recombine

The Cygnus Wall of Star Formation : Sometimes, stars form in walls bright walls of interstellar gas. In this vivid skyscape, stars are forming in the W-shaped ridge of emission known as the Cygnus Wall. Part of a larger emission nebula with a distinctive outline popularly called The North America Nebula, the cosmic ridge spans about 20 light-years. Constructed using narrowband data to highlight the telltale reddish glow from ionized hydrogen atoms recombining with electrons, the image mosaic follows an ionization front with fine details of dark, dusty forms in silhouette. Sculpted by energetic radiation from the regions young, hot, massive stars, the dark shapes inhabiting the view are clouds of cool gas and dust with stars likely forming within. The North America Nebula itself, NGC 7000, is about 1,500 light-years away. via NASA

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The Flame Nebula in Visible and Infrared : What lights up the Flame Nebula? Fifteen hundred light years away towards the constellation of Orion lies a nebula which, from its glow and dark dust lanes, appears, on the left, like a billowing fire. But fire, the rapid acquisition of oxygen, is not what makes this Flame glow. Rather the bright star Alnitak, the easternmost star in the Belt of Orion visible just to the right of the nebula, shines energetic light into the Flame that knocks electrons away from the great clouds of hydrogen gas that reside there. Much of the glow results when the electrons and ionized hydrogen recombine. The above false-color picture of the Flame Nebula was taken is a composite of both visible and infrared light, the later energy band being where a young star cluster becomes visible. The Flame Nebula is part of the Orion Molecular Cloud Complex, a star-forming region that includes the famous Horsehead Nebula. via NASA

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I googled science pick-up lines and I was not disappointed
  • You’re so hot, you denature my proteins. 
  • Do you have 11 protons? ‘Cause you’re Sodium fine!  
  • You make my anoxic sediments want to increase their redox potential. 
  • I’m more attracted to you than F is attracted to an electron. 
  • We fit together like the sticky ends of recombinant DNA. 
  • You’re hotter than a bunsen burner set to full power. 
  • If I were a neurotransmitter, I would be dopamine so I could activate your reward pathway. 
  • According to the second law of thermodynamics, you’re supposed to share your hotness with me. 
  • How about me and you go back to my place and form a covalent bond?
  • I wish I were Adenine because then I could get paired with U.
  • If you were C6, and I were H12, all we would need is the air we breathe to be sweeter than sugar.
  • I want to stick to u like glue-cose.
  • You must be the one for me, since my selectively permeable membrane let you through. 

I’m in a very “late-’90s nostalgia” place right now, so let me pick up where I left off last night and ramble on about why Animorphs was so fucking great.

So, in the beginning, the series had very distinct good guys and bad guys.

Now, what made them good guys and bad guys?

Well, their goals made them good guys and bad guys.

One side was fighting to enslave humanity and destroy the Earth. The other side was fighting to keep that from happening.

And, in the beginning, that was enough.

But it’s a sixty-book series, and a little ways in, by about book sixteen, the kids are starting to ask themselves (and each other), “Hey. Wait. No. Can we honestly pretend the ends justify the means?”

“Can we honestly tell ourselves that, because we’re defending our planet, literally anything we do is automatically justified?”

“Is it not possible for us to go too far?”

“Are there moves that it’s fundamentally morally indefensible to make?”

And from that point onward, it’s not just about goals. Now it’s also about tactics. They’re the good guys because they have Limits, because they have Rules.

They say, “No, we’re not going to pretend the ends justify the means.”

“We’re not going to sink to the level of our enemies.”

“We’re not going to be cruel. We’re not going to be cutthroat. We’re not going to be inhumane or controlling. We’re gonna be clean. We’re gonna be good. We’re gonna be ethical and compassionate.”

“There’s no point fighting our enemies if we just become them in the process. We have to be the bigger people.”

And, again, for a while, that’s enough.

But if the series is about anything, it’s about how war breaks down everything you think you know about yourself. By the end of the series, all six main characters have committed atrocities on a massive scale.

There’s one book late in the series where they literally threaten to nuke their own hometown, and all the innocent people in it, because it becomes strategically advantageous.

