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[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Thanks to a donation from [personal profile] dialecticdreamer, there are 23 new verses in "The Higher a Monkey Climbs."  Jules and Pips discuss how to support G's family after the fire.

Poem: "Black Swan Lake"

Sep. 23rd, 2017 08:55 pm
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[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
This is the freebie for the September 2017 [community profile] crowdfunding Creative Jam. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] wyld_dandelyon. It also fills the "merfolk" square in my 9-1-17 card for the Pirate Fest bingo.

"Black Swan Lake"

She swims,
her long neck
a graceful curve,
her black feathers
sleek and unruffled.

she changes.

She swims,
her two feet
now a single fin,
her black breasts
bobbing in the water.

In both forms, she
is the secret mistress
of Black Swan Lake.

* * *


See the black swan in bird form and mermaid form.

Mermaids appear in legends from around the world, including Africa.

[personal profile] dragonlady7
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i can’t believe a single tweet by lebron james restored my entire will to live

nothing but respect for MY president

Everybody go and follow LeBron on twitter. I want more people to follow him than the bum, and it’s a very attainable goal.

do it
[personal profile] dragonlady7
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L'shana Tova! I’d never had honey cake before but it turns out Our Daily Bread makes a delicious one! Here’s hoping for a sweet new year.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
I finished this earlier in the week, and decided to offer it for the half-price sale since it's so big that it's unlikely to sell for full price.

"Branded in His Memory"
Summary: A mass-casualty incident brings Ansel to the Christian Care Rescue Mission in Bluehill. It's an ugly mess, but he does a wonderful job of helping everyone recover -- not just from their fresh injuries, but whatever put them in a homeless shelter to begin with.
$1555 lines, was $778, sale price $389, quarter-price $194.50

I'd rather not open another epic for microfunding, but this one is big enough that if you buy the whole thing (or pool with someone to do so) then it automatically gets the quarter-price rate.  That's true for any of the other epics that cost $100 or more.

Saturday Yardening

Sep. 23rd, 2017 04:41 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Today is hot, muggy, and sunny as I discovered when I went outdoors to plant bulbs.  I wound up watering plants, and only planting the fist-sized purple frittilaria bulb in the purple-and-white garden.

Many of the flowers are drying up, although a few are still blooming.  Sedum and goldenrods are flowering vigorously.

Still not much activity at the birdfeeders, but we saw a squirrel doing acrobatics on the hopper feeder and another bird near the fly-through feeder that may have been a phoebe or a flycatcher.  It was dark with a white belly, but seemed to have more of a crest than a dark-eyed junco.

EDIT 9/23/17 -- I went back out and planted 12 blue miniature iris.  I put 4 each in the purple-and-white garden, goddess garden, and wildflower garden.  \o/

I need to get out and gather/redistribute seeds.  Many of my wildflowers have gone to seed.  :D
[personal profile] dragonlady7
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Seals from the Intergalactic Passport book.
[personal profile] dragonlady7
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edit: oh, this wouldn’t post last night. Let’s see if it works now?

My entire self hurts.

I spent 12 hours yesterday cleaning out Middle-Little’s apartment. Got down there before 8 am, packed and tidied and cleaned. Hauled two carloads of stuff– mostly, Rubbermaid totes full of her shit from two moves ago, plus assorted bits of furniture– out of the apartment and up to the farm. Kept constantly having to chivvy her along, as she moaned and Felt Anxiety and Was Tired and so on.

I can’t tell you how many tote bags I picked up and emptied of Panic Tidying Residue– a handful of unopened mail, a couple of pens, a hairtie or two, a half-empty water bottle, some unexpected object or other like, I dunno, the instruction manual for her iron, or a brand-new tube of mascara still in the bag with a receipt from June of 2016, or the keys to her luggage, or something. Clearly, it’s whatever was on the coffee table when someone was coming over and she’d left it until five minutes before until she attempted to tidy. (Possibly because at the time she was working two jobs and also in grad school, and only just arrived home herself; I’m just saying.)

