Five Things You Don’t Know About Me

Brittney tagged me and so I’m going to try to come up with five things I haven’t already confessed to you here.

1. I have an irrational fear of getting stickers in my mouth, especially price tags. I almost can’t type that, it bothers me so much.

2. When I lived with the graduate school roommate who was not Dr. J., I often wanted to beat the shit out of her. She’d get this look on her face and I’d just feel this kind of primal rage and desire to knock her down until she stayed down. It scared the shit out of me, that feeling, but shoot, it was there, the desire to just smash her face in.

3. When I was in second grade, all the kids on the playground would have these fake marriages and my friend Krista was married to Eric, who sat in front of me. On the day of their divorce, he asked me to marry him and I told him no, because he’d just be with me to ease his heartache and not because he really liked me. I often think that my whole life would be dramatically different if I’d told him yes.

4. I don’t think “Betsy” is my real name.

5. I have a birthmark on my cooter.

Or maybe it’s a mole or a large freckle.  Can anyone explain in simple terms the differences between a freckle, a mole, and a brown birthmark?

Three Ways Young Men Are Getting Screwed Over

1.  The “surge.”  So, we send in more troops to do what?  Hold off the civil war we should have seen coming another couple of years until the politicians can best utilize all the footage of returning soldiers?  Can anyone explain to me what we’re now supposed to be attempting to do in Iraq?  And is it worth putting our folks in harm’s way?

2.  Unpaid college athletes.  King Kauffman says it better than me.  If there’s money to pay coaches millions of dollars, there’s money to pay the athletes on whose back everyone else is making money.  Talk about immoral. 

3.  You deal drugs, you go to jail.  You use drugs, you go to jail or to rehab or you lose your job.  They deal drugs, they continue to be the attending physician to Congress.  They use drugs, they get to be Supreme Court Chief Justice.  Again, talk about immoral.

The Butcher–Good for What Ails Ya!

(Before I get started, can I just say that I think it’s hilarious when the dog farts so loud that it startles her and she jumps up and has to walk over to me, like there’s something I can do about it?  Oh, yes, Mrs. Wigglebottom, I’ll just wave my hands three times and magically fix your stinky loud ass!  Ha, now she’s totally giving me a dirty look.  Mrs. Wigglebottom is kind of saucy this morning.)

1.  The Butcher should totally be a career counselor.  He’s just got a wise, thoughtful way about him and you can sit in the brown chair (like the redheaded kid) and complain and get wise counsel from the Butcher or you can lay on the end of his bed and ask for advice and even though he went to bed about four hours before, he will listen to you and then crack a joke and then say incredibly reasonable things you’ve not thought of.

2.  My Aunt B. sent me a small desk fountain that looks just like a big fountain in our neighborhood.  I’m so hoping I can talk the Butcher into helping me take a photograph of the small fountain next to the big fountain.  How hilarious would that be?

3.  Also, I’m going to try to remember to ask him, for NM’s father-in-law, if there are any good fish restaurants in town.

Pleasure Takes Practice

I’m sometimes sorry I don’t have a way to express this without getting all “woo-woo” on the atheists, but I guess, all I can do is speak from my own experience and hope it rings true with you, or that you can at least see what I’m getting at close enough to extrapolate something useful from it.

Because I do believe that pleasure is revolutionary, that acting on our desire for pleasure and believing that we deserve it, has the potential to transform our lives, for the better. And I know that every time we talk about this, folks raise the objection that, while they think pleasure is a good idea, they don’t want to get too caught up in it, that other things might be neglected.

Which is why I think that there needs to be some thing after pleasure, something like “pleasure in accord with the will of the universe,” but I realize that such a sentiment is funny to atheists and useless to those of us who believe that the universe is governed by judgmental capriciousness. So, maybe I mean something like “pleasure that serves us, and others, well” or “pleasure that does not add to the suffering of one’s self or others.”

Do you see what I’m getting at? Someone can take a month and in it sleep with twenty different people and, if it makes her feel alive and vibrant and decadent and joyful and hedonistic and well-pleased and happy, etc., then there’s no problem. But if someone takes a month and sleeps with twenty different people and feels like shit about herself because of it, even if she enjoys the sex itself and finds in it some measure of pleasure, that does her little good.

It’s not the impulse to feel good, even for a short time, that’s the problem, though. It’s the shame and other baggage that doesn’t have to be inherent that we need to address.

I’m not sure how to do that.

As I was telling the Professor at dinner tonight, a lot of us seem to agree that there’s something inherently wrong with the structure(s) by which we relate to each other. And yet, when we talk about revolution, we only, as far as I can tell, talk about how we’ll address the problems that are obvious in the current structure. We rarely talk about what’s working and why.

So, when we go to implement new systems, they aren’t any less inherently fucked-up than the old structures, because we’ve carried with us from the old way a belief that we’ve destroyed the injustice of the old structure without the realization that, without something new to guide us, we’ll set up new structures to resemble the old structure, because that’s what we know.

Which is why I think it’s okay that I don’t know how pleasure will save us. I don’t want to impose any of this way, the way that hurts so many of us, on the future. I just want to be open to the new shapes a just relationship to pleasure might bring.

I’m thinking of giving up the term “the Patriarchy,” because though I use it as a jokey way to mean all those structures, and though I believe that things between men and women are FUCKED UP, with a capital FUH, I think it helps gloss over the shitty ways men are to each other (not that we always have to talk about men) and it focuses on just one part of how the system works, without having to address how the whole thing makes life unnecessarily hard–dare I say it?–unnecessarily unpleasant for a whole lot of people, and not just because of their gender.

This time of year, when it doesn’t get any sun, the boob freckle is faint, like a ghost of pleasures past.


I may never get to the point where I easily believe that I deserve pleasure. I’m kind of fucked up. But I’d like to at least commemorate the random spot on my breast that makes me smile; it seems so frivolous. I don’t believe it exists for any other reason but to delight me and bring me pleasure.


Ha, this is kind of a weird meandering post, but I like it, so what the fuck, huh?