#OscarsSoWhite and Diversity

Every since the 2016 Acedmey award nominations were announced there has been much discussion about racism, and lack of diversity in Hollywood. Many are planning to boycott the awards ceremony and have been voicing their displeasure about the lack of colour amongst the nomonies. I support any movement that opens a dialogue leading to positive change.
We can’t get around the fact that in America (and yes even in Canada and around the world) people are still discriminated solely based on the colour of their skin, their body type, sexual orientation, Religion and their ethnicity. We even talk a little about the fact that those who identify as disabled are not taken in to consideration. “Talk a little” are the three key words in my last sentence.
For today’s blog post I want to expand on this movement and continue to support those who are different. The one thing that has been absent thus far in this discussion going on about diversity is that those with physical differences are once again being overlooked, and ignored. Being ignored by my peers is not a new concept however as I get older, and as we continue to change our tolerance for what is accepted I get more and more frustrated that real change still alludes us.
There was a quote by actor Will Smith that I saw today and it read “This is about children that are going to sit down and watch this show and they’re not going to see themselves represented”. That is a powerful statement and so very true on so many levels. Although I believe that Mr. Smith meant only a very narrow definition as to “representation” it does erase the fact that this statement is true. I’m 34 I’m still waiting to see someone that represents me, I’m still seen as “ugly”.
The whole concept of storytelling, needs to change. We still need to continue to tell the stories that move us, make us laugh, make us think, and cry however the ways we protray those stories visually, needs to be brought in to the 21st century. In order to tell those stories more effectively we need to provide the opportunities for those who play those parts to be protrayed by the best of us. Whether or not that person is visuablly different, cause I hate to break it to everyone, we are all different. 
I’m frustrated that when I was growing up I automatically dismissed becoming an actor because I had a facial difference. I did participate in school plays, I thought I was pretty good, and I enjoyed it. I’m frustrated that when I was growing up, if there was someone with a facial difference they typically held the role of the villain. I’m frustrated that in the event there is an actual role where someone is protrayed not as a villain with a facial difference they use heavy makeup, and protectics to achieve the look instead of reaching out to find an actor with a facial difference. I’m frustrated that when there is a role for anyone who is considered different or disabled it tends to elicit a sense of pity instead of letting that actor shine. A special shout out to NCIS New Orleans for hiring an amazing actor who happens to get around on some awesome wheels.
The Acedemy recently announced sweeping changes to bolster the diversity of their membership in the hopes that future votes will better reflect the global makeup of the world. Here is the press release:
  

Although this is a great first step I hope that they include real diversity and not focus on just colour, gender, or sexual orientation. 
I’m not ignorant to the fact that those with facial differences will probably always get the short end of the stick but I hope that one day when kids sit down to watch these ceremonies they truly do see great role models they can look up to and admire. I hope they can see someone that represents them which creates a spark that changes their life.

My house will turn out to be a sound investment, right?

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I bought my amazing home in 2012, got the keys on February 29th, 2012 and will be celebrating 4 years of home ownership this year, LEAP YEAR! For the most part it’s been awesome; I love the amount of space we have. I love that because we own a bungalow when my mom suffered a stroke she was able to come home instead of into a long-term care facility after she completed her rehab.

 

I love that when I moved in we didn’t have to paint a single room, now after 4 years almost every room could use a new coat of paint. I love that our backyard was fenced in, now after 4 years the fence and gate need to be replaced. I love that our front step was big enough to sit out on, now after 4 years and a mom suffering a stroke we need a safe ramp.

 

The list of things that require my attention with regards to my amazing home seems to be growing by the day. Here is a list:

 

  1. Gutters need to be replaced, when it rains, it pours. No joke, it’s a sheet of water coming down in the front of my home.
  2. Driveway needs to be dug out, re-slopped, and re-paved.
  3. A ramp needs to be installed. We have a very tiny ramp that allows my sister to get mom in and out of the house however if I was alone with my mom I cannot safely get my mom out. This also means I cannot just take her somewhere if I want to.
  4. New stove, the current one takes FOREVER to preheat and the glass top came damaged.
  5. Toilets need to be replaced. Nothing more needs to be said with this.
  6. Bathroom door and one bedroom door needs to be replaced. The master bedroom door never came with a doorknob. I would also LOVE a door, my basement bedroom has a curtain.
  7. I have about 3 cracks in the foundation of my home that need to be fixed. It floods in my closet and in our laundry room.
  8. The fence in the backyard has one section that is falling forward, the post is toast. The whole fence needs to be replaced.

 

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How do other home owners balance these needs? We have already fixed some pluming issues, recently replaced our sub-pump, taken a bad tree out…it just never seems to end when you own a home.

 

We have a quote for a ramp of over $4000, fixing the cracks in the foundation will be roughly $2000, fence looking at $2000…Where are these funds suppose to come from? I try to work overtime when I can but I also need to balance being a caregiver, and I just can’t give up doing my volunteer work. Thought about getting a second job but that doesn’t seem very practical either. I make a decent wage, a living wage which I’m forever grateful for however it gives me just enough to make monthly expenses supporting a family of 4 and not much more to be able to save in case shit goes wrong. I never expected my mom to have a stroke, think that is where it all went to heck, her and I would split the mortgage┬ápayments. Now that I have taken on the full mortgage payments and add that to other payments I have taken on its can be overwhelming. I’ve sometimes taken the stance to just ignoring everything, pretending it isn’t happening….anyone else do that?

