The Talented Mrs. Jennicorn

I had an important delivery to make but the door was closed. An unusual sign from my extroverted colleague. I cautiously placed my ear against the door, searching for signs of life. Oddly, no sounds emerged, so I leaned in. Not realizing that his door does not function properly, I fell into his office for all 15+ conference attendees to see.

Is it time to go home yet?

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Anti-Trans Tweets

Well, hello.

It’s summer, the sun is shining, the birds are singing, and JESUS, KAREN Rowling has – bizarrely – gone on an anti-trans Twitter spree. This seems like an odd time to start trying to stamp out trans people, given that Black people are being actively murdered for reasons that would not stand up in a fair court of law, but whatever floats your boat, Karen. We don’t usually post as a group, but, as three Potterheads who are still waiting for their Hogwarts letters, we want to make this inescapably clear: We do not support this.

For anyone who’s not really following right now, J.K. Rowling, who already has a history of opposing basic rights for transgender people, was recently offended by an article that referred to “people who menstruate.” She then went on to offend other people with a handful of inane tweets that contained such gems as “Erasing the concept of sex removes the ability of many to meaningfully discuss their lives.” In other words, it’s all about her. In the middle of an extraordinarily difficult year that has already brought us a global pandemic, social upheaval, and murder hornets, she has decided that legally acknowledging transgender people by their chosen identities will somehow erase her own womanhood. She also tried to tell LGB people they were being erased along with her (“If sex isn’t real, there’s no same-sex attraction”) and then threw in the “Some of my best friends are [XYZ]” argument (“I know and love trans people”). You cannot claim to love trans people while in the same breath refusing to acknowledge their right to choose their own identities. Whether taken by themselves or set against the general backdrop of 2020, her tweets are ridiculous, egotistical, and self-indulgent.

Besides the obvious fact that her logic is completely bananas, her transphobia is particularly bewildering when viewed against the broader context of the Harry Potter series, which is built around the themes of love, acceptance, and overcoming misconceptions. I honestly don’t know which is more ironic, the fact that all of her hero characters would be horrified by her attitude or the fact that several actors from the Harry Potter films have openly disagreed with her, or the fact that Voldemort and Grindelwald would happily have adopted her rhetoric to justify their Muggle-born exterminations.

Can you imagine?


Resources

If you have the means, please consider donating to The Trevor Project. They are a national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to LGBTQ people younger than 25. If you’re sick of Rowling’s bullshit, Daniel Radcliffe published a very thoughtful, loving statement on their website. If you feel like you can’t look at the Harry Potter books the same way anymore, he has some thoughts on that too.

“To all the people who now feel that their experience of the books has been tarnished or diminished, I am deeply sorry for the pain these comments have caused you. I really hope that you don’t entirely lose what was valuable in these stories to you. If these books taught you that love is the strongest force in the universe, capable of overcoming anything; if they taught you that strength is found in diversity, and that dogmatic ideas of pureness lead to the oppression of vulnerable groups; if you believe that a particular character is trans, nonbinary, or gender fluid, or that they are gay or bisexual; if you found anything in these stories that resonated with you and helped you at any time in your life – then that is between you and the book that you read, and it is sacred. And in my opinion nobody can touch that. It means to you what it means to you and I hope that these comments will not taint that too much.”

If you’re looking to support Black trans people, please see this #BlackTransLivesMatter resource list. Besides providing a list of organizations to support, the creators of the document have included lists of books and articles to read, videos to watch, and podcasts to listen to.

As a final note, we would like to remind you all that the TERF community’s gift for spreading discord and enmity is very great. We can fight it only by showing an equally strong bond of friendship and trust. Differences of habit and language are nothing at all if our aims are identical and our hearts are open.

If only Rowling had listened to her own wisdom.

Anatomy of a Food Blog

I am a food blog junkie. I surf food blogs during my lunch break and have a whole board dedicated to recipes I’ll probably never try. If there were a Food Blog Lurkers Anonymous, I would join it.

