Poetry Monday: Social Animals

I think I understand why people go to bars
I mean those people who go every day for hours
I never saw the appeal or desire to be
Drunk sitting with other drunks with no ambition
Maybe that was my reasoning. It didn’t feel productive
But to them I think it feels like socializing
I sit in coffee shops, usually reading or writing
But it also feels like I’m socializing
I can talk to someone if I want to or not
I’m still around people. I feel like a part of the world
Sometimes that’s enough to not feel lonely
And people go to bars, so they feel like a part of the world

From the poetry collection Cats, Coffee, Catharsis.

Coffee and Contemplation: Family Stories Month

Oral tradition has been part of society since humans could utter a string of sounds with different meanings. Family Stories Month is a continuation of that but focused on one’s family. I don’t have many fun stories of my family, but I did recently have my DNA tested by Ancestry.com. It started a little weird because it first said there was a lot of Spanish ancestry. There were many people like me who had Spanish or Portuguese ancestry who later did not. Some of those people like me then had Irish and Scottish ancestry. To sum it up, I think lots of people in Europe were having lots of sex in other countries.

The DNA results on Ancestry keep changing, not because of mistakes, but because their science keeps getting better. It’s possible the numbers I’m about to share will change in the future, but for now this is what it says. 41% English and Northwestern Europe. Most of that coming from North Yorkshire and Lincolnshire according to Ancestry. 27% Scottish. 13% European Jewish. 10% Irish. 8% Norwegian. 1% Swedish. Many of my ancestors settled in the Missouri Ozarks and East Tennessee. I knew I had family in East Tennessee, so this was no surprise. I still claim some Hispanic ancestry but it’s more likely I’d be called Black Irish.

It was fun getting my DNA tested and seeing what components make up who I am. I’ll call myself a Jewish Viking from Scotland. That’s got a nice ring to it. There are other websites that took the information from my Ancestry DNA and took it a step further and listed the ancestors from the time of the Dark Ages and before. That was a fun history lesson I don’t want to get into at the moment. Anyway, that’s some fun family history of mine. Tell me about yours if you know it.

Remember Movember

What is Movember? You’ve heard of No Shave November. Well, Movember is about growing a mustache for charity. Movember takes on the three serious issues facing men’s health: prostate cancer, testicular cancer, and mental health. All forms of cancer are bad and that’s why it’s important to get checked out on the regular. Mental health is something that people need checked out often as well. Many men don’t discuss the things that bother them because they may feel embarrassed or emasculated. Check on your friends and see how they’re doing. Always remind them they can talk to or confide in you whenever they need.

There are a few ways to participate in Movember. You can grow a mustache for charity or donate to charity. You can walk or run a distance of 60 miles for each of the 60 men lost to suicide every hour. Or you can host an event to raise money for charity. The month-long observance started in 2003 and was founded by the Movember Foundation. It’s time for men to start building each other up and to stop putting each other down. It’s a bit late to do much this month but bringing awareness to men’s health should be a year-round endeavor. Stay safe and check out the Movember Foundation. They do cool things.