Posts tagged ‘life’

But I’m really a Cat Person

I’ve had a cat residing with me for approximately three years. I love my cat. We sometimes resemble each other…depending on the week. I don’t know if her overall independent neediness rubs off on me, or if she picks up on my laziness and follows suit…or possibly it is vice versa. Either way, in the past three years I have learned that I am a true cat person. There was a reason my favorite DC character was always Catwoman. I don’t know why I ever doubted this about myself. I was clearly supposed to be a cat.

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I said if I ever had a house I would have a dog. I am not sure why I thought this was my story, although I do like dogs. I thought I wanted a big dog, a retriever maybe. “Dogs are loyal. Dogs have personality. ”

They are and they do…Boy do they ever.

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photcred: elwood023 (instagram)

I have a great friend who is a dog person. She also lives right across the hall from me. She recently brought into our lives a large husky baby. This white ton of fur is only a little over a year old. He loves to moan and talk and run. I opted to help my dear girl with her dog needs. Which means that most of the time I’m sitting and watching her deal. I might play with a chew toy with Hendrix, but I’m not like …running him in the park. When he jumps on me I’m not helping her “teach him discipline”. I’m not assisting with the teaching of tricks (why?). I hold  the leash once while we walk him and train my core muscles while keeping him from jerking my life around.

Friend: “You have to talk it out of him, otherwise he is never gonna poop…omg are you listening, are you like in your own world??”

Me “WHAT??”

Friend “You have to talk to him …like I do”

Me “Omg are you serious?? I exclaim. Then, after watching the dog smell every leaf of grass for signs of ” other puppy” bathrooms, I began to imitate all dog owners I know: “HENDRIX! ARE YOU GONNA POOP?? DO YOU NEED TO POOP! COME ON BOY LETS POOP!!” I turn back to her with my resting bitch face..”how was that?”

I mean really? We don’t have to coach him to pee. I don’t get it.

I do love Hendrix. I don’t like it when he wants to lick lotion off my legs, but he is good as a pillow. He gives good full body hugs…whether we  think we want them or not. He is soft and as big as he is he CAN prance like a deer when he wants. I like he talks in his dog voice with different inflections. It’s quite interesting. He loves me, I’ve named myself his crazy aunt.

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photocred: Elwood023 (Instagram)

 

I dont like it when he begs for food every single time it is in our hands, as if he has been banished to a foreign country where they hunt dogs. I’m supposed to discourage him from doing this in the same way I am supposed to encourage him to poo. But I don’t. I just put on my grumpy cat face and ignore him. I don’t like to try to make him not jump and scratch on us. I thought that it was because I empathized with Hendrix and the fact that he doesn’t understand but now I think it is because maybe in the back of my cat brain I just assume he should know and if he doesn’t know then my nonchalance about the issue will make him figure this out. When I ignore the cat she’ll go away ( unless there is someone new she is curious about or she has NOT YET had her food. If she has NOT eaten then she will get vengeful, which is understandable and so this is something we have in common 😎)

“You have to help me with this, he has got to stop doing that! He wont learn unless you tell him no, smack him on the nose. Be more aggressive!!!”       The only time I have laid hands on the dog is that one time when I was making an important phone call (to a man no less) and Hendrix wouldn’t stop howling and jumping on me. I slapped the ever loving moan out of him and immediately he silenced himself.

Me: “Yeah here is my territory border, dude… hissssscratchh.”

The reality of my cat persondom (as opposed to dog life )struck me this morning before eight o clock. I’m a bartender and so naturally nocturnal (another similarity) I was awoken to my dear friend knocking at my door. I contemplated pretending to be gone but she knows me too well. So at her second plea, I opened the door. In my sweat shorts and a Mickey shirt from Old Navy, with no under clothes on, hair awry and sleep in my eyes. Her big blue pleading eyes that could only otherwise be on a small orphan child holding my attention, her hands clasping Hendrix’ leash as he strained forward trying to get to my escaping cat. “Can you please take him for his morning walk? I have to get to work or I’m gonna be late”

I have to focus. Nope not a dream . “Ok sure, just give me a min-”

“Thank you, I’m sorry..” handing me the leash..

“lemme get dressed”

“No you have to take him now, he is gonna do it in the floor if you don’t! you look cute! You are ok, just please”

“Then let me get my shoes!”

She hands me the dog..

“I cant hold the dog in the apartment, he is going after the cat-just hold him one more second”

One minute later she is in her car on her way and I am outside in the morningness walking the dog who pees rivers as soon he steps out the door. Right on the pavilion post out front. Then he walked three steps and did it again. Then he did his ritual marking. ( what’s the real difference?) I knew he had to do number two so…I had to prance down the sidewalk for ten minutes waiting on this to happen. Yes…I finally “talked to him”
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photcred: Danielle Bethune (me)

After loud morning negotiations he finally gave up the shit, which smelled to high heaven and was the same color as the pine needles under a tree that is planted across the sidewalk in front of the Lutheran Church. The three piles he walked out of himself was under a tree a quarter of a mile from our building. I looked at the mess…then at the poo bag tied to his collar. “Oh I ain’t picking that up” I thought and proceeded back to apartment. ( picture of Hendrix prancing after his relief). Then I realized that this was right in front of the church and this is Easter week.

“Sigh”… I can’t let little kids walk in crap that I knew was there. I went back and filled the little bag with pine needled crap and chucked it in the garbage can.  Hendrix was happy and I got him back to his food bowl safe. I thought to myself that maybe I should rotate this morning duty with my friend. It is probably good for me. Nice oxygen to the brain. I’m ready for the day. I mean it’s kind of human bonding thing.

This is dog owner in the city life. Going outside in near nakedness without shame, screaming at your dog to poop, and feeling completely balanced in life because every other dog owner is doing and thinking the same. I know they do because I’ve sat outside at night with my wine and smokes watching and judging them.

