I love Charles Krauthammer so much that I’m going to tell you all about Charles Krauthammer

 

I love Charles Krauthammer. Every time I see him on TV I applaud him. He is a commentator of epic proportions. He is the best commentator I’ve ever seen. I have few people that inspire me, that I try to emulate, and Charles Krauthammer is one of them.

I’ll try to be a bit more objective about this, if I can. The reason why people are attracted to Charles Krauthammer is because Krauthammer has an uncanny, signature ability to provoke thoughtful discussion without emotion. Dare I say, he is monotone, but there is absolutely nothing boring about Charles Krauthammer!

In all my years of watching Charles Krauthammer I have never, Never, NEVER, seen him provoke a fight on live television. To credit him further, Krauthammer takes his abilities one step further by presenting his argument and logic so well that commentators that love to provoke, love to fight, won’t fight him.

One of my favorite music quotes from The Who, comes to mind –

“I don’t need to fight. To prove I’m right.”

Krauthammer demonstrated himself once again last night. Against Tucker Carlson, a man who doesn’t skip a beat when he lambastes his guests on primetime television. But with Krauthammer, he acquiesces……, why? Because everybody acquiesces to Krauthammer! It’s what Charles Krauthammer does.

Instead the norm with Tucker, I’m sorry I’m simply stating what I observe…., a pained expression which can only be described as someone bearing down to push a turd out –

tucker carlson constipated face 3

tucker 6

tucker carlson constipation face 5

 

Tucker’s forehead softens, not pained, easy. It’s easy listening to Charles Krauthammer. He even purses his lips in deference to him, when he normally laughs, smirks, and talks over his guests.

kraut with tuck

 

kraut with tuck 2

 

Will you let me tell you a little more about him? Growing up, Charles Krauthammer wanted to be a doctor, and he was handsome.

charles k 2

 

While in medical school, he had a freak accident in the pool, you know the kind of accident you feel never happens, where people dive head first into shallow water.

diving no

 

Charles Krauthammer is a man with a spinal cord injury. He finished medical school in spite of this accident. While lying supine on the hospital bed he would ring his nurse to turn the page for him as he has limited use and function of his arms.

The general public knows very little about Krauthammer’s past, every time I bring it up to people they are surprised. He conceals it well, he is an absolute inspiration. Even the cover picture of his book, Things That Matter, the image I’m certain is doctored and staged because I don’t know if Krauthammer can write, I see physiologic flexion and adduction of his fingers, which tells me he has little functional use of the intrinsic muscles in his fingers.

charles k 1

When he speaks, he takes big chest and belly breaths. He has no innervation of his rib intercostal muscles, so his big breathing substitutes as Krauthammer breaths and speaks with his upper cervical muscles and diaphragm. One may say Krauthammer has an impairment in his capacity to breath, but there is no impairment that anyone can see. I don’t see a single thing wrong about him. He is wonderful.

 

 

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I think it’s time for the Ivory Tower to come down now

ivory tower

 

I believe they want to do good, they are not malicious, they are not evil. I have friends in academia and hold them in very high regard. I have much respect for what they do. No buts!

The conversation about student loans cannot be had without a concomitant conversation about our institutions. I say the words “institutions” and “our” similar to public workers and the government. Who are they supposed to be working for? Serving?

Us.

The students, I say. I have met one, just one man that called out the University from within. His words are immortal to me. They spoke so very loudly to me as I sat there consuming the last bits that were my last year in graduate school. He used the following words to describe our degrees –

Upgraded (in a bad way)

 

Expensive

 

Too much, too long (years of school)

 

When they pay based on experience, anyway.

 

When discussing matters such as this with instructors, professors and academic folk it is palpable how uncomfortable they are when the conversation turns critical on University itself. They aren’t used to criticism. Students aren’t critical they are too young. People with even a little life experience are no longer idealistic, and that’s exactly when most begin to ask questions.

Another wise old man, George Carlin, said that we should question everything, so that’s what I’m doing!

george carlin

Let’s talk numbers. I like numbers, they are like a scale. They don’t lie. I paid $8,500 block tuition per semester which was about $75,000 total. This is a base rate. Fees, interest, and that 1K in grad plus loans I took out to go to Key West aren’t included.

