16 September 2022

Oh great, another billionaire gives away their fortune to, a dun-dun-duh dah, NOT their employees!

I'm fucking pissed. Fucking fucking pissed. Fuming mad. Like I have the sweats; I'm about to cry, and I'm filled with the kind of rage that makes me feel hopeless. 

I read this New York Times Article, "Billionaire No More: Patagonia Founder Gives Away the Company," as soon as it crawled upon my screen for my eyes to see. I had to know what this guy, the "Founder," did, exactly, because this is a very general headline, which I'd bet, makes little to no sense to the majority of people. Obviously, NYT readers are of a certain ilk, a kind of which I'm slowly becoming bored, nevertheless, an article or two make it into my feed, and with the help of my local library's free temporary NYT subscription, I read a lot of The NYT's view of the world. 

And I imagine that you, obviously, understood the headline, because you are a very intelligent person if you've found yourself on this site and you enjoy it. My point is that the headline reads that some billionaire has "given away" his fortune. This is some serious bullshit. Well, I guess it's not bullshit in the sense that he has (perhaps) given up his wealth. This is probably true. What I mean by this being complete and utter bullshit is that why?, time after time, why, do employers care so little about/for the people WHO WORK FOR THEM?

I'll tell you why. 

It's because no good ever comes from an empowered laborer. 

If you work for someone else, but do not "need" the money the job affords, the employer has no power over you. 

If you are financially independent, you do not need an employer. You are an empowered laborer. 

An empowered laborer has no need for employment.

I find this "selfless act" by this particular billionaire to be quite selfish, actually. Through a simple search of the interwebs, Patagonia may have about 2,700 employees. According to the article, Patagonia is siphoning off all of it's roughly $100M profits to a 501(c)(3) that will be responsible for the ethical usage of that money toward the "fight" (I use quotes because this is not how I'd put it, nevertheless) against climate change. Some pretty do-gooder-ass shit here. Like seriously. A round of slow applause. 

I imagine that this guy is making headlines because it seems so generous to "give away" this much money toward the "fight" against climate change. What I see, however, is some old white guy doing the absolute minimum. If the company split the profits with its employees, he'd be cutting, perhaps, $35K checks to each of them, year after year. Empowering them. And maybe, he even creates environments for his employees to then reach their full entrepreneurial, wealthy, powerful potential. 

But what about climate change?!?! I hear you pathetically whimper (not you, you intelligent reader of this blog, obviously, not you, but rather, them!). 

Yea, duh, corporations have a huge responsibility to do what they must in order to be "net zero" (again with the quotes for the same reason stated above). But it is an entire GLOBAL SYSTEM within which we exist. This is not a problem solvable by a handful of good-doing corporations. 

Climate Change is a planetary ecological disaster that MUST include every country on this planet, if we want to survive, unless it is the wasteland of an Elysium-type dystopian utopia that we strive to make real. And it is with these types of acts by the billionaires currently in existence that shepherds us, so gently, into an Elysium-type dystopian future. An elite minority ruling over a powerless majority. It's textbook.

To empower the laborers of the Patagonia company, from top to bottom, equally, is to empower humans. Empowered humans can make empowered decisions, not only for themselves, but also, for everyone else who is like them. Wage laborers outnumber the "haves" like one hundred to one. There are so many more of us who trade our time for some livable wages. This guy, this owner who is "giving away" the company is the one, and there are literally about 2,700 others. The fact that he'd rather "give away" the company's profits to some entity filled with fat suits making probably $100K/year to "distribute" all of the hard-earned profits worked for by the employees he employs rather than the employees themselves makes me sick. It's so gross and so elitist that I just want to punch a fucking hole in the wall. 

Of course, I suppose, I'm particularly sensitive to issues like these when considering that I have sweat and toiled for over a decade as an entrepreneur only to finally come to my piece de resistance, my ethical capitalism model, the LOPSIII model, or the Locally-Owned Profit-Sharing Income-Inequality Inhibitor. I think of ideas like this, wherein the laborer, you, are empowered to reach your dreams through the hard work you do and to which you commendably show up day after day, year after year. Why, why as an employer, would I want anything less for you? 

And then this guy exists. An elitist, white ass-hole, who'd rather imbue more elitist suits with power? Fuck you, guy. Where's my raise? 

But I want to end on a positive note, and I'm finding myself searching, grasping for any sorta white-optimism, and quite frankly, there ain't none.


06 September 2022

When Misogyny, Impostor Syndrome, &Female Empowerment Coalesce on/for Streaming/Television aka 'What I'm Watching These Days on TheTube' | Sailor's Log No. 22.09S.01

I won't lie. I definitely stream more movies and episodic series than I'd like to admit. Nevertheless, I don't watch everything, and I certainly do not watch titles simply because it was recommended or is a "certifiable" hit. I watch what I want to watch, nothing more, nothing less. I can't honestly say what makes me decide that I want to watch something. Sometimes it's because of the actors involved, and sometimes it's because I heard about the premise and am intrigued. About half the shows we start, we do not finish, either because it was so blah that we forgot we were watching it or because we couldn't get through the first episode. 

