I am a rebel. I am a vanishing, banished breed. I am a dodo.
I also took the quiz Trisa had a link to in her last entry, and learned that . . .
Which Enemy of the Christian Church Are You?
A(nother) Robert and Tim Creation
Which is something I do believe is accurate sometimes. It's just that the credibility of the atheist is so often undercut by their typical portrayal as smug, over-confident egoists. I mean, hey, it's not like I say there is no god. No more than I say there is no nebula in the shape of my ear somewhere out in the universe. I just don't see anything to indicate that I ought to believe that.
Let's face it (and I'm sure 99% of my readers have), if there's an omnipotent god, he can only be an asshole. Because his existence would imply that the only reason suffering exists is because he rather likes suffering.
Oh, there's the argument that says, "Well, maybe we become better people by what we learn through suffering--that's why god leaves it around," which is bullshit because as an omnipotent being, god can create us as well as he likes. An omnipotent being has no need for processes, or for any physical law, or for any laws for that matter. An omnipotent creature can answer its desires by whatever method it desires.
But then, I guess I'm prolly preaching to the converted here, so to speak . . .
I was looking at a red stoplight next to a green stoplight on the way here this evening, and I started thinking about Christmas, which is actually not that far away is it? Christmas was always one of my favourite holidays, or perhaps even my number 1 favourite . . . It just has a warm feeling . . .
I also think that holiday depression is prolly the cosiest, sweetest form of depression to have. It's got the vague, panoramic, cloudy quality that's like a big blanket, without the sting of, say, a depression over a broken heart. In fact, holiday depression, I've found, kinna even softens the blow of a broken heart. It's like how you can't really drink half-n-half on its own, yet with coffee, it makes a good drink (although I prefer my coffee black when I'm depressed, but that's beside the point).
I'm not even remotely depressed at the moment, so I wonder why I'm dwelling on the subject so? Hm . . . Maybe's just the Tom Waits album I'm listening to (that just ended . . . switching cds now . . .).
I was also thinking about my biological father for a few moments on the way here--his name, btw, is Ted.
On the occasion I was recalling, we were listening to a Tom Waits album (that was, he said, a bit too strange for him. Of course) on the way back from the movies. We were going to the house that he had bought for himself and his girlfriend and I guess me to live in. He remarked on this occasion, quite out of the blue, that he had chosen the house because it had seemed like the sort of neighbourhood where one raises a family. There was an undercurrent here that told me he was depressed that I only dropped by, like, once or twice a month, and I never sleep there.
It was sad, for one thing because he'd purchased this house after selling his apartment in Ocean Beach, which I had liked 1000 times more, and I'd've been a 1000 times more likely to stick around in. I'd always wondered why he'd wanted the change--the apartment was cheaper, it was in a much nicer part of town, it had an ocean view (not to mention that one fell asleep to the sounds of the ocean--how cool is that?), the rooms were soundproof (far more conducive to my late-night mode of living), and there were no cockroaches or disgustingly extravagant plumbing problems (as there are at the house).
So it was that I gradually took to staying at my grandmother's just about full time.
There's a further reason that Ted's misfire with home-choice is kinna sad.
When just about anyone in my extended family (i.e. my grandparents, my aunts and uncles) refers to Ted when talking to me, they say, "Your father," or, "Your dad,". In my mum's house, he's referred to as Ted. This is simply because the man who I've thought of my entire life as "Dad", is not Ted, but another guy named Steve, who's still married to my mum.
My mum, you see, divorced Ted when I was about two, and married Steve when I was . . . about six or seven I think. So my earliest real cognisant memories are really all about floating around San Diego with my mum as we stayed at either relative's houses, or the home of one of her boyfriends. And then there came my dad, who is Steve.
After awhile, Ted, who had been living in Tennessee, moved to San Diego, I think when I was about in Junior High. He requested to spend some time with me, and throughout the years thereafter, I'd spend the occasional day or two with him. He's an okay guy in some ways, kind of a nice sense of humour, although when I got to the point when I actually began to care about other people's opinions, I realised he was far too conservative for my tastes. And I never once began thinking of him as "Dad", and anyway, he never seemed to mind me calling him Ted.
That is until one day fairly late in my high school year, he just very abruptly blew his stack one night when he caught me addressing him casually by his name.
"I'm your father," he said angrily, "Call me Dad, or Pop, or father,"
He was really pissed off so I didn't argue--I just said nothing, trying just to sit inoffensively in the passenger seat as he drove me home, hoping he wasn't about to hit me, knowing full well that he had some physically violent tendencies.
Since then, I've not called him Ted to his face. Nor have I called him Dad or father. The fact is, I've gone . . . oh . . . at least seven years managing to totally avoid calling him anything to his face.
The simple fact of the matter is, he is not my dad. At least, not in the manner he wants to be.
I like the guy well enough. I certainly consider him a relative, but maybe more like a cousin—point of fact, he is my cousin. Yes, that’s right, I come from one of those famously incestuous southern families.
It makes no difference that most of my extended family feels my mum was wrong to divorce him. It makes no difference whether mum was wrong to divorce him, which I really have no authority to lay an opinion on. In many ways, sure, Ted’s an asshole, but then, so’s my mum.
But the past that happened, the past where I grew up with Steve as my father, happened. And I have no desire to stoke anyone’s petty desires by changing my fucking memories and the fucking feelings that were cultivated by my lifelong experiences, as unworthy as many consider my life to have been thus far.
Even when my mum kicked me out of the house, forcing me to move in with Ted, and in the eyes of so much of the world, Ted “became” my father. Fuck them all. My heart has ascribed my relations to these people. I’ll change my own feelings only if I feel like it. I’m not a faded leaf for the wind to carry. I’m fucking vital, no matter what they say.
On a slight tangent here, I do not believe in people forcing other people to call them by a certain name or title. I think names should be given, and not imposed.
It’s true, I made up my name; Setsuled. And in the past, at times, I’ve gotten slightly upset when people chose not to refer to me as that. But before to long, I realised how much I was irritating myself by doing that.
It’s not about my control of other people, or my control of their perception of me. My name is my perception of myself, and therein lies the significance of me having made up my own name.
I’m fallible. But the part of my mind that sees the sort of person I’d like to be says that I would like people to take me on their own terms. As far as I’m concerned, I’m Setsuled. To some people, that fact might play a role in how they think of me. In others, it might not, and I’m not gonna freak out about it.
I guess you can see, by reading above, what created this philosophy and this passion for it within me.
Maybe the philosophy--and the genesis for this philosophy--goes further and deeper then that though, because the anger I feel whenever someone is oppressed by the will or actions of another person, is so white hot . . .
Any form of oppression, in any extreme, be it slavery, rape, censorship, or even dress codes . . . always hits a real sensitive button inside me. An anger arises, the intensity of which is, I don’t think, entirely explicable.