Anonymous asked: Do you think Hispanic people eating others Hispanic cultures food is in any way problematic? I'm Colombian and I attempted to cook a Mexican recipe and one my friends told me I was being offensive because I was appropriating the Mexican culture

my answer to your friend…I’m sorry but:

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Eating or cooking the food of another culture is NOT appropriative! Even if you weren’t from Latin America, it’s not appropriative! The reason why I push back so much at the abusing of the term “cultural appropriation” is because: 1) people delegitimise the issue of cultural appropriation by making it seem segregationist when they say things like eating the food of another culture is disrespectful. 2) they’re sucking up oxygen from real examples of cultural appropriation that are actually hurtful and need attention.

Cultural appropriation = treating and reducing an entire culture and people to costumes or stereotypes. This happens by stealing and taking sacred and important aspects of another culture without the permission of the people of that culture, and cheapening, distorting, sexually exoticising + doing that because it’s cool. For example, people wearing Native American war bonnets (they’re like veteran’s medals) as part of lousy Halloween costumes or as fashion. Or a company making cheap shit and calling it “dreamcatchers” when they’re nothing like the real thing.

Food mostly doesn’t fall into that category because usually the act of eating in of itself isn’t sacred, and the different cuisines we have arose out of how most cultures develop their cuisine around local ingredients. It’s not like you have to be say, Indian, to fully appreciate the taste of curry. You just need tastebuds. Treating cutures as costumes is a serious issue, but eating food or learning a language exists in a very different context from traditional clothing and religious ceremonies. Food and language, for example, are usually something that are shared freely with outsiders, compared to traditional costumes and ceremonies that need much more understanding and knowledge. 

  • Also, throughout human history, cuisine has been something that very freely borrows and melds influences from multiple cultures! Human civilisations have shared ingredients, styles of cooking and mixed them altogether and spread them since antiquity! I mean, potatoes, for example were originally from the Americas. Yet it’s become a staple ingredient in many German dishes. Or gumbo- it’s a great Louisiana dish inspired by West African, Choctaw and a number of European influences! I’m of Chinese descent myself and I can tell you I’m not offended that plenty of non-Chinese eat and cook our cuisine! Like hell yeah please eat it- Sichuan food for example, it is the best shit ever, rice is amazing and like it’s a great alternative to bread as a source of carbohydrates. If they want to learn to cook it, sure, even better! 
  • How are you mocking Mexican culture by trying to cook a recipe? I’d say you’re appreciating Mexican culture! The only exception is I guess some religious ceremonies may involve consumption of food…but if you’re just enjoying the cuisine in isolation and not trying to re-enact a sacred ceremony, it’s different. I mean, coffee is an example- it originated in the Arab world and was originally used in some religious ceremonies, but amongst Arab and Muslim people, eventually became an everyday drink. Even if non-Mexican sets up a Mexican restaurant, it’s fine because everyone can learn to cook another culture’s food, though I’d hope they themselves got advice from Mexican cooks!
  • Mexican cuisine itself is a fusion of Mesoamerican (i.e the original Americans like the Aztec, Mixtec) and European influences like Spanish! I mean, if THAT was cultural appropriation, then by that logic, Mexicans of predominantly European origin shouldn’t be allowed to cook any dishes that have any say, Aztec influences! Anyway, it’d be a sad, sad world if we were all constrained to cooking and eating food only of the ethnicities that run in our blood: 

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(The tortillas common in Mexican cuisine are Mesoamerican in origin- the Aztecs were one Mesoamerican peoples who made and consumed them.)

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(Coffee was spread to Europe thanks to the Ottoman Empire.)

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(The Mesoamericans first made chocolate into a drink around 4000 years ago! The Mayans were one of the original cultivars of the plant that produces cacao beans. 

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(The domestic pig is believed to have first been bred from wild boars either by the Chinese or people in the Middle East around 8000 years ago. Other theories suggest two separate instances of domestication. Btw, it was the Europeans who introduced pork to the Americas!)

please explain to them this, yeah? If they still say no you can tell them I’m officially banning them from eating spaghetti because like EXCUSE ME I read somewhere that Italians appropriated the noodles which were ORIGINALLY from my culture!

P.S btw it’s believed the Arabs were the ones who actually introduced dried noodles to Italy. The Marco Polo thing is apparently a legend. It’ll be a sad world if every Italian restaurant had to strike pasta off, yes. This example illustrates how the history of food and cuisine is so mixed and varied we really can’t be sure its origins and it’s pointless and silly to segregate food- without all that mixing and borrowing, many of our plates would be so much more dull and tasteless. 

gildedhistory:

Hairstyles of Ancient Rome

"Hairstyle fashion in Rome was ever changing, and particularly in the Roman Imperial Period there were a number of different ways to style hair. Much the same with clothes, there were several hairstyles that were limited to certain people in ancient society. Styles are so distinctive they allow scholars today to create a chronology of Roman portraiture and art; we are able to date pictures of the empresses on coins, or identify busts depending on their hairstyles."

