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It's always a risk to post a TalkBack episode from almost 9 years ago without reviewing it first. For Pride this year, I'm taking that risk. Since #IC #107 focused on moments in my past I'm not proud of, interacting with gays without recognizing and checking my ingrained homophobia, I figure this one would have embarrassing elements either way. It is a direct follow-up to the previous TalkBack episode. These two Inappropriate Conversations were intentionally released in the same week originally. There is a connection, along with a follow-up to one story in an episode that would follow a month later.

I grew up in the Central Time Zone in the United States. The late news was at 10 p.m. On Friday nights, one of the local stations would start a movie at 10:30, and it was often quite thrilling to a kid my age. Some themes were supernatural, others science fiction. Endings weren't always as happy as the Disney and Pink Panther movies my parents preferred for a family outing to the cinema. Halloween in particular was peak season for this "late night" Friday movie of the week. 

Cases in point:

A Cold Night's Death
Carnival of Souls
Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956)
Sherlock Holmes and The Scarlet Claw
The Other (1972)
Asylum (Amicus)
The House that Dripped Blood
Trilogy of Terror


A significant number of Americans, most from the political and religious right, still owe Barack Obama an apology. 
When you understand the persecution a group thinks they will suffer, whether based on rational conclusions or not, it provides great insight into what they would do if given ultimate and absolute power. We are wise to be wary. The people who predicted Obama would "round up" both Christians and guns might just pose a similar dire threat to their perceived political enemies. We haven't done a sufficient job of denouncing false prophecies in recent years, and now we must deal with the consequences.


Pride was the focus for TalkBack episodes released in June this year. (Some of those files were mistakenly deleted and restored in July, despite being originally released in June.) I ended the series with a 2015 episode looking at the "T" of LGBTQ* and my perspective on how simple it is to address people in the manner they prefer. 

I was pretty young when my family went to an out-of-town wedding, an older cousin getting married. I must have asked an annoying question that morning because I recall getting a lecture on manners. We had only just met Jim the night before, but I read the wedding announcement which introduced him as James. "The parents of James ..." is typical verbiage. Conversation on the way the church stopped like a needle scratching across a vinyl record. It was a "listen, young man" moment from my mother to me: under no circumstances was I to address the new member of our family as James. He had told us politely and clearly that he prefers to be called Jim "and that is how we will address him from now on," I was told.

Simple to understand. It is, if nothing else, very bad manners to call someone a name, when they have asked for different treatment. Seems simple enough. It would be churlish not to comply, perhaps even provocative or confrontational. I was taught that "good people" call people by the names they have chosen and use "sir" or "ma'am" (not to mention "him" and "her") as instructed.

I do not directly cover this story within this callback to #IC #177. I have no doubt I mentioned it in a later episode touching on the same topic. It doesn't seem that hard to grasp, though, even if concepts like trans/cis can, for some of us, be hard to grasp.

Have you ever been unexpectedly stuck staring down the barrel of a gun being held by someone who clearly states he has no qualms about shooting you if you don't cooperate?

Outside of military-style preparation or perhaps police academy work, I believe it's impossible to predict how anyone would respond in such circumstances. I also found it challenging to assess how I responded for weeks, if not months, afterward. Simple answers rarely suffice.

When I tell the story now, I usually present the situation for laughs. Why not? If you can't find the humor, then you don't fully understand it. 
My understanding exceeds the platitudes and soundbites of your average person protesting for their "rights."


Also: here is a recent panel discussion on the This Week In Gay podcast, covering different topics. Pleased to participate!


Some Assembly Required (A NeoSurrealist Forsaking a Habit for Lent)


Chapter 3

"Gone, But Not Forgotten"

Timed Test

Hostile Takeover Bid

Fine Tuning


"If you cannot address the concerns of one increasingly irate customer, then those concerns ultimately may cost you the business of other customers as well."


Different Drummer: Bob Walkenhorst

The Rainmakers in Norway

As far as I can tell, Inappropriate Conversations #29 is the most downloaded episode in the history of this podcast. I'm not sure why a wide-ranging perspective on the concept of school prayer would get such a response, but I'm pleased to share it here.
This episode also qualifies under the heading of topics too large for one recording, so I'll share #IC 30 next, soon, to complete the thought.
I describe myself as a radical moderate, using terminology very loosely, and this topic provides a pretty good example. This first episode in particular shares a counterpoint to my position, and most of the 2-part arc is me providing information and criticism to what might be considered my own camp. I believe I have credentials as a Christian to share what Jesus taught to other Christians, for example.
And this was just the beginning of the podcast, from the first year in 2010.



Inappropriate Conversations
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