Twitter Weekly Updates for 2011-03-27

Twitter Weekly Updates for 2011-03-20

  • @pledgemistress I may have a dongle for you. in reply to pledgemistress #
  • My umbrella-tree plant is dying. I do not know how to love it better, and I'm sad. Does anyone know how to nurse and umbrella-tree plant? #
  • Today is one of those tooth-gnashing sort of days when it becomes apparent that I've taken on work as a professional cat-herder. Here kitty. #
  • C'mere y'goddamn useless feline … #
  • And then Ziggy Stardust comes on in my magical cafe, and I remember that I come here because of the kids and so I can't hate 'em. #Livehappy #
  • I do not remember the last time I had a day so honestly full of work. I am doing a disservice to my work cafe, being too busy to get food! #
  • OH. It's the Ides. THAT's why all my various projects colluded to jump me on my way to the forum today. Nice to know there's a reason! #
  • The things said to me/return in a rush, I have/ flashbacks of that love #
  • @bewareleopard Love love love love love love love love love love love love love love love love love love love love love love love love love. in reply to bewareleopard #
  • @mrsexsmith Yeah, but it wasn't a big thang. Just changing my template options. in reply to mrsexsmith #
  • @this_isbollocks How could anybody accuse you of not being a "real gay"? I wasn't even in the room to snog! in reply to this_isbollocks #
  • @mrsexsmith Shoot me an email or DM, and I'll putcha in touch with someone who does. I'm probably a newer WP hacker than you, my friend. in reply to mrsexsmith #
  • OH at the Cafe – child: "Is this edible?" adult: "yeah, it's a cucumber!" child: "yeah, but is this *really* edible?" #
  • @this_isbollocks Why does Guinness have your Email? in reply to this_isbollocks #
  • @this_isbollocks Well, fair nuff. in reply to this_isbollocks #
  • @bewareleopard If I could get a TARDIS, I would give it to you. True story. in reply to bewareleopard #
  • No, Wait, @KinkForAll! #KFAPVD2 Starts at 10:20 AM, not PM. Bright and early, delicious friends! #
  • @johntunger Dude, she's on to you … (cc @renewabelle) in reply to renewabelle #
  • Spending the day at #kfapvd2 If you don't care, ignore my tweets. But you should totally care! #
  • So #KFAPVD2 is my life, last year. And you know what? It is pretty fucking neat that it has come to visit. Hello, old friends. #
  • @xMech is talking to us about what IS #TMI in varying social contexts. Hooray, #KFAPVD2 #
  • Does being open about your life make you an expert? Maybe not, but it does make you a resource (@xMech, #KFAPVD2 #
  • Sometimes you need to be upfront about what you are, to ensure that the people you're close to love you for just that, no confusion. #KFAPV2 #
  • Yeah #livestreamhugging That's how we show all the LOVE that makes Kink For All so awesome! #KFAPVD2 #
  • Listening to a this talk on #kink and the #liminal I am reminded of #KFANYC1 It's been about a zillion years. Still #inspired #KFAPVD2 #
  • Oh Hey! A #DrWho joke! I like this talk already! #KFAPVD2 @TheProfessorMrM #
  • @writingdirty Where are you we miss you?! in reply to writingdirty #
  • I walk through the world bold and proud most of the time, but when I hear the #sexual #harassment statistics, it's suddenly harder. #KFAPVD2 #
  • The parts that are ok for touching vary vastly according to whose touching you. With some people, the air 2 feet away is too close! #kfapvd2 #
  • OH INTERESTING! Didn't realize how much more intimate back of the hand is from the palm. Crazy stuff, social interaction & bodies. #KFAPVD2 #
  • Considering the privilege of being comfortable and hard to tip off balance. Unexpected touch is such a minor challenge for me. #KFAPVD2 #
  • You should totally check out the #kfapvd2 chat. It's lively and full! (yeah, we appropriated it for the day) #
  • @MajaMajaMaja I think the difference is not touching WITH the back of the hand, but being touched ON the back of the hand … (#kfapvd2) in reply to MajaMajaMaja #
  • @MajaMajaMaja Touching WITH back of the hand sends the "I won't grope you" signal. But brushing hand-back versus handshake is odd. #kfapvd2 in reply to MajaMajaMaja #
  • @FierceKitty I AM! in reply to FierceKitty #
  • Since when did #set #theory become something I deal with on a regular basis? Thanks, #mathgeeks #KFAPVD2 #
  • We are talking about the sets of definitions of the word #queer and how they overlap each other. #KFAPVD2 #
  • Is @saraeileen preaching to the choir, or is she not? How much do we anticipate her questions? How captive an audience are we? #KFAPVD2 #
