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kitties no trolls allowed off topic open thread

Open Thread for Personal Stuff: Mid-August 2015 Big Shoes Edition

Damn it, even my shoes are too big.
Damn it, even my shoes are too big.

An open thread for personal stuff. As always with open threads, no trolls, no MRAs, etc.

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contrapangloss
5 years ago

Long workweek of longness is 5/8ths complete. Yay me! Also, now that I have more than the time on the elliptical during job sanctioned workout time to actually read…

@catgirl,

Seconding what everyone after me said about this dude. All the red flags. All of them.

You do get to make your own decisions, but I highly, highly recommend running away from dude, not giving him any additional contact information, and blocking his number on your phone/blocking him on social media.

He’s scary.

I don’t like him, and I haven’t even met him. I’ve met a couple of his sort, though, and they are scary.

If it helps, one thing I did with my StalkerMcStalker was collected all correspondence, jotted down what I remembered my feelings were at the time, and what I feel in hindsight looking them over, and emailed that collection to a few friends (2 women, 1 man) whose judgement I trusted (because I didn’t trust my own at the time).

Their reactions helped me figure things out, and helped me feel a little more secure.

If you need internet hugs or kitten gifs, just ask and ye shall receive.

misseb47
misseb47
5 years ago

Thanks Wanda and EJ. ๐Ÿ˜€

Wanda, I don’t know what they want either, I am not sure THEY know what they want exactly, either. I am sure they go for confidence, but how much confidence do they want us to have? Confidence is great, but there is such thing as being a cocky arsehole. I know they want personality, but how much? There is also such thing as having too much personality. Employers seem to focus on these two things at the expense of experience, qualifications and skills, especially confidence. They seem to think more about who is ‘going to be a good fit for the company’ than their actual ability to do the job. I got turned down for several jobs just because I was nervous in the interview. I answered every question well and even asked a few appropriate questions of my own. And I wasn’t that nervous, just got slightly tongue tied sometimes. I got turned down for another job because ‘my personality did not shine through until near the end of the interview’. *eye roll*. I was just a little nervous and it took me a little while to loosen up. That is all. It is annoying. Employers worry too much about interviews and how confident the person is. I mean who gives a shit if a potential employee got nervous and a bit tongue tied during the interview? As long as they are qualified, experienced and provided great answers to the questions, who gives a fuck? Employers need to get their priorities sorted out.

“Also, when I do get the interview, I somehow dick it up because I get nervous and stutter a lot, and my vocabulary goes out the window. I honestly just called someone today just to set up an interview and it took me at least five tries to get out โ€œI noticed youโ€™re looking to fill an opening I saw in the paperโ€. Yeesh. Iโ€™m a mess.”

No you’re not! *hugs*
It is normal for people to get nervous and stammer a little. Practice interviews help, but they are not nearly as good (or bad) as the real thing. My employment agency made us have mock interview sessions with total strangers. It was a little nerve racking, but it still did not compare to the real thing. Getting real interview experience helps. The first few interviews I had were real doozes. LOL. But I got better with experience and you will too. ๐Ÿ˜€ As for getting more interviews, using your initials instead of you full name like EJ suggested would help.

“Itโ€™s weird. I like to think thereโ€™s nothing wrong with meโ€“ just something inherently wrong with the system. Itโ€™s nice at least to know that Iโ€™m not alone in this.”
Yep, it’s not you, the system is messed up. And it is nice knowing that I am not alone, too! *hugs*

EJ-Thank EJ. ๐Ÿ˜€ I can imagine that it would have been demeaning! O.O I hope you have found something better.

Even though I find my current job mind numbing and intellect sapping, I am very grateful for it. It is a step in the right direction and it is a sign (I hope) that things are changing for the better. Well, I see it as a positive sign, at least. Especially after a long, dark period of unemployment.

