Tuesday, August 16, 2016

[Rambling thoughts] Feminism - the two busses.

There seems to be a general consensus that feminism is about taking things away from men, about putting them in a lesser position. (I guess where women are now even if they won't admit it?) That's hardly accurate and I'll probably not be the first or last person to say so.
Imagine, if you will, that there's two busses. One bus has soft cloth seats, with padding. This bus has free wifi, a monthly discount plan, air conditioning, and customized stops. Sure, it sometimes breaks down, or gets a flat tire, but it, over all, is a pretty nice bus.  The other bus is one of those old and rattly vehicles that has windows that barely opens, cracked plastic seating, and you have to pay a separate fare for it and the train. Needless to say, you'd want on the first bus, right? But what if we could make BOTH busses that awesome? That's what feminism is about. It's not about taking things from anyone, or crowding everyone in and restricting resources, it's about there being the same treatment across the board.

The trouble comes, of course, when capitalism raises it's ugly head. The status quo makes money. That old bus costs less to run and they can get away with running it, it's just the women's bus, after all. Feminists say "Oi, no, everyone gets air conditioning when it's 109F outside thankyouverymuch."

Saturday, June 4, 2016

[Personal Rant] My problem with 'Hail Hydra'

    Ward: "I was on a mission. It wasn't personal."
    Skye: "It wasn't… you did not just say that! It wasn't personal?!"
    Ward: "Skye, listen to me."
    Skye: "God, you might actually believe that. You…that is… that is the twisted logic that they teach you when you sign up to be a Nazi."
    Ward: "Stop. Wait. I'm not a Nazi."
    Skye: "Yes, you are. That is exactly what you are. It's in the S.H.I.E.L.D. handbook, chapter one. The Red Skull—founder of HYDRA—was a big fat freakin' Nazi."
    Ward: "That has nothing to do with today."
    Skye: "You know, you always had that Hitler Youth look to you, so it's really not that surprising."
    -Ward and Skye discuss his loyalties, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D

I wasn't going to post this. I wasn't going to continue to the rock the boat, but friend Dan made a post about how people can P*(&#! off about what he posts on HIS Facebook wall and I'm like.. y'know, what, damn straight! (Disclaimer : Dan used nicer terminology.) If I have something to say - I'm gonna say it. And if you don't like it, piss off. There's the door. I'll pretend to miss you when you leave. That's not to say I don't mind healthy discourse, but when it's just one person standing on the shoulders of privilege telling people to suck it up because it's "just whatever" .. I'm going to give them the middle finger.

So. A Facebook friend PM'd me to ask why I had a problem with the phrase Hail Hydra. (No, it wasn't who you may think it was.) In fact, they said 'You're not a Jew, why do you care?'  (This person is now blocked, btw). There's just so many things wrong with that statement and that question. Why do I have to be Jewish (or Romani, or any other minority the Nazis persecuted) to care about the horrors done to millions of people. (Yes white supremacists, bad news, they are in fact people.) Why do I have to be Jewish (or a PoC, or..) to care about the atrocities committed being turned into jokes and meme's? I don't think I have to be.

My issue with 'Hail Hydra' is the same as my issue with rape jokes. You're taking something that destroyed lives (and in this case, generations of families) and making light of it. You're dismissing the pain, the suffering, the horror endured, to make a joke, to gain some attention or to make a buck. It's no coincidence that Hydra was created by two Jewish men as a part of the Nazi army. It's no coincidence that 'Hail Hydra' is so similar to 'Hail Hitler.' When you remove the seriousness of an attrocity committed against other humans, it makes it seem like a less serious crime. (Sorry - 'It's not rape if you yell surprise first!' never was, and never will be, funny.)

So no, when it comes to that kind of 'humour' that is at the expense of the victims and those that suffered, you will find I will not 'lighten up.' I will not 'sit down and shut up' and I will not let people forget history to repeat it. If you want to think a thinly veiled 'Hail Hitler' is amusing, you go right ahead.. and I'll go right ahead thinking you're a spoiled, closed minded, bigot.

Friday, February 19, 2016

[WoW Post] Leensa's Guide to Holy Pally Healing.

