Category Archives: Uncategorized

yes, actually I am judging you.

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how could you not tip this man?

There is a speech that Tim Minchin recently gave that I loved. He says many wise and wonderful things and if you want to hear the whole thing click here. Near the end he says “I don’t care if you’re the most powerful cat in the room; I will judge you by how you treat the least powerful.” Prior to this he talked about how someone treats their waitress is a really good indicator of their character.

So, judging. Yep. I judge people, every single day.

If you order dessert and then leave an shitty tip, I will judge you. I will judge you even if you don’t order dessert and skip straight to stiffing the waitress. I will judge you if you cut in line, or are rude to the barista.

If you go to an event, like a Renaissance Fair, and you don’t put any money in the performers various hats, consider yourself judged. If you are well of financially, don’t put any money in the performers hat, and then make stupid and tasteless remarks about spare change I will judge you a LOT – and since this is actually happened to me this summer, I will add, that it will permanently colour my view of you.

If you are mean to animals, give your baby Pepsi in a bottle, make racist or sexist jokes, bully anyone for any reason, if you are unkind to those who have less power than you – I AM judging you.

You know what I’m not judging? I’m not judging your gender, your sexual orientation, race, age, body size, or political leanings, I honestly don’t care if you’re liberal or republican, pro-life, pro-choice, theistic, non-theistic, I don’t give a single fuck. I don’t care if you have money, or if you don’t. What kind of car you drive, the place you live, or what you choose to clothe yourself in, this doesn’t matter.

Assholes come in straight, gay, black, white, old, young, fat, thin, liberals, and republicans.

What I do care about is how you treat those who have no power over you, waitresses, baristas, Buskers, pets, children. How you treat those people says more about your character than what you drive, who you love, the colour of your skin or what political party you support.

If you stiff your waitress, are rude to the person making you coffee, or obnoxiously ignore Ren Fair performers you’re an ass, period.  Consider yourself judged.

thankful

printed

Last weekend – if you’re Canadian – was Thanksgiving. We did all the usual things, making stupid amounts of food, eating stupid amounts of food, talking and laughing while eating the stupid amounts of food,  and then digesting it for hours (days) afterwards. There was much talk and laughter during dinner. Both my daughters had their boyfriends over and also some extra friends. We had a wonderful time.

No one mentioned Graham.

Actually I suspect everyone was mildly grateful for the reprieve. To be honest the holiday was easier without him. There was no constant redirecting, or monitoring  or having to keep track of the 6 foot toddler. It was easier in every possible way.

Except that it wasn’t.

Graham was on his own for Thanksgiving. He’s been on his own since he relapsed shortly after his sister came home from school for the weekend. He managed 8 days living with us before the expectations he had agreed to became too much. We actually had only about 2 good days with him before old habits started sneaking back.

He burned his bridges with the Marines and now has no life ‘plan’. He’s not in school, doesn’t work, and is homeless, not the sort of future you envision when raising your little boy. I look back over the last 18 years and wonder what I could have done differently, done better, not done, done more of, and my answer is it doesn’t matter. I did try everything thing I could think of to help him. He had mentors, role models, martial arts, fine arts, music, social workers, counselors, psychologists, psychiatrists, support groups, summer camps, youth groups, retreats, sweat lodges, and on and on. He had more support and resources in the last 6 years than most people get in their lifetime. Did it make any difference? Who knows? He’s still alive, and maybe some seeds were planted that may grow one day. Maybe, or maybe not. I suppose what is important is that we always tried, that we didn’t give up.

Except it feels like giving up right now.

Still, you have to do you best with what you are given. I have two daughters that deserve my love and support, and my time. I have had my own life on hold for more years than I care to admit, and it’s time to put some time and some love into myself, otherwise I will come out of this hollow with no idea who I was anymore. I deserve more than that. My daughters deserve more than that. My son needs to know what being a whole person looks like, what taking care of yourself and others looks like. One day hopefully he may even be able to take care of himself and have enough left to care for others. One day, maybe.

For now I concentrate on what and who is important. On the people I love and nurture and on those who have loved and nurtured me. I don’t have time for anything else. Living through difficult times provides a clarity that might not have been apparent otherwise. I have a limited amount of time and tolerance for bullshit or superficiality. I am begining to see my own worth and the value of real friends. The rest, is dross….

“What thou lovest well remains, the rest is dross
What thou lov’st well shall not be reft from thee
What thou lov’st well is thy true heritage…”

– Ezra Pound, The Pisan Cantos

Gilmour Girls: A Reading List for David Gilmour

Wonderful reading list! Enjoy it David Gilmour.

The Belle Jar

This list is not as diverse as I wish it could be. It’s still very white, and there isn’t a super great representation of queer and trans* folk. It sort of ended up being both a reading list for David Gilmour and a list of my favourite books by women. Writing this has been a great exercise for me, and has illustrated pretty clearly that I need to expand my own reading repertoire – I do love women writers, but I still tend to favour white, cis-gender women. Helloooooo to my own cultural bias.

I didn’t include any Alice Munro or Virginia Woolf because Gilmour says that he likes both of those authors, and I don’t have multiple books by the same author. Those were some rules that I arbitrarily made up for myself.