Then I went back to my apartment, put on a pot of coffee and snuggled back down and took a small nap…just as my cat was doing.
Because that is how we roll.

photocred (me)

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The Theater

    I’m just an observer and this really isn’t about the the election. If you let people talk long enough they tell on themselves. If you watch anything long enough you see all the parallels between them. I would ask anyone watching or participating in any public discourse or politics in the past year to ask first what makes sense. From what I can see, nothing does. I’m not supporting Trump, but I also can say truthfully that I’ve watched speeches, and then seen those same speeches chopped up in the media. On still another hand, he doesn’t need the media to help him incite or anger people. He is quite smart on how to do it himself. The Bernie supporters love to talk about love and how he is the candidate for love. On and on it goes…but when Bernie himself makes excuses and claims “he cant be responsible for the actions of his supporters” (you know when they have their own rallies and become violent in their reactions) he gets a free pass…because tolerance. Both Sanders and Trump have their share of violent and obsessive supporters, the same can’t be said for Clinton; she doesn’t need violent support she has her own record of violence and support of violence. She also has old hat feminist like Steinem and Albright, who recently stated that “there was a special place in hell for women who didn’t support other women”. These same women never ever support conservative or independent voting women who come under attack. Yay for tolerance. When we step back and look at this chaos and take our emotions out of it we can see that it needs our full attention and participation to run. Whether it is our anger or our support. Whether it is our social media likes and shares, or our tears of redemption when we feel acknowledged. Whether it is our full belief in the demonization of one side or our full belief in the saving love of the other, it takes our full attention with its distracting noise. It as distracting and entertaining and time consuming as any football game or “dropped album by Bey”.

      In 2016 we are having a hard time with what is a man and what is a woman, what is straight man who identifies as a straight woman and what is straight woman who identifies as a gay male…or something. We want to remake society for these questions and ignore that Russia is buzzing our own bases, Syrian hospitals are being bombed and fifty people including the last pediatrician are killed, there are three nuclear plants leaking on our own soil , there are family detention centers aka prisons and little children who probably cant speak English stand before courts without representation, while we stand quietly and judge or ignore. Jews are fleeing the UK because they don’t feel physically safe-all while in our universities we demand “Safe spaces” for our feelings and dis-inivite or shutdown dialogues we don’t agree with, and get on violent BDS trends. Because tolerance.

          I was thinking about all this and how passionate and emotionally high this election cycle has been. People are voting feelings. No matter what the media portrays, I can assure you that the Trump supporters I know are not “rich white racist”. The Sanders supporters I know are not “a bunch of communist”. In fact I’ve been surprised at who I have found to support him. What all of them have in common is a belief that their candidate will change the status quo. Getting down to the dirt of what those running actually speak with their mouths and ideas, it is very crystal clear, that no they will not nor can they change the system. In fact much of what they propose will not change the system because what they propose is already a huge part of the system.  In 2014, a good friend of mine told me “we can’t fight them, but they want us to think we can. The US is prepped. Protect your mind”.  Since I lost him, all I see around me is evidence that he was right. Though he would argue with my worldview, and had nothing for my religion, I know he was right and we agreed that there was a predatory system on this planet.

     None of these people are the devil nor Jesus, but I will say that as a Christian I have kind of been sickened at how Christians have rallied behind Trump..and then the ones who have also rallied behind Sanders. No, people of the internet, the tribal ways in which the ancient Jews and Christians lived was not socialist. It was not communist, heck these were not even words back then. These were tribal communities and they lived as such-and they were in hiding or in struggles with the governments much of the time. We need to think about that.Because we are all guilty of trying to play a system that is not God’s system. It is the worlds system and it has played us and it is still doing it. Every time a politician plays to the evangelical vote, or pretends to care about the Christians being killed somewhere else, or panders to Pat Robertson, we respond like Pavlovs dogs. On the other side they do it with abortion rights and name calling religious people extremists and hatemongers. Well, we are all guilty of falling for that experiment I guess. But to my fellow Christians, please understand that from where I sit, there is no difference among any of them and we are headed for a dark place. If any of us thought any candidate would keep up from going there we were sorely wrong.

It is time to remember who we are, and stop playing the worlds game. We need to pray-not “Against” this or that, but pray for our souls, pray for each other and seek God on what to do and how or who we can help in the coming days. I guarantee you that no matter who is in office, more people will need help than ever before and it will be up to the creative gifts bestowed on us, to be His hands and feet. We must pray for wisdom on how to speak and react, because the powers that be are watching and waiting for any opportunity to accuse us and silence us or use us as pawns to enact some new bill up their sleeve. Wherever you go to pray, go there. That is what God is waiting on, He can deal with the rest, He isn’t even concerned about it. I assure you that He is concerned with how His children are worrying and playing in it.The seeds we have sown in the past have fully grown and are coming for us, let us stop perpetuating the growth, repent for our part in it and move forward, not worrying about this evil system but being about truth.

“Keep your mind clear, and be alert. Your opponent the devil is prowling around like a roaring lion as he looks for someone to devour. 1 Peter 5:8

“Do not call conspiracy everything this people calls a conspiracy; do not fear what they fear, and do not dread it.” Isaiah 8:12

A Few Bones

   I’ve got a few bones to pick with players who like to get on social media and make attempts at sounding smart.

