structural work

The Brooklyn Bridge opened on this day in 1883. The bridge’s opening day was marked in both the cities of New York and Brooklyn and over 1,000 vehicles and 150,000+ people crossed the bridge that first day. Initially designed by John Roebling, a German engineer who had designed some of America’s shorter suspension bridges, the bridge went through its fair share of chief engineers. Shortly after getting his plans approved, John’s foot was crushed by a ferry, he contracted tetanus, and died within a month of the accident. This meant his son, Washington Roebling, had to take over as chief engineer. However, he too suffered health issues. After spending a lot of time over three years supervising the riverbed’s excavation in caissons (watertight structures used to work on bridge foundations), he was stricken with the bends and became bedridden. And so, Emily Warren Roebling, Washington Roebling’s wife, became the “first woman field engineer”. She spent the duration of the construction period both caring for her husband and ferrying information back and forth from him to the site. Upon the bridge’s completion, and in advance of the official opening, Emily became first to officially cross the bridge, carrying a rooster as a symbol of victory. Want to learn more about Emily? Come visit us, she’s one of the characters featured in NEW YORK AT ITS CORE. 

2013.3.1.735
Edmund Vincent Gillon
[Looking west down Old Fulton Street to the Long Island Safe Deposit Company building and Bankside Boon Dock bar and restaurant.]
DATE: ca. 1974

top 5 most iconic things that whites with anxiety do

5. make it about their individual mental illness when people of colour mention white anxiety surrounding issues of race as a fundamental aspect of white psychology, as if we’re talking about individual pathologies (which they assume to be innate) rather than how the structures of whiteness work as a whole

4. “yes this makes me so anxious bc I worry that I do this” handwringing whenever people of colour try to express how racist behaviour harms them, again making it about themselves and acting like mental illness has anything to do with it

3. assume that all people of colour (especially those who are talking about racism at the moment) are neurotypical, ignoring the potential of people of colour to be complex human beings as well as the adverse effects of white supremacy on our mental health

2. “i dinfd’t mean to be racisits and nwo eveyrons’s mad at me adn i’m so anxoisu [insert threat of self-harm]”

1. “I have anxiety so I have the right to be afraid of brown and Black people and if you tell me otherwise then you’re ableist”

How To Blend Cultures (Without Making Impossible Mixes)

This is a guide specifically about fantasy worldbuilding. WWC gets a lot of questions around “I’m mixing two cultures together, how do I do that?” and this is to explain both how to do that and when you very much should not.

For starters, you should avoid blending empires with their surrounding properties, especially if there is recent political strife along those lines. This is why Japan/China/Korea (or even China/Tibet) mixes should not be done. For more information on that, take a look at Research:Large to Small Scale, Avoiding Homogenizing East Asian Cultures, & Paralleling Regions Appropriately.

Next up, mixing Greece/Rome with far-flung cultures gets a little bit eyebrow raising. Unless it was a direct trading partner/conquered property, Greek/Roman cultures do not mix with non-European cultures. The Greek empire only went to the Northern regions of India at its very peak, and that is limited to the ancient world. Rome stopped in the Middle East, so, again, you don’t have the cultural backing for a mixing of anything outside of its borders. 

Depictions of Rome and Greece in ancient literature shows other ancient cultures found them quite backwards, and were adverse to mixing with them. By many standards they were very backwards, and it’s only Europe (and, as an extension, America) that revered them to the extent they do. Asia and Africa had no reason to see them as advanced, because they made many more technological advancements than either. North America and Oceanic cultures hardly interacted with either, and had both their own technological advancements+ cultures closer by to borrow advancements from, instead. 

Outside of that, cultures are born out of the environments that made them. As a result, places with wildly dissimilar climates and resources pools will not be able to blend harmoniously unless you’re taking a modern analogue society where globalism has happened. This is plain old because resources only travel so far, and people are more likely to build culture around resources they have easy access to (even well-established trade links can lead to people re-creating things: Han purple and Egyptian blue point to an ancient trade link, but they were made with local materials processed differently).

Roman architecture exists because the Romans had access to copious amounts of concrete materials/marble and lived in the Mediterranean, which got very hot summers, heavy rains, and not a whole lot of cold. As a result they created structures that worked for this, which included open airways, pillars, easy to clean floors, shade, and ventilation. Places that lack these resources will not be able to replicate Rome.

Their resource pool was very specific to their regions, and there’s a reason Rome had the rule that anybody who did’t live like Romans were slaves: it was really hard to live like a Roman, and they wanted their slave pool as large as possible. 

Different cultures with different resources formed in wildly different ways, and might not even have anything similar to Greece or Rome. Because of this, you need to look really close at why culture developed the way it did. If it’s because they had extremely dissimilar resources pools, it’s wise to not blend the cultures (or at least not think they’ll look anything like their original cultures) 

Which brings me to value systems. Cultures put value on different things. Each culture ends up with a base philosophy for what they esteem and how they use resources, which proceeds to influence how it develops. Architecture has meaning to it. So does what colours you use in different applications. Because these things are sacred and/or practical for certain social orders. “Sacred” in cultures ends up becoming a shorthand for “this ritual helps us survive.”