Please feel free to add to this list or to fangirl with me over how much…

View original post 1,257 more words

Gilmour Girls: A Reading List for David Gilmour

Wonderful reading list! Enjoy it David Gilmour.

The Belle Jar

This list is not as diverse as I wish it could be. It’s still very white, and there isn’t a super great representation of queer and trans* folk. It sort of ended up being both a reading list for David Gilmour and a list of my favourite books by women. Writing this has been a great exercise for me, and has illustrated pretty clearly that I need to expand my own reading repertoire – I do love women writers, but I still tend to favour white, cis-gender women. Helloooooo to my own cultural bias.

I didn’t include any Alice Munro or Virginia Woolf because Gilmour says that he likes both of those authors, and I don’t have multiple books by the same author. Those were some rules that I arbitrarily made up for myself.

Please feel free to add to this list or to fangirl with me over how much…

View original post 1,257 more words

Dear America,

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Dear America,

We need to talk. 

I love you, I really do, and you’re really, really great at lots of stuff, BUT, you’re not the be all and the end all, really. I mean do you ever just listen to yourself? Sit back and pay attention to the things you say?? If the world were one house, you’d be the teenager with all the latest toys who sits in his room playing video games, eating junk food and tossing the wrappers out in the hall for the rest of us to pick up. When you come out of your room to look around you roll your eyes at the rest of us because, God! we’re just so lame, and don’t we understand anything?? You know, we’re not. The world is actually full of all sorts of interesting people who do things differently from you, and are still every bit as lovable as you are. You could maybe turn off Fox news and tune in to the BBC  and you might find out what is actually happening on the rest of the planet, and maybe even realize that as charming as you are, you are not the center of this world we live on.

A few other things.

It’s a very good idea to take care of people when they’re sick, honestly, it’s best for everyone involved. All the rest of the developed world does it, and, so far, no one  has been sucked into a Godless black hole because of it.  It shows that you value people over money and corporations (such has pharmaceutical companies…), and for the kicker, taking care of the sick is a very Christain thing to do (WWJD? take care of the sick I think).

And while you’re at it you might try giving parents paid maternity/paternity leave, Crazy I know, but going back to work after just a few weeks after a child is born is nuts. Going back to work and having to leave brand new babies with underpaid childcare workers, is a terrible thing to do. Listen, you might not have noticed, but everyone else does let parents enjoy paid time off after a birth to bond with and care for their child, and no one’s economy has collapsed.  You go on and on about being Pro-Life, but really, aren’t you just Pro-Birth? Because after that, parents and babies are on their own. 

Why do spend so much of your time arguing about what a woman’s health choices? Why not leave that up to the trained medical professionals and the patients that they treat? Really, what does it have to do with you? What does your faith have to with another person’s medical decisions?

Also, try not to put so many people in jail. You know you incarcerate more people that any other developed nation. More than Russia. More than Europe, Canada, Australia, and Japan combined. Think about that. Could it be, maybe, that you could work out a better system?

It seems just a little hypocritical that you judge other countries so harshly, when you won’t provide health care for your citizens, paid maternity leave for families, and incarcerate so many of your own citizens. That you have billions to spend on your military and not enough to money to provide health care, or to properly fund schools. Just a bit of the pot calling the kettle black perhaps?

Just to let you know…. It’s not always about the money. Yes, I realize some of you have quite a lot of it, but I don’t think this entitles you to better health care, or political power. 

What’s with the high fructose corn syrup in everything? You’re carrying a few extra pounds there America, and I think corn syrup in everything from bread to pasta sauce might have something to do with it. Perhaps the enormous portions of food and soft drinks that you love might be contributing to this as well. Do you know that some countries actually make unhealthy food MORE expensive than healthy food? Why do you do the opposite? Cheap junk food in American is just making y’all fat is all I’m saying.

Why are you so darn uppity about ‘Christian’ values? Aren’t people suppose to have religious freedom in America? Aren’t you yourself critical of Theocracy in other nations?? Honestly, why do you fuss so much about other people’s values? And while you’re at it, you might want to actually read more of the bible than the three or four quotes that suit your purpose. Take a look at the parts where Jesus talks about love and compassion and actually taking care of people. He actually said that, look it up.

While I’m at it, homosexuality. Just get over it, and stop fantasizing about what consenting adults do in private. At least stop talking on and on and on about it. Honestly, one might think that you’re just a too little obsessed with other people’s private lives.

One last thing, you might want to ease up on how much time you spend watching reality television and millionaire athletes. Is this the best use of your time? Are teenage moms, wealthy housewives, 20-something people from New Jersey really that interesting?? Just think about it. 

Anyhow, I do love you America, and you do have many wonderful qualities. Maybe just take yourself a little less seriously sometimes?? and get rid of that corn syrup, it’s going to kill you! 

 

Love,

me

“Oh no, I’ve said too much…. I’ve said enough”

ImageSo. I’m a bit overwhelmed. 

I’m in that hamster wheel section of my brain where the thoughts spin faster and faster and get crazier and crazier. Not fun.

