• @griz same. for all the trouble there was around my family of origin home, we always had Christmas

  • @ladybarbara the universe acts in strange ways sometimes. Will IP wrap your gift? Are either of you having trouble with the site? There is something wrong causing me not to be able to start a convo.

  • @ladybarbara my niece loves Christmas tamales!

  • do you have any holiday traditions? Also, are there any Christmas memories that seem to stand out to you?

    • My Mom would purchase a white tree and decorate it with blue decorations. It was 5 ft. tall and stood on a huge round coffee table that was once a dining room table. Each family bought presents for the members of the other families, and that was loads of presents!!! The first layers of presents went on the floor around the table. Three layers up, the presents were stacked on the table — and some leaning on the tree. One year, the presents were stacked so high that we just saw the ornament at the top of the tree. My Dad (who was Jewish and objected to the celebration) pointed out how insane this was. (But, we ignored him and had our big family ham dinner in spite of him.)

      In our celebrations, kids plates get filled first, then the men, and women were last to be served. That way, the women would look at what is left in the dishes, and knowing what had to be put away when the table was cleared, each woman would take a few extra bites just to empty the dish.

      The unwrapping of gifts was so hectic with wrapping paper, ribbons, and boxes flying around the room in clutter you could not walk through. We did not get to see the individual’s delight, as they opened their presents. It was like a flurry of greed!!!

      This would be followed by the men circling the TV and falling asleep as the football game lit the room. The women were washing dishes and then pies of all kinds were served. My Mom would be begging the men to have pie, but they were all drinking beer and beer doesn’t mix well with fruit pies. The women sat and ate pie and talked. The women cleaned up the messy room and men carried boxes of presents to the car. Then they carried sleepy children to the car.

      It was Christmas Eve and each family put their children to bed, so that they could stay up all night assembling toys until 5:30 am. Then, adults got just a little sleep, until the kids woke them up at 6:00 am to joyfully shout out what Santa had brought them!!!! —- Still half asleep, we would watch the children enjoy their toys. It was Christmas.

      The only change to this came when I was married to Lowell Henry and had his two boys for Christmas. My husband’s ex-wife would burst through the front door with Christmas tamales that she INSISTED we had to eat!!! So, I knew not to cook anything for Christmas, because Silvia was there with Christmas tamales, a Mexican tradition.

      • @ladybarbara my niece loves Christmas tamales!

        • @Scarlett I was not raised with them. My 5th husband had two sons from a previous marriage and his ex-wife used to burst into my household and demand that we eat the tamales that she cooked for Christmas. I don’t like it when someone comes bursting in my door and shoving her way in to insist that I change ANYTHING. One year, I was in the middle of serving my husband and the kids a pancake breakfast. Sylvia (the ex wife) bursted in and took my pancakes out from in front of my husband and the kids. She grabbed my plate and I hit her. My husband and the kids hung their heads in hang-dog fashion and said, “We have to eat these, Mom said so.” As much as I did love each of Lowell Henry’s ex-wives, I resented being pushed aside in my own house and bossed around. I do love tamales, but Silvia’s tamales were not very tasty. They had a bitter undertone to the taste. After the attack on my pancake breakfast, I gave in and never fixed Christmas pancakes again.

          My husband’s ex-wife painted a plaque for my kitchen that said, “It may not be like your home, but you must adapt to it.” I hung it in my kitchen anyway, —- even though it was insulting. Those kids were born and raised in my house and considered it “home”. Their mother remarried and lived in Arizona, in a new house. She wanted the kids to think of her new house as “home”. I gave in and did not argue.

    • My late husband, Lowell Henry, hated to buy gifts. He never wrapped any gift he bought. He presented it in the store bag, pointing out that the bag was decorated with the store name and maybe Christmas salutations. He would tie the bag handles together and ….. it was wrapped!!!

      One year, he bought me a crow bar (pry bar) because it was green. He put a red bow on it and presented it to me in the tan Home Depot bag. I laughed at such a gift, but when re-doing the bathroom, it came in handy for removing the baseboards. Now, 17 years later, Immortal Pirate used it to remove the old kitchen sink and we replaced our sink with a new stainless steel sink. It was the big Christmas present that we each gave one another. That crow bar came in handy.

      • @ladybarbara the universe acts in strange ways sometimes. Will IP wrap your gift? Are either of you having trouble with the site? There is something wrong causing me not to be able to start a convo.

        • @Scarlett There are times that Immortal Pirate wrapped a present to give to me. Mostly, between us, we buy the gift right in front of the other and say “Merry Christmas!”, or “Happy birthday!”, then give it as is.

