This past Wednesday, September 2nd 2009 a great, and dear friend of mine passed away due to the love and allure of paper aka Money.
My friend, was a Vietnam veteran, who served 10plus years for his country, and survived many hardships in civilian life. He died because people valued money, more than his, or his families well being, and it saddens me that this honorable man passed away due to preventable circumstances.
This man, who impacted my life, and my wife's life greatly was denied the care that he needed to live, and it pains me greatly. I've been holding back the tears for the past few days, but tonight, the tears of pain, I can no longer hold back.
What kind of country do we live in where people don't give a flying fuck about each other? What kind of person can leave a patient on the curb to fend for themselves? What a fucked up world we live in, where the desire of money out weighs the life of a human being....
I shake with anger, with tears streaming down my face, his death was preventable, but because of fucking god damn paper...he was denied life. God damn, just god fucking damn.
Its been about a two and a half years since I posted the last go around of the Fortress room, I finally got the room looking somewhat decent earlier today, granted...not everything is out, I got 4 more totes in my closet.
Is that the letters aren't necessary...the kid mentioned in the link is what, 15lbs overweight, but with the stigma of being overweight, it seems like if you use the term "obese" people automatically think of Jabba the Hut.
Being 15lbs over, isn't Jabba the Hut, but in my mind even if the kid is heavier, the letters aren't necessary...
In my personal experience/fight with my own weight control, I was reminded multiple times on a daily basis by every kid/adult I came across that I was fat, a lard ass, and or lazy...
I grew up fat, by the time I was in the 6th grade I was just over 200lbs, at a height of 5'10(if memory serves)...and I topped out at 425 my Junior year of high school(I was 6'3)...
I was reminded every single day, that I was fat...I was reminded every time I looked in a mirror, took a shower, tried putting on my clothes, or looked for new clothes...I was reminded every time I saw commercials on tv, read magazines, or watched movies, and I was reminded every time my mother looked at me, and beat me cause I was fat, or the snide comments she would make...
About the only reprieve I got was from comics, books, and music...if it wasn't for those things, I probably never would have made it through high school. Believe me, I'm sure the kids who are fat/over weight know it, and hear about it daily...I recall a kid in junior high who just wore "glasses" and he was pummeled often/made fun of constantly...and thats just for "glasses"...its amazing what kids will tease/fight over, at least in my day, and I guess its no worse/better than it is today...
The reasons why I was fat...hmm, there are many, and the main issues around that I won't share here, but I'll share a few...I am the second oldest of 12...I was raised on top ramen, hot dogs, and bologna. That isn't a nutritional diet, but with how tight money was, and other issues, thats basically what my parents could afford. I was the oldest boy, my older sister hauled ass when I was 7 or so, so I was the oldest, and I was stuck at home a lot, taking care of my brothers...instead of going out, having a gay old time...
The main issue for it, I somewhat discussed in the above, and I self medicated myself with food, and I was, what I was...During my Junior year of high school, I was hospitalized with two blood clots, one in my left calf, and one in my right lung...during this obstacle, I went from 425 to 380...and I decided to lose a weight, and I did lose a lot of weight...The cause of my clots are here:
I was 235 when I graduated my senior year...I worked my ass off, and ate nothing, and did everything I could to lose more weight...I was anorexic, went to binge/purge, then I just went to purge the little amount of food/water I ate(which was mostly tuna fish/carrots/water)...I don't recommend losing weight that way, and I regret doing it that way, but its amazing how social/family pressures can impact you.
And do you know what I felt at 235? There was no difference in my view...I looked the same in the mirror at 235, as I did at 425...the only way I knew I was losing weight was because of the clothes that I could fit into...I went from a 4x down to a large(with room to boot), I went from a 56 to a 38(with a belt)...
And according to the BMI, I was 6'4 when I graduated at 235, I was still considered obese, cause I was still 40lbs overweight...if memory serves, for my height they want me to be 190(and excuse me, but fuck that). And, like many others in the weight/diet struggle, I gained a majority of my weight back...and I'm currently dealing with it again(but healthier this time, no tricks/gimmicks)...