Me: Mew.*

Group Leader: Did you just fucking mew?

Me: Mew.**

* Hello, my name is Karo. I’ve been addicted to food blogs since 2014.
** Yes.

Yeah, that would go really well.

Anyway. I love food blogs but there are days when I find them le rage-inducing, and this was one of those days. I have a very long list of Things That Do Not Amuse Me, but one of the top ones is cooking blogs that are so bogged down with ads and fucking autoplay videos that they literally SHUT DOWN MY COMPUTER.

For those who suffer rage blackouts before the scroll, here’s a more accurate screen view:

I’m not even joking. I went to grab a recipe from one of my favorite blogs today and waited five minutes for the page to load, at which point my laptop told me I had run out of “application memory.” After another five to ten minutes of spinning wheels of doom the screen went black and I had to force-restart the computer what the actual fuck I just want recipes and I don’t have money for a machine that can keep up with this shit (ノಠ益ಠ)ノ彡┻━┻

PSA: IF YOUR WEBSITE IS LOADED DOWN WITH ADS AND UNNECESSARY VIDEOS TO THE POINT THAT IT’S NO LONGER USABLE, WE HAVE A PROBLEM.

Don’t get me wrong: I love instructional videos and accept that ads are a necessary evil, but I want to flip a table every time a food blogger thinks they need to have a gratuitous autoplay video follow you all over the screen. I visit the recipe page and there’s the autoplay video mucking up my page load and giving me rainbow death wheels. I scroll down and IT FUCKING FOLLOWS ME because Jane Blogger is just so confident that this video is exactly what I need even though it has nothing to do with the recipe it’s preventing me from reading. I love this blog but I don’t like visiting it, which seems somewhat counterintuitive. /rant

On a happier note, I finally got my Try Guys book!!!

I am a hardcore Tryceratops and go out of my way for everything and anything relating to the Try Guys, up to and including watching all their videos, supporting them on Patreon, donating to things that they care about (but only if I care about them too, I’m not a complete sucker), listening to their podcast even though I never listen to anybody else’s podcasts, and going to their show even though it’s on a weekday and I almost never go out on weekdays, all of which means that I also had to preorder their book, both hardcopy and audio. (Yes, you, judging me. I don’t care.) I never thought I could love four strange men so much, but that was before I saw them doing ballet and asking little girls for fashion advice. ❤️

I’m on page 39. STAY TUNED FOR THE NEXT THRILLING INSTALLMENT

Awesome Con 2019

Don’t talk to me about season 8 also LITERALLY NOBODY BETTER COME FOR MY SWEET BABY I WILL MURDER THE FIRST PERSON WHO TRIES TO SPEAR HIM (ノಠ益ಠ)ノ彡┻━┻

In other news, I went to Awesome Con! I wasn’t planning to, but my friend Heather was curious and neither of us had ever been to a con, so we went together.

I’m glad we went but holy shit there was so much stuff x___x The pic only shows like 1/4 of it at most. It was definitely way bigger than either of us thought it would be and tbh I’d heard that it wasn’t that great so I wasn’t expecting much lawlllllz but then we walked into about a gajillion booths and almost didn’t make it back out. Maybe it would’ve been different if we’d gone to any of the panels, but we were mainly there for the shopping to see the artists and geekery. There was definitely a lot of lovely geeky stuff:

We also stumbled across this completely random little triceratops:

He turned out to be a candy bucket!

And lunch, which we got from one of the built-in Food Stalls:

Heather was hungry so we ended up agreeing to a quick lunch at Food Stall since that seemed to be the only thing around, but of course after lunch we found a whole line of food trucks on the other end of the hall and realized exactly how hard we’d settled #tableflip (I guess the tater tots were okay………..who doesn’t love $12 tots?)

