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Cats love to explore new objects

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Considering my life, it’s more than likely I will end up an old spinster, unable to find a husband. To fill that void, I would probably turn to filling it with cats. So, faithful people who read my blog, I am giving you a heads up. I love cats. I can talk about cats all day without getting tired. I know I could drive just about anyone up the wall with endless stories about felines. I have NO social life, and since I can’t seem to be able to find people who can bear to be around me for extended perionds of time, I might as well lavish that attention on cats. I treat the kitties well, they give me love in return. Seems a pretty fair deal to me. Why bother trying to impress self-centered, shallow humans who only care about their egos and desires when you can spoil a cat rotten and be loved back for it?

I talk to cats, have one-sided conversations with them, because it amuses me, or I will meow back if they’re a particularly vocal creature. I play with them, get right down on the floor and roll around, not caring if I look like a complete moron to other people. I try to find things they’re interested in, or just simply hang out with them.

Cats are not as cold-hearted as some people think. A mean cat is an abused cat, one not shown love, respect, kindness or sympathy. Treat a cat (or ANY animal, for that matter), with a good heart and you have formed a bond that transcends everything. I had a cat for 13 years, and he was one of the most gentle, good-natured cats I’ve ever known. He wasn’t some fancy pedigree feline, just your average tabby cat. What made Dart the way he was, was HOW he was treated. I spoiled him, and my dad did too. I never showed any kind of violence toward him, never hurt him out of spite, never mistreated him. I talked to him as if he were a person, because I felt in some fashion he did understand me. I showed him love through brushing him, which he adored, gave him treats, played with him when he was frisky. He kept me company at night, and knew, just knew, when I was having trouble sleeping. Dart would begin purring like a motor and the sound would automatically soothe me back to sleep. He’d hang out in my room, even when I wasn’t there at times because I think he felt my room was a safe place for him. He wouldn’t mind when I’d curl up on the bed with him and hold him close.

I say hello to stray cats, or neighbor’s cats if I’m out. I make friends with them, even some whose owners say they’re a one-person cat. I have been adopted by cats when visiting people who own them, giving their special feline treatment to someone outside of their human family. My family  thinks I have a certain talent for this sort of thing, being able to befriend animals. I don’t know what it is; it just exists. Maybe they just know I’m someone they can trust. I wish human beings could do that with me. Most of society will just ignore me or treat me like crap. Not everyone, but I’d say most would.

And yes, I have been known to wear cat-themed clothing. I don’t care what others think, because it makes ME happy. I’m always on the lookout for a new cat shirt, or article of fashion that features cats. Most of what I’ve found is pretty obnoxious, though. I’m very picky in that way. I’m a crazy cat lady with a high sense of fashion, so if I’m going to wear it, it has to be good. I have a fleece winter hat with cat ears I still wear, because I love it. I have cat t-shirts I wear on a fairly regular basis in the summertime. I wear cat earrings and rings, because I like them.

Have I driven you thoroughly nuts yet about felines? I mean, I did warn you I was going to ramble long and loud about cats, so don’t get upset that you decided to read this. Why do I love them so much? I think it’s because we humans have made the conscious choice to place a living creature under our care, to be completely responsible for their well-being, their life, their loves, their socialization. If you can show that level of devotion to an animal, it is entirely possible to extend it to people, and maybe those people will share it with you in return.


English: Logo of Muse in SVG Español: Logo de ...

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Music has its uses for me. Mainly as therapy, or enjoyment. Sometimes when I’m at my worst, it’s music that helps me cope with the stress and emotional overload. Sometimes I just don’t know how to describe my feelings, and a song often fits better than anything I could say.

If someone were to ask me what I’m like, I’d probably offer them a piece of music instead, being the socially-awkward freak that I am. I could probably use a song from my favorite band, Muse, to explain how I feel half the time, since a lot of the lyrics suit my emotional states. For example, the song ‘Hysteria‘ by Muse is a good way to describe the way I’ve been feeling lately.  Okay, their earlier stuff, because of the angst. Or I just came across a song called ‘I Don’t Speak Human’ by a group called Omnia that pretty much nails how I feel compared to everyone else. I’ll let you do the homework and find out for yourself, okay? I rather like them, it should be noted.