The best was when those were nested. Inside the tote bag would be the above, and then another tote bag full of similar items. Rarely, I got a threefer, which was one of those things where the objects by themselves told a sad story. Sometimes it was like, the residue of some event, like, all the Christmas cards she’d been given at work, or something. (There was a lot of Christmas shit, because she had incapacitating pneumonia around that time, and also the Georgia kids were visiting so nobody was paying very much attention to Aunt Middle-Little, who was extremely ill and probably should not have been unattended.)

One of the bits of unopened mail contained the title to her car, by the way, so, it’s not like I could just disappear these. No, there had to be piles of unopened mail that I had to sort and set aside for her to pay attention to when she wasn’t So Overwhelmed.

And I was sympathetic, dear reader. I was. The whole time. It’s been weeks that I’ve been helping with this, and I have largely refrained from being cross, even when I’m busting my butt and she’s moaning to her cat about how hard life is. (Bitch, I know.)

We took both cars up at lunchtime to the farm, and have filled about a third of one of the empty grain bins in the granary with totes now. The deal, I think I’ve mentioned it on here? Maybe not? Middle-Little is invited to dinner at the farm once per week, which Farmsister wanted to do anyway, this is all my idea but Farmsister had already mentioned the dinner idea. And at these dinners, the first thing Middle-Little is to do when she arrives is to go and retrieve a tote from the grain bin section in the granary that is hers, and put it into her car.

And she is then to go home after a lovely dinner, and spend that week reabsorbing the contents of that bin into her life. If that means she throws them all out, fine. If that means she winds up with more clutter in her house as she is reunited with beloved possessions she can’t part with, fine; she has a week to get those objects put away.

Part of the plan, too, is that sometimes, to switch it up, Farmsister will bring her a tote, and visit her in her apartment, and help her. This may happen because a week was skipped, or because she has asked for help, or possibly because Farmsister’s mother-in-law is visiting again and she needs to escape. (This is the current situation. Jesus Christ this woman is Really Something.)

Anyway. We went back down after lunch and I tried very hard to crack the whip and get the last of the place tidied. I got through the last of the Anxiety Tote Bags; I wound up with an enormous bag, like one of those blue bags you can get at Ikea, filled with neatly rolled-up other tote bags (including those blue bags you can get at Ikea…)– i mean, filled. When I say there were a lot of fucking tote bags, there were a lot of fucking tote bags.

Because the evening plan was that Farmsister would come down, we’d all have dinner, and then she’d come back and actually lead the charge on cleaning. Farmsister is the kind of person who cleans things to within an inch of their lives. Farmsister is also not the kind of person who would have a lot of patience with the tote bags of tote bags. She would have opened the boxes from 2000 and made Middle-Little throw away everything in them. She doesn’t know what it’s like to have anxiety and she doesn’t know how to be kind to a hoarder.

Well, she does, but it’s hard for her, and we respect that, so we don’t make her do the part where it would be too easy to be mean to Middle-Little.

So, she came down, we went out for sliders and several beers (it was walking distance and we knew we’d be cleaning for hours, so we got silly), and then I kept up with the tidying and Farmsister cleaned like her life depended on it, and Middle-Little flitted around being distressed about it all.

At the end, her apartment was unrecognizable. It looks better than it has in about three and a half years. (She moved in four years ago.)

There’s some shit hidden behind the folding screen– mostly, though, it’s a file cabinet back there– and the trunk left foreground still needs the top cleaned off, and so does the desk. but really. There’s no before picture, but the area between the desk and where the folding screen is now was about four feet deep in cardboard boxes loosely filled with nested Anxiety Totes; next to the table there had been a typing desk, the table had been four feet deep with crap, and between the table and the door, where I’m standing, there had been two filing cabinets and each one had another two feet of crap on top of it.

In short, it had looked like my house does now, which. Let’s not.

Anyway. That’s what I did yesterday, and all last week really.

Today, I got out the door at 7:45 for flower harvest, and finished hanging up the leftover flower harvest for drying at about 6:15, and there’s still about two hours of work to do in processing some of the harvested flowers for drying that can’t just hang by their stems. But I’m so exhausted and all of me hurts.

