it clearly is not working btw the thing on color theory

8-Clock Theory

Good morning! So originally I was going to include all this in my Saturday theory about Alpha, Omega, and Infinity, but it turned out to be too long. So here it is. I’m going to go over all the clocks we see clearly around Beth in S5 (there are probably fewer of them than you think) and then give you an overall sequential theory for the ones in Slabtown. Let’s start there.

1) The first clock when Beth wakes up. This shows many numbers, and we’ve always assumed it pointed to 4, 7, 8 and 10, which would mean it points to the episodes that are important in Beth’s arc in S5. (Ep 10 being when the music box woke up.) I’m starting to think now that we’ve interpreted that wrong all along. Don’t get me wrong, it could have multiple meanings. I think most of Gimple’s symbolism functions on multiple levels. Perhaps what we thought before was also right. But now I’m looking at wider shots. In other cases, the clock numbers seem to represent seasons, not episodes.

Mini-Theory about Opening Clock:

The first shot shows 3, 4, 5, 6. But notice the 3 and 6 are cut off, which means it’s focusing on 4 and 5. 

Obviously Beth was in S3, but I think this is showing which seasons Beth will be in for the current arc. In other words, since Gimple took the reins. Perhaps you could even argue, the seasons in which she’s gets (some of) Andrea’s CB arcs.

The next shot shows 7, 8, and 9. But notice that 7 is cut off, where 8 and 9 are not. 

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Marinette's Fashion dedication and all the work she puts into details

I’m more posting this after RE-WATCHING CLIMATIKA FOR THE FIFTIETH TIME.

AND ONLY JUST REALIZING HOW SERIOUSLY EPIC MARINETTE IS.

I love the post going around saying that Marinette isn’t shy, she isn’t, but has a lot of spunk. I almost want to expand on that with her fashion designer-ness. Not really to inform anyone because I’m pretty sure everyone under the sun has noticed except me because wow, do I feel slow not realizing!

How long have I been in this fandom again?!?!!?!

So, most obviously, we learn in-show that Marinette has made hats, loves making hats:

“No, Manon, it’s not done yet!”

“Everything is handmade…”

“Voila!”

And even a banner:

(If I’m missing something, please do tell! :D )

All of those were obvious, she and others say outright that Marinette has made those things.
We even see her making the Pigeon Hat for the competition:

So why do I care so much about this? Because it wasn’t until I re-watched episodes yesterday that I noticed Marinette’s purse:

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stein is a witch: second edition

HAPPY HALLOWEEN! in honor of this, most sacred of months, i am rereleasing an updated version of the only truly good fantheory i ever produced. now with even more tangents and unnecessary detail!

THE TL;DR VERSION:

soul eater plays loose and fast with its worldbuilding and isn’t always totally consistent with how things work, but am i gonna handwave any of that? hahahahahahaha nOPE. one of those inconsistencies? probably the most egregious? stein uses magic within the first few chapters of the series, possibly more than once, and WE ALL KNOW WHAT THAT MEANS

THE LONG VERSION is below the cut, with extended explanation, stupidly complicated analysis based on at least three different assumptions i’m making, and HEY even a good breakdown of how the witch gene actually works! it’s all here, and it’s all (technically speaking) not canon. but it could be!

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Tokyo Ghoul:re Chapter 32 Questions.

Hello! So, this week’s chapter was full of symbolism. Also, many questions about Kaneki and Sasaki. Let’s start, shall we?

First, some general questions:

Anon said: Several things I noticed in the new ch: 1. Saiko calls Akira Mama and Haise Maman haha 2. Any reason why Urie’s mouth is occasionally not drawn? 3. A lot of new characters named and emphasized on… im guessing most of them will end up dead 4. Suzuya’s hairpin and stitchings now look like “XX” = Judgment tarot card? 5. Mutsuki’s wearing the eyepatch gift ^^

I doubt those characters will die; Ishida-sensei doesn’t really kill characters that often. As for Mutsuki, he was scared of becoming like Sasaki…

…but now he wears an eyepatch; I assume he might start to resemble Kaneki at some point (hopefully, positive aspects). I mention the rest of your observations bellow.