Movies are an entirely different beast about which this is not, at this time. Although, I will mention a few movies throughout this writing. 

My point is that I've never really been one to talk too much about cultural commodities because that's stupid and generally speaking, of little to no interest to me, but I love me some gossip, and I'm petty as shit. So, I suppose the dawning has dawned on me that I ought to talk about the shows that we (the bodybuddy/lifemate and I, cause we watch everything together, with but one exception) consume. I will undoubtedly forget one or more of them, and I will probably refrain from divulging the entire list out of shame, but for the most part, I've decided to comment on the shows we're currently watching &or do watch but they are not in season at this time. 

Alrighty, here we go! Spoilers ahead, cause I'm pretty sure I'm just gonna say whatever I want, so if you're interested in any of these shows, don't read this post. The shows are in no particular order, and I don't have something to say about all of the shows we're currently watching, and so, I'll end the post with the shows we watch but about which I have little to say. 

[DISCLAIMER]: Yea, the bodybuddy/lifemate and I do not financially support any of the shit we watch. Read this how you will. We financially supported our entertainment consumption in the past by purchasing IMAX 3D tickets for the entirety of Phases 2 & 3 of the MCU, and we will continue to do so in the future when we finally make our return to Seoul, cause if you haven't seen an IMAX 3D movie in Seoul, in the middle of the night, you haven't lived. Fact. 


I'm starting here because we finished the first season most recently. This is one of the shows that we forgot that we were watching, and so, we pretty much binged the thing in two or three sittings. The premise intrigued me from the get-go: the wife of a billionaire gets dumped, but (without a prenup? i'm hazy on this detail) she inherits (there's probably a different word for "getting" money from a divorce, yes? if there is, what is it?) half of her now-ex hubby's fortune and walks away a billionaire herself. 

Molly Wells, the wife, had been living a lavish life of luxury and had no qualms about her lifestyle until she is thrust into the world of the "normal" inside the office of her own philanthropic 501(c)(3). 

The reason why I wanted to watch this show is because of Joel Kim Booster. As a fellow Korean Adoptee, I find my responsibility to support all of his endeavors as my own, and so, I'm low-key obsessed with him.

The reason why we routinely forgot we were watching the show was because it's just a bit ... beyond the scope of what I'd consider relatable. 

Sure, it's great that a mixed female (Maya Rudolph) with an ambiguous nature to her ethnicity/race leads the show by being the person who depicts a billionaire, but I have some serious issues with the stereotypical way that the first season ended. We were on Molly Wells' journey of self-discovery, and then, at the end of the season, Wells decides that she's going to give away all of her fortune.

And then she says something that's true, for HER, but that ought not be supported as an idea. Wells, when taking the stage at the season's cumulative event, speaks to the oddity of a room full of billionaires blowing hot air about solving the world's problems. And then she says something to the effect of, "Billionaires should not exist." Here's what I believe she should have said instead, "Billionaires like me, should not exist. Nobody who has not created anything, like myself, because I 'inherited' my billions from my husband who did the creating, should go to sleep at night and wake up billions of dollars richer." 

Absolutely, there should be billionaires on this planet. There should be billionaires because there are billions of people and thus, problems are of a billion-dollar scale. It's simple math. The problem is that there should not exist the types of billionaires who have solely traded on the stock markets, making fortunes off a system that has always been rigged toward those who already have the most. 

The issue that I take with Wells' comment on the show is that she points the finger at billionaires themselves, when the problem is Capitalism-As-Usual. Capitalism is what produced Molly Wells, the Billionaire. Some people, on the other hand, men and women alike, have created billion-dollar solutions &or created a solution that helps billions of people. These are the people who are billionaires and deserve to be so. Does this mean that they should be propped up and worshiped? Of course not.  

The fact that the problem-solving billionaires exist is not a problem. The fact that Molly Wells-type billionaires exist is a massive problem. 

It's a shame that the show insisted on diminishing Molly Wells as opposed to empowering her. Like seriously, how fucking fem stereotypical is it that some woman, flush with cash, succumbs to the responsibility to give away all her money? It's so lame. If the show were to empower Wells, an uber-rich female, what they would have done is make her realize how much power her billions affords her, and instead of having her give away her power, she'd be empowered to legitimize her wealth by creating something new. 

What the show presents us with, instead, is Molly Wells as an impostor, suffering from impostor syndrome and thus, succumbing to the noise that she somehow does not deserve her wealth. And so, she makes it her mission to give it away. L-A-M-E. Lame. 

I do not wish to tune into the second season, but I must because of Booster, and so, I'm going to be forced to see how they unfold the dismantling of Wells' fem power. Lame.

