glass_icarus: (alek wek)
I just picked five organizations to donate to! That was much more fun and interesting (and felt way more worthwhile) than trying to figure out how stocks work as my dad has been pushing me to do, lol.

Every day is a great day to put The ArchAndroid on repeat, but today it feels especially relevant. Thank you, universe, for the gift that is Janelle Monae.

... & now I need to finish some readings before road tripping off to my marathon dance party. I hope you do something to restore your energy this weekend too! ♥

verklempt

Jan. 19th, 2017 09:49 pm
glass_icarus: (obama glee)
My ability to read serious political news remains low, especially now I've started reading for my area exams, but these two things made me tear up.
Obama's goodbye letter
RESISTANCE POSTERS OF AMAZING (including some made by the artist of Obama's "Hope" poster)

I'll be marathon-dancing off my Trumperdink feels this weekend. This era is ending; all that's left is to center and sustain.
glass_icarus: (Default)
To Obama With Love, and Hate, and Desperation is a somewhat questionable title but a really interesting read. I had never thought about the doings in the White House mailroom before, but reading this, I think it's going to be one of many legacies that I'll be sad to see come to an end.
glass_icarus: (saiyuki: makai tenjou)
Finished an old Dragon Age: Origins game yesterday, which is the first one where I persuaded my way into Cousland/Alistair royal power couple, almost entirely because I wanted to see Alistair's script at the beginning of Awakening if you're married and queen. Despite my completist urges about this game (ALL the origin stories! ALL the character types! ALL the fighting styles!), there are still a number of narrative choices I have trouble making because a) I can't turn my personal ethics off long enough to play through the resulting consequences, and b) I can't bring my character to act like a complete asshole. (Yes it's a game universe, but what's the point of spending so much time on a character that I don't even like?)

... Am I the only one who has these problems? *g*
glass_icarus: (saving face: ma)
Still can't bring myself to watch President Obama's farewell speech, though I saw clips of him talking about Michelle (with Malia trying to keep it together) making the rounds on youtube. And I did watch the Hamilton crew's White House performance of One Last Time, which, augh, is managing to give me feels even without having watched/listened to Hamilton.

Whatever else there is to say about President Obama- and there's a lot- he knows how to carry hope, and grace, and love.
glass_icarus: (sott: euphemism)
[personal profile] littlebutfierce asked about my adventures with French, which I have to say are not exactly... progressing, lol. I spend most of my time in my monolingual school bubble, which means I'm not used to switching gears outside it, which restricts my listening comprehension and vocab more than they otherwise would be (judging by my experiences in Chinese-speaking environments). My ability to parse the Quebec accent is maybe marginally better when my brain flips the switch, but I still can't understand most of what dance-buddy S is saying. To be fair, he's from rural Quebec, so his accent is more pronounced than most other people's I've encountered. I don't think my reading comprehension has deteriorated super badly, as I've had no trouble grading assignments written in French or reading emails or fb group messages with Francophone friends. Text is more forgiving for me, in French- I'm better at working out meanings through context through reading than listening. It's completely different than Chinese, in that sense, where illiteracy means I'm always working at comprehension the other way around.

In terms of French news/podcast-type listening sources, my adventures are basically non-ventures, alas. I've never found a good way to integrate those into my daily routine, and I try to avoid youtube spiraling for reasons of productivity, but music seems like it would be more promising? I'd appreciate any song/artist recs people have!
glass_icarus: (partners)
Went to a dance social last night for the first time in... about 2 months? It was a great party and I spent a long time dancing with practice-partner S (we've been on practice-hiatus for a few months, but we tentatively agreed to start again :D), as well as a couple of people visiting from elsewhere in Quebec. I've missed my zoukers a lot, but damn, I need to get back in shape. Time to see if I can get into the habit of doing pilates workouts at home a couple times a week.

A few of you have asked me to talk about dance and I think it might be a bit much to try to combine all of those posts into one. [personal profile] jhameia's question about muscle development feels apropos today, since I woke up sore in my everything. Honestly, muscles are a thing that I never particularly cared about- I'm not the biggest exercise junkie, and I started dancing because it was fun and not because I wanted to have great abs or whatever- but the more I learned, the more I started to realize how valuable the muscle training aspect is, even if I'm still not particularly good at it outside of dance contexts.

babble )

Er, looking at this, my response might miss the mark on things you wanted to know, but if you have further questions feel free to ask! :P
glass_icarus: (jasika nicole)
Having updated some of my tags and icons, I've also edited access/subscriptions, which I've been neglecting for... years, oops. >.> This was mostly an exercise in dropping subscriptions to those who seem to have abandoned their journals or whom I haven't interacted with in years, but I thought I'd post an FYI, in case you're one of the people who suddenly got an add notification and were wondering why.

