That was a beautiful read, thank you for sharing
Le plaisir était pour moi.
I’m actually taking a psychology class and we learned that punishment isn’t even the best way to teach anyway!!! It breeds resentment more than actually teaching someone something- instead you’re supposed to reinforce the behavior you want either by negative/positive reinforcement [i.e.- taking away chores for negative reinforcement/giving cookies for positive. turns out negative reinforcement isn’t just another term for punishments!!! Very interesting stuff.]
I could have told humanity that about four hundred years ago, but no one bothered to ask me. All too busy crossing themselves and running away.
I mean, to be fair, i might have eaten them, so it makes a kind of sense. Just would have been nice to have been asked.
Your answer about grief made me wonder: do you not experience sadness like humans do? Don’t you miss people when they are gone? Obviously not ALL people because you seem really solitary, but like Chef, if he died would you mourn him?
Of course, I miss them. But do recall, I’ve not made close human friends until quite recently. Before that I had people I dealt with who didn’t ask questions, and that was about it. I have been solitary most of my existence which is, I admit, rather lengthy. I cannot feel what you do. I have a different perspective and I know that for every one I lose, I gain another in some future moment. I grieve differently. That’s simply the truth.
See my website. Search for a story called “Cream cheese potatoes, a Eulogy”. When you’ve finished reading it, I want you to imagine that happening again and again, for centuries. It is numbing and the pain becomes somewhat cold.
I loathe death and I will do my utmost to destroy it, so long as there is life in me, and so when I confront loss, I have to be both accepting of it and vexed by it simultaneously. Otherwise I cannot balance as I must to achieve my goals.
I feel every bit of it, I assure you. I can however, stop wallowing in it at will. The skill of the aged. Not an enviable one, I can assure you.
Hi Simon, I’ve got a question about grief, if that’s okay. Since you’ve lived for so long, I imagine you’ve lost a lot of family or friends. What have you found to be the most helpful thing for processing grief?
I don’t have family and I’ve never had friends. People die around me, but generally it earns a nod and a “well that was bound to happen”. I’m old. I’ve done this before and it is a numbing thing.
I can only advise that you allow yourself to feel what you’re going to and in your own time, that you adhere to no “standards” of grieving and tell everyone to piss off. I also advise that you retain hold of what that person stood for and what they would want of you, and focus on that. Best way to honor them.
“If I Didn’t See You Then You Didn’t Do It”
If you’ve ever wondered what having parents is like Simon, this is pretty relatable to most people I know. 😂 At least my folks are like this.
It’s amusing, but also disgusting. If that’s how your parents behave they ought to be ashamed of themselves. Their job isn’t to fight with you as if you’re a tenacious man-eating creeper vine. It’s to give you a framework to climb up so that you can flower. I find behavior of this type reprehensible. Makes me worry about your species.
No one should treat you this way. Even if you’re children. That’s not how discipline is taught. That’s how fear is taught.
100% agree with you there, and that’s what I say all the damn time to folks who can truly relate to this. That being said, sometimes you need to laugh at crap that gets thrown at you before you can say, “I’m not doing that to anyone else.”
Indeed. What I find disgusting are the people who revel in this type of “parenting” and turn around and do precisely the same Hong to their child rather than innovate.
The things I’ve seen in my time, modern humans wouldn’t believe, but the rise of the rights of children is one of your finer achievements, I dare say.
Agreed, although we need to keep working in that area a hell of a lot. I get very, very angry in particular w/ people who argue that physical discipline is appropriate for any reason, and I’m hoping to see that end completely in my lifetime. I remember explaining why it’s wrong to one “friend,” like this:
If you break your sink, your landlord is not allowed to slap you. If you’re late to work, your boss can’t put you over their knee. If you put something in your pocket at the store by mistake, security is not allowed to hit you until they think you’ve learned your lesson. They’re not even allowed to do that if it’s on purpose. If you have a bad day and get angry or frustrated while clothes shopping, the staff are not allowed to tell you that they’re picking out a belt to beat you with in the bathroom, and then carry out the threat because that made you freak out. Not even a hairdresser is allowed to smack you with a brush because you’re tender headed and they’re not being gentle. All these things that adults aren’t allowed to do to other adults, so why does a child’s personhood only start to really matter when they’re old enough to hit back? It’s still assault, no matter how much you try to justify it.
