Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Worst Goth Ever

I see so much anxiety on the Internet about goth: what it is, how we can define it, whether something is or isn't, and whether you are enough. (How does one measure gothiness? Is there some kind of "goth unit"? "I am twelve bat-pants gothier than you, so there!")

This doesn't strike me as desirable. Sure, the "Are You Goth or Preppy" quizzes are fairly harmless, but I've seen at least one excellent goth blogger driven off the Internet amidst accusations of her, in some mysterious way, doing goth wrong. Everyone has an opinion on the subculture, it seems, and most of them insist on sharing it with you.

Luckily I needn't worry, because I'm already The Worst Goth Ever. Watch! I can prove it to you.

Ten Reasons I Am the Worst Goth Ever

1. I didn't see The Crow until adulthood, and it's far from my favorite movie.

2. Though I can name some famous goth singers, I have no idea who else plays in their bands.

3. I've never been to a goth club (not for lack of trying, mind you).

4. I don't secretly wish to be a vampire.

5. I own zero velvet clothing items.

6. I think Horace Walpole was a terrible writer, and that The Castle of Otranto reads like a Monty Python skit.

7. I hate the way hairspray smells, and I refuse to tease my hair because it's damaging.

8. I can't stay awake at late-night concerts (even LOUD ones).

9. I don't own foundation.

10. And...this is the big one, are you ready?...I don't love goth music.

I make Robert Smith sad.

The horror! The horror! I can already hear the shrieking across the Internet: "Then you're not a Real Goth!"

I could carefully craft an argument in response to this--something that explains how modern goth culture actually springs from the eighteenth-century aesthetic and literary movement, which I know more about than you, which gives me +20 bat-pants, so there!--but it's pretty much pointless. Once this kind of person has decided that you're Not a Goth, they're not going to listen to anything you have to say.

So why waste your time? Especially when it's time that could be spent making awesome music or sewing gorgeous clothes or writing deliciously spooky novels or in so many other ways contributing to our somewhat hazy, beautifully big-tent subculture, rather than obsessively drawing lines in the sand about who gets to call themselves goth and who doesn't.

Don't like that idea? Or just don't like me? Feel free to bite me. Especially if you're a vampire.*

*I said I didn't want to be a vampire. I didn't say I didn't want to be with a vampire. Helloooooo, Barnabas!

Friday, July 5, 2013

"5 Things" Challenge

Uh oh! Both Underground for Tea and 1666 X 30 tagged me for this challenge. Now who will I nominate? Oh, well, at least I have time to answer, now that the Hellacious Grading Slog has finally been completed.

5 Things I Need Every Day

1. Breakfast. Do not get between me and my morning toast and tea.

2. The Internet. I am horribly addicted and spend hours on the Internet every day, yet somehow fail to blog consistently. Hmph.

3. My fiance. How do I know I'm in love with Linus? Because when we haven't seen each other all day and we're meeting somewhere and I look up and see him walking towards me, I get all warm and melty inside.

4. Music. I often make up stories using music as an imaginary soundtrack. Usually this results in self-aggrandizing rubbish (I am the heroine of my own mind), but sometimes I actually have clever ideas that I'll mine later for proper, on-paper stories. If I don't daydream to music every day, though--at least for ten or twenty minutes--I get horribly cranky.

5. Animals. We have two cats and a dog, and I spend most of my evenings pointing out to Linus how cute they're being. When I can't snuggle a real animal, I look at lolcats.
This is Vladimir Rasputin. As you can see, he is... different. 
5 Books I Recommend

1. The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien. My favorite book of all time.
2. Wise Child by Monica Furlong. I haven't read this novel since I was a child, but it made quite an impression. Only years later am I beginning to understand some of the wise things this author said.
3. The Tao of Pooh by Benjamin Hoff. My first introduction to Taoist philosophy. I've since read books that explain things better, but none are so charmingly written as this.
4. Practical Magic by Alice Hoffman. When I am having a bad day, I read a few pages of Practical Magic. Invariably, I feel better.
5. The Stainless Steel Rat by Harry Harrison. A fun and, to my mind, under-appreciated sci-fi series. How this has not been made into a movie yet, I don't know (though it's probably for the best).

And may I add, as a sixth book to this list, Tentacles in the Tea by R.M. Callahan? (The "R" stands for Rebecca.) This little collection of short stories is still in the works, but I'll let you know when it's available for sale!

This image is from MaryOMalleyCeramics at Etsy. 

5 Materialistic Wishes for Christmas

1. Lacy blouses with corset backs and stand-up collars.
2. A gorgeously spooky, black-and-white tea set.
3. Less ugly wallpaper.
4. More vacation for Linus.
5. A ball python.

5 Places I Want to Visit

1. Iceland
2. Italy (with my foodie friend Tessa)
3. Ireland (with my very Irish fiance)
4. Cambodia
5. Germany (so I can use what little, rusty German remains)

5 Adjectives That Describe Me

1. "Yepoda!" That's "pretty" in Korean. I hear this on a near-daily basis from total strangers, because--while I'm quite average in the States--my combination of pale skin, big eyes, and small face is solid gold here in East Asia. Another reason why I can't go home.
2. Creative
3. Neurotic
4. Absent-minded
5. Tender-hearted

5 Things I Have to Say to People About Life

1. The only thing you can ever do anything about at all is this moment. Right this second. Right now. Telling people to "live in the moment" is so--ugh--cliche. But seriously, if you  can slow your mind down enough to tackle life one. second. at a time, you'll feel a lot better. I always do. 

2. Never underestimate your capacity for evil. Always understand that, even if you have been "nice" and "sweet" and "kind" your whole life, you have the seeds of hatred and meanness inside you. If you acknowledge them, you can avoid them. It's the people who lie to themselves about how "nice" they are that are the cruelest.

3. Always have animals. I have a working theory that it is impossible to feel depressed with a purring cat in your lap. Unless you have allergies, of course, in which case try a ball python.

4. That imaginary world you want to escape to? That world is here, now. You don't have to go anywhere or change anything. If you look, you can see pieces of it all around, in the most mundane places. But you have to look.

image credit

5. You don't have to be afraid of death. Or life. Or success. Or failure. Or spiders. You have to work your ass off to conquer that fear, but you can do it, and it's worth it. 

Tag! You're It!

1. les pensees de la fleur
2. Lesthi
3. Chloe Noir
4. Where Foxes Say Goodnight

I can't find a fifth blogger with under 200 followers who hasn't already done this challenge. Any suggestions?