Thursday, June 9, 2016

You Gotta Have Faith

You just did the other two faiths in your head,  didn't you??  Ha!  I knew it!

Anyroad, much like flipping your mattress every six months, or standing by your man, I don't think you really have to do what my title says.

Well, maybe you do, and that's cool, I'm not judging.  (Unless your faith is in murder or rape or Trump, you know, something disastrous.  Then I'm  totally Judgey MacJudgerson.)

There have been several times in my life that I have had religious faith.  Hell, in fourth grade I wanted to be a nun.  Which probably would have destroyed the Catholic Church as we know it, so maybe I should have followed through with that.  But in any case, all my forays into Religious Faithdom ended up with me doubting more and more any religious teaching whatsoever so that now I don't believe in any dogma and have two cats.  

I don't even have faith that that terrible joke worked...(it didn't, I'm sure)...but maybe that's what happens when you reduce your concept of "God" to a mythical creature like Santa Claus or the Easter Bunny, just not as generous.

I won't bother going into losing faith in our democratic process, or the judicial system, or beauty products, cause we all swim in that same bullshit sea, amIright?

But the loss of faith that strangely brings me the most comfort is the lack of faith in people. People REALLY suck.  While Santy didn't bring me the bike I wanted for Christmas and God didn't make Drake Tressler like me in 7th grade, the disappointment and heartbreak actual human beings have given me is what has put me in an emotional wasteland.  And I like it here.

Oh, I still cry when I watch Field of Dreams, my heart swells with love whenever I see my kids, and my friends are the best.  But 90% of my life I float along, aware of the stupidity, the meanness, the lack of compassion, and  I view it all as though I'm on a distant planet (I wish!  One-way ticket to Risa, please!).  I no longer subscribe to your religion, people.  Namaste.

It's calm here.  Bullshit still happens (have you read my posts about my job??) but it doesn't phase me.  Just a humorous anecdote to share over adult beverages.  I may not have the joys I had when I was still invested in people, but I also don't have the gut-wrenching pain, and I don't miss that at all.  I  have no expectations of life, and  therefore I am never disappointed.  

I'm sure this state I refer to as Faith Understandably Completely Knockered, (you figure it out) is probably largely due to age.  You naturally care less as you get older.  It's the creepy amusement park ride operator's way of telling you the roller coaster is slowing down, so just sit back and enjoy the ride.

Please do not read this rambling as a cry for pity or a "poor me" post.  I am in the best place I have ever been in my life.  I am proud of my accomplishments; I have weathered my tribulations (some of which are good stories, and I will write about them later); and I am still here and thriving.  Being faithless is the best thing that ever happened to me.  

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

How Did We Get to Here From There?

This morning:
 
Coworker:  They want to impeach our Governor.
Me: Sure, why not?
Coworker:  They should impeach our President.
 
I just walked away, cause I believe murder is wrong, and I didn't have my non-existent gun on me, but it really angered me.  I mean REALLY angered me.
 
I know I am surrounded by a bunch of knee-jerk conservatives, but I come from a long line of knee-jerk conservatives. 
 
In high school, I was an anti-war supporter during Vietnam.  I wore a black armband and refused to say the Pledge of Allegiance in homeroom.  My parents disapproved of my behavior, and thought the war was justified (even though it was being perpetuated by a Democrat and they were die-hard Republicans).  Their attitude irritated me and we had some heated arguments about it, but I never got really angry about it, nor did they.
 
Back when the Watergate Hearings were happening, my father and I had many discussions about Nixon.  In my father's eyes, RMN could do no wrong, despite the fact that before both our sets of eyes, we were watching the truth unfold.  But I never was angry at  daddy for his beliefs, even though I felt them to be wrong. 
 
When the Roe v. Wade decision was handed down by the Supreme Court, I don't remember a lot of  backlash.  There was no such thing, as I remember, as Pro-Life and Pro-Choice.  There were people who were totally against abortion and would never have one, but they didn't see anything wrong with women obtaining one legally under safe medical conditions, instead of in a back room with a rusty coat hanger.   
 