          This Christmas, I had my heart set on a silver bracelet I saw in the store. Immortal Pirate bought the bright and shiny bracelet that was next to it that had yellow gold designs on it. I do not wear yellow gold. He let me open the box and see the bracelet he bought. I was disappointed because I will not wear gold. It was a beautiful bracelet that I would not be wearing. He went back to the store and exchanged it for the silver bracelet that I had my heart set on. It is silver feathers and has a Native American design. I am glad that he did not wrap the first bracelet and put it with the presents on the decorated pirate ship — to wait for Christmas. Because it was a same day return and exchange, it was easier to exchange. Now, I am wearing my Christmas present from my Pirate. I think of our love every time I look at it on my wrist.

    • Decorating the pirate ship in my dining room with strings of Christmas lights.

    • The whole Christmas season was beyond magical for me. Despite meager means we always had something in the stocking and something under the tree.

      Perhaps that is what made it all the more miraculous? I knew the folks could not afford it.

      Yet somehow they always did.

      We survived.

      And we flourished.

      Despite the odds.

      And despite the realities!

      Maybe that’s what Christmas is all about?

      • @griz same. for all the trouble there was around my family of origin home, we always had Christmas

        • @Scarlett
          That’s perhaps the proverbial Christmas miracle?

          Managing to give what one cannot (or barely) afford unto the blessing of another?

          I’m thinking more of generosity of spirit than commercialism or materialism. Though poverty does seem to have an advantage in this over riches.

          (But here’s hoping people don’t enslave themselves to debt just to try and prove this!)

    • Growing up, the 1st Lutheran church i attended, we made homemade ornaments for their Christmas tree every year. We also had a potluck afterwards did carol-sings in the area

    • Going to visit the family in my hometown.

      Best memory, standouts, hard to say. Certainly recall an early christmas eve at the old house, where we stayed up a bit after the christmas party and just admired the tree. I don’t recall the party, but the audience back then was huge.

      Otherwise, I recall fondly a Christmas after Star Wars, and getting Star Wars gifts. Star Wars was a huge point of hope, in my life.

      No irony to the later retitling, a new hope.

      Like much mythos metaphors, this one had substance: empire is defeatable by heart.

  • @griz I am certainly not for any adult having this type of relationship or resembling anything close to it to a child. However, I think you may be being facetious with your answer. In any case, was wondering about the power dynamics at play between say a 28 year old male with a teenage girl versus what happened here…

  • it is a commonly held belief among thinkers that humans are essentially biological computers. If true, does this eliminate the need for a god concept?

    • no

    • Possibly. The reason why people need the concept of a divine being are… varied. It can be everything from that the believer was brought up in the tradition to they tried other things and this is the only thing that worked to it provides them comfort in “knowing” they’ll see their loved ones again. With any of these concepts, it’s possible that the fact we are biological machines mean nothing.

      Having said that, the concept of the divine can be seen as a needless redundancy, both unneeded and unwarranted given the lack of evidence, the vagueness of the both the promises and the prophecy contained therein, scientific implausiblility of some of its statements (talking snakes… when they have neither the mouth structure nor the brain capacity to do so), the lack of answers to prayer (how many people have prayed for a disease to be eliminated or war to stop forever?), as well as the stupidity of the commands (if you need a book to tell you not to steal, kill, or rape… you don’t belong in society.)

    • I make a horrible computer because I still count on my fingers.

      I took math classes in college, but only held a 4.0 average because I was allowed to use a calculator in class, and I do everything four times to make sure I get it right. However, anything I learned about measurement went right out of my head out here in life where I don’t use it. In my world Pi are not square. Brownies are square and pie is round. If pie are square then it is a cobbler. Cake can be square or round. Yep. As a computer I would be very poor in quality. My life narrowed when I got out of manufacturing and measurements. It narrowed even more when running a maid service. It narrowed to bookkeeping skills. Now that I am retired, my math skills stop at cooking measurements. That would be a piss poor computer.

      As for God? I still need to believe that there is something greater than us, an unknowable essence. It is something that I can mutter to as I go about my day.
      “Oh, God, I am dropping food on the floor.”
      In that case, a Dog is a good thing to have. Dogs live for the moment I drop food on the floor.
      Well, God is an invisible entity and I talk to him more and more, as I get older.

    • I basically see us as androids. I view free will as an illusion. People operate according to programming instructions given to them by society. God controls their preferences. These are their preferences. To live by a robotic ‘do this, do not do that’ code. Exactly like programming code. (I would know.)

      They only believe what they want to believe, based on their preferences. Their preferences are set by many factors, but their experiences in life is a major one. They have no control over that.

      So, they have no freedom to believe what they should believe, they have no freedom to believe truth. They only have the freedom to believe what they can, again, based on their preferences.

      There is freedom from all of this. It is the ability to perceive. Improved sense.

      That freedom makes us robots awake, alive, true living beings. And we find ourselves amongst the sleeping masses: the clock they believe has no maker, the story they believe has no writer.

