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Archive for the ‘Being Serious (a serious being)’ Category

It’s Throwback Thursday (which follows Witty Wednesday), so why not take a break from telling the truth to reminisce about the good old days of running through sprinklers in our yards and careering down the slip-n-slide into the grass?

slip n slide

Photo from Slide the City

Oh, but we don’t have to reminisce! Because a giant slip-n-slide is coming to San Francisco and a bunch of other cities in the great dry state of California! Normally, I’d be all for a huge slippery slope taking over a street in SF, but not right now. We are in a severe drought that has everyone in an uproar, and rightly so. It’s difficult to wrap my mind around the fact that any organization would be stupid enough to bring a huge wet slide to California — and it really must be stupid to think July is a great time of year for water-related activities in San Francisco. I recall my first visit to this great city. It was in July, around my birthday. And it was fucking foggy & frigid!

The organization’s website touts that they’re going to recycle the water and return it back to the city for use (?) once the event is over. But if any of you recall how slip-n-slides work, not all of the water used will be available for recycling. Much of it will splash out to water the pavement (bringing to mind the Panhandle sprinklers debacle) or evaporate. Or get peed in. And the most offensive part of all? The site compares the slide’s use of water per day to a golf course, because it’s so much less. Oh no they didn’t!

For those of you who live in California, you probably know about this and have signed the petition. For anyone else, please consider doing so. Because our precious water feeds our crops, which feed most of America. And, like many people have been saying, EVERY LITTLE BIT COUNTS.

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UPDATE: Hate (not really) to say I told you so.

I’m taking a break from 30 Days of Truths to briefly jump back into what this blog was originally about (kind of): nature and that sort of shit.

When I read that the FDA is looking into releasing GM mosquitoes in the U.S., my blood started to boil. Here we go again, trying to fuck with the ecosystem to help our own species.

It’s true that mosquitoes are the world’s deadliest animals: BiggestKillers_final_v8_no-logo

(Photo credit)

But, as this article states, they are also the easiest to repel, and most of the diseases they carry can be avoided with vaccinations.

I fully believe that mosquitoes, like everything else on this planet (well, every natural thing on this planet) are here for a reason. In addition to population control, they make up part of the diet of bats, purple martins, and other species, including, believe it or not, mosquitofish. They may seem annoying and pointless to us, but could you imagine how many people would populate this earth if disease spread by mosquitoes didn’t kill a whole bunch of them? True, it’s easy for me to say this as someone with healthcare sitting in front of a computer in an urban, relatively mosquito-free area. Others are not so fortunate. But I don’t think that screwing with the DNA of mosquitoes is the way to solve this “issue.”

If you’re going to focus time and money on anything, focus it on getting vaccinations to the people who need them.

Then again, maybe if the DNA in these modified mosquitoes turns out to be detrimental to the human population, we can finally surpass mosquitoes as the world’s deadliest animal.

 

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I can’t believe it’s almost February and I’m only on Day 08. What a slacker! Though the fact that I’ve posted more in the past two months than I did in all of 2012 and 2013 ought to count for something. Onto the post at hand…

Unfortunately, being the sensitive soul that I am, I have quite a few people who fall into this category. But there is one person in particular who treated me like shit and made my life hell. I’m grateful that she was only in my life for a relatively short period of time, but it was an extremely stressful time. Almost everyone who knows me has heard about my roommate from hell (RFH). I apologize in advance for what will most definitely be a rambling and crazy post.

The year was 2001. The town was Brighton, MA. I had just graduated from college and was super stoked to have a full-time job and be moving into my first post-college apartment with two roommates. One of the girls was the master tenant; she’d been there for a while. She was also older and working toward her PhD in physical therapy. I don’t remember how I found the place, but a good college friend of mine hooked us up with a mutual friend from school for the third bedroom. At first, we all got along. We shopped for common area stuff, hung out a lot in the apartment, and generally had a good time. After a while, RFH’s behavior started to grate on me. She never cleaned up after herself, and she was loud and inconsiderate. She also tended to be a bully, forcing us other two girls to accommodate her needs. I was starting to realize that, on top of it all, she was somewhat of a phony. I despise phonies.

To make matters worse, we had a bit of a car/parking situation. Our parking setup was off-street tandem, and since she didn’t know how to drive a standard, I always had to park in front of her. That meant shuffling cars myself when she wasn’t home. She didn’t allow me to take the spare car keys, so any time I needed to come or go and she wasn’t there to move her car (or was too lazy to come out and do it herself — yes, this happened), I had to leave my car idling outside, run in to get her spare keys, then run back out to shuffle the cars. At first it was no big deal, because I rarely drove. But once I started dating a guy who lived an hour away, I was driving more frequently and shuffling cars a lot more. When I asked her if she’d mind me holding onto her spare keys so I didn’t have to run in and out of the apartment, she flat-out refused “just in case a friend of hers may need to borrow the car.” (Which never happened.)

