Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Dodging Bullets While You're Trying To Find Your Way

Okay. I was hoping to avoid this. I really was. I've mentioned several times how sick and tired I am of this nonsense, but I was pushed over the edge tonight. I'm doing this once. I'm jumping into the gun control debate/war/bullshit nonsense.

Okay. I'm taking three minutes to step away from the blog, not be angry and I'll be back. You'll be here, right?

Okay. Now that I am calm I will proceed with much less ranting than would have gone on had I not taken a moment.

I want to start by saying that I am well and truly sick of the whole gun control issue. Seriously. I am tired of Facebook and Twitter posts on it, I'm sick of my morning news being inundated with updates about the whole issue and what the government plans to do about it. I'm just tired of it all. That said, though, there was a post on Facebook tonight by one of my acquaintances that set me off. I want to discuss it now so that I can get all of this off my chest and get the angry out of my brain because it will irritate me all night if I do not.

First things first, I want to be clear. I am not anti-gun. We have a gun in our house. Everyone in our home knows how to operate it. I even recently went to the gun range with Dad and shot a few rounds. It was relaxing and an interesting form of recreation. Now that we have that out of the way, let's proceed.

I think there should be gun laws, and that they should be enforced. Here's a list of things I think are a good idea:

If you want to purchase a gun you should have to pass a criminal background check. I don't think people with a criminal background, especially a violent one, should be able to own a gun. I'm not talking parking tickets or whatever, either. I'm talking about drugs, robbery, assault- that sort of thing. These people have already proved that they are a danger to society and should not be allowed to further endanger it by having possession of a firearm.

I also believe you should have to take some sort of basic mental health test before you get one. No, no one is completely adjusted. But I do think that we could do more to keep guns out of the hands of maniacs by doing this.

I believe that all guns should be sold by licensed dealers who would be held responsible for the sale of weapons to unsuitable people, people who by law should not be in possession of those weapons. I also believe that every gun should be registered. This means that the serial number on each gun should be kept in a register by the government and when that gun is sold by its owner it should be re-registered in the name of its new owner. If a private gun owner should want to sell their firearm, they should be held to the same regulations as a dealer would be held to. This enhances accountability of all parties involved. Once a gun is registered, the owner should have to produce some form of annual or biannual verification that they are still in  possession of that gun. If they are not, they should be able to provide details as to where that gun has gone.

All people who own a gun should have to take classes in firearm safety and use. This is already a requirement for conceal and carry in many states. I do not think it unreasonable that it should be a requirement for all gun owners. If you're going to have a deadly weapon in your home, you should know how to operate it. I think that's reasonable.

I don't think private citizens need to own automatic weapons. Period. I have never heard one good reason they need to posses them. Not one. And no, I don't count "The Constitution says I can, and I like shooting them" as a good reason.

I am not saying that there should be no guns. I think a person has a right to protect their personal autonomy and that of their family. I think they are useful in the context of recreation and hunting. I think that using them for that purpose is fine. I do. There's nothing wrong with that. But I also think there is nothing unreasonable about wanting there to be limits to ownership as a matter of personal and public safety.

I've heard a lot of people spout statistics about gun violence versus other violence. I don't really hold with it. There have been relatively few (and none in recent memory) mass killings with weapons like knives. I'm not saying it can't be done, only that it is much harder to do. In my state, and in many of the states around me, there are already in place many restrictions on the sale of knives as well. Certain kinds are prohibited and there are rules about the ones that are sold by licensed dealers. There is no fuss over that. As an outdoorsman, I use knives and prefer them as a form of personal protection. But I do not argue that some are more dangerous than others and should be restricted.

No one seems to argue that access to explosives that can create bombs and deadly gasses should be restricted. Everyone seems to think this is reasonable. No one cries out second amendment rights over these restrictions, even though those things are also used as forms of "arms" for out "militia" - the US military. That is because it is recognized that for the common good it is much better to have restrictions to protect the citizenry of this country. I see gun control as just that, an effort to make sure that the use of these weapons is controlled.

