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flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)
I am grateful for the celebration of giving that makes winter the holiday season. I am grateful for the Tylers, for Christmas parties in below freezing weather, and for good companionship. I am grateful for The Lion, for pudding based alcoholic drinks, and for mulled wine and tea. I am grateful for Zoey and Brett and maybe for Shane, too. New friendships are good.
flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)


When talking to conservatives or anyone who does not believe as you do, it is necessary to reframe you arguments in terms of what is morally important to your audience. To further this goal, here are some of the arguments that will have a chance of swaying opinion toward meeting in the middle.

Russia interfered in our election. - Russia interfered with our freedom to choose (freedom) and violated the sanctity of the vote (sanctity). By allowing this to go unchallenged, Trump is betraying the freedom of the American people.

Trump's conflicts of interest - There are rules laid down by the founding fathers (respect for authority) about conflicts of interest to stave off tyranny. Trump is violating those rules for his own greed (moral corruption).

Universal Healthcare & Obamacare- "Conservatives were more likely to support universal health care when they read an argument said more uninsured people led to “more unclean, infected, and diseased Americans.”" (purity)

Immigration - Immigrants love America enough to leave their country and become Americans (patriotism). They break fewer laws and are model citizens. [If proof is needed, bring up the Wall Street Journal article that explains the lower crime rate. Immigrants are 40% as likely to commit a crime as a birthright citizen.]

Reproductive rights - Women are the authorities on their own bodies. We can either respect their authority or violate their trust. (respect for authority, sanctity)

Muslim database - Our country was founded (respect for authority) on religious freedom (freedom). Muslim Americans are no less patriotic than any other citizens (patriotism).

Criminal Justice Reform - Officers with clean records are in favor of reform. (Respect for authority, purity)

Climate Change - Pollution corrupts (purity) our environment. Pollution is a disease of our own making.
flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)
1. BPAL perfumes
2. My husband, Ghost
3. My friends being silly
4. Cuteness
5. People being nice
6. Flaky pastry
7. People being competent
8. Coffee with cream
9. Hugs
10. Getting letters in the mail
11. Music that shakes my butt
12. Hot baths
13. Soft beds
14. Warm rain
15. Cracktastic storytelling
16. Lightning
17. Playing with fire
18. Kicking higher than my head
19. Fireworks
20. Clever puns and metaphors
21. Joyous reunions
22. Introducing friends to good things
23. Beautiful dreams
24. Colorful sunsets
25. Seasonally inappropriate holiday music
26. Sneezes
27. Orgasms
28. Kisses
29. Making other people smile
30. Being a sap
flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)
Since today is Guy Fawkes Day, and nearing Election day, maybe it's time to get political with the gratitude posts. I am not someone who hates compromise, like so many of my generation have been taught to be. I can see that disenfranchising tactic for what it is: a way to alienate people from the political process. If you are trained to think part of governing is somehow dirty and inherently corrupting, you can be led to avoid the whole process that much easier, led to think of everyone involved with it as tainted and amoral instead of as human people doing what they can in difficult to reconcile circumstances. Compromise allows people with diverse needs and goals to coexist peacefully. At its heart, that's what politics IS.

Accepting a less than perfect solution as part of the way to an eventual better solution is seen as demeaning. But the subtle message that compromise in a situation is always equivalent to being treated as subhuman does not serve the interests of the electorate. It serves the interests of those willing to radicalize the few while dissociating the many. And that is a bargain those in power are willing to take.

So I am grateful for the compromise that lets me live in peace with those I disagree with. I am grateful for its part in the political system that protects me from those who hate me and would do me harm. And when polling time comes, I do my part to lead my country to the best compromises that we can find for it.

And for my place in this wider community, I am grateful, too.
flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)
I think the dream I had this morning was due to the news that Texas became a swing state in this election. I dreamed that teams were chosen to compete for who would win the presidency in a sporting match and women and LGBT people were Team Clinton. All of the men competing on Team Trump just happened to be white somehow. And narrowly, by speed and sneakiness and superior predictive ability on the field, we beat them.

I'm not going to pretend that this is a prophetic dream. But I would like it to be a predictive one.
flamingsword: None can take the stars who do not reach. (Take The Stars)
I feel really uninspired and uncommunicative lately. I think I may need to spend more time with my own thoughts and less time on social media to get back to having something to say.

I need to find my enthusiasm again after having had so little energy for so long. I need my opinions and curiosity. I have turned into this person I don't recognize, and some of it is okay, but I miss my other me. I don't feel like myself.