For lack of a better place to put this - I shove it here.

Most of what I learned in healing, I learned playing a druid in Everquest and so every healer I've played since, I've based off that. So it's a mix of muscle memory and how an Everquest druid works. This is probably not the most efficient method of playing a holy paladin in World of Warcraft, but it works for me!

Above you can see my UI. It's a pretty standard UI. Yaks will mock it, but it works for me.

Top left is me. Aren't I a pretty little blood elf? (Snort.)

On the central left is the standard, built-in, raid UI. There are healing UI add-ons that enable mouse-over function so you can skip over the making of macros and stuff to do what I do, I just couldn't be arsed to learn them. They'd replace that UI.

Bottom left is the in game standard chat box. Ooo. Ahhh. Ohhh.

Bottom center is my hotkeys. I have them shrunk to 90% UI standard via the Dominos add-on. That's on top of my UI being shrunk via interface to 90%.

Top right is my chat box. All communication channels and emotes go up there so I'm not searching through spam for the important stuff. General chat often gets moved out of there while I'm raiding since people can be chatty and distracting when I'm trying to not dump green fel on top of the purple. (Apparently your raid mates get upset when you blow them all up.) This is a left over from EQ where I had something like 8 chat windows.

Center right is the hotkeys I never need to press in any particular hurry but am too lazy to dig up every time I want to use them.

All very exciting right?

The macros I use to heal people (etc) on mouse over are :

#showtooltip Flash of Light
/use [@mouseover,help,nodead][help,nodead][@Leensa] Flash of Light

#showtooltip Holy Light
/use [@mouseover,help,nodead][help,nodead][@Leensa] Holy Light

#showtooltip Eternal Flame
/use [@mouseover,help,nodead][help,nodead][@Leensa] Eternal Flame

#showtooltip Holy Shock
/use [@mouseover,help,nodead][help,nodead][@Leensa] Holy Shock

#showtooltip Holy Radiance
/use [@mouseover,help,nodead][help,nodead][@Leensa] Holy Radiance

#showtooltip Cleanse
/use [@mouseover,help,nodead][help,nodead][@Leensa] Cleanse

#showtooltip Lay on Hands
/use [@mouseover,help,nodead][help,nodead][@Leensa] Lay on Hands

#showtooltip Hand of Sacrifice
/use [@mouseover,help,nodead][help,nodead][@Leensa] Hand of Sacrifice

#showtooltip Hand of Protection
/use [@mouseover,help,nodead][help,nodead][@Leensa] Hand of Protection

#showtooltip Hand of Freedom
/use [@mouseover,help,nodead][help,nodead][@Leensa] Hand of Freedom

#showtooltip Redemption
/use [@mouseover,help,nodead][help,nodead][@Leensa] Redemption

#showtooltip Beacon of Light
/use [@mouseover,help,nodead][help,nodead][@Leensa] Beacon of Light

#showtooltip Beacon of Faith
/use [@mouseover,help,nodead][help,nodead][@Leensa] Beacon of Faith
Change "Leensa" to your character's name if you copy them. These let you just move your mouse to the person you want to heal (or whatever.) and hit the relevant hotkey. I guess this reveals to Crunch I'm not ACTUALLY a full time clicker.

I'm told there's weirdos that change their talents around based on fights for more efficent healing. As I'm incredibly lazy, I don't do this. My talents are as follows :

So when to use what? There's a certain amount of "Spellflash says use this" that I'll use. Or if I'm being lazy I'll spam a group heal instead of using Holy Light. But the gist is :

Holy Light is your base spell. When in doubt, use this.

Bacon both tanks. (The Beacon of Faith talent gives you a second bacon.)

Cast Holy Light on both tanks during pre-pull to give them an absorption shield. (I mostly remember to do this.)

I generally heal peeps with Eternal Flame if it's up, Holy Light if it's not, when they get between 90 and 95 with a tank, then healer, then DPS priority. This'll top the person up and give them an absorption shield. If they hit 50 percent, I'll use Holy Shock, or Flash of Light if Holy Shock is down.

If a bunch of people are hurting, I'll fire off a Holy Prism if it's up. If half the raid looks like it's pain, I'll cast Light of Dawn or Holy Radiance if Light of Dawn is down.

