What the?

Last night, I dreamed that this horrible hairy sharp-toothed animal with a brain just as smart as a human was attacking me and another person. It was terrifying. The animal couldn’t be outsmarted, and all I had was a club to deal with it, and it was attacking the other person, so when do you bash without hitting the person you are trying to protect?

Good question, when do you bash without hurting the person you are trying to protect? Same problem with bullets. When do you fire away, and hit the target, rather than the other poor human in the same predicament? The two are too close. Too enmeshed for a sure shot on the mark.

Reminds me of my son. Speaking up is like striking or bashing. Keeping quiet is complicity.

Martha gave me the most wonderful book about headstrong sons that we love and fear for. The Stardust Lounge by Deborah Digges.

The other choice, it seems, is to understand that these angry young men learned everything from their moms. Digges navigated the muddied waters of her son’s teenage years pretty much the same as I, with terror and trepidation.

Then she turned a corner. Allowed him the strength of his convictions – the space gave him the opportunity to figure out the ramifications of his actions, and to really choose his course. It worked. Thanks, Deborah, for you insight…


census, the house police

Yes, a neighbor said that to me. What are you, the house police?

Yesterday was the last day of my census work (only areas of Spanish speakers are left to do in my neighborhood, and I, alas, not because I haven’t tried, am mono-lingual). I am sad (it’s no longer a source of income) and glad (I don’t have to play big brother anymore.) Sure, we need the numbers for our representation in congress, as well as the money for our roads and hospitals. But how do you answer someone who asks why the government needs birthdays and race demographics? Why do THEY want my NAME and PHONE NUMBER? They want to know — does sound sort of creepy.

To find out how many people need age-related benefits. To figure out the number of school children, people that need social security, what have you. Yes, but how does that information help someone who is 35 and why should they care? I have more questions than I have answers.

After the usual pat questions and responses, one anonymous young man said, hey, that’s really not that important. I said, ok, then, so you don’t agree. Have mercy on me, then. They will fire me if i don’t collect the information.

He looked at me, point blank, don’t give me those big sad eyes, he said.

I looked at his nose ring and his stretched ear lobes with the big holes, and realized I wasn’t going anywhere with him, but to my next stop.

I backed off. ok, I said. thanks, anyway. He backed off, too. We had disconnected, from one person to another, neighbors, to people from other planets.

And to think we are all in this together, traveling in the same boat. Going upriver, without a paddle. Silent, with no real way to talk about it.


The day in the life (and old age) of the census

Am I getting old? Eventually. Sooner than later.

Last night, I dreamed that I was handing over 100s of dollars to the dentist. Which I plan to do (actually 1,000s). Staving off old age? Or staving off starving?

Yesterday, I stopped by an assisted living facility. It looked like a dump from the outside, but had people just like me on the inside.

I think the administrator told me 50 residents lived there. Will I have to count them? (I hope so, probably not).

I was surprised. Although it was shabby (after all, this is Lake Worth), it didn’t smell. Not of urine. Not of death. People looked old but not nuts. And not all that old, to boot.

One lady did not have teeth. Is it really worth it to shell out all that money to the dentist for caps to keep my teeth from cracking? Is it really that bad to have false teeth? I wonder how much false teeth cost? (that took me to the Internet, $2,500 for an upper or a lower).

Does that make me feel better? A little. Not much.

Back to the assisted living – it didn’t look half bad. I not only think I could live there, I might even fit in.

Contrary to private opinion, I AM getting old…

still have them.well, some of them.

still have them.well, some of them.