Dec 15, 2008
Can you really call it a discussion if it's just me writing for other people, strangers and some I know to read at their pleasure and comment or not?? Probably not.
In any case, I made my turn and directly to my left a small pick up crowded with three large people in it also turned left- AND immediately swerved into my lane. I beeped and swerved out of the drivers way, stopping, and allowing him to miss the collision and scoot in front of me, cross over another lane of traffic and pull into a parking place. The driver was furiously tugging at his steering wheel in order to avoid the collision and maneuver away- the placement of all three people smashed into a small truck did not allow him to make full circles with his hands- seeing that his elbows would strike the person sitting in the middle- not a safe situation. As the driver corrected his truck, and sidled over to the parking spot, he lifted his left hand in , what I thought was to be an apology wave- the kind you make when you inadvertently cut some one off, - NO- he instead flipped me the bird and proceeded to park. As there was no traffic behind me, I stopped in the middle lane of the street, backed up a touch so I could see the driver and rolled down my passenger window. I gestured back to him- a "what the hell?" kind of hand in the air deal with an incredulous look on my face. He gestured his finger higher, as if I didn't quite see it clearly enough. He opened his door and looked at me- I yelled- "There are two turn lanes!" "Nope", he shook his head at me, his passengers craning their necks to see beyond his body to see me and hear what I had to say for myself. "Yes, there are, go back and look for yourself- you almost caused an accident!" For some reason, he decided I must have had a point- he lowered his head and said "I will"- in a somewhat apologetic manner- and ambled off to the sidewalk.
It irked me that this guy had the audacity to flip me off after he almost caused an accident. That was the uncivil part. Even if you think you aren't at fault, what gives with flipping someone off? Why attack, when a raised hand as an offer of an apology,or admittance of wrongdoing would suffice?
#2. It was like the scene out of "Fried Green Tomatoes", when the middle aged woman is circling the supermarket parking lot waiting for a space to open up, she spots one about to open up, and some young girls zoom into it while she's waiting.
I'm driving downtown searching for a parking spot this evening (with the rest of the town- two large events within a close proximity at the same time in a small downtown). I spy a place that is being vacated, stop and wait for the person to leave and a car carrying two college girls makes an illegal u-turn in the middle of the road and jumps into the place I was waiting for. Now, I will have to admit, I neglected to have my turn signal on, but it was clear that I was waiting for the spot. I fought the urge to ram into their car (might have had something to do with a car full of kids and my MIL in the front seat), but wait until the driver emerges. She pauses, not jumping out of her car right away, while my MIL looks at me like I might pull a gun out from under my seat- not quite sure what I might be doing. The girl gets out of her car and I, again, yell through my now open passenger side window. I said something really clever like "excuse me", or "hey"- I can't remember now- and she responds " I'm late to my final". In my eloquence and wit I say "Well, you should have left your house earlier" and drove off- I sound like such a mother...
#3. While attending a school Holiday sing this evening, my two toddlers got a bit restless and started spreading out a bit more, taking up some space in the very generous aisle. They were not alone, as there were plenty of other small children and a few grown ups littered in the isle. A young boy who attends our school was on his way back to his seat. There was some movement from some of the folks hanging in the aisle, but Julia, being tired, was standing stock still, her b.c. (think lovey cloth) hanging from her hand, touching the ground, watching the events around her. The boy, a large built seventh grader stopped, and when unable to negotiate his way around the obstacles in his path, stooped over a bit and with both hands charged at Julia, lifting her a bit at impact, and sailed her through the air where she landed on her back, in silent scream mode.
Obstacle removed, the boy continued on his path back to his seat. Several adults around me gasped as I got to Julia's rolling body saying- "It's okay, It's okay". Julia and I went to the lobby for a bit, while she calmed down and recovered from her wallop. She was fine in a few minutes and we returned to our seats.
This event, the intentional hurting of my daughter is the excusable one- The young man who plowed into her and took her down, was trying to find his way- you could feel him try to negotiate the path and I could truly understand the gesture. Really, he picked the easiest target to remove to completely clear his path, rational, really. Most other children and adults could have found their way around, as the path really was not the difficult to navigate- the isle being very wide with only a few people scattered in his way.
But this young man, generally travels to school with a full time aide and an aide dog. He's a generally happy guy in my oldest sons class, who happens to be Autistic.
I mentioned the event to his father- just to relay the information. The evening was charged with stimulation, held off school grounds, the boys aide was not with him... so many good reasons.
What, do you suppose, were the other peoples reasons???
Dec 12, 2008
After 6 weeks with no washing machine and many discussions with technicians, supervisors, various departments,being hung up on several times (due to disconnections), a few irate words and many hours on the phone, I found the right person.
The new machine arrived this afternoon PAID IN FULL! We had to spring for the platform. The kids were fascinated by the window.
Never so happy to do laundry...two loads completed. Yahoooooo!
Dec 3, 2008
Nov 26, 2008
Whatever the reason, I like to do things myself- it's my first choice and preference. Having a large family, with little kids, and a large house with lots of toilets to clean, and pets, and responsibilities has really made a dent in that practice.
I have become comfortable with accepting and asking for help- Well, comfortable may not be the right word- perhaps tolerable will do. Tolerable of accepting help. Since we are leaving town tomorrow for the Turkey day celebration at my folks house, I had to call my neighbor and friend to throw some food at our dogs Friday morning. We'll be back by Friday evening so it's only one day- not a huge deal. But I hate to ask, I do.
And when I have to ask someone to pick up my son from school, or I can't hop in the car and pick up my daughter's friend to come over for a play date, I hate to ask the other person to do it for me.
