Thursday, August 21, 2014

Thursday Thoughts...Interrupted

I had Thursday Thoughts all laid out and scheduled like usual. A bit of good, a bit of bad, a bit of snark, and an ecard to top it off. Yesterday as I was standing in line on my lunch hour, I thought fuck it. There is too much bad to proceed as usual. And here we are. If you're not in the mood for serious talk, move on now.

For the past two weeks, the news has been the news. Bleak and bullshit everywhere. I can usually just compartmentalize and move on with my day. Not this time. The reaction of people to recent events - both people I know and people I don't know in comments I've read under articles or under the statuses of those I do know on facebook - has just sort of devastated me. Who are these people? Are we all part of the same community?

The Ferguson Situation: I'm waiting to pass judgement on either the cop or Michael Brown since, you know, I wasn't there. Automatically assuming either party is right or wrong because of  position or skin color is dangerous. There are things out there in the media that make the cop look bad and things that make Brown look bad. That's why we don't try cases in the media. Oh wait, yes we do. 

In the aftermath, I am most concerned about people lumping vandals in with those peacefully protesting against what they believe to be abuse and misuse of authority. Everyone in America has the right to peacefully assemble against what they feel is unjust. This community has the right to gather, grieve, and have their voices heard. The assholes in the community do not have the right to loot, vandalize, or attack police who are on the scene to diffuse the situation but those of us watching should not allow them the spotlight and attention. Anyone who thinks the peaceful and the assholes are all the same is an idiot. Main stream media is feeding you what they want you to see. 

The media is setting this up so anyone who thinks it could have been excessive is anti-cop. Let me tell you - I am not anti-cop. I am not a cop, will never be a cop, and will never know what it's like to have to make a split second decision with my life possibly on the line. I am grateful for the service and protection of cops and I know some really good ones. Does that mean every cop has a pure heart and service on his mind? No. 

Can we stop pretending racism and white privilege don't exist? I'm white and I will tell you things have been easier for me. I'm a woman and I will tell you things have been harder for me than they've been for my male counterparts. I am sick of people dismissing these feelings, as if to tell me oh no, that's not right dear - everyone has the same opportunities. Bullshit! Can we stop acting like black men aren't treated differently than white men?  Look into your heart and be really honest with yourself about this. Who among us of any color has not said and thought things we shouldn't have based on gross generalizations and preconceived notions? Most of us won't admit it because it's shameful. We know better than to generalize. 

Racially charged situations still erupt like they did in the 1960s, and we all have a part in fixing that. All of us, white or black.

My Pollyanna wishes...I don't want to point the finger at black or white people for perpetuating anything. I want everyone to stop having such hate in their heart that's been passed down through generations and is based on fear. I want people to stop judging an entire race based on a few encounters or what they see on the news. I want us to approach each other as individuals and if the time comes I want us to be judged as individuals. I want little kids growing up right now to not hear flippant racist remarks that are only "jokes." I don't want anyone of any color to fear mistreatment from police. There are good and bad black people. There are good and bad white people. There are good and bad police officers. There is racism on all sides. 

Ferguson needs some peace and some answers. I hope they get some. I hope everyone gets some. I have a lump in my throat when I think about this. I keep thinking things should not be this way. I feel despair like this will just keep blowing up and never stop and we'll be so busy pointing the finger and drawing race lines that we forget that we're all responsible to repair this community.  

Ice Bucket Challenge: I don't care if you love or hate the ice bucket challenge for ALS (actually I do, but moving on)...the numbers (both the amount raised and the number of new donors) are absolutely incredible. From the ALS website As of Wednesday, August 20, The ALS Association has received $31.5 million in donations compared to $1.9 million during the same time period last year (July 29 to August 20). These donations have come from existing donors and 637,527 new donors to The Association. People are shaming each other for doing it the challenge and shaming each other for not doing it. I myself shamed both group of shamers. No one can win. Except ALS who's taking that money all the way to the research rooms. 

Suicide: I'm still sick over the ignorant comments about suicide and depression in the aftermath of Robin William's death. I pray to God people who have so much wisdom to impart on how to pull yourself up from this never have a child or loved one who is so depressed that they kill themselves because then they'll have to eat their words. 

I'm not even going to go into ISIS beheadings or anything else related to the Middle East. We don't have all day here. 

Some days I can't decide if I want to be on any social media site, and I don't often feel that way. Being in marketing, I know these sites are a huge part of how we communicate and I'm not one to cut myself off from communication. 

Seeing the derisive commentary on all three topics has really made my heart hurt. Like it actually hurts inside my chest. What people are saying, good god. The vitriol and hate on all sides. There is so much fucking hate out there right now. So much arrogance and expertism and know it all-ness. So much talking at and very little talking amongst or talking to. 

Since when did we make such a thing about which side we're on? We love to tell each other how wrong we are. We care more about making our point, criticizing the hell out of everyone and everything, and being right than we do about having important conversations and talking things through. Discourse and idea sharing are what changes the world. We can't do that if we've stopped talking to each other. 

I've said very little about any of these things on my blog. Why is that? Am I afraid to offend people who are cops/black/ice bucket challengers/ice bucket challenge haters/think depression is something you get over after a few days? Do I want to avoid overburdening people who like happy little blog posts with lots of pictures and little text? 

None of the above. I've not written anything because I simply don't know what to say. I don't know how to put what I'm seeing, thinking, and feeling about all of these things in writing. I don't know how to connect the dots, to make a point concisely, to hit it home. To do my part to help people stop spewing hate.

