Sunday, October 27, 2013

names we're given: beloved

Fall torches the hills 
orange and gold
speed shakes up through my feet
creation shouts 
with the voice of glory

Curled up in the back seat, speeding home from my cousin's wedding, nose pressed against the glass drinking in the beauty.  "Holy Baptism and Contemporary Theology" by Herbert Vorgrimler, due for the class I didn't actually want to get back in time for, lay open on my lap, and I'm nerding out scrawling poems in the margins of my religious studies readings. 

For some reason, I really love this moment. I think I'm embracing the fact that I'm that nerd girl, scribbling fragmented sentences left over from the poems that occasionally hit me in the margins of my theology readings, teary eyed because God is just that beautiful. Also because I love roadtrips and speed and being with people I love, the coffee cup in my hand and the sweater cozy as I curled up. 

But the thing I truly love about that moment is that fact that I am learning to think of myself as beloved. I have struggled so much with my self-understanding, with how I identified at the core of who I am. And it is a beautiful miracle and I want to sing when I see what God has done, the change he's making in my heart. For so long the names I identified as were inadequate, flawed, unlovable, these whispers of hate and fear that I listened to over God's life shout of love. And I finally just begged him, around two years ago, to fight for my heart. 

And he did. And slowly and surely I have come to hear, see and touch his love, poured out in sunlight on water, in coffee cups and conversations with people who know my soul, in their love and their words of grace speaking God's great grace into my hungry heart, in fall leaves blazing scarlet and 730 graces counted, the mundane miraculous gifts that scream his love. And counting and hunting for these instances of his love has opened my eyes, and I count and count and how could all this love be for me? And how can I deny or talk down the power of this love? 

This love is redefining me. And I love that moment, the nerd girl curled up scribbling poetry, because her heart was singing with the love of God. Because this miracle where I'm not listening to the lies anymore, and I can finally hear behind all the grace and beauty God's voice, calling me, naming me, defining me.  Beloved. 

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Daily bread

Sometimes I wish there was a way to store joy, so I could hide away the smell of fall leaves, wind in my hair rushing through the countryside, dancing in my kitchen, the feeling of being known and loved anyway, save all this abundance of joy for days when it's harder to find. I'm home again, for a brief stint of grace-filled, grace abundant days and it's too short. And I'm back to school tomorrow, which I love but which wears me down with busy-ness, with too little room in my calendar and too much caring, too many causes. But the thing about this semester, which is somehow the hardest and the best I've had, is that I'm slowly learning the meaning of daily bread, that grace is for today, enough for today and not tomorrow.
I keep chanting "give us today our daily bread." And that bread is the daily grace that gets me through, the long list of everyday kindnesses showered on me, the pages and pages of numbered gifts in my gratitude journal, the fact that I fall into bed exhausted but fulfilled each night. Daily bread, Jesus' reminder of God's faithfulness in the desert wandering. Bread from heaven every morning, and Friday's enough for two, gathering for Sabbath. But most days we're forbidden to gather double, and I don't think that's because God likes rules, but because that is how grace works. Enough for today, and not tomorrow.
And worry is wormy manna, the sour taste of fear, hands clutching for control. When I try to gather for tomorrow, store up joys in fear of dry seasons I know will come, they turn wormy in my hands and I clutch at memories and compare the now to the past, which is always rosier in remembering. I cannot taste tomorrow's grace because it is today. 
And this is the character of God, and this is learning trust. I'll number my overflowing list of graces tonight, and without fail there will be more tomorrow morning, enough to get me through. And more than just through, enough to give me joy. Because that is God and God is good. I'll taste tonight's graces, full to bursting with joy (literally full to bursting with home-cooked goodness) and know that tomorrow I will taste the goodness of the Lord again. 

