Christmas in July: Isaac being pouty because Christmas in July just feels wrong, because it is hot so he can't wear the Rudolph sweater Stiles bought for him and there is no snow so he can't throw snowball at Scott and it's too hot to drink hot chocolate. So Derek decided to treat the pack to Australia, where the whether will be cold in July and Isaac wear the Rudolph sweater and a scarf on their flight to Aussie and Derek let him to have the window seat - Z
Aww, so sweet!
(Being from Melbourne, Australia, I can confirm it is bloody cold! But, sadly, no snow this year where I live.)
G'day, Evie! Just a question: Have you moved here (Australia) to turn over a new leaf, or did you just decided to move here permamently.
Ehhh… I was forced to move back here.
My family and are Australians, but because of my parents work, we moved round a lot. And in our last few years being in the UK, we were forced to sell our house as the bank fudged us over. So we didn’t have much choice.
My parents always wanted to come back and live here permanently. Personally, I don’t know what I’m doing.
I want to move back to the uk, but I won’t be doing that anytime soon because of university and my family.
Honestly if I could leave today I would, but it’s not possible right now.. :/
I'm very much agaisnt all religions and I can't stand seeing 6 year olds covered in burkas. but everytime I try to educate muslim women on how the hijab is a symbol of oppression, they hit me with ´ít´s my choice´´. do they fail to realize that they've been brought up by believing it is right therefore it naturally becomes their ´´choice´´. I just dont know how to express myself to them so that they'll understand the meaning behind the hijab. it´s complete BS.
I was in Australia last year and when I was there, the news was running a big hysterical story re “Islamophobia” because a Muslim father was frowned upon for wrapping the heads up of his six year old daughters whenever he would take them outside. It’s sick.
I have received messages from apologists, educating me with assertions that being so afraid for a non-Muslim or a man to see the hair that grows on your head that you have to wrap yourself up in a black sheet everywhere you go is somehow an empowering feminist cause. Wearing these veils is not a feminist cause, it does not empower women, it only empowers Islam.
I wonder how women who fled countries that require them to cover up feel about supposed women’s movements encouraging women to wear hijabs? It was only last year when women in Iran were disfigured and blinded in acid attacks for daring to contravene the country’s strict hijab code. Their councils employ moral police armed with long canes who can whip women for showing too much hair or skin and are flogged publicly in the city square.
Shouldn’t we stand with disempowered and disfigured women in Islamic countries across the world instead of celebrating an instrument that is used in their complete and total oppression? For many the hijab, along with the dehumanizing niqab and burqa, are symbols of oppression, not some national costume to be worn for shits and giggles.
The apologists say it is their choice, but that is only because they have been given that freedom of choice under Western democracy. It would stop being a choice the moment they stepped into a country where the fundamentals of their own religion was the law. They say it is their choice but dig a little deeper and their reasons are all the same. The moment you realize they choose to wear it not for cultural or fashion purposes but because they believe it will please Allah and save them from eternal hellfire, the word ‘choice’ all of a sudden becomes a little misleading.
They do not only do it to please Allah, though. The veil has more to do with a set of Islamist mores. The Islamists wish to say: “We Muslims are different from the West. We don’t look like you, or act like you. We are not sluts. We are not dirty. We are our own community within your community.” The Islamists thrive on this, the idea of Muslims being a society-within-a-society. If they invent religious grounds to persuade them to dress differently, so much the better. It suits their sectarian agenda.
The veil deliberately marks women as private and restricted property, non-persons. It sets women apart from men and apart from the world, it restrains them, confines them, grooms them for docility. It is the mark of a kind of segregation, not of a race but of a sex. Women are second class citizens under Islam and being expected and forced into wearing veils around their heads proves it, along with many other examples such as their testimony being half of a man’s and not being allowed to pray infront of men. Even in the most moderate Muslim countries such as Turkey, women are segregated from men, they have huge dividing walls women are forced to stay behind.
Indeed some argue that far from being a universal symbol of subjugation, the hijab and even the face covering niqab and burqa are empowering. I am sorry, ladies, but I’m not buying it. I’ve seen first-hand the pressure on girls to obey their devout parents as well as their community’s wishes in regard to how they dress. Even when you do have the choice, that pressure to conform can be overwhelming. You risk not only being judged, denounced and reviled but completely ostracised.