I have never, not once -despite the hysteria of my more conservative friends- heard any elected official ever suggest that all guns should be made illegal. I have never heard them suggest that no person should be able to own them. I have only heard that there should be reasonable restrictions to the sale and purchase of those guns. I don't think that is unreasonable. If you are, as most of my friends claim, a responsible gun owner than you have already registered your firearm, taken classes, know how to use is and purchased them in a legal manner. A person such as that should have no problem with these suggestions because they are already operating within the bounds of the law. Unless, of course, they own an automatic weapon. And to all of those people I reiterate- Why? What in the name of heaven do you need one for. Give me a reasonable answer and I might change my mind. But to date, I've never heard one.

Now, for the thing that truly set me off tonight and made me want to talk about this. This picture:

As both a liberal and a rape victim I cannot tell you how much this offends and upsets me.

First, because not all rapes are preventable by the use of a gun. In fact, most rapes (statistically 80-85%) are done by someone you know, in a setting familiar to you. Sure, if you're in a dark alley you might be willing to pull out a gun and shoot that person. Unfortunately, most of us will not carry (even if we have a conceal carry permit) a gun on a date, a trip with our family to a church event or in our own homes or the homes of our friends. This is simply an impracticable solution.

Second, this is an advocating violence to repress violence. I don't agree with that. Now, I am not saying if you are attacked you shouldn't fight back. You should. In fact, I encourage every woman I know to take a rape prevention and self defense course. If you are a male and there is a local organization who will allow you to attend, by all means do so (a lot will not, since it makes women feel vulnerable, though it is certainly true that men can be attacked as well, and that shouldn't be forgotten.). But pulling out a gun and shooting creates a whole new ballgame when it comes to violence. Yes, I agree that preservation of personal autonomy is important, and sometimes deadly force is necessary, but I also think that it is important to remember that once a gun is put into the picture of any scenario the likelihood of someone being gravely injured or killed is substantially raised. Do I think sex offenders should be punished? Absolutely. To the fullest extent of the law. But I also think it is important to be mindful of the consequences of your actions, self-defense or no.

Most of you who have known me for some time know that I was attacked by my pastor's son (whom I was dating) and several of his friends. Had I pulled out a gun and shot them, I cannot even begin to imagine the fallout from that decision. Would it have stopped the attack? Maybe. But several of those men were also gun  owners, and they could have hurt me as well. Would I have stopped it if I could? You know I would have. But the use of a gun would not have aided me in any substantial way in that situation, and I am aware of it. There had not been, in the whole of my life, a single situation where I was involved in some sort of personal violence where I would have been okay with pulling a gun and shooting that person. Those of you who know me well will know how that speaks volumes to the amount of personal control I have now, considering the horror I have of those events and the resulting personal damage that it caused me.

Finally, and I cannot say this enough, this picture is a vile and horrible way of scaring people into the acceptance of guns. I do not advocate or own a gun because I was raped. I do not advocate the use of rape as a means of convincing anyone that your political agenda is acceptable. Only a person who has been raped or who has a loved one who has lived through that terrible ordeal can understand the magnitude of the experience, or the horror that this sort of threat presents. I do not like being told that if I do not allow unrestricted access to guns for all that I or someone I care about will have that happen to them. I do not like rape as a threat. It is unconscionable in my opinion. To further that threat with pictures of rape violence is not only terrifying, it is crass and insensitive. As a liberal, it offends me to no end that any conservative would believe or put about the idea that I would rather have a person violently violated then allow them to protect themselves. As a victim of rape, as an intelligent person and as a woman it disgusts me that anyone would use a tactic like this to frighten and pressure me into agreeing with their political agenda.

