quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
CURRENT FAVORITES:
The Glitch Mob, "Animus Vox"
Dirty Three, "Moon on the Land"
Dirty Three, "Rain Song"
Miike Snow, "Vase"
Retribution Gospel Choir, "The Stone (Revolution!)"
Shearwater, "Star of the Age"

Hope everyone had a great Easter/Passover! Our Easter weekend was pretty laid-back and not all that eventful; this afternoon we went to my aunt and uncle's house for Easter dinner, which included kielbasa, meat pie, babka bread, artichoke casserole, and a few other things (they also served deep-fried turkey and sweet potato casserole, but I didn't have those). My aunt and uncle also had a couple of their friends over; it's a bit rough whenever these friends come to their events because I'm supposed to act like I care about them even though I never see them anywhere else and I wouldn't hang out with them willingly, but things went pretty smoothly today. We also went to my dad's mom's house this evening to keep her company for a little bit, like we usually do whenever there's a holiday around. And on Friday my parents and I had dinner at Dusitra, the local Thai restaurant. Definitely one of the best meals I've had in a long time. The previous times we've been there, the food was okay but nothing to write home about; however, because the restaurant is under new management now, we decided to try it out again, and this time we certainly didn't regret it.

Nothing else all that interesting has been going on lately, so here's another quick linkdump:

--Fan-made Legend of Korra merchandise (YESPLZ 8DDDDDDDDDDDDDDD)

More under the cut... )



quadruplify: Gay pride parade participant, dressed as astronaut, holding sign that reads: "Gay Astronaut Association Members: 1" ([Other] LGBTQ+ - gay astronaut)
I need to go to bed somewhat early tonight, so I'll try to keep this short:

--Now that I've been off Tumblr for a while now, I've started to work my way through the backlog of movies I've been meaning to see for the longest time now. I don't have time to review each one, so I'll just list them:

Movies that were great:
Movies that sucked tremendously:

Guilty pleasures:
If you want me to explain why I classified these movies the way I did, feel free to ask me in the comments.

--I've slowly started taking steps to take on more independence and responsibility and deal with my depression in more proactive ways; I've been driving on a more regular basis, I've been doing my own laundry, and on Sunday I cooked my own dinner. Spinach linguini with cooked bell peppers, celery, and scallions, to be exact. I still needed some guidance, of course, and I charred the vegetables a little bit, but other than that it came out perfectly. XD Obviously many people already do these things on a regular basis and take them for granted, but these are little victories I need to relish however I can. ^_^;

I've also been going to different places in the area we haven't been to before; the weekend before last my dad and I went to Books & Co., a small used bookstore in Hamden, and we were very impressed by it! Sadly, there aren't a lot of indie bookstores in our area, so it was good to find one by chance and support it however we could. Most of the books there are mainstream/literary fiction, and they also sell greeting cards and jewelry made by local artists. Oh yeah, all the books they sell are half off list price, so if you want a good deal....8D I couldn't resist buying a few books while I was there (Assia Djebar's Children of the New World, Yukio Mishima's The Sailor Who Fell From Grace With the Sea, N. Scott Momaday's House Made of Dawn, and Ntozake Shange's Betsy Brown), and they served a great chai latte at their café too.

And last weekend we checked out Redscroll Records in Wallingford, which also turned out to be pretty great. It's a small store that focuses on alternative/metal/hardcore/punk (they even sell zines there, which isn't too surprising to me since I know there are people out there who still make them, but still), and lots of vinyl if you're into that sort of thing (my dad ended up finding records he hadn't seen for 30-40 years), but there is something for just about everyone there. (Hey [personal profile] two_grey_rooms, it's better than Cutler's, trust me. XD) I ended up buying Soundtracks by Can and the Zol! EP from BLK JKS, as well as two used DVDs -- The Fall and Fargo, the latter of which I rewatched recently and was just as awesome as I remembered it to be.

--So the first two episodes of The Legend of Korra came out this weekend. And it was AMAZING. And AWESOME. And all those other adjectives I like to overuse when I really, really enjoy something. XD No spoilers, but this GIF just about sums it up:



Ugh why do we have to wait another month for the new episodes to come out D:

Seriously though, if you haven't seen this already, you should, even if you aren't familiar with A:tLA or its fandom. If you missed it when it was online this weekend, leave me a comment and I'll see what I can do. ;-)

(BTW, glad to see Community is back on the air too! Wasn't too impressed with last week's episode, but here's hoping this week's will be better.)

--Some links that I think might be of interest to some of you:
--And finally, a meme I ganked from [livejournal.com profile] iron_valkyrie:

Which kind of bender are you? )


quadruplify: Julian Minci (from Legend of the Galactic Heroes) sticking his tongue out in disgust ([LoGH] Julian - yuck)
1. So I'm sure many of you know about that video about Ugandan warlord Joseph Kony produced by the NGO Invisible Children that went viral a couple of days ago (if you don't know what I'm talking about, look up "Kony 2012" on YouTube). The video has become quite a big deal, generating a lot of buzz and publicity in a remarkably short amount of time; I've seen many people on LJ, Twitter, and Facebook talk about it, so I felt it was necessary to do a post about it, much like the 2009 protests in Iran and last year's "Arab Spring." I would make a big linkdump about it, complete with pertinent quotes, but I've been feeling too lazy and tired to do one up this time, and besides, many people have already beaten me to it:

--[livejournal.com profile] eska_rina has put together a great assortment of links and relevant quotes
--[livejournal.com profile] ontd_political has its big compendium of links here; of particular interest is The Guardian's liveblog of the fallout
--The conveniently titled "Reader's digest to Kony 2012"

I know it may seem like a ton of links to deal with, each attached to rather long reads, but I highly, highly recommend you skim them at the very least. The issues, criticisms, and commentary Invisible Children's campaign has raised can't be neatly summed up in a quick soundbite, and it's very important to read up on the issues before you decide to donate money or engage in activism -- not just on this particular issue, but on everything else as well.

I personally find myself agreeing with the backlash against IC's campaign, and while I think #Kony2012 has good intentions, it has not been thought out very well. The campaign appears to ignore much of the context of the conflict in Uganda, such as how Kony and the LRA became prominent, the circumstances in which (and reasons why) it happened, and the legacy of European colonialism and imperialism that ultimately led such a situation to come about in the first place. The campaign also paints a picture of Uganda that is overly simplistic and reductive; it plays into the common media narrative of Africa being a place of nothing but war, starvation, and poverty, and that only Americans/the West/white people can "save" Africans from this predicament. Not only is this narrative rooted in the same kinds of ideas that led European powers to colonize Africa in the first place, but it's also extremely inaccurate, given that a variety of peoples and cultures exist on the continent, that there are already many organizations on the ground in areas affected by the LRA run by Africans themselves doing the work IC claims to be doing, and that many Africans -- some of whom have been directly affected by Kony's violence -- take issue with the campaign and suggest better ways of going about it. The fact that the campaign's promoters don't appear to be listening to the voices of Africans themselves, especially those of the people they're purporting to stand for, shows how paternalistic it really is, and how it's nothing more than "Kony is evil, he used child soldiers, he must be brought to justice." Obviously Kony is evil and needs to be brought to justice, but if you think about the "nuts and bolts" of how to do it, and the consequences it might bring, then you realize just how good intentions aren't enough.

Obviously these criticisms shouldn't be an excuse to dismiss #Kony2012 as an exercise in feel-good activism targeting American college students; human rights violations are an affront to all of humanity, and we shouldn't stand by and let them happen. But creating change isn't nearly as glamorous as the video makes it out to be, and context (and the nuances, complexities, and frustrations that come with it) matters. If something seems too black-and-white, it probably is. It pays to do your research and come up with your own conclusions, and this is no exception.

