Open Thread with Flying Fish Tail Trail

The pattern made by this Pink-wing flying fish’s tail as it leaps from the water features for this week’s Open Thread. Please natter/chatter/vent/rant on anything* you like over this weekend and throughout the week.

A Pink-wing flying fish launches into the air leaving a sinusoidal trail in the waves

So, what have you been up to? What would you rather be up to? What’s been awesome/awful?
Reading? Watching? Making? Meeting?
What has [insert awesome inspiration/fave fansquee/guilty pleasure/dastardly ne’er-do-well/threat to all civilised life on the planet du jour] been up to?

* Netiquette footnotes:
* There is no off-topic on the Weekly Open Thread, but consider whether your comment would be on-topic on any recent thread and thus better belongs there.
* If your comment touches on topics known to generally result in thread-jacking, you will be expected to take the discussion to #spillover instead of overshadowing the social/circuit-breaking aspects of this thread.

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42 comments for “Open Thread with Flying Fish Tail Trail

  1. pheenobarbidoll
    August 15, 2014 at 10:42 pm

    Finally watched Doctor Who. Binged on 9-11. Way better than the classics. I couldn’t stand those.

  2. Donna L
    August 15, 2014 at 11:02 pm

    Even though it’s been almost three months (which seems impossible) since my father died, I keep dreaming regularly that he’s still alive. It’s very unsettling when I wake up from dreams like that. Not that I should really be surprised, though — I still sometimes dream that my mother is alive, even though she died when I was 20 years old. When I do dream about her, it’s the only time I’m able to remember what her voice sounded like. Within a couple of years of her death, I somehow must have blocked out the conscious memory of her voice (perhaps because it was too painful? Who knows?), and haven’t been able to remember it since, no matter how hard I try. In my dreams, though, it isn’t painful to hear her. It makes me happy. And it makes me happy to see my father again.

    • pheenobarbidoll
      August 16, 2014 at 1:21 am

      Someone once told me when you dream of a loved one that has died, it’s the loved one visiting you. Their spirit can reach you in dreams. I don’t know if this is true or not, but I hope so.

      • Yonah
        August 16, 2014 at 5:20 pm

        I heard this from my family too, that you can expect “visit” dreams for a year or so after death. I don’t know that it’s something to believe or not to believe, but that it’s one way of expressing that gulf of loss and the way the memories do seem to visit us. And actually I am not sure of the real difference between a memory and a ghost, except that perhaps it indicates how we feel about it.

        DonnaL, I think it’s really special that your brain found a way both to let you hear your mother’s voice from time to time and to prevent it from causing you pain.

      • August 16, 2014 at 10:10 pm

        I remember having a dream about my grandfather about 6 years after he died. I came into my kitchen and he was at the table with four other old guys, playing poker. I didn’t know this, but my grandfather was an avid poker player.

        I gave him a hug and asked how it was going and he said “Pretty good, pretty good. I’m winning.”

        I woke up feeling really good, like that was his way of telling me he was okay.

        I’m not a huge believer in an afterlife, but I would be lying if I said there wasn’t a part of me that felt like it was some kind of message of comfort, either from beyond, or from my own psyche.

      • Donna L
        August 18, 2014 at 1:11 am

        Thanks, Yonah (and all). As much as I’d like to, I don’t really believe that any of my dreams come from anyplace other than my own head, but I don’t think that really matters much. Wherever they come from, I can still take comfort from seeing my parents again, and even hearing my mother’s voice again once in a while. My dreams are real and meaningful to me when I’m having them, at least, and even though I can never retain the memory of my mother’s speech after I wake up, I can remember how good it felt to hear her.

  3. Alexandra
    August 16, 2014 at 2:42 am

    Been a long time since I commented on this blog, but something I need to get off my chest that I know folks here will understand better than most.

    I deactivated my facebook account today because I keep seeing the name of the man who raped me popping up in friends’ comments, etc. I never went public about it, so most people don’t know (though some who do know have made the deliberate decision to keep knowing him despite what he did to me).

    The thing that pushed me over the edge, though, was being linked to his website and blog, where, among other things, he’s written about feminist ethics and the nature of consent.

    So, that was kind of upsetting.

    • PrettyAmiable
      August 16, 2014 at 2:05 pm

      What a fucking asshole. I am so sorry your friends haven’t been more supportive of you. I can’t imagine being so deeply in denial about a person that I would continue being friends with a rapist. You shouldn’t have had to deactivate your facebook account, but I’m glad you did something to maintain your own mental health. That guy is a piece of work.

    • Echo Zen
      August 20, 2014 at 2:29 am

      The optimist in me would like this think maybe he looked back, realised in hindsight what he did was wrong and decided to start writing about it to educate others.

