Friday, July 22, 2016

Please Dont Justify The Hate

Because Im gonna be busy for a while, from time to time Ive decided to have guest bloggers. Today I have my first guest blogger, Melissa Malcolm, who will share some of her thoughts and experiences on some very important subjects.

Melissa Malcolm is queer woman of color who has been sharing her experiences of homophobia and racism throughout social media.

Please Dont Justify the Hate, by Melissa Malcom


1. There are many wonderful Police Officers and other Law Enforcement Professionals. They go to work and risk their lives to help everyone. I have personally seen some wonderful Police Officers who have gone above and beyond their call of duty. They work with youth and families to create safe communities . The media will never highlight these individuals . The Media will only show what people will watch because just like everyone else ,they are a business looking to make money. Killing Police Officers because of the actions of other Police Officers is not justified and should not be condoned. #Pleasedontjustifythehate

2. There is a serious issue throughout this country with Young Black Men being killed at the hands of law enforcement. This has resulted in the Black Lives Matters Movement. Many people feel that it is racist to focus to say only one life matters. The BLM is not say only one life matters.  It is trying to bring attention to situation that needs to be fixed. For example , if someone is drowning in a pool , you would say "so and so is drowning" lets help them. This does not mean the rest of the people in the pool don't matter.  During the Holocaust millions of Jews perished in horrific ways. Before the Jews , people with special needs and other groups were killed at Hitlers Command. Remembering and honoring those who were Jewish and lost their lives and were survivors is not diminishing the other lives lost. It is saying to everyone that this act was wrong and we stand with you. Also people of ALL races march ,protest and get petitions signed in honor of Black Lives Matter. Those use BLM as a reason to  harm and kill others do not represent the movement they represent hate.

3. I have noticed an alarming trend in regards to Social Media. People have gotten what I like to call " Media Muscles". They like to say unkind,homophobic, prejudiced , racist and demeaning things about other people. They hide behind their devices like the KKK hides behind their hoods. I am asking all my family and friends to #thinkbeforeyoupost. The words you say and share can cause someone to want to kill  themselves.  Tyler Perry once said (quoting his grandmother) " Take God with you .....and wherever you can't take God don't Go.....". I would also add " Take Kindness with you and wherever you can't take Kindness don't go". #Pleasedontjustifythehate

4. I am a person of color and every day I am targeting because of my race. I am targeted by my "own people" as much as I am targeted by those who think I am another race. I have recently heard several friends tell me that racism doesn't exist anymore or that it is thing of the "deep south". I am here to tell you that racism does exist and it effects my life each and every day. I realize that it is easy for someone to deny something that they don't experience or understand. If you would like to discuss this with me , I am a open book.  #Pleasedontjustifythehate

Thank-you for reading ! If you wish to comment , feel free but please keep the tone respectful and remember #Pleasedontjustifythehate

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

My Engagement Story

Its really late, and I would like to be asleep right now, but I made a promise I would blog and tell you all the story about how I got engaged, and I know I wont sleep tonight unless I keep it so here goes...

 I really wish I could tell this when I was in the perfect mood, when I wasn't physically and emotionally exhausted from an exciting and emotional weekend and first day of the week back at work. But, lets face it, I got a lot going on right now, so I'm probably not ever going to be in the perfect place to write this- I will either be getting a million things done, talking to my fiancee and or her family/ my friends etc. so you will just have to enjoy this less than perfect tail of a really awesome day in my life.

Day? did I say day?  Rome wasn't built in a day, and an engagement doesn't happen in a day either. I met Brandi a year ago today. Exactly.  We "met" on a dating app called Plenty of Fish. but I had lovingly nick named it Piece of Fish, because my luck in meeting people on dating sites was over all, pretty crap. we talked briefly via text, and I had tickets to a Reign game so she was going to be my date, but she wanted to meet first somewhere else, so she decided to come over here, and we could maybe go to lavender festival. I screen dates extensively, and she checked out.  I also had decided to get my hair cut that day, and I had a lot of hair, so it took way longer than normal and I was three hours late for our date. I texted her well in advance and she kindly still came over, a little later for me, so that i could finish my hair cut.  Even with the delay, i was an additional hour late, but it was worth it, I looked and felt awesome. Cutting my hair made me feel like myself, so I was really confident.

