An Adult Touch

Well, the piece of adult art I was waiting for has been finished, and no I won’t be posting it here.  It has been posted in my art galleries though, if anyone is interested in it.

It brings to mind some interesting discussion, however; one that I’m still having with myself, to some extent.  Why adult art?  Should  I share it or not?  Is it liberating, demeaning, or something else?  Does it trivialize how I feel about myself if I’m having art created flashing the goods to all and sundry? How does it compare to clean art?

To answer the first question, my dragon self is myself.  For me, it encompasses every aspect of my being, which, yes, does include the sexual parts as well.  If I were to somehow become my dragon self, I wouldn’t suddenly be sexless, and so it makes a sort of sense to explore that as well.

I feel I should probably clarify here as well.  Yes, I am straight, and attracted to human women.  Yes, I know dragons don’t exist physically currently.  If they suddenly did, no I wouldn’t want to go make out with one, especially if they weren’t sentient.  Now, if I had become a dragon too, through whatever had brought them into being?  In that case, all bets are off.

I’d guess I really started thinking about it back when I had a dragonkin girlfriend for a short while.  Suffice it to say that before we broke up we explored our draconity with each other and leave it at that.  Either way, certain, ah, body parts were involved, which meant I had to explore that side and figure out what I had down there.  And then of course, when I finally got a reference sheet drawn, it seemed a natural step to get an adult version as well as a clean version, just in case I ever needed it.  After all, in the end it’s just another part of my body like any other.

Of course after I got the reference sheets, it was years before I actually got any further art, in large part due to monetary constraints.  When I started getting pictures again, I found myself debating this topic once more.  In large part, I was considering getting an adult piece from Asyd, but I wanted to see how I’d look in her style first, hence the picture I did actually get.  I do have to admit I was also a bit uncertain about getting one done in general, but I did like the way her style works with those.

When I saw how busy she actually was though, I gave up on the idea for a bit – at least until my muse slapped me upside the head with an image I wanted to see done.  With her off the table, I had to go artist shopping again to find one who had a style I liked and was available.  The first artist I found actually was otherwise occupied, but shortly after Syrinoth opened up and I jumped on it in time to snag the slot.

It was a bit longer wait than I expected, but the end picture was worth it, and then I was faced with whether to share it or not.  Just like in the picture, where I had mixed feelings on showing “myself” off(and he did a great job on the expression to show this!), I had the exact same feelings on putting the picture itself out there.  Especially as there are a few folk who know me elsewhere who watch my FA, and I wasn’t sure what they’d think of it.

In the end, I decided to run with it(as I’m expecting it to show up in the artist’s gallery as well at some point), but with a disclaimer not to expect a lot of adult art, as I have mixed feelings on it in general.  I do know I will be getting at least one more piece though, as my muse spoke up again with another picture idea that I need to make a reality, though it will probably be a while as the artist I’m looking to have draw it is busy with school currently.

Part of what inclines me towards it is I think I have a bit of an exhibitionist streak, and this is a “safe” way to indulge that. Kinda ironic, given how shy I can be at times.. or maybe it’s because of that?  That same shyness though is what disinclines me to sharing it publically in any fashion.  If I followed that train of thought however, what would I do with it?  My potential future girlfriend isn’t ‘kin or a furry, as far as I know, and it’s not like I’d want to put it up on my walls anywhere.  Art that isn’t being viewed is art that is wasted, and  I wouldn’t want good art to be lost to the void, whatever the content.  Thus, the posting of this, and the one I have in the queue.

Another thing to note though is I am far from alone in this.  There are many, many dragons out there who have gotten adult art of themselves, or of themselves and a friend/mate mounting or being mounted.  They’re proud of their draconic forms(as I am) and aren’t afraid to show it off.  In some cases, it also acts as a proxy too; a way to express themselves and perform in ways they are unable to in the real world for various reasons.  In other cases, it’s merely a release or an ego boost for them, for similar reasons to those of some people that have mass amounts of one-night-stands. (Honestly, this is the artistic equivalent.)  And in yet others, it’s just a way to show to the world how they feel about each other(as in the case of a pair of dragon artists I’ve mentioned in previous entries).

In my case, I’ve gotten art from most of the artists I wanted art from, so now it’s just waiting for when my muse prods my brain with an image to make real, whether adult or otherwise.  However, since it is me in those pictures, there’s not going to be any art of myself making out with anyone else, unless it’s someone I care deeply about and they actually want such art done.  Whatever my faults and sexual inclinations, one thing I am is loyal to whomever holds my heart.  Even if they didn’t care, to me it’d feel like a betrayal if I were to get art of myself “laying” with anyone else’s characters.

On top of that, I’ve never felt any inclination to make up a character for myself to “play” with, as it’d feel just as fake as the various “waifus” some crowds will fawn over.  The closest I’ve ever come to that is a couple stories I wrote where I had characters being dangerously close to self-inserts(I’m sure given that information any readers could probably pick out which ones too.), but in the end those were still just characters, not a true avatar of myself.

