railenthe: (Default)
The news came at an unexpected time—the date of my rent re-examination last notice.

Last notice? When the miso-glazed fuck were the first ones? I thought, taking the notice out of my door and calling my boss about the unexpected day I'd need off. The date came and went, with a lot of hangups on organization—theirs, not mine. It took an hour of work to do what should have taken maybe twenty minutes.

The verdict: starting in March, I will have a lower rent than I paid all of last year.

But this month I still pay that teeth-itchingly high $200 for this tiny thing, meaning I still have to stretch and scrape and and unashamedly shake the bucket to get by in this economy.

THANKS, TRUMP. I HATE YOU.


Yes that was out of nowhere but it had to be said. It'll probably be said a lot. I'm doing a lot of self-care between my activism to make sure I don't go starkers in this new world of lies, propaganda, and gaslighting. I have an idle game on my phone where I feed and pet adorable hamsters that get into shenanigans. Two of them are lesbians. (Lesbihams?) Two of them seem to be starting a polyamorous thing. (Polyhamorous?)

Some are dignified. Some are...not.

Leslie is usually kinda mellow....and then I put the strawberry daifuku out. #HamsterCollection

A photo posted by Railenthe Zeal (@cyggiestardust) on

(Follow me on Instagram for more hamham shenanigans and my dumb face, btw)

I'm playing a browser game where you raise dragons and humanity is APPARENTLY NO MORE #misandry

When I get meager little tips I splurge on customizations for them and make them pretty. You can have as big or as small a collection of dragons as you want. At the same time this one is inspiring my writing. (there are dragons, but humans also exist but the dragons don't trust the humans, and a dragon falls for a human man because OF COURSE HE DOES and it's totally fluffy romance.)


(this isn't the dragon in the story, it's one of my game dragons, isn't she pretty?)

These tiny little things keep me from ripping my own head off these days. That, and tea. I need more tea. Good tea.
railenthe: (Default)
The recent influx of these so called bathroom bills is just the latest round of body policing and transantagonism that has been going on since the time of the colonizers. People don't understand something, so instead of trying to understand it, they seek to violate, dehumanize, or rationalize away their own internal revulsion of it.

It happened before in every culture that embraces nonbinary identities as something to be acknowledged—but, slowly, we remember our heritage as our spirits wake. And it happens now as our sisthren, brethren, and sibthren come into their identities and walk their truths. At the same time, they—we—live lives like the other people, like those people who do so dislike being called what they are—the cisgender.

And it is with the cisgender that I take my current beef.

(Any comments to the effects of "not all cis" are subject to a metric buttload of side-eye. Only warning.)

It should be no one's business what is in anyone's trousers/kilt/skirt/long dashiki except their significant other and the owner of the parts, yet a mob of legislators wants to control where people can go to the bathroom or change clothes at the gym based on this. Were we to subject the cisgender populations to this treatment it would be called invasive harassment and overturned so quickly that your head would spin.

But since it's "for their protection," this is fine. The double standard is disgusting. It makes me furious. And more than a little sick.

It has also brought back the old chestnut that equates gender to genitalia, and I'm seeing more and more talk about how people would immediately drop a partner—even a long time partner—if their genitals didn't match the perceived or presenting gender. No other justification is even given, just "I thought you had X" and "bye, Felicia."

This revelation makes me sick. Just plain sick. And I don't understand how this line of thinking could be interpreted as anything but transphobic. Putting my cards on the table as nonbinary gets the same reaction. And the reaction is always the same:

"Never mind. Thought you was a woman" and a fast walk away with much dusting of shoulders.

Determining partners on plumbing exclusively is fetishist at best, phobic bull at worst, and needs to stop.

People forget: we are whole persons, with minds and lives and interests and hobbies. Not just sets of genitalia for you to fixate on.
railenthe: (Default)

image

An open question was posed in a group I’m in that (I hope) was honestly confused with why one can now use the word queer, but not nigger. I feel this is important enough to restate here.

Apologies for the Language there. All examples after this will be em-dashed.

Reproduction of my response:

As a black queer person, I am in the camp that you cannot compare the two.

Queer was never used in the old trade as a way to designate an inventory. It never denoted — legally for years — mere fractions of a person. Being queer was never an exclusive reason to stamp out an entire people (as opposed to parts), but as soon as you were labeled n—, it was open season, sometimes literally, as people were once hunted, beaten, lynched. Special laws kept us from advancement. There are literally studies out there that confirm both a subhuman and superhuman bias—we’re thought of as both more dangerous and savage but we’re thought of as literally “magic Negroes” and it even affects the medical treatment we get—I didn’t know that I had a superhuman tolerance for pain, thanks!

