Attention tax

Jul. 22nd, 2017 09:32 pm
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[personal profile] mrissa

Originally published at Novel Gazing Redux. You can comment here or there.

One of the things that has been making me furious about sexual harassment lately–secondary to all the other things that make me furious about it–is the attention tax it imposes on women. The time spent figuring out whether there’s enough evidence for us to be taken seriously this time, whether the people who were in the “surely you misinterpreted” and “that doesn’t mean what it blatantly means” camp last time will finally take us seriously, the time spent recovering from someone shouting in our faces and someone else grabbing our asses, the time sharing stories and pooling information and cleaning up messes and figuring out what to do, what we can do, what we have the power to do. That is time not spent on other things that are frankly a whole hell of a lot more interesting.

When it’s in convention terms, the time spent discussing who did what and what to do and letting the adrenaline settle and coping is time not spent on ideas for books and stories and where to go with them. It is very directly a tax on attention that could and should be going toward work. And it makes me exhausted and resentful, and then I try to corral my attention back to my work, because that is a far, far better place for it to be. I have directly observed that when I am at a con where people are dealing with an ongoing situation of this type, I come back with far, far less in the way of inspired notes for new projects–not just coming away drained instead of energized, but the specifics of what business are we doing here, where is our attention going.

I’m lucky. I know a lot of good men. I know a lot of good straight, white men. One of the benefits of this is that when a straight, white dude is an asshole, I am clear that it is artisanal assholery that he is hand-crafting by choice, not a trait he can’t avoid by his demographics. And a lot of good straight, white men have been stepping up to share the work of dealing with sexual harassment on a community level. I appreciate it. I do. But that is a choice they are making. Statistically, on average, the nonconsensual part, the part where you have to cope with the fallout of being harassed again, the part where it happens several times in a row and then it’s on your mind and you go into the next professional situation having to have a plan for how to cope–that’s a drain on your time and attention that you cannot have back, that other people can help with structurally but not in the moment. They can donate their time but not hand you back yours, not give you back those hours and days of working on the situation and processing and coping. It can happen to men. It does happen to men. And as one woman I know never loses an opportunity to point out, it does not happen to every woman. But statistically, on average, it is an attention tax that falls much, much more heavily on women, for things that we did not ask for and cannot change.

It’s not just sexual harassment. This is not the only attention tax, and I don’t mean to talk as though it is. Racist bullshit and the people who visit it upon people of color? That is, among other worse things, an attention tax on those people of color. Having to cope with accessibility issues and prejudice against the disabled? Attention tax. Homophobia and other forms of anti-queer assholery? Attention tax. Navigating the world while neurodiverse, even in ways that do not feel like a disability internally, among people who are going to be utter jerks to any hint of non-neurotypicality? Attention tax. And while I’ve talked about men and women above, the amount of attention tax that falls on gender-nonconforming and non-binary people gets mind-bogglingly larger the more gender-policing the subculture they’re interacting with gets. One of the fundamental questions is: how much jerkitude are people going to blithely shovel on you for being you and then skip along with their day, and how much will that pull away from the focus you need to do your stuff that you do.

Do I imagine I’m the first to observe this? Hardly. But “show don’t tell” is hardly new advice, either, and writers get blog posts out of that several times a year. What I’m saying to you is: this is affecting the work of people you know and care about. All the time. It doesn’t have to. It is literally all entirely voluntary. The thing I said above about artisanal bullshit: last month I got very tired of people saying “so that’s a thing that happened” when they were describing a choice someone made. So let’s not do that. Let’s not ascribe to fundamental forces things that are actual bad choices people are making.

And also: people who are doing work through all these attention taxes, who are managing to push it aside and fight their way through to focusing on making something awesome: I see you. I appreciate you. I’m sorry it’s like this. I keep hoping that some of the draining work will gain us some ground and it will be long-term less necessary. But in the meantime, thanks for clawing back some of your own in the face of it. It’s so hard, and it matters so much.

(no subject)

Jul. 22nd, 2017 10:02 pm
the_rck: (Default)
[personal profile] the_rck
I want very much to respond to comments on some fics that are still anonymous. I could respond anonymously, but reveals are tomorrow, and I'd rather respond as myself. I've gotten recipient comments on four of the five stories, and the fifth person hasn't responded to any of the three stories they got but appears to have been prompt about responding to past gifts, so I'm assuming some sort of offline life thing has happened.

We're on our way home from Scott's parents' place now. If we weren't, I'd start the next story with a due date.

Wave, Listen to Me!

Jul. 22nd, 2017 07:56 pm
informationgeek: (Default)
[personal profile] informationgeek posting in [community profile] scans_daily
wavelistentome0100

And now for something completely different. A digital-only title from Kodansha Comics, Wave, Listen to Me!, from the creator of Blade of the Immortal. Enjoy, especially if you wish to see something not superhero related or fantasy-based. Just something human.

The first chapter is available to read for free, thus the amount of pages below. Feel free to check them out on the site here though.


Read more... )

Sigh.

