Monday, February 21, 2011

Taking Out The Trash

Now that my treasures are secure, I have turned my attention to throwing out bags and bags of old bills and bank statements - all of which were in my married name.  Mentioning my married name in public violates the terms of my divorce decree, so I won't do it.  I was never attached to that name anyway especially since people had a tendency to call me "Pat" when my legal name was Patricia P. Sxxxxxx.  I always felt like Pat Sxxxxxxx was an old lady playing mahjong in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale. Not a bad life, in its way, but I could never relate to a person named Pat Sxxxxxx - even when it was me.  To my ears, the first name I always use, Tricia, never fit with Sxxxxxx or I would have used Tricia Sxxxxxxx when I filled out forms.

Tricia Nolan doesn't really sound right to me either, but it's better than Sxxxxxx and the fact is that I'm adverse to using my real name on the internet anyway.  It's troublesome on Facebook in particular because Teabaggers and other undesirables from High School can infiltrate your friends list and the next thing you know, somebody is quoting Fox News at you before you've had your coffee.  Pseudonyms solve that problem.

Now that the moon is waning, the time is right to jettison all manner of shit from my physical space.  Maybe it will clear my head, too.  The rallies in Wisconsin are helping to slow down the spin cycle in my mind much better than Egypt did.  I liked Egypt and everything.  It was inspiring on TV and Twitter, but the US looked like such jerks sucking up to Mubarak until the bitter end that you could never once separate out the fact that we had supported that bastard for thirty years and he walked away with a personal fortune of an estimated 70 Billion Dollars.  That's Dr. Evil level money, for sure, and now the Egyptian Military says that if anybody investigates that wealth, it's going to be the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces.

People were all jazzed about the prospect of an Egyptian style uprising here, but I was skeptical because there isn't a critical mass of hungry people here like there is over there.  Wisconsin makes me optimistic, though.  It's nice that the Koch connection is getting so much publicity - although that's on the Internets.  I don't know what they're saying on TV because I haven't turned on the TV in days and days and days.  Now that I think about it, I'm pretty sure it's been off ever since Velvet stopped playing Xbox and got on the plane to Wyoming.

One of the things that has been swirling in my head has been the intersection of Cornel West, Martin Luther King, Jr and Barack Obama.  Cornel West sent this message to Barack Obama a year ago:

My favorite part is when Cornel West says that if Barack can't keep the legacy alive, he will become "another colorful caretaker of an empire in decline and a culture in decay." This year, Dr. West called Obama's use of language "masterful," but declared that you can't bring in Geithner and Summers and say you're building on the legacy of Martin Luther King.

Predictions suggest there will be over 60,000 people at the capital in Madison today, and there are Solidarity rallies around the country. The teabaggers are rallying in support of the Governor, and they are funded by the Koch brothers' Americans for Prosperity (Forbes 02.18.11 via Mother Jones).

Forbes is Mainstream so maybe the news will spread - but that would require reading and I maintain that Americans these days would rather watch a video than read. Preliminary personal research suggests that the video must be under 4:20 or few people will even watch it, and it better capture the viewer's attention by about 42 seconds.

That American attention spans seem to be limited to 420 is a curious little coincidence.  As most everybody knows, 420 is a marijuana code word among positive stoners.  In Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, 42 is the answer to the ultimate question of Life, The Universe and Everything.  Sadly, nobody could figure out what question goes with an answer like "42."  They eventually settle on a question in Bob Dylan's song, Blowing in the Wind, "how many roads must a man walk down?" But what if the question is "What times ten equals 420?"  What if, in real life, it turns out that 420, or more specifically Weed, is a key to solving the mystery?

There's a lot of mysteries out there in the Real World.  I reckon there's a few mysteries here at Menopausal Stoners World Headquarters on Central Park West.  It's good, though, to have enough energy for the Real World again.  Crawling out from under suicidal depression takes a lot out of a girl.  Notably, I did it without Therapy and Medication, unless you count my moderate use of marijuana as medicinal, which brings us back to 420 again.

I'm not sure 420 has anything to do with Cornel West - but once I saw him on a panel discussion up at Riverside Church with Manning Marable, who is a professor at Columbia for History, Public Affairs and African-American Studies.  Manning Marable talked about how a disproportionate number of Blacks wind up in jail (The Prison-Industrial Complex) and lose their voting rights.  Locking up people for non-violent crimes like smoking and selling weed effectively eliminates the voting rights of potential Democrats.  It's hard to separate out the Plutocrats from the Policies.  Although the John Birch Society eventually lost a lot of clout over things like Floride being a Communist Plot, for a time the John Birchers were as integral to Conservatives as the Teabaggers are to Republicans today.  Not surprisingly, Fred Koch, father to the Billionaire Brothers, was a founding member of the John Birch Society.

If we're lucky, the rallies in Wisconsin represent the beginning of a national movement to finally take out the trash.  A young woman named Anna has been on the front lines in Madison.  She made this video, which is over 4:20 but is making the rounds in Blogtopia nevertheless because she's provided an accurate, insightful explanation of the situation there - unlike the national media (Thanks, Dr. Monkey)

*note* Thing of Beauty Number 5-101. Anna Grindrod-Feeny and the emerging generation of activitsts.


just jane said...

