The protests made it onto my street today. I heard the shouts and chants from inside my office, so I grabbed my camera and ran out to the street to see what was happening.

It seemed like a relatively small group, but there were so many young faces in that crowd. They chanted and held signs, but they also hugged, teased, and socialized with each other like kids always do. It felt weird to see the frustration of protest and the behaviors of everyday life alongside each other.

Then, one of my junior skaters spotted me taking photos, and ran up to me to say hello. I've only had a couple of practices with the team so far, so it feels a bit funny to call them "my" juniors, heh. But, even though I've only just started to get to know this teen, I couldn't have been prouder of her.

The group passed by quickly, so she ran off, and I called after her to stay safe. I later learned that it was a group of students from Portland Public Schools, so hopefully that fact will keep them safer.

I'm proud of the young people of my city--they're paying attention, and they're not content to sit by in apathy. But I'm afraid for them, too. I know their future hangs in the balance.

SLG_7483_web
batskeets: (j)
I don't speak on this often at any length, because I can only truly speak to my own experience... which isn't exactly extensive, given that I'm a ciswoman. And, as with many things, I'd rather listen and understand, than try to speculate.

In short: I've been the years-long partner to someone who began transitioning after our relationship ended. I've also been the (long-distance) support system during a good friend's transition, when they had nowhere else to turn. None of this is to say that I haven't made mistakes--I certainly made some of the most hurtful mistakes of my life with the former--but I endeavor to be an ally to the best of my ability. I understand so much more now than I did when I first encountered a transperson.

I've also seen more than one friend, since then, be absolutely transformed by their transition. It's not because of what's on the outside, but because of how it makes them feel. However they choose to present, they are now more themselves than they've ever been, and they absolutely radiate because of it. I can't think of a single person who would dare describe transitioning as "easy," but when I see the brightness in their spirits that comes with it, I know why it's worth the struggle.

Things like what John Oliver discusses below are just part of what make it such a struggle, and it's heartening to see someone at this level of prominence trying to educate the world at large about this. It's a big freaking deal. There are too many people who are more interested in satisfying their own curiosity, or labeling and shaming those around them, instead of simply trying to understand.

I know there are those who'll say that it's not "normal," or that it's a mental condition, or that god or whoever planned things to be this way, but guess what? I DON'T CARE. No matter how different a group of people may be from you, none of these things give you license to be cruel to them, or to take away their right to happiness. You cannot possibly know someone else's experience--the environments we're born into are vastly different, and we don't all have the same resources. The influences surrounding us are varying and, early in our lives, are not even something we can control. The way our brains are wired is unique for every. Single. PERSON. on this godforsaken rock. You can't know what they feel, or what they've experienced. And you, Mr.-or-Ms. The-Lord-Works-In-Mysterious-Ways, definitely can't know what God's Supposed Plan is.

Humans have a hard time admitting it when they don't know something, but in this one instance, let's at least try to accept that we have a lot left to learn. And then, keep listening.

So, eh, I'm not a team skater yet. But, then again, a lot of people aren't. Less than half of the available roster spots were filled, in fact--which came to a surprise to practically everyone, it seems--and it's pretty likely that there'll be a special/emergency draft before the next official one in February.

It's not hopeless by any stretch. It's just, y'know, not happening today. Consolatory pints have been consumed, wounds have been licked, and tomorrow morning, it'll be time to go out there and kill it all over again.

Booyah. \m/

----

In other news, I paid a visit to Occupy Portland yesterday. I'm still not sure what I think, but I blogged a little and posted photos.

Also: TONIGHT IS FIRST FRIDAY YOU GUYS SRSLY. I hope some of you can make it.
Over the weekend, I was in Seattle to lend a hand with some wedding photography, and I thought it'd be fun to take a bit of extra time to hang out and see a fwe sights. I didn't have a ton of time, but I did get to visit Gasworks Park on Monday morning, and we also hit up Volunteer Park--the conservatory was closed, unfortunately--which was right by the cemetery where Bruce Lee is buried. After spending more than 7 years of my life dedicated to practicing Wushu, Bruce Lee is especially legendary for me, so I had to take a moment and pay homage to him.

