Archive for January, 2010

The Right Kind of Asshole: Me

Thursday, January 21st, 2010

There are lots of assholes who you want to associate with as much as you’d like to be fucked with Hitler’s dick.  And then there are assholes like me.

If you cut me off, I’ll curse you and rip out pig entrails to hex you for the rest of your goddamned life in about fifteen seconds before I drop it and skip to the next fast track on my CD or MP3 player.  If the hex works, I’m not sorry.  It’s not my fault the supernatural has suddenly become very responsive to atheists now is it?  No, I’m not taking the blame for shit that can’t be accounted for with double blind tests or pure laboratory observation.

I wear bright colors in the winter.  Strike that, I wear a bright yellow JMU sweatshirt and matching ballcap.  I’m pretty sure I can’t stare in the mirror because I couldn’t take it either but the static electricity or something in this outfit is great.  I get all charged up.  My coworkers cannot drink enough coffee to handle it.

I don’t get the fat positive movement precisely.  I’ve been blessed with a good lottery of genes.   But I’m always skipping meals and hopping around and I get bummed out when I hit 240 lbs and then I do something about it.  I’ve been meaning to be more active anyway.  But it’s not because being fat or abnormally shaped is the ultimate issue.  It’s because I secretly think I’m going to go rock climbing some day and I’ll slip with one hand before I’ve secured a line and the other hand’s strength and associated muscles will be all that saves me from doom.  Alternatively, I’ll die of some new millennial cancer at 100.  However, I do get bullshit about ideal skinny fuckers.  There’s a broad broad range to beautiful and healthy.  I also see fitness folks with all sorts of worn out body parts and I’m pretty sure that we should shoot for a life somewhere in the middle if at all possible. And yet this kind of humor makes me laugh.

But I do get the atheist movement and it’s kind of related.  It shouldn’t take any effort to describe the position of not believing anything supernatural.  I don’t run into many problems because we’re surrounded all the time by the natural and the supernatural has a really hard time finding ways to make us consider phenomenon to be unnatural in the first place.  We’ve learned from women looking at puppies and men shooting lovers’ lovers that emotions do not make good reason, so feeling awed by the supernatural is meaningless to me.  I explain it because it’s revolutionary and it’s so fucking hilarious that not believing anything is considered anything other than a default position.

Accepting people I guess should be like that too.  I guess I can follow that much of the feminist, black, gay, or fat positive movements.  Maybe I can lump them as pro-outsider movements.  Women aren’t outsiders.  Atheists aren’t outsiders.  So on and so forth.  That shit should default to being okay.  We should default to accepting our neighbors even though they will have some crazy batshit quality.  I’ve got mine.  I’m an asshole.

It’s all fun and games if nobody gets shot.  I get offended sometimes easily and sometimes I’m doing the offending.  That’s cool.  But then folks walk up and self-detonate and the conversation becomes risky.  Shop’s have been bombed for carrying books… in America.  I had to add “Rushdie” to my Google search to find the link because there are several other pipe bomb scares that got in the way!  I’ll never kill you, my friend.  Give me a way to exit safely, and I’ll return the favor.

The friendly atheist is a nice guy who likes moderate believers and sees them as allies.  He’s the friendly one.  I’m the asshole.  Blogging about your belief means you have an opinion I think is shit.  You get to keep it.  And I get to keep saying it’s shit.  That’s how the system works.  And then you can blog about how my opinion about your blog is shit if you want and so on and so forth.

Fuck your beliefs.  You shouldn’t give too much concern to mine either.  Be true to yourself and provide some standard consideration to your fellow citizens despite what your crazy-pants opinions are.  Killing might be relatively okay to you, but it’s still bullshit in a way greater than just an opinion kind of way for example.  The same goes slightly for alternative medicine, faith healing, and Scientology.  Bullshit, all of it.

My ultra issue is how people have the ability to live in a country but live in a way that secludes them from greater society.  I think people need to mingle because that gives everybody the best chance.  It also gives your kids the best chance to self correct for whatever you fucked them up with.  And don’t give me that “I don’t fuck up my kids look”.  You do.  Everybody does.  That’s why we give kids greater information access and hope their inquisitive nature can help patch the holes.

