i have a world to learn here

14 Days to Go: JLPT Study Plan

There are two weeks to go until the world takes the JLPT exam on December 3rd. If, like me, you’ve avoided the subject until you glanced at your calendar, horrified by the lack of time remaining, then it’s time to get an intense study plan into action! Here are some tips on how to make the most of the next 2 weeks.

① Highlight key study areas for the JLPT

  1. Kanji
  2. Vocabulary
  3. Grammar points
  4. Reading
  5. Listening

Since the sections on your exam are Vocabulary, Reading and Listening, I have pinpointed 5 key areas where study is required. Fortunately, there is no writing aspect in the exam, so learning to write those pesky Kanji is not as important as learning to recognise them (and give their readings!). For a list of useful resources based on the study areas, wait for my next post!

② Set yourself (realistic) goals

By now you are probably aware of how much information you can study in a day and retain long-term - you only have 2 weeks, so you should be realistic about what you can learn in that time. Don’t overdo it because you’ll forget it all!

③ Create a Habit Tracker

This can be done on pen and paper, or in an excel spreadsheet like the one above. According to my layout, I have set my Tasks, Goals (in brackets), and then I fill in the actual number of items completed for that task. If it’s over the goal - it turns green - Yay! This way I can motivate myself to get ‘all greens’, as well as picking up on days where I have not performed to the necessary standard. This will also show whether your goals have been realistic, or if you have to adjust them slightly.

Aries —
there was a war in your childhood home, and you can still remember the fires, how the blood was
pretty and sick on the bathroom’s pristine tiles, your mother’s still warm body limp in the tub.
breathe in through the mouth: in, out, in. you are not guilty. her life is not on your hands.

Taurus —
it is okay to love things more than you love people; practical, even.
people have left you, people will leave you – things, though, ah! things will not abandon you.
buy yourself something nice. it is the least bad out of all your choices.

Gemini —
you die every night and are reborn at dawn; you are a walking graveyard,
an army of yesterdays’ ghosts, and you no longer remember who you were at the beginning.
do not weep for the stranger that once inhabited your bones.

Cancer —
you are in love with the idea of love more than you are in love with your lovers;
that is why all your relationships are fleeting, why you are always falling apart.
all the same, smile when he proposes. pretend you do not know how this is going to end.

Leo —
oh, you poor, poor thing. all you have ever wanted was love’s sunlight, but all you ever got
were the thunderstorms, the clouds above your head heavy with sorrow, and so you chose
to drown out the rain between the thighs of a lover. do not regret it, for they were good nights.

Virgo —
you cradled your heart all your life with such care, and when the day came for you
to hand it to another, it shattered like glass in their grip. they did not mean to hurt you, you know.
they just wanted to hold on, afraid it will slip through their fingers like sand.

Libra —
you are the king of bad choices, from lovers to the fights you pick when you are far from sober;
you lost your sanity along the line between what is right and what is not, and you started hungering.
i fear the day your hunger will be quenched – only justice will sate you, and that calls for everyone’s dying.

Scorpio —
you are the one everyone fears: the monster in the closet, the witch at the stake – the devil, falling.
all of this is because they cannot understand you. they fear you like they fear death; instinctively.
do not mind them, for death is a kind god: the sweetest sleep, the darkness from which life is born.

Sagittarius —
some days, you think the sea is but a giant mirror, the vanity of coquettish stars and lazy clouds in passing.
some days, you think it is the fury of our earth mother, her tears and her sorrow saltwater in the breeze.
on all of them, you want to sail its’ lengths; you want to get lost out on the abyss, feel small beneath the sky.

Capricorn —
you learned early on the art of silent war – the war carried by words, sharper than any other blade.
at the same time, you have learned how little you mattered to the world, and so you cast yourself in armor.
i just wish you would learn to love yourself, if only a little. your own words have been cutting you all along.

Aquarius —
there is a sickness in you called longing: you’re wanton, thirsty, hungry, wanting – what, exactly,
well, that is part two, and none of us is really sure. you’re standing here, hands reaching for; come inside.
i will pour us both some wine, and we can pass the waiting time together. one day, you will know what you are lusting after.

Pisces —
all you have ever loved seems to be taken from you, until your house is left an empty, cold thing,
and your soul has been turned into a ruin. do not despair; get up from the floor, dust your clothes.
there are seeds on the upper shelves in the shed. it is a time as good as any to start keeping a garden.

