iPhone vs Android or How I Discovered My Relationship Style

Technology is amazing isn’t it? We can communicate 24/7 we can selfie ourselves sick and we can Yelp about how awesome this Thai place is from a mobile device. Two weeks ago, Apple unveiled the iPhone 6 and it’s been interesting to watch how it didn’t quite meet the standards iPhone users and tech heads had come to expect from the juggernaut company.

I wanted a new phone. I’ve had an iPhone 4s for a few years and have come to love all the things that it can do, basic as it may seem.

I wanted to feel fresh bold and new, the way a fancy new piece of tech can make you feel.

I decided to upgrade and wound up with a big Samsung Galaxy 5s.

I went back to my iPhone after one day.

What happened? Wasn’t I so totally head over heels with the Samsung? Didn’t I want to take all the elaborate photos and videos and go, ‘I’ve moved on Apple, you lack innovation’ ? Wasn’t I totally upset when U2 appeared on my phone for no reason? Of course I was. I was ready to move on and then I realized, the text messages from the one person who I value the most weren’t coming in and they weren’t seeing anything I was sending. Suddenly, a panic. All the photos and videos and easy to draw dicks on people’s faces (there’s an app for that) in the world couldn’t save me from the fact that I couldn’t communicate with the one person who means the world to me.

My brother was ecstatic.

I’d finally dumped iPhone for Samsung and he had so many things he wanted to show me but in the back of my mind, I kept thinking, Black Widow had done so much for me that it was hard to just start working with Sam. I was cheating. I was cheating on the phone that had been so good and loyal to me despite all the times I’d wanted to throw it out a window, shoot it with an m-4 rifle then detonate a claymore right on top of it. It had been good to me and here I was, wanting something new when we both knew that wasn’t how this was going to work.

I researched, I toyed with it. I watched videos and tried to find reasons why having this flatscreen pressed to my face would make me happy and I realized that what I really use the phone for is communication, sending random photos and of course, talking to another person.

legit search history

I’d compared notes and tested both phones in store before walking away but I was struck with tremendous sense of guilt and a little bit of sadness, feelings you get when you walk away from a relationship. I’d had Black Widow (my iPhone 4s) for about 3 years and in that time I’d seen so many concerts, Tweeted so many douchebagy things, taken adorable pictures and watched the most random videos on this thing. I’d had arguments that should’ve never happened, text wars that didn’t make any sense and all emoji texts with said person who was really the reason why I was going back to the iPhone.

What does all of this say about me as a person?

I value experiences and memories over making something new happen. New experiences are great as long as they’re with someone or something familiar because you always want to broaden your horizons with the thing that reminds you of how far you’ve come and how much more there is to go. I like knowing that the phone I took a certain picture on is the same one in my hand when I’m taking a new picture. I like to compare their flaws, I like to know that I love them regardless of that and my having every version of a picture or operating system or hell, even a case, is enough to make me glad that I have them in the first place.

I’m loyal. Even if you’re doing something stupid, I’ll be with you to make sure you’ve learned something from this royally stupid mistake and even then, I won’t make fun of you for it, I’ll be glad that you tried something different and stayed true to yourself.

I like them shy I guess, the type that surprise you with how simple things make your day easier. They’re intuitive without needing to be shown.

A lot of Apple slander happened while I was debating phones, it sounded a lot like comparing partners. I defended Apple’s snobby elitism when it came to apps; I’d rather use who you trust than just let anybody into my life. It’s clean and fits without being eye catching. You notice it, do a double take and wonder how’d they get together. Much of what Samsung does is directly influenced by Apple so it’s like why are you doing the extra to get noticed? Samsung’s so big and bold and Apple is humdrum and simple. I’m simple. I’m boring actually, so it makes sense that I like the tried and true personality of an Apple versus the LOOK AT ME IM SO BIG I’M A BEAST bravado of the Samsung series. They’ve got a lot of great things going for them and I’m sure there will come a point where I really just don’t want to be using an Apple product anymore but again, the nostalgia, the comfort and knowledge that this phone was with you when you needed someone to talk to keeps me on the iPhone team.

I hated that the Samsung demanded I use my Gmail account to connect everything. Sure, you need an Apple ID but it asks you if you want to download things whereas with Google Play, all the things you do on your email gets shopped around and the phone just takes whatever it wants. You have to tell it to stop downloading things. I don’t want people to know that I spend way too much time on tumblr looking at gif sets of my OTP’s THAT IS MY TIME AND YOU DON’T GET TO SHARE IT!

