The reason I overslept for work this morning was that I dreamed I’d gone grocery shopping with Clint Barton. When I’d finished, I waited for him by the door but he didn’t show up for a long time. Others did, wondering where Clint was—including Natasha, who decided to go look for Clint with me. When we went to his apartment, we discovered a mysterious figure in the midst of putting Barney in a car that would send him over the edge of a cliff.
We began to chase the figure. Natasha fell out of the chase after a little while, and it was left up to me to catch him. I finally caught up and the figure’s identity was revealed to me: Matt Fraction himself. I demanded to know what he’d done with Clint, and at that point was woken up by my alarm (once again—I’d hit snooze) playing the Avengers theme.
Moral of the story: this is what you get if you read Hawkeye right before bed. Also, you might be late for work.
Well, I’m out of Beyond Belief now. I cannot believe how charming and entertaining thirty-four half-hour to an hour episodes about two people whose sole conflicts are “please leave our apartment,” “please let go of our bottle,” and “no YOU’RE the most wonderful, darling” can be. But the answer is overpoweringly.
Hi, Noelle! Was wondering, do you think that men's portrayal in comics should be changed as well? Oftentimes, I feel that I cannot relate to the male characters, because few of them have weak sides. There aren't many moments where a guy freezes up in a fight, or gets truly scared.
this is, I think, a multi-faceted answer, so I’ll attempt to answer it in facets. I’m also putting it under a cut, because long.
I am a nurse. For 30 years of my career, I was a labor and delivery nurse. I took care of women through all stages of labor and through their delivery. Due to the many times that I have worked 16 hour shifts, I bonded with many women and helped them through long hours. Finally, through much work on the mom’s part with my guidance, she would be ready to deliver. In would sail the doctor, spend five minutes catching the baby, and then pose for all the pictures. I would hear from the families how wonderful he/she was.
Then why is my back killing me because I stood for two to three hours with a woman in a variety of positions including resting her foot on my shoulder while she pushed? Oh, and did I mention that she is also paralyzed from the waist down from the epidural, so I was also helping to hold her up while she squatted to push?
Why have I had to change my scrub clothes twice in a shift because someone either puked on me or amniotic fluid soaked everything?
Who is it that actually got that IV started while reassuring the poor mom?
Who is it that took the camera out of the daddy’s trembling hand and started taking family pictures because she knew that otherwise there would be no proof that he had even been in the room? And capturing the look of wonder on both parent’s faces at the same time.
Who is it that cleaned up every body fluid that can spew from a human, with a smile on her face and encouraging words for the mortified patient who has never been sick in front of a stranger in her life?
Who is it that tracked down the anesthesia people, chased them out of the lounge, and threatened them with their lives if they didn’t take care of her patient, NOW?
And when things didn’t go well, who was it that took that poor baby that didn’t make it, cleaned it up, dressed it, wrapped it in a soft blanket, and brought it to the broken-hearted parents to hold for the first and last time?
I personally freehand the majority of my patterns, or I’ll grab a garment with a similar shape/style from my closet and use that to trace out a pattern. However, for more fitted clothing like the bunny suit I’m working on, creating a duct tape mould can provide a more accurate pattern that will require less modification down the road.
When it comes down to it, a pattern is basically a puzzle that you’re putting together to make a garment. Once you start understanding how clothing is assembled, patterns make a lot more sense! Take some time going through your closet and examining the seams, panels, etc. on your favorite outfits. Think about how that jacket or that skirt would look if it was laid out flat on a table - that’s essentially what a pattern is! It might be worth visiting a thrift store and buying a few cheap garments that you can cut apart and examine (and even practice sewing them back together).
My biggest piece of advice, though, is to always make a mock-up when you’re working with a new pattern! Using muslin, cheap cotton, an old bed sheet, or whatever you have at your disposal, make a test version of your garment so that you understand how the pattern works. You can also use the mock-up to make any adjustments to the pattern so that it will fit you correctly. It’s much better to mess up on muslin as opposed to $22/yd brocade! (Been there. Done that. It was awful. 0/10 would not recommend.)
Please tell the story about Alice and the machetes.
Alice—my large female Maine Coon—is big enough that she can basically lift up to ten pounds, and drag anything that she has lifted around the house. I have a few machetes in the front hall closet (mostly used to menace my sister while she showers). Alice sees me fetch them out often.
