AXJ66
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    • AXJ66

      In our early 20s, my wife and I went whitewater rafting and camping in West Virginia with some of our friends. Back in college my buddies and I had done this as a ‘guys weekend’ twice and this time the girls wanted to be included. First, early on during the whitewater part of the trip, the raft flipped at the top of a class V rapid, spilling us all into a recirculating hydraulic which had us trapped underwater, violently banging up against rocks and each other for a good 20 seconds at least. We all emerged bruised, bleeding, and terrified. I had lost a shoe and had a big gash in one leg

    • AXJ66

      Chef, with Jon Favreau. I recommend this to friends all the time and nobody seems to have even heard of it, but once they watch it they love it too. It’s got a ridiculous all-star cast (John Leguizamo, Scarlett Johnansson, Dustin Hoffman, Sofia Vergara, Oliver Platt, and Robert Downey Jr), lots of great laughs, a heartwarming plot, and a million great scenes of food that will make you want to cook some amazing food.

    • AXJ66

      In 9th grade I had a crush on this athletic, tomboyish girl at my school, so I recruited a mutual friend to find out if she would be interested in me. She sent back a question: “Are you straight?” I was puzzled but replied that I was. Afterwards she avoided me like crazy. I had no idea what happened until years later, after she publically came out as a lesbian, and explained that she thought I was a gay guy looking for a ‘beard’ (fake girlfriend) and could tell she was a lesbian.

    • AXJ66

      I do some coaching of high school students and I find number one a bit off… there are some kids who legitimately do make a conscious effort to make smart, well informed decisions, and many kids of the same age who are just as reckless and naïve as you’d expect of their age. I think the kids who make an effort to live maturely deserve some recognition. I’d also disagree with number six, a lot of misery can come from that kind of thinking. Sure, a few people will score a lucky break, but pretty much all of the people I graduated with who did what they were really passionate about (things like theater or art or philosophy) are mostly working two jobs waiting tables or the like now, not doing what they love. They don’t even have enough time, energy, or money left over to do what they love as a hobby. So I advise kids to always sanity check those dream plans against what fields are actually hiring, and with what you can expect to actually earn a living off of. That sucks, I know, but will save you many decades of unhappy living.

    • AXJ66

      He’s kind of rude about it, in that normal conservative way, but I’d say it’s not illogical to make getting public assistance contingent on trying to improve your position in life, or at least not make it worse.  If your brother-in-law came around and asked you to give him $500 so he wouldn’t get evicted, and you later found out he upgraded to a cable package that you can’t even afford yourself, wouldn’t you be ticked? Wouldn’t that affect whether or not you gave him anything the next time he came around asking for “help”?

    • AXJ66

      re 13, in rape discussions, feminists often object to people saying things like, “you should take commonsense precautions to personal safety in much the same way you wouldn’t leave your car door unlocked or your wallet unattended”. They say you can’t compare property crime with a deeply personal crime like rape, and that you should focus on educating men to not rape rather than educating women to avoid being raped. For what it’s worth, I agree that getting raped is far more devestating than getting your wallet or car stolen, but the real crux of the comparison is that - you’re never going to “educate” criminally minded people into doing the right thing. No matter how hard you try, no matter how tough you get on crime, some people are always going to take what they want without regards to who they hurt, regardless of their risk of going to prison. Some men hate women so deeply that they pretty much just live to hurt them. There’s no educating those guys. (And I’m not just talking about back-alley rapists.) And so, while it’s absolutely necessary to teach people of all genders about how consent works and the importance of positively obtaining it, it’s also important to teach people about how to watch out for those who won’t be educated, and how to avoid the traps they set.

    • AXJ66

      My parents to me when I was probably about 14 or 15 and not performing as well in school as I should have been: “As soon as you’re no longer in school or you get married, you’re on your own; you can’t live here anymore and we won’t support you. Better start arranging things now to build the kind of life you want.”  This really helped me appreciate the gravity of my choices, and drove me to plan more carefully and work harder than I probably would have otherwise.

    • AXJ66

      I don’t think anyone is really fighting over what the movement should call itself, it’s more that we’re fighting over whether we want to be included in a group which seems to have absorbed quite a lot of extremist elements and don’t seem very interested in expelling them or denouncing their teachings. Let’s reframe: If I were in a contra dancing group, and suddenly a bunch of white supremacists joined, I might choose to leave the group and form a new group with a different name, so as to avoid association with white supremacists… or I might loudly and strongly denounce the supremacists and fight hard to get them out of my group. But the one thing you can’t do is say, “well, I don’t agree with those guys, but there’s plenty of room under this tent for everyone, so…” As long as feminism is tolerant of people who “keep a bottle of male tears chilled at all times” it’s going to have perception problems that will limit how wide and quickly the message can spread.

    • AXJ66

      In college my freshman year roommate was decent- quirky but decent- and at the end of the year he asked if I wanted to move off-campus with him and another guy we knew. I told him that I was trying to get an internship for the fall semester, so probably not. “Oh, that’s no problem. You’re just a freshman so you won’t be able to get one, but if you do, I’ll be able to find someone to fill in.” So, given that reassurance, I agreed. When I got an offer for an internship I let him know right away. “No problem!” he said. Well as it turns out, he couldn’t find anyone to fill in, so he and the other guy had to pay extra. To save face, he told the other guy that I just no-showed and refused to pay my part of the rent. The other guy was very mad, and the two of them apparently told that story to EVERYONE THEY KNEW, which included quite a lot of my friends. When I showed up in the spring, he acted like nothing had happened. “We’ve got a room for you if you need it!” After the first day or two I started wondering why all of my old friends were treating me a bit coldly. Finally, MONTHS later, the other roommate got a little drunk and confronted me about it. Took a while to get around and explain what happened to everyone, and not quite everyone believed me. Ugh.

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