 

Why I threw in the towel

Yesterday I posted about my extremely brief foray into online dating, I wrote about how I felt it failed. Let me expand on that today.
I got a lot of great feedback, I also saw some comments suggesting I gave up far too quickly, that I should have stuck it out because not all guys are dicks, or assholes. I do know this, I have met real life guys who are awesome, they’re already taken.
I’m pretty self-aware, I know who I am, I know what my flaws are. One being I’m not willing to compromise what I’m looking for. I’m a very independent woman, I take after my mom in that trait. I know I don’t NEED a guy in my life, that isn’t to say I don’t want one ’cause I do. I know that I would be ok going through life as is, alone, doing my own thing but I do understand the quote:
  

I have this vision of my “perfect” guy (yes I can hear that laugh and snicker) and I won’t settle. It’s not a visual image, lord knows I don’t judge in that department, but it’s more of a emotional image. I want a guy who just fits right in, I want a certain feeling and I can’t get that online.
It’s more my fault than theirs, with online dating I’m always suspicious, always waiting for the other shoe to drop. This is yet another flaw of mine, I’m always poised waiting for the other shoe to drop. I get weirded out easily by guys online claiming to “have a connection” because if I’m truly honest, I don’t feel it and I don’t know how to say that.
I have been told I have unrealistically high expectations when it comes to what I’m looking for. I want a guy who also knows who he is, he has a job (or does volunteer work in the event he can’t work), I want someone who loves animals and music equally, who would attend a hockey game one night, and an art exhibit the next. I want someone who loves camping, skiing, video games and boarded games, also being handy wouldn’t hurt. I don’t want someone much older than me, I know age is only a number but for some reason it’s important to me. 
I didn’t give up online dating because someone told me I was ugly, I did give it up because the potential to be told that on a regular basis is exhausting. I get that in the real world, I get it, don’t need to keep beating that nail on the head. I gave up online dating after a short time because I knew it wasn’t the right outlet for me. I need to interact in the real world, I need to see their facial expressions, hear their tone of voice.
It’s not them, it’s me!

Dating apps + me = no

2016 has begun. I rang it in as I have done so these last few years, we load up on hor d’oeuvres, go our separate ways and 5 mins before midnight gather to open some sparkling wine and watch the ball drop. I also enjoy watching Anderson Cooper & Kathy Griffin’s antics but alas that is besides the point. We rung in the new year, Crystal and I finished our wine while staning in the kitchen chatting then I went back to my room.

   
 I honestly think I’ve seen that Match.com add one too many times as when I got to my room I got some weird notion in my head that I should download their app, so I did. The app itself is easy to use simple questions, easy to upload picture, it worked great. It worked great until you try to do anything then it prompts you for money. I’ve come to the realization that those sites must make a killing, they wanted to charge $131 for 6 month subscription, access, whatever you call it. I won’t lie, I was tempted however I have 2 possibly more cracks in my foundation so really won’t be spending money on crazy stuff like online dating sites.
When I didn’t get anywhere with that I chatted with my friend Karen who suggested PoF aka Plenty Of Fish. This site comes with a bad reputation, it’s not undeserved. I also went with Adam’s (Karen’s BF) recommendation called OkCupid. I had not heard of this one but decided to give it a go. Got my first message on OkCupid not sure what the dude’s real name is but the conversation started out ok. It got clearer however that he was only interested in sex and not in anything else, his questions last of which was “what do you wear under your pants” made me very uncomfortable. I decided to wish him well, and a goodnight and I promptly deleted our chat. He wrote me back shortly after with this:

  
Needless to say I didn’t respond, nor did I respond when he followed up and said “your a dirty dog ruff” although for this one if I had responded it would have been  to correct his spelling and grammar. Back to PoF I got a “hello” message from a guy in my area and after reading his profile and being interested I say “hey” back. You can imagine my shock when his reply read “ur blocked ewww”.
I know my facial difference will make dating a challenge and I know not all guys are assholes however I’ve learned that I’m not ok with being told that I’m ugly on a regular basis in the hopes I will find someone. 
My experience wasn’t all bad, I did have a couple conversations with a couple of guys that went all right. One from around this area who seemed genuine with twin 17 year old daughters. Another who like me has been through some stuff and has some differences (not visible). I had a third one which I learned the most from.
He says his name is Scott, that he is in the U.S military (Army) and he is depoloyed in Nigeria on a peacekeeping mission. My first impression of his profile pic was that he was cute, he was nice. We chatted on and off through the night and today, my instincts were going hey wire. He used the same phrases multiple times but using the exact same language, this creeped me out. I can forgive the spelling and grammar errors as I’m not sure his level of education even though his profile says he is 43. He kept saying “we have a connection” even though we had only been talking for a very brief time and we hadn’t touched on anything serious. To be honest I kept expecting him to ask for money, my instincts told me that he was some kind of scam, so I did what I always do, I consulted a friend got some good advice, didn’t take the good advice and followed my instincts and said goodbye to Scott and deleted the messaging app I was using to communicate with him.
My use of dating apps was very brief. I’m simply not ok with having conversations like that online. I’m always thinking the worst and I don’t know if the “guy” I’m talking with is real or a scam. I get anxiety and I don’t like constantly checking my phone for a message. I’ve disabled the profiles and deleted the apps and that is that.
I know that there are many people who have met online and are in happy healthy relationships, I don’t see myself doing the whole online dating thing. If this means I remain single and never really go on dates, I’m ok with that; maybe I’m ok with being alone. I’m not comfortable at all with cheesy lines from guys whom I don’t know, telling me we really have a connection and want to get serious in the first hour or first day of chatting. I don’t know how it is suppose to work but for me I don’t think it does. I won’t say I gave it a fair shot, stuck with it for only 24 hours or so but I don’t think I will try it again.