Today has been a day where academic readings have actually been entertaining, and since an open access file seems to be available, I thought I'd post a link: Burt & Simons, 2014- Pulling back the curtain on heritability studies: Biosocial criminology in the post-genomic era. As I said elsenet, this is a comprehensive academic rant on behavioral genetics that I'm too incoherent to make myself. It also includes probably the most entertaining conclusion paragraph that I've read to date:
We have argued that there is compelling evidence that heritability studies are methodologically flawed, especially for complex social behaviors such as crime. We have argued also that heritability studies are based on an oversimplified and incorrect model of gene function and that the goal of partitioning genetic versus environmental influences on variance in phenotypes is biologically unsound. We therefore recommend an end to heritability studies in criminology. Moreover, given the many flaws in heritability studies, we also call for an end to the use of the oft-repeated version of the phrase: “We know from a wealth of behavioral genetic studies that the heritability of [insert crime or related phenotype] is roughly 50 percent.” Based on the arguments and research discussed in this article, it is apparent that we unequivocally do not know this to be the case. Furthermore, no amount of quantitative genetic research can establish the validity of such heritability estimates or their putative support for the irrelevance of shared environmental factors. Technically flawed and conceptually unsound models—no matter how often published or repeated—do not by virtue of their numbers make for sound evidence.

(Burn much? *g*)
glass_icarus: (fireworks heart)
[personal profile] schneefink asked for my ~5 favorite scenes in Nirvana in Fire/Lang Ya Bang, so naturally I couldn't resist the temptation to rewatch! It's so good that I'll have to subdivide by the overall plot arc, I think. :D Attempting to limit spoilers so I won't go on too long, but here's part 1: top 5 scenes, eps 1-10 )
glass_icarus: (ofelia)
[personal profile] coffeeandink asked what I've been reading lately! Unfortunately most of it has been school-related, as my 2016 bookshelf can attest. Last term I read a few ethnographies for class, which were interesting, but I wouldn't exactly call them funtimes reading. I'm hoping to finish Edward Said's Orientalism before this semester's readings swamp me.

My leisure reading last year was mostly limited to fic, since it's shorter and doesn't require much brainpower; this will likely continue as I have area exams coming up. The only new book I read for fun was Sam Starbuck's Nameless, and I reread Kristin Cashore's Graceling series somewhere around the end of summer/beginning of fall (all thanks to forgotten e-copies). I also spent some of my brainless non-gaming time this winter break rereading the Kushiel series, The Redemption of Althalus, a few Agatha Christie books (Cat Among the Pigeons, Lord Edgware Dies, The Murder of Roger Ackroyd, By the Pricking of my Thumbs), and Georgette Heyer's The Unfinished Clue. I started Nisi Shawl's Everfair but didn't have time to finish it before I came back north. That and anything on my fun to-read list will have to wait until June-ish, I think.

*waves*

Jan. 4th, 2017 06:09 pm
glass_icarus: (avatar: sokka got game)
Trying out a friending meme for the first time in ages (hello, new people!):


This also means I haven't written an intro post in ages, so... bear with me? ^^; Relevant fannish details: I am a HUGE MAGPIE and a lifelong SF/F fan, which you may have noticed if you checked out the list I linked, heh. I mostly write (or at least, wrote) fic, and have occasionally made icons. Relevant personal details: I'm a grad student, a social dancer, and a Chinese-American woman currently living north of the border. I talk loudly and unrepentantly about race and politics, though I've done so less often in internet-public lately.

I'd go into more detail, but since I'm also doing a daily posting meme this month, you can leave me more specific prompts or questions there!
glass_icarus: (uraboku: touko/tsukumo pinky-swear)
I'm safely back north of the border, nearly 2 hours earlier than projected! :D I've seen this meme floating around and it looks like a great way to start off the year, so c/p-ing below:

Let's start 2017 off in a positive way with a Pay It Forward meme. The first 6 people to comment (and more if I can manage it) will receive a surprise from me at some point in 2017 - anything from a book, a ticket, something home-grown or made, a postcard, absolutely any surprise! It will happen when the mood comes over me and I find something that I believe would suit you and make you happy.

