Sunday, June 29, 2008

You fell victim to one of the classic blunders. The most famous is never get involved in a land war in Asia...

The Princess Bride quote is apt. Iran is not an Arab country, it is in Southwest Asia as designated by the U.N., the former Persian Empire. It is the 18th largest country in the world with a population of more than 70 million people, and an area of 636,372 square miles. It is one of the oldest continuous civilizations, dating back to before 4,000 B.C.

Iraq, in comparison, is a country of Western Asia-Mesopotamia, the place where Abraham and Sarah came from, the cradle of civilization, and the birthplace of writing. There are over 29 million people in Iraq, with an area of 169,234 square miles. Also a very, very old civilization, and the former Babylonian Empire. Both former rainforests that became tremendous dinosaur graveyards.

The US took on the smaller country. The US took on the weaker country. Five years out, the smaller, weaker country has been draining America of funds, troops, and self-respect. Unlike many Progressives, I haven't been very worried that Bush and his ilk will steal another election, but that they will do what Seymour Hersh is outlining here in this New Yorker article: in their final days they push through war with Iran.

Monday, June 23, 2008

People Not Worth The Price of the Gunpowder to Blow them To Hell!

I realize that title may just confuse a few people. Those who knew my late father, will have heard him use this unique phrase many, many times, and would only laugh at hearing it again. I suppose I should have written something in this vein on Father's Day, but just didn't feel like doing anything. And since George Carlin was still alive then-it would have seemed a bit weird, maybe.

I saw the obits for Carlin last night, and suddenly felt like crying. George Carlin was one of my father's favorite comedians, along with Redd Foxx, Lenny Bruce, and Richard Pryor. I associate memories of childhood mischief with this man. I saw an HBO special he did, when I was 10-11 years old. Mom was out and my father had won the battle over who got to keep the kid for the day.

Hell, she was going out with my Evil Aunt G. and I wanted no part of that! Evil Aunt G was, and still is, I imagine, since I have refused to speak to her since my father's funeral when she accused my mother of killing him because she no longer wanted to care for him, and nearly gave the young priest (a family friend of a good friend) his own fatal heart attack-was the kind of woman who gave men cancer. Another well-loved phrase of Daddy's-and he ought to know; he was her little brother. I chose to stay with him, and Uncle F., her husband, who had, apparently not coincidentally, cancer.

Uncle F. knew he was dying, as did I, though all the adults in the family refused to face this fact. He had lung cancer-forty plus years of heavy smoking. His breath had that smell, that smell like he was rotting from the inside. I knew that anyone who smelled dead while they still lived, obviously had a serious health problem, and could not fathom why the family all behaved, even when F. was resting, and G. was not in the room, as though it was no worse than when I impaled my arm on a broken chain link fence on the Fourth of July. I brought the BBQ, and parental Anniversary celebration to an abrupt end-though once I was removed from the fence, and it from me, everyone concluded that I would live to injure myself yet another day leading a whole new group of mostly boys through the woods. (Boys always did whatever I told them-it was girls I had to fight. You incapacitate one boy the rest get real cooperative, real fast.) I still have the scar-it went down to the elbow-I'll show it if you ask nicely.

So, I stayed with the men. And when I grew tired of sewing fur coats for my Barbies, painting cells in my graphic novel about six-legged atomic dogs who take over the world with the WWII Naval Base in Bayonne, NJ as their base of operations, disorganizing the color coding system in my mother's shoe closet just to hear her scream, and trying to get my German Shepard to obey telepathic commands in German...I went to go see what the adults were finding so funny.

Laughter like this had been in short supply in recent months, especially from my father and Uncle F. I poked my head around the corner of my parent's bedroom, and suddenly they froze. So of course, I walked right in, and stood in front of the TV. They had a really large bottle of Chivas Regal open on the floor, and both seemed to be deciding if they should make me leave. I looked at my dad, and suddenly he got that expression that preceded his saying something he shouldn't, doing something he shouldn't, or carefully teaching me to do all the things he was punished for in his childhood.

"Come watch. Do not tell, Mommy."

So here's my tribute to them both, in the vein of People Who Need To Be Killed.

People Not Worth The Price of The Gunpowder to Blow Them to Hell.

People who still like George Bush. Dead-enders should be dead. Period.

Nascar fans. Driving in a circle like a gerbil on a treadmill. Not a sport.

