Friday, June 26, 2015

The Time Feminism Forces Me to Defend a...Palin

So today my Facebook feed and news outlets have two rivaling headlines. 

First and most importantly, SCOTUS has effectively shut down all those idiots terrified that Mark and Steve's marriage, or Jane and Sally's, will somehow threaten their own heterosexual homes. And to the national endorsement of equality for people who want to marry, I say YAY it's about fucking time. 

Second, and somewhat more disturbing to me, is the news that Bristol Palin is knocked up again outside marriage. It's not that she's pregnant or that she's not married that bothers me: I could not possibly care any LESS about her sex life or the products thereof. It's the really horrifying hypocrisy I'm seeing by "feminists": a sort of disgusting glee in seeing the poster child for abstinence education brought low by her own sexuality. 


Let's set aside for a moment the pure nasty and gross behavior involved in smugly shaming a public figure for something that some consider a mistake (I say some because hello, not everyone considers pregnancy a mistake in or out of a legally bound relationship). 

Let me also be clear that I find Sarah Palin utterly disgusting for her politics, and I think abstinence education one of the worst disservices conservative politicians have forced upon teens.  Those are both entirely different posts. 

I pretty firmly believe if you call yourself feminist you don't get to judge another woman's sexuality, PERIOD. 

That means no slut shaming. EVER. 

That means no side-eye about women who have multiple partners, women who have children on their own, women who are completely asexual, women who are in a traditional marriage, women who buy toys, women who take birth control, women who ARE IN CHARGE OF THEIR OWN SEX ORGANS.

No subtle or overt blaming the victim of a sexual crime (she was drunk/smoking pot/on X/dressed like a whore) because deep down you're relieved that it didn't happen to you. 

No moral high-horse "we must SAVE them" attitude about anyone who voluntarily uses their body for money: that includes any sort of modeling, escorts, prostitution, dancing of any kind, porn, etc. (obviously, this point is barring underage or forced/trafficking crimes: I said voluntarily on purpose).  
And no snarky smug "she got what she deserved" judging of an adult woman in her mid-20's who gets pregnant outside marriage. Ugh. 

First, by all accounts I've been able to find, Bristol Palin was paid to do abstinence speaking from the perspective of having been a teen-mom. I don't agree with the abstinence only message in any way, but I can certainly see how that message might be something a 17 year old who'd gotten pregnant by mistake would be willing to speak about. I may not like her choice in message, but I appreciate her willingness to WORK in some way, and I don't judge her choice in which to do so. 

Second, this is not a teenager. Yes, she publicly took an "abstinence pledge" in 2009 and really, it's none of my business whether she stuck to it or not before this. Honestly, I don't care: her bedroom is her business, and she's certainly not the first conservative politician/minister/"moral" public figure to be "caught" living a different life in private than she does publicly. But hey, I know I haven't grown with experience since I was a teen: have you? In fact, I think if you polled a handful of people on the street most would assume a 24 year old woman is sexually active in this day and age: it's not that fucking weird that birth control failed and she got pregnant again. It's pretty likely that because of the pledge she took her abstinence only speaking engagements are over, so isn't that sort of a self-fulfilling unemployment arena? 

I guess I just don't really see any benefit (to me or anyone else) in jumping on a bandwagon of "neener neener you aren't perfect" nastiness just because I don't agree with her politics.  

Third, for those conservatives who insist that a woman's sex organs MUST be owned by a man through marriage contract before creating life, SHE WAS FUCKING ENGAGED, for Gods' sake. Other than the really uber-conservative sects, does anyone really expect an engaged couple to be abstinent? 

As an aside, boy you babies-in-marriage-only types really are going to have issues if male ownership of uterii is the only proper way to have a family, because I'm pretty sure SCOTUS just tossed that shit right out the that it's finally legal for two uterii or two penii to be married without the opposite sex involved at all. And that's just awesome. 

