From the category archives:

imho is just a polite way to say I know you don’t give a hoot what I think but I’m going to say it anyway

Who here has an obsessive personality and voted “Most Likely to Grow Up Alex Forrest” in High School? ME! I just cannot let it go.

Here’s what I wrote last week about the epidemic of the phrase “That’s so gay!”…

Let’s start with the word “Gay”.

Let’s start with banning the usage of the word “gay” as a substitute for “stupid, dumb, ugly, undesirable, etc.” from your schools.

Since I wrote “That’s so Gay” is NOT so funny! This has nothing to do with sense of humor… last February, “That’s so gay” has been gaining popularity as just another common expression. I am hearing (and seeing on Facebook) this phrase more and more often, from children younger and younger who have no idea what “being gay” means. As the phrase takes on the facade of familiarity, moving into the realm of the vernacular, taking on the identity of an idiom (because what exactly does it even mean in this context?! Children or the immature adults only know to prevent this phrase from ever being used on them… but what exactly does it mean?!) it is becoming harder and harder to fight it off.

I am tired of hearing “That’s so gay.” I really am. There are so many words in English to choose from to denote your distaste for something. Get a thesaurus. Get a book of classic insults by Shakespeare. Wilde. Because when you are so concerned about being called “gay” that “That’s so gay” becomes a popular insult, you know, you sound like a Homophobe to me. And you know what they say about Homophobes… How about this, let’s give “That’s so Beck” a try.

Once again, this is the case of “I must have been under a rock” since ladies and gentlemen, there IS has been a champaign to stop this madness, to bring awareness to the harm done by such a “harmless” phrase.

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I was really excited initially, “OMG! There IS a movement right now so I can simply jump on the wagon without having to feel so frustrated, with my panties all tied up and nowhere to go!”

Upon further investigation, I realized that the campaign was launched in 2008 by the Ad Council to dissuade people from using “That’s so gay” when they mean “stupid”. In 2008, people. That’s like the last century, no?! And we are still dealing with the same shit, and it is getting worse and worse every day.

I have been staring at this Twitter counter for a while now.

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I don’t know what’s happening with this campaign, movement, PSA. Is it still in vogue? Was it ever? But I saw this, I thought my proposed replacement phrase THAT’S SO BECK! has legs!

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Let's be creative! That's so..... Bush? As in the plant bush, really. Scout's honor.

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That’s so…

What clever, witty, humorous sayings can you come up with as a comeback?

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Watch the PSA commercial with Wanda Sykes from 2008 for inspiration if you wish. It’s as per usual HILARIOUS. (Warning: Just don’t read the comments… Trust me.) As for effectiveness? Let’s just say it was done in 2008 and I don’t remember ever hearing about this, until now. Sorry I’m all Rah! Rah! one second, and then Debbie Downer the next.

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If you look at the ratings, the crazed fans (“regular Suzy homemakers” many of them) in the audience, the 4.5 million followers on Twitter, her No. 3 position on the Twitter ranking (behind Ashton Kutcher and Britney Spears *Yes, I know* BUT ahead of POTUS), you’d be convinced that Ellen DeGeneres has gone mainstream. For goodness sake, Ellen is a CoverGirl! She is able to mention her wife Portia de Rossi in the mundane way that spouses mention each other in their conversations with other people without raising any eyebrows.

Wanda Sykes has a show on Fox.

The primetime TV show “Modern Family” on ABC includes in its main characters a suburban couple with an adopted daughter who happen to be gay without any trace that would possibly remind you of Jack from Will and Grace.

If you put your blinder on (and force yourself to forget about Prop 8), you can tell yourself that, yes, gays and lesbians have been accepted as “one of us”. Or at the very least, homosexuality is now broadly accepted as yet another piece of fabric weaved into this complex, multi-faceted world that we live in.

You would be wrong.

First of all, as you are well aware of, there is a fight raging on in Washington over “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell”. I can’t do my frustration justice without simply asking you to watch my beloved Jon Stewart proposing a ban on Old People from serving in the Senate. Naturally “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” would apply also should this ban go through…

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The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c
A Few Gay Men & Women
www.thedailyshow.com
Daily Show Full Episodes Political Humor Health Care Reform

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Earlier we were outraged by what happened to Constance McMillan, the lesbian high school student in Itawamba, Mississippi who wanted to wear a tux and bring her girlfriend to the prom and was denied this request by the school board. At the same time we were amazed and impressed by this young woman’s poise, resolve and courage when she didn’t take the easy way out by simply backing down and instead took her case up with ACLU. Such a story naturally hit close to home for Ellen: She invited Constance to be on the show to tell her story and presented Constance with a scholarship of $30,000 (from an anonymous donor) at the end of the interview. Later when a federal judge ruled that the school board violated her rights by cancelling the prom (without ordering the district to hold the prom as planned), Ellen sent yet another strong message to Constance, and also to her viewers.