This particular dumbass almost got a practical lesson on why we outlaw physical violence firsthand though by saying it’s self defense when they start flailing. Their kid, mind you, was 3. If you can’t handle a fucking preschooler without violence, then you have no goddamn business having children.
It’s really very simple:
Would you, as an adult, tolerate your boss or a coworker hitting you to teach you how to do your job? No. Would you tolerate being assaulted in public? No. Would you allow someone else to hit your child? No.
So why and in what way, does correcting behavior with physical punishment make any damn sense? This is an child who has no understanding of what any of that means. They have no idea why it’s being done. All they know is that they are now afraid of the person who is supposed to care for them.
All that does is remove the idea of bodily autonomy and accountability. It removes the exact thing it was meant to instill. How? Because they will internalize all future assaults or physical infractions in a guilty or questioning way “Did I deserve this” and it will make them less likely to stand up to bullying or violence. It will also dramatically increase the likelihood of violence in their future. Almost every single serial killer we’ve documented has a history of physical assault from their parents. Most people in prison were hit by their parents. It does not prevent negative actions. It in fact makes a child see that as a viable strategy for solving confusing and seemingly complex emotional situations. “I did it because I was mad” is a phrase often heard in confessions.
Where does that come from?
It comes from parents with no impulse control who take their frustrations out on children who have absolutely no clue what any of the beatings mean. All they know is that it hurts and that they are afraid of that one person who is the source of all their protection. What a magnificently fucked up lesson to teach a child. If you as a parent, require that of a child, then you’re not only terrible at being a parent, you’re a disgusting excuse for a human being.
146 years ago today Susan B. Anthony was arrested for attempting to vote. She died before she was able to cast her ballot legally.
Don’t disrespect her memory on November 8th.
146 years ago susan b anthony wouldn’t let ida b wells and other black sufagettes march with her unless she went at the back because she valued racist southern women’s opinions over genuinely amazing suffragettes who risked their lives when they could be arrested WITH NO CAUSE. back then a black woman could be arrested for sex work by talking to a man who was not related to her, black suffragettes who looked at a man the wrong way would be arrested.
disrespect the memory of susan b anthony, she fucking sucks.
Unlike Susan B Anthony, Ida B Wells did not die before female suffrage was passed. But she did die 35 years before she could vote as a black person. She had to watch for the last ten years of her life as white women got what she had fought so hard for while she was still denied it.
It will disrespect her legacy of anti-racist and anti-misogynistic campaigning by letting a fascist, racist, woman hater to not only beat the first female candidate for President but worse still undo all the work of America’s first black President.
Honour Ida on November 8th.
I love the turn out of this post.
Every time you reblog this, a white feminism upholder loses their wings.
Important to remember that the experience of femininity and misogyny is quite different for people who are confined by society in oppressive social classes.
If you’re a feminist, you’re a feminist for all women. Which means you must make sure that different experiences of Misogyny, or of economic or racial suppression and oppression is spoken about and forced into the light of day.
WOC had by far the most dangerous and heartbreakingly stunning climb, and while white women enjoy the privilege their race affords them, WOC are still pioneering because of their ongoing struggle.
Fight for all. Or shut up.
Well if it’s a more elaborate question you want, then I can give you what you ask. But be careful what you wish for. Over the years I’m sure you’ve had your fair share of experiences so my question to you is what was the weirdest encounter you’ve had with a human, and at what year did the encounter occur?
I’ve had my fair share. Recall that I’ve only been able to seamlessly blend into human culture since the advent of good quality cosmetics. Before that, my general pallor and distinguishing features set me apart. To prevent people from seeing my teeth, I often didn’t speak, which led people to think me a mute, and therefore meant I was often treated badly. Shoved to the fringes of society, as it were. I’ve spent most of my life interacting with odd characters.
So I suppose I’ll need a bit of clarification from you given the embarrassment of riches I possess. Do you mean an encounter that was odd because the person was simply strange? Or do you mean an encounter that put me in fear? Or an encounter that had an otherworldly type of substance to it?
I was witness to the Dancing Plague, please understand, so the oddities I’ve seen are rather extensive and I’ve healthy supplies in all the above categories.
I left it to interpretation. However, you so wish confirmation, I guess do share one that a person was odd or “weirded out” by you
Most of those encounters end badly, I’m afraid.
I can recall an encounter in Le Havre, I believe around the 1540′s. Would have been right after the Reformation, because it was a Catholic who I think had just come from England owing to the fact he didn’t speak French very well at all. I mean I’m sure he spoke it in what he and his considered a lovely accent, but to an ear accustomed to true French it sounded like he was trying to gargle.
