“This gorgeous Hälssen & Lyon calendar is made of brewable tea. Each day is made of fine pressed wafer thin tea leaves.”
I have a mighty need
“This gorgeous Hälssen & Lyon calendar is made of brewable tea. Each day is made of fine pressed wafer thin tea leaves.”
I have a mighty need
This mermaid isn’t what she appears to be at first look, much like the legends claim.
Sold on Etsy.
(plural salps, salpa, salpae or salpa) a barrel-shaped, planktonic tunicate. It moves by contracting, thus pumping water through its gelatinous body. The salp strains the pumped water through its internal feeding filters, feeding on phytoplankton.
Etymology: Neo-Latin, special use of Latin salpa < Greek sálpē - kind of fish.
NotWallpaper featuring Patterned Paint Rollers. Our patterned paint rollers help you create a beautiful stencil like design on walls, wood, furniture, fabric, paper, clay and more!
The Higgs, The Dilaton & The Big Bang
The world of particle physics was vindicated upon the discovery of the Higgs Boson (the long-sought after particle that plays a crucial role in granting elementary particles mass). Obviously, the Higgs is a key component in tackling the nature of matter itself, but now it appears as if the Higgs my provide valuable insight to the expansion of the universe and the events that came after the big bang.
To read the full article, see: http://www.fromquarkstoquasars.com/the-higgs-the-dilaton-the-big-bang/
image credit: NASA / WMAP Science Team
can’t say I understand all of this, but it’s nice to grapple with!
Nerds and Male Privilege (definitely worth a read!)
I want to tell you a story.
A few years ago, I was dating a girl who was decidedly not nerd curious. She tolerated my geeky interests with a certain bemused air but definitely didn’t participate in ‘em… not even setting foot inside a comic store on new comic day. She’d wait outside until I was done… which could be a while, since I was friends with several of the staff.
She came in the store exactly once, after I’d explained that no, it’s a pretty friendly place… well lit, spacious, organized and with helpful – and clearly identified – staff members who were willing to bend over backwards to make sure their customers were satisfied.
She was in there for less than 4 minutes before one mouth-breathing troglodyte began alternately staring at her boobs – evidently hoping that x-ray vision could develop spontaneously – and berating her for daring to comment on the skimpy nature of the costumes – in this case, Lady Death and Witchblade. She fled the premises, never to return.
When both the manager and I explained to him in no uncertain terms as to what he did wrong he shrugged his shoulders. “Hey, I was just trying to help you guys! She couldn’t understand that chicks can be tough and sexy! Not my fault she’s a chauvinist,” he said.
And that was when I shot him, your honor.
So with that example in mind, let’s talk about a subject I’ve touched on before: Male Privilege and how it applies to geeks and – more importantly – geek girls.
MALE PRIVILEGE: WHAT IS IT, EXACTLY?
I don’t think I’m breaking any news or blowing minds when I point out that geek culture as a whole is predominantly male. Not to say that women aren’t making huge inroads in science fiction/fantasy fandom, gaming, anime and comics… but it’s still a very male culture. As such, it caters to the predominantly male audience that makes it up. This, in turn leads to the phenomenon known as male privilege: the idea that men – most often straight, white men – as a whole, get certain privileges and status because of their gender.
(Obvious disclaimer: I’m a straight white man.)
In geek culture, this manifests in a number of ways. The most obvious is in the portrayal of female characters in comics, video games and movies. Batman: Arkham City provides an excellent example.
The women are all about sex, sex, sexy sextimes. With maybe a little villainy thrown in for flavor. They may be characters, but they’re also sexual objects to be consumed.
I will pause now for the traditional arguments from my readers: these characters are all femme fatales in the comics, all of the characters in the Arkham games are over-the-top, the men are just as exaggerated/sexualized/objectified as the women. Got all of that out of your systems? Good.
Because that reaction is exactly what I’m talking about.