I’m sure there will be some folks though who will still think I’m debasing myself, and to them I say pfff. Humans(and that includes draconic humans!) are by nature sexual creatures and being ashamed of that is like being ashamed of liking meat- if that’s your thing, go for it! Does it matter what you like or do, if it hurts no one else?  Of course, I’m sure there’s someone out there now who found my picture and is busy fantasizing about it, but that’s their problem and as long as they don’t get all up in my face, it’s all on them.  I’m not on the hunt for a mate anymore, as I have someone I care about now, so it’s not like I’m flashing myself to get companions or lovers.  I’m just… er… letting it all hang out?

Finally, there is something nice about getting art of oneself in general, no matter the content.  It’s like taking another piece of that innermost self and bringing it into the real world, as much as one can at least.  I guess one way to put it is that it’s like a selfie of the soul.  It encapsulates a moment, a emotion, a feeling, and reveals it to the world.  It sucks you in, and lets you live for a brief instant as what you truly are.  The clean art lets me express the more public aspects of my dragon self, while the adult ones reveal the more personal, more instinctual desires and needs that are still just as much a part of me as any other.

I am not speaking for all ‘kin, or even a large portion, but for me, that’s what the art means to me.  That’s what pushed me to follow through on my muse’s urgings and my personal inclinations..  It’s just another expression of my multifaceted self, and the dragon at the core of my very being.

And no, I’m still not going to post the aforementioned adult art here.  If you really want to find it, you should be able to on your own, and I’d prefer to leave my blog work-safe, even if it gets a bit risque at times(like now).

Now to wait for more commissions to open…

Spring 2014 /m/ season a.k.a. stuff I’m watching

A bunch of series I had been following all wrapped up end of last season, but only a few new ones started.  It makes for a good time to try and catch up on the massive backlog I’ve built up.  The only problem is it’s mostly older toku, so I need to be in the right mood to watch it

Captain Earth

2 episodes out so far and it’s a fairly entertaining and fairly typical Super Robot show. The characters aren’t annoying, and even better, it’s all hand-drawn so there’s no sudden 3D taking you out of the moment.  I’d thrown a lot of technobabble at us though, but most of it seems like stuff that’ll be explained later.

Kamen Rider Gaim

This actually started last year, and looks to be wrapping up by the end of summer.  A very good series reminiscent of the early Heisei Kamen Rider series.  You wouldn’t think fruit samauri karate bugmen would be something that you could get a serious series out of, but this has done it well, without going over the edge into grimderp.

Garo: Makai no Hana

The 4th season or series on the Garo universe, this one is following the son of the main character from the first two seasons.  Well, he seems like he’s supposed to be but they have yet to officially state it.  After last year’s Garo season that deviated rather heavily in style and other factors, this one is feeling a lot more like the original series so far.  Unlike the other two above, I think it’d be better to watch the previous seasons/series as that explains and sets up a lot fo the world, and this so far seems like it expects you to be somewhat familiar with it already.  Not to a heavy extent, but enough that it’d explain a lot of things otherwise that you may not get.

Oddly enough, that’s pretty much it for this season, apart from Shin Ultraman Retsuden, which is waaaay behind on subs currently.  I’d thought this would be a bit meatier before I actually started writing.  Ah well, it is what it is!

And now for something completely different…

It’s random bullshit time!  In other words, not much philosophy, more general cheering and bitching and random life events and wait is this thing on?

Anyways…

If you live in the US, it’s tax time!  This year is probably the easiest I’ll have it from here on out, as I didn’t have anything really to give me any extra tax breaks, so I just had to enter the W2 info and answer no to a lot of things.  However, because of that I apparently ended up even-steven with the state, and owing the Feds $1, which is already taken care of.  No refunds, but on the other hand I didn’t really owe anything either.  $1, big whoop.

Second bit of news is that apparently there’s a true spiritual successor to Sid Meier’s Alpha Centauri coming out!  They can’t use the name since it’s owned by EA, but it’s due out in the fall, but teh screenshots look promising.  Then again, I haven’t touched a Civ game since Civ2 and Alpha Cen, so there’ll prolly be all sorts of new things too.  And even better, it’ll be supported officially on Linux from the start!

Speaking of Linux, this Thursday the 17th is the release date of the next (x)ubuntu LTS, 14.04.  I’ve made it a habit to stick with the LTS until the next one or until something major needs some library that hasn’t or won’t be backported.  I’ve managed to make 12.04 work fine on my desktop until this week, when I found out that apparently my media players fail at Wavpack in MKV, at least however Over-Time does it.  Just means I’ll have to drop a resolution to watch it, and presumably it won’t be an issue after this week.

One nice thing is that I can upgrade straight from 12.04 to 14.04, as long as my install is up to date, which I’m actually doing right now as I write this.  When I went from 10.04 to 12.04 I had to go through the intermediate distros I think… didn’t matter in the end, since I did a fresh install when I got my SSD drive anyways.  My laptop is actually still on 10.04, but I’m planning on backing that up and giving it a clean install coming up here.  Really tempted to do that before I upgrade my desktop, but we’ll see.

In other news, work’s looking to get crazy real soon too… one of the people on my team left end of last week, and we have a bunch of upcoming projects which were gonna tie us up some even without that.  For once, our sales team was just too good!

