Friday, March 31, 2006

More about Exodus

A previous post on this blog talked briefly about Exodus International. While idly surfing around the internet last night, reading the Ex Gay Watch blog I happened upon a link to this poor young man's blog: Chronicles of an ex-Ex-Gay. This man is detailing his life during and after "repairative therapy" (the practice of attempting to brainwash gay women & men into believing that they are merely confused heterosexuals). From just reading his experiences, it is obvious that this poor soul has been deeply wounded by this supposed "therapy" and now he is taking the first courageous steps to completely reject all that he was indoctrinated with while institutionalized with these mind-butchers. He's not even out of the closet yet, which makes it that much harder to deal with the feelings of self-hatred and unnatural conflict. I will pray for him and hope that he pulls through OK. I really identify with this poor fellow because he is an example of what could have happened to me if I hadn't been able to stand up to my own parents and resist their attempts to force me into this same sort of treatment center.

I find it interesting that Exodus and other anti-gay organizations are quick to tout dubious statistics concerning long-term "cures" that they have brought about in the lives of supposedly former homosexuals. Yet they mention nothing of the statistics on the extraordinarily high rates of suicide and mental illness following this treatment. Just another example of how ignorance is a powerful and dangerous tool of control.

In truth, sometimes it shames me to be identified as a Christian, or at least lumped in with the fundamentalist form of my religion. What really irks me is the fact that Christianity can be such a positive, peaceful, and accepting religion for those who embrace it in it's true spirit. It can also be a tool for change and understanding, but it has been corrupted and misrepresented by those with a self-serving agenda for power, control, and personal gain.
I truly think that if they don't wake up and embrace more progressive philosophies, all fundamentalist religions will be the death of a large portion of mankind and eventually the death of themselves.

Cute Overload

As featured by BoingBoing some time ago: Cute Overload has so many cutesy pictures and smarmy words that you may go,"Awwwwwwwwwww"... then you'll wonder why the heck you're looking at a website like this, don't you have anything better to do?

Wednesday, March 29, 2006


I recently showed this photo to a friend and jokingly tried to convince him that it is a fixer-upper home I am thinking of buying.

I spent most of last year hiking around the local woods, exploring new paths, experiencing nature, and escaping life for a while. I saw so many beautiful sights and wildlife that I regretted having only stories to bring back to my friends. I resolved that I would get a digital camera with my next tax return. Now that I have one, I have been snapping photos of my favorite scenery.
A couple of weeks ago, I took one of my long hikes up around the back of Mt. Arrowhead (the mountain overlooking Claremont). The trail traverses many beautiful areas, woodlands interspersed with ponds, streams, open meadows, and old, defunct farmlands.

My chosen terminus for this hike was a leg of the trail that branches back down to the Chestnut St. Extension, roughly a mile outside of the Claremont suburbs. About 50 yards from the road, there are 2 old barns. The one featured in this picture looks to be much older than the one in the background (which is also looking like it will tumble any day now). It was fully erect last year and I had hoped to get pictures of it before it fell in, but I decided that I like the look of this one after years of obvious neglect sealed it's fate. I think there is a subtle, natural beauty about a tumbled-in building that is being reclaimed by the earth. I liken it to the life-cycle of one who has lived a rich, productive existence and has come full circle to their dying day in old age. A little sad, but also serene and beautiful.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Pet Peeve List.

Several friends and acquaintances of mine have blogged a running list of pet peeves that they add to from time to time... and what a good idea it is. So here is the start of mine:

Pet peeve #1 - A person who asks you the same question over and over again in a short span of time, somehow expecting the answer to be different (because they didn't like the truthful answer that they were given the first time). I frequently encounter these when dealing with customers at work and they drive me to teeth-grinding distraction. It is like being locked in a telephone booth with rain man. I believe I once heard a line in a movie that gave this as the definition of insanity:"doing the same thing over and over again with the expectation of a differing results". I wonder if this could also be the causative factor of some insanity instead of just a manifestation.

Growing and learning...

At this time of year last year, I was in very bad shape, in many ways. I was overweight, frustrated, self-hating, and living in a stagnant, self-destructive relationship with a guy who (I would later find out) had been cheating on me for a long time. To make a long story short, we parted company and I have been slowly clawing my way out of this chronic depression. I am opposed to the pharmaceutical companies' game of taking a pill for everything, so I decided to fight the depression on my own with no medication. This has required that I take better care of myself, force myself to be less tolerant of destructive outside influences, be more mindful of bad emotional patterns, exercise more, and eat a healthier diet.

Life has come a long way since this time last year. My mind is expanding again, I've lost weight, my mental focus has returned, and I am learning to open up and be human again. I see all sorts of people around me who have been trapped in the same problems that I've been in; some are winning the game, some are losing. I try to help them where I can, but life has also taught me when to walk away from a problem that I can't fix. I am starting to regain the consciousness that I had 4 years ago, before the bad relationship. This is a good thing. May it continue to be.

The ACLU kicks arse again!

Check this out...

This fellow parodied a billboard put up by Exodus International (a homophobic organization that still holds onto the arachaic & thoroughly disproven philosophy that one can change their sexuality). As is the standard behavior for offended religious whack-jobs, they sent him a legalistic nasty-gram ordering him to take down the image from his blog. He then got in touch with the ACLU and they helped him to completely embarass Exodus in a public fashion, using nothing more than logic and the letter of the law. This is especially significant for me because my own parents attend Exodus meetings in hopes that I will be "cured" of my homosexuality.

Thanks ACLU! I think I know which organization I'll be donating more money to at some point soon :) .

Monday, March 27, 2006

First Entry

Hello all. I see the number of blogs on the internet growing at an astronomic pace. I've been procrastinating on starting one of my own because one of my biggest faults is that I tend to take on more projects than I can handle. My life has calmed down and simplified as of lately, thus leaving me time to start and maintain this blog. I'm not sure how many people would actually find my thoughts interesting and if so, what does that say about them? Some would consider me and my life to be boring, but I think it is colorful, creative, calm, stable, and low-drama. Just the way I like it.

I've chatted with quite a few bloggers who liken blogging to some form of therapy, akin to keeping a diary, except that people are free to read this diary at will. Maybe this will be a productive tool for offering up the monsters in my head to everyone else. Haha, I hope they gnaw at your brain >:P ENJOY!!! :)

The space below will simply serve as a cupboard for commonly used images and backgrounds on this blog and they likely won't make a whole lot of sense unless viewed in their proper context, so just ignore them.