AND NOW FOR A COMPLETELY RANDOM PHOTO GALLERY CUS THIS IS GETTING LONG AF AND I ONLY MANAGED TO CUT MYSELF DOWN TO 40SOMETHING PHOTOS OF THE 108 I ORIGINALLY TOOK:

And my loot, because you can’t go to a con and not bring back lots of loot:

We saw everyone and their mom carrying this damn backpack tote around and I kinda have a raging obsession thing for bags so I ended up buying one but it was expensive af but one of the other con-goers told me he was handed one at check-in…??? Did we not get there early enough or something?

The pet dragon doesn’t like to stay on my arm but the artist said he could be wound around a lamp so I might stick him on my desk light. Not sure what I’ll call him yet, I feel like I had a name for him at one point but I completely forgot it so it must not have been that great lawlllllll

The only kinda weird point was when I was thinking about buying this necklace, because the guy who was selling it claimed it was an Indian good luck token. I asked him if he meant Native Americans, thinking it was an Eskimo charm, but he said he meant actual southeast Asian Indians which is odd as the charm is clearly a polar bear………? I mean obviously I bought it anyway so I guess it doesn’t really matter but please do let me know if you’ve heard of any polar bear sightings in India cus this is very slightly bothering me (or, better yet, tell me how I can stop caring about it #OCDfordays)

I thought I was going to be more organized about this but LOOKS LIKE I WAS WRONG HAHAHAHAHAHA my life is garbage 😀 Rounding out this shitstorm with more food pics because that’s literally who I am as a person:

NO MORE GALLERIES FOR THIS POST CUS FOOD PICS GET THEIR OWN SPACE OKAY. We made up for the not-really-worth-it tater tots with a lot of excellent Japanese food, including the katsukarē don above :3 I slept over at Heather’s the night before the con, so we went to a donburi place near her apt and it was amazingggggg. Then after the con we hoofed it to another Japanese place (also near her apt) and had even more good food!

Everything at Toryumon was awesome, but the highlight was the chocolate chip ice cream mochis:

So good.

Bonus pic: We found the world’s biggest crayons.

That’s it from me. x____x Looking back, I’m not entirely sure why I had to finish this tonight.

So Over April

Spring has come to Maryland and apparently this is a good thing? I can’t speak for everybody else, but tbh I’m pretty over it because we’re right smack in the middle of The Pollening and everyone’s been sneezing their brains out. The good news is that cute Easter rings arrived in the bakery at work:

My mom said the bunny looks like an egg and dude she’s not wrong 😂😂😂 I’m not sure what I’m going to do with Mr. Bunny, but right now he’s down in the kitchen keeping the owl salt and pepper shakers company. In the meantime here’s more food pics, because apparently this is a food blog now #IAcceptFullResponsibility

Yesterday one of the senior designers wanted tacos for lunch, so she mobilized the rest of us and we dropped all our projects and piled into two cars and ran off to the nearest taco bar. I’d never been to this place, but I see it all the time because it’s fused to the convenience store attached to the gas station down the street from the office. I’m not really sure if it’s actually part of the gas station or not, but either way it’s apparently so popular that by the time we got there there were about a billion people milling around trying to buy tacos. Luckily we weren’t planning on staying anyway, so we got our food and scooted back to work before anyone noticed the entire design department was missing. And after the tacos there was cake, because it was somebody’s birthday and the universe is clearly trying to kill me.

I. REGRET. NOTHINNNNNNG.

In other news I was going to talk a little bit about my progress on The Count of Monte Cristo but it quickly spiraled out of control and ballooned into a huge long rant and I couldn’t figure out how to finish it and I am le tired so that will have to wait for another post x_____x (but seriously I have to finish Monte Cristo because I finally got my hands on The Ghost Bride and it’s by a new  author named Yangsze Choo who sounds literally like my twin and it looks divine and I want to read it nowwwwwww gaaaAAAHHH #bookwormproblems)

This is how fucking inconveniently OCD I am: I bought Choo’s second book before I bought Ghost Bride (meant to buy them both at once but it wasn’t meant to be), but I made the mistake of peeking into The Night Tiger a little bit farther than I should have and I saw a line that looked like a reference to Ghost Bride and now I have to read Ghost Bride before I read Night Tiger because SPOILERS.

