Use Your Words…Part Deux

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On Tuesday, we were able to participate in a primary election for the Wisconsin Supreme Court. I went in the afternoon during a pouring rainstorm to our new voting venue at the Library to a room full of Senior Citizen volunteers. I’m guessing it was a slow day due to the lackluster voting issue (which actually is quite huge but folks tend to get more upset as to what’s happening in Washington rather than local/state issues) and the pouring rain. Nontheless, I risked melting and ran over during an afternoon break.

One table of volunteers were giving me instruction on putting the ballot into the little grabber machine and then the woman said, “Once it accepts the ballot, it will salute you.” Cool, I’ll wait on that shit. That sounds fun. About 15 seconds later, words came up on the screen that said that ballot has been accepted. So I waited. Eventually, the woman said, “Well, it doesn’t actually salute you, it just tells you the ballot is accepted.”

You can empathize with my disappointment. I mean, I’ve never received a salute before and I was pretty stoked. Some machine I’ve never even met was going to salute me just cuz I voted. Fucking sweet! And then BAM! A cold dose of reality was thrown in my face. No salute. I turned around and said I was waiting for a salute which seemed to annoy HER! Like, okay, I’m totally the crazy one here waiting for a salute when you said I had one coming.

Look people, the word salute means a very specific thing. It means, well, salute. Either A) a gesture of respect, homage, or polite recognition or acknowledgment, especially one made to or by a person when arriving or departing or 2. make a formal salute to. Neither of these things happened. What a rip.

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Benny Hill, the original sexual harasser. Don’t even care, his shit was funny.

I wrote the other day about using our words vs. sharing useless, cruel meme’s that mean nothing except to make yourself feel superior and make others feel like a dumbass. Learn to express yourself with words. I equate a political meme to a grunt from a punky 13 year old who can’t be bothered with actually giving an answer when told to do his chores (Oz tried this once. Once.)

However; when using your words, you need to ensure that they are being used correctly. Lawds (as my girl Liv would say), the amount of stupidity as Crossfit was up and coming because they were relabeling exercises that had existed for hundreds of years. No fucknutt, there isn’t a Crossfit Kettlebell swing. You just took the name that already existed, Kettlebell swing, and added a fucked up way to do it. The other day, Matt was looking for a gym to train at in unknown territory (for those that don’t know, my hot hunky hubs is often a road warrior but since his travels take him largely to the same region he has history on where to find a good gym.) We found a small, black iron’ish gym and he figured he could go there. Upon further reading; however; he would have to demonstrate proficiency in their squat method. Well fuck, it doesn’t matter that any day of the week the man can jump off a plane and squat over 600 pounds, he may be doing it “wrong and not uniform to their methods” so can’t train at this gym. Who’s fucked up in that scenario?

If I walked into a gym and said I needed to squat and the front desk guy started drilling me on which method I used, I’d be hard pressed to stay. See, I used my words. Squat. This would insinuate a back squat where one could assume a rack may be necessary and if I need spotters, I’ll let you know. Because the word squat means just that. (Now, if I need to AIR squat, I’ll just stay at the hotel. If I needed to FRONT squat, I’d probably need much of the above minus spotters. If I needed to GOBLET squat, I’d fill that shit with wine and be feeling super good by the end of the session.) But we don’t have to pretend we’re not communicating. Because I used my words. Squat.

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According to the internet, this is a Grandfather/Granddaughter salute. Pretty awesome, eh?

I have been very confused the last year and a half with so many people of all walks of life getting press time from the MSM because they have claimed that President Trump is mentally ill. Actors; other politicians, even friends have spread this across social media and it confuses me. See, mentally ill has meaning. Many actually. Dementia (if you love someone who had or has Alzheimer’s you wouldn’t joke about Alzheimer’s); Bipolar Disorder; Clinical Depression, among others. Mentally Ill has meaning and is actually a complicated issue to diagnose. To my knowledge, Rob Reiner doesn’t have a license to practice medicine. So why does he keep saying words that have an established meaning and no one in the Mental Health industry is screaming from the rooftops to Shut The Fuck Up? Does it even occur to people that when they label another human being Mentally Ill because they don’t agree with their views or just don’t like them, that that’s actually a pretty big deal? Because there really ARE people who are mentally ill who we can’t make fun of. Cuz that’s not nice, or even accurate. Jeezus, if I can’t call someone who does something stupid but funny a retard, you can’t call someone you disagree with Mentally Ill. IT’S THE EXACT SAME FUCKING THING!

