Monday, July 30, 2007

UPS Caves In

UPS has agreed to Governor Jon Corzine's request and will grant health benefits to NJ Civil Union same-sex couples. UPS stated that after receiving clear guidance from NJ, which recognizes same-sex couples joined in Civil Union equal to married couples, it will offer health care benefits to all its employees. Back on July 20th, Governor Corzine sent a letter to UPS requesting it grant all same-sex Civil Union couples this benefit, but UPS held it was contractual agreement with the Teamsters Union that prevented health benefits from anyone other than "married" couples.

This is still just the beginning of the same-sex marriage issue in NJ. Most couples joined in Civil Union are still not receiving the same benefits as married couples, per the NJ Supreme Court's wishes.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Jose Kicked My Ass

That's right: Jose kicked my ass! Jose Cuervo, that is! Went to my friend, Pax's last night to celebrate his birtday, and I had to resort back to my sophmoric college days!! (The reality is I never even did this in college). After having a couple glasses of wine, somewhere inbetween that and a beer, I ended up doing four shots of Jose Cuervo! Needless to say, I was feeling pretty good. My friend, who went with me to the party, and I left Pax's, and I must say my driving was excellent; slowed down appropriately when a policeman ended up behind us, and I did not even suddenly make a U-turn in the middle of the road when I missed a right hand turn I was supposed to take. On the ride home, my friend stated that he stays away from tequila because it gives him a killer headache. "That's because you're not a real man, and I am," I replied.

Well, this morning I realized what my friend was talking about. (I occasionally drink tequila in a cocktail or on the rocks, but, as I stated before about not doing something in college, I have never just drank shots of tequila). I woke up around 7:30AM this morning with a so-so headache. I stood up to make my way to the bathroom and I was leaning to the right as I walked! As I stood in the bathroom, my stomach started doing the "heave-hoe" dance. I waiting, expecting to loose all that was still therein, but didn't, so I made it back to bed and slept a couple more hours. Then I woke again, yearning a cup of coffee and something to eat, thinking I was probably hungry and eating would help. I walked to the kitchen, head pounding, and leaning to the left this time. I made 2 pieces of toast with a little jam and a cup of java. I ate about 2 bites of the toast before the "heave-hoe" dance started again. I tried to eat as much of the toast as I could, finishing about half a piece and downing about half the cup of coffee. I also managed to take 2 motrin, and back to bed I went. I woke again around 11:30AM. And this time, all was well! I ate a small bowl of cereal and went about my day!

Never again! Until the next time that is!!!! I remember those days on occasional when I was younger. The feeling of the room spinning and the stomach upping everything it could, then even what felt like the stomach lining! Gotta be the worst feeling in the world!

But thanks, Pax! I had a great time despite this morning. There were alot of laughs and joking going on amongst friends. It truly was what a birthday celebration is all about!

Friday, July 13, 2007

A Victory Over Local Discrimination

It was reported today by The Press of Atlantic City that Millville Police Chief Ron Harvey announced his retirement on Thursday. The 55 year old chief was among three Millville Police officers, Sgt. Michael Harvey, Chief Harvey's son, and lieutenants Edward Zadroga and Thomas Rominishin, currently under investigation for alleged discrimination against fellow officer Robert Colle, who is gay. Although the specific allegations have not yet been made public, Colle believes he has been mistreated simply for being gay. In June, the officers named in the discrimination allegations filed a petition in court to not be subject to disciplinary action because of the mistreatment of Colle. This hearing goes to court in the fall. Chief Harvey has been on medical leave and was scheduled to return to work July 30th. He has now said, in the midst of the discrimination investigation, that he will not be returning to the force.

Although I do not know Colle very well, I have had the opportunity to meet him. I want to applaud Bob for not allowing the Millville Police Department to treat him or any other gay individual, in a disrespectful manner. Millville is a small town that still has alot to learn about treating people fairly.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Do Your Part

Did you answer the call? I am talking about the call from Live Earth to make your pledge to answer the SOS to help save our earth. I watched much of the entertainment and info yesterday. It was on 3 channels for awhile, and I was switching between them to watch what I liked. The rap crap as I call it, had to go. And when 2 of the channels had Kelly Clarkson and Madonna on at the same time, I had to tip my hat to Diva, Madonna. Sorry Kelly, I like you, but Madonna is still just a bit better in my humble opinion.

