Monday, June 11, 2012

Universal Healthcare: The Ultimate Doomsday Prep

Why is it that, with the onset of the Internet blogger, objectivism has become clouded for the majority of Americans?  It's not really that difficult to tell the difference between a rant (this) and objective journalism (that).  Take, for example, the issue of the interesting subset of individuals known as "Doomsday Preppers". 
Doomsday Preppers are people who live their lives in preparation for a catastrophic event, not including feasible occurrences. They work ardently to make sure that they are going to be the ones who survive the apocalypse. 

I have two questions for this group.
First, why would you want to survive the apocalypse?
We've all seen the ruins of a burnt house before.  If you have seen a house that has burned completely, it is eery and quite disturbing.  Even if you have only seen images in news magazines, or on television, it can still be jarring.  I want to bring an image to the forefront of your mind.  Have you ever seen a house that had completely burned, and the entire thing is in ruins, except for the chimney/fireplace?  At first glance, you would never have even expected a house once stood on the lot, save for the uncannily well fortified fire stack.
My first thought, having seen this image was, "why didn't they make the whole house as well as the chimney?"  My thought was purely hypothetical, but the more I considered it, the motive of the Doomsday Prep bunch became more clear.  They are the ones, who systematically attempt to make their total environment "fortified". 
It seems feasible enough but if you think about it, really think about it, it is so far from it.

In the end we all bite the big one.

That's all there is to it.  You can cloister yourself away underground with a weird tilapia farm, and teach your kids to scramble every time a plane passes, but is that better than dying?  In the end it's the same argument as euthenasia.  Is a life without quality, still better than death?  It seems to me like the ultimate in faithlessness.  I define "faith", as a trust that you did everything to make yours a life that was well-lived.  If you spend your entire life delaying the inevitable, is yours a life well-lived?

Second question: Is it not just as worrisome, if not more so, that your family may contract an infection of some sort?  Shouldn't universal health coverage be a concern if you are 'prepping' for disaster? 
There is a much higher chance your loved one would contract a life threatening disease, and not get proper care?  I, personally, took health care for granted until my husband lost his job.  COBRA, for my family, would have been fifteen hundred dollars for the each month my spouse, or myself, was unemployed.  Fifteen hundred dollars cuts deep, especially with a baby who had not yet received all his vaccines.  Anyway, I digress.  My point is that the Doomsday Preppers should become as afraid, if hyperbole is what it takes, of real disasters rather than imagined, or unforeseen events.  A lot more people get ear infections than get taken out by a tornado... even as horrible as tornadoes are. 

A lot of you will see my views as 'liberal'.  I really don't see how I could be more objective.  I wouldn't dream of infringing on any one's right to live as they see fit.  I'm just observing and applying my filter.  I do believe that the idea of living one's life as if they were in a Cormac McCarthy novel is no way to live. 
I have seen a few episodes of "Doomsday Preppers" and they all seem to have an underlying fear in everything they do.  I think that's sad.  I also think it's sad to sink so much trouble in preparing for only oneself, or one's own family.  I've seen that episode of "The Twilight Zone", also.  I am more frightened by what the onset of the Doomsday Prepper says about our world. 

So, having said that, I would sooner walk into the monsoon than live my life in fear of it.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Here we go...