   For a good year now most of the world has been decrying the actions of ISIS. This has been news on and off, terrorizing our minds, and imprinting the question “how could any human being do this? When they caged and burned a Jordanian pilot alive, when they beheaded 12 Christians who by the way would not classify as “white”, when they pushed homosexuals off rooftops, and every thing in between or since, I have looked at the petty narcissistic things that we in America call “oppression” or “hate” and wondered how we even function. I expected after the attack on Paris (their second and most deadly) that for a moment the catered to students at high class universities might actually have some real life compassion or at least see reason. That wasn’t to be. All day I have seen other write ups and blogs like mine which repeat the narcissistic tweets from Missouri spouting how the media is “using” the tragedy to sweep this nations racist problems under the rug. Then the ones that call out “sick white people who only care when other white people die”. You know, because it’s Paris and only white people are french…which would be classified as a racist statement I do think. I’m not going to give them any more traction by repeating them, that is what google is for. I don’t know how grown men begging for the lives of their wives to be spared and survivors hiding among dead bodies in pools of blood, equals alleged name calling. I don’t know how it equals wealthy students fighting free speech that disagrees with them. If a real hate group came on campus and opened fire, and blew themselves up and took the lives of half the campus, then yes that would be equal but that is not happening. Thank God that is not happening, but sometimes it seems that the mass media and social media and it’s pawns wish that those kinds of atrocities would happen. We suffer from a serious lack of empathy in this country, and according to psychology that is actually called narcissism. I actually wrote a thesis on cultural narcissism. We love to hate ourselves here, and then blame everyone else for the scars.
     Days before the Paris massacre, ISIS also hit Beruit, but it wasn’t as big as news. Apparently this is also a result of racism. Is this “Racist” or is it just the magnitude of PARIS. If it had been Tokyo or Rome I’m sure the outpouring would have been the same. Images of Paris are part of our thought patterns whether we have been there or not. Art of all kinds is influenced by Paris. Fashion icons are only made in Paris. Paris is always a good idea according to Sabrina (think Audrey Hepburn), So it makes sense that the average American becomes sick to their stomach when they see her streets look like a war zone, it naturally shakes and disturbs. That’s natural I think. Quite honestly I’ve been disturbed and shaken more than once in the past two years. So much so that I’ve had to stop following many facebook pages, and media forms that play ISIS stories and commentaries on repeat. I’ve had to stop following some celebrities that help the bandwagon of half truths get around the world and abuse the words “hate” and “sexism”. I’ve felt like a voice lost among millions of voices. I’ve slept a lot because it is easier than engaging, I’ve let my apartment go to shit more than once, because it seems all I do is work and go home and read a lot of belly aching. I’m over that. At times, I’ve had to tell others to snap out of their self loathing state, and sometimes good people have had to tell me the same.

     I get it, we are all conditioned to feel like we deserve something more than we have. Like we are entitled, that entitlement theory that conservatives like to throw around is just as much poison as the liberals throwing around “privilege”, because we all have suffered or been divided by both theories.  I, a singe woman who works a full time job, with zero financial support from any one else, with much more debt going out than money coming in, graduated with a bachelors this past May and got not so much as a congratulations card. Wow things were so much easier when you were a kid and every Birthday you got a few cards with five bucks in them, and when you got out of high school all your elders acted like this was the height of your entire life. Too bad it wasn’t the height of our lives  and we had to keep going. We have to keep going and to do it we have to think past the bull crap. We have to get out of our safe spaces, because the work place doesn’t have those. Friendships don’t have those. Life doesn’t have those. Your home is your safe space. Your head is your safe space. My bed is mine, but I got out of it this evening and kissed my big fat cat bye and came to engage in a hipster coffee shop where African Americans, possibly lesbian Americans and white girls talking through their noses, somehow manage to drink coffee and not shoot each other up. Too bad we don’t see the irony in our woes.Too bad every single one of us cant go visit someone who is considerably less privileged than any of us-because if we are honest all of us has some privileges. Too bad we cant  be grateful before it is too late and we have to remember what we were grateful for. Too bad that we live in a world so stuck on definitions that we can watch people get shot down, beheaded and set on fire and we still want to cry over perceptions of microaggressions and theories of privilege that put all people of each color in their consecutive camp and no one can deviate. Funny, the same place where all these theories came from are the same places that blame religion and racism for doing the same things. 

     ISIS doesn’t care if you are gay, straight, black, white or Asian -oh yes they also don’t care if you are Native American, they have the same statement of declaration for all of us. Paris doesn’t care if the nations reaching out to them in prayer and support are white, black or Jewish.THAT is what true liberal nations are supposed to be and these naval gazing student bodies that have been birthed in liberal college campuses need to venture outside their own boundaries and realize that, while they may still appreciate it. By the way, the American student studying in Paris who was one of those killed, was a young Latina woman. 

