Last update
2022-07-02 20:36:13

    First things first: we actually do know what elves called their dicks, because even the glorious JRRT couldn’t keep his hands out of his pants. The poetic term (yes, elves seem to have engaged in erotic poetry) would be gwî, but for everyday usage gwib was the preferred term. Puntl is provided as the coarse, moderately transgressive term, and likely what you would be invited to suck if you went down on a male elf. Alas, due to the ban on the Noldorin language, we have no surviving slang for Fëanor’s johnson. Second, if we assume that JRRT’s intention is the guiding light for inferred details of the history and function of Arda, we are left with several clues as to the genital features of elves. In early drafts of the Silmarillion and pre-LotR writings that would eventually give rise to the War of the Ring, JRRT called them “gnomes” rather than “elves,” a detail that reflects his internal monologue about them and is consistent with his para-LotR writings about them, including mutilations, betrayals, incest, genocide, colonial violence, and misotheistic rebellion. His mental image during the construction of Ardan history was almost certainly closer to the Rankin-Bass imagery than the Peter Jackson interpretation. Thus we are left to interpret the idea of gnomes– a Paracelsean ideology tied closely to alchemy– and of their Germanic and Norse equivalents, nature and household spirits that include classic Germanic dweorgs (that is, dwarves) but with the added qualification of tallness as a common indicator of worthiness. I discern here between dwarf-figures of Greek and British mythology, which tend to be lusty, massively endowed pranksters, and gnomes/dweorgs, which are rarely cast in a sexual light. Some textual support could be interpreted for the influence of Pan on the elves, given that Silvan elves (and their Rivendell cousins) are singing, dancing, merry-making, traveler-harassing figures throughout the books. If we adhere to this interpretation, elves are probably packing huge veiny wangs that could put your fucking eye out while you’re trying to slip em the suck. I feel that it is, however, more likely that JRRT would have viewed his elves as more romantic and less sexual. Certainly they reproduce at an exceedingly slow rate and for an incredibly small window of their adult lives. A Panic elf would be extremely unlikely to live for two thousand or more years and sire no more than three or four offspring. For this reason, we are most likely dealing with the less overt sexual characteristics of a Paracelsean elf, which rules out giant Priapus-style horse cocks that are eternally bone-ready, but leaves us with less to go on than we might need, if we’re gonna pour a giant silicone elf dick. Ah, but now we’ve alluded to reproductive evidence of elvish sexual activity, and down this road we find some very interesting possibilities. For one thing, the gnomes of Paracelsus were closely related to the concept of the homunculus, and tended to be sexless or at most secondary-masculine (think garden gnomes). We can assume, in combination with the romantic, Victorianistic leanings of JRRT, that male elves were not afflicted with unwanted boners, and found it fairly simple to reserve their sexual activity to intramarital intercourse. Additionally, in the extracurricular writing Laws and Customs of the Elves (LACE henceforth), we find some fascinating aspects of elvish sexuality laid bare. Elves are incapable, it seems, of adultery, which actually kills them. They are also heavily implied to be incapable of masturbation, and are explicitly hesitant to remarry after the death of a spouse, which carries over into the Silmarillion, when Fëanor’s father seeks permission from the spirit of his mother (who has died in childbirth) to remarry. Clearly, something about their physiology and/or psychology is not compatible in any way with promiscuity, and the consequences of promiscuity can be literally fatal. The lethality of sex can, I feel, be best comprehended as an immune function similar to rH incompatibility between mother and fetus. It would, from an evolutionary standpoint, benefit a male elf ( ellyn) to be certain that his offspring are actually his own, since their gestation and childhood are protracted and may consume a great deal of resources. This may have resulted in a gradual evolutionary arms race, in which an ellyn might conjugate not only his genetic material but also a dose of antibodies and/or chimeric B-cells, which are keyed to attack all sperm without his specific antigen set. In return, the female elf (or elleth) might perhaps develop her own antibody/B-cell dosage, but this begs the question of how to confer them to the male, since transmission of microbes from vagina to penis is much less reliable than the inverse. I am getting a horrible idea and I will refer back to this concept in a moment. So assuming that extramarital sex results in autoimmune-induced death similar to anaphylaxis in mechanism, we ask ourselves: what about the other compelling aspect of elvish sexuality, that of interbreeding with humans? Leaving out the question of DNA compatibility– which is demonstrated in canon, and which we must accept as legitimate if we are to consider this topic at all– we have a disturbing question to