i just wanted to experiment a bit

Inktober, Day 18 - Young Ford again

Hmmm.  So this is a bit of a mess but experimenting and forging forward is what inktober is all about, right? Right?  I thought I should try to branch out a bit in the angles I’m doing, so I looked at refs for this.  I’m… not sure… it worked out… quite as I wanted.  (Just, it’s not as angled as I was trying for.)  Also, that feeling when you start shading and you’re just like, “why did I do that? bad idea!” but it’s too late and you’re stuck with it.  Ahhhh, inktober.

Tips on CC for ME:A

*UPDATE 8/15/2017* Bioware has updated the game and fixed pretty much all these issues!! This guide is useless unless you have a non-updated version of the game for some reason!

So we all know the facial animations in me:a can be a little…weird. BUT I’ve noticed there are some things you can mess with in the CC that seem to help make it look a little better! Here’s what I’ve found so far:

  • Don’t choose the default for you or your twin: They just have really bad facial animations. Idk why.
  • Give your Ryder dark eyes: The way the eye shading works in ME:A makes your character’s eye’s look really wide all the time. Giving your character a darker eye color for some reason seems to help this. It also helps to choose a preset where the upper eyelids fall lower on the eye.
  • If you’re making a femryder, make the character’s mouth less wide: Someone else noted that it looks like the face scans for femryder’s presets weren’t taken in a neutral pose. This caused a lot of them to have stretched out mouths that looks pretty uncanny in cutscenes. I made my Ryder’s mouth a little less wide than I usually like to, and that seemed to help get rid of those freaky smile scenes.
  • Mess with the depthness of the mouth: Making Ryder’s lips stick out from their face less seems to help with the weird flappy lip syndrome I’ve seen some people have. Default m!ryder has this issue especially bad.
  • Remember to compare the jawline to your character’s neck: You can’t adjust Ryder’s neck thickness like you can with Shepard’s, so if your character has a wide face or a big jaw, it can make their head look too big for their body at times.
  • The funky hair colors are always that bright: Ok this is less about animation and more about aesthetic, but I had to remake my Ryder because her blue hair looked too bright compared to everything else. In my opinion, the dyed hair looks less pastel looking and more neon in-game. There are a couple hairstyles it looks ok on (the curly bob and the braids for f!ryder both look pretty nice with the dyed colors) but most were brighter than I expected.
  • The CC angles the face down and is not in a neutral position: Don’t worry about this one too much, just keep it in mind while you’re messing with the height of Ryder’s facial features bc it does mess with the perspective a bit. I moved my character’s mouth up to what looked like an ok position in the CC, but in most cutscenes her mouth looks waaay to high.

These are the things I noticed gave the animations trouble, and they’re largely femryder centric. If anyone else had a different experience/wants to share more feel free to reblog!

WOOT BROKE W(b)ITCH HAUL

HEY YOU

YES YOU

ARE YOU BROKE BUT STILL WANNA PULL THE THREADS OF THE ETHER AND DEFY THE ESTABLISHED LAWS OF MAN INVOKING THE ANCIENT MAGICK?

GOOD.

You and I are gonna go S H O P P I N G

But, Semiramis! I just told you I’m broke! I can’t get nice things!

*smack*

WRONG.

The world is full of wonders, one of them being

DOLLAR STORES

Remember sweeties, a witch’s best friend is scavenging.

Open your eyes. Look around. Scout your neighborhood.

But what about the things that I can’t get out on the streets!?

That’s what we’re shopping for!

Now before we move on, close your eyes… then open them again because you need to read the rest of the message… and repeat the following mantra:

THE CRAFT REQUIRES NOTHING.
THE CRAFT REQUIRES NOTHING.
THE CRAFT REQUIRES NOTHING BUT MYSELF.

No fancy ingredients, no pretty crystals, no expensive incenses will work better than your RAW HEART AND SOUL.

Mkay?

Now let’s go get some of that good shit.

How good?

Diz gud.

Now, it’s no mystery that a broke ass witch needs to pay a visit to the local dollar stores to get her materials every once in a while, but if you’re like me and live in a place where there are no dollar stores (and there are no dollars either) WHERE TO GO?

The answer is here:

CHINESE IMPORT STORES ARE YOUR NEW SANCTUARY.

These places are AWESOME for a witch on a budget, because they carry EVERYTHING. From toys to art supplies to kitchenware…

AND SPIRITUALITY SUPPLIES.

(That’s where we come in)

Speaking of budget, by the way. Let’s set one.

Say… $15?

FIFTEEN AMERICAN DOLLARS. I will take you home with some nice and rare goodies that will spice up your spells.

Let’s go in.

Oooh what a promising start. This here, my friends, are 25 grams of the purest coke Palo Santo wood. Don’t like it in its natural state?

They have it in incense too!

But we ain’t getting that shit. I’m allergic so I can’t burn anything scented or else I… die.

But know they’re there, as well as essential oils, and they’re quite accessi-

WHAT!?

28 BUCKS FOR A BOTTLE OF ESSENTIAL OIL!?

AIN’T NOBODY GOT CASH FO DAT

Nah I’m just kidding. This is the price in pesos, meaning that these oils are *math happens* $1.55 each!

What a D E A L

BUT THAT’S NOT WHAT WE’RE HERE FOR BECAUSE I’M SOON TEACHING YOU HOW TO MAKE YOUR OWN OILS.

Also, holy shit…

You HAVE to see the candles aisle in this place.

They have them twirly

Large

Larger

The photo is not blury, you’re drunk

Scented

Scentless

Birthdayful

Oh hellooo thereee~

Twelve candles for $1.94 you say?

Meaning SIXTEEN CENTS A CANDLE?

Adopted.

Don’t let anyone tell you cheap candles don’t get the job done, people!

Plus they burn just as good.

NOW at this point the store was 10 minutes away from closing time, so I had to stop taking pictures to get my ass outta there, BUT

Here’s a look at what we got:

That doesn’t look too good, let’s add a F I L T E R

Those little crochet doilies that will serve as my new altar tablecloths? They were $0.55

But Amis! Those don’t look too witchy, more like what my grandma puts under her vases!

First of all, how dare you.

Second of all, how dare you.

Granmotherly stuff is witchy by D E F I N I T I O N. Embrace the grandma aesthetic, y’all!

Also:

If you’re poor you have to be CRAFTY. Look at that! It has a pentacle now. How long did it take? Literally 30 seconds! Imagine what we could do with a whole afternoon!

Ok, I admit it, that was a fiasco, BUT WE’RE ONTO SOMETHING THERE.

Let’s take a closer look at what else we brought, shall we?

This tiny chest is 7.5 cm wide x 5.5 cm tall x 5.5 cm deep (3 in x 2.1 in x 2.1 in) and will hold my pocket altar. It was *drum roll* $1.70!

I was getting tired of using my mom’s big ass scissors to cut my tiny delicate herbs, so I got myself this pair of snips! Price: $0.55 and they’re sharper than Tom Hiddleston’s style. Plus they serve a multitude of purposes, like shanking a bitch.

A quick stop by the crystal shop that was also closing (pfft crystal shop. Sounds like out of a fantasy novel, love it) yields the following goodies:

-Onyx ($0.55)

-Fluorite ($0.27)

-Snowflake obsidian (hard to get where I live. It’s kinda pricey at $2.20. I recommend other kinds of obsidian or maybe just black glass as I’ve been using until today, it still works awesomely. I got the obsidian because I wanted to experiment with it and my Mentor recommended me to get it, same as the fluorite).

-And the CUTEST little quartz formation. This one kinda defeats the purpose because it was a bit pricey. You don’t need it; any clear quartz will work the same.  It was $4.50 and it was my guilty pleasure of the month. It also came with a free satchel that’s most certainly going to be used with magickal results in the foreseeable future.

