i paid a bribe

Show Me That You Love Me

(ao3, buzzfeed article that inspired this nonsense)

(Monday, Feb 6)

Clarke: FYI, I’m telling my coworkers that we’re dating so this creep will stop hitting on me
AT WORK

Bellamy: You can’t just leave it at that.
How creepy are we talking?  
You know if I don’t get specifics my mind jumps straight to the worst-case scenario.

Clarke: It’s not that big a deal? Mostly just annoying
But he won’t take no for an answer so I told him I had a boyfriend

Bellamy: Not a girlfriend?

Clarke: They know I’m bi already because I ranted about gross stereotypes at the Christmas party
It’s why they instituted a two-drink limit
And if he doesn’t respect my hard “no” I doubt he’ll respect my girlfriend’s so
Boyfriend

Bellamy: You sure you don’t want to date him? He sounds like a charmer.

Clarke: I was sure the first fifteen times he asked and my decision hasn’t wavered.
I wouldn’t have even mentioned it to you except I know Anya comes to the bar sometimes and I didn’t want you to blow my cover

Bellamy: Consider your cover secure.

Clarke: Thanks. I owe you one.

Bellamy: What are fake boyfriends for?

* * *

(Wednesday, Feb 8)

Clarke: WTF???

Bellamy: I see you got my flowers.

Clarke: They’re hard to miss seeing as they take up MY WHOLE CUBICLE
It smells like a rainforest
My allergies are killing me
Seriously. Why.

Bellamy: Can’t I just show my fake girlfriend that I appreciate her?
Why must you always assume I have ulterior motives?

Clarke: Because I know how expensive flowers can be and you’re the biggest coupon-clipping Scrooge I know

Bellamy: I’m helping!
I’m just trying to back up your story, Princess.

Clarke: You’re just trying to embarrass me in front of my coworkers is what you’re doing

Bellamy: Remember that time you made me do karaoke with you?
Some might consider us even now.

Clarke: You know Valentine’s Day is next week right? If you do something like this on a random Wednesday, you’re going to have to do something for that too or else Cage will think we’ve broken up

Bellamy: So I’m going to have to top myself is what you’re saying.

Clarke: I don’t think that’s what I said at all

Bellamy: If you insist, Princess.

Clarke: I don’t insist. I STRONGLY DO NOT INSIST.

Bellamy: Unrelated question: what song would you most like to have serenaded to you?

Clarke: If that’s how it’s gonna be then start preparing yourself
Cause it’s on, Blake

Bellamy: Dammit, I did not think this through.

Keep reading

Tomorrow

Summary: Draco has one person in mind for the yule ball.  One person who makes his insides flip upside down, his palms sweaty and his knees weak.  The one person he can’t talk to.  Guess what?  Y/N does too.

Word Count: just over 2400


Draco’s Journal – December 7, 1994

There’s going to be a stupid ball on Christmas Day.  Father will probably make me go with some daft bimbo.  I’ll have to get dressed up.  I’ll have to dance.  I’ll have to look at all the ridiculous couples act all lovey dovey on the dance floor.

It’ll be awful.

Draco’s Journal – December 9, 1994

Father said I could pick someone to go with.  He gave me a few suggestions but Mother made sure I knew that I could ask anyone.

Maybe I’ll ask her.

No.  That’s ridiculous.

I barely know her. She would never go to a ball with me.

I’ll have to look at the suggestions.  I’ll take whoever is the prettiest.  Yeah.  That’s the plan.

I need to forget about her.

Draco’s Journal – December 12, 1994

I did not forget about her.

I saw her in the Great Hall and nearly asked her right then and there.  She just looked so perfect talking and laughing with her friends.

No.  I need to get it together.

I’m asking Pansy Parkinson.

Tomorrow.

Keep reading

"Just” can be a harmful word

Please be careful when using the word “just” when talking to (or about) folk with ADD… or any other mental disorder or illness.

Many people are hurt and bitter* because of how others speak to them about their ADHD-related trouble. One of the worst offenders is the word “just.”

Examples:

“If you would just pay attention…”

“Why don’t you just set a good routine?” **

“My kid struggles with motivation/organization/etc. sometimes, too, but then he/she just [insert healthy, ‘simple’ solution here] and gets it done.”

“If you just eat the right food, you won’t need meds, and you’ll be all better! I read it in this book.” ***

“Just calm down.”

“Just sit still.”

“Just focus.”

“Just try harder.”

“Just” implies that overcoming our VERY REAL, clinically diagnosed disorder is “just” a matter of a tiny bit of will power. But it doesn’t work like that.

You don’t tell someone with paralyzed legs that if they “just try harder,” they can walk. Instead, you support them as they gain new skills and different methods of mobility to work around their disability.

Need a less extreme example? Try this: put your fist on a flat surface. Stick out your ring finger (and only your ring finger) so that its end rests on the surface. Now try to lift it without lifting any other part of your hand. It’s impossible, right? All your other fingers are mobile if placed in the same position, but not your ring finger.

