A man once asked me … how I managed in my books to write such natural conversation between men when they were by themselves. Was I, by any chance, a member of a large, mixed family with a lot of male friends? I replied that, on the contrary, I was an only child and had practically never seen or spoken to any men of my own age till I was about twenty-five. “Well,” said the man, “I shouldn’t have expected a woman (meaning me) to have been able to make it so convincing.” I replied that I had coped with this difficult problem by making my men talk, as far as possible, like ordinary human beings. This aspect of the matter seemed to surprise the other speaker; he said no more, but took it away to chew it over. One of these days it may quite likely occur to him that women, as well as men, when left to themselves, talk very much like human beings also.

Dorothy L. SayersAre Women Human?: Astute and Witty Essays on the Role of Women in Society

Book Geek Quote #445

(via bookgeekconfessions)

(via sarahreesbrennan)

"Summerly I go to the beach." If you do not approve of that sentence, I don’t want to live in your dark and joyless little world.

99% Invisible is the best podcast you’re not listening to. (via mylookingglassisbroken)

(via doktoro-esperanto)


(this will be continuously edited as people are revealed, as posts are made, as time passes. that means that the post you are viewing MAY NOT be the most current and up to date post. to view the most up to date version of this masterpost, please click here . if i have missed anyone, please send me links, and i will add to this post. we cannot let this keep getting brushed under the rug. i will not allow it)

lets begin with the most important parts:

Hotlines, sources, and outreach for survivors, friends of survivors, and general knowledge. 

What is Consent?

  • Consent is a voluntary, sober,  enthusiastic, creative, wanted, informed, mutual, honest, and verbal agreement
  • Consent must be willing
  • Consent is an active agreement: Consent cannot be coerced
  • Consent is a process, which must be asked for every step of the way; if you want to move to the next level of sexual intimacy, just ask,
  • Consent is never implied and cannot be assumed, even in the context of a relationship. Just because you are in a relationship does not mean that you have permission to have sex with your partner
  • A person who is intoxicated cannot legally give consent. If you’re too drunk to make decisions and communicate with your partner, you’re too drunk to consent

Consent is not

  • The absence of “no”
  • Implied or assumed, even in a relationship
  • Silence or not responding
  • When someone says “yes” because they feel pressured or afraid of how their partner would respond to no
  • “I’m not sure”
  • “I don’t know”
  • “I’m scared”
  • Consent for one thing does not mean consent for everything
  • Consent given once does not mean always
  • Being passed out or sleeping does not equal consent

the following people are abusers, rapists, manipulators. Be safe, be careful, and do not be scared to speak out if you fear that “you are going to ruin their life”. you are not ruining their lives, you are saving the lives of other potential victims.

(please be warned that some of the following stories can be graphic, read at your own discretion.)

Mike Lombardo

Alex Day (nerimon)

Josiah Files (josiahfiles/3dpiss)

Josh Macedo (confusedtree)

Kelly Montoya (kellyinigomontoya)

Tom Mclean (frezned)

Tom Milsom (hexachordal)

Danny Hooper

Ed Blann (eddplant)

Joseph Asfoury

Alex Carpenter

Lily Gartz (genderikari/cristobalite)

Rodrigo Passalacqua (lampghost)

Michael Cook (drillbittaylor/crunchberrymessiah)

Renard Queenston (queenston)

Luke Conard

James (ask-omnipony/omniEDM)

(Source: fleshsuppers)



I just watched the first episode of theartassignment.

Turns out I already completed the Meet in the Middle assignment a few years ago.

My friend Emma and I wanted to find the midway point between our houses. I made a small purple flag which said “Emmae Point” (because we’re both called Emma and the plural of Emma is of course Emmae), we synchronised our watches, hopped on our bikes and headed out from our respective starting points.

Also, to make sure it was all accurate, we decided she’d peddle slightly slower than usual and I slightly faster to account for the differing lengths of our legs (science!).

It took around 13 minutes to find Emmae Point and plant our flag in a sand dune somewhere along New Brighton beach in Christchurch, New Zealand.

Occasionally we’ll still meet at Emmae point when we’re both home in the summer and feel like going for a swim.

Just lovely.

