It is a sad statement that as I write this I can’t help but wonder if we are not heading back to a McCarthy-era place where we must fear the personal, familial and professional backlash of engaging in free speech! … such as this post. ‘Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid’ –to steal a line from an old horror film The Fly (how appropriate after all…)
Ten days have passed between election day and today. American Progressives—among whom I would count anyone who objects to the idea of electing a president who embodies all of the ‘isms plus being a shyster of the first order—have not been sleeping well. Moving on productively is the trick to getting back to some new normal. So…reviewing the seven stages of grief (we have after all lost something quite loved—that last shred of innocence we had about who we are as Americans) let’s see where we are now.
I am in Stage Six.
Just to remind you: it goes like this:
- Shock & denial
- Pain & guilt
- Anger & bargaining
- The upward turn
- Reconstruction & working through
- Acceptance & hope
To Arrive in Stage Six, this is what I’ve done:
- My ringtone is We Shall Overcome.
- Television is gone (not the thing itself which is after all the source of Netflix and Amazon Prime but the channels of fake news, sports, smutty and/or inane network ‘comedies’ and REALITY shows). I’m sure it will be back some day but for the foreseeable future it is banned—the sight of the smug aging white faces of the shyster and his buddies must be kept to a minimum if sanity is to reign.
- The NYT doorstep edition suspended briefly—or longer. I still have access on line but it’s easier to skim over ‘those faces’ on the screen then when opening up the front page to them before one is fully awake…gag me, etc….
- HuffPost US banned. I can get all of the regional and reliable world news from HuffPost Canada, UK, Australia and South Africa, Aljazeera and on-line PBS without seeing what I’m starting the think of as ‘the faces from hell.’
- Signed up for the January 21st WOMEN’S MARCH ON WASHINGTON. Have my plane tickets to NYC, and a friend and I will bus or drive down to DC.
- Making small but at least symbolic monthly dollar commitments to Move On, ACLU and Planned Parenthood. There will be other commitments as The Movement develops, and while all small, every dollar is a vote for what I believe in…
- Paying close attention to Bernie, Elizabeth, and others like them regarding next steps. One of the first has been to get Keith Ellison to assume leadership of the Democratic Party.
- Vowing to work hard (and we all know how much easier vowing is than actual doing—but here’s to a renewed commitment to ‘doing.’) to elect honest progressive Democrats as Mayor of Albuquerque and Governor of New Mexico. Preferably ones who can generate a bit of enthusiasm in addition to being hard-working and honest!
Of course it’s easy to write a Saturday morning post about all of this. I think this time however, IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT ALL OF OUR RESOLUTIONS ARE KEPT. Just watched Geena Davis (The Fly on youtube) saying with fear, trembling and loathing in her voice “Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid.” Watch this when your enthusiasm is lagging Marjorie!
Off to the Free State of California for the holidays.
This is not really about our beloved machines; it is about the pleasure of the programming, carried on any device, which encourages us to sit passively viewing moving stories on screens, large and small.
Me, I love them—all those stories whether fiction, fact, even the occasional spectacle. Until they tires me out and I can get back to other (more) worthwhile things in life like reading and writing and walking and cooking and painting and thinking.
But it seems I must have escape times that last for hours or even a couple of days. I’ve always done this. In my pre-television, pre-Netflix series years I simply stayed in bed all day in my pajamas, reading and reading. My mother let me do that instead of going to school every single day. Thanks, Mom.
Now sometimes I do the book days but more often than not, my story binging is in front of the tube. That is not all bad, not at all, especially with a few interesting series, heretofore undiscovered, to suck me in: House of Cards, Doc Martin, Orange is the New Black, Weeds and at least two Scandinavian crime/comedy dramas.
For proper escapism the ‘entertainment’ must be somewhat intelligent while still not requiring serious concentration. House of Cards doesn’t quite fit that bill since it demands undivided attention but Doc Martin is quite perfect. If you haven’t watched it yet it’s like this: picturesque English village with an assortment of quirky characters whose stories are played out in the doctor’s office. The doctor is likely autistic and definitely acerbic and his love interest is beautiful but a bit odd herself. Doc Martin is House with extra British humor and slightly more endearing characters in a setting as gorgeous but more user-friendly than Downton Abbey.
The weekend is drawing to its lazy close but I still have one more job to do. Time to revisit The Good Wife. Thank god I must return to work tomorrow morning.
Buddy T. is WATCHING US.
By the way…Downton Abbey is back January 5th.
I just did a brave thing. Had my DirectTV service suspended for a month starting today. Save $75. A good thing. I will be gone the entire time EXCEPT FOR THE NEXT THREE DAYS. Okay so in these three days I would only have watched a couple of hours of news and the smarter-than-average Friday evening programming on PBS. Okay okay, I know I can find it on-line…but it is not the same as plopping down on the couch and mindlessly pressing on and channel change. Okay okay okay I whine about no time to read or write. How work interferes with my real life. But part of the blame is TV isn’t it? Honestly? Now for a month NO TV. UNTIL JUNE 2ND WHEN THE KILLING RETURNS and I am in a Minneapolis hotel room with AMC.
When I came home from work I checked to see if the TV was still in service. It was. Piers Morgan was interviewing Donald Rumsfeld. Rachel Maddow told a story about how the US, Russia and Iran all agreed on something today–a wrestling-related thing. And on PBS a zebra stallion killed a baby in the herd that had not been fathered by him. WHY IN THE HELL AM I SO ADDICTED TO SOMETHING THAT GIVES ME THOSE KINDS OF CHOICES?