Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Feminism and the Change Room

I identify as a feminist. Which means that I can state an opinion even if other feminists don't agree.

I will probably be doing that now. So be aware. The following may cause steam to come out of your ears. Don't say I didn't warn you.

There's a lot of controversy about bathrooms right now. Basically who can go into what bathroom. This also includes change rooms.

Most of the feminists I have come across are in full support of men who identify as women having full access to women's bathrooms and change rooms.

Frankly, I am shaking my head over this.

Here in Alberta, the schools are passing through a ruling that would allow any boy who identifies as a girl, full access to the girls change rooms and bathrooms. As long as he/she says he's/she's a girl, he/she can go in, change where ever he/she pleases, and if a girl doesn't want to change in front of this boy, she has to leave.

That's right. If she doesn't want to change in front of the person with a penis, and there isn't a private change room for her, she has to leave. Even though that could cause her to miss her next class or be late for it, which she will have to pay the consequences for.

As for the bathrooms, we're not talking about private little rooms with full doors. No one has issue with that. We're talking about stalls, with openings top and bottom, gaps between door and stall, and often locks that are broken or don't work properly.

Now I'm not saying that all transgender people are perverts intent on hurting women. But I don't believe in the other extreme either - that they are all angels who would never hurt anyone ever. As far as hurting others, if transgender people really believe in equality, then they will have to admit that they are just as capable of wrong doing as anyone else.

I read a blurb from a transgender person explaining the fear they have using the men's bathroom. I've read about transgendered people being beaten up by men when using the men's bathroom. This is wrong. No doubt about it. Let me make this clear. No person should be beaten up for being transgendered. Not at all!

But why is it okay to ignore the real problem - like men beating up people. Instead the answer is to force women to share their accommodations with someone who carries a weapon.

That's right. If you have a penis, you have a weapon against women. And let's be clear. Not every man rapes women. In fact I would bet the vast majority of men in North America do not rape women. Yet we have still created separate bathrooms and change rooms for men and women. Why is that? Well, maybe because women don't want to change in front of penis bearers. Otherwise, why bother with any privacy at all? Why not just have open rooms of toilets and showers and just make everyone do their business in front of everyone?

I've seen the argument that men who think they're women are not attracted to women. But rape is not about attraction. It's about power. And transgendered people haven't had much power in the past. Now they have power over women, because they demanded entrance to women's accommodations, and they got it. Surely a woman who complains about this needs to be put in her place.

And interestingly, or actually typically, NO ONE HAS ASKED WOMEN. Really. Anyone been asked? Got a chance to place a vote? Nope, it's been a bunch of people with penises who have made this decision.

So what's feminist about that?

And I'm tired of the memes that tell women that there's nothing to fear. It's condescending. What right does anyone have to tell someone else what to fear? Rape is real. Voyeurism is real. Attacks on women are real. And even if most rapes are done by a man that the woman knows, that doesn't mean that there's no such thing as stranger rape.

So why are we taking down walls of protection as flimsy as they may be? Sure any man can follow a woman into a restroom or change room, but he's less likely to do it if he's afraid of getting caught. Now all he has to do is say that he's a female and the blame is then transferred to the complaining woman.  She's a hateful bigot. How dare she question him. So what if she's sitting on the toilet and she sees the guy through the gap eyeing her. He has every right to be there, because he says he does. So what if he looks over the top to watch her shower naked. It's her problem for not being open and saying "here I am."

As for the claim that there are no incidences of men taking advantage of the situation, all you have to do is a google search and there will be several examples.

There's also the controversy around a boy who claims he's a girl and started using the girls change rooms at his/her high school. The girls were not comfortable with the situation, and staged a boycott. Which is their right to do so, since NO ONE ASKED THEM IF THEY WERE WILLING TO CHANGE IN FRONT OF HIM. Some of the comments I read around this from people were basically telling these girls to shut up and calling them bigots.

We are back to telling women to shut up and just accept it.