  • As we spread the word, consider and move forward, I would say that this discussion of #language and #queerness is needed anyway. #KFAPVD2 #
  • Words have many definitions: Personal, within social context, cultural – how can we bear these all in mind? #KFAPVD2 #
  • Hm. @SaraEileen asks "What do you think I mean when I say I'm queer?" We answer "Any one of twenty different things." #Progress #KFAPVD2 #
  • @xMech That does seem likely. Clever lady! #KFAPVD2 in reply to xMech #
  • "You're probably a lesbian." #KFAPVD2 #
  • What is #CBT Cock & Ball Torture! Cognitive Behavioral Therapy! Computer Based Training! (Overlapping social spheres) #KFAPVD2 #
  • @this_isbollocks Then bring your public privates over to #KFAPVD2 We are friendly geeks! in reply to this_isbollocks #
  • If you're "just a lesbian" or "just a gay man" can you still identify as #queer I think that if you #feel queer, you #are queer. #kfapvd2 #
  • @MajaMajaMaja Sure! People are what they will be. But I'm sure there are some people who are #gay and #queer together. #Kfapvd2 in reply to MajaMajaMaja #
  • Worth noting: @SaraEileen's skirt is one of the most fabulously distractingly gorgeously glittery things I have ever encountered. #KFAPVD2 #
  • The point is we can dow hat we want. We can be what we want. We can be who we are. And let people as questions. #KFAPVD2 #
  • @Siniful What do you think? I would say yes. I think #queer is what you make it, but I'm getting dangerously deconstructionist… #kfapvd2 in reply to Siniful #
  • Watching one of @maymaym's talks cold for the first time in ages. So excited for slides! #Kfapvd2 #
  • Can't tweet, slides to fast. #KFAPVD2 #
  • What do pre-Stonewall queer riots have to do with fetlife? I don't know. We'll find out. #KFAPVD2 @maymaym #
  • What is the difference between set-specific sanctuary and segregation? It can be hard to tell. #KFAPVD2 @maymaym #
  • Thanks to the Internet, no one will ever be the Only Gay Eskimo ever again. #KFAPVD2 #
  • It's not safe to be behind a wall unless you know everybody else who's behind that wall with you. #KFAPVD @maymaym #
  • As ever, @maymaym sparks brilliant and intense discussion. What else would a guy like him inspire? #kfapvd2 #
  • Nothing worse than being pulled back to #impulse when you were about about to hit #warp3 #kfapvd @maymaym #
  • OH MY GOD DAR QUOTE LOVE LOVE LOVE #kfapvd @maymaym #
  • @writingdirty See @maymaym, saying to the world that he is "kind of an ass." It's true – he speaks in this way. His points stand. #kfapvd2 in reply to writingdirty #
  • Ra-ra Internet Nonviolence! #kfapvd2 #
  • How did that guy know about the warts? #kfapvd2 #
  • Let's all have a round of applause for Tor, the thinking person's privacy engine. #kfapvd2 @pledgemistress #
  • Heh. @Pledgemistress says: "Do as I say, not as I do" when it comes to Internet Privacy. #kfapvd2 #
  • Sad, but true – the best way to keep your racy pictures safe is to destroy 'em. I lost a lot of skin in my last cleanliness purge. #kfapvd2 #
  • Be aware of who has access to your files, when and through what means. It may be more people more often than you think. #kfapvd2 #
  • Quoth @pledgemistress: "I'm a dirty person." OH! That explains so much! #kfapvd2 #
  • Seriously, it's amazing how much @maymaym knows about how t'stay private on the Internet. It's like he's been there his whole life! #kfapvd2 #
  • And the audience chimes in! Everybody has their own piece of information about Internet safety. Pity we don't all have 'em all. #kfapvd2 #
  • Risk Aware Consensual Internet Use? #kfapvd2 #
  • Learning a lot about the things that I miss as @maymaym runs a breakout session on wikileaks, Bradley Manning, and censorship. #kfapvd2 #
  • What makes a crime a crime? Possibly the fact that someone was prosecuted for it. #kfapvd2 @maymaym #bradleymanning #wikileaks #
  • Fair point – Due process really just disappears when "national security" appears. I think the constitution still applies. #kfapvd2 @maymaym #
  • @maymaym Thanks! Those are worth looking into – any way of differentiating what they are easily? Or is it a look-and-find-out situation? in reply to maymaym #
  • @maymaym Yeah, I meant a what's-what within the tweet. I think character limit defeats that goal. in reply to maymaym #
  • @katebornstein I never heard anything like that. Sounds sort of fic-y to me. in reply to katebornstein #
  • @Siniful You guys fill me with so much joy and hope and love. Thank you for sharing! (cc @DDog, @nikolasco) in reply to Siniful #
  • @katebornstein It doesn't surprise me one bit to discover you're secretly a #Timelord You certainly avert disasters and spread joy to folk! in reply to katebornstein #

Twitter Weekly Updates for 2011-03-13

  • A few months ago it all felt like magic. Now that I do it so often, it just feels like my life. But I'm not dumb. I know my life is magic. #
  • Praise god. (sigh) It's gonna bite me. -JHL #
  • @johntunger I miss the 'hawk. I know I'm outvoted, but y'know – just saying. in reply to johntunger #
  • @this_isbollocks Glad! Cuz we missed you at the Avery. in reply to this_isbollocks #
  • Oh I guess it's international women's day. Also fat tuesday. Unsure what to make of this coincidence. Do I get a piroshki for being a lady? #
  • Oh, Three Sisters. How your music brings the nostalgia crashing down. New York, 14 years old … I too am feeling like a criminal. #
  • @writingdirty If that is so you really need to get a different lube. in reply to writingdirty #
  • #Patrick #Rothfus. (!!!) If you know, you know. If not, you might want to look into it. Or not. But for those who get it – !!! #
  • @maxgladstone Yes. Charlie Sheen. in reply to maxgladstone #
  • How many animals are also verbs? Squirrel, rabbit, dog, horse… hmm. #
  • @LookAtThatPunim "He's been dogging me for ages"? And… ok. Maybe not Rabbit. But definitely Ferret! in reply to LookAtThatPunim #
  • @Siniful How does one spider? or eagle for that matter? Sentences pls! in reply to Siniful #
  • @MajaMajaMaja @Im_Jon @siniful And not to be forgotten: Buffalo! Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo in reply to MajaMajaMaja #
  • @Siniful Yeah well of course Peter Parker can spider. Can you? in reply to Siniful #
  • Oh. My god. "War Pigs"? Really? This cafe is determined to play every song that was ever a touchstone for me, ever ever in life. Holy heck. #
  • @bookcat How much do I love that that meets notability guidelines. This is important, dammit! in reply to bookcat #
  • OH MY GOD BODIES. Just, everybody has one and they need to figure out how to make it work with the world. And the world is SO DUMB about it. #
  • Stop! Don't get closer/ to that flame, it will burn you/ and I won't get to. #
  • @dandelionjar To make you get that funny look on your face? in reply to dandelionjar #
  • Oh. "The Wrong Way." Maybe the reason I get a little frazzled when I work at the cafe is that it PLAYS MY CHILDHOOD ON THE RADIO. goddamn. #
  • Ok. Let's go to a Ska show, guys. Let's just do it. And skank, for reals, like there is No. Tomorrow. #
  • Every once in a while I *still* get a rush of pride when I notice how quickly my fingers dance over the keyboard. #skills #
  • @Danjite You miss it too? in reply to Danjite #

Living with Mystery

How did I come to share my home
with a carnivorous plant?

