Saturday, August 8, 2015

Pretty Girl Syndrome

This blog contains my thoughts and it is as anonymous as I could make it (minus a tiny photo of me in a skirt.) So maybe knowing that I'm a woman makes me qualified to write this blog. Or maybe an observing man would see things better. Or instead of better, an average Joe would have a different view. Here are my thoughts on beauty and youth...

Pretty Girl Syndrome (PGS) is a sense of entitlement that older teens and women think they are owed simply because they are attractive to the majority of others around them. In time they lose their youthful beauty, but they still behave as if they deserve special treatment. Perhaps they did not get the memo that they are losing their looks, but its irrelevant to them in the onset of PGS. When they understand that they have to fend for themselves like everyone else has been in the world, they lose the syndrome.

The people/society surrounding them makes them who they are in respect to their entitlement. Take me for a running example: When I turned 18, I started having cars stop to ask if I needed a ride during my one mile walk to work. It was weird. Growing up in a house where I was not complimented on my looks made this entire blog content neutral to me. Until I turned 18. But growing up on a organic blueberry farm in seclusion as a child, my (now) step-sister joked that my theme song was, "Never make a pretty woman your wife," laughing that, "there was hope for me." As children we largely raised ourselves and kept to ourselves in school, so the subject of beauty in society was for someone else.

I had no interest in dating and in high school the feeling was mutual. The first compliment I got was from my my step sister's best friend, who mentioned that I must have, "looked amazing" as my step sister and I got ready for Spring Break by trying on bikinis. I thought she was insulting me. But by that time, I was use to getting insults about my appearance.

I've always insisted that I have never been a victim, except in the beginning stages (18 years old) of being treated like a good looking woman. I felt awkward, confused, and generally embarrassed by my adult body. Men can spot that insecurity quickly, and without a solid foundation intellectually, spiritually, or physically, I was often treated terribly by the first man to show me attention.

Like the Rolling Stone song, "I wish I knew what I know now, when I was younger," God does this strange thing where we embrace our divine given gifts often a bit too late. At 36 (and damn proud of it) I realize a ride given to me to get home now is done out of kindness (which is rare) rather then a shot at getting laid.

Not many people could related to my sophomoric poetry at that time either. Poems that call admirers "Predators with prey in their clutches. Vampires who think a kiss will consume their soul and make them whole." People are not created equal. Good poetry finds a foundation that levels the playing field.

So that's my long winded story. Some women take it rather hard when the reality hits them that they are not anyone's muse by site alone. Some resort to plastic surgery. I know a few women whose husband left them for that muse with a built in beauty-timer ready to detonate ever so slowly. That power she has will go up in smoke as well, just like the woman before her.

Side Note: I realized again that the internet is not advancing us in certain ways. It unifies complex ideas so large masses can understand them more simply. This ties into the concept of beauty. Okay:

My mean step-sister had an otherworldly beauty. Her beauty was a veneer for two thousand insecurities that manifested themselves in the form of a distant, cold and heartless snob. But her beauty was a self made image: Victorian white skin shown with her, 'Just got out of bed' style of putting on the clothes closest to reach: A jean skirt, and a spaghetti string chemise that showed her hand drawn tattoo on the center of her back. She often sat with a journal on her lap, which she would be writing in while sitting on her brick stairs, waiting for me to meet up with her for an adventure.

Can the Internet capture that type of beauty? Can it bring one's highly polished idea of what is beautiful to each individual person? I knew my step-sister for so long that I felt I could see all her turmoil and arrogance when her green eyes turned my way. She had ideas, a high level of intelligence, and it came off naturally and seemly effortlessly. I'm sure right about now, with her being about six months older then me, she is feeling the pain of PGS.

A brilliant instructor at the community college level (in Redding, California of all places...a few gems in the worse of places) told the class that the only people in life that matter are the rich and beautiful. Those two categories get a pass for privilege. I believe he overestimated the later, but I believe him.

