daemonluna: default icon, me with totoros (Default)
In the past twenty-four hours, we have:
  • canned the sour pickles (nine jars, with three jars left in the fridge to eat in the immediate sense)
  • pitted and destemmed a flat of cherries (about fourteen pounds post-pitting) and are brining them to be canned or turned into maraschino cherries
  • made roasted green grapes for freezing in small freezer jam type quantities
  • made a batch of granola for the week (why had I forgotten how easy it is to make granola?)
  • took the post-pitting cherry pits and juice and made cherry syrup
  • started a batch of cucumber and carrot kimchi in the pickle crock with the last bit of picking cucumbers
  • processed and frozen the peaches and plums kicking around in the bottom of the crisper drawer (hello, peach-and-plum kuchen at a later date)
  • and made roasted green beans and zucchini to have with rice and dumplings for supper
... and I still need to toss in a load of laundry.

Perhaps I have been possessed by the ghosts of my German-Canadian farm wife ancestors?

In other news, I was poking around on my hard drive, and found a folder of old LJ icons. There are a whole series captioned "fandom orphan," and I'm sure it was a thing, since I made them, but I cannot remember the specific context. I remember exactly where the shed freak icons came from, though! So I posted them on Tumblr, because why not. Stupid in-jokes FTW.

daemonluna: default icon, me with totoros (Default)
 Yeahhhh. I did a thing. 

Love Alters Not
"Mary and Joseph have four children under the age of ten, the accumulated grief and misunderstandings of twelve years of marriage, and a basic inability to communicate. In which Youtube, apology cookies, and the capybara incident add up to salvation."
daemonluna: default icon, me with totoros (Default)

Here is a thing I posted on Tumblr about celebrating Pride (which is why I am non-specific about what city I'm in, etc):

The summer I first came out, my girlfriend was travelling, and I was in a new city for grad school where I didn’t really have any close friends. I celebrated Pride by painting my toenails rainbow striped, and renting half a dozen LGBTQ movies from the local video store. Over the next few years, we did go to Pride, but that mostly involved standing and watching the Pride parade, and feeling an odd mix of included, and lost in the crowd. I wasn’t involved in any local queer communities--most of the other LGBTQ people I knew were through online fanfic communities.  (Edited just for LJ/DW to add: But not all. We often did the parade watching in the rain, specifically, with [personal profile] zulu)
When we moved to a smaller city, there wasn’t a parade, but there was a BBQ in the park. We never went. We didn’t know anyone, and even though it was open to everybody, it still felt to me like it would be crashing a family party. 
Now, I’m on the organizing committee for Pride in my midsized Canadian prairie city. In the recent past, most of the activities have all been aimed at young, able-bodied, presumably white gay guys. That’s been changing dramatically over the last few years. We’ve got some pretty typical big stuff--a flag raising, an awards gala, a parade and fair in the park, and a dance. But the current approach is, if you have a queer event open to the public in June, we will put it in the calendar and event guide.
This year, that included things that happen year-round like local LGBTQ support group meetings and community QSA meetings and performances in a local queer theatre space, explicitly queer-themed versions of other year-round events (LGBTQ movies at the library, non-gendered swing dancing, Pride editions of board gaming and artist meet-ups to take a stance on creating LGBTQ-inclusive spaces). It included events set up by other partner groups, like the screening of a documentary criticizing the commercialization of Pride events, and a curated exhibit opening at the local art gallery, or run by board members like a LGBTQ history walking tour, a panel discussion on the intersectionality of indigenous and queer identity, and a drag queen clothing swap. 
There were more than fifty events on the calendar. Some of them worked. Some of them didn’t. Some of them were the starting point for something bigger next year. Some of them were controversial (police involvement, anyone?) and I know there’s more work we need to do. But one of the amazing things was how many different groups of people showed up, and watching the ebb and flow of both familiar and new faces at the different events.
A gay organization from a bigger city thought they’d offer us some advice. The kindly told us that we were running too many events, and we should just focus on the important ones. The parade, the dance, the flag raising. Yeahhhh. When a fellow board member told me that, I had the same reaction he did. We both laughed. Important to who, is the question.
I’m not sharing all this just to brag that we’re awesome. (Even though I’m feeling pretty damn proud of our efforts right now, no pun intended.) None of this happened overnight, and none of it happened in isolation. We’ve had pushback from within our own community, that we’re too radical, and that we’re not radical enough. We’ve had acts of vandalism and passive-aggressiveness from the general public, and conversely, an amazing show of love and support. But none of it happens if people don’t show up, speak up, and if you have been the one speaking, shut up and listen.
Pride in your city may or may not be receptive to changing. But nothing will happen if it’s always the same people organizing, the same voices, and the same echo chamber. If you want to see change, let them know. If you can, put additional time and effort behind your voice and volunteer. If they won’t shift, do your own thing. 
You don’t need to be part of an official Pride celebration for your LGBTQ+ student organization to have a movie night and invite the public, to do a queer gaming event with a local comic shop, or to organize a Pride yarn bombing. These are just my ideas--you know your own interests, abilities, and connections. 
I am not advocating for anyone to do anything that will put their own safety or health at risk, but Pride doesn’t have to just be the big party, and it doesn’t have to just happen in big cities. If you think your town needs Pride events but are afraid it’s too small, I can hook you up with the organizers in a nearby agricultural, very religious town of less than 10,000 who had a BBQ and two flag raisings this year, the second time after the first flag was stolen. 
Community is important. Connection is important. Activism is made up of many small steps as well as the big gestures.
Happy Pride, everyone.
daemonluna: default icon, me with totoros (Default)
Yep. I am still doing this thing.