I'm not afraid to admit it.  I'm pissed about all this "bully" hype.  I'm tired of the PSAs. I'm sick of it.  What's the fucking problem?  Are bullies new? What, exactly, is everyone trying to achieve?  If your kid takes your gun to school to shoot people, I don't feel bad for you.  I don't give a shit who talked down to them, or made them feel bad... It should have been you.  You should have handled your fucking homicidal child before he used your gun to shoot innocent people. 
People commit suicide for one reason, they feel they can't live. 
If someone has the will to tough it out, it takes courage.  Being able to protect one's self isn't a privilidge, it's a right.  If someone hits you, you have the right to protect yourself. If your child is taking an ass beating everyday, and you suggest "verbal resolution", someone should beat your ass. I was bullied my entire 8th grade year.  I handled it myself, with no violence, and everything was fine.  I told my parents about it, and they let me know that if I wasn't equipped to handle it, they would.  The idea of that scared me worse than any bully ever could.  Children, nowadays, are either mean, or weak.  What the fuck is up with that?
 I'm fucking perplexed right now.
 I watched my 14 month old son smear his own shit on his face last week, and I thought, "Oh yeah, this little bastard's gonna have to learn to throw a punch."
The meanest group of people on this fucking earth wasn't the Nazis, it's children aged 12 to 17.  Bear this in mind, your child will have to deal with the same shit you did, but in a different form.  Coddling our kids is ensuring them, and forgiving, their weaknesses. 
That cannot be. 
The only strong person who ever stood behind a gun, is the person who was strong without it. 
The most offensive thing about the hype is the fact that it belittles the efforts of everyone who worked up the courage to defend themselves.  There have been millions of little George McFlys out there, building their courage, punching the bully, getting laid. 
Tell your children that if they're gonna get their asses beat, at least swing a punch.  Even if the punch doesn't connect, the kid'll feel like a fucking champ for trying... or, you could just let the president host a fucking HBO special, and pour yourself another drink.  Why are your kids watching HBO, anyway?

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Picture, Picture

I awoke this morning to be greeted by a link on my Facebook page to an article for a local news website. The article had a list of sex offenders living in the more "ritzy" areas of town ("ritzy" is their word, not mine). There was a list of pictures, or a parade of creeps, if you will.  And, as I pride myself on being accurate with my stereotypes, they all looked exactly like you would think a child molester should look. They'd all done time in prison. They were all, I'm sure, appropriately "scumbaggy". I am not defending their actions, in any way. I do, however, have some problems with this article... and this type of journalism, altogether.
First, they used the word "ritzy" which is outdated as hell. This is a word my mom would use to describe a clothing store where she couldn't afford to shop. In this article, it's fair to say, "ritzy" means a rich, white, neighborhood... Again, I have to remind you that my stereotypes are uncannily accurate. So, what the author of this particular piece is saying is that there are perverts living among the rich and the white, which is definitely news-worthy.
Now, as tempted as I am, to feel the need to post pictures to show the overprivileged how to detect scumbags lurking in their area, I have to believe that rich people don't like anyone lurking about. Especially brown, or dark brown, people. To be fair, all the perverts depicted were white, so it might be informative to let the rich white people know that white people can also be dangerous... as crazy as that seems.
As I have mentioned earlier, I am an awesome stereotype-er. I do it alot and have gotten pretty fucking good at it... So much so that I feel my use of the f-word is warranted, but I digress. In case you didn't know, this is what a pervert looks like...
He's a white guy.
He wears oversized glasses, often horn-rimmed.
He has a 1970's haircut, often unwashed.
He incorperates polyester into his wardrobe as often as possible.
Do I even have to mention the windowless van?
He is often a member of the clergy.
I know what you're thinking... You're thinking, "Goddamn it, she is a fucking epic stereotype-er". First of all, please watch your mouth, there are kids here. Secondly, YES! I am fucking awesome at it.
I have used my unsurpassed skill to illustrate something else at which I am particularly awesome, and that is... irony.
Some of you may have had the good sense to notice that I described the perfect model of a child molester to prove one thing...
Sometimes they DON'T look like this!
I know, I know, it seems frightening, and disheartening, that I can't provide you a foolproof way to feel safe to allow your kids to wander, hither and yon, without doing any more investigation to their whereabouts than just a quick glance. I understand that parenting can be a pain in the ass, I have better shit to do, as well.  But the simple truth is this... White people, you just have to watch your backs. 
Knuckle up, bitches. I mean, you live in "ritzy" areas. You obviously have the good sense not to be poor.
But, alas, if you don't want to do any parenting, you can trust that the hard-nosed journalists at the local press will squelch any possibility that your neighbor is diddling your kids...'s probably your brother that's doing it...

