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Straight Edge Interview Project: Daisy AKA Echo: She/Her El Paso, TX

Instagram: xechox24

Tell us about you? What do you do for a living? Do you have any pets, hobbies, pet projects?

My name is Daisy, but I go by Call Sign Echo. El Paso, TX. You may call me Her, She, Lady, Dude, Yo Chick, etc. as long as it involves food, adventure, thrift stores, or music.

I work at a Health Food Store and I am a Gamer Girl, Subaru Girl, an Advocate For Domestic Violence Survivors, Cosplayer, and I am a “retired” skater girl.

I have a fantastic little dog ( little to me) 45-50lb GSD mix. That keeps me on my toes. Her name is Lily Chaos.

I am in the midst of a rebuild of my Auto Nat X ’08 Forester. Might pull the Trans and Engine and rebuild to a 5-speed turbo. Yes, I love to get down and greasy but that is a little out of my mechanical expertise, and will let the local Subi Club guys do it.

I am currently working on a novel entitled Echo’s Nineteen.

Favorite straight edge (or non-straight edge) bands?

I had the pleasure of living in the PNW for 25 and got to meet lots of wonderful local artists..funny things I didn’t know they were Straight Edge or even in the music scene until I left..

I didn’t care who they were or what prestige they were afforded, it was more like “oh that’s my regular who is a tattoo artist” or “I get to see my friend at the grocery story today”

Several of them were a huge part of my encouragement, and I quitely saved my life. I thank the Universe for them every day.

I would say though If I were to choose.. X Jr Edge, Cyper X, and the rest of their friends, crew, and label were such an inspiration that keep my head from falling Beneath the darkness when the world got to be too much and helped me stay on the correct path…Thank you.

And Daniel Gun is super fun to blast at the car shows, heh.

What is your definition of straight edge?

I Don’t Drink. I Don’t Smoke, and I Don’t Do Drugs and I Don’t Fuck Around.

Where do you see the straight edge scene today?

I don’t see them. They hide in the shadows, keeping mostly to themselves.

But rarely you might catch a glimpse of one out of the corner of your eye when you least expect it.. an X discretely tucked under a sleeve or a concert shirt hiding under a hoody.

I have found a few though and dragged them from the muck and mire, dusted them off, hugged them, and set them on the correct path like someone did to me.

I don’t understand the Wrestling aspect of it.. but I am grateful for an introduction to the lifestyle. things morph and grow as we all learn more

I love that it’s hugely political ( it always was in my opinion ) and enjoy seeing the world from other countries’ points of view than the propaganda fed to is through today’s “fake news”.

There’s an ongoing debate on whether one can be straight edge without being a part of the music scene, what’s your thoughts on this?

I have been so far removed from the music scene for decades that it is non-topic to me.

Music is a subjective taste. I have heard crap Straight Edge “Punk” and fantastic Straight Edge hip hop. It’s the message put forth that influences me.

Covid Killed all Concerts where I live and it still hasn’t recovered..but I have hope.

What are some funny/common misconceptions people have about you being straight edge?

That iI am Mormon ( which I love because I have several friends that are) even though I have the mouth of a sailor, 19 tattoos, and have a huge wardrobe preference including boots and braces, 1930s dresses, crazy costumes ( yes i do wear them in public like a happy 5 yr old 3 weeks after Halloween)

That I am quite terrifying.. I totally am not.

That I must be a racist, lesbian, or a man-hater…Nope so wrong.

That my resting bitch face means I am mad at or hate someone.

And stuff like that..

What are some challenges you have faced when interacting with other people who are also edge? If you haven’t had any challenges, tell us some challenges you’ve faced when interacting with people who are not edge?

In dealing with “Non- Edge” people it involves a lot of sadness.. I see their destruction and I want to help. I want to show them what it could be like to live drug / alcohol-free and have lost a few to depression and overdoses it kills me watching them drown.

In dealing with Straight Edge people ( especially men) it’s like I am not good enough. That I can’t be one of the boys, that I can’t go play in the circle pit or hold a politically charged conversation

I chalk it up to societies conditioning on the male psyche and try to give them the chance to see the wonderful me and “accept me into the group”

For the most part as a Woman in Straight Edge, I have felt like I was a Hoody/ Wallet holder.. an accessory… if you will.

Is your diet influenced or informed by your choice to be straight edge i.e. organic, antibiotic infused meat, genetically modified foods, vegan, vegetarian?

I am Vegan, but not Organic. I can tell when I have eaten corrupted food and it makes me violently ill. You are what you eat, and with tonnes of food/preservative/ chemical allergies I am very careful about what I put in my body…or I pay the price.