—  

poetry for the signs: the “it is okay” edition,

L. Schreiber

390 Prompts!!!!

1. “A wedding?”
2. “After everything you did, you’re asking ME to apologize for snapping at you ONCE?”
3. “Am I supposed to be scared of you?”
4. “Are you drunk?”
5. “Are you hitting on her for me?”
6. “Are you kidding me? We’re not ‘fine’!”
7. “Are you okay?” “Why do you ask?” “You’re wearing two different shoes.”
8. “Are you really taking his side against me?”
9. “At what point did you think that was a good idea?”
10. “Babe, you have a problem, please, let me help you.”
11. “Be my wife.”
12. “Before I do this, I need you to know that I have always loved you.”
13. “BOOM! That oughta show you not to mess with me!”
14. “But the carnival is right down the street! Can we please, please go!?”
15. “Can I kiss you?”
16. “Come back to bed.”
17. “Come on, let’s throw the dice, see what happens.”
18. “Come over here and make me.”
19. “Come with me.”
20. “Could you be happy here with me?”
21. “Crocs? Who hurt you so much in this life?”
22. “Damn. You clean up good.”
23. “Delete that immediately.”
24. “Did I just say that out loud?”
25. “Did I stutter?”
26. “Did you enjoy yourself last night?”
27. “Did you hear that?”
28. “Do you…well…I mean…I could give you a massage?”
29. “Do you ever stop eating?”
30. “Do you ever think if people heard our conversations they’d lock us up?”
31. “Do you ever think we should just stop this?”
32. Do you like me? Check yes or no.
33. “Do you need me to get anything from the store?”
34. “Do you think it’s possible that I…might be… pregnant?”
35. “Do you think she could have loved me?”
36. “Does he know about the baby?”
37. “Don’t fucking touch me!”
38. “Don’t say that. Not now.”
39. “Don’t say you love me.”
40. “Don’t you dare throw that snowba-, goddammit!”
41. “Don’t you ever do that again!”
42. “Either ask her out or I will do it for you!”
43. “Excuse me, I’m terribly lost. Can you help me?”
44. “Everyone deserves a second chance.”
45. “Everyone keeps telling me you’re the bad guy.”
46. “For some reason I’m attracted to you.”
47. “Frankly, I couldn’t care less.”
48. “Fuck…I feel I’ve been hit by a car.”
49. “Game’s over you son of a bitch! Tell me where she is!”
50. “Give me 5 bucks, I’ll explain later.”
51. “Go on then, tell me. Tell me you don’t love me.”
52. “Go then, leave! See if I care!”
53. “Guess who’s going to be a father?”
54. “H-How long have you been standing there?”
55. “Have I entered an alternate universe or did you really just crack a smile for me?”
56. “Have I ever lied to you?”
57. “Have you ever wanted to hate someone?”
58. “Have you lost your damn mind!?”
59. “He’s missing, not dead.”
60. “Hey! I was gonna eat that!”
61. “Hey, have you seen the..? Oh.”
62. “Hey, I’m with you, okay? Always.”
63. “His ego is so visible, I can almost watch it grow.”
64. “Hold me back!”
65. “Hold my hand dammit, we gotta make this look convincing!”
66. “How about we put the gun down and let’s talk about this?”
67. “How could anyone be that cruel?”
68. “How dare you!?”
69. “How long has it been?”
70. “I almost lost you.”
71. “I am not losing you again!”
72. “I beat you at Mario Kart and now you’re banishing me to the couch for the night?”
73. “I came here to explain what happened, and I’m not leaving until you listen.”
74. “I came home to a Nerf gun on the front porch and a note that says ‘Here is your weapon. I have one too. Loser cooks dinner. Good luck. xo’”
75. “I can manage on my own.”
76. “I can’t… I can’t lose you.”
77. “I can’t believe you talked me into this.”
78. “I can’t explain right now, but I need you to trust me.”
79. “I can’t get you out of my head.”
80. “I can’t let you do that.”
81. “I can’t start over again.”
82. “I can’t stop thinking about you.”
83. “I can’t swim!”
84. “I choose you.”
85. “I could never leave you, I love you too much!”
86. “I did a pregnancy test.”
87. “I didn’t ask for any of this!”
88. “I didn’t know you could cook.” “Oh, trust me I can’t.”
89. “I didn’t know you could sing.”
90. “I didn’t know you were so competitive.”
91. “I didn’t realize I needed your permission.”
92. “I didn’t think it was even possible for you to be so intelligent.”
93. “I don’t care what he said, it doesn’t mean jack squat.”
94. “I don’t know what I did to deserve you.”
95. “I don’t know why I’m crying.”
96. “I don’t snore, do I?” “Like a chainsaw.”
97. “I don’t want to have a baby.”
98. “I don’t want to hurt you.”
99. “I don’t want to let you down.”
100. “I got you a present.”
101. “I guess I was wrong about you. You’re not so bad after all.”
102. “I had a nightmare about you and just wanted to make sure you’re okay.”
103. “I had to see you again.”
104. “I hate you!” “No you don’t.”
105. “I hope one day you’re as happy as you’re pretending to be.”
106. “I just need you to do this one thing for me.”
107. “I just really need to have you here right now.”
108. “I just want this.”
109. “I just want to be alone right now.”
110. “I just wanted you to know that when I picture myself happy… it’s with you.”
111. “I know, but… I love him. You can’t give up on a person you love.”
112. "I know, but he’s your partner for this.”
113. “I know that you have reached a decision, but given that it is a stupid ass decision I have elected to ignore it”
114. “I love you.” “I know.”
115. “I love you. I’ve loved you since the moment I first laid eyes on you and – Oh, screw it!”
116. “I love you a lot, but please stop trying to cook me dinner, you suck.”
117. “I love you for you, don’t you dare think otherwise!”
118. “I love you more than anything in this world… which is why you have to stay here.”
119. “I love you, you asshole.”
120. “I made a mistake.”
121. “I may be an idiot but I’m your idiot.”
122. “I may despise you with the burning white hot intensity of a thousand suns, but that doesn’t mean I don’t love you.”
123. “I may have… ripped my pants.”
124. “I miss her so damn much, and it’s killing me that she’s gone!”
125. “I need you to forgive me.”
126. “I never believed in soulmates until I met you.”
127. “I never learned how to whistle.”
128. “I never meant for anyone to get hurt!”
129. “I saw you staring at each other, I just wasn’t sure if it was sexual tension or murderous rage.”
130. "I see the way you look at me when you think I’m not looking.”
131. “I swear if you weren’t so attractive, I’d have punched you in the face nine times by now.”
132. “I swear it was an accident.”
133. “I swear it was like that when I found it!”
134. “I think I picked up your coffee by mistake.”
135. "I think I’m in love with you and that scares me to death.”
136. “I think we need to talk.”
137. “I think we should have another.”
138. “I think you’re just afraid to be happy.”
139. “I thought you were a dream come true.”
140. “I thought you were dead…”
141. “I trusted you!”
142. “I waited and waited, but you never came back.”
143. “I want my best friend back.”
144. “I want to go back to before….”
145. “I wasn’t going to wait around for you forever.”
146. “I wasn’t planning on asking you, but I’ve come to realize that life is short. Will you marry me?”
147. “I wish I could hate you.”
148. “I won’t give up if you won’t.”
149. “I won’t let you fall.”
150. “I-I can’t trust you anymore.”
151. “I’ll be right over.”
152. “I’ll sleep under the sheets, you sleep on top of them.”
153. "I’m flirting with you.”
154. “I’m freezing!”
155. “I’m laughing because you’re angry. I swear I didn’t do it!”
156. “I’m like 20% sure this plan will work. The other 80% means we could die horribly and violently, but honestly it’s a really solid plan.”
157. “I’m not good enough for you.”
158. “I’m not happy here.”
159. “I’m not surprised that you murdered him.”
160. “I’m not the only one who thinks that.”
161. “I’m only human!”
162. “I’m pregnant.”
163. “I’m sick of being USELESS.”
164. “I’m so happy you’re alive.”
165. “I’m so sorry! I will never doubt you again!”
166. “I’m so stupid to make the mistake of falling in love with my best friend.”
167. “I’m sorry. I didn’t know.”
168. “I’m sorry, but I can’t trust you anymore.”
169. “I’m sorry if this upsets you, but I’m going to marry her.”
170. “I’m sorry, run that by me again.”
171. "I’m sorry, what were you saying? I keep getting lost in your eyes.”
172. “I’m starting an idiot jar. Any time you do or say anything idiotic, you have to put at least a dollar in it—more depending on how stupid the thing that you said or did was.”
173. “I’m tired of being your secret.”
174. “I’m up to the challenge.”
175. “I’m yours.”
176. “I’ve been in love with you my entire life.”
177. “I’ve got good news and bad news.”
178. “I’ve moved on.”
179. “I’ve never felt this way about anyone before… and it scares the shit out of me.”
180. “I’ve seen the way you look at me when you think I can’t see you.”
181. “If he’s going to treat you like shit, I’m going to kick his ass.”
182. “If I didn’t know any better, I’d say you were trying to seduce me.”
183. “If I die, I’m going to haunt your ass.”
184. “If I ever see you anywhere near her, you’ll have to deal with me!”
185. “If my parents knew what I was doing, they’d kill me.”
186. “If this is love, love is easy.”
187. “If you die, I’m gonna kill you.”
188. “If you don’t want to talk about what happened, then say so. Don’t just lie and say it’s fine.”
