or any other programs like that

No ads on PARP

I was told that some people are seeing ads on MSPARP. In fact, we do not have any advertising on the website, so if you are seeing ads, it’s probably due to adware. Sometimes adware can be accidentally downloaded onto your computer by being packaged with another program or as a trojan. It then infiltrates your web browser and makes advertisements appear on webpages that don’t normally have them. 

While we cannot assist with removing adware, doing a simple Google search for “remove adware” should give you a number of websites with instructions on how to do so. The adware might be packaged with spyware or other malicious things like viruses so it is best to remove it from your computer ASAP. 

If we ever did do advertising, it would be through the community so members would have a way to put their own ads on the site. Like an ad for their chat or their Etsy store or something. But that would probably not be for years anyway since there are quite a number of things that need fixing on the website before we would have time to develop a proper system for advertising. 

video games are so incredibly hostile and unwelcoming to mlm and im really feeling this more than ever after Watch_dogs 2 decided to continue to queerbait its audience with Wrench and Marcus w/o ever confirming their relationship as anything other than a joke, and after Mass Effect: Andromeda decided to not include gay men in major roles out of fear of backlash from the straight male audience, and Persona 5 preferred teacher/student relationships to relationships between two boys of the same age and etc etc etc

like these are all on varying levels of being overtly homophobic but the theme is fucking unignorable; video games dont want to have gay or bi men and its undeniably because theyre scared of upsetting the core straight male demographic by confronting them with things like gay and bi men. 

like right now im desperately waiting for blizzard to reveal who the gay characters in Overwatch are because if any of these men are gay theyre going to be the only male player characters who are canonically gay or bisexual (and not just player choice) that i know of who havent just been “confirmed gay” on twitter. and even the characters that do fall into the latter category add up to a grand total of two (and i hate including Axton from Borderlands 2 because i will never forget that his one off line flirting with guys was originally a fucking programming glitch gearbox chose not to fix. the other guy in question is Jacob Frye from Assassins Creed if anyone is curious)

im sick and tired of this like its exhausting just not existing to anyone. its not like the situation in film or television or any other media is that much fucking better right now, but at least i can name movies and tv shows that have gay men in them. its so unendingly depressing being a gay man and trying to enjoy video games because unless im willing to build them for myself they just dont fucking exist. 

p-dots  asked:

I was wondering if you knew anything about the situation with Billy the Asian Elephant at the LA Zoo? I just received an email from the Zoo that a city council motion was filed to remove Billy from the zoo, and they're still trying to fight to keep him. A lot of people claim he appears stressed which is why there's been a big fight to get him moved. I don't really know a lot about elephants so I don't really know what side is best to take or what sources to take seriously (other than the Zoo).

I’ve been following the story of Billy pretty closely. I’m glad you asked - it’s the sort of thing I think is really important to talk about, because people need to understand what’s going on behind the nicely framed stories about animal activism you hear in the media, but I’m never sure how much of that sort of animal industry politics followers are interested in reading. 

The reason this specific instance is so important is because it’s a hell of a lot more complicated than ‘sanctuary vs zoo, which is better for the animals’. The decision to go after Billy - and only Billy, and only right now - looks to me like a really strategic political decision from the animal rights movement, and it falls in line with what I’ve been researching the history, evolution, and MO of the animal rights movement. As I’ve been learning more and more about how animal rights organizations and their partnered sanctuaries conquer and divide to achieve the change they want to see, a very specific pattern of action has started cropping up and this situation exemplifies how they’ve learned to use legislation, the legal system, and the good intentions of the general public to remove animals from zoos. This explanation is going to seem a little bit like jumping at shadows, but this method of petitioning cities to seize zoo animals as assets - and the really conveniently timed fallout that would result from their success - is textbook animal rights organization planning. 

So here’s what you need to know - if Billy is sent to a sanctuary, the LA Zoo would lose their AZA accreditation. They’d likely then be subject to the new wild animal performance law that’s got major support in LA right now, because only AZA institutions would likely have an automatic exemption. The combination of loss of accreditation, potential inability to do public education and outreach, and the ability of the AR groups to spin the situation as ‘AZA kicked them out for being abusive to their elephants’ would massively damage the viability of the zoo as an institution for the foreseeable future… at which point AR groups could easily petition the city to seize more animals from the collection and send them off to sanctuaries, because it’s now “well known” what a horrible institution the LA Zoo is. That would normalize the idea that animal rights organizations and city officials with no professional animal experience know more about animal welfare than the best zoological institutions in the country, and would set a scary precedent regarding what sorts of institutions the public will accept the animal rights organizations condemning and removing animals from. With that sort of potential fallout - and all of the pieces of the puzzle having been successful, individually, within the last decade or so in regards to other animal rights campaigns - this really is not about a single elephant at all. 


AZA has this one really important rule in their accreditation standards, and it boils down to: any zoo they accredit must be considered the experts and have final say over the care of their animals. If anyone external to a AZA accredited zoo overrules that zoo’s choice of care for their animals in any way, that zoo loses their AZA accreditation because they are no longer viewed as having ultimate control over the welfare of their charges. This is really important when it comes to elephants, as the Toronto Zoo lost their AZA accreditation over exactly this situation: animal rights activists caught wind of TZ’s plan to transfer their elephants to a facility in Florida where they’d live in a bigger herd, and petitioned the city council to send the elephants a the Performing Animals Welfare Sanctuary (the same one they want Billy to go to, which has a known history of uncontrolled tuberculosis infections on the property to this day). The Toronto Zoo is a municipal zoo - which means its animals were city property - and the city council chose to claim the elephants as assets, ignore the evidence of animals with active TB already living at the chosen facility, and then overruled the Toronto Zoo staff’s due diligence about what choice would provide the best welfare for their elephants and sent them away to PAWS. Having been overruled by the city council and having lost control of animals in their collection, the Toronto Zoo lost their AZA accreditation. (They later reapplied and were re-accredited). 

So, if the animal rights activists can convince the city council to claim Billy as an asset and remove him to PAWS, it would really damage the LA Zoo as an institution. Their credibility in the eyes of the public would be destroyed, they’d lose exemptions from federal legislation due to losing their AZA status; they’d be forced to pull out of multiple major SSPs (because only AZA institutions are allowed to house animals in the Green level programs, of which LA zoo has number); they’d likely lose grant funding. What’s more, the zoo would then be subject to the recent law banning the use of any exotic animal in “entertainment”in LA, because if has the same structure as similar legislation we’ve seen in other states, only AZA facilities get an exemption. If true, that would mean the zoo would no longer be able to do education and outreach programs with their animals (and this law was backed by PAWS, the organization that runs sanctuary they’re trying to send Billy to). 

There’s a very specific reason that this whole campaign centers on Billy, not all three elephants, which is part of what makes it so clear this is a campaign with an end goal of damaging the LA Zoo’s AZA accreditation. Billy’s two elderly companions, Jewel and Tina, would be far better candidates to be sent to a sanctuary if welfare is really the concern driving the advocacy. They’re rescues from a private owner who were massively underweight and had chronic medical conditions, and it’s not as important for them to stay within AZA’s management as other elephants because they’re too old to contribute to the Asian Elephant SSP. The LA zoo has previously been willing to send older elephants to the PAWS sanctuary without needing intervention from the city council (that story is discussed below), so why is this newer campaign ignoring the elderly females and bypassing the zoo entirely by going to the city council when their welfare would likely be more improved by that sort of move? Jewel and Tina don’t belong to the LA Zoo - they’re officially part of the San Diego Zoo collection and on loan to LA - which means the city council can’t claim them as assets and forcibly remove them. The only elephant at the LA zoo that the LA city council has the ability to control is Billy, and so it’s pretty clear this is about getting the city council to overrule the zoo’s choices in caring for their collection and not about which elephants would benefit most from leaving the zoo environment. 

This is an attempt by the animal rights industry to undermine the LA Zoo as an organization - that much is clear. Billy is just a convenient figurehead and an animal that the public will empathize with while being completely unaware of the the ulterior motives behind the advocacy effort. It comes at a delicate time, too, as the LA Zoo is currently in the process of developing a new master plan for the future of the facility. That’s a future that would be massively impacted by a loss of accreditation and all the potential fallout that would go along with it. 


So that’s the context to the Billy situation, and why people are fighting so hard on both sides of the issue. But what the public really cares about here isn’t the politics, it’s the animal welfare, so here’s a look at history and the welfare of the elephant at the center of all this furor. 

Billy at the LA Zoo. (Photo Credit: San Diego Blogs)

Billy is one of three elephants at the LA Zoo - he’s the youngest, at 32, and the only male. Billy is kept separated from his two elderly female companions, Jewel and Tina, because he’s young enough to still want to reproduce and would injure the elderly ladies if he tried to mount them. However, while the elephants are always separated by a barrier, the exhibit was designed with heavy-duty wire fences that meant the elephants could always be able to see, hear, and touch each other through it. The LA Zoo Asian elephant exhibit is one of the biggest elephant habitats in the United States at 6.5 acres (with almost four acres of yard space), and was opened in 2010 - the construction of a state-of-the-art habitat was part of the resolution from the first time animal rights activists demanded the elephants move to a PAWS sanctuary. 

In 2006, an elderly Asian elephant named Gita died at the LA Zoo. It’s not clear what led to her ending up in position she did, but she was found laying on her back legs with her front legs stretched in front of her. Nothing they did could entice her to stand back up, and she eventually died as her body weight crushed her own tissue and the toxins released during that process overloaded her kidneys. (While this sounds brutal, it’s worth keeping in mind that this is likely how many elderly large animals die if they lay down for the last time in a position that puts their weight on their own body). Animal rights activists had already been agitating for the LA Zoo’s elephants to be sent to a sanctuary, and they used Gita’s death as momentum to push for Billy and the other female housed there at the time, an african elephat named Ruby, to be transported to a sanctuary where it was claimed her welfare would be much higher than at the zoo. The LA Zoo eventually caved to public pressure and chose to send Ruby to PAWS (keeping their AZA accreditation by doing so voluntarily) where she was immediately housed with other animals without a proper quarantine period, exposed to animals who were TB positive and were not diagnosed until after death, and eventually died herself in 2011 from an unknown disease that looked suspiciously like TB (PAWS declined to send out samples for testing, despite what appeared to be physical symptoms observed during the necropsy). 

