Santa Barbara

Year 1, Month 6, Day 6

I was blissfully unaware of what had happened in Santa Barbara until this morning.

Normally, I pay close attention to news, and read several online versions of national papers daily. My excuse is it was a holiday weekend; I was looking forward to a birthday celebration for my two-year old nephew and a long weekend with Alex. (Yes…that is going very well…and I’ll fill you in on developments with him soon.

So when I fired up my laptop this morning, and started catching up on the news, I was horrified by what I was reading.

Any mass shooting is horrible. Obviously the perpetrator is ill and it is a sad statement on our society that we can purchase guns easier than we can get our loved ones help if they suffer from a mental illness.

But, one of my friends (a male, btw) posted this link to this blog and I wanted to share parts of it with you, Gentle Readers.

Elliot Rodger is the product of a society that teaches that women are evil and men are entitled

Women are raised to not talk to strangers on the street. This is for our own safety, because we know and our mothers know that the mere act of being a woman could make certain people want to harm us. We walk with our keys in our hands like weapons, we walk in circles, we avert our eyes.

Yet, we can’t make a trip to the grocery store without some douche canoe commenting on the state of our legs, breasts or ass. And when we complain about this, we don’t get understanding, we get told that we need to take a compliment. We get told that these brave men have been kind enough to take a moment out of their day to compliment us, and that we should be grateful.

Because while we are taught to fear for our safety, men are taught that they are owed our attention. They are taught that they are owed sex, and that the only thing standing in between them and sex is the woman herself, and how dare she.

This statement hit home with me…

Being a woman means that one of the worst crimes that can possibly be committed against you is often chalked up to a “he said-she said” situation. Being a woman means having to hear the words “cry rape” on a regular basis, despite the fact that statistics show that false rape reports are extremely rare. Only about 2% of rape reports end up being considered “unfounded”–and all that means is that they couldn’t gather enough evidence. Despite this statistic, you will pretty much never stop hearing about how women “cry rape” and are constantly accusing innocent men of rape for no other reason than that they’re evil bitches.

Being a woman means that people will feel frustrated with you for daring to think you should earn as much as a man. It means you have to see a bunch of men on TV wringing their hands and worrying about “women breadwinners.” It means that on Page Six last week, Richard Johnson was suggesting that the reason Jill Abramson was fired was that she passed over qualified men who were owed those jobs in order to hire unqualified women who were not, and no one is supposed to bat an eyelash.

Being a woman means being told–by another woman, no less–that you trying to argue for your own safety, that you even talking about rape culture or talking about what men can do to prevent rape is going to “ruin college” for the mens. Stop being a downer. Stop ruining all the fun, ladies.>/p>

Being a woman means growing up in a society in which your sexuality is perceived as a weapon. In which it is considered an act of violence.  We love believing in evil women, femme fatales, etc. We live in a society where 80% of the population believes that a woman, Eve, is responsible for the loss of paradise, the loss of a beautiful, perfect society where everything is beautiful and nothing hurts. A woman is responsible for making the naked body a thing of shame. A woman who used her sexuality to corrupt the world. Whether we believe in it or not, this is our inheritance. Resentment is our inheritance. Is there any wonder there’s so much violence against us?

Being a woman means that if you aren’t interested in a man who is interested in you, he gets to think you’re a bitch. Think about that for a second–can you imagine a woman thinking a man is a jerk for daring to not like her back? Can you even fathom a woman saying “How dare he not be sexually attracted to me? I’ve been nice!” Would a man who rejected a woman be derided as “shallow?” No, because men are supposed to be shallow. It’s perfectly fine for a man to be shallow. No one would think less of a man for not being interested in a woman he wasn’t sexually attracted to, but it’s a sin for a woman to do the same.

Being a woman means that you have to hear you are a bad person for “friendzoning” a man who would prefer to be banging you. For daring to allow him to hang out with you and even listen to you without returning that favor with sex! We have to hear about how awful we are for “preferring jerks” to “nice guys,” because that is the conclusion men jump to when rejected. “It must be because she is a terrible person who only likes terrible people!” It’s no surprise that Elliot Rodger, a mass murderer, thought of himself as a “nice guy” and a true gentleman. Every woman on earth knows that the guys who complain about being “nice guys” or about being “friendzoned” are the real jerks.