We walked through the cemetery until we found the location of his headstone, and while I waited for a few other folks in front of us to take their turn, I thought about how I wanted to document the occasion. As a dedicated martial artist, a moment like this was a pretty huge deal, and since I already had my camera out for shooting at the parks we'd been to, taking a photo seemed to make perfect sense, but something about it was unsettling for me.

Then, I saw the guy ahead of me ask his friend to take a photo of him while he posed next to the grave site, and I realized: I don't want to be that guy. I'd done photoshoots near cemeteries once or twice before, at the request of portrait clients, and the sense of age and history has always been interesting to me. But, the idea of posing with or even just taking a photo of a specific grave didn't feel like the right way to pay my respects to anyone, much less somebody who'd had such a massive impact on the martial arts community.

When my turn came around, I went up to the headstone, and silently took everything in. We marveled at how young Bruce and Brandon Lee had both been when they died, but after a couple minutes of mostly-wordless observance, we simply moved on and left in search of other sights. So, yeah. It was a momentous occasion for me, and the picture in my mind is enough to be worth remembering. Sometimes, you have to choose your moment, and I chose to hold that one with brain matter instead of pixels.

Instead, here are a couple of photos from other spots. It wasn't the absolute best time of day for landscape-y photos, but Gasworks Park is definitely a photographer's wet dream:



And, seriously? This HAS to be a TIE Fighter. Am I right? ;)

batskeets: (finger)
Originally posted by [info]lavenderfrost at ...WTF.

Well, there goes my good mood for the day.

NYTimes, the bastion of quality reporting, reported on the gang-rape of an 11 year-old girl in Texas  that's led to charges against 18 high-school boys so far - all well and good so far, right?  Shit like this NEEDS publicity to raise awareness. 

Only problem is, they repeated - without refutation or critical commentary - the claims that the girl brought the rape on herself because of the way she was dressed.

Choice Quotes (No cut b/c everyone needs to see this - DEAL.):

“It’s just destroyed our community,” said Sheila Harrison, 48, a hospital worker who says she knows several of the defendants. “These boys have to live with this the rest of their lives.  As opposed to the victim, who's gonna bounce back lickety-fucking-split, right?

Residents in the neighborhood where the abandoned trailer stands — known as the Quarters — said the victim had been visiting various friends there for months. They said she dressed older than her age, wearing makeup and fashions more appropriate to a woman in her 20s. She would hang out with teenage boys at a playground, some said.  TOTALLY BEGGING FOR IT.

THIS IS RAPE CULTURE, PEOPLE.

Now, what's being said and done in this community is bad enough, but the NY Times should be fucking ashamed of themselves right now.

Here's how to contact NYT: )

Energies

Nov. 10th, 2010 04:16 pm
I'm not sure what it is, but things seem to be coming together incredibly well, over the past couple of weeks.

I've removed a fair bit of stressful drama from my life. I'm feeling calmer, but still keeping active and busy. My skating is apparently improving by leaps and bounds, and I'm having more fun at wushu again. I'm eating better, feeling better, interacting better. We may finally have found the right studio for our photography business, and we are gaining traction and getting bookings.

I have a dear friend of 15-or-so-years now living under my roof and loving my town. I have amazing and supportive friends whom I haven't known as long as that, but whom I hold incredibly dear. I think that I may, finally, be attracting the sort of relationships that I've deserved all along, the sort of things in LIFE that I've deserved, but never thought I could have. I'm suddenly IN DEMAND, and not in the awful, obligation-laden, anxiety-inducing sort of way.

Things seem markedly different than they were even a few weeks ago, and I know some of it is a resolve to just take better care of myself, but, hell, sometimes I think I'm just looking at the world differently. All the insanity of the past two years has given me such an appreciation of the small things, and the energy I'm putting out into the universe is strangely positive. I feel as if I am, in some ways, more myself than I've been in... well, possibly ever.

In light of that, I can't help wondering: is this really all it takes? Is it simply a matter of telling the universe what you want, and actually believing in the returns? Did these things not come to me because I wouldn't allow myself to accept them?

