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Human, Woman, Wife, Mother, Daughter, Sister, Friend & Aspiring Unicorn Breeder

9.27.2012

Butternut Squash Chicken Soup Recipe

I've not posted a recipe in a while, so I thought I'd post this earthy lil' dish that's as tasty as it is filling. It takes a little bit of prep work, but it's totally worth it. Even my kiddos like it! And I'm fairly certain that it's probably even good for you too... Maybe. Ok well, it tastes good anyway!

Butternut Squash Chicken Soup
(makes approximately 10 servings)

1 large butternut squash
2 large carrots (peeled)
2 apples (peeled & cored) ~ I use granny smith
1/2 large yellow onion
1 lbs boneless/skinless chicken
1 tbsp minced garlic
Approx. 2 tbsp Olive oil
6 cups vegetable or chicken broth
1 tbsp cinnamon
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp ginger
1 cup almond milk
Parmesan cheese

Brush the squash and carrots with olive oil and roast in the oven at 400 degrees ~ (50 mins if squash is cut in half or 25 mins if it's cubed) *Conserve the butternut squash seeds*

Dice the onion and apple and saute them together in olive oil.  Once softened, set aside.

Using the same pan, cook the garlic & chicken breast until the juices run clear. Dice it up and set aside.

Once squash and carrots are roasted, peel the squash!!

Now it's time to blend everything together ~ (minus the chicken).

Add the squash & carrots, apples & onions, and broth in a blender or food processor to puree everything to a creamy consistency ~ (I have a magic bullet, so I do this part in small batches).

Pour the soup mixture into a large pot, adding the chicken and the spices.

Stir everything together and bring to a boil. Once at a boil, turn it down to a simmer. Finish the soup with the almond almond milk and simmer for 10 more mins.

*While the soup is simmering those last 10 minutes, toast the reserved seeds in the oven for 5-10 mins at 400 degrees. When they're done (golden brown and crunchy), toss them in a bit of salt.*

Ladle the soup into bowls and top with desired amount of Parmesan & toasted seeds. Enjoy!

©Flippa Bird
{Just a note: You can freeze leftover soup for eating later on. Hooray!}
Pic & Recipe By: Me

9.25.2012

Honesty Means I Love You; Indifference Means I Don't Care.


I am, at heart, a survivalist. I've had to be. I've learned through other's actions that I’m the only one who’ll take care of me. Sure, people wax poetic about how they'll always be there for you, and they will be... until it gets too difficult or they have better things to do. The only true exceptions I've found to this are my Mother and Husband. But everyone else? They're so very quick to condemn you for not swooping in to rescue them from the bad situations that they've gotten themselves into, when they themselves wouldn't do the same for you.

You got into debt? Get yourself out of it. You drank yourself blind? Deal with the consequences. You got hooked on pills? Go to rehab. You're stuck in a bad relationship? Get out of it.

I'm a friend, not a fairy godmother. You're a grownup capable of making your own decisions; you’re capable of dealing with the aftermath. So suck it up when you fuck it up. That's what I've had to do.

That's why I won't tell you that I'll always be there for you. I'll tell you that in order to survive I will look out for me and mine, and if I can help you I will do so to the best of my ability. The only caveat being that it doesn't affect me negatively. That's not to say I don't care about the wellbeing of others, because I do. However, when it comes down to it, sometimes I simply care about me more. No, no... I'm not heartless. I'm just honest. I will take a bullet for any child. I’ll jump in front of a train for my husband. I’ll gladly give my last dollar to my mother. I’ll give up any excess in my life to help a person truly in need. I’ll offer moral support to anyone who needs it and I’ll keep a secret forever. That's about it. And I make no qualms about it.

©Flippa Bird
(Honesty means I love you; indifference means I don't care)
Pic By: Me
 




This weeks word is BLIND
http://www.trifectawritingchallenge.com/

9.24.2012

The Job Interview

I went on my first job interview in 8 years today. The last time I interviewed somewhere I ended up getting a job at UPS as an Account Manager, got promoted a couple of times, and then quit after a few years. I've been a stay at home mom ever since. So today I was a little nervous. To wear or not to wear pantyhose? (I wore tights). Fake hair or no fake hair? (Fake hair). I changed my outfit 3 times before finally staying in the one chosen by my always immaculately dressed cousin. I arrived at my interview 10 minutes before the scheduled time. I waited. And I waited. And waited... While I was waiting I had enough time to write a little something:

"Dear Lori the Interviewer:

1. Lose your receptionist or at least have her lose the nose ring and the bad attitude. Your front desk person is the face of your company. If you present a rough, slovenly face or a face that talks about her poor credit score in front of potential employees, it reflects poorly on your company.

2. Skip the paper application for new hires who have already filled out an application online and/or submitted their resume. It's redundant, wasteful, and makes your company appear as if you don't have your processes together. If you need a paper copy, print out the online version.

3. Be on time for your scheduled interviews. I've been waiting for over 45 minutes past my scheduled interview time. If you expect your future/current employees to be on time, you need to lead by example.

Thank you, but no thank you. ~ Flippa Bird"

I had enough time to write this letter twice. (I knew I'd want to blog about it). Anyway, I left it on the table, smiled at the receptionist with poor credit, and walked out. And that's how my first interview in 8 years went. Wheeeee!

©Flippa Bird
(I got all dressed up for that?? Sigh...)
Photo by: Me & Instagram

9.20.2012

A Love Note to My Girl.

I always wanted a daughter. Not that I don't love and adore my sons beyond comprehension, because I do, more than anything. They are two of the brightest suns in my life! Nothing compares to the love a son has for his momma and vice/versa. But I wanted a little person to share things with that I'm not able to share with my boys. Hubby gets that special, secret guy part of raising the boys that I, as a woman, simply don't comprehend and couldn't teach them even if I wanted to. So I wanted a daughter to share my girl stuff with. You know, pass down feminine secrets and rituals, whisper and giggle about things that the males in our family just wouldn't understand.

For me the third time was a charm. She was born the Tuesday before Thanksgiving and has been a perfect jewel in my motherly crown ever since. She is the apple of her Daddy's eye and I can see him melt when her arms go around his neck. She annoys her big brothers to no end, but they love her immensely... even if they won't admit it. Just mention a boy that likes her or a person that's been mean to her and they're ready to beat some arse.

Before I had her I always prayed, "God, please give me a daughter. I promise I won't get mad when she ruins my makeup." She started ruining my makeup at 2 years old. I loved it. I secretly still do. She is my constant companion, always wanting to spend time with me, no matter how mundane the task. Even when her teenage hormones get the best of her and she's angry with me, she'd rather be with me than away from me. She and I giggle about secret girly things. She's comfortable enough to talk to me about anything and everything. We can get lost shopping together for hours. We love watching comedies and chick-flicks together. Starbucks is our special spot. She appreciates the difference between Godiva chocolate and Hershey's. She loves animals even more than I do. She is everything I could have ever asked for in a daughter and then some.

She looks up to me and emulates me... and I look to her and see what I could have been if I had been given the amount love and opportunities we give to her. I feel like she is my reward for all of the horribleness I endured growing up. I see an immensely talented, extremely intelligent, hilariously funny, breathtakingly beautiful, loving and kind girl who I know will grow up to be an absolutely amazing woman. I love her beyond words and I'm so happy and proud to be her mother.

©Flippa Bird
(My 3 babies are so precious to me)
Photo By: Yours Truly

9.18.2012

Her Cluck Ran Out.

Millie sashayed across the yard, her ample bosom swaying to and fro. "These gals really do need me," she thought. “What ever would they do without me?? I give the best advice. I always know everything. They're so lucky they..."


"Millie!!!"


Her profound thoughts on herself were shattered as she turned to see who had so thoughtlessly interrupted. Ugh... It was Birdie. She didn't have time for Birdie; she had much more important things to do... like chatting with Marnie. Some of the other gals called it "gossiping" but it wasn't, really. They simply discussed the happenings of certain people. It wasn't her fault if the gals they discussed were a bunch of hot-messes, (bless their hearts). Like that Birdie. Marnie never liked her, true, but she came in useful when Millie needed something; so Millie kept Birdie in her little circle, if at an arm’s length. What's wrong with wanting to keep useful folk around anyway? Something was always breaking that needed fixing and Old Abe was pretty much useless for anything, except getting aggravated with her. Yes, it was good to have useful people around... so long as they stayed useful.