Sometimes it’s the sounds used, or the arrangements in the song that resonate in me a lot. It may be the melody, or even the key it’s in that just clicks with me. Music is emotions given voice. Sometimes all I want to hear is the music and not have anything from the outside world bother me, because I just can’t stand it anymore.

Okay, here’s another example. Muse (and be warned, I’m going to talk about them a LOT here, because I adore them so) has a song called ‘Con-science’. The play on words is deliberate, but it’s the whole sound, the whole effect of the song that makes this kind of connection deep inside me. It builds, swells into this tsunami of sound that will just come down on you like a tidal wave. And that’s the intention; I visualize my music as well as listen to it. I let it create scenarios in my head while I listen, which is how I try to separate myself from reality when I’m overstressed. It’s my solace and life preserver at times, I believe. Their music has just made this core-deep bond inside me, and it may come off ridiculous for some, but that’s how it is for me. (Is this also a sign of hard-core fandom? Perhaps one could enlighten me…)

I’m admittedly a weirdo, the way I go about things, but sometimes it’s  done out of a desire to protect myself. I use music to block out the ugliness of the world, and sometimes to block out my problems. When I’m with my music, I’m safe. It’s not a perfect system, and needs refining, but it’s one thing that has kept me from going completely insane. I don’t expect anyone to truly understand me, but I felt I needed to explain some of my habits.

Smoking irritates me


I took this photograph.

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If you want a quick way of turning me off completely, just light one up in my presence. I may actually puke in reaction. I don’t hate the person; it’s the habit that I hate. I just find the sight of smoke oozing out of a person’s mouth and nostrils so utterly revolting it triggers my gag reflex. Dragons I can understand, because some of them evidently breathe fire, but humans….not something I really am accustomed to seeing.

Thanks to my lovely deformed nasal passages, I have a great deal of difficulty breathing as it is, and when I inevitably have to pass through a gauntlet of smokers right outside the doors to buildings (yeah it’s supposed to be enforced, but don’t you dare say that to a smoker. Last time I did politely, the person threatened to beat the crap out of me, despite my streaming eyes and gasping for breath). I gave up on that effort. Also because of my condition, it’s permanently ruined my sense of smell and taste. I can taste the smoke, though, and it makes me ill. This nasty, metallic-rancid flavor that I can’t get rid of for hours, no matter what I eat or drink to eliminate it. Note to guys: don’t ever smoke if you wish to date me, because as soon as I see you with a cancer-stick hanging from your slack lips, I’m splitting. Not to mention I consider it a major flaw when it comes to a potential romantic interest. I am not going to make out with an overflowing wet ashtray, which is how I picture what it must be like to kiss a smoker. Ugh. Despite my ravaged nose, I am able to detect very strong odors, and some  people think they can disguise it by chugging mouthwash, breath mints, or wearing lots of perfume to disguise the stink of their cigarettes.

From the start, I just never understood what was so beautiful and attractive about smoking. Maybe for some it made them look bold, or tough, or dangerous, but for me, it just made me ill. I got mocked in college because I didn’t drink, smoke, or do drugs–I was the freak in their eyes, and I remained defiant in that stance.

It’s a costly habit too, and I just cannot fathom how people who are extremely low income just HAVE to have their cancer sticks. They could go without nutritious food, or pay their bills, but they have to have their cigarettes above all else. Why should I feel pity for them? They could be saving so much if they gave up the habit (which I know is VERY hard to break), but they’d rather go broke than give up their habit. I just don’t get it. I’ve seen people’s teeth get all nasty, yellowish-orange, with a grey tinge and think it’s so gross. Some have the money to get their teeth capped, to hide the rot, but they still look fake.

I know I’m making people angry with my opinions, but I feel I’m entitled to voice them, since I also breathe the same air as them. I have acquaintances who do smoke, nearly all my coworkers do, but they also have enough conscience to not do it in my face, or if I’m outside with them, they make sure they’re downwind of me. I’ve developed allergies recently too, and smoke is one thing that sets me off violently.

