djgray: (Default)
2017-05-27 12:54 pm

(no subject)

Queen on the left, knight on the right...that's an interesting set up, Arthur. Also because it needs saying, #DammitTennyson cause I know that's where this comes from and that I am likely not going to be allowed to change it.

Because narrative reasons and worldbuilding reasons, and wow, just someone should do up a poster about the dangers of letting the Arthurian mythologies get their hooks too far into you (esp. at young ages) cause then you'll never be free. Never.

...I'm writing this dayperiod (I have no idea if it's morning or afternoon TBH) can you tell?
djgray: (Default)
2017-05-25 07:33 am

Approaching the weekend

Heading into a holiday weekend that I have a complicated relationship with, as a military brat, this "holiday" isn't so much a BBQ and pools and FUN as it is thinking about all the people who should be here and aren't and dealing with the grief that wells up from that. So I'm planning on sleeping and putting all my feels into working on my house and my spaces and tidying and finishing projects and editing.

Especially since my mental and emotional landscapes are more shaky this year than they have been previously. So yeah. Putting all that into my house and workspaces.
djgray: (Default)
2017-05-22 09:50 pm



djgray: (Default)
2017-05-21 08:08 pm

American Gods and Every Heart A Doorway

There's something to be said for this show being out now, for the subject of it to be what it is, and the meta commentary that both book and show make about the power of myth and belief and also what is at the heart of the soul of America the nation, regardless of the government.

The timing and the visuals and the creative genius of Bryan Fuller and how this is in a way, the exact thing that a lot of us needed.


There's also something to be said for Every Heart A Doorway and the ideas of recovering from the Portal Worlds and how it's given us a lot of hope in a strange wonderful and weird way.

Because belief and mythology and faith in a sense are also central there.

There is something there but I'm too tired to make sense of it right now. Anyone else want to chime in?
djgray: (Default)
2017-05-20 07:59 pm

Breaking Up/Breaking Down/Breaking Out is Hard to Do

It has been a very long last six months. To catch you all up, I have left one highly toxic and soul/spoon-sucking job. I loved the job itself when I was allowed to do it. I didn't mind putting up with some of the abuses that came with it. HR is a murky field and payroll even more so.

However, the supervisor I served under had gone from being awesome to being a manipulative gaslighting emotional abuser. It took me a long time to see it for what it was and then a longer time to decide on what my response was going to be.

Things went remarkably downhill when I started slowly setting up and then enforcing some of my boundaries. That's when I really started being able to see the situation I was in for what it actually was and not what I had thought it was. I did the smart thing and got myself out, I left with as much dignity as I could, given the fact that when I handed in my notice, I was immediately persona non grata, frozen out, and referred to in extremely derogatory terms. There were lots of rumors flying about and I was not allowed to serve out my full notice.

Which in the end, worked out for the better. I was able to start the new job early and it's been to my benefit there. However, it's been an uphill battle with going from a very bad workplace to a workplace that is actually a really awesome and decent place to work. They actively care about their employees' health and sanity and not just in a half-assed attempt to squeeze more work and effort out of you. They treat you like an actual person. It's unlike anything I was used to before.

It's also been one heck of an adjustment as I recalibrate and unlearn all the survival habits that I had developed out of self-defense. As I categorize all the different triggers and forumlate different healthier ways of handling them. It has taught me a lot.

I'm not totally over what happened. It's going to take more time, I put in five years of being the best employee I could be and at the end, I was made to feel like I was the lowest of pond scum for leaving. I have some currently-being-resolved grief for some of the time I spent and the relationships that I lost when I left.

In the midst of all of that, my parents and youngest sibling were still within the first year of being back and readjusting to everything here, including the loss of a treasured family pet that returned back with them. Dealing with all the different financial and emotional stresses and their own grieving processes because the way they came back was not ideal and it was something that had been poorly handled by the agency from the start. From being on the outside of that process, I was still working through the grieving process on my end (kind of still in anger mode there, but I'm working on it) and helping them through the readjustment phases.

