30 August 2012

Cross One Off The List

Today I came to a realization. If I had to choose how my life would end, it would NOT be by over eating junk food. I repeat: death by junk food would be bad!!! What a miserable way to go... I am crossing that one off my list because this day has been truly awful. Two doughnuts, two cheese burgers, a carton of fudge brownie ice cream (hey, it was small!), most of a package of chocolate covered cashews, and a Dr Pepper later, I can feel my insides revolting! I will now begin a 7 day cleanse... :(

21 August 2012

Hate (and boy, could this blog have the potential to get me some!) Part 2

Sorry, I thought it would be better to take this in two parts so that people don't get overwhelmed.

Now, when it comes to Chick-Fil-A, I have never eaten there.  I hear they have good chicken, and I hear that their chicken is rubbish.  I have no personal opinion on their chicken.  I think we can all agree that the argument of a "biblical" definition of marriage is complete crap because there is almost one of everything when it comes to different marriages in the bible.  The argument we are coming across is the traditionally accepted western world's definition of marriage which is that of one man and one woman.  Yes?  Good, let's carry on then.

To be clear, I understand where people are coming from with their rage against the CEO of Chick-Fil-A.  I know about having my feelings hurt.  I also know about hurting people's feelings.  I would take a guess that unless you are Jesus (and if you are, I'd love to meet you!!!), you've probably hurt someone's feelings at one point in your life.

There was a statement made where Mr Cathy said he didn't support gay marriage.  (Note, he did not say he hated people who were gay, lesbian, transgender, or bisexual, nor did he say he wouldn't serve or hire or in any other way discriminate against them in his business dealings.)  Here's the thing.  He has his beliefs and he is just as entitled to them as anyone else is to theirs.  I don't think it should matter if you agree with them.  He wasn't asking you to.  To me, what it comes down to, is that an imperfect human being (Wait, we all understand what it's like to be one of those, right?) said something that was insensitive and hurt people's feelings.

Now, I do think that it wasn't the best idea he ever had saying that the way he did.  When you are a public figure, you should be more conscientious about how/what/where you say things.  I think this is true for both the conservative people and the liberal people.  Do I think what he said was smart, absolutely not!  I think it was idiotic for him to say what he did, how he did.  However, I support his right to say it.  That is what the biggest issue to me is.  He said something, and his first amendment rights were attacked!  I feel terrible that people had their feelings hurt, but  I think that the CEO should have every right to say that if that's how he feels.

Now on the same token there are LOADS of stupid things said all the time.  Case and point, when the Dixie Chicks decided to bash President Bush.  Was it smart?  Well, I suppose if you think pissing off your main demographic is smart, than yes, yes it is.  I don't think it was very smart though.  Do I support their right to say it though?  As dumb as it might be, I totally do!  I still think that they should be able to have those opinions and they should be able to say them if that's what they want to do.

What happened after the fact was, in my opinion silly and childish though!  First, there was the boycott of Chick-Fil-A.  Now, if there are ethical/legal reasons to not support the company, ok.  Be educated and informed and you should be making those decisions.  I just don't think it should be made over a person's personal feelings or beliefs.  I just don't.  Even if I don't share those opinions, it's the opinion of that person and he/she is entitled to them.  If you choose to not go because of someone's opinion, you look like you are throwing a tantrum and that is what children do.  The same goes for those who then put forward the support Chick-Fil-A day.  I kind of get that, because after all of the bad press, they needed something to boost them back up, but still.  Most of the time, places recover alright after a mistake like that and it probably wasn't necessary.   I really don't think most people were going to Chic-Fil-A because they hate gay people though.  I think that most of the people who were going went for one of 2 reasons.  1- there was so much bashing happening to the chain that they wanted to support it because they like the chicken or 2- they were supporting Cathy's right to have his opinions and that it shouldn't be the reason you don't support the company.