 Library Services at Elsewhere University: A Guide and Compendium; Part Two: Staff Handbook - Circulation Services

"As everyone in the department will tell you, Circ is the life-blood of the library, and keeps material flowing through its vast and beating heart. The Library would grind to a stagnant and useless standstill without the Circulation Department."
daemonluna: default icon, me with totoros (Default)
I seem to be on a finishing-things spree. Lest anyone get the wrong idea about my incredibly idiosyncratic fanfic productivity, most of this one was written three or four months ago, and just finished up today with the last couple paragraphs.

Considering that before this, I hadn't posted anything since 2006, I've been crazy-prolific (for me) with the odds and ends I've dug out, polished off, and thrown up on AO3 lately. There was the obscure anime secondary character femmeslash (in what is arguably already one of the gayest nineties anime out there), the classic eighties anime secondary character slash that had been out there but I just flat out forgot to post to AO3 with everything else (and boldly resister the urge to rewrite and edit because it was written fifteen-plus years ago), and the Hard Core Logo fic that was languishing on a back-up drive. I thiiiink that's all, other than the other continuing library au thing I've got on the go. (Although I do have a half-done Wilby Wonderful fic somewhere along the same how-can-I-queer-up-the-secondary-characters lines...)

But! I just do not understand how no-one has written a library AU of Parks and Rec. Seriously, fandom... seriously. So I finally did something about that.

Parks and Recreation AU: Pawnee Public Library Leslie Knope loves libraries (and hates the Parks Department, bunch of punk-ass dirt jockeys).
daemonluna: default icon, me with totoros (Default)
Tra-la-la, I continue to write headcanon pseudo-documentation style fanfic as a guidebook to a fictional university library. I may have also gone back and added linked annotations to chapters 1-2. Just sayin'.

Library Services at Elsewhere University: A Guide and Compendium

Part One: A Student's Guide to Library Services The library at Elsewhere University may be prone to unpredictable time patterns, nameless librarians, and L-space irregularities, but cataloguing, interlibrary loan charges, temperamental elevators, and waiving overdue fines are universal.

Appendix A: About The Librarians If the Library needs you, it will take you. If you are lucky, it will be on your terms, at a time of your choosing. In most cases, a masters' degree in library and information sciences from a nationally-certified graduate program is required, though in some rare cases, an equivalent combination of education and experience may be considered.

NEW! Part Two: Staff Handbook - General Introduction There are numerous challenges to working in a university library. Shrinking budgets, rising costs, proprietary and predatory database licenses for peer-reviewed content, entitled faculty, clueless undergraduates, and inappropriate behaviour in the stacks. Predatory shadow creatures, migrating stacks leading to misplaced range markers on the shelves in the Deep Library, time management issues, and the inevitable workplace frustrations of whose turn it is to clean out the staff room fridge, and how come the same three people are the only ones to sign up for the weekly search party rota out into the Deep Library stacks?
daemonluna: default icon, me with totoros (Default)
 About  non-existent magic university libraries. Because I can.

Appendix A: About The Librarians  "If the Library needs you, it will take you. If you are lucky, it will be on your terms, at a time of your choosing. In most cases, a masters' degree in library and information sciences from a nationally-certified graduate program is required, though in some rare cases, an equivalent combination of education and experience may be considered."
daemonluna: default icon, me with totoros (Default)
I continue to have Opinions on the internet.

