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Current Events
Category

  • My Soul Has Blue Balls

    Hi. I’m Toni. And my soul has blue balls.

    Not because my life is bad. My life is fine. I just want more out of all of it. A lot of energy is spent picking apart the pieces of my life and wanting more – a mixture between chasing feelings and running from them in an endless marathon of avoidance. I don’t care if my glass is half empty or half full; I just want to know if it’s big enough for me to bathe in? Yet within this context of swirling around in an existential shame spiral of my own making, I turn my attention to world events, and the nightmare of modern times. I’m overcome with massive guilt around caring so deeply about my own life, when so much of the world is suffering. I wake up in the morning happy to be alive, then the overall malaise and general dissatisfaction sweeps over me. I think about myself, wondering if it’s possible to feel truly satisfied with my career, but then realize Donald Trump is still President – and a deep panic sets in. But then I remember how stress will give me wrinkles, so I turn my attention back to thinking about me, and wondering if the world will ever truly appreciate my anti-feminist feminist post-modern modern world view?

    I make it to my kitchen to prepare for the day and listen to Noam Chomsky on “Democracy Now” talk about how we are at the brink of nuclear war. I think to myself “You need do something about this Toni! Noam is not dumb, or alarmist. He must be right!” But then the show is over, and I’ve eaten my breakfast, so I go back to thinking about me. My brain trails to the very important question of, “is it really crucial to change your underwear daily?”

    I then get into my car to drive my kid to school and listen to the “Radiolab Podcast” discuss how at any moment, Trump could start a nuclear war. There is truly no one to stop him. Horrified, and in disbelief, I think to myself, “Jesus Christ Toni, this is a big fucking deal! What are you gonna do about it?” But then the show ends, and a sweet folk singer comes on the radio singing about grinning at her reflection in a spoon. So I go back to thinking about me again – and how I haven’t been to the dentist since 2003 and should smile less in public.

    I then go home and work on my computer. I spend an hour composing the perfect equal opportunity genital joke, and then check Facebook for a break. I see a post that reads, “How long did it take Trump to put the Threat of nuclear annihilation back on the table? Less then four months?” I start to sweat profusely, and ask myself, “Toni, are you seriously going to live your life as a passive bystander with the possibility of nuclear missals being launched into the sky?” but that makes me think of a funny dick joke, so I go back to that.

    You guys!! I can’t stop thinking about myself even though the world might be coming to an end! Am I the only one? Can we have a support group for people who care enough to have major anxiety about world events, but still enjoy fixating on their own meager existence? It’s so hard to be simmultaniously self-obsessed and world-obsessed. It’s like every time I’m about to metaphorically cum thinking about my own life, awareness seeps in reminding me that my individual concerns are insignificant compared to the bigger picture. I feel so alone. Hold me.

    Here I am… in the snow… wearing a T-shirt… thinking about me, despite global warming.

    April 12, 2017 • ambitions, Current Events, emotions, Musings, Political Banter, problems • Views: 793

  • Donald Trump Self-Esteem

    I think the one thing we can all learn from Donald Trump, is how to maintain unwavering positive self-esteem, even in the face of total failure. His confidence is remarkable! He doesn’t care about the approval of others! If people aren’t into him, he just thinks it’s a lie constructed by the fake news made up of a bunch of dummies. Trump’s sassier then the sassy friend in a movie who knows how to sass it up!

    I don’t know about you guys, but I could use some of that Trump-esteem. My life is filled with rejection. I am constantly dealing with people telling me, “thanks, but no thanks.” It’s hard to keep going in the face of that. When you work in a creative field, you have to be somewhat, if not completely delusional. Even when people tell me that the films I make, or the things I write aren’t good enough, I have to tell myself “keep trying Toni… Not everyone is going to understand your style of genital humor.”

    But if I were in any other profession, say a surgeon, and hospitals kept rejecting me – I would probably stop. I would never be like, “they just don’t get my type of surgery.”

    If I were a lawyer and lost every case, chances are I would quit, rather then yell at the judge, “my law is post-modern, avant-garde, reductionist… and you have no taste because you’re provincial philistine!

    The other day I went for a walk, got pretty stoned, and thought to myself “wow, I am the hardest working unsuccessful person I know.” It would be one thing if I didn’t work that hard, then I would have an excuse. I could be like, “well Toni, you never really tried.” But I really try!! Then I started to think that I must just not be that amazing at anything, and my current life is the consequence of my being un-amazing. Then I got soooo hungry. But then, I got a new video idea!

    I think we all have to deal with disappointment and rejection – whether in love, work, school, or public approval. Yet even though we are a social species, we also can’t allow other’s to define our sense of self. In matters of the heart, we often take breakups so personally. “Oh dear, that person doesn’t love me, therefor I can’t love myself.” Well, maybe you were an asshole every so often and could have done more to clean up your dirty dishes. But you can learn from your mistakes and still think you are worthy of love. Rejection, although damaging for the ego, is also an opportunity to grow, improve, and better define what it is you actually want.