Gita at the LA zoo in 1999 in the old exhibit. ( Photo Credit: Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

Billy remained at the LA Zoo after Ruby left, and the organization undertook a 42-million-dollar elephant exhibit renovation with the intention of bringing in another breeding male and a number of females as part of the Asian Elephant SSP. In 2007, local activists sued to halt construction of the exhibit with the goal of removing elephants from the LA zoo permanently and forcing Billy into a sanctuary - after a case that was drawn out for a number of years and repeatedly stalled exhibit construction, the judge assigned instead that the LA Zoo was allowed to continue exhibiting elephants but was required to exercise them frequently, make regular exhibit improvements such as tilling the soil, and banned the use of tools such as bullhooks and guides at the facility. When the new elephant exhibit opened in 2010, the LA zoo decided to put breeding plans for Billy on hold in order to house a pair of bonded female Asian elephants - Jewel and Tina - who had recently been removed from a private owner who had neglected their medical care. 

The three elephants share access to the large, heated elephant barn and have 24/7 access to five unique outdoor yards. Each yard has a substrate of soft sand that is tilled regularly to keep it from becoming compacted and hard - the shifting motion of the sand helps keeps the elephants in shape as they walk over it - and each yard has unique features like puzzle feeders, bathing pools and waterfalls. 

Browse and treats are placed at unique locations around all the yards each day, encouraging the elephants to explore their environment anew each morning. In addition, a comprehensive environmental enrichment program makes sure the elephants always have novel objects and stimuli to interact with and a daily training session (which the public is able to watch as a demonstration most days a week) keeps them mentally engaged by practicing foot care, grooming, practice for any veterinary behaviors that might be needed, as well as strength- and balance-focused exercises.

The AZA accreditation standards - which cover general animal policy in 34 pages, and use another 12 to cover animal interactions with the public or use in education programs - have dedicated 32 pages specifically to the regulations regarding elephant husbandry, training, nutrition, body condition, enrichment, and welfare assessments. As a large AZA-accredited zoo that frequently falls under the celebrity-studded, critical eye of the local populace, it’s inconceivable that Billy’s care (and that of Tina and Jewel) is not in accordance with these highly detailed requirements. 

Photos of the new LA Zoo elephant exhibit. (Photo credits: The Portico Group).

The LA Zoo’s elephant exhibit, finished in 2010, was designed by The Portico Group, a design firm founded in Seattle, WA in 1990. The Portico Group’s exhibit designs consistently awards every year within the industry for their incorporation of the newest animal welfare science and management technologies as well as educational and interpretive options. Their design for the LA Zoo is on par with the quality of the rest of their designs, and features a similar amount of yard space for the elephants as the design they created for the widely-praised Cheyenne Mountain Zoo’s Africa expansion that opened in 2013. 

Billy in his habitat at the LA Zoo. (Photo Credit: AP Photo/Richard Vogel)


One of the biggest reasons people express a concern for Billy is a head-bobbing behavior he’s been known to perform his entire tenure at the LA Zoo. The public is aware that repetitive behaviors (called stereotypies) can be signs of low quality welfare, and often worry that means that Billy isn’t being well taken care of at the zoo. However, one thing that isn’t commonly known about sterotypical behaviors is that once developed, they rarely go away once the animal is in a better welfare situation - which leads guests to often misunderstand an animal’s behavior as it relates to their current care. 

The LA Zoo has studied Billy’s head bobbing behavior over the years, and concluded that it appears to be an anticipatory behavior rather than one brought on by stress, as it mainly occurs when the elephant is awaiting the arrival of food, expecting a keeper interaction, or getting ready for movement into another area of his habitat. They also found that Billy had been noted to be displaying the head bobbing behavior when he came to the zoo at age 4 and that it was not something not something he developed during his life at the facility. 

Just because the behavior doesn’t mean that Billy has low welfare in his situation at the LA Zoo doesn’t mean the staff just want to leave him to bob and sway: to help decrease the amount of head-bobbing Billy does and engage him in a range of other behaviors, the keeper staff change their husbandry routine slightly each day and provide enrichment at different times in order to keep him investigating his environment instead of standing and waiting for regular occurrences. 


At the end of the day, Billy’s welfare does not appear to be the impetus pushing this current furor around “rescuing him” - he’s a convenient figurehead for what appears to be a well-coordinated attempt to undercut the LA Zoo’s credibility and accreditation status. 

But even though the actual welfare of the elephant is irrelevant to the organizations pushing this agenda, the general public is now very invested in understanding Billy’s welfare in regards to the outcome of this situation. 

The sanctuary animal rights activists are recommending Billy be sent to has multiple issues with basic elephant husbandry and medical treatment. PAWS was unable to evacuate their elephants in when threatened by a massive wildfire in 2015, due to their policy against doing even the most basic husbandry training with their animals that would have allowed them to be walked into a trailer or crated for transport. Instead, the animals were sheltered on site as the fire came within a few miles of the facility, putting them through massive amounts of stress and resulting in probable smoke inhalation. PAWS frequently take in animals that are reported as healthy upon transport, only to report having to euthanize them within a few years due to crippling chronic conditions. Most concerning is that PAWS appears to be plagued by frequent tuberculosis outbreaks among their elephants, potentially with multiple strains of the disease, despite their stated adherence to biosafety protocols -and that they have had at least one animal die while sick with active, contagious TB infections that were only discovered post-mortem. 

Billy is currently housed in a modern elephant habitat that was created in accordance with best practices for elephant management by outstanding architects - a remodel that was done specifically in response to the original welfare concerns about LA Zoo’s elephants in the late 2000′s. He has access to state-of-the-art veterinary medicine and is cared for by a dedicated team keepers who practice medical treatment behaviors, like foot care, with him daily to ensure that he can quickly receive treatment in a stress-free setting if it becomes necessary in the future. LA Zoo’s elephant keepers work hard to keep Billy active, mentally stimulated, and make sure he has plenty of positive social interactions with both the human and elephant members of his herd. 

If the goal of the general public is Billy’s welfare, he is far better off in a habitat designed for him to inhabit with the staff he has known for a better part of two decades than being sent across the country to a facility with massive red flags in their elephant management program just to fulfill a political movement’s agenda of damaging the facility that holds him. 


Citations under the cut. 

Keep reading

Art School Stereotypes I’ve observed*

Animation

  • N e r d s
  • Unhealthily obsessed with video games, anime, Disney, or some sick combination of the three
  • One of the most sleep-deprived majors, but also surprisingly chipper (there are exceptions)
  • Instantly recognizable by their triforce t-shirts or Pokemon Go snapbacks
  • In spite of everything, they have the highest population of straight-edge asexuals
  • If you weren’t straight edge and celibate before, then prepare to be, because you’re about to disown all bodily urges and dedicate your life to drawing cartoon animals

Illustration

  • Like Animation majors, but cooler and much better taste in fashion. A little less tech-savvy, though
  • Comic book nerds

Painting & Drawing

  • A friend of mine once said, “People who love animation go into animation. Then they realize it’s a ton of work and switch to illustration. Then they realize THAT’S a ton of work and switch into Painting & Drawing.”
  • Highest percentage of colorful hair and weird tattoos/piercings
  • grunge
  • Listen to music you’ve never heard of
  • Smoke a LOT, asthmatics beware

Ceramics

  • Kinda stereotypical stoners or high level artsy kids, but not that pretentious 
  • Somehow even more conceptual and indie than P&D
  • Behind the ceramics building, there’s a sculpture garden of all the sculptures of students past. Every night, the campus closes at 4AM. They say it’s for security, but I say it’s because the sculptures all come to life at that point. I mean, think about it. The whole “spooky midnight hour” is so cliche, I don’t know anyone who DOESN’T stay up till midnight at least once a week. But 4AM? That’s the true witching hour. The hour that belongs only to the living sculptures (and architecture majors I guess)

Glass

  • Frankly, the least hygienic major
  • All the males and most of the females have a rank odor after being sweatily hunched over the steaming hot forges for too long
  • Might be stoners, but the chill, easy-to-hang-out-with stoners
  • Probably the most like a real family. I always walk by the Glass Studio at night and feel the breeze of warm air from their fire, catch a riff of tasteful classic rock, and hear the echoes of genuine laughter from within. It must be nice to have a home.

Jewelry

  • I dunno, I’ve never met one. They put on some sick gallery shows, though.

Graphic Design

  • In spite of Graphic Design as an art not being super emotional or indie compared to, say, Painting, the GD majors are probably some of the most tortured souls I’ve met
  • I used to be best friends/date a GD major and watched before my eyes as she was crushed by the world around her from Freshman to Junior year. Honestly I’m not sure if she still goes here. We don’t talk anymore, it’s too painful. I miss her, or rather, I miss the person she used to be. The person she used to be before Graphic Design.
  • I’m now roommates with a poor little GD Freshman, and I worry about her every day. Not as a lover like with the last one, but as a parent. What will happen to her? How long will she last? Cheyenne, if you’re reading this, run away while you still can.
  • Gets excited about fonts and kerning.
  • I don’t really know what kerning is.

Photography

  • Outdoorsy and nature loving hippies
  • The chillest major, I envy them
  • Photography IS hard work, don’t get me wrong, but come ON! You travel to a beautiful mountain spring, snap a few pictures, and call it a day
  • Never need to pull all-nighters
  • Seriously, I deeply respect Photography as an art and all BUT

Film

  • Some of them are also outdoorsy and nature loving hippies, the rest are hipSTERS
  • “I don’t watch ‘movies.’ I watch Films.
  • Apparently they have something of a drug problem, i.e., half the class comes in stoned
  • My friend Chris said one of the film teachers plays Porno he made in class, I’m not sure if he was messing with me or not

Architecture

  • Oh boy, Architecture
  • The coldest hearts of any major
  • The only nice Architecture majors are the first years. After that last final, something inside of them breaks. At that point they either crawl to a different major in submission, or become as sharp, straight, and lifeless as the buildings which they spend so much time designing
  • They literally do not sleep
  • Seriously, I was pulling an all-nighter last week (since the Architecture place is the only place open 24/7) and I swear to god there was an entire CLASSFULL of the Architects up and jamming from 10pm to 7am. I tried to sleep, but the Architecture majors just wouldn’t quit. Also, it was so cold there. So cold. Cold from the hearts of fifth-year Architects. I’m bringing my winter backpacking sleeping bag next time.

