I should be in jail…?

Head over to Stories That Must Not Die and add your voices to an important discussion… or, just tell me if you think I should be in jail or not.

Stories that Must Not Die

Several arrests have been made recently across the United States related to high school kids who were allegedly plotting to launch violent attacks against their fellow students…

The kids kept detailed journals where they idolized the perpetrators in mass-shootings that came before them.  They had amassed stock piles of weapons and ammunition.  They had, in some instances, procured the items needed to assemble pipe bombs.  And, a few had even picked dates with which they hoped to carry out their assault.

Innocent lives were saved.  The suspects were caught in time to perhaps turn their own lives around through intervention and rehabilitation.  This is a win-win.

So, why is it, then, that these cases don’t sit well with me?  They make me nervous.  They make me uncomfortable.

Part of it is that I currently know someone in jail who has written to me about the conditions there.  The inmates are…

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The Problems with Ritual Suicide

Thoughts on weakness, bullying, and parenting… This post could have been written by me. Head over to Stories That Must Not Die and show your support and share your thoughts on the newest article:

Stories that Must Not Die

Usually vomiting makes one feel better, yet sitting in a pool of warm alcohol that I had just violently expelled out of what felt like every orifice on my face only made my head spin faster. Surely, this would get me out of this torture my brother’s drinking friends called Caps.

“Did you just throw up your last round?” asked one of my blurry competitors.

“Yeah, I think I’m done,” I answered the identical twin images in front of me.

“You softie. Now you have to drink two shots in the next round,” yelled another competitor.

Then the whole table chanted a derogatory word at me as they placed their hands on their heads in the shape of female genitalia.

The sad part of the story is that these are men that I considered my friends. For many men, this is a common experience—we anticipate compassion, yet we are…

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I Will Stand With You

I stepped away from the kingdom for a little bit today to visit Hayley’s lil world. I put together a little poem in response to her recent battle against cyber bullying. Go check it out.

Hayley'slilworld

Hayley put out the request for some guest posts and I was compelled to answer.

But, what to write about?  What could I possibly say that held the same power and emotion of her recent guest post for me?  She tackled a touchy subject and really had to dig deep to put the post together.  My post for her needed to at least attempt to be as meaningful…

I deleted about 400 words I had written here… which all amounted to a lot of random ramblings of my jestering mind.  And, yes, the only reason I’m telling you that I deleted some content was so I could use the phrase “jestering mind.”  I’m awesomely silly like that.

Anyway, I’ve given up hope of trying to compete with the guest post that Hayley did for me, and so I’m going to subject you all to another poem.  Please, please, keep the…

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crushed

He stood there and screamed nonsensical jumbles of words at me, and all these years later I can’t remember if he was actually yelling gibberish or if I remember it that way because I wasn’t listening to him and what he said was never of any consequence.

It was lunch and I was eating in the shaded corridor between two buildings.  I’d learned months before that lunch was a time for sitting alone, doing homework, and, most importantly, hiding from my tormentors.  And, as it was approaching summer in the desert, the shady spot was essential for staying comfortable when not tucked away in an air-conditioned classroom.  Still, staying in one place meant that those kids who liked to push buttons, who like to test boundaries, who liked to pants kids smaller than them, who liked to take away school books and throw them in the trash, who liked to be bullies, could find me.

Sometimes they’d pass me by without a word, sometimes they tease me and try to get a rise out of me.  That day, one of them stood on my backpack and yelled at me as I sat and ate my lunch.  His two goons flanked him and laughed as the scene unfolded.  I did nothing.  Half a sandwich in one hand.  A water bottle grasped in the other.  He threw his arms about wildly and did a little dance on my backpack and then he moved on.  I could hear their laughter bouncing off the walls.

It was then that the horror of what had just happened set in.

He stood on my backpack.

The backpack contained the art project I had spent half a semester working on, had finally been graded, and was ready to be taken home: a paper mache mask.  I quickly opened up the pack, my fingers were trembling and I felt a huge swell of hope that somehow it had managed to survive, even when I knew there was no way it could withstand the weight.  My eyes took in the crushed edges, the split crease down the middle, the complete destruction.

I don’t remember how I got there, but the next thing I remember I was crying in the principal’s office, trying to get out the details between sobs.  I don’t remember anything I said then.  I don’t remember anything he said either, but I do remember that the bully was suspended for a week and had to do community service.

It didn’t seem like enough

It still doesn’t.

That art class was one of the classed I enjoyed the most in junior high.  I had looked forward to going to it everyday, to seeing what project we were going to work on next.  After that afternoon it never felt the same, and I never took another art class.

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Written for this week’s Yeah Write:

I took a top row five spot again! Thanks for all the support: