March, 2013
Archive

  • 4 Reasons Why Monsanto Can Go Screw Itself

    The Monsanto Protection Act passed through congress, and came out as a wet stinky fart on the other end.  This means that GMO seeds are protected from any litigation involving health risks.  That is strange right? If you were confident in the product you are forcing down the throats of billions of people world wide, then why would you be concerned about lawsuits involving health risks?

    Monsanto and the government have been in bed for many administrations, doing very naughty things- probably involving butt plugs and choking.  There has been a revolving door between Monsanto, the FDA, and the court system (including Clarence Thomas of The Supreme Court) that has helped allow Monsanto to have a monopoly on our entire food system.  Monsanto’s contribution to countless campaigns has solidified their position, and time and time again the government will protect them over the welfare of the people and the planet.

    As a parent, not only would I rather feed my kid organic bear barf than GMOs, I genuinely fear a future that continues to allow one company to have unregulated endless control over such a vital resource.

    So Monsanto, as far as I am concerned, you can go fuck yourself – and here are my reasons why.

    1)  Seed patenting:  Monsanto patents all its seeds, and genetically engineers the suicide gene so every year the crop dies and the seeds are rendered useless.  Where for thousands of years farmers would save seeds and cultivate a variety of strands to help maintain bio diversity, Monsanto now forces farmers to use their one “terminator seed” that they have to purchase annually.  Buy patenting’s seeds, Monsanto owns life, and makes millions in profit.  If I had known I could have owned and patented seeds, I wouldn’t have spit all those times.  Man… so many blowjobs for nothing.

    Because of this seed patenting, 250,000 Indian farmers have killed themselves because of inflated prices of seeds and faulty crops that force them into bankruptcy.  (As a result of Monsanto’s intrusion on India’s traditional and sustainable farming practices, 60% of the population, 1 billion people, are dependent on their GMO agriculture).

    2)  The strategy of Monsanto is to create one seed that can be mass produced in one location, which has created mono-crop agriculture.  So when you drive cross-country, 1/3 of the time you will be staring at corn and soy fields – making you wish the Children of the Corn will emerge and eat your eyeballs.  Because there are these massive fields with one crop created from one seed, they are very susceptible to pests, hence the creation of pesticides.

    Hey! You want to know something fun about pesticides?  A lot of them are made from Agent Orange.  Yeah! That stuff we used as chemical warfare in the Vietnam War.  Monsanto created Agent Orange, had a bunch left over after the war, then discovered the perfect market for it.  Our food!  (PS… it is also contaminating the world’s water supply… but who needs non-poisionous food and water right?)

    3) Lets say you have an organic farm next to a farm that has Monsanto GMO seeds.  There is something called wind right?  If the wind blows, and some of the GMO pollen contaminates your crops, Monsanto can sue you for using their seeds without paying for it.  So not only would your food be polluted with GMO dust, but you are going to have to pay for it as well!  And if you were to try and sue Monsanto for infecting your crops, you will lose!

    4)  I almost forgot about soil erosion.  This basically means that after a few years of GMO farming and the aggressive use of pesticides, the soil is FUCKED.  And because nature is crafty, super weeds then form that are resistant pesticides!   That is kind of awesome nature, but at the same time, thousands of acres have been abandoned in the south because they became impossible to farm on.

    I know the Monsanto propaganda says that we NEED GMO’s to feed the world, but that is not true.  Governments create artificial shortages by throwing food away.  Kind of like how the diamond industry keeps diamonds in storage out of the public market so the demand is greater than the supply.  But in the case, when the demand for food is greater than the supply people die of starvation.  Starvation and extreme poverty is not an environmental necessity, but a political choice.  It is about access to food, resources, and land.  Who ever controls the food source controls the world.

    I don’t know about you guys, but I eat food every day.  I know buying organic is annoyingly expensive, but think of it this way – until the 1940’s the whole world ate organic all the time.  Because that was all there was.  Just regular food.  But since Agribusiness dominates the market, small organic farms can’t compete.  The reason why actual organically farmed food is so expensive is because what most people are eating isn’t really food.  It is a science experiment – and we are the guinea pigs.

    So take that Monsanto!

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  • Emotionally Exhausted

    The mind-body duality is a philosophical conundrum that has been pondered for thousands of years.  In my understanding, the mind is this ethereal idea that is associated with the brain, but doesn’t necessarily reside anywhere.  Who is to say that your mind is in your head, it could be in your heart, stomach, penis… or the little man in the canoe.

    Your mind may not even be yours alone – it could be just a tiny fraction of a collective mind that we all share.  Floating around as part of a giant network of energy, suspended in the quantum universe that you are plugged into for all eternity.