Industrial Design

  • Mostly foreign exchange students, especially Chinese, Indian, and Korean
  • I don’t speak Chinese, Indian, OR Korean so I can’t say much else
  • Vaguely like Architecture majors, only they appear to have a normal spectrum of human emotions 

Interactive Design

  • What is Interactive Design? Honestly I don’t really know. Like making Apps or some shmuck.
  • Tech
  • Graphic Designers who love themselves

Fashion

  • Mostly female
  • Obviously they’re very very VERY nicely dressed
  • Calm, confident, but also have fun sides

Textiles

  • Most of the textiles students I’ve met are just stop-motion loving Animators
  • I think the ones that aren’t are probably like grandmas that love knitting or something

Furniture

  • Honestly I didn’t know this was a major until like last semester
  • The only furniture major I’ve met was this Norwegian dude who looked like a greek god 
  • We were once assigned to do a group project together but then he blew me off to go surfing so I had to do it myself. Seriously? Surfing???? Like I’d be mad but that’s a cool reason to blow someone off. Hell, I’d blow people off surfing if I had the easy life of a non-animation-major

Writing

  • “We have a writing program?”
  • They’re cool though
  • Get really excited about books. I’ve read only about three or four books so I kind of just smile and nod while they talk
  • Seem genuinely interested in other people’s stories

Community Art

  • I’m not entirely sure what this is
  • Passionate about social justice and teamwork

Disclaimer: No offense to any of them (except architecture majors)

*At California College of the Arts from my relativley limited perspective as an animation major who frankly has only had minimal interactions with the others

some crystals for beginners ✨

Originally posted by jupiter-fox

so, first of all, crystals will vary for individuals. one person may say that their number one is celestite etc while others will say something else. this is ok! they each have their own properties, which will probably tailor to their own craft needs! 

In no particular order:

CLEAR QUARTZ (or any type)

clear quartz is very versatile, it can be used/programmed for any purpose!! i feel like clear quartz works so well with us is because clear quartz and our own bodies have silica! (though ours are liquid silica crystals). clear quartz is known as a “master healer” and will amplify energy, as well as the effect of other crystals. BASICALLY, IF YOU’RE JUST STARTING YOUR COLLECTION GET SOME CLEAR QUARTZ!!

ROSE QUARTZ

rose quartz is the universal stone of love, calmness, gentleness, and compassion. generally, this is just a great stone to be around!

AMETHYST

yep. another quartz. are we noticing a trend here?!?! i looooove amethyst. i feel like it is such a protective stone, and, is great for purification! amethyst is also great to develop psychic skills.

SELENITE 

maybe i’m just being biased because selenite is my favourite stone… but i honestly don’t know what i’d do without it! selenite has great mental clarity and psychic qualities, but the main one that amazes me is the fact selenite charges other crystals! i usually charge my other crystals on a selenite slab and logs. it also has strong ties to the moon!

CITRINE

this crystal can be used to detoxify negative energies and encourage a more positive state of mind. it is also great for bringing


THINGS I WISH I KNEW FROM THE START

  • selenite is really easy to break.. maybe it isnt a ‘beginner’ crystal for clumsy witches (like me)
  • some crystals will be damaged in water
  • some crystals fade in sunlight
  • cleansing is important!! i admit it doesnt have to be done all the time, but it should be done at least once!
  • opalite is just… pretty glass. and it usually gets marketed as moonstone!
  • most commercially available citrine on the market is heated amethyst, though it’s still good to use as citrine!
Yuri on Ice interview translation - CREA 2017/03 (p32-33)

This is the full interview with Mitsurou Kubo published on CREA. I actually wanted to translate all the YOI interviews together but some translations going around urged me to post this one before the others, as I wouldn’t be able to finish everything tonight.

It’s not really an interview, it’s more like a partial interview and a short commentary of each episode.

The other 4 short interviews are with Kenji Miyamoto (choreographer), Eiji Abiko & Junpei Tatenaka (figure skating animators), Yuuko Sagiri (original costume designer), Keisuke Tominaga (music producer). I will try to post them tomorrow night if I can finish them.

***If you wish to share this translation please do it by reblogging or posting a link to it***

***Re-translating into other languages is ok but please mention that this post is the source***


The reality as expressed by 5 people who created “Yuri on Ice”

Reality #1: Story x Mitsurou Kubo

“The reality of emotions” is what Kubo-san gave most importance to when she created the manga storyboard for this series. “Simply listing up the contents of the skaters’ programs and their score and connecting them together is not going to create something emotional. In my storyboard I tried to convey the feelings of all athletes, not just Yuuri, with their performances, to express them carefully, so that other skaters who watch them will in turn be influenced by them like in a chain reaction.”
An important tool to express those feelings are the monologues that can be heard during the programs, blended in harmony with the performance.
“Watching the footage of the choreographies by Kenji Miyamoto-sensei I realized that, even though he simply created them based on the songs, in many cases they perfectly match the athlete’s feelings too. I was so moved and thought that Kenji-sensei is an amazing person.”
As the series is pursuing reality, it does not contain any unrealistic techniques.
“If we had included something over-the-top people would have just said ‘that’s unreal’, so I thought that it was better to just go a little ahead of reality, and consulted with many people to decide the difficulty of the techniques to use. However, shortly thereafter real life skaters actually surpassed that level, which really surprised me. We did decide the level knowing that it would be surpassed one day, but we didn’t think it would happen so soon!”
The writer Mitsurou Kubo also needed a lot of courage to portray Yuuri determined to win for love.
“On the ice rink you can express anything, and that’s why, even if I had never thought about what true love is or represented it before, I decided to try my hand at openly depicting love as fiction. As a result, I myself was encouraged by the story I wrote and felt that I could make a fresh start after that.”

“I ended up being encouraged by the story about love that I openly portrayed as fiction.”

Highlights of every episode by Mitsurou Kubo

#1 Nan no Piroshiki!! Namida no Grand Prix Final
“I want you to watch the best figure skating animation”
Before the series was broadcasted I was worried, because normally original anime not based on a previous work and airing late at night take a long time to catch the viewers’ attention. However, my fear was swept away by the extraordinary skating scenes of the first episode, and the show gained a good reputation right away. Stunning images can provide the best promotion.

#2 Futari no Yuri!? Yutopia no Ran
“Figure skaters feeling more familiar”
This part is set during the off-season in Yuuri’s hometown. If we had showed special people battling each other in a faraway place from the very start the viewers would never have felt close to them, therefore I decided to start the story with the Russians, Victor and Yurio, spending time in the onsen of the castle town Hasetsu, eating katsudon and spreading news via the SNS, so that they would feel more familiar to the audience.

#3 Boku ga Eros de Eros ga Boku de!? Taiketsu! Onsen on ICE
“You can feel the growth of Yuuri and Yurio”
Once the Grand Prix series starts no one can afford to lose anymore, so I created this provisional match between Yuuri and Yurio to emphasize their relationship as rivals but also as comrades. I also wanted to show that a competitive program is progressively brushed up during the season based on each athlete’s pace. Originally I also thought of showing Yurio’s mother rushing to the scene.

#4 Jibun wo Suki ni Natte… Kansei!! Free Program
“Yuuri and Victor gradually become closer”
In the process of completing the free skating program Yuuri and Victor become closer to each other, both as coach and student and as equals. Yuuri’s gesture of poking the top of Victor’s head has no logical meaning. I think it symbolizes how Yuuri, acting on an impulse, breaks his own shell and steps into the territory of the person that previously was only considered a living legend.

#5 Kao Makka!! Shosen Da yo! Chuu-shikoku-kyuushuu Senshuken Taikai
“Check out the relationship between seniors and juniors”
Minami-kun, a skater that looks up to Yuuri, appears in this episode. I really like the scene where Yuuri, finally becoming aware that he is going to lead the current generation of Japanese skaters, silently hits Minami-kun’s back. As in the scene where he pokes Victor’s head, once again Yuuri uses a physical action, instead of logic or words, to try to communicate something. When it’s animated it looks really awesome.

#6 Kaimaku Grand Prix Series Yacchaina!! Chuugoku Taikai SP
“Check out Chris’ sexiness”
The tournament starts and many fascinating athletes make their appearances, but this episode is also an occasion to fully enjoy the charm of Chris’ ass. After watching Kenji-sensei’s choreography I decided to draw a beautiful ass in my storyboard, then its charm was further emphasized in the animation, and finally thanks to the voice actor’s absolutely sexy voice we could obtain the best ass animation ever.

#7 Kaimaku Grand Prix Series Yacchaina!! Chuugoku Taikai FS
“An FSP where Yuuri and Victor overcome their fears”
Yuuri and Victor were both anxious before the FS, and I feel that the strongly emotional scenes following that were represented in a very effective way. Regarding the last scene, I started receiving lots of questions from overseas, asking “Did Yuuri and Victor hug? Or was it a kiss?” and that’s when I realized how much the anime’s popularity had spread worldwide.

#8 Yuuri VS Yuri Osoroshia!! Russia Taikai SP
“JJ’s striking appearance is a must see”
This episode is where Jean-Jacques Leroy, aka JJ, one of the most likely candidates to win the gold medal, appears. What is scary about JJ is that he has the ability to paint any story in JJ color, overshadowing even the protagonist. Mamoru Miyano-san, the one who played his role, managed to take JJ to the next level with his natural personality and made him all the more convincing.

#9 Yuuri VS Yuri Osoroshia!! Russia Taikai FS
“When the absence of an important person makes you grow”
This episode is where Yuuri grows after fighting without Victor next to him. When we went location hunting at the Fukuoka airport there was a glassed-in corridor close to the arrival lobby, and as the director saw it she excitedly said “Yuuri and Victor are going to run side by side separated by the glass!”. I was like “they definitely are!”, and we started taking heaps of pictures. The airport is currently being remodeled and it’s not possible to recreate the scene.

