rockinhamburger: (WeeandSad!Spock)
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So, I know I'm a day late on this one, but I do want to answer the question.

I was in class, 8th Grade English, when we got the call over the intercom system that the entire school was to come down to the gymnasium (we didn't have an auditorium) for an assembly. And so my school of roughly five hundred students filed into the gym, chatting animatedly, completely unaware of what was going on.

The principal of our school took his place at the very front of the gymnasium, and when most of the school had quieted down, he began to speak, in a voice that barely carried over the crowd and hushed whispers that were still going on. Someone at the back of the gym yelled, "Can you speak up?"

The principal said, in a somber voice, "No, I can't."

THAT got people's attention. We all became silent as he told us that two planes had crashed into the World Trade Center, and one into the Pentagon, and that if any of us needed to talk to a counsellor, we should feel free to do so.

I have to admit I had no idea what any of this meant. I was a Canadian student at a school in Quebec, coupled with limited knowledge of politics and the financial sector. 'World Trade Center' did not compute in my brain; perhaps if someone has said 'The Twin Towers', I would have understood some of the magnitude of the situation. If someone had explained right away that this was a terrorist attack, I think I'd have understood how serious the situation really was. When we returned to class, my English teacher explained nothing -- I was so frustrated. I went to meet some of my friends at their lockers, and suggested we needed to know what the hell was going on. So we went to speak to the counsellor in order to have our questions answered. My friends and I spent the next hour or two talking to the counsellor and asking our questions.

I walked home after school, sat down in front of the television all by myself, and started to watch the news. I could not tear my eyes away from the footage that was playing on a near-loop for the entire night, and fairly regularly in the days and weeks to come. When my parents came home and joined me, I asked them even more questions, and they answered them as best they could, and when they finally decided after several hours that they should change the channel, I went to my room, turned on my tv and watched the news coverage late into the night. I just wanted to understand how this could happen.

In the nine years that have passed since that day -- and I can't believe it's been nine years -- I've heard so many stories, so many theories, so much controversy over the response to the attack, and sometimes the latter detracts from what this day really means to people all over the world, but most especially to the people of America. For a Canadian teenager in Quebec it meant confusion and lack of knowledge, and my attempts to alleviate them. For many others, it meant so much more and so much worse; husbands, wives, mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, brothers, sisters, aunts and uncles, nephews, neices, colleagues, and good friends -- taken. Gone forever because evil exists in this world in terrifying, unacceptable quantities.

The first time this day became real to me as more than a day in history; the first day I realized what this day really meant for the people of America, the people of New York, was during the viewing the video at this link:

This is what Jon Stewart had to say when The Daily Show came back from the mutual hiatus the late night shows took in the weeks immediately following September 11th. I must have been about sixteen when I saw this video on YouTube, and it made me cry. Up until that point, I understood 9/11 in abstract terms, and this was the exact moment I realized just how deep the pain goes.

Dear friends, I do not know what September 11th means to you, but I would like to. I know this is a day late, but if you still want to share, I do want to be there. Where were you, what did you feel, what does it mean for you? I care.

And most importantly, I care so much about all of you.

rockinhamburger: (Gaga:)
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Oh yes. It's like a compulsion; I believe very strongly in responsible consumer choice. The first company I boycotted was Nike, when I was eleven, because I found out about sweatshops in China and child labour while I was researching the issue for a school project. Since then, I have not bought a single Nike product.

There are a few others, the main ones being American Apparel, because of the rampant objectification of women within their advertising, and Coca Cola, because of its environmental and political impact on the entire world - it's an enormous, out-of-control corporation that is responsible for depleting water sources in many third world countries, exploiting its employees, especially at the bottom most rung of the ladder (because they fucking can) and paying them a dollar a day while paying their head CEOs thousands of dollars an HOUR. They have paramilitaries that are put in place to kill citizens in order to stop them from exercising their freedom to speak negatively about how the company's presence impacts their home countries and native cities. It's a fucked up company. I would really encourage you to find out more about it.

I know this amount of passion can be exhausting to people who don't feel as strongly about these issues, but it's just a part of my nature. I'm very passionate about the issues I'm convicted in, and I try live my life in a way that reflects that. And the truth is, I feel guilty giving a company money if I know the deplorable ways they treat human beings, whether directly or indirectly.
rockinhamburger: (Cheeeeeks!)
Oh fuck, I've been so bad about posting lately. Although, tbh, I'm not sure that's a problem considering I don't really have anything interesting to say most of the time! But yeah, I do want to type up where my brain's these days. SO!

+I am so FUCKING stoked for April 12th to arrive. That's when the Adam Little Black Dress fics will start being posted, and some (read: most) of my favourite AI authors are participating! I cannot wait to read the awesome fic that is sure to come out of this.

+I am also FUCKING stoked about Adam being on American Idol next week, not just to perform but to mentor the current AI folks. I haven't been watching this season - mostly because I pretty never watch the show in general - but I have heard that it's been kinda less-than-stellar. There's been, from what I can tell, some controversy over this decision because Adam is just emerging as a performer and there have been other people from Idol (people who actually won it) who could provide some great advice as well. Here's how I see it, though:

1) It'll boost the ratings. Adam'll totally bring back anyone who's been bored this season and stopped watching, and he has new fans who will probably tune in solely to see him do his thing. 2) It'll help boost his album sales and promote his summer tour. 3) Whether you loved him or hated him, Adam was amazingly versatile last season, and his guidance with the current group could actually be really vital. He really knew how to choose the right song, own it, and make that stage his bitch. He just went through the process, so it's still fresh in his mind, and he has the added bonus of becoming really big really fast which will give the contestants an idea of what they should expect if they make it to the end. PLUS: ADAM FUCKING LAMBERT IS GONNA BE ON AMERICAN IDOL AGAIN. FUCK YEAH!!!

