Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Oh horror! Oh Christmas Shopping Horror!

 Today I was in a mall, I wanted to pick up a few things and get a haircut. I also decided to eat there as it would save me from having to cook at home later. The mall is completely decorated for the holidays and there was even some Christmas music playing. At the barbershop, which is right inside the mall, I couldn't help staring at the guy beside me, I could do it discreetly using the mirror, he was a cutie and he got a brush cut and his beard neatly trimmed, grrrrowl, unfortunately he didn't ask me to go home with him and make sweet sweet love to him all evening, darn I hate it when that happens.

 As I was coming out of the barbershop, something horrible began to take place. Maddie I need you to hold my hand as I tell this, I know you will understand me the most. Walking out into the mall, there was a terrible sound, I asked people if someone was playing the bagpipes... or actually if someone was murdering a goose by beating it to death with a set of bagpipes! People began to cover their ears and run for the doors, dogs in parked cars began to howl outside. There was something familiar with the sound and it grew louder. People suddenly ran for the doors screaming as blood began to run out of their ears. An elderly woman was shoved to the ground and as I tried to help her up, she heroically tried to wave me on, she said, "save yourself young man, leave me here, run for your life sweetie.... it's that fucking Mariah Carey song"!

 At the mention of the song, a woman near us screamed in horror and fainted. That's it, that was the sound, it wasn't someone stepping on a cat in heat, it was Mariah Carey singing "All I want for Christmas"! I grabbed the old lady and put her arm around my shoulder, I told her I'm not leaving anyone behind! Well except the lady who fainted because she was wearing a Grey's Anatomy sweatshirt, so you get what you deserve. As we were running for the doors, a young girl stopped us, she pointed to a speaker on the wall, without missing a beat, I took the old lady's cane and beat the sparks out of the speaker. Once outside the police had arrived, looking panicked, he asked what was happening. I just blurted out, "Mariahalliwantforchristmasscreaming"! Jumping as if he had been stung by a bee, he ran to the trunk of his car and pulled out a police issue shotgun. With a cool strong tone in his voice he said, "I've got this". He went in and took care of the speakers, then after twenty minutes they led out Martha, the holiday coordinator for the mall, in handcuffs. I don't know what will happen to her but I hope she ends up in a cell where they play Celine Dion's "Oh Holy Night" on a loop over and over until Easter as punishment.

 I bought cookies at the drug store because they were on sale for $1.99 and went home after, the end. This is a true story.... well the part about the cookies on sale is true.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Frienergy Conservation.

 The definition of frienergy conservation is "stopping yourself from placing any energy into a friendship that will go nowhere". I just made that up but it's a very real thing with myself and some other friends. I was having tea and homemade apple pie with a neighbor Saturday, we were discussing my recent explanation to her as to why I liked Abba, Glee and Olympic male diving events.

 She was wondering if she or her husband had done something or said something stupid to make me feel like I wasn't able to tell them about my fascination with the idea of Tarzan's loincloth falling off. I told her "no", that I have known for years I was able to tell them, that I actually came close to telling them a few times but I could feel myself suddenly become emotional and ditched the attempt.

 I love this couple, they are as close to being family as possible. Actually there is cross marriage between my family and theirs so we have a slight connection. I was explaining to her that I "test" people, I have been doing that for years now. It's simple, just bring up something in the news like some singer coming out as gay. Most people like to offer their opinion, you are either going to get, "I'm happy that person is free to live their life" or the person will look around to see if anyone is within ear shot and say, "I'm sick and tired of gay people shoving their lifestyle onto everyone else". Then I think, "okay noted", I'm not wasting my time getting to know you.

 I only invest time in friendships that I know will allow me to be me. I used to think that I may tell the person or I may not tell the person, either way I know it would not end the friendship. Lately however I feel that I am going to tell all my friends, it suddenly has become silly to me, not to tell my friends. I also look for attitudes towards other things as well, I have friends from other countries that I absolutely adore, so if I hear a mind closed to understanding people from other countries, I also don't bother, plus I find those people usually see everything in a negative light and it becomes a complete drain to be around them.

 When I explained that I test people to see if it's worth my while to continue with a friendship, she suddenly smiled and said that she does the exact same thing and completely understands. Both of us feel as we get older, there is no point in wasting the effort of maintaining a friendship or starting a friendship that will end. She went on to explain that now since they are older, she and her husband try to get close to people who are going to stay around as they all age. She told me of two couples that they are close friends with, she said how those two couples are getting ready to move across the country once they retire within the next year. They want to live on the west coast where it is warmer and also spend half the year down south. My neighbor went on to say that she has slowly been moving away from those couples and concentrating more on the friendships of people who are going to be around. What's the point of getting close to someone that will soon become nothing more than a twice a year postcard.

 People in the country see things differently but that's because we rely on friends and neighbors much more than in the city. An elderly couple in the country without a network of friends, is actually placing themselves in danger, so that is part of her thinking.