When I said smoking is an unattractive habit, it’s not just to the person, but the environment they inhabit. I see butts all over the entranceways to buildings, on the ground, all over the beach, in parks. I see them flicking their butts out of car windows (some inconsiderate moron used my first car’s hood as an ashtray once—I would’ve pulped the guy if I’d caught him), puffing away with the windows cracked a fraction with kids in the car. I see mammas sucking away on their ciggies while bottle-feeding their babies and the babies are coughing up a storm trying to feed. Heaven forbid you tell them to stop when the kid is clearly suffering from all that exposure to cigarettes.

Pets suffer too, from the effects of smoking. I briefly shadowed at a local vet clinic and met a very unhappy cat with the unfortunate name of Lucky. Lucky was suffering from chronic lung inflammation and asthma, not to mention the poor fellow was obese. His lung problems were the result of his owners smoking like out of control locomotives, and the vet warned them to improve Lucky’s environment or he’d likely die. Just listening to this poor cat wheezing and laboring for every breath was a physical pain for me. His owners didn’t believe their smoking was killing him. Animals are so much more susceptible to the chemicals from cigarettes than people, because they’re a lot smaller than we are and it impacts their systems at a greater scale due to their size. Most people never give this any thought, but I do.

Why does this habit bother me so much? My grandfather, who died last year, died from a combination of exposure to asbestos and being a smoker for over half his life. I saw him a week before he passed, and he could barely breathe on his own. Ultimately, it’s up to each person–if they want to smoke, I’m not going to stop them. They’re going to do it regardless of what I do, or to simply spite me. I’d just like people to have a little more consideration of the world around them before they add to it, for better or worse.

Emotional survival skills


I have a problem that I really need a lot of advice to help me deal with it. Here’s my problem: I have a great deal of difficulty handling criticism.  There’s not a doubt that most people have a lot of difficulty with this same issue, but this is me and my problem. I have a very hard time not only trying to accept criticism, which I take very personally, but how to accept positive criticism. I think it’s a matter of seeing both in the same light, which is negative. My typical reaction is to take any kind of criticism as an indictment on my character, and that there’s no way for me to counter it. I get demoralized, I get very upset, and I then am afraid to continue to do anything for fear of failure. As soon as I get singled out for a mistake, I take it to heart and end up snowballing it into my whole life. A clinically aloof part of me realizes this is very distorted thinking, that it’s unrealistic and irrational, but my emotionally sensitive part seems to overrule any logical thought pattern. I seem to put my emotions over rationality and this is where my problems come from. Here’s another aspect to all of this. I have abysmal self-esteem. I don’t view myself in very kind terms, and I’m the first in line to beat myself up over something. I’m always apologizing for whatever I say, expecting to offend everyone for simple as opening my mouth to speak. I am very much my own worst enemy in practically everything, and it’s a not a good place to be. For that matter, it’s not emotionally healthy to live like this, because of the corrosive negativity of the way I treat myself. It’s not a good way to live, frankly.

I don’t know how to handle this. I’m not sure what I should be doing to counter the negative thought processes, because I’ve never really even made any attempts to do so. How do I begin to change my behavior when it comes to someone offering criticism, even if done in a beneficial manner? I think it’s more than just ‘well just stop thinking that way’. This is a learned behavior for me, so it’s a matter of reprogramming my thoughts, if you will.

In regards to positive steps forward, the obvious one is that I realize my actions are irrational. I’ve been able to see that the way I’m thinking doesn’t mesh with the situation, so now comes how to fix that matter. The old bitter standard of ‘suck it up and get over it’ I think is incredibly antiquated and unhelpful. It doesn’t give you any sort of instruction for how to deal with a situation. It’s inflexible and unforgiving, making no distinction of circumstance.

