ishyface: ('cause today i found my friends)
Last night Amy and I went out to dinner with her mum, her ex-stepfather, and her stepbrothers. It was going quite well overall- there was wine and pasta and at one point the stepbrothers were yelling about their sister, who lives in Ottawa and seems to be universally hated, and it's always interesting to get a sudden window into other people's family drama- and then I had a conversation I've had more times than is strictly necessary. Which is to say, at all.

One of her stepbrothers was cold, and asked if anyone had a jacket he could borrow. I wasn't cold, and he looked kind of sad and puppylike, so I gave him mine. It's a green jacket with a yellow smiley face button on the lapel. He noticed it after a few minutes and asked- slurring a little because we were most of the way through a bottle at that point- what it was.

"It's a smiley face button," I said.

He shook his head. "It should be an anti-immigration button," he said.

Please note: we were not talking about immigration. We had not been talking about immigration the whole evening. As I recall, the last thing this gentleman and I had actually spoken about was his partner, Steven, and how they might be breaking up soon. So I suppose immigration was just on his mind, and he wanted to have a good long gumflap about how much he didn't like it. Or something.

I said, "My mother's an immigrant."

Now, in this conversation, saying that a person close to you (a family member or spouse for preference, although sometimes a close friend or coworker is good enough) is an immigrant has one of two results. Either 1) the person gets very embarrassed and backtracks, often naming all the perfectly lovely people they know who are immigrants, or 2) they ask where exactly the person is from. Which this gentleman did.

"The UK," I replied.

The gentleman made a face I've seen a fair few times during this conversation. When I tell people that my mother is an immigrant, they tend to assume I mean that she is not white, because that is the picture they have filed inside their head under "immigrant." An immigrant is a person of colour, or at least a delightfully "ethnic" shade of white. (Like a kooky Greek, maybe, or a fiery Italian.) The face is a sort of relieved grimace, an oh-thank-God-I-thought-you-might-be-one-of-them expression.

"Oh, well, that's different," he said. "That's not the kind of immigration I was talking about."

You always know the kind of immigration they're talking about. Always. But I bit anyway.

"What kind of immigration were you talking about?" I asked.

He waved his hands expressively. "You know," he said. "Terrorists!"

I shut the conversation down after that.
ishyface: (*beam*)
From Little Brother, in reference to the impending Animal Farm musical:

"All musicals are equal, but some musicals are more equal than others."

He is a national gd treasure.
ishyface: (meet me at the cemetry gates)
Day 01 → Your favorite song
Day 02 → Your favorite movie
Day 03 → Your favorite television programme
Day 04 → Your favorite book
Day 05 → Your favorite quote

Day 06 → Whatever tickles your fancy
Day 07 → A photo that makes you happy
Day 08 → A photo that makes you angry/sad
Day 09 → A photo you took
Day 10 → A photo of you taken over ten years ago
Day 11 → A photo of you taken recently
Day 12 → Whatever tickles your fancy
Day 13 → A fictional book
Day 14 → A non-fictional book
Day 15 → A fanfic
Day 16 → A song that makes you cry (or nearly)
Day 17 → An art piece (painting, drawing, sculpture, etc.)
Day 18 → Whatever tickles your fancy
Day 19 → A talent of yours
Day 20 → A hobby of yours
Day 21 → A recipe
Day 22 → A website
Day 23 → A YouTube video

Day 24 → Whatever tickles your fancy
Day 25 → Your day, in great detail
Day 26 → Your week, in great detail

Day 27 → This month, in great detail
Day 28 → This year, in great detail
Day 29 → Hopes, dreams and plans for the next 365 days
Day 30 → Whatever tickles your fancy

You know, I don't remember much of this past month or so. I know I've been working. I know I've been going places and doing things. I know I dyed my hair blue again. I know my sister moved to Newfoundland with her boyfriend. I know I read some books and some of them were good. I rode the bus a lot. I learned how to make honey cake. I saw Sex and the City 2 (without having seen the show or the first movie) and was duly horrified. I got a new tattoo. I started thinking about grad school. I wrote stuff. I reread the perks of being a wallflower. I reread Boy Meets Boy. I ate cake made with expired eggs. I played Sociables. I played Scrabble. I played at being a grownup and then ruined it all by sticking safety pins in my ears in a fit of nostalgia.

