Untitled

Untitled because I don’t have the right word. Words have been failing me as of late…

Do you ever get so angry or upset that there are no words? I usually just end up stringing a bunch of four letter expletives and still no one knows what I’m trying to say.

George Floyd. The entire encounter was horrific. The aftermath, the same. The inequality, the injustice, the heartbreak, the destruction of lives and homes and businesses. It is crushing.

Of course he didn’t deserve it. And I cannot even comprehend what justification there was for the aggressiveness. He may have been using a counterfeit bill? He seemed intoxicated? So what? That becomes a death sentence?

I am not black. I cannot understand the fear and hate that too many people have. I wish there was something I could do to help. I want to be a voice… and I feel like a fraud. I don’t know what it’s like to be black and I don’t want to pretend I do.

A couple of days after George Floyd’s death, I went to the gas station. I pulled up to the building, in a parking spot. In the car next to me was a young, black man. He was on the phone and he looked scared. His head bobbed from right to left and left to right. I followed his line of vision and I saw two white police officers. They were just standing outside. They didn’t have anything, they weren’t going inside, they weren’t wearing masks. I immediately felt my chest tighten. I was scared. I went into the store, got what I needed and when I came out, everyone was gone. That one tiny instant in time and I felt so much stress. Fear. And now anger.

There is a burning rage in my belly, a smoldering angst, an overwhelming feeling of helplessness.

I understand why there are riots. There have been many, many times where peaceful protest did nothing. Time to amp it up. The atrocity of it all, I imagine it compounds and years of abuse of power offer fuel for the fire.

I don’t know what the answer is… part of me thinks it has to be love. My sentimental, sappy nature tells me love conquers all. Until.

Until I see the President. Encouraging, inciting violence and not for the first time! We need leadership and the White House goes quiet and dark.

I hear the news reporting telling me their is a vigil being held where “George Loyd lost his life”. Really? He didn’t lose his life. His life was stolen!

He was murdered and the cops responsible? No accountability. Derek Chauvin? He offered no apology. No remorse. The cops had to go to his house and arrest him? I can’t imagine killing someone, there being tons of recordings of it and not turning myself in. He couldn’t even feign surprise? None of the other officers had the inclination to intervene?

Murder at the hands (knee) of police. Riots followed. The Corona Virus is still a thing. And Trump? He’s busy complaining that people on Twitter are being mean to him.

I want to believe love is the answer, yet there is no love for him. There is no place even for basic tolerance for him. He is a disgrace, he is unfit to be president and I cannot believe he hasn’t been removed from office yet.

When I don’t know what I can do to help, at least I can take solace in the fact that at least I care. It’s not enough, I know it’s not enough and I’m willing to listen and that seems to be a big part of what has been going on.

90% Is Showing Up

I was talking about me, not you. You can stick around if you want to but don’t expect anything brilliant… Seriously, you won’t miss anything if you don’t ready through this post and I’ll probably never even know you didn’t get through my entire near-incoherent ramblings… but if I do… Kidding. It’s late and I’m tired. And, I want to practice what I preach. Not that I go around preaching all the time to everyone anyway… Yep, this is how it’s going to be. See? Ya didn’t miss a thing.

Why am I writing when I think I have nothing to say? Because I am a writer. “A writer writes- Always”. Success and it’s weight/measure of worth is often a matter of opinion and an abstract concept. Tayla wants to be a writer but she is scared she won’t do it right, so she does nothing. It took me a good 20 years to realize there is no right or wrong way… I guess, if you want to get all technical, I suppose there is a wrong way but the wrong-est way to write, is not at all. Sure you’ll write badly. I just did. (Wrongest?) We can’t all write all right all the time (did I lose any of you there?) I tell her it takes practice. It’s a discipline (it’s a pain in the ass). Steven King talks about showing up. Even if you just sit at your desk. You’re only allowed to write or be still. Guess who learned she gets restless, real fast? It’s rare that I’ll write because I’m bored but it has happened. Twice.

I decided I wanted to blog on Wednesdays and Sundays. It’s getting close to Thursday, but I can still sneak this in under the wire.

With Noah on the way, our family was talking about when/if/where we should move. What are we looking for? I thought we needed another bedroom but that’s not it. Then I thought “maybe we don’t need another bedroom, just the space arranged differently”, but it wasn’t more space. I really want a second bathroom but I am willing to compromise on a single. What I will not compromise on is: hardwood floors. Sounds silly, doesn’t it? It does to me and I’m the one thinking it. I’m trying to rationalize it, understand it but- it. will. not. budge.

When we started our discussion, Don & I weren’t even light years near each other. He wants to stay in the suburbs, I want to move back to Minneapolis. He doesn’t care if we have a deck, patio or lawn- I NEED at least one of those. I’d like a yard (and maybe a dog!).He says we can afford this price bracket, I thought something a little different. Eventually, I started to cry. Not to win an argument but (and hopefully a lot of this is the hormones talking) because I felt trapped. We’re never going to move, we’re stuck here forever. I understood why he wanted to stay in the area, school, work, to piss me off… but I knew he didn’t understand why I wanted to leave.

Living in Minneapolis was one of the best experiences of my life. It was while living in Mpls. that I met Don and we moved into our first place together. It’s where we lived when our daughter was born. I remember spending hours in the bedroom window, listening to the street traffic, the drunks speaking several volumes above what they needed to be heard, all that music… I watched the lights. They skyline. That one building, I still don’t know which one it is but the top of it was rainbow colored and changed as if the wind were moving the lights along.

It’s the epitome of hip. (Shit. Did I just use the word hip in a non-medical way? Fuck.)

It’s great for people watching, story writing and cultivating an appreciation for what’s around you… I mean, that’s what it was for me. I felt alive! Vibrant! Empowered. I want Tayla to have that same experience. She’s all about it, btw.

And what does any of this have to do with the price of tea in China? Every place I lived in Minneapolis, had hardwood floors. Just by seeing hardwood floors or a couple of archways  brings me right back. I feel younger. Healthier. More creative. If I could find that in the suburbs, I could stay. I need that though. That connection is like my umbilical cord. One toward what I considered my best self. After realizing how much time I currently spend at home and knowing I’ll soon be here/there even more? I’d better LOVE it!

Hey, I did it! I did write a post today. Nice. If you’ve read this far, thanks! If I could ask a favor? Does anyone know what the other 10% of success is? And who has my cupcake?

 

Not What I Expected…

So here it is again, Sunday. Time for Slapstick Sunday but I don’t feel so slapstick-y. I’m sure funny things have happened during the week yet I’m feeling more… sentimental.

We took our daughter to get her hair cut today. Four inches fell to the floor in as many seconds. We took her in for a couple of reasons. One, it was just time. Two, she’s back at school tomorrow and I didn’t want to have to fight with her about washing her hair and the third reason is because her birthday is coming up. Next month she will be a teenager.

Usually on her birthday, I do a photo session. This year I wanted to do it early. There’s a wonderful building in Minneapolis, off of Washington Ave that is idea for a photoshoot. I was excited to get started!

First we HAD to buy a new shirt. The one she had on barely covered her belly button (can you hear her eyes rolling in the background?). So a-thrifting-we-will-go. After a little looking and maybe a bit of bribery, she agreed on some denim jeans with roses embroidered on the leg and a pink & white top, the kind that are like a tube top-on the top and then free flowing from the bra line down. Oh, she hated it! It was adorable!

Hair looking good? Check. Presentable clothing? Check. Directions to downtown? Check. And we’re off. And I’m sooo tired. It hurts to keep my eyes open. The building is open until 8:00pm and it’s only 5:00. Totally enough time to go home for a quick nap!

It’s a little after 7:00 when we leave. I know I’m cutting it short. It’s not that it’s a long drive but I need the sunlight for the effect I want. The sun is in perfect position to blind me all the way until I miss my exit. Backtrack. Park. And then? Where the hell did the sun go? Who knows. We’re already here, we’re going to make the best of it.

I feed the meter and lug all of my crap out of the car and cross the street to the historic building. I take in a deep breath before pulling the handle on the door. It’s stuck? Nope, it’s locked. It’s only a little after 7:30. What. The. Fuck.

Now that the sun is gone, it’s also much colder, as well as darker. We cross the street back to the car and I throw my stuff in the back, making sure I slam the car door loudly.

I started the car and the gas light came on. Fantastic. I ask Siri where the nearest gas station is and we’re off again.

Tayla hasn’t said much during this time but I can see her playing on her phone and get irritated. This isn’t how it’s supposed to go. We’re supposed to be bonding. Reflecting. Taking in the beauty around us, not playing Minecraf… holy shit. She’s taking pictures. The skyline. The bridges. The neon lights. The flashing lights. The art on the side of buildings…

“Didn’t you used to live down here?” she asks.

“You did too” I tell her.

She smiles brighter than all the lights at Target Field.

So, I didn’t get her birthday pictures done today. Instead we took an impromptu tour of the city and I can’t wait until we do it again.

minneapolis-skyline-from-stone-arch-bridge-jon-holiday
I Love This City!