i say you let me know your real identity for that

What we really need is an adaptation of the original 1740 The Beauty and the Beast

So were you aware that the The Beauty and the Beast story we all know is a heavily abridged and rewritten version of a much longer novella by Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve?  And that a lot of the plot holes existing in the current versions exist because the 1756 rewrite cut out the second half of the novella, which consisted entirely of the elaborate backstory that explains all the weird shit that happened before?  And that the elaborate backstory is presented in a way that’s kind of boring because the novel had only just been invented in 1740 and no one knew how they worked yet, but contains a bazillion awesome ideas that beg for a modern retelling?  And that you are probably not aware that the modern world needs this story like air but the modern world absolutely needs this story like air?  Allow me to explain:

The totally awesome elaborate backstory that explains Beauty and the Beast

  • Once upon a time there was a king, a queen, and their only son
  • But while the prince was still in his infancy, in a neat reversal of how these fairy tales usually go, the king tragically died, leaving his wife to act as Regent until their son reaches maturity
  • Unfortunately, the rulers of all the lands surrounding them go, “Hmm, the kingdom is ruled by a woman now, it must be weak, time for an invasion!”
  • And the Queen goes, “Well, if I let some general fight all these battles for me, he’ll totally amass enough fame and power to make a bid for the throne; if I want to protect my son’s crown, I have no choice but to take up arms and lead the troops myself!
  • (Btw, I want to stress that this woman is not Eowyn or Boudica and nothing in the way her story is presented suggests that she had any interest martial exploits before or in any way came to enjoy them during these battles.  This is a perfectly ordinary court lady who would much rather be embroidering altar covers for the royal chapel and playing with her child until necessity made her go, “Oh no, this sucks, I guess I have to become a Warrior Queen now” and she just happened to kick ass at it anyway.)
  • And the Queen totally kicked ass, but the whole “twice as good for half the credit” thing meant that no matter how many battles she won, potential enemies refused to take her and her army seriously until she had defeated them so no sooner would she fend off one invasion than another one would pop up on a different border.
  • So she spent the majority of her young son’s life away from the castle leading armies, but it was OK because she left him in the care of her two best friends, who just happen to be fairies!  This was an awesome idea because a) fairies have magic, and therefore are like the best people to protect the prince from any threats and b) fairies consider themselves to be so above humanity that the lowest fairy outranks the highest mortal, so they’d have no interest in taking a human throne.  Good thing they were both good fairies instead of one good and one evil one!
  • (Spoiler:  they were not both good fairies.)
  • So the two fairies basically take turns raising the prince until he’s old enough to rule.  And on the eve of his twenty-first birthday, the evil older one comes into the prince’s bedroom.
  • “So listen, kid.  You’re about to become king, your mother’s on her way home from the war to see you crowned, and I have a third piece of good news for you!  You see, I’ve actually been spending so much time here lately because Fairyland’s become a bit too hot to hold me for reasons totally not related to me being secretly evil.  And if I have to hang in the human world, I might as well reside in the upper echelons of it, so even though as a powerful fairy I completely eclipse your puny human status in a staggeringly unimaginable way, since you’re about to be king and since my premonition that I should stick this whole guardianship thing out because you would be hot one day has totally proved accurate (go me), I will graciously lower myself to allowing you to marry me.  Please feel free to grovel at my feet in gratitude.  (Btw, we can totally start the wedding night now, we’ll tell your mother about it when she arrives tomorrow.)”

Keep reading

i adore adore adore the fact that the four main characters of skam are so significant for teen culture of this day? as a teacher in secondary school, these are genuinely teenagers’ struggles that i’ve seen in everyday life.  

with eva, we saw the loneliness and loss of identity of teenagers (specifically girls!) within a peer culture that requires a lot of social interaction: you need to “know” where your place is and that is your identification; through dating, but also through friendships. but, as eva said, maybe it’s okay that she doesn’t know right now, and that she has to find it.. on her own. one of her biggest strengths in the end is how honest she has become; with herself and with others. 

with noora, we see a character who explicitely identifies herself as feminist and finds a lot of value in being morally upright. but what happens when situations aren’t as black and white as we think they are? moreover, what happens to a girl who has been sexually harassed, and violated, possibly even raped? noora shows us that at the very least, it is important to communicate with people about your experiences to be able to get through those horrible experiences, even if it is only a little bit. 

with isak, we delve into the psyche of a lgbt+ teenager who has seen representations of lgbt+ culture in the media and has enormous difficulties with identifying himself as such. but his story doesn’t end there even though other shows might have stopped there; his misconceptions about religion (god doesn’t exist!!) and mental illness (i don’t want them around/ they are crazy) are real thoughts that go through people’s heads (especially in western culture). these are all perceptions that are formed by society, but it is important that isak was never demonised for these ideas; through communication with different kinds of people he got educated on things he thought he knew about and that changed him into the mature person he is now. 

and now, with sana, a muslimah with one leg in the Western culture and one in her religion which is seen as “unwestern” by many who critique it, has the time come to delve into a deeper understanding of those who experience (daily?) hatred in their lives through media and society. once again, communication seems at a forefront: “don’t let me be misunderstood” – listen to my experiences, to my life, to my explanations. she has been so infallible before, that it will be interesting to see what is going to be her challenge in her season; a character who is so focused on being right in everything she does – i think her unintentionally making a mistake having an effect on her and the people around her would be an excellent story. 

i guarantee that this series will have a long lasting effect on how teenagers, and people, are going to view each other in the long run. media teaches us to be afraid of each other; skam is that small light that shows there is more than fear. 

there’s also love. in compassion, in understanding, in educating. 

and i can’t wait to look back on it all and say: you know, that norwegian series for teenagers in 2015? i felt validated, i felt heard, i felt loved by that series. i’m gonna show my love in return to other people. because we have learned something from it. 

alt er love. 

Lyrics written by Namjoon

Because he didn’t only write “I’mma beat that p*ssy like you never ever felt before”

-“Having tight schedules Even tough i’m tired,I smile
Cause in a family called bangtan i’m a not an only child”
-Unpack Your Bags

-”I can be assigned to many places,
But why can’t I find the real me anywhere?”-
So 4 More

-”I don’t know whether I’ve lost the way
or whether from the beginning I was lost
even when I’m with someone, one corner of my heart is lonely”
-Adrift

-”This sea is too deep
Still, I’m lucky
Because even if I cry, no one would know”
-Whalien 52

-“Never be late to do what you wanna do right now
Because at one point of someday,
Everything you did
Would be exactly what you will be” -
O,RUL8,2?

-”Thank you for letting me be me
For helping me fly
For giving me wings
For straightening me out
For waking me from being suffocated
For waking me from a dream which was all I was living in" -SAVE ME

-”I just wanted to succeed
the words I tediously heard from others were only that
I thought I could catch the mirage known as happiness
but the me in front of my desk wasn’t happy even for a moment
Without my mom knowing, I put a sheet of white paper between the pages of my workbook
My identity that I wrote down matched to the drum and bass”
-Voice

-“The grown-ups confess
That we have it so easy
They say that we are happier than our portion
Then how do you explain my unhappiness?
There’s no conversation topics beside studying
Outside, there are so many kids like me,
Living the life of a puppet
Who will take responsibility?”
-N.O

-”Life isn’t about living along but living through
As you live through, you’ll disappear some day
If you keep spacing out, you’ll be swept away,
if you ain’t no got the guts, trust”
-Tomorrow 

-”I empty my drink but it gets filled with loneliness […]
All I did was color you in my white, blank paper
But then I realized, it already became a finished picture”
-Hold me tight

-”Hey you, who’s looking over the Han River
If we bump into each other while passing, would it be fate?
Or maybe we bumped into each other in our past life
Maybe we bumped into each other countless times”
-Reflection

-”My mother said the sea is blue
She said to let out your voice as far as you can
But what to do, it’s so dark and there are only different whales
speaking entirely different words”
-Whalien 52

-”The media and adults say we don’t have willpower
condemning us like stocks
Why are they killing us before we can even try
Why are you hanging your head and accepting it already?” -Dope

-”Life is more beautiful knowing that we’ve taken a loan on death
Even light is treasured more when there’s darkness
The sunshine appears after we’ve passed through the storm”
-Life

-”Let’s be happy, let’s be happy
Even if we live with these heavy words in our mouths every day
To be honest, I still don’t know
Why am I often lonely”
-Adrift

-“I’m living to understand the world, 
But why hasn’t this world tried to understand me”
-Always

-”Back then I thought this was a big place
But my ambition grew too big
That big house became too small now”
-Move

-“In the darkness,
People look happier than the day
Everyone else knows where they’re supposed to be
But only I walk without purpose”
-Reflection

-”Outside was a whole battlefield so I bring out the chopper
Every night inside me I quietly fight with myself
My heart pounds, my colleagues stab me in the back
While saying that I became a moron after joining a company”
-Awakening

-”It’s just one life
Who are you living for?
My heart stopped when I was nine or ten
Put your hand on your heart
and ask what you dream was
What is really was”
-O,RUL8,2?  

*This was Sarah for you daily Namnam appreciation

(cred to Lynn and papercrowns!)

advocacy: have some perspective, don’t throw your own people under the bus

I’ve seen a lot of discourse lately about how Blizzard is handling Emily/Tracer wrong - how there’s no sign of it in the game, etc. etc. And there isn’t, yet. There isn’t any sign Tracer is gay in the actual game, so it’s fair comment. I’ve also seem what is pretty unfair conclusions about why this is thrown around, I’ve seen really nasty snark disguised as witty criticism., and it… leaves a bad taste in my mouth, really. 

A very close friend of mine works in an AAA studio. She’s worked in gaming for 10 years. She literally works herself to the bone trying to push social justice in games - and it’s like pushing a fucking boulder uphill forever, let me tell you. I’ve watched what this tireless advocacy is doing to her. Nevertheless, she keeps going. 

It’s because of people like my friend that Overwatch exists - people who have persistently, tirelessly, at threat to their relationships, livelihoods and careers advocated for diversity and representation in games. 

I can only imagine how fucking hard it’s been to change the culture in Blizzard into a company where they publish an AAA game that is as diverse as Overwatch. It’s because of people like my friend, allies, and other supportive people that we have Overwatch at all.

Let’s review some of the great things about the game: a variety of diverse races, ethnicities and identities - consultation was pretty fucking good for most of those. And they listen to our comments about what’s missing, too. We didn’t like that Pharah’s VA wasn’t Egyptian, so what did they do? They got an Egyptian VA living in Egypt to voice Ana. We didn’t like the lack of black characters, and they’ve promised more, and the latest new character is an Omnic created by child genius Efi who is black - and they got a black woman for Orisa’s VA.

Blizzard has handled female characters very well. We complained after they’d released their initial characters that the body type of the female characters was generic and not diverse. So what did they do? They gave us Zarya and Mei. We complained that Tracer was being objectified in one of her poses. What did they do? They changed the fucking pose. They have given us a Muslim single mum who’s 60 old, still a soldier, has sexual agency and is more than just her role as ‘Mum’. The spread of female characters isn’t 16-25 as per most games that have female protagonists, but 19-60, with the majority of them being in their 30s, and that is fucking great

And all of this is aside from the fact that Tracer - the face of the fucking game - is canon, confirmed lesbian in those words by both the devs and in ¾ of a big major comic. She’s in a healthy adult relationship. Plus, there’s more to come. We know more characters are queer, too. 

There’s probably more stuff to add, but off the top of my head - how great is this fucking game?????

Now, it’s not to say that all of this has been done perfectly - there’s always room for improvement. They always could do things better. But the tone of some of the posts I’ve read is as if none of this exists. As if Blizzard has spat in our faces, somehow, by not having Tracer have mentioned Emily in the game yet. The anger, the entitlement, the mockery. 

You’re mocking probably a bunch of queer people, people of colour and women who have pushed and pushed and pushed the gaming industry for decades in order to get a game like Overwatch. You’re mocking people like my friend who has slogged her fucking guts out to get what we’ve got in the games her company produces. Can you imagine what it must be like for those people, responsible for these changes in Blizzard and in the industry, to read people bitching about the fact Tracer doesn’t say anything about Emily (yet) when they’ve pushed so fucking hard just to get what we’ve gotten? 

Do you realise how horribly ungrateful and rude that sounds? You may not be aiming your criticism at these people, but they’re among us. They read social media. They’re real people with real feelings. 

Can we please have some appreciation for just how far Overwatch has taken diversity in games? Because there’s a bunch of minority folks behind this push, mark my words. 

This post is not to discourage criticism, but please, please think of the tone of voice you give it in. Don’t be cruel or unfair. Don’t mock. Don’t be ungateful, please. 

“It’s as if Emily doesn’t even fucking exist, I wonder why that is lollllll fucking blizz” works so much better as “Hey Blizz, I love that Tracer has a girlfriend! Let’s have Tracer mention Emily in the game? :D” 

There are ways to deliver suggestions and feedback that don’t shit all over the people who’ve worked so hard to bring this game to you. Please take an extra 5 seconds to consider not sounding entitled and awful, and think about how else you could deliver this feedback so you’re not hurting the people who have worked their whole lives so you have it <3

A white guy’s thoughts on “Get Out” and racism

This weekend, I went to see a horror movie. It got stuck in my head, and now I can’t stop thinking about it—but not for any of the reasons you might think.

