Harrowed Insight

I was inspired to write my first novel Inside the Skin (formerly The Sea Trials of an Unfortunate Sailor) by life experiences I earned back in the late ’90s, early ’00s while working as a navy Equal Opportunity specialist, experiences the focus of which centered around the harassment, abuse, injury, and sometimes sadly even death as a result of the hatred for and confusion of the Don’t Ask Don’t Tell policy which had recently been implemented throughout the military.

Continue reading “Harrowed Insight”

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Meet Pioneering Stunt Woman Debbie Evans

DEBBIE EVANS
DEBBIEEVANS.COM

From her official website:
Debbie Evans, veteran of hundreds of motion-picture, television, and commercial stunts has been featured in numerous publications such as the LA Times, Reader’s Digest, Glamour Magazine, Cycle World, Dirtbike, and on television shows like Montel, ESPN, Winning Women, and Entertainment Tonight.

Debbie was inducted October 2003 into the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame. She has been awarded for her work on Taxi in 2005, The Matrix Reloaded in 2004 Taurus World Stunt Awards in the category “Best Overall Stunt by a Stuntwoman,” previously winning two Taurus awards in 2002 for driving a Honda Civic under a moving semi-truck in The Fast and the Furious…. [MORE]
 


 

With the help of Michelle Rodriguez, one of the stars of the Fast & Furious franchise, stunt driver Debbie Evans was challenged to take on the wild, icy landscape of the Yukon in Canada. VIA CARSCOOPS.COM

WOMENSHISTORYMONTH.GOV

 

 

Shades of LOVE from Women’s March in Jakarta

This is an immensely powerful post celebrating determined women of determined personal and collective courage.

Please visit the clubPAW website and show them your support.

#womenshistorymonth

clubPAW

Our friends in Jakarta, Indonesia organized a women’s march this Saturday (4 March 2017) morning in front of the Presidential Palace. One of clubPAW authors participated in the march to witness LOVE in what was really the start of something historic in Jakarta. Not just that, now clubPAW has stories from some people we got the chance to talk to.

We at clubPAW believe that the women’s march movement that has shined like sunlight to many major and small cities globally signifies something larger; a hope. A hope that there many who are still persevering in the fight for equality and love. Nay-sayers will always be there and the only way to turn them to our side is by engaging in healthy dialogues and exchanging ideas. There will always be people who look down on our efforts but remember that good will does not expect anything in return. At least…

View original post 1,055 more words

Poetry is for Girls

humor-image

I may occasionally write the junk, but rarely do I read it.

And it is not because I don’t like it that I rarely read it…

It’s because it, the really good stuff anyway, is so durn hard to read.

I’m talking Poetry here…

Poetry with a big, bold capital P.

And it is so hard for me to read (And by read I mean read. I mean really digging into the poem and fighting through the initial confusion and the complicated and often archaic words. I mean, not just reading the poem, but studying it and trying to close the gap in time from when the poem was written to when the poem is being read by learning about the poet and where and when and why and how he or she is from and where and when and why and how he or she lived and then coming to my own understanding of what I think the poem means and then trying to apply that meaning to my own life and where and when and why and how I live it. That’s what I mean by read.) because it takes more than a little bit of effort to read it.

I certainly don’t have time for all that junk.

Continue reading “Poetry is for Girls”

GLITTERS OF BLISS! | A Relating to Humans Poetry Feature

GLITTERS OF BLISS!
by Priyanki

 
If the clouds could come & give me a ride
I would sit on them & sway away in delight
And ask them to take me in their cozy coat
Covering me all in the softness galore
Ask them to take me in the world up away
High up in the clouds where they say fairies stay.
As I reach there, I will learn a few skills to tap & whoosh & fulfill some wish
Wishes of all those who are in need.
Those wishes of cute eyes of kids crying for help.
The ones who are lost in war, with no one to help.
Those unanswered prayers of people with disease, the ones suffering & asking for relief.
Those hard to be fulfilled wishes & prayers with which are linked the needy’s care.
Wishes of such kind seems impossible in today’s time. There is so much going around in those with dirty minds,
Those who cause chaos & all the mess.
& are killing ruthlessly & causing much stress
I may sound kiddish to dream of fairyland & bring glitters of kindness with me in my hand
However it may sound, but I don’t mind
As long as I wish to bring some good in Mankind.
Often I wonder where does the “kind” go from man.
Maybe I’m thinking too much, what can I do, I’m a woman.
I was born to think,
That’s what many say.
Woman think a lot
They are made that way, and I think again, “Thank God that I think.”
It’s my thinking that makes me ponder, to be a better being.
Everyday I think & try to reach my soul.
And
today my thinking wants to take a tour
In the world of clouds, where they say Angels live.
With a hope to bring in my palm, some glitters of bliss
So I have few powers to whoosh away the pain
That causes chaos often unexplained.

