And Yet

25/3/16 00:27
taste_is_sweet: (My OTP has issues)
So, Empire Online posted this thing about how Captain America: Civil War is a love story but Steve Rogers and Bucky Barnes are not boyfriends (Which I found out via this Tumblr post originally by YouNeedToStrut). For those of you who aren't into links, the Empire post by Phil De Semlyen talks about how director Joe Russo refers to Civil War as a brotherly love story, saying:

"These are two guys who grew up together, and so they have that same emotional connection to each other as brothers would, and even more so because Bucky was all Steve had growing up."

Now, I made my own post about that whole 'Brotherly' thing back in February, generally going on the assumption that the Russos were madly trying to avoid a mass homosexual freakout. And then Sebastian Stan said this:

"I think it’s easy and generalising [sic] it to say that they’re lovers, when you’re forgetting that one has a lot of guilt because he swore to be the protector of the other, the father figure or older brother so to speak, and then left him behind." Adds the actor: "I have no qualms with it but I think people like to see it much more as a love story than it actually is. It's brotherhood to me."

Here's the thing. He's not wrong, and the Tumblr post I mentioned above has some thoughtful discussions on that fact. I know for myself that even way back in my Star Trek: Enterprise fandom days, I would occasionally wonder if we slashers were devaluing male friendship by interpreting the male characters' chemistry as romantic so much of the time. And I'm certainly aware that friends can love each other platonically.

And yet, I'm just so freaking disappointed.

It doesn't matter to me that the Russos' Word of God is that Bucket and Steeb are only friends. I'm used to creators overlooking or blindly ignoring aspects of their own work, especially when it veers towards territory they're uncomfortable with. Given what I've seen of Disney properties, it seems reasonable that even if the Russos were all over the Stucky like Red on Johann Schmidt, the mouse paying them would never, ever go for it.

But this is Sebastian Stan, who has played gay characters before and is actually playing Steve's long-lost whatever now. And if the actual actor who made Bucky Barnes live for us says Bucky and Steve are bros, not lovers, then...Then it's true. Then my wanting to see their relationship as anything other than that feels wrong. Illegitimate. Not a reinterpretation of canon, but a desperate scrabbling for something that never existed.

It's weird. I shipped Danny Williams and Steve McGarrett even when Hawaii 5-0 kept throwing women at Steve like spaghetti at a wall. In Stargate: Atlantis, I happily wrote around the cannon Rodney McKay/Jennifer Keller relationship to keep him with John Sheppard. I love Natasha Romanoff and Clint Barton shacking up even though they were both with other people in Age of Ultron (then again, I ignore a lot of things about Age of Ultron). But Sebastian Stan calls No Homo and suddenly I feel like a kid sneaking porn.

I wanted his approval, damn it. Not for me or my fic, because that's pathetic and creepy. But for the possibility that went into the fic. I wanted him to say, 'sure, that's cool,' and instead I got condemnation.

Maybe it is overly facile to see romance where there's only deep affection. Maybe we (female) writers are just picking out nonexistent subtext for all the same varied reasons we enjoy slash in general. Maybe we're just seeing what's not intended to be there, because we've been trained to (I urge you to read this brilliant essay on that subject). Maybe an actor's opinion about the character he plays shouldn't carry more weight than my own, but it feels heavier all the same.

This issue is that, as a writer who also writes fanfic, I'm always fighting the sense that my hobby is illicit; that I'm furtively dabbling where I don't belong. Allowing myself to do what I do is hard enough, without the knowledge that one of the actors who inspired it wouldn't accept my perception of his work. The fancy of tacit approval, no matter how spurious, is far more liberating than the certainty of its opposite. And honestly, I was expecting the guy who made his career playing troubled, gay sons to not reject the thought of a gay romance out of hand. Maybe seeing a romance in every love story is generalizing and easy, but that didn't mean he had to make it difficult.

The two seconds of the film wherein Bucky is happy
taste_is_sweet: (Want to dive into your ocean)
Starting today and for the next 12 days, there will be a charity giveaway from 224 authors, review bloggers and publishers, to reward anyone donating at least $5.00 to a LGBT charity of your choice.

You can access the giveaway and links to charities via this post at Diverse Reader. There's a short story in italics at the beginning, with the full information at the end of how to sign up, as well as a video showcasing the people and publishers donating books. I wanted to donate a book myself, but I only found out about it on April 10, when the call for book donations had closed, alas. But I'm going to give $10.00 to #Pizza4Equality after I finish posting this.

You may be asking, 'Why pizza, Sweet?' And Best-Beloveds, I shall tell you.