"Busts themselves could have detachable wigs. There have been many suggestions as to why some busts have been created with detachable wigs and some without. Perhaps the main reason was to keep the bust looking up-to-date. It would have been too expensive to commission a new bust every time hair fashion changed, so a mix-and-match bust would have been preferable for women with less money." [X]

Anonymous asked: Hi, sorry to bug you but I gotta ask... I've read your post on how serious!hetalia should usually be for historical facts and dabbling into current issues isn't really advisable which I agree but here's the problem... I currently have a fanfic on the works and by works I mean 80-90% done... it dabbles into the upcoming Scottish independence, it doesn't exactly affect the people of either countries just the UK brothers and how they handle it...I don't know if I should publish it or not...

hi anon, when I meant that we shouldn’t use aph for serious current affairs, it’s usually when people are getting hurt and killed, like the war in Ukraine, Syria or Iraq. Scottish independence itself, while serious in the sense that it will have major ramifications on the UK, doesn’t quite fall into that category. Like I’d think it’s fine if somebody did a fic about the recent WW1 commemorations- which are no doubt serious to many veterans and their descendants.

Serious current events where people are getting hurt, like the Ebola outbreak or a conflict, shouldn’t be portrayed using APH because these same characters are often used in gags and other fics. Therefore, a serious event where people are really suffering is one we should not tie to anything that might undermine it or potentially be disrespectful to the family members of people suffering. There’s just too much potential for doing it wrongly. For example- the Ukraine crisis. How does anybody draw this accurately? Because there ethnic Russians in Ukraine, and Ukrainians who speak Russian but identify with Ukraine, people who are mixed etc- that’s something with too much risk of portraying wrongly, offensively and insensitively- and it’s something we shouldn’t do as plenty of people who are actually affected by it (i.e Russian and Ukrainian bloggers) would see it online too.

That’s why usually for historical hetalia involving anything where people lives were at stake, it’s best to draw events sometime in the past, because while they may be serious, people in the present aren’t actually experiencing it. If somebody inadvertently portrays it inaccurately, it is at least far less likely to hurt people or upset them as it isn’t ongoing (though it can be hurtful and we should point it out. The extent is just less, as the event isn’t ongoing)

Imo it’s alright for you to publish your fic, because you’re interested in imagining how the brothers handle it- APH is a vehicle for you to explore and condense national history and sentiment in a creative way with regard to this current event. I think this is something that can be done really well, and again, while Scottish independence will have a major impact, it’s not quite as upsetting on the same level as the ongoing wars in Ukraine, Syria and Iraq where people are really dying. 


Having none of your Lion bullshit today.

Having none of your Lion bullshit today.

Anonymous asked: (This is that problem anon) Well, for the last couple years it seems like my parents have been arguing more. I'm pretty sure it's not just because I'm getting older and understanding more. They don't scream or get violent ever but they're pretty mean to each other. My little brother only seems to be making it worse though. He's 13, young enough to be a little clueless but old enough to understand a bit. He always argues with my mom about his homework and she has very little patience with him.

stirringwind:

(continued) She tries really hard and he’s really unappreciative. My dad comes home from work and only sees it when my mom has had enough of him. When one parent upsets him, he tells the other and my dad thinks that my mom favors me because she doesn’t get upset at me as often. Sometimes he sees how frustrating dealing with my bro is but he still thinks my mom is being unfair and they’re always disagreeing over it. I know my bro isn’t doing it on purpose but I can’t tell him.

(last part)I don’t want to make him think that it’s his fault because it isn’t entirely. He has my mom always pushing him to do homework while my dad doesn’t get as involved with the school stuff. It’s always been that way because my mom stays at home. I have to admit though that I am also rude to my bro because he upsets me too. That’s another reason why my dad thinks my bro is always ganged up on. I really don’t favor one parent’s side over the other but I wish my dad understood a little more.

Hi anon, from what I gather all of this is making you very stressed and worried naturally. 

Firstly, your worries are perfectly legitimate. A relationship doesn’t have to be getting violent or involve screaming to be unhealthy (in fact, if there is violence, that is domestic violence and very serious- the child protective services and police should be involved- because adults, especially those with children, destroy the sense of safety a home should have if they hit their spouse.)

On one level, it’s possible there are other issues besides your brother contributing to tension between your parents. I’ve had to mediate between my parents before- because personality-wise they’re like polar opposites!  Sometimes, it is also a matter of difference in how people perceive the world because they see it differently. My mum is sentimental and values gestures, whereas my dad is very logical and pragmatic. (Once, he didn’t at all understand why she was pissed he forgot to write her a birthday card and was like, “but you know I love you everyday!”)

