first_seventhe is not a Friends-Only journal; however, it is a Somewhat-Friends-Locked journal. I don't have any kind of "friending policy" - if you're here, you're free to comment on anything. If you can see an entry, it's free game. Here's how it usually breaks down:
- Unlocked - Fandom stuff; open entries about writing, art, photography, etc; general bitching; healthblogging and workout stuff in general; memes and photomemes
- Locked - More personal entries; healthblogging / workout stuff with specifics about me; anything that mentions other people not represented on LJ; entries about work or grad school; anything posted during the day (from work) with naughty language in it
- Filtered and locked - Personal entries with life details. I do have a set of filters based on how well I know someone. Don't be offended if you're not on one. Get to know me better.
I'm a friendly person. I like to communicate with people. On this particular LJ I come across like a hobo on speed, but underneath it all I'd like to think I'm keeping a fair bit of intelligence and life experience. I spend all day being smart and intelligible. I don't need to prove anything on my effing Livejournal.
Yes, I am in fandom. Yes, I write fanfiction. I'm old enough that I don't really feel like I have to hide that fact, or even justify it in any way. I'm not exactly trying to sit at the "cool table" any more (as a professional chemical engineer and a part-time graduate student in polymer science, I think they've already revoked my "cool table" license anyway). If the fandom parts bother you in some way, feel free to ignore, or de-friend, or leave me a comment to take you off of X or Y filter. However, if you're here from fandom, feel free to comment on non-fandom-related stuff if you want! Like I said: if you can see it, it's fair game.
I do love random friendings and random stalkers. If you friend me, I'll probably friend you back. If we end up not interacting much, I always reserve the right to take you off certain lists -- my F-List is mainly for my own reading purposes and shouldn't be used to gauge how much I like someone. I like lots of people! Everywhere! Except when I don't, because people suck.
If you're here because you've Googled my real name and followed the internet trail through my website to this journal, leave me a goddamn comment (on this entry) and let me know. Stalkers freak me out.
this is no royal sleepover (1237 words) by seventhe
Fandom: Final Fantasy XII
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Characters: Ashelia B'nargin Dalmasca, Vossler York Azelas
Ashelia is dead, and the Queen of Dalmasca would never ask for comfort.
Perchance (2869 words) by seventhe
Fandom: Final Fantasy X
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Characters: Auron (Final Fantasy X), Braska, Jecht, Tidus's Mother, Yuna's Mother, Rikku's mother, unnamed final fantasy women
Additional Tags: unnamed mothers, Farplane, Pajama Party, this is the worst pajama party
Three grieving women have a (pajama) party. On the Farplane. To die; to sleep.
SO LOOK I AM A FUCK OKAY and what happened here is, first the "pajama party" part of the prompt stuck in my head and I just had to ruin it and the first thing happened, and then the "three women together" part stuck in my head and I had to completely fuck that too so the second part happened and now I am stuck at the corner of Morose Depressing Avenue and Brandy Boulevard and I'm kind of emotionally compromised because instead of spouting 100 words of fluff I made this depressing horrible shit so, welcome to 2017 where Sev destroys all your happiness and prompts, you are welcome, refills are free at this bar
This entry was originally posted at http://seventhe.dreamwidth.org/391434.ht
...or some other shittastic ~~pensive~~ title because I'm so fucking out of goddamn fucks already it's the 14th half of january is gone jesus christ stop fucking moving so fast i would like off this ride thanks
I like the organization of "new year resolutions" not really because I believe you need to wait for a calendar year to make serious changes, but because there's something very neat about the way things can slot into having to write a new date on all your sign-offs and checks
do people still use checks? i only have to sign them at work and lists and notes; to the excel spreadsheet that is my mind1, I like the way aligning change with change sorts itself.
This year I am returning to quantifiable goals in some ways, since the general vagueness of "do X more" may be more friendly but does not truly work in the lifestyle I have at the moment. I wanted to do a deep introspective post as a lead in but fuck that, I already have two truly severe horror stories about 20172 and it's the 14th, but I feel like I want to make a statement about the year before I devolve back into bitchcraft and wizardry.