I will use Lay on Hands if I notice someone is about to splatter across the landscape. Obviously I give tanks and healers the preference if I have to choose between two, but I'll throw it on just about anyone. (Even hunters.)

Avenging Wrath ("Give me pretty wings!") I'll use when the big ugly is doing his powerful stuff OR when a bunch of people are dropping rapidly.  I typically follow up with a bunch of Light of Dawn or Holy Radiances.

Devotion Aura I'll use when the raid leader tells me to (e.g. "First pounding, devo.") or when a majority of the raid hits about 50% and I need to buy time. A lot of the time I end up overkilling and using Avenging Wrath and Devotion Aura at the same time.

I will Hand of Sacrifice a tank when they hit fifty percent, especially if they're dropping fast.

I am trying, now, to Hand of Protection, my fellow healers if they're getting beat up. I'll also HoP random DPS during trash if they're being cocky about their DPS.

And finally Divine Shield (Bubble) when shit is going sideways and I am getting beat up big time.

When I have absolutely nothing else to do, I will throw Denounce at the big bad or his adds, along with a Fist of Justice on any mobs looking my way.

Yaks once gave the advice of 'Always be casting' and it is true! There's ALWAYS something you can be doing! Unless you're ret - then you're just waiting for cool downs.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

How I spent my 40th birthday.

No secret to the masses that I have chronic health issues. One of the ones that has been getting steadily worse over the years is digestive issues. I'd finally gotten a diagnosis and was going to be O.K. (Ha.)  Sunday I'd been sick, but cream in my coffee was the likely culprit. Monday I was okay. Tuesday I was feeling gross but managed to some walking on the treadmill. Wednesday, my 40th birthday, I woke up bright eyed and bushy tailed. (So to speak.)
I had guilt tripped my introverted family into being seen in public with me. They'd agreed to a dinner. My brother had even agreed to chauffeur so I could have a drink with dinner. I had plots (and plans) to rope one of my friends into getting a family picture for us. I had gathered as many friends who were able to be out on a Wednesday night. Far too many of my friends have early morning jobs. (What are they thinking?!)
My stomach started grumbling it's complaints around four. I was to leave to drive to my brothers in less than an hour. I decided it was just anxiety about seeing so many people and eating somewhere new(ish).  Denial is the first step, right?
By five, I told my stomach to shut up it's complaints and I headed out the door. It was crampy, but I figured, eh, I can push through. I'd managed math class with worse as a teen! (This is somehow relevant, brain?) Deep breathing helped. I was alright till I made it across the Sumas canals. (About fifteen minutes from home for the foreigners.)  That is about when I had to pull over and evacuate everything I'd ever eaten.
Let me tell you, if you want to meet a lot of nice people, pull over to the side of the highway and start chucking your cookies. I met a nice couple from Montana who offered to let me have a lie down in their R.V. I met a nice lady from Abbotsford who offered to take me to call an ambulance. I met a very nice RCMP who asked me all sorts of questions.
No, I hadn't been drinking. No, I hadn't done any drugs. No, I don't need to go to the hospital, I explained. Explaining that I had a liver condition that caused nausea and IBS symptoms got me the "You sure you're not a drunk?" look. But, suspicion of cause aside, she was a very nice Mountie. She offered to drive me to the hospital. I said I didn't want to puke in her cruiser. She said I wouldn't be the first. (Ew.) I was also concerned about abandoning my car by the side of the highway. Eventually we negotiated to she would follow me home.  (I didn't get to keep her.)
Before I started my car, I got to text my brother and ask him to let everyone know I wouldn't make my own party. As he was on his way home from work, there was limited amounts he could do. I could only hope we'd catch the majority. 
I got home. It wasn't a fun drive. Lady Mountie made sure I got in the door okay. I spent the majority of the evening being incredibly sick, trying to put up a brave face on social media and appreciating what wonderfully understanding and forgiving friends I have.
I've had to abandon friends early, I've had to cancel plans on short notice, I've had to do all sorts of socially frowned upon things due to illness or pain. Being chronically ill just sucks and don't let anyone ever try to convince you otherwise.