You’d thought such outrage would have taught the school district, the parents and the students involved to rethink their position and learn a lesson from this. But no…

Last Friday, Constance was sent to an effectively “fake” prom which was only attended by 5 other students. The principal and teachers were also there as chaperons. Two of these students were reportedly disabled. (One had to assume that they have also been directed to this “fake” prom). In the mean time, a privately-held party organized by parents was held in another location attended by, you guessed it, the other students. “The parents didn’t want Constance there, and they didn’t want to get sued.” Some reports said.

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The "Secret Prom" Constance McMillan was not invited to. She lucked out judging by the photo...

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You’d think that people would eventually wake up one morning and realized such cruelty is unbecoming of a human being and relent. But no…

The other students have been identifying themselves as victims because Constance ruined the prom and their memories of senior high school. As a normal teenager would do when they have an ax to grind against somebody, they started a Facebook page called “Constance quit yer cryin.(I just spent an hour reading some of the things being posted on that Facebook page. My jaws are still on the floor…)

All this is unbelievable isn’t it? Well, no worries. Because our fellow human beings never disappoint. What is even more unbelievable, more outrageous, more horrifying, and more saddening is the case of Phoebe Prince in South Hadley, MA, who killed herself in January after cyber and emotional bullying. The most un-fucking-believable part of this? Her tormentors went to her Facebook the day after she hung herself (and discovered by her 12-year-old sister!) and mocked her. Right there on the memorial page.

It’s been two months and every time when I think of her and this story, I cannot stop cursing and crying.

Finally on March 29, nine teenagers were indicted for their involvement in this case. I sure hope I will not hear about Facebook page set up by supporters of the Hadley 9 bemoaning how Phoebe Prince has ruined their lives.

What happened here?

The teachers have been blamed for Phoebe Prince’s death; the school district/board has been blamed for the prejudiced decision against Constance McMillan.

How about the parents?

What I am seeing is a severe case of Undeserved Sense of Entitlement and Lack of Accountability.

Teachers don’t teach you this at school. Nor should they be responsible for building characters and moral fortitude for the kids. It is the parents’ job, isn’t it?

Don’t get me wrong: I am not so smug as to assume that I will be able to understand my children when they turn teenagers. But as a parent, you have got to try as hard as you could. Now I know you did not try hard enough if you were organizing a private party just so you could exclude the gays and the disabled. The disabled? WHAK? Does the Bible say something against the disabled too?

Candace Gingrich-Jones on HuffPost put out a call for action:

“We can all learn a lot from Constance McMillan and how she has handled herself — when we see something that doesn’t seem right, it probably isn’t. And it is the responsibility of every one of us to take some kind of action on behalf of fairness. Whether you bring up bullying at the next PTA meeting, write a letter to the Itawamba County School District, or call out your friends or co-workers when they say ‘faggot’ or ‘that’s so gay,’ you are improving the climate for queer youth — and adults. Do something.”

DO SOMETHING.

Let’s tell our kids that “the buck stops here.” The buck has got to stop with them. Let’s tell them that we understand peer pressure and how hard it is to survive high school, but they have to be the one that speak up. If not to their peers, then to an adult. If malicious rumors are being circulated about someone, the least they have to do is to NOT continue the chain. Break the cycle of cruelty. Sometimes all it takes is one person to stand up or stay back or speak up.

LET’S DO SOMETHING.

Baby steps. All of us.

One Ellen DeGeneres is not enough.

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Let’s start with the word “Gay”.

Let’s start with banning the usage of the word “gay” as a substitute for “stupid, dumb, ugly, undesirable, etc.” from your schools.

Since I wrote “That’s so Gay” is NOT so funny! This has nothing to do with sense of humor… last February, “That’s so gay” has been gaining popularity as just another common expression. I am hearing (and seeing on Facebook) this phrase more and more often, from children younger and younger who have no idea what “being gay” means. As the phrase takes on the facade of familiarity, moving into the realm of the vernacular, taking on the identity of an idiom (because what exactly does it even mean in this context?! Children or the immature adults only know to prevent this phrase from ever being used on them… but what exactly does it mean?!) it is becoming harder and harder to fight it off.

I am tired of hearing “That’s so gay.” I really am. There are so many words in English to choose from to denote your distaste for something. Get a thesaurus. Get a book of classic insults by Shakespeare. Wilde. Because when you are so concerned about being called “gay” that “That’s so gay” becomes a popular insult, you know, you sound like a Homophobe to me. And you know what they say about Homophobes… How about this, let’s give “That’s so Beck” a try.

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p.s. Here’s my angry musing on the increasing popularity of the usage of “Gay” as an insult…

The increasing popularity of the usage of “Gay” as an insult is indicative of the underlying homophobic mentality permeating in our society, despite decades of working towards acceptance by the “mainstream”. This is, the way I read it, part of the backlash against the gains made by gays and lesbian. They have co-opted the word “queer” so that now it conveys pride in self-identification in some specific uses. It is then not too far off to see the co-opting of the word “Gay” as revenge by the not-so-enlightened amongst us: they are trying to turn the previously neutral and PC “label” (for lack of a better word) into a slur. “You took an insult word from us so that we can no longer hurt you with it. Guess what? We are going to turn how you have been identifying yourselves with into a insult equivalent of anything undesirable…”

Clever maneuver by the not-so-tolerant.

What does this say about how we really feel about those who are different from the “norm” deep down, behind the door, if we allow the use of this word on the playground and in the school hallways as part of the litany of insults that our kids can hurl at each other?

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And, like a bad infomercial on TV, THERE IS MORE!

The drama continues here on the Facebook page set up by the adults from Itawamba, Mississippi. It is easy to see where the kids have learned their prejudices and bigoted attitudes. I don’t want to sound naive to say that I am shocked by the ugliness found there. But despite all my cynicism, I am still shocked.

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Thanks to the straight (and stern) talks from you, I went to see a doctor today. Just a random doctor since I don’t really have a family doctor. My Ob-Gyn is the only doctor that I “keep in touch” throughout the years. And oh, yes, my dentist. I have been forced to drop quite a few family practitioners in the past when they 1. suggested that I get my tubes tied after I had my second child, 2. ordered expensive tests that still cost thousands after the 80% insurance pay when the disgonosis turned out to be Achilles tendinosis (So no, nothing to do with my nerves), 3. mis-diagnosed my blood clog as a muscle tear.

I gave the good doctor the litany of my symptoms: nausea & vomiting, dizziness, headache, sinus discomfort (but not pain nor pressure), stuffy feeling in my ears. I shared with him my theory of this being allergy-induced since my “condition” started a month ago when Spring supposedly arrived. I appreciated his gallant efforts in not rolling his eyes in my presence. I also informed him of some new development: running nose, a fever, and possibly the worst chill I have ever had in my life.

After all this, his diagnosis? “Are you suffering a lot of stress lately?”

I am a working mother with two rambunctious boys working full time commuting downtown with the company headquartered in another state 800 miles away and a boss that is scheming to either get me to move there or to get rid of me and a husband that travels 50% of the time for work. So yeah. I guess I am stressed.

“Have you suffered from any head injury? Did you hit your head somewhere?”

Why? You read my blog or my tweets?

“I think this is tension headache.”

Hello? What about the nausea and the vomiting?

“Are you married?”

Do I look tired and not care how I look? Yes, I am married.

“You should ask your husband to rub your neck.”

I rolled my eyes.

“Ha ha. Yes. I should write you a prescription to get him to do this, and if I submit it to your insurance, they may even pay him! Ok. Here is what I want you to do…”

Miracle drugs?

“I want to get some blood tests done to rule out the usual: thyroid, glands…”

Really? Why am I NOT surprised?

“And then I want you to get an MRI. I am worried about the headaches. The MRI is going to come back clean, but I want to rule anything out before I talk to you again. So after you get your MRI, call me, and I can talk to you about Tension Headaches.”

Seriously? Is an MRI even remotely necessary in my case?

Like a good Chinese girl (brought up in a Chinese society let me emphasize this), I did not question the good doctor. And really, should I even question my good fortune? I am blessed enough to be covered by a top-notch health insurance plan: the free health insurance provided by my company is a Cadillac plan. It covers everything. No pre-certification required for most of the expensive tests. If the doctor does not even want to wait and wants me to get an MRI before he even talks to me more, which I am actually able to get right away without having to call the insurance company and go through the labyrinth of paperworks, unlike say people on Medicare, should I not be grateful?

Fine. Call me an ungrateful bitch. But here is what I thought as soon as I walked out of the doctor’s office:

Son of a bitch. He is worried that he may get sued if something happens to me and he did not order me an MRI.

How much of the root cause for the rising health care costs in the U.S. is due to the fear of lawsuits?!

