Sunday, January 14, 2018

The Cheese Grates It: My Resolution to Minimize Body-Shaming Psychic Attacks


Per my resolution to minimize the amount of toxic, ignorant, psychic attacks negatively impacting my life, I kicked the radio station which had been my primary choice to the curb following an onslaught of weight loss surgery ads and the afternoon DJ making the inane remark that "exercising makes you feel thinner. This is especially true for women." 
I now have the radio in the Forester permanently tuned to the publicly funded jazz station. I have satellite radio in the Fusion, which tends to be on one of the 70's or 80's stations or the Underground Garage. They don't blather on and on about bullshit calculated to offend and shame people with non-optimal appearances: bigger people, older people, women who aren't conventionally attractive.
 It's a huge relief to be able to do my job and have some music to keep me from dying of boredom without some stupid advertisement or idiot remark from one of the DJ's raising my blood pressure multiple times during my shift. I've thought about writing a letter to the radio station, but I doubt it would do any good.  
I hope one day we will have a world where a radio station playing such toxic advertising would be flooded by emails rebuking them. 
People deserve to live their lives without being constantly reminded that they are seen as undesirable thanks to the constant brainwashing by mega-corporations hell-bent on taking their money.
Advertising is usually a form of attack rather than an informative medium.
It's time to stop kowtowing to the Frankenstein monster which was in no small part created by behaviorist John B. Watson. Watson was a bit of a shit in any case. He was unscrupulous in his experimentation on vulnerable subjects. 
We need to learn to think for ourselves rather than allowing advertisers to mold our beliefs.

~The Cheese Hath Grated It~




Sunday, January 7, 2018

The Cheese Grates It Poetically: The Vile Truth

Abandoned House
Image obtained from wallpaperfo.com
Content warnings for profanity and gloomy, pissed-off poetry
If you have a problem with either of those, don't read this and then bitch about it
Anyway, I didn't write it for you

The Vile Truth
***
It's time to write a poem all about me
To tell a truth which will set no-one free
I won't deny, it will be bleak 
If sweetness you want, somewhere else you should seek
For I speak only the vile truth

***

I graduated high school back in 1983
Into a world which despises people like me
I was never spry or slick 
Nobody wanted to be my sidekick
I was one of the forgotten people

***
Let's get the eating disorder aside first
For although it's bad, it isn't the worst
In a world which treats thinner people like they walk on water 
My sin was being the chunky-thighed, chipmunk-faced daughter
A plump, unloved candle with two charred ends

***
Starve until you get thin then binge when you can no longer stand it
Same sorry story, I'm so done with this shit
To spy on celebrities and watch their weight with disdain
This society has a lot of reasons to be ashamed
A dose of fetish in a shallow, judgmental world

***
Why don't you sprinkle on a little more self-righteous hate
When I look at you, what I see isn't that great
You tap-dance a sleazy staccato while you whistle a disdainful tune
Sing "I'm prettier than my brother" as you sashay across the room
Attractive on the outside, but filled with a soul-scathing darkness 

***
Perhaps you should pay more attention to the shadows in the cellar
Of your own soul, and not that of the other fellow
Watch your back is something I learned long ago
Men who tell me I'm pretty have a hand they won't show
Predators have left me with a heart made of frozen filaments

***

 I funnel my sorrowfulness into my writing though I don't believe
That anything of worth in this life I will achieve
She ran away from everything that hurt her, even herself
I have nothing to brag on, not fame, wealth, or health
My struggles inescapable: a mind without doors

***

 If the deities think there are different things I should do
I want to hear it from them, not you
I don't know if I believe in magic any more
But perhaps one day the fairies will settle the score
I can't help but hope for the wrath of the dryads

***

On this shallow world
Which destroys those
Who are not deemed beautiful
In a very narrow way
Which judges people on looks rather than 
On the way they treat others