The movie was Jordan Peele’s new hit Get Out, which has gotten rave reviews from critics—an incredible 99% on Rotten Tomatoes—and has a lot of people talking about its themes.

First of all, I should tell you that I hate horror movies. As a general rule, I stay far, far away from them, but after everything I’d read, I felt like this was an important film for me to see. This trailer might give you some inkling as to why:

Creepy, huh? You might know writer/director Jordan Peele as part of the comedy duo Key & Peele, known for smartly tackling societal issues through sketch comedy. Get Out is a horror movie, but it’s also a film about race in America, and it’s impressively multilayered.

I left the theater feeling deeply disturbed but glad this movie was made. I can’t say any more without revealing spoilers, so if you haven’t seen the movie yet and you don’t want to have the plot spoiled for you, stop reading now and come back later.

Seriously, this is your last chance before I give away what happens.

Okay, you were warned. Here we go.

Our protagonist is Chris Washington, a young black man who has been dating Rose Armitage, a young white woman, for the last four months. She wants him to meet her family, but he’s hesitant. She acknowledges that her dad can be a little awkward on the subject of race, but assures Chris that he means well.

After unnerving encounters with a deer (echoes of The Invitation) and a racist cop, Chris and Rose arrive at the Armitages’ estate. On the surface, the Armitages are very friendly, but the conversation (brilliantly scripted by Peele) includes a lot of the little, everyday, get-under-your-skin moments of racism that people of color have to contend with: Rose’s dad going on about how he voted for Obama, for instance, and asking how long “this thang” has been going on. Chris laughs it off to be polite, though he clearly feels uncomfortable.

There’s a fantastic moment here, by the way, when Rose’s dad offhandedly mentions that they had to close off the basement because of “black mold.” In the midst of the racially charged atmosphere of the conversation, it’s nearly impossible not to take this as a racial remark, and Chris certainly notices, but what could he possibly say about it? Black mold is a real thing; his girlfriend would surely think he was crazy and oversensitive if he said it sounded racist. Chris never reacts to the remark, but that one tiny moment is a reminder to the audience of a real problem people of color often face, when racism can’t be called out without being accused of “playing the race card” or seeing things that aren’t there. (Incidentally, it turns out that the basement is actually used for molding of a different sort.)

There are other reasons for Chris to be unsettled: The only other black people on the estate are two servants, Georgina and Walter (Rose’s dad says he knows how bad it looks, but that it’s not what it seems), and something is clearly “off” about them. Later, more white people show up—and one more black character, and he, too, feels “off.”

By the end of the film, we learn the horrible secret: Rose’s family is kidnapping and luring black people to their estate, where they’re being hypnotized and psychologically trapped inside themselves—Rose’s mom calls it “the sunken place”—so that old or disabled white people’s consciousnesses can be transplanted into their bodies. The white people are then able to move about, controlling their new black bodies, with the black person’s consciousness along for the ride as a mere “passenger.” In a shocking twist, it turns out that even apparently-sweet Rose is in on the plot, and Chris must fight her and the rest of her family to escape.

This isn’t a “white people are evil” film, although it may sound that way at first, but it is a film about racism. I know many of my friends of color will connect with this movie in a way I can’t, so I won’t try to say what I think they’ll get out of it. I do want to say how I connected with it, though, because I think what Jordan Peele has done here is really important for white audiences. 

If you look beyond the surface horror-movie plot, this film actually gives white people a tiny peek at the reality of racism—not the epithet-shouting neo-Nazi kind of racism that white people normally imagine when we hear “racism,” but the “Oh it’s so nice to meet you; I voted for Obama” kind of racism, the subtle othering that expects people of color to smile and get along and adopt white culture as their own whenever they’re around white people.

So many of the moments in Get Out are clearly intended to work on multiple levels. When Chris confronts Georgina about something being wrong and she smiles and says, “No, no no no no no,” with tears streaming down her cheeks, the symbolism is blatant. How often do people of color have to ignore the subtle indignities they face and hide their true emotions in order to avoid coming across as, for example, “the angry black woman/man”? How many times do they find themselves in social situations—even with their closest white friends!—where people make little comments tying them to an “exotic,” supposedly monolithic culture, where they have to respond with a smile and a laugh instead of telling people how stupid and offensive they’re being? 

I can’t tell you the number of these stories I’ve heard from my friends, and I’m quite sure that the stories I’ve heard are only a tiny fraction of the stories that could be told. So there’s something in that moment that speaks volumes about the experiences of people of color in America.

The same is true for so many other moments. The black characters Chris meets at the Armitages’ have all symbolically given up their identities and conformed to white culture; when Chris meets one character, he turns out to be going under a new name, with new clothes and new mannerisms; when Chris offers him a fist bump, he tries to shake Chris’s fist. Again, within the story, there’s an explanation for all this, but every moment here is also about assimilation and culture differences. 

For me as a white audience member, all of these moments did something remarkable: They showed me my own culture—a culture I’m often blissfully unaware of because it’s all around me—as something alien. They reminded me that I, too, have a culture, and that expecting everyone else to assimilate to my culture is just as much an erasing of their identities as it would be to expect me to assimilate to someone else’s culture.

And that’s a big part of what Get Out is about—the erasing of identities, and the power of racism to destroy people. I think it’s really significant that racism is portrayed here very differently from how it’s normally portrayed in movies written by white people. In most Hollywood movies, you know a character is racist because they shout racial epithets or make blatant statements about a certain race’s inferiority. That allows white audiences to say, “I would never do/say that, so I’m not racist!” We really don’t want to think we are.

But notice something important about Get Out’s treatment of racism: This is a film about the literal enslavement of black people—racism doesn’t get more extreme than that—and yet Peele doesn’t go for the obvious by having the white characters admit that they think black people are inferior; instead, they subjugate and dehumanize people by claiming to admire things about them. They turn them into fashion accessories. 

When Chris asks why only black people are being targeted for this procedure, the response is telling: It’s not (supposedly) because the white characters think African Americans are bad, but rather, because they like certain things about them and they want “a change” for themselves. They want to become black—it’s trendy, we’re told!—but without having had any of the actual life experiences or history of African Americans. White people need to see this: to experience the ways in which Chris is othered by people who tell him all the things they like about him—isn’t he strong? Look at those muscles! Does he play golf like Tiger Woods? And he must be well-endowed and have such sexual prowess, right, Rose?

The white people in the audience need to be reminded that just because you’re saying positive things about someone doesn’t mean you’re not being racist, that turning someone into an exotic “other” may not be the same as shouting an epithet, but it’s still taking away someone’s identity and treating them as a commodity.

The film is filled with these kinds of moments. When we realize that Rose’s white grandmother has inhabited the body of Georgina, the fact that she keeps touching her own hair and admiring herself in the mirror takes on a whole new level of significance. (White people, please don’t ask to touch your black friends’ hair.) When Chris connects with a dying deer on the side of the road and later sees a deer head mounted on the wall at the Armitages’ estate, the symbolism is hard to miss. Black people are being turned into trophies in this house. And, oh yeah, they’re being literally auctioned off—as they were in real life in the not-too-distant past.

One day, I’d like to see the film again to pick up on all the ways things read differently the second time through. I noticed several things in retrospect that gain new significance once you know the ending, and I’m sure there’s a lot I didn’t notice. For example, Rose’s dad says he hired Walter and Georgina to care for his parents, and when his parents died, “I couldn’t bear to let them go.” The first time you see the film, it sounds like the “them” is Walter and Georgina. But in retrospect, it’s clear the “them” he couldn’t bear to let go was his parents, so he sacrificed Walter and Georgina for them. Which, again, is an example of how the supposed care of the white characters for the black characters (his care for Walter and Georgina, Rose’s care for Chris) is really all about caring for themselves and treating the black characters as completely interchangeable objects.

The message of the film isn’t simply that the black characters are “good” and the white characters are “bad.” There are presumably—hopefully—many good white people in the world of this film, and many others who wouldn’t do what the Armitages are doing but also probably wouldn’t believe Chris or make the effort to stop it. Peele’s mother and wife are both white, so he’s clearly not trying to paint all white people as villains. 

But I admit, as a white guy, I really, really wanted Rose to be good. I’ve been the white person in an interracial relationship introducing my black boyfriend to my family. I’ve been that. So I related to Rose, and I really wanted to believe that she was well-intentioned and just oblivious; even though she misses the mark on several occasions, there are times that she seems like she gets it and she really does listen to Chris. When a cop asks to see Chris’s ID early in the film even though he wasn’t driving, Rose stands up against the obvious racism, showing us all what it looks like for white people to do the right thing. “That was hot,” Chris says to her later, and I thought, yeah, that’s who I want to be.

So I have to admit, it was really upsetting to me to see Rose, the only good white character left in the film, turn out to be evil. But I realized that part of that is that I really wanted her to represent me, and that’s really the point. Just think how often horror films have only one black character who dies early on, and how many films of all genres have no significant black characters for audience members to look up to or identify with. I think it’s really important for white audiences to experience that.

As I’ve reflected on the film, it seems to me like there are three kinds of popular movies about people of color. There are those that feature POC characters that are essentially indistinguishable from the white characters—as if they just decided to cast Morgan Freeman instead of Tom Hanks without giving any thought to the character’s race. Then there are the movies that deal with racism, but in a way that allows white people to feel good about ourselves, because we’re not like the characters in the film. (This is especially true for movies about racism in the past; some of them are very important films, like Hidden Figures, which I loved, but we need to be aware that it’s still easy for white America to treat it as a feel-good film and think that we’re off the hook because we no longer have separate restrooms.) And finally, there are movies that focus more directly on the lives of people of color but tend to draw largely audiences of color; not many white people go see them, because we think they’re not “for us” (even though we assume films about white people are for everyone).

Get Out isn’t any of those. It’s drawing a broad audience but it’s not afraid to make white people uncomfortable. And if you can give me, a white guy, a chance to have even a momentary fraction of an experience of the real-life, modern-day, casual racism facing people of color in America, I think that’s a very good thing.

shiv

///


November 14th.
In the coffee shop,
the man in the
Make America Great Again hat
smiles at me, so I take this
as an invitation.


“Pardon me, but I have to ask—
do you think Trump’s
ideologies keep every person
in this country safe?“


He doesn’t hesitate.


“Ma’am, I can’t get wrapped up
in identity politics, all I can
worry about is how
I’m going to feed my girls.”


///


At my 40th birthday party,
an acquaintance asks
why we have “so much
Mexican art in the house.”

“It might be because I’m Mexican,” I say.

“No,” he laughs, “you’re not Mexican.”

“Yes. I am.”

“No,” he continues, reassuringly,
“and if you are, you’re only, maybe, 17%.“

The winter air stiffens between us.
An old, familiar pain.


///


There was a time when I
would have thanked him.


The early years,
when I wanted only to pass,
to rid myself of my last name—
the dead giveaway,
its muddy lineage


crawl out from the burying shame
that held me down every time
my father picked me up
from school in our shitty car,
his bushy mustache
& brown face
magnified by the sun.


///


A local white woman
posts a photo of her new tattoo:
a Mayan god etched eternal
on her flesh. When I point out
the disrespect, she assures me
she speaks Spanish fluently,
spent three years
in South America.


For the next six hours,
I argue with her friends.
They demand I quit being so
divisive. Judgemental. Close-minded.


“We have a racist running for President,
and you’re complaining about a tattoo?”
asks the white boy, who spray paints
murals all over this city
with impunity.


O, to be permitted the luxury
of only worrying about one thing at a time.


O, to be white in America,
to wake up knowing every god is your god.


///


When you never see yourself,
you search for yourself all the time.


You know the white girl
in the sombrero isn’t you.
The bro dude in Calavera makeup
isn’t either, not the ponchos
and glued on mustaches,
not the lowrider Chevy
in the Disney movie
or the hoochie-coochie
sex pot on the Emmy
award-winning television show.


Maybe you are only this:


the scorched bird pulled
from the chimney,
covered in soot.
Not the actual bird,
its velvet sack
of jigsaw’d bones,
but the feeling
of recognition.


The ash of knowing.


///


A white comedian tells this joke:
“I used to date Hispanics,
but now I prefer consensual.”


The audience laughs.
And you do, too.
Until the punchline hardens,
translates into a stone
in your throat.


You swallow it, like you always do.


You don’t change the channel,
but you also can’t remember
a single joke she tells after that.


A few months later, the comedian’s career
blows up. She’s so real. So edgy.
Such a hardcore feminist.
When someone writes an essay on
her old stand-up routines—
noting her blindspot when it comes to race,


her response is:


“It is a joke and it is funny.
I know that because people laugh at it.”


///


If two Mexicans are in a car, who is driving?
A police officer.


How do you starve a Mexican?
Put their food stamps in their work boots.


What’s the difference between a Mexican and an elevator?
One can raise a child.


What do you call a Mexican baptism?
Bean dip


How do you stop a Mexican from robbing your house?
Put a help wanted sign in the window.


What do you call a Mexican driving a BMW?
Grand theft auto


What do you call a Mexican without a lawnmower?
Unemployed


What do you call a building full of Mexicans?
Jail


How do you keep Mexicans from stealing?
Put everything of value on the top shelf.