Here’s one that is so despicable (without the awesome Minions); Hitler. People like to say President Trump  is “worse than Hitler.”  Look, Adolf Hitler was a pretty bad guy. I believe we can all agree to that. His policies and reign included millions of murders. When you use the word, “Hitler”, there can be only one. To accuse someone who has not even remotely behaved in such a way (his daughter is Jewish, idiots) is so incredibly dismissive and disrespectful to the victims AND survivors of Hitler I can’t for the life of me understand how easily it rolls of people’s tongues. Just because you disagree with someone doesn’t mean you can immediately begin calling them names that have a very specific meaning. See, we teach this in pre-school and have million dollar anti-bullying campaigns that say so. What kind of message are you sending your snowflakes when you tell them they don’t have to take bullying but then behave as a bully?

I am a woman. This has a very specific meaning. I am married. This has a very specific meaning. I am short. This is rather subjective (I just really love meeting people shorter than me. Sorry not sorry.) I am a mother. Again, specific. I have a dog. Specific. See, there are people who want to live in a world where I can say, “I identify today as a woman of Pacific Island descent but may identify in another way tomorrow who is married but is open to having other relationships because we have an open marriage (we don’t, settle down) and sometimes identify as 6’4 with other day’s 5’5 and some days I’m a mother but other days I identify as a gender neutral role model with a lion who, on other days, is a dog.

Well fuck, that’s super confusing. So I’ll just stick to using my words in the way they were written and HAVE BEEN UNDERSTOOD FOR HUNDREDS OF YEARS. And when I describe other people or things or places, I use my words there too. SCOTLAND is beautiful; amazing, and I drink too much there. My HUSBAND is someone I am legally and emotionally bound to (and super hunky.) My DOG is a dog. I don’t make something it’s not because it makes me feel better to do so and then find friends who also make up new meanings for words because it makes THEM feel better to do so and then go have fun by calling people names because it makes us feel better to do so. That’s not adulting luv, that’s being a childish cunt.

Don’t be a childish cunt.

As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.

President Kennedy 

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A son salute’s his father.

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Monday Bacon: Use Your Words

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Last Saturday, I road tripped to the Chicago area and trained with a group of weightlifters in Tom Sroka’s gym. It was beyond awesome. Great people with great energy coached by a great coach. I could beat myself up about not heading down to train earlier, I won’t. I’m here now and as life allows, I’ll be back.

Lifters of all levels occupy the platforms and the organized chaos of a meet warm-up area that I love is exactly what to expect here as nearly 20 lifters share space in strong harmony. While there was no shortages of smiles and laughs, each lifter worked hard and implemented the changes Tom would cue. Lifts were made, lifts were missed and overall it was one of my most favorite training sessions to date. Personally, I can say without a shadow of a doubt that, as long as I stay healthy,  training with Tom around these people will bring my lifting to another level. It already has. I’m stoked and so thankful.

Frankly, I needed it. I needed to be around people with focused goals and positive energy. With enough discipline and drive to show hard work can be fun without being distracting. I needed that. America has had a tough week. Another school shooting has brought out the social media warriors in force. And I’m over it. Children and their teachers died. That’s sad. Can’t we be sad without being angry? The parents and families of the victims, they (I imagine) will have plenty of anger to process over the years. My heart aches for them.

Frustrated? Yes, I’m frustrated but not angry. I’m frustrated that gun free zones still exist. I’m not going to share a meme about it, I can use my words since I’ve passed the 5th grade when we were taught to do so. I understand that there are a whole group of people who disagree and believe all guns should be banned. In all honesty, I like that Utopian notion that all people are good and any type of weapons are silly because we’ll just all get along. No more assaults; rape; murders; drunk driving/text driving deaths; bullying; accidental deaths; child abuse, or disease. But for today, no more school shootings. We get to send out kids to school with the main stress being is there enough money in the lunch account and did my kid hand in his homework (Oz went through a phase where he actually DID his homework but then didn’t hand it in. Somehow it made sense to him. I’m glad that phase is over)?