"Hey!!!! Millllliiiieee!!!"

 
She continued to ignore Birdie's pleas as she went along her way. "That Birdie'" she fumed, "Such a mess... and so rude! She's extremely lucky I decided to be her friend at all!” Even though Birdie was actually decent, and very lovely, Millie would never admit it out loud. So Birdy was nicely proportioned... but she didn't have Millie's ample chest. And so what if Millie's legs were a bit on the scrawny side; at one time she had been the pick of the peck and…


“Milllllliiiiiie!!! Ohmygawd Millie!!! Watch…”

Birdie froze in her tracks as she watched Farmer Jack scoop Millie up and hack her head off. “This chicken’ll make'fer good eatin’ t'night! That big ol’ breast’ll cook up right juicy I’ll bet!” He said to himself as he walked off, Millie’s headless body in his arms.

©Flippa Bird
Photo By: Me
This week's word is: AMPLE (adj.)

9.17.2012

Phase Two

Mmkay, remember a couple of months ago when I set those goals for myself? No?? Well go back and read that post. Anyway, I decided to accomplish a few things by the time I hit 40 which is approximately 2 years away. One of those things is to lose about 50 pounds... and I figure 2 years gives me plenty of time to do that. I've been hitting the gym fairly regularly since I made those goals (sometimes going twice a day). But I didn't want to overwhelm my little self, so I've still been eating whatever I've wanted. Well lemme tell ya... it sucks working that hard and not seeing any physical results. So now that I've gotten into the habit of working out, it's time to tackle the food issue....

Ugh. The food issue.

Look, I love food. Love. Love. Love it. I love the different tastes & textures. I love sweet, salty, savory and everything in between. I love all carbs, veggies, and animals equally. If I could concentrate enough to make love and eat at the same time, I'd be in heaven and would never leave the bedroom (or dining room table). I'm not a sad or stress eater though... in fact those are the only times I can't eat. I've always been my thinnest when I was depressed. But when I'm happy... it's on. And I've been on cloud nine for the past few years (obviously). I'm also a "hey let's eat just because" kinda person. I make excuses to celebrate just so I can eat elaborate, decadent meals. Um yeah, I really need to get this mess under control.

So phase two of revamping my health & body is now under way. I started today. I'm counting those calories; I'm tracking every bite that goes into my chubby little body. I'm making decisions about what passes my lips, instead of just shoveling in whatever tastes good. Do I really want that chocolate covered cheeseburger and deep fried lard fritters... or would an apple do for now? So far the apple is winning. But I gotta say, I don't like doing this. I hate it. I keep reminding myself that I hated exercising at first too... and now I really enjoy it.

I've just got to be leery of a few things that always seems to make me stumble:
1. The "Supportive" Friend. You know the one... "Why are you counting.every.single.calorie?? You look fiiiine! Just eat this gallon of ice cream with me... it's just one gallon. You can go back to counting calories tomorrow." She says this as if she cares, but really she just doesn't want to see you succeed because she knows she never will.
2. Over Indulgent Hubby. He loves me so much. I know he does. But he spoils me.... reallyyyy bad. If I want something bad enough he will give it to me 99.9% of the time. I'm pretty sure if I asked him to build me my very own Taj Mahal, he would. I'm dead serious. That's how much he adores me. So even if I say, "Do not under any circumstances take me to Starbucks" he will still take me if he sees me getting sad over my lack of Starbucks.
3. My Willpower (cough, cough). If I can "just say no" to crack & meth, surely I can do the same with double helpings of cheesy pasta. Right?? But alas my willpower completely disappears when a "supportive" friend is around. Or when over indulgent Hubby gives in. Or when food is involved. Aww shit...

Ok, well y'all wish me luck. I think this phase is gonna be the hardest part for me. Yikes!!!

©Flippa Bird
(I'm so not giving up taco night)
Pic & Dinner By: Me


9.15.2012

Prophetic Dreams

I've always been a believer of prophetic dreams. I think most of the time dreams are just our minds way of clearing all of the emotional debris of the day from our head, but sometimes they serve a greater purpose. I had what I believe to be one last night.

A little background: Our middle son is a good kid, but he's starting to get into the punk/alternative scene. Which is fine with me to a degree. The Hubby and I were both in that scene as teens, so we both understand the allure. However, we both know, that in general, the kids in that scene do a whole lotta stupid shit... and we're not naive enough to think our son will be any exception. Ok, so all of that said, on to my dream last night...