(Yeah, I know. You will be wanting to see me eating my foot if the good doctor was right and the MRI does detect something. THAT will solve all the questions about “What the F is wrong with you?!” in more ways than one. And seriously, if something is growing inside my head, you cannot fault me for being a bitch so would you really still want to see me eating my foot?… So the way I see it, either way, my foot will stay as far away from my mouth as humanly possible. Ha!)

All this rambling reminded me of a post from February 18, 2009, “Americans pay $650 billion more for health care than comparable countries…” when there was absolutely no traffic to my blog…  Reading the conclusion I drew more than a year ago,

“In the United States, the ‘average’ consumer of health care pays for only 12 percent of its total cost directly out of pocket (down from 47 percent in 1960), as well as for 25 percent of health care insurance premiums, a share that has stayed relatively constant for the last decade.  Well-insured patients who bear little, if any, of the cost of their treatment have no incentive to be value-conscious health care consumers.”

This sounds familiar but now we have the numbers to back up our suspicions:

In order for any health care reform to work and stick, it is important that we carry out the education and cultivation of a new generation of patients that are “value conscious” and treat the burden of health care, even when they do not have to pay for it DIRECTLY, as ultimately their own INDIRECT cross to bear.

I am saddened and a bit ashamed, seeing how I will be getting an MRI after all, albeit begrudgingly. I am only human – I do not want to bear the unnecessary risk of not getting this MRI just to make a point, especially since it is readily available to me. So that puts us in a bit of a conundrum, doesn’t it?

Foot in my mouth after all.

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WTF Wednesday: The Price of Tomatoes

February 10, 2010 imho is just a polite way to say I know you don't give a hoot what I think but I'm going to say it anyway

Tweet I am honored to welcome Velva from Tomatoes on the Vine to participate in the WTF Wednesday feature in which rants and foaming are conducted and strong opinions are shared on things that bother us, that just won’t go away until we get on our soap box and let it rip. Velva celebrates the deep, communal […]

30 comments

Wanker Wednesday: My problems with “The Help”

January 20, 2010 imho is just a polite way to say I know you don't give a hoot what I think but I'm going to say it anyway

Tweet I probably don’t need to publish this post on my blog. It is not appealing. It is not good writing. It will not make you laugh out loud. It is not even a proper rant. Besides, it is friggin’ long – I am amazed at how much I tapped out on my iPhod, and […]

20 comments

WTF Wednesday: Eye? Aye!

January 13, 2010 imho is just a polite way to say I know you don't give a hoot what I think but I'm going to say it anyway

Tweet It is Thursday (and actually soon will be Friday…) Yes, I am cheating again by backdating my post. But it IS Wednesday somewhere in the world, right? Oh. Who cares. It is a WTF post by me when I’ve got my WTF glasses on. (Yeah, this line is for you my Wicked Kitchen Lady…) […]

18 comments

WTF Wednesday: Fighting “I Guess I’m a Racist” with “I Guess I’m a Lazy Ass”!

December 16, 2009 imho is just a polite way to say I know you don't give a hoot what I think but I'm going to say it anyway

Tweet UPDATE (12-17-2009): I realized that my attempt at satire actually makes it even more confusing. My apology. I will lay it out straight: The “I’m a Racist” ad is ridiculous also because it predicted on the faulty assumption #1 HCR is mostly about the African Americans #2 Ergo I have been accused of being […]

20 comments

Quote Fingers vs. Jazz Hands

December 14, 2009 imho is just a polite way to say I know you don't give a hoot what I think but I'm going to say it anyway

Tweet I am never taken seriously on the hardcore race/social justice discussion website Racialicious. But it is ok. I still visit often and once in a while cannot help but put in my $0.02 worth and continue to be ignored by the other commenters that are a lot more serious than I am… Because… Oh […]

26 comments

All things on cable TV considered, I wish my hotel had porn…

December 8, 2009 imho is just a polite way to say I know you don't give a hoot what I think but I'm going to say it anyway

Tweet I am trapped in a hotel in a Boston suburb. Therefore I did what I always do in this situation: I did the grown-up thing. I went to the bar and got myself multiple drinks, got myself drunk and depressed. Depressed. Apparently alcohol is a depressant. Shit! So that’s what I have been doing […]

27 comments

To Hell with keeping my mouth shut and ignoring the crazies and the ignorant…

November 19, 2009 imho is just a polite way to say I know you don't give a hoot what I think but I'm going to say it anyway

Tweet I thought I could just comment on what has been happening to this country, specifically the latest, hottest, “meme” that is going on and making the news circuit and the blogoshpere and the twitterverse, by reminding all of us, once again, the Golden Rule. Yes, indeed, I am referring to the clever, seemingly harmless […]

13 comments