What do you call a bunch of Mexicans running downhill?
A mudslide.


Why don’t Mexicans play Hide ’n Seek?
No one will look for them.


What does a Mexican get for Christmas?
Your TV.


What do you call the Arizona man shot to death
by his white neighbor, screaming, “Go back to Mexico!”
Juan Varela


///


November 29th.
For weeks, I’ve avoided
eye contact with strangers.
My face is a closed curtain.
My mouth, the most
decorated knife.
I pay for groceries,
grab the receipt &
let my half-hearted
thank yous trail like smoke.
I no longer want to see
who refuses to see me.


Anyone is everyone.


///


December 1st.
I keep waking up.
There isn’t anyone
white enough to stop me.


Pantomime the living until
the body remembers:
wicked bitch. Bloodwhirl.
Patron Saint of the Grab Back.


Still. Still. Still. Still. Still. Still here.


///


I etch my own face upon my wicked flesh.
I am my own devastating god.

 


Rachel McKibbens, Dec. 2016

Top 9 Most Fight-Able Characters in Mystic Messenger

(ranked by the likelihood of winning from least to most likely)

9. “Mary” Vanderwood, Secret Agent Murdermonster

Result: A swift and painful death

Are you shitting me? You’ll be goddamn eviscerated on the spot. Not to mention nobody will ever find your body. This is completely fucking unadvisable. DO NOT DO THIS unless you have a DEATH WISH and want to disappear from the world completely. Vanderwood is not to be messed with. They’ve killed many a worthy foe, and you will not be one of them. There’s not much else to say here. I don’t care who you are, you should not challenge Vanderwood. Say your prayers, fucker

8. Unknown/Saeran Choi, Total Edgelord

Result: Utter defeat, probably followed by torture + imprisonment

I don’t think you need me to tell you that this kid is fucking off his rocker. Let’s be real, he’s probably killed a few people, and he enjoyed every minute of it. You can bet your ass he’ll likely torture you after defeating you, too. And you know, some of you sick fucks will probably enjoy the whole damn ordeal. You’re probably the only ones who’d WANT to fight him just to have him fucking step on you. Well congratu-fucking-lations, you got what you wanted. He still beats your ass. The only reason Vanderwood beats him in this ranking is because it’s possible he’d keep you alive for fun, and some of you would enjoy that, so at least it’s a fuckin victory for somebody. Fuck.

7. Jaehee Kang, Smarter than the CEO

Result: Total annihilation + jail time

Do you see this face? This is the face of someone who has been repressing violent urges for fucking years for the sake of keeping her job. If she could snap Jumin’s neck, she would in a heartbeat. You do not want to give her a justifiable reason to unleash that utter fucking rage on your sorry ass. Did you forget she has a black belt in judo? She could beat my ass. She could beat your ass. She could beat anyone’s ass. I don’t care WHO you think you are. And after the fight? She’ll report you to the proper authorities, pick up a cup of coffee, and finish her daily tasks like nothing fucking happened. What a wild bitch. I fucking love her to death, tbh. And you know what? How dare you challenge her. She deals with enough shit in her life. I hope she beats your ass with a righteous fucking fury. Have fun in jail, dipshit.

6. God 707, Meme Lord Supreme

Result: Depends on your approach, but probably a failure

Honestly Seven’s about as fucking predictable as a lunch box full of wasps. What am I even supposed to say here? He’d probably imitate that shitty ass vine meme the first time you punch him and say “I can’t believe you’ve done this”, complete with a British accent, but when you keep hitting, it’ll confuse him. The element of surprise is probably your best bet, but you also have no fucking clue what he’ll do. He might beat the shit out of you. He might scamper away on his scrawny ass legs and proceed to hack into everything you once loved or held dear. He might lay down on the ground and let you kick the shit out of him. In the end, it depends on his mood. Is that reliable at all? Absolutely fucking not. So go for it, but I literally have no idea how it’s gonna turn out for you.

5. Zen/Hyun Ryu, A God Among Men

Result: You have a good chance of winning, but at what cost?

OK BEFORE YOU LOSE YOUR MIND LISTEN THE FUCK UP. Why is Zen higher up on the list, Nani??? you ask me, pouting, clutching your Zen body pillow(s) in agony. Zen had a bad past!! He’s not easy to fight, he was such a bad boy!! v//w//v He’s so tough and strong and he’s our knight in shining armor! Hey!! Good for you! But GUESS FUCKING WHAT!! If you’re female, he’ll probably forfeit to you immediately, unlike the barbarians before him on this list, so technically he’s easier to fight! He’d probably LET you beat the shit out of him if it made you feel better. It’s not even a fucking question of who would win if a woman challenged him, so we’re gonna move on.
Now, if you’re a GUY, he’d be more willing to square up, and my advice is go for his face. Pretty boy doesn’t like messing up his pretty mug, and if you play dirty, he’ll get scared real quick. His ponytail is a disadvantage for him, so yank it real hard. You have a better chance of beating him with perseverance, but if you let him get the upper hand, you’re deceased because he’s probably a heavy hitter. Also, you will incur the wrath of all his fangirls, and probably the angels above, and you will spend the rest of your life MISERABLE AND CURSED, so proceed with caution. If you can get away with it without anyone knowing your identity, you’re golden. Good luck, but also, why? do you even want to??

4. Jumin Han, Mistah Trussfund Kid (The CEO)

Result: Instant win, but your life will be RUINED

Honestly, I think certain RFA members would actually be very glad if someone handed Jumin’s ass to him, but good fucking luck accomplishing that without having your entire life destroyed. On a purely physical level, Jumin is no competition. He may be the tallest motherfucker around, but he’s never fought anyone before in his LIFE. You’d probably only have an issue here if you were short as shit, and even then, go for the knees, amirite? He’ll fall like a fucking oak tree, and then you can rip him a new one while he’s down. Easy peasy, right? WRONG. He’s got a horde of like 50 bodyguards that you have to sneak past or defeat first or something. And if you somehow make it to Jumin first, they’ll swarm your ass after you first start swinging and have you incapacitated in a few seconds. Are those first few swings worth it? Maybe. But he’s gonna sue your ass for everything you own. The whole world will know your name. If you don’t get jail time, you’ll wish you had. It will be an easier life than trying to live in the public. Zen and Jaehee might love you forever, though, so maybe they can pull a few favors for ya. You better pray they do. Good fuckin luck out there, champ.

3. Yoosung Kim, Small Child

Result: Victory, but with a catch

Look into this child’s eyes. Look me in the eyes. Tell me that Yoosung isn’t a fucking pansy. You can’t, can you? It’s because Yoosung is a fucking pansy. This kid would be down for the count after exactly one (1) punch. He might enjoy it a little too, which’ll be awkward as shit for both of you. HOWEVER. If you trigger his Yandere side, which is bullshit but whatever, he might put up more of a fight. How do you do this, you may ask? Insult Rika. or MC. (Probably Rika tho). Something inside him will snap, and then he’ll be trickier to handle. He’ll probably play dirty when he’s like this, so expect to get shanked or bitten or something. It doesn’t change the fact that his scrawny ass can’t fight for shit, so you’ll still probably win, but not without a few injuries yourself. Hurting Yoosung is probably the moral equivalent to kicking a puppy. If you can be ok with yourself after that, then I mean, go for it.

2. Rika, the Antichrist

Result: Certain victory, but extremely dangerous

Look, maybe I should’ve put her lower on the list considering she’s got an entire cult following her every order. But, honest to God, you would be morally obligated to fight her. Please beat the shit out of her. Physically, her scrawny ass could do nothing to stop you. She’s ruined the lives of her friends, as well as countless other people, because of her deranged and, quite frankly, selfish desires. Basically, she’s a little bitch. I don’t know how you’ll do it, but god damn, you’ll be everyone’s hero. The downside to this is that she might sick Saeran on you, which is gonna be a pain in your ass, and Yoosung might hate you forever, but I think you can live with that, right? Do us all a favor. Fight Rika.

1. Jihyun Kim/V, aka Flower Angel Sunshine Man

Result: Total Victory, but you’re basically Satan

BEFORE YOU SEND ME ANON HATE, REMEMBER: this is a list based on how likely you are to win. And V? V would let anyone beat him. He probably thinks he deserves it. He might defend himself a little, but he couldn’t bring himself to hurt you. Your victory would be almost immediate. There is no catch to V. You’d just win. But you’re a fucking monster for it. And you know what? I’ll beat the shit out of you if you hurt this man. So don’t even think about it, asshole.

The Ultimate Guide to POT Dates

POT
noun, (pronounced: pē-oh-tē)
A potential Sugar Daddy. This is a man you have not met yet, but are considering starting an arrangement with, or have been on a date with, but haven’t established anything solid yet. In short, a man who you think could potentially be your sugar daddy, but aren’t quite sure yet.

So you’ve checked out his profile, messaged with him a little, decided he could be the one for you; the main question asked now is - what do I do next?

The answer is simple, but for the Sugar Babies who are new, it’s often terrifying. Using the experience I’ve gotten after being a Sugar Baby for a while, I’ve put together a complete guide on how to handle that very first date, so that maybe it goes a little smoother than mine did! xo

Before You Meet

  • Get a feel for him over messaging/text - There’s nothing worse than being stuck for an hour or two with a man who has an attitude, is full of himself, or is just salty, that’s why it’s important to work out what type of person he is. 
                    ‣ Identifying Factors:
                            - He has a sleezy username on SA: if his username is ‘CunnilingusMaster69′ or something along those lines, it’s blatantly obvious what’s he looking for.
                            - His responses don’t mirror yours: think about conversational mirroring and use it to help you gauge the success of your conversation. It’s a form of social psychology that is pretty important to how anyone is perceived. If you’re typing out paragraph after paragraph and he is replying with short responses (or vice versa), it’s obvious one party is more interested than the other.
                            - He asks for sexual photos: if he’s asking for sexual photos without even met with you for the first time, then he’s got one thing on his mind and it’s probably pay per play. However, most Sugar Daddy’s will ask for extra photo’s, to make sure you’re not catfishing them, so be ready for that request and have extra photo’s you can send that aren’t on your profile (I usually send one cute selfie and a second full body pic in a nice outfit.) Please note: Snapchat ‘puppy’ filter selfies are not appropriate to send as an additional selfie, maybe once you’ve met him a few times, but not prior to a first meet. You’re already younger than him, there is no need to make yourself seem even younger.
                            - He asks you questions of a sexual nature (ie: your favorite position, sexual history, what you’re into, kinkiest desires, etc): there is absolutely no need for tacky sexual questions, especially if you two haven’t met before. It is important to understand that yes, sugaring is based on sex, sugaring is sex work, but it’s not only sex. Sugaring is about companionship, chemistry, new experiences, and then sex. If he requires a detailed list of what you will or will not do sexually just to meet you for the first time, then he is obviously not looking for a sugar arrangement, he’s just looking for pay per play (which is fine if pay per play is what you’re looking for, each sugar baby is entitled to her own wants and desires out of an arrangement).
                   ‣ Tip:
                           - Whenever an SD asks me “what i am willing to do”, i always reply with this. It’s elegant, polite, and successfully moves the conversation to other topics.
  • Get as many details about him as you can - Meeting someone off the internet is always a little unnerving, especially when it’s a man twice or three times your age. To feel safer, ask for as many details from him as you can, then reverse search the information you have (ie: his phone number, email, name, etc.) to find out his address, income, family members, and other information of the sort. The same goes with photo’s, reverse search them to find out company info, criminal history, and if he’s on any other sites (this helps cross-check age, location, and other facts he has listed on his profile).
  • Choose an identity and stick to it - Think about the type of person you want to convey (ie: the struggling but motivated university student, the driven twenty-something, the educated single mother, the urban socialite, etc) and build yourself up around that image. If you don’t feel comfortable using your real name with POT’s, use a fake name. Invent fake facts and stories or recall certain facts and stories from your life that correspond to the type of person you want to be. Remember, the more you have, the better. Most POT’s will ask you to some extent, some more than others, about you (ie: your job, your likes/dislikes, your upbringing, your dreams/aspirations, your background, your parents/their occupation, etc) and you will need to be prepared to answer. On the other hand, be prepped with questions to ask him, this date is about getting to know each other, it’s a waste of time if you leave knowing nothing about him.
                  ‣ Tip:
                           - If you’re struggling with coming up with questions, check out this and this, there’s a large variety of questions that you could use.
  • Make sure he understands that absolutely nothing sexual will happen on this date - There should be no sex on a first date, absolutely nothing sexual. If your POT believes that coffee/lunch/dinner/drinks and a hundred dollars should equal sex in the hotel down the block, then you leave him right there and then. We are ladies looking for gentlemen with the means to provide for us and support us. If he’s only interested in sex in exchange for money, then he’s looking for an escort, not a sugar baby. (Note: if sex in exchange for money is what you’re looking for, then go right ahead and make that cash, every girl is allowed to make her own choices!)
  • Agree to meet in a PUBLIC place - Always meet for the first time in a public place (A restaurant, coffee shop, bar, hotel lounge/lobby, etc) because your safety and comfort comes first! If he invites you up to his hotel room for a drink, decline by saying that is something you would love to do sometime, but would feel better meeting in a public space first. If you starts arguing or does not agree to this, drop him. You don’t need to waste your time on an asshole like him. 
                 ‣ Additionally: 
                          - Have your own transportation to and from your meet! Do not get into his car thinking you’ll save a little cash, even if he was kind and definitely legitimate! Personally: I don’t let POT’s get me an Uber home either, I don’t feel comfortable with them knowing my exact address.
  • Ask for a gift - While this isn’t something that is necessary to do, it’s something that I do. If you’re aiming for a gift, make sure to ask after you have made plans to meet or at least a day before you meet, this gives the POT time to either go shopping for you or go to an ATM for some cash. If you’re aiming for travel compensation, then feel free to ask a few hours before or even during the date, travel compensation is something usually all POT’s will agree to. This or this are the ways I use to ask, either one usually work flawlessly.
                 ‣  Keep in mind
                         - It is not a red flag if he declines to bring you a gift! At this point in your relationship, he owes you just as much as you owe him, which is nothing. If he declines, just say that’s it’s okay and then (if you still want a little cash) try the travel compensation method.
  • Text to confirm - One of the worst things is dolling yourself up and then coming out to meet, only to find that your POT actually couldn’t make it. That’s why it’s important to confirm your meeting a few hours before in a quick little text.
  • Stay SAFE - Safety has always and will always be the number one thing in the sugar bowl which is why you need to make sure you have at least one person who know’s who you’re meeting, where, and when. If you don’t feel comfortable telling anyone you know in real life, message me and I will gladly be your safety contact. In addition to having a safety contact, it is always a good idea to carry around a bottle of mace with you, for creepy POT’s and creepy men in general.