Our son sneaked out of the house and I went looking for him. I found him walking along a deserted road, all alone, in the middle of the night. So I pulled over and told him to get into the car. It was then that I saw a large wolf circling my car. It had been stalking him... and as he was getting into the car it lunged and attacked him, grabbing him by his throat. I grabbed his legs as the wolf tried to pull him further out of the car. This took all of my strength as the wolf was very strong. I knew that if I kept pulling, the wolfs teeth would rip into his throat, killing him, but if I let go it would eat him. I held on tightly anyway, as any mother would. But I knew it was a no win situation. Either way, in the end, I would lose my son. As I started to lose my grip, I cried out... and woke up in a panic.

Now whenever I've had a prophetic dream I'm aware of what it was and what it means the second I wake up. This was no exception. Our son is headed down a path he shouldn't be headed. If I pull too hard, I will lose him. If I do nothing, I will lose him. So what do I do? I will do what my own Mother did. I will tell him my dream.

You see when I was a teenager, I was out of fucking control pretty wild. One day, out of the blue, my Mother asked what my plans were for the weekend. She never asked me what my plans were. She might ask which friend I would be with, but she never directly asked me about my plans. I said, "Nothing. Why?" And then she told me about a dream she had had the night before: I went missing... and was found dead in the mountains... along with the body a blond girl.

My cousin and I met some guys earlier that day... They invited us to go to the mountains and then to the beach with them... My cousin is blond.

Do you have chills yet? I do. I have them to this day.

Needless to say I told my Mom about my real plans, promptly cancelled said plans, and made damn sure I never spoke to or saw those guys again. I believe her dream saved my, and my cousins, life. It scared the shit out of me and caused me to think a little harder about the decisions I made. I'm banking on the same reaction from our son.

©Flippa Bird
(Thank goodness I'm not a zombie...)
Pic by: Me & a Crappy App

9.11.2012

If You're Happy & You Know It...

I believe I've effectively reached adulthood. Sure it's taken almost 38 years, but I feel like I've finally learned how to handle stressful situations without resorting to radical measures: No more cursing, screaming, or punching anyone in the face. No more evil plots to ruin lives or... never mind. I think you get the point.
 
You must understand, I dislike being meek. I hate being wrong. I loathe giving in. But I've reached a place inside of me that needs serenity more than it needs to hang on to an ideal. I've found that giving in to humility actually brings me dignity. I've figured out that sometimes it's easier to set aside my pride in order to maintain peace. I've Buddha'd up my thoughts. I’ve Jesus'd up my soul.  

And It feels good.




9.07.2012

Luce's Story

The Boss walked through the long brightly lit white corridor, passing doors, which when opened, lead into pristine laboratories that were even whiter than the great hall connecting them, if that were possible. And it was possible. Every room was whiter than any earthly white, utterly devoid of all color, and immaculately sterile. He stopped walking and glanced into the windowed door of room 665, observing the beings working there. Beings bent over resplendent counters, examining and studying their latest discoveries through microscopes and telescopes…beings manipulating His latest creations with lasers, probes, and various other shiny instruments of the scientific profession. He thought about his latest creation, an experiment really, and smiled inwardly. It would be His most ambitious undertaking yet. Yet He knew it had the potential to be more wonderful than anything He had done before and more glorious than anything He would do after. He knew that nothing would compare to it. Ever. If He could do it, that is. It would be tricky for certain. Everything was about balance... even the minutest particle out of place and the whole thing would be ruined. Eons of research and experimentation, kaput. He frowned. He couldn't have failure. Besides, He had constructed entire universes, and filled their intricate solar systems with a dazzling array of different energies. He had created soft, delicate beings in an assortment of shapes and sizes. He had just not combined them all together before... not all at one time anyway. Yes, this would be tricky. But He was more than confident that it could be done.

He continued walking then, the hard soles of his shoes echoing loudly down the hall, the curt sound of his steps bouncing off the smoothly curved walls and ceiling, and back into his ears. He turned a corner and, in fourteen short steps, arrived at the end of a hallway and to his destination: His office. He walked in slowly, traversed the vast room, and sat down in the red leather wingback chair behind his glossy desk. Once situated, he looked at his waiting appointment and smiled.

