Wednesday, September 2, 2009
Before I close the storybook tonight,
Let's paint a picture now of what we read.
All the colors that exist in sight,
Or all the ones that don't exist instead.
Possibility is limitless to you,
Of that I will make sure, don't ever doubt.
Pursuing whatever you may feel is true,
Whatever makes you laugh, or dance about.
So many things I want to paint for you,
We must invent the colors to begin.
The greens, the blues, the red, the yellow hue,
The unique and rosy paleness of your skin.
They don't know the magic that we know.
For I have taught since you first began,
Outside your eyes the choices always grow,
Hold the paintbrush steady in your hand!
A wealth of trees, of sky, of nature green,
Water rushing beyond some twisted scape.
Pages upon pages is the scene,
The storybook where you and I escape.
I'll be your co-artist, and help you trace the lines,
The boundaries through which your days will rush.
Until my own are gone, the times
When my withered hand can't hold the brush.
This story is forever, always you,
It's pages will brittle-crack, but remain there
Until the days when you yourself are old
Your eyes all smiles, your head so white of hair.
You'll pass it on with care to your own child,
Removing the splinters along your way,
And begin to paint again; and all the while,
Knowing that this moment cannot stay.
Together you will carry on our story,
Amazing tales, even after I am gone.
But go back a page, or two or three,
And you will see my character lives on.
gigantic in spirited form,
the soles are worn,
I've walked many roads
kissed many toads
a frog or two,
I'm the things that never existed,
your version of me twisted.
I stand beyond the cliche -
I stand a little taller
A brief break in the monotony
I try to be
What I will be -
Its never easy
to balance on the tops of your feet,
your labels sticking on so well,
as if glued,
slapped on so crude.
I never knew
(you never knew)
(that this was me)
that this was you.
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Marilyn French believed that Women's subordinance began with the first Human Societies. In ancient times, the people attributed life to 'Mother Nature'. They viewed the earth as their Mother, and believed that she gave them not only life, but nourishment as well (in the form of crops, rain, and the like). Early humans existed on what Mother Nature had to offer, and they worshipped her with thanks and appreciation in return.
Well, a time came when Mother Nature seemingly stopped doing her job. Maybe crops withered, or there was a flood, or perhaps a drought. French believed that due to the inconsistency of Mother Nature's 'offerings', that mankind began to take matters into their own hands. Through cultivating the soil (perhaps the earliest act of rape?), learning to tell time, gauge days and predict weather, man began to have a bit of power over Nature. He could control his own destiny and provide nourishment and protection for himself. French believes that slowly, through conquering and learning to manipulate the earth, early man began to have a bit of a 'God Complex', no longer worshipping and revering Mother Nature.
Where do we come in? Well, Mother Nature was seen as a life-giver and a provider of sustenance. Through our bearing of children and the act of breast-feeding and child-rearing, we fall into that same category. French's theory suggests that men of early times came to equate their female partners with Mother Nature, who they found inconsistent and dissapointing. Through these feelings, Women began to be viewed as subordinate.
A woman named Mary Daly had a different theory. She believed that Women's subordinance could be directly related to Religion, or more specifically, the triad: Judaism/Islam/Christianity, with Judaism being the main focus. She stated (in a somewhat blasphemous manner!) that the God of Judeo-Christianity was on the ultimate 'power trip'. As it suggests in the Torah, Koran, and Bible, God often stated how powerful he was, how omnipresent, how he 'knew everything, created everything, and was in charge of everything'. Anyone who reads these sacred texts cannot doubt that the Christian/Islamic/Judaic God was displaying 'power over' humankind.
God himself chose to dwell away from his human subjects, being 'not of this earth' - in essence, the farthest away from humankind as he could possibly be. This suggets that God is the subject and man the 'other'.
But the interesting part is this: Adam was created by God, and Jesus was apparently the son of God. Also the Bible says that man was 'made in God's image'. Because of these things, we naturally equate God with Man. Most even picture God as a man. So if God = Man and Man = God, where does that leave Woman? An afterthought. And as a 'giver of life' and 'nourisher', she is still equated with Mother Nature. God has stated time and again in sacred texts that HE is all-powerful and he is the supreme creator of life. Does this manner of speaking mean to put Women on guard, by saying, 'you might be able to give birth, but I'm still the supreme being'? Daly's theory suggested that the seemingly male, power-loving God of the triad is solely responsible for Women's subordination, by implying that she's irrelevant and has 'false power'.
Both theories are absolutely fascinating. I personally (and this may surprise folks seeing as I'm a Religions Major) find French's theory more plausible. It isnt that I find Daly's implausible, per se, it's just that I think by the time Judaism formed, and then Christianity and Islam, Women's Subordination was already in full-swing. What I do find possible is that both theories could co-exist. Perhaps Women first starting being persecuted due to French's theory, and these attitudes and feelings carried on down the years until ancient Judaism begun, and those views carried on into the Religion, flavored the views on God and were written into the Torah (and eventually, the Bible and Koran)."
Just some thoughts and ideas I had while in my Womens Studies class.
of the heart.
It's the spring of my life, the winter of yours. It isn't for me to decide, it isn't for me to abide the very callousness of your nature, your reverence for the bleak, the dark, the damaged light. The scales tip, we all fall down sometimes. We have our crosses to bear, and those of us who do it trying to creak out a grin don't do this out of weakness. We do it out of strength. It isn't always easy being
cheerful, amazingly upbeat
but 'whatever gets you through the night'
is quite alright,
So long farewell auf weidersehen goodnight it's not alright the way you curse and moan and fight, the way you suck out all the light, the way you never can decipher wrong from right. I take a leave of absence, a hiatus, from your stream of conciousness, so heinous,
so cruel and cold
You think it's being bold.
It's really just casual infrequent
slaughter of a character.
My myth, my legend, I came across a sea to find you, or so you'd like to think, your mind being on the blink, you can't see for your eyes, the danger lying within just out of arms reach you try to grasp, I'm out of reach, because you push with the tips of your fingers, you push as you clench, you push away as you draw in. You draw
circles of omnipresent procrastination
the ever present sheet of paper with lines too wide
the pen too narrow
your heart too soiled and solidified in it's rage
against the dying, dying of the light
to quote again
You never quote
For thoughts that aren't your own
Have no resonance
No voice like your own,
no hands like your own,
no heart quite like your own.