More of it because it’s so gorgeous ♥

Back to the fluorite! That shit is large and cheap! Well, you see, it’s kinda ugly because I was part of a larger stone and broke down the middle when they were trying to perforate it to make it into a pendant.

But check this hot babe out

W O R K I T

Coming back from the imports store, I paid a visit to my pot dealer erh I mean my herbs supplier. Got myself some ginger for $0.27

AND THEN

I SAW IT

Maybe they don’t package it like this in your country, but here this little shitty capsule is worth its weight in GOLD.

Y’all know what this is?

This is SAFFRON.

Now normally I steer fucking clear of things this expensive, but when I asked my dealer I mean the vendor she said it was on sale.

This stuff LITERALLY sold by FRACTIONS OF GRAMS. In this case that’s 0.2 grams of saffron, that’s 0.007 ounces. YES. ZERO POINT ZERO ZERO SEVEN. Insert here Bond reference

Retail price? Normally around $8 per capsule (EIGHT AMERICAN DOLLARS!)

How much on sale?

TWO DOLLARS.

A tip for the broke witch: hunt down for sales. Even if you don’t use the ingredients in your spells, you can still trade them with other witches or with anyone, really.

After this I went home and decided to try out my new candles.

And as I said, if you’re poor, you gotta get crafty!

I cut one of the candles in half. A part went to my pocket altar, and the other half

I used one of those ceramic saucers with the little erh… lower level circle in the middle?

USE CERAMIC. THIS IS IMPORTANT. IT RESISTS TEMPERATURE WELL AND YOU’RE GONNA NEED IT.

Melt the wax in the microwave or on the flame and then make sure it stays in the center of the saucer. Then take it out and wait until it cools down (or put it in the freezer if you are an impatient little shit). DO NOT LET IT SOLIDIFY COMPLETELY.

Then you take it out and use a round cookie cutter (or if you’re a cheap ass like me, find something else)

I just used the styling nozzle of my hair drying because F U K D A P O L I C E

Put it again in the freezer and once it’s completely solidified use a spatula because you, my dear witch

Just made yourself a moon wax amulet!

Engrave it with your sigils, place it on your altar, carefully soften the bottom with heat and use it as a seal, the possibilities are endless!

BUT WAIT, WHAT ABOUT THE REMNANTS!?

EVIL EYE WARD!

The rest? Melt it again or use it as a poppet in case you wanna cast a spell over an onion ring…

By the end of the day, our haul is:

-Altar cloth $0.55

-Herbs snips $0.55

-Mini-altar wooden box $1.70

-Dozen of blue candles $1.94

-Ginger root $0.27

-Satchel $0

-Snowflake obsidian $2.20

-Fluorite$ 0.27

-Onix $0.55

-Quartz crystal formation $4.50

-Saffron Capsule $2

A grand total of $14.53!

Of our budget of $15 we still have $0.47 that where I live is enough for the bus ride back home!

If we take away the unnecessarily pricey stuff (the quartz and the saffron) we got everything for $8.03!

Now if THAT’S not magick, I don’t know what is!

SOME FINAL TIPS!

1)      REUSE as many things as you can.


2)      MOVE THOSE FEET. I know it doesn’t sound appealing, but CHECK SEVERAL PLACES. Find the best prices by checking different stores and comparing.

3)      BE CREATIVE. If you find yourself in need of something you can’t afford, think and find a way to replace it or get it through other routes. As I said, witch trading is a thing!


4)      BARGAIN. There’s no shame in it, people! If you’re dealing with independent merchants and buy regularly/are buying a lot, try to get better prices! Don’t disrespect their business, though!


5)      REMEMBER YOUR MANTRA. Witchcraft requires NOTHING. Except you.

Now go out there and work your Magick!

-Semiramis, the Magpie Witchling

dating people with bpd

written by a girl who loves a girl who has bpd

disclaimer: i do not have bpd (borderline personality disorder) and this was written from my experience dating a beautiful girl who has bpd and she proof read it!! i just want to help others whose partners have bpd! this may not apply to everyone because everyone is different but these are things that i have experienced in my relationship!

1. TALK ABOUT BOUNDARIES
this is important for every relationship whether the person you are dating has bpd or not, but it’s crucial for when you’re dating a person with bpd. this is important because certain things that you may not even think about can make them sad or even a bit angry. it’s important to talk about what triggers them and be super understanding when their triggers seem a bit uncommon, and let them explain their boundaries and symptoms they experience. it’s important to be patient and listen to them.

2. TELL THEM WHAT’S REAL
some people with bpd have a blurred sense of reality and need to be told what’s real and what isn’t. even if it’s just the color of their jeans, it is still important.

3. REASSURE THEM
some individuals with bpd have an intense fear of being abandoned, which usually comes from early childhood abuse, and need constant validation to reassure them that you aren’t going to leave them. be patient when they ask if you wanna breakup with them, or if they ask if you’re mad at them, or when they say their sorry for even the slightest of mishaps.

4. DON’T BE SCARED
personality disorders have tons of bad stigma surrounding them and individuals with these mental illnesses are demonized and made out to be like monsters in the media. it is important to ignore all the articles and posts about bpd that demonize them written by neurotypicals. people with bpd aren’t inherently bad.

5. IMPULSES
impulses are things you want to do. some impulses can be self destructive while others are not. most people with bpd don’t have impulse control like those who don’t have bpd do. a thing that works for me when their impulses are self destructive is (assuming that you’re their fp) asking them how they would feel if i did that, or asking them to do virtually anything to take their mind off it. and if that doesn’t work, it’s important not to get mad at them if they do it. they don’t know when an idea is bad or good, so just be patient and understanding and don’t be a fuckass.

6. EDUCATE YOURSELF
educate yourself on the disorder and read about the symptoms. the best person to talk to about bpd is your partner. because everyone is different, it’s important not to limit bpd down to certain symptoms. figure out what your partner experiences and read about those. i suggest following the bpd tag on tumblr or even browse it a bit to get a general understanding of the disorder. bpd is very complex so it’s important that you get a general understanding and realize that it’s not relatable to you. certain posts may be relatable but do not think that you can reblog them, because the extent in which they are felt is extremely different. most people with bpd have very intense emotions and feel things that we feel to a much higher level.

to conclude, dating someone with bpd isn’t hard or scary. however, it is different from dating someone who doesn’t have it. it’ll be hard if you don’t research it or ask them questions or get a general understanding of it, but if you do it’ll be easier for the both of you. people with bpd aren’t inherently abusive, and it is possible to have a stable relationship with your partner.

Sea Witchery: a Brief Overview

Originally posted by mermaids-luv

At the request of so many followers, I have decided to mock up a little bit of information on Sea Magick and Sea Witchery.  This is just a brief overview to give you some information when wanting to research or begin working with the ocean, storms, the tides, and the many creatures associated with the sea. 

However, I will caution you that the many sea creatures (especially the Merfolk) are not very forgiving creatures, thus they can be pretty tough to handle for beginner, baby witches.  It takes an experience sea hag to get them to cooperate properly, so keep this in mind when studying them.

Once again, this is a brief overview and introduction to my craft and path.  if you have any questions, you can direct them to me via PM or ASK.

Let’s get started!

WHAT IS A SEA WITCH?

Traditionally, sea witches are witches who appear among sailors or others involved in the seafaring trade. Sea witches use witchcraft related to the moon, tides, and the weather, and are believed to have complete control over the seas. Many sailors fell prey to the sea witches curse on ships and were finally delivered to the one who rules all.  In some folklore, sea witches are described as phantoms, ghosts,or in the form of a mermaid. These creatures would then have the power to control the fates of ships and seamen.

As the name implies, sea witches are believed to be able to control many aspects of nature relating to water, most commonly the ocean or sea. However, in more modern times, sea witches can also practice witchcraft on or near any source of water: lakes, rivers, bath tubs, or even simply a bowl of salt water.

