7 Randoms: Holiday Ho-Down.

24 12 2012

1.) Maybe I’m wrong, but it’s not technically Christmas Eve until the evening, right?

2.) If you are planning to go to any mega liquor stores today, I’d suggest taking a shot or two or three before going and then walking there. Particularly if you’re in Denver and you’re going to a highly populated one located on Colfax. People are cray cray and super special there today.

3.) I don’t know about anyone else, but I am not very good at the whole present-thing. I think it has to do with being better at the spontaneity of getting something for someone because it reminds me of them, not because I’m supposed to–or at least highly encouraged by our capitalist society to represent my care for people close to me by giving them a tangible object of sorts.

4.) Facebook has given me the opportunity to barely recognize people who used to be very recognizable. Mainly what I’m saying is that I spied on a couple of people who I used to date and they’ve really changed in size and shape. Like, they’re now stuffed-puffy-humans of their former selves. I mean, they have really not taken care of themselves physically at all and it always makes me question if I date people while they’re in their prime– and then when their prime is over I let them go. And if that’s so, have I not reached my own prime? And when it is my prime will I find just the right person who is also in his prime and will we be like this mega-power couple that will change the world for the better? I hope so.

5.) It brings up the topic of weight. I am all for people accepting their bodies in whatever shape or size they find comfortable for them, but I also believe in health, which means being active. People don’t need to run five miles every day to be impressive humans, but to stay alive longer I’d suggest dancing every day–or something that fuels the body and the soul.

6.) But what do I know, people can do whatever they want. Not my problem.

7.) “Not my problem” is a terrific motto for the workplace. Retail work specifically. Also, I think it’s about time that Denver sends me a thank-you card. I’m giving so many of you the proper tools to get off–over and over again– and what do I get in return? 8 dollars an hour. At least a few smiles when I run into you at the over-crowded liquor store would be nice. You’re all welcome by the way.

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Standing in the Way of Control.

18 12 2012

The recent shooting in Connecticut has created a mega-storm in regards to the debate on gun control.

This is not about gun control.

Instead of skirting the main issue we need to confront it head on.

Okay, so a mentally disturbed person used a gun to murder a bunch of innocent people. The equation for a solution that most people see here is to either 1. Take Away The Gun or 2. Give People More Guns

The gun in the equation is not the problem.

I remember when I was younger there was a slogan that became incredibly popular at least in my area of small-town Kansas, which was “Guns Don’t Kill People, People Kill People.” Though this is a true statement, the opposite side of the gun control debate would argue that less people would die if it was less easy to pull the trigger. Both of these concepts are right… in a way.

Again. Not the point.

What we’re failing to recognize here are the mechanism of power that keep this kind of horror repeating itself.

In other words, power—the lack of power and the quest for power—keep us from being free, keep us from feeling safe, keep us from feeling love at its fullest.

Think of a two-year-old who throws tantrums. Why is the kid throwing a fit? Because she or he is coming into consciousness and lacks the ability to communicate proper needs and desires. The child’s powerlessness is realized. How does a parent cease the tantrum? The parent does not throw a tantrum back because this is futile, the parent eases the tantrum with love. Care, affection, understanding.

I refuse to back down on my argument that the world needs more love.

We must re-evaluate what is important.

Money, things, being “better” than our neighbor—these concepts, rooted in capitalism which thrives on individualism, are literally killing us and keeping the rest of us in a constant state of anxiety and fear.

Keeping a gun at our hip will only fuel this more. We will become a trigger-happy society that shoots firsts and asks questions later. We will retreat and become more isolated. We will continue to have no power and even less love in our lives.

Regardless of how cheesy it sounds, we have to open our hearts.

This is vague, but basically it comes down to recognizing other people’s existence on the planet. A smile, a “hello, how are you?,” a creation and development of community connectedness, a willingness to give with no-strings attached. Communication—an open dialogue voicing our needs, wants, desires, concerns, where we actually listen to each other and act accordingly.

In the documentary Happy, sociologists discovered that small acts of kindness literally changed people’s brain chemistry and allowed more endorphins to flow through the body creating a more constant state of happiness. Kindness towards others should be valued more than pleasing the self.

So, yeah, we can sit around and debate all we want to about guns and mental health and health care and democracy but until we get to the root of the issue our society is not going to transform into something better—and neither will we—as individuals.

bell hooks in All About Love (a book I think everyone should read) discusses the concept that love is about helping another transform themselves into the best person they can be—it’s time we do that collectively, not just in pairs, but as a society. We should look out for one another because when we do it makes our own lives more fulfilling and the lives of others more about love, which is what we all need any way.

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Our Country Internally Bleeding.

14 12 2012

On Practicing Love.

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We are isolated. Scared. Alone. Unsure exactly how to feel love and even more unsure how to give it. The more we move away from each other in fear the worse our society will become.

We cannot just shed a tear for the atrocities that happen across our country on a far too often basis. We must act.

We must start practicing love.

And with that practice we have to define what it means, we must become open to talking about it; we can no longer afford to shy away from it because our fears of rejection and our obsession with power is stronger than our need to feel accepted and appreciated on this planet.

When I was in high school and the Columbine shootings happened I, of course was completely freaked, totally saddened by the entire incident, but it gave me pause to take a look around my classroom, to notice the people who had been unnoticeable before–outcasts if you will–and try to be more inclusive. I at least would have conversation with them even if we had very little in common. Perhaps that’s where we have become out of touch. We’re afraid if we do or say the wrong thing we may literally be murdered. We could even be murdered just because we’re in the wrong place at the wrong time.

