I’m a Baptist, and I Believe that Gays were “Born that Way”

Born_this_wayI am a Christian. And I think gay individuals were “born that way”.

On second thought, let me qualify that statement. I have been raised a Baptist, indoctrinated that homosexuality is a horrendous sin, and further informed that being gay is a choice, and one that every gay person makes individually.

I still believe that they were born that way.

Of late, homosexuality has been a hotly discussed topic, and one that brings violent reactions from two opposite views of the rainbow spectrum: that of gay supporters and that of Christians.

Gay supporters protest, “Love is love! How can you possibly deny us the right to love?”

Christians retaliate with, “Your love is twisted. How can you possibly define this perverted form of intimacy as true, committed love?”

FB wars rage, with both sides raining vitriolic slurs on the other. Expletives explode, and tempers flare. I’ve read posts by enraged gay supporters, spewing out the vilest names for Christians that I’ve ever encountered. Contrariwise, I’ve encountered hate-filled posts by Christians which label homosexuals as “fags”, “filth”, and “scum.”

Each side is consumed by one thought: “These haters have a choice. And by disagreeing with us, they are choosing incorrectly.”

I’ve read articles written by previously closeted homosexuals. Some are guilt-ridden, some are jubilant, some contain more questions than answers, but every single one claims that “I always knew I was different. I’m a boy that likes boys, I’m a girl that likes girls. I’ve known since I was four year old, I struggled with it in high school, I finally discovered my true self in college…”

I was born this way.

With all my heart, I believe that statement. But I’d like to add one caveat:

We were all born that way.

I was born with a tendency to envy, and a weakness for selfishness. A judgmental attitude often mars my perception, and I war with jealousy constantly. My tongue is prone to quick, snappy remarks, and though undeserving, my family is sometimes the recipients of a silent moodiness.

I was born that way.

But every day, I’m given the choice: will I act on these natural, flesh-driven desires? Or will I choose to be the person that God intended?

As Christians, I think it’s easy to overlook the fact that others have different sinful tendencies than ourselves. Alcoholics look down on child molesters, hypocrites chastise immodest dressers, homosexuals deride hate-mongers, but in the eyes of God, we are all sinners.

Gay individuals were “born that way,” with a sin nature and a lust for unnatural love. But they still have a choice whether to act on their sinful desires, a responsibility before God not to stay that way.

God never created homosexuals. Sin did. Free will did. We all have a choice.

What is yours’?

Posted in Culture, gay pride, Love, Musings | Tagged | 3 Comments

Christians are Hypocrites – I Have Proof


The bold black numbers shifted slowly, rhythmically, ever upwards.


I watched the numbers metamorphosis, mesmerized by their clock-like precision.


Sighing, I glanced to my left at the large, modern clock, then back at the caller ID screen, which still displayed the numerical proof of my torture.


I shifted the phone to my other shoulder, wearily rolled my aching neck, and continued my vigil.


The angry voice on the other end had been at it for 6 min, 42 seconds, and counting. My participation in the monologue had consisted solely of sympathetic “mhms,” and empathetic “I understand you’re frustrated’s”.

The voice had responded with bitter accusations, vague threats, and fervent asides to Jesus, whom she begged to give her strength.

Finally, when both I and the voice were beyond frustrated, I said through gritted teeth, “Ma’am, we’re doing our best. Your check will be here soon, but until then, please know that we’re doing everything we can to make sure you get paid in a timely fashion.”

The voice exploded.


I pondered the question. It seemed rhetorical, so I stayed silent.

This was a mistake.


Again, I pondered the question, which didn’t seem have a obvious answer.


The questions seemed to have take a philosophical turn. Heaving a sigh, I gazed at the ceiling for inspiration.


This being the fourth irate call, I knew this was not an empty threat.

“Ma’am, I will personally call you when your check gets here.”

The voice halted, and an awkward silence reigned.


Before I could ask what, an angry buzz assaulted my eardrums.

The voice had hung up. Hard.

Twenty minutes later, the checks came. They looked innocent enough, lying on my desk, white and pristine, naive of the anguish they’d inadvertently caused.

Biting my lip, I scanned the caller ID for the now ominously familiar number.

The phone rang, once, twice, thrice.

I breathed a sigh of relief and waited for the beep.

Then the voice answered, “Finally.”

My breath whooshed out. “Ma’am, I am truly sorry..”

The voice persisted.


Eyebrows arched, I bit my lip.

“Whatsoever things are honest…”

I bit my lip harder.

