27 February 2010


One thing that I love about the queer community is the appreciation of self-identity. This extends beyond sexuality and gender identities, but into all aspects of life. I've noticed myself and others speaking about almost anything in terms of an identity: anything from social class, to political orientation, to emotional conditions, to simple descriptor words like "a flirt" or "stoner" have beecome things you do or don't identify as. However, the community is also especially accepting of the fact that not all people's identities fit a label. Identities like "queer", for example, are flexible and have no solid definition, allowing people to identify however they wish.

In discussions about different identities, I've often had people say something along the lines of "why do we need to label?" or "labels are for jars!".  I've found this to be very frustrating, mostly because it hinders discussion, but also because, in my opinion, someone's self-identity is an integral part of who a person is, and an important aspect of how we understand ourselves. Although not every person may need a label to understand who they are and not all people have a label that fits them, I don't feel that way at all. Instead, I am constantly searching for the identity that suits me the best, and this is constantly on my mind. If labels are for jars, I must be full of pickles.

In the greater context of philosophy of language and metaphysics, however, such a perspective seems to go against everything I believe it. The view that I most often subscribe to sees the world as one whole. However, when we choose to define something in this whole (usually through language), we pull it out of whole. Once we define "chair", we no longer have one, but two: "chair", and everything other than "chair".  My personal favorite philosophy, Daoism, describes this very perspective:
All in the world recognize the beautiful as beautiful.
Herein lies ugliness.
All recognize the good as good.
Herein lies evil.

Being and non-being produce each other.
Difficulty and ease bring about each other.
Long and short delimit each other.
High and low rest on each other.
Sound and voice harmonize each other.
Front and back follow each other.

Therefore, the sage abides in the condition of wu-wei.
And carries out the wordless teaching.
Here, the myriad things are made, yet not separated.

-- Daodejing Ch 2
The Tao produces one, one produces two.
The two produce the three and the three produce all things.

-- Daodejing Ch 42
By abandoning definitions and dichotomies, you can become one with the Dao.  Thus, I think Lao Tzu would discourage us from creating and claiming labels. However, I find this somehow counter-intuitive. I would rather we have a plethora of labels to choose from and be able to create our own as we see fit than subscribe to a limiting binary. Though it would be nice to eliminate labels entirely, I don't see that happening any time soon: whenever we meet someone, they're going to want to know if we're gay or straight (well, actually whenever we meet someone, they'll assume we're straight, but if they question it, they'll want to know); I'd much rather be able to tell them I'm "queer" then identify as "neither of those" as I attempt to break down the structure of labels. Somehow, it seems that if we keep adding labels and making them acceptable, eventually, we will break down this structure, and it will be much more pleasant and effective than trying to forcefully destroy it the other way around.

Another element of self-identity that has been on my mind is the idea of "self": if we decide to do so, can we identify as whatever we wish? I've seen a few discussions recently about appropriation and misuse of identities such as queer, genderqueer, and even ally. This seems right on par with another Eastern philosophical tradition: Confucianism. Daoism, as I discussed, rejects labels and names, and it was in many ways intentionally built to contrast with Confucianism, which instead puts a very strong emphasis on names. One major element of the Confucian tradition is the rectification of names: one must act like whoever they are to actually be that person. For example, a "king" is a kind ruler who rules for his subjects. A selfish ruler who cares more about profit than rightness and humaneness is not a "king", but a "tyrant". Now, I'm not trying to say that there's a certain way someone must act to really be genderqueer, but I do think that Confucius would agree with anarchafemme on Questioning Transphobia. I think that article does a really good job with discussing the problems associated with the appropriation of any identity, and actually being something is an integral part of identifying as such.

Spring has come!

I officially declare yesterday the first day of spring. Not so much because it was really really warm, such days happen often during winter in Colorado, but because it felt like springtime. Thursday night it snowed, and yesterday it was more than 50 degrees, and I love Colorado. In the spring, the mood swings get slightly worse than usual. They happen just as often, but the snowstorms are bigger and the warm days are warmer.

My weather-dependent mood follows. I start running whenever I'm alone: running to class like one of those kids, running to my room in the middle of the night, running because I'm too impatient to walk. I get excited, bouncy, giddy; I sit still less than I usually do. I also get paranoid. On the other hand, I feel sadder and lonelier. Little things set me off (I was reading Kozol's Savage Inequalities yesterday, and I started crying, but then, that's a really sad book.

I'm so excited for spring.

