Trigger Words and Neutrality

A year or two ago I read an article that some colleges (not any my kids will ever go to) were telling professors to not say certain “trigger words” so sensitive students wouldn’t get upset and kill someone, kill themselves, cry, attack classmates, get depressed, or drop out of school.

No kid should be that sensitive. My feeling is that kids in college need to learn to backhand trigger words like Venus Williams backhands a tennis ball. Bring it on. Make it a sport.

We banter and discuss and generally talk a lot at my house. It’s a good thing. If someone throws an issue out there we’ll talk about it, or at least acknowledge it.

But still, we all have our trigger words. I can hear my husband whispering to the kids, “don’t say that around your mom. It’s a trigger word.”

I have a long list of trigger words that have the potential of sending me right on top of my soap box with a tirade of well grounded opinions. I dare say I’m sure I’ll offend some of my readers but here it goes. Yes, this is a warning. You can leave now if you want to.

Juliette’s Trigger Words and Phrases and Subjects With Pictures

Anything to do with the Trump family. In case you don’t know who they are I’ve posted this photo of them. (from left to right Melania, Donald Jr., Eric, Ivanka)

My political trigger words include: Trump, Shitgibbon, Bannon, EPA, Arts, Education, DeVos, Melania, Trump Children, Marla Maples, AND about a million other words…you get the direction this group is moving in. I also have no kind words for those who are bigoted against my LGBT friends, those who are obsessed with marriage, the sex lives of others, or any other kind of ignorant and hateful bigotry.

Don’t talk to me about RELIGION. That is YOUR business. When I hear the following it drives me NUTS:

  • It happened for a reason.
  • It is God’s will.
  • God has a plan.
  • God had a reason for it.
  • The Bible says so.
  • God only gives you what you can handle (if that is the case then most people I know can handle about six nuclear wars, a plague of yellow jackets, and rattle snakes in their beds, and their ex-lovers in their shower – all of their ex-lovers at the same time naked in the shower with them and NO HOT WATER.)

You get where this is going too. I’m not an atheist by any means (read my blog) but ugh. And don’t even get me started on people who say they don’t believe in science or evolution. Trigger trigger trigger trigger.

Vampires. 

I’m not going to bash Twilight because it got so many teens to start reading. They went from Twilight to other books and that was a good thing. BUT don’t talk to me about Twilight. Don’t. Just DON’T. I don’t want to hear it. I also don’t want to hear anyone say, “I don’t like to read about Vampires.” Fine then don’t fucking read about them. You don’t have to tell me about it.

Other literary and film triggers:

I don’t like (I despise) Eat Pray Love, Bridges of Madison County, Steel Magnolias, Little Women, 50 Shades of Whatever BUT –  I don’t care what you like to read as long as you’re reading. Just don’t question what I read. In fact don’t question what anyone reads. If you want to bash a genre then fuck you. We all have our ways to relax in private with a book. It isn’t for anyone to judge what anyone likes to read. With one exception….

Self-Help Books

90% are SCAMS and GARBAGE that spout Sunday School crap to confuse people, rip them off, make them feel bad, and … it just pisses me off. There are a very few good books out there for those looking for help, but proceed with caution or you’ll have me screaming.

All of that said…

I usually don’t say anything UNLESS I’m with my husband and children. I’m talking about real  life, not Twitter, or someplace else on the Internet (which by is now going to be a place where YOU will be sold like a piece of meat.) I’m speaking of real life.

In real life I tend to be neutral. I’m like Switzerland. I don’t take sides. I distract others away from trigger situations. I move conversations forward and back to where those conversations should be. I can take the most hair-brained off-target discussion and steer it back to where it is supposed to be. And unlike this post, it will all be in a thoughtful and usually good-natured way. My voice is calming and quiet. I’m like cool jazz background music, that calms, but you aren’t even sure you even heard it.

So I’ll rant about my triggers words right here, right now (don’t tell me later that the Jesus Jones ear worm is from me) because this is MY BLOG. I’ll turn it back to you later on with something witty, useful, and profound, and maybe marginally entertaining.

In the world of Vampires we see a lot of things come and go. We try to take everything in stride knowing that most things do pass. Then again a lot of things don’t pass (no puns please) and so THAT is why it is OK to get mad, speak out, vent, and use your voice sometimes.