I applaud your post. I live in Wisconsin, and feel the hostility everyday.

Did you really lose your rights to your name in your divorce. How strange, and somehow freeing. I chose to keep my ex's name until I remarried, and then I hyphenated my maiden name and my new husband's name. But here I am just jane.

I work in the healthcare field, a non-profit, and have never paid a union due in my life. I have no benefits, none. I have no sick pay, no vacation pay, no health care, life insurance. I chose to work there because I am dedicated to working with people with disabilities. I am needed. Oh and of course there is mandatory drug testing. God forbid you might want to get high after having BM flung at you.

Anyway, I just wanted you to know that I respect your writing. I have been chipping my way through your work for the past few weeks, and enjoy it. Peace!

Susan Tiner said...

I can't understand anything I read or see regarding US politics if it's less than 30 years old.

Though I've always voted for the most progressive candidates I believe have a chance of winning and governing well, I feel less confident than ever of being able to figure out who these people are. I don't trust much of anything I read or see to provide a fair assessment of what's happening, what people stand for, or anything. I just feel manipulated.

We live in a post-free press era.


I wanted to take back my maiden name after jack's death..but kept it for mojo..and to piss off his mom..but now? I think it's time.

Vancouver Voyeur said...

M and I have been paying attention to the WI protests, first because M is from WI, second, because her sister's office is right above the protests. Anna did an awesome job explaining it all! Thanks.

MRMacrum said...

I caught the video of Anna somplace else. SHe's got the fire in her belly. That's a good thing.

Another good thing is you are almost on your way to your next adventure in Life. Excellent.

PENolan said...

Susan, I know what you mean. It seems like all the traditional sources of information are not part of a global propaganda machine. I select my own internet sources, but then I feel like all I've done is support my own biases. It's hard to learn anything new if all you do is support your biases . . .

Granny - no day like today ;) I'm getting mine officially switched back (read Social Security Number) to my maiden name before I move this summer.

Hey V.V. - her sister's office is at the site? Great view, but must be hard getting to work.

MRMacrum - it is an adventure for sure. Very exciting, mostly. It IS a good thing there are young people like Anna. All that fire in the belly gives old poops like us indigestion.

justjane - my divorce decree prohibits me from publishing anything in my real name, particularly my married name, until after my son turned 18. Since he's nearly 20, I could probably use my real name now, and I suppose the argument would be over what constitutes "publish." Some might consider the blog "publishing," but I don't. I've never actually been published anywhere - unless you count worldwide hippies and Black Magpie, and I suppose they should count.

The fact is that although Buzz Kill insisted that clause be inserted into the decree, everyone knew there wasn't really anything he could do if I chose to violate the agreement. I signed off on it simply to expedite the process. The stuff I read at KGB is often so sexy that I prefer to use a pseudonym anyway. I'd hate to have a stalker around HQ.

Thanks for being out there, and hope things in Wisconsin work out. A nation is watching ;) Bummer about the drug testing. It's just not fair.

Jennifer said...

Taking my birth name back after my divorce was a pain in the ass, but remarkably effective in shaking off some dust. I hope (I'm sure) it will have the same effect on you.

I've seen that video too. Articulate, insightful, straight talk. Beautiful indeed. Too bad politicians didn't talk that way.

Cali said...

I really don't see the point in not allowing you to use your legal name to publish anything unless Buzz Kill is some famous person and doesn't want you to capitalize on his name. Otherwise it was just a stupid power play.

I'm really glad to read that you are feeling better. Despair is never a fun ride.

(Hahaha! my verification word is "grump." That about sums up Buzz Kill, don't you think?)

PENolan said...

Cali - stupid power play sums it up. I am counting the days until the marital assets are completely distributed.

After I take a nap in the sunbeam in my room, I'm sitting down to reconcile the books.

Jennifer, I am shaking off the dust and letting fresh, sunny air into every room. It's a bit brisk, but that helps your circulation.

Lisa said...

I don't even know where to begin so I'll tell you that I applaud your lack of TV. I use my now to listen to music mostly.

Vancouver Voyeur said...

It's hard not only getting to work, but getting work done with all the noise outside the windows.

Lloyd said...

You have an interesting blog. Lloyd

okjimm said...

//throwing out bags and bags of old bills//

HA! Sometimes I even pay a few before I throw them out.

FYI the 22 yr old student has posted another vid.... where she explains how teachers collectively bargain...

cordially okjixxxx

PENolan said...

Lisa, it's almost always hard to know where to start these days . . .

V.V. I just read that the state assembly passed the bill, so it looks like things are going to get even noisier in Madison - Hopefully around the country too with all the rallies this weekend.

Thanks, Lloyd

Okjimm, thanks for the link. I haven't seen anything about it. As for the bills - dang, I've got nothing to say except Fuck 'Em.

Organic Meatbag said...

Sxxxxxxx... hmmm, that's an odd that Slavic? hehehehe, j/k

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