This is what’s spinning around:

  1. I need to move on from where I am now – career, relationship, life…
  2. I should get divorced. I WANT to get divorced. I can’t afford to get divorced.
  3. I need to get a job that pays me enough to live on, has benefits, and sick days. (divorce = no health care)
  4. I was trained as a nurse in Canada, but have to back to school to do that here.
  5. I need to go back to school – see 4.
  6. I need money to go back to school – see 1,2 & 4.
  7. I have a daughter in University.
  8. She needs money to go to school. 
  9. I need to borrow money – see 5 & 7.
  10. I already owe money – see 5,6,7, & 8.
  11. Going back to nursing would let me live on my own – see 2.
  12. I need health care – see 2 & 3.
  13. My son is making life very hard, mine and his own.
  14. I can create. I can write, I can’t get organized, display or sell my work.
  15. My office is an unorganized disaster that keeps me from getting anything constructive done.
  16. I’m tired. see all of the above.
  17. I need to get organized – see all of the above.
  18. I have no idea where to start or what to do next – ditto.
  19. I feel badly that everyone seems to handle their lives better than I do.
  20. Other people have been divorced and remarried since I got separated.
  21. Other people have kids in university and do not turn themselves inside out trying to pay for it and organize it.
  22. Other people are in school themselves and have managed to pay for it, and organize themselves.
  23. Some other people are in school and have kids in school.
  24. Other people get organized and display and sell their art/writing/photography.
  25. Thinking about other people doing everything better is making me nuts.
  26.  I need to see a neurologist. 
  27. My son ate up almost all of our new and unimpressive health insurance – see 13.
  28. I want to take yoga teacher training, it will cost money – see 1, 5 & 10.
  29. I don’t know if it’s just stress making my head hurt – see 13, 16, 25 & 26.
  30. I don’t like getting head aches because they have already caused permanent brain damage and I’d like to keep what marbles I have left – see 26.
  31. I don’t think I have enough marbles left to go back to school – see 1,3,4,5,6……

 

Right. Well there you have it. Take all of those, spin them faster and faster and that would be my brain right now. No wonder I have a headache.

 

 

Deep thoughts my dog never had

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I’ve been very itchy and mom looked at my ears and said something about little bastards. Then she went away,  and when she came back she sprayed me with something that smelled like my bed, she called it cedar.  I didn’t know what to do with myself.  It felt tingly and smelled too much, so I went in the yard and rolled a lot in the grass,  and then ran very fast. Mom gave me a treat when I came back in, and now I’m not itchy anymore.  Not being itchy is my favourite.

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why not to boycott

Anyone decided to boycott Barilla today? If you been on Facebook, you may have seen any number of calls to boycott the pasta company based on a statement from their chairman Guido Barilla.
 
I may regret this, but I think the media – social and otherwise – is making a bigger deal out of what he said that is actually warranted. What he said was related to a question about a particular advert, specifically,
 
“For us the concept of the sacred family remains one of the basic values of the company,” he told Italian radio on Wednesday evening. “I would not do it but not out of a lack of respect for homosexuals who have the right to do what they want without bothering others … [but] I don’t see things like they do and I think the family that we speak to is a classic family.” 
Right, I don’t agree with him, and I might want to spend my money elsewhere, but to be responsible, I should check that the companies I buy from match all my values, about people, the environment, animal welfare etc etc….
 
Are you posting your support of the boycott of  Barilla on your Facebook page from your iPhone? Because Facebook has been criticized for various issues, including online privacy and hate speech. Apple has been criticized for unethical business practices, including child labour.  Been shopping in Walmart lately? Don’t tell me you have anything that Nestles or Kraft produces. Do you know where your coffee was made, who picked it and if they were compensated fairly? The clothes you are wearing right now, are you sure nothing came from workers who were not paid a living wage, or worse children?

Want to know who else you should be boycotting? Here’s a list of just 30, been to any of them lately? 

Advance Auto Parts 
AES Corp. 
AFLAC 
Allergan (Manufacturer of Botox)
AmerisourceBergen (Owner of Good Neighbor Pharmacies and Pennsylvania’s largest company by revenue) 
AutoZone 
Bed Bath & Beyond 
Berkshire Hathaway (Parent company of Geico, Dairy Queen, Fruit of the Loom) 
Big Lots 
BJ’s Wholesale 
Dish Network 
Dole Foods 
Dollar General
Dollar Tree 
Exxon Mobil
Goodyear Tires 
Hess 
Host Hotels & Resorts (Includes Four Seasons and Marriott hotels) 
Kohl’s 
Liberty Mutual 
Lowe’s Companies Inc. 
News Corporation (Wall Street Journal, Fox News, 20th Century Fox) 
Phillip Morris
RadioShack 
Ross Stores 
Smithfield Foods
Sunoco 
SYSCO 
Tyson Foods 
Verizon Inc. 

What I’m saying is don’t be lazy. Don’t jump on the boycott wagon because all your Facebook friends have decided to change pasta brands. To boycott a company based on a single statement, and not completely examine all your purchasing would be irresponsible.

just sayin’