That’s it.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

And this is a bunch of guys in hats for no special reason.

 

 

 

 

Top things I hate about people who aren’t Vampires

Top things I hate about people who aren’t Vampires

Followed by a few things I like about people who aren’t Vampires.

Warning: Strong language, adult situations, offensive to everyone who thinks they are the shit.

People who won’t give you a recipe or leave out ingredients. Get over it. Your cookies, cake, salsa, tuna casserole, fill in the blank aren’t that special. Vampires don’t cook much but when we do we SHARE. That is what you’re supposed to do. Were you raised in a fucking badger hole or what?

Sexist views and general sexism. Men and women are different, but that doesn’t mean one is lesser than the other. So get over it – both men and women.

Humans who put dogs in crates. Unless your name is Schrödinger or you’re going on a trip or to the vet, dogs (and cats) should be allowed to be part of your life, not your prisoner. If your dog is so badly behaved that you have to lock it in a box MAYBE YOU SHOULDN’T HAVE A DOG. Ever think about that? And don’t tell me that dogs feel safe in crates. Visit your local prison to see how it feels.

People who say they don’t like cats and constantly tell you about it. WTF? I don’t care if you don’t care for cats but you don’t have to make a big immature deal about it. That is just rude. You’re an adult now. Act like it. Are you threatened by the fact that people have cats? Are you threatened by cats? What the crap did a cat ever do to you? Just get away from me.

I hate it when people tell parents with small children, “just wait until she is a teenager. She’ll be HORRIBLE.”  Excuse me? Come over here in the corner and have a nice chat with the Vampire. Just because YOU were a horrible parent doesn’t mean that everyone else will be. And of course some kids have bad days. Some adults have bad days. But please, talk to your kids. I mean from the time they are born until the day you die and it won’t be bad. In fact it will be good. But really, back to the first point… don’t be rude. Don’t be an asshole.

What the crap is up with people who want us all to be Puritans again? Ahhh, they are obsessed with sex or more so what other people are doing in their bedrooms. And why the fuck are they all running for public office? Just mind your own business and wish people happiness in finding love and a sense of family and stability. And don’t tell me that YOU were a virgin when you got married because we all know you weren’t. The Puritans aren’t around anymore because nobody liked them. And nobody will like you if you don’t shut the fuck up. Just keep your thoughts to yourself. Go back to your badger hole.

I HATE people who say “I not into Vampires,” right in my face BEFORE they’ve ever read my blog. They have no idea what this blog is about. Do I tell them to shut the fuck up. No, I just smile politely and leave the boorish person alone with the guy who wants to discuss the relative properties of hydrogen vs helium and how he misses his ex-wife’s big tits. You’ve lost my attention and my respect. You aren’t that special. I listened to your stories and said nice things? Well? And it isn’t just my blog. How many times have you had someone tell you that they don’t like something you do for no reason other than to be rude.

Politics. Nonstop talk about politics. STOP IT. Just shut the fuck up.

 

I could go on until this is one of those literary “long form” blog posts, but I won’t.

I’ll now say a few nice things in a nice bulleted list.

  • I like how people laugh.
  • I like friendly open people, especially when I’m feeling a bit shy.
  • I like people who have open minds.
  • I like that fact that people are warm. That is pretty cool when you’re a Vampire to feel warm skin next to your cold skin. It is kind of like sitting next to the heater vent (your cat can tell you all about that.)
  • I like the way people give back and pay it forward and help others.
  • I like the way people write and tell stories after all these centuries. Seriously they keep coming up with NEW stories. Wow.
  • I like the way some people still have hope.

So thanks for listening. Feel free to add your thoughts on people who aren’t Vampires. And don’t tell me that you put your dog in a box – just don’t.

xoxoxo

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

readbyvampires

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Women in history, religion and stupid ignorant people (let me rant a bit.)

Before you read the rest of this I want you to know that I adore men. I absolutely adore them… most of them. They’re lovely creatures. They’re fun. They have hair on their bodies. They’re men.

The following post is a hostile rant about hostile and ignorant people so if you want to leave right now I’m cool with that. More Vampire and parenting stuff will come your way tomorrow. Maybe even some cats. Maybe even romance, but not today.