I don’t want to have to worry about him sitting in school utterly defenseless because the sign at the front door says that guns are not allowed on campus but then someone brings in guns to kill utterly defenseless children and staff. I don’t want to worry about that. But I do. It’s terrifying. Others who’s fears are realized are living with that today. That breaks my heart and at the same time, I’m so thankful that as of 9:30 this morning, my Oz is safe (mostly because he has school off for Presidents Day.) Those are the two feelings that are dominating all else, fear and thanks. Kinda confusing.

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photo credit: Ansel Adams

Unfortunately, along with those (I believe) very honest and probably common feelings, is complete disgust.

On my way home from Chicago (no, Tom’s gym isn’t in Chicago per say but anything south of Kenosha gets lumped into Chicago. Not even sorry) on Saturday after amazing lifting and an awesome breakfast with my friend Heather (another lifter and absolutely stellar human being) I listened to the afternoon replay of the Dr. Laura show. One mom, barely holding it together (Dr. Laura is usually pretty stern with crying callers, since she let this one go I was immediately curious what was going on) whose young daughter was in another building on the Florida campus where the shootings occurred and was on lockdown for over two hours while they could hear screams from the high school building.

Let that sink in. There were students in other buildings on campus who listened to the screams of the older students while their doors remained locked and they huddled under their desks in complete fear. Defenseless. Are they next? What do we do. I want my mom/dad/anyone to take me away from this fear.

What does that picture want to make you do? Me? I just want to gather my kids and squeeze. I don’t want to attack others for a different point of view that I disagree with. I don’t want to share some useless, cruel meme on social media that is just useless and cruel. I just want to hold my kids. I want them to know I love them and there is nothing I’d do to TRY to keep them safe. Not unusual most likely.

Among other pieces of advice for this mom, Dr. Laura told her to make sure she and her daughter and the rest of the family attend public memorials for the students. As many as possible without overwhelming her daughter. Because in times of senseless tragedy, we need each other. We need people around us who also hurt and can’t make sense of why this is happening. Not to place blame or further a political narrative, but to further human contact. Hugs. Making posters. Laying down flowers. Catching a glimpse of a grieving parent across the crowd and sending them your love and sadness.

That’s how we make things better. Because we are stronger together (sound familiar?)

Geez, I needed to hear that. The two days prior to this my social media was inundated with social media warriors. Equally from the NO GUNS EVER! crowd and the WE NEED GUNS, IDIOTS! crowd. Rhetoric. Useless. The opposite of pulling together to grieve and lifting each other up (you’re going to have to find a gym like Sroka’s for that.)

Mass texts were sent by progressive liberal Auntie’s declaring why guns need to be banned. A meme was shared by a lifter acquaintance (that is no more) that perhaps if “school” was replaced with “uterus” then republicans would actually care about the deaths. By the way? As a voting republican most of the time who is also pro-choice, that was very sick. Sick. It is dehumanizing and sick. I never need to know someone who takes energy to share such things. Ever.

I read an account of a father and his wife whose daughter was shot and killed. There was a picture on social media of him holding his daughter’s picture asking for any information since he was unable to contact her. Because he was wearing a ‘Trump 2020’ shirt in the photo, multiple people commented on the picture that they hoped she was dead since he was a Trump supporter. That happened. That actually fucking happened. Well, congratulations people, she was dead. Feel better?

Children died. Teachers died. Others huddled in fear for hours. We don’t need to spread more hate. We need to prioritize actions and use our words. If you believe guns are necessary on campus’ to avoid further mass shootings/assaults/rape (something I believe in) then what can be done to further that reality on the political side. Real things, not sharing stupid meme’s. If you believe all guns should be banned except those by the police, then what are you doing to fight the “gun lobby” other than sharing useless meme’s?

