Wow, what a lot has happened since I last posted, most of it bad. I stand by my theory that the stock market is going to be batshit crazy until at least November 5th, assuming it lasts that long. It's a pretty solid bet. You know about the bad, weird stuff, so here is some personal stuff.
If anything, I'm working harder than usual, and I thought I'd have little to do. L'Ailee and I are still employed. My mom was not for a moment, but that situation changed *very* quickly, TTG. My brother's eyes are recovering nicely from surgery, and he would do even better if he would STOP TRYING TO GO ONLINE!!!!! (By the way, Dorkfish, if you're reading this, GET OFF THE DAMN COMPUTER NOW!!!!)
My work husband and I were actually taking bets as to how far down the Dow would finish. After all, we needed to profit somehow, we thought. I won. This means he has to go see High School Musical this weekend, with another adult and without a child. (He doesn't have kids yet, though he keeps saying "someday.") He must show me the ticket stubs next time we see each other. Mean, right? But let me tell you what he had planned for me! Oh, it's so degrading, I can barely speak of it. *shudder* If I lost, I was to wear a Carl Edwards cap and Detroit Red Wings jersey out in public tomorrow, with photographic evidence! I will be meeting Bill Griffith, writer/illustrator of the Zippy the Pinhead comic strip!
Last weekend, I was part of Zombiecon. This has been a tradition in Manhattan for the past four years, and it was my first time. Basically, you dress up in a zombie costume--the more topical the better--and drink and engage in street theater. There were a lot of zombie financial types in tattered suits. I was one of a small army of undead Sarah Palins, but I added an "axe in the head" for a clever twist. (Basically, I attached combs to a small plastic axe--easy, but drying is time-consuming. I'd love to say that was totally my idea, but I was inspired by L'Ailee's best friend's first post-9/11 costume, which was Osama Bin Laden With an Axe In His Head.) My axe earned me a free drink, but then the woman who'd accessorized her zombie Sarah Palin costume with what looked like a pair of caribou antlers stuck in her back showed up. Well, I'll raise my game next year. I enjoyed it so much, almost pathetically so. I became Pagan when I was 23, and from then on, I observed fun but serious Samhains like a good girl. No costumes, just robes put on after the trick-or-treaters went away. It was nice to wear a costume again, to retire the "I guess I'll just be a Witch for Halloween!" line.
But I do want to observe Samhain, and Samhain at home in Florida with my former coven is go! I have flight tickets! My best friend, who'd also come up from Florida to be with her beloved and also was a founding member of that coven, will be going with me. So will her 7-year-old daughter. I love that girl to pieces. Yemaya O'Reilly, her mother, is doing her best to raise her as a good little Witch, but wants her to keep an open mind and understand that some people are going to be mean or ask stupid questions. But she loves wearing her tiny pentacle, which she begged for until she got. She loves the water and animals, both things I can share with her. She also loves High School Musical, and I will let Yemaya and her partner share that! She was very excited about tonight's premiere. In her flow of words, she said something that struck both Yemaya and I: "I'm glad the last movie's in October. It's really close to Samhain, and Samhain is when things are 'sposed to end! It's gonna be so good, and I get to stay up late and go to the movies 'stead of watching it at home. And it isn't really all the way over because I can play my DVDs." Yemaya grimaced ever so slightly. "Now all those singers can make something new, and that's what Samhain is for!" Yemaya's daughter concluded brightly.
I was amazed at how well my little "niece" comprehended the concepts behind Samhain, even going so far as to apply them to High School Musical. So was Yemaya. "She learns so much," Yemaya marveled, "and we don't even see it. We don't even see she's *listening* half the time. But there come these weird times where she just lets me know I didn't waste a single breath. I wanna be so careful, you know? I don't want to make everyone think she's a black Wednesday Addams, and I don't want her just agreeing with me, but...it's so cool, you know? Scary and cool."
I didn't know what to say, because that is a set of joys and responsibilities that I will never have as a woman who is reconciled to being infertile and doesn't care to adopt. But I could say this: "If she really just parroted you, she wouldn't be dragging your ass to High School Musical." Yemaya laughed and laughed at that.
Several of my former coven's members have children. They add such a different kind of energy, but it's a wonderful counterpoint to the stuff about endings to observe with small children at the beginnings of their lives. (It also means everyone drinks a bit less, or at least waits until the kids are asleep!) They go out trick-or-treating before our rituals for the ancestors, the newly departed, and getting rid of bad old things. My "niece" has a kangaroo costume waiting for her in Florida, at her grandmother's house, and Yemaya's hoping she hasn't grown out of it or doesn't want to be a High School Musical character all of a sudden.
I must tell the story of her trick-or-treating at an Evangelical Christian neighbor's home. She gives out Chick tracts with candy. Two years ago, my "niece" got a tract about "witches" that was meant for kids. She reads very well, and she read it while she nibbled on candy the next day. A discussion ensued with her mother. "You saw a real Witch ritual last night," Yemaya told her. "Did it look anything like that?" "No, mama." The girl was satisfied that the "little comic book" was wrong and her mama and aunties were right.
Last year, a neighbor tried to give her another along with a piece of candy. The adults who took the kids out laughed as they recalled what happened. My "niece" said, in the sweet but firm tone her mama taught her, "Sorry, ma'am, I don't want one of those little comic books. They aren't very funny, and did you know they're full of lies? But thank you for the candy." The neighbor was in high dudgeon, apparently, and the adults basically told her that this is what you can expect when you try to give non-Christians' kids religious propaganda, then hustled the kids away. The other kids were so amazed. They asked, "You can *do* that? Tell them 'no'?"
Since I converted, I wondered what it might be like to try to raise children in this very minority faith. I find it so interesting to see the results in my former coven siblings' children. However, I especially can't wait to see what a "black Wednesday Addams" might grow into.
That arrogant asshole Michael Bloomberg can now run for mayor again, term limits be damned! Speaking of things I'd like to end...
Nature walks are good for kids with ADHD.
Back in the day, the girl who would become my wife lived in NYC and I lived in Orlando. (Hence the return for Samhain.) I am very glad that I did not think about how environmentally irresponsible LDRs are! So now I've done my bit for the planet by moving in with L'Ailee, and I can just feel guilty about watching NASCAR.
How James Dobson drove Colin Powell from the Republican Party
Why California Republicans should vote "no" on Proposition 8.
Finally, Radar's got a hilarious takedown of allegedly "hip" anti-same-sex marriage ads.