Closing time, farewell goodnight
to all the little things that creak about the night
(it's dark inside your chest,
the beats play out a tune)
Ill cloaks itself in gauzy feathers, black and inky, souless red, the wisps of a deep burgundy rooted self hatred, self loathing, posing as something, a goddess, an angel, a sex filled raging borderline amazing :
A nothing, in case, encased in therapy...
You stare upwards at clouds, drifting away, the sky your shelter, but it gives way. An endless prayer on your knees
The rain falls, in drips, in drops,
down over the tips of the tops of the trees,
And standing is a privilege,
until you fall.
In my surreal weekend I watched people scramble and fight over $2.96 DVDs at Walmart. Later, on our small motel TV, a heavily made up newscaster promoted a parade by telling me that 'tis the season for giving'. I saw no giving. Only women scratching each other over 'Pretty Woman' and 'Lethal Weapon 4'.
If I give you my cynicism, would that be considered a gift?
I find it a impossible that we start our children off with some goofy tradition of Santa Claus - a big fat man who somehow squeezes his ass through your chimney (even if your trailer, apartment or houseboat doesn't have a chimney) and doles out the very present you wanted just for you because he's ho ho ho so happy to do it. On account of the elves and Mrs. Claus and whatnot. Then a few years later, just as we delivered out such dogma, we snatch it away. ha ha. I was the one giving you those presents all along. Thank Daddy for his fine performance as Sir Klaus on account of his beer gut and cheap fabric I got at the after Thanksgiving sale at Walmart.
Santa Claus is fiction. How could we believe otherwise. I mean, c'mon. A fat man in a red velour suit who jiggles like a bowl full of jelly and gives a bunch of brats bikes every year at the same time.
THAT would be impossible.
What IS true, however, is that this guy was born in a stable who later grew up to be mightier than Zeus and was resurrected and will only save you and I if we accept him into his heart, but oh there's a catch! You have to drink wine that's been blessed and wafers that have been blessed and play pretend that you're at a cannibal tea party and drink his blood and promise not to fuck or be gay or ESPECIALLY be gay AND fuck, and you have to say things like, 'praise Jesus' and hold your palms out with your right hand raised whenever you listen to certain music.
You know honestly, I think the REAL miracle of Christmas is how two slaves from Egypt could have such a snow white baby.
An even bigger miracle still is people haven't figured out that Adam and Eve are metaphors for those two big apes dancing around the giant white bar in 2001: A Space Odyssey.
Thank you. I'm here all day.
You talk in a big voice and jut out your chin,
you manly speciman of man,
you goddamn king, you god,
you mother-fucking lifesaver.
Let me worship, let me stand alone and take your insults,
and a humble gesture, a motif to silently compliment
your every spoil of war.
For all the years I spent catering to your wanton sadism, your fleeting darkness, your melancholy eyes, cloaking what I only imagined to be a deeper hurt -
But no. It was a deeper vanity, an obsession with your image, your own beautiful pitiful spoiled boy...
...your inner baby...
You savored the sight of your own fist as it smashed through the air, the moisture glistening in every corner of the room like tears!
Tears you would never shed-
Eyes don't sparkle
when they're blotchy and red
and boys don't cry
not if they're vampires
Give me back
the ends of the earth
You snake charmer,
you half wit
in disguise of genius,
you fall in pieces,
you fall to shame.
(*Disclaimer - no, it's not about Blake. You can breathe again!)
let the wind blow you whichever way it will,
it knows our bodies better than he does.
Bend towards it's breeze, let yourself fall,
embrace the weaker sex, if that's what we are,
for we feel emotion
rather than cold, hard stone.
We stand tall on mountains, overtaking cliffs
We're the ones who nurse you,
play mommy to your Whim,
and child to your Want.
We stand tall and pretend to be small,
so as not to offend -
and you don't notice;
you're pressed for time, pressed for space
pressed for relevance,
your saving grace.
We stand behind shadows, smiles on our lips
We hold the steaming plates,
you chow and masticate and talk yourself to death
with crummy wisdom,
the woman across the table, winning the competition
with a wan smile and nod of the head,
so aloof and calm, you'd think her dead.
We stand on clouds, our brains so far away,
we dream, didn't you know -
our legs and feet have purpose, have time
rhythm, ageless, never failing,
our hair grows longer, our wrinkles endearing
our hips spread across the ages,
we hold out arms, for you to sink into.
We're mommy, we're lover, we're wife,
we're your backbone,
never crooked, never failing,
holding up your necks,
holding up your egos.
this cursed knowledge
will last amongst your daughters, your withered hands will linger
for far longer than you think.
Let the wind take you, bend you, even break you,
we're never as brittle
as they think we are.
We are their hope, their light,
of inexhaustable energy.
slice it leftwise, rightways
Amongst the days, so long and full of acrid breath,
the people shout, they mill about, you walk with
uncertainty, faked carefully without a smile.
The rage boils just below the surface,
the grass grows, an afront to the earth, the nameless face
you walk amongst us, you walk slowly -
so we have to slow down,
to catch up
with you. You talk in a low voice, so quiet even the crickets can't hear
For silence and mystery makes it seem you have something to say
when you do not.
The endless mindless drone of it -
the poor me sad me help me help me
(you want us to hurt you)
A real woman would disgust at the sight
clinging to patriarchy
clinging to the vines of trees you can't identify -
chemically altered, forever bartered
your ass for a smile
your life for a while...
Abuse is key, it defines us
to be in a group. To be selected with a label stuck on -
the glue can't ever rub off;
so you belong, you're singing some song,
so sad you are.
At least you have a claim to fame.
At least you have a name.
Bleakly run –
A cigarette just out of reach,
To start the day amongst the clutter
A single shudder
To bring something back to mind.
Open and shut.
Never were things in such shades of gray
Never were they played out this way
My doe-wide eyes see nothing ventured, nothing gained,
Frame to frame, I cannot stay
Give up the game.
I cannot tell you why
The divide within my shallow chest knows nothing of defeat
It knows nothing of heartbreak,
Calloused hands caressing gentle words you say to lie your way –
Into the fray
I cannot stay. I cannot play this game.
Half empty half full,
Half full of potential,
Half full of the weight of your words.
