Deuces, 2011

So I didn’t originally intend that Quiet Grrrl would be a personal blog, but now that I’m writing about comics over at Novi Magazine, I think personal stuff will hang out over here (considering that blogspot isn’t really used by anybody anymore). 

 

At first I thought that resolutions were really dumb. “Oh hey look at me I am totally going to choose to become super buff/studious/determined this year. Totally unlike all the other years I said I was going to.” I resolved not to resolve to do much of anything. 

 

Then I started thinking about it and I really do want to make some changes in my life. 

 

  • I want to learn how to do different cool things with my nails. Particularly water marbling and doing cool little stripey things. 
Image
 
  • I want to be able to lift a 40 lb barbell with little to no difficulty. 
  • I want to beat every single DDR song on the PS2 DDR games with an A on every single one.
  • I want to stop procrastinating so much when it comes to sitting down and editing. 
  • I want to write more.
  • I want to bake something for a friend at least once a month.

I am never again going to make a stupid resolution like “This is the year I lose 121310 pounds!” 

From where I’m sitting, I’ve got one heck of a life. Check this shit out. My job is amazing. My apartment is super cute. My friends are the most amazing, creative, talented people. They create art and music, and they accept me for the derpy goober that I am. My family, while a little bit crazy, are all loving people (if not pretty weird). 

There is nowhere I’d rather be than right here. 

 

CC NYCC Wrap-up

OK everyone. So NYCC has been over for weeks and weeks. This is the kind of hard-hitting journalism that got me rejected from journalism school made me the valued former Daily Texan staffer that I was for several years (so basically: the comics editor). I can’t write any more blogs until I post this one, so here. Take it! Take all my memories!

I embarked to New York City with one of my very best friends, the amazing and talented Victoria. We were just two young Texans (at heart—V’s from Alabama, and I’m from every boring Army base in the continental US), yet we voyaged to New York City, fueled by our love of comics and our desperate need to get out of Texas for a little while.

This picture obviously has nothing to do with why.

Victoria and I met a lot of cool people while we were at NYCC. We spoke with Terry Moore, who is a very kind person in real life.

Victoria met Dot Com and got a hug from him while I proved myself to be a terrible photographer.

I met some famous people as well.

NYCC was like a force of nature specifically designed to bring us down. We met a good number of Victoria’s personal heroes. I got to speak with Karen Berger, my personal hero, but I also think I saw Maury Povitch somewhere in the crowd. That might have been one of my high points.

We owe our sanity to this distinguished establishment: Twins Pub, in Midtown Manhattan, home of the most wonderful and earnest New York bartender that we tourists had ever met.

Glorious, glorious Twins.

It seemed that time after time, when the pressure of not seeming like a total doop in front of people we really admired got us down, we’d somehow find ourselves at Twins. One late night in Queens, we decided to try and find the East Village in spite of several cancelled trains and somehow we still found our way to Twins.

It's fate.

If you want to know what I did at NYCC, I can sum it up pretty neatly:

1) I did not attend any panels, because I forgot all the ones I wanted to go to. Boo!

2) I got really irritated at having girl butts in my face all damn day. If you like girl butts, NYCC is the place to go. You can see all manner of butts. I am in favor of butts, as a rule, but I did not like that any time you sat down you were surrounded by a posse of almost naked girl butts.

I do not believe in shaming/feeding attention to those who showcase their butts in public places, so this is my artist’s rendition.

We can work out some arrangement if you want to commission this great work for your home or office.

(Hah, I tricked you! I’m an editor!)

3) I learned that I may or may not be woefully inadequate at becoming an editor, but if that fails, someone will maybe end up giving me an award for this annoying persistence thing I’m developing.

I’m sure that if you are still reading, you’re only still here because you want to see some sweet fricken cosplay. Well, your patience has been somewhat rewarded.

True story--as I thanked him for letting me take this, he willed that the Force would be with me.

This one looks like Captain Jack.

There are more pictures (of both cosplayers and of myself and Victoria eating sundry NYC foods, which I am sure is both fascinating and impressive), but I think this is the best of what I’ve got.

Pretty much, NYCC was a terrifying, exhilarating mess and I will never do it again (until next fall).