Memories Pizza sells pizza in Walkerton, Indiana. Indiana, of course, has been in the news lately because of Governor Mike Pence signing the Religious Freedom Restoration Act on March 26, which was widely criticized as allowing any business to refuse to serve anyone whose existence they deemed contrary to their religious beliefs. Specifically, members of the LGBT community.

Memories Pizza became a poster child for exactly what liberals feared, when one of the owners stated that if asked, she'd refuse to cater a same-sex wedding.

Now to be fair, no one had asked. And at least according to this article, Memories Pizza has never turned away a gay customer. However, the statement infuriated so many people that the Pizzeria ended up closing under the media storm and barrage of negative comments. Whereupon TV host Dana Loesch of the extreme conservative network The Blaze started a GoFundMe campaign to raise money for the embattled restaurant. (Do yourself a favor--don't read the comments on that link.)

And they got nearly a million dollars in two days.

So, enter #PizzaforEquality, started by Scott Wooledge, with the idea that maybe that much money could be raised to fund charities protecting LGBT people and their rights, rather than to fund those places who would deny them. It's been a good start, but it's been more than two days and the campaign closes on April 29, so I thought I'd boost the signal. And get a book. Because books are awesome.

So is pizza! But only if you're willing to share.
taste_is_sweet: (Bad Decisions)
The longer I don't post, the harder it is to think anyone might want to read any of my ridiculousness. You know how it is. (Or maybe you don't, in which case you are awesome.)

But! I do have some nifty stuff to mention, so I figure I should actually, you know, mention it. So here goes:

Dreamspinner Press, my favorite online purveyor of fine quality gay romance, is offering 50% off all of their in-stock paperbacks for the month of April! This includes my novel Black Hawk Tattoo, which is pretty great.
BlackHawkTattoo_FBThumb

I also have a new novella coming out in the beginning of May (I know I've mentioned it before but it's still totally \o/), which I'll talk about more once I have the cover design. It's called Aiden's Angel because it has an angel in it, in case you were wondering if the title was a coincidence. It is not.

Another cool thing is that I'm going to the Romantic Times Booklovers Convention (May 12 - 17)! It's in Dallas, and it looks like it'll be a lot of fun. I'm also nervous because I'll have to actually talk to people about how I have a novella out.

Any of my flisties going to be there? I'd love to meet up with you. :D

Last but not least, on the fanish side, Spring Sign Ups are open for [livejournal.com profile] intoabar! I freaking love this community--where else can you have Bucky Barnes meet Applejack the Pony? Nowhere else, that's where. I've already signed up (they close April 5, Best-Beloveds, so get in on it!), and I can almost guarantee that my entry this year will have an even less likely pairing. I can't wait. :D

Never heard of them? Of course you haven't!
Obscure Fandoms FTW!

taste_is_sweet: (Boom Baby!)
Pretty much all of us know what February 14 is, but did you know that February 15th is International Fanworks Day?

Well, you do now! And if you don't, or hate clicking links (it could happen), IFD is a creation of the Organization for Transformative Works, who are the lovely people who gave us the Archive of Our Own, among many other things. But currently relevant to my interests is their IFD Drabble Challenge.

The rules are simple: On February 15, post a drabble/drawble/short vid/another media format about your favorite character(s) getting fannish over something. Because of course they would. Does Draco Malfoy secretly ship Snarry? Does Clint Barton admire Oliver Queen? (I'm sure they'd totally be bros.)

I've got a drabble all set to go, and so does my buddy [livejournal.com profile] brumeier. I hope you guys will play too. And if you do, please comment here with a link so I can read it.

Come on, FListies! Write about your beloved characters as the fangirls and boys we all know they secretly are. I'll love you eleventy (which is far greater than three).
taste_is_sweet: (Boom Baby!)
It's been nearly two months since my last personal LJ post, O, Best-Beloveds, which means I've spectacularly failed my New Year's Resolutions. (I did, however, post at least once a week to [livejournal.com profile] ushobwri for NaNoWriMo, but you need to be a member to read them. They were awesome though, just saying. And you should totally become a member if you haven't already. Seriously, all the cool kids are doing it.)

However, even if I haven't been posting anything here, I've still been doing, stuff like a stuff-doing thing, let me tell you. Baking giant chocolate-chip cookies, for example. And writing my gift-fic for the final Stargate: Atlantis Secret Santa Gift Fic Exchange ever. ::sniffle:: (Posting for that starts on the 14th, and the marvelous mods will be asking for more pitch-hitters imminently. JUST THROWING THAT OUT THERE.)