So let's be clear. If you don't want to change in front of a penis bearer, or have one walk in on you while you're changing, and if you dare to speak up about it, then you are a bigoted homophobic who hates everyone.

And let's be clear about this. Although the statistics are something like 1 in 3 women will suffer sexual abuse in her lifetime, and although women have a right not to be sexually abused, standing up for yourself and saying "I'm not comfortable having men in the same locker room" is not okay. You have the right not to be abused, you just don't have the right to protect yourself or other women.

Let's also be clear about something else. And I admit that I don't have statistics to back this up. But if "only" 5% of rapes are stranger rapes, and "only" 33% of the population of women are raped, and women make up "only" 50% of the population, I think that's still more women who are raped by a stranger than the amount of transgendered people.

There's a lot of women in this world. Women who were born women and aren't identifying as anything else and don't want to and can't even hide the fact that they're women even if they tried.  And yet, the tiny minority is dictating to a majority and demanding that all these women cater to the needs of a few.

And lets be clear too, this teen was offered other accommodations. In fact private accommodations which any girl would happily have - and he/she TURNED IT DOWN. Lila wanted to share the change room with the girls.

Which shows he/she's not thinking like a girl.  And although he/she's demanding compassion from the girls who are standing up to him/her, he/she shows a complete lack of empathy for the situation he/she's insisting on putting them in and instead is playing the victim.

Let's be clear again. NO ONE IS ASKING WOMEN.

Even a lot of the memes directed towards those hateful bigoted women who don't want to get naked in front of penis bearers, are either transgender, or men.

That's right. Men are weighing in on this issue and basically telling women to shut up and suck it up.

See, that way they don't have to have transgendered people in their bathrooms.

Lets face it, if men are beating up the men who dress as women, they're going to beat up the women who dress up as men. So no one will be using the men's rooms because men beat people up.

Women don't. Women are known for being caring. We want everyone to be comfortable. We want everyone to have a place to pee and a place to change. And as it turns out, there's a group of women who have no problem giving up their private places to ensure that. Because we're trained to bend over backwards for everyone's comfort. Which is noble, and lovely and praiseworthy. But it is often to our detriment.

So because men beat up people, everyone else is in the women's bathrooms and change rooms, either minding their own business, or ogling, or running around naked and not caring one little bit if this is hard for women. Let's not focus in on those men who are beating people up. Let's instead focus in on women and shame them for their feelings.

But as long as transgendered people feel safe, that's all that matters. Women's feelings on the matter and especially rape victims, are silly and misguided and they should just get over themselves.



Saturday, March 26, 2016

What the World Needs Now...

From an old sixties song:

"What the world needs now, is love, sweet love,
It's the only thing that there's just too little of..."

It is the Eve of Easter Sunday. Over two thousand years ago, people wept over the loss of the Lord Of All. His body wrapped in the tomb, His messages of love and hope, quieted. The promise of the King that would rescue them gone.

He could have rescued Himself as they arrested Him, tormented Him, humiliated Him, tortured Him, and yet, He didn't bring forth the powers that allowed him to raise Lazarus from the dead, give sight to the blind men, heal the sick, and bring hope to a downtrodden people weary of the poverty and the violent world they lived in.

He was born to a young girl unmarried and a virgin at the time of conception but betrothed to a loving man who willingly took Him as his own.

We know little of His childhood, but we can assume that Mary taught Him love, scolded Him when He needed it, and showered Him with hugs and kisses often. She would have showed Him compassion as she helped her neighbors and those with less, and took care of her other children. He learned at her knee, while doing the household chores, while taking care of younger brothers and sisters, while listening to her words and watching her actions. She could not have done this if she thought of Him as her God, for she needed to raise a man. Raising a God would be too overwhelming.

Joseph too, would have taught Him love for he was a loving man. He would have taught Jesus acceptance and gentleness, and He would have taught Him the hard work of being a carpenter. The painstaking and artistic beauty of carving something from the materials that God had given. The need of creating something serviceable and beautiful. The fairness of trade. The value of money. The spirit of generosity.

His spiritual leaders would have taught Him how to read and write, the words of God, the rituals of the Jewish faith, and the needs of the people.

His friends and neighbors would have shown Him the lives of shepherds and fisherman, rabbis and teachers.  He would have seen the examples of the poor and of kings, all names that he adopted as His own.

And His Father in Heaven would have taught him the rest.

He took all that He was taught and showered it upon the people, giving them three great commandments:

Love God.
Love your neighbor.
Love yourself.

Those three commandments take care of everything.

But there were those who saw Him as a threat and before long He was nailed to a cross leaving His followers wondering why He didn't rescue Himself. If He could perform miracles, which they had all witnessed, why didn't He perform a miracle for Himself? They needed Him. He was their rescuer, their superhero. Why didn't He break the nails and climb down from the cross?

Even worse, He cried out to His Father asking why He had been abandoned.

But there was no rescue for Jesus. He did not step down from the cross. No angels came to save him. And now He lay alone in the tomb.

It wasn't until the next day, Sunday, the day after the Sabbath, that the answer came. Not only had He risen from the tomb, He had risen fully intact except for the marks of the nails and spear to prove who He was. It was another Mary who saw Him first and ran to tell the others who didn't believe her.

We still grapple with the implications of this. The gift He gave us which we do not fully understand. The ability to finally cheat death. That death has no meaning but is just a doorway to eternal life. The grace of forgiveness. We do not understand it. We have theories. We have those who can't grasp it and therefore reject it. We overlook the pain he suffered in Gesthemane, paying for our sins because it doesn't make sense. We focus on the suffering on the cross even in some religious communities reenacting it in efforts to understand what He went through. But we can never understand what He went through. He did it so we wouldn't have to.

He stepped down from the cross, intact, whole, greater than He was before, reclaiming His rightful place, changing the crown of thorns for a crown of eternal glory, one that He shares with us all, if we choose to accept it.  We don't even have to understand it. We are just asked to embrace it.

And yet, we still ignore His three great commandments. We live in a world where we blow people up, and blow people out. We call each other degrading names, and forget to love people as ourselves. We follow leaders who preach hate and revenge. We stomp people down to raise ourselves up forgetting that it is by raising others up that we raise ourselves. We put money ahead of people claiming that it is all ours. We say "I did it all by myself" without recognizing the people who helped us along the way and hold us up. We complain about the poor even though Jesus loved the poor. We are suspicious of the "other" even though Jesus told the story of the good Samaritan - the other. We look down on those who rely on the help of people even though Jesus relied on the help of people for food and lodging. We look at people who serve as menial servants while Jesus taught the nobility of washing His followers feet. He taught us Love.

We have been given the key of happiness, and instead of using it we throw it away, looking for a different key and trying the same ones over and over again, never finding success and blaming God for our failures when we have been told and shown what to do.

And although we can each do our part in embracing His commandments we can't do it all alone. We need each other. We can't do it "all by ourselves".

What the world needs now is love...

Book Review: The Penny Whistle - B.J. Hoff

Okay, I admit it.

This stupid little book made me cry.

It didn't just make me cry a nice little tear gently sliding down my face. It made me sob.

I'm blaming menopause.

Because this little story (and it is a very small book, readable in a sitting), about a teacher and one of his young students in the depressing little coal mining town of Skingle Creek can't possibly be that touching.

Young Jonathon Stuart is loved by all his students but the combination of someone stealing his much loved flute and his ongoing heart problems has taken away his music and his desire to go on. He can feel death right around the corner. Music and his gift for playing it, especially his flute had brought joy to him and allowed him to share it with others. It gave him strength when he was tired. Now it was gone.

Young Maggie is smart and perceptive and frightened by what she is seeing. So she gathers the other students around to devise a plan to give Mister Stuart his music back. But more pressing needs arise and the plan goes awry.

