Values, Labels, and Authority, Oh My!

Lately there has been some talk about being "THAT mom", about values, and about 'letting' your kids do things. A lot of people have had something to say about it, and it would talk too long to go over everything, but in general the discussion has focused on whether parents should allow their kids to do things the parent disapproves of, on whether the parent should help the kid do things they would not choose for them. I think the point that needs to get across to those naysayers in the unschooling community and beyond is that you don't really have a choice. Your children will do whatever it is they want to do, and there is absolutely nothing - and I mean NOTHING - that you can do to stop them if that is what they really want. But it should also be taken into consideration that happy children - and teens - very rarely do anything that is harmful to themselves or others. I'm not saying "Of course your kid isn't going to do anything harmful!" because many people do. But if your kid is happy, content, provided for, and treated with respect, they are unlikely to have any desire whatsoever to be that person.


Another point that needs must be presented is that just because your kid isn't engaging in any activities that are harmful to themselves or others, doesn't mean they aren't going to make you uncomfortable. Most kids grow up with values that are different from their parents in some way. They want different things for themselves. They believe different things. If you strongly believe that, for example, it is very important to improve your mind, there are a lot of people who would back you up and call this a good value to hold. I would even say that yes, improving your mind is always a good thing.

But what if your child doesn't agree? What if your child prefers physical activity to mental, or creative activity? What then? Do you force your child to learn about atoms and quadratic equation, or do you sign them up for a soccer team or buy them some modeling clay? The people who have been participating in this blog carnival, the people who are "That mom" or "That dad" or "That sister", are the kind who would rather see their children happy and doing what they love then see them doing what makes them, the mother or father or sister, happy, doing what THEY love. People who put down their own values for their children's, people who put down lesser wants for wanting their children to be truly happy.

I'm sure this doesn't address all the concerns people have voiced, or not voiced, but still. The main points are there. You can't stop your children doing what they want...and why would you want to?


Religion - Today's Topic of Contemplation

So, lately I've been thinking about religion and god(s) and why people need these things. Of course, it is generally acknowledged that a lot of people are religious for comfort reasons. I do understand that. I understand the comfort you could get from going "Hey, it's not MY fault things didn't turn out alright. It was the Lord/Allah/Zeus/Whoever." or "I can't do anything to solve this really terrible problem, but I'll pray, and God/Allah/Zeus/Whoever will fix it for me." I really do get where you're coming from, religious types. But I always just think the comfort bit is outweighed by the fear bit. Religion, even positive happy religions, are all about the fear. "Will I get into Heaven/Valhalla/Whatever?" is a big one. "If God/Allah/Zeus/Whoever lets bad things happen to THOSE good people, will he let bad things happen to me?" is another. And then there's the other fear. "What if I'm wrong?" Everyone is a Doubting Thomas sometimes during the religious life. Everyone questions the existence of God/Allah/Zeus/Whoever and Heaven/Valhalla/Whatever. They wonder if a different religion or form of thought is correct and they chose wrong. In other words, they are filled with fear.

I believe that I wasn't raised to be an atheist, but I was raised to be logical and scientific, and until someone shows me a big magical man/woman/creature who created the world and controls the fates of insignificant mortals, I simply won't believe he/she/it exists. I know a lot of people are agnostic, and there's no shame in that. That's actually a pretty scientific "I don't know." mentality there. But me, I believe men/women/creatures are innocent of creating the universe until someone can prove them guilty. I think we're just here, and we'll just go and that's all there is. No point, no purpose, just the random inevitably of all things.

That being said, I've been thinking about this, and found that my own brain defeats the idea that people believe in God/Allah/Zeus/Whatever because they find it comforting. We can't say all people take comfort in believing this is true, because, as I am discovering, I don't. The idea that there is something after death is unpleasant to me. The knowledge that when I am dead, I will simply be gone and that will be it is VERY comforting to me. It seems peaceful. I have always loved sleeping - it takes you away from your problems, takes you out of the world and nestles you safely in the comfort of your own mind. It seems to me death is just a sleep with no morning. Just peace. The lack of things to worry about. I have always said that the best thing about death is that you don't have to live with it - to me, this is very true. In a particularly good episode of the TV show "House", Dr. House voices the opinion that he prefers to believe this is all there is, because he would rather not think that this is just a test. This is another thing I believe and find comfort in.