In addition to their powers over water, sea witches could often control the wind. A common feature of many tales was a rope tied into three knots, which witches often sold to sailors to aid them on a voyage. Pulling the first knot could yield a gentle, southeasterly wind, while pulling two could generate a strong northerly wind.

Sea witches often improvise on what they have, rather than making purchases from a store or from another person. Common tools include clam, scallop, or oyster shells in place of bowls or cauldrons. Other items include seaweed, fishing net, shells, sea grass, driftwood, pieces of sea glass, and even sand.

Other types of titles they use are: sirens, water witches, storm witches, and sea hags.

DO SEA WITCHES HAVE CERTAIN PERSONALITY TRAITS?

Eh, there isn’t really a specific type of person the sea calls to, however I have met many sea witches that would be described as walking contradictions.  Much like the sea, we can be quite flexible, but also forceful.  Moods tend to fluctuate with the tides and lunar cycle.  Hags both enjoy and love music and poetry; are quite expressive with their emotions, but also don’t easily award entry into their hearts; and can easily win the attention of a crowd, but then seek solitude in the comfort of their own homes.  You would be hard-pressed to find a stagnant sea witch–they’ll always be on the move, searching and discovering.  However, be warned: if you fall in love with one you must understand that a sea hag’s heart belongs to the Sea first and foremost, forever and always, and it calls to them over the span of lifetimes.

WHERE DOES THEIR POWER COME FROM?

For the most part, sea witches draw their power directly from the source: the Ocean.  You’ll find that many of them, even landlocked sea hags, have trinkets from the shore and enjoy baths, storms, and the moonlight.  Of course, there are many different kinds of sea witches all over the world and it really just depends on what seafaring folk culture they subscribe to that determines their power source.

DO SEA WITCHES HAVE SPECIFIC DEITIES THEY WORSHIP?

I am not even lying–there are HUNDREDS upon HUNDREDS of water and sea deities that sea witches call upon for aid and worship.  Probably the most popular would be Poseidon, Neptune, Lir, Gong-Gong, Hapi, Sobek,  Agwé, Aegaeon, Delphin, the Gorgons, Samundra, Pariacaca, Watatsumi, Rongomai, Njord, Nix, and even Davey Jones.

One of the beauties of being a sea witch is that you can call on many ancient and powerful deities to aid you in your craft.  However, I do advise that you make sure that these deities do not come from a culture/religion/belief system that is closed.  You can check out a full list of water/sea/storm deities here.

WHAT ARE SOME TOOLS SEA WITCHES USE?

*TAKES A DEEP BREATH*

Water (salt, fresh, or storm), sand, sea shells and cockles, sea glass, driftwood, ship wood, compasses, maps, mirrors, bowls and chalices, sea weed, sea grass, fish and fish bones, coral, telescopes, sand dollars, pearls, bath salts/bombs/goodies, sea salt, linen, umbrellas and mops, windchimes, ropes, weather vanes, and blood are just some of the few tools we use in our practice.

TELL US ABOUT MERMAIDS!

The Mer or Merfolk are probably one of the more popular topics when it comes to sea witchery.  I get questions all the time like “DO YOU TALK TO MERMAIDS?” or “HOW CAN I GET A MERMAID TO BEFRIEND ME?” or “AREN’T MERMAIDS JUST THE COOLEST?”

The Merfolk are an integral part of sea witch culture, but they aren’t the end all be all when it comes to water spirits/fae/demons/entities.  There are so many to work with and all have interesting backstories.  But let’s talk about the Merfolk for a moment…

Depending to what you school you subscribe to, the Merfolk (also known as mermaids) could be fae, demon, or simply water spirits.  Some believe that  the Merfolk are a species of kithain (also known as changeling or fae.) Ancient and unknowable, the Merfolk pose something of a problem to both fae and human alike. The arrogance of the mer is tempered only by their truly alien natures.  The Merfolk claim that they are the sole legacy of the Tuatha De Danann, the oldest fae on Earth, dreamed long before any human ever set foot on land. When curious people ask how this could be, the merfolk are disconcertingly vague and ambiguous.

As I have stated before on the blog, the Merfolk are certainly an odd lot. The product of a totally alien mindset, the mer are simultaneously deadly, serious and playful, highly ritualized and completely free spirited, repressed and yet libidinous as a drunken prom date. The first thing one will notice about a mer is his incredible arrogance. Of course, as far as they are concerned, they have every right to be arrogant. After all, in their minds, they do rule the world.

Other mythologies tell us that mermaids are the bane of seamen.  These half-fish, half-women lured countless sailors to their deaths. Breathtakingly beautiful humans from their torso-upwards, their lower bodies where those of fish, complete with scales. Men find their songs irresistible and follow them willingly into the sea. Mermaids can be caught and held in exchange for the wishes they grant. The males of the species, Mermen, are regarded as vicious creatures who raised storms for the purpose of sinking men’s ships.  Occasionally they are successfully courted by human men. The offspring of such pairings are often granted great powers in healing by their mothers.

In short, mermaids are extremely beautiful, temperamental, powerful, and dangerous.  They are not to be confused with Sirens, either, and find contempt at the very accusation.  I will probably go into more detail about Merfolk magic in a different post.

WHAT ARE OTHER WATER SPIRITS THAT WE CAN WORK WITH?

Again, like the deities, there are so many different kinds of water spirits and this topic in of itself could be an entire article.  So, here is a brief list and some traits about my favorites…

SIRENS

In Greek mythology, the Sirens (Greek singular: Σειρήν Seirēn; Greek plural: Σειρῆνες Seirēnes) were dangerous creatures, who lured nearby sailors with their enchanting music and voices to shipwreck on the rocky coast of their island. Roman poets placed them on some small islands called Sirenum scopuli. In some later, rationalized traditions, the literal geography of the “flowery” island of Anthemoessa was somewhere tucked in a cape, with rocky shores and cliffsides.

Sirens were believed to combine women and birds in various ways. In early Greek art, Sirens were represented as birds with large women’s heads, bird feathers and scaly feet. Later, they were represented as female figures with the legs of birds, with or without wings, playing a variety of musical instruments, especially harps.

UNDINES

These are the elemental spirits of water. Their magic centers upon this element, whose course and function they can control. Undines exist within the water itself and cannot be seen with normal human vision. Their homes are typically within the coral caves in lakes or upon the banks of rivers, though smaller undines may choose to live under lily pads. Their appearance is similar to human beings in most cases, with the exception of those living in smaller streams or ponds. Undine clothing is shimmery, reflecting all the colors of water though green is typically the predominant color.Every body of water is home to undines, from ocean waves, to rocky pools, to marshlands, to rivers, to lakes and ponds. Even waterfalls and fountains have an undine living in their midst.

SELKIES

The shapeshifting selkies, who are also known as silkies or roane (Gaelic for seal), occupy the seas surrounding the Orkney and Shetland isles. The exact nature of their undersea world is uncertain, though some believe it to be encased in giant air bubbles. Their true forms are those of faeries or humans, though they take the form of large seals when traveling the through the oceans. In particular: great seals and grey seals are said to take human forms. Older tales tell that selkies are only able to take on human forms on certain nights of the year, such as Midsummer’s Eve or All Hallows.

Occasionally they encounter humankind, sometimes becoming their mates. A human male may take a selkie female as his wife if he finds her seal skin on the beach and hides it from her. In the end she always recovers the skin and returns to the sea, though she may return occasionally to watch over her human family from the safety of the waves.

A human woman may bear the child of a selkie male if she weeps seven tears or seven drops of blood in the nighttime sea. Such relationships are rarely lasting. Seven years hence, the selkie would return for his child, offering the mother a fee for nursing her own babe.

