she didn't look at my face and say "what?!" in horror, so I give myself A+++ on pokerface there. but I did almost burst out crying as soon as she and girl y and our maid left the house. but didn't cry because...??/? big girls don't cry? someone might see me in a moment of weakness and use it against me? the latter probably (non-rationally, I mean). I can be made to cry with effort.
I guess I'm the only one awake. Good for you with the poker-face, I guess. I hope things get better, on multiple levels. Remind your daughters that they will actually have to step on some faces if they want to make a living deconstructing pop culture texts.
Oh, I'm awake too, but spent a while wondering just how much earnestness was acceptable first thing in the morning. I cried, although that generally takes very little. I hope you took it as a massive compliment alameida, and are proud of yourself and Girl X.
Good grief, that's an (unintentional) low blow out of nowhere. Agree with 3, also: people don't stay broken, as you prove yourself.
4:people don't stay broken
How very positive, encouraging, and chipper of you. Some (all?) people carry their shards into their graves with them, but they're the loosers, huh? Smile, al! Or else.
Laura Miller on yabapuri, eropuri
Deliberately ugly and provocative exhibition are not the only thing girls are inserting into their photos. They manipulate other resources to compose photo-textual ensembles that defy cultural norms, using objects and new script styles in their photos to assist in creating images which are unsettling or unseemly. The hedonistic pleasure they take in intertwining and manipulating text and image, usually seen as separate things, reflect playful and impertinent audacity. Their graffiti photo art form requires popular culture expertise and an ability to integrate textual wit, visual novelty, and bad girl panache. The breakdown of rules for good girl gender display is seen in the actual script girls use on their photos, which may unnerve readers' expectations for written Japanese. Girls' writing contains many aberrant characters and subsidiary graphs. They reject the beautiful, orderly handwriting that is supposed to characterize female sensibility and refinement.
1) "manipulating text and image, usually seen as separate things"
Somebody, a supposed cultural studies scholar, can actually write that about 21st century Japan?
2) Which is an example of the standpoint, carried through most of the piece and the book Bad Girls of Japan, that there is a "normal" out there, somewhere, an oppressive discourse that can be resisted or confronted. Starting to annoy me as much as "Fight Republican Evil"
bob, you would like my daughter. she could teach you about a lot of interesting korean manhwa, and she could explain to you how she and her best friend evaluate whether they legitimately found a picture from a favorite anime or manga or manhwa. it doesn't count if it's from a certain kind of aggregator.
thanks for the kind words asilon, thorn, ajay and natilo. I told my husband just now and he literally didn't see the problem until I explained that it felt awful to hear. "remember how we wanted to raise our children in an environment where they didn't have to experience all those things?" me: "yeah, but it was a fucking gut-punch." "it's good, it means she doesn't think you're broken, that's all. you never told her anything else, why would she know?" breezy charm is wearing on me at this point. "but it hurt my feelings." "you shouldn't let it hurt your feelings. it means you did ok. you're not broken! I have to go help her learn this twinkly part on the piano." well, I just won't let it hurt my feelings, then; I can't imagine why I never thought of that before. it could have been really useful when I was a kid! no, of course it's good she takes it to be obvious I'm not broken. that's good. I just feel like there's a 300 lb weight on my chest and I can't breathe properly.
I have said before, and will repeat: Harry Potter, punkass bitch.
One thinks TWYRCL from time to time finds mystifying the erratic edges of one's personality that show the marks of early life in especially high relief, but she's a pretty good sport about it. I don't know why I always have to share my breakfast cereal, though.
Self awareness really helps depression, you know. And you've got some of that, so don't lose it. Also, stupid tasks that require some attention can help too. If it gets bad, you can take up video games.
I know depression, and I specifically know the cumulative toll prolonged illness can take; I haven't taken a comfortable breath in over a year and it gets to you after a while. It could be that your dope is allowing you to feel just better enough that not all of your attention is focused on pain all the time, thus allowing this kind of shit. But, whatever the cause, I sympathize, and remember it's liable to get better sooner or late, and each hour you pass brings that day closer.
PS I have reached what I believe is my alameida perihelion, 686 nautical miles north of you. Gulf of Thailand meetup!
Really sorry, Al. And of course that was a gut punch.
foolishmortal, I'm so sorry to hear about the breathing. That's one of those things you can't just avoid because it hurts and so instead you get to hurt all the time. Ugh.