Fuck the Ten Commandments.  Fuck the Republican party.  Fuck Christianity.  Fuck Islam.  But to the folks who identify, don’t worry, we can still hang out and I probably won’t bring these issues up because I also have many other things to talk about.  And you can disagree with me.  But you can’t ignore that there is a rising tide of folks who don’t think traditional institutions of faith and family work and you can’t assume we’re a nation of believers.   You’re just one of the many kinds of Americans.  I’m a kind too, I’m the right kind of asshole.  I’m probably wrong about so much, but when you ask for my opinion, I will honestly give it every single time.  It’ll sound myopic because it is.  It’s my individual opinion.  Thanks for asking.  No, I don’t agree with yours and yes, I am curious about it all the same, please tell me.

But if you’ve been reading, you know that.

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Fly In My Ear

Wednesday, January 20th, 2010

My soon to be ex-wife has virtues, but not the full set.  She calls me yesterday to warn me about my girlfriend whom she doesn’t know due to circumstances closely related to her soon-to-be status.  This is a reaction to that.

That’s not a fly in my ear
that you’re hearing, my dear
That’s a person I’ve held close
for over a year
That’s not a fly in my ear
Though you claim that it’s clear
That it’s my eyes that don’t see
Do you even know me

The jealous think the non-jealous don’t care
The non-jealous don’t care what you think you’re not there
The loyalties explain any hostility claimed
Emotions are naive as choices lay bare

That’s not a fly in my ear
Though you say it, my dear
When I’m talking to you,
it’s her secrets I bear.
She’s a person I was quite selective about
Natural progression after moving you out.

What did you think divorce
was all about anyway.
We can be friendly enough
But there’s a way where we’re enemies
I was the the guy in the car like a Kennedy
You stole from the knoll
As I bled out for the world to see

I know we grew up on the same street together
I know that we weathered a bit like whatever
There was no fly in the design
when you left me behind
When we open our eyes
Love isn’t blind
When we open our eyes
we should open our minds.

I’m not as stressed as you might remember me then
should be impressed I’m approaching my kind of zen
Just because you slept with a lion surviving the den
Doesn’t mean he’s the beast.  You think you survived him?!

That’s not a fly in my ear
That’s a woman come near
She doesn’t have much to say
but her motions are clear
And no I don’t think I’ll be coming home dear
Things fell apart on their own
My work is done here.

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Talking Back To Tradition

Friday, January 15th, 2010

I don’t know whether to love or hate this week.  It’s taken a lot of energy but I feel rather engaged and I could handle just a little bit more if the week brings it on.  I guess I didn’t know this was the week that would take that level of commitment.  Today’s topic is about marriage.

Marriage has three components I can easily identify: romance, commitment, and tradition.  Romance can also include chemistry and I boil it down to how compatible two people are in small spaces together.   Commitment is the choice of the partners to stick it out along with a slightly fuzzy factor that rates their capability of actually doing that.  Tradition is the motherfucking beast upon which marriage is warped into an unusable form.  Ha.  Each partner comes from a culture and your region may impose a culture and these culture’s give you models for what a marriage should be.  Tradition is the sum of those examples in the lives of the partners.

Short term romance is easy.  The shortest term romance is almost a relief experience because we’re used to balancing our sexual/intimate interests with our respect and one person is feeling the energy of the other person and you determine mutually that you don’t know each other but it’s okay to get intimate and it’s like a dam coming down and you’re swept with it for the moment.  Middle term romance happens at a different time relative to the partners but it’s more grounded in the environment of the partners and their actual ways.  Middle term and longer romances are slightly, perhaps positively, hijacked by throw backs to the short term romance.  If you had sex on a civil war statue, then civil war statues might infiltrate your romance in the future because one way to play with romance is to use continuity.  I don’t know much about long term romance.  There are people I’ve known for a long time that are excellent people all around and with no reason to say “no” to their advances, I would definitely engage them in romance.  The safety and security have all been well established but maybe it’s just middle term romance after all.