I have seen one too many pieces of fic on AO3, or fanart on Tumblr, (or vice versa) with tags or author's notes bemoaning how much it sucks. (And here I will say here on LJ, it makes me feel old and want to pat people on the head and give them cookies and a fuzzy blanket.)  So here is what I told the internet, whether or not they're listening.


Dear creators,

Artists and authors and creative people of all types, please do something. For me, and for the rest of your audience, and most of all, for yourself.
Please stop apologizing. Don’t put down your work.
I know it’s hard. I know sometimes all you can see are the flaws and mistakes, and all the million ways it doesn’t match what’s in your head.
It’s okay.
I know it’s frustrating, and it’s so hard not to compare it to your own vision, and to what other people can do. It’s okay to still be learning. (It’s better to never stop learning.) It’s okay to not be perfect. (Spoiler alert: it will never be perfect.)
Be proud and own it. Put it out there trusting that it will bring someone joy. 
Take the compliment. Don’t put your own work down when someone tells you they love it. Just say thanks. It’s okay to own the bits that didn’t turn out, but don’t forget to claim the parts that went right too, and the work that went into it.
I used to teach storytelling, and borrowed the words of the person who came before me. Storytellers are magic. Don’t worry when you make a mistake. Never stop and apologize. Just keep going, because you’re the only one who knows the way you meant the story to go. Your audience doesn’t care, because storytellers are magic. 
Here’s a secret. Making something from nothing is magic. You are all magic, and you don’t need to apologize. It’s okay to be proud of your work.
So stop saying sorry. Just say thanks. You’re magic, and we love you.
daemonluna: default icon, me with totoros (Default)
 Watching Moana, me: Is it just me, or is “Shiny” a drag queen anthem in the making?
Barb: Yeah, sounds about right.
IMDB: “Lin-Manuel Miranda has stated the character of Tamatoa the Giant Crab was a tribute to musician David Bowie.“

daemonluna: default icon, me with totoros (Default)
 So I stumbled across a short one-shot web comic on Tumblr. Coexisting With The Fair Folk Who Have Taken Up Residence In/Around/Beneath Your University: A How-To Guide.

And it turns out in the past month and a bit, it's spawned a whole fandom, and I've been skimming through all the accumulating bits and pieces of newly-minted fanon.

And I have Opinions about depictions of libraries and librarians in pop culture. So I wrote a thing
daemonluna: default icon, me with totoros (Default)
Um, yeah. I'm kind of a multifandom reader?

No Less Unthinkable
“In which Katsuki Yuuri fights a losing battle with chronic anxiety, the quadruple Salchow, and his own judgment four drinks in — but wins the war.” RAGEPRUFROCK WROTE YURI ON ICE FIC. This fills me with an immense amount of joy and the same sort of flail-at-the-screen glee that accompanied watching YOI to start with.

I Love You, I Want You, I Need You
We mainlined the first half of the new season of Call The Midwife over the weekend, and I went looking for Delia/Patsy fic. What I found... Delia and Patsy (and pretty much everyone else) compete on The Gigantic British Baking Fete. Oh fanfic, I love you. Picture Sister Monica Joan as Mary Berry, and start there… Sweet and hilarious.

Theft of Assets, Destruction of Property
"Surely it is a mistake to allow a single youthful indiscretion to cloud an already promising career." I was on a Harry Potter kick. Draco/Neville. Angst, domesticity, and baking.

Before and After (In a Long, Long Life) (series)
"Or: The one where they make a Howling Commandos TV show, and Steve gets called in to consult." I did not know that I needed an Avengers/Tanya Huff's Blood & Smoke vampire books crossover until I saw it.
daemonluna: Sliced hot pepper (food hot peppers)
 Operation: use all the leftovers/clean out the freezer continues.

Supper last night: leftover pot roast with roasted root veg (potato, carrot, turnip, parsnip, and onion), and Hungarian cabbage with cranberries. (A modified version of the red cabbage with cherries recipe from Julie Van Rosendaal's Out of the Orchard cookbook.)

Tonight: leftover cabbage with gnocchi and sausage, and maybe a soft-poached egg on top.

Tomorrow: leftover pot roast and root veg with beets and sauerkraut added to leftover gravy and chicken stock for a beef stew/borscht hybrid.

Not totally sure about Tuesday, but it probably needs to involve broccoli and half a block of soft tofu.