    So in these dark political times where the face of Donald Trump causes my mouth to water at the precipice of constant retching, and my vagina to dry up, ready to turn itself inside out – there is something positive I can learn from him. I can channel his unrelenting pride. And you can too, the next time an entire world thinks you’re a piece of shit.

    Looks like I need a dose of Trump-Esteem!!!

    March 30, 2017 • Current Events, emotions, Musings, Political Banter • Views: 564

  • A Plea For Economic Social Terrorism

    Now that it’s no longer “International Women’s Day,” I notice that no one is thanking me for having a vagina. Where are all my Facebook shout outs for housing a womb to house a child? What kind of shit is this?

    The problem with the current state of activism is that social issues have become trendy. You’ll go on your Facebook newsfeed, and a gaggle of friends who think the same as you will post the same array of information. Once that trend get’s boring, it’s then no longer “cool” to post about. But social issues don’t go away just because they do on Facebook. There is still conflict in Palestine even when Banksy isn’t tagging walls.

    When causes become commodities for social capital, they may get a momentary bump in ratings, but they lose their audience once the next cause premiers on the red carpet. I went to an event the other day where these monks were talking about persecution in Tibet and their need for support and I was like, “Ummm no you’re wrong… Tibet is free, remember? I went to that concert in 1996.”

    We lose our stamina for social causes because we get protest fatigue, and then need Viagra for our activism. In the midst of our busy lives, it’s hard to schedule in “fight against tyranny.” Do I do that before or after I watch the OA? There is a sense of irony at play because the reason we agree to the concept of a goverenment in the first place is because most of us don’t WANT to think about the nuances of how a collective society functions. We prefer to defer to the Mommy and Daddy of our political system to take care of us, (or in our case in the U.S.A., mostly Daddy). Yet because we have given our power over to those that we assume “know better,” we then have to be even more diligent politically to make sure they don’t abuse their power. So in wanting freedom from the responsibility associated with having no government, we consequently lose our freedoms because of the corruption of government.

    As Trump tweets about which gender can fart in which bathroom, he’s simultaneously de-regulating business and allowing for a future of MAJOR environmental assault. Trump’s crusade against “fake news” has strangely inspired news outlets to report on their own fakeness rather than the fact that Trump’s making deals and longterm contracts for his businesses. The way this presidency is going to effect the future is terrifying when you think of how Trump prioritizes profit over the planet at every turn. Beyond Trump’s gross nature of giving chicks the “shocka,” this current regime has ZERO respect for the very real impact of business our ecosystem – which incidentally is the ONLY PLANET we have to live on. We are NOT Elon Musk and can’t afford Mars!

    Half the country is freaking out right now. We see the problematic nature of this Post-Apocalyptic Trump world, and want to do something. I like the spirit behind the call for strikes, but I think we can do more. One problem with the strategy of strikes is that if you are not of a certain social class, and believe you can’t make that kind of financial risk, you feel alienated. Also, there seems to be relatively wishy-washy outcomes. Why wasn’t there a specific demand for the strike on International Lady Day? How about women strike until the Supreme Court is ruled by a majority of women – much like it has been ruled by a majority of men since the birth of this cuntree? But the suggestion to “not go to work so guys realize how important we are” doesn’t exactly change the world. Simply wanting to be honored is too vague. We need be making clear demands, with clear outcomes, and clear deliverables. It’s not like the terrorists in Bruce Willis movies just want to be seen. No! They want x amount of cash, a private plane to get away, and to die just after hearing some pithy comeback like “yippee ka yay mother fucker.”

    So this is my plea: let’s engage in acts of economic social terrorism. I don’t think black people should pay taxes until reparations have been given, and the prison industrial complex has been abolished. I don’t think students should pay student loans until that exploitive system has been re-established and the cost of education brought down. I don’t think any of us should pay health insurance companies or our medical bills until we have universal health care. And if you are anti war, and believe that our military is one the LARGEST contributors to global warming, and terrorism, and is the greatest threat to the future of humanity, then do not pay the 21% of your taxes that go to supporting that system.

    If we all organize and refuse to participate in the economic structure that tyrannizes us, we will be heard. And guess what? There isn’t the infrastructure to come after us individually. It would be a bureaucratic nightmare. We could shut down the White House and Wall Street, and we don’t need guns to do it. We just need to be aligned.

    If we want change it’s not going to be through sporadic involvement. Change comes by kicking the system in the balls… where it hurts… with MONEY!

  • The Male Plight

    The other day I was at rehearsal for my belly dance company, and was working with a cane as a prop. As the other dancers and I were chatting and figuring out our positioning, I did what any normal adult woman would do with a cane – put it between my legs and pretended to have a penis. I then of course started to stroke it… because I’m a grown up.

    This obvious display of my maturity got me thinking about genitals in general. Looking at my cane wiener, I realized how vulnerable men must feel to have their cock and balls exposed to the world. The exterior positioning of the flopping male genitalia make men more susceptible to danger. They have to walk around with their most sensitive bits unprotected, flailing and bouncing about indiscriminately. Perhaps because of this anatomical liability, men often filter the majority of their negative emotions through a lens of aggression – as a preemptive strike to compensate. It doesn’t really matter what they are feeling – embarrassed, scared, hurt, ashamed, lost – the way they express those feelings often through a lens of anger. I believe that the reason we have nuclear war is because men have to protect their dicks.