Borrowing things, asking for childcare, calling up a friend to see if they can lend a hand fixing my sprinkler system- it should be easier. But every time, I grit my teeth.
I've accepted the necessity in my life to ask for favors, ask for help- but I don't like it.
On the other hand, anytime I can do anything for anybody, I'm there. And I think that is apparent- so that's good. At least it makes me feel better.
Nov 25, 2008
Ruby has fallen for 'MY, Juh Juh, MY, Juh Juh'. She has just started to get interested in t.v. and thinks Curious George is the best thing ever. We've taped a few shows for the older kids since they enjoy this show as well. However, I can only take so much of the the same show over and over again- so this week we are exploring PBS.
The point of this ramble is the kids have been hooked into PBS- but Ruby keeps institing on George... We watched a bit of Super Why. Grace is watching and then says "Something must be wrong with his diction." Uh, okay... Since when does she recognize diction isssues??? She's 8!
Nov 24, 2008
Bella does get a bit brighter- but not much. The story is still compelling in a weird way. And it is still a simple soap opera. Makes me think about General Hospital in the early 80's, when the good guys had to save the world from freezing over, or some such nonsense.
I am eagerly anticipating finishing the series- but not in the 'can't wait, but don't want it to be over' kind of way. I'll be okay with it being over.
We shall see how it all ends up...
Nov 23, 2008
We see Laura and her girls from time to time, since she and her husband moved back to California. We talk on the phone. Most recently we have become facebook friends. We have know each other since we were seventeen years old. A lifetime ago. Laura and I lived on the same floor in the dorms at college. Who would have predicted that our friendship would have endured this many years. Not me. Not at 17, anyway. I have pictures in my head of those dorm days. Laughing, drinking, falling down, boyfriends (hers, not mine), vomiting, parties, talking, laughing...riding bikes, listening to her say hello to all the animals as she rode by, cooking meals- later when we each lived off campus- telling her I was in love with another woman, and then visiting each other after college. I can see a few different places she lived, feel the environment and the youth- the settling in time. She went to Africa with the Peace Corps- met her love, came home, married (always a bridesmaid...), started a family. Settling in all over again- different role, different time, mother, wife, friend.
With Michèle, I talk to her all the time, she lives a few states away. She was one of many Michelle's in highschool- she was the only one with and accent and single l- but in highschool all of the Michelle's went by their last name. I've never really called her anything else. We've know each other since we were 13! She was in the upper crust of highschool- one of the top clique. My first memory of her is her making fun of me sitting in front of my locker, reading a book- she even knocked it out of my hands. Bitch. Somehow at Halloween that freshman year we ended up hanging out in a large group with one another. As seniors, we were both in student council. Acquaintances, sure- friends...not good friends, certainly. Then we ended up at college together. She came a semester after me and lived a few floors up. I ran into her at parties- helped her back to the dorm one night with blood running down her knee. She ended up living with me and many others- during my Junior year of college. She was the first I told about falling in love with another woman, which she accepted with no judgement, she helped me get to a friends funeral. She forgave me for setting up her turntable when she didn't want anyone to touch it. She introduced me to Al Jarreau.
She and Laura lived together after we did. I guess I had a hand in that- introducing them to one another- although I don't remember that. Michèle left college and went on to pursue her Master's degree gaining confidence in herself along the way. She to met her love, moved on, started a family.
Amazing, now, to get together with these women and our families. To think back- to wonder ahead. To know that they will always be there for me, and I for them.
For it to be so easy to fall back into rhythm with each other, differently, but the same, briefly together.
I must add a picture- but have to find it first...
Nov 22, 2008
It's easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people
Living for today...
Imagine there's no countries
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace...
You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will be as one
Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing all the world...
You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will live as one
Nov 20, 2008
And then it is also mildly irritating the way she fawns over Edward's looks- he's so damn perfect. But I chalk it up to her characters age. Also, so far in book three- Edward won't 'let' Bella do some things . And, and, let's not forget that he is cold- I mean like body temp is below normal- she frequently describes him as icy. Sounds fun too cuddle with, huh?
So, so far we have a picture of a smart, but acting stupid, 17/18 year old girl who thinks her boyfriend is too good/handsome/perfect for her and is seemingly okay with the fact that he restrains her activities.
I'm still enjoying the read.
Nov 19, 2008
Nov 18, 2008
Nov 17, 2008
As I read these books, I am reminded of what it is like to fall in love, certainly. The initial rush and and deep longing and desire. I can see that, however the characters are 17! Even Edward, although immortal, was changed into a vampire at that age- so emotionally, I would put him at the same age, even though he has lived many more years past 17. The raw and new love of a teenager-is easily won over by a more mature love. I find it very easy to dismiss the passion these two feel for one another as a first love. As a result, it reads like a teen romance, nothing more.
The books don't have any of the sophistication that I was expecting or even multiple layers to investigate. They are very straightforward. I find myself comparing them to the Harry Potter series. The Harry Potter books were much more complex.
So far, I am most interested to see how it all ends up, and feel compelled to read all four. The second book, New Moon, has been more interesting- more characters to add some more interest (without giving anything away- I'd hate to spoil it for someone else).
We shall see what book three brings. I haven't gotten a hold of book four yet, and may not, since lemonade was accidentally spilled on book two- oops. I have offered to replace it- it's not ruined, just a tiny bit wrinkled and damp...
Nov 16, 2008
Okay, what's with all the people standing at every street corner holding signs?
