Am I a Masochist?

I’m really starting to wonder…

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Me

Masochist:

noun
1. Psychiatry. a person who has masochism, the condition in which sexual or other gratification depends on one’s suffering physical pain or humiliation.
2. a person who is gratified by pain, degradation, etc., that is self-imposed or imposed by others.
3. a person who finds pleasure in self-denial, submissiveness, etc.

I’m asking myself this because of a series of events that happened today.

Sometime during the morning, around 8 o’clock, I made a playlist. I copied the lineup of the Overdose Awareness Vigil and put it into my phone.

Here’s the playlist prior to the vigil starting:

Katy Perry – Unconditionally
Susan Boyle – Wild Horses
Lukas Graham – 7 Years
Ruth B. – Lost Boy
Israel Kamakawiwo’ole – Somewhere Over the Rainbow
Adele – Remedy
Katy Perry – Rise
Mariah Carey & Boyz II Men – One Sweet Day
Pink Floyd – Wish You Were Here
Wiz Kalifa – See You Again
Janet Jackson – Together Again
Dani & Lizzy – Dancing in the Sky
Everything But the Girl – We Walk the Same Line
Daughtry – Home
Puff Daddy & Faith Evans – I’ll Be Missing You
Michael Jackson – You Are Not Alone
Idina Menzel – Let It Go
Demi Lovato – Stone Cold
Tenth Avenue North – Worn
Prince & The Revolution – Purple Rain

I’m pretty sure it was Boyz II Men that got the tears going and Wiz Kalifa that kept them flowing. Puff Daddy proved instrumental (pun not really intended, but whateves…) in the transition from crying to sobbing to screaming. I grounded myself to the car until I could pull myself together.

At least I could take a small amount of solace around this thought:

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In case there is anyone out there who STILL DOESN’T KNOW, I HATE the Beatles.

I hate the news too.

That evening, I started talking to people about the Jacob Wetterling case and how awful it is that Danny James Heinrich will not face murder charges. I know the family signed off on it. I probably would’ve too, if it meant getting answers I’d waited 27 years for. I think… and I think about what I would’ve done in Patty’s position. Why? I’m grateful to not have to be in that situation, why do I keep trying to imagine what it’d be like on that side of Hell?

And I over schedule myself. A lot. Tomorrow morning I’m expected at a Recovery Breakfast at 7:30. Like a.m. As in the morning. Couldn’t we have a brunch instead? It’s not even so much the hour but having to fight traffic to top of the earliness. I need to get going on that invention idea for a horn that honks at the people behind you and also has an extendable middle finger to salute any deserving drivers…

Implement Evil Idea and watch the look on my face.

I also told someone I’d drop off needles for the exchange program. In Brooklyn Park. It’s a bit of a hike.

I have therapy on Thursdays too.

Fridays are my writing group.

Mondays are open mic night at Acme, after I work.

Tuesdays I usually work and then have group.

Wednesdays are my volunteer day

And then it’s back to Thursday.

I don’t HAVE to be this busy. Like I said, I think I may be a masochist…

therapy

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The Day the Laughter Died

Yesterday I read a Facebook post from a comedian I respect. His name is Ben Katzner and among other shows I’m sure, he hosts an open mic night (with fellow comedian Mike Lester on Wednesday nights at Dulono’s Pizza in Minneapolis- check them out!). He presented his dilemma of is it ok to be laughing and making jokes when there is so much tragedy going on in our world right now. He linked a great article published by the NY Daily Times on the repulsive situation with Alton Sterling.

And then, this morning, I read about Philando Castile. In our neighborhood. Our backyard.

I’ve often wrestled with the question: Is there anything too serious to be joked about? And I’ve gone back and forth with my answers. Of course! People dying of cancer? Rape? Racism? You can’t joke about that stuff- it’s not funny.

But can it be? I don’t know. I have heard (and laughed) about a lot of serious shit. You can’t take life too seriously… no one’s getting out alive. Lighten up. “Don’t sweat the small stuff” and “it’s all small stuff”.

As a comedian myself, I feel like it’s my job to make people laugh. Take away their misery, even for a short period of time…

Then, life continues to happen.

I miscarried in April (I think, technically  speaking, that’s what they’re calling it but it wasn’t a miscarriage to me. He was fully formed. I saw him and felt him… Named him, loved him, made plans around his arrival including moving so we’d have another bedroom for a nursery). My sister died of a drug overdose in May. I have been able to joke about those things, gallows humor it’s called. Not because I think it’s funny or because I don’t want to be serious but because I will lose my fucking mind it all I think about is the devastation I feel.

I hate to think that any of this is race related but I cannot afford to be color blind at this point. There are far too many casualties to waive off as coincidence.

I remember being proud to say “I don’t see color”, we are all the same. It doesn’t matter. The truth is, it SHOULDN’T matter. We should all be the same, I mean, we are on the inside…

And, at the risk of serious backlash, I dare say- I don’t think it’s ALL a race problem. It’s a power struggle too. It’s police, armed with guns and a superiority complex that need to be addressed too. Blacks are not the only ones who suffer injustice at the hands of the people trusted to “protect and serve” us but they certainly seem to be the main focus right now.

So, is it okay for you to laugh?

I’ll leave that up to you.

In the meantime, I will try to continue to make people laugh, though I will steer clear of the tragedy occuring today.

What do you think? Am I onto something? Am I way off base? Let me know what you think in the comments below!