As another change this year, I am looking for friends to help keep me accountable to these things. I've already roped and wrangled a couple people along with me, but if you have similar goals, let's discuss ways we can
shame uh motivate SHAME each other into proceeding, or mainly just me, I require someone to - not compete with, but to keep up with, in a way, anyway, I am terrible so do stop.
So here is a list of my intentions for what I have labeled 12/52/365/20173:
Health. Rather than breaking this down into a tale of my woes and triggering an actual breakdown I will instead list the targets:
- Get more than 4.5 hours of (good, deep, REM) sleep on average. According to my Fitbit, my average in 2016 was below 4.5 hours4. This involves a lot of things, including going to bed earlier and somehow figuring out how robots relax.
- Working out. My goal for working out is to visit the gym - or otherwise work out - on at least 1/3 of the days of 2017: 122/365/2017. 122 visits. This is 2-3 workouts a week on average which should be doable for someone with fibro, assuming I keep them reasonable.
- General. Continue stocking and making healthy food at home. Drink less at home5. Go back to packing lunches for work.
- Weight/Size. Due to medication changes, 3 surgeries, and a major job change with severely increased my responsibilities, I gained 25-30 lb in 2017, putting me into the beginnings of an unhealthy place I don't want to be6. It's also fairly annoying to be at the upper limit of most of my clothing, to be frank. My goal is to use the above 3 points to try to lose 25+ pounds in 2017, OR return to the range of a size 8-107 where my clothing lives. 25/2017. A half a pound a week will do.
Writing. lassarina is my partner here; we have pledged to write a fic a week of at least 100 words using a list of prompts we gathered earlier. (Of course, I am already behind, although I plan to work on that immediately after this entry.) 52/2017. The hope, of course, is that writing small things helps to spur the writing of larger things. They will be posted on AO3 and linked from here.
- subgoal: at least 1 entry a week on DW (52/2017), and 1 entry a week on my secret business blog which I will share once I have some substance (52/2017).
Art. justira is my partner here; we have, quite hilariously, pledged to draw a thing a day. For Ira, those things may be recognizable as art; for me, I reserve the right to draw a shit doodle with my finger on my iPhone, as long as it is a drawing of some sort. They'll be posted right here at the Feymarch Library where most of my art shame lives.
Home. Of course I have big statements to make about the first floor remodel I want to do, but honestly this is about habits, so my 2017 goal is to declutter my life. Every day I will do at least 1 chore dedicated to decluttering my home8 or otherwise making my life easier (cooking a big meal for the week, etc).
Mental. A few mantras I am focusing on:
- Allow hobbies to be chores. This sounds counter-intuitive, but last year I got away from a lot of hobbies I love because I had "so much other shit to do" that was more important in my mind. This year, writing, art, knitting, gaming, reading; these are allowed to be chores I can give priority to. It's okay to write if I still have dishes to do.
- Recharge your battery. If I have a night where I am truly in too much pain to do anything, I need to stop whining and griping about that, and instead focus on my own comfort and recovery, because self-care is allowed to be a priority, also.
- Ground myself. I'm not a nice person by default9 so making a pledge to share the love or be kinder doesn't really mean anything to me; but I believe I can eliminate some of the negative energy by grounding myself more and letting it just pass on into the neutral environment rather than building up a static charge.
- Be more of who you are. I lost my way at work somewhat this year faced with a gigantic new challenge with no lessening of my previous responsibilities, interpersonal conflicts, and some sporadic and questionable criticism. Moving forward I need to remember who the fuck I am and be that lady as hard as possible, because that's where I am awesomest.
- Allow myself to unplug. I don't have to be tied to my phone - not just for work, but texting with friends or playing stamina games. I can leave it in the corner and just be for an evening.
Work. I need to focus on managing more: I am a manager, not a contributor, and I need to focus more on leading and guiding people in big-picture ways towards improvement. Too many people list me as a project leader or member, when I should not be a worker on anyone's project - and this is what makes my job so unmanageable. It isn't just me letting go; I need to make it clear to others that there should be more than one person who knows how to do the things I do.
Family & Friends.
- See my nieces at least once a month. See my parents at least once a quarter.