#10 Chou Ganbaranba! Grand Prix Final Chokuzen Special
“Ordinary life episode the night before the last fight”
As the last part depicting ordinary life before the Grand Prix Final, I wanted to create a relaxing episode without skating scenes while at the same time introducing the athletes, but in the end so many things happened in it that no one could relax and I was told that even animating it was a pain. The ring Yuuri gave Victor also carries the meaning of a symbol that the two of them are like soul mates.

#11 Chou Chou Ganbaranba!! Grand Prix Final SP
“The speed leading to the last episode is impressive to watch”
The OP footage, that was gradually changed from episode 1 by adding colors, is finally complete. I was happy that we could welcome as voice actors Ken Gamada-san, who actually works as an MC in tournaments and ice shows, and Nobunari Oda-san as himself doing the commentary. With the pace of the story speeding up toward the finale, this episode was just chaos.

#12 Chou Chou Chou Ganbaranba!!! Grand Prix Final FS
“A final episode where you can catch a glimpse of everyone’s future”
Including Stéphane Lambiel-san’s debut as an anime seiyuu, which is something no one could have expected, the chaotic mixup of anime and reality reaches a climax in this episode. Beside the sense of fulfillment for the victory, I think that the contents also let you catch a glimpse of each character’s future. I was about to faint looking at the beauty of Victor’s tears.


Final note (this is just my opinion, it’s not part of the translation): There is a translation going around where the line about soul mates is translated as “proof”, but actually the word 証 (akashi) can have many different meanings, among which symbol/mark/token/proof/sign etc. In this case, I personally do not think it means “proof” (also to be honest when it’s “proof” usually they write it as 証拠 shouko). It’s more like symbol/token, as in “it’s meant to symbolize Yuuri and Victor’s deep bond that goes beyond a normal relationship”. Although the difference is only subtle, I still think it’s not the same. Also please understand that the Japanese word “soul mate” does not have the meaning that is used in fanfiction… I believe it’s actually the same in English too, but in normal conversation it means “two people that have a strong spiritual/emotional bond (that makes them suited for each other, be it either as friends or lovers)”, not “two people who were destined to be together from their previous life”. That is something you are free to imagine or fantasize about, however please do not twist the creators’ words just to fit people’s headcanons…

P.S.: And please do not misunderstand me. I love Victuuri, but I prefer to draw a line between canon and fanon, and I don’t really like it when words by the creators are “adapted” to accomodate people’s shipping ideas. I think what she says is deep enough even without mistranslating it anyway…

I Think I Wanna Marry You...

Pairing: Dean X Reader.

Warnings: none.

S/P/N- Sister’s Preferred Name.

Summary: The reader, distraught over not having a date to her sister’s wedding, considers asking one of the Winchesters to pretend to accompany her; will Dean manage to save the day and play pretend for two weeks, or will his feelings get the best of him?

A/N: I’m a sucker for these “fake relationship” stories ;))



                                                   ~*~*~*~

Y/N pulls the phone from her ear, her frustration drawn out in the creases in her brow.


“Well?” Dean asks, sat opposite her at the library table. Before him lies an open lore book, on a page about Nordic gods and how to kill them, and his cup of coffee sits dangerously close to the irreplaceable relic. With Sam out doing some shopping, it’s just the two of them at home, trying to dig up some info that might be useful for future use.


Pinching her brow, the young girl shakes her head, waving a dismissive hand.  “Nothing. It’s fine.”


“Ya’ sure?”


“Yes.” She says, trying to sound convincing, but its of no use, because the elder Winchester has known her long enough to see past her facades.


Living together for nearly five years now, calling her his best-friend even feels like an understatement. They got to know each other a while back through a hunt involving a Tulpa in California; Y/N’s kill, but the boy’s happened to jump in on it and help out. Surprise surprise: a friendship sparked,  and ever since then, the relationship has flourished greatly.


To Dean, Y/N is family, just like Cas or Charlie or any of the other members of their little rehabilitation program they’ve picked up over the years. And with that, he knows—well enough—that despite her efforts to dismiss it, something is nudging at her mind.


“Obviously not. You seem like you’re about to explode. What is it?” He shuts the book and leans forward. Y/N still looks exasperated; still tries to act like she isn’t, and fails terribly. When she finally lifts her gaze, her expression is that of defeat.


“It’s my sister.” She says mournfully. “She’s calling me about her wedding coming up this month, and wants to know if I’ve been signed up to the family news letter that allows me to see all the updates on things like which floral arrangement we’re going to have. Surprise surprise—I’m not.”


“Damn.” Dean says plainly, still not seeing the reason behind her chagrin. Y/N rolls her eyes at him, trying to look annoyed, but the smile that she suppresses says otherwise.


A sardonic laugh escapes her. “Yeah, damn indeed.”  She rises from her seat, downing her coffee. Dean glances at his, then stretches it across to her. She finishes it in a single glug.


“So….what now?” He leans back in the chair. “You don’t know the floral arrangements? Doesn’t sound so bad.”


“I don’t know anything about this wedding, Dean. I don’t know where it’s gonna be, I don’t know who’s gonna be there, and—until I few seconds ago—I didn’t know I’m going to have to be in Boston next week. S/P/N mentioned it in the newsletter but….” Her voice drifts off and she folds her lips into a straight-line, shrugging.


“What’s in Boston?”


“The wedding, apparently. Who even gets married in Boston? Yuck.” Y/N scowls.


“Your sister, apparently.” He almost rolls his eyes. “Right, so…go to Boston. Show up for the rehearsal, see your family, have fun, and then get back here once everything’s done.”


Dean explains it like it’s so easy.  To him, it is.  Wedding prepping can’t take more than three weeks, can it….? He wouldn’t know. He’s never had the chance to even be part of a wedding, but he assumes that that’s an appropriate estimate.


But, from the way Y/N bites her lip and averts her gaze to the floor, a look teetering between guilt and embarrassment on her face, maybe he’s wrong.


“Yeaahhh….” She draws out, skeptically. “Uhm…about that. It’s not as easy as it sounds…”


“Uhm…?” He quirks an inquisitive brow.


“I…sorta…told them that I have a date to the wedding and,…” Y/N gestures in the air, but doesn’t finish her sentence.


Dean watches her with a knitted brow, waiting for an explanation that doesn’t come, until realizations strikes. His eyes widen and his mouth forms a little “o”.


“Ohhh.”


“Yeah…” Her cheeks are dusted with a feint blush and she looks away.


Dean doesn’t want to say it, but he can’t help but think how cute it is—really cute. The only thing that can compete, he thinks, is the way her eyes disappear into her cheeks when she smiles.


As embarrassing as it is, he has almost an entire list like that about Y/N; things he thinks are adorable about her, things like her laugh, to  he way she’s so awkward around big crowds,  or how she has an undeniable obsession with space. Little things. Cute things. It goes on and on, infinite and growing each day, the more and more he gets to know her…but he’ll never admit that.


Because he can’t.


Because Y/N is family, and she’s just a friend.


“Well…is it like a must to bring one along? You could always just tell your family that you guys…broke up? Maybe he cheated. Maybe the love fizzled out.” Dean offers, shrugging.


Y/N looks at him with an un-amused expression. “Great thing to mention right before a wedding.”


“God, I don’t know.” Getting up from his seat, he rolls his eyes. He shuts the book and a gust if dust billows from it, then fixes it under his arm.“You’ll figure it out. It’s you.”


“Dean…”


“Yeah?”


Y/N doesn’t meet his gaze. Instead, she looks to the floor, arms crossed over her chest.“Well,…there is something I thought about doing, but—God, I don’t know. What if, like—” She finally looks up.


Dean waits for the bombshell he knows she’s about to drop with a cautious, furrowed brow,


“—I asked Sam?”  She finishes, her expression hopeful; her eyebrows are pulled together and she’s squinting slightly. The elder Winchester feels the wind get knocked out of him at hearing this.


His eyes widen. “Sam?”


“Not to actually be my date!—just to fool my family for the two weeks. Do you think he’ll go along with it?”


“I don’t get it—why don’t you just—“


“I can’t tell them I don’t have a date, because I already told them that I do. Going back on my word now will just make me look ridiculous, Dean. Just…”Y/N sighs and shuts her eyes. Dean can read the desperation in her features. He bites his lip, contemplating Y/N’s offer.


Sam, going on a date with Y/N. The idea is so ludicrous, so unbelievable that it sounds completely silly, like imagining pigs fly or anything of the nature. He can’t bring himself to even picture the two of them together, but…


Still.


He then feels something stir in his gut at the thought, a warmth, a….jealousy? No. Hopefully not. It’s been ages since these feelings have managed to surface. Now is not the time for a return. The elder Winchester quickly suffocates the feeling and averts his attention back onto his friend.


 Before him she stands, imploring y/e/c eyes, a sweet smile stretched across her face and hands clasped together. She looks like a little girl, so young, so desperate. The elder Winchester doesn’t want to say no. Even if he did—with puppy eyes like those—how can you?


“So you have to have a date to this wedding?”


“I do.”


Dean thinks for a moment, raking his eyes over Y/N’s face that speaks mountains of uncertainty.


“You think he’ll say no, huh?”


“I’ll do it.”


“What?” Confusion floods the young girls face as she unclasps her hands. They fall to her side. Dean gulps trying to level his voice to a more confident tone.


“I’ll be your date to your sister’s wedding.” He repeats, hoping he sounds more sure than he feels. His hands go cold, throat tightening.


Y/N’s face speaks volumes of surprise. “You’d…do that?”


Another nod.


“You’ll really do this?” She asks eyes wide. “A whole two weeks in Boston? With my family?”


Dean shrugs. For some wild reason, his heart is pounding in his chest and his palms are sweating, and he tries to stave off all the anxiety that begins to bubble within his gut. “Yeah. Why not?”


“Dean,” Y/N’s voice is stern all of a sudden. You can tell that she’s just as taken aback by the proposal as he is, but is trying not to show it. “If you say yes to this, I don’t want you to half-ass it? This is a real big deal for me, you know?”


“Look, do you want a date to this wedding or not?”


Y/N  then bites her lip, contemplating. The elder Winchester’s eyes never leave her as he watches, waiting for response, until she finally agrees.


