It took a little while but I’ve finally put together a little writing Patreon where I can share updates on my novel! I never thought I’d take the time out to make one but I think it will be a way for me to keep track of my writing and hopefully get myself published!
How does this work?
Taken From my Patreon Page:
About the Patreon This Patreon will not be used to gain funds for publishing the book as it is a current work in progress. Instead the tiers are separated by how much you are invested in them.
Updates will be bi-weekly and monthly and will include special additions to each tier.
As the novel nears closer to completion, higher reward tiers will be added for those who want extra bonuses.
About the Book The current working title is “A Sign of Times and Seasons” and falls under the Urban Fantasy/Erotica tags. If you’re not into either of those genres this book will not be for you. The book will also contain topics like:
Depression and Alcoholism
Sex (it is part erotica)
Navel-Gazing and Existential Pondering
Synopsis Imani Cross has noticed that her quiet town has gotten a little bit quieter recently. People are moving away and not a lot has been going on since she divorced her husband out of boredom. Alone and cut off from those she cared about most she tries to navigate the suddenly-empty world. Now if only she could shake those whispers in her ear and those awful headaches!And then there’s that mushroom ring in the park…
Pricing of Tiers
Because this novel is a work in progress I will only be charging $1, $2, and $3 tiers. Each level will have little perks such as official character art and special Q&A with different characters. I’m trying not to make too many perks with this until I really get the ball rolling. I do plan on adding things such as merch, pins, and naming characters/places after patrons who reach a certain level. I may add a $5 tier towards the end when I get closer to finishing the novel proper and start an official crowdfunding campaign in order to get my work published and in your hands as a reward for your dedication.
I plan on updating bi-weekly/monthly. Since I’m just one writer things can get a little hectic when I get writer’s block. I want to be sure I give myself enough time to gather up all my rewards and have them published on time. As I become more comfortable with coming up with rewards and scheduling new things, the quality of the Patreon will go up and hopefully it will become more enjoyable for everyone.
Every once and a while I’ll end up not updating until the very end of the month. This will usually be from me working through a block or working extra hard to have plenty of content to drop at once.
What You Can Expect
Since the novel is supernatural in nature there will be lots of little things littered about. You can expect to see things like:
Official Character Art
Q&A sessions for characters
I can’t share all the details since I want to keep lots of things secret in the hopes you’ll be more interested in the novel itself. I will probably release all the chapters I have written so far on so that way everyone is able to read what has happened so far.
I do plan on being heavily involved with my Patreon and I’ll do my best to interact with every single one of you so that way this doesn’t come across as impersonal. I’m a real person here writing in real time. I’m not a bot, I promise!
I think we have an obsession with revenge. We’ve got movies about it (I Spit on Your Grave, Kill Bill, John Wick), we’ve got songs about it (Better than Revenge- Taylor Swift, Gunpowder and Lead- Miranda Lambert, Fuck You- CeeLo Green), we’ve even got books about it (Count of Monte Cristo, just to name one). So when it comes to anime it’s no surprise that revenge is at least one character’s motivation. What happens when you make an entire series out of it?
Enter Enma Ai and Izuko (from Hellgirl and Skyhigh respectively) two female characters that know a thing or two about extracting vengeance with a relatively fair, but high cost. Let’s explore a dish that is best served cold—and no, I’m not talking about Phish Food from Ben & Jerry’s though you could be forgiven for thinking so.
Hell Girl- Jigoku Shojo
The Hell Girl anime (manga and live action adaption) is about a girl named Ai who works for the Hell Correspondence (Jigoku Tsushin) who is in the business of dragging off souls to hell as vengeance that someone wished upon them. The process is as follows:
At midnight a website called Hell Correspondence appears to people who are searching for revenge.
The person types in the name of the person that they want sent to hell.
They are asked if that’s what they really want. If they say yes…
Ai appears to them and gives them a straw doll with a red cord. They are told that if they want to send that person to hell all they have to do is untie the red string. But they are warned that while the person in question will be sent to hell, they too will be sent to hell after they die, no exceptions.
Well, you know the formula and most likely how it all pans out. Person is being mistreated and feels there’s no way out, calls up Hell Girl who says “Yeah I’ll do it but these are the terms” and the person takes her up on her offer and pulls the string. The (usually bad person) ends up getting sent to hell in a trippy ironic sequence and the victim is left to ponder how they’ll enjoy the rest of their lives when they know they’ll just go to hell when they die. Ai lights a candle representing the remaining time they have left and puts it on her altar.