It seems every major intersection in town has people pacing back and forth holding or wearing signs.
Hot Pizza-$ 5.00!
Furniture Store Going Out of Business!
Department Store Liquidating- 40%-60% Off!
Homes For Sale! on a huge arrow pointing or twirling in circles, depending on whose holding it at the moment.
Some person dressed like a fruit (real actual piece of fruit) waving and jumping up and down- Come On In To My Deli!!!
Is this the new fad to get our attention? Real live human beings advertising?
What I find most disturbing about these folks, is that most of the ones I have seen look tattered and tired. One guy is always outfitted with a gas mask, seriously, hat, long pants (even in the sweltering 100˚ heat we get in the summer), and a long sleeve sweatshirt. I pass him the most frequently and I always wish I had a job to offer ,that would get him away from the smog that I assume he is protecting himself from...
And then I think- hey we could use some extra money- I bet I could get one of those jobs!
Nov 15, 2008
After a half hour I was much better- whoo-wee though, that was a killer. Today I've just stuck with 4 every 4 hours and it's kept the pain and spasms at bay.
I've started doing childcare for an 8 week old, and he's a sling boy... I'm hoping it's not the sling...
Käri went to a baby shower this morning and I didn't want to chance my back getting all crazy so we did not go to the 8 rally in town. I was bummed about that...
I did hear about another event. It's called Day without a Gay. Everyone can join in the fun of calling in Gay to work, school, whatever, and then, if they are so inclined, to donate their time to service. You can see the link here.
Nov 14, 2008
When dealing with bills, various accounts, doctors etc, we can pretend to be one another.
Today, I went through the ever growing, never ceasing pile of papers on the counter. I encountered several bills that needed to dealt with, dare I say, immediately. It's under my job description as homemaker to deal with these things and I had been neglecting my duties-
I called up the folks, gave my assumed name, SSN, password, birthdate, mother's maiden name- the works. And was promptly allowed in to deal with it. I love that.
Nov 13, 2008
The main focus of tonight's story was about a woman who abandoned her 18 year old at the hospital. A young lady who had a history of mental disorders and who had been physically abused and then left alone with her, dead, biological mother for a week when she was a young girl. A young lady who had been adopted- I assume from the foster care system. A young lady who has now been "abandoned" twice, by her two mothers... a young lady with mental illness.
How does someone recover from that and move on? Is there any hope that this young lady will mature into a socially acceptable adult?? I wonder.
What goes with out mentioning is the serious problems that lie within the foster and adoptive care systems.
The adoptive mother claims she was unable to get help for daughter- And felt that this way the authorities would be forced to get the girl help. Nebraska refused to take custody of this young lady, since legally she is an adult. Where is she now? The article reports that the mother left with the daughter. I wonder how that is working out? You can read it for yourself here.
Nebraska is re-working their safe haven law to include the word infant. It is currently written as child.
Nov 11, 2008
He came, he went- the parts will be here on the 21st- he thinks. Lovely. Know how much laundry we'll have by then?? Last time this happened, in the middle of it all, we did 26 loads...
I have a long list of bloggers that I visit, when I can. In the last two weeks or so I have been so absorbed with the 8 campaign, all I can read is anything related to the Proposition. I've been missing all the funny and inspirational stories and writers and am getting a bit bogged down with the 8 talk- Yet, I can't seem to tear myself away.
A few people have expressed their condolences and said- "well, you can't win them all"- my response- "Yes, you can, oh yes, you can!"
I'm trying to move on here- but it consumes me. Facebook threads, blogs, newspaper articles, editorials, courage campaign, EQCA, Youtube... yes on 8 and no on 8 . I want to hear what they all say- both sides. I think it's an effort to understand where the yes on 8 folks are coming from. As much as I firmly believe that everyone is entitled to their own opinion, I am having a very different reaction to this. And in this case, I guess I'm willing to concede that certain people have religious beliefs that do not allow them to think outside the box. They are entrenched in their faith to the point that they are unable or unwilling to allow another point of view to be reasonable.
See, if we were talking about a proposition that was to amend the constitution, say Amendment 1- limiting the free exercise of religion. I think, perhaps, it would not pass. The religious folks would be all over taking away their constitutional rights.
But that is where the argument falls apart for me. Regardless of personal or religious beliefs- an amendment taking my rights away is wrong. Pure and simple. Yes on 8 was, and is, wrong. And I know I've said it before, but I cannot get over people in my community, in our school circle, people who know me, know my family, had Käri as their child's first grade teacher, who voted yes. I can forgive it- slowly. I can buy their religious excuses as the reason behind their vote. I can't or, admittedly, won't forget.
So I guess 8 is going to haunt me for a while. Feel free to shield your eyes.
Nov 9, 2008
Nov 8, 2008
Everywhere I go I hear women talking about the Twilight series books. Are they really that good? Some women seem to like the "soft porn" in the books others just love the story. I haven't even looked up what they are about or asked anyone really the story line is- I just can't escape the constant chatter about these damn books. The suspense is driving me nutty. Gotta read 'em.
We'll see how it goes.
8 is still in my head...
Nov 6, 2008
I took a visit to Erika's blog and stumbled on this piece. This isn't it in its entirety. I edited some of her more personal details out- I asked her permission to post her words here- but please take a visit to her blog. Be Gay About It Her eloquence is wonderful.
These words resonated for me. They speak of an experience that some of us have gone through in a remarkably similar way. Enjoy the read.