No Regard for Human Life part 2

A couple of years ago I wrote a blog post titled “No Regard for Human Life”. It wasn’t about police brutality be it real brutality, provoked brutality or imagined or set up brutality. It wasn’t about ISIS and their mass beheading, stoning or other heinous acts. None of those things were major headlines at the time. It was my expressed frustration over America’s public who would rise up for cats, dogs and other animal cruelties, yet the same people generally stayed silent over every day news stories about injustices and abuses to children. At the time there was a kidnapped autistic child being held hostage with an insane maniac underground. Some had told me the silent reaction to the story was because “we can’t do anything about it”.
Much has changed in the past couple of years. Now the attitude of “We cant do anything about it” has shifted to almost anything and everything being a trigger warning, a reason for protest, and if we are offended or an injustice has been done we feel the right to cause harm to others. What has not changed though is the core of my old post. A general disregard for human life. While we make hashtags and protest every time we feel injustice has been done, whether or not we know an injustice has been done, we still will ignore many other facets of society and ignore the homeless person on the street. Maybe on a psychological level we have to find one sector to champion so that we can deal with some guilt. As long as there are media fed protest and cities burning, white people will continue to put themselves on a cross that reads “privilege”. It’s fashionable these days. That might be another write up though, asking the psychological questions about our current culture…I read an interview yesterday with Camille Paglia and she said described today’s culture as “boring” because “no one is asking psychological questions”. Truly, the new political correctness, with its protection against trigger warnings and it’s blaming everything from eating meat to to getting a bus pass when you have forgotten your wallet on white privilege, is a different form of the old world puritanical system-without the God of course. This makes sense on psychological level, if you don’t regard human life on a high level, then you also don’t regard humanity and it’s virtues highly and you also won’t think that anyone is capable of giving without being guilted into it… or that the person receiving must have a “privilege”. You also may march for certain rights but ignore the basic biology of what is a human, and in your blind righteousness ignore life in front of you. 
When I heard about the Dentist and the lion, I heard it at work. I then read a petition email from an activist organization. The details given implied there was money given and the slaughter of the protected animal was premeditated. I was upset about it. Really. If this was premeditated, the hunter is evil and I have no sympathy for him. If it was accidental that he killed a loved and protected lion, then he is a moron. Either way he should be prosecuted. Fined. Maybe jailed. Should people be on twitter wishing and plotting his death? Is that even logical? What does that solve? It doesn’t matter, this is the new normal. Every time something happens-death upon that person is proclaimed. I think there is even a hashtag that says #killallmen. Bloggers both conservative and liberal get death threats or wishes through emails. It would be harmless but it also is a new normal to shut down peoples businesses and because social media reaches so far, global movements can harass a single person for a short time (because our attention span is short here in America). If anyone ever paid attention they would notice that usually, while circuses are circling about an issue, an outrage, or anything that captures our need to be needed or entertained, there are other more important outrages happening. Things that could use all that passion we are using up. Most of the time we don’t want to know though, because it requires much more thought, consideration and maybe even changing how we look at things. Was I upset about the lion-hell yes I was upset. I was enraged. A few weeks ago, I was upset and almost cried over a man I didn’t even know who I heard was killed and hidden in cement by his family for lottery money he won. When I expressed how disturbing that story was, someone said “why?…you weren’t the one killed and put in cement” and so goes how many see themselves and others “it ain’t you so dont worry about it”. “It ain’t your people” “It’s not YOUR body” etc. etc. etc.
Let’s get real for a few minutes and look at some hard things. Planned Parenthood is under some serious investigation, for what many people have been trying to tell others for years. When I was little, there was the constant debate about the “glob of cells” and how abortion was not killing an actual baby. Then there was the debate about “when life began”. Now nobody really talks about those things. Since I became an adult I hear women my age and significantly younger defend abortion rights vehemently and angrily. They repeat everything that has been imprinted on  them by their feminist teachers who were imprinted on by Gloria Steinhem. The only way I have learned to have these conversations is to not have them. Ask a question, ask one that makes the rhetoric stop and uncomfortable reality set in. Once, on Tumblr, there was some reblogged images of embryos and partially formed human babies on plates and a man seemed to be eating them. In social media fashion, the young users reblogged over and over virtually screaming for the mans demise, for him to be turned in, the disgusting atrocity of it all! A simple google search and link back from the pictures revealed this was an Asian artist and these were not actual unborn human infants. I made a post about the reality and that this artist was actually a genius-he made people react to the vision of a partially formed baby -outside the womb- being desecrated. It’s only a desecration or an abuse, or bloodthirsty or callous, if we can SEE it. See what they did there.
The videos being uncovered about Planned Parenthood answer every question we ever really had about the caring nature of this organization should make us inquire as to why it funding from multi million dollar corporations, we could even go as far as to question  why a cure for breast cancer is not acknowledged and the Susan G Komen foundation has a full monopoly on the month of October ( Pink October is in bed with PP if you didn’t know). While we are at it, let us repeat over and over the history of PP and how Margaret Sanger was a white supremacist whose religion was eugenics. This is what PP was birthed in, so while we are all debating about the confederate flag (or watching others debate about it) we ignore that the whole premise of PP was to eradicate the black race, and the Jewish race, and poor soldiers and probably anyone else that did not fit the quota of perfection that Margaret Sanger envisioned. I guess we can ignore that not so hidden history because Sanger was a woman. Women can do anything as long as they aren’t conservative or don’t sleep with Republicans (according to Jessica Valenti). I mean really, women can get men fired from their jobs by accusation. We can get free birth control most of the time. Being a women in America IS a privilege, the white feminist just aren’t in the least bit grateful for it-they are too busy demonizing Camille Paglia, Christina Hoff Somers, and Ayaan Hirsi Ali. Look at the diversity of those three women and see the blind hypocrisy of third wave feminism.
We get on major movements for as long as the talking heads are spinning it, but this is one they do not want to spin, they don’t want to talk about it except to talk about if it is reflective of the entire organization. My questions are still the same because it is not really about PP to me, it is about the desensitization to images of death, it is about the desensitization of women to their own biological instincts. It is about a society that would rather debate about who is privileged, who is entitled yet agree that the right of abortion is fundamental and will still campaign their little hearts out for the candidate that promises their right and their daughters right…all while they continue the desensitization. It is about our short termed shock about these things, as if it were just a new episode on Game of Thrones and next week we will be over it and waiting on the next shock. It’s peoples willingness to get angry about grey areas that aren’t obvious, yet their generic and biased answers to very clear and bold stories. An autistic child is locked in a room by himself for “Acting out” , shrug and argue about “these problem children”. We’ve all heard these apathetic answers to atrocities. A child is shot in the stomach because he was playing with a toy gun? Ban toy guns and have that conversation about gun control again. A little Native American girl got tazed by police? Well…you know how rough those people are out there… ISIS drowned men in a cage, threw homosexuals from a roof and stoned women adn beheaded thier husbands….well you know those videos probably aren’t real and look at Westboro Baptist…. Planned Parenthood is selling baby parts? Baby body parts? Well…what else are they going to do with them… Forget all of what this actually means-we don’t want to know that. It means in all our “freedom of choice” we were actually getting took and used and abused. It means in all our marches for black lives matter, we were part of keeping black lives at a spiritual and economic devastation and our support for the abortion industry and our ideological shifting of the definition of life was part of that plan, devastating all of our senses. It means we ignore any woman that doesn’t espouse the “right to choose” and then we cover up the stories of emotional devastation after these “procedures”. It means we have to face the fact that the real possibility that if this heinous of a thing has been going on, then it is most likely that every other thing that has been “suspected” is also true. Such as sterilization. Yeah they used to do it in secret now they make women think its a good idea.

Man that lion though, he was innocent in a protected environment-where he thought he was safe. Someone came in, cut off his head and skinned him. Maybe it is an imprinting from our youth. Animal cartoons. Movies. The Lion King. The environmental and endangered species messages we got growing up. While babies usually were the aggravating noise -cute but in the way, hard to love. Love for a child takes sacrifice-we saw it all the time. A child melts a heart. Some angel for a hardened soul. Special but for someone else. Animals though…everyone loves animals. Animals are innocent and helpless and love unconditionally. That is the hidden message. Children no one has time for, cause problems, take more time and I’ve even heard it said “it would be selfish to bring one into this world”. So maybe that is what it all is about-we think we are all better off dead, but we won’t kill ourselves-just our future. Yeah I was upset over the lion…I was shocked and silent and fuming for probably half and hour. I was upset because I am a human being and it is natural to be upset, but I was already upset over the many shared posts about the Planned Parenthood scandal that no one wants to talk about and when they do they don’t talk about it as a reality but a conspiracy. I was already upset about the indifferent view about this now “non issue” that people pretend to not have an opinion on because they are ” not into politics”.  I was blindsided with glaring reality that every issue right now that has been drummed into our sights is ever present in Planned Parenthood and yet it is dressed up and sold as “reproductive FREEDOM” but if we go outside the womb none of these mentalities are acceptable. Out of sight , out of mind. It’s not out of sight anymore.

