Saturday, September 17, 2005

A preponderance of Fatmen?

A man recently contacted me, saying that also has a blog with the name The Fatman Chronicles. The world keeps getting smaller and smaller, huh? He asked me if I minded him using the same name as me, and I said “Why not…it’s not like we’re making any money!”

At least, I’m not getting paid to do this. Which begs the question of why I am, in fact, doing this.

He seems like a nice enough guy, and on his website he posts this about himself:

“I'm a retired/disabled, semi-skilled laborer who grew up as a Roman Catholic
son of liberal, card carrying union members. I've since morphed into an
conservative-libertarian (small l) atheist who thinks unions have outlived their
usefulness, or at least been corrupted by the NEA, AFSCME and SEIU into
something that trade unionists from seventy-five to one hundred years ago
wouldn't recognize.”
Normally I wouldn’t post somebody else’s words without first asking them, but he has these right out on the front of his website. Plus, from what I read, he seems to be rather lighthearted about life and does not appear to be the sort who gets riled up over something as pointless and stupid as a blog; especially one like mine, which epitomizes these characteristics.

He seems like an interesting person, like the kind of person with whom I would agree on many issues and disagree on others. He morphed from liberal/religious to conservative non-religious. That’s an interesting mix, one you don’t see too often. Politics and religious belifes tend to go hand in hand in this country (sadly) and it is rare that you find a person who not only mixes the two apparent opposites, but has switched sides on both. This tells me that he is a person who can look at an issue from all sides and speak intelligently and critically about many things. This I respect.

We would have some heartfelt agreements on many things, the largest example of which is the lack of faith in the current status of unions in the US. Being a former member of SEIU local (number deleted for fear of retribution), I can tell you first hand how the people involved do not care one iota for the employees they claim to protect. When I started working at that particular job, I sought information about meetings and charities and all sorts of things you would expect a union to do. They did not respond. I e-mailed and called for over six months with no response. So I dropped out of the union, choosing instead to pay the “fair share” dues (which are a bit less), because I figured that if they were going to be assholes, I would rather not give them my money. Then the 2004 election came (after several years of no responses from the union with regard to a littany of grievances from myself and others in my department) and all of a sudden they wanted to know why I was not logner interested in supporting my union brethren. They also wanted to know who I planned to vote for and if I would like to make a donation to the John F. Kerry campaign. I told them I did not plan to vote for Kerry and I asked them not to call me again.

They called me at least ten times a day for over four months, oftentimes threatening me with job loss if I didn’t vote for John Kerry. At one point they went through a whole list of false accusations against Bush, and followed it up with the question, “So have I conviced you that Bush is not right for the country?”

I said, “That’s it! You got me. I won’t vote for Bush this year!”

“Way to go, brother,” the man said. And this was creepy since people don’t normally refer to a white man as “brother” unless they are trying to sell you something or unless they want you to join a cult

He finished: “Can I count on you to vote for John Kerry, then?”

“No, actually,” I said. “I think I’m going to vote for Curt Schilling.”

“Who?”

“Curt Schilling! You know, the pitcher for the Red Sox? He’s got the lowest earned run average of any candidate in the mix. And did you see that bloody sock in the world series. Man, if that ain’t leadership I don’t know what is!”

He hung up on me after that.

So, yeah, the Fatman and I would get along well in this regard. The religion issue might be different. I’m sure we’d still get along well enough because I’m an easygoing guy and he seems the same. Large people tend not to get too terribly excited. We’re too worried about heart attacks and such. It’s best to keep the blood pressure as low as possible.

So while I bet we would disagree on religion, I’m sure we could have some fun conversations!

1 comment:

fatman said...

Thank you for your kind words, though the ability to "...speak intelligently and critically about many things" is open to debate. And no, it doesn't bother me that you borrowed my profile to use in your post. Especially since I used your post as inspiration for a post of my own.