*********************************************************************************************

Onto other things:

2. This is the best modern-day retelling of a fairy tale you'll see this week, hands down:



3. I don't post fic recs that often on here, but I found a great LoGH fic worth checking out: Inheritance. Cross-dressing!young!Reuenthal fic that's not crack and is actually pretty well-written? YESPLZ. :D

4. A continuation of the seven-questions meme from the last post, this time from [livejournal.com profile] iron_valkyrie :

Read more... )


quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
So a few weeks ago, I met a lot of people through various friending memes....and then I just disappear off the face of the Internet, without even so much as leaving comments on the journals of the new friends I've made.

Oops.  Sorry about that.

Anyway, I figure this time's as good as any to write a new intro post, since I haven't done that in a while:

I'm James ([personal profile] quadruplify), I'm 22 and I live in Connecticut.  I graduated from Middlebury College in Vermont this past May with a bachelor's in environmental studies, and unfortunately I haven't found any stable employment since then.  Because of that, I'm currently living at home with my parents, 14-year-old sister, and grandmother.  Right now I'm in a rather annoying rut, and because of that not much is really going on in my life, so I won't be posting very often around here in the near future.  I was diagnosed with depression last year, and I'm in therapy for it right now; please be aware that I will be writing about mental health issues on occasion, as it's a big part of my life right now.

I tend to be on the shy and introverted side, and I don't always like being the one initiating a conversation, so yeah, there's that.  ^_^;  I don't always comment on people's entries (sometimes because I don't have anything to say or don't know what to say), but I do take the time to read all of them, and just because I don't talk to you that often doesn't mean I won't feel some concern for you if you're going through a hard time.

Politics are very important to me, and I'm interested in keeping up with current events.  My politics can be best described as being leftist/left-of-center; much of the Democratic Party and mainstream "progressives" tend to be too conservative/right-wing for my tastes, but I don't see myself as a radical/communist/anarchist either.  I'm sympathetic with so-called "social justice" movements (feminism, anti-racism, LGBTQ rights, indigenous rights, disability activism, etc.) and their basic tenets, so you'll occasionally see me talk about those kinds of things here.  I enjoy thoughtful, nuanced discussion of social and political issues (especially when they relate to people's personal lives) and wanting to get to the bottom of why things are the way they are, and hopefully I'll start doing some activism and volunteer work in the near future.

I'm also gay (though I'm not really out to anyone IRL except for a select few) and an atheist (but not one of those douchey Richard Dawkins/Christopher Hitchens-type atheists; I find them to be really annoying and intolerant), which also influences my views, I guess.  :3

Music also plays a pretty big role in my life; I tend to gravitate toward "indie," post-rock, electronica, shoegaze, post-punk, and anything that leans toward the experimental side.  My current favorite band is The National, and if you browse my Last.FM page or my music tag, you can get a better glimpse of the stuff I like more than I could explain on my own.  XD

And yes, I'm a fandom person as well!  I'm a big anime fan, and my favorites right now include Durarara!! (I help mod [livejournal.com profile] durarara, actually), Neon Genesis Evangelion, and Legend of the Galactic Heroes; other fandoms I'm into include Avatar: the Last Airbender, Community, and BBC's Sherlock.  And I'm very much a fan of slash as well -- all kinds of slash!  :D  That said, I tend to be more of a dabbler/lurker in fandoms than an active participant; I prefer geeking out with a few people I know well over putting myself out there.  Don't expect me to talk too much about them, but I do like discussing my favorite shows/movies/fandoms when I feel like it.  ;-)  (I also don't have any real celebrity crushes, although Tom Hardy certainly comes close.  8D)

I enjoy reading, writing, learning languages (especially Italian and Japanese), travel, and tai chi -- all of which I don't do nearly enough of, of course.  ^_^;  And some cool things that have happened in my life thus far include being in Italy when the Italian national team won the World Cup in 2006, being interviewed by Radio Taiwan International, and taking classes with professors who have made appearances on The Daily Show, The Colbert Report, and the New York Times bestseller list.  :D

And this is what I look like.  Obviously I'm not the best at taking pictures of myself, but there you go.  :P

Here are some other places you can find me:

Dreamwidth: [personal profile] quadruplify -- I'm trying to start using this more often as opposed to LJ, though I crosspost everything to both places so you won't be missing much.  I have three invites, in case anyone wants one.

Tumblr: [tumblr.com profile] sarcasmisdead -- This is actually where I am most of the time, mostly because IT'S JUST THAT ADDICTIVE.  :PPP  My Tumblr is mostly a collection of what's going on in my headspace at any given time: things I like, things I find interesting or thought-provoking or hot or beautiful, things that are important, and things I find just plain cool.  I tend to use my Tumblr more for link-dumps, music sharing, and fandom, while my LJ/DW is more for IRL goings-on.

Plurk: [plurk.com profile] democracies -- For anything that's too short to be put onto my LJ/DW.  ^_^;

Twitter: [twitter.com profile] quadruplify -- I use this mostly for following interesting accounts and talking to friends.  I do post on here occasionally, though mostly I just crosspost from Plurk.

Last.FM: [last.fm profile] naok31 -- To keep track of the music I listen to

Goodreads: HERE -- To keep track of the books I read

Also, my AIM screenname is mecteol, my username on Skype is subterraneanhomesick, and if you search for mecteol@gmail.com on MSN I'm available there too.  Mostly, though, I'm most active on Tumblr, Plurk, and Twitter these days, so if you contact me through those you'll get the fastest response.

So that's pretty much it -- sorry if this is tl;dr, but I tried my best, right?  XD  Anyway, if you have any questions, feel free to ask them.  Nice to meet you all!  *waves*

quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
Because I'm too lazy to do any sort of end-of-year/New Year's Resolutions post right now, so y'all get this. Happy New Year's everyone! Hope it's a good one. :D


quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
I got a Christmas card from [livejournal.com profile] misskalloway the other day, so thank you very much for that! :D

Speaking of Christmas cards, I plan on sending them out on Monday, or Tuesday at the very latest. It's definitely cutting it close, and for those who asked for one, you'll most likely receive them late (especially if you live outside the U.S.), but they will be coming soon, I promise. ;-)

Also, since the first holiday love meme I linked to in my last post filled up, here's part 2, if you haven't gotten a chance to comment on it and want to. Thanks for those of you who have already!

The past couple of weeks I've been working at my mom's workplace as a paper-pusher again; it's as extremely boring as it usually is, but I've been making a decent amount of money that should keep me going for a little bit. Hopefully in 2012 I can get a more stable job, but that'd require me actually making the effort to look. :P Ah well, I think I'll ride out the next couple of weeks and then start putting myself out there after the first of the year. That should work out, no?

Anyway, before I forget I should tell you about this anti-Islamophobia campaign a friend of mine from college has started. It's called "Say Salaam," and it involves people making videos of themselves saying the Arabic greeting "as-salaam alaikum" ("peace be with you") as an expression of solidarity against stereotypes, hate crimes, bullying, and hate against Islam in general. It's a campaign that's very much in the vein of It Gets Better, and while it has its problems much like IGB does, I honestly think it has the potential to become something big (and I'm not just saying this because someone I know is spearheading it XD). Here's the video he posted to kick things off, and you can find more info at [tumblr.com profile] saysalaam. Even if you can't make a video yourself, please spread the word!  I'd love to see this take off.  ^_^;

And after reading it on-and-off for five months, I finally got around to finishing The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle -- it had some really interesting and powerful parts, but all in all it was really, really open-ended, and in a not-all-that-compelling way either.  Good, but not one of Murakami's best.  I've also started on Adam Haslett's Union Atlantic; I've been enjoying it quite a bit, even though it's rather simplistic and maybe a bit clichéd, especially compared to something like Wind-Up.  I'm going to reserve judgment until I finish it, though.

