Posted in Word Therapy

Don’t Read the Damn Comments

I start to read the comments on the latest election news coverage. My eyes glaze over. My heart races. I get shaky. I have to exit out of the dialogue before I respond or start to cry. I’m already angry. And it’s not going away any time soon.

Ever since the 2000 election I have been passionate about politics. I am a liberal Democrat. A tree hugger. I believe that unless you are hurting others around you, I am pretty cool with your choice of lifestyle. I make my own choices and respect others to do the same. I am pro choice. When gay marriage passed nationally, I cried. When DADT was repealed, I cheered. The transgender community can use whatever bathroom they feel most comfortable with. Marijuana should be legal because of its medical benefits and because what state doesn’t need the extra cash?? (Just go ask Washington and Colorado)

When Natalie Maines announced at the Dixie Chicks concert that they were ashamed of George Bush and the fact that he was from Texas, I supported her right to say that. I didn’t like Bush when he was in office and all the harm he and his VP Cheney did. I was outspoken about this while friends sneered and told me I was wrong and that we did need to be in Iraq. When my husband and I went to the movies to see Farenheit 9/11, we were booed by moviegoers as we entered the theater. I didn’t care. I knew we were on the right side of history, no matter how isolating it felt.

When President Obama was sworn into office, I knew I liked him. Senator McCain was a decent enough guy but his crackpot vice president pick sank his ship. And in the past 8 years I have seen President Obama and his amazing wife Michelle do so much good that I want to throw a temper tantrum every time I think about them leaving the White House. They are not perfect people. President Obama has not done everything that he promised. But he has accomplihed a lot with the hand he was dealt, thanks to former President Bush, and Congress blocking him every step of the way. And they are inherently good people.

Back to our current election season. Hillary and Donald. Hillary was not my first pick. I love Bernie and his grand ideas. He wants us to be better and he wants to get us the means to do it. But, alas, that didn’t work out. So now #Imwithher. Hillary isn’t the most likeable. She doesn’t “smile enough”. GAG. Typing that sentence makes me nauseous. This woman has been in the public eye since the 70s and has worked for the good of the people. Has she made mistakes? Of course she has. Big ones even. But please tell me if you haven’t made dumb mistakes in your life. She stayed in the public eye after it came out that President Clinton had an affair. She kept working for us. She lost the democratic nomination in 2008 to President Obama and became his secretary of state. That tells me that she knows the work she does is more important than losing the nomination. She has been repeatedly investigated for the devastating Benghazi terrorist attack and not been found guilty of anything. I had to do my research when it came to Hillary. I wanted to know my stuff when I made the decision to vote for her.

Now let’s discuss Mr. Trump. I watched The Apprentice. A couple of seasons even. I enjoyed it. And then “Celebrity” Apprentice came and I stopped. He tried to run for office in 2008 and started the Obama birther nonsense. I ignored him and the minimal news coverage. Now it is 2016 and I am in full panic mode. What the hell happened to our country that he is the Republican nominee? There are many reasons why this is wrong on so many levels but first and foremost: HE ISN’T QUALIFIED. The man has not done one day of work for our country and its benefit. His whole career has been about him taking advantage of people and never being held accountable. Stories continue to come out about all the crooked dealings he has done: paying off an attorney general, not paying employees, etc., etc.

I am a white middle class female. I’m afraid. I can walk down the street at any time during the day and not worry about being stopped by the police for no good reason. I don’t worry for my daughter or my son. But I am afraid. I am afraid that Donald Trump is going to be the next president and set our country back 50 years while inciting more violence and racism towards minorities.

I recently got into an argument yesterday on Facebook (I know, I know, I should just shut up) with a man who is friends with one of my friends. It concerned the complaining that people (mostly white) are doing about Colin Kaepernick. I commented that I am disgusted with white privilege and that it makes me ashamed to be white. This male commented sarcastically that Colin is the poster child for social injustice. I responded by saying that I never said he was but that if Aaron Rodgers or Tom Brady did what he was doing there wouldn’t be death threats or burning jerseys. I then asked him to take his ignorance elswewhere. He answered by calling me sweetie and a bitch with a chip on her shoulder, said I had a little brain, and that my mom and dad shouldn’t let me on dangerous websites like Facebook. I don’t think Donald Trump is responsible for this asshole and his misogynistic comments. But I sure as hell blame him for making it acceptable to talk like that to a woman.

I have been researching on where to find information regarding both candidates that was unbiased. Politifact is where I landed. This website is a Pulitzer Prize winner. They are run by editors and reporters from the independent newspaper Tampa Bay Times. They fact check politicians. And they awarded Donald Trump’s campaign this:
http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/article/2015/dec/21/2015-lie-year-donald-trump-campaign-misstatements/

A lot has been said about the third party vote. I am sure I will get shit for saying this but I believe for the 2016 presidential election, it is a wasted vote. If you look at the polls, Hillary and Donald are neck and neck (feels like we are living in a fucking Black Mirror episode, let me tell you). Donald got more votes in a Republican contest than anyone on record during the primaries. I get it, you want to use that vote to express who you think is the best candidate. But let’s be honest. Your candidate isn’t going to win. If they had a chance it went away a long time ago. So please say goodbye to Jill Stein and Gary Johnson (do we really want somebody in the Oval office who doesn’t know where Aleppo is?). Hillary isn’t perfect. But holy crap do you really want somebody running our country who has the temper of a toddler (better temperament my ass), acknowledges that he thinks he is smart because he hasn’t paid taxes, continues to lie about things he has said in the past, sees women as objects and nothing more, and who has never held a position in politics EVER?

I realize that this post won’t be read by a lot and that those who do have already made up their mind. And that some will “But Hillary…” me to death. But as someone who cares deeply about this country and wants to leave it a better place for her kids, I ask that you PLEASE do your research before November 8th and vote.

I will leave you with this clip from Last Week Tonight with John Oliver about who is the right candidate:

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Posted in Word Therapy

Romance

     She is in a movie theater on Wilshire Blvd in Los Angeles. It is a Thursday night in May, 2001. There are rows and rows of seats with an aisle running down the middle. The rows are separated exactly in half by the patterned carpet. The air conditioning is running, giving her a chill. She is excited. The room starts to fill up with moviegoers, and with that comes noise. Most have popcorn, M&Ms, soda, and nachos. Anticipation and loud speaking patrons make her antsy.

     A few minutes later it is dark and the screen lights up. David Bowie’s Nature Boy is being sung by Toulouse-Lautrec, a slow and somber melody. A typewriter is being used while somebody is crying. It is 1899 in Paris. The buildings are stark brown, grey, and black, contrasting with the vividness of red and the midnight blue sky. This is unlike anything she has ever seen before.

     As the movie progresses we learn of the love between Christian and Satine. They sing songs the audience knows, in a way that makes them grin, clap, and shout with joy. The audience goes wild every time a new one begins. The energy never wavers, the crowd is loving it. She is so happy, squeezing the man’s hand that she is there with. When a fairy comes on screen and offers our hero absinthe, the man laughs. She loves that laugh, knowing he is enjoying the film.

     When the ending comes, tears are streaming down her face. She doesn’t bother to wipe them away, a reminder of all the emotions she has felt. She hasn’t just seen a movie, she has experienced it. 15 years later, it is still her favorite film.

     When I was a kid I thought romance was having your high school crush come pick you up in a red Porsche 944 at your sister’s wedding with The Thompson Twins playing in the background. I wanted to be swept off my feet by a boy who made me feel breathless.

     The man who gave me the above experience is my husband. He showed me that night what true romance is: Having somebody love and know you well enough to give you an experience that is pure happiness. Curtis has done that for me over and over again throughout our 17 years of dating and 10 years of marriage.

     Happy Anniversary Baby. Thank you for all the romance, love, and friendship you give me every day. I love you.

anniversary-picture

Stephanie

Posted in Good Things, Word Therapy

Happy

Every couple of weeks I go to post a picture or an anecdote regarding my everyday life on Facebook.  I craft a caption for the photo or make sure I haven’t missed any words in my story. I ask myself questions: Am I humble bragging (probably)? Am I sharing a part of my life that will just make my friends uncomfortable? Does anybody really care? Most of the time I post and throw caution to the wind. I try not to check for reactions, the need for validation strong. These Facebook posts are how I feel every time I sit down to write.

I love to write. I don’t think I am good at it but I want to be. The voices in my head tell me I’m too old to be a successful writer or that I am not capable of writing anything meaningful. My happy pills (blog post on that coming later) are helping to keep those thoughts down to a faint whisper. So I am going to write for me first. The following keeps me going:

Song: Move by Saint Motel:

 “Head, shoulders, knees, toes, look alive it’s time to go..”

Movie Trailer: Collateral Beauty

I didn’t even get a buildup for my tears, they were instant.

Binge: Penny Dreadful

This show is perfect to binge as the weather starts to cool down and in preparation for my favorite month of the year: October. It has Dorian Gray, Victor Frankenstein, vampires, and other monsters I have yet to encounter. I just finished Seance from season 1 and my mouth is still hanging open.

App: Duolingo

I am giving Spanish a second try (first time was in college) and so far I am having fun. Now if I could just roll my Rs without doing this.

These will get me through the week and hopefully those voices will shut the hell up so I can write something that will become something else.