Getting away from that a bit, since I’m not really looking forward to tomorrow, art is pretty much still in a holding pattern.  No word yet on the pic from Syrinoth, but considering they just moved a little over 3 weeks ago, they could still be busy settling in, or just getting all the commissions done at once for one huge art dump!  Just wish I knew how far down the list I am, and like I mentioned, that pic is one that won’t be reposted here due to content.

The only other piece I have out being worked on is the conbadge, and that artist is still clearing out her queue, so no doubt it’ll be a while longer before she gets far enough down it to get to mine.  There’s people that have been waiting far longer for their stuff after all!

I’m also still keeping an eye on Natoli’s progress through her commissions… I’ve got a specific pic in mind still that I’d like to get, once she finishes.  Form the looks of the progress, it should hopefully be within the next month.  Barring that, if they get around to doing another weekend stream sketch session, I’ll probably snag a slot.  Not for myself, but as a gift for a certain dragoness who apparently hasn’t gotten any arts done before.

Speaking of which, last week I took a long, hard look at how I felt, and manned dragoned up and let her know I was possibly interested in something more than friends.  She didn’t say yes, but she didn’t say no either, and the feeling I got from her replies is that she felt at least somewhat similarly, but she hadn’t fully looked at it before then.  Basically the comments that got me to say something was something she’d come up with in a moment of kinda-sorta-not-really panic when a mutual friend almost threw a wrench in the works without realizing that’s what he was doing.

So basically to sum it up we’re still keepin on keepin on, so to speak, and seeing where things lead on its own.  And honestly?  I’m fine with that.  If things work out for us, great, and if they don’t, I’ll still have a great friend, so it’s win-win!  My worst fear was that I’d been totally misreading things and that I’d scare her off, but thankfully that wasn’t the case, and that was a huge relief.  The entire day before, even though it was such a simple thing, I was nervous as all hell, and kept reminding myself in the words of  a favorite song of one of my friends, to “get up and try, try, try” because in the end it’s worth it.

I could probably write a bit more, but it’s late, I got work in the morning, and I don’t want to be drowsing out at my desk in the middle of the day.  Been thinking of taking vitamins or something, since Gatorade of all things seems to help, and I don’t drink coffee(or any caffinated beverage, really), but again, something for another time. So, I’ll leave you with this reminder, which helped me get through things, and that a certain pair of hatchies I know would like everyone to remember:

Where there is desire there is gonna be a flame

Where there’s a flame someone’s bound to get burned

Just because it burns doesn’t mean you’re gonna die

You gotta get up, and try, and try, and try…

Remember 16… Why?

There’ll probably be a life update type thing in the near future(or there may not be, if I’m no longer in the mood by then) but first I had an idea that was tickling my brain for a little while.  I’d pulled out my old Fire Bomber CD for driving, and while I was heading home “Remember 16″ started playing.  This happened to dovetail with a conversation I’d had the night before where someone was commenting about what if you could go back in time and change one (minor?) thing in your life.

16 is supposed to somehow be a magical age we should be nostalgic about.  It’s when we’re supposed to be making our first explorations of relationships, learning how to drive, basically starting to become more of an adult than child.  The key phrase there is “supposed to”

At that age, I was kind of an idiot in some ways.  I’d just come off of somewhat heavy bullying in middle school, which had followed on from a couple years of teasing in 4th and 5th grade, and was in my second year of high school.  My freshman year I’d started making an actual friend again and was just starting to fall in with a “geek” clique of sorts, but I still had a lot of paranoia born from those years of bullying, looking back.

In short, though I knew how to drive, I didn’t have a car, I did not have many friends, self-esteem was hovering in the lower third of the range, and I tended to assume anything positive or someone approaching me was someone being sarcastic, or the setup to a joke, outside of certain environments.

My academics was great, but my social life was a mess.

Thankfully the friends I had made had dragged me out of my shell and cleared me of most of that, or I’d shudder to think how I would have been in college.  But for me, 16 was far from a time to remember, though I do have some good memories from gaming and my friends of that time.  It was far from the sugary teenage utopia that pop culture pushes, though.

Going back to the idea of changing something though, someone I care about had brought up the idea of having never met her ex.  Combining those lines of thought had sent my thoughts back to when I was 18.

Now I was young and horny as most teenagers still are at that point, and started spending time on an adult MUCK looking for some “fun.”  No, I’m not proud of it, though I have to say that involved text RPing with no visual aids is awesome for developing your descriptive writing skills.  Setting all that aside, my “character” was basically me for the most part with a slightly different background, and I got in a session with this one gal who dropped the “l” word during it.

I was (and still am, mostly) kind of a romantic at heart, and that combined with thinking with my smaller head led to what I consider one of my stupidest moments – mixing IC actions and intentions with OOC ones.  I’d never really had anyone express romantic sentiments to me at that point due to the previously mentioned facts about how I kept myself fairly isolated through high school, thanks to misplaced paranoia, and took the whole exchange deeper to heart than I should have.  I basically went in totally blind and while she was playing a character, I treated it as if it was the person behind the character, until eventually someone on an LDR forum pointed out the “picture” she had sent me was a cropped model image.  When I confronted her about it, feeling betrayed, she disappeared, cut off all contact and changed her character name. I never even found out if she was actually a “she.”