    Women don’t have the problem of our privates being public. We are all tucked in, like a suitcase. I think that’s why women are generally less violent. Yet we do have this gaping open wound that is constantly leaking, which is why women often express their emotions through tears. We cry when we’re sad, when we’re happy, when we’re lost. We cry because much like our weeping vaginas, it’s hard to hold in emotions when there is a giant HOLE IN YOUR BODY.

    Then of course we have the pageantry of our periods to contend with. We can’t just wear a long skirt and allow our menses to flow freely. Nooooo. It would be frowned upon to walk around leaving behind you a red trail like a communist snail. Society wouldn’t allow that. We live in a democracy after all.

    As a woman it’s easy for me to identify with the hardships of the feminine experience. As I just did so lovingly for you. Yet it’s also crucial for me to concern myself with the male plight. If I don’t show empathy for the opposite gender, then I can’t expect it in return. In this current Post-Trump paradigm there is so much to divide us as our ideologies and dogmas cloud potential connection. In order to counteract this intentional ploy of the ruling lizard elite to tear communities apart so we are easier to control, I must put myself in the head of a man…’s penis.

    I think one of the hardest parts about being a man in the modern world is having to constantly abide by the creepy rules, even when you’re not creepy. Imagine being a dad with a daughter, and your little girl wants you to play with her and her little friend. Picture these two sweet cherubs innocently requesting, “Tickle us daddy! Chase us around and tickle us!!” As a man you can’t go around tickling other people’s kids! The police would be at your door in minutes. Even when you’re not a sex offender, there is so much that men have to do to ensure that they are not seen as one. It must be hard to have to force yourself to question, “Is my being affectionate going to be seen as being a creepy uncle” all the time. Yet at the same time, the creepy uncle is REAL! We all have one!!!

    There is a burden men carry around because of all the deplorable acts other men have committed. Women are socialized to mistrust men, and first assume they are a threat until proven otherwise. Women are guarded as a means to defend ourselves against potential danger, but the sad truth is that there are many men that we don’t have to protect ourselves from. I am sure it must be really painful to be assumed to be a raper or molester when you are a man who has no interest in raping or molesting.

    So what is the solution to this dilemma? For safety reasons it would be absurd to teach young girls not to be cautious, but the energy of being deemed dangerous when you’re not is psychologically brutal. Women genuinely fear men because of the awful behaviors of men, and as a consequence men react to this rejection with misogyny and sexism. This cultural mistrust between the genders is a feeding ground for division. The more we are steered away from intimacy and towards skepticism, the more fragmented we are, and the easier we are to manipulate.

    My suggestion is much like we need resumes and letters of recommendation for jobs; we also need them for our men. That way you can have men vetted by other women, and not have to live in a constant state of skepticism. For example, when you go on a first date with a guy, you can read his letter of recommendation from his last girlfriend before you drink the cocktail he just bought you. “Brad is really sweet and giving in the bedroom, but he doesn’t unload the dishwasher and leaves his socks on the living room floor.” Huh… looks like Brad is kind of a slob, but isn’t going to put roofies in my drink! Or “Jason will buy you diamonds and take you out to dinner, but he takes selflies in the mirror and will cheat on you.” No way… I can’t live with the mirror selfies Jason! You guys… there is SOOO much potential to heal the gender divide!

  • It’s Going to Hurt!

    We adult humans spend a good portion of our lives avoiding pain. When we get too cold, we most likely go inside to stop the discomfort of freezing fingers. When we’re too hot, we again go inside – but this time into chilly air-conditioned rooms. We take painkillers to dull the uncomfortable sensations in our bodies, and medicate our brains to ease the uncomfortable thoughts in our minds. We often don’t attempt physical risks in fear of injury, and will avoid relationships altogether that we think have the potential of breaking our hearts. And when we participate in golden showers, we do so in the comfort of a Ritz, not in a grimy a Holiday Inn.

    We run from pain because we fear it.

    Because of this pervasive trepidation of suffering, we socialize our children to avoid pain also. If you go to a playground, you will hear a chorus of parents shouting “careful,” over and over in a round – like an extra annoying version of “row row row your boat.” Parents are constantly trying to protect their children and keeping them from falling – forgetting that a face-plant is actually a pretty important part of learning. Sometimes falling off the monkey bars and getting the wind knocked out of you is a good thing. That way next time you’ll know to fall on top of another kid, to soften the impact.

    I guarantee you that the most crucial and life-changing moments of your existence were not your happiest – but rather overcoming something challenging. We don’t learn from ease, we learn from pain. When we breakthrough pain, we realize our own strength and resilience. That is how we grow and evolve. No one remembers the days that were super chill, nothing difficult happened, and someone served you bonbons on a golden plate. We instead remember the times a grown man pissed on a prostitute, or got pissed on by a prostitute.

