Thursday, October 18, 2012

Things I Did this Week

I should probably change the title of this post to "things I tweeted this week" because in reality I haven't actually *done* much this week. Which is sad. Not sure what my younger self thought being a grown-up was all about, but one thing I do (now) know: there's a ton of laundry involved.

I guess one of the biggest things I "did" was talk with my seven year old about Amanda Todd. We watched her video and just talked.

Maybe because I have a daughter...maybe because I, oh I don't know, am a member of the human race...I cried. This story is just so sad. At any rate, we talked about things.

My daughter, she had some insightful questions and thoughts. The last one being: "This means I'm not getting a phone until college, doesn't it?"

Yep. Yep it does.*
And then I read about Violentacrez via Jess Welman.

First admission is this: I never really got into reading Reddit because I have no idea what it is or how to use/navigate it. I did not know it was "the front page of the internet" (because this is the front page of my internet). I guess I just thought of it as 2+2 for non-poker-playing-people-but-mainly-nerdy-guys.

After reading the Gawker article, I'm pretty sure I still don't know what Reddit is. It seems to kind of boil down to this:
Under Reddit logic, outing Violentacrez is worse than anonymously posting creepshots of innocent women, because doing so would undermine Reddit's role as a safe place for people to anonymously post creepshots of innocent women.
Yeah, no. Reddit's just not for me.
And then there was Amy Cheong, former Assistant Director with the National Trade Union Congress (it sounds so official but I have no idea what it means) who, like Violentacres, lost her job after posting something online. 

She not only lost her job - she had to flee her country! 

Point is...: once we put something on the internet, it's there for good (or for ill).**
This time last week (so technically not a "things I did this week" point of discussion, but just give me a moment because I will connect the dots dot dot dot), was National Coming Out Day. NCOD, not to be mistaken with/for NKOTBSB, is basically a day when otherwise closeted gay people can "come out" of the closet and tell the people around them, "I AM GAY", thereby raising the consciousness of straight people that gay people a) do exist; and, b) are not all in bed sexing it up all hours of the day and night. We only do that 17 out of 24 hours of each day. For the record.

In response to NCOD, Ann Coulter tweeted: 

Class act, that Ann Coulter. Not real sure why she, a straight, 50-year old, unmarried, non-parent of neither son nor daughter, gay or straight, is talking about this issue.*** But, I will tell you from experience that she's right. In far too many instances, the day after a kid comes out is often "disown your [gay kid] day" for a lot of confused and embarrassed parents. 

I was twenty-two when I came out to my folks. I've always had a very close relationship with them and I love them very much. And, I know they love me very much. 

That said - the days after I came out to them was pretty much as Ann Coulter said - dispwnage! (see how I connected those dots? And, arguably, mangled used a word from 2+2?)

After telling my mom (ok, comparing myself to Jodie Foster, actually, in the hopes that my mom would be heartened by the fact that gay people are/can be productive members of society****), who cut short her trip and returned home at the crack of dawn the next day, I got an emotional phone call from my dad in which he said a lot of things, including the words "heaven" and "hell" and...well, then we didn't speak for about six months. 

As I said, I was twenty two. I had already graduated college. I had a job. I lived in a city far away from where I'd grown up. I had friends and resources. 

And still.

And still....A less resilient me might not have survived the stories I was telling myself in the days, but mainly the nights, after I came out to the people I loved the most. 

Far better people than me don't. 

Ms. Coulter is not helping in that arena. 

But when you re-read her tweet and think about it? Well, I guess she's just kind of telling the truth. 
And the last road leads back to poker. Ah, don't they all?

Yesterday, Donnie Peters wrote a very nice op-ed piece in PokerNews, in which he raises some most excellent points: 
What I'm getting at here is that poker no longer seems to be fun. It's not as fun for the players, it's not as fun for the media, and it's not as fun for the fans. The latter of that trio is the most important part and something that needs attention.
I read the piece and very much enjoyed it and fired off with: 

I wish I didn't feel that way and I probably shouldn't have tweeted it, but...I do. And I did. Unfortunately, I'm kind of an asshole, too (ask my brothers), so...there's that. 

The point is...well, I'm not sure there is a point. Except, maybe...wouldn't it be nice if there were just no assholes? Anywhere? Ever?*****

* No, Judge Judy, the gist of our talk did not revolve around whether she's getting a phone and there was nothing lighthearted about our discussion of a beautiful child who killed herself. After sitting in silence for sixty seconds or so, though, my daughter did ask, after the light bulb flashed on over her head, whether this meant she might not actually get a phone until college, even though some of her friends have phones now. Smart phones are awesome. BUT THEY'RE JUST FREAKING PHONES AND NO ONE pointstoself EVEN USES THEM TO ACTUALLY TALK TO EACH OTHER ANYMORE. And the answer is yes, you're not getting a phone until college.

** She says all ironical and stuff since here I am posting it to the interwebz where it's going to be forever. And ever. And ever....Also, where is "Gay World Park" and how can I get there?

*** This is not a backhanded insult to Ann Coulter's age, singleness, or lack of children. I am genuinely confused as to why this woman, who has no personal experience raising children or being married, has been given a platform to speak about either of these issues. Ever.

**** Yes, in hindsight, I realize that "Hollywood Celebrity" was really not the way to go. Also, yes, I know Jodie Foster is still, to this day, officially, in the closet. I was twenty-two and she was the only positive-ish gay-ish role model-ish I could think of at the time. What can I say? smh

***** Well, yeah, except on our bums, of course. ldo



  1. The Amanda Todd story was endlessly depressing.

    It seems to me that a lot of problems could be made considerably better if people were kinder to each other. (So says the last hippie on earth)

  2. I'm happy to hear you talked to your daughter about Amanda Todd. My daughter's in university but I hope we get a chance to talk about her too. And one more thing: Ann Coulter is a moron.

  3. dbs and Laoch - does it seem that many bullies just grew up to be talk radio/tv "stars"? Ugh.

  4. Thanks for sharing. Your story was very compelling. And I see what you mean about the poker rooms. In just three visits so far to some Vegas poker rooms, I see that the A*holes are out there, draining the fun away for visitors and locals alike. I'm beginning to see I was spoiled, playing and dealing at a charity poker room.

    I love how you weaved your story about you daughter, yourself and Ann Coulter.

    And like Laoch of Chicago said, "if people were kinder to each other"...


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