N— was used for hundreds of years to call us livestock. We internally reclaimed it as a “screw you” to the past. It was a tool of often fatal oppression. This is why the two words cannot be compared… and also why there’s so much vitriol when one who is not Black uses it. It is not your word.

Minutes later I discovered how deep down the group’s unknowing of the situation ran, as part of the entirely white questioning group asked me “but, what about when it’s used as a term of endearment?”

*Bayonetta!sigh*

“Used as a term of comraderie and endearment, it is a terminal -a, not an -er… and if you are not Black, you shouldn’t be using it. Don’t be Chet Hanks.”

railenthe: (Wat.)

Tomorrow’s breakfast and lunch are both put together. Birthday debauchery day is done, and thanks to BUREAUCRACY! I’m staring at a month sans Link assistance—meaning $35/10 days is the food budget until they fix it. (You don’t live on minimum wage—you scrape.) Luckily the problem is fixable in 2 weeks and I played Stockpile this month, so I have a nice little stash of frozen meat and meat-alikes packed for just such an emergency.

I hear people all the time griping about people gaming the system, and I will admit, the system does have a few huge, glaring flaws—but most of the complaining I hear is ‘Oh, this person bought a bag of chips and a peach soda, they don’t NEED that program’ and not on the real problems, which is the people you catch trafficking their benefits for an equivalent amount of things that aren’t eligible. While for some this can include drugs and alcohol, it just as often involves things like diapers and straight out cash.

I’ve seen it. People I know have been there. (I was always too paranoid to do it, even if it meant I was going without the meds that kept my foot from being one giant blister.) And while there needs to be some reform to the system, griping when a guy buys a Twinkie—wait, those don’t exist…OK, an apple pie—and a Red Bull instead of some celery and a bit of meat? That solves nothing.

What people do not seem to realize is that SNAP benefits—the formal name for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly known as food stamps—are not meant to be the sole source of food. They’re there as much needed assistance—as I said earlier, you don’t live on minimum wage you scrape.

“But Rai!” I hear you say. “Why would a single woman even need such things?”

I’ll tell you!


Congratulations! You’re me on payday! You skip into the building to pick up your paycheck (Let’s call it weird and say that you have the day off for some unknown reason). Timing couldn’t be better, since rent’s also due this week (we’ll assume the beginning of the month). You open the envelope to discover that you have—oh, generous hours—$360 to work with. Sounds nice, right? Keep in mind that this is an atypical check. Maybe the great Dogakittenspacewestern Con was in town.

Got the check still? Good. Let’s run along, shall we, to the bank/grocer. You deposit the whole damn thing, because you’re paranoid about losing cash. All transactions will be on a card now.

  • Your rent’s due! That’s $170. But there’s a $5 service fee for the secured money order. You’re down to $185 now—which hurts, and you try not to think about that as you put the rent money order in your wallet.
  • A text message pops off—your phone bill is due in four minutes (ok, maybe an exaggeration, but it IS due that day). You reply to the message and pay the bill—the dollar sign with wings flies off of your screen as $61 leaves your clutches. You’re down to $124, now.
  • Did you remember the bus pass? If not, now’s the only time you’ve got! For a month, that’s $72 bucks! You now have $52 to work with. Now the only thing left--
  • --is light bill—oh. Wait. You’re four bucks short, actually. If it wasn’t for the fact that you put that $5 from your tips in with the paycheck, you wouldn’t be able to pay that $58 bastard.

You begin the month on a loss, therefore, before you’ve bought so much as a bag of chips and a bottle of vitamin c-fortified punch to keep your blood sugar from dragging its busted-up legs across the ground just to beg you for a morsel.

…you’d be screwed if it wasn’t for that program now.

Next paycheck is more forgiving—you have paid off the biggest bills—but it would’ve been dicey.

Now keep in mind that there are people who want to discontinue this program. All because they got cheesed off that someone bought something that wasn’t leafy green with their benefits/assistance.

Go ahead. Discontinue. Opt out. But what the HELL am I supposed to do?

Don’t pass blanket judgements based on one person. You don’t know what they’re coming from, what they’re trying to do. The guy who just bought Doritos and Monster Zero-Cal Energy Drink on his card might’ve just spent the last of his cash on his meds.

railenthe: (Default)

I occasionally jump in on things that my friends on Facebook have weighed in on. Today, a person was lamenting that their now ex-girlfriend has apparently gone on birth control (referred to hereafter as BC) when she apparently wasn’t before. The original poster seemed to be, to put it bluntly, rather butthurt about the whole deal: he bought into the conservative fallacy of being on BC = promiscuity.

