Month: June 2014

Double standard. Alive and well, apparently.

 

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Sorry for not blogging for a while. I was sick and had nothing to say. Well, other than whining a bit.

But one thing that kept me amused for a bit was watching the double standard, alive and well, on social networks.

It all started with me sharing a post on Google Plus about a gorgeous convict who’s mug shot went viral. His name is Jeremy Meeks. Google it if you don’t know.

I was amused at the comments left on the City of Stockton’s Facebook page.  I thought the women were hysterical and funny.

The next thing I know, my character is being questioned because I found a man attractive and sexy. Suddenly there was something wrong with my friends and I who liked looking at his picture. Apparently, we weren’t supposed to like his looks because of his past.

Talk about a double standard! Holy shit! My jaw dropped a few times.

Some men attempted to start a rumor that he was gay. Jealously was rearing its ugly head and little did I know, this would go on for days.

Each slam from a man amused me. My friends and I fought back and only the stupid males tried to persist. They were a great snack for my friends and I.

I see half-naked women in my stream all day long. I am subjected to the crude and juvenile men who spend their days disrespecting women and making derogatory remarks about them. The few times I was stupid enough to say anything, I was called a prude, bitch and jealous.

Now suddenly, the tables are turned and many men don’t like it. Many felt is was their place to criticize me. Quite a few went on and on that he was a convicted felon.

To those men, I say this: WE DON’T FUCKING CARE!

No need to lecture us, or tell us how we should think or be. Save that for your own life. Maybe this is why some of you don’t get laid or can’t get a date. We women are free to do what we want, say what we want and we don’t need anyone’s approval.

I’ve never asked for approval and I never will. If a woman’s admiration for a beautiful man bothers you, then that’s your problem.

We don’t care about his past anymore than you do about a woman’s past when you post her picture. I would never question it. But I do think less of men who do that. Sorry, but you lose my respect when that’s all you seem to do.

And you wonder why some of us don’t want to talk to you. We are tired of the judgment in your eyes and actions.

And for the men who aren’t like that?

I’ve always loved you.

I don’t want to watch you die but I probably will.

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imgae: http://lawc.on.ca/blogmar30/

He’s got you, but if it wasn’t him, it would be somebody else. Just like the one before and most likely, the one after. That’s because you don’t have enough YOU to survive on your own, or so you think.

Every time I see you, I see less of your beauty, grace and intelligence and more of what has hold of you. I don’ t know where your demons come from, but I see them. Mindless little pieces of shit that you listen to.

I see all that is you in a world that denies it, punishes it and makes you want to be someone, anyone, other than yourself. I understand it. I fight it and I want you to fight. Again and again and again.

I have always been here and always will be. The door is never closed. It has no lock. I will never flinch or look away. You may hate whom you’ve become, but I don’t see her. I see you and all that is right and perfect in this world when I look at you.

My greatest fear is that I will get the phone call to ID your body in the morgue. I will go, if I have to. I will take care of those left behind as best as I can and I will continue to love you despite anything you do.

I don’t know any other way to love. I don’t know any other way to be. I will continue to check in on you, pretend I don’t know anything and hold you for as long as I can.

For you see, I still have hope. I know you’ve made some dumb ass choices and feel you can’t undo the trap you made for yourself.

I know that trap is a lie and I know that you can pull yourself out of it if you know there is love on the other side.

You may not make it but you might.

I’ll leave the light on.

 

“But I’m not like that.”

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http://singharoundtheworld.typepad.com/blog/2008/07/human-rights-ra.html

“Well, of course you aren’t. Nobody said you were, you moron. Not everything is about you.”

This will now be my response to people who feel it is their duty and obligation to take what you said happen and negate it to something that it wasn’t.

I am no longer going to explain myself. I’m 59 and tired of doing so. So I won’t.

When someone tells me something, I listen. I hear what they have to say and do my best to understand. It is not my job to tell them how to feel, how to deal with it or do anything other than listen. I do my best to kick my empathy into high-drive.

