Humanity is not ready.

With the closing of G+ I like so many of my fellow G+’ers have wandered into the wasteland of the internet to find a new home. I’ve tried on a quite a few different sites and platforms. The closest online home I’ve found has remained one of my firsts, blogging. So here I remain at WordPress. However, I have kept a foothold in Twitter. Mostly to promote my blogs, though I have no idea if it is effective or not. But over this last weekend, I jumped into the black hole that Twitter becomes from time to time.

I do not like Twitter. And it’s not the platform I dislike. It’s the people. I don’t like the people. And I laugh at this simple truth that I know most are afraid to admit much less say out loud or commit to writing. I don’t like most people. It’s very freeing to admit this to myself. And it is why I am saying humanity is not ready.

Ready for what exactly? Twitter gave me a glimpse into what it would be like if we all were mind readers. It would be bloodshed. The simple fact that most people do not like most people and having to hear their thoughts in their head will create aggression that only silencing those thoughts will calm. And that is exactly what I have been seeing on Twitter, aggression based in natural human dislike of differences. Being different taps a primal fear of rejection, taps an aggression to form tribes, taps into a very basic need to be accepted. And internet services like Twitter that expose users to mass diverse opinion will always create tension and aggression until the day humanity is ready to accept differences. We are not there yet. I’m not sure humanity will ever be there.

And as dire as this prediction is, science fiction and fantasy authors have chewed on this topic for a long time. They recognized the need to protect and isolate private thoughts. Not all thoughts need to be accessed by a collective. Thought needs a bit more refinement, a bit more careful consideration before it is formed enough to be exposed.

We all want to express and be heard but more than that we all want to be excepted for who we are no matter our thoughts. This is a difficult request to demand from strangers. But that is what we internet users are asking strangers to do when we use platforms that encourage off the cuff, knee jerk reactions to any sundry topic that crosses in front of our eyes. And we wonder why some places are cesspools? This is why.

Humanity is not ready to use the tools we’ve built. Not yet. We are slowly learning the consequences of not being careful with our thoughts. It doesn’t take much for someone to call for doxxing and have people pick up the call and carry it out. Mob justice is nothing new but what is new is how quick it comes and how easy it is to stir it up. It doesn’t take much for someone to call for murder and someone else, someone who they have never met to agree and then carry it out. Throughout humanity’s history mob justice has existed. It has torn apart countries, communities, families all for was is nothing more than differences.

Humanity is still an infant. I think we are reaching the terrible two’s where demanding our way and having tantrums are commonplace. It is also where we learn to identify ourselves, learn patience and form better questions. It’s also where we learn how to use the potty if we hadn’t done so before. And to take pride that we are no longer shitting in our pants. But humanity is a two-year-old, still filling up our pants and screaming for a lolly instead of asking for it.

The way I see it, we have two choices. We can shut up and not express our differences and keep it to ourselves and form society into some homogeneous form or we can learn to accept and embrace our differences. I’m not a person who takes the easy way out of anything. And I know most people are like water, seeking the level by the easiest way. Closing our minds might end up with a kind of Utopia but it will be static. Things that are static are dying. That path lies extinction. So, I’m going the hard route, we have to embrace our differences…this means we accept we are different and that’s okay. It means, sometimes there needs to be harsh boundaries that are respected. Sometimes it means, knowing when to speak and when it’s unwise to do so. It means, knowing every individual no matter their differences still deserve love and acceptance. It means, we must act in love when we interact with each other. We must feel this truth to the core of our being.

And this is why I say humanity is not ready. Humanity doesn’t love, not yet. Humanity is learning how to love, how to see beyond self-interest. It’s a simple truth, each one of us humanity. Each one of us is part of one whole. Our differences do not erase how much the same we are. It’s the way we deal with our differences that define us.

It’s the way we deal with our differences that define us.

So walk in love. Be careful with your thoughts. Weight and measure them. Remember there is far more the same than different for each and every one of us.

Just my 2 cents:

The MAGA hat boy did nothing wrong and was the most respectable person involved.

I’ve hunted the longer videos, read various statements, been all up and down twitter feeds. The insanity is real, folks. A red hat it all it takes now to condemn a man. Wait, that was a teenager. And they doxxed him. Targeted the wrong kid. Death threats pouring out everywhere on a number of families.

