Medical Marijuana

medical-marijuanadesignMarijuana. Pot. Dope. Weed. We all know what it is. A big majority of us have even tried it or done it for a while. I did in college. I’m not going to sit up here and lie about it. I was a pot head in college. Wake and baker. But I grew out of that phase. I’m pushing 30 years old now and I have no desire to smoke it anymore. But back then it was a big part of my life. Now this isn’t going to be a big post of me preaching to you all. Rather it’s about medicinal uses of marijuana. When I was in high school I witnessed first hand the power marijuana had for a medicinal purpose.

I was volunteering in a nursing home back in high school (I wanna say it was my sophmore year). I helped with pretty much everything there but I loved the one job that allowed me some quality time with the residents. Smoking time. I would take this one guy, who we’ll call George since I don’t remember his actual name, to the smoking room to have his cigarette breaks. He smoked the little Swisher Sweets cigarettes. It was one of the highlights of his day. We’d play cards or checkers, etc. It was a fund time and made me not hate the job so much. George was blind which made it interesting playing checkers and cards (I always won figure that.) One day he tells me to go in his drawer that he kept his smokes in. He then says “You’ll see a baggie with some joints in it. Grab one of them for me.” I was caught off guard to say the least. I’m 15 and never had seen weed before, but I knew it was illegal though so I asked him how and why he had it. He tells me that his son brings it in occasionally so that he, George, can smoke it and feel better.

Curious I asked him how it made him feel beter because mind you all I’d ever seen about pot was the D.A.R.E. drug program videos on it back in elementary school. He tells me that it lets him see for a few minutes everytime he smokes he. See George was blind because of cataracts. It was a way for him to get his sight back even if it was just a little bit of it for a short period of time. I’d wheel George in his wheelchair over to the sliding glass door on his room that went outside to a little patio/garden area to smoke his joint. I knew it worked because he’d tell me what I was wearing, etc. He could see me. It was mind blowing that this drug that everyone had said was so horrible could provide such a short but joyous moment for this old man. He told me he usually smoked it only when his grandkids were coming to see him so that he could see their little faces.

So do I support medicinal use of marijuana? Yes I do. I do think there should be limits though. I’m also FOR for the legalization of mariuana. There is plenty of research out there to show what exactly marijuana can help with as far as medicinal. Below is a map of the states in the US which currently have effective laws for medical marijuana usage.

So what are your thoughts on this subject? Do you support medical use of marijuana? Do you support legalization of marijuana overall? Post your comments and let me know.

medical_marijuana_usa1

Gay Marriage: Part 3

bartzSee the guy on the left? His name is Senator Merlin Bartz. He is on a statewide push for county recorders in Iowa to refuse to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Gay couples are allowed to start applying  for them Monday, April 27th.

Along with the Iowa Family Policy Center, Senator Bartz has a petition (see it here) posted on his website along with steps to take to encourage county recorders to resist the court’s ruling starting Monday. The thing is the Iowa Attorney General’s office has told county recorders that they do not have the ability to refuse marriage licenses to same-sex applicants. The Iowa Department of Public Health issued a statement this week that said that the recorders to not have the “discretion or power to ignore the Supreme Court ruling” and that if they did “failure to comply could lead a recorder to be removed from office immediately.”

Bartz was quoted in the Quad Cities Times Wednesday as calling the Attorney General’s statement a “veiled threat” and questioned why the AG is taking such a strong stand on this issue but has been relaxed on the enforcement of other state laws such as immigration, smoke-free workplaces, etc.

A complaint has been filed with the Senate Ethics Committee by Representative Ed Fallon this week in regards to Bartz’s and his mission to get county recorders to ignore the law.

So do all of us Iowans a favor and email, call, write, etc. Senator Bartz and tell him how you feel about what he is doing. Here is his contact info.

Senate District 6
2081 410th St.
Grafton, IA 50440
Phone: 641-748-2724
Email: merlin.bartz@legis.state.ia.us

And if you’re in Iowa please do not sign this petition. It’s no different than signing a petition that you are against blacks and whites getting married. Think about it.

Gay Marriage: Part 2

So I was doing some research last night on same-sex marriage and was trying to find out just how far behind we are in the United States compared to the rest of the world. You’ll find some maps below, from Wikipedia, showing gay marriage in the United States, Europe, and the whole world.  While we may not be far behind some countries look how far behind we are compared to Europe, one of our closest allies. And take a look at Canada on the World map. Same-sex marriage is now recognized in the ENTIRE country. Wow. Way to go you crazy Canucks. Least there’s one thing you all have done that I can applaud you for! I’m working on trying to get a guest post on here soon so keep an eye out for that.