I also finished and posted my epic Captain America/My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic crossover of epicness for the [livejournal.com profile] intoabar community! (I posted about it here, and it was epic.)

Bucky and Steve are not, actually, ponies. But I did manage to turn a cracky premise into nearly 40,000 words of angst, because that's how I trot roll. I'm actually quite proud of it, so I hope you might give it a read if improbable fanfiction crossovers are your thing. (The Archive of our Own collection of Intoabar fics is here, if you're interested. And you should be, because the world needs more Hawaii 5-0/Teen Wolf fics like burning.)

Only With the Heart as the CA/MLP fic is called, also fills the 'Invisibility' square of my Hurt/Comfort Bingo Card, which you may note I've been killing this year, Sweetpeas. Or at least hurting quite badly with comforting afterwards. Heh.

Last but not least, I've been mainlining YouTube vids. This is one of my current favorites:

And there goes another $1.29 to iTunes, Oh, la la.

So, yeah, totally stuffy, or something. And always happy to give. I'm a giver. <3

Do you Lovelies have anything to share and/or crow about for me? I'll bet you do, Chickadees! And after all, it's the holidays and sharing is caring (Oh, la la).

taste_is_sweet: (Gilded)
I have a thing, it turns out, where I'll buy a CD (or download an album), listen the hell out of it for weeks, then put it away and not look at it again for years. My problem is that I almost never have music on during the day. Unless I'm in the car, where we generally just tune in to the least-crappy of the local radio stations, my day is silent other than the cats and my swearing at the computer. I can't write and listen to music at the same time, and I tend to forget to turn it on when I do chores. Hence the years of abandoned CDs.

So even though I'd copied all the songs from Barenaked Ladies' Gordon album to my phone a good while ago, it was just this week when I actually listened to it again.

Funny how I'd remembered the songs but forgotten how excellent most of them were. This song is one of my absolute favorites:


Not the most awesome video, but Steven Page could sure rock a 90s haircut and frilly shirt.

I bought Gordon (way) back when it came out in 1992, and heard "What a Good Boy", and basically had my personal angst theme-song for the next ten years. Just the lines: I wake up scared; I wake up strange; I wake up wondering if anything in my life is ever going to change encapsulated the gormless anxiety I seemed to carry with me all the time, and singing the song at the top of my lungs offered an aggressive pathos that made me feel both connected to every other miserable twenty-something on the planet and smugly isolated at the same time.

My 90s were kind of terribly awesome.

That decade was an astonishingly long time ago, but I still have the Gordon album, and the songs are still amazing. The others I've been listening the hell out of are "The Flag" (an achingly beautiful song about domestic abuse), and "Wrap Your Arms Around Me" (the line, Do you believe we are all innately good? in that gorgeous harmony gets me every single time).

I really should listen to it more often. And my other CDs as well.

::Eyes Evanescence::

Well, maybe not all of them.
taste_is_sweet: (Chuck was Worried)
I love the internet.

You probably do too--you're here, after all (and thank you for that). The 'net has given me fandom, friendships, introduced me to things I never knew existed, and enabled my first professional novel.

The World Wide Web is a repository of the simultaneously best and worst of humanity. Name anything you could possible want to learn about, see, hear, share or buy and it will be there in one form or another. Because of the internet we can debunk urban legends; learn new and awesome terminology; revel in fandom; and read stories and stories and stories and stories and stories.

And if you live in the U.S., you might lose it.

This excellent excerpt from Last Week Tonight not only makes the situation pellucid (that was for [livejournal.com profile] brumeier), it's incredibly funny. Well worth 13 minutes of your time. Just be careful of the NSFW language.



For those of you who don't have 13 minutes, the TL:DR version is this:

The biggest cable companies in the U.S., like Comcast and Verizon, want the Government to enact a law that will let them charge internet companies (think Netflix; Amazon; Etsy; that place where you bought that stuff that came in a box with no return address) more money to enable them to load faster on your computer.

That means companies who can't afford to pay (like that place with no return address) will suddenly become far less accessible. It's like the Fastpass at the Universal Theme Park in Orlando: The companies who can't pay will end up waiting in line to get to the consumer Revenge of the Mummy ride, while the rich ones just walk on through.

We can't let that happen. It probably will, but there's still time to do something about it. Go to fcc.gov/comments, read the simple instructions, and leave a public comment. Hopefully if enough people remind the Government who voted for them, it might keep this from happening.