But maybe it’s just a matter of will power. Try harder. Focus. Lift that finger!

Still impossible? Getting frustrated yet?

THAT is what it can feel like for an someone with ADHD trying to focus, calm down, organize their thoughts, etc. (Each person with ADHD or ADD has a slightly different package of symptoms, so I’m listing some that don’t apply to me.)

We have tools. We can function, and even THRIVE as we learn to use them. But it’s never a matter of “just.” We often know, in theory, what we should do, but can apply that knowledge about as easily as you can move your ring finger in the exercise above.

Many of us struggle enough with self-doubt without you minimizing our struggles.

While we’re on the topic, it’s about as effective to tell someone with depression to “just cheer up.” Or someone with PTSD to “just get over it already.” Don’t, okay? Just don’t.

Maybe you didn’t know better before. I don’t blame you for not knowing. No hard feelings, I promise. But now you know. So… please, learn how your speech can better reflect compassion.

- - -

* To be clear, I’m not speaking from an emotional place right now. I have not been terribly hurt by the word “just.” But some have. I believe this is an important message to get out.

**Routines are great, and essential for my sanity. But developing the skills to develop routines has taken me many years, and I still have a ways to go.

***I know of some excellent books and doctors with great points about diet and exercise. Good diet and exercise are important for managing ADD, but I’m wary of anything that claims to “cure” it, and “right diet” is definitely not a matter of “just.” So if you’d like to move in with me to help me organize and prepare my meals, then great! Otherwise, please stop. I’ve heard it before. I promise, I incorporate spinach into my diet.

****Even with helpful medicine on board, I have to wrestle my brain into submission if I ever want to get anything done. I bribe and trick my mind into cooperation. I paid attention in class, yes—by taking obsessive notes, including many things I didn’t need to write down. I struggle with motivation/organization/procrastination the MAJORITY of the time, not “sometimes.” It applies almost as much to fun things as to my responsibilities. This is so normal for me, I forget that some people can actually work efficiently without help.

I’m not complaining. I’m pretty happy with my life, and I have great coping skills. So no pity, please. But explanation is necessary—if folks with AD(H)D don’t help people understand us, then who will?

Web Sites Shine Light on Petty Bribery Worldwide

By Stephanie Strom, NY Times, March 6, 2012
The cost of claiming a legitimate income tax refund in Hyderabad, India? 10,000 rupees.

The going rate to get a child who has already passed the entrance requirements into high school in Nairobi, Kenya? 20,000 shillings.

The expense of obtaining a driver’s license after having passed the test in Karachi, Pakistan? 3,000 rupees.

Such is the price of what Swati Ramanathan calls “retail corruption,” the sort of nickel-and-dime bribery, as opposed to large-scale graft, that infects everyday life in so many parts of the world.

Ms. Ramanathan and her husband, Ramesh, along with Sridar Iyengar, set out to change all that in August 2010 when they started ipaidabribe.com, a site that collects anonymous reports of bribes paid, bribes requested but not paid and requests that were expected but not forthcoming.

About 80 percent of the more than 400,000 reports to the site tell stories like the ones above of officials and bureaucrats seeking illicit payments to provide routine services or process paperwork and forms.

“I was asked to pay a bribe to get a birth certificate for my daughter,” someone in Bangalore, India, wrote in to the Web site on Feb. 29, recording payment of a 120-rupee bribe in Bangalore. “The guy in charge called it ‘fees’ ”–except there are no fees charged for birth certificates, Ms. Ramanathan said.

Now, similar sites are spreading like kudzu around the globe, vexing petty bureaucrats the world over. Ms. Ramanathan said nongovernmental organizations and government agencies from at least 17 countries had contacted Janaagraha, the nonprofit organization in Bangalore that operates I Paid a Bribe, to ask about obtaining the source code and setting up a site of their own.

Last year, the Kingdom of Bhutan’s Anti-Corruption Commission created an online form to allow the anonymous reporting of corruption, and a similar site was created in Pakistan, ipaidbribe, which estimates that the country’s economy has lost some 8.5 trillion rupees, or about $94 billion, over the last four years to corruption, tax evasion and weak governance.

“We’re working to create a coalition of I Paid a Bribe groups that would perhaps meet annually and share experiences,” Ms. Ramanathan said.

Ben Elers, program director for Transparency International, a nongovernmental organization, said social media had given the average person powerful new tools to fight endemic corruption. “In the past, we tended to view corruption as this huge, monolithic problem that ordinary people couldn’t do anything about,” Mr. Elers said. “Now, people have new tools to identify it and demand change.”

Since no names are given on the sites, in part to avoid potential issues of libel and defamation, it is impossible to verify the reports, but Mr. Elers and others experienced in exposing corruption say many of them ring true.

They are threatening enough that when a rash of similar sites popped up in China last summer, the government stamped them out within a couple of weeks, contending they had failed to register with the authorities.

They are, however, only a reporting mechanism. “In their own right, they don’t change anything,” Mr. Elers said. “The critical thing is that mechanisms are developed to turn this online activity into offline change in the real world.”