Y’see, one of the issues of male privilege as it applies to fandom is the instinctive defensive reaction to any criticism that maybe, just maybe, shit’s a little fucked up, yo. Nobody wants to acknowledge that a one-sided (and one-dimensional) portrayal of women is the dominant paradigm in gaming; the vast majority of female characters are sexual objects. If a girl wants to see herself represented in video games, she better get used to the idea of being the prize at the bottom of the cereal box. If she wants to see herself as a main character, then it’s time to get ready for a parade of candyfloss costumes where nipple slips are only prevented by violating the laws of physics. The number of games with competent female protagonists who wear more than the Victoria’s Secret Angels are few and far between.
The idea that perhaps the way women are portrayed in fandom is aleetle sexist is regularly met with denials, justifications and outright dismissal of the issue. So regularly, in fact, that there’s a Bingo card covering the most common responses. Part of the notion of male privilege in fandom is that nothing is wrong with fandom and that suggestions that it might benefit from some diversity is treated as a threat.
But what is that threat, exactly?
In this case, the threat is that – ultimately – fandom won’t cater to guys almost to exclusion… that gays, lesbians, racial and religious minorities and (gasp!) women might start having a say in the way that games, comics, etc. will be created in the future. The strawmen that are regularly trotted out – that men are objectified as well, that it’s a convention of the genre, that women actually have more privileges than guys – are a distraction from the real issue: that the Privileged are worried that they won’t be as privileged in the near future if this threat isn’t stomped out. Hence the usual reactions: derailment, minimization and ultimately dismissing the topic all together.
As much as my nerdy brethren wish that more girls were of the geeky persuasion, it’s a little understandable why women might be a little reticent. It’s hard to feel valued or fully included when a very vocal group insists that your input is irrelevant, misguided and ultimately unwelcome. It’s small wonder why geekdom – for all of it’s self-proclaimed enlightened attitudes towards outsiders and outcasts – stil retains the odor of the guy’s locker room.
HOW MALE PRIVILEGE AFFECTS GEEK GIRLS IN REAL LIFE
Don’t make the mistake of thinking male privilege is solely about how big Power Girl’s tits are, fan service and jiggle physics in 3D fighters. It affects geek girls in direct, personal ways as well.
Remember the example I mentioned earlier with my then-girlfriend in the comic store? Her opinions were deemed mistaken and she was told she didn’t “get it”… because she was a girl.
Y’see, one of the issues that nerd girls face is the fact that they are seen as girls first and anything else second. And before you flood my comments section demanding to know why this is a bad thing, realize that being seen as a “girl” first colors every interaction that they have within fandom. They’re treated differently because they are women.
We will now pause for the expected responses: well that’s a good thing isn’t it, girls get special treatment because they’re girls, guys will fall all over themselves to try to get girls to like ‘em so it all balances out.
If you’re paying attention you’ll realize that – once again – those reactions are what I’m talking about.
Y’see, nobody’s saying that women don’t receive different treatment from guys… I’m saying that being treated differently is the problem. And yes, I know exactly what many of you are going to say and I’ll get to that in a minute.
Male privilege – again – is about what men can expect as the default setting for society. A man isn’t going to have everything about him filtered through the prism of his gender first. A man, for example, who gets a job isn’t going to face with suggestions that his attractiveness or that his willingness to perform sexual favors was a factor in his being hired, nor will he be shrugged off as a “quota hire”. A man isn’t expected to be a representative of his sex in all things; if he fails at a job, it’s not going to be extrapolated that all men are unfit for that job. A man who’s strong-willed or aggressive won’t be denigrated for it, nor are men socialized to “go along to get along”. A man can expect to have his opinion considered, not dismissed out of hand because of his sex. When paired with a woman who’s of equal status, the man can expect that most of the world will assume that he’s the one in charge. And, critically, a man doesn’t have to continually view the world through the lens of potential violence and sexual assault.