I've also taken a break from reading Homestuck -- probably permanently, from the way things look.  :(  Maybe because I was reading it on-and-off too, but by the time I hit the beginning of Act 5 I pretty much lost my ability to care about what was going on. I mean, I get why it's so popular, it just doesn't seem to be doing anything to me, y'know?  Unless I still haven't gotten to the "good part" yet or whatever.  :/

And then there was all those Legend of Korra leaks a couple of weekends ago.  Yeah, old news is old at this point, but whatever, I'm still excited.  8D

Other than the fact that I've been trying to be more active on Plurk recently ([plurk.com profile] democracies , for those who are interested), that's really about all the notable stuff that's happened with me recently.  Which still isn't much, sadly, but hopefully that'll change with the new year.  I'll leave y'all with some songs I've been obsessed with lately, since I haven't done that in a while:

Gotye, "Somebody That I Used to Know"
The National, "I Need My Girl"  (new songs from The National?  YESPLZ :DDDDDDDDDDDD)
The National, "Rylan"
Sleigh Bells, "Rill Rill"
Tindersticks, "Medicine"
Lana Del Rey, "Born to Die"
Moby, "Extreme Ways"
Friends, "I'm His Girl"  (a.k.a. the current guilty pleasure)

quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons (Default)

If you're also on here, I'll try to get to you relatively soon, JSYK.  ;-)

quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
First of all, a quick reminder for those of you who didn't catch it the first time: If you'd like a Christmas/holiday card from me, go here. Feel free to ask for one even if we haven't talked a lot. ;-)

Anyway, I figure I might as well finally get around to answering these questions:

- Comment with "Hit me!" or whatever else you want to comment with.
- I'll respond by asking you five questions.
- Update your journal with the answers to the questions.
- Include this explanation in the post and offer to ask other people (if you want).


Responses to questions from hairspray, kalaryx, and neonstilettos under the cut... )

And here's another meme from [livejournal.com profile] hairspray, because I can't resist:



Plurk

Dec. 3rd, 2011 01:09 am
quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons (Default)
I just got a Plurk account today:


The only reason I got one is because some people on my f-list are starting to use it more often, and it'd be the only way I can keep in touch with them.  Anyone else over there?  If you are, please add me!  :D

quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
Of all the nights I really want to stay up really late, tonight's the night I can't. Fuck. =_=

Anyway, I have some good news to share:

You have to click the cut to find out... )

* I'm thinking about doing NaNoWriMo this year. I do need a kick in the butt to get myself writing again, and since I still don't have a job and I have plenty of free time, why not? Good idea y/n?

* The reason why I have to go to bed early is because I'll be spending the weekend in Boston with my mom and sister, and we're leaving early in the morning. :P We're going to see my cousin at college because this weekend is their "Fall Family Weekend"/"open house," so we should definitely have a good time. The only thing that's gonna really suck about it is that Ex-Uncle and his ugly-on-the-inside wife will be meeting us at points, which is a huge DNW. But it'll be great to get to travel and see my aunt and cousin again! I'll be gone until Sunday night EDT; I'll still check LJ and (as much as possible) Tumblr on my phone, and if you want to get in touch with me I can PM you my contact info, but FYI I'm going to be a little bit more sparse this weekend than usual. (I also have AIM and Skype on my phone, but I'm not sure if I'll try that just yet.) Expect an awesome summary of everything when I get back, though. ;-)

quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
It's been over a month since my last real post, which is the longest I've gone for some time now. And that's because, well........I haven't had much to really talk about. Lately I've been feeling less willing to write long entries in LJ/DW and more willing to just reblog stuff over at Tumblr ([tumblr.com profile] sarcasmisdead, for those of you who have a Tumblr who haven't added me yet and want to), which is far less taxing on my time and energy. (And LJ getting yet another bad DDoS attack isn't helping matters much. I know it's not at all LJ's fault, and I'm all for protecting free speech and political dissent, but as an LJ friend of mine put it, "LiveJournal is so last decade." And quite frankly, I'm starting to feel the same way.)

Other than Tumblr, though, very little has been going on that's been worth writing about. No trips, no interesting events, no cool movies/TV shows watched or books read, no new big musical obsessions or writing projects, no goals fulfilled. (Well, my mom did get a huge promotion at work. Even if the Rat Race™ is not your thing at all, that's gotta count for something, right?) Frankly, I'm a mess right now. I'm trying to take it easy, but I've been feeling even more empty and numb since I came back home from California. Not worthless, thank goodness no, just........not feeling all that alive (and to a certain extent, not really wanting to.)

But! Things will definitely be picking up over the next few weeks. I had my first appointment with my new psychiatrist on Thursday, and I'm starting treatment next week. I'm weaning myself off the sertraline (because it's clearly not working now), and I'll be starting talk therapy soon, which I'm hoping will be a big help. We'll see how this goes -- if this doesn't work out, then we're going to have to go elsewhere (which is going to be stressful, since it takes a while to actually schedule an appointment with a mental health professional, and then I'd have to go through the process over again), but we have to give it a shot first before we know for certain. (Then again, my new psychiatrist called me Batman. Maybe it won't be that bad after all? :3) I'm also going to start practicing driving again (I'm definitely getting my license by the end of this year), and I'm going to go for regular UV light treatments for my psoriasis because it's gotten out of control.

And most importantly, meeting [livejournal.com profile] two_grey_rooms in New Haven tomorrow! (Well, technically today, but still.) It's the first time I'm meeting someone I first met on LJ in RL, so I'm a little nervous about it, but I think smashing times will be had. :DDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD

So yeah, I'll be a little bit more busy pretty soon, and even though change is always going to be at least somewhat painful (LESS TIME ON THE GLORIOUS INTERNET? NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!! D:), it's all going to be for the best.

Sorry I've been such a shitty online friend lately, so let's try and catch up! How are you all doing? Is there anything you need to let me know about? Anything I missed? Anything else you want to say? Anything at all? ^_^;

*******************************************************************************

And we'll end this with a couple of memes I've been meaning to do for a while now. ([livejournal.com profile] hairspray, [profile] kalaryx, and [livejournal.com profile] meaisin_caoin, I know you asked me questions for that 5-question meme that was going around forever ago. I won't answer them just yet, but I promise I will get around to it very soon. Trust me! XD)

What Transformer are you? )

What color are you? )

The Sorting Hat Test....? )
quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons (Default)
I CAN'T EXPRESS IN WORDS HOW EXCITED I AM ABOUT THE NEW SERIES RIGHT NOW

EVERYTHING THAT CAME OUT OF THE PANEL WAS ABSOLUTELY AMAZING AND FIERCE AND AWESOME AND ALL THAT

IT'S BEEN A COUPLE OF HOURS AND I'M STILL COMPLETELY PUMPED TBH

(AS YOU CAN TELL BY THE CAPSLOCK I'M SURE)

I DON'T EVEN KNOW WHERE TO BEGIN

KORRA'S BADASSNESS AND THE AANG STATUE AND THE RETURN OF APPA AND THE POLAR BEAR-DOG AND MAKO AND BOLIN AND THE STEAMPUNK SETTING AND TENZIN'S FAMILY AND AND AND

WHY DO WE HAVE TO WAIT ANOTHER YEAR THIS IS GONNA BE SO AWESOME

SO I'VE CREATED A STORIFY WITH ALL THE NEW INFO AND I'VE PUT THE LINK TO IT BELOW, IF YOU WANT TO CHECK IT OUT

(AND PLEASE SPREAD IT AROUND!)

AND IF YOU DON'T CARE ABOUT THIS FANDOM, THAT'S FINE -- YOU JUST SUCK

View ""LEGEND OF KORRA" PANEL @ SDCC 2011" on Storify



ANYWAY, RL UPDATE COMING IN THE NEXT FEW DAYS FYI

quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
I have to go to bed REALLY SOON so that I can get up early enough for the flight to California (which I'll go into below), and I have a bit of a headache right now, so I need to keep this short:

--Saturday night was the Okkervil River concert, and it was awesome. It was my first time at Toad's Place, and I certainly didn't mind it there; I haven't been to too many venues like that, but I did find it to be a little bit on the seedy side, given that they've been around for a long time and they're coasting on their reputation at this point. The acoustics weren't exactly the greatest either, and because I went alone and didn't know anyone else there, my social anxiety kicked in big time and I wasn't able to enjoy it as much as I'd hoped. :/ That being said, though, the music was nothing short of excellent, and I had a great time.