Tuition at that same University is now $11,500, which is a 35% increase over 6 years, or a 5.9% increase per year, which is about double inflation. Now that doesn’t make Universities look bad per say, but it don’t make the Universities look good.

The worst part is that the children have no idea what is going on. I didn’t either. To the Universities credit they say the numbers are there, they are public domain, they are no secret. They’re right.

And the students have no idea what is happening. I once learned in a developmental psychology class that full brain maturation which is mature thoughts, higher reasoning and maximum development occur at the age of 25. Most children entering graduate school are 22 when they consent to move forward with payment.

I went to a meeting this week and I don’t think I’ll be going anymore. I don’t have it in me to tell the students the truth, it shouldn’t come from someone like me I am their peer I am young. It is my personal opinion that our Universities are complicit in the student loan problem and our financial insolvency. The government is like Rocky breaking thumbs but it’s always the slick guy in a nice coat and a driver that is the mastermind behind the operation-

rocky 5

rocky 4

rocky 3

rocky 2

rocky 1

I believe the student is 100% responsible. It doesn’t matter that the loan is outrageous it doesn’t matter if you are unable to make payments. The paperwork is clear there’s a lender and there’s the person that took out the loan and the person that took out the loan is 100% responsible for paying it back. And the Universities are complicit. I believe our Universities have upgraded degrees in part to lengthen the amount of schooling needed to become certain professionals. Lengthened degrees means more time in school, means more tuition for these schools. With base tuition from 55 students the school made in three years $4,207,500. The word egregious, is an understatement.

I also came down hard on an instructor. I told him that these kids are good kids and that the overwhelming majority will carry this debt upwards of 25 years. That is a lifetime. These kids will marry, become parents and pay for their own children’s education while at the same time paying for their own. They are going into a financially insolvent avalanche, I cry!

But from within the Ivory Tower, there is no cry. To their credit members in academia welcome conversation, but it must be done with delicacy, deference, and absolutely must extricate the University from any wrong doing.

It’s kind of like someone walking into a police station and asking for guaranteed immunity. It only makes that person, that thing look all the more culpable, responsible, and involved in the issue.

A conversation about student loans cannot be had without a concomitant conversation about tuition, careers, and career history. Who sets tuition? Why do Universities look like empires? Why did a career in physical therapy go from a bachelors to a doctorate in 20 years? What is the justification for a 5.9% increase in tuition every year?

This is when they get sassy with me, and I like sass! The instructor told me that the tuition is up front, when I am telling him that students don’t know and don’t realize how not good it’s going to be for them. He said that maybe, maybe I want to be coddled, that  I just want my hand held. So I asked him –

“Is this how you speak with your students?”

This is an instructor who said this, someone that is supposed to act, behave, and advocate for students. I egged him on, I’ll be honest. Who needs friends when you can have kick ass conversations? And what about the humor in this? It honestly looked like Scrappy going after King Kong, just saying –

king kong and scrappy

The conversation only reinforces what I perceive to be true about academic people. They love academia. They welcome funding and grants readily and copiously. They don’t want to leave the Ivory Tower, it’s a one-way entrance with no exit. They have a vested interest in maintaining their positions because of marked competition. The Ivory Tower isn’t so unyielding when you really look at it.

The most surprising part of the conversation was when the Instructor told me that young professionals such as myself are culpable. Young professionals, he said, play equal parts in the financial mess because we don’t advocate for higher reimbursement rates from insurance companies. I told him that there’s no way no flipping way that an insurance company would inflate reimbursement to match the increasing cost of higher education. Because I’m with GT, insurance reimbursement ain’t NEVER going up!

I felt unsettled by the conversation, not for me, but for the bright-eyed, fresh faced young ladies I met that night. I’ve won the lottery of a lifetime with my choices, but what about them? Who protects them?

 

It’s difficult being an artist in this busy overstimulating world

Tree Artist

 

 

I’ve cut my hours back. This is a big deal. I could make more money and I’m choosing not to. There is a clarity after years of spending time with myself. And even more with actually doing so. The question, “What do I want to do with my life?” I think is most difficult to answer. I think it’s light years more difficult than finding a mate, falling in love, and getting married. From what I recall, being in love was quite fun. This, is not.