Lower Decks

I'm not gonna lie, I find Mariner extremely annoying, but I also find her leading the show somewhat refreshing. Assertive females are typically always seen as annoying, so there's no groundbreaking here. The difference with the Mariner-type assertiveness is that she's a straight-up Nepo Baby, and she's treated as such. Mariner is on a long leash due to the fact that the Captain is her mother. It's fun and groundbreaking because Mariner and her mother are Globeaux. The dynamic subverts expectations, and this is what I enjoy about the show. The decisions the show makes about representation and character exploration are beyond the trifles of Earth's racism, etc. Every character on the Cerritos represents diversity. There is no "normal" being. 

I appreciate this greatly.

And as an aside, we check out the DVDs (technically they're Blu-Ray, but who says "Blu-Ray"? who ever said, "Blu-Ray" colloquially?) from our local library, and we were on a hold list behind nine other borrowers. In total, we waited about three weeks before we finally came up as the next borrowers. 

The Rings of Power

Okay. Everyone breathe and calm the fuck down! Like seriously, I do NOT understand all of the outcry, hubbub and nonsensical ramblings of the hoi polloi. I legit do not understand. All I know is that I absolutely was NOT going to watch this dumb-ass fucking lame attempt at bringing more Tolkien to life. I fucking hate Jeff Balls-Face. I had zero intention of supporting such a fucking ass wipe of thing. 

And then, after being subjected to a trailer or two, I gave the first episode a chance. 

I'm not gonna lie. I liked the first episode. It made me want to watch, or at least see, more. It was a smart decision making Galadriel one badass bitch. They took a gamble, and so far, it seems like it's working. And I bet they've captured a lot of women, while, obviously, losing the misogynists, but this was to be expected.  

The CG is okay. It's obviously not as bad as She-Hulk, because it's set in the fantastic, everything can kinda glow "wrongly." In short, The Rings can get away with the nuance of CGI; She-Hulk cannot because Walters exists in a world that we know, for ourselves, as flesh-and-blood humans. 

When I think of the Galadriel of Jackson's interpretation of The Lord of the Rings, it's believable that the show's interpretation of her is so fucking badass. She's so calm in LOTR because she's seen everything, not only psychically in her mind, but in her long life. And now, we're getting the opportunity to see all of the things that she's seen, and we know she does not die during any of this waging of war against evil. 

The other characters are cool, too, because we do, finally, get to see the diversity of Middle Earth, a place where Hobbits can somehow exist, but melanated humans, cannot? It's fucking cray the sorta shit I'm reading about how white, privileged, misogynistic men feel about the show. With Elon Musk leading the witch hunt against the rise of female power through the diminishing of the white, privileged, misogynistic men's definition of maleness being equated with bestness, the show is a triumph. It's making all of the right people angry. It's hitting a nerve. And in today's society, with the likes of celebrities being able to make cultural waves with a tweet, it's marvelous to see a show rile the patriarchy in such a pointed, specific, misogynistic way. 

To quote Chris Pine's James T. Kirk (yea, get off me about how the movies are stupid, I happened to enjoy them quite a lot, and they made way for me to eventually watch and appreciate the show, so fuck off!), "Maybe I love it." 

She-Hulk: Attorney At Law 

I'm gonna lie. I was so excited to watch this show and waited, with bated breath, for the premiere. 

Basically, the bodybuddy/lifemate just put it on one day, and I was like, dammit. 

Overall, I think the show is stupid. I think all of Marvel is a preposterous symbol of hyper-consumerism, and yet, I've seen everything. I fucking hate Disney, but this is not about that. The reason why I have a love/hate relationship with everything Marvel is because they have such enormous, ungodly budgets to make consumables. It's gross. But they use those budgets well and make some seriously entertaining shit, and the long saga of building out the MCU is a feat that I can't help but stay tuned into, cause, like, it's awesome. 

And so, we've arrived at She-Hulk, the newest installment of Phase 4.

As aforementioned, the CGI is lacking. It's mediocre at best, and like stated above, it's because of the issue of inserting a fake character into a "real" setting. The bodybuddy/lifemate made the argument that LOKI's CGI was bomb, but I made the argument that it was a much easier feat as all of the characters were "real" and they were placed into a CGI setting. From my vantage point (knowing nothing about computer animation), it seems like putting a fake character into a real setting is much more difficult than putting real characters into fake settings. But what do I know. 

And so, for me, the CG is nearly intolerable. 

But since I can sit through such short, trite episodes, it hasn't been completely intolerable, and thus, I've been watching the show, and now I understand not only what the point of She-Hulk even is, but also, I understand that she's pretty awesome. 

