Chat thread! :D

Chatterbox: Down to Earth

Chat thread! :D

Chat thread! :D

submitted by Lupine@BB&Peregrine, age 14,she/her, Platform 9 and 3/4
(October 13, 2021 - 7:40 pm)
submitted by top!
(January 2, 2022 - 4:20 pm)
submitted by top : )
(January 2, 2022 - 6:46 pm)

Happy New Year! We didn't do a Japanese new year celebration this year, but we had my grandma over and the next day we went skiing. @Bobcat, you're so lucky to live in Hawaii! One of my best friends moved to the big island when I was 8, so I've gotten to visit her twice and I LOVE IT SO MUCH. The Hawaiian culture, food, language, music, and landscape are all so beautiful. I think my family is going again over spring break, but I'm not sure which island. Obviously because of my rant, I'm not from Hawaii, but I fell in love with spam musubi on my first trip there.

I didn't really make any resolutions, but every year I tell myself I'm going to practice my violin more (and usually I practice less, because every year I get more homework aaaah). 

Have you guys read any good books lately? I just finished The Swallows' Flight by Hilary McKay, and it was really good. It's about World War Two. Right now I'm in the middle of The Way Past Winter and the young readers' edition of Hidden Figures

submitted by Lupine , Beauxbatons
(January 3, 2022 - 9:25 pm)

(Most of this is addressed to Lupine, sorry) First off: @Lupine, I heard there were wildfires in Colorado, where you were visiting. Are you guys okay? 

Also, I don't actually live in Hawaii anymore :( I was born there, but then my dad got a job in the midwest, so that's where we are now. It's hard to get a lot of my favorite foods, which is sad.

For New Year there was toshikoshi soba, which was very good, and then ozoni, mochi, and butter mochi in the morning. That night my dad made tempura, which turned out to be very good. 

@Lupine, sorry about the homework :( I wish you luck : )

I'm getting a lot better at vibrato and can apply it a bit to my songs, but it makes my hand and fingers get tired quicker because I've only been working on it for maybe 4-5 weeks??? Anyway, I've been trying to multitask by working on my pieces while adding in vibrato. And metronome practice. It's harder than it looks.

Apparently we still had some frozen poi left (!!!!) so I'm waiting for it to cool at the moment. You have to microwave it to get it to turn into a liquid, so it gets pretty hot. 

You said you wanted to hear more about my book so *pulls up a chair* The main character's name is Kalili Pumaqhawa Nakamura Quispe. Kalili Pumaqhawa is aer first name, Nakamura Quispe aer last name; ae's part Peruvian (also part Japanese and Native Hawaiian) and from my research, two first names and two last names is a common naming thing there. (Specifically, ae is from somewhere around Cusco, definitely Andean.) Ae is one of my favorite characters ever. Because we're talking about Kalili Pumawhawa: *hot chocolate and cookies with sprinkles appear* Ae loves hot chocolate and sprinkles and cookies : ) Ae's fourteen by the way.

I'm going to go check on my poi now so I'll stop here. @Lupine, have you ever had poi? If so, what did you think of it?

submitted by Blackfooted Bobcat
(January 5, 2022 - 8:43 pm)

I'm going to be out of town for a while but I'll try to respond as soon as I can :)

submitted by Lupine
(January 7, 2022 - 10:23 pm)

(I've been editing this for like at least like 40 minutes because I keep going on rants and tangents XD)

I am aware of the whole thing with people of color being stereotyped as criminals, by the way. I'm working to avoid that particular issue. I could talk about things I’m doing to minimize the harm (and also I think that Kalili Pumaqhawa is well-developed enough not to just be seen as a stereotype) but I won’t make you read through that. Because hey, why not do better in my work than what I've seen with Japanese people in books? (Although it doesn't take much to have the decency not to have an antagonistic Japanese character who was, like, only there to get a... pretty racist comment told to her, and then even the book treated it like a joke. It's possible it was resolved later, but I'm not going to read later. Please stop, authors. Please just stop.)