I have no problem with the gun control debate, so long as it is intelligent and civil. I think there are reasonable solutions that everyone can agree on. But I do not agree and will never condone the use of that sort of tactic to encourage people to make a certain decision. I am thoroughly tired of listening to the hysteria and accusations of both sides and a am irritated to no end that I am forced to look at images like that one any time someone wants to shock or cause debate, or whatever.

I think that, in all things, being reasonable and intelligent can solve this issue.

Now that I've gotten that off my chest, I can go about my business and avoid a personal explosion on Facebook with regards to this particular political issue. I'm always willing, of course, to discuss the issue, though I would encourage everyone (always) to be reasonable, rational and avoid the name calling and pettiness that always seems to accompany this sort of hot-button political issue.

Peace and Love, Y'all

You Make Me Feel Like A Candied Apple

So you can thank one of my friends for posting another sex survey, because you know I had to fill it out. It was a good time. I don't think I've answered most of these before, so new stuff. That's always fun, right?

1: Kitchen counter, couch, or on top of the dryer?
Couch. I know this sounds totally boring, but honestly, it’s just more comfortable. I’m all about comfort.
2: Your last sexual encounter: Good or bad, and why?
Great. Because Kitten always is.
3: A fictional person that you think would be good in bed:
Good grief, I’ve been reading so many romance novels lately that it seems like every fictional character would be. From classic literature thought? I’m certain Rhett Butler knew what he was doing. He said as much, didn’t he? As for women, I’m pretty sure I’d have a nice time with Elizabeth Bennett. She seems playful.
4: Something that never fails to make you horny:
Making out
5: Where is one place you would never have sex:
In a graveyard. It is just so disrespectful.
6: The most awkward moment during a sexual experience was when:
Oh, good lord, I have a thousand of these. I think the winner would be when one of my former girlfriends stuck her gum on her palm during sex without me knowing about it. It got, uh, tangled up. I ended up having to use a razor to get it all out. Not a great day. Certainly made me feel awkward after.
7: Weirdest thing that ever made you horny:
I don’t know. I’ve had some weird things get me going. Usually it’s a song that isn’t meant to be sexy at all. Once or twice a cartoon has done it. Seems weird to me, anyway.
8: What is the best way to sexually bind someone:
I assume this means tie them up? I’ve always been partial to soft fabrics. I think it’s more comfortable.
9: What is the fastest way to make you horny:
10: Top or bottom?
Yes, please. I don’t really have a preference. It depends on my mood.
11: We were about to have sex but then ________
My grandmother showed up at my house unannounced.
12: Is one orgasm enough? Are multiple orgasms necessary?
One is fine. More is fun. I don’t even care if I don’t have one. As long as I have a good time.
13: Something that you have hidden in your room that you don’t want anyone to find:
Truly, I don’t have much that I would be ashamed to have someone find, although I put all of my “personal” stuff in a specific drawer…
14: Weirdest nickname a significant other has ever called you:
I’ve never had any truly weird ones. I know that’s a boring answer, but it’s true.
15: Two things you like [or dislike] about oral sex:
Like: taste, how messy it can be
Dislike: much harder…I guess that you have to stop at some point?
16: Weirdest sexual act some has performed [or tried to perform] on/with you:
I had a partner once who wanted to use the ice cream stuff Magic Shell on me. It was weird. Also, it didn’t work because I’m not, you know, ice cream temperature.
17: Have you ever tasted yourself? [If no, would you?] [If yes, what did you think?]
Yes. It was fine.