A cautionary tale,
A tale between two entities, lying and dividing
Pieces of our sordid history,
Watch it fail
Or let it go, to see if it bounces back.
A multitude of sins.
We lie in wait,
In weight so solid, barely breathing, seeing or believing –
We wait to cover up our misgivings.
Shun mine for yours;
a martyr-like sacrifice.
I could be blessed
Should I admit defeat.
I never knew what lay beneath your brows
I never knew the volume of your words,
The way they spoke like curling smoke,
Dancing languidly through the air…
You never dared
Or dreamed or spoke outloud,You crushed it right beneath your foot.
Will it ever become clear? The future so fuzzy, seemingly covered in fur, dander, some swarthy material that cloaks my eyes from seeing anything real. Reality is a beacon, calling to me, promising sanity, but I'm blind. What I want is ambiguous, refusing to adhere to me, refusing my graces. Deplorable. For want of this I would do most anything. I'm drawn in, like a vampire to neck; I want to sink into this, make it my own. I've never felt this way, bottomless, uncertain. I've never been unclaimed. In this world I've always belonged, always had a label. And much to my chagrin I've embraced this role, become the woman I am, the woman so many people wanted me to be. For so long I've been this that now my shell is staid, cold, locked tight against my flesh, flesh now dying to get out. I ache quietly, I am pitiful in a subtle way. I draw myself in deep, tucking my knees to my chest and saying nothing of what I would really like to say, really like to do. Cowardly courtly love leaves much to be desired. I am no beggars wife, no tale from Canterbury. And yet I've been nunnified, or so it seems, brought low in my desires and made to be ashamed.
But I'm not ashamed. For want of this I would do most anything. For want of it I would tell you the things I'd do. Most anything.
You see, anything is possible.
It's so unclear. So blurred, fuzzy, redundant. Opaque, like the blobby tears that still fill your eyes when you wake on sad mornings. The sun in your vision, the glint of moonlight over water. These things are beautiful, but they blind us. The cold fear takes hold of us each, every one, falling out of favor. Addictions so predictable, I give them up, one by one, I give up the things I called my own. The things that owned me.
I want to lock myself tight into this world. I want a purpose, a goal, to be filled with the knowledge that I'm purposeful, that I can be of use to something. Myself, perhaps. A greater good beyond the outside appearance. My hair with glint of red, beguiling green eyes, a friendly smile – all the world's my stage but what will we DO with that stage? What will we say? For want of this I would do…anything.
I don't want to live my life saying 'what might have been if I only I had been'. To be scared, to be hurt, is a fate worse than death. Never again will I walk in the world with head hung low. Bruised, battered; no, this will not occur. For self-worth is easier to come by than we think. I looked in the mirror. Those who falter, those who quake, they are but shadows lying low in a horizon of doubt. I prefer to be a cloud. Seamless and floating, a representation of all things light. To be sure, eventually I would break and crack and pour my opulence down like a spring rain, but even then it would be light. The heavy burden of self-doubt goes away, and it stays away. I move gracefully, cumulus-like and airy. A blinding whirr and heaviness is gone.
Pages upon pages!
I can never say -
Tonight's feature: A magic show. A chrysalis.
- lying in darkness, we're dimly lit fireflies. Our wings our auras, pale color giving away to deepness, feathering in the dark, cool air. Fumbling, finding balance. The tips of these wings defenseless against the thickening tension -
A bird in a cage. Flap, fly. Hysterically by.
I can't just be...
- lying here; with you. My eyes are wide open. Staring at a latitude somewhere past your shoulder. You, above me, enamoured, dedicated. Drunk on some feeling I am not privy to, you smile, wistfully, reminding me of past things I had buried. Deep earth, musk, the cool blackness my friend should I choose to embrace it. A faint sheen of sweat glosses you; sweet. My eyes cannot shift - they're stuck. I stare, I stare, straight ahead, past the point of which I should be focused. Past the point of no return. Fixated, deadened, I stare.
So wide, my eyes, a constant state of learning. I have found myself in this place. I have found myself a fledgling. No amount of knowing will make me any less green.
...I am a gardener, cutting off stalks at the root. A petal, a sweet fragrance, lost in some time and space. Deadened leaves, hardened, pollenated, brought back again like Elijah of the fields, brought back again to fly amongst the nesting.
I'm so green - and I can't stop staring.
A lowly beat to breathe by.
I find it all so distracting. The noise, the clatter, the clunk and circumstance of any given day.
Founded on a whim; this acid trip brain freeze. We met on a winter day; the wind was harsh, it blew hard. Frozen particles of acrid sanctimony filled my lungs. We met head on. Your eyes were dark, wintry.
A sentence spoken, a voice heard. Yours. Mine.
Through my hips I danced a tune I felt. Diligently, reminiscent of days yonder. I broke the box, I shimmied and shook, I poured out my heart with my ever moving legs. The curves ran rampant, your eyes followed.
Through my eyes I wrote a novel, I told the tale. You and
Through my hands I mimicked reality. I pushed and pulled, I clasped my fingers around the concept of your light weightedness. I balled into a fist, I punched, I scratched, I slapped. I pointed out the nonsense, the nonsensical mistake we made.
Through my ears I heard you speak, above a whisper, above a sliver of doubt. My ears betrayed me. I thought I heard –
I thought I heard another thing. A thing to make me smile.
You rarely see things you don't mean.
The night air, so cold, makes whisps of smoke betraying itself for shapes. It lies, it glistens with a sparkle that is false. For beneath the glitter is glue.
I have loved you and your pretense simultaneously. I've loved you both. I've loved you all.
With straw for hair and marbles for eyes, this doll takes form. This doll awakens. This plastic skin becomes porous. She waits in suspended motion.
You asked, can I recreate this body, this night, this incident. Incident, I replied. This is no incident. This was an accident. Accidental particles, floating on a breeze of sorts. Falling together, sticking tightly – dust gathers in groups, little circles, cliques of air. We all fight for breath together, we all brave the cold together. No, not an incident. An accident of metaphysics, you and I.
It's a cacophany, a litany,
things to remember, things to forget.
We transition with ease from person to person,
tree to tree
from you to me -
I find a common denominator
and passing judgement.