Until yesterday, I had respect for some news companies. Today, I have none. I see what Trump is saying now about fake news. This needs to be taken to court. These companies need to be held accountable for promoting lies and promoting hate and violence.

But there is one thing that still bothers me. And it is how many people became enraged seeing a kid smile in front of a man with a drum. It had nothing to do with the picture but with the narrative being told surrounding it. It never had anything to do with the facts. This is a story of us vs. them, of who’s in my tribe, who’s gonna defend me, defend us.

I can pull plenty of media moments far more disgusting that never had the reach or pull of the outrage machine. I think I know why. In all the others, the truth was obvious. In this, the truth was obscured so those believing had to believe on the strength of those reporting it. And in doing so, they bypassed rational thinking and allowed hate and outrage to grow.

We tend to defend our friends with a ferociousness of a momma bear. We also tend to not question them or fact check them. They are in our inner circle of trust so why would we double check? To do so would mean we don’t trust, right? No. We need to check every time and check our hearts too. Not because we don’t trust you, but because we can stay calm when you are upset.

The saddest part to all of this for me is seeing where all these peoples hearts are at. Some had their hearts in the right place. And some relished the attack. And others fell into line as mob justice formed. Others questioned. A few waited and watched. It’s those who waited and watched, thank you. Thank you for resisting the pull of being enraged. Thank you for your dedication to the truth.

As the media companies play on our emotions, we must stop the rush to judgment. We must withhold judgment until a time where we stay calm and review all the facts available. Our emotions are powerful motivators, powerful engines of change. Every one of us has the choice to master our emotions or allow others to use them against us. Yesterday, many had their emotions used against them. And I find that outrageous.

Found Wisdom

Found this story in an unusual place and it was credited to Facebook. It is too good to keep to myself. With current events and the news cycle reacting instead of investigating and then reporting, we need to be mindful of that which divides us as members of the human race. We need to calm our minds and thoughts before acting. Often, reacting is the wrong action to take. Stop. Breathe. Wait.

~ Are you a witch? ~

One of my friends told me about a powerful lesson in her daughter’s high school class this winter. They’re learning about the Salem Witch Trials, and their teacher told them they were going to play a game.

“I’m going to come around and whisper to each of you whether you’re a witch or a normal person. Your goal is to build the largest group possible that does NOT have a witch in it. At the end, any group found to include a witch gets a failing grade.”

The teens dove into grilling each other. One fairly large group formed, but most of the students broke into small, exclusive groups, turning away anyone they thought gave off even a hint of guilt.

“Okay,” the teacher said. “You’ve got your groups. Time to find out which ones fail. All witches, please raise your hands.”

No one raised a hand.

The kids were confused and told him he’d messed up the game.

“Did I? Was anyone in Salem an actual witch? Or did everyone just believe what they’d been told?”

And that is how you teach kids how easy it is to divide a community.

Keep being welcoming, beautiful people. Shunning, scapegoating and dividing destroy far more than they protect. We’re all in this together.

The Case against Kavanaugh Is Collapsing

It’s moments like this that makes me think this country has fallen into mass hysteria. I’ve read about women in tears, having panic attacks, being triggered all because of a collective sense of making someone pay for the sins of others, that’s called scapegoating folks, is failing.

It bothers me so many people are willing to ram home that belief without a shred of proof of a crime; charged and found guilty by the court of public opinion. The mob is mindless folks. The mob is the public. And it is the mob that operates on the power of emotions and it this case, fear, guilt and anger, a trifecta of dangerous negative emotions that will lead all over the cliff straight in social chaos to land squarely in a world devoid of any sense of humanity and decency.

I don’t know if he ever raped anyone. I do know, as of right now there is no evidence of such an act so I give him the benefit of the doubt until such a time that more evidence is presented to sway my personal opinion in a direction off of neutral. It is a principal I believe has value even now, to withhold judgment in the presence of strong emotion and evaluate according to the principals of reasoning under the demand for strong evidence.

Allowing ourselves to be swayed by strong emotions leaves all of us vulnerable to manipulation and it is this in the age of social media that each one of us needs to guard against.

“Your soul takes on the color of your thoughts.”
-Marcus Aurelius

So many have grabbed anger and coloured their minds with it. They have taken sadness and made it a part of themselves, and to what purpose? To enjoy misery? to enact a form of social solitary? Why this instead of that? What has made sadness and anger and misery more important than celebrating joy, happiness, and a life well lived?

