Giant ancient shlonger, an excuse to eat candy, and a ban on eating dogs

My anxiety has been on a rampage for a couple days. I have really severe money-related anxiety, regardless of the reality of the money situation, and I have discovered I absolutely cannot rationalize my way through stress surrounding it. I have to see myself being anxious about money and just say, “That is an anxiety problem.” And then treat it as such.

This ties into business generally. I keep trying to edge back into working on publishing matters, but the emotional burden is so intense. It’s a minefield of triggers turning me insensate. A real issue.

I emailed around looking for local therapists who do EMDR, since it was recommended to me specifically as a treatment that might help, but I have not had any luck.

On the bright side, I can safely say the level of my anxiety has nothing to do with the precarity of my money situation. It’s just one of my brain’s favorite hits to play when I’m freaking out. I have a few categories of Brain’s Greatest Hits off the anxiety playlist: I’m So Fat, I’m a Bad Mom, We Are Going to Lose Everything We Have, My Husband Secretly is Sick of Me, etcetera.

The fact I only took a couple three days to work through this protracted panic and realize it *is* just a panic is actually kinda record turnaround though? It’s encouraging to see growth in myself. I am not yet where I want to be.

In the absence of EMDR for now, I sincerely think I just need to work slowly, but persistently, work on mindfulness with my support system, and maybe even write up a few affirmations to remind myself of what’s going on when my head’s too muzzy to distinguish Brain’s Greatest Hits from Actual Reality.


Lawyers, Guns, & Money shared a really interesting article about the quality of AI writing essays. It’s so good, I don’t want to summarize it or bury it. It’s not very long. Give it a read, Trek nerds.


A new publication asserts that the Cerne Abbas Giant may represent Hercules (Ars Technica).

A major attraction of Dorset, England, is the Cerne Abbas Giant, a 180-foot-tall figure of a naked man wielding a large club carved with chalk into a hilltop. A pair of historians offers a strong case that this figure was originally meant to represent Hercules from Greek mythology, perhaps to inspire West Saxon armies, who could have used the site as a muster station. […]

“It’s become clear that the Cerne giant is just the most visible of a whole cluster of early medieval features in the landscape,” said co-author Helen Gittos, an early medieval historian at the University of Oxford, told The Guardian. “I think we’ve found a compelling narrative that fits the giant into the local landscape and history better than ever before, changing him from an isolated mystery to an active participant in the local community and culture.”

There are whole levels to how much I love this. First of all, because I love getting a sense of prehistoric civilization. It’s really easy to imagine calling some artists together to work on a giant penis dude to get the Saxon armies hyped. Imagine showing up to your muster station on day one of the new battle against whoever you’re fucking with this time, and y’all have this giant art piece to inspire you.

Sincerely, it makes me feel so vividly in the time-and-place. Knowing that they were decorating these spaces with a ~mood~ in such a way makes me think of, like, conventions in Las Vegas.

Also, lol penis.


A bit of frippery perhaps. A doctor on People Magazine suggested super-sour Warheads for interrupting panic attacks. It sounds silly, but I can actually understand what he’s getting at here. People seem to misinterpret it as “eat candy and forget about your problems,” but I think this is just a literal interruption to a maladaptive chemical feedback loop.

Sour to induce whatever chemicals sour induces (maybe we register it like pain? adrenaline? dopamine?), and then inducing different facial expressions will also change the chemical process in your brain… Yeah, I see what he’s getting at. It’s using candy like medication.

And it’s not denying whatever issues are at hand, either. Like, panic attacks aren’t necessarily about something immediate. You can have a meltdown over a trigger when nothing is going on. Or maybe you’re panicking over a fair issue, but the size of the panic isn’t appropriate. Snapping yourself out of it with a Warhead isn’t a bad idea.

This is the kind of frippery I enjoy.


Dog meat is officially illegal in South Korea. (NPR) Although this seems like an easy win from an animal welfare standpoint, I’d like to offer another perspective: dog meat is a food associated with lower income communities, rural areas, the like. I think it’s kind of a hardship food that has grown traditions around it, as often happens.

