Friday, December 17, 2010

I'm a Friday with a Cause

Real story time.
You know how you get those e-mails, tweets, whatever and you can just _tell_ from the wording, the careful omition of details, that prodding to get you to read further and get sucked into the story where either they want you to forward the e-mail to everyone you know, or send money, or upload you banking information. Oh, you know the ones I mean.
This is one. Kinda.
What: Love146
Why: because I believe in the cause.

So, here is the story, okay?
While I was reading Stieg Larsson's Millennium Trilogy (The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played With Fire, The Girl Who Kicked The Hornets Nest), and there were all those stats about crimes against women and the sex-trafficking, it was really hard. A lot about the series was very hard to get through because of the personal connections.

I get asked just about every time I try to explain how, at 17, I have had HIV for going on eleven years. It happens, sure, but people want to know how it happened to /me/ and why I do not agree that I was raped.

To say that I was, I feel, diminishes what it is that happens to too many people, too many times every single day.
I am trying to keep the vocabulary here my own, and family friendly, so if something seems vague, keep the subject in mind and understand that I am talking about the absolute worst, inhuman, atrocities.

I was in the ER once, getting stitched up (don't worry about why) and I was listening to the conversation on the other side of the curtain on my right. Anything to take myself away from where and who I was. It was a girl that was raped. The cause of death was bleeding. Front and back. The girl's mother was not there. She was being sought by the police. /IF/ there was any DNA from the actor, they were going to have to go in and get it in autopsy. A nurse vomited. The person stitching me up asked if I was going to be okay for a second and I nodded. While attention was on the cleanup and the half fainted nurse, I got up and walked over to peek around the curtain.
The girl could not have been more than 3 years old. Her mother "rented" her out to pay for her drugs.
The next thing I remember, I woke up in restraints "for my protection" but that did not sit well with me either. I would not let anyone with external reproductive organs anywhere near me.

Later, I took a tour and visited all sorts of children that were there for all sorts of reasons. The nurse taking me around was reluctant to provide full disclosure, but I told her, "I just say a baby stabbed to death with a p'nis. You going to tell me this is worse." She looked at me in that you-have-no-idea sort of way and said, after a sigh, "Imagine when they live." We kinda bonded a little and she was less reserved.
We were visiting some burn victims later and she looked at me from the side, "What are you thinking?" I said, as I looked at a boy who was under one of those tents because like 70% of his skin was gone, "the people who brought him here knew he is human." She knew what I meant. Humans fight. Humans steal, beat each other up, murder... Humans love and hate and act like humans. What was done to the other children we saw, to the baby in that was dumped outside the hospital, what is done daily to people and children all over the world; they are treated like rags, like dirt, with no more regard than an old news paper. Only worse. The degradation. The insult. If they were /only/ beaten. If they were /only/ ignored. If they were /only/ neglected. Those things would not be as bad.

It is not /just/ men on girls. This is an equal opportunity exploitation. Yes, it is /mostly/ men on girls, but the boys cannot be forgotten. It is children of all sorts. People are fighting it. People want it to stop. People want it not only out of their back yard, but gone from the world.

It is sad. It angers me.

But even more - more than the violence, the trafficking, the disregard for human rights and decency - is that little nugget of knowledge I try to bury lest I loose all hope: None of it would happen if there were not a market for it.
Fight it.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

I am supporting LOVE146

I have started a LOVE146 donation page. I just put it up and have a lot to do to make it interesting.

Here is the deal. Yeah, I am asking for donations, eh?

Maybe you want to do something, but can't dig out a buck, or you dig out a buck but want to do more.

Send me some art I can put on the page.
Send me a personal story / share an experience that I can put on the page to draw others in.
Link to it.

Please, there are things you can do, even if they do not seem like much.

Take Care-
More later.

Friday, December 10, 2010

It's Friday + a dream

Well, part of a dream - but I'll get to that later.
Yeah, there have been updates to LMDE (Linux Mint Debian Edition) and so, and all the groovy updates promised. The big one I am waiting for is the 64bit release.
I mean, am I wrong or will this require a new iso? Everything else, yeah, great, I can get through updates. Well, not exactly everything. They said they made improvements to the installer, so I need to run the installer if I want to check them out.