jollyprivy.wordpress.com


 
To learn how to have your poetry or other work profiled here, visit the Relating to Humans feature.

 
 

Guiding Principles of a Daughter’s Dad

I’m not the smartest or greatest dad there is. Not even close. I have many faults and made many mistakes over the years that I regret.

However, I do think I’m pretty good at understanding my faults and I work hard to minimize their impact to myself and others, especially to my family, as much as possible.

Even still… just because faults were minimized, it doesn’t mean there wasn’t impact from them from time to time. There was. I regret that.

But… we live and learn and live and relearn and one and on.

My daughter is my first child and when she was born I didn’t have a clue as to how to raise her.

I found out quickly though, that having children, and especially having the first child, is kind of like going to war.

No matter how much you plan for it, once the first shot is fired the best you can hope for is a campaign of organized chaos.

Fortunately, not long after she was born, I happened upon some useful information — probably from articles in a newspaper (remember those things?) — about the results of a couple of different studies.

I don’t remember the newspaper — probably the Stars & Stripes.

And I certainly don’t remember the studies or who conducted them so I cannot attest to the veracity of the reportage.

However, based upon my life experiences, what was reported seemed to speak the truth.

And from these apparent truths that I happened upon long ago, I was changed — or at least I sought to change — from their insights.

And from this change, I hope I became a better father to, not just my daughter, but to my sons as well. For I also hope that when my sons, too, have daughters– and based upon the make up of my lovely and loving wife’s family and mine, they probably will — they understand how their beliefs and, more importantly, their behavior can have such an impact on the outcome of their daughters’ lives.

The first thing I learned that changed my behavior as a father was…

The more education a father has the less the chance will be that his daughter will find herself in an abusive relationship as an adult.

The second was…

Girls with high self-esteem tend to have less sex during their middle and high school years and girls with low self-esteem tend to have more.

The inverse is true for boys.


It’s Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month.

#dadsmatter

 
 

Should He Stay Or Should He Go?

Wikimedia Commons

Last year it was announced that the US Treasury Department was planning to remodel the ten-dollar bill by replacing its current male model, Alexander Hamilton, with a female model.

That was before the Broadway musical “Hamilton” became a huge success… and the play’s creator and star and Presidential First Rapper, Lin-Manuel Miranda, had subsequently become an advocate and lobbyist for keeping the Founding Father and “Good Ol’ Boys” OG on the bill.

Miranda met recently with the US Treasury Secretary and it seems that his lobbying effort on behalf of his musical muse has paid off.

 

So, in the somewhat spirit of the United Nation’s #HeforShe campaign, should Hamilton stay or should he go and be replaced by a female historical hero?

Alexander Hamilton was a Founding Father of the United States, chief staff aide to General George Washington, one of the most influential interpreters and promoters of the U.S. Constitution, the founder of the nation’s financial system, the founder of the Federalist Party, the world’s first voter-based political party, the Father of the United States Coast Guard, and the founder of The New York Post. As the first Secretary of the Treasury, Hamilton was the primary author of the economic policies of the George Washington administration. (Wikipedia)

 

 

If would be great if you could expand on your response in the comment section.

For instance: Who should the female model be? If not Hamilton, then which bill’s male model should go? If you no longer use hard currency, are you, as Kurt is, looking forward to the permanent chip implant?


 

HAVE YOU SEEN THIS?

 
 

I CAN’T PICTURE YOU WITH A KID | A Relating to Humans Women’s Issues Feature

I CAN’T PICTURE YOU WITH A KID
by asyarhein

FROM THE WOMEN’S ISSUES ARCHIVE
 

“I can’t picture you with a kid.”