18: Is it ever okay to not use a condom:
Oh, this is a touchy subject for me. I’ll substitute the word protection for a condom and say, no not really, if you’re in a casual relationship. If you are in an intimate relationship, you and your partner have been tested and have discussed it and are completely exclusive and you trust them, then I think you can talk about not using protection. That’s my situation. But you have to know your partner is honest. You also have to be prepared for the consequences of not using it (for heterosexuals, pregnancy) if you do make that decision.
19: Who was the sexiest teacher you ever had?
I don’t think I’ve ever had a teacher I thought was sexy. I had one once in college who was a former marine and tattooed everywhere and he had a badass personality, and that is (in theory) pretty sexy. But it wasn’t something that made him attractive to me, if that makes sense. I can find someone sexy and not be attracted to them.
20: A food that you would like to use during a sexual experience:
NO. I don’t like food in bed. Ever.
21: How big is too big:
When it hurts all the time or they don’t know how to use it.
22: One sexual thing you would never do:
Watersports. Ew.
23: Biggest turn on:
I don’t think there’s one set thing. I suppose being sexy?
24: Three spots that drive you insane:
My back, my wrist, the inside of my lower lip.
25: Worst possible time to get horny:
When I’m in a bad mood or feeling self-conscious. It always ends badly.
26: Do you like it when your sexual partner moans?
If it is real, sure.
27: Worst sexual idea you ever had:
I won’t say their name here. *evil grin*
28: How much fapping is too much fapping:
When you hurt yourself?
29: Best sexual complement you ever got:
This seems like a good place to brag and mention all those times you hear “you’re the best I’ve ever had” but that’s silly. Not to mention, you can never tell if someone is just stroking your ego. I love it when my partner tells me I make them feel loved, or special. That means I’m doing it right.
30: Bald, landing strip, Jumanji:
I prefer tasteful grooming, but I would rather my partner be comfortable with themselves than it be to my taste. Self-confidence is always sexy.
31: Is it good sex if you don’t nut:
Yeah, it can be
32: Fill in the blank: “If they ____________, we are fucking.
Give us a few hours alone and it’s a good day
33: What your favorite part of your body?
My hair. But that has nothing to do with sex.
34: Favorite foreplay activities:
All of them, especially kissing
35: Love (>,<, or =) Sex?
I’m not certain about these abbreviations (I won’t lie) but I will say that love does not equal sex or vise versa, although they can go hand in hand and are usually better that way.
36: What do you wear to bed?
37: When was the first time you masturbated:
I don’t remember. Whenever it was, it obviously wasn’t a big deal to me.
38: Do you have any nude/masturbating pictures/video of yourself?
Yes, yes and yes.
39: Have you ever/when was the last time you had sex outside?
Yes, but it has been a good long while.
40: Have/would you ever have sex in public?
I have and no, that’s not normally my thing.
41: Have/would you ever had a threesome?
Yes and Yes. I’m in a triad. That’s part of the deal, right?
42: What is one random object you’ve used to masturbate?
I’ve never chosen anything random. How vanilla am I now…?
43: Have/would you ever masturbate at work/school?
I have before. I’d like to not do it again.
44: Have/would you ever have sex on a plane?
No and probably not. Like I said, I’m all about comfort. And I don’t care for planes.
45: What is one song you’d like to have sex to?
Um, I think I’ve had it to most of the ones I’ve wanted to. I like Goldfrapp…
46: What is something nonsexual that makes you horny?
47: Most attractive celebrity?
Male? I’m really into Robert Downey Jr. Female? Michelle Rodriguez is hot.
48: Do you watch gay/lesbian porn? why/why not?
Yes. And I watch straight porn. But I like the real thing better.