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Losing My Mind

I woke up this morning from the most horrible nightmare I've had in a long time. Here's the gist... I was in a room, nicely decorated, with a bunch of the mean (gorgeous) girls I went to high school with fifteen years ago. They were mocking me and belittling me in a way they never did in reality. I woke in a cold sweat on the verge of a massive stress headache. Have you ever woken up with a headache because your dream was so fucked up? I do it on a regular basis. Very fucked up am I! I got up, thanks to my lovely two year old daughter. I was grateful that she nudged me awake, and proffered up her daily request for "cheesy eggs". As I was making the eggs, I chugged coffee because I couldn't escape the terror of the dream. The realization that frightened me so much after I had awoken... awakened? was the truth that the high school girls in my dream were all figments of my imagination... or, in essence, they were all me. I was mocking myself. I was stomping on my self-esteem. How is it, that after all these years, the best way my subconscious can think of to plunge me into depression is to manifest itself as the "in crowd" in high school.
Later in the day I had to make an appointment to have a house inspected. This house is a prospective home for my beautiful family. I want it to be our home. It is in a beautiful family oriented neighborhood, and is on a nice quiet street. If all goes well with our loan, we will have pulled off a sweet deal. We will easily be able to make the mortgage payments with just my husband's salary, and I will have the privilege of raising my two beautiful kids until they go to school. I, then, have the luxury of choosing whether, or not, I go back to work. This sounds like a wonderful life. It could be mine.
I was raised to believe that I couldn't expect any better than the bare minimum, and have not learned to stop believing this. My logical brain understands that I can have the life I desire, but my subconscious is a group of mean hotties that spend all night bringing me down. What can I do? I am in a deep state of emotional retardation. I want just relax, but life has a tendency of sucking. I just have to put that out there. I was blessed with a beautiful husband, daughter, and son. Can I have a little more? Just a little more? Do I have the right to ask, if not expect as much?
Oh well, here's to the great unknown.
Forty five days until closing. I guess that says it all.
Let the rants begin.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happily Ever After...

I realized something this morning, as I skimmed through Valentine's Blogs and Ads, that I had never realized before. Valentine's Day is not for lovers. It's a way to explain "love" to people who don't have lovers. So, here's my addition to the bowl of shit.
Valentine's Day, as most holidays, is about two things.
Number one... 
Little kids can have a ball with it. The reason behind this one is simple. Little kids have a right to believe in magic. Little kids are adorable when they create awful crafts. Little kids are the fucking cutest when they await the approval of Mommy, or Daddy, after they've destroyed a cupcake with a horrible frosting job, or annihilated a clean white piece of paper with indiscernible scribblings.
Kids are simple-minded.
 Isn't it precious?
The problem with this is that these kids grow up and, on a few days out of the year, still believe that the magic of St. Valentine's Day is real.
Is magic real? 
As adults, our collective ideas about love are bonkers. We are made to believe fairy tales, because the truth about relationships is not interesting enough to tell stories about.  Let me start with the myth of "Love at first sight". 
Absorb this!
You see a beautiful purse on display and you have to have it. Love at first sight? Then, you take a closer look and the lining is for shit. What do you do? Do you spend a bunch of money on it, and say that you'll take it home and replace the lining yourself? HELL NO! You don't purchase it, because its crap.
Now, having said that, I have to say that you should not be looking for a perfect purse, either. You are not perfect.  You are weird in ways that you will not even fully understand. How do you rectify this situation?
If you think that finding a mate requires a bit of research and is not very romantic, at all... Congratulations! You will, one day, be very happy.
Let Go!
Forget about all the bullshit about Prince Charming. There's a reason the stories didn't delve into his personality too deeply. He could've been a drug addict, or cross dresser, or cheater, or a butthole fetishist... Who the hell knows, but I know the dude was probably fucked up in one way or another. Why wouldn't he be? That's why they end the story right at the hook-up. "Happily Ever After" translates to "We'll Spare You the Uninteresting Stuff... Enjoy the Rest of Your Day, Idiot!"...
Number two...
You want a day of leisure, and/or a lovely present! This is the most reasonable desire.
Here's where it gets stupid. You want an expensive gift and to know that someone cares about... the date. You are not so much focused on the fact that you do, or do not, have a mate who loves you. You need to know that your mate is aware of what day it is. This brings up back to the belief in magic.
What gets me is that most people would scoff at going to a palm reader, but the belief in any type of "magic" is just as crazy as the next. You know I am right if you think about it objectively.
February 14th is a fucking day on a calendar! People have starved to death, and murdered, on this day. It's not important.
Don't get me wrong. I bought my husband a gift, baked the cupcakes, and spent time with my daughter as she made an awesomely terrible card.  He scheduled himself to work today. I will not be spending Valentine's Day with my lover, so I did the most practical thing. I made him feel terrible and bought myself a really expensive bottle of perfume. We will celebrate our love on February 15th. It will be nice.
After all is said and done... At the end of the day, there will be dishes to do, and shitty asses to wipe. That is the true "Happily Ever After...".

