Wednesday, May 28, 2008

There Ought To Be A Law...

Last weekend, in celebration of my turning the big four-oh, my dear and generous friend took me away for the weekend to this great hotel/spa... We had an absolute blast and I have never had anyone do anything like that for me. We had a super time. I told her before that you learn a lot from people (both good and bad) when you travel with them. In this case, I still like her just as much as I always have, but I digress...

We drove through the rain on Thursday night to get there with the promise of a sunny weekend. Saturday did not disappoint. We woke up early and there was not a cloud in the sky. It was the perfect day for sunning by the pool. We had our pick of lounge chairs in the morning, but the pool deck quickly filled up and gave me the opportunity to do what I love: People-watch... I watched a lovely family play with their children. I watched a Shirley Temple clone run between the fountains that lined the edge of the pool. I listened and watched as a wedding party arrived from out of town...

After lunch, we were back in our chairs when I noticed a group of three men setting up camp across the pool deck... One of the three was as tall, dark and handsome as they come. "Oooh, this will be good," I thought. He removed his shirt: "Wow!" He took off his shorts... "What the...!?"

EVER. EVER. EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ugh!!! Not only was it a Speedo, but it was WHITE. Double ugh!!! Not only that, but his friend had on one that matched... Meantime, I'm furiously elbowing my friend (who was on the phone at the time) and doing the "look, look!" head nod in his direction... She finally looked and said, "Well that's not right..." Damn straight, sister!

There ought to be a law...

Sunday, May 18, 2008


Recently, the mother who was the deviant mastermind behind the cyberbullying case of Megan Meier was indicted (thankfully), so I thought I'd post this again. Megan's story had a huge effect on me. What do you think about all of this?

It's a hard thing to admit, even today: I was one of those kids that had a hard time making friends, and I truly hated being a kid. I was always the outsider, even when I ran with the "popular" crowd. It's taken me most of my adult life to get to the point where I'm confident about me and the way I look, and really don't put as much stock into what other people's opinions are the way I used to. I know who I am. I treat people the way I wish to be treated. Dare I say, I am a good person. I try to teach my son to do the same by setting the example. He is a great kid and I think I have something to do with that, and that makes me very proud. I think more than any other compliment, hearing that you are a good mom is the most wonderful compliment there is.

So having a hard time as a kid wasn't because I came from a broken home. It wasn't because I was poor. It wasn't because I suffered from any kind of illness. My fault, at least in the eyes of my peers, was that I was fat. Even now, it's hard for me to sit here, type this, and look at these words. Hard because even now at the age of 40, I still deal with the comments, and they still bother me to a degree, especially when they come from other "adults": You know, you are so pretty but you'd probably feel better about yourself if you lost twenty pounds... You know, you should probably take your hands off of your hips because that draws attention to them... You know, you really have a pretty face: chubby, though... You're just a big girl... (That last one, for some reason, is the one I hate the most!)

Though difficult, I'm doing this because of a story that has recently come to light. It breaks my heart, and it really pisses me off: Megan Meier. This young woman--child, really--was the subject of the type of ridicule that I was never faced with growing up, and that was bullying via the Internet. She was called fat. She was called a slut. She was told the world would be a better place without her. The bullying became so intense for Megan that she felt she had no other choice than to take her own life. She was 13.

As if all of this weren't tragic enough, it turns out that the bully in this case was an adult. Not the online predators we hear so much about, but rather the mother of her former friend. Apparently this campaign began as an attempt by said mother to find out what Megan might say about her former friend behind her back. Under the guise of a young man trying to woo Megan, this person lulled Megan into believing she had a cyber-boyfriend, got her comfortable, happy even, then with whatever deep-down evil this person had inside, harnessed it and began the demise of Megan.I am smart enough to know that the value our society places on the "beautiful" people will probably never change. With that said, though, I also know the value of character, of kindness, of spirit. Our children need to know that they are worth more than their looks.

Tragically, Megan was made to believe that she was not worthy of us. I wonder if it's really the other way around.