So yeah, there's my ramble, regardless of whether or not you cared XD

submitted by Blackfooted Bobcat, age Violincats, Violist and Books
(January 9, 2022 - 9:02 am)

And oops I didn't specify here that ae's a criminal! In the book, there was a starcraft raiding and ae and aer sister got seperated; aer sister got picked up and put into officer/guard training school and ae got picked up by a space pirate ship. Ae hates hurting others, though, which prooooobably doesn't make aem the best space pirate, but I mean ae's pretty heavily wanted and underage for any kind of work (child labor is outlawed in aer current district) and ae looks way younger than ae is, so it's kind of aer only option. And aer parents are dead, of course. On that cheerful note, I was just explaining.

submitted by Blackfooted TOPcat
(January 10, 2022 - 8:04 pm)
submitted by top!
(January 7, 2022 - 4:00 pm)
submitted by top : )
(January 12, 2022 - 12:45 pm)

I'm finally back! Sorry it took me so long to respond. 

About the wildfires, we left Colorado one day before the fire started. It was near where some of my relatives live but luckily they were all fine. I heard that like a thousand houses burned down which is kind of horrifying.

I live in the west, so it's not too hard to get Asian food, especially if we go to California. I've been to a few good Hawaiian restaurants in my town but I don't know how authentic they are. I've tried poi and it was...interesting. I know that a lot of people really like it so it'd probably grow in me if I ate it more often. 

Congrats on your vibrato! It's really hard to get going when you first start but it definitely makes your playing sound a lot better. 

Your book sounds really cool! As a mixed person, I appreciate that the protagonist is mixed. There is almost no good representation for mixed people in books! I agree that the stereotype of criminals being POC is really messed up--one stupid example is the movie based off the Avatar the Last Airbender tv show. I watched a few minutes of it and though in the show basically all of the characters are Asian, in the movie the main characters were all white but still wearing Asian clothes.....and then the bad guy was Asian. So I didn't finish watching the movie. But I think you're doing a good job avoiding stereotypes from what I can tell. I also love the protagonist's name. 

That's all I have for now! @Peregrine, how are you doing? 

submitted by Lupine , age she/her, Gondor
(January 13, 2022 - 3:03 pm)

Just quickly before I post later:

I'm so glad you and your family are okay. The fires are still horrible, but I'm glad that you're safe : )

submitted by Blackfooted Bobcat
(January 13, 2022 - 7:10 pm)

Hello, I'm still here!  I do apologize for not responding to anything for a while.  I haven't had much time to write a long post and I've been a bit overwhelmed with my life off of Chatterbox.

I am very glad you and your family escaped the Colorado fire.  It's terrible, so much was lost.  I really hope everyone will be able to recover quickly.

I think it was Feline Fantasy or Fidelity who posted the pictures of the cakes on the Art Thread?  It definitly wasn't me.  I can cook things that usually taste good, and they usually look edible too but most of the time they don't look like works of art.  I did arrange a pretty peach tart once though, it looked like a yellow rose (and it was delicious).

I was looking at the pictures you recently posted on the Art Thread, Lupine.  They look so good!  I especially love the witch gazing upward with the black star-speckled circle background.

I don't tend to make New Year goals.  I just make goals as I need them.  Recently I started doing weekly violin goals that I try to achieve over a week of practice.  I might go to daily, or do both.  I was starting to get a stagnant practice and the weekly goal really helped give me direction.  I might have to go to daily goals as I am starting to get a little stagnant again.

I recently finished The Beatryce Prophecy by Kate DiCamillo.  It has a simple writing style, so it's a very quick read, but it is a sweet book and I enjoyed it a lot.

Congrats on your vibrato, Bobcat!  Vibrato is a lot of work to learn, and it's something you will work on polishing always.   It adds so much to the music, so it is definitly worth learning.  Be careful when multitasking, sometimes what happens is nothing gets done well, just a tip!  Remember to take breaks when you hand gets tired and be sure that your finger, hand, wrist, arm, and shoulder is loose, loose, loose.

