Friday, January 24, 2014

Hey hot mama! Let me empty your bucket!

At the beginning of the school year, Anna, our 2nd grader, started coming home with all of these little notes in her folder.





As a mom who is constantly cleaning out papers from her backpack, I didn't think much of them.  Then one day Anna mentioned the notes in her bucket.

"Your bucket?" I asked.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

COMPETITION (Only Love Vocal Competition) --UPDATED--

IMPORTANT UPDATE:

The voting on this public opinion poll was compromised severely, blatantly and verifiably. I have discontinued this portion of the competition. The contestants have been notified that the winners of the "Only Love" Vocal Competition will be chosen based on the judges' markings (already rendered) as well as any input Sally might have. Those results will, as stated below, be available by the end of this month. The public opinion portion of the competition will not be used in the final tally, and--for anybody playing along at home--was not in any way an accurate reflection of ability or like-ability of the contestants.

Needless to say, I'm pretty disappointed. And, frankly, offended. For me, and for the participants in this contest. I apologize to anyone else who is disappointed, or who feels that someone they love and support was poorly represented in this part of the contest.

I was probably naive to assume that a public opinion poll about a song of this nature could be approached with integrity and honesty.

Lesson learned.

(PS--thanks to so many people that came, listened, and voted in a genuine way. It is much appreciated.)

________________________________________________________________________________

So, remember last year when Sally DeFord visited my blog and encountered this video of me singing Trololo, which somehow led to her deciding to write a song with me, and then it turned into a competition where people submitted their own versions of the song, and it was really, really awesome?

Well, I have the finalists, and it's time to vote on the version of the song you like best. (Voting will take place on the sidebar to your right, below the ad and above the "followers" box.)

These finalists were chosen by a panel of judges who have extensive musical training. I'm proud of all of these finalists and their work and talent.

Online voting can be an interesting thing. While I don't want this to become a "who has more friends on Facebook" contest, there's really not much one can do to prevent people from trying to drive random people they know to get to a page, not listen to the entries, and just vote for the person that sent them.

I hope that if you are here as prompted by someone's (understandable) self-publicity, you will take the time to listen to at least 20 seconds of each entry and truly vote for the one that sounds best to you. These guys really poured their hearts into this, and each person deserves a running chance.

The online voting will only be one component of the final tally, and the winner, first and second runner up will be determined based on various factors. Online voting will close at midnight on Sunday, January 19th. Winners will be announced by January 31st.

Here are the finalists, in alphabetical order by first name. Again, please listen to at least 20 seconds of each entry (which will take two minutes) before making a choice. Also remember that the name of the person singing is above the embedded video, not below.

All right. Go for it. (Remember voting takes place to your right on the side-bar, below the ad and above the "followers" box):

Amiee Erickson



Andrea Reynolds



Cecily Jorgensen



Franchesca Retford



Joshua Watson



Robyn Paskett





Saturday, January 4, 2014

Boundaries in Friendship

About four million years ago, we left a FFAQ poll dangling in the wind. It was a really fun one for me because in the instructions I asked people to do a silly thing in their comments, and it was interesting to see how many people picked up on it as they read the post. (Confession: I would probably have been the type of reader who missed it.)

Anyway, it's time to pick up that thread, dontcha think?

Here was the winning question, posted by Wyochick:

Most typical marriages have some sort of boundaries in regards to the opposite sex (i.e. - in our household, we consider it inappropriate for one of us to go out alone with an opposite gendered friend). How do you handle this situation in your marriage...where its your same gender that you might be attracted to, but clearly need to have some dude friends?


This is a really interesting question. It's probably a good question to explore.

One of the most frequent things people tell me as they process the fact that I am gay--like, really truly gay--is

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Blogolutions

There's no really good way to phrase that, is there? Blogsolutions? Bloglutions? Blutions?

Basically what I'm getting at is that for 2014, I'm setting some goals for my blog.

Ambitious, right?

2013 was an interesting year for The Weed. It was a year of transition. It took this blog from its phase of being about the direct aftermath of my coming out post to... whatever it is now. It was a good year, but I do have some things I'd like to work on and change.

2014 will see a lot of good things. I have things planned, but I don't like sharing the plans because then I feel like a big loser if I don't end up following through with the plans. But let's just say that I have some good things in store--things that I'm excited about. While I plan to talk about the issue of homosexuality still, I also plan on this year to focus more on other components of my life too. More posts about my family and friends. More posts about writing. More posts about the hilariousness and awkwardness of life. Just more posts in general.

I'm also going to do this thing where I allow myself to stream-of-concious sometimes. I have no idea what that will yield. It might be really, really horrible, actually. But it also might be really interesting. It's an exercise in letting go of control and letting my thoughts appear unfiltered and raw. Insecurities, strange thoughts, randomness. I'm excited to see what happens.

I'm focusing this year on really letting go of outside voices and publishing the things that are a true reflection of self. I'm going to try to be less self-editing, and more open and real and authentic. That being said, I also am passionate about making sure what I post is entertaining, thoughtful and articulate. Basically, I want everyone to have a good time when they're here. Including me. I'm hoping 2014 sees a lot of that.

I have other goals. It basically boils down to this: I want to get better and better at blogging. I hope this year sees me really get good at this craft. I want to be better to my readers, and I want to keep promises to them and to myself. I want to be consistent and fun. I want this place to feel like a good, comfortable, reliable space for all of us.

I'm excited for this year of growth and expansion, and I'm so excited to have each you of you along for the ride.

Happy New Year, friends. My hopes for each of you are cheesy and filled with joy and amazing things--such amazing things for you this year. May pain decrease and joy enter in. My there be prosperity and may there be delicious food and good health. May those you love grow closer to your heart, and may each of you become closer to becoming the person you were meant to be.

Thanks for being a part of my life.

Josh