What’s your straight edge story? Was there a key moment that made you realize straight edge is the way you want to live your life? How old were you? How did you find out about straight edge, was there someone in the community that introduced you, or were you introduced to it through people/bands, etc? What drew you to it?

When I was 16 I dated a pro-Canadian hockey player’s son. He was quite awful I assure you but he introduced me to Straight Edge and Hardcore via Minor Threat, NYCxHC, Christian Straight Edge, and was in a punk band

He eventually broke Edge, join the Navy. And was lost to the world.

He did more damage than good at the time but what he gave me was a glimmer of where I was to be.

I was Straight Edge for 27 yrs. and when I finally fell it nearly buried me.

Define what straight edge means to you? Has this changed over the years?

I didn’t understand Straight Edge when I was first introduced to it and to be honest I was a follower. I felt superior to the drunken high school hordes and got bloody knuckles trying to dissuade several jerks into not smoking around me.

These days I see why people use and abuse and feel more compassion and are more supportive and try to share my story instead of “bashing” my point across.

” Jail sucks” Just say no

Do you consider yourself an activist? What is/are your cause(s), and how have you been working to advance them?

Yes. I am a domestic violence survivor that was in a 13-year Narcissistic relationship with a Straight Edge man.

I was his co-dependant and was addicted to that “abuse cycle” and it nearly cost me my life breaking free of that.

I am in the process of publishing my book on how I survived to encourage others to take the first steps in breaking free..

Even if it means losing everything you hold so dear..even if it means breaking edge to save your life.which I had to so my Previous would see me as stained, corrupted, and a viable abuse outlet any longer.

What, if anything, keeps you committed to the straight edge lifestyle?

The 13 inch above the influence X on my torso with “Enough” across it.

When I look down it is a constant reminder that I would never allow myself to be made to feel like I wasn’t ” Good Enough”, “Smart Enough”, “Pretty Enough”, “Straight Edge Enough” to be anyone’s company.

And the Music.. Always the music.

When I had nothing ..including my music. I still that that reminder of the Promise I made to myself, that everything was temporary and I wasn’t alone.

What is something you didn’t think you would struggle with by claiming edge?

That it would be near to impossible in finding “the Others”

And that someone you loved and trusted would turn their back on you like you didn’t matter.

What you do for stress relief instead of drinking/drugs, tips for peer pressure?

Yoga, working on my car, cooking, training my dog, walking/exercising, karaoke, and hanging out with my friend who is going through his own sobriety struggles

Motivating others is huge in my world.

And gratitude.. always gratitude.

How was it being straight edge in this pandemic?

To be honest I was in jail. Lockdown 23 hrs a day for 240 days.. 10 months for assault on a Peacekeeper.

Trying to convince the guards and nurses that I would not take their psych meds but would do Yoga instead was a daily struggle.

It wasn’t until I planked for 6 mins that they started to encourage me and cheer me on

Have you ever considered breaking edge? What were the circumstances, and what changed your mind?

I was Straight Edge for 27 years. That’s longer than some of the Straight Edge people I know, maybe even my dear reader.

I broke Edge to save my life. I was suffering through constant domestic abuse, workplace harassment, a miscarriage, the loss of my mother, a car accident, caregiving a cancer fighter, and suffered 2 stress heart attacks, a mini-stroke, and possibly an aneurism due to stress.

I chose to drink instead of drowning. Quite literally jump of the Narrows Bridge. I didn’t want to die. I wanted the Chaos to stop.

So I began to drink instead. and it was what I could liken to Losing my Religion. I was never big on Christianity I felt it was more of a way to control the masses than as a form of hope.

But I know what it feels like to lose it.

For 18 terrible, terrifying months I drank.

In the grand scheme of substance abuse, it was a joke.. an insult to true addicts/users. I probably drank 3 cases of apple cider, 3 bottles of absinthe, and maybe smoked 4 cloves total.

Nobody gives a shit about that.. be we do..and my ex did, he considered me on par with meth addicts, heroin fiends, junkies, and whores and would scream ” if you aren’t now you never were” he eventually decided to divorce me because of it, and I found out that Straight Edge not only a still a thing but a movement in political awareness that I was blinded from while living with the worse the “Right” had to offer. because of that family, I dusted off my Protest sign, my pussy hat, and waged war the likes many people didn’t know I had in me. I wasn’t broken. I was silenced and I tore that muzzle off and I came at them Teeth bared.

Have you ever stopped being edge for a period of time, and if so why? Did you regret doing so? What brought you back? If you have come back, how do you view your commitment (i.e. for life, for now)?

On July 1 2018, I took back Edge after living 18 months in the “Normal” world. I thought I was last of my kind.. Like Doctor Who or the Last Unicorn.. Trying to blend in with the ” real world”

I owe my “Redemption” to a quite angry blond man with a Huge Xon the side. of his shave head and a big red dog that gave my voice, courage, and determination back

If you are in a relationship is your partner straight edge, or have you had a previous relationship with someone who was not straight edge? What, if any, challenges have you faced relating to your lifestyle/choices?

