Category Archives: Uncategorized

Another Mass Shooting

I have stayed quiet on my blog about gun control. I have stayed quiet during mass shooting out of sadness mostly, and an inability to pull myself into a coherent state where my thoughts & ideas weren’t emotionally driven.

It has been 1 day since our last mass shooting. Before that, it had been 3 weeks.

Gun control, it is time to not just talk about this but truly act. We are not asking to eliminate all guns everywhere.

All we are asking is for each state to keep guns as regulated as they do vehicles. Simple.

I am saying this as a gun owner, and someone who lost a Veteran suffering from PTSD to a gun that he checked out legally from the military barracks.

This stuff needs to be kept track of.

Oh sure…. Felonies and drugs and blah blah blah. Guess what – The shootings within the last 3 weeks all were registered owners. This last one had a record of violence against women, was kicked out of the military for assault. His cover photo on FB was an AK-47.

 Is that the type of person you want to have legal access to guns? Because it seems like there were an insane amount of warnings that this man was dangerous. This took place in TX. Not one person stopped him with a legal fire arm so that theory is busted. God was all around them in that church and it didn’t stop the deaths. This man, like most mass murderers who use guns killed himself. So police did not do shit and he will never punished by law.

The answer is gun control. I don’t know how many more people have to die for everyone to get this through their thick skulls.

Until a gun is as registered state by state as a vehicle, this will not slow down or stop.

I will not discuss mental illness here. Why? Because this is an insult to every human being with a mental illness that would never hurt another living thing. If our government truly cared about MI, they would 100% cover all care for mental illness under insurance. They don’t.  They also recently voted to not have mental illness as a factor when registering or purchaseThis is an excuse.

Yes, pray. Yes, cry yell and scream with rage. Yes, help the victims, their loved ones and their families. Also do something to prevent this from ever happening again.

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Be Like the Elephants

I just did something I never thought I would do again. I wrote a letter to my Hometown Newspaper Editor.

I know, I’m shocked too.

I felt the message of the letter may echo true for many areas in the USA at this time.

Please enjoy. As always, comments are absolutely appreciated.
” Dear Brattleboro,

I have become disgusted & appalled by you. Horror at the heartless nature of our citizens has become a daily occurrence.

 I do not know when you first started to change but as of now you are absolutely unrecognizable.

Born in Vermont, my family moved to Brattleboro when I was 3. 

This was a family based community. Children could walk to school or to the Yellow Store for a treat without parents having to worry about their safety.

There were many communal areas like the Common Ground, where hippies roamed and made sure their neighbors bellies were fed.

The farmers market was a bustling place where you could drop $10 and have a wonderful meal while listening to an eclectic array of music, knowing you’d run into friends and family at every stand.

This is no longer that place.

Sure, the basic bones of our town are still here, intact but frail and thin.

There is an echoing of free spirit vibes and friendly soul. It is an echo from the past. The hippie blood has been gutted and drained from this town.

This voice is wavering, it’s dying down. The echoes are now lies.

I am not quite sure when it first started, but I can tell you when I first noticed the change.

When a town charges it’s poor a skyrocketing price of $15 for 3 garbage bags(which break almost immediately) you end up with people who cannot afford keep their homes clean. They are breaking bank just to maintain a basic human necessity of cleanliness.

Changing the pick up to every other week gives wildlife an extra 7 days to tear through & scatter litter all over our streets.

Second, we have a awful infestation of bugs called slumlords. People who break housing laws knowing full well that their tenants are far too poor to fight them over and over in court. They ask for insane amounts up front, keep apartments in dilapidated conditions knowing full well there is absolutely nowhere else for that tenant to rent from. When you end up with a notice of “terminating lease” because again, these parasites never seek a legal eviction, you find after vacating that the landlord is keeping every penny and charging the tenant for basic wear and tear.

I have spoken to a woman who having left an apartment in near mint condition was relieved that she only “owed” the landlord $500. Yes, he kept her entire deposit as well.

Money has become a “God” to this town. When you worship money as a false idol your “devil” becomes the poor.

I see it everywhere. Restaurants complaining about panhandlers. People moaning about why the homeless aren’t living in the shelter. People are starving, food Shelves have changed policies, allowing families to only visit monthly instead of weekly. People are barely able to survive and Brattleboro only cares about hunger once a year,  filling the Brattleboro Food Shelf during November. Happy Thanksgiving.

Yes, there are services in place. I have a wake up call for you, Brattleboro. Every single one has lost almost all funding due to the Trump administration.

There is no longer government assistance to pick up the people fallen on hard times. They have been thrown aside the garbage that litters the streets of low income housing areas.

These people matter. They have families, children with empty stomaches. They aren’t objects to be discarded away because you don’t like seeing them.

Open your eyes, Brattleboro. The stereotype of “lazy poor” is just that- a stereotype. People in poverty are some of the hardest working people you will ever meet. They do absolutely everything they can to stretch every penny and get by.

For someone with money going on a grocery run is hoping in your Subaru, driving down to the Coop, dropping between $300-500 on organic foods and loading them into your reusable bags. You may even buy a pre-cooked chicken or order a smoothie while you leisurely stroll around the beautiful store.

People in poverty do not have this pleasure. They have to work around the bus schedule, go to the most inexpensive store in our area, bring along every coupon they have clipped. Anything they were unable to pick up from their monthly foodshelf stop is purchased with a low amount of food stamps aka 3SQUARES. You are allowed $1.90 per person in your family per 3 meals a day.

Could you survive on that?

After you shop, you have to wait for the bus to come back around which could be an hour or more. Until recently, a taxi could be used at the expense of $20 a trip. Ever haul bags of groceries on and off a bus? Imagine doing so with a walker or wheelchair. Imagine doing this with a toddler.

This hatred towards the poor is absolutely inexcusable. It is not only inhumane, it is classist at its core.

You hate on people who cannot escape a system that traps them. You hate on them for not being “fiscally responsible” & blame them for robberies, drug over doses, and begging.

