What is Appropriate

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The grating, sandpaper sensations flow from Mark’s teeth through to his jaw and up into his brain. He cannot remember the last time he was so angry and if it were up to him he would fire that mouthy little bitch right now but these days his lawyer would be all over him for it. He remembers when all he needed Ian for was to go over contracts, now he actually has to listen to his advice about HR decisions because heaven forbid people understand what it means to be an employee who works for someone else. This is his store, he shouldn’t have to answer to anyone else. Continue reading

What Do You Have To Offer?

pearly gates

Atheism has a problem. Our loudest voices (I refuse to call them leaders, and many would deny that title, and a few of those even believe it when they do so) have been behaving in a disgusting fashion. From holding one theistic belief system as inherently worse than others despite plenty of evidence within and without otherwise to engaging in at best sleazy and at worst oppressive and criminal behavior, but that is not the problem. No our problem is a smug dismissal of what we know to be the reasons people cling to religion. We poke fun, attempting to paint the faithful as stupid for holding out hope for the next world when so much needs fixing right here. I think my friend, Jay Branscomb (the fellow who started the ball rolling on those hilarious Steven Speilberg-Triceratops memes) put it best. Continue reading

Can’t Quite Put My Finger On It… Oh Wait, Yes I Can

affleck-maher

From the outset I want to be honest and note that I did not watch the “discussion” Ben Affleck had with Sam Harris and Bill Maher about Islamophobia. I’ll read a transcript sometime but when it comes to debate I would much rather read than watch, it allows a more careful examination of all the points being made. Well, that, and I really have no desire to listen to Sam Harris. Bill, with the exception of this issue, yes, but Sam, the hell with that. I will say that I am happy that someone with something of an audience finally called Bill and his fellow race baiting friends in the atheist “movement” out on their bullshit. Continue reading

An Evening in Purgatory

emergency room

Everything is white noise and antiseptic odors. Malory stares at the faded, mint-green tiles of the examining room. She is shaking but she does not notice it. Her heartbeat is a hammering rhythm deep in her ears and she can actually feel it in her jaw. She stopped crying an hour ago. Why cry when the only voice in her head is a persistent, angry, panicked scream? Continue reading

New Poem: Baffles

Tap, tap, tap. Is this thing on? Been a few weeks. That last post, and the admittedly subdued response to it (lost a newish friend IRL over it, her loss, not mine) took a lot out of me. Nobody ever wants to listen to others’ experiences. I try, I’m not perfect, but I try. I want to do even better and while I deserve no cookies, as the kids say, for that, it makes me sad that it seems even trying is beyond most folks. Maybe I’m wrong, but listening to people I am not noticing a lot of listening going on. Hence this poem. Continue reading

What You Don’t Want to Hear

WALMART-John-Crawford-mug

I really, really, do not want to write this post. I have been procrastinating like mad all while my gut rips itself apart. Even as I type I feel another anxiety attack coming on because as much as I talk the talk about being willing to offend those you care about/for, walking the walk is sometimes hard, especially when you know what you have to say is going to stir up a monster shit storm all directed at you and probably lose you a few friends in the process. If I am going to be true to myself, and the intent of this blog, I have to do it.  Continue reading

New Poem: Ascent

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“Don’t read the comments.” I think about that advice, advice I mentioned the other day. It is good advice. I know there are so many voices that care about the oppressed, but sometimes the oppressors drown them out. Please don’t think that means we don’t know you are there, and please don’t join the other side by calling us ungrateful. We are grateful, sometimes though, the climbing is hard. Continue reading