“In my opinion, our society puts a lot of emphasis on the idea that you need to go into the graduate intake of any company directly from university, and be whisked straight into the starting level of the career you plan on developing. Like most social archetypes, it does happen in some cases but exists mostly as a way of making everybody else feel bad about themselves and so work harder to catch up. The ranks of white collar workers, in my experience, are full of people who came to their posts via long and weird entry paths.”

True, that. There were no internships for criminology (which would have helped), but there was an emphasis on the whole graduate intake thing. Such as signing up for a graduate program for the government or Australian Institute of Criminology or the Australian Bureau of Statistics. I applied for the graduate role Australian Bureau of Statistics while I was studying for my Masters, but I was not successful. Didn’t even get through the shortlisting process. Already overqualified, perhaps? I don’t know. I did not have the confidence to apply for these things while I was an undergrad. My grades were only starting to pick up. It was only while I was in my final year of my undergrad and while I was doing the course work for my Masters that I realized that I had any intelligence at all! ^^; I spent all my school years struggling and feeling stupid. Lol! I’m probably just a bit dyslexic. Anyway. I just didn’t think I was capable of working in such a role (or any role, for that matter) and didn’t fancy my chances. I know what I am capable of now and I now know that am actually pretty smart. ๐Ÿ™‚

misseb47
misseb47
5 years ago

*or as bad.

weirwoodtreehugger
5 years ago

Even 15 years ago when I was in college and taking industrial and organizational psychology, they knew that job interviews are not at all an indicator of job performance. The same with recommendations. I think there are two reasons they’re still relied on so much.

The first is cost. It’s much cheaper to conduct an interview than it is to bring in candidates to perform tasks that are similar to the job they’ll be performing and observe them. At least in the short run it is. In the long run, hiring people that are mediocre or poor based on personality or connections has got to cost.

The second is, it preserves the status quo. People who are white, male, not obviously queer, from a higher income background etc. are going to be favored in interviews because weโ€™re socialized to see people in those groups as more likeable and confident. People who are economically privileged are more likely to have connections that get their foot in the door at white collar positions. It’s not really a surprise that a hiring system that benefits the most privileged in society is going to be hard to shake.

weirwoodtreehugger
5 years ago

I meant competent. Not confident.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
5 years ago

Supposedly a decision to hire is made in the first 15 seconds of any interview. Basically you walk through the door and there’s an instant ‘yey or ney’ mindset.

Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
5 years ago

… Ugh. So, my ex-husband (I know, long story) has suddenly reappeared after almost eight years, tracking me down to a browser game I play and stalking my profile there. I don’t know whether he wants to harass me or reconnect with me, but I don’t intend on finding out; I’ve already blocked his lying, cheating, thieving douche ass and the game’s admins have promised to keep several close eyes on him. Still, I’m terrified. If he found me there, he could find me anywhere. Again: Ugh. x_x

ej
ej
5 years ago

@SFHC
I am so sorry that is happening to you. It’s good that you blocked him and it’s really good to hear that the admins are supporting you. You have every right to be scared and I really hope you can keep him away.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
5 years ago

@ SFHC

That’s horrible (but getting so familiar in these internet times). Hope you can successfully get shut of him.

ej
ej
5 years ago

In other news, I have to move out of the student accommodations tomorrow. They only offer 51-week contracts and last year I only had to move out for a week (which makes sense), so I assumed it would be the same this year. For some reason, they have pushed back the date to September, so I will be without a home for three weeks, instead of on. I didn’t realize this until yesterday (because I didn’t check the date closely when I rebooked for next year), so I have been running around trying to make arrangements so that I can have a place to stay for the next three weeks. It looks like I will be staying somewhere different each week, so it’s not ideal, but at least I have somewhere to go.

EJ (The Other One)
EJ (The Other One)
5 years ago

@ej and M:
Hugs. I hope things work out for the best.

M, you’ve always impressed me with what a badass you are, and the fact that you dealt with this as fiercely as you did continues to show just how little shit you take. I have absolute confidence that anyone who crosses your lines is going to get what’s coming to them, and that definitely includes exes who come back uninvited.