You should be hating the system that creates such an everlasting misery that people find their only escape is illegal substances, taking from others and having to ask over and over for help.

In the wild, often a young or injured elephant becomes trapped in a mud pit, unable to escape. A horrible starving death surly awaits them. Do the elephants leave them behind? Explain from atop the pit how they should have been more responsible, not fallen into the hole to begin with?

No. A larger, stronger elephant with climb into the hole. It stands behind the trapped elephant. It pushes them, with all of it’s might to the surface and out of that hole. Then, it grabs that elephants tail and the stronger elephant follows & climbs out of the hole.

These are your people Brattleboro. They are suffering. They are trapped in mud, turning into fossilized skeletons – yet another casualty of this awful black pit that Brattleboro has become.

What will you do, Brattleboro? Will you be less humane than wild elephants?

Brattleboro, your white privilege & classist attitude is showing.

Whether you take these words of advice and truly do something to further prevent the decay that has taken over southern Vermont, I ask you to please, extend those hands. Help people out not just on Thanksgiving or Christmas. Make this year round. Pick up the people our current government has thrown aside.

Be like the elephants”

Those Nice Guys

Recently I stumbled upon a thread online of men complaining that they go on dates with women who use them for food, drinks, clothes etc and then they never go on a date again. The guys were furious that women out there get free drinks on a date and those “poor nice guys” get absolutely nothing in return.
While I am sure there are possibly shitty women out there who play these games, the bulk of them are complaining about a different issue altogether.

They feel that if they spend money on a date, women somehow owe them in return. Meaning, sex.

“Hey, I bought you dinner & drinks. I spent money!! Why won’t you go down on me/sleep with me???”

That is fucked up 

I never show up at a date without money to pay for myself. I always offer and the date so far has always chose to pay. Some times I leave an extra tip for the wait staff, because I want to contribute.

I have NEVER used someone for a meal, for drinks etc. I think there may be people out there who behave this way, but again they are shitheads.

 Guys date a heck of a lot of shitheads for their pretty face etc. They will ignore almost any red flag if someone is hot enough. That is on you though, fellas. 

Time and time again I give my guy friends this piece of wisdom. Stop sticking it in the crazy. Stop ignoring amazing women because you may have to lower your standards on physical beauty a little bit.

I date people for their personality, for mutual interests, their intelligence & decent discussions. Number one thing I look for in a partner is someone who can consistently make me laugh. If there’s physical attraction between us that is just icing on the cake. 

 I have NEVER ignored a red flag on a date because the guy was extremely good looking. That would be a ridiculous thing to do.

Heck, I usually have my guard WAY up, to make sure I’m not about to be robbed, raped or murdered. I have friends I give a secret word to. They will call or text during the date, & I could signal secretly that I am in danger. I carry bear mace in my purse or pocket.

Once I went on a date with a super funny guy who had worked really hard to lose 150lbs. He was down to 350lbs. We had some great conversations & a fun night but unfortunately there were some chemistry issues and we ended it after a few dates.

During my 1st date with him, my father’s at the time roommate showed up at the same location. He then harassed my dad into giving him my number and texted me the rest of the night, over & over & over. I was pissed at my dad for giving in like that. Dad thought it would be better for me to tell the guy to fuck off in my own words.

When I got home, late at night, I was tidying a mess my dog had made. She had grabbed a bag of sugar and walked around my house offering it to the cats. I was able to follow a sugar trail through my entire downstairs which ended on my bed with a pile of my dogs stuffed animals.

 The roommate started to call. Asking where I went. I explained that my date was over. He asked if he could come over to my house. I said no. Why?

 1. My dad’s roommate is one of the most barbaric awful people I have ever met. I don’t give a shit that he works out every day. He is a fucking revolting narcissistic caveman who is awful to women. 

2. He has a girlfriend who LIVES WITH HIM and she happened to be out of town.

My dad’s roommate spent weeks complaining to my dad about why would I go out with a “fat lardo” and ignore him. Why wouldn’t I let him come over, because he is such a “good guy”

My advice to you men who feel that women pass over you & wondering why they don’t date nice guys, is this.

 If you are THAT worried about the money, plan to go dutch as you plan the night with your date.

Consider that YOU are pursuing the wrong type of women.

 Also consider that you aren’t such a nice guy after all.

#MeToo

I have only seen 3 men in my current feed who decided to take responsibility during this movement and shed light on #MeToo

I thank them for this, for coming forward & wanting to do better from this moment on.

Yes, men are absolutely victims too. But this issue, sexual assault/harassment/rape will not stop or go away without the help of men. If you see something, hear something etc shut it down immediately.

This shouldn’t shock anyone but most men will only listen to other cis gender white men. If you are a man, please say something because the rest of us get ignored.

I once dated a guy who every time I brought up my discomfort, my anger at something he did or said, he would immediately blow me off and say “No you didn’t/don’t.” It would shock me every time, to have another human tell me I wasn’t feeling the way I was clearly feeling.
No one out there thinks this is the behavior of all men or all women. It is enough of them that there is a serious problem. Everyone see’s the massive numbers of people coming forward with #metoo. Imagine the stories we are too scared or traumatized to tell. There are people staying silent which is there choice, they do not owe an explanation to anyone, but their silence counts. They are still victims.

I have also heard of & seen women who have shut down men who have come forward, screaming that this is a “women’s only” movement. This attitude doesn’t help anyone.

I believe that it’s absolutely awful that a woman would shut someone down on their abuse or experience just because of their sex. That is disgraceful.

I had a moment this week when I saw a man who has assaulted me join in on the #metoo but chose to use other terms to make his post different & stand out.

I was furious. It took everything in me to not scream or comment telling him off. I stayed silent because if he truly has been a victim of assault or abuse himself, that was his way of expressing it and it wasn’t my place to fight or argue with him.