I'm also excited to see what he's gonna do with Whataya Want From Me. I have a feeling he's gonna completely change it up, maybe rearrange the melody just to show how it can be done. We'll see!!!

+I'm 6000 words into my Glambert & Kradam bigbang fic. It's slow-going right now, due to my raging perfectionism which causes me to write a scene, hate it, and promptly delete it, leaving me with no idea how to proceed. I do know where I'm going with it generally, but getting there is the hard part of course.

I will also be finishing Soaked over at the kinkmeme very soon, hopefully by the end of the weekend. I know what I need to write; I just need to sit down and fucking write it.

+I've really gotten into The United States of Tara. Anyone on my flist watching? So, so good! Diablo Cody is a genius.

What's new in your world, bbs?

+OH YEAH, I got into the program and school of my choice for the fall. Now I gotta pay my tuition by the 13th, which is the hard part!
rockinhamburger: (Kris)
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Not anymore, although I had really bad insomnia when I was in high school. I used to lie awake for hours at night, stressing out over just about anything and everything. At the time, my special tricks/remedies mainly consisted of reading until I couldn't keep my eyes open any longer or listening to music.

I have thankfully gotten loads better over the last five years, and that can mostly be attributed to the fact that I no longer stress about everything little thing that comes my way. When I moved out and into the city for the first time four years ago, I had to adjust to a new way of living. I couldn't walk home from the metro past midnight every single night and continue feeling threatened and nervous when nothing ever happened. Whereas I used to freak out whenever a stranger approached me on the street or metro, I have learned to stand my ground and speak up (sometimes quite firmly) when someone pisses me off. The dissipation of such a huge area of stress for me - my own vulnerability as a small, seemingly defenseless woman - has made it so that I no longer worry constantly about what could happen to me and/or my loved ones. And I try to remain positive so that these areas of my life that do concern me feel not-scary and manageable.

That has been the most effective and satisfying remedy for my insomnia: learning to deal with life. And I can say with pride and conviction that I have conquered the fear that used to consume me on a daily basis. Empowering myself and believing that I, first and foremost, have the physical, mental, and emotional strength to protect my body and my interests, has made me more relaxed, much less of a basket-case, and more fun to be around.

I can't speak for anyone else struggling with insomnia, but I would suggest that you look deep within yourself to try and discover why you can't sleep. If it isn't due to a diagnosed (or otherwise) medical condition, it can sometimes be caused by emotional stress. I encourage you to have the courage to seek that turmoil out and work on it every single day.

It has honestly made all the difference for me.

rockinhamburger: (Kris)
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Well, there are the three categories of snacks for me: salty, sweet, and healthy.

Salty: Chips -- all flavours. Seriously, EVERY flavour. I love chips. Then there's popcorn and pretzels and cheesies, but not the puffy cylindrical ones; the crunchy, misshapen ones.

Sweet: Ice-cream, chocolate, and cookies. So fucking good.

Healthy: Grilled cheese, veggies and dip, pita and hummus or tzatziki (oh, you don't know that word, spellchecker?? Fuck off, it's totally a word!), or fruit salad.

No, I don't have different snacks for different occasions. I snack all the time. My favourite category of snack is salty, definitely. The amount of time I spend craving salty snacks should probably be criminal.

I, um. I really love food. Which is why I'm gonna go eat now. I'm hungry.
rockinhamburger: (Default)
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It really depends. I'm big on choosing your own battles. It's perfectly acceptable and, in my opinion, morally obligatory to speak up when someone's making racist, sexist and/or homophobic remarks. But I try to use my judgment. If I know my calling an individual out will just start a debate over homosexuality or prejudice in general, I'm probably not going to say anything unless it's something I can't possibly let slide.

But when friends and relatives say shit like that? Unacceptable. When I was as young as thirteen, a friend of mine started using that tired "that's so gay" line in civilized conversation. Figuring she didn't really mean it as an insult, I let it slide the first few times. But eventually I had to ask her not to use that insult around me (or anyone, really) because it speaks ill of gay people. I don't remember the conversation that well, but it must have worked on some level because she stopped using it and there hasn't been a problem since.

Sometimes friends of mine will say something homophobic, like claiming that homosexuality is wrong and sinful, but they'll disguise it by clinging to their Christian faith as an excuse or explanation. I believe (actually, I know) that this is not only untrue, but incredibly homophobic. The trouble is that I have trouble calling those friends out because of how they disguise it, and because I know it will just start a fight and cause feelings to be hurt.

I am, over time, becoming better able to confront this sort of thought. And I definitely don't let sexist or racist remarks slide, so it seems only right and fair that I treat homophobic remarks with the same disdain and attempt to educate the people that use them.
rockinhamburger: (Default)
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Deathly Hallows. Though, truly, every single one was a most satisfying read at the time. I enjoyed these books more than I could ever fully say. Suffice it to say they are wonderful books that I find extremely satisfying in many ways.

Happy Birthday, J.K. And Harry, for that matter!
rockinhamburger: (Default)
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The time will come
when, with elation,
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror,
and each will smile at the other’s welcome,

and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you

all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,

the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.

~ Derek Walcott ~

Oopsidaisy! Did you say line?? I thought you said poem...!
rockinhamburger: (Stephen and Jon <3)
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If the assassination of JFK was a conspiracy.

But just so you know, I probably won't be jailed forever; I'll probably be killed. Otherwise I could share my information. I could write a book. And they wouldn't want that.

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April 2012


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