Luce sat in a plush club chair near the large office window; a window which would more accurately be described as a massive wall of crystal clear glass, framed in eight sections of highly polished silver beams, that gleamed violently, even in the dimmed lighting of the office. The office was one of the only rooms in the building that housed color of any sort. Every other room was a never ending sea of white, save flashes from the silver and black tools being wielded. White floors, white walls, white lights… even white uniforms. But the office was a vast jungle of color, a chaotic spread of hues woven together into a blanket of absolute chromatic balance. Luxurious maroon chaise and club chairs, strewn with lush pillows and throws in every color of the rainbow, and then some, rested upon thick cobalt blue rugs... rugs that dotted the rich mahogany floors. Walls giving the appearance of a moonless night sky held up intricate tapestries in designs and colors that no human eye could possibly ever interpret. Even the sconces on the walls dripped with unearthly jewels and metals, the lights themselves glowing in a soft amber haze.

Luce sat quietly, not acknowledging The Boss, though he felt His presence the moment He stepped through the door. He continued to peer out into the vast darkness of the window, pondering on how he wanted to say what he wanted to say. He sat for a long while, quietly observing the blackness beyond the window, thinking. Several minutes passed before he finally spoke. "Are we really ready to start another experiment?" he inquired to The Boss. "I mean, I don’t intend any disrespect at all. You know that I don’t. I realize it’s been a while since we’ve undertaken anything, and I completely understand that it’s in your nature to do these things... but the last experiment worked so beautifully and we had such amazing results! Perhaps we ought to call it a day? Maybe even... retire? There are so many places we could go, trillions of amazing things to be seen if we had the time. We’ve been at this for such a long, long time…" His sentence trailed off and Luce pondered those words the moment they left his lips: a long, long time. That was an understatement. It had been an eternity, really. But what is time when your time is eternal? Retirement, though...it just sounded so. delightfully. wonderful. There really were so many things to do and see. Things and places they had in fact created. And so much time to do it all… if he were just given the time. He let out a soft sigh and turned to look at The Boss, straight in the face, imploring an answer.

The Boss studied Luce’s face for a second before he replied. He honestly couldn’t help but to pause and absorb the absolute beauty of him every time He looked upon him. What a lovely face it was! He was sure there had never been, and never would be, anything created as remotely as beautiful as the man who sat before him, a man that He Himself had created. There were times when even He wondered how He'd managed to create something so consummately flawless. Luce was, in short, physical perfection. With eyes a shade lighter than a boulder opal, (that sparkled just as brightly when he grinned his roguish grin), and skin & hair the color of honey laced whiskey, Luce was indeed His most divine of creations. Simply perfect. And Luce knew it too. "Luce, my precious, exquisite child…" He began, the corners of His grey eyes crinkling as He smiled softly, "We are scientists. This is what we do. We create, we experiment, we set ideas into motion. And when we complete one thing, we move on to the next. Don’t get complacent, dear child, you’re entirely too intelligent for that… to sit back and do nothing." He paused a moment, a twinkle of fondness in his eyes. "Not to mention, you are far too valuable to me... to leave me to my work alone. Without you to temper my work, it loses its balance. And balance, as you know, is critical in everything that we do. But tell me, my Luce, does this line of work no longer appeal to you? Tell me what it is you would like to do."

Luce thought about that for a moment. Did this line of work appeal to him? Had it ever? "I suppose when you’re The Boss it’s appealing" he thought. He tried to sweep that blasphemous thought from his mind, but he just couldn’t. His was an emotionally exhausting job: Destruction. Luce was in charge of destruction. Not only was he in charge of it, he was the only one responsible for taking care of it. The Boss certainly couldn't do it. He wasn't even capable of doing so, and so he had created someone who could. But, honestly, who the hell likes destroying things all of the time? Sure, maybe blowing up something every now and then was cathartic, but really… all the time? No. He certainly didn’t like it. However, he didn’t want to say this to The Boss, (although he knew that He already knew). "It’s not so much that it doesn’t appeal to me as much as it is that I’m just tired,” he lied and continued, “I’m ready to relax a little. I guess that’s what I’d like to do. Just relax." Well, that was partly true. He glanced down sheepishly at the gleaming wood floor. The Boss had done so much for him: given him a life, a wonderful job that pushed and challenged his mind to its very limits, the perfect place to live, and unconditional love. How could he be this ungrateful? He couldn’t be and he shouldn’t be. He felt so ashamed.

