For 14-year-old me.

When Hillary Clinton announced her run for President over a year and as half ago I was quick and eager to snatch up this bumper sticker & proudly place it on my car. Now there was a time I favored Bernie, and actually cacused for him, but ultimately here we are with Hillary on the ballot and I am glad I never removed this sticker. 

I’ve had my ups and downs with Hillary through out this long, long, election but I never doubted she was qualified and capable of being a good leader. My trust in her may not be 100% but it is leaps and bounds ahead of the other options. Hillary gives me hope for our future and where  we can go and build upon the progress we have made. She inspires me to be better and believe we are better. 

So I’m with her. 

You Want a Revolution? I Want a Revelation.

The joke has already been made many times, and even by Lin-Manuel Miranda himself when he hosted Saturday Night Live on October 9th;

And while it’s still funny and more applicable with every passing day it also got me thinking about how much these two men can be compared or paralleled. Even the lyrics proceeding the above scene, “Have you ever seen somebody ruin their own life? / His poor wife.” seem uncannily accurate.

Trump may go on after this election to still be a “successful business man”, but he has tarnished his reputation immensely with this run of his candidacy. He has exposed too much of the true person he is to ever be honestly respected again. His poor wife indeed. Not just Melania either, all three of his wives have had to relive their relationship and the more often than not disturbing history they have with him.

But even beyond that, how much do these two men have in common? Basing this on what we know about Hamilton from the musical and what we know of Trump from this election (yes I know I could and really should do more research but I didn’t have it in me to do that to myself) it’s easy to see some clear similarities and stark contrasts as well.

Hamilton was an immigrant who came from truly humble beginings. Trump is the son of an immigrant who would love to claim he came from humble beginings, but realistically started his career with a 1 million dollar loan from his father. Hamilton worked hard, non-stop if you will, to make a name for himself and to achieve greatness. Trump worked hard in his own ways, I unfortunately don’t think you can argue he didn’t at least do that to build what is his name and his brand today.

Hamilton had a reputation. Trump has a reputation. Hamilton could be at times seen as arrogant, pushy, manipulative. Trump is seen as arrogant as well, but also as racist, homophobic, sexist, ableist,  underhanded, cheating, whiny piss-baby and so on and so forth.

Hamilton as a founding father helped to write The Constitution and Declaration of Independence. Trump as a current candidate for President was asked, along with his opposing candidate Hilary Clinton, in the most recent debate by moderator Chris Wallace how those important documents should be upheld and interpreted. They were asked if The Constitution should be upheld as the founding fathers meant it as they wrote it or does the document need to bend and lend itself to the current times? Donald responded that we need to honor those words as our forefathers saw them to be meant back then. Which I could not disagree with more.

When asked about the diversity of his show and the people of color cast to play historically white people Lin-Manuel says that Hamilton is about the United States as it was then being represented and portrayed by the United States today. And I think that is an excellent answer to Wallace’s question as well. The Constitution and Declaration of Independence are at the foundation of our country. They were created to honor and to protect our citizens, both then and now. But the world our founding fathers lived in and desired to keep safe and sound is not even remotely reflective of the world we are living in today and the one our future president has to think about keeping safe and sound. Those words and ideals have got to lend themselves to fit our times, our people, and our current predicaments. Which they are totally capable of doing, they are good bases, good foundations, to build upon.

Hamilton never saw a candidacy due to his own pride and determination to prove himself to the people who disproved and disagreed with him. Trump has managed a candidacy but likely won’t see a presidency  due to his pride, ego, & arrogance. Both have managed to take themselves down and out of the race by their need to constantly be right about themselves and their nature.

However I like to think that had Hamilton ever gotten the opportunity to run for president and lost, he would have conceded with dignity and respect for the American people and their choice. We learned Trump may not be capable of in that same debate mentioned before. He refused to answer if he would respect the election outcome should he lose, stating rather that, “I’ll leave you in suspense.” Which is just deplorable coming from any candidate, but particularly from one already crying out about how rigged he believes this election to be. It’s hard to take someone serious (or perhaps harder in this case) when they are already being a sore loser 20 days before being given the opportunity to do so.