BEANSIDHE/BANSHEE

One of the most dreaded and best known of the Irish faeries is the Banshee, properly named the Beansidhe literally, “woman fairy.” The Irish have many names for her (perhaps they feared invocation of her true name may invoke her presence?) They included: Washer of the Shrouds, Washer at the Banks, Washer at the Ford and the Little Washer of Sorrow. The Scottish called her Cointeach, literally “one who keens.” To the cornish she was Cyhiraeth and to the Welsh either Cyoerraeth or Gwrach y Rhibyn, which translates as “Hag of the Dribble” (to the Welsh she sometimes appear as a male). In Brittany her name is Eur-Cunnere Noe.

The Beansidhe is an extremely beautiful faery, possessing long, flowing hair, red eyes (due to continuous weeping) and light complexions. They typically donn green dresses with gray cloaks. Their wailing foretells of a death nearby, though it never causes such a death (which is why they are wrongly feared.) 

As her other names might suggest, she frequently appears as a washerwoman at the banks of streams. In these cases, she is called the Bean Nighe (pronounced “ben-neeyah”). The clothing she washed takes different forms depending upon the legend. Sometimes it is burial shrouds, others it is the bloodstained clothing of those who will soon die. This particular version of the Bean Sidhe is Scottish in origin and unlike the Irish version, she is extremely ugly, sometimes described as having a single nostril, one large buck tooth, webbed feet and extremely long breasts, which she must throw over her shoulders to prevent them getting in the way of her washing . Her long stringy hair is partially covered with a hood and a white gown or shroud is her main wardrobe. The skin of the Beansidhe is often wet and slimy as if she had just been pulled from a moss covered lake. They are rumored to be the ghosts of women who died in childbirth and will continue to wash until the day they should have died. The keening music of Irish wakes, called caoine, is said to have been derived from the wails of the Beansidhe.

WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT LESSON TO TAKE AWAY FROM THIS?

The Sea giveth and the Sea taketh away.  The sea is both mother and reaper, passionate and cold, serene and turbulent, loving and cruel, generous and vicious.  And if you meet a sea witch, you’ll know this to be true:

Neither chains of steel, nor chains of love, can keep her from the Sea.

satanslesbianmother  asked:

I am creating a black female character for a story that takes place in an area where...well, she's surrounded by white people who are almost obsessively politically correct, to the point of enforcing "colorblindness." I feel it's important to her character and to authenticity for her to react to her white friends being intimidated around the subject of race, but I don't want to end up writing the white person's "ideal black response" unintentionally. Any pointers?

Black Girl Living in a “Colorblind” Environment

Hey there,

Wooow, that’s like my entire life over here. Yes, I do have some pointers, but they’ll mostly just be my thoughts and experiences. Not everyone will have the same reactions as I do, but I hope this will help.

Internalized Racism

So I’ll just start by saying this is the perfect breeding ground for internalized racism. It is an everyday thing so subtle, so normalized absolutely every time, that the racism is hardly ever recognized for what it is. If your character is somewhat like me or people I know, they will struggle with the urge to not stand out, try to assimilate into the dominant culture or distance themselves from their culture(s) at the expense of their own identity, feeling the need to compensate and deflect stereotypes. They’ll be gaslit left and right, and replying with anything other than silence or agreement will most of the time start discussions or fights. They might at times feel like they’re living a lie, feel out of place and start questioning themselves. There’s more but you get the gist of it.

Reactions to Environment

Now most reactions will come down to: 

1) completely rejecting the white people and their culture,

2) trying to become like the white people and take on their views, 

3) or social withdrawal. 

What they all have in common is A LOT of unease surrounding your roots, your race and expressing your true self. 

Daily Struggles

There will be a lot of tension and anxiety when matters of race surface, even when they don’t end up mentioned or discussed. Feeling like you don’t belong, that you’ll only be accepted as long as you keep your mouth shut about racism.

Feeling unsafe comes to mind. I imagine your character desperately searching for people who might be different, looking for friends of color online, trying to make sense of their experiences by searching online, that sort of thing. If they do try to express themselves it’s because that person gives them the feeling that they just might be a bit more understanding than others and might get into discussions desperately trying for them to understand them. I imagine them not wanting to be seen as a stereotype while not wanting their race/roots/ethnicity pushed aside. High chances they will be passive aggressive about it because they lack any other meaningful way to express themselves. 

Of course there will be Black and brown people who’re content with assimilating into a culture like this. Good for them. But plenty of people also force themselves to believe that in order to survive. 

That’s what most of it comes down to. Surviving an environment that’s hostile towards you while it masquerades as your dear friend. 

~ Mod Alice

Daily Struggles - Racism & Racial Tension

In middle school, I had this friend. I was telling her a story involving someone else when she asked a strangely-worded question. 

“Did she look like you or me?” 

I was all “huh” until she pointed to my arm, my skin.

“Like you…” She said, then pointed to her own arm. “Or like me?”

I instantly fed off of the race-is-scary vibe and just muttered “Oh, like you…”

I grew up in a slightly less intense version of Alice’s environment, and my experience was passive-aggressive racism (micro-aggressions) with both the micro-aggressions and aggressive racism brushed over and kept low key. (That lady moved her purse when you walked by because she thinks you’ll steal it? Nah, she just needed it to warm her lap!)

I rarely felt the heat of racism. It wasn’t as blatant. Still, it happened in pockets.

Daily “racial tension” would be stares in public because seeing a Black person in the supermarket was a marvel. At school and other frequented places, well, they get used to you, so unless you’re the very new kid, it’s not likely she’d be made awkward on the day-to-day for existing (At least not until slavery is discussed and everyone is turning their heads to stare at her..).

Colorblind Environment and Balancing Culture

Alice hit the main points. Some reject the dominant culture, some embrace it (and may even allow and make race jokes at their own expense to cope) and some withdraw completely. I don’t think anyone fits into any neat category. 

Consider that your character may fall on a scale of embracing her situation, and rejecting some aspects. No one person is the same. 

I think background and home life will affect how she copes in this environment. I moved into my super-white town at a pretty young age, prior to that growing up in a culturally-diverse city and had sisters who did as well. We were able to embrace our culture at home among each other and other family even if that openness could not be experienced with most people in the neighborhood. If I’d been older before I moved, I probably wouldn’t have given a damn a bit more, or rejected more of the environment’s culture, but hey. 

Either way, it’s very possible for her to blend and embrace more than one culture. But how one embraces or how much, depends on the person.

Now, embracing different culture depending on the environment and code-switching doesn’t mean you’re at a cultural crisis or both sides cannot co-exist. For example, while I was made awkward about race in one experience, around that same age and time, I brought a bigger celebration of Black History Month to that same school by approaching administration on the severe lack of it. With permission and the help of friends, we made posters and announcements celebrating prominent Black leaders and inventors. That would not have happened if I didn’t have cultural pride being nourished elsewhere.

In Short

With maturity, self-realization, getting away from that environment and/or connecting with a knowledgeable and accepting group of people comes accepting what living in the dominant culture has made you, and hopefully embracing and not losing the culture you might’ve experienced without its influence.

As always, we’d also recommend having appropriate beta-readers take a look at your story for sensitivity and accuracy.

~Mod Colette

P.S. Based on some responses defending colorblindness as a good thing, which it’s not and is in fact racist (!) I would urge you to research the harms of the colorblind approach and learn of the huge disservice it is to People of Color to ignore the beauty that is diversity and in recognizing cultural differences.

PSA: “Seeing color” isn’t the same as “judging color.” 

Won’t dwell on it here. I do want to quote mod Brei from a different ask

Colorblindness is an act of racism by denying to acknowledge differences. I mean, no one ever says “I don’t see gender” so why apply such ignorance to race?

