Monthly Archives: August 2012

Flashback Friday: Haircuts

He’ll sit for them now–but we are only 2 years removed from the nightmare that was getting a professional haircut.  Here’s a little reminder of what it was like to visit, as Ben calls it, “the haircut house”

Aug 6, 2010

So, my boy inherited a thick, beautiful head of hair. Thick like mine is (when it’s short), blonde (like mine was in my youth–ah sweet youth!) and coarse. (I don’t know who the hell gave him that one–both mr. mommy and I have soft fine hair, as do his grandmothers. I swear–his hair feels asian!) He also inherited my cowlick(s) which can be quite comedic as his hair gets longer. Lately, it was starting to get “moppy”, and ever efficient mommy that I am, I declared it was time for a haircut.

Moppy

He’s had 4 so far. Or maybe 5. Let’s just say it ain’t a regular thing. First–his hair doesn’t grow that fast, and second, like most toddlers, he hates having his haircut. Hates. I’m using the word hate here to describe a haircut. Hate.

I try to take him to my hairdresser, who will cut his hair for a reasonable fee. And while he gets a fabulous haircut–it is physically and mentally exhausting for all of us when we are done. She has a specific haircutting area–he never wants to stay in it. I never bring the right toy. He won’t sit in a barber’s chair for nothing. He WILL NOT wear that noisy cape. And he doesn’t, not anyone, no way, forget it lady and your sharp scissors, want ANYONE touching his HAIR.

None of this surprises me. He rarely lets me comb it either (thus the comedic cowlicks). I’m not even convinced he likes me washing it. (but he tolerates it because he LOVES the rinsing part) He doesn’t like us to dry his hair with a towel. He used to like the blowdryer, but that lasted all of a week. When it comes to this boys hair–HANDS OFF!

So, since the three times we’ve had Tonia cut his hair were so exhausting, I tried one of those “kid” places. The one I tried a while back sported a particular floating object–yellow in color. It was the only time Ben sat in a chair–and got the crappiest haircut I’ve ever seen. Nothing to thin out the thickness, or address the cowlicks. I had to spend more time on his hair after that cut than any other he’s had.

So my thought this last week was this–he sat in the chair at the crappy haircut place…maybe he will again at a different haircut place. Maybe the stimuli in these places will be enough to engage him briefly enough to let a professional get in there and cut.

So I packed snacks and his favorite DVD into my purse and we headed off to Woodland hills to a “kid friendly” and even “Autism friendly” salon.

WE get there and the place is LOUD. Benji is interested in the toys, not the chair. Strike one. The DVD players advertised online are not working and may have never worked. So the DVD I spent 15 minutes looking for that morning is useless. He is more interested in the train table. OK, she says, I’ll cut while he plays. And I think–yeah! That’s how we have to do it. I try to keep him in one place and she gets in there, cutting here, snipping there, thinning, thinning. And I think, this is going to work. IT really is. It’s going to work.

“All done hands”

This was my son’s way of saying, quit it lady! Oh dear. Only half of his head is cut at this point, so it’s not like I can say, oh, just trim a little bit more and we’re good to go. No. We’re committed to a cut now, and it has to continue.

So now begins the chase. He wants to play on the airhockey(!) table. I corral him back to the haircut area. A few more snips. More running away, more herding, more snips. Now, I called this place because they advertised an autism friendly haircut–meaning it would not be rushed. Guess what. Her next appt. showed up and here we were, trying to finish this cut because the other mom had a snooty look on her face.

Then came the clippers.

Yeah–we’d had that discussion. I told her he doesn’t like them. But to finish his cut (yes–we had gotten to that point, phew!) she had to either take clippers to the side, or snip with the sharp scissors, which required stillness. So I grab him, put him on my lap, hold his arms down and she gets one side done. With the clippers. The other side was well nigh impossible. So I told her to leave it with a few pieces I knew I could trim at home once he calmed down, paid the lady and high tailed it out of there. Once we were in the car, we were both able to take a breath and enjoy a moment of silence. That’s before Ben began his mantra of “go through tunnel”–which is kind-of this phrase which could mean:

a) literally drive me through a tunnel
b) I want to go
c) I’m hungry
d) you’re the worst mommy in the world, and I curse the day you ever brought me to this wretched salon with all its stimuli and smells and you let that lady touch my hair and to top it off you wouldn’t even let me play airhockey! I’m calling child protective services as soon as we get home!