One specific incident burned itself into my brain. It was a rainy Monday of a long weekend, and I was returning from a movie and the grocery store with a car full of groceries. Upon getting home, there was a car parked in my spot. Due to the weather, I opted to pull up alongside the house where I’m technically not supposed to park (you need a permit to park on those streets, and I didn’t have one due to my car being registered in another town). When I got inside, RFH was there with her parents. Her parents were the ones blocking my space. After I unloaded my stuff and needed to park, I asked RFH if her parents could possibly move their car so I could get into the driveway. She essentially flipped out and refused. They did eventually leave, and I was lucky to not have gotten any sort of citation.

Time went on, and things got to the point where both the third older roommate and me weren’t talking to RFH unless we had to. But since older roommate was gone a lot between work, school, and her boyfriend, I got the brunt of RFH’s attitude. And it wasn’t just sloppiness, but also personal attacks. By now, I was mostly staying in my room or with my boyfriend. I consistently had stomach issues, because I’m not good at confrontation, and my emotions manifest them in my stomach.

When it finally came time to renew the lease, RFH told me: “Come August, you’d better find a new place.” Little did she know that older roommate and I already planned to ask RFH to leave. So at the time, I just smiled and walked away, knowing older roommate, as master tenant, would be the one to break the news.

*******

On moving day, RFH’s parents are once again on site. I had been staying at my boyfriends and had passive-aggressively taken her spare car keys, knowing she’d need them before leaving. I also knew I’d be getting home well before she left, but by now I was blinded by anger. When I get to the apartment, they’re about two-thirds of the way done, so I just walk into my room and shut the door. Not five minutes later, I hear a knock. I open the door to see her dad, who says something like: “We have been nothing but nice to you, and then you go and give it to us up the ass.” Gestures and all. I’m so shaken/angry/scared that I take her spare keys and chuck them into the hall, slam my door, and call my boyfriend to talk to him until they’re gone.

*******

Thankfully, that was the last I saw of RFH and her parents. Older roommate and I replaced RFH with a sweet Irish girl who might as well have been an angel compared to RFH.

There you have it. The first (and worst) in a series of roommate experiences that have convinced me living alone (unless it’s with a partner) is the way to go.

*Deep breaths*

Read the full list of truths here.

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The number 7 is one of my lucky numbers. I was born in the 7th month of the 70th decade (in the 20th century, not the 17th – I’m not that old) and happen to generally like the number. However, #7 on this list is not a favorite of mine. Therefore, I’m not going to answer it. Instead, I’m going to complain about it.

“Someone who has made your life worth living for”? Firstable, that “for” at the end of the sentence is completely unnecessary. If the person who wrote this really wanted to be grammatically correct, it could read: Someone for whom your life has been worth living. Otherwise, drop the fucking “for.” Second, though I have many important people in my life about whom I care (see?), I don’t think I’d kill myself if any of them were to randomly disappear. Sure, I’d be sad, but I’d have to carry on. Because my life is worth living for ME, not somebody else. I’m also lucky enough to have an awesome family and amazing friends who would help pick me up should someone close to me get abducted by aliens, never to be returned. We are responsible for our own happiness and can’t be dependent on any one other person for that because, unfortunately, people come in and out of our lives for various reasons, and we need to be able to roll with it.

[But just to prove I’m not a robot, I have had people I cared about (I’m being casual with my grammar in this instance, since it’s a blog and all) fade from my life, and it hurts. But it would hurt a lot more if I was living my life for them and not me.]

So, sorry not sorry for not quite answering this, even though I am being truthful.

Read the entire list of truths here.

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There are so many things I hope I never have to do, I’m not sure where to go with this. Many people might say: “I hope I never have to watch my own child die.” Or some iteration of that. I am not one of those people. Due to my excessively selfish (self-absorbed?) tendencies, I am a member of the kid-less crew. Not that I think those who have kids aren’t selfish because let’s be honest. People are programmed to do things that make themselves feel good, whether directly or indirectly. Even an act that appears selfless on the surface has selfish undercurrents.

If you’ve ever seen this clip from Friends, you know what I mean:

Anyway, back to what I hope I never have to do. I hope I never have to die a slow and painful death. Ever since college, when I wrote a persuasive essay on the merits of physician-assisted suicide (PAS), I’ve been hoping that if there ever comes a time I’m in that situation, I can be put down like a dog. More value is placed on the life of a human than that of a dog, so why do dogs get the grace of euthanasia? People should have the autonomy to decide whether or not their life is worth living, just as they can decide whether or not to shave.

