Archive for February, 2016

Politics and Ethics: Can You Dig it?

Posted in About me on February 29, 2016 by Tyrienne

Dig it   I have a certain respect for people who both post on a regular schedule- as well as those who seldom update at all.  The first group, I admire their consistency of purpose, however, that is also how we end up reading 1000 words on the important topic of

“I was at the grocery store buying mangoes…” and “I have been much more regular since I started eating more mangoes.”

Then, there are the people who post seldom, and those people tend to have quality posts every time- but novella to novel length as if the act of holding in so many thoughts became such a great burden that it becomes an absolute universe of Lynchian synchronicity for what would also be a Lynchian amount of pages.

I’ve been endeavoring to  finish “Twin Peaks”- I saw “Fire Walk With Me” and enjoyed it.
I’m house training my puppy.
I’m recovering from a foot injury (just when I thought I was well)
I’m fixing up my house.
and
I’ve been  seeking legal council over a medical malpractice suit I have been trying to to file on behalf of local PTSD patients facing discrimination while recovering from surgery in hospital.

Other than that- I support none of the presidential candidates- feeling that the leader of the United States should be both a military veteran as well as the creme de la creme, rather than the raw sewage, of our political system.  I have the strange aspiration that a true group of leaders will emerge from the middle and lower classes and be risen up by We The People and set forth a Utopia- but intellectually I also am aware of the impossibly and live vicariously through old movies and playing RPG’s.

I live in Pennsylvania and I am registered third party-  what this means is I cannot vote in any primary unless I misrepresent myself and choose one of the two major parties to vote expressly in their primary- a bias I have not found living in other states.  I feel strongly enough against both major, centrist parties that I find misrepresentation of one’s civic beliefs to be abhorrent.

Since there is no party I fall “in line” with- I am Independent or No Affiliation- and I have no interest in joining a formal party at this time- but I desire to represent myself honestly as a third party voter and not accept the unconstitutional requirement to align myself with ideologies I do not agree with entirely in order to express my right to vote.

To fight for the rights of third party voters, we cannot easily secede our third party affiliation on our voter registration cards.  This simply skews the numbers of the two major parties, falsely.

It has been said: “Pennsylvania is not a state, it is a commonwealth” repeatedly as one of the many excuses for this lack of civic representation of politically-minded individuals who do not fall into the centrist spectrum.

For me, I even find the labels of “Liberal” and “Conservative” to be ill-fitting to my political idealogy as well.  The limitation of black and white thinking became very apparent when I was randomly selected for Gallup Poll- the questions were restricted to a Clinton/Trump competition- and I attempted to explain to the the person administering the survey that here, in the United States, we can express our voice of “No Confidence” in our two party system via third party voting and write in.

Some have attacked this view on social media claiming it is “throwing a vote away.”

That is far from the truth- for if you do not find it agreeable to your ethic to vote for either candidate- then instead of being absent from the process to invite the critism later of “You cannot complain if you do not vote”- one can actually claim a moral high ground with the action…

“I did vote- but I didn’t support either Centrist party since they do not represent my values and priorities.”

Aristotle was one who indicated a life of active civic duty was the highest calling to which one could aspire . However, modern civics has become armchair-lazy without active engagement in most cases.

However, very few people have the time to seek a civic life outside of the demands of career and family responsibilities- since everyone outside of the disabled and highest economic classes have the freedom of time to do so- and even so, there seems to be a great feeling of “danger” to me in expressing dissent in the current McCarthyism environment where instead of “commies” the country is seeking unpopular opinions to tar and feather political dissension against the status quo….unless that dissension is related to minor issues that do not involve criticism of not just a topical symptom of deeper societal ills.

A good example of topical criticism :

“I will not associate with anyone who believes/says/supports (topic)”

Okay, so  what this basically is the equivilent to in the meat-sphere of real life outside of the internet is the childish metaphoric covering of the ears and screaming:

“LA LA LA I CAN’T HEAR YOU!  I REFUSE TO ACCEPT OTHER VIEWPOINTS I FIND ABHORRENT EXIST!”

And then, there is the requisite “splitting” of families over political views which is entirely unnecessary and also a symptom of the greater disease of dividing all but the highest classes- in order to keep us from allying with each other and suffering through a coupe.

