Ryan R.

March 1999

First off, I would like to thank everyone for emailing me, I muchly appreciate it. Last month I basically rambled on about Caleb, this month will be a bunch of rambling also, but not only about Caleb...

I just returned from school today, a pretty good day overall. In the past year I've changed my ways, I'm much more outgoing, more sociable, and I care little about what people think of me. Today, in last hour we had to pair up, I paired with Caleb, then five minutes later we had to quad our pairs together, so we got stuck with Jesse, a friend, and a girl named Teresa. Now, Teresa and I had had problems in the past, the first time I had talked to her was in this class, but in casual conversation we had pissed each other off. I think today was one of the best things that could have happened as far as that is concerned. We got together, and started work on our project, now I am much, much more known to start up a conversation rather than focus on any work at hand. Apparently, Teresa was too (Jesse and Caleb I already knew were. So we got nothing done, at all, instead we had a great, meaningful conversation, basing itself on religion.

I myself, am Atheist, Teresa is a devoted Christian, Jesse couldn't care less, and Caleb is something of a Satanist (he prefers Satan over God, not really a true satanist, he doesn't worship him or anything). We talked about afterlife, reincarnation, creation, evolution, the big bang, etc etc. I'm more and more realizing that opposites get along much better than say someone who is much like another. Disagreement is grounds for conversation, conversation leads to other things. So Teresa and I talked about religion, and expressed her disagreement with my beliefs and I hers. But neither one of us was offensive to each other, though I did say "Jesus Christ" a few times in exclamation, which really got to her, but I immediately apologized to her and told her that I try not to offend people whom I care about. She said she was glad that she cared about her feelings.

You've seen people argue, we did not, we conversed, even swayed opinion a bit, I do not argue, I converse and listen. A prime example, well the only one I can think of from the conversation; I say "Jesus Christ" she says, "why is it that you don't say 'Buddha damnit' or something like this?" (I'm not sure exactly what she said, but 'Buddha damnit' is as close as I can remember). I tell her that "Jesus Christ" has worked its way into our society as an exclamation like this, to my amazement she nodded her head and said, "yeah, I think you're right there" At this point I was much happy, a real conversationalist, someone who doesn't only talk, but also listens.

From there our conversation branched out to everything from Emus, to Pirates, to homosexuals, to other religions, etc. I put forth my main view on religions, which is "I don't mind any of them, just don't even think about pushing it on me." Teresa's response; "exactly!" She says, I disagree with your beliefs, but have no problem with you, just so long as you don't try to infringe on mine. and I say "Exactly!!"

That was my excitement for the day, and ye gods, it was hella exciting, I love conversations with depth and intelligence and listeners, I get muchly caught up in them, I get excited and thrilled. Jesse and Caleb basically listened, and threw in comments every now in then, but it was Teresa and I. All I can say is, wow, this is great, And I recommend trying to get someone to open up with whom you've some animosity, it can be a great thing!

Moving on...

I got to talking last night with a friend in West Virginia, and I said to him "I'm kind of surprised how little I care about people verbally bashing gays" I said this because in class Caleb called someone else a faggot, in the way that most straight guys say it to another straight guy, just insulting, not implying or meaning anything by it. It kinda got to me, but I knew it was a random, and very much everyday comment. But then I listened the next day, wow, I really don't hear it, anything bad is "gay" and anyone doing anything wrong is a "faggot" It still didn't bother me, hearing it around every corner. It just doesn't bother me. My friends who know about me sometimes go "hey fag" or "hey flamer" I just laugh, it's funny, because they are saying it purely jokingly, they mean nothing by it, they are my good friends.

So, he tells me "faggot is just as bad as nigger" I'm like, "I say nigger sometimes, jokingly like people call me faggot" Well he didn't much care for this, was a bit miffed, and we stopped talking. He said he would rage if anyone said it, I'm like, everyone says it, I *might* rage if they said it directly to me and meant it strictly in a negative way, otherwise, don't much care. Maybe things are different on the other side of the country, but here, faggot, queer, gay, these are "every-other-word words" They do not bother me, I'm fine with people saying them, just don't care, some people do, apparently!

He told me maybe I was a bit loose with my speech, not taking time to think about what I say, and maybe offending someone that I do not know I am offending. I thought, maybe, but really my changed lifestyle of "not caring" has gotten me far, I'm a much better person and generally much happier and friendly, and people like me a lot more now...I used to be very shy.

Now, about Caleb saying 'faggot' it did bother me a bit, not offensive or anything, its just, mostly something only a straight guy would say, kind of crushed any hope, but I remembered that there was a period in my life where I was somewhat homophobic, probably about the "realization" stage, I'm sure this has happened to someone else. And people I talk to, agree that Caleb probably is, but doesn't know it yet, I don't know, I'd have to say yes, but just from subtle clues, I'm much more observant than most people.

Just one more thing, this is not relevant at all to anything mentioned above, but something I want to write about. In first hour, there is a guy that sits next to me, in the back row, and nobody else can see it but me, and it's really obvious to me, no effort to hide it, but everyday in class he masturbates in his pants. Don't get me wrong, I'm not even starting to complain! But I just wanted to say, good God, some people are brave, there is no way I would even think of doing that at school, let alone IN CLASS. Call me a pervert, but I sit there and watch it the whole time, and its a bit uncomfortable for me, ya know. By the way, there is nothing wrong with being a pervert!!!

I guess I shall sign off, I wrote enough. Feels great to get this out, even though it is nothing important, just stuff...

Please email me, it is good.

RyanR, ya_busta@hotmail.com

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