Monday, October 17, 2005

“Two Postings Diverge on a Blogger's Page, and Sorry I Could Not Travel Both...”
By Michael Sherrillo

I am torn between two thoughts right now on which to write upon, a brief encounter which has enchanted my imagination to the point of a fixative delirium, and an article I read on sex trends in young adults… decisions decisions. Maybe I have time for both…
I’ll try to stat with the concrete article; maybe it will give me a chance to regain a little of the composure which has left me for the last 24 hours.

So apparently, teens are having more guilt free sex at younger ages, the norm now being around 15. I don’t see a problem with that. The problems with sex are reproduction. Psychologically, I don’t think that kids that age are capable of being good parents really, or of making the best choices for themselves or their potential new offspring. However, the article relates current sexual activity to the availability of birth control, especially for women, and basically says that since women no longer bound to reproduction, they able to experience a sexual freedom which has previously only been granted to men. I whole heartedly support that freedom. If we are to truly have an equal society, then we should be able to shrug off the genetic dispositions which have been preventing it for so long, condoms helped free men from STD’s, while still placing the potential burden of reproduction on women, the birth control pills has now freed women from that, just as Viagra has given the elderly a second chance at discovering a sexual identity. With the potential dangers now mitigated, why shouldn’t people who are at an age to explore their sexualities be allowed? If “mistakes” do occur, then there are medications and treatments for several of the more common STD’s, and abortions are a legal option for those unwilling to have children yet, or ever. I understand a little more clearly the importance religion played, with its emphasis on sexual purity till marriage, and I think that before such contemporary options were available to a majority of the populace, then these activities would have had detrimental impacts on society. But in the same way that the danger of eating pork has been changed by science and progress since biblical times, so now have the dangers of sex.

We now live in an era where men and women, young and old, can discover themselves, their feelings and desires, and embrace their individuality and discover what it is that makes them happy as autonomous human beings. Legislation which supports self discovery and awareness I wholly support, as long as it doesn’t invade on a persons ability to choose the life and happiness they desire. I believe contraceptives should be available to young teens, just as I feel every car should come equipped with a breathalyzer which prevents a person from starting their vehicle if they are drunk. I don’t think teaching abstinence is the solution, just as prohibition wasn’t a solution in the early part of the 20th century. Laws need to start understanding human psychology instead of trying to change them.

People keep arguing about how the “innocence” of youth is being lost at younger and younger ages, but why is that bad? I don’t wish that I was a na├»ve and unknowledgeable or experienced person, I crave experience, and it is that which helps me grow as a person. This Victorian mentality of innocence was once forced upon women, and if we learned anything from the Women’s Rights movement, it is that this kind of behavior isn’t welcomed by the people is represses, and should be considered socially unacceptable. Yet because we silence children’s voices, legislatively denying them the rights to participate in the political process, their feelings go unheard. Only the parent's wishes matter. If we don’t want our government to be a monarchy, denying it citizens the rights we all crave, why do we subject every one of our member to such a state for the first 18 years of their lives. Young people are much more knowledgeable, responsible, and intelligent than we give them credit for. The maturation process should be one in which we guide them into the world as potential equals, exposing them to reality, both the good and the bad, so that they are able to understand it, experience it, and be ready for it when they are left to face it on their own. We hurt only our future when we try to shelter and hide children from the realities of life. They are individuals, with needs, feelings, and rights, that shouldn’t be that different from our own.