    The body, however, has an expiration date and will decay over time.  It ages, excretes, sweats, leaks, expels, and can embarrass you with its strange noises – like queefs.  But the body is simple.  It is a mechanism that serves you – not an emotional terrorist like your mind.  A tired body from being challenged physically feels like an accomplishment, where a depleted mind from emotional exhaustion can feel depressing.

    Feeling emotionally drained can come in many different forms.  Getting into a fight with a loved one, a stranger being rude, your boss demeaning you, comparing yourself to others, paying bills, family events, or having your period 3 times in 6-weeks.

    The mind-body duality should be called the mind-body marriage, but between a couple that has been together for 50-years and is all crotchety and resentful.  Because if something is affecting the body, like oozing blood out of your lady parts, your mind will also be impacted. Right now my body may be provoking my mind, but does my mind have to be such a bitch about it?

    I need to take a break from all this….

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  • My Name is Toni, and I am a Cheater

    Sometimes you realize something about yourself that you don’t really want to admit. I had one of those moments the other day when talking to my friend Cyndal.  We were sitting at the bank together trying to pass time….

    Cyndal: “I learned how to play poker when I was 5 from my uncle, but I have never been very good at it.”

    Toni: “Is that because you don’t have a good poker face and your cherubic expressions give you away?”

    Cyndal: “I guess?  I just never win.”

    Toni: “I don’t think I have ever played a game of cards and not cheated.”

    Cyndal: “Really?”

    Toni: “Yeah.  I pretty much cheated at every game I played as a kid.”

    Cyndal: “Seriously?”

    Toni: “I would cheat at Uno, Shoots and Ladders, Monopoly, Trivial Pursuit…

    Guy at Bank Helping us: “Wait, how do you cheat in Trivial Pursuit?”

    Toni: “Oh… you know… if someone was holding the card up and I could see the back, I wouldn’t say anything and just read the upside down answer.  Or I would sneak an extra triangle in when no one was paying attention.  Come to think of it, no matter what I was playing I would always figure out some way to cheat.”

    Cyndal: “Were you really competitive or something?”

    Toni: “No.  It is really weird.  It wasn’t like I cared if I won.”

    Cyndal: “But did you stop when you became an adult.”

    Toni: “I cheated in Scattergories the last time I played… and that was two years ago.”

    Cyndal: “Maybe you just don’t like rules? Like you have to break them…. to disregard them completely.  Maybe you were born an anarchist?”

    What kind of kind of person am I?  It is not about the winning, or the thrill of maybe getting caught – because that would be pretty humiliating to get caught cheating at “go fish.”

    I think there is a seduction of getting away with something.  Like I have a superiority complex when I pull it off.  If I can sneak through a game with no one realizing I cheated, then I have won, whether I actually win or not.

    I hope this devious gene does not get passed on.  Or at least skips a generation so The Munch is spared.  I am not proud of my cheating ways, although I am proud I have never got caught.  So far I have yet to play a game with The Munch… but am I actually going to play fair when I do? I guess that will be the real test of motherhood…

    PS.  Upon further reflection, and talking to my friend Bridget about this subject, I also have to admit I cheated on many tests.  I still cannot tell you what “calculus” is, but somehow I got I “B.”

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    March 26, 2013 • 2 years old, Mommy Mind, Musings • Views: 71

  • Thanks…. I guess

    Leaving your child in the care of another is always a risk.  But it is one of those necessary risks, like eating food you dropped on the floor, or sitting down on a public toilet to diarrhea.  I always appreciate when someone watches The Munch for me, but it means I have less control over what happens in her day.  Especially when said caretaker happens to be my mom.  Who although is exquisite, will do as she damn well pleases – because she is still the boss in our relationship.

    Toni: “So Mom, how was she?”

    Mom: “She was okay.  She had what I like to call a ‘weak day.’”

    Toni: “Ummmm what does that mean?”

    Mom: “Well, she basically watched the Ipad all day.”

    Toni: “What???????!!!!!!!!!”

    Mom: “She seemed pretty tired, so I gave it to her thinking she would fall asleep, but then she didn’t and wouldn’t let me take it away.”

    Toni: “So she watched the IPad for 6 hours today?!!!”

    Mom: “Yeah, pretty much.  I tried to have her watch Dumbo, but she got really upset when they locked Dumbo’s mother up, and made me turn it off.”

    Toni: “Mom are you out of your mind!!!!??? You had her watch the scene in Dumbo when the locked up his mother??? I am still traumatized by that.  I couldn’t watch that now and not weep. “

    Mom: “Yeah, she was pretty distressed by that.”

