Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Animals and absolutism

Happy Spring, y'all!!!!! I celebrated tonight by...going to interior design classes. Yemaya and I will be doing something this weekend, however.

My friends and I are so suggestible. Apparently King of the Hill is still on TV. Well, a friend of ours in Orlando watched it, and said there was an episode where Peggy, who has huge feet, accidentally goes shopping for shoes at a store for drag queens. Yemaya and I have big feet. We decided we'd go shoe shopping at a store for drag queens. There are many more of those in New York City than there are in Arlen, Texas, I'll tell you that. It was fun, and we found such amazing shoes, and our feet were downright *dainty* by comparison! We also enjoyed watching this polo-shirt-and-Dockered businessman picking out a pair of shoes for his "female identity." The only problem is this--why is it that men who want to dress like women can find really awesome shoes, and yet it's so difficult for us to find them in a store for women who want to dress like women?! *sigh*

Jimmie Johnson stole the Atlanta win from Tony Stewart on Sunday. Tony was soooo close to winning it, and then a phantom debris caution was called at the last minute, clumping the cars back together and allowing everyone to get the fuel they needed. But I was thrilled that Juan Pablo Montoya finished fifth. USA Today ran an article about him, in which Tony Stewart (another driver who moved to NASCAR from open wheel) commented about him. Could you imagine being in the same room as Montoya *and* Stewart?!?! I'd be stuttering!

In my interior decorating class on Monday night, we got into a lengthy discussion of style elements we hate. We also got into fights, as the inevitable, "Hey, that's in MY house!" came up. It was meant to help us "establish your point of view." I was told that mine is pretty definite. I hate, hate, HATE "greige," the ugly hybrid of grey and beige. (On cars and metal finishes, it's often sold as "champagne".) "Greige just pisses me off!" I blurted, and my instructor said I could put that on a business card in the future. "People who like greige are like people who go to Baskin Robbins and get vanilla," I continued. Of course, someone said, "I *like* vanilla!" I also hate glass-topped tables. I hate fussy little furniture that isn't comfortable. I hate lots of knickknacks. I had to dust around them for way too many weekend hours growing up. When my instructor pointed out that maids could dust for rich clients, I didn't waver: "The maid has a life of her own, too. You should respect that. You should let people focus on you, your cat, your view, and your TV," I said. I very seldom use "should" statements, with absolutely no qualifiers. It's funny that interior decor, not religion or politics, brought that absolutism out in me. It was actually sort of refreshing to be so absolutist, though it's not a place I want to go very often.

On a more serious note, I am frankly amazed by the controversy surrounding baby Knut, the polar bear cub in the Berlin (Germany) Zoo. No doubt you saw him playing and generally enjoying his cute little life on the news. Yet some German animal rights wacktivists think he should be killed. That also brings out the absolutist in me. They think he won't be a proper bear, that he'll be way too humanized, that since his mother rejected him and left him to die, he should be left to die. I think when Knut grows up some, and it does look very much like he will, they ought to be put into his exhibit to assess whether he is properly bearish!

What's really amazing is, I agree with Albert Mohler, the head of the Southern Baptist church, about something! Mohler comes from the belief that God gave us animals to enjoy as we see fit; I come from the belief that humans are part of nature and should recognize ourselves as such. Yet we came to the same conclusion--Knut is awfully cute, and should live. That alone should demonstrate how powerful a baby bear can be!

I was angry at Mohler for a minute there. Still am, actually. He believes that if gayness is found to be biologically based, then babies who might grow up to be gay should be "cured" in the womb. This makes me and L'Ailee feel slightly less paranoid. We believe that if a biological basis is found before homophobia is at least mostly dealt with, LGBTs will be aborted or "cured" or attempted to be cured before they even draw their first breath. We actually fear it a little. I think it would make a decent science fiction book, but reality outstrips science fiction so often. I wouldn't have wanted to be "cured." I like being bi. I don't like other peoples' feelings about it, but that's their problem, not mine. It pisses me off that people like Mohler want to make their problem, which is basically a lack of imagination and fear of anything different, other peoples' problem, even innocent little growing people.

I recently watched a documentary about penguins. There was a scene of two penguins fighting for the attentions of a third. Cute little chubby-wubby things were slapping each other repeatedly with their flippers, just like in Madagascar! I laughed. Then I caught myself up short. To me, it was cute and funny. To the penguins themselves, it was deadly serious. This was a fight. It meant that someone would have their plans for the summer dramatically and negatively affected. It meant there would be bad feelings in the group. Those feelings had to be respected, even though I was on the outside looking in.

Reading Mohler's essays, I saw just how much damage can be done when one is not willing to think of others' emotions...and just how close I can be to another human being whose kind of mind I can't fathom. After all, I have some blind spots, too. For me, it's generally easier to empathize with penguins than with full-time absolutists. I want to change that.

In that spirit, if you disagree with anything I said, please let me know...even if you like greige. :-)

8 comments:

GUILLITA said...

When I saw the story in a local news channel here in Argentina, I couldn't believe my eyes or my ears for that matter. I think it would be terribly wrong to kill this beautiful cub, not only because it hasn't done any harm but also because he has a right to live, just like we humans do. I don't know nor care who these people who want him dead are, but I will say something... would we have this discussion if it was a human baby who was abandoned by his mother? I don't think so... why is this so different? I think this so called "activists" should know better than that... I'm outraged and cannot conceive this kind of "policy". Great blog by the way.

alan said...

Were I in a room with you I'd be stuttering...

My rant before the one you came to visit was about that genetic modification piece and some other things that fried me. It took me about a week to come down from the ceiling when I read his comments. A dear friend commented that perhaps he is the one who should be modified!

Finally as a confirmed packrat trying to reform, I need you and STB in my life...

Viva la revolucion!

alan

BostonPobble said...

And if I agree with you? ;) If the Catholics are right and there is such a thing as purgatory, its walls are painted griege.

Bigg said...

I read the article about Mohler awhile back... and I think that if they start aborting LGBT babies, then those of us who are LGBT and have wombs (not me, naturally, but some of us do) will be called upon to pick up the slack...
Just a thought!

cats said...

part of the joy of having children is not knowing what they will be and then watching them become...

each one is a gift.

dondon009 said...

The first thing I thought of, as began reading my blogmasters was "I must stop by Cracker's to see if she mentions Knut... and of course you did, and of course I agree with you.

Then I continued reading and wondered if you had mentioned Mohler..... and you already know I agree and disagree with him also!

As for "greige", are you certain that you're not a drag queen?

Love you dear........

DON~

Twink said...

Just wanted to let you know I'm still reading here and all.

I had a very long response to something you said typed in this little box but I've deleted it because I'm afraid it will cause in your comments the exact opposite reaction to it's intent.

I think it's best to leave you all to your agreement, but I did want to throw an I love you out there to you and also offer to help if it ever looks like we have to go kidnap Knut and bring him to us for his own safety.

belledame222 said...

>I hate, hate, HATE "greige," the ugly hybrid of grey and beige>

Oh, I know exactly what you mean. I have a pair of pants in this color; i keep them because they are very comfortable, but, especially since they have acquired an impermeable stain, i tend to think of the color as "chewed gum."

it is NOT "champagne." champagne is a light, pleasant goldy-yellow. they lieth. the closest to "appetizing" i could come to would be "mushroom." but then you start to think, "hi, i'd like this in the color of garden-variety fungus." No.