You are born a baby, and I hope that changes

cute_baby_wallpaper_9447399219

I don’t know if this baby is a boy or a girl or neither or both, but it’s adorable

One of the great things about being human is that we can change, adapt, grow, and otherwise alter the malleable aspects of who we are. At the same time, we are defined to some extent by what we’re born with. Autism, gender, skin color, even the built-in genetic code for how tall you can get…there are so many things that appear to be unchangeable.

Then people argue about whether or not they actually are, and we find thousands of other factors that may or may not influence the outcome of a certain trait. Your diet affects how tall you actually grow, for example, while the severity of autism appears to be affected by a large variety of different things depending on the individual. But there’s still a maximum height set by genetics, and someone whose autistic symptoms are reduced still has autism.

Humans are incredibly complex little beings who really want to figure themselves out, and we don’t seem to be doing a great job of it. Take gender and sex. Some say gender is decided from the beginning and is the same as biological sex. Some say gender and sex are two different things and they can either match or not, but they’re still fixed. Some say gender is fluid.

Continue reading

How to not drive like an assbutt

Supernatural

“Dammit, Cas!”

It has occurred to me that perhaps the large number of incompetent drivers on the roads just need some clear tips on how to drive. As someone who has been driving for eight years without incident—aside from a few close calls mostly caused by other drivers—perhaps I am qualified to write a rant on the matter.

This will mostly concern the proper way to drive in heavy traffic, as I have noticed many bad habits that only help to make the problem worse.

First, following distance. Seriously! If you’re traveling at 88 feet per second in a two-ton collection of predominantly metal parts, don’t follow me so closely that if I were to utilize my awesome brakes to avoid hitting an unexpected obstacle in the road, you would slam into me literally before your brain has time to tell your foot to move. It doesn’t matter if you want to go 20 mph over the speed limit and I’m only going 5 mph over in the fast lane, that’s still no excuse to tailgate me. And in heavy traffic, leave at least enough space for two or three cars to safely merge in front of you, even if traffic comes to a stop.

Continue reading

We’ve Forgotten What Romance Means

Romance

It’s romantic when the sun is near the horizon, apparently

When people get caught up in a fight over ideas, they often begin to lose sight of what those ideas actually mean. Through the sexual revolution, and the ensuing conservative backlash, the whole issue at the core of the matter seems to have been pushed out of sight.

We have liberal thinkers who see conservative ideas about love and romance as constricting and stuck-up rules, and respond with resistance against any rule. And we have conservatives who see the liberal ideas as threatening their ability to live according to their principles, and respond with the application of more and more specific guidelines designed to prevent their followers from even considering liberal ideas.

I believe the petty battle can be narrowed down to a misunderstanding of romance. Conservatives and liberals alike use the word to describe the happy, sappy experiences of a couple in love doing things that only a couple does. And while this is a valid definition of the word in our current culture, the reason it’s a valid definition, the original concept of romance, is what we’ve lost.

Continue reading