My glorious roommate was also still recovering from major surgery and we were still coping with the changes that the major emergency surgery had forced us to make. I hit 30 and wow did 30 punch back. I had thought those jokes were just silly things people said and I was so terribly wrong about that. All of my goalposts got moved and a lot of what hadn't been normal became normal and there's been a lot shifting with my own myriad grab-bag of medical maladies. Having had fibro for eighteen years now, there's been some shifting of what passes for my baselines and some accomodations that have had to be made because of that. Which in and of itself is fairly frustrating, even more so when it feeds into some of the mental illness components that come hand in hand with the whole chronic pain thing.

As a historian, the leadup to, the election, and everything afterwards has been horrifically traumatizing. I have been in a lot of different places and seen a lot of different styles of government and I never thought I would ever see the sorts of things that I have seen in the last two years happening here. I thought we would be above that and I was wrong.

There have been glorious high points in the last six months, but there have also been some pretty serious lows and some middles that just needed to be slogged through.

All of it however requires time and spoons. Which is why a lot of my extracurricular stuff has suffered a lot. I simply haven't been able to give myself to a lot of what I had enjoyed before because there's nothing there to give, even if I wanted to.

I started this, thinking about grief and all the different ways that it has impacted me lately. How in some places, I'm further ahead in the grieving process, some places I'm not making a lot or even any progress. It's good to at least take stock of those, so I know where and how I need to divert energy.

Because the hits just never stop coming, we've had recent news involving my roommate's family that isn't as bad as it could have been, but it's still extremely terrible and it's really made me stop and think about a lot of things lately.

How despite the dumpster trash fire that is the current state of the govt and all the rest of the crap that has happened and that we've had to muscle our way through...I still count myself fortunate for my house and my new job and my community, both in physical space and in the internets. I love all of you and wish the best for you and will cheerfully defend and fight for any and all of you. Offer shelter and food when and where I can, funds when I can, and always and forever an open inbox and a listening ear.

If you need me, I am here for you.

This entry was originally posted at Please comment there using OpenID.
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2017-05-18 02:44 pm


I don't really have words for last night.

Except that it was the best decision ever and I regret NOTHING. More details and pictures to follow later when I'm at a computer that is actually mine.

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2017-05-15 01:15 pm

(no subject)

So last night was a very long exercise in frustration since I wound up being too tired to sleep. Yes, that sounds ridiculous, but it's what happened. Reading didn't help, deep breathing and stretching didn't help, none of the usual tricks helped.

So I'm functioning on ~6.5 hours of sleep and it's a super busy day. Yeah. And I still have to go grocery shopping after work today because there is no time I can do it otherwise this week and I need to eat.

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djgray: (Default)
2017-05-12 07:53 am

6 months

Since I started the new job. 6 months today.


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2017-05-05 07:28 pm

The Fifth Strikes Back

So yesterday was a Day and then today, well right now my current mood can only really be described as Drunk Inigo Montoya yelling at clouds and Waiting for Vizzini. Given that I am alcohol sober but not caffeine sober - this is slightly hilarious to my sluggish brain.

Today? is work and then a playoff game and I cannot even begin to describe to you how much my feelings are FEELINGS about this game because I just don't want to jinx anything and I still have a hard time intellectually grasping that we're even here where we are right now.

Especially since it is this week and ya'll, I hate this week. I have a long standing hate fest for the first week in May for an increasing list of reasons. So this is one of those things that you really only understand if you've lived in this part of the south for a while. Everyone hates the week before the Kentucky Derby. Everyone. The reason why is because the week leading up to Derby is the week that we are guaranteed to have the most ridiculous extreme weather possible. Finger of God tornadoes happen on this week, floods happen on this week, I would not at all be surprised if we were to have an earthquake or a volcano on this week.

So yeah.

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djgray: (Default)
2017-05-04 07:38 pm


So a majority of my govt today voted to declare me a pre-existing condition on pretty much the basis that I have XX chromosomes and then also give health insurance providers the ability to deny me coverage based on that fact (not to mention my grab bag of current and past medical conditions).

And if that wasn't bad enough, they then held a party in the Rose Garden complete with cartons of beer.

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djgray: (Default)
2017-04-29 11:02 pm

Readathon: What time even is it?

I'm on book 11 (I think?) and I'm sobbing because Mira Grant. Also Australia.

At some point I might think about a nap or something.