But, back to the op...I didn't mean to get all emotionally tied to this, but I got suckered in...I don't think letters are necessary, the kid knows, the parents know...but thats just me, beat me, or flame me.
I've been busy for the past few late nights, trying to clean/rearrange my Fortress, and tonight...I think I finished it(more like, ran out of flippin space).
So, what do you all think? To much time on my hands, or "grow up petersond!"....
Superman all the effing way... Batman is sweet though, he is my second favorite. Also, the superman chest on BR there, has been photo shopped, the logo isn't that big... But, i prefer the biggest emblem... As for my reasons of like Superman, compared to say, Batman or Spiderman, flaws and differences, here is my take...
I think, in my case, superman being godlike, was one of the things, that made him a cut above the rest. He didnt' have to suffer any of the ailments, or other pains that normal people have(sometimes he does aka kryptonite and his other weaknesses, but by and large, he doesn't). He doesn't have to stand up for hours on end, doing a crap job, he is out there flying around, saving people, doing good. While us humans, are in physical pain, broken bones, twisted ankles, what have you's, superman never goes through that(if ever?). Thats one of the reasons, why I like Superman.
I played football/track and field through highschool/junior college, and I don't know how many times, I told myself "I wish i were superman, so i can win this game, or out throw that steroid freak from a rival school." In that regard, supermans prowess, was something for me to strive for. Trying my hardest, trying not to show pain, or any other ailment.
So, the godlike status, doesnt' bother me, it is something I admire. I also admire, that he faces foes whose power levels are greater than his, and slightly less than his, he goes through his rough days also, but his power, and his godlike nature, is one of the main things I admire.
As far as him being flawed...he is flawed. He wants to save everyone, and that is IMPOSSIBLE. That in itself is a huge flaw. Another flaw he has, is that he is in love with Lois Lane. A woman, whom, by all means, is a great person, and whom loves superman back, but what about the more, prominent issues, concerning a future with Lois/Superman. Superman, knows, he will probably out live Lois(highlander angle here), and that they will probably never have kids, because of the "unknowns" about kryptonian/human breeding. That I believe is a flaw, loving a woman, whom you know, in all likely hood, is going to die, and you will not be able to have children. I consider this a flaw, because the relationship will end, yet he strives to grasp onto the "now" aspect of it...yet knowing, in the end, she will die. I dont' know about you, but i consider that a flaw...
Another flaw, that he shows constantly, is his approach to enemies, he approaches them, as if "they" can't do him any harm. I don't know how many comics i have read, where he comes on some new superpowered villian, and he usually says "Hey, whats the problem" and in response he gets blown away, or embarrassed(punched into next week usually). Then he comes back, and fights the guy. I don't know, anyone who does this in real life, i dont' go up to some guy, who just started some guff, tap him on his shoulder, and ask, hey bud, whats the problem? No one does that, superman is usually a ask a question, than get served, than react superhero, he has to get served, in order to act in most cases, when it involves other super powered villians. In real life, if someone starts guff, people react immediately towards it, they usually dont' ask, hey, man, whats the prob? Superman, does that all the time...Batman, Spiderman, and a good handful of other heroes dont' fall into that pattern hardly, if ever.
Superman has his flaws, as does everyone, and Superman has faced his own share of misery, and loss. Superman, lost not only his parents, but his whole planet. Not to many people have lost a culture/race as aboslute as Superman has. I'm an American Indian, and through assimilation, and confrontation with the US, in the past, many things/aspects of American Indian culture have been lost due to assimiliation, and colonization, but not to the same level as superman(there are still some half million plus, American Indians around). He was adopted(as was I), and had to struggle, in terms of fitting in, with the human race.
He also has to hide his secrets, from most of the people that he cares about(or did/had to). Its rough, hiding secrets from the people you love(another flaw, maybe?), and when he has problems, he hits that secret wall, because he can't fully divulge what is "really" eating at him(which is constantly shown in Smallville, over and over and over and over and over and over again). He has a lot of things, that he has to cover, to maintain his facade of Clark Kent, in which he does master better than Peter Parker does...
