The Super-Eclectic Reader Faves Playlist

A couple days ago, I asked you for just one song – and my, did you ever respond! Some of you couldn’t stop at just one song. (I get it, I do, it’s really hard to pick a single one.)

I’ve made a playlist of your songs. For those who recommended more than one, I chose your first song. It makes for a charmingly eclectic music mix!

Lies the Medical Establishment Tells About Trans Kids

I just got done reading a jaw-dropping, rage-inducing article on the lies some people in medicine tell about trans kids. This is one to keep around in case you run in to some jackass claiming that the majority of trans kids change their minds. Newsflash: they don’t.

The studies that say overwhelming numbers of trans kids change their minds about being trans? Horribly flawed. I mean, super mega flawed. Such as: [Read more…]

SF Snippet #4: Victory! Only, Not

Our War of Words continues! Who will have the victory?

Part One. Part Two. Part Three.


The spring convention came again. This time, neither poet could wander freely, alone or with a few close companions. A retinue followed each, waiting for the next salvo. Word (and words) had spread to other nations. Something had begun, no one was quite sure what, or what it might mean, or when it would continue, or how it would end. All wanted to be there to witness whatever it would be. Anticipation was fueled by a rumor that Disahnahle had crafted the perfect retort, in three phrases. If this were true, it would end speculation and prove him supreme. The Plains Cousins’ prestige would suffer a severe blow. Unless, of course, Nahkorah could rally.

Neither of them showed the strain of it. They seemed unconcerned. They wandered about with their followers, carefully avoiding each other, and took interest in the political and trade details of the convention. Nahkorah arranged for some winterberries to be delivered to her at regular intervals throughout their growing season and expressed her opinion regarding solutions to a poorly shielded part of the world. Disahnahle bargained for a few flat sheets of rare mudstone and lent his weight to an argument for aid to a beleaguered but unreliable ally a few solar systems away. There were other wars being fought, beside their own. They both seemed to care more for them.

The days of the convention rolled on toward their close. Disahnahle’s entourage began to feel discouraged, Nahkorah’s smug. Significant fractions of each felt that this waiting was simply a buildup toward something earth-shattering, and depending on whose side they took, either went about with prancing step or quivering nerves.

No one’s nerves were quivering more than Nahkorah’s. She hid them, but after two weeks of such pretense, close to coming unstrung, she plunged into a race. It was that, or fracture like those frost-torn cliffs that had almost killed her the year before. She went to the running ground where the plains swept into the foothills and let her stately stride uncoil into enormous bursts of speed along a serpentine track. She normally finished around the middle in these contests, but nervous energy trumped native skill this time and she streaked past the last turn with the rest of the field tasting her heels. They were certainly close enough to.

She pulled up, blown, lathered and exhausted, and saw Disahnahle perched on the last low hill. He looked like one of his tors.

If she could have gotten enough breath, she would have screamed at him. Of course he would deliver his precious three lines when she was too spent to stammer so much as a couplet. He deserved her horn through his neck. Only she would have to climb the hill for that, so it would have to wait.

He stared down at her as Plains and Mountain Cousins alike began clustering, silent, when they should have been cheering her victory. He could have at least allowed her that much before showing up like this, she thought.

When silence had rippled through them like wind through summer grass, he spoke:

Wistful I gaze

On your fleet eternity

Your shadows come only at night

It was the sweetest victory tribute she had ever heard. She had been wrong, at least about this Mountain Cousin. His single verse proved that he had the gift of extemporization, and that simplicity in its way could be just as lovely as eloquence. She thought it was quite gracious of him to forego his planned retort in favor of this. It just went to prove: poets may compete, but they cared about each other despite all that.

And so she was quite shocked later when she found out that no one else saw it quite that way.


Image is a sketch of a running unicorn.

Running unicorn. Image credit Bettina Rateitzak (CC BY 3.0)


Copyright 2016 by Dana Hunter. All rights reserved.

Okay, No, But Seriously, Gimme Topics!

The holidays are over, booo! That means it’s time for us all to get back to work. Personally, I can’t say boo to that, because it just means I’ll be doing more writing. But in order to do some really excellent writing for you lot over the course of 2016, I shall need topics. TOPICS!!!

Image shows a tabby kitten with blue eyes standing up and pawing at someone holding the camera. Caption says, "Want topix."

You can recommend pretty much anything: geology, science in general, religious nonsense, atheism, social justice, writing (fiction and non), and many other things. Do try to avoid most sports, because I haven’t any interest in them (although if the Seahawks somehow end up winning another Super Bowl, I might just get round to finishing that series on their championship rings). We can talk about Quidditch. Possibly horse racing. If it involves balls, though, you’re probably on your own. [Read more…]

A Hint for the Challenge!

I posed you a bit of a challenge yesterday: identify a birb blob. Alas, the challenge was too challenging! So I shall have to give you a further hint or few.

Now, keep in mind that our perching bird is quite common to the PNW wetlands. It’s sometimes seen in trees, but quite often is on the ground. And when you zoom in on its back, it looks like this:

Image shows a bird sitting in a bare tree. We can't determine color, as it's a silhouette. It is large, kind of blobby, with some fringy feathers popping out at odd angles. Its head is barely visible, but has a high dome and a long bill.


All right, I’m pretty sure at least a few of you will be able to identify it now. Good luck!

Hit Me With Your Best Song

We’ve all got a special song that we love, yeah? That song that always gets you right in the feels, or makes your feet tap, or that you would shout to the world if you could. Let’s share a song, then! One of my Facebook friends posted this, and it struck me as completely awesome: Give me one song that means a lot to you, and I’ll listen to it. It can be anything. It can be serious or corny or musically complex or dead simple. It can be uplifting or despairing or anything in between. It can be absolutely any genre at all. It doesn’t even have to be your favorite song of all time (like that’s so easy to pick!). Just a song that you love.

So here’s mine:

There you go. Now you know a song that I love, the first that springs to mind when someone asks me for just one song. What’s yours?

Image shows a gray cat on a lawn, standing on its hind legs. Its mouth is open and its paws are clasped by its cheek. Caption says, "Opera cat sings only soprano."

First Mountains of 2016, Plus a Challenge!

Welcome to 2016! Some of you are dealing with extreme weather and the fruits thereof. I hope that’s the worst you have to deal with, and that the rest of it goes rather more smoothly after this.

Seattle’s weather has decided to be magnificent. If you overlook the cold, it’s quite nice, really: abundant sunshine and super-crisp views of the mountains. Funny Diva turfed me from the house on New Year’s Day after we’d had a pizza and Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries party. We headed down to Magnuson Park for some views near sunset, and folks, the mountains were out. In force. [Read more…]

Hola, 2016! What Are We to Do With You?

Well, my darlings, we have made it to the future! Most of us should be giving 2016 the inquiring eyeball by now, wondering what it’s got in store. Some of us may be busy trying to tackle fresh resolutions whilst being horribly hungover. And, for some, it’s bidness as usual. However you’re spending the day, I hope it’s at the very least acceptable.

I’ve only two resolutions for this year: [Read more…]