I can look back on it now and see how she was basically humoring me, and so, to answer that question, I wish I could go back and slap the me that was then with a clue-by-four before I even got involved with that.  At one point, I blamed them for the whole mess, but now I can look back and say it mostly was my own damn fault, and their only portion of blame was from not setting me straight early on when they should have realized how I was taking things.  The only good thing that ever came of it was that I learned that LDRs were possible, thanks to finding said support forums’ existence, and that I had finally fully grasped internally that others could actually care for and about me.  Both of those I likely would have learned eventually regardless, but in a much less painful manner.  It did show me also that it was a good idea to not only make sure I kept a solid wall between any RPing and being myself online, but to also make sure everyone else knows where I stand on that as well, in whatever environment I may be in. In other words, I’m just being myself unless I’m explicitly RPing.

Of course for some people if you’re being something other than what you are in meatspace, they consider that RPing.  Being ‘kin, and with my views on identity that I’ve already covered previously, not so much.  To me, RPing is when you take on a different character entirely, with potentially(but not necessarily) different goals, backgrounds, or attitudes.  RPing is like writing a story, but with control only over whatever portion of the narrative your character encompasses. Hanging out on SL as a frog is far different from presenting yourself as Jor’Nath Frogwalker, Amphibian Champion from the Third Galaxy and Master of the Cheezi Death Games.  In my opinion, wearing a different skin is just assuming(or revealing) a different aspect of your identity. Hell, if transhumanism takes off, we’ll be able to do this in meatspace as well!

There’s an easy example of this, actually, within the furry community: Goldfur, the originator of the chakat species.  On one hand, Goldfur is hirself; being a chakat is a significant portion of hir identity, from what I have seen around the community.  On the other, shi also has written stories about Goldfur the chakat who has 2 chakat sisters in Federation service and has two foxtaurs and a human Federation admiral as mates in a Star Trek-like universe.  Now the two may be similar in some ways, but the Chakatverse Goldfur is still hir own entity compared to the furry who wrote the stories, with different experiances and family, not to mention a completely different history.

That may be the actual best way to describe the divergence point. An RP character is a separate entity from the person playing it.  It’s like acting out a script that you’re writing as you go, while being yourself requires no extra thought in doing so.

That said, if my avatar is a certain shape, when I act, that is my shape.  While humans don’t nuzzle to show affection, dragons do.  Dragons may not have arms as such, so they may hug with wings or tail, or use them to wave rather than a forepaw. However, I would not do those things in a fully human body, as it is not built for it, nor is it appropriate.  The shape of the body does not have to be the shape of the soul, and the former can be changed, even if only virtually at this time.  So the way I look at it is to use the right tool for the right job – after all, while you can use a hammer on a screw, it doesn’t exactly produce the intended result over a screwdriver.  Of course, some of that also probably partly comes from having spent so many years among the furry community in the past.

Either way I’m now older and wiser and… well, that’s a post for another time.  Suffice it to say that for me a lot of the past is simply the past and my future at the moment is looking fairly promising, if murky.

Patience

Patience is hard.  In a world where everything is “faster faster, nownownow” we aren’t exactly encouraged to look at anything long term anymore.  Corporations look at the next quarter instead of 5 years ahead, everyone shopped with credit to get their gadgets right away, not to mention you can buy almost anything with the click of the mouse.  That blockbuster movie?  Don’t wait for it to come out on DVD and download a camrip instead.  And god forbid you have to do any real work to beat the boss and get your shinies!

In this internet-powered world of instant gratification, waiting is ever more difficult as you get used to the breakneck pace and instant availability of everything.  When that starts to get annoying, then it’s time to take a deep breath and remember what it takes to get some of these things.

One big example was Blizzard’s April Fool’s Day patch notes for WoD.  I kept cracking up as I read most of these… classic Blizzard humor(Chakra, when the walls fell!) with those couple of ideas that might actually be cool someday.  And then when I go to check the comments on MMO-C to see who else got some of those, what do I find but people bitching that they wasted time on what probably wasn’t more than an hour’s worth of work that could easily have been done during breaks.  Not only that, but it was probably their web team, which has no effect on the speed that WoD is coming out.

Apparently people couldn’t put aside their- yeah I’m gonna sue the word, because if the shoe fits- entitlement to laugh and enjoy some jokes, they’re taking a game way too seriously.  Yeah, Fall is a long time.  I might unsub myself for a few months depending on if we keep raiding or not.  A couple WoWless months isn’t the end of the world!

For my part, I’ve also got a couple pieces of art that I’ve been waiting for also.  One isn’t going to be posted here because reasons, and the other is one I been waiting on a while, but I knew that artist had a huge backlog that she’s still working through.  I’m actually finding it harder to wait for the one I’ve been waiting a shorter time on, but there’s two factors there:  I actually had a specific image in mind from the start, and with that artist he doesn’t have a publicly available waiting list.

Even if you’re near the bottom of the list, it’s still somehow easier when you can see just how far down you are on the list.  It’s like a visual reminder that yes, it is coming.

