Jun. 10th, 2011 12:04 am
torachan: (Default)
Gah, how did I let these pile up so much again? I keep saying I'm not going to let this happen, and then the next thing I know, I have four pages in Read It Later. D: And then as I was going through them right now, a bunch felt so old that I was like eh, why bother? And deleted them. And then I didn't feel like rereading the faily things in order to talk about them, so I deleted those links, too. So here are a bunch of mostly fun-stuff type links.

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Ebook Piracy
Author Cecilia Tan talks about how file sharing can be good for creators.

Announcing Dark Agenda's Kaleidoscope Fanwork Exchange
It's a chromatic rare fandom exchange! Dunno if I'll participate or not, though I am pleased with how much writing mojo I seem to have at the moment, so maybe so?

Maru's birthday surprise
For his fourth birthday, Maru got to choose any box he wanted.

XVI, by Julia Karr
I love when [personal profile] rachelmanija reads bad books so I don't have to. And especially when she writes about them so hilariously. This book is bad, really bad, but her review is awesome.

Racebent!Tony Stark
[personal profile] glockgal made fanart based on that fic where Tony Stark is Vietnamese American! :D

With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility
Oh, Hark! A Vagrant, how I love you. It's Brown Recluse Spiderman! XD Ooh, a crevice!

Lois Lane, Girl Reporter
So this guy pitched a YA book series called Lois Lane, Girl Reporter that would have been super awesome, but DC passed on it because they're misogynistic assholes. But someone could nominate this fandom for Yuletide. Just saying.

My life, it is ending one second at a time
[personal profile] marina posts about a couple of gay porn stars who are actually a couple, and who have done a film together. What she describes sounds so much like a fanfic, it really made me wish I could read this story! XD (Maybe someone could nominate this for Yuletide, too.)

A Softer World #668 and A Softer World #663
Speaking of fic, I would like fic based on both of these. Maybe I will write it? There should be an A Softer World fic-a-thon.

Please Save My Earth with Melinda & Michelle
Two manga bloggers reread Please Save My Earth. I started in on a reread myself a couple years ago (and then got distracted and didn't finish), so that made it a little more fresh in my mind, but even for the stuff I didn't really remember, it was fun to read what they had to say about one of my favorite series of all time.

101 Asexy Sex Scenes
[personal profile] melannen made a list of 101 asexual sex scenes based on an imaginary show. What I really love is how she managed to do it without ever using pronouns for any of the characters.

Two of a Kind
I love this comic about [personal profile] vi and her dad.

Totoro/Batman fanart
Cutest fanart of anything ever.


Apr. 22nd, 2011 01:21 am
torachan: (Default)
Just enough commentary to make it clear (hopefully) what the links are about. Just trying to get all this stuff out of Read It Later so I can start fresh and not be overwhelmed by EIGHT PAGES of links (a lot of which I ended up deleting anyway).

25 links )

And some fun stuff to end with:

Possibly my favorite Maru post ever
Noble mouse:[Eek!! It is my noble buttocks.]

Possibly the least internet savvy person ever

Why cats are not doctors

Of Another Fashion
Tumblr with vintage photos of women of color.

Fats and Cats
Tumblr that is just what it sounds like.

A Legit-o-mite Fraud
I don't read Fandom Wank anymore unless something comes to my attention and I'm glad this did. Most hilarious wank I've seen in a long time.

Stats show kudos have not caused a drop in comments on AO3
I knew they wouldn't, but it's nice to have the stats to back it up!

Surprise egg
A giant chicken egg with a surprise inside it.


Mar. 15th, 2011 12:26 am
torachan: (Default)
Ugh, it feels like ages since I've done a linkspam and my Read It Later is all filled with links I want to share but never seem to get around to. :-/

Anyway, not much commentary or organisation this time, because I'm at the point where if I don't get these out, I'll probably just delete them all rather than feel stressed out about them. (Also a mix of new stuff I just bookmarked today and old stuff that's been sitting for weeks and weeks, whee.)

Fukushima Nuclear Accident – a simple and accurate explanation
Everyone should read this. It is long, but a very good and easy-to-understand explanation of what actually happened with the nuclear plant(s) and why there is no need to panic. From the highlights section at the end:
# Japan is looking at an INES Level 4 Accident: Nuclear accident with local consequences. That is bad for the company that owns the plant, but not for anyone else.
# Some radiation was released when the pressure vessel was vented. All radioactive isotopes from the activated steam have gone (decayed). A very small amount of Cesium was released, as well as Iodine. If you were sitting on top of the plants’ chimney when they were venting, you should probably give up smoking to return to your former life expectancy. The Cesium and Iodine isotopes were carried out to the sea and will never be seen again.

Some Perspective On The Japan Earthquake
This is a good post about Japan's disaster-preparedness and geography.

Plug in to movies that know how you're feeling
Neat technology, but not something that remotely interests me as a story-telling mechanism. What it most reminds me of is a high-tech version of Choose Your Own Adventure books, and while I read a ton of those as a kid, I always found them frustrating because I just wanted the real story, not a bunch of choices.

‘The Last Airbender: Legend of Korra’: The Creators Speak

[personal profile] sanguinity: Settler Colonialism and the Imagined Indigenous Viewpoint

[personal profile] the_future_modernes: Logic? What logic?
Almost-18-year-old girl is denied the right to get an abortion without parental permission on the grounds that she is too immature. 1. Her supposed immaturity was decided because of her "bad grammar" and because she didn't ask her parents' permission for an abortion. 2. Too immature for an abortion, yet mature enough to raise a child? (See post title re: lack of logic...)

How Not to Deal With a Student Mother
The chancellor of the University of California at Davis is pledging an investigation and "swift and appropriate action" over an e-mail in which a class was polled on the grade that should be given to a student who had to miss some quizzes because she had given birth.

Irrationality vs vaccines: Fighting for reality

On Growth Attenuation and ‘Moral Compromise’

How You Shop When You Are Poor

Word to the Wise: Unpacking the White Privilege of Tim Wise

911 police call results in rape, woman says

Mother Jailed For Sending Her Children to the “Wrong” School
The most horrific part of this is not the actual jail time, but the way the judge deliberately gave her a felony conviction to ruin her life. So much for her dreams of becoming a teacher. So much for her ever having any chance to better her and her children's lives. It's so vicious and senseless and so clearly meant to put her in her place.

Nine Myths About Socialism in the United States

The Dark Side of the Bird
There's no question that Americans overwhelmingly prefer white chicken meat to dark. We eat chicken almost 10 times a month on average—according to data from 2007— but on less than two of those occasions do we choose chicken legs, thighs, or drumsticks. At the household level, this isn't problematic; families can buy prepackaged white meat instead of whole birds. But magnify this preference millions of times over on a national scale, and the imbalance could, theoretically, lead to canyons of perfectly edible chicken going to waste.

11 of the Tea Party GOP's Most Ridiculous Policy Ideas (So Far)

HarperCollins 26+ checkouts
HarperCollins has a new policy where ebooks can only be lent 26 times before the library has to buy a new copy, supposedly because physical books wear out and have to be replaced, so ebooks should as well. However, as this great video shows, most books are in excellent condition after far more than 26 checkouts, so this policy is really just a way to gouge libraries (which are generally already on very tight budgets).

And now that I have gotten my Read It Later down from 7 pages to 4, I will leave you with some fun stuff:

A fox licking a sliding glass door and trying to get inside

Really beautiful fanart (mostly Harry Potter and Inception)

Perfect for eating after some English peas and late-night bacon.

Never said about restaurant websites: a tumblr with quotes you'll never see people say about horribly-designed restaurant websites (that's all of them, right?) Some of my favorites:

“I was wondering if this place had an atmosphere of murmuring patrons and clinking dishes. Thanks to the sound effects on this website, now I know!”

“I really do enjoy having to find that cool scroll-bar you built into your Flash website. I find the wheel on my mouse way too confusing, so a Flash scroll bar that doesn’t work with the mouse wheel is a breath of fresh air.”

“It’s always a nice surprise when a website resizes my browser window for me. Really, so thoughtful.”
torachan: (Default)
Custom My Little Ponies
This person makes modded My Little Ponies and I have seen her stuff before, but the last time I saw any was a couple years ago and there is so much more! I really like the new Alice in Wonderland ones.

[personal profile] schmevil: mass-multi-media-remix thing
Urg, I meant to link this when it was posted but it has been sitting there in Read It Later for weeks. Anyway! Some neat ideas about a possible remix challenge where multiple people remix the same work. I think it sounds like it could be very cool!

My Week of Eating Nothing But Candy
What it says on the tin. XD Guy eats nothing but Christmas candy for a week. I laughed.

Sailor Daleks
This is awesome.

