We Deserve Equality

After being bedridden for the better part of  four days due to this damn stomach virus I have, I feel that I have a lot of catching up to do. I’ll spare you the gory details, but you’ll just have to know that I’m still not feeling well. Which means that this post might be a bit loopy and very short.

That’s it. That’s my whole post.

No, I’ve got a bit more juice left in me.

After miserably rolling over and seeing the date something pinged inside of my brain. I didn’t know what alarm was being triggered, but I knew I would find my answer online. First I checked to make sure my homework for the day was done, and then, when that didn’t yield any results, I came over to wordpress to see if I could find my answer here. Today’s prompt helped me remember.

As much as I wanted to write some long, thought out post about inequality, I fear that my time here is going to brief today. Hopefully no less powerful though.

Inequality is something I have seen a lot of in my life. When I was younger I saw it, but I did not understand it. A few key facts about me are that I am the youngest child and the only girl.  I was treated differently than my brother’s, and I am not sure if it is because of the younger aspect of that previous statement or the fact that I’m a female. That’s a story for another time though.

Inequality in society is based off of unequal opportunities presented to different individuals based off his/her gender, race and ethnicity, as well as social class. Other factors can be involved, but those are some of the main ones seen.

Inequality means that not everyone is being paid the same. That some people out there are being promoted quicker just because they have a different gender, race, or social class. It means that clothing for men is cheaper than clothing for women. In certain states, inequality means that an unstable mother can gain custody of the child over a stable father simply because she is the mother. It means that because of a person’s race they are being persecuted more swiftly and harshly than those around them. There are so many examples of inequality out there in the world, and yet still they remain unseen to a lot of the population.

It’s going to take a lot of people to stand up against inequality. To let people know that we won’t stand to be treated like anything other than people just because the color of our skin is differently, we make less money, and/or because we are of a different gender.

We are all people, we all have the same human rights. I’m tired of inequality saying that that’s not true.

Let’s do what we can for equal rights, because the world deserves equality.

~J. Spade

 

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Toast to You

Exploring the mighty blogosphere can be as scary as it is enlightening. It’s a massive place that houses millions of different blogs, with different writers, styles, and preferences; and that’s wonderful. Maybe you’re wondering how I can find something that is so amazing to be even the slightest bit scary.

The answer to that is easy.

Talent.

Maybe the answer isn’t as easy as I originally thought. It’s not that I am scared of talent, per se. The thing that scares me is the lingering fear that I will not match up to aforementioned talent. As often as I have been told not to compare myself to others, it’s one of those ‘old habits’ kicks and their death is hard.

But this post isn’t about me. Shocking, I know. This post is about you, those of you who will and who won’t read this post. It’s meant for you, I’m just the messenger here.

Yesterday I spent a good chunk of the day browsing unknown blogs and discovering new people to be in awe over. Photography blogs, poetry blogs, blogs with cats, music, and food. All different types of blogs passed in front of my eyes, and I gobbled it all up like the proverbial turkey it was.

Come the end of my perusing, I felt empty. The fact of the matter remained that as much as I took from the posts and people I had just seen, I had given nothing back. Rather selfish if you ask me. Then it occurred to me that I could at least let the blogger know that I enjoyed their post, a small price to pay for devouring the glimpse they had given me into their life.

So I commented. I liked. And I followed. I handed them out like candy to Trick-or-Treater’s and I regret nothing. In fact, I plan to do it again. It’s a fulfilling task that makes me and the recipients feel better, and I like that feeling.

We could all do a little better to put a smile on the face of those we admire. A simple ‘like’ can do that, and all it takes is a click of a button.

Plus, looking at other blogs is a learning experience. I, for one, learned that my blog needs work. Not that I already didn’t know that, but a certain blogger helped me to realize I needed more cats on my blog. Because cats. For that I can’t thank her enough for the unintentional insight she gave me.

And now, cats.

DSC_0289Mouse posing for the camera.
DSC_0299
Louis objecting to having his picture taken.

 ~J. Spade

Deal Breaker

If you had to come up with one question, the answer to which would determine whether or not you could be friends with a person you’ve just met, what would it be? What would the right answer be?


 

We all have those relationship “deal breakers” that sometimes spring out of nowhere. Figuring out the facet of a potential friends personality is something that can save a lot of heartbreak early on.

As contrived as it sounds, I’d like to think that I can be friends with anyone, but we all know the truth for what it is. There are simply people out there who are so incompatible that being around them is torture. That sounds horrible, but it’s true.

My question would probably be somewhat basic, and while I do not know of the question I could always resort to, I do know it would be something along the lines of: What do you think of so-and-so? Whether ‘so-and-so’ references an object or a person, that question will often speak a lot about the person answering.

I have had too many friends trash talk people who didn’t deserve it, and it’s beginning to unnerve me how often it happens. The answer to that question could be my deal-breaker; because if you’re going to treat that person in a bad way behind their back, who is to say that the same will not be done to me?