I usually don’t write posts like this. In fact I never cover religion (aside from death) or political thoughts. But today I am, just because I feel like it. I can just see my number of followers dropping at a rate faster than mosquitos dropping from DDT in the 1950’s. Don’t do it – don’t stop following me. I promise I’ll be back to fun stuff tomorrow. Just indulge me a little.

Also, this is not a well researched paper or Master’s thesis. It is just me spouting out.

After writing the Pandora post a few days ago I was thinking about all of those “the girl did it” creation stories and myths out there.

Then I thought about the story of Adam and Eve. Oh please don’t even try to get all Sunday School on me. We all know these stories are not literal (anymore than most of my blog posts that teach lessons in life.)

There are serious flaws in this story. Adam and Eve were told NOT to touch the apple/fruit because it held knowledge. Knowledge is power. Keep the people ignorant, as in keep the knowledge to yourself, and you will have all the power.

So you put the apple out there. Then a snake comes and says “EAT IT.” Come on, snakes don’t have lips. They can’t talk. Blame it all on the snakes because they don’t have legs. Blame it on the creature who is different. OK it wasn’t really a snake, it was some creepy pissed off ex-angel asshole pretending to be a snake but still.

So Eve bites the apple and she gains knowledge. She suddenly realizes that she is naked. But wait – that isn’t a bad thing. That means shoes and accessories and great dresses in her future. It’s a beautiful thing. The human body is a beautiful thing.

Yes, just blame everything on the women. If that is the case then why the Hell are men so violent? Why do they fear and repress women in so many cultures? Why do they consider women property? Why are women considered less than human? Why do men go to war and kill each other and each other’s children?

I am not an atheist by any stretch, but most stories of the “first people” are full of stupid holes that can’t make any sense to anyone with half a brain. It is all about control. One half of the population wanted to control the other half. They made up these stories a long time ago. Modern men, real modern men are beyond this sort of silly and dangerous stuff.

There are so many examples cautionary tales of women being told what NOT to do then they turn around and do it. Well screw that. Maybe if they’d let women do what they needed to do and learn what they needed to do the world would be a nicer place. I’d open the box. I’d eat the apple. I’d drag those gold tablets out from under the bed, I’d crack the code, I’d look in the closet, I’d do all of that.

I’m not that impulsive. I’m generally a serious rule follower. Most rules are based in common sense. But there must be a reason behind the rule. Don’t hold out a tasty orange carrot if you don’t want something to come along and eat it, especially if the carrot makes them strong and healthy.

A great source of violence comes from the fear of knowledge, the fear of curiosity, the fear of change and the fear of women. It is also about the fear of sex and ignorance of sex. Notice how religious zealots of all religions – the crazy ones – are obsessed with sex. It is sick. They’re sick. All they think about is sex and women having sex and gay sex and all sex. And the first thing they do when they get a chance is to do something nasty in secret and in a way that will hurt someone. It is a story as old as Adam and Eve and their stupid snake friend. Those who rant against sex and call it evil are so unhealthy. In fact, they can’t even imagine healthy sex because their minds are so sick and twisted and evil and perverted.

And why do people follow these nut jobs? Because they instill a sense of fear and reward people for embracing ignorance. And they punish people for seeking knowledge. They reward people who are too weak and frightened to have their own thoughts – but then again isn’t it easier to have someone think for you.

There is no reason to assume the “man” is the head of the household or even in charge. Why should he be? Why should he get all the ulcers… but that is a different post. Why not just be people regardless of what you look like under your pants? Does it really matter if you sit or stand. Does it matter if you give birth to a child or not? No it doesn’t matter – so why are some people so intent on fucking up our world in order to keep King Ignorance in power?

I wish I knew so I could fix it. But I don’t think it will ever be fixed because Ignorance is so easy and seductive. 

I always tell my kids not to be followers. You don’t have to be a leader but NEVER be a follower.

So what does this have to do with Vampires? Nothing. Vampires never embrace ignorance. That is why we love them so. I’ll get back to the Vampires tomorrow.

That’s all.

 

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

Retreats, Re-treats and a Vampire’s Thoughts on Writing

traditional vampire

Once upon a time, I kissed a Vampire. I wore a bustle dress but he did not have wings. It was lovely.

victoiran bats

In popular mythology Vampires have bat wings and turn into bats. Nice idea.

in your room

I was never one for creeping into bedrooms either, of course unless… unless it was a bed I wanted to stay in for a while. Hey, you know, even Vampires multi-task.