D is variable, by the way, usually in reference to whatever messed-up activity I just had him participate in.

So after we get home, alcohol is consumed and naps are handed out, I google “haircutting + toddlers+autism” Even without the “autism” search, the answer is a resounding “DO IT YOURSELF, DUMBASS!” which is what my gut told me about a year ago. I kinda knew with that last visit to Tonia that I should just learn to cut it myself and be done with this stress! But, as stated in previous posts, I don’t always listen to my gut. I kept getting convinced that he needed a pro to cut his hair. And that was because I wanted it short. I mean short short. Practically high and tight. And he is cute as hell with short hair. But you know what, he’s also cute as hell with the mop–a little cuter, maybe. And with a pair of scissors and a DAY (or 3)to cut his hair, I can probably keep it at a moppy exisitence until he is old enough to a) sit still and b) not scream in bloody terror at anyone wielding scissors. Luckily though, this week’s cut is pretty short. So I’ve got a good 6 months before I have to even make a snip…

His most recent cut 2012. Watch out GQ!

Categories: Autism, parenting, Sensory issues | 5 Comments

Ode to Ponce de Leon–or Frank Poncherello

You guys–I may have figured it out.

Here I am, almost 42, entering peri-menopause and lamenting over the fact that I did not misspend enough of my youth.  I apply a nightly regimen of creams and lotions in order to hold back the creeping lines, and all in the name of youth.  That thing we were too cocky to hold on to when we had it, and now scramble for like free TV’s on black Friday.

But I’ve discovered the secret.  It was right in front of me ALL ALONG.

For months now, years really, I’ve been carefully gathering data and only the finest anecdotal evidence, in a triple blind study.  Disguising myself as a horribly pragmatic adult with seemingly mature decisions to make daily, and even going as far as producing offspring to further solidify my claims as a boring adult, I’ve been able to observe in all but pure invisibility, the actions and words of the seemingly young.  The Uber-hip yoga-moms with their large sport utility vehicles and non-GMO orange slices for soccer practice.  The virulent breastfeeders and their crunchy manifestos.  The sensitive fathers teaching their sons to pour tea before participating in group sob-and-drum circle.  I’ve watched them, I’ve listened, I’ve eaten their tofu and spirulina.  I have gazed upon their seeming agelessness in the face of crows feet, paunches and age-specific multivitamins and I’ve distilled their secret to one simple philosophy.

In order to be young, you must ACT young.

Now, I don’t mean the carefree joie-de-vivre of embracing life to its fullest–to experience the things you were never quite brave enough to do in your youth, to live so authentically that no one, not even the Dalai Lama, could doubt your sincerity.  No–that is far too complicated, and we all know that no one can actually DO that.  Why, it would mean telling the truth, and owning to your weaknesses and taking responsibility for you own thoughts and actions.  NO NO NO!  It’s much simpler!

You have to harken back to the days of high school, and dare I say it, middle or jr high.  When I say you must act young, I mean that you must adopt a lifestyle that is selfish, egocentric and maniacally dramatic–and the fountain of youth is yours for the taking!

And lucky for you I’ve got a guide here on how to achieve that level of adolescent immaturity!  This secret was entrusted to me by a team of German scientists, who have been studying Americans now for 20 years in order to bottle and contain this sweet youthful nectar.  They wanted to make sure the secret was seen by as many people possible, and so chose me as their viral ambassador.  Trust me–these five little rules will change your world.

