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12 August 2018 @ 11:35 am
To my online raccoon buddy, and partner in this beautiful Rainbow Ark, xedrik!
01 August 2018 @ 10:32 am
It's kind of amazing what we're seeing--things that we thought were settled and put to bed are now in question once again.

Marriage equality in all 50, and now there's some big moves to overturn Federal law and put it back to the States. Roe v. Wade is even in question.

It's scary, it's infuriating, but possibly above all, it can be discouraging when advances are so official and palpable, but then you realize it can all change when a consensus of people decide something should be so, and elected officials who represent their constituents who voted them into office, propose the laws to reflect the will of their people.

But it's important to remember that we're not seeing consensus here. What we're seeing is a hateful, bigoted vocal few who are making more noise than all the rest of us, trying to convince us and themselves that they speak for the majority. They don't.

The ones who were always bigoted, always hateful, but were too cowardly to show it, now find the permission they've been looking for from Trump to act out. The person that 20 months ago would have simply glared at a Black driver, now openly uses the "n" word against them even when on video. The ones who a year an a half ago, would peer through the curtains at the Black person walking by, now calls the police on them and makes up stories of assault to get them arrested. Nazi tags spray-painted on houses, Anti-Jew and Anti-gay rhetoric is thrown around out loud, Evangelicals like Falwell urging Trump to get closer to Putin who himself is a murderous dictator. Now 40% of Republicans polled say they're okay with Russia cyber-attacking the elections this November if it helps to keep Republican lawmakers in power.

I could go on for pages, but you've seen the news too and know what's going on. These might seem like dark times for all of us. I'm not pretending to have any wise counsel or solutions, but I just want to use this opportunity to remind that there are things which have been and will continue to be consistent through all of this. We have our friends. There is this Ark, such as it is anymore. There's still good in the world, and there is still justice. As long as we hope for better days to return, they will return. Hope has done more to sustain life than any act of ignorant bigotry, or fear-induced act of violence.

Remember that this "whole world" isn't going crazy, but that it's just a very noisy minority which is a dead-end if followed. We need to of course be vigilant and not simply ignore or be blind-sided. But in the larger scheme of things, life goes on, good will prevail. The Arc of the Moral Universe Is Long, But It Bends Toward Justice.

Vote. Vote like your life depends on it November 6th. Vote in numbers too big to manipulate. Make sure you're registered. Vote early, then provide transportation to others so they can vote on election day.
14 June 2018 @ 09:51 am
21 years ago today, I was married to my Lovely Tigress, Renee, in an outdoor ceremony, under an impromptu tent because of a light rain, in the presence of our families and close friends.
09 May 2018 @ 01:23 pm
I was scared we weren't going to get spring, but that it was going to go from winter right into summer. But at least here in Reston Virginia, it is a beautiful spring day out there, currently 78° at near the hottest part of the day.

My workmate is out all week, so I'm here in this big room all by myself. I had to work this past Saturday on a huge proposal, and there's been a good amount of work since then that's needed my expertise.

I'll be staying in town again tonight, sleeping on the couch of the same terrific red panda who lives and works all within a mile and a half of here. I stopped by Martin's on the way to work to pick up muffins for us. His big black kitty doesn't care much for muffin day. He's more into bagel day, because that means he gets his small ration of cream cheese--his reward for being a cat.

I just mailed out Mother's Day cards this morning on the way to work. The next time Renee and I are able to visit the parental units is Father's Day weekend in the middle of June.

How has your days been? Keeping it together lately?
02 April 2018 @ 05:08 am
(cross-posted from Rainbow Ark FA) I hope everyone had a nice holiday weekend with family or friends. We got back home after 9 last night.

It was our first full night away from home since we got our new kitty, Kiki, but she did well. It looks like the new automatic kibble dispenser worked just fine. We were a little worried because once we were testing it a week ago, it took her no time to figure out how to stick her paw up the chute and turn the flippers to get more food to drop. But it looks as though she didn't cheat too much while we were away.

We stayed with Renee's parents this time, and it was good to see everyone again. After breakfast yesterday morning, we got in the car to see my parents up the road. They're doing well for their age. Dad is the caregiver for my mom, but he's hyper aware of his own health, hoping to take care of her for as long as he is able, but he's of course worried about her if something were to happen to him. I wish we didn't live 150 miles away, and we have a mortgage we're stuck with -- possibly no longer underwater anymore, but up here near northern Virginia is where my job is, and it my age, it's not like I could just relocate and find any one of a dozen places hiring 59 year olds.

