frith_in_thorns: An open black umbrella with small red hearts falling out of it (.Love)
I know I just made another post with youtube embeds, but. It's the 29th March in the UK now.



Been ten years waiting
But it's better late than the never
We've been told before
We can't wait one minute more

Ohh, me and my baby driving down
To a hilly seaside town in the rainfall
Ohh, me and my baby stand in line
You never seen a sight so fine
As the love that's gonna shine at City Hall

Me and my baby been through a lot of good and bad
Learned to kiss the sky
Made our mamas cry
Seen a lot of friends, after giving it all they had
Lay down and die
Lay down and die

[...]

Ten years waiting for this moment of fate
When we say the words and sign our names
If they take it away again someday
This beautiful thing won't change

Ohh, me and my baby driving down
To a hilly seaside town in the rainfall
Ohh, me and my baby stand in line
You never seen a sight so fine
As the love that's gonna shine at City Hall.
frith_in_thorns: Mako Mori with an umbrella above her head in the rain (PR Mako Mori)
I will write a thing for National Coming Out Day this year too.

I'm gay and ace. It took me several painful years and painful experiences before I knew that I was, and that I was allowed to be either of those things. But you probably already knew that about me. It's not the point of this post, really.

Here is the thing: coming out, for me, is a choice. And not an irrevocable, one-time thing, but a thing I have to do pretty much for each new person/situation I meet. I'm femme-presenting, and my body is in the range of shapes judged acceptable to be presented in that way. It's pretty easy for me not to "look" queer. And that can be incredibly frustrating: it's an endless social dance around oblique questions to new acquaintances to try and get a handle on their views, and bosses who ask casual questions about my assumed-male partner, and the moment of baffled confusion from every single estate agent when my girlfriend and I, who walked in holding hands, assure them that we're looking for a one-bed not a two-bed place.

(For weeks last year I was being harassed on my way into work by a group of young teenage boys. Their insult of choice as I biked past was "lesbian!". When I eventually mentioned this to the office boss he was horrified to learn about the harassment -- and also that I was being insulted specifically like that. But he was very very Christian, so I didn't feel I could say anything.)

But usually it's in my control. And that is a privilege, one that I can depend on and that keeps me safe.

For many, many others in my QUILTBAG community, it isn't a choice. She's too butch, he's too femme, she's too obviously trans*, ze's read differently by different people in the group ze's talking to.

Those of us who pass can hide behind those who can't. We use them, intentionally and accidentally, as shields between us and those who would harm us. (He looks queer, not her.) We talk about generalised statistics of violence against our community as if the burden doesn't fall with obscene disproportion on trans* women, and trans* women of colour at that. And it's not fucking good enough. It isn't.

This is one of the reasons I support the philosophy that those of us who can stay hidden should try to be out, assuming it's safe for us to do so (and what comprises "safe" is exclusively for an individual to decide). It can feel frightening and uncomfortable. But. We can help everyone by widening the umbrella of who's seen as queer, and by widening acceptance. We can help by boosting voices too much ignored, and by sharing resources, and by showing that ze's not alone in this group of people, in this room, in this company.

If we're going to claim community we need to be a community. This means no one gets thrown under buses because their needs are different, or more complicated, or less photogenic. This includes things like education and support -- those of us who get passing privilege need to take our share of this.

We talk about wanting better allies. We need to be better allies.
frith_in_thorns: (Firefly - Misc - can't take sky)
Soooo, yesterday evening I sat down to type up some of my November fic, and put Elementary on in the background because I had been meaning to get around to watching it. And then I accidentally most of the aired episodes, and barely any typing up. Oops.

I have also now written half a meta about the many ways Elementary is very good and worlds less infuriating than Moffat's Sherlock (which has been putting me off any and all versions of Holmes for the last year). And I love love love Joan Watson to bits.

A reaction I got to posting this on Facebook was "But Elementary has no gay". Moffat's Sherlock did not have gay in it. It had incessive and offensive queerbaiting capped hastily each time with LOL NO HOMO. The fan subtext does not make this gay-friendly. It doesn't make the commentary by Moffat and BC less awful.

I came across a quote in an article/blog post a while back -- I cannot for the life of me remember where, but chances are it was from s.e. smith or one of the articles posted on the stfu_moffat tumblr. It said something along the lines of: "It's actually astonishing that vigorously-denied subtext between two white male leads is seen as being more progressive than a Watson played by a WoC." That is all.

-

I have also been catching up on this series of Merlin, where the writers have apparently decided that running the exact same multi-ep arc with a different principal three different times wasn't enough. *facepalms, giggling* Also most of the 'plot' still hinges on character A not telling character B the important information which would allow it to be resolved with in five minutes. Although this season has not had a tournament episode yet, so I should probably give some credit for that...

In other news, Gwen continues to be gorgeous, Merlin continues to be extremely woobie, and the geography in and around Camelot continues to make no sense whatsoever. (Morgana's remarkably similar ambush in the exact same glade at the beginning of two episodes in a row has been my absolute favourite example of this. Oh show, you really are incredibly stupid. But very pretty.)

I can't really be too sad about this show being cancelled. It's terrible (this fact is freely admitted by its fans) and it's had a five-year run. But you have to love a show so blatant with its "if the pretty men take off their shirts all the time, maybe viewers won't notice quite so many plotholes!" I shall definitely miss it. Hopefully the BBC will come up with something else as ridiculous and pretty to put in that timeslot. Suggestions?
frith_in_thorns: (Diana 2)
I have some thoughts for (Inter)National Coming Out Day.