Anon said: Things in the new chapter that are strange: the checkered floor promoted investigators are on, the 8pointed star floor during the scene with Akira and Haise (8pt star means redemptiona and regeneration) and I read a theory that Shironeki has bad intentions (just look at how sinister he looks in the color drawing of him with a birdcage and lets not forget that Haise’s name means “wren” = a bird). Plus he clearly wants Haise to disappear :( boooo

The CCG has been associated with checkers before.

As for the star, it is called Star of Lakshmi:

In Hinduism, it represents Ashtalakshmi, the eight forms of Wealth of the goddess Lakshmi (goddess of wealth, love, prosperity, fortune, and the embodiment of beauty); she is said to provide wealth in its 16 forms: knowledge, intelligence, strength, valor, beauty, victory, fame, ambition, morality, gold and other wealth, food grains, bliss, happiness, health and longevity, and virtuous off-springs.

As for the Ashtalakshmi, these are:

  • Aadi-Lakshmi (The Primeval Goddess) or Maha Lakshmi (The Great Goddess)
  • Dhana-Lakshmi or Aishwarya Lakshmi (The Goddess of Prosperity and Wealth)
  • Dhaanya-Lakshmi (Goddess of Food grains)
  • Gaja-Lakshmi (The Elephant Goddess)
  • Santana-Lakshmi (The Goddess of Progeny)
  • Veera-Lakshmi or Dhairya Lakshmi (The Goddess of Valor and Courage)
  • Vidya-Lakshmi (The Goddess of Knowledge)
  • Vijaya-Lakshmi or Jaya Lakshmi (The Goddess of Victory)

Could mean that the CCG promotes prosperity and wealth both for the investigators and the civilians (which includes getting rid of the Ghouls). I talk about Sasaki and Kaneki bellow.

About Juuzou

Anon said: juuzou now has an XX, and is a special class. can you explain what it means?

Juuzou has matured quite a lot ever since the ending of Tokyo Ghoul. He lose Shinohara (his mentor, friend and father figure), but ever since, he started to show real concern for his friends and squad members:

Also, he recently got closure regarding Big Madam:

We could say that he’s drastically changed for the better, which is what The Judment is all about:

Judgment (XX): represents rebirth, inner calling, absolution, reflection, taking a different path, finding absolution and self-evaluation.

Anon said: could suzuya maybe become the investigator to surpass arima? he isn’t quinx but neither is arima, and suzuya’s promotion at such a young age is ‘unheard of since arima’ and his abilities aren’t bad, so I’d say there is a possibility for it at least. also, out of the quinx squad who do you think could be the “new arima”, if anyone?

I doubt it; while Juuzou has managed to reach the same Rank as Arima at around the same age, I highly doubt he is as strong and capable as the latter. Also, it’s been implied that before anyone can surpass Arima, Haise will have to do it first:

Some questions about the Quinx

domo1383​ said: Hey love you’re blog btw. I don’t exactly have a theory but more like an observation. I’ve noticed that ishida draws Urie without a mouth quite often. Do you think there’s an expiation or reason for this?

I assume it represents his habit of keeping everything to himself (feelings, opinions and thoughts). Whenever he’s shown without a mouth is usually when he is upset or disagrees with something, but doesn’t say anything. Thanks for the support!

lotseme said: Hey! I was wondering shouldn’t shirazu receive an award for taking down nut cracker?

He would receive the White Wing Award; however, Shirazu didn’t defeat her by himself, Hayashimura and Saiko helped too. I assume that’s the reason he didn’t receive any awards. Still, it is implied that he will receive a new Quinque made out of Nutcracker’s Kagune (wonder if it’s a Chimera):

Anon said: Do you know why Saiko calls Haise Maman? 

Saiko never really had a mother figure. While she has her mother, the latter one didn’t care much about Saiko and her brother (even to the point of not caring about the risks of the Quinx Surgery just because there was a money compensation). That’s why she calls Haise and Akira “mama”.

Both of them care for her in their own ways: Haise gives her constant support and displays of affection, while Akira cares for her health (Sasaki spoils Saiko a lot while Akira is more reasonable and strict). They both give Saiko what she expected from her mother.

As for why she calls them that, she can’t call both of them “mama” or “maman”; guess that’s why she chose to call them the same in a slightly different way.