During Your Meet

  • Make an entrance - Often,the first part of the conversation happens before you open your mouth, sometimes it happens before you’ve even laid eyes on them. When you enter any room, have your head up and your shoulders down. Don’t strut, but walk gracefully, swaying your hips gently, you can even look up videos of models on catwalks and learn how to walk like they do. Be dramatic, walk like you’re the center of attention - you’re a sugar baby: you’re young, stunning, and seductive. Pause in the entrance and survey the room slowly, let your eyes to travel from one side of the room to the other, until you locate your POT. It may sound a little silly, but a proper entrance will captivate anyone, especially your POT. Knowing how to walk properly and make an entrance is useful in practically every aspect of your life, not just in sugaring. 
  • Keep the focus on them - I’ve noticed that POT’s (and SD’s in general really) love to talk about themselves, some SB’s will even go as far as to say that these men don’t care about the things you say unless it directly relates to them (in my experience this isn’t always true, it depends on the man). Try to find a way to refocus the conversation about him, you will easily become his favorite person to speak to.
                ‣ Additionally:
                         - If he shows pride, you give praise. If he says something, then pauses, and looks at you significantly, he’s waiting for the applause. Be there to give it to him. You don’t even have to think what he did was impressive. You just have to be there ready to dispense a pat on the back  Do not be over dramatic, smile, look impressed, and stroke his ego.
  • Pay attention when he speaks - Be engaged in the conversation: ask questions to further your understanding of the topic, make comments to indicate that you are paying attention, laugh a little to signal that you are having fun, smile to show that you enjoy being in his company, and make eye contact! If you look a person in the eye, it signals that you not only hear what they’re saying but are interested in it. If you have to look away do it slowly, this reinforces your interest and enjoyment of what you’re hearing.
  • Don’t fidget - It ruins your credibility. Often, stillness is compared with integrity. Those that can look someone in the eye and sit still are usually believed over those that try to say something while squirming in their seat. It’s important to have good posture as well, don’t slump in your seat and if you do, catch yourself and correct your posture. 
               ‣  Don’t worry:
                        - Your hair looks fine, your clothing fits you well, and your phone will not explode if you don’t check it for an hour. Your main focus should be your POT, not the little things about your appearance.
  • Relax - You might be a little nervous over the first date, but chances are, he probably is too! Some SD’s are nervous the first time meeting, this might be due to the fact that you’re much younger than he is or he might be downright intimidated because of your looks. Your job is to make him feel at ease and the easiest way to help him feel at ease is to be at ease yourself. People play off each other’s energies and your body language speaks volumes, so try your best to just relax.
  • End on a good note - End the date with a hug or a handshake (or a kiss on the cheek, if you like him), something physical so that you touch and it leaves him wanting a little more. If you went out for lunch/dinner, tell him how thankful you are for taking you out, how much you loved the food, and how he has great taste in restaurants

After Your Meet

  • Assessing him - A person’s appearance and demeanor speaks volumes about them. Observe not his wallet, his cufflinks, or his shoes, but his mannerisms, his eloquence, and his overall conduct. Many good sugar daddies may not look the part, but they will act it. There’s no forcing chemistry, so it’s best to figure that out right away before delving deeper.
                  ‣ Questions to think about:
                         
    - Does he ask you first what you want to eat?
                         - Is he interested in what you’re saying?
                         - How does he talk about his family, his employees?
                         - Is he nice to the waitstaff?
                         - How much is he tipping?
                         - Were your personalities compatible?
                         - Did you have a lot in common?
                         - Was it easy to hold a conversation with him, or were there awkward silences?
                         - Is this someone you’d be comfortable being seen in public with, going on vacations with, and generally spending time with?
  • Send a follow up text - If the date went well, shortly after you meet (a few hours or a day, at most), send the POT/SD a text saying that it was a pleasure meeting him and you’d love to see him again. When (or if) he responds, you might be able to schedule your next date!
  • Think about your loses - If the date didn’t go so well, you got a free coffee/lunch/dinner/gift. If your POT contacts you and asks you out again, decline politely and wish him luck finding what he’s looking for.

Allowance Talk - Yes Or No?

There’s a lot of disagreement on whether or not you should speak about allowance with your POT on a first date. I’ve had POT’s bring up numbers over text/on the phone/email (prior to meeting and after meeting) and during coffee/lunch/dinner/drinks. In my opinion, let him bring up the allowance talk.

  • If he does, express your desires concerning allowances, gifts, and how the arrangement will work. Most arrangements end due to schedule conflicts and misunderstanding expectations, be clear about what you want. 
  • If he doesn’t, that’s completely fine too. You’ll most likely speak about it on your second date or over some electronic format.
  • If you touch on the subject but you notice he’s not too keen on delving into it at the moment, leave it alone. This sends your POT the message that you’re more interested in a suitable arrangement than the money, as well as that you are nowhere near desperate and while you are interested in him, not overly so. This lack of overt interest gives you more control of the relationship from the get-go. It also shows that he cannot control you or gain your interest with his money alone. This makes it easier for you to discuss the terms of the relationship, set boundaries, and negotiate your allowance later on.

What to Wear

Men are visual creatures, they love eye-catching arm candy, but most prefer elegance or casual classy to outright flashy. However, showing all your goods on the first meeting is not a good idea. Choose one thing to show off, this leaves his imagining and wanting more. Keep in mind where you’re meeting, as well. There’s no need to go all out if you’re just meeting for coffee.

  • If you’re meeting for coffee - Jeans and a pretty blouse will be just fine, top it off with flats or boots and you’ll be good to go. If it’s warmer out, a sundress is perfectly acceptable too.
                ‣  Keep in mind
                        - Meeting a POT for the first time in shorts is not appropriate, there is no need to play up the age difference between the two of you, even if it is hot outside.
  • If you’re meeting for lunch/dinner/drinks - A formfitting dress will do you good, especially if it’s dinner or drinks. Complete the look with a nice pair of heels and some jewelry, if you’re having trouble figuring out which jewelry to wear with what, check out this!
  • Makeup - Keep the makeup light and natural, opt for neutral colors rather than darker ones. Get your nails done, fill in your brows, foundation, mascara, light colored eye shadow, and lipstick/lip-gloss is all you’ll need. I prefer to top up my look with a slightly red nude lip (since my lips are full and the color makes them pop more), even though most SB’s suggest to stay away from all red’s.

So there you have it dolls, an ultimate guide to POT dates. Feel free to add on your own tips! Keep sugaring, dolly xoxo

for @portentous-offerings who is my sick buddy today. Feel better my friend ^_^ 

“She’s never going to love me.”

It was so quiet she almost missed it.

“What did you say Kitty?” she asked, her face still pressed into his back from where they were cuddling in her bed.

“Forget it. I shouldn’t have said anything,” he said, rolling over and giving her a cheeky smile that didn’t reach his eyes.

“Are… are you talking about Ladybug?” she asked softly, feeling the knot of guilt that had steadily been building over the last few months of this strange friendship they had fallen into.

He didn’t bring up her alter ego very often. The subject of romance in general always seeming to carry some sort of bizarre taboo whenever he stopped by for his increasingly frequent visits. Not that Marinette had minded. She had Alya to cry to about her lack-luster love life after all, and given how unwaveringly supportive he was about all of her other problems, it seemed silly to hold it against him that he was uncomfortable talking to a girl about crushes and the like.

His eyes flashed guiltily and he rolled back over, staring out into the darkness of the room.

“Really it’s nothing,” he said again, but he couldn’t quite mask the defeated tone that colored his words.

It was a sound she was all too used to. The same defeated cadence that had echoed from her own lips after her disastrous attempt at confessing to Adrien 5 months and 27 days earlier that no amount of Rom-coms or Alya suggested poster-burning had been able to cure.

“Chat, it isn’t nothing,” she said, sitting up and gently trying to pull him back around. He didn’t budge, still keeping his gaze obstinately fixed at something that she couldn’t see. “If it matters to you… it isn’t nothing. Not to me.”

“It’s not appropriate,” he said softly, “and it’s not fair to you.”

“Shouldn’t I get to be the judge of that?”

“It would be selfish-“

“So be selfish!” she said with a slightly forced laugh. “Trust me, you have a long way to go before you catch up to my level of selfish so I am hardly one to judge.” She teased her fingers through his hair, letting her nails scratch delicately against his scalp and felt him relax in spite of himself.

“Yeah right,” he scoffed lightly, “your strange phone kleptomania aside, you’re a pretty stand-up person.”

“Hey, I will have you know I have been working very hard to reform my phone-napping ways,” she teased, hoping to draw out a real smile from him.

“You stole Alya’s phone just last week!”

“That was a special circumstance. I told you so,” she pouted. “Besides, Adrien doesn’t deserve to be taunted like that no matter what Alya might say about it,” she added softly.  

She felt Chat stiffen slightly, his cat ear twitching at her words, and she was once again suspicious that he knew all about her romantic trouble regardless of their lack of conversation on the subject. She flushed at the thought.

“You are one of the most selfless people I know,” he said, reaching up to grasp her hand in his own and give it a brief reassuring squeeze.

The guilt Marinette was feeling was almost overpowering as the thought of the secrets she was keeping from him weighed on her like a stone. He had never questioned how they had fallen into such an easy friendship, and she had become too attached to having him as a part of her life- her normal everyday life- to be willing to admit the one-sidedness of it all. Here she was getting mopey over someone she had sworn she was done chasing after in front of a guy whose heart she routinely seemed to trample into the dust. Talk about selfish.  

“Please just tell me,” she whispered, her fingers resuming their seductive strokes that she knew full well would reduce him to a compliant puddle in her lap.

He was silent for a few more moments before finally letting out a small defeated sigh.

“I was just thinking about everything and I guess I just…” he hesitated. “She’ll never love me. I know that. I think on some level I always suspected as much.”

His voice wasn’t bitter or angry, and that calm resignation shattered her own heart into a million pieces more than the actual words he was saying.

“I think,” he continued, “I think I will be ok with it. She loves someone else. She doesn’t really say much about it, maybe to preserve our identities or maybe because she doesn’t want to hurt my feelings, but every once in a while she lets something slip and it’s not that hard to put the pieces together. I always thought it was so cheesy in the movies when people would say things like I just want her to be happy, but I think I get it now. She’s incredible and I am always going to love her, but she doesn’t need me to make her happy.”

Marinette could feel the tears pooling behind her eyes as the words poured out of him in his soft, even tone. Her fingers were frozen, buried in his lush golden hair, her breaths turning shallow and frantic as the words reverberated through her like an electric current.

She stared down at the boy beside her. Her precious, irreplaceable kitten, who loved her so fiercely and believed in her so much. Who was willing to call her out for her faults and yet somehow still believed her capable of rising above them.

“She’s smart,” Chat continued, his voice seeming to echo in the near silence of the night, “and I know that whoever she does choose is going to be someone who can make her happy. Somebody good and funny and able to keep up with her when she is at her best and keep her grounded when she’s at her worst. So I think I can be ok with that.”

She tried to imagine what her future would be with some potential lover. Her heart lurched slightly at the thought of Adrien, her own love that was apparently not to be. She brushed that thought aside and instead tried to picture a world where she was curled up beside some new face, running her fingers through hair that wasn’t blonde.

She had to choke back a sob.

The slight twinge of pain she had felt at the momentary reminder that she and Adrien would never be more than friends was nothing to the soul rendering terror she felt at the sudden realization that finding a new love would inevitably mean losing Chat.

They would still be friends. Of course, it wouldn’t be the same. It wouldn’t be like this. He would never impose like that. Not her Chat. Her partner who was good, and funny, and who had seen her at her best and her worst, who knew her better than anyone, and who still had never made her feel anything less than precious. Her dearest friend who just the momentary thought of a life without him made her feel like she was dying.