It has become abhorrent, through media conditioning, to even associate with peoples who hold different experiences and viewpoints.

One of the greatest lessons of Loki is the ability to ally oneself with those from every walk of life- In the case of Loki- He was well connected with Jotuns, Dwarves, and several other realms of sentient creatures that are normally enemies between themselves- in doing so, those with less fluid points of view claim him to be “untrustworthy”.

I find I trust less the people who are not willing to listen to every point of view of objectivity- especially ones that contradict the view one currently holds.

I have friends who are #blacklivesmatter as well as those who are Trump supporters.

I have friends who are even anti-SSDI, knowing that they do not understand what it is like to be on disability, the complication of the vetting process to be determined disabled, nor even the difficulties that only people on federal Disability experience with endless doctors visits, reviews, and fights with insurance companies to be billed fairly and correctly as well as in a timely manner.

In a sense, when one has any “active” medical condition that requires care it becomes a full time job not just to recover from surgeries and any chronic condition- but also to be watchful of being taken advantage of by unscrupulous insurance companies who count on people on SSDI to not question incorrect billing practices.  Abhorrent, when it is realized that every single person on federal SSDI is only collecting 12k a year, and in most cases, far less- which puts most below the threshhold of the poverty line.

So- in a sense- the people who are disabled enough for SSDI are often even neutralized politically since the disabilities they endure often require activism for fair treatment leaving little time and energy for people in situations like I have found myself to do much more than care for myself and take care of the the pressing issue of preventing myself from being taken advantage of financially and being billed for treatments that I was told were “covered” (such as an EKG, in my most recent argument with the hospital)- but insurance decided to fight otherwise requiring documentation from multiple healthcare providers in some cases since tests tend to be out of entirely different facilities than the attending physicians themselves.

I am finding that the sheer volume of inaccurate information being spread online via social media to be increasing, and as a result, deeply depressing.

I read an article yesterday proclaiming the color blue “doesn’t exist” outside of our perception and that ancient peoples did not recognize it… what small training in Linguistics I have (and knowing what little Lettish I do, Lettish being one of the oldest Sanskrit-based ‘living’ languages)- knowing that both Farsi and Lettish have multiple words for “blue”, in addition to being languages that remain older in spoken form in comparison to mainland-European language families which have changed dramatically over the past thousand years is enough to disprove that idiocy.

But yet, people do not apply the same common sense to debunk faux political statements- and it has become nigh impossible to find unbiased news sources that do not rely on opinions, weasel-words, false reporting, bad journalism, sensationalism, or simply work as headers into click-bait articles on absolutely nothing of substance.

The real issue isn’t “He said/She said”- the real, crushingly depressing issue is that we cannot know unless we are present- and despite all of our technologies, we cannot trust what we see on account of censorship and extreme journalistic editing.

I feel as if my time in Political Science classes did indeed open my eyes, but unlike most, that combined with my cynical heritage of Deitsch who were forbidden by the state from speaking our own language for much of the past century in conjunction with coming from that microscopic Lettish ethnic group decimated by Stalin’s more greatly ‘successful’ holocaust of ethnic cultures during WWII- it actually made me more cynical than I was before, and that cynicism has lead me to a sense of estrangement regarding the faux-dualistic and divisive nature of American politics and policy.

The “inconsistency” of remaining mentally flexible enough to change a point of view based on new information is seen as abhorrent by those who are proud of their dedication to their respective causes and political rationale, failing to adapt to new information is seen as “admirable”- saying “I don’t have enough information” is seen incorrectly as a sig of weakness in lieu of being accurately seen as honest.

Such is life of any person aligned with Loki in a positive, constructive manner.

Knowing from experience abroad that “news is different outside of these borders”= I cannot trust sources I used to rely on years ago for unbiased journalism- and I find myself in the company of only a few, older academics in my despair over this rather than being swept up by the minutiae of presidential elections when it seems Freedom of Press only applies to op-eds no more or less reliable than this blog- rather than trained, unbiased journalism of reporting events in a factual, open manner and allowing the consumer to make a value judgement.

