“What does love look like? It has the hands to help others. It has the feet to hasten to the poor and needy. It has eyes to see misery and want. It has the ears to hear the sighs and sorrows of men. That is what love looks like.”—St Augustine (via itsquoted)
“Even if someone makes something terrible—like the music the Insane Clown Posse makes—at least they’re doing something that speaks to them. And they kept going even though people told them it was terrible. And they found their audience, and now they built a community around their work. Look, you couldn’t pay me to listen to their music, but I still feel like I have more in common with the Insane Clown Posse than I do with someone who just sits on the sidelines and shits on other people’s work and who never puts themselves on the line.”—Tom Scharpling in Mike Sacks’s Poking a Dead Frog (via lauraolin)
“It is foolish and childish, on the face of it, to affiliate ourselves with anything so insignificant and patently contrived and commercially exploitative as a professional sports team, and the amused superiority and icy scorn that the non-fan directs at the sports nut (I know this look — I know it by heart) is understandable and almost unanswerable. Almost. What is left out of this calculation, it seems to me, is the business of caring — caring deeply and passionately, really caring — which is a capacity or an emotion that has almost gone out of our lives. An so it seems possible that we have come to a time when it no longer matters so much what the caring is about, how frail or foolish is the object of that concern, as long as the feeling itself can be saved. Naivete — the infantile and ignoble joy that sends a grown man or woman to dancing and shouting with joy in the middle of the night over the haphazardous flight of a distant ball — seems a small price to pay for such a gift.”—
From “Agincourt and After” (1975) by Roger Angell.
He writes about baseball, specifically Carlton Fisk’s curving, twisting, home run in Game 6 of the World Series, but he could be speaking of all fans in every corner of fandom.
“When we contemplate the whole globe as one great dewdrop, striped and dotted with continents and islands, flying through space with other stars all singing and shining together as one, the whole universe appears as an infinite storm of beauty.”—John Muir (via thecalminside)
The district school board voted 6-1 Thursday night to remove the entire reading list
If you’ve been following the story of a Delaware school board’s decision to remove The Miseducation of Cameron Post from its high school summer reading list, apparently the final decision is in — the entire reading list has now been removed.
That means not only has Cameron Post been removed, other books including Gene Luen Yang’s Boxers, Rainbow Rowell’s Eleanor & Park, John Lewis’s March, and even John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars will no longer be recommended as summer reads for incoming freshman at Cape Henlopen High School. A sad end to a really wonderful and diverse reading list.
Hey there captain! I dunno if you already wrote your recap on PLL last night but I'm not sure if you'll be able to beat this one so thought I'd share :P hashtagpll./tumblr./com/post/92599158547/pll-5x07-episode-recap !
So, good. I guffawed so many guffaws. “DID YOU JUST CALL ME TRAVIS?” Clickity link.
One of the best things about Pretty Little Liars is how it has spawned the greatest online fandoms known to man. Here are some of the best recaps the internet has to offer. Feel free to pass along other recs. I’ll do another post in the next few weeks.
9. Spencer (last week: 11) Even I cannot be blinded by favoritism here: Spencer’s outfits are a joke. She swapped last week’s overall shorts for an overall dress. The overall dress is, beige, maybe? Some sort of sad, sandy-looking dirt-tan? Anyway, she continues to wear that dopey hat — hats like that are for hangovers; they don’t go with overall dresses in blah-beige because nothing goes with overall dresses in blah-beige — even when she is alone in her bedroom and obviously would have tossed it on the floor.
THIS WEEK’S LVP Alison, for not paying attention in Kung Fu Jake’s mailorder self-defense class. JK! Kung Fu Jake is recovering from the major foot injury A gave him for absolutely no reason, so obviously isn’t giving self-defense classes of any kind. Which Ali wouldn’t know, since, despite being on the run for her life for two years, before which time she got her pilot’s license in order to better evade A, she still apparently never once even RESEARCHED a self-defense class.
Alison snaps at Hanna about her stupid love triangle between Travis and Caleb, and Hanna goes all dark about the eyes the way she does when she’s about to shove a huge amount of money into a pasta box or bash someone over the head with a rowboat paddle. Hanna decides to help Alison get out of town and do it without any of the other girls finding out. She shoves her whole closet into Alison’s bag and grabs her emergency savings from a box of farfalle to hand over to Ali. You get the distinct impression she would strap Alison to her back and run her out of town if there were no other option.
