Robin continues her search for a new sidekick. Think this kid might be worth giving another shot. They will discuss the division in the LGBTQ+ community and a Top 5 that we can all say cheers to!
a lonely chipmunk once sat in a tall tree looking in the window
It longed for a place it could belong for it had nowhere to go
It had wandered the woods all its days looking for a home
it sailed the sees with the rats it’s life destined to roam
from tree to tree, park to park it never did belong
it made a friend along the way that taught it a helpful song
“love will find you when it’s time
until that day when all is fine
look to the wind it will guide you
when life is ready your love will find you”
the tree rat kept that song close in its heart
all its days when life tough it’s nature was to depart
one day a bird sat in a tree singing that very tune
it felt like destiny the chipmunk was over the moon
The bird and rodent became more than friends, indeed family
The rodent felt a love so strong it felt grafted into that tree
the two did fight though day and night despite their growing love
the chipmunk decided it hurt the bird too much, the bird had had enough
the chipmunk left the tree tears in its eyes
it never cried like it did that night its love the birdie died
But bird reached out and made it right with a warm embrace
it scolded the rodent for putting worry upon its tired face
the bird insisted the two would live as sister all their remaining days
the chipmunk was glad the two would in tandem run life’s rocky race
Hearts broken and mended the two found a way to live in harmony
as they grow older the chipmunk is very happy it climbed that sturdy tree
I don’t have to tell you things are terrifying right now in Afghanistan. The United States military recently decided it was done with the region, leaving the area wide open for the Taliban to move in and begin spreading. Things are bad for everyone, let me be clear, but things are especially bad for women and LGBT people.
I am not on the ground so I can’t report on what I can’t see. There are numerous reports and accounts of LGBT people being murdered by the Taliban as they move into the territories the U.S. abandoned. What I can tell you is we are seeing the same old political debate right here in the U.S. about what to do with those refugees seeking asylum from a war torn country. Then there were reports of attacks on the major airport that was providing a lifeline for people in the region to flee to safety.
The problem facing the refugees right now isn’t just an American one. Even if you can argue we made the mess it is true we cannot clean it up on our own. Putting aside for one second that the war was started under a NATO treaty, this refugee crisis is NOT a U.S. problem, it is a problem for everyone in the world to be watching closely and doing what they can to help.
I am asking if you live in a country that offers even slight protections for LGBT people then now is the time to contact your representatives, your state department, your military leaders and demand they help rescue the refugees fleeing this terrifying situation. My heart breaks, bleed for those people who are suffering and dying because of mistakes my countries leadership made. I won’t play the blame game, not now it’s too urgent lives are at stake. What I will do is retweet any GofundMe I see to help refugees, I will try to encourage everyone to do something, even something small like giving to the Red Cross or another humanitarian relief fund. Now is the time to act. Before you retort I can’t afford that, you can if you give up one Starbucks or soda pop a week. Give what you can. A dollar a month, a dollar a week, if you can give more. Sometimes we find ourselves facing our own internal crisis. Personally I talk a lot but don’t always follow through. I am following through on this one. I have already been giving blood as often as they will let me. Today, as soon as I have finished writing this, I will be making the largest donation I can afford to a humanitarian cause I believe will help. It’s not much but if everyone gives a dollar that’s more than enough dollars to make a difference.
Of course if you truly can’t even afford to give then please at the very least help spread the word. Share any godfundme or relief funding posts you see on social media. Share blog posts such as this one encouraging people to give or help. If you feel compelled to contact those I mentioned above then by all means do so. There are people out there dying right now and they need our help. Not all organizations are equal so it’s up to you to do some research to make sure their doing what they say. I am only sharing links I can find.
If you are in Canada, the U.K., Mexico, Germany or some other country that has the means and the resources to help, please encourage your government to do more. If you have the means to host a refugee consider doing that. This crisis is urgent. I can’t save everyone but if by my actions one life is saved I didn’t do enough, but I did more than nothing. We have to do more because it’s not just our rights under attack, in some places it’s our very lives at stake.
