I try to avoid hate speech of any kind on my journal. If I slip up and say something heedless of my own privilege, please tell me - in a non-flaming way. These are teachable moments, not times to whack people over the head with a newspaper.
I could list an alphabet soup of identities, but suffice it to say that( Read more... )
I'm having to do some things to cope with the current weight of the world, and I'd appreciate your help ~
- currently on as much of a news fast as I can manage with the news everywhere. It's fine if you want to talk about the news in your own space, but please don't mention current events here unless it's on a post specifically about a news item. (For others on news fasts, I'm trying to keep them behind magic cut-tags.)
- please do not link any of my posts (even public ones) out at the moment without checking with me first; I'm having trouble people-ing right now.
- writing is helping! I just keep getting stuck. talk to me about writing, though general awareness of "different brains work differently" is greatly appreciated.
- as always, cute photos of animals, humor (light and dark humor), poetry, amazing!science and other things that make the world worth living are amazing and I appreciate you sharing.
I'm going (finally! hopefully!) to Maryland Sheep and Wool in a few weeks. I'm just wondering if any of you fine people have gone, and if so, if you know what the state of the bathrooms are? The friend I'm going with has Crohn's, so having a not-porta-potty is VERY important to our enjoyment of the festival. The fairground map looks like it has bathrooms, but I have no idea how many or if they are totally gross or if the lines are out of this world.
If the bathrooms are ridic at the fairgrounds, does anyone who has been know of a nearby-ish place with public-ish bathrooms that are non-icky? Say, a Starbucks or a McDonald's?
(and if you know someone who might know, feel free to DM me or send them a link to this)
US ex-Senator, 90, to remarry his male partner
Mr Wofford said his life was "a story of two great loves" - with his wife Clare, who died of leukaemia in 1996, and with Matthew Charlton, 40.
He wrote: " I don't categorise myself based on the gender of those I love. I had a half-century of marriage with a wonderful woman, and now am lucky for a second time to have found happiness."
LGBTQ books for middle grade readers
Thomas Jefferson Uptown Funk - from Hamilton by heresluck
In honor of Shakespeare's Deathiversary:
Secret lives of women who broke taboo to act in Shakespeare
Which Shakespearean play should you see? An illustrated flowchart
ETA to add: Prince Wrote About Women in a Way That Most Contemporary Male Artists Still Can't (via Captain Awkward's twitter)
Why knowing the history of history is vital for any writer drawing from the past
Signal boost for Beyond the Binary: help a UK magazine for non-Binary people continue running, pay its authors
Social Justice & Feminism:
Hermeneutical Injustice in Consent and Asexuality
Similarly, an asexual’s sense of self is formed by collective understandings of sexuality, leading to feelings of brokenness, abnormality, and isolation. When the collective hermeneutical resources construct sexuality as default, there is no way develop a healthy asexual selfhood. Moreover, asexuals are socially constituted as sexual where, particularly in intimate and physical relationships, it is against their interests to be seen as such. We see the harm in this played out again in issues of consent.
How Medicaid forces families like mine to stay poor
(note: might make you ALSO rage on Twitter. if you are looking for a good article to explain this dystopian system to people who don't have to deal with it, or you would like to better understand how messed up Medicaid is, then by all means.)
The secret rules of the internet: The murky history of moderation, and how it’s shaping the future of free speech
my conclusions: hire some damn anthropologists (and other social scientists) to work on moderation ethics. it is their jam.
mature tree with a beautiful canopy except for the giant hole cut out for a power line
(see a full ranty pinterest board by someone else like us!)
Why "tree trimming" doesn't actually prevent power outages (and what will)
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How perfectly nice people can make bad tree choices: story time
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Choosing the Right Trees (preferably not for your hell strip)
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tl;dr If this seems like Too Much to Think About, here is a simple guide with pictures and less wall of text about picking the right tree for the right place. And remember, you can always ask a local botanical garden or garden group or internet hive mind for help. I wouldn't necessarily trust a landscaping company as your only source, as their main job is to sell you plants (even if they're not the right plants for you).
If you're thinking, lizcommotion, I don't have room for trees! All of this applies to houseplants or smaller plants as well, just on a less-huge and less-long scale. More on picking houseplants and veggies and things later. But it is good to pay attention to the labels on plants, because if you have a shade-loving plant in the sun, it's going to be a sad sad plant.