 As for myself I just want to be happy and a good way to do that is surround myself with some interesting people. Everyone I know fills in a gap for me and so I want that space to stay filled and the only way to do that is chose each piece carefully... as I fit them in.

Sunday, November 17, 2019

Thanks for the help... not!

 I was thinking about the odd relationship I had with my parents, especially when young. This was sparked by a friend who remarked how our parents taught us that emotions were bad, they were weak and something to conceal behind closed doors. Some of my friends grew up without a father and some ask what my relationship was like with my Dad, they wanted to know, did he talk with me about becoming a man etc?

 My Dad was a good man in his belief of duty to provide and take care of his family. He had a lot of input regarding things like honesty, integrity and definitely manners. He didn't have sit down discussions, it was pretty much, "don't ever let me catch you doing...." fill in the blank. He also warned me that if I ever embarrassed him by doing something that landed me in jail, don't bother calling because I could rot there for all he cared. I knew he meant it, so I behaved. There were other cues of his that I followed because I wanted to be a good person like him. He was big on responsibility, taking responsibility, acting responsibly, taking things seriously.

 The one thing though that he had zero and I mean absolutely zero input on, was me growing into a man, anything to do with sex, sexuality or male anatomy. Even just me the boy, growing into me the man, not one single word. That's strange to me, I don't know if he was too embarrassed to say anything, or just really hated the topic. I would have appreciated a heads up regarding puberty, I had no idea what the heck was going on in the beginning. There were times I was actually scared.

 The thing that is so strange about it, is you must remember I grew up on a farm. Often at 9, 10 or 11 years old, we would have the following conversation, "young-lad come here, I have to go to that meeting tonight, number 12 is tied in her stall, Mike the AI (AI= artificial insemination) technician is coming because she's in heat. Tell him she had slime running out of her vagina this morning, so she's ready to breed. Make sure he uses semen from AU78, that's a good bull". I might then ask does he have a second choice incase they don't have semen from AU78. This was a very common conversation between us, a little later he would even sometimes let me pick the bulls because I could understand the heritability numbers better.

 Even with all that between us, I could never ask him a question about the changes happening to me or information I needed about growing up. At an early age I took note of his ears turning beat red and him changing the subject immediately. Either that or he would give me this look of complete disgust and make that "tsk" sound, as if I had just asked him to watch me pick my nose. I immediately knew that I could never go to him about anything, not only that... but I knew he wouldn't want me coming to him.

 Even stranger, if I had to talk about something, I went to mom, at times it could get weird, if I had a man part problem, I was talking to mom, sometimes she spoke to Dad seeking information, yet instead of Dad saying, "ok I got this", he would relay information through mom back to me. By the time I was about to turn thirteen, I never spoke to either of them about sex, nudity or sexuality ever again.

 The sad thing for them is that I learned about sex, erections, puberty and all that jazz from a guy who was total white trash, the kind of guy that they wouldn't want giving me information but young minds want to know and his guy loved telling all he knew. Also it was his cheap version of sex and sexuality, no mention of love, caring or anything positive about it. Speaking to friends I seem to be in the norm, unfortunately I think that the father and son talks in our day, were only something that happened in movies.

Saturday, November 16, 2019

How Much Farther?

 Yesterday I received the news that a friend of my parents had passed away. She was a sweet and kind person, she was also a friend of my sister and I to be honest because she was one of those adults that children loved to be around. We couldn't believe that she was a teacher, there were very few teachers that kind and caring when we were children. I often wondered what would it be like to be one of her students, she even (with permission) brought us kittens once, how can you not like someone that brings you kittens.

 The news was not really sad that she died, it's probably a blessing. It's sad in what happened to her and frankly, quite disturbing to my sister and I. She unfortunately also suffered from Alzheimer's disease. This was definitely one of those stories of a beautiful life robbed way too early. She began to show problems right after retirement. She never got to have that retirement period of being old enough to finish working but still young enough to travel and enjoy herself. It was pretty much straight to the nursing home, multiple doctors appointments and getting her affairs in order.

 The thing that frightens us is her timeline of illness. She is older than mom but not by a lot, maybe 5 to 7 years; however she was completely "gone" mentally, at least eleven years ago. I remember because my father often asked about her, we were worried about what was going to happen to mom. I often felt this woman would pass shortly after my Dad, yet here we are all these years later. It's quite possible that she died of natural causes and not the Alzheimer's, even after having it so long. As a testament to what a good teacher she was, many former students, (now adults) still came to see her, even though she no longer could remember them.

 I often say to people now, that it's not the thought of mom dying that gives me the greatest anxiety, it's the thought that she could live and suffer for another ten years or more. I was mommy's boy, I will be heartbroken when she is gone but I'm stressed at seeing her like this now. I also heard a frightening statistic, many Alzheimer's patients outlive the family members looking after them.

My sister and I also feel the clock ticking, mom suddenly showed signs at 66 but now when we think back, there may have been earlier signs. One of her younger brothers showed signs at a much earlier age. This weighs on my mind. This morning for example, I cooked eggs for breakfast. Later on as I was walking past the stove, I could feel heat coming off it. When I checked, I realized that I had cooked my eggs and then just walked away to eat, leaving the round on. This frightened me, I have done that a couple of times now. I begin to wonder, was I just sleepy, did I have something on my mind, was I just not paying attention, could this be an early sign of something else?

 What a horrible disease, it takes away the ability of perfectly healthy, normal people, to live their fullest lives during their senior years. Not only that but it seems to have the ability to drag out their humiliation and confusion for up to twenty years. Rest in peace kind lady.

Friday, November 15, 2019

So... I'm the strong one?

 As I get older, people open up to me more and more now. Gone is the need for many friends to pretend everything is running smoothly in their lives. As I get to really know people better, it always surprises me with how often they were hiding fears and anxieties or actual outright problems. I think it helps me feel more "normal", that my fears when younger were not because I'm gay and that somehow made me a weak person, they were the fears of a young person like all the young people around me.

 My old school friends and I keep saying that if we were only able to open up to each other, we would not have felt so alone and also we would probably not have been easy targets for bullies. Unfortunately we can't change the past and as young people, we couldn't see the bigger picture.

 The thing that I have been noticing, is that I seem to be able to handle crisis or confrontational situations better than most. My ego doesn't collapse, I don't fall apart, I deal as best as I can and move on. I'm starting to think that going through life as a gay person didn't hinder me in this area, it made me stronger. I find that my straight friends take great offense to some off hand comment or joke that someone made to them. Maybe because I heard much worse when younger, often I don't pay attention unless I feel it's something that needs to be pointed out. Of all the people I know, I never thought that I would see myself as one of the strong ones.

Thursday, November 14, 2019

The Thick of WINTER, ugh!

 I'm not sure if it's due to climate change or just a cycle we are experiencing but we are in the thick of winter already. The nights have been dropping to almost -20 Celsius and unfortunately that drains all the heat out of the earth. Now that the heat is gone, the snow will stay. We have been getting snow every day almost since November first. This cycle or pattern started above five years ago and seems to be the norm now.

 Usually this area doesn't kick into winter until near Christmas, there have been close calls regarding a green Christmas in past years but not lately. It was not unheard of for winter to arrive near the end of November, that has happened a few times since I was a child. It seems that now winter starts immediately following Halloween. That weighs heavy on a person's mind because what it means is six months of winter instead of four, that's a long time, six months of real winter, not the cute Hollywood winter where everyone is running around in sweaters and drinking hot chocolate. Basically we went from trick or treating and pumpkins, to deep freeze.

 Then there is the darkness, the seemingly never ending darkness. Although Tuesday night the moon was shining on the new snow and you could almost read a book from the light. December first I'm putting up lights and doing a naked pagan dance... inside.. yes inside.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Pizza Oppression!

 I was directed to a post on the Travel Penguin's blog about vegans, regarding how nasty they can be... like those bitter starving models that just need a sandwich for Pete's sake! Hahaha, sorry if you are a vegan, I'm just pulling your chain, although brace yourself for more judgment.

 The post did make me think about something that happened at the Halloween party, something that really ticked me off. The host was ordering pizzas, he was going to get a variety as everyone has different tastes. I'm all for being inclusive, I would never want someone to feel left out. If it was me, I would order, combination, vegetarian, meat lovers etc. The host had the same idea in mind; however instead of ordering these selections, he first asked permission from the vegans/vegetarians. He asked if it was okay for him to order "carnivore pizza", would anyone "be offended" if he ordered "carnivore pizza". Nobody had objections that night, as everyone there enjoyed meat on their pizza but apparently there are members who are offended by the eating of meat and demand that no one is allowed to eat meat in their presence.

 I have a HUGE problem with that, so the vegans/vegetarians not only get to decide what kind of pizza they eat... but now get to decide what kind of pizza I eat! First.. we all had to chip in money, if you are deciding on what I'm buying to eat, then you better be paying my bill you arrogant bleeps! Second, the group doesn't want to offend anyone, well you have a problem now because I'm totally offended by someone else's views and lifestyle choices being forced on me. You're not superior because you don't eat meat, you just made a dietary choice, I respect that but you better come down off the pedestal you placed yourself on, before someone knocks you off.

 Carnivore pizza? What is up with that, we didn't chase a pizza across the svelte of Africa and tackle it to the ground. It has more vegetables on it than meat usually! I'm getting tired of being dictated to by the vegan cult. If you're that offended by how other people live, then maybe you should start a vegan club, at least that way people have the choice of joining and accepting to eat vegan/vegetarian or not. I hate this new inclusiveness that excludes to be inclusive. I feel oppressed, I'm a grown ass man and I should be able to decide what toppings are on my pizza!!!

 The Penguin's post is here.