“Okay.” She says. A small smile then twitches on her lips, and Dean can see she’s trying to suppress.


“ Okay. Awesome. I’m gonna call S/P/N and see if there’s anything more I need to know yeah?” She asks. He nods.


“Sure.” Dean says. “It’s fine with me.”


“Sure?”


“Mhm.” He knows he is, because the smile that breaks through Y/N’s authoritative face then is something definitely worth the decision. Her cheeks indented with dimples, she smiles, shaking her head, and then walks out to make the call. On the way out, she makes sure she butts her shoulder into his, just for fun. Dean lets out a nervous chuckle.


She’s gone. The empty library is silent, and that’s when his heart starts to thud.


Over and over, like a vicious doldrums. The silence only accentuates the sound of his rapid heartbeat, as the elder Winchester allows in a deep breath. His eyes flutter shut, and the anxiety begins to melt away gradually.


This is gonna be a hell of a wedding.


                                                  ~*~*~*~

Part 2

I’ve been in my feelings for Dean for the past few weeks so bear with me pls. Also, I’m very excited for this story; more chapters to come, hopefully soon.

As always, likes, re blogs and general feedback is greatly appreciated!

I can't watch reality TV shows anymore. I don't know what's changed, but overnight I stopped fucking with them. It's boring and honestly, I can't relate to any of the storylines plus I feel like it gives a bad reflection on my community.

Grown women, 47 years old, still fucking around with waste men and throwing drinks at other women. God forbid I continue to let that nonsense into my frequency. If I’m not leaving the program with something insightful, then I’m not watching it.

EMPOWERMENT

Things that are actually empowering to women and girls:

1. Physicality
becoming physically stronger empowers us. exercising your body not only makes your body stronger and more powerful, but it brings discipline and helps you connect with your body instead of disconnect.
being able to physically be at a location is empowering. feminists should be fighting to make all places accessible to disabled women.
disabled women should also have access to any type of exercises and physical therapy they can do. i would especially like to see more public pools having more physical therapy programs. swimming is a great way to exercise for strength while not putting any gravitational or impact on your body

2. Knowledge

Knowledge is empowering. having knowledge about how our own bodies work is empowering. women and girls who are.knowledgeable are not easily misled. in this vein, learning how to properly debate arguments and think critically about yours and others words and beliefs is empowering. having the ability to trust yourself comes with gaining knowledge.

3. Access to Fulfilling Work.

work that feeds our love and passion is empowering. workplaces with atmospheres where everyone is happy and excited to work with women are empowering. workplaces free from sexual attacks empower women. women stimulating their minds and souls is empowering. women doing the work they find stimulating gives us a sense of purpose.

many women of all different walks of life have a high propensity for art. charging them with female representation in media will empower us all by putting forth the huge diversity that women display as human beings with full experiences and lives and stories to tell.

evidence shows that the least depressed cohort of women are the ones who work and who are financially independent, not the married housewives.

4. Reproductive and Sexual Rights.

women having control over our own.reproduction is empowering. women having orgasms and thinking about our own pleasure during sex is empowering. women accepting their own physical form and refusing to be disrespected by men who find them unacceptable because of their physical form is empowering. women refusing intercourse if it does nothing for their pleasure or they dont want to take the risk is empowering. women not being forced to sell their own bodies is empowering. women having control over OUR OWN BODIES is freedom.

Things that are NOT empowering to girls and women:

1. Femininity

being small, delicate, and on display is not empowering and it never will be. wearing high heels damages our feet and is not empowering. wearing makeup because society does not believe we as women are acceptable without it is not empowering. having long and/or fake nails limits the use of our hands and is not empowering. our collective bodies are not for men to look at and enjoy as they go about their day in comfortable, dignified clothing.

kindness, nurturing, and the desire to help others are good qualities in moderation, and they should be thouhght of as sex-neutral qualities everyone should work on, not just women. women are not the only ones who should be expected to be nurturing and giving.

aspiring for smallness is the opposite of enpowering. women need to eat. women are allowed to grow. our goal should be comfort and health, not emancipation and fragility.

2. Self-objectification

our hands are for doing tasks and our feet are for mobility. our faces are to house our brains and feed us, not a thing for men to find either acceptable or unacceptable to look at. every part of our bodies are for OUR use, not for the use of others. we exist for ourselves. our bodies are not naturally political and they are all acceptable and worthy of humanity, no matter what they look like or what issues they have.

3. Submission

Submissiveness is not empowering. lowering your worth until it is under the worth you give someone elses humanity is self-harm. humiliation and degredation arise out of the degraders sense of superiority over the one submitting to him. being treated as inferior will never empower anyone.

4. Marriage and Traditional Nuclear Family

marriage is a contract of ownership where women take on the last name of men. nuclear families are an extension of male ownership to not only include women but the children they objectify as their legacy of power. men expect women to raise children while they work, but women have goals and dreams too. men expect women to drop these goals and sacrifice only their lives to raise children that men see as their property and investment. men leave the majority of menial housework and micro-cleaning to women. marriage and nuclear families will never be empowering.

5. Outside Control over Reproduction.

up to and including abortion. ALSO involving lack of access to childcare and paid leave. this one explains itself.

6. The Sex Industry.

Mens entitlement over females and our bodies will NEVER be empowering and MUST end.

Now, can people stop using this word for things that ARENT giving women any actual power? Glad we had this talk.

Amy and the Egos...

Mark made sure to let the Egos know that Amy was absolutely off limits. She is free to roam their building (Ego Inc. as they’ve begun to refer to it) because even Mark would never try to tell Amy where she could and couldn’t go, but if they so much as touch a single golden hair on her perfect head, Mark would definitely put them in the ground.

Amy actively avoids Dark. His parasitic gray aura and snide remarks turn her stomach. It bothers her how much he looks like Mark—those same brown eyes that are full of deceit and hatred for her. But she prefers that hatred to the times when he tries to seduce her, using Mark’s own voice and mannerisms against her.

She goes to the Googles whenever she’s having trouble with her computer, and Yellow practically falls over himself at any chance to help her. Amy pretends not to notice the way his synthetic skin blushes deeply whenever she enters the room. The others, however, oblige because it’s in their programming and give Yellow sideways glares when they think Amy isn’t looking.

Dr. Iplier, at first, insists on giving Amy check-ups whenever he catches her in the hallway. Amy obliges because the Doctor is one of the easier Egos to talk to, but after a while, he becomes jealous of how much attention she gets from the others.

Wilford is Amy’s favorite, and while he tries to pretend that he doesn’t care for her company, he can’t resist an audience. He’s always making flippant threats, but Amy knows he’d never hurt her. In fact, there have been times when Dark has gotten Amy cornered, and Wilford Warfstache swoops in, candy-coated charisma practically lighting up the room, to drive Dark away, back to his office.

Bim Trimmer is Amy Nelson fan #1. She’s pretty sure he has a t-shirt with her face on it, not that he would admit it. He shows her his collection of tiny plants that he keeps in his changing room (a modified broom closet, but it’s still something). Amy secretly talks to Will about giving him a better space, and when Warfstache shows Bim his new room, he may or may not have dropped a few hints that it was Amy’s idea.

At first, Amy is scared stiff of the Host, but after a while, her curiosity wins out. She’s seen the videos of him as the Author, but the man that she finds hunched over his desk in the dark is not the Author. The Host is impressed that she isn’t fazed by the bandages, and when he finds out that she’s read his books, he becomes Amy Nelson fan #2. Together, they discuss the Host’s podcasts (which Amy listens to while she’s on her adventures) and his story ideas.

On rare occasions, Amy will spot the King of the Squirrels scampering through the halls with peanut butter all over his face, screaming something about his beautiful, fluffy subjects. She once tried to make a PB&J in the building’s kitchen when the King walked in on her. She forgot how high-pitched Mark’s screams could be…

{If you enjoyed this and have an idea for another imagine or a fic, please send me requests!}

Locked in Love (M)

Word Count: 24k
Member: Jimin x Reader
Genre: Smut, Fluff & Slight angst like it’s barely even there

Getting locked in the mall on Christmas eve isn’t ideal, but getting locked in the mall with your brothers best friend that you haven’t seen in a while? Well, it might have been alright if you didn’t have feelings for him.

↠ Day 5 of the seven days of Christmas collab! Read the other fics here

cr

Keep reading

How to become a good student (again) 3: Yearn for friendship - not worship; not debasement

Hello, fellow ex-good student!

‘tis done! This beast just got longer and longer, so I decided to cut it down a bit for the sake of readability. But let me know if there’s something that was too vague - the nuance might have got lost in the editing process.

Alright, let’s get down to business (to defeat! The Huns!)! So, if you’re an ex-good student, I’m pretty sure that you know this static in your head, right? Whenever you really need to do something but you just can’t get up and do it, so you keep procrastinating even though you hate it and keep scrolling and scrolling or gaming and gaming and feel more and more guilty?

Well, it might not be the most immediate analogy, but for this post I want you to consider that what connects you and your subject of study is essentially a relationship and that this static is (among other things) an indicator of how screwed up your relationship is. Just like with real people, your relationships with subjects can either

  • prosper and bear fruit (me & Creative Writing)
  • become cold and distant (me & French)
  • or, worst of all, turn sour and actively harmful. (me & PE, back in school)

Now, nobody likes to hear that they’re relationship-ing wrong. And it is true that different approaches work for different people. But here are the counter-productive relationships that I’ve personally ended up in and I’m gonna show you how I got into and out of them, so you can try to do the same. Maybe it’ll help you lift that static from your head.

Side-Note: Always remember that, since your subjects are just that (subjects), and not real people, you are the only one who can actually mend these relationships and, conversely, you are the one who screwed them up in the first place (probably with good intentions, though).

So, we’ll take them in this order:

1) Overeager Debasement

2) Undereager Debasement

3) Worship


(Oh, and in case you wanna catch up:

Masterpost 

Part 1

Part 2)


1) Overeager Debasement

What is it?

The desire to do everything, perfectly, at the same time, right now. Not to limit yourself to just one field of study, but to master them all, to reign supreme above knowledge, to keep your mind wide open to new possibilities, similarities and contradictions.
You overvalue your own capacities and undervalue the needs and difficulties of your subject.
(also refer to the first post for this)

How did you get here?