Peter Parker, especially in the movies, is constantly getting fired, because of his Spiderman duties, but do you see clark kent getting fired? No, cause he finds that medium, which eluded PP(in spiderman movies predominately). In the case of Bruce Wayne, he is the friggin owner of Wayne Enterprises, he is the top cheese...Just like the Walton family owns walmart, and yet they have Lee Scott running the whole show, the Waltons dont' do nothing, but collect $, and do publicity. Bruce Wayne, in my opinion, is like the Waltons, a billionaire, who owns a global business. Wayne, doesnt' have to put that much emphasis into his playboy persona, well, not to the same degree that Superman has to put in to his role as Clark Kent, reporter.
I just see different degree's of turmoil, and struggle, than others I suppose. Granted, Batman, doesnt' have the extreme invulnerability, or power that superman has, but I do believe that each faces about the same amount of turmoil/chaos. One of my main beefs with Batman is, he always has an answer/gadget for everything, and that in itself, is impossible in its own right. People say, superman has to many powers, god like, i say, Batman has the same problem, he overcomes everything with some gadget, or by strategic planning. Its almost akin to the Anti-Shark Reppelent spray bit in Batman The Movie, but they fancy it up in comics, with some grand invention, or serum, or armor, or something like that, but its end, achieves the same thing, yet one has a cheesy name, the other has a cool, hip name.
I have read a lot of batman/superman comics, its almost impossible to read just one of them, without the other hero coming onto the scene. I see the inner struggles in both, I just happen to like superman more. I think Superman's creation story, is very deep, and has grown more so through the years...
I can also relate to superman because
1. I'm adopted
2. I know what it means, to lose ones culture through disaster
3. Being different(him with his power, me, with many flaws!)
4. I'm big/strong/tall, not like superman though... Most people, put a lot of physical burden on me, and responsibility, because of my size, and also how i socially interact with people. Also, because of my size, in the fights that I have been in(football stories, oh god) I am the first target of attack, much like Superman is, in most cases.
5. I have held back secrets, from the people I love, care about...
6. I stick up for people, and protect those who are in need, and superman is saturated with that.
7. I see the good in everyone, much like superman does...
The list goes on...but, what do i have in common with Batman?
1.Did i lose my parents? Nope, not yet, and thank god.
2.Am i a rich, billionaire? Nope.
3.Do I have a cool car, gadgets? Nope
4.Do I know any martial arts, fighting styles? Judo, wrestling...thats it...
5.Am I a master strategist? I'm a decent chess player does, that count?
So, far i'm not batting very good, but don't get me wrong, I like batman, he is my number 2. Batman, to me, is like a Clint Eastwood character in his old spaghetti westerns, a bad ass, who takes care of business quick, and who knows exactly what to do in every circumstance...in most cases, superman doesn't know, in most cases, Batman knows exactly what to do...but, that is just my two cents, flame away if you must...I am a superman fan, and I hope/believe/have faith that SR will be a fantastic movie...
I'm american indian, and my field is American Indian Studies, and social work. Assimiliation, and colonization has done its handy work, and it cannot be undone. Nor, should it fully be undone. In order to make it in todays society, we as american indians have to realize that there are some traits/lessons to be learned, in order to function in the main stream society. BUT...Many american indians fully grasped onto what the "main stream society aka the oppressors ways" so fully, its amazing, that there are is any culture left, of the American Indians.
Language, and a slew of other things have been literally wiped out, literally. There are still a lot of indians, who can speak their language, and the fight to preserve those cultural aspects are in full swing, but compared to how many spoke their native tongue, prior contact? Its not even close. But, your post, has hit the nail on the head, and in my experience, this is probably one of the most major issues, to overcome.
I have come across american indians, who don't even know, what has been done to them, or their ancestors, and it amazes me when I see other indians cheer for the cowboys in western movies, or cheer for the Dallas Cowboys...it just plan makes no sense. Its a task, to just show/prove to some indians, that in fact, some of the things they do, are WHITE.