49: If a child was born on the occasion of the last time you had sex, how old would that child be right now?
Two weeks old
50: Has anyone ever posted nude pictures of you online?
51: What is one thing that NEVER makes you horny?
Um, I hate overt come ons. They’re lame.
52: Do you have stretch marks? (How do you feel about them? Has anyone ever had a problem with them?)
I have slight ones on my legs from when I was a dancer. They make me feel a bit shy but no one I know of has cared.
53: Do you like giving head? (why/why not)
No. I’m a lesbian. But I do like going down on ladies. A bunch.
54: How do you feel about tattoos on someone you are interested in?
I guess it depends on the tattoo, but I don’t really care. If I am interested in them, the ink won’t make a difference.
55: How would you feel about taking someone’s virginity?
I have. I suppose it is a special moment for them, and you should try to be good to them, but I don’t think it’s the end all be all of sex.
56: Is there any food you would NOT recommend using during a sexual encounter?
I hate food in the bedroom. But I would especially discourage chocolate, meats (especially pork) mint (the burn) and of course, gum.
57: Is there anything you do on Tumblr that you would not like your significant other to see?
58: Do you own any sex toys? (what is it? how long have you had it?)
Yes. I own a ton of them. I have bondage toys and implements and stuff. Most of them are relatively new, because they need to be in good condition if you don’t want to make yourself sick.
59: Would you give your significant other unrestricted access to your Tumblr for a day?
60: Would you be offended if your significant other suggested you get plastic surgery?
Yes. Probably.
61: Would you rather be a pornstar or a prostitute?
I’d rather not work in the sex trade honestly. But if I had to choose, probably prostitute. There’s no permanent record of that, is there.
62: Do you watch porn?
63: How small is too small?
Size doesn’t matter if you know how to please your partner.
64: Have you ever been called a freak? Why?
Yes. It has happened various times, for various things. None of them, in my opinion, we’re terribly freaky things, either. I’ve had a few seriously vanilla partners. Like, anything not missionary position was wild.
65: Who gave you your last kiss? Did it mean anything?
Kitten. It always does.
66: Would you switch phones with your significant other for a day?
67: Do you feel comfortable going “commando”?
Depends on what I’m wearing.
68: Would you have a problem with going down on someone if they hadn’t shaved their pubic hair?
69: If you could give yourself head, would you?
Well, I’m not a boy, so I don’t know. I mean, that’s a different form of masturbation, so I wouldn’t think it would be all that special. It seems like that would be extremely uncomfortable.
70: Booty or Boobs?
Sure? I don’t care one way or another. I truly don’t, although I suppose I look at the backside more than the front. Neither one are my particular fetish.
71: If you had a penis, what would you name it?
Captain Kitty.
72: Have you ever been on an official date?
Well, there weren’t referees or anything…yes, of course I have.
73: Have you ever cheated on someone? (Why?)
Yes. Because I was unhappy. Because I wanted to. Because I wanted more. And no, I don’t feel guilty about it either.
74: If you were a stripper, what would your name be?
Alecya G
75: Have you ever had sex in your parents bed? (Would you?)
76: How would you react if you found out your parents had sex in your bed?
Oh dear lord. No thank you. But if they did? I suppose I would make sure they washed and changed the sheets. It’s a little late by that time, right? Then again, my parents are divorced. I might die of shock.
77: What was your reaction the first time you saw a penis/vagina?
78: If you had a penis for a day, what are five things you would do?
Buy condoms. Have sex. Wear guy jeans. Wear Boxers, briefs and a man-thong, so I could have an opinion on the issue. 