Can we try both? Arm security guards and those teachers who legally conceal and carry and see what happens when a shooter tries to enter their building with mass death being the objective? For one year, just try it. On the flip side, stop protesting when an officer shoots an unarmed criminal posing a threat to the office or others and killing them is the quickest option to ensure the safety of others. Headlines of “Police shoot unarmed black man” will quickly go away because at the end of the day that’s what the goal was. Taking guns away from citizens and keeping them only in the hands of police/government. Can we try that and see how it works? Action is far better than hateful meme’s, at least I believe that to be so and it’s my blog.

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photo credit: Ansel Adams

I’ve talked before how careful I guard the energy around me. I am diligent in surrounding myself with good people who are driven and thoughtful and smart and interesting and good. Notice, I didn’t say “people who agree with everything I say.” I don’t do that. I do surround myself with people who value friends more than points of view. At the end of the day, if our points of view are so vastly different the friendship may fade. That happens. I’ve been close to people who’s food views are so opposite of what mine are that I walked away. I can’t watch as people with food sickness push that same food sickness onto their children and know that those children (especially the daughters) are going to spend the next 40 or so years battling the same food sickness. I’m not going to remain an unwilling participant simply because we’re friends. I walk.

Late last week, I realized that the same must be done with social media. I don’t need to agree with everything I see on social media but I do need to make sure that the energy it brings falls in line with what I demand of real life. Not always positive, but never cruel. Not always silly and fun, but never demeaning. I can do that. Also, I have a blog so I can use my words. No meme’s, just words. And Ansel Adams.

A good photograph is knowing where to stand.

Ansel Adams

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Leafy

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A park bench bolted to the ground so it can never move while leaves are blowing about. Hmmmmm…

A few summers back, the hubs and I went to his Uncle and Auntie’s house for a summer garden dinner. What that meant was that most of the evening was outside on the patio surrounded by various gardens. One being a Disney garden so amongst the plants and flowers were Disney figurines bobbing in and out of eye sight. It was adorable. In fact, I left my Hawaii Donald Duck there to live among his peeps.

We had cocktails and Port (in fact, they opened and shared their very last bottle of Port bought when they got married. It was very sweet) and amazing food and lots of laughs. Matt’s Auntie is Greek and the Uncle is Lithuanian/Scot/European and together they make a very good mix. Both fun loving and two of the kindest people I know. It pains me that we haven’t made it back there since but the nearly 3 hour drive each way is enough to drag our feet a bit on getting another date on the calendar.

One of the more interesting caveats is that Auntie is a far left Progressive liberal and well, we’re not. Which means that we are subject to listening to her views but since we’re guests, we don’t get to share our rebuttal. Ah well, a small price to pay for grilled shrimp and steaks. The outrage of the day during our dinner was the topic of the Confederate flag. Auntie was outraged. And I mean OUTRAGED! How DARE they fly such a racist symbol of racism and oppression and fok them those backwards racists. Racism.

Uhhhhh, okay. I mean, were you outraged last week about the Confederate flag? Last month? Last year? Or were you just outraged cuz the media is telling you now to be outraged? Here’s my take on the Confederate flag…I give no shits. I’m not from the South. My great, great uncle and 14 cousins weren’t killed fighting for something they believed in under that flag. I have no dogs in this fight. I chose not to be outraged by things were I have no dogs in the fight. I whill say that while spending time up north in Connecticut (I actually spelled that correctly the first time out, I’m pretty proud) at a cemetery, there were headstones for sons and fathers who died on some Southern battlefield during the Civil War. I imagine there are many of those stones in the South also. It is extremely moving. I believe any time we can dig deeper and make issues personal, we find that we’re actually not far off agreement. Those headstones spoke for loved ones gone but not forgotten, no matter which flag they fought for. So if y’all in the South want to wave the flag that your ancestors fought and died for, well, you just do that and know that others won’t understand. Especially Greek Auntie’s in Chicago.

While I get very tired of the “Flavor of the Day” outrage, I’m pretty good at insulating myself from it. I guess there was some uproar about a snowboarder yesterday who won a gold medal and then dragged the American flag on the snow? Dunno. Like I wrote yesterday, I’m not getting dragged into the cesspool of the MSM and their Olympic coverage (see what I did there? Heehee.) I DID happen to watch the greatest Women’s hockey game of all time between the US and Canada. I wish Coach Stauber would have challenged the second goal but whatev. If these teams meet again in the medal round, it will be amazing!