The cat calls slowly died down. Faster then molasses, but its almost invisible if you are not on high alert. No hottie wakes up one morning to find that all those secret privileges vanished. My first move to Austin (at 33) was the last of the preferential treatment. From doctors telling me that I was 'lovely' to a job interview with a (would be) fellow employee telling me that I was a pretty girl, to a man asking me if I needed a ride on a hot day. That was all inside one week! Three years later and that same doctor recently said, "Get your shit together! You're almost 40." Errrk!

You can't just go up to one of these fading beauties, like Tennessee Williams created so colorfully in his plays, and say, "Give it up. You lost your looks. Join the rest of us. Take the bus." I was not that attractive anyway.  I can't imagine how someone like, say, Uma Thurman goes from being called The World's Most Beautiful Woman, to press calling her old and irrelevant.

Side Note: A well known actress (Maggie Gyllenhaal) tried out for a movie which she would play a woman married to a 57 year old actor. She was 37. They told her she was, "Too old for the role."

I always figured that there was a general interest to see if the exterior matched with the interior. When I was 23 and living in San Francisco, seeing a woman dressed in a unique, well put together manner intrigued me. I just wish that someone would have told me that I was attractive when I actually was attractive. The result was wondering why men would try to sleep with me and not tell me what they saw in me...ever. Or my girlfriends. You know a woman is a true friend when they encourage your self worth and add that you are beautiful. If they are not encouraging you, then they are not real friends.

Oh and Pretty Girl Syndrome women use that annoying, rude and snobbish behavior on other women who have PGS. It's not just something a women pulls on a man to see how far he will go to get laid that day. No! They use people as stepping stones and believe they have some special quality because they had great cheekbones at 20. News to them: A dentist told me that people unconsciously grind their teeth in their sleep, and with age, stress, and plain living, the cheekbones sink down permanently. Just like these PGS people need to sink down from their high horse. There is a thick line between PGS, which is something society creates in them and some don't exploit, and being a narcissist. One type of afflicted person will one day realize and deal with their hang-ups. The latter are scavengers who stop at nothing to get where they feel taken care of, at anyone's expense. If you helped a narcissist, don't expect a 'Thank you' note for your support in their time of need anytime soon. You won't find that 'thank you note' in your mailbox; not in this world.

Call me superficial for pointing out the truth. Why do we care more about the murder of Dorothy Stratten (who died at 20), then my ex fiancee's one time wife (Rachel Aria...I remember her), who died at the same age? Same way too. One woman's life was a caption in a worthless news paper in an impoverished city in California. The other had two movies made about her short life, and a Pulitzer Prize winning article written about her. The entire industry of Hollywood is just one example. The topic of beauty, and our attraction to attraction is there whether you choose to ignore it or embrace it. People care about beauty.

So slowly, my looks are on a par with anyone you'd see at a line in a grocery store. Slowly but has almost come to an end. The free ride is gone before I got stoked that I had the ride, but [she] don't care. Now I care. Okay, I care, I care. Give me a refund for that unused ticket please!

But then again, by this age, I've established myself in the world. As long as I am learning, evolving, and open to ideas, challenges and changes, I'm good to go! The preferential treatment was good while it lasted, and I'm grateful that I got to take part in a golden path; even if my path was flaking near the end of my youth.

Besides, yesterday a girlfriend told me what cream she uses; her secret for a perfect looking complexion.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Passive Aggressiveness in the English Language

I don't know how much the world has affect/afflicted me since I started this blog in late 2007. Diablo Cody said that Twitter was a joke (actual words: A Circle Jerk), because every word has to be written perfectly because of political correctness. Since I read her book, "Candy Girl", and I respected her written word so much, I was inspired when she said that she missed the age of the Blog. Well baby, I never had a Twitter account.

Side Note: When my apartment manager is telling residents to vote for Donald Trump simple because, "[I] am tired of all this Political Correctness!" we have stormy weather coming.

There are a few blogs left in me, and this one is a long time coming. It's basically a essay in response to "The Evasion English Dictionary" by Maggie Balistreri. Language is all we have to communicate ideas that are not primal (dancing, sex for base engagement). From reading her short book on the topic of skirting what you are saying, I took from it that its more proper to add a lot of 'pleases' and silence rather then get to the fucking point.

Another side note: I'll admit in some of her examples she seems presumptuous rather then correct. But the main idea stays: People are cowardly communicators. Why? Someone wrote our language that way? Why? That I do not know. Why? Because the only language I have a handle on is American English. I don't know if people in general share passive behavior embedded in all language, or if American English does alone and as a result, weird side effects occur: Like forming an ARMY that is the largest industrial complex in the world and not referring to its employers as 'killbots.'

Here is one example of Balistreri's book: The "LIKE" in a sentence. As in "filler like" 
Translation: I finished my sentence.
Example 1:
-How could you do that? I  mean, I went out of my way to meet you there, and then you didn't show, and you didn't even call, and it was like...
Example 2:
Let's see if we can't work something out. I have to go to my supervisor to approve this raise, and she's gonna ask me what you've done for the company to distinguish yourself, and I'm gonna be like....

Get it? Make no mistake that Balistreri is trying to be funny, but there is something that sits heavily in the pit of my stomach when I stopped laughing. In a broader form of examples like the two above, what we are getting is a lack of communication and a sarcasm that is not kind, nor direct.

A few more examples: BUT
But= bu(llshi)t
Example 1:
I see your point...bu(llshi)t I think we should do it this way.
Example 2:
I'm married to a wonderful man, loving, witty, a doting father to our three children, bu(llshi)t lately I've wondered what it would be like to be single again, get a fresh start.

Lets try whatever
the self-pitying whatever
Translation: Why do I always have to be the martyr?
Example 1:
Never mind that I'm the one who came up with the idea in the first place, but whatever. 
Example 2:
I don't know why its called a group project because I did all the work, but whatever.

Or: The doubting thomas whatever
Example 1:
It's over. She actually gave me the It's-not-you-it's-me line. Whatever.

Lets try sensitive=insensitive 
Example 1:
I had to walk out of the movie. It was too sad. It would have just made me cry and cry and cry. You have to understand; I'm really sensitive. 

Side Note: It's worth pointing out that Martin, my friend and fellow Linguistic student said that above sentence alone shows a presumptive nature that he did not agree with in this book. Also, I thought Martin was hot.

Another example: The oh, well 
The passive-aggressive never battles, and never loses. 
Example 1:
Wow. That's a pretty good raise. You must be a better negotiator than I am. Oh, well. 

Last example: like
the betrayer like
Translation: I lie.
We like, fell in love on the spot.
I was so upset I cried for like, three days.
You bring up a good point, and I like, totally sympathize with you; however...

Okay, one more for real, because it's funny:
The cowardly like
Translation: I disagree. That is, if it's okay.
I don't want to like, tell you what to do, but it just doesn't sound, like nice.
Did you like, misspell that? [fuck it, says this blog writer.]

I'm passive-aggressive. Last example:
The undercutting like
Translation: I'm not smart; I'm cool. I don't know where I picked up that knowledge.
Example 1:
I think he meant it like, metaphorically.
Example 2: That was by like, Beethoven.
Example 3: I think it's like, N-i-e-t-z, then, s-c-h-e, or something. I don't know.

Okay, really!
Translation: It's not grudging, it's begrudging.
Example 1:
I hate to say I'm holding out for something better...
Example 2:
The dress was nice enough. I mean, it's not that. It's just, well, I hate to say she's fat...

A favorite whatever:
The faltering cliche whatever
Translation: Insert psychobabble here.
I thought it was gonna help me work through my inner demons, or emotional wounds or whatever. It didn't.