Hamilton died at 47 from a gun shot wound inflicted during a duel with then Vice President Aaron Burr. Trump is currently 70 and quickly on his way to a dying political career that most are not even sure how he got in the first place. Trump’s preemptive reaction to this death is a lot like Mr. Burr’s (sir) when Hamilton endorsed Thomas Jefferson over him in the election of 1800. It’s quick, over dramatic, and going to be his legacy. He will survive, but god I hope he pays for it.

So suffice to say that while both Trump and Hamilton are infamous, only one of them is historic.

Thank You Gilmores

For the last month or two I’ve been making my way through a re-watch of Gilmore Girls on Netflix and last night I finished, just in time to wake up today and celebrate the shows 16th birthday.

Now I am classically a person who gets way too emotional and way too invested in fictional characters. However, Gilmore Girls is one of the first shows that brought out what is now just a facet of my existence. I didn’t know about or fully understand what fandom was till I started watching this show and Smallville, these shows are the start of a lot for me. And so it will always, always hold a special place in my heart.

But I don’t think I have watched this series in full, from start to beginning in order, since it was on the air. I frequent the early seasons, one through four, so I’ve seen them many times but I always tend to fall off around five and up. So this going through it all again in chronological order has made me really appreciate the show and these characters.

I started watching this show when I was 14, and so it’s not even a stretch to say that these characters and their stories influenced me. I saw my mom and I in Lorelai and Rory, and my grandparents in Richard and Emily, and my small town in Stars Hallow even if we are not as adorably connected and quirky as them. I looked to these characters for a lot in my teenage years and they taught me so much and helped me understand more about who I was and who I wanted to me.

And even now, over ten years later, I still found myself seeking similar things and finding so much comfort. I can’t even properly word how much I was reminded just how much this show, these characters mean to me. I am just mostly so thankful for all that Amy Sherman-Palladindo has given me with her creation, and so extremely excited to watch the four new episodes that we are getting blessed with.

So thank you to the Gilmores and company.

Titles are the Worst Part

As a person who relies heavily on words and the outlet of writing I have had the hardest time with them lately. Instead I’ve been reading. Like more so this year than I have a in quiet some time, so that’s something at least.

But it’s still endlessly frustrating to feel like there is some sort of road block keeping you from expressing yourself. When writing a note to a friend, composing a tweet, or hell even writing in your own journal feels difficult and inorganic it hits somewhere far below the belt.

I am hoping that it goes away by November because I want to participate in NaNoWriMo this year, dropping out last year sucked and part of me is unsure if I ever recovered from that. I want to return to an activity that normally felt so comfortable and like an old friend, I want to find comfort in the act of sitting down and writing out words and stories and dialogue again like I used to. Not this stiff, insecure place I am at any time I put a pen in my hand or lay my hands on a keyboard.

All Questions. No Answers. (For Now)

Questions I’ve been coming back to a lot lately; “What’s the point?”, “Is it even really worth it?”, and that age old one of “Why?”

I am no closer to the answers to any of them than I was when they first started to make frequent appearances in my nightly attempts to calm down my mind somewhere between six months and a year ago. And that feeling like you don’t know the answer, and have no clue what to research or where to look to find the answer takes a toll on a person.

Long story short, 2016 has felt like the opposite of my year.

Words & Action

The list of safe places is growing smaller and smaller each day. Or maybe the reality is that there was never any actual safe place, it was all a facade we built and imagined because we know we so desperately need that element of hope to make it through our days.

Either way in the last four years alone we’ve discovered that schools, churches, movie theaters, workplaces and now gay clubs are not safe places despite what they stand for. Places for us to grow and receive educations. Places of worship. Places of entertainment. Places where we work to afford living.  Places we go to celebrate and to be accepted.

There are no words to make these things hurt less, to ease the pain so many people are experiencing, to soften the fear that begins to creep in and linger. There are not words, but there is definitely action. We need to take action to change something so that events like these stop happening. I know a lot of people will freeze up, have a quip about “we have a right to defend ourselves!”, roll their eyes, or just  huff at me when I say that. But it’s true. Something needs to change if we expect anything else too.

