Wednesday, April 24, 2013

A little late for pooting.

About a month or so ago, I got another guinea pig.

Stop rolling your eyes. Stop it right now.


Anyways, I got him from a friend who could no longer keep him and knew I have guinea pigs already. 

I had him for over a week before he even received a name, whereupon my brother Adumb aptly deemed him "Hufflepuff." 

I've taken to calling him Puff for short. 

And don't tell Hiccup or Sniffles this, but..... 

I think he's most people's favorite. 

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Not so high school musical.

Last night I was out with a group of friends from our latest community theatre show, The Crucible. It was karaoke night at the local pub and those of us over 21 (even the few of us that don't actually drink) all met up there after the show.

While we were there, a few of my friends and my boyfriend recognized a friend of theirs and met him with excitement. He then introduced himself to me, whereupon I told him that we have actually met before. Which is true.

Years ago, when I was in eighth grade, he was an assistant in directing the first play I was in, The Hobbit. He was a couple years over me and in high school. When I got to high school, we were even in several shows and musicals together, and I was in a class and shows with his twin sister as well until they graduated. We were also cast in the same show with this same community theatre group last June, but he ended up dropping out. I knew him. I knew his name. I'm pretty sure we're even Facebook friends.

And yet, this man did not know who I was.

When I said that we've met before, albeit years ago, he responded that he is bad with names but good with faces. I told him my last name and he looked at me thoughtfully for a moment then seemed to recognize me in at least some degree (or so he claimed.) he went on to tell how I've changed so much since then, look great, etc etc blah blah blah. To this moment I'm still unsure of how much I believe that he knows who I am at all.

Now as I've pondered this experience, I'm a bit torn. At first I was kind of insulted, at least a little. I knew this guy for years. We have about a hundred mutual friends, no exaggeration. And yet he had no idea who I am.

But if I take him at his word when he said that he simply didn't recognize me because I've changed so much, I have a slightly different reaction.
I mean, thank goodness.
I really have changed a phenomenal amount since high school. At least I certainly hope so. My appearance has changed pretty greatly, not to mention to butt-ton of self confidence I've gained in the years since then. I wouldn't shudder to claim I am a completely different individual than I was at that time.

So on another hand, I was sort of flattered/relieved that he didn't recognize me, due to my changed persona.

That got me thinking. If I could go back to more of the people I knew in high school, would I re-introduce myself to them as a totally new person? Especially if I consider myself to be one. There are definitely people I knew back then that I'm sure will likely have a skewed image of me in their heads for possibly years to come, as that small, shy, awkward, quiet redhead who wore t-shirts and jeans every single day of her life. (Well... Maybe not everything has changed.)
Would I change that image if I could? Should I, given the opportunity? Or should I attempt to embrace that past self, to acknowledge her and reflect and learn from it?

Would you?

And more importantly, does this stuff even matter or is my brain doing its over thinking thing again that it does so very well?

The answer is, all of the above.

Friday, April 12, 2013

An Open Letter Concerning Glee's ep. "Shooting Star"

Last night the television show Glee premiered a new episode entitled "Shooting Star." 

In this episode they detailed the thoughts and feelings surrounding a school shooting type situation. While I do think that parts of this show were well done, and a lot of raw feelings and emotions were well displayed, I had a huge issue with the way they concluded the show. 

**Spoiler Alert for those who have not yet watched it**

In the end, it was the student Becky, who has Down's Syndrome, who had brought her father's gun to school and accidentally fired shots. The reasoning they gave was that she was scared to move on from high school and that no one would protect her in the real world. 

I have a sister who is MID (Mildly Intellectually Disabled) and has been in special ed programs all her life. My family and I have had the opportunity to meet and have involved in our lives many others who share a similar situation or mental disability. 

I wanted to like this episode very badly. And parts of it I certainly did. I loved that there were a lot of poignant moments between the students. But the ending was so upsetting to me that I simply cannot get past it. 

My mother wrote the following open letter to the creators of the show. If you feel the same, I urge you to share this and send it along to them as well, to show that this type of thing is upsetting, hurtful, and even damaging to society. 

As she said herself, 

"Thanks, Glee, for picking on the last segment of society unable to defend themselves.


To The Writers and Producers of GLEE....

It makes me ANGRY and sad that this show who has championed the rights of gay, bisexual, and physically handicapped kids should now show a mentally handicapped Down syndrome child doing something so unlikely. In my personal 26+ years of knowing and being around them, none of them have shown the slightest proclivity to do such a thing. 

Shame. On. GLEE.

Every one of the mildly intellectually disabled (MID) people I have known shy away from such things. 
But, Thanks A Lot, GLEE. Who knows what damage you have inflicted with this? I was watching with my own 26 year old music-loving, choir-singing MID daughter after American Idol was on. Thanks a whole lot--NOT. I'm incredibly sad today and hurt more than I can say....

Her Mom