Izuko is a gatekeeper of sorts who meets people who have met an unfortunate end (suicide/murder/etc) and she gives them 3 choices:
Ascend to heaven and be reincarnated in the next life.
Wander the earth as a ghost forever.
Extract revenge on whoever killed you and be sent to hell.
Oh, and did I mention you have 12 days to make your decision? She doesn’t interfere with the choices these souls make and remains mostly neutral and doesn’t interfere with the soul’s decision. Although she does tell one soul that her death couldn’t be helped and she might as well go to heaven and forget the pain.
The manga itself (written by Tsutomu Takahashi) is pretty straightforward and contemplative. You get to see the backstories of several souls and find out what killed them. You also get to see them contemplate their options and come to their final decision in confidence. It does a good job of showing people as…well…people. The author seems aware that the mind has difficulty grasping with the concepts of life and death as some souls have a hard time understanding that they have died.
The later manga have MUCH shorter chapters where you don’t really get to see what the soul decides to do. It becomes a tad bit jarring when you’re used to seeing fleshed out stories and then it suddenly cuts off at the climax. I’ll chalk it up to artistic storytelling. The suspense allows you to fill in the gaps with your own interpretation.
So, what about that dish?
What do I think about revenge? Is it overrated? Underrated? I’m kind of on the fence. Sometimes you have to really think about the nature of your revenge. In SkyHigh, the people who show up at the Gate of Grudges are already dead and have died from accidents or murders. In Hell Girl, the victims are still living and are forced to reckon with the possibility of actual eternal damnation. You can’t really compare these fairly, but it does make you think.
In my experience, getting revenge is hard. You have to either get it instantly the moment you’re humiliated or otherwise it becomes a long drawn out revenge saga with no catharsis in the end. The further you get from the event, the more the feelings build up with the hopes of a big payoff. And the chances of the payoff vary HEAVILY upon the experience in question.
I largely forgo revenge for a number of reasons. One of them being that I’m not John Wick and my life is not some epic revenge story.
Another reason is that ACTIONS HAVE CONSEQUENCES. I don’t think that I have to really explain that statement. This isn’t to say that you can’t get justice by taking people to court or settling your accounts and cutting people out of your life. It’s honestly just easier to get therapy and move on with your life the best you can. Trauma is real. Pain is real. Life does some pretty nasty things to its participants. In the end, none of us finish our lives unscathed and we don’t measure the quality of it by our traumas and hurts.
When faced with the possibility of taking revenge, think about it over a pint of ice cream. By the time you finish it, you may find that the only dish best served cold is some Phish Food by Ben & Jerry’s.
So, once again my absence has been noticed and I’m once again forced to explain myself. Took a little bit too much time off the top of the year and nowI have a 3 month deficit of content that I haven’t bothered making.
Your Honor, in my defense he was distracting me.
Well, the truth is a lot less interesting. You see, I’ve been in school—no really. I’ve been working on a bachelors degree and it took up all of my time. All of my creative energy was thrown 100% into my coursework and watching the same Blasphemous play through at least 11 times.
But now my classes are over and I have officially graduated—well we didn’t have a ceremony with caps and gowns but we got an email of congratulations from our college. Just take my word for it, it was very underwhelming.
So. Now I’m back with lowered expectations and the creeping feeling that my jokes about all anime being trash are actually a little bit more true than I thought. In my time away I have:
Binged Avatar the Last Airbender
Watched all 4 seasons of HunterXHunter on Netflix
Finished up the final season of Bojack Horseman
Started watching Yu-Yu Hakusho
Finished up the latest season of RWBY
Watched Atlantis: The Lost Empire and Treasure Planet back to back every day for a week.
That’s just what I can remember off of the top of my head.
Will I be expounding upon my feelings for each item in a separate blog post? Unlikely. Will I be scrounging around for scraps of exposition to toss in these posts? Also unlikely. Do I know where I’ll be going from here? I have a small idea. But thanks for hanging with me while I clear this system and start again.
