I was tagged by a friend to list ten random things I like. It's a good excuse for more positivity.
1) Becca. No, really, how can she not be the first item listed? I could do a list just about her because she is the single best thing to happen to me in my entire life.
2) Hugs. And hey, besides the human contact there's a physiological basis to chest compression bringing feelings of comfort. (Probably also ties into why I like corsets and latex, they're clothing that give you hug!)
3) An increase in fun comics featuring (and often created by) women, POC, and queer individuals. Squirrel Girl, Ms Marvel, Patsy Walker: Hellcat, Lumberjanes, Goldie Vance, Kim & Kim... the list is just getting longer and longer and I love it.
4) An increase in the celebration and expression of diversity in the upcoming generation. The news often frames it as whining about feelings, but that's how your generation was portrayed as you grew up, and your parents' generation, and your parents' parents' generation, and so on. That's how progress works, each subsequent generation feeling that things can and should be better.
5) Characters. When it comes to stories it's the interesting, multi-faceted characters that win me over. You can have a cliched or nigh incomprehensible plot but if the characters pull me in then I'm there 100%. Characterization is why I fell in love with Transformers (and loathe the Bay movies so much). The toys all had individual bios, and while they talked about their abilities they also highlighted their unique personalities. Thundercracker isn't just a robot that turns into a jet, he's a guy who's not committed to the Decepticon cause and is mainly there because that's the side in the war his friends took. Trailbreaker doesn't just turn into a truck and project forcefields, he tries to act as team cheerleader by offering support and encouragement while at the same time he feels like a burden on his team because of his inefficient over-consumption of fuel.
6) Craftily woven long form storytelling. I'm talking about little offhand comments or background things that turn out to be majorly significant years later. I'm so delighted to see an author showing that depth and forethought that it makes me squee. James Roberts on Transformers: More Than Meets The Eye is a king of this, everything is significant either to revealing insight into the character or as a plot development down the road.
7) Functional art. Art, anything deserving of being called art, does something more than simply exist. But some things take another step. Architecture and fashion are some of the best examples of things which are at their best when they are emotionally evocative, communicate something from the creator, and function as what they are meant to be. Transformers toys (you knew I wasn't done with them) are miraculous feats of artistic engineering. And the illustrations in comic books aren't just snapshots, they need to construct a narrative flow. So many other examples exist, they all delight me.
8) Empathy. It is the key to our humanity. How sad are those people without empathy? To say nothing of how they ruin the world, without empathy how can they know or appreciate being loved? Any positive societal progress is made by empathy uniting us to move forward.
9) Feeling cute. One might even say kawaii. I don't get to feel that way too often but I'm working on it. I'm trying to be me.
10) Helping people feel good about themselves. Those times I can get out of the clouds in my own head and brighten someone's day are when all's right with the world.