This isn’t a matter of babying someone, or coddling, or lowering standards. For some people, it’s very hard to deal with others because of certain life experiences. When someone has spent a good portion of their life feeling they are worthless, depressed, being emotionally abused, anything one could say could be taken in the wrong way. In my own experience, I saw myself as incompetent, stupid, ugly and useless. I really thought I was a dumb, pathetic creature that was past hope of any recovery. It’s taken me a long time to see this is wrong thinking, but I am now at a stage where I can see it for myself. It’s nowhere near a perfect process, but I now need to find ways of improving my life, because I have to. I can’t go through the rest of my life afraid of everything. How do you cope with these sorts of feelings? Do you have any ideas or advice that might be helpful for someone like me? What would you do if you were in my place, things you might do differently. As the title says, it’s emotional survival skills that I need to develop in order to keep going in this crazy world. I have no intentions of caving in to my nightmares. I mean to fight.

 


Don’t suppose you recall that last entry I made on steampunk, do you? Time to heave a great sigh and try to overcome my enormous chagrin. I was royally fooled, people. Clearly, the site was successful in its goal to trick people that it was serious. I got owned. It’s a fake conservative site!  The .org bit really got me, because it seemed so genuine.

When I began to think of how the author was so rude and vulgar in his comment responses, that should’ve tipped me off that it may have not been serious. There was also the little feature where you could vote up or down on each individual comment, which was ‘praise or condemn’. Another obvious clue which I did not take into consideration. I just go so wound up in my indignation (I figure I’m proving some right-winger true that liberals get worked up over social issues) that I fired off my previous blog without really doing some serious digging first.

I feel I should apologize to my readers, because I feel I’ve misled them. It wasn’t intentional, just some truly careless mistakes on my part and I have not even begun to really tear into myself for my stupidity. I can’t even begin to express how embarrassed and mortified I am for writing that previous entry, full of righteous indignation, only to be made out to be a complete moron for falling for such a cleverly conceived faux-conservative site.

I’ve been debating whether to delete that entry, because of its obvious errors, but then no one would be able to understand what I got so enraged about. So I will leave it as is, as an example of my foolishness.

As I’ve mentioned in the past, I am not a professional writer. I doubt any respected online journal would ever hire a rank amateur such as myself to write for them, especially someone with only an Associate’s Degree to her name and no journalistic credentials whatsoever. I write primarily for my own enjoyment, and hopefully the pleasure of others who can bear to read what I’ve written.

I will do the best I can to make up for this lapse in judgement, and I hope you will not give up on this amateur blogger. I look forward so much to the responses, believe me.


Twitter logo initial

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Much as I find it very handy for announcing my latest WordPress blogs, lately it’s been annoying the daylights out of me. It has been THREE days and I cannot seem to access my own Twitter account! I have a shortcut link to it, and whenever I’ve tried to check out the latest feed, I get a blank screen.

This is part of my  problem. I am not a computer genius, so I have absolutely no clue how to fix this, and it’s irritating me immensely. I mean, I don’t have scads of followers. I have a measly 68 people following me. I’m following almost 180. I’m not famous (only in my imagination), but that’s okay. I’d rather have people following me who are actually interested in what I like to ramble on about, rather than just following me because it’s ‘cool’.

All I want to know is what the heck is going on. Has something happened to Twitter that I don’t know about? I don’t think my computer can get viruses (it’s a Mac). It could be because it’s also an old and senile computer. I see Twitter as a means of social networking; I haven’t mastered every little trick there is. I can’t even figure out how to create links on it. My one guilty pleasure on Twitter though, has to be changing my screen backgrounds via their Themeleon link. I’ve gotten so hooked on it that I’ve been tinkering with my profile at least once or twice a week, looking for cool patterns. I typically will find something and then tweak the color scheme, mixing and matching colors. Heck, if I could have a career doing this, I’d be in heaven. Ugh, only 3 days and I’m suffering from Twitter withdrawl. It’s pretty sad, isn’t it?

It makes me wonder though if anyone else has had this problem accessing Twitter lately, not being able to even see your own profile. I even Googled my own and tried to access it. Still came up with a blank screen, even though Twitter showed up in the search bar.