    I think one of the greatest disservices that we can do to ourselves, or our kids, is thinking that life shouldn’t be painful – because guess what? IT’S GOING TO BE! The expectation that we can evade pain is not only unrealistic; it’s setting you up for a lifetime of disappointment. I don’t know about you, but I would rather know I can get through painful experiences than pretending life will shower nothing but prosperity upon me… because only then will I realize that I’m actually wet with urine.

    You guys… I just can’t stop with these references. It’s too special. Trump’s life is comedy gold…en shower.

    Back to the point. The other day The Munch got a splinter. Now there are two kinds of splinters in the world. A splinter that goes into your skin at a diagonal angle – which means it is easy to get out – and a splinter that goes into your skin at a 90 degree angle – which means your fucked.

    The Munch got a 90-degree splinter into the heel of her foot. I was out of town, and her dad called me to explain the situation. I told him to soak her foot in warm water to soften the skin… but I forgot to mention SOAPY warm water. So basically he put her foot in purely warm water, and immediately the wood expanded – making the splinter even harder to extract. He tried to get it out, but at that point it was too embedded.

    The next day I came back, and the splinter was still there despite many attempts, and holistic remedies. We tried olive oil, eggshell, banana peel, Epsom salts, whale sperm. Nothing worked. I could run my finger over the skin, and it wasn’t even poking out anymore. Anytime we tried to grab the end of the splinter with tweezers, the wood just splintered off. The Munch couldn’t walk, so there was no choice but to get it out, yet the question was how? I’m not sure if you’ve ever tried to take a splinter out of a 6-year olds foot, but it’s kind of like wrestling a rabid wolverine.

    Munch: Ow mom OW!!!!! Don’t touch it! IT HURTS!!!
    Me: Well I have to at least look at it…
    Munch: OW OW OW OW OW OW OW!! STOP NO OWWWWWWW!!
    Me: I can’t get it out if you keep moving around and kicking your foot!
    Munch: YOU’RE NOT BEING GENTLE!
    Me: I am trying to be… but if you don’t let me get it out, we will have to take you to the doctor to do it. You can’t walk, and it can get infected.
    Munch: NO WAY NO WAY NO WAY NO WAY!!! I AM NOT GOING TO THE DOCTOR!!!!!!
    Me: Then you’re going to have to let me do it.
    Munch: OW OW OW OW OW OW!!!
    Me: Dude you have to stop kicking!!!
    Munch: I CAN’T STOP KICKING BECAUSE YOU KEEP POKING AND HURTING ME!
    Me: Well, do you want to go the doctor then?
    Munch: NO NO NO NO NO I WON’T GO!

    You can see this was not going well. Then I realized something. Part of why The Munch was resisting so much was because she thought I was going to be gentle, and not hurt her. Yet the problem was that there is no way to dig a splinter out of a foot and not have it hurt! The only way to get this demon wood out was to pick, prod, squeeze, and shear the skin.

    Me: Listen. This is going to hurt. There is no way I can do this and it won’t be painful. But if you don’t want to go to the doctor, you have to let me hurt you.
    Munch: Fine, but you have to be gentle.
    Me: I’m will do my best to be gentle, but that doesn’t mean it’s not going to hurt. It is. I am going to hurt you. You have to wrap your head around that. But that’s the only way I can get it out. Life is full of pain okay Munch? There is no running from it. But you’re the bravest girl I know. You had someone cut your eyeball out of your face… twice. You’ve lived through surgery; you can live through this okay?
    Munch: Okay. Just don’t take me back to the hospital. I hate that place.
    Me: Deal.

    For the next hour of our lives, with her dad holding a flashlight to The Munch’s foot, I dug into her skin. Sure The Munch would have to take breaks, but there was no more resisting, no more kicking, no more shouting. She just let me carve my way into her foot and then squeeze the shit out of it to try and loosen the splinter. Then, I finally saw my moment. I got the tweezers, and pulled it out. We all started screaming and jumping up and down in celebration. I swear on everything holy pulling that splinter out was as emotionally satisfying as watching the birth of my child. In fact, it was more gratifying.

    Obviously the Munch had a shift of consciousness. Once she not only expected the pain, but also accepted it, her tolerance quadrupled. She was able to sit there peacefully and deal with the discomfort because she had surrendered to that reality. Once you allow the pain, you realize, that it’s not that bad. You will survive, and the satisfaction of getting through it is profound. I think we all can remind ourselves that pain is not the worst thing that can happen to us. Stagnation is. Allowing ourselves to be stifled by the fear of suffering. So go out there, make mistakes, get hurt, have someone destroy your heart. You’re going to be okay! I promise. Live life embracing pain. I know I for one am going to remember this the next time I get pee in my eye from a presidential golden shower, because that shit does sting.

    The tools and splinter

    splinter-blog

  • Do People Really Change?

    I would not describe myself as an emotional person. I’m what you call even-tempered, non-reactionary, or dead inside. I rarely pick fights with people, and the only time you will see me angry is when you’re angry with me – so I mirror that “anger emotion” like a robot from Westworld to make it all stop.

