Manners: Tones Online

I keep reminding myself that, poll after poll, a majority of Americans SUPPORT mask and vax mandates, so (what small comfort this is), the whiny brats getting their way are the loud minority, not the majority. Ooof. A friend-of-a-friend (who I’ve never met) posted this on FB regarding masks in schools. The “brats” they are referencing are the parents protesting mask mandates for kids/teens. I avoided responding on FB (as stated, I don’t know this person myself) but it has been bothering me. Enough I went and found the post to copy-and-paste the words to make this post. I decided responding would be tone policing and that I shouldn’t say anything. People are allowed to be frustrated and sometimes (especially in a text-only online environment) tone can be misunderstood. This person is allowed to be frustrated that their children (possibly high-risk, immuno-compromised) are being put at greater risk. It is not my job (as a stranger) to call them out

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Life Events: Covid

My son has tested positive for Covid. He’s been in daycare, so it isn’t actually out of the blue, but it still feels sudden. I feel entirely unprepared. Fortunately, as reported, his symptoms are mild. He developed a low grade fever (right around 100F) Saturday which only reappears sporadically since then. He has a slight cough and keeps trying to dig at his nose like it’s got deep boogers. So this could have easily been just “January virus #3,762” but daycare called us Monday to inform us there was a positive case among the teachers. So we scheduled with the pediatrician for a covid test. The rapid test was positive. Fortunately, my husband and I are vaccinated and boosted, so at least we only have the mildest fear of Covid ourselves. Definitely the deeper concern is the toddler, unvaccinated. Mild Symptoms. VERY mild. He’s had ear infections that were worse. I have to keep saying it. Like every 5 minutes.

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Politics: Failure of the voters

This is a conversation I’ve been mulling on lately. The idea actually was seeded from an issue I’ve had at work my entire career. I’m in corporate training, and a wall I have bashed against many, many times is the “incentive issue.” To give an example I think most people have experienced – you call customer service for a company who provides you with a service (electricity, gas, internet, water, etc.). They will not listen to your issue until they have found you in the system. They keep having these long pauses of silence. They say they are scheduling a technician to come and address the issue and…. long, long silence. On the other end the customer service call center manager probably is pissed off too. Why do customers keep complaining about bad service? WHY ARE YOU UNHAPPY?!? Because the call representatives are given bad incentives. They are told to prioritize chatting instead of being able to silently search for

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Writing: Solutions shouldn’t be a conversation

I am reading a series where about half the book would be cut out if characters would just say shit aloud. “I don’t like this plan because I feel like…” would literally prevent half the plot points. And they keep doing it. It has made me close the book, stand up, and walk away muttering darkly more than once. And this isn’t uncommon. In movies and in books. A simple conversation could solve so many issues. And I know why so many times it gets used. Sometimes because it’s easy. But other times, I remind myself it’s real. My mother and I were talking about this the other day, how boundaries are hard because they require open, clear communication and that is hard. It’s hard to tell someone you love what you need or an outright, “No.” It’s definitely something I think I am going to try to be aware of. There are times when I have seen it used

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Review: Spider-Man No Way Home

This review will contain spoilers. I literally do not know how to review this movie without “spoilers” because it is so about the references. I mean, it pulls in Spiderman villains and such which we haven’t seen in the MCU to date. My short review (without spoilers) is this: It’s a fun movie for Marvel fans, but I wouldn’t send a non-Marvel fan to watch it. This isn’t like Black Panther or Iron Man (1) or Shang Chi where I could say “just go see it anyway, it’s so much fun.” You need background. Now, as a fan of the Marvel Cinematic Universe – this was soooo much fun. More in-depth I have seen a bunch of people saying how much they love this movie and it’s one of their favorites in the MCU. Nope. Not at all. I wouldn’t put it in the top 5, maybe even the top 10. Honestly (controversial take here) I don’t think it will

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Politics: Death Penalty

I am against the death penalty. I decided to write about it this week because yesterday the Governor of Oklahoma commuted a man’s death sentence hours before his scheduled execution. Seriously, he commuted the sentence at noon for a 4pm execution. And this is after a lot of protests, including school walk outs. God, I kind of wish I was teenager right now because these kids are so cool. When I was in ninth or tenth grade I read Dead Man Walking by Helen Prejean, a catholic nun who ministered to death row inmates. It opened my eyes to some serious injustice in the death penalty. And it’s really simple: We keep killing innocent people In 2014 a study concluded approximately 4% of the people executed were innocent. That doesn’t sound like a huge percentage – but some of the people were innocent. That is morally unacceptable to me. This isn’t a long point because I don’t know what else

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Religion: Sins of the Father.

I don’t write about my faith a lot. I don’t know how most of the time. But especially with everything going on in the world right now, this is one that I have been coming back to over and over. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children and their children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation. Exodus 34:7b 9 You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, 10 but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments. Deuteronomy 5:9-10  ‘The Lord is slow to anger, abounding in love and forgiving sin and rebellion. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation.’ Numbers 14:18 So I

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Review: Raya and The Last Dragon

I mentioned I watched this movie, but it wasn’t really the focus of that post. So here are my thoughts on the movie. So I was distracted trying to pinpoint aspects of various cultures, and there really are some interesting references to various cultures. I, personally, really like it. I never thought about mismashing viking culture, monogolian culture, and japanese-northern cultures together (they did!). It works really well surprisingly. The world is pretty amazing really. I think it’s one of the best parts of the whole thing. It was really unique. I feel like it was a brave decision to produce the movie with such an interesting and challenging world to build up. The plot is not complicated (it is a kid’s movie), so I can’t think of anything that surprised me. I would say it probably follows the very typical beats of “high-low-high-low-done.” Without doing an in-depth dissection, that’s how it felt. I don’t want to give spoilers, but

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Writing: Appropriation

I recently watched Raya and the Last Dragon (I know, I’m slow on these things). I wanted to see it because it said “dragon” in the title AND because I’ve heard some stuff about appropriation in it. Some hub-bub around the film’s release said it was insensitive to other cultures. You know, Disney perhaps not being known for their cultural sensitivity… I get it. Mulan is…. well it is based on Chinese legend but VERY westernized. Specifically, when I use this term I mean social appropriation, which says is: the adoption, usually without acknowledgment, of cultural identity markers from subcultures or minority communities into mainstream culture by people with a relatively privileged status. Examples include white people wearing clothing/styles of Native Americans, or (white people) making art based on African cultural style(s). You have probably heard some of these things. In the past several years, there have been conversations about people dressing as Michael Jackson (if you aren’t

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Writing: NaNoWriMo plug

I am not sponsored. Especially by a 501(c) non-profit. I have participated in NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) for years now. I have rarely “won,” but I keep trying. It’s a fun exercise if nothing else. A challenge. And even if you are not a writer, I would like to shout out the organization, because they do so much more than just entertain me every year. They manage a Young Writer’s Program for K-12 educators to use. This includes classroom kits, workbooks, and more. Getting them creating early and addict them…. I mean educate them in the love of writing. It’s also quite the community both in person (though not in 2020 and at least in Atlanta most of the “Come Write In” events are listed as virtual) and digital. There are regional volunteers who help wrangle the events and community. Seriously, if you have a few bucks to spare this month, I would encourage you to potentially donate to

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