Musings of My Mind

"To a great mind, nothing is little." Sherlock Holmes

Month: February, 2014

Predators

The news has been all abuzz lately with news of Mike Sam.  Sam, in case you haven’t heard, has just recently come out as a gay man. He’s also entering this year’s NFL draft. That means if Sam is drafted, he will be the first openly gay player in the league. This is huge. As Saeed Jones pointed out in a piece for Buzzfeed; the NFL is the last great bastion of warrior culture. 

True to Jones’ analysis, players and sportscasters have all been commenting the same way. There’s serious concern about what could happen in the locker room. “I’m going to be really uncomfortable getting naked in front of a gay man” seems to be the prevalent argument. For me, this begs the question…why? Why are you uncomfortable? Are you afraid that he won’t take your no for an answer? That he will look at you as a sexual conquest and nothing more? 

Welcome to the world of women. 

Women learn from an early age how to read a situation; how to read a man. I don’t mean how to know if he’s interested or when he’s flirting. More like when he’s transitioned from friend to enemy, when something in his demeanor shifts and your body hums in fight or flight readiness. I’ve experienced it more times than I care to remember. Are all men like this? Absolutely not. But as a woman who is often alone in parking garages and dark places or who has had charm mistaken for romantic interest, I know what it means to be on edge and uncomfortable. 

Please do not come at me with “ALL MEN AREN’T LIKE THIS DIRTY FEMINIST.” l know they aren’t and I am thankful. I also know that men and boys are being raised in a culture where we are still blaming the victims of rape and assault; where anyone that puts you in the friend zone is a bitch, cocktease, or lesbian. Until we break this cycle, until we fix our culture, women (and men) will look over their shoulders and clutch mobile phones tightly; ready to call for help and run if necessary. 

You are afraid of this man because you know how you look at and think of women. You don’t want to be looked at the way you look at us. 

“I’m not saying he’s a predator…” argued one player. 

No darling, but you’re saying you very well might be. 

 

Soulmates

Plato contemplated that humans were originally born with two heads, four arms, and four legs. Zeus, fearing their power and being the megalomaniac that we all know he was; split the humans and cursed them all to a lifetime searching for their other half.

It’s from this Platonic mythos that we get the idea of soulmates. That perfect person that completes us in ways that we didn’t even know possible. It is both an incredibly romantic notion and an incredibly popular one. Romances are built and destroyed on the premise that soulmates exist…and maybe you aren’t it after all.

Do I believe that there is only one person on the planet for me? No.

Do I believe in soulmates? Yes. In fact, I have several.

I have a group of friends whom I trust completely. They make me feel more like myself when I am around them. We can laugh and cry and be open with one another. In victory or defeat they are there, usually with alcohol to celebrate or soothe. We have bonded in ways that go beyond simple common interests (though there are a lot of those). Each one of them fills in a little hole in my soul that I didn’t realize was there. 

Our society spends so much time focused on romantic relationships that we sometimes completely ignore the other relationships we so desperately need. While my friendships cannot take the place of a romantic relationship, a lover would never; COULD never take the place of my friendships. These people are my heroes, my cheerleaders, my critics, my soulmates. 

 

So, to Carla, Courtney, Victoria, Lauren, Sarah, David, Ashley, and ALL the rest of you (I couldn’t name everyone because I’m so afraid I would forget someone, but if you think you belong on this list, you do) I am forever grateful. ❤