((THANK YOU FOR 10,000 FOLLOWERS!!!

holy shit guys i hit 10k last night and im just so so so incredibly astounded and bewildered and emotional?

this blog was a bit of an art experiment for me and tbh i did not expect it to get as big as it did? i just wanted to work on poses and expressions and explore these boys wellbeing and brains a bit and, the response to this blog has been astroundingly extremely huge and postive.

ive met so so so many amazing friends through this blog, and ive grown so much as an artist because of this blog, and ive been able to help myself mentally because of this blog. running guyslikeus has been the biggest honor and i legitimately have a really fun time answering asks and drawing comics

i just want to say thank you so much. thank you to everyone who sends me dms, thank u to everyone who reblogs, thank u for ur cute tags, thank u for telling ur pals about my blog, thank you for all your support

keep it real guys, thanks for making me smile and having as fun as i have with this blog  💕 💕 💕 ))

If Styles hadn’t yet adapted to global social-media attention, he was tested in 2012, when he met Taylor Swift at an awards show. Their second date, a walk in Central Park, was caught by paparazzi. Suddenly the couple were global news. They broke up the next month, reportedly after a rocky Caribbean vacation; the romance was said to have ended with at least one broken heart.

The relationship is a subject he’s famously avoided discussing. “I gotta pee first. This might be a long one,” he says. He rises to head to the bathroom, then adds, “Actually, you can say, ‘He went for a pee and never came back.‘ ”


He returns a couple of minutes later. “Thought I’d let you stew for a while,” he says, laughing, then takes a gulp of green juice. He was surprised, he says, when photos from Central Park rocketed around the world. “When I see photos from that day,” he says, “I think: Relationships are hard, at any age. And adding in that you don’t really understand exactly how it works when you’re 18, trying to navigate all that stuff didn’t make it easier. I mean, you’re a little bit awkward to begin with. You’re on a date with someone you really like. It should be that simple, right? It was a learning experience for sure. But at the heart of it – I just wanted it to be a normal date.”


He’s well aware that at least two of Swift’s songs – “Out of the Woods” and “Style” – are considered to be about their romance. (“You’ve got that long hair slicked back, white T-shirt,” she sang in “Style.”) “I mean, I don’t know if they’re about me or not …” he says, attempting gallant discretion, “but the issue is, she’s so good, they’re bloody everywhere.” He smiles. “I write from my experiences; everyone does that. I’m lucky if everything [we went through] helped create those songs. That’s what hits your heart. That’s the stuff that’s hardest to say, and it’s the stuff I talk least about. That’s the part that’s about the two people. I’m never going to tell anybody everything.” (Fans wondered whether “Perfect,” a song Styles co-wrote for One Direction, might have been about Swift: “And if you like cameras flashing every time we go out/And if you’re looking for someone to write your breakup songs about/Baby, I’m perfect.”)


Was he able to tell her that he admired the songs? “Yes and no,” he says after a long pause. “She doesn’t need me to tell her they’re great. They’re great songs … It’s the most amazing unspoken dialogue ever.”


Is there anything he’d want to say to Swift today? “Maybe this is where you write down that I left!” He laughs, and looks off. “I don’t know,” he finally says. “Certain things don’t work out. There’s a lot of things that can be right, and it’s still wrong. In writing songs about stuff like that, I like tipping a hat to the time together. You’re celebrating the fact it was powerful and made you feel something, rather than ‘this didn’t work out, and that’s bad.’ And if you run into that person, maybe it’s awkward, maybe you have to get drunk … but you shared something. Meeting someone new, sharing those experiences, it’s the best shit ever. So thank you.”

—  Harry Styles talking about Taylor Swift - Rolling Stone May 2017 (x)
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@therealjacksepticeye Hi Jack, I’m a little bit late, but I want to congratulate you for achieving 15 million subcribers. :) It’s a crazy number, and when I imagine that I’m a member of a community that has more people than the population of my country is, so it’s incredible. :) But you really deserve it, because I can tell you, that I’m watching youtube for several years, but the whole time I’ve never seen a youTuber who does so much for the people just like you do. :) Although I know that I probably never meet you, but  I really appreciate that I was able to experience this wonderful community, and especially that I could know a person like you. I would hope that you’ll discover my message. :) You’re a nice man Jack and I thank you very much for being there for us. :)

Unlucky Nine: A list of antis you may or may not have encountered in the vld fandom

Start Note: When I mention [Ship Name] Anti, it means a shipper of that ship who is also anti of another ship mentioned depending on the context as opposed to Anti-[Ship Name] which is someone who is an anti of the ship mentioned.

I. “Ship K/ance or Sha//ura or my ship instead” anti

These antis are just assholes. They insult other ships that contend to their own. These antis are prevalent in Sheith, Kallura and sometimes Shidge tags.

You get K/ance antis calling Sheith yaoi culture but then they totally change Keith and Lance’s character to fit the same trope. I was so pissed the other day because someone took Lance and just shoved Uke™ on him to fit an AU where he crushes on Keith.

You got K/ance & Sha//ura antis calling Kallura heteronormative but we aren’t the ones who’re forcing a mom troupe on her despite her not being really motherly. (Hunk is the mom friend but let us forget the fat character for aesthetics) You get them saying they love Allura but her story line, which focuses on her duty and willingness to sacrifice anything for it, is shoved for some romance. (Allura, although possibly having some romantic take to it, did not save Shiro because she had a fucking crush on him. She saved him because he needed saving and she viewed his role to Voltron as more important than hers.Stop acting like it is a canon romantic scene. No real scene in Voltron is really inherently romantic.)

You got K/ance shouting if Kallura happens, there won’t be any representation (m/m) but we still got Shiro, Lance and Hunk. Yes, we still got Shunk, Shance and Hance. if we go poly, there is Shunce. And if we dig deeper and you are willing, add Coran into the mix(I’m shoran trash undeniably).

You got them saying Shidge is wrong but the most official thing we got is actually the OFFICIAL Voltron site (whose content probably was made known to the entire crew and was advertised to the general public) saying ‘5 teens.’ But let us dwell on a half-baked video where a person throws numbers into some of the crew’s mouths. Let us not dwell on how Allura has no one bit of an age meter. For all we know, she could be a centuries old Alien. But sure why not, dwell on Shidge.

They put their ships on high pedestals to trample on other ships but you are probably a hateful bitch when you call them out on their shit.

II. “Shiro is spacedad” anti (bonus points for Allura as space mom)

These antis believe Shiro is a grandpa. They seem him as a father figure which would have been okay because let us admit that at some point the space dad joke were funny UNTIL PEOPLE TOOK THEM SERIOUSLY. Unlike the typical fan who laugh at the jab, these people take things to far and actually think it is canon. Shiro is actually a dad. “How dare you hc Shiro as a young and vulnerable character instead of my perfect space dad™?” All that crap.

But if you remember Prisoner Shiro, Kerberos Shiro, he looks pretty young. If you change back his hair before the frosty tips, remove the scar and the buff bara bod (he probably got from fighting in the ring), you wouldn’t find him looking wise beyond his years.

Coupled with Canon™ Space Mom Allura, it just pisses me off. Allura is enigmatic, a bit impulsive but her impulses are mostly practical, not afraid to jump into action, a bit bossy and domineering at times, yes, but deep down inside Allura is just a princess who wants her life back, who wants to live in peace with pretty things like her Altean flowers, who wants to go shopping for sparkly things, and maybe experiment with cute hairstyles.

This is why it kinda pisses me off. The idea was cute. Heck, I made an entire Sha//ura au once with my friend with the whole vld family thing but when they just pushed for it on discourse and acted like it was some holy canon grail, I was just really seven levels of salt.

III. “Pidge is like 4 months old” anti

These antis just infatalize Pidge. “Pidge is a kid. She can’t make romance decision. Pidge is practically a baby. How dare u” and all that shit. But it is totally fine for someone you see as a ‘kid’ to be flying an alien warship and engaging in an intergalactic war? Same goes for those who infantalize other Paladins. The logic is flawed enough but something else really pissed me off in this one.