"I made it through my primary and secondary school years like every other normal girl, chasing boys on the playground, even “going out” with them in the milk line or cafeteria. In high school, I continued to crush outwardly on boys, but I invested every atom of my being into adoring my best friend. At the height of this adoration, I raised over $2,000 so that she could go to opera camp in California. It was in high school that the something small & heavy returned to the pit of my stomach, this time with a throatier growl.
In college, my high school best friend and I grew apart. (More likely, I scared her away with my intense, quasi courting rituals.) Enter: new best friend. My new best friend was different than anyone I’d ever known. Her outsides were beef jerky and her insides were marshmallow. We spent a lot of time together and, before long, our symbiotic bond had me quoting Rilke. What I didn’t realize at the time was that once one reaches the point where she can articulate her feelings only by reciting the verse of a dead, German, existentialist poet, she’s pretty much in love with a girl.
The plotline we shared surged and died abruptly and she and I stopped communicating altogether. The troll in my gut flailed and moaned. Left alone to collect the shards of our story, I tried to confront the troll once and for all. I bought a stack of gay-themed books, thinking I could negotiate with shame. After a month, though, I picked up the books and threw them into the large, green garbage can behind our house.
For the next few years, the troll remained with me, a parasite to my true self, an alter ego with a conscience. Alternately, I dated a boy, hung out at a few lesbian dinner parties (nearly vomiting at each one), dated another boy, and crushed really hard on a girl or two. I knew who I was through all of this, but I couldn’t tell myself the truth about who I was through all of this. I knew the words existed, but I would not speak them. Speaking them would’ve meant that I did not fit, that every message I had received through observations of my parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles, through television shows, through magazine ads, through every soft rock ballad, through greeting cards — through everything — did not apply to me. I was different and, while I didn’t see anything wrong with how I was different, I knew that others did.
Ken Hardy captures my experience perfectly in his book Teens Who Hurt. He wrote “For adolescents who are in a state of questioning with regard to their sexual orientation, there is no breathing room, no space to take a deep breath and reflect. There is no margin for error. In a society that promotes heterosexuality, simply expressing doubt about one’s sexuality can be quite painful and costly.” I would extend his observation to include adults, too, as I remained shoulder to shoulder with my troll in this airless space well into my late 20s.
Because I live in a culture that promotes heterosexuality over any other sexuality, I have been marginalized my entire life. I felt butterflies for my friend who slept over in 1st grade, but I knew that expressing that would mean ridicule and isolation. I doted on my best friend in high school, but I knew that verbalizing that would have meant being ostracized by my peers. I dreamed of growing old with my best friend in college, but confessing that to her devastated our relationship and propelled me into a tailspin of self-loathing. Hardy remarked, “No matter how complex the difficulties with devaluation are for gay, lesbian, bisexual and questioning youth, a firm declaration of their heterosexuality is believed to be the best remedy.” In other words, the dominant discourse is clear:
be straight, be straight, be straight.
In my mid-20s, the stress of suppressing my authentic self stifled me. In a desperate effort to create space in my life, I moved to Denver where, while working in a law office, I became friends with one of the female attorneys and her life partner. I spent time with them and their lesbian friends and attended the neighborhood open & affirming church a few times, broadening my exposure to people like me and people who accepted people like me. I acquired a new stack of books and read them without throwing them away. Narrative after narrative resonated. Through my conversations with my new friends and through reading, my troll quieted, the shame receded. I came out to my family, then to my friends back home. Each time I divulged my truth, waves of liberated panic flushed through me.
The society in which I live–our society, this society, here and now– ignores the possibility of me, disregards the reality of me, and limits the potential of me through its government, its laws, its media, its marketed portrait of family, and its sociocultural definition of normal. Three years ago, barely out of the closet and single, I did not understand the girth of this injustice. I did not address it with the passion that I do now because, now, as my partner Jenn and I build our future together, it’s personal."..."
Knowing that I am precluded the basic rights, benefits, and protections granted to my heterosexual counterparts elicits in me anger and sadness. But anger and sadness are emotions I can overcome. What really haunts me about the discriminatory social infrastructure that brands me as a derelict without taking into account my personhood is the argument made by opponents to homosexuality (also known as proponents of marriage)— that I have a choice. They simplify the issue of sexual orientation by implying that if I want the same rights, benefits, and protections that my heterosexual counterparts enjoy, all I have to do is choose the orientation that will grant me those rights. But even the mere fact that they are offering me this option proves that I am disenfranchised, that I am the second class citizen. (Not to mention, as my grandmother points out, they never had to choose heterosexuality). The only real choice I am able to make within this rigid, exclusive system is whether or not to live a genuine, authentic life and this violates our Constitutional promise of freedom and equality for all."
"Each and every time I meet someone new, I come face to face with possible rejection. Even with those who accept me for who I am, including my sexual orientation, I have a hard time stifling what little remains of the troll. I wonder, Do they really accept me? or What are they thinking? or Is this another case of ‘love the sinner, hate the sin’?. Over the years, I have mastered the arts of detecting nuances and bracing myself. One might argue that this is a stressful way to live; I would agree, but add that it is a necessary way to live when there is little to no recourse in preserving my safety and the security of my family.
One of my favorite musicians wrote, “There is so much to know and so little to fear in love.” This is what I believe to be truth. My greatest hope is that by speaking this truth every chance I get, I will be able to let down my guard. My greatest hope is that I will be evaluated by my personhood and citizenship, not by some mythical interpreation of what my partner and I do in our bedroom, or by superstitious beliefs about how that might impact our ability to parent, to file taxes together, or to share health insurance.
My greatest hope is that 7 year old girls and boys will not know what it feels like to be demonized.