Your opinion, so holy, so rolling
cresting, falling, with each rising breath,
we base our lives, a day to day routine -
on telling you what's wrong with me.
Slick back, jet black,
ash and circumstance,
always pulling through, on charm alone
too intimidating, too mundane, too quizical
to offer substance,
but charm alone
One day gone past
you walked upright
your shoots and leaves
brighter than the rest,
I will never stoop
to levels of disgrace
I see with open eyes
my faults, my greats alike,
those categories, traits
to bring us close together
instead of seperating
oil and water.
They will never embarrass me.
They are welcome any time,
and those who find them off-putting
- they are the disgrace.
Some far-off constellation
some concept alien and frigid
that perception is only third the battle
and one day our eyes fail,
where shall you be?
tree to tree
A warming feeling, numbing to the core
The very muscles of our brain.
Ridiculed and sore.
I thought I knew you
but I didn't know your mind
who is before, who behind
You stand agape
Demonstrating your personal resemblance
to the ape.
my consciousness awakening
to a missing;
a leathery, paper thin feeling
the salt and pepper air
the spray, the sea-slow island time
the wind my gravity
I no longer feel sand in my shoes
as I walk - the pressure pull
the tepid sky
I no longer feel secretive, sly
I no longer have a calling-card by which to breathe
I no longer close my eyes
when I lie
the air cryptic and pressing
the looming stresses of our digestive systems
the media-frantic tipsy torvy gangfuck of a
I miss shells, I miss green rolling hills
I miss legalities and honest moralities
I miss finding beauty in a big nose,
sex in a slang
interest in a voice.
I miss unique-ity.
Would I to land
on yours today
I would bend on knee
and kiss your earth
a torrent of tropicality
the kind of nonsense you could appreciate
with a word like zed
you could build empires
empires of laid-back stepped-back
unassuming true representations
competition belongs in a stadium
and love is in our homes
we are all judged equally,
but not at all.
Your speck of earth
I miss the squeak and squawk
of 'fush and chups'
the molly mawk
I miss the kowhai, the koru,
the useless abundance of
I miss a time and place
unspoiled by western practicality
you'll forever belong to me.
like a cracked shell
the yolk split and divided
The small things need a voice,
such a spark
in something small
the higher we set them
the harder they fall.
Lying behind eyes
mistaking want for depth
I don't exist to serve
her voice tepid like lukewarm water
afraid to speak in a stream
instead in a hiss
a broken teapot
a hit or miss
I don't exist for you
I exist for this
for nature kiss
My talents mine
the small things
for me, I desire to be open
I don't need things
to make me be -
I don't need proof
that I can see
that you and me
we are not 'we'
we are not we
I exist for me
for small things everywhere
a quiet triumph
over loud, unsteady beats
small and unnoticeable
against the grain.
Friday, February 13, 2009
"DON'T BUY PEPSI IN THE NEW CAN!
Pepsi has a new 'patriotic' can coming out with pictures of the Empire State Building , and the Pledge of Allegiance on them.
However, Pepsi left out two little words on the pledge, 'Under God.
Pepsi said they didn't want to offend anyone.
In that case, we don't want to offend anyone at the Pepsi corporate office, either! So if we don't buy any Pepsi product, they will not be offended when they don't receive our money that has the words 'In God We Trust' on it.
HOW FAST CAN YOU REPOST THIS
Excuse me while I fucking puke.
Not ONLY has this very same bulletin been posted countless times in the past two years (which means it's probably not true, do us all a favor and go check Snopes.com before being an idiot), BUT...
Since WHEN did PEPSI have anything to do with god? I think it's highly inappropriate to design Pepsi cans with the Pledge of Allegiance on them anyway, unless it's some special commemorative 4th of July can or some shit, and even that's a gray area. But y'know what? Even if this story was true, and PepsiCo felt the need to omit the words 'under god' so as not to offend the various other people in the country who DON'T pray to a bearded fucking Jesus, so what? It's their company and I'm reckoning they are smart enough and have enough PR people to realize that offended the population with religious propaganda while they're trying to drink a soda will effect sales.
PEOPLE. Please. I am begging you. THINK before you post this shit.I know it's just MySpace and it doesn't matter and blah blah blah but be honest with yourself. You aren't going to stop drinking Pepsi. Nobody is going to boycott Pepsi anymore than they would boycott Doritos, Kraft Macaroni and Cheese or Walmart. Why? Because those things are as American as obesity, underage pregnancy and missles.
I love how some folks will jump on a bandwagon about a can of goddamn Pepsi because it doesn't honor their idea of religious expression, and yet they'll still continue to shop at Wally World and handing their dough over to a billionare family that exploits third world workers for 18 cents a day. But wait a minute - those third world workers are communists - they deserve it! And the Indian people who are exploited by Walmart? Well, they're the next best thing to an Arab, right? Right? Obviously our can of aluminium carbonated goodness is a more important issue than the human rights of other people.
Why, oh why, I ask anyone, is God still an issue in this country? If you believe in God, Jesus, whatever, fine. That is your right. And there are millions of churches all over the damn country for you to practice that religion. You wouldn't tolerate 'under Allah' being plastered all over your Pepsi can, would you? Damn right, you wouldn't. I find it utterly laugh-inducing that there are still people who actually push this shit. They're still bitching about evolution, they don't want their children taking Greek Mythology classes or learning about Muslims. They want the words 'under God' on their Pepsi cans and 'I love Jesus' on the bombs we drop on Afghanistan. They want Jesus shaped fritos to dip in their holy guacamole.
In the meantime, I'm gonna worship the sun. And I'm gonna keep enjoying my Godless Pepsi.
'Whenever you feel like criticizing anyone', he told me, 'just remember not everyone has had the same advantages you've had'.
A similar sentiment, arriving by text message, in this new age of gadgetry and phone messaging, reaches me across the wires. It reminds me of truths we should all be accountable for this season, or any season, and also raises hard questions.
It can be hard, sometimes, to not look at others with an opinionated eye. We wonder could they be doing this or that better; could they be a better parent, a better employee, a better friend, could they be better dressed or less negative or more thin, could their house be cleaner or could they be more punctual. Do they deserve all the things they have? Do they appreciate them? Do we deserve them more?