~Cie~

Notes:
Yes, I'm angry.
No, I don't want your suggestions on how I can finally become thin, beautiful, and find Prince Charming.
I want a world where we don't judge people on their physique or their perceived beauty, and Prince Charming would be just one more pain in the ass whose needs I had to attend to.
I don't pull punches with my poetry. 
I don't write about sweetness and light.
To me, poetry is hyperbolic.
It isn't a process of trying to make myself into one of the shiny happy people instead of an icky, dark, depressive thing.
It is simply me expressing thoughts that are not appropriate dinner conversation.
I am nearly 53 years old and I have a lot of health problems plus I live with a brain that has been trying to kill me for my entire life. 
To break that down into a diagnosis that people who need an explanation for everything can understand, I have three major mental illnesses and I do not respond well to medication. I live with this shit. I accept this shit. But that doesn't mean I necessarily like it. Whatever potential I had was stolen from me by mental illness and more so by a society which has disdain for people like me, make no mistake.
As to my body, I discovered health at every size and size acceptance when I was 45. If I had discovered these critical concepts years ago, I might not have tried to starve myself into an arbitrary "acceptable" size. I might not have wasted hours a day at the gym instead of spending time with my son in his early years, all in the quest of achieving a "perfect" body so someone might "love" me. My overexercising (orthorexia) contributed to a lot of the musculoskeletal problems I now have. I couldn't exercise like that anymore even if I wanted to. 
Further, these behaviors never made me thin. I do not have the kind of body that will be thin regardless of how much I starve or overexercise it. Unless I become terminally ill as my great-grandmother did (acute myelogenous leukemia took her from 300 pounds to 95 pounds in the space of a year and then she died--but, hey, she cut a svelte figure in her casket!) I will never be thin. Fuck it. If this is a problem for you, than you're the one with the problem. You shouldn't be judging people based on their body type.
I'm diabetic, so I have to be careful about what I eat. My go-to snack is seasoned Kale. My treat is five of those little "fun size" candy bars: two sugar-free and three regular. I drink unsweetened nut milk, which is 45 calories per cup. Do I think this makes me some kind of saint? Fuck no! It actually pisses me the hell off to have to mind what I eat to this degree, and, in fact, I find discussions of diet and exercise boring as fuck. Who the fuck cares what you eat or how much you exercise? I certainly don't, it's none of my damn business. I only mention it because my point is I eat a very restrictive diet and I'm still fat. A person's body type is much more complex than "calories in, calories out."
I have to inject insulin because I have a zombie pancreas. I also have to take thyroid medication, because I have a zombie thyroid. My PCOS is pretty well resolved thanks to menopause. However, my pituitary is whack in some sort of unspecified way. I have a crappy, third-rate endocrine system. My crappy, third-rate endocrine system insures that in a world where thinness is next to godliness, I will always be fat. I honestly don't care about that. It just pisses me off that so many people do care about it, and, further, that they think it is their right to care about it.

Here is your TL:DR takeaway:
Quit judging other people for their looks or based on what you think they "should" have accomplished in their lives. You probably don't know what battles they're fighting or how much impact your words have. If blaming and shaming worked, we would have no addicts, no fat people, and no-one would be mentally ill or struggling for even the most meager of "success." Try a measure of kindness instead.


~The Cheese Hath Grated It~


 Prompt List

The Daily Post
Funnel
 
Daily Text Prompt:
I want to hear it from them, not you

Hourly Writing Prompts:
Sorrowfulness

Mindlovemisery's Menagerie 

Prompts Blog:
I'm prettier than my brother 

The Sunday Whirl
 
 We Write At Dawn:
Watch your back

WNQ-Writers:
She ran away from everything that hurt her, even herself 

***
Word and Phrase List
binge
deny
sidekick
sin
slick 
sprinkle
spy
staccato
thinner
watch
water
whistle

funnel
sorrowfulness 
I'm prettier than my brother
I want to hear it from them, not you
Watch your back

The Vile Truth
Shadows in the Cellar
Frozen Filaments
Inescapable: A Mind without Doors
Soul Scathing Darkness
Wrath of the Dryads
A Dose of Fetish
The Forgotten People
Charred Ends
1983

Monday, December 25, 2017

The Cheese Grates It: The Cheesy One's (Gloomy, sorry) Holiday Message for 2017



Happy holidays, People, however you may celebrate them.
Apologies in advance for being a killjoy with a somber PSA. Please keep in mind that the holidays aren't happy for everybody. This doesn't make the unhappy person "bad" or "a Scrooge." It just means the holidays are hard for them.
I am having an extremely blue Christmas, partially for reasons that I'm sure most people could understand at least a bit. The majority of the big losses I've had have come in the Winter months, particularly in November. I jokingly said that I have re-named November Butt Month because nothing good has ever come of it, and people got mad at me. For fuck's sake, I'm not saying that if you have a birthday in November you're worthless. I'm just saying that I've had a lot of losses in November and this was my hyperbolic, snarky, and ultimately worthless and impotent way of striking back.
It was like an extra twist of the knife to have my Star Shower projector stolen. I don't put up a tree because the cats just destroy it. I didn't want to get another cheap string of lights because the instant one burns out, you might as well throw the whole string away. What a waste. So I got the Star Shower for something a little different. Then it got stolen, and I didn't end up getting any other decorations. 
I know it's a small thing, not like that guy whose son is getting a kidney transplant and some lousy porch pirate pilfered $5000 of very important medication that was left on his porch. I know I'm overreacting. Not on the outside, I appear calm and rational. It's all on the inside. I have bipolar disorder. My brain loves to do that shit. 

He once said that the only place he found peace was when he was playing.
I hope he is finding peace now that he is free of his very ill body.

I know people also think I'm stupid for grieving a person whom I didn't know in life. I can't really explain how or why this affected me so strongly, but it has. There is a certain magic gone from the world and the realization has come hard that I had a lot of useless and futile dreams for myself when I was younger. I was a foolish and unrealistic person.
The truth is, I would commit suicide, but I worry greatly about what would happen to my son if I were gone, so I hang on. Aside from my son and his well-being, I have nothing to live for.
Do me a favor and don't whip out the old "but, counseling and meds!" chestnut. I'll be 53 years old in less than two months. I've lived with a mood disorder at least since I hit puberty. I was nine years old when the hormones kicked in and I started growing boobs which I didn't want because I knew the gross way in which men reacted to breasts, and I started to get hair on my bits and pits. I didn't want that either. That bit of WTMI gives you the idea of how long I've lived with this shit. There's nothing new under the sun.
Just believe me that I already know what the options are and they haven't worked. I'm being honest about how I feel. Let's leave it at that.
I once learned a song called "What If A Day." It was written by Thomas Campion in the Elizabethan era. I have a horrible voice not fit to be heard by anything with ears, but I often sing this to myself. For me, it embodies the truth.

What if a day, or a month, or a yeare
Crown thy delights with a thousand sweet contentings?
Cannot a chance of a night or an howre
Crosse thy desires with as many sad tormentings?
          Fortune, honor, beauty, youth
          Are but blossoms dying;
          Wanton pleasure, doating love,
          Are but shadowes flying.
          All our joyes are but toyes,
          Idle thoughts deceiving;
          None have power of an howre
          In their lives bereaving.

Earthes but a point to the world, and a man
Is but a point to the worlds compared centure:
Shall then a point of a point be so vaine
As to triumph in a seely points adventure?
          All is hassard that we have,
          There is nothing biding;
          Dayes of pleasure are like streames
          Through faire meadowes gliding.
          Weale and woe, time doth goe,
          Time is ever turning:
          Secret fates guide our states,
          Both in mirth and mourning.

And there you have it. 
I hope you have a happy holiday. Forgive me if I don't.

~The Cheese Hath Grated It~





Friday, December 8, 2017

Friendly Fill-Ins December 8 2017

I know that Vinnie Paul is missing his little brother Dimebag Darrell today and always. For those who don't know, Darrell was senselessly gunned down by the very disturbed Nathan Gale on December 8, 2004. He was 38 years old.

Week 83: December 8, 2017:

1. The best part of last week was actually Sunday of this week. My son and I saw Thor Ragnarok at the Alamo Draft House.

2. The worst part of last week was the persistent pain from the tendonitis in my left arm.

3. The 31 Daze of Xmahanukwanzyule is a Winter project that I will be working on.

4. A holiday gift that I always buy for someone is: I doubt I will have money to buy gifts for anyone this year.



Monday, October 30, 2017

The Cheese Grates It: Drawing Parallels

I couldn't find an appropriate picture, so here's a picture of a Babirusa

I know that I'm pretty much the most defensive person in the world and that I likely overreacted to certain things that people said recently. I have a tendency to do that. As a friend pointed out, certain things which got my hackles up were well-intentioned. All I can do is to apologize and to hopefully explain why sometimes well-intentioned statements about developing a brighter outlook can rub a person who lives with a mood disorder the wrong way.
I think the best way to explain it is to draw a parallel to certain other conditions I live with which are strictly physical conditions, but which can also affect my moods.
I have diabetes.
I would like to draw a parallel between my use of insulin to control my blood sugar and my use of dark, sometimes hyperbolic poetry as an outlet for the bleakness that often inundates my mind.
My body produces little if any of its own insulin at this point. Insulin helps the body process sugar in the blood. Without it, the high sugar levels begin to cause damage to the vascular system. 
Now, let's say someone were to say to me "if you'd just act like people who have a normal pancreas, you'd learn to be like people with a normal pancreas."
To which my reply would be "I will literally never be like people with a normal pancreas because my pancreas doesn't work normally."
"Yes, but if you behave like people with a normal pancreas, your pancreas will start to behave normally."
"No. It literally will not. If I try to behave like people with a normal pancreas, my elevated blood sugar will start to damage my body fairly quickly."
"Really, though, Positive Pancreatic Thinking will heal your faulty pancreas!"
At this point, somebody might be getting stabbed with an insulin needle, and it isn't going to be me.
Most people can see that the above scenario is a bit ridiculous (although anyone with diabetes can tell you that we've heard a million and one tales of "miracle cures" for our condition.) However, a lot of people can't see that they're doing a very similar thing when telling someone who lives with a mood disorder that if they just practice positive thinking they'll become a normal, happy person. It literally doesn't work that way.
I'll be 53 years old in February. 
I had my first mixed episode when I was ten. I didn't know that's what it was then, but with the knowledge I've gained, I now know that's exactly what it was.
I had my first severe depressive episode when I was twelve. I also became bulimic and made my first half-assed suicide attempt by swallowing a bunch of aspirin, which made me sick. 
I was labeled as overly dramatic and attention seeking and told countless times to just stop thinking and acting as I did.
I've learned a lot of coping techniques over the years. One of the ways I channel the darkness rather than cutting myself or self-medicating is by writing.
I've been through a lot of undesired changes this year.
I live with chronic pain and am not sure how long I'll be able to keep working. My situation is precarious. 
I would never tell someone who tends to have a positive outlook on things that they need to create things that are dark and gloomy. However, people don't think twice about telling me that I need to write things that are more cheerful and that I need to have a brighter outlook.
It also minimizes and belittles my struggles when people say things which imply that what I'm going through is some sort of a phase. If it's a phase, it's a damn long one. It's lasted most of my life.
Sometimes I write funny stuff. I actually do have a sense of humor, which most people don't get.
Perhaps people like me do serve a purpose. We often have high levels of empathy. Perhaps by pointing out the hurtful things in the world we can teach others to be kinder.
Hell, I don't know. I haven't figured it out yet and I rather doubt I'm going to.
I do know that I like German chocolate cake. That much I've figured out for certain. I wish I had some right now.
My mind doesn't work like yours. I know most of you can't understand a mind like mine, but I ask you to please try to respect that maybe people like me do know our own minds and maybe it would be nice to be treated not as broken half-people who need to be fixed, but as whole and worthy of consideration exactly as we are.

~The Cheese Hath Grated It~


This is my Always Keep Fighting tattoo.
It's a real, permanent tattoo.
Some days its easier to keep fighting than others.
This is a reminder for me to keep fighting on those days too.
It's also a tribute to me and those like me.


Saturday, October 28, 2017

OctPoWriMo 2017: Day 28: LONE


LONE
Lonely
Lonely me

I feel unwanted
I feel undeserving
I fear I'm fatally flawed

LONE, lonely me, fatally flawed

~Cie and Pepper~

Notes:
Here is another work which is autobiographical to the author and also descriptive of Fetch's female protagonist, Pepper Baiij.
I desperately want to get back to working on stories again. I am lost without them.
At least I met Gem on the astral plane while in a troubled sleep that I hoped never to wake from.
In a world that wants sunshine, flowers, chirping birds, and unicorn farts, I bring you depressing poetry. Hence, I walk alone through this life.

~Cie~

Thursday, October 19, 2017

OctPoWriMo 2017: Day 18: Everyone Went On Eating


My life is a mess
She said, grieving her lost dreams
Feeling dead inside

At the family table
Everyone went on eating

~Cie~

Note:
This is autobiographical.
I didn't feel up to trying the Palindrome poem today and thought it would be most effective to keep my work brief.