Now with this in mind, consider why being a girl first may be a hindrance to geek girls. A guy who plays a first person shooter – Call of Duty, Halo, Battlefield, what-have-you – online may expect a certain amount of trash talking, but he’s not going to be inundated with offers for sex, threats of rape, sounds of simulated masturbation or demands that he blow the other players – but not before going to the kitchen and getting them a beer/sandwich/pizza first. Men will also not be told that they’re being “too sensitive” or that “they need to toughen up” when they complain about said sexual threats.
Men also won’t have their opinions weighed or dismissed solely on the basis of how sexy or attractive they are. The most common responses a woman can expect in an argument – especially online – is that she’s fat, ugly, single, jealous, a whore, or a lesbian – or any combination thereof – and therefore her opinion is irrelevant, regardless of it’s actual merits. This is especially true if she’s commenting on the portrayal of female characters, whether in comics, video games or movies.
Men can expect that their presence at an event won’t automatically be assumed to be decorative or secondary to another man. Despite the growing presence of women in comics, as publishers, editors and creators as well as consumers, a preponderance of men will either treat women at conventions as inconveniences, booth bunnies or even potential dates. Many a female creator or publisher has had the experience of convention guests coming up and addressing all of their questions to the man at the table… despite being told many times that the man is often the assistant, not the talent, only there to provide logistical support and occasional heavy lifting.
Men are also not going to be automatically assigned into a particular niche just based on their gender. A girl in a comic store or a video game store is far more likely to be dismissed as another customer’s girlfriend/sister/cousin rather than being someone who might actually be interested in making a purchase herself. And when they are seen as customers, they’re often automatically assumed to be buying one of the designated “girl” properties… regardless of whether they were just reading Ultimate Spider-Man or looking for a copy of Saint’s Row 3.
Of course, the other side of the coin isn’t much better; being dismissed for the sin of being a woman is bad, but being placed on the traditional pillar is no less insulting. Guys who fall all over themselves to fawn over a geek girl and dance in attendance upon her are just as bad. The behavior is different, but the message is the same: she’s different because she’s a girl. These would-be white knights are ultimately treating her as a fetish object, not as a person. It’s especially notable when it comes to sexy cosplayers; the guys will laude them for being geek girls and celebrate them in person and online. They’ll lavish attention upon them, take photos of them and treat them as queens…
And in doing so, they’re sending the message that women are only valued in geek culture if they’re willing to be a sexually alluring product. Everybody loves Olivia Munn when she enters the room ass-cheeks first as Aeon Flux, but nobody is particularly concerned by the girls dressed in a baseball tee, jeans and ballet flats. One of these is welcomed into geek culture with open arms, the other has to justify their existence in the first place.
WHAT DOES ALL OF THIS MEAN TO YOU?
The reason why male privilege is so insidious is because of the insistance that it doesn’t exist in the first place. That willful ignorance is key in keeping it in place; by pretending that the issue doesn’t exist, it is that much easier to ensure that nothing ever changes.
Geek society prides itself on being explicitly counter-culture; nerds will crow about how, as a society, they’re better than the others who exclude them. They’ll insist that they’re more egalitarian; geeks hold tight to the belief that geek culture is a meritocracy, where concepts of agism, sexism and racism simply don’t exist the way it does elsewhere. And yet, even a cursory examination will demonstrate that this isn’t true.
And yet geeks will cling to this illusion while simultaneously refusing to address the matters that make it so unattractive to women and minorities. They will insist that they treat women exactly the same as they treat guys – all the while ignoring the fact that their behavior is what’s making the women uncomfortable and feeling unwelcome in the first place. They will find one girl in their immediate community who will say that she’s not offended and use her as the “proof” that nobody else is allowed to be offended.
Changing this prevailing attitude starts with the individual. Call it part of learning to be a better person; being willing to examine your own attitudes and behaviors and to be ruthlessly honest about the benefits you get from being a white male in fandom is the first step. Waving your hands and pretending that there isn’t a problem is a part of the attitude that makes women feel unwelcome in fandom and serves as the barrier to entry to geeky pursuits that she might otherwise enjoy.
Bringing the spotlight onto the concept of male privilege as it exists in nerd culture is the first step in making it more welcoming of diversity, especially women.
