Do What Thou Wilt but Harm None

How Everyone’s Bad Behavior is Turning Me Into One Angry Woman

“Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.” or “The only way for evil to triumph is for a good man (or woman) to do nothing.” When we sit back and do nothing, or don’t LEAD BY EXAMPLE, we cannot expect people to do differently.

I agree with the author of this blog, although she offers no solutions.  We need alternatives other than judgment, because everyone has bad days (and I understand that these examples provided are much more than just bad days).  We have a serious problem with lack of emotional empathy, bravery and personal responsibility in our society and unfortunately, those who do care enough to try to make a difference are often labeled negatively and told to mind their own business or “live and let live.”  I’m a believer in “do what thou wilt but harm none” but if “live” is causing harm to yourself or others, no one is just required to let you, IMO.

The timing of this piece is excellent as just yesterday I was driving to work behind a car that was going slow and then speeding up, etc.  I tried to go around them and the driver basically cut me off and went even slower.  The driver started glaring at me in the mirror and saying something.  The passenger then proceeded to turn around and start waving at me and giving me the finger.  I just shrugged, smiled and gave her the peace sign.  Then we got to a stop light and the lady on the passenger side got out of the car, came back to my car screaming threats and profanities at me, giving me the finger multiple times, etc.  Again, I just stared at her and felt horribly sorry for this sad woman.  The light turned green, they were holding up traffic, I just honked and waited for her to finish her horrible display of humanity and get back in her car.  As we turned, they sped out of the area very quickly and disappeared into the sad world they live in.  This sort of display and behavior is sad, stupid, ridiculous and COMPLETELY unnecessary.  Did her behavior solve anything or make anything better for anyone?  Absolutely not.

I’d had enough of sitting on the sidelines and letting this sort of shit be tolerated and accepted as “normal” or okay.  I called the non-emergency police number and reported them.  The officer that took my statement said that there was more than enough there to issue citations for disturbing the peace, etc. and make them appear in court but that it was up to me.  I went with just having him make contact with them and issue a warning.  I’d like to hope that given the chance to see that their behavior was horrible and that there are potential consequences, will be enough to hopefully let them take a look at who they are and how they act and improve on that.  The police officer called me back after making contact with them and said that they admitted that what they did was stupid and unnecessary and apologized for flipping out.  So, hopefully this will have some sort of positive impact, if even just in a tiny way.

So, you can call me a bitch or a snitch or a “do gooder” or whatever you want to throw at me for turning these people in.  But I would much rather be someone who is trying to do the right thing and improve my life, as well as those around me, than to be one to does nothing and thereby contributes to the problem.

Life is Short, Drink Good Beer

I’m a beer snob.  I admit it and I’m proud of it.  Why on earth would someone want to pay to drink horrible, watered-down, flavorless beer? Really the only thing that I’ve seen from my years of experience is that people continue to drink cheap SAB (shitty American Beers – i.e. Coors, Miller Lite, Bud, etc.) primarily to get wasted.  I don’t drink beer to get wasted.  I drink good beer to experience the taste, which is why I prefer good beer.  By “good beer” I mean beers where you can taste the different flavors and notes that the brewers have artistically and carefully put together just like a chef perfecting a recipe!  I love local craft beer and some mass produced beer that hasn’t fallen victim to the mindset of just using cheap ingredients and watered down stuff to increase profits.   I thought all beer was like SAB and tasted horrible until just a few years ago.  

There seems to be this huge misconception that good beer costs soooooo much more than SAB and that only those with large amounts of disposable income can enjoy good beer.  In fact, a few days ago I was asked what kinds of beer I like.  I named a few – Empyrean Brewingg Co, Leinenkugel’s, Sam Adams, Zipline, Dundee, Stone, etc., etc.  And the questioner then turned to my fiance and said “You’ve got a good paying job right?”  Wow.  Seriously?  Not only was the comment rude and implied that I’m some sort of high maintenance gal who doesn’t pay for her own damn beer (which is incorrect), but it is also based on the idea that good beer is ridiculously expense (wrong again!).

As with most things in life, you get what you pay for and that goes for beer too!  Now, my fiance and I watch for sales and stock up on good things when they are on sale, but some of the stuff we buy is only $10 for a 12 pack of bottles and that doesn’t seem crazy to me.  Sure some imports and things are going to be pricey, but again, it’s about priorities and the reason behind drinking in the first place that makes a difference in this equation.  I’m willing to admit that my fiance and I take our beer a little more seriously than most (we recently started subscribing to beer magazines and have been experimenting with home brewing), but once you come over to the dark side (the good beer side!), you’ll never go back and you’ll wonder how you managed to drink SAB beyond the age of 22.

The Today Show has a nice section on their website called Beer Geek, which is a term that I love and may now use for myself instead of beer snob.  And for those of you who still think that good beer is too expensive, here is a great article to steer you in the right direct…..Enjoy!!!

Think craft beer is too pricey? Try these budget brews

Link

I applaud this mother!

I was going to just share this article on Facebook, but then I got on my soapbox a bit and decided this might be better……I applaud this mother and this article – An Open Letter to My Son.  She says so many great things!

I’m a firm believer that good parents can teach their teenagers to make better decisions.  Kids and teens will always, until the end of time, do some stupid things.  Their brains aren’t fully developed, so really, there’s no way around it.  Some are better than others when it comes to avoiding horrible decisions, but again, this generally is directly related to how they are raised and how well they can think for themselves.

However, I don’t understand or agree with letting kids under 21 drink at home because “you’d rather they do it at home as opposed to out at a party” and people somehow thinking that helps teach kids to drink responsibly.  How is leading by an example of complete disregard for the legal drinking age teaching anyone respect of any kind?  And how about teaching them to be able to have fun without alcohol or healthier ways to cope with life instead??

Now, I’m a beer-snob and I admit it.  I enjoy good craft beer (not shitty american beer though!), but being responsible with alcohol (and really with pretty much anything!) comes from learning to be a responsible adult.

Alcohol just wasn’t a staple in our household growing up.  That’s not to say that I didn’t drink and make horrible decisions.  Unfortunately, I did.  But I can honestly say, I never had more fun when I was drinking than when I wasn’t.  (If your friends think that you have to be drunk to have fun, or if the only thing you do when you’re with your friends is drink, then you need new friends!)

“Let me be clear that the fact that we love you and will stand by you does not in any way mean we will stand by while you do things that you know aren’t good for you.”  YES!

And she nails this one right on the head – “there is nothing cool about waking up in your own vomit, or having a DUI before you are 18.”  A DUI at any age is the complete opposite of cool….and smart….and responsible.  Plus one thing that worked in my favor is that I hate throwing up, so it only took one time for me to learn that’d there’s a million other things I’d rather do than drink until I throw up.  Plus, there’s nothing cool about a hangover….or being the drunken, crying, stumbling idiot that the rest of the people make fun of.

So here’s a tip of my hat to parents who teach their kids to make better decisions, who lead by a better example and who teach their kids healthier ways to have fun and to cope with the things that life will throw at them for years to come!

A Dreamer – My Introduction

I’ve been called many things in my life…..some positive, others definitely not.  I’ve been called everything from naïve, a dreamer, an idealist to snarky, stuck-up and a bitch for my opinions, beliefs, standards, morals, hopes and thoughts on society, politics and the world.  I may be all of these things.

I’m a believer of science, that which can be researched and proven.  I’m a believer of evolution of the mind and free-thinking.

I’m a child of the 80’s and a child of small-town Nebraska.  I have a love of history and learning about the lives and mistakes of the past to try to learn and grow from them, to move forward and become better, to learn enough to not repeat those travesties from before.  I have an everlasting love of music, art, culture, books, writings, lyrics, etc.  I’ve been told numerous times that I have an “old soul” or that I should have grown up in the 60’s….I take these as compliments.

I have a strong desire to help others.  I do believe that we are all related and connected and that we are, as a society and more, only as strong as our weakest link.  The saying “this should never happen to anyone, and that’s why I care” is pretty accurate in my way of thinking about a lot that goes on in our world today.  I want to believe in humanity, but I am a skeptic.

I am a firm believer in equality.  I want everyone, regardless of race, age, sex, social status, etc., etc., to have the same opportunity for success.  Yet, I’m smart enough to know that even if we are all given the same opportunities, there will always be those who repeatedly make bad decisions, who choose “the easy way”, who decide that putting in some effort and hard work to become a better person, improve their life/situation and contribute to society in a positive way just isn’t worth it and that mediocrity or worse is just fine with them.  I also know that there will always be those who just believe that they are better or deserve more or feel that they are entitled to certain things in live – that the world owes them something.  And these are ways of life and thinking that I will never understand.

I believe deeply in the need for and importance of education, not just in school but in life.  There is nothing better that one can do for themselves and their society but to continue to learn, to grow, to each out new things, better ways, etc. for their entire lives.  This learning starts in infancy and I feel that the worst thing one can do as a parent is to cheat children out of learning, developing and giving them every single too and assistance possible to become the best they can be.  We should never set our children up for failure or hinder them by being lazy parents.

Yes, I have many beliefs and opinions and have only scratched the surface here.  My most defining belief/ideal is that I truly want for us to be better.  I want to be better.  I want our society, country and world to be better.  I want us to treat each other better, learn from one another and our differences.  I stand for a lot of things and I may be just a dreamer…but there’s nothing else I’d rather be.