I would no more tell a black person how all white people aren’t bad if they have suffered at the hands of someone than I would beat an animal and torture it. I would not tell a gay person how to feel when someone has come along and slimed them. I would not explain to someone who has had their human rights violated that “Not all people are like that.”

But for some reason, it seems perfectly acceptable to tell a woman how to feel and to explain to her that “It’s not all that bad.”

Sorry, but is there some valid research that proves my IQ dropped 20 points once my vagina arrived? Did I miss that particular memo?

Nor will I listen to hate speech and try to turn it around. Hate is hate and it doesn’t matter the target. Men, women, white, black or green, I am no longer interested in doing anything other than walking away and finding some other place to get some work done.

I will listen and I expect the same courtesy in return. If that is not going to happen, I’ve nothing left to say. Anything less is a waste of my valuable time.

Worst boss ever

miranda

I’m fortunate that I have a wonderful boss. I hate calling him that since it makes him burst out laughing. I’m not kidding. I refer to him as “My boss” and he usually rolls his eyes, starts laughing and holds his stomach. “Lewis, I don’t think you know what that means. Usually when someone is your boss, you’re supposed to do what they tell you,” he says as he walks out of my office and shakes his head.

Well, I wasn’t exactly hired so I could sit around and look pretty. I was hired to get results. And I do. Every time.

I’m not a fan of groups of people. You put people in a pack and stupidity will happen. I prefer to do my own thing and be left alone, but since no one survives alone, I’m stuck with the rest of you.

I’ve had good bosses and not-so-good bosses. I could easily do 10 blog posts on the various ones. Maybe I will.

But there’s one that always comes to mind.

Her.

The psycho.

The Queen of passive-aggressive.

The woman who was at least 300 pounds overweight and yet continued to squeeze into stretch pants that were way too small. In fact, they were so tight-fitting, that she split the back of them opened and didn’t care. When it was finally pointed out to her, she put duct tape on the tear.

Yes, you read that right. She walked around with duct tape stuck to her ass rather than wear clothes that fit or at least get them stitched up properly. Clothes that she never washed.

She would sabotage people’s work so she could come in later and “fix” it.

She would say one thing to her boss and then tell us the opposite so we would look bad in front of him.

Messages she took never arrived. They all went into some cosmic black hole, never to be heard from again.

If she knew of someone’s private medical situation, she would tell clients about it and always made sure to make it worse than it was.

If she said you could have Monday off, she would be hysterical on Tuesday and tell you she never said that.

Needless to say, she and I did not get along. It took me a little while to start to see a pattern with her. I confronted her one day when I saw her take a file, hide it and then tell her boss that the person was incompetent and should be fired. She denied all of it even though I saw her do it, walked over to where she had hidden the file, pulled it out and put it within 1/2 from her nose.

Her retaliation for what I had done was to go to my boss the next day and tell him I tried to run her over in the parking lot. He didn’t believe her but agreed to talk to me. She then said I had beat her up. In the office the day before. Allegedly.

He just looked at her, confounded by it all. “That can’t be true because if Susan ever lost it and did that, you never would have gotten up.”

That made me smile when he told me about it later.

How did she get away with this for so long?

Because everyone was afraid of her and they needed their jobs. By the time I began to suffer from stomach problems and migraines from the stress, I no longer gave a rats ass about any of it.

The more I called her out on her shit and advised management, the more outrageous her claims about me became. Soon she said I was embezzling all the company funds, stalking her and showing up at her house every night with a gang of thugs, and was responsible for the assassination of JFK.

This was many years before anyone knew about hostile work environments. Prior to all of that, any problems women had in the workplace was their fault or not important or “just women being hysterical again.” You could report these things all day long and not much would change.

But I didn’t care. I was in the process of looking for another job and she had learned to stay far away from me.

I eventually found one and went on with my life. I had no time, patience, or place for such a despicable human being and I was sadden that she was considered one of my species. I have never considered her as anything other than an alien and will never grant that she and I are of the same species.

Years later, I saw her at a grocery store. She looked the same but was even heavier. I was looking at her while she was walking down an aisle, towards me while glancing at the items. She looked up and saw me. A slight scream came from her mouth before she turned around and ran.