189. “If you keep looking at me like that we won’t make it to a bed.”
190. “If you shove cake in my face this will be the worst wedding night of your life.”
191. “IF YOU USE UP ALL THE HOT WATER ONE MORE TIME, I’M GOING TO BAN YOU TO THE COUCH FOR A MONTH.”
192. “If you walk out right now, it’s over for us.”
193. “If you walk out that door, you’re no longer one of us. You’ll be one of them and that means I’ll treat you like one of them.”
194. “Is… is that even possible? Like, can we do this?”
195. “Is… that my picture in your wallet/as your home screen?”
196. “Is it really you?”
197. “Is it supposed to look like that? Are you sure?”
198. “Is that a challenge?”
199. “Is that an apology?”
200. “Is that real?”
201. “Is that what I think it is?”
202. “Is that what you’re doing? Trying to make me to hate you?”
203. “Is there a problem?”
204. “Is there a special reason, as to why you’re wearing my shirt?”
205. “Is there something you want to tell me?”
206. “It could be worse.”
207. “It made a difference to me.”
208. “It must be hard with your sense of direction, never being able to find your way to a decent pickup line.”
209. “It was just a dream.”
210. “It wasn’t supposed to happen like that.”
211. “It’s a hobby of mine to prove you wrong.”
212. “It’s all your fault.”
213. “It’s been fun. We’ve had a good run, but you parked in my spot. I’m going to have to kill you now.”
214. “IT’S NOT COMING OFF!”
215. “It’s not what it looks like…”
216. “It’s okay, I’m here for you.”
217. “It’s okay to cry…”
218. “Just leave me ALONE.”
219. “Just talk to me!”
220. “Keep your head up.”
221. “Kiss me.”
222. “Let him go! It’s me you want.”
223. “Let me buy you a drink?”
224. “Let’s do something wild and crazy!”
225. “Look at me - just breathe, okay?”
226. “Look at that. I’ve never seen your face get so red.”
227. “Look, I don’t have much time, but I wanted to say I love you.”
228. “Looks like we’ll be trapped for a while…”
229. “Make a wish.”
230. “Marry me?”
231. “May I have this dance?”
232. “Meet me at midnight. Alone.”
233. “Meet me on the bridge in an hour.”
234. “Meet me on the roof in ten minutes.”
235. “Mind if I cut in?”
236. “My parents asked about you.”
237. “No! I’m tired of doing what you say!”
238. “No one needs to know.”
239. “No one will ever hurt you again.”
240. “None of this makes sense.”
241. “None of that matters now.”
242. “Not a day will go by that I won’t think of you.”
243. “Oh, my God! You’re in love with her!”
244. “Please don’t argue. You have to leave right now, you aren’t safe here.”
245. “Please don’t cry.”
246. “Please don’t do this.”
247. “Please, don’t give up on me.”
248. “Please, don’t leave.”
249. “Please listen to me-”
250. “Please say something.”
251. “Please, take me instead!”
252. “Promise me you won’t let anything happen to him.”
253. “Promise me you’ll stay.”
254. “Remember our first date? When you took me to Starbucks and it took me 15 minutes just to choose a flavour of Frappuccino? I was never sure about anything, never. But I was so fucking sure about you!”
255. “Run, and don’t ever look back.”
256. “She’s been missing since Friday and you’re not worried?”
257. “She’s missing, not dead.”
258. “Shit, are you bleeding?!”
259. “Shopping? Do I have to go?”
260. “Shut up and kiss me.”
261. “Since when do you drive a motorcycle?”
262. “So? It’s not your problem so butt out.”
263. “So, I found this waterfall…”
264. “So there was an accident…”
265. “Somebody’s in love!”
266. “Sorry, I thought I was alone…”
267. “Stop taking pictures! I’m fucking stuck. Be useful and help me!!”
268. “Stop talking about love for a minute and help me with this bullet wound.”
269. “Stop talking about the past, I could be dead in a matter of hours… make me up a future.”
270. “Teach me how to play?”
271. “Tell me a secret.”
272. “Tell me again why I let you convince me that this was even remotely a good idea.”
273. “That came out wrong.”
274. “That guy at the bar keeps staring at you.”
275. “That is not coming in this house!”
276. “That is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard!”
277. “The joke’s on them.”
278. “The paint’s supposed to go where?”
279. “The sign said not to push the button, so naturally I had to push it!”
280. “The skirt is supposed to be this short.”
281. “The three seconds rule doesn’t apply to sticky foods.”
282. “The way you flirt is shameful.”
283. “There are plenty of people out there who love you.” “Yeah, like who?” “Like me.”
284. “There’s no getting out of this. You ruined me.”
285. “There’s something I need to tell you.”
286. “Things don’t always turn out how they should.”
287. “This is… this is somewhere I never imagined I’d be.”
288. “This is by far the stupidest plan you’ve ever had. Of course I’m in.”
289. “This is so going on YouTube!”
290. “This isn’t just about you. It’s about what’s best for all of us.”
291. “Those things you said yesterday… Did you mean them?”
292. “Time’s up!”
293. “Twins? We’re…we’re having twins?!”
294. “W…Was that you making that noise?”
295. “Wait a minute. Are you jealous?”
296. “Wait, do you two know each other?”
297. “Wake up! Please, please wake up.”
298. “Walk it off!”
299. “Wanna bet?”
300. "Wanna dance?”
301. “We could be amazing!”
302. “We could’ve had it all.”
303. “We have to pretend to be married.”
304. “We missed our chance.”
305. “We’ll finish it the same way we started it…together.”
306. “We’re in the middle of a thunderstorm and you wanna stop and feel the rain?”
307. "Well….don’t keep me waiting”
308. “Well, this is awkward…”
309. “Well, this is where I live.”
310. “What are you afraid of?”
311. “What did I ever done to you?”
312. “What other hidden talents do you have?”
313. “What the hell are you doing here?! I told you I never wanted to see you again!”
314. “What the hell was that?!”
315. “What were you thinking?? Were you trying to get yourself killed?”
316. “When are you going to realize that I don’t care?”
317. “When I come back, that better be exactly where you found it!”
318. “When you love someone, you just don’t stop. Ever. Even when people roll their eyes or call you crazy… even then. Especially then!”
319. “Where did that cat come from?”
320. “Where did you find this?”
321. “Where did you learn to dance?”
322. “Where were you? Do you have any idea how worried I was?”
323. “Who brought pot brownies to the bake sale?!”
324. “Who gave you that black eye?!”
325. “Who’s gonna stop me? You?”
326. “Why are you baking muffins at three in the morning?”
327. “Why are you covered in mud?”
328. “Why are you dressed like that?”
329. “Why are you lying?”
330. “Why are you up so early?”
331. “Why can’t they see that they’re meant for each other?”
332. “Why can’t you see what you’re doing to me?”
333. “Why choose me?”
334. “Why do I even bother?”
335. “Why don’t they just kiss already?”
336. “Why don’t you say that to my face?”
337. “Why wouldn’t you come to me with your problems?”
338. “Will you just shut up for a moment so I can say something nice to you!”
339. “Will you please just give me a hand?”
340. “You are nothing like them.”
341. “You are the best thing that’s ever happened to me.”
342. “You better have a good reason for waking me up at the ass-crack of dawn.”
343. “You braided his hair?”
344. “You broke what?!”
345. “You came back!”
346. “You can trust me.”
347. “You can’t just sit on the sidelines your whole life!”
348. “You can’t leave me in the dark. You have to tell me these things.”
349. "You can’t protect me.”
350. “You deserve so much better.”
351. “You did all of this for me?”
352. “You did this for me?”
353. “YOU DID WHAT?!”
354. “You didn’t tell me it was karaoke night…”
355. “You don’t have to stay.”
356. “You don’t know you the way I do.”
357. “You don’t need to protect me.”
358. “You fainted…straight into my arms. You know, if you wanted my attention you didn’t have to go to such extremes.”
359. “You got her pregnant?! What were you thinking?”
360. “You had me at ‘free pizza!’”
361. “You have no idea what I’ve done for you.”
362. “You have the most amazing eyes.”
363. “You have to make a choice.”
364. “You have to remember!”
365. “You haven’t even touched your food. What’s going on?”
366. “You heard me. Take. It. Off.”
367. “You know I wouldn’t do this if I had any other choice.”
368. “You know my name?”
369. “You know, it hurt when I realized that you’re not in love with me. But nothing can compare to the pain I felt when I saw you fall in love with him…”
370. “You know, it’s okay to cry.”
371. “You lied to me!”
372. ″You look beautiful.”
373. “You make me feel like I’m not good enough.”
374. “You need to leave. Right now.”
375. “You need to let her go.”
376. “You need to wake up because I can’t do this without you.”
377. “You never told me you had a fucking twin.”
378. “You say the nastiest things when you’re angry, so yes, I’m walking away from you now.”
379. “You shouldn’t have even been there!”
380. “You walked away. Not me.”
381. “You weren’t supposed to hear that.”
382. “You’ll be the death of me.”
383. “You’re hiding something from me.”
384. “You’re my one exception.”
385. “You’re not alone.”
386. “You’re safe now. I’ve got you.”
387. “You’re the only one I trust to do this.”
388. “You’re too good for me.”
389. “You’ve got to be kidding me!”
390. “You’ve only heard his side of the story. You never asked mine.”