(If you don't like surprises and would rather have something off a wishlist and/or some warning, let me know in your comment. The goal is to make you happy.)

If you can, post this in your own journal and pay it forward. Let's do more kind and loving things for each other in 2017, without any reason other than to make each other smile and show that we think of each other.
glass_icarus: (red cliff: sun shangxiang)
In hopes of fixing my lack of conversation here, I've decided to have a go at the January posting meme. Give me a topic and a date of preference, if you have one, and I will do my best to post daily for the rest of this month. :)

(I'm also hoping this will assist me with some awkward and recent failures at having conversations that are not about school, dance, or Trumperdink. Academia has, in some ways, really worn away at my ability to be a person, even one who has never been good at small talk. *facedesk*)
glass_icarus: (zoe hand)
I've spent the entirety of winter break in quiet: partly finishing up the last of my fall work before next term starts, but mostly unwinding at home. This is the first time I haven't visited the city- yet, at least- or tried to meet up with friends while on break, which feels a bit odd and which I may regret later. I just felt, somewhere below the level of conscious thought, that I'd like to spend the last of 2016 gathering myself and restoring my energy (read: hermiting) rather than spending it all outwardly.

In between the work, actual leisure reading (!!), and bouts of gaming with my sister (Fallout 4, Civ 5, Dragon Age: Inquisition, Mass Effect 3), I've been thinking over my one-word intentions. I started with connection in 2014, moved on to communication in 2015, and last year I was working on generosity. This year is going to be the start of many challenges, so I think it needs something else. I've considered follow-through, clarity, blaze, sustain, and open, and I'll probably go for one of these in future years, but after 2016 I need to re-center. I want to rediscover the things that will keep me grounded, that will anchor me to myself and to what's most important.

Happy new year, everyone! Let's write ourselves a better 2017. ♥

:D :D :D

Dec. 26th, 2016 06:37 pm
glass_icarus: (rolly bird)
I was gonna wait to read more before I started on Yuletide recs but I can't, because LOOK A HUGE LONG NIRVANA IN FIRE FIX-IT FIC! The Next Life made me laugh, and cry, and laugh, and the character interactions are pitch-perfect. ♥ ♥ ♥ (Spoilers for... the whole series, I guess?)
glass_icarus: (avatar: toph/katara mudfight)
Vacation doesn't officially start until I've finished the last of the synopses for the lit review I've been putting off, but I am back in the states! I managed to finish half a scarf on the train ride home, based on this pattern, except I plan to modify it to an infinity scarf. (I actually like the natural off-white/beige color but the yarn I had is a glorious red, so... maybe next time.)

Meme from [personal profile] tielan, who gave me the letter T:
1. Comment on this post with "MEEEEEE!"
2. I will give you a letter.
3. Think of 5 fictional characters and post their names and your comments on these characters in your LJ.

Toph Bei Fong (A:TLA), because OF COURSE. ♥ ♥ ♥ What can I say about Toph that I haven't said before?? She takes no shit and gives no fucks (with her parents as the single exception), and her FACES are my favorite! (Well, okay, all of their faces are my favorite, but really though. &TOPH;)

Ty Lee (A:TLA), who I love for being 100% upbeat and also 100% underestimated, hahaha. Her section in that story I wrote about the Fire Nation ladies explains pretty much everything about my feels. :D

Tonks (HP), who was my favorite independent bouncy badass lady figure in HP, pre-Remus, and also because the metamorphmagus thing is super cool- I have a soft spot for transformation magic. I still don't love the Remus thing and personally am interested in shipping her with almost anyone else (I do have an R/S OTP problem but there are SO MANY interesting options- Kingsley for Auror fun, Charlie or Bill Weasley for oddball family hijinks, Fleur because that would be AMAZING, etc.?!), but the more distance I gain from HP6 & 7, the more I think I've come to appreciate some of fandom's takes on the tail end of canon too.

Tamaki (Ouran High School Host Club), who is probably the most ridiculous character I have EVER SEEN, but also one of the most lovable, hee! My favorite thing about him is that his heart is so enormous, and that he's completely unashamed of wearing it on his sleeve at all times. Where Kyouya is all about the IQ, Tamaki is all about the EQ, which is why they make the perfect team, and he truly embodies the emotional generosity that I strive for.