PS. While on the Hop last night, we were having a conversation about spring and later seasons in general, and the entire bus participated. It made me so happy to see people actually talk to each other!

25 February 2010


I've written a few blogs recently that mentioned my relationship with my body, so I decided that this is something worth blogging about, considering it's something I live with constantly.

Perhaps there was a time when we were one, a time when we were young and happy and fresh. Somehow, I doubt even that. I feel like my relationship with my body has been wrong and lacking something since I've been alive. Some of these things I remember feeling when I was still in Russia, meaning I was at most six years old.  Still, no doubt that this was once just an afterthought on the periphery of my life. Today, it's a constant struggle, dead center stage.

I've never felt attached to my body. I've always considered it a vessel for myself, a trap, a prison. I sometimes thought that death and only death could free me from my body. My body didn't fit me. Sometimes, I felt like it was too large for me, I was like a rattle. Other times, it was too small, and I was squished. Most of the time, it was some of both.

My body developed a personality of its own. It would have mood swing: random moods, unrelated to how I was physically feeling or what my mental mood was.  And it was powerful. When my body-mood was at it's worst, my mind would inadvertently follow.  My body-mood could impact how I feel more than any occurrences, more than any emotional downfalls, more than anything else. I became a slave to my body.

Then, the real physical symptoms set in. Not the crazy "mood" stuff that for which I could barely pinpoint a physical sensation, but real feelings: shooting pains in my legs, arms and face; hypersensitivity; motor tics. I saw doctors, got MRIs, everything. But there was no cause. Conversion disorder: physical symptoms for psychological reasons.

The tics are the worst. It's real mind vs body battle. On one hand, there's the body, completely in pain, growing tense, a sensation, a desire to do something I don't want to do. On the other hand, there's the mind, trying to withhold, because if I do it once, I'll do it again, and again, and again, because these tics can and do hurt me. But the pain grows, the tension builds, my body wins. I move. And I know that I consciously willed that movement, only I really couldn't help it.

Now, there were days when my body-mood was awful, but other days, I would barely notice it, it was just in the corner of my mind somewhere, and I'd feel somewhat normal. It took me a long time to realize that even at the best of times I'm not in the best of states.

May 09 I tripped psycoblin mushrooms for the first time in my life. While my mind experience extreme euphoria and deep, scattered thought, most of my trip took place in my body. My body experienced what I can best describe as a return to normalcy.  Suddenly, we were one. I walked, raving about how amazing it is, that I'm walking, not my feet, those strange foreign body parts way off in some other land. No, I was walking. I was touching. I was feeling. I was moving. I was climbing a tree, a tree with the lowest branch so high up, I never thought I could dare climb it. But I did! There was so much I could do that I never knew before.

After the trip, my entire perspective on my relationship with my body has changed. I no longer try to battle my body every step of the way, but instead, I am working to become one with it.  It's difficult. My tool is yoga. Yoga helps me feel strong, powerful, and connected. Since moving to Boulder, I've been doing yoga at the Wesley Fellowship, and it's been great: the instructor is amazing, and it's really helping my relationship with my body. However, each step of the way is a struggle. Except for the occasional yoga-high, I still never feel in my body, and, at times, the gap between us is so huge, I can't help but roll up in a ball and



Four days before the end of the month, I'm writing this blog post, the eleventh one in the month of February '10. Thus, February, the shortest month of the year, is, as of now, the month I've blogged the most, outnumbering even September '09, when I was a experiencing a blogging honeymoon phase with 10 posts. There are a lot of things I'd meant to blog for quiet a while, and, this last week, I've been blogging every day, multiple times a day, often, because I'd been in the mood. As this mood continues, expect more posts. But, I assure you, this is just a phase. Don't let a plethora of words scare you away from reading about my life!

I love you all <3

PS. My sidebar now features some of the blogs I follow. Check it out, I follow cool blogs.

24 February 2010

a softer world

Today I'm posting comics, because all the cool kids are doing it.

But really, recently I read over all of a softer world, which is absolutely amazing. I bookmarked 38 that I liked, but finally, after a lot of thinking, I chose the seven that I like the most, and decided to share them on my this here blog. (Choosing only seven was almost impossible.) The sentence above each is the scroll-over text.

maybe 1996 was

it was like being high. nobody wanted to be around me


now the collection agencies have armies.

and progress and the future

Smash the state? Nah. I'll just ignore it and hope it ignores me.