Later on, when the troops are rounded up, bombs are dropped! Lucas and Melissa are in Mona’s army! Eddie left Bethany’s drawing because he wants the girls to know to look into stuff at Radley! A bullies Ali into staying in Rosewood! Hello, information overload!
Meanwhile, Aria is backsliding into her earliest stages of teen romance with her ex-boyfriend and English teacher Ezra Fitz, which is as understandable as it is understated this time around, and perseverating on the hilariously elaborate videotaped funeral (multiple angles!) of the girl she kind of killed. Only Mona, Ezra and the Liars know about Shana’s death, which admittedly connects Aria’s storyline to the overall plot more closely than ever: The Liars have to go along with Alison’s gonzo obfuscations, because Aria is now the one in danger of arrest. Still, between the hat and the strange hallucinations Aria continues to have, it’s all very Aria.
“Have you ever seen a pair of trees grow together? There are places where you can see that they are separate, distinct plants, but their trunks and branches wind around each other and their roots are so tangled up you can’t tell where one ends and the other begins. Neither started out needing the other; they were growing just fine on their own. But they’ve knit themselves together, and changed their shapes so that you can’t take one away without losing a piece of the other. Lena wants to cling to this baby, this tiny sapling she’s been growing for twenty weeks. But Stef, as much as she loves the promise of little Frankie, she can only see the ripping, the tearing, and the pain of losing the woman around whom she has grown her entire life.”—
The most beautiful description of Stef and Lena, and love in general, I’ve ever read. From Lucy Hallowell’s AfterEllen recap of 2x06 [Mother] (via lifesizehysteria)
Content warning: This post contains graphic language, slurs and triggering content
This article is heartbreaking. And true.
There is a reason I throttled back on doing a lot of creative gaming content a few years ago. And why I still avoid taking some jobs in the gaming world when they’re offered to me. And why, when we have a female host on any of our Geek and Sundry gaming shows, we have to monitor the comments on YouTube extra, to remove the many comments that are offensive and pollute our community’s spirit of equality. Because I hate that shit.
There is an endemic acceptance in the gamer world that “well, it comes with the territory” when a woman receives threats and harassment and the hateful anonymous internet dialogue is focused on her body and whether they would “do” her or not. I don’t know why this became okay. It’s a vocal minority that has been given way too much power over the industry dialogue, and I am so happy to see more and more articles like this shining the light on what reasonable gamer men and women have been conned into accepting as a given.
NOTHING is a given in this world. And frankly, it taints the art form we so love and keeps it back from becoming more respected and more diverse to not at least TRY to fight it. Gaming deserves more than complacency in this area.
Even posting this link will cause me to receive hateful Tumblr PMs. I can always tell when something I write gets linked on certain places on the internet (like 4 Chan or a few other forums of troll-hood), because I’ll immediately get dozens of hate mails along the veins of what is posted in this article.
Well, I’m a lucky one to be prominent enough to have 10 supporters for every hater. I mostly feel sorry for girls and women who aren’t in my position, who may just give up on gaming when they’re too beaten down to fight anymore.
We have to change that. For the good of what we love doing, gamers! Okay, back to work :)
Do you think other recappers of pll get as many people saying they should write exactly what ~they want to read and ~their specific interpretation of events/ships/etc -- or is that specific to you?
I think it’s specific to all writers who write for minority groups. Representation for LGBTQ peoples is better than ever, but it’s still sparse, so it matters a lot what sites like AfterEllen say. I don’t blame people for wanting to read what they want to read. Luckily I’ve been doing this long enough that people hollering at me about that doesn’t bother too much anymore. I work really hard to be an awesome ambassador for the lesbian/bi community — with my brainparts and my heatrparts and my soulparts — and I’m content in that knowledge. :)
Hi Heather. Just wanted to say I love your recaps, regardless of ships. Reading your PLL-recaps, and any other, is just great. I hope AfterEllen holds on to you for a looong time. Also, do you think there are any real chances Alison is honest (for once) about her feelings for Emily. My baby-dyke-heart almost wishes for it even though I'm a Paily-shipper at heart.
Thanks so much!
If Alison really is honest, it’ll be a love story for the ages. It’s almost like Paige healed herself and Emily is the only person who can heal Ali, right? At this point, that’s what I’m seeing, but only if Alison is for real. (And I have a hard time believing she is, just based on pretty much every flashback we have ever seen of her.)