address. We have multiple incidents throughout the history of Beleriand and Middle-Earth of elven/human offspring, all of which occur between a Man and an elleth. Given that the two species are capable of creating not only hybrids but fertile hybrids (Elrond produced three offspring), it is foolish to imagine that in all of Ardan history there was never a potential ellyn-woman romance that resulted in offspring, unless there was something preventing reproduction between ellyn and woman that did not exist between man and elleth. The safest bet is not that all ellyn-woman romances remained chaste– anyone who’s met a teenager can tell you better than that– but that ellyn-woman sexual activity is incapable of producing offspring. This is extremely unusual, as the most obvious reason for sex-discriminant infertility is more likely to favor female humans than male humans. Human ova contain mitochondria, while human sperm consume their mitochondrial power for motility and do not confer mitochondrial DNA to their offspring. Either something is happening on an immune/cellular level, which would seem to conflict with our immunological theory of lethal adultery, or something is happening on the mechanical level– something which is, perhaps, related to the transference of female immune material to the male partner. Perhaps, to put it crudely, the ellyn just can’t get it up. In humans, the penis consists of several structures of erectile tissue which cradle the urethra between them. This specialized tissue is capable of interrupting venous return, creating penile engorgement and thus erection by trapping blood within the corpus cavernosum. This tissue is notoriously indiscriminant about stimuli, making it easy for male humans to ejaculate without even the participation of another human. Elves, on the other hand, can’t even masturbate, an activity so universal among species with external genitalia that it’s almost unimaginable for a species capable of poetry to be incapable of wanking. And yet human males can couple with elven females. This implies some weird-ass shit, so I suggest you pour yourself that drink right now. Male elves achieve erection by external constriction. To have sex, they need some biological equivalent of a cock ring. Whether their penises are “innies” or just flaccid except during intercourse, they are incapable of restricting venous return on their own… and yet the elven vulva must be compatible to some degree with penetration, or else man/elleth coupling wouldn’t produce offspring. One may, if one is willing to consider extreme possibilities, entertain the idea that the elven vulva may exhibit some mechanical trait that assists the ellyn in achieving erection by constriction, by restricting venous return through strangulation. Something that would not put off human males universally, although it might make man/elleth couplings more rare and account for the relative scarcity of elf/human offspring. Something that would make it impossible for an ellyn to penetrate a woman, or to achieve orgasm and ejaculation with a human female. Something that would even allow the ellyn to contribute internal disposition of antibodies and B-cells reliably, potentially through urethral penetration of the penis. The elvish vulva, my friends, consists of outer labia, inner labia, a vaginal vestibule opening on a penetrable vaginal canal, and a set of tentacles. In elven intercourse, the vulval tentacles constrict and penetrate the flaccid penis, simultaneously permitting/inducing erection and depositing immune bodies deep in the genitourinary tract, most likely the bladder, where they can swim up the ureters to the renal anastomosis and infiltrate the bloodstream. The erect elvish penis is then able to deposit its genetic– and immune– material within the vagina. Human females, having no corollary to these tentacles, can arouse a male elf and even engage in non-PIV sexual activity, but can never obtain genetic material from male elves, and therefore no ellyn/woman pregnancies occur. For human females, this means you can have a hot elf boyfriend that can never get you pregnant, but he’s likely to leave you eventually for somebody who can actually get him off. Male elves probably got the fuck around in Middle-Earth, since they could chow down on human pussy for decades before settling down with a nice elleth who would get knocked up as soon as they exchanged fluids. For human males, this means that you’re totally capable of landing a hot lady elf, as long as you don’t mind her tentacles crawling up your dick every time you shark her in the ass while she’s asleep, and as long as you don’t mind that she can totally cheat on you and in fact might have chosen to fuck you specifically because she can screw around behind your back without breaking out in a fatal case of hives. Aragorn was one kinky-ass fucker. And if you read all the way through this drunken, giggling spiel, the silicone elf dick you’re looking for is of normal to generous proportion, but it’s strangled up and down with simulated tentacles, or at least constricted by a really tight cock ring. I thought way the fuck too much about this. I consulted the LACE about this. Fuck every last one of you for goading me into this nightmare of grisly overanalytic humiliation. I hope all your girlfriends catch you.