Details under the cut... )

--We went to my dad's mom's house on Sunday to celebrate her birthday, which is next Saturday the 11th. We celebrated with great take-out pizza and some pretty awesome cupcakes my parents bought in a pastry shop in Wallingford which they want to take me and my sister to because it's apparently really good. XD For my birthday, she gave me shortbread cookies as a gift -- she knows what I like, LOL :B And apparently some woodpeckers built a nest in the apple tree in her backyard, so I managed to get a glimpse of some baby woodpeckers in their nest. Pretty cool, no? ~_^

--And today I got my birthday present from my parents -- a Teavana tea set. I for one am not complaining. \o/

--So as I mentioned before, I'm going to California (San Jose, to be exact) tomorrow/today with my mom and sister to visit my aunt and cousin for the weekend. My cousin is graduating high school on Thursday and will be going to college in Boston in the fall, and I'm really proud of her! I'm not that enthused about the airplane rides (6 hours from DC to San Francisco --> YUCK DNW D:), and family sometimes irritates me, but it'll be a nice change of pace and I'll try to make the most of it. Here's the itinerary as I know it right now:

Wednesday: Flight, get settled at aunt's house
Thursday: Cousin's graduation
Friday: San Francisco!
Saturday: ??????? (probably hanging out in San Jose)
Sunday: Flight back home

Unfortunately, I'm going to have limited Internet access while I'm there. I'll still try to keep up on everything as much as I can, but it won't be easy. In the meantime, if you want to get in touch with me for any reason, e-mail me (mecteol -AT- gmail -DOT- com) or contact me through Twitter or Facebook. (And if you want my cell phone number, let me know and I'll PM it to you.) So consider this a mini-pseudo-hiatus until I get back Sunday evening EDT. I hope to have some good stories when I get back. 8D

Hope everyone else is feeling well!
quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
Uh.......hi. Been a while since my last (real) post. Sorry about that. ^_^;

So, I've graduated from college. I'd write more about it -- about all the things I'm going to miss about Middlebury and Vermont (and everything I won't miss, because there's plenty of that too), about all the awesome things that happened to me over the past four years, about how much Middlebury became a second home for me whether I liked it or not, about how I changed and how beautiful things were there, etc. But this past week, I've had zero energy to do anything more taxing on my brain than doing some unpacking and spending all day on Tumblr. (Seriously, it's gotten to be a near-addiction at this point. I should probably ease off on it sometime soon. :PPP) I might still write about it eventually, but I have a track record of saying I'll make an entry about something and not actually doing it, and besides, if you've known me long enough I'm sure you could guess what I'd write about anyway. :B

Anyway, not much happened the day before graduation -- just eating at restaurants with my mom and sister (including dinner at American Flatbread), buying some more books for myself, and spending the rest of my time trying to relax alone. I was feeling rather disconnected from everyone else there the last few weeks of the semester, which sucked because I had grown close to lots of different people over the past year and I wanted to see them again and celebrate graduation with them, but at the same time I was extremely tired and wanted nothing more than to go home.

Graduation itself was fine -- not much to write home about, really, except that even though at least have the class was hungover, no serious shenanigans happened. Oh, and as per Middlebury tradition, we all got canes in addition to our diplomas, as a rather symbolic "souvenir," for lack of a better term. (It's a pretty badass cane, if I do say so myself. 8D) This page has some pictures and video of commencement, in case you're curious. And this page has some more information, and is totally worth looking at because of a comment left by "Pissed Off Crip" about some of the transphobic and ableist BS that went down during the ceremony.

And I got a new digital camera as a graduation present! :DDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD In addition to money and some new clothes, of course. And my parents decided to decorate my bedroom as a surprise when I got home -- complete with balloons and banners and a fake tree. And some of the bunny statuettes around the house were wearing mortarboards too. SERIOUSLY U GUYZ *embarrased.gif* XD

So yeah, that's about all the interesting stuff that's happened lately. I need at least another week to rest and recuperate from everything and just........deal with the fact that I've graduated from college, holy fuck holy shit how did this happen seriously. ._., And the trip to California in mid-June will certainly help. I am going to have to look for a job pretty soon, though, considering I have student loans to pay off (even though the first bill won't come until next March), but the good news is I do have some long-term goals I want to start working toward. I'll write about said goals eventually (and I will get around to it, scout's honor!), but for now, all I'll say is that it's great to finally have some direction in my life right now.

And I'll end this rambling here. Thank you very much for all the well-wishes! And feel free to make this into a party post or whatever, since this journal certainly needs one. ;-)



quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
First off, a warm welcome to [livejournal.com profile] archy_the_roach!  Glad to meet you, and if you have any questions about me don't be afraid to ask!  ;-)

Second, thank you so, so much for all the comments you left on the "You Are Beautiful" meme a few days ago.  You guys are absolutely wonderful, and I can't thank you enough for being so awesome.  ^_^;

Third, I've started using Tumblr again recently, and it's been a major time suck, as usual.  XDDDDDDDDDDDDDD  I'm sarcasmisdead over there, so please feel free to add me if you haven't already!

And fourth -- I'M DONE WITH COLLEGE!!!!!!!!!!

I wish I could be more excited, but I'm too tired to feel much excitement right now, mostly because my sleep schedule is once again out of whack -- I had been going to bed at 5 AM some nights, and last night I didn't get any sleep at all.  :PPP  The big reason was that I was working on my Japanese lit final paper all last week.  As in, the one that was due last Monday but I handed in on Saturday, almost a week late.  -_-;  After finishing my take-home exam for Politics of Virtual Realities (which I did hand in on time), I was so utterly burned out, and I so didn't want to do the other paper, that I just......lost all motivation to do it.  And the allergies and general low mood didn't help matters either.

But......it's done.  I put a lot of work into both papers, so I think they came out well regardless.  And considering I didn't study all that much for my African Politics exam on Friday, I think I did pretty well on that too.  :D

It feels weird that it's actually over, that I actually don't have any more schoolwork left to do and I'm going to be graduating on Sunday -- it feels utterly surreal, after college has been a big part of my life for the past four years.  Well, I do have a lot of ~feelings~ about the whole thing, but I think I'll write about that in separate entries later this week.

Anyway, this week is Senior Week, which means a lot of events are going on.  But unless I absolutely have to be there (like the ES department reception, the senior class photo, and of course, commencement), I don't really plan on going to most of these events; not a lot of them look all that interesting, and I don't have the energy to be all that social anyway.

Besides, I've been doing a lot of stuff over the past week or so anyway.  I've been kinda splurging in town lately; I've been going out for tea and eating out quite a bit lately, especially having dinner at American Flatbread on Saturday night (which was seriously one of the best meals I've ever had IN MY LIFE.  *_____*  Seriously, if there's an AF near you, GO THERE -- you won't be disappointed!), and buying yet more books (Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell and The History of White People by Nell Irvin Painter, if you're curious).  I've also been running around doing all the errands I need to do before leaving town, like getting a haircut, closing my checking account, and picking up my sertraline prescription (I'm back up at 150mg now).  So as you could probably guess, I'm near flat broke right now.  :P  That's all right, though, I can survive a few more days.  ~_^

Other than meeting with my first-year seminar professor for the last time this afternoon, that's about it as far as things going on in my life are concerned.  This is really just a post to let everyone know that no, I'm not dead, just busy and worn out.  ^_^;  How is everyone else doing?

quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
So here's my schedule for the next eek:

SAUTRDAY
--bang out my take-home exam (8-12 pp.) for Politics of Virtual Realities, considering I already have it outlined
--start prep work for my Japanese lit paper (12 pp.)