We live in an era of false heroes and fake terrors- as President Putin of Russia pointed out- it was the United States that funded ISIS- and yet, people have strong opinions on specific events of foriegn policy that are based in inaccurate portrayals of events.

What is the truth?  The problem is we are not in a position to know- and THAT should be the most disturbing thing.

Blue always existed, no matter what it is called- but daily our vocabulary of English is shrinking to 140 characters of l33tsp3ak nonsense as most people find Academic English vulgar, pretentious, and off-putting in favor of the casual language of anti-intellectualism.

My facebook is now nothing more than a storehouse of ironic, topical memes and troll-baiting posts I use to amuse myself at the expense of the frustration of others who get into extended political debates with complete strangers about candidates for the office of “Figurehead” while we actually live in a corporate oligarchy with little means to actually affect national levels of change without significant enough cash to rival the business interests in poisoning our water, air, and food supply in order to give the CEO’s of this world their million-dollar bonuses while the peasants infight amongst ourselves over issues so much less dire than the complete loss of our faculty to thrive without being entirely in-debt to those same overlords.

Do you have student loans?  A mortgage?  Car payments?   Without student loans- college is inaccessible to most.  Without a mortgage, home ownership is impossible for most of the middle class without a windfall or being forced to live in low-density population areas that lack opportunity, and without a car- even getting that house in a low population area makes finding indentured servitude to pay these debts prohibitive.

Kennedy was shot for claiming there was a system out to “Enslave every man, woman, and child” but never had the chance to express his thoughts on the manner more deeply prior to his assassination.

Snowden is still a political refugee in Russia.

People of high IQ are forced through school systems that punish free-thought and force brilliant minds to be subdued by denying curiosity in learning in favor of endless testing and re-testing of our nation’s students in K-12 without teaching any valuable life skills in self-sufficiency or civic duty- while private academies seem to be the golden ticket to Ivy league exceptionalism dividing our youth between the poor majority vs. a ruling, better educated minority based entirely on income rather than intellect or ethic.

The ethics that are being espoused of our modern culture of consumerism, waste, and distraction are meant to enslave us, and they do, and I am no exception and no better nor worse than any other American; and like most, I turn to distractions such as games or click-bait to take my focus away from the abject horror of knowing that as rapidly as our middle class slides into poverty, that globally speaking, even those who live in poverty here- still have a king’s wealth when compared to the majority of human population living in complete destitution working slave hours, for less pay, and absolutely no hope for freedom producing the goods and services that keep our country anesthetized against the suffering that surrounds us/is resultant from our lifestyle and the wordless learning and seeking most have for Truth when there is none to be found.

I have been intentionally limiting my time online on account of these thoughts- and have found the less time I am near a computer or any other media the better I feel… realizing the only change I can affect is to my immediate surroundings, life, and impact that I have with direct conversation instead of the illusion that anything I say or do online is forgotten in minutes in favor of yet another adorable video of tickling kittens or watching foolish people have foolish accidents, “Jackass”-style.

Ultimately, I wrote today because this is the first time I felt compelled to in weeks- and that is generally my only motivation for writing…. that feeling of compulsion.

I do not know if what I have written today will benefit any of you or if it is simply nothing more than an outlet for me to “blow off some steam” and explain why I have been largely absenting myself from online activities more than usual.

Regardless- no matter what anyone or anything tries to say otherwise, I can assure you that the color “blue”, as you know it, is not an “invention” of modern times…

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Dangerous Technology…For Freedom, Seek Trees.

Posted in About me on February 7, 2016 by Tyrienne

 

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This is a picture of Ridley Creek State Park in Delaware County, Pa.  My favorite park in the entire world.  Go here if you get the chance.

Uniformly, throughout the entire social sphere of friends I’ve kept throughout the years- it’s pretty safe to say that the vast majority of people in their early 30’s have grown far too sedentary in an almost forgetful sense.

Now that we all have families, bills, and responsibilities, the nature of our activities have changed.   One thing we all had in common in our late teens and early twenties was the unspoken assumption that “hanging out” would occur in the woods.  Almost every single close friend I had either lived within a wooded area, or we would drive to some obscure wooded location and hike around for hours, just talking and watching for animals.