    SomethingAwful poster “elise the great”, in the “Ask me about making horrific silicone fantasy dildos!” thread  (via canuckerrant)

    “Thank you all for listening, and I hope you’ll keep listening. I’ll still be here, the voice of your community, coming to you wherever you listen. This all mattered to me, every minute of it. I hope it mattered to you too. Stay tuned next for a woman’s voice listing a bunch of names for some reason and then saying a proverb. And from my Night Vale, to yours. Good night, Night Vale, good night.”

    — Episode 210 - Ten Years Later

    World Building

    Creating Land


    ⟿ what is grown in abundance? how common is farmland? where is the farmland?


    ⟿ what kind of buildings? how tall/spacious? what are they made of? how well made? how well planned?


    ⟿ what wild animals are lurking in the area? hunting? any animals affecting the livestock or agriculture?


    ⟿ desert? tundra? grassland? forest? savanna?

    bodies of water

    ⟿ seas? lake? ponds? rivers? fresh water/salt water? fishing? keep in mind, settlements are often built near bodies of water


    ⟿ dry? rainy? temperate? tropical? polar? how have people adjusted to this climate?


    ⟿ altitude? how does the altitude affect lifestyle?


    ⟿ rocky? types of rocks?


    ⟿ mountains? valleys? plateaus? plains? hills? glaciers? peninsulas? volcanos? canyons?

    latitude / longitude

    ⟿ location on planet? how does it affect other elements of land?


    ⟿ common domesticated animals? common animal usages?


    ⟿ any valuable minerals / metals? are they mined regularly? how are they used?

    natural disasters

    ⟿ earthquake? tornado? volcano? duststorm? flood? hurricane? tsunami? how often do these occur? protocols?


    ⟿ how many people? how dense is the population? how does the population affect surrounding nature?


    ⟿ what is abundant? scarce? how are they used? how available are they?

    sacred land

    ⟿ religiously important land? historical importance? widely accepted as sacred? how is it honored?


    ⟿ good or bad for vegetation? rocky?

    tectonic activity

    ⟿ earthquake frequency? volcano frequency? trenches?


    ⟿ how common are maps? how accurate? how long have they been around? who makes them?


    ⟿ what is abundant? scarce? what grows easily? with difficulty? what is commonly foraged? who forages? plant types? tree types?


    “Writing, if nothing else, is a bridge between two people, a bridge made of language. And language belongs to all of us. If I enjoy a poem, that just means I am recognizing within it something of myself, something I must already possess. Therefore, to love a poem is to love a part of myself revealed to me by another person…I really believe that writing is the closest thing we have to true magic. Where else, but in words, can we discover each other out of thin air?”

    Ocean Vuong (via poetsandwriters)

    OKAY, so as a former lit major (with, to be clear, a master's in literature), I have some really fun information to share with the class for this last installment of Daily Dracula.