I wouldn't make a very good doctor, for instance.

Don't get me wrong. My vagina is awesome.
It's pretty amazing and I suggest you read them all.

Next up, I plan to re-read all of xkcd and once again bookmark my favorites.

I am frustrated.

I am frustrated because today is one of those days, in every single way.

I am frustrated with the word "bisexual". I am frustrated because I think it goes against everything our community believes in. I am not frustrated with the fact that some people are bisexual, that some people may prefer binary gender identities or gender presentations to non-binary gender identities and gender presentations, but I'm frustrated with people for whom this isn't true that use that term out of convenience without even giving it a second though.

I am frustrated with the trinary of sexualities: L G B, and I'm frustrated because I try to explain "queer", "pan", "fluid" to people around me, and in the end, many simply conclude that I'm bi, erasing my attraction to non-binary individuals, and erasing the existence of non-binary individuals.

I am frustrated with the word "biphobia" because it means practically the same thing as "monosexism", only biphobia refers to phobia of bisexuality, while monosexism refers to phobia of various non-monosexual orientations.

I am frustrated with pansexual people who say that, to them, gender "doesn't matter". That they don't see a person's gender, but just the person "inside". Because, you know what, gender does matter. And, sure, maybe you don't have a preference for a certain gender, but it's an integral part of your partners identity, so you can't just pretend it's not there, and then act like you're somehow more enlightened than others because of your supposed lack of sexuality. And I'm frustrated because this alone is making me shy away from identifying as panromantic, although I feel like it's the term that best fits me.

I am frustrated with the hostility I am facing as a gray-a sexual. I am frustrated with people insisting that this is something that I need to fix, that I haven't met the right person and need to try to, that it's not normal. I've had a healthier sex life than most of the sexual people I know. I am sick and tired of people assuming that they know me better than I know myself, and that I can't be happy without sex.

I am frustrated because my romantic orientation is apparently not as "real" as a sexual person's. Because I recently told a friend that I am, somewhat, polyamorous and curious about polyamory, and she said "well, you're also a romantic asexual", as if that makes me any less polyamorous.

I am frustrated because I do have a somewhat unusual relationship with my body, and that recently, people have been acting like there's something wrong with that. Like, a friend of mine said that I'm "ignoring my vagina", which I'm not, I know my body much, much better than the vast majority of women, and I know very well how I relate to it. My relationship with my body is very healthy, and I don't see why it has to be the same as everyone else assigned female at birth. I am me, I am not everyone else.

I am tired of the biological determinism in the gay and lesbian communities. I am frustrated with gays and lesbians expressing a disgust in "vagina" or "penis" to prove their sexuality.  I am frustrated because it puts the focus on sex, alienating queer romantic asexuals. But mostly, I am frustrated because I think that's very, very transphobic.

I am frustrated with my body. I am frustrated with the way it feels and the way I relate to it. I am annoyed because I have issues with PVI, because it's uncomfortable at best and painful at worst; and I wish I was at least ambivalent to it, and could occasionally enjoy it as I do with oral, anal, and other types of sex. I am frustrated with the fact that no one else seems to have a sex identity quiet like mine, and I honestly don't think there's even a word to describe how I feel about my physical sex.

I am exhausted from questioning. I've been questioning my sexuality since I knew it was possible for a girl to like girls. I've been questioning my gender identity since I was a child. I've been questioning my (a)sexuality since before I had sex. And I'm still questioning it all. And, you know what, "fluid" is the perfect word to describe me in all respects, but somehow, it isn't enough. As I'm experiencing an ardent phase, I'm beginning to wonder: what if I'm not asexual? As I lean towards men, I'm beginning to wonder: what if I'm straight? And I'm so. fucking. tired of it.

I am frustrated because I feel like people have been disrespecting me lately, because I think I'm being much too patient with a few friends.

I am frustrated and I feel lonely.

Last night, I had a dream that someone drugged us all, and we talked and talked about the deepest things, and then we cried. But, when we woke up, we couldn't remember any of it. We were safe: safe from the danger of intimacy, safe from others knowing who we are, safe from anyone seeing us cry. Yet we felt so much better after the drugs had worn off, so much closer, so much lighter. We talked about everything. When I woke up in the morning, I was back to this silent world.

Can we please talk?

23 February 2010

My Political Identity

Questioning. Sounds like me, right? Actually, if it was more like me, it would be fluid, but I don't think that counts as a political identity.