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

seeing me

Thinking about the days when my self image was at its very worst, and the long redemptive road to now, where it's day by day but overall good, I realized something important, about something important I'd had to learn.
Convoluted, I know. I'll break it down, 'cause I like over-analyzing things.
The thing I had to learn was to step back from focusing on flaws, and smile at my reflection instead.
This simple step was incredibly hard. but deeply profound.
And the other day I realized another layer of why it works, why it was so helpful.
In my dark days, I could never see any prettiness in me. I could vaguely see that other people saw it-beauty-in me, and so subconsciously there was this bit of hope, that maybe it was there. But I didn't see it.
And I had to slowly learn to change the way I looked at myself. Metaphorically and spiritually, definitely. But, as I already noted, a huge part of that was changing the way I actually physically looked at myself.
Other people looking at me saw prettiness, some something attractive, either on just a physical level but probably also on an emotional/spiritual level, my real me-ness that makes anybody want to talk to me for more than 5 minutes, be my friend, what have you. But I couldn't see it, and what was with that?
When I looked into the mirror, I saw a person who looked out with gleeful criticism, jumping on every flaw, every pimple, anything and everything that could ever be construed as a flaw. I looked at a person who looked out with disappointment and self-loathing.
But how did I look to someone else? They saw prettiness, and no wonder, because they saw someone who laughed a lot, and smiles at people even more, who gets really passionate and excited about important things, who tries, to the best of her small ability, to look out at everyone (almost) with grace in her eyes. Grace to know you, like you, give you the benefit of the doubt and focus on the good in you.
So I think people thought I was "pretty" because 1) I am actually fairly pretty in just an arbitrary-scale way (the scale is dumb and I reject it wholesale, but that's another post) and 2) I looked at them with grace and liking.
If I'd looked at them the way I looked at me, they too would have soon become convinced that I was highly unattractive, in fact a disgusting person. Because I would have been all up in their face, literally examining them critically from 2 inches away, crowing maliciously over every flaw they had, and a few extra I could make up and convince them they had. I would have stared at them with condemnation, and they would have hated me with a self-protective rage to defend from the inadequacy I made them feel.  Insecurity giving rise to dislike and their dislike translating into the belief that I was physically ugly because they felt ugly emotions around me. Because our emotions are so entwined with how we perceive people, the way they make us feel.
And aside from an arbitrary out there "scale" defining prettiness, I think this is why people could see "prettiness," beauty in me when I couldn't. I'm certainly not perfect, but overall I like people, I love the image of God in them, I try to extend grace. It's this strange circular thing, seeing beauty in others and them responding to the beauty in you, the opposite of the vicious cycle of seeing ugly-creating ugly.
And I had to break that cycle, take a physical, tangible step back, and smile my warmest, smile with joy and love behind it, laughter and grace extended. So that I saw in the mirror not a girl who extended grace to (almost) everyone, but everyone.
Including me.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Sabbath Semester: Day 1-The Rules of the Game and Shabbat Shalom

Today is the very first day of my Sabbath Semester Challenge. I slept in late, Saga sat over breakfast and had a true heart-to-heart with dear friends, two old and one brand new made over coffee five minutes before.
I'm doing this thing that I'm calling Sabbath Semester, where I do no academic work from Friday to Saturday night, because I'm not happy with how I have been living in my college world thus far. I have an incredible life, I have two jobs I love, and so many dear-heart friends, but still, it's been two years of the college world and I've still never felt like things were quite right. It's like the wholest, realest me only fully comes out when I am home, and to an extent I've realized that will probably always be true, and it's ok. But I still want to be living whole-hearted, centered from who I am, wherever I am.
And this crazy thing I am calling Sabbath Semester just might be the key to that whole life I want.
Sabbath is something I grew up on, a tradition my quirky Evangelical Christian family took up when we realized Sunday is never really a day of rest for Pastor's families, and when we remembered, some fifteen odd years ago, that our goal as Christians is to be as much like Jesus as possible, and he was Jewish. So we started doing a lot of Jewish things, and found an incredible amount of blessing in the Old Testament Commandments we mostly forget about as Christians.
I started out, some fifteen years ago, a little girl with Hebrew words guttural and strange in the back of my throat. And then Sabbath became something that defined my family and defined me. Sabbath is melting candles and long conversations, family time with Handel's Messiah in the background, trying to eliminate distractions of work and business and focus on us, together, and the God we love.
Despite how much Sabbath shaped me, I didn't really consider observing Sabbath when I came to school. There was just so MUCH to do. It was impractical and impracticable in this new world of stress and deadlines and proving myself, and I didn't truly consider it.
But I'm reconsidering, because in a world of deadlines and always overextending myself so I am not quite the self I want to be, it is just what I need. Because Shabbat Shalom is not just a phrase, it is everything that Sabbath is. Shalom, the Hebrew greeting meaning peace, is not just peace; it is health, harmony, rest, soundness and wholeness. It is the whole life, soul-centered living flowing out of who I am, who God is. I live harried, I live hurried and fast, and Shabbat Shalom, slowing, is what I need.
So here are the rules.
1) I will do no academic work from Friday night after dinner to Saturday night after dinner.
I was really worried about this, frantic voice in my head asking how I would get everything done. But honestly, I've practically been observing Sabbath already, vowing to get work done tomorrow on Friday but so exhausted by Saturday that I'd lay in bed and pinterest all day instead. But with it came guilt at not getting anything done, because I was never giving myself permission to just rest. Sabbath is permission from God to just rest. To just relax and trust he'll give me the strength and skill to honor him with my days and in my commitments, but for now just to be a human and enjoy being alive.
2) I will use this time of rest to focus on God and people, which Sabbath is all about.
This means it's not just permission to lay in bed and pinterest every Saturday. I want to be intentional. Sabbath days I want to journal, read my Bible, pray and take long walks and think and pray more. Do some yoga, drink some tea, and then connect connect connect with people. I want to be intentional to make plans with people, share Sabbath as much as I can. Last night I invaded my friend Bev's townhouse, and we broke challah bread I'd brought from home, drank apple juice as a wine replacement, and and I stumbled through the Hebrew blessings without my family's voices with me. My lovely roommate came, and we talked long and sleepy and it was lovely.
3) I can do reading homework on Saturdays, if I am bored and I enjoy the readings (aka my African history readings). Basically, before I do anything on Sabbath, I need to ask "Does this activity give me life, or steal my joy?" That sounds dramatic, but math homework? Not every allowed to be part of Sabbath, because it steals my soul.
4) It's allowed to be flexible. I can re-arrange the days, rest on Sunday, etc, whatever, even do a little bit of work  if I talk with God and he's cool with it before hand. Sabbath Semester is not about legalism, because obedience to God is not ever about legalism, it's about blessing. His commands are good: Eat good food, talk long with your family and people you love, talk to me and relax. Experience my Shalom peace. Wholeness, rest, soul connection.