Interspersed with this is the gnawing poverty that this town suffers from. Before the time of safety standards and social assistance, the men descend into the coal mines before dawn and come up after sunset, never seeing the light, being paid meagerly, and having no place to shop but the coal owners store. It's back breaking, spirit stealing, health depriving, dangerous, poverty living and there is little room for anything else.

But the spirit of Maggie and her best friend Summer, manage to overcome this and are able to find meaning in such a mean existence, even when tragedy strikes, stealing from Maggie much of her joy. Yet in spite of her grief, she is still able to find a way to give to Mister Stuart something he had lost, and he in turn was again able to inspire his students.

This is really a lovely inspirational book. Some might call it sappy and sentimental, but if it is, it's done well.

B.J. Hoff is a well known Christian writer and has many books to her credit.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Book Review: Patchwork Mysteries #1: Family Patterns - Kristen Eckhardt

In this first book of the series Patchwork Mysteries, we meet Sarah Hart, a widow who makes her living taking in borders and restoring antique quilts. And she likes to solve mysteries too.

The first mystery revolves around her grandmother Molly, who disappeared in 1920, when she was a young married woman, leaving behind a husband and six year old boy.

Molly was never found and her husband lived with the towns suspicion for the rest of his life, many convinced that he had murdered her.

When Sarah's twelve year old twin granddaughters discover a hidden passage in the family home, it leads them to the quilt that belonged to the six year old boy - her father.

While Sarah restores the quilt for her father who now resides in a nursing home and is suffering with bouts of Alzheimers she discovers clues to the mystery of Molly.

This mystery honestly had me stumped. I can often solve them before the protagonist, but this one I couldn't. However I would add that the author cheated a little. Sarah had information that wasn't given to the reader. Still even with that, there were clues that could have left the reader to jump.

My other complaint and I have this complaint with any author that does this, is characters who have names that begin with the same letter. In this case there's two sets and they will all be part of the regular series. Sarah's twin granddaughters are Amy and Audrey - yes I know people often name twins like this, or they give them rhyming names, but not all the time. It would have been better to give them completely different names. I had to keep checking to see which one was which.

The other problematic set is her best friend and neighbor Martha, and her daughter-in-law Maggie. Both names are similar and have been around for a long time and don't give clues to age.

So authors, if you are reading this, please watch what you name your characters.

This is also a book put out by Guideposts, a Christian publication, so there is references to Christianity, however I did not find it heavy handed. Sarah utters a few prayers, there's one unlikely coincidence that can be chalked up to the hand of God, and a few mentions of a church, but it was all well done and not over done. Still this might be a problem for some people. In which case they shouldn't read inspirational fiction. 

Fortunately I like inspirational fiction and although the mystery is tied up, the problems of the characters aren't, which makes it real. 

Sarah herself is a likable character. And I also enjoyed the attention given to the restoration. I never knew before how it was done and it was very interesting and meticulous. I would never want to restore an old quilt - I prefer creating a new one - but I can appreciate the artistry that's involved. It can be very painstaking. It's not too often that I learn something new from a cozy, and I found this fascinating.

I'm looking forward to the rest of the series.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Book Review: Stick a Geranium in Your Hat and Be Happy - Barbara Johnson

Think Erma Bombeck from a Christian Ministerial position.

If you are an atheist you'll hate this book. It's simply not for you. Just letting you know up front.

Barbara is unabashedly Christian and she preaches from that stand point. Her gospel is about spreading joy and finding humor in adversity (something I find personally a great way to get through things). She knows heartache and she shares it in this book.

Her husband suffered a car accident so severe that he was never going to be much more than a vegetable. He fully recovered. But it was a trying time as she had to figure out how to raise their four sons alone with a severely disabled husband.

Her eldest son was killed in action during the Vietnam War.

Son number two was killed a few years later in a car accident.

Strangely even these events didn't do her in. Her biggest challenge was son number three who announced to her at Disneyland in the mid 70's that he is gay.