Stuffed Alot

[personal profile] glass_icarus: Potluck #1
Potluck was inspired by a round of internet conversations about food, shame, and culture/ethnicity. It is intended to be a carnival for multicultural and intersectional discussions of food, including but not limited to food discussions intersecting with disability, gender, sexuality, fat, animal rights, and cultural and racial issues. This is not to say that we have or will cover all of these intersections in a single carnival; Potluck is simply a room in which we can talk about them.

Don't Forget to Collect Your Heart!
Ahaha, best Legend of Zelda fanart I have ever seen.

Chart of how to sing Total Eclipse of the Heart
I loled.

Stop raising your hand alligator
You don't know the answer to my questions. You are an alligator.

[personal profile] the_future_modernes: Dreadlocked Barbies
Links to some neat custom Barbies.

'Steampunk Palin' Comic More Insane Than You Imagined
There is a comic book about Sarah Palin. And it is (sorta) steampunk. And also a third of it is just pinups of her. idek.

Running Toward the Gunshots: A Few Words About Joan of Arc
Very neat post about Joan of Arc, whom I really knew nothing about until reading this. But apparently Joan of Arc was pretty awesome? As someone in comments said, I wish the post had allowed for the possibility of Joan being trans, since it seems very possible, but still, neat post.
torachan: brandon flowers of the killers with the text "some beautiful boy to save you" (some beautiful boy to save you)
Oh my God, some of these links are so old, idek. D: I think this cut down my Read It Now list from seven to four pages, though! Woohoo!

Having seen so many "reblog/retweet this and I will donate $1, 5 cents, however much per reblog" stuff going around with all the flooding, etc. I actually laughed out loud when I saw this.

And now, on to the main linkspam!

We Are the Youth
Really awesome blog where queer youth tell their stories.

Let's Talk About "Tranny" - Meanings
One of the most illuminating ways of understanding the use of "tranny" is to watch how it is used as a put down for cis women. Several people have pointed out this pattern. Plenty of examples focus around fashion and the message that a tranny is someone who is incapable of doing femininity correctly, whether you're talking about the shoes that make you look like a tranny, insulting a cis woman's "tranny makeup," or the outfit that turns a cis woman into "a hot tranny mess."

To Parents
I don't entirely agree with everything in this post (for one thing, I think the term gender-non-conforming is useful), but it's a good post about how so many cis parents say they would be okay with their kid being trans, but don't really make the effort to be proactive about it. I especially like what he has to say about trans kids who are seemingly cis because they like the toys they are "supposed" to like for their assigned gender. Maybe you will suspect your child might be trans if they were assigned male at birth and love dresses, but what if they are into trucks and sports and seem just like a "typical boy"?

Should We Introduce Children to the Concept of Transgender People?
My answer: yes, duh. :p This is necessary because of the sort of stuff talked about in the post above. (And to get cis children used to the idea of trans people, too.)

Argentina: Alejandro tells his "Big Brother" housemates he is a trans man
Big Brother Argentina has a trans guy on this season.

Ok a rant about LGBTQ representation – and why hints don’t cut it
What it says on the tin. Slashiness is no substitute for actual queer characters in fiction.

Trans Queers: A Transfags Sex Journal
Really neat blog written by a couple of trans men of color, documenting their hookups with cis gay guys.

Cisgender authors writing over transgender lives
Leslie Feinberg: While a hostile relative re-writes my life: ‘Who is, and is not, my family’
Trans-themed teen fiction: Jumpstart the World
These three posts are about the book Jumpstart the World, which is a YA book with a trans character, written by a relative of Feinberg's, who is essentially claiming some sort of authenticity due to being related to hir. Basically, typical actions of a self-proclaimed "ally". The book sounds skippable, even without the controversy surrounding it.

Re-watching movies
When I first watched Priscilla at 14, it was one of those click moments that, oh yes, trans women exist, it is possible, it is liveable. I was never a queen and never part of campy gay male culture, but still it spoke to me in powerful ways. I still know the words to most of the songs on the soundtrack.

Rewatching it now though, it really is an awful portrayal in many respects.

Travis Mathews' "I Want Your Love"
This is a preview of a really neat-looking gay film. It has explicit sex (as in, "there are actually two dudes really for reals having sex on screen" level of explicit), but unlike most porn, there is a real story and it feels like the sex is there to tell the story, rather than just to get the viewer off.

"But Trans Women Are Triggering!"
Or do you actually mean people will start recoiling in transphobic disgust and fear from the trans woman quietly standing in a corner feeling uncomfortable and wishing somebody would talk to her at your (fucking awful) party? Do you mean people will feel weirded out, grossed out, and phobic? Do you mean they will feel "unsafe" because they've absorbed a cissexist idea of what a woman is and have been taught that trans women are dangerous perverts?

Say what you mean, transphobes-- and keep my fucking disability out of it.

Anti-rec: Trio of Sorcery by Mercedes Lackey
Lackey's new book is a transphobic mess. Beware of stomach-turning description within. There is also some good discussion on Tumblr about some other transphobic shit of hers. (If you're not familiar with Tumblr, you can scroll down that list of people who reblogged and click on the ones with link text and see what they wrote. Tumblr really is horrible for discussion, and yet there is so often really good discussion going on over there.)

And last, but not least, if you are on Tumblr (or even if you're not, and just want to browse, or want to subscribe through a feed reader!), there are two new fat-positive Tumblrs for trans folk: fuckyeahtransfats and fytransfat.
torachan: (Default)
So, as you may have noticed, there have been a ton of posts about illegal book downloads lately. They have all been so good! And I wanted to link to them! But then there were SO MANY that I wanted to link to that I went into avoidance mode. WHILE STILL BOOKMARKING MORE TO LINK. ;o;

Anyway, today I am determined to get this done. So here are a bunch of excellent posts about "piracy", but I am not putting quotes because I don't have the time to search through for just the right one. They are all good posts and should be read!

[personal profile] qian: ebook piracy
[personal profile] colorblue: this is not a post about yoga!
[personal profile] epershand: Established: I am an asshole
[personal profile] vito_excalibur: FOG, theft, inevitability
[personal profile] rhivolution: We're really bad eggs.
[personal profile] marina: Untitled
[personal profile] wistfuljane: *wry twist*
[personal profile] qian: Control and connection
[personal profile] deepad: The politics of discussing illegal file-sharing
[personal profile] snarp: On Digital Piracy, By Way Of My Confession That I Am A Deranged Criminal.
[personal profile] mirabella: Untitled
[community profile] ebooks: WWJSD: What Would Jack Sparrow Do?
[personal profile] sholio: Musing on book piracy
[personal profile] starlady: Some links on illegal file-sharing and IPR
[personal profile] marina: I swear this was going to be a cheerful post; apparently I'm not done talking about this

I don't know that I really have my thoughts in order to make a coherent post of my own, but here are a couple things just quickly:

1. Illegal downloads are NO DIFFERENT from borrowing from a friend or getting a used copy off Amazon or BookMooch. (I would add taking it out from the library, but I am not sure exactly how libraries work in that regard, so I will leave them out of the discussion.) It feels different because it's new, but it's not. Really. I read fifty books last year and ONE of them was bought new. The rest, the author never saw a penny for because they were all used copies. I am not a better person because I got them from BookMooch rather than downloading.

2. I have little sympathy for people who apparently quit their jobs and expected to be able to earn a living entirely from writing books. That seems pretty fantasyland to me, you know? I thought everyone knew that the chances of being JKR are pretty slim and writing should not be your only source of income?

3. A lot of what I'm seeing from authors is the insistence that if you can't afford the book or can't access it through more traditional means, you don't deserve to read it. This comes off like spitefully punishing readers and I just don't understand it. My thinking is that if people can pay, great, but if they can't, what is the use in telling them not to read it?

And here is something relevant to this discussion: a copy of Howard Zinn's A People's History Of The United States that you can read online. The people who run the website have received C&Ds, but believe that this is a book that people need to read and thus that it should be available for free. (I managed to get a copy from BookMooch myself, and it has been high on my to-read list, but I think I will bump it up even higher.)
torachan: (Default)
The Roma of Rome: Heirs to the Ghetto System
For years, and most notably with the closure in February of the Casilino 900 enclave, Italian authorities have pushed the Roma out of squatter settlements that were unofficially tolerated and into sanctioned housing developments, where fences, gates, guards, flood lights and surveillance cameras box in and monitor the residents. Legislation passed in 1985 enabled the provincial government to build special camps in undesirable areas on the periphery of the capital. This ordinance, together with special police powers granted in 2007, and the subsequent declaration of a regional state of emergency, allowed municipal authorities in Rome to create and subsidize a separate zone — a separate reality — for the Roma.