So I am waiting (kinda) patiently for the new 64bit iso of LMDE. But I will be all excited when it is out - probably blog all about it and stuff.

As some of you are well aware, my - er, Dad's - house plays holiday host for the holidays. People were over for Thanksgiving, and typically we get everyone again for Christmas-New Years. Yup, that's right, a week+ of "house guests."
Every time, I work hard to make sure the house is ready for everyone. Then Mum comes and re-does it all - like it was her house. So, "Why do I do it, knowing this?" you may ask. I just have to. If for no other reason than when Mum comes and moved things, there are not those "clean" spots where things were, you know? Everything is clean before she touches it. Then I have to re-clean after they go to, uh, get "them" off things.
I am doing something different this year. I am completely rearranging the house full stop. Totally mixed up the chi or whatever. Couch - over there. Radio - there. Book case - (unloaded) over there (reloaded). Etc, etc. Even the kitchen is all rearranged.

The point of all this? To change things so radically that Mum will actually _notice_ that I am taking care of it. This is still a work in progress, so we'll see how it goes. It may backfire on me and drive me nuts. Oh, and for the record, yeah, I even am doing the bedrooms.

And, third:
Before I get to the actual "dream" part of this, you gotta know the setup.
In the past, I have had (bad) dreams about waking up next to Dad in bed and (bad) dreams about waking up next to him in bed that felt so real that I ran screaming into his room waking him up with a hockey stick. Being a bit of a sleep walker, I have actually woken up in Dad's bed, being... uh... poked in the back of the leg by him*. That was a fright and he ended up getting kicked in the face before things settled down.
[edit: I should clarify that he was /sleeping/ when this happened, eh? Not his /fault/.]
Also, Amy shares my bed when everyone is over for the holidays. So, I am not completely unaccustomed to waking with someone else in bed. Now, on to the dream:

In the dream, I was dreaming about everyone being here for the holidays and having Amy around. Then, in the dream, I dreamed I woke up rather peacefully, just stretching in the sun-warmed sheets, face down and feeling the still-fresh linen against my skin. I was quickly and calmly aware of the weight of someone next to me, my skin against their smooth skin. I could feel the rhythm of their breathing and it was comforting. I kept my eyes closed against the persistent, bright sumer sun. I felt the curves of their - of her body and knew she was on her back; slight curve of breast against the my ribs. My skin felt cool against her warm body, soft and tender. I smiled from the comfort of it all as I finished my stretch then rolled to my side, away from my bedmate to look at her face. The scent was so familiar I could picture the form before me before I opened my eyes and found...
That startled me awake for real. I should have known it was a dream from the light. There was too much light. Sunrise it not until like almost eleven. I had been expecting (in my dream) for it to have been Amy, so familiar and comfortable. I really believed my dream was real and Amy was next to me. I just knew it. Then to open my eyes and find Claire - I was instantly bombarded with new, Claire scents and rhythms. And that /light/. It was on the other side of Claire from me (well, no, it was all around such that the only things I could see were myself, the bed (and beddings) and Claire) and the light wrapped around her so tightly that I could only see her face - my mind filling in the rest of her from memory, vague and incomplete. At least she was smiling at me.

That was yesterday morning - Thursday. It kinda occupied my thoughts, leaving me lost to this distraction most of the day.
You know when you have an "off" day, right? And you can tell things are just not going the way they normally do. So, at fencing, I am off my game. Completely distracted. One guy who doesn't really beat me... doesn't really get touches on a normal day... beats me - twice - and starts talking to his buds about how much better he is because now he is better than me. He had extra toast with breakfast, and now he is better than me, so he is going to have extra toast before tournaments. He put on his right shoe first this time, so he is better than me and will now always put on his right shoe first. Some such nonsense.
On the other hand, the other, the really good fencers, are actually /more/ annoying. "Hey, there were a couple of opportunities in there you missed, thank goodness." Or, "Oh, my, I thought you were going to get me there... You normally get me with those." Etc, etc. Yeah, they could tell I was off my game, but they were trying to /help/. Even Coach started trying, but my mind just was not in it. I tried meditating, but oddly, it did not help.


