Look what happened in Oakland | Tsem Rinpoche

Published September 27, 2014 by Patricia Snodgrass

Look what happened in Oakland | Tsem Rinpoche.

 

What a wonderful thing to do, and it has helped the community so much. I wish with all my heart I could set a Buddha statue out in my yard so he could bless my neighborhood, but like the prayer flags I erected, he would only get trashed. Still, I am happy for Oakland and am thrilled they are able to reap the benefits of Buddha in their midst.

Im in Lo e With a Zombie…NOT…

Published September 25, 2014 by Patricia Snodgrass

I tried watching Warm Bodies a few days ago. It was kind of cute but when the girls had sneaked the boy zombie into the compound and was putting make up on him, I had to find something else to do with my time.

I’m like that with pretty much all zombie films. The only one that I really enjoyed was the original Night of the Living Dead, written by George Romano. It had a really really good plot, great characters, excellent acting and the entire thing was so spooky and so creepy. And the ending was so shocking, but so accurate for the times. It is, by far, one of my favorite films.

I tried to watch Zombie Nation and Zombie Apocalypse (although I thought the fried twinkie munching redneck was hilarious) I really couldn’t get into them. Nor could I get into Walking Dead, which everyone I know seems to enjoy.,

The problem I have with zombies isn’t just the idea of what happens when all of humanity becomes eaten or turned into walking corpses, (who eats who? do the bigger zombies eat the smaller ones, or do they simply go dormant or do they wander around drooling and moaning for brains in some hope aliens land on the earth and the zombification of the galaxy can properly begin?

I think Space Dandy came up with the most rational idea. That somehow, if the entire universe succumbed to zombification, then at some point, everything would be at peace. Zombies would become vegans and learn to cope with their cannibalistic tendencies.

On second thought, maybe that’s NOT the most rational explanation. But I’ll take what I can get.

No, the reason why I don’t like zombies is because those fuckers stink.

Yes, they stink. and YOU KNOW they stink.

They stink worse than anything you can imagine.

Unless you spent any time around rotting human flesh, you cannot begin to imagine.

When I was in nursing school, I was assigned to the skilled nursing facility, which meant I did menial tasks and worked with old people, and that often meant I had to deal with wound care.

When I refer to wound care, I’m not talking about old people shooting it out in the rest home and I had to clean out gunshot wounds. I had to clean out decubitus ulcers, (more famously known as bedsores) which often happen when a patient is bedridden. It happens more often if the patient isn’t receiving good skin care.

Simply put, a decubitus ulcer occurs when someone is laying in one position, and oer a period of time, the flesh that is lying next to the bed’s mattress (for example) dies, quite literally. This is the same dead flesh you will find on a corpse.

So, smelling a decubitus ulcer–some are tiny and some are gargantuan and life threatening–smells just like dead, rotting flesh…Because that’s what it is. And when you spend your afternoons cleaning out these nasty rotting skin craters, you’ll develop an adverse reaction to zombie films too.

Or maybe not. Some nurses I knew got used to the smell. I wasn’t one of them.

And that smell is so awful, there is no word to describe it.

Well maybe barfmongous, but that’s not really a word.

And in my mind, a zombie carcass, especially one that has been shambling around for a while, one that’s full of disease, and rot and parasites, must smell exactly like that.

And I just can’t get past that smell. Or the thought of that smell. Or the idea of that smell.

So, I’m just not a fan.

Would You Put George Takei in an Internment Camp?

Published September 25, 2014 by Patricia Snodgrass

In the summer of 977 I had the great privilege to meet George Takei, one of the stars of the original Star Trek. As a girl who was enamored of Trek, recently graduated from High School and an maniac runner (I was up to 6 miles a day, asthma and all) I was thrilled he was coming to our neck of the woods. Little Rock, Arkansas.

Not only did I get to meet Mr. Takei in person (I had a picture but it got lost over the years) but I got to run with him on Saturday morning. I was one of the few people who could keep up, and despite that, I was a big sweaty glob of exhausted by the time we got back to the hotel. He was really kind, though, and thoughtful and so, so funny. And  I adored him, in fact, I still do.