The unpalatable truth is that the root cause of most of the remaining world’s entrenched misogyny today is Islam and it manifests itself in a variety of ways especially including the requirement for women to cover up. This is not something to be celebrated or emulated. Celebrating diversity shouldn’t mean celebrating young girls wrapping their heads up in fear that showing their hair will bring shame and hellfire upon them. It shouldn’t mean kicking the guts of the many women who have given their lives to protest against wearing it.
Only now does the West seem to have worked out what has been going on. Rules preventing people from covering their heads and faces can and indeed must be imposed when any nation’s social cohesion is threatened. If they want to turn their face against the general public, if they don’t want to integrate or be part of a cohesive society, then what the hell are they doing here? It is not racist or Islamophobic as extremists would have us believe to be honest about the oppression attached to the veil and refusing to accept it is a feminist act of empowerment. It is a scam by Islamists such Linda Sarsour to make their dream of the West being run by Sharia law a little easier to swallow.
80% of times anyone tries to talk to me about any place in australia or any aspect of australian culture i’m like listen i’ve technically lived here for like 15 years but i have no idea what the fuck you’re talking about i’m sorry
Looking at the tangle prices in the links you posted for australia, Ive never fully grasped how expensive things are for you. D:
It’s the problem of living in a country with a (comparatively) small population.
[TL;DR: Australia has a much higher minimum wage, which results in
much higher prices for goods and services that aren’t subsidized by the
government. This isn’t such a terrible thing, but having to pay high
shipping costs on everything is what really hurts us, in my opinion (as a toy collector and stim toy buyer who has been buying things online for about fifteen years).]
Don’t get me wrong - we have a much higher minimum income than US folks (which I’ll use as the comparison point for ease of conversation). A lot of that is countered by the fact that we also have a much higher cost of living than US folks. In many ways it’s better here (health care, education, social protections) but in one of the ways it’s worse is the cost of food, games, clothes, toys. Things are usually double or more than double the US cost, depending on the item. Part of this is due to differences in the dollar; part of this is due to the cost of importing things; part of this is because a smaller market means fewer sales so things have to be priced higher to make the same amount of profit (and this is why not everything even makes it to Australia); and part of this is because it’s the norm so this stuff isn’t questioned by the consumer base.
Additionally, most of our goods and services contain a 10% GST (goods and services tax) built into the item cost; we don’t pay taxes on top. I know that can make things a little less expensive when compared to US purchases, depending on the kinds of local taxes added on top of the item price.
(This isn’t an Australia-exclusive problem, though. Not even close. Many European countries also suffer the same difficulty of paying double or triple locally what an item costs in the US, and I suspect many places in the world endure this as well.. Additionally, since buying from overseas became prominent in the last fifteen years, the difference has decreased some. Items aren’t quite as ridiculously overpriced as they used to be.)
This actually wouldn’t be so bad on its own, because, like I said, higher minimum income. Where it gets rough is either the internal shipping costs or the need to import from overseas (because so many of the cool things marketed for a US-audience don’t quite make it over here - only items that sell really well tend to be accessible to us, save for specialist online stores). We have less ability to walk into a store and find things (although that has also improved in the last ten years; the ability to see what’s going on in another country via online interactions has resulted in stores upping their game to order in “trendy” items like spinners more quickly) and that necessitates shipping.
Australia Post has a long and wonderful (sarcasm) history of making any kind of online purchasing ridiculous, and this is where it hurts part-time-working and disabled folks, because our minimum income covers the doubled-cost of the item, but it doesn’t really cover paying the item cost again or more to ship it. (Again, because the population is smaller, prices need to be higher to make the same kind of profit, and Australia Post has been struggling in various ways for a long time.) The advent of online buying has just made shipping more expensive, not less, and it can be cheaper to ship from the US to Australia, depending on the item, than it is to ship within Australia. Absurd, right?
It’s why many Aussies (because I know I’m not the only one) are so enthralled with free shipping eBay and Banggood listings. Free shipping makes such a difference! It’s also why I talk so much about offline sources, because I know I can’t afford to pay shipping, especially for inexpensive stim toys.