Highlights from my Doctor Who Series 6 Finale Party

On Sunday, October 2nd I had my very first Doctor Who theme party! A while back, my lovely friends Cat and David had a gathering for “Let’s Kill Hitler” and I was bit by the Doctor Who Theme Party bug.

If you’ve been following my goings-on, you might have seen my Wedding of River Song invitations. Considering how long those invites took to make, I had to make a party worthy of them. It was an evening of fun, friends, and food. My wonderful roommate recently purchased a big-screen HD TV, so we watched the episode in all its high-def glory. I think that around 10 people ended up coming to the party. Here are some images.

This is the TARDIS door that Cat and I made. It is a lot less yellow in person. This thing took hours and hours to put together because we were obsessed with making it proportional.

Just some neat shots from the process of making the cake.

More cake pictures.

This cake took forever to bake. It was a triple-chocolate mousse cake and it was a freaking bitch to pull together let me tell you. The recipe came from America’s Test Kitchen and can be found here. It came out super dark and bitter, and I’m not exactly sure what I did wrong. Everybody seemed to like it but hopefully next time it will be a sweeter and more graceful endeavor. I ended up making a few minor additions–namely, I added a tiny bit of mint to the top layer and sweetened the middle layer up after I discovered how incredibly dark the bottom turned out. I also figured a hint of something unexpected was perfect for the Wedding Cake of River Song. Also DID YOU KNOW that dark blue icing is really difficult to make? That is something I learned yesterday.

The Wedding Cake of River Song

Here is the cake from the side so you can see all the layers.

There was a lot of other food at the party!

All of the foods, ever actually.

While planning the party, I figured that wedding foods would be the most appropriate to make. In addition to the fancy cake, I made tea sandwiches and deviled eggs and set out a nice veggie plate. There were also banana daiquiris but I didn’t get a good shot of those. My plan was to obtain some Jelly Babies as well but after all of the other expenses I cancelled on those. Still, celery and bananas? Any Doctor would feel somewhat at home.

The tea sandwiches turned out to be FUCKING FANTASTIC. Those were made from

  • French bread
  • Romaine lettuce
  • Turkey
  • Parsley
  • Cucumbers
  • Goat Cheese (from my mom’s friend’s goat farm).

Cat and David brought fishfingers and custard as well. They used the recipe from the BBC website. (Matt Smith wasn’t really eating custard but a dressing disguised to look like custard!). If you are curious, here is how you can make it at home.

Rachel made cookies, Riki brought cups and plates, and Claudine brought some chips and drinks for everyone to enjoy. Megan and Grant brought beer. Other people brought other things but I can’t keep up with it all right now!

Here are some of the party people enjoying the shindig! You can barely tell but we pasted glow-in-the-dark stars all over the walls for the party. We're just going to leave them up forever now.

It must have been a crazy party. There are patches of it that I can't remember...

Last but not least, I dressed up a bit.

Future self: I'm sorry. I'm so, so sorry.

I got the blazer and tie at the most fucking fantastic thrift store in the whole goddamned world. The jacket was $7.99 and the tie was $4.99. Not pictured: my unfortunately purple low-top Converse sneakers.

Anyway! All’s said and done, the season’s over, River Song didn’t get erased from the universe, and for all of my unanswered questions I’m pretty happy with how things turned out. I hope you enjoyed the finale as much as I did!

How to Make “The Wedding of River Song” Invitations

Hello folks!

Well I posted some lovely invitations that I made for my Doctor Who Series 6 Finale Party on Reddit and people seem to really like them! One person asked me to make a tutorial so I am doing it now.

The original picture I took for Reddit

SUPPLIES LIST:

4 Sheets “pearl white” or “glittering white” thick cardstock.

When I say "glittery cardstock" this is what I mean. Thoes extra strips were leftovers that I used to spruce up the invitations.

4 Sheets parchment colored, lightweight card stock

1 Gluestick

1 pair scizzors

1 12-pack letter seal stickers

12 royal blue invitation envelopes (Mine were 5.5 x 3.5–make sure that the size you purchase is mailable!)

1 gold calligraphy paint pen (I used “Writer” brand. I bought it at Target. I couldn’t find a white one or white letter seal stickers anyway).