 I must say, that I didn't think that first date was going to go anywhere before it happend. It never did before that, so why would it now?  But Brandi and I clicked instantly. I found in her someone that was honest, that had a good heart, deep faith,  and that I instinctively felt I could trust.  we started dating pretty much that moment we met. We had some ups and downs and even a "break"  along the way, but each hiccup only brought us closer together and deepened our trust for one another.

fast forward a year, and I am meeting her and her daughter to go to yet another Seattle Reign game. They are the best, and I have season tickets so we go together as often as I can persuade Brandi and anyone else to join me.  So last Saturday there was a 7 PM game. I volunteer some weeks to help the Reign with set up or handing out programs.  This week I volunteered to help set up their retail store at the game, which is set up and taken down before each game.   Brandi and her daughter came early and went to a bite of Seattle (or so I thought)  while I worked at the stadium. We got there just before 11 AM I gave Brandi her anniversary present ( an autographed shirt of her favorite soccer player.) and then had to say goodbye for a few hours.

 Side Note: Its important to note at this point in the story, that for the past two weeks I myself have been thinking of proposing. I had two really cool Ideas that I had come up with and had ran passed a multitude of friends- 1- I was going to use my connections at the Reign and  surprise her while she was getting a photo with her very favorite player, and 2- I was thinking of  asking her at the highland games in a couple weeks. I hand paint family crests, so I was going to paint one with her families crest, and Then I was going to show it to her, and give her the one with the Marquardt crest, and ask her if she "would do me the honor of making our engagement official as we pursue the unification of our two ancient and noble house holds"  but that didn't happen because....

  While I was working in the stadium, Brandi  and  (to protect the young and so forth I will just call her A), Brandi and A walked all the way down to Pike Place market, Found rings, Picked the one they thought was best, Brandi the ring, and A the bag it went in. And using some wizard skills I didn't know of, Brandi guessed my ring size (for my right hand) correctly based off how it fit her when she tried on my Claudah(sp?) ring.   (one small problem later, when we discovered my left hand ring finger is at least a size smaller than the right. who knew?)

 any way, so they walk all the way down there, and all the way back with all their bags and stuff because they were coming to stay at my house after the game, and had been dropped off because of car problems. So that is a long way for a 9 year old to walk, especaily with stuff. So A was a little tired and grumpy by the time  they got back. This  combined with  Brandi not wanting to do a big public thing, and wanting to have my furbaby present so it was a full family deal- waited all the way until 11 pm that evening when we got home from the game. completely surprised me, and popped out a lovely ring and asked me if i would marry her. Obviously, we were on the same page, and I said  "what! you beat me to it!!!!  yes."  Then  I told her about my ploting and gave her my family crest.

So for those who keep asking about the date:

We are planning to wait for about a year, because we have to figure out where we are going to live, and a ton of other stuff first. I'm trying to buy a house, but the market is crazy right now, so that must be sorted before we can even begin to worry about a wedding, it may take a while.  Its kind of a big deal to bring a family together, and especially one that already comes with  a 9 year old and a really crazy also 9 year old Jack Russell, so for those wanting a date, you are going to have to be patient, we will let you know when we have done all the stuff we have to do before we can worry about that.  I hope this takes care of all your questions and things that you want to know,  because I really need to go to bed now.

 Thanks again for all the love and support.  It has meant a lot to us already that so many of our friends are expressing love and not giving us heaps of hurt and rejection. We have already each faced some of that, even today, but it was far far out weighed by love and support and that means the world to us. This was a day and a weekend that made me so extreemely happy, and the only thing that has dampened it at all is knowing that some people that I really care about don't feel happy with me, but I recognize I can't change that,  All I can do is continue on in this journey of love, and rejoice in the many many friends and family that are celebrating with us.  Thank you all so much.