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Archive for December, 2014

Hear the bells

Welp I’m heading back South today. I always have a moment where I wonder if I’ll get back down there and just stay. Just never come back. I’ll send for my things and tell great stories of my time in the land of people who think connections = character and where the bull in the china shop approach to getting what you want is employed to an alarming degree. It’s hard up here for a Steel Magnolia.

Ah but of course, I love it, too. And I’m not done. Not nearly. I’m going for something and I’m about as stubborn as they come if I’ve decided to do something and succeed at it. Despite the careless, unkind and remarkably insecure bullies throwing up their little roadblocks here and there. And on that point…

I’ve been trying to figure out how to write about this because I’m annoyed and my objectivity is compromised when I’m annoyed. But I need to get it out, for almost exactly the same reasons. I know some folks don’t get why that’s necessary, the release of thoughts on the page so to speak. Frankly, I don’t know how everyone doesn’t require it. It’s how I stay sane. So here goes, with as much diplomacy as possible (and I’ve written this like four times because the cursing was out of control and I should probably temper that…).

Not that I care really, because people choose their paths and adults can make their decisions and learn from them without any interference from me…okay wait. That’s all bullshit. Because I do actually care. Maybe it’s just because I got pulled in (against my wishes) and I was just trying to be encouraging so I care for my own sake, or maybe I care because there are people who just touch your heart in some way and you can’t help yourself, I don’t know. But I do care and so, cryptically and with metaphor as is my way, here goes:

I knew a guy back in Athens, a friend of an ex boyfriend, who dated a girl who did crazy things. I won’t go into the whole story but I remember the time she put breadsticks in the freezer to get them cold so she could use that in an argument about how late boyfriend was coming home and how cold the dinner was. Seriously. I was floored because holy cow girl, if you’re having to make stuff up perhaps your argument is weak. But dude ended up marrying her and I thought at the time how weird it was because he was fully aware of the games and would laugh about them with my boyfriend.

I’ve changed my mind. I still think that kind of manipulation is nuts, but the thing about this girl is that she really and truly LOVED that guy. And one way I know that is she would never, EVER, have done anything to expose him to ridicule or make him look a fool. (Although it would appear, after a quick check on Facebook, they are, in fact, now divorced. *shocked face*) There is a school of thought I guess — and I’m only mentioning it because I got dragged in — that exposure as a means to control is just the thing to keep your relationships listing pleasantly rather than making you seasick. But here’s the thing: people, unlike, say, animals, cannot really be controlled. They have thumbs and can open doors and get mobile and feed themselves, if you take my point. And I say all that to say this:

I am not your problem. You’re chasing a red herring there and you seem to be confused about — well let’s just call them technicalities. And I’d help you out there if you hadn’t come at me like some deranged, jealous Queen of “Do What I Say!” Heh. Yeah, no.

And dudes, again, I get that you have these little games you play with ladies to keep them in line or make them jealous in some weird dance for control. I have four brothers. I’ve seen a lot of that over the years. And recently, I got pulled into that dance where a man fighting with his wife allowed her to believe she needed to worry about me (she really, REALLY didn’t. Dude knew it, I was explicit about it. But hey, what’s a little character assassination among friends?). Thank God there were witnesses to that little fabrication because Goddammit that made me mad. Dude’s now going through a divorce *shocked face* and wants to get together and have lunch. Heh. Yeah, no. I’m okay not being disrespected and lied about thanks. You can pick someone else to be a tool. I’m just trying to be nice and encouraging and when that’s met with your dark shit it makes me question the goods and the bads of the world and I’d rather not have to do that so close to Christmas.

Anyway, hope you get it worked out and no one is seriously damaged and everyone learns how to be less selfish and more giving, less arrogant and social climby and more steeped in faith and love. But, and especially if you can’t get your shit straight, keep me out of it. And on that note…

My father used to tell me that when I was younger he would give me the opposite advice of what he thought I should do because, being a bit naturally rebellious, I would do the opposite of what he said. I’m starting to understand how frustrating that was.