This is a tough topic. It brings out serious emotions in lots of people. I understand the women who feel they need to band together for strength. I understand women who absolutely hate men because of whatever they experienced at their hands. I also know men who have been sexually abused by women and their voices matter. This is not a Male vs. Female issue. This is a serious problem with humanity.

I am not yet ready to share my story. I hope that someday I will. The fear I feel at the subject of publicly indicating the person who abused me is enough to keep me silent.

For those who have taken this time to speak out, thank you. Thank you for your bravery. You are absolutely believed. You are supported. You are loved.

For everyone in your feed who spoke up, for everyone who didn’t, men, please continue to do better 💗

#MeToo

Why aren’t Women in control of their bodies?

Government is pissing me off this week.  I honestly try to keep this space less political. This is a trigger for me.

Women are not allowed to have control over

Eliminating birth control to prevent “promiscuity”

Banning abortions after 20+ because the fetus “feels pain” while having regard for how painful this choice was for the mother. 

Let alone not giving a shit about the child once it’s out of the moms womb. 

At that point It’s on it’s own – no health care, no school lunches, no affordable college education…

Abortions after 20 weeks which is only 10% of those that take place, is like banning  all cars because a low number of people drink while  driving.

Abortions after 20 weeks are rare.

They happen because the baby is severely disabled and unable to have a life without pain or suffering. So that thing Republicans are claiming they are trying to prevent, “babies feel pain!!” they are condemning the child to live a life of pain forever.

My son was born early & with severe disabilities. None were seen on ultrasound. In the Kids cardiac unit every parent asked us when in the pregnancy we knew our child was disabled.

All those parents saw a disability & kept the pregnancy because after 20+ weeks, this is a wanted child.

 People who have no choice but to terminate because the birth defect is so severe no amount of surgery, physical therapy will help their way of life. We’re talking babies who will be on a ventilator laying comatose in a crib until they die at a young age. We’re talking moms’ who suddenly finding out their baby they prepared for is dead inside of them & they could die too if they don’t go through the abortion process.

The only reason an abortion happens after 20+ weeks is because the mom had no other choice. You are taking away her only option.

As for the birth control nonsense…

People need to understand that birth control is NOT just about sex. It is about being able to regulate, track and know when your period is going to happen. It lowers certain hormone levels so women aren’t in agonizing pain before or during their period.

Lets also bring up that women have only a certain amount of eggs we are born with. We aren’t men. We don’t make sperm until we die.

Birth control can help a women not ovulate all of her eggs at a young age (starting at 12+) so she could choose to have a family later on in life when she is in a functioning relationship.

Eliminating birth control and saying it is about promiscuity is absolute bullshit. 

That is women & their reproductive organs being seen as sex objects only.

What if young men could only ejaculate if they were reproducing a child & all other times it was illegal?

What if every time you chose to be sexually active & wanted a condom you could get 1 over the counter & it would cost you $39-50?

 What if you could only receive erection assisting pills if you had a written letter of consent from your spouse, your mother, & your pastor & a doctor could refuse if any of those opinions were that you didn’t need them?

Kind of would be terrible to have no control of your own body & how it functions, right??

The Problem with Dating Online

There’s a sickness spreading online.

 It’s not just the hatred polluting people & covering America like a thick smog.
No.

 American Men online are lashing at strangers in an attempt to degrade them into some sort of a relationship.

 This may sound generalised but there is so much truth to the words that I type.

 When I connect with men from other countries, I am never treated the way I am by the American men who respond to my ads or dating profiles.

When I don’t include what I look like in a post I get horrible responses from people about how I am probably a fat ugly cow and they will only talk to me if I include my measurements or show them my breasts. If I include photos, I get responses of “How about a blow job?” or “let’s meet and fuck.”

When I don’t include my political beliefs, I get responses of how I must be a smart sophisticated independent woman who supports Trump. Or I get lashed at by guys assuming I supported Trump.

When I post about my political beliefs, I get called stupid, ugly, whore etc from people for not supporting whatever they support.

When I don’t discuss a career, I get harassed and lashed out at by men who assume I’m on welfare and “living off the system”

 When I do ask about careers I’ve been called a gold digger.

Whatever the complaint, it truly reveals way more about the men responding to me than it ever does about me.

You wouldn’t be happy with whatever I say, because inside, they themselves are truly unhappy.

Misery spreads – it is these men who are destroying opportunities & possible relationships for the few good men still out there. I am not counting the men who feel the need to flaunt & shout from their basement apartments how they are “good guys”

The true good guy never talks about being a good guy because inside he is completely convinced he is a horrible human being. 

“How do you know he is a good guy then” you may ask.

His friends, his family, they all speak about his actions on his behalf. You can see that goodness radiate from his being. It penetrates deep, and sticks with you. 

Those few good men, they grab at your heart & soul,  even from afar – like a strong liquor you swallowed down too quickly. The warmth spreads through out you. Your center feels the licks from the flame.

Yes, there are still a few good men – but they are being overshadowed by those straight white males, behaving like howler monkies, banging on their chests about “alphas”, how women are keeping them down in that pit of despair- all the while forgetting that if it weren’t for that woman who suffered through hours of agonizing labor, they would not be here.

That same woman (or possible some other who is now stuck for life, shackled to his side) cleans his filthy drawers, restocks his mini fridge with sugary drinks & may even work her hands to the bone so he can sleep peacefully with a roof over his head.

For you out there, wondering which category of man you neatly fit under – turn and ask that person sitting beside you. They most likely will assure you that yes, you are one of those few good men.

Only you can truly reflect, look inside yourself & ask – Are they lying?

Dottie the Polar Bear Cub – a Children’s Story

A while back I posted the first part of a children’s story I wrote. It was written after the death of my grandmother. Unfortunately, she and I were never too close and other than a once a year visit we never spent too much time together. This wasn’t her fault or mine, but was due to my mother who chose to separate herself from that side of our family.