    Now, first thing's first, I'm going to post the section I'm talking about specifically so we can refer back to it more easily. Namely:

    In a voice which, though low and almost in a whisper seemed to cut through the air and then ring round the room he said:— "How dare you touch him, any of you? How dare you cast eyes on him when I had forbidden it? Back, I tell you all! This man belongs to me! Beware how you meddle with him, or you'll have to deal with me." The fair girl, with a laugh of ribald coquetry, turned to answer him:— "You yourself never loved; you never love!" On this the other women joined, and such a mirthless, hard, soulless laughter rang through the room that it almost made me faint to hear; it seemed like the pleasure of fiends. Then the Count turned, after looking at my face attentively, and said in a soft whisper:— "Yes, I too can love; you yourselves can tell it from the past. Is it not so? Well, now I promise you that when I am done with him you shall kiss him at your will. Now go! go! I must awaken him, for there is work to be done." ... They simply seemed to fade into the rays of the moonlight and pass out through the window, for I could see outside the dim, shadowy forms for a moment before they entirely faded away. Then the horror overcame me, and I sank down unconscious.

    Now there is a Lot to unpack here, and a lot of people have already pointed out the surface layer homoeroticism (I mean, he says "love" outright and clearly means it), but there's some stuff I haven't seen anyone mention yet.

    First of all, if you haven't seen it yet, please take a look at this post which shows Bram Stoker's notes on the novel. The important takeaway is that Bram Stoker had one line of dialogue from pretty much the very beginning: "This man belongs to me." It repeats thrice, and well before the characters are more than "Old Count."

    What this says to me is that Stoker was, like any of us, writing his novel to write that One Scene that just fucks so hard. This scene was written to be horny. It is meant to be. Stoker wrote this scene with his whole dick in the way of all the horror greats. He's my hero. By this time, Stoker had already at least acknowledged his own leanings (see Stoker's love letters to Walt Whitman, the first of which was written well before he wrote Dracula), so we can guess that he had this image and wanted to see it on paper for himself. (Good for him, and Same.)

    Straight audiences would have seen Jonathan's feminization by the narrative and the Count's clearly sexual interest in him as horrifying (cowards), but queers are and have always been queer. And I suspect they all read this scene in the same way we're reading it now. BUT they had an extra bit of info that we've since lost track of.

    In the peak of epistolary writing, there was a bit of well-known shorthand. (If you've seen Mamma Mia, this is the equivalent to the "dot dot dot" in the mom's diary from her slut phase.) In epistolary novels, when your heroine is alone with a man, and she says she swoons... She got laid. Now, how far it went, I couldn't say, but this was At Least heavy making out, if not full on sex (I suspect it may have been up for interpretation, but I don't know). My professor pointed this out with a young woman swooning while alone in a carriage with a guy she was kind of seeing. "She says she swooned because this letter is to her father figure, but the audience would have known exactly what she meant."

    So Jonathan swoons, and when he wakes up, he is undressed and in his own bed. The readers at the time would have immediately read this as a sexual assault.

    For a long time, I was confused by how passive Jonathan is throughout this part of the novel, but he is playing the role of the maiden fair, trapped by the diabolical (and much older) seducer. And then, he is in survival mode as he is assaulted more than once, his virtue stolen before he can marry his beloved.

    I mean, God, you have this whole romantic build, the count saves the maiden Jonathan and plans to "awaken him, for there is work to be done." And then Jonathan swoons, and the Count carries him to bed? Not to put too fine a point on it, but... well, it really only makes sense if Dracula DID wake Jonathan up and... made his claim abundantly clear. Clear enough, too, for Jonathan to feel like his "gloomy" rooms are in fact his only sanctuary. And like... Jonathan was undressed by the Count. That really does mean exactly what it sounds like.

    So uh. Yeah, after that supremely possessive display and declaration of love, the Count fucks Jonathan (as with all maidens of the time, his consent is... dubious. Would he consent if he were able? We'll never know tbh) and carries him (undressed) to bed. Bram Stoker knew EXACTLY what he was doing, and I hope you all enjoy that fact. I know I will. ;D

    ETA: Sources for my information about swooning are in my reblog, but you can also find them here, here, here (this blog post is referred to in more than one article), and here, and this one references this exact scene directly.