Anon said: what are your opinions on mutsuki’s two-rank promotion and the “will lie again” business? (where is that “will lie again” from anyway?) I think he did deserve a promotion but two ranks is maybe a bit much; but it seems that in the tag there are people hating mutsuki for it really much and I’m confused. thank you for all the hard work you do!!!

Thanks for the support! First things first. The “Will lie again” has appeared twice. The first one, in Ishida-sensei’s blog and the second one, in TG:re Volume 2 (it features a picture of each Quinx with a quote: Mutsuki - Will lie again, Urie - Will keep mouth shut again, Shirazu - Will carry the burden again, Saiko - Will sleep again). 

The reason everyone was pissed is because at that moment, we only had the spoiler images; in them, we saw Mutsuki getting a two rank promotion because of getting information on the Auction, infiltrating and helping taking down Big Madam, but we didn’t know what had happened to Urie. People assumed that Mutsuki lied about helping with Big Madam, taking away Urie’s credit. Now everyone knows the truth and they’ve calmed down a lot.

As for the two rank promotion, it’d only happened once before: Arima (of course); he got it for defeating Yoshimura while he was still a teenager. Compared to that, what Mutsuki did seems quite simple, but we need to consider that he has been a ghoul investigator for less than a year, he has almost no experience and that he is weaker than other investigators and the rest of the Quinx. Even Haise states that Matsuri was basically sending Tooru to his death (and he knew it). Yet, he managed to survive and achieve a few things, the most important one being the fact that he finally overcame his fear to power and is now willing to fight for his and his squad’s sake. Yes, I do believe that a two rank promotion might have been a bit too much, but I don’t think that he didn’t deserve it.

Anon said: I noticed something with the update of the latest chapter. It seems as if each of the Q’s have at least one ghoul they can relate to. For example: Shirazu want’s money for a yet to be known reason and his ghoul was Nutcracker who wanted money to be beautiful. Saiko has Hinami. Urie we still don’t know but it could be himself, and Tooru has two. Kenae and Torso. What do you think this means in terms of character development?

We recently saw that Nutcracker’s death, or rather, her last words affected Shirazu quite a bit. Torso seems to still be obsessed with Mutsuki, but I doubt Tooru would run away if they meet again. I wouldn’t say Kanae will have a great impact in Tooru, rather Sasaki (especially since he blames him for Tsukiyama’s depression). Saiko is pretty similar to Hinami, but I think she might also be involved with Scarecrow (he speaks with PS symbols). Urie has yet to find an adversary of some sort. All this ghouls seem to impact the Quinx in different ways; for instance, Shirazu might start to see ghouls as similar to them, while Mutsuki might face his fears (becoming like Sasaki, being hurt).

Anon said: Is Takeomi Kuroiwa the new addition to the Quinx?

I doubt it, but he is a lot closer to them now (maybe he’ll try to become a Quinx at some point).

What happened to Tsukiyama and relationship with Kanae

Anon said: What’s wrong with Tsukiyama? Is it that he just hasnt eaten anything in a while or is his hunger insatiable because none of them taste as good as Kaneki smelled?

It seems like he goes through long periods of starvation until it becomes too much. For instance, last time we “saw” him he was serene:

And now he’s at the verge of insanity:

His Kagune is even eating him, similar to what happened at Kanou’s lab with one of the failed experiments.

However, there’s a ton of skulls in his room…

…which resembles to this:

I think he only eats when it’s absolutely necessary, and he only eats ghouls now.

Anon said: SoTsukiyama and Kanae are brothers? I didn’t understand very well that, and the last part when Shuu appears surrounded by bones, his face looks like he has a Kakuja mask… Do you think he began to cannibalize un hopes to taste something like Kaneki?

I doubt they are brothers; I think Tsukiyama was talking figuratively. At any rate, they could be cousins or maybe their families were connected somehow.

Anon said: What do you think about Tsukiyama in Ch. 32 and Kanae’s new backstory that sheds a little more light on their relationship? Do you have any predictions for whats to come for the two of them?

Now we know why Kanae cares that much about Tsukiyama. I assume that after Shuu returns to the way he was (Haise will probably be involved in that) they will be closer than before (for instance, we never knew of Kanae’s existence until :re). Also, I’d like to mention something interesting about this:

That rose, the Duftwolke, tends to re-bloom very quick; hopefully that means that Shuu will be our favourite Gourmet again soon. Also, that flower is considered to be a nexus between Asia and Europe.