Friday, October 14, 2005

My Girlfriend Doesn't Get Me
by Michael Sherrillo

Passion. Romance. Two terms which are inextricably linked in most any relationship. Except this one. I feel like we are on opposite sides of a wheel. I don't feel especially romantic without a lot of sex; she isn't especially interested in sex without more romance. And so we sit like two kids on a teeter-totter, stuck in equilibrium, unmoving. I can understand her perspective, but the problem is that with the limited resources/time at my disposal considering my custody situation, I can only be so romantic... but I have been trying, sexy love poem here, cute notes there, trying to just be happy and want to cuddle every time I see her... but I just don't feel the same reciprocative push from her end. And I don't think she really understands... in those post coital periods, I want nothing more than to hold her and cover her with kisses and affection, sex is the closest thing I have to a truly deep and spiritual act, and afterwards I feel like I'm basking in the afterglow of communicating with god. I am Moses, descending from the Mount, tablets of ultimate truth in hand, face red and burnt from being so near to such holiness.
I dream of just staying inside her, curled up together, skin against skin, and just talking or kissing and nuzzling before drifting off to sleep together... but that doesn't happen.
Instead, it's a few seconds of breathing, then she wants to dash away and clean up, and then she pulls on cloths and wants to leave or go to bed or something else besides just be together and cuddle. And it really sucks, because that’s almost my favorite part, the post act. It makes me feel like she is disgusted by all the sexy wetness and nakedness which I love so much, like she can't wait to detach herself from me and pretend that it all never happened.
And let me segue to romance for a second. She wants to talk about me not making an effort. Lets not, for a moment, mention her lack of any significant desire to put anything more than an occasional "sesh" into our sex life, while avoiding some of my favorite things, like the previously mentioned post cuddle, or other more explicit acts. Let’s talk about her romantic effort. There really aren’t any. No letter, hell she never even writes back when I send her emails, excepts a few sentences, or if I do send her a poem or a long letter, she doesn't even acknowledge it, I have to ask her if she even got it, and then its just, “did you like it?”, "yeah" and that all she has to say. But she can talk about a song for hours and listen to it for days... but when it comes to us, she seems deaf-mute half the time about her feelings and about showing and expressing any romance/desire/passion. When do I get to be swept off my feet a little, or surprised, or taken care of? When is my turn to be on the receiving end? Where are my letter and poems of love, where are the song lyrics that make her think of me? She talks all this stuff about how I don't communicate... well I could use a little communication from her as well. Not just about problems, but about good stuff. Gush to me about you and me and us a little, because otherwise I don't think you feel it. Then, she dismisses all the effort I do try to put into the relationship when she says things like, "there isn't any romance". Well, she could try putting a little into it as well. I give her most of my money; she hasn't even gotten me some socks, which I asked her to pick up over a month ago (since I am not allowed to go out, the custody thing again). Even that would have been a nice little thing she could have done for me.
I'm getting a little out of hand, and just venting at this point. All I mean to say is that I do understand her feelings, but I don't feel like she understands mine, or like she really takes them into consideration. Nothing means more to me than her happiness... unfortunately, I feel like nothing means more to her than her happiness either, at least not mine. And so we are where we are, stuck. And no matter what I do, I can't help but feel like she is pushing me away, or like she is simply drifting away herself. And I have no idea what to do anymore, except maybe just let her go... I want this to work, but I want her to want it to work also, and to put some effort into “us”, because this indifference I can’t help but feel is breaking my heart.

Post Script 1pm: and now, a few hours after writing this, after having vented my feelings, I feel great, I feel happy and secure, and remember that I am totally in love with this girl and want/hope to spend the rest of my life with her. Sometimes, I just need an outlet to get whatever negative thoughts and feeling are stuck inside me out and away so I can look at my life more clearly. I just get to emotionally close to the trees and can't see the forest. Sure we have problems, and we always will, but I am happy with her, and can't imagine my life without her. She is the partner I want to continue to grow and evolve and change with. And I love her with all my heart.

Withdrawal Dreams
by Michael Sherrillo

I usually don't remember my dreams. That’s not in the usual way most people have of remembering that something was going on and just not being able to recall it. My head hits the pillow and what feels like 30 seconds later, I'm awake and it's morning. No weird sensations, no vivid feelings I just can't quite grasp, nothing. Fade to black, and then it's time to rise and shine.
At least that’s what usually goes on. And then I became poor. I should qualify that, I've always been poor, but usually never broke, and never for this long. So, with only 8 dollars in my account for the past week, I just can't bring myself to buy a pack of cigarettes. Naturally I've been going through the withdrawals for the past few days. Which aren’t as bad as everyone seems to say. I feel desire, I want one, but I'm not shaking-screaming-going-to-die-if-just-just-don't-get-one-
I just miss it, in the same way you miss a friend who is on vacation for a week. But my dreams... woooooaaaaah... they have been something else. Lights, colors, people, places, plotlines dripping with drama and emotion... it's like some weird independent movie which is so obscure and personal that only I truly understand all the symbolic meaning and depth. Sleep has become like an acid trip since I stopped smoking. And I've found myself trying to sleep in a lot more. It's really fun, the second I close my eyes, even if it's only for a 15 or 20 minuet nap, I have the coolest scenes start playing on the movie screen of my eyelids. This makes me kind of happy, because I can enjoy not smoking almost as much as I enjoy smoking. My life may be mundane, but it's the little joys I can find, like tiny gems on a long wide beach, that make it seem so very precious to me.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Thoughts on Prop. 73
by Michael Sherrillo