Mother, superior?
You may have read the article in the Wall Street Journal by Amy Chua about how "Chinese mothers" are so much better than other mothers because they're not afraid to push their children, even if it means bullying them and calling them names. Reading it made me cringe, both because I know people who have been fucked up by parents like this and because I knew it would result in lots of white people patting themselves on the back for being so much better than those horrible Asian parents (because white parents never fuck their kids up!). As it turns out, the article was edited without Chua's permission to give a totally different impression than what her book is actually about:
"I was very surprised," she says. "The Journal basically strung together the most controversial sections of the book. And I had no idea they'd put that kind of a title on it. But the worst thing was, they didn't even hint that the book is about a journey, and that the person at beginning of the book is different from the person at the end -- that I get my comeuppance and retreat from this very strict Chinese parenting model."
This is nothing but racism on the part of the WSJ.

Additional Retractions, Corrections, and Apologies for Ann Lopez, Lynnette Ramirez and Luisa Leschin
Speaking of creative editing, maybe you have heard of a book called The Dirty Girls Social Club. I had heard the title (possibly read a review on [ profile] 50books_poc or something), but nothing more than that. It turns out it is being made into a TV show, but one that is nothing like the book Alisa Valdes-Rodriguez wrote. I wanted to link to two posts she wrote about it, but she was forced to take them both down. The post above details some of the stuff she wrote about before, but basically, she wrote a book about a bunch of latina women in college, and specifically had them be a very diverse bunch. In the TV show, the black latina woman is now an African American woman of the fat and sassy variety, the white Jewish Cuban woman is just white, the Mexican American character whose family has been in the US for hundreds of years is now a recent immigrant from South America, and the Christian lesbian character is now straight and IIRC this is the one who is described in the script as "spicy" or some other stereotypical language. The title, which was in the book taken as an ironic name for their group of friends due to the way the conservative parents of one woman always put her down by calling her a dirty girl for wearing pants, etc. is now literal and all they do is party and have sex. [In the now-deleted posts, there was a lot of slut-shaming from the author regarding this, which made me uncomfortable, but I am certainly not happy with the change myself, especially considering how it plays into racist tropes about latina women.] So yeah, major whitewashing and other crap going on with this.

My Sailor Moon Movie Cast Choices
This post is a fan casting, nothing official (I don't believe there is any US live-action Sailor Moon in the works at the present?), but I wanted to link it when I found it, because it's yet another example of how so many people don't see anime characters as Japanese. To this girl, apparently despite the characters having Japanese names, living in Japan, and being surrounded by Japanese cultural markers (I mean, Sailor Mars is a miko at her family shrine; that's a pretty obvious one), these characters are not Japanese. Her dream casting is mostly white, though a few are latina and a couple minor characters are black (the main cast is all white). None are Asian.

Expletive Expletive HEADDESK RAGE!!!!
So, I have not seen Social Network, nor do I have any desire to, but apparently there was some whitewashing going on there, too, and the director had these charming words about why they chose a white dude to play someone who is Indian IRL: "there's nothing, aside from being incredibly tan, there's almost nothing that seems particularly ethnic about him".


Also, he was an important character, according to the director, and he wanted him to be equal. Which apparently means casting a white dude.

Arab Activism: Brought to you by a White Man
WikiLeaks is apparently being cited as the reason for the Tunisian uprising.
Because the college graduate forced to sell fruit and vegetables illegally until the government stopped him from even doing that was probably all over those fucking Wikileak cables. Gee, it wasn’t until it was uncovered that Tunisia was a “police state” that any well educated Tunisian lawyers had even fathomed it. Corruption? Here? Surely you jest! Never mind the blocked internet sites. Never mind having the same ‘President’ voted in with 80-99% of the vote every single time. Or the obvious censorship and dissapearing of fellow citizens. Why, until those cables everybody was just going about happily, minding their own business.

White Guy Shooting = Crazy; Brown Guy Shooting = Terrorist
So true. Furthermore, white dudes killing = an exception; brown dudes = a representative.

Crazy Talk
Soccer hooligans are much more likely to be violent when they attend a match, but if you tell me that your friend has gone to a soccer match, I'll know nothing about how violent a person he is. Similarly, if you tell me your friend punched someone, the fact that he goes to soccer matches tells me nothing about what caused the confrontation. This puts recent speculation about the Arizona suspect in a distinctly different light: If you found evidence on the Web that Jared Lee Loughner or some other suspected killer was obsessed with soccer or football or hockey and suggested it might be an explanation for his crime, you'd be laughed at. But do the same with "schizophrenia" and people nod in solemn agreement.

The Giffords shooting's gay, Hispanic hero
[Hernandez's ethnicity and sexuality] matters because guys like Arizona Sen. John McCain, who described the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell" as "a very sad day," still think that orientation has an effect on whether or not a person can ably serve in the military. It matters because the notion that two people of the same sex can love each other and build a life together is still considered in many parts of the country, including Arizona, a threat to what is laughably referred to as "traditional marriage" -- as if heterosexuals have really mopped up the floor with this whole commitment thing. It matters because last week, when Arizona banned a Tucson district's Mexican-American studies program, state's Attorney General Tom Horne referred to it as "propagandizing and brainwashing." It matters because just last year Arizona enacted a law that would not merely allow but require immigration officials to determine the immigration status of anyone "where reasonable suspicion exists" that the person might be in the country illegally. And "reasonable suspicion," as many civil libertarians pointed out, might just boil down to having a darker shade of skin or speaking Spanish.

Brooklyn College Student Committed to Mental Institution After Hidden Camera Complaint
Student complains about being harrassed online and her landlord secretly filming her and instead of having her complaints taken seriously, is forcibly committed to a mental hospital. So not surprised this happened to a black woman.

A Brief History of Welfare for Middle-Class Americans
Speaking from experience, people can get genuinely angry when you suggest that they are the recipients of massive financial aid from the federal government. But it's true! The money we spend on tax expenditures for middle and upper class families dwarfs the amount spent on food stamps and other, disparaged forms of welfare.

(This is still only part of the massive backlog I have, but I think I'll quite here. Oof.)
torachan: a cartoon owl with the text "everyone is fond of owls" (everyone is fond of owls)
Oh God, I checked Read It Now and somehow I have seven pages of links? D: Okay, I will unload the quick/fun stuff first!

First off, here's a ton of Yuletart recs that have been sitting there for ages:

Good Enough to Eat by [ profile] dualbunny [Vampire Diaries; Caroline]
I've never seen Vampire Diaries, but this is really great. I love the way they did the chandelier in the background.

Lazy Afternoons by [ profile] darthneko [Suikoden; Liu, Jale, Marica, Hero]
Another fandom I'm unfamiliar with. I really love the poses, especially the girl pulling off her sock.

Gaang 7 by [personal profile] glockgal [Avatar/Naruto; Aang, Katara, Sokka, Naruto, Sakura, Sasuke]
Awww! I love these guys!

smile for you by [ profile] walking_in_dark [Fullmetal Alchemist; Al]
Nice portrait of post-canon Al.

A Little Push by [ profile] fightfair [How to Train Your Dragon; Toothless, Astrid, Hiccup]
Super cute. I love the style of the humans and the dragn is just adorable.

The (adorably) fearsome KARKAT VANTAS by [ profile] wensleydale [Homestuck; Karkat]
Really well done sculpey figure. (There has been some awesome craft-type stuff in this fest.)

The Venus Flytrap by [ profile] _odella_ [Batman; Batman, Poison Ivy]
Wow, this is really good. I love the vines.

I found this awesome artwork on Tumblr, which eventually led me to the website of an artist called Jacek Yerka, but that picture does not seem to be on their site. There is a ton of other really neat illustrations, though, all similarly surreal.

This collection of paper layer art is just amazing. I love the Alice in Wonderland one best, but they are all so good. *_*

Especially for [personal profile] mrkinch and other Sean Bean lovers on my flist, check out this drawing of him as Sharpe.

And this one is especially for [personal profile] nixwilliams (and everyone, really, because everyone is fond of owls). Crochet owl cell phone pouches!

Everyone needs to know how to tie a tie (or so they say). Here's a handy guide to show you to to tie the Lovecraft to turn yourself into Tie-thulhu.

Speaking of things people need to know how to do, people also need to know how to organise things. Specifically, how to organise cats. That site shows you fifteen unique ways to organise your cats! What a great resource.

[personal profile] giandujakiss posted this awesome series of photos of a bear. It will make you laugh, I promise!

Here are some neat photos of the US in the '30s and '40s. It's cool because they're in color. I felt this with those old Russian color photos that were linked around a while back, but it's the same with these. It feels more real to me than black and white, idk.

Moar Nancy Drew covers from Kate Beaton always make me happy. Although I loved all the Hark! A Vagrant fic that got posted for Yuletide, I wish there had been some Nancy Drew stuff, too. This was not a mystery that needed to be solved!

