Okay. Hi. I guess we’re doing this.
My name is Alex K. Masse. Some people know me as Fairything, the alias I make a lot of artsy stuff under.
And I guess this is my website. It’s part of a course I’m taking in university, but I’ve kind of always wanted to try blogging, and I guess this was the nudge I needed.
The one thing my prof and TA both pressed was figuring out who I am and what I want to talk about. That’s… interesting, for me. I’ve always had a whole bunch of interests, and maybe it’s just how my brain works, but I really like divvying them up into separate spaces. Even as an awkward band geek in high school: I had six different Tumblr accounts (personal, aesthetic, lesbian history, podcasts, books, and reference), three different Instagrams (personal, spam, art), and just generally kept everything separate.
But my main consistency has been that I really, really, really like art and media. Of all kinds. Books, TV, music, podcasts, movies… you name it, I have a hundred opinions.
So, I’m gonna do the objectively questionable thing and be comically broad. But also, simultaneously, rather specific.
Stay with me here. I have a plan. I swear.
In case you somehow haven’t picked up on it, I both create and consume a lot of art in my free time. So, I might try that as a format for my weekly posts: what I’ve been creating, and what I’ve been consuming, alongside some things I’ve learned or otherwise come to and feel like sharing.
For example: this weekend, I had my first-ever live solo gig as part of a variety night. It was called Judith Fair, and it was put on by Alley Theatre for the Vancouver Fringe Festival, which has been going on longer than I’ve been alive. This was their 36th year! Look, that’s me.
It was delightful. Like, that’s really what I have to start with. You don’t realize how much you miss the local arts scene until you’re actually there, which in my case meant racing around Granville Island in my suit and chatting with other artists. We complained about how expensive instruments were, we complained about the weather, we traded advice on fashion and makeup…
The main takeaway I have from this is that your people are your medicine. Sure, I felt grody the morning after, having been outside all night in what at the time was literally the world’s worst air quality, but for me, being around artists makes it worth it. It also helped that Judith Fair was specifically a variety night of women and non-binary performers. It gave us another thing we all had in common!
You wouldn’t have thought such a night would work if you saw it on paper. It opened with a storyteller, who was followed by a stand-up artist, then it was a poet-musician playing a 20-year-old guitar synth (that was me!), and then a metal artist… and it just gets more bizarre. More stand-up and more poetry, but also a burlesque show, and we ended with a stage combat performance!
But by the end of it, we were tight as could be. If not for, you know, the pandemic, I don’t doubt it would’ve ended in a group hug.
If there’s one other thing to take home, it’s that people are resilient. Like, the producer and tech team looked at a pandemic and said, “We can work with this.” And they did! We all had separate microphones, and the artists and audience never got close to each other, and everything was outdoors. The odds were really stacked against us, but we made things work.
(Unless two weeks from now it’s revealed we had COVID exposure, in which case… oops.)
Now, I did also mention that I’d talk about media I consumed this week. This’ll be quicker, because I really went off about Judith Fair. (And I’ll be going off about it again soon, be warned.)
This week, I’ve fallen back into an old fixation of mine: the Moomins franchise. Specifically, I’m watching Moominvalley, the latest entry in the canon. Moomins is a peculiar thing, in a whole bunch of ways. For many, it’s a cherished series they grew up with, comparable to, say, Winnie the Pooh.
But also, with the release of Moominvalley, Moomins received a major popularity surge. This surge was especially major in the LGBT+ community, as the creator of Moomins, Tove Jansson, was herself sapphic. Many have gone on to see the themes in her work. For example, there are characters like Thingumy and Bob, who were almost definitely based on Tove and her girlfriend at the time. People have literally written essays about how the two represent the secrecy required of same-sex relationships at the time.
Moominvalley continues the trend. In the last episode I saw, Thingumy and Bob made their debut as a pair of runaways who were inseparable, even sharing a bed in one scene. They carry around a briefcase, which holds a ruby many believe symbolizes the love they hold for each other, as it’s only shown to people they trust.
Moominvalley is definitely different from the other Moomin content I’ve consumed, which mostly focused on the franchise’s whimsical nature. Instead, it’s… wackier. It feels faster-paced, and there’s definitely more emphasis on humour. It’s strange, but I honestly don’t mind. The series feels modern, which makes sense, because… well, it is.
Anyways, I was going to write a whole essay about the relations and coding of other characters, but I’ve gone off long enough. This is the kind of quality content you can expect from this website. The plan is to make two posts a week: one that’s in this created/consumed format, and another that’s more reflective, discussing processes and such from class.
Yes, I just wrote all of this for class.
And if you’re my prof or TA, I offer my condolences.
See you next time.