P.S. Also, even if you don't have space, you can be like me and come up with a mental list of gorgeous trees you'd plant if you did have the right space. It is a good game.
But first, because I'm wordy
( includes fun science! )
Please relax. Seriously. It's okay to make mistakes! Mistakes will happen. That is how learning happens.
So, here is my "it's probably the easiest way to not overwater a plant that I've found" method. Please share your own method if you've found a good one!
- Check to see that your plant needs to be watered. They sell doohickeys for this --especially useful if you have soil texture issues -- but I stick my finger in to about the first knuckle and see how wet the soil is. If you have a cactus, wait for the soil to be SUPER dry. Check your individual plant species for more specific info, or if you don't know the species, see what "tropicals" or "succulents" like.
- If your plant needs to be watered, fill a sink or bucket or tub with water
- Put your plant in the tub (without watever saucer you have underneath it
- Let the plant water itself using the magic of osmosis! Leave it there for up to 30 minutes. Use trial and error to see how your plant does
- Let the bottom of the planter drain out excess water (and, yes, some soil) before you put it back where it lives. If it drains out a LOT of water, leave it for less time next time you water it.
In general, don't water houseplants til their soil gets "soggy" (like after a huge rainstorm). Soggy: if you press the soil and it goes "squish", it is TOO wet. Aim for "moist": the soil is a darker color, and it feels wet when you put your finger in, but there's still air and space in the soil. It still...crumbles? When you touch the soil, if that makes sense. (This will obviously also vary depending on the soil you use.) I...it's like baking, it's hard to describe?
Very vague general guide to how often I water types of plants. ( Read more... )
And to be perfectly honest, you are probably going to kill at least one houseplant through a watering issue. I have done so. I have also raised perfectly happy houseplants. It is okay. Seriously.
i have to do this documentation for my insurance company to prove that I still qualify for this special disability exemption thing. (Note: I will still have insurance if they reject it, just less good insurance. so don't worry on my account.)
the documentation I need relates to how, specifically, my conditions impact my daily functions and thus prevent me from working. the fun thing is my brain fog has been crap lately so I had to read their letter five times to figure that out. /o\
Request for links:
I am getting assistance with writing letters and contacting doctors, but I'm looking for help finding a comprehensive list of "Activities of Daily Living" or prohibitions to working or something of that nature. Preferably something in checklist/numeric form so I can tick of boxes and then pass it to people who can Word right now. something like "Can you open jars without assistance?" and "How hard is it to dress yourself?" and all those fun questions that are just...annoying as crap.
Note: I've also been less present on dreamwidth because my "mental energy" spoons are really fucking low right now, and so it's "do I catch up on dreamwidth OR write some words for campnano OR talk to friends OR read a chapter in this YA novel OR knit in stockinette stitch OR operate a stove OR schedule an appointment." It...is really really annoying. Like, *possibly* the most annoying thing I have dealt with in this whole disability experience, though that could be some sort of retrospective haze thing making other things feel less shitty. Anyway, I have feelz, which...will maybe share when I have more brains.
Also note: I have been around on Twitter (@ untonuggan) more often because 140 characters are something my brain can *mostly* handle (except when I get aphasia or reading comprehension issues and misread crap or can't type).
In my experience, when you get a houseplant from a nursery you are probably going to need to repot it because they are usually "potbound." this means the pot is too small for the plant's roots. you can tell if a plant is potbound by looking at the bottom of the container. if you see roots sticking out, then you need to repot the plant. (if you want a healthier plant from a nursery, check for one with less roots gasping for space.)
( what it says on the tin:repotting houseplants, plus one image )
Good representation involves thinking about what implications particular portrayals of autism have for autistic and neurotypical people who read those portrayals in the real-world contexts we live in—contexts where autistic people are often dehumanized, made invisible, otherwise misportrayed, and required to “make up for” being autistic in ways that can be impossible for or harmful to us.
On the 13 words that made me a writer
Beautiful piece on language and the limits of genre
A revelation. I still feel the excitement of it: that you can start a book this way, start a fantasy novel this way. To begin with description rather than action. The sentence fragments. The alliteration. The word umbrageous.