~J. Spade

This Is Me

You’re about to enter a room full of strangers, where you will have exactly four minutes to tell a story that would convey who you really are. What’s your story?


 

I, like I am sure many of you, am the type of person who flounders when the conversation switches to anything along the lines of ‘tell me about yourself’. In brief, every exciting moment of my life seems to vanish the second someone questions me about it. Years could pass by since I last saw a person, and the instant the question ‘what’s new with you’ comes into the conversation I would still undoubtedly respond with ‘nothing’.

Throw me in a room full of strangers where I am forced to tell my story in four minutes, and you might as well have thrown me to the proverbial wolves. I will choke. It’s my nature.

If I’m given time to prepare, the results might be a bit different. After some prep, the story I would weave in my four minute time span would be one of growth.

“I have never been known as a positive person,” I would say to the masses. A deep breath would follow, as I amped myself up for the rest of my speech. “In fact, more often than not, people choose to comment on my dark soul or heart. Friends have even called me an ice queen, because I have a tendency to shut people out with what seems like little to no regard. That’s not really me.”

My eyes would be cast to the side, unwilling to face the people I am about to bare my soul to. “In fact, telling you about me isn’t something I’m prone to do. I may not cry as freely as those around me, but that doesn’t mean I don’t feel. Maybe I’ve avoided talking to a friend a time or two, but that has nothing to do with a disinterest in them. It’s all a mechanism of fear. Hiding how I feel is my mode of operation; it’s how I’ve learned to survive. The thick skin I’ve created is a wall, because only I can decide who is let in.”

As I continue, my story would include snippets of who I was and how far I’ve come. It would hold anecdotes about how I’m still growing and learning every day. The end would be a reflection of the beginning, as I state: “And it’s only when a person begins to see those little things about me, that they realize I’m not as dark as they once thought.”

~J. Spade

 

Changing Seasons

Changing colors, dropping temperatures, pumpkin spice lattes: do these mainstays of Fall fill your heart with warmth — or with dread?


Seasons change. It is a fact of nature that we cannot escape, and while some people might dread some of the oncoming seasons more than those around them, there are always people who enjoy every little facet of the shifts in weather. Fall is popular, especially so in the Northwestern part of the United States.

As for my personal preference, I’m not really sure what it is; but I have come to the realization that I am either constantly changing or I happen to really love all seasons. It seems that each time a season ends I get a little sad, but I’m always so ecstatic for the oncoming season that I don’t dwell on it for too long.

Right now, I am really excited for the fall season to come around. Sweaters, boots, layers, and orange/brown hues of everything. It all sounds simply wonderful, and right now in my life I feel like that little bit of wonder can take away the pain of real life. I know that it won’t really, Fall is no magic cure, but in the moment I can pretend that it can mend all that is broken around me.

Hopefully, my moment of positive naivete can act as a healing balm to those that are ill in my life.

~J. Spade

Secondhand

Clothes and toys, recipes and jokes, advice and prejudice: we all have to handle all sorts of hand-me-downs every day. Tell us about some of the meaningful hand-me-downs in your life.


As the youngest child I spent a lot of my time dealing with hand-me-downs. Toys, books, clothes, and even sports seemed to belong to someone else before it came to me. At the time it really annoyed me. I was the only girl amongst my parents children, it didn’t make sense to me how my mother kept happening across used clothing for girls that were conveniently in my size. Of course, I had plenty of older cousins that helped out with her endeavor to keep me clothed in articles that were well past the point of worn.

Being as young as I was I just didn’t understand. Why did my brothers receive new things when I never did? Was it because my parents loved them more than me? Questions filled my brain and stuck in my mind, making me more confused than I had any right to be. Then one day all of that washed away. All pieces of hand-me-downs that were given to me were not merely objects that had previous owners, they had been cared for and loved in such a way that shouldn’t be looked down upon. The objects had lived, had stories of their own. That was beautiful, that was new, and the fact that I could create my own stories to go right along with the previous ones was an incredible feeling.

Once I had realized that, I ended up being happy with the things that I had. I was able to appreciate the value of them, and even to this day I still admire the quality of life found in hand-me-downs. That’s part of the reason I donate the stuff that I have outgrown, because maybe, just maybe, someone will have a place for that material in their own life.

 

~J. Spade

Royalty

A second #RoyalBaby will soon be joining the Windsors in England. Given the choice, would you rather be heir to the throne, or the (probably) off-the-hook sibling?


 

Royalty comes at a price, and being the heir to the throne puts that much more at stake. At some point or another I am sure that we have all dreamed of what it would be like to be royalty, but it’s very rare to put thought into how different we would be if this were the case.

If I was royalty of any kind, I believe that I would rather be the off-the-hook sibling. I’ve always had a strange fascination with Victorian and Renaissance books that depict the life of royalty, and I have to say the heir never seems all that thrilled. It is the sibling who is essentially unimportant that gets the carefree attitude.

While it is fun to imagine being Queen or King, I would much rather live my life as a princess or a duchess. That way I can still do most of the stuff that I wanted to do without being nagged constantly.

~J. Spade