Same time next year, right friends and family? I'll try to be at my own party this time.

Friday, July 25, 2014

[Personal Ramble] Cancer attacks the nice gene.

Sometimes I think Cancer looks for the nice gene.

I recently lost another friend to cancer, bringing the count up to four. I'm lucky, that count is much lower than some people's. All of the people I lost, however, were wonderful people. They were givers, they wanted to help others, they wanted to save lost animals, they wanted to help up the fallen. They were a shoulder to lean on, an ear to cry to, and often very good voices of wisdom. When you go to them to offer them a shoulder in return they just smiled and said they'd rather concentrate on something not their own problems and try to help you with yours.

I have chronic pain (pain that never goes away), I have mobility issues, I have brain issues, but none of them are likely to kill me any time soon. I have three friends who are in remission but never quite know and two friends deep in treatment who I'm very scared for. Again, all of them are very nice and wonderful people. They were wonderful before the cancer and have become even more so during the fight. When I was looking for a ride to/from the hospital for my surgery one of those in chemo friends offered to drive an hour and a half each way to help me out, offered to stay on my ridiculously uncomfortable futon to watch me for the night, and then go home. That's above and beyond. I had another friend, in remission, offer to drive further to do similar.

Obviously, I have some pretty awesome friends.

I'm selfish. I don't want to be worrying about my friends. I don't want them to be sick. They don't deserve to be sick. They deserve to healthy, happy, bouncy, friendly, generous, caring individuals who get to live without tubes and tests.

But why does cancer attack them?  I can only figure it looks for people with the nice gene and goes for them first.

Friday, July 11, 2014

[Personal Ramble] Empathy.

I can tell you the exact day I learned empathy. I was in the shower trying to wash my hair. I had recently smashed my elbow into chunks in an attempt to roller blade. I couldn't do it, my elbow just wouldn't work so I couldn't wash my my hair. Previous to this, I'd just worked through the pain, put on a stiff upper lip, sucked it up, and a whole host of other phrases that meant 'don't be a wimp, you could do it if you really wanted to.' Well, I really wanted to wash my hair, but it wasn't happening. My body just wasn't cooperating with me, I physically could not wash my hair. My Mum must have heard me crying or just fumbling because she knocked on the door and asked if I needed help and I said yes. She ended up washing my hair for me. I think what I most remember is that my RN mother didn't ask if I *wanted* help, but did I *need* help. There's a significant difference.

To this day the phrase 'suck it up' screams of a lack of empathy to me. The 'I don't want to deal with your problems, so just make your problems go away' attitude. Yes, sure, a lot of times someone can just push through and work through the problem and do it. But, what is wrong with them working around the problem, doing it a different way? Why should someone deal with true distress rather than finding another route? And what if they can't suck it up to make it go away?

I was recently told by a friend that I CHOSE this life. She never did explain how I chose to fark up my back, be bipolar or get fibromyalgia amongst a host of other problems, but apparently I'm a lay about who mooches off the face of society. I guess I should suck it up.

It never ceases to amaze me the attitudes when it comes to welfare and disability. In most people's mind they seem to think welfare is a trip to easy street. I haven't looked at the process in the last ten years, but it was ridiculously hard back then, I doubt it's gotten any easier under our conservative "BC Liberal Party." Disability is even harder to get. People seem to think that once you get your cheque you're happy to sit on your ass and never work again. I can't speak for anyone else, but I get bored, I get restless, I start bouncing off the walls. I get depressed. And I go find work, I work for a while and I fail at it. My last on the job attempt I had an orthosurgeon tell me to stop or I'd be having more back surgery before I'm 40. ("I'm 38." "Exactly.") Online attempts go even worse. But I should suck it up, right? I should be able to just magically make my body and mind work right and enable me to be a productive member of society.

As much as I wish people without empathy could understand that you can't just magically make your body work when it betrays you, I'm also kind of happy they can't understand. It means they haven't had the trauma or tragedy that would bring the understanding. It means they've always been able to "suck it up" and plow through.  The other thing they never seem to consider is just because one person works one way and can work past x to do y, it doesn't mean another can. If all of our bodies worked the same way, if we all could do everything if we just wanted to and worked on it, we'd all be throwing 100 mp/h fast balls in the MLB.