Sunday, January 30, 2011

The Importance of Modern Family

My older sister moved to a different city when I was still in high school, so it was hard for us to remain as close as we had been. Since that time we each found our own paths and started our own families. It is the same old tale with most families. We never saw each other like we wanted, but life just traveled on.
When I got pregnant with my first child, she delivered the most honest advice I could have expected. In most cases, you can only really rely on your older sister to be perfectly blunt about the ugly parts of the most beautiful things in life. She came back to town in the summer. Warm weather always reminds me of her visits. We would sit on the back deck and lazily drink Coors Light as our children swarmed around us at seemingly light speed. Her girls were a breath of fresh air in a sea of boys. I ended up having a girl to add to the number, so that was good.  A little over a year ago, I got an email from her that I will never forget. The subject was: Modern Family. The TV show, Modern Family had just premiered and she couldn't be more ecstatic about it. It was funny how it was and how much it reminded her of her own life.
I made a point to TiVo the premiere episode and I loved it. It's rare that I will like a show right from the start. Most shows take time to grow on me. Modern Family had me hooked, and my sister and I shared that link across many miles.
She sent me an email about the last episode before the Winter hiatus that was brief and served mostly to make sure that I'd seen it, and was up to date. This was in either late November, or early December of 2009.
It was so run-of-the-mill.
I wish it was more poignant.
 I wish it had said more... I didn't even respond to it.
It would be the last time I had any contact with her.
My sister was killed on the way home from a Christmas party, one week before Christmas.
She was driving home on a stretch of road that she had driven hundreds of times. She hesitated on a sharp turn and went over into a steep ditch.
I still have the emails she sent me singing the praises of Modern Family, and laughing about it with her family. After she died, I made a pact with myself that I would never miss one episode. Everytime I watch one, I think of my beautiful sister.
Everytime Modern Family wins an award, I think of my sister and how she would have congratulated herself for being able to pick a winner.
It's funny how mundane things can become so important in hindsight.
So, I say congratulations to everyone involved with the show and thank them for helping me have one last connection with my sister.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

From Kid to Kids

I know it has been a while since I have last shown my face around these parts, but the last few months of my pregnancy were just as dramatic as I knew they would be. I am a grade A drama queen, so I will spare you the minutiae. Anyway... All is well now that my beautiful little boy is out of my body and thriving in his swing.
My second, and thankfully last, pregnancy contained many horrific side affects that I didn't have to deal with the first time around. My OB, an angel on earth, had to listen to my every ache and pain and, to tell you the truth, I had some weird shit going on.
The most unexpected and confusing part of having a second baby, is how the first child will react. My daughter is two and I had somewhat of an idea as to how she would respond to my son, but I was still at a loss as to how to respond to her.
First, I will give you a little back story about my daughter. She is an amazing little entertainer. She is a gorgeous green-eyed blonde with a constant smile and a knack for completely pulling the wool over our eyes. She dances, she sings... She makes jokes that are actually funny on a, somewhat, advanced level. The problem is not that she has any animosity toward her new brother, it's that, not unlike the Incredible Hulk or Lennie from Of Mice and Men , she doesn't realize her own strength.  She wants so badly to be able to take care of her brother, but she just ends up hovering over him and slobbering all over his face.
The most important thing, to me, is to make sure that she realizes that things are going to be different. I also want her to know that she is an intergral part of our family. It is so strange. She is just a little girl, and her brother is just a little baby, but they are what makes the world go 'round!
She has grown up so much in the last month. I am astounded everyday. She brings pampies to help diaper her brother, and she soothes him by saying, "Don't fry baby!" She still hasn't mastered the world "cry".
I have noticed that she tries a little harder to get our attention and is a little louder than she use to be, but if that is the worst of it, I think she's doing pretty damn well.