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Make My World Stop

I know I've been rather quiet this last month so I thought I would drop in. I've had a nasty combination of tons of headaches and lots of work. None of these things do much to improve my disposition, so I suppose it is for the better than I wasn't around to be grumpy. Piled on top of that I've had an unusual amount of beta work, which keeps me fairly busy. Of course,  I took that on myself, but I wasn't expecting some of the projects I took on to be so time consuming. Most of those are done now, though, and it gives me the opportunity to do a little more writing on my own, which I am happy for.

The majority of my non-sick time has been spent planning our trip for May and June. I don't know if I mentioned it or not. Since Kitten is graduating, Kmom is taking us on an 18 day trip. We've decided to go to South Carolina. We're going to spend a majority of it camping, though we'll be roughing it in hotels in Charleston. I'm really excited about the trip.

We're planning on doing some historic tours and some ghost tours as well. We'll get a chance to explore a city I have long been wanting to visit. Once we finish up there we'll be going to Hunting Island to camp, a great place for hiking, bird watching, paddling and enjoying the outdoors. We'll head to Columbia next, to check out the capitol city and explore the area around Sesquicentennial State Park. There's a lot to see and do. I've been banking on a trip to their zoo, which is one of the top rated ones in the US by travelers. So it should be a good time. After we hit the capitol, we're planning on moving up to the mountain region. This is the part I am really looking forward to. We're going to spend five days exploring trails, waterfalls and the mountain region. We're going to white water raft the Chattooga River, which should be an exciting time, and enjoy the upper country to its fullest.

Most people would probably not consider this a very relaxing time, but I am looking forward to it. While we're away I'm going to try and quit smoking. I figure if I can be distracted and entertained for 18 days without smoking, I've got it made. I think I can do it.

Work has been...well, interesting. ABC office is certainly different. I no longer feel like a moron, though sometimes I think some of the staff still think I am. It irritates me that some people will judge my intelligence based on my lack of a college degree, but there you go. It makes me want one more, that's for certain. Either way, I've learned my way around the office, made a few friends and I've discovered I understand a lot more than I give myself credit for. I'll admit to some days feeling frustrating, because I cannot work without supervision because I have not the discretion to decide which things to keep and which to get rid of. There seems to be a reluctance to pack things away. Having been through a couple office moves before, I know this is going to lead to a hectic end of my employ. However, I do not call the shots, so I can only wait and see how things go. Maybe I'll be wrong. (I doubt it, though.)

Otherwise, life moves on at its slumbering pace. I've gotten next to no writing done, though I have an excellent beta who is working with me on my old MS and giving me fabulous feedback. Every now and again what I need is a good whipping over my writing, and she's helping me there. I love support, but a little straight shooting never hurts. Its improving my writing, certainly.

Yesterday I also talked to Flyguy for the first time in months. Since I stopped working at Casa Bueno I've seen less and less of him. I expected a little of that, because he is a busy person and so am I. I didn't expect for him to drop off the face of the planet, though. That was annoying. And disappointing. Of course, I've always been one of those people who believes that friendship is a two way street and I won't be the one to put in all the effort. There's no point in that. I won't chase after someone when I have a life full of people who actually WANT to see me. Still, I confess I was a little disappointed. He's gottten himself a girlfriend. She's not the person I would have picked out, and I think she is way to young but that's not my call either. Between her and work he's had no time for me. So I stopped bothering.

And then yesterday. I went to pick up Oscelot from work and when I came in I smiled at him and Mr. Boss and he came over and sat down and talked to me. It felt strange, because I hadn't spoken to him in so long. He asked a bunch of questions about how I am doing, though I am sure he could have gotten any of what I told him from Oscelot if he had asked her. He made sure to tell me how very busy he had been and then apologize for not talking to me. On the one hand, I feel like I'm being a jerk when I feel like he's mouthing platitudes, but then, I think I'm right too. We'll see. I expect he'll drop by later this week or early next if he truly means to try and make things up. Either way, I've talked the whole situation over with Sakura, and I've resigned myself to the fact that he's really not going to be a part of my life unless I throw myself in his way. And I won't do that.

In the meantime, I've got tons of spellwork I need to be working on, and I have lessons to plan and a book to write. I also have one to edit. I've got plenty to do before we head off into the wilds of South Carolina (including convincing my mom I'm not going to die while on the trip!). Kitten and I just passed the five year dating mark, and I'm happy about that. Its amazing how fast time moves when you aren't looking. It is a wonderful thing. I'm so lucky to have her.

I hope everyone here is having a pleasant new year so far and has a lot of fun things to be out doing and enjoying.


Sunday, February 3, 2013

Na Na Na Na Na Na YEAH!

Anyone who knows me well knows that I am a huge fan of Jane Austen. I've got copies, sometimes multiple ones, of all her works. I own all the DVD adaptations. I even have some of the fan work and mashups like Seth Graham Smith's "Pride and Prejudice and Zombies." If there's something out there that smacks of Austen, I've probably got it in my house somewhere.