(I could go into a whole tangent about the healthcare industry and how money may have something to do with it, but I won’t. I could also go into a tangent about shaving. I won’t do that either.)

When I can no longer take care of myself, put me down. If I get terminal cancer, put me down. If I have a stroke that renders me helpless, put me down. If I’m in an accident that permanently lands me in a hospital bed, put me down!

I’m not saying PAS in acceptable in all situations. It’s not an easy out for when someone breaks your heart or you’re having a bad week. It’s not for the fickle. It’s for those who can see death on the horizon and prefer to die with dignity. It’s a matter of freedom. And I want it to be an option for me if it comes to that. I had to watch my grandfather die over the course of several weeks, and it was extremely traumatizing. His doctors wanted to try this and that and none of it worked, all the while he was suffering in a cold and sterile hospital. When he finally said “enough,” he was moved to hospice. And let me tell you, passive death in a hospice isn’t pleasant for anyone.

We’re encouraged to be proactive when it comes to living our lives. Why not be proactive when it comes to ending them?

**************************** UPDATE ************************

Just read about the Maynard/Diaz Death with Dignity case in the news. I really hope this comes to fruition in California!

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Happy New Year’s Eve! The holiday season has kept me busy (and hungover), and I’ve been slacking in the blogging department. Given that New Year’s is all about making — and keeping — resolutions, now’s as good a time as any to tackle Day 05. Though I don’t particularly like the concept of resolutions, the beginning of another year is the perfect time to reflect on your life and make attainable goals for your future. A clean slate, if you will.

Besides the obvious goal of merely surviving until 2015 (which may be difficult since my evening plans involve being outside in cold temperatures for an extended period of time (Yes, I know. I’m from New England and should not be whining about 40-degree temperatures at all. But three years here has thinned my blood, and my winter coat is packed somewhere in storage.)), this one’s easy.

One thing I hope to do in my life is bike across the country. I have a touring bike, built almost from scratch, that would be perfect for the journey. “America the Beautiful” wasn’t written about nothing, and I can’t think of a better way to take in what this country has to offer. I’ve spoken with people who have made the trek, and they only have positive things to say. Plus, it would help me conquer a couple of my biggest fears: traveling alone and finding my way (both on a map and in my brain). It’s also a great way to meet new people – those I wouldn’t normally meet in the course of everyday life. I’ve never lived alone and am the type of person who prefers not to be isolated. At this point in my life, forced alone time is something from which I could greatly benefit. Plus, I’ll never truly be isolated. There will always be friendly people willing to lend a hand (or a couch), and cell service is never too far out of reach.

Just thinking about biking cross-country scares and excites me, which confirms that I need to stop “just thinking” about it and make it happen. Tonight I’ll be drinking to keep warm and to planning an exciting two-wheeled journey.

Click here to read the list of Truths.

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Sorry for the delay, folks! It’s been crazy at work (like, I actually have to focus on it). And, to be honest, I’ve been putting this one off. Partly because I’m kind of at a loss, and partly because I don’t want to call anyone out. Not like my opinion truly matters to anyone other than myself, but I am putting this out there for the public.

This Truth goes somewhat hand-in-hand with Day 03. I’m hard on myself, and I’m hard on others. Consequently, I’ve held a lot of grudges over the years and have trouble letting things go. Even when I say I’m going to forgive and forget, I don’t often really forgive, let alone forget. Even today when I recount traumatizing stuff that happened over 10 years ago, negative feelings resurface. Yes, I know that’s not healthy and that letting things go in order to forgive people will help me more than anyone else.

The good thing is that this post is about something I have to forgive someone for — not necessarily something I WILL forgive someone for. Haha, loophole, I found you! I’m also going to be extremely vague, for reasons mentioned above. I’m sure some people will still be able to figure this one out. Oh well!

There is a person — I’ll refer to as “Poop Head” — who is not so much in my life anymore. This is mainly because I refuse to forgive Poop Head for completely messing with my head and heart over an extended period of time by being selfish and thoughtless while at the same time manipulating others to believe that Poop Head is perfect and infallible (among other things). I won’t go into anymore detail, but I am aware that forgiving Poop Head would allow me to move on with my life. I’m getting closer and closer to forgiveness (I will NEVER forget, lest I make the same mistake twice), but I’m not quite there yet. I’m hopeful that forgiveness will replace resentment sooner than later. In the meantime, I continue to spend more and more time with amazing people who get me ever-closer to the goal.

You can refer back to the list of Truths here.

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