What should I write about today? If I am asking then maybe I’m not a writer, right? The again I have known that I wanted to write since I was 5. Yes 5 and I have Patrick Dempsey to thank. Sure, he’s good looking, he drives race cars, and he can juggle but did you know that in 1989 he was in a movie where he was a writer? Patrick Dempsey and Helen Slater (and Brad Pitt don’t forget Brad Pitt) are cemented as my eternal muses for convincing me that not only could I but I had to write and I should. Re-Watching these clips gives me a much greater appreciation for Marius Weyers. I may not always have an idea or a topic, I may not always be good, and sometimes I may just suck it up but every day I think about it and that is all the encouragement I need. (P.S. If anyone can get this movie on DVD I would LOVE a copy!)
Friday, January 24, 2014
So- I have realized as of late that music has been resonating with me in a way like it never has before. I have been listening to this song on repeat for weeks because the beat and the sound of it has been moving me to do so I suppose. I keep seeing an army of soldiers in loin-cloths, with chiseled muscles, and spears singing the chant. Today, I finally read the lyrics and I think that this song was speaking to me on another level completely without me even realizing it.
If you close your eyes,
Does it almost feel like
Nothing changed at all?
And if you close your eyes,
Does it almost feel like
You've been here before?
If you close your eyes,
Does it almost feel like
Nothing changed at all?
And if you close your eyes,
Does it almost feel like
You've been here before?
Sunday, January 12, 2014
Nudity-I am not a fan. This applies to a lot of different things, sexes, all races, most ages. I just don’t like it. There is a difference of course about being comfortable around it. I don’t mind being naked myself -- at home around my significant other but that is it. See, I feel like my body is mine and his and we are the only ones that need to see it. You may be wondering (though I doubt it) why is she talking about nudity? What could possibly have gotten this idea in her strange weird little head? Well, a couple things.
- Lena Dunham
So during an interview she was asked why there is so much nudity in her show. She answered- an acceptable answer- that sometimes in life we are naked. Great. Fine. True. But then Judd Apatow and whatever other producer that no one ever talks about were there and went off on the reporter that asked the question. They compared it to asking someone from Mad Men about advertising. That, I think, is taking it a little too far. Nudity as a creative decision should be a part of the conversation about what we see on television regardless of the season the show is on, the channel, or the subject matter. If you are using nudity for a reason, and it isn’t just to be gratuitous then you should be more than willing to discuss that decision and how you came to it. I read the transcripts, I read several reviews, articles, reports, and tweets and I still after all that believe that the journalist was in no way acting in a manner that was sexist, offensive, or misogynistic as Judd Apatow would have everyone believe.
I am very torn over Girls to begin with. I feel on one hand I can easily identify with the girls in the show being young and trying to figure things out. However, i also see the ridiculous nature, the over the top drama, the story lines that happen every week that could really only happen over someones 80 year lifetime. It is beyond real and maybe that is in part why I like it but also why I hate it. I understand that we are all nude at some point. In the shower, right before I put clothes on when I get out of the shower, during/after/right before sex but really that’s it. I’m not naked walking around my apartment eating cottage cheese and flaming hot cheetos. I’m not naked doing laundry; there is an outfit for that- its called laundry-day pants with dragons. So I’d rather she be honest about it. I’m glad she’s comfortable showing her body - I wouldn’t be. I’m not at my size now, I wouldn’t be at her size, and I wouldn’t be if I still had the body I had at 19. To me it just isn’t necessary and she’s is doing it to be salacious and that I think is why the Girls people were really offended it was because they were compared to the nudity in Game of Thrones and they aren’t comfortable (they being Lena and Judd -first names because I totally know them) being in the same realm of sexy nudity as a show like that. To many people Girls is still just a joke and so they have to support their ‘creative’ decisions by saying something hipster-ish like the nudity expresses every day openness and the beauty of being a woman. Instead of - I like to be naked and I want you all to see my body! See the difference?
I don’t think the nudity is relevant or required for the script of Girls. It doesn’t add to the story or move the characters forward. Therefore- it could be toned down. But then it wouldn’t have to be on HBO.
- Yoga pantsSee the name itself is misleading, there is nothing pant-like about them other than the fact that the have a similar cut-out pattern. Pants are meant to cover your ass and your privates and most (i.e. all) yoga pants do no such thing. Normally, everyday, on a girl of small stature, you can see through the fabric to the skin. You might as well just wear nylons and a t-shirt because there would be no difference. What’s worse are the patterned ones. I heard this last week - “If your ass jiggles and you have a pattern like that on it I just feel like I am tripping.” That’s not okay, think of the recovering addicts that you are fucking with! Seriously, they aren’t pants. People I don’t care of what size or shape - should really keep that in mind. Wear them, every day if you want because for god’s sake they are comfortable but be mindful of the other people around you. Cover your ass and cover your cooter. It has nothing to do with how much you love your body and how other people should just learn to accept it. It is all about common decency and self respect. No one wants to see that and if they do that’s when there is a problem.