(via theartassignment)


Many of you already know about some of the recent events concerning various YouTube performers and allegations of sexual misconduct. When I read about this (and it seems to come and come right now), I thought, “I have nothing to add to this.” So I just watched. And was sad. And also heartened by the fact that a really serious, progressive conversation as going on.

 But then I read a piece about these events (it was in the Daily Dot, the link is here). This quote stuck with me.

 “Looking at the responses from Alex Day, the Green brothers, and the cofounder of DFTBA records, one begins to notice something missing from the conversation: female voices. Among the various sex scandals and the resulting blog posts from friends and coworkers, it’s vanishingly rare to hear from any woman who isn’t speaking from the perspective of a victim or fan.

It would be grossly inaccurate to say that there are no women in the amorphous online community that surrounds the vlogbrothers, DFTBA Records, Tumblr fandom celebrities and geek-culture bands like Chameleon Circuit. But when it comes to the kind of devoted fan community one finds on Tumblr, most of the Internet celebrities who end up with “idol” status are part of the same demographic: cute, nerdy white guys who write and vlog about things like Doctor Who, YA literature, feminism, gay rights, and Internet culture.”

I thought about this a lot. Aside from Melissa Anelli, I didn’t see any women speaking about it from entirely outside the sphere of events. And that did bother me. (Though I want to add: I think Hank Green made an excellent video on this topic. I hope it gets a million views.)

So, because that gap is there, and because I have the benefit of being older—I thought I might widen the focus a little and talk about my own experience and maybe how we got here and where we can go from this point. Because there are many, many places to go.

I’m about to get personal, and also, if you have any issues with stories of a sexual/abusive nature, just be aware that I am about to list some. But if you can bear with it, maybe go through, because there is a rainbow on the other side.

I was recently reading David Sedaris’s latest book, and in one essay he brings up the fact that as a teenager, he had the sudden and off-putting realization that all of his sisters had been approached by men in cars who had exposed themselves to them while masturbating. And I stopped for a moment, because something in my brain said, “Well, of course.” It happened to me when I was 14, stuck outside of school on a Philadelphia side street late one afternoon when my mom had forgotten what time our holiday concert practice was over. I was lured to the car when the man mumbled a request for directions. I seem to remember using a string of expletives and most likely my middle finger, then I spent the next 45 minutes debating whether or not to knock on the convent door and ask to be allowed to stay inside until my mom got there. In the end, I angrily paced the sidewalk until she got there, furious that it had happened, thinking up new, as-yet unheard of curses. I wanted him to come back so I could key his car into the next century. I wanted to go home.

I said nothing to my mother.

In my protected life, largely devoid of danger, I have been:

 -       Physically grabbed twice on city streets and pulled along by a stranger until breaking loose

-       Groped on the street (no count on that)

-       Groped on an airplane over the course of several hours while crossing the Atlantic until I told the person responsible (who had by then come to sit next to me on the plane) that I had a TERRIBLE SICKNESS (I had mono) and coughed in his face until he retreated. Then I leaned over and coughed over the seat on him.

-       Ground on the subway. (Look this one up if you don’t know it.)

-       When answering an ad for a nanny while working abroad in London, lured to a remote location by a much older man, where it was revealed the entire interview was a false pretense. I was then offered money in exchange to be a live-in sexual partner (the salary would include “three times a week, some dinners, and clothes.”) This episode ended with me jumping out of a still (slowly) moving car.

-       Given GHB (or similar) at a party by someone who then followed me as I left (as I realized there was something wrong and I was losing consciousness). He attempted to lure me to come back with him to his room, and I kept conscious long enough to continue walking away.  I got to where I was staying and locked the door before passing out, fully dressed, coat on, on the floor for five hours.

-       And one other incident I prefer not to go into, of a more serious nature. (Don’t panic. I just prefer not to, and it’s my prerogative not to. I am sure you understand.)

I really have led a very protected life. These things I describe? Are really quite common. Gross, right? And I was born into relative privilege, so there are so many women facing so much worse. (Also, gender is irrelevant here. These things can and do happen to anyone. But the numbers for women are higher, and I am getting to that.)

Why did I just make that list?  Why did I drop this series of bummers on you? I’ll tell you.