“Neither can I.”

I’m too spontaneous. My passion for writing and journalism was constantly competing with my passion for buffalo wings, rum and Steve Madden; there is no room for a kid in the newsroom or at the bar during happy hour and being six months pregnant squeezing those ridiculous swollen dogs into new candy apple reds is just negligent- everyone knows five inch heels can’t handle that kind of stress. Yet, there we were in the bathroom waiting for a pee stick who decided to use the entire two minutes to make up its mind. I can’t do this. I’m too young. There are so many places I want to travel to. If I get a great deal on Groupon I want to be able to just book it! To call in to work sick and live my life! You can’t do that with a baby there’s planning. Clearly not enough in this situation but that’s beyond the point. The point is… Do babies even get passports? I mean how often would you have to update that photo? I don’t have time for that. Who hikes Yosemite with a papoose? Seriously. I want to wake up in the morning and see a sting ray under my hut in Bora Bora not a diaper genie. And now I’m positive that’s not going to happen.

“Have you thought of your options.”

Sure, I had. But what were they? Have a baby. Kick out Jimmy Choo to make room for Osh Kosh. Drop out of school to PlaySkool. Put down the pen to set up one to play in.

Or don’t. Adoption is an option. Earn my tiger stripes just to give my cub to someone with less of a pride.

Or don’t. To just pretend it never happened. I mean, Forever21 doesn’t do maternity.

“…and that sound is your little girl’s heartbeat.”

They said it was okay to cry but I couldn’t. You don’t pre-order MAC’s new midnight sensation just to make it run. And I would make sure my daughter would know that, or would I? Maybe some happy couple somewhere far away like Arkansas wouldn’t let her wear make-up until 16 or she would be given to some psycho pageant people in Pasadena who would have her glitzed out at six months. I couldn’t let that happen to my baby. My baby. But was I her momma? Constantly teetering on this tottering life was no place for a kid. So I had to stop being one.

“I’m having a girl.”

The last 18 weeks of my life had now planned at least the next 18 years of it. She would be mine. She would stalk shoe sales with me. She would be my editor. At the end of the day, it only matters what she has to say. She would be just like me.

“I don’t hear anything.”

She was just like me. Spontaneous as all hell. It’s okay to cry they said but I couldn’t. I don’t remember it happening like this on the tv shows or in the movies. The chapter in the health books didn’t elaborate on this. The doctor didn’t break it down like my body did. There was no what to expect when you stop expecting. there’s nothing on un-nesting. one minute im sitting there answering phones and making appointments at my desk. the second minute im up and bolting down the hall passing the click-clacking Manolo Blahniks, my hush puppies stay silent towards the little girls room, the rest room. where this little girl is not resting but not awake. a little girl controlling her own fate. while i was kicking around parenthood, she decided to never kick. i close my mouth and scream. and the tears who have been planning this for so long finally make their escape and i don’t even try to stop them. they grab hold of the covergirl clump crusher and run.
 

asyarheinox.wordpress.com


Please submit your creative expressions that bring awareness to women and gender issues to the Relating to Humans Women’s Issues feature. All submissions will be profiled on the blog throughout Women’s History Month.

 
 

From Pioneers To Propaganda


 

This is a propaganda video direct from the US Navy’s official website.

More specifically, it is a two-minute or so inspiring profile piece of a female Hull Technician, a rating traditionally reserved for and assigned to male sailors, found on a page from the Navy’s official website dedicated solely to the recruitment of women.

Now, the word “propaganda” typically comes with negative connotations… at least to me it does.

However, in this case, I regard it as very positive development, for it was not that long ago that you would have been hard-pressed to find a female “HT” in the US Navy.

And, happily (seeing how I am a recruiter for my film and not for the navy (though I strongly encourage every American to consider serving their country militarily)), it just so happens that the protagonist and his small division of men of the Nineties-era short film I am seeking your support for are also Hull Technicians.

Pretty coincidentally cool, huh…

And it is they, these male HT characters of mine, who, through their dialogue and actions — as harassing and as hazing as they may be — show us how I suspect  know many real-life male sailors would have  felt and reacted at the time about the recent arrival of the first-ever female sailors to their warship.

