A few thoughts on respect, abuse, how we get along (or don’t) with each other.

I’ve been reading Matt Walsh’s blog, and put a couple of comments in as well. Two recent entries concerned when it’s right for a man to hit a woman (quickie clue: never) and men getting respect from their wives (flip side: wives should be loved and cherished by their husbands). You can see his blog using the link I provided in an earlier post, if I forget to add a link to this post.

I come into this mix from a rather stormy past. I have been married and divorced twice, both times with the same woman– the second marriage being the “reconciliation” marriage. There was about a 25 year spread between the two marriages, I did try dating in between times with rather indifferent results. The last months of the last marriage left me with no desire to ever do that again, and I find that this labels me as “bitter”. Hmmm… I wonder why?

I’m not going to go into a blow-by-blow account here. If you really want to see that kind of thing Reddit has an abundance of “Scumbag Stacy” and “Scumbag Steve” memes that should give you as much as you can stand of every kind of skunky dealings imaginable, and I fancy that should suffice. I will state that I was called some of the worst things, accused falsely of abominations, hit in the face and she demanded that I make the divorce happen.

On the night of March 4th, 2009, I was driven out of the apartment and had the job of finding a place to spend the night. Sleeping in the van– (at that time I drove a 2005 Dodge Sprinter) was quickly ruled out because the Sprinter would not maintain heat at idle. Diesels tend to run cold in winter, while you can get good cabin heat at highway speed it will chill down to nada at idle speed– so sleeping in the van was not an option. That left my sister’s house. That also meant that “fun and games” was over since I could not, in good conscience, put my sister and her husband through a number of rounds of trying to repair my marriage and having to run back to them again. Besides, I’d been through this before and I knew the pattern all too well. Yes, there is a pattern and if you look up “domestic abuse” you can find that there’s stormy periods followed by periods of reconciliation followed by another stormy period and so on. That had to end, it’s just not right to put other people through that kind of shenanigans.

My sister and her husband stood by me, helped me get a decent apartment not too far from where they lived, and between them and friends at the church I attend got me set up in livable condition for the next few years. I finished the divorce proceedings in November of ’09, got through Chapter 7 bankruptcy the following year and I’ve been working down the debt that you can’t bankrupt out on since then. That’s nearly done, next month I write the final check on that God willing.

I stated in some of my comments on Matt’s blog that for me, never again means never again. So it most certainly does, for a number of reasons. One is that I’m nearly broke, and it would appear that women as a general rule don’t like dating guys who are broke. Being divorced twice makes a fellow run a bit shy too. Then there’s a bit of symbolism. I swore that I would NEVER, EVER buy another ring. I won’t, neither, and it all has to do with the way the last ones ended up. She had either pawned or lost her rings, and one afternoon she forcibly removed my wedding band from my finger so she could sell it for money. Now, the set of three rings (one engagement ring and his&her wedding bands) sold for only a couple of thousand so there wasn’t going to be much money on resale for anybody– but in wedding bands, there are two and only two potential real values. One is “beyond price” when it’s on the finger of somebody who really loves their spouse. The other is “not fit to be thrown in the street” when the spouse is forcibly removing it from your finger to sell it, probably at a pawn shop. So, to me, today, diamonds have the value of common gravel and the ring it’s mounted on is a bit of scrap-metal– and I refuse to pay that much for what amounts to costume jewelry. Personally, I won’t be doing that again.

Now, FWIW, I have made an effort at forgiving. I know well that what happened before will happen again if I were to be dumb enough to let it– there’s been no meaningful change there– so I have no intention of letting that happen again. But, I really don’t want to pack that sort of thing around indefinitely. I never could handle deep bitterness well. Fortunately, God placed people in my life that help. One is a woman– I doubt that we’d ever marry because she’s nearly as old as my mother would be, but if we were closer in age— well, I just might have to change my “never again” tune a might. I get called over to her place to help her with the types of things a man does around the house– as part of the mens group at the church some of us volunteer to help out others– and she’s about as sweet a woman as I could hope to come across. Getting called to her house to fix some small issue with a window that won’t close right, or to help her with her TV (too many remotes and it’s an old set) isn’t that formidable a problem, and she’s appreciative– in an appropriate way, we’re church people, remember– so I don’t mind helping with things like that.

Now, don’t y’all get used to me writing stuff like this. I doubt that I’ll throw open the reserves here any too deeply, for one thing I’m very conscious of the fact that there’s much I could say that is better left unsaid. We have “privacy” for a reason after all, and truth is I really don’t want to get into a “revenge” thing by airing stuff that shoulda been left alone. Some things should have been dealt more thoroughly at the time but now five years have gone by since I was driven out of our apartment, four and a half since the divorce became final, and it’s best to leave it alone in the past where it belongs.

Now, I’ve mentioned Matt’s blog several times, he’s one of about half a dozen that I’m following these days. Here’s the link, so you don’t have to chase down to find it:

http://themattwalshblog.com/

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Fork in the road time.

Yes, reader (I suspect there’s never more than one or two at the most, this blog isn’t a hot property yet) it’s getting close to time for me to make some decisions. A fork in the road approaches, caused by the imminent demise of  MyOpera on March 1st.