But none of this, well very little anyway, has to do with my point today.

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New Hampshire leaves

Leaves serve amazing functions in our world. There is a reason folks flock to thick forests that have clear lakes smack dab in the middle of them. We breath in the fresh air; we can be still in it’s thickness and enjoy the sounds of the water lapping about the lakeshore. Time can be lost sitting on the rocks of streams, should be lost actually. Very few things are emotionally satisfying as just sitting on rocks and listening to water while looking up into the forests. This is why the Steven’s Pass road in Washington is one of my most favorite drives. Sharing it with Oz a couple of years ago was incredibly special and I know I’ve told it before but I’m telling this story again…

While we were driving, I told  Oz to keep a lookout on where we could pull over and go climb the rocks in the stream. He says, “We can do that?” I says, “Oh ya.” Tell you what, seeing my 16 year old son who so often has maturity beyond his years  and tends to put the world on his shoulders play on those rocks like an 8 year old was one of the best moments of the entire trip.

Anyways. Back to leaves.

As most of us know (I assume nothing), leaves will eventually fall and die to prepare for the next batch in the spring (assuming you’re not an Evergreen.) This is why so many of us love the Fall season. Leaves are turning color which give tree lined streets a beautiful orangey/red-y glow. Leaves are raked into huge piles for the kids and dog to jump into or, if you’re lucky, blow into your fucknutt neighbors yard who spends his days trying to make his space leaf free.

Leaves blowing about can be fun to watch, even mesmerizing. But it always made me a little sad. The reality of another summer gone; no more cabin trips; no more softball games. Just cold and ice and snow for the next six months. It was always a little confusing for me because I love winter. Absolutely LOVE IT! I love the snow and the cold and, well not the ice so much, everything winter brings. Soups and shoveling (Mother Nature gives no shits that you have a meet on Saturday. You will shovel that foot of snow she dumped or be stuck inside.)

What I’ve learned is that I don’t dislike fall, I just don’t like the uncertainty of it. Will it be 70 degrees or 30? Will it rain or snow? If I rake today will I be done for the year (the answer to that is always NO.) Watching the leaves blow about in the winds chaos is unsettling. There’s no direction, no purpose. And if you’ve known me for more than 4 minutes, you know I have direction. Not even sorry.

Here’s the crux of the day, how many people do you know who allow themselves to live like leaves? Without direction or purpose? And this, my friends, is my biggest issue with those who choose to be outraged by the flavor of the day. You’re like leaves, just blowing about waiting to hit the next light pole to briefly stop and complain and move on. Distractions are easy and moving quickly to fill social media with outrage that, if you just give the wind a moment, the issue will blow over.

And it’s not just politics. It’s work; it’s training; it’s relationships. How many people do you see on Social Media who are trying the next best thing that avoids the most important steps of laying down a solid foundation? Diet fads; lifting timing schemes; training programs. Blowing in the wind just waiting to latch on, however briefly, to a cool thing until it becomes work and then moving on. I’ve fired people from my gym for this attitude. Get your uncommitted energy out of my gym. You’re full of shit. You live your life saying one thing and doing another. I’ve fired people from my life for this.

I cannot be around people who lack direction for a significant amount of time. To be honest, many Master’s Highland Games women are like this. (That’s going to sting a few folks. Sorry not sorry.) The Games are oh so fun and let me be so energetic and entertaining…until the 4th event. The fourth event (watch for it at your next Games) is usually when the leaves start falling. You realize that you probably have three more hours of this stuff and it’s only getting harder. You start wandering over to your tent and need to be called over for every attempt not even caring that your group of fellow throwers are waiting on your ass. You’ve taken your FB pictures and drank your scotch and really, that’s all we need to do for the day cuz this stuff is only supposed to be fun. If only we could rake you into a pile off the field and move on.

Non throwing related, our close friends have purpose. They have drive. We can disagree on politics but show an understanding of the other side’s reasoning and at the end of the day, politics are never more important than friendship. February has been filled with almost all of our closest friends and that, my friends, makes for a very good month. Quite honestly, never in my life had I ever believed we would be surrounded by such good people who accomplish so many amazing things and so freely share their gifts and love. Not one of our closest friends are leaves blowing in the wind. They are solid. They strive to live their best lives possible. I am so proud of each and every one of them.

It’s so easy to be leafy in our world because, mostly, our survival doesn’t depend on being driven. If mommy hasn’t kicked you out of her basement by your 30’s, well, you just know you’re going to stay attached to that teat until she’s six feet under. If you were the son of my Grandpa’s, you got a suitcase for your 18th birthday. Not even kidding. You’ve done well, now get out. No leafs in his bloodline. The Olympics? See, stupid NBC commentators, we don’t need to ask how it “feels to be there” cuz there are no leaves at the Olympics. It’s not like they woke up in November and said, oh hey, maybe I’ll just blow over to that speed skating rink and skate and then go to the Olympics. No. They’ve been driven for a very long time. OH! One of my FAVORITE moments in figure skating stupid interviewing came when Andrea Joyce asked the German woman pairs skater (skating in her 5th Olympics) what “current you would tell 18 year you on your first Olympics to make it better?” The Fraulein just looked at her blankly and after about 10 seconds admitted she didn’t understand the question. AJ went on to say, “I imagine experience helps” where the German visibly tried not to roll her eyes and said something to the effect of, “obviously.” Don’t like it when other countries athletes don’t fall at your feet in worship, do you NBC?

One of the hardest things in life is to stop. Just. Fucking. Stop. Stop blowing around in chaos and be still. There is no scramble, there is a plan  (then shut up about it and just do. My gawds, the amount of declarations made on social media boggles the mind.. I’d rather see video of someone curling their hair.) While leaves can be beautiful, structuring your life in alignment to theirs is a bad idea. You wonder how your life got raked into the gutter when you’ve been so busy at so many things. Stop believing that blowing about in life is going to get your goals accomplished. Stop looking at others wondering how they’re doing it and you’re not. Just stop. Breath. Plan. And then put on those blinders and become undistractable (totally a word.)

First I shake the whole apple tree, that the ripest might fall. Then I climb the tree and shake each limb, and then each branch and then each twig, and then I look under each leaf.

Martin Luther

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Vicious Queen: The Sad State of Affairs of USA Figureskating

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Terry Gannon (I adore the look on his face here); Tara Lipinski, and Johnny Weir. (The first person to comment his name as Johnny Queer gets blocked from fake social media life and real life. We’re going to be better than that today.)

This post will be very, Get off my lawn. Cuz I get it. I’m old. I’m extremely traditional in what I’m looking for in Olympic commentary and review and I am most likely in the minority here. That’s okay. I can deal with that.

Anyways.

Years ago, my daughter and I were jonesing for a burger. It was a Saturday night so not the greatest time to head out on the town for a meal crowd wise, but we decided to go for it. We picked our favorite hamburger joint, Hamburger Mary’s in their old location in Bayview.

Now, we’d been to HM’s many times and in fact, before the gym went up here, it was our post lifting Saturday spot and we always had good luck with the food and service. Now, I will admit, we were the lucky ones. We did see others walk out when they had to sit for 15-20 minutes without even a glance by wait staff but we’d been spared that. One Saturday, Oz and his dad were tooling around town and decided to meet us there. Well, they took longer than expected and we were all finished by the time they got there. We said hello and goodbye and left them in the good hands of our waitress…we thought.

Turns out our waitress was done for the morning and headed home for a break before the night shift. So they got some guy who had just been dumped by his boyfriend and sobbing in the backroom the entire time they were trying to get a burger. After 30 minutes with just a glass of water sitting in front of them, they left. I felt bad.

HM is also known for their drag shows and drag Bingo. I hadn’t made it to either but one burger Saturday, one of the Drag Queens was tooling about (I think her name is Dear Ruthie or something like that) and I asked if she’d take a picture with Matt. She was very gracious and when Matt stood up, her eyes got wide and she commented on how BIGG he really is. It was a cute moment and a great picture. It’s over on the FB somewhere.

Because of our good luck and their tasty burgers, Zandra and I took on HM’s on a Saturday night. While there was a lot of people waiting, it turned out that they were big groups and none could fit in the open 4 top so Za and I were seated right away. SWEET!

