Easter Bank Holiday

Even before I opened my eyes, I could tell that it was a Bank Holiday – not because of a lack of traffic, but because there was a strong wind blowing and the temperature had dropped noticeably in the night. Bad weather on a Bank Holiday is something of a tradition, and I’ve even seen a scientific paper on why that is. I just can’t remember the details as it has been a few years, but its something to do with a disruption in warm air from factories being closed.

You may have noticed a small change in colour scheme, if not layout, over the last twenty four hours – and that’s because I’m making use of my time to update and alter a few things. One of those is the beginning of documentation of the game that we’ve started as the DDC, and therefore a bit of a shuffle of the Gaming menu structure so it doesn’t get lost. I’d love to say I had a grand design, but just as the strap line for the website says: I’m making it up as I go along.

How has my Bank Holiday been? Quiet for the most part. I’ve made more maps as contingencies for when the group goes off-script, and I’ve played a bit on the XBox, and then Lady M and I watched the remake of Aladdin while we had our supper and were pleasantly entertained. I’ve just been out for a brisk twenty minute walk, and now am trying to enthuse myself to write while Lady M plays some Assassin’s Creed. I think part of the low-grade irritation at the moment is that I’m missing myr s fiercely but there’s nothing any of us can do about it

Interesting Stat Moment

I just had a look at the site visitors numbers for the last month or two and we’ve already surpassed the total visits for February 2019. I’ll make no pretence that we’re talking tens of thousands of people here – there’s a little over 4oo wordpress-registered followers and a thousand or so email subscribers – but it’s still enough to make me smile, be grateful for all of you reading, and remember to keep posting regularly.

Site Updates 9th October

Pretty sure this is what my body thinks of all this

Seeing as I’m home sick and my brain won’t switch off, I’m swapping a few things round on the site. I’ve added an artwork section, which currently compiles last year’s Inktober, and will soon have this year’s and some general artwork/doodles in a general gallery too.

I’m also rationalising and rejigging the fiction bits – especially the short fiction – to make it a bit simpler to navigate. Mostly its collapsing the 2017 fiction and the older fiction pieces into all-encompassing alphabetical lists, which should then make it easier for me to find things and add new pieces.

Site Rejigging in Progress

If things appear odd at any time on this site at any time, its probably just me rearranging things a bit. The short fiction is getting simplified as some devices couldn’t cope with the menu layouts, and I still need to properly update and fill out the Tango Mike Cosplay section too.

Its like having a spring clean – except that it’s Autumn and I may make things even messier in the process of sorting things out. That’s probably a good analogy for any of my attempts to pretend to be a useful member of general society. My biggest hurdle is likely to be my tiredness as I’m working extra hours at the moment (hey, a new mortgage needs feeding).

I also, as much as I love writing about the whimsicality of library life, have to maintain a degree of discretion so don’t expect too many raving rants about work illogicalities – the same can’t necessarily be said for some of the gems that Lady M has been coming out with recently.

Ah well – its the weekend, there’s sunshine, and I’m sure I’ll see some of it at some point. This evening sees the return of the libatious librarians at least, so there may be social media sightings tonight.

Capitalisation matters

The sharper-eyed among you may have noticed that I’ve started referring to lady s in lowercase as opposed to the Capitalisation that I use for everyone else if I talk about them: Lady M, for example. This is not a slur, or a mistake – in fact it was discussed and agreed explicitly with lady s before I started doing it.

In D/s, the use of capitals is important for denoting negotiated power levels between partners. As I explained to someone recently when they were asking questions about “doms and subs”, you should always capitalise the reference to the person who has been given the control, and put in lower case the person who has surrendered it.

In writing about them this way, it then makes the dynamic roles obvious at a glance. Whether it is Dom/sub, Master/slave, Lord/lady, (or any other set of terms agreed between partners) you can be sure to avoid embarrassment or irritation.