Recommended additional supplies:

Adobe Indesign (I only have CS2)

A paper cutter

Cost of materials (card stock, envelopes, stickers, pen): ~$15 for enough supplies for 12 invitations.

Ye Olde Paper Cutter

GETTING STARTED:

1) If you want to create your own format go right ahead. If not, here is a link to a .pdf you can print and use, and here is a link to the inDesign file so you can edit it yourself if you’d like. Unfortunately since I’m a durp, I forgot to change the date on the invites I mailed to the redditors who requested them (so they say Sunday, which is when I’m having my party) but the template has the actual date the episode is airing–Saturday.

I chose the planet of Barcelona as the location since we all know that Barcelona is brilliant and I could find coordinates. The coordinates were in the form of a date so I just abbreviated it down so that it looked more official and coordinate-y. Also I figured if you’re printing these yourself, you don’t want some random Texas address.

There weren't enough images here so this is one of the first page results when you image search "Texas."

These templates have a black border to show you where to slice if you’re using a paper cutter. I had to bring the printed invites down to the office that I work in and cut them during my lunch break. The paper cutter really helps a lot.

If you decide to create your own template, I have the following pieces of advice for you:

  • Edwardian Script ITP and Garamond are great fonts in my experience. However my knowledge of typography is at the level where I don’t like to use Times New Roman for fun and I don’t use Comic Sans. Basically, I don’t know a lot about that sort of thing so these are just some decent starting points.
  • Keeping the “cut here” lines really helps a lot.
  • The picture of the TARDIS that I used is a tiny, cropped version of this creation by deviantART’s sarcasticval.

2) After you’ve got a working template designed, print it onto the parchment colored cardstock. I printed four to a page to save paper and fit into the tiny TARDIS-blue envelopes.

3) Trim the parchment colored cardstock along the black/blue guidelines. You want to err just a bit inside of those lines and get as close to the blue invitation borders as you can. I used a pair of scizzors to trim the additional white space.

Trimmin' the paper

4) Trim the sparkly white cardstock at this point. These will also be 4 to a sheet. Trim them just enough to fit inside the envelopes.

5) Use the gluestick on the back of the parchment colored cardstock. Make sure you glue around the edges to keep things from peeling off. Mount the parchment colored cardstock on top of the glittery white cardstock as evenly as possible.

6) OPTIONAL: I used leftover glittery-white cardstock to create borders on the top and bottom of the invites. This made me feel like I got more use out of the money I spent and also it added a bit of texture to the invitations.

This is more or less how each one should end up looking.

7) OPTIONAL: I drew gold stars on the inside of the envelope. I am not great at drawing stars so no pictures of this exist.

8 ) Stick the finished invitations in the envelope, seal them with the seal sticker, and write the number on the back with the calligraphy pen.

9) Address the envelopes. I did not put my return address on most of them but when I did I included a little note on the back, usually something like “The Doctor wanted me to send this to you. He said you’d understand why.” I have atrocious handwriting so I tried to mimic superneat calligraphy. I think this just barely made my writing legible. This part takes a long freaking time to do.

Pens are hard when you have sausages for fingers.

10) Stamp ’em and send!

I hope this has been useful and helpful to you! Let me know how your invites turn out if you make any!

The Boo-Hoo 52

OK. Cute gimmick-y name out of the way.

So I feel a bit guilty saying this but I have a bit of a knee-jerk reaction when the feminist blogosphere critiques what’s going on with comics, as many of them have never picked up a comic in their lives. As a feminist and a consumer of comics/wannabe editor, it irks me when the great questions like “Should Feminists Give Up On Comics” arise. This is because NO, WE SHOULDN’T, ARE YOU INSANE?

Just because some of you guys see comics as a boys-only He Man Woman Hater Club doesn’t mean that the few of us who really care and are hangin’ in here should give up on sequential art! Words and pictures! The sweet eloquence of panels and open space! Because a good deal of the general population doesn’t get what we like. When the otherwise amazing Shelby Knox started critiquing  Wonder Woman’s change in pants because it removed a great symbol of powerful women in comics, I was pretty PO’ed about the resounding agreement she was surrounded by. Who are these people? I thought to myself. Do they even know that Wonder Woman was Ms. Submissive BDSM Subtext for a good deal of her creation?  It seemed to me that Wonder Woman didn’t become a feminist icon until after the TV show, considering that her superpowers could be thwarted if a man tied her up–and considering when this was written and who it was written by, this wasn’t an insightful look at the patriarchy.

