Archive for the 'Friends' Category

17
Mar
10

Facebook Fed Friends Go Undercover to Keep America Safe

From Wired.Com

The next time someone tries to “friend” you on Facebook, it may turn out to be an undercover fed looking to examine your private messages and photos, or surveil your friends and family. The Electronic Frontier Foundation has obtained an internal Justice Department document that describes what law enforcement is doing on social networking sites.


05
Oct
09

Clay Aiken Why Have You Forsaken Me?

ClayAikenPicture

19
Feb
09

Two of my Favorite Ladies

princess

12
Dec
08

Dillsnap Cogitations One Year Anniversary

one-year-oldDillsnap Cogitations is one year old. I would like to thank all of the wonderful people that have taken the time to visit this corner of the Internets. I especially appreciate all of the good folks who have left comments and words of encouragement. Also, a special shout out to the Human Barrier Deconstruction contributors who generously gave their time and effort for my project.

My therapist was the one who recommended that I keep a blog journal to keep track of my thoughts and feelings. At the time, I was going through a tumultuous period of great personal upheaval and needed a vehicle to vent my frustrations.

Here is an excerpt from my initial post:

I would like to introduce myself. My name is Johnnypeepers and I put up with absolutely no (zero) bullshit – none.

I have managed to remain on “the outs” through years of psychiatric treatment and a mountain of pills. I have no compunction with eradicating the world of one less gutter-punk with a death wish.

That being said, I do not want to give the impression that I am a hardass. I tend to gravitate towards a variety of unrelated topics depending on the number of pills, Wild-Turkey triples, or crank lines that I have ingested. Make no mistake though, the chemicals have no bearing on the truth that I disseminate. Rather, they drive my points home harder in my brain when I type them.

Feel free to tell your buddies about JP, especially if they are of the female persuasion. Johnny spent a lot of time staring at pastel covered cinder-blocks and could use a little girlie interaction. 99% of the broads I hit up on Craiglist’s personal ads end up being twill-chompers aiming to impale my brown-eye. Nothing against the fruits, I just ain’t looking to relive the glory nights of non-consensual institutional coupling with 315 lb. sweaty broke-back uncut bears. Besides, I am still going through a new set of undies every week due to my inconvenient crimson drawer blotting. Enough of that shit – I know I ain’t gonna land no honeys galavanting down that memory lane.

Peace Out!

In the past year, the blog and my treatment progress have contributed greatly to moving me in the direction of a productive member of society. I look forward to many more posts and friendly exchanges with fellow friends and bloggers.
Love,
Johnny Peepers 🙂
01
Jul
08

More Tales from the Institution

I spent my first two months in the investment unit. There were no windows or opportunities to breathe fresh air. I rarely got a chance to see sunlight, other than brief glimpses walking down the hallway going to and leaving school. They food was always served up cold on plastic trays, as our handlers would be sure to wait for the last minute to feed us. I was in a power struggle with the Bishop (my therapist). When I decided to play ball, he would sign my release into general population. Due to my stubborn-arsed teenage rebellion mindset, that would take a little while.

I saw a lot of crazy shit down there. Broken down mentally-ill adolescents strapped down to mattresses and shot full of thorazine in cinder block isolation cells. Kids slammed on the floor with knees in their backs and elbows pressed forcefully into their temples. Chronic masturbators would rattle their bunks half the night in a desperate attempt to escape their mental and physical enslavement (much like the soldiers in Vietnam).

One kid from Arizona had been violently beaten in a gang initiation rite before being locked up. He had a huge scar on the top of his skull where a crow bar had been buried. Another bloke desperately seeking peer acceptance had been kicked in the scrotum over 500 times to get into his gang. He had a pair the size of grapefruits and had to walk around with a toilet seat shaped pillow to sit on to ease the pain. One day in science class I hid it from him when he was talking to the teacher.

Most of the teens there were wards of the state from California and Texas. Their treatment costs were subsidized, and as a result, they were usually gonna be there for a long time. For the most part they were throw-aways from broke families, had been heavily abused, and were kept heavily medicated. It wasn’t hard to spot the institutionalized lifer crowd. They had nothing to look forward to and this joint was probably a cake-walk compared to the horrors of their prior lives.