There is no such thing as “aesthetic” when you get down to the root of each single item, because that aesthetic has a practical purpose. There is also no such thing as a “solely religious reason” under the same logic. Cows have become sacred in most varieties of Hinduism— because cows (and oxen) have been the main farming animal in the Indian subcontinent for millennia. They provide milk for sustenance, power for ploughing fields, and dung, which can be used as a floor polish and, when dried, a source of fuel for fire that gives off a more even heat than wood. As a single provider for crucial elements of agrarian life, their sacredness developed from their practicality. Having cows roam freely meant absolutely everyone could have access to an efficient cooking fuel.

Chinese brush painting has meaning. Jade sculpture has meaning. Pagodas and sloped roofs and gates have meaning. The philosophy, environment, history, and present circumstances of a culture is built into every. single. little. thing. about that culture, meaning you cannot just change it out.

Unless you learn the very root of culture, their values and stigmas and honours and shames, you cannot modify it accurately. Cultures survive because that was the best way to respond to the world at the time. A long-standing culture such as China’s has to be functional and incredibly well suited for the environment, otherwise it would not have survived. There is something about Chinese culture that works extraordinarily well for it to perpetuate itself, and you cannot disrespect that.

Learn the “why” of culture. Learn how it came to manifest and the reasons behind its manifestations. Study the geography and resources available to the people at hand. Know a culture so well you can explain how it works in real life and how your world’s history parallels the circumstances that created a similar culture in fantasy.

Only then will you be able to pull it off with respect.

~ Mod Lesya

I really want CW to do a BatFam live-action TV series. Like, I have this five-season structure all worked out in my head:

  • Start with Batman working with Dick Grayson. You probably want to have their partnership be a few years old because Dick’s canonically the longest running and closest to Batman of the Robins, but you can throw in cute flashback episodes showing his recruitment
  • Have Catwoman be a recurring antagonist/neutral figure throughout the series, with copious amounts of flirting.
  • Establish the character of Barbara Gordon early season 1, and give all these little hints at what she’ll become, then have her take up Batgirl season 2- sort of like what the Flash did with Cisco.
  • Bring in Bat Woman around Season 2-ish, give her a nice LGBT plotline, and have some fun with her and Batman’s mutual secret identities.
  • Have a plotline about Dick’s desire to go his own way that culminates in him taking up the identity of Nightwing. Maybe give him a spin-off if he’s popular enough?
  • Have Bruce recruit Jason Todd as the new Robin early Season 3 because he misses Dick, but make it clear Jason is much more angry/impulsive.
  • The villain of Season 3 is the Joker. Mid-season, Barbara is paralyzed from the waist down. Give her an good, respectful plot arc recovering physically and mentally that culminates in taking up the mantle of Oracle in the finale and being vital in defeating the Joker.
  • Have the Joker brutally murder Jason  a few episodes before the finale. This culminates in a harrowing conclusion where Batman must decide whether to kill the Joker or imprison him.
  • Season 3 or 4, depending on how episode spacing works out, introduce an mysterious assassin figure. At first she seems like an antagonist, but later she saves the life of a main character and introduces herself as Cassandra Cain. She’s adopted into the Bat Family and becomes the new Batgirl with Oracle’s blessing.
  • Season 4, bring in Tim Drake, and have a long plot arc where Batman doesn’t want to put anyone else at risk, until Tim manages to become Robin mid-season.
  • Give Tim have a love interest named Stephanie who’s secretive about her own family, later revealing her father’s the Cluemaster. She takes over for either Robin or Batgirl for an episode before creating her own identity as Spoiler.
  • The theme of Season 4? Parents. Parallel the shitty parenting of Steph and Cass, and have them bond over it. Put in some episodes of Batwoman and her strained relationship with her own father. Use the opportunity to emphasize the parental role Bruce has found himself in, and that after Season 3 he doesn’t want to fail his kids again.
  • Season 5′s main villains are the League of Assassins. Establish Talia Al’Ghul as an old flame of Bruce’s, and at the end of her first episode have a cliffhanger with her ten-year-old son Damian.
  • Introduce the recurring villain Red Hood, and later reveal he’s Jason Todd, resurrected by Ra’s Al Ghul via the Lazarus Pit.
  • Have Damian join the Bat Family mid season. Have Batman disappear/be killed for a bit, and Nightwing come back and take over as Batman for a few eps, with Damian taking over as Robin. Have his run as Batman contested by Jason, who views his morals as constraining and antiquated.
  • Eventually bring Bruce back, have him succeed at bringing Jason into the fold, have Catwoman finally come down on his side, and give it all an epic finale with the entire Bat Family.

Bonus points for race-blind casting (especially for all those black-haired Robins!) and copious amounts of crossovers between BatFam members and the other superhero shows.

anonymous asked:

Hello!! This may be a weird question but I too am heavily interested in birds but unlike you, I cannot draw them as well. :,^( If it's not too much work (if it is just ignore this, i don't mind), do you know of any good references or sources to learn more about birds from facts to anatomy? I know this is a pretty wide range so again, I totally understand if you can't! I just thought it was worth an ask. Thank you so much!!

i don’t really have any specific reference places but here’s some things i do. 

 drawing birds is arguably one of the hardest animals because of their feathers. unlike fat and fur that folds to the body in a way that’s usually readable to whats underneath, feathers sort of create a ‘bubble’ around the body which makes a lot of body parts indistinguishable to where one ends and another begins. so its important to always think in terms of skeletal anatomy:

birds are dinosaurs and therefore reptiles. looking at birds this way, it’s a lot easier to see their evolution.