- Continue to work with my partner on this great relationship we have developed. Learn to ask him for help more, and learn where his boundaries are for asking help. Show love and appreciation better. Develop a good schedule for spending more time together - we are both very obviously happier and healthier when we do.
- Try to visit someone or travel at least once a quarter -- traveling is really costly to me in terms of energy, but I have broken through some of my traveling-and-health fears last year (Japan!) so it would be cool to travel a bit with friends when the opportunity is there.
- Stay in touch: post, email, text. Reach out in new areas.
Seven is my lucky number. That's 2017.
1 (mind palace?? nothing so fancy; my brain is a four-dimensional fully-formulated spreadsheet archive with tabs, complete with charts, graphs, and little programs that sort by categories and make a smiley face out of pixels.)
2 the first, about my fucking furnace; the second, about my fucking supervisor. stay tuned for more great literature on what makes my life a goddamned shitshow s
3 because I want to quantify it and report on things, see, like the project manager i am
4 Now, the reason I am not dead is because there is also some restless sleep in there, but the problem is twofold: (a) i only get 4.5 fucking hours of the good sleep (b) the good sleep comes in 30-45 minute spurts which is nowhere near what's needed for mental recovery (c) for fibromyalgia one of the most productive and healing things you can do is get REM sleep.
6 lots of family history of pre-diabetes; I've already noticed my hypoglycemia and blood sugar problems are getting worse. I realize this isn't always correlated to weight but as there is some data pointing that way (scientific as well as family), I want to be sure to avoid it, because dude if you stack fuckin diabetes on top of this stack of medical bullshit I may just ravine myself
7 since women's sizes can never make up their damn minds
8 on bad days this might actually be something like "put dishes in dishwasher" but let's face it sometimes even that doesn't happen
9 nothing against anyone, I'm just kind of sociopathic and hate people in general; i've learnt to "play nice" and I can and do feel love for specific people, but i'm really just not friendlyThis entry was originally posted at http://seventhe.dreamwidth.org/391378.ht
So I am having a hard time dealing with this celebrity death. Which is incredibly awkward for me, because I severely dislike celebrity culture in all of its forms and all of its cultures and find admiration of celebrities weird at best and dumb at worst --- and yet, with very little actual fannish involvement on my side, I -- find myself torn up on this one.
Part of it is that she was a brutal advocate for mental illness normalization and a firm voice for feminism against judgment and ownership of womens' bodies; and, in combination, my personalization and respect for that.
Part of it is as a child, with Star-Wars-fan parents, Princess Leia was one of few lady icons I was given that I could relate to and would choose to embody in play with my brother and friends. (Keep in mind I came up in the 80s, in a family who deliberately grew me fierce, angry, and (actual quote) "one tough broad"; does it surprise anyone that I drastically, spasmodically embraced Rosa and (especially) Rydia in the first video game I played where women were fierce and did damage?)
Part of it IS that childhood nostalgia, because (the) Star Wars (trilogy) was our "family night" backup movie in the case that no one would agree; this movie series is a fundamental arterial vein in the blood of my family and my own history and development.
Part of it is her amazing script writing talent, and her incredibly self-deprecating amazing writing, and the way both of those things knit into my own psyche.
and Part of it is that literally the day before, my partner and I were hanging with my parents post-Christmas, and they knew (despite the fact he's 18 years older than me) he'd never seen the trilogy: so we watched the whole thing in one day, fueled by pot roast and wine and whiskey and more wine, and family feeling. Lots of feeling. Even if he fell asleep during the third one because it is literally against the laws of physics to keep this man awake during any given movie.
and literally The Next Day we were out for a lunch with my parents before we drove back to Ohio, and I happened to pull up my text messages, and discovered Carrie had passed away that day in 2016.
I am now watching Clone Wars, the periodical cartoon, in her honor; no matter that Princess/General Leia did not even exist in this time frame; I needed something that was related but wasn't her face: something to respect without it making me more tied-in with this celebrity - a tie-in I already found awkward - and making my own reaction less dealable; I am watching Clone Wars.