And now it’s way later than I planned and I am still le tired, and it’s time for kitty-dragons to go to bed. Good night, world. We’ll rant together tomorrow.

P.S. I JUST THIS MOMENT SAW A GOODREADS REVIEW THAT SAYS GHOST BRIDE IS SPIRITED AWAY FOR ADULTS AND IF THAT’S TRUE I’M GOING TO CRY HUGE TEARS OF HAPPINESS NNNNNRRRRRRRGHHHHHHHH MUST FINISH MONTE CRISTO T_____T

Kitty Paws

After five(ish) years with a 5S, I finally upgraded my phone!

Okay so technically that’s not accurate: I did upgrade somewhere around 2016, but literally only to swap my 16GB 5S for a 32GB 5S. (Seriously, that was the reason.) There’s a number of reasons I’ve been resisting everything past the fifth-gen iPhones, including (1) the missing headphone jack, (2) the missing home button, and (3) the sheer fucking size of every phone that wasn’t my dainty little 5S. Unfortunately that same little 5S decided to stab me in the back by killing its own battery (look, I said I was sorry about all the times I threw it), so I finally got fed up enough to trade it in.

The main problem that I didn’t really anticipate was that I have teeny-tiny kitty paws and this thing is the size of Jupiter wtf

SERIOUSLY I COULD BLUDGEON SOMEBODY WITH THIS GORRAM PHONE WHY ARE PHONES SO BIG NOW THEY’RE LITERALLY MINI TABLETS AND MY HANDS ARE NOT BIG ENOUGH TO DEAL WITH THIS SHIT. The other problem was that I put off upgrading for so long that Apple wasn’t actively looking for my phone model so I only got like $28 for it ;____; I mean that’s better than nothing but considering I got my last two phones pretty much for free it was a bit of a blow. Next time I’ll know better!

Rocky start aside, I love this phone. I didn’t think I’d ever get used to the missing headphone jack and home button but I’ve caught myself trying to use XR-specific gestures on my iPad so apparently I’ve acclimated and I also finally get to use the Totoro PopSocket my friends gave me, which is now one of my favorite things ever ❤️ also I now have a phone that doesn’t scream and kill itself every time it gets down to 31% battery THIS IS SO NICE EVEN IF I DO HAVE TO PLAY TWO-HANDED TEMPLE RUN and of course the first thing I did with the shiny new camera was start photographing my food because #priorities 😀 😀 😀

Last Sunday my parents and I went to a new Thai restaurant for dinner, and it was fucking amazing. We had the curry puffs, wok-charred rice noodles with chicken, squid, and Chinese salted cabbage, spicy fried catfish with Thai eggplant, curry soup noodles with chicken drumsticks (like, literally chicken drumsticks in a big bowl with the soup poured over them), and Thai tea croissant pudding. The pudding was a little too soft for my taste, but everything else was pretty much perfect and I’m currently trying to figure out how I can kidnap all my friends introduce all my friends to this restaurant. If  this keeps up I’m going to be a roly-poly dragon but I don’t even care right now because NOODLESSSSSSSS ❤️❤️❤️

We Interrupt This Program

Things I was supposed to do this week:
  1. Ship two projects.
  2. Buy a baby shower gift.
  3. Try to get my ass up to Boston. (Don’t ask if I’ve started applying to the 50 bazillion jobs I bookmarked on Monday, cus I’ll never tell.)
  4. Draw two of the journal comics I promised when we first launched this site.
  5. Get started on a couple of freelance projects.
  6. Generally keep my shit together.
Things I wasn’t supposed to do but still did anyway:
  1. Get into a fist fight with InDesign.
  2. Lose my shit, rage across the Pacific, and rampage through Tokyo.
  3. Leave my music folder at school.

