I was always an academically adventurous teenager.
I organized anti-apartheid events as a kid. I walked a picket line as a child. But I also did my research, and had no trouble writing or cold calling people to find out as much as I could so I could enter the eye of the storm and have a look around to see the situation around me.
Unlike some people who only get involved once a bullet grazes their own backside, I never needed that incentive to delve into the deepest truths of the universe.
But as an optimist.
Let me rephrase that: as a real optimist.
The fake optimist put a sunny spin on bad things, pretending they are good. I saw the bad, faced it as it was, and knew it could be remedied and the good could have a chance to grow and thrive once the bad was dealt with.
So even as someone under twenty, I felt humanity and compassion for other people's suffering, and thought if I did my share, or at least knew how to get out of the way, everyone would do better, and the world would evolve and progress.
But then war broke out in another country, but one where I had roots, and when I did my research, the state of Western journalism was so disgusting and traumatizing, that it changed me as a person.
It didn't turn me bitter or angry, but there was no way I was going to stand for that kind of garbage, either.
The evidence was right in front of me in black and white.
I was studying psychology as a young, single, attractive young woman.
I could have just shrugged my shoulders, and do what society expected me to do: use my looks to land a profitable husband, and be a bored housewife/stay-at-mall mom, and let other people handle stuff while I just loitered aimlessly at HomeSense looking for things to deflect my attention away from politics, and the heavy thinking because heaven forbid some man out there think that I was a bitter and uppity woman who had the nerve to say Authority was made up of dysfunctional meddlers and losers.
Except that is not my style, and I have no filter on my mouth whatsoever.
Any idiot could get married. That is not an accomplishment.
Some people are so bad at marriage, that they become very good at doing it multiple times.
So I decided I was going to do something very different: I was going to get a job as a journalist so I could actually use that profession as my own laboratory.
It is one thing when you go into a job with rose-coloured glasses, endure garbage you think is only temporary until you Make It, become bitter and disillusioned, and then march out of it or kicked kicked out, and then tell the world how rotten it was all along.
And I did want filters on my eyes because I don't have one on my mouth.
So I thought, If I go into the profession with no filters and no expectations, and study it, then I can be objective and empirical, going in seeking opportunities to conduct experiments as a researcher and my own test subject and control group.
That was a rare opportunity with lots of possibilities to keep me stimulated, on my toes, and having the time of my eccentric life doing it.
And so, Alexandra Kitty became a journalist/experimenter.
And boy, I found out more than I ever bargained for in the process. It took years, and what I discovered changed me, but not for the worse.
I learned how to get into the most invisible and darkest of places to find how a profession operated -- or didn't all while learning how not to fall into the traps that corrupted those who fell for the ruses and became corrupted by ego and vanity.
Most people had no idea what I was actually doing. My mother and grandmother knew.
And then I wrote a couple of books and stopped being a journalist, which was a huge relief.
And for a while, I literally had to recalibrate myself and did some other eccentric things in order to discover the meaning of life.
I was in my 30s and people kept asking me about that whole finding a husband thing, but the urge to marry just wasn't there. I was too exotic, eccentric, and enigmatic, and while I had my fun, I needed my space because while so many were domesticated by nature, I never was.
I put no pressure on myself, but I knew my work wasn't done. Not by a long shot.
So I started a venture called Chaser News.
I had my heart in the future.
But a female-run hard news venture had no backing from anyone, and I was already detecting more than just a decline of journalism, but a collapse.
I also started thinking about the things I couldn't when I was studying journalism.
And Chaser News transmuted into a Matriarchal Storytelling venture called A Dangerous Woman Story Studio.
But also the book When Journalism was a Thing.
Journalism died. You can churn out stories, but that is not journalism. It is white noise, filler, and propaganda. You now have journalists whining how they are being treated in the big bad world, never once considering how they did the same thing to other people, both as individuals or collectives.
We're being shut out!
Did you ever think of all the people your industry shut out for no good reason over the decades?
Of course not.
Chaser News I placed on the back burner, and A Dangerous Woman was put on hiatus so I could write When Journalism was a Thing.
And in the mix, came F.R.E.E.D., which took my previous twenty-plus years and made it into something different.
In the process, I was delayed. It was not my doing, but the delays were colossal, and literally not only beyond my control, but completely unforeseeably out from left field, right field, front, back, up, down, middle, in every direction.
I still work at it every single day, but I was slowed down.
But I marched on, like a soldier who pushes forward because optimism and confidence compels you to not give in to the cold terror around you.
It was as if both God and the Devil conspired against me, and wanted to see just how hard they could slap me around and stop me.
I kept pushing forwards and upwards. I had no time for any of it, and when you have every excuse in the world to back off and retreat, and you don't, you know you truly have confidence in your own ability, and you know you truly believe in what you see as the remedy.
I am in my mid-40s now, and I have no signs of slowing down. People more than half my age seem like duds and geezers to me.
And real snores who want guarantees and a safe, trouble-free existence where their servant elders clean up all the messes.
If that's the life you want to settle for, then go shove yourself in a nursing home and chew your pabulum and let your PSW change your underpants.
Just get out of the way and settle for trash.
I haven't even started yet. There are other adventures waiting for me.
No guts. No glory.
I am out to transform the structure of communicating and researching.
A new adventure. A new way of doing things.
You don't like it? Too bad for you.
Don't expect me to be fooled by your self-serving assessments of me just because you stuck to someone else's scripts and feel threatened by my adlibtures.
Life is short.
And it is meant to be lived meaningfully and productively.
With love and truth. With bravery.
And willingness to transmute yourself in order to transform the world around you as you glide and soar to new places by creating new paths to different and better worlds...