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Thread: Primal With A Side Of FABULOUS page 455

  1. #4541
    Gay Panda's Avatar
    Gay Panda is offline Senior Member
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    Primal Fuel
    Perhaps it is time someone posted a picture of a gravestone in the Iodine Thread. Five days without a meltdown, without a single post?! This topic has passed to the great beyond.

  2. #4542
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    Noooooo! Don't bump it, for the love of little baby ducks! You'll bring grizz back. It's like saying the witch's name three times.
    “If I didn't define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people's fantasies for me and eaten alive.” --Audre Lorde

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  3. #4543
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    *ears perk up*

    Did I hear someone recite my name three times?

    *looks around*

    Ahh, apparently not. I'll go back to what I was doing, then.

  4. #4544
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    It is so very hard to untie weight from worth.

    I was a normal-sized cub, but one of the Perpetually Sticky Panda Siblings was not. It seemed like almost overnight between the ages of five and six, he’d gone from a normal size to chunky. At the table, he’d shovel food into his mouth so fast that his cheeks would bulge and he’d start to choke. Our father refused to go to elementary school sporting events for this son, because he did not want to be known as the Father of the Fat Kid. He rarely attended any of our events, but for the rest of us it was borne of disinterest. For this cub, it was shame.

    Accepting my heaviness as an adult has always been a challenge I could not surmount. At my worst moments, I avoided social events because I couldn’t stand people seeing how bad it had gotten. This isn’t me, yet it is. I felt that shiver again last month at a party, my pants the tiniest bit too tight and sixty people all there to witness. I stayed in my chair with my legs pushed under the tablecloth, damning myself for slacking off on the scale after months of frustration on the weight loss front. Everyone was very nice and I had a good time at the party, but having to stand up once and be introduced to all of those people made me cringe internally. Please don’t look at my pants.

    Rereading this, it sounds so very shallow. But I am. Surrounded by wealthy professionals of average size, I took comfort that at least they couldn’t see my bank account or job history. Scientists and musicians and lawyers and artists, degrees and awards and vacation homes, and there was Gay Panda in their midst, a former Petsmart dog washer wearing tight pants and praying no one would ask which publishing house I’d gone with since self-publishing is not a respected answer. On every standard in that room from weight to real estate to education to financial success, I failed. I am used to this, being outdone in pretty much every arena by every person in my life, but putting a gloss* on a less-than-stellar educational history and career to save face in a social situation isn’t that hard. I can’t do the same with my weight. It’s just there.

    It’s hard not to respond by becoming extremely perfectionist about what I eat, recording every ounce, every bite, every sniff. At least I control that! In my dreams, I’m shoveling candy in my mouth, my subconscious rebelling from the ligatures around my conscious mind. Yesterday I ate a small container of raspberries from Whole Foods and a slice of apple, and this morning I almost could not bring myself to weigh. Now I’d be retaining water from that amount of carbs, spiraling higher from so very little, and how could I have given in to the raspberries? Why the apple slice? Such sloth.

    It served me right after all those mental gyrations and bad feelings and total ridiculousness that my Q was down to 196 flat. And while I could spend the next half hour summing up this post in some witty/thoughtful/asterisked way, I need to make breakfast for myself and a tray of jalapeno poppers for Lady Friend (sorry, Lady Friend) for making her Mr. President in that (most wonderful) game I learned from bloodorchid’s journal.

  5. #4545
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    UPDATE: (in explanation of *)

    * I hate glossing up the truth. It feels so dishonest.

    Truth: I have a bachelor's degree, and that is all. I could not stand the thought of taking out more loans to get my master's. I also had no idea what to get my master's in. People suggested creative writing, but I don't want to spend years reading classics. Yes, you can learn a lot from classics. But (at least for me) you can learn just as much from bad books. If you are a writer, read the bad ones, too. And study them very carefully to figure out why they were bad, and how they could have been made better. I tortured Lady Friend with a long diatribe about exactly WHY Twilight's ending was so bad, and I should probably make her a steak to go with those jalapeno poppers. She was very patient.

    Truth: I make about ten to twenty dollars a month by writing. (Adjust that down a little with a return. The Kindle forums are fascinating. Apparently some people make a habit out of buying books, reading them very quickly, and then returning them for a refund.)
    Last edited by Gay Panda; 09-03-2012 at 09:15 AM.