That's all, really.

Oh! And I introduced Little Brother to the Tim Gunn version of "Closer."

He appreciated it.
ishyface: (*beam*)
Tonight I made Little Brother watch E.T., because somehow he managed to make it to age thirteen (nearly fourteen!) without seeing it even once. I don't know how that happened. Clearly I fail as a mentor.

E.T. is something I'm slightly embarrassed to admit to getting emotional about, because it's about a white suburban kid who befriends a cuddly alien and that is pretty uncool! But I tear up every time I watch it anyway, because I am a sucker for stories in which Lonely, Alienated Children Befriend Strange Creatures.* Elliott is the first movie character I ever remember really relating to, and I really wanted an E.T. when I was little. Except one that looked a little less weird and ugly and didn't make so many fucked up noises. I also wanted a bike with a basket on the front like Elliott's with which to transport said E.T., and a really huge closet to store it in so my mother wouldn't find out about it. I didn't get any of those, not even the bike with the basket, but it was nice to dream.

Anyway, I think the movie would have gone better for LB if he hadn't just watched the video for "Telephone" fifty bajillion times in a row. He ended up giggling and singing to himself every time E.T. said he was going to phone home and, during the climactic scene in which E.T. goes back onto the spaceship, wondered aloud if Lady Gaga was going to be in there.

Kids these days.

Oh, speaking of Lady Gaga, would you like to hear about how she and Beyonce totally saved my life on Friday? You probably don't, which is why I put it under a cut! )

The night after Lady Gaga and Beyonce saved my life, I went to a costume party. I was waffling over what I wanted to be for a while- I've already been a riot grrrl, a zombie Catholic schoolboy, Daria Morgendorfer, and Donnie Darko, so I was starting to run out of ideas. And then I watched Velvet Goldmine twice in one week and started listening to Without You I'm Nothing again and, well, this happened. )

Things currently making my life:

The Iggy Pop/Gerard Way interview, still. Even though it is mostly a back-and-forth consisting of "You're GREAT, Iggy!" "No, YOU'RE great, Gerard!" "Oh, know what else is great? Green Day!" "And golf!" "And babies!" "Gosh, everything is so great." "Just like us." "Yeah."

This nostalgic post about the early days of the Internets. I find it difficult to picture a world without lolcats. I mean, obviously I know it existed, I was ALIVE, but still. Weird.

Health care! Granted, I'm Canadian so I already had it, but still, hurrah. (The Stupak Amendment is still getting me down, though.)

This. Yes. A thousand times yes.

Baby otters.

... my mother just poked her head into my bedroom to inform me that she stole a turkey. I think the poor woman may finally be cracking under the stress.

* The Iron Giant is also something I get absurdly teary over. Actually, E.T. and The Iron Giant are pretty much the same story, except one has kids riding bicycles into the moon and the other one has, um, atomic bombs. I think The Iron Giant is a better story overall, but I don't remember watching it in a pair of footie pajamas so E.T. has the upper hand when it comes to turnin' on the waterworks.

** His parents are Ukrainian-Canadian (hence the single-vowel name), he was raised partly in London, and he spent a good lot of his college years in Prague. Try to imagine what that sounds like. Then add a drawl, expressive hand gestures, a look of vague disdain, and a little black cap. Yep. TERRIFYING.

*** No, really, that's how I said it.
ishyface: (*beam*)
1) [ profile] redheaded_itch is here! She is currently on a beach taking pictures of ~nature. I am currently inside sitting at my kitchen table because I am a fascist who hates the beach.

2) I got a haircut on Friday. It's pretty fab. )

3) Does anyone else on the flist read Tiger Beatdown? Because if you don't you definitely should. It is both hilarious and insightful and, dammit, there aren't enough funny feminist blogs out there. One of my favourite posts: Shut Up, Cunt! The Cultural Logic Of 97th-Wave Feminist Band Millionaires.

4) "What A Catch, Donnie" made me tear up hardcore. ;_______; GET ON THE LIFEBOAT PETER WENTZ YOU ARE NOT EDWARD J. SMITH.

5) I just tried to eat a mini Reese's cup without taking the tinfoil off. Legally I am considered a responsible adult and that scares me more than I can ever say.
ishyface: (Default)
When my little sister heard about the upcoming FOBlink-182 tourvaganza, she got very big-eyed and said:

"I want to go to that concert. More than anything in the world."