Every moment of your life is lived by choice. Even in times such as these.

The Case against Kavanaugh Is Collapsing

Canapes are the most impressive invention in history.

Canapes, that wonderfully delicious finger food that borrows artistic sculptural elements, that scrumptious foundation of bread layer by layer of contrasting textures and tastes that add up into handheld yum bites. Canapes are the pentacle of the bread culture, a completion of gastronomic evolution and a wonderment of humankinds love and fascination with the complex.

I have a braingasm when I think of canapes. Unashamedly so. These things are sexy! The best are beautifully eye candies with the contrast of colours and shapes; a sliver of ruby tomato resting on a soft cloud of milky white cream cheese resting on rye bread with a bare dollop of herbed olive oil. It’s a delight, contrasting flavours of savoury, soothing, strong and silky paired with those textures, oh my, it’s it’s umami.

So, there is that aspect, a very carnal, very sensual, inhaling of the senses and there is another, the amount of mindsteps its taken to reach this point in its evolution. The culinary bread history, countless tens of thousands of years old, untold generation of ancestors its taken to give bread available at the current level. I look back in wonderment to how it’s got to us.

Some brave soul out there figured out some grass seeds were edible. Someone else saved it to replant. And later, step by step humankind figured out how to pound into dust, bake it with fire ( which alone is just as impressive..somebody had to figure out fire, cooking methods, all the various baking styles..each culture develops its own unique method, philosophy around the staff of life, the grains, one of the first major crops that turned humanity from a hunter-gather culture to an agricultural one. And that’s just to get bread, the foundation piece that upon all the other elements rest on. The bread itself is almost a metaphor for the roots of human society and our creative dependence of each other. It is upon bread and the work of our past and present that unites in this concrete symbol that is so human.

Each of the sequential layers of ingredients has their own independent story of discovery, use, development and cultural significance. You can interpret a myriad of stories just based on what’s in the layers like assembling a bouquet of flowers using the Victorian-based Language of Flowers. And if you take those little interpretations and pair it with the way eating makes you feel; you can be eating love inside and out just depending on all the associations of each flavour. You could eat a story while reading that story.

Wait, wait but that’s not all. Canapes are sensually voyeuristic. They are meant to be consumed in front of others. It is a most social of foods from the most utilitarian to the delicate fragility of crisp layers. Large gatherings of people come together to devour with gastronomic pleasure these morsels. And they celebrate this!

No, Superbowl isn’t about football. It’s about the food during football. Win or lose, good canapes makes the difference between a good night and the dark pit of darkness stalking every fan of the losing team that suffered the most for their team rallying on without good beer, good seats and good canapes. Canapes takes and makes the underdog a winner.

In the United States, canapes came into their own during the Probation and Great Depression. From the hands of labour and the fields, the bits of resourceful ingenuity and kitchen wizardry found new life alongside cocktails and speakeasies. Belly treats to soak up the liqueur and hide away the imbibers from the morality police and of course the law. This rebelliousness wrapped its self around the nature of is colourful form, that pleasurable contrast of colours, eye candy that looking makes things just a bit better.

The Great Depression contributed an eternal nature, of recycling bits and pieces and maximized flavour. Stale bread fried, toasted and topped, cut into bite sizes just lifts down beaten heart. It is a moment where the love of creation, of taking the time, all the time every taken to create that very moment, and it fits in the mouth and nourishes not just the body but the soul that connects with all of humanity.

Just having canapes rejoined with the history humanity has with liqueur and alcohol, the first two gifts to humanity brought back in a divine ritual of joy! its amazing!

In the modern age, you have the complexity of systems that it takes to create that canape, from the farmer, to packing, to the store and from the chef to the lips of humanity. That’s a whole ton of life’s supporting each other in a very basic, unassuming way, inner-woven to almost invisibility, if you are sitting on the top eating canapes and sipping champagne.

They are amazing. They often are devoured without an appreciation of the complexity and history of it, relying on their value in tantalising taste buds to retain its place in our food devotions.

Inside my treasure chest

When I first read this assignment (write about inanimate meanings, ie pull from your treasure chest)  I went into a tailspin. I took this on such a personal level I searched my history to find something to pin this story on. I found nothing. Asking my husband, my friends and family-we all came up drawing blanks. I had nothing, no treasures from my past, nothing that I had truly held onto. It’s depressing to feel treasureless.