Here are links to LGBTQ+ organizations you can trust that can help out.
And a few who support LGBTQ+ people you can recommend once they are safe:
I think it started back in May while I was still working for this medical lab via a staffing agency. The first time I threw up unprovoked was at lunch. It was a normal tuna wrap my sister Robin made for me that morning before work. There was nothing out of the ordinary. At that time I chalked it up to either the heat or where I worked.
After a couple weeks went by I started vomiting more frequently. At first it was after a meal I either ate too much, ate too fast, or ate something questionable. I started to get frustrated so in a desperate attempt to make my food more palatable I started putting hot sauce and crushed red peppers on everything. This wasn’t something I normally did but rather on occasion to spice up certain meals. But because I was feeling weird and Robin was getting into me about the spices I kept going. Turns out this contributed to my current condition.
In June it got to the point where I was throwing up multiple times a week. I could hardly keep anything down and nothing made sense. I started talking to my doctor about it and he prescribed an appetite suppressant believing I was eating too much as Robin suggested. That drug only gave me nausea and more intense vomiting began. After a week on the new drug I checked into the E.R. and started begging for answers. I was shocked to have them come back with blank stares. I was recommended to see a GI specialist and sent home with a note to miss work.
After that things got worse. I stopped taking the drug that I thought was making things worse. I started changing my diet based on what information I had. Mostly it was adjusting to account for the prediabetes I had been diagnosed with and the high cholesterol. This didn’t help and pretty soon I was at the point every single meal I ate return in force. Then it got worse.
By the middle of July I was vomiting everything, even water! I was afraid to take my pills. I was afraid to eat. I was in intense, constant pain because of the throwing up all the time. Then came the worst part yet, the dry heaves. I wasn’t even eating and my stomach was trying to expel something. It was this point in time I became truly desperate. I had to wait until the start of August to get into a GI doctor. Five minutes in her office and she already knew what to do. She put me on a liquid only diet. She restricted the things I ate cutting me off from acidic foods, spices, dairy, gluten and soy. At first this left me in a different distress as while I had answers I was still in pain and was on a very limited diet. Due to some miscommunication on my part for, no surprise, not paying attention to what she was saying in the office visit, I wasn’t following the diet perfectly and was missing out on foods she said I could have. For two weeks it was soups and rice for me with Jello on the side. Then the pain returned in full force.
Finally last Wednesday I got tired of the pain. I called both of my doctors my primary and specialist. I explained the updated situation and they both agreed it was more urgent. The each recommended the same thing and once I made those changes I have felt fine ever since. Today, one week later. I am back to eating normally. Not the way I did before all this but eating regular food again. I still stick to the restrictions she gave me and I take all the various medications as instructed.
The moral of the story is this, listen to your body and seek medical help if something out of the ordinary is taking place. If you are throwing up for any reason other than gluttony or food poisoning then check with your doctor, right away. The damage that was done to my body is permanent. It will not heal. There is no cure. I will never be the same as I was three months ago. The physical toll taken on my body cannot be reversed. Not to mention the financial crisis I am currently facing due to missing so much work.
I almost died because I didn’t listen to my body. I didn’t listen to my loved ones warning me I was pushing myself to the limits. Don’t make the same mistake I did. Take better care of yourself because damn it all this was beyond miserable. I was legit begging God to just let me die.
At one point cancer was a suspect in all of this. That week of waiting on test results was the worst week of my life. I had all kinds of thoughts going through my head. In the end it could still be elsewhere but more tests are required. I am not out of the woods yet. Right now I have a plan to move forward and way to eat regular foods again. The pain has subsided but it took medication and persistence to make that possible. I don’t feel 100 percent. I am operating at 75 percent and likely will remain so for the foreseeable future. Listen to your body, it knows when something is wrong. I should know, mine was trying to kill me.