@namesake:
Ugh, that sucks. Moving around and not having fixed living arrangements is such a tiring thing to have happen. I’m really glad you have people who’re willing to help. Let me know if there’s anything I can do as a fellow BritMammotheer.

Tracy
Tracy
5 years ago

@Catgirl – as another person who took the plunge with a person like this… listen to your intuition. He doesn’t sound like a nice person at all.

Graphic design peeps – why not freelancing? I freelance as a web designer and copywriter (soon to be narrowing my focus to mainly copywriting/branding for a specific market). Join some online communities of people who do freelance web work, and you’ll likely find plenty of need for graphic designers (banners, ads, sidebar graphics, social media backgrounds etc) If you’re interested, theme design for WordPress and other CMS’s can bring in some steady work, esp. if you hook up with people who do the code and need the people to do the design.

Wanda
Wanda
5 years ago

@katz: Great idea! Maybe I’ll do that. ๐Ÿ™‚

@EJ: Yeah, but if I got the job, then they’d be wondering why I stopped stuttering. XD I actually don’t stutter in real life. Just at job interviews, because I’m trying to formulate the best answer on the spot, which is rarely something I have to do in real life. The only time I’m really eloquent is either in writing or if I’m in the middle of a really good rant. ๐Ÿ˜‰

@misseb47: Oh, I hate that. Especially when they expect you to have a sense of humor in your resume/cover letter, which sucks, because my sense of humor is kind of inappropriate and/or nerdy, and I can’t be inappropriate and/or nerdy when dealing with strangers, so I end up with forced jokes. Ugh.

My aunt works in human resources, and they say they test all their managers after their interviews, because they found people who interviewed well weren’t the best managers. The test has been much more successful in figuring out personality types that fit management best. I’d much rather take a test or do “homework” to prove my ability as opposed to public speaking. I can see if it is a sales job or something… but graphic designers are usually in the backroom operations. I’ve had eight or so interviews, so one would think I would have worked out the bugs by now. The problem is that I’m mostly terrible with people. Like, the only reason I had friends in college was because I made friends with my freshman roommate and made friends with her friends. My sister stole all my “good at socializing” genes, ha.

I’m glad you found your stride with your education. ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m pretty dumb at common sense things, which school doesn’t reward, but really good at taking tests and memorization, which school rewards. Everyone has their strengths.

@SFHC: I’m so sorry. ๐Ÿ™ Stay strong!

@Tracy: I went on Elance briefly, but every job on there is like “We’ll pay 5 bucks an hour to recreate our whole website!” This is great for people living in India for which 5 bucks an hour is a good wage. Not so good for people in the US. >_> I did land this job online “teaching” digital illustration that pays $100 plus 20% of enrollment, but it’s way more work than it’s worth. If you know a better way to do it, then let me know. XD It’d help if I knew web design, but I just know the basics. What I’d love most to do is make money with illustration. Here’s a book cover I made for my own novel:

http://40.media.tumblr.com/0616d9ef6e3306e832f9ddfcde4e56b5/tumblr_nj42pzR1h91rey5qco1_500.jpg

(I just want to show everyone this because I’m proud of it, aha).

I applied for freelance work as a book cover illustrator, but that hasn’t panned out. /sigh

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
5 years ago

When I was interviewed they asked me what my biggest fault was. I told them it was that I was too honest.

They said they didn’t think that was a fault.

I told them I didn’t give a fuck what they thought.

dhag85
5 years ago

@SFHC

Ugh, that’s terrible. I never get why dudes to this.

My wife had trouble for a long time with an ex (not even a proper ex boyfriend, just some guy she fucked a few times years ago) who kept trying to contact her a few times a year, especially on her birthday. No matter how many times she told him off, he kept making new FB accounts to get past the block, and similar sleazy behavior. Can we put some sort of collar on these guys, that zaps them whenever they misbehave?

dhag85
5 years ago

General question: Does anyone here know what happened with the commenter Mouse Farts who used to be a regular here a few months back? Are they ok?

epitome of incomprehensibility

@Wanda – Wow, that looks really good. The light especially is well done: good highlights on the skin and jewelry, not too many highlights in the eyes (I find some artists put too many highlights in the eyes when doing realistic drawing – it’s a fun cartoon convention, and it can make eyes look expressive, but it doesn’t really fit when the eyes are in shadow.)