- Breast Feeding
I would breast feed if I ever had a child. Of course, that is unlikely but the fact remains. I have
I could go on and on and on but I’ll stop there. The more I say the more I am certain I will continue to get in trouble. I hate editing while I write but I understand that these are all very controversial topics that people are very passionate about and get very upset about very easily. My main point is that there is not need to be gratuitous with your body. I love myself, I love my body and I love only sharing it with my SO and occasionally my very neurotic and nosey dog. I don’t understand the average everyday persons need to expose themselves to everyone around them. It is no one else’s business so why are you making it that way? I don’t want to see it, I know I’m not the only one.
Friday, January 10, 2014
I thought a lot today about what I was going to write. I have been feeling guilty that I didn’t get around to it last night but well I didn’t. This morning I came across an article titled, “No Kidding: Women Writers and Comedians on the Choice Not to Have Children.” While the title may seem obvious to some it is the sentiment around it that I found most intriguing.
See, I don’t want children, I’ve never really wanted children. My mother will tell you, if you should ask her, that I shouldn’t have children because I am too selfish. Several years ago I thought this was an unfair assessment. I always had dolls (okay Cabbage Patch Kids) growing up. I have had nephews and nieces since I was 6. I babysat when I was old enough to the point that even after the family moved and had other kids they named one after me because I am so awesome. I just have never had the itch to have one for myself. That was until 3 1/2 years ago. That was when I was diagnosed with endometriosis (June 2010).
I had surgery and then at my follow-up appointment I heard the words. See my OBGYN at the time didn’t have great bedside manner, as in he never looked you in the eye. Maybe he was just more comfortable looking me in the cooter. Either way, I was in the examine room when he looked up at me and asked if I had ever thought I wanted children. I answered him honestly that I had never really wanted them but at the time it wasn’t only my decision and so I was open to the option. That’s when he told me, “Well you better get off the fence.” That is when I learned about my diagnosis and his prognosis for it. He told me that I had about a 6 month window to get pregnant if I wanted to do it and after that there would be a 99% chance it would never happen.
It scared me. For the first time in my life I felt the pressure of being a ‘woman.’ Of doing the one ‘job’ I had put on this planet to perform - bring more life to it. After some thought and consideration, numerous panic attacks, and more than one screaming throwing things bruise inducing fights I remembered that I didn’t want children. There was no reason for me to suddenly change my mind about a decision I had made when I was 7 at that moment simply because I was told I couldn’t. I don’t being like told I can’t do anything.
Unfortunately, this doesn’t stop anyone else from offering their unsolicited opinions about my choices. This books, it made me think about a recent trip I had to get a pedicure at a local salon. The ladies asked if I had kids and I told them that no I did not. Why, they asked. Because, I responded, I don’t want them. Like everyone else who hears this response their eyes got big and round, they sucked in a quick breath, then exhaled a stream of word vomit. You will change your mind. Kids are the best. You’ll see when you have one of your own. Everyone wants kids. It is different when they are yours. Your kids will be so cute. Why wouldn’t you want one? You can always decide later. You’ll see. You’ll have one and you will love it.
I found this to not only be an extremely uncomfortable conversation to begin with but it got to the point where I was mildly offended. My choices are not anyone else’s and what I choose or choose not to do has no effect on you or your choices. For these women to righteously judge me for a decision I made 22 years ago seemed absurd and for them to continue to harp on a subject that I have already belittled myself about, and lost myself in for years really pissed me off.
Not all women have children. Some because they don’t want to and some because they can’t. I happen to be one of the lucky ones - I don’t really want to and there is a good chance I can’t. It is really an uncomfortable situation to be in when everyone around you tells you that you will change your mind, that you’ll love having kids and you know you won’t or can’t. I have made peace, or pretty close to peace, with my decision but again I am the lucky one. There are so many women that suffer from this same disease that would give anything to get pregnant and deliver a happy healthy child but instead they are relegated to a being child-less. When those women are forced into similar situations, I find them to be the most brave women I know. I say that because if I wanted a child that badly and I knew I couldn’t have one and yet nosey righteous strangers told me I would change my mind I would likely punch them in the throat.
