Wednesday, November 19, 2014

'Tis the Season

Anyone that knows me or is even familiar with my story knows that the holidays are difficult for me.

Historically its right around this time of year my depression grabs hold and takes over.  I have spent 2 or 3 Thanksgivings in a Psychiatric hospital.  Yes, I can't even remember the exact amount of times I have had Thanksgiving dinner in the hospital.

This time of the year my depression is triggered by being alone. Even before my mother died I had been hospitalized I always joked that it was her bad cooking on Thanksgiving that caused me to avoid being home for dinner.  I know many of you may be shaking your head wondering how in the hell can Kurt feel lonely?  I have dozens of people that I could count on to "rescue" me from spending a day alone at home.  But as I always say, I long to have that special someone with to share the holidays.  We could eat hamburgers and onion rings, and I would be just as happy.

I have a few invites for Thanksgiving dinner this year; I've also thought about volunteering to feed those less fortunate at my LGBT Community Center.  I haven't made a decision on what I will be doing that day, at this point I just think of it like any other day, no big deal to me...  I haven't cared about Thanksgiving for almost ten years.  It just isn't an important holiday to me, I always asked mom why with her Native American background we celebrated Thanksgiving.  The only problem is I LOVE to eat!  This year I imagine I'll be having 2 Thanksgiving dinners, one tomorrow; the week before Thanksgiving for my roommate's HIV support group, and one on Thanksgiving Day wherever I land.  One of the difficult things about having multiple invites is you have to turn down some of those invites.  I hate to do that to friends, so sometimes I just feel that staying home is the best way out of that situation.

Christmas..  That's a different story for me.  Over the last several years, I have gotten used to the fact that Christmas is not what it used to be for my family.  I wrote about it in this blog titled "Christmas Memories".  Still in my current financial situation gifts are not something I can even attempt to buy, not even for the people that are closest to me and do the most for me.  Luckily I have found some unused Christmas cards of my mothers and cards I never used that I can send to friends.  I think Ill write some personal letters or blog posts about some friends telling them what they mean to me as a gift.  My feelings and love are all I can share.

Recently I was asked to give a presentation to a group about "Holiday Blues" It's a difficult time of the year for many people.  If you have an extra few dollars this year, there are things you can do to help.  Send a friend a handwritten holiday card, or if you have an extra place at the dinner table, if there is anyway you can include a friend that may be feeling lonely, sometimes just being invited can change the way someone feels about the holidays.  But also keep in mind that there are times that people do just want to be alone on these days.  It never hurts to pick up the phone to check in with someone.

I have lost three friends this past year, and I think about their family members who will have an empty space at their table this holiday season.  I am truly fortunate to have such caring friends.  So wherever I decide to land this year, I will be thinking about David, Doug and Robert and each of their loved ones.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Which is worse, politics or religion? SURVEY SAYS.....POLITICS!

You Can't Sit With Us

I didn't grow up with religion in my life, so I don't really have strong opinions about that topic, although I do have some beliefs but I keep them mostly to myself.   For people that have opinions that I don't agree with about religion I don't get in their face about them.  I have friends of all faiths...which something just struck me..  Do Atheists have faith?   Im sure they do..  Not faith in God because they don't believe in God.   But Im sure they have faith in something....  See, like I said I don't know a lot about religion.   When I have questions about religion I have one person I turn to to answer those questions and 99.9% of the time he knows the answer to my question.

Politics.... WOW if you really want to get someone worked up start talking about politics.
Some of you may remember an idea I came up with back in 2012 to protest a politician at our San Diego Gay Pride Parade.  Three people and a $50 donation from someone that was then a stranger  to me created a successful campaign that reached tens of thousands of people via social media, bloggers,   word of mouth, The New York Times, even our local newspaper who supported this politician quoted me in their paper regarding the protest.

Even though we had a very successful campaign and that person lost their bid for mayor there was a lot of collateral damage.  To say things got ugly would be an understatement.  There were accusations, threats, fake Twitter and Facebook accounts created by people that didn't like what we were doing used to attack us.   It was a very dark time for me personally.

After that I decided to back away from politics.  This mid term election this same candidate ran for a seat in congress.  It wasn't my district so I couldn't vote for or against him anyway.  Like I told people "Not my circus, not my monkeys"   I did however donate to his opponents campaign a few times in very small increments of $5 each time. But still I held back from saying much about this in public forums.  It was a tight race and there was a lot of tension and ugly campaign tactics from both sides (in my opinion) during this time.

What has greatly saddened me is to see how much our community....and we can call that community the LGBT community, the LGBT Ally community and or the Democratic community (I am registered as no party affiliation) so often turns on themselves.  That last special election we had to replace the mayor we had elected was when I first noticed this.  I didn't like either one of the candidates and didn't want to vote for either one.  I WAS BLASTED from my "own people" for saying I didn't want to vote because I didn't like either candidate.  I was told, "vote for the lesser of two evils"  Well thats what we did the first go around and that is exactly why we needed to have a special election to vote for a new mayor.  Turns out on Election day earlier this year I was in the hospital recovering from surgery the day before  and I wasn't able to vote anyway.  Since then I have become a early voter by mail.

In these last few days after the majority of ballots have been counted ,and the candidate "we" didn't want conceded,  people have been blowing off some steam and posting questions as to where this person should move to, a GoFundMe campaign has been created to purchase a one way ticket for he and his partner. (those funds raised will actually be given to another charity)   But there are some hard core activists that think this is a waste of time, we need to start focusing on 2016.   Hey great, Im glad that there is that much dedication to the process, but DO NOT come to me acting like everyone should have the same exact feelings as you do.   Talking down to people and taking on a condescending attitude will do nothing more than turn people off to the process even more than they already are.  In San Diego we have extremely poor voter turnout, so that fact that people are even talking about politics even if its tongue in cheek is great to me!

I will ALWAYS stand behind what I say, but if you twist my words and try to tell people that I said something completely different than what I did, and try to make me look foolish in the process (YES Ms LP  ONCE AGAIN, Im talking to you)  I will call you out on it!

So like I said these people with condescending attitudes and superiority complexes can miss me with their bullshit.   Because the more I feel scolded the more I back away, and after being in this city for over 20 years I DO have a voice, I have ideas and I have been pretty dang effective in my past efforts.  So keep preaching to the choir and you will soon find yourself singing alone.