So, full disclosure about me: I have been a Nancy Drew fan for a very, very long time. It was a big part of my formative years, and I’ve reread the books multiple times in my adult life and continue to enjoy them very much. So, naturally, when I heard that the network that brought us the insanity that is Riverdale was coming out with a dark Nancy Drew reboot, I was pretty sure it was going to be… Well. “Hot garbage” was the first term that came to mind, quite honestly.

This past Friday, however, I actually checked out said series, and I discovered to my great surprise that it is not garbage of any temperature. It is, in fact, a rather awesome and compelling show that I am now low-key obsessed with, because I binge-watched the entire series over on the CW site and endured endless prescription drug commercials in order to see how it all panned out.

And hoo boy, did it not disappoint. It’s a CW show, so you do of course have a few standards that had to be included: (a) characters making out while sexy and/or angsty pop songs play loudly in the background, (b) everyone in the cast being excessively and illogically attractive, and (c) teen heartthrobs from the ’90s now being cast as parents to these excessively and illogically attractive young folk.

But those things aside, the CW’s Nancy Drew is a freaking delight. The mystery is fascinating and multifaceted and actually turned out in a way I did not at all suspect (always a good thing), and what’s more, it actually made sense. The show does have its more Riverdale-esque bananas moments, but for the most part, it’s pretty grounded in the world it inhabits. What happens might be weird, but it fits the weirdness they’ve established for this world, and I’m down with that.

I also have to say that there is a queer element to the show that I was not expecting and was very much delighted by.

Anyway, I took some notes while watching the show, and I would now like to share those notes on the off chance that someone aside from myself may find them entertaining. I also must say that these notes of course include spoilers, so proceed with caution if you don’t wish to be spoiled.

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Posted by: T.J. Baer | May 25, 2020

In which gay teens fight monsters

I’d hoped to get some writing done today, and shockingly, I did! :O

…but not on the project I was actually hoping to work on. Ah, well. :P I’d been hoping to add to my forever-WIP and gay fantasy epic (TM), Chosen, but instead I unearthed a long-ago begun story and added a few chapters to it.

Said story is tentatively entitled Guardians, and it’s a fun little YA story about teens fighting monsters and trying to stop the end of the world, because that plot hasn’t been done before.

The story, though, is surprisingly engaging, and I can say that because I started writing it long enough ago that it no longer feels like something I wrote. :P The main character, Alisha, is a kickass seventeen-year-old with frizzy hair and a talent for fighting monsters and keeping her narcissistic younger brother out of trouble. Her mother fought monsters back when she was a teenager but now is Retired, and her dad is a researcher who likes punning, Doctor Who, and annoying his children in the most loving way possible.

I have, of course, felt obliged to put as much gay into the story as possible, so Alisha’s older sister has a girlfriend, her brother’s love interest is an awesome trans girl, and Alisha has definite chemistry with nemesis and fellow teen monster-hunter, Belladonna.

Anyway, here’s a quick excerpt from a draft of a scene when Alisha visits Belladonna’s excessively nice house in search of info about this whole ‘end of the world’ thing:

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Posted by: T.J. Baer | May 22, 2020

How could I sneak with this fine physique?

Greetings, friends. Greetings and hello and hello and also greetings.

I find myself with a bit of time to spare this evening, so I thought it was about time I posted an update. So to all those readers who have been weeping bitter tears into their pillows at night wondering when I would return, you may now rest easy. Your prayers have been answered.

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Posted by: T.J. Baer | April 30, 2020

A scenario entirely unconnected to current events

Firefighters: So, we’ve been making some progress on putting out the fire, but as you can see, there’s still a lot of work left to do.

People: Oh, yeah, it looks so much better! Okay, you can stop now.

Firefighters: But…there’s…still fire?

People: Nah, I think we’re heading in the right direction. Just stop what you’re doing and we’re sure it’ll be fine. We’re going to go back inside now, k?

Firefighters: The building is on FIRE.

People: Yeah, but we’re tired of standing out here safely away from something that could kill us, so we think we’d rather just go back inside and get our lives back to normal.

Firefighters: THE BUILDING IS ON FIRE. You can’t go back to your normal lives when the whole place is burning down around you. And if it keeps burning, other buildings might catch on fire, too, and burn down the whole city.

People: This is America, dammit, and that means we have the right to a life of freedom in a burning building if that is what we choose! USA! USA! USA!

Firefighters: ….

Posted by: T.J. Baer | January 20, 2020

SO YOU WANT TO BE A VEGAN… (Part 2: Calcium)

Hello, friends. You may remember me from such posts as SO YOU WANT TO BE A VEGAN… (Part 1) and Nutritiony Things I Have Learned # 1 (Protein). Or perhaps this is your first visit to my weird little blog, in which I case, welcome.

In today’s installment of SO YOU WANT TO BE A VEGAN, we’ll be looking at some common myths about veganism, because there are about 735,000 of them, and we should probably make a start on that. Today’s myth concerns calcium, and why these wacky vegans refuse to get it from cow’s milk like everybody else.

So whether you’re vegan, vegetarian, or frowning at your screen with a piece of bacon hanging out of your mouth, venture below for more information on those wild plant-loving scamps, The Vegans. *cue ’80s-sitcom-style theme song* Read More…

Posted by: T.J. Baer | January 11, 2020

SO YOU WANT TO BE A VEGAN… (Part 1)

So, you want to be a vegan! Or, more likely, you don’t. Hey, that’s all right. Thassokay. No judgment here. We cool.

But even if you don’t want to be a vegan, maybe you have some questions or want to know a little bit about these mysterious kale-eating creatures, so hey, let’s start with a few basics. Read More…

TJ, where have you been? Our lives are empty and meaningless without you! WHY, WHY HAVE YOU FORSAKEN US?

I hear your cries, dear readers, and for that reason I have returned. You may rest easy now that your source of incoherent rambles about veganism, writing, and queer culture is back, and you no longer need cry into your pillow at 3 AM, staring up at the moon and wondering if I, too, am staring up at that very same moon.

As you can see, the time away has not done much to improve my general state of weirdness. Read More…

Posted by: T.J. Baer | June 21, 2019

Memoir: June 12, 2009

A short memoir piece of mine about the challenges of being LGBTQ+ in Japan is being featured on the Past-Ten website, an excellent web journal that asks the question, “Where were you on this day ten years ago?” If you feel in need of a short venture into my mental state in 2009, feel free to check it out. :P
 
Posted by: T.J. Baer | May 26, 2019

Chosen and Queer Ladies in Media

Creating this five-minute video somehow took all freaking morning (and beyond), but I’m fairly satisfied with the result, so I suppose all is well. :P In any case! A look at my ongoing LGBTQ+ fantasy series, Chosen, and the general state of queer and powerful ladies in media, accompanied by a great many gifs because a video of just my voice + a black screen would probably be less than scintillating.

Latest Vegan Vlog: In which I discuss my recent resolution to eat less junk, my struggles with sugar (and fiber), and a delicious chocolate chia seed pudding recipe. Also, there is much weirdness, because…just because.

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