SUNDAY
--finish Japanese lit paper prep work
--write first 6-7 pp. of Japanese lit paper

MONDAY
--finish Japanese lit paper
--hand both papers in (since they're due in the afternoon)

TUESDAY - WEDNESDAY - THURSDAY
--cram for my African Politics exam (and maybe go to office hours?)

FRIDAY 5/13
--African Politics exam (9 AM-noon)
--rejoice in being DONE WITH COLLEGE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So yeah, this is going to be a hellish weekend, but I've been through worse.  It doesn't help that I have zero motivation to do any of this, and my allergies are really acting up on me (my eyes are itchy like hell, and Zyrtec is only helping a little bit), but I'm going to try to stick to this plan for once.  We'll see how it goes.  :P

In any case, other than procrastinating on Tumblr, I'll probably be scarce around these parts for a couple of days, at least until Monday.  And not much happened this week, except:

a.) Verbal Onslaught on Thursday (which I didn't perform in, alas, mostly because I hadn't been feeling good recently, though I'm slowly starting to get better)
b.) going to the bar with some people from my Social Movements class Wednesday night (I didn't have anything, mostly because the meds would screw with me if I did), where I listened to stories of some of the stupid irresponsible things they did while being all-out drunk (which annoys the hell out of me, in case you haven't guessed already), though this was improved somewhat by one young woman who told stories about, among other things, the time she was doing an environmental journalism project in Kansas and met a man who helped her a lot, even though he was also a registered sex offender who ran an illegal back-room sex shop called Hillbilly's and pressured her into buying an $80 extra-large dildo nicknamed "the Great American Challenge"
c.) a lecture on sexual identity and mental health on Tuesday
d.) this week's episode of Community (OMG SO AWESOME :DDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD)

And that's about it, I guess.  I really need to go to bed soon, so I can get a good night's sleep (since I won't be getting one for quite a while) and just get everything out of the way as quickly as possible.  Hope everyone else out there is doing all right.  ;-)

quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
Let's finish this up, shall we?

Previous days under the cut... )

DAY 23: A song that you cannot stand to listen to.



Ugh, bro rock. Need I say more? :PPP

DAY 24: A song that you have danced to with your best friend.



Well, not my best friend, but a friend, at the Yeasayer concert back in November.

DAY 25: A song you could listen to all day without getting tired.

As much as I love music, no song really fits this category for me, because even when I get obsessed with a song I will eventually get tired with/burned out on it. This song is one I've been rather obsessed with recently, though:



quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
So I have 22 days, 8 classes, 2 response papers, 1 presentation, 2 12-page papers, and 1 3-hour exam before I graduate from college. I should feel like this is starting to put things in perspective, but it hasn't just yet. :P

Problem is, I've done practically nothing the past few days. No work, no socializing, nothing -- just bumming around being antisocial and wanting nothing more than to sleep for five years straight. Oh yeah, and I'm all caught up with Community, so I have no excuse but to start working on the stuff that's urgent: the two response papers (which involves a movie and lots of reading) and starting my research for the Japanese lit paper that I have to do a presentation on on Thursday. And writing something to perform at Verbal Onslaught on Thursday night, because that's the last one of the year and I've been needing to perform there at least once before I graduate.

So yeah........that's that. Gotta pull myself together for one last week-long push. Ergh. :/

The only vaguely interesting things I did recently was: a.) going to a poetry reading of an acquaintance of mine (who's graduating with me) on Thursday night; b.) being part of a meeting with some other students and next year's head of the environmental studies program on how to incorporate social and environmental justice (e.g. racism, classism, sexism, etc.) into the ES curriculum on Friday, and c.) finally getting around to seeing Marwencol, which I briefly mentioned last November and aired on PBS this week. I want to write about it more in-depth when I have the energy, because it really moved and affected me in a lot of ways, but for now I'll say that it was an amazing and brilliant movie y'all should see. ;-)

And now for the meme:

Previous days under the cut... )

DAY 20: The last song alphabetically in your iPod/iTunes.

65daysofstatic, "Goodbye, 2007"

DAY 21: Your favorite song.



DAY 22: A song that someone has sung to you.



Well, I admit, it wasn't sung to me, per se, but not too long ago I was hanging out somewhere and a young woman standing next to me was singing this song using ASL. That's gotta count for something, right? XD

DAY 23: A song that you cannot stand to listen to.
DAY 24: A song that you have danced to with your best friend.
DAY 25: A song you could listen to all day without getting tired.

quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
The Bad:
1.


2. Ever since I went back down to 100mg of sertraline, my mood has started to destabilize big time; it's been tougher to work up the motivation to do anything lately, even getting out of bed in the morning. Right now I'm OK, though, and I'm sure things will get better in due time. I finally got around to calling the psychiatrist's office today, and he should get back to me tomorrow morning to see what to do next.

3. Missed my radio show again this week. :PPP

4. Students in my Politics of Virtual Realities class have pissed me off yet again. This time, we saw Avatar this week (the James Cameron blue aliens one), and the class discussion about it was absolutely dismissive of its racism and other problematic aspects. And when I tried to bring it up, the professor ended up telling me, "You get a gold star for working up the nerve to disagree with everyone else, but you're still wrong." She said it was a joke. Mmhmm. :/

(For the record, Avatar was mediocre to average at best. Stunning visuals, and Sigourney Weaver was actually pretty awesome, but everything else was hackneyed and predictable and cheesy. I know I'm supposed to ~~~suspend my disbelief~~~ when watching movies like this, but this was ridiculous. It was bearable, though, I'll give it that. Would've been better if Col. Quaritch had a shirtless scene, though. /shameless XD)

5. We've been getting warmer weather around here lately -- temps finally hit 80°F/27°C today. This is not a bad thing, in and of itself, but it's happened really suddenly, the humidity has been a huge shock, and I'm slowly starting to get my seasonal allergies again. Wonderful.

The Good:

1. Some of my African Politics classes were canceled this week because the professor is in Cameroon right now. So there's that, at least.

2. I'm officially done with my Social Movements class! Today I did my final project, which was a group project where we had to come up with talking points, an action plan, and a stump speech for a hypothetical new organization devoted to abolishing the death penalty. And I think we did pretty fucking well, if I do say so myself. :D We still have class next week (the last class), but I don't need to do anything for it, and we have no exams, so it's one less thing I have to worry about.

3. Speaking of Social Movements: our class recently did a compilation of all the big-ass papers we wrote earlier in the semester. My essay is on pages 54-64.

4. I started watching Community recently, and I really really really REALLY REALLY like it! I don't normally go for these kinds of shows, but god-DAMN I love this one! The jokes are absolutely spot on, and it's so funny the outlandishness of the situations don't really matter. Now I'm going to be on the lookout for fic and icons and fandom and all that good stuff. [personal profile] radiovolume and [personal profile] ninasafiri, YOU ARE TOTALLY AT FAULT FOR THIS. 8DDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD

5. The new episode of Pioneer One is coming out tomorrow/today! Can't wait! ^_^;

*****************************************************************************

And now for the meme:

Previous songs under the cut... )

Today's songs under the cut because there's quite a bit under here. ^_^; )

DAY 20: The last song alphabetically in your iPod/iTunes.
DAY 21: Your favorite song.
DAY 22: A song that someone has sung to you.
DAY 23: A song that you cannot stand to listen to.
DAY 24: A song that you have danced to with your best friend.
DAY 25: A song you could listen to all day without getting tired.

quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
So I managed to finish the entirety of Ender's Game in about eight hours. It was for my Politics of Virtual Realities class; I didn't have to have the whole thing read until Wednesday, but apparently I got so caught up in it that I just had to finish it as soon as I could. At least some of my work is getting finished ahead of time. XD Anyway, it was certainly a compelling read, and it's going to stick with me for a while, but I wouldn't say it was a great book, per se. I think there are a couple of things about it that bother me, but I can't quite put my finger on them just yet. In any case, it's made me curious about the whole Enderverse (even though the author is a homophobic bigot, UGH :PPP) -- does anyone know if the other books and stories are any good?