 

1. Be confident.  Even if you are completely ignorant of a topic or situation, you have to BELIEVE that whatever you have to say on the topic is completely relevant and needs to be heard by everyone around you.  Do not worry about silly things like well-documented facts or scientific studies.  What is important is the contents of your mind and the volume at which you speak them.  If you are online, make sure you post your opinion multiple times in different places, even using ALL CAPS if no one will take you seriously.  Remember that whatever you think about the topic is the most important argument that has ever been made.  Do not allow yourself to be ignored.

2.  Do not, under any circumstances, use manners or polite conversation.  This goes along with #1.  If people cannot accept how you speak or what you say, then they are old and stupid, and it is your duty to name-call and curse at them, insulting their age, heritage and fashion sense.  People who cannot accept the language of the young are obviously 2 steps from the grave, and their opinions shouldn’t really matter.  Who cares about civil discourse or letting others voice their opinions?

subset 1:  never take other people’s needs or feelings into consideration.  YOU are the epitome of youth–and it is YOUR needs and feelings that need to be heeded.  I mean, if we had to go about being considerate of everyone’s feelings, you might never get heard or even noticed!

3.  Be offended and butthurt whenever possible–especially if you are being ignored or criticized, or if someone thinks differently than you.  The only thing more impressive than confidence, is the speed at which you can show you are hurt by what other people think about something of which you really have no opinion.  Especially if it has nothing to do with you at all.  Practice your disdainful outrage.  Perfect your puppy dog eyes.  Learn to threaten others with the oh-so-effective “I will block/unfriend you” argument that has been known to bring facebook followers to their knees in abject fear and horror that you will no longer pay any attention to them or grace them with your biased opinion.  Indeed, scour blog and facebook posts, searching for someone posting an opinion and think “how can I make this about me?” I’m sure you will find a topic or idea that you can tie directly to religion, politics or sexual orientation, and from there, you have your platform for spouting your opinion.  It may seem daunting, but I promise,  with a few ill-chosen words, you can prove your immaturity with very little work and garner a great deal of attention

subset 1:  being hurt if someone fails to compliment you.  If they cannot make the time to compliment your new profile picture, or how AMAZING your last post was, then you need to let them know how hurt you are by their lack of support.

subset 2:  accusing others of being immature.  remember–if someone strongly or loudly disagrees with you, they are obviously acting TOO young, and need to be reminded to grow up.  This needs to be said with confidence, and some disgust, to really get the point across.

4.  Tell people’s secrets and talk about them behind their back.  But not in a grade school way.  Try to remember the nuance of high school–don’t use people’s names directly, but be clear enough that people know who you are talking about.  Couch all this language in “concern” so that people don’t just think you are gossiping.  No–it need to appear that you are really “concerned” about someone and wouldn’t really “mention any of this” if you weren’t.  Chew your lip if possible, or type “*nervous laughter*” so that those who are listening in don’t think YOU are the bad guy.  This is an art–and don’t worry if you don’t grasp it right away.  You can always refer to rule #1 & #3 if the situation turns ugly and you are accused of gossiping.  And if that doesn’t work, make sure to comment on their sadly out-of-date hairstyle.

5.  The fifth and final trick to staying young is really the simplest:  NEVER think before you speak.  Simply blurt out the first thing you think without apology.  Be willing to ignorantly jump to conclusions without hesitation. Because remember–whatever you think is important, and other people have the right–no, the NEED to hear what you have to say. Maybe by spewing an offensive and unreasonable opinion, your youth will rub off on them, and you can bring the joy of youth to someone so old and mature that they would never THINK to say anything so ignorant or offensive.  It’s not only a way of life, its a method to force youth upon the unwilling and make them hip again!

These simple methods, along with listening to modern radio stations, shopping at Forever 21 and Hot Topic, playing sports that no one else your age is even trying to play and mismanaging any interpersonal relationships you may have, can bring you the joy and life purpose that only immaturity can bring.  AND?  You can legally drink!  Which adds a whole new level of inappropriate behavior to the five rules above.

Seriously, who needs botox?  If everyone adopts this behavioral regimen, we will be fresh faced with dewy optimism in no time, returning us again to the greatest nation status and the envy of every third world around!