"Huh," I said, intrigued. "Do you want it even more than, say, world peace?"

She nodded solemnly.

"You do know that makes you a bad person, right?" I asked.

"No!" she replied, shaking her head. "Because that concert will make world peace happen."

I love you, Little Sister.

Guyssssss it was so WARM today! So warm there were kids out playing on the street all day! So warm I got to lie out on my back deck and absorb the sunshine like a furry purry kitty! So warm I didn't even put on socks! (I pretty much always wear socks- brightly-patterned knee socks, for preference- so this is a big deal.) I've got my window wide open and I can hear frogs somewhere out there and it is SUMMER FUCK YEAH FINALLY. \o/

I mean, it snowed again a few days ago, but whatever. SUMMER.

I have been feeling kind of ridiculously optimistic about things lately. This is partially due to FUCK YEAH SUMMER, but also because I have decided to spend this summer Being Productive, and so far I'm doing pretty well! I've been writing and practicing bass and working like a motherfucker and it feels really good to be busy because I think I've been kind of doing nothing for a while. Even during the school year.

I've also been reading a lot, which I choose to count as Being Productive because, um, reading is good for the brainmeats? I dunno. Here are some of the books I've read, complete with pocket-sized reviews!

Books, books, books. )

I'm currently reading Out by Natsuo Kirino (delightfully creepy and full of social commentary) and The Lady Elizabeth by Alison Weir (interesting, but it's really easy to tell she usually writes nonfiction- her style is kind of clumsy and she can never seem to decide whose head she wants to be in). Books are fab.
ishyface: (Default)
MY LITTLE BROTHER IS THIRTEEN TODAY. THIRTEEN. THIRTIZZLE!!!!!!! We celebrated by eating lunch in a vegan restaurant and going to the Clay Cafe, because he is a lesbian. (We also watched 28 Days Later and will be watching either 28 Weeks Later or the third season of Buffy later tonight. Little Brother likes his birthdays like he likes his women: undead and full of feminism.) I got him a Freddie Mercury action figure and two Nightmare Before Christmas pins. I also gave him a piggyback downtown, because we are both ridic.

Mannnnn, I remember when he was a tiny wee wrinkly baby and I brought him in for show and tell because he was the first brother I ever had! I was excited about having a brother back then and I'm still excited now. Happy birthday, honeybee. ♥

(Oh, yeah, and that noise you hear? That's just bandom being better than any other fandom ever.)
ishyface: (Default)
The problem with having an overactive imagination is that you never know when it's going to get away from you.

Last night I was just about ready to go to bed when I clicked on an article about alien abduction. This was a stupid move on my part, since being abducted by aliens has been my biggest irrational fear since I was six. (That was when I woke up in the middle of the night and thought I saw an alien standing over my grandmother's bed.) I was up alone at this point, one light on in the whole house, and by the time I closed my laptop I was afraid to go to sleep.

I was sitting by the window and my brain was on overdrive, making up all these ridiculous scenarios and telling me that there could TOTALLY be aliens right outside, standing on the lawn! And they could definitely be down the hall, you never know, so better not go there! And hey, maybe they're under the couch as well, just waiting to grab you by the ankles! And since they're aliens and all and aliens can totally turn invisible, maybe there are THOUSANDS OF THEM STANDING RIGHT IN FRONT OF YOU.

It took a while for me to stop thinking about that, because what's more terrifying than being potentially surrounded by invisible alien abductors?*

And then when I was in the bathroom brushing my teeth I thought what if there's one standing behind me? So of course I turned around and looked, and of course there wasn't anything there, but then I remembered that scene in The Grudge when that little girl was standing behind someone and just moved whenever they tried to look at her and the moral of the story is you're never too old to sleep with your bedside light on. :(((

I figured I'd have nightmares, and I did, but they were about my ex instead of aliens. Go figure.

In happier news, I spent most of this morning watching Queer As Folk my with little brother and sister (who were home "sick"). Little Brother likes Emmett the best.

