AmeriCAN-DO Attitude

Are you an AmeriCAN or an AmeriCAN'T?

Obama’s Got a Really Bad Economy, but that’s Nothing that a Little Gay Marriage Won’t Fix!

Pretty damn sad that the SCOAMF’s solutions for the piss-poor economy he created remind me of jokes from Friends.

A couple months ago, the same joke could have been made while Obama and the Democrats were pushing the ridiculous “war on women” smear.

“Obama’s got a really bad economy, but that’s nothing a little free contraceptives won’t fix!”

Yeah, brilliant.

First he’ll fix the economy with contraceptives. Now he’ll fix the economy with gay marriage. I wonder what his next “fix” will be. If he even bothers to remember the economy at all…

[Scene: Central Perk, Chandler is reading on the couch while Joey, still suffering from his hernia, is returning with coffee for them both. After a series of grunts and groans he manages to painfully walk back from the counter, sit down, and slide Chandler his coffee.]

Chandler: Hey, will you grab me a cruller? (Joey starts to groan and get up.) Sit down! Will you go to the hospital?!

Joey: Dude! Hernia operations cost like, a lot probably. Besides it’s getting darker and more painful, that means it’s healing.

Chandler: I will loan you the money. Just go to the hospital and let’s just get that thing… pushed back in.

Joey: Thank you, but it would take me forever to pay you that money back and I don’t want that hanging over my head. Okay? Besides, as soon as my insurance kicks in I can get all the free operations I want! Yeah, I’m thinking I’ll probably start with that laser eye surgery too.

(Phoebe enters.)

Phoebe: Hey!

Chandler: Hey.

Joey: Hey!

Phoebe: What’s going on?

Chandler: Oh Joey’s got a really bad hernia, but that’s nothing a little laser eye surgery won’t fix!

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May 10, 2012 , 9:52PM Posted by | Barack Obama, Economy, GLBT Movement, Homosexual Movement | Comments Off on Obama’s Got a Really Bad Economy, but that’s Nothing that a Little Gay Marriage Won’t Fix!

It’s What You Do that Defines You

“I never stopped loving you.”
“I never stopped thinking about you.”

What is the purpose of these statements? What do they even mean? When a girl says them to a guy, are they supposed to mean something?

I’ve had things such as this said to me by girls who have lost touch with me over the years. At first, it sounds sweet and wonderful. “Wow”, you think, “she’s been loving me/thinking about me all these years.” But, really, what does that even matter?

Even if it were true, is that supposed to somehow make me feel good to know that a girl was loving me/thinking about me over the years, yet did absolutely nothing to make it known to me?

What is the point of loving someone if you don’t actually, you know, do something to show you love them? In other words, what is the point of loving someone if the object of your love does not even know or feel this love?

As stated in Batman Begins, “It’s not what’s inside that matters, it’s what you do that defines you.”

**********

This is actually an example of a broader point that hit me today regarding something completely different, but touches on the same theme: where people don’t pass on compliments or expressions of love or just positive statements to those whom they like, love or whose work/efforts/skill/character/actions/personality they appreciate.

I’ve been doing something for a while that I thought was something positive, to bring a little laugh and morale boost to some people. I was really proud of the last time I did it, putting a lot of effort into it and thought it would make a positive impression. Turns out the only feedback I received was negative. Sure, most were in jest. But I didn’t receive ANY positive comments. Nothing. Just the negative ones in jest. So, I decided then that people must really not care one whit about what I did, so I said ‘f#ck it, not gonna bother anymore’.

Then today I have someone tell me they were talking with others in the group I do this for and that they really liked it and hoped I continued doing it. The one person said that it was “the highlight of their week”. Well, for crying out loud, then, why the HELL don’t they tell ME this?! Instead of just talking among themselves. *I* didn’t have a damn clue whether anyone liked it, because they never told ME that they liked it. So how the hell was I supposed to know.