I’m sure he doesn’t remember me at all, and since he has throngs of admiring fans, there is no reason why he should. But he did make a tremendous impression on me. Not only that he was really cute (I didn’t know he was gay at the time) but a great runner, and funny and kind, but because he opened my mind into a world I had no idea existed.  What he taught me wasn’t dharma related, not exactly, but what he did do was show me a completely new perspective of what I was taught in History class. And in retrospect, my compassion for the plight of Japanese Americans could have nudged me closer to Buddha’s path.

But that might be stretching things a bit.

For me, History consisted of what was actually Hebrew History (termed prehistory) Classical history, Greek and Roman…then there was a quick hop, skip and jump past the Middle Ages (because our school was heavily Protestant and nobody needed to know that the Catholic Church was the first church)

When i asked about Asian or (God help me) Russian history, my teacher glared at me and asked, “what are you, some kind of communist?”

And because of this, I spent the day being called a pinko, a communist and a fag.

I was none of these, but I was  curious. There were huge gaps of territory on the map and nobody seemed to know anything about what was going on. The best response I got at all was that nothing was going on in those regions, they were all godless heathens, and here, look at how wonderful the Romans were ,and then they became Christians and…King Author and Sir Galahad and…

Blah blah blah.

There was, however, one curious statement that I recall in US history when the teacher stated quite firmly, that there had never been an internment camp in the United States.

The thing is, I believed her. I was young, I was naive, and she made history such a dull subject, my only desire was to get out of it as quickly as possible and forget as much as I could ,so I didn’t spend any time investigating her remarks.

Then I met Uncle George and my perspective on what I had been taught was changed forever.

During the convention, he talked about his time spent in a Japanese internment camp in Arkansas. I was stunned. Never in my wildest dreams could I think that this sweet funny man was placed in prison for being born a Japanese American.

I was heartbroken. What happened to due process? I wondered. What happened to being innocent until proven guilty? And why was a small boy thrown in prison because he might be a threat? How could a small child be a threat to anyone?

Later, back in the late ’90’s I read his biography where he discussed his time there in length. Recently, he spoke about it again in an interview that I found here: 

Not only do I encourage you to read it, I implore you to read it. This is so deeply important, because there are those who are calling for us to put Muslims in internment camps, and the great majority of Muslims are just hard working Americans who want the same things as everyone else. Imprisoning them because of their faith makes no sense.

This isn’t about politics. This isn’t Conservative verses liberal (which is just fucking stupid) this is about what is right and decent as a human being. I would say that this is what separates us from the animals, but I never saw an elephant put anyone in a concentration camp.

But then again, I could be wrong.

This isn’t how we treat our American brothers and sisters. George Takei’s family were deeply loyal Americans and yet they were thrown in prison because of fear and ignorance. George himself was only 5 years old when the authorities came for his family. Could you, for just an instant, put yourself in their shoes? What would you do? How would you feel? What would you think?

I understand there are Muslim terrorists, I get that. I’m not stupid. But I know also that not eery Muslim is a terrorist, and I understand due process. And I understand every AMERICAN citizen, regardless of faith, is innocent until proven guilty.

There is no reason to imprison hard working loyal Americans of any race or religion because of fear and ignorance. It’s wrong. I’ll go so far as to say, it’s evil. Its a kind of evil that metastasizes. The Muslims you put in prison for being Muslim and suspected terrorists, could be the Buddhists, or Sikhs or Wiccan and Pagans.

Due process, people. Due process.

The internment camps, no matter how SOME people think, were NOT successful in preventing another attack on the United States. And repeating this tragedy will NOT make relations better, indeed, it will only make things worse.

Let us remember our lessons from history and not repeat those old mistakes.

Fox News Finally Loses It: Uses ‘Success’ of Japanese Internment Camps to Advocate Profiling Muslims Video.

Amazon Horrors

Published September 17, 2014 by Patricia Snodgrass

Yes, I know, I’ve railed against the indie publishing industry. And I still stand by what I have said. However, even I can tell there are certain advantages to indie publishing that can be used to further one’s writing career. And this is where Amazon Horrors comes in.

So, I’m indie publishing my shorter works, and you can find them under the tab AMAZON HORRORS The stories themselves are relatively short, long enough to read in a doctor’s or dentist’s office. And I did my best to keep the pricing to a minimum and still be able to get a little pocket change out of the deal. :)

Will it all be horror stories? No, I do write in other genres, but for the most part, yeah, there is a lot of horror in here.

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