I also finished Yoko Ogawa's The Diving Pool recently for another class, and I enjoyed that as well! If you enjoy (or think you'd enjoy) subtly twisted psychological horror, I highly recommend it. ;-) And speaking of horror, today I managed to watch Nosferatu, the 1922 silent German Expressionist film that's essentially a retelling of the Dracula story. It was certainly a good movie, especially for what it managed to do for its time and what it influenced in later decades.

Anyway, I'm beginning to suspect the insomnia I've been experiencing the past few days has to do with the sertraline. I went up to a 150mg dose a little over a week ago, and the sleeping problems started a few days after that. Today I went back down to 100mg to see if that helps, though I think it's going to take a little bit for my body to adjust before I notice anything. Right now I feel restless, overtired, a little dizzy, and very slightly nauseous all at the same time (though thankfully, not to the point where I'm all "OMG I'm going to throw up!").

Not much else has been going on IRL -- aside from a few things I'll mention later, it was a rather boring week. And yet, many things happened at the same time. If that makes any sense. ^_^; For obvious reasons, I can't explain it any further right now, but I will soon.

So before I go to bed tonight, here's the meme. Hope everyone out there is feeling better than I am right now. :/

Previous days behind the cut... )

DAY 13: A song that reminds you of a former friend.



This reminds me of an Internet fandom friend I knew about 3-4 years ago, since I'm pretty sure she introduced me to this song. The friendship ended rather messily, but I've made my peace with it, especially since I realized it was with very good reason. Sometimes I still feel the urge to get back in touch with her, though, just to see how she's doing.

DAY 14: A song that reminds you of your boyfriend/girlfriend.

Again, since I've never had a Significant Other (at least not just yet), this one must be skipped as well. (This is getting to be a bit sad, isn't it? 8D)

DAY 15: A song you love singing along to.
DAY 16: A song that has made you cry.
DAY 17: A song that makes you want to dance.
DAY 18: A song you love but rarely listen to.
DAY 19: The first song alphabetically in your iPod/iTunes.
DAY 20: The last song alphabetically in your iPod/iTunes.
DAY 21: Your favorite song.
DAY 22: A song that someone has sung to you.
DAY 23: A song that you cannot stand to listen to.
DAY 24: A song that you have danced to with your best friend.
DAY 25: A song you could listen to all day without getting tired.

quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
I really feel like crap right now; I haven't been sleeping well the past few nights, and I've been waking up much earlier than I normally do, which is just extremely frustrating.  So in the meantime, have another meme, stolen from [livejournal.com profile] gingeynary :

Name a character from one of my fandoms, and I will reply saying:
* How I FEEEEEL about this character
* All the people I ship romantically with this character
* My non-romantic OTP for this character
* My unpopular opinion about this character
* One thing I wish would happen / had happened with this character in canon.

I'm not interested in answering questions about Transformers right now, but characters from any other fandom you know I'm familiar with are fair game.  ^_^;

quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
DAY 01: A song from your childhood.
DAY 02: A song that reminds you of your most recent ex-boyfriend/girlfriend.
DAY 03: A song that reminds you of one/both of your parents.
DAY 04: A song that calms you down.

DAY 05: A song that is often stuck in your head.
DAY 06: A song that reminds you of a best friend.

DAY 07: A song that reminds you of the past summer.
DAY 08: A song that reminds you of your "first love."

DAY 09: A song that makes you hopeful.
DAY 10: A song by your favorite band.
DAY 11: A song on the soundtrack of your favorite movie.


DAY 12: The last song you heard.



This is The National's contribution to the soundtrack for the video game Portal 2. I really like it, as you'd expect, but it doesn't grab me as much as some of the other songs they released recently.

Anyway, this single-handedly makes me want to play the Portal games, even though I don't have the money for it. (I can't fucking believe I missed out on when they were giving away Portal for free. >B[ )

Upcoming days under the cut... )
quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
DAY 01: A song from your childhood.
DAY 02: A song that reminds you of your most recent ex-boyfriend/girlfriend.
DAY 03: A song that reminds you of one/both of your parents.
DAY 04: A song that calms you down.

DAY 05: A song that is often stuck in your head.
DAY 06: A song that reminds you of a best friend.

DAY 07: A song that reminds you of the past summer.
DAY 08: A song that reminds you of your "first love."


DAY 09: A song that makes you hopeful.



The lyrics aren't exactly all that uplifting, but the song as a whole totally is. ^_^;

DAY 10: A song by your favorite band.



Like you didn't see that one coming. XD

DAY 11: A song on the soundtrack of your favorite movie.

This is from one of my favorite movies, not the favorite movie of mine. But I still really like this song:



Upcoming days under the cut... )
quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
1. So I've just been made one of the new maintainers for [livejournal.com profile] durarara, which is very exciting! Even though I'm a total lurker and not exactly the most active guy in the fandom. (OH GOD WHAT THE HELL DID I GET MYSELF INTO DDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD:) Anyway, if you have any questions, comments, or concerns, or if there are any not-so-funny shenanigans I don't already know about, feel free to PM me, e-mail me (mecteol@gmail.com), or leave a comment in my latest public entry on this journal. I do try to keep tabs on everything as much as possible, so I'll definitely try to respond ASAP. (And while we're at it, here are the rules in case you need a refresher.)

Between that and [livejournal.com profile] drrr_bigbang seriously tempting me, I just might get more involved in the fandom after all. I still haven't finished rewatching the series, and I haven't yet gotten a chance to look at episodes 12.5 and 25 and the light novels, so I should probably get on that when I have the chance.

2. All right, RL update! This past Friday was the Spring Student Symposium, where students talk about the independent work they've done this past year, whether it's thesis work, senior essays, or anything else they've been researching on their own time. It's very cool because you get to talk to your friends about all the interesting stuff they've done, all in a pretty relaxed atmosphere. Some of the presentations I went to included ones on post-apocalyptic fiction, why the Taliban have gotten stronger in Afghanistan over the past few years, factors that affect how long insurgencies last, a sociological analysis of a campus celebrity, Jerry Springer, prospects for Korean reunification, honor killings in Turkey, the English-only movement in the U.S. and why it's completely and utterly stupid, how hard it is to translate fiction, attitudes toward beach littering in Chile, and ecopsychology. If some of them sound boring, trust me, they weren't -- the kinds of larger themes people talked about were fascinating, and I learned a ton. A perfect event for eggheads like me. XDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD

(Oh, and there was an impromptu Improv Everywhere-style dance-off in the main area of the science building during the reception at the end of the day. And it was pretty fucking awesome, if I do say so myself! ^_^;)

3. Before I forget, I'd like to mention HELA, a non-profit organization whose purpose is to help Afghan women, primarily through building schools, developing other education programs for women, and building and maintaining wells, among other things. What's really good about this group is that they work with the Afghan government and existing structures and systems in order to make sure these projects can stick around for the long term (something I know [livejournal.com profile] mcollinknight can appreciate). The president of HELA is a senior at my college originally from Afghanistan, and she's also the executive director of the Afghan Youth Initiative. Here's some more info about her, and here's an interview she did on NBC's Today show back in September. Please spread the word; this is a great cause that more people should know about!

4. Last Friday I also went to Playing at War, a one-man play put on by a senior Theatre/History double-major about British theatre -- especially plays put on by British soldiers -- during the American Revolution. The student played William Dunlap, a playwright who wrote the first history of American theatre in 1832; he was also a British Loyalist who wasn't a big fan of Washington and his ilk, and it showed. (Like how he mentioned how the Sons of Liberty wanted to ban theatre because it was a "foreign influence" and "un-American," even to the point of burning one down in New York City after it was known that the controversial Stamp Act had been repealed. Nevermind that the theatre had an important role to play for the people living in the colonies at the time. Sound familiar?) It was a fascinating alternate look at history, especially something that's often ignored, and it was interesting to hear about the British military's appreciation of theatre, which is something you wouldn't expect. I definitely don't regret going. (Especially since I got in for free! :B)

5. I finally got around to finishing Kafka on the Shore, and it was EXCELLENT. I had been meaning to read that one for a while now, and I'm glad I did! Highly recommended. ;-)

6. Has anyone seen the first episode of A Game of Thrones yet? It's gotten a lot of hype lately, but I'm wondering what people thought of it if they saw it, or if they've read the books. I won't have a lot of time in the next few days, so I'm wondering if it's worth it.