I didn’t like that the Samsung told me I was stupid for not getting Swype or that my pictures needed to be enhanced somehow. I’m like, “sweetheart, you have a 16 megapixel camera, far better than any other phone in the market but I still see blotchy images that I have to fix in post. You’re not that good looking that I have to perform miracles on you okay? ”

Back to the relationship thing.

It terrified me walking around with this phone I didn’t know.

We were strangers on a first date, trying to get to know each other, being awkward. I asked what it liked to do and it told me, Ask Google. I asked if it liked taking pictures of cats and it said, ‘Sure yeah whatever we can do that’ I tried watching a movie on it and it was nice, we connected but we were silent, occasionally brushing fingertips in the popcorn and cringing at the contact. I changed the interface to closer resemble the iPhone, labeling my folders in the same quirky manner that I had with iPhone. It felt wrong somehow. I was making this phone more like me instead of it making me work and adapt and understand each other’s quirks.

At the end of the night, the Samsung kinda sat on my bed, big and bright, wanting me to play with it some more while my iPhone sat on an end table, quiet, stoic, understanding. I wound up Tweeting from my iPhone about how much I wasn’t enjoying Samsung, confessing to the main piece that you had one night with the side piece and it was awful. The iPhone was polite, listened and understood; it wasn’t personal, sometimes you just have to see the world to appreciate the beauty of your own front yard. I tossed and turned all night, checking on Sam and Black Widow to see who’d text me (I’d left the wifi on the iPhone on since the phone itself was disconnected) and no one said anything to me.

I work up this morning and called my carrier and cancelled the Samsung. The tech on the other line was surprised, almost shocked that I’d just bought this glorious masterpiece of tech and I was going back to the same old same old. She was understanding (I gave her a five rating for her service) and walked me through the process of one night stand with Sam. I’d have to go back to the store and tell them why Sam and I just weren’t going to work out.

I backed up Black Widow onto the Tardis, my Macbook Pro. My wallpaper the same one from an August concert with the one person I constantly communicate with (and with whom the double entendre of this post is for) my apps back where they belong and everything seemed to right itself. The simplicity of knowing that this relationship is just going to make sense because we make sense settled over me like the blanket I want my boo to cover me when it’s cold out. We read each other’s thoughts and know what the other needs without having to be explicit about it.

I’m back with my iPhone and who knows what the future holds, I just know as long as there is an outlet and I have a charging cable, I’ll trust where we’re going.

Thor is A Woman and That’s Fucking Fantastic

There is a major shake up happening in Marvel.

Starting in October, Thor, The Might Asgardian Norse god of Thunder would be…Thor, the Mighty Asgardian Norse goddess of Thunder.

The statement released on Marvel.com:

Marvel is excited to announce an all-new era for the God of Thunder in brand new series, THORwritten by Jason Aaron complimented with art from Russell Dauterman.

This October, Marvel Comics evolves once again in one of the most shocking and exciting changes ever to shake one of the “big three” of Captain American, Iron Man and Thor. No longer is the classic Thunder God able to hold the mighty hammer, Mjölnir, and a brand new female hero will emerge worthy of the name THOR.

More on Marvel.com: http://marvel.com/news/comics/2014/7/15/22875/marvel_proudly_presents_thor#ixzz37Z7NQyO0

Speculation is wild about the origins of the new wielder of Mjölnir, and the only hint that the lucky lady is someone who Thor himself saved. She’s built herself off of his mighty blondness and as of October, we’ll find out just who she is and how Thor lost his mojo.

“The inscription on Thor’s hammer reads ‘Whosoever holds this hammer, if HE be worthy, shall possess the power of Thor.’ Well it’s time to update that inscription,” says Marvel editor Wil Moss. “The new Thor continues Marvel’s proud tradition of strong female characters like Captain Marvel, Storm, Black Widow and more. And this new Thor isn’t a temporary female substitute – she’s now the one and only Thor, and she is worthy!”

Throg

Beta Ray Bill

The hammer chooses the wielder, just like Hogwarts Sorting Hat decides that your weak ass is a Hufflepuff and worthy to wield the hammer. (I’m kidding, I don’t know if Hufflepuff is weak, I’ve always been sorted into Gryffindor) Everyone can be worthy to carry the hammer, which is the great appeal of the entire mythos behind the Cosmic Marvel universe.

In 1978, issue 10 of Thor, The Watcher speculated what would have happened if Jane Foster found the Hammer.

what if i did enough squats to git this outfit?

So it’s not out of the realm of possibility for the ownership to pass from Thor Odinson to someone else. It has happened before. Especially when you consider that Throg was an actual plot point.

Thor is a name, not a title.

Naturally, the nerd hordes had a temper tantrum regarding the sex change because nerd rage.