*Thanks to Madoka for bringing this to my attention.
The Lorenz system is a system of ordinary differential equations (the Lorenz equations) first studied by Edward Lorenz. It is notable for having chaotic solutions for certain parameter values and initial conditions. In particular, the Lorenz attractor is a set of chaotic solutions of the Lorenz system which, when plotted, resemble a butterfly or figure eight.
The Lorenz Equations:
Plotting the three differential equations requires the usage of a computer. Plotted on a three-dimensional plane, a shape unlike any other forms. Instead of a simple geometric structure or even a complex curve, the structure now known as the Lorenz Attractor weaves in and out of itself. Projected on the X-Z plane, the attractor looks like a butterfly; on the Y-Z plane, it resembles an owl mask. The X-Y projection is useful mainly for glimpsing the three-dimensionality of the attractor; it looks something like two paper plates, on parallel but different planes, connected by a strand of string. As the Lorenz Attractor is plotted, a strand will be drawn from one point, and will start weaving the outline of the right butterfly wing. Then it swirls over to the left wing and draws its center. The attractor will continue weaving back and forth between the two wings, its motion seemingly random, its very action mirroring the chaos which drives the process. (Isn’t that beautiful?) Source.
Every single word of this.
The body monitoring though.
I know. This is a very controversial topic right now but hear me out. Because I am disabled and I am frustrated with what this site has turned ableism into. Nothing more or less than a list of words to be avoided . Tumblr informs me that that is all I have to face and struggle with every time I leave the house. I really wish a simple list was all ableism was. I do. But Why aren’t we focusing on the real culprit here?
Ignorance. Ignorance that tumblr is spreading because they refuse to talk about the real issues. How about the unheard of concept that people with mental disabilities are not stupid! And you know what? Not one single time in all of these lists floating around have I seen someone say that. No, instead we are told that you should not use the word because the mentally disabled should find it hurtful and offensive. Excuse me? These lists have spread all across this site and back. Lists informing everyone that the first thing you should think of when you think of the mentally disabled are the taboo words “stupid” and “dumb”. And no one seems to understand how problematic that is. How you all have single handedly put that label on people by claiming to fight against ableism. Let me instead give you something new to think about. People with mental disabilities are NOT stupid and that word has NO place being used that way. Trying to turn it into a slur? That will never happen. It is a common part of our language. It’s not going away. All you have done is told people that they have a new set of words that should hurt them every time they hear it and made an association so that the first thought when someone hears that word is now the disabled, creating new prejudice and more ableism than before.
Why are you focusing on words instead of teaching that not everyone in a wheelchair is paralyzed? Every person who has ever needed a wheelchair knows all too well that this is a very serious problem that tumblr surprisingly shys away from. And what about the fact that just because you see a person walking in a store or down the street, you cannot assume they do not have a chronic and/or invisible illness? These are some mind blowing topics right? Things that might really educate some people about what ableism is help help limit the prejudice and fear that people face every single time they leave their house.
Ableism isn’t a list of words that some able bodied and minded people put together to inform the disabled what they should and should not find offensive. Ableism is maintaining ignorance and ignoring the real issues.
#i mean yeah ableist slurs exist and matter#but idk what to tell you if you think the height of ableism activism is calling ppl out for saying ‘lame’ or ‘jerk’#meanwhile little to no ppl who don’t have these issues don’t give a fuck about ppl with severe mental illnesses like psychosis#disabled ppl being more vulnerable to abuse? mental health resources are woefully inadequate?#who cares about all that someone said ‘dumb’ on the internet
Crested Fireback (Lophura ignita)
…a species of pheasant that is native to lowland forests in the Thai-Malay Peninsula, Borneo and Sumatra. Like other galliformes L. ignita forages on the forest floor and will feed on plants, fruits and small invertebrates and vertebrates. True to their common name crested firebacks sport a peocock-like crest. Sexes are dimorphic with males sporting a blue, black, and orange coloration, And females sporting a brown and white coloration.
