The little things

For some mysterious and bizarre reason, I have been preoccupied for the last few hours about past hurts, and betrayals. I don’t know where this mess comes from, but it needs to go back to wherever that might be. I think it’s passing a bit now, but I was greatly disturbed to be feeling that.

I’m not sure exactly what I was feeling – regret? Anger? Sadness? All of the above? That sounds about right – all together now, let’s ambush the human, just because. That’s fine. I didn’t have to act on the feelings I was having. I took the dog out instead and played some ridiculous 3-D matching game on my phone while she pranced up and down and barked at people.

It takes so little to make that little tiny-brained creature happy. Frantic and hysterical barking, for no apparent reason other than her vocal cords work, makes her happy. She was grinning like a fool, running back and forth and explaining to people that it’s her yard. I horsed around with her for a few minutes, and then we came back into the ice palace. It was still hot out there, and the sun had nearly set. I think it was 90 today, which does not make me happy.

Despite the heat, my meditation group had scheduled a day off from our regular meeting, and agreed to meet at a snowball stand. I was looking forward to it, because the snow ball stand advertised as being “New Orleans style”. I am always leery of edibles purporting to be “New Orleans style” because they are usually insanely hot, with no other spices but cayenne pepper in copious amounts that drown out the flavor of the food, or they have never eaten a New Orleans food item but figured “how hard could it be?” Well, those do not go well in my book, because it can be REALLY hard to duplicate the taste of New Orleans.

Anyway, this sno-ball place was the real deal. The sno-ball tasted just like the ones I get when I go home. They’re actually a chain – Pelican’s. I looked them up when we decided to go there, and had a very good feeling about them because they use the same ice shaving machine that people in New Orleans use. It’s called a SnoWizard, and it does obscene things with ice – shaves it and then puts some gris-gris on it and shaves incredibly fine. When the syrup is thrown in, the concoction is nearly creamy. It’s cold and sets me right on a hot day like today. I was a happy girl.

So, I’ll probably go there again tomorrow because I need to taste other flavors. And stuff. I will dream about that sno-ball – I had the Dreamsicle flavor today. Tomorrow might be something fruity, or they had a praline flavor which I’m curious about. Something to look forward to.

I’ve been watching the Alaska eagles more, and the young ‘un is huge now. It’s got a fair amount of feathers, and it’s wings are humongous. It still has the big yellow clown feet, though but was practicing standing earlier today. It hatched in May, so it’s fascinating how big this thing has grown in a short period of time. Mama Eagle, whose name is Liberty, is still doting on the baby bird, although she does leave it to its own devices more than when it was really small. She and Daddy still feed it by beak, although the little one is learning to tear apart fish that are brought in.

I must admit to having a bit of anxiety about what goes on in the eagles’ nest, though. The little critter is getting close to the edge of the nest, and that is 120 feet above the ground. I wish it would back away from the edge, and I’m yelling at the image on the screen, telling it to move. Oh, well. I guess I’ve become a little attached to the dang birds. Go figure.

I just watched a PBS documentary about New Orleans’ effort to remove Confederate monuments in the city, back in 2017-2018. I know all those places and those monuments, and the Mayor eventually prevailed and took down some of the largest and most visible – one to Robert E. Lee, one to P.G.T. Beauregard. Those momuments were commissioned and erected by the Daughters of the Confederacy. Apparently, the Daughters wanted to commemorate heroes of the Confederacy, but the film brought out that it was also to mourn their dead. An incredible number of men were killed in that war. An incredible number.

There was another monument that was erected by the White League, a KKK-like organization from days gone by. That monument commemorated a race riot that killed several white men, and they sought to memorialize that. This one had a totally different energy that made heroes out of several fighters, not a general or a battle, but a race riot. There were Black men killed, and white men, but the monument commemorated only the white men. Very weird, if you ask me.

That battle to remove Confederate monuments in New Orleans started well before the pandemic response, and long before the contentious Presidential election of 2020. This was before George Floyd, but the fire was already burning. The fire has been burning for so long I don’t think anyone alive today has ever lived without it. We’re going up in flames in very many respects, it seems.

The filmmaker discussed his story of making the film after it was over, and I related so much to him. He is multicultural, Black and Phillipino, and his father appeared at several points in the documentary. His father had wrestled with him a bit in past years about him claiming his identity as a Black man, and the filmmaker was not there yet. While making the film, he and his crew also travelled to Charlottesville during the Unite The Right rally, the one with “fine people on both sides”. After he saw the hatred and vitriol that night, and realized that a woman had been killed by one of the white supremacists, he was changed. He told his father later that he was angry, and he’d not felt like that before. Accepting himself as a Black man in this country was a different perspective for him, and he hadn’t realized what that meant before. To realize his identity, he had to give up feeling relatively safe in the world and navigating as not Black. I understand that.

This race crap is old and tired at this point, but apparently it’s here to stay. It’s been going on since Europeans first set foot in the New World. They brought racism and nonsensical concepts of race with them from Europe when they came, and it’s become a never-ending cycle of new and improved ever since. Their efforts have always been only temporarily successful, but they keep trying. I don’t know if they even know what exactly the prize would be. I sure as hell don’t get it – do they want to eradicate all Black people, and all non-white people just for lagniappe? And then what? I’m told they want to maintain superiority, but that’s a delusion in the first place, so I’m not sure what exactly they’re trying to accomplish.