My last surgery was a year ago today. I just realized that fact while I was writing this piece, maybe that is why it was on my mind. Subconsciously I am still not zen and accepting of the entire diagnosis but what other choice do I truly have? I don’t have many as I see option dwindling every doctors visit. However, you have a choice. If a woman tells you she doesn’t want kids don’t push her. Don’t pressure her. Don’t tell her she’ll change her mind. You don’t know what she’s going through or has gone through to get to that decision or to a place where she feels comfortable telling you her choice. Simply be respectful and leave it be. Anyway, if she’s anything like me, if you push too hard she’ll just push you back and you may not like where you fall.
Wednesday, January 8, 2014
In Mr. English’s class senior year we discussed whether marijuana should be legalized (for those of you who don’t actually know me--that was 11 years ago- oy). He asked us to divide into those that believed it should be on one side of the room and those that didn’t to the other side. I stayed firmly seated on my side of the room in a belief that I hold still- marijuana should be legal. Back then I think I just felt that it didn’t make a lot of sense to me that it should be illegal. Marijuana is from a plant, it is natural, it can be organic. I also saw, even then, its potential for tax revenue and lucrative business earnings for small business and possibly a cash crop.
While I have not wavered on my feelings toward its legalization my knowledge of the ganja has grown significantly. I work in a substance abuse prevention library, we are all about preventing the abuse (not use just abuse) of substances, whether that is marijuana, alcohol, tobacco, cocaine, caffeine, or cheese. All things in moderation. When I was new to my position, literally weeks in, I went to a conference of other such librarians in all places - Berkeley. A representative from the dispensaries from the Bay Ares came to speak to us and handed out “Legalize Marijuana” stickers and “End the Drug War.” I had never really thought about it but seeing as we were a group of substance abuse librarians I assumed the groups position would be to ban everything. While that may be the feeling of a few of the members most were supportive of the cause.
Since then, every week I have read articles and research, op-eds, blogs, tweets - whatever - on both sides of the debate. It is important in my position to be fair and balanced. However, nothing has persuaded me to feel otherwise. Marijuana being addictive is debatable but mostly it is habit forming. Really it is no more addictive than say caffeine or carbs and those are legal and more likely to cause heart attack and stroke than any joint. CBD - the non psychoactive component - can be used to treat a variety of illnesses - seizures and tremors have been the most publicized (especially recently). THC - the psychoactive component can also be used to treat pain, nausea, migraines.. a lot of things. Not only that but the arrest and prosecution rates for small amounts are staggeringly racist, the money spent for prosecution and jail is in the millions every year, and illegal sales in America only support cartels from outside this country.
It is my belief that should this country, on a federal level, legalize marijuana recreationally and use it more openly in the medical community then we could pull out of this recession, reduce crime, block cartels, see decreases in the use of narcotics, and make real headway in mental health.
Is it for everyone? No but not everyone can have gluten either that doesn’t mean we are going to make it illegal. The most dangerous thing that I have found is that people are using marijuana any way without regulation or labeling so they could be smoking rosemary or they could be smoking pot laced with cocaine and they would never know until its too late. By legalizing and regulating buyers will be more aware of what they are ingesting. It is like adding nutritional information to vending machines, the more informed choices are better choices. Contrary to popular belief, marijuana can be cultivated into strains that have different properties for different uses but without labels how would anyone know?
For the first time since I think the 1960’s the majority of Americans are pro legalization, as of a few weeks ago a Gallup poll I believe had it at 58%. A large uptick came after Sanjay Gupta reversed his stance on it and his major reasoning was that the research being done around the world upholds compelling arguments for its legalization. Around the world being a key phrase because what I didn’t know until about a year ago, and what many many voters do not know, is the difficulty of doing pro marijuana research in this country. NIDA (National Institute of Drug Abuse) holds the key to any research being done with federal funds (which most research uses) however they are set up to only find potential harms in drugs not any potential benefits. Therefore, when a research grant proposal is sent to them seeking monies in order to study the potential of marijuana in pain reduction, or PTSD therapy, or as an anti-convulsant NIDA says no. Being as marijuana possession or consumption is still a federal crime on any level it doesn’t matter that research in other countries has shown benefit NIDA isn’t interested. They have an entire crop in a grow house in Mississippi and it just sits there and all of its potential dies every season. (In my quick running of the numbers, I calculated about 6% of the current U.S. marijuana studies investigate the benefits of medical marijuana. The rest are designed to investigate harm. That imbalance paints a highly distorted picture. -Gupta).