    That isn’t to say I don’t feel feelings. I do. At least I think I do. But I mostly keep them to myself. I tend to internalize my emotions rather than externalize them. That’s not to imply they embarrass me, or I’m afraid someone will judge me for not being happy. Who is happy anyway? I don’t trust anyone who is happy all the time – unless they’re my ecstasy dealer. I will easily admit to my feelings and say that I’m depressed, sad, disappointed, hurt… but I’m not really going to ACT that way around other people. It’s more a descriptor of my energy rather than my behavior.

    I never thought of myself as repressed, but I have to admit the harsh reality that every 4 months my body completely breaks down. I will have crazy back spasms, break out in shingles, hurt myself sneezing – whatever. There will be about a 2- week window where my body will be in complete rebellion and I will have to spend the days healing, reflecting, and “nurturing” myself. BORING!

    My most recent experience was hurting my left butt. I know. Who hurts their left butt? But my left butt was sore all the time, and it made it really hard to move. I had a big dance performance coming up for my belly dance company, and was starting to freak the fuck out. We had been rehearsing and preparing for a YEAR! A year of work!! I really wanted to dance.

    I went to see my healer and she went to town on my butt, but to no avail. It was still gripping. Holding onto something – a real and literal pain in the ass. I went back the day of my performance and again the healer went hard on me until finally – BAM! It was over! She had released my ass!

    I was elated. I went to my studio to help set up, my heart filled with joy. I was so grateful my ass was better and I would be able to dance. Then, as I was sweeping the floor, my knee gave out.

    I WAS SWEEPING THE FLOOR mind you. Not doing a back flip. Just walking slowly pushing a broom.

    I could not accept that I was hurt. I tried to knock my knee back in place. Push my shinbone where I thought it needed to go. Massage the tendons. Loosen the ligaments. But it was not happening. A year of rehearsals, dedication, effort, and I couldn’t perform. My butt felt amazing though.

    I went back to see my healer and asked what she thought the emotional aspect of my pain was. I do believe that our bodies manifest emotional pain that our spirit isn’t processing, so I was curious what she thought was going on with me. My healer said she thought it had to do with childhood issues, the current stress I’m under, my over-critical inner dialogue, blah blah blah why aren’t I a robot from Westworld again?

    I went to my friend’s house and decided to pick a tarot card. I asked the tarot what was the message of my knee and the card I picked was… you guessed it… Childhood.

    Fine tarot. I get it. But what about childhood?! What does that mean? I could be anything!!!!?? Can’t you be a little more specific tarot!?

    Here is where shit gets weird. As I was lying there unable to walk, I check my email. My friend from high school, out of nowhere, sends me pictures of a letter I wrote to her when I was 17.

    As you would have it, the secrets of my pain and the message of me knee were written out for me in plain English… just 20 years ago.

    (FYI The context of the time of this letter was that I was fighting with my parents and staying at my grandmother’s house).

    Here are some excerpts.

    letter-page-1

    “I just finished the ‘Great Gatsby’ and it greatly depressed me. I mean here is a guy whom everyone is using for something, and no one completely understands him. And it’s sad because that’s all he truly wanted, and he never got it.”

    First of all… nice usage of the word “whom” 17-year old Toni. Second of all, I find it both hilarious and tragic that the “Great Gatsby” depressed me. How bourgeoisie! It’s clear that I identified with him, and also felt used and misunderstood. Even though I probably wouldn’t qualify these feelings as my current problems – I also relate to them in a deep way.

    letter-page-2

    “I feel like everyone wants something from us and we never really get anything in return. I mean, it seems all guys really want from us is sex (however that’s all we want too) but still, wouldn’t it be nice to have someone love you even if you didn’t have a hole they could empty themselves into?”

    Wow… okay Teen-Toni. That’s kind of a bleak view, but also one I don’t totally disagree with. I think for many women, we question the motivations of men. Do you they really like me as a friend/ co-worker? Or are they waiting for me to get drunk enough to fuck them one day? But at the same time… “THAT’S ALL WE WANT TOO!” Touché Teen-Toni… tou-motherfucking-ché.

    The male-female dynamic (for heterosexuals) is often fraught with confused sexual emotions. It is hard to cultivate dynamics that are tainted with an underpinning of desire. It’s a challenging context of which to find purity of intention. Yet even if women feel they are also using men for sex, there is something still inherently shitty about feeling used for sex when you’re a woman. Probably because anatomically speaking as a woman you have a hole in your body and are inviting someone else inside. That’s a vulnerable place to be. I mean, how many people would you put your finger in their mouth? Probably a lot. You wouldn’t even have to think too much about it. But how many people would you let but THEIR finger in YOUR mouth? NOT AS MANY!! It would take wayyy more trust no? Hence the sexual double standards we all struggle with.

    letter-page-2-copy

    “The more I think about it the more I know that all I really want is for someone to understand me and wants me to be happy. That’s kind of why I left home for a while because I figured if I wanted that, I should figure out what it is I want myself.”

    Okay… again, I wouldn’t say I felt this way out loud, but I also deep down totally get it. Probably why my life’s work is creating content in a desperate attempt to express myself and be understood. And “I should figure out what it is I want myself” – ummmm why didn’t I have a teen self-help advice column??

    letter-page-3

    “Sometimes I feel there are too many people in my life, and sometimes I feel there are not enough. But through it all, I always seem to feel alone.”