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Also happened this week

Native Women left in holding cell dies

sorting baby parts by PP
ISIS sympathizer planned to bomb Key West

Every One is Allowed a Really Bad Call-and Other Life Lessons in Football

   A few months ago, I wrote a blog titled “In Thirteen Days, RTR”. Yes, I live in Alabama, and in Alabama, we do football. Our bonds and most of our arguments are made around football. Some say I’m not a “real” Alabama fan, I’m just a Nick Saban fan. Well…I do love the man. Some say I’m not a “real” Alabama fan, because if Auburn goes to the National Championship, I have been known to pull for them. Well…let’s discuss that shall we? 

   Interesting enough, earlier today a co worker and I were discussing the Iron Bowl, before it aired. He could not figure why the Auburn fans even wanted Auburn to beat Alabama. Something about the rankings that I did not understand. If Auburn beats Alabama, they still cant make the National Championship and if Alabama loses all they can say is that they beat them, and then Alabama can’t go the the Championship. I mean, would the Auburn fans REALLY rather another state get the title just so Alabama wont have it? I answered this question with a look of “do you LIVE here, and a “yes”. I named some people that we both know, who would absolutely rather LSU, or ANYONE win besides Alabama. On our side, there are even those types of fans. May we never forget the troglodyte who poisoned tumors trees. These types of fans (on both sides) are the people that make football games allot less fun, at least for me. I can poke fun, and have a sense of humor, but some people make it their business to get incredibly angry and take personal shots. I just think it lacks intelligence, and I dont get in those conversations. I found out an acquaintance of mine, is indeed an Auburn fan. I would have never ever known. He does not trash talk, nor does he hate Nick Saban. I deem him the most respectful Auburn fan that I know. We are all in the same state, rivalry is great. It’s awesome. But poisoning anything and wishing the season to be shattered for both teams is unreasonable. But that is just who I am. When Auburn played Oregon in the National Championship, I pulled for Auburn, and other fans who bleed Crimson pulled for them as well. We are in Alabama, why pull for a bid duck in green? What is the point? We pulled for them, biting or jaw and not screaming “War Eagle”, but we did it. I know many more who just cannot do that. They seethe and hate Auburn, or they seethe and hate the Tide. It’s stupid and it is not classy. 

     I gotta give credit where credit is due. The Auburn Tigers have made a great comeback, their new coach has turned what was a horrid team (last year)  into a very FAST and well playing team. I may not understand all the logistics of football or the politics of the ranking system-but just watching them tonight and the last game they played with that incredible “hail mary” gave me an inspired feeling, even in the sadness and disappointment that my team would not be making the Championship this year.

   Rest assured Saban wont sleep for a few weeks. He is a perfectionist and he will replay this night over and over. He will  pre plan next years Iron Bowl in the back of his mind for the remainder of this year. I watched his 60 Minutes interview http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xEp47-kX6jg and the man has a process, a plan and “gold standard”. His team was “off” tonight and it was a really bad time to be off. He will take that burden as his responsibility and fix it for next time. In part of his statement afterwards he said:
  “It just looked like we did not have anybody down on the right side. The right wing and the right tight end, everybody is supposed to fan the field. We covered to the left; that is why he went to the right. I could not see it that well down their sidelines. First time I have ever lost a game that way, first time I have ever seen a game lost that way. We had the wind behind us, but he still should have covered it. The game should not have ended that way.” 

 It could be said that Auburn’s new coach has brought a new level of rivalry, who knows. It is a sad night for us, but there will be another season. Another Iron Bowl and a new plan. That is what good coaches do. If not (or if they lose the whole season) they are fired. Case and point-Auburn. Everyone make a “sure” bad call, or play, from time to time. It’s the game. In life, we are our own coaches. We make bad calls. Bad calls that we are sure about and might even bet on. We still lose. But we are our own coaches, and if we are  losing the game then we change our play. If we still lose the game and we are good coaches and we want to achieve more, and make progress, then we will  analyze the plays that we made and do it differently the next time. If we are good coaches then we sure don’t give up, stay down and say our hands have already been dealt to us and keep being losers. We cant fire ourselves and let someone else win for us, and if we do not admit our mistakes or take responsibility for our losing moves, then we will just make those same moves again. In psychology this is called insanity.Everyone makes a bad call, and everyone is allowed. Live long enough, and you WILL make a bad play. Be a good coach and you will learn from it and do it differently the next time. “The game shouldn’t have ended that way”. Next time it wont.

Roll Tide

My First Day as a Juror

    On a lighter not in the heated blogging of the night…hey I cant do anything else. I cant clean because I’m a minor cripple at the moment. I have no school work, because I have withdraw my involvement with the semester due to other pressing matters. I probably wont sleep until late because-well it is my disposition to have trouble sleeping these days. So I have written a couple of blogs that just may get me hate mail. Oh well, such is the life of bloggers who think allot. Now though, I’ll just write about another interesting day I had. I told you all that I should just start a third separate blog dealing with the random events of my life. Such a blog though, may seem a little self absorbed so I may not do that.

     Yesterday I reported for jury summons. I have never served on jury duty before and had no idea what to expect. I should have, being a resident of Jefferson County…I should have taken all things into consideration. I would have, had I not nearly overslept and almost missed the reporting time.
    My clock was set for 6:30 and my reporting time was 8:30. I only live approximately two miles from the courthouse, but given the fact that it was Monday morning and I generally have a propensity to get lost down town just looking for a place to park…I wanted to be safe and give myself two hours to get ready and be there early. Such is life, I didn’t go to sleep until around four. Why? Oh I don’t know…my mind wouldn’t close down for it. My alarm went of at 6:30 but the next thing I knew I was waking at 8:15….