Our waitress was busy but did her best and we had a nice meal. There was a group over in one corner who was a bit discontent with their waiter and getting louder by the minutes but we were finishing up and didn’t really pay attention, as much as that was possible. For some reason, their waiter came to OUR table and made a nasty comment while giving us our check and told us to get out of there. Uhhhh, what? WTF dude, we have nothing to do with you. Why you mad bro at us??

I had paid in cash so was waiting for our change from our waitress who had come back and was surprised to see our check at the table. I had told her that a very rude waiter told us to pay and get out. I’m guessing this isn’t the first time that this had happened because she looked sad and apologized profusely. Whatev, no worries, just get us our change please so we can get out of here.

I guess she had told the powers that be that crabby dude had overstepped at our table and I wasn’t happy about it because he quickly hot stepped over to us, grabbed my shoulder and squeezed for a few seconds and said something more nasty. Dude, you just put your hands on a customer who had nothing to do with you. Well, that was enough to get Zandra fumed and she instantly stood up and started barking at our waitress (who must have known this wasn’t going to go well because she was lurking behind our table) that this was completely unacceptable. The waitress apologized and I asked to speak to a Manager.

A manager came over and I asked to speak to him privately and we moved off into a corner. I started to tell him about this bizarre treatment when suddenly, crabby waiter man RAN over to us; brushed me back with his chest and got nose to nose with me screaming at me how I’m a complete homophobic bitch/cunt and fuck me and get out of his restaurant. I just looked at the manager and asked if he were seriously going to allow this and he said nothing.

We left. Obviously. And I torched them on Yelp and sent an email to their management group. But the hits just keep on coming. By Sunday afternoon, they had commented on my Yelp review that they watched “the video” provided by surveillance and actually it showed that I had become aggressive with the waiter and pushed him around. Of course, I couldn’t see such video because it belonged to them. Also, because they were lying.

Needless to say, it was quite distressing. I started to look back on the Yelp reviews and yup, our friend had made impacts such as this for years. There was complaint after complaint about him and how aggressive and mean he was. Uhhhhh, okay, why is he still there?

I asked that question to my Hawaiian clients who have been in the food biz for a combined 80 years and they had two answers: 1. Because he’s probably sleeping with one of the owners and B. HM’s is KNOWN for having vicious queen’s in their restaurants. Uhhhh, what? What’s a vicious queen?  That, they replied. Just what I experienced emboldened by the fact that they get away with it every day.

Yuck. I don’t like vicious queen’s. Nope, they said, no one does.

It was my first experience (not my last) being called homophobic. What was worse, I was physically assaulted by a man who believes that he can do whatever he wants because he’s homosexual and if someone fights back, then THEY’LL be in the wrong for beating on a homosexual. I can tell you this, as a woman who rarely backs down, it was a very distressing situation. I should have called the police, turns out I wouldn’t have been the first.

Fast forward to 4 years ago. Actually, we’ll fast forward to about 45 years ago. That’s when I first remember loving figure skating. I loved everything about it. I loved flying around the ice; I loved watching it; I loved the smell of the warming house; I loved grabbing a shovel and being the first on the ice and having to push the snow off to the side into a big pile you could jump into. I loved the sounds of the hockey game going on next to the skating rink and I loved the tinny music blaring over the outdoor speaker.

I loved making pom poms for my skates and giving them to my friends. I loved skating with friends, and I loved skating alone. By the time I was 8 or 9, I could walk to the rink by myself (which I’m actually kind of surprised about because I had to cross a four lane super busy road but such is life growing up in the 70’s) and I’d spend hours there. One evening, it was too cold to skate and the warming house was closed. So I just laced up in the snow and did my thing. I don’t know how long I was out there but I DO remember my mom pulling up and screaming at me to get off the ice and into the car and do I want to freeze to death?!!!! I mean, no I didn’t. I just wanted to skate.

Of course, my favorite days were the Olympics.

vicious1

Dorthy Hamill. I always loved how athletic she seemed.