Artists need copious amounts of unstructured down time to create art. An artist’s ideas are fleeting, fluttering. What’s difficult is not the ideas themselves, so much as finding the time to get them down from the sky. It takes patience, solitude, and I think a lowering of sensory stimulation in order to capture the ideas. The problem isn’t the artist, it’s the environment.

We live in a sensory stimulating world. Yes, we do. Phones that beep, ring for the stupidest of reasons. Everybody needs me! Wants me, all the time. More often than not, it’s for menial bitch work. Everything feels like a job, something to do, but the strong artist in me knows and understands that long term joy and fulfillment is the route I want. I pursue that route and idiot people question my logic, like I’m the one that has a problem! You know what I say?

 

Get out of my way.

 

It’s my turn. I’ve waited four years to do this, and as soon as I reduce my hours it seems like everyone wants to swarm in and take a big bite out of me. Between turning down hours at the nursing home to slathering cream on my foot fungus to throwing a raucous bachelorette party for my sister, I can’t believe it would even be construed that a little girl is selfish for living life on her terms.

The problem is not me. I think it’s everyone else. Do I sound like dick? God I hope so.

Everyone looooooves telling a young single lady what to do. The reason I say young is because GT told me I was young – Thanks!

I wonder if males of my age (30) feel the same way. Do you feel like everyone is up in your grill? Your space? Telling you what to do and when to do it? I can hardly sleep shower and shit on any given day, it is COMPLETELY out of the question that I would persuade someone else how to live their life.

And it’s not just questions like “How are you doing?” or “What’s new?” For it behooves the general idiot public to ask me bulls-eye personal specific questions like –

 

            How are you going to make money?

 

            What are you going to do after student loans?

 

            Are you dating?

 

            When are you going to date?

 

            How many jobs do you have?

 

            How many hours do you work?

 

 

How about, None, NONE of that is your Goddamn business! How about that?

Ok, I’m done.

 

One of the best things I’ve ever done is to think for myself and listen to my body

 

I can’t say it’s the best thing I’ve ever done, because I already know what’s the best thing I’ve ever done.

When I think about where this comes from I think about my father. He always encouraged my sister and I to think for ourselves. When we were children we did not watch conventional shows filled with shock, awe and getting prizes. My father always facilitated adult logical discussion at the dinner table. He was open ended, not emotional and questioned our logic every step of the way to ensure we could properly form arguments. I think that’s where my interest in debate comes from, it comes from my father.

I see so much dissatisfaction in the world and I try to make sense of it. It makes no sense to live in modern times and live like robot. I feel like “survival of the fittest” takes on a whole new meaning. The person that survives now is the person that realizes that in many ways we live in a toxic environment, one that sets us up for failure instead of success. The only appropriate approach is to pull away and think for yourself. Except everyone is too busy for that.

I’ve thought a lot about my talents, my body and what I’m capable of. I know this body. I know what makes it go, I know what makes it tick. That’s why I’ve made it this far, it’s because I stopped commanding and I started listening. I trust my body to do what it can do.

But the issue is that most people don’t get there. They don’t get to that point where they have even baseline competency for their bodies. It’s no secret that people have serious issues regarding mental health in this country. And yet we have every treatment and therapy known to man. I stopped listening to people in general and my goodness what an amazing decision that was. I hear what people say but I don’t listen. Other people don’t know what it’s like to be in this body, they don’t know what tugs at my heart strings. They don’t know what makes me bleed makes me sing makes me weak…, therefore they are in NO position to comment what kinds of positive decisions I should be making for myself. What say you?

I’ve listened to myself. It would help if we stopped abusing our bodies. Our bodies our exquisite and the product of millions (or thousands?) of years of evolution. You’re telling me that it can’t figure itself out?

Yes, it can!

I knew I had to be single and alone while paying down my student loans (Apeshit Part 3)

 

Part One

Part Two

(If you can’t glance don’t even bother reading what’s next. My stories require active participation.)

 

I was having a great conversation with my sister in the car yesterday. So great, so personal, you don’t even know! Except you will know, hhhmmm, because I’ve (partly) decided to write stories that can only be described as gritty, raw and personal. These are fantasy stories with verbatim details and with the explicit purpose of calling people out. It’s a call out, people. It’s part of the fun! Are you having fun?