* Well, probably a lot of things. IT WAS REALLY DARK OKAY.
ishyface: (oh my god!)
Little Brother: *hums*
Ish: What are you humming, dude?
Little Brother: The Hi Ho song! Or the, um, Hi Lady of the Evening song.
Ish: ... *dies laughing*
Little Brother: What? I'm just trying to be politically correct!
ishyface: (*beam*)
Today when I got off the bus the sun was bright and golden and "Here Comes The Sun" came on my headphones and it smelled like spring and little clouds and I danced uphill through the snow.

And then when I got through the door my little brother enlightened me with this very important fact: "There are no angry lesbians, just happy lesbians and lesbians who like cars a lot."

And now I have tea.

Today passes with flying colours.
ishyface: (*beam*)
My little brother is growing out his hair and wearing purple skinny jeans because he refuses to conform to gender stereotypes. (His words.)

Lyn-Z is in the "Desolation Row" video.

The WTF blanket.

Gerard Way exists and is a hand-talker.

Johanna Sigurdardottir, named as Iceland's prime minister on Sunday, is the first openly lesbian head of government in Europe, if not the world - at least in modern times.

My little sister is encouraging me to recast Buffy the Vampire Slayer with William Beckett as Buffy and Guy Ripley as Spike.
ishyface: (*beam*)
- Got to wear a lovely paper hat.

- Had deep, meaningful discussions with family by candlelight about mortality and getting old and new beginnings and other shit. May have teared up at one point. Don't tell.

- Watched three movies: Wall-E (whee!), Life As A House (not as good as I thought it was when I was fourteen!), and Rockadoodle (not as good as I thought it was when I was four!).

- Drank. Drank kind of a lot.

- Got this. )

And now I've got to go get ready for our Reluctant Extended Family Boxing Day Fiesta. Plans are in the works to make my aunt Anne-Marie storm out in a huff (or faint, we're not sure which is the more likely reaction) by toasting my fifteen-year-old sister's unborn child and fervently praying that she'll carry to term "this time." Please note that this was my mother's idea, and that said sister is all for it.

Happy holidays. Have a Wentzling (which does not have wings, horns, OR a tail and thus disappoints me but is still freakin' adorable).
ishyface: (Default)
Little Sister, Little Brother, and I were watching Cribs earlier today. (A fact of which I am not proud, but sometimes I get bored and the TV's just right there.) It was the episode that started with Pete Wentz showing people his house, and his dog, and his cars, and his dog, and his fake snow, and has he mentioned he's got a dog? Little Sister started doing impressions of him towards the end.

Little Sister, Wentzvoicing: Bye, MTV! You've seen my house, my dolls, my hoodies-
Little Brother, Wentzvoicing: My penis.

He then hastened to assure us both that he had not, in fact, seen Pete Wentz's penis. (I offered to show him. He declined.) And now he's talking about Flight of the Conchords.

ishyface: (*beam*)
At dinner tonight we were talking about sexuality- queerness, specifically- and my dad was actually contributing to the conversation. This is really rare for him. He's not the most prejudiced person I've ever met, but he's always been pretty... tetchy on the subject, for reasons which are partly unknown, partly tied up in his very Catholic upbringing, and partly due to him wanting very much to be a Manly Man. Tonight, however, he was positively verbose. He was talking very earnestly about how using the word "gay" as a pejorative is wrong and about how he thought he might be gay when he was a teenager and I looked at him and felt very, very proud, because it was only a few years ago that I came out to him and my mother and he told me it was a phase and that queer folks made him uncomfortable and he's come so far since then.

And then he turned to me and asked, very slowly:

"So, uh... when a gay person gives another gay person a present... what does that mean?"

I'm not sure what's better, the fact that he thinks gay people giving each other presents has some kind of dire significance on the level of the rites of the Freemasons or the fact that he thinks I'd know.
ishyface: (oh my god!)
This is why I love hanging out with my little sister.

Ish: *reads* Wow, Stephenie Meyer's idea of what's sexy and dangerous is fucking warped. This vampire kid is hot because he drives a Volvo! And wears white turtlenecks!
Little Sister: *confused face* But I thought... don't only girls have Volvos?
Ish: *stares*
Little Sister: ... :D?
Ish: "Volvo," Stephanie, not "vulva."
Little Sister: Ohhhh. I thought they were the same thing!

God help that kid if she ever tries to buy a car. ♥
ishyface: (*beam*)
From [ profile] montrealais: Margaret Atwood is cranky and fabulous.