    “To claim that hunter-gatherers perceive their environment as a “wilderness”—in contrast to a domesticity that one would be hard put to define—is to deny that they are aware that, in the course of time, they modify the local ecology by their techniques of subsistence. Over recent years, for example, Aboriginals have been protesting to the Australian government against its use of the term “wilderness” to qualify the territories that they occupy and by so doing frequently justifying the creation of natural reserves that they do not want. The notion of a “wilderness,” with all its connotations of terra nullius, of an original and preserved naturalness, an ecosystem to be protected against the degradations liable to be introduced by human beings, certainly runs contrary to the Aboriginals’ own concept of the environment and the multiple relations that they have established with it, and above all it ignores the subtle transformations that they have produced in it. As a leader of the Jawoyn of the Northern Territory said, when part of their land was converted into a natural reserve, “Nitmiluk national park is not a wilderness…, it is a human artefact. It is a land constructed by us over tens of thousands of years through our ceremonies and ties of kinship, through fire and through hunting.” Clearly, for the Aboriginals, as for other hunting peoples, the opposition between wild and domesticated is not very meaningful, not only because of their lack of domesticated animals but above all because they inhabit the entire environment as a spacious and familiar dwelling place, rearranged to suit successive generations with such discretion that the touch of its inhabitants becomes almost imperceptible.”

    — Philippe Descola - Beyond Nature and Culture


    “The best translations into English do not, in fact, read as if they were originally written in English. The English words are arranged in such a way that the reader sees a glimpse of another culture’s patterns of thinking, hears an echo of another language’s rhythms and cadences, and feels a tremor of another people’s gestures and movements.”

    — Ken Liu, “Translator’s Postscript” to The Three Body Problem by Liu Cixin


    ““But I didn’t and still don’t like making a cult of women’s knowledge, preening ourselves on knowing things men don’t know, women’s deep irrational wisdom, women’s instinctive knowledge of Nature, and so on. All that all too often merely reinforces the masculinist idea of women as primitive and inferior – women’s knowledge as elementary, primitive, always down below at the dark roots, while men get to cultivate and own the flowers and crops that come up into the light. But why should women keep talking baby talk while men get to grow up? Why should women feel blindly while men get to think?”

    — Ursula K Le Guin, from What Women Know
    (via karthagonensis)

    “Part of the dream of queer is that it potentially has no opposite. Straight is the opposite of gay. Queer is a rejection of both. Queer was one of the first words that spoke to me as the dream I needed in order to survive. I don’t know if trans is the same as queer, I mean I know it is and I know it isn’t—I know there can be a gloriousness to the potential of trans as a reimagining beyond conventional gender expectations. If queer laid my foundations, a trans analysis rearranged the structures and gave me the space to breathe again. Transgender: to bend, mend, extend, and transcend.

    The explosion of trans identities in the early-2000s challenged my own assumptions, including the assumptions that once felt like challenges, and it wasn’t just the transfeminine spectrum that gave me hope in fluidity. I’d always believed that masculinity could only be the enemy, but then there were the trans fags who showed me something beyond the predetermined, a masculinity negotiated and transformed, a flamboyance through choosing a bodily language of one’s own making. A freedom, but not a freedom from accountability. The meanings of queer and trans are constantly shifting—this is part of the allure. At once identities that declare an end to borders, and identities that constantly build walls, challenging enough to derail conversations and at the same time empty enough to use in the name of a TV show or nonprofit.

    One problem with the politics of representation is that often it’s about who is represented, but not what. I’m not saying we don’t ever need an us and them. I know this is how many of us find one another, dance with the scars into arms that might hold not only to harm. I don’t think there always needs to be an invitation to join us, I don’t think this has to be the case, but I do think this should always be an option. I do think a world without borders is a dream we must hold onto—personally, politically, intimately, explosively, expressively.”

