Chicago Pride Parade, 2015

2015pride_01Today was my first Pride Parade in nine or ten years, and while I’m a fan of crowds in the same way the Wicked Witch of the West is a fan of Dasani, I’m glad I persuaded myself to go. Knowing that there are LGBTQ supporters out there is one thing, but actually being surrounded by a giant cheering mass of them is something else entirely. The energy of the crowd was fantastic, and seeing so many groups and organizations coming out in support of LGBTQ people was wonderful and actually rather moving. I may have had to blink away tears a few times, primarily because I’m a big ole mushy pile of sentimental mush. <3 Continue reading

Which is full of love for Roger Radcliffe

Alas, my jury duty illness is still going strong, so I spent the majority of today convalescing at home with cat, blanket, and television.

Some of the things I did today, for anyone in desperate need of knowing:

1. I watched 101 Dalmatians (the 1961 animated version) twice. And discovered that I’m strangely attracted to Roger.

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Look at him, though. He’s fabulous. <3

It was an old VHS copy from 1992, and I very much enjoyed the little advertisement at the end informing me of a brand new Disney film apparently entitled, “Aladdin.” I doubt it’ll make any money, though.

2. I discovered that the 1997 Peanuts special “It Was My Best Birthday Ever, Charlie Brown” may actually be a top contender for “worst Peanuts special ever,” and yes, I’m including that one about the Flashbeagle when I say that.

It starts off with ten solid minutes of Linus rollerblading, followed by five minutes or so of awkward ’90s dancing, followed by about 45 seconds of Charlie Brown and Sally having actual dialogue, followed by another lengthy session of rollerblading (including some stunts that I suspect an eight-year-old has no business trying). There’s some semblance of a story after that (and a surprisingly lovely song), but there’s also a rather bizarre dissertation on the medicinal properties of various flowers in the midst of it, because if there’s anything kids are interested in, it’s botany. Continue reading

In which I totally keep my promise

It appears as if there’s one more cause for celebration today:

This blog has now officially reached 100 followers!

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(Yeesh, I’m running out of happy/excited gifs.)

And since this historic event has now occurred, I’m afraid I have no choice but to make good on my earlier promise to share the  never-before-seen-by-anyone-because-it’s-somewhat-embarrassing photo of myself in drag from Halloween two years ago!

So. Prepare yourselves, friends, and then venture below. Continue reading

In which I do my civic duty (and nearly get hypothermia)

This week was a historic one for me, friends. After years of evading it due to being out of the country or in another state, it finally happened: I was summoned for jury duty, and I actually had to go.

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It wasn’t anywhere near as bad as it could’ve been, and I’m glad to have had the opportunity to learn more about our justice system (the primary lesson being that it’s slower than an arthritic snail), but even so, the whole experience was still something of a…well, trial.

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Fighting For the Galaxy: Chapter 8!

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Welcome back to Fighting For the Galaxy Fridays,  actually on a Friday for once! Wow!

In our last installment of hilariously bad pseudo-sci-fi, Captain Torel Abrigio charged off to the dangerous planet Sffonia in search of the shot-five-times-but-surprisingly-mobile Jessica, while T.J. cunningly blamed her knowledge of the Sffon codes on resident bad guy and turncoat Steve Phelps. As a reward for her information, the Sffon decided not to execute her, and instead are sending her off to be a human slave at some rich dude’s house, because sure, that sounds plausible.

Will T.J. be able to escape before she’s forced to don a ridiculously skimpy uniform and give stirring speeches about equality to her captors’ children? Will Abrigio somehow spot Jessica in minutes despite the fact that she could literally be anywhere on the entire planet of Sffonia? And will Mark actually kill someone by throwing a fork at them because he saw it in a movie once? (Answer: Yes. Yes, he will.)

Read on to find out the answers to these and more burning questions..!

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In which I am a crotchety old lady

A few bits of news:

1. The site header has finally been redone!

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The new header features: (a) a more up-to-date photo of The Author (as well as The Author’s Hair), (b) pictures that are actually lined up properly, and (c) some of The Author’s bad art (and one piece of good art by someone who is not The Author). Hooray!

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For those unfamiliar with the subjects of the drawings seen here, they’re all characters from Chosen. Left-to-right, we see Mr. Defrin, Kaine, Nicholas, Darek, and (suspiciously well-drawn) Hema.

2. Speaking of Chosen, for anyone who didn’t get the chance to read the sneak peak of the first few chapters, you can still do so here:

https://tjbaer.com/2015/06/12/a-sneak-peak-at-chosen-book-i/

For the uninitiated, Chosen is the first volume of my upcoming LGBT fantasy series, which I mention on this blog approximately every .25 seconds. I’ve actually made some changes to the first few chapters over the last few days, as well as adding in some new material to the “sneak peak” post above, so even if you’ve already had a look at it, now might be a good time to go have one more. Ya know. If you want to.

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3. For those who are unaware, the Chicago Blackhawks recently won the Stanley Cup, which is apparently kind of a big deal. To celebrate, they had a parade, a huge stadium event, and a general all-day avalanche of merrymaking downtown today.

As one of the few people in Chicago who doesn’t give any damns at all about professional sports, I found myself surrounded for much of the day by happy, chattering masses of people in Blackhawks jerseys, who got progressively happier, louder, and drunker as the day went on.

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Artist’s rendering. Strange how so many Blackhawks fans seem to be tiny and bald.

I’m thrilled that so many people were so very happy today, but as I’m a crotchety old lady who dislikes crowds, noise, youngins, and  especially crowds of noisy youngins, today was something of an exercise in self-control. And, I’m pleased to say, I managed to get through the entire day without once waving my cane over my head and shouting for everyone to keep it down / keep off my lawn, so I consider it a victory.

Incidentally, I seem to have a unique combination of traits that make me the absolute antithesis of other Chicagoans: I don’t care about sports, I prefer thin-crust pizza, and I always, always put ketchup on hot dogs (an offense punishable by death within the Chicago city limits).

What can I say? I’m just a rebel. A crotchety old lady rebel.

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Seen above: Me.


 

Edit: Apparently, this marks my 100th post on this blog! Wow and hooray and woot!

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I suggest we celebrate by having everyone immediately go and mail me one hundred $1 bills. Or, because I am exceptionally kindhearted, I will also accept $100 in any denomination of your choice. <3

In which I break up with Japan

Shortly after writing my recent post about the couture-related challenges of being gender fluid, The Author vs. Clothing, I was inspired to go to the thrift store and pick up some dirt-cheap articles of clothing to suit my less feminine days, which turned out to be a very good decision.

And I also did one more thing.

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I finally cut my hair.

Just to be clear, I didn’t get my hair cut – I cut it my damn self, armed with nothing but dull scissors, my bathroom mirror, and the knowledge that I can’t even cut paper in a straight line. And yeah, it was as much of a disaster as you’re probably imagining.

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But really, it’s Pride Month, so who wants a perfectly straight haircut anyway? Continue reading

Thoughts on Star Trek: The Original Series

So, as I mentioned before, I’ve recently been working my way through Star Trek: The Original Series, which despite my all-around nerdiness and love of sci-fi, I’d somehow never seen before.

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I know. Madness.

I’ve been very much enjoying the series (when not raging about its hilariously awful treatment of women), and have been compiling my thoughts and reactions while working my way from episode to episode. I offer them to you now, because otherwise, I have no idea what to post about.

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Let’s boldly go…to my random comments on a classic science fiction series full of bad props, hilarious overacting, and rampant sexism. ENGAGE!

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