About three years ago. Actually it was almost exactly three years ago, I met someone I hit it off with right away. Her name is Rusty Blazenhoff. I got a package in the mail from her today that she told me she had shipped to me a few days ago.
As you can see in the previous post, I was having a rough day today. I was feeling all the hurt, sadness, and oppression in the world and it was causing me to be even more sensitive. So much so that when I saw a quote from a famous comedian today I took offense to it.
Well as is the case with me at times, I stood up and said “Hey this is actually REALLY fucked up y’all.” Well what ensued was a healthy debate with my friends about what I took issue with about the quote. I found myself being saddened by the position of some of my friends. I found myself learning things about them that saddened me.
Now let me stop you there. I wasn’t saddened by the things I learned because I felt it was wrong for them to feel them, I felt saddened because for some reason it reminded me of how bad I used to feel when I felt the same way. I guess I let this leak out into the world some today because I was buckling under the pressure. That is something I really need to work on.
Well, now that I have digressed, let me get back on course.
After I opened the package, I sent Rusty a message and let her know it had arrived. I can’t explain why but I decided to make a comment about how my day had gone in one of my messages to her. What this led to was a 2.5 hour long conversation with her about life, love, perspective, emotion, empathy, learning, sharing, and helping others.
I can’t thank her enough. I love her so much, she is the best adopted brother a guy could hope for. She helped me get back to center. She and I see the world through almost identical eyes. We share a very similar past and very similar experiences. She helped me remember all of the things I am supposed to be teaching everyone else.
We talked about good things. She reminded me that not everything in the world is shit and that even though the suffering and grief I was receiving was real, that there is a shit ton of good in the world too. We talked about her wonderful daughter. It reminded me that there is someone right in front of me who has a very good chance of growing up not broken. She reminded me of my niece who will in all likelihood grow up unharmed and loved by her entire family. She reminded me that not so long ago women could not vote. She reminded me that not so long ago black people couldn’t vote or eat in the same restaurant as others. She reminded me that not so long ago people OWNED people.
Then she reminded me of how far we have come. She reminded me of the immutable voice of the Internet and how the voice of what is right eventually always wins. She reminded me that things are moving forward and getting better. Most importantly, indirectly, she reminded me that I was stuck in the microscopic view again.
She helped me remember to zoom out and feel the entire universe as a whole. She reminded me that universally, there is a balance and that balance must be maintained. What does this mean?
In a single phrase…shit happens and you have to accept it and move on. Unfortunately people suffer and things go wrong. Unfortunately suffering for some reason is an easier emotion to receive from others than joy. Unfortunately sometimes there is more suffering than joy.
The important part to remember is that everything happens and is the way it is because that is the only way it could have happened or have been.
To my brother Rusty, you are awesome and I love you more than I could express. I feel very blessed to have you in my life. To the rest of my friends, I love you all very much. I know you all put up with a lot of shit from me because I over analyze everything. I know you end up in debates with me a lot because I like to reanalyze and tend to enjoy debate. THANK YOU for doing it.
I appreciate my friendship with every single one of you. I argue with you because I value your opinion and believe it or not, I consider every word you are saying and in quite a few cases have ended up changing my views a little. Most importantly what I would like to say to you is thank you for accepting me for who I am and how I am. Thank you for arguing with me. Thank you for not being afraid to stand up. Thank you for being honest with me and telling me when you think I am being an ass. I promise you that even though I seem like I am being an argumentative jackass or picking fights with you at times, I really have nothing but the utmost respect and love for you. If I didn’t I wouldn’t argue with you, I would just move on.
Claire, Ashley, I swear you two are my heroes. I might not even put up with the kind of shit from me you put up with from me. Thank you for taking the time to listen and talk to me and thank you for taking me seriously.
Claire, I hope I can be your straight gay boyfriend for years to come.
Oh and did I mention? Rusty has two of the most awesome pieces of media I have seen. If you know me (you are reading this so at this stage you most likely do) you know I do not read unless it is technical or an analysis.
Let me say this I read BOTH yes BOTH of these and not just because I think she is awesome but because the content is fantastic. She has an amazing perspective on the digital age and won’t let you forget how you grew up. It is refreshing, upbeat, cutting edge and nostalgic all at once. I guess you could say they ARE Rusty :). Give her a read, you won’t regret it.
Read her awesome culture blog here: http://www.blazenfluff.com
Sign up for her inbox zine here: http://www.electricdreaming.com
Peace, love, and happiness always,