This is so frustrating. I’m as irate as those Angry Birds I see all over the place. If I find out that someone has hacked into my account, I’m going to find them and do what aggressive birds sometimes do: crap on them to show my indignation. I want my Twitter back so I can talk to my peeps!


Anillos de Matrimonio, Aros de Matrimonio

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Took them long enough, thanks to the bass-ackwards politicians trying to drag this issue out until it died. Religious exemptions, my butt. That was a blatant delaying scheme and everyone with a brain should’ve seen that.

There has been a tired, done to death spiel the far right keeps trotting out to block this kind of legislation and I am getting fed up with the public being so blindly ignorant of it. The far right keeps making the claim that legalizing same-sex marriage will lead to all sorts of grossly indecent acts, that gays will want to marry animals, or marry children, or engage in incest, and it’s a complete LIE. All they want is to marry their PARTNER, a fellow HUMAN BEING. They have no interest in getting married in a church that hates them; they want the same legal rights as every straight couple in this nation. Religion has no place in this, and they have NO right to force their ways on others who have absolutely no connection to that faith. Marriage licenses are issued by city hall, NOT a church, or a temple, or a mosque. It is a legal document, not a religious one, and the majority of the American people are so stupid they can’t be bothered to learn the difference.

Yes, I’m disgusted with a portion of the people in this country, because they’re not interested in educating themselves about the laws that make up this nation. They’d rather rely on quick sound bites from political or religious ideologues to inform themselves than to actually USE the brain in their skulls.

I am proud to be a New Yorker, born and raised in this state. I could not imagine the tremendous shame I would feel if my state elected officials decided that certain New Yorkers were unworthy of full legal rights as their fellow New Yorkers. Gays and lesbians are just as human as you or I, and to think that there are people still who see them as less than human makes me physically ill.

What makes me shake my head in wonder is that it was only a mere 40-odd years ago interracial marriage was declared legal. Forty years is a drop in the bucket when you think about it. Forty years ago, some people thought those with a different skin color were less than human and it was a criminal offense to even marry one. That’s pathetic. It has to be one of the most idiotic things I’ve ever heard in my life. So they discriminate based on skin color, but why not eye color, since we all have various colored eyes?

We brought down racial discrimination (for the most part), so now the haters need a new enemy. The GLBT community seem like a great place to start, for them. They’ve done a pretty good job so far, demonizing them, ostracizing them, even murdering them. Ever since we allowed the Moron Majority to hijack government, religious dogma has been sneakily inserted into law, especially in rural areas, the South, and Midwest. We dumb Americans haven’t made any objections so far, because we just aren’t interested. I am, however. I am very interested in seeing that ALL people in this state and country have full civil rights. The idea that only certain American citizens are worthy of equal rights sounds like something straight out of the mind of George Orwell‘s ‘Animal Farm‘. I’m sure you literate folks know the quote I’m referring to.

I am happy for the Empire State, because they did something right for once. They made a case for equal rights and pulled it off. America keeps bragging how we are the ‘land of the free’, but who exactly are the ‘free’ they speak of? Only the straight population? If we truly believe in the idea of equal rights for all Americans, then we had better prove it, instead of grandstanding on the subject. Words aren’t enough at this point; it’s time for action. I’m glad New Yorkers with a social conscience stood up for human rights.


An artist's conception of a supermassive black...

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Actually, this is a bit of a peace offering, as it will hopefully satisfy both sides of this dilemma. You guys hate the abominable treatment of beloved comic book characters by movie producers and directors. So do I, believe it or not. I can sympathize with you in your need to vent your spleen over the dreadful interpretation, but here’s where we can work together on correcting this gross travesty of screenwriting. What you folks need to be doing is not directing your anger necessarily at the movie, but the ones running the show. I’m talking about those fat cats in charge of producing the flicks and the screenwriters. That’s who you need to be raking over the coals. And perhaps the actors, for involving themselves in such a public embarrassment of a movie.

