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Being Apart and Retrouvailles


Retrouvailles [French]

The Happiness of meeting again after a long time

There are lots of ways that people can be separated. Whether “separate” meaning ending of a relationship, friendship, or bond; or meaning separated by distance and time rather than breaking off that relationship, being apart is painful.

I’ve had friends all over the world, some which I’ve been able to see yearly or more and others that I have never seen.

I have friends I’ve grown up with that became the closest and most important people in my life graduate high school and go far away for college. It hurt to be apart from them. It hurt to lose the physical connection we had and to lose the fulfilling meetings we used to have regularly. But we had retrouvailles when we were finally able to get together during summer, winter, and spring breaks.

Separation changes relationships and changes people. Communication and visiting become more special, but also more difficult. Talking to one another can become a chore, or become monotonous because the same questions are always being asked. “How was your day?” “What did you do?” “How is everyone back home?” “How is school?” “What are your classes like?”‘How was work?”. After a while it feels like there is nothing more to say over the phone or via text.

It feels like the distance between the two of you is prying a wedge between you even more than you thought it would.

happinessisexpensive

It’s costly on everyone in many ways. Seeing friends means gas money, spending money for activities, and food. Seeing friends means a plane ticket home or to them, expenses of travel and the like.

Being apart from friends means you might make new friends and lose those friends, or the flux of new friends is whittled down to the ones that you actually like talking to you, rather than the ones which are just convenient to converse with. The difference between a study buddy and a real pal. It costs time and effort to be happy, to stay happy, and to preserve the happiness that you have with those you love most in the world.

The hardest part about these expenses, is making sure they are worth it, and remain worth it.

convenient

Something being worth your time is far from something which is just convenient. Although, convenience does assist in keeping things that are worth your time.

Convenience is having a neighbor that you can barrow things from politely and they have the same relationship with you, but you wouldn’t invite them over for a heart-to-heart about your dying uncle and the struggles of cancer in your family.

The kind of person you invite over for that serious conversation who thinks you are worth their time is the friend that maybe it isn’t all that convenient for them to see you. That’s why it is special when you see each other, because when you do, both of you have planned that chat, that cup of tea or coffee, that special meeting spot, or the favorite seats in your living room. The date’s been on your calendar and it has been something the two of you texted about for weeks. Making sure both could be there around the same time, prepared and with lots to say.

But also with this best friend, you don’t always need something to talk about. Silence can convey what you need it to as well. Because sometimes all you can say is “I’m so glad you are here,” with me because I need you and you are worth it and I love being with you because I love you. 

And you know they are thinking the same thing and don’t need to say it.

coolshit

Harmony in the those moments of retrouvailles.

Gaming Community, The Internet, and Sexism


MEN AND WOMEN AND EVERYONE IN BETWEEN.

Before we talk about these touchy subjects let’s make a helpful list :

1.We are creatures with sexual natures (asexuals you count too <3)

2. We are IMPERFECT

3. We are emotional creatures (except for you, psychopaths, you’re one of the reasons we are in this mess.)

4. We all face consequences for our actions, deservedly or not, equally or not, we face them.

5. Our bodies may have different looking reproductive organs, but we are two sides of one coin (or if you are genderless etc, you are the coin and I love you for being super cool, brave, and unique).

Ok so here are some articles I found while looking at news reports:

Game Reviewer Receives Rape Threats 

Continued article: ’30 Days of Sexism’

If you read these you will notice that this community (the world wide web connecting gamers since 19-whenever) is one of many genders, races, ethnicity, religions, blah blah diversity. Secondly, the gaming community in its wide diversity can be extremely narrow minded and can be extremely problematic in its ways of being offensive, abusive, negative, and even life threatening, (see: Swatting).

In the gaming community, things move fast and things change fast. But one thing that hasn’t changed too much is women being treated like a sexual commodity. I know this sounds strange, but I can prove it to you.

Here are some videos made by the gaming community about things that ACTUALLY happen (some of these even happened to me).

I kid you not, this kind of language and ludeness is extremely common among gamers male and female, but the intent behind them is simply offensive and wrong for both sides.