First things first, I thoroughly enjoy that Jennifer Walters does not suffer from impostor syndrome because she is not an impostor. This is not her struggle, thank Gao! How lame would that be? Hint: If you suffer from Impostor Syndrome, it's because you're an impostor, and you know it, either because your daddy bought you your career (see Taylor Swift) or because you know that YouTube success is no legitimate measure of your intelligence (see Jenn Im). Duh. Second, I thoroughly enjoy that She-Hulk is intimidating. Third, I thoroughly do not enjoy that She-Hulk had to diminish herself when confronted by her former boss, at his bequest, because she intimidated him in her full glory, and then he fired her ass. Lame. 

I hate the show because it's a non-stop reminder of what it's like to be a woman in a man's world. I enjoy the show because I can vicariously live through She-Hulk and trample the fuck outta any man who gets in my way. And it's fun to see the other characters outside of the shoot-em-up gang. It's just fun. And apparently, the patriarchy does not like fun, cause like, to the misogynistic, privileged, white men the MCU is SERIOUS STUFF! 

The Real Housewives of Dubai

I love me some Chanel Ayan. I haven't been able to get enough of her ever since she uttered the words at Caroline Brooks, "Look at your face, and look at my face." Classic. 

Honestly, I was never into the franchise, cause I just didn't ever really get it. And then, I heard about the international installment and heard that the cast would be diverse, and from the looks of it, I was hooked to give it a try. And then, I read this book, and it convinced me that the franchise does more than one would think, culturally. It represents more than one would think, and the first thing I think is that the show focuses on women, females. Like, what do women do all day? What does feminine mean? The societal pressures put on women are forefront. It's pretty cool. 

And as a Project Runway viewer, I couldn't help but be peaked with interest during that Real House Wives reunion challenge in the last season. Now, as a viewer of my very first location, I totally understand the reunion, and I'm all about that pettiness. Yes, ma'am. 

And now I'm exhausted, and really, like I said, care too little about cultural commodities to spend this much time talking about them (but this is a lie, cause I thoroughly enjoy cultural commodities, especially celebrity gossip; I'm just being lazy cause I can), and so, we move to the Listicle of the other shit I watch, which includes but is not limited to:

Shows I am watching and like but have nothing of substance to comment 

Never Have I Ever — This is obviously not a show that's for me as the protagonist is in high school, nevertheless, I find the show to be highly entertaining, and really, Mindy Kaling can do no wrong, in my book, and so, I find her mission to create as much content wherein her children can see themselves represented the way that Kaling (one imagines) imagines her children ought to be represented, as people with all the same issues/problems as bland old vanilla people, commendable.

Money Heist — A Korean adaptation of some Swedish book?

Modern Family — Yea, I know, it's like off the air. 

The Price is Right: The Barker Era — So, yea, we have a Roku-enabled TV, not because we love Roku so much as it was the TV at the right price at the right time, and honestly, the whole "Live TV" is pretty awesome, cause there's a channel that plays The Price is Right 24/7. But I gotta tell you, Bob is one misogynistic perv. Like seriously, a perv, and like so totally misogynistic, probably sprinkled with a bit of preference for those who are straight and bland. I only started tuning into Roku's "Live TV" a few weeks ago, but it's fun to see what constituted "hot items" back in the early '80s.   

Shows I watch and like but that are out of season, at this time, for which I am excitedly awaiting, etc.

Sex Lives of College Girls — see Never Have I Ever, except that the protagonists are in college instead of high school, but still much too young for me to relate to, healthily; nevertheless, see above.

Strange New Worlds  — Seriously, Pike's hair. Like seriously, Pike's hair. His hair. 

Righteous Gemstones — Thank you, Danny McBride. Thank you.

Succession — To say I'm obsessed is an understatement. I will be Logan Roy someday, and I will have a succession problem, like they all do. 

Billions — The billionaire do-gooder? Bah! We'll see. 

Severance — If you haven't seen it already, or you have seen it and don't get it, it's not for you, and that's okay. There are other, less-meaningful shows for you to digest, mindlessly ;) no worries. 

Project Runway — Cause I've always watched Proj-Way, and it's crazy to watch older episodes (another dedicated channel on Roku "Live TV") wherein the contestants do their work in a terrifyingly lit, windowless basement. Bravo to whomever made the executive decision to give the contestants a space wherein they may find true creativity. Just shows that Tim and Heidi never really cared about the contestants, which is obvious when considering how much the show has changed since the re-structuring of the Proj-Way asset. 

Marvel's Streaming Seasons Two (of everything) and all of Marvel's Phase Four — I can't even pretend like I'm not gonna consume all of it. 

And I definitely know that I'm missing something, but this is so wholly unimportant that I really don't care, sorry-not sorry. 

The End.


02 September 2022

In the Embers, n/Now., We Glow. | In Good Company w/ Jazmine Sullivan, Oh! Stephco, &Megan Thee Stallion

 re Jazmine Sullivan 

I'm obviously not breaking any news here when I say that I fucking love Jazmine Sullivan, and yes, I am late to the game, but at least I did know of her before her Grammy (and she was robbed!, I say, robbed!), so there's that. 