There were a lot of kids from L.A. One of my best friends was a hardcore Mexican gang-banger, and incredibly gifted athlete, with a huge tattoo on his stomach honoring his East-L.A. hood that read “Carmellas.” Another good buddy of mine was the privileged son of a famous attorney who spent his pre-incarceration days smoking grass and fondling Southern California nubiles on Catalina Island. Another cat was a spoiled little cry-baby sonabitch whose father was a executive at Columbia Studios.

Oh yeah, investment. So after school, and on weekends, we had to work off points as a form of punishment. This required everyone to stand silently for 30 minute increments every waking hour. At 1 point every 2 minutes, I must have worked off about 5,000 of them in a 2-month period. There were no books to be read, and my mind went into a depressive hibernation period.

All of the counselors were built like brick shit-houses. Illema was a huge muscle-bound Samoan who had played professional football for the San Diego Chargers. I tempted my fate one day standing in investment with him at the helm. He was kind enough to allow us to play a form of hangman while we worked off our points. There was a running inside joke that a few of my peers and I had concerning Illema’s appearance. The thing was that he looked like one of the gorillas from the movie Planet of the Apes. The brow, the shape of the skull, even his mannerisms were spot on.

So it is my turn to come up with a word for the hangman game. Instead of choosing a word, I came up with an acronym hoping my buddies would guess it. After a few round with no success, our 30-minute standing round was about up and Illemma told me to give up the word. I pondered for a couple of seconds and shouted out “POTMFA – planet of the muthafuckin’ apes.” My buddies started howling with laughter while Illemma and the rest of the kids stood there dumbfounded. Thankfully, this broad-chested ass-beating Somoan machine did not catch on that he was the butt of my joke, and render my ass physically demolished.

27
May
08

Project: Human Barrier Deconstruction IV

I am proud to announce another superb contribution to the Human Barrier Deconstruction project. Christine, the author of the cognition-provoking blog, all the elbows, was kind enough to posit her thoughts for my loosely defined initiative.

I consider myself fortunate that Christine and I crossed Internet paths. She has a delicately poised light and darkness composition that mirrors my Earthly experience. I consider Christine a fellow universal consciousness enlightening traveler. This is from her blog:

i want to be a ballerina pointy toed graceful
perky ones maybe an astronaut into the sky
burrow up find God president of the united
states no more war everyone eats and has a
home
a doctor? save lives cure rickets a
teacher
poison minds a model ugly will be
the new beatiful
i will be beautiful in my ugly
way
a mother mutha fucker patient and kind
cookies always on hand and a lacy apron
a soldier buffalo soldier soldier of P E A C E a
good friend
happy wife i’ll have a garden filled
with taller than usual snapdragons and violas
bumble bees ladybugs holy virgin clean sky
sky sky blue and so on

when i grow up-

Here is Christine’s contribution to the project:

When Johnny Peepers began Operation Human Barrier Deconstruction, i was very excited. Those who’ve contributed thus far have impressed me greatly and i secretly wondered how i could contribute. When he asked me i was excited- and arrogant.

i thought i would be able to whip something out quick and easy, as i have many thoughts about how screwed up and senseless the world can be. i thought, thought, thought, but each time i attempted to write something, i froze up.

The thing is, i was- am- distrustful of people. i fear them, the many ways i can hurt them, ways they may hurt me. That is my human barrier. And i am thinking that perhaps many people in this world operate from distrust.

i think, try to believe and practice, the idea of folks as individuals. i like to think that i take people one at a time, doling out benefit of the doubt. i bumped into this while trying to come up with something good, worthwhile, meaningful for Johnny. i’m thinking maybe i don’t practice this as much as i’d hoped.

So all that’s led me to this- in order for me to connect with people on a human level, beyond skin or genitals, appearance or status, sexuality or location- i must set aside fear. i must take a chance and trust. i have to make a conscious effort to find all that is common amongst us, what unites us, what we all share.