Essentially, comic book purists can accept Throg, vaguely recall The Watcher’s one shot story about Jane and Mjölnir but for her to actually happening during a current run is a problem. The statement includes (paraphrase) a nod to the neglected female comic book fan, which makes it seem like a bit of a cash grab but it also acknowledges that female fronted titles are in demand and Marvel suits aren’t stupid. Captain Marvel, AKA Carol Danvers has been having an amazing run under Kelly Sue DeConnick which has spawned into a great Ms. Marvel title. X-Men founding member Ororo Munroe, aka Storm, is getting her first lead title despite having been in comics for longer than the recently decreased Wolverine who’s had multiple runs as a lead character. Marvel has been leading the charge in comic book diversity where DC is struggling to keep up. Both companies have the luxury of celebrating 50 years in the business and Marvel seems to be the first out of the old guard to truly embrace that the world is in fact very different today than it was upon some of their classic titles first printing.

 

Yesterday it was announced that John Constantine in the upcoming NBC paranormal horror series Constantine would not be bisexual as is cannon with the comic book. That’s a whole other argument but the nerd rage was interesting. They were dismayed at having this part of the character be downplayed when it was essential to who he is. The show runners also discussed that he will not be smoking as much as he does in his Hellblazer title.

At the heart of the hero is still the heart of who they are.

What does it mean that Thor is being replaced by a woman?

Nothing.

What it means is that readers will be treated to a richer experience in storytelling because you have to make your character someone to care about. As a woman, you’re invested in a character that isn’t another run of the mill damsel in distress and as a male reader, you’re still reading a comic book with a ass kicking lead with a legacy. When Miles Morales, the famously biracial kid from Queens, became the new Spider-man, the world almost imploded. From the nerd purists to the racists, Miles becoming the new Spider-man was the prime example for why comics need to change, why diversity is important and why everyone should feel welcome and represented in the great big world of comics and fantasy. They are escape routes and lessons in being a better person packed into bright pages. People of color and women should be included in this world that essentially doesn’t know the same politics as this one does.

The truth is, Marvel should be working on creating a new female lead, fresh origins, fresh stories, fresh everything. They may still be a long way off considering the success of their legacy titles but the seeds are being planted now. They’ve started that with the introduction of Kamala Khan as the aforementioned Ms. Marvel but there are established rules with that power because of the years of the hero having been male. She still needs to be a hero with an old credo in a modern world that may not welcome her.  By introducing new faces in old roles however, you demonstrate that anyone can and will be worthy of the title of hero.

The rage comes from the boat of comfort being rocked and people who don’t like change being toss out of the boat. We don’t know who the new Thor is and won’t until the title rolls out in October. We don’t know the conditions to which Thor loses his ability just as we don’t know how long she’ll be Thor. For all we know, Sif is the new Mjölnir wielder and the ‘other woman’ is Loki in disguise. That’s what makes the speculation so exciting. Taking someone and putting them into an extraordinary circumstance, like becoming something more is a universal experience. It’s a journey that everyone will go through as they discover who they are. Why should an extraordinary experience like becoming a superhero, a guardian, a crusader be only limited to men, or white men? Why should we continue to tell the other that they will remain that way because comic books say so? We are at an age of discovery, where someone somewhere at every second will discover who they are, who they are meant to be and what greater allegory is there than the superhero comic book title? Image Comics, Top Cow and Dark Horse are fantastic when it comes to the idea of diversity in storytelling but they aren’t the MAJORS like DC and Marvel are, plus, their titles tend to lean more maturely than Marvel and DC do.

I get that people are upset that this is happening to their beloved character but it doesn’t change who that character is at the core of their principles. The wild thing is that when Loki has swapped genders, it’s so totally Loki that it’s accepted. Some of it is ridiculed because people are five and have problems with things that challenge their personal belief systems and that’s cool but their distaste is tainting a very simple thing. Sure, Loki is evil and evil people do lousy things but there was no real uproar once Loki went back to being a boy. Maybe women aren’t allowed to be evil? Even if they’re the god of mischief.

After Ragnarök, Loki returned in a female body working with Doctor Doom so Thor would unwittingly resurrect his Asgardian enemies[40] and manipulated Balder to make him the new successor to the throne of Asgard.[41] In reality, Loki retained his male form after Ragnarok but hid himself inside Thor’s reborn lover Sif. During this period, Hela and Loki used magic to send Loki to the past to cause the events that led to his younger self being adopted by Odin as a means to eliminate Bor, Thor’s grandfather.

You can deal with spectral cosmic forces, space and time travel but a chick in charge, burn down the world.