 

My sister was dubious as she questioned my logic and decision making over the last couple of years. I told her that I needed to end my relationship with the love of my life because that was the only way for me to succeed in paying down my student loans. This was the first I was telling her my true sentiments. She could not believe my logic because surely there must have been a way to salvage the relationship. “Why were you so extreme about it?” She asked me. “He could have helped you,” she told me.

 

I think in life everyone has their path and decisions to make. Everyone has their quirks and comeuppances waiting for them, these are mine.

 

Many moon ago I was the kind of girl that always had a boyfriend. I wasn’t particularly sentimental about any of them because I had so many. Too many!

 

It was like Seabiscuit people as soon as I could get on that horse I did. They were fun. Boys are fun. I swear they are just like kittens amusing to play with and I would certainly do it more if they didn’t make me itch so much. The kittens, I mean.

 

But around the age of 22 was when I started questioning my own behavior. I was on a beach in Nicaragua and I was alone. I was prolific with my reading and writing at the time. I would read an entire book in a day, which is most impressive for someone with such an aloof and flighty personality like myself.

 

The book I read that day was by Gioconda Belli, called The Country Under My Skin-Alfred A. Knopf 2003 Gabriele Wilson

 

She wrote about her country’s history regarding the Sandinistas and her participation in what was a political revolution in her home country of Nicaragua. She also wrote about women, gender roles, female rebellion, and what the modern woman wails to become – The strong independent woman. The kind of woman that doesn’t need a man, except she always had a man! What a joke as I read, turning the pages feverishly. Every chapter was about this man or that man or that lover. I counted how many pages she was technically single in the entire book (less than 20) and that’s when I turned my brash flashlight on myself –

Yeah, and how long have you been single? How many pages of your life have you been without a man?

 

I’d had my fun with boys, and I was positively systematic about it. Men provide a protection and defense that I believe has an evolutionary purpose. Whenever I was (for the short time I was) without a man I felt without protection and defenseless. A woman without security and safety will wreak havoc on her body, this I know. Plus, they can come in real handy when you need to pass Calculus.

And Physics. Two.

 

So it was on that beach in Nicaragua when I first heard a calling that if I were to truly progress and move forward as a woman as a person! That I would need to go it alone. It isn’t just about the student loans, it’s what the loans represent. These loans represent a time where I am the master of my fate I am the captain of my soul. I’ve declined all assistance both financial and emotional from boys. This November will mark four years (symmetry and symbolism are important to me can’t you tell?).

In pursuing this outrageous goal this meant cutting men out of my life. No kissing, no sexing, ZIP. I knew that if men were too close that I wouldn’t change. People won’t change their habits until they’re force to change.

This is what the modern woman wants, many women wish to be strong independent women and I think that means different things for different women. This is what it meant for me – I’d spent a decade leaning on guys and I wanted to see what I could do. Is this ballsy? I don’t know. I don’t think I’ve got balls, I think it’s better to say that I’ve got Wood.

 

Thanks for reading 🙂

 

Apeshit, Student Loans, Part Two.

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As an artist my job is to take you to my world. I am a dreamer, this is my fantasy world and in my fantasy world, anything goes. My stories are gold and the contents of them are thoughts and ideas that I’ve been sitting on for years. I don’t write about something that’s happening in the present. I write about what happened a long time ago. Those stories, those characters, those ideas, those relationships that are supposed to be dead. They’re not dead in my fantasy world, anything goes.

 

__________________________________________________

 

 

Why am I thinking about my student loans now that I am on the doorstep of finishing? I don’t know – I guess because in the end, you start thinking about the beginning.

 

Spring of 2012 was a beautiful time for me. I was a fantastic student, enjoying my life incessantly, and I was very much in love.

 

My DPT class was given the task of presenting on a topic of our choice for five minutes. So I thought about it and I thought about it and I thought about it some more. I spent hours drumming up ideas with sass, character and personality and in that logic and in that spirit I created a character and I called her –

 

Chef Angelita

 

My little chef wore a yellow apron. Her hair and makeup were clean and neat. Everything I said, every step I took even the way I looked directly at the audience was meticulously planned in advance.

 

Chef Angelita cut an onion in front of the class. My class was definitely amused. I could feel the love and I still do. I knew that I’d done a decent job I wouldn’t say amazing but not terrible but it was my professor that said of his own free will that day –

 

“You are adorable. You need to be on TV.”