I was honestly going to write about cosplay meltdowns today but I decided not to. Cosplay is fun, but not necessary to enjoy a good weekend. I also don’t have enough experience with making my own cosplays to start giving out actual advice.
<insert image with caption “I gotta get my street cred up>
Instead we will discuss more room etiquette and how to NOT catch Con-Plague because that’s what I’m good at!
In an earlier post I talked about what to do when rooming at a convention, today I am adding to that. You know all about broke friends and sleeping arrangements. Now get ready for:
WASH YOUR ASS! This should go without saying. There’s no reason why you can’t shower in a hotel room that offers you soap and water for bathing. You have everything you need right at your disposal; this is a ball I can’t believe some of you drop every fucking year.
You don’t have any excuses. Not staying clean spreads germs and starts pandemics. I have this theory that a zombie apocalypse will start at an anime convention because some jackass didn’t wash their hands. Don’t be that jackass.
Stay organized! Don’t leave your shit laying about. Repack your suitcase, bring hangers to use that closet space! Put your clothes in the drawers where the tv stand is! Don’t trip! You’re an adult!
Get some sleep! Your body doesn’t work the way it used to. You will surely die if you don’t sleep! I usually recommend 6 hours MINIMUM for full grown adults. I personally clock in around 8 because I can’t function after around 23:30 or so.
Stay hydrated! Drink plenty of water and throw a mini Gatorade somewhere in there. You’ll function at full power if you hydrate properly.
Bring cleaning supplies! Those glasses in your hotel room aren’t as clean as you think! Bring some dish soap to clean your dishes at the hotel room. Housekeeping does their best to come to every room but even they miss details. I personally bring:
-Febreeze (to freshen up the sheets)
Agree on a room temperature! I haven’t run into this too much since I usually have enough blankets for whatever the room temp is supposed to be. If some people get colder more easily, make sure the room is a comfortable temperature. Usually I go 5-10 degrees colder than the hottest temp outside for summer weather.
Store your props carefully! This also goes without saying. You want to avoid breaking precious cargo? Don’t leave it out if you can help it!
Plan Your Con Days!
Usually a con schedule is released a few weeks in advance to attendees. This should give you enough enough time to decide what panels you want to show up for. Most of these can be split into a few sections:
Viewings (watching anime episodes, movies, line dubbing)
Concerts/Contests (sometimes involves standing and jumping
Game Rooms (usually sitting, but depending on what kind of games you play; your activity level will be different)
With this information you can choose how to spend your day. Most people go Hard Mode™️ on Saturday Night where there’s the most activity and use Sunday for the recovery day.
On Saturday there’s usually the rave, cosplay contests (final round), and concerts. If you plan on staying up for these activities you’ll usually want to go easy during the day so you have energy to make it through the night. Wear your best (read: comfortable) shoes and get hydrated because you’ll need it.
Last Day Damages
At first I didn’t say this because I didn’t think I needed to; but after thinking about it I’ll say it: don’t damage con property! This includes your hotel room, elevators, hallways—ALL OF IT! Just Google “Katsucon Damages” and you’ll understand what I’m talking about. For backstory: Katsucon 2016 had HELLA damage. I’m leaving it at that. Click the link for yourself.
I’m not sure how it happens but people get a few days off of work and the temperature rises a few degrees and suddenly a bunch of ya’ll lose your gotdamn minds. I’m not sure what’s so fun about punching holes in doors or slapping the back of exit signs but our hotel prices keep going up and that’s going to be a problem really soon. Like…six months from now scratch that and make it 3. I’ve already seen ACen room prices ticking upward and security is getting tighter. GET YOUR ACT TOGETHER!
Check Your Ego at the Door
Ever since people started dressing up in costumes it seems like somebody had to ruin the fun for the rest of us. If you’ve been alive long enough you’ll come to notice that dressing up as your favorite character isn’t quite as fun as it used to be.
Why is that?
Short answer: egos.
Cosplay is often a place where people get to show off their craftsmanship and sewing skills. And why not? Nothing says you love a character like emulating them as much as possible! Normally this is fun! But somewhere along the way people got sidetracked by their own egos.
Have the same costume as someone else?
Someone “not your aesthetic” wearing a costume you don’t think they should be wearing?
Someone getting more attention than you?
Cosplayer doesn’t want to shoot with you or be your significant other?