For the finest of examples of this behavior, please look at Facebook, and most social media.  A few minutes in should make you aware of the masters of these methods right in your own social circle, and you too, can join the Youth Revolution!  See you there!

Categories: Uncategorized | 8 Comments

Wordless Wednesdays…

huh?  HUH?

Categories: Uncategorized | Leave a comment

OFFS

So, I’ve had a hell of a morning.

Today was Kindergarten Orientation–of which I was made aware a few weeks ago by this lovely flyer sent home…

Now, yeah, I looked on this with trepidation.  A loud auditorium full of kids and fluorescent lights and sing-songy voices, etc.  But I also thought–HEY! INCLUSION!  that’s AWESOME!  Right?  And maybe they’ll be on it enough to make sure Benji’s class is called first,  etc etc.  With as much anxiety as I had about the situation, I tried to remain positive about it.  Other than too much stimulation, what could go wrong?

 

Subconscious:  oh, you poor, poor naive little twit.

 

So, yeah.  We weren’t supposed to even BE at that orientation.  Benji’s class was supposed to just simply start today–like a normal day.

*sigh*

So, we spent an hour (AN HOUR) listening to the inanity of a meeting that wasn’t even a good idea for neurotypical kids, let alone my stimmy one.  We had to sit on the floor, there were flickering fluorescent lights that was putting him into a spin, he hated the clapping, the shouting, the “woo-hoo”-ing–ALL OF IT.  There was stimming (which I don’t mind) and staring (which I do)

They mentioned there was going to be picture taking!  By a famous Rock-n-roll photographer!  All you have to do is wait in this stupid heat!  But please make sure you do!  the kids will be making memory books!  YAY!

(oh, this really can’t go well.  really.  NO. REALLY)

And as they were calling the classes, I am noting that Ben’s teacher STILL isn’t in here.  So I walk up to one of the teachers and ask her (full of southern charm and grace,  BTW) wtf was going on. And she looks at me and says–oh, he’s not with this group.

To which I responded– “well, that’s awesome.”  Could I have been more pleasant?  Undoubtedly.  But I think the thing to notice here is that I could have been MUCH WORSE.  MUCH. WORSE.

Teacher:  “you’re supposed to meet in his room, not here.” *eyeroll*

YES. SHE EYEROLLED ME. 

More important:  I DIDN’T STAB HER.

So I grabbed Benji (hyperstimulated, stimmy overwhelmed Benji), make a face at my husband, and haul off to Room 3.  Where we are greeted with big smiles and friendly faces, and not a sing-song or rock-n-roll photographer in the house.

Turns out it’s a full day for him with lunch and everything–and he doesn’t even have his lunch and backpack with him.

Now, of course, Benji is like–GET ME THE FUCK OUTTA THIS PLACE–which in Benjispeak™ is usually something like “ALL DONE!” or “WE HAVE TO LEAVE” (yay language, amiright?) so he’s freakin out, I’m freakin out, people are coming at us with all sorts of “hey let me help” and my Old Man (Goddess BLESS him) suggests in a smiling way that maybe everyone needs to back up for a minute.  With the exception of one aid (who just REALLY wanted to help) everyone in the room was familiar with what needed to happen and stepped back.

Have I mentioned yet that I was crying?  Crying. Not unusual for a parent on the first day of kinder, to be sure.  But I believe I have established that I am not a pretty cryer.  In fact, think of the prettiest cryer you’ve seen–I would be the EXACT OPPOSITE.

So, I step outside and allow myself 1 minute of fucked up crying.  (because my face is already blotchy–why not go for it?)

When I come back in I am breathing like a human being again, Benji is sitting at a table with his dad–not fully participating–but you know at this point it’s coming.  I go put some $$ on his lunch account since he has to eat lunch there today and come back to Benji still not participating 100%, but warming up.