“Whatsoever things are just…”

My lip protested fervently.

“Whatsoever things are pure…”

Desperately, I switched to biting the inside of my cheeks.

“Whatsoever things are lovely…”

Eyes watering, I held my breath.

“Whatsoever things are of good report…”

I pinched myself. Hard.

“If there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think, I said think, upon these things.” The voice trailed off into a reverent silence.

Mouth forming a disbelieving O, I waited for the clincher.

The voice did not disappoint.

“Have a blessed day.”

I couldn’t help it. I snorted. Loudly.

Then, I thought about it. This woman was understandably frustrated. The situation was, frankly, highly avoidable. We should have had her check ready. My company was liable, irresponsible, and guilty.


She was a hypocrite.

Her voice was talkin’ the talk (thank you, Jesus), but forget walkin’ the walk. The vitriolic tirade and the sanctimonious voice message warred for credibility.

Guess which one won in my mind?

Sadly, I had to question: how many times have I done the exact same thing? Looked good in church, yet harbored bitterness towards another? Quoted scripture, but completely ignored the implications? Done something correct for entirely incorrect reasons?

More times than I care to count.

As a result, I looked up the definition of a hypocrite. Wanna hear it?




1. A person who pretends to be what he is not.

What a dead-on description of Christians. We aim to be Christ-like.

We are not.

We aim to be holy.

We fall short.

We strive to be honest, and just, and pure, and lovely, but underneath all of our clean exteriors, every Christian knows the truth: we are hypocrites.

I am a hypocrite.

But, “Jesus, give me strength,” I will be a genuine hypocrite.

“Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”

Posted in Christianity, Culture, Humor, Life, Musings | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

To My Teen Brother: I’m Sorry. Your Christmas Gift Involves My Little Pony

For a big family, Christmas presents are an interesting proposition. Should every family member give every other family member a gift? For us, a family of ten, the answer has been a resounding, “I’d be broke if I gave all you jokers a present.” As a compromise, we kids generally pool our money, brainpower, and driving licences to give our parents a gift.

But not this year.

This year, I foolishly suggested, “Hey, you know what would be fun? Putting each kid’s name in a hat. That way, we can all get involved.”

The idea met with resounding accolades. I was deemed “brilliant”, “awesome”, and “the best sister ever” in the space of two minutes. A Cubs hat appeared in front of me, while raggedy strips of notebook paper fluttered into its sweaty interior. I held it out, like a harbinger of goodwill, and watched as everyone clenched their eyes shut, slowly drawing out a strip of paper.

Immediately, faces fell. A low murmuring started, with hurtful phrases like, “You’ve got to be kidding me”, “Whose idea was this anyways”, and “No. Just no,” liberally peppered throughout. Apparently…

A four year old girl is now buying for an eighteen year old guy.

The four year old was ecstatic.  Face ablaze with Christmas joy, the small redhead whispered in my ear, “I know ezackly what to give Jacob.”

“What?” I say, perhaps a shade too brightly, because she shushes me.

“Quiet! I doesn’t want him to know.”

I apologize. She accepts and moves on.

“He wants…” her entire body leans forward in anticipation, waiting to drop the perfect gift bomb.

“A fishing pole.”

Nonplussed, I stare at her, while her tiny head bobs excitedly. The eighteen year old has never mentioned fishing in her presence, nor does he regularly fish; plus, sticking a worm on a hook elicits disgust.

“Ummm,” I manage.

Taking my hesitation for elation, she beams. “It will be his favorite.”

I smile too, but for an entirely different reason. “Oh, I know it will be.”

The eighteen year old clears his throat. An arched eyebrow signals that he has heard the entire dialogue, heartily disapproves, and favors a re-drawing of names.

Hurriedly, I say, “Ems, do you have any other ideas? Like sports stuff, or something?”

Emitting a gusty sigh, she plops down at the table, head propped on hands. “I sink the fishing pole is the best…”

I commiserate. “I know. But he won’t really use it. ‘Member how you have favorite things? Jake does too, so let’s think of those.”

Ems misunderstands.

“My Little Pony?” she squeals in surprise.

I try to intervene, but the planning has begun.

“Pinky Pie is my favorite, so maybe he will like dat. She’s pink. And pretty. She likes to have fun.” Em giggles at the lovely thought.

I look around guiltily for Jake, but he has already left the room. Expectantly, Em waits for my feedback.

Clearing my throat, I say softly, “He doesn’t like pink.”

Ems face falls.

“But Rainbow Dash is blue…”


Posted in Christmas, Humor | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Judgemental Love – Oxymoronic?

Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.

(Charisma pales in comparison to sincere words, spoken in love).

And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.


3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.

(What is martyrdom without an object of love? Is it not vain show?)

Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,

(Love is patient and understanding, free of jealousy, and self-effacing)

Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;

(Love is appropriate, yet naive; innocent and pure.)

Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;

(Regardless of popular belief, love is not the lack of judgement; rather, love is the ability to judge wrong, while embracing the wrong-doer.)

Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.

(Yes, yes, and yes)

Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.

(Love is eternal, because its Creator is eternal)

For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.

10 But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.

11 When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.

12 For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.

13 And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.

(The ability to love is sublime, God-given, and uniquely superior to all other powers. Any Christian lacking love, compassion, and empathy fails to truly follow Christ’s example – a convicting, heart-gripping thought.)


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Herbert Loves Me, and Other Weird Things Librarians Hear

Librarians are not known for their lovability.

Lost in reminiscing, my grandpa once reflected, “I was scared of the library ladies.” When pressed for details, he paused, and his left eyelid twitched. Finally, he muttered, “They shushed people.”


Generally, the public views librarians thusly:

I cannot deny the existence of such librarians; however, the point must be made:

We are not all monsters. Sure, your childhood memories may consist of thin, pointy-elbowed, sharp-tongued, spinsterly book guardians, but the uprising generation of librarians is conscientiously breaking this stereotype.

For instance, I am a librarian. I do not shush people. (Except for that one teenager, but he was asking for it). I do not wear glasses. (I used to, but they made me look like an owl, so I have since graduated to contacts). Admittedly, I once tried to peer down my nose at a rude patron, but since my appearance resembles that of a sixteen year old, the overall effect was probably underwhelming.

Although I attempt to be a non-scary type of librarian, my patrons generally treat the position with respect, cringing as I call them on overdue books, fines, and pencil-marred margins. However, yesterday broke that mold….

Yesterday, a patron said he loved me.

Allow me to set the scene. I was calling overdues, a lovely task which consists of passive-agressive reminders about late materials, thinly veiled threats about looming bills, and/or effusive apologies for materials I called about, but failed to realize that said materials were already returned.

Typically, a call goes like this:

Me: “Hi, this is the library. I was calling to let you know that your book, Captain Underpants and the Tyrannical Retaliation of the Turbo Toilet, is overdue.

Embarrassed parent: “My seven year old checked that out. I don’t read those. Really. Never have, never will.”

Me: “Not here to judge, sir. Just stating the facts.”

Parent: “Ok, I’m…he’s…on chapter 7. We’ll get it back to you ASAP.”

Me: “No rush. Great literature must be given its due.”

End of scene.

Yesterday, however, the call went like this:

Me: “Hi, this is the library, calling about overdue materials. May I speak to a parent of Herbert?” (Name changed. Just in case a lawyer is sneaking around, waiting to slap me with a libel suit).

Rapid breathing on the other line.

Bemused, I try again. “Hi,  may I…”

A panicked whine ensues, broken by a tentative click.

Listening to the dial tone, I grin, redial the number, and wait. Patrons have hung up on me before, and the resulting story is always memorable. Therefore, I wait with relish for the punchline.

“Hello?” whispers a tiny voice.

“Hi,” I repeat blithely, “this is the library. May I speak to a parent of Herbert?”

The unseen person considers the question. “No, you may not,” he finally answers, conviction steadying the trembly voice.

Choking on laughter, I say, “Oh. Ok, then. Will you let her know that her son has an overdue book?”

Quietly, the disembodied voice admitted, “He knows. He’s done with it.”

Taking a wild guess, I say, “Return it when you can, okay Herbert?”

A horrified pause stretches for eons, then a flustered voice blathers, “Ok, thank you, love you, bye.”

Herbert loves me. Score one for modern librarians.

Posted in Books, Humor, Libraries, Writing | Tagged , , , , | 5 Comments

It ain’t selling if you already bought it

Since this is my normal modus of operandi, I am going to leap blithely back into blogging, pretending I have never been absent.


Maybe you’re the one that was MIA. Ever considered that?

(Little mind trick, there. My four year old sister uses reverse psychology on me regularly, with maddening success. Let me know if it worked).

Guys, I have exciting news: I am now a business woman.


That was me as a business woman. As you can see, business suits me quite well, which can be a pun if you like puns, but doesn’t have to be if you don’t.