with that in mind, say we wanna draw this dude. owls are pretty tough because their outward appearances are so deceiving.

we’ve got a neutral pose, feathers are generously surrounding most of the body so its no sweat, we don’t really know whats going on. but we can hide it. but now we want to make him move and look cool. without really knowing whats going on we might get stuck on something like this:

its always kind of stiff and frustratingly unrealistic. mostly this is because we just don’t have enough knowledge of the skeletal structure to work with. eyeballing anatomy on our first drawing might get something like the left, more than anything people aren’t generous enough with leginess of birds:

 owls do indeed have regular proportioned necks with the rest of their bodies. and their skulls are like that of any other stereotypical raptor under their mask of feathers (minus their freaky eye sockets and ears)) they can open their mouths wide just like a hawk or eagle can. it’s important to remember that birds with large wingspans do not magically lose their length when hidden. they are just conveniently folded in against their bodies.

knowing this we can try again. suddenly things seem to click in place more and have a believable-ness to them.

the rule of thumb for most birds is they have less body mass and more leg/neck than one thinks. they are lanky dinosaurs.

when we are looking at this:

we are seeing this:

with that rule, drawing birds becomes a lot less confusing. with practice you might just eyeball their feathered appearances but if not, going back to skeletal/muscle structure gives the base you need to draw convincing birds.

when it comes to specific body parts, the most challenging part for me personally have always been feet. birds with super twiggy feet are easier because one line per toe is easy to get away with. but when you get to birds with meatier feet, especially raptors, it gets difficult. my way of getting around this is to think of the actual ‘feet’ last. drawing each separate toe first gets confusing because you just find yourself trying to get them to each fit evenly together at the base of the foot. one always seems kind of skinnier or fatter than the others in my experiences, and by the time you correct it the gesture gets muddled and lost.

so i just skip that part until later, i draw talon first.

perhaps this is very unorthodox, but just like artists might square in the hands first on a human before working out the arms, i square in the talons to know where i want them before worrying how they go on exactly.

that way we have a clear gesture captured, and in my experience it is much more readable.

thats’ really all i can think of now in terms of my techniques, i hope this helps :V

10

Tent House in Waiheke Island

Having won New Zealand’s Best Spatial Design award for Residential Interiors, Chris Tate’s Tent House is a masterpiece of monochrome built with sharp lines and interesting angles. Sleeping below a tent on Waiheke Island, Chris envisioned a home with a similar triangular architectural form - simple, beautiful and playful. This idea sparked a project to build a collapsed tent house frame, and after two years of hard work, Tent House was completed.

Since the inspiration was a triangular form, this posed several engineering and architectural issues, particularly on safety as the walls were not in conventional 90-degree angles. Chris tried around 30 different options during the 2D-drawing stage to ensure the home would work structurally and functionally. “It came down to which shape looks best and what angles worked best on the site to maximize the shape. It was purely visual, followed by dissecting the design into cross-sections so the descending height walls would all fit in seamlessly and be safe for walking up to, despite the slope,” said Chris.

Follow the Source Link for images sources and more information.

PSA white people

Your mental illness does not change your privilege as a white person

Your sexual orientation does not change your privilege as a white person

Your gender does not change your privilege as a white person

Your income does not change your privilege as a white person

Your disability does not change your privilege as a white person

Your age does not change your privilege as a white person.

Your political affiliation does not change your privilege as a white person

Your religion does not change your privilege as a white person

Your privilege as a white person will stick with you, whatever your other identities are. You may face oppression in other ways, which, YES means there are other social structures that work against you. But they do not diminish your white privilege

Midheaven Signs

aries: You adopt a bold attitude towards your career. You meet a challenge and you are extremely excited and filled when you start a new project. Being self-employed gives you satisfaction.

taurus: Security counts. You need to do something tangible in your career and whatever form it is, you need to receive substantial rewards.

gemini: You need diversity in your career, and communicate your ideas.

cancer: You need a career in which you can use your intuition, connect emotionally, and provide for the safety of your family.

Leo: You need a career that has two qualities: creative opportunities, and public recognition.

Virgo: You will succeed in your career, whatever it is, because you “do your homework” and because you pay attention to detail.

Libra: You want to have a pleasant and rational career that will allow you to find the balance between your private life and your public life. According to you, the ideal would be a career in the arts. You attract people who can help you achieve your goals.

Scorpio: You are attracted by a career that offers you the opportunity to exert power or feel intensely. Once you have chosen a specific goal, you are determined to reach it.

Sagittarius: You are happiest with a career that provides you with independence, the opportunity to broaden your horizons on the mental plane, and many trips.

Capricorn: You are reliable and responsible. To maintain your optimism, you need a career that brings you a structure, regular work hours, and above all clear signs that you are progressing.

Aquarius: You take an independent and very personal attitude towards the career. The ideal career for you is exceptional and unconventional, it is something that only you can achieve.

Pisces: Compassion and / or imagination determine your career choices. You may be attracted by the assistance professions, or by a prestigious area such as music or dance. In either case, your intuition and your mediumistic abilities guide you.

Think of the creative process like architecture

When you ignore the rules of architecture, you have the freedom to make some pretty nifty structures. No conventions or forms holding you back, you can express yourself in unlimited ways.

But your buildings won’t stand more than a few meters tall, and it’s unlikely most people will be able to live in them.