Life is complicated at times. It's nothing new for many of you too. We just do what we can and try to encourage discussion about difficult decisions about things while there is opportunity to discuss.

So yeah, at Renee's we caught up with birthdays, had a nice meal prepared by her mom and everyone took some food home with them. Now early Monday morning, I'm getting ready for work. It's going to be a stay-over night tonight because of my long commute. There's a wonderful Panda fur who lives and works just up the street from where I work, who has a comfy couch. I just bring muffins or bagels to share and he's good. It's also a joy to watch his fursuit come together as he has time in the evenings to work on it.

Cheers everyone. Be good.
14 March 2018 @ 09:06 pm
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (CNN)With the Lunar New Year round the corner, Chinese around the world are preparing to welcome the Year of the Dog.
But in Malaysia, where people of ethnic Chinese descent make up almost a quarter of the population, images of the dog have been omitted from Lunar New Year decorations and merchandise for fear of offending the country's Muslim majority.


Nothing against Muslims, just against people who are offended a little too easily.
18 January 2018 @ 12:44 pm
Hello friends. I hope every one of you are enduring and finding times of rest and renewal in life.

I've been thinking and wondering lately about how good of an ally I can continue to be for those here who have belief in God or gods, or who are religious, or spiritual, or who live by faith. Sometimes I wonder if my mere presence here might seem to be a threat to the combined Christian and LGBT safe zone that we established here in early 2004, inviting everyone to live authentically and believe how they have chosen without trying to give up one aspect or the other.

It feels important for me to say that I will never ridicule someone here for their faith. I know first hand and remember how real it all seems, and how much of an individual's life that it all can become: the feeling when you pray, or worship in song, or receive what appears to be an answer to prayer--I've had many instances. I'm not trying to disprove any of that. I received Jesus as my Lord and Savior in the mid 70's and for decades after, I was very much a believer with everything the term entails and attended a variety of different churches and teachings including Methodist, Assembly Of God, non-denominational word of faith churches, Foursquare, and others.

From my new perspective after religion, While remembering what I used to believe, there are aspects that I wish more religious people would consider as they go through life.

Firstly, I wish religious folk would consider the possibility that maybe this life we have right now is maybe all that we have, and not simply a weigh station on our way to eternity. It's okay to believe there's a Heaven, or reincarnation, or some other form of afterlife as your faith teaches, as long as you realize we don't actually have any physical evidence here that one exists in the exact way that your religious faith says it does. It might, but don't let the 'might be' prevent you from living the life you have, in the moment, at the present time, to the very fullest that you're able.

Secondly, learn to forgive--not in the sense of someone who hurt you should be free to hurt you again. This isn't about unearned trust or not protecting yourself from an abusive person. I mean in terms of letting go of your anger. It's been said that holding a grudge is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die. That constant seething you feel toward the other is only hurting you. Don't let them have that control over your life and steal your joy--and as expressed in the paragraph before, life is finite and may be all we have.

There is probably a third, fourth, and fifth, but those can be for another time, or please add your own in the comments here for our benefit.
23 December 2017 @ 10:07 am
Joyous Yule, Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays.

I'm off work until the 2nd. Renee is also off work but due to a slow drip of layoffs in her company which finally caught up with her a little over a week ago. She'll be receiving unemployment and she has a couple of leads, but for right now we're just together to enjoy the Holidays.

We went out and saw Star Wars yesterday, then made a donation of items to Goodwill. We'll finish decorating the tree today. On Christmas, we'll put a nice roast in the crock pot, and probably have a cozy fire with a tiny bit of snow in the forecast.

We're both still feeling some effects of not having our precious Bijoux with us at this time. We know it won't be long before we adopt again. We didn't realize until after she was gone, how much our little kitty made this feel like a family.

Let's all hope for a better year in 2018. I know this one's been a rough one for many.

