Friday, November 1, 2019

There's a reason people regularly tell you not to read the youtube comments!!

   I get it.. you're alone on your phone so many hours a day reading and watching mindless shit, that you begin to crave attention; you want to feel less alone after a long purge of this deep spiral.. you want affirmation!! You need community! Likes!? (sad)

For many, that means taking to the cringy comments section for social interaction.

   It's important to remember that he comment section in most online spaces tends to attract a larger percentage of (single/lonely/often bitter/cis-men/socially-isolated) folks statistically, who spread their (often critical, misogynistic, and/or hate-based) opinions and worldview based on that isolation.
   Comment spaces are in no way a reflection of greater societal opinions!! This is critical to understand... (unless your sample gets so large that it truly begins to imitate your population.)

   People who are generally happy with things/films/people/etc.. don't tend to regularly haunt the comment section alone on their computers and critique it; they're more likely to be offline/out living their lives in social situations and learning/interacting instead from their peers.
   Any intro statistics course/book will drill this concept into you endlessly; to get an unbiased statistic (meaning something you want to know about a particular population) you need to use a random sampling method from your chosen population, or sample nearly all of that population anyway.
 My most recent encountered example inspiring this post was from youtube comments (typical!)... particularly from all the people who had (assumedly) watched either the Season 1 trailer on youtube or some amount of the series "Easy" on netflix. (A friend recommended... haven't watched it yet)


  The first ten or twelve comments I encountered were exceptionally critical, and I wondered why that might be; is the show really that awful (it certainly could be!), or is bias sneaking in? (Particularly noting that the show is about love/relationships/sex, etc..) What do all the women think? Happy people think? (I see so few of them represented overtly in the comments section generally)
   We know that netflix removed ratings years ago for at least *some* similar reasons.. namely negativity bias, but also to get increased viewership of course! (Something prime video ever-so-painfully clings to for ethics reasons probably.... I respect it, however flawed and unhelpful)
   ...But long story short.. we rely on youtube comments/ratings now. Interestingly, the general upvote didn't match the first ten comments at all.. it had a whopping 3.2k up-votes/500 down. Why? Maybe satisfied people are good enough with a simple one-click thumbs up?
   In stats you also need to use a large pool of samples to get a good result; the bigger the pool, the more accurate your statistic is. Bias can show up in countless ways; particularly in an online space like this. It seems that sometimes the loudest/angriest few tend to drown out the complacent larger crowd overall. (I think immediately to extremist movements)
     We refer to user-generated comment spaces in statistical terms as "self-selection bias" (certain folks feel more compelled to comment than others) and in concert as "non-response bias" (of course, not everyone who watches the video also comments). As a result, we see themes like negativity bias arise; (ie: those that hated the show the most feel most strongly; and are more likely to comment!) :)
   We gotta give Netflix at least some credit.. but youtube algorithms could use some major work too!! Until we find a better way of polling/sorting commentary online, never feel bad if you want to just skip the damn comments altogether; they're a great research tool, but so often weaponized!

...butt-hurt is real... but so is a broken system, combative partisan politics and income inequality. If you ask me, we need more love, respect and understanding in online spaces. <3 p="">   

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

On "stupidity"...

It can be said that we're, above all else, an incredibly social species. We're hard-wired to want to hear "gossip" and watch other people discuss things, and talk about others the vast majority of the time; and it turns out we do! Well over 60% of everything we say to each other during the day is simply about other people.

In fact, our ability to communicate our wants and needs through advanced language and symbolism (interpersonal communication via culture) is literally what helped make our brains so big! You don't have to like it, but perhaps have some respect for our species keen ability to navigate and obsess over socialization!

The 'Kardashians' phenomena is an ideal example here...

An online chum and I were discussing the idea of idiocy today...  a politicized word I find myself using less and less as an adult.. and then flat-earthers jolted into the conversation!! .. (a concept I'd historically feel quite content combining into the same sentence as "idiocy")... but wait.. what IS idiocy? A general lack of knowledge? A lack of acceptance? A smaller brain? An inability to trust institutions? A person with low IQ? (our IQ tests discriminate based on race, FYI)
Is liking/watching the Kardashians an idiotic thing? Why?

Do any nerds here remember that episode of Star Trek where the concept of "small talk" was laughably labeled as silly and unnecessary by data and others?
...that episode made me a little uncomfy. What's wrong with bonding with others through small chat? What constitutes everything else?

