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Posts Tagged ‘my own little soapbox’

Logic Bomb

March 22, 2010 7 comments

It finally happened, folks.

Politics (or the stupidity it seems to attract from all sides) has officially caused me to lose. my. shit.

There is an individual I have known for a rather long time here in Chapel Hill.

Today I was called a Nazi.

When I asked how health care was not covered under the “General Welfare” clause, I was informed that if health is nationalized then it’s one more step towards a Communist state and from there Nazi Germany and burning Jews in ovens.

So National Health Care Reform = Slippery Slope = Communism=

Nein! Nein! Nein! Nein!

Godwin’s Law* is a powerful thing indeed.

So let’s forget the fact that I am not a socialist. That I am not a nationalist. That I do not blame specific groups for the troubles of my country. That I do not see the need to “dispose” of political dissidents.

Or the little tidbit that I would have had to go into hiding if I wanted to avoid either the camps or a bullet.

To the people out there who see this as socialism, please be sure of its definition. Wikipedia has a lengthy set of articles on the subject. “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.”*

But what do I know? I’m just an Obamaniac who only voted for the man because he was black.

If you’ll excuse me, I have  to go offer a few goats to the Obama shrine I have hidden in my closet while I wait for him to reveal how he fooled the world.

Or I could “worship” someone else which sounds like a much more enjoyable use of my time.

auf Wiedersehen, meine Fruende.

*Godwin’s Law is an observation made by Mike Godwin on (paraphrased) how the longer a discussion goes, the greater the likelihood that a comparison to Hitler is coming.

**The quote is directly from The Princess Bride

***Photo credit goes to Quentin Taratino’s Inglorious Basterds and its official site.

****The phrase translates to “goodbye, my friends” in case anyone was unclear.

This? This Is My Heart. See How It Breaks.

January 11, 2010 26 comments

Sunday  evening, a few of you caught my outburst on Twitter, I apologize for that. For those curious, I am better now. Not a lot but I am no longer in danger of curling into a ball and sobbing or smashing something in anger.

Probably would have been both.

What could destroy every single shred of emotional stability I have like that, you ask?

If you have been reading this blog prior to last June or just read back through my archives, I make it pretty obvious that I adore children. We’re talking kid fever like woah. This is part of why I came to care for Daybreak as much and as fast as I did.  If I’m in the supermarket and there is a baby around, I will make silly faces at them without fail. My paternal instincts have been turned up to 11 and have been since I hit puberty.

And in that lies the irony that played a big part in my hating God for almost 6 years.

Because of some damage to my testes, I have a very low sperm count. (Very simplified explanation.) As a result? Sterility.

The guy who wants kids so much so that it hurts? Can’t have them.

While I had known for years that I would have trouble fathering a child, going to a doctor and finding out that it would actually be a damn near impossibility outside of in vitro or adoption for me to have kids…there were tears. I eventually accepted this fact (as much as you can accept something like that) and had decided that when I was fully ready I would just adopt. Have to admit thought that it was easier to hide when I was a teenager and only two or three people I knew were having kids as opposed to now where seven couples are expecting, one just had a baby girl last week, and two others are actively trying.

Every single time I see a baby, I kind of melt into a puddle of goo. And even though it does hurt, I still love to make them smile or laugh. Seeing those eyes light up and hearing a loud giggle as they kick around leaves me with a huge smile on my face.

I am OK with that.

Then this happened.

Said video was also accompanied by a message saying I needed to  learn to deal with the issue.

Seriously?!

You, as my friend, think you are doing me a favour by shoving that in my face? Bet you were surprised by how pissed I was at you during that phone conversation huh?

Would you send someone who had a permanent limp a video of a man running a marathon and tell them to deal with it?

No?

Then why the fuck would you send me something like that?!

I don’t get why taking a small moment to think before doing something is so hard for people. We aren’t that lazy, are we? It’s called compassion folks, practice a little.

The events of yesterday cost me a friend of 2 years. And as apparently I should be able to deal with this  (in her own words, “keep how it affected me to myself and deal with it as a man ” and that I should not be angry for her “doing her duty as my friend”) I was told that she would better off without me.

Feeling’s entirely mutual, bitch.

Not letting it show how much things affect me led to me almost putting a gun in my mouth. I’m never going back to that. I refuse to.

So I’m going to bandage the new bruises on my heart. I’m going to find my happy place. And I’m gonna move on with my life.

Last night was not in the least pleasant. So after I hung up the phone and was trying to bottle the emotions until I could control them, I decided not to. I let it out and then I tried to find something that made me happy. Just one thing.

There really was no contest there.

And with tears still falling, I danced.

Even when my heart was clattering against the floor, I still found it in me to smile. That, dear friends, is dealing with it. The best way I know how.

*Thanks to everyone who sent me good wishes and checked up on me last night. You all win at life. Seriously.