Because the rules of architecture exist for a reason. They work, they’re effective in creating buildings that stand tall and can support residents.

And when you use the rules as a basis, then you can deviate from them, and create truly amazing structures that are both creative and effective as buildings.

Creativity is the same way. Unlimited creativity is great. But it won’t take you very far. Without form and structure, your creative works will likely fall short. But when you’re building off of an existing proven basis, you could create something amazing and wholly unique and creative.

10th House Planets

So, the really lovely and sweet l’il Gemini @geministereo (who you should all follow, by the way) suggested I make a post on 10th house planets. 

A lot of the interpretations I see can be hard to relate to because we can’t always identify the 10th house in ourselves, with it being public image and all. For this reason, this post isn’t about to exude the archetypes and be really radical and dramatic in what it says, but more aim to highlight the simpler parts of the planets in the 10th house which we can often overlook!

Without further ado, here are the planets in the 10th house.


Sun in the 10th house will make the individual want to feel confident and portray confidence in work and public image. They’re usually great people to have in areas dealing with the public or company image because of this. Often times they can be great people motivators too as their bright ego leaks through into their workplace and peers.

Moon in the 10th house is often associated with jobs and roles in social work or helping other people, and this is a very true and valid conclusion because the emotions of these people find a home in their career and public image. However, it isn’t just about helping other’s emotions, but also their own. They want and/or need to let their emotions out in a productive way! This can mean different things depending on the rest of the chart. It could mean letting their emotions flourish through an artistic career, or from running a personal blog where they vent their frustrations.

Mercury in the 10th house individuals would find themselves best suited in areas of work where they use their communication skills to build bridges or to guide others. For some, this may mean a job in Human Resources or Communications, and for others it could mean teaching or tutoring! They don’t need a particularly rigid work system or routine, but a layout and format is appreciated.

Venus in the 10th house wants to love what they do more so than others may do. Some people find it easy to work hard and then play hard, but Venus in 10th needs to feel like they are loving what they do in and out of work. Things don’t need to be kept in an order or routine, but they need to be clear in this individual’s view - you’ll notice their notes, blogs, or social media all seem quite neat and/or aesthetic! For a lot of Venus in 10th house people, something has to be made within their job, whether it’s art, a legal bond, or even just a smile. 

Mars in the 10th house brings passion and drive to the work place and public image. Often needing energetic or fast moving careers, they make great motivators or coaches! Sometimes, they may want to change or make something within their job in order to let out the drive of Mars. Not usually a fan of jobs where they can’t advance, Mars in the 10th house is most happy when they’ve got goals and ambitions to hit, and usually get frustrated by desk jobs unless there are enough goals and targets to stimulate them there.

Jupiter in the 10th house wants to grow and expand in their career on both a grounds of self and success. There has to be places they can go from their current role, and it’s got to make them what they feel to be a better person. Luck comes to these individuals in their careers, which helps them to achieve their goal of growing. They may not always appear to have one set career or idea because Jupiter isn’t a planet which wants one set idea, but even when they do choose to settle into a niche, it won’t be a dead end for them.

Saturn in the 10th house can make excellent accounts people, or managers, but this is not all their personality is defined by. This individual may not be interested in managing others, but may still enjoy having a form of routine or regulation within their work place. A spontaneous career gambling on luck may scare them away a little. They often function best as part of a team or image, but due to having their own good structure, can easily work independently. 

Uranus in the 10th house wants to revolutionise and change something for a living. Often found in politics, diplomacy, or charity work, they put their morals and revolutionary attitudes to work where they can see their actions causing change. They will find it incredibly hard to work in jobs where they feel morally compromised. But, Uranus in the 10th house isn’t all about making giant global impacts! These people may find themselves making smaller, more local impacts which are still just as fulfilling.

Neptune in the 10th house can struggle knowing what they want to do because of the illusions Neptune causes, but that’s okay! You don’t have to know what you want to do, and my best advice to this placement is to just go with your heart and let things work out. Neptune in the 10th house likes an air of mystery and fantasy. They can make great writers, poets, or artists of any kind if that is what the individual likes. With this placement, fantasy appears to have a link to the career, so they could well find themselves dreaming of being sci-fi writers, or fantasy directors.

Pluto in the 10th house aims to transform through their career. This can mean they go through multiple careers in their life, learning from each. They may help others transform and revive, for instance as a psychologist, too. The main essence of this placements is helping people or themselves get from point A to B, and this is often of an emotional sort. Their job, due to Pluto’s link to Scorpio, may also be of an investigative or research-based nature. 

kajuned  asked:

A very random question but in your opinion, what's the difference between plot-drive and character-driven stories?

I’ve been staring at this message in my inbox for days now, and on top of being a long-debated question regarding writing in general, I think it’s also incredibly relevant to the structure of Supernatural specifically. And because of that I’ve been half excited about and yet half dreading trying to answer this.

Not dreading in a bad way, but dreading because I know this is gonna turn into some kind of patented Mittens Uses Too Many Words To Say The Thing sort of post. Because I have FEELINGS about this. :P

Let’s start with the basics, and I’ll explain why this is a much debated thing. Seriously, just google “plot vs character driven writing” and each link you click will offer a different assessment of what this means. I mean, just speaking about Romance novels as a specific, some people would characterize them as “plot driven” and others as “character driven,” depending on your understanding of what is meant by those terms. It’s… confusing.