My greatest hope is that we all will live, really live, genuine, authentic lives."
The inner troll, the crushes, the crushes on boys and girls, the attempt, the pressure to be straight, act straight, live in a straight world, be more feminine, more of a straight girl, the suppression of self, moments of panic, the idea that I have chosen this, the possibility of rejection...
"Over the years, I have mastered the arts of detecting nuances and bracing myself. One might argue that this is a stressful way to live; I would agree, but add that it is a necessary way to live when there is little to no recourse in preserving my safety and the security of my family."
These things that I imagine many straight people do not encounter. That are, perhaps, akin to the coming out experience, of identifying as queer. I don't know. I can't ever be sure because I am not straight. I can't walk in a straight person's shoes, if you will. In the same way I can't know, really know what it's like to grow up with a different skin color, or as a boy.
I can only make careful educated assumptions, inquire, wonder, read, and learn. And mostly most importantly, respect. Respect others that aren't me.
Be careful, be honest, move forward.
And Erika? Please forgive my crude editing- I wanted to let readers know that there was more to your post than what I put here- thus the "...". Your words felt healing to me today- I thank you.
Nov 5, 2008
What to do now?
Really I just want to ask everyone I come in contact with how they voted on prop 8.
And if they voted yes- I want to say FUCK YOU!!
Don't you get it? Don't you get how it feels to be marginalized? Don't you get how you've just told me that my love, my life, is wrong? Don't you get that there is a separation of church and state? If your particular brand of religion is against gay marriage- so be it. Stay out of the constitution.
How do I look at the playground aide, the brownie troop leader, the mom who gave us a meal after Käri had surgery who says "they're okay, but not the rest of those gay people?
I'm sure it's displaced anger. Anger at myself for not doing more, saying more, being more outspoken to everyone, anger at 52% of Californians.
It's a strange place to be. I wish I could speak more eloquently about it all- this will have to do.
We have received several e-mails and phone calls commiserating, expressing their sorrow at 8's passing and overall expressing their support for us and our family. Awfully nice.
Nov 4, 2008
Apparently, I am more anxious about this election than I thought.
The first was talking to a friend this morning who is voting for McCain- I can respect that, but then when talking further she avoided Prop 8 discussion other than to say "it's a huge discussion at my house".
I don't understand how this friend can support me and my family and yet, more than likely, vote yes on 8.
The second was listening to NPR replaying Obama talking about his grandmother.
The third listening to voters speak on NPR after they had finished voting.
And the fourth was after I completed voting and my little girls were so good sitting at the table coloring and eating cookies- thinking about their future, wondering about the outcome of this election and recognizing how much our country needs change.
Will it happen?
My oldest, Leo, told me he really wants Prop 8 to lose because he wants us to be happy, he doesn't want us to have to separate, "because won't it be against the law, for you to stay together if 8 passes?"
Nov 3, 2008
And let's not forget I had an accomplice or five... The extra grown up grabbed some signs, as well and the other four, well, it was an opportunity for learning. They looked for the color yellow and counted- "Two mama, two"
My civic duty... Complete.
Nov 2, 2008
I wrote a paragraph or two of all the mishaps- read it over again and then deleted it... I won't focus on the negative- let's just say, my expectations were higher...
Eight kids in the car for a five hour trip in the pouring rain- quick change in a hotel room, one covered in vomit and on to the wedding - full of family and a bunch of strangers.
Five hours of wedding activities including poking the large fire pit/bar-b-ques with long sticks, playing hide and seek, dancing, and eating, all in the pouring rain. The outside deck was covered with various tarps, but it was impossible for the kids to keep dry- all the water was way too alluring.
A return to the hotel room for a late bedtime, 10:00- one big 'ol tantrum- and up at 5:30 (we did turn the clocks back before we went to bed). Out to breakfast in a small town where it seemed that everyone there was a friend or family member and then back to the hall for some help cleaning up. A walk to see the old cabin and Auntie Michelle's house, and then back into the car for a five hour trip home- thankfully in dry weather.
In the end- they did fine- no catastrophes, just some hiccups.
It was a great wedding- a fun time. The ceremony was brief and perfect for them- fun to see some forgotten faces.
Nov 1, 2008
It wasn't exactly a chapel, but a hall in a little corner of redwoods in Camp Meeker. How I love this place. Summers were spent here in our family cabin when I was a pre-teen and then teen. So many great memories of family and later friends at Meldave (our cabin's name). I'd hike around the roads and trails, ocassionally forging my own, and tromp through the creek. Some days we'd pack up and head to the beach in Monte Rio or sometimes Guerneville. Bring a lunch and hang out all day reading Evergreen or the 'Attic' series. I explored St. Dorothy's when it wasn't occupied and once went snipe hunting late at night. Many rounds of moanin' rummy and learning to play Pedro- watching my aunts and uncles laugh, cocktails in hand. Sleeping on the screened in porch, a little scared at the night noises surrounding the cabin. Always cold at night ,snuggled in a sleeping bag, and the days warm and hot. Perfect weather!
Today we returned for my sister's wedding. She married her partner of fifteen years. They were giddy, nervous, and excited. My other sister lives in Camp Meeker and was eloquoent in her officiating the ceremony. A lovely and lively party that we left before it was over. Dancing, singing, drinking, talking and laughing.
Relatives, friends, kids... Many years of history and memories in that room. Many came from Colorado, Utah, Los Angeles, and from all over the Bay Area. So many good feelings and warmth.
I was surprised, a bit, at some of my relatives who actually attended, and my father who agreed to walk my sister down the aisle- how far he has come to do this for her, with her.
