Tag Archives: cliche’

A. . . Searching Mood

28 May

For lack of better descriptor.  I guess it would be called searching.

I feel like I am in between two places. Gripping the edge of negativity and unhappiness with white knuckles, but unable to take the frightful leap of faith over to happiness and–dare I say it–optimism.  No, not optimism–too trite.  I have never been the type of person to utter the word “glorious,” and am skeptical with blind optimism in that same way.  I find it phony.  No one is happy ALL the time, and I can’t help but feel optimism just means hiding feelings, ignoring problems, and putting on a front.  Happiness and contentment would be OK with me.  Yeah, contentment, that’s the one.  I know there will be challenges and struggles, but I want to deal gracefully.

My mentality reminds me very much of the Tahoe Ropes Course we went to for a Natural Helpers Club team-building exercise. The course was fairly simple, and the one peril in particular that sticks with me goes like this:  Platform #1, a small jump to platform #2. But the key was that the space was just big enough that it couldn’t be a large step–you HAD to jump across. There was nothing in between platform 1 & 2 to hang on to. You had to have faith and jump over. If it was on the ground, it would be nothing.  From the forest floor, it looked easy–too easy. Laughably easy–how much had we paid to take a phony little jump like that??? Once you climbed far, far up in the trees (10 feet? 80 feet?) I have no idea how high–does the height matter, anyway? High enough that the tiny four foot jump looked like a chasm.  The higher up you are, the greater the distance seems.  And isn’t it funny that no matter what the weather, it always feels windy if you’re elevated enough?  I swear I could feel those tiny, frail platforms swaying.

It was high enough that my survival instict kicked in, adrealine pumped through my heart causing my limbs to shake. I tried to barter with the course worker to extend their hand to me and help me across. Something I would normally be too embarrassed for. And they said no. That was the whole point. You had to have faith and take a leap, risking a fall that long, long way back to the ground.

That’s the way I feel now.  And wouldn’t it be so much easier to step back into the middle of platform 1, hug the tree trunk for safety, and just stay?  The jump over to platform 2/progress just feels so far. . .  But like that day back in seventh grade, I just have to DO it.  Because I know I am strong enough.  Somewhere inside I realize I have the strength, and it’s not about leaping capability anyway.  It’s about mental strength.  The whole thing is a test of mental strength.

And I am strong enough to conquer my body’s natural instincts of staying with the known out of fear only.  So there you have it.  *insert cliche motivational/inspirational quotes here*

Gender Roles [Anti-Valentine’s #4]

6 Feb

Valentine’s Day keeps us entrenched in our gender roles.  Society has come so far since the days of the 1950s when women had no other option than to be housewives and mothers while men were forced to carry the burden of earning the family income alone.  Why, I ask loudly and repeatedly, do we continue to constrict ourselves to these unfair and unrealistic ideals?  We know by now who established these gender guidelines–men in power with the help of the all-encompassing media influence.  The question is:  Why do we continue to marginalize ourselves by relishing traditions that pigeonhole us to these tired gender generalizations?  As a society we should be more terrestrial in our expectations.  No one should be forced to conform to antediluvian notions of what gender-characteristics are socially-correct.

Valentine’s Day is a reminder of the narrow expectation of what the sexes ought to be.  There is no room to be Leslie 3down-to-Earth:  Women are passive in this day.  They sit back and wait for the man to make romantic plans, wonder and wish about what the man will present her as a gift, and lie back for a sexual encounter at the end of the night.  Men, on the contrary, are supposed to take action.  Nothing should be commonplace on February 14.   They best plan the best, most romantic, spectacular date possible.  Men are also expected to lavish their little lady with meaningless (but costly) gifts to impart the message his woman is still desirable to him.  Finally, the man should perform like a lissome stallion in the bedroom at the end of the night.

I think it’s humorous that these antiquated values are so deeply entrenched in our psyche that we think we OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWANT to uphold these traditions.  As a country, we need to get in touch with more Earthbound expectations, especially when it comes to holidays.  Our patriarchal society is so pervasive that it seems presently it’s women who insist on keeping Valentine’s Day alive.  Refer to my other anti-Valentine’s blogs for examples–there are many.

The way I see it, Valentine’s Day actually takes AWAY from romance.  Maybe if we were more terrene in our gestures it would actually be romantic.  I’m pretty impressed when someone scrapes ice off my windshield on a cold morning, springs for Starbucks, or just looks at me lovingly.  All the Valentine’s Day traditions are tired and overdone.  No thought goes into clichés–you just repeat (what everyone else has already thought up) year after year.  It would be MUCH more romantic to think of your own sublunary traditions as a couple and practice them randomly throughout the year instead of on one day when tradition tells you that you have to.

Mother JonesInstead of embracing such silliness, isn’t it time we transcended gender?  Who wants to live by some strict guideline that isn’t even our own generation’s ideology?  These obsolete ideals are hardly even reasonable in our current fast-paced, work-driven society.  Tellurian love gestures are so much more practical and amazing in the long-run (not to mention more affordable).  Wouldn’t it be more progressive and meaningful to get away from the stubborn expectations of Valentine’s Day and do something original and non-cliché’?  So, as usual on principle I will not be celebrating Valentine’s Day–and I suggest you boycott it as well.

Enhanced by Zemanta