Lo and behold the spirit of strife and suffering is upon you because you can’t mind your own business!
Nothing ruins a good time like some elitist acting like the Cosplay Police™️ saying shit nobody asked for. Nobody. Nobody wants to hear your opinion on their cosplay! Unless they’re in competition, you shouldn’t be giving out unsolicited opinions. You don’t like it? Move on. Close your eyes. Fuck off to nowhere.
Don’t comment on people’s bodies. Don’t comment on their ability level.Don’t compare cosplayer’s to each other. Don’t comment on cosplayer’s skin color. Don’t comment on cosplayer’s weight.
Read that bold statement above. Memorize it. Write it on index cards. I don’t care what you do, you’d better be able to say this shit in your sleep. Stop fucking with people. I don’t know when some of you became such dramaholics and general festering piles of garbage but it’s time to put an end to it. There will be a day one of you puss-oozing ass clowns will be forced to swallow your teeth because you messed with the wrong person.
Leave people alone. Swallow that ego before it gets too big and you choke on it. At some point you will be force-fed your own words in the forms of: screen shots, video recordings and lawsuits. Good fucking luck lying your way out of a court hearing when your own Facebook posts, Instagram comments, and Tweets come back to haunt you. Keep your words soft and sweet everybody!
By the time you hit 25 you’re too grown to be playing these telephone games and should already be an expert at minding your own business. If you can’t keep your (trash) opinions to yourself and enjoy the weekend like a normal person, do you really need to be at a con? If you constantly find yourself in drama you might want to rethink your life entirely. You can’t be around people without rumors starting up maybe you need to…go somewhere else?
Life doesn’t end at 25 but criminy it can feel like it! You can still have fun at anime conventions even if you can’t do a steady diet of ramen and Jack Daniels. Part of it is knowing your limits and weaknesses and working around them.
If you like my writing, please consider buying me a ko-fi sometime!
Here we go again with another segment on anime personalities and why they do not translate to real life. Today’s model personality (and an EXTREMELY popular one at that) is the yandere and what makes them so damn appealing. Grab your knives and turn off your cellphones because she’s likely tracked your location and she is on her way to your house.
What is a Yandere?
Yandere (ヤンデレ) is derived from the Japanese word yanderu (病んでる) which means “insane” or “sick” and deredere (デレデレ) which means affectionate. Put those two words together and you have someone who literally sick/insane with “love” for another person and laundry list of problems that are only beginning and will, in fact, get so much worse.
The Yandere is (usually) a female character who is in love with someone who is often the main character. Since this is often a female trope I will use the pronouns she/her throughout this post. Her love is characterized by her willingness to do anythingto prove her love to the object of her affection. And by anything we mean ANYTHING.Stalking, kidnapping, (attempted) murder are not stricken from the list. If she wants you, she will have you at ANY COST. She may or may not have a body count (dead or alive), several social media accounts, and maybe a burner phone along with diaries or a stalker shrine. And more often than not, she has a very cute appearance.
On the surface, most Yanderes are fairly well put together, likable, and unassuming and usually friendly people…that is until they develop a love interest. In anime they take the forms of characters such as the notorious Yuno Gasai:
Possibly tied for first with Kotonoha Katsura:
And then there’s this bitch:
You have to watch the anime to get the full scope of why she’s terrifying. She’s played for laughs.
Through my personal observations and some help from Captain Obvious I’ve noticed that in spite of the very terrible things these characters do (Yuno drugs and kidnaps Yuki, Kotonoha kills her rival and her love interest), they still have an even more dedicated fanbase. Even though these characters are in dire need of therapy and commitment to an institution, the predominantly male fanbase goes fucking nuts over them.
Who is a Yandere?
Technically anyone can be a yandere if they get desperate enough. Get rejected “one too many times”? Can’t get someone off your mind and refuse to deal with it in a healthy way? Got entitlement issues? You’re a Yandere in the making and you might want to seek help?
Why is a Yandere?
Why are they like this? In anime they’re usually given a tragic backstory that gains audience sympathy. You don’t agree with her actions but you’ve developed an understanding. Double those points if you can see yourself doing similar things if you were in their situation. Sometimes they’re used for comedic effect like Juvia from Fairy Tail.
