.

7. Effie- (on a female character note). It was a small thing but I love how on point all her outfits were even with the jumpsuits she had to work with. Effie is perfect, and another example of humanizing the capitol. Effie was not in the 3rd book this much if I remember, but she was a strongly characterized familiar face (god, even in a gray jumpsuit, even in the very first scene she was just so effie, with her gestures, her ostentatious movement, god great acting I love Elizabeth Banks) who it felt great to have around. A good choice to throw her into the mix.

8. Plutarch- while we’re on great characters and great acting. oh god Philip Seymour Hoffman. :(. It was honestly disconcerting to see him in this. But what a FINE job he did. This character barely held my interest in the books, but he is so well done. His passion for Katniss early on, with little amused looks when she is getting angry, and his TERROR during the air raid, and just every little detail. I expect nothing less from such an amazing actor (dead too soon). Another example of how the movie humanizes the capitol wow.

9. The roses- All the white roses Katniss found had this super creepy sparkle to them, almost like they were mechanical. It was a SUPER subtle special effect but added to their eeriness. President Snow has a hugely bigger presence in the movies than in the books, and to great end I think. He is a truly formidable adversary, and once super creepy and human. We see President Snow bleed (literally!). We see the other side of the war, the plotting and posturing and I think it heightens the conflict a lot, it’s great. and that line (!)- it is the things we love the most that destroy us. Foreshadowing of the hijacking they’ve done to Peeta. (WHICH OMIGOD MY FEELINGS CAN WE TALK ABOUT HOW HEART-BREAKING THAT IS OMIGOD). He is a total creepy asshole. And a really well done one.

10. Finnick fucking Odair- Slow clap for Finnick everyone. He is just my favorite. I loved his character in the books, so obviously I love him in the movie. But it is so well done. They do not AT ALL gloss over Finnick’s struggles. They do not gloss over that he was used as a sex slave. They do not gloss over his pain and PTSD. (ALERT EVERYONE, MEN CAN HAVE SERIOUS PAINFUL FEELINGS AND NOT BE WEAK AND UNMANLY) He was in pain totally parallel to Katniss (but in a very different way- where she was teary, and telling her whole story in her eyes, his face was contorted and he busied his hands with the rope oh god my heart) and I thought as well as being beautifully done that that’s a great thing for gender roles. We see two instances of really strong, badass characters fully experiencing pain and shitty emotions and PTSD in a super validated way without taking away from who they are as people. And one is a man and one is a woman. I have a lot of love in my heart for Finnick Odair also (oh god part 2 stay back stay back demon oh god it’s going to break my fucking heart shit shit not ready) and he was just so good in this. Can we talk for a second about the scene where the team moves in to rescue Peeta and Finnick talks about the shit president Snow made him do and what he learned. So. well. done. We don’t even see this mission happen in the book, but oh lord seeing it totally entrapped me and made my heart race (I played right into the hands of that action sequence). And at the same time we have Finnick’s speech which is SO IMPORTANT and held me heart so completely. Intercut in combination it gripped every part of me and left my heart racing and suffering and OH GOD THIS MOVIE TOTALLY WRECKED MY FEELINGS and it was a great climax.

So essentially this movie was great and no one should hate. It was action, amazing realism about rebellion, awesome gender stuff, and had a really strong emotional heart.

And you know what I’m just gonna say it- it was better than the book.