Also humorous and only slightly belated for the Christmas season, An Interview With the Nativity Innkeeper.
Interviewer: So the baby is born, and they place him in the manger.

Innkeeper: Which, by the way, I told them not to do.

Interviewer: Why?

Innkeeper: Because how unsanitary is that? Do you know what a manger is?

Interviewer: As far as I know, it’s the place you put infant messiahs.

And [personal profile] some_stars offers up bad sex advice for heterosexuals courtesy of Cosmo.

Segueing from bad sex to hopefully good sex, if you like romance/erotica and read ebooks, you might want to check out a new recs/review comm, [community profile] ff_mm_bookrecs.

And finally, Seeking short works: Book-length collection of transgender literary fiction may be of interest to some. I may try to submit something myself. The deadline isn't until the end of August.


Jan. 7th, 2011 05:02 am
torachan: (Default)
[ profile] ashkitty: What, again?
Facebook is at it again, folks. They added a new "feature" that gives your info to other websites so they can "customise your experience". Of course it's set to on by default. This post has instructions on how you can turn it off if you don't want a customised websurfing experience, which I really, really don't.

This has been on my links-to-post list for so long I'm sure most people have seen it by now. As the name suggests, it's a site where people send in examples of the sort of *isms encountered on a daily basis. I find the layout difficult to read, but if you don't have a tumblr, you can also just subscribe to the RSS feed and read it in Google Reader or whatever.

I was really sad to see FWD closing. Here are two recent posts I've been meaning to link for a while:

Unfounded Assumptions and Faulty Logic, Ahoy!
An excellent rebuttal to a horrible article about how rising disability claims must be due to lazy unemployed folks scamming the system rather than getting jobs.

Portly + Powerchair + Pedestrian = Panic
Snarky post in response to another horrible, article, this one about the horrors of motorised wheelchairs and the people (probably fatties, amirite?) who dare to use them out in public.

this ain't livin': A Very Glee Christmas
A post about the Glee Christmas episode, mostly focusing on ablism in Artie's storyline.

Two Whole Cakes: Dear Ryan Murphy: I have words about Glee
Another Glee post, this time about fatphobia and the character of Lauren Zizes.

Riots Not Diets: The Fat Body (In)visible
A short (~25 minute) documentary about fat-positivity.

Riots Not Diets: I don’t have to explain my fat to you.
How is it okay to say that only “healthy” fat people who exercise and eat “right” deserve to be respected? To see better images of themselves reflected in the media? To have equal access to health care? To sit in a damn seat on an airplane and not have to worry about the arm digging into their sides so much it makes them want to cry (this is of course from personal experience) or that they’ll be asked to leave the plane or buy an extra seat for “safety” precautions (the experience of Kevin Smith and many others)? The answer is that it’s not.

So I implore you—you, me, fat people everywhere (and especially those beautiful girls posting over at FYCB—to resist the urge to “explain” your fatness. Not only because these questions further divide us, but because they are, in and of themselves, incredibly problematic, embedded in a notion that we somehow can (and should) rid the world of fat bodies.

The Horn Book: YA Fatphobia
About the lack of positive portrayal of fat characters in young adult fiction (I would say that goes for non-YA stuff, too).

Geek Feminism: “Why don’t you just hit him?”
On the many reasons why telling people to "just hit" someone verbally harrassing you is not a workable solution.
torachan: (Default)
Wow, turns out a lot more links I had saved were happy fun stuff than I thought. :D

More [ profile] yuletart recs:

Happy Together (Being Human; George, Annie, Mitchell)
I've never seen this show, but this is adorable.

Sally Sends a Present (Nightmare Before Christmas; Jack Skellington)
Wow! I love when people do crafts for art exchanges. This is a really neat clay figure.

Together for Christmas (The Dark Crystal; Jen & Kira)
Super cute character designs. I love this.

Wallace Wells: Drunk Homosexual (Scott Pilgrim; Wallace Wells)
Another craft piece. It's cross-stitch!Wallace Wells! So awesome!

And some non-Yuletart fanart:

Some X-max cards and random pics~~ by [profile] sadynax
I love the movie!Holmes & Watson card best, but the Sherlock drawings are cute, too. (And there's also Doctor Who and some other fandom I don't recognise.)

I wish people on Tumblr credited stuff, but they often don't, so I don't have artist info for these two, but they are super awesome: adorable chibi fat girl with tentacles (NSFW, inspired by Japanese ukiyo-e octopus pics) and Party Poison (I think this is the best Killjoys fanart I've seen and I'm really sad I don't know the artist). ETA: Thanks to [personal profile] eisen for finding the Party Poison artist. It's solitarium and I changed the link to go to their devart account instead of the tumblr image. (You should check out their account. They have a lot of other cool art.) /ETA

Geek Art is a Tumblr with fanart of the typical western guy geek variety (in other words, mostly superhero comics, video games, Star Wars, and Star Trek). There is some really awesome stuff in there. It's on break for a couple weeks over Christmas right now.

Winter and Christmas wallpapers is a collection of official wallpapers from various manga artists. I am using the Hourou Musuko one as my current wallpaper. :D

The week before last on Cake Wrecks' Sunday Sweets was gingerbread and wow, those are some of the most beautiful gingerbread houses I've ever seen. Following a link from there, I also found this post with more gingerbread houses.

Desaturated Santa
This is so cool! Those pics have not been photoshopped. The woman is actually dressed in greys and has painted her skin and hair grey so that she appears to be black and white.

This graphic illustrating the difference between people acting suspicious and people going about their business made me laugh (even while headdesking and feeling helplessly raegy that the first half is actually a real poster).

Do you like Privilege Denying Dude? Now there's Privilege Denying Cat.

There are also cute puppies running and a fluffy dogs in a stroller.

And I really love these two Wondermarks: In which a Plan ends poorly and The Taylors leave a Shadow.

I really loved this post about Pluto. First off, the art at the top is adorable, but I also really love the post itself about why there's no reason to be sad that Pluto is no longer a planet: "Pluto is now with it’s rocky sistren and brethren in the Kuiper Belt and is THE BOSS OF THEM ALL, because it’s actually much larger and fits in with them better, because instead of having a definition of planet that fits well for eight planets and Pluto getting shoehorned in, you have a definition for planet that fits those eight and Pluto is classified according to it’s actual properties rather than assumptions and nostalgia."

Pompeii skeletons reveal secrets of Roman family life
What it says on the tin.

The Real American Pie
Neat post about mince pie.

Ace Manifesto: Charlie Weasley (Harry Potter)
Did you know that JKR pretty much said Charlie is asexual? She didn't use that word, but she said Charlie "never had children or married" and then when asked if that meant he was gay, she said no, "just more interested in dragons than women".


Dec. 19th, 2010 04:04 am
torachan: (Default)
Gah, this doesn't seem to have even made a dent in my saved links. D:

The Chronicle: The Shadow Scholar
Really interesting post by a guy who makes a living off writing term papers for people.

Think Progress: Tea Party Nation President Says It ‘Makes A Lot Of Sense’ To Restrict Voting Only To Property Owners
Oh, teabaggers. What will you think of next?

Native Appropriations: Ridiculously Maddening Quote of the Day: Rush Limbaugh Blames Indians for Tobacco-related deaths
Speaking of teabaggers. Rush said, "Let's check the scoreboard. How many Native Americans were killed by the arrival of the white man through disease and many people have died since the white man arrived due to lung cancer, thanks to the Indian custom of smoking? Who are the real killers here? ...Where are our reparations? I'm just saying."

Borowitz Report: In Latest Compromise with GOP, Obama Agrees He is a Muslim
This Onionesque parody made me laugh out loud.

Right now? The time, right now, when everyone is running around like chickens with their heads cut off talking about how women LIE about rape, and anyway it WASN’T rape, because once she says yes you can do anything you like to her ammirite, bro?, and what’s this about maybe she was sleeping LALALALA I CAN HEAR YOU, sluts are just jealous, and they regret it in the morning, so they start international furors against some poor guy that the world is already pissed off at, with no good reason because he wasn’t even VIOLENT?


This right now is probably not a good time to say “I’m real happy for you, and Imma let you finish about all of this girly rape apologism stuff, but the fact is that Assange is only being charged with anything because of Wikileaks.”

Because you know what? Chances are we know that.

Salon: The rush to smear Assange's rape accuser
The fact is, we just don't know anything right now. Assange may be a rapist, or he may not. His accuser may be a spy or a liar or the heir to Valerie Solanas, or she might be a sexual assault victim who now also gets to enjoy having her name dragged through the mud, or all of the above. The charges against Assange may be retaliation for Cablegate or (cough) they may not.

