lifebeyondexaggeration

What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Stranger

A Toilet Utopia September 12, 2017

Filed under: Tales of Travel — meganorussell @ 12:30 pm
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If you ever have a chance to go to the Cliffs of Moher, go. I don’t care if you’re not a Harry Potter fan and don’t want to see where Voldemort hid a horcrux. The cliffs are breathtaking.

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And while you’re there, go to the bathroom.

I’m not kidding. Not only is it a trek so you should use the bathroom while you have the chance, it’s also an interesting cultural experience. You see, it’s one, large, unisex bathroom with like thirty stalls. Like Ally McBeal style.

My husband and I both had to use the bathroom, so we followed the signage and arrived at a door. We both looked around for a Men’s vs. Women’s room sign, but there just wasn’t one. And we weren’t the only confused people, mind you. There were like five of us hovering outside the door, trying to figure out who got to go in and pee.

Then men and women came out of the same bathroom, so we all went in. (more…)

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A Drag of an Issue August 11, 2017

Okay…I need to be a human for a second.

There’s this whole thing with authors where you’re never supposed to respond to a negative review. It totally makes sense. You’re not going to change a reader’s mind once they’ve decided they don’t like your work. All responding to them is going to do is make you look unprofessional and open the flood gates to internet trolls.

But here’s the thing. I just got a review on a book that hasn’t even been released yet, and the reader thinks my book is “transphobic.”

Frist off, I’m not transphobic. I’m all for everyone’s right to live life as one’s truest self. Second, the character they think I’m misgendering isn’t transgender but rather a drag queen.

My first thought was that maybe I had somehow implied that said character was transgender, in which case my reference to her being occasionally and originally male would be terrible. I thought I had been clear that the character was a drag queen, but maybe I had missed something. Then I reread the book blurb. (more…)

 

Love is Love June 27, 2015

Here’s the thing. I’m a music theatre baby. More than half of my male friends are gay with a fair helping of lesbians, bi-sexuals, and transgendered goodness sprinkled on top. I never knew when I was growing up that being gay was a weird thing. I thought it was like having green eyes or an outie belly button. Just another subtle difference between people. Not really a thing to be concerned about. Never an issue to be judged. I took me a long time to figure out why being gay would make you part of the dreaded other in modern society, and truth be told, I still really don’t get it.

Yesterday marked a huge leap forward in gay rights, helping America to take a step toward true equal rights. Equal rights meaning, yes, ALL of us are equal. It’s not just women or black people or gays or Muslims who get screwed every now and then. It’s all of us. How can you claim to be forced into the margins of society while you are pushing others there? If you’re a Muslim and feel persecuted for your religion, then you know what it’s like to be pushed aside. If you’re black and worry that the dreaded authority will never treat you as an equal, then you know what it’s like to fear attack. If you’re a woman who has been treated as less than because of how you were born, then you know what it’s like to fight the odds. And if you are a white man of whatever religion is popular today, then you know what it’s like to fight a stereotype.

So let’s all agree that at the core of every individual the fact that we are human is our most defining trait. We all deserve human rights.

I have gay friends who have been with their partners for years, and not one of them has ever complained that they wanted to get married in a specific church that wouldn’t allow it. They were terrified that if they or their partner had to go to the hospital, they wouldn’t be granted the same visiting rights as a straight married couple. That if something happened to them, their partner wouldn’t be able to inherit their joint property without a fight.

The desire to take care of the people you love is human. It’s not gay or straight. It has nothing to do with religion or what sex organs you were born with.

So if you and your God don’t agree with homosexuality, that’s your own deal. But I don’t think any scripture has ever said that we shouldn’t take care of the people we love. The bible preaches love. And love means being by someone’s side in their most joyful moments and through their most terrible pain.

Granting marriage equality isn’t going to change how gay people have sex. That’s been going on for thousands of years, and no ruling will ever change that. But the ruling of the Supreme Court will grant a lot of really amazing human beings the ability to protect the people they love. To ensure that, in sickness and in health, they can keep their partner by their side.

It’s not about sex. It’s about love. And love is a human right.

 

Greetings, Human February 23, 2015

Filed under: I Meant Well — meganorussell @ 8:30 pm
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So, here’s the thing. Yes, it is going to be another one of those posts. I am all about gays’ rights. Gay marriage, for instance. I don’t see why a person being gay should have anything to do with their status as a human being. Ever since I was a little girl, I could never grasp why some people made such a big deal about it.

The same thing goes with transgendered people. If you need to change what you look like to match what you feel like, go for it. Live your life. Be happy. Miserable people rarely contribute to the world. And when they do, it’s usually really sad art before they cut off their own ear and die. So, let’s make happy art and be happy people.

But I need a word. I need a non-gender-specific version of sir and/or ma’am. (more…)