Friday, September 28, 2012

New FFAQ--Bring on the questions and cast your dittoes

All right guys, it's Friday and I'm ready for a new question! (If you're new here, FFAQ stands for Friday's Frequently Asked Question.)

You know the routine. Ask a question you've been curious about. If you see a question you'd like to see answered, leave a "ditto" and I'll respond to the most commonly asked one or two questions.

Today I'm at my third day of a really long, heavy training about sex addiction. (I'm becoming a certified sex addition therapist (CSAT).)  The training is the Real Deal. It's intense and involved and goes through the whole weekend, which my mind can't wrap around ("wait, what? I'm working on Saturday???"), but I'm in it to win it. My FFAQ response will probably come on Monday of next week, but I'll drop a few posts to let you know how bored I am much I'm learning in training.

See you guys. Have a superb weekend. And thanks for your general sensitivity to my post yesterday. I appreciate it a lot. You guys are seriously awesome, and one day I want to have a party and hang out with you all and meet you in person and tell jokes with you all over some hummus and carrots. Or celery if you prefer.





Thursday, September 27, 2012

FFAQ--Guy Friends

All right, let's do this thing.

Here's the question posed by Nicole which was the runner up last FFAQ (or FOLS--short for Friday... oh, look! Shiny!) as some commenters have more appropriately named it since I'm doing it on a random WEDNESDAY):

Do you have a hard time having guy friends? I know as a married woman, I try not to have friendships with men, but since your attraction is different, does having male friends pose a problem for you?

I do have trouble having guy friends. 

But it's probably not for the reasons you'd think.

Monday, September 24, 2012

In which my faith in humanity is restored...

...one comment at a time.

So, yeah, I spent today periodically checking the comments on my post this morning ready to strike. I have been sitting patiently, like a sniper, awaiting the moment when I could obliterate the first offensive comment I saw so that people could see that I'm not all talk, and that I am dead serious, and that I really will NOT tolerate that stuff anymore.

And?

You people have left 80 of the most civil, awesome, respectful comments every written about this complex topic.

How annoying of you!!!!

And also

THANK YOU SO MUCH!

Real dialogue is happening right now. Like, seriously, people are talking. Not everybody is agreeing. Not everybody thinks in the same ways. But everybody that has said something has shown civility, has tempered their words and opinions with conciliatory language, has avoided inflammatory phrases for the most part, and has even apologized if they made mistakes.

Part of me is so disappointed I didn't get to show off my delete-button skills.

But most of me is so freaking happy to see the discussion be so awesome. I mean look at some of these conversations! People are actually talking to each other about hard things. I have felt enriched and educated as I've read some of the conversations on that post, and heard people speak plainly and without fear about their deeply held fears and beliefs.

I have no idea how long it will last, but I'm taking it for however long I can. And I am loving it. Maybe, just maybe, this is a new leaf, and the tone has taken shape in a lasting way.

But you better believe that the part of me that got all serious this morning is still waiting, dormant, for the first comment to cross into my arbitrarily chosen line "too much" so that I can decimate it.

All right, folks. I'm tired. FFAQ response tomorrow? Maybe. I have lots to do for this training I'm doing at the end of the week which feels actually as time consuming and expensive as a small grad degree.

Good night. I hope you all sleep well.

When the cat's away...

So last night was really great.

There were so many awesome people with so many awesome stories and I loved meeting everyone. Thank you to those of you who traveled far distances to come see me--and to all of you readers who came to support me, it seriously meant a lot to me.

I was an organizational disaster as I spoke and I had like ten notecards and another notecard and a piece of paper and I kept kind of losing track of what I was talking about and I looked like an ADD star palace, but in the end it ended up going well and I felt like I was able to say what I was supposed to say.

Here's a picture taken by a reader named Christen Lane who came to hear me and then posted it on my Facebook page.

My blind eye is only kind of squinty!!!

Thanks for the great photo, Christen.

When I got online after the event to check my email I did not feel so awesome.

So, I posted my last post at the airport on the way to Utah, and then I went off the grid because I was stressing out and needed all of my mental energy to think about my remarks. After I was done last night, I was like "oh, I can hop online now and see how things are going." Imagine my dismay and disappointment when I saw that I got numerous emails from people saying that the LDS temple ceremony was being mocked in the comments section of the post.

Of course I had to see for myself, and I was repulsed to see they were not exaggerating. And that there were one or two commenters who absolutely dominated the comment section with hate-filled, vitriolic, intolerant posts.

I have made a decision.

I am moderating comments.

I had thought that if I talked about this enough times, explained the type of conversation I was going for--the openness I seek, the feel of acceptance and sharing and mutual understanding, and respectful exploration of differences I am trying to foster here--that people would pick up on that and then manage themselves. Unfortunately that doesn't seem to be happening.

This will be imperfect. I won't be able to be "fair." I have biases, and I will be more likely to remove the posts of some people based on history than others.