The answer is never easy. And it never satisfies. Therefore the only realistic way to handle such a quandary is to never ask yourself these questions. All we can do is plug forward of our own accord, making our way as we go along. There are reasons for pride and envy being considered mortal sins.
This friend of mine tells me to be patient, to be kind, and never to forget that helping people less fortunate than myself is the best gift I can give - not just to them, but to me. He tells me this to keep me motivated, when he sees me falter. See, he's looking from an indeterminable position. Above or below, we just can't tell. He is my self-appointed compass, and he tells me that I'm too hard lately, I need to be softer.
I never judge, I never hold in contempt. And I always strive to do what I can for anybody who needs it. I come from a place of love, however cold it might be. I never forget who has helped me, what I've taken, borrowed, had to replace or repair. And that place in my soul is where I find my generosity.
But there are moments in generosity when too much can be given. You must hold yourself first, put yourself foremost. Giving until you have nothing left accomplishes little good. Nobody appreciates a martyr except the martyr. Allowing yourself to be taken advantage of has no real merit. Sure, you're selfless, but you're willingly latching onto parasites, trying to turn them into flowers.
I was told once, in my less self sufficient years, 'I'm going to help you by not helping you. You must learn to stand on your own two feet'.
Left to drown? It seemed that way at the time. It was the best lesson ever offered to me. How to feel sorry for ones self for exactly 2.5 seconds before realizing something better be done before I drown for real. That nobody will be my life jacket this time but me. Sink or swim. Prove your worth.
Those of us who have lived lives of privilage don't understand how hard it is to pull yourself up by your bootstraps. How simple tasks such as paying bills, keeping a job and feeding yourself a decent meal every day can seem too much to handle. We jibe at them from behind our coffees and our manicures and our iPhones and wonder with disgust how they got to be so low. How they have no pride, no ethic, no personal accountability.
And yet it's always those same people who can't manage to keep a roof over their head, who always seem to outpour creativity and change, who seem to alter people's lives with a smile or a profound statement. It almost doesn't seem fair. We want to nurture these people, take their burden, so that they may continue to grace us with their charm.
After all, that's the one thing us materialistic lot can't buy. We can buy everything else.
It's hard to decide when helping someone is for their benefit, or for yours, so you can feel better about yourself. Call yourself a good friend. Would it help them more to walk away? Or is that just a selfish person's way of justifying? I've been on both sides of the fence, giver and receiver, and the answer is still no clearer to me now.
I know for sure that there are no real answers for why people do things in stupidity. Why we lose jobs, let go of people who love us, make decisions that will ruin our health or perhaps even kill us. Why we neglect those who love us, those who depend on us, like our animals or even our children. Why we stumble through life as if these thousands of years of evolution have taught us nothing.
Which they haven't.
All I can do is try not to judge, and keep my own head above water. That is all any of us can do.
For about an hour. Then the prenatal vitamins kicked in and all my food was digested, and the here arrives the onslaught of evil, malicious nausea and suicide-inducing heartburn. The quenchless thirst. Next my back started to hurt, my bladder filled again, and I was left with a nagging taste in my mouth and no more peppermint tic tacs to chew on.
Despite my best efforts to control the mania that was taking over my brain, I walked over to the mirror and to my shock and awe, discovered that I had turned into none other than Violet Beauregard:
I am the biggest, most swollen pregnant woman this side of earth. My belly is the size of a small SUV. The child inside, only 16 weeks old, must be the jolly green giant. I am a vision of swelled purple heinousness and I need to be sent to the juicing room before I erupt in spontaneous tears again.
I need a tiny village of oompa loompas to cart my pregnant ass around, fetch me sprite and make sure my feet are covered when I'm lying on the couch, moaning and whining between barfs.
Seriously, nobody warns you about real morning sickness. Sure, they tell you you'll feel queasy, might barf, and you should keep saltines by your bed (which by the way, didn't do anything but fill my stomach with stale crackers and more bile). They don't tell you about the times when you'll projectile vomit without warning. The other day, standing in the backyard in my robe and fuzzy slippers, with the neighbor in full view, I proceeded to barf up two pop tarts and a tall glass of juicy juice while attempting to hold the phone far enough away so that my poor Grandmother wouldn't hear the retching. I'm so talented I even avoided hitting Maple, who was standing right under my feet, as usual.
I'm walking around with a human being playing water polo in my grapefruit sized uterus. This human being now has fingers and toes and has begun to urinate. And so have I. Every fifteen minutes or so. BFlo lectures that I use too much toilet paper. And wonders why I so rudely tell him to go fuck himself.
After all, men think giving birth is closely the equivalent to moving a couch into a new house. You push for a minute, wiggle it around, and eventually it pops through. Nevermind that I need all that toilet paper; toilet paper has become a goddamn luxury. Firstly, I need it to wipe after urinating. For every time I stand up after urinating, I must sit down and urinate again. Secondly, I must have it for wiping my mouth after barfing repeatedly. Thirdly, I need it to blow my nose and wipe away nosebleeds, since pregnancy increases blood flow and mucus flow and turns the mommy into a giant nostril. Fourthly, I need it to wipe my bloodshot eyes after the latest crying jag, usually brought on by especially heart-warming episodes of 90s sitcoms, publix commercials, or accidentally stepping on Gatsby's tail.
Oh, the joys of pregnancy. I'm not sure which part I like the best; there's so many juicy tidbits to choose from. There's watching your hips spread wider than Jenna Jameson's legs...there's stocking up on nothing but bags and bags of Doritos and Pizza Rolls because that's all you want to eat, then the very next day discovering that Doritos and Pizza Rolls make you puke...there's the prenatal horsepills, completely mandatory that I take, that give me bacon-burps...the mere act of looking at a toilet making me gag...wanting to beat everyone to death at taco bell when they put ground beef all up in the meatless chalupa I ordered...looking at the father of the baby, and thinking what an adorable head he has, but if only it were a little bit smaller, in case the baby gets it...fears of the fetus pushing its way out of your body through your belly button like in Alien...having to sleep with a body pillow wedged in between your legs so that your stomach doesn't hang uncomfortably in the balance...having your nice, average-sized, perfect tits suddenly turn into giant twin canteloupes that could launch a full scale attack on China...
At least I'm not having twins!