Currently Lophura ignita is listed as near threatened and faces threats from deforestation and hunting.
♥ DEAD MEN DON’T CATCALL ♥
Nor do genuinely decent men, or classy men, or men with wives/girlfriends, or in fact MOST living breathing men. The few that do? Find where their mother, sister, girlfriend and/or wives live and rebuke them over teaching their barbarian some manners. End of story
♥ DEAD MEN DON’T ADD BORING, UNNECESSARY “BUT WAH WAH WAH NOT ALL MEN” COMMENTARY TO PEOPLE’S ARTWORK ♥
19th Century Queer Couples
1. 1891 – Photo by Alice Austen
2. 1855 – Martha O’Curry
3. 1890 – via www.ChloeAndOlivia.wordpress.com
4. 1890 – via www.Flickr.com/photos/SShreeves
5. 1899 – via FYeahQueerVintage.tumblr.com
6. 1900 – Anna Moor and Elsie Dale
7. 1900 – Young souple seated in garden, from the Powerhouse Museum Collection, via HerSaturnReturns.com
8. Kitty Ely, Class of 1887 (L) and Helen Emory Class of 1889, Mount Holyoke Students, via VintagePhoto.Livejournal.com
10. Lily Elise and Adrienne Augarde, 1907, via FYeahQueerVintage.tumblr.com
Collected by Marie Lyn Bernard, via retronaut
This is an amazing collection. I think what excites me so much about it, apart from the PDAs which indicate these are clearly romantic relationships and not just friendships, is the women of colour who are included. No 2 is even an inter-racial couple!
To add to this relationships such as these were able to be visible because during this era women were considered sex-less, that is that they did not have sex, so they could only have innocently amorous relationships with other women. In addition, in the late Victorian/early Edwardian era there was a large lesbian subculture where women had openly butch/femme relationships where one partner would often pass as a male and would accompany the other woman in public and be her escort to events and the like. Within that culture were femme/femme relationships, and sometimes butch/butch relationships. This practice was surprisingly popular among the higher class, where it was seen as entertainment for the women involved by the outside world. This culture was also accompanied by theatrical instances of cross-dressing lesbians who often became very famous. On the more extreme side of the culture were groups of high class women who had large balls that essentially would boil down to lavish orgies.
For the middle class, however, it was very easy for women to be in such relationships with little questioning as women were encouraged to live together as living with a male who was not family was immoral, and those who chose to be ‘spinsters’ often lived with a close friend. Often times in these situations the women would be in a relationship, where in some cases one partner would cross-dress though that was not always the case. When women lived together, it was rarely seen as questionable if the two became very close, and women were encouraged to have these sorts of relationships.
Sneaky Healthy Mint Chip Milkshake / recipe
Second Rare Oarfish Washes Ashore in Southern California
For the second time in a week, the rare, serpentine oarfish has surfaced on a Southern California beach.
Beach goers at Oceanside Harbor crossed paths Friday afternoon with the deep-sea monster when its carcass washed ashore, Oceanside Police Officer Mark Bussey said. The fish measured 13 ½ feet long. The discovery came just days after an 18-foot dead oarfish was found in the waters off Catalina Island.
“The call came out as a possible dead whale stranded on the beach, so we responded and saw the fish on the sand right as it washed up,” Bussey said.
Oceanside police then contacted SeaWorld San Diego, the Scripps Research Institute and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Suzanne Kohin of NOAA Fisheries Serivice responded, measured and took possession of the oarfish for research, Bussey said. He further added that people on the beach were “flabbergasted” to see the fish.
“It’s not the typical fish you see on shore,” he said, adding the oarfish probably weighed over 200 pounds. The fish was far too big for Santana to carry alone; it took 15 people to bring the beast to shore.
But these two massive fish are puny by oarfish standards, according to the NOAA. The oarfish is the largest bony fish in the sea and can grow over 50 feet in length. Very little is known about the species, since it usually is found hundreds, if not thousands of feet below the surface, reaching depths up to 3,000 feet.