Real life conversation related but it happens around here ALL THE TIME:
The problem with white people pointing at racist white people in another place and pulling a “Ugh, Florida sucks” or whatever isn’t that it hurts the feelings of white people in that place who try not to be assbags. I’m definitely guilty of being aggravated that some white liberal made a big anti-Texas statement without giving me credit for being an okay person, which frankly is not okay person behavior at all. That’s white supremacist horse shit on my part, because the actual problem with painting Florida (or Texas, or Arizona, or where ever) as a bunch of racist conservative white people is that it totally erases the people who are the victims of racism in those places AND in your mythical “not racist” alternative. The whole point of “Ugh, Florida sucks” is so that everyone knows we’re not those white people over there. Let’s send a flare up to illuminate how terrible they are. (But forget the racist to whom part; that’s not as important as discussing white people some more.) Let’s all talk about how glad we are to be somewhere else, where we don’t have to worry about racism because we’re not doing any.
The reality is that if racism isn’t a thing in our little white lives because we aren’t racist, we are racist. If we can ignore the fucked up things that white people and the white supremacist structure of society do to people of color right where we are because we’re busy being proud of ourselves for not lynching anybody today, we are racist. That is a racist act - and like I said, one I’m totally guilty of. It’s as white supremacist as a dude in a pointy hood, because we aren’t giving one thought or action to anyone who isn’t white too.
|Bean:||Why is this [Playskool] Batman bigger than this [Lego] Batman?|
|Me:||Because minifigs are all exactly the same size and shape, no matter who they're supposed to represent.|
|Bean:||EVEN THE INCREDIBLE HULK?|
|Me:||Yes. Definitely. Maybe. I think so? Lemme check.|
|Me:||[Googles. Finds a puffed up looking Hulk minifig for sale on a UK toy website. Why is he always right? Ugh. Whatever. BEAN 2044!]|
And if so, whose culture is being appropriated there?
Oh HEY, great horned owl hanging out in my backyard during a snowstorm. I thought y’all were nocturnal, but what do I know? I’m not a bird. Speaking of birds, did you know you guys are like the last living descendants of dinosaurs? I watched this TED talk the other day, and some dude was talking about how we really could turn a chicken into a dinosaur, albeit a small one, and that today’s 12-year-olds are demanding this. Speaking of kids, did you know… Hey, wait! WHY ARE YOU FLYING AWAY, MAN? I WAS JUST GETTING STARTED!
The very best thing that happened in 2012 is we bought a house. For the first time since college I feel like I really live somewhere. And my books, which had previously been scattered across the country, taking refuge in the attics of various relatives? My books are reunited! (With each other. Not me. I’m a peripheral at that reunion party.)
Ah, to be putting down roots.
In which the artist has graduated to oil pastels.
So help me I’m thinking about introducing him to oil paints.
Make some local friends. Preferably without resorting to joining a parents’ meetup. Or hitting the undergraduate bar scene. Or volunteering at the library. Or getting a job at Best Buy.
Actually? Maybe you should just move here. I mean, you’re weird too, right? Let’s be that together.
In January I had my dream job. It fell apart in April when the awesome startup I was working for started to run out of money. So I was sad about that for a while but when I looked up from my navel I realized I had a new career path and some really fantastic connections. I’ve now started my own business and it’s amazing. Also, I’m not scared. (Who are you and what have you done with Maria?)
Bean was diagnosed with ADHD. I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia. This was THE BEST NEWS, because it means that despite all evidence to the contrary, neither one of us is an asshole. We’re both getting healthy. We’re both learning to accept ourselves for who we are. And we’re doing it together. (Along the way, I rediscovered the love for painting that I’d abandoned after high school.)
I’m finally an approximation of the mother I want to be. I am calm and centered and present. (Usually.)
Finally, I came back to the internet. Slowly but surely started reaching out, rekindling friendships, breaking out of my hermit-in-crisis-safety-shell that I’d worn for a few years. I’m forever grateful for your warmth and acceptance. (I love you guys!)
2013? All signs point to awesome.
|Me:||I specifically requested no remote control vehicles.|
|Uncle:||I don't have to listen to you. Anyway, who got you your first Nintendo? Against your mother's wishes?|
|Me:||Yes, and I am forever grateful for your contribution to the rewiring of my brain. However. The Nintendo didn't FLY.|
|Uncle:||Would this be a good time to tell the story about the time I took you to the fair and you peed on my shoulders? Because you know, I didn't tell that story at your wedding.|
|Me:||I NEVER HAD A WEDDING.|
|Uncle:||Would you like a beer, Maria?|
|Me:||I thought you'd never ask.|
|Bean:||When we build my treehouse, there's going to be no girls allowed.|
|Me:||What about Mommy?|
|Me:||What about your classmate and her sister who live across the street?|
|Bean:||They're my friends, so they can come in.|
|Bean:||Grandma's my favorite!|
|Me:||So who are you keeping out?|