A whole week with skating on TV. With commentators Dick Button and Peggy Flemming. Maybe even an appearance by Janet Lynn. They’d talk about the beauty of Sonja Henie in hushed, revered tones. You knew when Dick Button gave compliments, they were special. Cuz Dick was tough. I remember that. It’s probably why they sat Peggy Flemming next to him. To soften some of his criticism. Before that, Chris Schankle gave his calm play by play while Dick kept us abreast as to what was happening style wise. (Also, I miss the easy scoring of 5.8 or 6.0. The “new” scoring takes the audience out of the excitement. Again, GET OFF MY LAWN.)

But he was always succinct in his criticism. He always explained WHY a skater stumbled without stumbling. You understood what he said and could go back and watch the rerun of the skate and it made sense. He was never unkind, he was a technician. Still is actually. More on that in a minute.

Okay, back to four or so years ago in Sochi. I was instantly put off by the over the top pair of Tara and Johnny commentating. I dunno. They just seemed young and immature and wanted ALL the attention that belonged to the skaters. They were mean, but more importantly, they didn’t explain their criticisms. They said things like, “that was just horrible.” Okay, that’s not helpful. WHY was it horrible? Was the whole thing horrible or just the obvious fall? Basically, they took substance and threw it out the window and we were just supposed to be entertained by his lipstick and pearls and jabs at overweight skaters.

No thanks. See, the vicious queen from HM’s had the same qualities. You have to respect me and listen to me because I exist and if you don’t, you’re homophobic. Uh, no Johnny. I don’t like listening to you because you are mean and unhelpful and want to hog all the attention only because you ARE a vicious queen.  I chose not to watch.

So I don’t. Or at least I try not to. I did watch some of the US Nationals and I will say that both Johnny and Tara were far more subdued than past “performances.” One of my favorite Sochi ice moments was in studio when NBC gave Doc Emrick head mic with Tara and Johnny relegated to side chairs and clearly looked out of their element around real, respected commentators. Also, Tara looked as if she had been drinking hard for the past 12 days and didn’t even try to hide it anymore and Johnny just looked scared. I loved it. See, they KNOW that they are head queens in just one avenue of sport. But Doc can walk in and take over not because of his ego, but because of his skill. Well done, Doc, well done.

Any of my Olympic watching this year has been on NBCsn. Where the commentators explain the sport and what to look for. Where stupid interviews that begin with either, “What does it mean for you to be here…” or “Tell me how you’re feeling…” are non-existent.

OH, and to the little Johnny in training who, honestly, wow’d me with his program at Nationals but when announced to the Olympic team instantly started bashing politicians for being Anti-Gay but then when said politicians reached out to them to sit down and talk about accusations, quickly retreated to the “this is about the athletes” and then went on to joke about needing booze and Xanax from the judges to relax before his program…well, I’m just out. By the way, those are banned substances. So you know. So joking about taking banned substances on a live interview was super funny. You funny guy. Of course, if any weightlifter had publicly joked about needed booze and blow before they lifted AFTER they lifted, well, that may not be so adorably received.

But such is the state of affairs. As long as you’re not intolerant (which I am), you can accuse and joke about anything and are untouchable by the compliant media who just want to talk about how good North Korean dictators actually are and really anything else that is Anti-American.

OH! One perk of the Olympics is the heat the American media keep getting into because they say such moronic statements like the Dutchies actually skate on frozen canals to work or the Koreans really respect the Japanese in spite of brutal occupation. See, this is our snowflake media who are used to saying whatever they want in America and as long as it’s Anti-American or Anti-Trump, they are never called out on fact checking. But when exposed to the world, well, not so much. Then other countries have something to say about it. Hey Dutchies, welcome to our world.

So the vicious queens have ruined hamburgers and figure skating for me. Oh well, I’ve enjoyed luge and curling and biathlon and cross-country sprint races. Last night NBC had the audacity to barge their way into NBCsn for pairs figure skating so I had to listen to moments of the dud duo for seconds while I searched for the remote to turn the channel.

And oh, by the way? Dick Button is still teaching…

Get ready for the live events tonight. If you’re watching the ladies or the ice dancing, try to watch their feet instead of their fannies. It’s the edging that counts!

He threw this out there on his FB page on Saturday. Also, Scott Hamilton and some blonde have great preview commentary on NBCsn. But I guess great commentary isn’t what NBC is looking for.

 

 

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