Because of the popular belief that most gamers are male (54%), the gaming culture has been formed around these chauvinistic stereotypes. This doesn’t tend to bother too many female or male gamers much, though there has been some marketing campaigns and arguments about this. “You can’t have a woman as a main character in a video game, it just won’t succeed.” (Jean-Max Morris 2013:1). This a sentiment that was argued by the producers of Morris’s game, obviously this is untrue. The sex of the main character has very little to do with the success of the game, actually, the more the game creates a community the more successful the game will be. The gaming community is comfortable for most people because all of us want to be there and participate, if we didn’t we would simply stop participating in the culture.

Females being treated badly in gaming communities is simple. Females started out as a minority in gaming culture because of the gender norms and boundaries set up in the way games were geared toward, war, violence, adventures, and monsters. These things at the dawn of gaming were “manly”, “rough and tough”, and everything but sugar and spice and everything nice. Now that gender roles in our society have evened out a little more girls dont feel like war, violence, adventure, and monsters are all that threatening to their femininity or threatening at all to face in a game. But from what I’ve seen is that the community of gamers was established on male virtues. Slogans like “Bro’s before  hoes”, “you game like a girl”, and “make me a sandwich” all stem from guys being the dominating figures of the gaming community.

Since males have dominated gaming for so long, girls who have eased their way into the community usually keep a low profile, 47% is a lot, but still women openly saying they are women on their profile or in game can be rare. This is because of threats like what Alanah Pearce received in the comments on her game review videos. For me, I’ve been online gaming in both the Xbox live and PC gaming (League of Legends mostly) communities for years, and I have actually met guys and girls online that I am still friends with after gaming since 2012. There is hope for the community to revive itself, but when environments are toxified by people with no actual understanding of what their words are doing, change can’t happen.

The best way to explain gaming culture is to experience it, but not everyone is interested or accustomed to the way gamers communicate and relate to one another. That is why most people write gamers off as uneducated and not very sensitive, when the opposite is true, gamers have feelings too we just express ourselves very differently. “Young people will always find new ways to represent their cultural concerns, in ways that inevitably alienate the previous generation. Such linguistic creativity as 1337 5p34K, characterized by adaptation and modification, has evolved from the game geek’s need to express and communicate within a supportive community of like-minded participants.”(Blashki and Nichol 2005:85) What we lack is support usually, because the gaming community is very competitive and raunchy. We like the raunchiness to a point though. Things cross lines, and our ways of communicating can be taken to whole other levels of bad. Swearing is normal, insulting people randomly is normal, threatening to rape, abuse, assault, swat, etc. is not normal or legal.

If ya liked it, then ya shoulda puta ring on it!


I wrote in my thought journal last night, and saw a paragraph i wrote about drawing an engagement ring with a pen on my finger in loving memory of my pathetically crushed thumb ring, that is now on wearable because it is malformed. I got it at Walmart, so I guess it was destined to be hurt.

I went Harajuku this morning. Orange and pink bloomers and all. I even added to my giant pony-tails a bunch of bows and clips. I look really rediculous but I like it. YES I DO! (only rockin roll) but I like it.

Well it was my x-best friends birthday. The reason I say x is because she refuses to let me come to her birthday party. Ha. Should I care? She says that she’ll bring me and my two other besties to the mall with her….I wonder how that will turn out. I gave her a really awesome card. I couldn’t even tell if she read it or just opened it up and threw it away. That was $3!! What a waste.

I just mailed my friend a card that was wicked totally awesome!!! With a cute penguin and all. Me like penguin hugs.

This morning, at 12:23 AM I was talking to my cyber brother Dean. He finally got a profile picture that suits him. I was very proud. We creeped on each other for a half an hour. Going back and forth like so: “I see you through your window.” -Dean “In my navy jumper?” -me “It looks good on you” -dean “I’m sure. I see you through your window.” -me  “What am i wearing?” Dean “A t-shirt and jeans.” -Me. “Nope.” dean. “Pj’s?” -Me. “I’m all natural underwear!” Dean…. “I wish i could say the same thing you said to my jumper, but i just cant.” -me. “It really does suit you though.” Dean. “Yeah i have to go to bed now..” Me.”Well Good night sister.” Dean. “Good night brother.” -me.

And thats how it all went down.

I’m going to send this link to him now. He’s been exposed! (evil laughter)