Saturday, June 27, 2015

5/4 Decision

I've been trying to sleep for the last 45 minutes but this stuff keeps rattling in my head and I have to get it out. I can't post it to Facebook because I'm sick of both the blind devotion and the blind hate. So, for the few who read this, please pardon the disjointed randomness along with all the grammar and spelling error I'm sure to ignore.

This morning, when I heard that the Supreme Court of the United States of America decided that all the states had to allow same sex couples to marry and recognize those marriage I was thrilled. I had expected the Supreme Court to rule that states must recognize all marriages that take place in other states, but I didn't expect them to force all the states to allow same sex couples to marry. My second thought was to wonder how long before some asshole with a gun shoots up a church because two men or two women had a marriage ceremony there? I hope it never happens, but I bet it will. This is a very cynical thought for a day when so many are celebrating good news. But what will happen when that asshole comes along? Who will celebrate that? How will that be rectified? It's been 51 years since Brown V. Board of Education said that segregation in schools was wrong (which, incidentally is when South Carolina decided to put the Confederate flag on its capital building) and we don't have any racial problems in the US anymore.

And then there's the Facebook crap. Most of the people I'm "friends" with are very happy about the ruling. Like me, they lean to the left on social issues. The problem is that most of them look at this and seem to say that the problem is over and things will be great from her on out. To me, that's blind optimism. Things are rarely that simple, even if we want them to be. And I don't want to burst their happiness bubbles. I did that years ago when Obama first ran for president. I told them that no matter what the man said, things would pretty much stay the same even with all the hope and belief in the world. I was pretty much called a heartless cynic for saying that. Of course a couple years later they were saying it on their own.

The thing that really bothers me is this sort of conversation that went on between my Sister-In-Law (SIL) and Grandma:

SIL: I can just sit there And keep liking all the post all day long. Soo happy. To know, to get close to, have seen so many gay friends with their love, passion, sacrifice for each other, no one, with a tiniest heart left in them can stand depriving that right from them. No. Because love is love. You can feel it cross culture, language, ethnicity. Yes Yes yes. :')

Grandma: I have never had a problem with anyone, who wanted too, getting married but I do have a problem with the groups that go to small businesses who choose, for whatever reason, not to serve them. The group then sues these businesses and the expense runs them out of business. This is so wrong. If some one didn't want to sell to me I would say it was their right. Today the rights only go one way and I am sick of it!!!!!

SIL: Well, I wouldn't be ok with people not selling me stuff or hire me because I am Asian.

Grandma: It has always been, if someone won't do business with me, I'll take my business elsewhere. These people are targeting these businesses and are making a big deal of serve me or else. In one case the group came from another state. Anybody should marry anybody but they have no right to then ruin other peoples lives. This morning they made a big deal about not interfering with the belief of others. That is an out and out lie. For eons people have been exchanging their vows on mountain tops under the full moon and in many other inventive ways but they have never tried to change the beliefs of others. When I was a child two ladies exchanged vows and no one said one word. That was in the USA . . . in the 1940s. ♥
The idea that every single gay couple getting married really bothers me. I've heard it before and I don't believe it. Yes, businesses have been sued for not being willing to serve homosexuals who want to buy a wedding cake, but that's the extreme minority. Most homosexual couples, like most heterosexual couples, will simply move on to another store if they are refused service because why would they want to give money to a store where their money isn't wanted? Most don't. A vocal few will make a fuss, but how is that different from the vocal few of dark skin who demanded to be served at lunch counters who didn't want to serve "colored" people? How would the world react if SIL went to buy a cake and was refused service because she's Asian?

Have to say, though, that I agree that bakeries shouldn't be sued because they don't want to make a wedding cake for the wedding of a same sex couple. Owners of business should have the right to refuse to accept money. That said, I do think that boycotting those establishments is a great idea. Why isn't there an online list of all the bakeries and flower shops and other whatnots that won't serve gay couples so that I know who I don't want to give my money to? (Probably because this suing thing has really only happened two or three times and isn't going to destroy thousands of businesses.) Choices like this can be made. I choose to never set foot into a Hobby Lobby because they won't provide insurance that covers birth control for women but will cover penis pumps for men. I wish more people would make that choice and hit Hobby Lobby in the pocket. I hope that it's what'll happen if suddenly most of the wedding industry decides it won't serve same sex couples who want to get married.

The thing that really gets me is when Grandma call the gay couples "these people." She may be doing it unconsciously, but by calling a group "these people" she's separating them and implying that the gay couples who sue are different and wrong and other. "These people" are not other, their neighbors and parents and friends and coworkers. "These people" are us and we are "these people," too.\

Grandma's story at the end misses the whole point. Yes, I do believe that in the small town in which she grew up two women who vowed to love and honor each other until death happened. I believe that these women were probably left alone because where Grandma grew up it was very live-and-let-live and if the two women weren't hurting other people then the community would leave them alone to be who they were. I don't believe that no one said a word, though, because juicy gossip is always talked about. People still whisper about these things today.