Jul. 22nd, 2017 09:46 pm
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[personal profile] malkingrey
The phone company guy finally showed up at 7:30, and said he'd tested the outside connections and the problem was inside the house.

We paid last December for a guy to come check inside the house when the phone line was acting wonky, and all he could come up with was recommending that we replace the jack and the splitter and the rest of the connecting stuff. Which we got the material to do, and then the problem went away on its own before Himself got around to it, so the material stayed in the bag we brought it home from the store in for the last six months. Then we had this latest round of dead phone line and yo-yo internet, and Himself finally did all the replacing, but it did no good.

If this keeps up, I'm giving serious thought to going to fiber-optic for internet and cell phone service for the telephone, and the hell with a landline.

What if for 2018

Jul. 22nd, 2017 08:53 pm
james_davis_nicoll: (Default)
[personal profile] james_davis_nicoll
My Friday reviews rotated between four long running series? Say, Vorkosigan, Kitty and two others?

Grumble.

Jul. 22nd, 2017 04:44 pm
malkingrey: ((default))
[personal profile] malkingrey
The phone company said that the repair guy would come around today before 6PM to check the line from the street to the house (yes, the one that gets blown loose, if not down, in just the right conditions of heavy wind and rain/snow.) It is now 4:44, so they aren't liars yet.

I'm not holding my breath, though. And if he hasn't shown up by 6:30, I'm calling them again to complain.

RIVERDALE SEASON 2 TEASER!!!!!!!!

Jul. 22nd, 2017 04:14 pm
orangerful: (rockstar)
[personal profile] orangerful
To avoid any more deep thoughts today, I spent any downtime at work browsing the #SDCC2017 and #RIVERDALESDCC tag on Twitter and THIS HAPPENED!!!!!!!

SPOILERS FOR SEASON 1 OF RIVERDALE, DO NOT WATCH IF YOU HAVE NOT SEEN IT ALL YET!!!!!!!!

LINKING SO THAT THE "still image" doesn't spoil anyone because I don't trust YouTube to make the right decision

...I need to make some Riverdale icons...
lucean: (Default)
[personal profile] lucean posting in [community profile] scans_daily
As expected, the new Justice League trailer dropped at Comic Con and I absolutely loved it, especially towards the end when we get a better glimpse of the action. At the moment, I think it feels like a really good blend of Whedon's kind of dialogue based apporach and Snyder's epic action which should be insane to watch. And it really seems like something you need to see on the big screen, which is a plus.

The trailer is below and while it does, quite justifyibly, have an initial heavy focus on Wonder Woman, I thought it had a couple of really promising glimpses of Aquaman, Cyborg and Flash in action. Best of all, they all feel epic in what they can do. So here's hoping this movie manages to catch the League of Gods feeling that made JLA so unique.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DblEwHkde8U

(no subject)

Jul. 22nd, 2017 01:25 pm
the_rck: (Default)
[personal profile] the_rck
I managed to finish the [community profile] pod_together fic last night about 11:00. I haven't posted it yet because it lacks a title. I'm also still hoping to hear back from my partner in the undertaking, but we're not in compatible time zones, so it's difficult.

I also need a tag that I can use for when a character talks to an externalized manifestation of their own psyche in order to hash out a problem. There must be one, right? Any suggestions?

I woke with a migraine this morning. I think it's a multi-factor thing. I slept less last night than I wanted to because Scott took forever (two hours!) getting ready for bed after I was ready to sleep. Then, when he came to bed, he kept doing stuff with his laptop until I asked him why he was still up and still keeping me up. I had some coughing, so I didn't dare use the c-PAP. I was stressed about the story and about the family gathering this afternoon (BIL's birthday), and a number of other things. There's also some indication that my body may be preparing for a period (though I'm skeptical because been spotting off and on since late June. If I didn't already have a gynecology appointment on the 9th, I'd probably have called already to see about setting one up).

The lack of sleep and stress are making me ache. I'm wearing thumb splints today because I can't do what I need to otherwise. I have to wrap the present for our BIL some time in the next half hour (Scott's trying to repair the dryer). We only have Christmas wrapping paper.

What I really want to do is to lie down and nap. There just isn't time.
sartorias: Mei Changs (MC)
[personal profile] sartorias
In this next arc, we see the powerful Marquis Xie moving toward securing more power through the oblivious Crown Prince. But he’s not merely the usual rug-chewing bad guy, which makes him so much more interesting. And also unpredictable.

Meanwhile, we are getting to know Xia Dong, Princess Nihuang’s bestie, who still refuses to speak to Prince Jing. She is loyal and honest and a fierce warrior. (And she has a very, very bumpy ride ahead of her.)

Finally, Princess Nihuang is confused and intrigued by this reclusive scholar who has the power to send military aid to a province on the other side of the continent, and yet who refuses to set foot in a falling-down house . . . and we see the building emotional cost to MC when spending more time with the princess and with Jing.

