Thursday Tropes: Pretty Hurt

Part of my new attempt at a schedule, I’m going to aim to talk about a TV trope on Thursdays. I say “TV” because it’s largely inspired by the website TV Tropes, but these might come from books, movie, TV, games, any media or entertainment for mass consumption there is, really. Plus, Thursday Tropes has some nice alliteration to it.

I know, I know, today’s Friday, deal with it. I’m just getting this thing started! (Glee and The Killing spoilers ahead.)

Also, check out the new look! What do you think? The background is from Cutest Blog on the Block.

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Photo Challenge: Opportunity

I’ve got some catching up to do!

First up, two Fridays ago the Photo Challenge was “Opportunity.” Two pictures jumped out at me. First up, I very much enjoy this picture by whatwecallearth.

In high school, I was something of a journal addict. I loved buying little book-style journals like this, which I’d then start filling with journal entries or stories and so forth. Some I liked so much I wanted to save them for something special, but of course I’d never find something I considered special enough for how pretty the journal was. So between my things and old boxes at my parents house, I have several books like this that are either partially filled, barely filled, or empty entirely. But seriously, for high school and even college me, slap a good quote about dreams on a nice picture and bind it and I was sold!

But it’s this picture by omelchronicles that’s inspiring me to write. Anyone who writes is always thinking much further ahead in their story in some aspects than is practical–admit it, we all wonder about what the sequel(s) to our unpublished works will be! Being no exception and quite guilty of this myself, this image put me in mind not just of a sequel to Ghostlight, but the book that would follow that one! Bette’s heading off to college somewhere–I’ve not yet determined if the things that happen to her in the intervening time would compel her to enroll somewhere close by or as far away as she can get–and faces the daunting day that is freshman move-in day.


Stretching out like the dubious opening shot of a movie, monotonous in its repetition of doors and flourescent ceiling lights, the uniform hallway was only broken up by a water fountain and an exit sign pointing to a stairway. I had a fleeting impulse to use it.

But no, room 212 was my destination. I adjusted my grip on the box under one arm, and dragged my rolling suitcase behind me as I headed down the hallway, checking the numbers on each door until I came to it. Our Resident Advisor had gone with an 80’s movies theme for the nametags on the doors. My name was photoshopped into the starring role on a poster for The Breakfast Club, and my new roommate Callie Thornton was getting top billing for Ghostbusters. I snorted at that, amused at my near miss for the more fitting movie. At least it wasn’t Ghost. …was that from the 80’s? 

Unlocking the door revealed a room that was still empty, as expected. Callie and I had emailed a few times over the summer, and I knew she wasn’t due on campus until that afternoon. Which gave me plenty of time to set up my half of the room however I liked. First things first, getting my dad’s help in de-bunking those beds once he finished parking the car.

So for now, it was time to put my things down and get used to the furniture and walls that would be here everyday until May. My new home. A new start.

And, I could only hope, significantly less death and fewer ghosts. There would always be the one, of course, my constant companion, but that was and would always have to be an exception. There was nothing to be done there–nothing I could bring myself to do, that is.

I had hopes for it being a calmer existence here. No small town with a long history, no haunted tree at the heart of it, no trails of where my brother had tread before me, in life or death. A city campus, days full of classes, probably finding a spot for myself on their school paper, this was what I wanted and what I needed: the opportunity for my life to be normal once again.

Words matter, words have power

This a slightly edited post I made on another journal a few years ago, but the despite the passing of time, the message and intent are still important to me.


There is always drama. Always. Stupid, pointless, useless drama, and were these actual in-person interactions,  it would never happen. Because in person, you would never get away with (or feel like you could get away with) the things people say when they’re online. There are no interruptions, no gasps of shock, tears of pain, none of it. The human element is removed, and the reactions are filtered. Online interactions always lose something in translation, allow certain kinds of actions to be followed through while excising others entirely from the equation. And at some point, we take advantage of and count on that.

You can yell and everyone hears you. You can scream and rant and insult, and no one even has the option of cutting you off with a well-earned slap across the face when you’ve gone too far. That line that exists in social interaction, that prevents us from saying the horrible, wretched things we would say if we had nothing stopping us, it does not exist. So we say those things, because we can. We know we can.

Online interaction proves more than anything else that words can hurt. They can cut and hurt and leave marks far longer than physical attacks often can. The scars you don’t see, the blood you don’t feel on your hands.

It isn’t brave. It isn’t “right.” It isn’t okay to do it just because you can.

When the rules, the guidelines, the accepted parameters of how we treat one another, are taken away from an interaction, a conversation, a relationship, are no longer there and visible, we can become monsters. We can be horrible, we can harm, we can destroy, and no one can stop us. Does it matter? Is it liberating? It is corrupting?

Maybe it’s all of those. But, “when nothing we do matters, all that matters is what we do.” The same holds true here. Because that line doesn’t exist, because it is so easily forgotten, because you cannot see the face, hear the voice, sense the palpable mood in a room full of people when you speak–because of all these things, our decorum, our treatment of others with respect, matters all the more. Because it is so easy to ignore, and to act as though I that center around which this universe revolves. I am the one talking, and I am the one that you will listen to. Because I command your attention, because I am the most important one here. I. I. I. I.

This isn’t not true, but it isn’t true, and it isn’t false.

The standards we give ourselves for how we treat one another are not set in stone. They are not oxygen–they are not a hard fact, a thing we must acknowledge or else we die. They are things we create. They are mutable, adaptable, changeable, and elective. This is why they are so important, because they exist only when we create them. We chose how we treat one another, how we interact and acknowledge one another.

My words are power, written and spoken alike, and I will treat them with the respect that they deserve, with the care that they require because they are so dangerous, so deadly, so wonderful.

Other people deserve our respect. This is not a fact because nature makes it so. This is a fact, to me, because I make it so. This is why it matters more.