This me survived a hard thing and I am grateful. But now that those hatches don't have to be battened down, it's time for some new growth and some unfolding of previous growth.
flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)
On to the second post today!

I am bisexual, and despite having gay friends of the family growing up, it took me until I was seventeen to figure that out. Because nobody talked about it. Nobody talked about it being valid and normal to like both.

Despite having LIFE-RUINING CHRUSHES on female friends of mine starting at the age of thirteen, it took me four years to figure it out, because there is so little social validation. And that is ridiculous and deeply sad. So I now talk about bisexuality in front of young people and on social media so that maybe I can prevent this from happening to the next generation. And if you wanted to join in on that, we'll, that would be really helpful. Please pitch in to make the world less miserable.

And Don't Forget To Be Awesome.
flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)
Today I feel grateful that I am not depressed, that I don't have to do anything desperate to avoid it any more. I am glad for perfumes and for spicy sashimi salad and for fanfiction. I am grateful that I live and work among networks of caring people who have been there for me when I needed them. I am grateful for to do lists and calendars and smartphones that help me keep my life together. I am thankful for vitamins and research and neuroscience for what is currently keeping my brain above water and hopefully helping me heal years of damage.

I have problems, but I can manage them, and I am grateful for that, too.
flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)
So for a while Ghost and I had been having this problem where, since he is on reddit a lot and sees a lot of reportage on Donald Trump which he finds hilarious, and I have this thing where Donald Trump and incompetence in public service makes me annoyed and irritated, he had been telling me several things a day which he thought were funny and I thought were irritating to the point of slowly enraging. And it was slowly sensitizing me until every time I heard Trump's name I wanted to set something on fire. Fortunately I was able to identify this mis-gearing and limit his Trumpism communications down to a point where it no longer automatically makes me grind my teeth in an agony of frustration. Hurray for communication and foresight.

I went to the Dallas Arboretum on the 7th and bought seeds. I bought plants for the front flower pots so now I have an oregano, a chrysanthemum, a lantana, and a salvia in addition to the mint and catnip and aloe. I had the spoons to buy and plant them because I have had a couple more spoons per day since about a week and a half after starting the new vitamin regimen. Which reminds me that I need to get more PQQ. So yay for all of that.

One of my coworkers died over the weekend. She was very young. I don't know if she had a stroke or if she was a suicide or what happened, but it is a tragedy any way you look at it.

Life is, as always, a mixture of good and bad things. Hold tight to what is precious, and lift up your joys.
flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)
Since I went on the extended release version of topamax last April, I have lost 30 pounds. Let me tell you why I’m not happy about that.

I didn’t care when I was unfashionably heavy or when people judged me for my weight. (Except the doctors. That part pissed me off so much.) I care when I keep having to buy new pants. I care when my bras don’t fit. I care when this medication that keeps me from having a permanent headache is eventually going to make me underweight, at which point they will stop prescribing it to me, and there isn’t anything similar that doesn’t have the same side effects as far as I know.

And then the headaches will come back. My pain levels will rise back up and I may get to the point again where I’m in too much pain to drive and think and function.

So: The Plan. The plan is to use the time I have left on topamax to find things like l-carnitine that have any kind of evidence that they spur regeneration in the brain. If you see any article that makes such a claim, could you forward it to me? Even if you think I’ve seen it, even if it may be bullshit. I’ll be doing a lot of research for this and spending my free monies on vitamins instead of fun stuff, but I am determined to make this work.

So far I have got PQQ, ubiquinol, taurine, b-1, and phosphatidyl Serine in addition to the l-carnitine and b-12/2/3/6/pantothenic acid supplements. ZOMG pillz. Wish me luck, and forward me links.
flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)
So I've been reading the book SuperFreakonomics, but I'm giving up on it, as I can feel myself getting dumber through sheer frustration. I want to learn about economics but so far there have been two barriers: 1. It's not a science, despite what it claims, and 2. It's dead boring, mostly. I had hoped a book with a wacky title would take care of the latter, and it has been interesting. But not enough to overcome my antipathy to it's many correlation/causation confusions.

I also checked out Hillary Clinton's book Hard Choices, about her time as Secretary of State, which I am expecting to learn at least a bit of modern statecraft from, yet another area in which my education is lacking. I have a lot more faith in HRC than in an economist, at any rate.
flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)
The Dating Rituals of Superheroes (The Role Reversal Remix) by igrockspock
In hindsight, when Maria asked Sam out, she shouldn’t have brought flowers or aimed for the traditional dinner invitation. After her first attempt failed, she shouldn’t have enlisted Natasha as a matchmaker.



