Archive for September 30, 2009

Smooth Talking

Every once in awhile I like to post a little something on Craigslist to see what kind of replies I get from the people frequent the more racy sections of the site. Here’s an unedited response to one of my ad’s which shows how horrible men really are:

Hello

I will travel to SF or in Marin – it’s only 10 minutes – door to door – to downtown SF . My Pic – on your sincere Reply – won’t disappoint: I’m a Discrete SW MAN, not a Boy.

Clean-cut “Prepster” looks – depending on my attire: Face/Clothed pic I’ll send to you – on a sincere reply – is from a Work Bio, not a Sears Catalog, lol. I will wear my “Hipster” attire and looks on our date, as I look good in jeans and a tucked-out shirt too. Or nothing, lol. I am liberated and progressive. As far as “Sexual” goes, if we click and connect – not necessarily on 1st or 2nd meeting (there is the “3 date rule” after all), I have a great view of the Bay from my Balcony – and from a new Cali King Bed – which you can see on your back, side, all 4s, or on top. Afternoon or Evening Delites – I work from home office and hae a flex schedule. 40yo with a 25 libido (you WILL say “Wow, “David” (my pseudo), You DO play/make lust like a 25yo!!”), and 35 looks. Too naughty? SWM. 6&180. Brown & Green. Smart (is) Sexy. Safe, NOT Selfish: Foreplay Galore. Well-dressed, groomed, mannered, spoken, educated, well-endowed, lo..lust. To some people in the know, “You wanna play Backgammon?”, is known to be a Code for “Let’s have sex.”

Best,

M_____, aka “David” – my pseudonym
_____ and _____
Sausalito – a Bay View and a Cozy Flat

Well ladies, if you’re looking for a “Prepster,” which I think means guy who wears girls pants and doesn’t tuck in his shirt, send “David” an email.

When Expression Hinders

A year has come and gone since I visited the Folsom Street Fair in San Francisco and here we are again with the fair coming to town tomorrow, complete with all of the free love any gay hippie can dream of. For the people that don’t know what the Folsom Street Fair is let me explain: The fair bills itself as the largest leather event in the world but more than that, it’s also a massive gay orgy. Now gay sex is all well and good but when I was there I couldn’t help thinking about the fight for gay marriage and how this whole event, where if you take a wrong turn you end up in a circle jerk, couldn’t possible help gay people fight for equal rights. The event if anything it makes people less tolerant and supportive of the stereotypes that we all know and love. Personally, since my sense of humor is partly based on stereotypes, I thought the whole event was hilarious but the people who take things more seriously might be horrified with the events that were happening on public streets.

As soon as I walked into the area where the fair was there was a man chained to a fence, a black hood over his head while a smaller man stroked his member and gave his balls a little cup. Of course this was just the beginning of the whole man in leather event. In fact, there were so many nude men, I couldn’t look in any direction without seeing a gay man in leather chaps and a goofy little outfit sure to give any conservative nightmares (I’m sure the poor Hispanic family that happened to take a wrong turn into the fair still has them). In this environment it wasn’t strange to see various men expressing their love for their fellow man and all of his friends as I made my way through the crowd keeping my hands up in above waist level so I didn’t accidently brush them against any of the people expressing their sexuality.

What does all this have to do with gay rights? Well it only takes one person with a camera to spread and demonize the entire gay population. One of the arguments against gay marriage is how immoral the gay population is and this event plays right into the hands of the people expressing that point of view. Once the pictures did make it out, even the more tolerant people would have a problem with outright sex in the streets by the gay men who attend the event. For pictures of what really happens at the fair, just go to this website. I can’t imagine anyone who would argue that this event would help gay, lesbians and transgendered people fight for equal rights.

This fair is just another example of a society which has strived to become so tolerant where people can get away with almost anything that they want to. It shouldn’t be a surprise with events like this that the bill legalizing gay marriage in California proposition 8, much to the dismay of the gay population, was voted down in California in the last election. The fight for civil rights is as much of a public relations fight as it is one for equality and sadly events like this only degrade the publics opinion of the gay population.