    Okay, these are some amazing lyrics for an angsty 90’s rock ballade, and holy shit I was deep. I totally agree with you Teen-Toni!!! Who doesn’t feel this way!!?

    “I crave to be with someone, although I don’t know who it is. I can’t really deal with my parents anymore because I think they are having problems with each other. At this point I don’t really care because I can’t relate to either of them because they can’t relate to me.”

    Oooooo snap! I was pissed!!! But I find it interesting that I couldn’t relate to them, because I felt they couldn’t relate to me. Being a teenager is a such an isolating time, and it feels as if parents are fundamentally unable to get you. Is that because of the generational divide? Or is there an inevitable cultural clash that comes with the search to find one’s own identity? Does any teen feel like their parents relate to them?

    “Sometimes I feel like I am being selfish, and other times I don’t. I can’t tell anymore.”

    Totally Teen-Toni. Still can’t.

    “I am not in love with any boy anymore and I don’t know what to think about that either because it will probably change. My grandmother says pimply teenage boys are a waste of time and all they want to do is empty themselves inside of you…”

    Hmmmm I guess I was kind of a romantic… but my CATHOLIC GRANDMOTHER was none too impressed by my sexing up teen boys. Maybe she had some influence on my cynicism…. Both then and now!!!

    letter-page-4

    “It is kind of a harsh outlook, but it seems pretty accurate. Every where you go people want something from you, and I know there is no avoiding that.”

    Damn Teen-Toni… that is so fatalistic, and yet… yes. I hear you. I grapple with the concept of unconditional love. I want to believe in it, but it feels that much like communism, it’s impossible in practice.

    After reading all this – it’s kind of shocking how little I’ve changed in 20 years.

    I’m also so taken aback with how deeply I seemed to have felt my feelings. They were so raw then. Even though I essentially feel the same ways as Teen-Toni, for Adult-Toni these feelings are no longer on the surface. I’ve come to accept so much of this as part of life, or at least part of my life. I don’t let it get to me anymore – at least not on a conscious level. It’s as if at 17 I was walking around like a giant open wound, and now, almost 37, I’m just a big scab.

    So get this!

    I went home that night, still unable to walk because my knee was so enflamed. Sad and frustrated, I sat down at the kitchen table while the Munch had her dinner. Then, out of nowhere, The Munch grabs a pad of paper and asks me to write down all that I was feeling. I complied, and then she asked me to write down all my needs.

    CAN YOU FUCKING BELIEVE THAT??

    She then drew pictures representing my feelings and my needs and gave it to me to remember.

    Now that is some profound ass shit. What an amazing exorcise to do when trying to heal. DON’T YOU THINK YOU SHOULD DO THAT YOURSELF RIGHT GODDAMN NOW!? I don’t know where The Munch came up with that … but the next day I could walk again.

    I can’t wait to read what kind of letters that kid will be writing to her friends bitching about me when she’s 17.

    Below is the picture Munch drew for me. Notice the “emotional ambulance” between our names. Then you see the faces of my feelings… frustrated, anxious, and later loved (with my nose looking surprisingly like a set of cock and balls). Then below the faces are my needs, which seemingly include meds, a tower of penises surrounding a bong, more meds, a happy heart, and back to the meds.

    toni-feelings

    December 15, 2016 • Family Drama, Health, Mommyhood, Musings, Old School Stories • Views: 947

  • No Words

    I have no real words to express… from losing Bernie… blatant political corruption… racism… sexism… rape culture…

    So these are my feelings expressed through personalized emojis

    toni-window-scared

    toni-hair-over-face

    toni-drinking-wine

    toni-dead-at-window

    toni-tears-full

    toni-screaming

    toni-laying-on-floor

    toni-hand-over-face-sad

    November 9, 2016 • Current Events, Political Banter • Views: 1312

  • Americans Anonymous Meeting

    “Hi. I’m Toni. And I’m an American.”

    “Hi Toni.”

    Doesn’t it feel like our country is in need of one giant AA meeting right now?? Americans Anonymous!!!

    Are we collectively sucking dick for our addictions? Are we metaphorically living under a bridge selling our souls to dealers? What’s happening!? We are better than this!!!!

    This current presidential election isn’t just about the two candidates we have to “choose from,” but also the mirror it has come to represent of our culture. It’s like we are in an Alice and Wonderland acid trip – staring into our reflection seeing an image of ourselves staring into our reflection seeing an image of ourselves staring into our reflection… forever… into eternity.

    The themes that have dominated the conversation of our political landscape – racism, sexism, xenophobia, corruption, corporate greed, political lies, voter disenfranchisement, questioning of democracy, rape – are all microcosms of the underbelly of this country. Even though it’s painful to admit this, at least we now get the opportunity to roll over of on our backs and expose ourselves… belly in the air, genitals blowing in the wind.

    Currently we have 4 psychological wars going on within our borders; gender wars, race wars, class wars, and religious wars.