How to use cognitive behavioral therapy to change a negative belief to a positive one. Includes journalling evidence and progress.


flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)
Let's get meta: I am grateful that meditating on what I am thankful for trains my brain to be able to better see the good things in my life. I am grateful for positive psychology and the study of good mental health practices. I am glad that people put stuff on the internet for free so that I can use it to make good choices.

I am thankful for baths, and trees, and BPAL's Hearth '05 which smells of the winter from inside by the fire. For chocolate, and toothpaste, and duvet covers. For hair dye and my willingness to use it.
flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)
I am out of practice arguing. That's the takeaway I am getting from reading The Usual Error, a book on miscommunications and how to fix them. Most things in the book that talk about arguments or hurt feelings are reminding me of relationships I had in my twenties, i.e. pre-Ghost. He and I don't really argue, or misunderstand each other much, or get worked up about it when we do. We feel generous and supported and supportive with each other and that's really nicer than anything I've ever had.

That link up there goes to a free e-book, BTW, so take advantage, y'all.

I still wonder how this relationship is going to get screwed up. I never do entirely trust to good things to maintain any sort of permanence in my life. I had to work on my attachment issues and learn to ask for things for this relationship, so it's not like I haven't had to work for this. But it still feels too easy somehow. Like nothing, good or bad, can ever be permanent or even very long-lasting. I had a relationship that was good for eight years, but it was so across several terrible arguments and rough patches. I don't know that I felt more secure in that relationship, but it at least felt like the rules of our relationship were not breaking the world.

I like my life, even though I have trouble lately breaking past the internalized ableism that makes me have to justify my existence in ways I did not used to. I have happiness in my friendships and relationships and my work. And I know, better than most people, how fragile that really is.

I know how fragile we all are, and how easy we are to lose.

I love you guys.
flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)
Today I am going with Ghost to the Dallas Museum of Art, since I have not been in a couple of years and my last trip was made less enjoyable by the lowering cloud of inability to appreciate bright colors and by having fewer spoons than normal but not knowing how to plan for that.

Update: We went to the DMA and they MOVED MY PAINTING. The Seine at Lavacourt by Monet is no longer where it used to be. And that was my favorite painting there! *whines*

Still, we had a good time, even if I did get cold and had to go home a good bit earlier than planned.
flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)
A vicious sense of fun's all well and good
But when you can't connect what good's it do?
Invulnerable and misunderstood
There's no one here to care about for you.
The first lesson is not empathy, no.
It's how to pay attention when you're bored.
Then fake empathy 'til no longer faux.
You have to see the people you ignored
As they really are, not the way you think.
Next, feel for the real person. Once you see
Feeling's logic, you'll be real. Lest you slink
Back out of this adaptive strategy:
People aren't furniture. No pranks. No lies.
Poverty of compassion is unwise.
flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)


I take the aspie quiz every five years or so, just to see how my progress is. My current score isn't as different from the last one as the last one was from the first one, so the rate of change has slowed a bit since I'm not actively studying human social interaction any more. I think since I pass as neurotypical in almost all social interactions now, I don't put as much desperate energy into studying and practicing and honing my skills at socializing. I now have points on both interaction scales, enough to get by. I don't feel hounded any more. I can rest.

In other news, I have been writing poems. I hope to have one done later tonight and posted in a couple of days.
flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)
I am grateful for aspirin. For the ability of headache medicine to keep my headaches from progressing into migraines. I am grateful for food that keeps me from losing weight and having to buy new pants. For candy that makes me feel better, even if I should eat less of it for tooth and inflammation response reasons. For the restorative power of sleep.

I am grateful for predictive text algorithms and Cosmos, and Carl Sagan. And Neil deGrasse Tyson. And science begetting beat poetry.

Vitality

Jul. 13th, 2016 05:14 pm
flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)
I miss the feeling of being fully alive, and according to positive psychology it has a role to play in leading a happy, well-adjusted life. To the end of feeling more alive, I want to plan some activities for the summer while I still have extra spoons because of the heat.

List of things that increase my vitality:
Being around bright colors. Museum trips. Gardens. Gardening.
Making people laugh and participating in laughter. Movie nights. Matinee showings.
Falling. Dancing. Listening to music that is not too crashy or crunchy or harsh.
Eating savory things like fish and salads with nuts.
flamingsword: Black Widow appears in a telephoto lens sight. (Black Widow)
In the life of Natasha Romanoff, master spy, this is a busy week for emotional revelations.

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