Where the dead ships dwell

September 9, 2013 § 3 Comments

Yeah, I listen to In Flames. I know I’m probably too old and should just listen to 90’s alternative stations on the radio and complain about kids today. (Truth be told, my biggest problem with kids today is how conservative you all are. Seriously.) Anyway, today’s post is about suicide.

Yes, I am a very cheerful sort. If reading about this topic (and I’m planning on being frank) is too disturbing for you then you may want to not read this.

Suicide is one of those topics that, even if you’ve been there you can have a hard time understand it, much less explicating it. There are many different kinds of suicide and many different reasons for it – it’s hard to compare the suicide of a teenager being bullied with that of a person with a terminal illness, and those are just two examples. So all I can really do is explicate what suicide means to me, and why I’m uncomfortable with how our society deals with both those that commit suicide and those that attempt it but survive.

I’m using myself as an example here, because all I can do is use my own experiences. « Read the rest of this entry »

Stories my grandfather told me

September 5, 2013 § Leave a comment

I never met my maternal grandfather – he died before I was born. So I’ve really only got my father’s father in my memory, and he was an interesting person. Far more accomplished than I’ll ever be (he was a plastic surgeon) and somewhat detached, emotionally. His relationship with my father was what you could call rocky, in much the same way that England and France’s relationship was rocky during the reign of Henry V. And yes, that was the best I could do for a metaphor.

For whatever reason, he liked me. Perhaps because I was his only grandchild. Perhaps because it made my mother uncomfortable whenever he visited. Understand, my mother was practically fearless – she would, could and did often start huge disturbances in public over anything that bothered or concerned her. She would tell cops right to their faces to back off, and they would. So when I say he made her uncomfortable what I’m really saying is His complete emotional detachment to everyone in the world terrified her because it meant she couldn’t win an argument with him. He barely cared what his own son thought, much less the woman that he’d married, and it was only exacerbated by the fact that my grandfather was the one who’d repaired my mother’s hand after a fireworks accident nearly ruined it – you couldn’t even tell, years later, that she’d had something explode in her palm and blow the skin off of the fingers.

But as I said, he liked me. Even loved me, in a way – he would pick me up on his lap and give me this bristly kiss on the forehead and rub my head absently while he talked. Even as I reached the age to be too big for him to do this, he would anyway – by the time of his death, around my eighth year, he was so frail it was a significant effort on his part to lift me. His limbs would tremble with the exertion. « Read the rest of this entry »

If it doesn’t make me laugh

September 4, 2013 § 1 Comment

I challenge you to come up with more than one funny dead baby joke.

I mean, really funny. Not a smirk raiser. Not a “aren’t we so cheeky, telling this awful joke” crooked grin. An actual knee slappingly funny joke about dead babies. One that doesn’t depend entirely on the fact of dead babies to try and push some kind of social outrage button, a well structured piece of comedy involving dead babies as an integral part of the joke.

« Read the rest of this entry »

Rage is born of fear

September 3, 2013 § 11 Comments

There’s a power in rage that clouds our ability to understand it. Rage – real, honest fury that causes your skin to flush and your teeth to clench, that makes your hands close into fists involuntarily, that seething anger that moves you before you know you’ve moved – precludes reflection. It is incoherent in its insistence on response, part and parcel of the fight or flight response. And that is due to the fact that rage is ultimately just the other side of fear. « Read the rest of this entry »

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