Tag Archives: single mother

Men Who Hurt the World

men4aI should begin by disclosing that I am a feminist. However, I am by no means someone who denigrates either sex. To be a modern feminist is to see a patriarchal world as a giant even playing field for any gender. But, it is behind this blurred lens of equality that I routinely witness some terrifying trends of global behavior.

History has rewarded men with inflated egos, wolfish greed, insatiable sex drives, abusive proclivities, and domineering DNA. Tyrants and despots set on slaughtering the less formidable to conquer and subjugate natives in the name of imperialism were hailed as victors and kings.

Compensating for a lack of personal prowess by unabashedly executing or manipulating those who were too weak or ill-equipped to defend themselves was practically a right of passage for autocrats like Mao Zedong.

We live in a world of war and perpetual power upheavals. The notion of simply living in harmony is so far removed from the collective consciousness that it feels like fiction. But, what is the catalyst at the core of the chaos?

Simple. Masculine. Ego.

Perhaps being raised by a single mother has strapped blinders to the sides of my sideburns, but I just don’t get it. Are sex and violence and domination and control such attractive entities that it’s comfortable walking through bloodshed with your ostentatious head held high? Is the suffering of innocent people in the name of greed and avarice so lucrative that it’s worth lacerating the fabric of your own culture?

If the answer is yes, the argument is sewn. There is no extinguishing the fire-eyed focus of a madman. Our only options are to sit quietly on the chessboard, played as pawns for some oppressor’s amusement. Or, we stand up to these crotch-grabbing, gun-toting, yacht-collecting psychopaths and take the power back.

Checkmate.

There Are Voices In My Apartment

dj2Having been raised by a single mother, with no siblings wrestling for attention or screaming to be noticed, I became quite accustomed to the sanctity of silence. I could sit on the floor, lost in isolated make believe, organizing my action figures and creating layered scenarios for their roles in my narrative. There was very little interruption, and as a result, I became fairly comfortable wearing my own skin.

These patterns continued for most of my life. I slid into the safety of a quiet, dark room, and I found I was most productive and clear when the rest of the world disappeared into sleep. All the static of the day seemed to melt beneath the sound of a steady hum. I found keyboards and computer screens, books and balance.

But, for the last decade, a new variety of brain food has worked its way onto my plate. I fear I have become addicted to podcasts.

Now, I’m not actively seeking an intervention. I don’t think it’s quite at that point. But the sounds of endless interviews, medical information, human interest stories, comedic discourse, public radio pieces, fitness advice, and pop culture references have permeated my living space to the point of lunacy.

This isn’t entirely harmful. I’ve got a hungry head, and it needs its snacks. But, floating on a comfort cloud of strangers’ voices can do a pretty great job of bamboozling you into thinking there’s more than one cook in the kitchen. It’s like a big, fat audio comfort blanket, and I’m swaddled like a preemie on the prairie.

So, I will continue to walk into that dark unknown, ears open and mind alert. But, be prepared for some lengthy conversations when our paths finally cross. I’ve logged a lot of listening hours, and I’ve got some things to share.