    Toni: “How could you do that??”

    Mom: “Toni, Dumbo is a beautiful movie.  I could do a whole diatribe on the meaning of Dumbo.”

    Toni: “Mom!! She is only 2! I can’t believe you let her watch the saddest thing ever to be drawn in the history of all film.”

    Mom: “Calm down Toni. Then we watched Alice and Wonderland for a while, but she really didn’t like it when Alice got shrunk into the bottle.  She made me turn that off too.”

    Toni: “Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!”

    Mom: “So then she insisted on watching these stupid silly things.”

    Toni: “You mean, like, a cartoon for a toddler?  Like Mickey Mouse? Or Pokoyo? Something that doesn’t have severe animal abuse or LSD flashbacks?

    Mom: “Something inane like that.  And she kept trying to have me watch it with her, but there is no way I am watching that crap.”

    Toni: “Wow.  Okay.  Well… I am going to go process this information now.”

    Mom: “Think about it this way Toni, at least now you have something to write about.”

    She wasn’t kidding about that!

    PS: I went to look for the scene in Dumbo to share with you.. and it literally comes up as Dumbo Sad Scene in Youtube

    “Seriously…. why did they do that to Dumbo’s Mommy?”

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    March 25, 2013 • 2 years old, Family Drama, Parenting, Talking and Not Talking • Views: 71

  • My Child is a Shaman

    We all have an inner voice.  Mine perhaps is more outer than most, but my belly button is an innie so it all evens out.  Unless you have hyper-conditioned your mind to speak only affirmations, chances are your internal dialogue is quite critical.  Mine is telling me, “that was a stupid sentence, and you are always wordy, and write too many run-ons, and your skin is looking grey, and your hair is stringy, and there you go with those run-on sentences again you big poopy face dumb-dumb.”

    Some people are more sadistic to themselves then others.  Self-abuse is never okay because it can make you go blind, or grow hair on your palms.  At least that is what I was told.  I have a friend who is a lovely talented angel from another dimension of perfection, but she is always ripping herself apart – which is gross and makes stains.  The story she tells herself of her life does not honor her ability or accomplishments.

    Today she was lying on my bathroom floor, going down a spiral of negativity, and feeling really down.

    Toni: “Munch, should we go check on Bridget to see if she is okay?”

    Munch: “Okay… Mamma she is on the floor!”

    Toni: “I know Munch!”

    Munch: “Is she okay? Is she feeling sick?”

    Toni: “Yes Munch, she is feeling sick.”

    Munch: “She is sooo sick and she is on the floor?  What’s the matter with her?”

    Toni: “I don’t know Munch… what do you think she is sick with?”

    Munch: “Ummmm I think she is sick in her mouth.”

    Isn’t that so insightful?  I have never complained about my mouth being sick, and really don’t think The Munch was reenacting some ailment she has witnessed.  She came up with that out of her own intuition.  And I think she is completely right.  We too often tell ourselves that we aren’t good enough.  The inner-dialogue harshly condemns more than it expresses positivity and self-love.

    The Munch is a wise sage.  A shaman if you will… because maybe we are all a little sick in our mouths.

    (Look! Munch did our make-up! Don’ we look amazing!?”

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    March 22, 2013 • 2nd Month, Baby Brain, Mommy Mind, Musings, Talking and Not Talking • Views: 58

  • Branding A Child Mentally Disabled

    According to a recent study, 1 in 50 children have been diagnosed with Autism.  That seems like a lot! It is said that a contributing factor to this increase is that more doctors are identifying kids as Autistic than in previous years -so it is unclear whether the actual number is increasing.  Maybe there are more Autistic children because of something specific yet to be identified, or maybe there was always this ratio of Autistic children but they are only being labeled as such now?

    Bipolar disorder statistics have also skyrocketed 40-fold in children being diagnosed.  And the solution is to put them on anti-psychotic drugs.  A doctor can look at the symptoms, and analyze behavior, but does one person’s opinion of another mean they should be considered disabled and immediately medicated?

    The thing about mental “illness” that has always concerned me is that it is a completely subjective science.  There is no blood test or concrete objective experiment that can prove someone has a mental condition.  Brain scans can offer insight, but does not provide substantial evidence that can make a diagnosis concrete.

    When I was 10 a psychiatrist told me I had ADHD. Maybe.  But perhaps if she had asked me about my diet, and realized that it included candy for dinner, she would have possibly examined my nutritional intake before suggesting meds.  I ate more sugar as a child then Willy Wonka, and am pretty sure that was a contributing factor to my manic energy.