(originally posted on MySpace and edited for blogger)
When I think back to my middle school and even high school days, one of the things I remember most was the gaggle of girlfriends I always had surrounding me. Had you asked my 13 year old self who my best friend was, you would've gotten a list of names big enough to fill a garbage bag. My yearbooks prove it: I had so many girlfriends I'm surprised I could fit all their signatures in the pages. And we were close - we knew all each others' secrets, trusted one another to play matchmaker, attended each others' family funerals, went on vacations with each other and shared our most prized possessions without abandon. If you attacked one friend, you attacked them all. Never was there more loyalty or trust in my friendships than when I was a teenager.
Then came adulthood. The transition was so slow, I barely noticed it, but looking back, there was definitely a point when my friendships became less, shall we say crucial, and more of a haphazard, casual kind of thing. I still had all the same friends, and we still shared secrets and clothes, but it was like we collectively became more guarded. Our secret club of girls became an open club of women, who made no bones about the fact that we cared more about boys and adult aspirations than we did each other. After all, that was the natural order of things.
Soon the every weekend slumber party became a once a month girls night. At that once a month gathering, the focus had changed from just 'catching up'. It was more about 'keeping up'. Who has the better job? The better hairstyle? Who is dating the cutest guy? Has the nicest car/house/pet? Who lost 10 pounds?
It's no surprise that women, upon reaching adulthood, begin to compete with even the women they love the most. Society grooms us from an early age to maintain a 'survival of the fittest' mantra. It's hidden in the pages of magazines, the internet, even television shows. Despite all of the efforts of feminists and free thinkers in past decades, it is still subliminally ingrained into us that you're only as successful as the man on your arm, the the amount of money you make, the way you fit in that dress. And one thing society loves more than anything is to take a seemingly successful woman and tear her down in the blink of an eye (just look at Britney Spears - five years ago she was the epitome of success, and now we all love to make fun of her. Why? Because she had the audacity to be a human being with human problems).
I once had a close friend with whom my entire friendship was based on competition. Neither of us realized it at first, but after a year or so, it was pretty obvious that we were vying against each other for everything. Attention. Popularity. Notoriety. If I lost 5 pounds, she lost 10. If she cooked a great meal, I'd develop a new recipe. We fought over everything, from who discovered a band first to who was on the best diet.
We never openly acknowledged this competition, and so much of the time it was a subconscious thing, that neither of us ever really addressed it. For a while it seemed healthy to me, even. Since we were seeing ourselves through each others' eyes, it made me strive to be better in everything I did. Or so I thought. All I was really striving to do, in reality, was be petty and shallow. I never changed anything about myself that actually mattered.
I finally reached the realization that our friendship was detrimental when I caught myself in a yelling match with her over who had come up with a certain phrase. Yeah, that's right. We argued over the ownership of a saying.
And yet, despite realizing this, I still argued with her.
It's no wonder, what with the media and our own network of support teaching us to compete for spoils, that we all fall victim to competitiveness within our friendships. Many of us go through life not even noticing the damage we are doing to ourselves and those who we love.
The question is, why do we do it? Even those of us who are married/happily in relationships, with successful jobs, beautiful kids, happy home lives - those of us with nothing to prove - even we fall victim to the constant comparisons and bragging that comes with being friends with other women.
Do we do it to be relevant? Are we so afraid that, with every new thing, new trend, new face that is plastered before our eyes every day, we'll become more and more invisible? Are we competing for relevance in a world that pushes only a select few women to the top and the rest to the bottom?
Does it have to do with men? Perhaps we, by instinct, feel the need to battle each other out for the choicest, primest male for our den. I've certainly been stabbed in the back enough times by girlfriends where guys were concerned, as have we all. Women competing over men is certainly nothing new; it's as old as dirt. And the competition over men is when women truly bring out the evil they harbor inside themselves. Just watch an episode or two of Judge Judy to see for yourself. I've had women friends deliberately sabotage my relationships, try to hit on/sleep with/flirt with my boyfriends, even set me up with people they knew weren't right for me out of spite. And in my younger and more catty days, I was guilty of a few crimes involving friends and boyfriends myself.
Maybe the whole 'man' excuse is just the tip of the surface. Perhaps it's just that, in a society where women have always been deemed 'slightly inferior', where we get paid less on average, have less advantages at school and work, and are generally treated as second rate citizens, women feel they have to constantly keep that 'edge' in order to propel themselves forward. After all, befriending nothing but underdogs will only result in keeping you an underdog. Right? It's a sad fact, but society does encourage women to compete against each other much more so than they do men. When there are only so many opportunities out there, we have no choice but to fight each other to be able to get ahead.
I can't explain the mentality behind it, or why any of us do it. I do have the advantage of having realized the negative behavior and have done all that I can in my life to change it. Competing with girlfriends does nothing but deflate your self-esteem, occupy time which could be better spent on more productive things, and damage friendships. Once I reached these realizations, I found that I changed infinitely for the better. In some cases, it even meant letting certain friendships fall by the wayside, for the greater good of both of us. It's a sad fact, but sometimes it's necessary. We as women should hold each other up, encourage each other, and be supportive in all our endeavors! The old adage definitely tells true: 'United we stand, divided we fall'. After all, you can compete for everything, but neither of you will ever win until you love yourself more than you love to fight.
(originally published on BeyondJane.com and edited for blogger)
It seems to be a week for religion. Ryan and I have been discussing some schmuck with religious propaganda on YouTube, then of course there was the Reverend Joe Lowery's eloquent and hilarious benediction at the inauguration recently, and now this on Facebook.
It seems a little silly to me that there would be a club for such a thing. Facebook, as a general rule, is pretty stupid (not as stupid as MySpace, but y'know). We can send each other 80s 'memorabilia', 'southern stuff', 'poke' each other and update our status every five minutes (don't get me wrong, I love me some Facebook, but c'mon. It's brain fluff!). So I guess it's no surprise that we can now accumulate with other Christians in an attempt to somehow petition the entire Facebook community into claiming their Christianity as well.
I don't know, I figure, if you're really 'on fire for Jesus' you'd have better, more Christian things to do than start clubs about it on Facebook. Like, maybe go help the poor, or go vaccum the rugs at Church or something.