Yes, she ran. Down the aisle, out the door and jumped into her car and sped away.

Best moment ever.

 

Happy Birthday to me. Now just kill me.

 

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I’ve been sick with the flu and a nasty cold for almost a week. Hence, no writing or blogging. Tough to do when you can’t sit up for more than a few minutes and looking at the monitor makes your head feel worst. You know you’re sick when you can’t read or watch TV.

My birthday is tomorrow and I admit to feeling just a tad sorry for myself. After days of being sick, but still having to work, and barely able to walk, perhaps I’m entitled. I don’t know. I’m just tired and can’t remember what it’s like to feel well.

A friend has been coming by and helping. I was too ill to go to the store, so he gladly did it for me. Blue is a wonderful nurse but doesn’t quite understand why he shouldn’t lie down on me. I appreciate the gesture.

I hope I’ll be better tomorrow. I don’t have any plans but would like to get back to a normal life. Being sick for a week sucks.

That’s all I got.  This has exhausted me.

Constructive criticism? What a load of crap.

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Image: http://www.theemotionmachine.com/how-to-take-criticism-like-a-champ

Don’t even argue with me on this point. You won’t change my mind. I won’t suddenly “see the light” because you have spoken. There isn’t anything you can say that will make me think “Oh yes! Of course! It’s GOOD to tear people apart!”

Nope. Nada. Zip. Not gonna happen.

Yes, yes, yes I am aware that it is considered perfectly normal and acceptable to give and receive criticism. Yes, I know there are professional critics and all that shit. Yes, I’ve been around people who thought they are doing you a favor by pointing our your flaws, your weaknesses and why you (or your work) isn’t quite good enough.

Uh huh.

Criticism:

1) “The expression of disapproval of someone or something based on perceived faults or mistakes.”

2) “the analysis and judgment of the merits and faults of a literary or artistic work.”

So “constructive criticism” is the ultimate oxymoron that many people have bought into.

Sorry, but I won’t.

You would have to know me to understand why this is an odd statement for me to make, considering my work and volunteer activities. You see, I train people for a living. I rehabilitate convicted felons also, just because I’m weird like that.

My job is to show someone a better way of doing something and then making sure they get the results. That’s right. I have to follow-up with them. I don’t just stand around and lecture just to hear myself talk. Nope. I teach and help them implement.

And guess what is a huge part of that?

Correction. I said correction, not criticism. As different as night and day.

“Oh, look here. Let me show you where you goofed. You see that? OK, so what happened?”

They tell me. Sometimes it’s long-winded, sometimes it’s not.

But the first thing out of their mouths?

Justification. All the reasons why they were right in being wrong. That’s because people are so used to being criticized, they expect it. They wait for it. Well, not on my watch.

I stop them. “Just give me the data. I have no interest in opinions or vague recollections or any of your drama. Just tell me precisely what happened.”

At some point during their tirade, they pop-off with the thing they did wrong.

I point it out.

I make them look at it.

“OK, now read here where you were supposed to show her xxxxxx.”

They nod.

“And instead of showing it to her, you explained it, didn’t you?”

Head down. Mumbling “Yes, Susan, I did but…”

“Stop talking. You’re making this worse for yourself. What did I tell you to do?”

Sigh. “You said to have her read this.”

“Yep but instead you talked about it, right?”

“Right.”

OK, now we’re onto something, I think. Here we go. “Did it work?” (I already know the answer, of course).

“No, it didn’t.”

“No it didn’t. You goofed and here’s what you should do…”

I didn’t criticize. I didn’t harp or nag. I just went over the material again, cleared up their confusions and questions and sent them back out to do it again CORRECTLY.

If I wanted to criticize, I would have put them down, been exasperated with them, rolled my eyes and done a million of other things, all well justified in my head BECAUSE I’M THE EXPERT, DAMN IT!

Tearing someone down does no good. Hold them accountable and responsible does but only if you help them along the way, show them how to do it, have faith in them and be willing for them to screw it all up.