    When my brother was a young child his doctor diagnosed him with Autism because he hadn’t started talking.  My mom was very worried, and I am sure felt terrified, but she also didn’t believe there was anything wrong with him.  Rather than immediately sending him to professionals, she decided to be patient and continue seeing him as a healthy little boy.  When I was born, just before his 3rd birthday, my mother brought me home from the hospital and my brother spoke his first words.

    “Baby Toni. Baby, baby Toni.”

    And you know what? My brother hasn’t shut up ever since, and he is a Harvard graduate with two masters’ degrees.

    Maybe my brother and I are running around as high-functioning autistic, ADHD adults, or maybe we were just children developing into humans in our own way.  I wouldn’t say either of us is “normal,” because we are both totally weird, but I don’t feel like I have a mental disorder that I should have been medicated for.  Who is to say what is a “normal” mental state?  I don’t feel intellectually held back, even if I eat chocolate for breakfast.

    Having a doctor diagnose your child as “abnormal” and “disabled” can be crippling to both the child and parents.  Families can internalize news as  sentence set in stone rather a perspective that should be examined.  There is hope like in this study that suggests children can even out grow autism.  Of course there are kids who suffer from their mental state, and need immense help and support -but there is also a wide spectrum.  Medication should be the last option after everything else is exhausted.  Especially because the adults are making decisions for the child, and it is one that will affect them for the rest of their lives.

    (Here I am as Boy George and my brother as David Bowie…. pretty cool kids if you ask me!)

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    March 21, 2013 • 2 years old, Baby Brain, Behavior, Current Events, Health, Parenting • Views: 214

  • The Cost of Free Art

    I remember paying for art.  If I wanted to own music, I would go to the store and buy a tape. If I was interested in a movie I could either rent it, or pay more and own it.  If I wanted information in the form of print, I would buy a newspaper, magazine, book, or go to the library.  I never felt cheated. I never resented this process.  It all seemed fair to me.

    But now the idea spending money on media seems absurd.  Don’t’ get me wrong, I fully believe the creators of content should get paid… just not by me.

    The Internet has made me an entitled little shit.  I am ashamed of this truth.  The access to free art has corrupted me completely.  It is too tempting, too hard to resist, and too easy to obtain.

    I don’t really feel sorry for the poor rockers and movie stars who are making less millions.  But they are not the only ones affected.  The desperate artist is also at the mercy of the free art paradigm.  The Internet has provided a medium where anyone and everyone can expose their art to the public, and potentially gain an audience.  This democratic platform is like a wet dream for creative people, but also a really easy way to exploit your self.  You can put your heart into the process of entertaining and engaging people, but that doesn’t mean you are ever going to make money doing it.  Although in the past the middleman had control over the industry, he also made sure you got paid.

    People are relying heavily on advertising and corporate backing, but getting into bed with big business does not guarantee satisfaction.  In fact, you are majorly compromising your self, and I don’t mean in a fun S&M kind of way.  Especially when dealing in the realm of journalism and writing.  Considering 6 companies control 90% of the media in this country – that means the vast majority of the mainstream media is corrupted.  But relying solely on blogs for information, and people with little resources or financial compensations, doesn’t guarantee reliability either.  I mean I love my some conspiracy theory sites, but I am not sure that it is scientific fact that the Royal Family are lizard people.

    The idea that everyone one, regardless of income, can have exposure to information and art is magnificent and should never change.  But the idea that art is free does not honor the time and effort put into it.

    I guess it sounds like I want to have my cake and eat it too.  But I don’t get who just sits around watching a cake.

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    March 20, 2013 • 2 years old, Current Events, Education, Musings, Political Banter • Views: 44

  • The Forbidden Fruit Has Been Tasted

    It happened.  My child has been exposed.  She experienced the taste of sin. A drug she will battle with, and probably abuse many times.  And I am not talking black tar heroin, because we already kicked that habit when she was 18-months.  I am talking about sugar.

    It started innocently enough. With an organic, vegan, gluten-free, coconut Popsicle my mom gave her.  The Munch’s unpolluted mind had never even heard such words as cake, candy, or cookies.  But the more she started to understand the world around her, the harder it became to lie about what things were.  She started to look at me with doubt when I insisted that a lollipop was made of fairy skin.

    A birthday cake was the gateway drug.  My friend’s husband offered her a piece.  I almost refused.  I was this close from convincing The Munch that cake was bread with barf spread on top of it.  But it was for free, and he insisted she have a taste.  I figured it was a special occasion, and let her live on the wild side.  How often does one go to birthday parties? It turns out, quite a lot.  Now all she cares about at these stupid parties is the cake. It doesn’t even matter whose party it is.