A fun time, a good time, a legal time.
Oct 28, 2008
Abe- "Mama, when I grow up are other grown ups going to boss me around?"
Me- 'Well, if you work somewhere, you'll probably have a boss that will tell you what to do..."
Abe- "No, I mean because my skin is dark. Will people boss me around because I have dark skin?"
Me- Swallow- "No Abe, like slaves is that what you mean? No, that doesn't happen anymore, everyone respects everyone else no matter what they look like"
Abe- "Oh, right 'cuz Abraham Lincoln fixed it and his name is the same as mine"
See, I'm not necessarily all that concerned about getting married- although yes I did just get married- call me a hypocrite if you will. It's really not the point is it? Marriage, I mean. It's about having the choice, being recognized as being just like everyone else, no different than John and Mary.
I'm all about hearing different opinions on everything- including prop 8 (or 102 in Arizona- the other one escapes me at the moment since I'm in a bit of a writing Frenzy) or anything else. I do believe everyone is entitled to their own opinion. And that I need to be respectful of that. There are different lines, I suppose. When I was of an age that I realized my white grandfather calling all Asian people Chinks or Asiatics was wrong, I would scoff at him and say "Oh, Pa" He knew, I knew and that was enough. If my child was to use the same derogatory language a simple scoff would not be enough. There would be a discussion of calling people names, how it makes them feel- perhaps a bit of history and a huge NOT OKAY!
I believe I mentioned a while back a discussion I had with my 12 year old regarding Bush- Leo was talking about how we hate him- I backed him up a bit and changed the verbiage- We (meaning mommy and I) don't agree with his politics, but I assume he is a nice man, father, friend...
I hear arguments for Prop 8 that quote the bible, that say they are protecting the "institution of marriage" of what it was meant to be, what it has always been, historically, religiously, as referred to by God. And when it comes down to the final line, the final bottom line?
What is really being said is I'm not good enough. I'm not "normal", not equal, different, wrong. My love, my life, my children, don't cut it. We are not allowed in.
Are we really that terrible? Such sinners, wrong doers, "sodomites". Go ahead, tell my children. Five of whom we "rescued" yeah, rescued, from lives full of drugs, violence and filth. Three who pediatricians and doctors have assured us would have died without our care.
Tell them we aren't good enough. That they are not good enough to live with us and have the same protections given to those who are the children of parents that are legally married- straight people. Our biological children had to be cross adopted so that we would be considered the legal other parent. Thousands of dollars for lawyers and court dates. Because we weren't legal.
Käri jokingly referred to me as a political activist, as I placed my 'No on 8' and Obama pins on my chest. We talked about Canada this morning... Good riddance the conservative right says...
On our way in to school this morning, Leo says "I don't get the Yes on 8 signs- they say they are protecting marriage- how are they protecting marriage". I explained how some (benefit of the doubt here) of the Yes on 8 commercials and ad's are misleading some in fact plain 'ol wrong. "Isn't that illegal", he says. (Putting wrong information in their ad's) We talk about political battles... He shakes his head and says "I just don't get it". "Me either" I say and inside I seethe.
There are few things in my life that I get hot and bothered about. At this point I am riding a fine line between tolerating a different opinion than mine (on 8) and saying "I can no longer associate with you".
I'm losing it. Losing my tolerance, my acceptance. It'll come back, but right now, just livid.
Remember that film about blue eyed kids being better that brown eyed kids- It was a psych. film, an experiment, and how the kids reacted. There were superior attitudes and tears. The better and the worse. The included and the isolated. At the moment, isolated... and pissed.
"Love does not delight in injustice but rejoices in the truth" Corinthians 13:6
Oct 20, 2008
I copied a lot of information from Wiki- These are all regarding Anti-Miscegenation, not gay marriage or any reaction to DOMA.
"Miscegenation (Latin miscere "to mix" + genus "kind") is the mixing of different racial groups, that is, marrying, cohabiting, having sexual relations and having children with a partner from outside of one's racially or ethnically defined group."
"In 1958, the political theorist Hannah Arendt, an emigre from Nazi Germany, wrote in an essay in response to the Little Rock Crisis, the Civil Rights struggle for the racial integration of public schools which took place in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1957, that anti-miscegenation laws were an even deeper injustice than the racial segregation of public schools. The free choice of a spouse, she argued in Reflections on Little Rock, was "an elementary human right": "Even political rights, like the right to vote, and nearly all other rights enumerated in the Constitution, are secondary to the inalienable human rights to 'life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness' proclaimed in the Declaration of Independence; and to this category the right to home and marriage unquestionably belongs."
I love what this woman had to say.
"In 1967, the United States Supreme Court unanimously ruled in Loving v. Virginia that anti-miscegenation laws are unconstitutional. With this ruling, these laws were no longer in effect in the remaining 16 states that at the time still enforced them."
41 years ago- 16 states still enforced laws regarding whites marrying non whites- 41 years ago...
"...it took South Carolina until 1998 and Alabama until 2000 to officially amend their states' constitutions to remove language prohibiting miscegenation. In the respective referendums, 62% of voters in South Carolina and 59% of voters in Alabama voted to remove these laws."
Only 62% and 59%? Holy hell.
"On June 12, 2007, Mildred Loving issued a rare public statement prepared for delivery on the 40th anniversary of the Loving v. Virginia decision of the US Supreme Court, which commented on same-sex marriage. The concluding paragraphs of her statement read as follows:"
“ Surrounded as I am now by wonderful children and grandchildren, not a day goes by that I don't think of Richard and our love, our right to marry, and how much it meant to me to have that freedom to marry the person precious to me, even if others thought he was the "wrong kind of person" for me to marry. I believe all Americans, no matter their race, no matter their sex, no matter their sexual orientation, should have that same freedom to marry. Government has no business imposing some people's religious beliefs over others. Especially if it denies people's civil rights.
