Oakland-based hip-hop group Los Rakas released a new album this week called, "El Negrito Dun Dun & Ricardo." It's the fifth album for the bilingual duo, and perhaps their most political work yet. This video for the single "Sueño Americano" takes direct aim at America's broken immigration system. The lyrics are in Spanish, but you can read a translation after the jump.
Today’s Audible Daily Deal is The Double Helix: A Personal Account of the Discovery of the Structure of DNA ($9.55 Kindle,
So having gone to sleep on a mythological bent, I ended up with a fair bit of Patricia Wrede's short story about the frying pan of doom bouncing about the dream landscape, which was still the Giant's Causeway (but clearly where it borders the Enchanted Forest).
And then when I woke up my radio alarm was playing the song Call Me Maybe, which I ended up hearing/dreaming as the daleks version of the song as I went back into snooze land.
(I just met you, and this is a crazy! I'm a Dalek, ex-ter-mi-nate!)
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Dreaming about Patricia's Wrede's story made me somewhat crave after battle triple chocolate helmet cake, even if mostly I was interviewing kitchen maids who kept being hidden princesses in disguise, but it turned out one of them could really cook so it was ok.
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So one of the tours of the Giant's Causeway is actually the Game of Thrones tour of Northern Ireland. (There is a 1 day option, which is all I'd have time for). I am embarrassed by how tempting that is, and trying to justify it to myself as the "interesting historical scenery with an added geeky bonus" tour.
Now I'm reading The Round House by Louise Erdrich and really enjoying it. About a crime on a reservation in North Dakota and the narrator, the victim's son, reacting to it. There's a lot of great stuff about family and friendship, not to mention issues about crimes that happen to Indian people.
After that I'm going to read The Crossing Places by Elly Griffiths, a mystery somebody recommended.
I've also seen Captain America 2 twice now, and I found it . . . surprisingly deep, I guess? It's up there with the first Iron Man and The Avengers for me (and might be better than either of them, objectively speaking). The Russo brothers were a gutsy choice of director, and the political statement of the film is sort of shockingly radical for a big budget Hollywood superhero film. I found this Mother Jones article about the film very interesting (spoilery), as well as this Daily Kos essay about the real meaning of the phrase "winter soldier" during the Vietnam era (and again during the second Iraq war). I don't know that I expected the film to be as thought-provoking as I found it.
Sadly, genre expectations are probably going to prevent a lot of people from realizing what the film is actually saying. Still, I'm pleased with the franchise for going there.
I might've also had an Avengers 'verse plotbunny, like kind of a big one. It started from a conversation with yamx in which she asked me who I wished would run for president in two years, and I said, "Steve Rogers, duh." And then one thing led to another, as these things do, and suddenly I had the premise for a story in which Steve decides to run for president out of disgust with American electoral politics and convinces Tony to be his running mate, despite Tony's protests that he is entirely unelectable (which, let's face it, he is). And then they have epic fights about campaign finance reform. This fic needs to get in line, though, because I have Reverse Big Bang, and then I have the hockey/figure skating fic, and I still really want to write the OT4 follow-up.
Speaking of hockey, playoffs start Thursday. It looked like the Hawks were going to be facing off with the Avs in the first round, which spelled disaster since they haven't managed to beat them a single time all season, but now they're facing off with the Blues instead. That's going to be a brutal series, but they probably have a better chance of making it past the first round now at least. Roommate C has expressed cautious optimism.
I think they must have put an extra pump of sugar free caramel syrup in my coffee this morning. This is way sweeter than it usually is.
Me: "Don't we both have Friday off this week? We can go shopping then."
Toby: "Good call. Crisis averted."
I do find it very odd that my employer gives Good Friday off, but not Easter Sunday. Not that I'm working Easter Sunday this year, but I've done it in years past.
I get being bummed because your dick isn't going to get polished. But sulking, sighing, giving someone the silent treatment, and refusing to look at the other person isn't being bummed. That's being an asshole.
So we're all on board with that.
I was googling passive-aggressive-tantrums about sex, because sulking is throwing a passive aggressive tantrum. Clear as day. It's punishing a partner because you aren't getting what you want.
What surprised me is the amount of articles that stated passive aggressive sexual behavior can only be when one partner REFUSES sex. None of the articles I read talked about passive aggressive behavior used to GET sex.
That's some bullshit right there.
But it did make me wonder - was I passive aggressive because I refused to have sex? It seems to the key point is that passive aggressive behavior is a way to NOT talk about the issue. A way to dance all around it.
Well, I rarely danced around the issue. I was always extremely clear about not wanting to have sex, why I didn't want to have sex, and that I wasn't going to have sex. Direct words and all.
But was I being passive aggressive with the ACTION of withholding sex, especially since a huge part of the reason I didn't want to have sex was because I didn't feel he'd earned it?
Is sex about EARNING sex?
Seriously, why is sex so fucking complicated?
(Also, why do people - men - feel that sulking is a way to get sex? It's basically training your girlfriend to have a Pavlovian response of resentment and disgust towards your dick. THIS WILL NOT GET YOU LAID.)
My friend posted this doozy of a poem the other day:
Fairy tales are full of impossible tasks:
Gather the chin hairs of a man-eating goat,
Or cross a sulphuric lake in a leaky boat,
Select the prince from a row of identical masks,
Tiptoe up to a dragon where it basks
And snatch its bone; count dust specks, mote by mote,
Or learn the phone directory by rote.
Always it’s impossible what someone asks—
You have to fight magic with magic. You have to believe
That you have something impossible up your sleeve,
The language of snakes, perhaps, an invisible cloak,
An army of ants at your beck, or a lethal joke,
The will to do whatever must be done:
Marry a monster. Hand over your firstborn son.
It made me wonder what impossible things we’ve all done. When did you defeat the monster in its lair? When did you think something was going to be impossible, only to look up a year later and realize you’d done it already, you’d survived? WHAT ARE YOU KICKING ASS AT THESE DAYS? Tell us your proud moments, people.
I know how I got through this when I was learning Japanese. It was by reading tons of manga, and tons of Fujimi Orchestra novels.
But the kind of things that I want to read in Chinese -- manga, and cheesy romance novels, and fantasy novels -- are mostly in traditional characters, which are even more painfully slow for me to read than simplified characters. (And I suspect there are some mainland vs. Taiwan dialect differences that are causing me problems too.) And the materials aimed at Chinese learners are mostly too easy for me by this point.
I suspect this will probably work out for me similarly to how it worked out in Japanese, where I buy a lot of books I don't end up reading in the quest for something both interesting enough and easy enough, and eventually things get easier, bit by bit.
But I sure wish that the nearest really good Chinese bookstore wasn't all the way in Flushing. (The ones in Chinatown keep closing!)