    There is incredible beauty to the naming and claiming so often found in these worlds, but also there’s a frightening territorialism. I don’t want to become the cops, I want to end policing in all its forms. This is the dream that queer and trans worlds have helped me to imagine.”

    mattilda bernstein sycamore, the freezer door

    “Imagine a world of cities with mottled yards full of chestnut, pecan, or breadfruit trees, below them perennial raspberry bushes or the dusky crimson and pale yellow of pomegranates, trellises wrapped in grapes and squash, and lower, lifting out from healthy obsidian soil, a palette of landrace tomatoes and peppers. Roofs are coated with patterned raised beds. Side-yards feature fishponds, which receive all kinds of manure, fattening up their inhabitants. Greenbelts surround all cities, as popular planning converts sprawling suburbs into farmed swards. High-speed trains link bigger cities to smaller ones, smaller ones to capillary lines leading to outlying hamlets kitted out with high-speed internet. Ranchers manage grasslands roamed by a bouquet of native breed animals that churn cellulosic matter into the soil, producing negative-CO2 milk and meat. Intercalated forest-fields overproduce walnut, fodder, and myriad maize and wheat varieties. In some places, the burgeoning low-tech of perennial cereals inject root structures far deeper than people are tall into prairies. There is a lot to do beyond farming: Skilled technicians live in the countryside and smaller villages and estates, and manage high-voltage smart grids, local renewable storage systems, and decentralized windmills, while artisans and decentralized manufacturing processes local agricultural materials, supplementing and replacing – where it makes sense – large-scale mass-market industrial goods.”

    — Max Ajl, A People’s Green New Deal


    “I remembered once, in Japan, having been to see the Gold Pavilion Temple in Kyoto and being mildly surprised at quite how well it had weathered the passage of time since it was first built in the fourteenth century. I was told it hadn’t weathered well at all, and had in fact been burnt to the ground twice in this century. “So it isn’t the original building?” I had asked my Japanese guide. “But yes, of course it is,” he insisted, rather surprised at my question. “But it’s been burnt down?” “Yes.” “Twice?” “Many times.” “And rebuilt.” “Of course. It is an important and historic building.” “With completely new materials.” “But of course. It was burnt down.” “So how can it be the same building?” “It is always the same building.” I had to admit to myself that this was in fact a perfectly rational point of view, it merely started from an unexpected premise. The idea of the building, the intention of it, its design, are all immutable and are the essence of the building. The intention of the original builders is what survived. The wood of which the design is constructed decays and is replaced when necessary. To be overly concerned with the original materials, which are merely sentimental souvenirs of the past, is to fail to see the living building itself.”

    — Douglas Adams (via valarhalla)


    “theseus is a bitch” - douglas adams

    “Whatever happens to the driver’s portion of the fare, the company’s cut is tax free. Like many digital companies, Uber has set up subsidiaries around the world. Uber Canada, for example, pays no tax because it makes no income. If you take an Uber in Canada your credit card payment goes to Uber BV, incorporated in the Netherlands. Uber BV takes in a lot of revenue, but does not make a profit (and so pays no tax) because it pays a large license fee for the intellectual property it uses to another Uber subsidiary, Uber International CV. Intellectual property licensing fees are not taxable in the Netherlands, so Uber International also operates tax free, and can transfer its money to its headquarters in Bermuda. For now, like other global technology programs, Uber’s pile of money in Bermuda is not being moved back to the USA because Uber does not want to pay the corporate tax such a move would trigger. The arrangement, called “Double Dutch” because of the two Dutch subsidiaries, shows the lengths to which Uber will go to avoid contributing to the cities where it operates.”

    — Tom Slee, What’s Yours is Mine: Against the Sharing Economy


    “I briefly considered making calcoins a real thing in tandem with this update. I asked somebody how bitcoins worked, and the absolute worst case scenario happened. Bitcoins were explained to me. So obviously I axed that idea.”

    — Andrew Hussie (via revolutionator)


    are you telling me that seven years ago andrew hussie almost got into crypto. that this was another timeline we just narrowly avoided.