On One Hand

December 31, 2005

Protected: Aptitude Test

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Protected: Restoring 5 Weeks

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December 30, 2005

Cigarette Smoke

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A new TRUTH commercial is more ridiculous than any I’ve ever seen. It suggests we consider the following logical process:

Premise) Cigarette smoke contains methane.
Premise) Cow farts contain methane.
Conclusion) Ergo, smoking cigarettes is like sucking a cow’s ass!

I can’t beleive they actually put that on TV! Oh noble orange cardboard “TRUTH” arrow, what would we do without your wisdom? And what else can we infer using your sound and irrefutable logical process?

Premise) Wheat gluten contains a lot of RNA.
Premise) The HIV viruis contains a lot of RNA.
Concluson) Eating wheat products is like eating AIDS!

Premise) Sunlight contains high-frequency, cancer-causing radiation.
Premise) Emission from nuclear explosions contains high-frequency, cancer-causing radiation.
Conclusion) Going out in the sun is like nuclear war!

Not to defend smoking, but this campaign is ridiculous. But an even more ridiculous campagin consists of the anti-cannabis TV ads sponsored by the Association for a Drug Free America, hoping to convince us that marijuana is the cause of everything from car accidents to career failure to accidental shootings. Alcohol, on the other hand, is unmentioned by the campaign (while it’s no secret that alcoholic beverage companies like Budweiser and Coors donate millions to the politicians who ultimately allocate funding to the government’s anti-weed propaganda). My question is, if you’re concerned about the harm caused by drug abuse, why not focus on the drugs that, I dunno, CAUSE HARM. If they ran an anti-meth ad campaign, I would support it. The dangerous manufacture and use of highly-addictive methemphetamine is said to be killing more people and ruining more lives than all other illicit drugs put together (a recent National Geographic article cites a burn hospital in Kentucky in which 2/3 of patients are there because they caught on fire making meth). Heavy use is known to kill billions of brain cells, while scientists debate (and are generally skeptical) that marijuana does the same thing. Meth causes overconfidence, desperation and mania wheras marijuana causes calmness, hunger and laughing spells. So, where are all the meth ads?

December 27, 2005

Protected: Not Another Quiz

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December 26, 2005

Protected: Futuristic Dream

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Nursing Home Visit

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A Visit with my Great Aunt Leena, 98 years old.

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December 25, 2005

Hawai’i

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After months of waiting, I finally got the pictures from my family’s trip to Hawai’i from my Grandfather on Christmas Eve. I was there from July 9-19 this year.

coconut milk
HAWAI’I

December 24, 2005

Protected: Restoring 4 Weeks

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December 22, 2005

A Brief History of Love

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Adam. I met him in front of the shops on Broadway on the icy, salted sidewalks in late November, 2003. Wreaths and garlands hung from the lampposts and light flakes of snow filled the night air. Adam had just ended a long relationship by dramatic confrontation, and he wasn’t talking to his ex. “Brian hit me,” he said, “so I’ll never speak to him again.”

Adam had been living with Brian so was now cast out, and stayed with a 32-year-old woman who lived in a hostel near the campus I lived on. Sometimes I would bring Adam food since he didn’t have much money. Other times I’d sneak him into my school’s dining halls, and I let him stay with me in my bed after my roommate went home for Christmas. We walked to Pearl Street together. We smoked cloves on benches outside the park. We kissed under the bridge. We talked about road trips to California in the summer. We planned ahead.

Then Adam got a call from his ex-boyfriend’s parents: Brian had been in an awful car accident, driving on sedatives, and was in a coma. They didn’t know if he would survive. Brian’s parents didn’t like Adam so they wouldn’t give him the details. After days went by without word, Adam decided that Brian had died. Adam was falling apart, angry at everyone. He checked the obituaries every day to see if Brian was in them. I would sit across the table watching, torn over what to say. Once when I kissed Adam I opened my eyes to find his face covered in tears. I told him I was there for him. He looked away.

Later I found out he’d been fucking a guy on the third floor of the residence hall I lived in. And he was fucking a lot of other people, too. I said I forgave him, because of the circumstances. Then we got word that Brian was still alive, and had recovered. Adam said the accident made him realize he was still in love with Brian, and he went back to him. I was just a rebound, I gathered. We stopped talking. Last I heard Adam was a houseboy for a middle-aged gay couple in New York City.

Daniel. We were old acquantainces, and saw each other in the club for the first time since we were of high school age. The year was 2004, and the month was May. After a few minutes catching up, Daniel and I exchanged numbers again, and a week later he asked if he could kiss me. I said I wasn’t sure. I was negative about intimacy. We talked longer. In June, again Daniel asked if he could kiss me and this time I said yes. We took midnight walks through Denver’s city parks with friends, the four of us hopping over docks and climing statues. I kissed Daniel’s face all over as he slept. Once he opened an eye, and said, “you missed a spot.” I told him he meant a lot to me.

Then one day in July, Daniel’s father caught a strange stomach flu. Vomiting all day was accompanied by a faintness, a cold sweat, a strange pressure in the chest. Hours later he collapsed. They diagnosed it as a heart attack. Daniel’s father spent days in the hospital, then weeks bedridden at home. Daniel told me, “I can’t do this anymore” because of what happened, and we stopped dating. I told him, “if you have to cry, cry on me. Please, I can take it.” Daniel said it wouldn’t work. He didn’t have time for love or romance. Later we stopped talking.

Matt. In January we met under the multi-colored lights of the Boulder theater. It was 2005. Matt’s voice was dry and smooth, while his small eyes caught the lights as he looked up and shook my hand. I fell in love. Hours, days, months I spent kissing, touching, moving my lips over his body. Nights spent smoking marijuana in front of the television, feeding each other ice cream, kissing, fucking. Decending into blissful madness: lube, alcohol, condoms, cocaine. One day he left a message on my phone: “I’m going to be away from my cell for a while, I’ll talk to you in a week.” When he returned he admitted that he’d been in the Poudre Valley Mental Health facility.

I’d already known he was manic-depressive. Always confused, always lost, always distracted and unsure of what he wanted. I fought to convince him to take his meds. Lithium, bupropion, lorazepam, tergretol: the tablets accumulated in pill bottles above his sink. Cycles, cycles, cycles…one day he was sad or angry, the next day I caught him in his underwear jumping on my roommate’s bed and struggled to pull him down. He would be one day cocky and arrogant, the next day melancholy and sweet. When he was at his lowest he hid from me completely.

April he dumped me, but in May he was back. I couldn’t stand the uncertainty. One night, alone, I cried for the first time since I was twelve years old on a flimsy white card table covered with school papers and specks of tobacco from broken cigarettes. Matt was never gone forever, but I would never know when he’d come around, and was never sure if I would see him again. The next time I cried was on Matt’s chest, but he was sleeping so he didn’t hold me. The third time I cried, Matt was awake, but he looked down shocked and said “are you crying?” I lied, “no.” He was stoned and beleived me, but later called me high-maintanence. Matt disappeared again, and again, each time taking longer to return. Then finally he didn’t return at all.

I’m waiting for a relationship unmarred by uncontrolled disaster. I can catch a boy’s eyes for a moment, to see a glimmer, a spark between us and our minds are in harmony. Then something from outside, some act of fate, some disease breaks in and rips it apart. Always. Fills us with holes we can’t patch, and he is driven away.

Maybe this one, maybe the next one… when I am finally strong enough, God will let a boy know that I can hold him, and when tragedy strikes in his life he will say “yes, I can cry on you.” I will cry too.

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