**********

Girl #1: “Said out of guilt.. I’m a chick .. I know”

Yeah, I knew that already, but figured I’d send the question out into the void anyway. It’s a self-serving statement meant to try to make up for whatever the one making the statement feels guilty about.

Girl #1: Yep!! Women and men are devious and sad.. The trick is to find someone who is not into the BS.. Real people are hard to find.. I have to say.. When I was very young .. I probably did the same thing.. I was a coward.. Didn’t want to hurt anyone.. honesty is always best.

**********

Girl #2: Sometimes it is said out of regret, or maybe even lonliness. The part that hit me today, though was: “What is the point of loving someone if you don’t actually, you know, do something to show you love them? In other words, what is the point of loving someone if the object of your love does not even know or feel this love?”

You are absolutely correct, Michael. While there are reasons that one may have for not, or never, sharing those feelings… what IS the point of telling someone you USED to think about / love them? Let them know at the time, or let it go.

EXACTLY. Especially since for some of us, it doesn’t matter anymore hearing those things. Over the years, I just assumed that I was such a worthless piece of crap that these girls could just so easily lose touch with me and never keep in touch. That’s what the years of girls just up and losing touch, and seemingly not being affected in the least, taught me…  that I meant nothing to them that they could get over me so easily, forget me so easily. So when one comes back to make those statements, it means absolutely nothing to me. I needed those statements during that time, at the time they felt them. By now, it doesn’t matter anymore. Their lack of action has helped to create the cynical, completely insecure, self-critical person I am now.

**********

Girl #1: Women also.. Want you to still want them.. So they say these things..

Yeah, like I said, it’s a completely self-serving statement. One to assuage their own guilt and Two to get an ego-boost. I tell you, the older I get and the more I interact with them, the more I resent women.

Girl #1: Please don’t turn gay!! Hahaha!!

Hahah, no, THAT will NEVER happen. I’m attracted to women WAY too much. In fact, I’ve got a desperate crush on a girl on one of my softball teams. Really depresses me that I’m so insecure that I haven’t been able to even muster up the courage to talk to her on a non-softball game level over the past year. I’m sure she’s got a boyfriend or is married and, even if she’s single, she’s 11 years younger and way out of my league, but… still. Back when I was in shape and not this cynical, I would have at least made the foolish effort to take a chance and ask her out. But no, no worries, not going to hit for the other team! hahah

May 9, 2012 , 9:34PM Posted by | Inspiration, Life, Love, Relationships, Romance | Comments Off on It’s What You Do that Defines You

Relationship Needs Assessment

Hmmm, so, on a whim, I decided to check out this site called Plenty of Fish. A friend had told me about it a while back and I’ve seen commercials about it from time to time as well. Well, I talked to that friend tonight for the first time in a while and it reminded me of that site, so… decided to check it out.

It’s nothing too spectacular or different from any other “online dating” site. But it does have its unique qualities to it. For example, you can request to not be matched up with people who provided certain answers on their profile, or with people who have searched for “hook-ups”, etc. So that’s kind of interesting. Matching filter in a way.

Then there are these “tests” that you can take where you answer a bunch of questions and receive an “assessment” of your personality or, in this case, a “relationship needs” assessment. I always find it interesting how a website can do a complete assessment of something so personal as one’s personality and desires in a relationship solely from a bunch of random personality questions. Here is the general description of their assessment technique:

Congratulations Chgofan3 on completing Plenty of Fish’s unique “Relationship Needs Assessment.” This assessment determines what you need in a relationship across nine key factors:

Interdependence
Self-Efficacy
Communication
Sexuality
Preferred Expressions of Affection
Intimacy
Relationship Readiness
Conflict Resolution
Attitudes About Love

Your report gives you valuable feedback on each of these factors in several special ways. Based on your unique answer patterns, you first receive a synopsis of what you need in a relationship on each factor. To help you address these issues in actual practice, your report also contains a customized set of questions for you to consider asking or exploring with potential dating partners to determine the degree to which a person may meet those unique needs. In other words, you have guidance for understanding and exploring what it takes for someone to be “relationship material” with you.

Finally, the assessment reveals any specific issues that you seemed especially to under-value or over-value. These are likes and dislikes that are often hidden from your awareness, but they can strongly affect your relationship decisions. Enjoy your report, contemplate the information and insights it provides and good luck in applying the results here at the Plenty of Fish community!

Here is what I received in response to my answers:

Interdependence

Interdependence refers to how much you need dependency or a “couple identity” with your partner.

You are moderately interdependent in a relationship. This means that you desire a good degree of physical and emotional connection with a partner. And you absolutely are drawn to someone whom you can respect and even emulate to some degree. In fact, it is quite common for a person in this score range to consider how your romantic partner would reflect on your family and friends. This all does not mean that you do not need personal space now and then; nearly everyone values being unique and different from others in some respects. However, people in this range draw strength, comfort and a strong sense of identity from their close relationships. Thus, when you feel close to someone this person becomes an extremely important part of who you are on the inside and outside. You probably prefer that you and your partner’s recreational activities be shared together since you like having your partner physically close and you desire showing off your “couplehood” in public. Bottom line: you need someone who likes frequent physical and emotional connection like you do, but who helps keeps dependency in check in the relationship so that you two do not lose your identities as individuals.

Next, PlentyofFish presents some customized probing questions to use “as is” or as inspiration to develop your own to help you explore your “interdependency” needs with potential partners:

“Do you think couples can ever get to the point when they spend too much time together? – and if so, how do you know when that point is?”
“How much time away from a lover do you think you need in a given week? – and what kinds of things do you like to do for yourself during your free time?”
“What really makes a date or any time with a partner truly special for you?”

Intimacy

Intimacy refers to the how much you need emotional closeness with your partner.

You are clearly comfortable with giving and receiving emotional intimacy. You long for emotional closeness and security with a special person, and you tend to be open with a partner in return. That openness includes lessons learned from your past experiences and relationships, extending trust, believing your partner returns your feelings and devotion and being generally comfortable with surrendering yourself to a partner. In fact, you probably would feel uncomfortable if there were serious secrets between you and your partner. Likewise, you probably regard a partner as your best friend and your foremost confidant. There is likely no hesitation discussing current problems or concerns with that person. It also seems that you have realistic expectations for a committed relationship. However, you may find yourself wondering whether your partner’s feelings are equally as strong as yours. Still, people in this scoring range are willing to take the risks associated with being vulnerable on many levels. Bottom line: you need someone who desires and reciprocates intimacy as much as you do.

Next, PlentyofFish presents some customized probing questions to use “as is” or as inspiration to develop your own to help you explore your “intimacy” needs with potential partners:

“Have you tended to avoid arguments with past partners or is it more like you to talk about all types of the feelings and concerns you have?”
“Do you think couples should always be open and honest with each other, or are there things that it is okay to hold back?”
“Can you talk and share on an intimate level as well as you listen to a friend in need?”

Food for Thought! PlentyofFish wants you to know about some idiosyncrasies the assessment identified in you. These are issues for you to contemplate on your own or explore with a professional relationship/dating coach.

Issues you seem to Over-value

It would bother me if I got attached to people very easily. Possible reasons you responded this way include negative motivations and positive motivations. On the negative side, it could mean that you are not truly committed to your partner, that you are selfish and self centered, that you are superficial in your relationships or that you have unrealistic expectations. On the positive side, it could mean that you have a healthy degree of individuality and independence or that you have a good understanding of your fears.

Self-efficacy

Self-Efficacy refers to your self-image, stability of mood and level of motivation.