Everyone's favorite whatever:
the minced oath whatever
Translation: Fuck you.
Example 1:
I tried to explain that my computer crashed but she's such a bitch, she just said she didn't believe me and that she was gonna give me an F. I said, "Whatever," and left her office.
Example 2:
Big fat cop pulls me over and he's all, "Son, do you realize how fast you were going, I'm gonna have to give you a ticket." and I was just, whatever.

Point being, this is the norm in conversation. Balistreri speculations are fun and often funny, but also often true. Linguist Steve Pinkerton once asked, "Why do we ask someone we are interested in, "Can you pass the salt? Rather then saying, "After this dinner, do you want to fuck?" Here is my question, in this blog that I've been meaning to write about how we as humans communicate in whatever geographical region suits our customs: If language is all we have to communicate, does vague speech and cryptic dialog affect our daily connections more adversely because it's more negative and passive aggressive?

There are certain books, people, and concepts that fit a stage of one's life perfectly, like a missing puzzle piece. This book came at a time when I began to think that I was hard on myself because for decades I believed I deserved nothing better. It was a supernova of a breakthrough in therapy. So for two weeks I spoke with direct eye contact. With a sincere smile. I said what I meant and I hid behind nothing. Because honestly, I can act tough, but I know that people will bury us yet people can be our salvation, when we want to be saved. So I let my real self shine on for fourteen entire days. At the time, my happiness eventually annoyed my (now ex) fiancee, and he pulled the rug out from under me with a hateful comment.
I lost my confidence after that. Giving people power so that a hateful comment can make me lose my footing makes me question whether I am faking it.

James Joyce's famous last words were: "Does no one understand?"
I'd rather mine be, "I love you all."- Said at an old age, surrounded by loved ones.

A classic tangent.
Fuck Twitter too.
I am maladjusted; that seems to sell tickets.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

When Intellectuals Throw Down

I've been wanting to put this video up for a while now, because there has been a lot of hype about William F. Buckley as of late due to a memoir that has been written by his son, Christopher. Before I talk, maybe I should pick up one of his books. But my time is restricted to reading books I know are not written by possible antisemitics, so instead I am posting this so we can all have a good hearty laugh at his stuffy accent. Gore Vidal sued Buckley for public slander (he was called a homosexual by Buckley.) Vidal had affairs with Anais Nin, as well as some men. An interesting fact about the feud between Buckley and Vidal is that it never ended. When asked how he felt about Buckley Jr.'s death by a New York Times reporter, Vidal responded, ""I thought hell is bound to be a livelier place, as he joins forever those whom he served in life, applauding their prejudices and fanning their hatred"

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

My Hope...

Zev Rathe at seven weeks

Friday, February 27, 2015

Short and Sweet

I've always told my friends that the only qualification I have for a partner is that they can always beat me in speed chess. 
I'm not interested in playing Twister. 

Friday, October 31, 2014

One Answer to Cynicism

More often then not, I tend to fall back on what I learned in college as truth, not rhetoric. Especially a Ethics class I took at the community college level before I transfered to a University. We live alone, we die alone, we dance together.

At 25, I worked at a French Cafe outside of Annapolis, Maryland. In the five years, off and on working there, I only had three rude customers. A decade later, I still miss some of them. But there was a time in my personal life that interfered with my happiness.

An understatement.

I came to work on my scooter one day, with no hope that this day would be any different, and the stress and heartbreak at the time was unbearable. Walking into the main office to drop off my backpack, the owner pointed to a guitar standing up, and said it was mine. I was thoroughly confused. And overly excited. There was a letter taped to the guitar, in an envelope with one word written in a thick, black marker: Rose. After reading the letter, I called who the one person who I thought would have done this, and got no confirmation. Later it occurred to me who did this, which makes it all the more awesome. And yes, I cried from joy, and surprise, and the fact that someone could be so kind with nothing in return. So the concept of Egoism (the one that made me lose so much hope over the years) is bullshit. And this is why:

Dear Rose,

Word has gotten around about your desire to do some guitar playing.
Well, you will need a guitar, hence my little brown friend.