The idea is this: things just HAPPEN to girls, and it’s part of the fabric. We often don’t even mention them. Or maybe, we DIDN’T. Not so much. Because it was just understood that there was a certain amount of shit we were going to have to go through, and the only possible responses were to: OVERPROTECT US, or BLAME US, or NOT BELIEVE US. Because what the hell else do you do? (When I have described these things, often matter-of-factly to men I now know in adulthood, they tend to sit there and boggle because so many SIMPLY DO NOT KNOW how very common it all is.)

I’ve seen many of you commenting about these recent events and saying that you want to give up on your community of friends, that you’re confused and sad and disappointed and what is going on and how did this even happen?

To the case at hand…

It is important to note that in cases of abuse and exploitation—gender is irrelevant. But it is also worth noting that the cases we are talking about now are all about girls—usually underage—being taken advantage of by males, a bit older, with some celebrity. I spend a lot of my free time* trying to start discussions on the nature of gender in book publishing, as that’s where I work. As a culture we do tend to give the nod to men more than women—as voices of authority, as objects of adulation, as examples of excellence and the standard bearers of quality. This is not a vast conspiracy, but a long and deep rooted habit that is taking time to unwork. But one of the steps to unworking is to realize that it’s a thing. THIS DOES NOT MEAN YOU CANNOT OR SHOULD NOT HAVE MALE HEROES. It does mean that we need to explore, on occasion, the nature of the adulation.

In these recent cases, the adulation turned into sexual exploitation, something that’s not new in any respect. BUT! What is new is the focus and awareness that’s been brought to the subject. Take heart, and take notes. And watch Hank’s video, because I think he really nails it. The idea that sex and romance is a chase—a wild, violent chase in which one party must submit—is problematic in the extreme. When discussing any kind of sexual contact—if you’re not talking from the same level, it’s not a discussion, and it’s not healthy. If you are offered the chance to have some kind of sexual contact with a “celebrity” (of any water) ask yourself this: do I feel like I am less than this person? Is this person doing me a favor? Is this person LIFTING ME UP because I am SO LOW and they are so AMAZING and they can do ANYTHING and I am A WORM and must put up with it to keep this AMAZING THING.

Those are the wrong answers, and it means it’s not a healthy relationship.

And if you’re a minor and this person is an adult? Please listen to your Auntie MJ. You may be thinking, “But this case is different! We really love each other! [Other person] is not like the others! I’m not like the others! This isn’t weird! We’re totally a couple!”

You’re not a couple. You’re a victim, and you need to get out of there and tell someone what is going on. I know there may be a pull inside of you—a pull so strong—toward this person. You may think this is going to work out. It’s not going to work out. I am not trying to kill your dreams, but to get you to a place of safety, as you are currently not in one. ACTUAL ADULTS KNOW THAT IT IS NOT ACCEPTABLE TO HAVE SEXUAL CONTACT WITH MINORS. Adults that do not follow this rule ARE PREDATORS. There is a reason it’s illegal. It’s not just some idiots trying to ruin your good time. YOU WILL ONLY BE THANKFUL LATER THAT YOU GOT OUT OF THERE.

 And don’t let this mislead you into thinking that you should give up on all the things you love, that there’s a dangerous spider under every rock. There isn’t. And if we all move into this conversation and make it a public one, and make it a healthy one, only good can come.

I can tell you this…I’ve been, like I said, in some of these dark corners, and I’m here, right now, a FULLY GROWN LADY, and I’m doing awesome. None of those bastards slowed me down. If anything, I stepped on a few of them to get to you guys. I love your enthusiasm and I love your fandoms and I love how you embrace all of these new, great things—these songs and stories and people. There is no reason to give up. None at all. NOT EVERYONE IS BAD. That’s one of the lies that these kinds of incidents breed. If you need help, HELP IS OUT THERE IN DROVES. 

Do not be afraid to tell someone. It’s the only way it stops.

Those of us who have crashed on the rocks—well, we climbed the rocks and built a lighthouse. And we keep the lights on for you, and we will always be here, and the light will remain on no matter how great the storm. And when the storm is over, we will still be here.



* the concept of “free time” is a nebulous one



Sexual Abuse, Consent, and Culture

If you haven’t heard, there have been some really troubling stories about manipulative and even possibly abusive relationships between online creators and their fans.

While that situation certainly spurred me to make this video, I also think a video like this is long overdo. We’re excited to be facing these problems head-on, because the only way out is through.

Thanks to our task force for helping me edit this video and make sure I wasn’t too clumsy with the work, especially to Sahitya.

