Mary Beth Writes

This evening Trump is speaking to a political rally in a Tulsa venue that can hold 19,000 people. There will be no social distancing. The place is enclosed. Masks are optional. Boggles the mind.

Yesterday morning I went to a local Stein’s garden mecca to see if they have marigolds on sale yet. They don’t even have marigolds NOT on sale!

But this happened.

I wore a mask. There were only about six other people shopping while I was there and they were all masked, too. The clerk, working outside in that 85-degrees of drenching humidity, was also wearing a mask.

There we all were, believing science and taking care of ourselves even when it was kinda uncomfortable to do so.

It took the cashier a long time to check me out because of a store protocol and a mistake. I told her no problem; I wasn’t in a hurry and it was too hot to stress. These days one sees so many people caught in moments of ugly, stupid entitlement that one feels like a hero for being patient and saying thank you.

I’ve been walking pretty often along the street I formerly didn’t walk on. (Diary #71) I’ve said hi to a few people, had one mini-conversation with a dad and his two daughters, and greeted the same woman three times in this past week. She sits on her porch a lot. She now waves when I walk by.

I read this excellent essay this morning.  Rebecca Solnit: The Slow Road to Sudden Change  https://lithub.com/rebecca-solnit-before-the-uprising-comes-the-work/  

“A great public change is the ratification of innumerable small private changes; the bonfire is a pile of these small changes lit by some unforeseen event. Looking back on the American Revolution, this country’s second president, John Adams reflected, “The revolution was in the minds of the people, and in the union of the colonies, both of which were accomplished before hostilities commenced.” Adams was a waffler on slavery, both opposed to it and opposed to strong measures to abolish it, but he offers a useful description of how change works: the revolution was in consciousness; the war with Britain was just an outcome of it. Chateaubriand said something similar of the French Revolution, that it “was accomplished before it occurred.”

Maybe the world we will live in next year is happening now in the small but persistent choices we make towards justice, science, knowledge, and our neighbors.

...

 

PS: The roses grow on That Block.

 

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What is ain’t exactly clear, there’s a man with a gun over there, tellin’ me I got to beware. Kept hearing this song earlier this week. Time is getting closer for this old mostly white lady to get up off her backside, mask up and wade to the front of line. Will cops kill old ladies who look like their grandma? May need to find out.
Mary Beth's picture

They arrested a white woman today in Tulsa for wearing an "I can't breathe" t-shirt. She had a ticket for the rally, was sitting silently on the ground - and for this they arrested her. The irony being that in two weeks there will be humans throughout Oklahoma, in the hospital, on their sofas, in bed, coughing and saying, "I can't breathe."

While trump is out in the world holding rally's to build up his already inflated ego while needlessly exposing thousands of people to this virus, Mr. "B" and I are slowly getting to know each other... Wednesday was date number two for Mr. "B" and I... It was a simple day without too much fanfare... No Gardens to visit or homes to look at or even a park to have a picnic at... Just sitting around drinking Hibiscus Tea and talking, a whole lot of talking... . Dating in the age of Covid, I can't think of a better way to ride out this storm then to create a new and exciting relationship... More to follow...
Mary Beth's picture

And tonight the world turns from Spring to Summer.

Sounds wonderful, Franc! Good pacing. I know your evening was more enjoyable for you and Mr. B than for the Orange Menace and his ego. Blessings, peace
Leonard's picture

The bonfire will be exciting, because it is hard to say which way it will go. The pandemic is giving us time to walk on new streets - that is, streets that were always there, and always nearby, but which we never had the time to visit. What else is near-at-hand, but not explored? What are the values and beliefs that we have always held, but not really looked at or evaluated? I hope that this is a time to find that values like compassion and equality are still important. That mutual respect, like you had with the cashier, is more important than selfishness and carelessness. De Tocqueville warned that America was in danger of "the tyranny of the majority," that would blind us to abuses to Native Americans, African-Americans, and anyone outside of the mainstream. It's easy to see how that is at work today, with LGBTQ, immigrants, and others. Now is the time for creative thinkers and writers to call up those values that will preserve the community for everyone.

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Quarantine Diary #198 Who we still are ...

I’ve been trying and trying to write but it hasn’t happened so this morning I looked at some of my old stuff and found this from ten days after 9/11. Made me remember who we are.

I think the miserable karma of Trump is happening. I hope we will be okay. I’m not sure how talk about the harm he has done and is doing now. 

But we … we are still who we are.

The flowers in the photo were a surprise gift, just yesterday, from a friend.

I have edited it a bit. 

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Last Sunday our congregation met in real time at an outdoor amphitheater along the Fox River. Everyone brought their own chairs and we social distanced like the thoughtfully PC UU’s we are. It was lovely to be together again.

Quarantine Diary #178 9/10/2020 What retired people do all day …

This has been a nutty day. Not a bad day, just a day one hopes no one asks, “How is Retirement going, Mary Beth?” For those who are not retired and wonder what we do all day, perhaps this will illuminate what we dare not tell the young.

I woke at 6:30. I got right up because I am Purposeful. However, Len was still sleeping soundly (he stays up way later at night than I do) and he was tucked into the quilts like a large butterfly burrito-ed in a Target-brand comforter. I quietly looked at my favorite websites, the Washington Post, and Twitter for … an hour.

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The photos are all from Franc Garcia, who took them in Kenosha last week. Thank you, Franc.

Part I.

The American War of Independence was won, or more aptly stated “ended,” at Yorktown, Virginia on October 19, 1781. I’m sure you knew that because a couple months ago I asked Len, “When did the Revolutionary War end?” and he looked at me with astonishment that neither he nor I knew. Not even the year.

We were pretty sure it was over but lately one isn’t completely sure if any of the wars are over yet.

Outpedaling ‘The Big C’: My Healing Cycle Across America by Elizabeth McGowan

“A powerful, rollicking adventure that takes us across America and deep into one person’s life-and-death experience.”

Carl Zimmer, one of America’s foremost science writers

 ...

Outpedaling ‘The Big C’: My Healing Cycle Across America

A Book Review by CAMILLE-YVETTE WELSCH

Outpedaling "The Big C": My Healing Cycle across America Elizabeth McGowan Bancroft Press (Sep 6, 2020) Hardcover $28.95 (268pp) 978-1-61088-514-0

Elizabeth McGowan lost her father to melanoma when he was forty-four and she was fifteen. She rediscovered him during a bike ride across the US, following her battle with the same disease. Joyful, introspective, terrifying, and sobering, her memoir is about reconciling her mortality with her father’s.

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