Thanks to follower .breaking into blossom., I’ve been nominated for something called a liebster award: a sort of blog-based chain letter which encourages small bloggers to give a shout-out to/for other small bloggers.
a) it was sweet of blossom to think of me (thank you!),
b) I just got back from vacation and I’m bored,
c) I like that the Liebster Award shares the same first letter as Lesbian.
So here goes.
It seems there are multiple versions of this “award” going around, but the one blossom is following instructs me to:
a) nominate eleven blogs with under 200 followers (I honestly don’t know how you’d determine that, so I’m just gonna take a stab at it by choosing from the “smallish personal blog” category in my Feedly list)
b) notify said bloggers they’ve been nominated (hey bloggers! thanks for existing!)
c) provide answers to the eleven questions blossom posed in her own Liebster post, and
d) ask eleven questions of my own nominees, to answer if they so choose, along with posting their own eleven nominees (excluding the blogger who nominated you).
My Nominees in Alphabetical Order are…. (drumroll) …
- The Dirty Normal
- Eat the Damn Cake
- Fannie’s Room
- First the Egg
- I’m Unschooled. Yes, I Can Write
- The Lesbrary
- New Porn By Women
- Radical Doula
- The Thang Blog
- Undercover in the Suburbs
- Walk the Ridgepole
My responses to blossom’s questions…
- What comforts you most when you’re sad? Touch, particularly from my wife (doesn’t have to be sexual). And reading familiar books.
- What would you do on a dream day where money and travel time were no object? Enjoy leisurely meals in the good company of friends and family (who are scattered across the continent), go walking in Cumbria in ideal weather, read intellectually engaging things in books, and enjoy unhurried sexytimes with my wife.
- Favorite drink (with or without alcohol)? Summer: Elderflower gin & tonic, Winter: Goat’s milk hot cocoa made with belgian chocolate.
- What character trait (of yours) do you most struggle to accept about yourself? The fact that physical activity and exercise are not second nature to me.
- How much water do you drink in a day? Typically not as much as I should.
- If you’re a parent, what has surprised you the most about the gig? If you’re not, what do you like best about not having kids (right now or at all)? I feel uncomfortable framing non-parenting in terms of what’s “best” about that aspect of our family life. In part, we’re non-parents because we can’t picture having enough hours in the day (around work) or emotional resources to parent adequately. So I guess I’d say, “it’s good having enough sleep and down-time that we can function”? But I’d rather say that what’s surprised me about non-parenting is that I’m okay with it. Growing up, I assumed I would be a mother. Life hasn’t turned out that way, and it’s surprising me that I’m as comfortable with that as I am.
- What (if anything) makes you feel insecure about either being a parent or not being a parent? Insecurity may not be the right term…but I worry about how to maintain cross-generational connections in the absence of parenting, as that is the clearest model I know.
threefour television shows of all time? Firefly. Mr. Rogers. Torchwood. The West Wing.
- Specialty dish (or baked indulgence)? Something you’ve made time and again. Moosewood brownies.
- Favorite thing about the person you’ve grown into? That I can always find something to be interested in and ask questions about.
- One simple, happy memory. Stepping off the plane in Redmond, Oregon, en route to visiting my grandparents and smelling the scent of juniper and lava rock dust.
- First library?
- A favorite childhood book or movie you’re now a bit cringe-y about having adored?
- Earliest memory of the internet?
- Food you disliked in childhood but appreciate now (and why)?
- Books currently on your nightstand/active reading pile?
- A might-have-been from your twenties (job not taken, relationship not pursued, trip aborted) that you find yourself wondering about?
- Favored toothpaste, toothbrush?
- Have you ever burned/shredded/junked a piece of personal history you now regret destroying (if so, what and why)?
- Have you ever burned/shredded/junked a piece of personal history you have no regrets about (if so, what and why)?
- A strong childhood memory of world events?
- A project you hope to finish some day (but has currently fallen by the wayside)?
Hanna’s in California this weekend, attending a bridal shower and enjoying a few days with our friends Diana and Collin. I’m in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, kitten-sitting for a friend who inadvertently adopted a wee kitten she found in the engine well of her car about six weeks ago (!).
The kitten’s name is Houdini because he is good at hiding and at getting out of enclosed spaces. He was deeply uncertain of me for the first twenty-four hours, but he is now willing to share the same couch and even sat on my lap for a few minutes, purring madly.
He’s the loudest, most automatic purr-er I have ever seen. If you so much as look at him, he starts up like a little motor launch.