Start living it.

Friday, August 16, 2013


Dear World. Here is a recipe for happiness. You're welcome.

3/4 cup water, warm
3 tablespoons butter, melted
3 eggs, whipped
1/3 to 1/2 cup sugar, depending on how sweet you like it
1 tsp salt
4 cups flour
1 tablespoon yeast

If you have a bread machine, dump all these ingredients in the mixer (put the yeast in a hollowed out hole in the flour so it doesn't get wet if you want to used timed-start), put on the dough cycle, and let it all mix and rise. Also skip this next section.

If you don't have a bread machine, mix warm water, yeast, and an additional tsp of sugar in a separate bowl to foam and rise. In large bowl or kitchen aid, mix butter, eggs, sugar, and salt. Slowly add in the flour, 1/2 at a time, alternating with the foamed yeast/water mixture. If using a kitchen aid, you can switch to the dough hook after adding the first two cups of flour. Mix almost all of the last cup of flour in, but reserve some (probably about 1/3 cup or 1/4, I'm actually not sure because I never make less than a triple batch of dough when making it by hand) to flour your counter with and kneed in by hand. Kneed in that last but of flour until the dough has a smooth, elastic feel. Set in greased bowl and cover with a dish cloth, to rise until doubled.

Now both our bread machine/by hand peeps join up again. When it's risen, kneed on a floured surface for a few minutes to kneed out air hole pockets. Divide in half and cut them into either 3 or 4 strands, depending on the braid you're using (or more strands, if you wanna get really fancy) Let the pieces set for five minutes, then roll them into long "snakes" and braid. Put both loaves on a greased cookie sheet, and let rise till doubled.  Brush with 1 egg yolk mixed with about 1 tablespoon of water (pastry brushes are your friend, paint brushes not so much) to make a lovely shiny glaze. Bake at 375 for 8 minutes, cover loosely with foil, and bake for another 8 minutes.

Let cool on baking racks or a wooden serving plate (if you leave it on the baking sheet too long the bottom gets gummy, it's gross), for about 10 minutes or so, but you should probably eat it warm. Gwen would tell you that it's better still-fresh-but-not-warm, but she would be wrong. Tear off large chunks,* lather in butter, and enjoy!

*This step is highly important. Whatever you do, do NOT cut challah. 1) it tastes better torn (it's a scientific fact, practically. Anyone with halfway decent taste buds agrees) 2) Cutting it goes against the Jewish tradition, based on prophecy that swords will be turned into plowshares (Isaiah 2:4) 3) IT'S SACRILEGE. It just goes against all the sacred rules of challah, ok?