I haven’t actually lived entirely on my own, completely alone nearly as much as I would like. Being someone who prefers the lack of company most times, who enjoys being alone with her thoughts, I often find myself in desperate longing for solitude. Except when I have it.
It was 2010. It was during a very complicated back-and-forth series of moves from Idaho to Nebraska, Nebraska to Nevada, Nevada to Utah then back to Nevada before heading to Nebraska for a long stretch. That last time I landed in Nebraska was it for me. I got there June 2009. I was living in a van parked in my sister’s back yard at the time. I needed a job, house and vehicle of my own.
Candy was helping me get on my feet. She got me a van I could drive, helped me get on food stamps and unemployment for the time being and located a house for me that my parents agreed to buy to let me live in until they were ready to move. I moved into the house in the spring of 2010. This was one of the longest stretches of time in my entire life.
I remember moving into the old house the first day. It was a two story country house, you know the kind of messy, raggedy old run down beat up place adjacent to a corn field you’ve seen in a hundred scary movies. Yup it was that house. A total mess. Roof sinking in. No electricity. No a/c or heat. It was over take by weeds, including massive ditch weed which is a naturally grown marijuana plants for the uninitiated. Then there was the filth.
The family who lived there was a man and his wife who had a young kid. The house was a mess. They just packed their suitcases and moved out. They took only their furniture leaving the entire house piled knee high with garbage. It was dirty clothes, diapers, women’s hygiene products, everything just garbage. I tried to clean up but failed. I took bags of trash out every day and never put a dent in it. I pulled weeds, hacked away at the crap with my shovel daily.
Inside the house my parents helped me get electricity. I also had internet. It was a four bedroom house. There was a master bedroom downstairs immediately through the living room with a large dining room to the side of that. Up stairs to the right was a tiny bedroom. Down the hall to the left was a large bedroom then at the end of the hall was a smaller room. I moved my stuff into the small room at the end of the hall. I picked it for a couple reasons. It was painted purple which appealed to me, plus was the right size for my bed, computer and a couple totes of clothes. I settled right in. I set up a card table for playing solo D&D adventures. I stapled blankets over all the windows so I could feminize during my private hours. Then I spent the rest of my time downloading movies, TV shows, video games, comic books and other digital files to my dozens of hard drives. I was still in my piracy phase so I had a little bit of everything.
I would sit on my desktop computer with speakers hooked up and watch TV, play videos games or watch movies for hours on end. I would take baths by myself and imagine what it would be like to live there forever. There was one complication, rodents.
The house was infested with mice, rats and naturally bats in the attic. Not to mention the insect vermin. It was in the country next to a corn field after all this was to be expected. This necessitated I take steps towards pest control. Enter Grayson and Shadow. I picked up two cats from a local lady who hung up a flyer at the local gas station. By the way this was a ghost town, literally, only 80 people lived scattered throughout it’s remains. The single business was part bar, part gas station, part sorta general store. It was off on the highway a short walk up the dirt road from my house.
The cats were brother and sister. I kept the names the lady gave them. The black long haired cat she called Shadow. Considering her evil heart I felt that was a sufficiently fitting description of that beast. Then there was the male cat. His name was Grayson. He was a short haired gray and white cat with fluffy fur but not too long. Not like Buddy. He became my most loyal pet ever. Sorry Buddy I love you to death but you got nothing on Grayson.
I didn’t have to buy cat food. They got fat and I mean fat eating the vermin in the house. They got plenty of exercise chasing down their meals too. It was pretty fun time for a bit. But then after a couple of months the loneliness began to sink in.
It was in the country in a dead town. There were no people. I could sit at the bar but I hated that. I sometimes socialized with either of my two sisters who also lived in town with their kids. I spent a lot of time with those kids. Candy had four at the time. Becky had her first two the third was on the way shortly. But that was it the full extent of my social life. This was when I really learned what it was like to live alone with nobody around. I savored the peace and quite. The tranquility of being free to wear women’s clothing sunup to sundown. I enjoyed my excess free time to watch all my shows, get caught up playing all my retro video games and I got far in that imaginary D&D campaign I was playing by myself using nothing but 1st edition books I had left over from my previous days of being a Dungeon Master.