Okay, this is a pretty funny chapter as she explains her reaction and how she started viewing everything and everyone. Suddenly everything was shouting at her "homosexual" as the Disney parade went by.

It sent her into a tailspin where she went into a severe depression and thought of it as worse than the deaths of her two oldest who were "deposits in heaven." Her son also disowned them and stayed away for eleven years cutting all ties which was another trial. It caused her to set up "Spatula" a help community for parents of gay children.

Now to be fair, although her experience and viewpoints will upset many people, at the time it was the 70's  and into the 80's after the aids scare. At the time the "gay lifestyle" which she was so afraid of was pretty real. Unprotected sex in bars. Promiscuity. It's not a lifestyle that parents of straight kids want their children to be involved in when they've raised them to find a good spouse and settle down.

Her heartache is real even if it isn't politically correct in these times.

But through it all she never rejected her son and prayed for him to come home.

She also shares her "joy room" a place where she collects the bits and pieces that people send her to express joy. It's a neat idea if you have the space.

The book is also filled with quotes that inspire her.

Barbara passed away a few years ago from brain cancer. She thought it would be her diabetes that would get her.

If you can set aside your own prejudices and remember when it was written (1990), then this is an enjoyable book. Not as funny as Bombeck, but definitely a woman who found joy.

Book Review: The Little Books of Why: Why a Star? - Bodie and Brock Theone

Lessons learned while lying with her mother under the stars, a story of when Brock and Bodie were ten (they really were childhood sweethearts), and astronomy all tie in with the star in the sky at Jesus' birth.

Bodie is an expert in tying real life experience to bible stories and their meanings. In this small book (80 pages), she doesn't ignore science, but instead integrates it into faith and belief, looking at science and religion as two sides of the same coin.

She even attempts, using science, to explain how it was possible for this special star to appear in the sky at that time.

In the end, it really is about seeing signs and interpreting them as proof that God exists. Of course there are those who don't see it that way, but for those, no sign will ever be proof.

Book Review: The Little Books of Why: Why a Shepherd? - Bodie and Brock Theone

Out of the three Why books I read (there are four), this one is my favorite.

Bodie tells us of her experience as a kid being a shepherd as her camp vacation. In it she goes through the different challenges and responsibilities a shepherd has to the sheep. There's a lot more to it than just lying around.

When you understand what the responsibilities are it becomes clearer what Christ's responsibility is as the shepherd and the meaning of Psalm 23 (The Lord is my shepherd) as well as the parable of the lost sheep.

She does it beautifully going step by step through her responsibilities of taking care of the sheep in the pasture which to most of us is a foreign experience, to the responsibilities not only of Christ's people, but of all people. When the parables were told by Christ, ordinary everyday things and experiences were used so the people could understand. Now it takes a little more effort to understand the deeper meanings that a surface understanding doesn't quite explain. Most of us will never have the experience of being actual shepherds.

I found the book thoughtful and gave me a few ah ha moments.

Book Review: The Little Books of Why: Why a Crown? - Bodie and Brock Theone

Bodie and Brock Theone (pronounced Tay-nee), are a prolific wife and husband team of inspirational historical fiction. You can't go into a religious bookstore without seeing their books.

This series of little books (80 pages) are intended as one sitting inspired writings to help understand God and His ways better.

In this one. Bodie is really the writer of these books as she uses her real life experiences and ties them into biblical stories and her understanding.

In this book she uses the story of the Garden of Eden extensively, as well as Jesus' last day wearing the Crown of Thorns. Of course the theme of the crown comes up repeatedly for the crown has had great symbolism throughout history.

My only complaint about this book (bearing in mind that I don't necessarily come to the same conclusions that the Theones do), is that at some points they quote chapters from their upcoming (at the time) books. It sometimes felt like a book used to sell their other books. Which is an interesting marketing ploy. Write a little book to sell a bigger book.