I’m not the sort to go out and buy a venus fly trap
just so I can show it off to my friends.
I do not feel more witchy or impressive because of it.

(To be certain, I did show it off, when it arrived.
After all, it’s a plant that eats things.)

There is a sort of a story to how it wound up coming home with me,
but the gist of it is that,
like most unexpected objects in one’s home, it was a gift.
I did not know much about it, at the time.

For instance, I did not know – though I suspected –
That venus fly traps are notoriously hard to cultivate.
I also did not know – though I should have suspected –
that they have flowers.

In the Spring long stalks grow up from
the nest of tiny green mouths
and are crested with white flowers
appallingly sweet
and quite lovely.

I thought I knew what surprises
the venus fly trap had to offer.
I thought perhaps it would help get rid of the minute, slow-flying insects
that appear whenever I am too slow eating my fruit.

It turns out they don’t like flying insects much.
If I’m lucky it will eat up my ants when Summer comes,
but in the meantime most of its little maws are closed and brown.

It takes energy to make a flower.

Twitter Weekly Updates for 2011-03-06

  • Client: "So I watched a nerdy video. I know you're surprised." #
  • Oh god, Yoshimi. Oh, senior year, early morning, on my way to Humanities. Oh, the memories make my chest hurt. Ow ow ow. #
  • Rare evening alone at home; dishes, tidy, write, write, write, re-read name of the wind. Maybe cook. Hang out with the plants. #
  • A few weeks I wrote a post about math. Last night, I wrote a better one. #
  • Well, it's just around 2:00 pm on a Thursday. Of *course* both my downstairs neighbors are playing dance music so loud it makes my apt move! #
  • @maxgladstone Pretty much as good as ever in reply to maxgladstone #
  • @maxgladstone I opted to go for it. Want things fresh you know. in reply to maxgladstone #
  • @UncleBroseph My adoration knows no bounds. in reply to UncleBroseph #
  • Lady sits alone with a book & tea at cafe. Gets a call, says "Speaking…Thank you." Leaves. Getting her tire fixed next door? Thanks, PVD. #
  • @this_isbollocks Growing boy? in reply to this_isbollocks #
  • I have 2things to do this morning. Been waiting on both of them for an hour and a half. They both arrived right now, to be done immediately. #
  • Today is making threatening gestures towards being a No Good, Very Bad day. #
  • Sometimes a piano sounds like a piano, and sometimes it sounds like oddly timed tappings. Weighted keys touch down but the music is trapped. #
  • Who's on twitter RIGHT NOW and wants to advise me how to get somebody who's sleepy to be wakeful for the sexins? @siniful I'm looking at you #
  • @Siniful Ah but you see I am awake. Its certain other folk who're sleepy. Wakefulness is being worked upon. Just lookin' for tips n' tricks. in reply to Siniful #
  • @Siniful That's been counted out. I think writing a piano piece is working out in the interim. Art-for-wake-for-sex-for-win! in reply to Siniful #
  • @UncleBroseph Your wisdom knows no bounds. in reply to UncleBroseph #
  • @MollyRen @siniful @unclebroseph Yeah, things get a little complex in these parts. When it comes to wakefulness, art, and sex. in reply to MollyRen #
  • Working on a saturday, but here between a curious little girl and a hilarious older man. Cafe and conversation makes it spin right by. #
  • @erosjoy Well thank you! I'm glad you enjoy it! in reply to erosjoy #
  • To those who are wondering, the answer to last night's question was: Green tea, the piano, 2 propane torches, 2 candles and some wood. #
  • @this_isbollocks Right? It was, in fact, all his idea. Clever madmen, those fellows I take to bed. in reply to this_isbollocks #