Hanna will be joining me on Tuesday, when she returns from the west coast, and we’re going to enjoy a few days’ midsummer getaway before heading back to Boston (although I’ll also be experiencing the commuter life when I go into work Monday, Tuesday and Friday — whee!
This morning I walked the length of Blackstone Boulevard from Pawtucket into Providence. Lots of really well-maintained early 20th-century homes en route for my architectural-history gene to geek out about.
In Providence, I made my way to the local independent grocers for a few supplies (you always forget something!). Though less proliferate than in Boston, there are really great food options here, including wildflour cafe where I got my morning’s delicious coffee and a rosemary-onion savory scone, and three sisters where I went last night for kulfi ice cream (YUM).
I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t gone on Craigslist last night to check out the rental market in Pawtucket. Though Hanna and I have enough friends who do the to-Boston-from-Elsewhere commute to know we won’t be moving Elsewhere anytime soon.
Back to reading the draft of my friend Molly’s parenting-while-feminist book project while the cat purrs at me from a suspicious distance!
Today, after making a trek to Harvard’s library privileges office in the middle of the first heat wave of the summer to apply for spousal library privileges (what could be nerdier than that?) I finally made the time to watch Wil Wheaton’s message to a baby nerd, which Hanna sent to me several weeks ago via the Mary Sue.
I thought it was appropriate to share as my 1100th post here at the feminist librarian.
Stay cool, everyone, and spend some time this weekend loving your favorite things as hard as you can.
|Me on a knit-bombed bench, Arnold Arboretum (photo by Joseph)|
This weekend, my friend Joseph is in town from Michigan, where he works at Arrowhead Alpines and recently published a book on plant breeding at home (aka plantsex!). Obviously, we spent at least some of the weekend exploring plant-y things in the Boston area, including a glorious visit to Arnold Arboretum.
I hadn’t been to the Arb since maybe 2008? I’m absolutely not going to leave it so long before I go back.
It was a perfect half-cloudy day to wander around experimenting with nature photography.
Next time, though, I’m gonna bring a book and a thermos of tea and settle in for a long afternoon of reading out-doors. Maybe in this tree …
Joseph was super-excited to see this dove tree, planted in 1904; he says it’s the oldest dove tree in the United States (the earliest tree we saw was a bonsai started in the late 1700s!)
The azaleas were blooming everywhere in all shades from white to deep fuschia. These were a salmon red, though the camera made them come out pink.
As were the lilacs…
I’m looking forward to chilling by this lake sometime soon with my wife and a picnic from the Harvest Co-op.
While Hanna was dozing in the bedroom this afternoon, and I was listening to Jeff Chu’s interview on the Diane Rehm Show through their online streaming (have I mentioned how much public radio totally rocks and that we’re proud supporters?), I decided to paint my fingernails in rainbow in anticipation of this coming week’s oral arguments before the Supreme Court on the legality of bans on same-sex marriage.
Like it’s any secret, but I think my nails probably give my position on the matter away.
What with the wedding ring and all.
The cats were unimpressed with my politics and beauty regime, particularly since there was nothing edible in it for them.
They preferred to spend the afternoon sunbathing in our living room.
(Sometimes I suspect Teazle is a slinkie in disguise.)
(And also that one day she will figure out how to reach the hanging plants…)
Hope you all are having a restful weekend — more coming later in the week on queer porn, queer families, sex and relationships, SCOTUS, DOMA, and all the rest!
|Idris (the TARDIS) in “The Doctor’s Wife”|
A few months ago, I discovered there is such a thing in the world as an International Day of Femslash.
So naturally I had to participate, and my piece went live today over at Archive of Our Own:
Title: These Are The Days We Live Now
Fandom: Doctor Who
Pairing: Donna Noble/Idris (the TARDIS)
Rating: R / Explicit (AO3)
Length: 5,487 words
Summary: Idris stretches herself thin, across time, across space, threads of consciousness. Searching. A Donna Noble fix-it fic inspired by “The Doctor’s Wife.”
Tags: Loss, Memory Loss, Human/Non-Human Relationship, Pining, Dreams, Hurt/Comfort, Fix-It Fic, Homecoming
As part of the IDF challenge, I was paired with crumpledquill who created a fantastic video trailer for my story (squee!) which you will be able to view on her YouTube channel and as part of the IDF collections at Passion and Shatterstorm. I’ll embed it here when I can!