Marijuana is a Schedule I drug meaning the government sees no medical usage for it. However, morphine is schedule III and I can get a prescription for it from any doctor in the form of a patch to wear tomorrow. A narcotic hallucinogenic drug with 1 benefit is easier to get than a naturally growing plant that can benefit a multitude of patients. While the easiest argument I feel can be made for medical legalization don’t misconstrue that as being against recreational legalization. As the National Review (a notably conservative paper) argued:
- We make a lot of criminals while preventing very little crime, and do a great deal of harm in the course of trying to prevent an activity that presents little if any harm in and of itself
- Compared to binge drinking or alcohol addiction, marijuana use is a minor public-health concern.All that being the case, the price of prohibition is relatively high, whether measured in police and penal expenses or in liberty lost. The popularity of marijuana may not be the most admirable social trend of our time, but it simply is not worth suppressing
So as a recap:
- Business growth
- Untapped / exponential health benefits
- Tax Revenue for struggling states
- Better economy
- Labeling = Safety
- Cut down the cartels
- Save money on policing and prosecution
- Not more harmful than: caffeine, carbs, fat, alcohol
Tuesday, January 7, 2014
There are many many thoughts rambling through my head tonight. So many in fact I am having a hard time deciding what to write about. So instead of just one here are my top 3 thoughts of the day.
#1- Freedom of or from religion should apply equally to all.
Le Sigh. That is all I can really say about my feelings toward this one. I am not by any means religious and while I identified as Mormon growing up, agnostic in my teens and early 20’s, I now see myself as atheist. Atheism is not to be confused with satanism which has been in the news today.
The statue I think is rather funny I mean Satan looks like Santa talking to children and giving the peace sign. It is of course in retaliation for the Ten Commandments statute placed at the same building years before and as I read it is unlikely to ever be built given that a conservative middle-American capital has been selected to have the first one. Therein lies the rub doesn’t it? People don’t want to be persecuted for their beliefs, it doesn’t matter if they are Christian or not, however, it is not very Christian to strike something down because it doesn’t agree with your personal belief system. The same can be said for any such response to an idea or belief that does not agree with your personal dogma. I don’t care if it is racism, or sexism, ageism, bigotry toward the LGBTQ community or otherwise-- just because you don’t agree or feel the same way doesn’t mean that person or group of people doesn’t have the same right to feel what they feel. It is always a double standard and a double edged sword. It ruffles my feathers when an ally says everyone has to support gay marriage. They don’t. It really gets my goat that being part of the religious right is the only right religion. It really wrinkles my wiener when anyone thinks their thoughts, beliefs, opinions, ideas, or moral ground is the only one. It is not. Everyone has thoughts, beliefs, opinions, ideas, and a personal moral ground and is entitled to such by living in this country (I don’t intend to speak for any other country as I also believe in moral relativism).
I may believe differently than you and we can both believe differently than Joe the Plumber but that doesn’t make any one of us wrong. Just different and different is okay. So- if you are part of the religious right, the holier than though segment of the population that believes that everyone must agree as you do and behave as such, or if you are part of the lefty-left segment of the population that believes in rights for everyone as long as they are the rights you most feel empowered to uphold- then get a grip!
#2- Some people should know when to retire
I read a blog today about the number of librarians vs. the number of library positions and the fact that is has nothing to do with a segment of the population refusing to retire due to the economy. It’s best point was this: When, when women entered the workforce, they didn’t displace men. The economy expanded.
Unfortunately for some of us it doesn’t matter what the economy is doing we are still in a position where we are dealing with colleagues that are no longer relevant to their position. Working in a library is tricky, there is a fine line between cultivating a collection and hoarding, and in the case of our small collection someone has been hoarding for years. If the item can’t be used because it is some form of ‘technology’ that can’t be used anymore then it is time to get rid of it. I mean things like: filmstrips and floppy disks (the 3 1/2 inch ones and 8 inch ones). More-so, if anyone thinks these things are relevant in anything but an archival library they should also go. If an item is more than say 20 (I really lean toward no more than 15) years old and it is about a specific science oriented topic (like HIV/AIDS, substance abuse, drugs, treatment, or even psychology there is a good chance that information has changed, been updated, or found - in many cases- to be false and these items too should be discarded. If the item has not been checked out once and has been on the shelf 15 years since the libraries opening- discard. If someone doesn’t know how to use the technology in the office that is relevant -they too should probably be discarded. Quote, (okay sort of a paraphrase) “I should be able to not upgrade if I don’t want to. It was easier before and I can’t figure this out.” 1) That will never happen. 2) You’ve had a year. 3) At least admit you have no idea what you’re doing so that someone else (i.e. ME) can just fix it and move on.
