The Actual Engagement Post

I’ve been beating around the bush about Ben and my decision to get married.

Some people have asked about “the proposal.” There wasn’t one. That’s not really how we do things.

Periodically, marriage comes up. Usually we decide we have no interest in it. In the last couple of years, mostly since moving to Portland, we found we were slightly less opposed to it than usual. Then in our latest conversation we decided it was time.

2016 may be the year we buy a house. A few years after that we’d like to start the adoption process. The plans we have don’t require marriage, but it does make things go more smoothly. I’m not so opposed to the institution that I would willingly make my own life and Ben’s life harder over something so trivial. Also, gay marriage is legal now, so I won’t feel like a complete tool getting married when some of my closest friends wouldn’t be able to, or wouldn’t have federal recognition if they did.

It’s simple math. It fits with our plans and it makes sense. Our accountant more or less agreed. We won’t be making that fat tax break money (damn me finally earning more), but its a smart move for our future plans.

And that was basically the last rational thought I had.

I am so freaked out right now. Not about being married. I’m already married. I’ve been married. This man and I have been planning our lives together, and supporting each other and standing by one another for nearly 12 years. I don’t need the state to tell me what I already live every day.

I am freaked out about the pig-blood waterfall of cultural and personal baggage that has just been dumped on my unsuspecting head. I haven’t felt this judged and scrutinized since I was deciding which college to go to. In fact, I feel more judged and scrutinized now because–wonderfully–I have so many more friends than I did then.

My ideal wedding has always been a court-house affair. I’m an independent, pragmatic person. The idea that someone would want to come to my wedding makes absolutely no sense to me. Which is really ironic since I love going to all your weddings. I’m not being facetious. Even if I might seem withdrawn or tend to hide in the corner with one person or small group at a time, I love a wedding. It’s like a party, but there’s an agenda.

Lots of people are saying I should “do me.” I wish it were that easy. Both in the single and double entendre. I like to be alone. I like to do things for myself. I don’t ask for help and I rarely seem to need any. I prefer to help people move rather than attend their housewarming parties (although I appreciate invites to both, I just find the moving less awkward because there’s something to do). I almost always duck out of parties early because I have to work, and I work so much because I have this sucking hole of worthlessness in my chest that I have to fill with something or it might cause a spacetime singularity which would murder us all and collapse our entire dimension.

Or at least our planet. Despite it’s place at the core of my identity, I really don’t understand how this thing works.

I like to think I act pretty normal. Maybe even to the extent that people tend to forget I am a garbage person.

I am not supposed to live in this house, to own a business, to have these amazing friends, or this wonderful family, both chosen and genetic. I am supposed to be dead. I was supposed to turn out like my mom. It was definitely never intended for me to be this happy or this safe ever in my life.

I’m too smart to think it was anything other than sheer luck and stubbornness that put me here while literally millions of other garbage people are thrown away in the foster system, in prison, and on the streets.

Usually this gives me an edge. Especially in nicely structured environments like work. I already don’t belong here, so I’m going to come to the table with everything I have and I’m going to get what I want or die trying.

But that’s work. There’s a clear avenue towards proving yourself. Even when I’m working for myself where the lines of success and failure are murky, I can get something to hold on to and prove that I qualify for this.

In social situations I find it harder to justify my admission. My last four birthdays were so successful that I usually don’t even think about the three terrible, anxiety ridden birthdays before them where I was trying to figure out how to give myself a birthday party that didn’t make me want to die. This is like that.

I’m always going to be a garbage person. In the sense that, like garbage, we generate too much in this world. So much, in fact, that we throw most of it away instead of using what we have and being grateful for it. It’s just more convenient to let the excess we generated in the first place become waste. That’s what we’re doing with the 7.2 million Americans in prison right now. That’s what we’re doing with all the kids in foster care, and the kids who would be in the head-start programs we’re not funding in favor of tax cuts for the super rich. We’re throwing them away because we’d just rather not have to deal with how gross they are. How gross we made them.

I am always going to be a person someone made and tossed away when it got too hard for them. I don’t think I’m ever going to feel like I actually belong in this world, and from what I can tell, almost no one ever does. We all have some reason burning inside of us that makes us feel separate and alone. We have all been wounded and we spend so much time just trying to crawl off and die that we forget to see that everyone else is either doing the same thing, or fighting that impulse in some way.

So, for this reason I won’t be having the courthouse wedding of my dreams. I won’t stay on the edges of my life. At least in this instance. I’m going to call attention to myself, and I’m going to have a ceremony. Because it doesn’t matter what I was supposed to do, or what I am supposed to do now. It doesn’t matter what other people expect, or what they think. What does matter is that I live my life, not according to the fear that I don’t belong, but by the spirit with which I fight that assertion.

What does a feminist wedding look like?

No really. I’m asking.

So far I have:

  • No weird “taking cow to market” isle walking
  • No pronouncing “man and wife”
  • The less money given to the wedding industry the better
  • Pot Luck
  • Home made cake
  • Cheap dress
  • Bonus points if it’s a dress I already own
  • This is not “my day”
  • Because every day is my day
  • Because I run my own life
  • Because I’m a real person
  • With mostly equal rights

In lieu of gifts, guests can donate to Planned Parenthood.

I’m still going around in my head about the ring. Do I want a ring? The answer to that question is always yes. I like rings. Do I want to pay for a ring, or even know what I’d want such a ring to look like? The answer is no.

I have one ring that we call the vagina ring because it looks a little like an abstract vagina. It may be the most feminist option.

I don’t know about wearing it everywhere though. The little clitoris part looks kind of precarious.

Also, the whole ring as a marker of ownership bit is a pretty huge boner killer for me.


UPDATE: Ben still wants gifts. Back to the drawing board I guess.

Four Conversations About Marriage


Dad: So, Ben’s finally going to make an honest woman out of you?

Me: Yeah right. If anything, I’m making an honest woman out of him.


Grandma: So why now after all these years?

Me: When we were in Los Angeles, everything felt dead.

Ben: Like there was no point.

Me: We didn’t like our apartment or our neighborhood, but we worked really hard to make the money to live in it.

Ben: Even though we were never there.

Me: We never seemed to do any better than the year before. We couldn’t plan for anything living paycheck to paycheck. But in Portland, we have family and community. We feel connected to life.

Ben: We’re talking about buying a house.

Me: We can finally see a future we could actually live in.

Grandma: Makes sense.


Ben: Alright, goodbye.

Ben’s Dad: It was nice to see you guys.

Ben: Oh, before we go. We’re planning on getting married and we were wondering if we could do it at your house.

Me: Not now. In May.

Ben’s Mom: Really? Oh my God. Really? This is great!

Ben’s Dad: You were just going to drop that and leave?

Ben: Well, yeah. That seems about right.


Me: Why am I nervous right now?

Ben: Because it’s real.

Me: Seriously, changing my Facebook status has been the most dramatic part of this whole thing.

Ben: Welcome to the future. Where Facebook is a culturally significant part of life.

Me: Oh gross.

Pepper and Grandma

I wish I had been recording when Pepper saw grandma for the first time in two years. At first I was kind of worried because it looked like she was scared. She stopped dead in her tracks and got the front of her body really low to the ground. Then she was really still and quiet for a second, but then she absolutely lost it and started running in circles, jumping up and down, whimpering and crying and wiggling and climbing grandma’s legs. When we picked her up, she practically vibrated out of my arms to get to her. She was shivering with emotion. It was really touching and a little bit sad.

I did get some video later on when she’d calmed down a lot.

She’s such a great dog. She’s so smart that sometimes she’s sure her idea is better than mine, but she’s still so sweet and all she wants to do is be with her people and make them happy.

I was also a little proud of myself when grandma asked if she was bigger. She is. She has significantly more muscle mass than she did two years ago. Portland walks have been kind to us all.

wpid-20150824_192527.jpg
This is what happened when I shouted “look at me!”

I’ve missed grandma too. I’m spending the whole day with her on Tuesday, then on Wednesday we leave to come back to Portland with one small detour to the coast.

We spent most of the day driving down and got some pretty great views of the Pacific. The nice cool coast air has been a reprieve from the self-cleaning oven we’ve been suffering through in Portland lately.

wpid-20150824_180714.jpg

After nearly 12 hours on the road, dinner with the fam, some drama over the hotel room, and work, that’s all I have the energy to write today.

Some of you may have come here looking for a post about our engagement announcement, which went up on Facebook and Twitter today (we wanted to tell all the parents before we put it online). Tomorrow or the next day will be the day I tackle my (probably not so shocking) about-face on the issue of this outdated, sexist tool of the patriarchy. So stay tuned.