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Thomas, called Didymus

Better known as doubting Thomas, he's gone down in history with infamy, three years of following Jesus, walking covered in his dust so close behind, all erased by a moment of doubt. But I wonder if his sin is not the one we think it is. Doubting Thomas, cold, analytic, demanding proof, the scars and living skin to touch before he could believe. The ultimate skeptic.
But what if that was not his sin?
Three years. His Savior, friend, the man he'd left everything to follow, the man who gave meaning to his life, ripped away.
How often, when grieving, is cold rationality our first recourse? If we do run to rationality, isn't it a kind of refugee? Fleeing to unfeeling scientific sterility of emotion to numb pain, to hide from further hurt?
Because hope always, always, is a risk. To long for anything is to open oneself to disappointment--and the deeper and more desperate the hope the more horrific the hurt.
I doubt that Thomas was a doubter--that was not his sin. He was a man broken and terrified. Terrified to believe the joy in the other disciples' eyes. After believing Jesus was Messiah, son of God, God himself made man, and then the cross, what was Thomas to believe but that God was dead? And that left nothing but darkness, a world of chaos. Hope offered an escape from that prison camp world, but to hope only to have the door slammed again in his face, surely what would kill him.
I have a sin of fear. Maybe that was his sin.
But is it any wonder he smothered hope? The only thing left that could hurt him worse than he'd already been wounded?
Who are we to cast stones? What miracles do we miss because we will not open our hearts to the hurt that hope risks? We dream small, puny dreams, live small, puny lives because the bigger the dream the greater the risk and too often we are cowards. Hoping hurts. So we smother it to shield ourselves.
What was it Jesus said to Thomas when he'd touched his scars? Because you have seen me, you believe; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.
Isn't that us? We have a chance to be those who have not seen, but believe. In a world that can still seem like a prison camp, we have a chance to hope for more, and in hoping, fight to create. It's not as much a matter of overcoming intellectual skepticism as emotional terror--fear we'll be hurt, fear we'll fight for nothing. We are cowards afraid to believe in redemption, but only by believing do we experience it.
We need to hold on hope, risk the hurt it taunts, and believe in the redemption that is in the hands of the scarred Savior we cannot see.
I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is like the working of his mighty strength, which he exerted in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms. -Ephesians 1:18-20 

