F3, Day Three! One voice to thrill them all, and Armitage to bind them!
Welcome to Day Three of FanstRAvaganza 3, with twenty new posts for you to enjoy!
The links below will appear during the event day, between midnight and midnight, London time. They may not all appear at once. If you missed any of the previous posts, they are all indexed here.
In the tagteams, Day Three: F3 brightens up “hump day”!
In fanfic, Maria Grazia presents an interview with Trudy Brasure and giveaway of her book, A Heart for Milton • C.S. Winchester helps new authors get their feet wet writing fanfic • In freeform, ChrisB continues the alphabet with “B is for Beard-Love” • jazzbaby1 puts John Porter in the hands of Frank Spotnitz • Agzy outs Armitage characters as dog lovers • In fandom, fedoralady recommends the right tunes for your Armitage fanvid • Rose Gisborne describes her Armitage day • In the Hobbit, IngeD3 reveals the deeper meaning of the dwarfs’ hoods • Ana Cris reflects on Armitage and Maori ceremony, part 1, and part 2 • In King Richard Armitage, Fabo offers some choices to play Anne Neville • Links to all FanstRA 3 posts appear here at the end of each day!
F3 core, Day Three:
bccmee on the incompetent but gorgeous Lucas North • CDoart on Richard Armitage & women • fitzg (guesting at Confessions of a Watcher) divulges a classified memo from the DG of MI-5 on Lucas’s return to Section D • RAFrenzy on Richard Armitage’s thinking • Nat with a Richard Armitage interactive crossword puzzle • Traxy on family relationships and Ordeal by Innocence • Fanny interviews Wattpad author Stella del Nord • Jonia on how she keeps herself from thinking she needs to marry Richard Armitage • and mulubinba on location scouting for The Hobbit • Links to all FanstRA 3 posts appear here at the end of each day!
F3, Day Three at “me + richard armitage”? I’ve never been as broadly successful as Didion with evangelizing for North & South, but I humbly present my only relevant success story.
In my last job, I found a way to incorporate North & South into my large introductory course. It totally fit, as the class covered the period of history treated in the book and film. I would have had them read Engels’ Condition of the Working Class in England, probably, or something by J.S. Mill for this period, so the themes fit. My only reservation was that until I showed this series, I had never shown a non-contemporary film in the class at all. Usually, I only show either historical footage, or films that represented a particular Zeitgeist when they appeared. History is complicated enough that (a) actual history is often / usually more interesting than fiction and (b) introducing a historical film into a history classroom can confuse students because they tend to conclude that the film says something “true” about history rather than being a contemporary representation of it. North & South broke my rules, even though it was a serialization of novel contemporary to the period of study. But I found a good way to incorporate it into my course theme, and it made a nice break right around mid-term from heavy reading that includes The Wealth of Nations and The Communist Manifesto.
I was nervous, though, so the first time, I asked the advice of my (male) TA (teaching assistant). The conversation took place just before his second semester with me, and although we are now great friends, I think we made poor first impressions on each other because we were both going through difficult life events at the time. He struck me as prickly, initially; (too) brusque; and even a little Aspergery. I was wrong about those judgments. As we worked through the first semester, he turned into a real colleague: both knowledgeable and incisive, and also a good teacher. Normally I wouldn’t ask a TA about the content of my syllabus, but my growing respect for him drove me to consult him, and I asked, specifically, “do you think this is too girly?” I will always remember his response, which was, essentially, that every book I’d assigned the class to read was written by a man, and yet I wasn’t asking whether the class was too “boy-y.” (Working as a female prof with a male TA can be tricky for all kinds of reasons, but one of the great things about this guy is that he’s a total gender egalitarian.)
So we assigned it. I gave the students a few options for watching it online, but I supplied him with a (new) copy of it. (Faculty sometimes receive free instructional copies of materials, but when the publisher doesn’t deliver, I simply buy the materials for the TA myself.) It turned out that our library didn’t have a copy of it, either, and as course materials need to be on physical reserve “just in case,” I also had to buy a (new) copy for the library. We completed that portion of the course — it was a great success; something like 60 percent of students chose to incorporate North & South in their papers for that segment — but he admitted to me, with no apparent shame, that he hadn’t used the DVD. “I tossed it into my car,” he said, “and I couldn’t find it that week, so I just watched it online like the students did.” Oh, well, that’s how these things go, I thought. Since I knew I’d be teaching the class again the subsequent semester with a different TA, I thought about asking for it back, but I never do that with books. I left it.
About six months later, that TA started dating a (in my opinion wonderful) fellow graduate student. It was a big step; he was coming off a relationship where he’d been heavily exploited by his partner, at least partially with his own cooperation, and he had gone through a period of low trust for almost everyone around him, but a lot of things had happened for him in that year and he started making himself vulnerable again. I suspect it was love, or at least extreme emotional attraction, at first sight. I was really happy when he told me, at some point when I asked if he wanted to have coffee, “well, now I have a girlfriend.” Several weeks passed before I got to meet her, though.
When I did, at a dinner with him and another a colleague of mine, she told me an interesting story. On their first date, she got into the car, and for some reason, that night his car chose to cough up the North & South DVD it had been hiding all of those months. She picked it up off the floor or wherever she saw it and said, “Is this yours? A romance? Do you like historical romances?” and he said, “I’m not really into chick flicks, but this one’s not bad. I bet you would like it.”
“So he did think it was girly!” I said to her, and told her the story with him seated diagonally to me at the table. He laughed.
“He watched it with me, though,” she said. “Twice.” And she leaned over and rubbed her cheek against his shoulder.
[This tale is, against my own inclination, unabashedly sweet, although I'm not sure if I or the car was ultimately responsible. Or maybe -- just maybe -- it was my TA.]
My favorite of the charities Richard Armitage has raised money for on JustGiving is Childline. If you liked this post or appreciate Armitage’s work, please consider making a donation of yourself. Demand for the service in most of the UK is up, and in some places only a portion of calls can be answered. As always, many worthy causes deserve our support, but this week I’m blogging to draw attention to this one. Thanks for listening.
For more F3 reading: In fanfic, Maria Grazia presents an interview with Trudy Brasure and giveaway of her book, A Heart for Milton • C.S. Winchester helps new authors get their feet wet writing fanfic • In freeform, ChrisB continues the alphabet with “B is for Beard-Love” • jazzbaby1 puts John Porter in the hands of Frank Spotnitz • Agzy outs Armitage characters as dog lovers • In fandom, fedoralady recommends the right tunes for your Armitage fanvid • Rose Gisborne describes her Armitage day • In the Hobbit, IngeD3 reveals the deeper meaning of the dwarfs’ hoods • Ana Cris reflects on Armitage and Maori ceremony, part 1, and part 2 • In King Richard Armitage, Fabo offers some choices to play Anne Neville • Links to all FanstRA 3 posts appear here at the end of each day!