You learn things by doing them over and over, making mistakes, getting back up and trying it again. You learn if you have a good teacher who guides you but lets you figure things out for yourself.

I want independent thinkers and doers around me.

I don’t want sheep.

I want people that want to learn, to create, to make things better for themselves and others. I want people that are willing to make mistakes and come back and learn from them.

I’ve never really learned anything from a book. Not truly learned.

I learned from falling down, over and over, and having a helping hand guide me and let me make mistakes. I learned from smacking my head against a wall to not do that.

No one learns from advice.

We learn from doing and making our own observations, forming our own truths and carrying on.

We don’t learn because someone feels it’s their duty to put us down or tear us apart.

There will always be critics. How you deal with them is up to you. But we wary of them. I doubt they have your best interest at heart. There is usually a hidden agenda.

Either show me a better way or stand down.

Sugar and I – it’s complicated.

sugarWaking-up with a splitting headache is not the best way to begin the day.

Nor is it when you can’t feel your legs  because your 70 pound pit bull has been lying across them for the last few hours.

There’s always that 1/2 a second when I’m convinced that I’ve had a stroke because I can’t move. This is a sensitive topic for me, this whole stroke thing. Lost a few family members over the years and I refuse to get into all the drama of it.

Suffice to say, there’s a reason that thought is one of the first ones I have when Blue has decided to camp out on my legs all night.

But the headache was from the sugar the night before. I know better. I know that I will feel like crap in the morning and be snappy.

I know that it will take additional eye cream to soothe the puffiness, extra water in addition to the 1.5 liters I drink everyday and an extra long walk with Blue to burn off the damage I did.

Why do I do it?

Because I want to.

Then I spent the day, craving more sugar, thinking about sugar and rubbing my eyes because of the slight and annoying headache sitting right behind them.

I’m an addict.

I gave up cigarettes easy enough. Yes, there were a few intense moments, but for the most part I haven’t really missed them. Slipped once and then went through the 3-day detox again. That wasn’t hard as most of it is mental for me. I love smoking. But just because I love something (or someone), that’s not relevant to it being good for me.

But sugar?

I swear PMS doesn’t stop just because I’m going through menopause. In fact, I think it’s a cruel joke that is played on women.

Just one more thing to mess with us emotionally, physically and mentally.

“Hi there! I’m menopause and I’m so happy to finally meet you! Now, while you’re sleeping, I shall interrupt that to give you night sweats. Then you’ll start freezing. I’ll do that to you all night. I’ll also add bloating and a craving for sugar. Oh! I also went through all your clothes and made them a size smaller. Have fun. Love you! Mean it!”

I am eying the chocolate chip cookies a friend brought over yesterday. He is a cold and heartless bastard.

Anyone got milk?

 

 

Celebration of life

I just attended my 2nd memorial service in 3 weeks. Another friend died of cancer. A 3rd one is fast approaching her death.

Both of them were the most amazing women I had the honor and pleasure of working with. Bright, loving, kick ass and wonderful mothers and wives.

Once again I sat in a room filled to the brim. Each time there were least 500 people in attendance. There was much laughter, some tears, music and poetry. Today I sat and listened and watched. I felt calm and at peace for we were there to celebrate another life once more.

I’ll not say anything about them individually as that is not the purpose of this post. All has been said to them and to ourselves over the last few months. Cycles were completed, casseroles were made, homes were cleaned, and love was shown and expressed throughout the process of their deaths. Both of them planned out their memorial service and made sure every small detail was done. Nothing was left overlooked and though their bodies had died, you could still feel their presence.

Today I sat and thought about my own death. Not in a morbid way or out of fear. I wondered what would be said about me. I wondered without the intent of answering the question. I wondered as I skimmed through my life. At times I smiled at a memory. Others times I winced but there was one common denominator in each and every memory.

Love. Either an abundance or lack of it. Times when my life and soul was filled with it and times where it felt there was none.

We often wonder what people will say about us when we are gone. That’s a good question.

But I think the real question is “What would I say about me?”

What would you say about you?