Of course, there is always the possibility I’m just a stubborn asshole who was impossible to convince to come out of seclusion otherwise- I honestly don’t know.  My memory is shit.

However- My observation of the present is still working quite well…and looking down the list of phone numbers in my cell phone, the vast majority of my old hiking buddies locally no longer are able or willing, and those that still make a daily trek into nature either now live on the West Coast or bizarre states shaped like quadrilaterals (adjacent to the West Coast).

For the area I grew up in, Haverford, very few of my peers remain in the area as we are entirely Priced Out of the Main Line entirely for the most part.  The few who remain in the area either live with other family members or have moved to areas nearby that are less safe and far less scenic with much less access to parks and wildlife.  They are 2 hours from me.

For my friends in Bucks county who live around Nockamixon and Peace Valley- they are still in the area, however work and home responsibilities keep all but a single family I know away from the woods, except for those who continue to live in homes literally inside of park territory… and even then, those who live in those homes are enjoying the trees from the inside as they are cleaning crayons off the wall or tethered to their computers for work or leisure. They are over an hour from me and have shitty traffic.

Of course, the Heathens go outside for Sumbel, but our very paleness shows our Morlock,  subterranean natures of our respective lives….all of us housed in our boxes of home and office.

Since I adopted my husky, Ziu, two days ago- it seems he will only take a shit after a conservative estimate of a two mile “walk” which involved wind-sprints and several stops to reward the dog with differing amounts of boiled chicken every single time he made a bowel or bladder movement as a sort of bizarre canine financial transaction involving poultry as currency.

After my surgery in September- I found I have the ability to jog again after years of literally not being physically capable of doing so on account of scar adhesion in my torso.  Now I CAN run…technically, kind of.  Instead of not being able to actually perform the action- I have kidney stones that like to rattle around enough to make me fall to my knees on occasion and then find I’m pissing blood when I finally return inside.

To accommodate for this- there is random patio chairs now situated in convenient locations across the yard so I can sit and clutch my stomach as the dog looks at me blankly as if to say:

“If we don’t run, I won’t poo….but you’re cold, let’s go inside and I’ll just poo there.”

His concern is touching…. in a weird dog sort of way.

But what really struck me was last night…after I was outside for a solid three hours holding a leash in one hand, a flashlight in the other and sitting on the chair in stalemate with said dog my husband came out extraordinarily concerned about the amount of time I had been outside.

I honestly didn’t mind.  We live at the junction of two streams-  We have a flock of several dozen mallards and down in the stream, there are still occasional fish to watch swim around.  It’s actually quite nice.   The weather was a nice, dry cold (comparably for Pennsylvania…it’s not Montana).

I then realized how strange it was how much the ENTIRETY of the culture surrounding me had changed in under ten years.   Sure, I walked around my college campus often, but it’s nothing compared to walking someplace with no pavement and no visible roads. Our dog trail is two miles long, owned by the township, runs through our backyard and prior to the husky we used it twice…maybe.  Natasha’s coat is too short for long outings in the cold.  (however, we got her in September- I imagine summer will be a different case entirely)

I know it’s not just myself who had become “unplugged” from nature- going into nature instead of being the natural state of being has somehow transitioned into being an hour event for sumbels and “as needed” for when short-furred Natasha needs to relieve herself or we run like squirrels to retrieve our mail and take out the garbage only to run back into the house again away from the mild discomfort of “weather”.

I have spent several hundred days of my life online in some form.

From the time I was a child, there was rarely a day I did not spend at least an hour or more outside- either playing when I was younger, walking my coydog in my teens, or with friends in my young adulthood.

Woods, woods, and more woods.   When I moved to Winthrop, Massachusetts in 2002 for the AmeriCorps, there were no woods, but instead I found myself walking the entire beach around the peninsula as well as attached Deer Island for an hour each night unless the weather was literally dangerous; Sleet/torrential rain drowned us out pretty easily- I was glad I rented an attic bedroom and often I recall slowly driving my car through roads of a few inches of water slowly until I reached higher grounds.

Even after Winthrop, I still hiked wherever I lived:  Minnesota I would bring one of the “yard mutts” at the wolf refuge with me as I hit the trails across the street.  In Peekskill, NY- I was fortunate to rent a room in a mansion with extensive grounds that included a small lake and complete isolation except for our gravel driveway.