**Super oh-my-god-I-would-hug-you-if-I-could thanks go to BelleRenee who having never heard of me nor knowing what my situation was not only sent her own good thoughts to me and asked how she could help but did not hesitate (there was seriously like a 2 or 3 minute wait) to agree to give me permission to use her famous vlog for this post.

***Comments are open on this post. Please don’t make me regret that.

No, A Negative Body Image Is NOT Just A Problem For Women

December 9, 2009 11 comments

My eyes? Too slanted.

My nose? Too flat.

My lips? Too pouty.

My cheeks? Too puffy.

My ears? Too small.

My beard? Too high maintenance

My hair? Too thick.

My shoulders? Too broad.

My arms? Too muscled.

My hands? Too big.

My stomach? Too pudgy.

My legs? Too short.

My calves? Too built.

My feet? Too wide.

I see all the imperfections of my body. I will never ever be a male model. Ever.

Many of my female friends have gotten incredibly angry at me while saying that I didn’t understand what it’s like to feel ugly and fat because I am a guy. I was patient. Probably too patient most of the time. But since this is my space to say what I want I figure now is as good a time as any to say my piece.

As an 11 year-old I was too heavy to play little league football. By over 20 lbs. Hell, I remember breaking down crying back in middle school when I couldn’t complete the mile run. I remember loathing the gym locker room because of the comments made. So please, no one take it personally when I say being told I don’t know what it’s like to feel fat is like pushing down on my berserk button to the point of breaking it.

My first ever breakdown? It was at age 13 when a particular idiot decided to see how far she could push me about my size as it was widely believed that I was honest-to-God incapable of anger. That incident was the only time I have ever wanted to hit a girl out of pure rage. Instead I asked to be excused and spending the rest of that period in the bathroom and hyperventilating.

Thankfully my full growth spurt and years of wrestling (to a lesser extent football) meant that I had packed on a good deal of muscle. While I really did love wrestling for the adrenaline rush it gave me, the secret reason was how I had slimmed down to look ‘solid’ rather than ‘butterball’. For a kid who used to not be able to run a mile in 20 minutes, I could now do it in about 8. I could do chin ups. I could lift weights with the best of them. And I worked my ass off for it all.

Now?

I have registered to compete in the Half-Marathon (13.1 miles) for the United Health Care of the Carolina Carolina Marathon in March.

I weigh 195 lbs. with 17% body fat. Thanks to the US Navy Recruiter’s for that bit of info.

Quite honestly? I’m in the best shape of my life.

However, that doesn’t mean I have forgotten where I started. During my extreme weight loss episodes (AKA the times where I was too stubborn to see much less admit I have traits of anorexia) I was working out every other day for about an hour or two at the least burning as much fat as I could. It honestly didn’t seem like such a bad thing at the moment but I know better in the now.

I do get it, ladies. You yelling that I don’t has no bearing on that fact. For many of you who have said something similar, I probably get it better than you ever did. Why?

Because while you are helped by everyone who loves you, I am too jaded to believe any one would take a guy with body issues seriously. Having been told, to my face, that I should just suck it up and deal doesn’t really lend itself to optimism on the matter. That is the difference between you and me. Of the two of us, I am the one who should cope on my own because to do otherwise would be seen as weak.

Double standard much?

You know what? Fuck it.

Insecurity? Been there. Done that. Have nothing but scars to show for it.

So what’s stopping you?

When Enough Is Enough

November 20, 2009 6 comments

Dear Jesus,

Don’t know if you’ve been listening lately but I have been blowing up your prayer hotline recently. Not sure if my messages got through (certainly hope they did) but decided to drop a line just for my peace of mind.

I spent a good portion of my life thinking you were just one more pretentious man whose name has been used to excuse bloodshed for 2 millenia. In my defense, I was young and unhealthily angry. I know I know, no excuse but what else can I say other than I eventually grew out of it. But my time as a…I guess militant agnostic is as close to accurate as I can get, did leave its mark.

Despite being my wholly unrepentant sinful self (slight sarcasm mode here), I do try and live up to your examples. I do my best to remain humble. I do help anyone who needs it. I do follow The Golden Rule. I try not to judge. I think I hit most of the high points of your own teachings.

However when I hear of churches who collected donations for Question One in Maine asking what they though you would do? I was pissed. Then some followers outdid themselves by proclaiming they would stop caring for the homeless if gay marriage was legalized and this was held up as a good idea instead of hypocrisy. My brain broke. And I have to wonder what you actually would say if you were to walk the Earth again in the 21st century.

I disagree with many of your followers. Nor am I particularly quiet about it.

Forgive me if this really is some kind of grave sin. Not sure where you said not to think for myself, would like to think you had more common sense from that.