It may be good to take aside your mum and dad (on two separate occasions) and talk to them honestly about how all of this is making you feel.  As their child living in their household, you and your brother will be affected and they should also spare a thought for you. At the very least, they should be honest with you about the issues troubling them (i.e is it really just over your brother? Are there other worries stressing them both out?) 

Regarding your brother…oh boy! I can relate to this a little due to kinda having what might be considered Tiger parenting in the US- my mum was very involved in making sure my sister and I did our homework. Both of us weren’t particularly good at maths, and my sister always ended up arguing with my Mum about it. Sometimes I was also kind of an ungrateful shit too when I was 13 when my mum tried to make me sit down and do my logarithms. I guess, try and understand your brother a little- he’s young and not mature yet- on the cusp of becoming a teenager. It’s a period of change, he may be unsure about many things and being uncooperative over his studies is because he doesn’t quite know how to deal with his worries productively. Do try to be more patient with him- I imagine if you are angry with him too it only makes him feel more and more like he’s being treated unreasonably by his family members. Take a deep breath, go outside whenever you feel like you’re getting mad. 

I think overall, if it is troubling you very badly, it would be good for you to see a counsellor to discuss your worries- I think many schools have counsellors. Counselling isn’t only for when things are very serious- just as you may see a doctor when you have a bad cold, you should see a counsellor when you are experiencing emotional problems- your mind can get injured and hurt just as your body does. Alternatively, you could talk to a trusted person like perhaps a school teacher you’re on good terms with or a relative. I’ve seen a counsellor before myself, and while it isn’t a panacea that solves everything, sharing everything in detail with someone can help. Counsellors are bound by confidentiality- they cannot share anything you tell them with anyone (save for if the information will put someone in danger). Also, a good counsellor trained psychology and human relationships will be able to help you to rationalise your emotions and teach you techniques to deal with them. A counsellor might also be able to determine from what you tell them whether perhaps you should recommend the rest of your family sees a counsellor themselves. You are a human being yourself, and you have your limits- one person cannot take on the worries of others too. 

btw to that problem anon, i didn’t realise your message has multiple parts so I’m reading the rest of your reply before i repost my answer! 

(you can message me off anon if you feel comfortable too- I will answer privately in that case.) 

tagged → #anon asks
Anonymous asked: (This is that problem anon) Well, for the last couple years it seems like my parents have been arguing more. I'm pretty sure it's not just because I'm getting older and understanding more. They don't scream or get violent ever but they're pretty mean to each other. My little brother only seems to be making it worse though. He's 13, young enough to be a little clueless but old enough to understand a bit. He always argues with my mom about his homework and she has very little patience with him.

(continued) She tries really hard and he’s really unappreciative. My dad comes home from work and only sees it when my mom has had enough of him. When one parent upsets him, he tells the other and my dad thinks that my mom favors me because she doesn’t get upset at me as often. Sometimes he sees how frustrating dealing with my bro is but he still thinks my mom is being unfair and they’re always disagreeing over it. I know my bro isn’t doing it on purpose but I can’t tell him.

(last part)I don’t want to make him think that it’s his fault because it isn’t entirely. He has my mom always pushing him to do homework while my dad doesn’t get as involved with the school stuff. It’s always been that way because my mom stays at home. I have to admit though that I am also rude to my bro because he upsets me too. That’s another reason why my dad thinks my bro is always ganged up on. I really don’t favor one parent’s side over the other but I wish my dad understood a little more.

Hi anon, from what I gather all of this is making you very stressed and worried naturally. 

Firstly, your worries are perfectly legitimate. A relationship doesn’t have to be getting violent or involve screaming to be unhealthy (in fact, if there is violence, that is domestic violence and very serious- the child protective services and police should be involved- because adults, especially those with children, destroy the sense of safety a home should have if they hit their spouse.)

On one level, it’s possible there are other issues besides your brother contributing to tension between your parents. I’ve had to mediate between my parents before- because personality-wise they’re like polar opposites!  Sometimes, it is also a matter of difference in how people perceive the world because they see it differently. My mum is sentimental and values gestures, whereas my dad is very logical and pragmatic. (Once, he didn’t at all understand why she was pissed he forgot to write her a birthday card and was like, “but you know I love you everyday!”)

It may be good to take aside your mum and dad (on two separate occasions) and talk to them honestly about how all of this is making you feel.  As their child living in their household, you and your brother will be affected and they should also spare a thought for you. At the very least, they should be honest with you about the issues troubling them (i.e is it really just over your brother? Are there other worries stressing them both out?) 

