Tonight I showed X the cute gay couple episode of Tidying Up ("I feel like I was just punched in the face by niceness," they said), and then we turned around and considered the bookcase behind us.
( The right-now book )
( Categories of maybe-keep-maybe-not books )
Categorizing the books in this fashion made it easy to pull down a dozen or so and send them on their merry way. X reminded me not to do too much tonight—I have a cold (again) and have been sleeping very badly (again) and that's not ideal for this sort of emotional task—so I channeled my tidying urges into trimming the extremely large mattress-type tags off our new dining chair cushions and agreeing with X and J that we should get rid of our coat tree, which is huge and space-occupying in a non-useful way.
And now I'm going to to take a long hot bath and read High Stakes, because it said "Read me now!" and there is no better reason to read a book.
And now I'm trying to whip it into shape. A shape (I figured out that part of the problem was that S&F wasn't a Hero's Journey or a
( Read more... )
I am not even going to apologize for this metaphor. February is for shit-posting, I'm told.
Anyway, hi, I'm really grumpy about this story right now and I'm making zero progress and I think I'm going to bed. That is all.
1. Do you make up a dinner plan for the coming week?
I prefer having a meal plan for the next several days, yes. It doesn't always happen - sometimes I don't effectively prioritize my time and I don't get around to it in a timely fashion (i.e., before grocery shopping happens), and sometimes I don't because Beau prefers the flexibility to make meals with ingredients we happen to have on hand. Our cooking styles are really different in that respect; I prefer to cook from recipes and do best when I'm feeling inspired by new dishes, whereas he prefers to keep things straightforward and isn't afraid to experiment with just throwing things together.
2. Do you make up a shopping list and stick to it when shopping?
If I've got a meal plan, you betcha, and it's organized by section of the grocery store and the preferred purchase location to boot. If I don't have a meal plan, we upload things we think we need into our shared digital list and work from there. Sometimes we come home with extra things, or with stuff missing because it was unavailable, or because it turned out to be way more than whoever's shopping thought was reasonable (aka "okay or I could go buy it at another store tomorrow for significantly less").
3. What is one thing that you always buy, but never put down on a list?
I'm really hard-pressed to think of something that fits in this category -- probably specific personal hygiene things (esp. treatment for varying skin conditions), those are the only things I can really think of. Otherwise it's gotta go on the list or it's out of sight, out of mind.
4. Is there anything that you always think you are out of and come home with it to discover you already have a year’s supply on hand?
Funny story there -- for a while, this was definitely us with toothpaste. Beau and I both, on several separate occasions, purchased our favorite toothpaste, each time having forgotten about the Costco-sized stash at home. Right now it's Swiffer wet cloth refills and dish soap refills, but that stuff at least won't go bad.
5. Do you get your groceries delivered?
Currently our only deliveries are through Imperfect Produce, and we're considering cutting that just because while it's nice in theory, I'm running into issues with actually using the produce that comes in before it wilts. Less an issue for the many (many) squashes, but a real issue for the aspirational citrus we keep ordering (and, er, only Beau and sometimes the kids eat citrus). I've used a service through the grocery store that lets me order groceries online and just pick them up at the store all ready to go, but a) it was free and b) I was a solo parent that week; it's not something I'd do regularly, partially because I like grocery shopping.
Opportunity M. Rover - opportunitygrrl
Stardust - stardustboy
Spirit - spiritrover
Gravity Probe B - gravity_probe_b
Hubble Telescope - hubbletelescope
Geostationary Weather Satellites - goes_sat
Mars 3 - mars3 (This one went all out: 'I am Mars 3, superior space exploration technology of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. With Comrade PROP-M, I explore Mars for the greater glory of the Soviet People and to undermine the thinly veiled attempts at interplanetary oppression by the capitalist United States and their "Viking" missions. For Comrade Secretary Brezhnev, for Comrade Lenin, I advance, inspired by the Beautiful Socialist Cause!')
Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer - fuse_sat
Mars Beagle - mars_beagle
Solar and Heliospheric Observatory - soho_sat
Voyager - voyager_at_90au
That's all the ones I could find. I wonder who made them.
And there are official(?) Twitter accounts:
Curiosity - MarsCuriosity
Spirit and Oppy - MarsRovers
(I thought there were more?) Also, some beautiful art from Twitter.
~ "The Diary of Patty Sessions, 1847," Covered Wagon Women: Diaries & Letters from the Western Trails, 1840-1849, page 168. I have added punctuation, month, and year.
You guys, this is a great book, but when I got to this part I actually SAID OUT LOUD, "But that didn't belong to you!" See? They came across a Native American camp, tore the shelters apart, and burned them for fuel. Now, yes, maybe the Indians had abandoned the camp and weren't coming back, but how could these settlers have known that? Omfg. :-(
Anyway. Here is something awesome -- a first print, first edition, SIGNED COPY of Walt Whitman's Leaves of Grass. Omfg again, but in a good way. His WORKING COPY. This is like ... a holy grail. :DDD
I'm gonna be in a zine.