   I jump out of bed like a ninja and jump into some clothes I had laid out already, brushed my teeth and ran out the door. Waited on my slow elevator and then waited as it stopped twice before letting me off on the first floor. Then I realize…I parked up on that dang hill.
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I tend to walk pretty fast but I did have heels on, so I couldn’t make the same stride. Finally I make it. I find the address on the summons and take off…realizing that I never filled out the form on the summons. It was just a card with blank spaces for current phone number and round mileage from home to courthouse. I get down town after what seems like the longest red lights on earth. I cant find where the parking deck is, so I park in the same lot that ended up costing me sixteen dollars when I went for my astronomically priced truck tag. I hope they are gonna validate my parking..maybe..?

   The “jury management address is what is on the summons…so I dont think it is the courthouse. I use my WAZE app to take off walking down the street. WAZE app stops me in front of the energy building where two people are hanging out outside. I ask them where the jury mngmt. building is, but they have no idea. “It’s gotta be around here somewhere” they say. Well yes actually, it does. Finally I go in the energy building, and ask the nice lady at the desk. “You see that building right there?” she points across the street…”Well the next building over is the courthouse”. Well if I did not feel dumb before….”Thank you mam, I’m sorry it didn’t say that on the card…” “Oh it’s ok”, she says as I walk out. I am now officially ten minutes late. I walk in the courthouse where there is security standing with their big scanning rig, he saw my summons as I was putting my purse and keys in the plastic box. “Mam if you are in jury it would be quicker if you went to the next door and up to the second floor.” I dash back out and down the steps and to the “next door” which has a posting that “this door is no longer in use, please use main door”. Honestly….I’m walking down the street and meet another woman who asks if I’m looking for the jury building too. “Yes, I’m late!” I say. She was too and we both found it…across the street from courthouse..not in the courthouse or “next door” to the courthouse.

   We finally make it to the jury pool room, which is huge and has probably two hundred people in it. We weren’t the only ones late so I knew then I was not gonna be fined or jailed or something. I fill out the info I forgot on the card and sat down between people. Getting in and out of the seats was like being in a movie theater because most people had a chair between them. I am sitting there for about five minutes when the little administrative lady takes the microphone and says that a set of keys were left up front…..oh yes it was my keys so I had to annoy the older couple next to me and go get them. Remember …movie theater. 
   A judge comes in and goes over the upcoming procedure. He introduces a kid, whose name I dont remember, “little mikey” who is here from California and is touring the courthouse and obviously shadowing the judge. He wants to be a lawyer. I used to want to be lawyer. I should have done that. I should have joined the marines. Any time anything has went wrong this year I have had that thought “I should have just joined the marines”. 

The judge goes on about some forms that waive the fees of ten dollars a day and the five cents per mile…wait what? I have to pay to be on jury duty…but its a civic requirement? What? He states that about twenty percent of the pool usually does fill the forms out, and it is a testament being that Jefferson County is considered a poor county. I really started to worry then. He finally introduces two judges that are going to basically sift the pool. If you have a legitimate excuse to not be here line up and they will consider them. The guy next to me got called just last month and was released for his excuse, and they called him back. The woman behind me had been released for her excuse and like clock work they called her back. We just decided to stay, in our individual minds. I was just listening to my surroundings. Half the room lined up and surprisingly most of them were released. 
   Another worker bee came in and went over the basics of jury duty. Dont talk if you are put on a case. If you are not put on the case that you leave the room for you are to come back here. Parking one  for jury duty is in the parking deck we are over….”oh” I thought “that is where the parking deck is”. The overflow parking is at the Boltwell (where the heck is that?) if you parked in the parking right out here it is one dollar for the first hour and four for every hour after that. If you parked there you may want to move when we give you a break. We cannot reimburse you for parking there and they will not let you leave…and on that note there is an ATM right outside this door. All I could think of was moving the car now. Would my car even move? What if my car doesn’t move? My gas light was on on the way down here. I was planning scenarios in my mind and what moves to make if my car ran out of gas right here in the middle of downtown. I should have joined the marines. 

