feuervogel: photo of the statue of Victory and her chariot on the Brandenburg Gate (Default)
Yesterday it was 78, sunny, and humid. Today it's 60 and raining.

I went to the Festival of Legends, a first-year sort of Renaissance festival a couple friends were running. We helped run the table for ConTemporal and get the word out. I tried some archery, which is when I burned myself. It was a lot harder than middle school, because the woman who owned the bow is kind of a badass and has a 45# longbow. Aside from being really heavy pull, it's a right-handed bow, but I shoot left-handed (I think?) I could pull it easier with my left hand than my right, and I'm right-handed.

I've discovered a new thing I can't really do anymore: be outside in hot, humid weather, unless I hydrate a LOT first. After lunch, I felt really sick, but after I sipped enough gatorade and put some ice on my head, I felt well enough to chug the gatorade.

Stupid body.

So we came home and watched Legend of Korra (free on nick.com), crashed the playstation trying to watch Mouretsu Pirates on crunchyroll and pirated it instead, ditto Space Brothers. I have Thoughts on these shows:

Korra is awesome and I can't wait to see what happens (also awkward firebender with Jin Kazama's eyebrows).

Mouretsu Pirates is about grrl power and young women supporting each other rather than being catty bitches and saying shit like "I don't get along with girls, so I only have male friends." (I've heard that from multiple women I'm (apparently not? since I'm a girl who they don't get along with, remember?) friends with. Or maybe I don't count as a girl, whatever.) Also, it's a high school show with NO panty shots, no faceplants into titties, no massively overdeveloped breasts on 13-year-old girls, and, really, nary a boy in sight (except the crew of the pirate ship, who hardly count). And they had a perfect opportunity for a panty shot in 0g and they DIDN'T USE IT. It gets my love just for that.

Sakamichi no Apollon/Kids on the Slope looks interesting, even if it seems like it's just about some high school kids and jazz.

Space Brothers could really do without all the male horndog shit. If you wanted to know what you have to do to become an astronaut at JAXA, watch this show.
feuervogel: photo of the statue of Victory and her chariot on the Brandenburg Gate (Default)
I just realized that pretty much all I've been posting lately is word counts. But I've been spending most of my days either farting around on facebook games or writing and evenings reading while Ben plays video games.

I finally made it through my re-read of the Foreigner series and first read of the 4th trilogy in that (book 12 is finally out in paperback). That's 4500+ pages. Then I read Devil's Cub by Georgette Heyer, and I'm working on Among Others by Jo Walton, which was a birthday present. I've also read the Hunger Games trilogy (on my e-reader).

The Foreigner series is very dense politics, with aliens who resemble humans but have very different psychology. The fourth trilogy spends some POV time with young Cajeiri, not just Bren. That lets you get a little more insight into atevi psychology than Bren has. There's a fifth trilogy in the works; I wonder if that'll be the last. I also wonder if DAW will ever authorize ebook versions. Fifteen books take up a lot of shelf space!

Devil's Cub is a Heyer Regency. The male lead is a rake with a violent temper (but he adores his mother, who also has a bit of a temper). The female lead is a no-nonsense woman. I was disinclined to like the male lead from the beginning, but he got a little better. Even if the horrid gender norms of the early 1800s are horrid. It's apparently normal for men to discipline their wives with spankings as if they're children! Gag.

I think I'd enjoy Among Others better if I understood more than three or four of the references the narrator makes to books she's read. Of the books/authors name-dropped, I've read Tolkien and LeGuin. No Heinlein, Delany, etc. Example sentence (paraphrased): "Now I understand what Smith meant when he told Jones what he did." That means NOTHING to me. Aside from the gratuitous NERD CHILDHOOD NOSTALGIA (which I don't have, not having had a Proper Nerd Childhood myself), it's a good story.

Final Fantasy XIII-2 is sheer and utter nonsense. Like, completely illogical nonsense with a fresh coat of nonsense on top. It's very pretty, and the battle system is almost the same as in XIII, but good god DAMN the plot makes no sense. "If you change the future, you change the past." NO. That's not how time travel works.

I can't wait to see Legend of Korra. Holy shit. I am all over that show. I watched the preview of the first two episodes online yesterday, and I was impressed. It looks like there's going to be a good amount of depth again. A:TLA was a show for 11-year-olds about genocide and imperialism. Korra looks like it's going to be a show for 16-year-olds about classism and privilege. I'm looking forward to it!
feuervogel: (asian aang)
It opens this weekend. Much has been said around the web, about the whitewashing of the characters and the changes they've made to the story.

