An Actual Update: Fannish Edition

Oct. 21st, 2017 06:29 pm
fairestcat: Dreadful the cat (Default)
[personal profile] fairestcat
Sorting out my mood stabilizers gave me back my ability to read for pleasure and it also gave me back my fannishness.

I've been reading a lot of books, but I've also been reading a shitton of fanfic for the first time in years and just loving it.

I tend to multifannishness with periods of intense focus on one specific fandom. For most of the summer that was Les Miserables, which is a great fandom to binge-read, but a highly inconvenient fandom to want more fic for in 2017, as it's not dead, but definitely doesn't attract as many really good authors as it did a couple of years ago.

Les Mis is really actually two fandoms with one name. There's the Valjean/Javert portion of the fandom, and there's the Les Amis d'ABC portion of the fandom.

I've read and loved some Valjean/Javert in the past, but right now I'm ALL about Les Amis.

The thing about Les Amis fandom is this: in canon almost every character dies, but fandom being fandom says "fuck that shit," and instead you can read thousands upon thousands of ways for everybody to live.

Most Les Amis fic is AUs. Modern AUs. High School/College AUs. Dystopic SF AUs. Fantasy AUs. Soulmates. A/B/O Universes. If you can think of it, someone has probably written it.

But there is a common theme to most of it, a story I needed to read over and over this year. It's a story about queer, radical revolutionaries who get to be happy and maybe even win a little. Not all the great fic is overtly political, sometimes they're radicals in different ways, but that radical queerness is always there at heart, and it feeds my soul.

Also, Enjolras/Grantaire is basically radical idealist who's terrible at human emotion meets cynical alcoholic who's feels too much, and it's gold. If you like pairings who start out the story completely incomprehensible to each other and fight a lot on the way to falling in love, this is definitely the fandom for you. I love stories about people who make each other better, and that's very much the case for these two.

I'm working on a Les Mis recs post but it's rather long, and I've got a lot of other things going on right now, so I'm not sure when I'll get it finished.



Just when I was starting to despair of no more Les Mis fic, [twitter.com profile] bonibaru and [twitter.com profile] thatmissp started talking about Shadowhunters and linking to stuff. So I watched one of bonibaru's vids and went, "ooh, pretty, also very, very queer". And then misspamela posted a snippet of a fic she'd written and I read it and said, "okay, I definitely need more of this." And then I discovered that it's on netflix in Canada, and decided I'd give it a shot.

I watched the entire 13-episode first season in 3 days.

As my two enablers warned me, it's not exactly good TV. It's a trashy supernatural teen soap opera, and it embraces that. But I actually love that about it, it has no interest in being subtle and nuanced, and that makes it kind of charming and endearing. It's just so earnest.

Also, very, very queer. It's an ensemble show and within that ensemble the romance that gets the most attention and best development is the queer one, and it fills me with joy.

Magnus Bane is a flamboyant, hedonistic, bisexual and immortal warlock. Alec Lightwood is a young, uptight, closeted supernatural demon-fighter. They meet and Magnus immediately goes, "I want that one," and Alec suddenly completely loses the ability to speak. It's adorable.

And of course there's angst, and Alec is a self-sacrificing idiot a lot, but it's also a surprisingly honest and realistic relationship arc for a supernatural teen soap opera.

Anyway, I've just started season two and I'm enjoying it immensely. It's not the kind of fandom I expect to become passionate about long-term, but right now it's providing a much-needed shot of sparkly queerness in my life.

An Actual Update: Real Life Edition

Oct. 21st, 2017 04:06 pm
fairestcat: Dreadful the cat (Default)
[personal profile] fairestcat
Look, I can makes posts sometimes that AREN'T either music or book reviews! Who knew?

This summer was filled with reading, multiple trips to a friend's cottage in the Gatineaus, and learning to be dog owners. That last has been particularly exhausting, but we're getting there. And he is a sweetheart.

This is Bogart:
sitting dog

all about Bogart, with more pictures and a cameo from Dreadful )

There is also a new four-footed resident downstairs. Chakra, one of Rayne's cats, died in mid-August and in September I saw this fine gentleman in a pet store and sent his picture to Rayne, who promptly came and met him and fell in love.

This is Ivan Vorcatril:
white cat

Yes, we do call him, Ivan, you idiot )

Which is better than Kina is with the new temporary downstairs resident.

Three years ago we rescued and either rehomed or tnr'd the colony of feral cats who'd been hanging out in our backyard. One of the first kittens Rayne rehomed was Sage:

grey and white cat

Sage has returned to us, but she can go home with you! )


In non-pet news, As of yesterday I am taking Concerta for ADHD.

This article was somewhat unnerving to read, because so much of it could apply to me: How I Came To Understand My Adult ADHD".

Especially this part, about how long the writer went undiagnosed:
When I asked how this was possible, my doctor-friend hit the nail on the head without looking up from her menu: “You were performing well, so no one asked you how you felt.”

I'm still figuring out what parts of my non-neurotypical brain are because of being bipolar and what parts are in fact due to ADHD. It's a weird feeling to be re-evaluating this stuff now. I'm 37. I've been diagnosed as bipolar since I was 24. I thought I was done learning new and interesting things about how my brain works.

(no subject)

Oct. 14th, 2017 07:49 pm
yam: (Bleargh!)
[personal profile] yam
Hi dreamwidth! Apparently I post once a month now.