Because a character driven story is one which obviously HAS a plot which advances throughout the story, but it’s the character’s emotions and choices and personal growth that DRIVE the plot forward.

A plot driven story is one in which the character may also experience emotional growth and make choices and everything, but in reaction to an external plot that draws the character along in its wake.

All stories incorporate both character and plot development (hopefully! or otherwise why would we bother reading them. This reminds me of my favorite English teacher who taught a class called Literature of Changing Times. I think I’ve mentioned her before *waves hi at Mrs. Proenza if you’re out there reading this. You are awesome, btw*. First day of class when we were going over the reading list, she said, “Ha! Jokes on the admins for approving this class, because ALL literature is about changing times, and this just gives me an excuse to teach y’all my favorite books!”

That was an awesome class, because it was obvious how much she loved every book we studied, and it definitely carried through in OUR enthusiasm for the subject. She basically was the one who taught me how to be passionate about stories.)

So yes, all writing will have elements of a plot moving forward, and characters who are hopefully relatable and whose motivations we understand and/or sympathize with, and sometimes it’s hard to tell if a story is more driven by the external plot or the internal character motivations because both seem important.

Now, specifically relating to Supernatural. Taken as a whole, the series has used both character driven AND plot driven stories, sometimes simultaneously. I’ve heard one description in an old meta ages and ages ago that SPN was actually telling us two different stories based on whether you were looking at it through Sam’s perspective or Dean’s.

Short tangent to explain: Sam’s story has largely been plot driven, and that meta I mentioned above compared it to the traditional story structure of the Horror genre. An external force acts on a character, the character is forced to react, make choices based on those outside influences, and thus growth and change happens for the character. Dean’s story (aside from during the MoC arc, when Dean was literally acted on by an outside force) has largely been character driven, similar to a character in a traditional Fantasy genre story where the character is the one who goes chasing after the plot, and his emotions and choices drive that plot forward.

But it’s more complicated than that, because of course it is. :P

Obviously that’s reducing things to their absolute simplest form, but Sam’s narrative began when an outside force literally acted on him, with Azazel dripping demon blood in his mouth. That obviously drove the plot forward, setting up everything that’s happened in the entire series in the opening scenes of the pilot episode.

But Dean’s story really begins (again, in the pilot episode) because he has an emotional need for Sam to help him find their father. That ALSO drives the action of the story forward, because without Dean’s internal motivation, the rest of the plot wouldn’t have happened, either.

Using the Carver Era (s8-11), you can really see the difference between a character driven narrative and a plot driven one. See by my personal bias in the following description if you can tell which style of storytelling I personally prefer:

Early s8 began with a HUGE dose of character driven plots. Dean comes back from Purgatory without Cas and is basically pining or in mourning. Sam’s been on an extended vacation playing house with Amelia. Dean’s internal drive to “fix the plot,” i.e. find and save Kevin, drives the early part of the season while Sam feels a little resentful of being dragged away from his “normal” life.

Then Cas miraculously turns up, they find Kevin, and suddenly they’re learning about other tablets that exist in the world. In a plot-driven world, they would’ve sought out the tablets and probably destroyed them. They wouldn’t start making these huge universe-altering decisions based on the information they learn from Kevin Tran, Prophet of Chuck.

The whole Trials storyline begins as a character-driven story. It’s their united motivations (Sam and Dean), their internal desire to accomplish this thing, that gets the ball rolling. And Dean intends to be the one to carry this burden of the trials, until fate hands that burden to Sam. Once again, outside forces have turned the course of the story. So Sam is the one who again must react TO the plot. Dean spends most of the rest of s8 reacting to Sam’s reactions, supporting him through the trials, but also emotionally attaching himself to Castiel’s story.

Cas spent most of s8 in a similar narrative position to Sam, except he didn’t even realize it. He believed he was acting on his own emotional choices much of the time (turning off Angel Radio, deciding to be a hunter, and then deciding to reconnect in order to answer prayers– we see him healing a baby and generally trying to do good in the world). Yet all along, he’s being acted on by outside forces and is literally being mind-controlled. So he believed he was driving his own plot, when behind the scenes his plot was being driven for him.

At the beginning of s9, Sam is again put into a situation much like Cas’s during s8 where he BELIEVES he’s in charge of his story, while unbeknownst to him he’s actually got an angel in the driver’s seat. Sam’s being dragged along by that plot again. But it was Dean’s internal motivation that directly put him in that situation.

Finally it’s Dean’s turn to make a choice that leads to a self-sacrifice he believes is the only way to regain control of the plot (Abaddon! Must! Die!), and takes on the Mark of Cain without reading the fine print. Thus begins what we BELIEVE is an internally motivated story for Dean, because for A FREAKING YEAR the show was telling us through parallels and the narrative itself that the Mark was a curse and what we were seeing was a change INTERNAL TO DEAN. Heck, it literally turned him into a demon. He wasn’t POSSESSED by the demon, it wasn’t an outside force acting on him, it was his very own most internal soul that had been transformed.

And then round about 10.15 the narrative pulled a 180, yanked the rug out from under a year’s worth of narrative buildup of an intensely INTERNALIZED (i.e. CHARACTER DRIVEN) story for Dean and said WHOOPSIE NOPE IT’S ACTUALLY AN OUTSIDE FORCE CONTROLLING DEAN! You thought he was actually growing as a character but nope we’re taking this one step below Fuckhands McMike territory and blaming EVERYTHING that’s happened on this big scary Dark external force! The plot basically pantsed us all.