I love my friends who are working for what they want.  I love my gay friends and my straight friends, but I don't love that when someone says they support gay marriage, it's being a forward thinker, and when someone says they don't it's being a terrible human being who should be hurt and humiliated and they should never be allowed into society again.  You have to recognize that hate is hate and it is still hate if it is coming from the "forward thinkers"

It makes me feel like if I have an opinion, should I be afraid to say it?  Will I get my head ripped off if it's not what people want to hear?  I think that anytime people have a problem with something it's become so acceptable to attack the person(s) who said or did it, and I feel like it's fostering some serious resentment.  To me, it feels like it's only ok for certain people to say what they feel and in fact, it's only ok for people to feel certain ways.  If you don't think the same way, you're a bad person.  I don't want people to hate me because they don't agree with me.  I don't hate other people because I don't agree with them.  I don't agree with polygamy, but I don't hate them.  I don't believe in the Hindi gods and goddesses, but I don't hate the people who do.  I love them and I don't know why there is so much antagonism!  Why can't people calm down and just talk about things, then be ok if they don't agree with each other?

A friend of mine posted this on her Facebook a while back and I really like it.  I think it says perfectly what I think on the subject.  "To let go isn’t to forget, not to think about, or ignore. It doesn’t leave feelings of anger, jealousy, or regret. Letting go isn’t about winning or losing. It’s not about pride and it’s not about how you appear, and it’s not obsessing or dwelling on the past. Letting go isn’t blocking memories or thinking sad thoughts, and doesn’t leave emptiness, hurt, or sadness. It’s not about giving in or giving up. Letting go isn’t about loss and it’s not about defeat. To let go is to cherish the memories, but to overcome and move on. It is having an open mind confidence in the future. Letting go is learning and experiencing and growing. To let go is to be thankful for the experiences that made you laugh, made you cry, and made you grow. It’s about all that you have, all that you had, and all that you will soon gain. Letting go is having the courage to accept change, and the strength to keep moving. Letting go is growing up." 


Hate (and boy, could this blog have the potential to get me some!) Part 1

This (and the next) blog post is going to be dealing with some very sensitive, topics.  It is not my intention to hurt feelings so I ask you to please read on with an open mind and a kind heart, and if you choose to comment, keep it civil and keep it clean.  I won't post comments that I feel are hurtful or inappropriate.

It has been nearly a month since the shooting in Aurora, CO, as well as the Chick-Fil-A statement and the back lash that came after it, but I have a lot to say and I wanted to say it well.

First, I would like to express my sympathy to the survivors who were hurt and those who were killed in the Aurora, CO shooting and their families.  I hesitate to call them victims, because I feel that carries a defeatist mentality, and that is not my position to impose that on someone.  You get to choose how you react to things, and so far I think that there has been a really positive reaction to an obviously terrible situation.  Bravo!  I would also like to commend those who are choosing to not glorify the shooter by saying his name.  He doesn't deserve to have the celebrity status, and I will not be dignifying him with the use of his name either.

I would also like to take this moment to express my sympathy for the family of the shooter.  By all accounts, they seem to be normal people who do their best to be good people, raise good children, and contribute to society.  His father is the manager of a software company and his mother is a nurse.  They did their best to raise him in a good environment and give him the best that they could.  Now they are living any parent's nightmare.  They didn't choose to do something terrible.  In all reality, they probably didn't have any idea that he was going to do what he did, so there was truly nothing that they could have done to prevent it.  Now, in essence, they are being blamed for "not doing enough" and "how could they have allowed this to happen!?"  How do we think they could have stopped their ADULT son who didn't live with them?  He didn't even live in the same state as they do!  These are decent people who did nothing wrong, but became instant villains and who have lost their son in the same moment.  Grieving parents who are being blamed for aiding a horrific crime that they didn't know would happen.  I'm sure they were just as shocked and horrified (if not more so) than the rest of us.