Chat let out a small self-deprecating laugh and Marinette wondered how she had ever been so blind.

“So yeah,” he said finally twisting back around to look up at her, “I think I’ll be ok. Even if she doesn’t love me.”

She gazed down at him, his brilliant green eyes glowing in the near darkness of the night, a tired smile on his face that she longed to see transformed into his usual infectious grin, as the truth hit her like a bolt of lightning.

“I do,” she said breathlessly, before leaning down to capture his lips in a long overdue kiss.

We Need To Talk About Ramona Blue:

TO EVERYONE WHO GAVE THIS BOOK ONE STAR WITHOUT READING IT:

First off, know that I am not going away. I am going to stand here and scream this from the rooftops as many times as I have to. Because I am tired of my voice and my story being drowned out. This book tells my story. If I get even one person to at least consider they might be wrong, if even one person buys this book because of me, then I’ve made a difference. 

I respect your opinion and based off of the original synopsis I completely understand why you felt that way - indeed I agree with you. I understand why the initial synopsis made you angry, really I do. The b.s. trope that lesbians (or any LGBT+ girl) can be ‘cured’ by finding the right boy is not just offensive and incorrect, but incredibly, incredibly harmful. And when it’s used as much as it is, it leads to people in the real world justifying their homophobic thoughts with - “I can f**k that girl, she’s secretly straight anyway. I can make her change her mind. She just needs the right guy.” Corrective rape is a very real danger and one that is directly impacted by words like those in that synopsis.

But this isn’t what the book is about. When the author, Julie Murphy @andimjulie, was informed of how offensive and harmful the synopsis/blurb was she started arranging to have it changed. Because here’s the thing: authors don’t get to write those. Some random person at the publishing house does. It’s that random person that made the harmful words and who misunderstood the book.

The new synopsis is up on this goodreads page now  . Please read it and maybe consider changing or removing your rating?

Because this book isn’t about 'lesbians can be cured.’ This book is about bisexual girls, girls just like me, who grow up not knowing that they are bi. Believing that because they like girls they must therefore be lesbians or because they like boys they must therefore be straight. I’m the latter; in this heteronormative world I spent years believing I was straight before I realised.

This book is for all the girls like me who think they fit into one box because they like someone and then one day, realise they have feelings for a different gender. It is about how confusing and scary and downright terrifying that is. It is about lying awake all night thinking “but does liking this boy mean i was straight all along?” “do i actually like him or is it because i’m supposed to?” it’s about worrying that you can’t change your identity because people already know you as a 'lesbian.’ Worrying that you’re just attention seeking or greedy or unable to make up your mind, that you’re on the fence and you need to choose.

This book is about the moment of relief when you finally find the name that suits you - bisexual. Or, perhaps when you decide that it’s okay to not know for sure right now. And how much weight is taken off you once you know who you are, and you have an identity.

I haven’t read the book yet but the new revised synopsis reflects that the book will actually be about those topics. You’re punishing the author for what someone else misunderstood and wrote as a harmful piece of promotion. Notice how different (and not harmful) the synopsis is now that it’s been written with the author’s suggestions instead of just by some dude? That to me suggests that the book itself, written entirely by her, will be much more like the new synopsis than the old one.

Oh, and you will also notice that I mentioned I haven’t read the book yet. So how then, you wonder, am I able to sit here and say that the book will be about all of the things above?

Because I am that girl. I went through all of those things. Mine was vice versa to Ramona - I believed that I had to be straight because I liked boys and if you like boys that’s all you can be right? Wrong. It was so, so hard for me to figure out who I am, where my place in this world is. It took me four years to get where I am (I’m 18 now). And I still haven’t finished this journey - my parents don’t know. I know, from reading this new synopsis, that that is what this book is about because I have lived it. I know because the author is bisexual, married to a man - she has lived it too.

Tumblr I just don’t get it. We cry and cry for more representation but when you have it you destroy it’s chances with negative reviews before it’s even begun. All because it’s the “wrong sort” of representation. You don’t want this bi girls story, my true story, because it shows that sometimes girls who like girls also like boys. Not always but sometimes. And sometimes we end up with those boys. 

Please, buy this book. Promote this book, please at least undo this low rating until you have read it. This book could have saved me so much heartache when I was fourteen. It could have let me know that I was not alone. It could have saved me six months of self-harm, an emotionally abusive relationship, bullying for being 'frigid.’

I didn’t have this book when I was facing all those things. But the next bi or pan girl could. We could save them.

Representation is important. Lesbian representation and positive, good representation at that, is important. But so is bi girl representation. And this book just happens to be one for the bi girls. This doesn’t have to be either or, bi girls existing doesn’t mean that lesbians do not. Please, let’s not harm each other’s chance at representation. Let’s support each other.

Please, at least let’s read this book before we give it a rating. Please help the next girl like me before she is hurt.

OFF THE CUFF HOMESTUCK THOUGHTS #3: THE SELF PILE DOESN’T STOP FROM GETTING TALLER OR: THE PROBLEM OF DEAD MARIOS

DISCLAIMER

IMPORTANT THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK

[CHECK THE TAG FOR MORE THOUGHTS]

So, a long-ass time ago, Rose and Dave had a conversation like this:

TT: After you go, what do you think will happen to me?
TT: Will I just cease to exist?
TG: i dont know
TG: i mean your whole timeline will
TG: maybe
TT: Maybe?
TT: Is there a chance it’ll continue to exist, and I’ll just be here alone forever?
TT: I’m not sure which outcome is more unsettling.
TG: the thing with time travel is
TG: you cant overthink it
TG: just roll with it and see what happens
TG: and above all try not to do anything retarded
TT: What do you think I should do?
TG: try going to sleep
TG: our dream selves kind of operate outside the normal time continuum i think
TG: so if part of you from this timelines going to persist thats probably the way to make it happen
TT: Ok.
TG: and hey you might even be able to help your past dream self wake up sooner without all that fuss you went through
TT: I think the true purpose of this game is to see how many qualifiers we can get to precede the word “self” and still understand what we’re talking about.

This is the most important sentence in Homestuck.

I am dead serious.

Well, OK, I mean, it’s pretty important for understanding some major Homestuck themes and shit or something like that.

Also, I totally should have said: Pre-Retcon Doomed Timeline Non-Dreamself Rose but ultimately about to become Dreamself Rose who semi-merged with Pre-Retcon Alpha Timeline Rose and Doomed Timeline Dave aka Davesprite AKA future Davepetasprite^2 or as we all call them around the office, Davepeta, had that conversation.

Maybe you begin to see what I’m going to talk about here.

One of the major frustrations a lot of people had with the retcon was that the characters we ended up with at the end weren’t the ones we’d come to love and know throughout the story. Was it even worth it, to lose the characters we loved to the tyranny of Game Over? The victorious kids, with the exception of John and Roxy, were other people, with other histories, other goals, and other choices.

Allow me to submit that that may be the whole point.

SBURB is cruel. We’ve known that for a long time. It’s cruel not as Caliborn is cruel, but as the cosmos is cruel, as a supernova is cruel. It wants what it wants, and doesn’t care about how that intersects with the needs of humanity. It wants to make universes through a complex game-playing method, and drags hapless, vulnerable adolescents along for the ride. And most of the time it doesn’t even succeed, leaving its champions to rot in a doomed timeline or similar! Skaia’s victory is an amoral creation myth where individual human beings are just the carved pieces on the chessboard. (I mean, the other ones. Not the carapacians.)

Again, let’s consider the theme of VIDEO GAMES vs. REAL LIFE.

Homestuck, let’s be real, is basically some postmodern horror timey-wimey Jumanji. For a generation way more familiar with pixels than cute little tokens It’s easy for teenagers and in fact, basically everyone, to fantasize about escaping their life and slipping into some game world forever, where they get to do awesome things and be a heroic person.

Homestuck makes that literal. Congratulations, everything you ever knew is dead. You will never see it again, except your internet friends, who turn out also to be your family and other important people. I mean, from a distance, SBURB sounds like an awesome game, right? You figure out who you are and get to wear a cool costume displaying that identity. You get to make anything you want and enjoy this hyperflexible mythology tailored to YOUR CHOICES. HS fans talk all the time about how cool it would be to play a real version of SBURB. That’s a big part of the appeal of SBURB fan adventures. They put you and your friends in the story. Or your favorite characters! It sounds like a fantasy come true.

The thing is, as fantastical as it is, it’s also really fucked up, and ultimately you and your friends are being used. By a giant frog to let it have its babies. By the universe. By a smug blue cloud thing that doesn’t care about you at all.

SBURB does not care about you at all.

The funny thing, SBURB features a mythology with so many layers and nuances and seemingly human motifs about growth and self that you might search for some grand ultimate meaning behind it, but it’s not even human enough to have a personality, to be something you can argue with or fight. It just is. It’s all the cruelty and power of a god without any of the dazzling personality. It’s empty. It just wants to make universes all day long, or fail trying. It is a great, weird tadpole-making machine that eats children.

One of the big ways it doesn’t care about you is its attitude toward the self. Humans and trolls and whatnot prefer not to be relentlessly duplicated. SBURB says, oh yeah, let’s make tons of copies of the player characters and use them for a lot of different purposes.

There’s the dreamself, an essential bifurcation of identity (you are now and were always the dream moon princex) that sometimes gets merged into god tier but sometimes doesn’t. There’s doomed timeline selves, who exist ultimately to augment an Alpha timeline whose Alphaness is decided very arbitrarily and frequently by Lord English. There’s the you who exists before a scratched session and the you who exists afterward, who are two different people but started as one baby in an act of ectobaby meteor duplication, your player self and your guardian self. Dead timeline yous fill up the dreambubbles made by the horrorterrors and get endlessly confused with each other. Any one of these could be the you experience being at any given moment, and which one it is entirely arbitrary. Don’t like being Dead Nepeta #47? Tough hoofbeast leavings, kiddo.

To top it all off, in Terezi: Remember, we learn that every single time we thought someone changed from one self to another, was resurrected or something like that, it was another act of duplication. For every time someone’s died, there’s another version of them waiting in the Dream Bubbles, surprised that they’re not the main character anymore. And we have no way of knowing which is which. Even John, good old everyman John, may or may not be the person who died three or four times. It’s really impossible to say whether we’ve been following the same person throughout our story, or just the illusion of the same person, like a horrifying cosmic flipbook.

The retcon is a return to this same theme. Ultimately, there’s very little new in the changes John makes to reality except that they drive the point home.

John’s friends all died. John and his friends won the game. These things are both true at the same time, except those things may not have happened to the same people. There was a happy ending. Hooray! For, um, some folks who may or may not be the ones we care about. In fact, it’s very confusing, because from Rose’s perspective, Roxy is dead but came back to life, and from Roxy’s perspective Rose is dead but came back to life, except also she came back to life as a weird tentacle catgirl of pure id and self –indulgence. So there’s that. Um. Which Rose are we rooting for again?

Or wait: is it none of them, because the first Rose died in a doomed timeline, hundreds of panels and a number of years ago?

There’s a tension here which one experiences between saying it’s okay because it’s still the same people, and saying it’s not okay, because it’s not the same people at all. This tension is exactly what we’re meant to wrestle with. To put it another way, Homestuck asks if identity can work in aggregate. Are all Johns John, all Roses Rose, and do they all share in what they accomplish? Or are the final victors only accidents created by the whims and needs of the frog baby machine?

What I’m saying, basically, is that the retcon, in the sense that it pointed out our confused relationship with these characters, was already here.

In interviews and questions put to him over the years, Hussie constantly compares HS and SBURB to other video games, particularly Mario, which he frequently returns to as a baseline of comparison that most of his readers will know. One answer, from a recent Hiveswap interview, is particularly revelatory. To the question of “Why do you kill off all your characters?” Hussie replies:

[…]HS is supposedly a story that is also a game. In games, the characters die all the time. How many times did you let Mario fall in the pit before he saved the princess? Who weeps for these Marios. In games your characters die, but you keep trying and trying and rebooting and resetting until finally they make it. When you play a game this process is all very impersonal. Once you finally win, when all is said and done those deaths didn’t “count”, only the linear path of the final victorious version of the character is considered “real”. Mario never actually died, did he? Except the omniscient player knows better. HS seems to combine all the meaningless deaths of a trial-and-error game journey with the way death is treated dramatically in other media, where unlike our oblivious Mario, the characters are aware and afraid of the many deaths they must experience before finally winning the game.

The big man hass the answer.

Homestuck is the story of those dead Marios.

Other works, like Undertale, have engaged with this topic as well. But one of the major differences between Undertale and Homestuck is that in Undertale, between “lives,” one’s consciousness is preserved. In Homestuck, it’s discontinuous, and the value of the overall trial-error process is called into question by the fact that you, the player, may not even get to experience the victory. What meaning does victory hold if that is the case?

So, to put it in a nice thesis format:

One of the central themes of Homestuck is the challenge of reconciling an arbitrary and destructive pattern of growth and victory with the death and suffering you experienced along the way. Homestuck asks: is victory worthwhile if you’re not you anymore? And would you be able to know?

What even is the self? Is there such a thing?

If you were left feeling somewhat disconcerted by our heroes’ tidy victory and departure to their cosmic prize, or by how which Rose gets the spotlight is so deeply, deeply arbitrary, there’s a good reason for that. You’re supposed to be.