Might. I'm not holding my breath--I'm not Comcast; I can't afford it.
taste_is_sweet: (Target Acquired!)
Raise your hand if you like Hurt/Comfort, which I'm sure you all do because anything else is as inconceivable as hating kittens (I love kittens; The icon is an in-joke with my sister [livejournal.com profile] squeakyoflight. No kittens were hurt during the writing of this post).

We love you, Bucky!
Bucky falls cropped & screened

For anyone not up on the fannish lingo, "Hurt/Comfort" stands for the wonderful creative exercise of tormenting the shit out of a favorite character--this is called 'whumping'--and then having your other favorite character(s) take care of him.

Often the whumpee is the hero. Almost equally often he's the Lancer, The Darkhorse, The Co-Hero and/or that one beloved character whom nobody else understands. But if he's popular, at some point someone is going to hurt him. Very, very badly. Occasionally even the writers of the original material, though rarely as frequently or as terribly as the fans would like.

Not bad, but he's still standing.
Hurt Steve

(And I'm using 'him' because I think I've read a fic where a female character was the whumpee maybe once since I started reading fanfiction. Not that I read fanfiction...Okay, yes. Yes I do.)

I'm bringing this up because the movie Captain America: The Winter Soldier came out recently (You may have seen it). And after watching, my brilliant and adorable 12 year-old niece, who previously said that Captain America was her favorite, has now switched her allegiance entirely to the eponymous anti-hero of the subtitle. Why? Because of the suffering.

Yep, she's within throwing distance of her teens, and she has already understood that, while horrible to witness in real life, physical and mental injuries improve the attractiveness of a fictional character exponentially. And the Fighting Man for Lousy Climates gets that in spades. Like the kind you could use to dig a deep hole to pitch him into.

I love my niece, and I love that she's been bitten by the H/C bug. I love that there's this wonderful fangurl in the making. I love that she will probably write fanfic herself someday, and I'll get to share it with her. I love how she makes me remember being a kid and telling my sister fanfic stories for hours on end without knowing what fanfic even was, and populating them with my fictional crushes at the time. And, yes, treating them mercilessly and loving every second.

I have a hypothesis on why, exactly, H/C is so awesome (and I'm sure especially awesome among women), but you should probably just read this instead. I admit, however, that most of the time I don't really care about the why. I just love it.

Like kittens. And don't we all love kittens?

Picture of Bucky having a very bad day courtesy of [livejournal.com profile] lastsongs at [livejournal.com profile] grande_caps; Picture of Steve's moderately-acceptable injuries courtesy of Swannee's Screencaps.

taste_is_sweet: (Vague)
Meet John: biblical, dependable, easy to pronounce and one of the most popular American names for the last 100 years. Name of kings, princes, presidents, philosophers and my brother-in-law, it conjures up thoughts of loyalty and steadfastness, simplicity and quiet strength. John will always pull kitties out of wells and get his gun and come marching home (hurrah!) and hold the line.

I'm sure it's for those reasons that John is also a name given to a hilariously astonishing number of fictional characters (There was even a John Doe TV series, but I'm not sure that counts). What I find especially interesting is that John is so often used as a first name for the lead character, when the fact its such a common name would imply that the author couldn't think of anything more interesting. Though I suppose that also works in the name's favor, since you could also argue that a John will be instantly more familiar with the audience than, say, an Anthony or Rodney.

A couple of weeks ago, [livejournal.com profile] brumeier and I spent a good half-hour coming up with as many fictional Johns as we could. We eventually branched into Jack as well, because Jack used to be a nickname for John.

Here, with a very few more recent additions, were what we came up with off the top of our heads:

(All the links go to Wikipedia, because that was easiest and there are a hell of a lot of links.)

John Sheppard (Stargate: Atlantis)
John Kennex (Almost Human)
John Diggle (Arrow)
John Garrett (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.)
John Dunne (Magnificent Seven)
John Connor (Terminator Franchise)
John Chricton (Farscape)
Johann Schmidt (Captain America Franchise)
John Constantine (Hellblazer Comic)
John Carter (John Carter of Mars Franchise)
John Snow (A Song of Ice and Fire Series/Game of Thrones)
John Winchester (Supernatural)
John Locke (Lost)
John Watson (Sherlock Holmes)
Little John (Robin Hood)
Johnny Blaze (Ghost Rider Franchise)
Johnny Storm (Fantastic Four Franchise)
Johnny Mnemonic (Johnny Mnemonic)

Jack Sparrow (Pirates of the Caribbean Franchise)
Jack Harkness (Torchwood)
Jack O'Neill (Stargate: SG-1)
Jack Carter (Eureka)
Jack (Jack the Giant Slayer/Killer and many, many other versions)
Jaq-Jaq (Disney's Cinderella)
Jack (Oblivion)
Jack Burton (Big Trouble in Little China)
Jack Shephard (Lost)
Jack Power (Power Pack Comic)

Crazy, right? And that's just off the top of our heads. I'm sure you guys know even more Johns and Jacks we haven't thought of, and that's not including the countless Johns and Jacks who appear in fairy tales and nursery rhymes.