02 December 2017 @ 09:19 am
We're taking our beloved cat, Bijoux in to a vet in 15 minutes from now to help her pass in peace. A week ago she was diagnosed with gastric lymphoma and were told she may have from 4 to at most 8 weeks. But with her eating a little less every day and for the first time this morning, unable to take the pill pocket which held her daily anti-nausea med, and beginning last night, noticing her using new muscles to help her breathe, it's time, before she really becomes uncomfortable.

We had a second appointment we were hoping would work out, for a person to come to our home on Monday at 2PM, to where she could pass in familiar surroundings. But to make her wait until then would do more for us than it would for her. So we're going with the first option, which means putting her back in the carrier that I really didn't want to use again, and put her in the car again for a 30 mile trek. But hopefully everything will work out and it won't be too stressful.

All assembled who have pets, give them an extra hug or scritch from me today and tell them how much you love them. Don't forsake the many good opportunities you have to spend quality time together.
19 November 2017 @ 01:21 pm
fennec turkey
18 November 2017 @ 08:25 pm
Hey critters and crew. I just wanted to check in since it had been awhile, and with a hope that you're all keeping warm as seasonal temperatures continue to fall with winter approaching.

I had seen a tweet go by as a warning to those attending MFF this year, that there is a particularly nasty form of walking pneumonia in and around Chicago. It might be a good time now to take measures to boost your immune system with whatever you normally do. It's never too late to get a flu shot too. Renee and I have ours. It's usually free if you work it right with your insurance, and/or in-store offers from places like Target or CVS. Just wanted to mention that.

Looking at the state of our Union, we're all hoping that every single safeguard put into place to protect the liberties of LGBT people by the Obama administration isn't going to be completely undone by the current mess. I've been thinking about how safe everything felt just 18 or so months ago, and the fear is that reversal of the advances we've been enjoying are going to force many back into the closet just to keep jobs or to keep from being harassed or worse, from neighbors or random people. But the progressive candidates who were recently elected shows that not all ground will be lost as there has been a new and strengthening fight against trumpism around the country. I think about many of you and I wonder how you're doing. I know a lot of times the best defense is in just going about your lives and not giving the darkness space in your life, having faith in that long arc of justice described by MLK.

I hope you all have a safe and fun-filled holiday season. Check in and let us know how you're doing.
27 October 2017 @ 12:03 pm

I think we all could use a song like this once in a while.
Current Mood: calmcalm
14 October 2017 @ 11:02 am
So yeah, trumpeta attended and apparently us LGBT+ peoples aren't shit to him and his basket of deplorables. This country used to be cool because it was becoming more inclusive. Now it's cool to be a fuckin' asshole to your fellow man and hide behind "religion". I'm sick and tired of the bullshit, and I bet all of you are as well.

He recently eliminated the subsidies for ACA insurers - like a savage, I might add. That'll leave lots of people at a disadvantage. Not to mention that's gonna destablize the healthcare infrastructure moreso than it already was. Possibly to the point of collapse, but I digress as that's another topic entirely.

What more can he do to make everyone's life (the ones not in his little basket, of course) shit? Just wait until next week I guess. It seems that every week he pulls some crap that manages to rent the collective sanity of this country more and more. This tyrant is after our asses. What the hell are we gonna do about it?

Remember ACT UP's famous chant? "Silence equals death!" So what is there to do? I've heard as recently as when I was 17, a little while ago, haha. That claims were made that we LGBT+ people only made up 1-2% of the population, but I think that's ridiculous, we're everywhere! Let's add in our allies, suddenly we have even more people on our side.

More Americans now more support same-sex marriage, and SCOTUS made that a grand reality. Will that change with the new justice what's-his-face? Perhaps. We can't let ourselves be treated like second-class citizens. We have to do something productive and positive. We can't let trumpeta and his cronies take away our humanity piece-by-piece.

And please don't attack me over this. I'm just some guy who just doesn't want to be shoved back into the closet. Closets are for clothes, not people.
05 October 2017 @ 02:08 pm

"Prayer For Danny is a touching song about a young man abandoned by his family and friends. It's just a prayer that he'll hang onto his best friend despite the adversity. Many thanks to Chris & Lance"

Inspired by the coming-of-age story of Daniel - the main character of Associated Student Bodies - this song is by Hali, from 2001. Downloaded from a snapshot of FMF (12/10/2008) via archive.org.
Current Mood: contentcontent