Public evidence, as the Times noted, is scarce. So, it's heartening to see that in the absence of same, my fellow liberal bloggers are so eager to abandon any pretense of healthy skepticism and rush to discredit an alleged rape victim based on some tabloid articles and a feverish post by someone who is perhaps not the most trustworthy source. Well done, friends! What a fantastic show of research, critical thinking and, as always, respect for women.

Tiger Beatdown: #MooreandMe: Four Days Outside the Tower. I’m Scared. I’m Tired. I’m Crying. And I Won’t Stop.
EVERYONE KNOWS THAT TWO PEOPLE WHOSE JOBS ARE TO TELL THE TRUTH, DID NOT TELL THE TRUTH, AND WE ARE DEBATING WHETHER THAT IS WRONG. EVERYBODY KNOWS THAT TWO PEOPLE SMEARED A WOMAN ON LITTLE TO NO EVIDENCE AND ENDANGERED HER LIFE, AND WE ARE DEBATING WHETHER THAT IS WRONG. Because it’s about rape, so clearly there might be some way to justify it. Because rape victims don’t matter, their safety, their reputations, their lives, their rapes, they don’t matter to most people. We don’t matter to most people. We don’t matter, we don’t matter. We, us, sexual assault victims, we don’t matter to Michael Moore and Keith Olbermann, we don’t matter to their fans, we don’t matter to the “progressive community,” we don’t matter to the world at large, not as much as this one guy from WikiLeaks, not as much as the guy who directed Chinatown, not as much as Ben Roethlisberger, not as much as Isaac Brock. We don’t matter. We don’t matter. We don’t.

Salon: The inhumane conditions of Bradley Manning's detention
I had actually not heard of this guy before reading this article. Everyone talks about Julian Assange, but I hadn't even heard this guy's name before. He's been in solitary confinement for seven months because he's been accused, not convicted, of giving information to Wikileaks.

Sociological Images: Private Prisons and the Arizona Anti-Immigration Law
Speaking of prison, this is really scary. Privately-owned prisons lobbied for the Arizona immigration law: "According to Corrections Corporation of America reports reviewed by NPR, executives believe immigrant detention is their next big market. Last year, they wrote that they expect to bring in “a significant portion of our revenues” from Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the agency that detains illegal immigrants." The fact that prisons are talking about their "next big market" makes me sick to my stomach. I have no words to describe these people but actively evil.

This Is What a Man Sounds Like: This is What a Male-Bodied Person Looks Like
Relevant to my post the other day: "I understand that often, people will call me a female-bodied person, because they want to put tags on everyone and fit me back into the box that I was born in. That way, they can call me “he,” but underneath, still think of me in a female category, because that way, they don’t have to deal with my self-determination or the complexity of the way I experience transphobia and misogyny."

Thoughts On: Do you use Boy Words or Girl Words? Or the other words, but I can’t ‘amember them.
“Hi I’m Alec are you the babysitter mommy said that we can go to the park if you want to and feed the ducks do you like legos?”

“Yep, hi, my name is Andy.” I said, kneeling down, “Let me talk to one of your parents first, ok?”

While I was saying this Alec was looking me up and down.

“Yeah ok, hey, Andy, do you use boy words or girl words, or the other words but I can’t really ‘amember them?”

I looked curiously at his mom, Amelia, who was busy tiding up the table.

“Oh,” she said, “he can’t remember the word pronouns.”

“Ah,” it clicked, “I use boy words. What about you?”

“I use boy words, too. Do you like legos?”

“Of course I do!”

The Harvard Crimson: Damaged LGBT Books in Lamont Not Result of Hate Crime, Dean Says
Because someone just happened to be walking around with a jar of urine and just happened to spill it all over a stack of (36!!) books that just happened to all be LGBT-related. Happens every day, amirite?


Dec. 14th, 2010 12:25 am
torachan: charlotte from bad machinery saying "oh the mysteries of the moth farm" (oh the mysteries of the moth farm)
God, I have a ton of stuff saved up. This is not even half of it. D:

Carnal Nation: Man Enough
Every once in a while, some well meaning cis guy will offer to teach me about "manhood." The implication, no matter how friendly the intent, always seems to be that I'm doing it wrong; that I shouldn't be wearing skinny jeans or listening earnestly to the problems of my lady friends or, perhaps, even, that I shouldn't be kissing boys. I can't tell you exactly what each individual dude-bro has had in mind, but as you can see, I have a few guesses.

What none of these guys seems to consider is that maybe my less macho attributes are not remnants of my past "feminine" artifacts which I hold onto out of cluelessness as to how a "real" man should behave, that maybe, in fact, I am exactly as masculine as I want to be.

The Bilerico Project: The sexual politics of a hug
So, this is a really interesting post. A trans woman talks about hugs and how women often hug men by putting their arms around the guy's neck, and how uncomfortable it makes her when friends who knew her pre-transition still hug her that way. But what was most interesting to me is that I had no idea this way a thing! I would put it down to my dislike of hugs in general and inexperience with them, but it's not something I'd ever noticed in media, either, and honestly couldn't even picture what she meant at first (though if I google, I do see some hugs like that so I'm sure I have seen if before). If you had asked me how to hug closely, I would have said both people put their arms around each other's torso or shoulders.

Autostraddle: Effing Dykes Presents: What Lies Beneath (Her Fingernails)
A cautionary tale about rhinestone-encrusted fingernails. If this really happened to someone, it sounds pretty horrific, but it's written in a humorous way and I loled. The comments are also a great read. Girl Beaten for Having "Boy's Name"
What's in a name? A 12-year-old girl at Hernando Middle School in Mississippi was beaten by five fellow students -- reportedly because they said her name, Randi, was "a boy name."

"They started talking about me like I was a man," she told local news station WREG. "That I shouldn't be in this world. And my name was a boy name." The four girls and a boy surrounded her after a Fellowship of Christian Students meeting, and, she said, kicked her in the rib and leg, hit her in the face, sat on her, pushed her face into the floor, and threw her onto a cafeteria table.
I love how this took place at a Christian students meeting! What would Jesus do? Gang up a kid and beat her up for something that's not even her fault, apparently. That lacks even the tenous "logic" of "you're gay, so you're a sinner, so you deserve to be punished".

Portrait of an Adoption: Anti-Bullying Starts in First Grade
You've probably seen this story by now, about the little girl who was teased for liking Star Wars because "only boys like Star Wars".

Her Bad Mother: On Freaks And Geeks And Princesses, And Why Lady Gaga Is More Like Jesus Than You Think
Not actually about Lady Gaga at all. This is another mother talking about how she lets her daughter wear what she wants, even if it's "a Snow White costume [...] with striped leggings and her hot pink skate shoes, the ones with the sparkly laces, and also a baseball cap", and the crap she as a mother gets from other mothers who concern troll about how her daughter will be ostracised and teased, because clearly it's better for "the other kids and moms [to be] judging" (direct quote from a concern troll!mom) and to force kids into conformity than to, you know, not judge a preschool kid because she's wearing funky clothes.

Daily Mail: Merry Christmas? Along with millions of other middle class mothers, I can't afford one
OMG This woman is kind of obnoxious. Yes, learning to live on less money than you were used to can be tough, but I just can't work up much sympathy for people with so little self-awareness. She calls herself poverty-stricken with a totally straight face while in the same breath saying she makes 500 pounds (over $700 US) a week (and she's not a single mother, so presumably there's her partner's income as well, though she doesn't mention what they make).

Sociological Images: Are Poor Parents Negligent Parents?
Meanwhile, some asshole is saying parents who rely on school meals to help feed their kids are "criminally negligent" because "what poor excuse for a parent can’t rustle up a bowl of cereal and a banana?" (Soc. Images often has a lot of trolls in the comments, but the discussion on this one is overall really good.)

Raising My Boychick: Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and the discomfit of classism
I have no patience (but plenty of pointed words) for anyone who says that if you can’t afford handmade from Etsy then you don’t deserve anything under your tree, or that if you’re struggling to make rent or don’t have savings you’ve not the right to “extras” like Christmas presents or DVDs or cell phones with cameras. We all of us — unless you are reading this at a public access point on a mandatory fifteen minute break from your 100 hour a week unpaid job of serving the disadvantaged — make “selfish” decisions sometimes. We indulge. We allow ourselves luxuries — yes, sometimes when we don’t have the basics, because it helps us feel a little more human in a world that would deny us our humanity. This isn’t a trait of those poor people over there, it’s something we all of us do; it is only kyriarchy and classism that somehow makes it ok when it is our own indulgences (or those of persons of a similar class), yet calls it “imprudent” and a sign of “stupidity” when they do it. We cluck our tongues at those who fail to buy handmade, while clutching our Kindles and fretting about our retirement and ignoring our hypocrisy.
torachan: (Default)
First off, more Yuletart!

Paleolithic Sunset (Earth's Children by Jean M. Auel; Ayla & Whinny)
I have never read these books, but I'm clicking on everything that comes up and I'm really glad I am because this watercolor piece is absolutely beautiful.