I moved back to Pennsylvania- when I visited my grandparents on the Main Line- I would drive the extra 20 minutes to walk in Ridley Creek State Park, when I worked jobs that required travel around King of Prussia, you could find me spending extended lunch breaks in Valley Forge National Park…. and in these parks, it was never unusual to encounter my friends at that time.

As time passed from mid-to late twenties and early to mid thirties, most of us had fallen into a sort of anti-nature routine where our only exposures outdoors were brief.  Friends to hike with became fewer until it became an activity we only accomplished when friends from over an hour away visit or with acquaintances who never stopped being outdoors- but also never stopped the reckless activities of teenagers, either.   Hiking is GREAT- hiking with drunk people on meth when we do neither as a way to keep them from being suicidal?  Not so great.

Over the past three years, friends have moved out of state and those who had addiction problems ended up becoming even more mired in their respective addictions to the point where we had to entirely remove ourselves from a confusing amount of people we counted a close friends who ended up on meth or cocaine- from every imaginable walk of life and not just Heathens, either.

We hiked on dates three years ago, then my health deteriorated on account of Lyme’s disease and then, more recently, being forced to wait for several months to have my ovary (and surrounding scar tissue) removed which made me lazy and inert to a level I had not been since that two year stint I ran a “Hardcore” raiding guild on World of Warcraft and lived in a fantasy world of elves and dwarves to avoid the awful reality of being in a terrible relationship, stuck in jobs I hated, to pay bills that never ended and always seemed to have some problem such as double-charging my accounts or being constantly on guard against utility companies taking advantage of me on account of my youth in believing that I would not question sudden, miscellaneous charges I had not experienced prior.

Also- during those two years, I did not go outside despite living literally in the middle of the woods then as I do now, I seldom left the house for nature’s sake except for a couple of times a month, if that.

Now- I am back outside, and I realize how strange it has become that nature had mistakenly been my unnamed “enemy” in favor of online distractions which accomplished nothing much at all- such as facebook or silly little puzzle games.

I have no compunction against stating I believe we are being mass-brainwashed by technologies.

I am frustrated when I see friends of mine glued to their cellphones.  I hardly even text and when I attempt to reconnect with real-life people….I find their primary means of communication is a series of sentences delivered via texting instead of even the decency of a phone call.  Chatting online is emotionless except for manufactured emoji’s and memes (some of which I created myself) to replace the loss of tone of voice, body language, and facial expressions we now lack in most interactions with others.

Then, even worse-  the nature of social networking makes it impossible to entirely and completely remove people from your life where in the past- natural aversion would take its course.

Belonging to online communities of thousands means you use “block” at your peril.   I use the feature frequently and find myself chastised for it.   Why on Earth would I want to interact with people who do nothing but speak in ad hominem regarding me?  In real life, there are always methods of avoidance.  Online, even if blocked, these people remain like splinters in your lives that can only be removed by removing the entire area in which they reside, usually painfully if it’s a forum or topic you like particularly.

I am in the trap where I moderate several online forums and pages at this time- it was one way to find a rabbit hole away from not just harmful acquaintances, but also this new phenomenon of a sea of “internet people”-  those who only seem to exist online but real life friendship never occurs since their online persona(e) tends to be entirely different than the life they lead physically and meeting would lead to “seeing the man behind the mask”.

I have kidney pain,  my foot is still kind of gimpy from a broken toe I never bothered to check out and now I am forced to if I want to be able to actually take proper care of my animals without causing further damage to my foot and ligaments.  (appointment Tues)…but only 3 days of just being OUTSIDE has literally made me stop caring about so many things I Only Care About On The Internet ™…. from the presidential race to the utterly bizarre addiction to living vicariously through other’s pictures of meals and travel photographs.

As a culture, we have become domesticated Iguanas who only move to feed or to find a warm rock to lay on and grow fat- and I am not an exception.

The exception is in seeing this new culture of being “plugged in”- unbiased and without filter.

Being outside for three hours gave me the inspiration to write this post- which although is online, is still actually CREATING something…anything.   Most of what my generations creates in their free time is text messages, and accomplishments on Candy Crush.