My main concern with this is that the blatant forcefulness that Pidge is young because she has all the stereotypical looks of younger people. It undermines short girls who never grow up to be tall and developed upfront. Some people never get hit with puberty right. I was thirteen and 5′1 and now I’m  nineteen and guess what? 5′1.5. Where is the justice puberty? You didn’t hit me up. You just poked me with a stick once and left.

And just the other day, guess what? I was again assumed to be like fourteen, especially since I was standing right next to my tree of a younger brother who is like sixteen. I probably would be rich right now if i had a dollar for every single person who thought I was fourteen. Pidge may look young by stereotypical standards, sure. But that doesn’t mean she is. She could just be a short 19 year old.

The concept of child-coded is bullshit. I mean look, I look, by stereotypical anti standard, like a fourteen year old therefore when tall people my age or older (who coincidentally also fit the stereotypical adult look standard) theoretically like me, we are perpetuating pedophilia. If we start dating, since they are adult-coded and I’m child-coded, it’s almost as if it is already pedophilia.

If anything, the infantalization of Pidge showed me that people, yes I repeat, people will continue to be misogynistic to women who do not fit the stereotype of what a woman should be. I mean, when did height and cupsize amount to a woman’s age and maturity as a person? It just says you have to fit this shitty standard to be something and to be recognized and that is fucking bullshit.

Oh well, to the antis, I guess I’ll be a minor forever. And to end this segment with another one of your fave defenses, “I”M MINOR-CODED AND CHILD-CODED SO YOU CAN’T ATTACK ME UWU”

IV. “Shiro’s trauma is an issue” anti

This is by far the one of the things I’ve seen. These people say that because Shiro experienced some traumatizing shit, he is not eligible for a relationship with any of the Paladins. It basically says that because Shiro has ptsd, he can’t date anyone who is potentially(meaning they see this character as young or immature and they aren’t actually as such) less mature™ or younger than he is. It basically says that since Shiro has ptsd, he must be toxic by default. It thrives upon the logic that anyone with mental health issues is gonna be toxic in relationships. (except Sha//ura cuz apparently Shiro who they call toxic in all other relationships isn’t toxic there)

V. “go fucking kill yourself” anti

No explanations needed. Assholes with no regard for human life. Suicide baiting, Gas lighting, you name it. Best thing to do is just block these. No arguing with them.

VI. “I’m a minor/survivor/minority group so I am allowed to be an asshole to anyone” anti

These are the people who go and attack others but when you call them out on their shit, they go like “but we are a minor/survivor/part of a minority.”

I’m only gonna say this once so listen well. (Who am I kidding? I’ve stressed this so much.) Being a minor/survivor/minority does not excuse you from being an asshole. You can experience terrible things and be like fourteen but you can still be an asshole. It does not give you a free pass to ruin other people’s lives. Get that inside your head. Someone can be depressed and still be an asshole. Someone can be autistic and still be an asshole. Someone can be gay and still be an asshole. Someone can be part of a general minority group and still be an asshole. Their status as a minor/minority/survivor DOES NOT make them an asshole but this specific person, who coincidentally fits in a certain group, is just an asshole. Their status is merely circumstantial and not the root of their being an asshole therefor it must not be used as an excuse for them to be one.

VII. “Shaladin is okay except for Shidge ft. Ship Sh/att instead” anti

I’m like WHY? These antis act like they are allies and they are good™ but they throw Shidge under the bus and vilify it to somehow make other shaladin ships appeal to the anti standards. You draw the line in Shidge? Well, I draw the line in vilifying ships to put yours on a pedestal. I would’ve understood if it was just basic ‘I don’t like Shidge’ but no, it has to rhyme with the anti logic of infantalizing her and all those things.

And don’t let me get started on Sh/att. Cuz it just shattered all the hope of me getting into this ship. This was good, old friends trope, I couldn’t save you trope. You name it. It has all the layers of angst that normally i would dive into. But the shippers use the same rhetoric shaladin antis use on Shidge. “It’s shidge but gay” Do you know how misogynistic you sound? And how dare you think I ship my ship because ‘aesthetics uwu’.

The idea of throwing Shidge out to appeal to the antis like some sacrificial lamb is just anti rhetoric itself. “It’s okay if one ships takes the fall for us.” It’s just pointing fingers at someone, in this case some ship. And honestly, that sucks.

VIII. “I’m gonna misuse social justice to call you all these names and not appreciate social justice when it is working against me” anti

These antis are those who try to shit on ships by appealing to twisted social justice but the moment actual social justice works against them, they try to ignore it and you just know, it was never a social issue to begin with.

A perfect example of this are the “Bi Lance for K/ance” antis. They shout and tell the world,”we got Bi Lance, we got a bi character in our ship. Whoop Whoop representation” but moment someone goes “oh nice, I ship Lance with Allura/Pidge/Nyma/Plaxum/any girl in existence.” They jump at you and call you cis het scum or whatever. But Lance is Bi right? Don’t Bi people like umm girls too???? Yes??? Do you know what a bi is?????

You see, they actually don’t care about bi representational at all unless it is used to put their ships up. And don’t get me started on the hate for ‘Bi Keith.’ I know the idea of Gay Keith is a fan fave but Bi Keith is a possibility. Like Bi Lance is everything to the universe but you are suddenly Zarkon if you as much think about Bi Keith. You love bi representation so much don’t you?

Oh and the antis who go like “we are protecting survivors and minors” just as they attack survivors and minors. Good job on the protecting.

Everything these antis do is just plain crap. When you untangle their twisted social justice and see the ulterior motives, you see their actions for what they are, personal vendettas against shippers, attacks so that whatever shitty ship they have gets to trample on other ships.

IX. “fiction is reality” anti

These are just antis who thrive on the idea that fictitious content is actually reality and therefore every dark-themed content is evil.

Tell me why I’m not marking Priests with hot iron stamps fresh from flames and killing them? I read Angels and Demons. Tell me why I’m not suddenly killing humans and eating them? I watched Hannibal. Tell me how I haven’t butchered the person I like? I watched School Days + Higurashi and I was like thirteen, a minor yes, at the time. Tell me how I’m not suddenly taking people in strange boats and making them go through hell, I was eight, a fucking kid, I watched Jigoku Shoujo (Hell Girl). They are unanswerable because fiction is in fact not reality.

The idea that fiction is reality is just the same as how way back four or so years ago, there was a backlash in gaming like with fighting and guns because it supposedly perpetuates violence and supposedly hypnotizes people. And you know how stupid that idea is? That is how stupid the idea that ‘fiction’ is reality’ in fandom is.

And if you actually do think fiction is reality, I suggest you seek medical help.

End Note: Antis may appeal to other forms of attacks or a mix of these but you guys stay strong and safe.

Part 6 of my Studyblr University Orientation Week

I see a lot of people on studyblr talking about dealing with stress and anxiety over grades and perfectionism, but not a lot of discussion of being mentally ill and in university/college. So if you’re looking for stress reduction stuff, this post is not for you. This is for my mentally ill peeps. 

I just want to preface this with a little disclaimer. This is based on my own experience. I have depression, anxiety, ADD and OCD. I don’t know everything. I still have a lot of trouble coping, particularly with the last two as they were only recently diagnosed. This is just meant to be a few useful tips that might help a little bit. 

  • Go see a therapist. Even if you think you’re doing okay, it’s still good to have that support system there if you need it. Your therapist can also give you coping mechanisms that are tailored to your specific needs. They may also suggest you go on medication or refer you to a doctor who can prescribe it. 

  • If you are taking medication, set a reminder on your phone so that you take it at the same time every day. 

  • Set about sixteen alarms in the morning, starting half an hour before you want to wake up and spread about five to ten minutes apart. If you’re anything like me and have a lot of trouble getting to sleep, you probably have a lot of trouble getting up in the morning. This technique is a lifesaver. Also change up the alarm ~once a month. I find that my body gets used to it after a while and I just sleep right through it. 

