Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Some bits of the real me

Dear Husband recently got after me for hiding my true self. This followed him asking an Old Friend for some advice on encouraging me to write again. Old Friend seems to have advised him to not go there, as I was a suicidal mess when I wrote. Well, whatever. Maybe I’ve shut the door on my subconscious. I don’t have a solution to that. But I do hide my true self. How could I keep a job otherwise? How would I fit in most places if I didn't just sort of let my opinions slide?

So, in the interest of being authentic for a few minutes, here are some things that I tend to keep quiet about:

  1. I’m an unabashed liberal. I keep that quiet at work, because they despise liberals as unchristian freaks of nature.
  2. I don’t think homosexuality is a sin, and I’m baffled by people who do. I think gays should be allowed to marry and that their marriages should be recognized by the state as unions with the same status as marriage. If Jesus Christ himself came down to earth and told me differently, I’d tell Him He was wrong and should rethink the matter in light of the overall message of the scriptures.
  3. I don’t believe in the headship of the husband as a biblical imperative.
  4. I quite frequently have doubts about the existence of God and think we are all deluded.
  5. I can’t stand Beth Moore. I can’t stand all those women Bible teachers who have seminars where they joke about women doing too much or whatever crap they joke about and then do a teaching on the scripture that is about as original as a cross-stitch sampler.
  6. I hate contemporary worship music. I temper that by saying that I’ve definitely had some grow on me, but for the most part I think Christian worship music and Christian contemporary pop music are bland beyond belief and some of the most mind numbing junk I have ever listened too. Give me the Rolling Stones any day.
  7. I don’t say grace at meals. I say it at work because if you don’t pause, bow your head and look serious for a few moments they get suspicious.
  8. Every time someone says something about the sovereignty of God I cringe inside.
  9. Every time someone says something about God having a better plan when some tragedy strikes, I want to slap them.
  10. Advise me how to raise my kids and I can guarantee I will not listen to a word you say, just on principle.
  11. Complain about how other people raise their kids and I will secretly hope yours join rock bands, color their hair purple and pierce their tongues.
  12. I think sexual purity is over-rated. The church would still rather freak out over premarital sex than do something about serious suffering. And don’t start talking about unwanted pregnancies and diseases. If we had the right social infrastructures in place (see, that’s the unabashed liberal speaking) with appropriate access to contraceptives, universal healthcare and affordable childcare we wouldn’t have such a mess. When people get all freaked out about the sanctity of marriage and the glorious holiness of husband and wife and so on, I want to tell them to chill, take a few deep breaths, and remember that Christ’s mission was not to establish a kingdom of no sex without marriage.
  13. I cannot comfortably use most stock Christian phrases.
  14. Thomas Kinkade sucks.
  15. I loathe the phrase “bible-believing church.” And the other kind are . . .? Country clubs? Social networks? Mosques in disguise? Communist outposts? Pits of iniquity? Or, just maybe, Christ-believing churches?
  16. You couldn’t pay me to put my kids in a Christian school.
  17. I’m not particularly interested in raising “obedient” children. Obedience is a code word for “shut up and accept the status quo because you don’t have the power to do anything about it anyway.”
  18. Question authority. Always. If I can teach my children one thing it will be that power corrupts and they should always be aware that anyone in a position of authority can be corrupted.
  19. I don’t really get the problem with secular humanism. Strikes me as way better than, say, fascism.
  20. Let’s see, what disaster will happen if they remove In God We Trust from our currency? Oh, no, God won’t love us anymore. Help—we’ll be just like Europe! Doomed, I say, doomed! On the other hand, I think any self-respecting atheist could make better use of their time.
  21. When did the Bible become an instruction manual? We are such a fraggin utilitarian culture. I mean, how boring is an instruction manual? Do you really want to read one?
  22. When did poetry readings become “spoken word performances”? What—now you’re supposed to have a backup band? Whatever you call them, they are booooring. I have been to maybe one poetry reading that wasn’t a total drag. Poets have this voice they put on for readings. I wish I could describe it. But wait, I don’t have to, because I found this description: “The most common of these is the tendency to lapse into a sort of quivering, nasal incantation, in which the voice trails upward, uncertainly, at the end of a line. This mannerism lends an oracular cast to much modern poetry, as if the poets were delivering dire prognostications or trying to awaken in the masses some sense of religious awe.” Oh God, it’s ghastly. The description is from this article in the New York Times, which I happened upon through the wonderful portal of Google, and which expresses to a T my own thoughts about the utter absurdity of poetry readings.
  23. Writing workshops were invented by the devil. I sat in a workshop where someone waxed poetic –ha!-about the writer’s use of prepositions. Prepositions, people. Poets aren’t normal, and when you put them all in a room and ask them to critique each other, there will be blood and a whole lot of nonsense.
  24. I never want to hear the words “covenant children” again. Beware all you non-covenant children—the big bad wolf of secular humanism wants to eat you for lunch!

So that’s some of the real me. I’m feeling more authentic already.


  1. Yeah for authenticity!

    I will say -- I have a good deal of agreement with much of what you say. Maybe 90 percent. I do say grace at meals, for instance.

    And I believe that 99 percent of poetry should have been written ... and then burned. NEVER read aloud. EVER. Ever. Ever ever ever.

  2. lol... Hello. you!

    I hope I get the chance to buy you a drink someday :) And I won't bust out any poetry... promise!

  3. Great post! Sorry your work is such a poor environment.


  4. Rev Mommy: So right about the poetry, although I don't mind the casual dissemination of it. It's the pomposity of readings, workshops and slams that is so frustrating. No wonder everyone avoids poetry or thinks it's difficult to understand.

    Wilsonian: Howdy. I could use that drink whenever your out Atlanta way.

    Shel: Oddly enough my work environment is very good. I have profound differences of opinion with the denomination that I don't feel free to express, but everyone is kind and thoughtful and very service oriented. They have been wonderful and loving at my lowest times and very flexible regarding time off and scheduling. So I don't mean to bash them at all. The walk the Christian walk, there's no doubt about it. It's just, well, an odd place to find myself.

  5. I hope for you an ever-growing space in your life in which you can be the smart, funny, spunky, marvelous, and real you.

  6. At the risk of seeming judgemental, in this post you seem very self absorbed.

  7. I love the authentic you.

    and snorted at almost all of these - especially

    a) Christ’s mission was not to establish a kingdom of no sex without marriage.


    b)I will secretly hope yours [your kids] join rock bands, color their hair purple and pierce their tongues.

    YOU made my day.
    Now if only I could be quite as authentic and original and funny -and as katherine put it spunky - as you

    I feel so sorry for your workmates. They get a glossy cardboard cut out - whereas we - we get the REAL you.

  8. Lorna: You so often make mine.

    Anonymous: At the risk of seeming judgmental, you are. BAA HAA HAA. Read someone else.

  9. Now I know part of the reason why I enjoy reading you so much...
    What's the uncheesey liberal equivalent of Amen, sister?! ;-)
    Great post

  10. Thanks for your comment on my blog and I love your list.

    I share your frustration with 'bible-believing', the 'kingdom of no sex before marriage' and I NEVER thought I'd meet someone else who disliked poetry.

  11. This is brilliant- it could almost be my list. I love it!

  12. oh, and my son has had purple hair, has a wonderful tatoo, and a tongue piercing!!!

    ...and he loves rock music!!!!...and plays bass guitar...