Anon said: Tsukiyama’s room also has checkered floors(?)

Not really. Checkers alternate between black and white squares. His room is normal:

Anon said: Ch 32 of TG introduced Tsukiyama… and ch 32 of TG re introduces… TSUKIYAMA. How does Ishida Sui do this?! He has a parallel for EVERYTHING. 

I think that’s the reason why last chapter was number 31.5; so that he could make that happen. Still, it IS pretty impressive.

Hinami’s fate

Anon said: Did Hinami lie that her name is Yotsumi Fueguchi? Why is Haise saying “Yotsume, aka Fueguchi”?

Yotsume is her alias. As for Fueguchi, that’s the name Amon and Mado Kureo were able to discover (thanks to Amon retrieving Asaki’s mask after seeing Ryouko burying it):

I guess that the CCG doesn’t care enough to ask Hinami for her own name; they have her alias and family name, after all.

Anon said: Have you seen how Haise’s hair is split exactly black and white now? Seems like the personality merging will begin soon?? And it seems like Akira Mado doesnt want Haise to find out abt his past from Hinami… thoughts? 

I talk about Kaneki and Haise bellow. As for Akira, I doubt she is trying to prevent Haise’s memories to come back; rather, she wants vengeance for her father (please, don’t hate on her; as far as she knows, her father didn’t deserve it).

Anon said: im so scared and frustrated i dont want hinami to die… will she die? what do you think? will ayato save her? will haise save her? or will akira kill her? ;-;

I doubt she’ll die, but I don’t think Aogiri will rescue her. Maybe Kaneki will do something.

About Haise’s Memories

Anon said: What is your speculation on who the unnamed person with glasses that Kaneki sees a vision of? I originally thought that maybe it’s Arima or Takatsuki Sen but Mado is in the panel before so I’m like what?? How would Kaneki even have memories of someone else because it seems like a convo that took place in the CCG betwn. Amon and Mado you know?

That’s Touka. It’s from the time she and Kaneki went to divulge fake information about Hinami.

acataleptic-thoughts said: Hello! Firstly I’d like to say thank you for your hard work, it’s always a pleasure reading analyses from you! ^ ^)/ I hope this isn’t too early, but regarding Chapter 32, when Haise mentions 'a sharp pain gouging out the back of his eyes’ accompanying his flashbacks does it refer to him previously (as Kaneki) getting stabbed by Arima or having RC suppressants injected by Yamori? The former seems very likely but I was just wondering if there’s a significance to the possibility of either event. 

Thanks for the support! It’s nice receiving messages like yours. I assume it was the memory of Arima stabbing him in the eyes, mostly because Jason only injected him in the left eye and Haise mentions both his eyes.

Also, the fact that he says “the back of my eyes” further supports this theory. If you remember, when Arima stabbed Kaneki first, it was from the back of his head through his eye:

centipede1000 said: I feel like arima is starting to feel bad to what he’s done to Kaneki and is sorrowful as kaneki is gradually starting to remember him, your thoughts?

This depends on how much he cares. Let’s say for a moment that yes, he cares and considers Haise a friend; Arima would surely be worried if he saw Haise in pain even though he’s not hurt and he would be sad if he realized that Sasaki remembers what he did to him. I mentioned recently that most people don’t treat Arima as a human, so losing Haise would take a big toll on him. Still, we don’t know for sure if he cares, so it’s impossible to know how will he react.

About Kaneki and Sasaki

What’s up with the fungi that Ishida mentions in the chapter.

First things first, Kaneki doesn’t talk specifically about the Caterpillar Fungus (Ophiocordyceps Sinensis), he talks about Cordyceps as a whole.

Before getting into symbolism, let’s talk about biology: basically, what cordyceps do after they infect an insect is replacing the insect’s tissue, eventually developing some weird looking structures full of spores. Some of the different species of Cordyceps are even able to control the insects (for instance, they can control them so that they reach a place where the spores will be able to infect as many insects as possible). For some reference, in the game The Last of Us the zombie-like creatures have been infected by a mutation of Cordyceps (yes, that’s the reason I know so much about it I was 15 and found it fascinating). Something really important: most of the species germinate only during Spring.