some lessons I learned from the Foxes

Andrew: know yourself. enforce your boundaries because you have the right to. ask for help when you need it. 

Neil: you are not the people who hurt you. you do belong somewhere. 

Aaron: facing the world alone will only bring you pain. forgive. 

Renee: you can always change. you are not irredeemable. 

Dan: your dreams aren’t stupid or impossible. you can achieve them. 

Allison: no one can tell you who to be. you decide. 

Matt: never forget what made you the person you are today. it may not be pretty, but you’re here, and that counts for so much. 

Nicky: you are nothing to be ashamed of. anybody who makes you feel different isn’t worth your time or energy. 

Kevin: you are stronger than you think. you are capable of greatness. 

anonymous asked:

Hi! What secrets of Adulting have you managed to pick up? How do you adult I am a year older than you (I think) but I still can't convince myself not to eat ice cream for breakfast or find a job that will pay me a living wage, like even my cat judges me. Your cat seems cool? Help! Also I too am drunk, thanks autocorrect!,

OH GOD I DON’T KNOW. I’m not very good at adulting in private–I haven’t cleaned a single thing in my house (dishes, laundry, floors, w/e) in a terrifyingly long time, and I had french fries and gin for “dinner” (it was at happy hour, I ate at happy hour.) 

I CAN convincingly portray an adult to the outside world, however. Here are my tricks, such as they are: 

-Adulthood is a performance, so work on your stagecraft. Get some make up that suits you, and learn to quickly apply it with a minimum of fuss. If you can afford it, have the nice people at Sephora match a foundation and a cover up to your skin. That plus some basic eyeliner gets people who are younger than you to believe you are a Put Together Grown Up, and people who are older than you to believe you are a Responsible Young Person. It’s sexism at work, but it makes a difference. I think people interpret it as the facial equivalent of having neat handwriting. 

-If you’re gonna be a lazy and self-sabotaging asshole, figure out how to do that without getting in your own way (too much.) I am the LAZIEST ASSHOLE, and I make my life far more complicated and disgusting than it needs to be as a direct result of that–but I let myself fuck things up in private. I fuck things up for myself, not for other people. It sucks for ME if my kitchen is filthy. My work, however, gets done on time. Prioritize your laziness. I can’t not do my work because I want to lie on the couch and watch Jane the Virgin. I CAN refuse to do my dishes because I want to lie on the couch and watch Jane the Virgin. Decide what nonessential system you’re gonna sabotage, and deliberately sabotage that instead of waiting around to see if this time you’re gonna fuck up the life support. (This is obviously a stopgap for if you absolutely, pathologically, for some reason, NEED to be a lazy, self-sabotaging asshole. as I apparently do. If you have the option of NOT being a lazy, self-sabotaging asshole, DO THAT INSTEAD.) 

-in a related story, the only time I have consistently had a clean and comfortable living situation was when I lived with someone else, and therefore being a lazy asshole at home would fuck things up for more than just me. If shame motivates you, FINE. USE IT. 

-Smile at people and say hello. People like it when you smile at them and say hello. If you can remember their name, say their name. I do not have this instinct even a LITTLE–I have deliberately trained myself to do it in professional contexts. I think it helps. 

-Faking it IS making it. The other day I was like “UGH, IT IS GOING TO BE SO CLEAR THAT I’M A LAZY IDIOT WHO DOESN’T CARE ABOUT [THING] IN THIS MEETING, AND EVERYONE WILL DESPISE ME AND SEE ME FOR THE FRAUD I AM,” and then I was like “HOW CAN I GIVE A CONVINCING PERFORMANCE OF A PERSON WHO RADIATES WARMTH, EFFICIENCY, AND EXPERTISE DURING THIS MEETING?”, and then I googled a couple things and jotted down some notes and considered a couple things, and by the time the meeting came around I was not just giving an effective performance of a person who was prepared, I was ACTUALLY prepared. 

-People tend to think your life is together if your outfits are together. This is also sexism. It still works. Do your best to make sure your outfits are clean and neat. Doesn’t mean they have to be boring. Just clean and neat. My apartment is in a SHAMBLES atm, but I leave the house dressed for the part of Responsible Adult. 

i have no idea if any of this will help, but it’s what I got. You have a cat, and cats are good, although they are also sometimes judgmental! It’s okay for your cat to know you are a mess. It’s okay for YOU to believe you’re a mess. Just try and put on a convincing show for other people. 

A Killer First Chapter

Anonymous asked:

Do you have any advise on how to open a story? I have all my characters and my plot and my conflict and everything but I don’t know how to start. How to keep a reader hooked and interested enough to keep going.

This is a little ironic, because I’m about to rewrite my opening three chapters for The Warlord’s Contact from scratch for about the tenth time. But practice does make perfect, and boy have I learned a lot through this process.

Sometimes you look at a story and you just know how it needs to open. It’s the most obvious choice in the world, and it’s clear why no other option would work.

Unfortunately, that’s not often the case. Usually, the beginning to your book will take preplanning and rewriting and replanning and bit more rewriting, and all the while you’ll never quite be sure you chose the best spot to open to, or the right characters to introduce, or the proper setting. 

Here are a few specific methods of thought for tackling your first chapter…

Keep reading

in light of this tumblr “safe” mode, i want to talk about my own experience with this website. im almost 19 now and i joined tumblr when i was 14. here are some details of how tumblr was a part of my journey as a lesbian:

  • i literally discovered that im gay from tumblr. it’s a kinda cheesy story but i was 14 and on tumblr on a sideblog of someone i followed that was dedicated to pictures for her future wife. i was 50 pages into looking at lesbian wedding photos when i realized that straight people don’t Do That
  • the first person i came out to was via tumblr. i told my best friend at the time who i met on here through the “fan mail” we had then and i was sobbing typing out the message. receiving her support and having someone outside of my town to talk to about it (who was also struggling with her sexuality) meant the world to me 
  • i first learned about lgbt history and activism through tumblr. it’s the reason i became interested and invested in social justice and obviously this education continued way beyond tumblr but it gave me my start coming from a school that, like many other high schools, erased the existence of gay people in its curriculum.
  • it introduced me to almost ALL of the gay content that i consumed. the tv shows, movies, books, singers, webcomics, etc that’s had gay representation that’s helped me come to terms with my sexuality over the years, I almost solely found through tumblr. 
  • most importantly, it gave me gay friends. im from a conservative town in florida and before my first year at college this year, i had no means of making gay friends or really any friends at all (because i was hated as an out lesbian in my town) in person. I’ve made so many gay friends on here who were INSTRUMENTAL in me accepting myself and still are so important to me to this day

im 18 now but all of the things listed above happened when i was ages 14-17. i know that this website is awful at times but for gay youth who are completely isolated from any sort of lgbt community, it can be really REALLY important. @staff you’re not protecting anybody, you’re literally harming gay youth and you need to fix this shit now.  

star crossed rivals

this post is not only about princess allura and prince lotor being foils, but also keith and acxa being set up as rivals season 3

for related tweets, check out these threads !!   

