Thursday, June 25, 2009

June 25th, 2009 The Day of Punctuating Deaths

I set my alarm this morning. I know. Shocking! It was to me too when that sucker went off at 8:06. I hardly ever set the alarm, so when it goes off, there is no snoozing. I get that adrenaline rush that only an emergency sets off. It pretty much poisons me. But I'm out of bed like a shot.

The reason for the ungodly wake-up hour is an 11:00 dental appointment. I've been fighting a recurring toothache in my lower right back teeth. I know from past experience that it involves more than one of those giant molars and there is a bridge between those affected teeth. So all in all, losing those two teeth will leave three spaces that are my main chewing surface. Go ahead, laugh. Remember you may be young now, but you are growing older by the day. One day your teeth will fail too.

I took my shower at 9:30. Well, that was uneventful. Maybe it's a good omen. Clean and shampooed in under ten minutes! Maybe a new record for me. The moisturizing and deodorizing and hair drying takes longer than the shower. Finally I am newly dressed and clean all over. I have forty five minutes before I have to leave the house. More coffee and another couple of smokes.

My dentist's office is in my neighborhood. This is one of the reasons I go to Harold. That and the fact that he's both good looking and an accomplished musician. He, like Tom, my ex, can play anything. I have never heard him play, but know that Tom doesn't exaggerate anyone else's talent. And until my teeth started failing, I thought Harold was one hell of a dentist. But now all he wants to do is get rid of the old dying teeth and put implants in their place. I will not do my "implant rant" now, but I'm sure you can imagine how a poor old woman with no dental insurance feels about implants. I sometimes contemplate having them all pulled and getting myself a set of loverly choppers just to get it over with.

I put my hand on the doorknob of Harold's office at exactly 11:00. It's locked. I look in the almost shuttered windows and see that the place is empty. What the Fuck! This is wrong. I go to the dentist's office next door and ask them if they know where Harold went. They have his number and call his office. Marilyn, Harold's receptionist answers the phone and tells me they moved a year and a half ago. "Well, Marilyn, that doesn't explain why you didn't inform me that you'd moved! Did you send cards to patients?" She tells me the new address and I am not amused. It might as well be in Bum Fuck! She says,"It'll only take you five minutes." It actually takes fifteen. But as I'm driving there I hear on NPR that Farah Fawcett died. I always thought she was a bit to whispy and flaky, but men seemed to like her. Tom used to force me to watch Charlie's Angles. But then I saw her in Extremities and The Burning Bed, I thought she was stunningly good. I saw her documentary about her fight with cancer and it was moving. By the time I get to the dentist's new place, I've mellowed a bit thinking about Farah.

By the time I get home, it's close to 1:30. Ms M is having her latte and smoking a cigarette at my kitchen table watching the news when I walk in. I just get inside when the phone rings. My neighbor T wants to bring her dog over for a romp with Marley and to help me trim Marley's nails.

Marley is a strong and vociferous opponent to the nail trimming procedure but is no real match for the two of us. On my own she'd be a handful. She may look sweet and small, but she's one strong and squirrelly little actress screaming before a single nail is trimmed. Oh the eye rolling hysteria of it all.

The next phone call is the tree guy my neighbor recommended to finish cutting and removing the Navaho Willow the Power Company topped earlier in June. He says he's a few minutes away. I put Roscoe in the big house and grab my clippers. When I was walking T out front I noticed a few over hanging limbs that needed trimming so they didn't smack people in the face as they walked on the sidewalk in front of my place. That's how seldom I go out front and look around.

The tree removal guy seems nice and the estimate's reasonable. We walked the property looking for tree problems and he seems impressed with my forest. He knows his trees. He came here from South Carolina but grew up in St. Louis. I like his accent. We schedule for next week and shake on it. I have a copy of the estimate in my hand.

I go inside and call Z. She answers on the second ring and sounds better than she has in weeks. Then she asks me if I can come over tomorrow and help Rachel, her youngest son's mate, go through Z's closets and clear them out. This is something that I can do, but after I hang up I get a very strange and creepy feeling. It's is as if we are to clean out the deceased's closets. She wants us to decide who gets what and then cart the rest to the thrift store. I wonder if she'll live to regret this plundering of her clothing. But then this evening I remove my closet doors so I can clean it. I too will lighten my load. Take the burden off the living. Make better use of space. I know we are just place holders in this moment.

I was distressed all evening listening to the wall-to-wall coverage of Michael Jackson's death. I am appalled at the wretched excess of it all. As if there were no other news story worth covering today. It reminds me of the Anna Nicole insanity. I know Michael was a monster talent. I get it. He was talented and famous and terribly fucked up. And god help his children and all the other children he fucked-up. I know he was a talented victim and I know he victimized other children. I know I will offend some of you, but I had no doubt about the fact that MJ was a pedophile. It was a shame the prosecution was so bad. There were other cases to chose from. Picking the one they did to prosecute was a stupid mistake. I know someone is tearing his hair and screaming "Leave Michael alone!!!!"

F-22 War Planes Are Not Wanted By Military, Yet House Passes Defense Bill That Includes The F 22. Please sign yet another petition.

Dear Peggy,
Tell the Senate - If you don't stop the F-22, Obama will!

Email your Senators now and tell them to cut these wasteful warplanes so Obama doesn't have to!

The other night the House Rules Committee denied Barney Frank's amendment to strip out unnecessary F-22s from the Defense Authorization bill.1 We were really angry when we got the news, and we weren't the only ones: President Obama has announced that he might veto the entire authorization bill if the planes aren't taken out.2

But there's another chance for our leaders to do the right thing - the Senate is taking up their version of the bill right now, and if they leave the planes out, we can avoid an ugly confrontation.

Email your Senator right now and demand that they keep these wasteful warplanes out of the bill - so the President doesn't have to.

Why the added F-22's were allowed to remain in the House version of the bill is a mystery. But the weapons-builders are a powerful lobby in DC, and sometimes have influence regular citizens don't know about. Fortunately, we've got some powerful allies in our corner too: including President Obama and his Secretary of Defense who called these planes 'a big problem' for the Pentagon.3

Now the fight moves to the Senate where we've got plans to work with the president's team and the Pentagon to make sure that the Senate version of the bill does not include these unneeded planes. You can help by sending an email your Senator right now and asking him or her to get on board.

Matt Holland
Online Director
TrueMajority / USAction