Now, about symbolism, there isn’t that much: it is widely used in traditional medicine in China and Tibet for many different purposes, but the general idea of it is “something that purifies the body from evil”. Near the end of the first part of the manga, Kaneki had started doing evil things (not on purpose, of course). When he loses his memory and lives under the identity of Sasaki Haise he resembles the original Kaneki; we could see Haise as the cure for the evil Kaneki had became.

Another symbolism that I found is in the name. Both in Chinese (冬虫夏草) and in Tibetan (དབྱར་རྩྭ་དགུན་འབུ) the name translate to “ winter worm, summer grass”. This correlates with what I said before about the germination period: whatever is going to happen to Kaneki and Sasaki, it will end when summer comes.

Finally, the symbolism with the Cordyceps as a whole is that of an insect that later becomes one with the fungus. It doesn’t become entirely fungus, but it can’t go back to the insect. This means that Kaneki and Haise will eventually become the same.

Anon said: In chap 32, what do you think about little shironeki told haise "make sure to disappear. that you don’t erase me” ? Does the translation in other sub has the same meaning? I am so excited our kaneki will back soon..

(Technically, Kaneki was never gone; most of his traits are still present in Haise).

Anon said: The translation was weird so Im confused: Is Shironeki telling Haise to disappear so that Haise won’t erase Kaneki or is Shironeki telling Haise to remain to not erase?

Right now, the only translation available is by Imperial Scans; recently, TwistedHelScans started translating TG:re, but they are currently at the first chapter.

I couldn’t find the Japanese version of the chapter, but in the Chinese version, the “to disappear” part is in small letter, while the “that you don’t erase me” is a lot bigger. This suggests that little Kaneki thought the first part, while he told Haise the second part. As for the meaning of this, I mention it bellow.

Anon said: Do you think Kaneki wants to make Haise disappear and take over his body again? or is there a chance of them mixing and becoming one? I don’t want poor Haise to suffer

Anon said: In haise’s flashback kaneki said that he want haise to disappear… i am kinda sad tho, but does it mean that kaneki inside haise also wants to erase haise??? Does he does not want haise to exist? ~.~

As I mention above, I believe that they will eventually become the same person. As to why does Kaneki want Haise to dissapear, it’s simple: neither Kaneki nor Haise fully understand the other.

While Haise has finally acknowledged Kaneki, he is still scared of his memories and what will happen to him once he remembers. He also doesn’t understand why is Kaneki so neutral/hostile towards him.

As for Kaneki, who fully remembers, he doesn’t like the fact that Haise is with the CCG; he doesn’t like that Haise is so weak and that he is the one in control of what used to be his body.

However, Kaneki himself mentions that as Haise remembers, he will start to fade:

Still, Kaneki hasn’t realised that, at the same time, he will start to understand Haise’s perspective and feelings. 

Another thing we need to notice is that little Kaneki looks around two years older than how he looked in Christmas:

I assume that, as they merge, he’ll reach the same physical appearance and age as Haise (presumably by the end of Spring).

Anon said: I kinda feel like Kaneki is acting strange, not at all like himself. He’s constantly saying that he and Haise are different people, but Hinami said the exact opposite. Do you think the Kaneki in Haise’s head isn’t entirely Kaneki, but just a representation of his mental struggle with himself and his past? And somehow an embodiment of how he feels about his past self? Sorta like how Rize represented his ghoul side?

I assume that Kaneki’s physical appearance has a lot to do with Haise’s perception of him (for instance, why instead of Centipede he now sees a child). As for why do Kaneki and Haise see themselves as different people while Hinami recognized them both as the same, it is because they don’t want to accept that they are the same (really weird, if you ask me).

Anon said: When Kaneki is talking to Haise and Haise looks up at the little Kaneki, is it just me or does his eye veins look like “XIV”? It totally caught me off guard that I noticed it since Im quite bad at catching details 

I highly doubt that’s meant to be a number, but I guess it’s a possibility.

Tarot Major Arcana (XIV) Temperance:

  • Upright: Balance, moderation, patience, purpose, meaning
  • Reversed: Imbalance, excess, lack of long-term vision

Damn, this is long; I apologize for that. Also, seems like I worked on this one for 12 hours! I wonder if someone will actually read through the whole thing. Right now it’s almost midnight for me, so I hope you have a good night.

anonymous asked:

What happened at your old barn?

