rax: (vulpix is not pleased)
Content warning: Abuse, rape, sexual assault, discussions of self-harm, PTSD, rax being angry. Maybe other things. This isn't really nice rax and this isn't about nice things. I know a couple of folks just friended me and like. This probably isn't where to start your raxperience? :P

The details of my personal experience. )

The fallout of my personal experience. )

General requests and maybe even suggestions )
rax: (Benten guitar case)
If you're interested in my main set: You can listen streaming here, download here, and see a tracklist here. If you're interested in other people's sets... I'll try to get copies and post them here? :)

What the party was like: It was kinda small and cozy, reminded me of CGR 4 or 5, where there was more socializing than dancing but a lot of the socializing was structured around the presence of music and the possibility of dancing. People seemed to have a lot of fun, and I got rave reviews, which always makes me really happy. Throwing parties that encourage people I care about to do different kinds of things than they usually do is super awesome to me. Would do again. Will do again. (I'd been feeling before the party a little like "ugh, will this be the last CGR? am I done with this?" and my answer is emphatically no. So that's cool.)

What DJing was like: It's interesting how much better I am at this than a year ago and just how much there is left to learn. Listening to last year's set as well as this one, I can tell that last year I took risks all over the place because I didn't know what I was doing, and some of them paid off in really interesting ways and others... Worked out okay. :P This year I was more careful, and while I think that paid off overall, it means I didn't do things as complex or reach-y as last year? Which maybe is related to how I'm approaching the world lately, or maybe isn't? Check back in a few months? (Also I whiffed the transition into Lights. Oops. The perils of going live; I brought in some stuff I hadn't expected to actually use at the end, so I was _way_ off script.) It was SUPER FUN. I did a second set at 3 AM or so, but it was just a reprise of half of the stuff from Laura's wedding afterparty, so while I did save my work for private review I'd much rather get a good mixdown of the whole set and share that later.

What CGR is growing to mean for me: A changing of the seasons. A chance to see old friends. A way to share what I'm learning about music with said friends. A way to bring people together. An excuse to put cat ears on everybody. One of the anchor points in my year, something I plan around even when I don't do a _good_ job planning around it and only get a venue locked down two weeks in advance. Sorry about that. I hope it can be some of those things for some of you, too, and is at least interesting to read about for everyone else. :P

What sucked this year: vague discussion of sexual assault/harassment )

Why this post is in this format: I have no idea. I'm pretty tired, time to go to bed.

rax: (RAWKFAWX)
Life is pretty good! Here are some updates that were too large to send to Twitter! It’s an exclam day! I'm vaguely sick but I took cold medicine so I'm still enthusiastic and excitable and a bit loopy!
  • Magic: I’m playing Magic! I meant not to get into it super seriously, but I got recruited into a team, cardagain.com, and now I’m editing for their website and sponsored to play in major events. Oops! It’s super fun, and while if you don’t play Magic you don’t care, we recently got Travis Woo as a writer, and you can see a cool new article of his here! If you like it and want to share it around that would be awesome too I guess? I dunno, I'm terrible at social media. cardagain wants to be, like, magiccards.info plus tcgplayer when we grow up, and some of the features (visual decklists sorted by CMC) are already very cool.
  • Computers: The Homestuck Shipping World Cup kind of took up a hobby slot this summer. I don’t really care about the event at this point, and didn’t really participate as a fan, but I’m on the mod team, and did almost all of the coding. I feel like a way more proficient programmer than six months ago. Not _good_, but proficient, which feels nice. I can take python and sqlite and make them do things that someone might want software to do. It’s been very confidence boosty, and I _finally_ learned git. I’ve also gotten to play sysadmin, since it’s all hosted off of my server. I originally planned this as a way to have a record of me being able to do things with computers if I lost my job, but…
  • Work: I was worried I might lose my job because the work I had been doing was kind of drying up, but instead, I got promoted into new responsibilities! I’m doing new and different stuff, which is really refreshing! I’m not good at it and that’s mostly great because I get to learn things but it’s occasionally terrifying!
  • Therapy: I’ve been doing the therapy thing again after all the horrible bullshit from a year or two back. In the past I used to do mean things to future rax, and in the more recent past, I started doing nice things for future rax, and that’s treated me very well for the last few years. Right now I’m trying to figure out doing nice things for past rax. It’s super cool. It’s definitely hard and going to stay hard and… intersects with some kind of spirituality in weird ways I haven’t figured out yet? I dunno. I’ll talk more about that if I figure it out, maybe.
  • Travel: Has been awesome!!! So many wonderful people and I get to see them in so many wonderful places, between Boston and SF and Seattle and random road trips from those places and so on and so forth. (Also, I edited /home/rax/random-text/people-history/people-i-have-kissed for the first time in a long time, and it was great. <3)
  • Music: Has taken a bit of a back seat! But I’m getting back in the groove and have two DJ sets in September and one or two in November and I’ve already started working on them because it remains _super fun_.

That’s about it. Hope y’all are doing wel!
rax: (catgirl makeup)
Every year Catgirl Goth Rave is a pretty big deal for me, and y'all who don't go probably get annoyed with me for posting about it, emailing about it, &c. so often. For me and for a lot of people who attend it's a chance to see a lot of friends in a type of environment I don't often get to spend time in, and to have friends share artistic/musical creations and, increasingly, traditions with each other. (I think everyone spends at least some time watching Kim's ridiculous video loop, which was first made for, like CGR 3?) But this year is especially a big deal for me, and I can tell because I'm alternating between bouncing hopelessly and kinda freaking out, and I want to share why to combination share myself/steel myself/understand through writing. Once I'm done with this post I'm going to go find something spicy and hearty to eat, then it will be SETUP MODE followed by PARTY MODE followed by SLEEP MODE.

This year I am DJing. I am learning to DJ for this party, and it will be the first time I've played music in front of other people in any significant way in like... fifteen years? Maybe only thirteen. "A long time." I had a pretty hardcore music education as a kid, getting steeped in music theory as well as reaching a pretty high proficiency level on a number of instruments (violin, piano, voice, tuba...) --- this is one of the tremendous gifts my parents gave me. Unfortunately it came along with one of their tremendous ungifts.

cut for vague-ish descriptions of abuse )

I've tried to get over this a bunch of times, between occasional plucking away at a bass while listening to music and trying to start a band with friends and having all of one rehearsal and keeping a tuba in my cramped dorm room for years while basically never touching it and all manner of other things. None of them took; I couldn't do it. I actually bought the equipment and software that I'm going to use to DJ tonight in order to try getting over this with electronic composition, which hasn't worked for me yet, but has a little for my brother.  Two things are different this time:
  • I'm back in therapy dealing with other abuse, and weirdly (or maybe not-so-weirdly), that's helped me manage my feelings around this and take care of myself while also pushing myself.
  • I'm doing this for CATGIRL FUCKING GOTH RAVE --- I'm not doing this (just) for me, I am doing this as a gift to all of my friends.
Typically the gift I've given is finding a bunch of real DJs and getting them to entertain my friends, and running all of the logisitics, because that's the sort of thing I genuinely like doing. This year, for a host of reasons, there weren't enough people to make music, and for a while I was worried we wouldn't really have anyone at all. Luckily a couple of good friends are back to spin, and I'm filling in a slot --- at 10 PM tonight, I'm going to get in front of a bunch of people I care about, and share music with them, and after the party's over, I'm going to upload it, and share it with all of you, mistakes and all, and if you take the time to listen to it, I hope you enjoy it.

And if, after I'm done, I find myself on the floor crying, this time it won't be because I'm afraid. <3

October 2016

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