Now, they end up not having to because the enemy folds, but the fact that they almost did it, the fact that they would have done it if they’d been pushed just a little bit farther, fucking haunts them.

But at least they didn’t, right? Like, if nothing else, at least they have the small, quiet comfort of knowing it ultimately didn’t come to that.

Oh, except, four books later, they end up nuking it, anyway.

It’s that kind of series. You’re never out of the woods.

In the beginning, the good guys’ leader, Jake, is specifically a reluctant leader. He didn’t want the job. He didn’t ask for it. If he could, he’d happily give it to someone else. He becomes the leader because he’s the one every other member of the group instinctively turns to when times are tough.

He becomes the leader because they need him to be the leader.

Not because he wants power, not because he likes it, not because he thinks he’s the best guy for the job. But solely because, when the chips are down, he’s the one they turn to. Every time.

They elect him, despite his own protests.

He is humble, and he is brave, and he’s this very idealized archetype.

He’s very much cast in the mold of, like, Pop Culture George Washington, the venerated veteran who naturally, effortlessly just exudes strength and power and wisdom and confidence and charisma but honestly really just wants a moment alone in the shade.

That changes by the end of the series.

By the end of the series, he is just a straight-up dictator. He has seventeen thousand defenseless prisoners executed just because he can.

Just because he wants to watch them die.

It’s actually pointed out in the last book, in canon, that he is, by all rights, a war criminal several times over – and that the only reason he’s not being prosecuted is because he was on the winning side.

A lot of fucked-up shit happens in the last five or ten books. Probably the most downright sickening thing is when the good guys recruit a small army of physically disabled kids, then basically throw them at the enemy as a momentary distraction. And they’re slaughtered. All of them.

But what makes the series memorable isn’t just that a lot of really dark and shocking stuff ends up happening. That’s not special by itself.

It’s that the characters spend so much time talking about it.

You know, it’s a kids’ series – these are, like, fourth-grade reading level – that isn’t remotely afraid to have hard conversations about how there’s no such thing as a good war, how even good people can be swayed to do terrible things, and how no one is ever above reproach.

I’m not going to say it’s necessarily perfect, sensitivity-wise, but it’s kind of amazing how much it doesn’t take for granted.

It’s very willing to have the debate (whatever debate happens to be at hand), show all sides, and let that play out to its natural endpoint.

And all this exists in a series that also has plots like, “I turned into a starfish, and a random little kid chopped me in half (because kids are jerks), and then both halves regenerated into a separate me, except one is good and one is evil, weirdly, for some reason, and we need to recombine ourselves by electrocuting each other.”

- Mod A.

Arabic-Inspired Lentil Loaf and Jerusalem Salad

Don’t mind my cat’s tail! That really is the best picture from my bunch and I couldn’t stop laughing, so I had to!

I had this ambitious idea to make lentil burgers this week and sometime around, hmm, right before lunch I said, “Or, I could skip getting it stuck all over my hands and sorting through the dud burgers and just smash the whole thing into a baking dish and call it a loaf.” I did make some significant changes to the flavor profile, so this is not my lentil burger recipe. I’ll have to share that with you sometime I’m not so lazy! I made the flavor profile much more Arabic seven-spice inspired and infused it with a tart glaze on top that adds a contrast to the deep earthiness of that spice mixture.

On the side, I served a Jerusalem salad. I had this salad for the first time at a shawarma place on my college campus and it’s taken me this long to properly replicate the dressing. It gives the plate a really nice fresh note and a little bit of coolness. I think these pair beautifully.