Naturally, I'm a huge fan of Pride and Prejudice. Its my favorite work of hers, and I think its a brilliantly written novel. For me, there isn't much in this world that's as fun as cracking open my incredibly dog-eared copy of P&P and rereading the exploits of Elizabeth Bennet. I love her humor and wit. I love her mistakes and her ability to learn with humility. She's a great character.

About two or three months ago Sakura came over, and knowing I am a huge fan, he asked me if I had seen the new YouTube series based on P&P. I hadn't. Naturally, I was a little leery of an online adaptation of my favorite book. I thought there was no way that anyone could make the book as engaging on screen as it is in print. I love the movie adaptations, but none of them, up until now, really spoke to me.

The Lizzie Bennet Diaries has changed all of that.

This is Lizzie Bennet, and I'm a little bit in love.

The Lizzie Bennet Diaries is one of the most wonderful adaptations of any book I've ever seen. And I've seen plenty of them. Its part of why I am so critical of movie/screen adaptations of great books. They normally ruin the original. I loved Jurassic Park before I read the book. Gone with the Wind is a great movie, but it will never compare to the original writing. Even the recent adaptations of books like Memoirs of a Geisha (Arthur Golden) and The Hunger Games (Susanne Collins), while wonderful, and really close to the original story, leave a sense of wanting when it comes to viewing versus reading. Not so with the fabulous LBD.

The whole premise of this adaptation is that Lizzie is a graduate student in Mass Communications and is doing a vlog about her life as part of her final project. I love this premise, because it gives the viewer, immediately, a solid reason as to why Lizzie would be recording the craziness of her life and family for all of mankind to view. After you deal with that idea (and its used well throughout the storyline- not just as a set-up for the series) you can dive right in to the awesomeness that is LBD.

The characters are amazing. I love how the creators of the show Bernie Su and Hank Green have managed to keep the show, despite the pantings of the fandom (and there's a surprisingly huge fandom) focused on Lizzie and in a more peripheral way, her family. This isn't about Lizzie and Darcy or about Jane and Bing Lee (great name, right?). The creators got it right- this video series is all about the girl making it. And as an added benefit, you get to see a wonderful cast pf characters, the ones you loved so much in the book, come to life in ways you never imagined.

I won't spoil what happens in the series for you, because I know you're going to trust my judgement of all things Austen and go check it out. You should, really. Even if you go on a marathon watch, you've only lost six hours, and really, that's like watching Lord of the Rings in its entirety. You can do it. But I will say this- it is seriously addictive. When I first picked up the channel on You Tube (you can click here to go there when you're done reading here) I watched the first few episodes, decided it was too much fun for the girls to miss out, so I stopped, waited for them to get home from work, and then spent the evening in front of the computer with them watching the series up until we ran out of videos. We skipped dinner, ordered pizza and ate in front of the television. That's huge in our house. The only other time we've done that was when we streamed election results this last November. From then on, the girls and I watch the newest updates as soon as we can. When the girls started missing some because life gets you busy sometimes, I started watching on my own. And then I discovered what geniuses the creators of the show really are.

There are tumblr accounts. There are twitter accounts. (Go to this page to get them all) Lydia has her own channel on YouTube. Charlotte's little sister has her own channel, too. Heck- Lydia's cat Kitty Bennet (see what they did there?) has its own Twitter account. Weeks before you even see some characters they start popping up on tumblr and twitter, they follow Lizzie's videos. Its amazing and intricate and smart. Pemberley has its own channel, twitter feed. It blows my mind the amount of time that they creators of the show spend working these little trans-media tidbits into the show. Last week there was a fandom explosion. I won't tell you what its about, I'll let you catch up on the series, but there were rumblings of what was going on in the comments on Lydia's channel days before the video that dropped the bomb was released. But if you don't read YouTube comments, you wouldn't know. I didn't. Until I heard. Until I went to find them myself. And I was mind-blown again. So mind-blown, in fact, that I immediately called Sakura to see if he had seen/heard it yet.