I’m also waiting on another artist to re-open commissions, and again the same factor here helps with the waiting.  They have a public list of the commissions on their list and how far they are, so it helps with the waiting… but also makes it a bit more intense as it gets close to time.

Either way it’s time to- as they say- hurry up and wait!

Looking forward

So yesterday I found out I actually got a raise last year, just no one ever told me about it!  Guess that shows how much attention I pay to my paystubs, huh?  Anyways, I was waiting for my financial situation to solidify to seriously house-hunt, so I’d be able to budget properly, and now that I know I already got a bump and when my next one is coming, I can actually start to look and plan on where I want to move.  Which brings up another question:

Rent or Buy?

Renting has a few advantages.  For one, you don’t need to worry about maintenance of the place, as that is the landlord’s responsibility.  You also don’t need to go into debt for it(unless you’re in a really crappy financial position) and you’re not tied down.  There’s no property to sell, you just up and go when it’s time to move.

The lack of ties however is a double-edged sword.  As the landlord still owns the property, if they get into financial trouble you could lose your place due to no actions of your own.   If you run into financial troubles yourself, there’s a lot less barriers to losing the place and ending up on the street, and while there is no debt, you’re also essentially throwing the money away too, as rent paid is money you’ll never get back.   Basically, pretty much all the main downsides of renting are financial in nature.  The only one that I can think of that isn’t is that you are limited in what changes you can make to the place yourself.

Buying a place basically reverses all these issues.  You have to fully maintain it yourself(barring a townhome or condo), but you can make whatever changes you want without consulting anyone else.  You go into debt(unless you can save up several years worth of salary) but you eventually get your money back when you sell it, inflation-adjusted as the house prices follow inflation.  You have to sell it when you move, but there’s less of a chance to immediately end up on the street if your finances go south.  About the only unique aspect to buying is paying property taxes, as there is no equivalent when renting.

At this point in my life, a 2+ bedroom townhome is what I’m looking for as I can turn the extra bedroom into a study/library/mancave, and I don’t need to worry about yardwork.  I’ve only glanced over the for sale listings a few months ago and checked out one townhome complex that has them up for rent, so I don’t have a large sample at the moment.

My initial inclination was towards renting, for the lack of debt/ties and maintenance, but the cost to rent the townhome I looked at was about on par with the monthly payments of some mortgages.  It was a fairly nice place apart from that, which is the main reason I haven’t fully written it off yet.  What I really do now though is look through the listings of local townhomes that may be for sale and see what’s out there currently.

One factor that inclines me towards renting is that the person I’m interested in is several states away.  If anything ever comes of it, that’ll have to change eventually, but as the saying goes, eventually can be a very long time.  As such, I’m trying to exclude those thoughts when examining my options.

Basically, at this point the main factors inclining me against buying are going back into debt, and having to sell before/when I move.  I know someone at my workplace that has been having a lot of trouble trying to sell his house, so that’s not as easy as it sounds, while with the way the US is heading the less debt, the better.

At this point, I’m basically going to have to do some research, both in mortgages and in what’s available, to decide for sure whether I want to rent or buy a townhome.  Or if I want to stick it out at my current place a while longer to keep saving up.

In other news, my WoW guild is 4/14H now, as we got Galakras heroic down last night.  We even had a heroic warforged staff drop, but I’d already used my priority roll on a heroic tier token earlier this week, so I had to pass. Either way, we’re still progressing.  I’ve got until mid-May to decide if I want to drop my sub temporarily or not, so still some time to see what we do.

Finally, in art news, still got a couple pics in the works, but no word yet on where they are.  Also waiting on stream sketch commissions to happen again as well, as I want to get a pic for someone, and a stream sketch would be perfect for that.  We’ll see!

In this Serenity… and Pride

1395159812.adalfyre_dekafoxSo since I don’t know how long it’ll be until I have another picture to post, I figured I might as well post this one now… but I also had another reason to bring it up.

Adalfyre had some bills come up earlier than expected, and had to open emergency commissions, so I hopped on that to help and snag another picture in the process.  At the time, I didn’t have anything in specific in mind apart from the general pose, and she produced the above very nice pic.

Since then however, the more I’ve looked at it, the more I’ve got feelings of serenity and passing on from it.  The best way I can describe the imagery it’s evoking now is it’s like a spirit form of myself is  pausing in the fields of green to take one last look back at life/mortality, before moving onto whatever awaits me next.  There’s no one thing I can point to, but it’s some combination of all the individual elements that combine to give this impression of an aged (fox)dragon passing into the Light.

It’s all completely unintentional, but it works so perfectly that it may as well have been planned that way.

When my life does eventually end, this is how I hope it goes.  A peaceful passing, pausing one last time to look back at all I have done and seen; one last view of the mortal world as my spirit and soul takes its true shape and reunites in Heaven with my friends and loved ones that had gone before me.

Yes, I said Heaven.  What’s wrong with believing in the trinity and believing in my own draconity at the same time?  There’s nothing that contradicts the two, as far as I’m concerned.  If God wished to put the soul of a dragon in the body of a human, I’m sure He has his reasons, even if we are unable to comprehend them ourselves at this time.

