That is just the kind of day it is already being. From discovering why I should never take time off work (how can THAT MANY things go wrong in one day?!), to getting a review from someone who seems to be reading a different fanfic than I'm writing (Hermione apparently "obsesses" over Draco and "treats Ron like a dog")...
And now there's Twitter. It seems Twitter is the great key to social media success and every author should tweet at least twice a day! Except that my life isn't exactly tweet-worthy. It's barely life-worthy. I'm amazed that I manage to come up with a Facebook status every day and a blog post four times a week. I work, I write, that's it.
So my frustration with this day is truly massive. What to do, what to do... I've got it! I'll blog about cats and how well they handle things that start with the letter D! And first up we have my two personal cats (well, mine and the roommate's) and their strange little love-hate-HISS relationship with our pair of overly happy dogs.
Weirdly, if the cats are in their own room and the dogs walk by, or even stick their heads a little ways inside, the cats seldom react. If we pick up the cats and carry them to where the dogs can see them, though, they freak out. And let's not even mention what happens if they get caught on the wrong side of the baby gate!
Astoundingly, neither dog has yet been clawed, though there has been a great deal of hissing and growling, plaintive meowing, and the occasional smack to the muzzle. As long as there's no blood shed on either side, I think we're good, though of course dogs and cats do not get access to one another when we are not home to supervise.
Now on to the fictional counterpart of this relationship, or rather its reversal: the cats and dragons, or lyrror and mazor, of the world of Trycanta. And the reason I mention reversal is that in my household, the dogs are the noisy, rambunctious ones and the cats are quieter and more dignified. On Trycanta, the opposite is most often true.
The dichotomy in speculative fiction between a race which is more reserved and formal than humanity and a race which is earthier and more uninhibited is a long-standing one. Tolkien used it, casting elves in the former role and dwarves (and, in some respects, hobbits) in the latter, and many contemporary authors follow his lead.
On the science fiction side of the spectrum, probably the best known example would be Star Trek. The calm logic of the Vulcans and the fierce warrior attitude of the Klingons, and the ways in which both races interact with human beings, has been one of the longest-standing sources of tension and interest in every Star Trek series.
So, on Trycanta, the mazor have a culture which is guided strongly by custom, with emphasis on the greatest good of the group. The lyrror, by contrast, tend to organize things to please their individual selves and perhaps their own families or tribes. This, understandably, is the source of a great deal of tension between the two races.
The arrival of human beings on Trycanta was something of a tiebreaker between mazor and lyrror, since they had never thought their outlooks could be reconciled. But the humans, to both races' astonishment, observed some customs very strongly while letting others go, as their circumstances, needs, and desires dictated.
So, let's hear from you, readers. What customs, observances, etc. do you tend to hang onto, especially in this later part of the year as the holiday season arrives? Which ones don't you follow, or wish other people wouldn't? (Christmas music... Christmas music EVERYWHERE...) Politely, please, but let your voice be heard!