(You will notice I use the phrase "as I remember" a lot.  That's because in the early 70's  my diet consisted mainly of gin and tonics and random drugs, so I may have missed a lot of what was actually happening.  Good times.)
 
But my point is, in spite of the political/moral divisions I had with those closest to me,  we were all rational about our differences. 
 
Now every time someone disagrees with me, I feel a Hulk attack coming on. 
 
I am sure there are people more politically savvy then myself (which would include almost everyone except my cats) who have a logical, though long-winded, explanation for the reason there is a cloud of anger/bitterness/righteousness that hangs over our country and makes us all feel like going postal.  I probably wouldn't understand it, though, if I heard it.  Those years of gin/tonic/drugs have taken their toll.
 
But I do believe that all this almost palpable negativism is the cause for the rise of cute animal videos.  You have to do something to calm down so you won't kill your fellow employees.  I guess. 
 
The result of all this National Crankiness is that it makes me feel old.  I worked hard in my youth to stand up for what I believe is right, and we had a couple of victories.  For a while the country chugged forward with people still disagreeing, but generally just staying out of each other's way.  And now it's all gone haywire, and I find myself caught up in it.  If my coworker doesn't like Obama, that's her business and her right.  I mean, 'Murica, right?  Her random comment (inappropriate as it seems to me) about impeaching him shouldn't make me shoot red laser beams out of my eyes and reach for my phaser.  This is not me.  Has someone been spiking my PBR? 
 
But, hey, have you seen that YouTube of that cat in that box??  It's adorable!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


Thursday, December 10, 2015

Even If I Don't Fits, I Sits

With two notable exceptions, I have never fit in with where I am.  I was a ten-month baby, and in my mind, it was because along around 9 1/2 months I realized who I would be living with and was, like, "Whoa, these are not the droids I want."  (I was one of the early Indigo Children).  Anyroad, I ended up with them and always seemed like a stranger in a strange land.  I was definitely a part of the family unit, but I always felt like I was wearing a pair of undies that were too small and kept riding up my butt.
 
School was the same way.  Then I had a brief fling with theatre, but we broke up, because theatre wasn't into long-term commitments.  My first job in The Real World was with the FBI and I don't think I have to tell you my comfort level there.  (Though the NYC Office was cooler than the Pittsburgh Office.  I got to be in NYC for the birth of Disco, it was glorious.)  
 
My first notable exception was during my motherhood/wife-life phase.  Until the wife-life tanked, which led to the second notable exception when I got back together with my high school boyfriend, theatre; with the understanding that either of us could pull out whenever we wanted. (TWSS, but it should be noted that theatre broke up with me last year, and we got back together in August.)
 
ANYROAD, all of the above is just exposition to my point today, which is I don't feel comfortable in the current social environment.  I know I am not alone in this, thank Dionysus, but it hit home this morning when I  heard a woman in my office say, "I don't understand gun control."  Now, I don't know if she meant she doesn't understand how it works (or, actually, doesn't work), or if she doesn't understand why we need it.  But either way, I can't wrap my head around it.  Surely, she doesn't think it's okay for a mentally unstable human being to walk into a school and shoot people.  Doesn't she realize that stricter gun regulations may have prevented that man from obtaining a gun?  Why am I asking you?  You guys are on my side (I'm guessing)...you know this. 
 
But it's shit like this, and shit like people believing that Trump is an actual human being capable of national leadership, and not Zombie Hitler, that just make me want to crawl into a hole (although a comfy hole, with my cats and beer and Netflix) and never emerge. 
 
I thought we fixed this in 1970, people!  You mean I wore a black armband, refused to salute the flag and worshipped John Lennon for NOTHING??  
 
Well, it just proves, once again, that Star Trek was right...resistance is futile. And, if I have to accept the inevitability of assimilation, I supposed I can be comforted by the fact that I"ll get Jeri Ryan-like tits. 
 
But I'd rather people would quit shooting each other.
 