Bae material either gender

What will be interesting is if the new Thor sticks around, what threat does she pose when it comes to warrior woman iconography? Gender Swapped Starbuck was the space warrior of our dreams but that didn’t come with controversy. We’re years away from Xena who was years removed from Wonder Woman who grand mothered Buffy the Vampire Slayer.. Could the new Thor be the new power character we’ve been looking for in the comic book universe? Can she become the next mainstream hero to stand with Black Widow, Maria Hill, Storm, Kitty Pryde, Black Cat, Melinda May, She-Hulk and Elektra? Of course she can, the real question is, come October, will you be willing to go on that adventure?

Personally, I’m looking forward to covers that aren’t spandex and ass shots. I mean c’mon. I’m badass, but don’t pay attention to my ass, just watch yours while it’s getting kicked.

With San Diego Comic Con just around the corner, one can only speculate that Marvel has succeeded in dominating the show floor and panels with this announcement as well as the media tour for the upcoming Guardians of The Galaxy, which features the daughter of Thanos and master assassin Gamora. Details will probably start surfacing once the con kicks off and we may get an idea of what’s in store for Thor and the new wielder of Mjölnir, so everyone who is butthurt now will be placated later on. Odds are, the answer will be so decent, that whatever controversy that may arise will be quelled by just how stupid they had been in the first place.What we do know is that Marvel is continuing the trend of understanding that readers, good solid committed, readers will always seek, find and buy the titles that interest them because that’s the business they’ve gotten themselves into.

What we want to see is a character that gives new life to an old name, that makes you discover comic books for the first time or rediscover them all over again.

FOUND OUT WHO IT IS:

DC had better step it’s game up.

Why Being Pretty is A Joke

Today I decided to get a quick eyebrow job figuring my part time werewolf impression was getting kinda stale. The place is run by Thai and Vietnamese immigrants so you can only imagine how many times you think they’re talking about you in their respective languages while while repeating “eyebrow, sit”. I love cultural exchanges and I ask a lot questions, chief among them,  the phrases that will allow me safe passage to places and how much liquor is.  That’s not the point though.

You walk into nail salons and it’s like entering another world, especially if these are non English/Spanish establishments which around my way, there are plenty of. Often times they’re all the same, white or cream interior, small cubicles of nail kits for sale, the wall o polish and the ten free nail design board with acrylic artwork that should be in a museum rather than chipping after three days.

It’s like a lottery when you go because some of the women are really good and then there are the ones still trying to master the fine art of the arch and not leave you with a chola arch. I get it. I’m Hispanic. We all want chola brows.

Anyways.

I draw the one that is the fetishized Asian ideal: Thin, big boobs, timid giggle and bottle dye job. Her twin is busy with a belt sander working on the talons of some woman who regretted waiting so long to do her pedi but it’s beach weather so she’s gotta do it. She tells me, “eyebrow, sit” and like a good goon, I do.  They’ve got a flat screen in there that’s linked to the web and have been streaming Asian top 40 mega mix stream (I swear on everything there was a track featuring Pitbull LAWD he’s truly conquered) she’s humming along and preparing to rip portions of my face off with wax and fabric. The salon is owned by someone much younger than I am and she’s pretty much a business tycoon, she’s employed mostly friends and family from the mother land and allows herself Mondays off. She checks in on them regularly and has been known to randomly pop up in the shop just to make sure the place hasn’t burned to the ground. The clientele is predominately black and hispanic, so it’s basically the urban UN in there. Women all complaining about lives either on their phones or to the nail technician. They do have Hispanic technicians but they often rotate days and today, they weren’t in. I’ve spoken to the Hispanic technicians there and they admit that the language thing makes them feel funny. We’ve had this conversation in Spanish.

They all start chattering on and giggling amongst themselves. Now, as a bilingual American, you do tend to ramble in your native language because sometimes, shit sounds funnier in your own language but in the context of a place where the woman working on your eyebrows is ACTUALLY inches away from your face, you immediately think, shit, they’re making fun of me. I’m just trying to get my eyebrows done and I honestly feel so attacked right now.

So now you’re self conscious with half an eyebrow done and they are all talking and giggling. Here I am, feeling all terrible and self conscious about my appearance (so vulnerable) and you’re giggling about something. In any case, I have the eyebrows done and have gone from a category four holy shit you’ve got a unibrow to a category one people will make proper eye contact with you when you’re in a meeting. I feel temporarily better because I don’t look like a Muppet.

As I’m sitting there, waiting for my mom to finish her mani pedi (she isn’t the one getting the power sander treatment) rubbing my eyebrows in dismay because I’m pretty sure I’ve roasted off the top layer of skin with the wax, it dawns on me: The effort that we go to be appealing is appalling. You wonder if, from their standpoint, they think you’re wasting time. Sure it’s great business to get into and finger nail hygiene is totally important, but the rest of it, the plucking, the waxing, the dyes, what purpose does it serve?