About a year ago, she wanted a treat, and I was ignoring her to keep making word count. So she went to the machete closet, opened it, grabbed one of the machetes in her teeth…
…and dragged it down the hall to my room, where she presented it to me and sang the song of her people.
Old English (Anglo-Saxon):Eft he axode, hu ðære ðeode nama wære þe hi of comon. Him wæs geandwyrd, þæt hi Angle genemnode wæron. Þa cwæð he, "Rihtlice hi sind Angle gehatene, for ðan ðe hi engla wlite habbað, and swilcum gedafenað þæt hi on heofonum engla geferan beon."
Middle English:In þat lond ben trees þat beren wolle, as þogh it were of scheep; whereof men maken clothes, and all þing þat may ben made of wolle. In þat contree ben many ipotaynes, þat dwellen som tyme in the water, and somtyme on the lond: and þei ben half man and half hors, as I haue seyd before; and þei eten men, whan þei may take hem.
Early Modern English:But, soft! what light through yonder window breaks? It is the east, and Juliet is the sun. Arise, fair sun, and kill the envious moon, Who is already sick and pale with grief, That thou her maid art far more fair than she Be not her maid, since she is envious; Her vestal livery is but sick and green And none but fools do wear it; cast it off. It is my lady, O, it is my love!
Modern English:Moving forward using all my breath. Making love to you was never second best. I saw the world crashing all around your face, never really knowing it was always mesh and lace. I'll stop the world and melt with you. You've seen the difference and it's getting better all the time. There's nothing you and I won't do. I'll stop the world and melt with you.
The silly rhyme above - which I dashed off in under five minutes - advances an argument about which I feel strongly.
I refer not to the disgraceful way in which FOX News plays to bigots. That ground has already been adequately covered by others. No, my concern is not dog-whistle politics but doggerel verse.
The other night I was running my mouth on Twitter - as you do - and said:
This was taken as a judgment on the artistic merits of modern verse. In fact, I meant exactly what I said. No aesthetic judgments were implied at all. My opinion is not founded on any notions of literary merit, but is based purely on my sense of the current thinking in cognitive science.
While poetry has always been an art, it was also, in its earliest days, a mnemonic trick. The human memory is a vine: it thrives when it has a structure to climb, something with plenty of places for the plant to attach itself to. And a rhyme is just the thing.
Nursery rhymes may be no great stuff as art goes… but they are easy to remember. Doggerel is, in a sense, the first sticky content. ”Row, Row, Row Your Boat” isn’t exactly Ezra Pound, but no child ever forgets that life is but a dream. I delight in the verse of Jack Gilbert and return to it often. But it would require plenty of repetition and will to memorize one of his better poems, while nursery rhymes operate like earwurms. You won’t find any graduate writing courses in doggerel, but the folks who write jingles will never doubt the insidious power of a glib rhyme (better call Saul!).
The sticky nature of the simplest verse makes it an ideal way to pass along the most important information… such as the alphabet, or the notion that if you fall off a high perch, all the king’s horses and all the king’s men may not be able to reassemble the bits.
When, after World War I, poetry turned away from the sugar coating of rhyme and the adhesive aspects of form, the art truly became unmemorable in the purest sense of the word. This seems to me hardly an argument at all, but a simple statement of fact.
Perhaps it is a healthy evolution, although the species does not seem to be thriving these days, having rejected the very advantages that made it so adaptable to the changing demands of history. It is, in that sense, rather like a bird that has forgotten how to fly.
A friend argued that the time when poetry needed to serve a mnemonic purpose passed long ago, as soon as we learned to write things down. With that in mind, he seemed to suggest, simple rhyme becomes more irrelevant each day, as our machines can increasingly remember things for us.
I respectfully disagree. You are not your devices. Your memory wants to be worked. It wants to be used and the effort of applying it is as much a pleasure as free-climbing a tricky rock. You are a human being, not a human being + electronics. Relying on your apps to remember things for you is, at bottom, as regrettable as wishing you had some machines to have sex for you.
A barnacle is not the boat.
Rhyme with me and stay afloat.
Do it now before your memory is shot,
Learn some verse and forget-me-not.
(I should add that a lot of my thinking here was informed by Joshua Foer’s delightful Moonwalking with Einstein: The Art and Science of Remembering Everything. David Orr’s Beautiful & Pointless: A Guide to Modern Poetry undoubtedly also shaped my reasoning. I highly recommend both books to anyone who might have an interest in the subject.)