Regarding your brother…oh boy! I can relate to this a little due to kinda having what might be considered Tiger parenting in the US- my mum was very involved in making sure my sister and I did our homework. Both of us weren’t particularly good at maths, and my sister always ended up arguing with my Mum about it. Sometimes I was also kind of an ungrateful shit too when I was 13 when my mum tried to make me sit down and do my logarithms. I guess, try and understand your brother a little- he’s young and not mature yet- on the cusp of becoming a teenager. It’s a period of change, he may be unsure about many things and being uncooperative over his studies is because he doesn’t quite know how to deal with his worries productively. Do try to be more patient with him- I imagine if you are angry with him too it only makes him feel more and more like he’s being treated unreasonably by his family members. Take a deep breath, go outside whenever you feel like you’re getting mad. 

I think overall, if it is troubling you very badly, it would be good for you to see a counsellor to discuss your worries- I think many schools have counsellors. Counselling isn’t only for when things are very serious- just as you may see a doctor when you have a bad cold, you should see a counsellor when you are experiencing emotional problems- your mind can get injured and hurt just as your body does. Alternatively, you could talk to a trusted person like perhaps a school teacher you’re on good terms with or a relative. I’ve seen a counsellor before myself, and while it isn’t a panacea that solves everything, sharing everything in detail with someone can help. Counsellors are bound by confidentiality- they cannot share anything you tell them with anyone (save for if the information will put someone in danger). Also, a good counsellor trained psychology and human relationships will be able to help you to rationalise your emotions and teach you techniques to deal with them. A counsellor might also be able to determine from what you tell them whether perhaps you should recommend the rest of your family sees a counsellor themselves. You are a human being yourself, and you have your limits- one person cannot take on the worries of others too. 

Anonymous asked: Can I bother you with a very personal problem?

hi anon, I don’t know if I can help change your situation, but I do believe that even just listening and sharing with somebody can help :) so do feel free to message me if you want to- and I do hope things eventually work out for you, whatever it is that you are facing.

unexplained-events:

Stars

Just want to take a break from the usual stuff to talk about how amazing stars are. When we look at stars we get to look into the past. Due to the way and speed light travels(186,282 mps) in, we see stars as they once were. It takes light, from the closest star to us, to travel to Earth in about eight minutes. When Earth based telescopes look at the sun, they are seeing it as it was eight minutes ago. Using Earth based telescopes and advancing technology we can see stars that no longer exist.

There are stars out there that are more than thousands, millions or billions of of light years away. So, if a star is a million light years away and died a million years ago, we will see it die now.  If another star died four million years ago, but is a hundred million light years away, we’ll still be able to see it for another 96 million years.

Anonymous asked: How does current political situation affects on your attitude towards rusame? And how do you see relationship between US and Russia some years later? *sorry for my bad english

Hmm personally for me on one level my take is I shouldn’t draw very serious current events where people are actually getting hurt and killed (as opposed to a funny and more harmless event like drawing the World Cup matches). Like if it’s meant to be a reference, it’s best it’s more oblique and not outright. Like serious!hetalia is best left to historical events that have happened a longer time ago at least and aren’t presently ongoing.

If I do want to draw fluffy stuff, the context will be set separate from the present. (I.e there’s a difference between drawing say, Russia and Ukraine with Belarus as just meant to be a cute picture depicting the common cultural ties of the Slavic siblings vs drawing something actually meant to be depicting what’s happening right now in the news.) 

Well imo my view on how it’s going on now is that it seems to be sliding back into Cold War-era paranoia. It’s not quite the same as 1950 in the sense that there isn’t really an “ideological” struggle but more just of competing national interests. I’m a bit concerned about how this is all going to end. While it’s not like the US really wants a confrontation with Russia because Americans are kinda sick of war and the US needs Russian help on Iran and Syria, and it seems Russia is more concerned with ensuring Ukraine doesn’t join the EU and NATO rather than spreading a political ideology- there’s no telling whether events will spin out of control.

The present Ukrainian government has pretty bad ties with Russia right now and they’re asking to join NATO- which was set up by the US during the Cold War precisely as a nuclear deterrence against the Soviet Union. This isn’t going to go down well in Russia because Ukraine borders Russia and NATO member countries often host things like missile batteries, training exercises. Russia wouldn’t want that at its border, naturally. So tbh while I think Russia has been funding the rebels in Ukraine I think if the US allows Ukraine to join NATO it might potentially worsen ties. I really hope a hot war doesn’t start between Ukraine and Russia (it’s getting dangerously close) because while I don’t think the NATO countries like the US, or Germany and UK will want to get involved (Western Europe is pretty dependent on energy supplies from Russia), there’s no telling what will happen in that kind of chaotic situation. The US doesn’t have an obligation to take outright sides with Ukraine now as it isn’t a member of NATO, but if it does, it will- and I can see Russian-American ties going further downhill.