So, this is probably a fairly frustrating post for some of you. It touches on Linux, Family, Dreams, Fencing... if I... Oh, I think I will...

Here are the first fifteen tracks in my current playlist:
[0/2680] Lily Allen - Everything's Just Wonderful (03:29)
[1/6901] Book Of Love - I Touch Roses (Long Stemmed Version) (05:46)
[2/6891] Book Of Love - Late Show (03:38)
[3/3300] KT Tunstall - Hold On (02:58)
[4/3209] Katharine McPhee - Over It (03:35)
[5/3294] 32+-+KT+Tunstall+-+Hold+On.mp3 (02:47)
[6/6946] Everything But The Girl - Letting Love Go (04:46)
[7/6939] Everything But The Girl - Driving (04:00)
[8/4235] Yaz - And On (03:12)
[9/5702] Garbage - Wicked Ways (03:44)
[10/5660] Garbage - Cup Of Coffee (04:31)
[11/3221] Katy Perry - I Kissed A Girl (03:00)
[12/3299] KT Tunstall - Funnyman (02:56)
[13/6902] Book Of Love - Boy (Extended Mix) (04:29)
[14/3121] Gabriella Cilmi - Einstein (03:40)

Oh, Mercy... somethings in that list should be omitted. :blush:

I just finished reading The Ghost and the Goth by Stacey Kade. It was a good and light teen candy book. I have these "Candy Books" that I read from time to time. Most are Teen, or YA books, but they are fun without having a lot of weight, you know? Why I Let My Hair Grow Out, The first HP book, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, In the Stone Circle, the first Twilight book (Uh, I guess that would be Twilight) and about anything by Meg Cabbot. I mean, there are other "light reading" books I have and like and whatnot. The Pern Series, some Piers Anthony, Dresden Files, Girl Vs Evil and whatnot. But these are not like my "deep reading" like Time Travelers Wife, or Never Let Me Go, etc.

Okay... lots of topics to post for one day. Have fun...


Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Hmm... That's funny

Okay, not funny, "Haha" but more like, funny, "peculiar." (Aside from the fact that I could not seem to remember how to spell 'peculiar.' I was so far off, spellcheck thought I meant percolator. But then, spellcheck thinks "spellcheck" is two words- the idiot. Kidding. Where whoudl I be whit owt mi speelchech.)

So, I was looking at my blogger stats this morning and it seems that this past week, about 1/3 of my audience is from Russian IP's, holding the #2 spot. Normally, #2 is "Elsewhere" (lovely island, but nuts if they think reading my blog is worthwhile.)

That tipped the scale and I decided to post a meta-blog, of sorts. I blog talking about (what else) my blog.

This started coming about towards the end of November when I saw that I was approaching a new peak hit count. This past June was, like, way above any other month. Mostly because that was the last time I had uploaded any new fiction to my DeviantArt collection. (And thinking about that bums me out because it reminds me how long it has been.) So, November was drawing to a close and I was like, goodness... I am only 10 hits away from my all time high. So I tweeted for people to go look at my blog. BAM! Way over my June peak.

So then, I was like, gee, thanks twitter, but how many people are going to come back, right? I mean, there seem to be a number of people that stop by on Monday mornings. I try to have some kind of post every Friday, so Mondays are kinda safe. Then there are some people that seem to stop by daily. That's cool. If I make a post, that alone seems to stir things up a bit. It I tweet a link, that really seems to make the biggest impact, and it does not even seem to matter WHAT is in the tweet, just that there is a link. (What is wrong with you people? You'll click /anything!/)

So I figure they are like, bots and stuff that just find and follow links.

I still think that there are only 3 people in the universe that /read/ this thing. I could probably make up government/corporate "leaks" and not even get in trouble for it... Keep my paypal and everything. Oh, wait.... I HAVE NO PAYPAL!

Hold on... (or do I...?)

So, there you have it... A blog /about/my blog.

Take Care-

Monday, December 6, 2010

This dream threw me

Hi, and welcome to another What the Dickens Was I Dreaming post.

It is not uncommon for me to dream about being in the hospital. It is not uncommon for me to dream about fencing.

These two things do not typically overlap.

So, here it goes...