Are we (in our ever-persistent pursuit of progress) a social species consciously trying to break away from our "chains of social-ness?"

(Lordy help us Seattelights!! :P ..we already ignore all live humans in public)

What about oppressed groups who rely solely on group solidarity and social function to unite uprisings? What about those without community? What about all the people that (willingly or not) use small-talk to get their needs met? I had a lot of questions after that episode... but the idea of oppression always changes my perspective on things... "idiocy" and "stupidity" being prime examples.

Understanding oppression is critical here... (yeah.. you knew it was fucking coming)

Imagine you're living in poverty and you're working 3 jobs. You're chronically stressed from your wage-labor life.. both physically and mentally. You often feel discriminated against by those you're supposed to trust (i.e. your doctors/lawyers/the police/etc) and you have to work weekends with little to no vacation time. You have a hard time paying for general bills, rent, and healthcare. Life is tough, and it's fucking stressful. You have to make sacrifices.. a lot.

I'd argue that if you're truly stressed, you don't generally go home at the end of the week (with what little time off you have) and watch something serious like sci-fi or documentaries or something of any real seriousness or complexity.. instead, as a wage slave, you probably tend to watch things that represent capitalist fetishism, things that represent what you don't have and things which help numb you;

#1; rich people. doing rich things.. (as we're living in a capitalist universe, getting small glimpses of what it's like to be a person who's "made it" is our ideal.. people who aren't attached to the chronic stress of poverty and who can afford luxuries like time, health, and recreation, and those who focus instead on leisure activities)

#2; frivolous social matters... [watching others stress out instead of yourself; and watching self-induced affluent 'stress' (vacationing/beauty/social elitism/party planning) instead of real stress like bills, child support, medical needs, etc.. being able to turn off real life, and imagining these beautiful celebrities instead are your family/friends/etc]...

One can imagine that the more 'mindless' the TV shows available in a place, the more poverty, discrimination and wage disparity you see overall .. and it turns out this is an actual correlation too.
Oh..and the wage/medical/work/housing/interpersonal discrimination crap.. is very, very real...
we see the disturbing numbers from studies again and again..

- Black mothers are more likely to die in childbirth in this country than white mothers... black women also suffer much more chronic stress than white women, as well as medical discrimination in terms of pain management..

- communities of color don't live as long as white communities overall..

- indigenous populations have higher disease rates like diabetes due to lack of medical care and power/water/food distribution infrastructure...

- children of color have higher asthma rates than whites (due to historic redlining of neighborhoods predominantly into inner cities/spaces near road traffic/pollution/etc)

the list goes on and on...

Fact is, life is considerably harder to navigate for people who don't own property, who don't have lots of money, who lack anglo-saxon sounding names and who don't look typically white in the US.
These are also people with high stress rates, that often choose to watch silly rich people on TV as a form of escapism from poverty and daily discrimination.

In essence, the 'Kardashians' show is literally what a stressed-out, unequal, and often impoverished nation craves.. the socialization aspect we crave as humans..
and a show about rich people who socialize about frivolous rich people things, instead of the struggles of ordinary daily life in a capitalist wage-labor country built of the backs of oppression. TV shows don't account for idiocy in this way; they point to a deeper oppression we simply wish to turn-off for an hour or so every few days. That's hardly idiotic.. that's therapeutic.

Thursday, March 21, 2019

On Solidarity

Many white settlers here in North America like to feel better about themselves when they think they're taking the moral high ground based on others actions...

I'm better than ________.
At least I'm not a ______.
You name it .. a racist, a manipulative person, a sexist, a con-artist, a rapist, an abuser, a murderer, a thief, a gunman, a mysogynist, a nazi, a bigot, a pedophile, a smuggler, a killer...
..a *gulp*... trump supporter?!
...the list goes on and on...
And sure.. some ppl are trash.. hell, lots of ppl are trash!

But are you really better?
So maybe you never shot up a school, or raped babies, or blew up a bunch of nuns, or whatever the fuck else..
..but are you really going to call yourself a good/moral/wise person based on what you DON'T do?!
All kinds of awful people of ALL kinds exist.. but if you're a white colonizer living on stolen indigenous land you're sure as shit still one of them.
Get off your high horse and think of yourself as one of the bad people already.
Then go do something about it.

It's easier to think of other bad behaviors and people (like racists) as a lost cause.. those "other" awful people you simply can't stand to look at or talk to..

Yeah, well indigenous folks and POC don't like fucking dealing with opressors either. They're just forced to endure us every damn second of every damn day against their will. That's forced upon their lives.

I try to do good. I know that consistently open/non-judgemental dialog can and does change the minds and hearts of bad ppl over time. I know because I changed.

I grew up surrounded by abuse.
I was taught to abuse.
As a youngster, I abused.
I also choose not to abuse now.
I unlearned that shit.
(Thnks, feminism/therapy/friends/allies..)

People aren't born monsters.
Racism isn't biologically innate in certain humans.. it's learned.

I also know I'm not going to change minds by preaching to the choir either.

It's always seemed unfair (for me as a priviledged/rich/whiteIDd person) to not actively use my many privileges to try to dismantle systemic and internalized racism every chance I possibly get.

So I choose to talk to racists...
Because I am part of the problem.
...and I owe it to others to be part of the solution.

I don't like dialog with bigots anymore than anyone else.. but my education was never about me or for me. It was never about making things easier for me.

(the world doesn't revolve around me) education was in solidarity alongside those allowing me to be an ally.

I went to school on Duwamish land.. not for myself, but for all those who can't.

Why not strike up a conversation with a shitty person today?

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Choosing pregnancy specifically and purposefully to abort

aka; a premeditated baby-grinder is me...
Why does EVERY fucking person who writes for the “shout my abortion” campaign
feel they need to lay down a long-winded excuse or description of circumstances
leading up to their natural bodily processes needing medical intervention? Stop. No.
   The parasitic cell division that occurs in ½ of the human population as a means of
continued existence is a naturally occurring biological process..  something human
bodies are designed solely to do as a function of our simply existing in the first place..
no different than our innate desire to eat or shit or cough or breathe.
   Cell division is a necessary function of human bodies.. get over it. You owe zero
excuses for your body functions. NO ONE should be stigmatizing pregnancy anymore
than they might cancer or cleft palates… you know; those natural bodily processes
people routinely DON’T provide any fucking excuses for... because we shouldn't have to.
   I had my 'abortion' 110% purposefully premeditated. I did it for me and ONLY me
because I can do whatever the flying fuck I want to my body.
I wanted to experience what the whole "preggers" thing felt like for a wk or so, mostly
for sexual reasons (because you only live once, right?).. and maybe (it was a long shot
maybe) get some bonus bigger/darker nips or areolas out of the fun. (sadly it was cut off
much too soon to do much on that note, but it did end up being a hell of a preggo/breeding
fetish fantasy come true for this kinky slutbag!) Naturally the ultimate turn-on for any cunt
in heat, ever, duh... (thanks evolution)
   I just didn't want to experience it for very long, because pregnancy can be quite
dangerous and the idea of growing crotch parasites.. yuck; yeah, no.. hard limit
on stomach growthy things. I stick to adopted fur-babes/ready born chittlins, thanx.
  I’m privileged enough to be an anti-natalist.. and fully given the choice to decide,
there's no ethical excuse I can personally come up with to birth a life. It would be cruel
and unnecessary in my eyes; especially on an already overpopulated planet currently
unable to sustain its current inhabitants even remotely ethically. But the idea of
pregnancy is fucking HOT.
   I wanted to avoid any vacuum evacuation/curettage, so I decided to schedule my
“medical” abortion as early as I possibly could; which ended up being pretty much
the same time cells started dividing in my uterus. (ugh..shudder.. I just couldn't wait
more than a few days... it's just too fucking creepy knowing something is growing in
   I routinely use those cheapy (yet reliable!) dollar-store hCG tests every month
(or anytime I have a late period) just for general peace of mind.. so i caught my tiny
little growth within 1-2 weeks of it attaching to me. It ended up taking my fat PCOS
ridden ass roughly 14 months of (ovulating) vaginal sex with the resident boislut
for my anxious horniness to pay off too! I really prefer anal with intact cocks both for
feel/subbyness and pregger protection.. but I just had to get this out of my system..
(pun.. ohh............)
   My plan was to force a "thick period" via mifepristone/misoprostol so I could get a
day of heavy cramps comfortably at home, gather my little cell blobby in a jar, take
some family photos, and delight in personally “murdering” it; (as much as you can
murder a centimeter-size cluster of dividing cells anyway) ...I just really wanted to be
able to say I committed SOME form of baby murder... muhahahahah! (not many
chances in life u know)
   I also just wanted to see what the whole mysteriously medicalized guilted/shamed
patriarchal bullshit process of navigating an 'abortion' in this state and country was
really like, because I’m an Anthro/Comparative History major and I delight in
investigating gendered cultural narratives like this one.. particularly one so insanely
  Let me also note that I'm a privileged white 34 year old college-educated ape from
Seattle who has pretty excellent (and free) access to healthcare through medicaid
while studying at UW, so I was/am privileged as shit to be able to do this so casually
and live/type to talk about it as such, while so many in the world still can't.
   I learned a lot.. that the docs on UW campus have to refer students out to a
specialty clinic bc they don’t carry/perform “medical” abortions on campus interestingly;
that a day of excessively heavy cramping is kinda fun as a once-off feeling of
supposed “motherhood” if you’re never having kiddos otherwise but want to feel like
you still kinda got a little of the physical  experience; and that the whole process
(testing, referral, pill-popping and follow-up) was absolutely riddled with political,
gendered, and lawful whiny medicalized bullshit (unsurprisingly) even in liberal as fuck
Seattle.. (boy, we love policing womens bodies!)
   I went into this adventure with a fair amount of medical knowledge; so I knew what
to expect; but nothing prepares you for other women expecting you to be this sad,
ashamed, afraid, alone, demolished creature.. acting as this helpless victim unsure
of your options and how your body works… that was mind-opening to experience
  I’ve always felt very in control of my healthcare (having participated in numerous
clinical studies on and off campus throughout the years; in random sampling and
multiple medication phase trials, etc.) This experience definitely stood out as unique
to me.
   The MDs, ARNPs and nurses on my medical team (all women) at the referral
clinic (“Cedar River” in the downtown Seattle medical/dental building), all shared
this invisibilize bond.. a sense of shared strength and struggle.. both in my first visit
(mifepristone necessarily taken in the presence of an aid visually in office) and
during the follow-up ultrasound (2 weeks after my misoprostol dosing at home).
  The rooms there were thick with a sense of collective triumph; I remember that
solidarity well. What started as a curious decision to experience this procedure
myself, ended as a unique way of seeing women's struggle; as 2 of the women
waiting next to me looked like they didn’t have homes; and there perhaps as necessity.