Now, I'm not saying everybody should go out and kill themselves - I am a human being, and as such, have a distinct attachment to life. But it seems to me if I have to leave this world, I'd rather not just leave it for another one. Enjoyable as life can be, it can also be hard. Ever heard the phrase "This too shall pass"? I like that saying. There are good things and bad things about being alive, and if you have to give up the good things, wouldn't it be nicer to not have to do the bad things anymore, either?

Of course, if you believe in Heaven/Valhalla/Whatever, you believe that all there is after death is an eternity of happiness, but I don't think that is possible. Humans get bored easily. Eternity would just make us miserable. Isn't it more comforting to think that after we have lived our (preferably long) lives, we get to just go to sleep? Like coming home after a long, hard, day, all you want is to lie down and not have to work anymore. Yes, people should lead good lives, and long ones. I'm not suggesting that death is preferable to life. What I AM suggesting is that death is preferable to...forever. Think about the things about life that suck. The things that would still suck, even in Heaven/Valhalla/Whatever. Annoying people. Boredom. Your own insecurities. Stress. And Or afterliving. The every day wear and tear of Doing Things.

Wouldn't it be nice, at the end of everyThing you wanted to Do, to just...Stop?


And on the first day...

Chloe woke up very late that day and was then transported by Lynelle to Qacei's house. Qacei and Mary were all "Oh, it is Chloe, hi" and then Chloe and Qacei hung out. Shortly thereafter, Chloe and Qacei took it upon themselves to make a video. It was a very amazing video. This very amazing video that Chloe and Qacei had taken it upon themselves to make was TTLZVCBFOS3. the only issue here was that they didn't actually have the SCRIPT for TTLZVCBFOS3. But they had a little piece of the script, so they made that. This might sound simple, but in reality, it was very complicated. Who would play which parts? Where would they film? Did they have adequate props and costumes? Eventually, though, after many difficulties, many hours, and about ten thousand outtakes, the video came together, and they had filmed all the shots. Then they retired to the computer room and uploaded the shots onto Qacei's computer. They had like 59 shots, though, so they had to delete some of them and mesh some of them together and basically edit the whole three thousand pounds of film they would have used had their video not been digital.

Anyway, they did this, and it took them quite some time, but they managed it, and when they were done it was totally awesome and they put it on the internet for Zephyr to see and laugh at.

The End.

P.S. Don't tell Zephyr about this, cause he don't know yet.


Stupid Homophobic News Reporters

I was recently surfing the web when I came across a news article detailing the death of a thirteen year old boy named Jesse Dirkhising. He was raped and murdered by a gay couple who were family friends. His death was a horrible tragedy, and my heart goes out to his family, of course. However, things like this, tragic as they are, happen frequently, and if I mentioned every single one of them on my blog it would explode, and then my head would.

So why am I mentioning this one?

Well, it seems fair and unbiased reporting no longer exists in this country. It seems no one can just write a news story and report the facts. It always has to be a political statement, always has to be about pushing your views on people. And the stupid bastard who covered the story on the website I happened to discover it on has views that are, quite simply, WRONG.

As I read the article, I began to get the impression that the author had something against homosexuals. However, I decided that this was only because I have many homosexual friends and relatives, and am sensitive to the issue. But the feeling only got stronger as I read on, and by the time I finished the article, I had serious doubts about this man's opinions on homosexuality. But I was interested in seeing if I could find out more, about the case and the man in question, so I clicked a link located at the bottom of the page. The article I found was a discussion, of sorts, of the Washington Post's rebuttal of certain accusations hurled at them during the course of the article. In this 'discussion', the author of both the original article and the 'discussion' made several comments that were not only blatantly homophobic, but also really, really, annoying.