Supporting Societies Addictions

The war on drugs has taken many forms and evolved in order to combat an increasingly organized distribution network throughout the world without much success in modern times. There are a plethora of excuses as to why after hundreds of billions of investments there are more drugs, addictions and drug-related violence on our streets all of which seem to make sense until they are examined for what they are; complex lies designed to fool the public while at the same time encouraging the use of the substances that are supposedly being banned. Why are drugs illegal and why with all the money invested in prevention does the problem seem to get worse year by year? In the real world, there is no reason to stop the flow of drugs, prevent addiction or stop drug related violence. You see, drugs are big business that serves, not only to enrich corporations, destroy the family and community structure but also to ensnare any victim of their use into the multi-billion dollar prison system.

It’s no secret how much money people spend on illegal drugs but one aspect that remains hidden in mainstream news is how much of it is laundered through international banks and the stock market. While there aren’t any concrete numbers of exactly how much drug money is laundered through world banks; the IMF estimated in 1996 between two to five percent of the world’s gross national product is subject to money laundering (drugs make up a large portion of that money) with the low estimates ranging at 500 billion dollars and the high upwards of 2 trillion dollars. The amount of money being laundered is so great that Reuters reported on January 9th 2009, that drug money had actually propped up failing banks, keeping them afloat during the financial crisis.

Aside from the direct money that drugs create, they also create thousands of jobs throughout the United States through the governments War on Drugs. According to the Bureau of Justice statistics 20 percent state inmates were sentenced due to drug related crimes it does not mention however the percentage of violent crime is resulting from drug violence and trafficking. Either way, all of the inmates need somewhere to go and that’s where prisons get funding from. Non-violent money is so important to the prison system that in 2008 the California Prison Guards Union fought against Proposition 5, which would offer rehabilitation programs to nonviolent offenders because it would reduce the size of the prison population and therefore result in lost jobs. The drug trade has been a very profitable part of the prison business with no signs of a decline any time soon.

One of the greatest effects of the current drug laws can be seen in poor communities throughout the country, namely the destruction of the family structure in inner cities. As the drugs flow into the community and the jobs flow out, the residents are given a choice to either sell drugs or work a low paying job that can barely sustain the worker. While the drug money is good for a time, there is always the ever present danger of being arrested and placed in jail which leaves many families without strong and capable male role models. The end result of the low end drug dealing in many urban areas is children are left without parents to raise them in the proper way but who in turn are raised on the streets by drug dealers and criminals. The degradation of the family structure only serves to create future uneducated drug dealers and addicts to perpetuate the cycle of hopelessness that the residents of the poorer neighbor hoods have come to live in. What better way is there to keep people in the prison system while at the same time keeping them from questioning the abysmal living situation that they’re in?

With all of these contributing factors, it’s obvious that there is no real reason for government to stop the flow of drugs onto the streets, there’s simply too much money and control that’s comes from prohibition. It’s no wonder that the CIA has be caught numerous times shipping drugs into the country, one of the most famous examples was during the Iran Contra Affair where drugs were shipped into inner cities, and supported the production of drugs throughout the world. Even the war on terror has helped the global drug trade by removing the anti-heroin Taliban and ignoring the explosion of poppy farmers which has all lead to an increase in heroin flowing through the global markets.

Hollywood likes to portray drugs like they’re cool and a form of rebellion but as I’ve shown; drug use only furthers the agenda of the people and corporations in power. Due to all of the pro-drug propaganda even the mainstream news and children’s shows advertises legal drugs to combat depression or any other conditions that can be created in the mind of marketers. We are totally surrounded by drugs and encouraged to use them by the mainstream media who portray them as a quick fix to all of a person’s problems. Even though most of the advertising is for legal drugs, it wouldn’t be a big step; those drugs are used illegally and create an acceptance of usage in general life.

People need to step back and take a look at the world that they live in and ask themselves if they want to live in a world of addiction and dependence or if they would like a real change. It would be easier, in the short term at least, to keep the war on drugs functioning in the way that it has. Real change would come at a high price, the economy would suffer, jobs would be lost and we’d have to come to terms with the idea that drugs have been and always will be a part of society. With the acceptance that drugs will never go away, real policies, treatment and education would be just a step away but in the end, no pill could dull the withdraw that society would feel real drug reform would bring.

The Man, The Legend, The Lone Wolf McFletch

“Since I was young, I’ve known I was destined to be alone.” McFletch said as he swirled a large glass of red wine between his thumb and forefinger. He looked down at the red liquid, memorized by the reflection of the dim light reflected in the glass, as he sat in the small futon couch and stared at the poster covered walls that decorated his living room. He had spent years collecting the random music posters and fliers which had converted the entire downstairs of his house into a work of art that only a teenager could appreciate. There was a slight glowing behind him from one of the posters reflecting the light from the numerous black lights, which served to enhance the artistic ambiance and to kill germs, he had placed along the walls and shelves in the room. It was as if the last few moments had disappeared into a plain of nothingness as he kept looking down into the glass forgetting that he had company he was talking with.

His eyes lifted from the glass towards the bottle of two dollar wine which had been sitting on the small wooden coffee table in front of him. He knew that the people were there to watch a movie but talking was always more interesting than that besides, he thought to himself, who wouldn’t want to spend some time bonding with their friends? His stories were always much better than anything in a movie he had seen. He knew his stories were interesting because they entertained and provided him entertainment as he thought about them. In fact, they were so enlightening that he felt it was his duty to one day write them down and share his knowledge with the world. He had yet to start his book but he did have a small voice recorder so he could dictate his thoughts and come back to them when he was ready to start. Writing had always been difficult for him but with the advances in technology, he could dictate his thoughts and a computer would convert them into text automatically.

Politics Of Tolerance

“I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”

From a young age, we listen to this speech and learn about tolerance. The words of Martin Luther King Jr. are taught in every elementary school throughout the nation but for some reason, race seems to be a bigger factor in a person’s character than their actual content. Why is there so much emphasis on race and is it directly linked to the tolerance training that we’re indoctrinated with on a daily basis? In fact the propagation of all of those isms that we want to distance ourselves from is directly linked to the increase in sensitivity training and social awareness that floods our schools, media and jobs.

Race has always been used as a tool to divide, even in the early days of or species racism existed amongst tribe of wandering men but in today’s society, the tribalism has returned under the guise of extreme tolerance and a self imposed sense of who someone is. It’s not hard to see, only one has to do is to turn on their television news will surely have a report interviewing a tolerant white man or woman who is claiming other white men who don’t agree with his standpoint hates black men with result being; the offender is labeled a racist for bringing up issues that should be talked about and debated. It’s the man preaching unity and tolerance that brings up race in a petty attempt to remove debate and free expression of another person, as well as spread his own racist views. Take a look at the video below where Jimmy Carter explains that people don’t think our president is qualified because he’s black.

The world today is one where people of all colors and creed feel an entitlement to being a victim when they don’t succeed. How easy is it to blame someone else for your own shortcomings instead of holding yourself to a level which everyone should be at? If a person can’t play the victim and down trodden how can they ask for other people to lift them up from the ashes and to support them? Eliminating one’s own racist ideology would not only remove people’s sense of entitlement and excuse as to why you can’t succeed in the real world but it would force them to take responsibility for themselves. Sensitivity training and tolerant social norms of society only serve to validate their own sense of self inferiority to those who need an excuse why they’re where they are and a reason they’re being held down by another.

What would the world look like without racism? Everyone would be the same and equal. People would be forced to use facts instead of emotion to debate issues, which would be destroy our tolerant based power structure. Instead of talking about getting along people would unite and form communities, which would also be detrimental to the system of governance which we all know and love so.

Would you like to live in a country where everyone had a chance to achieve regardless of the color of their skin, sex or sexual orientation? If you answered yes then it all starts with you. You’re the only one who can hold yourself to a level where you succeed. You’re the only one who can rise above where you’ve come from and become who you want to be. It’s a cold and difficult world out there and it’s up to each person if they’re willing to brave it and remember, no one hates people who succeed more than those who aren’t willing to try it themselves.

The End Of An Era

It’s always a sad day when a great career comes to an end but as we all know; everything that has a beginning, must have an ending. Luckily my awesome career that just ended wasn’t anything special in the first place unless incompetent management, low pay and bad hours are what make an exceptional workplace. I hope everyone that reads this pauses and gives me a moment of silence for my brief but unrewarding career at Safeway. There is one ray of hope though; now I can give details, including names of the incompetent managers and any other interesting tidbit I’d like to write about the place.

Have you ever had a boss who was a complete douche? I’m sure most people have and I thought I had too until I met Ryan, the general manager of the Safeway at Ignacio in good old Novato California. When I first met him he shook my hand and introduced himself like he was a good guy but after the 2 second “Hi, I’m Ryan, it’s good to have you with us,” he followed up with a “Your hair’s too long,” and “You need to wear a tie.” He walked away to do whatever it is lazy managers do and came back to me a few minutes later with a Hallmark Card hat(I conveniently lost it after a couple hours) which I was required to wear because people might be offended when they come in to buy food sometime between 11pm and 8am. Just when I thought he couldn’t top his previous level of douche baggery, he interrupted me from working and learning how to do my job to say “I’m not ragging on you. I’m just giving you the tools you need to succeed.” I listened to him talk almost in awe as he explained to me that he wasn’t making an ass of himself but he was helping me.

Not only was Ryan a complete corporate tool, but he didn’t abide by the terms of my employment. I was hired with the agreement that I wouldn’t be working Thursday nights but of course the first, second and third schedule he had made for me always had me working on that day. I called them up of course and had them correct the schedule, which was why I was let go later, each week but as we all know incompetent management can’t possibly understand the agreements that have been made to their employees.

I can’t say enough good things about who Ryan decided to surround himself with, his management staff was top notch. The only people more useless than him were the assistant managers. The assistant managers loved being the spotlight in our morning “huddle” and were always very positive and energetic hoping that their attitude would be contagious to the rest of the employees. We needed a meeting every morning so we were motivated to score well with secret shoppers so they could all get a big bonus at the end of the quarter. Every time I had a question or problem the assistant managers were the first people to defer their responsibilities as managers and point me to someone else. I would name them but they kept themselves locked in the front office for their entire shift so I didn’t even bother to learn their names.

Now I would also like to mention the nice corporate woman that hired me named Merissa. I should have known that she was almost completely incompetent and maybe all of the problems that lead up to my termination could have been prevented if she had bothered to pass on information to the store. It was obviously too much trouble to tell the store management that there was a new person starting who would be training in the store before I began to work for them. I wouldn’t even be surprised if she didn’t pass on the information about the night I couldn’t work, which would excuse some other people for their boobery if I didn’t let the dullards that manage about when I couldn’t work.

Finally we come to the end of my story. I was scheduled to work this morning and about 20 minutes into my shift I was called into the manager’s office. You may be thinking to yourself that, well at least Ryan was man enough to fire you himself but you’d be wrong. A short younger woman, who happened to be one of those useless assistant managers, asked me to sit down which I promptly did. She gave me a little speech about how I was still on probation and because of my attendance issues, they would have to let me go. I said to her “So you’re basically firing me because management mislead me on the terms and agreements we had made when I was hired?” She back peddled and told me that I should respect her and went off into some pointless rant trying to justify their decision. In a final little triumph she told me I had to give back my badass Safeway apron, an obvious personal victory for her that only showed how pathetic she was.

I’d like to be fair when I write these things so I would like to say there are some stores which I’ve heard are good and my experiences don’t reflect every store in the company but just in case, if you do think about applying for Safeway, be sure to keep what I’ve dealt with in mind.

  • Tender Sentiments