How could I write this without having experienced this first? How could I convince the reader to share in the creation of an experience that leads them to hold fondly onto the picture I paint with these words; if I had not experienced the depth of these emotions first? I concluded I was lacking emotional depth and screwed as a writer.

I’m not a mentally normal person. It’s no excuse for hiding, dodging and not doing the work. Yesterday, I came back to myself, back to this mind frame that can do the work. This morning I woke up inspired. All I had to do was change the parameters of what makes a treasure.

Physical objects as treasure I do not have. I never cherished things that I knew could disappear at my parent’s whim. I learned early on to not hold onto the comfort of a blanket and to transfer it to whatever object was available. I had learned detachment was more valuable than attachment. Facing that one fact hurts.

But I tell stories. Some of these I’ve recounted over the years to the point I have a favorite one.

I spent a great deal of time in the yard as a child. I watched life change in her slow ways over those years. Have you ever noticed the thickening of the tree trunks in the spring? Ever notice where the wild thistle comes from? Have you watched the slow war of the ants? The environment was my main source of mental stimulation.

At six I enjoyed running across the yard to pick buttercups, dandelions, oxalis, clover, wild mint, sweet peas, and violets. For most of them, my pickings encouraged them to grow and spread out even more. Except for the buttercups. By the time I was seven, there was only a single patch in the yard. It was a health bushy patch surviving the onslaught of the lawnmower bravely.

Then, came me and my greedy hands. In a single spring, I decimated their future. I proudly gave my mother the biggest and best buttercups I had ever seen. The flowers were bigger than my thumbprint, they were giant buttercups. Their yellow pollen would cover our chins as we asked silly questions about our love, or not, of butter. It was such a happy spring and summer, the year of the giant buttercups.

The following spring I eagerly searched for the buttercups. Not a single buttercup plant existed in the yard. None existed in the neighborhood. There were no buttercups to be seen. I had picked them all, to death!

In my innocence, my desire to shower my mother with affection led to the destruction of our favorite flower. It’s a lesson that I’ve carried with me and never forgotten.

Turns out buttercups are annual plants and they need their flowers to form seeds. It took ten years for wild buttercups to spread and reseed the yard. Such little actions often have deep and long-lasting consequences. This is my earliest treasure-awareness.

I refuse to celebrate Woman’s Day

It’s everywhere on social media – Happy International Woman’s Day. I won’t click a like or a plus or share any of those postings. The whole movement of Women Power I want to divorce myself from. It has gone way too far. It is no longer about equality but superiority. I do not want anything to do with that.

There was a dream of equality, where men and women could pursue their desires without ridicule, without social stigma. Now it is acceptable to shame men for being male. Now it is acceptable to shame women for being female. Now it is acceptable to shame. I find that unacceptable without equivocation.

I have experienced sexism in the workplace. In fact, I experienced more of it in dealing with women! I’ve worked in male-dominated industries without dealing with untold amounts of sexual harassment from men. But sexism, I got a lot of that from women.

Now, I’m not a butch, not a lez. I am undeniably female. Long hair, big big tits and wide hips-I cannot hide my gender even if I wanted too. I am not fragile. I am built for endurance and hard work. Ten hour days of physical labor would leave me just as tired as the men but I still had hours ahead of me of more work to do. The whole house chore inequality between sexes is a real thing. But frankly, that is more a relationship issue than a social one. The thing is, if I could not have kept up, I would have been washed out and dismissed. And that would have been fair.

Not all women are cut out to do the work I was doing. Hell, not all men are cut out for it either. But the thing I’ve noticed, in tough working environments, it’s about getting the job done and never about what’s between your legs. And strangely, in working environments where most anyone can do the work, sexism pops up it’s ugly little head. Where before women were screaming about sexual harassment in the office, it’s now going to be men screaming. And soon after, women will be silenced about the sexism of their female bosses. All because women power won.

That was never my fight. I wanted equality. I wanted the acceptability to pursue the work, the life and the loves that I desired. I had that for a little while. The women like me, that come after me, will have to be tougher than me. They are going to have to fight harder for the equality denied them and everyone.

I march to my own drummer. So be it.

Equality for All.