I also find it hilarious how SyFy named two characters Jack and two characters John in four different series, and that Lost had a John and a Jack (and a James!). I also love how Jack's last name was 'Shephard', likely for the same reason as John Sheppard on SGA. They roll trippingly off the tongue, do those J names.

So, did we miss any Johns or Jacks, O Best-Beloveds? Any other names that you see on fictional characters all the time? (James seems pretty popular too, as does Peter and Steve.) Any non-American ones? I'd love to hear 'em.
taste_is_sweet: (Felicity)
You guys know what I'm talking about--that episode where normally competent, logical and sane characters lose their collective minds in order for a plot to happen. My personal favorite (and by 'favorite' I mean 'most hated') is the Stargate: Atlantis season two episode The Long Goodbye, where the same people who were nearly blown up by a starship commander with an alien entity in his head the episode before, decide to let alien entities into the heads of the military commander and leader of the entire expedition. Naturally this goes just as badly as you'd expect. Hyjinks ensue.
And this kiss, which made all the McKay/Sheppard shippers cry.
Kiss


There were even worse violations of logic and sense that season (::cough, Michael, ::cough::), but I know SGA is far from the only series of any genre which has given the characters collective brain damage when convenient. A more recent favorite of mine is another second season episode (and is there something about year two?) of Arrow, where despite constant and deadly hijackings, aid trucks continue to be sent into a destroyed and lawless part of the city with no protection and their logos clear on the vehicle sides.

If only we could do something about that!
Capture

But nowhere, nowhere, is this example of joint idiocy more prevalent than in any plot requiring a normally intelligent character to somehow not recognize another character in a flimsy disguise.

Arrow, of course, is a perfect example of this. And while I know that the whole show would collapse if Officer Quentin Lance ever noticed how very similar Arrow's height, breadth and the lower half of his face was to Oliver Queen, or if Laurel Lance ever recognized the enormous cleft in The Canary's chin as belonging to her sister, the absolute impossibility of this lack of recognition is both hilarious and irritating as hell.

I mean, we're not talking Batman-esque cowls here. We're talking teeny little eye masks with a wig and/or a hood. As an example, I made a hero of my own:

My husband by day...
Dom as is

And as a badass superhero! Let's call him, 'The Engineer'.
Dom the superhero


I know that none of you know him as well as I do, but seriously. How long would it take you to recognize him after speaking to him face-to-face day after day for several minutes at a time? And his nifty steampunk goggles actually make his eyes harder to see than the characters' eyes in the show. Quentin is a cop, for Pete's sake. His daughter Laurel is a hotshot lawyer. Presumably they'd be good at noticing stuff, like how similar those two vigilantes are to people they've known for decades.

"I can't help but feel I'm missing something."
Paul Blackthorne

Or if that's too much to ask, what about the fact that The Arrow and The Canary only appeared shortly after Oliver Queen and Sarah Lance returned from the dead?

And yet, the selective idiot ball keeps getting passed around. Maybe one day, Starling City's finest (former) Detective will actually detect that that Arrow guy is awfully familiar...

And hopefully he'll deal with it better than these guys.

taste_is_sweet: (Want to dive into your ocean)
Those of you living in civilized countries outside the United States may not know that recently Arizona (state of that smug bastard Roadrunner and that city where everyone makes a wrong turn; not to mention the state where it is now legal for a cop to ask anyone for their immigration papers at anytime, anywhere, if there is "reasonable suspicion" that the person is insufficiently light-skinned an illegal alien) voted in a bill that would have allowed businesses to refuse to serve people based on sexual orientation on religious grounds.

Arizona Governor Jan Brewer vetoed the bill (same link just above) after even the Republicans who had voted for it realized that pissing off Apple and the Superbowl committee might be a bad idea. Joh Stewart of the Daily Show has hilarious commentary on it below. (Unfortunately it's in two parts.):




But Mississippi, a state I know so little about that I had to look up its capitol (It's Jackson), decided to take up the banner of discrimination and vote in its own law about the very same thing.