      But I’m rarely an optimist on these things. :-/

  4. Clytemnestra's Sister
    August 16, 2014 at 1:03 pm

    I work on ships for a living and I LOVE flying fish. They sparkle like little silver jewels in the sun when they fly by. Sometimes we get to see them swimming by the ship, and they’re almost translucent and ghostly.

    TigTog, is the pink-winged species local to you? Never seen one like that in the northern hemisphere, they’re usually blue.

    • August 16, 2014 at 5:33 pm

      I’m jelly, CS – I’ve never seen a flying fish in real life. I just saw an image of them on a QI episode a few weeks ago with that fascinating sinusoidal tail trail through the waves, and started googling for Creative Commons images that showed it, and this one popped up.

      • Clytemnestra's Sister
        August 17, 2014 at 5:39 pm

        They’re amazing little beasties for sure.

  5. GracieGrace
    August 16, 2014 at 8:28 pm

    Haven’t written in awhile, but it’s been a super good couple weeks. I kicked a guy out of my life that was wearing me down, my roommate and I got the place downtown we wanted (the search was literally one of the most stressful things I’ve ever had to do as an adult so far), I got into the Women’s Studies class I’ve been on the waitlist for a month and a half for, my phone bill was less than I thought it was this month, my friend just moved here from England on a visa for at least a year… I just want to hug everyone because after months of being down, things have finally turned in a good direction.

  6. August 16, 2014 at 10:18 pm

    I currently have a house full of preadolescent girls. Being able to overhear some of their conversations is… interesting. They’re at the age where the social heirarchy is really starting to form, but also where they are starting to also think critically about things..

    In other news, my parents run a local magazine that has a joke of the week in every issue. I had a proud-mommy moment when I found out my youngest called up my mother and called her to the carpet for the ‘blonde’ joke that they ran last week, because stereotypes aren’t cool.

    Turns out the joke was a subversion of the ‘dumb blonde’ trope, but I am still proud as hell that my kid had the guts to call out her own Grammy. *I* don’t have that kind of nerve.

  7. August 17, 2014 at 12:01 pm

    [CN – death, murder stuff]

    So, file this under ‘my life keeps getting weirder’:

    I found out last night that my ex-boyfriend is sitting in jail, waiting to go on trial for killing two people while driving under the influence. He’s facing two murder charges, two vehicular manslaughter, and one DUI. It’s not his first DUI, so I think that is the reason for the severity of the charge. He could potentially spend the rest of his life in prison.

    I don’t even have words. Maybe flummoxed. I’m not sure.

    • Kerandria
      August 17, 2014 at 10:25 pm

      I’m… I’m so sorry. I can’t imagine all that you’re feeling right now.

    • pheenobarbidoll
      August 17, 2014 at 11:26 pm

      Pretty sure the majority of my exes are either in prison or have been. One went after he joined the aryan brotherhood and was selling meth, among other things.

      • August 17, 2014 at 11:33 pm

        Yeah, it’s slowly sinking in. We hadn’t really been talking, so I didn’t realize something was up. It’s just mostly sad, but I’m also just so pissed off at him that he could be that thoughtless. I don’t know.

  8. August 17, 2014 at 11:35 pm

    I put up a new video on YouTube. A book review of Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan.

    • gratuitous_violet
      August 22, 2014 at 12:50 pm

      Hi! If you don’t mind a slightly OT question (I’m at work and can’t listen to the video, so it’s not about the content), what’s the tattoo on the inside of your left arm? I am intrigued, and saving for my own tattoo, so I’m at the stage where I want to ask EVERYONE about theirs :).

      • gratuitous_violet
        August 22, 2014 at 7:48 pm

        RIGHT arm. I have no sense of direction.

      • August 23, 2014 at 2:44 am

        That one says ‘beautiful’. There’s a full description of all my tattoos with pictures on my blog.

    • August 23, 2014 at 12:01 am

      I put up a new video on YouTube. A book review of Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan.

      Wow, I just ‘read’ that book on a flight to London. I say ‘read’ in quotes because I actually listened to the audiobook. I mostly share your opinion of it. That is to say, not great, but not terrible and it keeps your attention. I was enjoying it through the entire flight, yet I didn’t finish it, due to the audiobook being longer than the flight, and in the 4 months since I never had the desire to listen to the final hour or so.

      Your video was really good too, especially as your comments on your youtube say this is a new thing for you. You have a very natural way of communicating, and your sincerity comes across. I didn’t watch your one about drunk driving because I didn’t want to be depressed tonight and the word ‘horrible’ appeared in your comments, but would totally watch another book review.

      • August 23, 2014 at 2:42 am

        Thanks for the feedback, Steve. I wouldn’t reccommend watching that other one if you’ve been down, but I’m going to post some more fun ones and book reviews soon.