It’s an awesome business called ACN, and they’ve been around for 20 years. Before you completely lose it, “She’s sold out her blog to annoying sales people,” hear me out.

I have not, will not, and will never try to sell you guys anything.  At 18, I enquired after a telemarketer’s well-being, listened to his 45 minute spiel, then politely informed him that I did not own a car, thereby negating the need for car insurance.

That experience soured my taste for sales. My business is entirely different, however, because you guys have already purchased these items.

You pay for utilities, yes? (At least, I hope you do. It’s irresponsible to wander around in the dark. Please be careful). Electric, gas, the works?

How about cell phones? Internet? TV?

I thought so.

Very simply, here’s my spiel in a nutshell – I want to help you pay for these services.

By helping you pay less money for your gas, electric, and what-have-you, ACN pays me. I win, you win, expenses lose – it’s practically a perfect scenario.

The best part is that you don’t have to change your current provider, nor do you have to worry about promotional deals. Please, check out my website, and see if I can save you money:


By the by, before you get angry about this blog’s metamorphosis into a promotional platform, let me assure you – this will not be the norm. Right now, I am excited about saving money, and I wanted to share.

But while I’m on the soapbox, let me make one more proclamation, “You can own a business too.” ACN can help you one of two ways: it can simply save you money, or it can allow you to make money.

Lord willing, I plan to make money (cuz writing is my dream, but it don’t pay the bills yet).

If you have questions, feel free to speak up; if you’re angry, vent below; if you expected funny, try this – bacon.

There. Promotional push over. Til next time, folks.

Posted in Business, Entrepreneur, Success | 1 Comment

So Big – A Tale of Gyms and Disillusionment

“Soooo big!”

I turned and stared scathingly.

“What did you just say?”

The jerk grinned, repeating blithely, “You’re sooo big!”

I stared daggers at my oblivious brother. “Is that a joke?”

Quirking a sardonic eyebrow, he pointed at my little sister, who had her tiny hands raised blissfully in the air. “See? Em adores being told that she’s a big girl.”

“Em,” I said between my teeth, “is a three year old child, with thighs the size of my pinky.”

He smirked, I sighed, and we joined the YMCA.

Somehow, the mere possession of a gym membership creates a magical feeling of fitness. The first day, I slipped into my sweat pants, which already felt more svelte, and preened in the mirror. The image which stared back at me erased the magical feeling.

Walking into the Y did nothing to restore the magic. Toned athletes swaggered by, all sporting muscled biceps and sculpted calves. Gazelles masquerading as humans loped around the track, while Arnold Schwarzenegger doppelgangers hoisted massive weights high overhead.

In silent agreement, my brother and I headed for the cardio centre, which boasted treadmills, stationary bikes, and a rowing machine. We paused in the doorway, horror-struck. Greyhounds were running on the treadmills, lean legs striding smoothly. A gray-haired man rowed briskly, knotted arms pumping hard and fast, knees bending in a fluid rhythm. At that moment, I became a hardened cynic.

jim gaffigan

In vain, I looked around for a slightly flabby peep. Ken and Barbie dolls stared back at me, disinterest oozing from every non-sweaty pore. Then…

I found her. Glazed eyes stared blankly at the stationary bike screen, which informed her that although her legs burned, lungs ached, and mouth parched, she had pedaled a grand 1.24 miles. A sweat-soaked t-shirt, which hid blossoming love handles, sported an encouraging workout motto. Limp, brown hair hung in her eyes, but she had ceased to blow it away. The white flag was being flown.

“There she is,” I said triumphantly to my brother, who was still gazing about mournfully.

Blankly, he stared down at me. “There’s who?”

“My new favorite person.”

As she staggered past us to the drinking fountain, my brother muttered, “Refreshingly realistic, yes?”

In silent agreement, we nodded, detouring towards a small weight room. It was empty, so we had a tempting array of choice equipment. Jerm started pumping iron, while I stared, bewildered, at the complicated machines towering over me. Finally, I figured out that each one sported a step-by-step illustration.

Sitting down gingerly, I rested my back against a leather support and attempted my first rep. Later, my brother informed me that I looked like this:


I informed him that I did not care, and that he could go jump in the nearest, preferably frigid, river.

Stubbornly, I struggled with my machine, attempting to figure out whether my legs, arms, or pinky toes were supposed to be supporting the weight. Glancing up, I noticed a guy’s gaze flicking away nonchalantly. Bemused, I glanced back down, studying my tennis shoes. Subtly, I raised my eyes, only to meet his once more.