This is a series made to be enjoyed by an internet savvy generation. Can you just watch the LBD videos and enjoy the series? Oh, absolutely. They write it with those people in mind. But when you get down to brass tacks, there is so much more there for a person who lives on their computer. Like me. Like most of my friends. I've never experienced something like this- a form of entertainment that is so interactive and exciting. As an experience, its incredible. I get up every day and like the fan geek that I am, I check the channels, I check YouTube, twitter and tumblr. I check it throughout the day to see what's happening. I subscribed on Facebook. I'm obsessed- something no other adaptation has been able to do to me. Do I love the Hunger Games? Sure, but I don't check the fan sites. I lost the obsession with Potter like that days after it started. But for me, LBD is going about this the right way. I can't get enough.

What's even more amazing to me, is that the show's creators, the actors, the producers are all so open about what they do and why they do it. There's hangouts on YouTube and live chats via twitter and Facebook. The people who created the show listen to the playlists that fans make, they look at the fan art. They listen to the joys and sorrows of the fans. They think of things I would never have thought of...when Darcy asks Lizzie to the theater they actually know what's playing in SF at the moment of the airing, what's on in neighboring cities and they even have head cannon answers that make sense within the storyline, even if they aren't playing. The crazy thing is, you'll never never comes up in the story. But they have that answer for you, just because you might ask. I love that.

Even if you don't care how revolutionary and wonderful the adaptation is, the story itself is enough to keep you happy. The execution is amazing. In a vlog, we know we won't see how do you deal with that in an adaptation?

Meet Mrs and Mr. Bennet, as portrayed by Lizzie and her bff Charlotte. Its genius, right? The use of costume theater is an amazing idea, and one they use to great effect. Especially with Bing Lee, Darcy and Caroline, who you don't see on camera until much later in the series.

The dialog is fun. The lines are witty. And there is still an amazing amount of original Austen left in there, just in case you're a Janeite. The way the characters are developed and adapted for modern times is great. They're completely believable. The actors inhabit those characters completely. I've even seen on a behind the scenes video somewhere that the actors, for the most part, use their own clothes for the shoots. They are the character they play.

I can't recommend this series enough. I truly can't. But if you don't want to take my word for it, check out these articles about the series:

The Guardian calling it the best adaptation ever. Seriously.
Buzzfeed calling the series YouTube's hidden Masterpiece Theater
Mrs. Magazine discusses how great it is that the series is Lizzie centered here

Those are just a sampling from new sources (The Wall Street Journal even covered the show in January!)

Beyond my trying to convince all of you there's nothing better to watch than this series, I have to express the joy and admiration I feel every time I interact with this series. Yeah, yeah...maybe its just lonely housewife talk. Maybe I'm a huge geek. But in a world where I am increasingly irritated every time I open Facebook or Twitter or whatever social media platform I'm on it is simply wonderful to have something to look forward to. I like knowing that even though the war (its not a debate anymore) about gun control still rages online, even though I still get spammed with Jesus posts on Facebook, despite the fact that I can't get through a day without seeing some stupid, cryptic, passive aggressive post somewhere I can count on Lizzie and her world to make me smile. Even when the series gets dramatic (believe me, it does) there's something sadly real about it, something human, and it makes me relate a lot more than I do when I'm looking at my friends posting about how they need (another) new iPhone but are too broke to get it yet. Is that sad? Yeah, probably. But the truth is that the LBD has managed to create a show that taps in to the essence of what makes us human, fallible and ultimately lovable.

Have you ran into the LBD yet? What did you think? If you haven't, go check it out. Let me know how you feel. Even if you aren't an Austen fan, you'll thank me.


Note- the title for this post is the last line of the outtro to Lydia's videos.

Second note- obviously I don't own any of the articles, photos or people I've mentioned. I do not work for the news sources I cited. My opinions are the only thing I possess.