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So many people are doing so many good things and, for the most part,  I’m not.  That’s not to say I’m doing anything wrong, either, but my existence is pretty neutral.  I’m not doing much to make the world a better place, and as a middle(ish)-class white person, I really should be.  I feel great about doing my part to get a dangerous man slapped with the label “criminal” by the penal system*, but that only affects the handful of women who may encounter him before his unhealthy choices kill him.  I want to help effect broad-scale change, because so much change is needed.

What holds me back is my inability to be a leader.  I can’t be the one to start things, to do the planning and organizing, and especially the outreach.  I can’t join others’ organizations either, because of my social anxiety.  Walking into a room where I don’t know anyone (and staying sober) is more than I can handle.  I’ve been to a couple protests before, but all I could do was stand to the side holding a sign.  Chanting and marching in a group of strangers is far too scary.  Plus, I’m also afraid of the commitment, of people relying on me.  What if they want me to do something I’m uncomfortable with?  What if I get too depressed and just want to lay in bed?  What if I’d rather drink instead of do work?  I don’t want to put myself and others in a position where I fairly likely may let them down.

Part of me wants to give myself more credit than that, but I know my own flaws too well.  I love my comfort zone, and my comfort zone has become drinking and listening to music with Bunny.  They might ask me to write a press release or paint some signs, but I’d rather get drunk and sing songs and play on Facebook.  These habits have me in a spiral of self-loathing at times, but I’m not sure I have the willpower or the drive to break them.

A long time ago in this blog I made mention of a girl I had a one-night stand threesome with.  I knew her first name and had a vague idea of a last name.  About a month ago a name popped up on Facebook, and I was pretty sure it was her.  It was.  Since that crazy night/morning, she seems to have been very ambitious and gotten some cool things done, including an upcoming plan to start a garden.  I think, maybe, I can handle starting there.  A community garden won’t enact major policy change in our sexist, racist society, but at least it’ll benefit some people.  I’ll be doing something positive for the greater good.


* I won’t go into detail for both legal and privacy purposes, but I’ll say that it has proven to be a very good idea for me to write the below post about intimate partner violence.  It turns out I’m not the only one.



Putting up the tree is one of my favorite parts of the year.  My family always made a big deal of it, with a crackling fire and hot cocoa and Nat King Cole.  Last year I got my first apartment and my first Christmas tree, and I was so excited about carrying on the cutesy traditions in my own home.

But last December was awful for me.  I was very depressed, in an abusive relationship and trying so hard to convince myself and everyone else that we were madly in love.  Reading my blogs from last fall and winter–not early summer, because that was still genuine–I can’t believe how fake it all was.  I’m not even sure I realized it at the time, though.  I was deceiving myself, insisting I was happy even though I resented him so much for refusing to leave my apartment no matter how much I begged.

Again, come this time of year, I was very excited to give my new Christmas traditions a second try.  And then, ironically enough, he came back into my life in an unexpected way, terrorizing me again a year later.  But, this time, even though it’s been emotionally excruciating, it’s still for the best.  No regrets at all.  It has been painful, but it’s progress.

Anyway, what I wanted to share was not all that pain and disappointment, but how I was pleasantly surprised last night, when I forced myself to put up all the Christmas decorations even though I was sick to my stomach when I started.

Colin and I built the tree together (yeah, it’s a fake tree, but stop judging me for my need for convenience), but then he accidentally got too stoned and had to sit down and veg for awhile.  For some reason, I was really intimidated by the idea of putting the lights on.  It’s silly in retrospect, but I’d never put lights on a tree before, and my dad always bitched and moaned about it, so I was worried.  But, I did it!  I strung all the lights myself, while Colin DJed and gave a stoner-grin of approval.

I explained to him which ornaments were most important to me, and why I valued them so much, as I placed them on the tree.  He watched me and really listened.  Sure, it was partly the weed, but I felt a real sense of peace and happiness that I hadn’t expected to feel.  It was the best I’d felt after an emotionally grueling week.

Then, it was like a movie.  Love scenes in romance films are always so contrived and fake, and most people never have those kinds of experiences, because they’re not usually realistic.  (Again, in terms of our experience, I’m sure the weed factored in.)  But he came up to me next to the tree and gave me a peck on the lips, and that peck immediately turned into making out.  I pulled his body against mine, kissing him deeply and running my hands through his hair as I felt him get excited against me.  We groaned and kissed and fell into bed (pretty literally, since it’s a small apartment), and it was like the main sex scene in every rom com–clothes flying, stealing kisses in between unbuttoning jeans, nails dragging across each other’s backs.  We proceeded to have the kind of unbridled, screaming sex that the whole neighborhood can hear.  What we did, I’d always thought of as a movie cliche.  And maybe it is, but it happened for us, for whatever reason.