These days, I have very little patience with bigots and intolerant people. Someone I know posted some homophobic nonsense on FaceBook earlier today, and it was hurtful. I chose not to respond to it or even acknowledge that I saw it, because the post doesn’t merit any of my attention or energy. I actually feel very sorry for her, because her world is so small and her life so flat that she has to focus on other people’s lives to know that she is not invisible. Bless her heart. She began her little poison pen diatribe with expressing how grateful she was that Pride month was over, because pride is a deadly sin anyway and nobody should have pride in a lifestyle that God has condemned. She went on for a while about Jesus’ dying to take away those sins and so on. Alrighty then. It’s not worth the argument.

People seem determined to force conformity on others. Conformity to their values, their religion, their ideas of right and wrong. Thanks for that, but I’m not having any, thanks. I’m not inviting anyone into my bedroom, or into my circle of friends, to approve or disapprove. I’m not in the least bit interested in how other people live their lives, unless they come into direct contact with me and deprive me of my inalienable rights. I’ve got other stuff to do, and I don’t give a flying fig what the hell these other people are doing for the most part.

We’re demolishing fallen condominiums and digging out more bodies from the debris. We’re trying to figure out what the hell we need to do with this pandemic and our response to it. The latest word is that even if you’re fully vaccinated, you should continue to wear a mask in public places indoors. I still wear mine to the grocery store and anytime I have to be inside with a horde of people I don’t know. Some people are doing that, but most not. So much for team work.

I’m a little hesitant to start meeting with people in-person, like say church or even restaurants if there’s a crowd. The reports about the Delta variant are frightening, and a guy I know let everybody know that he and his entire family have tested positive for COVID-19. The adults were fully vaccinated, but of course the kids were not. They’re going to be quarantining and following doctor’s orders. You just never know what the hell you’re dealing with at this point.

I wish there was some fairy tale sorcerer who would descend on this land, and magically melt down all the guns and then bonk people over the head with her wand so they’ll understand how futile their efforts have been. When people don’t even have – or make themselves open to – an inkling that something they say or do just MIGHT cause hurt or harm to someone else I have no patience with them. If someone tells you that you’ve caused harm, believe them. Own up to it, stand and deliver, make it right. Save the “I meant well” and the “I don’t understand why you are taking it that way.”

During these times, I’m not looking for miracles, even though it would be nice to have just a couple. I’m not going to change anyone’s mind, particularly not a mature racist that has their game on. Ultimately, I don’t care. Again, not wasting my energy on that. What I will spend time and energy on, though, is truth telling. It’s not my personal truth, but it’s what really exists, what really happened, with evidence. People can deny truth all they want, but that won’t change anything. Denial is not a river in Egypt – it’s a real thing. It’s a lie that gives birth to other lies, like a living organism. We build lies on top of lies on top of lies until we have a whole structure of lies, and that constitutes a system. A system of how we treat each other, how we live with each other, and everything else we build.

Denial is toxic, because lies are toxic. They are transformative, and we become the people we most don’t want to be. The system becomes self-aware and struggles to protect itself, and we have become its metabolic by-products. It is no wonder those of us in thrall to systems that work for us become unfeeling and uncaring, because we’re being consumes and digested by the very system we’ll kill to protect.

What then becomes of humanity? I believe we’re on a precipice of morality and integrity, and that which makes us human. Perhaps “The Matrix” and “Terminator” are prophetic visions that will indeed describe the late days of our humanity, that which separates us from other organic life. Doomed to a descent into inhumanity. We use our great attributes only to further our own ends and find new and creative ways to kill each other.

We are becoming more in tune with our self-interests, for better and worse. But I wonder, to what end is profit? To what end is the national economy? At this point, neither appears to serve our citizenry in its entirety. We fight to serve our individual self-interests, but who decides the benefits of that? Who among us can sit in judgement of others and decide the worth and value of a human life? We’ve seen glimpses of those people, and they look much like…us. But they are different, because their walk through this reality is very nearly unrecognizable to us, and there’s very little basis for authentic relationship. The crossroads, though, is that we can all be ended by the same things – microscopic organisms that we can’t even see, weapons that are manufactured on assembly lines, or the old-fashioned way. With our fists. Is this not suffering?

Billionaires of today are racing each other into space, all of them toying with their own private tourism mechanisms for space travel. I’ve been convinced for quite a long while that members of the dominant culture leisure class are trying to get the hell off this planet. They’ll leave it to the rest of us poor schlobs after it’s been pillaged and ruined. They’ll go to some other New World, and start this whole mess again, in a galaxy far, far away.

If at first you don’t succeed…try, try again – bash your head against the wall until it breaks. There, that’s better…except for that damned headache.

Don’t make eye contact. Keep your hands on the steering wheel. Say “yes sir” and “no sir”. Do what you’re told. Don’t wind up dead.

Published by annzimmerman

I am Louisiana born and bred, now living in Winston Salem, North Carolina. Fortunately for me, I was already living in NC before Hurricane Katrina decimated my beloved New Orleans. An only child, I now feel that I have no personal history since the hurricane destroyed the relics and artifacts of my childhood. As I have always heard, c'est la vie. My Louisiana roots show in my love of good coffee, good food, and good music. My soggy native soil has also shown me that resilience is hard-wired in my consciousness; when the chips are down (or drowned)...bring it on.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: