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so the supervisor i normally get along with made a gay/disabled joke today. referred to california as "the land of fruits and nuts" - look at all the queers and crazies they've got over there, isn't it weird? we definitely don't have any of those here. we're /normal/ here.
fuck.
*rubs eyes*
I need this job. I need health insurance or I will die. I need to be able to get therapy, I need to be able to buy meds, I need to be able to fix my teeth. I have bills. This is my first engineering job - if I fuck this up, I'll be pretty damn fucked for a while.
It's legal to be fired for homosexuality in this state.
I need this job.
And that means not picking fights with supervisors who seem to like me otherwise. That means not rocking the boat, at least not until I can be sure that I'm not gonna get thrown overboard for it. That means smiling and playing along nicely and goddamn it
I feel like I coward. Don't I have a duty to my siblings? Don't I have a duty to confront this shit where I find it? If I let is slide, aren't I a part of the problem?
Fuck.
Okay.  Options.
1. Talk to him about it. Risk outing myself. Come off as "over sensitive" and no fun, make him like me less. Lower my chances of getting a permanent slot.
2. Anon note to HR. Worst case: he gets taken out and the department is given over to the angry sexist I like even less.
3. Keep my mouth shut. Don't smile at his jokes but don't call him out on them either. Don't come out at work, don't talk about queer friends. Pretend it never happened and stay safe.

Fuck.  The world is supposed to be better now. These kinds of calculations shouldn't be necessary.

People talk about "passing priviledge"  like it isn't a different kind of torture. like I don't have to deal with people who wink and say one way or another "you're one of us, after all, you're on /our/ side."  They feel /safe/ with me, they feel /open./

I mean. I know. I don't have to risk direct violence on my person. I have a /chance/ at jobs, at housing, at survival. But only if no one finds out, only if I keep the truth of what I am buried deep inside my chest and never let it out.

It would be easier if I was brave enough to burn my bridges. There are times I wish I was more visibly queer, more visibly disabled, more obviously /other/ so that this would stop happening. So that i wouldn't have to /choose/ between honesty and survival. Yeah, I'd still be fucked, but at least I wouldn't have done it to myself.

(it feels like there's a monster buried in my chest, something pounding at my rib cage. If people see they'll put me down like the beast I am, so I have to keep it locked away.

sometimes I wish the monstrosity was on the outside, where everyone could see. Maybe I'd die but at least I'd be free for a little while. At least it would be /over/, instead of this terrified waiting. The sword's gonna drop, one day or another, and it's so exhausting waiting for it.)
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writing is therapy for me. writing is how i understand myself. posting is a way of making those understandings real, proving that i did it through the reaction of others and gaining new understanding through communication and discussion.

why the fuck should i let other people dictate the terms of my healing?

and yet. there's still the voice in my head: what if your healing hurts others, what if you're just making excuses, what if you just tried harder, what if, what if.

(sometimes it feels like i'm being torn apart.)



all right.

let's set some points here.

1. i do not do things lightly. I consider things, i think through them, I analyze why I do and feel things. I have been told this by people who are not prone to lying. I am as confident of this as I am of any facet of my personality.

    1.a. thus "yes it's an unfortunate pattern but it's okay for me" is unlikely to be an excuse. I do the analysis and the underpinning and the work.

    1.b. remember, excuses only work because they could be true.

2. Emotional responses are what they are. They are not good or bad or wrong or right. Likewise, identification with a character is what it is.

    2.a. thus: I do not have to allow anyone else to set the limits of my identity. I am do     not have to allow someone else to determine what is or is not meaningful to me

    2.b. personal symbolism is /personal/. personal meaning is /personal/.

3. Monsters are monsters because they are selfish. Because they put their own desires above what other people need. Because they don't care about others.

    3.a. however; sometimes you need to be selfish. sometimes you have to put yourself first. sometimes you have to stop caring.

    3.b. i am not obligated to set myself on fire to keep other people warm. especially not if they have blankets, not if there are other ways for them to keep warm.

    3.c. i am allowed to put myself first


i don't know if it'll be as clear and stable as this in an week or an hour.

but right now this feel real and true, and that's enough. that might be all i ever get, so it's gonna have to be.

(I am allowed to trust myself.)
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I'm sleep depped and it's been a bad brain week (of the "self harm via upsetting blog posts" variety) and last night I went through a spat of "oh hey look it's someone who thinks darkfic directly causes sexual assault let's read their blog for a half hour" and, well, that was that. Thankfully Nen was online to talk me through the inevitable anxiety attack and sick feeling in my stomach.

But it's still in the back of my mind, and I think I have some Thoughts about it.  So, here we go. Also, writing these out makes me feel better.
My first instinct this morning was to pull out a particular selection of music - alice cooper, Lordi, avenge sevenfold, that kind of thing.  Darkness and power, glory and domination, sexualized violence and violent sexuality. Fear me. Worship me. Hallowed be my name.

And then I stopped and thought - okay, so /why/ is that comforting to me? It would make moralizers clutch their pearls and gasp, sure, but that's not all. It - makes me feel better about myself, takes away some of the sickness in my throat.

And I thought - I want to feel powerful. I want to feel untouchable.  I will be the storm, the desert, the conquering darkness and the stain of blood. If I'm going to be a monster, then I want to be the /best/.

(There's a reason I identify with Kylo Ren as strongly as I do.)

It's not something I feel all the time. It's not someone I want to be in real life. But it's there when I need it.



But, the thing is....  this isn't something that girls are... supposed to feel. I know that's an awful way of phrasing it, but it's the only way I can think to say it. Girls don't want darkness, don't feel like the world only makes sense when they're at war. Girls don't feel the sick urge for violence crawling up their throat, addicted to the rush of power. Women don't identify with characters like that. Women identify with women before they identify with /monsters/.

The people who /do/ identify with monsters, who are expected to, who are Supposed to be those types -They're shitty straight white boys. I think I called him That Guy once - the Health Ledger Joker fanboy, the Tyler Durden fanboy, who collects guns and is way too interested in serial killers and nazis. Entitled boys who think they deserve the world and throw tantrums when they don't. The insecure nerd with dark eyeliner and prop weapons.

Girls don't /do/ that.

And then there's me.

It makes me feel guilty. Like I'm... failing some feminist duty or some shit, identifying with the people everyone else calls the enemy. Finding comfort in what some people call the worst parts of masculinity.

( It's - about the only thing that causes me dysmorphia, tbh. It's the one of the things convinced me that I was nb - the rush of /relief/ when I realized that I didn't have to identify with women above all else, that I didn't have to identify primarily on lines of gender. I didn't have to pretend that I had something in common with them just because we share genitals.

I honestly don't know if that's a me problem or a them problem. Is it a shitty definition of womanhood or am I not really a woman? I have no idea.) 

Feminism doesn't get it, it feels like. Social justice doesn't get it.

25 years and I still exist in a different world. No matter how much they talk about acceptance and redefining womanhood, their definitions still don't have words for me.  I'm still the thing from beyond their universe, warping things beyond recognition simply by being around them.

(If I were a monster, I wouldn't /care/.)


I - as usual, I don't have a solution. I've just named the problem. It's just so - well, frustrating on a good day, to see this total breach of experience that no one on their side seems to see.

I don't know if I've made any progress. But I've articulated myself, at least kind of. So there's that.
splinteredstar: (Default)
conclusions:

I love everyone in this bar.

Woo, moral ambiguity of war! I like this tone. Absolutely not a kids movie, but I think it fits within Star Wars. This is the kind of story I love, honestly - behind the scenes, in between the scenes in the larger narrative. This feels like the kind of Star Wars I would write, tbh.

Bohdi is a goddamn delight and probaby my favorite. That or Chirrut. Hard to pick.

Chirrut and Baze are totally married.

I've been on the "the death star is an analogy for nuclear weapons" train since TFA, but it was nice to see the explicit imagey used.

Note on Bohdi - his value is not in his violence. His value is not in his bloodline. His value is in knowing something, and making sure that it's able to get to the right place. His skills and his contribution is in /knowing how things work/ and being able to transfer that knowledge. He is not a warrior, and he is not violent, and that /matters/.

Same for Galen. Galen matters because he was an engineer, because he was useful and valuable and knew that, and built a weapon with a weakness in it. He helped save the galaxy - not by building a better weapon, but by breaking one.

A note on both of those characters, by the way - they were only able to do what they did because they /played along/. Same with Chirrut. if they - any of them, Galen especially - had fought back, gone down in flames in some big Symbolic Gesture, confronted the Empire Directly - they would have been killed, and the empire wouldn't have noticed.

But instead they lied, and survived, and stayed alive because staying alive mattered. Bohdi didn't drive his ship into a star rather than support the empire. Galen didn't swallow a blaster barrel or space himself, or try to shoot Kennic.

And if they had, even more people would have died.

They fought with schematics and skills and /information/, and that allowed them to win and save lives.

(here is a lesson: we can't fight the government with guns. The government will always have bigger and better guns. We fight with /knowledge/.

Be willing to die for your cause, but be willing to live for it too, and only die when it /matters/.)


 
splinteredstar: (Sebastian)
this is re: something I just reblogged and some general culture.  as always, not at anyone on here in particular

cut for abuse mention )
splinteredstar: (Default)
may as well do one of these this year. no obligation

Step One:
Make an post. It can be public or friends only, whatever you’re most comfortable with. The post should contain your list of ten holiday wishes, and these wishes can be anything - from simple (a fan fiction written about your favorite pairing), to medium (a DVD you want), to really extravagant (a brand new laptop or car).

Just make sure these are wishes for things you really truly want.

Step Two:
Skim through your friends list and see who has posted their own wish lists. Then - and this is the most important part - if you find a wish you can grant, and it’s in your heart to do so, make sure that person’s wish comes true.

Sometimes a person’s trash is another person’s treasure. If you have a leather jacket you don’t want or a gift certificate you’re never going to use, give it to someone who wants it.

Step Three:
Post this wish list any time after November 1st.
You needn't spend money on these wishes unless you want to. The point isn't to put people out, it's to provide everyone a chance to be someone else's holiday fairy - to spread the joy.
Gifts can be made anonymously or not, it's your call.
There are no rules with this project, no guarantees, and no strings attached. Just...wish, and it might come true. Give, and you might receive. And you'll have the joy of knowing you made someone's holiday special.


list )
splinteredstar: (Kimbley)
I am getting sick of the whole "identity politics vs rural america" narrative

Let me talk about my area. I live a quarter mile away from two different cornfields. I drive past four different cow pastures on my way to work, and I don't know how many farms. My area does not have a Starbucks - according to google the nearest is an hour away. My town does not have a /Walmart/.

Do you know what /else/ we don't have? Public transportation. Voter's advocacy groups. Planned Parenthood offices (the nearest place that does in house abortions is at least two hours away, and may be up to five hours away.) Veteran's Affairs offices. An economy based on more than coal and farming. In some places, reliable internet and phone services.

There are actual infrastructure problems in rural America. But you will note that /none/ of the things I mentioned are fixed by "well maybe if we talked less about brown people". Because trust me, there are brown people here too. There are four latinix families on my street and I frankly am /terrified/ for their sake because you know what? We don't have any immigrant advocacy groups here either.

If you wanna talk heartland politics, /that/ is the shit you need to be addressing. Not any of this "let's pretend to be conservative so that white people will vote for us" bullshit.
splinteredstar: (Default)

So. This week happened, apparently. 

 

Read more... )

 

splinteredstar: (Default)
It is.... maybe 60% of a fic. Ish.

I reread Witches Abroad this week and I all I really wanted is painful family fic with granny weatherwax and her sister. I realized I would have to write it myself, and I had some images, so I wrote it.

This is... most of a fic. I'm posting it to show people, tbh. There are chunks missing, and I'm not sure how the character development will work, but. Hey. I wrote.... 1700 words in the span of 8 hours, and that's not bad.

(features character death, of a sort.) 


mirror magic )




splinteredstar: (Default)
rough draft of a fic for a prompt on tumblr

Nothing grows on Jakku. Nothing is produced here, there’s no industry, hardly any native species. Everything here is something that was thrown away.

 

Read more... )
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I think the way we (in fandom, and social justice, and trauma recovery) talk about safe spaces is.... unhelpful.


Read more... )

splinteredstar: (Default)
it's just. digital book burning is still book burning.
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I've been thinking about moral policing lately.

Well, okay. I was triggered because someone didn't fucking tag their ao3 discourse and now I kind of want to die. But I'm writing instead. or trying to.

the first argument: writing about things is as bad as doing them. writing abuse means you're an abuser. writing about things means you support them.

rebuttal: fascination is not support. fiction is not reality. while fiction does influence reality, it is difficult to measure the cause and effect. studies have gone both ways. also: fandom is not the social force that larger media is. my fic is not a blockbuster movie or a bestselling novel. measurable harm vs measurable good

second argument: children can be harmed by finding this

rebuttal:  children understand warning signs. as a child i was not harmed by finding darkfic. it was a minor part of my media consumption, and one that ultimately helped me

third argument: removing these works and preventing them from being released is the best way to improve society and protect people

rebuttal, part a: things done to protect people should be treated with suspicion. i lived through the bush era. freedom and protection are always inverses of each other

rebuttal part b: it is ultimately ineffective. these things are symptoms. repression is less effective than exploration. writing is a means of exploring the self, and that should always be allowed


....i think this actually helped. huh.
splinteredstar: (Default)
sometimes, I'll get a line of prose in my head and absolutely nothing else - no context, no reasoning. It's like I'm handed the summary of a story that I'm gonna have to write myself.