My point is simply that my love for Sullivan stems from her ability to articulate the relationship that women have to their pussies. I identify greatly with the way that she expresses her own opinion of her own pussy, and I am truly so grateful. She even goes beyond what I have been able to do for myself (I think I've always had a positive relationship with my pussy, cause, well, I've not had any "problems," etc., so what else is a fem to think?) by truly making me feel deep feels for my pussy, a deep appreciation for her and all she does, especially while menstruating (like I am now, in great need of Sullivan's Pussy Power). 

Here are a few go-to lines that make me feel especially proud of my puss:

"That's why he gets all my time, 'cause he put it down" 

Heaux Tales "Put It Down"

"That money keeps that pussy wet"

Heaux Tales "Price Tags"

"I got the best pussy in the world" ...

"Great pussy is the best flex"

Heaux Tales, Mo’ Tales: The Deluxe "BPW"

I hope these lines help to bring some Pussy Power into your life, if they haven't already ;)

re Oh! Stephco

I watched a new video of hers, recently, and she said something that I've been wanting to say for quite some time now, but I haven't taken the opportunity to say it out loud because I've been working on working the words into the next installment of my fiction, nevertheless, Oh! Stephco has spoken the words out loud, and her saying them (along with me hearing them) has made me introspective about why I haven't said it out loud, yet. And I'm not saying that these words are anything that hasn't been said before, no. These are not words that have yet to ever be spoken. In fact, I've come to see them as a kinda cliche, within circles wherein this type of feeling is felt.

I'll keep you in suspense, no longer:

"I feel like I've always had to make space for other people."

Oh! Stephco "Meghan Markle Didn't Like Being Treated 'As a Black Woman.' I Wonder Why?"

re Megan Thee Stallion

Billionaire aspirations are becoming apparent. And I'd bet, she gets there faster than anyone else in history, not as in being the youngest ever, but in her acquisition of wealth by her age/wealth timeline. 

Get it, Thee!

And hopefully, I'll see all yuhs on "The Other Side." 

2022 AUGUST Reads | Books 43-51/80

2022 AUGUST Month Goal: 9/9

Year Goal: 51/80

1. Yoke: My Yoga of Self-Acceptance by Jessamyn Stanley

Nonfiction | 613.7046 STA | 2021 | 208 pages

2.  Touch: The Science of Hand, Heart and Mind by David J. Linden

Nonfiction | 612.88 LIN | 2015 | 262 pages

3. The House of Rust by Khadija Abdalla Bajaber 

Fiction Bajaber, K.A. | 2021 | 272 pages

4. Nanoscale: Visualizing an Invisible World by Kenneth S. Deffeyes

Nonfiction | 541.24 DEF | 2009 | 133 pages

5. Archer by Shruti Swamy

Fiction Swamy, S. | 2021 | 304 pages 

6. Hi, I'm an Atheist by David D. McAfee

Nonfiction | 211.8 MCA | 2021 | 192 pages 

7. The Little Book of Hermetic Principles by Amber D. Browne

Nonfiction | 135.45 BRO | 2022 | 144 pages 

8. Activities of Daily Living by Lisa Hsiao Chen

Fiction Chen, L.N. | 2022 | 352 pages 

9. Heretics!: The Wondrous (and Dangerous) Beginnings of Modern Philosophy by Steven Nadler and Ben Nadler

Graphic Novel | 190.9 NAD | 2017 | 184 pages  

&In Images

Notes & Errata

This was the first month this year, since January!, that I completed my monthly goal. 
Pat, pat, on the back, back. 


26 August 2022

Overcoming Whiteness* | In Good Company w/ Meghan Markle, Joe Biden, &Annie Leibovitz

Where competency fails,

one's vanity prevails.

re Meghan Markle

What kind of woman, who considers herself ambitious, does not understand that to be an ambitious woman is a frown-able offense? I know, a woman who is not actually all that ambitious. 

Fact. Every little girl who is even remotely ambitious-adjacent understands that this is a bad thing. You know how she knows this? Well, quite frankly, because everyone around her calls her "Bossy," not a Bad Ass Boss ... Boss-y ... as if the girl is attempting to be a Bad Ass Boss, but this is unacceptable, and so, she is the devalued, feminized version with the -y added to it, which means it's "Girl-y." And to be "girly" is inherently valueless, except when in the case when that girl has a womb, then that womb is the property of the man who buys her, with a pet rock or a dowry; it's all the same. But I digress. 

My point is that Meghan Markle is not ambitious, not intellectually or in any way that threatens society at large. This is why she never knew that being an ambitious female was seen as unbecoming. Also, I feel like it's fairly well known that intelligent, outspoken women of history were put to death for their intellect. The women who were just social problems within gossip spheres posed no real threat until people started to listen to them, which was rarely, unless you wanted to be put to death. Thus, one assumes that it is not really her "ambition" (which I am generally requiring to be that of an intellectual nature, which I entirely understand to be unfair) that rubs people the wrong way. 