But other than that I found it interesting - especially for those like me who are learning different ways to look at religious beliefs and symbols.

Book Review: The Last Lecture - Randy Pausch

An accomplished professor of Computer Science, Human Computer Interaction and Design at Carnegie Mellon University, and happily married father of three young children, Randy received the devastating news that he had terminal pancreatic cancer when he was in his early forties.

It is tradition for retiring professors to give their "last lecture" and this is Randy's.

Instead of focusing on his death sentence, he instead focused on his life lessons.

This is a truly inspiring yet non-religious book. He states up front that he won't talk about religion.

But he shares the rules he's lived by and how he achieved his various goals, which included being in zero gravity and working in the animation department at Disney.

One of my favorite stories in this book is a trip to Disneyland when he was a boy. He and his sister decided to spend ten bucks (this is 1969 so that was a lot of money for a kid), on a salt and pepper shaker set in one of the stores. At one point they dropped and broke it. Devastated, they went back to the store and told the clerks what happened. The Disney people gave them a replacement. When they told their Dad the story, he from then on, made sure he visited Disneyland often and rewarded his employees with trips to the park. His father ended up giving Disneyland more business than the ten dollars they gave up.

The point of the story was to be generous. Not because you expect something, but generosity does multiply.

The book is filled with inspiring stories of how he got to where he is and helping those along the way.

Sadly, Randy wasn't able to achieve his goal of surviving cancer and died not long after his lecture even though he appeared to be in perfect health. However he talked about how he lived his short but accomplished life.

The biggest heartache for him was leaving his children without a living father. Which shows that in spite of all we accomplish out there in the world, what really matters is family, whatever that is for us.

This is a really nice gift book especially for someone who is about to embark on a new page in their life.


Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Where Do I Belong?

Not sure where I fit in anymore. Obviously not with the church. And frankly I can't drum up the hate to fit in with many ex-Mormons either. I get why there's anger, I just don't feel it that intensely. Not that there isn't things that get me riled up. It's just that I don't see evil or bad intentions every time a Mormon friend says hi or drops off a gift or states an opinion I don't agree with. Nor do I feel the need to mock everything about Mormonism. I still like a lot of LDS artists and writers. I have no desire to throw out all my LDS fiction, nor my Greg Olsen print of Jesus. I still find humor in Mormon people poking fun at themselves (which they're pretty good at). In fact I cringe at the nit picking that I find ex-Members indulge in. 

I don't fit in with atheists. I can't deny spiritual experiences and I find them condescending towards believers. I don't fit in with born agains. I find them condescending too and demanding that everyone believe what they believe. I'm not completely against abortion in the right situations but I'm not completely for it and find it grating lately that there seems to be a celebration of it. I still cringe at profanity although I don't want to censor anyone but it seems like a teenage rebellion thing when I read some ex-members posts and they throw around swear words simply because they can and not because it really adds to what they are saying. Now I realize that's a cultural thing for me, but I guess that's part of my culture.

I have no desire to become drunk or even experiment with alcohol. The devastation it caused my childhood was more than enough for me although I do like my coffee.

And part of me is torn. On one hand I want to continue writing about LDS subjects because it was over thirty years of my life, and there is the hope that what I have to say might help someone, somewhere. But there's the other part of me that says "really, now they're claiming that hatred towards children of gay parents is a direct revelation of God? I don't care anymore because it's just so stupid. They can do what they want. I can't change anything about them. I'm outa here."

But "I'm outa here" leaves me completely alone.

Book Review: Mainely Murder Mystery Series #1: Homicide at Blue Heron Lake - Susan Page Davis & Megan Elaine Davis

Homicide at Blue Heron Lake (Mainely Murder Mystery Series #1) 

When newspaper reporter Emily Grant returns to the family cottage on Blue Heron Lake to make it ready for possible sale, she doesn't expect to fall for Nate Holman, her high school crush, all over again. She really doesn't expect to discover not one, but two dead bodies on the peaceful island lake.