After her death, I knew I wanted to write something in her memory but I didn’t know what animal I wanted to focus on. My family is originally from NYC so I quickly went online to scan through the central park zoo. That’s when I learned that the Polar bear at the zoo was named Ida, the name of my grandma Dot’s twin sister who had also passed.

It felt like a sign.

Please enjoy, Dottie the Polar Bear Cub 💗

Dottie the Polar Bear Cub
Dottie the polar bear cub was completely content. She loved her home. Dottie loved climbing all the rocks. She loved climbing up to the highest point and jumping into the pool of water, making a big splash. Her mommy would get angry whenever Dottie climbed too high, but Dottie didn’t listen.

 It was too much fun!
Dottie also loved her blue ball. She would tackle it, jump on to it, and play catch with her daddy. She loved wrestling with her daddy and climbing on her mother’s back.

Dottie loved feeding time too, because visitors would come into her home. Dottie loved all the humans who came to play.  They usually had treats or toys. Sometimes they would poke and prod at Dottie, but the fishy treats she got afterwards for being a “good girl” always made her happy.
Her habitat also had a giant window. People would come visit, just so they could see Dottie, her mother said.
Dottie loved to make a big show for the people. Especially the little tiny humans that were her size. They wore things over their bodies that her mother said were to keep them warm. The humans only had fur on their heads. Some of the daddy humans had hair on their faces and none on their heads. Dottie thought this was very silly. She would walk up to the big window and make faces, throw her ball, splash the window and just be silly. Sometimes she asked the little humans to come play, but her mommy and daddy said they couldn’t come in.

One day, after Dottie had a big breakfast and lunch and a long swim she decided to walk past the window to see what humans had come to visit that day. She saw that there was no one looking in. This made Dottie sad. She decided that maybe she would go take a nap in the cave with daddy, she after all had a big long morning!
Just then, Dottie heard a knock on the big window. She turned around to see a little human girl stand at the window knocking. But there was something different about this girl. She had something on her paws, something bright and pink!

Dottie quickly ran across the habitat. She had to get a closer look!
Dottie walked right up to the little girl, placed her paws on the glass and called to her.
“Hey! Little human! What is that on your paws?”
The little girl giggled and called to her mommy. “Look Mommy, the baby polar bear likes me!”
Dottie knew that humans had a hard time speaking polar bear, so she tried again.
“Hey, little girl! What’s that on your paws? I like them!”
Dottie’s mother and father stuck there head out of the cave when they heard the commotion. Dottie’s mommy called to her.
“Dottie, come here! Stay away from the people!”
“No,”  Dottie said, disobeying her mother. “I want those! I want to see her paw covers!”

Dottie’s mommy came down from the cave. She circled Dottie to protect her from the crowd that was forming.
“Dottie, sweetie, you don’t need those. Humans don’t have fur or protective pads on their hands and feet. They need to wear those covers, or mittens, on their hands to protect from the cold.”
Dottie’s daddy came down from the cave.
“Dottie, you are a polar bear. We don’t wear clothes. Forget the mittens and come here, it’s nap time.”

Dottie’s mommy and daddy lead her back to the cave.
She laid down in between her mommy and daddy and started to doze. As she fell asleep, she mumbled “We’ll see about that!”
As she slept, Dottie’s dream was filled with mittens. Mittens of every size, shape and color. Some had patterns and textures. In the dream Dottie dove into a pile of mittens, giggling as they flew everywhere.
When Dottie awoke, it was the middle Daisy Lowe the night. Her parents were still fast asleep in the cave. Dottie knew that one way or another she would find herself a pair of mittens!
Dottie knew there was a hole that food was pushed through. It was too small for a grown polar bear, but just the right size for little Dottie to squeeze through!

Dottie pushed herself through the flap covering the hole. It was a snug fit, but with a few wiggles and kicks, Dottie made it through.
Dottie recognized the room right away. This was the place where the zoo keeper gave her shots, and weighed her on a scale. This was also the room with the yummy fishy treats!

Dottie didn’t have time for treats. She was on a mission! Dottie pushed open the door and headed out into the center of the zoo.
She saw the other exhibits that surrounded her. Penguins, seals, even some fish! Dottie walked past all the sleeping mammals, birds, amphibians, and other creatures.

The zoo was quiet at night. Peaceful and beautiful. Every now and then she heard the sounds of the other creatures there.
Suddenly, in the corner of an exhibit, right next to a trash can, she saw it! They were white and red with some blue. They fit perfectly on her paws!
Dottie was so happy with her find. Her midnight search was a success!
Dottie ran back to her habitat as quickly as her little legs and arms would carry her. She snuck back in through the food shaft, climbed up to the cave and snuggled back in between her mom and dad.

The next day the Zookeeper was preparing his walk around the zoo. Every morning he liked to walk around and visit every creature in the zoo. As he was walking towards the Lion exhibit one of the workers ran to him.
“Allen, quick! You need to come to the polar bear exhibit “You’re not going to believe this….”
The zookeeper ran to the exhibit and saw a crowd of people “Oohing and Aweing” over the polar bears. Lights flashed as pictures were taken.
The zoo keeper made his way through the crowd excusing himself as he parted the large group of adults and children in front of the window.
That’s when he saw it.
“Why does the baby polar bear have cups on her front paws?” He asked the polar bear feeder, Bill.
“We don’t know!” Bill said. “We have no idea how she would have gotten ahold them!”
“Well, go take them off, and check the exhibit. Maybe someone was throwing trash in the exhibits.”

Dottie was very upset when her mittens were taken away. She tried to explain to the humans that she wanted them there, that her mittens weren’t hurting her. But the humans didn’t understand polar bear and took them away, calling her a very silly polar bear.
Dottie knew she had to get another pair of mittens.