These are terms and roles that are held very close to people’s hearts. Purely as a matter of not being an arse to people it’s best to acknowledge and respect that dynamic as best as possible in the same way that you might respect the terms husband and wife – and therefore the bond between them. To people in what’s called the Lifestyle, this dynamic is often treated as an analogue to marriage.

So as her Dom, lady s has said that this feels a better fit to the dynamic that we have. Don’t make the mistake of thinking this makes her weak however. As anyone who has met her will testify, she’s a vivacious, strong minded, independent and passionate woman – and her offering that strength to me is a constant source of amazement.

So now you know why I have my loves: Lady M and lady s, and why I refer to them as such. They are both strong and wonderful people who make my life immeasurably better.

Some more Site Updates

Its been a busy week, but somehow not as hectic as some, so I’m taking some time today to throw some more cosplay updates onto the page so I can then update the galleries later. Today I’ve put up two of the lesser-known or obvious characters – the Azkaban Escapee, and a Steampunk King Triton – paradoxically in many ways they’re some of the more complex designs in terms of props and gear.

I’m still not totally sold on the new interface for WordPress, especially in dealing with the more complex page structures that I currently have. I may revisit the Fiction and Roleplay sections to see if they’d benefit from a less complicated arrangement.

Site Update In Progress

I’ve started updating the site, mostly with pictures and commentary around my cosplaying under the name Tango Mike Cosplay. There was already a tag for it on the navigation bar at the top of the page, but I’m in the process of making sub-pages to that, each with a gallery of images to peruse.

This is fun.

Cosplaying Shenanigans

I’ve been shuffling my social media cards a bit recently, which has taken up more time than I anticipated. It will also have a knock-on effect here in the form (eventually) of changes to pages and possibly layouts.

Essentially I have created a separate Facebook page and identity as Tango Mike Cosplay so that my poor family and friends can have a break from all the photos and geekery should they choose.

It also allows me a little distance so that people who may be interested can see the public stuff without being brought into the closer Friends privacy circle. It makes sense in my head.

Now I’ve been at great pains to keep my name associated clearly with my online presence, as much for my own personal accountability and brand, so why the new brand for the cosplay, and why that name?

Well it’s quite simple:┬áTango Mike is of course my initials, keeping the strong link to my name, and the semiotics of a callsign-style identity such as may be used in military, police, or emergency services comms.

Tango Mike Cosplay Photograph by ToneagraphyIt is also deliberate as it ties in to a major project on the cosplay front next year.

I’ve been in conversation with a Halo cosplay group called Fireteam Ascension about creating a cosplay mashup of my gender-bent Harley Quinn with a Spartan Mjolnir suit. The heavy lifting on the design of that still needs to happen, but it will draw on the classic black and red and white livery of the character rather than the cinematic interpretation.

So that should keep me out of trouble

Seven Years Gone

Someone asked me how I first started this blog: with an introduction to myself, or just launching into it. I couldn’t remember so I’ve just spent about five minutes scrolling back in the app on my phone to have a look.

It turns out that on the 23rd September 2010, the first post on this blog was:

*dips toe into the blogosphere and nods when nothing immediately falls off*

So there we go, seven years of my waffling into the darkness here. Doesn’t time fly?

My Private Audience

I have a small number of people who have the option to read the stories I write a little earlier than anyone else. They are at one and the same time my cheerleaders and editorial eyes. 

They quite often manage to capture the more outlandish spelling mistakes and grammatical oddities before the stories hit the wild. This is just as well because most of my writing is currently done on my phone using an app called Journey. 

It’s a journalling app that exports very smoothly to other applications, but like anything on a phone it is rather held to ransom sometimes by the dreaded autocorrect feature.

So, my private audience serves both as somewhere to play with words with people I know and trust, and as a point of checking before publication. I’m beginning to think that they should have a collective name – but perhaps ‘private audience’ works well enough.

They’re amazing people: Ladies M, P, G, Gr, and of course the redoubtable Mre B are your first line of editorial defence against my wildest inaccuracies. You’re all very welcome.