Holy Knight (Final Fantasy Tactics; Agrias)
This is done in the same art style as the official game art and is super adorable. I always liked those character designs.

Sea of Paradise (Ponyo; Sousuke & Ponyo)
Another canon I'm unfamiliar with, but wow. *_* So pretty.

And while I'm reccing fanart, I can't skip [ profile] sadynax's newest, Babysitters. It's more baby!Holmes stuff. All the different Holmeses and Watsons as babies, with various Sherlock characters (Mycroft, Lestrade, Sally Donovan) as older kids. There is so much awesome here. RDJ!Holmes drawing moustaches on all the baby!Watsons. The Russian Holmes and Watson off in their own corner speaking Russian. The bee design on Granada!Holmes's jammies. ♥♥♥

And speaking of cute, how about a kitty cosplaying as a lion? Or cute dogs in swings?

And moving on from animal photos to animal videos, if you haven't seen How to Wrap a Cat for Christmas, you should go do so now! It's awesome!

Another video I recently enjoyed was The Most Difficult Game Ever Created Gameplay and Commentary, which is pretty much what it says on the tin. A guy attempts to play the most ridiculous game I have ever seen, where you have to try and run a race by pressing buttons that move the character's calves and thighs separately. And the character has a floppy body that just wants to fall over. I'm sure you can imagine how much fun that is. XD (If you can't, or if you are just masochistic, you can play the game yourself here.)
torachan: (Default)
I only posted part of what I had the other day because I got tired of writing things up. This is all fun stuff! Yay!

[community profile] white_lotus is running a Lunar New Year Exchange. Signups are open for about one more day, til 11.59PM GMT on November 29th. The stories aren't due until the end of January, so that gives a good amount of time to work, even if you're swamped with December exchange fics (or just December holidays). There's also a treats post where anyone can leave prompts whether or not they're participating. I left one asking for transfic, and will be poking around to see if anything inspires me, but I don't think I'll be signing up for the exchange itself.

[ profile] keraha: [Sculpey] Frank and Gerard, WIP photos
These are actually from a couple years ago but someone posted the link on [community profile] fanart_recs recently and omg they are so adorable! It's scupley (clay) figures of Gerard and Frank from My Chemical Romance. Really, you should take a look even if you don't care at all for MCR because they are just really well made and really cute and I love all the little details. I am in awe.

This Isn’t How I Remember It…
OMG This is the most lolarious Star Wars fanart I have ever seen. What is this!? XD (And haha, I think I actually know who the artist is, too! TPM peeps, that is Fuumin's work, isn't it?) [Also, this is one of the boringest Cheezburger Network sites I have seen. I browsed through after being linked to this and hardly anything else was even funny.]

Dam You Autocorrect
This site is funny, though! If you haven't seen it yet, you should definitely take a look. If you don't have an iPhone (or other smartphone?), apparently they have a rather zealous autocorrect feature that you have to be careful of. One of my favorites is that it seems to consistently correct "a call" to "anal". XD

STFU, Believers
This site is not funny, per se (more headdesky, IMO), but it's somewhere people repost stuff obsessive Christians post on Facebook. I could definitely relate, seeing as I had to hide someone whose every status update (multiple times a day) was Jesus this and the Lord that. D:

'American Talk' With Josh Horowitz And The 'Harry Potter' Cast
OMG the Harry Potter kids doing American accents. This is awesome! XD

xkcd with guest artist Zach Weiner of SMBC
Ahahahaha! This is so great. I don't read xkcd regularly anymore, but I love this one. Be sure to click on all the exhibits.

Hark! A Vagrant - Let Him Answer to Javert
These are all hilarious, but my favorite, of course, is "Javert is in slash fiction". XD XD XD


Nov. 27th, 2010 12:01 am
torachan: (Default)
Dr. Daniel Medalie performs FtM top surgery
Wow, this is a really neat video. Not for the squeamish, obviously, since it's a video of actual surgery, but I really liked watching it. It was much easier to understand exactly what goes on than just reading about it and seeing post-op photos. (Also, oddly enough, it made me less anxious about the idea, though with my weight and lack of money I doubt I will ever get surgery anyway.)

Shakesville: Savage Advice
Just in case you forgot, Dan Savage is still a complete and utter asshole. This time he tells a woman who was recently sexually assaulted that she's "a total shit" for not being able to have sex with her husband. And while I'm at it, I see I never linked this video where he's a transphobic tool over here, just on tumblr.

The Rotund: The Falsehood of Individual Liberation, the Last Acceptable Prejudice, and Oppression Hierarchies; Why We Need Intersectionality
On why it's never a good idea to say "X is the last acceptable prejudice" (in this case talking about fat hate, but I've seen people say it about just about everything).

[ profile] racebending: Racebending and appropriation in Hawaii 5-0
Good post about Hawaii 5-0 and the fact that there are hardly any actual Hawaiians on the show.

A Deeper Country: Bird brains
Great observances on how when discussing how neurotypical and autistic people interact, any failure to communicate will be blamed on the autistic person.

Autist's Corner: Doubly Deviant: On Being Queer and Autistic
Reading this made me think of all the people in fandom/online in general who say that anyone who is X and Y and Z is obviously just trying to be a special snowflake. You only get one "not normal" label, apparently. Anything more is just you looking for attention.

Fannie's Room: Breaking: Boys and Girls Are Inherently Different, Except When Boys Prove Worse At Stuff
"On the one hand, they peddle the myth of sex/gender complementarity by, for instance, claiming that two men or two women should not be parents because each child needs a male and a female parent. But, when boys or men are found to have negative outcomes in a given situation, these same folks readily leap to alternative, non-biological and non-gender-essentialist explanations for these disparities, rather than following their own reasoning that these disparities can be explained by all of the inherent differences between the sexes they allege exist."

Colorlines: "Privilege Denying Dude" and the Fight for the Right to Snark
There have been quite a few posts about Privilege Denying Dude, but this was my favorite, especially since it's got an interview with the creator. And although PDD was kicked off tumblr and then off blogspot as well, it's now back in pog form as fyeahpriviledgedenyingdude, with a user-submitted photo so it can't get yanked for copyright violation before. The guy who submitted his photo has that obnoxious smug look down pat.

[personal profile] urocyon: Quickie: Columnist fail
Winning caption for a photo contest:
Indian # 1: We make big wampum from casino one day…
Indian # 2: We make even bigger wampum when we go into liquor store business…
Indian # 3: Shhhhh! Don’t say anything until he’s finished signing…
Yep, totally post-racial society we're living in. No sign of racism here.

Tranarchy: Not Your Mom's Trans 101
"The temptation, therefore, is to “dumb things down” for the benefit of a cisgender audience. This situation has given rise to a set of oversimplifications collectively known as “Trans 101.” These rather absurd tropes, such as “blank trapped in a blank’s body” cause confusion among even well-meaning cis folks, feed internalized transphobia among us trans people, and provide endless straw-man fodder for transphobic ‘radical feminists,’ entitled cisgender academics, and other bigots.

"Near the beginning of my transition, I myself taught “Trans 101” this way. Because I didn’t know any better. Because I had been taught to think of myself in terms of these same useless tropes, as an “FTM,” as a “female man,” as somebody who was “changing sexes.” Eventually, through a lot of intense discussions and a lot of tough love from people who were more knowledgeable, more radical, and more politically sophisticated than myself, I came to see things very differently."


Nov. 10th, 2010 09:13 pm
torachan: (Default)
Hmm, I've let stuff pile up a bit and now a lot of this seems very old and linked all over. Oh well.

[personal profile] facetofcathy: Schröedinger's Authors
Very interesting observation about a J2 AU:
It also had, relentlessly, Jensen making judgments about all the women that added up to policing of their sexuality, sexual expression, gender presentation and physical shape and size. All this was politely phrased, even inside his head Jensen never called anyone a slut in so many words. But he does think athletic women are mannish and strippers are whores and having big breasts is better than small, but not if you show too much of them. And it goes on and on.


Then I thought about that rhythm and how relentless a cycle it was. I stopped being able to pretend that the voice I was hearing was really Jensen's. I lost all suspension of disbelief, and I felt like I was reading a transcription of the voices the author hears all the damn time. The voices that tell her she will never measure up, no matter what.

[personal profile] marina: The more things change
About how discussions of social justice issues in fandom have made a difference

[redirect profile] transfinite: deviantART, binarism, and transphobia
About DeviantArt forcing users to choose either male or female. Funnily enough, I'd just recently created a new DA account, because I finally logged into my old one to comment on something over there and realised wow, this is old, I need to change my name, gender, etc. and found that I was unable to change my name! Not my username, which was kyuuketsukirui and was fine, but the display name, which said Grace. Nowhere was there any option to change that. How ridiculous is that!? So I had to delete my account and start a new one. And then I thought, hey, maybe I should upload some art? And I didn't, because I never got around to it, but now I don't think I will (though I'll still keep the account for commenting purposes and being able to view stuff that's locked to the community).