Keep reading

saturn in the signs

aries - saturn in aries is a very challenging placement - saturn is exalted in libra and so falls in aries, which can be difficult when aries is such a force to be reckoned with. you may struggle to chase your ambitions for worry or self-esteem issues, or you could blindly leap after everything you desire without realising the responsibilities of your dreams. you can falter when trying to assert yourself, and you might feel older than your age, unable to let go and just live without repercussions. when you learn to have confidence in yourself and your abilities, the results of your projects will reflect your inner balance. 

taurus - in taurus, saturn’s lessons revolve around security. saturn in taurus really struggles to feel comfortable, stable and safe, and they often cling onto things to find a sense of security in life. but material possessions can’t fulfil you ultimately, and that’s a lesson that saturn in taurus needs to learn. they need to go a little deeper and learn to feel secure in themselves before they can find it in the world. hard work and a little bit of luxury will help them to find what they need, but they have to be open to receive it. they can struggle to express their romantic and creative side too, so it’s important to embrace the parts of themselves that they so often leave behind. 

gemini - saturn in gemini can really struggle in their early years, and this is because gemini embodies so much of the childhood experience - education, curiosity, thinking and learning, siblings and the hometown. they are prone to falling into negative thought patterns, and may struggle with nervousness and anxiety too. this placement often indicates shyness, especially in early life, but it does ease up as you age so don’t fret. saturn in gemini can really take their time learning a subject, but once they fully understand, they never forget and seem to master the subject effortlessly. they are logical, make great writers and teachers, and often doubt their abilities. they often have a head for business too, but it’s imperative that they learn to communicate clearly and without inner chaos for their many talents to manifest. i would suggest writing out your feelings if you’re struggling with this placement, because it’s easy to feel alone in the world with it and nobody should feel that way.

cancer - saturn in cancer controls their emotions. they often lock them away and may struggle to understand and express their own levels of empathy and emotion. it’s a life lesson for these people to learn to come out of their shell and live for themselves, as they can often suppress their passions and needs for the sake of their family’s. saturn in cancer often clings to others, craving the warmth and security they needed as a child; however, they hate to be dependant or needy, and so there’s this inner push-pull that can easily spiral into self hatred if allowed. it’s important that they look at themselves and their past, come to terms with it and try to learn from it too. if you have saturn in cancer, try to create a soothing home that puts warmth in your heart, as the home environment of these people is very important to them and can help them feel more secure. it’s also worth trying to build up your confidence, as you will feel much better if you have your own back.

leo - saturn in leo often manifests as a strong-willed, deeply ambitious person, who can come across as cold and stubborn, but really just needs recognition for what they do. they want people to admire them, and this need to be recognised often comes from childhood somewhere. ego plays a bit part in the life of leo in saturn, and they can struggle to connect with their true selves - they usually have tons of creative talent but no knowledge of how to unlock it, and so are prone to frustration. these people tend to feel they are inferior to others, and they can sabotage themselves by putting themselves down. they can be jealous too, and they try to protect their delicate selves from others by being cold and aloof. the lessons that saturn in leo need to learn revolve around humility, creativity and love; love for others, sure, but mostly for themselves, because it’s this cold centre that brings all the trouble. you must balance the power you have inside, and if you can, you’ll find true joy in life at last.

virgo - this is a great placement for saturn if you can make the most of it; unfortunately it’s not so great if you can’t. at its worst, saturn in virgo brings compulsive behaviours, control issues, harsh self-criticism and niggling health concerns. however, these modest people are hardworking, able to see the little details that make something perfect, cautious and excellent planners. they just need a little push in the right direction, a self-esteem boost, and to learn to let go. hypochondria can develop in times of stress, as well as anxiety issues in general, but if they can learn to manage their stresses and become more relaxed in day-to-day life, these problems will ease up considerably. control can seem to keep them sane, but in all honesty you’ll never control everything, and if you can’t handle losing it, you’ll never be able to keep it. turn that brilliant mind inwards and look at what’s truly good for you; you’ll know.

libra - saturn is exalted in libra, and so it’s quite a nice placement really; these people are fair and pleasant, and quite charming. this can seem a very natural and even easy placement for saturn, but of course it isn’t without its lessons; saturn in libra often experiences restriction when it comes to relationships. they can struggle to relate to others on a personal level, and may find it very hard to be in a relationship. the relationships they do enter may feel forced or loveless, but they themselves don’t know how to mend these holes. the key lies within, and reflection will definitely help. once you are aware of the patterns you form throughout your life, you can work on changing the ones that aren’t helpful for you, and you can experience more open, romantic and pleasant relationships. it’s important to stabilise yourself and take responsibility for the relationships you aren’t happy with, for this placement to flourish.

scorpio - now this is one of the more turbulent positions for saturn; scorpio is so raw, so emotional and sometimes chaotic, while saturn seeks the tangible, control, results. however, i actually this has the potential to be a really good placement; these people are intuitive, determined and mentally very strong. they are calculating and sometimes quite controlling, in the murky manner of scorpio. the main problem with this placement is that saturn restricts the emotional goldmine that is scorpio. this can lead to all manner of emotional issues, repressed memories, and even holding onto negative energies around them. they can struggle to see their true intentions and often fear rejection and abandonment deeply. they can struggle to open themselves up to another person or be intimate. they must learn to open their eyes and look at themselves honestly, with the same sharpness they look at others, and then focus all that immense energy on healing from whatever is dragging them down. it’s hard and painful, but we all know the strength of this placement.

sagittarius - saturn in sagittarius can seem like a weird match, right? but actually, it fits quite well. this placement brings strong ethics and morals, a real lust for learning, skepticism and strong intuition. however, these people may feel dissatisfied with their education, feeling it did them no good and that they need to teach themselves. they can swing from skeptical to cynical in the blink of an eye, or from intuitive to blindly guessing at life. this placement is surprisingly prone to bouts of depression, as it’s hard to need your freedom but be scared of the consequences of it. they can struggle to open up and trust others, and can sometimes rebel just for the sake of rebelling, rather than because they believe it’s right. the lessons of this placement focus on balancing ethical codes with human needs and wants, structuring your learning so you can make the most of it, and learning to find the wonder in the world. this placement is great for teachers and often leads to your becoming a leader in your chosen field, but you must heal from your issues first.

capricorn - saturn is at home in capricorn, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have its own set of challenges like any other saturn placement. issues of control and perfectionism can make achievements difficult, although this is actually a very hard working placement that prides itself on its achievements and the completion of goals. saturn in capricorn often sees things in black and white, feeling that emotions are all awful things that distract from progress, and anything less than perfection is failure. but awareness is a huge part of making strides, and as much as they crave recognition, their inner self needs recognition by the outer self in order to truly flourish. time heals all wounds, and keeping this in mind will help you to heal your own. 