Until the day I turned 18, I was not a child first and a boy second. I was born a boy, just as I was born with blonde hair and blue eyes and fair skin. That the state considered me a child was simply a temporary category. The same goes for girls, they are born females, that they are children is incidental. The rights that women have should be granted to all women, not just adults. Too much emphasis is put on age in this country. I have studies physiological psychology, I realize the implication of not being completely cerebrally developed by age 18, however, most people do not realize that development continues until they are in their mid-twenties (not just 18 or 21)! Even then, there are cognitive developmental categories that continue throughout adulthood as pruning of neurons and experience continue to make your mental gadgetry more fine-tuned. Not to mention the fact that nutrition, exercise, and your surroundings also have a great impact on delaying or speeding up development.
If we want to make laws that are based on physiology, we cannot ignore the fact that women’s genitals are part of their physiology as well. Their body has developmental stages just as their mind does, and we need laws that understand that a girl can have a baby at 14. So what if she isn't an "adult", your an adult when your 18, yet you can't drink till your 21. So why if the government can delay some rights, can they not rush others?
People keep saying, "Well when/if I had a kid I'd want to know if they were going to have an abortion!” Of course you would, and that is the very reason you shouldn't be informed! Yeah, so there are a few cool parents who would be understanding and supportive and this may open some communication doors, but how many of us remember our parents as being cool like that? Mine certainly weren’t! Voting "NO" on this proposition means you are protecting children from their parents and themselves. I've know a few girls who had backdoor abortions; some took pills and almost died trying to kill their kids, another threw herself down the stairs, and one in middle school actually had a wire hanger abortion and was hospitalized for a month from tearing and internal bleeding! Guess what, all of them came from very conservative homes, with Christian middle class parents (the very ones who are supporting this prop.), and one's father was a minister! All because their parents thought abortions was wrong, and wanted the girls to have the babies and either deal with the burden or give them up to adoption.
If we want to acknowledge that these minors haven't had their decision making equipment fully developed yet, then why would we put them in a position which could force them to suffer for the rest of their lives as single mothers who would be, statistically, living under the poverty line and raising kid or putting him in foster care, which would then make their children more prone to criminal and violent behavior?
The truth is most of these adults are too blindsided by their beliefs and morals to be able to remember their own childhood, and exactly how unreasonable parents are. Minors or not, we are human being capable of rational thought and decision making processes, and kids have to deal with that responsibility for most of their lives, the grades they get as a freshman in high school will influence the college they go to, and their career choices. If minors aren't capable of that kind of responsible though, then colleges and universities should only check your grades from your senior year.
Most minors understand their parents and their views and reactions, and are aware of the costs and consequences of making a decision like that. If they aren’t, then it is up to the abortion clinics and Planned Parenthood to give them accurate and unbiased information regarding the procedure and alternatives so they can make that decision on their own.
We aren’t talking about six year olds. These are human beings in their early and mid teens, let’s give them a little more credit. Their parents obviously are more worried about their beliefs and being controlling than of having rational and empirical discussions, if they weren't, this Prop. wouldn't even be on the ballot.

"Comparitive Literature 561"
a Haiku and a Limerick, by Michael Sherrillo

Her monotone voice
Washing away interest
Time running backwards

I'm sorry I am always late,
and I want to do well in your class,
but I have more important things I could be doing
than listen to you talk out your ass.