Thank you, anon. Most Aussies are dealing with the knowledge of the different cost prices; we see it every time we go online. It’s a harder thing for US folks in particular to see, as most listings are in USD and directed at US consumers. So I really do appreciate people who take the time to think about how different the buying experience is in other countries, and understand why we complain about shipping and Australia Post and the prices of things. (I really can’t write a resource post by an Aussie asker without discussing this.) I suspect that my constant talking about these sorts of things can get tiresome for some of my followers, but it’s the reality for many international stimmers, and I appreciate folks’ patience and understanding.
this is actually a small sub branch of botany thats been growing and gaining some recognition in the past 5 years or so called plant cognition! we’ve been thinking about if plants can possibly be intelligent to any degree for centuries, but the main paper that started up this huge discussion in the modern era was one called Experience Teaches Plants to Learn Faster and Forget Slower in Environments Where It Matters by Monica Gagliano, a plant researcher in Australia who specializes in it. because the results indicated that plants were possible of learning and retaining information in a kind of memory in response to environmental changes, it received a lot of backlash and denial- generally in science, that kind of intelligent reaction to an organism’s environment is a good indicator of cognitive behavior in the organism. it got rejected by 10 different journals before being published in 2014.
the experiment worked like this. i’ve talked before about mimosa pudica, a tropical plant that curls its leaves back when touched (they go back to normal in a few minutes):
this is to help deter predators among other things. but in this experiment, Gagliano used it as an indicator of stimulus and to test cognitive function. It’s well known that pudica has a rudimentary nervous system that can even be temporarily inhibited using anesthetics (just like ours can!). she hooked up a ton of these plants in pots to identical rail systems that allowed them to be lightly dropped in an identical way, juuuuust heavy enough to trigger the stimulus so all the leaves drop down when they hit the bottom (a piece of foam so they wouldn’t actually hurt the plants). every time the plants would be dropped, they would close up.
but after the plants were dropped about 60 times each, they stopped responding to the drop.
they remembered that no harm was coming from this actionand decided that it was against their best interests to keep expending energy closing their leaves. they 200% learned to stop.
she decided to test it further. she put some of the plants in a shaker and let them receive a more jarring response; the plants closed up as usual. then, she put them back in the droppers and dropped them again. they didn’t close up. they had remembered that response. this dispels the obvious rebuttal to this experiment of the plants just being tired; they still closed up when stimulated differently.
they just chose not to close up when they hit a stimulus they remembered.
it turns out that not only could they remember to keep their leaves open when dropped on the apparatus, but they remembered after28 days when she kept testing it!! apparently by the end of the experiment, all the plants had decided to keep their leaves open when dropped!!!!
how do they do this?? we literally dont know. they have no central brain, only a basic nervous system. can other plants do this???
well, adding onto that, venus fly traps can count! like. they have three hairs inside their traps, and all three must be touched within 20 seconds for the trap to close. once closed, those three trigger hairs must continue to be stimulated by thrashing prey, or the trap will reopen.
so yeah like. basically ‘are they sentient’: apparently to an extent???? we dont know exactly why or how but they are??? maybe???? sort of????? at least some of them are?? but they dont have a brain so everyones like????????????????????? maybe its through a signaling network????????????????? but like how would that even work?????????
plant consciousness is still new enough to be dismissed as crazy by a lot of biologists but like. the evidence is there. we don’t know a whole lot and its clearly a radically different kind of intelligence than we know in animals, but it’s there and we 200% dont know how it works yet or even the full extent of how plants use this intelligence (for example: does a redwood have the same intelligence as a venus fly trap?? how does it learn things and use that knowledge???)
national geographic wrote an awesome article visualizing the experiment here if you want to read more!
Ugh. Reading a whole lot of ‘queer history’ posts on Tumblr that are exclusively North American. Elsewhere in the world, we have a different history, a different lexicon and different experiences. I have a different experience of coming out 21 years ago than someone in the USA would. Our politics were slightly different here, and still are.
For example ‘queer’ is just a mainstream word here in Australia. Perhaps some very old people (I’m thinking my late grandma) may have used it to mean ‘strange’, but I only ever heard the word referring to people who weren’t of mainstream sexes, sexualities or genders. The first time I heard that it was a slur was when a teenager demanded that I stop using ‘a slur’ to identify myself on my own Tumblr.