Commitment is important because everybody goes crazy for different reasons.  Once we panic, humans don’t stay very rational in my opinion.  If I’m scared (does that happen?), hungry, worn out, fighting infection, dealing with many issues that are all different and hard to deal with one at a time, I can fail to appreciate the actual things my girlfriend is saying.  Yes, you’re right.  I wasn’t listening.  I wanted to yesterday but I don’t want to now and it’s nobody’s fault.  She returns the favor for having moments when she’s not as reasonable.  It’s obvious.  There are months and months and months of solid, grounded, relaxing, adult interactions and then there’s a week of the crazies.  It’s like her memory card is broken then too because the issues don’t go away until her crazies go away.  Failure to save.  It’s easy for me to see her crazies and hard to see my own.  I think I have them too and commitment is that decision made in advance to allow partners to get beyond the crazies.

Our crazies have been harmless.  But I think crazies can have people having sex with the wrong people.  It can have people spending or signing away fortunes for stupid things.  It can have people breaking their diet or even suicidal in some tragic cases.  There is a distinction I would like to make though.  Crazies are phases that are the minority of the experiences.  Unfortunately, I can’t just babysit crazy partners who are full blown, never stop crazy.  I mean I could but I’d get a partner on the side that slept in the same master bedroom.  I would need the support.

Tradition seems obvious because its hallmarks rest in the rituals of the individuals coming together.  Some traditions relate to holidays.  But some traditions relate to the valuation of roles that the partners assume.  Some traditions sabotage the relationship speed by suggesting that once you’ve had sex you are in some way immediately on the path to marriage.  Some traditions turn all that male romance off and tell the bitch to get back in the fucking kitchen and cook when she’s not squeezing out a newborn.  What’s worse is that some people won’t tell you that’s what is running through their mind.  They’ll figure you knew or else you wouldn’t have hung around because with the exception of your dumb-ass they have only dated mind-readers in the past (and look how well that worked).

My girlfriend reading this will be asking an honest question about this blog and if it’s related to her.  Yes and no.  Yes because I think she’s marriage material and I’m still going to be patient with getting a few life variables like debt and living circumstances worked out before I go planning the method of dropping the question.  No because even though my soon to be exwife doesn’t read this, it kind of relates to my experiences and these dudes she dates that are like “We’ve had sex, let’s marry”.  I know other women currently that seem like they get on that fast track easily as well but whom I’m not going to out on this blog and it’s about them too.  My girlfriend brought up the topic a few days ago, but other things kept to the theme resulting in this post.

Here’s the point and you can just start reading here if you’ve been glazing over reading the earlier portions.  Tradition will kill you and sleep in your guts to stay warm if you are not careful to find out the cultural markings of your partner AND to figure out the tendencies of your partner when your partner is not with you i.e. when my girlfriend actually doesn’t have to give a shit about my opinion, what are her preferences.  Because I can meaninglessly list a sequence of girls who can vouch for the fact that they catered quite excessively to me at their expense and right now only my current girlfriend is in the running for getting anything good as a result.  I expect people to also represent their own needs so I can be supportive.  They don’t because they ask me my opinion, “Do you want to do this or that?”  I want to do that.  I always prefer that.  But she wouldn’t have offered to do “this” if she hadn’t wanted too and if she really wants to do this one day she needs to be willing to say “I want to do this, will you come with me?”  Hell yes I will, I was waiting for you to ask.

And those things are cute and frustrating and sometimes relationship breakers.  These elements are those markings of traditional elements brewed into these people.  They won’t explain their traditions to me because traditions that we carry forward can feel very invisible and natural.  And previous to me they only dated mind-readers.  You’ll know what I mean because it’ll happen to you too.

Fuck tradition.  Fuck yours and fuck mine.  I do stupid things on occasion out of habit.  But I’m not going to ever be so stupid as to walk into marriage with an expectation of who we are after marriage. Day 1 of being married next time should feel like being day 2075 of knowing you and it just happened to have a rather awesome party and then you kissed me with cake all over your mouth.  It’s gonna be like that or it’s not going to happen.  The traditional elements that I carry are going to have to do a damn good job of hiding because I’m throwing them all away.