Besides, the real point isn't that gay people get to marry, it's that they get the protections and benefits that are governed by law that they couldn't get as domestic partners. Most importantly, they are allowed to legally be parents to their children. Did you know that only one parent in a same sex couple could be their child's legal guardian? That only one parent could make medical decisions? That one parent wasn't allowed to yes to life saving procedures? That if the couple split the non-guardian could be denied visitation because he or she wasn't a legal parent? For me, the most important part of this decision is now there is equal protection for the children of gay parents and hopefully that will improve the world a little bit.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Working Report

I just learned that on July 1 I get promoted. This will likely be the last promotion I ever receive. Everything after this level involves supervising/managing. I don't want to do either of those things

Halfway through September, I will have worked for The State for 10 years. 3652 days.

The best I can say about it is that the pay has been more that I've ever been paid, but lower than I'd like and the pay has been steady.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Four or so weeks ago I went to this mini conference thing for the local community college. It was a lunch with the business teachers and local schools and businesses. I was there as a representative for the prison I work at and spent most of the time shouting that people, not just the youth, need to be taught how to fill out an application properly (a waitress who writes "I waited on tables" does not actually tell me what she did) and have fuckin' manners on the phone (no, I am not here to take your abuse and I'm not going to fill out the application for you nor will I take the exam for you).

This year also included instructors from the computer science-ish type classes. This way we could also talk technology and the programs that student's will be using once they enter the industry of, hopefully, their choice. One of the instructors was a teacher I had nearly 15 years ago. I took three classes from her all based around graphic design. I did two classes on Adobe Illustrator and one for InDesign. (The second semester of InDesign was with a different teacher.)

I spoke with her before the lunch and the talk began. Mostly, we talked about her classes. She's still doing the Illustrator and InDesign, but she's also teaching Photoshop (which she taught way back when, but I wasn't interested in taking), an computer aided animation, not Flash, and 3D modeling in Maya. All of it excited me. We did get around to talking about me. She seemed... well... disappointed with where I was in my life.

I was, too.

Ever since that day, going to work and staying at work has been very hard for me to do.

I have spent much time looking at the classes she offers, but most are during the day now. Way back when she was only a part time teacher and her classes all took place in the evening. But how do I justify to my boss and then her boss, the Warden, missing six hours of work each week? Especially for classes that would do nothing for promotional purposes? How do I make those hours up without wanting to poke my eyes out? Should I use 90 hours (more than two work weeks worth of time) of vacation time over a semester to take a class? I don't know!

Not since I was little did I really know what I wanted to do as an adult. For a time, I thought I could be a professional story teller, or at least a semi-professional. That idea was squashed out of me in college. The closest I came to finding something that really interested me was the graphic design. I moved from Cowtown to Cowcity to continue design courses. It was just starting in Cowtown, but Cowcity had a real curriculum and was building a 3D modeling/animation curriculum at that time. Eventually, I didn't get enough hours working at a coffee shop and couldn't afford to live there anymore. (You can actually read about this time on this blog by clicking through 2004 and 2005 through September or October. Crazy.) I ended up back in Cowtown, where I didn't have to pay rent, and looked for a job that would actually pay me money and I wouldn't have to live with my parents or a roommate. That's how I ended up with the State in September 2005. In 3 1/2 months I will have finished my tenth year with the state. Fuck.

Most of the ten years have been okay. Just a job. Stuff I do for money. Unfortunately, I've never done a lot outside of the job stuff because of the depression thing. So, I just worked at work that was work that didn't make me more miserable. Work I didn't hate. Work I still don't hate. The problem is that I was reminded about something that I liked that could have lead somewhere, or not. Like I wrote, it's been hard to go to work and then stay there for the full day.

And along with all that it's been really easy to want to quit, give up, and go away.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Egotism and Emnity

I just finished reading Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen.

It took 30, or so, chapters to become interesting and then there were only 30, or so, left to read.

I enjoyed it, for what it was. However, I refuse to belive that people actually talked like the characters in the book speak. Why say only two words when you can say two dozen instead and bury your true intention under useless verbaige?

It's nice that the two words in the title applied to both the main character and her love interest.

In the end, Jane Eyre was better. Read that instead.