Being a social climber is ambitious. I'll give her that, but it's not the kind of ambition that creates an archetype out of a woman, except, I guess it does cause the Golddigger to exist, etc., but the archetype that Markle seemingly attempts to outline about the "ambitious woman" is one that is seemingly lost on her. 

Obviously, I didn't listen to the podcast episode because I do not listen to podcasts, nor do I support the streaming service of her podcast. I did, however, get a general understanding of the general aspects of the episode, and honestly, I only care in a very general sense. What I know is that the episode does not educate people on how to deal with embodying this "distasteful" archetype of the "ambitious female," etc. An episode to this effect would be something that I'd consider, helpful, feminist, educating. Instead, the episode seemed to focus on Markle's own experience of being labelled an "ambitious woman," which, as I've outlined, she is not. Sure, she's become ambitious, but this is not the same thing as being ambitious. 

A label is not an archetype. 

Historically, woman and ambition do not go hand-in-hand, and I can't seem to wrap my mind around the fact that Markle supposedly did not know this until entering a royal family. And thus, I do not believe her, which means that I do not trust her, which means that everything she says seems like a lie. She supposedly has a college degree. And she's a feminist. There are just too many examples like this wherein she cannot claim to have "not known," because it means that she's stupid.

And then I take a deep breath and remind myself that I only ever come across Markle in the entertainment section of my newsfeed(s), where she belongs, with Joe Rogan and Kim Kardashian. 

We don't scrutinize the latter because Rogan is a self-proclaimed idiot, and Kardashian only invites scrutiny of her vanity, cause, let's be serious, in this instance, brains and beauty have not coalesced, not that they can't coalesce, in fact, I'd argue that more often than not, the beauties among us are also well-endowed of mind; it's all symmetry. 

We scrutinize Markle because she proclaims to do good. She's a do-gooder, and we do not accept do-gooders who are not good doers. Take Ellen DeGeneres for example. Thus, Markle welcomes the scrutiny because she wants to be the ultimate good doer. And what's the problem, here? I don't understand why everyone has such a problem with Markle not only wanting and thus pursuing what she wants but also, that she invites scrutiny because she outright proclaims that she intends to do good. 

This is why Markle is impossible to tolerate. It's the thing that everyone refuses to say out loud. Markle is behaving like a White woman, because she is one, but she looks not-white. Thus, she's inherently a fraud. 

So sure, do I wish that Markle were everything that I want her to be? Of course. Am I upset that she's not doing more? Yea, duh. But do I understand the life that she's chosen to live? Absolutely. It's not a life that I would wish upon anyone, but at the end of the day, she's doing it, she's continuing to put herself out there in the name of do-goodery. According to them (the Sussexes, as a unit), their intentions are good. To us, their intentions could be anything. In the end, nobody's opinion of them affects them on a day-to-day, personal level. They're going out there trying their best to make as much money as possible so that they can maintain their social status as rich people who, thusly, ought to influence us on what to buy and how to think. "Doing Good" is merely their brand. Don't get it twisted.

They were never any different from the Kardashians and the Rogans of the world. They just seemed as if they were, but so far, they've been largely unable to launch their "intellectual" properties out of the entertainment tab. 

Finally, as an aside, I read that she shared some horrifying story about how the space heater in her son's makeshift nursery caught on fire, while he was not in the room. The incident shook her so much that she was then upset by the obligation she had to attend after being so shaken by her son being unharmed. This is some seriously whaack white-woman entitlement, here. But, I guess she is the one who married the prince of a historically racist, elitist, entitled, genocidal family, for fuck's sake. If that doesn't show you everything you need to know about how White she is, I don't know what will. Like seriously. If I were allowed to take time off from my obligations every time something almost happened, I'd never go anywhere, nor would I get anything done. If I were shook by the mere possibility that something terrible, almost might-could've happened, how would I live my life?  

Everyone talks about the historically hideous nature of the one-drop fallacy, wherein one drop of Black would "ruin" the whiteness of White, but what about its reverse? What about that one drop of White ruining Every Person, Place and/or Thing. If Markle could be less myopic and speak to the archetypes from a larger vantage point that includes more than just herself, it's possible that she might be able to overcome her whiteness.   

re Joe Biden

Leave it to a bunch of white elitists to forgive $10K of student loan debt that was taken on by a bunch of ... white elitists. 