Instead of basking in the afterglow, though, he picked up the laptop right away and put on a song, Queen’s “Love Of My Life,” and he belted it out to me, even louder than the wild sex we’d just had, and I thought it was so silly and cute.  This was immediately followed by simply making funny faces at each other and laughing until our abs hurt, because we were stoned and giddy and in love.

Then we finished decorating the tree naked.

My solo trip to Greece

For my first international travel experience, I went all in, taking a solo trip to Greece.  I flew into Athens, where I spent my limited time at the Acropolis and wandering the touristy markets of Monastiraki Square.  


Selfie in front of the Parthenon





Lunch at a cafe



The streets of Athens


At my AirBNB in Athens

From Athens, I took a five-hour train ride from Larissa station up to Kalabaka.  I stayed in the small town of Kastraki (so small, they don’t even have addresses there!), for the purpose of visiting the monasteries of Meteora.



Monasteries of Meteora



Outside the hostel in Kastraki

The train back was terrible, as I had to stand the whole time in a small hallway without air conditioning.  But eventually I got back to Athens, where I spent the night in a hostel and got up early to sail out to Santorini.



Waiting for the ferry in Piraeus


6-hour ferry ride

I got a high-speed ferry from Piraeus Port to Fira.  The ride wasn’t bad, although I’m glad I had prescription-grade motion sickness patches.  It was nighttime when I got to Fira, so I splurged on a shuttle to take me to my hostel.  

In the morning I made my first venture to the caldera, and it was stunning.  It looked exactly like I’d seen in so many photos.  Most of it is private property, so I couldn’t wander around much of it, but I did wind through the streets and alleys in the city center, taking in the views and spending a lot of money on souvenirs.



At the caldera in Fira



Restaurants and souvenir shops


The next day I went to Perivolos Beach, a black sand beach with a string of bars serving up delicious cocktails.  


That evening I took a bus ride to Oia, the most picturesque town on Santorini.  There, I sat on a stone wall among countless other visitors, watching the sun glint off the  white houses as it set.  It was the most beautiful manmade sight I’ve ever seen.


Picturesque Oia


Greece was an amazing experience, but I was also glad to go home.  I never got lonely, but I felt a lot of stress trying to commute and stay on schedule in a country where many people don’t speak English.  It was well worth the effort and the money, though.  The world is huge, and there are so many spectacular things to see and do!

I wasn’t expecting to travel internationally in 2016, but my sister is talking about going to Johannesburg, South Africa, so I might try to join her.  If not, I hope to visit New Orleans next year!

I think I’m finally ready to talk about my experience with intimate partner violence

It’s kind of out of nowhere, but I think I’m ready to talk about the time I was sexually assaulted, even though it’s minor compared to what other women have experienced. Inspired by this Feministing story, I decided to just go ahead and share it. The more we talk, the better the world may become.

I was already asleep in the bedroom and had been for awhile.  My then-boyfriend Kevin was in the living room, presumably binge-watching Netflix or channel 11 and growling profanities at my pet duck.  I woke up when he opened the bedroom door, and I saw him standing there, just his dark silhouette in the doorway.  He loomed there looking at me for a moment, and then suddenly he threw himself on top of me, pinning me down with his weight.  I shifted under him as he started kissing my neck, telling him politely, “No, Kevin, not now.  I need to sleep.”  He didn’t stop, but grabbed my hands and held them down so I’d stop trying to push him away.  “No, stop, I have to work tomorrow.”  He was pulling my pajamas off and I started fighting, trying to push him and protesting, “Stop, stop!”  But he wouldn’t listen.  He said nothing, just held me down under the weight of his body, tearing at my pajamas, swatting my hands away when I tried to grab or shove him.  I was crying hysterically, protesting louder and louder, and we fought progressively harder.  It continued on, in a violent struggle on the bed, as he used his strength to try to get me naked and force me to compliance.

Then suddenly, the look in his eyes changed.  The animalistic passion disappeared and they became clearer.  It was almost like he suddenly remembered that rape is bad.  He stopped, rolled off me, and said sorry.  He fell asleep, and eventually after I’d calmed down, I admittedly went back to sleep next to him.

Worse things have happened to other victims of intimate partner violence.  I’m lucky that the lightbulb went off in his brain and he stopped trying to rape me.  But in those five minutes or so that he attacked me, I felt what it’s like to be a helpless victim of a physical assault.  Fortunately that was the extent of the experience. I’m also lucky that he was my boyfriend, so I consented to sex with him many times, though not that particular time. It would’ve been much worse if it was someone I never consented to sex with.  Regardless, it was not at all consensual by any stretch of the imagination.

People question why women stay with men who hurt them, and the reasons are usually very valid and important: financial dependence, fear of further violence, protecting the children.  But reasons of that magnitude are not why I stayed with him.  I stayed because I was so physically (though not very emotionally) attracted to him, and I stayed because I wanted to see where his music would go.  I also stayed because I felt sorry for him, for what a wreck his life was.  He still needed me.  But even though I stayed, things did change after that incident.  I saw a glimpse of the abuser he really was, underneath the charisma and charm.  My rose-tinted glasses came off, and what I saw was scary.  I should’ve explored those feelings further, but I didn’t at the time.