What's the idea here? That arts jobs should not exist because artists are naughty and might not vote for Mr. Harper? That Canadians ought not to make money from the wicked arts, but only from virtuous oil? That artists don't all live in one constituency, so who cares? Or is it that the majority of those arts jobs are located in Ontario and Quebec, and Mr. Harper is peeved at those provinces, and wants to increase his ongoing gutting of Ontario - $20-billion a year of Ontario taxpayers' money going out, a dribble grudgingly allowed back in - and spank Quebec for being so disobedient as not to appreciate his magnificence? He likes punishing, so maybe the arts-squashing is part of that: Whack the Heartland.

Or is it even worse? Every budding dictatorship begins by muzzling the artists, because they're a mouthy lot and they don't line up and salute very easily. Of course, you can always get some tame artists to design the uniforms and flags and the documentary about you, and so forth - the only kind of art you might need - but individual voices must be silenced, because there shall be only One Voice: Our Master's Voice. Maybe that's why Mr. Harper began by shutting down funding for our artists abroad. He didn't like the competition for media space.


(Just kidding, never stop.)

I just finished a book by Patrick O'Leary called The Gift, and it was the most intense, engrossing read I've had in a long while. It's kind of a fantasy, but it's not like any other fantasy I've read- sad and sharp and funny and horrifying and beautiful and painful, like all the best fairy tales distilled. It's a book about stories, and the danger of power, and the redemption of love. The kind of book that makes you feel refreshed and excited just because it exists. I'm glad I read it.

(Especially after A Song For Arbonne. I have never eyerolled so hard at a book before. Women are tender delicate nurturing moonbeams who must gentle their menfolk! You can tell that evil people are evil because they enjoy oral sex! "AMUSING" IS THE ONLY ADJECTIVE IN THE WORLD! Fuck you, Guy Gavriel Kay. Fuck. You.)

I discovered yesterday that Patrick Wolf's The Magic Position is the best album to listen to at night on the bus, when it's starting to rain and the streetlights have just turned on. (That sounds laughably specific, I know, but it's not really.)

Then, when I got home, I discovered this present from my mother on my bed:


Gosh, Mum, what are you trying to say exactly? YOU ARE BEING TOO SUBTLE. I DON'T UNDERSTAND.
ishyface: (Default)
I got a new hat! )

Today we had a Family Adventure downtown, in which Mum dragged us into every gift shop in the greater St. John's area and I learned how to use chopsticks. Kind of. We also saw an extraordinary number of tiiiiiiiiny emo kids (something like thirty or forty) just kind of... hanging around. In the same spot. Doing nothing but refusing to make eye contact and scuffing their shoes. They were the PRECIOUSEST and I wanted to smish all their faces. Except they maybe would not have appreciated that.

And my brother got a thumb piano. He's been playing that five-note song from Close Encounters of the Third Kind all afternoon. DOO DOO DOO... DOO... DOOOOOOO.

I heard "Check Yes, Juliet" on the radio for the first time this morning.

I've been planning out this year's NaNoWriMo over the past couple of days. It involves, as I've informed [ profile] uncommon_crow, inter-dimensional travel, a gender-nonspecific seer from Pluto, heroes, a book with everything in it, cats, crows, adoption, adventure, thieves, a ten-thousand-year-old trapped in a six-year-old's body, a monster chained up in the stars, and the head of Orpheus, and I'm really looking forward to it. (Especially the parts that involve rhyming couplets.) Another thing I'm looking forward to: the Pagan Society meeting on Wednesday! We're going to make personal Tarot cards. Woo.

Found in last week's Moral Philosophy notes: Knowing what it means to being human is bound up in knowing the difference between good and evil.

ETA: Jesse, have you seen this?

Never has :D: been so appropriate an emoticon.
ishyface: (fuck you)
My favourite uncle just tried to talk to me about how the women's movement contributed to the downfall of the white race. Because ladies are too busy "burning their bras" to pump out MOAR WHITE BABIES, and now? NOW there are BROWN PEOPLE EVERYWHERE.

I had to force myself to stay calm and say, as pleasantly as possible, "Well, I don't think the 'disappearance' of the white race is such a tragedy- there are too many people on the planet anyway." And then I locked myself in my room and started listening to the Manic Street Preachers so I wouldn't start screaming.


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