(Some drawing/painting/crafts experience here, though not in graphic design.)

K
K
5 years ago

This week is going poorly. Things are broken, tradesmen are unreliable, and I lack the energy to cope with it all.

On the other hand, I have this awesome volunteer position coming up with a bunch of free in-house training that I never thought I’d just be able to get. I applied for the job even though the advert had next to no info on it, and I’m really glad I did because it’s a secret holy grail. Like I’ve already had one sensory awareness course and I’m booked in for another next month, and Floortime training. They do AAC, BSL and Makaton, epilepsy awareness, moving and handling, first aid, and many other things. All free for volunteers as well as paid staff. And all going well, in six months I can apply for paid positions if they come up. Even if not, the PVG and the training means I’m gaining super important and usually expensive things while volunteering and gaining experience, so it’s a lot of win.

I have some of you on my tumblr so some of you will already have seen or donated, but I’m also doing independent autism research since I’m taking a year out of uni right now. It’s regarding harmful attitudes and treatments in the US e.g. magical mineral supplements/chlorine dioxide, behavioural therapies aimed at minimizing the appearance of autism, shock treatments etc. etc. I’m fundraising for a trip which is just a small part of it, and I will forever love anyone good enough to share or donate. There are also crafty rewards for those who wants them. And I’d also take straight commissions if anyone wants anything crocheting. My gofundme is gofund.me/ykk6ed5d5 and if anyone wants to talk about my research, help me out about it (like if you know one single thing about the topic by all means jump in my inbox) or commission crafted items my email is contrarycat@hotmail.co.uk and my tumblr is goonst.tumblr.com

Wishing you all well ๐Ÿ™‚

misseb47
misseb47
5 years ago

Thank you Wanda! http://erinhunter.katecary.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/tumblr_n7q4lfIClr1tf24n2o1_500.gif That book cover is beautiful by the way! The dude on the left looks very familiar. Who did you base him on?

Wanda
Wanda
5 years ago

@Alan: Ha! Nice. Interview questions are so weird though. Like “Where do you see yourself in five years?” I don’t know, working at a job I don’t hate? What do you want me to say? “President of the United States”?

@epitome: Thanks! Eyes are hard because they’re made of a different substance than flesh, so light catches them differently. I had a reference for these, so I knew not to go too shiny on the eyes. XD People also assume they’re white, but usually the whites of your eyes are pretty gray in comparison to true white, and they reflect the light of your skin, so often they end up grayish-pink.

@K: Congrats on the volunteering opportunity! ๐Ÿ™‚

@misseb47: Thanks! The left is a random model I found on Google Images, so I don’t know who he is. The right is Dominique Hollington, who is a professional model, which is great, because that meant I was able to find plenty of other great pics of him to use for the second and third book cover.

http://media-cache-ec0.pinimg.com/736x/8a/f3/2c/8af32ca65f2621beeb630b58776841ac.jpg

A lot of times I’ll go through ModelMayhem, too, because I can find a much larger variety of models there who aren’t always traditionally beautiful, and you can search by hair color, eye color, height, weight, race, etc., which makes finding a real life reference much easier.

Wanda
Wanda
5 years ago

Holy shit that ended up being big. Sorry. ๐Ÿ™

catgirl
catgirl
5 years ago

Hey everyone,

Thanks for the advice. I talked to a friend as well and he basically told me similar things everyone told me but also reminded me I have good instincts and to trust them.

The creep was pestering me to hang out recently, and I kept filling my time with errands/things to do for my move. I did vaguely entertain the idea of hanging out with him, but it filled me with so much dread and fear.