Suddenly, after two and a half years of mostly character-driven storytelling, everything shifts and everyone’s chasing after the plot again. Dean loses ALL control over the thing inside him as he’s hopelessly dragged off by the Darkness.

And then in 10.23, Dean wrests control back over his own story by literally killing Death, while Sam and Cas have set events in motion that free Dean from the Mark of Cain and release it into the world at large instead.

Now obviously a huge portion of s11 is plot driven– their reactions to having released the Darkness and their scramble to fix what they broke as it spreads across the land. But even from the start of the season, the narrative gradually shifts into a nice balance between plot and character driven stories, where the two really begin to merge together (even on a subtextual meta level).

Another interesting aspect of Supernatural is the two types of episodes– the Mytharc (which are largely plot-driven) and the MotW (which are usually one-off monster hunts with an internal plot driven structure– MUST SOLVE THE CASE AND SAVE THE PEOPLE AND KILL THE THING!– but are generally propelled by a spurt of introspection and character growth. These are the episodes where they aren’t just acting and reacting to the Big Plot Things, but actually experience growth and change themselves).

And this is why I LOVE s12. It’s almost entirely character driven, even with the overarching plots. The main focus isn’t so much the motives of the Bad Guys and our Intrepid Heroes trying to save the world from them. It’s about the characters own personal emotional growth, how their choices affect the narrative (and yes, even Sam’s choice to work with the MoL is really a CHOICE and not something he was compelled by the plot to choose. His personal internal desires led him to that choice, and are now leading him AWAY from that choice, but it’s still been a real choice for him. Same with Cas and the choices he’s been making, and even CROWLEY, in choosing not to lock up Lucifer properly (or just kill him already ffs).

Dean is at the center of all of this, acting as that strange force of balance he’d achieved in 11.23. He’s not so much driving the story with his emotional choices, but sitting at a weird central axis while the story takes place all around him. He’s pulling a string here and there and waiting to see what budges.

I LOVE THIS. It’s glorious chaos, and I feel like Dean, sitting all zen-like in the middle of a huge unraveling sweater.

Okay, I confess. I don’t necessarily prefer one style of storytelling over the other (though I am a Dean girl, so I guess I probably do prefer a character driven story… and even Cas’s story has long been about his acquisition and proper application of Free Will, learning about humanity and making choices for himself, so while he’s experienced huge swaths of character development and growth it’s not entirely been character driven growth…). And I adore Supernatural’s complicated blend of the two.

I just really hated the bait and switch of late s10. You know that gif of Bart Simpson where he’s playing the video frame by frame and says something like, “you can pinpoint the exact second his heart rips in half?” Yeah. it’s like in 10.15 there’s a record scratch and suddenly we’re watching the freaking Stynes grab the plot by the short and curlies and yanking it in an entirely unforeseen direction. Like, out of left field. Like they picked up Baby off a coastal highway and plonked her down in a muddy field to spin her wheels, jarring. That’s what they did with the narrative.

After 10.23, once the plot had been suitably yanked around where they wanted it, the narrative structure AND the plot itself became about finding another way, a better way, a balanced and unified way. And since then it’s largely stayed on track.

How did I turn a simple question into this? It’s who I am as a person. I hope that’s okay. :P

Autobots’ Military Structure

EXPLAINED

For Generation One, at least. The Autobots do seem to follow a strict military structure. With references to officers, special operations units, intelligence, as well as various specialist in their fields. 

I am going to attempt to explain how this structure works and how many of the top ranking Autobots fall into and their actual positions other than the generic “officer” title. 

Let’s start from the bottom and work our way up.

Enlisted personnel: E1 - E6

These would be your more basic soldiers. You’re “frontliner” if you will. These are the ranks where most of the grunt work comes from. They often have no say in the command they are assigned and are strictly there to follow orders and do their job. Not to say there is no authority within these position, but they are the most common. 

E1s are the fresh from bootcamp soldiers. Which Grimlock and his team would be. Making them the lowest ranking Autobots right next to the Aerialbots. Though with their own unique cybertronian military structure, the Aerialbots’ gestalt leader would likely have been advanced to that of an E6, without the usual preamble of time in rank and qualification tests. Same with the Dinobots’ Grimlock. As an E6 is typically put in charge of small groups, squadrons or units. One step below and actual Chief/Gunnery Sargeant. Which we will get to next.

Enlisted personnel: E7 - E9

These are your Chiefs/First Sergeants/Master Gunnery Sergeant/Marines have too many names for the same rank. They are held in high regard and are positions of authority. They are often tasked with the real work of the . Making decisions and commanding the army on a more personal level than that of an officer. They take a direct role with the lower enlisted personnel. 

 It also explains why a seasoned veteran like Kup would take direction from someone as seemingly inexperienced as Hot Rod. As while a Master Chief/Master Gunnery Sergeant ( E9 ) is one of the most respected and revered of ranks. As they are titles earned by only the best of the best and only after putting in many, many years of service. Even a fresh to the service Ensign would outrank him. As all officers outranks all enlisted personnel regardless of time spent serving.

Also, yes Bumblebee is a Chief. 