I agree that you don’t need to be the target consumer of a medium to critique it. Non-comics-reading-women have pretty good reason to be intimidated by the eerie oversexualization of women in comics. If comics hadn’t got to me early, I’d probably avoid them altogether because I wouldn’t had such wonderful gateway way drugs that made the rest of the BS tolerable. My problem is how are you complaining about established symbolism like a group of the hardcorest neckbeards (which I mean in the most affectionate, non-gendered way)? This isn’t a dig at feminists, over the internet or otherwise. I just hate when the mainstream media has strong yet ignorant opinions about comics.

It's just Ultimate Spiderman! WHAT THE HECK IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE?!

I found this image through random googling but it just feels so right.

So I feel a bit guilty even commenting on the New 52. I’ve never consumed a lot of DC titles. I like the company a lot for what it does and they seem a lot less afraid to stir things up (thank you for Vertigo, Minx, and for actually making TV commercials about comics, DC! That is really fricken cool by the way!).  However, I’ve always been partial to Spiderman and the X-Men, and the glorious majestic imagery of DC’s heroes kind of throws me off. They’re a strange combination of Americana and Roman Mythology and I can’t relate to it.

The problem is that DC’s New 52 seems pretty devoted to keeping me away from it. It’s like they’re actively telling lady comics readers to fuck off at this point. Everywhere you look, you see comments about Harley Quinn, Jugalette, or Starfire’s new career as a walking, talking Real Doll.

She’s just a Sidore looking for her Davecat.

There’s also My First Erotic Fanfiction Catwoman and the slenderization of Amanda Waller.

I can’t say much about these characters. If this reboot happened to Rogue (Edit: Not Rouge. AM I AN EDITOR OR WHAT?!) or Mary Jane I’d be pretty teed off and yelling about it to anybody who would listen. And as a female comics fan, I’m still pretty mad, but I’m going to back away from the implications these changes will have on the characters in question because I haven’t read a lot of their stories. I just felt like I had to say something about this New 52 business because I’m loud about what I care about and comics are what I care about.

On the other side of the fence, there are the opinions of girls who DO read comics, but I keep noticing one theme over and over again in their responses:  the need to distance themselves from girly things. Girly things are frivolous and without value. WE don’t like girly manga! Don’t condescend to us! But in this defense, you’re also devaluing “girl” things and taking their power away.

But that’s another blog post! My fingers hurt now! More about Girl Hate later. The only real conclusion I have to all of this is that it finally seems like a substantial number of people are talking about sexism and the comics industry in earnest, and that’s amazing. Maybe DC had different intentions with the New 52 but at least something productive has come out of all of this.

FINALLY: my roommate wrote this very insightful piece and you should check it out if you’re still looking for something to read.

I’m not saying it’s sexist but…

I was going to write at great length about this but I am not. I’m just going to post some pictures.

This is Star Trek. These are some women.

Number one space booty

Right? Right?

THESE ARE SOME MEN

I like that googling “The Doctor Voyager” still gets me pictures of David Tennant. But also here is the real deal.

Alpha Quadrant's Greatest Dad

Sisko and Dax in the "Trials and Tribbleations" episode of DS9.

Look at Dax, and then look at Sisko. Now I’m not saying that Benjamin Sisko is not a pretty dreamy dude, because he totally is, or that O’Brien is not the most lovable fictional dude in the history of everything ever (save my fictional husband Rory Williams). But. BUT. I have never seen a non-hot woman on Star Trek. Ever. Even Janeway was actually pretty hot. Most of the guys are pretty decent looking, but a lot of them are plausible, normal looking guys, while most of the female characters still manage to be insanely hot, even under layers of plastic/latex/face paint. This actually bothers me quite a bit. There isn’t a Star Fleet lady who doesn’t look like she has a modeling gig on the side–even Doctor Pulaski was quite a looker in her younger days).