Here are some resources put together by the task force:

If someone is pressuring you:http://rainn.org/get-information/sexual-assault-prevention/avoiding-pressure

Types of assault: http://rainn.org/get-information/types-of-sexual-assault

Find a local crisis center: http://centers.rainn.org/

Online hotline: http://rainn.org/get-help/national-sexual-assault-online-hotline

International resources: http://rainn.org/get-help/sexual-assault-and-rape-international-resources

Emotional abuse: http://www.loveisrespect.org/is-this-abuse/types-of-abuse/what-is-emotional-verbal-abuse

"Digital" abuse: http://www.loveisrespect.org/is-this-abuse/types-of-abuse/what-is-digital-abuse

Warning signs of an abusive relationship: http://www.breakthecycle.org/dating-violence-warning-signs

edit: The links in this were broken but are now fixed; major thanks to those who pointed it out!



Mythursday: Be Aware of the Ides of March

Okay, so:

I know I said I was going to twice weekly updates to cover the story of Theseus, but I was away from home all day Tuesday this week, and I suddenly find myself short on time today, and worse, I find myself forced to make the decision to do something topical rather than the obviously timeless story of Theseus.

Today is March 15, which, as many of you may know, is the Ides of March, the day on which Gaius Julius Caesar was assassinated in 44 BCE. But what ARE the Ides of March? This is what I thought I would answer today. Admittedly, this is not a mythology topic, but Romanhistoryandcultursday isn’t quite as snappy.

Here is what you need to know:

Romans didn’t think of dates the same way we do. They would never say, “Oh, we’ll go down to Brundisium on April 7th. Can’t wait!” Every date was named based on its relation to a particular landmark day in the month. The three landmarks were the Kalends, the Nones, and the Ides.

How were these days determined? Most likely by the lunar cycle. No one can say for sure, but it is incredibly likely that the original Roman calendar was lunar in nature. The Kalends, then, as the first day of every month, were the day of the new moon. (The name Kalends most likely derives from the Greek “kaleo,” meaning to announce, as in “to announce the new moon.” It is, as you may have guessed, the source of our word calendar.)

And so the Nones are the day of the half moon and the Ides the day of the full moon (Macrobius states that the name Ides comes from an Estruscan word meaning to divide, as in to divide the month in half, but more likely it is related to a Sanskrit word meaning to shine, as the full moon). Originally the dates of these days would vary, being determined by someone who is looking super closely at the moon, but eventually they were regulated so that the Nones fell on the fifth of each month (except for March, May, July and October, when they fell on the seventh) and the Ides fell on the thirteenth of each month (except for March, May, July and October, when they fell on the fifteenth).

Why do they change? It has to do with the lunar cycle and how it doesn’t complete itself in full days. Moving the Ides had more or less the same purpose as leap years, except for the moon, rather than the sun. When the Ides move, the Nones move, because the Nones (from the word for “ninth”) are the ninth day before the Ides.

“But wait!” I hear you cry. “I don’t know much about math learnin’, but I know thirteen minus five is eight, not nine!” Yes, well, here is the next trick: Roman counting was inclusive, meaning if you’re counting backwards from today, you include today. So Tuesday would be considered the third day before Thursday, not two days before as we would count it today.

With me so far?

The other thing you have to understand is that Roman dates always looked forward, never backwards, as they were always looking forward to the next phase of the moon (presumably). So you would never say, “Meet me the day after the Ides,” but rather, “Meet me the Nth day before the Kalends.”

So while today is the Ides of March, tomorrow wouldn’t be reckoned the day after the Ides, it instead would be called ante diem XVII Kalendas Apriles, or the seventeenth day before the Kalends of April. (It would not, in fact, be called this, as in the Roman calendar, March did not have thirty-one days, but don’t worry about that part.)

Surprising no one, it is actually a little more complicated than this once you account for intercalary months, but that is something you can look up on your own if you are interested. Needless to say, there is a reason there have been a couple of major calendar reforms since the original Roman calendar.

(One of these major reforms was made by Julius Caesar himself: it’s called the Julian calendar. Since he began it and his heir Augustus finished instituting it, the months of July and August were renamed after those dudes.)

