Getting Pissy at Celebreties for Politics

 Photo by Tim Marshall on Unsplash

Let's start out with saying I don't personally believe that celebrities should be role models, anyway. But that's technically a separate issue.

But lately I've been mulling about why people get so mad about celebrities being political, and I think I have it. 

The response is often "Their job is just to act/sing/play sports etc!!!"

Which, okay, fine. Unless they are refusing to say their scripted lines or sing the songs they are being paid for, however, that has nothing to do with what they say into a microphone or camera (that we as society collectively shove in their face as a result of their profession).

What people are essentially saying is, "THEY ARE NOT SUPPOSED TO BE A PERSON! They are not worthy of independent thought! Their sole function is to entertain me, and they have no worth outside of their ability to please me."

Which is a scary as fuck thing to say.

It does what people are doing all over the place in America, which is ascribing humanity based on something other than being a human.

Whether it is a celebrity dripping in diamonds and expensive clothes on a red carpet or destitute immigrant illegally crossing a border, we do not have the right to strip another human being of the title "human." We just fucking don't.

And if you want to sit there and preach at me that they did this bad thing- or, more and more lately, that they have the POTENTIAL to do this or that bad thing- look in the fucking mirror. Watch a fucking movie.

The good guys and bad guys do the SAME SHIT. 

Just on different teams. We may assign a higher morality to one side, but it's all humanity. And sometimes humanity is complete fucking garbage. But it's still humanity.

America can very easily become equivalent to Nazi Germany or current day North Korea. Because all three countries consist, and have always consisted of, humans.

Stick your fingers in your ears and sing "la la la la" all you want, but unless you step to be the absolute BEST of humanity, the worst can and easily will take over. 

And it won't be because they are "just" anything. It will be because of carelessness and hunger for power and it will all be possible because we allow people to say that other people aren't people just like us. It will be because "us" and "ours" are better than "them" and "theirs." And the reality is, we aren't.

And quick reminder to Christians- Jesus died for everyone. 

He didn't come for a specific race or country or political administration. Literally the entire damn world. So remember when you claim someone deserves something, you are literally doing it to a child of God. Whether that PERSON has accepted that or not, GOD LOVES THEM and JESUS DIED FOR THEM. And if that doesn't mean something to you, your religion is not soul-deep.

I'm not saying people who do bad things shouldn't be punished.

I'm saying- they are bad people. They are not inhumane, they are not separate from us.

They are simply the worst of what we could become, and ignoring that fact just gives them greater power and makes the best of humanity even more vulnerable.

Add It To My List: June 2018

  • Julie Roberts
    • Always looking for females to add to my I Love Tomatoes playlist, so when I came across a Julie Roberts duo I made a note to go look her up. Turns out, she is NOT a new artist because I totally remember seeing her songs on CMT while at my grandparent's house, which would have been at least a decade ago. Still love her, and I don't understand why she isn't more popular.
  • Give a moment or two to the angry middle-aged woman
    •  Wonderful post by Jana at Jana Says about the current political climate, specifically as someone who is Jewish. 
  • EXPERTS ON EXPERT: Wendy Mogel
    •  An episode of Dax Shepard's podcast, Arm Chair Expert, with Dr. Mogel who is an author and child psychologist. The overall messages included chilling the hell out and lowering expectations for both children and ourselves as parents. She comments how people act like the normal curve has disappeared- aka, MOST OF US ARE AVERAGE by the very definition of average so stop grading our kids and ourselves, which really spoke to me. Also I appreciated how she talked about becoming more religious and putting more Jewish practices into motion after becoming a parent and the value in those traditions and part of why they have carried on for so long (I am Christian, no Jewish affiliations in any way, just for the record and the sake of non-appropriation but some things make sense cross-culturally and even Dax who is an outspoken atheist could relate and find value in the discussion).
  • Shutterfly Photobooks
    • I used Shutterfly to make our adoption photobook- we had to do a book that described our life/family/home/hobbies/etc. I loved it so much and kind of got addicted...I since ordered two more and started on a third. My new goal is do one of these every year. I used to scrapbook but...this is so much easier guys! I will say, I think the hard covers, Storytelling style, and lay flat pages are worth the extra money. Shutterfly totally gets ya by sending coupon codes often, but I really do think it's worth it. 
  • Z-Grip Ballpoint Retractable Pen
    • I'm the kind of person who has strong opinions on pens. Felt tip pens are my favorite for the way they write, but they bleed through regular notebook paper so easily which makes them not the best for taking notes for class. I like colors but hate gel. These pens are super smooth and don't seem to clot up on the tips as badly and the color is very consistent, if that makes sense. I tried Papermate InkJoys because people just raved about them in my Bullet Journal groups, but ink didn't flow well and different letters had different was just buggy. I wished these were thicker because I'm a freak who loves thickness in pens, but they're the best I've found so far. 
  • No Boundaries Tank Top
    • So I can't find a link to the exact product, but I got these awesome tank tops to work out in at Walmart. They are plan, polyester+spandex material which kind of sounds awful but is so much better than anything cotton when the heat index is 90+. They do cling a little, but I'd rather just hug the mum-tum than have something loose that falls while I'm doing mountain climbers or something. They cost like 3-4$ and for the price you can't beat them. They weren't with the workout gear but totally work anyway.

What have you been loving lately?

Contact Etiquette for Large Organizations

I work at a fairly large organization, the kind that gets lots and lots of phone calls every day. I also used to work at a doctor's office where I also dealt with lots and lots of phone calls.

I have learned that most people do not understand the optimal route for actually getting returned contact.

Here's a few tips. Use them, or don't. But it would probably be beneficial to use them. And if it seems like most of them are common sense, it's because they are. Doesn't mean the world (and possibly you) doesn't need a reminder.

  1. Prepare. 
      • If you have a student ID, account number, error message code, etc- HAVE IT WRITTEN DOWN BEFORE YOU DIAL ANYTHING. You WILL be asked for this information. It is likely how they will identify your account and see what is really going on.  
      • Make sure you understand exactly what the problem is. Don't just see there is a problem and freak out and call the first number you can find/Google. This sets you up for disappointment and frustration.
      1.  Call the correct department.
          • Those main numbers with lots of options? They can feel like a waste. So does taking the time to actually read the email or statement to find what department you need. But you know what happens when you don't spend that little bit of time? You talk to a lot of people who don't know how to help you. You get mad, they get mad, and you are still going to get transferred. If you don't get transferred, you will be put on hold numerous times while they try to find someone who does know how to help you. At this point you are taking up valuable time from two different people. Meanwhile, the people who actually need the incorrect person you contacted are getting a busy signal or having to leave a voicemail. You're clogging the system, basically.
          1. Leave a voicemail. 
            • This may be one of the single most important things I can tell you. SO MANY PEOPLE call and complain "I've been calling all morning and no one has called me back." And then we look at the call log and yes, they have called 6 times in two hours. But they never left a message. No one is going to call you back without a detailed message saying who you are and WHY you are calling. 
          2. Shot-gunning clogs up the system.
            •  You call one office, don't get an answer, so you call another office. And another, and another. While you are doing this, 5 other people are doing it also. You know what that means? NO ONE IS AVAILABLE TO TALK TO YOU because they are talking to other people, who they probably aren't equipped to assist anyway (see previous point #2). 
            • Email seems harmless, but again it does the same thing. PersonWhoCanNotAssistYou must go find PersonWhoActuallyCanAssistYou, which wastes their time. SecondPersonWhoCanNotAssistYou also eventually goes to talk to PersonWhoActuallyCanAssistYou, so PersonWhoActuallyCanAssistYou can't assist the additional people who need them. Or, more likely, they have to go find PersonWhoCanActuallyAssistSomeoneElse to take care of the messages incorrectly left for them because other people did not follow points #1 & #2.
            • Call, and/or email, ONE person.
          3. YOU call for YOUR business.
            • Getting a parent or spouse or whoever to call for you almost certainly guarantees that you will either need multiple calls, either because they don't know all the needed information OR they don't have permission to actually do whatever you want done.

            Fake It Till You...Actually Are a Good Person?

             Photo by Asa Rodger on Unsplash

            A few weeks ago a friend from high school reached out to my husband. He and his fiance were moving to town and wanted help moving. I was supposed to go work out that night, so said "Cool, just please be done in time to pick up Babycakes from daycare since I can't." So, around 5ish. "No problem."

            Well, he messages me around the time to meet them that they are just now finished packing and heading this way- so the schedule will be about 3 hours off from what they originally stated.

            Y'all, I got super pissed. 

            Hubs reminded me that we have moved a LOT and it never goes smoothly. Which I complete agree with.

            BUT- I like to think I am the kind of person who wouldn't expect someone I barely talked to for 10 years to block out 2/3 of their day and provide physical labor without a deep gratitude and open communication.

            To be clear, they didn't even message him that they would be late. He saw them post on Facebook.

            This meant that he could pick up Babycakes but either take her to their house and hope the fiance could "baby-sit" while he helped move the heavy stuff or I could take Babycakes with me to workout. Now, I've done that before- but it's not great. If there is running, I basically can't, because toddlers have short legs and get distracted by everything.

            Also it meant I would have to feed her and bath her and miss out on the few hours a weekday I get to see my husband, which was an added energy expense I had not planned on.

            Hubs was all zen and it didn't bother him- but why would it? He didn't have to adjust the one fucking hour per week he gets to himself. 

            So, I was pissed. But I agreed because I do remember what it's like and it was the nice thing to do.

            That didn't stop me from having to complain a LOT about it first to work it out of my system, to which Hubs pointed out that I agreed to it so why was I acting like he was purposefully being a dick?

             And I had to ask, do you really have to have only good feelings about something for it to be a generous act? 

            Is "fake it till you make it" applicable in being a good person?