I told him I did not want to hang out. He washed me the best in my new city. He does not know my employer or address. I think it’s fine for now. I just fear potential retaliation because I’ve faced horrific online bullying/ retaliation that severely slandered my reputation in the past. Sometimes the bullying/slander followed someone pretending to be perfectly calm and ok with everything.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
5 years ago

Hi Catgirl

Hope everything does work out for you. You were right to trust your instincts.

Might I suggest you get hold of Gavin De Becker’s book “The Gift of Fear”; I think you might find it helpful/reassuring that you’ve done the right thing.

catgirl
catgirl
5 years ago

I feel a mixture of relief and sadness. I think perhaps the sadness just comes from realizing that someone toxic hurt me, and the few decent conversations were just covers for a crappy interior.

I’m happy to move on and start a new chapter. I will definitely check out the book recommendation, Alan! Thank you so much. Everyone here is so wonderful.

gilshalos
5 years ago

I just had to justify calling MRAs a slimepit on FB. The guy agreed once we sorted out definitions, but I’m left sobbing hysterically, and I really want to cut myself. Why coulsn’t I just not have made the comment?
(Hi, this is me 14 days into the new meds…)

gilshalos
5 years ago

Also, don’t worry, I won’t cut myself. It’s just been almost a decade since I wanted to so much.

EJ (The Other One)
EJ (The Other One)
5 years ago

@gilshalos:
The rest of the world is going to have to work hard this week to find something more badass than your refusal to be silenced. Assholes will always leap on people who dare to speak up, and your ability to do it anyway is inspiring.

Many, many hugs.

ryeash
5 years ago

@catgirl

Hugs if you would like them ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m glad you have support from friends, and I hope you find a partner who is worth your effort and affection and returns it in kind. I’m sorry that jackass pretended to be a decent person and hurt you. Good on you for recognizing him for what he is and that you deserve better treatment. And all the luck for your move and the new job ๐Ÿ™‚

@gilshalos

No one has to justify calling MRAs a slimepit. They are a slimepit. That guy is probably defensive because he agrees with their slimepit views. Call him a stupid jerk and don’t check the replies. I’m lucky in that regard–I can’t check replies to FB page threads on mobile, and I don’t have anything else right now. So I just insult bigots and skip merrily on my way. They can bluster to themselves all they want, and I just see who “likes” my post ๐Ÿ˜‰

Do you have anyone you can go to when you feel like cutting? It helps me to talk to my sister or my partner, both of whom have been there for previous cutting episodes. Just telling someone that I’m in that amount of pain keeps me from following through. Do what you have to do to get through the next few weeks. I don’t know if this helps, but I was still pretty suicidal a couple weeks or so into my new meds. Things evened out, and I’m not in that place anymore. It took distracting myself with everything I possibly could during the weeks I was waiting for the meds to kick in, but I’m through it. It’s definitely normal to still be in the same place early on in a new regimen, though.

Thoughts and strength to you. And all the rest of my hugs.

gilshalos
5 years ago

Thank you all. I’m feeling better already, new meds being all Bohemian Rhapsody-like (ok big high, big,low) Trouble is the person that most understands my wish to cut is also a cutter, and we came to an agreement NOT to discuss it cos it didn’t lead to the one wanting to cut stopping, but the one not wanting to starting ๐Ÿ™‚

gilshalos
5 years ago

Appointment with doc to discuss new meds tomorrow…still not sure what I am going to say. Appointment with psych who recc’d new meds 11 days later…maybe I’ll have worked out what to say by then

ryeash
5 years ago

I would suggest just telling the doc honestly how the new meds are working so far. They can either reassure you or give the regimen a temporary tweak to help you through to your other appointment. I’ve had to have new meds bolstered by a low dosage of an antidepressant until they kick in. I have Bipolar I, so antidepressants aren’t good in the long run, but they’re sure useful in small amounts sometimes.

