cimorene: A black-and-white vintage photograph of 1920s singer Helen Kane in profile, with a dubious, side-eye expression (reading)
[personal profile] mirabella is so, so right about ebook piracy.

Now, you could make the point that every one of those thousand paperbacks has (presumably) already been bought once, and therefore represents a positive cash flow to the author at some point in the past; while the pirated e-books, by definition, are a commodity that has not resulted in cash flow, ever. This is, strictly speaking, true. But going from Point A - people are getting something for free that they really shouldn't be - to Point B - and therefore the author is being directly harmed by lost sales due to piracy - is like me saying the reason I'm not rich today is that everyone on Earth didn't send me twenty bucks for my birthday every year like my grandmother did. Worse, it's like me making a budget where I spend like every person on Earth is a potential source of twenty bucks every January 24th and then being surprised and pissed off when I come up short.
cimorene: A black-and-white vintage photograph of 1920s singer Helen Kane in profile, with a dubious, side-eye expression (:O)
↵ The highlight of my month was finding a cream chartreuse nailpolish. (I've been dying for some ever since I saw the image in my icon, which is from the 2008 Lavazza Espresso calendar, so.)

↵ Dammit, that is the second time I have dreamt about Adam Lambert. I don't understand why I'd have multiple dreams where the whole point of his presence is to perform at a concert, but I don't get to dream about the concert even though I want to see it both in the dream and reality, and even though I have actually seen him perform a concert in real life. >:[!!! I'm being tormented by my own subconscious with withheld Adam Lambert concerts! WHY?

This very much makes me want to see a particular production of a show live, which has never happened to me before at all (at least not with a show that was still in the future. I would really have liked to have seen the lesbian version of Hamlet that someone-or-other famously put on one time). But all-male gay Swan Lake with a closeted prince? *_* But come on, nobody can afford to go to New York! At least go on tour or something! :|

[personal profile] waxjism wistfully mentioned trying to sign up to co-write for Lambliff Big Bang together, under the theory that it might make our mutual writer's block easier to overcome. We have wildly different levels of investment in Adam Lambert fandom, but surprisingly similar feelings about fic about him. The problem is we each had one tiny kernel of an idea and couldn't imagine working on the other's. She was talked into signing up anyway with her idea, and I had to abandon the idea because without the excuse & motivation of writing with her (doing something as a favor to one's wife is always virtuous, sort of like writing for Yuletide. I wish all year was just a series of Yuletide-like multifandom challenges), I couldn't see writing a story about two white guys right now, even if one of them is an out gay dude. But now, after that 5 seconds of pitifully stunted hope, I'm feeling disproportionately disappointed.

↵ Jeans that fit. I know it's a universal problem, but I kind of go through stages with being more-or-less satisfied, versus stages (like now) when I kind of don't want to wear any pants because none of them fit quite right. I put on my cords for the first time in ≈1yr and experienced a brief revelation followed by a period of anger: "Why can't all pants fit like this?!" Then I remembered the reason they fit like that is that I redid the outer leg seam from ankle to hip pocket. I can't do this with all my jeans because a) denim is heavy and b) it only works if the waistband and rise are good & only the leg/hip is loose. It's also very annoying that [personal profile] waxjism and I can almost always borrow each other's shoes and even wear the same size of Converse but I can't wear her 8-hole Dr Martens even for the amount of time it takes to walk the dog without my poor toes being squashed & cramping.

↵ Anxiety, depression. It's as bad as anticipated or slightly worse, given my lack of motivation has spread from preparing what I consider "real meals" to actually eating. A week ago I spent 2 days feeling sort of sick because I almost completely forgot to eat. 6 days until I see a psychiatrist! I am, however, looking forward to having regular scheduled social interaction this winter which may help combat my SAD & hopefully, possibly, also my social anxiety. [personal profile] pierydys and I are planning to go to a weekly Finnish for Beginners course in Rauma (which is something of a commute, ouch. But it's not like I have anything better to do?) and combine it with some kind of crafting day. And [personal profile] morningfine at least has agreed to trying to get together weekly or biweekly this winter to watch things, the way we did when we were going through the Highlander box set. Of course we very much hope that [personal profile] bluesbell and [personal profile] anglepoiselamp will join these gatherings as well.
cimorene: A black-and-white vintage photograph of 1920s singer Helen Kane in profile, with a dubious, side-eye expression (cute)
  • Tea This is the second box of Twinings "Passionfruit Mango & Orange" (lack of commas original to the product packaging) Tea I've bought that turned out to actually consist of lemon-flavored tea in P M & O-printed teabags. I'm bemused rather than upset by this, though. I've devoted a fair number of minutes to pondering exactly what happened in their factory to get this result.

