Thursday, August 30, 2012

Time for a Push

Posted by She Said

I’ve always believed our culture evolved in a manner similar to a pendulum moving. Advancements in women’s rights and GLBT rights, for example, come with a pushing back by those who don’t want change, but change comes nonetheless. It may not be as fast or as complete as those pushing may want, but advancements ARE made. The push, and subsequent push-back, mimics the movement of the pendulum. Our culture evolves from this motion.

Recently, however, there has been such an incredible insurgence of people pushing our culture back, back, back. That pendulum is flying so hard back to the early 20th century that I feel like I’ve been bitch-slapped. And what are those that fought so hard for advancements in women’s rights, in GLBT rights, and in science doing? I for one feel like I have been standing here watching the train wreck that is our culture. I’m so shocked by stories in the news, DAILY! news, of things being said and done that are chiseling away our advancements, and not subtly either. These are big chunks coming out of culture’s advancements. And all this hate and intolerance is just pulling all the crazies out, making them mainstream. It wouldn’t be an ordinary day anymore without hearing about some other white man redefining rape or “traditional” marriage.

You know what I’m talking about, right? Legitimate rape. Life begins two weeks before conception. Don’t want to get pregnant? - put a dime between your legs. Magical vaginas that know how to “shut down” a pregnancy resulting from rape. Radio station cancels public affairs program over interview with LGBT advocate. Don’t look like a white politician? Better carry papers. Want contraception? - you must be a slut. Pray the gay away! Evolution is a theory and can’t be taught in schools. And the list painfully goes ON and ON and ON.

My stages of grief over this attack on our advancements have been clearly visible. I have certainly been in denial about this cultural war. Certainly this craziness has got to stop! I’ve been depressed about this backlash on women, immigrants, the GLBT community, science. This is all so unbelievably sad! Now, I am angry. I’m absolutely pissed that hate seems to be the norm for so much of our society today. I’m pissed that people are publically speaking their racist, homophobic, misogynist, and anti-reason minds and HAVEN’T BEEN CALLED OUT ON IT ENOUGH. I’m pissed that our push-back hasn’t been as loud and visible as the crazies has been. I’m pissed that so many haters don’t see it as JUST THAT – HATE.

But I guarantee there will be one stage of grief I will never reach. I will never accept. I will never accept that hate will win out over love. I will never accept that there are more intolerant people in our country than those who cherish and respect differences in others. I will never accept.

It’s time we woke up and dust off our <insert any number of groups under attack here> rights signs and proudly display them again! Get out there and have your voice heard! Enough is enough. Let’s push back, people! PUSH BACK!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Ready, Set, GO, GO, GO!!!!

Posted by She Said

I absolutely adore this time of year. I cherish the change in the air, that crispness that tells me fall is coming. I’ve been noticing some leaves in our neighborhood starting to change color. Granted, I hope they aren’t DYING because of the lack of water around these here parts lately – I shake my fist at you climate change!

The oranges and lush warm hues that seem to work their way into every store window makes me happy. The idea of curling up with a book by the fireplace under a soft throw thrills me. Yes, fall is my favorite time of year!

And it’s not.

Sadly, my idyllic image of quiet fall strolls through leaf covered streets falls short of reality, the reality that is our life this time of year. Fall  signals the ramping up of the busiest four months of the year for us.

It starts with soccer. Two kids, so two soccer practices and two games a week – both at different places, but sometimes at the same time! That’s in addition to all the gobs of stuff they are suddenly responsible for in school. Projects? Book Reports? Homework!

Both of the kids’ birthdays are also sprinkled around Halloween and Christmas. Oh, all the holidays! There’s Halloween, VOTING DAY!, the Married Geek’s Binary Anniversary, Friendsgiving (our version of Thanksgiving), Christmas, and New Years! OK, I’m just kidding. New Years hasn’t been a holiday since I was in my twenties! It’s more of a “Do you want to try and stay up this year?” kind of event. But still. You get the point. Busy, busy, busy!

So, it is possible that over the next few months I may seem a little crazed (or more than usual), but now you’ll know why. I’m probably trying to blog on my phone and cheer for someone’s team at the same time. Or wrapping presents while typing with my toes. But I love it, because in the end my love of this time of year wins out. Hands down.


Thursday, August 23, 2012

HGTV Needs to Hire Me

Posted by She Said

You probably read the title of this blog and figured I think of myself as a master decorator who wants the likes of HGTV to hire me for one of their numerous design shows. If that’s the case, your guess would be akin to pitching during a football game – yeah, that far off. Unless there is such a thing as a pitch during a football game??? Ugh, I should know better than to use sports metaphors??? I am sports illiterate after all.

So, no. I don’t think I’m a great designer, or even above-average for that matter. I think HGTV needs to hire me because I have what I believe to be a really cool idea for a TV show. I even googled “how to submit a show idea to HGTV”, and I found a result! Yeah, a result that sucked. They can’t accept show ideas from the average joe schmo because of legal reasons. According to their site, they will only accept proposals “from television production companies with national or major market production credentials.” If you could see how hard my eyes are rolling right now, you’d certainly be impressed.

Since last time I checked I was not a member of one of those groups, I’m going to share this idea with the three of you! (If you are new here, you’ll see self-deprecating humor is BIG.)

I want a show to chronicle the building of a house. Here’s the twist: the house will be made entirely out of materials being given away for free off of Craigslist. Seriously! How cool would that be? I see all kinds of stuff being given away! Just a random perusing of Craigslist in our area revealed the following:

  • Four 4’ x 8’ Pegboards – wouldn’t that be great in a garage?
  • Lots of Rolls of Carpet, Great For Burning Man – OK, I can’t speak for the quality of the carpet, but hey, FREE CARPET! (Not to take from the burners. Peace, dude.)
  • 5 Gallon Buckets with Handles – Needed for the paint we’ll find for free!
  • Door – Duh.
  • Free Scrap Metal
  • Free Hot Tub!
  • 9’ Wood Horizontal Blinds
  • Bathroom Sink
  • Ceiling Fan
  • Mirrored Closet Doors
  • Fill dirt
  • Windows!

I know I went a little crazy with the list there, but that was all on the FIRST results page! Get the idea? What a great way to be green (reduce, reuse, recycle!), frugal (can’t get better than FREE), and make me a star all in one awesome idea?

So, anyone reading this who is a member of a national or major market production credentials (*cough* Libby *cough*) and who thinks this could lead somewhere, holla!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Scratching the Literary 7 Year Itch

Posted by She Said

For seven years I have been a stay-at-home mom. SEVEN years.

Seven years of not earning a paycheck. (Boo!)

Seven years of not having to clock in anywhere. (Yay!)

It truly has been the best of times. It’s also been the worst of times. I haven’t missed the stress of a “traditional” job, but staying at home hasn’t been all Oprah and bonbons. My journey of meeting other like-minded parents has been akin to water-boarding, but now that the kids are in school, that hasn’t been such torturous issue.

But my journey is taking a radical turn next week. Our youngest is going into first grade, which means both kids will be at school ALL DAY. I am fortunate enough to have a husband who deeply values having me stay home to take care of all the day-to-day stuff, stuff that could oftentimes bore me to tears. Laundry, grocery shopping, cleaning the kitchen over-and-over-and-over again – all things that done throughout the day frees up time when he is home for us to do family stuff. You know, like play Mindcraft. Now, I’m not saying I’m the best at all of those domestic shenanigans. My house isn’t immaculate 24/7. I generally wait until we have no clean clothes before tackling the mountain of dirty clothes. But, whatever, it gets done.

But now! Now I am going to have HOURS each day. BY MYSELF. And oh, dear lawdy, I do not want to have my children think all I do is clean and shop for food. In fact, I’ve been saying that this is the year where I get to reinvent myself! So, before I say what I am going to attempt to do, I must first tell you what I am going to attempt NOT to do.

I do not want to clean all day. Or grocery shop all day. Or do laundry all day.

This next one is something that worries me. I do not want to play solitaire for hours on end, because as pathetic as it sounds, I can whittle away time doing just that. I’m going to show you something. I’m outing myself here, so don’t judge me.


solitaire1(OK, judge me a little.)

So, on to what I WANT to do. I mulled over ways to reinvent myself, and when I decided upon a path, I talked to Greg, and I asked him to tell me if he honestly thought I could do it. His answer stung like Anastasia Steele’s ass getting spanked in Fifty Shades of Grey but wasn’t nearly as fun. He said, “I think you can do it, but I think you’ll struggle with motivation.”


But you know what? That may have been the best motivation of all. To prove him wrong. (Again.)

As part of my motivation technique, I’m throwing it out for all to read! That way, I’d not only have to answer to Greg if I fail, but I’d have to hang my head in shame to you all as well.

I want to write. I’m going to attempt (there is no try, only do) throw my hat into the scary, overpopulated world of freelance writing! And if when I get something published, I am going to have a bigger smile than Christian Grey gets from doing all that spanking.

And that, my friends, you can get in writing.

(Wish me luck!)

Monday, August 6, 2012

Wine In a Box? The Married Geeks are Thinking Bigger!

Posted by She Said

When Greg and I started dating, I was thrown into his world of beer making. I’d help bottle and cap his latest home brew. I’m not much of a beer drinker**, but we had a great time doing this together. My favorite was the Jolly Rancher beer made from a Corona Clone, created by using a Jolly Rancher as the final priming sugar. We’d drop a particular flavor into the bottle right before capping it. And they were scrumptious! My favorite was the watermelon. Or maybe the cherry. OH! Green apple! Yum!

For our wedding favors, we even handed out our private label home brew:


And then years of marriage flew by, and out went the beer making, and in came the box wine. We’ve adjusted wine fridges to accommodate these glorious things! We’ve figured out how to best camp with the box! (Remove box, insert plastic bag directly into ice in cooler!) Hell, we’ve even adjusted the shelves in our main refrigerator to work with the average height of the boxes. Folks, we are educated in all things box.

We know people that will snub their noses at the box and swear they are worth nothing more than to be used as props for the next Deliverance movie. To them, I say, I think she looks good in a canoe!


But I digress. Something in Greg must have been missing the creativity that comes in the form of booze production. So, I came home to this:


Yes, my friends, that is a five gallon bucket of “Coastal White” wine in the making. Because who needs a box when you can have a BUCKET?! Now, are we just going to tap the sucker or fill boxes with it? Decisions, decisions.

** Except when I am.

Friday, August 3, 2012

An Open Letter to Chick-Fil-A

Posted by She Said
It is with heartfelt enthusiasm that I write to you today. You see, I need to get a few things off of my chest, and how better than with the written word to completely express the way you have made me feel over the last week?

When the news hit of your open financial support of organizations that oppose gay marriage, I felt anger, gut-wrenching anger. And it’s not like I even inadvertently supported you in your lofty goal of inequality because we don’t even have a Chick-Fil-A around here! No pennies of mine went to such a blatantly intolerant and hateful goal! Nonetheless, the anger I felt was palpable. Why be so cruel as to spend millions on stopping love? And don’t quote any biblical source for your reasoning, because I think that is a lot of blather anyway. Frankly, your “divine” book serves as nothing more than a scapegoat for your hate and intolerance, and that’s all I’m going to say about that.

People on both sides of the equality debate were up on arms about your announcement! When Thomas Menino, the mayor of Boston, urged you to stay out of his city, honestly I was thrilled at first! Hooray for a loud, public voice standing up to your message of hate and intolerance by denying you access to the city! But then I realized that was not the answer. I used to work in public access television and had to educate everyone, even those with messages of hate, on how to create television shows. I did it out of a reverence for free speech. So, where I appreciate the sentiment of Menino’s letter, I do not approve of denying your rights. So see, I am truly the bigger person here because I will stand up for your right to try and deny others theirs. I know you don’t see it like this, but come on, let’s call a spade a spade. You can open up a franchise in my city even, but I vow to you today that I will never support your goal of inequality. I will never drop a dime on your fast food. I will never will take my children to your establishment, and I will openly and honestly explain to them why.

Lastly, when the blogosphere and Facebook exploded with those who oppose you and support you, your message had another unforeseen affect on me. I am originally from Texas, so you can probably correctly guess that I have some kin that proudly ate up your intolerance sold in the form of a chicken sandwich on your Chick-Fil-A appreciation day. Oh, they boasted about it on Facebook! All that did was show me what I suspected already, that they support you in your mission to prevent people from being equal. So, thanks for that. You outed the intolerance in my family. I had to go and hide some of my own family on Facebook so that the spikes in my blood pressure wouldn’t put me in the hospital! You may think I am joking, but I am not. I desperately want my family to embrace equality, to fight for it even! But instead your “appreciation day” put the proverbial nail in the coffin of my dream of a family fighting for justice.

Some say this whole thing is blown out of proportion and is stupid at its best. So, why am I writing this letter? Years from now I want it to be publically known, to my children especially, that I was on the right side of history on this. I don’t ever want them to look back and think I didn’t do anything, didn’t say anything. They will have seen their mother stand up for equality for all. I will continue to do so by exercising my right to not spend my money in your establishment and through my vote.