Apparently, my five minute work-out was working. However, I was not there for male attention, I told myself firmly. I was there to become fit, healthy, and toned. Furiously, I applied myself to the up-down, up-down clank of the weights.

Three minutes later, I got up, arms trembling with exhaustion. As I walked away, earnest dark eyes looked at me expectantly.  Slightly annoyed now, I ignored them, striding towards the paper towels and disinfectant. When I returned, the guy was waiting.

“Miss,” he said sweetly. “Are you done with the leg-curl machine?”

Posted in Exercise, Humor, Life | Tagged , , , , , | 14 Comments

Dramatic Decisions – Move to Europe? Or Cut My Hair?


There comes a point in every woman’s life when she simply needs a change. Revamped geographical scenery is not enough, nor is a complete upheaval of her familiar quirks and habits. Even switching up her favorite restaurant never quite cuts it. Frankly, only one action can satisfy her inner longings…

A haircut.

Men, I don’t know if you can fully comprehend this inherent need. By nature, we women second guess ourselves. Does this outfit make me look fat? Am I fat? Why did you hesitate before you answered? (FYI, there is no winning that one. Tell her she looks gorgeous before she gazes into the mirror).

A haircut completely changes our negative viewpoint. Oh, you feel blubber-like, y’ say?


Today was a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day?

Da, da, da, daaah…haircut.

However, men perspire when women in their life announce dramatic, lifestyle-changing intentions.

For example…

I was in dire need of a change. Deadlines loomed, midterms menaced, and I could not change anything but my hair.

Therefore, it had to go. I announced my intentions at supper.

“Dad. I would like to change my hair up a little.”

Carefully, my dad put down his fork. I could see mental cogwheels churning as he cautiously glanced towards my maternal parent, then at the remaining females surrounding the table, each with a determined glint in her eye. Defeated, he sighed.

“I guess that’s okay.”

We squealed, already planning our bodacious new do’s.

“But,” he added under his breath, “I hope it won’t be too…short.”

Subconsciously, my dad views each successful haircut as a bullet dodged. Though never a dictator, he does prefers our hair to look feminine, a view with which I heartily concur. Therefore, his hunted expression never fails to amuse me when I announce a dramatic hairstyle switch-up.

“Dad, I’m going shorter this time.”

Instinctively, he glances heavenward. “Ummm. Okay. Yeah, that’ll be good. Good. Good change for ya, sis.”

Before he can ask, I wave a nonchalant finger above my ear lobe, indicating the new length. Eyes widening, he nervously clears his throat.

Then I laugh, and he sighs in relief.

Yet another bullet dodged.

However, I know exactly where his mind goes, which is why I am so vastly amused. When I say “shorter”, his mind conjures this:


“Chin-length, Dad. Chin-length.”


Being an angelic daughter, I never abuse this knowledge. Ever. (Except for when I need a belly-laugh).

Finally, the day came. The stylist chopped off my hair.

I hemmed. I hawed. In the end, I decided to like it.

Now, however, came the judgment. Arriving home, Dad poked his head in cautiously, surveying the potential danger zone. No buzz-cut daughters immediately attracting his interest, he started upstairs.

Just then, I came leaping down, bob swinging freely around my jawline.

Like this, but not. His bob looks more feminine.

Like this, but not. His bob looks more feminine.

Reserving judgment, Dad stared blankly. Finally, he croaked, “That actually doesn’t look that different.”

I smiled blissfully. This was a high compliment indeed.

“But,” he rejoined sweetly, “do you like it?”

Self-consciously now, I patted my hair. “Well,” I murmured, “I did.”


“Does it make my face look fat?”

Posted in Blogging, Humor, Life, Musings, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

I’m Baaaaaack

I nearly forgot my password.

It has been that long.

How are you guys? Maybe you haven’t noticed, but I been relatively quiet lately. (If we want to be precise, I have been silent since 6/02/2013.)

However, since technicality is not my thing, I shall say it has been forever and leave it at that. Much has happened during this hiatus…

You know that world peace issue – like, how we don’t have any? Solved it. Everyone needs to eat more cheesecake. Seriously, after you eat enough of that creamy goodness, you don’t feel like fightin’ nobody.

I won a Nobel prize.

I climbed Mt. Everest

I wrote seven papers in one week.

I’ll let you guess what I actually did. Hint – it was harder than climbing Mt. Everest, and more work than a Nobel Peace Prize (sidenote…does one really have to do anything worthwhile to earn that prize? Sheesh.)

In actuality, during this hiatus I have done three things:


Shushing people at work. Librarians…rocking the wire-rimmed glasses.