Things are not going so hot. I asked to have my hours at work cut back by two thirds because I can't handle my already much-reduced schedule any more. I'm still working the old "long" hours this month while they find someone to cover my shifts, and it feels like it will be excruciatingly long until Remembrance Day, the deadline I gave them. Playing a fun game of "Diagnosis! Of! Exclusion!" with my doctor to see if maybe I have chronic fatigue syndrome - or one of its hard-to-pin-down diagnostically-wishy-washy cousins - on top of chronic migraine. 'Cause my head hurts, yes, all the time, but also I'm so goddamn TIRED all the time. I have no stamina and any kind of exertion puts me in bed for days recovering. So. Cutting back on work. I will need to apply for disability. I sure as heck hope I am /approved/ for disability, because I already did the sell-my-house thing once and I can't move to Abbotsford. My doctor of 19 years is supportive, I don't have any reason to think I won't be approved, just... it's a big depressing discouraging deal, is all. With a lot of paperwork and gatekeepers.

I'm glad I can still work a LITTLE - the idea of not being a pharmacist at all is very distressing - but my ideal balance involves a lot more apothecary-ing and a lot less lying in bed half-asleep clutching my head in pain. At least flu shots are in! I can spend all 4 weeks of my remaining higher-hour schedule stabbing people in the public interest.

My fiddlar-visit was fantastic/depressing/fantastic! Depressing only because I wanted to be AWAKE for more of it. But like, I got serenaded, she stuffed my fridge full of coq au vin and sammiches, and patted my head and brought me advil. I love you too, honey.

Greg is a radiant ball of sunshine in my blackout curtained off life. We're up to book 11 of the Oz books - he just ran in here and snuggled up, demanding another chapter, before racing back to making more elaborate, tricksy Mario Maker levels. (Note to Juli: he has hit his limit of uploads and refuses to swap out old ones for new ones. I'm working on him! You should come over and play them locally some time, there are some maze ones that really... make me super dizzy? I'm not selling this well, am I.)

OH OH! And my parents are moving IN TO MY BUILDING next month! I know for some people this would be terrible news, but I am ECSTATIC. If you know my parents you know that I won the parent lottery - the idea of being able to visit even when I'm totally wiped out by just hopping in the elevator is pretty amazing. Greg has been cracking himself up by saying every time we get home from school "We're not home, we're at GRAMMA AND PERRY'S HOUSE!" ("Grampa" never sticks for long. Possibly the fault of Phineas & Ferb.)

Sugar... Oh honey honey.

Oct. 10th, 2017 12:07 pm
glitch25: (Default)
[personal profile] glitch25
Amidst the rest of my personal improvement on the docket these days, one of the things I decided to include was killing off deliberate sugar. Which is to say no more candy, no more sugar in coffee or other beverages... No more sweets as such with processed sugar. I haven't been quite so unyielding as to have cut out all forms of sugar included in foods (and knowing that G does, and to be surprised by how many foods have added sugar that you might not think about...), but generally anything that is eaten for deliberate sweetness. That 86's most desserts and lots of other things. As a function of working this out, I've also nixed artificial sweeteners. The point was not to replace sugar but to see if I could break my reliance on sweetness. I have a friend that is adamant that sugar is not addictive, but pulling away from it seems to create similar withdrawals. I appreciate it probably isn't physiological, but it is most certainly psychological.

I discovered in this process, that by in large, I don't like coffee nearly as much as I once thought. I had a suspicion that once I killed sugar in it, and worked to figure out being ok with drinking it without it, that this might happen. Coffee has always been a sweet treat for me. Starbucks therefore is basically a candy store for me. Pulling the sugar has completely turned my love of coffee upside down. I still am learning to appreciate true coffee love that extends to learning how the beans taste and finding the subtle notes lent to the processing and to the regional beans. But it isn't a thing where I crave lots of it anymore. Even for the caffeine, I just don't drink very much anymore. I'm kinda lucky to make it to the bottom of my 16oz cup by lunch. Tea has also been this way, and I'm also taking time to learn more about how I feel about unadulterated tea drinking. :-)

So what is the point of dealing with all this? Mostly to free myself from what was a definite habit that was not only affecting my dental health, but the nature of always feeling like I need something nearby and being really grumpy if I let it lapse. I'm working on coupling it with better eating habits and better eating in general. And it feels good to make the choice to say no rather than feel like I'm giving in to a monkey on my back.

In the month or so that I've been doing it, my taste sense has been so affected that I really dislike the things I once loved. I loved sweet tea, and I got some as comfort when I was sick in Texas, and what I did drink of it I had to dilute with water, and I ended up tossing most of it. I also recently picked up a Ellenos yogurt. The pumpkin one. I mean.. seriously. Pumpkin greek yogurt. Awesome stuff. But.. I couldn't eat more than about a teaspoon, and at that, only in small nibbles before it was too much. My compromise on the yogurt was to bring in some plain yogurt, and dilute the sweet stuff.

It really kinda feels strange. From the time I was a kid, I had a huge sweet tooth. And I think it wouldn't take much to go back if I really wanted. Halloween is a fun time where all of my favorites are prominently placed in my face at every store I go. "Fun"... But I've been very happy with my self control, and the fact that making the change has had tangible results.

Gluten may be next on the list. Less for gluten's own sake, and more that in this day and age, avoiding gluten is one of the easiest ways to cut processed carbs out of your diet. One day, the GF world may catch up, but for the time being, it is super easy.

And on top of all that, I think it is time to get back to the gym. Between feeling my age and knowing that I have some health issues to resolve where moving makes it easier, I have a lot going for me if I can do it. I think cardio and stretching are the big plans. Then we'll see what comes next.

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