 

I had never had a teacher say anything complimentary of me, especially something like THAT. “My sister is supposed to be the smart one, not me,” was one of the many things I told myself as I dragged my feet on the hot concrete and walked the long route home.

 

What joy I felt in that moment thinking about my future was also ominous. Chef Angelita could care less about things like personal finance, careers and student loans. She lives to cook for her perfect man. She has the perfect man, present tense, and she is the perfect woman and the reason why she is the perfect woman is because, she has the perfect man.

 

I birthed Angelita that Spring of 2012, and in that same time Angela Wood was conceived. Not like Angelita understands anything, she’s totally oblivious playing in her garden.

 

(Yes, I am writing about dual characters, pay attention!)

 

Angela Wood knew better. Angela Wood knows better and like Spock –

 

spock

Wood is a character motivated entirely by logic. She is not motivated by emotion. Emotions are not logical. “Baking pies and pleasuring your man will not dig your way out of your student loans, Angelita” …… – So you know what Angelita says to Angela Wood?

 

“Shut up.”

 

I was in complete denial with student loans until exactly one year before graduation. I heard the train a-coming and it frightened me. I could feel it in my bones that it was coming for me.

 

And you know I knew that I’d led a nice life. I knew that I’d delayed adulthood and responsibilities. A nice life a nice girl from a nice part of town, and I knew that I couldn’t get the job done. Listen I know what I am and I know what I’m not. Rich kids don’t know how to work hard. Rich kids aren’t tough.

trump kids

 

Rich kids have every ambition in the world and no actual work ethic to go with it. It’s just not possible that someone like me put her head down took the hit swallowed her pride and then in her lowest moment, climbed out.

 

That’s why I say Angela Wood got the job done, because I, Angela Marcotte, sure as hell didn’t.

 

Thank you for reading

🙂

I don’t believe what Kathy Griffin is going through has anything to do with women’s rights

kathy griffin DT head

 

 

I hear these words a lot – women’s rights, gender rights, gender discrimination, and frankly, I believe women can be frivolous when discussing topics such as this. The basic question is there and that is –

Are women discriminated against in this country simply for being women?

I don’t have an answer. I think it’s more complicated than just a yes or a no, but Kathy Griffin screwed up big time when she posted a picture of herself holding the head of our decapitated President and then she says this two seconds later–

“There’s a bunch of old white guys trying to silence me, and I’m just here to say that’s wrong. You don’t have to like me, but you shouldn’t silence a comic.”

And that’s where she loses me. She was not silenced. She is not silenced. Her brand of comedy is brash and rude. She lives on the edge with her humor, I think most comedians do. This time, she went over the edge. I don’t think this has anything to do with women’s rights, or old white guys trying to “silence” a female comedian. She used her free speech, went too far, and now she’s going to have to wait out this storm because we live in an internet justice era and the public can be quite harsh when dealing with matters such as this.

 

Where this new wave of feminism has lost me is where women cry out about equal rights when there’s no issue, like Kathy Griffin. I have conversations about women, gender roles, and rights all the time. I think it’s a fascinating topic, one that I’ve been encouraged to be more public about. One of my biggest gripes about my profession stems from the view point, the world view, of a woman. A traditional woman. I can see why women of that mindset may need to band together in my profession, because our interpretation and opinions of it can be totally different from those interpretations and opinions of men.

I don’t believe women are women anymore in this country. That’s what Angelita thinks. That’s what Angelita believes. Would you believe me if I told you that women born in the 1910s, 1920s did not drive? I can’t say all of them, no, but certainly a chunk, yes, enough to have me write about it. These women did not feel resentment, jealously nor contempt for the fact that they didn’t drive and when I broach this topic with millennial women, the liberals and feminists look at me with disbelief. They don’t believe me! They believe all women want to do everything, all the time! And when they can’t, it isn’t because of some intrinsic deficit or character flaw, No! It’s because the patriarchy weighs its heavy hand upon us, and it’s the patriarchy and men that bring us down.

In 2017 in the USA a woman can drive, speak, work, vote, and go out in public by herself. In this country a woman can speak her mind, but that’s not to say there are no consequences because there are. When she crosses a line, it may blow up on her. Not because she’s a women, but because that’s what generally happens when you publicize an image that is inherently disturbing and ugly to its core.

I think it behooves women to know the difference between discrimination, and just poor behavior.