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Thursday, June 26, 2008

The Marching Song of the Covert Battalions by Billy Bragg

Here we are, seeking out the reds
Trying to keep the communists in order
Just remember when you're sleeping in your beds
They're only two days drive from the Texas border.
How can a country large as ours
Be scared of such a threat?
Well if they won't work for us
They're against us you can bet!
They may be sovereign countries
But you folks at home forget
That they all want what we've got
But they don't know it yet!
We're making the world safe for capitalism!
Here we come with our candy and our guns
And our corporate muscle marches in behind us
For freedom's just another world for nothing left to sell
And if you want narcotics we can get you those as well...
We help the multi-nationals
When they cry out protect us
The locals scream and shout a bit
But we don't let that affect us
We're here to lend a helping hand
In case they don't elect us
How dare they buy our products
Yet still they dont respect us!
We're making the world safe for capitalism!
If you thought the army
Was here protecting people like yourself
I've some news for you
We're here to defend wealth!
Away with nuns and bishops
The good lord will help those that help themselves
I've some news for you
We're here to defend wealth!
We're making the world safe for capitalism!

Friday, June 6, 2008

Ending Abuse

In my younger days I was quite insane. I knew it then, I really know it now. Part of becoming that insane was that I'd been programmed to living in abuse. And part of that programming is not even knowing what abuse is. Consequently, I gave and took abuse as a course of life. It was the norm; I knew nothing else, had no coping skills, no awareness of living differently. And for some 36 years, I got thru life that way. It was all about giving shit and taking shit. Drama followed drama, I was angry and hate-filled, lonely and very sad. People were always in my life, but few were mentally healthy. Then a succession of deaths left me at a rock-bottom place, a place of singular pain. And I said to myself, "No more." The No More attitude began invading all parts of my life. Bit by bit, I started demanding respect and not tolerating the way other people treated me. It became important to be treated the way I wanted to be treated, and in turn, I began to treat others better. This set up an expectation of what I'd accept from people, and what I wouldn't accept. By setting limits, and communicating them, I was treated better. If I wasn't treated well, I left. The powers of dissociation I'd used to block out pain I turned into taking a step back and looking at what was happening, objectively. I stopped hanging on to insane situations and people. It was a process, and still is.

I tend to love very deeply, and believe that my heart is right. It isn't, often. Love really is blind. And if I want to love someone, I will ignore all the flags and warning signs and boldly go forward. I'm still working on that. Sex is not love. Self-sacrifice can leave you with nothing. Supporting another person can become an addiction. You cannot change anyone else, and rarely can you change how they treat you. The instinct to love someone can be very wrong. Laughing off or "understanding" someone's abusive ways won't change the paradigm. In fact, it enables it to go on. Even encourages it.

And I'm quite comfortable alone. Sometimes too comfortable. Sometimes too cautious with people, sometimes not cautious enough. I'm willing to trust someone to a point now, but I'm more watchful than ever. And if someone's loud and invasive, I watch more carefully. If someone is critical of others, chances are I'll be on the list soon. If someone is passive aggressive, talks behind others' backs, constantly rants and bitches about others, chances are they do the same about me to others. Their drama does not make it my drama. I don't hunt for character flaws, but I recognize them. And if I begin to become someone's victim, I get out. Because once they have a taste of your blood, they'll be back for more. It also reignites parts of me that I've spent years dousing out. It starts the old "proving myself/insecurity/submission/people pleasing" crap. Life is short and there really are a lot of good people in the world. I don't need to keep abusive people in my life. There's nothing to prove, nothing that matters more than my peace of mind.

Neither do I give people up easily. And the door can be reopened if that formerly abusive person wakes up and stops the cycle in their life. But for me, for my portion of sanity and self-preservation, the craziness had to go. And life has been much better. I do recommend it.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

How Lovely to Be a Woman

Here I sit, for the 3rd morning in a row, having had about 2 hours' sleep, staring at the humid breezeless dawn.

Really, perimenopause wouldn't be complete if you could escape from its tortures by getting a few hours of unconsciousness. No, one should be continually aware of all the special effects, to lose even a few moments of this momentous life event would be a waste! Of course, some of my friends have things I wish I got- like cold chills. Oh, for a good shiver to relieve the constant furnace I am. On the upside, I never had to turn the heat up beyond 55 all winter because I was bodily contributing to Global Warming.

Then there are the swelling body parts and vigilantly avoiding any food that may make it impossible to bend your fingers. Or the arbitrary periods that may or may not show up after the PMS from Hell. What kinda period will it be this time? A Peckinpah festival or barely worth a tampon's cost? Will it last 10 days or 2? Will I get it again in two weeks or not for another 3 months? Surprise me! After 36 years, there's new tricks in this pony afterall! Hot damn! Did I mention arhythmia? That's a treat all to itself. Nothing like having your heart flop around in your chest as you desperately try to get some-any-sleep-please-gods-just a few hours of sleep! And just as you think your heart will go thru your throat or stomach, it stops, waiting for you to relax and catch you unaware. After the exhaustion peaks and you drop on your bed, expecting Morpheus to claim you at last, the lower back pain kicks in so there's no chance you'd sleep in any position the human body is capable of, anyway.

So you get up, drag your sweating, sagging miserable ass to your desk and wait for sunrise, again. Ah, yes. No wonder the Hasids thank their god everyday that they weren't born a woman. And no wonder that program "Snapped" is almost always about a menopausal woman.