From the matching dye job the twins have, to my waxing hair off my eyebrows to the woman getting her lip and chin done and Lady Belt Sander, we as women spend so much time wanting to look acceptable that we spend more time fixing the things that are superficial. Then we judge each other based on how good we’ve convinced other people we’re good looking. We get self conscious about how we look and the personal value dramatically drops so we’ll go and fix it to see how much better you feel afterwards. It’s natural. Sometimes you get sick of looking at the same thing over and over again. I’m all about keeping a decent appearance and waking up all Beyoncé and flawless and what not but when we place the emphasis on what you look like versus who you are we have to pump breaks.

How I want to wake up

how I actually wake up

 

Pretty is a joke.

Aesthetics are based on what? Media? On personal choice? On what has worked in getting jobs and dates? Does that mean that we only work on the exterior when it’s going to be beneficial? Do guys feel that same pressure? Should I give a shit?

So many people talk about how it’s not what’s outside but what’s inside that counts but they WILL admit that they won’t talk to someone who looks like they quit giving a shit midway through getting dressed that morning. I should know, I’ve worn t-shirts to events and have had no one talk to me vs when I’ve had a button down on and people are demanding to know all about you. We don’t encourage people to be the weirdos they can be because sometimes your weird isn’t the kind of weird other people want to celebrate. This is especially painful to watch in women and girls.

At 12 we’ve already made a girl feel bad about being good at sports, being dirty and playing rough. By 21, she’s already got a complex about how she looks in certain outfits to best reduce the odds of being harassed. By 31, she doesn’t give a shit but misses her 12 year old self because that one was so much stronger back then than she is now. We spend millions of precious moments on looking better thinking we’ll feel better but we really should pay attention to what’s being said. You’re about as good as the last outfit and you look a mess today.

Place yourself as you are next to the ideal and watch how terrible you feel. It’s not until a normal person, someone also struggling with the same problems looks at you that you realize that that’s the reason you sort of give a shit. That one person who thinks that dirty t-shirt is amazing an the sloppy hair look is so you. That’s when you don’t care about the overall look and you care about yourself. Pretty people are always empowered or empowering others but what makes them so confident is that they stopped giving a shit and someone noticed. Or they say they don’t give a shit. People are attracted to the things that make them feel better and they hold onto it to give them the strength to improve and most of the time, those things aren’t hair products, skin regimes or fashion.

No one has it figured out really. There is no formula for successful self acceptance and anyone that tells you they’ve found it is a liar. The reason why you even start thinking about these kinds of things in the first place is because you want to know WHAT IT ALL MEANS. Why in many parts of the metropolitan United States there are strip malls dedicated to beauty, wellness, nail and hair salons, damn near identical store fronts with buzzing neon signs or funny looking awnings. You want to know why we care about HOW WE LOOK TO OTHER PEOPLE. You should always impress yourself before you want to impress others, that’s where the joy comes from. The idea that you can just walk through life being as normal or outlandish as possible is what makes you something to look out for.

When you’re pretty, the world seems to be handed to you, when you’re average, you bring the world to it’s knees. Think about it. Helen of Troy; they launched a war based off of how pretty she was. Know who was fighting over her? Two average dudes. Conventionally attractive people are able to get people to do things for them while average people are doing the things and pretty people are just being pretty. If you’re pretty, or attractive, people are more likely to listen to you while if you’re average, they’ll be impressed you are functioning in this society. Nevermind the fact that you wrote whatever pretty person is saying.

Actually you know what?

You can be pretty and be smart. Let’s stop being assholes about this.

You should however be allowed to be a bit messy and still be seen as a decent human being.

As I’m sitting here inhaling nail polish and acrylic, I see that there’s a whole world of people who will happily conform to the idealized head cannon beauty and you know what, that’s cool. What’s fascinating is that the need to be acceptable is a global truth; these women make a living making other women feel better about themselves and maybe talk shit about what they’re doing to get that cheap high. Western standards aren’t global ideals just yet but they are getting there, so long as salons like the one described exist. The women in the nail salon are just doing the dance to make something happen and the women who are doing the dancing will always do it because there’s something that needs to be done for them to feel that same cheap high. They haven’t discovered that you shouldn’t give a shit what other people think. We need them around because you have to remember that who you are is you and even if people giggle about you as you try to smarten up, you’re still you and that’s your truth.

Beauty fades, that’s why there are so many old time filters on instagram.