Before anyone start throwing Bible quotes around, let me remind them that the current English versions of the Bible are a translation of a translation, with potentially even more changes on top of that.  Take an English text, translate it through German and Japanese and then back to English, and see how accurate it is.  In fact, there’s even one obvious example:  “Thou shalt not kill.”  The word that “kill” was translated from apparently, if properly translated according to our current understanding, is actually “murder.”

There’s also all the people who mouth Jesus’s commandment to “love one another as yourselves” and all the times he preached similar messages, then turn around and use his name to preach hate against others.

Should I add that a lot of the current imagery of Heaven actually comes from Dante’s Inferno and similar works, and never actually from any version of the Bible?

But that’s all a topic for another time.  The other thing I was wanting to cover is something completely different, and it’s not a man with three buttocks.

Last night, my raid group and I finally got our next Heroic boss down in SOO in WoW!  We’d finally gotten to work on it in earnest this week and last, and we ended up switching to a single-heals strategy which was what netted us the kill.  Tuesday, we were getting him to 10% before the wipe.  Last night, we got him to 1% and 3%, then finally got the kill.

I have to tell you, after working on that boss a while, there was definitely an adrenaline rush when we got him close, hoping and praying internally for the kill.  That’s part of what raiding is all about –  those edge kills in progression, busting your butt to clean up the strategy and play and push those last few centimeters for that first kill.

When we were getting close, I starting to feel a bit worn, so I decided to throw on a little music to help, and funnily enough, the two songs worked out almost perfectly in theme and fight length.  Just Live More, the op to Kamen Rider Gaim, and Eternal Saint from Saint Seiya Omega.

If I start the first song during the pull countdown, the main music kicks in a few seconds into the pull.  The time when stuff just starts getting busy coincides with the lyric “It’s survival, you got to move” which describes that fight to a T.  Then that wraps up and segues into Eternal Saint when things are starting to get heavy.  That one is all instrumental, so there’s no lyrics to potentially distract you, while it swells up all orchestral and inspirational, and it was fairly close to wrapping up at the moment of the kill.  It just felt like a perfect match.

As for the loot?  Nothing dropped for priests and my coin roll was gold.  But like another raid member said, “I ain’t even mad.”  If we did it once, we’ll do it again, and there’s plenty more bosses waiting to have their faces melted.

 

Working Hard or Hardly Working?

IT Foxdragon

 

Combination update and overdue art post.  I actually got the above picture about a month ago, but I held off because I had thought another commission might finish soon as well.  In the end, it didn’t, but I got another recently, so I figured now was a good time.  I also have two more being worked on, so there may be another art post in the near future, depending on when they get finished.

The above was from a Dragonlovers stream sketch.  As for the other, I snagged a picture from Aaros now that he’s got his tablet mojo working.

1394664705.aaros_dekafox

*poses* Just look at these wings!  Rawr!

Other than that, I have a couple more in the works as I said, and at least 2 more definite ones I want done, as I actually have an image in mind for them, not to mention specific artists in mind. So, it’s back to playing a waiting game for slots to re-open.

In other worlds, I’ve officially got the promotion now to go with the work I’ve been doing.  There’s other changes too that may be going through, though I can’t go into details as they’re not set-in-stone yet.

Relationship-wise, still in Limbo – in other words, technically there isn’t one yet.  So far, I’m still just coasting along and seeing where it leads.  From what I’ve heard if there’s nothing deeper to it it’ll die out in another month or two, so that’ll be a good time to either push forward or let it drop completely into just being good friends, with no real look towards anything more.  In the meantime, I’ll just keep on being myself, and try not to let any feelings cloud my judgement and vice versa.

And speaking of Limbo, I put together a little filk song about the Isle of Wyrms today, and that makes a good thing to round out this little post.  There’s no tune made for it yet, though if it gets put to music there’ll probably be some mention made here!

Limbo’s the land
Where dragons were born
And grew and built and played;
There’s always a gathering of friends to be found
If the lag would just stay away!

Where the gryphons cry
And the dragons fly
And the hatchlings search for cookies;
There’s always something at the Isle of Wyrms-
-when Limbo isn’t in limbo!

Cathedral’s the place
Where dragons have settled
And shared their land with others
There’s plenty of forms and shapes to be found
Just watch out for Mr Spiky!

Where the gryphons cry
And the dragons fly
And the hatchlings search for cookies;
There’s always something at the Isle of Wyrms-
-as long as you don’t get eaten!

Suilven is the land
Of the Winter Wyrm
Full of mountains and snows
Dragons dance to the drums in her towering lair
But be careful to see where they step!

Where the gryphons cry
And the dragons fly
And the hatchlings search for cookies;
There’s always something at the Isle of Wyrms-
-as long as you watch out for tinies!

Isle of Gazoo
Is a land old and new
Rescued from destruction by tinies
A welcoming home, to many a folk
As long as you share your cookies!

Where the gryphons cry
And the dragons fly
And the hatchlings search for cookies;
There’s always something at the Isle of Wyrms-
-where baked goods are never safe!