I used to identify as libertarian. Socially liberal and economically conservative. As you can imagine, this would follow naturally from my upbringing. My family has experienced first-hand the terrors of the Communist Soviet Union and spoke of them often, and the political leaning of the Soviet Union is on the other side of the spectrum from libertarian. My stepdad is a CEO who started his small business from scratch, my mother is a neurologist who single-handedly worked to become a doctor in the US.  The entrepreneurial, independent spirit is very alive in my family, and this spirit asks for economic independence, rather than government intervention in such matters. Economically conservative. However, my family's political concerns did not include social issues. I figured those out on my own: why would ever make something illegal if it doesn't affect you at all? Socially liberal. I fell in love with libertarian ideas the moment I first learned about them. To me, they seemed like everything the United States stood for: freedom. The government is only there to protect your rights: right to life, right to property. (Here's a 2D political spectrum, with a red dot where I used to place myself).

Recently, I've begun to question this orientation.  I'm impressed by the fact that countries that are considered socialist are very healthy, happy countries. Take, for instance Norway, that has the highest Human Development Index, second place in the Global Peace Index, and a 1.0 (meaning full equality) in the Gender Parity Index. So now I'm beginning to wonder: am I wrong? Perhaps socialism - real, balanced socialism, not the corrupt communism I always hear about from personal anecdotes concerning my family's experiences - perhaps it's a good thing.

That being said, I think in politics, I think we often forget the big picture. We continuously bicker - liberal vs conservative, left vs. right, democrat vs republican, omgz-you're-a-communist vs well-you're-a-fucking-fascist. In all reality, our system of government is Socio-Democratic Liberalism. That's the form of government in the US and in Norway, the form advocated by the right and the left. That's really what we're dealing with. Period.

22 February 2010

Why I love the queer community.

Saturday night, Alex and I went to the Red Party, a party hosted by Boulder Pride (evidence pic; don't I look queer?).  We were perhaps the only ones under the age of 30 at the entire party (although we ran into Lynnette there, and that was especially exciting).  It was a really great party, themed after the Seven Decadent Sins, dominated by older lesbians. And it was amazing. Old gay people are probably my favorite people ever. There were so many cute couples, dancing and having fun like no one else, and it was really inspirational and powerful.

And it really got me thinking: all these people - at least ten years older than myself, and many much older than that - all these people have lived through so much, seen so much. Imagine the homophobia that must have existed ten years ago, when some of these people were in college. How about twenty years ago. Thirty. Imagine how much they must have seen, how much they must have endured.  Yet here they are, today, dancing. Dancing for love.

So here's why I love the queer community:
1. It's a culture of activism. It's a group of people fighting, acting, bringing about change. And it really works. Sure, it takes time, but we've made so many strides, and we keep moving forward!
2. It's a culture of having fun. Of making the most of life. It's a culture where, as you make these strides, you party. Party with the one you love.
3. It's a culture of love. Love is what we fight for, love is what matters.
4. It's a culture of being yourself. And not just being yourself, but being proud that you're you.

Someday, I'm going to be one of those amazing, crazy old queers.

21 February 2010

How did I get here?

My family ridicules me for having so many queer friends. They criticize the fact that most of my friends are queer. They insist I need to branch out, that I'm limiting myself. Once, my mother even told me that the reasons so many of my friends are queer is because I struggle with making friends, and that gay people do too, so I get along with them. I told my mom she knows nothing about gay people. These things really get to me.  Often, I feel ashamed; often, I feel like this isn't good enough. I notice that my friends, even my queer friends, have straight friends, as well, and I feel awful that the vast majority of my friends are not heterosexual. To tell you the truth, the only reason I am not branching out beyond my current queer group of friends is because I don't know how: I struggle with meeting people, and I found (and am still working on finding) my place in Boulder through clubs like GSA and QI and through the people I met at those clubs.

Only I shouldn't feel ashamed. Recently, I visited an old friend at Northwestern University. She told me all about her friends, and how much fun she has. Most of her friends are band people, and she met them through the college band. And she was so happy - she went on and on about how cool they are, about their band inside jokes, about how happy she is. So I began to wonder - what's the difference between that and my friendships? Most of my friends are queer, and I met most of them through queer organizations. And I could go on and on about how awesome these people are, about our inside jokes, about how happy I am. I'm attracted to the gay community, I love the gay community, and that's why I befriended queer activists!