So what did I do? I decided to blog about it. I know I don't blog very often, but occasionally I get really annoyed with people, you know? So. Basically, this man indicated in both articles that homosexuals are somehow more likely to be pedophiles and rapists than heterosexuals. He also expressed religious viewpoints, something I believe a good reporter never does. Not everyone who reads your articles believes in your god, asshole. Two comments in the 'discussion', and one in the original article, got to me particularly, and I'd like to share those with you, so you can be mad at him too.

In the original article, he comments that one of the men 'manipulated [the other man] into a homosexual relationship by stating that four characters from the Bible (David and Jonathan and Ruth and Naomi) were homosexual'.

Like people have to be convinced to be gay! Like it's some kind of choice! He makes other comments like that, too, that it's a choice, some kind of fetish. This kind of talk disgusts me.

And the 'discussion'...

For starters, he says 'I...never considered myself "hostile to homosexuals." Not approving of sin does not necessarily make one hostile to sinners.'

WhoaWhoaWhoa Back Up. Sin? Not only are you making homosexuals out to be bad, you're also expressing religious viewpoints, as previously mentioned. BASTARD.

Secondly, and I think worst of all the things he says, he says 'Keep in mind that Jesse's guardians saw nothing wrong with a 13-year-old boy spending weekends with a homosexual couple. That's crazy.'



Like that's automatically a horrible thing to do? Like they're bad parents for letting their kid be around homosexuals? He also quotes, in the original article, something Jesse's grandmother, Betty Yates, said. She said 'The parents put him in a situation he should not have been in. They knowingly let him spend weekends with the two guys, knowing they were gay. Jesse was a typical 13-year-old good kid. You do not put a 13-year-old child into a situation like that.'

Clearly, that author agrees with her. It just makes me furious that these people assume the fact that these men were violent and twisted had something to do with the fact that they were also gay. Obviously, this was a horrible crime, and of course this boy should not have been hanging out with THESE PARTICULAR men. Does this mean we should start avoiding homosexuals? Of course not! The majority of them are no more likely to harm another human being than you are. And any logical, sane, clear-thinking person would know that.

Best Wishes to anyone not this reporter guy,


Isn't that bizzare? Aren't you just going...'Ooh'?

I'm actually posting something. Shocking, huh?

Basically, I have nothing good to say, and therefore never say anything. But I figured everyone who reads this is hating me for not posting anything and making their lives more difficult without reward, so I thought a post was in order. I've been keeping a journal, which is probably a contributing factor in the lack of blog posts. Everything I'd say here, I already said there.

What have I been doing lately, you ask? Well, I dogsat (which mostly consisted of watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel for three days straight), I came home and watched more Buffy, I helped mom clean my room for me (hehe ^ ^) and then I watched some more Buffy. Actually, I strapped mom to the futon and forced her to watch the first two episodes with me. Aren't I just too evil?

Anyway, following that, I sat in my own bed (wow, right?) with my own TV on a stool at the foot of my bed and watched Pump Up the Volume, that Christian Slater movie about the illegal radio guy. It was pretty good, but the ending was unsatisfying.

Anyway again, we're gonna clean some more today, only mom has to watch football first. It's very important. Life or death football. Cause...Um...God is playing. In the football game. Against Joe the Used Car Salesman from Alabama.

He's a very dangerous man, you know. Bent on total destruction.

Moving on, I have stuff to do now (including but not limited to sorting old toys into different categories. It's important.) so I'm gonna go. I hope you all hate me less after this, and I also hope it will last a while, cause I somehow can't imagine myself writing another post any time really soon.

Hey, maybe I'll put up those blog posts I wrote in Italy sometime soon. They'd be way late, but still, you know? Okay, so I'm actually going now. Good luck in all your New Year's endeavours. Bye!~


Book Five: The Final Something Or Other

So, this is late.


On her last day, Cole went in to Sunnyside Down to barista again, and spent large quantities of time working the register. That was traumatizing, and made her emotionally fragile. But she got to make Marie her special drink, which was fun. Then Cole's father figure and sister arrived, and there was joyfulness and she made them buy things for her so she could ring them up, which was also fun. So, she had her some drinks and foods, and then they left, taking Buffy Season Seven home with them, NOT Buffy Season One, which was good, because Season One was not theirs. So they drove, and they drove, and Cole and her sister talked about things, and Cole told her sister a story in lolspeak, and it was good. Then they were home, and there was homeness, and Cole was frazzled, but she talked with her parental figures and sister and they ate some of the cupcakes Cole and Qayte made in Book Two: The Mysterious Baked Goods which Cole had brought with her from Magic Land, and she slept.

And it was good, because Cole finally did some writing on her NaNovel, and she thought she might actually be able to finsih it by the deadline.

Which would be good.



Book Four: Everything and Announcements

SO! I woke up at the prescribed time this morning, a first...well, at most a Chloe history! Be proud of me, gorammit!

Anyway...moving on!

Cole woke up at the prescribed time this morning and got ready speedily. Then she and Qayte and Qayte's mother Marie all went in to Sunnyside Down, and Cole did her some baristaing, including, much to her pleasure, terror, and humiliation for no reason, some ringing up of people. Real live customers. There was also serving, and taking orders, and making drinks, and calling drinks out, et cetera et cetera. She enjoyed herself greatly, and took her usual wages for the day. She and Qayte dropped off her books at the library during their break, because she had decided to go home soon, and they needed to be returned. So anyway, she worked, and played, and had her some chai. Then it was time for the going home club. Aaaaand, they went home. She finished her green scarf, which is lovely, by the way (or would be, if it was real, which it's not, because this is a work of fiction). Also, Qayte had some bits of mossy fuzzy yarn left over from her new cat hat she is making for barista Melissa, and Cole made those into a choker and a bracelt. The choker is braided and the bracelet is crocheted, but you can't tell the difference, so it doesn't matter. Cole and Qayte went to the park again, and wandered around, and they found out that school is out today for some innocuous reason. They discovered that if you sing one of the camp songs twice it fits their moon dance fairly well. Cole danced with her umbrella. Then there was a crocheting/knitting/braiding/Buffywatching party at Qayte's, with just her and Cole, and that is when Cole finsihed the scarf. They also watched some Gilmore Girls. Then there was some getting on of the computer, and Cole discovered that there is a picture of Kell I where she looks like the mom in Gilmore Girls, which is nifty swifty, which is Cole's phrase of the day/week/indefinite time period.

Anyway, I has to go now, regardless of the shortish post, because I has nothing more to say on the matter. But first, two announcements. One is for the sake of anyone who didn't know and wanted to, and the other is mostly for the sake of my parental units.

ONE: My male parental unit is going to pick me up from Sunnyside Up tomorrow, and return me to the bosom of my family. Yes. Perhaps, perhaps, just maybe, I might actually get some writing done.

TWO: We are going to visit Abbi and Kell I and Alec and Kyra and Tim. There is no other option. It's my way, or...well....your way. But this should be your way. Cause it would make me happy.


Book Three: Bulfinch, Buffy, and....Bulius.

Today's novella. It's totally a novella. Deal with it.

After Cole had checked her messages on the computer and stuff like that, she and Qayte decided to mall. So they were driven there, and they alighted and entered the building, though sadly, Cole was forced to leave her book in the car, because it's hard to read Bulfinch while walking through a building full of overpriced stores and mindless sheeple. So Cole and Qayte went into a bunch of stores, looked at clothing, felt all the soft things they could find, and grabbed Juliuses from the Food Area, which Cole did not consider to be a court. In fact, she never considers them to be courts, because they are areas. Areas full of chairs. And tables.
Anyway, so after they had done everything the could possibly do and hadn't seen any cute boys at all, Qayte called her parents and they went to wait outside of Old Navy.
They waited for like half an hour, went back inside, waited a little more, and then Qayte's father arrived, and they went back outside Old Navy and he picked them up and brought them back to Qayte's place. In the car, Cole got to finish the story she was reading in Bulfinch, which was Tristram and Isoude, which she loves, even though it makes her sad. Anyway, so they got home, and they had them some food, and some talking, and then they watched BUFFY! which was totally awesome, of course. Also, laundry was done, which was yay for them, because they were running low on wearable pants. While Buffy was being watched, Cole worked on her scarf making project, which was progressing nicely and had reached eleven rows (barely) when they finished watching Buffy and retreated to the computers. So Cole wrote on her blog - which was nothing like this one - and did some Myspacing and decided to read some more Bulfinch later.