The frozen rum balls are all gone, incidentally. But there is shredded zucchini, frozen in one cup portions just to make chocolate zucchini muffins.... hmm...
daemonluna: default icon, me with totoros (Default)
 It is the cranky season right now. Like clockwork, between New Year's and the provincial stat towards the end of Feb, everyone just gets really crabby--at work in particular. 


Anyhow. Do you need a fanvid of footage of the women's marches? I bet you do.

And I'm loving the rogue government agency Twitter accounts. Subversion by social media ! (If anyone sees fanfic about Leslie Knope and the rogue Parks department Twitter account--ACTUALLY REAL RIGHT NOW AND NOT FICTION. Not to mention some epic Twitter trolling from Miriam Webster. (Yes, the dictionary.) And this popped up on my Facebook feed tonight--a planned social media Day of Facts from museums and cultural institutions.

And if you still need something to lift your spirits, why not some Badass Historical LGBT Women Who Gave Absolutely No Fucks?
daemonluna: default icon, me with totoros (Default)
Step one: post fanfic (back-dated) that I genuinely forgot I wrote. Old-school nineties anime, unaltered from its 2001 form. Video Girl Ai, Geometric Progression, in which I make a secondary character gay. Don't judge my early-twenties self for the angst, woe, and probable overuse of adverbs.

Step two: post fanfic I wrote and abandoned on my hard drive. Obscure nineties anime, with a few small continuity tweaks now that I've seen the whole series. Oniisama E.../Brother Dear Brother, The Sharp-Winged Bird in the Gilded Cage, in which I make another secondary character gay. (Not that Oniisama E... needs much help on that front.) No apologies for angst and woe in this fandom, ha.

Step three: Finish Oniisama E... fic with the unlikely pairing of Miya-sama/Kaoru no Kimi. 

Step four: Finish the rambling headcanon type Parks and Rec library AU fanfic, because someone should. (How is there no AU for this fandom where Leslie loves libraries and hates the Parks department??) Not quite there yet, but US friends, if someone wants to answer a few questions on American library systems, let me know. (Would a town in Indiana belong to a bigger consortium or system, for example? Who would do their cataloguing?)

Step five: Convince self that neither Yuri On Ice or Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu need (any more) potentially-angsty vignette-style fanfic. I'll let you know how that turns out...

daemonluna: default icon, me with totoros (Default)
We just finished watching Showa Genroku Rakugo Shinju. Oh, my heart.

It's a historical drama that revolves around the people and politics behind rakugo, a form of traditional Japanese storytelling. The first episode opens in the seventies, with a young guy who's just gotten out of jail, and has decided he's going to start his new life by convincing one of the current master storytellers to take him on as an apprentice. Things get... more complicated than he expected from here on in. The rest of the first season skips back to mostly the 40's in post-war Japan to show the evolution of the master's career and life, and his complicated relationship with his best friend and rival, and his art. 

Also, it is pretty damn queer. None of the characters are explicitly gay (or trans, possibly? kinda gender-queer?), but given the historical and social context, it feels like a realistic queer-ish narrative with something to say about restrictive gender roles rather than a bait-and-switch. I may have more to say about this after some time to think about it. For now, I'll just say that I've developed a new appreciation for pretty young men in geisha dress after that one scene. It reminds me a little bit of Oniisama E... in the inevitable hurtling-towards-tragedy sense, but without the heightened melodrama-treated-deadly-serious. (This one ain't high school, kids.)

Recommended for: complex grown-up characters and relationships, storytelling (both within the scope of the series and literally, oral storytelling on-screen), immersion in Japanese culture and history, gorgeous backgrounds and imagery, behind-the scenes performing art culture, a critical look at restrictive gender roles, and a soundtrack with a mix of traditional Japanese music and jazz.

The first season comes to a definite and satisfying conclusion, but it's based on a completed ten-volume manga, and season two starts later this week and will likely finish off the series. I'm just going to leave the opening credits riiiiiight here, if you want a feel for the tone and mood of the series, or just a bit of gorgeousness. 

daemonluna: A girl in a red toque, kissing a snowman on the cheek (winter snowman kiss)
Yesss, DW is crossposting to Tumblr for me selectively. Oddly though, my posts appear to be showing up everywhere but on DW, which is where I'm posting from. (But there's a link back to the direct entry, from the LJ post?) Maybe I'll wait and see if things show up overnight. (ETA: Well, that was weird. DW was trying to restore from an old draft, and was backdating everything to Jun. Huh.)