And of course, by posting this, I'm sure I'm just adding to my "drama whore" reputation. But that's okay, my fellow sufferers can relate and we all know we're not alone and would help wash each others hair as necessary.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

[Personal Rant] Me and Education.

I loved my teachers - they were awesome people, but yeah.

When we came to Canada, the Edmonton Public School System insisted my brother and I be put in with our age groups rather than tested to see where we were educationally. I sat on my ass and didn't learn a dang thing for over two years. I was bored, I was restless, I had no interest in doing work I already knew how to do.

By the time I hit high school (grades eight through twelve) I'd managed to learn to fake my way through the stuff I could care less about or already knew so I could just sit and read instead. My attitude was, if I bring home a 96%, I get a 'What happened to the other 4%?' so what's the difference between that and a 'What happened to the other 20%'? I may as well read and enjoy myself.

I learned to do the absolute bare minimum of the crap to get to the good stuff. I excelled at anything that involved reading or writing since those were my interests, I bombed at anything that required dry reading and spewing forth back what I'd read. Why should I write out the seven different types of glaciers when you can just look in a book? If I were writing a report on Archduke Ferdinand, I would look up the dates before I published the report, it's been well established, so why should I remember them? It was an exercise in recitation, not learning, to me. That the government said I HAD to learn certain things seemed silly. I enjoyed courses like Business Education and Consumer Education that taught us practical use of money, how to buy a car, how to shop for real estate, practical every day things we would use. Things that you can't pick up in a book.

By the time I hit grade 10, I was skipping classes. I was BORED. They didn't challenge me. I learned more online than I ever did in school. I learned more at the library. I learned more from my older than me friends. I learned more from observation of people. I took courses early. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn't. Trying to do grade 11 physics with only the knowledge of grade 9 math is a no go. I tried it again when I was just starting to learn grade 10 math. But the class, both times, very quickly left me behind.  The other students already learned things like formulas and how to manipulate them while I was struggling with trying to memorize all the various variations of the formulas. Half the time I wasn't told all the variations because it was assumed I already knew how to find them on my own. It hit my teen age ego pretty hard that I couldn't do this, it didn't even occur to me I couldn't do it because I didn't have the prerequisite knowledge, I just thought it was because I wasn't a science or math person. To this day I still don't associate myself with the ability to do anything math related. I can do algebra in my head, but I'm not a math person. I saw my brother seemingly sailing through the maths and sciences and getting the praise of my parents while I was getting told I wasn't trying hard enough. In most cases, that'd have been true, but in this case, I was trying to climb a mountain with no rope.

I skipped more and more classes through grade 11 and grade 12. I got asked 'why' a lot, but how do you tell your teachers that you're bored? How do you confide anything in parents when your parents just turn around to the teachers and say "She says she's BORED." which just insults the teachers. I didn't want to insult my teachers, I liked my teachers. I knew if I had a problem I could identify or they could fix, they'd be there for me. I, however, also knew that they were trapped by the system. They had to teach for the provincial testing at the end of the semester. They had to have us know certain things in certain ways by a certain time. They had 32 - 35 students per class to teach this to.

They were trying their best for me, but I'd become so disconnected and so out of caring by that point, there wasn't much they could do. It didn't help hearing "Your brother could.." or "Your brother scored.."  Dave is a wonderful, generous, kind, and fantastic big brother. He's a very intelligent, very quick witted, and very driven individual. He retains knowledge like a sponge does water. I'm a lot like my brother, but I don't have his drive and stubbornness for completing things. If I don't see a point to something, I just won't do it. Self-defeating, but there it is. I didn't see the point in counting thirty-seven beans the book just told us there were thirty-seven of, so I wouldn't count and would get a crappy grade.

It was never the fault of the teachers. They tried. In my years in school I met only a few teachers I actively disliked, and that's because they didn't listen. Hindsight tells me they were burned out by the demands and the system and were now just going through the motions. Of course, they may also have been frustrated with the strange child/teen who did the bare minimum to get a C+ or B , who could have achieved much better grades but had far more interest in computers than already long established facts. But they tried.