Being Sick Sucks

Being sick…sucks.

Being chronically ill sucks even more.

My Twitter screen time wasn’t dramatically up last week because I think I am some grand maven whose voice just has to be heard in public discourse.

It has more to do with:

a.) Though too sick for much else, I am able to lie on the couch, watch TV, and listen to and simultaneously read the news, and

b.) I used to be a reporter in my younger days and the Twitter platform is full of users paying attention to the news of the day, so it interests me more than other platforms, and

c.) It is easier to write a Tweet than work on a blog when you are chronically ill. Kudos to those who are able to manage their autoimmune and other disorders and do both.

When it is fibromyalgia pain, using meds, I can do both. When my depression becomes overwhelming for me, I fall silent. Sometimes for months.

But when I am nauseated and dizzy as well as in pain, I cannot function. My couch becomes my safe haven, the one place I can navigate without my internal GPS swirling and my stomach churning.

Not that certain Tweets cannot have similar effects on my system.

Take Senator John Cornyn’s (R-TX) Tweet quoting Mussolini as the political voice we should use as a compass point for the type of country we should be voting to support in 2020.

Never mind it was an inept attempt to conflate the issue of socialism and how far we take that path. In truth, we do have social programs in this country when it is for the commonweal. Access to healthcare for all, having as highly educated a citizenry as possible, and stopping and reversing climate change are not wholly incompatible with capitalism to me. Nor overly socialistic ideas.

The point is “I am old enough to remember” when true conservatives quoted Buckley, not dictators allied with the Axis powers of World War II. (In other words, the people we fought a generational war to defeat because they were – exterminating Jews and other critical things.)

I think many of today’s GOP political crop are part of the party because it more closely molds to their personal moral/business-centric values – or because the GOP has been more malleable to such. Do many of them have any true ideological, philosophical reasons for being Republicans? Reasons that are grounded in, say, “The Federalist Papers” or a limited and constrained view of the Constitution? Nah, not so much.

In fact, I think their “originalist” view of the Constitution and its Amendments is more like the Kleenex view – to be crushed and crumpled in their “own” original thinking and discarded when their views and the many years of Supreme Court consideration of Constitutional law does not align.

Psst. Hey, GOP, it is the SUPREME Court – not the “it only works if it meets my objectives” court. Not the packed court. Not the “let’s block the Presidential right to appointment” court.

(My personal heartburn over Merrick Garland is that President Obama’s candidate did not get a hearing – if he were not confirmed after that, well, like it or not, that’s the process.)

And that’s my other point – we have systems, processes, and ways of doing things that have developed over the last 200+ years because they work. They bring order out of the chaos of competing ideas into something w-o-r-k-a-b-l-e that we cooperatively agree to live together with – in society – as a nation.

With the Presidency of Donald Trump, Republicans have thrown process out the window. They have chosen fakery over truth. They will hand Trump a Memorandum of Understanding with China on trade but call it by anything other than its name to convince Trump it contains what he desires.

Because the Emporer needs desperately to be told he is clothed, when everyone can plainly see he is not.

In their rush to gain the political upper hand, I fear Democrats will make the same mistake (substituting radicalized voters and a presumption there is a supply of unlimited small donor voters for Trump’s Emporer.)

Please, for 2020, can we call things by their true names? And not trample the Constitution? As originally written and later interpreted by those with the legal brilliance to do so, without partisanship? And focus on what is w-o-r-k-a-b-l-e for as many people in this country as possible? To their benefit of the entirety of the SOCIAL community that makes up these United States?

And please, can we have quotes from leaders who have not suppressed their peoples in furtherance of any political ideology, right or left? Much less be allied with those who have? (Yes, Mussolini had concentration camps, Silvio Berlusconi.)

These seem like very small asks.

Now, please excuse. Nausea has set in. The 2020 type.

Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com



To Snark Or Not To Snark: Question Of The Day

I have felt very “snarky” in my Twitter posts this a.m. Perhaps it is this half-headache I have due to sinus stuffiness as early as mid-February in an Atlanta that has seen daytime temps up in the 70s and turn around and be in the 40s the next day. But stuff has started blooming. And my head IS hurting. Should I blame weather or climate change? Frankly, in my present mood, I will just blame President Trump and call it a coin toss today. (Ah, finally, I have found a use for Trump – blamecatcher.)