I also spent an excessive amount of free time living in a perpetual state of day-dream. I imagined a whole life I lived entirely inside my thoughts. I became obsessed with this fantasy life I conjured up in my brain. So much so that I shifted my behavior to accommodate alone time to be able to spend as much time in my other life as I could.
I won’t share the details of that imagined life not lived. What I will say is it was elaborate. It involved PTA meetings, going to the school for open house, running for mayor, starting a business, then another. It was a deeply intense scenario I am somewhat ashamed to admit I recreated thoroughly, on multiple systems, in Minecraft years later.
June then July were two very long months. The time past and I waited. I didn’t have a steady job during this period of my life. Like many times before I relied on my wits to make just enough money to squeak by. My parents paid the loan and power bill. All I had to do was keep gas in my van, and buy my own groceries. I had food stamps so that was easy. I did some videography and photography work on the side for cash. I transferred some VHS tapes to DVD for a pretty interesting woman. I created a short introductory video for the closer by town. That was a work commissioned by the local Chamber of Commerce. They didn’t pay me in cash rather I got six months membership without paying dues. I tried to parlay that into some sort steady income. I failed of course but I generated just enough dough to live my isolated life I had always dreamt of having.
August arrived. The cats were beginning to drive me insane. Shadow was a female in heat. Her brother, Grayson was not fixed. I was constantly fighting that battle until one day Shadow decided to hell with indoor living she escaped captivity and entered the wilderness. I tried to bring her home to no avail. I mourned her loss and moved on. Grayson and I continued to prepare for the Fall. The arrival of cooler temperatures.
By the time winter kicked in I was holed up in that little bedroom nearly full time. I removed the side of the desktop casing to allow the heat from the computer to help warm the bedroom. I had a single electric radiator heater. I stuffed blankets under the crack of the door, cuddled Grayson like it was the end of the world and bundled up in my thickest winter clothes. By now the loneliness had nearly driven me insane. I was enjoying my fantasy time but it was consuming me. I was so obsessed with downloading digital files I began trading away my toys for hard drives. Pretty soon I had terabytes of hard drive space, burned DVD discs and even bought a Blu Ray recorder to burn Blu Ray discs. I was obsessed.
December arrived, my parents came with it. Having lost their jobs during the thick of the financial melt down mom and dad finally relocated to Nebraska as they had always talked about doing. Naturally this meant they reclaimed the house they had been paying for all this time. Which meant I was now, yet again, back to living with my parents. The dream was over. The nightmare had ended. I was back to reality. Instead of getting a job though, I finally had a real purpose in my life.
This time is the period of my life I consider rock bottom. I had given up on reality. I let go of my hopes and dreams. I settled for being on welfare, working odd jobs to fuel my soda addiction. I determined I could spend my entire life there peacefully playing D&D, day dreaming about a life not lived, downloading the entire Hollywood catalog. It was a snap back to reality. The fog lifted. I got into college that January and for the first time in my life took steps towards starting to live my real life.
Those few months I spent isolated in that house alone were some of the loneliest times of my life. It provided me with ample time to think which led to clarity in the end. I knew what I wanted to do with my life. I had a plan. I had a new purpose. And I had an end goal, transitioning to Stephanie. Today I am enjoying the fruits of the labors that came next. The trials were only just beginning. I was about to embark on the wildest ride of my life that landed me in a suburb of Dallas, living as a woman running this here very blog. A semi retired journalist who’s got some interesting stories to tell indeed. My life nearly ended that summer. I am glad it wasn’t the end only a new beginning.
Before you can fight you must be armed with knowledge. You need to study queer history. At the bottom of this article are links to articles you should read about, events in our past that will guide you forward. This is more a directive on how to get involved less on why to get involved.
