Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Hear no evil

Not listeningWow, you guys are the best. You know what really helped me, other than a good night’s sleep? It was hearing that several others are also on a short fuse. Somehow knowing that I wasn’t alone in my frustration and irritation eased the distress. I don’t want anyone else to feel the way I did yesterday, but I appreciate those of you who sympathized and said you were kind of feeling the same thing. Like I always say, I get by with a little help from my friends. I think someone might have said that before me, but I’m not sure who. As far as homilies go, though, you can’t beat it with a drumstick! [wink]

I was in a much better frame of mind today, and even when something did grate on my nerves, it wasn’t quite on the last one. I was able to just laugh about it and shake it off. In my previous entry, I mentioned something about giving valid advice to people and having them ignore it. That’s always bugged me. If you’re going to ask me a question, and I give you the answer you didn’t want and you choose to ignore it, why did you waste my time by asking me the question? If that’s what you’re going to do, don’t bother asking me and wasting both your time and mine, okay?

I get very frustrated when people don’t listen to me, and especially frustrated when it’s something that I happen to know quite a bit about. It happens to all of us, I know, but it doesn’t make it any more tolerable for me.

Today I was talking to someone on the phone, and the subject of autism came up. This person has a relative in another state who happens to have a kid diagnosed with autism. This person said, “And the mother thinks—and I agree with her—that those inoculations had something to do with it.” *ding ding ding ding* Many of you know that that is one of my hot-button issues, if not THE hot-button issue for me. I said, “I completely disagree. They have shown over and over that there is no link between vaccines and autism.” This person said, “But they didn’t see any signs of it until after the shots.” I said, “That’s often because the signs of autism show up and can be diagnosed around that time. There isn’t a connection between vaccines and autism. This is kind of my thing.” The response?


WhateverThat’s right. When talking with someone who actually knows a bit about the subject and has read extensively about it, they ignored my comments by saying, “Whatever.” I am not an epidemiologist, and I don’t pretend to know all the details of vaccines; I don’t know the schedule of vaccines, and I don’t really know what all is recommended; my expertise was in trying to grow or identify the infectious diseases that were present. But most of us in the lab followed trends in diseases, and tracked the statistics released in the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, and I also checked Indiana’s numbers. Not to mention reading up on trends around the world and tracking where outbreaks occurred, and why. So when I talk about vaccines, I’m not talking out of my ass.

I guess I can chalk it up to people not wanting to have their ideas challenged. I guess it’s easier to listen to a young mother say that she firmly believes that her child’s autism is due to vaccinations than have a microbiologist explain that it is faulty science and has no basis in reality and came about because an unethical physician conducted bad research on a whopping TWELVE kids. No matter that the physician’s paper was yanked from the journal in which it was published, the research was denounced, and the doctor’s medical license was stripped. No matter that over twenty subsequent studies, involving thousands of children, showed absolutely no correlation. It’s easier to listen to junk science and accept it than to try to have someone who actually understands the issue and has read plenty about it explain it in detail. It’s easier to dismiss what I say than to make an effort to listen to me and maybe learn something about it.

Is it any wonder that I don’t get closer to such people? Is it any wonder that I’m feeling more than a little misanthropic lately? Is it any wonder I’m sane at all? I think someone said that before me, but I’m not sure who. Maybe when Charon ferries me across to Hades, I’ll think of it. [wink]

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Last nerve grated

Last NerveI don’t know if it’s the heat and humidity, or just the political climate, but I have just about had it.

As I’ve read things online over the past couple of days, I realized that I was just really damn tired of debating. I’m tired of the discussions, I’m tired of trying to talk about it, and I’m tired of the whole dysfunctional stupid process.

Add to that a crappy stupid email I got this morning that was incredibly presumptuous and assumed some things about me without actually knowing me, a stupid and totally unnecessary diagnosis on a kid in the family who had no control over it, and a stupid horrible dream about being chased by zombies (at least I was able to outrun them), and I am what some might call ON EDGE.

Part of my morning routine is checking all my feeds and catching up on the latest political news and commentary. I had no stomach for it today. I put it off until the afternoon, and I still had no stomach for it. I put it off until the evening, and I finally just marked everything as read, because I was just so sick of all of it.

I have had it with people thinking that they know me and assuming that because I have opinions that differ from theirs, that means that I just haven’t thought about it enough. That my opinions on politics are simply the parroting of liberal pundits, and that I am somehow incapable of forming my own thoughts and opinions on matters. I’m tired of some people not listening to me when I give them valid advice. I am especially sick and tired of anyone who thinks that I haven’t really thought about my views on religion, and that I haven’t thoroughly pondered them over forty fucking years. Like I just woke up one day and said I wasn’t going to believe any of it. And I’m sick of anyone who thinks that they can judge me about not having children, without knowing my history or what has happened in my life.

This is about a negative entry as you’ll ever see from me, because I generally just go about my business and do my own thing. But I have my limits, and I have been pushed to them at the moment. (And for anyone who wonders, I am NOT on the rag. I suggest you not ask that.) I don’t whine...I get pissed. And woe unto those who push me on it.

For the next few days, I plan on just hunkering down and keeping to myself, reading and enjoying some peace and quiet outside. Like a wounded animal, I’m feeling all bitey, and it’s best to not reach out a hand to pat me on the head. I spent a wonderful afternoon with Shane and Matt on Monday, and we hung out in the pool and just talked and laughed and listened to music. I hope for another afternoon like that this week, and that will go a long way towards easing my mind and my achy psyche.