The Summer Solstice and Anglo-Saxon Poetry

…or how to make a diy ritual when the cookbook won’t do

The Summer Solstice approaches. This should be going out on the day before, but if you live ahead of EDT(US) then you may already be in there. If so, happy solstice! If, like me, you’re still waiting, happy solstice eve! The difficulty with the solar festivals, for me, is how exactly to celebrate them. Halloween, Yule, I know how to celebrate those. So, often, the solstices and equinoxes don’t get the same pomp and circumstance in my house. I wanted to change that this year.

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12Days six: Watanuki’s Fiery Skies

Ever read xxxHolic? It’s old now, I suppose. I loved it when it was coming out, and owned nearly all of it. It turns out the reason the ending made no sense was simply because I’d missed a volume, oops. I decided to re-read it this year, in an attempt to sell it when I was finished. I have a few volumes left to go, but I did sell them, alas. I needed the space, and there’s a lot of xxxHolic.

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12 Days Five: Nyarko-san’s Time of Her Life

And now for something a bit different. This deck is called Arcane Bullshit, and it’s pretty weird. Occultists need senses of humor, or else we risk becoming the asshole at the party talking about chakras and Kundalini. Let’s not do that. So for today’s post I wanted to talk about Nyarko-San: The Crawling Chaos. So it seemed appropriate to dig this deck out. Continue reading “12 Days Five: Nyarko-san’s Time of Her Life”

12 Days Four: Motoko Kusanagi’s Devilish Entrapment

Let’s talk about Ghost in the Shell. I’ve been watching it most of my life, I think. Remember when The Sci-Fi Channel (not Syfy) did anime marathons on Saturdays? I was there every day. I saw some weird stuff, some of which I’ve still never seen again. And I saw the original Ghost in the Shell. Honestly, as with a lot of film-length anime from that time, it’s pretty disjointed. Akira-syndrome, I guess we’d call it, where there was just too much stuff, and not enough time. Well, when I was in college Stand Alone Complex redefined GitS for me, and I finally got around to Arise this year.

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12 Days three: Haruka’s Fiery Struggle

For day three let’s talk about Sailor Moon Crystal. The second series aired this year. It’s been a very long time since I watched an anime week to week, but I did with this one. The story arc covered by the second series was always one of my favorites. I loved Haruka, even in high school. So everything from the news of which arc they were covering to that crazy ED about Haruka and Michiru got me hyped up.

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12 Days Two: Handa-Sensei’s Return to the Earth

Let’s talk about Barakamon. I started it this year, though I haven’t quite finished it yet. As a guy who does amateur calligraphy and once studied Japanese, I’m all over a show like Barakamon. Wikipedia reminded me, just now, that the title itself refers to “an easy going guy,” which Handa-Sensei certainly is not. As our client, what can we tell him about himself?

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12 Days One: Hanekawa’s Sword Problem

It’s the first day of the annual 12 Days tradition. I’ve got a gimmick this year. I’m doing tarot readings for characters in anime. If you’ve got a tarot deck lying around somewhere, you should give things like this a try. I started doing it when I was watching The Last Temptation of Christ several years ago. It helped me understand the characters very well. Our first client is Hanekawa Tsubasa from Bakemonogatari. I rewatched this series this year. In this case, I taught the first two episodes. I’ll only do readings for shows I watched this year.

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Tolkien, Modernist

It’s not actually a revolutionary idea to suggest Tolkien is a modernist, but it’s still so counter to everything he said and tried to do that it’s worth blogging about. And, anyway, today was the Autumnal Equinox — or the Evenlength, if you like words derived from Middle English (ȝevelengðhe). It’s also Bilbo and Frodo Baggins’s birthday, so I started re-reading The Lord of the Rings. As one does. And I was reminded of the whole modernist thing by his poetry of all things.

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On Failure in Steven Universe

Steven Universe — the character — fails sometimes, but always learns from it and improves himself. That’s not the kind of failure I want to talk about. I find it really fascinating that the show has a character who would be labeled “a failure” in any other story and not only are they not the butt of jokes, they’re one of the most supportive, well-balanced characters. Let’s talk about Greg.

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