I don't like to write from a place of hurt because my thoughts come too quickly and when translated to print tend to be repetitive, circular, and contain mistakes. I'm not even editing this. I also don't like to write from a negative place because once you put it out there, you can't get it back. I wish people would not write statuses or tweets from a negative place. That would be something, huh? 

The real world feels heavy and ill fitting right now, like it's too tight on my skin. I don't want to stick my head in the sand over it or go on like it's not happening. I don't want to avoid talking about things that matter. 

If you saw this through, thanks. I just had to put it out there. Keeping it in felt untrue to myself. Tomorrow: face products. Come on now, I wouldn't bring you down two days in a row.

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Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Things I think are dangerous

Source
The situation in Ferguson, MO

Trying to please everyone

Counting other people's money

Prison

Acting like a judgy little focker

Not realizing or appreciating what you have

Weaving in and out of traffic

Measuring academic worth by standardized tests

Shopping at Target without a list or budget

Living for the weekends

Using a mandolin slicer without a thumb guard

War (duh)

Driving under the influence and texting while driving

Putting yourself last

Underestimating or overestimating  someone based on age, gender, race, creed, sexual orientation, or the amount of money in their pocket

Having no original thoughts

Going against the crowd for the sole reason of going against the crowd

Letting your kids run the show

Gross generalizations

Walking alone at night

Believing everything you hear

Being unable to stand up for yourself

Carrying a lot of cash

Thinking someone's life is perfect because you can't see evidence of problems

Staying silent about things that matter

Leaving your drink unattended at a bar

There are, of course, a zillion more dangerous things in this world. 
What are some things you think are dangerous?

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Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Summer Salads: Macaroni Salad

This is a very basic salad with no hard and fast measurements, but the next in the summer salads series nonetheless. I'm sharing this because it's a good thing to make to cultivate your taste method of creating good food. Too many people are out there cooking and not tasting as they go. Adding a bunch of crap at the end isn't going to save something. Taste as you go so when you arrive at the end, the dish is to your liking.

Ingredients
1 box elbow macaroni
4 stalks celery, chopped small
1 bell pepper (I typically use orange, yellow, or red), chopped small
1 can crab or 1 cup fresh cooked and picked (optional)
1 can shrimp or 1 cup fresh shrimp, cooked and chopped (optional)
Yellow mustard
Spicy brown mustard
Hellman's Mayo
Sea salt, white pepper (black okay), onion powder, garlic powder, celery salt, garlic salt
Directions
Boil macaroni in salted water according to directions. Drain and store covered in fridge for at least two hours, but overnight is okay.

When you're ready to assemble the salad, put the macaroni in a large bowl with room to move and mix. Add your veggies, crab, and shrimp, then start by adding a cup of mayo and a tablespoon of each mustard. Then the spices - I'd start with about 1/2 tsp of each. Mix well, then taste it. What do you want to taste more of? I typically add more mayo - nothing worse than a dry salad, and let's be honest, macaroni salad is not the place to cut calories - and spices, but not all the spices. I do it by taste, and so should you.

It's a great easy salad to bring to a party or to make on Sunday for the week as a side.

What do you put in your macaroni salad?

***********************
Haikuesday
Condiments: discuss.
Mayo means Hellman's only.
Mustard, up for grabs. 
**********************
 photo orange_zps7f2fb71b.png See Asparagus & corn salad here, See Greek Orzo salad here


Martinis & Bikinis

Monday, August 18, 2014

the weekend that was...

1. Afternoon stroll in Rittenhouse Square on Friday. I also perused LOVE Park but no Philly Jesus sighting.
2. Despite a 30+ minute late train and being crowded by a bunch of jackals standing in the aisles so they could rush out the door first, I was full of glee because Friday night held no plans. I read, picked up a bit around the house, and relaxed until MFD got home from the Neshaminy Soccer Alumni golf outing. We watched some OITNB and vegged.
3. Lori came over Saturday morning and we hit Bed, Bath, & Beyond and Marshalls. I got a few new towels and some fall stuff. It's crazy when you have to buy fall decor in August to make sure the good shit's not gone. Lori also brought me a sweet Christmas sign.
4. We picked up Trevose Pizza and visited Gamma and Pop. Look how much bigger Pop's pants are than they need to be.
Nobody puts Gamma in a corner
5. We took the dogs for a walk, and Geege got a lift on the way home. My Geege is getting old!
6. We hit Target and had a late lunch at Red Robin. Stephen & Aubrey came over and we ordered in.

7. Weekly food prep. Breakfasts - hard boiled eggs, banana, and raw green peppers. Lunches: PB&J on whole wheat or salad with veggies and tuna. Snacks: peaches, plums, cucumber slices, Chobani mango greek yogurt. Dinners: baked chicken/caprese salad/green salad/steamed veggies/pasta salad with veggies.

8. Sunday we were supposed to head to the shore early to get a day in at the beach but it was overcast and rainy. I did some purging, organizing, and hausfrauing. MFD did some work and the lawn, then we headed down the shore for the afternoon.
My hair makes me laugh sometimes.
9. Joseph A. Ferko String Band concert Sunday night in Wildwood. We made it home by 11:10. Holler.
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How was your weekend? Tell me all about it.
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Friday, August 15, 2014

Friday Five: Things You Couldn't Pay Me to Do

1. Be a kid/teenager in this day and age
2. Rock climbing or any type of adventure that has me dangling over a zillion foot drop 
or that could end in some type of 127 Hours situation
3.  Abstain from voting in an election
4. Eat bugs of any kind
5. Give up my dogs

What couldn't someone pay you to do?

Today's lunch time to do list: stalk Philly Jesus and get froyo at Yogorino because #froYOLO. Happy Friday! 

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