The Boss smiled warmly and Luce’s mood brightened instantly. "My child, I want nothing more than your happiness. To see that divine smile upon your angelic face brings me greater joy than any one thing in all of the universes. If you are tired, we will rest. And when you are ready to begin again, we will begin again... but not until that time." With that said He got up from His desk, walked over to Luce, knelt down, and embraced him. Luce immediately felt the glow of that familiar soothing sensation, which started in his chest where The Boss’ arms embraced him, radiate throughout his torso... into his head and limbs, into his hands and feet, and finally reaching to the very tips of his fingers and toes. His skin exploded in flush of contentment. His insides melted. Luce sighed. "I suppose I have another go in me," he said with a devilish grin. And so it began.

©Flippa Bird
(Two Sides to Every Story)
Photograph By: Your Truly


9.05.2012

Trifecta: Friday Check-In

I'm participating in a blog writing challenge thing in an attempt to better my writing. This is the part where they ask you about yourself and have you post it for the entire group to read. Everyone attempts to come across as unique and profound, but in the end everyone sounds about the same. I've redone this fourteen thousand times in an attempt not to, however, it isn't working. I might even be making myself seem like the most unintelligent bore in the bunch. But isn't that usually the case... sigh. Anyway, this is the last time I redo this thing. I won't second guess myself again. I hope.

What is your name (real or otherwise)?
Flippa Bird

Describe your writing style in three words.
Untrained Unabashed Unpretentious... (even though unabashed sounds kinda pretentious)
How long have you been writing online?
Hmmm... Not quite a year. October of 2011
Which, if any, other writing challenges do you participate in?
Nada, zip, zilch, none.
Describe one way in which you could improve your writing.
Learning proper comma placement would probably be a good thing. I'm positive there are a gazillion other ways I could improve my writing. But since I don't know how to write properly, (I use diarrhea of the brain method), I don't know what it is I need to improve.
What is the best writing advice you’ve ever been given?
I hate to say it, but I think most writers are stuck-up and full of themselves, (myself included... and I'm not even a real writer), and pretty much any writing advice you're given is gonna be cliché. But to be honest I don't think anyone's ever given me writing advice, although I know I could use it.
Who is your favorite author?
Too many to list. I love to read. Period.
How do you make time to write?
I just rush to my computer whenever something pops into my head that's worth jotting down. Sometimes I make it in time and other times it all falls out of my head, (See? Diarrhea of the brain). If someone starts talking to me while I'm writing, then I completely lose everything. Including my temper.
Give us one word we should consider using as a prompt. Remember--it must have a third definition.
3. Splatter (adj): characterized by extreme or excessive gore or violence <a splatter movie>
Direct us to one blog post of yours that we shouldn't miss reading.

I just don't know. Some of them I love and some of them make me think, "What the hell were you thinking when you wrote this?!" But anywho... here's one my cousin likes and she has good taste: Gardening

Baby Kitty says, "Read this blog!"

9.04.2012

On Being Apolitical.

I like to say I'm apolitical. I don't mean to say that I don't care about what goes on in the US. That's not true at all. But I suppose I am in some respects: I loathe the debates that turn hateful, the mudslinging, the anger, the smear campaigns, and the bias that comes with an election season. I can't stand to see people who care about one another turn against each other simply for having a different opinion or point of view. I want to throw my computer every time I read an article that just blatantly attacks a candidate. But I love my country and I vote in every election. I quietly ponder each candidate. I listen to other people's points of view, absorb it in and see where it fits with my own. On occasion I'll even chime in with an opinion. I read different news articles from different sources and try decipher the fact from the fiction, (which is extremely hard to do these days).