So do moms like me. So do most modern parents (Vampires or not.)

I usually don’t comment on the blogs of others… I try not to be rude or snarky (HA HA April Fools on that one) but I just read a blog post about “Writer’s Retreats.” There were thoughts and quotes from “experts.” I have no beefs with the author. She was lovely. I do have it with other things about retreats and “experts.”

Today has been one of those days when I read about “Writer’s Retreats,” and I think of myself and my writing friends and I think “WTF?” I’m f___ing busy. I have an independent mind. I need coffee. I’m a bitch. But…

Perhaps when I was younger but I would have just found love the idea of a retreat. I also would have found the cutest guy at the retreat and slept with him. I would have written a bunch of lofty angst filled crap that nobody would ever want to read. Yes that is blunt. It is. Deal with it. Or I would have instantly gotten writer’s block and totally bored, or spent the entire time trying to impress everyone else there, and maybe drained the blood from the cute guy and left in the middle of the night. Maybe not. It just has no appeal to me anymore. I don’t want to be lofty. I don’t want to be deep. I don’t want to be literary.

So anyway…

What would my retreat be?

My retreat is in those hours before the sun comes up with just the company of my cats and my coffee.

My retreat is in those times when the kids are practicing their sports, or I’m waiting for, well, just waiting for someone or something else.

It is when I walk the dog and let my mind fill with ideas.

My retreat is looking at pictures and art and music. Filling my senses completely full.

My writing retreat is when I lay next to my husband, our arms around each other. I close my eyes and drift off to a place where everything is perfect and as it should be.

Sure I’d like the luxury of spending a lot of money and time off in a cabin in the woods (but not like that silly movie of the same title) with like minds… but then I think not. I’d rather spend the time with like minds that I already know or who live in my circles. I’d rather be with other bloggers and short story writers, those I know and those I don’t know yet, who live in a rushed world with so much variety and activity that they can hardly think, much less escape from it. They’re the ones who inspire me.

My writing friends and my quick messages to them and their feedback is my retreat.

Reading the works of others, no matter what the content, point of view or genre is my retreat.

The joy of learning the craft of writing (the stuff you don’t see here) is my retreat.

I guess I’m just not a follower. There are those who inspire me but I’m sort of old and I have teenagers and life is extremely serious and at the same time so whimsical and funny and amazing that… that if I went off by myself to write I wouldn’t have anything to write about.

I like my alone time. That said, as a writer and an artist, it has to be MY time. My place. My thoughts that rattle around in my brain for hours and days before anything goes down on paper, even if those hours and days are only a split second.

You might not agree with me. I wouldn’t go on a marriage retreat either. I wouldn’t go on a Vampire retreat. I don’t do retreats. I despise the very idea of self-help retreats. Spiritual retreats make me think of cults totally creep me out. But if you like that sort of thing… well go ahead but don’t ask me along. I’ll just smile and say “have a nice time.”

I have to say that my husband feels the same way about these sorts of things. We came into this relationship with this view already. And don’t even get me started on most parenting books, experts, seminars and retreats. My fangs will come out when that subject comes up.

My husband always says “Everything annoys you.”

I respond with, “Why yes it does.”

I’m not going to pretend I’m perfect or my views and life are perfect (like some people in the news) but it is my life and I’m feeling a little snarky right now. My regular readers know I’m usually pretty sweet and sensitive. I am. Really. Most of the time. OK I try.

But I do like TREATS and I like sharing so I guess that could be a nice Re-Treat. A nice bottle of wine, some cheese, some tea or whatever you like… I could go for that. We’d talk about our writing then maybe we wouldn’t. We’ll just end up talking about our dogs or roller skating or books we’ve read or those day-to-day things that make up the contents of good writing (fact or fiction or those odd bits that live in both worlds.) Or you could send me a link to something cool online or a story you’re writing or I could read your book and then you could read mine. THAT is the perfect retreat – to share treats – the treat of our thoughts and creativity.

And to think this was going to be an essay on being a Modern Vampire… oh well.

Have a good week everyone and don’t listen to me if you don’t want to, but I’ll be here if you need me.

And on a serious and thoughtful note… I hope all of you have your own small retreats, those places either mentally or physically that are yours and yours alone.

 

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

 

clarke dark