Warning: I am going to answer this in full so that you (and whoever is willing to read this) can understand my struggle with riding and how it has affected me today. Also, because it’s super important to learn to recognize signs of psychological abuse. Coaches/trainers are a huge part of our lives and they imprint on us.

AAES in Northern VA was my first real barn. I had learned to w/t and some canter on a friends pony in their backyard, previously, but it was very on and off, and I wanted consistency. I just started middle school and I wanted to get serious about riding.

When we went to check the AAES out, it was so beautifully deceptive: tons of stalls filled with all sorts of horses, a huge indoor arena, a fancy viewing room for parents, pictures of the trainer on the wall, etc. It’s supposed to be a dressage barn, and my mom thought that would be a good foundation for me, but we never really did dressage there.

It was required for new riders of AAES to go on the lunge line for 3 months (no matter if you just started or you you’ve been riding all your life. EVERYBODY. Mind you we never did no-stirrup or other balance exercises. Just regular riding in a tight circle) before being moved into a group lesson. For 2 whole years, I did w/t around the arena in a “follow the leader” type line assembly (except that we were told to be in a certain order, and that we could not pass each other. Sometimes we would have ponies in the front and big warmbloods in the back. Never made sense). Cantering was a privilege. We were in dressage saddles with long stirrups, not the best for beginners, and we always had to hold the reins at the buckle. If we even slightly picked up the reins, we would get a huge lecture about pulling on the horses face, being unfair to the horse, and being awful, careless riders. If you did it again after the lecture, you were immediately taken off the horse, no refund. Now imagine how spoiled and bratty these horses were, because we had no control over them as beginners. I had to ride this little mare that would lunge to bite other horses and I would get yelled at for letting her attack them or for pulling on the reins to prevent her from doing so. Also crops were completely out of the question, no matter what, and honestly some of those lesson horses needed them. They got away with everything. Spoiled rotten.

My mom had asked for jumping lessons because she wanted me to do something other than endless circles of w/t , so the trainer had her and other parents pay extra $, and all we ended up doing was trotting over poles. I trotted over a cross-rail twice out of 6 ”jumping” lessons (and mind you, all the horses have side-reins that the trainer would never take off. I hated those damn things. We had to tie them ourselves and she would check them before we mounted. I never got them right. Looking back, I think she always redid them to make us feel inferior).

Marina, the owner/head trainer, used to compete prix saint george. She’s from Germany, which is why we used to call her “the nazi” outside of the barn (and also because I had a sneaky feeling she was racist. She didn’t treat anybody well, but I always felt she was particularly harsh with me. I’m half indian btw). She taught most of our lessons, especially since she kept hiring and firing assistant trainers left and right. She never kept any employee for more than a month; she would fire them or they would quit. She was all about money and didn’t care about us. Sometimes we would have the odd lesson with a random assistant and their style of riding would be completely different, so we would get yelled at for using the inside rein to turn with the head trainer, even though it was perfectly fine with the assistant. Very confusing, and it was always our fault for not knowing better.

Us lesson kids were terrified of Marina…if we had problems tacking up (can’t find something, horse won’t take the bit, etc.) we would team up and help each other, because we knew that Marina would berate them if they asked her for help or if she found something wrong with the grooming/tack (which she always did anyways). She was demeaning and condescending. She was always composed. It was never “you stupid fuckin idiot why the hell do you even try?”, but just this cold, disappointed, “you will never be as good as me, or anything for that matter” attitude towards us. l don’t ever remember her complimenting me. The only positive thing I remember is that during a lesson, I told her I was going to miss my next lesson because my family was going skiing. She smiled and told me that skiing would make me a better rider. Thats it. Everything else was constant negativity, which was ironic since we were barely doing anything but w/t around the arena with loose reins. I especially remember her slogan, which was her saying “You’ll never be an olympic rider” with disdain every time I made a mistake. It was embarrassing when I went to France and my cousin who started riding later than me was a much better rider and mocked me. Trainers at the French camp thought it was ridiculous how little I could ride. I felt attacked on all fronts, nothing I did was right, and I never improved.