      The irony of this is shocking, as they pay lip service to belief in design. But, it is a child’s conception, they believe there is free will. That they are free to live lives where they are bound to follow ‘do this, don’t do that’, instead of breaking free from the world’s standards.

      • @five2one if god controls their preferences, then how can people change? Think about it: in the bible god makes it very clear “i change not.” It should be impossible to change because god doesn’t change.

        • @Jear77
          Classic abdication of responsibility thinking.

          • @griz given you believe in an omniscient god… it’s really not. It’s only logical!

            • @Jear77
              That someone somewhere might know more than me, is no reason to abdicate responsibility in this moment.

              Whether to self, to the nurturing/protecting construct, or to reality.

              Do you have a responsibility for any reality beyond the one of imaginative speculation where you exist all alone?

    • Only if we wish to become nothing more than machines!

      • @griz there is a huge benefit to being a machine. With proper programming, information, machines are perfect.

        • @Jear77
          Can you name one of our creation that is?

          To suppose there is might be analogous to that Banach-Tarski paradox where possible “essential parts” are left out and considered “unimportant”.

          • @griz there are a few benefits to this:
            if one program doesn’t work, it can be tweaked until it does.
            If one format doesn’t work, anpther one may
            machines are basically infinitely replacable, though at some point it would be like the ship of Thebes.
            And because we would be literal machines, we wouldn’t have to worry about mortality. Just upload the program into the cloud and redownload elsewhere.
            We need to do multiple places at once? We can have an infinite number of copies walking around.

            • @Jear77
              What program exists that this has happened for?
              It seems to me even the most functional programs/apps are always trashed for something that is flashier, that is a greater hog of resources, but never seems to be as functional as what it replaced.
              While I don’t discount that there may be “formats” [for life ideally] that haven’t been tried. But chances are beyond excellent that there truly is “nothing new under the sun”. That is why cautions and advices written thousands of years ago are just as applicable today as then.

              Machines are to be used and trashed.
              But I refuse to put people in this category. To do so involves slaughtering essential parts of what makes them people with agency.

              There are numerous sci-fi memes where the fear of death caused the hapless to give up what turned out to be the most missed . . . for the sake of entrapment in something that turns out to not be what they speculatively imagined it would be.

              And I think there is “ancient wisdom” regarding this too: trading away something of great value in the long run, for something that turns out to be anti-valuable in the long run.

              You maybe need to read more.
              (And yes, even the financially challenged find time to read. Ask almost anyone who has proactively charted a course out of relative poverty).

  • @Jear77 no not rele. I think the mechanic sees vulnerability in a female and can sell something.

  • @immortal_pirate luckily for me I am not in a toxic relationship. I have been in some in the past, though. I am not sure what I think on the bonus question. I do believe that a relationship can go through an unhealthy period and then re-stabilize itself if one or. other people are committing to changing whatever it is that caused the unhealthy to…[Read more]

  • @ladybarbara I am glad to hear you feel like the relationship is healthy. Part of being healthy is both people in the relationship getting their needs met, imho.

  • Wondering your thoughts on this? Does this have the same gravity as a Male teacher sending nude photos to a 15 year old student or is that different? There could be more to the story than what we see but does

    • I think the idea is not applying a sexist interpretation to law.

      If indeed this is the law we want to have, we cannot have differential application based on sex. True equality cannot have women receiving entitlement consideration and a soft hand where a man must face the fullest duty responsibility and consequence under force of the law. Equality cannot be “just when convenient/it favors me”.

      But the jury (actual or proverbial) has still not even been selected. Still it’s a safe bet that even if convicted, she will likely get a much lesser sentence than a man would in similar situation.

      • @griz I am certainly not for any adult having this type of relationship or resembling anything close to it to a child. However, I think you may be being facetious with your answer. In any case, was wondering about the power dynamics at play between say a 28 year old male with a teenage girl versus what happened here…

        • @Scarlett
          I play some Devil’s Advocate with the silly ideologies that seem to hold the media, education system, intelligence and critical thinking abilities of our culture hostage.
          Because they are deserving of it.

          We have classified an adult sexting a minor as criminal predatory behavior. Should different outcomes result based on sex? Do we throw the book at one, and special considerations at the other? Hot stove principle.

          I think an important question that needs to be asked, is whether true and total equality between men and women is even possible?
          Are there sufficient differences (strengths/vulnerabilities/ biological and psychological realities) as to warrant one receiving special privileges and entitlements under culture and law, that the other is bound by culture or law to render unto them but should not expect for themselves?

  • a cabin filter for my car, although I am not entirely sure that it was needed. I think maybe the mechanic said that to make money.

  • the last thing I watched was a show called Casual on Hulu. Also watch the marvelous mrs maisle on amazon prime, as well as old twilight zone episodes

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