The philosophical problem of Wacky Cat Rose is insignificant next to the bullshit of SBURB.

And don’t forget—John and Roxy’s denizens helped them achieve the retcon. Ultimately, the victory they achieved was mediated by the same amoral system of SBURB, and was a victory over an enemy, Caliborn, whose power was created, perpetuated, and ended by that same system.

Okay, so here’s where it gets contentious. There’s an argument to be made, which I’m not sure how I feel about, that some of the character development that could have been in post-retcon Act 6 was left out precisely to push this feeling and play up this tension. Note that this is not the same thing as saying that they were deliberately badly written, but that they’re deliberately written to make us uneasy.That Hussie deliberately played with the balance between making these retconned characters feel familiar and making them feel eerily different to leave us feeling uneasy with the result.

I’m not sure I like that idea. It smacks a little too much of that “everything is perfect” thinking that comes sometimes from the far Metastuck camp. Some of the differences may also be the result of flawed writing. (See: Jane and Jake’s character arcs, which I might talk about later.) And I want to be able to critique those flaws. Ultimately, I think we still needed more time and development to figure out who these new people were—even if our goal was ultimately to compare them to their earlier selves. And again, more conscious acknowledgement of the problem from our heroes—especially John, the linchpin in this last and biggest act of duplication—might have helped drive this theme home.

Still, I think the Problem of Dead Marios is one of the most fundamental questions of Homestuck, maybe THE biggest question. It’s essential to understand it to understand what Hussie’s doing—or attempting to do— in the retcon and the ending.

I don’t know that Homestuck offers us a clear answer to that question. There are some confusions around the issue, too. Where do merged selves fit in, exactly? Clearly they’re a big part of the discussion, because Hussie spends some time in Act 6, especially near the end bringing the identity-merging powers of the Sprites to the forefront. (See also: the identity-merged nightmare that is Lord English.)  Can we even come up with a clear answer to what it means when a dead Mario returns to life grotesquely fused with Toad? How does he beat the game? Does he tell himself that the princess is in another castle? Or what if he merges with Peach? Are they their own princess? How do they know if they’re in the right castle?

Um. Anyway—

Interestingly, it’s not all grotesque—spritesplosions suggest that personalities that are too different don’t stay together long, so a fusion might rely on some inherent compatibility between the two players. Erisol’s self-loathing, sure, but also Fefeta’s cheerfulness. Davepeta seems to be a way of bringing out the best in their players, a way of getting Davesprite past his angst and Nepeta past her fear. Honestly, I know a lot of people don’t like Davepeta as the ending of these two characters’ arcs, but I can’t help but love it. They’re the ultimate coolkid. Cool enough to know they don’t have to be cool. Regular Dave got there, too, of course. But was his retcon assist from John ultimately any different?

Then, of course, we come to Davepeta’s speech to Jade in one of the last few updates before Collide. Davepeta suggests that there is such a thing as an ultimate self beyond the many different selves one piles up throughout the cosmos. A set of principles that describes who you are that’s larger than any individual instance of you. Your inherent Mariohood. (Maybe this is comparable to your Classpect identity, which attempts to describe who you are?) Davepeta even tells Jade, strikingly, that one might learn to see beyond the barriers between selves. Be the ur-self, in practice, rather than theory. This would be incredible news for Jade, who wrestles with the issue of different selves perhaps more than any other character. (There’s a lot to say about Jade.)

Honestly, I wish this ur-self idea had been developed more, and I honestly expected it to be. It doesn’t fully come to fruition, I feel. (Same goes for Davepeta’s character. Ohhhh, ZING!) I’m not sure it entirely makes philosophical sense, especially with fusion—I mean, doesn’t Davepeta themself disprove it? Or at least complicate it? Like, are they part of the ur-Dave or the ur-Nepeta? They seem to imply they’re BOTH? Does that even work? Does that mean that Marieach is all the Peaches and Marios at once?

(In fact, Bowser/Peach/Mario are but the three manifestations of one eternal principle. Also, Bowser/Peach are the true power couple. Read my fanfiction plz.)

And what, say, of Dirk, who ultimately ends up rejecting aspects of his other selves? It feels like there’s a lot more you could say here, and I wonder if Hussie would have said more, if he’d had time. What’s weird is, none of our victorious kids never reach an ur-self (though to their descendants, they become archetypal to some degree), which one might have expected. They’re just individual selves who happened to get lucky. Does that make them representative of the whole? It feels like something’s missing here, or like something got dropped at the last minute.

Same goes for the idea of the Ultimate Riddle. You’d be forgiven for missing it, but there’s been this riddle in the background lore of SBURB that seems to have something to do with personal agency in this overwhelming, overarching system. Karkat called it predestination, saying something like “ANY HOPE YOU HAD OF DOING THINGS OTHERWISE WAS JUST A RUSE.” But others have interpreted it more positively. My favorite interpretation, from bladekindeyewear: the answer to the Riddle is that YOU shape the timeline through your existence, personality, and choices, even when it looks like it’s all predestination. Ultimately it’s your predestination, your set of events, based deeply on your nature, that you are creating. Someone like Caliborn can use his innate personality to achieve power; someone like John might be able to use it to achieve freedom.

I definitely expected something like that to be expressed more explicitly. Like, a big ah-ha moment that helps John or Jade or whoever understand how to escape Caliborn’s system. Something like that would have been very helpful for a lot of our heroes, actually, who’ve been pushed around by Skaia and SBURB together, in finding a cathartic ending.  Once again, I wonder if something was dropped or rushed because there wasn’t time to put it all in. There’s places where you can see hints of that Answer being implied, maybe? But it’s kind of ambiguous.

You can see how the Answer to the Ultimate Riddle ties into some of Davepeta’s ideas. If your personality, the rules of your behavior are a fundamental archetype that goes beyond each individual self, then the answer to whether it matters if one self of yours makes it through to victory is an emphatic YES. You are all of those people, and by winning one round with Skaia, you’ve won the whole game, despite all the arbitrary challenges and deaths it heaps upon you along the way.

This may strike some as too positive for Skaia’s brutality, or again, some way of excusing flaws in many characters’ arcs, or unfair things that happen to them. To be fair, I don’t know that Davepeta’s necessarily meant to be taken as authoritative or the voice of Hussie. They may simply be offering a purrspective.

Hussie not choosing to come right out and engage with the Ultimate Riddle leaves the question of Dead Marios and what they mean for the victorious versions of our cast very open. I like that in some ways—let the reader decide—but I can’t help but wish we had more to work with in making that decision. Plus, it might have brought the thematic messages of Homestuck all the way home to tie them more closely to our characters and their experiences—character development being one of the things most people found most lacking in the ending.

NEXT TIME: All that wacky gnostic stuff probably

Gil’s Story Is My Nightmare

You know, it normally takes weeks if not months for my feelings to settle on a subject relating to fiction. Like, my first time through, it’ll wash over me, I’ll consider it a while, and then, eventually, I’ll come to a conclusion.

But Gil’s story rubbed me wrong on first run, and I easily figured out why.

Gil’s story is my nightmare as a gay man.

I know I’m not the first to sum it up, but I am SO frustrated and pissed off by this (and Mass Effect Andromeda’s handling of M/M relationships in general), I need to work it out of my system.

Keep reading

Let's Pretend (Bucky Barnes x Reader) Pt. 2

A/N: I finally did it! I finished part 2. Thank y’all so much for all the feedback it means so much to me (‘: also, I put a little Easter egg in here. There’s another marvel character mentioned in here that surfs Let’sPretend, let’s see if y'all can find them. (; (also, tags are open too!)

Warnings: Smut, Pornography, graphic details of sex, swearing. Alcohol.


Bucky knew this was wrong on so many levels. What he was doing was a complete invasion of your privacy, he knew that, but he still found himself staring at the neon purple background of Let’sPretend.com. He was lying back on the mountains of pillows he owned, the laptop Steve got him for Christmas was perched on his lap, illuminating his half nude body with purple fluorescent light.

He felt guilty, but he found himself in some weird sexual awakening since he saw the picture of you spread out underneath him, legs spread like an invitation. Bucky found himself replaying the images over and over again in his mind. Most of all, he found himself thinking about your reaction to the video. He was trained to read people’s body language (which he swore he’d never do again) and it was a habit he tried to suppress.

But no matter how hard he tried, he couldn’t help but notice how your legs squeezed together as you sat on the stool. The way you subconsciously licked your lips at the sight of him topless. And the way your eyes dilated. Those were telltale signs you liked what you saw, even if you didn’t want to admit it, but that gave him no right to do what he was currently doing.

He started off by reading the comments underneath the video first. He expected some vulgar, repulsive words from creepy old men, which is what he usually saw on porn sites. But instead he was surprised with something he never expected. There were actual fans. And by fans, he meant there were a shit ton of people of all ages (legal of course) and not one vulgar comment. Most of them were about you and he’d be lying if he said it didn’t make him smile.


Mr.Marvel1995:
“OMG XD Y/N IS SO PERF! <3”


BBYGURL140:
“I hope they do this in real life (;”


WinterBabexoxo:
“She’s so friggin’ lucky! I want a Bucky!! )’:”


WadeWilson1982:
“I’d give my left arm to be in a WinterY/N sandwich. Kms.”


NaniBearxoxo:
“Jesus that man is sexi AF. *faints*”


CookieThumper87:
“WinterY/N 4ever! ^_^”

He ended up clicking onto the next page, where he was met with more comments by fans. Some were on the creepy side, others were quite flattering, and some were just plain adorable. These people didn’t see him as a monster or a freak like most did. They saw him as desirable, which he truly thought would never happen again. What caught him off guard the most was the undying fascination with his metal arm. It took up almost a third of the comments.

At some point, he found himself on your videos.
There were at least a hundred in total. They ranged from solo shots, to something called “girl on girl”, which confused him at first, but the second he curiously clicked on the video and saw you and Wanda making out violently, he instantly understood. You had videos with almost everyone in the tower.

There were ones of you and Steve, which he may or may not have bookmarked to uh…save for later. There were ones of you and Nat, some of you and Sam (he’s never cringed so hard in his life) which nearly made him break the screen. He found it deeply disturbing that some people actually liked the videos of you and Tony. He was like an uncle to you. Bucky completely stayed away from the ones with you and Vision. Those would probably give him nightmares.

However, he still found that people liked the two of you together the most regardless. They had a special name for you, too. Princess Y/N, they called you. He was known as simply the Winter Soldier, which did disappoint him a bit. He discovered the term “shipping” and something called “one true pair” that the people on the site talked about. He’d never admit it out loud, but he felt a sense of pride that these people favored him out of all the others when it came to you.

With a deep breath, he clicked on the play button.

The camera immediately cut to Y/N on the same bed from before. Her pastel colored camisole was practically see through, just enough to show the audience the outline of her breasts. She let out a playful giggle as she raised her leg in the air, giving the camera a view of her barely clothed core. Bucky felt arousal hit him like a train when he spotted a small dampened area on her panties. As if on cue, she started singing lowly. Jesus, she even sounded like the real Y/N.


“Happy birthday to me…” she sung, while slowly teasing her nipple with her fingers.


“Happy birthday to me…“ Bucky felt his erection growing harder with each word. His eyes followed her hand as it trailed past her stomach and rested on her clothed core.


“Happy Birthday, Y/N,” she let out a whimper when she began slowly tracing her clit through her panties. Any self control Bucky once had, had jumped out the window. In a second, he slipped off his boxers and gripped his aching member with his flesh hand and began pumping slowly.

“You’re starting without me, doll?”

The deep voice caused a shiver down Bucky’s spine, forcing him to stop pumping his cock. The camera suddenly turned to a fully clothed Winter Soldier I’m the doorway of the room, his blue eyes staring Y/N in an animalistic way. He stalked over to the bed and towered over her.

“Tsk, Tsk, Tsk. What is rule number one?” he asks, gripping her legs and yanking her to the edge of the bed. A playful giggle came from her mouth, and God, Bucky found it the hottest thing on this earth.

She smiled up at the Winter Soldier through her long lashes. “Rule number one,” she says. “This pussy belongs to The Winter Soldier.”

He slipped his metal hand down one of her thighs and gave the flesh there a little smack, a moan escaped her trembling lips.

“Looks like you broke the rules, sugar,” he says huskily. “And you know what that means?”

“I need to be punished!” She replied, licking her lips and winking at the camera.

In a flash, he flipped her onto her stomach, her legs dangling off the bed so the camera had a perfect view of that her ass. In one swift motion, he took his mask off, revealing an identical face that belonged to Bucky Barnes himself.

It was by far the most erotic thing Bucky’s ever seen and despite his conscious screaming at him to shut off his computer and bathe in holy water, he found himself harder than he’s ever been in his life. It wasn’t even five minutes and his swollen member was leaking precum all over his thighs. He was definitely going to hell. But if this is what he’ll was like, then he’d gladly go willingly.

The Winter Soldier gently placed the black mask onto her face, and she made a sound somewhere in between a whimper and a groan. Her hands were pulled behind her back and held there by his metal hand while he pulled out a pair of metal handcuffs. With a sublet click, the metal was around her wrists, binding them together.