I give you fanboys a lot of credit for your anguish, because you pick out all these infinitesimal details most folks don’t even know about that are critical to a character. You guys (and gals, I shouldn’t ignore you either) know your stuff, and I think some of you could pull off some decent stories. It would be amazing if all of you chose to write to these producers and let them know how fed up you are with the quality of the storytelling in movies, the ignorance of the screenwriters on the movie plots, and the addict-like craving to rely so heavily on special effects instead of a decent storyline.

One of the main reasons for me wanting to see a movie in the theater is the quality of the story. You can dress up a kitty in your old baby clothes and call it your child, but it’s still a cat under all of it. And not too thrilled about it either. I know I wrote a previous blog about the spate of superhero flicks coming out and so far, they pretty much bombed. Gee, I wonder why?! Let’s see if Hollywood really pays attention to moviegoers when you flood their mailboxes and e-mail with your criticism. You folks are the ones Hollywood should be going to for all the critical details and character histories, you folks should be the ones brought on as consultants, aside from the character creators for these movies, but noooo, they’d rather go with their swelled egoes and write crappy scripts.

I want to see the X-Men: First Class movie, to be honest, because that so far has been decently reviewed, and my little sister loved it. I have to say, some of the actors in it are pretty easy on the eyes too.

Okay, so I was pretty harsh on you folks in a previous blog, but I was just irritated at the amount of venom being put into these tirades. Okay, forget the movie, because it’s not even worth complaining about. I’ll give you my own fangirl experience. I was a huge Pirates of the Caribbean fan, up until the third movie. When it was over, I was SO mad I was ready to take my purse (otherwise known as my supermassive black hole) and attack the movie screen with it. I would’ve, but my mom was with me, and I don’t think she’d have approved of my willful vandalism of public property. I was so disgusted by the ending, and pretty much the whole movie, I began writing my own version of the ending just to soothe my rage. Of course, I need to see this latest one so I can maintain the story continuity. It really got under my skin though, and rarely do movies have that effect on me. Mr. Bruckheimer, I’m extremely disappointed in you. You let me down tremendously when you decided to condemn Will Turner to undead servitude aboard the Flying Dutchman. THAT I won’t forgive you for. I believe in HAPPY ENDINGS, dang it!

So, do you fans out there see what I’m getting at? Go after the producers, because they’re the ones funding these big films. When they finally get the hint that their poorly scripted movies are not satisfying audiences,maybe they’ll actually pay attention. I haven’t seen a movie in the theater since the special edition of ‘Avatar‘ came out, and before that, it was that sorry excuse of a Pirates movie. I only went to get my fill of Jack Sparrow, but that was it.

I could give a flying hoot about special effects; what grabs me is a great story, fine acting, and darn good musical score. All the flash and glitter of effects are secondary for me, to be honest. As it is, I hardly watch TV anymore, because the quality is not there. And it’s even sadder that there are so few truly well-done sci-fi movies that I’d see over and over. The screenwriters churning out this crap being shoveled on screen are overrated; they only get the gigs because of their name, I think. I’m not qualified to write screenplays because I don’t have that level of skill–hey, at least I’m honest to admit that. What I do think I am perceptive of is a good story, and that’s what makes me go to the movies. Fanboys and girls, this is the time to give Hollywood a piece of your collective minds about the quality of the films you enjoy. Go get ’em.


Tin Foil Hat on Baby

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Yes, I do believe I’ve come across another subspecies of internet troll out prowling the interwebs. I’m thinking of calling this one a parasitic comment spammer–maybe someone else can come up with a better description.