The state flag of Mississippi, which perhaps tells us everything we need to know*
 photo Mississippistateflag.jpg

But it's Religious freedom, y'all. It's not about not serving homosexuals. It's about... allowing people to not serve homosexuals. In the name of freedom.

(I hope that my American FListies will sign this petition against it. It's endorsed by Lance Bass! Who should possibly move.)

But the thing I really don't get about Mississippi's bill is this: How do you tell if someone is homosexual before you serve them? I mean, same-sex marriage is illegal in Mississippi; it's not like any give bakery in Jackson is going to have a homosexual couple ordering a wedding cake. And sure, maybe if someone wants two bridal dresses for a commitment ceremony it might tip off the owner of the local Dress Barn. But what about restaurants? Or shoe stores? Or, I dunno, pet salons? Are you really going to ask someone if they're gay before you shave their dog? Even if they come prancing in dressed like Johnny Weir at an Oscar after-party, can you be sure that they threaten the God-given sanctity of your divorce just by existing? Unless a Canadian walks into your ski shop, how can you even know?

Obviously, the next step is for Mississippi to pass a law like Arizona's, that will let anyone ask for one's sexual orientation at any given time. And then they'd need to issue gay IDs. And then have special homosexual ghettos to make sure that no businesses are threatened by gays or lesbians trying to pass as normal people.

And then jail them for acting homosexual in public. Like Russia, to protect the children. Maybe those Reds have the right idea after all!



*To be fair, Georgia only got rid of the Confederate Battle Flag on their state flag in 2003.

taste_is_sweet: (Want to dive into your ocean)
Oh, yeah. That evil homosexual agenda is alive and well, my friends, despite Russian President Vladimir Putin's brave efforts to ban all homosexuals from being alive endangering the poor, innocent Russian children (because all homosexuals are obviously pedophiles, just like all Russians miss Communism).

Back in June, Russia passed the "Gay Propaganda Law", which makes it illegal to tell children about gay equality. More recently, Russia officially made it illegal to let anyone from a country where same-sex marriage is allowed to adopt Russian children. Because the mere possibility that the adoptive parents might be gay is of course of far greater concern than how many Russian children won't be able to have families.

We have to think of the kids' quality of life, people! How could they ever be happy with loving, likely wealthy parents who might hug them with their evil gay arms?

But sadly, Putin's careful stance against the evil gays has come to naught. A couple of days ago, the coach of the Canadian Olympic Ski Team helped a Russian skier finish his race by loaning him a ski. Now, Justin Wadsworth is actually an American, but he was born in Seattle and married Canadian Skier Beckie Scott, so he's basically Canadian anyway. But that's not the point.

The point is, that as part of the Canadian Olympic team, he has, most likely, been in the vicinity of Anastasia Bucsis, the openly lesbian Canadian speed skater. He may have even clapped her on the shoulder, or shaken her hand. And he lives in a country that's already been banned from adopting Russian children.

Which means, O best-beloveds, that it was no innocent spare ski that Wadsworth put on Anton Gafarov's foot. That was a gay Canadian ski, strapped there by likely gay-touching hands.

Does the insidiousness of Canadian propaganda know no bounds?

Sure, Putin himself may have recently hugged a lesbian Dutch speed skater at a party (and really, the fact he didn't ban speed skating, which is clearly rife with homosexuality, was a gross oversight on his part), but he's an adult. He can make educated decisions about who he cuddles in his spare time. He's not a poor, defenseless child rife for brainwashing into applauding the devious Homosexual Agenda.

But what can be done about Anton Gafarov? His foot is now contaminated with gay, which will shortly spread up his leg and eventually into his brain, and who knows what horrors it will wreak upon his person. Will he want to move to Canada and marry a Canadian? Will he begin listening raptly to the fabulous commentary of Johnny Weir? Will he turn gay and start molesting children like every single other homosexual anywhere ever? I fear for him and anyone he may touch from now on. I really do.

Gay Canadian skis one day; a Siberian prison the next. Don't say I didn't warn you.
taste_is_sweet: (Harlock Skull)
Just in case you thought there could possibly be a genre of music out there that no one has thought of yet, I give you:



Pirate Death Metal

Aye, me hearties! Buckle that swash and gang the plank! Here be Scottish lads who turned their love of all things pirate and alcohol-fueled into what should have been a cute Ren Faire filking act and instead became a thriving music career.

And of course, after pirates, there have to be ninjas, right? Googling "Ninja Heavy Metal" immediately resulted in--what else--a band called Heavy Metal Ninjas. They're from New Zealand, because of course they are.

