Manners: Social Justice Warrior, Christian, or other…?

This is at least attempt #3 to write this post over the past 12 months. I keep starting it, writing a few hundred words, and deleting it all again. Because this is a tough topic – how to live a socially conscious life. And I am going to start by saying, we all probably doing it wrong. That is really the conclusion on the manners of it that I’ve come to. It might be possible to live a truly “socially conscious” life, but not everyone can manage it. Because it isn’t easy. Beginning: Defining the Problem Let me begin by defining “socially conscious life.”  This entire post was inspired about a year ago when my LBGTQ friends began (again) to boycott Chick-fil-A. Hell, SCOTUS just heard oral arguments to determine whether LBGTQ employment will be protected or not. It’s not like we got marriage equality and suddenly all the issues LBGTQ people face were magically solved. As a straight person,

read more Manners: Social Justice Warrior, Christian, or other…?

Manners: Sidewalks & bicycles

GA law is clear (and this is apparently true in more places than not): Bicycles are not allowed on sidewalks. I disagree strongly with this law. For several reasons, but not the least is manners. Manner FOR cyclists, and manners FROM cyclists. I object because I think most people riding bikes (at least that I’ve ever dealt with) have a few problems: 1. They don’t know the rules. I’m big on following the rules. The number of people who don’t know how to signal while riding a bicycle is upsetting. The number of times a pack of cyclists will be 3-4 abreast (the law says no more than TWO). The number of times people have been riding against traffic…. Seriously, I need to start a YouTube channel and call it “illegal shit I see on the road every day” – I could do a monthly bicycle video (at approximately 5-15 seconds per sighting, I’d need to collect a few to

read more Manners: Sidewalks & bicycles

Manner: Bagging Groceries

I was a grocery store cashier during high school. It is NOT a thrilling job. It is not mentally demanding. Emotionally – but not mentally. So in order to stave off boredom I came up with my own mental games to play. Things like racing the computer to compute change (I always lost). And optimizing grocery bagging. This past weekend, I went to the grocery store. I bought some pasta, pizza rolls, a bunch of yogurt, and lettuce. Not a ton of groceries, enough to get me started this week. Somehow my yogurts (granted, I bought like 10 of them), ended up in 3/4 bags. The pizza rolls were alone in the first bag. Then the spaghetti noodles and ~3 yogurts were in a bag. The lettuce and ~6 yogurt were in another bag. The mac n cheese and the rest of the yogurt were in a third. What is wrong with the bagger?!?!?!?! So when I get home I need to carry

read more Manner: Bagging Groceries

Theory: Pregnancy Brain

This is 100% my own theory based on my own (still relatively short) experience with pregnancy.  So, with that disclaimer – take it or leave it on my theory. Let’s start with “What is Pregnancy Brain”  WebMD has an entire article on it, but the jist of it is – pregnant women struggle to continue to function at full use – “momnesia” I never understood how real it was until I was pregnant – nor how early it starts.  I always assumed it was a 3rd trimester thing and because you feel so weird and out of sorts.  Nope, it definitely started late 1st trimester for me and has only gotten more noticeable as I move through the 2nd trimester. So here’s the theory: Momnesia is because there is a cycle or two of the brain always processing the pregnancy. My brain continuously cycles anywhere from 3-6 different things at the same time.  I don’t necessarily control these cycles.  On a “normal”

read more Theory: Pregnancy Brain

Manners: “Caravan” language

I don’t really want to talk about the racism inherent in the discussion of “brown” people “invading” our country.  The UN did a good job talking in broad terms, there are articles comparing it to conversations/books in the mid-1900s, and calling out politicians for using racist language.  It’s definitely part of this conversation, but there is something I want to address that I haven’t seen before. There has been a lot of conversation in the news about this “caravan” coming up from Central America.  And I realized the other day – this is coded language.   And let me start by defining “coded language” – it is terms or phrases that are designed to bring forth certain cultural images & context (negatively).  Collins English dictionary defines it as “If someone is using coded language, they are expressing their opinion in an indirect way, usually because that opinion is likely to offend people.” An example of “coded language” is Thug.  (I hate this word so much). 

read more Manners: “Caravan” language

Manners: Remove Thyself!

I read this comic this week: https://questionablecontent.net/view.php?comic=3837 (and if you don’t read QC – you should!) And I don’t want to talk about the content per say – but rather when it’s time to remove yourself from a bad spot.  I definitely had that in 2 jobs.  I knew things were turning sour and I couldn’t see how to fix it without compromising myself/my ethics.  So it was time to start job hunting. And this is true of relationships too.  Sometimes it’s a catalyst like Basilisk (the purple lady in the comic) experienced that just makes her see it.  Sometimes it builds up over time and one day you look at the mountain of evidence and say, “Oh. Wow.  Ok, that isn’t good anymore.” Knowing this is hard though.  I’ve always been afraid I’m going to “give up” on stuff too quickly, which sometimes means I “stick with” it MUCH longer than I should.  I hate giving up.  I hate admitting defeat.  I

read more Manners: Remove Thyself!

Manners: Pictures

Millennials hate getting their pictures taken.  I know this isn’t 100% true but the number of my peers who say “I hate getting pictures taken of myself” seems to vastly outnumber those who get excited (or hell even tolerate it). I have no idea if there are actual statistics on this.  I know I get to see all kinds of articles about narcissistic millennials obsessed with selfies.  But 1 person taking 10,000 selfies is not the same as all 80 million millennials taking them “all the time.”  If all millennials were really that narcissistic it would be even worse.  Really.  People were obsessed with their own image hundreds of years before my generation. Anywho.  Back to my point about “most millennials” hating getting their pictures taken.  I have decided this is because of poor manners.  Not bad manners, but certainly not good manners either. I realized sometime between high school and college that the picture wasn’t about me.  Even when I was the only person in

read more Manners: Pictures

Manners: Meritocracy is Bullshit

So I had someone ask me to write about this – it wasn’t something I had directly run into, but the minute I googled it I went “Ah, yeah.  I’ve heard this argument in other versions” The reason I put this as a “Manners” post is simple.  If you aren’t addressing your own imperfections/biases/etc. you are allowing yourself to be shallow and cruel – even if it’s unintentional, it’s rude.  It’s poor social skills. You may not realize you are being hurtful – but if I swing my elbow and break someone’s nose accidentally – my intention isn’t what mattered.  I apologize profusely, I grab gauze & tissues to stanch the bleeding.  I get a damn ice pack and try to be more careful I’m spinning in place.  I learn from the effect and I don’t shrug it off with “well that wasn’t my intent so suck it up and grow a thicker nose.” Ok, so hopefully you’ll buy into “ok, intent

read more Manners: Meritocracy is Bullshit

Manners: April Fools

I HATE this “holiday.” So let’s define what makes April Fools a thing.  (A) Pranks and (B) LIES. When people talk to me about it, I tend to say April Fools is the day in which we glorify bullies.  Because let’s be clear here; pranks and lies are a breeding ground for bullies and abusers.  So even if you are just being funny; you are giving permission for that person/those people for whom something like “empathy” is a bad word… well, all you’re doing is telling them this kind of behavior actually is acceptable. Yes, I am arguing that just like telling rape jokes informs rapists that other people think their actions are (ever) acceptable; your April Fools actions tells bullies & abusers that what they do every day must have some kind social acceptability. There are exceptions.  Google has generally been good at April Fools; saying they were going to use toilets/sewer systems to get internet to people; scratch & sniff searching;

read more Manners: April Fools