I only hope that the first-ever female sailors and other female service members who are right now getting ready to report to combat-related duty assignments, assignments on the front lines and maybe even hidden behind the lines, assignments that until very recently were solidly and stolidly forbidden to females, receive a less harassing and more welcoming environment than the females in the film.

Please consider supporting me in the making of my short film LEAVE; for I truly believe, with your support the film can provide much needed awareness to present-day realities in an artistic, entertaining, and meaningful way.

Thank you for your support!

 

For a list of Donation Reward Packages, please click here.

 
 

INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY: Celebrating the Success Worldwide

I don’t normally do this kind of thing but, because this is a day to celebrate the grand achievements women all around the world are making, and because this is such phenomenal information (albeit excessively long and highly wonky), I am sharing this cut and paste from the National Business Women’s Council, a US Government organization*.

My summary of this Executive Summary of a US Census Survey regarding US Business is that basically what follows is the empirical data/evidence of what I see happening in all sectors of US society… especially that of the Publishing Industry.

And that is…

WOMEN. ARE. CRUSHING. IT!

Yeah…

The King is dead…

Long live the Queen!
 
*As I understand it, unless specifically marked, anything produced by the US Government is in the Public Domain and free to use. Howeever, if you are planning on doing any copy and pastes of anything you do not own the copyright to, learn the rules first for yourself before you do. I am not a copyright lawyer so do not take my word for it. See my Terms of Use page for more on this.



The Growth and Development of Women-Owned Enterprises in the United States, 2002 – 2012: An Analysis of Trends from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Survey of Business Owners

Women continue to enter into the ranks of business ownership at rates exceeding the national average. Indeed, the rate at which women are launching businesses is on the rise.

  • As of 2012, there are nearly 10 million women-owned businesses[1} in the United States. These enterprises employ over eight million workers and generate over $1.4 trillion in revenues.
  • Between 2002 and 2012, the number of women-owned firms increased at a rate 2-1/2 times the national average (52% vs. 20%), employment in women-owned firms grew at a rate 4-1/2 times that of all firms (18% vs. just 4%), and the growth in revenues generated by women-owned firms paralleled that of all firms (up 51% compared to 48%).
  • The pace of business formation among women is on the rise. Between 1997 and 2002, the number of women-owned firms grew by 20%, as it did between 2002 and 2007. Then, between 2007 and 2012, the number of women-owned firms increased by 27% – a significant uptick in business start-ups.
  • On average, between 2002 and 2012, women launched an average of 928 net new firms each and every day. Within that ten-year period, there were an average of 714 net new women-owned firms per day between 2002 and 2007, and 1,143 per day between 2007 and 2012.

While more and more women are starting businesses, those businesses remain significantly smaller than average.

  • Women-owned businesses comprise 36% of the country’s businesses, employ 7% of the private-sector workforce, and contribute 4% of business revenues. Ten years prior, women-owned firms represented a smaller 28% of the country’s businesses, but contributed a similar share of employment (7%) and revenues (4%).
  • In terms of employment, fully 91% of women-owned firms have no employees other than the owner, and just 2% have 10 or more employees. Women-owned firms with 10 or more employees provide three-quarters of the jobs provided by women-owned firms. While most women-owned firms remain small in terms of employment, it should be pointed out that the number of women-owned employer firms (which now numbers over one million) has increased by 13% between 2002 and 2012, while overall the number of U.S. employer firms has declined by 1.8% over the same period.
  • With respect to revenue size, 82% of women-owned firms generate less than $100,000 in annual revenues, and just 3% generate $500,000 or more in revenues. This top 3% of women-owned firms accounts for three-quarters of the revenues generated by women-owned businesses. Further, it should be noted that – while less than 2% of women-owned firms generate $1 million or more in revenues – the number of those firms increased by 47% between 2002 and 2012, compared to an 18% increase among all million-dollar enterprises.
  • The average revenue per woman-owned firm is $143,731. This compares to average revenues of $440,190 among all privately-held firms and $1,213,944 among all firms – which includes large, publicly-traded firms (which average $48.2 million in per-firm revenues).

Perhaps the most remarkable trend in women’s entrepreneurship seen over the past decade is the phenomenal growth in business ownership among women of color.