Visiting Grandma

By the time you’re reading this, we’re probably on our way to Northern California to see grandma. I haven’t seen her since October 2013, when she moved to Wisconsin. Bad hearing paired with a lifelong dislike of the phone has made for some pretty stilted telephone conversations over the last 2 years, so I’m nervous and excited to see her.

It’s kind of a whirlwind tour. We arrive on Monday, hang out in Tuesday and then leave first thing in the morning on Wednesday.

It’s 1:25 AM right now, and we’ll be getting up at 6 in order to leave by 7:30. I’m drop dead exhausted, but I’m not sure if I’ll sleep much.

You guys know how family can be for me, even when it’s the family I like. Updates sure to come, if not here then on Facebook.

Facebook Friends: The Duggars Fucking Suck

20150818fbfirst

20150818adam

And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.
– Matthew 19:24

Are the Duggars money grubbing? According to CelebrityNetWorth.com, the family as a whole is worth $3.5 million. But it looks like the site’s records end in 2014, well before Josh Duggar’s incestuous pedophilia scandal, and the big Ashley Madison reveal.

So at least one Dugger is into kids, fucking his siblings, and cheating on his wife. That’s all on paper. Depending on how you read the bible, the incest could be okay from a Christian point of view. So could the pedophilia. Straight up cheating on your wife without officially making the mistress a second wife is probably uncool. Of all the things the bible is pretty vague about, adultery is really clearly not okay.

Although there could be an argument made that biblical adultery has everything to do with husbands and fathers and nothing to do with wives or mothers, so if you cheated on your wife with an unmarried woman who’s dad is dead, there’s really no victim at that point. But I’m not a Bible scholar.

Certainty I’m not good enough at the Bible to figure out why it’s perfectly fine to shave your beard, wear polyblends, eat shrimp, fuck your baby sisters, and cheat on your wife, but gay marriage is still off the table.

But back to the initial question. Are the Duggars money grubbing? You could say the fact that they decided to sell out their family and their commitment to a simple Christian life in exchange for a TV show is money grubbing, but I’d be more into calling it fame-whoring. Vanity, even.

Can a family that puts themselves on TV and in the media at every possible opportunity be humble, even if they are being pretty great Christians, what with the pedophilia and all? Personally, I don’t think so.

I especially don’t think it’s very humble to purport to know the mind of God, which is what any person does when they use their religious piety as an excuse to perpetuate hatred and discriminate against others.

It’s also pretty obviously not humble to take the law into your own hands. For example, to discover that a crime has been committed, decide not to report it, and then use personal connections and political influence to finagle local law enforcement into looking the other way on multiple counts of molestation that you just forgot to mention… for nine fucking months. Which, by the way, is how the kid-touching was handled, if you didn’t know.

So no, I don’t think the Duggars are money grubbing whores. Neither do I think they’re humble Christians. But they are definitely corrupt, dysfunctional liars who are either into kid fucking, or into protecting kid fuckers. Which I find to be really distasteful. No matter what the Bible says.

Facebook Friends: Craftiness

20150818fbfirst

20150818anne

It’s always funny to me the things people do for themselves without having any concept of their value. Crafting is like that for me. Until today it hadn’t occurred to me that my crafting posts would resonate with somebody. It’s almost like I’ve been saying ‘this is the thing I did instead of writing a blog.’

I’m so glad you wrote this. Now I can add some instructions that won’t be total bullshit. Even though I put instructions on the bag weaving, some craft posts like the sperm amigurumi have no instructions. That project was so random, it would probably be one sentence: Crochet a sperm shape.

I tend to craft with wild abandon. Patterns piss me off. But now that I know someone likes the craft posts, there will be more and they will be less terrible. I don’t think anybody’s ever going to get anything like stitch counts out of me, but there will be more details than there currently are.

I haven’t crafted anything new since yesterday, but I did come across this box:

wpid-20150818_231015.jpg

wpid-20150818_231050.jpg

It’s just the standard box a store will give you when you buy a cheapish necklace or a pair of earrings. I used painters tape to reinforce the corners on the lid, then I painted a simple pattern, and sealed with about 3 layers of Mod Podge.

I kept my Bluetooth earpiece in it inside my messy purse for about two years with minimal wear and tear. If I’d used the same corner reinforcement techniques on all the edges and corners, especially the base of the box, it would be in near-perfect condition. As it stands, I don’t keep anything in it right now, but that could always change.