All things are fine in moderation- but when one can look back on most encounters with non-Heathens, including close friends and relations- it seems more time is spent with them looking at their phones, texting on their phones, or generally being entirely DISENGAGED from physical reality entirely…again, except to eat, shit, and find physical comfort.

I really do not want to be pulled further into that black hole- but keeping a balance is extraordinarily difficult.

Friends who have left social media entirely, coincidentally, are also next to completely inaccessible.  Those are generally the same people who have disconnected their cell phones and almost demand you live within the same town for any interpersonal interaction- with home prices being prohibitive, staying close to friends is difficult, along with a changing job market which requires constant movement across the country (and in some cases, the world) in many fields, not to mention the lack of job options which forces people either into long commutes to spend 8 hours with strangers they hate apart from the family they slowly grow ever further distant- which explains just one reason why divorce is so prevalent and most of my friends are either divorced, perpetually single, or both.

It’s fantastic we all now have the ability to find our “bff’s” from grammar school just by searching their name, but it’s also terrifying that we can be so easily traced and found at the same time.  Maybe it’s because I’m a Baltic who lived during the cold war with my grandma’s phonelines tapped and seeing her friend-group of ancient old Latvian ladies under suspicion constantly for being spies for having the audacity to “return home” to Latvia for holidays and choose to live here instead of behind the iron curtain.

The only example I can give that I think I can communicate well is during the era of McCarthyism, privacy and the destruction there of became the catalyst for the destruction of countless lives and families where people even insinuated to be “commies” were treated with extreme prejudice… this came almost directly and in reaction to the atrocities of WWII where, again- our rights to privacy were invaded and scrutinized by our government and neighbors out of fears of “sympathy” to our imagined devils of Japanese and Germans living here on our own soil who honestly had nothing to do with the conflicts occurring abroad.

However, those prejudices were long-lasting… now, prejudices and what is considered “politically correct” seems to change rapidly- so rapidly that obscenely stupid decisions made by people in the “correct” circumstances/time frame are lauded to the point of denying the flaws inherent in each human…and those who err, whether slight or egregiously are treated with the same level of malice.

With that being said:  Caitlyn Jenner should not have won woman of the year- with a history of unapologetic vehicular manslaughter… the other nominees for the award were staggeringly more qualified.   Knowing several people in transition as well- Jenner did not help to normalize the stigma for that population, but made a farce of it in my opinion simply because wearing a dress and getting boobs is no where near as traumatizing as the typical family and community stigma, and alienation so many of my trans and chimera friends experience daily.  Jenner is nothing more than yet another celebrity with a magic bank account.  There are better examples for the transgender community to look to, such as Chaz Bono, Laverne Cox, Lana Wachowski , and especially Billie Tipton.

Bill Cosby is a rapist who deserves no quarter.

A picture of a woman wearing the “wrong” outfit, however, will receive equal amounts of negative attention- as do comments made by any gender regarding any number of recently created micro-crisis such as MRA, Excessive Gender terminology, #[insert]livesmatter, or even the vegans screaming at meat eaters over their dietary choices to the point of literal, hostile harassment all the while crowing about some sort of ethical “higher ground” for a diet that literally would be impossible for those who do not live in temperate or tropical regions without the subjugation of people in tropical climates to grow enough obscure produces to meet the dietary demands of some random people in Sweden or metropolitan areas of the united states where vegan options are plentiful.

There seems to be absolutely no comprehension of poverty and those who do not have internet to explain that Veganism doesn’t work for people with IBS, ignores the high costs associated with the lifestyle making it impossible for the impoverished to receive all their vital nutrients without sacrificing rent money….and further, only works RIGHT NOW in most colder climates on account of NATO.

Our country is dividing pretty dramatically between people who are “plugged in and socially aware” by their standards, and newly minted introverts who are dramatically striving to become independent from all of this- by homesteading, mostly….attempting to grow their own food again when every generation from Baby Boomer’s forward was ingrained with the false idea that farmers and those who do manual labor for a living are somehow inferior to those who sit behind a desk for 8 hours literally doing nothing but communicating with strangers in some way with no interaction or desire for interaction with their communities any longer.  There just isn’t the time to do both in most people’s lives.