It’s been awhile since we did one of the four years ago today flashback posts. So here’s a fun one I pulled from the Gmail archive. My friend Joseph and his brother had generated lists of the top ten novels in their “personal canon” and Joseph emailed to ask what mine would be. After some thought, this is what I came up with. Looking it over today, I can’t say there are any huge revisions to this list.
Date: Tue, Dec 11, 2007 at 10:22 PM
Subject: Re: Personal canon of books
My canon is decidedly more “lowbrow” and than yours, but I am squelching my impulse to apologise for it on Nick Hornby’s firm orders (even though he loves Dickens’ and writes tedious novels about men who refuse to grow up, so I am not sure how much I trust him . . .)
I have artificially controlled against all non-fiction and children’s literature (well, below the teen level). Not sure if that’s quite what you had in mind, but there we are. I discover my criteria are a) enduring “good read”–something I will go back to over and over again, as well as b) things that have had deep impact on how I answer the question, “how to live?” . . . these categories don’t always overlap. There are books that have had great impact on how I think about the world, but which I’ve only read once . . . and books that I read habitually, but that I don’t really think of as life-shaping in any explicit way. Maybe they’re just sneaker at it? And of course these change over time . . . I was just thinking today how His Dark Materials has really grown on me over the years. And even though I have issues with some of his didacticism, his theological imagery really speaks to me. And, I mean, who could resist the idea of a reversal of the whole Genesis/Fall/Eve story? (Um . . . wait . . . that’s right . . . a LOT of people 😉 ).
That long introduction completed, here are my nominations. The top ten in a strictly alphabetical order. I figure once you make top-ten I’m not going to be judgmental. ALTHOUGH I do sometimes find myself paralyzed by the question of which book I would become if I were a character in Fahrenheit 451 . . . possibly a clear indication of how troubled I actually am :).
1. E.M. Forester. A Room With a View.
2. Shirley Hazzard. The Great Fire.
3. Haven Kimmel. The Solace of Leaving Early.
4. Robin Lippincott. Our Arcadia.
5. Michelle Magorian. Not a Swan.
6. Robin McKinley. The Blue Sword, et al.
7. Audrey Niffinegger. The Time-Traveler’s Wife.
8. Dorothy Sayers. Gaudy Night.
9. Martin Cruz Smith. Rose.
10. Tom Stoppard. Arcadia.
Some possible future candidates/honorable mentions:
Isabel Allende. Daughter of Fortune & Portrait in Sepia.
Jane Austen. Persuasion.
A.S. Byatt. Possession.
Sheryl Jordan. The Raging Quiet.
Laurie R. King. The Beekeeper’s Apprentice, et al.
Barbara Kingsolver. Bean Trees.
David Levithan. The Realm of Possibility.
Gregory Maguire. Wicked, Son of a Witch
Philip Pullman. His Dark Materials.
Margaret Whelan Turner. The Thief, Queen of Attolia, King of Attolia.
So they have the widgets up this week, but I’m not sure I’m all that thrilled with them. The color scheme is unimpressive. Still. Here ya go. As of this morning I have 13,880 words written toward the official goal of 50,000 and my personal goal of 25,000.
I like the screenshot a bit better. Perhaps I’m just vain?
This past weekend, I wrote a 3,300 word “plot? what plot?” bit of fan fiction at the request of a friend of mine, which accounts for a fairly large chunk of the total gain made. I’ll probably edit it tomorrow evening and post it to AO3 if anyone is feeling deprived of Sybil/Gwen smut and wants something to look forward to for mid-week. It’s about as plot-what-plot as I think I’ll ever be capable of writing. Let’s just say it involved doing some Google searching for the date upon which the zeppelin raids began on London (to ensure that leisurely morning sexytimes wasn’t historically inaccurate) and to verify the name an inception date for Sylvia Pankhurst’s East London Federation of Suffragists (yes, the acronym really was ELFS).
Happy writing everyone!
I’ve been working on two new installments of my How She Loved You series (posted at AO3), which is Sybil Crawley/Gwen fan fiction series building loosely on the events from season one of Downton Abbey and, you know, inventing liberally thereafter. I’m currently about 5K and three sections into a 5+1 fic (“Five times Sybil and Gwen parted before dawn and the first time they didn’t have to”), a piece about Sybil painting Gwen’s portrait, and a longish plottish piece filling in Gwen’s back story (complete with Tragic First Love).
Hanna, as usual, has demanded there be orgasms at regular intervals for both main characters, so for those of you yearning after femslash rest assured that this is Porn With Plot and/or Plot With Porn on an installment-by-installment basis.
Any of you participating in National Novel Writing Month? How’d the first week go for y’all this year?