At the same time though, I don't want you to think that divergent opinions are the problem here. They aren't the problem. They are what make conversations great. There are so many divergent views shared by commenters who are able to articulate their thoughts in a respectful way (and did so even on yesterday's post). Anyone trying to share a perspective with respect and kindness, you have absolutely nothing to worry about w/ regard to moderation. In fact, your input is encouraged.

It is the people who have a clear agenda, who have explained that they do not intend to engage in this conversation in a respectful way, who can expect their comments to be removed. Every time. Without apology from me.

Furthermore, there is one more line I'm going to draw. As a believing Mormon, I cherish my religious beliefs, just as other adherents to other faiths cherish theirs. I love the exchange of ideas and information that happens when espousers of different creeds explore and share ideas. I think it's extremely useful to have that kind of exchange, and such a discussion requires a safe, respectful environment.

Because of this, any person who tears down a religious creed on my blog, or speaks derogatorily of someone's sacred beliefs can expect to have their comment swiftly removed. The level of disrespect and blatant intolerance I saw yesterday was breathtaking. It's actually been going on for a long time and I'm so sorry everyone has had to suffer through it for as long as they have. I've probably waited too long to take this action--the axe has been at the root for months--but I really did have hopes that people could self-manage. Last post's comments--and the many emails from people personally appalled by their sacred beliefs being trampled on--have demonstrated in a clear and obvious way that the time has come. Which makes me sad because while the presentation has been abhorrent, I have appreciated the perspective.

Aaaaand consider this issue put to rest. If you have a personal question about the policy or comments, feel free to email me at joshua dot weed at gmail dot com. I won't be responding to comments about it, but I will respond to emails.

All right. I have four trillion clients to see today. I'm gonna try to answer my FFAQ question tonight, but I'm going to be so busy recovering from the trip and preparing for a training I'll be going to from Wednesday to Sunday that it might not get finished. But I'll post something tonight regardless. It might be one sentence. About how tired I am. But whatev.

Thanks again to those who came to see me speak. Meant the world to me.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

What isn't soothing about this?




"What's that in your 1-year-old's mouth?" I'm sure you're asking.

Isn't it obvious?

It's an electrical outlet cover, of course! What adult doesn't remember the halcyon days of childhood, when they risked electric shock to find a two-pronged, hard-plastic replica of a pacifier?

"Mommy, I found a binkie!"


Hazards Involved in Tessa's New "Toy":

1. These things aren't just lying around the house. That means that in order to obtain one, Tessa is using her tiny, outlet-sized fingers to wrench them out of the socket. Totally not dangerous!

2. Choking hazard? Check.

3. Probably not orthodontically approved.

4. She's never used an actual binkie. So who knows the psychology behind why this is happening?

I know I don't.

"Oh, come on. Don't try to tell me you've never wanted to try one of these..."


This hasn't happened only once. This happens daily.

So pretty much we're the best parents on earth, is what I'm saying.

Oh, serenity.

Want one of these fun toys for your child?

I kind of love how the advertisement features a picture of a child ripping one out of the wall.


Or, if you're a good parent, you can purchase these strange contraptions to actually protect your child from electricity:


But seriously, where's the fun in that thing? You can't even pretend to be a baby with it!







Monday, September 17, 2012

34 memories--a love story

34 of my favorite memories of Lolly:

1. When I was 11 years old and she was 13, Lolly gave a talk in sacrament meeting that changed my life. It was so genuine and so powerful--about how she received a witness that the Book of Mormon is true--and she was radiant, and I remember thinking "I want to know what she knows. And I want to be her friend."

2. Not long after that, we served at a wedding together.  We laughed the entire time.

3. I turned 12, and went to mutual for the first time. She hung out with me and helped me feel comfortable in my own skin.

4. At 13, I was going through one of the most difficult years of my life (to date). Many factors combined to make this particular year indescribably hellish. But on the first day of school that year (8th grade) I saw Lolly, the student body president of the school and a grade ahead of me, eating lunch with all her friends and I thought "I bet she'd let me sit with her." She did. Every day. For the entire year.

5. That was the only safe place I had that year.


Laurel Shea, Student Body President of Jefferson Junior High


6. We made some important memories that year.

7. One of them was one time I saw that she was chewing gum and...

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Not Good + tomorrow is Lolly's birthday!

So, you know the illness that has stormed through my house causing a need for Diarrhea Juice and basically making life miserable here at Chateaux Weed?

I got it today.

I'm sticking to the BRAT diet, downing vitamin C (does that actually help?) and I am really, really, really hoping I wake up feeling better tomorrow.

It's only fair that I got it though because when Lolly was sick I teased her and was like "Hey Lolly, what's the BRAT diet again? Isn't it beefsteak, roast beef, anchovies and tilapia?" and she was like "bleh, I think I'm gonna be sick..."