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Bitter Pill or Refreshing Enlightenment?

Thursday, January 14th, 2010

I feel compelled to say this after absorbing some of my environment over the last few weeks.

Relationships of any sort represent a complication of an otherwise simple existence.  Being casual friends is less impact than being a good friend.  Being casual lovers is less impact than being significant others.  Keeping up with distant relatives is lower maintenance than closer relatives much of the time.  In other words, the importance of relationships is a complication that requires time and energy.

As a brief tangent so you know I haven’t lost my mind, I’ll say relationships are wonderful when they are working right.  This is not my point.

The thing is, some people can’t see the forest for the relationships.  I can’t do this because I’ll lose the relationship with that.  It’s utter uselessness.  Sometimes those tangles help you prioritize because you can look at equivalent opportunities and think, I’d rather have the choice near this relationship.  Relationship is complexity.  Complexity has energy costs and upkeep costs in terms of time, resources, morale and all.

I’m an outgoing person.  I love having friends all over the world and if I’ve never met you I want to.  I love that shit and I eat it up.  But when I get overwhelmed from work or whatnot, I might disappear for awhile.  Most people I know understand that.  It’s not a slight when relationships are left unmaintained because most of us are busy doing other things most of the time.  I’m happy with the time I have with my friends and family and all, but I’m not at all concerned with the time I do not have with everyone.

But, man, even though I am happy with my significant relationship with my girlfriend, if stuff was not working, like seriously not working,  I would tell her and disengage on a dime.  I would communicate.  I would try to understand it.  It would represent a big shift and I’d try to account for that.  Hopefully we could both learn something from the experience but I would move on.  And it wouldn’t mean she was insignificant.  It would mean exactly that the complexity of the situation had moved beyond my willingness to maintain status quo.  She’s an awesome person.  That’ll never change.  Hopefully, our relationship status also never changes but I’m saying those are two distinct and different things.

And Babe, when you cease to want me, you need to kick me the fuck out.  Kick me out.  Do not celebrate holidays with me while unresolved issues broil within you.  Now you can have your secrets.  I can imagine wild romps that happened under alcoholic influence that shouldn’t have been done and won’t be repeated.  You can keep those secrets if they enter those situations.  But when you can’t trust me or don’t know what to do with me or have become convinced our paths will diverge that’s when the complexity of the situation has moved beyond.  You need to let me know.

People need to do that for each other.  Don’t die for an idea by letting a relationship suck up any more than you have to give.  Don’t do it.  I’m not going to do it.  I think my girlfriend is on the exact same page and the rest of you need to know that some of us think this is an alright way to be.

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When I rule the World

Friday, January 8th, 2010
  • I’ll have somebody update my blog for me
  • I’ll make a cabinet position for the guy who listens to folks who want to tell me why religion is great.  All that cabinet member has to do to get paid is nod his head and not go batshit crazy.  Women are welcome to apply.
  • The poet laureate will be a rapper of much talent.
  • James Joyce will be put to death publicly for being an author.  I’ll feel better for my 12th grade curriculum then.
  • I’ll make North Korea an anarchist nation.  It can’t get any worse.  They are probably amazing people once Kim Jung Ill gets out of the picture.
  • I won’t accept servants in place of friends.  You’ll still only see me hanging out with cool people
  • Rich people who give me lots of money now will be remembered.
  • I’ll entertain my people by publishing a ton and coming up with great ideas for software development efforts around the world
  • The Amish types will be forced to quit being anti-social
  • We’ll have Civil War reenactments by having loyal to a fault broke people defend the South and its shitty temp-constitution from the better organized and financed North.  Each time we’ll wonder who will win and be surprised when it’s the North.
  • Neil Gaiman will be my Secretary of State.  Stephen Colbert will be appointed Secretary of the United States of America.
  • The Topless Robot will be given to a girl to continue blogging.
  • Terry Brooks and Piers Anthony will have additional blurbs in their Wikipedia entry about how they influenced me.
  • I will watch football live.
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