We were forced to attend weekly theory lessons, where we sat in this room and learned about anatomy/feed/dressage/etc. Marina, I swear she had a six sense, would always call on people when they clearly didn’t know the answer. The few times I raised my hand, I was never called. The many times I tried to avoid eye-contact because I didn’t know the answer, I was called on and humiliated.
We had these half-year assessments that she would make a big deal of. We started of with a color based on riding ability, and if you passed your assessment, you went up a color in ability. Those assessments were hell in 3 parts. 1st part was oral. You had to groom and tack up a horse while somebody asked questions about anatomy/breed. 2nd part was written, based on the theory classes. 3rd part was a dressage test. That was a joke, because none of us knew more than going around the arena and the occasional serpentine (and most of it was follow the leader). 60% was passing. Myself, and most others, would receive something just around 60-63%. AKA it was implied that we were useless shit and that we should be grateful/feel lucky that Marina pitied us enough to advance us.

The car ride home after a lesson was awful. All our parents carpooled, and it was awkward, because there was always someone who would cry on the way home. We all would comfort her or just stay silent, because quite frankly it was a usual occurrence. There was one girl, who was a bit on the chubby side but not extremely heavy, that Marina used to harass all the time. She would tell her that she couldn’t ride because she was hurting the horses’ backs. She would discuss a diet and exercise plan…all of this was said out loud in the middle of a group lesson. She would also tell parents how to raise there kids and point out flaws that weren’t even relevant to riding. Marina was an awful human being.

It came to the point where I was becoming very emotionally fragile. I hated being scolded. I just couldn’t answer her anymore, I didn’t know what to say. Instead of constantly apologizing, I just nodded my head or gave no response. Even during our rides, I would zone out (which was not hard to do since I was never line leader). It was to the point where she would be criticizing me and I wouldn’t notice for awhile until she asked a question and then I’d snap back to reality. Almost like a Dissociative disorder. Except that’s not what Marina thought of it. This woman had the nerve to go to my mother and tell her that she thought I should get “checked out,” because she believed that I was mentally retarded.
I have always been an honors/AP student, top of my class. And I consistently got the best scores on the theory part of her dumb assessments. That was when my mother and I planned on leaving. Except we couldn’t, because the contract we had signed at my very first lesson dictated that we stayed for 2 years. If we left early, we would have lost a lot of money. Several painful months later, the very day my contract ran out, I said quiet goodbyes to my fellow riders after my last lesson and left without a word to Marina. My mom emailed her later, saying that we were never returning. I have not encountered her since. I don’t know what I would do in that situation. My biggest fear is seeing her again and crumbling in front of her.

I was at another barn for half a year, but it didn’t work out, and now I’m at my 3rd barn, my forever home. I cried uncontrollably the first time my current trainer critiqued me, but it’s now been 4 years and she hasn’t given up on me.
I still feel very affected by what happened at AAES. I am very hesitant/cautious/passive; It’s hard for me to approach people and ask questions. I still zone out when I’m in uncomfortable situations. My riding stalled for a while, because of confidence issues. I was never scared of horses or falling, but of failure. Competing has been, and still is a process for me. I have yet to come out of the arena/course and feel like I did my best. I have thrown really embarrassing hissy fits and had panic attacks at shows because of my anxiety. But the main effect of my experience is that I am extremely intimidated by authority figures. Teachers, choral directors, coaches…I always want to please them (and my perfectionism will make me go above and beyond regardless of my health) but I feel like I can’t or its not good enough. I don’t know how to act around them. A bad grade destroys me. Getting reprimanded by a teacher, even for something like talking during class, leaves me feeling sick for a week. I can’t look them in the eyes. I’m still a bit weird with my current trainer, but she gets it. I don’t want to go to the Olympics, I never did. I’m happy just riding.

I definitely have gotten better from when I first left AAES, but it is still a process. I know people who still ride there…some sort of sick Stockholm syndrome. I don’t wish for anyone to go through what I did.
Don’t sign binding contracts. Looks are deceiving; fancy means nothing. Obviously this is a trainer’s livelihood, but if they care more about the $, you are wasting your time and resources. Trainers should be direct, but if you end up crying half of the time, it is not worth the pain. Your trainer is not God, they are not perfect, they are not always right, they do not know everything. If you feel stuck in your riding, move on to somewhere else. I could go on.

Sorry this was so long…I even took out bits to shorten it. I just have so much to say about this and so many individual examples as to why Marina Genn and her facility, AAES, is a complete nightmare.