Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Victorian clothes rock.

Little boy in store, staring at me: "Look at it, Mommy... It's right behind you."
Mom shushes him and doesn't look.
I go past to look for the (nonexistent) kerosene lamp chimneys.
Little boy: "Look at it, Mommy!"
Mom looks.
Little boy: "Isn't it pretty?"

I said thank you and smiled. He turned all bashful, like OH MY GOD IT SPOKE TO ME WHAT IS THIS FRESH HEAVEN

Thursday, October 06, 2016

My favorite part

This comes from a longer piece, but I've always liked it, and I have probably posted it here before:

For storms will rage and oceans roar
When Gabriel stands on sea and shore
And as he blows his wondrous horn
Old worlds die and new be born.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

The Art of Movement

FINALLY this book is coming out! I have been sort of gently nag-nudging the photographers for a couple years now about doing a book, and IT IS HERE! Observe:

Is this not glorious? I love these people. They're funny and awesome. We get along smashingly. They've taken some of the most beautiful pictures I've ever seen, at least of dancers. Apples and oranges with Hubble images and etc, you know.

One of my favorite dancers, Isabella Boylston, American Ballet Theater
Miriam Miller, New York City Ballet
Misty Copeland and Alexandre Hammoudi, American Ballet Theater
And a video featuring Isabella Boylston. I love this little short film. It's just fun and pretty. Enjoy!

Thursday, August 18, 2016

A Place Among the Undead

Juliet Landau, whom some readers may recall played the ever lovely and insane Drusilla on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, is producing the crowdfunded movie of the post's heading: A Place Among the Undead. It will involve a series of interviews with people most deeply involved with the vampire genre, along with delving into vampire mythology and as it has grown through the ages; basically a vast documentary regarding the subject. I very much want to see it!

I finally got around to taking pictures of myself in my UNDEAD shirt from the crowdfunding (sadly with no fangs because the damn things have vanished and I cannot find them anywhere for the life of me), but here they are:

In which I discover I've been turned into the undead, which for some reason strikes me as creepier in greyscale.
Clearly I have issues.
Definitely dubious about this whole Being Undead thing.
Getting the hang of it.
Yep. Totally on board.
I already pre-apologized to my sister for being this sort of aunt-to-be. I'm going to mess up her kid. In the best possible way. Go rock your undead, y'all.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

One of the better things I've heard this week

My friend Brynn on gaming: You probably remember from Morrowind that Elder Scrolls games never really seem to end, there's always more to do, so I don't like to play too many of them at once, or I feel like I'm living in some kind of comatose limbo and I'm going to wake up and discover it's the year 4021 and I've evolved into a rodentcycle.

I nearly had to lie down from the sheer correctness of this. I love my friends. I don't have many, but the ones I do have are full of awesome.

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

The Angelarium

My favorite new artist is Peter Mohrbacher, and he has a portion of his work dedicated to what he calls the Angelarium. He basically takes the names of rather obscure angels from the usually-not-considered-official Book of Enoch and creates a picture of how he sees them. Anyway, his art is beautiful, and I love how it's very abstract in its way - not depicting angels as the sort of casually toga-ed normal guys standing around, but as creatures very different from us.

The ones he draws are the angels who fell, the ones who came to Earth and drifted away from the light, later to be judged and systematically destroyed by God. (This is because these are the ones mentioned in the book.) The pictures of them therefore in a lot of cases look as though their original purpose has been twisted against them. Some to me seem just as beautiful as though they'd retained their celestial grace, but others are obviously changed.

This is some of what I found: Some of the fallen angels that are given in 1 Enoch have other names such as Rameel ('morning of God'), who becomes Azazel and is also called Gadriel ('wall of God') in Chapter 68. Another example is that Araqiel ('Earth of God') becomes Aretstikapha ('world of distortion') in Chapter 68.

Please observe:

Dumah, Angel of Dreams
Israfel, Angel of Song
Matariel, Angel of Rain
Leliel, Angel of Night
He's drawn many others, and quite a few are more abstract, but those are some I like a lot. Honestly, I don't care if the Book of Enoch is considered canon or not, so please don't yell your beliefs at me. I just like the idea of many aspects of existence turned into creatures. It's a neat artistic concept, and I think he does a good job.