  9. pheenobarbidoll
    August 19, 2014 at 8:41 pm

    So I’m feeling a bit better. I think just being able to say I’m under enormous stress helped. Though I still feel like I’m punched in the gut whenever I see something Robin Williams related. I think it was just the last straw. Too much stress, too much horror on the news, Gaza, Syria, Ferguson and then Williams. I’ve stopped looking at anything negative and that’s helped too. Just funny stuff and nothing bad.

    • August 20, 2014 at 1:56 am

      pheenobarbidoll, May I present, the funniest thing on the internet.

      • pheenobarbidoll
        August 20, 2014 at 10:18 am


    • Yonah
      August 20, 2014 at 1:46 pm

      I think your plan (nothing negative) is probably even more constructive and awesome than meets the eye. Can’t help but notice that constant exposure to the most negative news desensitises us to horror, to the humanity of others, and incapacitates us as we grow increasingly convinced that the status quo is invulnerable. It’s not about shutting yourself off to “reality,” it’s about resisting the constantly-broadcast message that we don’t matter.

      • pheenobarbidoll
        August 20, 2014 at 3:03 pm

        I think my own stress had just left me too weak to fight, then all the horrible news sapped even more from me and my brain just shut down the ability to care in an attempt at self preservation. Any attempt to get me to engage made me angry, like people were trying to take my safety buffer away. And I hate to say it like this but I think Robin Williams suicide shocked me out of it, so I could feel again and now I feel all the feels. That sounds terrible, like I benefit from his pain, but it’s the only thing that makes sense. So now I’m extra emotional over it because there’s no emotional buffer and I feel crappy that I’m not a rage zombie at the expense of someone else. Or, and this is just as likely, I’m still depressed but now instead of feeling nothing I’m feeling it all. Either way, I made the decision to only watch upbeat, happy things. The crying at the drop of a hat was getting on my nerves. I’d rather laugh.

      • pheenobarbidoll
        August 21, 2014 at 10:32 pm

        And now having All The Feels really sucks. I’m a walking exposed nerve. Jesus christ.

      • Yonah
        August 22, 2014 at 5:59 am

        :( I’m so sorry, Pheeno.

        Have you seen this, by the way?

  10. Anna
    August 20, 2014 at 4:33 pm

    Request for a Wikipedia editor: A consensus has been reached to change the page “Woman” on Wikipedia so that the picture of a bust of Sappho in the grid of pictures to the right is replaced with a picture of famous transgender woman Christine Jorgensen. Problem is, none of us who have been editing that page lately know how to do that. Can somebody please do that for us?

    That would be super awesome. The page really needs a picture of a transgender woman for representation (we settled on Christine Jorgensen as she is one of the best-known transgender women.)

    Thank you in advance!

    • Anna
      August 22, 2014 at 10:35 am

      Nevermind, we got this. Decided to use Laverne Cox instead though.

  11. gratuitous_violet
    August 21, 2014 at 10:36 pm

    [tw for violence]

    Part of my job is helping kids shape and edit their college application essays. My favorite student in the whole world, who already wants to be a gender studies major, has volunteered at a DV program for undocumented women, breezes confidently into my office to say things like “have you read this great book called The Revolution Begins At Home?” and often peppers her complaints about school dudes with “because patriarchy,” gave me an essay about being sexually assaulted at 15 by her mentor when she was abroad at a summer program. It’s beautiful, and I started to cry really hard, and she says “no, don’t be sad for me! I’ve moved on to anger, it’s much more productive!”

    I am awestruck by her resilience and humbled by her trust in me, but hearing these things still makes me go into an emotional tailspin.

  12. Echo Zen
    August 22, 2014 at 12:28 pm

    Wow, I’m impressed she even knows about “Revolution Begins at Home”, since I’m sure a lot of us here have never heard of it. (For those wondering, it’s an anthology about activists who secretly abuse other activists.) With a desire to learn and help others like that, she’ll go far in life.

    • gratuitous_violet
      August 22, 2014 at 12:48 pm

      Apparently, all the members of her feminist studies summer internship at Local Big Important Private University were given it to read before they began volunteering at DV organizations. But it’s so cool! She doesn’t even drive yet and she’s already so far ahead of where I was at that age.

  13. pheenobarbidoll
    August 28, 2014 at 5:37 pm

    It’s official. We have until the house sells and then we’re homeless.

    • Donna L
      August 28, 2014 at 7:05 pm

      I’m so sorry, Pheeno.

    • August 29, 2014 at 1:25 am

      That sucks.

    • trees
      August 29, 2014 at 12:30 pm


      I really wish I had something more to offer beyond what was already said, but damn, that really sucks and I’m so sorry.

    • EG
      August 29, 2014 at 6:41 pm

      Crap. I’m so sorry. I’m so so sorry.

    • Echo Zen
      August 29, 2014 at 8:38 pm


Comments are closed.