[ profile] rachelmanija: Guest Dispatches: Los Angeles, CA
A short but neat post about what is awesome about LA. I love the first paragraph: "I'm not here to tell you that Los Angeles is a city of vapid Botoxed starlets, red carpets, Hollywood phonies, and shallow rich people driving Humvees through Beverly Hills. You know that already, and anyway I rarely encounter that world." This is so much how I feel. I don't recognise that LA. It's not my city. This is.

[ profile] nihilistic_kid: Copyright follies
Surely by now everyone has heard about the editor of a cooking magazine who took content off the web and reprinted it, and when challenged about it, said the original writer should pay her. My favorite part is how the editor claimed the original article was riddled with errors, but apparently totally could not understand the part where the original article contained recipes written in the 14th and 16th centuries and that those weren't errors; that was how people spelled things back then!

The People You Meet When You Write About Rape.
From Mr. What About The Men to Ms. Fashion Police, it's the folks who pop up without fail on posts about rape.

#48 Les Sapeurs: Gentlemen of the Congo–Guest Blog by Eccentric Yoruba
A neat post about dandies in Africa.

Welcome to the 50s Housewife Experiment
Warning: this will suck you in! A woman decides to be a '50s housewife for two weeks, complete with meals directly from period cookbooks. Don't miss the asparagus meat mold!

My son is gay
"Or he's not. I don't care. He is still my son. And he is 5. And I am his mother. And if you have a problem with anything mentioned above, I don't want to know you." About a mom who's son wanted to dress up as Daphne from Scooby-Doo for Halloween, and the other mothers whose concern trolling was nothing more than bullying.

Male, female or neither? Gender identity debated at same-sex colleges
About trans and genderqueer students at same-sex colleges. It's a good article in many ways, but I always have mixed feelings about this subject. The article talks about students who applied as the "right" gender for the school and later decided to transition or identify as something other than their assigned gender, but in articles like this and posts by guys who went/are going to women's colleges (of which there are quite a few), there's never any discussion of, for example, trans girls who might like to go to women's colleges. Would they be let in? Possibly if they were lucky enough to transition very young with parental support and had been on hormones and had their name/gender officially changed, but what about a young woman who doesn't have that parental support or the opportunity to transition in high school or younger? Going to a women's college could be just what they need, but I think there's be a lot of panic over the idea. I don't think trans men in women's spaces can ever be separated from the exclusion of trans women from such spaces, because they almost always go hand-in-hand.

And speaking of trans people, I came across the most vile blog the other day. I'm not linking it, because I really do not want this woman finding her way back here, but if you're curious, you can google "the dirt from dirt" and it'll be the first hit. This blog is run by a butch lesbian and is devoted to hating on trans people. Her rhetoric is nothing new, but what really turned my stomach was that she does a weekly post of "who's transitioning" where she posts photos of guys from youtube so she and her followers can rant about how horrible these "beautiful girls" are for mutilating themselves and following this "dangerous, female murderous, trend". It's amazing how so much of what people like this say sounds exactly like conservative Christians.

Moving on to happier things, once again we end with some art and photos and stuff:

1. A few weeks ago on Sinfest, Squigley wandered through a magic door and found himself in a strange land where he encountered Doraemon and Nobita, Lum, Goku and Piccolo, Godzilla, Gundam, and Totoro, and everything was in Japanese. This is one of the Sunday color ones and it's really great (and fun)!

2. [ profile] sadynax has Halloween Holmes & Watson (Granada, RDJ, and Sherlock), plus this beautiful Harry Potter/Holmes crossover (Sherlock, John, and Jude!Watson and RDJ!Holmes). Look at them all in their wee house scarves!

3. Cutest puppies ever.

4. The demicolon is a versatile (if a bit showy) punctuation tool.

5. The 100 Best Signs At The Rally To Restore Sanity And/Or Fear. My favorite is the second one down (which is parodying this ad by Christine O'Donnell).

6. Vintage Star Wars travel posters. These are not actually vintage, but rather art pieces designed to look like vintage travel posters, featuring Star Wars locations.


Oct. 30th, 2010 11:28 pm
torachan: (Default)
[personal profile] marina: IDK IDK my bff Stirlitz
Really interesting post about Chekhov, and Star Trek in general:
But there's a deeper, bigger problem I have with Chekov. Because if I want to stay true to the canon, or even the spirit of the canon of the movie, then we're living in a utopia where the USA is the most powerful and at the same time most wonderful country in the world. With almost every other character this fact can be ignored, in their own POV, but with Chekov that's impossible, because he's so clearly an immigrant/expat/visitor on the Starship USAland. And maaaan, I can't write that. I can't wrap my mind around a world where this would be true, and I don't want to contribute to the illusions of others. It is somehow vital for me to not contribute to the perception that the US can rule the world - economically, culturally, you name it - and be a benevolent ruler under whose tutelage the Earth knows nothing but peace.

[personal profile] bethbethbeth: Why isn't 2010 the Thirteen Year HP Shipper Anniversary year?
Interesting discussion about when/why Harry Potter really exploded as a fandom.

The Meaning of Halloween-Candy Psychopath Stories
Talking about the urban legends of poisoned candy and how that's resulted in a shift from homemade treats to prepackaged candy. There are also two other Halloween-related articles linked from that one.

Google "Male Privilege" and In which we betray our gender are both posts about a recent incident when Kate Beaton of Hark! A Vagrant complained on Twitter about the creepy comments she gets from a lot of guys. Definitely worth reading, but mainly what struck me reading the articles and comments was that while I can see her point about the comments seeming creepy in that context, I'm so used to fandom that I probably would never have twigged to that on my own. "I want to marry you and have your babies" is a pretty normal thing to hear in fandom, often from one woman to another, neither of whom know what the other looks like. (Which is not to say that some people in fandom might not be comfortable with that sort of thing, either, but it is definitely part of the culture of this area of fandom.)

Transgender Law Center Investigating Offensive Letter from DMV Employee
This is appalling and scary. A woman went to the DMV to change her ID and then a few days later "received a letter from the person who had processed her name change at the DMV. In the letter, which had been mailed to her at home, the DMV employee quoted from the Bible and stated that Amber had made a "very evil decision." The strongly-worded letter told Amber that she was "an abomination" and said that homosexuals should be put to death." O_O

The Story Gains a Villain (Kind of)
Speaking of people who think trans people are abominations, this one is about Glenn Beck. So, apparently David Malki! of Wondermark, Ryan North of Dinosaur Comics, and someone else I haven't heard of decided to make a book of short stories based on an old Dinosaur Comic about a world where everyone knows how they're going to die. The book is called Machine of Death and it went to #1 on Amazon its first day. This also happened to be the day a new Glenn Beck book was released, and he was only at #3, which so enraged him that he ranted about how this was proof of a liberal "culture of death" that's threatening to take over America. This is pretty much the awesomest story I've read all week. That book is definitely going on my wishlist now.

Towards a Steampunk Without Steam
I submit that the insistence on Victoriana in steampunk is akin to insisting on castles and European dragons in fantasy: limiting, and rather missing the point. It confuses cause and consequence, since it is fantasy that shapes the dragon, not the dragon that shapes the fantasy. I want the cogs and copper to be acknowledged as products, not producers, of steampunk, and to unpack all the possibilities within it.

And finally, a couple funny things to end with:

1. Wallace Wells as Astro Boy (as drawn by Bryan Lee O'Malley himself)
2. Flying Cars and You (the airplane going "sup, lol" made me actually laugh out loud)


Oct. 23rd, 2010 02:54 am
torachan: (Default)
Oops, I seem to have collected a lot of stuff and then not posted it, so I ended up pruning my links and taking out a bunch of stuff that later showed up on [community profile] metafandom (mainly about that female character flowchart, although [personal profile] inkstone had a good links roundup that leads to several other posts with more links).

But before I get to the linkspam, I want to talk about something I came across on tumblr earlier tonight: Brave Beyond Belief. It is a tumblr celebrating the bravery of trans men. In a really creepy, fetishistic, othering way (and of course no mention of trans women or people who fall outside the gender binary, who I guess are not brave like trans men, probably because the site owner isn't hot for them).

Here's an excerpt of their site info:
You may not THINK you know one of these guys but I bet you really do…

He’s probably the quiet guy in the corner with the bright eyes that finds it hard to hold your gaze because he’s wondering what you’re thinking of him. He’s the loving friend who helps you pick up the pieces after the latest jerk in your life has let you down. He’s the son who no matter his age needs his mother’s love desperately. He’s the man who longs to be an incredible husband and father…and trust me, he WILL NOT take that responsibility lightly. He’s that great guy in your office who always remembers to bring coffee to the ladies; who opens doors, pulls out chairs, leaves the front parking spaces and sympathizes when our bodies betray us every month. Why? Because his has betrayed him every day of his life.