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2017-04-29 12:50 pm

Readathon Updates: Hour...I have no idea

Books 3-9 are down.

History's Naughty Bits and then Grayson volumes 2-5 and Nightwing Nu 52 vol 4-5 - and hrm I am contemplating a break for some more food and either a short nap or some more coffee.

Eventually I need to venture out for some more essentials, food wise. I have food here, but not really snacky type foods.

Coming up I have some more hefty books. The Habitation of the Blessed, Deathless, Gaiman's Norse Mythology, and then a few collections of short stories and novellas.

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djgray: (Default)
2017-04-29 09:26 am

Readathon Updates:

I have finished books 1 and 2!

Granted they were in my pile of half-reads but I'm still happy I finished them. One of them was the last in a series and the other was the second in a trilogy.

The Born Queen by Greg Keyes and Shadow Dawn by Chris Claremont were the two. And there's part of me that's weirdly ashamed at how long it took me to pick them back up and finish them, but it's also a marker of just how incredibly fucked up I have been for since college.

Probably before/during college really, if I am being completely honest. I used to hide so much in books because I didn't feel I was allowed to really be the person I wanted to be. And to be honest, I sort of wasn't. Growing up the way I did, with all the societal and cultural crap that I had to pay attention to because if I didn't, Bad Things Happened. So I perfected the art of seeming perfect outside the house and being a quiet strange semi-feral hot mess inside of it.

It got better and also worse once I discovered the Internet and found honest and true friends and started to develop an actual personality other than just the things I knew to parrot back for reasons. I had thought that the way I was, the way life was was just the way it had to be until I was shown differently.

And this is all really deep and I want to come back and poke more at this because I have a feeling that my therapist will be ecstatic that I can put some of this into actual phrases and not just futile hand motions. But at the same point, I have a pile of books to get back to and so I'm putting a pin in this for the moment and diving back into my pile of reads.

Next is trade paperbacks of Dick Grayson's UTTER ridiculousness, so I am looking forward to that.

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djgray: (Default)
2017-04-29 08:17 am

Opening Survey: Readathon

1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today?

A small Hobbit House set into a Hill, with a Red Door somewhere in the country outside of Nashville, Tennessee.

2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to?

This is a trick question. All of them.

3) Which snack are you most looking forward to?

Does Coffee count? Because it's coffee.

4) Tell us a little something about yourself!1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today?
2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to?
3) Which snack are you most looking forward to?
4) Tell us a little something about yourself!

I'm a thirty year old reader and writer and given some of the stresses lately in life, I could hardly wait for my planned vacation to Readathon world today. I can't actually just skip out on my real life for the vacation I want to do just yet, so this will tide me over and shore me up. Readthon = Self-Care Marathon for me. Also I somehow convinced my housemate to do this with me so I am super excited about that.

5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? If this is your first read-a-thon, what are you most looking forward to?

Today I have my roomie reading with me so that's already amazing! One thing I am doing differently is that I have audiobooks for when I need to move around after sitting so much with some of my books. I'm incorporating as much motion as I can this time so that I don't get drowsy on the couch.

This entry was originally posted at Please comment there using OpenID.
djgray: (Default)
2017-04-26 01:58 pm

(no subject)

So lately I have been feeling a lot like I am going to just crack and break and that I need to just get away and go just anywhere else just to get away from all the things that are stressing me out and all the things that I am responsible for and all of the weights of that responsibility and duty and honor and family tradition and everything.

There's been a lot of moving parts in the last couple of months, especially with regards to myself and my health. If this were me in college, then I would have already run away to the eternally welcoming bosoms of two of my dearest friends who are sincerely some of the best and brightest of this world.

Sadly as I am in Tennessee and they are not, I don't have that as an option really. Running down to Atlanta is also not an option for reasons of saving money and at this point I'm not actually certain that even if I got there, I'd be able to get home after. With my luck, the last remaining highways would go up and I'd be trapped behind the concrete and asphalt moat that surrounds the fair city of Atlanta.

So I am going on a trip.

Saturday morning, I am getting up and eating and then going to go off on my trip. It's a reading trip through a pile of to-reads and half-reads. I'm really just spending the entire day not worrying about my word count, my day jobbe life, my upcoming events, or the family drama llama carousel ride.