While I didn’t watch The Donald vs. Beto competing rallies, I have read much about them. I have repeatedly looked at the video of the BBC cameraman assaulted by a Trump supporter. And I think that everyone is missing that at that moment, Trump was not only denigrating immigrants and asylum seekers from the Southern Border, but Asian Americans as well.

I did not realize the border wall would also keep Asian Americans out of the country. Oh wait…they are Asians who ARE American. I think they ALREADY belong here, Mr. President. 🤦🏼‍♀️smh

Had I been in El Paso, I would definitely have been jamming with Beto and the band. His vision of who we are as a nation is much more appealing than Trump’s dark, dystopian world. I mean, the man won’t even keep a dog. That alone should have been his absolute disqualification to be President-forget Putin.

Speaking of Russia, Kremlin aide Vladislav Surkov says we need to be more afraid that Russia is worming its way into our conscience than its interference in our elections. Yeah, that bare chested photo of Putin on horseback is rather unforgettable. But am I conscience-stricken about it? Not really.

Meanwhile, the Moscow Times announced that an “aurora” of polar bears has landed on a remote Artic archipelago. After checking the dictionary to make sure “aurora” was not also a grouping of polar bears, I felt compelled to send them the proper definitions of the word. And those bears were sooo cute. Like I said, I am full of snark today. (Also sinus stuffiness and my half-headache.)

I even snarked about Laura Ingram sending Trump a “comfort photo” of the crowds OUTSIDE his rally so his feelings wouldn’t be hurt that Beto had more people INSIDE his venue than Trump did. Well, snarking at Ingraham is actually something I periodically do, so maybe I shouldn’t feel too badly about it.

Is begging Hillary Clinton to sue Trump for copyright infringement for appropriating as a printed slogan the title of her book, “Stronger Together,” “snark?” How about sending her a tweet with praying hands that she at least send a cease and desist letter?

Oh Lord, he is on TV talking about his “big, beautiful Wall” and how well we are doing economically with the Trade War with China. He may keep going to the border with great frequency, but he obviously hasn’t talked to any soybean farmers in the MidWest recently.

My headache just got worse. For this, I do blame Trump.

To snark or not to snark? My Catholic belief would tell me to “not snark” is the more Christian attitude.

But my headache. So – snark. My answer and attitude for today.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Writer’s Block

So I just finished watching “The Wife” starring Glenn Close.

While I don’t want to blow the movie for anyone who has not yet seen it, the final scene made me ache as her character, Joan, puts her hand to the blank page of her own possibilities.

I know that ache.  It has been with me since I was ten and wrote my first story about a robin sighting in the woods surrounding our lakeside home. It told me spring was on its way, and I had to share that news.

But like Joan, I have always doubted anyone would want to pick up a book that had my name on it as an author.  Not because I am a woman, mind you, but because I have always been afraid I had little to say, or that what I said would not be beautifully enough told.

My writing career has always been peripatetic, despite my degree in journalism; six years working for a local California newspaper; a win for my paper of a California Newspaper Publishers Association award.

Yet it was always my writing skill employers most appreciated, regardless of my official job title and duties.

After self-publishing on Amazon Kindle my own work of spiritual poems a couple of years ago, I thought I was finally able to settle down to write all the things I need to say.

Yet my fear of the irrelevance of my stories has stopped me cold-I am afraid they will end up strung out like Christmas lights upon the bushes, with mostly burnt out bulbs punctuated by the occasional sputtering light.

I so want all my words to shine.

I stopped blogging right before Christmas out of a sense of holiday depression and Trump fatigue. I was tired of his daily outrages spurring my posts rather than what I wanted to write myself.

But having met the character of Joan, I am encouraged to face the blank pages of this blog and the cursor that blinks wildly at me from my laptop.

Like her words, I am determined mine will be hidden no more.

With my former publisher, Dick Blankenburg, Five Cities Times-Press-Recorder, 1982