Warrant Officers: W1 - W5

Warrant officers are rare, as it it more difficult to become a Warrant Officer than any other rank. Barring that of the highest officer ranks. They do not hold actual sway over the direction the army goes unless it pertains to their own specialization.  Within the army itself, Warrant Officers are highly respected and revered for their skill. 

They are subject experts in their chosen field. No one knows more than they do about their particular topic. With Ironhide, it would be weapons. Meaning he is the point of reference for all things involving weaponry within the Autobot army. The same would be for Wheeljack within the scientific side of the war effort. Blaster for communications, etc. This explains that while they obviously hold authority and their opinions are so highly regarded by the Prime. While they don’t hold an actual command over the army as a whole. Though this does vary for cybertronians. As Ironhide has been placed in charge due to the high death rate of the Autobot army officers and there being a lack of qualified officers to fill a command role.

Officers: O1 - O4

These would be the Junior Officers. Your Ensigns to your Lieutenant Commanders. Not much experience is needed for theses ranks and they joined by way of contract and specialized schooling. This is not to say those who have these ranks are to be disrespected. They hold authority over even the most senior of enlisted soldiers. They also can be appointed positions of higher authority than their rank would typically allow. Depending on skill set and how they present themselves as an asset to the command they are assigned.


Officers: O5 - O6

Your Captains and Commanders. Captain does not automatically mean they are in charge of a ship. They hold that capability, but do not always act as the XO (Executive Officer) of a vessel. These are the second rarest next to Warrant Officers. Usually, they are the highest ranking at a command. With the exception of a Flag Ship, which the Ark arguably is. The hold the utmost Authority over a command. With Ratchet this would be the medbay of the Ark. Though with within the medical field reaching such a high rank is rare, meaning he would be the point of contact and set standards as far as all medbays within the army are to uphold. 

Officers: O7 - O11

The leaders. Admirals. Though with cybertronian variants of the term. They take ultimate responsibility over the entire army. Their orders are not questioned and their authority absolute. With Fleet Admiral (O11) being the rank of Prime. Giving Optimus Prime a special kind of authority, though only during times of war. Where their call is the ultimate call, even over other Admiral’s. 

Elita-1 would be a Four Star Admiral. Giving her command over the war effort still ongoing on Cybertron. Then there is Prowl and Jazz, who fall in the middle. With Prowl being a three star and Jazz either two or one. This would make them report and be accountable to none other except Optimus Prime, as they are part of the Ark crew and the command on earth. However were they to be reassigned to Cybertron, it would still be Optimus Prime, but also Elita-1 right after him. 

Special Warfare Combatant-craft Crewmen: S.W.C.C

The all-stars. Especially the Wreckers, which could be equated to that of a Navy Seal. So when they have the lower ranked bots excited for the Wreckers, treating them like celebrities. It’s actually a fairly accurate representation. These are the soldiers with the strongest wills and best skill sets to carry out a mission. They still have to adhere to rank, same as the enlisted soldiers, but they are given their own specific commander. And when an enlisted soldier meets one, even if it’s only for a few minutes, it’s all that soldier will talk about for the next several weeks. (Not an exaggeration)

Then you have the HUMINT agents, the ones who gather the intelligence and spy. Though the army wouldn’t actually call it spying. Though they cybertronian equivalent would likely be called CYBINT. As this stands for cybertronian intelligence gathering. Meaning they get up close and personal with the enemy. Their identities are often not known. Though even an agent with a blown cover can still be useful. Especially if they have the unique ability to become invisible or create holograms.


There. 

Now, if there are any questions regarding this, mun is free to answer them. This wasn’t overly detailed, as there are special nuances to each rank, within that rank. Such as rates. Which seem cybertronians seem to differentiate from conventional norms on that front. There is no “science” rate. Though the officer’s positions being mostly political outside times of war they got spot on.

youtube

D-printed ovaries allow infertile mice to give birth

Infertile mice have given birth to healthy pups after having their fertility restored with ovary implants made with a 3D printer.

Researchers created the synthetic ovaries by printing porous scaffolds from a gelatin ink and filling them with follicles, the tiny, fluid-holding sacs that contain immature egg cells.

In tests on mice that had one ovary surgically removed, scientists found that the implants hooked up to the blood supply within a week and went on to release eggs naturally through the pores built into the gelatin structures.

The work marks a step towards making artificial ovaries for young women whose reproductive systems have been damaged by cancer treatments, leaving them infertile or with hormone imbalances that require them to take regular hormone-boosting drugs.

“Our hope is that one day this ovarian bioprosthesis is really the ovary of the future,” said Teresa Woodruff at Northwestern University in Chicago. “The goal of the project is to be able to restore fertility and endocrine health to young cancer patients who have been sterilised by their cancer treatment.”