Well, that's about it for me right now. How is everyone else doing?
quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
I was going to post an RL update today, but that........didn't happen. :PPP So I'll just continue the music meme for right now.

DAY 01: A song from your childhood.
DAY 02: A song that reminds you of your most recent ex-boyfriend/girlfriend.
DAY 03: A song that reminds you of one/both of your parents.
DAY 04: A song that calms you down.

DAY 05: A song that is often stuck in your head.
DAY 06: A song that reminds you of a best friend.


DAY 07: A song that reminds you of the past summer.



Already posted before, but I think it kinda speaks for itself. ;-)

DAY 08: A song that reminds you of your "first love."

..........Nope, still haven't been in a romantic relationship (and will probably never happen, given my personal definition and opinions on "romance"), so I'm skipping this one as well. ^_^;

Upcoming days under the cut... )

OK, I really need to get to bed now; I've been up way too late. >_>

quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
DAY 01: A song from your childhood.
DAY 02: A song that reminds you of your most recent ex-boyfriend/girlfriend.
DAY 03: A song that reminds you of one/both of your parents.
DAY 04: A song that calms you down.


DAY 05: A song that is often stuck in your head.



The songs that are stuck in my head change depending on the day and what I'm obsessed with; this particular one has been in my head for a while now.

DAY 06: A song that reminds you of a best friend.



I've featured this one a while back. I don't feel like going into the backstory with this one.

Upcoming days under the cut... )

quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
Life has been going relatively well these past few days; nothing too exciting has been going on lately, but I did get a 99 on my Japanese lit exam and an A- on my latest African Politics paper, the weather's been getting better, and I finally got to check out the new student-run cafe on campus. Belgian waffle with maple syrup, bananas, and dark chocolate = DELICIOUS. XD

Also, this meme is still going if you're interested. ;-)

Anyway, I've fallen behind on the music meme, so here goes nothing:

DAY 01: A song from your childhood.

DAY 02: A song that reminds you of your most recent ex-boyfriend/girlfriend.

Since I've never had an ex, this question doesn't exactly apply. (I know, I suck, but that's life I suppose. :PPP) Next!

DAY 03: A song that reminds you of one/both of your parents.



Yeah, this is a Beatles song, but I'm putting up Low's cover version just because I absolutely adore Mimi Parker's voice. ^_^; And yeah, as much as I love my parents, this just about sums them up. >_>

DAY 04: A song that calms you down.



This song is actually split into two videos, just because it's 17 minutes long and YouTube has a 15-minute limit on uploads from normal users -- fortunately, I've set it up so the second video should play after the first is done without you having to do anything.

Anyway, it's worth listening to the whole thing, because then you can see just how good this song is at calming anyone down, not just me. 8DDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD

Upcoming days under the cut... )

quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
Because everyone's doing it, and I need to distract myself from this response paper I need to write.  :P

Give me a character and I will give you my:

• OTP for them.
• Runner-up pairing.
• Honorable mention(s).
• Crack pairing(s).
• Ship everyone else seems to like, but I don't. (alternatively: ship I like that everyone else seems to hate)


Characters from any fandom I've been known to fanboy/participate in in some way are fair game, and you're more than welcome to ask for more than one.  (If you're going to ask Transformers characters, though, I'd prefer you stick to G1.)  ;-)

quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
I just finished reading Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World, and I really enjoyed it! So while I'm letting it sink in, here's a multi-day music meme I got from [livejournal.com profile] hairspray -- hope you enjoy it!

DAY 01: A song from your childhood.



There's not much I can really say about this song, just that I remember loving it when I was really young and it was playing on VH1 a lot (I used to watch a lot of VH1 when I was little, back when it still played music videos). My 5-year-old self really liked the lead singer in the video with his whole don't-give-a-fuck aura, so I always danced with him whenever it came on. XD

Upcoming days under the cut... )

**************************************************

So because this month is National Poetry Month, some people on my f-list (like [livejournal.com profile] dreams_of_all and [livejournal.com profile] eska_rina) have been posting one poem a day for the month. While I don't plan on doing that, I'll try to post some poems I like and have enjoyed every so often, when I remember. For now, here's some Pablo Neruda and Khalil Gibran:

Pablo Neruda -- A Dog Has Died )


Pablo Neruda -- Un perro ha muerto (original Spanish version of A Dog Has Died) )


Khalil Gibran -- On Children )


Khalil Gibran -- Tears and Laughter )

**************************************************

I have a lot of other things I'd like to post, but for now I'll leave you with this: oneword.com. I was recently reminded of the existence of this site recently, since I used to use it a lot back in high school; basically you're given a one-word prompt, and you have 60 seconds to write about it (though I'm sure you could get away with writing for longer than a minute if you got really into it). It might be a good way to get you writers out there out of a writing slump, so feel free to try it out! Hope you like it. ;-)

quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
Ugh, this week was a total bust. I hardly got any of my work done -- especially the activist stuff for Social Movements -- I didn't get a chance to do most of the things I wanted to do, I didn't look for any jobs or things like that, I'm still angsting over the summer job I wanted that won't work out, the pictures for my class yearbook all came out horrible, a bunch of other little things I won't mention here, and I've just been lethargic and unmotivated the whole time, doing nothing but sitting at the computer all day. And I go back to college tomorrow. And I have an hour-long exam on Monday morning that I barely studied for. Wonderful. :PPP

I mean, I suppose none of this is really all that bad, since none of my assignments for classes were all that urgent, and some of these other things can be fixed rather easily. Besides, I've decided that it's probably a good idea to wait to get a job until I get my driver's license, because it would be really hard for me to get a job otherwise, considering my parents' work schedules and the piss-poor public transportation around here. Not to mention my mom wants us to go on a family vacation sometime this summer, so there's that too. >_>; Things could always be worse, I suppose, but even though things aren't bad, per se, they're just......blah. Let's just hope life picks up once I get back; after the exam on Monday, I won't have any major assignments due for another month, and I plan on skipping all the schoolwork I can afford to skip, making sure I enjoy and make the most out of the last few weeks of college in the meantime.

The only things of note I did this week was start rewatching A:tLA yet again, and seeing two movies, the Italian movie The Right Distance, which was awesome, and the Korean film A Frozen Flower, which sucked horribly. I've been meaning to write a long-winded rant on A Frozen Flower (yes, I hate it that much), but I'll have to get around to it later. Maybe. ^_^;  (Oh yes, and the latest episode of Pioneer One, which was awesome as always.  :D)

Here are the only two plans I have for summer so far:
--June 4: Okkervil River will be playing at Toad's Place. It's close by, it's on a Saturday night, and I really want to go!
--June 8-12: Trip to California for my cousin's high school graduation. I'm definitely looking forward to this, especially since I love the Bay Area and I've wanted to go back since I visited three years ago. (Yes, this means spending a good portion of my 22nd birthday on an airplane, but it's all good. XD)

Also, [livejournal.com profile] queer_fest has released its list of prompts! Here are some that really caught my attention, and hope someone gets around to fill:

Cool prompts and ramblings on them behind the cut.... )

Finally, so that this post isn't completely pointless, here are some links:

--Ten adverts that shocked the world -- This is why I won't go into advertising, and you shouldn't either.
--Creepy app warns of an end to privacy
--Behind the Scenes: How Do You Get Into Amherst? -- Warning: Likely to be very disheartening and rage-inducing
--How Americans defeated efficiency with consumerism
--More Black Men Now in Prison System than Were Enslaved
--For Lovers and Fighters -- A long but EXCELLENT piece on polyamory, queer and trans* identities, and what love actually is (hint: it has nothing to do with romance) -- *HIGHLY RECOMMENDED*
--[personal profile] fightingarrival: "I have trouble following conversations on Tumblr" -- in which Sucker Punch and female empowerment is discussed, and Sady Doyle from Tiger Beatdown fucks up royally.
--The Male German Bodybuilder That Got Gandhi All Hot and Bothered
--Straight Gamer Calls for "No Homosexuality Option" in Dragon Age 2; Game Maker Responds: Shut It -- I'm only posting this link for the video. (Is it bad that I want to play this game now? XD)
--Information Is Beautiful!
--Color Picker Pen by Jinsu Park -- THIS IS SUCH A COOL INVENTION OMG *_*
--Nature photography by Henrik Just -- HOLY CRAP Y'ALL THIS STUFF IS AMAZING :O
--"Animal portraits" by Alex Castro
--DADT photography by Jeff Sheng
--Strange Maps @ Big Think
--What would've happened if Peanuts was written by Charles Bukowski.
--3eanuts, in which the last panel of Peanuts strips are omitted.