Sometimes they’re the Token Evil Teammate who is only around to protect their love interest from anyone who is a rival—which is pretty much everyone who is NOT them. They are prone to wildly inappropriate behavior which includes (but is not limited to):
Taking pictures of said person without their knowledge.
Kidnapping or paying someone to kidnap their love interest
Attempting to isolate their LI, usually done by spreading rumors or emotionally/financially abusing them
Sexually harassing/assaulting them
Stealing items that belong to said person
Continuing unwanted contact (creating multiple social media accounts to continue interactions)
And this largely gets swept under the rug because they are attractive. Case and point:
I found this on the Facebook page Eccentric Weeaboo where the poster cleverly shares the events with the caption “Real Life Yandere You Say”?
The story according to Tokyo Reporter is a woman stabbed the man twice and was prepared to kill herself when the police caught her. I will not link the aftermath photo to avoid the squeamish aspects. I will also not be linking the comments that state the various levels of admiration and the *ahem* things they’d like to have this woman do to them and vice versa. I will however share this post because it encompasses my collective confusion at some of ya’ll:
How are Yanderes?
The collection of “what the fuck-ness” that is my brain continues to baffle me while reading the comments on these posts. I’m not entirely sure why men are this way towards cute female characters that would in fact kill them to keep them. In the case of this woman, I would dare say that Japense fetishization plays HEAVILY in the roll of wishing to have a yandere gf, but that’s a post for another day and ya’ll ain’t ready for this.
As long as the person in question is attractive, all sorts of behaviors can be excused due to pretty bias. It’s a psychological thing where you associate beauty with goodness and your cognitive dissonance erases anything resembling common sense because you’re stupid. That’s it. Stupidity. Your stupid horny ass is going to get you killed.
While being a dumbass sucks, it’s kind of understandable. After all, a yandere’s obsession can often be seen as love to some people. And honestly, the appeal of someone being willing to do anything to protect you and keep your happiness in the forefront of their minds sounds like an ideal loving relationship–at first. Unhealthy relationship expectations, inexperience, and low self esteem are pitfalls that make people vulnerable to these kinds of people. And then there are people who actively pursue this sort of thing.
I’m not here to tell you where to stick your dick, but I’m also suggesting that you don’t bed crazy or actively pursue it. The Yandere personality translated to real life is terrifying with tragic results. A quick Google search will turn up no shortage of articles on “spurned lovers” who “snapped” and killed the objects of their obsession and caused TONS of collateral damage as a result. I also understand that not everyone is like this. The comments sections of articles of beautiful women committing crimes is full of people who understand the despicableness of their actions and hold them accountable.
When are Yanderes?
When are Yanderes acceptable? By acceptable I mean “when are yandere’s seen as love-interests and when are they creepy?” There are two rules that are consistently followed:
They have a backstory with enough audience sympathy to make their actions seem “not as bad” or justifiable/understandable based on their plight.
They are attractive, almost to a fault. The ones I’ve seen in media are often quiet and unassuming, often nice or polite. They are pretty, nice to look at, and have nice voices.
In real life this sometimes translates and sometimes doesn’t. Female stalking (a stock yandere behavior) is often seen as a sign of mental illness and is usually unacceptable. This is explored in the video “Stalking for Love” by Pop Culture Detective.
There are several videos that explore this and similar concepts that get portrayed in media as positive when they actually shouldn’t and also happen to be textbook yandere behaviors:
Yanderes in real life are obsessive, controlling, and abusive individuals. Making multiple social media accounts to “check up on” or stay in contact with people who do not want to be in contact with you is not healthy. Threatening to hurt yourself or others is also wrong. The best thing you can do for yourself when you’re rejected is to back off and move on with your life. Some therapy wouldn’t hurt either.
Are YOU the Yandere?
Maybe you’ve noticed while reading this that some of your behaviors fall along these lines. What do you do when you’ve been obsessively stalking someone? What do you do when you’re three accounts deep and people have receipts? You’ve recognized your behavior and you want to stop it.
First of all, I’m not your psychologist or your therapist so I can’t actually give you the best advice you need to change and rectify your behaviors. I’m also not studying psychology or anything in that field so I’m not an expert on these things. The only thing I can do is point you in the right direction. So here are a few bits of food for thought:
Schedule an appointment with a doctor/psychologist/therapist as soon as possible. If you’re unable to schedule with a professional, the next best thing is to join a support group for people with obsessive behaviors.