Being a woman means that Elliot Rodger isn’t a surprise to you. Because you’ve met Elliot Rodger before, you’ve met his anger before, you’ve met his entitlement. You don’t have the luxury of being surprised by what he did, because you’ve been expecting it all along.

Elliot Rodger was the product of a culture that teaches male entitlement. Men are entitled to women, to sex, to jobs, to money–and if they don’t get them, then women are to blame. He felt entitled to all these things and was livid over not getting them. You don’t see women committing crimes like this because we are not taught to feel entitled to these things.

We need to stop teaching our sons that they are “entitled.”  Don’t let them get away with a” boys will be boys” attitude.  Teach them that a woman has the right to say “no” if she isn’t interested in them sexually.  And we need to teach our girls to stand up for themselves…to not be scared to tell a parent, a teacher, a minister if she is being sexually harassed, abused, or bullied.

Finally we need to teach all our children to be civil and respectful of others. To walk in others try to understand how others feel when they get picked on, laughed at, or made fun of.

I don’t want to hear more about innocent people being killed simply because they had the nerve to be in love, to be affectionate in public, to be WOMEN.

This shit has got to stop.



Here Comes the Sun

Year 1, Month 3, Day 1

Welcome back, Gentle Reader.

I’m surprised you’ve returned, considering how gloomy my last posts were.   I guess all the wintry weather and Valentine’s Day got to me more than I realized.

But, I’m over it now.

I guess it was another case of the menopause blues.  🙂

When I woke up this morning, I could see the first rays of sunlight streaming into my bedroom, I could hear birds singing outside my window, and I could feel the warmth in the air.

The “long cold lonely winter” is nearly over.

Granted, I’m still not in a real relationship…I’m still in love with Peter… and I’m still looking for a full-time job.

But, the flip side is:

  • I know what I am looking for in a man (and I’m not going to settle)
  • I have the wisdom gained from my past relationships to guide me
  • I had a very promising job interview last week

In other words, things are starting to turn around for Lizzie.

I know it is trite to say what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, but it really does.  I recognized the signs I was about to slide into another extended period of depression, and I’m nipping it in the bud.   I am going to live in the present and let the past go.  I am actually grateful for the experiences I have had over the last six years.

I look back and smile, because the last six years made me who I am NOW… stronger and wiser.

I KNOW I’m not a silver medalist.  I KNOW I’m not second best.  I KNOW I am going to find my Mr. Darcy.

Here comes the sun…
Here comes the sun…and I say…
It’s all right…

Going for the Gold

Year One, Month 2, Day 29

Gold, Silver, Bronze

I enjoy the Olympics…particularly the Winter Games.

I love the grace and beauty of figure skating.  I admire the sheer bravery of the sliding athletes (bobsled, luge and skeleton).   The stunts in Freestyle skiing and half pipe snowboarding are astonishing.

It’s great to see the best athletes in the world compete and win.   And, I always feel a little bad for the silver medalist.  To paraphrase Jerry Seinfeld, “You’re the best of the losers.  Nobody lost better than you.”  Sure, it’s funny.  But it’s true.

These kids work, train, and give up their lives to achieve their dreams of Olympic glory. And then to miss the gold medal by 1/100 of a second must be heartbreaking.

While they make the medal stand and glad to be there, part of them has be a little sad at coming up second best.

That’s a feeling I know all too well, Gentle Reader.

And I hate it.

I have had a few stark reminders the last couple weeks that I am, for some reason, always second best when it comes to men.

I waited in vain for Robert to propose. I settled for being Peter’s dirty little secret…. not just last year but when we first dated in 1989.   Troy had other plans and things that were more important than me. I fucked a married guy and allowed him to walk away scot-free. And I now find myself in a sexual relationship with a man while I continue looking for my Mr. Darcy.

I’m not sure why men never see me as the prize.  I’m intelligent, funny, not unattractive, loving, loyal, passionate and caring.   I’m a great cook, and not afraid to use power tools or change a tire. I don’t need a man to complete me…but I do want one to complement me.

I am a happier and more stable person than I was this time a year ago, but I know the chances of finding love, at my age, are slim.

Why do men ALWAYS see me as the back up girl…the bridesmaid…the silver medalist?

Is it because I see myself as second best; not worthy of being a man’s first choice?

That’s a thought that’s going to fester, Gentle Readers.

I’m tired of coming in second.

I want that gold medal.