If that's the case, while I'm sad for the wasted time in my 20s, I'm certainly glad to have figured it out now. Better late than never. :)
Here's the rest of that list. Again, in no particular order:

16. Get digital piano and play the hell out of it.
Oh lord, do I want to play. So much. I'm watching Craigslist like a hawk until a deal on a good keyboard pops up.

17. Stimulate the local economy.
This is something I've always wanted to do more of, but I didn't feel I could afford it. Now that money is more free-flowing, I could really take this on, and still have quite a bit left for savings. I've always been a fan of farmer's markets and locally-produced foods. I'd love to focus my girly spending on locally-made wearables, because I know great people who produce such things, and I want to support them. I've also sometimes been able to support local businesses by going to them for my own business' needs, too, and I love that and want to do even more of it.

18. Learn bike maintenance.
I know at least a few people who maintain their own bikes well, so why not me? Every time I ride my bike and look at my screwed-up back tire, it fills me with sadness.

19. Do something that scares the crap out of me.
No, this does not mean pursuing the realm of "extreme" sports. This is about confronting fear, and gaining strength from doing things I would previously have avoided, no matter how ordinary some of them might seem to others. Some of the things on this list could fit the bill, but I imagine the real triumph will be something very personal, and fairly difficult to quantify.

20. Tap dancing class.
Of all dances I've tried thus far, tap is probably my favorite. There HAS to be a tap class for adults in this town (EDIT: that does not also conflict with wushu practice). I've looked for this off and on with no luck, but confound it, THIS WILL HAPPEN.

21. Try out kettlebell and/or CrossFit.
I was reading about both of these things off and on, at the height of my fitness frenzy, and I wanted to try it, because functional strength training is fantastic. This might be a good opportunity to do so. I think I might be too wimpy for CrossFit, but maybe kettlebell would help me work up to it?

22. Aesthetic improvements for my house.
My bedroom is already well into this process, but the rest of the house essentially looks like a bunch of random crap haphazardly thrown together, because... well, that's what it is. I *would* like to get some paint in the walls, and then some art to go with it, and maybe some furniture, further down the line.

23. Art prints for my home, and possibly yours.
I've procrastinated on getting my own art prints sorted and printed, largely because doing that before I'm done painting didn't make much sense. But I have a lot of shots, and a lot of bare walls, and maybe you have bare walls that need prettying, too.

24. Doctors and dentists.
Because I'm the sort of person who doesn't seek medical care unless I'm having a problem, I still don't have a primary care physician or a dentist, after living in Portland for three years. This is dumb, and I should fix it.

25. Give more gifts.
I think I fell out of the whole gift-giving thing during college, because I had no money to spend. Still, when Christmas shopping time rolls around, I'm consistently reminded that I enjoy finding the perfect gift for people I care about, the thing they'd love but wouldn't expect. It'll likely be a thing I do when I'm struck with a great idea for someone, but I already have a couple ideas for upcoming birthdays and am putting them into motion, and I hope to make this more of a habit.

26. Leave room for spontaneity.
My calendar is taking over my life, and I do not like it. I'm something of a Plan Monster, and most of my major goals require me to be, and I'm usually assailed by raging guilt when I promise something and then fail to follow through on it. But, it *is* possible to leave room for large, unplanned blocks of time, and I must learn how to do so without becoming a flake.

27. Stop hating my job.
This could manifest in several ways. I could learn to accept the boredom and frustration, because it is only temporary. I could somehow alter the shape of my job so it becomes *less* boring and frustrating. Or, I could quit The Job entirely and do something else that I love much more. Which of these things it'll actually be? Biiiig question mark.

28. Teach an after-school program.
After shooting for an article at The Job about after-school programs and meeting some of the volunteer instructors, I had the thought of running an after-school wushu program. I'd be teaching older kids, *and* spreading the gospel of wushu. Of course, now that I might actually have time, the school year is almost over, but there's always this coming Fall.

29. BAKE.
I have not baked nearly enough, largely because this tends to run counter to goal #4. But hey, maybe doing this will teach me the meaning of moderation.