aquarius - saturn in aquarius is a natural psychiatrist, a scientist at heart. they can apply themselves fully to anything that peaks their interest, and their hearts are solid gold. but they can struggle to fit in amongst their peers, and their way of living can be unconventional and possibly even distressing to them. it’s important that they learn to balance their own lifestyles with their dreams and morals. these people are wonderful friends, and have fair hearts. as the traditional ruler of aquarius, saturn is surprisingly comfortable here, and if you can be honest with yourself and apply your beautiful minds and hearts to the world around you, i think this is actually a wonderful placement for saturn.

pisces - saturn in pisces can be a very tough placement, as saturn deals with structure and pisces dissolves everything it touches. but this is a sensitive and extremely creative placement for saturn, and if you listen to its lessons, you are likely to become a wise and empathic person, without feeling consumed by negativity. it’s very easy to fall into depression with this placement, because you may feel responsible for others, but if you learn to put your needs first and to step back when you need to, you’ll find this eases up considerably. inner reflection and connecting the mind and body to the soul, will help you on your journey. it’s important to learn to say no and to let out your feelings through some creative pastime. 

2

I got everything I need right here with me. I got air in my lungs, a few blank sheets of paper. I mean, I love waking up in the morning not knowing what’s gonna happen or, who I’m gonna meet, where I’m gonna wind up. Just the other night I was sleeping under a bridge and now here I am on the grandest ship in the world having champagne with you fine people. I figure life’s a gift and I don’t intend on wasting it. You don’t know what hand you’re gonna get dealt next. You learn to take life as it comes at you… to make each day count.

Masculine Poses for Inquiring Trans Guys

Having spent my whole life posing to be “pretty” (from family portraits to Porn shoots), I found myself wanting to look more masculine in my personal photos. But how? I looked through Tumblr and all I really found were a bunch of man-butts – which wasn’t terrible, but also wasn’t what I was looking for. So I did my own research and made this post for anyone else who was wondering! 

Just an important note: this is not meant in any way to uphold gender roles. I just want to help people out who want to express themselves more masculinely in visual media or who are self-conscious of photos because they don’t want to look like a girl (i.e. me, and probably most pre T boys). Regardless of your sex, gender, race, orientation, origin, or class, you should be allowed to be yourself! I just wanted to point out some rules of conventional photography and posing that allow a person to present in a more “masculine” way :)

So, some things to remember when taking photos that will accentuate your masculinity:

  • Your eyes should follow the line of your nose.
  • A lot of photography has men squinting. Not sure why, but maybe they’re on to something?
  • Closed hands (a.k.a. fists or loose fists) are considered more masculine than open hands in photography. If your hands are open, keep your palms pointed down and try to shoot the tops of your hands. The sides of the hands are considered dainty and womanly.
  • When posing, try not to raise the shoulder you have pointed at the camera or tilt your head toward a raised shoulder. If you do a head tilt, tilt your shoulders in the same direction as your head. It sounds complicated, but there’s a picture of it below!
  • IT IS OKAY TO SMILE! If you feel like smiling makes you look too feminine or makes you look silly, try a smirk or a lustful look. Or just look serious I guess. IDK, I’m new to this too so :P In porn there’s this look they have us do called “fashion face.” You literally make no expression, you just stare at the camera like you have resting bitch face. If you’re not one for smiles, try it, you might like it! (I personally make an effort not to look angry or depressed in my photos, and I have always sucked at faces so that’s why I rambled here. Don’t hate me lol).
  • Try to accentuate your jawline – find a facial pose that makes the jawline look strong and present. Always keep your chin tilted up and toward the camera!

Here are some photos of different poses considered masculine in conventional art and photography (there is one that has more anime-style poses for those of you who like to cosplay or just like to be really cool!):

In the end, it’s important to remember that it will take time to grow into your body, and it will take time to learn how to command it, too. If you’re like me and have to wait a few more years before you can start T, but you still want the world to see you as you are, I’m sure this will help. I’ll be trying out some of these poses and uploading them here, and I’d love to see yours. I know my blog is small, and I’m no expert, but I really hope this reaches anyone who needs it.

uranus & your uniqueness

Most people here have their Uranus in Aquarius; sign interpretations are less personal due to the slow-moving nature of Uranus. For more personal insight, look to its house placement in the chart to better understand where your uniqueness manifests most often - here’s a quick cheat sheet

I have (an) erratic … / I am unusual in …

1st 🏠: personality traits / my self expression and how I see the world

2nd 🏠: sense of security and self-worth / my values and principles

3rd 🏠: thinking patterns / how I communicate and learn

4th 🏠: childhood memories / my inner circle and domestic life

5th 🏠: lovers and creative expression / my leisurely interests and talents

6th 🏠: daily routines / how I take care of myself and others

7th 🏠: partnerships & relationship needs / how I connect with others

8th 🏠: legacy & flow of resources / how I form intimate bonds

9th 🏠: spiritual​ beliefs / how I expand my knowledge and horizons

10th 🏠: public persona / how I present myself and what I look for in a career

11th 🏠: group roles / how I belong in my community and circle of friends

12th 🏠: dreams and sleeping habits / my alone time

8

I got everything I need right here with me. I got air in my lungs, a few blank sheets of paper. I mean, I love waking up in the morning not knowing what’s gonna happen or, who I’m gonna meet, where I’m gonna wind up. Just the other night I was sleeping under a bridge and now here I am on the grandest ship in the world having champagne with you fine people. I figure life’s a gift and I don’t intend on wasting it. You don’t know what hand you’re gonna get dealt next. You learn to take life as it comes at you… to make each day count.

8
“Well, yes, ma'am, I do… I mean, I got everything I need right here with me. I got air in my lungs, a few blank sheets of paper. I mean, I love waking up in the morning not knowing what’s gonna happen or, who I’m gonna meet, where I’m gonna wind up. Just the other night I was sleeping under a bridge and now here I am on the grandest ship in the world having champagne with you fine people. I figure life’s a gift and I don’t intend on wasting it. You don’t know what hand you’re gonna get dealt next. You learn to take life as it comes at you… to make each day count.”
Normal Horoscope

Aries: The faces in your old yearbooks shift and change all the time, there no reason you would notice or care.

Taurus: Today while idly playing video games you made a friend. They were too shy to talk to you.

Gemini: Rekindle a love for the greatsword.

Cancer: Chapstick is not food, put that down, you’ll get sick.

Leo: Take her by the waist and dance into the night. You will forget.

Virgo: The vines twist and climb the walls of your house. When you are long long gone they will still be here, a great green headstone to what once was.

Libra: The time for kindness is gone. Unearth the hatchet and get to sharpening.

Scorpio: Don’t cry. It wont grow back. Eventually, you’ll learn this is what you wanted. 

Sagittarius: The stars say you’re lying to yourself. They couldn’t clarify about what though. I have a hunch that you know.

Capricorn: You cannot wish the leaves back on the trees. It is autumn, allow all things to be beautiful as they are.

Aquarius: To mistake suffering for debt is folly. The world owes you nothing, so go spray cheez-wiz directly into your mouth you beautiful disaster you.

Pisces: Cradle your kind thoughts like fireflies in your hands, keep them with you. It will keep you warm.