Loaf

  • 1 lb dried lentils, rinsed and picked over
  • 2 eggs (or egg substitute)
  • 1 TBSP olive oil
  • 1 cup rolled oats, milled into flour
  • ½ large onion, diced
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 serrano, minced 
  • large handful of spinach, chopped
  • 2 TBSP fresh parsley, minced
  • salt, to taste
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 1 + ½ TBSP cumin
  • ½ TBSP paprika
  • ⅛ tsp clove
  • ⅛ tsp nutmeg
  • ¼  tsp cinnamon
  • ½  tsp cardamon 

Glaze

  • 2 TBSP pomegranate molasses
  • juice of a lemon
  • 1 tsp sugar

Directions: Cook the lentils to package instruction ahead of time and have your vegetables prepared as well. Preheat the oven to 350F. In a food processor mill your oats and set them aside in a small bowl. Next, pulse your lentils in the food processor. Do not turn it into a puree, just pulse it around a few times to break them up a bit. If you think the lentils don’t have enough “give” to them add a tablespoon or two of water. In a large mixing bowl, toss in the lentil mixture, the 2 eggs, and the oil. Stir it around a bit. Now, add in the onion, carrots, garlic, serrano, spinach, parsley, and all salt + spices. Stir it around to combine thoroughly. Lastly, add in the oat flour and stir to recombine. In a small saucepan, pour in the pomegranate molasses, the lemon juice, and the bit of sugar. Heat it up over high heat and once it bubbles, take it down to low, and stir constantly until it thickens slightly.

Spray a baking dish (around 11”x13”) with no stick, spoon in the mixture, and even it out. Pour the pomegranate glaze on top and stick it in the oven. Cooking time will vary depending on ovens and dish dimensions so start checking for doneness at the 25-30 minute mark. 10-12 servings.

Salad

  • 1 lb cucumber, diced
  • 1 lb vine ripe tomatoes, diced (don’t keep too much of the “guts”)
  • ½ red onion, diced
  • 2 TBSP fresh parsley, minced
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice (2-3 lemons depending on ripeness)
  • ¼ cup tahini paste
  • 3 TBSP plain, unsweetened Greek yogurt or alternative (I used So Delicious)
  • 1 large clove of garlic
  • salt, to taste

Directions: Prepare vegetables (except the garlic) and place them in a mixing bowl. In the food processor combine the lemon juice, tahini, yogurt, garlic, and salt. Blitz it until completely smooth. Pour it on top of the vegetables and stir to combine. Ideally, let it sit the fridge for a bit before serving.

Why I didn’t like the Maximum Ride movie

It’s awful. This film only takes half, at most, of what Maximum Ride is about. Let’s rhyme it off.

- The house in the mountains is supposed to be the safest and most comfortable place the flock has ever been to. They. Do. Not. Want. To. Leave. Angel gets captured when the flock are ambushed by a team of Erasers with a CHOPPER while out picking wild strawberries near their secret house in the woods, where they are not cooped up inside all the time; they can go outside and fly around freely.

- Max’s first encounter with Nudge in the film is her threatening and yelling at Nudge. Max is their mother figure; she doesn’t yell at the flock, with the exception of Fang.

- They mis-aged all the characters. Angel is supposed to be 6, Gazzy is 8, Nudge is 11, and Max, Iggy and Fang are 14. Not so in the film.

- Max NEVER had the files on their identities hidden in the house. Ever. Those were found by the flock at the school much later in the storyline.

- When the flock abandoned the house and went on the run, all 5 (not including the captured Angel) were on the way to Lake Mead. Max split from the group to help Ella (the unnamed girl who Max rescued in the film), who was being bullied by several boys, and not from some drunk boyfriend, as Ella is also only 14.

- When Max is shot, Dr. Martinez, who is a VET and not a DOCTOR, examined her and discovered Max’s wings due to the fact that the bullet injured Max’s wing as well as her shoulder. Max was x-rayed and her chip was found in her FOREARM. Dr. Martinez and Ella both know about the Flock and their avian-hybrid capabilities, and in the film, they’re left in the dark and are barely a blip on the plot-line map. Max is then made to wait at somewhere around 3 days before her wing is healed enough to fly to Lake Mead.

- When Max catches up to the flock at Lake Mead, the flock are staying in a CAVE. Not a cabin, with food and warmth and beds. A cave. Eating stolen food out of dumpsters and snacking on some chocolate chip cookies that Dr. Martinez made for Max before Max left. They learn new flying techniques from the family of hawks that nest nearby.

