04 February 2012

Prejudist assholes need not apply

I wish I had an audience. I wish I had bigger than an audience. I wish I had the ears of the world listening to this one moment. I wish my blog was well-read. I wish I had a voice louder than this one. Because for this one entry, this tiny, fractional percent of the total, non-cohesive, and wide span of topics to have ever crossed my thoughts or my underdog-rooting convictions or even my plain, ole whiny rants, I do believe this tops them all. If not, it comes awfully damn close.

In all of the roads of my life, no matter where I've stopped, no matter who I've known, no matter how I've cried or how I've laughed, nothing has ever got my panties into a bunch as much as blind, flagrant injustice. I would take what little education I have and magically force it into the minds' eyes of the ignorant. It is the number one source of aggravation in my world and in a world created to be and meant to be governed by the One Creator of True Love...

...because it doesn't even require being super intelligent.

It requires having a heart.

Did you hear that, you racist bastards? Yeah, I'm probably talking to you. 'Probably' talking to you because of all the people to read this little hole-in-the-wall blog, the racist audience is probably non-existent; and 'probably' because I don't know any racists personally. Somehow, miraculously, I've been given a life that has only seen that blindass hatred from afar.

A mother-loving, humble-seeking, quiet-bleeding heart.

Yeah, sure. I know a lot of people who kind of think I'm silly for getting so worked up over a cause that really has "nothing to do with [me],"---and it doesn't even make sense to be proverbially flailing my arms when the underlined focus is ultimately peace---but it does have to do with me. It has to do with all of us. And sometimes, you just gotta create the illusion of fighting fire with fire by holding up a mirror.

Native and aboriginal peoples don't need me to speak for them. They are strong and resilient in a way that surpasses the least or the best of anything I could say. I don't even know how the least of my native friends would feel about the least of my words or intentions. But I do know this: I passed many days between here and the first days of my adult life witnessing various forms of racial commentary, jokes, and even pejorative remarks specifically in regard to native people. Which have, only up until this week, been allowed to pass before me unchecked.

I also know that for as white as I am, there is also a line of blood---however "diluted," however masked by the rest of my muttage---that is directly descended from Mexico, a country that, however you divide the politics, scandals, immigration bullshit, and the cartels, derives its culture straight from Aztec ancestry and mythology. A native people.

30 January 2012

Asking versus nagging

Okay, let me just start this with one, big ole disclaimer: every relationship has its own quirks, its own methods of getting along, relating, and its own versions of repair attempts that can patch up an argument or divide it in a given topic. Each relationship has its own distinct character, made up of two individual people working to hard to meld entirely individual worlds into one world. Each one is unique.

Also, I detest, loathe, hate the word "nag."

I just read an article on the Slate Magazine website that was some female author's attempt to explain the concept of nagging by asserting her belief that in order for nagging to stop, one must understand the politics of it. (You can see it here.)

Ha! As IF... it were that simple.

It sounded a lot more like an attempt to sound intelligent within a wordy ramble of pop psychology than it did just a point of view, and I had an immensely difficult time trying to make myself read through it. Not just because it was sexist--sexist from a woman's point of view!--and rambling in its own way, but because even the structure made it hard to follow.

It was like watching someone take a giant leap back towards my junior high days, watching in horror as someone slid awkwardly into my old, baggy jeans and multi-colored t-shirts covered in bandaids and condoms. Or something.

Seriously, not a good look for a gangly Mexiwegian from Wyoming.

What was some woman doing rummaging through my old garbage? No, I meant my old writings.

I was pretty disappointed that such an inferior piece of crap was allowed on the Slate website AND that it did more harm than good to publish an already confused and horrible subject.

I remember spending my babysitting money on this stuff.

For the epic centuries that have made up my life and the life of other women, the word "nag" has been one of the most negative aspects of any relationship. For me, it is part of my vocabulary of Things To Be Aware Of in an overall stash of emotional intelligence that I carry around with me like Santa and his pack. Except a little dingier and a little crazier, kinda like that crazy aunt that brings you stuff you can't use right away. Or at all.

(I don't know how many of us have an aunt like that. I don't.)

It is a word that signals red. I've known, if by no other form than my dad's comments referencing my mom's behaviors while I was growing up, that it is meant to be supremely negative.

But I have other sources of knowing this, as well. It was part of the reason when, at the tender, dumbass age of 18, living with the father of my oldest daughter exploded in my face within the first year. Not only was I ticking time bomb of emotions and hormones, but based on the sordid and unrealistic belief that I would never nag, it came as a nasty and undeniable shock when he uttered those contemptible words, "quit being such a nag." Well! I never! Spitter, spatter...

Regardless of where it came from (foolish expectations? being unrealistic? not knowing myself well enough or not being a whole person?) it is a trigger word. Nag. It just conjures up evil pictures of hovering, bickering women, pointing their fingers over and over in the dark whilst their eyebrows arch high up in a steep frown and their nostrils flare. *Shudder!*

I don't want to be accused of this:

Or this.
Well, wouldja take-a-look-a-tha'.
And especially not this!

Why? Because even for a woman of the slightest intelligence, it is a written-off, flat-out insult. Even if I'm the only girl in the world that gets hotly ruffled by the mere mention of the word, my intention, like many women I know, is never to be that person to the man I love! Aw!


I have done it. And it's excruciatingly embarrassing because I know better. Sometimes it's like, oh I don't know... like there are hormones that override reasonable behavior or something. But I didn't want to be wrapped up in being that way, I wanted to figure it out.

So I read Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus in the late 90s; Boundaries In Marriage in the last few years, and discussed personalities at length with my psychologist mother-in-law, on top of having my own "interesting" communication through the ages. The best book I have ever read so far is 7 Principles To Making Your Marriage Last, by John Gottman.

This guy actually developed a Love Lab and observed couples and wrote down all of his findings. It's actually got some really interesting stuff about committed relationships that you can really sink your teeth into without putting an alien label on your spouse. He's the guy that can allegedly predict divorce within 3 minutes of a couple's argument, but whatevs. He's a man with the credits and has done some serious empirical research in this field.

He also covers nagging.

It's true.

After all of the psychological and spiritual and knowledgeable advances we as a human race have made, the work he's done has comprised a major step in the right direction, from a scientific point.

It all makes sense in the Law of Divine Love, too.

Or, the law that governs us all whether we choose to accept it or not.

Go figure.

It boils down to being aware of yourself and how you come across, how important that is to you, and the fact that it should be important to you. The entire area of nagging, specifically, has to do with being emotionally intelligent. Ya have to pay attention when you're talking to your partner and you really have to decide if what you're about to bring up is an absolute priority or a let-go-able offense.

And you have to be willing to remember what brought you together in the first place and work to keep that "what's important to him/what's important to her" dynamic going. After all, real love is an action word. The swooning stage wears off, life/parenting gets in the way, and it's a hard hit to the relationship. A person has to shut that off from time to time, but the most important thing is to keep the conversation about it (and other such an evolutions) between any two people on-going.