  • Soul-crushing/ shiny devices [personal profile] waxjism has been being forced to learn how to make the N8, our Messiah (since it's the phone that's meant to Save Nokia. Nokia made a huge loss last year, and this year is in the black and has been keeping up but not, as it were, making up for lost ground. And of course, Nokia is the single biggest piece of our GNP. Also the best publicized). She's not enjoying it. She wishes it were dead, I think. And on top of all that, it's another fucking Symbian phone.

  • Teaching our elders about Internet memes and traditions When my parents were here, we made them watch Llamas With Hats and read Clean ALL the Things so that they would know what we were talking about (those are our Most Quoted Texts nowadays). We showed This Party Took a Turn for the Douche and The Man Your Man Could Smell Like to my bbsister, but failed to show them to my parents. You'd think everyone knew The Man Your Man Could Smell Like, but when interrogated, my dad revealed he didn't.

  • Career thoughts Last spring I made that very irritated post about dippy hugbertism because I'd been stewing over the excess of same in my classroom assistant courses for a while. By the end of the semester, I was starting to entertain serious fears that I would die of dippyness poisoning before the end of the course. Read more... )
cimorene: A black-and-white vintage photograph of 1920s singer Helen Kane in profile, with a dubious, side-eye expression (holmes)
I think I saw this article half a week ago, but I'm still spitting-nails mad that the Moff thinks society is so wonderfully accepting and non-disapproving nowadays that he has to make it clear that Holmes is DEFINITELY straight, not gay, and in conclusion cousins not attracted to Watson even if he somehow was. Oh really. That's so nice of you. Thank you, Moffat. I'm glad to know that in your view, everybody in this modern world except you (and Benedict Cumberbatch, of course) is completely non-judgmental of the gays!

It's so much worse, somehow, when they are evidently in some way trying. Moffat, for instance, appears from this quote to have given genuine thought to the Holmes/Watson relationship and to the appearance of Gay, and, while earnestly believing that he and society are joyously enlightened, concluded that Holmes and Watson couldn't be that kind of guys. He probably doesn't have the faintest inkling that there's anything wrong (or incongruous) in his protestations. A bit like Whedon's constant, earnest, annoyingly unconscious misogynyfails. (Cumberbatch's remarks, on the other hand, make it instantly clear that he's too clueless to even enter the Gay 101 lecture hall, being instead still lost in the Gender Essentialism Orientation Scavenger Hunt, located outside in the Girlyman Manlygirl Quadrangle.)

I'm still looking forward, though, with some mixed feelings, to the forthcoming episodes1. As Holmes fanfiction it's very good, and Cumberbatch's performance really impressed me, prompting mental comparison to Brett's (not that I'd place them on the same level) without seeming derivative. A time-period AU is one of the most delicate and easily-fucked-up forms of derivative work, in my view: the task of capturing the essence of characterization while stripping away most or all of the verbal expressions the characters use is beyond most fan writers. Time period or characterization usually falters, and in the end most of these AUs stand or fall according to how well they're able to distract you from that weak point. I was expecting something that would be fun enough to cover the inevitable gap. Instead I got some strikingly good characterization. Of course, the crime-solving-related plots were incredibly silly and contained some giant holes, but frankly, if they made sense it would be far less like ACD.

1. My personal 'hate the creator, hate the fanwork' function only cuts off all ability to enjoy when the creator has been an unmitigated asshole in such a way that no possible fanwank could explain their behavior as being in good faith.
cimorene: A black-and-white vintage photograph of 1920s singer Helen Kane in profile, with a dubious, side-eye expression (dangerous)
Yesterday [personal profile] twistedchick linked to Karl Marx's contemporary writings on the American Civil War. Reading an outside perspective - especially, cough, having learned history as a child in Alabama - is a real eye-opener.

Besides being constantly told about "The War Between the States" and "The War of Northern Aggression", we in the South at least are generally told that the Civil War wasn't "really" "about" slavery. Of course, an astute observer grasps that this isn't exactly true. An astute teacher admits that slavery was part of a way of life, attempting to intimate that Northern bigotry against Southern culture of the time (which was totally unfair, because the culture just so happened to include slavery!) was truly at fault. But this reading shows that nothing could be more false than this ridiculous claim.

It's long, but it's gripping reading even though I know how it ends.