I usually have my violin lesson on Saturdays, but I’ll be at a baby shower this Saturday so my teacher let me come in on Wednesday. We had a good time and made fine progress reteaching me the Schindler’s List parts I learned a couple weeks ago which I 100% have practiced I swear and then when it was time to go I remembered to zip up my violin case properly but somehow managed to leave this smug little shit on the music stand AND IT IS LAUGHING AT ME
(ノಠ益ಠ)ノ彡┻━┻ (non v.g.)

I wasn’t planning on raging across the Pacific, but just as I was congratulating myself on leaving work 30 minutes early I remembered I needed to go pick up my folder. Which is not in itself a tragedy, but I’ve been feeling weird today because, I don’t know, it’s a Thursday? (Yeah, that doesn’t make sense to me either.) Whatever the reason, I spiraled hard during the drive and was on track to devolve into full-blown Order of the Phoenix Harry when I arrived at the school and got blasted with a huge dose of nature’s answer to mental health problems:

 

ASD;JKFGHKLVHHHHHH WHAT MENTAL HEALTH PROBLEMS I DON’T HAVE ANY MENTAL HEALTH PROBLEMS I MEAN LOOK AT THAT SWEET LITTLE FAAAAAAAAACE /dead

Then since I happened to be by a bakery (total coincidence), I bought three cookies, ate one in the car, and wondered vaguely why all my problems can’t solve themselves so politely.

At least tomorrow’s Friday?

I quit.

By close of business of 3/28/19, I will be unemployed without any job offers. I do, however, have a million and one ideas, 13% of a plan, a strong and loving support group, and a sprinkle of motivation.  Do I feel free? Absolutely. Am I scared? Yes. Was this reckless? Perhaps.

I loved the job and have grown friendships with many of my colleagues; I was also doing more than stellar work according to my performance review, and the pay and benefits weren’t so bad. Then why, one might ask, would I sacrifice the comforts of steady pay and benefits?

Because I sacrificed sleep, time with my loved ones, my mental health, and even food; I literally starved myself. Months of sudden sickness that came and went, then a whole month of constant nausea and random vomiting, sometimes at 2 o’clock in the morning, along with numerous doctor visits, pregnancy tests and blood work that all came back negative or inconclusive, poking and prodding, weighing and analyzing – I was at the brink of insanity. Finally, my general physician and I combed through the last seven months of my life:

50- to 60-hours or more work weeks, often working through nights and weekends. Eating one meal or snack per day, only drinking coffee. Barely sleeping, if at all. Constant exhaustion.

After a long conversation with my GP, during which she pointed out that I had lost 20 lbs since August, it was clear I had unintentionally shrunk my stomach so that anything more than what I was used to, which was only an XL hot coffee, my body was rejecting.

The realization of what I had done to myself hit me pretty damn hard – I became a corporate potato, sacrificing so much of myself, only to ensure the wealth of a corporation. So, I had to make a choice, and I chose me with my one million and one ideas, my 13% of a plan, my amazing loved ones, and the little bit of motivation. I will conquer whatever it is I am meant to conquer. Perhaps I’ll start with everything I have left unfinished.

It’s Raining Women

HAPPY INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY!

wyrdgURLs has officially been live for a week! On this historic occasion, we wanted to thank all the wonderful friends who’ve agreed to follow us even though all we post is memes. We love each and every one of you.

Send in the Clowns

A writer, a project manager, and a graphic designer walked into a blog. And there was much rejoicing.


Jennicorn

A partially painted canvas sits in the corner of a room next to unused camera lighting. There’s a plastic container filled with paints, glitter, various accessories, and colorful paper, barely touched, as a stack of empty frames and sketchbooks sit undisturbed. Larger frames waiting to be taken apart and refinished also lean against a stack of books that need to be read. Printed “how to” guides on creating a small business and other educational material lie in a pile next to a professional camera with loads of photos to be uploaded and edited. A brand new laptop with ideas written out lies patiently waiting in an unfinished room, owned by an unfinished woman who is an unfinished project herself.


Karo

Basically a cat.


Rusalka

Rusalka will introduce herself in your nightmares.