  • In 2002, there were fewer than one million (909,321) minority women-owned firms in the U.S., representing 14% of women-owned firms. As of 2012, there are nearly 3.8 million firms owned by women of color, comprising 38% of women-owned businesses.
  • Between 2002 and 2012, when the number of women-owned firms overall increased by 52%, the number of non-minority women-owned firms grew by just 9%, while the number of minority women-owned firms overall grew by 315% – a quadrupling in numbers. Specifically, the number of Native American/Alaska Native women-owned businesses increased by 67%, the number of Asian American women-owned businesses more than doubled (up 121%), the number of Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander women-owned businesses increased by 136%, and the number of Latina-owned businesses nearly tripled (up 172%) – as did the number of African American women-owned businesses (up 178%).
  • As of 2012, there are 1,521,494 African American women-owned firms in the U.S., 1,469,991 Latina-owned firms, 749,197 Asian American women-owned firms, 131,064 Native American/Alaska Native women-owned firms, and 24,982 Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander women-owned firms in the U.S.

As the number of women serving in the military has grown, so has the number of female veteran-owned enterprises – at a rate exceeding even that of minority women-owned businesses.

  • In 2007, there were 97,114 veteran women-owned firms in the U.S., representing 4% of all veteran-owned firms. As of 2012, there are 383,302 veteran women-owned firms, comprising 15% of all veteran-owned firms.
  • Between 2007 and 2012, when the number of all veteran-owned businesses increased by 3% – from 2.4 to 2.5 million – the number of female veteran-owned businesses increased by a phenomenal 295%, a near quadrupling in numbers in just five years.

Regionally, the sharpest rise in the number of women-owned firms has been seen in the southern region of the U.S., where overall population growth has been the strongest. However, women-owned firms in the central part of the country have bounced back most strongly from the 2007-2009 recession.

  • Between 2002 and 2012, the greatest growth in the number of women-owned firms has been seen in Georgia (+92%), Mississippi (+89%), Texas (+85%), Florida (+85%), and Louisiana (+74%) – all Southern states. Indeed, all of the states where women-owned firm growth exceeds the national average by more than 10 points are in the South, except for Arizona and Nevada.
  • Four out of the five fastest-growing metropolitan areas for women-owned firms are also in the South: Memphis (+160%), Charlotte (+138%), Orlando (+127%), Las Vegas (+101%), and San Antonio (+101%).
  • While states in the South lead the way in business growth over the entire ten-year period, Central states are home to the most positive trends when comparing growth during the 2007-2012 post-recession period to the 2002-2007 pre-recession period. There are 19 states in which post-recession growth in the number of women-owned firms is at least 10 points higher than pre-recession growth; most are in the North Central or Midwest regions of the U.S. The leading “bounce back” states are Louisiana, Nebraska, Iowa, North Dakota, Indiana, and Mississippi. At the other end of the spectrum, ten states currently lag pre-recession growth rates – including Maine, Georgia, Hawaii, and New Hampshire, where post-recession growth is more than 5% lower than pre-recession growth.

As women business owners themselves are growing more diverse, so are the businesses that they are starting. Despite growing industry diversification, however, the largest concentration of women-owned firms is still seen in the most traditional areas of business ownership for women – sectors that have lower than average revenues per firm.

  • Women-owned firms are found in every industry. In fact, 2% or more of the nearly 10 million women-owned firms are found in 13 of the 19 major industries – including over 260,000 women-owned construction firms, over 200,000 women-owned finance and insurance firms, and nearly 160,000 women-owned transportation and warehousing enterprises.
  • Despite the growing diversity in the types of businesses that women own, nearly half (49%) of women-owned firms are found in three sectors: other services (1.9 million firms, within which there are nearly 1 million beauty and nail salons), health care and social assistance (1.6 million firms, within which there are over 600,000 child day care service businesses), and professional/scientific/technical services (1.3 million firms, within which there are a cornucopia of such firms as management and human resources consultancies, translation services, and veterinarians).
  • Between 2002 and 2012, the greatest growth in the number of women-owned firms has been in educational services (+91%), administrative services (+90%) and other services (+86%) – growth rates nearly double the overall 52% increase during the period. However, even within slower-growing industries, the rate of growth in the number of women-owned firms outpaces overall growth in every single industry sector.
  • Women-owned businesses are more likely than average to have achieved revenues of $500,000 or more in five industries: wholesale trade, manufacturing, accommodation and food services, construction, and transportation and warehousing. However, women-owned firms in these industries comprise only 11% of all women-owned firms.
  • Conversely, among some of the most populous sectors for women-owned businesses – most especially other services, administrative, support and waste management services and health care and social assistance, average revenues are well under $100,000 per firm. Raising the overall economic clout of women-owned businesses would then require a two-pronged approach:
  •         1. Assist women in the more populous, lower per-firm revenue sectors in scaling-up their enterprises, and
            2. Encourage more women to start businesses in the less populous but more likely to scale sectors.