I introduce myself to the aides, (I’ve already met the teacher before today) and one of them asks me what happened.  After the story is told, she just looks at me  with gentle eyes and says “I AM SO SORRY”–with the sincerity of a nun, this lady.  No–a NICE one.  Cue more tears.  I pull it together again and we give hugs to Benji, who is already starting to ignore us.  The sister Mary AmazingAide shows us where the pick-up gate is and apologizes again on behalf of the entire school.

GODSDAMMIT LADY–QUIT MAKIN ME CRY!

We thanked her and left quietly.

So now, here I am, knee deep in a pint of ice cream and jammie pants with nothing to do for the next few hours until it’s time for pick up.  that SHOULD just give me enough time to pull my shit together.  But I’m not making any promises.

Categories: Uncategorized | 21 Comments

Perfuckt Parunting

I’ve realized something. I’m doing it all wrong.

All this time I’ve been thinking that I can call upon my internal reserves, my college education, my moral compass and an insane amount of pragmatism to guide my own parenting, and I’m JUST. PLAIN. WRONG.

Because, throughout this journey, I’ve been crazy and focusing on my child and letting him grow, instead of controlling every aspect of his life, watching every word I say and putting my own sanity at risk! How foolish of me!

And the fact that he has Autism? WELL! I am most CERTAINLY doing it wrong. Just ask all the experts. Go ahead. I’ll wait.

*whistles badly* (I never was a good whistler. Something else I should be working on)

See? THEY know so much better than I do. I mean, why isn’t my son already mainstreamed? Why won’t he eat kale and drink Kumbacha? Why isn’t he speaking Chinese fluently? And there is NO WAY he’s going to get into the Olympic trials for the 2024 Olympics here in Los Angeles, for which I should be petitioning the IOC with every spare moment I have.

If I am ever to see that elusive unicorn, puking sunshine and rainbows, I really need to change my tactics. I’ve obviously done irreparable damage so far that only YEARS and YEARS of therapy MIGHT be able to reverse, but I can start new from right now. I’ve developed this simple plan to turn me into the perfect parent, based on all my Internet readings, gleaned mostly from Facebook, blogs and parenting magazines.

First: Language.

I must be positive and loving in all things uttered from my mouth. I must never say anything about my own feelings or weaknesses aloud, and indeed punish myself if I ever DARE to think them, as anything negative from me can only be construed as abusive. The Plan: From this day forward I will not speak or write or express myself in any fashion. I will assume, and rightly so, that those around me know far better what needs to be done. Our house will only contain the noise of my son, scripting away and screaming in frustration while I maintain a placid countenance. In a lovely apron and freshly coifed hair.

Second: Scheduling.

My son does not have enough of a structured day. I will plan every minute, and enroll him in 5 or more activities in order to a) extend his education to counter the meaningless public school education that is no doubt damaging his precious psyche and really getting in the way of his full grasp of Latin and the classics and b) give him the parenting role models he so desperately needs since I am obviously still a disappointment since I can’t even muster the energy to homeschool him. These activities, on top of various therapies–approved only by a knowing panel of blogging parents, advocates and celebrities–will foster mental, physical and spiritual growth. I can’t even BEGIN to tell you how I’ve failed him spiritually with my silly pagan beliefs and simple focus on the golden rule. How naive of me to think that without Christianity in his back pocket, that I would just be setting him up for failure.

Third: Diet.

Why I am even allowed in the kitchen is beyond me. Why, I don’t even have my own sourdough starter! It is simply not enough to make homemade meals and menu plan, and have fresh fruit available and a freezer full of meat. NO NO NO. I am not NEARLY vigilant enough about how far my produce has traveled, and the amount of grass eaten, or precisely how many vitamins and minerals my child ingests daily. I don’t even check the GMO status of all produce in a 5 mile radius, and I DEIGN to call myself a mother? In fact *hanging my head in shame* I give him…Gummy Vitamins. (gasp) A travesty, I know. So from now on I will keep a detailed feeding log of every item my son ingests, with a breakdown of all the appropriate nutrients of each. I will buy ONLY from farmer’s markets, where I can speak to the farmer DIRECTLY and make sure each nectarine and leaf of kale was hand picked by fresh faced virgins in the morning dew. OTherwise, i could be responsible for the downfall of our society as we know it.