United States

Source: Wikipedia
Source: Wikipedia

?? Same-sex marriages

?? Unions granting rights similar to marriage

?? Unions granting limited/enumerated rights

?? Foreign same-sex marriages recognized

?? No specific prohibition or recognition of same-sex marriages or unions

?? Statute bans same-sex marriage

?? Constitution bans same-sex marriage

?? Constitution bans same-sex marriage and other kinds of same-sex unions

Europe

Source: Wikipedia

Source: Wikipedia

?? Same sex marriage recognized

?? Civil unions recognized

?? Unregistered cohabitation recognized

?? Issue under political consideration

?? Unrecognized or unknown

?? Same sex marriage banned

World

Source: Wikipedia

Source: Wikipedia

?? No information

Homosexuality legal
?? Same-sex marriage recognized
?? Other type of partnership (or unregistered cohabitation) recognized
?? Foreign same-sex marriages recognized
?? No recognition of same-sex couples

Homosexuality illegal

?? Minimal penalty

?? Large penalty

?? Life in prison

?? Death penalty

Gay Marriage

So I’m going to try and jump on a topic that isn’t going to end up sitting well with some people in my life. That’s the topic of gay marriage. Recently the Iowa Supreme Court ruled that same-sex couples had a right to get married and upheld a county judge’s ruling in September 2007 that overturned the state’s ban on same-sex marriage. Starting this Monday, April 27, 2009 they can start applying for marriage licenses. The only thing left is for the Iowa Constitution to be re-written to say this, but it’s happening. And of all places it’s happening in Iowa, a middle-America, farming state. It’s kind of funny that it can get approved here in Iowa but not in a state like California. One of the most liberal states in the entire United States.

When I heard the news of this I immediately texted a gay couple that I am dear close friends with. They both were ecstatic. They are two of the nicest women you’ll ever meet and I love them to death. They were there for me when I was really low at the beginning of my divorce and have been a rod and a shoulder to lean on cakeall the way through it. They were the first ones I texted when the divorce was final. I’m so happy that they’ll finally get the chance to get married. Why shouldn’t they be able to? Why shouldn’t they be allowed to have the same rights I had when I was married to my ex-wife?

Now starts the part that is gonna get me some emails or comments, etc. that aren’t going to be pretty.

See I was raised a Baptist Christian. I believe in God, Heaven, Hell, that you must be saved and ask Jesus into your heart to go to Heaven, etc. I was also raised that gay people are sinners and will burn in hell unless they repent and change their ways. Well you know what? I’ve grown up. I’m almost 30 years old. I’ve seen the world and realized that not everything I was taught is necessarily true. See I was raised that being gay is a choice. I used to believe that 100%. Not anymore. I’m sorry but it’s not a choice. Did you CHOOSE to be straight? As a male did you CHOOSE to find women attractive? As a female did you CHOOSE to find men attractive? No. You were BORN that way. Plain and simple. Now if that’s easy to grasp and understand then why can’t a gay man or woman be BORN that way? Why must it be a CHOICE for them? It’s not a choice people. It’s something they have no control over. Now I do think SOME (small percentage) of gay men and women choose to be that way after multiple failed heterosexual relationships, but a big majority of those end up realizing it’s not them or what they like and go back to being straight. I’ve personally seen that happen more than once in my life with friend of mine both male and female. Seeing that firsthand just strengthened my belief that being homosexual is not a choice.

I’m proud to be an Iowan. I’m proud to be part of a state that isn’t close minded and that knows that everyone deserves the same rights. It’s no different than when blacks were denied the same rights as white people. So why is this issue so hard to get over and accept? Black and White. Gay and Straight. The point is whether your heterosexual or homosexual there is one simple common factor that binds us all together. We are all human beings and deserve the same rights. Period.

Confessions of the Safe Guy: Part 2

broken_heart-1823So at this point you’re probably saying to yourself “This guy SUCKS at relationships” and you are right. I did. I was always settling, something you shouldn’t do. I always thought I’d never get anything better so take what I got and thank God you have someone period.

After my second go round with Mary I was single for a while (the longest time in my life to be honest). I met the next girlfriend that we’ll call “Cathy” sometime in 2003. She was great. She was sweet, caring, pretty. I was happy. Like almost all the past girlfriends she had a kid. But this time I got to experience a first. The classic “psycho ex” scenario. She was legally separated when I met her and just was waiting for the divorce to be finalized. I had no problem with that. She wasn’t “married’ technically. Things were fine at first. Then suddenly her daughter started to turn on me and was very hateful to me out of nowhere. She’d always been sweet and loving to me up until this point. We found out her dad had told her one time when he had her for the weekend that I was an evil man and that I was going to kill mommy and grandpa and grandma and kidnap her and take her away forever. Yep. Great guy right? So she tells him that my car was parked in front of the neighbors house (I never parked in her driveway if he drove by, which is something he did a lot). So then I started to park in her garage and that was fine for a while until her little girl tells her dad that if mommy’s car was in the driveway that meant I was over. So after all of this I had to stop coming to visit Cathy. Her ex-husband told her if he ever saw me he was going to kill me, chop me up into little pieces, and drop the pieces in the river. Such a sweet guy right? He fit the psycho label perfectly.