  We get let go for twenty minutes and I got my parking pass for the week and twenty bucks out of the ATM which also charges me two bucks for the convenience and ran down stairs and across the lot. Someone in the attendants window did not hear the worker bee on the inside say “cash or check” nor did they see the various postings that said “cash or check”. God don’t let me run out of gas while I am backing up to let this fool back in. I finally hand the attendant twenty bucks, I’m on the ready to hurry and park this rig in its appropriate place before you charge me another four dollars. She looks at me with the same disgruntled expression she had back in February “GIVE ME YOUR PARKING TICKET!” “Oh, I’m so sorry mam, I raffle in the purse to get the blue ticket. These angry city workers my gosh. Finally out of the prison for charge…I make my way just a few feet down the street to the jury parking deck. I go all the way to the last deck…no parking. Will have to park at the ….whatever that name was. I ask the attendant and he tells me “to the end of this road turn left get int he far lane and turn right, it is right by the art museum. I go. I get behind a nimrod who is just sitting in the middle of deck trying to figure out which way to go. I cant believe this is happening. God is punishing me for being irresponsible with my time I just know that he is.  Finally I park. I’m closing in on my twenty minute break. I take off up the street, remembering the directions to the deck from the attendant and reversing them. “where the heck am I?” …I am walking in the wrong direction…”HAVE YOU SEEN THE ART MUSEUM, DANIELLE?”….oh God. I about face and start the other way, as fast as I can in my open toe heels. My feet are sweating, the soles are plastic and my feet are trying to come out the toe of the shoes. Should have known…what a dumb idea. I thought the process of picking the jury would be in doors in one place for a future dated case…Jefferson County. I get back in the jury pool room and from what I could tell nothing had taken place that I missed. 
    The law clerk comes in calls, in alphabetical order, forty two names. I was in them so we lined up against the wall and then followed him to the assigned courtroom. We stood in the hall until the courtroom was ready. Now we are down to the good stuff. The lawyers asked questions and people raised their hands if the questions applied. Each and every hand raised was addressed and heard….this was going to take a while. We were given an hour lunch break. I made acquaintance with a juror who said she has been called five time-twice in New York and three times in Birmingham, but she has never been assigned a case. Oh maybe I wont be assigned…but they act like you will be here all week regardless. I would rather be assigned then recycled back into the pool, I think. I dont know where to eat and I dont want to walk downtown by myself. The lady says the Alabama Power building has a food court and its awesome. OK-lets go, it is food…I love food and have not eaten. The Alabama Power building is about six blocks away. My steps are getting slower and slower. The lady comments on my shoes “you wore them before and you walking like THAT?” Yes, mam…I can walk in heels..I just dont usually walk in them ALLOT…and my foot is sliding out.” I feel like I have lost my feminine grace card. During lunch I look down and see blood seeping out from under my toe. “Oh God”. I cant take my shoes off and inspect right here in the place of food but from what I could see of my sole it looks inflamed..
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We find a bathroom and I consider walking back to the courthouse bare foot…but when I see that one of my feet has lost skin I think it would be better to not get a air born infection into my bloodstream….I also would like to not leave what remains of my feet on the concrete. So I put some paper towels in my shoes to keep from sliding my feet anymore. We start off back to the courthouse. Which, in normal life is only about a ten minute walk. My steps are getting slower, and my friend who is busy telling off her daughter on the phone has forgot about me. A scrawny man with a plastic bag in his hand tries to stop me and ask me questions. Having lived downtown for a while now, I can sense when I am about to be asked for money and I quicken my pace “sir I am headed for jury duty, I cant stop”. He gets pissed off. He is saying something I cant make out about the white guy ahead of me that I cant see thinking or saying something about him. He takes off the opposite way then comes back. I’m walking as fast as I can to try to catch up with the little lady juror friend. He is walking around me saying something in tense tones, I ignore him. It is broad daylight and the sidewalks have people. There are cops close by for Godsake it is the courthouse square. “WOULD YOU PLEASE STEP OUT OF MY WAY” the guys says….there is plenty of sidewalk beside me, which he already knows because he is burning it up walking back and forth. He takes off ahead “YOUR HEELS AIN’T THAT HIGH!” He goes on about “you people” and finally disappears and I can still see my friend ahead.
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Way ahead. “I thought you were my friend” I thought…”you left me to the hounds”.

  Back in the jury box my feet were pounding. So were my calves and my back. It was cold and I was trying not to doze. Every time a lawyer asked a question eighty percent of the 42 people raised their hands. When the final twelve were chosen, I noted it was the ones who barely spoke the whole time. Interesting. The process was interesting, I don’t have a problem learning and experiencing things so I thought I might actually take something from this. I just needed to live through the day….oh and get my truck home after this. Where is the nearest gas station in the heart of downtown? I determined that if one was close I should suffer the walk to it, and buy a can and get a little bit,instead of chancing my truck stalling during a time of day when everyone is leaving work.

      When we are finally dismissed for the day, it is four fifteen p.m. and I put in my WAZE app for the nearest gas station-bingo! 0.0 miles away. I start walking. Waze app stops…in front of the energy building. I put in again and there is one less than a mile away…I start walking and realize that there is not one down here either and if there was I cant walk that far. I’m gonna have to ask Jesus to take the wheel and let me get to one with me inside the truck. I reverse my steps and by this time I’m limping and thinking “how did I think I would get gas and make it back after four p.m. safely”. I feel skin moving. “I would have shattered my feet in the marines…they would have killed me”. A car slows down alongside “oh no”. The window rolls down “Oh God no…don’t”

   “Hey good lookin”…this isn’t happening. I keep walking, the pain getting to my knees.

   “How about we get acquainted”. The dude looks like he has a pimp hat and gold teeth. I’m limping. Not swaying. Not jiggling. Not even walking with air of confidence. I’m not nice either. 

   “NOOOOOOO !!!THANK YOU!!!!!” I said loudly as the pain and exasperation came through my yell. “Ok” he said quickly and took off faster than a speeding bullet. 

    I get back to the overflow parking deck and wait at the attendant window for way to long then it should take anyone to open a gate, when you are not paying for the parking spot. WAZE app….takes me back to the energy building. Second option…takes me nowhere. Apparently these are not actual stations that WAZE is picking up. I finally make it a mile away to a gas station. Get fifteen bucks worth and a pack of smokes and head home…but first I get gauze pads, rolling gauze and a jar of peanut butter so I can save twelve bucks on lunch the next day, when the actual case would begin.

    Upon arrival I look at my feet and wash them which was even more painful then walking.

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I bind them up just for the cushioned comfort and to press the salve on. On one foot it looked like I had double cushions on each toe…and blister below each toe. Across the arch was blue and red. The foot where blisters had popped already had skin moved around like a bed sheet after its been slept in. It was pretty gross. Feminine card-gone. Sometimes I honestly wish my feet were bigger. They are small and high arched, and they tend to roll inward. The older I get the more foot pain I tend to have if proper measures are not taken. Today was not a proper measure. 

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So I had a glass of wine and went to sleep. Slept until this morning where I got up bright and early, made coffee and got some cinnamon roles from the vending machine downstairs. I made a peanut butter sandwich, redressed my wounds and rocked my moccasins. Those gauze pads saved my feet today.

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Especially bright and early..walking to my now appropriated parking spot..up this hill…

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It was a good day.

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Moral, don’t walk downtown in cheap heels….and watch your six there are crazy people out there.

Right to Life

    I have written on society and our perspective on life and regard for it before. In the last few weeks I have seen many many articles or comments on articles that further reflect our dying soul as people. In psychology we study many different “personality” disorders, some of them have become more widespread and I wonder if it is a reflection and result from the model of society that we find ourselves in. Maybe it is a compensation for the lack of control in our own lives while government expands in arms into everything having to do with our lives. Our work, love or life means nothing and we a re going crazy and turning on each other. Now there is a thesis that would take years to write. 