The advice of an amicable separation presupposes that the Southern Confederacy, although it assumed the offensive in the Civil War, at least wages it for defensive purposes. It is believed that the issue for the slaveholders' party is merely one of uniting the territories it has hitherto dominated into an autonomous group of states and withdrawing them from the supreme authority of the Union. Nothing could be more false: "The South needs its entire territory. It will and must have it." With this battle-cry the secessionists fell upon Kentucky. By their "entire territory" they understand in the first place all the so-called border states-Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, Kentucky, Tennessee, Missouri and Arkansas. Besides, they lay claim to the entire territory south of the line that runs from the north-west corner of Missouri to the Pacific Ocean. What the slaveholders, therefore, call the South, embraces more than three-quarters of the territory hitherto comprised by the Union. A large part of the territory thus claimed is still in the possession of the Union and would first have to be conquered from it. None of the so-called border states, however, not even those in the possession of the Confederacy, were ever actual slave states. Rather, they constitute the area of the United States in which the system of slavery and the system of free labour exist side by side and contend for mastery, the actual field of battle between South and North, between slavery and freedom. The war of the Southern Confederacy is, therefore, not a war of defence, but a war of conquest, a war of conquest for the spread and perpetuation of slavery.

There's so much here that makes so much sense and that I wasn't taught in school!

  • Even though it's always called "the war of Northern aggression", in fact the South was the literal aggressor in terms of opening fire and of angling for the armed conflict for a long time first.

  • Many of the states now considered to belong to "the South" were so-called border states not given to slavery as a way of life and didn't secede, but were held by the North at the start of war. Basically, the center of evil Confederacy was confined to what we now call the Deep South. Tennessee and Missouri were overwhelmingly Unionist but the rich and powerful intrigued to help the Confederate army invade and conquer. In Kentucky, the governor and ruling class failed repeatedly to get the people to agree to secede in referendum. It declared itself neutral, a declaration the Confederacy formally recognized until it had finished conquering Tennessee, at which point it announced its intention to take Kentucky next. The legislature declared for the Union, captured the governor, and called the people to arms. The secessionists marched on the capitol.

  • The reason Texas is so big: slavery! It should have been admitted to the Union as 5 states by size, but the powerful slaveholders were an even smaller than usual minority, there being a lot of German whites as well, and even joining as just two states would have made one a free state.

I highly recommend reading this for any and all Americans or history buffs.

It is especially striking in light of the recent appalling events in Virginia, with their reprehensible slime-ball governor declaring a Confederate history month.

Virginia now forms the great cantonment where the main army of secession and the main army of the Union confront each other. In the north-west highlands of Virginia the number of slaves is 15,000, whilst the twenty times as large free population consists mostly of free farmers. The eastern lowlands of Virginia, on the other hand, count well-nigh half a million slaves. Raising Negroes and the sale of the Negroes to the Southern states form the principal source of income of these lowlands. As soon as the ringleaders of the lowlands had carried through the secession ordinance by intrigues in the state legislature at Richmond and had in all haste opened the gates of Virginia to the Southern army, north-west Virginia seceded from the secession, formed a new state, and under the banner of the Union now defends its territory arms in hand against the Southern invaders.
cimorene: A black-and-white vintage photograph of 1920s singer Helen Kane in profile, with a dubious, side-eye expression (i kind of dig this)
I was thinking the other day about how I have pared down the uses to which I subject this, my main blog! When I was 19 or 20, sometimes I'd make up to 17 posts a day. I used to post to livejournal:

★ Links to stories I really liked as I read them; today I post these to cimness via bookmarklet as I go.
Before Delicious, I kept an html file open at all times in which I put other recs in the order I read them, writing them up as I went, and every month or so I'd sort them by fandom and upload the new ones to the frontpage of my recs site, then go through and individually add them to the alphabetized fandom pages. Delicious has made my life a lot better.

★ Amusing quotes from badfic as I read it; today I save these and post them in daily batches of five.

★ Links to political & interesting news items, and blog posts from other sites; today I post these to Twittercimness as I go (though today there are more of them, since I didn't follow Cake Wrecks, FailBlog, I Can Has Cheezburger, or the "Blog" of "Unnecessary" Quotation Marks in 2002).

★ Beautiful images I stumbled across; today I post these to cimness (along with lots, lots more images).

★ Quotes from whatever book I was reading that I particularly loved; today I post these to cimness.