I have dated 2 Straight Edge and to be honest were incredibly abusive, racist, sexist, elitist, but I never gave up home on finding someone that would be my perfect match.

I am currently dating a man who is going through sobriety. like me, he was introduced to straight edge at 16 but chose to follow the darker path.

His struggle to cold turkey 2 decades’ worth of substance abuse is a huge inspiration to me just as my story of survival is his daily motivator as well.

If your partner is edge do you have similar views/outlooks about straight edge? What are some examples of ideas/beliefs that you agree and/or disagree on?

He is remembering what it was to take a stance, stand up for what is correct, and is quite the bold individual himself to bust out in a routine traffic stop and tell the officers that he didn’t like cops, that they are corrupt and murderers while I was being frisked just days after my charges were dismissed. Boldy declared we were just on the way to karaoke and there was no probable cause.

If that shit isn’t SxE I need a new perspective.

Has your family and social life been negatively or positively impacted? Have you faced or are you facing any specific challenges because of your lifestyle choices? If your family/friends are unsupportive, how do you deal?

I have little interaction with my family and my new friends are all about it and I am a huge inspiration to them

If you are single, have you found it difficult to date?

Date apps are a joke. Go out and talk to people and be patient.. someone is out there for you. you just might move 1000 miles away to find them though.

Keep in perspective that Everything is Temporary and enjoy what you have for as long as it’s healthy.

Some straight edge women/girls I have talked to have told me that they feel isolated and that they find it difficult to relate to people outside of the straight edge scene. Is this something you can relate to?

Everyone has a story.. You can find something to relate in everyone if given half a chance.

I think living among “the normies”, being incarcerated, and staying in a homeless shelter really opened my eyes to the phrase. ” I am just like you..I just have better things to do”.

If you are straight edge and a parent, how has being straight edge informed how you parent and/or relate to other parents?

I am child-free and an Anti- Natalist.

How do you explain your lifestyle to others outside of the scene? Do you find it difficult? What’s your elevator pitch?

I throw up my X’d wrist and declare; loud; proud and boldly: I am Straight Edge, I Don’t Drink, I Don’t Smoke, and I Don’t Do Drugs.

If they inquire past that I go into details..they usually don’t.. heh.

Over the past decade or so individuals in recovery have stumbled upon the straight edge lifestyle and it has really spoken to them. Do you feel that the straight edge community has been welcoming to those in recovery? Do you have mixed feelings? Strong Feelings?

I have minimal interaction with the Community other than Facebook and Instagram but my friends that I have in it are very supportive.. wanting to see everyone succeed.

How do you feel your straight edge commitment plays into the bigger social justice movement for gender equity?

XsisterhoodX is a huge motivator to “get the guys to wake up and see us as “Equals”

The gender divide is not only a plague on society but within the scene, itself.

I believe there will always be ” closet Machismo” in any environment where ever you.

Have you ever had a negative experience in the scene related to your gender?

I always felt like an outsider even before I went Edge. To me, it’s Gender Bias in general.

Straight edge and the associated music scene have long been male-dominated. What do you see as a woman/girls role in the scene? How has this role changed since you have been involved and what changes would you like to see?

My Previous said best. ” Women aren’t funny.. that he was funny” and that sums up the male-dominated machismo I grew up with.

By the way.. I think I am funny as fuck.. but YMMV

I am Grateful that XsisterhoodX and Grienvance Gamer Girls are there to support us…To help us find our voice.

What if any challenges have you faced that are specifically related to being a female in a male-dominated scene?

As a prior Skateboarder / Subaru owner you have to work extra hard to “prove yourself” with no support.

Mansplaining is bleh so annoying.. show me.. give advice but allow me to tey, fail, and then show me a different way.

Do you feel the straight edge community has done enough to advance gender/race/social issues?

Complacency is a Society killer.

Is the scene as inclusive as it likes to think it is? Do you think there’s work to be done? If so, what would you like to see change?

Oh no. It is very restrictive. I was so desperate to find my ” family” that I settled and I wasted 13 valuable years of my life on it.

Do you have any questions that you think we should be asking but didn’t?

Would “You” look down on someone that “Broke Edge”?

Are there any extenuating circumstances that you would find acceptable to “Break Edge” and come back? Would you ever see them as “Good Enough” to be welcomed back into the family? Why?

Would you ever date a Sober Addict as a Straight Edger knowing where they were and the potential that they might relapse.. Could you be strong “Enough” not to enable them?

Mother, wife, small business owner.

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