(read picture from right to left)

So. Many. Possible. Reasons.

  • it’s a cage. The idea of doing just one thing for the rest of your life scares you and you feel imprisoned at the thought of it
  • you know that you could be outstanding if you applied yourself
  • you know that you could be even more outstanding if you became accomplished in multiple fields
  • you want to find connections between fields nobody’s ever considered before
  • you feel like you’ve wasted your last few years and need to catch up to others
  • you’re afraid that you’re not good enough
  • you’re afraid of being ignorant
  • you’re arrogant

No matter the reason (I’ve gone through them all), people caught in this state of mind shovel more and more onto their plate.
And then wonder why they can’t swallow it all.

What do you think you’re doing?

A labour of love, most likely. You think you love languages and sciences and athletics and programming and cooking and hanging out with friends and being alone and so you just want to do it all!
You don’t want to limit yourself! You don’t want to lose any time! But there’s just so much and you have so little energy and ugh, if only I wasn’t destined for greatness, then I could relax like other little people, but no, I need to keep pushing! In every! Direction! At the same! Time!

I know your delusion. I’ve been there. You imagine yourself to be that one perfect friend who gets up at 6am, watches the sun rise, does yoga, eats a healthy breakfast, goes for a quick run, comes back home, answers all correspondence, is artistic for a few hours, then scientific for a few hours, then social for a few hours and ends the day with tiny masterpieces in each area, goes out with friends or family to grab a healthy dinner and goes to sleep, happy and balanced :)

Well, you know what, my starry-eyed friend?

What are you actually doing?

You’re the mental equivalent of a social butterfly.
You’re being fucking disrespectful.

You’re always on the run and never able to really commit to anything, because you’ve already scheduled something else afterwards. You’re shallow, deluded, that one friend that always comes in running, screaming “Besties  ~ ♥” and everyone shifts uncomfortably in their seats and smiles a painful smile and humours you, because they know you mean well, but they also know that you know nothing about them. 
You’ve never been there for them ever, but always expect them to be there for you. Whenever they want to talk about themselves, you nod and then proceed to about yourself and your plans and “ohmygosh, this is so nice, we need to meet more often ~ ♥ “. But at least you mean well, so they’ve agreed to keep it simple and on the “The weather is nice today”-level with you. 

But here you are, wondering why you’re not making any progress.
Mysterious.

So what do I do?

Well, you need to go from this:

To this:

How? More on that below.


2) Undereager Debasement

What is it?

This stage is what happens when you notice that your lofty ideals from Overeager Debasement cannot be fulfilled. You turn bitter, hateful, cold. You think you’re a failure, you think you were too soft. Instead of wanting to be friends with everyone, you now want to rule over everyone, fuck what they want.

You’re burnt out. You’re done. You just want to get through these stupid classes and catch a goddamn break, goddamnit.

And you WILL get through. You’re too proud to do anything else. But you don’t really care about any of it.
You just want to make it.

How did you get here?

If you were a good student, you probably heard at some point or another that you were “different” and that your complex and mysterious ways were not understandable and definitely not achievable for your average classmate.

Most people who tell you this mean well. A few want to make fun of you, but most actually do mean it as a compliment. But they don’t know how dangerous it is to hear it again and again, because regardless of whether it’s true or not, you start to believe it.
You start to believe that somehow, you have a higher calling, a higher standard. And you start to long for that day when your high standards will be met - when you will go to that one mysterious class where everyone is just as eager as you are, where the “Oh, captain, my captain!”-teacher will spark a fire in your brain that will never go out and when your ominous “gifts” can finally be put to good use for the prosperous future of mankind.


And you work.

And work.

And the class never comes.

You feel the weight on your shoulders when teachers talk of “high expectations”, you feel it crush you a little bit every time your friends tease you about your genuine fear that you might not get an A, that you might lose it all, that your “gifts” could disappear and you’ll be stranded and useless and you put in the hours, you work your ass off to keep that high standard, all in the hope of having that one miraculous class that never comes.

I realized that that class would never come when I entered university.

University, I’d told myself, would be my Arcadia, my Eden, my academic paradise where all my hard work would be rewarded!
Instead, I only found more drudgery, more incompetent professors, more disinterested students and even more bureacracy. To say that I was “disappointed” would be putting it very lightly.

I became disoriented and disenchanted. I realized that I could get through most classes with half-assed effort, I was hardly ever challenged, I floated along and hated every second of it. I blamed my boring teachers, the imperfect system, the teachers who had given me hope only for me to watch it crash and go up in flames.

What do you think you’re doing?

Being badass, cool and detached, most likely.

You dream of yourself as a master and your subjects as slaves. They bow to your will, they dance to your tune, you command them with the snap of a finger.

“Look, you slave of the system”, you say, lying on a velvet sofa, “Look, at how it hardly takes any effort for me to pass these classes! Look at how I spend my time doing things I actually like and that are actually worth it, unlike these stupidly easy classes taught by stupidly incompetent professors in a stupidly screwed-up system! Look at me, being edgy and drowning in self-hatred because I can physically feel myself gliding off the rails that made me so “special” and becoming one of the average people in the masses, haha. Ha. Ha. Screw academia, but still give me good grades, amirite?”

I know your delusion. I’ve been there. You imagine yourself to be that one perfect friend that never studies for classes, comes for three lectures per semester and still manages to get perfect grades because everything you do in school is, like, so five years ago. That one friend who has read all the classics in their spare time, has conquered and enslaved all the knowledge actually worth knowing, will quote obscure Polish philosophers you’ve never heard of and plays the piano with a perfect pitch. They’re the wisest, most culture-non-conforming people you know - they’ve been up until 5am, wandering the streets and drinking vodka from a bottle while forcefully pentrating the mysteries of the universe all by themselves until they finally fall asleep on a park bench and awake with an epiphany about Klein bottles.
They’re “special”.

What are you actually doing?

Caring more about appearing “special” than actually trying to be “special”, that’s what you’re doing.

But, look, what made you so “special” and “different” in the first place was not a “calling” or “gifts” or the fact that you wrote good grades and were destined for greatness.

Here’s a handy chart I’ll use later - you were lucky enough to fall into the green zone, lucky enough to be born with an innate respect and a love for learning. That’s what made you “special”. That’s what made you succeed. Not pressure, not warped ideals and certainly not the fear of failure.


But somewhere along the way you forgot that and only focussed on the results. You started to believe yourself to be so special that everybody else should cater to you.
The fancy titles, the awe-struck looks, the “You’re so amazing”s and the “The genius of a decade”, the planned Nobel prize speech and the prestige, the dream others had lovingly created for you and you had slowly absorbed and warped as your own? It got to you. Hell, it got to me.
And it became more important than learning itself.
Somewhere along the way, you and I, we became an arrogant and lazy assholes.

You looked down on your easy courses and homework and instead of recognising how lucky you are, doing it in a minute and a half and then putting in the extra work on top to dig deeper and to maybe contribute something of value and fun, you threw it aside with a snide remark as beneath you.
Of course it wasn’t fun. Of course it wasn’t challenging. You never even tried to make it either.

(And don’t get me wrong: I honestly do think that the education system as it is right now needs MAJOR reforms. But right now? It is what it is. And instead of making the best of it and doing what you once loved so much, you succumbed to societal pressures you found yourself unable to fulfill and said “meh”.
You cared so much about the fame and the title that the relationship itself didn’t matter.)

But this isn’t the master-slave relationship you imagine it to be.
It’s a trophy-friendship. Once upon a time, you got on really well with this person and other people loved your friendship. You fell in love with the ideal, with their connections, their money, their prestige, their name on a CV, and you stuck around just for that.
You valiantly ignore the reality of the state of things between you two
and take them out only when absolutely needed, only when things are this close to falling apart and so you keep walking a fine, fine line.
Whenever a deadline approaches, you shower them with attention and love and, gingerly, they open up to you and you see a depth and complexity to them that astounds you and makes you think “Imagine! Imagine how much more I could have seen if only I’d started earlier?”
But the moment the crisis has passed, you toss them aside once again.

Because this is enough to make your name.
You may not remember much about these nights or about the person at all, but the only thing that counts is that it will fulfill your “special” prophecy and make you a legend, right?

Well, always remember this:
(read picture from right to left)

You’re not “special” if you made it to university. You’re not “special” if you’ve made your name. 
It comes down to a simple choice: do you value appearances over integrity or the other way round? Do you dare to look like a fumbling idiot again when you start something new? Is the “appearing like an idiot”-part more important to you than the “learning/creating something new”-part? 
Have a think about it.

3) Worship

“Alright”, you’ll say, “Alright. I get it. So I’ll treat my “friends”/subjects with respect and integrity and I’ll take all the time and concentration I can bestow upon them, just as I would upon real friends. But do you want me to be like, uh - like…

What is it?

“…like one of those anime characters that lives only for their dream and gets up at like 6am, does the thing, talks about the thing, breathes the thing, goes to bed, dreams of the thing and then wakes up at 6am to do the thing?”

(Google: Did you mean Hinata Shouyou?

Yes, yes, I did, google.)

Well, no, I don’t want you to do that. See, that’s the other extreme and unless you’re an anime character, chances are that it won’t work out for you. 

How did you get here?

Personally, I was caught in this trap for a loooooong time. Anime offered me a new way of relating to my passions that neither my family nor my school had ever shown me: unabashed obsession.
I wanted to be perfect. I wanted to be obsessed. I wanted to give myself up to a higher ideal, something above human consciousness, something that would endure. I wanted to, well, get up at 6am, do the thing, talk about the thing, breathe the thing and so on - “the thing” in question being, of course, studying. I made elaborate plans, complicated lists, study-plans that shift on a daily basis and cover all grounds, I wanted to study for two hours before school, wanted to repeat lessons, wanted to give myself up to knowledge, made cool covers for my notebooks, made mock exams for my friends to use, planned to focus on each continent for a month and study it, planned to listen to one new composer each day, planned to go to the museum every week, planned to analyze Sherlock Holmes and think just like him, planned to - you get the idea.

I wanted to be like this:

What do you think you’re doing?

Being but a humble servant to the eternal workings of truth. Knowing thou art unworthy, yet suffering the perfection of study.