Monday, June 3, 2013

taking boys out of the equation

We need to take boys out of the equation, the discourse of modesty and sexual purity directed at girls in the church. The books, the survey's of teen guys about what was attractive or "tempting" to them, the lectures and seminars, blog posts and even the messages teen girls sent each other, peer-to-peer, the "modest is hottest" culture, they all hinted at it: the objective of being modest was to guard the purity of our brothers in Christ. Oh, and to honor God.
The whole framing of the modesty issue left me feeling that way--that guys, not God, were the focus. Too much of the conversation was dominated by protecting our  brothers' purity, making their battle with lust easier and not being a "stumbling block." The issues this spawns are numerous,  not the least being the fact that it sexually objectifies the female body as surely as the hyper-sexualized "wordly" attitudes; can lead to eating disorders and self harm, entirely ignores the fact that women can also lust (shocker) and, taken to the extreme, burdens women with the weight of male responsibility, holding women and their bodies accountable for the thought life of men.
In my life, I was blessed to have men who didn't surrender their accountability and foist it on me, but rather approached lust as a sin issue/spiritual battle that I could be instrumental in making easier for them. I'm grateful for this, and beyond the "Christianese" I genuinely cared about the young men in my life, and understanding each other as a soul in love with God made them my brothers in a very deep, real sense. Sacrificing some cute outfits to help them focus on God and not my boobs during youth group was something I could cheerfully do. In the years since, I've heard one of my closest guy friends from high school thank the girls in our circle of friends for how we dressed, and said that it was a blessing in his life. He thanked us for learning about God and life and girls from our friendships, and it was beautiful to hear.
It was especially life-giving to hear because there was frustration and hurt in my heart, remnants of the modesty-culture and discourse. Being a Youngmann girl, I finished developing at the age of 12, which meant I'd been on the frustrating search to "dress modestly" from a very young age. Frustrations range from: finding a bathing suit that is a) not a bikini, and b) not disgusting, I found-this-in-my-grandma's-closet-esque, to internalizing the "modest is hottest" message so that modesty, ironically, became just another way to attract guys, to only be disillusioned, frustrated and fed-up when the "righteous" young men we were making all these sacrifices for didn't seem to notice, and instead of appreciating our virtue chased after all the bikini-clad girls. (note: this is not meant to be shaming for people who make other clothing choices, this was the frustration of a 12 year old too early burdened with the mixed messages of a confusing conservative idealogy).
By the age of 13, before I could even articulate it, I was frustrated and fed-up with the fact that modesty culture casts women as temptresses and men as animals. This all came to a head one day when  I had to reject yet another adorable outfit because the skirt passed the arm test (length longer than the tips of your fingers) but not by enough to be truly modest. I proceeded to have a hissy-fit.
I started throwing the adorable too-short skirt repeatedly at the ground, with all the violence I could muster. "I am SICK of it! I'll never get to wear these AWESOME outfits that I look AWESOME in, and no one will ever know how AWESOME I can look because teen guys are gross, lusting animals!"
You get the picture.
My central conclusion was, and is, that guys aren't worth it. Not worth the bother, the headache, the lie that a woman's body is sinful, should be hidden...the heartache.
But that day as a frustrated girl, barely a teen, throwing a fit, I realized what has defined my understanding of modestly ever since: It wasn't about guys or for guys, and it never had been.
I asked myself, who are you doing this for? The answer was, God, always.
Modesty is something I choose, something I want to always remain committed to because God has called me to it and I want to obey. Because it is my spiritual, intimate act of worship to the only guy who is worth it, Jesus. Because the Bible urges "brothers and sisters, in view of God's mercy, offer your bodies as a living sacrifice to God--this is your true and proper worship." (NIV, 2009) Romans 12:1. It is between me and God. It is worship, it is an expression of my spiritual, independent choice, it is an act of love for the God I love. It builds spiritual muscles as I submit my day-to-day choices to God, as I develop discernment, and if my clothing choice is right between my spirit and the Holy Spirit, then I have done my duty and what goes on in someone else's mind is simply not my issue.
I had to take boys out of the equation for modesty to be something other than a thankless, guilt-ridden burden. If men are blessed by modesty, that is wonderful and I am glad, but that is a side effect, a perk to personally honoring God, not the end goal. It's a perk that he planned, I am sure, but the goal is God, not the mental state of our brothers in Christ, however much we love them. Modesty is an act of worship, and the object of worship in the modesty discourse in the Christian community needs to be reinstated as God. Otherwise we end up worshiping failed human beings, men and boys whose minds we can never control, and who we should not uplift as idols or denigrate as animals.We end with broken, burdened women and shame-filled hearts for beauty that should be, is, a joy.
Let's worship the one who is worthy.

Monday, May 13, 2013

why we should actually care what other people think about us (as long as they are halfway decent human beings)

       In high school I used to think I was dumb. I suck at math, and so to my hyper-achieving, hyper-critical self, that meant I was dumb. Granted, I am really quite horrific at math (and I can be a bit of an airhead) but I am clearly not dumb. My mom tried to tell me this over and over again, but I never believed her (or my standardized test scores, which were fine). Being homeschooled didn't help. I had no one to compare myself to, except the imaginary perfect girl in my head, and it didn't count that my mom thought I was smart, she's my mom and thinking I am cool is her job. Her voice didn't count.
        So I went around thinking I was dumb and wallowing in a lot of self hate.
This issue extended to other areas as well.  I always found a reason to reject other people's good opinion of me and replace it with my superior self-knowledge and self hate. Either they didn't know me well enough to judge, like They only think I am smart (or kind, or selfless, or worthwhile) because they don't know me well enough to know otherwise, or they knew me too well. They only think I am kind, or smart, or whatever, because they're my close friend-relative-drama-director-who's-known-me-for years etc, and they have to. My drama director was a close friend of the family, and he would have torn his hair out trying to affirm my acting abilities if he had had hair. It wasn't until my senior year, when Mr. Keena was the assistant director of my last show, that I finally got it through my head that I was a pretty decent, actually really good, actress. He basically danced in his seat every time I came on stage. Literally.
        One time I had a particularly melodramatic and disdainful upturned nose motion, and he skipped and shook his arms with glee at what a snobby bitch this mild pastor's daughter could be when she was acting. I acted the entire show with the corner of my eye drinking in Mr. Keena's unassumed delight in my acting. His voice counted. He had double majored in theater, and had performed in off-Broadway musicals. Basically he had the credentials to give his favorable opinion weight, without the long acquaintance with me to negate it.
        The same thing happened with my I'm dumb attitude when I came to college. All my smartest professors thought I was smart. It was amazingly affirming. They had the PhDs and decades of grading papers to back their opinions up, and they weren't obligated to like me. I couldn't argue with their PhDs, or my grade average at the end of my first insanely stressed out semester. I was smart. It was a beautiful moment of dawning comprehension.
        All of this is to say: So often positive-self image campaigns or slogans are all about not caring what other people think of us. And I totally support rejecting our society's messed up standards and the opinions of shallow, judgmental people.
       But all my life I was surrounded by beautiful, phenomenal, caring, intelligent people who all thought I was phenomenal, caring, intelligent and beautiful. And I was like "yeah no." And there is a certain arrogance to thinking that our own negative self-concept outweighs the positive opinion of the people who care about us most. If I really think that my mom is smart, and that my drama director knows his job, I should listen when they tell me am brilliant and bold and worthwhile. If they are so smart and brilliant, surely their opinions count? Surely they have a voice that matters, and we should let it in.
       And it was a long process, but I am learning not to dismiss the compliments and affirmation people give me out of hand. I started by letting myself just consider the possibility that they were right, and it was such a beautiful possibility I had trouble breathing. But their voice does matter, and listening to it, and not the perfectionist in my head, gets easier.
       I think to a certain degree we are all hungering for an outside voice with weight to tell us that we are beautiful, smart, worthwhile, whole. And I think to a lesser degree, we can all help each other in that hunger, be voices that speak love and caring and sheer delight in each other's existence.
       Let's echo the voice with great weight, great gravitas, which insists on being heard.