I read that they put Sirtis in this skirt because they thought she was too chubby for the pants uniform. THIS IS A CHUBBY STAR TREK WOMAN GUYS.

Actually, yes. I am saying that it is pretty sexist. There’s a lot of critical reaction to old school Star Trek sexism, for good reason. There is a vast, wonderful universe where all of humanity’s problems are solved, all races are reconciled, and the Earth is completely at peace. But at the outset of this wonderful new world, a woman can’t be a starfleet captain. And even after we get female captains (wassup Kirstie Allie gurrrl), it still seems like their entrance exam had more to do with their waist-to-hip ratio than their captaining abilities (from what I hear, this is where I should be saying “wassup Janeway gurrrrl” but I haven’t actually watched much Voyager so I’m holding out judgement for now).

After I watched all of DS9, I went back and watched quite a few Original Series and TNG episodes and I have to say:

Uhura is a secretary. Nurse Chappel is a nurse.

Councelor Troi is useless and sort of bland, and Doctor Crusher is bland bland bland bland bland (except for her fabulous and wonderful hair).

Thankfully, Troi’s SASSY MOM WAS THERE TO RELIEVE MY DISAPPOINTMENT IN THE WOMEN OF THE 24TH CENTURY FOR BEING SO GODDAMNED BLAND.

Goddamn I love her so much

Watching Lwxana be a badass makes me woman up so hard I'm growing an extra pair of ovaries.

There’s a lot to praise about the women of Star Trek. Some of them are pretty cool, and a few of them are even multifaceted, interesting people who happen to be women. I remind myself about that a lot. It does bother me that you can be any kind of man in Star Trek, of any race, species, volume, or opacity (like Dax’s ex-boyfriend, Captain Boday, with the transparent skull). You can be any kind of woman too–as long as you’re thin and busty.

~~HAWT~~

And as long as you show a healthy amount of underboob.

Sell Out

I buy into the whole beauty complex thing while recognizing how stupid it is. This is a great fault on my part.

All of the pretty things on the drug store shelf promise a little bit of relief from the soul-encompassing fear that you, too, could be secretly very ugly and most everyone is too polite to tell you so. So here, smear all of these things on your face and your inner thighs, and they will save you the embarrassment of being an inadequate woman.

Over the past two weeks I have made it my mission to eat a lot cleaner, and work out every day. I also gained four pounds and that completely freaked me out–regardless of whatever legitimate reasons there could be for the weight gain, I had unrealistic expectations for my (hopefully permanent) lifestyle change.

As the not-so-terrible looking daughter of a beautiful woman and the sister of a beautiful young girl, I wanted what they had so desperately. As increasingly satisfied I’ve become with my body over the past few years, sometimes I still feel like that durpy potato of a child as I scour the shelves for something that will make my blotchy skin creamy, or my waist as trim as I could want it to be.

So the gym. The gym is the thing I am doing now, and to be honest at first I started going because I’ve internalized those notions of weight = ambition/determination and wanted to prove to the world, finally for all time, that I am a First Rate Person Who Can Do Anything. But after the first thirty minutes, I remembered why I actually love going to the gym. I suck at pretty much all of the activities, but lifting weights or running for farther and faster than I thought I could makes me feel powerful. And I’m there holding this embarrassingly light weight over my head, grinning to myself and entertaining this very childish notion that I’m going to do something cool like be a space captain saving my crew from very certain danger.

I don’t pretend to be any better at being a grown up than I am at being an athlete.

I’ve never had much use for decorative people, and I’ve never wanted to be one. The idea of getting through life with no scars and no fight annoys me. Why exist just to take up space? Why be if you’re not going to be anything at all? I’m trying to turn into this or anything (though this wouldn’t be all that bad). I’m not interested in being a lady, not all that interested anyway, and the girls that think they will blossom into a muscle fetishist’s dream by lifting a 30-pound barbell every once in a while get on my last nerve. But when buying things, I want to buy pretty things, and I want to buy things that will make me a pretty thing wait what the fuck?

It’s a troubling thing when your feminist views can’t keep you from objectifying yourself.