I want to push back a little on the Harry Potter thing, though. There are a lot of different levels of resilience kids have and a lot of different ways they deal with trauma and neglect. Both Rowan and Colton had more or less the Harry Potter timeline, removed around age 11 and for good by 13, and they responded differently from Harry and from each other. I'd think it was a stretch to call either of them broken, though obviously they broke and healed in various ways if you want to extend that metaphor. But to me the salient part of the Harry Potter story is all the adult wizards who know how bad the Dursley home is and send him back in there anyway, do it with a safety plan or holding their noses and saying they have to follow the rules and it makes me so angry with the adults my boys let know something was wrong and had nothing happen, whatever non-wizards noticed at school that Harry wasn't growing properly, whatever. I don't know, and this isn't necessarily important. Apparently Rowling wrote an excellent social worker in her adult book, which I haven't read yet, and I do think she had her personal reasons for writing a story about a pure-but-abused/neglected boy who maintains his goodness. None of this makes it unproblematic, but I do know several "broken" young people who've drawn considerable strength from the books.
(And sorry if I'm being humorless or too optimistic or just dense with all of this. None of it is intended to hurt, just me thinking about my own things, basically.)
The other part of my silly coming-out-in-high-school story was that I told my teacher to stop talking about gay people as if they weren't in the room because how would you know? And that was when I said that lots of people in the class DID know that I was gay and blah blah blah. But this is another situation where it might be worth somehow eventually reminding your daughter that she probably does know people who've been broken and maybe they're not so good at showing their broken parts even to the people they trust. Not saying you have to out yourself, al, but I think about how hard it was when a high school friend came to me with his sudden and startling (to both of us) hard drug use and I didn't know what to say or how to help him feel better and how hard it was for my friends when I suddenly wanted to tell them that I'd been raped and was falling apart and didn't know what to do.
I know I got pre-broken kids, but once they get tweenish I think learning how to be supportive of other people's hurt without being used is something I want them to learn. This is one place where I know I had an impact on Rowan, talking specifically about things that hurt me in ways that connected to his story and that he didn't address elsewhere, helping him learn how to take control of his own story and see that he was not at all alone in the world with sad secrets. So that at least was good.
I'll leave it alone after this, but like everyone else in these parts I'm reading The Warmth of Other Suns and just got to a part where there are quotes from people who moved to Chicago in the early waves of the Great Migration. The question is "What difficulties do you think a person from the South meets in coming to Chicago?" One answer was "Growing accustomed to being treated like people."
hmm, yeah, I should probably point out that she already knows some broken people but doesn't knows she knows them. I also get angry at the growups in harry potter sending him back every time...going to sleep. hi foolishmortal!
I have (irrationally! ha ha) negative feelings about Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality and the whole lesswrong crew.
Thanks for sticking up for Harry, Thorn! I would have tried and failed to write something like that.
I don't know anything about anything, but my vague sense is that people are broken in all kinds of horrible ways, and yet broken people often find ways to put themselves together, and sometimes somehow still manage to cope and even occassionally do great things.
"Man is born broken! He lives by mending! The grace of God is glue!"
I never liked glue, but that quote has always stayed with me
Wow: just after reading 13, this (slacktivist) popped up in my reader.
I realize the word "broken" has some useful specific meanings, and is being used here without prejudice, but I still wish we used something else - it always feels dehumanizing to me.
17.2 is a really good point. I always want to kick back against "broken," though I used it here because it was being used (as in heebie's post a week or so ago) and I think it's kind of weird because everyone gets chipped and dented along the way and deciding where the line for "broken" starts seems impossible and useless.
Thinking of you, al. And yes the "Blue" album can be intense. Why not "Raised on Robbery"?
He was sitting in the lounge of the Empire Hotel
He was drinking for diversion
He was thinking for himself
A little money riding on the Maple Leafs
Along comes a lady in lacy sleeves
"Let me sit down
You know, drinkin' alone's a shame
It's a shame, it's a crying shame
Look at those jokers
Glued to that damn hockey game"
And yes yes, "Court and Spark" is her poppiest album but it still sounds so good.
deciding where the line for "broken" starts seems impossible and useless.
I think the line could be pretty clear. You are broken when [that thing you are struggling with] makes the rest of your life non-functional, at least much of the time. Broken people typically end up dead or on the streets if they don't have anyone who will take them on as a dependent.
It needn't be permanent, of course. And as you note, chipped and dented is normal.
Alameida, you are a real-life example of the kind of love that I thought was only in stories; the kind where you hide your sacrifice and your pain, because you want to keep your loved ones innocent of it.