AMERICAN GODS SENTENCE STARTERS

episode two - the secret of spoons. ( contains violence and nsfw themes )

  • ❝ can you hear me ?
  • ❝ you want help ? fine. ❞
  • ❝ let me tell you a story. once upon a time, a man got fucked. now, how is that for a story
  • ❝ let me paint a picture of what’s waiting for you on the shore. ❞
  • ❝ and all for what ?
  • ❝ and i ain’t even started yet. ❞
  • ❝ this guy gets it. ❞
  • ❝ angry is good. angry gets shit done. ❞
  • ❝ you’re already dead, asshole. at least die a sacrifice for something worthwhile. ❞
  • ❝ let. the motherfucker. burn ! let it all burn. ❞
  • ❝ were you shot at ?
  • ❝ well it depends on who you ask. ❞
  • ❝ i don’t know what the fuck you speak of. ❞
  • ❝ how was the funeral ?
  • ❝ you wanna come in and talk about it ?
  • ❝ mmm-mmm-mmm. what a little asshole. ❞
  • ❝ oh, you know him ?
  • ❝ they don’t have a fucking clue. ❞
  • ❝ i don’t give a fuck if they don’t have a fucking clue, i want one ! give me a fucking clue !
  • ❝ good. compact amended. ❞
  • ❝ your first bed as a free man. enjoy it. ❞
  • ❝ an assault on you is an insult to me. don’t think because i didn’t lose my temper i am not angry, or am lacking a plan. ❞
  • ❝ i didn’t mean to wake you. ❞
  • ❝ they told me you died. ❞
  • ❝ you were just having a bad dream. ❞
  • ❝ you going to miss it ?
  • ❝ too many people tell each other not to repress their emotions, to release their feelings, to let the pain go. there’s a lot to be said for bottling up emotions. ❞
  • ❝ what i say has got to be said, so i want you to consider my words very carefully. ❞
  • ❝ say it. ❞
  • ❝ you are only obligated to feel bad about that for so long. ❞
  • ❝ let there be beauty where there can be. ❞
  • ❝ plan is, we will be meeting with a number of people preeminent in their respective fields, and then we will rendezvous in one of the most important places in the country. ❞
  • ❝ i don’t like dropping in on friends empty handed. ❞
  • ❝ you can’t look out for yourself, how the hell are you gonna look out for me ?
  • ❝ not so fast. we need to talk, [] . ❞
  • ❝ funny how things supposed to make you look good only make it worse. ❞
  • ❝ the fuck is this ?
  • ❝ i’m all sorts, [] .❞
  • ❝ i’m the one they sacrifice to. then till now. ❞
  • ❝ time and attention. better than lamb’s blood. ❞
  • ❝ i hate that. i hate that they were hurting you, [] . i would never do that to you. ❞
  • ❝ i want you in my camp with us. ❞
  • ❝ look at it like this: we’re the coming thing. we are already here. ❞
  • ❝ i was impressed with how you dealt with him/her/them. ❞
  • ❝ who’d have thought you had it in you ?
  • ❝ he/she/they were underestimating you. they all are. not a mistake i’ll make. ❞
  • ❝ i can give you so much more. you name it, honey. what do you need ?
  • ❝ don’t fight gravity, [ ] . i’ve been at this a while. ❞
  • ❝ i’m trying to help you. ❞
  • ❝ keep your neck out of the belt. ❞
  • ❝ that went as well as can be expected. ❞
  • ❝ i think i’m losing my mind. ❞
  • ❝ oh, like the rest of your life is sane. ❞
  • ❝ at times, the universe does seem to have singled you out for unique abuse. in these moments you have to ask yourself, would i rather be ignored ?
  • ❝ always better dead than forgotten, and no one is ever going to forget you. ❞
  • ❝ it’s a sudden onset of strange. fair cause for consternation, unless strange is a new language and what we’re doing here is vocabulary building. ❞
  • ❝ you may have to consider that you didn’t see what you saw, or you did. the world is either crazy or you are. they’re both solid options. take your pick. ❞
  • ❝ when you decide, come and tell me. but don’t rush into it. take your time. difficult decision. ❞
  • ❝ there are bigger sacrifices one might be asked to make than going a little mad. ❞
  • ❝ you wanna know the secret of my success ? the secret is charm. ❞
  • ❝ i only come when matters are vital, as they are now. ❞
  • ❝ god, you are gorgeous. you have not aged. ❞
  • ❝ the truth is not what people want to hear. ❞
  • ❝ prettiest woman, prettiest lies. ❞
  • ❝ black as night, sweet as sin. you take coffee, then i read your future. ❞
  • ❝ he does not know our world. ❞
  • ❝ i’m easing him in. ❞
  • ❝ you are the worst man i have ever seen. ❞
  • ❝ nice to see you, old friend. i brought a gift. ❞
  • ❝ i come here only to share bread and information. what you do with the latter is entirely up to you. ❞
  • ❝ i’d be happy to help. ❞
  • ❝ oh, he is nobody’s husband, and i am nobody’s wife. ❞
  • ❝ family is who you survive with when you need to survive, even if you do not like them. ❞
  • ❝ i am not a good cook. when i was younger there were servants to make meals. here there are no servants; there’s only us. ❞
  • ❝ learning is beneath me. ❞
  • ❝ i thought you were supposed to read tea leaves ?
  • ❝ that bad, huh ? any good news ?
  • ❝ you brought that madness into my life once. never again. ❞
  • ❝ you know me. you know what these hands have done. ❞
  • ❝ you don’t want me, you want [] , and he’s/she’s/they’re not here. ❞
  • ❝ it will be glorious, win or lose. ❞
  • ❝ i am tired of glorious. ❞
  • ❝ everyone thought he/she/they must be the good one. so i became me. ❞
  • ❝ time passes. now i am gray. ❞
  • ❝ i think in the old country i am forgotten, and here, i am like a bad memory. ❞
  • ❝ i know the killing. ❞
  • ❝ to give a good death is art. ❞
  • ❝ every man’s an equal. ❞
  • ❝ is good ?
  • ❝ first blood is mine. so you’ve lost. game is done. ❞
  • ❝ i just started. ❞
  • ❝ ten thousand deaths made right here. ❞
  • ❝ it’s your move. ❞
  • ❝ he’ll take that shot. no joke, no boast, no half-measures. how good are you ?
  • ❝ it’s your decision. ❞
  • ❝ when my voice breaks on this song, remember old love gone. ❞
“It Is Okay” Poetry For The Signs

Aries
there was a war in your childhood home, and you can still remember the fires, how the blood was
pretty and sick on the bathroom’s pristine tiles, your mother’s still warm body limp in the tub.
breathe in through the mouth: in, out, in. you are not guilty. It’s okay her life is not on your hands.

Keep reading

Wonder Woman + Blame

Wonder Woman is the story of a demigoddess who wants to save the world coming to terms with why it should be saved. In hero stories, the default is always that these are innocent people and therefore they deserve to live. 

But what if they’re not innocent? What if no one is.

That’s the complicating factor that Wonder Woman presents. It’s a beautiful, tragic/hopeful nod to the complex reality of war and peace. This is a long one but bear with me. I promise it goes someplace interesting.

Diana: Once I find and destroy Ares, the German armies will be freed from his influence, and they will be good men again, and the world will be better.

This is Diana’s mission statement. She believes the stories her mother told her about men’s innocent nature whole-heartedly and will do anything to return them to that state.

Diana: Who took this from your people?
Chief: [Guestures to Steve] His people.