That's about it for me right now -- now time for me to stay up for a few more hours and regret it when I have to get up early in the morning. :B

quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons (Default)
Bored again, so have a meme post. ;-)

A. Stolen from [livejournal.com profile] tohellwithromeo and [livejournal.com profile] strawberrymello:

DisorderRating
Paranoid Disorder:Moderate
Schizoid Disorder:Moderate
Schizotypal Disorder:Moderate
Antisocial Disorder:Moderate
Borderline Disorder:Low
Histrionic Disorder:Low
Narcissistic Disorder:Low
Avoidant Disorder:Very High
Dependent Disorder:High
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder:Moderate

-- Personality Disorder Test - Take It! --
-- Personality Disorders --



When I took this the last time, I had "High" or "Very High" results all over the place. Glad to see I'm doing better! XD

B. One of those fill-in-the-form thingies, only because there are some new people here (stolen from [livejournal.com profile] edge_chan):

1. Name:
2. Birthday:
3. Where do you live:
4: What are you studying/What are you working as:
5. What makes you happy:
6. What are you listening to now/have listened to last:
7. An interesting fact about you:
8. Are you in love/have a crush at the moment:
9. Favorite place to be:
10. Favorite lyric:
11. Best time of the year:
12. Weirdest food you like:

RECOMMEND
1. A film:
2. A book:
3. A song:
4: A band:

FANDOM
1. Favorite Fandom:
2. OTP/OT3:
3. Icon/Fic Journal (so I can join):

PLUS
1. One thing you like about me:
2. Two things you like about yourself:
3. Put this in your lj so I can tell you what I think of you?


C. Stolen from [livejournal.com profile] hairspray:
you're my sweetheart!


quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
Dear Politics of Virtual Realities class,

A few things y'all need to remember:

1) When talking about transgender people wanting gender-neutral bathrooms, saying things like, "If you're a trans woman, why are you demanding extra things? You're a woman, use the woman's bathroom!" is a really shitty and disrespectful thing to say. As well as referring to trans* people as making a "lifestyle choice."

2) The student who tried to write the e-mail to the whole economics department blasting a certain lecture as racist, sexist, and classist is not some stupid wannabe activist who deserves to be laughed at. Yes, he probably could've worded his rant better, and I'll concede that maybe trying to send the e-mail to all econ majors and minors wasn't the smartest thing to do (not that he could, anyway, since he doesn't have the clearance). But don't blast him for ranting when he "hadn't read the paper" the lecturer wrote and lectured about -- the student did read the paper, and still thought it was racist, sexist, and classist. And the paper (and lecture) is racist, sexist, and classist, and it's only fair that someone is protesting that his tuition money is going to people who espouse those views. And don't go, "But FREE SPEECH!" at me; if this college was truly committed to free speech, it would give people an appropriate public forum (not e-mail) to criticize and debate these views. (At least we can agree that the econ department chair's response was really condescending.)

3) The Tea Party is racist. I don't care if y'all think I'm "generalizing," or that I'm being "extreme," or that I should actually know some Tea Party members personally before I say such things. "But it's impossible that everyone in the Tea Party is racist!" Sorry, but you don't know what racism actually is. Get a fucking clue.

No love,
[personal profile] quadruplify

*************************************************************************************

In case you're wondering, here's the abstract of the paper/lecture in question in point #2:

This paper borrows from the tradition of other social sciences in considering the impact that “culture” (broadly defined as the economic and social environment in which the poor live) plays in determining early, non-marital childbearing. Along with others before us, we hypothesize that the despair and hopelessness that poor, young women may face increases the likelihood that they will choose to give birth at an early age outside of marriage. We derive a formal economic model that incorporates the role a woman’s perception of economic success may play in determining her childbearing and marital outcomes. We operationalize this perception mainly by using the level of income inequality that exists in a woman’s state of residence. We empirically investigate whether low socioeconomic status (SES) women are more responsive to differences in the level of income inequality in terms of their childbearing and marital outcomes. We find low SES women have more teen, non-marital births when they live in higher inequality locations, all else equal, supporting our hypothesis. The mechanism driving this finding is less frequent use of abortion. For women in their early 20s, higher inequality reduces the prevalence of shotgun marriages among low SES women, leading to more (fewer) non-marital (marital) births.


There was that, and there's the fact that I'm behind on two response papers for that class, and I have another response paper to write for African Politics for Friday. This is about all the frustration I can handle right now. :P

Other than that, though, this week has been going fairly well. Lots of cool stuff has happened over the past few days, but I'm going to hold off talking about some of them for a little bit. Hope everyone else is doing good! :D

In the meantime, have a meme....

The "What I've always wanted to tell you" Meme


...and some music:





quadruplify: Stuart Staples (lead singer of Tindersticks) surrounded by pigeons ([Music] Tindersticks - pigeons)
1. Firstly, my thoughts and best wishes go out to everyone affected by the earthquake and tsunamis in Japan -- if you're in Japan right now and can read this, I hope you're doing OK, and if you have family and/or friends in Japan I hope you know they're doing OK too! It's assumed the students from my college studying abroad in Japan right now are all right, but the college hasn't confirmed it yet. I also know one of my former Japanese senseis is originally from Sendai, one of the worst hit cities, and if she still has family there I bet she's worried sick. D:

Anyway, here are some pertinent links:

--Al Jazeera liveblog and live feed
--current liveblog @ [livejournal.com profile] ontd_political
--[livejournal.com profile] fruitsgrow's links to live feeds and charities
--[personal profile] azuire's links to live feeds, liveblogs, and charities
--lists of charities: Yahoo || TIME
--[livejournal.com profile] help_japan/[community profile] help_japan -- fandom auction
--something worth keeping in mind

2. So I went to bed at 5 AM last night, following everything that was coming out of Japan, and I didn't get a lot of sleep (just like the past few nights), and by the time I actually felt like doing anything the sun was setting, so I took another mental health day today. Even though that was probably a bad idea, since I have a 3000-5000 word essay due Wednesday, an exam Thursday afternoon, and a 500-750 word essay due Friday. Oh well, I'll manage. :P

3. The comments on this post at [livejournal.com profile] sf_drama really skeeved me out, in particular this thread (warning: bigoted/offensive/erasing comments against genderqueer and gender non-conforming individuals). Now, it's not really my place to say what feminism is and/or should be, but wow, way to prove s.e. smith's point. Anyway, I don't plan on visiting sf_d anytime soon. >B[

4. On to happier stuff: the video for The National's "Conversation 16" was released this week. And it is the purest of beauty and the most distilled awesomeness, all in one 4-minute-20-second package. :D



What's better than reenacting movie scenes IRL? )

8. Well, this post turned into a vidspam, didn't it? :PPP Oh well, not much else that was interesting happened this week anyway. Now I'll try to go to bed early, even though I'll probably find some reason to stay up late, as usual. XD


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