Some more obviously changed from their original heavenly appearance:

Simikiel, Angel of Vengeance
Asbeel, Angel of Ruin
Zaqiel, Angel of Purity
You get the idea. Here is one I particularly enjoy:

Samshiel, Angel of the Eclipse
Many of the angels he draws have backstories he's created for them, along with his co-conspirators Eli Minaya and James Pianka. This is mostly to do with their not really having such in the Book, instead usually just names as lists or casual mentions. I'm going to actually read the thing and see how they supposedly fit in with the rest of the story.

Eistibus, Angel of Divination
Chazaqiel, Angel of Fog
Suphlatus, Angel of Dust
Here is what Ye Olde Internet has to say about the Book of Enoch:

The Book of Enoch (also 1 Enoch;[1] Ge'ez: መጽሐፈ ሄኖክ mätṣḥäfä henok) is an ancient Jewish religious work, ascribed by tradition to Enoch, the great-grandfather of Noah, although modern scholars estimate the older sections (mainly in the Book of the Watchers) to date from about 300 BC, and the latest part (Book of Parables) probably to the first century BC.[2]
It is not part of the biblical canon as used by Jews, apart from Beta Israel. Most Christian denominations and traditions may accept the Books of Enoch as having some historical or theological interest, but they generally regard the Books of Enoch as non-canonical or non-inspired.[3] It is regarded as canonical by the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church and Eritrean Orthodox Tewahedo Church, but not by any other Christian group.

Those links may or may not work. I can't be bothered to try them all. I slept through my alarm and am now groggily slurping tea in the hope of getting slightly more awake. I'm impressed I managed to find pictures of these angels at all and not just a photo of a gopher or something. Very proud.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

The Angel of Rain

Sometimes there are days when you cry for no reason. 

No, not without reason (though at first it always seems that way), but because of reasons you eventually start suspecting might be lies.

Your brain will whisper nasty little secrets to you, encouraging the burgeoning fear and sorrow to come swelling to the surface and spilling over into visible form.

It will make you afraid. It will tell you that you are worthless. It will tell you that you are ugly, a failure, that no one really loves you or cares what happens to you, no matter what they say.

You can't stop it, short of drugging yourself into insensibility. I've tried that multiple times, with poor results. Every once in a while I get desperate enough to try again. It never works. That doesn't stop me from hoping that maybe, just maybe, it'll work this time.

How do you force your brain to bury those worries down deep once more? You'll always have them - of course you will. They don't ever leave permanently, but they can be shoved down into a huge steamer trunk buried in your heart and locked inside it.

Inevitably, at some point your mind will silently slip down and pick the locks. There isn't much to be done about that except cry for a while, try to exorcise them yet again, then give up and jam them back down as hard as one can.

I was in a car crash last Friday. It was not my fault. That said, I'm afraid to drive. I was also afraid of it after the last time I was hit. Along with that, the car they gave me as a rental is a four-door one, with very nice seats. These very nice seats give me horrible new blind spots. I have no sense of the car's....space? Volume? It is not the same size as my own, and therefore I can't accurately estimate whether I can do something like parallel park. I have no sense at all how big the car is. None. Other than knowing it's obviously not a bus, of course.

No, before anyone asks, I was not injured. I have had my car for 15 years now, and I love it. If I can manage it, I will never get another one. The one downside to this is that when something like a wreck happens that requires me to rent a new-ish vehicle, it's like jumping into Star Trek from Hee Haw (which I have never actually seen, but the name seems appropriate). Nothing makes any sense. 

Apparently you no longer need keys to operate a car. You just have to have some little controller in the general vicinity of the car. I had no idea this was a thing. It is extremely confusing. Do they no longer make manual transmissions? Am I the only person left who likes them? Cars that move forward without me specifically making them do so via clutch and gearshift make me nervous.

Accordingly I am fairly terrified of this car, as well as my general fear of driving that apparently turns up for a while after being hit. It's not the car's fault. It's very nice, I'm sure. But it does freak me out.

That, on top of my brain's recent decision to begin shoveling up thought-swill, makes for just a perfectly lovely mix of bad. I drive, with both hands clenched tight on the wheel, no music on, and avoiding turns, changing lanes, major roads whenever possible. And as I drive, I cry. Or I want to. One of the two.

It's just great.

I want my car back. At least I'll have one thing that's okay again.

I apologize for what seems to be a post full of nothing but complaints. Actually, I guess it IS such. I don't mean it to be, and I'm not trying to dredge up sympathy or protestations of love/caring/whatever. I just wanted to write stuff at 0200, and this is a good medium for that.  I suppose I ought to just illegibly scribble it all in a journal and never show it to a soul. I probably should.

But I'm not.