Sunday, April 05, 2015

Another Year

Happy birthday to me
I'd rather not be
I'm tired of existence
Happy birthday to me

Thursday, March 26, 2015

The Move Is On

My March has been spent preparing myself to move.
Not by choice, mind you.
The whole thing was handled badly.
Very badly.
On the side that owns the land.
I just stewed.
I'm still stewing.
I'll probably be stewing for another week or two.
Saturday I move.
I'm moving from a house to an apartment.
It's not much smaller, but it is so not private.
The price is more, though.
One Fifth more.
Right now I feel like this will be my last move.
This apartment feels like the last place I will ever live.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

The Missing Word

I spent 10 hours, today, giving a civil service test. 150 people took the test. People of both genders and of all flavors. Ages ranged from 19 (I know because his mother is a coworker) to somewhere near or in their 60s (I saw at least two driver licenses with birth dates in the 1950s, but I can't remember the actual year). Most of the day was spent slowly walking around the room watching people fill in little bubble, waiting for a hand to be raised so I could replace a pencil or scratch paper.

When I was young(er?) I used to watch the proctors of exams and think that it was a very grown-up job to do. They were in charge of this thing that seemed so important to me. The thing was proof of education. Proof of learning. An ethereal thing made tangible. Made measurable. (Which seemed very important to me, once upon a time.)

Today was a reminder of just how not grown-up the world is.

I walked around the room for many hours. I stumbled a few times. I stopped to whisper banalities with the other proctors. I sang songs, under my breath, to myself.

I don't know why, but I keep expecting there to be a moment where I'm suddenly a grown-up.

Even after talking to my parents, brothers, other people I know who I'm sort of close to and think they like spending time with me, and learning that none of them have ever really felt GROWN-UP. These are people with children and grandchildren. It seems like raising a family should be one of the most grown-up things people can do. It's too bad any couple of assholes with a half six-pack and a broken condom can fall into this.

The grown-up moment doesn't exist. I know this. I know that everyone is just faking it and anyone who says they feel like they're a grown-up are either a liar or insane. I know this, but I keep waiting for it to happen. I keep looking at moments of my life and wonder if that was it. Then I wonder if I missed it, that moment. That it somehow just didn't sink in for me.

Do other people even worry about this? If they do, how do they push it into the back of their minds so they're not sitting up late at night with tears behind their eyes with worry? What do they do to get it out?

Part of all of the AAAARGH! in my brain is me thinking about my last visit with the brain doctor. The last time he really pushed on me that I need to meet people. People who I want to spend time with. People with like interests. People who want to spend time with me (who aren't family). And I just can't do it. I can't.

He asks about co-workers near my age and I say it's a no go. Why? Because I don't know anything about what they are interested in except their children. And that's the way it should be. Their children should be their number one interest. That's good parenting. What else do they like? I don't know because I don't know how to talk to most human beings when there isn't lifescript involved.

What do I mean by lifescript? It that thing everyone can do with everyone when it comes to talking about work because no one cares, but everyone has crap to say. It's rattling off all the crap that needs to be said when I talk to people on the phone. It's the way kids instinctively know how to dodge their parents' questions about school. It's the rote conversations everyone has each day with other people where they put little thought if any into the responses, but always require some basic topic that's so internal to people that the thought really isn't necessary.

The last time I saw the brain doctor he kept telling me that I need to go somewhere and do something with people and somehow, due to like interests, we'll become and everything will be great. You know, because putting a person whose throat freezes around new people in a social situation is the perfect idea. The worst thing was that he made me feel like I was wrong. Like I was lying. Like this part of me that's been a part of me for as long as I can remember is something that I use as an excuse for I don't even know what.

When I first walked into his office and sat down he spent a long time and a lot of words telling me that the depression in my head is real. After I took the brain test he wanted me to take he spent a lot of time and words telling me that my depression is more than normal depression, but it's chemical. It's real, he kept telling me. This thing I have about people, my inability and lack of desire to make he just doesn't understand.

Two or three sessions ago, I spent a long time trying to make him understand that the desire to go make just isn't inside of me anymore. It was there when I was little. I wanted to be with everyone so much and I tried so hard, but they never seemed interested and trying hard was especially hard because I couldn't vocalize things well to the other kids. I wanted to be with adults, but I was a goofy little kid and goofy little kids aren't with adults. Eventually, I reached a point where I just didn't want to be disliked by my peers and that can be done by just staying out of the way and flying under the radar. I thought I made him understand. Apparently I didn't.

The worst, this last time, was when he told me that I have to make more of an effort with the people I already know. That I have to take the time to go to them and figure out things that we can do and I'm tired of doing that. I've been doing that for years. At least it feels that way. And like earlier, a lot of it has to do with people focusing on families and that's the way it should be. Still, I'm tired of it, trying to set up stuff with people who are.

I see the brain doctor in about 10 days.

I don't know much about what it means to be a human being, but I'm pretty sure that I'm not actually a person.