Ruminating, i found and discarded many things. i attempted to be positive. Laughter, i thought. All people cherish laughter, but then i thought of people who live in constant fear of being bombed, losing their sons and daughters, people not knowing when their next meal will be. Folks in such circumstances might not be interested in laughing. i thought hope is something all people share, but hope has become a cliché to many, a joke, some lofty, far off la-la-land kind of sentiment so many’ve lived without it. God? Yeah right. People kill one another in the name of this god or that god.

i wanted something universal. And i was brought back to the idea of fear. i know that sounds totally negative and in direct opposition to the purpose of Johnny’s mission. i thought so too, at first. Fear motivates humans to do unspeakable things, to hide, hurt, maim. But think about it a little more, and though it is sad, it is something we’ve all experienced- everyone of us- and it is something we can help one another through. Realizing that we all experience this may, if we allow it, may arouse in us compassion, empathy and understanding.

The need to be loved and understood also unite us as humans. Even when some of us do terrible things, there is a longing to be known, understood. Knowing that many are afraid of being hurt and making an effort to reach out, to understand, to learn others, can change the world i think, can melt away the fear.

i wish that, pray that; hope for a world in which we could go beyond the superficial, below the skin, over the borders, through the miasma of propaganda to the marrow, the rich valleys, to the clear sky of human spirit and freedom. True freedom- a desire in which we are also united. Not license, but freedom.

Gosh. This sounds so good to me. i can almost taste it. How though? How? i begin with me and you. i’ve revealed my mediocrity of thought, my fairytale idea- my dark fairytale. It probably sounds stupid. i’m afraid of doing Operation Human Barrier Deconstruction a disservice, but i take this chance because what unites us and what i wish to unite us are different. i wish peace to connect us. i wish that love did.

(copyright 2008 ) c A Hughes
05.25.08

12
May
08

Project: Human Barrier Deconstruction III

The Human Barrier Deconstruction Project is an ongoing campaign designed to educate and enlighten one another about our universal similarities, needs, and aspirations (see Part I and Part II). The ultimate aim is to break down the false barriers and artificial mental constructs that humans use to compartmentalize and divide one another.

Nono is a 21-years-old Muslim-Sarawakian-Malay young lady from Malaysia. She is a mechatronics engineering student studying at International Islamic University.

Nono possesses many endearing and kind qualities. Her outlook on life is refreshing and innocent, while projecting a spirit of compassion and understanding beyond her years. I am very grateful to Nono for taking the time to write about her life, country, and views for this effort. Her blog is I am Myself Again.

Nono writes:

I am living in a country with a multiracial mix of Malays, Chinese, Indians, and other native races such as Iban, Kadazan, Kenyah, Kelabit, Bajau and etc (a lot to mention here). I am living in a country that has undergone a complete and rapid metamorphosis in every aspect of its people’s lives (be it in the sector of economic, political, social and cultural). I am living in a country that has a lot of interesting places that will definitely appeal to visitors. I am living in a country that offers a wide range of delicious cuisines, such as Malay, Chinese, Nyonya, Indian, Iban, and even Thai’s cuisines. I am living in a country called Malaysia.

Oh, I forgot to mention earlier that I am a Muslim and I am Malay. In Malaysia, our official religion is Islam and our official language is Bahasa Melayu (Malay language). But those from different religions can practice their religion freely without any restrictions. The same goes for the languages too.

Living in a multiracial country has taught me to be more aware with anything that I do, whether it is in the form of action or words. This is because each and everyone who is living in my country may have different sensitivities, therefore, each and everyone needs to adapt with that. In addition, I am living in a country surrounded by people, Muslims and non Muslims, whereby religious issues do really matter to everyone. Although sometimes we do have some problems associated with races and religions, but alhamdulillah, we are still able to live together in this harmonious atmosphere. I am really in awe because of the toleration, understandings, and respects of all Malaysians. From the bottom of my heart, Malaysia is a place that I couldn’t wish anywhere better to live in this world. I realize that I am being very excited here. I am not trying to make an exaggerated claim about my country or about my people. I am just proud to be Malaysian. 😉

In Malaysia, we celebrate Chinese New Year, Eid Fitri, Deepavali, Gawai Dayak, Christmas, and some other big festivals (a lot to mention here). Every year, the spirits of celebration exist during the major festive season of all religions and races, without discrimination and hatred. Instead, everyone is very supportive and excited about it! As one of my friends wrote in her blog, it is so rare in today’s world to see a melting pot of culture and to have everyone be understanding and supportive about this matter. Don’t you think it is a very good thing?

