Dear Mr.Harper, meet the Radical Handmaids won’t you?

“Maybe none of this is about control. Maybe it isn’t really about who can own whom, who can do what to whom and get away with it, even as far as death. Maybe it isn’t about who can sit can who has to kneel or stand or lie down, legs spread open. Maybe it’s about who can do what to whom and be forgiven for it. Never tell me it amounts to the same thing.” Chapter 23Margaret Atwood, A Handmaid’s Tale

Dear Stephen Harper:

I see what you’re doing and I don’t like it one god damned bit.

Cutting the time the public has to respond to environmental assessments, dismantling social programs, under funding Aboriginal education programs and this….motion 312. You and your politics sicken me.

As feminists, we are the victors of small battles but we’re miles away from winning the war against your kind. And by that, I don’t mean men (some men are awesome, supportive allies) I mean conservatives, religious right, classist, white people who suffer from entitlement issues.

In a previous post I wrote called: my body, my rights, I mentioned motion 312 – this is a Canadian Conservative government initiative to decide when ‘life begins’ in the womb.

A body of male politicians will be working on this report with no input, it would appear, from the 51% of people in this country who it affects most.

This is what women in this country are doing about it:

I am not just ranting about this, I’ve done something about it as well. I wrote my local Member of Parliament saying that this was disgraceful and I did not want her to support it.

I read online she is choosing not to support it because apparently, she has received from pressure from her constituents. YAY!!!

Personally, pregnancy is not something I have to worry about on a day-today basis, but my straight female friends do.

If they don’t have access to safe and affordable birth control and reproductive health options, then I’m going to join in the fight. My straight friends were allies in the fight for same-sex marriage, I support their right to choose.

The more voices, the harder it will be to ignore us…I’m not easily ignored Mr. Harper 😉

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How’s Your Blackberry?

In the small east coast town where my father is from, we’re closer to our Irish heritage than perhaps alot of people.

For us, British comedies from across the pond were a Friday, Saturday and Sunday evening treat with my grandparents.

I don’t know what was funnier sometimes, laughing at my nanny and poppy crack up over what they were watching or the skits themselves.

Now that my grandfather has been dead and gone for 19 years, I look at this with tear and a smile.

Enjoy 🙂

Two weirdos in the park or…my wife takes me for a walk

I got my vitamin D and a little sun burn on my pale irish skin today from a hobble in the park across the street. Yay!!

She brought me a hat, a sweet brown fedora lookin thing, my shades and we hit the trail and the speed of  crawl

I never remember what we chat about on our walks but it usually involves some hilarity, a trip or occasional fall with some more laughing to follow.

Today for some reason, in the middle of an empty field, we decided to pull up my shirt to see how my surgery scars are healing, they’re nowhere near boob zone and I still don’t know why we decided that was a good time and place,

I think its because we forget other people most of the time and are just generally used to be stared at when we’re together.

I think we also scared some kids and parents on the play structure several hundred feet away because in poking a finger at one scar, we realised a suture was missed and clumsily, my wife poked at it, causing it to come out and fall on the waistband of my shorts.

We both screamed a little like two ladies who saw a tarantula with an AK-47.

It  didn’t hurt. I think it mostly it was the shock that it popped out that gave us a start.

Then I snuggled a giant oak tree and admired some shoots newly poking their heads out of the ground, aaah lovely.

“You stepped in some dog shit with your boot,” said B

“Noooo I didn’t,” I replied, “I would’ve seen it.”

So because I didn’t see it, to me it didn’t happen.

Well, I’m definitely smelling something a little dog shit-esque in the living room right now.

Yep. Pretty sure it’s me….*groan*

Happy spring dear readers!

Zen & The Art of Loving Your Spouse

Health is the greatest gift, contentment the greatest wealth, faithfulness the best relationship. -Buddha
 
Marriage is not easy and it’s not supposed to be. That doesn’t mean it’s drudgery either, it definitely isn’t in my experience.
 
I’m not intending to make great proclamations with this post, these are merely the observations of one person who has promised love, honour and loyalty to another person.
 
We’re closing in on our two year anniversary and our lives together get more interesting and exciting.
It’s also brought up many challenges.
 
Without violating my wife’s right to privacy too much, she has a chronic illness which takes its toll on her and sometimes me.
 
It is difficult trying to be the healer and the one in need of healing.  Sometimes it makes me angry that some things can’t just take a back seat until I am well enough to carry everything on my shoulders again. But that’s not the way life works.
 
My problems are not as debilitating as hers are, at least right now, she’s been in the throws of her relapse for over a year and we’re beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel. As I am getting stronger, so is she.
 
It’s a real blessing.
 
I cannot say I have been the best care giver to her all the time. I’ve been angry, resentful, short tempered, occasionally non supportive and hurtful. None of these are intentional of course but the damage remains the same.
 