The End of Book Three.

You should anxiously await Book Four, which will probably consist of baristaing and park-going.

Book Two: The Mysterious Baked Goods

Father, it has been three? days since my last confession. True, I promised last time that the next book would be out tomorrow, but as with all writers, I am behind on my deadline once more. So here's the second book, a couple days late.

Let's see...

The day after Cole and Qayte went to the library, they travelled to the local park, which was a magical land of wonder and joyness. And swings. Which they swung on. And a couple of really curse-filled thirteen year olds. Then they walked around, and talked about random stuff, and they whiled the day far far away. The day following that they decided productivity was the key, and so after another quick trip the park and a drive into Sunnyside Up for supplies, they proceeded to bake. The mixed them up some chocolate batter, and although Cole tried (and succeeded) to eat some of it that was left in the bowl, Qayte tried (and succeeded) to keep it away from her. Then they evened out the batter in its containers, so they were all the same height, which was harder than it sounds. They stuck it in the preheated oven then, and mixed them up some frosting. There was some trouble with a 'double boiler' and an argument over sour cream, which was added to the frosting according to the recipe, against Cole's better judgment, because sour cream is the devil. Then the frosting was carefully mixed, and tasted to make sure it wasn't poisonous. The baked goods were cooling, the frosting was ready, and Cole and Qayte got out their secret weapon. As soon as the baked goods were totally cooled (though Cole protested that they could be frosted before that point, Qayte would not LISTEN TO REASON) Cole and Qayte each frosted six of them, leaving about eight tons of frosting left over. A cake was suggested, to deal with the excess frosting. Then, frosted baked goods in hand - or rather, on counter - Qayte broke off a couple of pieces of white chocolate from the Ghiradelli bar they had purchased earlier, and she shaved the into curly strips with a cheese grater. Then they sprinkled white chocolate on the cupcakes, took some phototographs, and showed them off to those members of Qayte's family who were not in their rooms. Then they each ate one. They were freaking delicious.

Not that I would know.

Then they moved on, placing the baked goods in a plastic box in the fridge. They decided some fortune telling was in order, and, retrieving some paper, they made cootie catchers. They asked them lots of questions, and one of Qayte's could see the future. Once the dog had attempted to eat Qayte psychic fortune teller and they had grown bored trying to think of new questions, they decided to play a game of M.A.S.H. They wrote down their categories - where they'd live, what kind of house they'd have, how many kids they'd have, how much their salary would be, what their job would be, their car, and where they'd have their honeymoon (and of course, who their husband would be) - Cole chose two options for each category, and Qayte chose two. They were playing to see Cole's future, you see, so Cole chose one's she wanted, and Qayte chose one's Cole really didn't want particularly, thanks. Then they played, leaving Cole with a good mix of good things (husband, type of house, um..something) and bad things. Then they played for Qayte, which was hilarious. Really hilarious. But anyway, they had to get on AIM right that instant and inform Qayte's future husband of their discovery, which they did. Unfortunately, the future husband was idle, so they talked a new name...Anna? Alice? could just use her name, I suppose...Abbi, instead, and they asked her if she wanted to play M.A.S.H. Once a little wikipedia had explained to her what it was, they had her choose her options, and they selected another option, one each. Abbi wound up with fairly Hi-larious results, which I can't recall. Meanwhile, the future husband got on, and he was informed of his role. This startled him, but it was all good. They also did M.A.S.H. for Kyra, which was funny, because she got Johnny Depp for a husband. They asked Qayte's future husband awkward questions, several of which he would not answer. They discussed his children, and how they wanted them. It was Cole's opinion that he should have, like, ninety kids, and fill up whole orphanages, so everyone could have his children. Then it was very late, so they went to bed, but Cole insisted on checking her Myspace first, which just goes to show you how low she had sunk.