You have good levels of self-esteem, sense of self and a sense of accomplishment. It seems you are acutely aware – but accepting – of your strengths and weaknesses. Likewise, you likely feel that people who are important in your life understand you. But people in your scoring range tend to be comfortable not giving in to peer, family and other social pressures. Family is indeed important to you, but their expectations do not strongly influence your life. Instead, people who score like you tend to have their own well-defined ambitions and goals – and may even set specific benchmarks to monitor the progress made toward achievements. You probably have a strong sense of control over your life and are decisive in managing it. You are also probably very influential and persuasive with others. In fact, your family, friends and acquaintances may often come to you for ideas of guidance across a range of issues. Bottom line: you need a partner who has a good degree of energy, enthusiasm and self-efficacy like you, as opposed to a partner who needs constant nurturance and reassurance to feel empowered and valued as person.

Next, PlentyofFish presents some customized probing questions to use “as is” or as inspiration to develop your own to help you explore your “self-efficacy” needs with potential partners:

“Do your positive qualities outweigh your faults? Why or why not?”
“Do you ever feel guilty when you do not meet the expectations of your family or friends? Explain”
“Are you the type of person who likes to stand out in a crowd or go totally unnoticed?”

Food for Thought! PlentyofFish wants you to know about some idiosyncrasies the assessment identified in you. These are issues for you to contemplate on your own or explore with a professional relationship/dating coach.

Issues you seem to Over-value

I find it pointless to continue working on things that are too difficult for me. Possible reasons you responded this way include negative motivations and positive motivations. On the negative side, it could mean that you are easily frustrated, that you are overly self critical and impatient or that you have little motivation to learn new things or tackle new challenges. On the positive side, it could mean that you are realistic about your limitations, you value time and do not want to waste it or that you seek out alternative solutions to problems.

Relationship readiness

Relationship Readiness refers to how prepared you are emotionally, psychologically and pragmatically for a committed relationship.

You seem to have a good foundation and appear pretty much ready and willing to find a committed relationship. In fact, most people in this scoring range have a clear vision and a sense of purpose for their life. They have the ability to connect with others, they have well defined ideas about where their life is headed and they are assertive and resourceful in meeting their goals. Therefore, you likely feel in control and are able to take charge and go after what you want in life and in a relationship. Your housekeeping is also probably in check – meaning that you do not have any negative baggage that can weigh down a relationship, like financial or legal problems or emotional, health or family issues. As such, you do not seem to be seeking a relationship primarily to fill a void in your life or to gain a feeling of acceptance and belonging that was weakened or lost due to other relationships that ended or disappointed you. Rather, it seems to be that you are striving for a balance in your life and that now includes wanting to offer everything you can to a partner. Bottom line: you need someone who wants a relationship, rather than needs one to feel personally fulfilled.

Next, PlentyofFish presents some customized probing questions to use “as is” or as inspiration to develop your own to help you explore your “relationship readiness” needs with potential partners:

“Tell me in what ways you are a happy and successful single”
“Are you truly happy with the way you have lived your life? Explain”
Are there any ways in which you feel your life is not balanced?”

Communication

Communication refers to your approach to interpersonal interactions and level of emotional intelligence.

Effective communicators have strong emotional intelligence, and you seem to fit this description. It is expected that you show considerable tolerance of ambiguity and emotional expression. You are usually extremely sensitive to other’s feelings and to their body language. Those who know you well would probably describe you as patient, open and eager to listen to others. People in this scoring range are also not afraid of making or admitting to mistakes. They consistently and bravely show vulnerability to others. In fact, they are constantly aware how their behavior impacts others. You can communicate your needs and feelings honestly when someone engages you directly, and you can take the initiative and be assertive when needed. However, a defining characteristic of people in this range is that they do not rush to judgment. Rather, they pay attention, listen without jumping to conclusions and then reflect on information before responding. In a sentence, you seek both to understand others and for others to understand you. Bottom line: you need someone who is eager to give, collect and discuss information with you patiently versus communicate with you on superficial levels out of convenience.