30. Let the right ones in.
Yes, I Have Trust Issues, but it doesn't have to rule me. There are people worthy of my trust, and I should know when to give it to them.

And, even though it has already been stated previously, an extra one to grow on:

31. Play more games.
The D20 campaign is starting off on the right foot, and this weekend, I am officially buying myself an XBox 360 and a copy of Dragon Age: Origins. Throw in monthly game nights and other such gatherings, and I'm already pretty well on my way with this. W00t!

Bully

Jan. 27th, 2010 12:27 pm
I can't help but feel like many of the things stated in this article should have been BLATANTLY OBVIOUS already, but: Victims of bullying face lingering health issues

Seriously: having your peers harass you constantly makes you more likely to feel lonely, depressed, and lacking in self-esteem? I mean, REALLY? They needed a study to tell them that?

As for the bit about fight-or-flight response and the ways that stress can affect health, there's certainly some truth to that. Stress in general easily translates into problems with blood pressure, weight management, weakened immune response, etc. I mean, look who you're talking to here: the girl who worked herself so hard that she spent 2 1/2 weeks sick with a cold. ;p

I suppose the part that's worth noting is towards the end, where it (briefly) talks about how parents can handle the situation and be helpful. I got the "stick up for yourself and don't show that it bothers you," response when I was growing up, and I know from personal experience that it doesn't work, for exactly the reasons they state. Even today, when I'm faced with personal problems, I still feel very alone in dealing with them.

I do find some comfort in the fact that, as I read up various issues of this sort, they confirm a lot of my own experience, and I've learned a lot about how to lay a good foundation in any kids I might have. They'll at least have a better chance of avoiding the issues that I've struggled with from childhood, some well into adulthood.

Whether or not they'll have an entirely *different* set of issues? That obviously remains to be seen. ;)
batskeets: (yan!)
I know at least some of you will see, or maybe already have seen, this via Facebook or Twitter, but here's my Blog Action Day post on our business' photography blog:

Global climate change: It's not over yet!

I'm probably not saying much that hasn't been said before, but please, take a minute to think of something you can do (or are already doing) to help stop global warming in its tracks. Portland is probably one of the easiest places to live if you're looking to exercise sustainable practices. You can take this one on. :)
The ol' body is feeling noticeably better today than I was yesterday. Woohoo! I still feel bloaty and gross, but that has more to do with 4 days of crappy eating than it does with any sort of illness. ;)

As some of you might've noticed, I had Twitter updates being sent to my phone while I was at PAX. It actually was sort of handy for keeping up on PAX-related things, and I was spending a lot of time sitting in lines, so I figured it was as good a time as any to test whether or not I could actually cope with constant Twittering.

The answer to that? Is a big HELL NO. It *was* rather nice when I was killing time until a panel started, but in the context of my normal life, I really would go completely insane. At the very least, I wouldn't get a single speck of work done, because when I receive texts, I have this practically uncontrollable need to look at said text. I communicate with Boy about business-related things via text quite a bit, so I'd be way too afraid of missing something important.

One possibility is that, whenever I graduate from my crappy RAZR to an iPhone or G1, I might be able to roll with it then. I'd tried to see if I could assign a unique alert noise for certain texts on my RAZR, so I could differentiate Twitter updates from regular texts, but no dice. My phone sucks so bad. :p

I really do need to make a damned decision about my phone, though. I don't particularly like AT&T and their plans are hideously expensive compared to T-Mobile, but I *would* rather have the iPhone instead of the G1 or G2. Sigh. It's not even about Twitter, really: just being able to access Google Maps on my phone would be priceless.

--------

I won't be talking much about That Thing That Happened Several Years Ago Today. Someone else has probably already said it better. Here's what I said on the day of, though. I didn't expect it then, but now I believe we've all been greatly affected by those events, in ways that extend far beyond the death toll.

Oh snap

Jun. 11th, 2009 04:43 pm
Swine flu has officially landed at The Job! OH NOES :O!!!!11

...seriously, though, the person who was diagnosed is telecommuting until the doctor clears him/her. And honestly, I probably haven't even come into contact with said person, seeing as we occupy 4 floors, and I rarely have reason to leave my own floor.