We have so much to fight for I don’t even know where to begin. That is what people often ask me when I tell them to get involved to stand up they say where do I start. I often say do anything. Write a letter to your representatives at all levels. Write a letter to the President or PM of your country. Write a letter to your local sheriff, local police chief, local judges, etc., pleading with them to meet with queer people and learn their stories. Write anonymously if you must for safety but WRITE letters to everyone. Write to the school board superintendent and individual board members asking them to back and enforce inclusive policies.
I can’t do all the work for you but I can give some steps you can take to be more involved.
Letter writing is more effect than you think. Quite often a politician has a certain view simply because they don’t know any better. Many hate us but not all who misrepresent us do so out of hate. Most are out of ignorance. The best thing for our cause you can do is be yourself. Be your authentic self. Do no be afraid. They will hate you. Be ready for that. They will dismiss you. Be prepared. It’s a harsh part of our reality but coming out to any part of the rainbow instantly brands you a target and there is nothing you can do about that until, or unless, we enact change. Change starts at the ground level.
Start at the local level too. Remember the person who will sit in the U.S. Senate seat replacing your current senator could very well be your county judge right now. The future President of the United States could very well be the school board president of your local school district right now. Even so, politicians who climb the ladder start at the local level so must we.
I have written letters and made phone calls. I’ve seen change come in hearts come about because of that. But not everyone likes to write or is skilled at it. Not everyone has the time so what else is there?
You can give money to organizations that do the fighting for you. Give to Mermaids, National Center for Transgender Equality, The Trevor Project, the ACLU, Planned Parenthood, Stonewall, GenderGP, so so many others. Find an organization fighting for a cause that you believe in that will advocate for your interests and subscribe to their mailing list. Get their newsletter ad stay informed. When you hear a call to action consider what can you do to help.
What if you want to do more? GREAT. You can see if one of those organizations has a local chapter you can join. Maybe help fundraise. Maybe help spread awareness. Maybe help organize community outreach events. The point is we don’t always have to march in the streets with our picket signs. Sometimes just being seen is enough, is MORE than enough to solicit change. If you have a local queer business close by go out of your way to support it. Tip the staff a little extra too if you can. Also support queer content creators. The more we are out there the more they have to accept us. If you can, start your own LGBTQ+ etsy shop and sell crafts. Do whatever you can to further the community. If you see a crowdfunding link to help a queer person out, retweet it, share to your timeline, donate a buck if you can if nothing else.
If you have the gumption, the desire and the willpower to march, to sit in a protest, to throw eggs at courthouses then by all means resist your heart out. Do NOT be afraid to get arrested. You will. Take your licks, hold your head down till you are safe then hold it up HIGH, chest puffed out with pride you took a stand. You made a difference. Even if all you did was make a bigots day harder you succeeded.
Use social media to your advantage. Too often we block the trolls, haters, chasers and bigots. When in reality, even if it seems like a lost cause, engage with them. Be cordial and respectful. I mean it kill them with kindness and even their friends will turn on them. Then you won a new ally to our cause. We have to resist. We have to rise above them. We have to do better. Otherwise we’ve already failed. And listen, we’re LOSING the war we need to turn the tide. Even small victories are often set back with new pushbacks. It happens every time we win one they take three away.
If you are on the lgbtqia+ rainbow, like it or not you are already a political advocate for your cause, whether you like it or not. Know this though. You are not alone. You have support from within and outside the community. If you need help reach out to a queer person you trust. Use social media. Call one of the hotlines. Hell just go down to your local Planned Parenthood office and ask to speak to an ally. Whatever you need to do to stay safe. But remember this is a WAR there will be casualties. We must all be willing to die for the cause otherwise when they do get your it will be for nothing. Don’t let your life be a waste. Fight by any means you are capable of doing. If you need help ask for help. If you want to write a letter and need ideas ask me, I am a professional writer with inside connections to many politicians even several who are anti-LGBT. I will do my part in being a guiding force. A voice for the voiceless.