Next, PlentyofFish presents some customized probing questions to use “as is” or as inspiration to develop your own to help you explore your “communication” needs with potential partners:

“Does the success of a committed relationship take priority over any other aspect of your life?”
“Do those closest to you think that you are an easy person to get to know? Explain”
“If you are sure you are right about something, do you waste time listening to other people’s arguments or viewpoints?”

Food for Thought! PlentyofFish wants you to know about some idiosyncrasies the assessment identified in you. These are issues for you to contemplate on your own or explore with a professional relationship/dating coach.

Issues you seem to Under-value

I am able to confront someone who has hurt my feelings. Possible reasons you responded this way include negative motivations and positive motivations. On the negative side, it could mean that you avoid conflict, that you have difficulty articulating your feelings or that you are around others with whom you do not feel safe and secure. On the positive side, it could mean that you are aware of how your behavior impacts others, that you have a good understanding of your strengths and weaknesses, that you like to give others the benefit of the doubt and try to focus on positives rather than negatives or that you can forgive easily.

Conflict resolution

Conflict Resolution refers to your stress management and problem solving skills.

Effective conflict resolution has nine general elements: View Conflict as Positive; Address Conflict in the Proper Atmosphere; Clarify Perceptions; Note Needs, not wants; Draw on the Power of a Positive Partnership; Focus on the Future, then learn from the past; Identify Options for Mutual Gain; Develop ‘Doables’ or stepping stones to action; and Make Mutually-Beneficial Agreements. Your score indicates that you are generally strong across all of these basic elements. This suggests that you are very flexible and action-oriented when addressing problems, yet not so eager to find resolution that you settle for quick, temporary agreements. Settling on a temporary agreement is often a way of avoiding conflict, and it can lead to needs not being met. You do not seem to avoid conflict; instead you appear to evaluate the possible solutions and then actively engage your partner to work on a positive outcome that is best for the relationship. In fact, a defining characteristic of people in this scoring range is the capacity to relinquish their control and pride for the greater good and growth of the relationship. Bottom line: you need a partner who is patient, a “big picture thinker” and can relinquish control and pride to make the best decisions for the good and growth of the relationship.

Next, PlentyofFish presents some customized probing questions to use “as is” or as inspiration to develop your own to help you explore your “conflict resolution” needs with potential partners:

“In your past relationships, have you felt responsible for your partner’s well being? Explain”
“Is it the case that you can not be happy unless you place your partner’s happiness before your own?”
“What sort of things or situations would you not endure for the sake of your partner or relationship?”

Sexuality

Sexuality refers to your needs (frequency, boundaries, expressions) related to physical intimacy.

Scientific models of love and attachment always include physical chemistry and sexuality. It is a crucial topic for any couple to address, because it involves issues of control and vulnerability. People at your scoring level have a firm sense of their sexual orientation, preferred sexual activities and comfort level. You like sex that is romantic, adventurous and fun, but for you sex is not a casual event. Sex has great importance in your relationship, and it is reserved for someone you love. You may think your sexual preferences would be viewed as conservative by others, but you are no prude. You are confident in your own sexual ability and are open to try various activities. In fact, you probably like to experiment actively. A defining characteristic of people in this scoring range is their willingness to be vulnerable and relinquish control in the bedroom to their partners. In other words, you are not sexually selfish – you like to focus on pleasing your partner and submitting to his/her desires. Bottom line: you need someone who regards sex as a meaningful bond between people in love and who appreciates being the center of attention in the bedroom.

Next, PlentyofFish presents some customized probing questions to use “as is” or as inspiration to develop your own to help you explore your “sexual” needs with potential partners:

“Would you eagerly talk to your partner about your sexual fantasies?”
“Is it like you to direct your partner what to do in bed so s/he knows best how to please you?”
“In your mind, is there any difference between ‘having sex’ and ‘making love’?”