That night, when her parents were asleep, Dottie snuck out of her habitat for a second time. She wiggled through the food shoot, opened the door and went back to the center of the zoo. Dottie walked farther this time, past the snakes, the lizards, the birds, all the way to the flamingos.
Dottie quickly discovered that flamingos are very smelly. The stench was overwhelming. Dottie sat down and put her paws over her little nose. She looked around searching for mittens.  And that’s when she found it. They were white and red striped. When she stuck them on her paws she could smell something yummy and she got salt on her nose. But they fit perfectly, and that was all that mattered. Dottie was so excited! She quickly ran back to her habitat as fast as her little paws were take her. She pushed through the door, climbed down the food shoot, climbed the rocks to the cave, crawled between her mommy and daddy and fell fast asleep.

The next morning Zookeeper Allen was walking towards the gorillas when Veterinarian Sonja ran to him.
“Allen, come quickly! You have to go see the polar bear exhibit!”
“Oh no, not again!” Allen thought, as he ran to the polar bears.
There was a bigger crowd around the polar bears today. The flashing lights made Allen see spots as he made his way through the crowd.
Allen looked through the window. That’s when he saw it.
“Why does the baby polar bear have popcorn containers on her front paws?”
“I don’t know!” Said Sonja. “I went in to check Dottie’s weight, but she ran from me! We can’t get them off of her, she just runs away!”
“We need to find out how trash is getting into the exhibit. Please make a sign and put it on the window.”
The zookeeper wasn’t convinced that visitors were throwing trash into the exhibit. Allen decided that he would spend the night and watch the polar bears to see how the little cub was getting a hold of all this garbage.

Dottie was very upset that the humans had once again taken away her mittens. Dottie had put up a fight! She ran all over the rocks, yelling to them “No, these are my mittens!” But the humans didn’t understand polar bear. Eventually she was cornered by three caretakers. They grabbed her, took off the popcorn containers, patted her head and called her a “very silly polar bear”
Dottie sulked for the rest of the day in the cave. That night, when her mommy and daddy had finally fallen asleep, Dottie the polar bear snuck out of her exhibit for a third time.

This time Dottie turned left to explore another part of the zoo. She walked past the gorillas, the orangutans, and lemurs. It was hot in this part of the zoo! Dottie knew she couldn’t stay long in this area. She sat down and looked around quickly, trying to find a pair of mittens. That’s when she saw it!
There it was, lying on a bench all by itself. Some little child must have dropped it or taken it off and forgotten to grab it. There on the bench was a small bright orange knit mitten. There was only one and she didn’t really like to color, but Dottie didn’t care! Finally, a proper mitten!

Allen the Zookeeper had been camping out outside of the polar bear exhibit. Imagine his surprise when a baby polar bear strolled out of the backroom of the polar bear exhibit! Instead of grabbing Dottie and putting her back in the habitat, Zookeeper Allen chose instead to follow the little cub and see where she was getting all the trash. Allen kept his distance, tip toeing and staying silent. He followed the cub past the gorillas, past the orangutans and lemurs. Then he finally caught up to Dottie. He found her on the ground, struggling to put an orange mitten on her left paw.

Zookeeper Allen laughed loudly.
“So that’s what this has been about? You want a pair of mittens!” Allen picked up the polar bear cub and carried her back to the back room of the Polar Bear exhibit. He placed her on the ground. Dottie knew she was busted. She quickly slipped into the food shoot. Zookeeper Allen laughed again. He moved a chair to block the shoot and left the room. Allen had to go talk to his wife about a special project.

Dottie the polar bear cub was very sad. Ever since she was caught out of the habitat the Zookeeper and other zoo workers had made sure to block the food shoot every night. The little polar bear had no way of sneaking out of the exhibit at night and her mommy and daddy were keeping a close eye on her during the day. Dottie was no longer happy in her habitat. She no longer played with her blue ball. She no longer climbed up the big rocks and jumped into the pool. Dottie sat in the corner all by herself instead of looking out the big window. Even when daddy wanted to play she would wander off into the cave to sulk.

Allen was worried about the little cub. She wasn’t as active as before. She wasn’t climbing and jumping or playing with the animal handlers.
But Allen knew that he soon would have a special present for the little cub.

The day finally came! The zookeeper knew what a big day it was so he took an announcement out in the local newspaper.

“We are having a party! Come celebrate our beautiful polar bear cub Dottie! We are giving her a wonderful gift, and want you there to help surprise her!”

The crowd was huge outside the Polar Bear Exhibit. There were banners and colorful balloons. There were little humans with their faces pressed against the glass, hoping to spot a polar bear.
Once the clock struck 12:00pm Zookeeper Allen entered the Polar Bear habitat. Using the microphone on his collar Allen spoke to the crowd as Polar Bear handlers made sure that everyone was safe.
Allen walked over to little Dottie who was sitting in a corner.
“Come here” he said quietly, motioning to Dottie. “I have a present for you!”

He placed a red wrapped package in front of her. Dottie approached Allen, and patted at the package. The color was fun, and she liked the crinkle noise. Dottie wrestled with the package while Allen spoke to the audience.

“Dottie the polar bear was born 5 months ago. She was 2 lbs, blind, and yes, very cute. The first time I held her, she couldn’t see yet. I wrapped her in a blanket, and she smiled. I have told this to other zookeepers, who tell me that polar bears can’t smiled. But this little girl smiled.
Our polar bear habitat is very important. We use it to teach the general public about polar bears and their home.

 Currently there are approximately 25,000 Polar bears in the Arctic, but this number is dwindling.  Global warming is affecting the poles twice as fast as it is here. This means that ice is melting earlier and Polar bears are not getting enough food.
Polar bears are clever, and while they are very cute, they are also extremely dangerous in the wild. As you can see, I have many professional handlers around me to help with safety.”

Dottie had almost ripped into the box, so Allen knew he had to hurry along with his story. Zookeeper Allen then told the crowd the story of little Dottie the cub. How for three nights in a row she snuck through a feeding shoot out of her habitat and into the big scary zoo all by herself. But she wasn’t scared. Instead she explored. He told the audience about the soda cups on her paws. They laughed, and laughed even harder when they found out about the popcorn buckets.
And then he got to the end, where he described how he found her, cute little Dottie, wrestling with the orange glove, trying desperately to put on the mitten.