I found him for sale in a parking lot at a Grateful Dead show in Atlanta
around 1987. I had flown into Atlanta for the shows (there were two) and I
was desperate for a guitar so as to join in on the parking lot jamming that
was a trademark event at all Dead show parking lots.

I bought him from a New York Deadhead who needed money for gas to
get home. His history before then is a mystery, but being found in a Dead
show parking lot helps to give the guitar great MoJo.

He hasn't been doing much lately, so I cleaned him up and strung him
with very light strings. Still, your finger tips will get a little sore until you
build up some callouses.

He's not a particularly "great" guitar, but he's friendly and eager to be
used. I would move up to medium lights as soon as your fingers can take it
as he won't sound his best with the light set I put on him.

I'm sure he'll be a good guitar to learn on. He is modest and earnest.
(something we could never say about an electric guitar)

He will need to come back home one day, but only after you've tired of
him or have upgraded to a better axe. When you are done with him, just
leave him leaning up somewhere in the front of the shop and I'll see him
and bring him home.

You might want a tuning fork, the little music shop near your shop will
have one and they can show you how to tune with one.

Have fun and don't worry about bumps and scratches.



P.S.His name is Harvey, like the big white rabbit. (I think he was a Pooka
before becoming a guitar or he may still be a Pooka pretending to be a
guitar. If you're not sure what a Pooka is, rent the old Jimmy Stewart movie,


I'm fairly positive I know who the person is behind the awesomeness. One day I was working and moody, and a musician asked me what was wrong. I wanted a guitar, but I told him I'd never be able to afford one. That was about five months before this generous deed. I knew his wife as well. Both very unpretentious, beautiful souls in an environment of snobbery and pretense (Annapolis is the Yacht capital of the country, if not the world.)

After this gift, I never saw either the musician or his wife again. He wanted nothing from me at all. Just to help make me a happier person. The following day I posted a handwritten thank you note on the cafe door with a rose. It stormed that day, and I found my gushing thanks you letter near a storm drain, soaked and illegible.

The timing of this anonymous guitar was divine. There are some things that are too personal (or controversial) even for this blog. But it gave me such hope, when I was in the ninth circle of hell. This man will never know how much that meant to me, and that is the only sad aspect to this story.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Since I Very Rarely Pee My Pants-

Best of Craigslist:

You Farted During "Boyhood" - mw4m
There we were, just enjoying a nice quiet Saturday night at the movies. A slow mover, Linklater's "Boyhood." Some popcorn. A few sodas. Nothing really happens in the film, we found. For about 90 minutes or so we stare listlessly at the screen. It's a thinking man's film, I say. Beautifully shot. It's about life, and death and relationships and things of that nature. Just then, at a brief, carefully-timed cinematic pause in dialogue, an enormous fart from somewhere in the back pierces an otherwise silent movie theatre. It had the impact of a baseball bat hitting a leather couch, or George Foreman working the heavy bag. Whack. Loud, deep and masculine.The seat cushion heroically absorbed most of the blow, but not enough that each and every person in the movie theatre instantly burst into nervous laughter. The laughter continued for what felt like a good 5 minutes, until tears streamed down our faces. Even well after the blast, we quietly chuckled to ourselves with a 'remember the time that guy farted in the movie theatre' gleam in our eyes. And just like that, with a soft chuckle and a deep breath, we were back into the film. Things happened, people drove around Texas, relationships came and went, there was crying, there was hope. It was as if we had all forgotten about the fart that had brought us together that night. As the sun began to set on screen, the teenage boy, no longer a boy, transitions into an adult, before our very eyes, and looks, intently, lustfully into a young girls eyes, as if to lean in for a kiss, and braaaaaaap. Another fart from the back row, like two giant hands clapping together, and the screen goes dark, roll credits. We decided, after laughing our way out of the theatre, and all the way home, that this was the best movie that we had ever seen. I imagine the lone fartist sauntering off into the sunset. His work here done.
If only I could say thank you, kind sir. You are truly a master of your craft.
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