I'm going to dive into the pile of books and go adventuring through their pages. Falling in love with the strangest of characters and getting pulled into all sorts of strange and wonderful and weird places. So I have ebooks and dead tree books and then also audiobooks for when I just have to move around and/or cook/bake a thing or two.

My ever charming and always nicer than me roommate is joining me on this quest - she's already assembled her pile. I'm still working on mine. If you'd like to know more or even join us on this mighty and magical and mysterious quest...follow this link down the rabbit hole

I can hardly wait for this weekend, ya'll.

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djgray: (Default)
2017-01-13 01:12 am

lifesentences: goingtopshelf: punchbuggydragon: breelandwalker...






*cracks neck* my time has come

Okay, first? Pay off all your debts. Take out a small loan and pay it off right away.

Buy several hundred vacant houses. Schedule repairs for said houses with reputable contractors and make sizable down payments in advance. Get everything in writing and hang onto those deeds.

Buy a large open parcel of land that is being auctioned for development. And when I say large, I mean LARGE.

Sink millions into paying off people’s Kickstarters / college loans / medical bills / mortgages, and give generously charity organizations. That alone will carry off a lot of money.

Once you’ve got things down to a reasonable level, say $1m, buy yourself a house, furnishings, appliances, and a dependable car. Pay everything off so that you own it free and clear. Purchase about $200k worth of something easy to liquidate (i.e. gold, gems, bonds, stocks). Put the rest onto prepaid credit cards and wait for Monday to roll around.


You now have commendable credit and a shining public reputation.

Fix up and flip those houses, sell them for fair market value or below to families who need them, or create non-profit homeless shelters. (After all, it’s not like you need to “make” money, this is all running on the proceeds from the property sales.)

Sell the parcel of land to developers, or donate it to public works as a park or open space. Have them name it after you.

Retire to your fully furnished home. Liquidate your extra assets, or leave them to appreciate in value for a later date. Make Christmas epic with those gift cards. Keep the extra money in the bank and keep your day job.

And don’t worry about taxes when return time rolls around, because you’ll be able to write off several millions’ worth of charitable donations.

Basically this

This is someone who paid attention in finance class. 

I always reblog this just in case this happens. LOL. 

from Tumblr
djgray: (Default)
2017-01-12 09:04 pm

the-wanlorn: lb-lee: ghostmelody: ooksaidthelibrarian: nestofstraightlines: awaywardmind: new...







new genre concept: soft apocalypse

the world as we know it has ended and mother nature starts taking back what’s hers. there are no zombies or cannibals or murderous bandits. the most valued members of the community are those who know how to garden and farm, sew and weave, treat wounds, work wood or build with bricks, cook from scratch. 

people bond together to begin rebuilding instead of killing each other. everyone teaches each other whatever they do know and works together to figure out the stuff none of them know. books become incredibly valued resources because they’re often the only way to learn critical information. if someone is elderly, disabled, or otherwise unable to work at the same level as most of the community, they’re taken care of by the others, not told any sort of “survival of the fittest” bs.

as the generations ware on, communities begin expanding into small cities. some of the settlements even find ways to repurpose solar or wind power on a small scale and have electricity in some of their buildings. storytellers wander the countryside telling tales of the old world in return for some hot stew or a place to rest for the night, and the mythos of the new world start to incorporate elements of the past. the only thing that remains constant is that humans survive, and they do it by working together.

Try Earth Abides by George R. Stewart

Oh man, definitely try Earth Abides. I loved that book so much and, like Anhilation by Jeff Vandermeer, I thought that if the apocalypse had to happen, this would be a somehow very comforting way.

i would also recommend Station Eleven, the author’s name escapes me but it has a similar approach and bonus star trek references. I loved that book.

I also recommend Yokohama Kaidashi Kikō!  Also the song No Hurry by Vixy and Tony!  Also I sometimes try to hit these notes in my Reverend Alpert the Traveling Exorcist serial, but humanity still has its nasty impulses so I’m not sure it’d quite rank.

If you’re looking for an entire genre of mostly that, try solarpunk.

from Tumblr
djgray: (Default)
2017-01-12 05:03 pm


from Tumblr
djgray: (Default)
2017-01-12 01:02 pm


from Tumblr