- It appears that all of the flock have chips embedded in them somewhere, as the School seems able to monitor their physical statuses.

- Max is meant to accidentally kill Ari in a one-on-one fight in the sewers below the School while escaping with the flock and several other able-bodied recombinant DNA kids, and Total, the talking dog. Jeb finds Ari as Max is leaving the tunnel behind the rest of the pack, and as Max is flying away, he yells after her that she killed her own brother. Whoops. Way to forget a super important plot twist.

- Max’s first encounter with the Voice, the thing that showed her all those images of her childhood and New York at the end of the film, is supposed to be VERBAL. It’s the VOICE. It speaks.

- They neglected to mention that Ari, Jeb’s son and the main Eraser character of the film, is only 7 years old, and aged physically due to his DNA being effed with when he became and Eraser.

- Angel does actually speak. She doesn’t say a word in the film until almost the end of the movie. She does actually talk.

- Max sees none of those images about her childhood or about a file. She sees images of New York and the word Institution repeated over and over. That is the only clue they have when they set out for New York.

- Nudge is a much more happy-go-lucky character than she is portrayed as in the movie, where she is an emotional, angsty teenager.

- Wtf was with the casting choices, dude? Max needs to be way move average build, not a toothpick. Toothpicks can’t hold their own in a fight against superhuman wolf-men. Fang needed long black hair. Iggy’s wings were supposed to be white, as were Gazzy’s and Angel’s. Not to mention they were all several years too old for their characters. Ew. Just ew.

Other than all that, the pacing was terrible, there was no sense of urgency to the film, and no real sense of danger in the scenes where Angel is being experimented on. The tests in the book were portrayed to be much more severe, and they were more like rat-in-a-maze type tests than intellectual, solve-the-equation type tests.

Also, the scars on their backs are complete BS. The wings fold up small, close to their backs. Not INTO their backs. They don’t just go poof. Sorry. Way to avoid any of the potentially-accurate sciencey bits, Mr. Director. I can’t believe James Patterson signed off on this bullcrap.

nytimes.com
We Aren’t Built to Live in the Moment
What best distinguishes human beings from other animals is our foresight, as scientists are just beginning to recognize.
By Martin E. P. Seligman and John Tierney

Most prospection occurs at the unconscious level as the brain sifts information to generate predictions. Our systems of vision and hearing, like those of animals, would be overwhelmed if we had to process every pixel in a scene or every sound around us. Perception is manageable because the brain generates its own scene, so that the world remains stable even though your eyes move three times a second. This frees the perceptual system to heed features it didn’t predict, which is why you’re not aware of a ticking clock unless it stops. It’s also why you don’t laugh when you tickle yourself: You already know what’s coming next.

What best distinguishes our species is an ability that scientists are just beginning to appreciate: We contemplate the future. Our singular foresight created civilization and sustains society. It usually lifts our spirits, but it’s also the source of most depression and anxiety, whether we’re evaluating our own lives or worrying about the nation. Other animals have springtime rituals for educating the young, but only we subject them to “commencement” speeches grandly informing them that today is the first day of the rest of their lives.

A more apt name for our species would be Homo prospectus, because we thrive by considering our prospects. The power of prospection is what makes us wise. Looking into the future, consciously and unconsciously, is a central function of our large brain, as psychologists and neuroscientists have discovered — rather belatedly, because for the past century most researchers have assumed that we’re prisoners of the past and the present.

Our emotions are less reactions to the present than guides to future behavior. Therapists are exploring new ways to treat depression now that they see it as primarily not because of past traumas and present stresses but because of skewed visions of what lies ahead.

If you’re a chimp, you spend much of the day searching for your next meal. If you’re a human, you can usually rely on the foresight of your supermarket’s manager, or you can make a restaurant reservation for Saturday evening thanks to a remarkably complicated feat of collaborative prospection. You and the restaurateur both imagine a future time — “Saturday” exists only as a collective fantasy — and anticipate each other’s actions. You trust the restaurateur to acquire food and cook it for you. She trusts you to show up and give her money, which she will accept only because she expects her landlord to accept it in exchange for occupying his building.