So, yeah, not worried. I'd rather not feed into the already-rampant fear culture in our nation by flipping out over this.
Hey politically-conscious friend-Os: my homeboy Sean just wrote a blog about House Bill 2588, which you should take a look at. It's currently headed to the Oregon Senate, and let's just say that if you feel like your vote is meaningless now? This bill will not help in the slightest. Write to your state senators and tell them what you think of this.

This sounds like a bad idea: SciFi becoming SyFy? Are you freakin' kidding me? Geekdom is why I enjoy their programming, for chrissake... why should they attempt to distance themselves from it, and potentially alienate a loyal fan base?

And in conclusion, for people who like awesome, superhuman, ass-kicking feats: HOLY CRAP ONG BAK 2**.

Anyhoo, during all my cruising around in the car this past weekend, I found that I was greatly enjoying Franz Ferdinand's most recent album. Huzzah for liking something that wasn't originally released 15+ years ago! They inspire happy bopping and grooving without being boring or overly saccharine, and I like the way they use their synth/samples/whatever the hell the technical term is for funky sound effects that probably came out of a keyboard, which I don't know because I'm a classically-trained music nerd who knows nothing about production.

And oh, MAN. Serafin had us watching Dancing With The Stars last night, which is not normally my bag by any stretch, but because of this, I saw friggin' Steve Wozniak attempt to dance the Quickstep. XD He was, not surprisingly, pretty terrible, but he was having an awesomely good time *being* terrible, so I think he won me over by the end, heh.

** if you have not yet seen the first Ong Bak, then you are required to go forth and watch it ASAP. Or I'll cry. ;) Tony Jaa is no thespian, but dear LORD, he is a bad-ass.

BLEH

Feb. 20th, 2009 03:46 pm
Why am I getting sick again? It was only three weeks ago that I was puking my guts out, and now I have the muck again? My immune system is made of FAIL this winter.

And it certainly doesn't help that scary stuff is happening in the economy. The Dow is getting smacked down again, here's talk of nationalizing banks... oof. I think the most frustrating part of the economic meltdown is feeling so powerless to stop it. All we can do is hope for the best and prepare for the worst, and some of us are certainly better equipped to do that than others.

Well, uummmm... HEY, at least my hair turned out awesome. I kept my length, but the layers are taken up some, and my bangs are asymmetrical and out of my face *at last*. It's got purple in it, but he lightened the purple bits a *lot*, so I bet it won't be a problem to go over it with another color later. I might even do a quick photoshoot in the next few days, if I feel up to it. I haven't really taken an updated photo since my hair got long. Mohoho. Beware of follow-up post with narcissitic display of photos. ;)

Anyhoo, I have no plans for this weekend, save my usual practice, and a short photoshoot on Sunday. SO, if anything is happening, and I don't get more sick, I'm down for it.
Okay, I hate to be a Debbie Downer, but seriously, read the following. (directly quoted from change.gov, emphasis mine)

"When you choose to serve -- whether it's your nation, your community or simply your neighborhood -- you are connected to that fundamental American ideal that we want life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness not just for ourselves, but for all Americans. That's why it's called the American dream."

The Obama Administration will call on Americans to serve in order to meet the nation's challenges. President-Elect Obama will expand national service programs like AmeriCorps and Peace Corps and will create a new Classroom Corps to help teachers in underserved schools, as well as a new Health Corps, Clean Energy Corps, and Veterans Corps. Obama will call on citizens of all ages to serve America, by developing a plan to require 50 hours of community service in middle school and high school and 100 hours of community service in college every year. Obama will encourage retiring Americans to serve by improving programs available for individuals over age 55, while at the same time promoting youth programs such as Youth Build and Head Start.

------------

Now, I have absolutely *nothing* against public service. On the contrary, I admire those who somehow find a way to carve out the time and resources, and it's a great thing to even attempt at fighting against the inequalities that exist in our society. I often wish I could do more of that myself.