Food for Thought! PlentyofFish wants you to know about some idiosyncrasies the assessment identified in you. These are issues for you to contemplate on your own or explore with a professional relationship/dating coach.

Issues you seem to Over-value

I wait until I am in love with a person before having sex with him/her. Possible reasons you responded this way include negative motivations and positive motivations. On the negative side, it could mean that you are neither spontaneous nor passionate or that you are ambivalent. On the positive side, it could mean that you prefer a deep and meaningful attachment to a partner, that you have good self esteem, that you are neither selfish nor hedonistic or that you are not impulsive in thought, feeling and deed.

Attitudes toward love

Attitudes Toward Love refers to your level of needs for romantic love and friendship love.

There are two main types of love – Romantic Love and Companionate Love. Romantic Love is passionate, emotional and intense, whereas Companionate Love is a deep, affectionate attachment. People feel these two types of loves to different degrees in a relationship, and the levels of each can fluctuate over time. You scored as someone who may be best described as “a “hopeless romantic with a touch of realist.” This means that you do value the safety, security and comfort of Companionate Love, but for you a relationship must have a strong dose of Romantic Love. In this sense, you desire someone who is on the same wavelength as you –- sharing similar attitudes, moods and impulses. It is common for people in this range to view their partner as a soul mate –- a person who you were destined to meet and fall in love with. This attitude of “love conquers all” is optimistic and sweet, but it is not productive to remain in a “love daze” and idealize your partner constantly. Seeing a partner and relationship while only wearing rose-colored glasses can prevent you from identifying and addressing problem areas in the relationship. Bottom line: you need someone who satisfies the hopeless romantic in you but who will insist that you take time to get to know each other well before the taking the relationship to next levels.

Next, PlentyofFish presents some customized probing questions to use “as is” or as inspiration to develop your own to help you explore your “love attitude” needs with potential partners:

“In choosing a partner, do you believe it is best to love someone with a similar background? Explain”
“If you truly love another person, is that enough to marry or otherwise have a committed relationship with that person?”
“How do you feel about the notion that ‘common interests are really unimportant; as long two people are truly in love, they will adjust’?”

Preferred Expressions of Affection

Preferred Expressions of Affection refers to your likes and dislikes for different ways a partner can express love and devotion.

There are many ways in which people show affection to their loved ones: physical touch, doing favors, spending time together, giving gifts or communicating love through words. Statistically, you gave higher weighted ratings to Gifts. Bottom line: You need someone who can express affection through tangible surprises – such as fun gifts s/he makes, souvenirs purchased on business trips or beautiful tokens or presents that show s/he remembers and celebrates special occasions.

Next, PlentyofFish presents some customized probing questions to use “as is” or as inspiration to develop your own to help you explore your “affection” needs with potential partners:

“Is it more like you to surprise a partner with single, extravagant gifts or shower the person with little gifts or surprises here and there?”
“Is it difficult for you to come up with personalized gift ideas for loved ones?”
“Do you think giving gifts is really just an attempt to buy someone’s affection?”

Out of the various modes of expressing affection, Actions received lower weighted ratings from you. Bottom line: This does not necessarily mean that you neither like nor need Actions. Rather, it suggests that you need someone who feels that simple or grand acts of kindness are no substitutes for other expressions of affection – such as telling you how they feel, treating you like a partner, touching you lovingly, spending time with you or remembering special occasions with a thoughtful gift.

Next, PlentyofFish presents some customized probing questions to use “as is” or as inspiration to develop your own to help you explore your “affection” needs with potential partners:

“In what ways – if any – do you like for a partner to depend on you?”
“Have you offered to throw a party for someone? – if so, why did you take on that responsibility?”
“What are some things you have done for other people that they would say were the most thoughtful?”

May 5, 2012 , 9:17PM Posted by | Life, Love, Relationships, Romance, Sex | Comments Off on Relationship Needs Assessment