At the time, the town was a bit of a terrible place to be. It was still being built and the sea ports were being improved (what brought me there, as I often did such types of work owing to my strength and the ways such work was contracted). Much of the land area along the water wasn’t precisely beach so much as mushy mire, and the entire area had the sort of drab, murky, ugly quality to it that immediately made most of the English Catholics mourn their exodus.
This particular bloke had been at the drink for a few days–to me it seemed he’d gone off hoofed animals in the Papist way, but eschewed fish for the protein in beer. I had just eaten, which is to say I was head to toe covered in the gore of some poor sap who bled as if he were a hemophiliac. Now, I will grant you that eating has a rather transformative effect on my general aspect, and yes, I was covered in blood, and yes, the man was so inebriated he might as well have been the personification of yeast, but his reaction struck me as utterly bizarre to the point of confusion. The image of it has never left my mind in all these years.
I’ll preface by saying that at this time in my life, I was going through one of my quartoseptcentennial fits of spleen, in that I was angry at the world and generally disgusted with all things human. I was not a terribly nice person in this particular state of mind, and I admit that I have a mean streak when this occurs.
So, at the time, there was one area of the harbor that was deep, but the constant trouble was that the tidal sands kept sweeping in and filling up the water. This meant that it was common practice for the larger trade ships on their way inland to moor off the harbor and the men to bring the smaller boats in. It was seasonal and drove the captains mad, but it had to be done. This meant that the river was clogged with masted vessels at anchor, but the waterside itself was nothing but a sea of tiny vessels.
I had killed my man beneath one of the few built up piers, as it was a very shielded location. The tidal sands had made the space beneath into something of a narrow crevasse or cave. It was dark, a bit foggy, and I dragged him in for a bit of a feast, intending to cut him up and harvest a bit more later. I emerged from my hiding place and was walking along the water away from the main part of the city.
I met the drunken Englishman going the other way. I’ve no idea what he’d been up to or where, since there wasn’t much in the area but a few homesteads with stables. I only know that he was singing and carrying on in bad French, waving his arms and drinking out of a clay jug.
I thought to myself, I admit, “This will be an easy meal. I can stow him with the other and come back with an oil sack.” This apprehension on my part likely did a few things to my features that were, upon hindsight, rather horrifying, but honestly, this man still had a response that was absurd.
He got about fifteen feet from me, seemed as if he was going to lean over and sing in my face, which would have been an excellent idea, as he would very swiftly have been silenced, much to the contentment of those few within earshot, but he stopped dead in his tracks. By that, of course, i mean that he wobbled slightly as if listing in the wind, but he was stiller than he had been. I too stood still, wondering what he was about to do. If he’d screamed, it might have been bad, and so I waited.
He began, as honestly many did, with a paternoster, but rather than to end it with the characteristic Amen, he just stood there and screamed. Muttered prayer under his breath, then full voiced, constant screaming.
I looked around a bit (not with my eyes, but with my other senses) and ascertained we were not being given an attention. Likely they thought he was a drunk who had decided to go from singing to screaming. The trouble with that was, I couldn’t abruptly stop him from screaming, because if I did that, then people would certainly be worried and perhaps investigate. So we stood there, while he literally stood screaming.
He ran out of air. Inhaled. Kept screaming. After a few repetitions of this, I think I dropped my chin to ask him to please, for the love of Saint Michael, stop, but that meant he saw my teeth.
And that was the line, apparently. The man turned at a right angle, and with a kind of grace I would have thought completely impossible given his distance from sobriety, ran in a straight line toward the water. But he didn’t stop at it. He kept running. He ran into a boat. Off the end of the boat, through the shallows, into another boat, across that, and on, until he hit the last of the shallow water and dropped right off the end into the wide water.
I watched him flail and continue to scream for some time. Then of a sudden, he vanished.
I presume he drowned. I can’t be sure. He may have been hiding beneath a boat waiting for me to leave. As a monster, I’ve been screamed at my fair share, but this was odd, I assure you. In later centuries, I would reflect that it looked very cartoonish in quality.
It certainly made me shrug and chuckle a bit.
I feel almost jealous that you can be so open about what you are.
It’s taken me damn near 700 years and a progressively disgusted attitude. Zero fucks. Negative fucks given. I have no choice, and really, humanity has made it easy. So here I am, measuring the feedback.