Maybe I’m just bitter at being ostracisized from my own church? My faith in fellow Christians? Yeah it kinda died a little when someone I had prayed with for 2 years tells me to my face that I have no business among them if I disagree with your word. Or that they would pray I would change my mind so I would be allowed into Heaven.  “Your word” being that lovely passage in Levictus that is pointed out so often.

I still have faith in you, still talk with you, still try and live my life as best I can. Maybe I just shouldn’t go to church period and fully embraced lapsed Catholicism. Then again I’m stubborn and I know that I will come to hate myself for “copping out”.

What I do know is that when I die, if I get to the Gates and Peter or you tell me that my dissent means I will not be allowed in, I’d have to say you aren’t the person I thought you were and I was disappointed our relationship was under false pretense.

Couldn’t really be that sad as I have all ready promised a friend I would share a condo with her out in the 4th Circle. Whole new spin to the term housewarming, no?

Yours,

A disappointed Catholic

P. S. I am currently hoping my little heart out that you have a sense of humour because if not, then I am thoroughly screwed.

Baby Steps People, Baby Steps

April 3, 2009 13 comments

You may have noticed that I have not written any serious posts in a while. It hasn’t been because I have nothing I want to talk about. I do, believe me, I have something that has been bursting inside me for a few weeks now. The problem? I had no idea how to go about addressing it. To quote the fantabulous LiLu, “I’d rather keep you smiling.”

But I think I need to get this out there somewhere, even if it is just in a protected post.

Since January, I’ve been distracted. I’m damn good at hiding it but I always have this anxiety building up in my chest. Hello panic attacks, I’ve missed you.

At first I thought it was because I was working 30-hour+ weeks while taking 16 credit hours, all while balancing my girlfriend, her daughter, my friends, and this blog. Despite the fact that I barely have time to breathe much less find time to exercise, read for fun, go to the movies,or sing I still do. Somehow.

But always there is the spectre of…something present.

And slowly, I figured out what that something was.

When in the first three months of 2009, SEVEN?! of my friends have gotten engaged (two to each other), all I could think was what was in the water and how could I avoid it. When one of said friends asked me to sing and play guitar at their wedding, I was honoured to say yes but in the back of my mind there was a crisis of epic proportions brewing.

The kicker? One day I stumble onto Jenny the Bloggess for the first time and what post should I read? Yep, the first ever blog marriage proposal.

Seriously Universe? Seriously?!

I thought things were getting ridiculous. Then people, both in real life and in the bloggy world, started asking me when I planned on proposing to Eva. When I say it won’t be anytime soon, some (in a move that never fails to escape my understanding) get angry with me. As if I have an expiration date on my relationship with this woman and only giving her a ring can save it. One person even had the cajones to tell me to grow up and do it all ready.

I can say with complete honesty that I love this woman more than I can ever fully express. Despite my attempts to dissuade her from liking me in the first place, she came to love me. To want me in her life.

Then you have Daybreak who I can now admit fairly freely that I see as my daughter. Said fact still boggles my mind if I stop to think about it. Even though neither is a new event by any means, I still sometimes get confused as to who she is talking to when she says “Papa” or “Daddy”, the latter having become increasingly common as of late. After Eva asked me to describe what I thought a dad should do for their daughter, I told her as she wrote down what I said. She then gave me instances of me doing each item on said list at least three times each.

However, I know I am not ready for marriage. Eva has admitted that she isn’t either. I’m barely 21 while she is still a few months shy of 22, we are both still in school (although she’s a grad student), and we still have about two months before our one year anniversary. As far as us living together, that’s less an issue of being ready and more that it would be a giant hassle for me to move in with her or getting a place of our own as she still more than a year on her lease. This is why when I move out of my apartment next month, I’m renting a house with Scarlett.

That last bit really put a bee in some bonnets (especially with my family). Here’s a newsflash for those of you (if any) thinking on how can I live with another girl while dating Eva. My answer? Ignoring both the fact that I am head over heels for Eva and that me and Scarlett act like siblings a great deal of the time, I kind of have the wrong plumbing for her romantic tastes. Therefore she is the perfect roommate. The fact that she is even more into video games than I am is just an added bonus.

While the day may come where I do go crazy propose, I can promise you that it is nowhere in the near future. I know the story usually goes dating to engagement to wedding to children and that I am breaking that unwritten law by (in my mind and heart) having a daughter all ready, I don’t particularly give a flying fuck.

I’ve never been one to do things  the normal way, why should love be any different?

Where I Turn The Mental Filter Off

March 25, 2009 5 comments

Here’s something that my friends in real life come to know about me very quickly. That’s the fact that once I consider you a friend, you are essentially part of my family now and there is very little I won’t do for you. For example, when a friend had her mom’s camera stolen at a party I forked over $60 to help pay for a new one. Or seriously contemplating making the near 3 hour drive just to try and help someone I had never met outside of blogging.