Now that I'd found pirates and ninjas, the next step was obvious. "Astronaut Metal" resulted in a link to the Irish band "God is an Astronaut". They're not heavy metal so much as...heavy instrumental? Kind of? They don't seem to actually sing. Check out their YouTube channel. A lot of their stuff is surprisingly pretty.

Just for fun, I Googled "Dinosaur Heavy Metal" because dinosaurs are really, really awesome and at this point I figure you could probably throw random words together and discover a heavy metal music genre for it.

Ladies and Gentlemen, meet Hevisaurus, from Finland. Heavisaurus are a heavy metal band for children, who dress up as dinosaurs. Like you do. Here's a video:



Check out that hair and leather. These guys are hardcore.

Sadly, Googling "Heavy Metal Fairy Tales" did not produce another band. It did, however, result amazingly enough in Heavy Metal Fairy Tales. Apparently a self-published books series which use heavy metal lyrics as dialogue.

"Cat Heavy Metal" is not a genre, alas. But Babymetal is!



At least in Japan.

Anyone else out there have a potential heavy metal genre? I didn't look up unicorns or aliens, but I'm optimistic.
taste_is_sweet: (Bad Decisions)
I love the interweebs, I do. Oh, I do, with the unbridled passion of a thousand fiery suns. What did I ever do without the internet besides probably being way more productive? I can't even remember; it's just that awesome.

This is also another glimpse into the occasionally bizarre machinations of my brain (though at least not as bizarre as it can occasionally get). Let me show you:

Last night, I read this article on Cracked.Com, which I highly recommend not actually visiting unless you don't mind losing hours of your life. Many, many hours.

This particular time warp in written form was a list (Cracked.com loves lists) of 6 superpowers that would actually suck to have. The most awful was a Wolverine-esque healing factor. The author posited that having a healing factor that would allow you to survive almost any wound wouldn't = 'awesome' so much as 'horrific PTSD'. Which gave me ideas.

Always dangerous.
 photo Ideas.jpg

This will doubtless amaze anyone who knows me, but I kind of have a thing for (fictional! Dear God, fictional!) emotional and physical H/C, something that has served me well in the past. So instead of going to sleep at you're-an-idiot o'clock in the morning I started thinking of a story plot involving some poor schmuck who could heal really fast and how psychologically godawful it was.

At first I thought this'd be fanfic, but I decided I couldn't be that horrible to Captain America (or John Sheppard again). Besides, everyone knows that when you hurt Steve Rogers a kitten dies.

Most Marvel Universe fanfiction is known as the Great AO3 Kitten Massacre.
 photo Kitten.jpg

With fanfiction obviously out, I figured I'd write something original that took place during WWII, with my own original superhero. Canadian, of course. Only I couldn't call him 'Captain Canuck' or 'Captain Canada', because that had a) been done and b) was kind of lame. And since our national animal is not only furry and adorable, but also regrettably associated with female anatomy, I couldn't use that, either. So I went to the web to see what other nicknames for Canadians I could use.

And here my adventures began.

As it turns out, 'Canuck' pretty much encompasses the entire gamut of Canadian nicknames. But at least my fruitless Googling turned up Johnny Canuck, a Canadian equivalent of Captain America who kicked Nazi ass during WW II. Even cooler, the Wikipedia article link I found said that a publishing house called Moonstone had started a new series starring Johnny Canuck and a bunch of other Canadian superheros.

Naturally I zapped over to Moonstone, and discovered that they were selling the first three issues ridiculously cheap, so I bought them. Then, wondering if there were any more, I clicked on the link for the artist and discovered that he's Canadian too, and also actually famous.

Sadly, it seems that Northern Guard is no more, probably because almost no one outside Canada had heard of them. Hell, I used to live in Canada and I hadn't heard of most of them, either. But Mr. Templeton did have this really awesome list of famous fictional Canadians that made me feel better.

So all in all, while my research was technically fruitless, I did get some new comic books out of it and more warm fuzzies about my homeland. Which we could use right now in Texas, being as we're at the ass-end of a major ice storm.

Of course, it's still colder in Canada. But they're used to it.

(The photos are 'Thinking Woman Looking Up' by David Castillo Dominici, and 'Sad Kitten' by Tina Phillps, via Free Digital Photos.net.)

taste_is_sweet: (Please be Advised)
For someone unashamedly adverse to danger, I have a fascination with mountain climbing.