God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. 

Thursday, March 28, 2013

To: Anna, From: Luke

  • 1 free snuggle talk
  • 1 free storei (with little arrows indicating that the "i" and "e" should be reversed) 
  • 1 free 2 hour long talk about God
  • 10 free hugs
  • 1 free fun day together
  • 2 free sleepovers
My birthday present from my favorite ten year old little man. He's learned good gift giving from his Daddy-Boy, and months later I still have the letter full of coupons I can redeem at any point.
Which means I am off for a snuggle and story time with my Lukester.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Dear Assholes outside my window at 2:30 am, on a Wednesday Night

I am so sick of being so angry that I want to storm through Hennepin and out the front doors to write all your rude, obscene, drunk asses up, but knowing that I physically can't because that is dangerous. I am a woman and there are 6 of you, and it wouldn't be fair to wake up another guy RA just because I am pissed off. But yes, for your information (and I mean you specifically, tool in the yellow shirt and green hat, friend of the pimply green eyed guy with a dark ponytail who borrowed my clipboard when he was getting signatures to run for Student something or other-yeah, we know how to elect em, Siena) I was the one who called public safety on you, and who watched in disgust as he issued a warning and left-and I did call Public Safety back to clarify that you shouted "Fuck you" to a resident's window at least 5 times in a row. When the Public Safety officer came back awhile later with back up, I felt better. I wasn't the only one who didn't want to take you on alone. But I am still so sick of the fact that losers like you have the power to make me scared.
I am so sick of the fact that when it's 2:30 in the morning, and your screamed obscenities wake me up, that it takes me awhile to come to enough to call Public Safety. I am so sick of the fact that I never once yelled at you from my window to shut up-because if, by some miracle, the girls in the rooms around me haven't been woken up by you, they would be by me. I have a pair of lungs and once, just once, I'd like to let you hear it.
I am so sick of doing the right "active bystander" thing and just calling Public Safety, "delegating" responsibility and muttering the 3 D's. (Distract, delegate, and another I'd remember if it weren't 2:30am).
I am still so angry, with leftover stale, thwarted anger from months ago, that you, or someone like you, shouted at a girl's window "Shaved or not, I want your pussy." And I called public safety to say there were drunk yelling guys outside my dorm, when what I should have said was I just witnessed an incident of sexual harassment.
Because that it what it is.
And I wish I had clarified for Public Safety that you shouting "Fuck you" at repeated intervals while your drunk buddies giggles was also sexual aggressive and harassing language, and that I, and my residents, have a legal right under New York State law to an education environment free from harassing language such as that.
But it's 2:30 in the morning, and I think of these things later, lying here knowing I can't confront this alone.
So this is me, hollering back and praying there are enough sleepy, pissed off people out there that I don't have to confront this alone. Let's start calling it like it is Siena. Enough is enough.