“Your Conditions of Love” or “Marijuana”
by Michael Sherrillo

If I had a million dollars,
would I not give you all the world?
Would I dangle carrots before you
and ask you to change all your views?
If you told me you were a believer
I may say, “I think you are wrong”
but I still wouldn’t want you to struggle
I wouldn’t tell you, “You’re on your own”
If we lived in another country
or in times much different from now
where Christianity was no longer legal
and prayer wasn’t allowed,
I’d tell you “It’s okay
to pray and to worship
whenever you visit my house”
Because I love you so much
I couldn’t, wouldn’t even know how
to make my money, my love, my support
contingent on beliefs I chose for myself.
I’d only want you to be happy
to discover life’s truths for yourself
and to pursue and enjoy them with all of your heart
and know I would always support you.

“Coming To Know Jesus”
by Michael Sherrillo

A boy named Johnny walked down the road
on his way home from Sunday school.
When he met a man in a long white robe
whose hair seemed to shine like gold.
The man said, “Have you seen me boy?”
eyes wild with nervous glee.
So Johnny looked at his stubbled beard
and the sandals on his feet,
“Well, mister, I ‘reckon I have.
We just talked ‘bout you in class”.
Then the man looked ready to run away
so Johnny quickly added,
“Your pictures on this book right here,
I read from every night.
And every day my parents pray
to you, Jesus Christ.”
The man glanced down the street both ways,
while he fingered his paper wristband.
Then he reached out a sweaty palm
and Johnny happily grabbed it.
Down the street he led the boy
to a beat up Chevy Buick,
and as he open the boys door for him
he said, “You ready to meet the lord?”

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

a poem by Michael Sherrillo

a mantra my every breath
a prayer to the holiness of your
lips pressed together waiting
against me against my
tongue touching tasting
deep into your dark
crevice your heat
uttering warm words whispering
forgotten languages lost
forever into the night
over and over the echo of your
moan your sweat your
cries lingering in my mind
twisted sheets twisted
dreams intertwined interlocked
your lips still
flushed swollen against
around me while
you my goddess my shrine my
temple remain sacred
your name still waiting
unspoken upon my

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

by Michael Sherrillo

Writing becomes an addiction. When you spend all your time reading books and writing, it becomes an escape, a freedom. You just start writing one day and you feel the freedom of it, it’s something you can’t find in conversation, because there are so many things you can’t say when you talk to other people. I can’t say what do you mean you don’t have enough money for rent, I gave you 550$, you only had to save 225$ out of the 400$ you’ve made these last 2 weeks! You wanted responsibility and now the choices you made effect not just you, but me, and pat, and all our lives, because you couldn’t wait till after you had made sure you had enough money for rent to by a plane ticket, or a sack, or go out. That I hope you figure something out because otherwise you have just screwed everyone. And I don’t know why you think that would be different if you moved out, because whoever you lived with would be screwed and responsible for your actions just like me and Pat are right now. The only difference is that you would owe much more and have much less. And they wouldn’t be nearly as forgiving. Not that we really can be if we end up being evicted. I mean, I could say that, but…

But I can’t. There is no freedom there. Not like here, where I can rant and rave and scream and do whatever I want, where I can escape my parents and my prison and my life. It’s better than reading, it’s more existentially real. In reading, I just hide from myself and the world, but in writing I’m channeled, I’m proactive. Even when I just sitting down pounding out pages of crap, like my last posting. It just came to me and I wrote it, and its crap. But it’s something, it’s real because in some way it’s me, me acting and doing and being. Even if the words and sentences strung together mean nothing, it’s the act of doing that gives the emotionally and mentally orgasmic release of everything I’ve been holding inside. I hit keys like a punching bag. And that lifts me and my mind away from the ground and the gravity of depression which I feel like is pulling and choking me so often. No one to silence me with words or feelings, because no one is here to feel this but myself. It is my guilty pleasure.

At some point I started to think like I write, my inner monologue becomes words flashing across my mind and joining together into paragraphs of thought. In that sense I do nothing but write. I feel myself wishing there were some device which could save the text of my thoughts, which seems so much better… better worded, better written, than when I finally get to sit in front of the keyboard and have to try to reconstruct all the text that has been running through me. That’s why this is crap too. If there was some way I could recapture that moment which existed no less than 10 minutes ago, when all these things first came, and as I ran to the computer lab to try to capture the final ephemeral fragments as they drifted away… if only.