The introverted homesteaders are basically comprised of several subgroups and related demonetization as well: seen as Doomsday prepping lunatics, cultists, backwards, uneducated, fundamentalist, or even racist by association since some Asatru and Christian homesteaders happen to be all about the Hitler nonsense. (Other religions seem immune).

We have a nation of renters who have no desire to own land or have any civic interactions with their community barring an occasional vote for marijuana legislation or to beg for clean water and improved education for our children.

Honestly, I’m fucking scared…and I think almost everyone feels the same way to some degree but few can really put words as to “why”… I know why I am, and I can only theorize about the nature of other humans:

To me, I see most of the internet as mental anesthesia-  there is a hell of a lot of pain that comes from broken families, broken relationships, unfullfilling work, and people who in an agrarian society who would be perfectly functional are forced into disability because many people cannot meet the rigid requirements of typical employment on account of health issues where working on the homestead can be done in between episodes or with the help of family and friends working together to make up for the disability instead of the embarrassment of having to apply to jobs and disclose “I have a personal health condition, here are my private details on that health condition- some weeks, I cannot work at all when said health condition is effecting my body.”

In a poor economy, no employer in their right mind would hire that person, no matter how qualified, when they can get an equally qualified individual without the medical issues that would leave the cubical absent instead of filled with yet another human drone to pick up the phone, write the numbers, or create the webpages…and the people in those positions actually ENVY those of us on disability while we struggle against our health insurance at least weekly to cover the necessary treatments and medications that keep us alive and stable.

That resentment is another reason I am scared.  I am on disability, my husband has a factory job.  I make less than poverty in subsidies as Medicare refuses to give authorization for treatment to improve my condition rather than simply “stabilize” my cardiac and mental impairments which are rather easier to treat in other first world countries, but not so much here….as yet ANOTHER group of people seems to be metaphorically screaming “AMERICA IS #1!!!!” ad nauseum and to point out personal experience with flaws in our government system in comparison to other places one is instantly met with McCarthy like disdain for even dare to critique in a way that is not currently in vogue.

Criticism is acceptable on certain topics- and those topics change from person to person.

I don’t even know or recognize most “current” celebrities or new musicians, and for that- my lack of interest and knowledge of these people I will never meet combine with my innate disdain for consumerism which makes me feel strange and awkward with even people my own age further than ever before.

I have always journaled since I could write, and with my shaking hands a pc is a godssend- but to record my thoughts online is nothing new, just the attention I get for it is new.

I really do not have a solution to the current problems I am observing- In spending more time out in nature- I think with a terrible clarity but with that clarity comes unpopular observations, uncomfortable realizations, and halcyon memories of grabbing some jerky and a liter of water to go out into the woods for a day with friends who no longer see the woods outside of the lives they live through vicariously through television and video games- and I am no exception at times.

To become one with the current culture is to be miserable, on edge, and feel suffocated by people I would be forced to tolerate but cannot affect change upon their actions to make them not lying shitbags with a code of ethics as flimsy as a cellphone with planned obsolesce.

To keep up, you need to be shallow as a puddle and willing to change the entirety of how you present yourself to the world based on ever changing standards of behavior, speech, and very temporary ethics.

I will never fit in, anywhere.  I’m okay with that right now.

A Dog named Ziu? Seriously?

Posted in About me on February 5, 2016 by Tyrienne

When I am in the midst of nervous breakdown (once or twice a year) I end up getting some silly idea in my head as a remedy.  This time, the breakdown was brought on by a disturbing packet of paperwork demanding the names, contact information, and procedures performed by every single doctor I have seen in the past year.

Keep in mind, I just had surgery in September, they gave me two days- even with an extension, frantic calls to my lawyer, therapist, social worker, and everyone EXCEPT friends and family- I was still a fucked up insomniac with a constant migraine worried that if I couldn’t match the correct doctor to the correct procedure some horrible fate awaited me… (and might still, I sent off the paperwork and I am notorious for not believing people when they say “REN YOU WILL BE FINE”.