  • Register with your school’s disability services. Yes, your mental illness is a disability. They’ll be able to help with accommodations (this could be anything from extra time on exams to extensions on your assignments). 

  • If you think that you might be handing in a paper late because depression is kicking your ass, message your professor at least a week in advance. If you tell them two days before, they’re not going to care. And if you end up not needing the extension, that’s okay. It’s better for it to be there if you need it. 

  • Headphones. Everywhere. People are stupid and loud and it’s overwhelming as fuck. Wear them right up until the prof starts lecturing. Do NOT wear them during the lecture though, your prof will hate you - though you may be able to discuss it with your prof the first week. idk, maybe you have cool profs who get it. 

  • Make a friend in your class that you can get notes from in case you can’t get out of bed. I mean this is good for anyone in case of illness in general, but yeah. Depression. Woohoo. 

  • It’s okay if you need to take a lighter course load because of your mental health. Loads of people do it. 

  • Related: It’s okay if you take 5+ years to complete your degree. You’ll get there. 

  • AD(H)D friends who stim: That’s super great and you totally should. But please do not leg bounce when you’re at a desk that has all the chairs connected to it. You will shake everybody’s seat and distract them. I get the urge to leg bounce (fuck, I’m leg bouncing rn) but please try a different stim if you could. Or bounce gently. Just no earthquakes (no joke, I literally thought it was an earthquake once and was super confused why no one else was panicking. i learned nothing that day, I was so distracted). 

  • Fidget toys are the best things ever and you can use them in lecture (provided they don’t make too much noise because your prof might yell at you for that). 

  • Bathrooms are your new best friend for panic attacks. Hide in a stall and take a few deep breaths to calm down. There’s a lot less noise there and you’re less likely to be disturbed than if you go to a stairwell. 

  • Breathe in for 5, hold for 5, out for 7. 

  • 5-4-3-2-1: Find five things in the room that are blue. Four things that are yellow. Three that are pink. Two that are purple. One that is green. You can substitute this with any colours you like. You can also do ones like “think of five things that start with f (and so on)” or “five tv shows that you like, four books, etc.” if you’re somewhere without a lot of colours (or in your handy bathroom stall). Repeat with new criteria or new answers until calm. 

  • If you’ve been crying and don’t want people to know: grab some paper towels, run some cold water on them. Wipe your eyes with them. Pat your cheeks with them. It makes less of a mess than splashing your face will and I find that it helps me a lot more. 

  • Schedule the shit out of your life. You won’t forget important meetings or things like eating dinner (whoops). 

  • Make sure that you give yourself plenty of breaks during the day. Gotta conserve that energy, yo. 

  • Find out when the library’s quietest and grab your books then. Same deal with the bookstore at the beginning of the year and buying your books. Please, the bookstore is scary when it’s busy. Save yourself. 

  • Frozen dinners are cheap, easy to make, and require next to no energy. Same with cereal, ramen, and most pasta. And egg sandwiches (two eggs, hot sauce, and mayonnaise. Best thing ever.). 

  • Great questions to ask the people who sit next to you in class: What’s your name (preface this with “Hi, I’m *blank*”)? What are you studying? Where are you from? How are you liking the class? 

  • If you’re having trouble getting started, try for ten minutes. You may find that it’s easy to keep going after that. Or maybe you’ll need to stop but at least you’ll have gotten ten minutes of work in. 

  • You’re doing great. This is a really hard thing that you’re doing right now, but you’ve got it. 
Luna Lovegood, Hogwarts Librarian
  • Adds student publications to the catalog- like zines, club minutes, even notes for classes that haven’t much changed in years (Professor Binns, we’re all looking at you.)
    • Adds MUGGLE PUBLICATIONS to the collection
    • It all started with this one kid and a comic book. They may be Luna’s favorite student, ever. 
  • Recording commentary for quidditch matches so that kids who miss them- due to detentions, studying, or just plain anxiety- can hear how it all happened
  • Recording oral accounts of the battle of Hogwarts. 
    • And then on and back as far as she can get anything for. The war, times before that. Even mundane things. 
    • She finally gets the stories of each of the ghosts hanging out. It eases a lot of muggleborns’ minds to know a little bit about these people who are past but not gone. 
  • Making a book that works something like google- all text of everything in the library is recorded, and by speaking a few key words to the book, it will tell you what book(s) you need, what page, where to find them, etc. It will also say “Listen just ask Professor Longbottom about this, I don’t have anything for you” or “our library doesn’t have anything about why you want to kiss girls, Jane, but Miss Lovegood has actual experience with this, why don’t you ask her?”
    • This book, of course, will tell you that the book you want is in the restricted section. It will still tell you exactly what page you need, though, so there’s none of that “welllllllll, it must be in the restricted section, but I don’t know where……” nonsense. It puts a lot of teachers at ease and helps them sort out students who want to Learn and students who want to get in trouble
  • Changes the charms on books from beating students for doodling in them, to calmly explaining why it’s better that you Not doodle in the 500 year old book that is not Yours, Dear
    • Provides doodling supplies so students have an outlet that isn’t 500 years old
  • Spends holidays painting murals on every wall and the ends of the big shelves. She enlists different teachers for sections that apply to their subjects and hobbies for ideas on what to paint. The history section is legendary for depictions of the giant wars and various scenes from Merlin’s life. 
    • (She also enlists students who don’t have anywhere to go over the winter break. The parties in the library are a secret well kept, but only because these kids who have so little deserve something special)
  • The herbology section is actually draped in various vines that, if you ask nicely, will reshelve books for you. Though everyone agrees that if you want the books back where they really belong, it’s best to water the vines. 
  • The library becomes a place to escape, not just study and/or fear for your life
  • McGonagall has pretty much never been more proud of anyone she’s ever hired
  • Luna and Neville and McGonagall have tea every Thursday
    • And other days in between, but Thursday is a set date
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Living in Mexico, I experience a great deal of huge contrasts and they make me wonder a lot of things, question those things, and make me want to be a part of the debate. [x]

Advice for native speakers of a language when encountering foreigners learning their language

Of course this is aimed at people who want to help others learn their native language. It’s based on personal experiences from when I first came to France. If the language learner you meet is advanced and speaks fluently you might not have to do any of these. But I think they’re good to keep in mind when meeting new language learners.

1. Slow down a bit. Don’t do that thing often shown in movies where people speak super loud and as if in slow motion. Speaking super slow doesn’t help much with understanding or learning and shouting is useless unless you’re in a noisy environment. Just slightly slow down your normal talking speed, it makes it easier to recognize more individual words and phrases. And maybe dial down on colloquialisms a bit at first.

2. Give the person time to process what you said. Sometimes it can take a few moments to realize what was just said to us when we don’t speak the language well (even if the person is speaking slower than their normal speed). So don’t just assume the person didn’t understand you if they don’t respond immediately, give them a moment first.

3. Ask if they understood what you said once in a while. Also offer to repeat or explain things. Some people won’t have a problem letting you know if they didn’t understand a word or a phrase, but others might feel bad asking you to repeat yourself multiple times (I know I do). So just ask every once in a while to make sure they’re still following you.

4. Use simple words to explain things. If the person is just starting out with their language learning then they don’t have a large vocabulary so using unnecessarily long sentences filled with fancy words will just confuse them even more. Simpler is always better.

Example: I once had to call a phone company’s help line to resolve an issue. I told the person I didn’t speak French very well, carefully explained the problem and he spent ten minutes talking at normal speed, explaining something to me and I didn’t understand a word. When I told him I didn’t understand he spent even longer repeating what he said and going in even more detail and I still had no idea what he was saying. I was too embarrassed and didn’t want to spend twenty more minutes on the phone with this guy so I just told him I got it and hung up. The next time I called, someone else answered and they explained it to me clearly in a fraction of the time and I understood them perfectly.

So keep your explanations short and simple.