It was in the fourth grade, around the ripe old age of ten years old, that I first began my true studies. We were sitting in the Jacuzzi in my back yard, the lid was on so it was only us, cooking in the hot water and it swirled with jets and currents around our bodies. With only a foot between the water and the lid, it felt like we were breathing the same air. The fumes of chlorine filled our lungs as the steam transformed the space between us into a hazy dream, a world all our own. It was with that first kiss with the neighbor girl that I began, what Cynthia Shearer once described as, “the serious lifelong study of the lady female member of the species homo sapiens human beings”.

That’s been stuck in my head for the past two hours. I had to get it out. And now I don’t know what to say. I guess that makes this a good a place to end as any. It doesn’t matter than none of it makes sense to anyone, because there is no one to hear this, it doesn't exist (if a tree falls in the forest...). And so, I am purged. I am clean again, my soul renewed.
I am free.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Strange Bedfellows
by Michael Sherrillo

The easiest way to turn friends into enemies is to ask them abut their politics. Only the rare individual can listen to your views and calmly explain why they disagree and what their own are. I often imagine myself to be one of those few, but in the reality of the moment, sometimes objectivity can get thrown out the window as the argumentative heat rises.

Take last night. There is a kindly old gent who I have taken to chatting with these past few nights, who is an avid reader and seems to genuinely enjoy going out of his way to do nice things for the people around him. He is white, 62, and a very successful realty/mortgage business owner. If your Republican-dar isn't pinging, then get it checked. I should have assumed he was republican. I usually consider myself a savvy enough individual to be able to guess a persons left/right leaning just by spending a few minutes chatting with them. Maybe it was his niceness which made me relax and forget myself for a moment, but as we joked about the job our wonderful "Gubernator" is doing, I let slip some comment about our new chief justice, something along the lines of the supreme court sending American society back to the 1950's "golden age" of repressed patriarchal domination which was only "Golden" in the minds of WASPey old republicans and southern hicks who had never left the inbred small towns they were born into and haven't had a science class beyond the 6th grade. Okay, maybe I could have been a little more sensitive about it, but like I said, my guard was down.

The building tension filling the pause in the air was palatable, I saw his lips move and before his words could reach my ears my republican-dar was pinging like crazy to the tune of "shit shit shit shit shit shit". I was floored. For five minutes I was laid flat by the ranting monologue about how our democratic senator had refused to support Roberts nomination, despite the fact that she though he was brilliant and that she couldn't think of a better man, because she wanted a woman on the court. Or, as my friend was so eloquently putting it, she wouldn't nominate him because he didn't have a cunt.

While I disagree with her reasons for refusing to vote for him, as the flood of words began to slow, I took the opportunity to try to mention a few that his records were being kept hidden for a reason, and the there are several documents which illustrate that he is completely against women in the workplace and all the civil liberties not endorsed by the Bush party. That gave him his second wind. After a few more minutes, I realized that I wasn't going to have the opportunity to get a word in edgewise until her remembered to breathe or completely passed out, so making up an important something I suddenly remembered I had to do, I politely excused myself.

While I walked away, I was imagining myself at the senate interviewing Roberts. The things I would like to say to him. That "liberal judges" are what have saved American society from racism, from sexism, from prohibition. That precedent weights an institution in it's past, but not all pasts are good, that this country was build on a wonderful ideology which ended up expressing itself with slavery, with denying women the right to vote, with trying to prevent workers from unionizing, with policies which hurt immigrants (and everyone but the American Indians are immigrants from one generation or another), which tried to extend the "life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness" to only rich white conservative Christian males. That is the precedent of American judges. We need more than someone who is mired by the past obligations of tradition to help guide America into a new future. One where people have the freedom to choose the lives that they wish to have, to choose their own happiness, instead of those prescribed by some dogmatic documents of Do's and Don'ts erected in front of a southern courthouse. We need activist judges to see that distant goal and dream, that equality which exists in all people and the ability for each of us as individuals to choose a life and happiness which is decided by us alone. Let gay men marry, let pot smokers toke, let women earn comparable wages! The goals of America should be to right the wrongs of our past and break from tradition to create a better future for us all.

