applespice: it is a sparkly fairy ([funny] get one sin free)
My name is Allison and let's get real - this may or may not be the 915711713th of these introductions you have read. Respecting this, I will attempt to make this as interesting as I possibly can, and I hope you understand that if I fail, at least my heart was in the right place. Mom always said that's what mattered, after all (though admittedly Mom and I conflict on any number of Key Life Points so it's possible I'm just throwing her a bone with this one).

I am twenty-three years old, a high school English teacher, and impressively liberal despite being raised as a particularly vehement and particularly conservative breed of fundamentalist Christian. Those are the barest of bones when it comes to my life, but I thought I'd start out with the basics and expound from there, adding in all of the organs, muscle, and (let's face it) fatty tissue as we go along.

People say I'm young for what I do, and as far as I can tell they're right. Though I'd never describe myself as a go-getter, somehow I do manage to get things done and fast. Some people interpret this as high achievement, and I don't generally disabuse them of the notion even if I do think they're completely off the rails crazy for saying so. Mostly I think it's because I hate lingering over things; I'd rather just get it done and move along, preferably to doing a whole lot of nothing. I flew through undergrad at the University of Arkansas, and when I waded out into the murky waters of our present economic climate with naught but a BA in English to keep me afloat, I decided to go to graduate school to become a teacher. It was self-preservation, really, not some kind of noble calling. Somehow I made it through and was hired this year at a low-income school in a suburb of Dallas.

Teaching is insane. I feel like I'm insane just for doing it, especially at such a young age. I may be twenty-three, but I look about seventeen - something that both teachers and students delight in telling me. My students, by the way, are bugnuts crazy. All sixteen-year-olds are, in their own way, but somehow I'd forgotten that in the seven years I've spent apart from actually being sixteen. Mostly I just try to make it through the day without roundhouse kicking a child in the face. Mostly I succeed. Mostly I even like the kids, but that is generally when they're out of my vision and hearing.

I think we've covered my first two bones, so let's hit the third. I was born and raised Pentecostal, a fundamentalist Christian faith that involves dancing in the aisles, no pants for the ladies, tongue-talkin', and a fair amount of prophesy and exorcism for added flavor. My parents trained up this child in the way they thought she should go since birth, and I didn't even realize there was something distinctly rotten in the state of Denmark until I reached the age of sixteen. Suddenly the light came on and I began to see all of the religiosity as a kind of well-meaning brainwashing. My parents just think I got sick of wearing frumpy denim skirts, having ratty-ass hair down my back, and being unable to cover up my adolescent proliferation of acne with makeup, but it was much more than that. I started really paying attention to what people were saying, and how they used the Bible to justify all kinds of ridiculousness. All the isms reared their ugly heads and I found myself unimpressed with Pentecostalogic.

So I started asking questions. Let me tell you, people, fundamentalist Christians don't like questions. They follow the circular logic that "the Bible is true because it says in the Bible that the Bible is true," and they don't really peer any further than those pages, or even into them most of the time. When I asked people to justify the things they said, they'd always refer me back to the Bible. Sadly, I needed a little more than that.

I made my formal break with Pentecost when I was in college. A few relatives tried to plan some religious interventions for me, and I have no doubt that many a tear was shed over my heathen ways, but I haven't backed down yet and I don't plan to. As much as I respect the fact that the Pentecostal church inspires quite a bit of joy and even a feeling of redemption in people, I don't and can't agree with their policies or beliefs.

Nowadays I'm a free agent religiously. I'm figuring things out in my own time, but there's plenty about my past that makes me hesitant to explore organized religion. My main focus is on being a decent person (remember, I'm really trying not to kick those kids in the face) and living my life in a way that makes me happy. I do an okay job. I'm in the middle of the best relationship of my life, I've got a steady paycheck and a place of my own, and I get to cut loose and live debaucherously every once in awhile. It'll do, pig. It'll do.

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How About Them Apples?

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