In addition to suggestions given during yesterday's broadcast, I have come up with some idea of my own to save our planet:

1. Instead of just waiting until I have a full load of clothes to wash, I will do one better and not
wash my clothes until after I have worn them 3 times or more; my bedsheets will not be
washed for at least 1 month;
2. I will reuse all my toilet paper;
3. I will take my used napkins and lie them out to dry, then reuse them a 2nd, maybe even a
3rd time;
4. I will only get the newspaper every other day because the news isn't worth reading anyway;
5. I will wait until my trash can is about to overflow before compacting it and taking it to the

Honestly, I have made my pledge to do my part. I have changed some lightbulbs already with the more energy efficient ones. I vow to change more. I will honestly do only full loads of wash, and use only papertowels that are recylced. I will try to eat less meat, saving grain used to feed the animals we eat. (Sorry, I cannot go vegetarian as I like my meat too much). And when I get ready to purchase my new car in 6 months to a year, I will seriously look at the Toyota Prius. In addition, I will try to use less heat/ac.

Will you do your part as well?

Friday, July 06, 2007

No Blood Donation

Today at work, someone walked by a group of three or four of us and said the blood donation mobile was out in the parking lot if anyone wanted to give blood. I commented that I cannot give blood. One of my coworkers said, "Get out," another said, "You'll pass out," and another said, "You're just scared." I further stated, "No, I'm serious. I cannot give blood." Now my lifestyle is no secret at work; most, if not all of my collegues, know I'm gay. Finally one woman asked me, "Why can't you give blood?" I said, "because I'm gay and they won't take a gay person's blood." Her response was, "You gotta be kidding me! In this day and age?!"

Yes, it's true! The American Red Cross will not allow a gay person, well actually, "if you are a man and have had sex with another man, even once." to donate blood. Even in the year 2007, gay men are excluded from donating blood. The Red Cross checks blood after it's been collected, and if not able to be used due to infection, discards that blood. Even so, a gay man cannot donate. Even during a catostrophic incident, such as Katrina, when blood is desperately needed, the Red Cross will not take the blood of a gay man.

Discrimination? Perhaps. Can't a woman be HIV+? How many men lie about not having any sexual encounter with another man? Maybe it's time the Red Cross move into the 21st century and change its policy.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Proud To Be An American? YES, But......

Yesterday I saw a bumper sticker on the back of a pickup truck that read, "IF YOU CAN READ THIS, THANK A TEACHER; IF YOU CAN READ THIS IN ENGLISH, THANK A VETERAN." My first thought was what would be so bad if I was reading that in another language besides English? And wasn't' it some European who developed English, not the Americans? So what does me being able to read the bumper sticker in English have anything whatsoever to do with anything. Was the bumper sticker insinuating that I have all the liberties afforded Americans, one of which is to read English, because of the sacrifice of a Vet? Or did it mean a US Vet brought English over to America sometime ago? But it couldn't be that because the British I believe, brought over English. And it certainly were Vets that fought the British to gain our Independence, but the British still speak English today, so what's that got to do with America? Or, could it just be the arrogance that Americans have thinking we are the only worthwhile country in the world that speaks English? Ahhhhh............I think I have my answer.

This Fourth of July 2007, US Independence Day, I will state vehemently, "I AM PROUD TO BE AN AMERICAN!" I love my country and the freedoms I have here. I can freely write what I write here without fear of being arrested. I can bash my president, the imbecile that he is, without fear of the gestapo rushing into my door. But there are many freedoms, which I have discussed in other texts, that I do not yet have. But as a proud American, I also realize that I am not better than anyone in any other nation! I am not so arrogant to believe my way of life is the best necessarily.

Americans are really fed a lot of good old fashioned HOGWASH! Instead of being taught as children that we are part of the world community, we are told time and time again that America is the only way of life, that Americans are somehow better than anyone else in the world, and that if you do not live as America says you should, you are somehow less a person. I often wonder if other children in other nations are taught to be so adamant about just how good they are. Well, I know the Soviet Russian kids were, and of course, the Nazi youth were! MMMMM.......are we as Americans no better than Soviet Russia or Nazi Germany? Why, yes, of course we are.....because we're Americans! That makes propaganda and brainwashing OK then.

PROUD TO BE AN AMERICAN???? YES. But also proud to be part of this great big old world! Proud to admit that I am no better than anyone else, maybe just luckier because I happen by chance to have been born into a free society. So......should I thank a Vet, or should I just thank God, or Fate, or Karma, or whatever it was that put me here?