I know Tumblr has a lot of US folks on it, but I think it’s important to remember that the USA is just one country, there are nearly 200 others. Your history is not everyone’s history. Your experience is not everyone’s experience. I will be respectful of your experiences where appropriate, but you also need to be respectful of mine. And that includes not trying to make me ashamed of the word that I use as my identity for any reason.
I’m definitely gravitating towards roles with substance, and roles that feel honest. Having played a supernatural character for nearly 10 years, I’m excited to try and focus on smaller scale, grounded projects. Projects that hopefully can inspire and start conversations, and projects that convey humans as what they are: complicated, flawed, resistant.
koalas are the worst mammal on earth and they’re right next to sunfish for being the most useless animal ever
they have the smallest brain-to-body-weight ratio in any terrestrial mammal, in fact their brain’s surface is smooth rather than rigid, which means their brain’s development is behind by millions of years compared to the rest of mammals
they only eat eucalyptus leaves, which is as nutritious as celery and is poisonous, and have to eat 2,000 a day in order to not starve to death. They refuse to eat any other flora, and if you place leaves that have been detached from a tree on a plate, they will refuse to eat them because they do not identify them as eucalyptus leaves
they contribute to environmental damage in Australia, as they will devour whole trees in an area, which contributes to brushfires by creating dead dry plants and ecological collapse as they deprive insects of food
because of their primitive brains, they lose balance a lot and end up falling out of trees and killing themselves, which has lead to the Australian “drop bear” myth that’s used to scare tourists
90% of the entire species has chlamydia, and so they all end up incontinent and dying in their own shit and piss after they either starve themselves from devouring an entire area’s supply of eucalyptus leaves, falling to their deaths, or brushfires they help cause
female koalas cannot produce milk needed to feed their young, so instead their young get their nutrition from scooping the mother’s shit from their asses with their clawed hands and eating it
they sound like this:
these things are such an evolutionary dead end I have no fucking clue how they’re still living, especially in a place as inhospitable as Australia
Can you imagine aliens trying to figure out fireworks? Humans set off bombs for aesthetic. That’s how we celebrate certain holidays, by setting off bombs that hurt our ears and dazzle our eyes, because we think they’re pretty.
“What is this ‘New Year’s Day, Brett?”
“Well, it’s the end of our solar year, marking when the earth has traveled all the way around the sun.”
“You humans are odd. That is nothing to celebrate. It happens by nature.”
“We think it’s pretty special. Anyway, we get together with friends, count down the hours to the new year and set off fireworks-”
“What are fireworks?”
“Pyrotechnics, um, bombs. They explode in the air. They’re pretty harmless if you handle them properly-”
“You set off BOMBS to celebrate the fact that your planet has circled your star???”
“Um, yeah, it sounds funny when you say it like that but yeah.”
With the approach of the 4th of July, and my own town’s weekend fireworks display occurring in view of my window as I write this, I got to thinking.
Fireworks would be BAFFLING to an alien races.
I’m not sure which would be worse. Being taken by surprise by the bright flashes and loud cracks and pops in the sky, panicking because those could only be the first signs of a deadly attack, complete with shells whistling through the air, or seeing people buying the things by the truckload, not just for professional use, but to simply light off in their back yard.
“Human-Steve, what are "Fireworks”? I see places of business opening out of nowhere with no information or advertisements beyond the single word.“
"Well, they’re.. Hmm.. I guess you’d call them toys, or maybe single-use decorations? They make bright lights in a bunch of different colors, and loud noises, and we use them to celebrate important events.”
The alien nodded, a gesture it had learned meant understanding. "Ah, I see. Digitally projected entertainment. We have similar devices on our world, though-“
Steve held up a hand, shaking his head. "Digital? No, no, no,” he chuckled. "They’re little explosives. Gunpowder packed with different kinds of material to burn in different colors when we launch them.“
"Ex- explosives?” The alien wringed two of its three pairs of hands, putting the other pair on the sides of its head. "Surely you jest! I saw families, children purchasing these fireworks!“
"Nah, they’re harmless. I mean, every year there’s an idiot or two that blows his hand off or sets his hair on fire, but I mean, they’re usually doing something stupid to begin with.”
The alien has no reply to this. What reply could there possibly be?