I am sure that when - some day - it is time to tell your children the painful things you have been hiding away, you will do it in a kind and gentle way, that helps them become stronger, and doesn't hurt them.
And when you mentioned Methods of Rationality, your story reminded me of this part when Harry has gone in front of the dementor:
Harry looked at them as they left, turned back to look at the other students. They'd seen him on the ground, screaming, and...[...]...and that would help them, someday, understanding that the Boy-Who-Lived could also be hurt, could be wretched. So that when they were hurt and wretched themselves, they would remember seeing Harry writhing on the ground, and know that their own pain and troubles didn't mean they'd never amount to anything. Had the Headmaster calculated that, when he had let the other students stay and watch?
Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality becomes pretty nasty part of the way through, IMO.
Were there a "like" button, I'd be clicking the one associated with 21. Well put and exactly right, Benquo.
16: "Man is born broken! He lives by mending! The grace of God is glue!"
Oh wearisome condition of Humanity!
Born under one law, to another bound.
Vainly begot and yet forbidden vanity,
Created sick, commanded to be sound:
20: It sounds clear-cut and simple enough, but what about the person that is able to function and hold a job, but is miserable and cruel every day of their life? And the person that seems fine and everyone likes until that one day...
I love Blue. I also love Court and Spark.
Sea Change is also excellent for wallowing.
My son is home for the weekend. We watched Donnie Darko.
This morning, we woke up and my dog cannot stand up. Her back legs have given out on her. BR and I continue to share her as she slowly dies. BR is out of town and this might be Memphis's last night.
23: What would you say the difference is between the nasty and not-nasty segments of the story?
26: not broken, by that definition. Doesn't mean they don't have problems, or damage.
27: Oh, will, that sucks and I am so sorry.
I love the way you describe your parenting. Sometimes it is a little raw and I have to skim over it. But, I almost always come back to read it.
I am on Team Love Reading Unfogged people describe their parenting and describe their children. Thorn, asilon, apo, LB, Di, Carp, Jroth, bitch, etc.
Thanks. When I called BR, she just cried bc she hadnt said goodbye. I am hoping that that memphis makes it until she gets back.
memphis and my daughter had an awesome time playing last night though.
I'm so sorry, will. While we seem to have had a reprieve with DogBreath, we're facing the same thing pretty soon and I'm dreading it.
will, I'm so sorry to hear about Memphis. I'm glad he's spending some quality time with you guys and I hope he holds out so BR can say goodbye. Losing a bet is so hard and sad. And you are high on the list of parents whose writing I love to read!
So sorry, will!
And to the OP: I'm glad you're posting here. I very much want to say something helpful, but nothing I can think of really qualifies, except that it does sound as if you've done a wonderful job protecting and nurturing Girls X and Y.
26: "Broken" has pretty clear definitions in other areas. Military units break and run, cars don't move, phones don't send or receive, and like that.
To apply it to a human seems like sloppy description unless they're on their death-bed.
32: Sorry, Will. That's hard to deal with. Best wishes.
I'm glad my dog is going to live forever.
39: Me. too.
To apply it to a human seems like sloppy description unless they're on their death-bed.
Because humans can always, always be repaired, improved, made like brand new again? Just a little TLC, the right drugs, some good talking at/to, and all surviving Sandy Hook kid survivors will be "normal" and indistinguishable from other kids?
America, the fucking therapeutic nation, loves stories of struggle with happy endings, and sends the irreparable to the landfill.
41: Fuck off, I'm not the optimist you're looking for.
42: Improved Dylan lyrics?
Oh geez, al. That's a hell of a gut-punch.
Sympathy for both Al and Will.
If there's sympathy being dished out, Jammies is out of town again and my life is so hard and I'd love some sympathy. I'm just very tired.
45: I'm sorry your life is so hard, heebie!
NMM to Memphis. She was an excellent dog. She loved my daughter. My daughter loved her.
I'm sorry, will. Memphis sounds excellent indeed!
so sorry about memphis, will! that's really awful. it is such a sad experience, even though you do know they are not going to live forever.
on saying people are broken, my daughter said someone would be "broken" if they were raised like that. we didn't go on to discuss her views on whether people can put themselves back together as grownups because I don't think she cares about the interior life of adults, and also I didn't want to talk about it. I don't personally think everyone's broken forever, though I think we all have to admit there's some limit case of closet under the stairs and pushing saltines under the door for a few years where no person emerges; we could reasonably call that "broken" from the point of view of a happy human. I think I'll continue the discussion with her another time to explain that it's not the most useful schema ever. I wasn't up to it. I still think it's right that even if harry potter were the sort of person who made friends easily and blossomed when taken out of the deep-sea pressure of his wretched home life (because the durselys do send him to public (i.e. state-run) school and maybe he has friends there, and sympathetic teachers, and experiences school as a respite), he still wouldn't trust the adults in the wizarding world. he just shouldn't, it doesn't even make sense.