5. If they can’t think of a word in your language and say it in another language you have in common, tell them the word in your language before moving on with the conversation. So many times people have just nodded in understanding and moved on with the conversation without telling me the French word when I’ve used an English word for something in the middle of a sentence. It can be a bit frustrating to have to interrupt the conversation to ask for clarification after every sentence (and for those of us on the shy and/or socially anxious side it’s also nerve-wracking). Conversations will flow much smoother if you just throw in the translation of the word in your language and then move on. Also

6. Don’t automatically switch to another common language after they use a word or a phrase from that language when they can’t think of them in your language. Ask first. It might be easier for both of you, but it doesn’t help them learn your language. If you want to practice that other language with them then make a deal about when you’re going to speak which language with each other. That way you’ll both get to practice your target language. So just ask them if they want to continue in that language, but don’t switch without asking. Again, some people will be more than comfortable in telling you which language they’d rather be speaking in, but others might not.

That’s all I can think of for now. Feel free to add your own advice

Why Fans Resonate With Lance So Much and Why We’re Mad He’s a False Protagonist (spoilers I guess)

So Lance has pretty much been my favorite character since about ten seconds after he came on screen, and I’ll try to get right to the point about why I feel that way and why a giant portion of the vld fandom feels that way as well.

Obviously, Lance has been openly shown to have insecurities about his self-worth. I can’t really think of another character from a cartoon show (except maybe, like, Sokka from A;TLA) to have this plotline to this degree, but it’s a very unique and sensitive characterization that should be handled a little more carefully than it has been.

As a recap, Lance doesn’t really contribute much in the way of “hyper-specialized skills” to Voltron (aside from occasional shots of underused Sniper!Lance.) But next to him, we see 1). An ace pilot with special alien heritage and advanced hand-to-hand fighting skills who has been picked as the successor to the team’s leader 2). An Earth hero/veteran with a special prosthetic that gives him valuable fighting abilities, who pilots the oh-so-special Black Lion 3). An engineering genius 4). A tech/ex machina genius 5). A space princess with magical powers, fighting skills, and shapeshifting abilities who can ‘sense’ and ‘channel’ whatever whenever the plot needs her to.

And then, oh yeah, we’ve got…Lance. Who cracks goofy jokes. 

He’s NORMAL! And it SUCKS to feel ‘normal’ when everyone around you seems so effortlessly special!

I’ve struggled with that feeling my whole life—that habit of constantly measuring myself against others and obsessing over what I can “contribute”. For the longest time, I thought I was only as valuable as what I could bring to the table. So I was shocked and awed to see a character with that same affliction. It’s odd. I’ve never had a character I resonated so strongly with. I see myself in Lance so much.

Our own insecurities are validated and reflected through Lance’s character. It’s a real emotional issue that many of us struggle with, so to see it on the screen given representation means something.

ANYWAY—Onto why Lance is a false protagonist, and why I’m pissed about it. In fiction, a false protagonist is “a literary technique, often used to make the plot more jarring or more memorable by fooling the audience’s preconceptions, that constructs a character who the audience assumes is the protagonist but is later revealed not to be.”

LANCE WAS SET UP DURING THE BEGINNING OF EPISODE ONE AS THOUGH HE WAS THE MAIN CHARACTER. 

Seriously, think about how books typically use their prologue+main story setup. We got our prologue (Shiro and the Holts being taken) and then it opens up to what the viewers assume is the start of the “Main Story” which typically follows the main character-to-be. This is a natural pattern to follow in storytelling because it helps the viewer understand and process what role each character plays overall. Lance is the first character we got a little bit of a read on with that whole “Blah blah remember you’re just a replacement for the dropout so don’t end up like him” Garrison test flight, so that’s another reason for the viewer to latch onto him. 

Watching Voltron for the first time knowing literally nothing about it going in, I knew there would be a team dynamic as episode one unfolded but thought that there would be special emphasis on Lance as the main character (think Aang from A;TLA. Yeah, there was a team of main characters, but Aang was THE main character if you get what I’m saying).

Seriously, go back and watch the first episode again if you didn’t notice it the first time. By a writing standpoint, Lance is written in the most “This will be the main character!” way possible. 

Which is why it’s so bizarre that he’s been pushed to the back-burner for so many seasons now. God, at this point, his back-burner isn’t even turned on anymore. He and Hunk are just the 3-day old pots of mac n’ cheese congealing by the sink while Shiro, Keith, and Pidge are lit up and ready to go at a moment’s notice, but at least Hunk’s Balmeran arc in season 1 spanned, like, 2 or 3 whole episodes when Lance is lucky to get anything beyond two minutes.

I’ve accepted that he’s not THE main character (I WAS starting to think it was Keith, but then he f’ed off for season 4 and I was like, no, Voltron, when we said we wanted less Keith we just meant we needed a better balance of characters not the entire removal of one) (and anyway how bad is it that even when Keith’s character is finally drawn back a little bit, WE STILL. GET. NO. LANCE (or Hunk). ARC.) 

Still, the dynamic from a writer’s standpoint is a little clunky. In my experience, stories are best told when they revolve around a singular main character, or two, like Gravity Falls for example. But things fall apart and get messy, especially in a television format, if you try to sell 5 main characters (six if you count Allura) as equally important (story-wise) right from the start. It just doesn’t work. It’s only natural to latch onto one or two characters and that’s why we keep getting these “Just wait, Lance will get his (3 second, never mentioned again or brought forward into a new season) moment!” promises. Good storytelling just doesn’t evolve well when you try to juggle five characters as all equally THE main character. And it ESPECIALLY feels super-clunky since Lance was introduced in episode one of the whole show as the potential main character and then used mostly for comic-relief ever since.

And when I say I want a Lance arc, I don’t mean “I want a Lance arc where Lance helps Keith learn to lead” or whatever—NO, GODDAMMIT. I WANT. AN ARC. FOCUSED SPECIFICALLY ON LANCE. NOT ON LANCE GROWING AS A SUPPORT FOR OTHER CHARACTERS’ GROWTH.

I was actually hoping that whole “Lance Dies in season 4!” worry going around would be true because 1). Lance obviously wouldn’t die for-real, so I wasn’t even worried about that 2). It would mean we would actually be getting what could have been a very emotional and quality Lance-focused story arc longer than three minutes.

I’m actually starting to think Lance isn’t going to get a story arc that spans across a few episodes that also remains the driving theme of those episodes. I think it will be another tossed-out line regarding his insecurity and that will be it.

I wanted Lance to be the Black Paladin so freaking bad, you guys! It would have been such a twist, such a moment for him to show off the leadership skills he’s been quietly accumulating. AND HOW ANGRY WAS I IN SEASON 4 WHEN LANCE LOGICALLY SAID “HM, MAYBE WE SHOULDN’T STAND UNDER THESE GENERATOR THINGS THAT LOOK LIKE THEY COULD FORM A FORCE FIELD AT ANY TIME” AND SHIRO BASICALLY SAID “WAIT HOLD ON, WE HAVE TO INVESTIGATE WHAT IT IS BY STANDING EXACTLY WHERE WE ARE.” WTF. LANCE, WHY ARE YOU SO IGNORED.

Anyway, it’s late and I’m cranky and kind of forgot where I was going with this but I’m signing off, passively hoping that maybe Lance will one day get his huge “I’m Keith and I get whole seasons dedicated to me” arc. 

But it probably won’t happen.

Ugh.

I’m going back to bed.

— off limits | 02 (m)

pairing— kim seokjin x reader
genre/warnings— smut, dirty talk, dom! Jin 
words— 7,520

:: summary— you’ve been lusting after your brother’s best friend for a while now, ever since you met him at a house party, flirting it up a storm as you failed to realise who the other was. That was months ago now and things are still awkward, but you can’t ignore the sexual tension that’s simmers between the two of you…and it keeps getting worse…

» 01 :: 02 :: 03 :: 04 :: 05 :: 06 ::

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