My goal is not to take away all the guns, but if it was necessary to stop this stuff I’d consider backing that, but to keep them out of the hands of people who intend to murder others with them. Let’s make it incredibly difficult for people who have no reason to be owning a gun to acquire one legally. If you are already a law-abiding gun owner who goes through all the correct steps to obtain and own a gun than you’re still going to get your gun. Yes it might mean more steps, more background checks, more effort, but if you’re as disgusted by these mass shootings and murder as you should be then I don’t see why you won’t willingly take the steps seeing as they could potentially save multiple lives. Laws and regulations and what is available to civilians need to be regulated better. No one needs an assault weapon for personal use.

This might feel like an attack on pro-guns, which maybe it is, maybe I’ve lost my ability to be more objective on this topic. I’m just tired of waking up to hearing about another shooting, hearing about how people are losing family and friends because someone decided to play God and determine who gets to live and who doesn’t. About hearing how bigotry and hate have given someone the idea that killing people is okay.

What happened in Orlando was a hate crime against LGBT people that was carried out by a homophobic radical man with access to guns despite being on a no-fly list. If we forget why he did this and how easy it was for him to do so than we are doing a disservice to the 49 people he murdered and the 53 he seriously injured, not to mention all the people who love those individuals.
There has to be a world in which things like this don’t happen. We know it’s not the world of generations past, and it clearly is not the world we live in now, so our only hope is that it’s the world of future generations. But it can’t possibly be a reality if we do not do something now. We have to change gun laws. We have to change the way talk about hate and bigotry. We have to change how often we speak of love and put more trust in the idea that love always wins.

 

000

Working Through It

At what point does one say, “Enough!” and truly mean it? When do you have to stick with that rash, emotional, in-the-moment, gut feeling and follow it through.

I know that in a long game, overall sort of thought process I am making the more correct choice to stay at a job that brings me a lot of negatives. It pays too good to let go of when what I need to make my escape quicker is money and financial security. It also works so well with my other job and schedule, so it has some pros going for it.

But at what point do I fully acknowledge the giant, monster sized con can (and is very, very, close to) outweigh all of those pros? How many hours do I have to sit in a frustrated stew? How many times do I have to cry to get out the anger and feeling of being insulted? How much do I stay silent, when all I want to do is scream?

I know that by making the choice I am, I am risking my mental health and in a way how I value my self-worth (in small ways really, but they are still ways). But I also know that if I can find a way to stick it out, to get a temporary fix, it will benefit me my long run. If I can just grin and bear it and keep collecting my checks, than I can take that money and get far away and closer to my happy…or at least happier part to my life’s journey.

I am completely aware too, that fear, and my overwhelming stock pile of it, is a contributing factor to my decision. I have never had to quit a job because I am unhappy or feel disrespected.I have never had to be looking for a new job so that if/when I quit my uncomfortable one I am not going to be losing money. I’ve never had to rough out a shitty situation so that I can make lemonade in bulk later.

So yes, I am afraid to take the risk of quitting a job for the sake of mental health and happiness. I am afraid to find a new job that would probably not be able to pay me what I make at said crappy job and would likely ask me to change my amazing purple hair, and might also not work around my other (much more enjoyable) job I have right now. Especially I am afraid to do that knowing that I’d like to be gone from this town in the next year and a half. I don’t like the idea of starting semi fresh when I know I have no plans to last a could be hurting this company that at one time helped me.

I think too much.

And ultimately I’ve written all of this knowing that my decision stand because it makes the most sense.

Small picture? No. It’s a confused, jumbled mess. Things don’t align and something we (tears most likely) have streaked the colors, making it difficult to line up.

But big picture? Yes. If you step back you’ll see you’re too focused on a small section or a corner area. properly see how things shift and slide into their logical-ish place. The small, and garbled inconsistencies actually fall perfectly into a thought out and cohesive image.

 

Or I’ll a mental break down from stress and feeling too many things before I can stir the sugar into the sour lemon juice and the pitcher is worthless and I’ll have to start all over from scratch. It’s a crap shoot, this game of life.

It feels like a sort of torture now and I hate it all so much, but I am choosing to believe that somewhere down the line I will be happy. And at that time I’ll know I was the smarter and better person and it was the right choice instead of just logical choice.

I’ll know I made a very competent decision.