Steve introduces himself to Diana as “one of the good guys.” But, as much as she comes to know his goodness and integrity, she also comes to know him as a liar, a killer, and a smuggler. Now he’s implicated in genocide. He’s the one of the bad guys in someone else’s story.

Luddendorf: Peace is just an armistice in an endless war.

The writers took some artistic license with this so-called quote from Thucydides, but it accomplishes two things. One, it shows that Diana has been well-tutored in ancient philosophies of war. Two, it sets up the idea of an armistice as a negative outcome of war. Since we have the benefit of history, as viewers we know the WWI Armistice is a direct cause of WWII. 

Diana: They don’t deserve our help, Steve!
Steve: It’s not about deserve! Maybe we don’t! But it’s not about that, it’s about what you believe. You don’t think I get it after what I’ve seen out there? You don’t think I wish I could tell you it was one bad guy to blame? It’s not! We’re all to blame.
Diana: I am not.
Steve: But maybe I am. Please. If you believe that this war should stop, if you want to stop it, help me stop it. Right now.

This is Steve Trevor’s mission statement. He understands that people can be evil, but he still doesn’t want thousands more to die. As a soldier, he has done horrible things in this war and others. He has perpetuated the endless fighting — an inch gained in WWI is two inches that have to be reclaimed. And yet. This war has to stop, and Steve will do anything in his limited power to stop it.

Chief: [Looking at the aircraft] What is it?
Steve: The future.

Steve looks at the plane full of explosive chemicals and describes it as, “The future.” The future holds more horrors than even The War to End all Wars imagined. He knows this. But he still believes in sacrificing his life to save today. To save the very people who will use these kinds of weapons in the future. That is goddamn tragic and beautiful and unsettling.

Ares: They start these wars on their own. All I do is orchestrate an armistice that I know they cannot keep in the hopes that they will destroy themselves. But it has never been enough. Until you.

Ares is not responsible for WWI. I don’t understand the confusion around this because the screenwriters say it blatantly. Diana is right that Ares is involved, but he is “not who [she] thought [he] was.” He isn’t to blame. He isn’t a mind-controller; he’s a whisperer. He hasn’t infiltrated human society to become an emperor, only an advisor. Humans are to blame, and humans will be their own undoing. Ares is trying to prove himself right, so, of course, he wouldn’t directly intervene whether or not he could.

Ares: Yes, Diana! Take them all! Finally, you see. Look at this world. Mankind did this. Not me! They are ugly, filled with hatred. Weak! Just like your Captain Trevor, gone and left you nothing. Pathetic He deserved to burn. 

Diana suffers loss, and she strikes out — a vengeful god. Ares is gleeful. He has to undermine what Steve means to her so that she will complete her transformation into Destroyer God, Hater of Humans. That, of course, pisses her off. So he tries another tact. Nevermind Steve, what about the worse possible vision of humanity? 

Ares: Look at her [Maru] and tell me I’m wrong! She is the perfect example of these humans and unworthy of your sympathy in every way. You know that she deserves it. They all do. Do it! 

A woman who kills in horrific ways for pleasure. Someone who poisoned herself, mind, body, and soul. She does deserve to die. She’s a psychopath with no redeeming qualities (props to the actress, though, for her epic villain laugh). And yet Diana chooses not to destroy her. 

Now, Diana does kill. It’s part of her character. But she does not kill when she doesn’t have to. If she were in a dire situation where Maru has to be killed to save others, you betcha she’s going down. But Ares is asking Diana to be judge, jury, and executioner. The thing is, she can be. She is not to blame. But she won’t. Because Steve, her representative of humanity, loves her and believes she can save the world. It’s a promise between them. And a promise is unbreakable.

Diana: You’re wrong about them. They’re everything you say but so much more. 
Ares: Lies! They do not deserve your protection!
Diana: It’s not about deserve. It’s about what you believe. And I believe in love.

Let’s talk about the elephant in the room here. This screenplay has taken Greek mythology and twisted it into a Christian parable. Turn the other cheek. Love thine enemy. All that jazz. But separate from that, Diana’s choice to love is the right one because of what it represents about our own history.

At the end of WWI, the Allies win. They believe with everything they have that the people of the Central powers deserve to pay for the carnage and destruction. Despite people like Vera Britton advocating for both sides to realize that war itself is the evil and an armistice at such a steep cost cannot possibly lead to lasting peace, the Allies take their pound of flesh. And so the German people let a genocidal maniac take over their country. That’s a bit of simplification, but do some Googling and the gist is there.

Now, what happened after WWII? The Allies rebuilt East/West Germany. The Allies rebuilt Japan. WWII was objectively more horrible and deadly than WWII, but, afterward, there was no armistice. (There wasn’t peace, either. The deconstruction of colonialism in the midst of the Cold War saw to that.) But WWIII hasn’t happened yet. Nuclear weapons haven’t been used again. Chemical weapons use is treated as a horrific act, not an everyday incident. That’s huge

War is perpetual as long as we perpetuate it. Everyone has a justification. And, yes, no justice, no peace. Sometimes you have to go to war to make things right. But at some point, the passing along of blame has to stop or there will never be peace. The hardest thing in the world is to love your enemy if they have wronged you. The hardest thing on this earth is convincing people to love each other enough to share their wealth, their privilege, their protection, their lives. It seems impossible to teach people who hate to love. But, in the end, that’s only thing that will save us.

Ares represents hate. He hates humans for reasons even Diana acknowledges as valid. But Diana can know and understand that hatred without giving into it. She has a complex view of human nature that allows her to retain her idealism. Hate doesn’t have the power here. Love does. That’s why she can destroy Ares. That’s why the German soldiers can breathe fresh air and hug strangers from the other side. In that moment and for a time after, love wins. 

As for the rest of this “century of horrors”? That’s “a different story altogether.”

Diana: I used to want to save the world. To end war and bring peace to mankind. But then I glimpsed a darkness that lives within their light, and learned that within every one of them there will always be both. A choice each much make for themselves. Something no hero will ever defeat. And now I know that only love can truly save the world.

The thesis of this film is that war makes everyone complicit. Everyone is to blame. There are no innocents for a divine hero like Diana to save. But she does what she can because she believes in us and our better angels. Yeah, this is just a superhero movie. But that is an important message, and, sadly, an all-too-rare one.

7

“I love you guys more than anything. As much as acting is cool and this whole career is really, you know, there’s a lot of perks and a lot of cool stuff that comes from it, but, that’s not why I’m here on this earth. I am here to connect with you guys and to inspire you guys and to be inspired by you, and just to keep the cycle of creativity and love and connection just going between us. And I’m here to learn a lot about you guys, and just, make sure that you guys are happy and know you’re not alone in the world. I’m fucked up, you guys are fucked up. I go through a lot of crazy shit, and all that makes me sane, and happy, and feel like I have a purpose- is being able to reach out to you guys. I don’t care about acting, I don’t care about being famous, I hate it all, might be some strong words but, you know, there’s some truth to that. All that makes it worthwhile is being able to inspire and motivate people. Whether they’re fans, whether they’re friends, whether they’re anybody, everybody out there, whoever’s watching this, you’re the reason why I am alive. I wouldn’t be alive if it weren’t for you. I don’t know what I would be doing. So, thank you for watching the show, thank you for being a fan, a friend, and the support…it’s fucking incredible. And marijuana is legal so…”