The brain’s long-term memory has often been compared to an archive, but that’s not its primary purpose. Instead of faithfully recording the past, it keeps rewriting history. Recalling an event in a new context can lead to new information being inserted in the memory. Coaching of eyewitnesses can cause people to reconstruct their memory so that no trace of the original is left.

The fluidity of memory may seem like a defect, especially to a jury, but it serves a larger purpose. It’s a feature, not a bug, because the point of memory is to improve our ability to face the present and the future. To exploit the past, we metabolize it by extracting and recombining relevant information to fit novel situations.

the purest specimen of truth

this is actually for @leiascully​‘s @xfficchallenges​: the fic you’d never write. normally i don’t write “everything was beautiful and nothing hurt” william fics, let alone fics where he’s a teeeeeen! so i did that, but i was also at the science march in d.c. this weekend and obvi i had to fic an au where scully was there so…also, all the signs mentioned herein were actually witnessed irl haha also, the title of scully’s academic paper is based in real science but to my knowledge doesn’t exist…yet.


“What about I was told there’d be pie — but it’s the symbol for pi?”

Scully sighed without looking up at him, though she did admittedly choke back a smile which she wasn’t about to reward him with.

“That is clever,” she said, tapping the capped end of a Sharpie against her temple, “But I was partial to your original idea.”

He chuckled, “At the start of every disaster movie there’s a scientist being ignored?

She does smile then, peering at him overtop her reading glasses, which have slowly but surely become a permanent fixture atop her head over the last few years.

“Well, it’s true!” He bellows, playfully slapping his hand down atop the dining room table, “The Core, Dante’s Peak, The Day After Tomorrow, Twister —  that one we saw in theaters where they did an autopsy on Gwyneth Paltrow — ?”

Contagion,” she said, uncapping a marker with her teeth, “Which was impressively accurate, by the way. Not just the autopsy scene but later, the visual showing the way in which new viruses are formed by the recombination of DNA or RNA from different species of animal hosts?”  

“I’ll take your word for it,” he said, watching her squint intently down at her poster board, outlining the letters with a pathologist’s steady hand. He reached for a Sharpie, his finger grazing the back of her hand as he did. “So,” he said, flicking the cap off with his thumb, “Are you nervous?”

Her hand froze and she visibly stiffened. He immediately regretted bringing it up but as was his wont, he couldn’t help himself. 

“Yes,” she said after an agonizingly long moment of silence.“I still don’t understand why they asked me to speak,” she muttered, refusing to look up at him.

Mulder scoffed, “Scully — you fucking cured Tay-Sachs.”

“No,” she snapped, pointing her Sharpie at him, “I did not cure it. Not yet.

Recombiant Adeno-Associated Virus PHP.B Serotype for Cross-Correctional Enzyme Transfer Across the Blood Brain Barrier in Lipid Storage Disorders,” he recited on a single breath, “Sounds like a cure to me.”

She gave him a warm smile, “You memorized the title of my paper?”

“What can I say, I’m your biggest fan,” he grinned. She blushed, which of course only made him grin harder.

“I wish you’d look over my speech…” she said softly, picking up her marker again and retracing a giant letter S.

“I told you, Scully, they don’t want a speech from Fox Mulder: former FBI agent and profiler turned New York Times best-selling, National Book Award-winning author,” he said, though not unkindly, “They want a speech from former FBI agent, medical doctor, professor, surgeon, American Medical Association award-winning, guest-lecture giving, honorary degree-having, enigmatic, Dr. Dana Katherine Scully. Who also happens to be my best friend, the love of my life, and the mother of my child,” he said, “And a damn fine shot, too.”

“Oh, Mulder…” she tutted, shaking her head. As if on cue, they heard booming footfalls on the stairs and a second later Will skidded into the room, brandishing a poster board.

At 16, he was just about Mulder’s height and just as lanky and would probably be taller than him by the end of the summer; if his propensity for eating a week’s worth of groceries in a weekend was any indication of his basic metabolic rate and robust genetic profile.