He let out an amused chuckle at the sight before him. Y/N pushed her ass against his clothed groin in a poor attempt at getting some friction. She peered over her shoulder at him and tried to speak, but the only sounds that escaped were nothing but muffles from the mask. Bucky groaned at the sight of her wearing his mask. He’d never be able to see it the same and NOT get a raging erection.

Her eyes widened with joy when he finally began unbuttoning his black pants and slid them down his toned thighs. Her thighs trembled with anticipation as he gripped his swollen cock and slowly pumped it with his metal hand, going as far as teasing her clothed entrance with the tip. Her head plopped into the pillows in front of her.

“Rule number two,” he says to the camera with a smirk. “Good things come to sluts who wait.”

In one move, he pulled her panties to the side, ripping the material away and thrust inside her. Y/N cried out in pleasure through the mask, pushing her hips back with each thrust.

“Oh fuck, baby. You like that?” He asks through gritted teeth. She whimpers a reply and nods, her eyes wild with pleasure. The only thing that’s audible is the dirty sounds of skin against skin, along with the Winter Soldier’s grunts.

Bucky was hypnotized by the way his cock glides in and out of her hole, glistening with her juices. He pumps himself faster, groaning loudly when he hears her muffled cries. He was enchanted by the way her moans grew louder with each thrust. He tried to imagine what she’d feel like. The tightness of her walls around him as he hits that special place inside her. Would she whimper like in the video? Or was she a screamer? He prays that she’s the latter.

Suddenly, she’s flipped onto her back again. Her little party hat dangled to the side dangling almost completely off her head. The Winter Soldier smiled down at her sinisterly before pulling out of her and pressing the tip against her pussy.

“Does Princess Y/N want her gift here?” He asks, teasing his tip against her folds. “Or here?” He pulls away and pressed his cock against the puckered ring of muscle of her ass. Bucky lets out a string of curses at the sight of her glistening holes. With a small whimper, she pressed her ass against his cock; all while staring up at him with the most innocent smile.

The sound she made as he thrust into her nearly pushed Bucky over the edge. His hips bucked into his fist, precum spilling from his tip and onto his toned stomach. No matter how good it felt, he knew deep down inside that it was nowhere near as good as the real Y/N.

Finally, the Winter Soldier removed the mask from her face. The camera zoomed in on her swollen red lips. “Oh, daddy, I’m gonna come!” She moaned. He placed his hands on the inside of her thighs and pinned them down into the mattress, the angle allowed him to thrust deeper inside her, making her scream out in pure euphoria.

“You like how Daddy fucks you, doll?” He grunts. His thrusts are stuttering against her hips and Bucky can tell he’s getting closer. She slips one of her hands between them and shakily began rubbing her clit in circles.

It doesn’t take long before she became a complete mess, her entire body trembling from the intense orgasm that was near. Her eyes are set on his blue ones as he drilled into her. She chanted his name like a prayer and Bucky wished he could make the real Y/N do the same.

Bucky’s metal hand cupped his balls and began massaging and tugging them in time with his flesh hand. The sensations created a sweet pleasure that made his eyes roll back. He’s sweating everywhere, but he doesn’t give a single damn. He’s so close, so fucking close and by the sounds of it so was she.

XXXXXXXXX

It was past midnight when you finally left Wanda’s room. No matter how much you drank, you couldn’t escape the embarrassing events that had occurred to you earlier that day. Wanda, however, had managed to go far beyond her limit. You giggled drunkenly at the memory of the woman passed out in her bedroom, the empty bottle of alcohol still in her hand.

You were way past tipsy, but still able to walk. Somehow you had made it down the long corridors without passing out or running into anything, which is what usually happened when you drank.

You were almost to your room when you heard a strangled cry. It wasn’t super loud, but enough to penetrate through a door. Following the direction it came from, you heard another, followed by a string of profanities. Whoever it was, they sounded like they were in pain. Your drunken mind tried it’s best to register this situation clearly. Who was even awake at this hour?

That’s how you ended up outside of Bucky’s room. You were positive the cries were coming from there. You knew about his nightmares, everyone did. They occurred almost every night and Steve had advised everyone to just ignore them and give Bucky his space. And everyone did just that. Nobody ever bothered him about it.

But these didn’t sound like typical night terrors. They sounded like something else completely. What if he was in trouble? Or dying? You couldn’t live with yourself if that were the case. With a turn of the doorknob, you peeked your head in and whispered his name softly; hoping it was just another bad dream.

You expected a lot of things. You expected Bucky to be in bed, thrashing around violently as he fought back against the imaginary foe in his dreams. You expected him to be shouting pleas of mercy or even Steve’s name. You even expected to be thrown out as soon as he woke up.

Bucky wasn’t in trouble at all. In fact, it looked like he was having a really good time.

The room was pitch black except for the purple glow of his laptop that was on his bed. He was lying back, the sheets pushed off the bed completely. He was nude with the exception of his black boxers that were pushed down to his knees as he furiously pumped his large cock with his flesh hand. Your eyes widened at the sight of it. You were no virgin and you’d seen your share of the male anatomy, but Bucky Barnes was big.

The tip was an angry red and you felt your mouth watering each time he ran his thumb over the head, collecting precum. His metal hand was massaging his balls, tugging on them gently. The groans he let out made the wetness between your legs grow. He had no shame either. He sounded just like the man in the video.

You curiously glanced at the porn video that was on the laptop and instantly filled with shock. The cries weren’t coming from Bucky, but from…you. He was watching the vid from earlier. And by the looks of it, he was enjoying it.

“Y/N!” He gasped, pumping himself faster. Hearing your name fall from his lips awoken something in you. You were practically dripping in your jeans and you contemplated whether on not to touch yourself right there.

Suddenly, the fake Y/N let out a scream of pleasure and you watched as the fake Bucky emptied himself inside of her with a loud groan.

“Ah, Y/N!” Bucky shouted as he came, coating his fist in his come. Your heart hammered in your chest as you watched.

Your first instinct was to run, so that’s what you did. You initially planned to close the door quietly and run to your room, but the alcohol in your system made that hard for you. Instead of closing the door quietly like you planned, you slammed the it shut. Creating a big echo that traveled down the corridors.

To make it worse, the sleeve to your hoodie got caught on the handle from the inside.

You desperately tried to yank it free, but ended up making the door slam against the wall loudly instead. Anxiety filled your body as you heard the sounds of drawers opening and closing from inside the room. No matter how hard you pulled or tugged, it just created more noise.

Suddenly, you heard the door open and you flew back from the force, landing on your ass with a thud.

Above you, stood a sweaty and fully clothed Bucky Barnes in the doorway.

You were so dead.

Tag list:
@seb-smut

anonymous asked:

"You dont want me" ladynoir

Ladybug sat at the top of the Eiffel Tower, her head in her hands, wondering how she could have possibly screwed things up SO badly. 

She heard the light footfall of her partner landing behind her. She couldn’t say she was surprised, he had never been one to leave her to stew in her own misery. 

“So…” he drawled, coming and sitting beside her, “that was an interesting broadcast today.” 

“It was a disaster,” she moaned, still not looking up at him, “I should just throw myself off this tower and put myself out of my misery.” 

“Oh come on, it’s not as bad as all that,” Chat said, patting her awkwardly on the back. 

She turned and glared at him. “It was a live stream, Chat! LIVE! It’s out there. Right now!” 

“True,” he conceded, nodding his head, “but it’s not like you said anything horrible. It was kinda cute actually.” 

“You don’t understand,” she moaned, slumping over so until she was curled up in his lap, “I’ve ruined everything! What sort of an idiot starts babbling about their crush on a live broadcast.” 

“Well, apparently you,” Chat said with a light laugh, cautiously reaching forward to play with the ends of her hair, “and about half of the rest of the known world. It could be a lot worse buginette.” 

“Do you think there is a chance he didn’t see it?” she asked hopefully, looking up at her partner’s thoughtful expression. 

He gave her a pitying smile. “I think you’re pretty much out of luck their bugaboo. You already have a ship name and everything. It’s trending on twitter.” 

“Ugh, that’s terrible,” she groaned, curling up tighter and burying her face against his leg. 

“I don’t know,” Chat teased, “I thought Ladrien had kind of a nice ring to it.” 

“This can’t be happening,” she moaned. 

“Hey, come on. What’s this really about? Is it really going to be so awful for the guy to know you like him? He might be flattered.” 

“It’s not that,” Ladybug said softly, “I mean, it’s MORE than that. I haven’t even told him I liked him- as myself, my not Ladybug self I mean. And now… let’s say he does feel flattered? That just means I have made myself my own competition! And it’s not like I can just go up to him and be like: Hey, by the way I’m Ladybug and, as you already know, I’m totally in love with you! Want to date me now?” 

“Oh god,” Chat said with a sudden sense of horror, “there are going to be so many desperate fangirls trying to do that.” 

“I didn’t even think about that! If he didn’t before he’s definitely going to hate me now. I might be the only person in the world who can simultaneously confess to her crush and make it harder for him to notice me!”  

“You really are one of a kind there bugaboo,” Chat said giving her another reassuring pat on the shoulder. 

“And what if this puts him in danger? I mean I might as well have stamped a butterfly tattoo across his back saying property of Ladybug, please exchange for one miraculous!” 

“Please don’t do that. I am told that models need to be very particular about what they put on their skin.” 

“It’s not funny. What if I honestly made him a target?”

“Hey,” Chat said “I promise you, if anything happens I will be the first person on the scene.” 

“Thanks,” she said gratefully, reaching up and catching his hand in her own.

“So, you’re in love with the model boy,” Chat said softly, rubbing his thumb absently against the back of her hand, “gotta say I didn’t see that one coming.” 
“Yeah well, it’s not like it really matters anymore,” she sighed, “it’s not like it would ever happen.” 

He scoffed at her, rolling his eyes theatrically to show his clear contempt for her pessimism. “So tell me My Lady,” he asked shifting slightly so that he could look down at her with a playful smile, “what is it that you see in this guy anyways?” 

“Wouldn’t you like to know.” 

“You don’t want me, so clearly you aren’t after the guy for his looks,” Chat said wiggling his eyebrows flirtatiously. 

“No,” Ladybug laughed, “although they don’t hurt.” 

“Why My Lady, was that you finally admitting that you find me attractive?” 

“You’ve always been attractive and you know it,” she said reaching up and flicking his bell. “As you can see I’ve just had my attentions elsewhere.” 

“Oh so this is a long standing attachment then? How long have you been dreaming of being M’Lady Agreste?” he teased poking her lightly on the nose. 

“Almost from the first day I met him. It will be two years next week,” she said softly. 

“The start of school,” Chat murmured, “you know him then?” 

“yeah,” she admitted reaching blindly around to catch his other hand and pull him to her like a security blanket. “We were in the same class in college and we still have a few classes together now. Plus our friends are dating so we hang out a lot.” 

“You two are close then,” Chat said a little breathlessly, “that… well that certainly clears things up.” 
“Yeah,” Ladybug said, “it’s not just some creepy celebrity crush. I mean, it kind of was that too. I have like 2 dozen photos of him plastered on my wall that I used to practice talking to because for the longest time I could barely string a sentence together around him, it was kind of embarrassing. I got over it eventually, but by that point I didn’t really have the heart to take the pictures down.” 

Chat gave her a warm smile. “I can see it now, you stuttering and tripping and shooting the poor confused boy adorable awkward smiles before running off in the opposite direction.” 

“Shut up,” Ladybug said but she couldn’t help grinning at her partners soft tone and fond smile. “I got better.” 

“I know.” He raised one of her hands to his lips and gave her a delicate kiss. “So you still haven’t told me what you see in this guy,” he challenged, “If I am getting demoted to your rebound choice I deserve to know what I am up against,” he said slyly. 

“He’s kind,” Ladybug smiled, filling with warmth as she thought about her love. “He always wants to see the best in people,and he… he is just good, you know? The kind of goodness that doesn’t come from ignorance or being sheltered, but that has seen pain and and heartache and loss and yet still chooses to be good. 

“That is high praise indeed My Lady.” 

“You aren’t going to make fun of me for this?” 

“No My Lady. If anything I am going to love you more for it.” 

She gave him another grateful smile before sitting up. The sun had begun to set and she knew she should be getting home. She probably had a dozen of so missed calls from Alya waiting for her. 

“Well who knows,” she said attempting to be flippant. “Maybe he’ll finally just reject me and I will change my mind about you Kitty.” 

“Wouldn’t that be a twist,” Chat laughed climbing to his feet and offering her his hand to help her up as well. 

“It would probably be for the best,” she sighed. “It’s not like we can be together. Not with Hawkmoth still on the loose. There is too much at stake. And I don’t know if I could bear having to hide my identity in a relationship.” 

Chat grinned again. “You are very wise My Lady.” 

“Mostly I am just telling myself that so I can feel better,” she admitted and was rewarded with a loud melodious laugh. 

“You know,” he said, eyes twinkling “you are probably right. Clandestine meetings, midnight makeout sessions, it’s probably better to hold out for the real thing.” 

“Yeah.” 

“Besides, I hate to break it to you My Lady but I have a sinking feeling that #Ladrien is not to be.” 

“And why is that Kitty?” 

“Well,” Chat said looking out at the sunset, “not to be the bearer of bad news but I have it on very good authority that your lover is very much spoken for.” 

“oh?” Ladybug said trying not to let her disappointment show. 

