ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
... here are some things to try.

Most of this advice is good. It can be boiled down to, if you feel awful, try changing one simple thing.

I will add, don't pressure yourself too much about anything. Also check to see if these things make you feel better or accomplish a practical purpose. If so, keep doing them. If not, quit and try something else. Don't try to force yourself to look or act "normal" if it doesn't help or actually makes you feel worse. You've got better things to do with that spoon.

Beyond that ...

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
So here we are on a habitable planet, making it less habitable. Instead of terraforming, we are terradeforming. O_O

My thoughts on the points cited ...

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Here's an article speculating on potential harm from wearable devices.  Let's consider some possible issues ...


1) Does it emit radiation? If so, it's probably something you don't want next to your skin a lot.  Remember that the most common danger from radiation isn't a single big does, but the buildup over time, in which a lot of tiny doses definitely add up.  This could be greatly reduced by shielding. Companies probably won't bother unless consumers force  them to. But you can probably make your own.  Radiation from wearables isn't very strong so you don't need six feet of concrete to stop it.  Consider also that some wearables emit a lot more than others.  Don't choose a high-rad device if a low-rad one will do what you need.

2) Does it contain toxic materials? This is common, as things must be proven unsafe rather than proven safe. There are things which, again, you probably don't want to press on your skin all the time. This is easily solved by using a protective cover of something you're not allergic to and don't make go haywire.  Don't trust corporations to put your safety first; they are legally obligated (in America) to put their shareholders' profits first.  Don't trust government agencies either; they're interested in avoiding panic and making their donors happy.  You are not their priority either.  Look for reports by people who don't have a dog in the fight.  These are rare, but tend to be more reliable if you can find them.  Also if something is getting banned somewhere, it's probably not great for your body.

3) Does it interfere with your somatic motions, make your body part hurt, or cause some other physical problems? This is likely an ergonomic issue which may be affected by the size, shape, weight, etc. of the device. Later generations will probably improve. If you have this problem, try moving the device, carrying it in a pocket, etc. If all else fails, wait a year or two and test a newer model.

4) Does it mess with your social, sleep, or other life patterns? This tends to be a behavior issue, which is a combination of physical and nonphysical factors. Staring at a glowing screen at night can make you unsleepy (but not untired, alas). So can thinking about complex things  such as what someone's latest message means for your schedule tomorrow. If you have this type of problem, try modifying the times when you use your device. Staring at the gizmo on your wrist could cause your to walk into traffic and get hit by a car, or piss off your friend and get dumped. If you are having this type of problem, try changing the way in which you interact with your device and with people around you.

5) In any case, pay close attention to new technology before and after adopting it.  What are the financial, physical, social, and time costs?  What are you gaining by using this tool?  What are you losing?  I highly recommend the Amish rule: When deciding whether to adopt a new piece of technology, ask whether it does more good than harm.  If it does more good, adopt it.  If it does more harm, do not adopt it.  (You don't have the draw the line in the same place they do.  I don't, but I use the same rule.  Heck, even they argue over it.)  Really really think about this.  Don't grab something new just because it is new and everyone says it's cool.  Think about what it will do for you  and what you'll have to give up to get that.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 Know the difference.  Also understand that meltdowns are not exclusive to neurovariant children.  Neurotypical kids and adults can have them too.  Everyone has a threshold where their brain will enter buffer overflow and cease to function properly due to excessive input.  It's just a lower threshold for some people than others.  Also understand how to cope with a meltdown.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This article and video explain that police officers customarily and sensibly wear holsters designed for maximum control of their firearms.  That makes it impossible for an officer's gun to fall out of a holster or be misappropriated by someone else.  Further safety features address specific parts of the gun such as the slide and trigger, again to prevent it from firing accidentally or under hostile action.  In order to the remove and fire the gun, it is necessary to know the exact method which the holster is set to permit, in which case the officer can draw and fire quite easily.  Without the knowledge and practice of how this holster works, the gun is not coming lose, because the technology is quite well designed.  Responsible gun owners use equipment like this to avoid stupid accidents like shooting themselves in the crotch or having children fire a gun.  Concerned about your safety?  You could bolt one of these to your bed and not have to worry about shooting yourself in your sleep, yet still have your weapon ready at hand.

None of this does any good if the officer is paranoid and delusional.  By paranoid, I mean generally inclined to believe that everyone is out to get him when it is not the case.  By delusional, I mean believing something which not only did not happen, but could not  happen as claimed.  

There is equipment designed to protect officers and other people around them.  Regrettably it cannot overcome all human failings.  If officers do not understand their equipment, use it properly, and trust  that it will perform as designed -- then they can't take advantage of the safety features as intended.

Put these two factors together and the result is a loss of life which was entirely preventable.  This is just one incident in a widespread pattern of police brutality marked not just by physical violence, but by deep psychological distortions.  When one officer makes a mistake which unnecessarily kills a civilian, that person needs to find a different line of work.  And when the same problem occurs repeatedly throughout multiple departments, then it indicates a pervasive flaw in law enforcement as a whole.

Of course, another consideration is that parts of this problem are not mistakes but are desired goals of a police state.  That's a political issue and somewhat different. 
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem came out of the March 3, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] balsamandash, LJ user Wyld_dandelyon, and Anthony Barrette. It also fills the "American as Apple Pi(e)" square in my 3-2-15 card for the Pi(e) Bingo Fest. This poem has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette. It belongs to the SPOON/Granny Whammy thread of the Polychrome Heroics series.