    In Frederick, Maryland, a young man with  Down Syndrome died on the floor of a theater, apparently from asphyxiation. The problem is said to be he was sitting in the movie and had not bought a ticket. His caretaker tried to tell the manager not to call the cops, that after given some time Ethan Saylor would understand and leave with her. The cops were called anyway and they paid no mind to the caretaker either. Their tactics, it seems, caused the young man to panic and he died. His mother was on the way to the theater to resolve the situation. The story was more than disturbing to me, I have two special needs siblings. One of them has her own way of communicating and there are times where a few moments is needed, or she may have a “melt down”. Only people who have special needs family members or people who work with disabled people of this variety understand-you cannot communicate with an autistic or DS person as if they were you. More people then I care to admit, do not respect or accept that. The comments on this story reflected that point, not all but some. Many, as I did, wondered how in the world the theater manager and police could not recognize Down Syndrome when they saw it.  DS is one of the more widely recognized disorders. 

    I see it at work too. We have many handicapped people that work in our establishment. They have learned and deemed functional enough to live on their own and hold a job. I think it is great that we don’t discriminate and we employ them. However, I do hear some less than positive remarks about their presence…from other employees. Now, it is aggravating when some of them plow right into me because they are on a mission and just do not process that I am in front of them. There has to be adjustments in conversation, and allot of patience sometimes, and a choice to be understanding. Sometimes it seems that things are said for the purpose of trying to make that person act out or tick. I’m sure it worse other places. It makes me wonder what life will be like for my siblings once they become adults. 

  Now I’m gonna talk about life before actual birth. It is still a hot topic and sensitive issue for many people. I understand that. There has been articles lately about “abortion shaming” and how the conservative news outlets and GOP and church organizations use “shaming” to enslave women. There was an article I read last week encouraging those who have had abortions, and were not sorry for it to proverbially “come out”. It said the only time women who had had abortions seemed to speak out publicly, was when they were sorry or ashamed about their decision. When rape was involved. When they were in their teens. When they had been pressured. It went on to say that many women, were financially fine, and had not been raped. They simply did not want children and never had. They reported feeling like a weight or a tumor had been removed from them after an abortion. A weight or a tumor. I could not find the specific article to quote it here, I thought I had saved it but I didn’t. It isn’t hard to find other comments that are similar though.

   Let me pause here to say, that I am thirty and have never been pregnant. I am not against birth control nor am I someone who takes to the streets holding “baby killer” signs. I have watched the videos of nurses saying they stopped assisting abortions after seeing aborted babies born alive. Or seeing ultra sounds before babies have been sentenced to an abortion. I am a libertarian and I think my generation of women especially have been educated wrongly about life and regard for it, and that an entire other generation will have to be brought up with respect for life…and love and sex and anything else that makes life worth living, before any real change takes place in the realm of Roe Vs. Wade. I’m not into “shaming” women who have had abortions. My issue here is not even with the women or the “choice” as much as it with the definitions of those choices and the arguments I have seen lately.
   When I was younger, there was debate on “when life began”, this is how the courts got deeper into “women” and “womens rights to their own bodies”. If we could legally define when life begins then we could legislate if that life could be terminated. That is not even an argument anymore. This article (another “anti-shame”) article has the headline “No Shame in Aborting Unborn Life”….last two word “unborn life”. The article summarizes that most women have abortions not because they do not care for the unborn baby but because they “care so much”, and it is better for the life to be aborted than to be born to someone “not ready”. It also sates that there are many many children who are subjected to severe abuse and we need not worry for abortion and those who have them, instead we should worry about the ones already here who are skinned, or starved and forced to eat dog food by their evil care takers. Well, yes people who torture children are evil, and they have their place in hell I do believe and I make no bones about saying that. However, as we see those types of stories becoming more and more prominent, does it not also feed the theory that we have no regard for human life? To say that we are better to abort our children, lest they be born to parents not rich enough, not ready enough or too young…essentially saying that we are God and came make that type of call. Are we not buying into the same thoughts that totalitarian states have had (China). Does that type of thinking not then branch into population control and oh yes -further government?
     

  Now that I have haters…on to something even more sinister but from the same seed of disregard and apathy for life in general. Infanticide…or what promoters of making infanticide legal call “post-birth abortion”. Yes -post birth abortion. The child is ALIVE and there is no more dispute about it or when it began…to normal sane people. An MSNBC host Melissa Perry-Smith argued that a baby is not alive until it’s parents “feel” that it is alive. Yes. Fact is stranger than fiction. In fact this sounds like something out of a futuristic dystopia novel…like “The Giver” ( a youth book with profound intellectual thinking points. All ages should read). I had no idea this was even an “idea”. Post birth abortion are being promoted as an idea. It was even surveyed among college students as “fourth trimester abortions” to see if the wording would phase them…they apparently were not smart enough to realize that THERE IS NO FOURTH TRIMESTER THAT IS WHY IT IS CALLED “TRI”. Think this idea is ludicrous and came from “The Onion”…no see here. What amazes me, is that for years it was argued that if we as people could decide when life began and whether it should be born or if that life could be aborted, because of our own rights to our own bodies…then the we would have to reap the consequences of where that “right” and judgement may lead. If we can decide before then can we decide after? As a society, where are we? All of these ideas have been veiled with emotive language for years. For once I would like it to a human argument and not a “women’s argument”. If infanticide is a new idea, that the same circles are pushing for than it was never an argument for women, it was an argument for something deeper and more sinister, even archaic. Women -you were just the pawn.

    There was a post on face book the other day from a women’s lib group. It said in a tongue in cheek way “If men could get pregnant, not only would abortion be legal it would be free and there would be a clinic on every corner”. My question or answer to that is “SO WHAT?” Does that make it any more conscience, moral or right. Feminism was to be equal in voting rights and afforded the same opportunity  in jobs and economy as our male counterparts. We cannot speculate and decide that “because” this is what a man might do…that we would  have to be just as barbaric. Not only that, has it not been argued for a century that “its a mans world” and that we are subject to a “patriarch society”? So going forth with that argument…are we saying that such as we claim man has enslaved us, we should also have the right to abort life as we deem necessary. Such as totalitarian, fascist and communist  factions in history have lost their respect for life, indoctrinated their societies to do the same and tried to extinguish life in different factions, that we should do the same when we decide it is “better and more merciful for the child” or “the child is not well behaved” or…maybe was born with an abnormality. 

  So what? 

  

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