I’m not writing off Emison. What I’m saying is: What I know right at this moment in time makes me not want them together right now at this moment in time. We’re in the middle of maybe the most bizarre (and bizarrely complicated!) story on earth. I will declare my endgame allegiance only after Tippi has sung her final funeral lament. :)
Which Hogwarts Houses would you sort the characters of Pretty Little Liars into? Personally I see the four main Liars as being Aria in Ravenclaw, Spencer in Slytherin, Hanna in Gryffindor, and Emily in Hufflepuff. Would you agree? And what about the other characters of Rosewood?
Yep, that’s how I see it too!
Mona, Jenna, and Melissa all seem Slytherin to me too, which makes me want to be evil a little bit, but I feel dirty just saying that, is how much of a Hufflepuff I am. And I think Paige is kind of a Slytherin too. It’s tricky. The line between Gryffindor and Slytherin is practically imperceptible if you even just squint.
Reading your amazing replies to the PLL fans just reminds me why you're my favorite recap journalist and Hufflepuff. I may not tweet you like I used whenever I read your recaps but I still love you and pretty much everything you say from a safe distance.... More precisely from the other side of the Atlantic ocean. Anyhow, please keep going because I'm loving to read the replies! (Also that Mona was is totally Hanna, like cannon of the cannon of the cannon)
I agree with the other anon. I adore your writing but the bias with Paige/Paily is so hard to stomach that I have to skip that part of the recaps b/c it feels like you are writing about fan fiction Paige and Paily, not canon Paige. I want interesting and engaging stories about queer girls and right now, Alison and Emily have angst and mystery. Ali may be a psychopath but it's interesting to watch. I'm willing to let the story play out before writing her off so quickly. lots more PLL to go.
Totally fair. But I mean, that’s the thing about recapping: You have to respond to what you just saw added to the things you’ve been watching for five seasons. What we’ve seen from Ali for five seasons plus what I see now makes me not trust her. If the story plays out differently, I’m not falling on some kind of Paige-shaped sword (wanky!). I’m reacting to what I see now. You can’t withhold judgment on a thing and write interesting recaps every week. It’s impossible.
Do you watch Rookie Blue? And if so, what's your opinion on Gail/Holly?
I do not, sadly. It’s on my list and if I had a Time-Turner I would absolutely be all over it. One day maybe! (Or maybe not! Maybe we’ve finally reached the age where no one person — except PunkyStarshine — can watch all the lesbian TV!)
Do you think it would make sense if it was revealed that Mona was/is in love (and/or just obsessed) with Alison? That is why she want her gone so much - because Alison bullied her so much while Mona was so in love with her? We've seen Mona wanting to be their friend (Byron cheating flashback); Mona kissing Ali's forehead and taking her advice on a makeover to heart; making Hanna into a "safe" version of Ali. She also had plastered the motel room with pics of Ali before Ali ran away.
I can’t decide if it’s really about Ali or really about Hanna, but I’m pretty sure it’s one of them (and I’m pretty sure it’s Hanna). #PoorMona. Loving straight girls will make you do the most adrenalized hyperreal things.
I am just gonna go ahead and bet the world that it was Em who sent Ali the text with the leave & die threat. (Not really.) # I actually think her attitude and behaviour last ep was kinda sane and appropriate regarding dealing with A - no dicking around. (though, all she thought about was finding a way to convince Ali to stay) # I don't think she stayed up all night to watch over Ali, as I've seen several think, but rather more like "no way my heart can deal with lying under the covers with Ali."
Every since Emily grabbed that steel rake and started STAB STAB STABBING at that hay at the hoedown trying to gouge out the guts of whichever red coat was in there, I have suspected she was showing signs of no-nonsense bloodlust. Maybe you’re right: Maybe her desire to protect Ali has finally helped her flip the switch to kung fu Nancy Drew.
I'm confused about something you said in your recap. How was the way Emily acted in this episode similar to what Paige did that made Emily break up with her?
I was interpreting it like: Emily broke up with Paige because Paige was trying to coerce her to make the decisions she thought were safest, taking away Emily’s autonomy and forcing her hand for selfish and unselfish reasons. And that’s what Emily seemed to be doing with Ali. Like, she thought leaving town was the safest thing and Emily was like, “ABSOLUTELY NOT AND FUCK YOU HANNA FOR HELPING.” Seeing Emily seethe at Hanna was more traumatizing to me than anything that has happened with Paige and Emily. It’s Hanna, man. HANNA.