Supporting this film, by giving the studios money when you go see it, will only encourage them to continue making racist casting decisions. (Did you know that 83% of Paramount's planned films for this decade have white, male leads?)

I'll leave you with a comic by Gene Luen Yang, author of American Born Chinese, on why he won't be watching the movie.

(Hint: it has to do with the casting call for Aang's role: "12-15, male, Caucasian or any other ethnicity." If you don't see how this wording expresses a preference for a white actor, there's little I can do to convince you. But go read the extensive information at Racebending.com anyway.)
feuervogel: (godless liberal etc)
I wrote this in response to a comment left on the LJ version of "I can do things," and I thought it was worth putting in its own post. I've added some clarifications and expansions in italics.

Commenter:
I don't understand this part... Are you trying to determine for yourself that your life is interesting despite being a woman? Or just putting together a case to debunk the notion that women generally have less interesting lives than men?

If it helps either way, I'm a dude and my life is boring ass. I can list ten women easily whose lives are more interesting than mine and whom I envy. You would be on that list.


Neither, and you've got the wrong meaning for interesting. I'm not talking "interesting times" or "climbing K2" but the things which society values, and "things women do" aren't on that list. (Though thank you for the compliment!)

It's why Harry Potter is about Harry Potter and his friends Ron and Hermione, rather than Hermione Potter, the Girl Who Lived, and her friends Ginny and Harry. (And why I couldn't think of another Gryffindor girl in the trio's year.) It's why 90% of movies (or more) have male leads (and why movies starring women are "chick flicks.")

It's why having Toph and Katara being lead roles was so important: aside from their being brownof color, (the importance of which I don't wish to minimize, because it's very important, but it's outside the scope of this mini essay) they were both female characters. It showed girls (and boys) that girls can kick ass, too. That there's more to female characters than sidekick or romantic interest. Even Azula was an amazing character. ATLA has five female characters, who each have personal goals and personalities that don't revolve around getting a boyfriend. That's so incredibly rare. (One could argue the Mai-Zuko plotline, or the Katara-Aang, or any of Katara's crushes, really, but let's be honest here: it's part of being a teenager, which these kids are. Katara's main goal is not to marry Aang; it's to stop the Fire Lord from taking over the world, with a side order of revenge.)

These are things which nobody explicitly says, except when they do. "Girl stuff" is icky and bad. Boys are told "don't play with girl toys," for example. Even without that explicitness, when girls grow up in a society that favors male lead characters, that doesn't put female characters in lead roles in books or movies because boys won't watch them; when girls see themselves relegated to the sidelines -- if they're visible at all -- in favor of boys' stories, we learn that we're less important. That our stories are less important. That we don't matter.

And that's why I'm doing this: to teach myself that, yes, dammit, women's stories matter. MY story matters. And to provide an example, if anyone finds it.
feuervogel: (zuko dancing dragon)
So, at the san shou workshop, there was this one guy, E, who has a lot of jobs (teaching middle school, personal trainer, kung fu instructor, chef; he was also a cook in the Air Force for a while). During one of our breaks on Sunday, he was practicing one of his other forms. I watched it and thought, "hmm, I bet he's doing praying mantis."

Kathleen asked, when he finished, "What style was that?" He answered, "Mantis style."

How did I know that? Avatar. Toph's style of earthbending is based on a praying mantis style. (Hers is special; regular earthbending is based in hung gar.)

While waterbending is based on taiji, the style I do is a little closer to shaolin (firebending). Zhang San Feng (the inventor of taiji, according to tradition) studied shaolin, see, and the Chen style is closer to the source, in a way. I can't remember what I did with my notes for red sash about the history of Master Jou's form. I hope I stuck them in the book.

I put too much Chen into my weapons forms. Though really, Chen dao ought to have more Chen in it. (By which I mean chansijin, mostly. I noticed myself putting chansi in the bow of sanshou. I need to find the chansi in Chen dao. More practice!)

Right, then. I need to buy coffee (there was a NO COFFEE EMERGENCY in the house this morning) and see if the wood-handled crochet hooks have come in at the yarn shop yet. I want to get a walk in, probably after lunch, then another couple hours of editing. I'm going out to dinner tonight. *g*
feuervogel: (asian aang)
(I know, quelle surprise!)

Several someones wrote to her about the casting in live-action Avatar, and she put it on her blog!
feuervogel: (asian aang)
(I know, quelle surprise!)

Several someones wrote to her about the casting in live-action Avatar, and she put it on her blog!
feuervogel: (non-AZN zuko?)
http://aang-aint-white.livejournal.com/4398.html

(Share with your friends, share on twitter with #aangaintwhite . Spread the word!)

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