What's horrifying about being caught here is the same people who rail against conservative/abstinence education are the ones crowing about the public shaming of a woman's sex life and her "fall from grace." Um, sorry, but sex and pregnancy don't equal a fall from grace: they pretty much just equal an addition to her family and most likely a career change in her case. So what? At what point do we as a society stop judging mothers by the circumstances of their pregnancy like we have any right to moralize their bodies and choices? 

For the record, I'm thoroughly grossed out that I'm in a position to defend a Palin, but I don't live her life, and I refuse to judge any woman's sexual choices. I suppose as a thought experiment it's good to test the boundaries of my insistence on non-judgement, but ultimately this whole news blitz and social media ishiness just put a bad taste in my mouth. 

On a Friday. 

I'm not impressed. 

Thursday, June 25, 2015

No, I Don't Know Why I Think This Shit Up.

So...remember I said I found the super creepy hanging teething ring with keys on the closed section of the trail? (Yes yes, I admit it's POSSIBLE it wasn't in any way disturbing to other people and it's only a sign of my own undiagnosed psychosis* that makes ME think of horror movies. Just go with it for a sec.)

Yeah. There's another one, on a signpost not far from where I found the last set.

Yes, the original set is still hanging there, a bright little "oh look, someone lost their toy" invitation to step off the trail into who knows what and be eaten , um, sucked into an alternate zombie dimension, no...sacrificed to a horribly angry gnome Ok I'm stopping now.

Is this a kind passerby helping some inept stroller-pusher who can't keep track of their toys (I'm the aunt to a toddler and a near-1-year-old: I know that's infernally difficult what with all the excited flailing. Mine and theirs, of course.).

Is it a deceptively sinister warning notice? STOP HERE or lose your...yeah I got nothin' here. Maybe I should push a stroller next time I hike and find out, except 1) I'm lazy, 2) I don't have a stroller, and 3) I'm already hyper aware of ticks and mosquitoes...I don't want any actual reason (like a stroller stuck on the trail) to stop and become a blood-sucking buffet.

My personal suspicion is it's some smartass finding inventive new ways to say "bite me" to other hikers.

Some OTHER smartass, people. I wouldn't be creeped out about the hanging baby toys if I was the one doing it.


*Dear mental health professional, if you're reading this and diagnosing me, please keep it to yourself. For the most part, I enjoy my brand of weird. NORMAL IS BEIGE: fuck that shit.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

SpiderFerns Are a Thing Now??

Once in a while people ask where I get ideas for stories, which I think is funny because I can't STOP coming up with stupid and horrifying combinations in my brain that could be a terrible story. I just don't usually share most of them...I'm weird enough already. 

But while downloading pics from my phone tonight (because I'm out of space...again) I found these:
Either the Fern eats tarantulas, or it's breeding a nest of tarantula legs. 
This is a plant that I discovered at Grandma's farm while I was enjoying a quiet and only slightly-mosquito-filled moment on the porch swing. You know, in twilight those stupid leg-root-things look EXACTLY like a nest of furry tarantula legs. A LARGE NEST of them. They were directly behind my head.

It's possible the sound that escaped my yap wasn't entirely human.

I don't have a story for that one...just the sheer horror of stealthy SpiderFerns lying in wait for unsuspecting prey. Ugh.
That is a set of baby teething keys. 
I broke the rules on a hike the other day in the monstrously large park near my house. I wandered amiably along one of the closed trails (meaning, a large wooden "TRAIL CLOSED" sign across the path) because I chose to assume "closed" meant closed only to horses, not to people. That's not actually as odd as it sounds...the trails in this park ARE open to horseback riding...otherwise my assumption would just be foolish.

Anyway, in the far backwoods trail I came across a completely random baby teething toy tied to a tree. It was the only one around, hanging just off the trail. I was (and still am) creeped out. Why? Because that's no helpful person leaving someone's lost toy where it'll easily be was a CLOSED TRAIL. OBVIOUSLY this is the work of some sick serial killer, or worse some elemental creature intent on luring stupid women who go off-trail to their doom. There are several lakes in the park...I can't discount Lorelei. I watch horror movies, people...bad shit happens when people disturb hanging totems in the woods. I left it alone.