That's what I would say to Mr. Roberts. Your precious precedent can kiss my red-blooded, patriotic, individual, free ass. Let liberty ring.

My Catharsis

Heard this song, and lame as I usually think it is, on the freeway alone, cigarette dangling out the open window at night while I drove away, it was awesome to just rock out and vent a little with.

Drunk and I'm feeling down
And I just wanna be alone
I'm pissed cause you came around
Why don't you just go home
Cause you channel all your pain
And I can't help to fix myself
Your making me insane
All I can say is

I tried to help you once
A kiss will only vise
I saw you going down
But you never realized
That your drowning in the water
So I offered you my hand
Compassions in my nature
Tonight is our last dance

I'm drunk and I'm feeling down
And I just wanna be alone
You shouldn't ever came around
Why don't you just go home?
Cause your drowning in the water
And I tried to grab your hand
And I left my heart open
But you didn't understand
But you didn't understand
You fix yourself

I can't help you fix yourself
But at least I can say I tried
I'm sorry but I gotta move on with my own life
I can't help you fix yourself
But at least I can say I tried
I'm sorry but I gotta move on with my own life

“Moving Out, Moving On”
by Michael Sherrillo

I don’t associate my relationships with a loss of identity. I feel like I have some comfort in who I am, I feel confident in myself and my “identity”. Maybe it’s because I grew up as an only child, and never had tons of friends. Maybe it’s because I’ve always been very independent and been able to do my own thing on my own terms. I lived on my own for two years, and while not being financially independent, I worked and was busy and had a large amount of freedom and time for self discovery. What I have always loathed is not being able to share that life with others, individualism and independence are great, but I was always haunted by a terrible shadow of isolation. Since the GF is planning on moving out in the next few months though (in pursuit of her lost identity and responsibility) I am having a great sense of freedom. The loneliness and isolation had all but disappeared. However, in sharing my life so intimately, I did have to make a lot of compromises in my own personal desires. Not that I feel any bitterness about it, because being able to make someone you love happy often gives a greater sense of joy and personal satisfaction than simply making yourself happy. But since the news, I have been feeling the faint stirrings of whimsy for the things which I do sometimes miss. When I’m alone, I’m don’t have to wait for anybody to want to do what I want, and I don’t have the excuse of codependency, so I’m forced to hold only myself responsible.

Maybe it’s due to my views of relationships, where you enter into an emotional contract as partners to share your lives, and while you expect to make some compromises, you also expect them to make some as well. Example, if you want to exercise, you don’t expect them to go with you every time, this might threaten your feelings of being an individual, but you would like them to want to share something together that makes you happy and thereby grow as a couple, i.e. she goes jogging with you a few times a week, you go to some concerts you don’t want to for her, and so you both grow, as a person experiencing new things, and as a relationship by sharing things with someone else.

But that is a balance I haven’t felt for some time. Actually, I don’t really know if I ever have, aside from deciding which TV stations to watch (I get a little discovery channel, she gets a little Springer and cheaters, and we both are happy and a little more worldly for it). So I’m looking forward to my “new life”, I have enough financial security with my various jobs and have learned enough budgeting responsibility to know exactly the life I want and enjoy. Surfing a few times a week, going to the movies and theatre hopping for a whole day, singing karaoke at the local bar, going hiking, and sitting around debating and drinking with my friends…

I’ve learned what it takes to make me happy. And I look forward to being able to think about just me for a change. Especially since I feel like I’ve compromised and worked and worried and strived for that balance and cooperation in this relationship, and since she isn’t happy, it feels sort of wasted, since that was the whole goal, for us to share ourselves, our lives, to compromise, and through that, grow as individuals, and grow together. But I guess that’s something I’ve known about this for a long time.

Happiness and freedom has its price: responsibility. I hope she figures herself out and learns from all this without us growing to far apart or something happening with her where she in financially screwed and on her own; responsibility is scary and can be devastating. And then maybe someday, a little older and wiser and more sure of herself, we can share our lives again, and start growing together instead of growing apart.