The Iron Bull (Dragon Age: Inquisition) might be a liiiiiittle bit of a stretch, but I've got Dragon Age on the mind, so. *g* It's been a while since I last played and I'm looking forward to gaming with my sister; hopefully we'll get to this rather than Fallout (though teaming up on that last time was fun). Bull is an amiable and easygoing character who didn't strike me much during my playthrough, but he's definitely grown on me through fic (why yes, I have been reading ALL the Bull/Dorian, and it's been glorious). You have to love a spy who comes straight out and says he's a spy, and then proceeds to be so straightforward and genuinely thoughtful and good with people that you kind of forget that. It's a truly unique kind of sneaky! Also I love that he treats sex, kinks and safewords and all, with the same kind of easygoing openness that he treats everything else- canon sex talks with Bull are the most refreshing I've seen, actually.
glass_icarus: (to hear)
1. Seriously (written by Sara Bareilles), Leslie Odom Jr.
2. Hallelujah, Pentatonix
3. Cold War, Janelle Monae

as;dlfkja

Nov. 14th, 2016 03:38 pm
glass_icarus: (korra: lin/korra)
Resource post has been updated to include suggestions from another friend (this time with issue-specific organizations). & now, back to schoolwork!
glass_icarus: (hp: mwpp up to no good)
1. Yes, I'll accompany my neighbor is a great initiative in NYC, if anyone would like to participate! This is a small, simple thing that you can do to help keep Muslims, POC, LGBTQ, etc. safe, and I would also suggest looking out for and/or creating similar commute-company or rideshare initiatives local to you. It doesn't have to be limited to the US either- given the post-Brexit spikes in hate crimes, perhaps there are already things like this in the UK?

2. I know a lawyer who was "a little salty" over donating to the ACLU, as they are well-funded, and they suggested a number of alternative legal organizations that I thought would be worth passing on. Most of these are national groups so local suggestions would be welcome; I don't mind being the list-keeper for this if you don't mind some delays (grad school and all!). ^^;

a miscellaneous but immigration-heavy list:
- CARA Pro Bono Project
- Nebraska Appleseed
- Sylvia Rivera Law Project (SRLP)
- Immigrant Defense Project
- National Immigration Law Center
- National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild
- Central American Legal Assistance
- Make the Road New York
- National Domestic Workers Alliance
- Equal Justice Initiative
- Southern Center for Human Rights
- NAACP Legal Defense Fund
- Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund
- Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund (AALDEF)
- Asian Americans Advancing Justice
- National Center for Access to Justice
- Immigrant Defenders Law Center
* Immigrant Justice Corps also has a list of host organizations.
- Southern Poverty Law Center
- Desis Rising Up and Moving
- National Day Laborer Organizing Network
- Mijente
- Sikh Coalition
- CUNY CLEAR (Creating Law Enforcement Accountability & Responsibility)
- National Partnership for New Americans
- New York Immigration Coalition
- Detention Watch Network
- Families for Freedom
- Dream Defenders
- Black Alliance for Just Immigration
- South Asian Americans Leading Together
- United We Dream

They also suggested Arab American Association in NYC, but other organizations supporting Muslim communities would be welcome, so feel free to jump in and comment.

eta; some organizations supporting Muslim communities (thanks!):
- Muslims for Progressive Values
- Muslim Alliance for Sexual and Gender Diversity
- No One Left Behind
- Council on American-Islamic Relations
- Muslim Advocates
- MPower Change
- National Network of Arab American Communities

eta 2; more resources from another friend!
3. Fighting climate change:
- Sierra Club
- Union of Concerned Scientists
- Nature Conservancy
- NRDC
- 350.org

4. Gun control:
- Brady Campaign
- Everytown for Gun Safety

5. Investigative journalism, 1st Amendment Rights:
- Pro Publica
- Mother Jones
- First Amendment Coalition

6. Reproductive rights:
- Planned Parenthood Action
- Center for Reproductive Rights
- National Network of Abortion Funds

last updated: 1/28/17

checking in

Nov. 9th, 2016 12:35 pm
glass_icarus: (Default)
I couldn't sleep last night, but this morning, as President Obama said, the sun rose again. My heart is heavy, but if there was ever a moment for generosity: this is it.

Open thread day: how are you all doing? I'm listening. ♥

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glass_icarus: (Default)
just another fork-tongued dragon lady

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