When you are trans the one thing we often get caught up in is how we wrestle with our past selves. Many of us, myself included, attach certain parts of our former lives to the guy mask and other parts to our true girl self. Some things we used to enjoy can trigger dysphoria creating turmoil in our hearts.
I have been trying to reconcile that women can enjoy the same things as guys. I know there are things, behaviors and interests that were forced upon me by society and the like because I was presented as male. I know this causes me to reflect on each one. So why do I find myself okay liking cars when those are a very obviously male-centric interest? Glad you asked! Let me explain.
My dad was a car guy. I could say it’s as simple as that and leave it there. Now if you know me at all you know I had a fairly typical relationship with my dad we mostly bonded over sports and cars. We rarely talked anything else. Yes it is true he taught me a lot about cars. Enough that it annoys me when a mechanic tries to mansplain to me the inner workings of my engine when I ask for a simple oil change. I just roll my eyes and get over it.
Cars for me do represent freedom. As someone who has quite a job in the middle of the night, packed my car with essentials and hit the road for who-knows-where more times than I can count yes I firmly believe that cars provide a certain amount of freedom. I have also lived in a vehicle more than once in my life so I respect their multiple uses as well.
Cars also represent human ingenuity. Notice I didn’t limit it to American ingenuity like some would. That’s because there are English, German, Korean, Japanese, Italian and French cars that all exceed engineering expectations, among others. America has a vast car market and product range, but we’re far from the best at it and I’m okay with that. Oh sure I am a Ford girl all the way and you can talk till you are blue in the face nothing will change that. Doesn’t mean I can appreciate nor desire to own non-Ford cars but my primary vehicle will surely always be a Ford model of some sort.
Currently I drive a Ford Escape. It’s my first SUV. I love it. It gets me around like a car. It has a solid V6 which strokes my ego in the right places while being as environmentally friendly as an SUV can be I suppose, and it nearly doubles as a van/truck as needed. It’s also my first tan colored car and it just looks appealing to me. Sure it’s a clunker. A 2008 model that looks like I drove it out of the junk yard and should take it back any day now. But I still love it.
I have had a lot of jobs over the years. There are a number I push out of my mind and refuse to discuss. There are two in particular that stand out but three I will discuss that are directly tied to my love of cars.
The first is the Chevron station where I worked with my dad in Jackpot, Nevada. This was my first car-centric job and I loved it. Part of the job, the majority of it in fact, was selling gas to motorists. This afforded me the opportunity to see all sorts of amazing cars throughout the day. This was the only station for 100 miles into Nevada on U.S. Highway 93, a road that runs from Canada to Mexico straight through Las Vegas, a car show capital. I saw some beautiful cars. The casino also attracted tourists from everywhere so that helped too.
There was another part of the job I secretly enjoyed despite publicly complaining about it. Working on cars. I wasn’t a mechanic but we were also a light duty auto shop. I was able to do oil changes, tire repairs and little thinks like replace batteries or alternators from time to time. I also sold auto parts on a regular basis. I had a friend, several in fact but one in particular who was a car nut who also had is own repair business on the side. I sold him a lot of stuff and he taught me lot about cars.
My second job in the car business I cherish my time there came much later. I worked as a Mobile Parts Pro for Advance Auto Parts for a whole year and a half. It was a thing I did on the side from working at the TV station and doing weddings on weekends. It was a blast. I mostly delivered auto parts to shops. I regularly chatted with mechanics, and their bosses, about the vehicles they were working on. I also delivered to the dealerships so I got to go inside the dealer repair shop quite often. I enjoyed working with and along side all those cars and trucks. I especially enjoyed learning more about the parts, the inner workings and the different models that were interchangeable not to mention all the car-care products. A part of my job was sales and another part, because it was retail, was stocking the shelves. I got to handle car parts constantly and I found this quite thrilling! It was a pretty fun job all things considered.