“And today I am very proud to present Dottie the Polar Bear with her very own custom mittens!”
Dottie stopped playing with the box. She saw it. The box had tipped over and something fell out. They were purple knit with silver strands knit through. Dottie was so excited she couldn’t contain herself! She shouted out, which sounded like a grunt to the humans around her. “Mittens! I have mittens!!!!”
She ran in circles, pranced her way to Allen the Zookeeper and pawed at his shoes.
A handler approached the two of them and picked Dottie up.
“Here you go, Dottie,” The Zookeeper said
 Picking up the mittens, he then placed them on her paws. They put Dottie down, and she jumped and pranced and tackled her blue ball. Dottie was happy again.

And from that day on, unless she was jumping into the water, Dottie wore her mittens. As she grew, she was given bigger pairs. The zoo kept all the mittens and hung them in an exhibit that told the story of the clever and silly polar bear. Dottie was forever happy and content. She never wandered out of her habitat again.

The End.

Fables once occupied the woods, but recently all the property and lands were bought up by large Nonfiction faceless corporations .The families believed they were blessed as they all finally had the income to move out of the forest and into the modern world.

Once the fables joined modern day society a law was passed across the States.

Segregation became common. If you were a fable, you no longer were permitted at state or federal funded public schools. Restaurants, churches and communities were left up to the owners or public debate.

To enter the Storytown School for the Feeble Minded, Women, Insane, Backwards or Fabled

You had to cross a line of screaming protestors. The signs were waved frantically while incoherent slurs and insults were flung.

*They Aren’t Real, They’re Just Characters*

 *Go Back To the Woods!!*

*Leviticus 11:12!!!!*

“If only there were woods to go back to” Ella thought. She passed through the crowd daily, head held high. She stepped proudly, and ignored the screams. That’s when some bastard hit her in the back of the head with an egg.

She spun around, frantic , high tops slipping on yolk from previously missed targets.

“That poof ball on your head was easy to hit, you story trash!!” the man shouted, his face flushed red from exertion.

“I’m guessing that’s the most exercise you’ve gotten in years, Non!!” She shouted.

Ella gripped her books and ran into the school, immediately running for the girls room, to inspect the damage done to her beautiful brown locks.

The sink ran brown, then red and slowly faded to a clear that signaled it may be safe to wash her hands or possibly even her hair.

She took off the small gold crown that held her bun in place.

Ella was once a princess. Look how far she had fallen.

When Ella was 6 her father, a Wealthy man, had fallen ill and passed away quickly one night at his desk. Ella had no other relatives. Her entire inheritance lay in a vault she had no access to until the age of 21. Until she was of age, Ella was in the care of an all girls foster home run by strict nuns. It’s name was the Uglistep House. Ella hated the Uglistep Sisters with all her might.

Ella rinsed egg out of her hair. She wrung out the sections, put her hair back in a bun and placed the crown.

She stared at the mirror, her hands upon the sink.

“This is just for now. This isn’t forever. It will get better.”

A stall opened suddenly which caused Ella to jump.

“Were the herds still BAAAAing?” Mary asked, approaching a sink to wash her hands.

 “One hit me with an egg”

“Oh, they’re throwing produce now? That’s new. Usually my brother gets hit with rocks.”

Mary grabbed a paper towel and rolled it into a ball.

“All I want to do is hit them back, but J.J won’t let me. He says not to stupe to their level. I don’t consider it stuping if they are the ones setting the bar…” She threw the ball into the waste basket.

“J.J is right. You are so much more than this. You could march every single one of those people off a cliff like lemmings. But you shouldn’t , because you are better than that.”

Mary smirked. Her actions at her last school helped to form her reputation at Storytown school.

Once after being bullied by a group of kids for her slightly morbid fashion sense , Mary hypnotized an entire herd of sheep. In their zombified state they followed her to school one day where they proceeded to disrupt every classroom in the building. 

Now Mary wasn’t allowed around farm animals and kept away from large groups of stupid people.

Mary, who’s father was half Fable half NonFiction married her Fable witch mother. Their mixed family wasn’t truly accepted by either Fable or Non communities, making Mary and J.J school outcasts.

As Mary’s hand grabbed the handle, the bathroom door swung open.

Golden locks of curls and not much else, were outlined by the bright morning sunshine streaming through a large window across the hall.

Goldie had her usual crowd of girls around her as she walked in, leading the pack.

While she looked the part of a popular teenage girl, Ella had to remind herself that Goldie was at  THIS school for a reason, and she wasn’t a Fable.

Until the age of 12 Goldie had lived in the forest, raised by whatever wild animals took pity on her.

One day she stumbled upon the log cabin belonging to a polygamist trio of bears.

When PaPa, MaMa, and their lover Baybae came back from their date night, they found their beautiful home in shambles, their fridge raided and a small child piddling in the corner, marking her territory.

PaPa was the first to stop screaming and try to approach the child. He held out cookies, calling out to her while she shook and shivered with fear 

“Here, Goldie, Goldie, Goldie….”

The three bears continued with their usual hip and posh lives. Every night they set the dinner table with a place for Goldie. She hid behind the couch and watched closely.

By day 7 Goldie walked into the room, sat down in a chair, picked up a fork and joined her family.

The Bears watched quietly.

“Oh, look honey! She thinks she’s people….”

The Bears adopted Goldie. While she was kept more like a toy poodle than a child, Goldie loved her new clothes, consistent  supply of food, and expensive life style. While she loved all her dad’s and mom, Goldie clearly was the closest to PaPa who spoiled her often.

The Locks family were one of the first to move from the woods. Goldie’s parents believed it was best for Goldie to grow up surrounded by her culture, stating over and over “It’s the right thing to do…”

Mary and J.J’s dad had fought for weeks with the neighborIng bear family as their property touched. Shouting matches occurred daily over who owned which trees and what roots were connected to which property.

 Mary was happy to no longer live next door to Goldie.

Since the Bears were the first to sell, buildings quickly rose to the sky next to them. Cabin by cabin was replaced with steel monstrosities and belching factories.

J.J’s and Mary’s family held out the longest, but they too signed over their home and moved to the modern world.

Goldie wasn’t in public school for very long. The most expensive clothes in the world couldn’t hide that Goldie still had some serious triggers from her previous animal lifestyle. Bells would send Goldie into a frothing fit. Locker slams caused her to whimper or howl.

Goldie was now a student at the Storytime School under the label “Woman, Insane.” Her money helped her rise quickly in popularity. Girls anxiously waited at the bottom for the hand me down crumbs she scattered.

Weekly visits with the school psychiatrist Dr O’Hare helped to train Goldie. She learned new coping methods. Now at the ring of the school bell the most you saw from Goldie at her desk was a facial twitch. Yes, Goldie sure looked like a normal, popular, rich, pretty girl. Everyone knew different and chose to err on the side of caution.

Mary left the washroom, rather than continuing to stand there viewing the gaggle of make up applying girls and breathing in the fumes of hair spray flying through the air.

As she turned down the hall to class she couldn’t help but stare at the frail girl in the wheelchair, skin blue tinted, pale. Her arms hung low, her entire lower half covered by a grey blanket that had photo realistic legs pictured on the front. A bubbling noise erupted from the tank device attached to the back of the wheel chair . Tubes wound around the girl’s nose and mouth, allowing her to breath in the water on land.

A large Jamaican nurse wheeled the girl everywhere, even accompanied her to class. He was always a few inches away, ready to intervene at the sudden case of a medical emergency. A sudden cough, twitch of the hand, head or arm, sent the tall man into quick action. Having him in the school was often handy. The man acted as a on hand translator as the breathing device, the noise of the bubbles and the girl’s muffled voice accompanied by her severe exhaustion made talking quite difficult.

Mary stared too long, her gaze connected with the red head’s eyes. The large Nurse and the frail girl stared back in silence. The bubbling noise echoed down the hall.

To save herself any more humiliation, Mary hurried by, grunting a polite greeting to them both in passing.

“Hello, Sebastian. Hi iReaeL….”

As she opened the door to her first class, Mary couldn’t help but take one last look.

This was the first aquatic exchange student to enter their school. Her fascination with merpeople was only enhanced by the student addition. She could see the mermaid’s tail poking out from behind the blanket, a trail of wet drips spotted the floor creating a trail that was easy to follow. Mary noticed a fish swimming around the attached tank, seeming blissfully unaware. She pondered the advantages or disadvantages of having a fish swimming in your breathing apparatus. Or perhaps, the fish was a pet.

**********

First of all, her name wasn’t iReaeL. Every student and staff member pronounced the little mermaid’s name wrong. It wasn’t their fault, they were trying so hard to be polite and accommodating. She was the first merperson at Storytown School, it was a great honor! No, the people were not at fault for this error. They assumed her name was strange due to her sea heritage . It wasn’t. The mistake could all be traced back to her first school introduction, her nurse and his ridiculously heavy accent.

The mermaid’s presence hadn’t gone unnoticed . Rumors spread like oil across the top of the ocean. None of the information was accurate or true, just hate filled mutters of ignorant individuals.

The new addition to the signs out front was a scathing insult towards her. This knowledge didn’t slip past the mermaid. While quiet and unable to speak in large coherent sentences, this did not at all limit her intelligence. At just 14 the little mermaid had been at the top of her class. Her thoughts moved quicker than she could express herself on land.

At the discovery of merpeople, devoted religious humans quickly dove down to spread their message of Christ. Having skimmed the reading material, the mermaid had a fascination with the religious beliefs of other cultures, she knew the passage well.

 “Anything living in water that does not have fins and scales is to be regarded as unclean by you”

The little mermaid had both fins and scales. She had gills as well, but that wasn’t mentioned. The passage originally meant that if you followed the religion, you personally, could not eat shellfish.

Hate and prejudice fueled the new meaning, a dirty lie spread by Non-fiction individuals trying to prevent mixed relationships. The old belief that mermaids or mermen all were product of a human sleeping with a fish. Her mother wasn’t a fish!

 

Had her Merman father slept with fish? As The Sea King often said to his daughters’ embarrassment  “Everyone experiments in college…”

She however was a pure blooded mermaid and quite proud. Her mother had died in birth, after laying her giant egg sack, leaving The Sea King to raise his 6 daughters’ all on his own. The sign outside perpetuated a stereotype. Every ignorant person or creature who passed by and read that sign upon entering the school had this information absorbed into their brain. She wasn’t a sophisticated, smart Daughter of The Sea King here. The little mermaid was a half fish- half human unclean handicapped sea monster in their eyes, followed everywhere by a hulkingly large, unintelligible nurse.

The little mermaid couldn’t express any of these complex feelings or thoughts verbally. She had no voice on land.

*********

Age 15 was a magical year in a merperson’s life.

You were legally an adult. You could vote, have access to blowfish and other intoxicants, and as long as your 90 hours of military or community service were complete you were eligible as a land exchange student for 1 year.

The little mermaid had spent her childhood fantasizing, researching and preparing for her time on the surface. Every merperson who returned she hunted down and interviewed. She pried every piece of information from them that she could.

“It was incredible.”

“I was so popular …. Everyone wanted to be my friend.”

“Everything is so different , it was amazing.”

“It takes some adjustment – not for me through, I picked everything up quickly.”

“It’s not for the weak! You have to be prepared for danger at every turn”

There was one thing she couldn’t grasp. Why did they all return?

Since the exchange had first taken place over 60 years ago, not one 15 year old merperson had chosen to stay on the surface. They all returned to the sea.