     

    [1] Throughout this report, the term “women-owned” refers to enterprises that are at least 51% owned and operated by a woman or group of women. Businesses equally-owned by a man and a woman (or equal numbers of men and women) are not included – primarily because the way that equally-owned firms have been identified has differed in each of the past four business census years, thus precluding accurate trend analysis.

     
     

Seeking Submissions Discussing Women’s Issues throughout Women’s History Month

March brings with it Women’s History Month, as well as the launching of our Indigogo campaign to raise the funds that will allow us to produce our short film LEAVE.

And, not coincidentally, both Women’s History Month and our film LEAVE share the goal of highlighting and raising awareness of the many valuable contributions women have made and continue to make to societies all throughout the world.

In my effort to celebrate and support both Women’s History Month and the funding of our short film LEAVE, I am asking you to share your creative efforts here — either as an anecdote, a very short story, a poem, a photograph, or artwork — that seeks to raise awareness of women’s issues…

Because we all know that women’s issues are everyone’s issues.

To augment these Guest Contributions I hope and expect to receive, I will be sharing past submissions from our Relating to Humans Women’s Issues archive.

Even though I haven’t been promoting it lately because I’ve been so involved with other projects, the Relating to Humans feature is still very much a thing here and I encourage you to check it out and consider submitting your work to any/all of the issue features.

All submissions I receive for Women’s History Month will be published on the blog and on the Women’s Issues feature page.

So, if you have something to say that raises the awareness of women’s issues, please consider sharing it here. To submit your work, please follow the Submission Guidelines found on the Relating to Humans page.

And also, please consider supporting us in our efforts to produce LEAVE, a short film that seeks to both entertain and inspire discussion for positive change.


This article has been updated to reflect the change in submission guidance. This will allow all articles to go live on the Women’s Issues feature page immediately and will provide links back to the author’s website, versus submitting them through the Contact page and having to wait for me to publish them.

 
 

THE WOMAN IN ME | A Relating to Humans Woman’s Issues Feature

THE WOMAN IN ME
by Debolina Coomar

When I was a daughter, I had dreams,
I learnt that life is not easy, and nothing is what it seems.
When I became a student, I had aspirations,
I learnt that achievements are important, and learnings are an inspiration.
When I became a professional, I had goals,
I learnt that life is full of challenges, and we have to take up different roles.
When I was a wife, I had a duty,
I learnt caring, sharing and trust in a relationship is the real beauty.
When I became a mother, I had responsibilities,
I learnt to take up challenges and fulfill them with my abilities.
When I wear so many different masks everyday,
Each one is different and unique in its own way.
But, when I see myself in the mirror,
I see so many faces, but I cannot find HER.
The woman in me keeps calling me everyday,
I just avoided her as I almost have nothing to say.
But, one day, she saw me back into my eyes,
And wanted to know why I ignored all her cries.
I forgot HER as I was busy being everything else,
But, now I want to be ME and let myself out,
I want to open my heart and let it shout.
I want to start living as MYSELF and let the world see,
The WOMAN OF SUBSTANCE, because that is the best I have in me.

debolinacoomar.wordpress.com


 

Women's History Month

It is my pleasure and honor to kick-off our March-long celebration of Women’s History Month with such a beautiful and inspiring poem by Debolina Coomar.

Thank you for submitting your poetic creativity to our Woman’s Issues feature page, Debolina, thereby allowing us all to enjoy your words.

And I invite and strongly encourage you to visit the Relating to Humans feature and consider sharing with us some of your creative inspiration.