★ Random thoughts as they crossed my mind; today I post these to Twittercimness, and when I used to, even as a teenie, occasionally feel constrained not to post every thought, that's actually the whole point of Twitter, which is nice.

In fact, of all the things I used to post, the only ones that remain are

★ Rants and essays and thoughts about fandom, and

★ Diary-like recollections from my life.

Now I also post organized sets of plebefic headers and shoes regularly, but I didn't start those until later.

In conclusion: ten years have brought wondrous advances to the world of blogging technology! Almost all of these acts of posting are a lot easier now than they were then, too. The only thing that isn't is posting to Dreamwidth, because I don't have an awesome Linux client for it to compare with Semagic back in the day (though I saw someone posting about a new one recently, I didn't feel up to investigating it).
cimorene: A black-and-white vintage photograph of 1920s singer Helen Kane in profile, with a dubious, side-eye expression (fierce)


[personal profile] effex made that poster we were talking about of Dean Winchester with the Evenstar, crying one Crystal Tear! Shirtless. Of course.


It's... it's beautiful.

It's like the SOUL of the show. And the soul of the show consists of pecs, crystal tears, and glowy shit.
cimorene: A black-and-white vintage photograph of 1920s singer Helen Kane in profile, with a dubious, side-eye expression (Default)
This "Curried Lentil 'Risotto'" is incredibly, incredibly DELICIOUS and easy to make, albeit rather time-consuming, and cheap (apparently she calls it a 'risotto', quotation marks original, simply because a lot of water is slowly cooked into it, but since that quality is hardly unique to risottos, and risottos are known for containing rice which this, being a lentil-only dish, does not, it seems odd to me). I mean, you can look at the recipe yourself, but you basically roast some dried lentils and then dump in a bunch of spices and some water and stand there stirring them for like half an hour. I didn't time it exactly.
cimorene: A black-and-white vintage photograph of 1920s singer Helen Kane in profile, with a dubious, side-eye expression (irony)
YOU GUYS, you know that video where Cook, Archuleta and Syesha talk about their impressions of each other, and Cook says that Archie has a hilarious dry wit and Archie goes, "What's a dry wit?"?

I always thought that was impossibly, unutterably ridiculous, but then I noticed that THE EXTRA INFORMATION ABOUT THE VID says:

For those who don't know, dry wit is humor told in such a way that it's not always obvious. The weird thing about Archie is that his wit and humor aren't even obvious to him because it's unintentional. It's not laugh-out-loud-HAHA humor but rather something that requires a bit of thought to get. Try searching for videos of comedian Steven Wright.

I... I... D:
cimorene: A black-and-white vintage photograph of 1920s singer Helen Kane in profile, with a dubious, side-eye expression (yes)
You may have noticed that "They're not gay, they just love each other" is one of the most enraging political pet peeves that ever enraged me. [personal profile] torachan linked to this post where [ profile] izzardwizzard posted scans of a new OUT interview where Ewan had this cheer-worthy sentiment about it in the context of I Love You Phillip Morris:

"I'm very keen that it's a gay movie," McGregor insists. "There was quite a lot of talk at Sundance that 'Well, it's not a gay movie. It's a film about guys who happen to be gay.' And I was thinking, it's nothing but a gay movie. It's about a gay couple, about a man's sexuality, and he comes out. It's not the point of the film, but let's not pretend it's not a gay film."

cimorene: A black-and-white vintage photograph of 1920s singer Helen Kane in profile, with a dubious, side-eye expression (hay gurl)
Apparently thinking somewhat like the distributors who didn't pick the movie up in America for more than a year, the local theater showed the sneak preview of I Love You Phillip Morris in one of the smaller rooms, and when we ordered our tickets 2 days in advance it was already nearly sold out.

The audience distribution was interesting too: a bunch of het people on dates, as well as bigger groups of friends. A few gay couples spottable, definitely more than usual, at least, but not actually all that many. The last people to come in were some lesbians - older ones than us, maybe late thirties, early forties? - who stood confusedly in the front of the room for a couple of minutes squinting at their tickets. Maybe they hadn't been to the movies there before and didn't know how to find their row. One of them was little and round and had veryvery short hair, and the other one had a blunt bob and bangs and a pissy expression. Frisson of recognition!

It reminded me of a post I read at The Hathor Legacy about the lack of willingness to use female protagonists in Hollywood:

There’s a question that comes up every time I tell my story about how I slowly realized that Hollywood didn’t want movies/shows for, by or about women to profit. To sum up that story, what tipped me off was that whenever film students pointed out how movies/shows for, by or about women had indeed profited, film professionals wouldn’t hear it. Those movies/shows were exceptions! Or it was really the alien/Terminator/Hannibal Lechter people wanted to see, not Ripley, Connor or Starling. Etc. It couldn’t be that people were actually happy to see movies/shows for, by or about women, because that was impossible – end of argument.