You can find me on Tumblr, unimaginatively, as Daemonluna, mostly flailing over Yuri On Ice at the moment. I wanted to see if I could get DW crossposting because I still find Tumblr really, I don't know, transitory? Anyhow, we'll see how far my good intentions about posting take me.

daemonluna: default icon, me with totoros (Default)
I am trying a thing and want to see if cross-posting from Dreamwidth to Tumblr is working, so I figured I'd post something useful. I unearthed a gruesome-looking quantity of chicken and turkey bones in the freezer, and have turned it into two large batches of stock, which reminded me that I wrote down my chicken stock making directions for someone a while ago.

Advanced soup-making, or, How to make chicken soup stock (which is not hard at all but takes time): It is not as complicated as it looks! The basics are: take bones and veggies, add water, simmer for a long time, strain, and skim the fat off if you want.
The long version, with commentary:

Take chicken bones. (We usually put the bones in the freezer when we get a whole chicken, either from take-out or pre-cooked at the grocery store, or when we roast chicken or turkey. You can also use turkey necks, which are cheap in the meat section at the grocery store. There can still be meat on the bones, but there doesn't have to be.) If in doubt, the leftover bones from a pre-roasted grocery store chicken isn't a bad place to start. Put in your biggest pot and fill up with cold water. I'm assuming this is the kind of big pot that holds 5-6 L and can easily boil spaghetti. If it's a smaller pot and your spaghetti barely fits, cut the quantities in half.

Add four or five carrots, four or five pieces of celery, and a couple onions. Roughly chop into big chunks--it's all going to get tossed at the end, anyhow. Add a couple bay leaves, pepper or whole peppercorns, and salt, about a tablespoon of each, less if you're using ground pepper. Bring to a boil. Turn down to a low simmer. Let it simmer for eight hours at least, checking every once and a while to make sure it hasn't boiled down too low. Add more water if it needs it. Taste occasionally after six or seven hours. 
If it's not chicken-y enough, it might need more time, just need to reduce more, or need more salt. Eight hours is my default, but I have left it barely simmering on really low overnight, and it cooked for more than twenty-four hours and was awesome. You could use a slow cooker too for overnight.

I also have forgotten to check the water, left the burner up too high, and ended up with scorched veggies and chicken bones and nothing usable. Oops. I once accidentally dumped all the stock down the drain and kept the boiled bones, because my brain went into pasta-cooking mode on autopilot. Don't do that, either. 
When it's done, strain the stock into a big bowl or pitcher, throw out the bones and veggies, and put it in the fridge for a few hours--or overnight. Then the fat will solidify on top and be easy to scoop off. You can skip this step if you want, and just use the stock right away. It may solidify a bit in the fridge because of the collagen in the bones--don't worry if it turns into a semi-solid wobbly jelly. It will liquify when you heat it up. Use within four or five days, or freeze. If you freeze it in portion-sized baggies, you can add noodles and leftover chicken and veggies for a quick bowl of soup, or use it for rice, or other cooking. Some people freeze stock in ice cube trays to use for cooking, too.
How to make vegetable stock:
Take three or four carrots, some celery (four or five stalks), and a couple onions. Chop into big chunks. Add a bay leaf or two, peppercorns, and salt. Other things to optionally add are mushrooms, leeks (if you use the whites for something, save the green ends for soup), parsley, or thyme. If it's going wilt-y in the fridge, it's still perfectly good for soup. I sometimes toss leftover and wilted bits of vegetables into the freezer for later.  Don't add broccoli, kale, cauliflower, or anything cabbage-y, or that's all your soup will taste like. Same goes for peppers. Add cold water, bring to a boil, then turn down and simmer for about an hour or so. Strain, toss the veggies, and use the stock to make soup or rice or whatever else.
How to make shrimp stock:
When you have shrimp and de-tail them, use the tails to make stock, or freeze them until you have a bunch, which I usually define as the ziplock sandwich bag of shrimp tails is full. Put in cold water, add salt and spices of your choice (peppercorns, bay leaf, star anise, ginger, dried lime leaves, and.or lemongrass, depending on what sort of flavours you want), simmer for about an hour. If it's tasting a bit bland, boil for longer or add a slog of Vietnamese fish sauce.

Basic comfort food soup, once you have stock :  
Chop up an onion, and three or four carrots and stalks of celery. Sear in some olive or vegetable oil. Add chicken stock and a couple chopped potatoes. Add salt and pepper to taste, and a bay leaf if you feel like it. Simmer for about forty-five minutes. Add some milk or cream, take out the bay leaf, and blend if you want smooth, creamy soup. Other good additions (that I wouldn't necessarily blend except for the cauliflower) for a more substantial soup include cauliflower, green or yellow beans, kale or spinach, and chicken, sausage, or whatever else soup-like is languishing in your fridge. You can also try only blending half of it, to save some of the pieces of veggie. Good with a squeeze of lemon juice at the end. 