I was dreaming I was in the hospital and I could not go fencing until I was out. Well that makes sense. But there was this... new wing/tower of the hospital that /I/ was responsible for. It was like, I was the "project manager" for it, because it was kinda for me. AIDS treatment and research in general, but I could not leave until it was done... and then, only for, like, short trips or whatever because I was going to be staying there. Sad, I know.
So, it was kinda weird and lonely wandering about in this place, all like 90% done. It /looked/ like it was /going/ to be real nice looking, but just, incomplete.

There was stuff in this one area that the construction people had for like their break-room sort of thing and I had food there too and stuff, but I was never hungry. I would just go and look at everything. Water, beer, juice, sandwiches-all-wrapped-in-cling-film.

This is going to seem, after my other dreams I posted, like I am some weird sort of exhibitionist, but I was nekkid. Starkers. That was why I could not leave until everything was complete because I was not going to be complete until it was too. Parts of me were missing - mostly on my left (I am right handed, so it was not /as/ big a deal to be missing part of my left arm, and my left ear and eye, and just kinda... stuff. I was not really focussed on it, but I /knew/ I was not done in places. And my feet were cold.

So, fellow fencers were like, when are you going to come back? And all I could really say was that it was going to be a while longer.

So they came to the hospital to fence in the open, incomplete spaces. Some of my old students were there to take classes from me and stuff too, but they were the same age that they were when I was teaching. I remember making a mental note of that in my dream - that their ages were wrong and that it probably meant something significant.

The dream ended unresolved. Before it had dissolved, we (fencers and some other friends of mine) were down in the parking garage. They got undressed too and we were making a game of trying to not be seen. Kind of a bizarre hide-n-go-peek.

Well, there you have it. Another weird dream, brought to you by... well, by me.

Take Care-

Friday, December 3, 2010

I tried to find the secrets of the brain

Music Goes Round My Head
by The Saints
"All my life I've searched upon the reasons for us being here
The universe and all that it contains
Well I tried to find the secrets of the brain

Twenty years I've labored trying to find who my creator was
But now at last the pieces fall in place
It's funny and it shows upon my face

And the music goes 'round my head
And I can't hear a thing you said
And my life echoes through my brain
It's so comical I'm insane"

Obviously, I would not know this song at all if not for the film Young Einstein. Young Einstein is just one of those films that, though anachronistic like crazy, is just good, silly fun. But nevermind that.

For the most part, I do not really do well at interpreting songs beyond the face value stuff. And a lot of songs make no sense whatsoever when you try and take them literally. There are some exceptions to my ineptitude, but for the most part, I either like a song, or I don't. I don't have to understand it any more than I have to understand /why/ I like it.

THAT being said, I do, at times, /try/ to understand. Sometime I just take what it means to me and me alone, as if it was written for me, though Mercy knows it was not. (Much of the music I like was written well before I was born, in case there was any doubt at all. If I was ever anyone's muse, it was in a life that was not this one.)

So... the music goes 'round me head. I have, over my years (albeit fewer than twenty) contemplated the meaning to the ultimate question of life, the universe and everything. I even read a book by that title.

I like listening to music; letting it consume me, letting it replace the me that is inside with the stuff that is it. Much like the way I like getting lost in a good book, I like the music to carry me away where I don't have to be me.

So, yeah, some of my favorite songs are all about the music; the melody, the rhythm, the bass, the je-ne-cest-qua.
Other times it is the voice, the story, the words.

Do I like instrumentals? Well, not as a rule, but there are plenty that I do like.
Do I like musicals? Again, not as a rule, but there are plenty that I do like.

I have music playing just about all the time. World music, techno, rave, jazz, rock, classic, soundtracks... even bagpipes.
Quiet, ambient new age stuff while I meditate, dance music while I workout, swing while I ride my bike... whatever.

But I have no talent for music. Like Henry DeTamble in The Time Traveler's Wife, my life has a soundtrack, but it is all by someone else.

This kinda bums me a bit.

So... If you are out there, and you are reading this blog:
What is playing right now?
Do you play an instrument?
Are you musically inclined, or declined?
Can you sing? Let me rephrase that... Do You think you can sing?

Just... leave a comment!

Take Care-