I had a blog there some photos, maybe a couple of odds and ends and of course I frequented the Debates and Discussion forum there. Replacing MyOpera and trying to keep the community we had there going presents formidable problems and at this writing I’m not sure how things will turn out. 2liv3.com is the place for some of my photos, anyway, WordPress seems to be the best bet for my blog and DnDsanctuary.eu looks like the place, at least for the moment, where the fellows I hang out with on D&D are gathering. Many people have jumped to Vivaldi.net, but truth to tell I have a suspicion it doesn’t have “legs” to go any distance.

I’ve been a “forum junkie” half past forever, but right at the moment I’d have to confess to being less than happy with the way things are shaping up at the Vivaldi or DnDsanctuary forums. I think DnD has the better chance at making it, but time will tell on that one.

That leaves this blog. I admit that when I started this here I really had only the sketchiest idea of what I wanted to do with it, and in all probability it was going to become one of those sites where you can’t even get your best friend to read the thing because nothing ever happens here. Maybe I can change that– since starting here I’ve been looking at what others are doing and of course I dream of the day when this blog produces actual revenue– not enough maybe to replace my job, but enough to be worth it anyway. In any case, I’m not at all sure I would want to replace my job since it’s a good one except that it could pay better. But, expedited freight in a van– working life doesn’t get better than that so I’m in no hurry to replace my job.

 

There’s a few of you folk I’m following, and maybe what you’re doing will rub off on me.  I’ll give this some time and effort, let’s see where this goes.

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NSA spying, and why you SHOULD be concerned.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock and communicating only by hand-written notes delivered by people known to you, you’ve no doubt heard about American spy agencies and their penchant for listening– and reading– everything that passes electronically. Here on WordPress we just had a blog— see here: http://en.blog.wordpress.com/2014/02/11/the-day-we-fight-back/ that goes into some detail about fighting back by displaying a banner ad.

Now, obviously anybody who gets bent out of shape because the NSA might see your publicly viewable blog, or a forum post (I am personally guilty of many forum posts on several different sites) might have a screw loose. Blogs and forums are generally PUBLIC, which means anybody can read these things whenever they feel like it. Same thing goes for anything posted to varying degrees of public exposure on social media, like Facebook or Twitter.

When we get to things like text messages, email, your phone calls and so on, things get quite a bit dicier really fast. You have, or should have, a reasonable expectation of privacy when you’re calling your wife, for example. It’s none of my business whether the call you make to your wife is about when dinner is going to be ready, who picks up the kids or what kinky sex positions you have planned for tonight. It’s really none of the NSA’s business, either– but they MAY be sticking their nose in it. They say they’re only collecting “metadata” like phone numbers called, duration of call and so on, but the NSA is filled with professional liars so I wouldn’t take anything they say at face value these days.

For those of you who live in the United States and think that if you’re not doing anything wrong, it shouldn’t bother you— I have bad news. It most certainly SHOULD bother you, if for no other reason than that your Constitutional rights— rights our guys and lately gals in uniform have been supposedly at least fighting and dying to protect– are getting trashed right and left lately. You can just about forget about the 4th Amendment– that’s the one that says the government can’t come in and search and seize anything without proper warrants– because the government has determined that if they lie and use enough weasel words you don’t HAVE any 4th Amendment rights and they can pretty much do as they please– without cause, without even any suspicion that you might be doing something wrong, really just because the government guy feels like it.

How “public” do you really want to be? Hey, you’ve got nothing to hide, right?? Maybe tell us ALL about how many times you and your significant other have sex, who your friends are and where you met them, who your business associates are and where you met them and so on. Did you cheat on your taxes? How about cheating on your Significant Other? Come on, out with it! After all, you’ve got nothing to hide, right???

If you wouldn’t post your private details in the comments below— and I’m betting that anybody sane wouldn’t– then why in God’s Name do you think it’s OK to give the NSA Cart Blanche to raid those very same details at will, without cause and without even letting you know that you now live in their goldfish-bowl??? I fancy I might be interested in reading that reasoning in the comments here. How’sabout it?

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How’s about another post?

It’s about time I add a little to this blog, if for no other reason than my last post was half a month ago. I never seem to want to write here when I have time, but when I’m on the road I can think of dozens of things to write about. So—

I’ve been given something to think about by other people’s blogs here. Turns out that being divorced and alone is fairly common, enough so that the experience is by no means unwritten about. I’ve been following te writings of a fellow who says he’s not tall enough to ride, or something like that, and of course it’s a sentiment I share since I, too, have seen the ads in the singles columns where the ladies ask for gentlemen who are tall (like, over 6′–at 5’5″ I’ll never make the “tall” selection) financially secure (I never have been that, having to scramble to pay bills and being financially secure can’t ordinarily be said in the same sentence) and handsome (I’ve been told I’m not bad looking, might be handsome– but handsome, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder).

Being a divorced Christian carries its own baggage, if you read the literature you find it hard to believe I could ever date again without committing adultery– how my divorce came about having little to do with it.

In any case, my last divorce — I’ve been through two marriage and divorces, both times to the same woman, the second marriage was a “reconciliation” marriage– my last divorce was memorable. It was enough to make me swear off ever buying another ring, and even dating. I’ve been divorced since November of 2009, and haven’t been out on a proper date since. Not that I wouldn’t like a woman’s company, mind you– but the thought of ever again going through another time like the last one makes me run cold.

Maybe someday I’ll expand on this thought. Maybe not. It depends, if the visitor or two who actually reads this replies I suppose I might be encouraged to expand on this. Otherwise, I’ll drift off onto other thoughts as I get the notion.

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