Often, I wonder how different my life would be if I hadn't come out last summer. Before summer, although I admitted that I had some attraction to women, I primarily identified as straight. Occasionally, I would tell people I am questioning or bi-curious, but by the end of the day, I was straight (and turned down many girls in highschool because I was straight).  To tell you the truth, until I met the right woman to pull me out of the closet, my sexuality was not a major concern in my life. Even now, I still believe I lean primarily towards men, and I even consider myself hetero-flexible at times.  Thus, if I hadn't met that woman, if I hadn't come out, I would have identified, acted, and felt straight - and I would have been fine with it.  Still, I think I would have ended up in the same place I am now. Before coming out, before seriously questioning my sexuality, I was already active in the GSA at my highschool, and I proudly wore an "I am an Ally" pin on my backpack. I had already looked up the GSA and the GLBTRC, and I was already planning to get involved in the gay community at CU. If I was straight, I would have joined the same clubs, met the same people. Even my love life would be essentially the same - except for a few casual make-outs, all my significant physical and romantic partners since starting college have been men. I probably would have still cut my hair. If I were still straight, I would look, act, and interact in much the same way as I do now.

So how did I get here? I got here because this is where my passions lie. Because this is something I believe in. I got here because I love friendly, kind people, because I love unique individuals, because I love change and activist. I got here not because of my sexuality, but because of my personality.

14 February 2010

My Sexuality

I just had a really fun conversation with myself about my sexuality.

queer for queer, panromantic, gray-a sexual, fluid

Queer for queer? What does that mean? I am primarily attracted to other queer people.

Alright, then what's queer? Generally speaking, it means not hetero-romantic. There are exceptions. It's also a self-identity.

Is hetero-flexible queer? It depends what you mean by hetero-flexible. If it means "I like guys but sometimes fuck girls" (or vise versa), then no. If it means "I usually like guys, but once in a while I am attracted to a girl, and not afraid to act on it", then yes.

So you're never interested in straight men? I'm not strictly queer for queer. However, certain "queer" aspects help. Involvement and activism in the queer community; queer friends; absolutely no homophobia or transphobia, EVER; not being afraid of showing intimacy with same-sex friends; not being afraid to show feminine characteristics. Actually, I think everyone should act like that, but many straight men don't. Overall, though, if you're a straight man, I'm most likely not into you.

Are you interested in straight trans men? That would be a straight man, as discussed above.

Are you interested in asexuals? Very. In fact, I'm gray-a sexual. However, if you're a hetero-romantic asexual man, I'm probably not into you.

But straight trans men or hetero-romantic asexuals or hetero-flexible people sometimes identify as queer. And sometimes, they don't.

What's panromantic? That means I can be romantically attracted to any gender.

Isn't that just bi? Bi means two. There are more than two genders.

So, which do you like more? Boys or girls? I usually lean slightly towards men. It changes. I'm also really into androgyny as a gender presentations.

Gray a-sexual? What's that? A gray-a sexual is someone who falls between asexuality and sexuality on the (a)sexuality spectrum.

Oh... so you're asexual? If you use that as an umbrella term.

Does that mean you don't have sex? Maybe.

What? I'm still trying to figure this part out. You can talk to me about it, if you'd like.

Alright, in that case, moving on. Fluid: what does that mean? It means these answers will be outdated tomorrow.

13 February 2010

My Vagina

I went to see an amazing performance of the Vagina Monologues last night. That really got me thinking about my relationship with my own vagina.

I developed a very close relationship with myself when I was still very young. At about 11 or 12, I began touching and exploring my sex organs. Curiously, I began researching the female anatomy. I'd spend hours on the internet reading about the clitoris, the g-spot, masturbation, orgasms, and why it's important to know oneself. Then, I'd spend hours more in the real world finding my clitoris, my g-spot, masturbating, getting orgasms, and looking, with mirrors, at my vagina. Long before I even wanted to be sexually active, I already knew everything there is to know about what I do and don't like.

Still, my vagina and I are not especially good friends. Just the idea of "my vagina" sends me shivers. Why is that? Well, it's really all a matter of word choice.

My vulva I love.  My vulva is soft and sweet, it's loving and gentle yet fierce. My vulva is a beautiful serving platter, a shining silver tray.  My vulva carries a feast, a delicious meal prepared by some amazing chef. Before the platter even leaves the kitchen, that sultry smell makes your mouth water. This creation is not only delicious, but also gorgeous, and the sight of it fills you with excitement and euphoria.  The main course, the center of attention, is my clitoris. My sparkling phallus, embellished with nerve endings, hidden innocently under a little hood, but ready to come out, to look you right in the eye. My clitoris is a gift from God, a very special friend.

