It's applicable to how I feel right now: running around in what feels like an increasingly incomprehensible mission, wondering if I'm missing something absolutely essential to this whole life process... probably I just need a nice nap and someone to clean that kitchen for me.
Anyway! Shows are coming back to TV. I finally gave up on This Is Us. I enjoyed all five episodes I watched from season one, and I adored seeing Sterling K. Brown onscreen, but I just didn't think about the show when I didn't take deliberate steps to watch it. Instead I whiled away my time with frivolities like The Good Place--and apparently that started last night, so I think I'll go watch 2.01 before I get completely spoiled by the internet for any/all juicy details.
Inspired by Mark Watches, I've been rewatching Person of Interest season one. This is partly in the hope that I'll feel inspired to complete one of those unfinished fanfics I have on the computer. No show since then has brought that level of fannish inspiration. I literally haven't finished a new fanfic on my own in, er, three and a half years? Which, not so coincidentally, is two months after the departure of a character from PoI, so... hence the hope that watching the parts from before that exit will inspire me.
Today is the anniversary of the Long-Expected Party celebrating the
eleventy-first birthday of Bilbo Baggins and the coming of age of Frodo
Baggins in The Lord of the Rings. It was on this day that Bilbo
gave his infamous birthday speech, saying “I don’t know half of you half
as well as I should like, and I like less than half of you half as well
as you deserve,” before disappearing from the Shire forever.
Also on this day, according to the Appendices of The Lord of the Rings,
99-year-old Samwise Gamgee rode out from Bag End for the final time. He
was last seen in Middle-Earth by his daughter Elanor, to whom he
presented the Red Book. According to tradition, he then went to the Grey
Havens and passed over the Sea, last of the Ringbearers.
And now, in honor of the Baggins Birthdays, the departure of Samwise, and
Hobbits in general, a quote about the Ring’s temptation of - and failure
with - one of J.R.R. Tolkien’s (and, for that matter, world
literature’s) greatest heroes, Samwise Gamgee:
“Wild fantasies arose in his mind; and he saw Samwise the Strong, Hero of the Age,
striding with a flaming sword across the darkened land, and armies
flocking to his call as he marched to the overthrow of Barad-dûr. And
then all the clouds rolled away, and the white sun shone, and at his
command the vale of Gorgoroth became a garden of flowers and trees and
brought forth fruit. He had only to put on the Ring and claim it for his
own, and all this could be. In that hour of trial it was the love of
his master that helped most to hold him firm; but also deep down in him
lived still unconquered his plain hobbit-sense: he knew in the core of
his heart that he was not large enough to bear such a burden, even if
such visions were not a mere cheat to betray him. The one small garden
of a free gardener was all his need and due, not a garden swollen to a
realm; his own hands to use, not the hands of others to command.”
- J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
I never had any direct contact with him, not even online. But something about him was special.
I am sorry for his family and friends. My heart aches especially for his little girl. But I am glad we will never again see his dark eyes full of pain and confusion.
Only that beautiful smile.
No more suffering for you, dear brother. I can't wait to meet you one day and tell you, "Thank you for staying faithful to Christ, even through the horror of this final year."
But more than that, I know it's from the heart. That's what touches me the most.
For our Lord God Almighty reigns
For our Load God Almighty reigns
Are You Lord God Almighty
Worthy is the Lamb
Worthy is the Lamb
You are Holy
Are You Lord God Almighty?
Worthy is the Lamb
Worthy is the Lamb
Re-reading Gone With the Wind has been so deeply meaningful to me this time around. I've gotten to the burning of Atlanta, and her return home afteward.
I feel her exhaustion, the weight of having to care for others, and the impotent rage that comes when you can do so little, while there's so much to be done. I feel the crushing weight of it all.
I love this movie so, so much!
My latest “Looking Back on Genre History” is up on StarShipSofa, and it’s an update on Native American Science Fiction/Indigenous Futurism. Listen for free here!
