Mama Kat’s writing workshop

Would You Care For Some TEA?

After a few years of Jr. college, I ran away to the redwoods after I was accepted to Humboldt State University.  And of course, I had to attend some stupid orientation where students tried to engage us and get us to have a chat with a  perky “if you could meet ANYONE from history, who would it BE?” *twinkle smile*

seriously–this may have been the birth of my misanthropy.

I think I said Genghis Khan or Mary Queen of Scots–just to keep the perky lil cheerleader out of my hair–but would I really  want to meet those people?  I mean, Khan wouldn’t have spoken to me, and I’m sure Mary had a serious need for incense.

Seriously–why do we romanticize these non-bathers?

However, in my grumpy, misanthropic ways, there ARE a few characters (mostly fictional) I wouldn’t mind having tea with.  I realized there are some books to which I return, not just for their wordcraft, but also because of some very amazing women within them.

so step with me into my ornate and garishly decorated parlor, with doilies on everything (why yes, I DID make them all), a silver service in need of a good polish, teacups with pictures of men on them, whose clothes disappear with heat, and shelves and shelves of books.  Oh, and my Chihuahua Manny–the only male permitted to this tea party (I mean, he IS lacking testicles…)

Elizabeth Bennett (Pride and Prejudice)

Ah, my dear sweet Lizzie.  With a sharp tongue, a well-read mind, acerbic wit and the ability to admit she was wrong.  Not that Darcy was at all charming upon first impressions.  But anyone who could stand up to that old hag lady Catherine deserves a seat at my table.  Plus, she knows enough about basic manners to keep the conversation going if necessary.

Josephine  March (Little Women)

And next to her we have the lovely Jo.  Perhaps not as witty or acerbic, but refreshingly honest and forthright.  With a passion.  I have always had a soft spot for Jo.  Making her way in the world. determined to be a writer (mirror mirror…) knowing that loving the wrong man would be the worst for her, and instead ending up with the man who challenged her mind.  Another well- read lass, but with American sensibilities, and not quite so much “refinement”.

Beatrice (Much Ado About Nothing)

This was a bit of a toss up–because it would seem quite natural to invite darling Kate to my parlor.  And while I adore Kate, there is something in Beatrice that speaks to my soul.  The sharpest of all tongues covering a tender heart.  Prepared to enter hell as an Old Maid rather than marry to please the men in her family, she is spunky and sharp!  No mooning over some silly boy at my table–nor would she tolerate it in others.

Sookie Stackhouse (The Sookie Stackhouse novels)

Now, let me be clear–I mean precisely the character from the book, and not that insipid nudist on HBO. I don’t know who that whore is, because she isn’t HALF as charming as The character created by Charlaine Harris.  THAT Sookie is real, down to earth and SOUTHERN, from her charm and hospitality, to her perfect usage of the phrase “Jesus Christ, Shepard of Judea!”  I might have to mix up a batch of sweet tea for our darling Sookie, but I’m sure she’ll still have delightful manners, and perhaps a saucy tale to two to tell.

Professor Minerva McGonagall (Harry Potter and the gazillion incarnations)

I’m hardly a Potter head, but I have read all of the books, and Minerva always stands out for me.  Oh, you can have your Snapes and Malfoys and Rita Skeeters, but I’ll take Minerva any day. There is no question to who she is or what she stands for.  No mystery, no back story.  Again–straightforward and honest (this time with Scottish sensibilities), she takes her work seriously, and works very hard to instill in the youth around her a solid moral compass. But she also strikes me as someone who would appreciate vigorous conversation and witty repartee.  Besides, I would HAVE to invite another witch, would I not?

For me this sounds like a loverly afternoon, where one might find laughter, debate, passionate declarations, snappy come-backs, honesty and charm.  And a nice Oolong.  Shall I be mother?

Mama’s Losin’ It

Categories: Mama Kat's writing workshop, Snark | 9 Comments

Mean Girl

So, I had this whole other thing  planned, via Mama Kat’s blog topic of someone saying something mean to you and not forgetting it.  I still haven’t forgotten it–but this morning I became aware of an attack by a particular mean girl, and I need to address it.



Since I don’t follow her nonsense I didn’t know she was the Key Note speaker at the Autism One conference earlier this year.  And since I don’t really care what a playboy bunny/MTV talking monkey has to say, I wasn’t aware of the contents of her speech.  Until now.  The video is here (she makes her lovely remarks around the 7 minute mark) and here is a delightful little quote:

“They didn’t get attention in their lives and then this incredible door opens…and they’re loving it”

You know who she’s talking about there?  Me.  And other moms like me who do not use quackery and other forms of alternative medicine that are questionable and dangerous.  Somehow, because I choose to not use chelation or biomeds or bleach enemas, I am adopting a “victim” role instead of being dubbed a “warrior mom.”

{aside–I am not attacking all forms of alternative meds here–I am a proponent of acupuncture, ayurvedic diets and other forms of eastern medicine that has proven to help people without poisoning them.}

Anyway, back to the whore, I mean, warrior mother extraordinaire.

She is making a comment here about seeking attention.  She of “oh Jim Carrey doesn’t talk to my kid and I’m gonna pose naked in a magazine”–yeah, she isn’t an attention-seeking victim AT ALL.  [please note sarcasm]

I am medically cautious.  I like to use natural remedies and generally let nature do the work it needs to do.  That doesn’t mean I am averse to a little neosporin or advil from time to time, but generally, I don’t take pills.  Personally, I think we rely too much on meds in this country and don’t focus on true problems for things like chronic illnesses.  That said, thank Goddess for penicillin and the smallpox vaccine.

But that’s not what I want to talk about–because frankly my stance on medical choices aint nobody’s binnis.

No, what I want to address is the outright INSULT given my one Ms. McCarthy to any mom who does not adopt her stance.  Ms McCarthy–WHERE THE FUCK DO YOU GET OFF?

I am not a victim.  Nor am I a survivor.  I am a mother.  Doing the best damn job I can to make sure my son has all the opportunities available to him that he deserves. My life isn’t much different from any other mom in that regard.  Oh–there is some different vocabulary and some extra appointments and hoops to jump through, but me bitching about that isn’t any different than a mom of a typical child bitching about soccer practice and piano lessons.  This hardly makes me a “woe is me” mom–as you pointed out in your book that put you on the Autism stage.

This isn’t high school, Ms McCarthy, although your style of dress and sad attempts at attention-seeking make me think you wish it were.  There is not a “with us or against us” mentality here. My choices involving MY son are MINE–not yours, and not some quack who has scared the entire world with his claims, which has lead to a rise in childhood diseases like measles and whooping cough, which can KILL CHILDREN.  Autism doesn’t kill, turns out.

You wanna know why there isn’t enough research into causes and treatments? BECAUSE OF NONSENSE LIKE YOURS.  People outside the autism community look at us and think we’re a bunch of kooks who can’t agree on a goddamn thing because of the divisiveness YOU have created.  Because of your fear-mongering.  Because of your stupid accusations.

Hell, there are people outside our community who think we FAKE IT, just to get our kids services.  Who takes us seriously, Ms McCarthy?  WHO?  Because of Mean Girls like you, I am almost afraid to mention my kid has autism, because more often than not it is met with either an eye-roll or a pitying glance.

My son’s Autism was NOT the end of my world, and NOT the end of his.  I make choices to not bombard his body with chemicals because I LOVE HIM and NOT because I want to be a victim.  And somehow, I don’’t accuse you of not loving your child because you make those choices.  See how that works?  I parent my way, you parent yours.  This is called MATURITY.

What I will accuse you of, however is a petty attempt at bringing the spotlight to your otherwise useless career and personal life, LIKE A TEENAGER WOULD, instead of simply being a grown-up and living your life.  No one, other than TEENS care about your stupid comments about Jim Carrey or your next spread in playboy.

We are ALL warriors, Ms McCarthy.  Any parent of ANY child, typical or special needs, who loses sleep over what to do to help their child, who sacrifice personal happiness to secure the happiness of their child, who pinch every penny and make homemade lunches, and play transformers when they’re dog tired, and sit up all night with fevers and the pukes, and sit by hospital beds praying, and strive to give them every opportunity and experience they can squeeze into a 24 hours day–THEY are warriors.  And you have no right, NO RIGHT to belittle their experience or accuse them of anything otherwise.    YOU are not the expert here, despite your attempts to prove otherwise.  And YOU are NOT the voice of thousands of mothers who work and live with their children’s diagnosis.

The only victim I see here is YOU,  because it is someone with a victim mentality that lashes out and bullies others.  So again–fuck you Ms Mcarthy.  You do NOT speak for me.

Because in real life, in grown-up life, the mean girls don’t win.

Mama’s Losin’ It

[update–i crossed off some stuff  from an earlier paragraph, because it was pointed out to me that it came across that i was discrediting those parents who DO choose to use biomeds or chelation.  That was not my wish–i wished to discredit the judgy-mcjudgersons of that world that look down on those of us who don’t.  Please understand–what you choose for your child is your choice–as long as it is SAFE.  I will NEVER condone the use of MMS or anything bleach or poison-related on a child. ]

Categories: Autism, Mama Kat's writing workshop, parenting | 34 Comments

The Anti-Bucket List

So, I’m a Pinterest whore.  This is not a mystery.  Pinterest is like porn for a crafter.  But not only are awesomely simple and amazingly beautiful craft links (on which I will never follow through) available, there are also funny pics, words of wisdom, wedding ideas, –pretty much anything a gal would want to spend hours poring over in the middle of the night.  So yeah–you guys have big titty girls and I have Prada bags and how to make your own febreeze. 3am is calling.

Anywhores, I’ve seen this trend of people posting their bucket list ideas–actually someone ELSE’S bucket list ideas that they saw and went, “yeah, I wanna do that TOO!” –never planning to jump out of a plane or climb Everest, but wanting to seem cool to all their followers.

Well–this crap has been clogging up my boards, and its annoying me.

See, I’ve never been a fan of bucket lists.  I mean, if you wanna do something, do it.  Why make a list?  Then your bucket list includes:  Do all things on my bucket list–and it becomes this circular thing.

Here’s an idea: LIVE.

That said, however, all this attention to silly things one does before they die has made me keenly aware that there are a number of things I would NOT want to do before I die.  So as a personal reminder to myself, and possibly others, I give you Anti-Bucket List:

Before I die, I hope to never:

1.  Attend a Justin Bieber/Katy Perry/[insert annoying teen pop artist here] concert.  Not at least without doing acid.

2.  Be burned at the stake

3.  Enter a career in waste management

4.  Inseminate pigs–EVEN for the sake of more bacon.

5.  Contract dysentary.  In a third world country.

6.  Vote Republican

7.  Eat a local delicacy.  ANYWHERE.

8. Base Jump or any activity involving jumping off a perfectly good bridge/building/hydroelectric dam.  It isn’t that i am not a “thrill seeker”–i am just not much of a “life-risker.”

9.  Breed champion African violets.

10. Sell anything door to door or at a card table outside of Ralphs.

11.  Get circumsized

12.  Get a full face tattoo.(this does NOT include getting matching face tattoos with Mike Tyson–cause that sounds kinda cool.)

13. Practice world champion streaking in Barrow Alaska

14.  Work in a fiberglass factory

15.  Proselytize door to door. (see #10)

16.  Help a stranger wipe.

17.  Organize and videotape an orgy at the local senior center.

18. Produce Gweneth Paltrow’s next album:  Duets with Snookie

19.  EVER watch an “auditions” episode of American Idol.

20.  Deal with any asshat who has zero empathy.

That’s just my top 20, really.  Lord knows if i sat on the toilet long enough thought more about it, i could come up with a dozen more.  But this list ought to keep me out of trouble for now.

Mama’s Losin’ It

Categories: Mama Kat's writing workshop, Snark | 7 Comments