Your book about Kalili Pumaqhawa sounds really interesting.  I get frustrated with people who write books about minority people just because the book will sell.  Most of the books I've found are horrible quality (the writing clunky, the main character is a flat piece of paper made to act like a person) and I quit them soon after I start becasue it just isn't worth my time to read it.  Your character sounds really well developed, not at all like a piece of paper.  I wish you ease in writing Kalili Pumaqhawa's story and the world ae lives in.

I was knitting a pair of mittens with a cool textured pattern on the back of the hand.  I made one mitten, and the second one – minus a thumb because I ran out of yarn.  I was given the yarn, and I think it may be hand spun which will make a hard to find the same yarn to finish the mitten.  For now it's on pause and I will knit a hat.

submitted by Peregrine, the Ford of Bruinen
(January 14, 2022 - 1:15 pm)

No problem you couldn't post, @Peregrine! Glad you found the time to, though. I wish you luck with life outside the CB : )

Just wanted to point out, while we're on the topic, that the point of Ploys, Guards, and Criminal Escapes (Kalili Pumaqhawa's book) is not race, gender, orientation (ae's aroace because I refuse to write any romance whatsoever), or disabilities (I haven't mentioned that ae also happens to be autistic, ADHD, and have balance issues, all of which I also do). I'd say the point is the divided loyalties between aer sister and aer best friend. I just want to see people with similar things to me go on quests to find fantasy artifacts or have fun space battles! Well, there aren't actually too many far-range space battles in this world because of the technicalities of far-distance combat, but you know. Interestingly from what you said about people sometimes writing marginalized characters because the book will sell, I'm actually concerned that Kalili Pumaqhawa is too marginalized to get published and have anyone read aem, largely because ae's LGBTQA+ and it's a children's book. As I have learned from the American Girl Doll Girl of the Year Kira, who goes to stay at a wildlife sanctuary run by her lesbian aunts, people are not happy about LGBTQIA+ people in children's books (PGaCE is upper middle grade). But it'll be a while before I get it published if I ever do, so I can worry about that in a long time.

I usually have daily goals, even if I don't write them out. My teacher talked a lot about keeping my hand, fingers, and shoulders loose, and I've found that I need to work on pressing lighter on the string when stopping it so I can do vibrato on other notes. Good tip on making sure I'm not practicing the wrong thing while multitasking, by the way. I'm not going to be using super much at the moment because I'm doing baroque music mostly, but I still use/will use it as an ornament. 

Lupine, it's so cool there are several Hawaiian restaurants near you! The nearest thing to me is, like, three hours away.  

I made apple-cinamon muffins this morning. There are still some because I made a double batch. They're pretty good. 

My parents let me sign up onto a website that teaches you Japanese, so I'm a lot better at it than I was two-and-a-half days ago. I've already gotten 5 hours of study in (it tracks how long you've spent studying) because there's a seven-day trial of a feature you have to pay for that gives you more stuff and I want to get the most out of it. 

This is long and I don't know what else to say so I'll post this now. 

submitted by Blackfooted Bobcat
(January 14, 2022 - 5:22 pm)

Just wanted to say that I made an azuki bean cake with coconut frosting. For the azuki bean cake, I took a recipe and modified it by adding more cornstarch, adding a half cup of azuki beans, and a few other changes like taking out the vanilla and using much less sugar. Then I made coconut frosting with coconut cream (the solid part in the coconut milk can), butter, and (so much) powdered sugar. I've yet to taste it together, but both are good by themselves. I'm worried the strong flavor of the frosting will overpower the more delicate flavor of the cake, but we'll see. 

How are you guys doing? 

submitted by Blackfooted TOPcat
(January 21, 2022 - 8:25 pm)
submitted by Top please!
(January 23, 2022 - 12:48 pm)