Delete your extra social media accounts. You don’t need them.
Look for and practice healthy behaviors that will help your mental health.
Seeking help is your first step to recovery and developing a health sense of self and relationships.
If you liked reading this buy me a ko-fi sometime!
Per my last post I covered the beginning basics of attending Anime Conventions when you’re Over the Hill. It’s time for us to continue. Please insert coins.
You now know how to deal with friends and make sure you get paid for the room. Your next step is to figure out a food budget for the weekend. It’s difficult but not entirely impossible to eat well during a con and hopefully I can help you figure out how to do so. You may be tempted to hit up cafes or local restaurants in order to soothe the rumblies…until you realize the prices are jacked up everywhere you go and EVERYONE HAD THE SAME IDEA AS YOU.
Con food is expensive and I say that with full confidence. It doesn’t even taste that great nor is it that filling. My first trip to Anime Central left me feeling empty from the lackluster food choices they had for catering. That and every restaurant in a 5 mile radius will inevitably be full of people in costumes clamoring for calories and I bet you don’t want to deal with that slaughterhouse. So to avoid all this we need to find some alternatives:
The easiest to get a hold of and easiest to fix. Most hotel rooms have a microwave and using reusable bowls ensure there’s little trash left over. They come in a variety of flavors and there are different kinds of pre-packaged noodles you can purchase.
Apples and Oranges and Bananas
These fruits travel well and can be eaten quickly on the go. They’re a perfect pick-me-up when you’re out and about and are super nutritious.
Pre-packaged oatmeal can make a nice breakfast. They usually come in portioned out packets that can either me heated up in the microwave or have hot water poured over them. Having a portable kettle is helpful for this one.
Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are a surprisingly satisfying meal on their own. The peanut butter gives you protein and the jelly adds some sweetness. Sandwiches are a gift to starving con attendees.
Protein Bars/Trail Mix/Popcorn
Snacking in between meals is IMPORTANT. Always have a power bar or a bag of trail mix on your person. The last thing you’ll want to do is leave a panel early because you’re feeling like you’ll pass out. If possible eat a snack every hour and set a reminder on your phone to remind yourself to stay well-fed.
You might need to hold onto your seats for this one: potatoes are a good option. If you like baked potatoes and aren’t afraid to bring them to your hotel room you can make some baked potatoes in the microwave. If you want a recipe, click here.
If you want to eat a little fancier there are other options, just make sure you have a surge protector:
Using a pressure cooker/crockpot to make foods like chili, soups, stews, and taco meat. You can click here for some ideas. You can also bring a rice cooker.
If you have a mini fridge you might be able to get some sandwich supplies in there (meat, veggies, cheese).
potato chips and dip
Make sure you’re following hotel room protocol and clean up after yourself. Organize your meal times around your expected con schedule to make sure everyone is well fed. To keep costs down everyone should contribute equally to the food selections. I also suggest bringing reusable bowls and utensils to cut down on waste. Bring dish soap and a sponge to clean bowls afterwards.
Drinking happens at cons. Room parties get started and the booze flows like the Nile river. So if you plan on drinking at all you’ve got to prepare yourself to deal with drunk people and being drunk yourself. I’ll lay out a few ground rules for drinkers of all levels and then specific tips for those levels individually.
Make sure you eat before and while you’re drinking.
Always hold onto your drink. Don’t give it to anyone. If you don’t feel like drinking anymore, pour it out.
Stay with friends and avoid drinking alone. Make sure everyone has everyone’s phone numbers and phones are charged.
Never let anyone leave alone with anyone.
Avoid mixing alcohol and drugs.
If you’re underage, don’t drink. It will cause problems.
Don’t pressure others to drink if they don’t want to.
If you don’t want to drink, DON’T DRINK. If you’re feeling pressure, it’s okay to leave those people and go elsewhere.
KNOW YOUR LIMITS! If you’re not sure what they are, A CONVENTION IS NOT THE PLACE TO TEST THEM.
Always know where the toilet is.
If someone is making your friend feel uncomfortable, HELP THEM OUT AND INTERVENE. Leave together or (if you’re hosting in your room) kick the perp out. If you’re at a party, tell the host who the creep is before you leave. Hopefully they’ll listen and kick them out.