Well, if it funds, I'll be in a zine. (Maybe it'll be a zine later if it doesn't fund? I dunno.) It's a zine for contributors who aren't straight-cis-white-dudes:
We need more diverse games that take us places we never even knew that we wanted to go. We need more diverse voices. Having a diverse range of ideas will keep the industry alive and vibrant. Ten years from now role-playing games will look much different than they do today and encouraging creators to embrace that evolution will be important.Be nice to me, folks; this is the first time I've sent off my work to a total stranger to be published. Presumably, I get paid for this, although the details are fuzzy right now.
I'll have a short story about my goblins. Maybe an essay about goblin society, depending on space constraints.
The Kickstarter campaign runs until the morning of March 3; it's about halfway funded.
Clearly must buy an alarm clock instead of using my phone.
Meanwhile the temperatures have dropped and all the slushy ice has turned to knobbly ice and the snow melt from above freezing temps has turned to glare ice, and I am not happy about this st all.
- The Speed River Journal's Van Waffle writes about the positives of phone photography.
- Some time ago, Drew Rowsome wrote about the queer male photography of Lindsay Lozon.
- John Semley took issue at MacLean's with displays too completely curated for Instagram. What are they (mis)representing?
- JSTOR Daily notes how the advent of nature photography helped change the minds of Americans about the natural environment.
- CityLab looks at how the United States Lighthouse Society is actively cultivating Instagram likes, and why.
( 1. The Unadulterated Cat - Terry Pratchett and Gray Jolliffe ) Silly and charming and fun; this is no kind of great, but it's very endearing.
( 2. The Shape of Their Hearts - Melissa Scott ) I don't know if I'll re-read this one, but even confusing Scott is usually pretty good.
( 3. Rose Daughter - Robin McKinley ) There's probably only so many versions of the same story one person can tell. But I'd read at least one more.
( 4. Gemini Cell - Myke Cole ) I ought to have liked this, but I didn't. Annoying.
( 5. Rivers of London: Water Weed - Ben Aaronovitch, Andrew Cartmel, Lee Sullivan, Luis Guerrero, and Paulina Vassileva ) It's the usual thing - even weaker bits of this series are pretty good. But it was weaker.
( 6. A History of Chinese Civilization - Jacques Gernet trans. JR Foster ) This is a Very Serious proper summary of the history of China, which is a big place with an immense history, so it's also epically long. But mostly quite interesting.
( 7. Looking for a Ship - John McPhee ) This didn't blow me away, but it did make me think about the modern merchant marine in a bunch of new ways.
( 8. The Bear and the Nightingale - Katherine Arden ) I found this rather uncomfortable, but it's genuinely impressive - I can see why people were rating it so highly.
( 9. The Unfortunate Miss Fortunes - Jennifer Crusie, Eileen Dreyer, and Anne Stuart ) Ultimately I just really struggle with most genre romance, even when it's by people I do enjoy reading - so many of the conventions rub me up the wrong way (strong dominant dudes! pushing through your consent because they know you better than you know yourself!) that it's hard to enjoy all the satisfying falling-in-love happy-ever-after bits I do like a lot.
fanfic I read this week, even though I really like doing those posts, and novembermond is hosting fanfic friday to encourage people to do that and share it, because I looked back over my AO3 history for the week, and nope it's too embarrassing to share;
this other "study" that showed up on pinboard about how social media is bad for you, which I was thinking about doing a bonus science teardown of, except it's such bad science there isn't even anything to tear down, so I'm just going to link to Bad PR instead;
a post about putting favorite characters on "too cool for school/just wants to be a good boy" axes spun off from china_shop's very scientific guardian poll because my attempt at doing it spun off into thoughts on power/race/gender vs. tropes vs. sf settings that play with both, and why black panther is so great; and anyway that's too much work to write about;
the fanfic I'm currently trying to finish which was supposed to be on the "write a quick ending and call it done" list, hahaha
hats, pictures of hats, why I own so many hats, and konmari, because I haven't gotten to the point in the reorganizing project where I am on to hats yet
next steps in nonfiction library reshelving project, begun two years ago
the martian, welcome to mars, opportunitygrrl, and how humans are so human about people stranded on mars
why every attempt I make to use markdown to do easy lists in DW entries fails
work bullshit, because auugh
more thoughts about into the spiderverse inspired by listening to the spiderverse soundtrack on my commute inspired by work bullshit
weighted blankets vs. blankets that just happens to be weighty because I would have to have made my bed first
this unrelated playlist I'm suddenly working on\
further bookmarklet updates
the current state of the New Septic Tank saga
the half-finished december meme post I'm supposed to be posting next
probably I will add to this list as I remember more things
- The Island Review took a look at the notebooks of four writers and one artist.
- Slate looks at the history of SF-LOVERS, arguably the first online SF forum from the era of Arpanet.
- This JSTOR Daily interview with Seymour Hersh on the future of American journalism was worth reading.
- Patricia Wrede wrote some wise words about the problems with writers' internal editors.
- Tatty Hennessey wrote at Open Democracy about the importance of telling stories to help make sense of our world.
I’d think of that [sales] job and what it taught me about persuasion later when others would get frustrated that their first attempt at reassurance didn’t magically “fix” my mood.
When they were effectively trying to persuade me to feel better and took personal offense to the reality that to persuade someone you will likely have to overcome their objections.
This doesn’t mean that they don’t want to feel better. Or that it’s impossible. Instead, it’s the way that reassurance typically functions, like all attempts to persuade someone else of something. You don’t start out at agreeing; you need to be persuaded.
That’s not a sign that there’s something wrong with the person you’re trying to help. That’s how reassurance is.
True, there are times when a person can be so distraught that they’re obstinate, really sticking to their self-hatred, their illogical worries. It happens. Fear and insecurity don’t play by the rules.
But I’ve found it’s much more common that people will provide a partner one reassuring comment and then give up when it doesn’t instantly make their partner happy, or worse when their partner argues, providing evidence that contradicts what they just said. Never realizing of course, how they’ve approached it feels like this conversation to the person they’re trying to help:
“Because I said so.”
This is probably the first post written by this author with which I've pretty vehemently disagreed -- not exactly with its central premise, which is that providing reassurance to people is at least partially about overcoming obstacles in persuading them to feel differently about themselves, that's totally true.
Instead I'm coming down pretty firmly on the side of the author's partners who are all "I can’t make you feel good about yourself." I can't hold myself responsible for another person's sense of self-worth and also I don't see that as fundamentally possible in a healthy way, like, I'd never want someone's sense of their own self-worth to be dependent on my opinion of them or my goodwill toward them. And this isn't an excuse to be insensitive to people's needs/expectations/etc, or to be a jerk about someone's appearance or personal habits or whatever, nor is this me trying to weasel out of giving people compliments or praise (I'm not often great at Words of Affirmation but I do like offering praise and compliments when they're genuine!) I just -- my sense of self-worth is my responsibility to myself, and given my brainweasels it's a pretty big one, I'm absolutely not the person you should be relying on for your sense of self-worth too!
But I'm looking back at the piece and especially the end, which I quoted above, and find myself frustrated with the whole notion that a person expressing self-doubt or -recrimination necessarily benefits the most from reassurance. When I am expressing self-doubt and self-hate, what I need most from the people to whom I am expressing it is to feel seen: "Oh, you're really feeling some kinda way about yourself regarding this" + some invitation to dig a little deeper and maybe eventually problem-solve, i.e. "What did you learn that you can take with you as a lesson for the future?" -- but only after I've gotten all the way through the feeling and out the other side! -- works a whoooooooole lot better for me than someone trying to convince me that I don't/shouldn't feel however it is I'm feeling, which is what "Feel better, because I said so" basically amounts to.
(Like, I think of an acquaintance of mine who regularly posts self-negative diatribes about how much of a failure she is on FB, and despite her saying things like "And don't try to tell me I'm wrong, I know I'm not," etc., her comments section typically fills up with people who are attempting to offer her reassurance by ... telling her she's wrong, demonstrating for her all the things that are good about herself and why she shouldn't feel the way she does, etc., in ways that always struck me as misguided at best. She's literally said not to do the thing y'all are doing so you're doing it why? Reality-checking her distorted perception of herself is something she already knows how to ignore/distrust? Anyway, tangent.)
And on top of that, I will almost always resent feeling like I've somehow manipulated someone into offering me reassurance about my moral worth by expressing self-doubt/-hate/-recrimination. I'm beginning to realize that feeling manipulative is a pretty big emotional landmine for me, and when I think I'm asking for one thing, but get a response that indicates a different question I didn't explicitly ask may be the one to which the askee is responding, I feel like I've been manipulative and emotionally dishonest. I don't know what, if anything, I can/should do about this, except to have recognized it and get better about being explicit when I'm requesting emotional labor from someone.
So this was a really good conversation to have had with Beau, because we've been having some conversations about my negative self-talk lately, and this article was key to realizing what wasn't quite sitting right with me about those conversations, because yeah, he totally does the thing where he tries for reassurance first and being able to sit with him and say "oh actually what I needed/was expecting from sharing x with you was y" has been hella useful, especially because it meant that I could apologize for it in a meaningful way and not one that feels even moar anxiety-dance/supplicative/manipulative/