In all likelihood, the odds are she was on it in the first place, so I took a devil’s advocate position on the whole thing, explaining that hormonal contraception is used not only for contraception, but also a form of HRT (Hormone Replacement Therapy) for reproductive issues.

I for one went on birth control around the time right after seeing my now on-again first boyfriend: mostly because it would give me relief from the migraines. (What they don’t tell you about it? YOU GET MOAR BEWBS.) The fact that it gave me free license to jump his bones (didn’t happen, I kept getting cockblocked) was a bonus.

The point is, there’s more than one reason to go on BC. And that decision should be up to the woman in question. NOT a bunch of white-haired old men who think that the body has ways to shut down unwanted pregnancies as in the case of incest and [trigger word redacted]. The fact is, most of the government trying to regulate what we do to our bodies are men—who therefore have a barely-working knowledge of how making babies work in the first place—Todd Akin, anybody?—and don’t seem to bother with science at all. Look at the conservatives’ positions on the subject, and you see a lot of DIVINE VIRTUE and GOD’S WILL and ABOMINATION AGAINST NATURE and AGAINST THE HOLY WORD!

You don’t see…what’s it called—oh, right. SCIENCE. You don’t see the medical experts’ views. You don’t see doctors. You don’t see internists. YOU DON’T SEE WOMEN. Or at least, you don’t see women when you’re not looking inside of Mitt Romney’s infamous binders. Pretty much, the one segment of the population that has anything to do with this whole thing is being silenced. The right to do to our bodies what we want to do, even in cases of improvement of our own health, we’re stuck under the thumb of conservative pols and the damn Church.

And I’m not comfortable with a bunch of old men who won’t let girls join their club trying to tell me what to do with my own huevos internales at every chance they get.

An ancient institution should not be taking the place of a trained medical professional. Church, I don’t turn around and tell you how to massage your prostates. Don’t tell me how to make my ovaries behave, and DON’T go around sticking lighted wands all up in the Promised Land just because you think that a cluster of cells that has not yet even developed a rudimentary nervous system should have sole control over what I do.

That isn’t pro-life. That’s pro-birth. After the birth, where are these people? “Oh, we’re not going to provide assistance to you, you should have known better than to get pregnant in the first place. Oh, and spermicides and condoms and stuff like that is also the devil so no you can’t have it unless you want to go to hell and you don’t want that now do you, silly woman?”

We’re not baby machines. Stop treating us like baby machines. Get out of our laws. For fuck’s sake, start treating women like PEOPLE, you old dustbags. Until then, I’ll just travel about until I can get the medical help I need for my hormonal issue.

railenthe: (OMGyay)

I’ll say it right now: I enjoyed watching them entirely too much. Though I’ve almost certainly made up my mind for voting this November, I do like to hear from all of the candidates and sides to make sure that I am making the right decision. There is of course that whole “oh woo woo woo what difference can one person make in the elections woo woo woo” but I try not to listen to that—seeing as if I do that all of the time I’d never do anything at all.

 

The Biden-Ryan Showdown certainly jossed my feelings that Biden is just sort of noise that shows up once in a while to make a goofy fucked-up observation on an open mic. He was solid in his performance tonight. Biden came out swinging, and he didn’t pull any of his punches. Even his reactions were candid.

 

He very  nearly facepalmed at one of Paul Ryan’s statements. It was what they in the business call Blatant Lies™ and there wasn’t much that Joey-B could do but just sort of laugh it off. And he did. A lot. I get the feeling it was because it was a bit more ethical than just going, “You are so full of horseshit.”

 

Man, it was crazy. It was like a fencing match.

railenthe: (Wat.)

Recently the bill that improves the nutrition, and limits the calories of, school lunches, was put into effect. As a result, the maximum caloric load for the public school lunch is about 800 calories, maximum. The intent is to combat obesity by balancing their dietary intakes.

Students were not amused by this. The largest complaint is that they’re still hungry after eating their plates. What do they do in reaction?

They throw away the food in protest and make a video on Youtube that dramatizes just how hungry they are.

O )

railenthe: (Default)
http://content.usatoday.com/communities/ondeadline/post/2012/07/belarus-leaders-admits-air-invasion-by-teddy-bears/1#.UBSd7Ls1hTI

Seriously—cutest airstrike in the history of ever.

Free speech is something we take for granted in the US. So hearing about something like this gets me to thinking about how we have it here, and about how other nations have it. And specifically this…I’m not sure how they came up with this idea, but if their aim was to get the international community to squee with delight, I consider this a win.

This message brought to you by LjBeetle. ^_^

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