I’d been thinking, there’s no chicken slaughter this week, I should have gone back to Buffalo this week, but I haven’t been idle one bit, so it’s just as well I didn’t.

One of the totes is all bathroom stuff; she moved, couldn’t find it, replaced everything, and then here it all is. I’m considering going through and assembling first aid kits for all the farm vehicles and work areas, then maybe making care packages for domestic violence victims or something. I don’t think Middle-Little really needs her spare old packets of Band-Aids and Pepto-Bismol back.

The only thing that really remains distressing is how poor Middle-Little is so constantly broke and crying about it, and yet simultaneously is constantly purchasing objects. I understand this object was on sale, but you would have saved even more money by simply not purchasing it. She is a smart person and presumably knows this, and yet, here we are.

My house looks like a hoarder bomb went off in it but at least I don’t own multiple carpets with the tags still on them or, what really stands out to me, forty-seven wallets. “I carried that one forever!” “It still has the tags on.” “Oh, it was cheap.” “It’s forty dollars marked down to twenty-four.” “Oh. Huh.”

Somehow in all of this I didn’t wind up with a wallet, which was a shame, because I don’t own one. But. I mean. Whatever. I did get a very nice purse. And a cosmetic mirror that was our grandmother’s. I just wish M-L would buy less shit in the first place. But I can wish a lot of things.

Working Around Microphones

Sep. 23rd, 2017 01:36 pm
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[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Recently I came across a couple of discussions about technology, public speaking, and accessibility. One of them is in [community profile] access_fandom and links to the other which is a Unitarian-Universalist post. The crux of the matter is that people with hearing impairment often need amplification in order to hear, but not everyone is willing or able to use a microphone. And those groups don't always know about each other's concerns, which causes friction.

Read more... )

One-Card Draw

Sep. 23rd, 2017 01:01 pm
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[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
 [personal profile] wyld_dandelyon is doing a one-card draw.  Tipping gets you an extra card, or you can buy a 5-card reading.
[personal profile] dragonlady7
via http://ift.tt/2wO202M:
The Monument in Troy’s Monument Square.
This is why I get real mad when I see traitor flags locally. We paid a high price in that war. (at Troy Waterfront Farmers Market)
[personal profile] dragonlady7
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Context: any reliable source will tell you that the language of flowers was only ever practiced by a handful of very narrow subcultures, and to anyone outside them, the selection and arrangement of a bouquet would have been essentially meaningless apart from its aesthetic value.

What many sources fail to emphasise is that even within those specialised subcultures, there was typically very little consensus regarding the meanings of particular blooms; a given bouquet could yield totally different readings according to different floriographic traditions, even if those traditions were contemporary with each other.

That in mind…

Concept: a group of young nobles resolve to aid in their friend’s romantic pursuits, and secretly have a bouquet proposing a formal courtship sent to a young lady of their acquaintance - in their friend’s name.

The recipient, however, adheres to a different floriographic tradition, in which the bouquet in question translates not as a request to initiate courtship, but as a solicitation for the services of a discreet assassin. By some horrifying coincidence, the young lady’s family indeed has a sideline in the assassination business, and though she herself has never taken on a contract before, she resolves that there’s no time like the present and sets about arranging her unwitting would-be paramour’s demise.

(One can either play it straight from there, or go with an escalating comedy of errors as bouquets admitting increasingly unlikely misinterpretations fly back and forth. Either works!)
[personal profile] dragonlady7
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#yurtlife I mean. It’s a temperature differential, and don’t get me wrong, I appreciate that, but. It could be a bigger one. This warm week has made me lazy about finishing my ceiling quilts. Time to get to work if I wanna stay out here until turkey processing!

Crowdfunding Creative Jam

Sep. 23rd, 2017 01:07 am
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
The [community profile] crowdfunding Creative Jam is now open with a theme of "black swans."

What I Have Written

"Black Swan Lake" is the freebie.