Needless to say things started to get sour between Cathy and I over the stress of her ex and we split. I think it was a mutual split too because we both knew as much as we cared about each other it wasn’t going to work right then. Last I heard she living in Illinois, with another kid, married to, get this….her ex-husband’s cousin! Yeah I was thinking the same thing!

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Men’s Top Five Turn-Offs

light-swtich

1. Wearing too much make up
I remember having a teacher in high school who would cake on make up like a mask. Her face was white with some sort of white plaster like material and every morning she must have awoke to the painstaking process of painting on her happy face for the day. It was impossible to see what her actual expression was because of the depth of her daily make-up ritual. Seriously, we’re all human and the odd blemish really isn’t that big a deal. Showing a bit of confidence with your imperfections is probably going to be more sexy than demonstrating your insecurities by hiding behind mountains of crèmes and cosmetics. Guys prefer light make-up or even no make-up. Too much make-up can spell a fussy, high maintenance girl. Particularly, if you’ve overdone the make-up for the occasion. Sure it’s nice to get dolled up at the right time, but keep it simple on the casual dates.

2. Making degrading generalizations
Men can’t stand it when you put them into a box and define their behaviour with some “all men are cheaters/liars/bastards etc” line. Lets face it, generalizations are a grossly and inconsiderate way of talking about someone. It strips them of their individual character and boxes them into this unrealistic stereotype. Most of us hate to be generalized. Many women would grow red with anger at being typecast as belonging in the kitchen with some babies at the apron strings. Men will take offense if you assign them to a stereotypical generalization. Steer clear of sweeping statements as it makes you look like an ignorant bigot.

3. Talking about your ex
Guys don’t want to here about your past heart throbs as much as you don’t want to her about all the past girls he’s banged. The more you gush about your past relationships the more it becomes clear that you are not completely over your past flames and would hook back up with your ex in a second. Equally, bitching about your past lovers is also a turn off. The best policy is to recognize that what happened in the past stays in the past. Sure ex’s are bound to come up in the conversation at some stage and you might find yourself discussing past relationships. The key is too not make it the topic of ever discussion. Even more of a turn off is to compare your current lover with an ex. An ex is history, keep it that way.

4. Armpit hair
So hair can be a touchy subject. Personally, I don’t dig it and according to the survey results a vast number of men rate it as a top turn off. I know its natural, yada yada yada… but so is farting yet I think most people would be repulsed by the idea of someone dropping some ass on a crowded bus. Armpit hair is one of those redundant throwbacks from the primitive days. There’s no great need for it so what the harm in removing it.

5. Extreme drunkenness
There’s tipsy, giggly, drunk, staggering, vomiting and then there is extreme drunkenness. Alcohol can make and break first impressions. A couple drinks are a good way of lubricating the conversation with someone you are just getting to know. Miscalculate the number of drinks and your sex appeal will be heading to all new lows. I’ve heard guys whine about how horrible a drunk girl can be. “A drunk guy is bad, but a drunk girl is ten times worse.” I think the stakes are evenly placed anyone who gets ridiculously drunk is highly unattractive. When you get to the point of vomiting, having your friends hoist you from bars/taxis/sidewalks/home and your make-up is smooshed across your face, it’s a fair bet that you won’t be picking up anything worthwhile. By all means have a raucous time and drink up but be aware of your limits.

Five Ways to Survive Being the Safe Guy

coneSo you’re the safe guy. The guy girls turn to when their “bad boys” turn out to be real pricks. Once a woman’s comfort level changes and she realizes that her “bad boy” isn’t what she thought he was she wants to leave and come to the safe guy. Being the safe guy isn’t a bad thing though.

Here are 5 ways that you can be the safe guy but not get walked all over and used.

1. Don’t Kiss Her Butt – She already knows you’re sweet,nice, and caring. That’s why you’re the “safe guy” remember? Be a gentleman, but there’s no need to coddle her and bend to her every whim.

2. Be Nice But Not TOO Nice – Maybe you are too nice.  Not all safe guys are perfect gentleman.  The safe guy takes care of himself and his woman. There’s a difference between being nice and over doing it. Being too nice can sometimes cause you to get used and then dropped when something else comes along.

3. Don’t Assume All Women Are The Same – Contrary to popular belief not all “hot” women are two fries short of a happy meal. Just because she’s “hot” doesn’t mean she can’t hold an intellectual conversation. In the same regard don’t assume all “normal” women are the smart ones. It’s truly a mixed bag.