However, this also means that when actually asked for my opinion on problems within my various circles of friends is that I will often say what people don’t want to hear.

Essentially, I tell people when to pull their heads out of their asses.

All of the “he said, she said” bullshit finally frayed the last of my tattered nerves on a current drama bomb and I basically told everyone in the room to sit down, shut up, and start dealing with their problems like quasi-adults.

Hopefully I got through to them and things can start getting back to normal because the cause of the trouble is a truly stupid reason for friendships to be cut off.

But I’m not giving up on them.

An Open Letter to God

March 4, 2009 6 comments

Dear God,

Me and you have had a very tumultuous relationship over the years.

Growing up in that wooden church, I learned to sing your praises. I learned that you would always look out for me if I was faithful. I learned that you always had a plan, and that there was a reason for everything that happened to us. Even when I burned myself making grilled cheese for myself and my sister because no one was there to do it for us and the cereal was too high up even if I climbed onto the counter, I still believed you were watching over me.

Then I was raped. And my world was turned upside down. In that moment, I think I started to lose my faith in you. No child should ever feel that much rage or self-loathing. And I blamed you. What kind of god could let an 8 year-old go through that? So the day I spat on the cross at the altar of the church I had grown up in and said “fuck [your] plan” I meant it with every bit of my heart.

It’s funny (and in pathetic kind of way) but as many times as my relatives would tell me I was too young to lose faith in you, only one ever entertained the idea that this same logic meant I was too young to have faith in you. Maybe that’s part of why Rose and Mami were such a blessing. I spent hours talking to them about religion over the years and I slowly found myself adopting their beliefs as my own. My Nana, my devoutly Roman Catholic Nana, was the only person blood related to me who actually encouraged me forming my own ideas. I regret never telling her just how that meant to me.

At 16, I had learned some balance. I was finally starting to make friends again. I was finally starting to let the smiling mask drop. The trip to Italy, and in specific the Vatican that summer, that summer changed my life. The Sistine Chapel was impressive but it was St. Paul’s Cathedral that took my breath away. I remember kneeling as I listened to the Eucharist when out the corner of my eye I saw something amazing. On the other side of building were a man and woman, neither could have been much younger than 70, in wedding regalia. And after the call for prayer, the room was silent and for the first time I felt this was truly a sacred place. I came to realize something that day. Nothing truly uncaring could have something so heartbreakingly beautiful built in their name.

That day, for the first time since that horrible night after I had cleaned myself of blood and fluids as best I could, I cried. No sound was made but they sloped down my cheeks steadily. I opened my mouth and began something I had not done in 5 years. “Padre nuestro que estás en los cielos. Santificado sea tu nombre. Venga tu reino.” As I prayed I felt the woman sitting beside me lace her arm through mine and begin saying the Lord’s Prayer along with me. It didn’t happen overnight, but that day killed a majority of my resentment towards you.

Now here I am, little more than a month from Confirmation and I find myself increasingly hesitant. While I have come to care for each member of my congregation as members of my extended family some of the things they have said repulse me, their view of gay marriage being the most prevalent example.

How can I say that you only meant for romantic love to be between man and woman when the people I consider my parents were both women who had been together for a decade, raised a daughter, and made me who I am. When I mentioned this point, I was met with scandalized expressions. The worst point was when someone patted my hand and said although they did a great thing for me, they were still going to Hell.

I can’t pretend to agree, I respect these people far too much to do so. I also don’t want to leave because I feel like there is still good I can do there. Good I want to do.

I believe that Jesus had it right when he said “let he who is without sin cast the first stone.”

I believe in affording everyone the common decency of being treated as human being should.

I believe that we all mess up and need help sometimes and that this is OK.

I believe that we all need other people in our lives. To laugh. To grieve. To simply be.

I believe that every promise we make should be as sacred as a pinky swear is to a child.

I believe that all religion and science are merely trying to find a meaning behind it all, thus the two are not mutually exclusive.

I believe that forgiving someone is hard but a worthy effort. Forgiving oneself is harder still.

I believe that music, and flowers, and the sound of a child’s laughter are all proof that there is something greater than ourselves in the world.

I believe that the family you are born into is essentially just a starting point.

I believe that sex should have meaning behind it, not necessarily marriage.

I believe that when we think we have given it our all, we should make one last push.

I believe that something as simple as a smile can brighten a day.

I believe that love is love, no matter the packaging.

So if it all the same to you, I think I’ll stick to these ideas. I know I’ll be condemned by some for them as they are “blasphemous”. As long as I’m sharing my beliefs, here’s a last one for the road.

I believe that as long as I know I have done what I know in my heart was right and stayed true to myself, that when I die and stand before you I can do so with pride as I know I lived well.

Sincerely,

Kendall