BUT, if the government plans to require community service, how exactly would any of us be choosing to serve?

Students who are already struggling to pay for college will have to give up time that could be spent on the job, and put it towards public service. High school kids from poor families will have to spend *their* spare time on public service, time that they could spend working, saving for the future. Or time that they could spend studying, so they'll have some hope at a better life and standard of living than what their parents had.

I understand what the administration hopes to do, and things like improving education and clean energy are certainly not *bad* things. But, there's no reason make public service mandatory. To bring out a spirit of public service, there needs to be a fundamental change in the mindset of the people; they must be willing to do it voluntarily. Requiring it of everyone just turns it into another burden imposed by those who have more power.

Blargh. Okay, I'll post something more fun and fluffy in a bit. ;)
Even with a nice, landslide-type victory in our presidential race, nary an election passes without suspicious shenanigans at the polls: Tim Robbins couldn't vote, despite having lived in the same house, and voted at the same polling place, for 10 years.

It seems that the nightmare of moving my desk constantly is coming back to haunt me: there's a double-office coming available down the hall, and I've apparently been nominated to be one of the two people who will share it. I don't spend much time on the phone, and I'm generally quiet, and I'll be sharing with a guy whose job functions and projects are very similar to mine, so it makes sense from a practical standpoint, but... darn it all, I like having my own space!

I am... displeased. That's the irritating part of this, I suppose: I don't really have a valid reason for why I need my own office, beyond just wanting it that way. So, it seems that I'm stuck. I guess that means no more on-the-job viewing of internet porn* ANTM Rick Astley videos eh, screw it. ;)

On a lighter note, for those who want to see costume pictures, here are some from Saturday:

YATTA! )

All shots from Saturday are courtesy of [livejournal.com profile] bellybalt. When I was introduced to him, Real Names were used, and it was all very mellow. And then, our LJ names were rolled out, and I was all, "OHHH, [livejournal.com profile] bellybalt!" and he was all, "OMG, [livejournal.com profile] skeets?!" and then we all started squealing like fangirls. SO. AWESOME.

* no, Dad, I don't actually watch internet porn.
Sorry, I couldn't resist ;)

I felt a bit odd celebrating Obama's victory last night, after being all "ZOMG RON PAUL FTW" during the primaries. Yeah, I don't exactly agree with all of Obama's policies, but I *am* utterly relieved that we chose him as our next president. I do believe that he will work to inform himself on all the issues he faces, and make measured and thoughtful decisions on how to move forward, and that's far more refreshing than another 4 years of neo-conservatism and warmongering.

The part that really cheers me is that, hey! We elected a person of color as our next President! It wasn't so long ago that we still had segregated schools, and minorities are still struggling even now, to gain the same opportunities as their richer, whiter counterparts.

Some people never thought they'd live to see an African-American President, but we made it happen. We learned who he is, we heard what he had to say, and we chose him. Not in spite of his heritage, or even because of it, but because we thought he was the best choice for the job.

That? Is awesome.

He was right in his speech, when he said that this is only the beginning, however. There are many battles yet to be won, it'll be a lot of work to undo what's been done these past 8 years, and even more work to undo the wrongs that were done before that. Even if he is the President, he's only one man, and if we really desire change, we can't just sit on our duffs and wait for Super-Obama to save us from disaster. He called upon us because he needs us to do the job he's setting out to do.

Here's to Change. Let's hope it's a good one.

Prop 8

Oct. 31st, 2008 02:49 pm
If you know me, you probably know that I'm not easily offended by many things. I'm not often bothered by stereotypes, because I recognize them for what they are, and I also recognize that some stereotypes exist for a reason. Some people take themselves too seriously, and some people look for insults when the intent is just not there.

Being half-Chinese has made me sensitive to discrimination, however. I can recall instances where I went shopping with my mother, and she was quite literally stared at in the grocery store, by sheltered East Coast people who acted like they'd never seen an Asian in their lives. It was far from being a direct act of hatred, but it was still unsettling.