Apologizing to March

I’m sorry, March.
I’m sorry I tried to drive on your roads,
They must ache so, scarred and pitted by those nasty older siblings of yours

I’m sorry, March
I’m sorry to expect so much of you
Always poking into corners, checking out the grass
Wondering if you brought me a present
Like maybe Spring
For instance

It isn’t fair to you
My getting my hopes so high
It’s not your fault that you’re a mutt
A halfbreed
One foot inside of Winter
One foot out

So, I apologize.
You just keep on being March
I will do my best not to ask
“Are we there yet?”

Math, Revisited

A few weeks ago I wrote a post about math, my struggles with it, and my propensity for hanging out with people who are really good at it. I seemed to proclaim that my wishy-washy, right-brained, listening-to-feelings skills were what I had going for me instead of technical skills like, say, creating intricate models of complex functions. Or playing an instrument. Or skating backwards.

Then I talked to some folks and I thought about stuff and I came to some different conclusions. The basics are: This is not about being bad at math. It’s about becoming a generalist rather than choosing to focus on a specific passion, about my continued struggle to get comfy with gender, and my frustration with a way in which I feel that public education let me down, math-wise.

The truth is I am what I set out to be. I like poking my nose into things. I have always gone for breadth of knowledge over depth. I’m curious, but a little flighty. I move about. And that’s true and I sort of like and appreciate it in myself – it’s nice to be able to chat with a lot of different people on a lot of different subjects, at least enough to ask smart questions. But I do envy people their masteries; things they’ve poured ten thousand hours and more into. My friend the novelist, my friend the composer, my friend the machinist, my friends the scientists and mathematicians.

Subpoint to this: it’s not like there’s nothing I can do to help it. I am not incapable of acquiring these skills. I just need to, you know – do it. And when I care, I do. It has been pointed out to me that I’m a rather decent cook.

Secondary subpoint: I’m also doing darned well making the generalist thing work for me. I’ve created a spot for myself in the world that allows me to use a whole variety of skills, including the ability to quickly pick up a wide range of stuff.

Still, in this way, my feelings have to do with specialization-envy, not math at all.

But math was certainly a part of it; and there my feeling is that public education done me wrong. When I was in elementary school, I loved science. I loved looking at things and finding out about things and asking questions. When science-fair time came I didn’t do a report with a fancy display board, or choose to demonstrate a known effect; I did an experiment (seeing what sort of material burned fastest under a magnifying glass). I found out something new. It was great.

Grown-ups would tell me that science and math would go together one day, but I just refused to believe them. Science was all about discovery, math was all about sums. Frequently we played competitive math games, racing to the end of problems on the board.

I hated those games.

If anybody had shown me, really taken the time and shown me, why math is a science, when I was young, maybe I wouldn’t have set my teeth against it so early. I might have believed it, and maybe I would have been a scientist.

And I guess I’d sort of like to be a scientist. I never set out that way, so there’s no reason for me to have ended up there. It’s just a little odd to be such a staunch supporter of women in maths and sciences, and to be myself a writer of poems and reader of history and cooker of meals. Struggling with math reminds me of the ways in which I struggle with gender roles and presentations, and with the ways in which the person I am overlaps and overruns the person that I hope to be.

I don’t know if mathematicians should be teaching math to high school students. Accountancy-style math skills are necessary to work your way though the world; we need to learn them sometime. But I do think that it might be a good idea to have mathematicians teach math to elementary students, even middle school students. Get them while they’re young. Show them how cool the universe can be. Pair up with the physics department. Start poaching the cool, weird kids away from art and poetry and drama. Blow something up. Graph it.

And for christ’s sake, “Donald in Mathmagic Land” should be required viewing, at least once every other school year.

Of that there should be no question.