I had a few other minor sorta car centered jobs. I worked at an auto shop for a friend who owned it once. I worked as a Sears in the backroom and received products including auto parts. But the best one, the longest lasting and largest part of my career was pizza delivery. I loved delivering pizzas because the majority of the job took place in my own personal vehicle. I got to cruise the streets jamming to my tunes while some schmuck paid me to take food to my friends. It was a blast. Oh I was that driver, you know the one who took longer on runs because I would chat up the person at the door about their cool stuff I could see in their living room. I wasn’t social but like when I was a news reporter if it’s a part of the job I can turn it on as needed.
I also loved how most other drivers were into cars too so everyone had their own unique touches to theirs. We would swap car stories with one another. It was so much fun. I did it from 2002 until my last delivery job in 2015. Oh and notice how delivery was a big part of my auto parts job above, yeah I got to drive some neat vehicles too.
In 2017 I was feeling very poor. I had a low paying job, was drowning in credit card and student loan debt and had a car payment that stretched my budget to the limits. As a major toy collector lacking the funds to buy the action figures my heart desired I turned to Hot Wheels. I drew upon my love of cars to pick up Hot Wheels and Matchbox cars that I imagined myself wanting to own. Before long I amassed a huge die cast car collection that also includes the revamped Micro Machines, some John Deere and soon the revived Johnny Lightning. I stick to the Hot Wheels scale mostly because it’s familiar and cheap. Also because they don’t take up much space. And yes, I am a nerd I play with my toy that means my Hot Wheels go Vroom Vroom around the place. What can I say I love cars. I think I am allowed to. I had a female friend who entered the best in show at a car show once. The girliest girl you’d ever meet. Her day job was selling ads for a newspaper, weekends she sold women’s clothes. She was a car girl too. It’s okay to be female and like cars. Just don’t get me started on the Fast and Furious movies. I don’t have time to dig into that hot mess.
Robin talks a bit about daily acceptance stressors. She also has an announcement at the end of the show. Last time flying solo, whatever the hell that means.
Save the trees. It’s like a calling card for the far left and a rallying cry for the radical right. Somehow protecting our environment we depend on has become politicized. Of course that’s because those in power profit off raping our planet thus they need support of the masses to continue their plunder. But we could be doing so much more.
Earlier this summer I took a visit to my nephews wedding in northern Idaho. It was beautiful beyond words. I plan on sharing a photo gallery in the very near future. I can’t describe how majestic those magnificent trees were. It got me to thinking about how we were destroying this planet, and what we could do more of to try to help out.
Even though I end up killing most plants I bring into my home I keep trying. I do this because I want to have more plants around me. It’s good for the environment. It’s good for my peace of mind. There is also the added benefit of them helping keep the air around me clean and fresh without spending money on environmentally unfriendly air purifiers.
One thing we can do is plant more trees around us. I know it sounds radical plant trees. I know it also sounds expensive. But really it isn’t that hard to do. Not everyone has land to plant on. Not everyone has access to city parks to plant on either. So what can we do? One thing we can do is going to sound radical but I think it is high time we start getting radical on protecting our planet.
I used to live in small towns most of my life. One reason I despised going to the city and thus dreaded moving there was seeing all the pavement we poured over the grass, all the buildings we cut down trees to build. We try to plant trees in cities but we trim them, cut them to look neat while reducing their effectiveness. But in small towns there’s plenty of places to open trees.
The radical end of my though is we ban people form loving in dead towns. If a town has a population fewer than 1000 people the federal government needs to disban it. Force the citizens against their will to relocate. Not unlike what we did with the natives when we needed to build the railroad, or our cities, or just to be dicks about it. Time to employ that strong arm for a good cause methinks.
Why depopulate small towns? Because one they are a massive economic and resource drain. Think about it. A town with say 300 people, only a third are adults statistically speaking means that city is not generating enough tax revenue to support itself. It is draining the state, federal, and county government depending on grants and other forms of funding to remain afloat to support those people. It also has the negative side effect of housing. One reason so many lament the argument of a housing shortage in our country is we don’t have a shortage there are plenty of empty homes in good supply. They just aren’t easily accessible.