A co-worker of mine was victim of a hate crime earlier in the week. Thankfully, they chose to attack her car instead of her person, so nobody was physically injured, but the circumstances indicate that it was clearly about her race. And this happened in Portland, a city that seems to almost define itself by its progressive and tolerant views. If we're so progressive, then we should know that a good person does not deserve to be put down, or treated like a freak show because of how they look, how they speak, or how they live.

With these thoughts having already been in my mind over the past few days, this short clip seems fitting:



Regardless of how you might feel about alternative lifestyles, discrimination is never right, and our country has a pretty ugly past when it comes to discrimination. I don't presume to tell people how to live, and it's not the law's job to do that, either. Legislating morality with measures like Prop 8 is a HUGE waste of time, when there are far more pressing matters to be dealt with than who marries whom.

I'm sure my California-dwelling friends are smart and reasonable enough to already know this, but it bears repeating. :)
My cell phone's predictive text fails at life. Exhibit A: I try to type in "wushu." It's a word that I've typed in on my cell phone before, multiple times. So, you'd think the phone would figure it out by now.

The word it comes up with? "Wupit." That's not even a friggin' word! Stupid phone.

And speaking of failing at life, check this out. Taking away 401K-related tax breaks would be bad enough, but actually being required by the government to put 5% of your pay into a retirement account? Do we really want a government that's trillions of dollars in debt to start telling us how to use our own, hard-earned money?

If their true aim is to eliminate federal subsidies, big oil or corn subsidies would be much better places to start.
Some of you may have missed this, what with all the ruckus about the flailing economy, but: Why is a U.S. Army brigade being assigned to the "Homeland"?

Yeah, why exactly *do* we need an Army unit patrolling within our own borders? And who decides what constitutes an "unruly individual?" (hint: it's probably not you or me)

Here's an interview with Naomi Wolf, on this very subject. You may want to skip, if you scare easily:


It's getting worrisome out there, in a lot of ways. Are we getting panicked about the right things? Or is our attention being diverted?

Anyhoo, just sharing info, not telling you what to do or not do with it. :)

EDIT: This is not to say that I suspect a vast conspiracy. BUT, actions taken in haste often have serious consequences, and there's a whole lot of haste going on in the panic state of the "emergencies" of recent years. Fear is a powerful motivator, and it doesn't exactly encourage deliberate or thorough reflection.
Indeed, why *do* we vote on Tuesday?

And, is anyone else appalled at the notion of being "too busy" to vote? Granted, I live in a state with mail-in ballots that are sent out in advance, so I don't have to wrestle with the horrors of standing in line to pull a lever on a workday, like many others do.

But, on the other hand, it's your right to vote! The system seems to do its best to keep the common man feeling powerless and disenfranchised, but that doesn't mean we have to make it easy for them. Don't take it sitting down.

I'm tired of being sick. Fortunately, it seems to primarily be in my sinuses by this point, although I still sound froggy.

Also: I now have BANGS. As in real ones of the more straight-across variety. Jury's still out as to whether I like them or not--I feel bloat-tastic after 5 days of not working out, eating lazy food, and guzzling even more water than usual--but they're side-sweepable if I decide that I'm not pulling it off. ;p

And, I have discovered that the Marathon is happening this Sunday, on the same day as my plus-size magazine editorial shoot, the latter of which has been scheduled for several weeks. And, in the same tradition as last year, they didn't call us about shooting the Marathon until this week. Did I mention that A) I hate early mornings, and B) race shoots are quite possibly the most repetitive, uninspiring jobs we get?

So, I'll be essentially be getting up at the ass-crack of dawn to shoot the marathon for 6 hours, finishing that with just enough time to grab some lunch and spend another 4 hours on my editorial. This is also editorial that I've spent months planning, and which I cannot slack on, because it's running in their November issue.

I have half a mind to just tell the marathon people to find someone else, but I'm sure Ben wouldn't go for it, since that's paying work. Uuuuugh. Worst timing EVER. Hating. LIFE.

Well, enough whining. There will likely be Rock Band tonight, a free day tomorrow, and sushi tomorrow night. So hey, good times are coming before the not-so-good. :)

March 2017

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