5 reasons fatigue isn't like normal tiredness (proving most people don't get it)
Includes a very useful fatigue scale, which is sadly only an image in the original article so I will transcribe it in comments
A Better Conversation to have than the one about trigger warnings
Getting caught up on trigger warnings is like getting caught up on handicap parking spaces. Do ramps, elevators, and sign-language interpreters cause undue strain on professors? Like my librarian friend, I care about the already-overworked and religious censorship, too. A discussion of important educational accessibility solutions can address these concerns along the way.
there is more but that is what i have spoons for atm. ^_^
Here is another poll gauging interest and also trying to figure out accessibility, time zones, and tech issues.
I am hoping that if it goes well, it can happen more than once (spoons willing) because I'm pretty sure there's no way to host a thing that cooperates with everyone's schedule and suchlike. (See: Geek Social Fallacy # 5)
( poll )
Many of my friends now seem to have actual garden space, or want to do more with herbs or houseplants or whatnot. But if you haven't absorbed a bunch of gardening stuff from Master Gardener child-of-farmer for years, it can be difficult to know "what is enough water" or "how do you pick soil". So, I was thinking of maybe doing some gardening posts? If people are interested? Plus I know enough to know what I don't know, which...there is so much to know, plus cool science.
Thus, a poll:
Are you interested in gardening posts?
Yes, for my own current garden use
Yes, for future garden use
Yes, to share with someone I know
I'd read them just to know stuff, but they're not a high priority
They're not my thing
What kinds of gardening info would you be most interested in?
How to water houseplants
Microclimates or other science! thing
Pruning: how to & seasonality
Growing plants from seed
What to watch out for on a plant label
Plants I wish I could ban from nurseries
Why being ruthless can be good for ecosystems
Growing bulbs outdoors
Other I will explain in comments
How would you describe your gardening experience? (1 is "I have never touched soil" 10 is "green thumb")
Mean: 4.20 Median: 4 Std. Dev 2.27
p.s. unrelated to current poll, am thinking of making a twitter that is me ranting about plant things that piss me off. (such as the massacres that power companies regularly do when people plant tall trees under power lines, which then weaken the trees anyway.) "plant rant" is sadly taken, but if you have any good twitter handle ideas let me know. was thinking of something Lorax related, but I find the whole "speak for the trees" theme kind of irritating even though that is kind of what I would be doing...
one of the reasons I feel people should hire more historians is that good historical methods training teaches you to find information and also teaches you to assess the inherent biases of all information and use the biases to your advantage. in the so-called Information Age, where we're hit with a firehose of social media and data, I would think having employees who could help sift through that data and/or locate some specific information for you would be invaluable. but, you know, maybe that's just me.
(what follows will be primarily US-centric, as despite my interest in global history, my experience actually studying history has been in the US)
unfortunately, mostly you don't get to the cool historical methods things until upper level history major courses, which means you had to enjoy the stuff enough to get there. social studies teachers are trying to change this, but with the focus on STEM and cuts to school funding social studies teachers are often the ones who don't actually have upper-level training in their field (sorry that I have lost my citation for this). so instead we teach students to memorize facts, as opposed to question facts that are presented and form their own opinions based on evaluating primary sources. the second would form a much more educated electorate, so...you know, perhaps there are other motivations for underfunding social sciences? or perhaps it's a fear of a challenge to American Exceptionalism. anyway, I digress.
if you are interested in learning how historians know what they know, here are some good sources:
Examples of Critical Reading
How to Read a Primary Source
How to Read a History Book
A Layperson's Reading List in American History
Some high school teachers are discussing sources and teaching methods on twitter under the hashtags #sschat and #hsgovchat
there are way more sources, but I am trying to not dive into a full fledged rabbit hole at the moment.
However, I will share a personal experience of my own morning's research rabbit hole, complete with internal meta analysis of sources, the order in which I found them, etc. You should know that it deals with white people I may be related to murdering Native Americans in the Ohio Valley, so. If you need to skip this, totally do that. I will try to post a different research rabbit hole that is an easier to read at another point.