And I appreciate it now: there is a young lady as the protagonist --- yes, Anakin is the protagonist, in many ways; but the story is told through Ahsoka, a young badass fucking amazing and powerful padawan lady, and
right now it is what I need, to remind myself that any genre can spit out a powerful lady if it feels compelled to -- and with the bar set to General Leia, I should never expect less.
what the fuck am i even sayingThis entry was originally posted at http://seventhe.dreamwidth.org/391032.ht
SO!! Rina and Sev want to do a fantastical new thing for 2017, to promote fun writing projects: We are collecting prompts to make a Master List of 52 prompts for 2017. We will write something over 100 words for 1 prompt every week. This will be a fun game for you to play.
We are mostly looking for general prompts, like: "sunlight" or "light and dark" or "aliens made us do it"; however, we will accept specific prompts for fandoms we share, which are mostly Final Fantasy games.
We are also looking for 10 "Amnesty Prompts" - which will be the 10 prompts immediately after our 52 prompt collection - which we can use any week the given prompt is not working for us.
Please leave some kick-ass prompt suggestions and help us develop our 52 Week Challenge prompt list!!!
How this will work:
- Leave like up to 5 prompts at a time, with maybe 1-2 as fandom specific prompts and the rest as general. It's way cooler if you leave less than 5 at a time though, so that we can really mix up the prompts. We definitely won't put 5+ in order at once, because we like mixing it up every week.
- We will input prompts as they appear, although, we reserve the right to save some prompts for our Amnesty List if they are awesome.
- Come back, scan the list, and leave one or two more to mess with us!
- We'll let you know when we are done -- we may collect a number of backup prompts for future use.
Comment here, or on Rina's list: everything goes into the GDoc!
READY SET UHHHHHH ... GO PLEASE sob leave us trashThis entry was originally posted at http://seventhe.dreamwidth.org/390564.ht
Thought the first:
The results clearly show that white Americans hate the government more than they hate racism and sexism.
We see that they hate the system enough that relevant experience becomes a negative and lack of experience a positive; that they want change, regardless of what it is, more than they want to embrace and protect their brothers and sisters who are Black, Hispanic, gay, female, chronically ill.
When framed in this way I find myself beginning to find something that I can... understand isn't the exact word I want, because I do not (and will never) understand why anyone finds that man to be a suitable and respectable face of the United States, but it's a framework I can, at least, process. I was a research scientist in an old life; I need to understand some form of why before I can really begin*.
Thought the second:
The new President is not necessarily the scariest piece on this new chessboard (which is surprising in itself). The Vice President is equally terrifying in his horrible, backwards, compassion-less approach to women, to LGBTQ+, to foreigners. But the scariest thing of all is that a full half of our nation either follows this awful rhetoric or found it unoffensive enough to make a vote for non-traditional government a net win. The scariest thing of all is the possibility that 50% of the people I interact with either consider me through a set of sexist, racist**, homophobic filters, or care so little about my sex & gender, my race, and my queerness that they consider me - my friends, my family - an acceptable side-product loss in the all-important act of, basically, giving the government a middle finger.
Thought the third:
It is true that we don't know what the 45th Presidency will be like. It is possible that the situation will be less dire than people expect. But how true? How possible?
Actions speak louder than words, and the actions we have seen at rallies have been (socially, mentally, physically) brutal - and the actions of the P & VP have been to condone these actions rather than shame them; to encourage them, to laugh at them, to cheer them, rather than to denounce and disable them.
I refuse to give the "benefit of the doubt" to a set of people whose visible actions in the last 12+ months have been deplorable. Words and speeches mean nothing compared to actual data.
Thought the fourth:
There are calls to be kind, to attempt understanding and teamwork, and I would correct that phrasing somewhat myself: we need to be kind, yes, but we need to not let calm turn into complacency. We need to be a hard kind, a strong kind; we need our goodwill to have teeth. Working together is the only way we can move out of this, yes; but I see no real reason to be "kind" to someone promoting agendas of racism, of sexism, of assault on woman-bodies and conversion camps for the LGBTQetc.
