Been a lot of big news lately in the--damn--almost a month between blog entries! We all know Jerry Falwell died yesterday. I was going to write about other stuff, but that changed things. Of course I have no love for Jerry Falwell, who made his living at the expense of lives like mine. As I told my work husband, "Mourning's kind of an overstatement." For all I know, he could have been a fantastic husband, father, and grandfather. I only know his public face. But his public face was so hideous! It's a struggle to stay compassionate. The group I really feel sorry for, aside from his family, is the students at his Liberty University, who are having graduation this week. Even from this college, students deserve to enjoy their graduation--they worked so hard for it.
Other people are dancing on his figurative grave, online and off. L'Ailee tells me I'm much too superstitious about this. But my paternal relatives, who were officially Southern Baptists but practiced a form of folk magick officially called "Stuff We Don't Tell the Pastor About," were ardent ancestor worshippers who drummed into my head the importance of respecting the newly dead. I can't be mean--honest, maybe, but I have to be careful not to be mean. I can't sing the "Kiss Him Goodbye" song, even though it popped into my head. I must repress those urges. And the thing is, it's not for him. It's for my family, my Ghede-Loa (a/k/a Vodoun demigods of death), and my Gods that I am trying to find my compassion and stuff down my cruelty. You see, it's like that line in Moonstruck, when Cher's mom was propositioned by a man who wasn't her husband and she replied that she couldn't "because I know who I am." No matter what he did to hurt me without even knowing me, no matter what others whom I respect and sympathize with do, I know who I am. Who I am is a daughter of my ancestors and the Ghedes. This may mean little to most people, but it's vital to me, and if Falwell couldn't stop it alive, he damn sure can't dead.
Actually, I came to a realization a couple years ago, about why it's so important to respect the dead. It hit me like a thunderbolt, even though it seems like it should have been so obvious in retrospect. The thing about respecting the dead is, it's never really for them, not even if you loved them and they loved you back. Wherever the dead are at, if anywhere, they're probably beyond anything we can be feeling and saying about them anyhow. It's for the living, just like the funeral. It's about respecting the survivors' feelings and letting them know you understand why they hurt. It's important not to heap extra pain onto the survivors immediately after a death. "Even if the survivors agree with him?", you might ask. Yes, even if. As long as one is alive, they can grow, learn, and change, so you can never really write anyone off completely. We all have that opportunity while we're here. If nothing else, we may mourn the fact that Falwell will never again have that opportunity.
His death pushed bigger news off the TV screen, bigger at least for me and others with connections to Florida. What can I say? The fires happen every ten years or so anyway, but that regularity doesn't make them any less devastating, or me any less worried. I wish I could go work for the Divine weather department. Obviously the rain ought to be spread around a bit better. Some places have way too little and some have way too much. I keep asking the Rain Gods for some parity and fairness. My kid brother's really close to the fires in Florida right now. (Of course, pretty much everyone in Florida is.) Dorkfish thinks he's gonna be fine and tells me I don't have to invite them up here and wonders why they can't put out a simple fire. Denial is a powerful survival tool sometimes. Our paternal family's hunting camp burned down, too. It's happened before, and could be lots worse. I hope worse doesn't happen. I don't have fingernails left.
Those of you who don't like my NASCAR updates needn't worry for a while. I'm not talking about NASCAR. There's a reason for that. I'm getting awfully tired of these Hendricks drivers!
But where I'm at, things are fine. My big problem is that once again, Dorkfish neglected Mother's Day and I didn't, so my reward was an earful of my mother's complaints. I really felt bad, because it seems like what I do doesn't count in her eyes. Because he neglected to send her anything or call her, it was a total loss, even though she's got two children and I remembered. She could barely bring herself to say thank you to me before launching in on her monologue! I know listening is a gift in itself too, but enough got to be enough quite quickly. I finally just told her, "Please, take it up with him. I love you, but I don't need or want to be in the middle of this." So now she's angry at us both. *sigh*
We're saying goodbye to one group of interns and welcoming another at my company. I'm the intern-wrangler, and this time, I had a lot more input in picking the new group and coordinating placements for them, so I hope I did a good job. I have a large group project for one of my interior decorating classes. I don't do well in group projects, never have, but I'm giving this one my best effort, not just in work but in patience. We at least agreed that we wanted to make things as eco-friendly as possible. We're learning a lot about how to recycle icky old particleboard furniture and outdated electronics, find good paint, use space and fabric for maximum energy efficiency, etc. I fully intend to keep using this stuff.
L'Ailee and I amused ourselves in a store on Saturday. The makers of the Headblade razor have a full line of products out for Bald Guyz in sporty yellow packaging. That Headblade razor really is a guy thing. L'Ailee, with her tiny hands and long, spidery fingers, nicked herself with it the one time she tried it, and the scalp has a *lot* of veins and capillaries, and...well, neither of us will touch one again. I've got small hands and long fingers myself, and mine aren't as steady as hers. The Bald Guyz grooming line features specialty items like towelettes to wipe your sweaty scalp, after-sun cream, and "head slick." "You can use the same things all over," noted L'Ailee, but I figured that if more women adopt her style, and they will if summer's as hot as predicted, a Bald Girlz line can't be far behind.
"Oh, these things, but all in pink," L'Ailee said.
I considered. "No, because it's kind of an edgy look, not traditionally feminine."
She waved her Barbie-pink fingernails in my face. "Edgy."
"You know exactly what I mean. Burgundy or purple would be better. And they could have stuff like flavored glitter lotion for a night out, fruity-scented shaving cream..."
"Dear God!" She bit her lips to keep from laughing.
"And then they can get Britney Spears to endorse it..."
"Shut up, right now, shut up," she managed to say between giggles. And Mom thinks my marketing degree's going to waste!
An MTF transsexual who once drove for NASCAR wants back in! An extremely interesting part of an interesting group of Newsweek articles about transgendered America. She's in her forties, so age isn't really on her side, but of course we all know that's not the only obstacle she faces. I want her to get into Nextel Cup just because it would be so fun to see Darrell Waltrip rendered speechless. Boogity-boogity-boogity!
Women in hip-hop are less visible than *ever*.
How depressing is it when we can forget about the war?
And just for fun, 'cause we need it, Bad ideas for Baby Einstein DVDs!