Will cleared his throat, feigning seriousness, but his eyes sparkled with his father’s particular brand of indolence, “Brace yourselves for the unremitting sheen of my brilliance.”

Scully snorted. Mulder and Will threw her identical, indignant looks.

“I’m sorry,” she said, putting her hands up in surrender, “You are your father’s son, Will. No doubt about it.”

Mulder nudged her foot with his under the table, “Was there ever really any doubt, Scully?”

She gave him a long look, which did not get passed Will. Not much did. 

“I detect a rather abrupt change in atmosphere,” Will said, licking his finger and holding it in the air as if to sense a gust of wind.

“Son,” Mulder said gravely, not taking his eyes off Scully, “There’s something we have to tell you.”

Scully frowned, but before she could speak she saw the faintest glimmer in Mulder’s eye and relaxed a bit.

“What?” Will said, slumping down in the chair closest to his father, letting his sign drop to the floor.

“William…Uncle Walter …is your real dad,” Mulder said, his mouth twitching around a grin.

“That explains why I find you and Mom so ridiculous,” Will said, rolling his eyes in with such form that it rivaled even his mother’s practiced art.

“No, that’s just ‘cuz you’re an angsty teen,” Mulder said, ruffling his son’s hair. Will blushed at the childishness of the gesture — more so because, even as a young man, he still craved his father’s approval and affection and was relieved to be in receipt of it.

“Let’s see your sign, Will,” Scully said, capping a nearby Sharpie that was teetering precariously over the edge of the dining room table.

Will reached for the posterboard, brandishing it high above his head. With a flourish, he turned it so they could read its words as he proclaimed them.

SCIENTISTS ARE PRO-TESTING!” He bellowed, and while he expected his father to laugh heartily and give him a high-five, neither of them expected that his mother would laugh. Certainly no so hard.

After a minute or two went by, Will and Mulder both eyed Scully with a kind of nervous fascination, wondering if perhaps they would have to sedate her.

“Have you…have you ever seen her like this?” Will said, his voice low.

Mulder didn’t take his eyes off Scully, who had lowered her head onto the table, collapsed like a pop-tent. Her shoulders still shaking and her muffled giggles getting lost against the polished cherrywood.

“Once,” he said slowly, “But she was drugged.”

This only made Scully laugh harder. When she finally lifted her head, her face was a hot shade of blush-pink and sallow with tear stains.

“I appreciate the encouragement, Mom,” Will said, “But there’s no need to stroke my ego that much. It’s a good sign but it’s not that good.”

Scully reached up to wipe her eyes on the sleeve of her faded Quantico sweatshirt — which was older than Will by about a decade. She sighed deeply, then looked at them both through damp eyes and with a warm, almost cherubic smile.

“No, no, it is a good sign, Will. It’s just…” she sighed again, then drew in a long, sobering breath, “After all your father and I have been through, all that we’ve seen, the things that we’ve fought for…” she looked at Mulder, then. “The FBI sent me to your father because of my faith in science. They believed that science and reason would take him down. It didn’t, though. If anything it became an asset to his cause, and somewhere along the line I became — and so did the science I brought with me — the enemy.”

She lowered her eyes to her own sign, which suddenly seemed incapable of capturing everything she wanted — and needed — to say.

“The science helped sometimes,” Mulder said softly, “But you were the real strength, Scully.”

She smiled up at him as he reached across the table to squeeze her hand, “I guess I just find it preposterous that we have to protest this at all,” she said, shrugging slightly, “That the persecution we faced as a result of our pursuit of the truth has somehow become so much bigger than just us, than the X-files.”

“This whole political milieu is a freakin’ X-file,” Will grumbled.

“Nice 10-point vocab word there, dude.” Mulder said, clapping his son on the back.

“What can I say — my dad writes books.” Will shrugged.

Mulder beamed at Scully, who had rested her chin on her hand.

“Mulder,” she said, her voice hoarse from her laughing jag, “You never told me Skinner was a writer.”


“There must be almost 50,000 people out there,” Scully breathed, her nails digging into the skin of Mulder’s left hand. They could hear the roar of the crowd from beyond the stage — or possibly the rain, which was coming down in sheets. Of course, given that it was a crowd of scientists, they were prepared with slickers and umbrellas, upon which many had inscribed: “Science predicted rain today.”