As was Debolina’s, all submissions meeting the editorial standards of yours truly submitted to the Women’s Issues page throughout the month of March will be published to the blog.

And now is a good time to submit your work to all the features, as I am in the process of archiving all submissions received prior to this year, which means each feature page will be empty and the early submissions will receive top billing, so to speak.

Please visit the Relating to Humans page for the Submission Guidelines.

Additionally, I invite you to click on the poster above to learn about some of the things the US Government, via the Small Business Administration and the National Business Women’s Council has planned to celebrate Woman’s History Month in its efforts to raise awareness of Women and Gender Issues.

And lastly, please don’t forget to show your support for our short film, LEAVE, by visiting and following (and spreading the word about) our facebook page at www.facebook.com/leavethemovie.

 
 

Finally! A Relating to Humans Archive System

Like I am currently in the process of doing for my taxes, I had until recently also been procrastinating heavily on setting up an archive system for the Relating to Humans feature.

However, yesterday, I finally got my proverbial butt in gear (I would really really like to know who came up with that saying…think about it…butts…gears…yeah, weird) and set up all the required archive pages and moved all the submissions to the feature that were out of cycle (You may recall from the Submission Guidelines that submitted work will stay posted on the feature for three-month cycles, after which time they will be archived. This allows the feature to stay fresh, so to speak, with new content.) and now we finally have a proper archive system.

So, if you submitted your work to the feature more than three months ago you will now be able to view it on its appropriate archive page.

This is a one-man operation here so I cannot guarantee that posts will be archived exactly at three months; but they’ll get moved somewhere there abouts.

Now that I finally got my you know what in gear, you’ll find that we are in need of some new work. Consequently, I encourage all of you to consider submitting your talents to one of the Feature’s features, if you know what I mean.

There’s a lot going on in our pretty but oh so petulant world for us to discuss and I would love to know what your thoughts are on all the major issues.

And please let me know if you have any suggestions for how we can improve the feature. I would truly appreciate that.

That’s all for now; however, there will be some new and interesting (at least to me) things going on soon so please stay tuned for future updates and announcements.

Now, if someone could please tell me what gear my you know what needs to be in for me to get the motivation up enough to complete my taxes…???

MY VIEW – A Women’s Issues Feature

When DotedOn submitted her essay My View to the Relating to Humans Women’s Issues feature, I could immediately feel its power and its truth, and the life lived as written, raw and exposed.

When submitted, DotedOn initially addressed it to me. I wrote to her soon after and asked if I could take out the address as I felt it may be distracting from the essay’s message. She wrote me back and, kindly, as she always is, said it was fine for me to make the edits and, since English is not her first language, she asked that I make any other edits that I felt may be necessary. I was pleased when she wrote this because there were, in fact, some grammar adjustments that I had wanted to make.

And, with haste, I made the adjustments.

However, after I read her essay with my edits, I found that something had happened. It seemed its power had somehow been diminished. I immediately restored the essay back to its original version, which, in turn, restored its power.

I spent the rest of the day reflecting on what had happened. The edits I made were almost insignificant, really; however, the impact of the edits was wholly significant. The impact was devastating to the overall feel and effect of the essay.

Perhaps, then, our words draw their strength not so much from our language and its form, but from our voice and our uniquely individual inflections and tones as only we can speak them…


 

My View

by DotedOn
 

I’m a single mom. I have five kids. I escaped an abusive relationship because I got to the point where nothing could be worse than staying one more second in that house. I exchanged comfort for unknown. I feel guilt every single day of my life. I know I took the right decision. I still don’t understand why my kids don’t see it and keep asking me why I don’t go back to daddy. They were there, they should know why.

Some people admire me… I still don’t get why. What’s to admire? That I left 5 kids without a dad? That I tolerate abuse for so long? That I’m alone and lost in another country miles away from every person dear to me?

I get questions like: How can you manage alone with 5 kids? I rub my eyes. I have everything. My question is: How could a widow 80 years ago manage 11 kids and no washing machine or fridge or disposable diapers or Nintendo’s to keep the kids quiet for a while.

Who should I please? Why I get judged? Why if I chose to be happy I feel this guilt all the time?
 

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