Why discriminate if it doesn't profit?
cimorene: A black-and-white vintage photograph of 1920s singer Helen Kane in profile, with a dubious, side-eye expression (Default)
[personal profile] miera_c: I've reached a point where I feel that women writing about male characters, even nominally straight male characters in a homosexual relationship, is a way we are participating in our own erasure.[...] I wonder if I fell into this trap for a while, writing about two white, cisgendered, able-bodied guys. At the time I thought it was this cool, rebellious thing to do. Now I feel like I maybe rationalized it to myself why I was writing about them rather than anything to do with the women. [...] Everybody knows these excuses, and the problem is, in individual cases they may be completely legitimate, but when they get added up and you begin to see a pattern forming, it becomes highly problematic.

[personal profile] laughingrat: sort of parallels some shit I said about slash back in the day (back in the day three months ago) about how women* may just be using slash** as a way of exploring sexual relationships*** between partners with equal social status, or at least between partners who have to deal with incredibly little demeaning sexist bullshit, which leaves the writer and reader free to explore, you know, actual love, or power dynamics, or class, or race, or Hawt Smexins, without having the all-pervasive smelly dead-skunk spectre of Patriarchy all up in the mix, because believe you me, that fucks up enough relationships in the real world**** without it intruding all up into our fic, too.

[community profile] linkspam's sexism tag

These posts, out of the current wave of debate, are resonating most for me. I feel [personal profile] miera_c's point quite strongly and a lot of times I find myself on hiatus from fandom sources entirely and reading books because it's the only place to get woman-centric narratives (see my old post My tv and fandom consumption: a quest for diversity). But while [personal profile] miera_c reads het for more representations of women, I, like [personal profile] laughingrat, prefer to read about romantic relationships that aren't marked by gender hegemony. Sex is sex - I don't dislike het for that reason - but het is not queer enough for me because of the way male-female interactions are marked by patriarchy. The relationships feel different and I can't get invested in them at the gut level, the way I can in queer romance, even if it's about men and not women like I'd prefer (see my old post gay media invisibility: representations of our own (gay genre) vs queering the text (slash): "This is why slash goggles aren't enough - because it's not enough for it to be visible to slashers; we need to be visible to everybody.") I also am not willing to discard my queer identity entirely in favor of my identity as a woman, which is what I'd feel I was doing if I moved to full-time het just because of the women.

More f/f is what I want the most, but here the oppression of patriarchy intrudes again, because all of the narratives are about white men. (And that pisses me off enormously, but that's another rant.) There isn't a twentieth of the possibility to queer readings of mainstream media about female main characters because we have so few female main characters in the sff genre field. Teyla, whom [personal profile] miera_c mentions, is a main character, but Teyla/Elizabeth is quantitatively different from Sheppard/McKay because Teyla and Elizabeth have a tiny, tiny fraction of John and Rodney's onscreen interactions with each other. Because of this - shows refusing to pass the Bechdel test with a very wide margin - f/f becomes a similar exercise to writing Lorne/Parrish - taking secondary characters, inventing backstory and largely inventing their relationship. That is a different sort of writing and a different sort of fannish engagement, and it's not as accessible and easy to get enthused about for many people. It takes away the possibility of shipping along as you watch in large part.

This is upsetting, but it doesn't change the fact that my imagination is more engaged by the primary narrative of the things I watch and read, and more invested in the protagonists. Of course it is: the themes, the secondary plot-arcs, they are all devoted to echoing the main plot arcs, to making you think about the protagonists' development and journeys and experiences. I can't get the female narratives I crave out of the amount of screentime given to the one or two women (always secondary) in an ensemble cast. I don't even try: I read books instead, or re-watch a few movies over and over. Where are the female equivalents of Kirk/Spock, Holmes/Watson, Sheppard/McKay, Picard/Q, Harry/Draco, Merlin/Arthur? There are few examples in the history of genre film (I do watch some non-genre shows, but they don't engage me in the same way - neither do they engage the rest of media fandom in the same way, evidently, because the fandoms of non-genre shows are as a rule much smaller), and no examples in the current crop of genre film and TV that I know of since Dollhouse and Sarah Connor Chronicles were canceled - not unless you move out into the secondary characters. Of course there is lots of woman-centric literature, but it rarely reaches the levels of fame and recognition that most healthy literary fandoms boast.

