Compared to some, I don’t live in a rural area at all. It’s quite suburban in many ways. But that suburbia hasn’t been around quite as long as some other places. And much of the mindset is still very rural.
Take for instance a conversation I had with my riding instructor today. She was telling me about one of the kids’ big horse show and that the judge confused horse A and horse B and pinned them backward. and the judge refused to admit his mistake and everyone around them was astounded at the judge’s ruling, etc, etc. So far that’s all fine. It sounds like the girl really got screwed out of a ribbon she deserved (she earned Champion in her two other classes on the same horse, just to prove the point).
Then my instructor says that the judge was gay. I just kind of blinked at her for a bit, so she went on, explaining how she had noticed it when she saw him judging, but after they talked to him (to confront him about the placement), the other person agreed with her. She was obviously trying to tie being gay to the judge giving a shitty ruling.
I said (heart pounding), that him being gay really didn’t have anything to do with it.
She went on, trying to explain that it was his attitude.
And I said that being gay didn’t give him attitude. He just had a shitty attitude. At which point she dropped the conversation and focused on how unfair it was that the kid got screwed out of a ribbon. Then she went to go do something else, and I groomed my horse and replayed the conversation in my head a thousand times.
I was born and raised in this area, so the mentality doesn’t really surprise me, although this is the first time I’ve run into this type of language from her (although she’s made passing comments that were questionable before). She’s an older woman (63) and was raised in this area. So she embodies that rural area. It’s something you see in a lot of fiction: rural towns don’t like them gays, but they aren’t outright mean to them. Mostly just give them side-eye. And that’s how she is. But being queer and hearing that said was still a shock to the system.
I take heart in knowing that with time and patience, change is happening.
For psuedoLent I gave up chocolate and have been pretty faithful to the sacrifice, though I did have a piece of chocolate cake and a bite of brownie. That’s not really important, but I wanted to share.
Second, after hearing mention of a beauty regime in a book I was reading (Getting It by Alex Sanchez, for those who are interested), I realized that my mother never really gave me beauty tips when I was young, possibly because I wanted nothing to do with it. But really, boys and girls can have nice skin, which is all she would have needed to say to win me over (the characters in the book are all boys, and not all of them are gay). So I decided to attempt this beauty regime and see how it turns out (for those interested, it involves foaming cleanser, witch hazel and oil-free moisturizer). I’ve taken pictures to do “before” and “after” comparison.
Third, I guess…the books I’ve been reading. Still reading Be Last for the youth group and have added on The Art of Happiness “by” the Dalai Lama. Also, I took out Parrotfish from the library which is about a transgendered boy (as in, girl to boy) who is embracing the male side and all the struggles he goes through (a work of fiction, which has peaked my interest in nonfiction of similar, but haven’t settled on anything).
Coming from a rather conservative area, LGBT wasn’t particularly common (or spoken about) when I was a teen. I never really thought about it when I was in school, or if I thought about my attractions I kept them to myself. So when I went to college, my eyes were opened, to say the least. So I still feel like I’m trying to understand some things that other people have understood rather earlier in life, and I don’t know if that means I’m delusional about things or I’m finally coming to understand myself.
I won’t go into details, both because they are personal and because it would be rude (to my family) to make public announcements about things I’m not entirely sure of. Or something. The important thing is I love myself and am comfortable with myself, no matter who I become.
Ignoring the fact that it’s 6 o’clock and I’m writing a blog entry, I’m not a complete loser, I swear.
Most of my time has been spent reading and writing when I’m not at work (or at the barn on weekends). Because I’ve been doing a fair amount (read: loads) of amateur reading on the interwebs, I decided that it wouldn’t necessarily help my writing, so I decided to pick up some books that are in the genre that I write, thus queer YA (although mine aren’t strictly YA or queer or “school stories”). Interlibrary loans are wonderful for this, because my town is not…well I don’t want to say they’re closed minded or anything, but they don’t carry many of these types of books. It kind of makes me wonder how hard it would be for a kid who is questioning to get a book out and read about kids going through this stuff. I wonder how many kids do anyway. Probably only the out ones.
So I’ve been doing loads of reading, and because it’s YA I finish it in a couple days (or a day) which gives me a great sense of accomplishment. I think after I finish the latest book I’ll have to put off more until I finish The Art of Happiness, which I’m looking forward to reading. Reading takes plenty of my time, but the time spent feels so much better spent than watching TV, reading things online, or whatever else I waste time doing. Writing is possibly the only thing that feels more productive, and right now I don’t know about that.
After I woke up from my afternoon nap, I had this deep, thought-provoking realization about my High School life and I was going to write about it. Then I realized it wasn’t really that great, just me realizing I was actually a huge loser in High School, but I acted all tough and pretended I wasn’t. I wonder what I looked like from the outside. I think alot of it had to do with not being able to (or not feeling safe to) talk about what I wanted/give my opinion. I feel less angry now that I’m open with what I want to say, although it’s still a challenge I’m overcoming.
I could probably go on and on about my feelings and such, but that seems boring. I hope everyone enjoys their Saturday.
My friend hooked me up with another Pansy Division CD and I watched their documentary yesterday. Of course today I’m sitting at home listening to it and reading Queer YA Lit and feeling very single.