    I think I was the one who gave her the first cookie.  But it wasn’t my fault.  I was tired, weak, and had my guard down.  I didn’t have it in me to fight against her wrath.  She manipulated me.  And now she knows not only that cookies are fucking delicious, but also what they look like.  This makes going to a store very complicated because she understands that round circles with black dots means that shit is good.

    The ice cream happened with her babysitter… the candy too.  Now The Munch is fully aware just how tasty sugar is.  The only things I have been able to keep from her are chocolate bars.  I told her they were “Mamma crackers” and made out of cat poop.

    Maybe it is not a big deal?  Sugar is a part of life and if I deprive her totally I will only make the forbidden more seductive.  But it is not good for the immune system.  It doesn’t contribute anyway to her her health.  And even if its organic treats she is getting, it doesn’t mean its good for her (although I tell myself that organic ice cream happens to be great for me).

    I am trying not to care too much.  To realize that finding a balance is part of parenting and if I am too controlling about what The Munch eats I could give her a complex.  But her naivety made my life so much easier.  She was totally oblivious to the temptation.  The Munch’s ignorance protected her from feeling the disappointment of lacking – or maybe more important it protected me from her.  Now she knows what she is missing when I say. “no you can’t have that.” The subsequent distress, frustration, horror, and tantrum that follow are because she can taste the vacuum of what could have been.

    Sugar is the first drug children are exposed to.  It has an addictive quality, and also makes you feel high.  The rush.  The hyper manic energy that makes you want to punch a cat in the face.  And then of course the crash, that leads into the depression of being without, that eventually morphs into then the desperate searching for your next fix.  And like the need for drugs, kids will do anything to get their sweets.  Including scream in your face, embarrass you at stores, and weep uncontrollably while shaking in the corner.

    “Hey Mamma! This doesn’t taste like fairy flesh?!”

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    March 19, 2013 • 2 years old, Baby Body, Baby Brain, Eating, Health • Views: 298

  • When you are talented you don’t have to be pretty

    Although the culture at large is obsessed with physical beauty, being an attractive woman can become the defining attribute of your identity.  Men of course can be vain and care deeply about their appearance, but there will still be societal expectations of him beyond his defined cheekbones and sculpted buttocks.  Yet for a woman, sometimes, just being pretty can be enough.

    When a woman is gorgeous it can excuse her from being anything else.  That is why it is always surprising when a stunning girl also happens to be smart, or good at science, or interested in politics.  The “sexy professional” is a concept so absurd by cultural standards that it has become a cliché Halloween costume… in the realm of myth, fantasy, and the ridiculous.

    Even though I know all this, and can identify the meaninglessness of judging women for her looks, I still do it everyday of my life.  I will flip through a magazine or watch a movie and think: “Well, she is not that pretty.  Her left eye is lower than her right and she has this weird dimple thing going on when she talks.  Her forehead is too small and there is a something funky going on with her left ear.  Oh, and her ass is kind of flat and flabby.”

    What am I even talking about?? Why do I do that?

    First of all, all these women are somehow in the spot light and therefor have even more pressure to be aesthetically perfect.  Which is bizarre considering how many foul looking men are able to be in that same position but are critiqued on skill alone.  Then I realized that the women I evaluate the most are the ones that I am not blown away by their talent.  I mean they are okay, they don’t suck, but they aren’t brilliant.  When a woman is really masterful at her craft, be it Lena Dunham, Adel, Brittany Howard, Meryl Streep, Toni Morrison, Janice Joplin, Virginia Wolf, Martha Graham… I don’t give a flying fuck in a rolling doughnut what they look like.  I will maybe rip apart Brittany Spears for her hair extensions showing and having a frozen grin plastered to her face, but that is because she is only mediocre at singing.

    So being excessively beautiful may stunt your growth as a human, artist, or thinker because people’s expectations of you will be lower.  You wont have to push yourself as hard.  Beauty can conceal your averageness.

    Supposedly I am not supposed to tell my daughter she is pretty all the time because that will infect her psyche and she will start to believe her beauty is tied with her self-worth.  No doubt.  This is true, and I down with this idea.  But I also don’t want her relying on her lovely face, and be unexceptional in the rest of her life, because it was too easy to invest more in her genetic disposition.  That sounds lame!  I would so much rather The Munch impress people with her endless genius than her tits or ass.  Of course I don’t want to give her a complex and never acknowledge her adorableness, but at the same time most insanely attractive people are also insanely boring.

     

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    March 18, 2013 • 2 years old, Mommy Body, Mommy Mind, Musings, Women's Business • Views: 27