My basic principles of soup: substitute and estimate freely and often. Taste as you go. Soup is excellent for using things up, and is almost always just as good if not better the second day. Most soups are improved with a spoonful of lemon juice or apple cider vinegar stirred in at the very end.
To summarize: I like soup.
daemonluna: A girl in a red toque, kissing a snowman on the cheek (winter snowman kiss)
General goal: use up the contents of the fridge and small cube freezer by springtime. We have a lot of produce from the summer's CSA boxes, as well as leftovers and bits of things to be turned into other things. Like soup. I made a big batch of ham-and-turkey-and-chicken stock for borscht a few weeks ago, and was pretty sure I had another bag of turkey bones. Um. I uncovered what probably adds up to two turkeys and three and a half chickens' worth of bones. I'm going to have to do two batches in my big 10L stock pot. 

Immediate goal: eat all the rum balls from the freezer (that *cough* have been in there for two years now) before I go back to work in Jan. 
daemonluna: default icon, me with totoros (Default)
 Anime-watching friends, who else is watching Yuri On Ice? Because it looks an awful lot like they're headed to a canonical gay romance, a well-developed, well-rounded, incredibly sweet gay romance between two adults. With figure skating that is sparkly and fandom says is quite technically accurate. On a mainstream anime series.

As I just emailed 
[personal profile] zulu  and [personal profile] bell , who suggested it to us, I have progressed from oh, cute and slashy, to THIS IS SO GAAYYYYY! THEY ARE SO IN LUUUUUV! to just a string of incoherent high-pitched squeaking noises.

I was cautiously optimistic that it wouldn't be too queerbait-y, but oh!
 They are in LOVE. And I am full of glee.

daemonluna: default icon, me with totoros (Default)
I got militant on Facebook, friends. So I decided to share here, too, even though I think there are only three or four of you still reading.

My library's been hosting some events for Pride this month. Weekly movies, an author event, a meet-up play date for the local queer parent group. Last Wednesday, we went out to watch Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. The Pride Fest organizers had a photo op set up with the festival banners, and a white board to finish the sentence, "I need Pride because..."

And we got there just on time, and I didn't have a snappy phrase ready. And the movie ended, and it was late and I was tired, and my half-formed thoughts about inclusiveness and visibility hadn't come together yet.
We need Pride. We need Pride because fifty people are dead in an Orlando gay bar. Because last year, someone shouted "fucking fags" at the crowd during the Pride flag raising at City Hall. Because I spent Thursday afternoon drafting an email with a coworker to respond to a customer complaint about the Pride display at the library branch, and the library's endorsement of homosexual propaganda, and she was indignant, and I was just tired. Because when my wife and I held hands across the table at IHOP last year, we got a heartfelt note from our server on the back of the receipt, because he didn't feel brave enough to hold hands with his boyfriend in public. Because my wife felt that she needed to tell the B&B owners in Drumheller that we were a gay couple when she made the reservation for a trip last weekend.

We need Pride because the outrage and sorrow at the Orlando shootings has been, in the mainstream media I've seen, free from any implied blame of the victims' "lifestyle" for their deaths. Because at the flag raising last year, the crowd was several hundred people strong, and one of our elected officials was speaking at the time. Because I know that I'm not defending the library's participation in Pride events to our CEO and board, that my colleague could call the City's diversity and inclusion officer for advice, that my coworkers will be walking with me (on work time) in the Pride parade. Because I didn't think twice about holding my wife's hand at IHOP, and the B&B owners didn't bat an eye and were incredibly friendly and accommodating.

Because it wasn't always this way.

It gets better because we're making it better. It's hard. Some days are harder than others, and in the aftermath of tragedy, it's easy to lose sight of how far we've come. But, my friends and dear ones, please, keep showing up. All identities and orientations, keep showing up. We need to know we're all in this together. Stop and listen to your friends who are angry and heartbroken by violence, and tell them you love them. Come to Pride, to the parade and party, or the movie, or the author event, or anything else, and show that you think it's important and that our community is part of something bigger. Speak up when you see hate or ignorance. Speak up in the face of indifference.

Because you are, and you do, and you will. And I have to believe, it will get better, because we've made it so far already.


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September 2017

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