This particularly nasty variety of internet troll hijacks other people’s blog comment sections, or any online piece published to promote their own agenda. These people come from all sides, no one side is less culpable than the other. I participate on several social networking sites, and I was particularly infuriated over one discussion whose subject matter is a sore point for me. I have a distinct loathing for conspiracy theorists, especially the anti-government types who follow Alex Jones‘ crap as religiously as their bibles. There are not too many people that I have such seething hatred for, but these kooks are up on that list. I lost my temper and unloaded on the guy, who basically was dumping clip after clip of conspiracy junk into the discussion, hardly allowing anyone else to get a word in edgewise. Anyone who disagreed, such as myself, got royally trashed. He was very nasty, implying I was a sick, psychotic freak who needed to be locked away. He also said he had the right to call me those names because he held advanced degrees in psychology. I only have an Associate’s. Hmph. So, just because someone has a big fat fancy sheet of paper in a frame gives one the right to demonize others. Fascinating. It was a very ugly mess, and it was shut down by the site owner. I amazingly was not thrown off the site, but neither was this pompous fool. He’s still there, posting pile after pile of conspiracy videos, plots of how the secret cabal is going to overtake the world and all other sorts of truly offensive drivel. I will poke around conspiracy sites out of sheer curiosity, because I want to know what kinds of things they talk about. Some of it I just find so compeltely deranged it sounds like it comes from a schizoid’s personal diary. I mean, it’d make for great filler for science fiction stories, but I just can’t swallow some of what they claim.

So, back to this troll. I think the site owner made it clear to try not feeding the resident troll, and the moderators are keeping an eye on him if he tries to pull any other antics. I was truly afraid this guy was going to go after me, because he’s precisely the kind of temperament who doesn’t let go of hurts and holds grudges dear to his heart. I joined another site, and lo and behold, he pops up there too! He’s sneaky enough to title his posts with themes that fit in with the site’s membership, but when you take a look, it has absolutely nothing to do with the discussion title. He replies to his own posts, putting up all kinds of things promoting his agenda.

I have tried to be objective, watched the videos to satisfy my curiosity (without trying  to break my computer in rage), tried to rationalize the arguments made in such clips, and just find myself needing more proof. I was invited to the new site by the site’s creator, and when this fellow showed up, I compared the two profiles from the other and this new one. Same video material, same job, same age. The name was different, but it was the same guy. I informed the site creator about him, and while she won’t ban him, she’s going to keep him under a microscope. I really enjoy this new site. I have been able to discuss topics that I’ve posted on other sites that have gotten ignored, sneered at, and trashed. I’ve met some truly delightful folks there, and I am very disappointed that someone has to basically commandeer the site for their own fanatical agenda. It’s wrong. If I were someone who had a site and someone did this to me, you can bet that mental midget would be gone, pronto.

I’ve seen it being done on progressive and liberal sites as well. Someone comes in seeming to be a fellow progressive, exhorting the ideals of the movement, but  all the while, they’re busy compiling data on their political enemies, finding weaknesses to exploit, making lists of leaders within the organization. Those folks singled out get harassed by right-wing groups, their personal details given out on extremist sites to the listeners, and some of those listeners get the notion to take action on that information. This is all connected, and if you want to call my present train of thought conspiracy-laden, that’s your choice. On a Facebook group I enjoyed, it was getting bombarded by right-wing hacks attempting to shut the page down by overloading the comments. The page admins were being run ragged trying to boot them out. Mind you, I did not see this happening to Tea Party groups, or other related links. Strange, isn’t it?

I have not engaged the troll on this new site, because it honestly makes me  ill to even argue with someone so rabidly paranoid about everyone. I’m just going to watch what he posts. I have an open mind, believe me, but there is a limit to how far I am willing to believe. When someone is advocating violence to promote governmental change, espousing the mentality if you’re not with them, you’re the enemy, people should be concerned. That’s not okay to me, and for someone to arbitrarily dump their ideological manifestos on everyone and insist you accept it as the truth is morally offensive to me. It’s things like this that so disgust me about the human race at times, that people are so virulently suspicious of everything they believe  someone is out to get them. Trolls are just gutless cowards. They hide behind microphones and computers, write hateful manifestos to local papers, create websites devoted to hating everything that isn’t exactly like them, putting the blame for their own personal failures on everyone else but themselves. It’s easier to blame the government for one’s own laziness, or for one’s violent nature. Or blaming the economy because the current president isn’t white. Oh, yeah, there’s plenty more where that came from. Or that the world leaders are really reptilian aliens conniving to take over the world and enslave humankind. I think that one’s priceless.