Grown women who use baby talk. It sounds bad, looks bad, is bad. You are a woman-not a cartoon character. Hear that Evil Aunt G?

E.D. Hill. Terrorist fist bump? Secret handshake? Does this dumb bitch think they signal attacks with sign language? Should the deaf be sent to Guantanamo?

Britney Spears and anyone related to her.

Carville and Mary Matlin. Two people that obnoxious, irksome and ugly should not have sex! They have bred!!

James Dobson, Pat Robertson, John Hagee...The Handmaid's Tale was a novel not an instructional manual.

People who tan themselves brown, and beach their hair white. EWWW!

Artists who use personal family details in their so-called art. Boundaries? Respect? Know those words?

Competitive eaters? Why? Gluttony is not a sport either.

Parents who use their baby carriages like battering rams. Is this why you fuckers had a child? So you can barrel down the street, and run over pedestrians.

Cheap rich people. Learn manners. Learn consideration. Learn where your wallet is!

The entire congress. Stop them before the white horse becomes a senator.

The bastards who stole 57,000 lbs of chicken from the FoodBank in Delaware.

People with "Empathy Deficit Disorder"? Being a selfish ass is not a disorder.

The geniuses who thought re-making The Day the Earth Stood Still with Keanu, and changing the plot was a good idea. Recall the Anne Heche/Vince Vaughn version of Psycho?

Geraldo Rivera.

(I'm sure I'll think of more...)

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Resilience, and Regaining the Will to Paint

Usually, I'm blogging about some national/international political event, or something cultural...but this weekend...that just isn't what I want to do. Now for something completely different. Seems like the time for rambling meditations on life.

We humans certainly are mysterious creatures. Our innate Primate sense of self-preservation, is routinely warring with our desire to self-destruct as spectacularly as possible. I took a tremendous amount of psych in college, though it had nothing to do with my major, which was fine arts, graphic design, illustration and cartooning. I was the only art major in my sorority; most of the girls were hotel-restaurant (a department our school was renown for, after Johnson & Wales), accounting, or nursing. So anything artistic, theatrical, or musical fell to me. Meaning, I was in charge.

Now normally, I like the idea of being in charge. I freely admit it. Except...when I have no choice in the matter, and already have more than enough on my plate.'s a burden. So I permanently became Skit Chair as well. I was also taking playwriting, and they knew it, so at exec. board meetings they would throw out uninspired ideas for rush, or Greek Weekend, for whatever came up. And I was expected-when I wasn't doing my school work, or being the philanthropy chair to come up with something cool. Then I'd bust my ass attempting to accomplish everything. My father always told me I could do anything, that no child of his gives up or turns down a challenge. Translation: don't fail, or I'll be deeply ashamed.

Seems I took this to heart and took on more, and more, and more. Gradually, as my father got sicker and sicker, my mom ceased to cope with reality, my job grew more demanding, and my boyfriend's mental health self-destructive primate that I am, of course I wanted to marry him. (Don't worry I didn't.)

This was not challenging myself. I had no time to myself. I had responsibilities. I ceased to paint. I have painted since I was 3 1/2 years old.

I have been agonizing whether or not to post this...I was afraid it may be too personal. I have been thinking about privacy, and respect and boundaries. I have been writing a manuscript about my family for a while. My old therapist recommended that I do this to regain the creativity that has been a part of me since I could first hold a brush or pencil. I am an artist. I am a writer, a storyteller. Putting intimate facts on public display cheapens the relationship. It is disrespectful. These people are dead now, most of them, but it is wrong to not let some things be private. Yes, no. Back and forth. I'm going to tell my story...but just not in a way that exploits what should be held close.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

"We Are Always Americans First!"

I'm still digesting the Obama speech tonight. It was presidential. It articulated the Progressive view of the world as common sense and fairness and a balm for the wounds of the Bush years. Wow...

Hillary's complete and utter narcissism just disgusted me. When you lose, just be gracious and concede.

Hmm...I guess this means New Zealand's Rugby Players are the Most Virile Men on Earth!!

I was about to go back to sleep when I came across this in the Daily Mail. Seems British doctors are claiming that pelvic exercises are as effective in combating impotence in some men as Viagra! Watch out UK medical professionals! The drug company hit squads are on the way.

The moves they say are most beneficial in combating ED are similar to the Maori War Dance the Haka, done by the NZ Rugby team the All Blacks. Squatting, slapping, and funny faces. Well now...laughter always gets us women in bed, does it not?