 
 
 


Wednesday, December 2, 2015

In Memoriam

When I was 15, I decided I wanted to be an actor.  My mother was aghast.  She was sure this would lead to me having sex all the time.  (She was always afraid I was going to be have sex all the time.  How wrong can you get.) Anyroad, my aunt thought me taking acting lessons was a wonderful idea and, wanting more than anything to please her new sister-in-law, my mother signed me up for Saturday morning acting lessons at the Pittsburgh Playhouse.
 
My teacher was Thom Thomas.  Thom was on the faculty of Point Park College (affiliated with the Playhouse).  He had graduated from Carnegie-Mellon and worked briefly in LA.  He was in the process of starting a summer theatre in Pittsburgh, The Odd Chair Playhouse.
 
It is no exaggeration to say that Thom Thomas changed my life.  He told me I had some ability.  He taught me the basics of theatre, including theatre etiquette, which is just as important as acting.  I worked at Odd Chair for seven years, attended Point Park because I wanted to continue studying with him, and grew from a lonely, insecure little girl into a woman who found her calling and her tribe.
 
A few years ago, we became FB friends.   I took that opportunity to express to Thom how much I loved and admired him and to thank him profusely for giving me a love for theatre, which truly made me into the Debbie I Was Meant to Be.
 
I'm so glad I did that.  Thom passed away  today, and I can't stop crying.  With the exception of my kids, no one has ever had such an enormous positive effect on my life.  In addition to being terrified of me becoming a sex machine, my mother was also convinced that I would commit suicide.  Perhaps I would have, if I hadn't met Thom... that's how important he was to me.
 
Rest in peace, my dear, dear, teacher, mentor,  and friend.  I'm sure I'm just one of many lives you rescued. 
 
 


Tuesday, September 29, 2015

There's no earthly way of knowing....

Hi, guy(s)!  Long time no blog.  I think about writing about something every now and again, but then I get all paranoid that I've written about that before, and I'm lazier than I am paranoid, so I don't check to see if I've written about it and just play solitaire instead.  It's my circle of life.
 
But now I'm reading Jenny Lawson's second book, Furiously Happy, and she's so brave and honest (and hysterical) in writing about all her demons, I figured I can afford to let my Senility Slip show a little under my Supposedly Perfect Journalistic Dress.  So if I've written about this before, fuck all y'all, I'm doing it again.
 
When I was younger, I thought I would handle advancing age better then I am.  I pictured Fred and me retired in a smallish, but exquisite cottage by the sea, with the kids visiting regularly and frequent trips to the British Isles and Europe.  Fred would putter in the garden and I'd meet my equally chubby aging friends in town for a champagne cocktail or two and witty repartee.
 
So I end up working forty hours a week at The Most Conservative Law Firm Ever, living in a lovely, though dilapidated apartment with two cats, scraping together the cash to see my kids a couple times a year,  and drinking beers at Rojo with a bunch of young actors.  I AM NOT COMPLAINING!!!  I love my life as it is now, and shit happens and this is where I am and I can't imagine  ending up  any other way and feeling so right about it.
 
No one's life turns out the way they expect it to.....that's how the game is played, figuring out what to do when you pull a Bad Luck card out of the deck.  I think, all things considered, I've weathered the shitstorms in my life fairly well, at least I've survived them all. 
 
But I guess I thought by now I'd be content, have all the answers to life  at my fingertips and radiate a Peaceful Worldwise Glow.  The only glow I radiate now is after one of the aforementioned evenings at Rojo.  And I know nothing, NOTHING!!!
 
I am still continually shocked, dismayed, horrified, surprised and freaked-out by pretty much everything that goes on in the world, except by my kids and my cats, because my kids are the Two Most Amazing People on the Planet, and....cats.  I fought in the Hippie Wars (1968-1972) to eradicate useless wars, racism, homophobia, and misogyny, and look out the window, people....THAT SHIT'S STILL HAPPENING!!!  Plus, we had the extra bonus of Richard Nixon shooting himself in the foot so politicians would then change their selfish, greedy ways, and well...see above sentence. It's disheartening.
 