The argument, I guess, is that it's an amount that will help basically no one. If you're making $80-125K and you can't afford to pay back your student loans, it's not because your loans are forcing you to pay too much. It's because a) your expenses are too high and b) you're an idiot. If you're making less than $80K and you can't afford your loans, it's because you don't know how to adjust your payments to match your income. The Dems are so out of touch that they don't even know that there are student loan borrowers who do not even make $50K. This "bailout" is not supposed to bring relief to those who are simply over-spending idiots. This relief is supposed to (in my book) forgive loans to those who graduated from college and entered the workforce to an employment market with zero opportunity for them. Those who are working hourly with a college degree, perhaps even two degrees. 

For these student loan borrowers, $10K is not enough. But how could you possibly know that if you assume that everyone who graduated from college has some $125K+ salary. And, like I said, if you are one of those who graduated, make over a measly $80K and still cannot afford your student loans, you're the idiot. 

re Annie Leibovitz 

I mean, it's more than possible that Leibovitz has never been any good at photographing people. Being white in white America helps to make the incompetent whites seem less so (and don't fucking come at me about how white Jews aren't white).  

*don't come at me about how racist this is. I know how racist this is. I was raised by two white people. I know what Overcoming Whiteness means. 

15 August 2022

Quote-Unquote Dancer—A Personal History

I guess the fact that I am an adult who does not identify as a dancer makes me sad. 

The sadness is most likely due to the fact that I'd identified as a dancer for, what felt like, the majority of my life. When I was little, I was enrolled in all sorts of dance, gymnastics, jump rope types of classes and activities. By the time I was in second grade, I was a pre-competitive gymnast and dicked around as a ballerina, dancing as a ginger snap for the local ballet company's production of The Nutcracker, etc. And I had to make a decision between ballet or gymnastics, because I was advancing in both, but doing both was unsustainable at the level that I was slowly creeping toward. And so I quit the tights and embraced the shorty-shorts. I never became a competitive gymnast, but I did compete, recreationally, until I strongly considered quitting after Meet Season at the end of my freshman year of high school. 

During the summer, I informed my parents that I wanted to quit gymnastics, cause, quite frankly, I was tired of being in pain. Between ankle sprains that have left my ankles so stretched out that I roll them, constantly, and feel no pain, the tennis elbow, hyper-extended elbows, ripped palms, and general aches and pains from being a gymnast, I was over it. My adopted parents responded by telling me that I could quit, but I couldn't do nothing. And so, my adopted mom enrolled me in some volleyball club during the summer while gymnastics classes were on hiatus until school started again in the fall. 

I hate volleyball. 

Let's just put it that way. I was plenty good at it, but it was so boring I thought I was going to die from boredom. No offense to volleyball players/athletes. They're fucking hardcore. This is no slight to them or the sport; volleyball simply is not for me. So, then, gymnastics started up again, but I only attended classes with the intent to never compete again. Meanwhile, my adopted mom signed me up for an adult jazz class at her gym with a dance instructor she'd known for years. And I loved it. And I was naturally good at it from the get go due to the lifelong training of using my body through gymnastics. And so, by the spring of my sophomore year, I had finally quit gymnastics and was enrolled in a ballet class, two days a week, and a jazz class two days a week. By the fall of my junior year, I was dancing six days a week, up and down the valley from whence I came, advancing quickly, and then I went off to college with hopes of continuing to dance for fun. 

At Baylor University, I enrolled in a ballet class as my physical education type credits. It was droll and boring, cause it was academic, literally. We hardly danced at all. But that class introduced me to the other ballet dancers on campus, and they also introduced me to the Baylor Dance Company. During spring semester of my freshman year, I auditioned for some theater major's thesis. Apparently, theater majors put on a theater production in order to graduate, and one of those majors was choreographing a dance number. I got a part and met even more dancers. And so, I feel as though I spent most of my time with the fellow dancers I met on campus. It was my main social outlet. Sophomore year was a bit dramatic as a friend of mine had lured me to a different dance company, a "christian" company, with exactly five people. I didn't like it, obviously, but as a "good christian girl," I stuck it out until I couldn't, and then I gave it my all for the Baylor Dance Company. By the end of my junior year, I was the historian and had choreographed a number of pieces for our end-of-year show. But I was falling into a deep depression and wanted to leave Baylor. Thus, I auditioned for the BFA dance program at the University of Texas (Austin, duh), cause I had a friend who transferred there, whom I met at Baylor. I got in, but then I needed something else, entirely. Yes, photos, videos and documents exist of all of this.

And then I dropped out of college, altogether, didn't apply to UT, and left Baylor, never to return. 

Over the summer, my adopted dad informed me that it was fine that I was taking a break, but I couldn't do nothing. Luckily, my former ballet teacher heard I was in a predicament and informed me of an opportunity in Syracuse, New York, with another "christian" ballet company. Even though I knew that I no longer identified as a "christian," I hadn't really broken the news to anyone, cause my entire upbringing and social circle is ALL CHRISTIAN! Basically, I mean, I think there are some who are not really "christian," etc., but this is not about that. And so, like a "good christian," I lived as a hypocrite, posing as a "christian" within a "christian" ballet company. To be fair, I really thought I didn't have much else in the way of options, cause there was no way in fucking fuck that I was going to live at home all year. 