  6. #4546
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gay Panda View Post
    Apparently some people make a habit out of buying books, reading them very quickly, and then returning them for a refund.)
    I consider that to be flat out thievery. I will go to the library and read books, and I will borrow books from friends. I actually buy a lot of (e)books.

    I will not return a book I've bought & read. If I happen to buy a book that I discover is Not For Me, I will first try to think of someone I can gift it to. Next choice is to leave it on the free book table at the local library.

  7. #4547
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    You can learn a lot from a horrible book, especially how not to write a book. Wanna learn how to cram too much preaching into a sci-fi novel? Read Heinlein's For Us, The Living. Wanna learn how to ruin a good story with bad dialogue? Read any number of he said/ she said novels. Wanna shove so much opinion and history down the reader's that that they choke on it? Read Cry The Beloved Country.
    I refuse to return any book I've read. If I've read it, then I accomplished the purpose the author wanted for the book. I may threaten to use it as kindling if I found it exceptionally horrid (and only one book to date has earned that threat); I may palm it off on someone else; I may give it to the library or sell it to the used bookstore; I may even delete an e-book. In reality, I refuse to return anything I've used, because that's cheap, ghetto-trash behavior that I've worked my whole damn life to rise above.
    "No fate but what we make"- Sarah Connor, Terminator 2
    Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, steak in one hand, chocolate in the other, yelling "Holy F***, What a Ride!"
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  8. #4548
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    I used to work in publishing, and a lot of booksellers pay their bills using returns. The publisher (or self-publisher, in Panda's case) ends up eating those costs, and that eventually means less royalties for writers and lower wages for staff because that's where they make cuts to keep the profits up.

    The book industry is a depressing place.
    “If I didn't define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people's fantasies for me and eaten alive.” --Audre Lorde

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  9. #4549
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    Also, summer is the time for raspberries. I'm totally okay with giving up on sugary treats, but a life without fresh raspberries is not worth the sacrifice.
    “If I didn't define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people's fantasies for me and eaten alive.” --Audre Lorde

    Owly's Journal

  10. #4550
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    Quote Originally Posted by RaeVynn View Post
    I consider that to be flat out thievery. I will go to the library and read books, and I will borrow books from friends. I actually buy a lot of (e)books.

    I will not return a book I've bought & read. If I happen to buy a book that I discover is Not For Me, I will first try to think of someone I can gift it to. Next choice is to leave it on the free book table at the local library.
    It's actually been a lot of fun for me to read authors debating this issue.

    As a voracious reader in the past, I purchased some really bad books now and then. I never returned them to the store. It didn't even occur to me to do that. I just thought well, I won't buy anything else from THAT author. And I didn't. Then I donated the bad books to the library to let someone else be tortured by them, and told friends not to waste their money if the author's name ever came up in conversation.

    Some authors get really upset by the returns, because of the thievery issue. Books don't magically appear in files within a writer's computer, ready for publication; he or she has to compose every single letter and it can be painstaking work at times. That book a person can read in a matter of days took the author months to years to craft. So to enjoy a book and then return it, cheating the author of a few cents to a few dollars, is just low.

    Other authors don't care about the returns, taking the view that someone might cheat that way, but that cheater might also like the book and recommend it to friends who won't game the system like that. So it's no big deal, the loss of two dollars or whatever it was, because they might gain more in the long run.

    Then there is the whole argument about quality. Some of the self-published books on Amazon are truly horrendous creations. You wouldn't pay for a meal in a restaurant that had bugs or shards of glass in it, and some of these books have the literary equivalent of bugs and shards of glass in them. But with the Look Inside option that Amazon offers, you get to read a sizable chunk of every book for free. I've read dozens of them, and that chunk is more than enough to tell me if the book is worth investing the money in it. If I can't get into the first two chapters, I'm not going to pay and hold out hope that the rest will be any better. But many people don't have the time to do that and perhaps buy on impulse, and then circle sad faces on their feelings charts when they realize chapter is misspelled and the author can't maintain a verb tense in the same sentence. Returns are understandable. But where do you draw your personal line? Misspellings and crappy grammar make returns acceptable, but what about if those issues are fine and it's just the characters or plot a reader doesn't enjoy? That doesn't sit as well with me. I've had lots of restaurant meals that didn't tickle my personal palate, but it wasn't because anything was wrong with them. They just weren't for me. I didn't refuse to pay or slip a fake bug on my plate to get a free meal.

    I haven't really formed my own opinion on this issue, but it's interesting to read how everyone thinks about it. And I should probably stop here, because this turned into a far longer post than I intended.

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