I recently came to the realization that I'm going to have to make the whole, 'I'm not baptizing my baby' argument to various members of mine and BFlo's family in a few months. To me, religion is a choice, and I will not sway my child in any direction, period. When they are old enough to choose a belief system, whether they are 5 years old or 15, whether they choose Baptist or Muslim or Athiest, I will support it. But I do not believe in pre-ordaining a child's religion. Nor do I believe in sprinkling water on their head to 'mark' them with Jesus. I find it even more ridiculous that some people actually believe that if I don't do this, my child will go to hell. My little bitty, size of a grapefruit kicking baby is gonna go to hell if I don't have them baptized in the name of some holy ghost before they turn 6 months old.
It could be because I studied religion for three years at a very progressive college in a very cynical, forward-thinking country, or it could just be that I'm a non-believin' bitch, but...doesn't it seem that Christianity is becoming increasingly less relevant? When I hear things like, 'God Bless You', or 'Thank the Good Lord', it seems more like an effort at good manners, or being politically correct and polite than it does any real belief. When I hear evangelicals on TV or in person, spouting their hate-filled, close minded dogma, it's hard not to laugh. I want to say, 'Where have you been for the past 15-20 years? Do you really think you're relevant? Do you really think this fire and brimstone god and devil you want to scream about is relevant?'
Do these people really believe, even after all this time, that gay people are going to burn in hell? That abortion doctors deserve to be shot? That having sex before you're married is a quick ticket to eternal damnation? That if I don't accept a historical figure who I never met as my lord and personal savior, based on somebody else's suggestion, that I can't have 'eternal life'? Do people actually STILL believe this shit?
Do people actually still listen to top 40 Christian fluff music and hold their hands out to the heavens, palms and fingers stretched, waiting for the almighty to tickle their knuckles?
Fuckin A, people. Wake up. There's a whole world around you, a life you aren't living. If you really want to live in Jesus' example, read his words and go out and DO, instead of saying and yelling and crying and threatening. The thing that really disturbs me is that a lot of prehistoric Christians seem to think that 'charity' is going to the Bahamas as a missionary for two years. As if forcing your religion on people who never asked you for your opinion is somehow 'doing a good deed'.
The one thing that disheartened me with Christianity happened back when I was a teenager. When someone mentioned that non-Christians will burn in hell. I asked, 'What about people who never know who Jesus is, who are born in remote parts of the world and never have a chance to become a Christian?' 'That's what missionaries are for' was the answer I received. 'But what if they never know a missionary?' 'Then, unfortunately, they go to hell'. End of the line for ol' Teeray. That was it, then and there. Because it seemed like bullshit to me.
This quote was in this week's Human Evolution:
'We are all atheists about most of the gods that humanity has ever
believed in. Some of us just go one god further.' -Richard Dawkins
I'm not an athiest, per se, not yet anyway. I've dabbled with numerous belief systems. Being a religion major did not help me decide in any way, in fact, it only confused me further. I love the idea of Baha'ism so much, and yet cannot really bring myself to believe it, for so much of it's dogma is similar to Chrsitianity. I've been a Buddhist, and quickly shunned it for how trendy and un-similiar it had become to traditional Buddhism. Most recently, I've claimed Paganism as my religion of choice. But in reality, I'm an agnostic because I just don't know. I don't know what's the reality. Do I feel that when I die I'll go anywhere but a grave? Not really. Do I feel God? Not really. Do I feel energy and spirit and forces beyond my own experience? Yes. And that last one is the only reason I'm not yet an athiest.
I do find it ironic that so many Christians are so intolerant of other religions, when in fact, the majority of the 'Christian Fable' is stolen from other religions, namely Paganism, Greek Mythology and Egyptian Mythology (the most 'evil' of all, damn pagans!). I think that this non-tolerant attitude was formed at one time specifically for that reason. They didn't want the followers getting educated about the others, because then they'd realize how much of their faith had been stolen or 'borrowed'. If Jesus really was the Messiah, then somebody did him a huge disservice when they based his entire following on the pagan sun rituals.
Christianity has no credibility. ZERO credibility. And yet the majority of the Western World clings to this dogma, and for what reason? I have no freakin' idea, other than the fact that it acts as a cloak for people to keep performing their prejudices and hatreds without consequence. 'I'm not a homophobe, I'm just following Jesus' word!'
I don't recall a Bible verse that stated, 'Fags are gonna burn in hell, so you should picket at their funerals'.
But I dunno, I could have read it wrong (twice).
I've ventured off into an insane rant, so I'll leave you with my favorite part of the movie Zeitgeist (thanks, Wofford), for those of you who've been under a rock and might not have seen it (take the time to watch it if you can, it's really enlightening and will piss you off):
Part One is about Religion. The other two parts deal with politics and the federal reserve. It's worth watching, too, if you have two hours!
By the way, I don't just feel this way about Christianity! I feel this way about any religion that is intolerant, makes no sense, and primarily keeps it's 'flock' in line using scare tactics and dogma that ceased to be logical back when we were still eating sand and wearing sandals.
Peace Out, fellow sinners.
So the girls come across this one shirt that's covered in gold and silver stripes and has a lightning bolt design on it.
Teenybopper One rolls her eyes. 'God, that is like, so pathetic. Lady Ga Ga just wore that exact same outfit like, two days ago on MTV!'
Teenybopper Two. 'I know. Half the clothes in this store look like they came out of her closet. People are so unoriginal these days, they can't think of anything by themselves!'
Then of course, both girls buy several of the items they were just dissing as unoriginal.
For those of you who don't know who the infamous Lady Ga Ga is, she's this r&b/techno/pop singer who was unknown all of 30 seconds ago and now has blown up for a crappy hit called "Let's Dance", that trust me folks, is nothing to write home about. She has a decent singing voice, but she banks all her fame on the clothes she wears and her ridiculous blond heavy-banged wig.
Most importantly, she presents this image to her fans of being this totally original envelope pushing diva who dresses, sings and acts like nobody else. It's true that she looks different from any other singer of THIS ERA, but she is about as original as a sheep wearing apple bottom jeans. Who does she steal all her 'original style' from? DAVID BOWIE!