Okay, I need to motor so I can finish my tasks and get on the road to Atlanta. Short thoughts on other things before I go…

So, Rand Paul Marco Rubio and Cuba…Look, I write for a pretty libertarian news site and they love Rand Paul, and I dig him on the domestic front in many ways. But I really don’t understand why he would antagonize a colleague like Rubio — who knows the Cuba issue maybe better than anyone — when he could try to work with him and learn something. Nothing says he has to agree with him, but insulting him on Twitter and Facebook just seems aggressive and I’m not sure what the goal is. I’m fairly certain it won’t be positive for Paul in the end.

The guy that shot those cops was a bag of cracked nuts and is absolutely to blame for their deaths, but that does not mean that Al Sharpton doesn’t need to shut his face up already. Because those crazy people are waiting for permission and direction to be insane and vent their insane frustrations and YOU ARE PROVIDING THAT TO THEM. And you’re a horrible person.

Yes, it absolutely was. And we caved. I really look forward to the day we prefer strength in office again as opposed to bullying. They are actually opposites, you know that, right?

Currently freaking me out.

I liked this tremendously, particularly #4.

Go ahead and read up on. Still can’t get over how some people don’t know basic stuff about technology. Again, I would help you but you’re not all that nice, so…

Speaking of tech, I think DISH caves rather quickly because they’re business people and they have a bottom line to answer to. And Fox will probably let them get away with posturing and acting like they won some kind of negotiation. Egos are silly things.

My buddy Josh is a good reporter. So I guess when we’re all complaining about the bureaucracy surrounding the internet we have the Ford Foundation to thank.

And while it’s happening, there’s plenty of time to create the myth that this will only benefit Canada and not our economy at all. Whatever.

This is a good read about tech and small businesses and tax policy, if any of those things are up your alley…

This is a good read on the difference between income and wealth and how they’ve both been affected by the recession. This kind of thing reminds me how much I dislike the twerp and his band of merry intellectuals that don’t know — or maybe don’t care — about building wealth as a general rule. As long as they get theirs, man…Al Sharpton’s all.

Also kind of freaking me out.

But there are reasons to be optimistic. Building things, creating, giving back to the world, is exciting stuff.

This is uncomfortable, but fascinating and about as Southern Gothic as you can get. As an aside, I reviewed that cookbook when it came out.

Well I mean that’s one way to get around refrigeration/pasteurization.

Have never liked milk. Which might explain some things. But I like chocolate milk…

One of my favorite Christmas songs. And this is a cool version. A capella, and rather unbelievably.

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The Unshakable Remains

Thucydides

With thanks to my friend Josh, let’s start with this:

“The society that separates scholars from its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards and its fighting done by fools.” -Thucydides

Alright, so I had a mini-epiphany: much as I would like to be a kinder, sweeter kind of person — that’s the kind of woman that men like, right? — there are just some things that are non-negotiables in terms of behavior and I’m worried this makes me recalcitrant and unforgiving. Here’s what I’m saying, spurred of course by a recent reconnection with the Twerp — DO NOT JUDGE. I was trying to get rid of his number in a massive I-never-talk-to-you contact purge and couldn’t without finally telling him what I thought of his stupid email to my family. Which led to a tiny discussion. And dammit the man makes me question things. And there it is. I’m not proud of it. — I might be kind of mean. It’s troubling. But then it occurred to me: I’m not mean and I know it. I’m selfish and I lack patience. And my choice to deal with the Twerp is perfect proof of that. You don’t have to have patience to deal with a sociopath because they enjoy your frustration. And you can be selfish because a sociopath wouldn’t understand or respect anything else. So dealing with someone like that absolves you of having to do the work of relating. Apparently I’m also lazy. I’m sure my father will raise his hands to heaven and whisper, “Finally” when he reads this. But it’s an uncomfortable realization for me. And I’m working it out…so let’s move along, shall we?