Probably, the understanding that we have here in Malaysia may be used to break down the mental barriers and artificial mental constructs that humans use to compartmentalize and divide each other as aimed by Johnny. Who knows?

But personally to me, in order to achieve the mutual understandings with each other, we need to have freedom in our thought. We should not pride ourselves in our thoughts and opinions, as it may lead to personal judgments, which are more weighted to one party benefits, and leads the other party to terror. We should think for the sake of all because we are all the same. One more thing, it is not enough to say that you should be good and fair to all. You should show it.

In a nutshell, human beings share the same nature at which it indicates innocent, liking the good and hating the bad. All humans like moderation while extremism is abnormal to the human nature. We are not only responsible to ourselves and our people, but to other people as well, because they are also human beings just like you, who likes moderation.

“To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream. Not only plan, but also believe.” – Anatole France

Do you know Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohammad? Let me just give you a clue here. He is the 4th Prime Minister of Malaysia. I adore him very much because of his sharp tongue and mind. I adore him because of the way he treasured our beloved Malaysia with his assertiveness-professionalism-brainpower. I adore him because of the way he spread his words about Islam and the Muslims in a simple, direct and respectable manners especially to the westerners. To me, he is super intelligent.

He is the man who makes what Malaysia is today.

I wasn’t planning on writing anything specific in this entry, as I have no experience in writing something serious or something formal. I could not even think about the suitable things that I should write for this project though. So, I would like to apologize in advance and I really hope you enjoy my writing. 😉

06
May
08

MTV, Teenage Suicide, and a Girl from China

I was a wide-eyed impressionable youngster at the beginning of the MTV generation. A clicky little brown cable box would transport exotic sights and sounds to my buddy Danny’s house. My first experience with MTV and music videos was sitting in Danny’s den struggling to make sense of this new media music-pimping creation.

The neighborhood kids would congregate daily at Danny’s house and watch the newest offerings from RATT, Twisted Sister, and ZZ Top. Since my family was too poor (and Christian) to have MTV at our house, I would absorb my devil music indoctrination across the tracks. Years later, the Satanic music that Danny loved so much was a contributing cause to his teenage suicide.

Danny had a rough life. He had a short fuse and liked to torture animals to let off steam. He lived with his grandmother (who represented herself as his mother). She told Danny that his father was a lumberjack who died when a tree fell on him (in an act of Karmic forest retribution). His real mum actually lived next door to him, but Danny was told that she was his sister. She was a martial arts expert and was married to a muddle-headed Lou Ferrigno look-alike. It is complicated I know.

I suspect that his mom (pretend sister) became pregnant at an early age by a naughty fella with sweaty palms and an tingling rod of boy-meat. The maternal deception was created so the neighbors wouldn’t ostracize the family on moral or religious grounds. The Kingdom of Heaven is denied to those who satisfy their carnal urges at a young age, especially if the lusty endeavor produces a sin-child. Sadly, my pearly gate entry has been precluded due to sexual self-abuse. When I was 11, I throttled the one-eyed milkman on my parents bed will ogling Marsha Brady on the telly.

Like me, Danny had a bevy of teenage psychological problems. One of his favorite games was lining up large rocks on the railroad tracks behind his house in the hopes that the train would derail. Other times, we would meet at the designated train arrival time and try to take out the conductor with rocks. Of course, that was when we were both young and relatively innocent. I later graduated to high-level felony property damage, arson, and pellet gun sniping. Danny moved onto to devil worship, grave-robbing, and Russian roulette.

I did not have a lot of contact with Danny when he hit his mid-teens. He got involved in the heavy metal scene – donning trench coats and black boots (ala Colombine killers Klebold and Harris). At night he would rob graves for skulls and bones to decorate his room with. I was deeply entrenched in the skater culture and happily filled my days vandalizing curbs, benches, and hand-rails. Danny morphed into the silent brooding type jamming to Guns and Roses and Metallica endlessly.

Danny was sent off to boot camp by his grandmother to straighten him out. He was home for a visit and pleaded desperately not to be sent back. As a kid, Danny would have explosive outbursts and make threats about this or that, but would never follow through. He made good on his last one. Since his mum wouldn’t waver on shipping him back off, he sat on his bed and removed his head with a shotgun blast.

Back to MTV.