I have read reports from the families of the Columbine shooters as well as those from families of serial killers and it's almost equally difficult for them to cope with the situation as it is for the families of those who were hurt.  They want to say how incredibly sorry they are for the things their family member has done, but they don't know how to do it because people automatically hate them for being related to the person in question.  They want to see that justice comes to the people who were wronged, but they know that no amount of "justice" will ever bring back the loved one who is gone, or the person who won't ever be able to have a normal life again.  Yet, in many of these situations, they don't hate their loved one.  Of course they hate the terrible thing that they did, but not the person.  To the families, they are still sons, daughters, fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, etc.  So how can we be so hard on them for standing by their loved one?  I don't think I could abandon the people I loved in that situation.  I can't even imagine how much they must be hurting and I seriously doubt if they will ever be listed on any survivors list.

As a member of the costuming community, I am saddened by the shooting not only because it's a horrible event, but because of the blame that is being given to those who participate in these events.  I am part of a group called HEROIC Inc made up of people who dress in costumes of super heroes, villains, princesses, etc. and attend charity events and promotional events to entertain and to make people (especially children) happy.  I have only been involved with them for a short time, but I have been able to meet some of the most incredible, giving people I know.  They do these events with no compensation, they pay for all of their own costumes, and they give their time (lots of their time in some cases) to raise money for charity and just to make people happy.  They do promotional things as well, where costuming and playing the character is something that they do for their (and other's) enjoyment.  As far as any reports that I have seen have said, the shooter is not and has never been a member of the cosplay (costume player) community, so it is quite unfair to blame us (them) for the shootings.

(This was made by my friend Charity Mack and her podcast Hello, Sweetie!)

There have been some theaters that have chosen to not allow costumed characters at their movies any longer.  I hope they realize that they are taking away something that their customers enjoy.  Quite frankly, I'm a little surprised that they haven't said there will be no more midnight showings.  I truly hope that it is something that will be only last in the moment of panic that happens right after a traumatic event occurs and that when things start to be resolved we will be able to do it again.

As a member of the human community, I think this is an absolutely vital moment to not let fear and hate win.  We must not allow one person to control us!  I don't mean it is something that we ignore.  Heavens no, but if we let his actions propel us into a state of fear and if we let that fear change how we live our lives, then we let him win.  We ALLOW him to take that control of us.  I know that I personally, will not stand for that!  I will not let my life be changed by someone's actions!  I choose to make the world a better place by not allowing the terrible actions of others to dictate how the world works.

14 August 2012

Do you ever...

Decide to write a blog so you look busy while you're waiting for someone/something and happen upon a terribly funny situation? Yep, that just happened! I was waiting in front of a restaurant and a couple comes out. The conversation goes as follows:
Him: I had a great time
Her: mm hmm
Him: We should get get together again sometime and get to know each other better.
Her: Oh! Um, ok...

*Awkward side hug*

I nearly died! Unfortunately, then they got too far away to hear well. Ah good times! :)

06 August 2012

Bicyclists or The Blog That Made People Start Hating Me

First, for the purpose of this post, I would like to make a few things clear.  1) I actually really enjoy bicycling and I think it is an EXCELLENT form of exercise. 2) I will be using the term "most cyclists" and I mean most of the cyclists I have been involved with or seen.  If you don't fit into this generalization, or if you haven't had the same experiences that I have, that's great for you!  Please remember that I HAVE NOT SEEN ALL CYCLISTS and this is my blog, so if you disagree, write your own blog post about it because I am writing about my experience and you don't have to read my blog if you don't want to.  Pretty easy fix.  Right then.  On to the post.

My uncle was hit by a car this weekend during an annual bicycle ride my family organizes each year from Afton, Wyoming to Jackson, Wyoming.  He is definitely banged up, but thankfully he will recover.  Now, I don't know the specific details of the accident, but it serves to solidify and to provide evidence to my position which is that bicycles have no business occupying the same area as vehicles!!!  I don't care what anyone says, while the law states that bicycles are vehicles, BICYCLES ARE NOT THE SAME AS VEHICLES!  If you have a cyclist and a pedestrian who collide, they will both probably come out with some scrapes/bumps/bruises but the likelihood of a fatality or a serious injury is slim.  However, put a cyclist and a vehicle in a collision and the cyclist is going to get HOSED every single time!  I have come across the argument that motorcycles have the same problem as bicycles.  This is partially true, but they have more speed than a bike, they DO have more power than a bike, they are more grounded than a bike, and they are almost always more protected by their clothing because they almost never ride half naked like cyclists do at times.