I'm not laughing now. Karma, I tell ya.

Have you ever seen a food more soothing to the intestinal tract?

Photo attribution: Here


Wish me luck.

Also, tomorrow is Lolly's birthday! I'm so in love with her and so incredibly glad she was born. Leave her a birthday greeting if it suits your fancy. I'm sure she'd love to hear from you.


Saturday, September 15, 2012

Resurrection

All right, I've decided that it's official: I'm taking Friday's off, and instead I'll just be doing FFAQ polls. Who wants to write a post on a Friday night anyway? (This is why you're not seeing my response until now. Sorry to freak people out. My sister just wrote me and was like "um, did you die? You didn't post yesterday." I am alive and well, and am posting my response today as my Saturday post.)

So, in the future, I'll probably cut off the FFAQ votes at midnight on Friday, but I've gotta say, I thought you guys made the poll really excellent, and I absolutely loved the questions. While the resurrection question won, it won by literally one vote against the next question, and another question had only two fewer. So competition was vigorous. Also, I'm happy to report that nobody cheated from what I can tell! (I can see if someone's IP address has voted for the same question twice.) So thanks for that. I think I'm really going to enjoy doing this every week, and I hope you enjoy it too.

All right, on to the winning question (btw, if you ask a winning question and have a blog, I'll obviously pimp it out, but this question came from an anonymous user):

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Poll for tomorrow's Friday's Frequently Asked Question (FFAQ) post. Also, pictures from my hike this morning. UPDATE: Poll closes at 8:00pm PST

Well, the hike was a success, and I didn't even defecate everywhere, which is always a plus when you're climbing to the top of a mountain.

Here are some pictures:


This is me on top of a mountain. Because I climb mountains. It's just something I do. 

Click "Read More" to see the rest and to see the poll:


Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Diarrhea Juice + discussion of commenting UPDATED

Because yesterday's post was pretty heavy and has elicited some intense discussion (read: people flaming each other needlessly) I thought I'd keep it light today. But I do want to talk about comments which I'll do at the end.

So, this house has become bedlam.

The last few days the kids have been sick with a nasty flu

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Not talking about hard things: the real danger to the youth of the church

Since I'm going to be posting daily, I was wondering what to do for today's post, and how I can set up some regular features so that I know what to post on specific days. A couple people reminded me that I've promised in the past to answer questions about Club Unicorn stuff, and while I did that for a while, I haven't done so as much lately. I think answering questions is a great idea for a weekly post. I was going to wait until Friday because I'm cheesy and alliterative and want to have a weekly feature called "Friday's Frequently Asked Question." (I may still do this.) However, I just got a comment that made my jaw hit the floor, and made me realize that today's post must respond to this person's well intentioned but highly mis-informed question.

Before I share this comment,

Monday, September 10, 2012

Posting

Does this ever happen to you?

You get into this bind with blogging where you don't post, then you start to think that you can never post again until you've come up with something truly brilliant to make up for the fact that you haven't posted enough lately.

Except then you can't think of something awesome. So the days keep passing. And pretty soon it's been a week and you haven't posted and you start to feel a little bad about yourself and you wonder why you continue to choose career supplementations that require attributes like: stamina, consistency, non-suckiness, any level of adulthood whatsoever. And you begin to question your life-choices. 

And then you consider shutting down operations. But that only lasts a few moments before you realize that your blog is something you love doing with all your heart. So then you resolve to stop sucking.

That's where I'm at, people.

The part where I resolve to stop sucking.

So, I've decided that what I'm going to do is post every. single. day.

And if it's crap it's crap.

But at least it will be something. And sometimes, it will not suck. And you might like it. 

But the important thing is that I will never get stuck in the vortex where I stop posting and then feel like I can never post again.

And do you know how I'm going to inaugurate this change of pace?

By publishing this sucker, right now, no picture, no read-through, all while Lolly and I sit and watch our program (right now we're watching White Collar). 

See you all tomorrow.

PS--I lied and I not only edited it (old habits die hard) but had Lolly read it and she said "Tell them the story about how as I was putting in the disc for White Collar I was also eating a popsicle, and at one point after the disc popped out because it wasn't being read by the player correctly my brain switched my hands and I tried to take a bite out of the DVD while putting a popsicle into the DVD player."

Done and done. 

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Famous (like Confucius, of course)



Today I was filling out Anna's "back to school" sheet. Of course this was happening five minutes before she needed to walk out the door for the bus, so everyone was in a panic. But I stole away from the chaos for a moment or two to fill it out.

It asked all the standard questions. "What are your child's interests?" (I put that she is interested in stories about her ancestors, and music), and "How does your child act socially?" (I put that Anna used to have social anxiety--really bad, screamy, stressful social anxiety--before pre-school but that she hadn't exhibited those symptoms for a long time.) Good, normal assessment questions.

Then at the bottom it said...