"Every revolutionary is secretly a blasphemer."

...I'm not sure where it'll go - I can think of about seven characters that could suit (I think I was thinking of Cyrus at the time? or working on his playlist) - but i'm intrigued.  Might be a new oc, tbh.


(to overthrow the authority that fate or divine right has place above you, to demand more than you have been given - to look at the world you have been placed in and say "i can do /better/" - what gall! what glorious arrogance, to object to what fate has decreed for you!)
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but no, Shera. I don't even remember how old I was then - 12 or 13, I think. She was a YGO OC, who I paired up with Yami no Malik.  Yeah, the stabby one, with the hedgehog hair.  She was an assassin and a sadist and her - I think it was her face? - was burned and scarred from abuse. ...It might have been her back, I'm not sure. I don't think those files exist anywhere - if they were ever typed to begin with.

She was violent and soiciopathic and angry and she enjoyed blood and when Yami no Malik started developing goopy feelings at her she was deeply uncomfortable, because she did not sign up for /softness/, okay. 

....Every now and then, I look back at my younger self and think "...kaaaaay."  Like, I can see where she /came/ from, both culturally and in my brain, but. Still.


That part of my brain is one that I - still struggle with making peace with, sometimes. The part that glories in blood and violence and wreckless desctruction - the part that wants to burn the world, that wants to /break/. Rage, and anger, and pride, and control. Other people - don't matter, aren't really important. Break them if you want, it doesn't matter. It's a hunk of my psyche that - honestly frightens me, sometimes. But it's compelling, in the way monsters are.

(Also, it occurs to me that my taste in favorite characters - the terrible ones that I don't normally admit in public - makes a /lot/ more sense now. Give the monster a face, muzzle it by making it fictional - it can't hurt anyone, so it's safe to be fascinated.)
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I was rambling in the comments of someone's post on tumblr about fandom, and I think it's relevant to some of the things i've said here as well, so, pseudo cross post.


imo, fandom is one of those fundamental human needs - well, Stories are. Responding to stories and making them our own - claiming them in a way.

fandom, in one form or another, has been around for as long as we can look back. It's one of those basic /human/ things - defining ourselves through the Stories that we love.


(Pratchett, may his soul be held by any god who could find it, called it Narritivum, that building block of reality that says "this is how things go.")


stories are how we learn how to be people, and how to be a person.

and fandom, I think, is a means of taking control of that - of saying, "No, this is how things /should/ go." Of taking the stories that define you and reclaiming them for yourself - making them a part of you, rather than just something /around/ you

.....tl;dr I have a lot of emotions about fandom
splinteredstar: (Default)
...though it might be one day.

ya know, in fandom, I think there's a distinction between "enjoyable" and "personally meaningful" Or at least, there /should/ be.

There's a difference between things that are fun and things that are important, and I haven't seen it addressed.  There's a difference, between a fun romp for an afternoon and something that resonates in your chest and heart- between background noise in your brain and the something that slots into the empty places in your soul and makes you /stable/ in a way you weren't before.

For example: The Dresden Files are enjoyable. Discworld saved my fucking soul. There is a /difference/.

(And both kinds matter! One cannot live off emotional intensity alone; i have an entire section of fiction and music for those times when I don't want to feel anything.)

And I think it should be acknowledged, when talking about a piece's flaws, that there's a distinction? In defending one's attachment to a piece (or a fandom, or a ship, etc), rather.  "yes there's some icky bits but it's fun" and "yes there's some icky bits but it kept me alive when I wanted to die" are not the same statement, and they shouldn't be treated the same.

I've just been thinking about this, the last couple of days.

...I should sleep now.
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this is @kaleran‘s fault. also i wrote this instead of freaking out over a new job.
features: canonical character death, implied suicidal intent, grief, transubstantiation, angst, butterflies.
Once, Cosette remembers later, her Papa had told her about butterflies.


 

butterflies )

 

this might be a a complete fic, I'm not sure yet
splinteredstar: (Default)
ya know, the thing that annoys me the most about fandom pitting Finn and Kylo against each other in the Discourse (either in shipping or identification, you can only have one or the other) isn't just that it makes the fandom a less pleasant place to be, or that I (as someone who relates to and adores both of them) feel uncomfortable and vaguely guilty whenever the discourse crosses my dash.

it's that if I want to see any compare and contrast analysis for them, talking about mental illness or indoctrination or emotional abuse, that /doesn't/ end with one of them being the Correct resposne - if I want to see a fic that sets them against each other and forces them to learn and understand each other, shouting at each other about choice and destiny and freedom -

- I'm gonna have to write it my damn self.

 

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