( racism, massacres, and problematic history be here )
tl;dr To get a more wholistic view on this, I would probably contact the resource room at the National Museum of the American Indian and ask about sources from the Iriquois perspective. (And also, what term is better than "Mingo" but more specific than Iriqois, which is a huge umbrella term.) Honestly, there may not be that many surviving records because historical whitewashing, but that is where I would go to make a start. Probably it is where I will go when I have email spoons.
( final thoughts, includes some dealing with white guilt )
Anyway, that is what my historian internal thought process looks like, and in this case what it looks like when it's something related directly to me (and also hella gross historical racism that there is a "perspective" on but not an exoneration, iykwim).
It is a farming sim game a la Harvest Moon/Animal Crossing, but combines the best of a lot of games! ( general game thoughts )
I will give this warning: if you get visual seizures, this may not be the game for you? at least not on days when it snows/rains. the graphics there are very...well, they are close to being too much if I were to have a migraine day, so I would advise against the game if seizures are an issue, because there is a lot of blinky black/white contrast. :/
( personal feelz about playing this game as a queer person )
So, uh. Yeah, I'm having feels with this game. Actually the feelz started with the intro, which was more related to feelings about capitalism and labor. You may want to play the game yourself to see it, but here is a screenshot from the intro to give you an idea:
( cut for image and minor game spoiler related to image )
Oh, did I mention also that female characters can have beards? Yes. Yes they can. (I imagine there are not restrictions on male characters accessories, either. But.
Also you can have dinosaurs in your Big Coop once you upgrade. Yes. You can have dinosaurs on your farm.
ETA: I am totally cool with you sharing this entry! Though prefer not too much bookface sharing, etc.
i wiped my town in animal crossing new leaf (ACNL) and started over.
when I write the inevitable letters to my town's animals, I have been occasionally RPing as a Dark Mayor Overlord who is slightly lacking in social niceties. I mean, there are not many options for when you get to enter your own text. Mostly it has been through the postal system and also farming rare beetles on the island. Mostly I am a nice overlord!
( my inner dark humor comes out )
I am building an awesome town, though. with good planning and I designed my own tiles and stuff! I just want them to suggest actually good public works projects, not like "ooo a yield sign!" because wtf. (I mean, I should be patient, I *just* got the cafe.)
also in case you haven't seen it, this is the best thing on the internet in a bit: the setup wizard (or, hogwarts got an IT department and this is their tumblr)
i get emails, and sometimes i respond in my head (often because I read it on a tablet and typing on a touchscreen sucks) and then i forget that I did not actually write the email, and then it sits in my inbox staring at me with sad eyes for ages until it's pushed way down the list where I don't see it.
also sometimes I get notices that someone has added me to their reading list or access filter, and I go "ooo new person!" and then the same thing happens.
anyway, I just went through and did a mass adjustment and also took some people off my feed who've been inactive for a gazillion weeks. hopefully I do not wait a gazillion weeks before updating this again.
*waves to patient neglected people*
So I like to think of myself as a fairly sympathetic listener. (Doesn't everyone tho?) This is harder in person than in text, because in text I get a sense to read something I was going to say and then erase it because I was about to offer unsolicited advice.
Also in person I sometimes freak out because I am somewhat rusty with humaning and so I just sort of ramble sometimes. Also also, if a nerd-out button gets pressed sometimes I start nerding and then forget we were actually supposed to be talking about the anxiety issue until I have rambled on about this cool thing I found out when I was researching the other day for...awhile. This sometimes also hits my social anxiety button, which means I just. keep. talking.
I am working on this. It is hard.
Recently I was talking about anxiety with a person who shall remain nameless, and the shitty visceral-ness of anxiety. And how anxiety's so toxic that certain medical people recommend not doing regular breast lump self-checks because the freaking out is more toxic than the rate of cancer actually detected. (Or something something like that?)
Anyway, health research is one of my nerd buttons. (My mom is a nurse, I grew up with "I saw the coolest parasite at work today!" as dinner table conversation. Then in college I was a peer sexual health educator and thought about doing public health, which basically means my filter for "these are things we don't talk about in public restaurants" or "check if there are children here before launching into certain topics" is something I have trouble gauging sometimes.)
