Hi, I’m Danielle Signor,

a web designer and blogger living in far-northern California. I'm interested in spaceflight, gemstones, poetry, geology, science fiction, unicorns and Sailor Moon. Mostly I make websites (since 1996), but I also make jewelry, and I like really old stuff.

The world will never starve for want of wonders; but only for want of wonder.

― G. K. Chesterton


So I’m left-handed, which you may not have known. This has proven sometimes challenging when learning new skills — a right-handed friend teaching me to crochet was a hilarious experience, in hindsight, but frustrating at the time. (Excuse me while I write you a smudgy note, then run into a door because it doesn’t open the way I’m expecting.)

When I was a senior in high school, my parents bought me a very exhaustive book of college scholarships one could apply for. I was somewhat intrigued to find there were scholarships specifically for lefties, until I realized they were listed in the section covering various disabilities (blind, deaf, etc.) Harsh.

I hadn’t thought much about my left-handedness until near-adulthood. Those stupid desks in high school and college never had an armrest on the “right” side, for me. I was fairly inured to struggling to write in a spiral notebook or a three-ring binder. Occasionally dooring myself in the face, or never quite mastering the drinking fountain, I chalked up to being somewhat a klutz. Until my freshman year of high school, nobody had bothered to show me what side of the plate I should stand on, as a left-handed batter; I’ll never be athletic, but I wonder now how much “klutz” was actually just being… reversed.

On a freeway, I like to be in the left lane, and on a two-lane road, I hug the center line. I vividly remember the instructor remarking during my first driving lesson, “Boy, you LOVE that center line.” I think he couldn’t quite figure it out. Now I know it’s because I have a left master eye, and you steer where you look, subconsciously. This is also the reason I hate backing up (and part of why I dreaded parallel parking for many years), because I have to look over my right shoulder, and use the wrong eye.

My parents raised a stink when I started school, to keep me left-handed, which I appreciate, but it has its drawbacks. I realize now that there were probably many times growing up when I assumed I was bad at something, when probably I just needed to be shown how to do it oppositely. Unintentionally, my left-handedness dealt a huge blow to my self-esteem, all these years. (I also had a big problem with not trying again, or trying harder, having concluded “I’m bad at that”. Still working on that one.)

And now, I think, why didn’t I just use the spiral notebooks back-to-front? Or write on the left pages, and turn it, write on the right pages upside-down? Better yet, get top-bound legal pads? (I stockpile a favorite size/brand, I use them for work all the time.) Why didn’t it dawn on me earlier than now(ish) that, hey, any skill or technique someone tries to show me needs to be flipped, or at least, rethought? (How I held a crochet hook, for instance, was not a mirror-flip. Took us about twenty minutes to figure it out. Now I can afghan with the best of them.)

I’m not, actually, “dumb” or “bad” at everything. It’s more that I tend to automatically do most things* in a reverse fashion, and that doesn’t always produce desirable results. (I also tend to rush, which is probably how I end up hitting my face with the door.) I’ve learned to live in this world, but it’s not really built for me. That’s all.

*I’ve never been able to use left-handed scissors. I scizz with my right. I dunno.

The best is perhaps what we understand least.

— C. S. Lewis

On Sailor Moon fandom, maturity, and some ranting.

I’m a big, long-time Sailor Moon fan, in case you didn’t know that. Seventeen-year-old-fansite-big, big fan. Sailor Moon launched my web design career. True fact.

At the time (late 1990s), it was not particularly “cool” to be a Sailor Moon fan, what with the particularly dreadful dubbed, heavily edited anime airing on North American tv. (Ooooh, look what I said! YES, THE DUB WAS HORRIBLE. GET OVER IT, DUB-FANS.) It’s still probably not cool, but I don’t really care anymore. (A sign of maturity?) My fandom has had a resurgence recently, with the debut of an anime reboot, Sailor Moon Crystal. And I am LOVING. IT. It follows the manga storyline much more closely than the original anime, and boy, animation has gotten amazingly beautiful over the past 20 years! (Compare.)

So. I was reading the #SailorMoonCrystal hashtag on Twitter today, as I am wont to do, rolling my eyes at the complainers. I just don’t get why so many people have issues with Sailor Moon Crystal. I think it’s a great improvement over the original anime. So I said something. Felt good. And I don’t care what anyone thinks of what I said, which is kindof a big step for me. (Sad but true.)

I don’t expect everyone to agree with me. The Sailor Moon fandom is infamous for its amazing, continuous in-fighting — dubbed vs. subbed, anime vs. manga, etc. Basically, there is no satisfying them. As someone remarked to me, people just like to complain…Continue Reading

The fan awakens.

And by “fan” I mean, me. And by “awakens”, I mean KERMIT-FLAILING.