I am still not a political person, but I am proud that Richard's and my name is on a court case that can help reinforce the love, the commitment, the fairness, and the family that so many people, black or white, young or old, gay or straight seek in life. I support the freedom to marry for all. That's what Loving, and loving, are all about.
Oh, and just for the record, I'm voting No on 8. You should too.
I recently had this to say over here.
"I would agree that the thought of ripping the YES on 8 signs out of my neighbors lawns did cross my mind. For me, it didn't come from a place of hate. It came from a place of fear and discouragement.
I didn't and wouldn't tear the signs out. I believe in the right of free speech and equality for all, and all opinions, even ones I don't agree with.
Thus the reason I will vote No on 8- without hesitation."
Oct 19, 2008
Oct 10, 2008
Oct 3, 2008
Stolen from Kathryn...
Are you sure of your sexual orientation? Or are you confused? Not confused. But for the record, I'm still attracted to men in a 'I wouldn't kick his shoes out from under my bed' kind of way.
Are you open with your sexuality? Or is it a secret? I'm out, mostly, but not completely- entirely. I'm careful around strangers, sometimes parents at school- often leaving out pronouns or referring to 'my family', omitting direct references to Käri and/or her gender.
Who was the 1st person you told that you’re a lesbian? My straight friend/roommate from high school/college as I lay in a heap unable to eat. She surprised me by accepting it without hesitation. In fact I believe she said something along the lines of - okay, so now what....
Is your hair short, medium, or long? Short. I've tried slightly long, but cannot stand it.
Would you ever shave your head? Yes, but it would be ugly.
Do you own anything with the Gay Rainbow on it? Yes- stickers on the car.
Do you consider yourself a Stud, Androgynous, or Femme? Not a Femme, not a Stud, not Androgynous... No makeup, men's shorts, pink floral shirt, and Keens...hmmm...
What type of females are you most attracted to? Butch, but Käri is anything but, and I love all her curves.
What FAMOUS Lesbian is your favorite? Rosie O'Donnell
Do you like watching The L Word? Yes.
What is your favorite lesbian movie? Can't remember any of the few I've seen.
Do you have any Pride tattoos? If not, would you ever get one? No- maybe.
Do you go to Gay/Lesbian clubs? No. There aren't any where I live. Although I would love to hangout in a Gay/Lesbian coffee shop/bar/bookstore/dinner house...
Would you ever be a Drag King? (If you’re not already) Yeah, I don't think so.
What name would you go by if you did do Drag? Would that be a boys name or girls??? Probably my alter ego Trixie or maybe Molly.
Have you ever been mistaken for a Male? Since I was a kid- many times.
Would you ever have a sex change to become a Male? No.
How do you feel about Homophobia? Ridiculous, fear driven, ignorance.
How do you feel about Gays/Lesbians having children? Let's see... :) If they want 'em and are ready for the challenge- Go!
If it were legal, would you marry another Female? We did it once already and will do it again on our 20th anniversary this month!
Have you ever attended a Gay Pride Festival? Oh yes- such affirmation.
Do you wear make-up? Nope.
Do you carry a wallet - or a purse? Leather backpack, but I tend to leave it in the car a lot and just carry my wallet if I'm going to need it or just money and cards in my pocket.
Do you wear Male clothes? I love men's clothes- always have. Unfortunately, my ass is too big for most of the pants- and pink is my favorite color to wear.
Do you prefer wearing cologne instead of perfume. Neither.
Do you have several piercings & tattoos? I guess, one tat and three holes in my ears.
Do you have a crush on a female celebrity, if so, who? I love Whoopi.
Do you have more Gay/Lesbian/Bi friends than you do Straight friends? Almost all straight.
Have you ever been gay bashed? Not that I am aware of.
Did anyone stop having contact with you after you came out of the closet? No.
What is your favorite gay/lesbian quote? Can't say that I have one- although I do like the "There's more of us than you think".
Do you believe you were born a lesbian? I think so, yes.
Are you proud? Or ashamed of your sexuality? Proud, never ashamed. Careful sometimes, but never ashamed.
Sep 28, 2008
Do all people see those images in their minds eye? Was it something I've seen before so it reminded me of that? Is it because I'm white and inherently racist towards others of a different color that the image floated into my brain? Am I inherently racist? Does being white make me prejudiced?
For years now I've wanted to adopt a black baby. Is that because I have some old fashioned, distorted, racist, view of "all black babies being cute". Or because of a dream that I have had about having a little African American boy in my home- a real dream? Or is it the fantasy of having so many children all different shades of browns and pinks? Or is it my need to rescue and help and being haunted by the images of the orphanages in Africa?
Sep 25, 2008
Sep 24, 2008
I'm on my way to pick up my kindergartners, windows down, music blaring in the 15 passenger van, when up pulls a mini van. A bit disheveled, older, tan van with an elderly occupant in similar condition. We are stopped at a red light, idling away. He looks at me, can't quite get the view he wants, so scoots up for a better look. His window is open, he looks again, stares, smiles, guffaws and yells through the opening.
"Ya got a bunch a kids packed in there?"
I nod, smile, "Yep". (Only two at the moment, but it's usually packed with kids).
"Bwahaha" he responds. A slight smile plays on his elderly face. And off we go.