I took the time a little while back to read our Declaration of Independence, our Constitution, and our Bill of Rights.... and I do mean I took some time. That stuff is loooong and there's a lot of it! Honestly, I didn't even understand a lot of it. But I kept reading nonetheless. And afterward I thought about what it must have been like to be in our founding father's shoes... the courage it took to break away from everything you know to start anew. The thought and time it took to draft the basic laws that hold our glorious nation together. That's a ridiculously huge undertaking, yet they managed to do a pretty damn good job. I personally think our country is one of the best in the world and we have our founding father's intelligence, thoughts, wisdom, patience, and determination to thank for that. But I feel like we, as a whole, have forgotten all about the blood, sweat, and tears that went into founding our country. I feel like we've lost respect not only for our nation and our constitution, but for the entire electoral process as well... It's like we've turned it into an out of control circus where the monkeys (aka politicians) fling poop everywhere while we the spectators just sit, watching silently, getting hit with a bunch of shit. So here are some things I think we need to keep in mind before we get all riled up during election season:

  • I truly believe that every President tries to do the best he can with what he's given. I don't think anyone goes into office thinking, "Hey I'm going to royally screw up this country and then everyone will hate me... hooray!" Obama isn't a vacationing Antichrist and Dubya' isn't the reason our country is in the toilet. All of this stuff takes time to funk up... it takes time to fix too. One person can't do it alone... it takes a village (or a congress). Ha.
  • ^^ That said, I think a lot of our problems aren't with the sitting Presidents, but with our parties being so divided that no one will give an inch to make things better... even if that inch would gain us all a mile. Pride and greed are two of the biggest downfalls of our country. I really believe that.
  • People in political offices are human. Humans make mistakes. If they're constantly repeated then boot them - vote them out; if they're not then live, learn, and forgive. Bringing mistakes up at every opportunity doesn't make things better, but learning from them does.
  • A person's personal life is just that, personal. Yes, even if they are an elected official some things are just no ones business. It shouldn't matter if you're screwing everyone on the block, as long as you do it on your own time, with your own money, and you're doing your job to the best of your ability. Unless it affects our country/state/city I feel that it should be left alone.
  • Religion and politics don't mix. I don't care what anyone says, they just don't. The first amendment in the Constitution made sure of that. Even Jesus said, "Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's and to God the things that are God's." So I believe this not only as an American, but as a Christian as well. 
  • In general (no getting huffy people, I said in general) republicans/conservatives need to be a lot more compassionate & less judgemental and democrats/liberals need to not be so open minded that their brains fall out. But everyone, no matter their political affiliation, needs to lose their pride long enough to meet somewhere in the middle for the good of us all.
  • Common sense. Use common sense. Don't vote democrat or republican just because that's what "you are." Don't go along with the majority when it's wrong just because it's popular. Don't not go along with the majority when it's right just because you want to be difficult. Please use common sense. Did I mention common sense? Yep, common sense. I'll say it once more: Use common sense.
  • Open your ears and your mind... and close your mouth. If you're debating politics with someone, then really listen to them. You're not actually listening when you're in close-minded-defensive-mode because you're sitting there thinking of rebuttals instead of taking in what the other person has to say. You also aren't really listening if you're interjecting your own opinions every two seconds. But if you honestly listen, you just might learn something. In the very least you'll come away from it with a much better understanding of the other persons point of view instead of just being angry that you couldn't sway them your way.
  • If you're unhappy about the way things are, do something about it!! Sitting around debating and complaining doesn't accomplish anything.... except to annoy those around you. Worried about the homeless? Volunteer at a shelter. Concerned with the environment? Go green. Don't like a bill? Write your congressman. Take all that energy you expend bitching and put it to good use.
  • Freedom of speech is a wonderful thing! It's one of the awesome things that sets us apart from the rest of the world. But wouldn't it be nice if we tempered that freedom with consideration for other peoples feelings? Just a thought. (Yeah, yeah... I know I need help with that one too).
  • Finally... Show some respect for our President. You may not like the President. You may totally disagree with every thing the President say/does. You may hate the President's guts. You may even think the President is a gigantic cubic zirconia encrusted dildo who is personally bending you over and ass-raping you. But you should always, always be respectful. They have rightfully, though our democratic process, through we the people, earned the most highly regarded position as the leader of our great country. So regardless of your personal feelings, be respectful toward the leader of our country. No matter who it is.
So that's it. Those are my apolitical political views and opinions. Don't like them? Politely explain to me why you don't. I promise I'll really listen. And I might just change my mind. :)

©Flippa Bird
(Wesley hates politics... and everything else.)
Photo By: My Crappy Cell