Warning: This poem mentions some historic conflicts and survival tactics which may not be to everyone's taste.

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ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem came out of the February 3, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] dialecticdreamer. It also fills the "trusted with a knife" square in my 12-30-14 card for the Rites of Passage fest. This poem has been sponsored by [personal profile] lynnoconnacht. It belongs to the Antimatter & Stalwart Stan thread of the Polychrome Heroics series.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
They spy on you.  The potential for abuse is enormous.

Remember that paper books do not track which parts of them you read.  If you read books in a library without checking them out, or buy with cash, there is no way to tell which ones you have read.  This protects sensitive information.

It does not matter if what you are doing is legal.  The police are not obligated to know or follow laws; they can arrest you if they THINK you're breaking a law when you're not.  People have been arrested for reading or even just having books or other learning materials that somebody thought they shouldn't have.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
These companies are owned by indigenous people making body care products, mostly from traditional ingredients.  If natural products work better for you than synthetics, check out these offerins. 
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 [personal profile] dialecticdreamer has a thoughtful discussion about warnings on fiction which has spawned lengthy and interesting conversations.  If this topic interests you, definitely take a look.  It's especially useful if you write/make stuff and have thought about whether to use warnings or what kind.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
About the new Trans Lifeline - 877 565 8860
Trans Lifeline is a non-profit dedicated to the well being of transgender people. This is a FREE helpline run by volunteers and supported by the community.

Who is this line for?
This line is primarily for transgender people experiencing a crisis. This includes people who may be struggling with their gender identity and are not sure that they are transgender. While our goal is to prevent self harm, we welcome the call of any transgender person in need. We will do our very best to connect them with services that can help them meet that need. If you are not sure whether you should call or not, then please call.

Who will answer when I call?
Our hotline is staffed by the true experts on transgender experience, transgender people themselves.

When can I call?
Call whenever you need help.

Link courtesy of [personal profile] bilqis.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Here's a terrific breakdown, with technical details, which disproves the fallacy that "If you can speak, you can breathe."

Humans need oxygen to survive.  Not enough oxygen, they die.  There are a lot of things that can go wrong with oxygen transmission.  That's why the FIRST rule of emergency aid is Airway, Breathing, Circulation.  

Also it is not okay to kill someone because they are annoying you.  Killing is a last resort for when someone is actively trying to kill or maim you or someone else.  Once they are no longer an active threat, it is not okay to kill them.  It is also not okay to let them die or to prevent other people from rendering medical aid.

Basically, don't act like a B-movie villain.

I have a supervillain, Farce, who has asthma.  It does not stop her from being a supervillain, but does complicate her life.  Her nemesis is the superhero Damask, and there are some interesting fights that involve Farce's breathing problems.  For the introduction, see "Weaving Damask."
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Browse a detailed explanation of testicle attacks from a self-defense trainer who is also an EMT, helpfully illustrated by many agonizing videos courtesy of Mixed Martial Arts tournaments. 

This reference is useful for writing as well as personal protection.  Fortressa has a running experiment about how much more effective this is while wearing a battlesuit, and Buttons is trying to replicate her results barehanded.  Yes, you can break someone's pelvis with a groin strike, that's in one of the videos.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
A friend asked me for resources on tactile sensitivity in small children. I wrote a response and then realized it would be useful to more people, so here it is. Much of this stuff will generalize to other sensory issues and to adults.

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ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem was written outside the prompt calls, based on discussion with [personal profile] dialecticdreamer. It also fills the "enlightenment" square in my 9-29-14 card for the [community profile] origfic_bingo  fest.  It has been sponsored by [personal profile] janetmiles.  This poem belongs to the Polychrome Heroics series, and is a direct sequel to "Sanitation Engineers."

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
One thing that happens to me a lot is that people ask if I'm a psychologist or counselor. Technically, no; I've only taken a few classes in that sort of thing. What they're picking up on is that I'm a student of human nature, I like digging into the source code of the wetware not just the user interface, and I've researched a ton of this stuff for my writing projects. The practical application is from pastoral counseling; when you're a priestess, the community's problems wind up on your couch, and you either learn to deal with it or you find a different social role.

That said, one of the most common reasons people identify me that way is validation. It's something I do a lot. There is a tremendous amount of imposter syndrome, gaslighting, internalized oppression, bad tape, and other bullshit that distorts people's worldview and makes them question their own perceptions. This is best addressed by having an outside source validate their perceptions. It's particularly useful in cases of trans identity, abuse, and other things that are highly targeted. So if someone posts about their gender realignment work, I'll validate their expressed gender. That comes not just from my study of how humans work, but my archivist tendency to protect the truth. Validating it helps it stick. I've had people say that just this was more useful than what their professional therapists have done, so clearly there's a need for it.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem came out of the October 7, 2014 Poetry Fishbowl.  It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] perfectworry, LJ user Westrider, and Deb1789.  It also fills the "parent(s)" square in my 9-29-14 card for the [community profile] origfic_bingo  fest.  This poem has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette.  It belongs to the series Frankenstein's Family.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)

This poem is spillover from the October 7, 2014 Poetry Fishbowl.  It was inspired and sponsored by Shirley Barrette.  It also fills the "brand new" square on my 9-29-14 card for the Origfic Bingo fest. 

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 ... piloting a BattleMech.  This is a brilliant metaphor that will make sense to many gamers.  Remember that once the systems have overheated, it takes time  to cool down to a functional level again.  This is useful if you or someone you know has PTSD or any related condition.

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