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Dear Guns:

We know it's not your fault that bigots who can't tell the difference between loud music and actual life-threatening situations get their hands on you. We know it's not your fault that lazy, forgetful POSes who can't be bothered to secure you properly let their kids get their hands on you. We know it's not your fault that those who make and sell you value their money and power so much more than than they value the lives of other people's children. It's not your fault, guns. But do us a favor, will you? Try to go off more often while you are tucked into the waistbands of the fools and bigots before they have the chance to do stupid or hateful things to other people.

So much love,

the rest of us.
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It is my belief that grief is a heavy load to carry. When it first is given to you, you feel as though you cannot bear up under it; taking a single step is so hard, and taking the next, and the next, and the next after that, is overwhelmingly difficult. It's all you can do to keep putting one foot in front of the other. And sometimes, you can't keep your balance, so you drop to the ground. But you get back up, and keep walking. Gradually, over time, it gets better - not because the burden becomes lighter, but because strength increases, making it easier to bear. Each grief is a separate weight. There is no comparing one to another. But after a new burden is loaded on to you, you feel a little more confident. When a new one is piled onto your back, you know that it is ok to stumble beneath it, that it is ok for it to take time to develop the muscles to carry the new burden. The confidence doesn't make the new burden lighter. The grief is not the less because of earlier griefs. But that confidence can make it a bit less utterly terrifying.
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How much does a person's eye color change as one grows up? Is it usual for someone's eyes to change from during adolescence randomly? I remember being told by friends during high school that my eyes were green and not believing them because my mother had said they were grey. Is it more likely that my eyes changed color but mom did not notice because after a while you stop paying attention to those details if you don't expect changes and my friends noticed because they were seeing me with a fresh point of view - or is it more likely that she was doing that thing were she expected me to be just like her and any evidence that I was something other than a clone was to be ignored? (Not exactly gas-lighting, but kind of similar in effect.)
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I just saw "Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows". I have one thing to say about it, but I'm going to put it behind a cut for spoilers' sake.

Read more... )
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Title: Domus Hadeum, or Where You Live

Author Name: MerriWyllow (AKA windsparrow)

Rating: R

Pairing: Jane/Lisbon

Summary: The House of Hades. "Where I live. Every minute of every day. I've
never left. I was hoping to, after I killed Red John. Now I don't know how to
leave. Misery loves company, Lisbon. And I'm going to make you live there,
too." AU. M for words and actions.

Spoilers: 1x01 "Pilot" and 1x09 "Flame Red"

Author's Notes: This is an expansion of chapter four of my fic "Five Red Herrings to Cut Down Mighty Trees"


It's a work in progress, that is mostly written. I'm posting a chapter every three days or so in order to give myself time to really finish it. Chapters 1-3 are up now.


Jan. 4th, 2011 08:31 am
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I am grateful for my health. In spite of aches and pains, and the occasional infection, I am robustly healthy. In the last year, I have taken fewer than 3 days off work due to health issues. That speaks of remarkably good health. My immune system may have a few foibles (I'm looking at you, allergies) but by and large it does an excellent job. I am strong enough to do my job, which includes lifting and sometimes physically restraining adult humans. I am strong enough to shovel snow, which I have done quite a bit recently. I may not be able to tolerate sub-zero temperatures very well, but I can tolerate 110+ heat reasonably well (not comfortably by any means, but vastly more functionally than the cold).

I am thankful for all the wonderful foods I can eat, that not everyone can. Wide varieties of vegetables, fruits, nuts, grains, and protein sources. I am thankful that I love eating vegetables - I bet that is part of how I am able to be as healthy as I am. I am thankful that I live two blocks from the local farmers' market and boy, am I looking forward to that season, so I can partake of gorgeous fresh fruits and vegetables as well as treats such as homemade jam, bread, and jerky. I am thankful for being able to enjoy dark chocolate (well, any kind of chocolate, really, but dark is a favorite plus it is good for us).

I am thankful that my body is a warm snuggly place for my wonderful, purring Harvey to rest.

I am thankful that I can walk a couple of miles at a shot.

I am thankful that taking vitamin D makes a lot of aches and pains go away. Thank you, Daniel, for suggesting it.
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When I was growing up, it looked so much like we were going to lose the Bald Eagle to human stupidity. When I was nine years old, there were only four breeding pairs in Ohio, where I was born and raised. I knew there were people working hard to hold this species back from extinction. I knew they were having some success. But I never dreamed I would see any for myself. So it has been really cool to live here in Minnesota. Twice while driving to work, I have seen a bald eagle in flight. Yesterday we went to the National Eagle Center in Wabasha, MN. This place is amazing. It is located along Lake Pepin, which is essentially the Mississippi River choked off at one end of a valley by the silt brought in by the Chippewa River. The area is home to 40 breeding pairs of Bald Eagles. But it is also a stop along migration routes for others as well as a popular wintering destination for eagles from the far north due to the swift flowing waters which do not freeze over. The Center itself is home to four Bald Eagles, and one Golden Eagle. These eagles have been injured in various ways, and would not be able to survive on their own in the wild. They are still amazing creatures. And they are not kept behind glass, but rather tethered, so that visitors can get within a few feet of them, while volunteers sit with the eagles, attending to their needs and answering questions from the visitors. This is all stuff you can get from looking at the website. What you won't get from the website, and what I am finding it hard to describe is how overwhelming, how wonderful, how superlative an experience it is to be in the same room with them, to find that there were 164 breeding pairs in Ohio in 2008. In Minnesota that same year there were 1,312 - that's two and a half times more than the 487 in the entire Lower 48 back in 1963. We humans, we Americans, we've done some pretty crappy things over the years, by this is one thing we got right. Realizing that, together with the amazement from being so close to some of these animals overwhelmed me so much that I wept. Got all snuffly and whatnot, had to step outside for a while.

We also stopped at an orchard which had MacIntosh apples that tasted exactly like the ones on the tree in the backyard of the house I grew up in. Daniel has always been underwhelmed by MacIntosh apples (though a big fan of the computers), but even he said these were wonderful. Soil conditions, I guess. I long ago swore off buying them in stores, because they were always so bland and sad and bleh. Last year I found some at a local orchard which has some fabulous apples of other varieties, including my new favorite, Zestar; but, even those Macs were only okay. So we have really been enjoying the ones we just bought, as well as the tang of nostalgia.

Another place we made time for was the Laura Ingalls Wilder birthplace wayside. There is an accurate replica of the house the family lived there. It is remarkably similar to the style of house as depicted in the "Little House on the Prairie" show, only smaller in scale. And the loft where Laura and Mary slept did not have so much as a railing. There was a family with small children there at the same time. Someone had lifted the four-ish year old girl up to the loft where she was entertaining all of us with cow imitations.
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Testing, testing....
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