This is what one of this subspecies of internet troll does to websites; cause disruption and bad feelings all around, because they can’t bear to see anyone else having a good time. If you want them on your site as part of ‘free speech’, be my guest, but when your site has become inundated by lunatic schemes, anti-government hysteria and hate speech, don’t come crying to me. I just pointed it out to you. Now it’s your mess to deal with.


pile of clothing

Image via Wikipedia

This is something I have long pondered over the years. Sometimes my folks get annoyed by the way I dress, as in I dress too ‘young’ for my age. That is, my workplace attire is rather casual. A lot of the time I can be seen in jeans and t-shirts with some kind of playful or cartoonish graphics on it. Novelty prints, like Star Wars or my favorite, a Labyrinth movie print. Some people think that a 36 year old woman shouldn’t dress this way, that they should be wearing a proper suit and heels to work or in public. My workplace isn’t precisely suitable for formal dress, as in I get dusty, skirts can be awkward to move about quickly in, and long ones can get caught under office chairs. My coworkers have never seen me in ratty pants, or shirts with holes, or even dirty clothing. I think they’d be shocked and worried if I ever showed up looking like that. They also don’t see my looks as detrimental to my abilities either.

I suppose my appearance also bugs people, because of the type of earrings I wear in them. I mentioned in previous blogs I have stretched lobes, but they’re not very large. Most of the time people hardly notice them. I’ve been fortunate to work in a place that doesn’t mind them. Or my tattoos–I ONLY have two, and both are mostly covered up.

There is the mindset though, that certain personal styles define a person as less than intelligent, or that they’re being immature. If I do dress casually, it’s never trashy or unkempt. I would never allow myself to leave the house looking like a complete slob. Sometimes I do dress up a bit, such as pairing a classy top with some tailored jeans, nice shoes, something in that vein.

I think I’m eclectic, but not juvenile. That’s the mistake some people make when they judge people on looks. Look at celebrities; they wear just about anything they want, even if it doesn’t look so great on them. They get ridiculed by the fashion mavens, but I don’t think it necessarily stops them from repeating those errors. Prime example of such: Lady Gaga.

Some people adopt a certain style because it helps define who they are, that it’s a fashion trend they enjoy. Some people can get away with it, regardless of age. Some do it for attention; they dress provocatively because they have a need for attention. Maybe it’s because of something in their history, or maybe they just like being the center of attention. I don’t think it’s necessarily fair to say once someone reaches a certain age, they can’t dress in a particular manner. Some bratty kids told me I was an old maid and shouldn’t wear graphic-print tees because I was in my 30s. Then again, they were teenagers, and clearly didn’t have much wisdom in their remarks.

But what defines a person’s competence? Is it one’s appearance, or is it intelligence? I know it’s various factors that play into this, but I don’t think because one looks a little out of the ordinary it automatically lowers their intelligence or competency. I understand workplace standards, and regulations, but I think because this world is becoming more diverse, we need to be a bit more accepting of others. I think this applies mostly to the older generations, because they find it bizarre and uncomfortable to see people who look so different in public. A person can look completely polished, impressive and popular, but that can just be a facade. Behind all the dazzle, there’s not much to that person. The same could be said for someone who is very homely, plain and quiet, but their actions can change minds. Or someone who’s covered in tattoos and piercings; they could end up being the kindest person you ever met.

It’s a double-edged sword. We want our own sense of individuality, but we also don’t want to be seen as a joke. It’s a tricky balancing act. I have my moments when I feel like being a little silly, or I want to look edgy and dark. I’ve pulled off looking goth and then looking very girly. For me, it’s more of the mood I’m in, and I know when I want to carry off such looks. I know my boundaries and I also know what looks right on me and not. It’s style, it’s how you present yourself to others that is the game-changer. I was never happy about my physical appearance, but through others encouraging me, I’ve learned slowly to accept what I have. It’s the blessing and curse of being unique. When you love yourself, you take care in how you present yourself to others. I had to learn that for myself. I don’t necessarily have to take so much time in how I look when I go out, but it makes ME feel better about myself. How we look is just one part of our being; what we say and do are even more important. Clothes, looks are just on the outside. What really matters is inside. We need to dump stereotypes because they don’t help anyone, to be honest.

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