“Yes, completely and hopelessly in love. Someone at his school in fact.” 

“And who is this mystery girl?” she asked. 

“It’s right on the tip of my tongue,” Chat said his eyes glittering with something she couldn’t quite name, “it will come to me. I’ll have to tell you next time I see you.” 

“Well thanks for the heads up,” she said leaning over to give him a kiss on the cheek, “and thanks for cheering me up.” 

“Always My Lady. I should probably get heading home myself.” he pulled out his staff and and extended it. 

“Oh,” he said, shooting her a final grin as prepared to depart, “I do remember one thing.”
“And what’s that?” 

“The mystery girl, I knew there was something about her that I found particularly delectable.” 

“And what is that?” 

“Her parent’s own a bakery.”  

Fanfiction

Summary: Bucky asks to borrow your laptop and finds the smutty fanfiction that you’ve been writing on your anonymous Tumblr account.

Warnings: smut, secondhand embarrassment, fingering, metal arm kink

A/N: Thank you guys for being so nice to me today and sending me asks because I really like getting asks and they helped me feel better. I finished writing this at three in the morning because my anxiety is really bad because I’m waiting for my advisor to email me back about whether or not I can withdrawal my Physics class and I’m going really crazy waiting because I have a Physics test Thursday and welp. Anyway, that’s why you have this fic; I couldn’t sleep so I wrote this. Feedback is welcome and encouraged. If you want to be added to the tag list you have to send me an ask.


“Hey, (Y/N), can I borrow your laptop?” Bucky peered into your room, making sure you weren’t indecent first.

“Yeah, that’s fine.” You unplugged the MacBook from it’s charger and handed it to Bucky. “I’ll be down in the gym if you have any questions.”

“Thanks, doll.” His fingers brushed against yours as he took the metal computer from you. The mixture of his pet name and the tingling from his touch sent a need between your legs. “Mind if I just sit in here and use it?” 

“Not at all.” You headed out of your room and to the gym, ready to work out.

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without really meaning it

The Way You Said “I Love You” Prompts
@stileslydiah requested “24. Without really meaning it”

Watching Derek dote on someone is hard – harder than Stiles thought it would ever be, despite the fact he knows it’s insincere; despite the fact it’s the job and nothing more.

 It’s hard because Stiles hasn’t had those arms around him in months, hasn’t had opportunity to arrange a chance meeting on a crowded street in weeks, hasn’t had Derek’s eyes meet his and watched his mouth curl into a smile for him.

 Derek’s team have been fairly indulgent, letting Stiles tag along on the assignment to observe and allowing him to blend with various crowds just to be close to Derek. Early on, before Derek insinuated himself into their mark’s life, they even allowed them to talk on the phone, but that might as well have been in another lifetime.

 Sometimes, Stiles hates his job, hates Derek’s job, hates the fact they’d never have met if it wasn’t for their jobs because then he can’t hate it as much.

 Stiles is across the restaurant and he can’t tear his eyes away from the back of Derek’s head for more than a few seconds at a time, usually at the prompting of the agent he’s sitting across from.

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The Rebound

It was supposed to be shorter (; ̄д ̄)

(Also posted on AO3)


Draco ran his finger along the rim of his empty glass absently. The edges of his vision swam as he looked up at the bartender who raised a single perfectly groomed eyebrow at him.

“Another?” she asked.

Draco closed his eyes briefly, squeezing them until they ached, “Bring me… whatever’s next on the menu.”

“Yeah, alright,” she smirked, taking his empty glass, “What did you think about the French 75 then?”

“Nice, lovely,” Draco said absently, not entirely sure he could remember precisely what the last drink had tasted like.

“One Dark n’ Stormy, comin’ up,” she said brightly.

Draco sighed he fished a few more muggle notes from his pocket and shoved it on the other side of the bar. She had been very friendly all night not that he was surprised. There weren’t many people in the bar on a tuesday evening, much less a sad drunk wizard who was likely overpaying a great deal because he honestly couldn’t be arsed to check the numbers on his flimsy paper money.

He ignored her attempts at conversation when she returned and took the tall glass of what tasted like rum and ginger beer. Draco was prepared to stumble through something approximating a conversation when someone sat beside him, ordering a rum and coke and sending her off.

Draco blinked, his brow furrowing, the voice beside him had sounded familiar. Draco turned slowly so his head wouldn’t fall off and found the other bloke watching him curiously. The other bloke that looked remarkably, disturbingly, identical to Harry Potter.

Potter tried on a hesitant smile, “What’s a pretty thing like you doing in a place like this?”

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Creating Diversity from Generic White Script

So, I’m taking a screenwriting class, where we’re writing a short film script. I’m writing basically a story about an RA who’s struggling through the stress of like, cyclical catching students misbehaving, writing them up, school etc. My issue is, it’s a script, and something our prof has talked about is how it’s important to actively build diversity into the story to avoid the hollywood ‘Best (white person) For The Role’ which makes a lot of sense, but on the other hand, my story idea is currently… entirely generic, i.e. 

I’m at that point where I have to make a decision about whether it would be fruitful to specify the race/ethnicities of certain characters. But my problem is, some of the characters speak very little, and most of them say things basically any student would say in the same situation. Even my main character speaks mostly in a professional context using basic RA lines like ‘hand over your IDs.’ 

Because it’s a script, it seems really weird to me to say, okay this character is asian, but then there’s no real reason for them to be or not to be, say, black, or latina, or mixed, etc.? At this point, I have to decide moving forward whether to build my characters to incorporate some indicators of specific racial/ethnic background (linguistic quirks, etc.), but I don’t know a) whether I should or not because it seems necessary only because of trying to subvert an all white cast, and b) how I might even go about this, again, seemingly arbitrary process. 

So how can I build diversity into a script that’s relatively generic without it feeling arbitrary or canned? Or without specifically indicating race/ethnicity in a context in which it wouldn’t really be addressed outwardly?

[Redacted for readability]

Your professor is correct. It’s time to normalize People of Color in scripts, stories, in all forms of media. White is still very much the default for Hollywood and clearly your script as you struggle to place us just existing without it feeling unnatural or obtrusive.  You question whether it is fruitful to specify race where race won’t be addressed. I say it is. This is exactly what many of us want, just a story where we’re included and treated as human beings doing things, with agency, and not table settings and decorations for white characters to interact with.

It seems unnatural or unnecessary to specify race to you because you’re used to the default being white people who don’t need an introduction of race. It’s time to just stop feeling the need to have to explain our existence and just let us be there. Let us exist.

At this point, I have to decide moving forward whether to build my characters to incorporate some indicators of specific racial/ethnic background (linguistic quirks, etc.), but I don’t know a) whether I should or not because it seems necessary only because of trying to subvert an all white cast, and b) how I might even go about this, again, seemingly arbitrary process.

Why not add cultural and personal details, though? Even in the small ways? Honestly, if people are only speaking in professional terms and doing generic actions void of much emotion and personality, your story may come off as bland and the characters undeveloped and unmemorable. Perhaps I don’t have a full understanding of what you’re doing with this script, though.

The way people speak and the words they say, the way they react to things, it’s all informed by where we come from and who we are. You could show culture with a name, from the lunch they eat, the words they mumble in their native tongue in frustration…and those things come off as much more engaging to me than just White/Generic/Everyman does generic/ professional things.

~Mod Colette

I agree. We’d love stories where we’re the protags, but there isn’t a lot of hullaballoo about our identity. But that doesn’t mean wiping the slate completely.

(I’m thinking of a recent video featuring Martellus Bennett of the NE Patriots and how he actually has a book series with a Black protag going on adventures, and how he talked about the importance of having Black characters having their own stories that weren’t just about their identities.)

-Mod Jess

How to solve your problem: backstory.

Any generic script can be modified to PoC, depending on your definition of “generic.” If by “generic” you mean “ethnically uncoded"— well, you’re wrong. Generic is very ethnically coded. It’s white coded. You just don’t notice it because it’s the same markers in your life. If you watch something like Black-ish or Fresh Off the Boat, you’ll see the differences in ethnic coding in a family suburban sitcom.

If by “generic” you mean “uses archetypes familiar to the genre”, then you’re dealing with a situation where there really genuinely isn’t any race marker. As I mentioned— Black-ish and Fresh Off the Boat are family suburban sitcoms. These are generic plots, made different by asking: what would this ethnic group experience in this context?

You don’t seem to know enough about diverse ethnic groups in order to insert them into the narrative. Black people, for example, tend to dress more professionally than is required. This is because the markers of “casual and cool” for a white person (jeans, t-shirt, sneakers) are seen as “slob and inexperienced” for a black person. There are hundreds of examples like this, if you start looking.

As Colette said: you’re used to the default being white people. All of us are! This is something you have to actively unlearn. But the way to unlearn it is to ask the same questions you do in general character building. 

Things like:

- How does this character’s background impact their behaviour?

- How do others see them? (Note- cultural markers like the above dressing professionally example heavily influence this)

- How did their parents push them?

- How do they want to be seen?

In order to build race into your characters, you have to get out of your all-white box and start to understand our perspectives. Just like you learn to write a whole bunch of different white people in writing, learn to write a whole bunch of Black, or Latinx, or East Asian, or South Asian people. We’re all still people, but our experiences have shaped us for who we are— just like white people.
When building characters, you have to ask yourself all of the questions about who they are and how they’re seen in order to write anything good. These are the steps for any character building, so if you’re thinking there’s too much work involved… well, sorry, no, there really isn’t. Not in this industry. 

You live and die by your ability to create relatable characters, and in order to do that, you have to build backstory. And in order to build diversity in, you have to learn how to craft a PoC backstories that have just as much nuance and variety as white backstories.

~Mod Lesya

Edible Arrangements

(Hilly knows a couple things as a tadpole. He knows there’s probably a lax bro hitting on him, and that Bitty’s super-secret boyfriend may or may not be a middle-age lumberjack sugar daddy.)


Hilly knows a few things about Samwell’s hockey dynamics. He knows he is a tadpole; he initially expects to be hazed to the ground and forced to eat dog food or something like his roommate, who is currently rushing a frat. He expects the Haus to be dirty and filled to the brim with red cups and sticky floorboards. He also knows not to hang out with the lax team because Ransom and Holster said so, even though a cute boy who he thinks is from the lax team winked at him in his Intro to Anthropology class. He knows that NHL’s very own Jack Zimmermann, son of ‘Bad Bob’ Zimmermann and legendary hockey extraordinaire, is a Samwell alumni, and had slept in the very room which Chowder, their goalie, currently inhabits.  

But Hazeapalooza turns out to be nothing as bad as he expects (he even gets homemade pie out of it, even if Holster gives him the side-eye). And the Haus is cleaner than a sports frat house should be. The hockey team is nice (and surprisingly socially aware) and Hilly likes Samwell fair enough, but he misses home sometimes.

But Bitty makes things better. Hilly likes Bitty a lot. He likes hanging around the Haus and watching Bitty roll pastry dough with a practiced, methodical hand because it reminds him of how his mom used to bake cookies for him and his sister. Bitty doesn’t mind too much (he thinks) that Hilly may want to go on a date with a lax bro. Bitty bakes him peach cobbler with crumbles toasted a golden brown and talks about his family’s jam recipes. Bitty is open and warm and welcoming. However, the one thing Bitty doesn’t talk much about is his boyfriend.

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What Soul? - Peter Parker x stark!Reader

Words: 1318
Pairing: Peter Parker x Stark!Reader
Featuring: Tony Stark, Steve Rogers
Warnings: kinda cliche af
Requested by @betty234
Hey! I Saw your requests are open. Could you please write a Tony Stark x reader, or maybe Peter Parker x reader one shot, with the whole soulmate au where they have tattoos that symbolizes each other and he already likes her. Thank you so much”
Summary: In this world, soulmates are strange. The tattoos only appear after you have officialy met your soulmate; meaning some people never get theirs. They can also change what they look like depending on what is going on during the day. When your tattoo gets mistaken for a hickey, you have to explain what’s going on, but only find out it is much deeper then you could have ever imagined.
Authors Note: i havent actually written a soulmate au before, so this was fun! After the april fools joke today, I thought it would be a good idea to post a real imagine xD

Ao3

Peter Masterlist. Masterlist.


“Hey, Steve,” You sing-songed as you walked into the common room where the American flag himself was sitting. “I have a question for you.”

“Shoot, kiddo,” Steve put down the book he was reading and listened to what you had to say.

You showed Steve your computer. “I’m learning about World War Two…”

Steve laughed, “You know my experience was much different than what they might be asking you.”

You shrugged and agreed with him, but hearing his stories of those days were always interesting. “I actually had to help Peter with this topic last month,” Steve nodded, and your face turned to confusion. You didn’t really know many people your age, considering you’ve been homeschooled all your life. It was just easier for your father to keep track of you by having you home all the time, and it became much easier once the Avengers became a thing. “You know, Spider-Boy. Your dad is always helping him out with his powers.”

“Oh, right! The one that’s always super awkward around me,” You nodded, a little laugh following. You scratched your neck, moving everything ever-so-slightly out of place to reveal what was on your neck.

“Hey! What the hell is that?” Steve moved your hair out of the way and turned your neck so he could see what was hiding. “Oh thank goodness, it’s not a hickey. I would have killed you!”

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