I am a paily and emison shipper. Wish your recaps were less biased, and you could celebrate the emison moments with us while we've got them. This triangle seems to have divided the shippers pretty strongly. If they keep redeeming Ali, then I want Emison endgame. If she turns out to be A or same old Ali, then I want Paily endgame. Because even tho Em loved Ali first and more, it's obvious that Paige loves Em more than Ali does. If Ali's love doesn't continue to grow for Emily, then Paily it is!
I’m definitely excited to see where the show takes the story. I trust these writers implicitly, except about Ezra, which is a bummer for a million reasons, including but not limited to the fact that: Ian Harding is kind of a real life hero. They just miscalculated enormously on that front, I’m afraid.
If Ali’s feelings for Emily are strong and true, I am excited to see that white-hot love story play out. If Ali’s feelings for Emily are muddled and deeply complicated, I am excited to see that play out too. If Ali is just grasping for power, god help her because Emily and Emison fandom are gonna throttle that girl like Noel Kahn’s robot house! And if Paige and Emily end up together, I’m very happy to see that, obviously, because I adore Paige McCullers and what she represents is more precious than a basement full of lasagna dollars.
The key, for me, to interpreting to stories is reacting to what I’m seeing on my screen in the moment. Not what I hope for or what the actors have said or what the writers say or what Ao3 says. And, for me, what I’m seeing right now is Ali’s same old shenanigans plus a healthy dose of understanding about what drives her.
I do confess, however, that I’m not reacting to this story like an 18-year-old who has grown up in a world making pro-LGBT rights strides unlike anything in history. I am reacting to the story like a 35-year-old who grew up in the deep deep south in a hyper conservative Christian family, disowned by who knows how many friends when I came out, and also as someone who has been studying and writing about lesbian/bi representation in media for 7 years.
I have three lifetimes worth of experience and book learning, but also some TV-induced baggage. It’s not enough to sway me to root for Ali and Emily because they’re two sexy ladies who smooched sexily.
I was talking to some buddies today about how meta it is that Alison taking on a corporeal form again has divided fandom as much as it has divided the Liars. Maybe we’re all just living inside the matrix of Spencer’s mind.
Anyhoodle, that’s me. I think it’s rad as hell that this show is stirring up such interesting conversations in the gay lady community. It’s too much to wish everyone could be cool about it, but I’m a Hufflepuff. And I’m stoked to see what’s in store.
Heather you're awesome. Do you think Emily is a bad person for loving Alison right now or just blinded? What do you think is going on in the mind of Emily? I also don't ship Emison.
No, I think Emily is the best person. I think she loves Ali in a true, deep way that is complicated beyond anything we can imagine. Emily loved her. She was murdered. And so Emily had to deal with that loss without ever having any closure about whether or not Ali actually had feelings for her, and then Ali wasn’t really dead at all, so all of those questions about whether Ali was for real mixed with all those emotions about her really being alive mixed with the sheer terror Emily must feel anytime anyone she loves leaves the house because they all get smacked in the face with a rock and buried in Spencer’s backyard in the end. It makes TOTAL sense to me how Emily is acting. It just gives me the heebies because I don’t trust Ali farther than Aria could throw a Godzilla.
I do think the way Emily has treated Paige has been pretty shitty, though. Well. Super shitty really. I can’t decide if she even deserves Paige anymore.
Kristana: Who is more capable, Stahma or HG? Please give supporting examples.
Well, this is a very tricky question, because: capable of what? I’ll assume you are asking me to grade them in their Ordinary Wizarding Levels.
Charms HG: O (Favorite charm - Accio, as in ”Myka, don’t make me magic you back into bed!”) Stahma: E (Favorite charm - Sectumsempra, as in “Lay your hands on me again and I will rip open your chest with a flick of my wand.”)
Transfiguration HG: O (Practical exam - Transfigures a formerly straight/straight-and-narrow Secret Service agent into a rule-breaking lezzbian.) Stahma: E (Practical exam - Transfigures her kingpin husband into a pitiable thug.)
Herbology HG: O (Favorite magical plant - Dirigible Plum.) Stahma: O (Favorite magical plant - Devil’s Snare.)
Defense Against the Dark Arts HG: A (Patronus - Direwolf) Stahma: A (Patronus - Hellbug)
Potions HG: O (Favorite household potion - Sleekeazy’s Hair Potion.) Stahma: O (Favorite household potion - Moonbeam bubble bath.)
Care of Magical Creatures HG: E (Magical pet - Hebridean Black Dragon.) Stahma: O (Magical Pet - Kneazle.)