Also, I considered all the different disturbing scenarios surrounding those toy keys for the rest of my hike, and had a decent creepy story outlined in my head by the time I got back to the car.

Today someone posted something about Prometheus on my Facebook wall (yes, I should've been working). And yeah, he's on my list for a Myth post...which I'm terribly derelict in handling this summer. Anyway, the picture was a great eagle swooping down toward a nearly-naked Prometheus bound to a rock. Sad for Prometheus...I'm willing to presume it sucks a lot, having all your innards ripped out daily.

But I immediately wondered what happens when a normal creature eats God parts every day for a bazillion years? EVENTUALLY wouldn't some of the extraordinary features pass to the are what you eat and all that? What if the Eagle became aware from ingesting too much God-liver and started to feel sorry for Prometheus, or became friendly with him, or fell in love? Hey, Zeus changed into all sorts of beasts to spawn demigods with human's not out of the realm of possibility in Greek myth.

This post has absolutely no point at all...I have no finalized story for any of these, just random ideas that float around in the brainpan when I let things wander about. There is no "where do you find story ideas"'s just a product of the messed up way I think.

Be glad 99% of it never crosses from random thought to something communicated outside my's weird in there.

Also as a side note, I've noticed a plethora of people in the Eastern Bloc "finding" my blog lately. you know, Belarus, Ukraine, Czech Republic...yeah. Amazingly, the posts with certain labels or title key words are the ones viewed...and so I added some fun labels to this post just to prove that while I may occasionally use provocative words, it still isn't porn. Sorry to disappoint, Ukrainians. 

Friday, June 12, 2015

Drama Queens Love Drama

This is not a funny post, because I've hit my fucking limit.

Our society has a rabid hunger for armchair quarterbacking destruction. The tabloids that sell best usually have a superstar's epic failure of some sort plastered all over the cover. Reality TV gets the highest ratings when people are the biggest assholes to each other (and themselves). Everyone seems to watch tragedy and sadness and terrible things in another person's life and secretly rub their grubby mental hands together in silent glee that it isn't happening to THEM.

In absence of an arena to watch gladiators tear each other apart, we settle for the public dramas of "stars" and the private dramas of our peer groups, gossiping and giving advice as though we're experts in another's life. And really, what's better than sitting on the sidelines while your "friends" fall apart so you can offer sage advice about how awful the other person is and how you never thought it'd last, and all the while be glad it isn't you?

Sounds pretty fucking sick, doesn't it?

Husband and I are separated and back in Minnesota, and it's SO VERY INTERESTING which people in our peer groups are actually supportive and which are condescendingly judging or providing asshole "advice" to either/both sides. Advice like "you better take him/her for everything they have, because otherwise you'll end up with nothing" or "stop talking to/supporting because he/she's just using you" and worse, even more vile things. If I take a step back it's very similar to the accident, actually: marriage issues seem to bring out real traits normally hidden behind social graces in people. Some of those real traits are beyond awesome. Some are utterly disgusting.

Whether we stay together or split up, I have loved the man for over a decade. He's been one of my best friends for nearly fifteen years. I still love him, regardless of our issues. Issues which are between us and guess what? You haven't lived them, therefore you have no right to comment upon them unless I specifically ask for your advice. I will still love him and be his friend regardless of the outcome of our separation. And so, to take a page from the best example I can think of I will say the following publicly and with as much clarity as I can muster.


If you badmouth my husband in any way to me, for any reason (including under the sick guise of "but I want what's best for you," as though anyone knows what's best for me besides ME) you will have revealed yourself to be exactly the type of person I don't want in my circle of friends.  PERIOD.

You want to gossip behind my back, that's fine: that's up to you. Have fun. When I hear about it (as gossip inevitably travels) my statement above stands.

Tomorrow I'll try to be funny. Today I'm just angry.