I wanted to go from 0 to 100, I wanted knowledge and wisdom to transform and deliver me, I wanted to feel enlightened, I wanted to feel my brain burning, pushing frontiers and breaking through to new horizons, I wanted to elevate myself to touch even the lowest levels of truth.
I wanted to do something noble, something worthwhile, something that could never be critisized and would always be valued, something with eternal meaning that would echo through the ages and I wanted to be even the tiniest cog in the machinery of mind.

What are you actually doing?

Being, quite simply, an idiot.

This is one of my favourite quotes (David Wong):

“There are two ways to dehumanize someone: by dismissing them, and by idolizing them.” 

The same goes for studying. As shown above, studying won’t work out if you do not treat your subjects with respect. Conversely, studying also won’t work if you continue to idolize it as work beyond all work and reproach, as the only true calling, as the realm of the genii and by self-flagellating yourself and repeating “I’m but a humble servant in your kingdom of reason and will never reach where you are, but will spend all my time trying to reach you.” 

Why? Because by saying “I’ll never reach you or be worthy of you”, you’ve already sealed your fate. Some students (no matter how well they actually perform) are stuck thinking that they are stupid and incapable of doing well. Others think that the trick is in the preparation and they undergo complicated rituals of finding exactly the right study spot, exactly the right study drink, exactly the right study time, etc. in the hope of channeling the connection between their godly subject and themselves, but it never turns out quite as glamorous as they’d hoped (once again, speaking from experience).

This is because you cannot force a true friendship if you think yourself unworthy of it. It will always be worship. 

And why are you worshipping?
Because it takes the pressure right off of you
. This always annoyed me about some of my fellow students. They treated becoming a good student as this miraculous and unlikely event that only happens to the #blessed.
I insisted that “no”, it could be done. “Yes”, it was hard work, but ultimately absolutely doable. But now that I’ve been in their shoes? I understand.
Admitting that you could have done it anytime implies failure on your part for not having done it. By saying “Oh no, it is so very complex and divine and a lowly worm like me could never hope to crawl in its shadows”, you shift the focus away from yourself and onto the thing itself. 

But this is a synthetic, manufactured relationship with a partner that does not even exist. It is, at its heart, a kyaa  ~ I hope senpai notices me! (๑♡⌓♡๑) - kind of relationship. It’s idolizing not a person’s true character, but their appearance, their aesthetic and the values that they represent for you. It’s not really listening to what they’re saying, but warping their words so they fit into your perfect idea of them.
Just, unlike with undereage debasement, you do not play pretend that everything’s fine and secretly hate the other person deep down - you honestly idolize them to heaven and back, so you could never possible reach them.
You’re using them to fill in the holes in your own personality.

And that … just isn’t fun? I dunno about you, but treating studying as something that must be done perfectly with exactly the right pen and the perfect face-mask after the right smoothie and in the right lighting by a window overgrown with ivy and with perfect concentration from the first moment and unwavering, knightly passion and exact planning from 6am to bedtime all because I know deep down that I will not be able to fulfill these ideals and thus don’t have to feel bad about not reaching them just … isn’t for me. I don’t like my relationships to be all overstructured and “perfect” and high maintenance like that.

I want my friendships and my studying to be authentic. And that means that sometimes it’s messy and sometimes it’s hard and sometimes it’s quoting Keats while lying on the floor at 2am in the morning and chugging milk out of a carton, but it’s real.
I truly do understand this longing to make studying look pretty and like a magical realm, because when you’re in the flow that’s really what it feels like. But the beauty comes along with the practice, not the other way round.

No, but honestly - what do I DO then?


Y’remember Hippogriffs from Harry Potter? That’s how I imagine my subjects. Approach them carefully, honestly, maintaining eye contact and as equals and they will respect you. This scene:

This scene is what I’m talking about. 
If you were in a worship-state, you would only admire them from afar, gushing over how beautiful they are, but sad that they would never deign to even look in your general direction. (think of all the subjects you thought would be way too difficult for you)
If you were in a debasement-state, you’d either try to make friends with all the hippogriffs, hopping from one to the other and forming no bond with either or you’d “tsk” disdainfully and try to force them to obey you against their will. (*cough* Malfoy *cough*)

If, however, you’re in the green, there will be mutual respect between you and you will be able to fly.

So what does it mean to be in the green? 
It means not to do any of the above, obviously, so 

  • take your time for and invest brainpower into each and every one of your subjects - be a good friend. Be there. Listen. Even if they have crazy ideas at 4am in the morning. 
  • appreciate your subjects and know that they are more than the teacher who tries to get you to know them. Sometimes, some people just have a really shitty PR department (especially maths)
  • don’t think too much or too little of yourself. You can do amazing things, but that does not give you the license not to do amazing things anymore, rest on your laurels and expect others to applaud you for it. 

  • some relationships take longer than others to build, but getting to understand someone who puzzled you from the first moment and challenged your beliefs will improve your own personality as well
    (side-eye at PE. Yes, I love you now, you crazy athletic bastard)
  • do it for the sake of the relationship itself, because you enjoy their company. Results are presents which, although very much appreciated, should not be the main motivator to keep you going.
    This essentially means that you should think of studying as hanging out with a friend - already makes it seem so much more inviting and way less daunting, does it not?

    (Logic and I, being saltmates. Real friends judge other people together)
  • be aware that all friendships go through rocky patches and some subjects might take a while to warm up to you or you to them. But if you think that it’s worth it, then you gotta power through that. If you don’t think it’s worth it, you gotta be brave enough to say good-bye. 


Look, what I’m actually saying is … be Souma Yukihira from Food Wars.

Food Wars is a crazy and at times pretty pervy manga/anime, but I’ll be damned if it isn’t also one of the best pieces of fiction I’ve ever consumed and if Souma isn’t one of the most admirable main characters I’ve ever encountered.  

The relationship between him and cooking is filled with trust, love and equality. He trusts his cooking skills, because he knows that they have spent a long time together - cooking won’t let him down and he won’t ever let cooking down by stopping to look for ways to improve.

That doesn’t mean, however, that he’s always deadly serious - he loves to play around with cooking and to try ridiculous new things. He never forgets the joy that even the simplest form of cooking brings him. 

There’s one great episode where he puts his life as a chef on the line and someone fearfully asks him what he’d do if he lost. He shrugs and says he could become a lawyer or a teacher or something. So while he loves cooking profoundly, he does not worship it and he knows that there are other relationships he could build up if he had to. He just …doesn’t want to, because cooking is his bff. 

He loves to take on challenges to see how far he and cooking have come -

- and he takes challenges very seriously -


- but takes it even more seriously if he loses -

- and nonetheless knows that they are stronger for the challenges they have faced together. 

So, yes, this is what it means to be in the green. Cherish your friendships, hang out together, be honest, funny, clever, curious and you. 

You’ll be surprised at how much fun the two of you will have, now that all the pretensions and pressures are gone. 

Just …hang out and have fun.

(and maybe watch Food Wars!, because damn, Souma is the MVP of my inspirational heroes)

Have a great day and I’ll see you in the next (and hopefully shorter) part 4 :)

Timing Charts and Inbetweening Demo

Hey guys! So I recently finished up an inbetweening and timing charts demo and edited into an hour-ish video!
A handful of folks asked me things like how to utilize a timing chart in your work, how to in between to those charts, and basic (I say basic because there are other more advanced ways - but thats another time) to keep your drawings consistent! I also talk about smears!

The program I’m using is TVPaint, but any program can do really.

The character I’m using is created by Patrick Stannard! He’s a kickass animator!

This year my little sister is starting high school (year 7 in Australia). To help her out I decided to write a quick post with the advice I wish I’d been given when I was her age. I hope that it will make her transition easier, and hope that it will do the same for other students starting year 7. I don’t feel like writing a rambly intro today, so let’s get right into it:

Advice On School Supplies

There are some items on an average school-issued supplies list that will probably never be used, and other items not on the list that can be useful to have. These are some items I’ve found to be useful (and not so useful) over my four years at high school.

Useful (PURCHASE):

  • Good gel or fine liner pens: Most school lists tell you to get the most basic supermarket ballpoint pens available. In my experience, these just don’t cut it for the amount of writing you need to do in high school. My suggestion? A gel pen or fine liner with small nib and heavy ink flow. A grip can add extra comfort, but personally, I don’t find one necessary. Brand wise, I love Muji 0.35/0.5 gels, Staedtler Triplus fine liners, and Arline 400 fine liners.
  • Plastic document folders: These are so, so useful! Last year I had one of these for each subject (a different colour for each!) and used them to store a notebook and any handouts that I needed for the class. They protected my papers from damage and also helped me stay organised by keeping everything from the subject in one spot and letting me just grab one folder before class rather than multiple items.
  • White out tape: So much better than the liquid stuff. For one it doesn’t require drying time, and it also doesn’t run the risk of bursting and ruining your pencil case/school bag/notebook/uniform/etc.

Not Useful (GO WITHOUT):

  • Binders: These are so clunky! If you have one per subject then they take up too much space in your bag, and if you have one for everything then you have to carry all your materials to every class. Unless you just keep loose leaf paper in a slim binder (rather than notebooks), then I suggest using plastic folders instead.
  • Binder books: Just get normal notebooks. As mentioned above, binders are clunky and unnecessary. I find it better to use non-punched books, as they don’t have holes that get in the way of your writing. Or alternatively, just fill a slim binder with loose leaf and use that instead of multiple notebooks.

Advice On Class Schedules

One of the things I struggled with most when starting high school was remembering what class I had when and what room I needed to be in. The best way to stay on top of your schedule is to write it down. However I suggest using a digital program rather than pen and paper - your schedule is likely enough to change that you want to be able to make adjustments easily. You can write it in a word processing program, but I find it most useful to use an app. With a program such as iStudiez or My Study Life on your phone/tablet, you can easily schedule your classes and also add in homework due dates. Download one of these (or a similar program), and you won’t have any problems managing your timetable.