I vividly remember David Bowie’s video for “China Girl”. It was pretty heavy for 1983. Around that time, you had David lee Roth exhibiting his high-kick gyrations, Michael Jackson was leading zombie parades, and the Talking Heads were threatening Americans with domestic arson. The song stuck out a bit from the typical sex-drugs-rock and roll MTV blueprint. It was arty and sensual – concepts that I had not been exposed to.

China Girl was written with Iggy Pop during their West Berlin days in the late 70’s. The video was banned in many countries due to its adult themes and partial nudity. It garnered Bowie the title of Best Male Video at the 1984 Video Music Awards. As a kid, this video put me in a trance whenever it came on the tube. Bowie’s delivery is haunting.

Here is my favorite lyric from China Girl:

I stumble into town just like a sacred cow

Visions of swastikas in my head

Plans for everyone

It’s in the white of my eyes

17
Apr
08

Project: Human Barrier Deconstruction II

This installment of Human Barrier Deconstruction honors an extremely gifted writer/blogger named Veronica Romm. As a young girl, Veronica, and members of her family, left Russia for the United States.

This is from her About Me page:

I was born in St. Petersburg, Russia in 1973 and my family bravely immigrated to the states in 1979. We arrived in Brooklyn, Brighton Beach to be precise, with all the other Russian immigrants hungry for the American Dream. Unfortunately the Cold War was still in full swing and my arrival was met with some rather harsh tormenting and teasing. Good news, it made me a stronger kid and taught me very quickly the ways of the world. Perhaps because of this early experience I am always rooting for the underdog, and am sensitive to injustice in all areas.

Her blog is entitled Who knew, and comes highly recommended. Her depth of understanding and insight into the human experience initially captured my attention. Veronica was very supportive of Johnny Peepers in the shaky leg days of Dillsnap Cogitations. For that I am eternally grateful.

Below is her blog entry detailing her abandonment of the old life in exchange for the new.

Goodbye Leningrad

A little girl I am whisked away. All together, Mama, Papa and Babushka (grandma) board a plane to who knows where. We all land safely, on some ground. I ask “Is this where we are moving to?”

“No, dear not yet, this is where we wait.” I am told.

Wait? Alright then, it is a lovely place. Near the beach we stay with Senora Maria. They don’t speak my language here, I quickly realize. They speak Italian, we are in Lodispoli, somewhere south of Rome, Mama tells me. There are children there and they are friendly, we play outside, mostly on the beach and I learn “ciao” and many new words as I play each day. I understand them soon enough and they laugh when I say something funny in Italian but they help me and I learn.

Three months fly by and the wait is over, we must board another plane. Babushka is tired and somewhat ill; she seems scared as mama and papa explain that we have the “Visa’s” whatever those are, but they are happy so I know it must be a good thing. As the plane lands safely once again I ask “Is this where we are going to live?” Mama says yes while busy making sure our parcels are all there.

There are very few parcels, and I was only allowed to bring my favorite doll, just one. I left the rest behind with my best friend, Katya. She seemed happy but still cried that morning when we left. She knew we would not see each other again; she was older than I and much cleverer.

So there we are in a very busy airport once again, waiting. Suddenly I am whisked into the arms of a beautiful young girl. She hugs me as black tears rush down her face. Mama is confused but I know this girl, it is Marina my only cousin. Mama is shocked she has grown so much, a woman she is and they hug and cry. Bella and George my Totya (aunt) and Dadya (uncle) are there too. Everyone is crying, but not me, it’s too exciting with all the commotion.

I hold Babushkas hand as we walk through “JFK” and it is a long walk for her. She is tired, very tired and I want to leave this place with all the strange people speaking another language I don’t understand. Marina speaks it well and I laugh when I learn my first word, “OK”. Everything is “ok” as we get into the van with our parcels and everyone in the van together. Mama and Bella keep crying and laughing, they act strange and nervous but I am OK. We are on our way to our new house, it is May 10, 1979 and it is hotter than I have ever felt before.

11
Apr
08

Project: Human Barrier Deconstruction

In the interest of promoting universal human consciousness, and in recognition of our shared global traveler status, I intend to start a new project. Dillsnap Cogitations will be a forum for Individuals to write on topics related to their shared similarities with, or perceived differences from, their Earthly cohabitants.