But my vagina? My vagina is the throat of a satanic monster. My vagina is the foreign body that bleeds every month, causing me to scream in agony - "Why? Why again?!?".  My vagina is like a flesh eating virus, quivering with self-hatred. My vagina does not want to touch or be touched, does not want to give or receive, my vagina does not want to exist.  My vagina is wrong. My vagina is a dark tunnel leading to a dungeon of torture. At the end of the tunnel are my ovaries. Those ovaries that send out some ominous hormones that determine my secondary sex characteristics for me. Those ovaries that, against my will, release an egg monthly, against my will inflict a bleeding wound on me.  Those ovaries that say that if we get pregnant, I'm actually the one who'll carry the baby or suffer through an abortion. Those ovaries are parasites.

Retreat, retreat! Back out, reverse. Let's get out of this awful place, let's come back to fresh air. Breathe. Let's get back to my vulva, that sits before you, that steaming meal, all the courses laid out. Dive in, indulge in all the flavors, more flavors than you've ever known existed. Or maybe hold off, just look at it for sometime, the way the meal is arranged, the colors, the smells. It's perfect. I love my vulva, minus my vagina.

11 February 2010

Valentine's Day

Secretly, I love Valentine's Day. Pretty strange, huh, to enjoy a holiday devoted entirely to the commercialization of love. Still, I love it: not because of what Valentine's Day is about, not even because of the chocolate, really, but all because the time of year. Right around February 14th my winter blues begin to turn into spring fever.

Valentine's Day 2006 was the last and only time I had an actual Valentine. The boy who would later become my boyfriend brought me a rose, a card, and chocolate. To tell you the truth, I've always been rather uncomfortable with such expressions of affection, but, on the other hand, that was the first time someone had honestly admitted their feelings for me, so I always smile when I remember that.

Valentine's Day 2007 was another life-changing day. I was in a deep bout of depression and self-harm that year, and February 13th, reminiscing on the previous year and the boy that was no longer mine, I had the worst episode of cutting in my entire life. It was that night, as I was recovering from my fit, that it hit me. I was being ridiculous. Now, it's not that I magically turned around and was happy after that moment (some of my saddest poetry was written that year after that day), but it was then that I realized that I need to recover, and I set my intention in the right direction. Thus, I'm especially happy that To Write Love On Her Arms Day always comes right before Valentines Day (February 12th and 13th this year).

I'm expecting a similar turn-around this year. It has been a tough winter, but I can see spring right over the horizon. To my surprise, I'm expecting this to be an amazing weekend, and am in a very optimistic mood.

01 February 2010

Salmon, and Humans

Reactions to The Great Salmon Race.

I was on the plane recently, and they were playing The Great Salmon Race on the TV. Have you seen those poor salmon? As if swimming upstream isn't bad enough, every step of the way, there's something trying to kill them. Birds of prey swoop down from above, grabbing the poor fish in their beaks, killing them with their talons. Bears carelessly splash in the waters, bite down onto the fish, and there's lunch. But these salmon keep swimming. They swim through rapids, jumping up small waterfalls, achieving amazing height, but if they leap at the wrong place, at th wrong time, there's a bear waiting for them, hir jaw hanging open. The fish may wiggle and squirm, but there's only one fate. But they keep swimming. Night and day, sun and rain, they swim upstream, swim through foaming waters, swim between sharp rocks, swim under the gaze of predators. At last, they arrive, they lay their eggs in the shallow waters. But it isn't over yet: birds open their jaws and scoop the eggs up, eating them, swallowing the hard work of these salmon. And our beloved salmon die. They've completed their life mission, and slowly their rotting bodies are washed ashore, decomposed, forgotten.

How does a creature evolve to so inconveniently reproduce? Couldn't things have been easier, less painful for salmon? Why not evolve to lay eggs in the sea, or in the downstream waters? Why not change, mutate, become something simpler? Why would evolution create something so complex, so difficult? And, if there's a benevolent God, why would he want the suffering of salmon?

And humans. Why must we love, and feel, and wait, and search? Why so complex, with so much pain, so unwise and inconvenient? No science, no religions can explain love. The only explanation I can think of is that there must be some malevolent deity, looking down at us, and laughing at the suffering of salmon - and humans.