What I’ve found is that it’s vital, if not mandatory, that as a caregiver, you take care of yourself.
With my wife’s love and support, I went out with friends, joined a support group and pursued my own interests. It was just what I needed.
 
It gives me the energy to return to her and hold her when she has a bad night and talk her through the worst of it.
 
When we have a rough patch, and there’s been a number of them over the past year, I always remind myself to tell her:
 
“My worst day with you sweetheart is still better than my best day single.”
 
Loving yourself gives you strength, loving someone else gives you courage.
 
 
 
 
 

Mutant Planet Could Cause A Divorce

My wife loves mutant planet on Discovery science channel.

I love it too. But not to the same extent. I also hate our PVR now, or Tivo or whatever you call it where you are. Why do I hate it?

Because every time I”m doing something in the livingroom, B says, Ciaran! Ciaran! Wait, you have to look at this. She pauses mutant planet, too far back, too far ahead then too far back again. Lookit that, the snake! the snail! How that monkey has crazy feet or this frog attacked a fish.

I love my wife, very much. Though sometimes, I just want to sit in the same room and play video games or write or check my social networking pages.

Damn you mutant planet!

She cries when cute animals get hurt and then I feel bad for saying ‘hey, leave me alone.’

Given, I only do that after the 9th time in an hour when she’s taped 3 or 4 episodes and watches them back to back in an evening.

I’m soft hearted that way.

So I say again, damn you technology for never letting me get a moment’s peace when mutant planet is on.

p.s we can’t watch mutant planet Australia anymore because *spoiler alert* a kangaroo died.

see what you did mutant planet? see what you did?

 

Single Butches: Like a black Friday sale at Wal-Mart

I took B out for dinner this evening. It had been a while since we had some time just to ourselves and some money that wasn’t going for prescriptions or what have you.

Alone in the sunroom section of the restaurant as the warm afternoon light changed to evening, we laughed and smiled and enjoyed our time alone…then somehow got to talking about the nature of her femme-ness and my butch-ness if you will.

Of the B/F couples we know, we thought of who we knew where butch spouses were in any way more dominant or “in charge” or assertive than the femme in the relationship and the femme was more submissive.

This included our own relationship.

“I have a hard time to even think of one,” she said with a giggle.

“Me too.”

It’s true, I’m pretty quiet for the most part, spare with my spoken words, kinda shy. But not only that, I don’t seem to feel the need to be aggressive. Like most of us, if I’m disrespected, sure, I’ll call you on your shit, but for the most part, I’m easygoing.

A lot of my friends/acquaintances are the same, their partners were often the pursuers.

“I think it’s because we’re more shy maybe…”

“Or angry,” replied B with a laugh.

“Or shy and angry,” I said., “Why do you think that is?”

Her hypothesis: butch scarcity requiring femmes to work.

“I think it’s because butch women are pretty scarce. And a single butch is even more rare. You have to jump on one in the 5 minutes they’re single or else…it’s like a black Friday sale at Wal-mart.”

This comment made me almost choke on my drink from laughter.

Apparently because femmes have to fight for the scarce number of butches that exist. So if you’re gonna bag yourslf a butch, it’s survival of the fittest baby.

What do you think?

Do femmes secretly run the show? Do butches? What’s your experience?

 

 

Fathers & Pseudo-Sons

When I speak to my father it’s much like ‘going through the motions’ of what society expects us both to do. As a father he’s supposed to keep in touch with me and know what I’m doing.

As a thirty-something child, I’m supposed to have ‘gotten over’ childhood hurts and adulthood hurts, matured and accepted my father for what he is.

Were I in possession of the right genitalia, I would’ve been the perfect son, hell, I was the perfect son:

I excelled in highschool varsity sports, helped with renovations, brought home nice girls and got a job and started paying my way when I was 15 years old. I went to university, kept in reasonable touch with the home front and drove my brother to hockey practices.

This difference between who I am and social constructs created a divide of epic proportions between my father and me.

It didn’t have to be if he wasn’t, in his words, “old-fashioned”. This is supposed to be the words that make me accept that he is uncomfortable when I hold my wife’s hand or shave my head or talk about ‘male’ things that I like.

Over the years, since his secret understanding that this is who I am, he has stopped asking about my life and has limited our conversations to the weather and his household projects.

I have to say that this is fine now because I’m sick and tired of “don’t talk about your personal life” or the sudden and not so subtle subject change signalling his clear discomfort.

This is just a part of life, I can wear myself out and fight him every step of the way, every ignorant comment and every awkward silence. Or I can attempt the Buddhist practice of acceptance and compassion of this man.

Again, cultivating patience is always my downfall.

Your children are not your children. They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself. ~Kahlil Gibran