Everyone had their reason. It sounded like an excuse to her.

Dangerous? What was more dangerous than a shark suddenly appearing on the grade school playground.

Adjustment? She was like water. Every challenge the mermaid faced she smiled through. There was no fear, just excitement and wonder.

And weak. She smiled. Her secret trips to the surface and her last incredible find hadn’t been for the faint of heart.

The little mermaid had found a beautiful treasure sunken down in the deep sand after a huge storm one night. Often after big storms she would sneak out to unoccupied areas in the deep ocean. She would scavenge, keeping track of her archeological finds.

Last one was the biggest item she had ever moved.

A large marble statute had fallen from a ship above. The white and black swirls were beautiful alone. It was the carved face that stopped her, breathless. He was beautiful, the long legs meant he was from the surface. The hair looked as though she could run her fingers through -an amazing effect in solid marble.

She had to have it for her collection.

It took the whole day. The mermaid persisted through the pain. Little by little, she pushed the statue across the sandy ocean bottom pausing only to stop and navigate a safe path or shift towards a new direction. It took hours. The shadows passed above, she could track her time and progress. Finally, the mermaid reached the cave where she hid all of her treasured items.

Story Time: My Custody Battle

In VT, 57% of abusers (serious abuse, possibly spent jail time) still have visitation rights and even full or partial custody due to a ruling of “Just because they abused their partner does not mean they will abuse their kid/s”

I am all for equal parenting rights  but those numbers are insane. Imagine having to hand your children over to someone who seriously abused you for a weekend-whole week long.

Terrifying.

He was violent. He would wait for people to be out of earshot or when we were alone to whisper or say horrible, emotionally and mentally abusing things. He would do so in front of our son.

He was in the local sheriffs dept. Often he brought a weapon or asp along to exchanges and would lift his shirt towards my direction or tap the weapon and lock eyes with me.

I was told to be careful what I say around him, to not set him off or start a fight. I started bringing 1-2 people along on the weekly exchanges so I could feel safe. He did everything he could in court to prevent this. Anyone I brought along suddenly had to go through a screening process to be eligible to be at the exchange.

Every horrible dirty thing you could do, he did (bring up depression, indicated I did all types of drugs *I am 100% clean* shaved my child’s head after I payed for hair cuts, every cut somehow was a mark against my parenting even ones that occurred at daycare, he got married secretly within 5 months so his new wife could seek custody, he fought me for custody and visitations then joined the army and disappeared for a year….) It was hell.

No matter what game or dirty tactic was used, I refused to do the same. No matter how much I was angered or hurt by the false accusations, I wouldn’t do the same.

There was in fact a time I stayed silent and shouldn’t have. It is one of my only true regrets in life.

A week before we separated permanently He told me about his depression. He said he was so depressed and numb that he would put the barrel of his gun to his temple…. Pause. Then decide against the action.

I immediately advised that he see a therapist or a psychiatrist. I urged him to talk to my therapist who could possible suggest someone he could see. He walked out and we never discussed it again.

I only ever confided to one friend about this incident. She urged me to bring it up in court. After all, he was attempting to get a judge to release all of my mental health records.

I said no. I fully believe that mental illness, like physical, needs to be treated. It also shouldn’t prevent someone from a relationship with their child (the exception being if the person is a danger to others)

I did not want a moment of weakness during a state of depression to prevent him from a relationship with our child.

I was wrong. I should have said something.

He committed suicide. 

After all that. All that pain, suffering, turmoil, years dragging me through a court room, and he was the one with a substance abuse problem(if you consider marijuana a substance to be abused. I was however worried about his drinking) and serious depression.

It’s been 6 six years and I am still not fully recovered. I also have much love for him as the father of my child, but have none for our relationship as a couple or for the years in court.

Good luck to everyone and your children who may be going through a similar situation. Be strong, don’t play games or seek to hurt your ex partner and always do what’s absolutely best for the child.

Why is Paid Maternity/Paternity Leave Important?

Some people out there don’t know about my son’s rough start.

When G was born early, I had luckily just started my maternity leave, hoping for a month to prepare.  G arrived less than a week later. What a surprise!! My health insurance had finally started, 3 days before.

I had to quit my job because we were then in and out of hospitals with him until G was 3 months old. G couldn’t breastfeed, and I had to stay near by to pump and care for him. Then, we had to go to Boston for a month for G’s open heart surgery, so G’s dad had to leave his job as well (What was he going to do, NOT be with his 3 month old who was having open heart surgery??) We ended up not going home until G was 5 months old.

So there we were, two brand new parents, no income, forced to drain our savings so we could be with our baby while he healed from his surgery. We lived in strangers houses or slept on cots in the parents wing of Boston Children’s Hospital if they weren’t filled. There was a group shower area to use, but I was usually too uncomfortable to use it without Alex, I didn’t even sleep in the woman’s section, at night I would sneak into the men’s cot area and curl up next to Alex. The McDonalds house had no openings and we couldn’t afford a hotel. 

DHMC had the Davids house which became our second home while in Lebanon NH, and they had food we could eat to save money (Chef Boyardi, soups, oatmeal and an insane amount of sweets, cakes and cookies donated from a local BJ Wholesale)

We lived off of food donations to the parents section at the hospital. We spent our days wandering the vast hospitals halls and wings or cuddling with G on a chair and watching hours of tv in between check ins with doctors and nurses.

This is not any easy life. Parents who put their entire lives on pause for the health of their children, they are out there. New ones every day. It is terrifying, lonely, exhausting and amplifies anxieties. The added stress of less or suddenly no income is just the match that lights the dynamite.

Paid maternity/paternity leave is extremely important and would have made a HUGE difference in our lives. This would make a difference in lives across the United States. Now is the time to catch up with all the countries that are so far ahead of us when it comes to the treatment of its citizens. Lets take care of our people who are in need and not discard them during their struggle.

It’s a dark, scary world out there. We will only survive if we all stick together.