Hatchie Haven is where
Many hatchies call home
In huts or caves or towers
There’s mountains, and lakes, and a marketplace too
If you can fit in the door!

Where the gryphons cry
And the dragons fly
And the hatchlings search for cookies;
There’s always something at the Isle of Wyrms-
-sizechanging has never been so handy!

The Isle is more
Than dragons and wyverns
There’s fae, and hedgies and tinies
All are welcome, no matter the size
Just don’t fill up the entire sim!

Where the gryphons cry
And the dragons fly
And the hatchlings search for cookies;
There’s always something at the Isle of Wyrms-
Big or small, we welcome you all!

 

So you want to be a dragon…

In my last post, I sort of touched on this idea – physically becoming what you see yourself as inside.  There’s many ‘kin that would jump on any such opportunity in a heartbeat, but to me it’s very much a “Be careful what you wish for” kind of deal.  A lot of stories written about the concept tend to set aside the consequences in favor of wish fulfillment, but there are way too many consequences to such a change to lightly write them all off.

Okay, so setting aside whether dragons could physically exist or not(square-cube law, flight, hexapod anatomy, etc), if they could, what would be the downsides of such an offer; to fly on the wings of your dreams?

First, there’s relearning how your body works, and the instincts built into it.  For the sake of this post we’ll also assume your mind has come along fully intact.  Humans spend the first several years of life learning how to move and control their bodies.  With most western dragons, you’re adding a tail and wings onto that, as well as a quadrapedic posture.  Admittedly, Easterns have it easier in that regard in that they don’t have the wings to deal with, but in exchange their bodies are much longer typically.  Even if you disregard all that and go anthro/furry, you still have the tail at minimum to learn to control, plus potentially wings.

In fact, let me expand on the idea of “I’ll go anthro and it’ll all work”.  How many shirts designed for wings have you seen?  How would you put any of them on, with the extra set of wings?  Even more important, what about tails and pants?  You would have to modify every pair with a extra button flap and hole.  And it’s not just clothing; think of all the times you’ve barely made a closing door or closed a door right behind you.  How many times do you think you’d forget you now have a tail and close it in the door?  This isn’t cloth or some unfeeling attachment, this is like having an arm or leg get trapped in a door!

Going back to the idea of having four-on-the-floor, environmental concerns would also be an issue.  Barring going “wild” and living off the land(which some people would like – fair enough) how would you get around?  Where would you live?  Many a dragon(including myself) envisions themselves as being larger than human-size.  You’d have to have custom-built dwellings right off the bat.  If you travelled, it would have to be by wing or foot, though admittedly the former would be preferred by many to driving anyways.  There’s also the matter of feeding yourself – those without handpaws(forepaws that double as hands) would have issues with manipulating any appliances, let alone the oversized ones an oversized dragon would need.

Then there’s the social issues.  Would you be alone, i.e. the only person to become dragon? You can bet any and all governments would be interested and you’d be swiftly disappeared, only to ever appear in tabloids.  If not, then what about your friends and loved ones?  How would your family or your wife/partner react if suddenly you were three times their size, in -all- aspects, let alone the other physical changes, and they remained the same?  (If you stayed human-sized, those still apply).

Even if you were not the only dragon(say 30% of the population changed) what if they were all different kinds of dragons?  Especially if those dragons couldn’t interbreed?  You’d basically be a species of 1, and once you were dead, your kind would be gone once more.  You wouldn’t be able to raise children other than adopting, and in this scenario, there’d be no dragon children for the most part, and raising a human child you run into all the difficulties mentioned above but multiplied.

To look at it another way, what if those same 30% changed, but not into different dragons, but the same type?  remember, there’s many many ‘kin out there, and in this sort of scenario, their chances are just as good as yours that theirs would be the type chosen.  So while you may not be a dragon, you still wouldn’t be your dragon.  It’d be a case of almost but not quite, which in some cases is even worse than not at all.

Leaving aside now the matter of friends and family, what about interaction with others and supporting yourself?  As a quote I once heard goes, a person is smart, but people are dumb panicky stupid animals.  If there wasn’t a war right off the bat between dragon and human, at minimum there would be discrimination the likes of which haven’t been seen in decades at least.  Assuming you get past all that, what sort of jobs could a dragon do, without massive retraining?  About the only ones feasible would be anything where you could work through a computer, as that could be scaled up easily enough and on the internet no one knows if you’re a dragon or not.

And then there would be the dragon groupies… I don’t think I need to explain further there.

So you’d essentially be:

  • Hated and/or feared by the general populace
  • Having to relearn your body like a toddler/amnesiac
  • Fighting any instincts native to the body – I admit I didn’t expand on this above, but this could vary greatly, and be very awkward e.g.puking up food for someone because you like them.  Yes, this is a real instinct among some birds.
  • Dealing with surroundings designed for other body designs and sizes
  • Potentially the only one of your kind, with no hope for offspring
  • Potentially leaving your friends and loved ones behind
  • Having to find new ways to support yourself

It wouldn’t be easy, and it wouldn’t be fair.  You’d be giving up a hell of a lot for what you get.  For some people, they would welcome this, even with all the caveats above. Me?  I’d have to give it a hard, long think, looking very closely at the details.