I get a big kick out of indians, who are so...LOUD about how indian they are, but act, and behave in the opposite grain. During one of my classes at Haskell Indian Nations Univesity, this big AIM guy, was spouting off this hate america/white crap, and i was sitting their sizing this guy up. Nike shoes, hmm, 80 bucks easy, dallas cowboy hat, 20 bucks, easy, gold chain around his neck, 100 bucks, easy, his clothes, abercrombie/finch, i have no idea, but i know that shit is expensive...can you see the oxymoron of this?
My first question, to this guy, was "If you proclaim all this proud to be indian shit, why are you wearing our conqueror's clothes? Why are you contributing to what, has destroyed native americans?" The guy was pissed...and lo and behold, the first thing he attacks me with, is my skin color, cause i'm not as dark as other indians...
The class was a good one, the AIM guy got hammered by a few other students, who actually lived the life, of an american indian. But, by and large, the class looked up to this guy...what a mess, i say. I have no problem, if this AIM guy actually did something for indian country, but he didn't. I won't name names, but he doesn' speak his language, he doesn't participate in NAC, or any of his cultural dances, art, he doesn't even pow-wow. As a matter of fact, he was raised by an upper tier white family, who adopted him, and just recently found his indian heritage, and is nothing, to me, at leats, but a fake indian, who beats the drum, but doesn't do anything to help....
Now, I dont' want to soudn like i'm attacking, the white culture, its okay to wear clothes, to spend your money on whatever, but when you start spouting stuff off, you better live the message you are trying to get across, at least with me you do. I have seen to much in indian country to believe that all Indians, are trying to do good for their own, because of asshats like this AIM guy. I have read/discussed with other AIM memebers, who I know are genuine, but the fake ones make me so upset.
Now, back to assimliation, and the thought, that accepting some of it is vital. We live in the white mans/corporatte world, we need to learn the ways of that culture in order to survive, and some indians disagree, but I don't, on that subject. On matters of spirituality, dancing, artwork, and the other traits of indian culture, we can KEEP THAT and should strive to keep it, but many indians don't. The same line of thought, can be seen in other cultures as well. With African Americans, why are they dressing/acting like gangsters, acting like its part of who they are? There roots come from different tribes in Africa, but I see very little of african americans keep that aspect of their culture alive.
I have seen a few blacks, who discover their roots in africa, but not many, and its weird, that not more are trying...damn, there culture in many ways are STILL IN TACT, and still growing. With american indians, we dont' hve that luxury, since so much has been thrown to the way side. Its amazing,that there are so many resources for other cultures to learn their roots, and yet, those people don't research them(i'm not saying all, but some)...if your norwegian, norway is still in existance, the language is in full swing, the dishes, dances, and spirituality of their culture is still there...but you catch my drift(i hope).
I'm done ranting, i'm probably preaching to the choir...but in vein with your post...I was a in the same boat when i was growing up. I would watch john wayne movies, and other westerns, and I would always cheer for the troops, to wipe out the indian threat, and i never gave it another thought, until high school(thank god my us history teacher was honest, he was awesome!), when i started learning/understand/questioning our countries history...adn that vein of thought, follows with me to this day.
Going to school at Haskell Indian Nations University was a godsend. I learned so much there...mainstream public education, is probably the biggest enemy of truth, and reality..but like the saying goes, the history is written by the victors. It reminds me, of what my old us history teacher said..."notice class, that in this book, the american indian war/with the us, only takes up half a page. Now, realize that american indians fought long and hard, and for decades, yet they got half a page of history, and look at viet nam, war lasted, 12 yrs give or take, and there is 100 pages of history on it...and i ask, think, think think..."....thats a paraphrase of course....
On edit:Vine Deloria's writing, on this subject are very good. IF you are interested, i recommend reading all, of his writings, he is a very...down to earth man, and his perspective on a good range of things, are in my opinion, accurate
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