Thoughts about sexual harassment

Of course as a woman I’ve been following along reading and listening to the continuing reports all over the media about the various women alleged to have been assaulted and/or harassed by numerous and sundry political and Hollywood figures. Every day more names are listed. One of the recent actors accused is Dustin Hoffman. None of us know what really happened between the people involved. I’m not saying something did or didn’t occur in all these cases. What is worrisome to me are several factors. Why do victims not speak up immediately? Even if there is the fear factor that nobody will believe them, it would be on the record.

In Hollywood so many actresses are coming forward with their stories or with corroboration that things did happen which they knew about, that it makes me sick listening to the likes of Meryl Streep and Kevin Spacey jumping on the bandwagon. They are clearly legends who would have had some pull, had they spoken up long ago!

The second and perhaps most worrisome thing (and please bear with me) is, WHY are we not preparing our girls to better handle brutish behavior? Why do we not teach self-defense as part of physical education to all girls starting in elementary school? Because obviously it’s NEVER enough to just say no. Or scream. Or push a man off.

The third thing really bothering me is why would any woman knowingly go alone to some guy’s hotel room unless she plans to have sex with him? Really, please explain this one to me. Even if you’re an aspiring actress and he says it’s to show you a great script or read lines with you or try you out for a part in his new play, show, etc…? WHY? Didn’t your mother teach you anything? Because to me that is just asking for big trouble. Don’t get me wrong; I’m not suggesting that any woman asks to be assaulted, or asks to have her drink altered with a date-rape drug or sedative. Of course not! But use some sense, ladies! When you go out, never go alone! Buy your own drinks. Know how much alcohol you can handle and stick to that limit.

Know how to handle yourself in a crowd and be prepared to defend yourself if you have to. If someone approaches, speaks, or touches you in a way you find inappropriate, speak up, LOUDLY.  I never forgot what my daughter’s karate teacher told the kids. If anyone tried to hurt them or grab them, they were to yell at the top of their lungs, “This is not my mother! This is not my father!”

Well you know what, women could do the same thing in a bar, restaurant, or even a hotel. It would arouse attention if a woman started screaming her head off, and we should be doing it more. We need to stop keeping our mouths closed and let the world know we have voices and we aren’t going to allow big bullies to out-maneuver us any longer. It really is time to make a big scene and stop acting lady-like.

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Reality

I’ve been spending time while Sir is away working doing something I enjoy, catching up reading other people’s blogs and checking websites I used to frequent often and have chosen to bypass nowadays. It occurs to me perhaps I truly am officially “old” now. I suspected as much when I’ve posted on other chat groups I belong to, and I seem to be one of the (if not the) maturest ones writing. So many seem to be caught up in going along with what’s trendy and popular. This often seems to translate to being inconsiderate, impolite, blunt, off-color, unhelpful, rude, sexist, racist, stereotypical, and self-centered. Not how I was raised! And so not the America I was raised in.

Comments are often so rude and hurtful that moderators must step in and either shut down the comments of a post on a website, or remind members of the rules. It often reminds me of my parents at our dinner table saying, “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.” Where is the motivation and justification for this type of behavior? I wonder, and then I look at the men (mostly) leading this nation. Their actions, behavior and talk leads everyone to think it’s perfectly acceptable because if the man at the highest level is doing it AND getting away with it with no repercussions, it must not only be okay, but perfectly acceptable in today’s society!

My father was a career military man, and though he had many faults, some of which I’ve written about already, he never raised his voice, cursed, or made advances toward other women. I know in his own way, he truly loved my mother as best he could in his damaged way. He was an officer and a gentleman and raised his sons to be gentlemen. He taught them to be respectful of and stand up for women. He detested violence. In many ways I have always felt I am not of this era and it sickens me what’s happening today. The greatest nation which has always represented democracy and freedom is being systematically destroyed by a lying lunatic.

Progress

Perhaps some of you may recall the troubles with our daughter. She’s long been a procrastinator dating back to middle school, always putting off assignments and being bored by most of her classes. She barely graduated high school even though she’s extremely intelligent and has taken advanced placement classes and was formerly in an elementary and middle school program called the International Baccalaureate Programme. She dropped this in the 10th grade after having gone all the way through up till then. It was a huge disappointment to her dad and me, of course. Children who graduate from such a program with the diploma have many great opportunities a regular high school diploma does not afford. She also started skipping school and not turning in assignments.

In truth, I think she got this gene from my brother, who also was bored in school and couldn’t concentrate. Her dad and I weren’t like that at all. We were all A and B students, excelled academically and knew we would attend university and have a career. She attended a few college classes and said it wasn’t for her. She could not keep even a part-time job. We had to finally employ tough love, telling her she had to choose  something to do – either work or school or she would lose the car we got for her.  She began a cosmetology school in the town we were living in. It was a 9 month course. At first she really seemed to thrive, but as always, the complaints started. She ended up dropping out much to our chagrin. We told her she had to do something else. She ended up deciding cosmetology wasn’t precisely what she desired, she really wanted to do make-up, or esthiology. She (and we) researched and enrolled her in the Aveda program in Dallas.

I’m thrilled to say although she did need extra time to complete the program, she did eventually finish! Yesterday, she took the last of two licensing exams, and she is now a licensed Esthetician! I realize it’s not rocket science. For her though, and for us, this is a giant step to adulthood. I’m very proud of her.

An admission

I do not find the female body beautiful, sexy or erotic. Breasts in particular, I have a decided aversion to. Maybe because mine have always, since puberty been large and pendulous, and I am not comfortable in my own skin. I find human breasts to be so ugly. They remind me of cow udders or teats. Hanging down, so droopy and weighty, just serving no purpose after bearing children except the titillation (see what I did there?) of your lover. I do not find them cute or lovely; even the sassy perky ones just don’t turn me on in any way. Maybe if I had ever once in my life been able to go without a brassiere just once – to experience the wonderful freedom of being braless and running with no pain, it would be different and I could feel otherwise. Instead I feel forever imprisoned in a detestable tight underwire garment with straps digging in my skin, leaving marks and lines and even causing me to perspire underneath my breasts.

Then, I had the misfortune of being diagnosed with breast cancer 13 years ago. It was early stage, but back then it meant I went through two surgeries, chemo, and radiation. I should have had the sense at that time to have a mastectomy followed by reconstruction, and a lift or reduction on the other breast. Sir said we would investigate doing reduction later, and we never have. I’m not asking for, nor do I need sympathy. Okay, rant done.

Reflection of a Fantasy

silver

Way back before I even knew what sex really was, let alone D/s, I made up a fantasy world I would “escape” to when I was feeling low, upset, or out of sorts. I guess it was similar to having an imaginary friend, except this was an entire land with characters and a story line. You see, like many young women, from childhood on, I never thought of myself as pretty or desirable. Oh, I wasn’t fat or heinous looking. But when everyone else had beautiful long hair parted down the middle, mine was still short and awkward-looking. I’d had three eye surgeries as a young girl to correct cross-eyes, and my eyes never did look normal until much later in life when a surgeon finally corrected the lax muscles.

I wasn’t athletic nor did I enjoy sports. I was very good in school and enjoyed reading, which I did constantly. I was very much a home-body and didn’t have many friends. I considered most kids silly. And so they didn’t really like me either. I did have (and still do to this day) one bff I met in third grade and we immediately knew we were kindred spirits. I think much of my behavior had to do with dysfunction at home and the fact my father was a career Air Force officer and we moved a great deal when I was young. I believe I became afraid of making friends; that I might lose them. It’s fascinating what repeated trauma does to a young child (she says analytically.)

…It was a silver world, where women were royalty, and I was but a common, callous slave. There was little darkness, the daytime hours being much longer than ours. Therefore night became a very precious thing. I remember in this world, which I knew not the name of, being too low to be given the honor of knowing it, I was whipped regularly for minor infractions. (Remember, this was well before I knew I was submissive, which really strikes me now.)

The women, especially the Queens (and there were many of varying levels of rank, were the most incredibly beautiful things I’d ever seen. Not icy cruel-cold as Tilda Swinton as Jadis in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe film, but very similar, and silver, not white, of course!

I had all types of menial, boring, tedious tasks set to me. Now I can’t even remember what my brain dreamed up. Most of this I imagined in middle and high school when I was bored out of my mind, but now and then, a gleam of silver – such as the chrome on a shiny bus or car, would draw my attention, and I would hear the Queens calling me. No, I’m not nor have I ever been schizophrenic, but it was such an outlet for an imaginative, bored, maybe depressed child.

Sometimes I miss it. Which is why I turned to writing. You’d think I write fantasy or sci-fi, but honestly, the genre has been so totally overdone that I’m no longer interested in it. Now I have my own world with a house and Master to occupy my time. I have three dogs and a grown girl to think/worry about. When I have spare time, I have my writing. All in all, real life has become much more entertaining than that gleaming silver world. That’s not to say I don’t miss it! It’s strange too, sometimes a crumpled bit of foil or a flash in the mirror catches my eye, and I can hear one of the Queens faintly calling my silver world name…

All the feels

Those who’ve read my blog know we moved a little more than a month ago into a house we’ve owned for over five years. It’s 1500 miles from where we previously lived, and we were eagerly anticipating this move for over a year. The most recent tenants who leased from us (the third set of renters) were by far the worst. The other two took immaculate care of our house, treating it as if it were their own. They notified us when things needed repair and inquired if they could make changes. They paid rent early or on time. All was well. The last family was another story. From day one it was apparent they did not care one bit what we or anyone in the community thought. They broke the lease by having a cat (my husband is severely allergic and we had specifically said “no cats.”)  They allowed their two young sons to ride bicycles in the Nature Preserve behind the homes on our street, forbidden by the HOA CC&R’s.  They painted a baseball diamond on our street with permanent paint, also against the CC&R’s, and we were repeatedly called by the HOA office that WE, not they, would be fined because of our unruly tenants.

Upon moving in, we discovered broken and/or damaged appliances,  rusted BB’s in our backyard water feature as well as the light bulb in it broken (gee, I wonder why… all those BB’s…) and our mailbox dented in several places from BB’s and golf balls in such a way it hardly opened. The freezer part of the refrigerator was filthy with sticky red residue which was from a drink that exploded in the ice maker and ran down the door, seal, and onto the floor. The stovetop vent hood was dripping and coated with grease. Nail polish had been dripped on the stone tub surround and tile in two bathrooms. The dishwasher was so heavily encrusted with hard water lime deposits we actually did not know the inside door was stainless steel, it was all white. Every sink faucet dripped. Sprinklers were either turned off or broken and many bedding plants have died. One garage door is badly damaged and will need to be repaired. We had to replace over 40 light bulbs which were burned out.

To top it off, although we have had a service to treat pests (we live against a hillside so it is necessary) the house is crawling with ants. They told us they paid to have the home professionally cleaned.

I don’t understand.

I have spent so many hours cleaning (after all the unpacking and organizing) only to have to start over after re-treatment for ants, replacing light bulbs (dust and dirt fall from the recessed fixtures) that I’m mentally drained. The very worst part is, our realtor (and friend) did a basic walk-through before we moved in and told us the place looked pretty good, and so my husband returned 75% of their deposit. Now they have come calling for the last bit and actually have the nerve to think they deserve it, even after we sent a list of everything we found wrong. I don’t know how people can be so mean and self-righteous. They think everything is “normal wear and tear” and they only lived here in my beautiful like-new home three years and basically destroyed it. A glass shower door chipped. A big scratch on the stainless steel finish of the fridge. The glass plate in the microwave oven chipped. Granite countertop edges chipped. Wood finish of my kitchen cabinets all along the bottom badly worn away. Three years. I don’t know about you but that’s not normal wear to me.

This is why I haven’t posted since we moved in. I’m just so emotionally worn down. I have never felt this way before, but I’ve lost faith in my fellow man.

Thanks for listening, if you’ve read my sad saga.

Home at last

bunny

It’s not quite a month since Sir and our three dogs and I drove 1500 miles from east Texas to our house in San Clemente, California. We’ve owned this house for over 6 years and been leasing it out. That is a tale for another day. Our Texas home is for sale. It was a rather excruciating two day trip in terrible heat (the southwest was in the grip of a bad heat wave.) My car had an issue in that the passenger side mirror whistled/squealed at high speeds (reported to dealer the day we bought the car and repaired twice already.) All in all, we were so glad to reach our destination! I’ve been exhaustively unpacking, cleaning and organizing the house. Sir is continuing to do a ten day work shift back in Texas every month and he is there now, returning Tuesday. Last Thursday the TV, phone and internet were finally hooked up.  Most of the boxes are unpacked or have been relegated to the garages. I mopped my floors twice and cleaned all the bathrooms. Today I can stop and take a bit of a break.

We live way up in the foothills near the US Marine Base Camp Pendleton. When I was a little girl there was nothing here. I mean NOTHING. I feel bad man has come in and built so far up in the hills destroying the natural habitat… and look at me. Here I am living right here smack up against the hillside. When I walk my dogs we see lizards and the cutest cottontail bunnies like the one shown. My big boy Boxer wants to give chase, but I will Not Allow It.

I am loving the cooler SoCal weather. Was it a 19 year bad dream, living in east Texas? Yesterday I drove an hour and a half to Santa Monica, near where I grew up, to visit my best friend since third grade. She is getting married (for the first time) at our ripe old age and wanted me to be there while she tried on wedding gowns. As I stood at the door of her place it was as if I had never moved away. I marveled that I was, after 19 years, back home breathing the ocean air and chatting with my dear dear friend. I felt years of stress fade away and I could feel life and happiness fill my soul again.

Thomas Wolfe was so wrong. You can go home again.