  • right-winger: leftist pinkos just want to redistribute the wealth and expand the size of government!!
  • an actual leftist: actually those are short-term solutions proposed only as long as capitalism is a thing. as long as an elite class hierarchically controls the means of production and sources of wealth, higher taxation on the wealthy and more middleman government programs/regulations will be necessary. in the transition from capitalism to socialism, we do favor large-scale wealth redistribution, but from there we want the entire economic framework changed to one involving democratic job complexes and production for human need rather than for the profit of the elite class; at that point, "big government" for the sake of redistribution and regulation will no longer be necessary because the system as a whole would actually be structured to work for the people rather than just mostly elites, and thus egalitarianism and oversight by the people for the people would be written into the economy's genetic makeup.
  • right-winger: leftist pinkos are always trying to take away our guns!!
  • an actual leftist: actually many of us support the inalienable right of self-defense for the oppressed against their oppressors. guns and gun culture are incredibly dangerous when linked with reactionary ideals, which is why we want cops, violent patriarchs, and fascists disarmed. in imperialist white supremacist heteropatriarchal capitalism, the oppressors should relinquish their guns first.
  • right-winger: leftist pinkos don't want people to keep the product of their labor!!
  • an actual leftist: actually we want a system where people are better able to retain the product of their labor; if you work for a boss in a capitalist firm (i.e. most people) the grand majority of your labor product belongs to the boss and you have no say over what happens with it or with production as a whole.
  • right-winger: leftist pinkos hate freedom!!
  • an actual leftist: actually we want more freedom for the average person, in the sense that we want all people to have influence over and access to the things that involve them and the things they need. flat workplace democracy is more conducive to human freedom than vertical workplace autocracy. reduced working hours that arise from automation and democratic production-for-need are more conducive to human freedom than long hours of exploited labor for the benefit of capitalists.
  • right-winger: .....
  • right-winger: .....
  • right-winger: i'm gonna pretend i didn't hear any of that.
some study tips for language learners

- taking notes in a non-language class? spice ‘em up with some words or even whole phrases from vocabulary you’ve retained while studying your current focus language. this is especially helpful if you’ve memorised numbers, colors, etc. it gives you an opportunity to apply your knowledge and - i’ve noticed - also increases how much of the material you will take and keep in both in the first writing and in subsequent rereadings/reviews. remember- only use vocab you understand, no google translate or x-to-x dictionaries or using things you learned in french class last period!!! using vocab that’s completely new to you will only take more time to read over and understand!

- literally fucking immerse yourself in the fluent/native speaker online community. do you like asdfmovies? watch the italian fandubs. do you enjoy horror movies? search for french transcriptions. fanfic written in spanish. anime youtubers who are native polish speakers. POETRY IN WELSH. i know some of these might not exist (please link me to some polish anime youtubers), but really- look for anything (ANYTHING) that forces you to increase you translation speed and understand how grammar and sentence structure works. 

- try writing a diary entry in that language or converting one in your native language ONLY !!ONLY!! IF YOU ARE READY/ AT A INTERMEDIATE-FLUENT LEVEL SERIOUSYL I TRIED THIS WHEN I HAD JUST STARTED LEARNING ITALIAN AND IT FUCKED ME UP. or maybe a poem or word art or a graphic? write a small speech and pratice it in the mirror. name your plant or fish or rock after a pretty word. 

- ahhh honestly you’re doing so well! whatever language(s) you’re working on i’m so fuckign proud of you?? good job!!! :)

“The way Aloha, Scooby-Doo!’s script handles the first clash with the monsters is... interesting.”

Carl the Animator: “Why? Something wrong with it?”

Ted the Animator: “It just throws the monsters out randomly, right at the beginning! There’s no buildup, no tension… I mean, just compare it to the original Scooby-Doo episodes.”

Carl the Animator: “Oh c’mon, they were hardly screenwriting masterpieces themselves.”

Ted the Animator: “Well, yeah, sure… I’m not saying the structures were genius works of fine art or anything, but they worked. They were simple and cheesy, but understood how to build atmosphere and make things creepy.”

Carl the Animator: “True that… the astronaut skull/ghost/skost episode always unnerved me, even as I drew it.”

Ted the Animator: “…wait, did you just say ‘true that’?”

Carl the Animator: “No.”

Ted the Animator: “…anyway. Where were we?”

Carl the Animator: “Monsters. Scripts. Excitement!”

Ted the Animator: “Right. Those old shows needed to be tame enough to not give kids nightmares, but yet they still knew how to create a nice tension to the story. Proper pacing, an ominous tone, and a creepy buildup are what make y-

Carl the Animator:OOH! Like the second Wallace and Gromit with the robot pants! It super freaked me out as a kid.”

Ted the Animator: “They’re trousers, thank you very much, but that’s actually a great example.”

Carl the Animator: “You know it.”

Ted the Animator: “The antagonist is a freakin’ penguin, but there’s always this captivating sense of forebode as the story builds, and as the audience uncovers the mystery. It never plays its hand too early.”

Carl the Animator: “Well said, Ted–… oh, that rhymed.”

Ted the Animator: “Thanks.”

Carl the Animator: “So… compared to all that, how does Aloha, Scooby-Doo! do the big monster reveal?”

Ted the Animator: “A bunch of characters that we barely know surf a bit, complain… and then the monsters all run at them 3 minutes 17 seconds into the movie.

Carl the Animator: “…oh.”

Ted the Animator: “Yeah.”

Carl the Animator: “Well, then. Great, I was in the middle of animating that scene and hopin’ it was gonna be cool, but I guess not.”

Ted the Animator: “Sorry to burst your proverbial bubble.”

Carl the Animator: “Sheesh. After that, I’m not even gonna bother drawing in the mouth when it jumps at the camera.”

Ted the Animator: “That’s… that’s an odd stand to take, but y’know what? I support you for taking it.”

Carl the Animator: “Thank you, Ted… if we don’t fight for artistic quality in cheap direct-to-DVD kids movies, who will?

6

today has been a good day so far and i’m feeling it