(Also! Ironically, due to the reforms of Julius Caesar himself, we are commemorating his death on the wrong day. While the Ides of March by pre-Julian reckoning would in fact have been March 15, the day on which Caesar was actually assassinated would be March 14 by our current method. THINGS THAT MAKE YOU GO HMMM.)

It is worth noting that the Ides were the days on which teachers were paid each month. Just, you know, just pointing that out.

Also, it’s a good day for stabbing your friend in the groin until he dies, but only if he has just been named dictator-for-life and your other friends really egg you on about it, playing on your sense of honor and the fact that you are the descendant of your culture’s most famous tyrannicide. ONLY IF YOU MEET ALL THOSE CONDITIONS.

Otherwise, don’t stab any groins.

In anticipation of tomorrow, a post outlining the proper celebration of Groin Stabbing Day

(via beatonna)


if you have a pet and i’ve ever visited your house: i’m sorry

(via idowhatiwantspock)




Anonymous asked:

Someone forgets I pay attention, sweetheart. As I've said a few times before, you're going to have to wait until July for anything further. If NZ does extradite Dotcom, they can do the same to me when and if the Feds ask. Too bad they've had to wait two and a half years, kike bitch.



I apologize for the language above, but it is left whole to show a rather ugly point.

So: My ask box is closed now.

And I’m doing something very, very, very rarely do, and my friends have been begging me to do about this whole thing since day one: meet it head on.

The above ask was sent in by my stalker. This is why my ask box remains closed.

Maybe it is time to show what stalking really is and does.

Imagine getting messages, the type of which make the above seem mild and sweet (add in sexual threats, death threats, and vows to be up to this forever), any time you have any ability for anyone to contact you.

Every day. At times multiple times a day, sometimes in a stream of messages that clog your inbox. 

And when you never once address that, they start contacting your friends, your sister, your parents. Your brother in law. Your infant nephew/godson.

Threatens them consistently. Sends them packages. Sends them postcards. Look sup their private info and parade it in front of them.

For 5.5 years.

Things that thus far haven’t helped: An arrest. An international warrant. International attention. Stays in mental health facilities. Nothing deters this behavior.

Stalking is one of the crimes that takes the victim out of the equation, because of how likely it is that being in it exacerbates the situation. And if we do nothing and let the world exist like this, we are enabling a kind of malice that could threaten the very positive and at times powerful ways we exchange ideas and connect to each other.

The Internet is the wild west, and at some point the cavalry’s gotta come in, here. 

The FBI has been amazing but are limited by a foreign nation’s wish to completely ignore a situation that has been proven many times over to exist. 

I can only be so defiant in private while balancing the need for my and my family’s safety.

You may think, “I’ve seen her at LeakyCons, she’s not affected by this at all!” Never make an assumption by the strength someone is able to project that they are unaffected. And never assume that someone who doesn’t give her life over to something negative completely - disappear from the internet, etc - doesn’t just as much peace and justice as those whose lives lose major functions because of this activity. There is sometimes a paternalistic rise in compassion that rises to meet the level to which a person has been affected. If we start judging that way, we forget that no matter the victim and no matter the effect, the crime is the same and it must be stopped.

So there you go. A glimpse into my life. 

If you wish to stand against stalking, please reblog; and as a bonus, please add your own thoughts about the necessity that a country’s law enforcement agency (in this case New Zealand’s) starts to take this seriously.

This may be the most important thing I ever reblog, and I really hope you take the time to read it. 

I’ve known Melissa throughout much of this and I’ve seen the hurt and damage it has caused. I’ve seen her get not one, but HUNDREDS of highly graphic and possibly viable rape and death threats from this stalker. The notes come into every part of Melissa’s life, pretty much every day. They are both electronic and physical. They go to her family. They threaten everything about her life.

The note you see above is NOTHING compared to some that have come in.

I also get notes from this stalker. As I post this, I set myself up to get more. I send them to the FBI, as I have been instructed. The case file grows.

This has gone on for five and a half years.

It’s hard to keep silent while someone goes through this. 

I hope that the stalker actually gets the medical treatment she so desperately needs. She is a danger to herself as much as anything else. I have gotten at least one letter from her that was a detailed suicide threat. She has also cut her own wrists and posted the picture online. She very, very much needs help. 

I hope Melissa gets justice. She needs her life back.

And I hope this helps pave a way for more victims of online stalking to get the help and protection they need.