The net result is that if I prefer queerable major characters with other major characters of the same gender in basically mainstream media fandoms, I am mostly engaged by m/m slash. If I prefer female-centric genre stories, I have very few options in current tv and movies, even if I'm willing to go for ones which don't have very active fandoms. If I prefer female-centric media and queerable stories about major characters (which I do), I'm mostly shit out of luck. I can have one at a time, but not both, without wading into the much less easy and engaging waters of small fandoms, inactive fandoms, long-dead fandoms. Fandom thrives on community. It requires a lot more to be active in a small one, without the promise of a reliable audience. And fandoms grow exponentially, so the less there is the more it stagnates, while the more excitement builds, the easier it is to share enthusiasm with other fans, and the more creativity blossoms.

There are two ways to interpret all this: that our choices as queer feminists participating in our own erasure by devoting our time to m/m slash make logical sense, or that we're doing this to ourselves. Both are true. As [personal profile] bookshop says, if we want more women characters in our fandoms, we are simply going to have to fight against paucity of canon, lukewarm fan response, waves of hate from the misogynist probably-a-majority-I'm-not-sure. We're going to have to seek canon out instead of waiting for it to seize our attention, because the majority of media texts are all about men.
cimorene: A black-and-white vintage photograph of 1920s singer Helen Kane in profile, with a dubious, side-eye expression (kinky!)
[personal profile] melannen has collected data from various polls in different parts of fandom on the percentages identifying as queer, which range from 30-something to 70-something percent.

Science, y'all.

It's science, but this is not representative statistics. Sampling would be fairly impossible in online fandom, when even defining where to look for data is hard enough. That doesn't mean you can't get any information from the polls, of course, it just means you can't know how representative the data is of fandom as a whole. This doesn't show that between 30 and 70 percent of "slash Fandom" is queer, but it does show that in easily specifiable subsets of fandom spaces, significant minorities (samples of the individual polls are too small to be extremely precise for the smaller social networks they represent), or even majorities, are queer. And that is still enough to say that that tired old chestnut that slash is "mostly" by and for straight women is, at best, questionable and representative of only certain parts of fandom. When the demographics of fandom sub-groups vary so widely from each other, is it even appropriate to make any generalizations about (slash) fandom as a whole?

[personal profile] bluflamingo: Not all of us write m/m, or f/f fic because we think it's hot. Some of us write it because in our world, people are gay, and since we're not going to see gay space explorers or gay marines or gay FBI agents on our tv screens any time soon, we have to write it ourselves, so we do.

[ profile] maryaminx: See, for me, being gay isn't just about how I prefer boobs over penis. It's how I see relationships. It's how I relate to everyone around me, how I lost friends when I was eleven and didn't know what the hell was going on, how I see myself and my future. [...] So to read slash, to see other gay people come together in relationships portrayed as normal, as good, was invaluable.

[community profile] linkspam's GLBTQ tag
cimorene: A black-and-white vintage photograph of 1920s singer Helen Kane in profile, with a dubious, side-eye expression (crack)
You guys, possibly the funniest post I have ever seen on!

One of my mom's aunts totally looks like this, by the way, except less bearded. I met her and her husband at a family reunion once. It was scary. She was wearing a sweatshirt with a coke spill on the front of it bearing a winking yellow smiley face that said something like "I Farted" under a pair of grimy half-fastened overalls.
cimorene: A black-and-white vintage photograph of 1920s singer Helen Kane in profile, with a dubious, side-eye expression (ouch)
What are your suggestions for ways to handle telephone solicitors for charities? I never heard of many of these organizations, and in any event, I've read that some fundraisers may keep the bulk of the donations.

After verifying my name, each solicitor rattles off a long, prepared speech about the vital work of the charity. I wait until they reach the part about which donation level "best suits my needs," and reply: "Thank you, but I don't respond to telephone solicitations. Good luck with your campaign." Then I hang up. Despite their uninvited intrusion, I don't wish to be impolite to these people, but is there a way to cut their fundraising spiels short?

Sure: Give the same speech you already give, but give it earlier -- the very minute that you realize that it is a solicitation. Miss Manners considers it a courtesy to the caller not to make him recite the entire speech when it is doomed to produce no result.

See, Wax? I TOLD you.


cimorene: A black-and-white vintage photograph of 1920s singer Helen Kane in profile, with a dubious, side-eye expression (Default)


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