And, as for my child’s picky eating and limited diet? I can really only blame myself. I mean–and the evidence is clearly out there in the bloggy world–if I would just provide a great variety of healthy foods, he wouldn’t be eating dried fruit and peanut butter sandwiches with homemade jam. NO NO NO. I obviously did not start him on healthy foods, instead allowing him to eat foods he likes like homemade pumpkin soups, which was sadly his favorite food at 12 months. No, I should have put him in front of a plate of steamed kale and not let him eat another thing until he ingested every bite. It’s really my weakness at fault here. If ONLY I could have been a better mother and fed him vegetables when he started out–carrots, green beans and peas not counting, of course. AS if they were legitimate vegetables!

Fourth: Medical.

I can really only blame myself. The vaccines. All those diseases injected into my little boy in order to protect others from getting ill. How selfish of me. How abusive. How naive of me to think that the government is trying to protect those with weak immune systems and newborns by stamping out preventable diseases that kill people. Am I not AWARE of how big pharma runs EVERYTHING in this country? Well, perhaps if I were a better parent, I would have read some of the very insightful blogs about vaccine damage and how I am entirely to blame for damaging my child and causing his autism. I mean, how could I POSSIBLY wrap my feeble brain around the fact that he never reacted to those vaccines and never had any serious regressions after the MMR vaccine or other deadly suspects? Perhaps if I had read more, and not eaten Tuna when I was pregnant, my son would be whole and perfect like those other bloggers’ kids. Shame on me, really. My lack of research and preparation should have disqualified me from ever having children, you’re quite right. Let this be a lesson to new parents–please read each and every blog you can before conception, so as not to make the fatal mistakes I have in my ignorance.

Fifth: Personal Growth.

I am an imperfect human. *sob* A spider hanging over a flame, without any faith in the hand that holds me: the mommy bloggers and parent magazines. I don’t know why I am so contentious. To think that I could come to any parenting decisions BY MYSELF? Preposterous. I should have more faith in the thousands of women before me, and ALL the celebrities with an opinion on anything parental, post-natal and “having it all” oriented. This has always been a struggle of mine–doing enough. I mean, working through college, two bachelor’s degrees, teaching in South Los Angeles–I may as well have put my feet up and sipped piña coladas. But now that I have accepted the gauntlet of SAHM, I must challenge myself beyond keeping a clean home, happy husband and loved child. NO. I must perfect my brainwaves so that all I can think is perfection–because once I do so, I can be the parent my child needs me to be, and join the elusive passive-aggressive-circle-jerk group of perfect mommy bloggers. I can only hope of gaining just a small percentage of the knowledge and wisdom they have attained. I have to do MORE than try–I cannot waiver even for a second, or else it will all be a failure.

These are the goals I must set for myself–besides beauty and thinness of course (those go without saying, right?)–that will allow me to make this world a better place and create a child that will no doubt cure cancer and destroy asteroids with the power of his mind (who needs Bruce Willis with this kid around?) Because until I attain these goals, I am just a shell of a human being, and frankly, unworthy of the title “mommy”.

Categories: Autism, parenting, Snark | 17 Comments

Getting to Know You…

So, I’ve gained a few new followers in the past months and I realize there’s a bunch of folks who don’t really know me. So here’s a little blast from the past from a photo essay exercise I did last year….

January 4, 2011

Post a picture of yourself with 10 facts


10 things about me:

1. I have the ability to memorize the most inane shit, but have real trouble doing math in my head. My mother says I memorized Green Eggs & Ham very young, and I remember reciting Jabberwocky (Alice in Wonderland) early on. But DO NOT ask me to estimate the price of the collective items in my cart.

2. I have two bachelor’s degrees (History & Religious Studies) and a CA teaching credential. I taught for 7 years in South Central Los Angeles. After being professionally burned out, I am now a SAHM, a seamstress, amateur tarot card reader, jill of a few trades, and wedding officiant.