Friendly, Critical... I don't know.
As he pulls in front of us I read his bumper sticker.
When Religion Ruled The World- they called it the dark ages.
Not what I expected. I love that. When my assumption, my leap to a stereotype, perhaps, blows me away. The crinkled up face, dangling cigarette, age of the vehicle. I would have expected a Bush '04 sticker, not something I could relate too, laugh at, and appreciate.
P.S. Did you notice my kids have faces???
Sep 22, 2008
A friend from way back that I found on Facebook (hey Jen!) pointed out to me that I haven't posted since September 11. It wasn't until then that it occurred to me that I posted Dish Drainer Jenga on that day. Talk about weird! I posted a picture of a tower of dishes that were sure to collapse and titled it with a trademark game name that is all about trying to keep the tower standing. Come on, that's a little freaky!
OK, wait, it also just ocurred to me that the way we found out about the towers collapsing was from Jen! She was in Africa working and finding her first baby... and e-mailed or instant messaged questions about the towers- we did not have a clue until then. Jen, what else are you connected to?
I haven't been keeping up with my reading of Blogs or writing- I've been feeling neglectful on both counts.
Yesterday, was day two of wicked PMS- Käri was driving me crazy, the kids nutty, the house... low patience, cranky, sleepy... however, dinner still needed to be made. I had found some recipes over at Pioneer Woman Cooks- most especially her chocolate cake and had been wanting to try it. Not exactly dinner, but it was still early enough in the afternoon that I could accomplish both. I made Kär some stuffed red bell peppers from a recipe I found online (pretty yummy) and the kids and I had BLT's, or really Bacon and toast- who am I kidding? One child had lettuce on her sandwich with the bacon... And of course the chocolate cake (which was, as promised really, really fabulous- especially still warm and gooey).
It wasn't until later, that I realized that I felt better- not so cranky, not so impatient. When I mentioned it this evening Käri pointed out that cooking is a creative outlet for me. Something I need and don't get enough of... like blogging. So, I'm going to make more of an effort to capture the time and write the nonsense and the drivel of my life.
I promise- to me.
Sep 7, 2008
The Republicans sure have been successful in getting Palin's name all over the place. I have a hard time believing that that wasn't part of the goal in choosing her...
Here's my comment- it was kind of long...
I’ve read these last two posts, slowly, over the last two days. I’m a left wing democrat from California, so reading is a struggle for me, plus I’m lazy, being a liberal and all.
It has nothing to do with the fact that I am raising eight children under the age of 12- five of whom we have adopted from the foster care system. Because yes, we do know where children come from, and we are acting responsibly, thank you very much. And we would make a better t.v. show than John and Kate, as a commenter recently suggested. (However, this would probably be a good time to admit, we haven’t seen the show) I could be convinced to live with a film crew and exploit my children, and “lifestyle” for a few years in order to pay for a college education for each of my children. Producers are calling day and night to sign us up. We just can’t decide which network.
We choose to have one parent stay at home for a variety of reasons- and try and make do on one teacher’s salary. Shall we throw education into the discussion here? Let's not.
Family values… I too, would have to agree that children belong with their family- whether that be birth family or otherwise. AND wholeheartedly believe that it is each family’s choice to have their children cared for by others or not.
I would assume SP wanted a career and a family. She’s got both. Same for Obama. Kids garner votes- every politician flaunts them if they’ve got’em. As for Trig? Well, my drug affected kids had needs, we met them as best as we could, while also dealing with the other needs of the family. You can’t ignore everybody else for one or two.
A government supported family leave program and childcare? How is that not supporting families? Thus supporting family values?
Also, SP on the democratic ticket? with left wing policies? same family??? I’m thinking Bethany has a point. She’d be lauded for holding her family together while chasing her dream and helping the country.
As far as her 17 year old being pregnant. I’m not sure what parent could have stopped that from happening. Values, and politics aside. 17 year old girls have been getting pregnant all on their own for a long time now and it doesn’t seem to be wholly dependent on a parent remaining home or not.
With all of that said- Obama gets my vote. I like his politics better. Period.
I can’t be bothered with who leaves their kids, or moves them. Which church they go to or don’t . Muslim, Protestant, Male, Female, Brown, White, Bald or a Full Head of Hair, Married, Divorced, Widowed, POW, Veteran, Gay, Straight, Monogomous, or not… I’m looking at their politics.
I'm not voting for McCain, so I don't really care much about Palin and don't want to waste a whole lot of negative energy bashing her or anybody else. What's the point?
Sep 6, 2008
1. A long time ago I did something(s) that could be considered either a misdemeanor or a felony- depending on the discretion of the court. It was a folly of youth. I was under age and I never got caught. I am assuming that the statute of limitations has run out.
2. Along those same lines...I used to go to traffic court (all those speeding tickets- opps) as a minor and represent myself even though you were supposed to have a parent bring you. It surprises me a little that I had the huevos to do that.
3. I was in love with a girl in high school, but didn't recognize it until a few years later.
4. I came very close to losing my virginity when I was in seventh grade- but then didn't until I was 18. (Does that count as two things? I think it does.) and 5.
6. Criminy... I'm pretty much an open book and am having a hard time thinking of something that I haven't written about before... This evening I ignored my dirty kitchen to spend time on my computer sipping a cocktail before the bedtime madness.
Will that do?
It's going to have to, because now the bedtime flurry has begun. Two down, six to go... And the kitchen waits!
I'll tag: Zipntizzy, Lelo, Sheesha, Laurie (NJAC) and Jody (ABM6).