    What’s with all the civil wars! I don’t want this! If shit goes down lefty liberals like me are pretty much screwed. We don’t have guns! I can’t fight anyone with my witty feminist banter or new age rhetoric about how we are all connected through the quantum field. The astral plane of existence where I eat gogi berries with Ram Das won’t save me from an AK47!

    We are creating false enemies with each other, and this keeps us distracted. The more we focus on attacking each other, the less we focus on how corporations are screwing us… with NO LUBE!

    When we are divided, we are not fighting for our collective rights or seizing corporate America. We are instead allowing earth’s precious resources to be capitalized by big business as we stand around yelling at each other.

    Part of our complexity is that because we are so diverse in America, there are going to be more opinions, ways of life, and perspectives. Yet I think we are going about things all wrong. Instead of focusing on the issues we supposedly care about, we instead direct our attention to hating everyone. If we were purely thinking about the issues, we would realize that there are ways we could be more tactical.

    Lets take for example pro-life people, who often see themselves as one issues voters. They want to keep unwanted fetuses alive. What would be a good solution to that vision? Get together with gay men who want to adopt babies! Both groups have the same interest, and maybe together they could support pregnant women to go through the trauma of pregnancy, birth, and giving your kid up. United they would be able to give more to these women in a real way! If pro-life people we actually pro all life, and not anti gay, they could really work together!

    There are so many potential strategic alliances that we don’t even think of! Maybe the Black Lives Matter leaders should be a part of the NRA and push more “open carry” laws. Then if all black people could just openly carry their guns, they would get shot less! Everybody wins!

    Think of all these men who hate women, troll them on the Internet, and believe they are unfit to be president. Sounds like those dudes need to get laid! So let’s get them together with feminists who are fighting for legalizing prostitution so it is safer for women to practice sex work. These men will then blow their loads more often, redirect their testosterone, and sex workers could be protected under the law.

    Or what about the people who want to deport all the undocumented people in this country, and build giant walls at our borders. They blame immigrants for “taking our jobs,” and “destroying the country.” Well, the undocumented workers aren’t in a great position either. The conglomerates that hire them exploit them exactly because of their “illegal” status. So what’s the solution? Bring these two groups together to force big companies to bring industry back to America rather than outsourcing it to other countries where their people work in slave like conditions. Then there would be more jobs for Americans, and the undocumented workers could get their damn documents because we would need the extra hands to re-build the infrastructure.

    If we actually collaborated over the issues we cared about, we would be so effective! Right wing men want less government, and left wing women want less government too… in their uteruses! If Germany can make a train that creates zero emissions and farts out water then don’t you think this country can’t get its head of its ass and not destroy the planet?

    We live in a place where people very often vote against their own interests. There are poor whites that think voting for Trump is their best option, ignoring the fact that his polices and tax proposals are not in their favor. His plan for health care is to pay your own damn health bills! Good one Donald! You get it! Then there rich whites who would benefit from Trump’s policies and tax plans that would NEVER vote for him. What interesting psychologies these people have! They need to have tea and talk about why they vote against their own interests and what visions they are trying to preserve!

    Is what we want for this country really that different if we take away the sexism, racism, and extreme wealth inequality? Okay fine maybe there are Christian fundamentalists who are actively waiting for Armageddon and are looking forward to the rest of us burning in hell – but if we were all in hell together, it kinda sounds like an okay party?

    In the off chance you aren’t my Facebook friend and haven’t seen this gem 🙂

    November 3, 2016 • Current Events, Environmental Impact, Political Banter • Views: 801

  • How About We Stop Trying to Empower Women?

    Women in the Western World no longer face the same blatant discrimination of the past – we can vote, have custody of our children, and participate in the work force by being cogs in the wheel of capitalism slaving away endlessly in a soulless pursuit of wealth just like the boys! But of course that doesn’t mean sexism is behind us. The world is just as rapey as it ever – which is why I created the new “Pussy Protector” that works like a rat-trap and will tear off the hand of any presidential candidate who tries to grab yours. I’m selling them on Ebay.

    The current battle against misogyny in the Western world is a more nuanced, psychological one. A lot of progress has been made in the past 100 years, yet the lingering mental conditioning that women are inferior still remains. Empowerment has become a big theme in modern western feminism, and many think that is the solution we’ve been looking for to address the gender hierarchy. We have to empower women. Women need to be sexually empowered. Woman would be so much better if they just empowered themselves.

    But is the pursuit of POWER really what we should be encouraging?

    Power is a corrupting force. People in power are by FAR the most shady, greedy, selfish, destructive, murderous, and thoughtless people on planet earth. Power doesn’t exist in a vacuum. Power is in direct relation to what you have over others. You never have power WITH other people. That sentence doesn’t even make sense. My autocorrect hated it. You have power OVER others.

    Check it:

    Simple Definition of power
    : the ability or right to control people or things

    : political control of a country or area

    : a person or organization that has a lot of control and influence over other people or organizations

    Full Definition of power
    1
a (1) : ability to act or produce an effect (2) : ability to get extra-base hits (3) : capacity for being acted upon or undergoing an effect
b : legal or official authority, capacity, or right

    2
a : possession of control, authority, or influence over others
b : one having such power; specifically : a sovereign state
c : a controlling group : establishment —often used in the phrase the powers that be
d archaic : a force of armed men
e chiefly dialect : a large number or quantity

    3
a : physical might
b : mental or moral efficacy
c : political control or influence

    I don’t know if we want to be “empowering” women as much as we want to “disempower” everyone! Having power over others is too much for the human psyche to handle.