Anyway, I’m glad you’re at least feeling a little bit better. Do you know anyone you trust enough to talk about cutting with who wouldn’t be triggered? They won’t completely understand, but that doesn’t exclude them from being able to help.

gilshalos
5 years ago

My current issue is…well..not bi-polar. Cos I am assured that bi-polar means maybe 3 mood switches in a year. The reason I am being psych-reassessed is that I was switching beween manic and my normal low 2-3 times a week. New drug is a mood stabiliser (though my doc assures me has also been licensed for anti-D) I think the current situation is best desc’d as ‘experimental all round’

gilshalos
5 years ago

Am I more stable than before I started this drug ? Yes. So I go from stable to screaming hysterical tears and well..screams..? Yes.

gilshalos
5 years ago

Also, met up with someone quitting the same anti-D as me. Cept he is American and it was cos it cos him 40 $ a month. Me…just it was less useful after a decade of use.

contrapangloss
5 years ago

… hope the new drug starts working well for you.

I’m home. Cuddling with my pups. Bailey doesn’t put much weight on his foreleg, but he was happy to see me! And Gussie-Goober was a wiggle-dog. Even the cat came over and was cuddly… until he figured out I wasn’t going to give him an extra meal. Then he skulked off to sulk. He might be cuddly again soon. ๐Ÿ™‚

Monzach
Monzach
5 years ago

It’s been a while since I’ve commented on here. Hope everyone has been doing as well as possible. ๐Ÿ™‚

I just had to write a bit of a warning/recommendation (a weird combo, I know) for Antony Beevor’s “The Second World War”. I’ve been reading it for three weeks now. It’s a great read, and a very broad look at the event between 1939-1945. However, the whole book requires a huge trigger warning. Seriously, the book is less than 1000 pages long, but it has taken me this long to read simply because I have to put the book down every few pages just to keep my remaining sanity intact. There are chapters in the book that took me three or four days to read due to the constant pauses. Still, it’s a very informative book, so if you think you can handle the bad parts, it’s definitely the best book on the subject that’s out there.

Sorry for being off-topic in a way, I just needed somewhere to write about this.

Dawn Incognito
Dawn Incognito
5 years ago

I also have something that I need to write about and don’t know where else. I suppose I could try one of the crisis lines but it doesn’t exactly feel like a crisis.

TW for details on an oddly specific suicidal impulse:

I feel like backstory is needed. I have a fun history of suicidal impulses. We were discussing what was going on at age 12 in the Jared thread; I remember 12 as the year I thought about hanging myself in the closet. I haven’t done anything about them and don’t plan to do anything about them but I’ll still get sudden images of stepping out into incoming traffic or jumping off the balcony, etc.

Last night I was out for dinner with my boyfriend at one of our favourite restaurants. The restrooms are down a steep flight of stairs. And I had a very clear vision of “slipping” on the stairs. Down I go with a crash and a bang and everyone comes running and 911 is called and I’ll have someone there who cares about me who hopefully won’t suspect a thing.

The whole thing played out in my head but I can’t say I really considered it. Too many variables, for one thing. And I have people who I love who love me too and I want to keep being around them. And the world, though baffling and terrifying, is also really beautiful. So I stick around because who knows what’s going to happen.

But that one really concerned me. I think because it was one of the first times I thought about faking my own accidental death.

(I’m on meds, just on a waiting list for a new doctor. Though do I tell a psychiatrist about something like this?)

Paradoxical Intention
5 years ago

Dawn Incognito | August 20, 2015 at 11:35 pm
I also have something that I need to write about and donโ€™t know where else. I suppose I could try one of the crisis lines but it doesnโ€™t exactly feel like a crisis.

[…]

(Iโ€™m on meds, just on a waiting list for a new doctor. Though do I tell a psychiatrist about something like this?)

I would, if you feel comfortable enough to do so. This does sound like something that should be addressed.

contrapangloss
5 years ago

Dawn, hugs if you want.