So, I suddenly became fixated on rescuing a Siberian Husky mix…. a mix because I was concerned for my three cats.  Since there is a rescue nearby, it didn’t take long to get approval to be a “Qualified Adopter” with the 2 mile dog run that goes through our property adjacent to the creek and the added bonus that Ed and I both worked with wolves and already adopted an overactive pitt/lab/border collie mix from a shitty shelter.

Anyway, we signed up for the rescue at a bad time; the owner is ill and they were not in a position to do either adoptions nor even accept new huskies. No worries, turns out there was a man on Craigslist who was one of the people rejected due to this unforeseen circumstance.

After 22 absolutely bizarre emails exchanged, I learned his dog was named “Zeus” and convinced him to bring him by.  Since the emails were so bizarrely written I was convinced the man was some sort of “bro” with such wonderful emails as “I leave work at 3, home by 6” but with no contact information or further info.

It felt like exchanging emails with Ralph Wiggum.

I realized why the dog had been “up” on Craigslist for 4 days… conversation took patience- he had 14 other people interested, but none willing to pay a rehoming fee but some shady mofo from a dogfighting town 3 hours North in Hillbilly country.

He wrote the name of the dog was “Zeus”- and I thought to myself “Great…if this goes like every other animal I’ve lived with named after a God/dess- this one will hump anything that moves.” and was pretty set on changing the name to “Baron”- the pup is only 10 months old and still looked gangly and goofy in the online pictures.

Ed said “$200″….and what do you know?  After I explained our living situation (me home 95% of the time, an invite to see if his dog and Natasha would get along well, and the house/backyard) the guy reluctantly agreed to meet us last night at 6:30pm.

The dog that tentatively was pulled from his car was a gorgeous breed-standard husky dog, entirely docile and sweet.

Ed couldn’t be there, but his mother who rescues bassett hounds was happy to wait with me.  The dogs got off to a slow start…but as soon as the leashes were off, they made fast friends and seem more closely bonded to each other than to either the releasing owner or Natasha to myself.

The dog was purebreed with papers- and almost entirely ignores the kitties except as a vague curiosity….

But what was really curious is the man kept saying “Ziu! Ziu!” every time he spoke to the dog… I asked why.

He wrote down the word “Zeus” and said “We pronounce it like this- Ziu.”

Well, fuck.  Most of you know this already, but “Ziu” is just another name for Tyr.

He was actually a sweet man from the Islands who lost his local job and now worked in Philadelphia- he really loved this dog, but worked 16 hour days and left Ziu crated all that time and felt awful about it.  He was crying when he left and so was Ziu, my heart hurt for both of them- but I am glad we were the one’s to adopt Ziu since I have the time to fix the potty-issues where most would not.

…And the dog responds to “Ziu” when called- so, we changed the spelling for our sake and the sake of our veterinarian and I can’t help but feel like I’m back in college again with two mentors trying to vie for my academic attention-  As if Tyr was an Ethics professor and Loki, Civics….and each is trying to bribe/teach me at the same time.

Loki: “I got her a husband.”
Tyr: “I got her a dog…and named it after myself.”
Loki: “…The husband is housebroken.”
Tyr: “So to, will be the dog. You think any gift I give is without work?!”

Seriously, though…what are the odds of finding a perfectly sweet husky named Ziu, the Urglaawe word for Tyr?

So far today according to the step counter on my phone we’ve walked over 2 miles.  He’s 10 months old, is not housebroken, but is so sweet and beautiful he reminds me of some male models I’ve met over the years…. Not the brightest, but beautiful and nice enough to compensate.

He has a shiny new harness, toys, a girlfriend in Natasha, and a life outside of 16 hours in a cage.  As for housebreaking… I don’t leave the property much anyway.   Being a “Dog Warden” who scoops him up, puts a leash on him, and puts him outside everytime he even looks like he is interested in relieving himself is tiring but far from impossible.

It just takes all the patience I never thought I had…  Also, unlike Natasha, I am now forced to get my broken foot looked at because running hurts like hell but the only way to train a husky is to tire it into happy submission.

My dear readers….what would you think if you were looking at a dog who just randomly happened to be named after your patron God in your second language….how would you react?

Ziu

The black Shadow is Natasha, and here is a meta-photo of the author attempting to photograph the dog unsuccessfully as Ed’s mom got the best shot to date!

I really need to paint those cabinets this summer, too.