    I want to believe that if women had more power then we would handle it differently, but that implies women are somehow more morally high-minded then men. If we look at women that have rose through the ranks of power, Margaret Thatcher, Hillary Clinton, Angela Merkel, Dilma Rousseff… it’s not like any of them have been flawless saints. They played the game of politics and power, and compromised just like men do. There are women CEO’s for General Motors, Hewlette Packard, IBM, and I don’t see these giant corporations as righteous. These companies aren’t helping to save us from the transhumanist, apocalyptic, World War 3, nightmare that lies ahead of us.

    There are “good” women leaders, and there are “good” men leaders, but ANYONE who get’s into positions of power can be seduced into making decisions that prioritize their power over what’s best for humanity. A selfless person in power is about as easy to find as the G-spot when you’re drunk and stoned.

    When I think about the messaging I want to internalize and teach my daughter, I’m not convinced I want it to be predicated on power. I want women to be tough, feel comfortable in their own skin, and question the status quo that shapes us as people. I want to teach my daughter to be insightful, strong-willed, compassionate, thoughtful, inquisitive, empathetic, tell funny dick/vagina jokes (equal opportunity genital humor) – but most importantly I want her to be philosophical. I don’t think humanity needs more people striving for power, but more people approaching life philosophically.

    This is not a new concept; the great philosopher Socrates was assassinated by his community because he encouraged children to question authority and think for themselves. It was his belief that the ONLY people fit to be kings (he was kind of sexist in that way) were philosophers. They were the sole humans who could handle the job because they were the only ones NOT seeking power. Yet of course the tragic irony is philosophers don’t want to be kings because they understand the moral vulnerability of that position.

    I think we should be teaching our daughters and sons to seek a philosophical understanding of themselves and the world rather than suggesting a vague quest towards empowerment. Think about it. Philosophers are not slaves to materialism. They aren’t out shopping for plastic bullshit that will later be dumped in the ocean to choke an octopus. Philosophers aren’t starting wars or enacting genocide. Can you imagine a philosopher in charge of nuclear weapons? That button would never get pushed because they would spend the rest of their life with their finger hovering, pontificating endlessly about the consequences of their actions. Philosophically minded people are not violent or reckless because they are too busy peacefully staring at their belly buttons pondering the meaning of it all.
    I don’t want to be sexually “empowered” because my sex isn’t a weapon I want to lord over, or control some one with. If I am sexually attracted to someone all that means is that I’m waving my DNA flag, and he is waving his, and we happen to have enough variety where we won’t create a deformed spider-child with 7 legs. Sexual attraction has to do with biology, and I shouldn’t be told to feel powerful because someone has a different double helix than me. If I’m attracted to a dude, I want him to know, because that’s the whole point right? And if I’m not attracted to a guy, I don’t want him to be attracted to me, because that feels manipulative.

    When we equate sex with empowerment it suggests that sex is a part of power. I don’t want to feel like sex has anything to do with power. I want to be sexually free. I want to be sexually explorative to make my own decisions. I want to be sexually liberated and begin relationships with the man knowing blowjobs are a great gift I bestow upon him exclusively for birthdays and anniversaries. But I don’t need to feel powerful because I am sexy, or have sex.

    I’ve always thought sex was about genuine desire and mutual lust. But maybe I have been wrong about this?? I guess if I’d been thinking about fucking my way to the top, I wouldn’t still be at the bottom of this mountain kicking rocks. Shit you guys, did I not capitalize enough on my youth? Was it a mistake to only sleep with people I actually liked? Did I waste my 20’s fucking DJ’s, skaters, and club kids? No wonder why I’m not a millionaire – but I at least I can scratch a record and do a kick flip. I didn’t learn about power through my sexual exploits but I did learn I probably shouldn’t fuck dudes who expect me to do more than 2 positions or care about their orgasms after I’m done.

    Power dynamics exist within sexual relationships because there are power imbalances of who likes who more. But aren’t we all searching for that one relationship where power doesn’t exist? Where you love each other equally. Isn’t equality what we are seeking in every aspect of humanity? Racial, gender, and economic equality!? Fuck power… we want an even playing field!

    Power struggles are all part of the patriarchy no matter who is struggling for power. Women don’t need to be encouraged to fall into the same trappings that culture has put before us for thousands of years. Let’s abandon this way of thinking where power is what we seek and instead focus on what women are inherently talented at; building community, developing intimacy, prioritizing connection, and using methods of communication over force. I want our (potential) woman president not to solve problems with the same solution of war and violence, but instead by talking off Putin’s ear until he just gives the fuck up. Then this tension with Russian can end just like every argument between a man and woman… with the guy saying, “you’re right, I’m wrong, I’m sorry.”

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    October 20, 2016 • Current Events, Musings, Political Banter, Vagina Stuff, Women's Business • Views: 877