My ultimate aim is to break down the mental barriers and artificial mental constructs that humans use to compartmentalize and divide each other. No formal request is necessary if you wish to contribute. I highly encourage any of my readers who wish to posit their thoughts for publication to notify me. My only request is that your words assist others in understanding who you are, and by extension, who we are.

The first kind soul to assist me with my project is Di. She is from South America and is the author of the blog My Life as an Alien. Her writings concerning the cultural differences between her native country and her new home attracted my attention. As a new American citizen, her perspective is illuminating to those, like me, who take our nation’s prosperity, rights, and privileges for granted. Here is her contribution to the the project.

Alien reflections

I come from a culture where there is no political correctness, I don’t really know if that is good or bad, but words don’t have as much power as here. A word can be good or bad depending on the intent and the way it is used. We call each other fat, short, tall, black, white, and it can be an insult as well as an affectionate nickname.

Sometimes I have trouble adjusting to this; I have to bite my tongue so that I do not offend anybody. Sometimes it is difficult to figure out what words I can use, since some words are acceptable for a group but not for others.

There is no racism, the color of someone skin doesn’t have the same meaning as here. Color is just more or less pigment, not race. There is however classism; people are judged by how much they have. There is also Machismo; it is a male oriented society, and there are places and/or instances where women are not treated fairly.

I had experienced discrimination for being a woman before, but here I have experienced racism and discrimination for being Latina, both from Caucasians and African Americans, but mostly from the later. I have learned from African Americans that the first thing on their identity is their race, and sometimes I feel they want it to be for me as well. Fortunately for me, I came here as an adult and that is a part of the culture I do not want to assimilate.

When people ask me ‘what are you’? I say ‘a woman’ (like that is not obvious) and when they ask what race I say ‘human’. Sorry, but I can’t buy the notion that we are different based on evolutionary adaptation.

There is not as much openness toward homosexuality and gender differences. I love that about the US, there is openness, not equality, but there is no legalized prosecution like in other countries. I believe people should be free to express themselves without fear.

The US has a higher standard of living than some other countries and that it is easier to achieve a better life here than in some other places.

I think that a large number of locals waste the opportunities they have here. I hate it when people complain and complain, about the country, the government, race, injustice, but do nothing about it. They don’t want to educate themselves or others, they don’t vote, they don’t try to change things; while at the same time, using and abusing the welfare system. (There are few people I know)

The US culture is monolinguistic and ethnocentric. I understand that English is a very important language and that the US is a very powerful nation, but it would not hurt to open your minds, ears and hearts to what is happening elsewhere.

My country has an official Language, Spanish, but you hear different languages spoken on the street and nobody cares. I have encounter people’s stares and dismissive comments when I speak Spanish, assumptions that I don’t speak English or that I am talking about them. I have talked to people from different countries and they all tell me, why do people assume that we are talking about them? If you where in China and you ran into an English speaker, what language would you speak? (food for thought)

There is a lot of infrastructure for people to visit and enjoy the vast geography of the US. Wherever I visit I can find a road that takes me there, services (such as bathrooms and food), good maps, and all kinds of facilities to make it easier for people to get to know the country. Where I come from there are a lot of places to visit, but you have to have the means to get there and it is a true adventure to find the places you are looking for, unless you have a guide or get really good instructions from the locals.

Government, police and other official institutions seem to work well in the US. I know some of you might not agree, but I do not think the US has the level of corruption that my country has. I think here there is a system of checks and balances, sometimes they might not check, but I think that the system here works a lot better.

Like in anyplace you are bound to find nice people and not so nice people. I have been very fortunate to have met wonderful people that had taught me about the cultural nuances and their openness has helped me open my mind a little more. I have also met people that had taught me what it feels like to be discriminated against, because I don’t have the right skin color or the right accent. To me these are both learning and enriching experiences, although being discriminated against due to my background is not my preference it has taught me about tolerance, compassion and ignorance.

I am preparing a post about funny things that have happened to me and other Alien friends adjusting to the cultural as well as language nuances, you might want to check back in a few days…




Johnny Peepers

----> is a socio-pathetic degenerate with a penchant for cheap booze, ruphy-laden broads, and dim sum soup.

a

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