Sunday, April 28, 2013

A Difference in Philosphy

A few days ago, several of us got together for wine and cheese tasting and we decided to hang out afterwards.  There was a teacher, a surgeon, a pediatrician, and an MD/PhD in training.  Much of the evening was wrapped in very heated debate, from gun control, to "Obamacare," and to education.

At the heart of the debate is a difference in philosophy, not dissimilar to democrats vs republicans.  It is no secret that education in the US is in need of an update.  The question is, how to best remake the education system in the US?

On one side is the surgeon, utilizing a surgeon's thinking.  The argument: We should focus our resources on those who can best utilize them and elevate those students to their maximum potential, and not "waste" resources on the students at the bottom who cannot demonstrate improvement.  Society should strive to equip the best and brightest with the means to achieve what they're meant to.  This makes sense in a surgeon's mind, as a surgeon must be able to triage which patients are suitable for surgery and which aren't.

On the other side is the teacher and (peripherally) the pediatrician.  The argument: We provide all students the necessary resources to succeed - for the bottom of the class to reach the middle, and for the best and brightest to soar.  Every child in society deserves a fair shot at an education, with resources devoted to the struggling as well as to the gifted.

The problem with the first argument is that it is in danger of creating a tiered caste society, only widening the achievement gap into a chasm.  The problem with the second argument is that there simply aren't enough resources or political will to make it a reality everywhere.

My personal issue with the first argument is that I believe that all children deserve a fair shot, not just some.  And yes, some children need more help and resources to achieve, but it is possible.  I have seen it.  I have worked with a charter school that - rather takes the best of the best students - takes the worst students in public schools and demonstrates that they can at least achieve to the middle.  These are students who dropped out of school due to LGBTQ bullying, teen pregnancy, domestic violence, mild mental health issues, etc.  Given the right learning environment, they are not hopeless.

On a more personal note, I have a good friend growing up who went to the same schools as me for most of our K-12 lives.  I was almost always in the honors/AP courses.  He was barely scraping by in the regular courses.  His educational experience was vastly different than mine.  My teachers expected us to push hard and succeed.  His teachers treated him as though he could not achieve and would never amount to anything much more, that learning wasn't as important for him.  This negatively impacted him until he had a moment where he was determined to change his fate.  He transitioned from a 2-year college to a 4-year state university, and from there got a good stable job helping others in bad social situations.  He was able to succeed.  Is he the next Steve Jobs or Bill Gates?  No.  But neither am I.

The reality of the current status in education is neither - currently the system is more and more being set up to "teach to the test," thereby aiming to bring the bottom up but also inadvertently bringing the top down, both meeting in the middle.  Critical courses such as creative expression (art, music, theater, etc) and physical activity (gym, recess) are being cut out in order to cram more math and science to satisfy the tests (and I'd argue that science isn't even being taught properly on the whole).  Current education is trending towards mediocrity as more tests are implemented to demonstrate achievement and teachers are being paid for performance (an oversimplification and generalization, but I'm not in education so this is just what I hear).

I don't know the answer to "fixing" the system, just as I don't know the answer to fixing healthcare.  Obamacare is one answer, but I'm not convinced it's the best or final answer.  The alternatives aren't much better though.  What I do know is that the answer depends on the philosophy we choose to take, both on a personal level and as a society.  Are only some worthy of the resources?  Do everyone get the exact same resources?  Or is the answer more nuanced?  I don't know but I do know that the answer is a difference in philosophy.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

First Time

Welp, no longer a virgin anymore I suppose.  It was meh.  But perhaps I should backtrack.

Yesterday, a (gay) friend visited me who I haven't seen in almost a year.  I've known him for probably 4-5 years or so.  He's in the process of moving out of his town to literally halfway across the globe, so I insisted that he visit me before he left the country.  We had also flirted/bantered online back and forth about all this (sex), so none of it is any surprise.

So anyway, long story short, we had brunch, we hung out a bit, we went back to my apartment where I eventually coaxed him.  We wanked each other a bit before I ask if he was up for "something more."  I handed him a condom and lube and asked what he wanted to do - he would top, and I would bottom.

He asked, "Don't you want your first time to be special?"

To which I replied, "Meh, I'm over special.  Plus this is special in its own way."  I've been holding off and waiting for so long, I don't really care anymore.  I'd much rather it be him than some one night stand whose sexual history I know nothing about and will never see/talk to again.

So he put on the condom and lubed up . . . it wasn't enough lube.  It hurt when he tried and I told him to stop.  He applied some more lube and then slowly entered.  It was alright.  He's about 7 inches and somewhat thick.  He slowly ramped the speed of his pounding - I didn't like that too much.  He never hit the good spots (aka, the prostate) for very long back he was going faster; it felt much better when he slowed down.  Eventually I actually kinda got bored and told him to stop, and we'd just wank each other to finish.

He then did this thing to me that he discovered accidentally a while back with some other (uncut) guys.  He just rubbed the bare head with his lubed hand and I was soooo sensitive - he had me squirming and twitching.  It felt tortuously good, but it wasn't the kind of good that gets me to orgasm.  At one point I'm pretty sure I shot out pre-cum, as I felt a spray of something up to my chest and shoulder; it definitely wasn't cum.

After he finished me off, I returned the favor.  I basically tried the same thing he did, but he wasn't anywhere as sensitive (he's cut).  However, when he came and squirted all over he chest - if he hadn't sat up slightly he would've probably shot over his head - I continued to rub his penis.  He suddenly got that post-orgasm sensitivity and I thought I'd repay him for basically doing what he did to me, lol.  He actually grabbed my hand to stop me - too bad he grabbed the wrong hand, muahaha.

So there you have it, my first time.  It was meh.  I suppose it's something to get used to, an "acquired taste" if you will?  Hmm . . . I imagine first-time sex with a woman may be more enjoyable, haha.
My time with the last guy (post here) was way more enjoyable.  I think it was because of all the kissing and cuddling, it just felt way more affectionate.  Oh well, experiences.