I didn’t tell anyone about it for almost six months, and even then, I only told a couple of my closest friends.  I was embarrassed, I guess, and while we were together I still wanted to protect him.  I didn’t want people to know he was capable of being violent.  But now I think it’s time for me to be open about it, because silence helps no one.  What happened to me is on the low end of the scale of intimate partner violence, but it was real and it was scary, and I have much sympathy and empathy for other victims.

So why speak out?  Just for awareness.  To remind people that these things happen, and they can happen to anyone.  Anyone can be a victim or a perpetrator.  Anyone can be hiding this secret.  Trust victims.  Believe them.

The Lifestyle

Here’s the thing about dating musicians: it’s only as fun as they are.  I’ve been accused of being a groupie just because of the lifestyle, not the music, and there’s truth to that.  After all, I’m not an artist.  I love music, but lots of people love music without that influencing the way they live.  The point of being a groupie is to be part of a certain lifestyle, a certain scene.

My new boyfriend isn’t a musician, but we have more fun together than I’ve had with any other boyfriend on a consistent basis.  We thrive on the same things–going to shows every Friday and Saturday, drinking and taking speed, and staying out till sunrise.  We’re so compatible in our interests and hobbies, because we both choose the same lifestyle.

Then again we’ve also talked about selling all our things and eloping to Ecuador to live off the land, so ya know. Options.


They rule, don’t they?  Such wonderful little experiences.  They’re extra fun to have with a partner, too.  I’m lucky enough to be having them with a partner again myself, for the first time in nearly a year–back in the early days of my last relationship when my ex was still willing to endure the incredible struggle that is touching my clitoris a couple times a month.  I digress.

I’m tough to get off though, so I’m very appreciative of the time and effort a man has to spend to make me come.  It requires a lot of communication, persistence, and pretty good lighting so we can both see what’s going on down there.  Most men aren’t as dedicated as my special guy, and I’m grateful for it.  He’s willing to spend significant periods of time massaging my clit like his life depends on it, and he’s very open and receptive to suggestions.  A lot of women aren’t as fortunate in that regard, because a lot of men just don’t care enough.

There’s much more to sex than an orgasm, too.  There’s all the glory of passion, degradation, vulnerability, power.  When I’m getting a good fucking, I’m not concerned about coming, because I’m having too much fun just being ravaged.  Still, it’s a special kind of wonderful being spread-legged on the bed, laying back and letting someone go to work on your parts.  Or, sitting up and getting in there yourself, showing them where and how it feels good, and looking into their eyes when they finally bring you off.  If only everyone could be so lucky.

I didn’t choose the slut life. The slut life chose me.

When you start your story with, “Every time I blow a strange man in a bar bathroom…” you kind of wonder if maybe you should set the standards a little higher.  But the way I see it is that, sure, I could give a guy my number and sit around waiting for him to maybe text me.  But if he doesn’t, I completely missed out on my opportunity to get that dick.  Whereas if I drag him into the bathroom and pull it right out, then I don’t have to worry that he’ll be one who got away.

I didn’t choose the slut life.  The slut life chose me.

I realize as I write this that I objectify these men.  That’s inherently anti-feminist, so I need to work on my viewpoint.  Maybe it’s just because I’m single again after a (mostly?) monogamous relationship, and I want to make up for lost time.  Relationships are the worst for me.  No matter how much I love someone, I just can’t handle having only one sexual partner.

This also brings me to a new money-making venture.  I’ve always been curious about escorting, but I’ve chickened out in the past.  Now I joined a sugar daddy dating website, and I’m going to start dating wealthy men for money and presents.  I haven’t been on any dates yet, but I plan to soon.  I’ll only go out with youngish, reasonably handsome men, though, because no amount of money in the world is worth having sex with someone I find gross looking.  I also think it’ll be interesting as a social experiment.  I plan to blog about my experiences, though I’ll obviously never post any identifying facts. I just think it could be interesting and insightful to others who’ve been curious about the lifestyle.

The other major change in my dating life is the revolutionary Tinder, which is a godsend during these brutal Midwestern winters. Since joining recently, I haven’t had to brave the harsh elements in order to venture out to some random bar in the hopes of meeting a decently attractive man. Instead, I’ve sat in the comfort of my home (or more likely, my work) and swiped my way through men until I found some I liked. A few messages later, I’ve got a new hottie balls deep.  And ideally, I’ve made a new friend.

Tonight, I’m skipping a show because I realized the guy I was planning on hitting on is wayyyyy too few degrees of separation from multiple other musicians I’ve slept with. While I love being a groupie, I’m trying to avoid the whole, “I slept with that chick Crystal, but who hasn’t?” situation. Do not want.

So yep. The sexcapades continue. I will keep the blogiverse informed of my experiences.