3. I will dye my hair until I am dead (or get preggers again). My natural hair color is the color of boredom. (look close in the picture–my roots are getting bad–but dont’ look too long, you might just fall asleep out of sheer boredom)

4. I’ve been trying to get pregnant for over a year now, and am getting discouraged. I turned 40 this year (well, last year, technically) and it’s like the warning light lit up my dash, and I’ve got a gut feeling that my body isn’t going to cooperate any time soon. And yes, I’ve tried a myriad of “remedies” and have no desire to try anything artificial.

5. I realize it isn’t the thing to say, but I’m not in the “I can recover my child” bastion of Autism moms. I am not part of the Jenny McCarthy mother-warrior crowd. That doesn’t mean I sit around and bemoan the fact that my son has autism. Nor does it mean that I doubt that the tactics that these moms are using aren’t having effects on their child. It doesn’t mean I don’t try some of the same methods/diets/voodoo to help my son. I realize he’s got a struggle ahead of him, and I strive to give him the best tools he needs. But I also recognize that what works for one kid on the spectrum doesn’t necessarily work for another. I realize that makes me a bad mom in the eyes of some. And all I can say is–if it does, then maybe those eyes need to be pointed elsewhere? I respect your GFCFSFcornF life. I’m not saying you’re wrong. But what works for your boy hasn’t really worked for mine, so imma skip the DAN! doctor for now, and would like it if you’d roll your eyes at someone else.

6. I’ve got this weird ability to read people really well. I think I am reading micro-expressions, but couldn’t tell you exactly. I just know 99% of the time when I am being lied to. Doesn’t mean I act on it, but I am aware. Its kind-of a bummer, really. I think I’d rather be ignorant.

7. I get really annoyed with people trying to push their agenda on me or others. (see #5) I get that sometimes you find a lifestyle choice that really works for you, but I have no desire to be a vegan or go on a mission. Thank you.

8. I am a certified officiant of the Church of Light, and can perform weddings. I have only performed one to date–and it was one of the most awesome spiritual experiences of my life. I really hope gay marriage is legalized, because I would love to help anyone create a ritual that enriches their lives.

9. I have NOT lost the baby weight. Ok–I’ve lost half of it, but the rest is killing me. Not that I’m trying real hard. I have a love affair with pastries and baked goods that is seemingly compulsory and horribly addicting. Quitting smoking was easier. (not)

10. Internally I am a hypochondriac. I don’t express it much–but I work out the worst case scenario in my head ALL THE TIME. Chest pain? I’ll have a heart attack on the freeway. Constipation? A blockage that will make my intestines explode. Headache? tumor. This is my internal dialogue, and I’d like it to shut up.

I hope this has given you some insight into my insanity. And maybe now you’ll understand why I am such a hermit. That and I just dislike people. Except you. I like you.

–D

Categories: Uncategorized | 4 Comments

Wading In…

So, I’ve been trying to figure out how to write this.

What I am not going to discuss: 

    • why a person should support gay marriage rights.  It is something I believe in.  FIERCELY.  But there are authors out there better than I who have written beautiful pieces that speak what I consider to be the absolute truth on the matter.  And anything I say would simply be a rehash of what they have already written.
    • Why people who are against gay marriage sadden me.
    • how tasty waffle fries can be.

 

What I am going to talk about: 

  • Amendment 1:  Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

 

There is an argument that seems to be the crux of the pro-Chick-Fil-A movement that says the owner was just exercising his free speech and that everyone against him and his business is just a bunch of liberal haters/bullies that don’t understand the first amendment.

 

Yes, Dan Cathy was exercising his free speech.  And yes, his business is free to make charitable donations to whomever he deems worthy. yes and yes–these things are true.  And I’m not sure I’ve heard ANYONE on the boycott side say that he cannot do that.  I’ve heard them say he “shouldn’t”–but THAT is a different argument.