Let’s talk for a minute about negotiating the people in this world who believe they should have what they want for no reason other than they, in their infinite awesomeness, want it. Without being too specific so as to not start a war, let me just say that there is a social contract and a legal framework we live in that prevents you from just having a temper tantrum and disrupting another person’s life because you can’t make your relationships work. I’m sorry you’re unhappy in your marriage but that’s not something I signed up to have to navigate. And if you need my space to fix your life, you’re going to have to do it legally and ethically, and very likely, on my time. I know because I checked. I’m type A like that. I like to be informed. Anyway, wish I wasn’t such a hardass for your sake but I have been tiptoeing around women like you, quite literally, my entire life, and I’m fairly exhausted by the effort. If the men that choose to marry you want to give in to your whims, that’s the decision they make. I’m under no such obligation. So let’s conduct business. But I’ve no interest in the foot-stomping, mail-withholding, passive-aggression.

The other night a friend of mine showed up unexpectedly at a mini-celebration to honor the repeal of prohibition and we discussed the Garner/Ferguson cases because we’re both upper middle-class white kids from Atlanta and we can talk about those things without any real risk to ourselves or others. He lives fairly close to me now in DC and he made a comment, in the course of the conversation, that he admittedly reacts with nervousness when he sees a group of young black kids approaching him on the street. And that informs how he views both what happened in NYC and in Ferguson. That’s all fine and well. But my friend — and I do like this man — tried to apply that same nervousness to me and how I viewed the situation. It was as if anything I said about it was viewed through that same prism — fear of a group of young black guys approaching me on the street. Man did it start to piss me off, and here’s why: I do not have that problem. I see a group of young black guys and I see the kids in my high school, good kids from good families. I rely on my instinct to inform me when there’s danger about. And that’s something that makes the hair go up on the back of my neck because of circumstance, which is informed by things more than just color. So, I guess, if we’re going to talk about these things, and I’m just throwing it out there, be prepared to accept that your biases may not be shared.

Okay and alright then. I’m tired and I want to walk my dog and go to bed. So other stuff and things:

Why are we smearing the CIA over torture you ask? Well I mean… Brennan, at his presser today, impressed me as someone who cares about the work of the agency and also understand the precariousness of the bureaucratic rock/hard place he’s squished between. Those are the people who do the hard jobs in government, if they manage to walk that line. It’s an unsung talent and not one you want everywhere. But sometimes it’s appropriate.

I’m always fascinated by articles that talk about American oil energy production as some kind of market miracle (not that this one does, just that it’s offering something to the mainstream that industry people have been aware of forever I would think). We made the Saudi’s rich on purpose. We conserved. It was a good strategy. And while we enter the market and make everything cheaper, there should be some focus on why we’re having to do this now and what that means for alternative energy. Because oil, unless I misunderstand how it’s harnessed, is not infinite. Its production may be close to that, but we have to be able to get to it. And that’s the issue at hand. On that note, here’s what it’s like elsewhere.

When I’m out and about, I hear people complain about Fox News to the point of mouth foaming. I watch it, along with a lot of other news channels. I find it pretty informative and fair, depending on the show. So, yeah. Think for yourselves kids.

It’s something to think about. Because aren’t we all just venters online anymore?

I like that Ed Henry keeps it real. I think the White House likes it, too, since he gets to travel with them. I have faith Ed will always keep it real.

Benny’s funny. And NR was smart to harness that.

As my friend Michelle said when she posted this, “Have fun!” I LOVE THIS STUFF. It hurts my head but it’s the stuff.

I am #16.

Yeah, we like the cooler climes.

It’s a wardrobe must-have.

The boys disagree, but I see a championship in our future. And I don’t care if that mean girl who tells people not to invite me to parties has a problem with me saying it.

I spent an hour pouring over this, finding the books if I hadn’t read them, and absorbing the first several paragraphs. I offer my favorite to you all, from CS Lewis: “All that is fully real is Heavenly. For all that can be shaken will be shaken and only the unshakable remains.”

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