From this I got the free-verse poem "Revisitation." Shaeth hears a prayer from a long-time follower, and this time decides to answer it.
47 lines, Buy It Now = $20

From My Prompts 

[personal profile] alatefeline  has written the poem "I Don't See Black Swans" about compensation and decompensation.
[personal profile] dragonlady7
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Photo 1: fresh flower harvest (partial); photo 2: flower harvest for drying (partial) (at Laughing Earth)
[personal profile] dragonlady7
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Oh I would totally watch that. 

I went back into the barn for something else today and paused to look up again for the Horrifying Spectacle and found her, and then after a moment, realized she was in the wrong window. So I went over to the other window and— uhh there are two of them of similar size, in the two sequential windows. 
[personal profile] dragonlady7
via http://ift.tt/2jQJntP:To Understand Rising Inequality, Consider the Janitors at Two Top Companies, Then and Now:


Gail Evans and Marta Ramos have one thing in common: They have each cleaned offices for one of the most innovative, profitable and all-around successful companies in the United States.

For Ms. Evans, that meant being a janitor in Building 326 at Eastman Kodak’s campus in Rochester in the early 1980s. For Ms. Ramos, that means cleaning at Apple’s headquarters in Cupertino, Calif., in the present day.

In the 35 years between their jobs as janitors, corporations across America have flocked to a new management theory: Focus on core competence and outsource the rest. The approach has made companies more nimble and more productive, and delivered huge profits for shareholders. It has also fueled inequality and helps explain why many working-class Americans are struggling even in an ostensibly healthy economy.

The $16.60 per hour Ms. Ramos earns as a janitor at Apple works out to about the same in inflation-adjusted terms as what Ms. Evans earned 35 years ago. But that’s where the similarities end.

Ms. Evans was a full-time employee of Kodak. She received more than four weeks of paid vacation per year, reimbursement of some tuition costs to go to college part time, and a bonus payment every March. When the facility she cleaned was shut down, the company found another job for her: cutting film.

Ms. Ramos is an employee of a contractor that Apple uses to keep its facilities clean. She hasn’t taken a vacation in years, because she can’t afford the lost wages. Going back to school is similarly out of reach. There are certainly no bonuses, nor even a remote possibility of being transferred to some other role at Apple.

Yet the biggest difference between their two experiences is in the opportunities they created. A manager learned that Ms. Evans was taking computer classes while she was working as a janitor and asked her to teach some other employees how to use spreadsheet software to track inventory. When she eventually finished her college degree in 1987, she was promoted to a professional-track job in information technology.

Less than a decade later, Ms. Evans was chief technology officer of the whole company, and she has had a long career since as a senior executive at other top companies. Ms. Ramos sees the only advancement possibility as becoming a team leader keeping tabs on a few other janitors, which pays an extra 50 cents an hour.

They both spent a lot of time cleaning floors. The difference is, for Ms. Ramos, that work is also a ceiling.

Continue reading the main story
[personal profile] dragonlady7
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#nofilter I can never get the real color of these deep blue-purple morning glories. I know they’re basically a weed and not useful for the flower arrangements I’m harvesting for but they’re secretly my favorite. (at Laughing Earth)
[personal profile] dragonlady7
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Just a reminder: Heathenry does have a term for smoke-cleansing.
Recaning. To recan. (Or reocan, in Old West Saxon.) This is cleansing via smoke, whether through incense or a bundle of herbs put together for a particular type of cleansing. Juniper and mugwort are both favorites for this.
In case you’re wondering how to pronounce it, it sounds like reekening. The word “reeks” is actually derived from it, signifying a potent smell.
For Old Norse fans, this seems to be related to the work reykr. In case you were wondering, Reykjavik in Iceland translates to “Smoky Bay”.

*dances around the entire pagan community waving this post like a fucking banner* THANK YOU.

Just a little addendum: Mugwort can be dangerous due to mildly psychoactive properties in the herb. Use with caution and avail yourself of the following list of free-use alternatives:

Basil (any kind, noting that Sweet Basil smells the best)

Sage (any type, but keep in mind that White Sage is becoming endangered)




Cedar Tips or Shavings

Thyme (especially Lemon)



September 2017


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