Advice On Staying Organised

The single most useful organisational tool I’ve found in four years of searching is a program called Trello. Available as both a desktop site and a mobile app, Trello has been a saviour when it comes to staying on top of tasks. The best thing about it, and what stands it apart from other organisational tools, is its great user interface. Trello, like many other programs, allows you to set lists of tasks to be completed. Like other programs, it allows you to categorise tasks and add sub-tasks. What makes it different from other programs is the way it allows you to organise and prioritise tasks. It has a simple drag and drop interface which lets you move tasks between lists with ease, and you can do the same to re-order tasks within a single list. This is super useful when it comes to sorting tasks by priority or setting up a running-order of tasks for the day. If you want to know exactly how I use Trello, just shoot me and ask and we can set up a screenshare to explain.

Advice On Taking Notes

The best advice I can give you on taking notes is just to make sure you keep them detailed and up-to-date. A good, complete set of notes is so useful when it comes to studying for tests, and you really don’t want to leave note-taking to right before one. At year 7-9 level I found taking notes in class and from class slideshows to be adequate, but in year 10 it became important to take notes from textbooks too. This will vary school-to-school, but you can use these year levels as loose guidelines.

Advice On Studying  

Spread. It. Out. I’m serious. You’re tempted to procrastinate? You’re tempted to study in one big block the weekend before the test? Don’t. Please. Trust me when I say it’s not nice to spend six hours in a day studying for the one test. Instead, study in short bursts, but study regularly. For a 7th-10th grader, I think it’s enough if your regular study regime is to simply summarise your notes at the end of each week, make flashcards, and give them a once-over study. When it comes near test time, you’ll only need a short study session to prepare. In this session I suggest you do the following:

  • Chuck the flashcards you know you’ve already memorised. Study the rest until they stick (<30 minutes).
  • Do a practice test or some practice exercises (I suggest Khan Academy for maths practice), focusing on the skills/question types you have the most trouble with (~1 hour).
  • Get together with some friends and use Kahoot to have a competitive, time-restricted quiz on the test content. You can find a pre-made quiz, or create your own for more focused study. For me, this is a really fun way to study and also the best way to make information stick long-term (~30 minutes).

Spread these activities out over the week before the test, and you are way less likely to feel overloaded than if you leave everything to the last minute.    

Advice On Homework

Repeat after me: Do it before you have to. As much as it’s tempting to procrastinate, you’ll feel much less stressed if you don’t leave work to the last minute. Rather than completing only what you have to on any given day, I suggest you work until one of the following occurs:

  1. You run out of set work to do.
  2. It becomes too late to study (please stop studying at least an hour before bed and spend some time giving yourself a little TLC instead).
  3. You become too tired out and feel you can’t work productively anymore (if you don’t have anything left due tomorrow then leave the work to another day, but if you still need to complete things then take a break or nap before getting back to it).   

Advice On Time Management

In lower high school, you’ll probably find that it is unnecessary to strictly manage your time, as long as you don’t waste it. By this I mean you will rarely feel you don’t have time to complete required work, as long as you don’t waste your time on pseudo-productive tasks like creating ultra-pretty presentations or copying your notes out. Just stick to the tasks that are actually required of you.

Advice On Making Friends

JOIN CLUBS! Clubs are a great way to have fun, get involved, and also meet people with the same interests as you. They provide a semi-structured environment in which to initiate conversation, rather than you having to randomly approach new people (which, if you are like me, is SCARY!), and also keep you meeting with your new pals on a regular basis. Once you getting chatting with someone you like, just invite them to sit with you at lunch and you’re off to a great start.

anonymous asked:

hey! i think ur art is p cool c: any tips for using ps?

thank you! here are some super quick things people may not know going in:

  • smart objects
  • masks
    • clipping masks
    • layer masks
  • adjustment layers
  • liquify, general fliters
  • blending effects
    • for layers
    • for brushes
  • grids, guides
  • history/save states/snapshots
  • importing brushes
  • workspaces
  • dark magic
    • quick exporting
    • what a contact sheet is
    • batching, scripts.

this will all be in PhotoshopCC. This is the more technical side of Photoshop instead of the fun drawing side, because let’s face it you’ll already learn that in time. This is stuff to make drawing digitally or editing or whatever easier, faster, and less trouble. These are shortcuts and smart things basically.


smart objects!

touching up? use smart objects!! please!! When you size them down they still maintain the data of the original, so you can scale and re-arrange without data lost (you can’t draw on this layer as a smart object though!). do this please. to undo this look for “rasterize layer”

this also means filters are clipped onto the layer but aren’t actually changing the layer. You can then turn them off, delete them, ect. without any repercussions. Smart objects will be more data but they are safe bets.

you won’t see this for drawing and painting but when you’re editing your drawings for maybe a poster or compiling them this is super useful! 

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This is a very quick transcription of a basic spirit gratitude ritual that we do here for our companions at MM. Note that this may not work for every entity (some of our darker counterparts have said something along the lines of “Come on, what am I? An Overlord of Cake?” though most get the gesture and that is what matters.)

This is a small dedication ceremony, so the purpose is to give thanks, and to assert (for the first time, or again on an anniversary/birthday, etc) your intentions with them and what you hope the friendship blossoms into.

You can absolutely do your own variation of this, make it into a party, or really make it yours!

What you will need:

Three Plates/Bowls/Platters

A Coin

Two tealights or small multipurpose candles

Incense or Singular Purpose (Not used elsewhere) Candle

Cinnamon

Tea or Wine (Water if you have neither, or milk if you prefer)

Offerings such as Cake, Candy, Crystals, Seeds, Flowers, etc.

A hand-drawn sigil or heart that has been cut out of the original paper or is on a smaller piece of paper.


Steps:

1. Lay the three vessels out. Two of them are for any food items you may have or wish to share, so if you aren’t sharing, you will not need them both. We usually share, as it feels more communal that way, which is an energy many entities like. This is up to you and your friend!  Arrange them in a triangle with one at the top and two diagonally out from either side. 

2. Place and arrange any food items or personal offerings on the two plates, serving them first, and then yourself. If you are using gems, or something inedible, you may still do this symbolically if you wish.

3. Place the two candles on either side of the top plate. Welcome your entities forth as you cleanse the space and consecrate it. Take this time to ground and shield so that you are interacting only with the energies you are welcoming into the space.

4. The Dedication - Have the coin, incense or single use candle, cinnamon, and wine/beverage handy. You may change the phrasing if you wish! State “This is my dedication to you, ____. These are the promises I wish to keep to you, as a friend, as a companion, and as a human counterpart. I thank you so much for choosing to stay here with me, and to help me on my Earthly journey. I value you and look forward to growing alongside you. – Insert any personal dedications here-

5. Place the coin on the top plate. Say something along the lines of “Let this coin symbolize the wealth of our friendship, and the richness that comes from having you in my life.

6. Light the candle or incense and place it on the plate. [Dorm folks can use battery candles!] Say something along the lines of “As this flame alights, I thank you for providing a guiding light and inspiration in my life. Let it symbolize the enlightenment that comes from our friendship.

7. Place the cinnamon on the plate. Say something along the lines of “Let this cinnamon represent the grounded, sturdy nature of our friendship, and the sweetness that comes from working with one another.”

8. Place the beverage on the plate. Say something along the lines of “As the river nourishes the earth and allows for growth, so do we inspire growth and enlightenment in one another. Take this libation as my thanks for being a teacher and a friend.”

9. Lastly, place the hand-drawn figure or sigil on the plate. Say something like “Let this sigil represent the time and effort I dedicate to you as you have dedicated to me. This friendship involves work and passion on both parts, and this is my dedication to you that I will do what it takes to show you the love and respect you have shown to me

10. Say any further prayers or dedications, and feel free to bring out tarot cards at this point and allow them to communicate through that or other mediums of scrying or divination. Leave out the offerings as long as you like, bury them in the earth, or consume them if the entity is understanding and if you cannot afford to waste. Know that portions of offerings do not need to be huge, it truly is the thought that counts. 

Note that you can also use apps such as Ghost Radar or Echovox if you use those types of programs, as communication seems to pick up at this time. 

We like to do this on saturdays and follow it with divination, wine/beer, and treats. You can also do it with other spirit companion friends of yours and bring different entity families together! This may not be the perfect schematic for all spirit families, depending on cultures, needs, and preferences, but hopefully it will give you a good outline!

We wish you much love, light, and laughter!

-MM

Originally posted by hppybday2u

Always

For @ransomweek - March 28: “Remember that time…”

warnings: senior year nostalgia, oblivious pining, excessively soft bromance


“Okay,” Lardo said, taking another swig from the bottle of gin they’d been passing around. “Worst class you’ve ever taken?”

The noise of another kegster, not their last together but frighteningly close to it, thrummed through the floor of the attic. Sometime after midnight Nursey and Chowder had started trying to go through various Haus rules, proper kegstand procedure and ratios for tub juice, with the Tadpoles like Holster and Ransom had done for the past two years, and Ransom had found himself hit with senior-year nostalgia again. It was the kind of weird, happy-sad ache that pulled from under his ribs and made him want to hold onto everything tighter.

He was going to graduate in May. He’d been accepted to med programs at Emory and UPenn, and he was waiting to hear back from a couple other schools. His future wasn’t some nebulous concept any more; it felt real. It felt too close. It was so much easier just to melt back against his bed, next to his two best friends, and to soak up the way their words seemed to roll around the room and fill it up completely.

Holster snorted and leaned against Ransom, reaching around him for the bottle but not moving away once he had it. “International Finance Theory with Professor Lawrence.”

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Living in Gotham

- School drills include how to deal with a fear gas attack and what to do if the any of the rouges attack.

- Most citizens could beat up thugs in other cities without a blink of the eye.

- The schools have programs in place if they feel a student is likely to turn to the criminal life.

- Instead of kids playing I spy game with different objects, they play I spy the bat.

- Local tabloids are half the Wayne family and half the different vigilantes that dot the roof tops.

- Collecting batarangs is a thing. Like there are so many hanging out on streets. Constant remembers to not let children have them.

- Gas mask are a common item in most households. You always need to be prepared.

- Apartment contracts having rules about no vigilant activity. 

- School closing due to hostage situations or chemical attack on the city. It’s like snow days and extra days are built in the calendar for it. 

- Nightwing is often voted best looking Gotham citizens every year. 

- Conspiracy online websites are a thing. Like who is batman, how do they afford it, and the most important question; who is single.