I'm sorry, will. How's Maddie?
45: sorry heebie-geebie that you're on a solo parenting tip. that must be incredibly tiring right now, or indeed at any time.
45: That sucks. shiv's been out of town for the past month, and it sucks, but I don't know what I'd be doing if I had toddlers to wrangle on my own.
Maddie doesn't know. They had a great night together yesterday. I am happy for that. Maddie lives in the moment so I am not sure that she will experience grief about it. Ive been around tons of pets who died, but Im wallowing a bit more than normal. I think it has something to do with knowing that Maddie does not experience loss.
Anyway. Thanks for the nice thoughts.
It's funny, Al, I was just thinking as I read this that I can remember a specific period in high school, a month or two, when I was, or felt, definitively broken. (Not having gone through anything like you did. Some people break easily, I guess.) If anyone other than me was aware of this fact, they never let on.
We're good at putting up a good front. And we're not always good at seeing brokenness. I imagine when someday you tell Girls X and Y about some of the things you've survived, they won't see you as broken but as a superhero.
Will, I'm really sorry. That sucks.
And thanks for the votes of sympathy in my direction. For whatever reason, I'm in a wallowing mood where some (mild) sympathy is exactly what I need.
Heebie, I've only had my two solo for the last four hours or so and I'm impressed you can manage so much more than that without totally losing your mind, temper, or both. I'm headed toward the last option if Nia doesn't fall asleep soon.
63: Make some chocolate pudding! Fetus recommended, gravid approved.
Nia went to sleep! I credit heebie's superkoranic parenting powers. Now I can have a bath and finish my book and then I guess tidy up my eyebrows or something.
I'm so sorry, will.
68: what? be totally sympathetic. it's free.
er, as to the OP, I still feel like shit today. maybe I'll feel better tomorrow. I guess I partly think, how will they react to my mother when I do tell them; maybe they'll be really mad, right? and not want to talk to her? I wouldn't want that either. on a more positive note, they are for real filming a TV show starting in april, for SE asia distribution first, with the intention of broadcasting in the US if it works out. the director asked me "aside from you getting tired easily, is there anything we should know about?" my business partner and I looked at each other kind of helplessly. "uh...nope!" "and would you be free to meet this particular week?" me: "let me check my phone: 'pain doctor appt; neurologist; dentist; psychiatrist.' no, I'm pretty free, but not at [neurologist time], and I'd prefer afternoons. otherwise I'm easy." our helper asked me today "so how?" i.e. what the fuck do you think you're doing? don't know. diet pills? gaaach. but still, it'll be entertaining; we gotta give it a try.
Homemade pudding sounds delicious. Better than the M&Ms I ate while watching Market Warriors, which was still nice.
I'm sure Nia is sleeping in, right?
Nia slept in until 6, at which point she checked with me every 10 minutes or so until I let her start watching Netflix at 7. But I got to leave at 8:30 to read at a high school academic team tournament at Lee's old school and didn't even come home until almost 1. It was heaven!
Now if the girls ever quiet down and finish cleaning their rooms, I'll take them to see Mara's grandma's grave again and then to an indoor garden store and then I don't know what to give Lee nap time. But we have a babysitter tonight!
al, my history is pretty different from yours, but I do know what it's like to feel broken and damaged--even "damaged goods". Don't read the literature on caregiver attunement and attachment in the first year of life if you don't want to feel that one can be permanently doomed.
Sometimes I think that it's best to focus on the fact that a lot can be repaired. Other times when I look at piled up losses I think that it's best to say that it is damage and brokenness but that everyone has some. Some of the people who have a fair amount --not the most, but a fair amount -- but are in denial about it, are kind of jerks. I'm thinking of my uncle who probably suffered, because his mother was severely depressed, but he pushes that away and has turned himself into a Fox-news watching Republican who emphasizes that he did everything for himself, and we don't need any welfare programs etc. And some of the most humane people I've ever met are spiky Anglo-Catholics who are deeply aware of their own brokenness.
It's still a punch in the gut, though.
will--so sorry about your dog.