            Truthfully, I have been around people who did me "favors" but bitched about it and I really wished they just hadn't done the thing. But I wasn't bitching to these people- I was bitching to my husband, which IMO should be a safe space. I knew is was a good thing, but it didn't feel good right then. I had some incredibly selfish feelings that were partially related to the situation and partially related to a bunch of other internal shit.

             Is this hypocritical? How else do you do it? 

            Are there people out there who have literally zero issues putting others before themselves? 

            Because y'all, compared to most people I know, I complain way less. Like, I make it a point to avoid it or to avoid complaining about certain kinds of situations. But I also make it a point to go out of my way to express gratitude and respect people's time and that's what really pissed me off here. It was just expected that our day/night/who knows how long was infinitely available.

            I was over it by the time I finished my workout. Babycakes did fine during the workout. My group is super supportive and encouraging and always welcoming to kids. I was back to my happy place, and I was glad to have a husband who is willing to help others.

            But I would not have gotten there if I hadn't worked out that initial "Who the fuck do they think they are?" attitude. 

            So, what do you think? Is it the action or the attitude that matters? Or half & half? Can you be a good person and do nice things but still have to work out some shit, or am I just a terrible person?

            Current Thoughts: June 2018

            • How often are you supposed to apply lipstick? I really don't understand. It gets all over my coffee and water cups. I don't like wearing it out with my family because if I kiss Hubs or Babycakes it gets all over them. It feels silly to reapply mid-morning when no one is looking at me because I'm just sitting at my desk looking at a computer. I like wearing it, but not sure the proper amount.
            • Got a new diaper bag. Ain't even sorry- I used to love big purses, now I love diaper bags, obviously I'm a bag lady. I have very few vices, so I'm at peace with it. JuJuBe had a huge sale and I got a Be Right Back bookbag style bag for 60% off. It's GORGEOUS, I've already gotten so many compliments, and I love it. My BFF was great but it definitely felt stuffed to the max (tbf, I hate having to take things in/out of bags so I probably carry more than strictly necessary). I wanted just a touch more space so I could carry my BuJo or jackets in the winter or, if/when we get a foster child, an extra set of clothes/etc for multiple kids. It packs differently but I think I'm a fan- although  I've only had it about a week ;) 
            •  It appears my anxiety is reappearing. Not fully in the bad place yet, but the shadows are getting longer and closer. Hoping the fact that I am recognizing the warning signs is something positive?
            • Vitamins work! Gave blood & my iron was great, while it's usually just on the border.

            What's up with you lately?

            Show Us Your Books Link-Up: June 2018

            Time to talk books! Let's get right too it.

            Home to Harmony by Philip Gulley
            This was a cute book I found in a Little Free Library. It discusses a Quaker (I think) pastor in a small little town and some of the daily life that the townspeople deal with. It was wonderful quaint read that I didn't expect to love as much as I did.

            Safe Harbor by Luanne Rice
            This book was fine, for what it is. Although I spent the entire time thinking I had read it already, but I actually think I just read a really similar book which is not great. But overall it was fine. Slightly cheesy but a good beach read.

            Because We Are Bad: OCD and a Girl Lost in Thought by Lily Bailey
            I highly enjoyed this book. It is told by a young woman and chronicles her journey with OCD. It was fascinating to see firsthand the way someone reacts to a disorder and diagnosis and treatment. I especially appreciated the way she talks about her OCD not being the way it is stereotypically presented and how that was confusing to her and later to others.

            Daisy in Chains by Sharon J. Bolton
            This was probably my favorite of the month, tied with Because We Are Bad.  I kind of guessed the ending but only like 50% of it, and not until fairly close to the end.

            The Last Mrs. Parrish by Liv Constantine
            This book felt like I was reading a Lifetime movie. It was told from two different perspectives, and truly I found the second half of the book much more interesting. I had an idea of what the second half would be, but not the last few chapters. Some parts were really good and others were super simplistic. It was meh at best.

            What have you been reading this month?
            Link-up & share! 

            Life According to Steph

            Dealing with My Anxiety

            So...I've started feeling anxious again.

            I don't really know why.

            Maybe it's hubby's new job, which is great but has thrown off our routine- and routines are basically my lifeblood now. It's how I cope, and I am not doing well with revamping them.

            Maybe it is my lack of sleep...or maybe my lack of sleep is because of the anxiety. It's a "chicken or egg" conundrum.

            Maybe it's my birthday coming up? A stereotypical freak-out about being one year closer to 30?

            Maybe it's the fact that I've worked out a little more than normal, but not taking the time to stretch/etc properly? (although working out is kind of addicting right now also and feels like it might be the only thing keeping me from slipping all the way into the shadows)

            I tried looking up anti-anxiety techniques, but most of the ones I can find are for panic attacks specifically which is not really what I experience. It's more of a creeping feeling, but last time it lead to an anxiety attack after a few months so I really want to find a way to deal with it before I get to that point.

            Anyway...that's where I am lately.