But we culturally have to dig deeper at the root of these almost-routine societal-suicides. When an individual cuts herself she does so to feel pain, maybe to the point of not being able to feel pain any more–but what is the pain? Where does it come from? What can stop it? When an individual takes his pain out on unsuspecting groups and then himself he does it out of pain. An injustice felt. An internal pain turned externally violent onto the world around him.

We all have a responsiblity. A responsibility to heal our own pains and to help those we love heal theirs.

And we have to get back to love.

Not in a vague random abstract sense, but in a literal actual sense; we have to get back to care, compassion, honesty, trust, loyalty, commitment–to our selves, to our friends, to our family. Without it we will continue to live sheltered unfulfilling anxiety-ridden lives.

It’s obviously not this simple. It’s going to take time and effort on all of our parts.

Perhaps December 21st will be the end of the world, but we can hope it’s an end of a world full of oppression and violence and the beginning of a world full of understanding, acceptance, and love.





Taking Shots.

12 12 2012

The other night, I don’t know what happened, it was Monday and a group of us went to Lost Lake where I accidentally got way too drunk.

I took shots.

After all these years I should know better, and yet I still think that my body has adapted, that I can handle them now. We left Lost Lake and two friends went to bed because they had to work the next day, but I did not. My other friend and I went to Wymans where we took more shots. He and I were having a private conversation and yet this drunk asshole kept interrupting us.

drunk shots

This was the first time in a very long time that I have interacting with such a blatant misogynist. I guess I could consider myself lucky for being able to surround myself with such non-assholes for so long. This guy made me feel a rage I have not felt in quite a long time.

Besides him interrupting us and being a complete misogynist he was also an egomaniac–he continually bragged about what an awesome person he was because he saved 100 lives a day doing super amazing scientific work and how he basically ran all of the city of Austin. He knew everyone. He could hook up anyone with anything. And then bro time came out where he tried to prove his point by hooking up my friend with a bunch of numbers to people that could help him get a job. When he took a moment to take a drink aka shut up I asked him how he was going to hook me up with people, since he OBVIOUSLY had so many connections. It was at this point he proved his pure woman-hating ways and more or less explained to me that I was an idiot woman he didn’t care to help. Then he ignored me and tried to talk to my friend some more about how awesome of a scientist/Austin-networking guy he was.

Because I was drunk, but not quit belligerent I excused myself to the bathroom so I would not rip his balls off and shove them down his throat.

I, of course felt hurt, saddened that someone could be so rude, but more than that I felt sorry for him. He will never know what it’s like to truly care about other people, he will continue to live a life where all he does is attempt to impress others instead of love them. His foundation of self-esteem is so low that no matter how successful he becomes he will never be satisfied. He will become bitter, resentful of the world. And no one will ever like him. Truly like him. He will more than likely find people who will use him, but he will also use them, a symbiotic relationship of fake-ness in an attempt to feel fuller.

So yeah, he pissed me off, but I did not let it get to my core being.

There are a lot of experiences such as these that build up and can really bring a girl down, something that I’m learning to do is to not take other people’s words or action as truths to who I am. This seems obvious but it’s much harder than it sounds. When people say negative things about you it’s difficult not to take that in and believe it, but it’s necessary to let it go. His words are reflections of his beliefs, not mine. Of course, I wish I would have told him off, but all I can do is better prepare myself for my reactions if anything like that ever happens again.

I will for sure no longer be taking shots (plural).Though puking all day is a rather humbling, almost spiritual experience–but that’s another topic for another day.





Word + Word + Word.

4 12 2012

So. The reason there were basically no blogs in November was due to that National Novel Writing thing. Where people sign up to write 50,000 words in 30 days.

I did that.

Honestly, afterward, I feel nothing.

I know I should feel some sort of achievement but really I feel like I wrote the longest blog rant in the history of the universe.

In a way, it’s like all that writing didn’t even happen. I can barely remember it. Perhaps that’s how marathon runners feel. Oh yeah, I ran like 25 miles but I only remember the beginning and the end. Or something. I don’t know, I’ve never ran a marathon.

I do know that this “novel” that came out is no novel at all. It is merely a first layer of paint. Or as my friend said, an initial sketch (since paint cannot be erased and pencil can). So, these 50,000 + words are the building blocks for something better.

Obviously writing a readable novel in 30 days in pretty much impossible. I mean it took Faulkner six weeks to write As I lay Dying.

And though it took Kerouac three weeks to write On the Road (on a speed binge, mind you) he still had to have someone edit it after.

So yeah, as Annie Dillard says her book The Writing Life,

“Some people lift cars too. Some people enter week-long sled races, go over Niagara Falls in barrels, fly planes through the Arc de Triomphe. Some people feel no pain in childbirth. Some people eat cars. There is no call to take human extremes as norms.”

What would be the norm as a writer is to go back and painstakingly fix every single sentence I wrote last month.

Until it is something.

Something more than the nothing that it is right now.

But I’m going to let it breath a little, like a nice glass of red wine—even though at this point it’s more like a can of Natural Light. Nonetheless, I’m going to let it rest and go back in a couple of weeks and try to resuscitate it.

Only time. And effort. Will tell.

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