And then, after a year of torturing my soul (and moonlighting at night clubs all over the city, "dancing" my ass off on the dance floor), I had completed the trainee program to become a full member, and I left to go back to school. 

Back in Colorado, attending the University of Colorado (Boulder, duh, but ugh, I would've thrown up all over you back in high school if you told me that I ended up at CU! Lame!), I would run three or four times a week and danced on Saturday mornings at an adult dance class hosted by a local ballet company called something like Lemon Cheesecake? I can't remember, and I legit am not going to Bing it rn. The class was full of mostly the elderly, but they were really friendly to me (read, unintimidated by my "skill," which was severely lacking at the time) and expressed their delight that I was joining them. 

After graduating, the bodybuddy/lifemate and I moved to Denver, where we mostly worked out at 24-Hour Fitness. The one we went toalways after midnight cause, imho, it's always awesome to move through this world when it's like you're the only ones occupying the planet—had a studio space, and so, I would move from time to time, but I was so out of dance shape by that point that it would always make me depressed to see how not-awesome I had become. And so, I bought a punch card for a studio nearby, and danced a few times over the course of a few years. Lame. I was strong, don't get me wrong. We worked out like fiends in those days. And then we packed up and expatriated to Seoul. 

In Seoul, I morphed into a yogi, because, frankly, I was a bit ashamed of how much I felt like I had lost as a dancer. Plus, I was going through figuratively heavier identity issues at that time. My body did not look good dancing, and I was literally heavy. But by the time we left Seoul (to return, no worries), I was aching for a dance class, and so, when we arrived in Auckland, New Zealand, I signed up for one, and it was a huge disappointment. So, I tried another class, and it was exactly what I needed. And then, when we arrived in Seattle, I had returned to a concerted yoga effort. And yoga was my main body practice again. 

Until I kept on wrecking my shoulders/neck from not-strenuous postures. 

I could easily understand tweaking my neck &or shoulder doing some contortionist type posture, but I never actually hurt myself doing the crazy stuff. I tweaked my neck/shoulder twice doing a simple forward fold, and after the second tweak, only about six weeks ago, I quit yoga cold turkey. There's something about yoga that just does not jibe with my body (or perhaps it has something to do with white yoga practitioners who have ruined the whole endeavor). Obviously, I still "practice yoga," as I am a supporter of the meditative/mindfulness aspects of the practice, and so, yes, I still practice yoga, but I no longer attempt to keep up with white American yoga. Instead, I have returned to a ballet practice for my body. Ballet has always been very meditative for me, as it demands a lot of mental focus to accomplish, and so, practicing ballet is also a yoga practice, which I must admit, is awesome.  

Currently, the bodybuddy/lifemate and I have access to a private-ish gym in our apartment building, and like the nocturnal beings that we are—as of late—we very muchly enjoy utilizing the space in the dead of night when we know we'll be alone. It's great. The space is spacious enough that I have set up an area where I can do both some barre work and a little center movement. I love it. 

And soon, I will identify as a dancer, once again. It's been a long, slow process of building back ballet muscles, because I also have a bum left knee. During the summer between junior and senior years of high school, while performing at an end-of-intensive "showcase" during a summer ballet intensive I was attending at a "christian" ballet company in Jackson, Mississippi, I dislocated my knee, on stage, for all the world to see, and I "made a scene" as a veterinarian in the audience came up on stage and pop my knee back in place and dragged me off stage. After an excruciating plane ride home, I had my left patella tendon screwed back onto my left shin with two titanium screws. Also, as a side note, not a single person from that fucking "christian" ballet company ever called to check on me. I don't want to call it racism, but ... if the shoe fits. 

Thus, I spent the fall semester of my high school senior year in a straight-leg brace, attending physical therapy multiple times a week, dancing to get back in dancing shape (I danced in The Nutcracker that December and then went back into surgery because my scar tissue had grown so much that I couldn't bend my knee all the way, and nobody wanted to forced it to bend while I was conscious), and striving to graduate first in my class (I didn't graduate first, but I won all the scholarships). Obviously, the knee is great these days. I danced pre-professionally for an entire year after the knee, and to this day, I run and exercise regularly. And so, I do not have concerns about the knee, I just know that I must not push it, and that I have to do it right, which means doing the work, at the barre, to get my legs and feet back. As all of my dance teachers have told me, there's only one way to build a ballet/dance body and that is by dancing, because there's nothing else that can use all the muscles you need in exactly the way that you need them. 

So, I'm doing the work, and I've decided to document my process over time.

Someday, I might even choreograph a little one-minute piece that I can actually do from start to finish without dying. In the meantime, here are some more dance vids of the ilk I've expressed above. 

Until next time.    

In Two Parts (cause that's where we are now :) | Part I

Part II