The next few eps are the midpoint of act one, and reach a climax I thought really intense on the first watch. I couldn’t believe that the intensity was going to scale upward exponentially—but it does. And by intensity I don’t mean climbing body counts, which enervate me fast. I mean real, personal stakes. Emotional cost. Political layers with real cost. So much intensity, so much beauty.
Read more... )

my love i am the speed of sound

Jul. 22nd, 2017 12:42 pm
musesfool: Peggy Carter is gunning for you (your heart is a weapon)
[personal profile] musesfool
L and I made a spur of the moment decision to see Dunkirk last night - well, as spur-of-the-moment as you can with purchasing reserved seats ahead of time *snerk* - and I have mixed feelings about it. It is beautifully shot and I could watch Tom Hardy spoiler ) all day, but mostly I feel like it took an amazing real life story and didn't deliver on the emotional impact of it. spoilers )

I liked that it was nearly dialogue free (and I didn't mind that I couldn't understand half the dialogue that there was), but I felt that the structure was overly fiddly and unnecessary and it kept me from full immersion (um, pun not intended?) emotionally. Also the music was too loud and there was too much of it.

It also suffers a little from Band of Brothers syndrome in that I couldn't tell the two young dudes apart for most of the story. Once they're both wet so you can't tell which one has curly hair and which one has straight hair, I couldn't tell them apart, and I honestly didn't care that much about them beyond the generic - I mean, I didn't want any of those guys to die, and I felt there was nothing specific about those two to make me care more. spoilers ) (Otoh, casting Harry Styles - who was good, I thought - was a smart move, because I always recognized him, even half-drowned.)

Mark Rylance and Kenneth Branagh (and James D'Arcy!) were great, as was Tom Hardy. I mean, I would have watched a whole movie where Tom Hardy spoiler ) But overall, it's a B to B+ kind of movie for me. I wouldn't see it again.

If you do see it, I can say it was definitely worth seeing in 70mm, if you have that option. Otoh, if you have a fear of drowning, I don't recommend it for you.

Both L and I had similar mixed feelings. We discussed it on the walk to the bus stop, and my god, I have never sweated as much as I sweated yesterday - it was not a day for walking but I did a lot of it. I was so overheated that I never once felt cold in the movie theater despite being sleeveless, which has never ever happened to me before.

Before the movie we were going to meet at a Mexican place that looked good, but it was so jam packed with people, we ended up at the Cafe Tallulah, where the cheeseburger is fantastic, but again, on a day as hot as yesterday, wtf were the front windows all doing open, so you couldn't feel the air conditioning hardly at all? I never sweated so much in my life while doing nothing.

***

Touristifying in Frankfurt

Jul. 22nd, 2017 05:35 pm
oursin: Brush the Wandering Hedgehog by the fire (Default)
[personal profile] oursin

Having a weekend with partner in Frankfurt.

Hotel perhaps overdoing the stylish minimalism: why does this always mean, nowhere to put stuff in the bathroom? However, good marks for the breakfast buffet.

On matters of modern design, am I the only person who finds themself waving their hands at a tap that turns on some other way, and vice versa?

Today to the Stadel- art gallery, very good stuff and lots of it. Among works observed, one C16th courtesan as Flora, with obligatory symbolickal bubbie displayed.

Also to the Arts and Crafts Museum, which has gone full-on poncey and eschews labeling in favour of composing curatorial 'constellations'. Though I could have spent more time with the shiny pillow-like balloons that one was permitted even exhorted to touch. (Sometimes I am shallow and frivolous.)

Some general flaneurserie, looking into churches, etc.

orangerful: (Default)
[personal profile] orangerful
So, I'm about halfway through Hillybilly Elegy by J.D. Vance which is all about issues in rural America and the culture that exists there. It became a bestseller after Trump was elected president because it was implied that these were the people that voted for him so everyone is reading the book in the hopes of making sense of it all.

I saw this article in the Washington Post about rural Americans and disabilities and unemployment and it echoed a lot of the issues that Vance talks about in his book. And it all just blows my mind and I struggle to find any way we can all understand each other. This culture, the entire way the families function, it just is so alien to how I grew up, how I was raised, the values instilled in me.

And, the irony being that you could read about some of these situations they go through - the broken homes, the scraping by etc. and if you saw it out of context, you might think it has to do with inner city living and "minority" groups. And this is probably what makes the divide worse because most of us fight for equality for different groups, trying to figure out how to fix a broken system, but these rural poor white groups end up getting ignored because, technically, they are part of the majority?

I dunno, it is all so hard to even grasp because that world is just so alien to me having grown up in middle class suburbs. And I'm sure that is a huge part of America's problem right now because there is no way to have a dialogue that makes any sense because the culture of both sides is so different.

I had to return the book without finishing it, I'm back on the waitlist (only 100 people ahead of me blurgh!) but I wonder what each person is getting out of this story. Living in Maryland probably gives a unique perspective too since it has a large transient population due to military and government contractor jobs, but at the same time there are people who have always been here. And Virginia and Pennsylvania aren't that far, so I'm sure people who grew up in that society have migrated across the states to start anew like Vance did.

Has anyone read the book? Thoughts? feelings? reactions? Obviously his life story isn't the ONLY story of someone growing up there, but the news coverage of the unemployment issues and opiod crisis are making it seem like perhaps his story is more average than we would ever want to believe.

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