This is an inspirational murder mystery romance. So nothing hot and steamy, but there is a lot of grappling with Emily's past regarding her now dead step-father, as well as run-ins with former high school aquaintences.

Plus there's the threat of a conservation group that wants to buy up enough land to be able to rid everyone of their cottages (which I don't quite understand how that can happen).

The writer does an excellent job depicting life on a summer lake. It makes me wish that I had had that experience on a regular basis (I once was invited for a week to someone's summer cottage - and I loved it). It's a different world. Can you get nostalgic for something you've never had?

I did find the main character judgmental of another characters faith journey. But I guess that's to be expected in inspirational books where it's the main characters beliefs that are right and everyone else is wrong. Except for that annoying quirk, Emily is likable and capable.  

Nate Holman is a romantic character. He and his mother own the marina general store where they rent boats and deliver the mail. He's strong but not controlling. And he's in love with Emily, as he's always been.

The murder mystery was fine although I felt it wasn't quite finished. I would have liked to hear from the murderer. 

But really I was sighing more over having a cottage on a lake than about anything else.

Other books in the series

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Book Review: The Red Gloves Series 1: Maggie's Miracle - Karen Kingsbury

Maggie's Miracle (The Red Gloves Collection #2)
Eight year old Jordan has a simple request for his busy lawyer mother - address and mail a letter from him to God.

When Megan opens the letter she discovers the request is for a new Daddy, a request that Megan feels is impossible to give. After her cold marriage to a man many years older which ended in his death from a heart attack, she feels no need to try again. However she does discover a program for Healing Hearts, a way to provide Jordan with a male mentor.

Meanwhile, Casey is still in grief from the death of his wife and baby two years earlier. He deals with it by jogging, but one day he sees an ad for Healing Hearts, a program that puts adults together with grieving children. Maybe it's just what he needs.

Karen Kingsbury is a well known inspirational writer. This is a quick Christmas book - it can be done in an evening. As with many inspirational books there's no such thing as coincidence. All the seemingly coincidental occurrences are because God is in charge so you can get away with a lot more than a secular audience would accept. And we pretty much know what's going to happen in the end, because that's what romantic books are about.

Still it is heartwarming. I find the writer tells too much. Perhaps because she wanted to get all the information in a short book. But there's lots of background stuff that could have been handled differently. It's all stuff we needed to know, but it could have been done better. Flashbacks for instance, or mentions in conversation, instead of "this is what happened".

She does a good job telling the story from three different viewpoints in third person. Especially Jordan's viewpoint which really does sound like a young boy.

Still, I think this story would have been more powerful, if it had taken it's time and showed us instead of told us.

Other Red Glove Books

Monday, January 4, 2016

The Sky You Were Born Under

Last year I started a book called:
A Writers Book of Days: A Spiritual Companion and Lively Muse for the Writer’s Life – Judy Reeves
It's set up with a writing prompt for each day. I made it through the first month and then quit, because I'm a flake or something. 

Anyway, I thought I would start if up again in February, and in the meantime occasionally give you a taste of what it prompted me to write before I got lazy. Besides, I'm drawing a blank on what to write about today. So here's a bit of poetry. I would say enjoy but that would be arrogant.   

The Sky You Were Born Under (after Joy Harjo)

by Anna Maria Junus

The sky you were born under,
Left you open to abuse,
And to being undervalued,
Because you are a girl.
The sky you were born under,
Told you who you had to be,
And who you had to listen to,
In order to be loved. (But not truly loved.)
The sky you were born under,
Made you wear certain clothes,
And speak a certain way,
So as not to entice men, (but still wanted you to attract them).
The sky you were born under,
Turned you into a sex object,
Yet demanded virginity,
And still expected motherhood.
The sky you were born under,
Cut off your wings,
And restricted your brain,
But, if you can ignore,
All that you were taught to hurt you,
You can grow back your wings,
And unleash your brain.
The sky that you were born under,
Is the sky that you can soar into.