We need to avoid descending to the low level of the very thing we are fighting, yes, but I do not truly think you can kill hate entirely with only kindness and love. I also - less, or maybe more, importantly - do not think myself capable of showing true kindness to someone whose actions and beliefs condemn myself and my friends to danger and to a lesser-than status.
Thought the final:
I still feel like this is a world that doesn't exist; like this didn't happen, like it couldn't have happened. Possibly because I watched it unfold while in the airport in another country, on another continent, through the tiny pocket-size screen of my smartphone -- but also partly because, I fear, I still had a piece of faith left in (white) humanity.
* begin here meaning the process of sorting through my own feelings and determining the path i want to take
** "racist" does not actually apply to me here, as I am white AF, but I needed to recognize it in this sentence
I spent today noticing how I spend my energy and, notably, what drains me. And, not surprisingly, - lot of what drains me is human interaction. HA HA HA,IM IN MIDDLE/UPPER MANAGEMENT AND DEALING WITH PEOPLE MAKES ME TIRED, isn't it ironic.
So what I'm trying to do is differentiate which interactions I can't avoid, and which ones I could try better to delegate to other people. What I've learned so far:
people coming to my door every 5 minutes when I'm clearly working on something and either asking me questions or giving me updates -- sadly that's part of the job, although I can try to get ppl not in my department better trained so they're not always asking me questions and/or asking my department to consider whether I really need to be updated -- but a certain part of this is inherent in the job and will never go away.
visitors, vendor meetings, or other forced interpersonal interactions overtaking the usual workday -- there really is a small portion of this that's required. However. I could work to develop my engineering staff so that they could be the contact point for, say, people who visit from the plants to work on a project. Which leads me to:
working intensely on something with other people -- this is actually the serial killer of my energy. So, this week we had a visitor from the plants to help us re-develop our MOC process and move to new software. She's incredibly knowledgeable and the whole three day visit was entirely amazingly productive. However, this sort of intense interpersonal work for hours at a time is an incredible drain on my reserves and accounts for a lot of the overcharging to my energy credit card. I put my brain into a very highly-functional state and generate incredible amounts of work, looking at big picture as well as small details - the forest and the trees - and I also watch the people I'm working with to figure out what their weaknesses are so that I know we're covering everything we need to. I'm always the one recording because I know for a fact I take the kind of notes we need to capture everything, and then I'm the one compiling what our results were and what conclusions we're going forward with. This constant, intense operation of my super smart*, psychasthenic brain leads to mental exhaustion, which translates into sapping my physical energy just to get through the day, which triggers the fibro feedback as well as the brain fog.
So -- I'm still collecting the data I need, but I'm trying to think of ways I can lessen the amount of my work time spent doing things like that. Technically managers should be leading and directing rather than doing the intense work -- not that I want to avoid doing it, but it's that kind of work ON TOP OF managerial responsibilities that's incompatible. So I obviously need a crew I can trust to do the same level of thinking. I do, so that they can conduct these development-type work meetings on their own and I just review final results.
But that's a lot to implement and I have to figure out other ways to reduce that kind of intensity -- so more thinking.
Also, this is just the first mental evaluation; I'm sure there are more serial killers to identify.
- not being arrogant -- I'm highly intelligent in many of the areas in which I work
It's very hard to be me today because I'm wondering why I can never get anything done, why I collapse after work with such pain and fatigue that I can barely move, what's so much harder abut my job or my health that I can't do the shit other people can, apparently I am having a huge confidence crisis where I think I'm just a weakling who can't do the shit she should be able to do; I'm not disabled, I'm not ill, my jobs not that hard, I just kind of suck
Weeks ago a friend asked me to review his resume. It's still in my inbox. My mum asked me to read her novel and make comments. Halfway done. Another friend asked me to read her novel and make comments. Haven't started. Today a friend asked me to review their resume within a day or two.
How do people find the energy to be actual friends
I'm deleting this entire entry
This entry was originally posted at http://seventhe.dreamwidth.org/388064.ht
Again - who knows how Imzy will kick off and fit in to the current fandom distribution, but. Hey join if you want and let's have some fun. I miss FF fandom and writing prompts and the community feel.
This entry was originally posted at http://seventhe.dreamwidth.org/387628.ht