See for yourself:
I don't have any real problem with artists drawing from other sources - music is timeless and belongs to everyone. And her music doesn't particularly sound like Bowie's anyway. Her look, however, is a direct ripoff of his 'Ziggy Stardust' period. And it irks me that little 16 year olds that were born in the frickin' 90s and probably don't even know who David Bowie IS are saying that our store is stealing from Lady Ga Ga's style to make a buck. Correction, nitwits: we are stealing from the 70s and the 80s to make money off emokids like you who want to look as cool as your GRANDMOTHER did back then!
(This is not targeted to actual 15, 16 or 17 year olds who have in fact heard of David Bowie and do in fact like music that is well, good. I know you guys exist)
How depressing. I am officially old.
(this was originally posted on MySpace, and edited for Blogger)
But if you watch/read the news at all, and haven't been under a rock for the past several days, you'd know that Chris Brown got arrested right before the Grammys for allegedly beating the shit out of Rihanna, biting her, assaulting her with a 'deadly weapon', etc. (PS - for those of you as retarded to the R&B world as me, the duo are 19 and 20 years old and have been dating for like a year. They're like Barbie and Ken for the pop world). I am assuming all of these allegations are at least partly true, since it's been in the news now for a week and more details seem to emerge every day. Nobody has come out and denied the accusations, so I'm led to believe that he did indeed abuse her in some form or fashion.
There have even been reports that it isn't the first time this kid has beaten up his girlfriend.
What disturbed me the most at first was how a 19 year old millionaire (the idiot from the Doublemint commercials, no less) would have any cause/reason/desire to beat the crap out of his girlfriend, IN PUBLIC, hours before going to the Grammys to perform? What kind of real problems can a 19 year old have? And one that is so rich he'll probably never have to work again (which is lucky, because he probably WON'T, at least for a while)...
It was pointed out to me by a friend that money doesn't buy happiness and success doesn't necessarily constitute good behavior, and that's true. I still can't help but wonder though - what could he possibly have reason to be so angry about?
Then I hear the rumors that are swirling around on some of the less-than-savory gossip sites. The most disgusting one is that Rihanna had an affair with Jay-Z (husband of uber diva Beyonce), contracted Herpes, and then gave it to Chris Brown. He found out the night of the Grammys and was so incensed that he beat the shit out of her.
MTV has even gone so far as to publish posts from their comments section from various teenagers (a shocking many of them are teenage girls), giving their two cents on the situation. If you can muddle through all the misspellings and teXtsp3aK, you'll see that most, especially the girls, blame Rihanna. 'She deserved it - he's a nice guy who would never hurt anybody, and if she gave him herpes, she deserves to get punished', seems to be the general consensus. Nevermind that it's an unfounded rumor.
It amazes me how, in this day and age, we still demonize women and justify men's ill behavior. Look at this, folks. He beat the crap out of his girlfriend, bit her, left her stranded on the side of the road bleeding and needing assistance! And all we can do is speculate on what she did to 'deserve' it.
How, after all this time, can we still feed the fires of ignorance? She did nothing to deserve such treatment. How can we even speculate that she did? Let's say for a minute that the retarded rumors are true, that Rihanna fucked Jay-Z and got the herps, and passed it onto Doublemint brat Chris Brown. So he got Herpes. Take a dose of Valtrex, you can afford it. Since when is that cause enough to beat the living shit out of somebody, to the point of getting charged with a felony?
More emerging details inform us that Chris Brown himself is from an abusive household. I hardly think this is anything he can hide behind, considering he gave an interview a little over a year ago, claiming to be furious at the abuse he witnessed his own Mother suffer. If he had the insight to think back on what he saw and felt back then, you'd think he'd have the same insight to not beat his girlfriend with his fists, right? I am a firm believer that past experiences can shape who you are today, and it's true that children with traumatic childhoods can often grow up to be sociopaths and/or deviants in some way - SOME of the time. Not ALL of the time. Not to mention the fact that Chris Brown is well, famous - he's a teenage pop star and a role model and should be held to a higher standard than most average, run of the mill citizens. You can't hide behind your childhood, dude. You made your bed, now you have to wallow in it.
I'm surprised - with as much as you see Rihanna on TV and in magazines, etc, she's been gearing up for some time now to be the next, well, Beyonce. She's everybody's little darling, right? As far as I could tell, as of last week she was about 10 times more popular and successful than Chris Brown, even. And yet, the moment something bad happens to her, the media all rush to figure out what SHE did wrong, choosing to give her fist-happy, less-talented twit of a boyfriend the benefit of the doubt instead.
Like I said, what.the.fuck.
Not to mention T.I., the ATL rapper who is going to jail in like five minutes for felonies of his own, giving interviews talking about how Chris Brown is 'a cool guy and only human'. I bet Rihanna regrets recording that big hit 'Live Your Life' with him now and making him all that money.
Forget therapy. I think Chris Brown needs a bitch slap, stat.
(this article was originally posted on MySpace and edited for blogger)
To my friends I'm known as Teeray, and you've stumbled upon my blog.
Originally this started out as my simple musings on a site some of you may've heard of called MySpace. After a couple of suggestions I decided to make the blog a little more public. I have a lot to say, and oftentimes on MySpace it seems like I'm just talking to myself.
My blog will deal with some everyday things regarding my life, friends, family etc, which I truly hope you won't find inherently boring. Mainly though, the blog will focus on issues and topics that are important to me, such as political issues, women's rights, children's and animal rights, books, films, and music, as well as the occasional hilarious anecdote. I feel it necessary to warn you that I am also no stranger to ranting like a crazy person. I welcome comments, suggestions, and writings and rants of your own in my comments. I may even, from time to time, welcome friends and acquaintances to post a blog or two with me to share their own views. I love a good debate!
A little about me:
I'm 27 years old and live in Georgia. I'm married and expecting my first child. As of starting this blog, I am 4 months pregnant and just getting over the morning-noon-and-night-barfs. I am a freelance writer and genealogist who also works a crappy job in retail to help pay the bills. In the past I've been a legal secretary, personal assistant, office manager and serial complainer. I have a degree in Religious Studies with a minor in English, which I obtained while I lived in New Zealand (from 2002 to 2005).
The rest you shall find out as we go along!
I've picked and chosen the choicest blogs from my past writings to begin with - these were originally 'published' before this date, so if you're one of my old MySpace buddies, you may recognize some of them. I hope you will continue to comment and speak your piece as you did before. I love all your comments and I love all of you! Please stumble and buzz me and give me some love, folks!