( cn: gardasil, cancer, sexual health and sexytimes, trying to adapt binary medical language to more trans inclusive, spendy things if you don't have insurance bc this is America dammit, here be vaccines )
tl;dr If I am talking to you -- online or off -- and I nerd out at you about a thing and it actually increases your anxiety, please tell me to stop. I am probably telling myself to stop in my head but I forgot that I have the option to do that because I hit Awkward Land. I'm working on it.
And usually I am not this bad. I think. Also maybe now you know a thing about the vaccine for HPV that you did not know before! Or maybe you did.
(Also, if you want to nerd out about cool medical research and/or sexual health, lmk. I am probably down for that, even if it includes parasites. Probably especially if it includes parasites.)
i have some sort of death plague and it is tiring to sit at the computer or make tea and i'm declaring dreamwidth amnesty, possibly also for some future posts.
yesterday i thought i was feeling better and i was all "not gonna overdo it not gonna overdo it" and then i did overdo it and slept forever and the cats are cranky because they do not like me sleeping not on schedule for more than 3 days. (which is usually my limit for flare recovery, but this is not a flare.)
will be probably online less. sorry.
As such, I have a lot of knowledge passed down about how to find the bargains. I was going to write a whole thing about thrift stores *and* yard sales *and* estate sales, but the thrift store one got really long so I will just split this up into parts.
Pro tip before I start: If you are donating to thrift stores, please don't donate damaged clothes. Those of us on limited incomes and with brain fog really don't want to waste our money on pretty shiny things we then can't use, or waste brainz on sorting through damaged things.
Tricksy Hobbit Thrift Store Tips:
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a note on ethics and the politics of thrifting:
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No one is perfect is what I am saying, and one method of shopping is not superior to another. If Wal-Mart is where you find clothes you can afford and that fit you, okay. If you need work-appropriate clothing and the only way you can get them is to shop at a Bespoke Tailor because of your particular needs, no judgement.
( one medium image )
Honestly I wrote it down because I invent lots of hat patterns, and often for people who don't need a 20" hat (because all the stores sell 20" hats!) and some people I know want to knit some of those hats and I figured I should just share the instructions and maybe not just give them a page full of scribbles and arrows.
So yes! It is pretty now and has both charted and written instructions, and I tried to make them as easy to read with brain fog etc as possible. And also printer-friendly so you wouldn't get weird line breaks halfway through a pattern repeat and accidentally leave off that bit of the pattern, and also underlining important things like "add a stitch here."
FWIW I really whole-heartedly endorse Uptown Worsted (an Acrylic). Usually I cannot deal with acrylic and am a huge wool snob, but this stuff is amazing and soft and sells for under $6 a ball at my LYS.
Hope you enjoy. Feel free to share, it's under a Creative Commons Share-Alike Attribution license because honestly I'd be chuffed if someone felt like selling some of these on their Etsy shop or whatnot and chucking a few dollars towards Doctors Without Borders.
What I'm going to do: put on a bunch of layers and brave the cold and be in the car for ages and go to therapy and talk about hard but important things (it's at the point where I have a list). also run errands like "pick up eye drops from the pharmacy because I have dry eyes and it sucks." Tomorrow, go to physical therapy, so I have to make sure I do my exercises again today.
(note: I can't find a transcript, so audio-only AFAIK)
John Horgan examines how Americans seem to have a completely different attitude toward war than we did thirty years ago. He takes us on a stroll through Hoboken, asking strangers one of the great unanswerable questions: "Will humans ever stop fighting wars?" Strangely, everyone seems to know the answer. Robert Sapolsky brings us farther afield - to eastern Africa, where a population of baboons defies his expectations of violent behavior. Robert is surprised to feel hopeful for a gentler future, but then primatologist Richard Wrangham asserts that their aggressive nature is innate, unchanging, and hanging over them like a guillotine.
There's some evolutionary bio vs evolutionary psych annoying bits in there, and I did kind of fall asleep towards the end (on purpose, when I'm in pain I can't sleep bc pain is all I can think about so I put on podcasts).
However. In the middle there's a part about a baboon group that becomes less violent after a disease wipes out a bunch of its alpha-males (or as my partner put it, after their version of 4chan died). Ahem. Anyway even when new alpha males have been introduced, they have yet to revert to previous behavior patterns.