Now, I realize that I may seem a little harsh or unreasonable but let me be clear.  I have a large number of family members and friends who are cyclists and I worry like crazy about them ALL OF THE TIME!!!  The biggest issue is that given how cyclists behave when I'm around, I would venture to guess that most cyclists haven't even taken the time and effort to read and learn what their rules of the road are!  Allow me to provide that link for you http://www.udot.utah.gov/main/uconowner.gf?n=55126312117091464 (The laws start on page 8 in case you are wondering.  Go ahead, read away!  I'll bet you never have before.)  When you finish reading them, let's talk about how I rarely have a cyclist signal what their intention is, I have nearly hit cyclists who go from sidewalk (where I frankly think they belong, even though it's not recommend or even legal in some places, so let's not even get started on that!) and dive straight into traffic, and cyclists who insist on riding down the middle of whatever lane they fancy and blaze around between lanes like they own the road.  Let's also discuss how on almost a daily basis I see cyclists ignore traffic signals and stop signs because they don't seem to feel like waiting for the light to change, or putting down a foot while they wait.  Because that's neat and totally safe!

Every single time I am driving downtown Salt Lake City, and I come to a stop light I am terrified that I'll go to make a turn and have a cyclist come flying up on my side and I will flatten them!  This is one of the traffic laws for cyclists that I find ignored with such a crazy regularity, it is scary!  I would like to quote:

"At busy intersections, do not advance to the stop line by passing cars on the right—unless you are in a designated bike lane. (Even if you are in a bike lane, be cautious of vehicles swerving into the bike lane to pass on the right.) If there is no bike lane, wait in the through lane or turn lane with the other vehicles."  [Last bullet point on page 8]

Really!?  I think I have seen that particular law obeyed one time.  ONCE!!!  I am talking to all of you cyclists!  Get with it!  We can't see everything at once, just like you can't see everything at once and you are a lot smaller than a car, so chances are you can see the cars better than they can see you.  Just saying.

I would like to make a point about riding at night.  It is difficult to see bicycles at night.  That is just a fact.  It is recommended/required that cyclists have reflectors and headlights/taillights if you are going to ride at night, but let me say this.  If you plan on having a super bright, strobe light on the front of your bike and you plan to ride into traffic (incorrect decision by the way, even though it happens ALL THE TIME) you might get run over.  If you do that right into my line of vision, I am going to have a full blown seizure and then I'm not going to feel nearly as bad when you are a pancake.

Now, I know that there are some situations where the drivers of cars aren't as courteous as they should be.  I'm sorry about that, but there is nothing I can do about that.  I do know, however, that I have had several experiences where I have had cyclists who have been particularly aggressive and or discourteous toward me.  Even in situations where I have been specifically looking out for them.  There was one situation where I nearly hit a cyclist, but it was an equal liability situation and I can say that I was genuinely SHOCKED at how she behaved.  It was a disgrace for cyclists and she should be ashamed of herself.

I'm not perfect.  I don't always see everything, but I do try very hard and I think I see a lot more than some people because I am always thinking how it could be my family or my friend who is in danger.  You know what though, cyclists need to start taking responsibility.  They need to start learning and doing, what they should be doing, and if you want the cars to share the road, act like it.  You are responsible for yourself.  I am responsible for myself and for you, so take that into consideration the next time you decide to be a colossal asshat by flipping me off and yelling profanities when I give you some extra space as I pass your sorry butt instead of riding on top of you.

01 August 2012


I am either hypothermic, or sweating profusely today. There is no middle range. Dear body, please even out or I may loose my mind!
Yours truly,

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