   I have similar women throughout civil rights history to thank for paving my path to
equal quality healthcare options like this; notably those that never apologized and
never felt even slightly at fault for taking responsibility for their bodies, their future,
and their autonomy.. AND, lets not forget, their sexuality!! because I don't regret
a damn second of this experience/experiement; my learning to use my
reproductive organs for my own satisfaction! ;)

Wanna see it? of course you fucking do... Look, Ma.. i grew a thingie!!

(for reference, this glass kitchen bowl is about 4x4 inches.. i kept it high-res and suspended
it in water so you can see the cool detail... creepy! hu?!)
I was really tempted to fry it up and eat it, or put it in formaldehyde as a keepsake,
but I ended up just pouring it down the garbage disposal/turning it on whilst doing and
laughing maniacally...because it seemed mildly entertaining at the time.

Thursday, November 8, 2018

I Intentionally DON'T lock bathroom stalls or single-occupancy bathroom doors.. because I shouldn't have to.

Why? ....why the hell not??

A few reasons...

- I'm a fat person and stalls are fucking tiny annoying stinky cramped spaces
- I like having an "out" in case of unforeseeable emergency (earthquake, shooter, etc)
- I'm not a fan of doors...or walls... or enclosed spaces in general...
- I don't have an inherent fear of others seeing or judging my body
- Door/stall handles are the dirtiest thing in the bathroom (they aren't cleaned routinely like toilets)
- No one ever tries to enter my space (wiggles handle/knocks) when I'm seen
- It opens up space for chit chat (vulnerability breeds connection)
- If I run out of toilet paper, someone can actually hand me some
- I like to look my friends/family/etc in the eye when I'm talking, not yell over a door
- More often than not, stalls/bathroom locks are dysfunctional in busy restrooms anyways
- The idea of locking myself into a tiny corner with strangers around seems creepy
- I grew up using stalls in parks that never had doors on them
- Urinals don't have stalls in-between them... why the fuck do toilets?
- Most restrooms around the world don't have doors... and people manage just fine.
- Ventilation, ventilation, ventilation!! I don't want the stink to linger..
- Every animal on earth outside homo-sapiens doesn't give 2 shits (I mean, they do.. but..)

     I rarely encounter other folks not locking doors, and I find it odd.. outside disabled folks and little kids (the tiny innocent folks who haven't internalized societal body shaming yet) it's as if women are ashamed of their piss and their genitals. I can't say I'm surprised.. :/
     We don't all lock ourselves into little metal boxes when we put things inside our body.. (aka eating) we actually do quite the opposite and make it a social function... we tend to WANT to eat together. Why can't bathrooms be used as the valuable social spaces they are? (After all, we do ALL share the same regular need to go.. it's not as if anyone DOESN'T take dumps) ...In restaurants we all hold ourselves accountable for cleanliness because it's a shared space.. and that's rarely the case with restrooms... secrecy breeds some disgusting habits.. not flushing, not picking up what you drop, not using the plunger when you plug one up (ew) etc.. bathrooms are weird fucking spaces.. they remind me of the depths of 4chan, reddit and youtube comments where people go just to make trouble.
    There's even bathroom-messing fetishists... it's a thing! (I've seen it) wherein folks go into the secrecy of a stall, intentionally plug up a toilet with giant wads of toilet paper, then flush and run... just for the funsies of it... like a hobbie. (It's usually older retired women earlier in the mornings in larger department-type stores where they can't be easily caught.. they're surprisingly common!) It turns out that humans turn into irresponsible pieces of shit (pun intended) when left to privacy. Such.... bizarre.. spaces!! (Not surprisingly, I'm also a seasonal/recreational/social nudist.
     As always, the issue is gendered... it's completely acceptable for men to stand next to one-another and excrete bodily fluids as a group.. while the "filthy/nasty.. in need of protection because of our inherent feebleness-women" are expected to shut themselves away in a stinky dark un-ventilated germ box. No..fucking.. thanks.
I'll be keeping my door wiiide open, thank you! :)

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Dose = Poison!

Repeat after me:

Dose = Poison
Dose = Poison
Dose = Poison

   Everything is a chemical and can be dangerous in high enough doses or if consumed improperly. Take H2O (water); it will kill you if you breathe enough of it in (drowning, duh) and it will kill you if you consume too much in a short span of time (aka water intoxication; disturbs electrolyte balance leading to rapid drop in serum sodium concentration.. causing seizures, permanent brain damage, coma and/or death) Keep in mind H2O is also primarily what we're made of.
   Always remember, *Dose = poison*. H2O isn't inherently toxic to humans; it just is in large doses. This applies to EVERYTHING.. [i.e. sunlight (radiation) or salt - both deadly to humans if we're exposed to too little/too much] and EVERY food; take caffeine or vinegar (coffee/salad dressing)... both carcinogenic, but damn tasty and GRAS (generally recognized as safe!)

Dose = Poison. Preach it.

Why does this matter? Because the term "toxic chemical" is relative. There are a few notable exceptions to the rule of course... but enough with the alarmist ideas in the food realm... come at me with a dose that's toxic and I'll listen to you like you know what the fuck you're talking about.

Monday, September 24, 2018

What turns our crank and why? I try to break it down...

    From what I've gathered in readings and research as an undergrad over the years in anthropology and cultural studies (history), (as well as my own sexual sluttery with over 200 people in my day) there are three drivers I've found routinely popping up in "gratifying" human sexual experience that happen OUTSIDE PHYSICAL FEELING.
    These three I've come to know are understood psychologically and sociologically (or those we can test or poll regularly and then record) and seem to constantly be in play with each other in various (known famously) conceptualizations... ie Freudian, Maslow's hierarchies.. blah blah blah.. (mostly white institutionalized western thought which I tend to avoid using as meaningful or scientific)
   The formation of these overlapping desires I've gathered are based on my accounts of human need relating back to sexual desire and fulfillment. They're variable, but always present in some form.
These are the 3 drivers in non-physical desire I've come up with (and hope to elaborate much more about in time as a senior):

1. Novelty - (whatever/whoever's newest or weirdest or foreign/unique gets us most excited)
2. Fantasy(sexualized ideas/feelings we've built or associated in mind; coming to fruition)
3. Group Identity and group dynamism - (what identities we sexualize and/or how our groupings interact w other groupings; ie.. gender identity, concepts of family, sex as social tool)

    I find we can usually figure out what excites us all (and why) when we account for these three overlapping variables... at least as far as I've found in my own research... why? ...we're a group animal with group animal needs :) Our sexual perceptions and need to procreate are always based on others and the way we perceive others when we're talking about anything outside physiology.