My professors either hate me or are trying to cultivate knowledge. I really think they hate me.



I’m really trying to like mornings. This….thing does not help my self-betterment process.


That’s really it. Work, homework, and interrupted sleep. Gripping.

But I truly am trying to enjoy this period of my life – it’s crazy, hectic, and if I never write a paper again, I will be just fine. However, one of these fine days…

I will be done with college. And on that day, white though I may be, and Baptist though I am, I will shake a tail feather. (I tried to find a google pic for this – just no. Your mental picture will have to suffice).

Seriously, I have missed blogging. And bloggers. And reading blogs of brilliance, glimmering with shimmery, written gems…

Forgive me. College papers do not indulge purple prose. It has been far too long.

Posted in Uncategorized | 10 Comments

6,000 Views & Writing; Or the Great Rikki-Tavi Rip-Off

Today, I broke the 6,000 mark for views.

(6,004 to be exact). That was kind of a big deal for me. Now, I know that many other blogs have many more readers and many more views and many more comments…

But this is my blog. And enough kind people stopped by to read, hopefully laugh, and comment to create 6,000+ views, which is mind-boggling to me.

Since seven years old, I have been scribbling poems and short stories, then shyly bringing them to my parents to critique.

Feigning indifference, I’d off-handedly hand over the precious, crinkled paper, scuffed by impatient erasings, and pretend not to watch them read it.

When they finished, I’d ask carelessly, “What did you think?”, already shuffling backwards, just in case.

“I loved it,” they’d answer, perhaps more kindly than honestly. “You are a good writer, sis.”

Proof of their kindness is my first attempt at poetry, written at age seven, and which I was convinced was at least second, if not first, cousin to Shakespeare.

“There once were two mice

Who were very bad.

Which made their family very sad.

One brother’s name was Ted,

The other’s name was Fred,

And I hate to tell you

The things that they did.

They had a sister named Jennifer

And they liked to hide and jump on her

When she came around the corner.”

There was more, which I have omitted, more from shame than mercy. My parents very obviously love me.

From there, I graduated to short stories, poetry (can I honestly call it that?!) interspersed sporadically throughout. I think my first short story was a grand rip-off of Little House on the Prairie and Rikki Tikki Tavi, having just read both of them. It was an interesting mix, but somehow it worked, especially since I was grandly ignoring the fact that a mongoose would never inhabit a prairie. Cobras, of course, have been known to travel the world, so I gleefully introduced one as an antagonist, instinctively feeling that Ricky (don’t you judge me – it’s totally different) would be bored without one.

Ricky. Not to be confused with Rikki.

Ricky. Not to be confused with Rikki.

As I grew as a writer, I still brought things to my parents, more confidently now, but still with a sense of insecurity. Would they like it? Should I have used that word? Was there one more descriptive? Less controversial? (i.e. witchery.) I held, and still hold, that such a word was needed  and was not supposed to be reminiscent of witches at all. I shall let you be the judge.

“Lilting, coaxing, pleading, teasing
The witchery of Music lures me
To an enchanted world of magic and wonder
A merry, elfin tune, ever changing, here
One moment, gone the next
Peeking ’round a corner, singing
Out, “Catch me if you can!”
I reach out longingly, stretching my
Hands toward the elusive promise of
Music – almost capturing, but not
Quite, nearly grasping but never
Totally. Then, like the will-o-the-wisp
She is, Music suddenly
Turns – and captures me.”

This is witchery - enchanted, irresistible. Apparently, this is not how my parents view it.

This is witchery – enchanted, irresistible. Apparently, this is not how my parents view it.

I ask you: did it not work? Even so, my parents remain my best, and most supportive, critics, though we still can’t agree on that word.

However, I find, especially recently, that my group of trusted critics has grown substantially, and if you are reading this – you are one.

Often, I have written a post and then sat and stared at it. Have I clearly expressed my stance? Too clearly? Been judgmental? Wishy-washy? Is this funny? Or just silly? Did I…

Then you chime in.

Writers by nature desire an outlet for their message, for have you ever read an amazing book and simply sat for a moment, basking in the afterglow of a well-told story? Then almost instantly, you look about for someone to share the moment with, someone who will love it as you did?

That’s what this feels like. I have enjoyed thinking aloud on this blog and even more enjoyed it when you broke into my stream of consciousness, perhaps sharing a like experience, giggling over a funny event, or just saying “I like this.”

I like when you like this, so…thank you.

I appreciate you all.

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