“You’re gonna be great,” he said, kissing the side of her head which was damp with sweat or rain water or both.

“At least you’re not after Bill Nye,” Will offered, “No one wants to follow him.”

Scully groaned and pressed herself into Mulder’s chest.

“That’s true,” Mulder said, rubbing her back, “Plus, if you screw it all up, no one will remember because they’ll just remember Bill Nye and the fact that Thomas Dolby is gonna sing She Blinded Me With Science.”

“Wait, what song is this?” Will said, digging his phone out of his pocket presumably to YouTube it.

“It’s about your mother,” Mulder said, “Especially the lyric: she’s tidied up and I can’t find anything.”

“Mulder, I want a divorce,” Scully said from somewhere under Mulder’s chin.

“We’re not married, Scully.”

She pulled her head back from his coat and looked up at him, “Fox William Mulder, will you marry me?”

“Sure,” he grinned, running his thumb along her chin.

“Ok,” she said, pressing herself back into his chest again. Then, “Mulder—?”

“Yeah, Scully?”

“I want a divorce.”


The gray sky opened up over the undulating crowd.  If anyone looked up, they’d drown.  

“She looks — ” Will said, standing next to his father backstage, watching his mother at the podium.

“Brilliant? Amazing? Powerful? Divine?” Mulder finished.

Will snorted, “I was gonna say scared shitless.

Though her voice was steady and clear, from his vantage point Mulder could see what the audience could not: how Scully was anxiously lifting and lowering her stockinged foot from her sleek high heel, running the front of her toes along the back of her calf.

God, he was proud of her. God, he loved her.

“…to shed light on what has typically been sequestered away to labs and libraries and lecture halls. To put on full display the humanity that has for centuries stoked the fire of scientific inquiry, refined it, rejoiced in its revelations and more often, endured the frustrations of its arcanum.”

She looked up from her notes, then, and not out at the audience — but to her right, to him and to their son. The next words she spoke, he understood, she had not written for the masses, or for history — but for them.

“The truth exists whether we believe it or not. It endures even the most violent scrutiny and ruthless persecution. As we persist in seeking it, may we find solace in knowing that there is no person, no institution, no government, with jurisdiction over it. It can be suppressed, hidden, censored, altered or misappropriated, refuted and denied,” she paused, looking back to her audience who waited on baited breath, “What those who try to manipulate it beyond recognition, who try to eradicate it and replace it with calculated imitations, fail to recognize is that when all of those measures fail – and they will fail — what remains is the purest specimen of truth.”

She looks back at Mulder, then. At their son. And she smiles, “And it is those of us who want to believe such a truth can be revealed to us who will one day find it, and bring it into the light.”

goddess-of-graphite  asked:

R&D Uchiha AU - headcanon that Obito was a different kind of nerd than the rest of the Uchiha so he couldn't find his niche, and he was just. SO. MAD. that someone like Kakashi could make his own jutsu like - "oh yeah, I've been working on this in my down time, it's a super-powerful one-hit kill technique." BAKASHI. NO. INVENTING COOL JUTSU IS SUPPOSED TO BE AN UCHIHA'S SCHTICK. But everything Obito comes up with is weird or unfeasible. My poor sad bby.

Given how Obito was in canon, I can see this actually being a thing. Maybe Obito isn’t good at inventing jutsus, but he’s one of the few Uchiha who’s able to actually use them in a fight because of his penchant for Xanatos Speed Chess the the ability to alter and recombine jutsus on the fly. He can’t create anything new, but give him a slightly wonky Katon jutsu, a half-powered Raiton, and a sluggish Doton and throw him into a dangerous situation, and suddenly you’ve got a volcano erupting underneath your feet and no idea how the fuck it happened. 

Are you made of copper and tellurium...?

#SanversWeek Day Two: Nerd Girlfriends.

More SMUT FOR YOUR READING PLEASURE. And there will be more tomorrow hehe.