While we’re celebrating dog safety, I hope there is also no rush to increase policing on socially marginalized groups. Changing traditions takes time. And I think it’s kinda universal in all countries that more cops in poor neighborhoods is a bad idea.

The bill would make the slaughtering, breeding, trade and sales of dog meat for human consumption illegal from 2027 and punish such acts with 2-3 years in prison. But it doesn’t stipulate penalties for eating dog meat.

The bill would offer assistance to farmers and others in the industry for shutting down their businesses or shifting to alternatives. Details of outlawing the industry would be worked out among government officials, farmers, experts and animal rights activists, according to the bill.

“Details are going to be worked out later now that we’ve passed the law” is always worrying. I guess it’s normal. But I’m normally worried about government compassion for the people it governs.


This column by John Cassidy in The New Yorker makes me wanna yark.

Simply put, they greatly improve the welfare of countless Americans, including some of the neediest ones. In many ways, indeed, keeping the jobless rate low and the labor markets tight is the most effective and cost-efficient welfare policy there is.

Actually, welfare is the best welfare policy.

Democrats are so wrong-headed by insisting on the marriage between work and human rights. Not everyone can work. Work should not be perilous. Life doesn’t have to be this hard. I’m steamed.

This is the stuff they’re gonna shove down our gullets leading up to the election. We’re supposed to be motivated to vote Blue by this human-hating capital-loving nonsense.


The Navajo Nation objects to human remains interred on the Moon. (NPR) Frankly, I agree. I kinda don’t want humans chucking random junk up there, period. Why in the world do we feel we have any right to littering the Moon with commercial payloads?

I believe in human expansion into the stars someday, but right now we’re only capable of doing it in the ways we know how: disrespectfully, exploitatively, and commercially.


Breivik is suing Norway for human rights abuse (AJE). This was a mass shooter from a few years back. This incident really shook me.

I am opposed to solitary confinement. If he’s in solitary confinement, that is a human rights abuse. But this sort of thing shows me that I do have limitations in who I think is human. I’m like, does a man who hunted teenager have human rights? The answer should be yes if I were idealogically consistent to the end, but here we are.

My most American stance is that someone like Breivik (not even all mass shooters, but ones like Breivik) should not occupy any societal resources or time at all, and it’s unfortunate he ever got off that island to be put in solitary confinement. Whatever happens to him after that is hardly a tragedy.

Breaking: I am a petty human like the rest of y’all.


Margot Robbie is happy to see Harley Quinn mythologized and reinterpreted by Lady Gaga (Variety). I am too.

I’m thinking more broadly about Robbie and Gerwig’s career goals, though. From Robbie in this article:

“We want to make more films that have the effect that ‘Barbie’ has. I don’t know if it has to be ‘Barbie 2.’ Why can’t it be another big, original, bold idea where we get an amazing filmmaker, a big budget to play with, and the trust of a huge conglomerate behind them to go and really play? I want to do that.”

I’m sure they would. Gerwig and Robbie have made it clear that their goal is to win at this system we have right now. They’ve identified their gender as the only thing standing in their way of winning at this system.

I thought Barbie would make a legitimate run at the awards seasons, but it kinda looks like Pretty Things – the “feminist” movie made by men about a dead pregnant woman who becomes sex-crazy after having her fetus’s brain put into her body – is going to take a lot of the awards I expected Barbie to get.

Losing to some guy making some weirdo movie about his idea of a sexy weird woman is probably going to validate their worldview – that it’s hard being a woman. It also validates my worldview, which is that the system is a wreck, they’re wasting their time trying to be good at an abusive system, and I hope they are happy with the work itself because how you spend your days is how you spend your life and the work might be the only reward they get.

Well, and a gazillion dollars. Being a white blonde woman in a man’s world isn’t without benefits. People wouldn’t beg to be picked if it wasn’t good, yeah? And I’m sure Gerwig and Robbie are making enough money to buy their own validation at this point?


Thank goodness Peter Jackson understood The Lord of the Rings. The studio wanted him to kill off a Hobbit. (The Guardian)

I think the level of studio intervention in the Hobbit movies is why they’re so terrible. Everything is rushed, the studio got its wants, nothing makes sense with the canon, and the movies aren’t popular.

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