For one, if shapeshifting was involved/available, i.e. I could be dragon or human whenever I want, I’d be all for it.  It would avoid or mitigate some of the worst of the above, and give me the best of both worlds.

Now if it was a permanent change that was reversible, I would be on the fence about that. It would mean I could try it out, and if I find that it’s just not possible to make it work for me, I could go back to the same ol’ same ol’ as a final option.

A permanent change with no possibility of going back?  The drawbacks would have to be heavily accounted for, as I would not want to leave those I care about in the lurch, so to speak, for one thing.  For another, I wouldn’t want to hide all my life from government and “secret” agencies.  I also have way too active a mind for “going primitive” to work for me – I’d want my internets and entertainment.  At least, what with being in IT, as long as I have the right equipment working wouldn’t be an issue!

Now all this doesn’t mean you identify any less with being a dragon… it just means that it’s not going to be all sweetness and light to become one in reality, if the possibility becomes available. heck, given the whole transhumanism movement, someday humanity may be as varied as a Star Trek episode or a typical furry story. Until then however, if this were to become possible, think long and hard on what you may be giving up before you irrevocably lose it all.

Wants

“What do you want?”

As Babylon 5 demonstrated in its stories, this can be just as dangerous a question as “Who are you?” albeit for different reasons.  Unlike the post on that question however, I could not find a good quote to show this.  Still, it is worth examining, as unless you know what you want, you won’t know where you are in life in regards to that.  Really, it gives you a set of goals to work towards.

I suppose, for me what I most want(and is actually achievable) is: financial stability, a nice place to live, and someone who cares for me and that I care for.  Of course, there’s lesser wants, and unacheivable(in this world) dreams, but this is the foundation that underlies it all in adult life, and what ultimately probably most people probably desire.

Financial stability is, in the current world, simultaneously the easiest and the hardest to achieve.  My definition for this is no debt, a steady and secure job that pays well enough to live on, and savings to cover any emergencies.  The hardest part of this is finding a job, especially with the way the economy cratered several years ago.  Once that step is past however, the rest all fall into place like magnets lining up.

For me at least, this is one that I have managed to wrangle for myself.  From the time I graduated, I made paying off my debt my highest priority, and was fully debt-free after the first year of my current job.  This job is also a full employee position, not contracted, so from all appearances it is as stable and secure as I’ll find anywhere.  The savings is a natural consequence of both those put together, as anything I don’t spend can get put away rather than be eaten by interest on debt.  (Of course, there’s the issue of inflation eating at the savings, and the idea behind investing debt so overall you make money with inflation and interest accounted for, but that is a lot more complicated, and beyond the scope of where I’m looking at the moment).

Now the second thing, a nice place to live, is actually fairly easy to get.  The hard part is to achieve it without compromising the financial stability above.  Currently, I’ve been eyeing a couple places not too far from work; one rented, and one that I would have to enter a mortgage for, which means more debt.  Now a mortgage isn’t necessarily a debt=bad situation despite a kneejerk reflex to consider it thus, but it’s also a very long term commitment.  Rent, while effectively throwing money away, also preserves a certain freedom that owning property does not.  I also have a promotion at work that I am still waiting on(manpower situation, but suffice it to say I understand why and am content to wait), and I’m sort-of holding off on rocking the boat until that goes through and I see if my financial situation changes any.  I do know whatever place I get will need a dedicated room to be a library/collection room/study.

The third is the hardest, because it depends 100% on other people.  You can love someone with all your heart, but if they don’t care equally for you, it means jack shit, if you’ll pardon my french, and I’ve learned this from painful personal experience.  There’s millions and millions of people out there, but finding the ones that you click with is still difficult, especially if you’re an introvert of any sort.  If you’ve read my last few posts, it should be fairly obvious where I’m currently standing on this point by now.

Now if we step into the realm of the unachievable, if consequences do not apply and you discount anything that does not fall into the above three(for example, asking for $$$$$$ falls under financial stability) then being able to become my dragon self would definitely rank up there, especially if I could go back and forth ala the “Dragon and the George” series of books.  If it were permanent, then there’d be other factors I’d have to consider, among them if I’d be alone, and what would become of the people I care about – but that’s something to expand on in a different post.

Another big one would be exploring the universe, but I wouldn’t want to do it by myself.  All the worlds out there we have yet to see or discover,mankind’s true steps out into the great darkness; there’s so much envisioned by science fiction that I would love to see before I depart this mortal coil, but the way the world turned inward once the space race was over makes it seem like it may not happen before we wipe ourselves out.

Then on the other end of the scale is the minor things.  Like for example, I collect Transformers. As for a while it looked like my budget might be changing, I spent some time going over all the toys that came out before I was financially independent and figuring out which figures I still wanted – then went and bought almost all of them. At the point the only figures I want and don’t have are either so expensive I can’t justify it to myself for what it is, or aren’t out yet.

And so, like the other B5-style post asked, what do you want?  What are you doing to get that?  What progress have you made, and what lies ahead yet to do to take care of those wants?

Just something to think about.