But overall, I don't think I would go back and change anything I've done in my life.  (Except dating Bad Steve.  That was definitely my Life's Ultra Stoopy Moment.)  Because all those things I've done helped create what is rapidly turning into the Finished Product, and I'm pretty pleased with the result.  It's kinda like I started out with the intention to make Miso Soup and I ended up cooking Tater Tot Casserole, with extra cheese and bacon. 
 
I might not be as good for you, but I'm a helluva lot more delicious.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


Thursday, May 7, 2015

I Want to Be Alone (Sometimes)

There are many advantages to being a Semi-Recluse:
 
1.  You can do what you want, when you want
2.  Your domicile can be a Hoarders candidate, because no one sees it but you
3.  Your jokes are always funny
4.  You never waste time juggling events on your social calendar
5.  Being awkward with yourself is easier than being awkward with actual people
 
But since I am just in the Semi Stage of Reclusivity (great things take time), when I actually interact with people after a 3-4 day hiatus, it can be tricky. (I do interact with my co-workers on a daily basis, but I don't consider them "actual people".)
 
For example:
 
I have to mute my audible stream of consciousness. (I talk all the time at home, it amuses the cats.  I only hope they are recording my constant flow of wisdom for when they publish my biography.)
 
I have to wear a bra. 
 
I have to close the bathroom door.
 
I can't fall asleep in the middle of a conversation.
 
I have to keep my cursing to a minimum.  (Ha! Ha! JK!! If I quit swearing, people would think there was something fucking wrong with me.)
 
So far I've been able to make the transition pretty well.  I imagine, though, as old age arrives (approximately 37 minutes), it will be more difficult.  So if you see me walking the streets in my jammies, ranting about that time in college Martin almost got us arrested, just call Rojo and J Clyde to come and get me.  They know the drill.
 
 
 


Thursday, April 9, 2015

Sorghum Lives

Since working in The South, I have been accused several times at various jobs of being rude.  When I worked in The North, (in Pittsburgh and New York)  I was never accused of this. 
 
There are three possible explanations:
 
1.  I was born with a latent CrankyPants Gene, which did not develop till I stepped over the Mason-Dixon Line;
 
2.  The intense Southern humidity triggered my genetic Irish predilection to drink beer, eat shamrocks and be a bitch-on-wheels;
 
3.  My concept of Business Professionalism and my Southern employers' concept of BP are incompatible.
 
(There is no right or wrong answer to this quiz.  Your opinion matters.  Personal mileage may vary.)
 
Due to my above-mentioned predilection to beer and my cats' love of food, I have had to adjust to SBP (Southern Business Professionalism) in order to maintain my present employment status, but it ain't been easy.  I believe in calling a spade a spade (but in the metal yard tool kind of way, not the racist slur kind of way), so if I have to put your call on hold for a millisecond while I transfer you I will say, "Hold on", not "Well fiddle-dee-dee, I hate it, but I'm going to have to put y'all on hold for a hot minute and I dooooo so apologize, but I promise it won't be but a sec, bless your heart!", cause I got shit to do. (Those WWF games don't play themselves!)
 
I've become pretty adept at the whole Sir and Ma'am thingy, although my inner child cringes every time I say it because when I was a kid, if I said "Yes, ma'am" to my mother she yelled at me (her favorite phrase being, "You little snot!").  She took that to mean I was being a SmartAss, which I probably was, but I grew up thinking ma'am was a derogatory term. 
 
I also have a sneaking suspicion (another Irish trait) that plainly speaking your mind might be considered fine and dandy for males but totally unladylike, bordering on sluttish, for females.  But, surely, in this 21st Century world of total equality, that can't be the case.  (Sarcasm is one of my favorite Irish traits.)
 
Well, as the old saying goes, "Fuck 'em if they can't take a joke."...no, wait, wrong saying..."When in Rome..."--that's the one I was looking for.  I will never consider myself A Southerner, but I've managed to develop a respectable camouflage that's kept me afloat the last 35 years. 
 
Although I still don't care for Southern comedies and if you tell me to have a Blessed Day, I'm likely to kick you in your genitalia. Old habits die hard.