@404artnotfound is literally beta goals holy fuck.

[Read on AO3]


It starts fairly innocently. The gang is together at the bar, shooting pool and drinking together after a big win against Cadmus. Maggie had been looking at her through hooded eyes all night, and it’s starting to rile Alex up until…

“Are you made of Copper and Tellurium?” Maggie drawls in her ear when the rest of the group gets distracted by Lena declaring in slight tipsiness that she would build Kara a soft serve machine in her apartment.

Alex groans, dropping her head to the table heavily and waiting for her ridiculous girlfriend to continue.

“Because you are Cu-Te.”

“You’re gonna have to try harder than that, Sawyer.” Alex mutters, lifting her head to squint at Maggie. She looks far too proud of herself at the line, sliding closer to Alex in the booth and placing a dangerous hand just a little too high on her thigh.

Keep reading

Jung’s Te, Abridged

These articles are an attempt to condense Chapter X of Psychological Types into a more readable format. I’ve tried to stay as true to the original texts as possible. Enjoy!

Foreword

Extroverted Thinking

Extroverted Thinking is a type of mechanistic reasoning that is primarily oriented by external conditions and objective facts. As a result, it’s generally conscientious and quick to meet the demands and challenges presented by the outside world. Its external nature doesn’t mean that it only deals with concrete things – it can also be totally abstract, but the abstract concepts it plays with tend to be learnt from education, or borrowed from the intellectual culture of the time. It tends to concretise ideas and lead them into the outer world. Its conclusions should have some some objective effect or relevance, they should be externally applicable in some way.

There is no difference between the logic employed by Te and Ti. The differences lie in the preferred type of data and the preferred way of shaping ideas, as mentioned above. Te operates most cleverly and effectively when it has a lifeline to facts and generally accepted ideas, which it shapes in productive ways. This might give a pessimistic observer the impression that Te is restricted and “inside the box”, when in reality it has an an impressive creativity and capability in its preferred realm.

However, when objective facts and borrowed ideas become so important to Te that they overwhelm the subjective thought process completely, it loses its creative spark. It’s hardly Thinking anymore, as it only serves to reflect what is already obvious in a set of data and never goes beyond it. It will not even try to compare the ideas with the user’s own past experiences, which remain dissociated and useless in his psyche for lack of an intellectual link.

The Extroverted Thinking Type

This type orients his life around a set of intellectual conclusions that are based in objective facts and ideas. He applies his credo not only to himself, but also to his environment, or even the universe at large. It constitutes his morality; good and bad, right and wrong are measured by it. His intellectual formula may include virtues like love and charity, but these usually require the cooperation of Feeling in order to embody them properly. In a healthy type, he and his formula are extremely useful to society. In an unhealthy one, he rudely attempts to force everyone into one rigid mould.

Since Te is his dominant function, it possesses the positive, creative element of his personality. It synthesises and recombines objective data into new facts and concepts. His Thinking doesn’t destroy or tear down, or if it does, he tries to fill the empty space with a new intellectual value. By contrast, inferior Te is missing the same productive life-energy. In the worst case, it tends towards conclusions that are banal or pessimistic, and insofar as it’s consciously used, it can really only mimic the perspective of that type’s dominant function.

The Te type is most beneficial and harmless when he applies his Thinking to problems far from home, where his ideas can be appreciated by his peers at a safe distance. On the other hand, if he applies his Thinking to his immediate surroundings (for example his workplace or his personal life), the people subject to it might be forced to endure a side of him that is dogmatic and tyrannical.

The one who suffers the most is the Te type. In pursuing his intellectual ideal, he brushes aside everything in himself that doesn’t correspond to it. In particular, he represses Feeling, which exists consciously only as long as it agrees with Thinking. Otherwise, it becomes unconscious, however it isn’t powerless. It subverts his conscious life in nasty ways. His altruistic formula might be sabotaged by a secret selfishness or resentment, or his passion might cause him to lie and cheat for its sake – “the ends justify the means”. Criticism of his ideas might strike his unconscious sensitivity. His personal and family life suffers from his difficulty with Feeling.