Don’t let minors drink.
Whether you just turned 21 or don’t drink regularly there’s a few rules to help you navigate the world of drinking at cons. I mostly dislike being sloppy drunk and not being in control of myself so I have to limit my alcohol intake regularly.
Hang out with likeminded people. If you don’t drink a lot or just have a few for social reasons, it’s always great to be around people who have similar interests. If a glass of wine will do it for you and a group of friends, great! Drinking isn’t a personality trait and hangovers aren’t fun.
Decide what kind of drinks you want ahead of time. If you only want a rum and coke, don’t do shots. If there’s a party bartender, let them know how much alcohol you want in your drink. They’re usually pretty nice about this, especially if you tip them a dollar.
Have a bottle of water handy. Alcohol dehydrates you and waking up with cotton mouth is gross. If you only have a few (1-2) drinks you might not have to worry about this much.
You have the option to not drink at all. Not drinking is a valid choice.
If you’re not comfortable drinking in large groups you can just have an intimate pajama party with friends in the hotel room and drink there. You’re with people you know, you know where the bathroom is, and there’s no pressure.
If you’re about that age where you can’t drink like you used to, or know your way around a bar you might be intermediate. Many of the rules from beginners applies here as well. You’re probably familiar with hangovers and have a few stories to tell about wild things that happen. Some rules that apply to your level are:
Know your limits but don’t (try to) surpass them.
Look out for your inexperienced friends.
Make sure you all go in with a plan and stick to it. Nobody gets left behind!
If one friend overdoes it, party is over. Everyone leaves and friend gets taken care of. This sounds harsh and a bit of a downer, but it really means a whole lot when everyone gathers around to help a fallen friend.
If you’re an expert drinker you’ve probably seen/done it all. From throwing up to stumbling home you’ve covered a fair number of bases and probably have that one brand of alcohol that reminds you of a time you nearly died. Guess what? You’ve got rules too!
If you’re the friend who is well-known for getting wasted, this is not exactly a good thing. I’ll let you in on a secret: nobody likes you when you’re sloppy drunk and need a babysitter. Even if you can take care of yourself you’re a liability to others. Moderate yourself.
Don’t start fights! If you know you’re getting drunk under the table and you’re not exactly sure what’s going on, the last thing you need is to fight somebody. If you know you’re prone to do this, moderate yourself.
Don’t try to fuck anyone. If you’ve been drinking and feel like hooking up with someone, wait until you’re sober.
If you know you tend to get loose lips when you’ve been drinking, you may want to rethink your entire strategy or avoid drinking altogether. Like the Beginner Drinker you may want to stick to just drinking with friends or not drinking at all. Drinking is not a personality trait. The last thing you need to do is have drama erupt over something “Drunk You” said. Believe it or not Drunk You and Sober You are the same person and you’re responsible for them.
Believe it or not some people attend cons just to get laid. I remember a guy asking me if I knew any single girls he could hook up with for the night. Yeah…that actually happened. That said if you’re a grown and responsible adult we should get around to tackling the subject of hooking up at conventions, because lets face it: that stuff happens.
If you and someone plan on hooking up it’s best to be prepared so I have a checklist you’ll want to cover:
Make sure the person you’re banging wants to bang you and they’re in your age range. This goes without saying. Consent is just the standard. Minors cannot consent. End of story.
What are the room rules? If the room says no hooking up, don’t do it. The last thing you want is to deal with a friend getting mad at you for not following the rules.
Do you have protection? Always use protection peeps. If the person you want to bang doesn’t want to use protection, let them go. They aren’t worth the risk.
Know your status.
Don’t feel pressured to put out if you don’t want to. Make sure you’re with people who respect your decision.
Keep it private. Exhibitionism is a kink that can get you registered as a sex offender.
Do communicate properly to all parties involved. Do not do anything not already agreed upon.
Make sure to take precautions to avoid injury and damage to yourself, your parter(s), and any objects in the room you don’t want damaged. Don’t damage or use items that are not yours.
Make sure to enjoy yourself. If things don’t go according to plan, it’s okay!
Don’t cheat on your SO(‘s).
I didn’t have as much to say about this because it all speaks for itself. You know what the rules are, follow them! Hooking up isn’t necessary to have a good time, but hey–whatever rocks your boat.
I’m going to have to make a separate post for cosplay meltdowns and how to take care of your hotel room because it would take up way too much space here. Plus this post isn’t embellished enough. I’m going to have to fix that one.
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Ever since Overwatch launched in 2016 I was rather interested in the FPS game, which was odd considering I can’t play a FPS to save my life. As I looked at the roster of characters from around the globe and their various abilities I couldn’t help but notice a rather glaring detail missing: nowhere to be seen was an unambiguously black woman from any of the 22 countries mentioned in game.
This made me pause for a second but I continued trying to figure out if I could ever get away with playing Widowmaker on King’s Row when there was already a Hanzo (newsflash: I couldn’t). But as hero reveal begat hero reveal I could feel my heart getting slowly crushed as I realized that nowhere to be found was a hero that looked like me. But where were the dark skinned women?
Ana arrived, then came Sombra, Orisa, and Doomfist. Still no black women. I was confused, Overwatch was an organization of freedom fighters from around the world…why weren’t any black women on the roster? What was Blizzard’s excuse? Well…they kept silent for a while with various teases:
And then this showed up:
What you see above is alternate character art for the infamous Nerf or Nothing hero Mercy. My first initial thought was why didn’t they use this? This would’ve been AMAZING! But little did I know that this was little more than epic foreshadowing of the worst varieties.
By the time Moira had been released in November of 2017 I had just had it with the game. When Brigette was released I had stopped playing entirely. I was in disbelief for a while and I stopped entirely. I was no longer surprised and just expected nothing. I was no longer playing the game, it didn’t really matter.
I had almost forgotten about it completely until Ashe showed up. This was by far the most rage-inducing character, not because she was a LoL knockoff.
The real kicker was when I saw her alternative art:
I’d also like to mention alternative character art that got referenced earlier because this was wild. Ashe had alternative character art that depicts a quite clearly dark skinned character that did not get used. Why? Apparently Blizzard had an answer for this here. And upon inspection it appears that they’re answering a question…except they’re not.
They don’t explain why there weren’t any black women heroes in the beginning of the game. They don’t explain why they didn’t use dark skinned character designs and instead opted for a “palpable yet bland” (my words) lighter skinned variety. Why do I say palpable? Well…it seems that Blizzard thinks lighter skinned characters are more relatable/popular with their fanbase and they made three white female heroes in a row—Hamtaro on Steroids notwithstanding. Honestly? What am I supposed to think? Honestly, who cares about McCree’s ex-wife, Great Value Miranda Lambert?
So here we are, 2019 and three years into a game that takes characters from across the globe…with no unambiguous and unapologetic black women in sight. I should clarify what I mean when I say”unambiguously and unapologetically black”, but all other black nerds out there know exactly what I mean so I won’t waste space here.
And just recently I was stopped by this video by Overwatch’s Twitter which appears to be teasing a black femme character named Sojourn. Turns out a while later that Sojourn is a cannon character. And now many black femme gamers are excited
Turns out a while later that Sojourn is a cannon character. And now many black femme gamers are excited at the likelihood that she will be present in game. While I normally would be excited about this I realize that this is coming three years after the game’s release with a company that ultimately decided that black women were an afterthought. We’re talking about a company that somehow decided that League of Legends was their competition and can’t answer their fans questions. They also can’t seem to ban racist people off their platform fast enough:
Everything about this gets me. Even if they were to come up with a somewhat believable excuse (there isn’t) as to why they can’t have black women in the game yet (i.e. they have a super secret society made up of entirely black women) it still comes off extremely sloppy and poorly handled at best. I brought up that black women should’ve been on the roster from the get-go and I stand by that. We have black women in the forefront leading the way on so many social justice issues already, did Blizzard really just ignore that fact? There’s no excuse for it. There are black women all over the world, Overwatch has characters from all over the globe…what happened?
Blizzard as a company willfully ignored and insulted their fanbase by not adding black women in a game that has so many intersecting identities…and seem like they’re trying to “save the best for last”. But they’re not “saving the best for last”. The best should have been first. The best should have been right there on the original roster of heroes from launch day. I can’t really forget about that nor can I abide by that.
If and when they unveil the black femme hero we’ve all been waiting for I’ll probably applaud from the sidelines; but I’m unlikely to pick up my controller again.
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