(The earlier segment I did introducing this topic in 2011 is here.)
Here are some of the links I mention in my new segment.
Apex Magazine’s “Celebration of Indigenous American Fantasists”
Strange Horizon’s Roundtable on Indigenous Futurism
Extrapolation’s Issue on Indigenous Futurism
This is the area of the family for whom I used to babysit. I miss the area and I miss that family so, so much. I went back a couple of years ago just to walk around and remember them. I saw their old apartment and the little playground across the street. We spent so much time there.
I admit, I cried.
I don't know how it looks these days, but when I was there, this was one of the most peaceful, beautiful residential areas I'd seen in the city. (The home of He Who Must Not Be Named was just down the street.)
But there was also an "artsy" vibe going on. The Lilltreet Art Center was on the way to their place.
The Ravenswood Art Walk
YouTube comments are usually a wasteland of idiocy. But I came upon this today and it was breathtaking. (Just like the video, which is beautiful and unexpectedly moving.)
I don't know if the comments originated with this person or whether they copied it from someone else. Whoever wrote it is an eloquent writer. This is gorgeous. (I broke it up into what I hope are appropriate paragraphs.)
Isn't this beautiful? The narration of the video was good. But I could imagine this one as being even better!
4 months ago
Feel for the scientists and the engineers who made this little probe. To them, it would be nothing short of their child, millions of kilometers away, unseen for twenty years, and taking hours to respond to the simplest of commands, yet it continues to make its parents proud, and delivering what is requested. The suspense and anxiety those mission controllers must have felt in the last twenty years have to result in some kind of emotion bond to that little computer.
Imagine sending your daughter out into the unknown, facing countless dangers and always playing the odds, running on processors two decades old yet still functioning and transmitting massive amounts of data home, never giving up. The little probe has made hundreds of maneuvers, each one painstakingly planned and executed, each one biting into her fuel reserves, each one bringing her closer to her end. Imagine the programmers who gave her the knowledge to keep herself safe, the engineers who designed her to be our eyes and ears, and the flight controllers who worked nonstop for twenty years to keep their child safe. To some it will be their entire career, others their magnum opus, but for all of us Cassini is our trailblazer, for in her footsteps we must follow.
We must continue to send our robotic creations into the abyss, so that someday we might go ourselves, wielding all the knowledge these brave children of ours have collected. Our descendants might never find Cassini after her cremation into Saturn, but they will go where Cassini has gone, see what Cassini has seen, and they will remember her and thank her for leading them there. Cassini might not be able to think as we humans do, or talk as we can, but she is more human than many of us will ever be, she embodies our spirit of courage, curiosity, fascination and exploration, embarking on a one way trip in the hopes that others will follow.
Don't be afraid to shed a tear for our little girl, be afraid that we might let her down, and to squander her efforts. Next time you see a bright star in the low summer sky, glistening over the horizon, just know that Cassini is there, beckoning you to come visit her.
More importantly, as it relates to Islam/jihad and the struggle for survival going on in the West, he has the moral clarity that is so desperately needed. We would do well to heed him.
The entire thing is worth watching - every last word.
HOW SEPTEMBER 11 CHANGED MY LIFE (VIDEO)
How desperately I long for my independence day from this nightmare, this hellish life I am living right now. I see their expressions, I see that finger in my face, I hear those words.
The key is that I cannot take it for myself. That's where the song goes wrong. God has to do this for me. Vengeance is not for me. I don't want vengeance.
I want justice. And I want mercy for them.
And only Jesus Christ can bring either one, and in perfect balance.
I only ask, Lord... when?
Just a quick bio skim from her official website says she's Japanese/Sicilian. Now there's a combination!
The ‘X-Files’ Dana Scully conquered GIFdom, one eye-roll at a time
Ah, a classic: The eyebrow and eyeroll (ETA: and tongue/lip thing!), uh, rolled into one!
Don't try this at home, kids. You might sprain your face.