The FTM community is comprised of some of THE MOST amazing men on the planet. I have been INCREDIBLY blessed to have known and loved a struggling member of that community and this is my way of channeling all the love and admiration I have left over for him and the experience of having had him in my life.

I reblogged it with my own response, which I'll also crosspost here:
I actually find this extremely othering and fetishising. So-called "positive" stereotypes (Asians are good at math, black guys have huge dicks, women are nurturers, etc.) are still stereotypes and they are still damaging.

Trans guys are not a monolith. Trans guys are no more inherently understanding of women than cis guys. (In fact many trans guys embrace misogyny as a way of emphasising their masculinity.)

This "trans men are better than real cis men" meme has to stop. Putting a group of people on a pedestal may seem like a positive thing to do, but what it means is that you’re not seeing them as real people, as individuals.

I'm also uncomfortable with the heteronormativity here. Not all trans men are interested in women. Not all want to get married or have children.

Finally, it really bothers me to see trans men held up as so brave and so wonderful while ignoring the existence of trans women and people who fall outside the gender binary. If you truly cared about trans people and believed they were "brave beyond belief", why not make your tumblr about all trans people?

(Though I would probably still feel uncomfortable about the site even if it was inclusive, simply because I find the whole "omg you're so ~brave~!" thing to be...patronising? I think there must be other, better ways to show support than this.)

And now, on to the linkspam!

Feminism, queer stuff, racism, and more! )


Oct. 10th, 2010 11:10 pm
torachan: (Default)
Steam-Powered: Lesbian Steampunk Stories looks like it could be an interesting anthology.

[personal profile] zvi: Critical Discussion is for Everyone
I like how she talks about how critical discussion is devalued in fandom. That often goes for discussion of canon sources, too, of course, but it is especially true of fanworks. It's not seen as an acceptable way of engaging fannishly, but rather framed as being mean to the author or trying to ruin fandom.

There were several interesting posts about commenting on AO3 and whether or not it was getting a lower hit/comment ratio than other archives, as well as what the etiquette is for replying to comments there.

[personal profile] auburn: AO3 comments
[personal profile] icarus: Riffing off of Auburn's post: AOOO comments

And as people were talking about AO3, the issue of the recent download feature came up and there were some good posts about that, too:

[personal profile] anatsuno: Open your eyes
[personal profile] telesilla: Uphill. Both ways. In the snow.

And here's some stuff about TV:

Save The ABC Family Show Huge
A petition to save Huge from being cancelled. This show is so awesome, guys! It's a show where fat people are presented as having the same interests and problems and romances as other people, where they don't just exist to be the butt of the joke. It has queer characters and characters of color and passes the Bechdel test every episode. I will be so sad if this really does get cancelled.

[personal profile] mrinalinee: Racism: so hilarious
Another post about Outsourced. Not really much new and different from other posts I've linked, but I've seen people saying things like "anyone who isn't Indian who doesn't like Outsourced is just using racism as an excuse!" so I feel it's especially important to link criticisms by Indians.

Connecting with female characters in geek television
Interesting article about female-character bashing.

And here's some trans/intersex/queer stuff:

Talking about the Standard Trans Narrative and the expectations that of course you're going to get surgery or whatever. (I talked about this a bit on my tumblr the other day, too, though not in response to this post.)

"genitals as signifiers": when birth is a "social emergency"
This talks about the book Fixing Sex: Intersex, Medical Authority, and Lived Experience, which sounds really interesting (as is the post itself).

Make It Better Project
I have been uncomfortable with the It Gets Better Project for many reasons, not just because it was started by Dan Savage (although as I said elsewhere, I think the that the fact that it is Dan Savage is objectively part of the problem, because the same self-centered privilege that allows him to be blithely racist, transphobic, biphobic, misogynist, etc. is what allows him to make this video assuming everyone is just like him and things will automatically "get better"). Anyway, this project was made in response and is about taking action to make things better now, rather than just waiting around and hoping things magically get better on their own.

And here's some stuff about other stuff!

I think everyone has already seen the xkcd map of the internet, but I'll link it anyway. There's Maru Bay! And Dreamwidth is on there as a tiny island off the shore of LiveJournal.

I love this A Softer World so much. Don't miss the mouseover!

[community profile] fanart_recs is a new multifandom recs comm for fanart! I have signed up to rec Sherlock Holmes art next month. :D Maybe then I will stop spamming you guys with art like this drawing of Sherlock and John as squirrels by [ profile] feriowind (or maybe not). Look at John's wee sweater!


Sep. 27th, 2010 05:24 pm
torachan: (Default)
The heat has sapped my will to do anything. D: It's finally cooling off, but the house is still so hot. ;_;

[personal profile] giandujakiss: So Brad DeLong has kind of a brilliant post
So apparently some professor who makes like half a million dollars a year wrote a post complaining about how he's not rich and is just scraping by. This post has a good round-up and links to essays in response to that.

[personal profile] deepad: Dirt I Can Lay Claim To
Links to lots of good posts about assimilation and immigration in response to Elizabeth Moon (ha, I typed Bear at first).

Let's end the great gender lie
This article is by Cordelia Fine, whose awesome book Delusions of Gender I'm reading right now.
When among our group of friends the second crop of children came, a common question was, "Are they different?" Of course, the answer was always yes. But while the parent of two sons or two daughters would answer by talking lengthily about the unique, idiosyncratic personalities that made up the essence of Jack-ness or Sarah-ness, parents with one of each, I noticed, would often say instead, "Oh yes. Boys and girls are so different."

[personal profile] 6degreesforbandfemslash is an awesome comm created as part of [community profile] ladiesbigbang.
The purpose of this project is to encourage the writing of femslash in bandom by presenting a wide array of women who fit under the umbrella "bandom" to use as characters. For fun and excitement, we have structured it as a game of six degrees of separation, starting with Vicky-T (of Cobra Starship). You can imagine it like a big party, and this is the list of who invited whom, and who is introducing a woman to another.

Russia in color, a century ago
I actually saw these linked a bunch a few weeks or a month ago and didn't click until just recently, but wow, these are amazing. This photographer used a technique where he took three b&w photos in quick succession using a different color filter for each, and then combined them to make color photos. These don't look like those colorised photos you sometimes see; they look like actual color pictures (although in several where people moved while he was shooting, you can see the different overlays). For me, looking at historical stuff in color makes it feel more real somehow, or more...relatable? idk.

Tree House Pictures: Play-Club Plans to Big-Kid Houses
These are pictures of tree houses that are real houses and they are so cool!

20 Brilliant Bookcases
Also very cool are these funky bookcases. However, they did not include my absolute favorite, the stair bookcase.

In Blind Pursuit of Racial Equality?
"Despite good intentions to promote egalitarianism through colorblindness, our findings show that doing so sometimes elicits the exact opposite outcome, permitting even explicit forms of racial discrimination to go undetected and unaddressed," said Apfelbaum. "Perhaps most alarming, on the surface, colorblindness appears to work quite well—reported incidents of bias do decrease. In spite of such encouraging signs, however, our study suggests that colorblindness may not reduce bias as much as it adjusts the lens through which bias is perceived."

A nice antidote to those posts that are all "woe, there are too many books about girls! The poor boys have nothing to read!"
I’m not saying that we shouldn’t be working harder to improve boys’ literacy. Quite the opposite.


I suggest that perhaps what we ought to consider is the presentation and the representation of the female author, because—and I speak from hard experience here—a female author is simply marketed and presented differently.


Perhaps we still need to consider the fact that female stories are consistently undervalued, labeled as “commercial,” “light,” “fluffy,” and “breezy,” even if they are about the very same topics that a man might write about.

This is why your TV is fat: Q & A with Savannah Dooley
Eeeeeeee! Okay, I really love this woman! This is the woman behind the TV version of Huge. Now, after I took a look at the original book on Amazon and realised that pretty much every good thing about the show came not from the book but from the TV people, I had a lot of respect for them for taking something bad and making something so good out of it. But after reading this interview, I love her even more.

And here's some stuff that's amused me recently:

Maru and the Amazon box and the sequel. ETA: And today's sequel to the sequel!

[ profile] sadynax has a fun Sherlock Holmes mix-and-match character meme (done with chibi sketches, of course). I love her art so much! *_*

Sunday Sweets on Cake Wrecks was cartoon cakes and there's some really amazing stuff in there.

Today's Penny Arcade made me laugh out loud so many times. "Where are they finding these savings!?" XD


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