How we benefit by pushing people out of these tiny rural communities into the larger but still small towns around them is multifaceted. We reduce waste by doing this. We can reduce the burden on our power grid tremendously by disconnecting all those lines that drain power to communities that aren’t self sufficient. Also think of all the expenses on waste water.
There is a more pressing and immediate benefit we also gain. We can reclaim those unused, empty houses. We can move the houses to the near by cities or demolish them. Reclaiming the land we are free to plant more trees and provide more wilderness for our wildlife. We can provide more trees to help scrub the toxins out of the air so we can breath and mitigate or slow down global climate change.
If you live in a rural area and can plant more trees please do so. Saving our planet from destruction should not be a political talking point. Heck it shouldn’t be controversial. If all of humanity were united on saving the planet we’d get it done in a matter of weeks not watch it slowly wither and die right before our very eyes.
I am not a politician but I think this is a good idea. If we can move all those people that are spread out in those rural areas that drain our resources elsewhere we can tighten things up and maybe open the eyes of the people who are blinding my their surroundings. If you live in a country town surrounded by trees and empty homes naturally you fail to grasp the nature of our reality. It doesn’t sink in because you aren’t impacted by it directly even though your lifestyle is actually making it worse by straining the resources of those around you.
I am not saying we can’t have small towns nor let people live out in the countryside. What I am saying is if we have a town that can’t support itself we kill it and find a more productive use for the land. Or we could wait for Walmart to bulldoze them and turn all our trees into parking lots.
I wish I could tell you what day of the week it was or anything specific about what I ate that day. I can’t unfortunately as my memory is fading. What I can tell you is it was a unique feeling I wasn’t sure how to express at the time.
What I do remember was sitting in my bedroom with stolen clothes. I had taken a single pair of panties, one bra a nightgown and one red dress. I know it was in the middle of the day because it was sunny outside and my sisters were all outside flying kites in the field behind our house. We lived in a trailer park in the countryside of rural Kansas. We used to play outside the wheat field. It was a lot of fun back then.
I distinctly remember putting on the panties and instantly feeling a rush of emotions. It was a mixture of giddy, excitement, fear, shame guilt, thrill, and bliss all rolled up into one. I later learned this was euphoria. It was my first time in 11 years on this planet ever experiencing euphoria. I knew that to be true at the time because it was a brand new feeling to me. I put on all the other clothes and began rolling around on the bed laughing to myself “Oh my god I am a girl” and then I’d giggle.
In my mind I began realizing if I was a girl, and I was attracted to girls, it must meant one thing, I had to be a lesbian. Now as a teenager I had guy friends who often would joke how they were a “lesbian trapped in a mans body” yet secretly I knew, that was me.
I hid those panties and the bra under my mattress thinking mom would never find it. The dress I returned because I knew my sister would miss it sooner or later. The night gown stayed under the covers. From that day forward I made it a point to go out of my way to spend as much time alone as I could in my bedroom in my girl clothes. It became an obsession of mine.
I remember that same day sitting there on my bed in that dress fantasizing about the day I would come home from work, in a dress, kiss my wife on the cheek, then take my kids to the park. I imagined a perfectly normal life. The only difference was I was a girl and so was my partner. I didn’t have a concept of sex yet. I sorta knew the basics I mean I knew the mechanics but not the specifics. Just enough to get me into trouble I should say. Nevertheless my day dreams didn’t involve lesbian sex. Heck even after I grew up and had to fight off my “male libido” I still fantasized I was the woman. Always. No need in sugar coating it in my mind I was female. I just knew and that day I had confirmation.
Today I identify as a transgender, bisexual, queer woman. I don’t know if I am asexual and biromantic I am still contemplating that. What do know is this. I was 11 years old the day I confirmed I was a girl.