If I'd posted this when I opened this tab, a few hours ago, it would be a happier post. About 70% of my facebook feed today has been taken up friends posting statuses about it, and it's fun, you know, to actually see a load of us all being vocal at once. To talk about issues in public, and have people who normally refuse to listen read the threads because we're talking about something positive. (That said, the thread on my status has devolved into a discussion on tea and on whether it's unforgivably antisocial to read a book during sex.)

But. Something about getting quick, supportive "Likes" or comments from people who feel happy tossing around identities as pejoratives, or from the guy in my gaming group who I've had long, long arguments with about his "right" to call people f*ggots or to be a racist douche -- well. It's that easy, is it, to do your bit and assert you support us. Today. Just today.

There is an LGBTQsoc stand at Freshers' Fair. And every year, lots and lots of straight people come up and say something along the lines of, "I'm not queer, but am I allowed to sign up anyway?"

"Oh yes," the people on the stand say. "In fact, you can also sign onto the mailing list for the activism branch of the society! We're working towards things like improving the uni environment for queer people, writing political letters, and all that sort of stuff. We always need more allies."

"Oh. Actually, I only want to join in on the social side of things. You know, the drinks nights?"

Lots and lots and lots of people. Every time. We'll be your allies while it's fun for us. Not when it's work. When you have to sit back sometimes, and give up things you like, and speak up when no one else does.

I am remarkably privileged. I am white and my parents are comfortably middle-class and I can usually hide my crazy and I can talk about being gay and poly and ace because it's safe for me to do so. I get angry about microaggressions and slurs and I am so incredibly lucky because I am safe.

Acceptance is good. Acceptance is important. Action is more important, because this world is so far from good enough. I can come out, but we have gay kids and trans* kids living on the streets and we have people being murdered in all these countries we live in and we are not doing enough. I am not doing enough. We all need to work so much harder.

Days of Things are all very well, but it's the rest of the year that's important. What you're doing then. Who you're remembering. What actions you're taking to make the world better on all those other days.
frith_in_thorns: (Zundry - bobtail squid)
One exam down. I am very wiped out, but I answered questions, which is a good thing. Send pictures of baby animals and Neal Caffrey.

Because I wouldn't be me if I wasn't geeking out about random bits of biological experiments, this was my favourite question:

"In older experiments aimed at testing the hypothesis that bees estimate distance from energy consumption, worker bees were made to carry small weights. The bees struggled even to gain height when loaded, and overestimated the distance that they had travelled. It was concluded that the bees were using their energy consumption to estimate distance. Provide an alternative explanation of these results."

They put little weights on bees and made them fly around, you guys!! :D Sadly the paper doesn't reference it, so I don't know what the weights were made of...

I don't have an exam tomorrow, and I'm really tired, so I shall now drink wine and pretend that there isn't at least one person I badly want to murder.

frith_in_thorns: (Zundry - rainbow jelly)
Hello! This is mainly of use to people currently in Oxford. But I shall spam everyone with it anyway. Since I spend most of my LJ time spamming Ox-friends with fandom, it seems only fair :P

To copy the blurb I wrote for the Facebook event:

"On the week beginning 25th March, Exeter College is hosting the group Christian Concern to hold a conference. Christian Concern (http://www.christianconcern.com/) is anti-lgbtq rights, anti-Islam, and anti-choice.

We believe that these values have no place in Oxford and should not be implicitly supported by allowing the group to hold a conference here. Therefore we will be protesting on Turl Street, outside the conference, to make it clear that Oxford, and the student body, is absolutely opposed."

An article written for the Guardian about the situation is here.

So! I'm pretty sure I invited nearly all of you via FB, but this is another plug in case you'd forgotten. Come and join us, from 11 by the Missing Bean. We've not been allowed to know exactly when the people are arriving, so we'll potentially be there all afternoon, come and join us any time. Bring banners and stuff! (Don't bring glitterbombs, it's bad for the environment and we promised Exeter we wouldn't. Also we really don't want to be in trouble with the police.)

Also, in case it's unclear: This is in no way an anti-Christianity protest, many of the protesters identify as Christians. This is a protest against the hosting (and therefore implicit/implied support or at least lack-of-problem-with) a group with political pull which in the UK is one of the main campaigners against gay marriage, against abortion, against people who are non-Christian.

The LGBTQ campaign had a banner-painting picnic this afternoon in the parks, some photos are below the cut for your entertainment. I'm the one with the dinosaur t-shirt and the extremely frizzy hair, if you wanted to know. Also the one who's signs look like they were made by a 10-yr-old XD (I like rainbows, okay :P)

Permission was given to use these photos as publicity. )

Expect a photo-heavy post tomorrow evening of how it goes! :D
frith_in_thorns: (Merlin - Gwen+Morgana - chibi kissing)
The UK government is currently running a public consultation on whether same-sex couples should be allowed to marry.

Go and reply to it. It's very quick - you can just check the boxes, even. (I'm assuming you're all in favour - if you aren't I have to wonder if I'm on your flist by accident :P)

I don't see anything that says you have to be a UK citizen to reply.

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