I’d say this would probably be a good thing to tell a doc.

katz
katz
5 years ago

I am in a negative thought spiral. Does anyone have suggestions for getting out of one?

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
5 years ago

@ Katz

Pick a subject that you’re interested in and you enjoy chatting about. I’ll chip in with some comments and then SFHC can correct all my mistakes.

katz
katz
5 years ago

Aw, you are nice. Ummm…I’m enjoying Tales from the Borderlands. Are there other new games that people are enjoying/looking forward to?

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
5 years ago

You know how there’s nothing worse than when blokes just dominate conversations and don’t let women get a word in edgeways. I think it’s important to just shut up and listen to women; be interested in what *they* have to say, rather than be all ‘me, me, me’.

Easy in this case, as I don’t have a clue about computer games; I’m afraid I don’t play them.

Notwithstanding that I suppose I’m obligated as a man to say “Hey, stop oppressing me by invading a male space!!!”

contrapangloss
5 years ago

…I like minesweeper?

Not much of a gamer, but minesweeper is a good old friend.

My usual downward spiral counter is either finding a fuzzy critter to hug or playing hamster dance remixes on repeat, with the occasional Bananaphone mixed in…

…success with method 2 varies.

katz
katz
5 years ago

Misread that at first and thought that was your minesweeper strategy. Not that Bananaphone wouldn’t help.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
5 years ago

@ Katz

If unsolicited admiration from a stranger on the internet helps, I can say I really love your blog. I had a trawl there to see if there were any subjects I could comment on.

You write very well. One thing I’ve noticed is that when someone knows about a subject and raises interesting points then even someone with no knowledge or previous interest in that subject gets drawn in. So even your pop culture articles got me thinking. I particularly liked the Black Widow stuff. It’s a bit of a running joke with some of my friends that she’s my perfect woman for various reasons; but I’ve only seen a couple of the films and not read any of the comics. At least now I have something to retort with!

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
5 years ago

@ Katz

My fave article so far is the one about gender in fantasy. It actually inspired me to try writing a story; but I’m stymied by the fact I don’t know a huge amount about Zulus, or indeed dragons.

I suppose the ‘why is everything modelled on medieval Europe?’ answer may be that, for many writers, that’s their historical context. Even if they grew up in the US, history teaching probably has a European bias. Like you say, a lot of the ‘understanding’ owes more to clichรฉ and myth than reality.

I wonder why writers are so reluctant to take advantage of the freedom world building from scratch presents. I can see an argument that the reader needs some frame of reference to identify with; but it’s not even like we’re asking for people to tell a story from a completely alien point of view (although for one would like that).

Would people really find the idea of a society where women were just as likely to be warriors or scientists or leaders as men *that* implausible?

If the answer is ‘yes’ then that says a lot about society. If the answer is ‘no’, yet we still don’t have those stories, then that says a lot about society too; possibly the same thing.

katz
katz
5 years ago

Would people really find the idea of a society where women were just as likely to be warriors or scientists or leaders as men *that* implausible?

You know, they really will! Like I was working on a culture once where societal roles were determined by birth order and all second-born children join the army, and I had people swearing up and down that society would fall if every second-born girl was in the army, because of birthrates. Same kind of people who insist that Game of Thrones absolutely has to be violent and sexist because realism.

Glad you are enjoying my blog; it is mostly just random thoughts.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
5 years ago

@ Katz

Gawd, now you’ve got me doing maths!

Can’t figure out why that would lead to the downfall of society. What were their arguments? Does it imply that everyone who joins the army will be killed? Or is the theory that people in the armed forces won’t ever have kids anyway?

Every woman in Israel (just about) joins the army for at least two years, and there are plenty of Israelis.

Even if all the women went ‘career’ and for whatever reason didn’t have kids, you’d have to assume that no families ever had more than two kids. Is that right? I’m rubbish at stuff like this.

Random thoughts or no, I still like the stuff. The women in combat thing is one of my fave topics. I’m a big fan in reality and I’d love to see stories where this was explored.