4. Don’t Get A Big Head –Don’t take the position that you’re the best thing since sliced bread.  You’re not.  You’re a catch and all you need is the chance to prove it.

5. Don’t Settle –This one is an important one. Too many times safe guys settle and take what they can get. This usually ends up in break ups or divorces. Don’t think you’re only going to find one woman who likes/loves you. Never just give up and settle.

Thanks to Mike over at unpaidentertainer.com for contributing to this post.

Confessions of the Safe Guy: Part 1

NOTE: This is not meant as an advice post or anything. Rather it’s a look into my miserable and pathetic failed relationships. While I’d love to find humor in them that’s not easy to do so it may come off as dry but it’s just me telling ya my back story. More so that you’ll know where I’m coming from down the road in future posts I may write about relationships, love, etc. And yes I’m a recently divorced but I’m not bitter over it believe it or not. It was a long time coming and glad that’s it’s done and over. Now with that out of the way enjoy.

So I was wanting to write this whole series on relationships and how to have successful ones, etc. but I’ve decided to just write a history of my past failed ones and then maybe touch on the things I could have done differently or stuff I just had no control over. I hope you enjoy these and that you’ll come back to read the rest of my story.

Relationships are definitely a task….one that I’ve taken on a few times in the last 10 years since I started really dating. You see I wasn’t much of a “social” person in high school. I stuck to my computer and learned the stuff I knew would make me good money later in life. Therefore I never really “dated” anyone until I got into college. Now for the sake of privacy no real names will be used in any of these posts so those of you reading that know me may know who I’m really talking about but this is a way to cover my butt.

dating_internetMy first girlfriend came when I was 19. I had just started college a few months earlier. I met this great girl named “Terri” online that lived in Montana. Now I can’t even remember nowadays where I met her online just that I met her online. We talked for months and months and she came down to visit me a few times. Now those of you unfamiliar with “dating” someone online you consider yourself dating them even if you’ve never met them. Go watch Napoleon Dynamite you’ll understand when you see his brother. A few more months pass and she tells me she’s moving to Georgia and wanted to stop and see me in Chicago. So anyways she comes and stays at my apartment. She ended up staying I think for a month maybe two? The bonus that I never mentioned? She had a kid. Two actually. She had one the other was with the dad in Georgia. So began my journey into the world of dating women with kids. She moved down to Georgia after she left my place and came to see me a few times. We eventually lost touch and I haven’t spoken or talked to her period in over 10 years or more. Always wondered what came of her. Last time I spoke to her she was getting back with her kid’s father and that was the last I heard.

So can anyone point out my first mistake? Was it dating someone all the way in Montana while I lived in Illinois? Was it dating someone who had kids? What was my mistake? In my eyes my mistake was more than ONE thing. It was A) dating someone far away B) letting her stay with me that long. Yeah that was a big mistake.

So we’ve gotten past the first girlfriend and failed relationship. I never ended it. Now that I think about it she did kind of end things via email. Yeah I know lame right?  So my first “relationship” was under my belt. Time to move on to the next one.

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Series Post Coming

So I’ve been inspired by the 31DBBB (31  Days to Build a Better Blog) Challenge to write a post series. All about the same subject. I’ve chosen Relationships as my first series topic. Figured I’ve been through enough failed ones I can give plenty of advice on what NOT to do at least. 🙂 Maybe in turn that will help someone avoid a failed relationship. Who knows. Anyways keep it tuned here for the series.

I’ll try and get the first one out Sunday evening and then will post the next post in the series a day or two later. I’m not sure how long of a series it will be. I’m thinking 2 or 3 parts most likely. Depends on what my brain spits out. If I have enough material it could be longer. I’m really looking forward to this as it’s a first for me.

Life Story

So I was talking with Nikki this morning and she said I should write a book. About what though? She suggested a love story but I just don’t think I can write that kind of stuff. I’ve always had this idea in the back if my head to write a biography on my first 30 years of life but it’s a fiction book. I borrow stuff that happened to me but embelish it and make it more colorful. Like what that guy did with A Million Little Pieces. cat_bookOf course he sold his book on the premise it was a true story but it was discovered later he made most of it up.

I haven’t had THAT interesting of a life but my college life would easily provide some ionteresting content that’s for sure. Man if I was blogging back then the posts I’d of had HAHA! So I guess my first question to my readers out there of TDH is would you read a book like this? Any thoughts, ideas? I’ve just been thinking about it more and more lately due to me getting back into writing on here. It’s got my creative juices flowing. Of course it’s gonna take alot of research first because I don’t know the first thing about putting together a book (stuff like getting a publisher, etc.) so first thing is I need to go find out how all of that works.

So again I ask you all to leave your comments and tell me if a book like this would interest you? A story based on true events kind of book? Let me know.  I look forward to what you all have to say about this. Could help me decide whether or not to move forward with the idea.

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