(Warning: this deals with dead climbers, so to both set and lighten the mood a little, here is a picture of my son being an adorable zombie for Halloween:)
Cutest. Zombie. Ever.
 photo ZombieJavierHalloween20135.jpg

Ready to read about dead people? Great, let's go: )



This post was inspired by a fantastic Avengers AU fanfic called The Mountain (though the mountain in the title is K2), written by Jay Tryfanstone

taste_is_sweet: (Really You Can)
I was going to do a post on something far more informative and, dare I say, useful, but in the process of finding pictures for it, I happened (totally accidentally, I swear) to come across this.

The article, though extremely, um, fascinating, is not the important part. The beautiful males on display without their shirts isn't the important part either (though I had to examine them closely and at length to determine that. RESEARCH, PEOPLE). The important part is that the CW Television Channel that owns Arrow did it in the first place.

Those posters of the three hunky heroic main characters on Arrow are blatant fanservice. 'Fanservice' (for those not following the link because they know that TV Tropes.com is a gateway drug of epic timesuck), refers to how entertainment producers will purposely contrive to display the bodies of attractive characters as a reward for fan loyalty.

Mostly, fanservice is intended for straight men (lesbians and bisexual anybody are an afterthought). There are many reasons for this, but personally I think it comes down to, a) most mass-market entertainment being written and/or designed by men; and, b) a general assumption that women watch for the plot while men need added encouragement.
I think this movie had giant robots in it.
 photo Capture-1.jpg

But that doesn't mean fanservice for straight women (and those who aren't straight but like it too) doesn't exist. Indeed, I think that it's steadily increasing. The Spartacus TV series on Starz is a perfect example. Sure, there were topless or naked women everywhere, but I swear that season three had even more naked men. I've never seen so many manscaped, jiggly male bits in my life. It was awesome.

And the CW channel knows what side its bread is buttered on. Specifically the side that generally appreciates jiggly male bits. And they are fanservicing them like crazy.

I love it. A lot of that love is for how hilariously obvious it is. I only watch the CW's show Arrow, but aside from the shirtless posters I linked to, nearly every episode includes generous shots of Oliver Queen exercising or sparring with his buddy John Diggle. And Stephen Amell is always, always shirtless when he does it. It's like the producers are winkingly inviting us to simultaneously admire the display and be in on the joke.

It goes beyond the eye candy. Arrow's fanservice makes me feel included; like the CW actually values my attention. I know that it's really about getting advertisers to pay for a target audience, but it's nice to be a target audience for once, especially for my favorite genre.

And I definitely appreciate beauty.
 photo colton-haynes-stephen-amell-shirtless-arrow-posters-02.jpg

It's a beautiful thing.

taste_is_sweet: (But some of us are looking at the stars)
Anybody out there want to hear a wonderful song co-written by a Canadian astronaut and Ed Robertson of the Barenaked Ladies? Of course you would.

Commander Chris Hadfield: 52, prize-winning military test pilot, driver of the Canadarm, veteran Astronaut and very soon to be commander of the International Space Station. He was also born on a farm in rural Ontario, plays guitar and sings in two all-astronaut rock bands, and has had Twitter conversations with Starfleet. From space.
Not to mention that he totally rocks that mustache
 photo ChrisHadfield.jpg

You might notice that his mission crest is in the shape of a guitar pick because, awesome (as well as the mission's emphasis on science and art).

Obviously it would be harder for this guy to get much cooler, and yet he manages it, with the help of the Barenaked Ladies, a school choir and the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. How? By preforming with them from the International Space Station, singing a song he co-wrote with Ed Robertson.

Yes, O best-beloveds, Commander Chris Hadfield also writes his own music. When he's not commanding a space mission, driving the Canadarm or tweeting. From space.

The song is called I.S.S. (Is Somebody Singing?), and premiered February 8 on the CBC. It's a sweetly geeky mashup of science and art like the mission itself, with lines like If you could see our nation; from the International Space Station; You'd know why I want to get back soon, which is perfect in it's typically quiet Canadian patriotism. (If you Commonwealthers out there are wondering why Hatfield uses Imperial instead of Metric measurements in the song, I'm fairly sure it comes down to his having likely been in high school when Canada changed to the Metric system, as well as his years working with Americans.)

It's also a beautiful piece of music in its own right, which makes me tear up every time I listen to it. Because I'm Canadian and we're all giant saps when it comes to our homeland.

Here's the song on YouTube, and a link to the music and lyrics.

This song makes me especially happy because I'm getting home as soon as Friday, visiting my family over the March break. And you can bet I'll get teary-eyed every time I hear it, doubtless to my dear sister's great amusement.

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