 

However, I am perplexed at the amount of butthurt feelings that are emerging in response to the boycott.  Claims that the left is “picking on” CHick-Fil-A and trodding all over the first amendment.

Because, and this may make a few people uncomfortable, so bear with me, this boycott?  This action to urge others NOT to eat at this restaurant due to those charitable donations?  ALSO FREE SPEECH.

‘Cause this is how it works y’all.  One side can say what they want (barring libel, slander or threats of violence) and the THE OTHER SIDE can do THE SAME THING.

Example (and some of my former students will have to forgive me trotting out this old dog & pony show) South Central Los Angeles.  Predominately African American and Latino populations.  if the Klan–yes, THAT Klan–wanted to stage a rally right in the middle of Leimert Park (the heart of South Los Angeles), provided they got the correct permits, THEY COULD.  The first amendment protects that right.  Than can roll up in their sheets and confederate flags and abject nonsense and holler into their bullhorns all damn day.  And they are protected.  The law would HAVE to protect them from violence, and anyone who committed violence against them would be guilty of a crime.  I’m not talking “shoulds” here, I’m talking FACT. However, in response, the neighborhood could get together with louder bullhorns, and American flags, and righteous indignation and soundsystems and big beefy tattoos and have a rally RIGHT ACROSS THE STREET from the first rally. (now granted there are legal/permit issues there, but you–hopefully–get my meaning)

Freedom of speech (and religion and press and assembly–ASSEMBLY!!)  doesn’t mean unicorns vomiting American flags while virgins dance in the morning dew.  Freedom isn’t always pretty, folks.  It is not always beautiful young girls standing on Olympic podiums, or glorious soldiers returning victorious.  More often than not, freedom, and everything it entails,  can be extremely uncomfortable.  I am just as uncomfortable with religions that raise their girls to believe they are chattel to their male family members, as they are of me and my candles and spells and potions. It makes me SICK when certain “church” groups (I use quotes here because I think calling them a church is offensive to anyone who belongs to an actual church) picket funerals with their hateful/hurtful speech.  I physically CRINGE when I hear the R word used.  But all of those things–as odious as one group or another may find them, are well within our rights and freedoms under the constitution.  Freedom of speech doesn’t always mean freedom FROM speech.  And when you take a stand on an issue–ANY issue–you are not free from the repercussions of that stance. 

Yes, I wish people would change their minds, just like others probably wish I would change mine.  But I can’t force them to think as I do, nor they, me.  And that right there? That’s freedom folks, in its purest form.

So enjoy that chicken sammich if you want.  Imma pass.  Because I know where I want my dollars to go, and I have no wish to fund hate against those I love.  You have the right to eat where and what you want.  And I have the right to have my own unfavorable opinion on the matter…

And I can sit here and hope that one day, the very issue this whole thing is boiling around won’t be an issue anymore and the people I love will have the same rights that I enjoy. 

And if you want to think I am hateful for thinking that?  Well?  FEEL FREE.

Categories: Uncategorized | 5 Comments

Dawn:

My girl Flannery over at the Conner Chronicles reminded me tonight of my pure hatred of sauerkraut. Here’s a blast from the past…

Originally posted on This Side of Typical:

I detest nearly all foods in the genus Brassiceae. For the non-science geeks, that is anything in the cabbage family. Cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli–anything that will stink up the ENTIRE HOUSE if you cook it.  I see no reason to ever have to ingest them.  EVER.

My true nemesis? Saurkraut. The demon spawn of all cabbage dishes. The bane of my existence. The very trigger of homicidal tendencies.

Now, i know what you’re thinking–how can a girl of such obvious German stock (blonde, blue eyed, fairly translucent skin–eat it Hitler) hate saurkraut?  Easy. There, see? That’s how.

Now, I was a picky eater as a child.  But my mother in all her wisdom taught me to at least TRY everything.  “One bite” was the mantra.  So i’ve tried alot of things with or without “the face.”  Hell, she was able to feed me chicken livers (which i will not touch now)…

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Categories: Uncategorized | 1 Comment
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