Look- I understand that technology is ‘hard’ and ‘scary’ but if you can’t use it or at least try to embrace it then maybe a career in a field that heavily relies on using it isn’t for you. Just a thought.
#3- I have a love/hate relationship with a really very awful book series.
For years now I have been reading the House of Night novels. If you haven’t read them for God’s sake don’t start! They may be the most horribly written books I have ever come across. It is a young adult series about a vampire (or vampyre because the author likes the way it looks) academy in Tulsa. I think it could be read at maybe 5th-6th grade level. The first book has a scene with a blow job in it so still I don’t recommend it for kids. There is a lot of drinking and sex actually for a children’s series so that is disturbing in its own right. The series is written by an English teacher from Oklahoma (though I was done throwing shade at that state didn’t you?) and her daughter. See this is important because the book uses words like ‘gihugic’ so maybe giant + huge? Also soda is ‘brown pop’ but maybe that is an Oklahoma thing, I don’t think it can be a licensing thing because they talk about Count Chocula a lot. It is very good at stereotyping which I feel is also inappropriate for the age group it is aimed at and unfortunate given a high school English teacher writes the series. In the beginning I thought it was funny because there is a smart-gay kid that uses ‘big’ words then has to define them for everyone else; it was sort of like SAT prep but then it just got annoying. Why do all the other kids have to be stupid? Why is the rich uppity one a blonde? Why do they make jokes about being from the ghetto toward the black girl and make her speak in ebonics?
The problem is that I really like the storyline. There is a lot of history and lore not only with vampire culture but the Cherokee culture as well. I find that part and the spells all very intriguing. It is not a hard read and it good for just some mental down time but overall the series is lacking depth and intellect. At this point I have read 10 books (eek) 1 more is out currently and the last in the series comes out in October so I am far too invested to just give up now. I sometimes feel like the daughter wrote these stories when she was in junior high and it took her mother to validate them and give a publisher some reason to actually publish them. That, and they were riding the coattails of Twilight. I just want to know what happens!!
More ideas are on my mind but they will just have to wait until later.
Monday, January 6, 2014
Apparently, I have been gone so long that this blog may have started the paperwork to have me declared legally dead. Also, apparently it has been long enough that it has survived a zombie apocalypse and a robot apocalypse as well. While I never had any intention of allowing my blog to go so long unattended I feel no need to give any excuses. I could tell you about the awful year I had, that I was sick and in bed, that I just didn’t feel up to it but the truth is those are all lies. You see, I had an okay year. I started a new job taking a complete left turn in my career and really starting over from the beginning. It wasn’t even that hard or complicated of a process and to be honest I work less hours and have less stress than I have in 9 years. I became a part of a committed and live-in relationship and while that has probably taken up its fair share of time it is by no means the reason for my lack of writing. While I have taken the opportunity over the last year to relax and enjoy being me I put all blame for my absence on myself.
I did have a rocky start to 2013 but that itself is a story for a different time. It did make me more cautious of my writing or more cognizant rather. I became supremely aware of who read my blog and whether they comment or not and it made me worry about posting things that may offend some of them. I began to realize as 2013 came to and en that that is no way to live or to write. I was reminded of a time in high school when every who was anyone was using a writing site to post deep emotional poetry and short stories that would move generations as really a way of expressing teenage angst. I was accused of taking too much liberty with some fictions and albeit they were fictions it still hurt people in a way I hadn’t anticipated. I remember my argument and maintain it to this day: I was writing fiction. I don’t often think about who may be affected by my writing as it is usually fairytale but a year ago I couldn’t help it. I was the one that was hurt and it took some distance and perspective (several long months worth) to realize that I can’t be expected to write that way.
First and foremost I write for myself. I write to vent and explore, to imagine and create. I write to be a part of the world I see around me. I realize that my reality does not always match up to anyone else’s however, unless noted otherwise, what I write is generally a figment of my imagination. I am often times inspired by my real life events but even when that is the case I try to flip the details and the facts, to make them beyond the scope of the reality so that it can still just be a story.
With that in mind I open 2014 as the year I get back to writing my way. 2014 is the year in which I will turn 30. I also intend to make it the year that I get back to enjoying writing. I may not always write short stories, I may not even write more than a stream of consciousness from time to time but I intend to write. As of this moment I warn you all -- Read at your own peril. I don’t want to read the pity comments and emails about how my words hurt you and you thought you were out of my line of fire. I don’t care. I will withhold no mercy.