Sadness place

Earlier today, I wondered: where is sadness in my body?

My first thought was my heart. That was too obvious and a thought rather than a feeling. A few, split seconds later, I sensed my feet. Again, here I was returning to my feet.

A few months ago, I resolved to care for my feet in ways that I care for my hands. I’m still not doing that across the day as my feet are below my waist, not easily above my waist hundreds of times a day. Yet, I am offering more attention, soothing embrace of my two feet and ten toes. Still, this is not enough.

I won’t replace my shoes and socks with some sort of glove for walking but I do wonder how to afford ny feet more love when they are adjacent to the ground and so much of my day is spent upright, and when I round up, my eyes are six feet off of the ground. And my feet are just about six feet away from my brain with all these other body parts in between and clamoring for their own sort of attention, affection, acceptance, allowance, and appreciation.

So, the sadness. It may also be in my back. Weighing on my back. Scratching my back. Hunching my whole body forward, leaning forward towards the coming onslaughts of the rest of the day and future days. Tightened in my back. And constipated like knots in my back.

I was asking for the location as that may be a passageway into my tears, if and when I can locate the sadness. The mild sadness of four decades isn’t the pangs of sadness that beget sobbing. Mild sadness has created a callus of enduring, and of keeping on in the presence of so much shit that abounds and surrounds. I’ve banished certain categories of shit and suffering — quitting jobs, eliminating manipulators, ghosting on dickheads, refraining from professional sporting industry hoopla and hype from devouring weekends and evenings. But there’s thousands more types of shit and suffering beyond these few.

And I’ve pushed the squalor into some far corner or high shelf in a closet within this body where I don’t stick my hands or cast my eyes. Switching from neglect to attentive is not an easy pivot. Or maybe it is, but I’m in need of ways to come into that sadness without dissociation or critical analysis. That feels like the balance needed for bike riding, not leaning too far towards the side of critical analysis not leaning too far forward or backwards that I flip over handlebars or fall off of the bike seat. I learned to bike at a late age, later than most, and maybe, I’ll do something similar when it comes to learning to feel the big sad. Maybe that place where my butt is on the seat and my feet are on the pedals is not that far away. But, I ought to figure out where to place my feet and my hands and where to place my back without getting too heady as I go there.

Get a ducking clue

As Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor says:

But it does mean that there is intense insecurity in this country. Social dislocation means people don’t know where they fit. Immigration gets the blame. It’s totally racist and it is about class and economics. It is both at the same time. Race and class are entwined in this country, and the constant efforts to separate the two create confusion.

But that’s why we need a fucking political party that can challenge that way of thinking. A party that can argue with this framework. Instead, the argument is just ceded to the right….

These clowns in Congress are laughing all the way to the bank as they do the bidding for, to be crass, the capitalist class that is running things!

Picking on the youngest ones

That mark, David Shor, has the audacity to chide the 20-something volunteers, temporary workers, part time workers, interns and entry level employees for the Democrat Party.

Shor picks on the young adults, when there’s layer upon layer of the Old Boys Network in campaign consultants, lobbyists and other industries that orbit around partisan political.

Shor picks on the young adults when there are the incumbents and first time candidates that come from the traditional places resulting in the likelihood that they will get their blessings and backing of the bloated Establishment of the Democratic Party.

Shor picks on the young adults when there are the donor class who invest in disappointing mediocrity that enshrines modest tweaks to the status quo rather than robust interventions and interruptions oc systems that are broken for most families, adults and children, but systems that serve the plutocrats.

And this wunderkind wunderkid is heralded for concluding that 18-29 year olds are more progressive and more liberal and more radical than the typical Democratic voter. Note: there’s an aspect of confirmation bias considering the swaths of adults eligible to vote who are to disgusted by Democrats and Republicans to identify with either of the two main political parties.

But this Obama campaign acolyte is being repurposed and repackaged because the Democratic Party knows that it faces multiple existential crises. First among them, that the older voters who preferred HRC in the 2015-2016 primary are dying while tge teenagers coming into voting age are much more likely to vote for Bernie Sanders abd AOC types of candidates.

And, the Old Boys Network can’t stand it.

In part because the white guys in power, who benefit the most from nepotism and it’s-who-you-know patronage, don’t want to share power and have to adhere to equity. The white guys don’t want to have to give up half of all the seats at the table and half of all the positions to women. The white guys don’t want to have to give up 20% more of the seats at the table to men of color. The white guys don’t want to have to give up another 5% of the seats to gender nonconforming and non-binary people. The white guys do not think that their slice is only 35% of the whole.

That said, the white guys in power do not believe in equity, fairness, or representation. The white guys in power do not believe in this basic form of democracy.

Too many white men in power who put the letter D after their name will collude and conspire with Republicans to defeat or thwart changes coming from the reluctant Ds, those of us who pick that affiliation as the lesser of two evils and a compromised, hollowed political audacity.

Shor looks to the history of the likes of Bill Clinton, John Corzine, Chuck Schumer, Terry McAuliffe, John Hickenlooper, and Steny Hoyer. He trusts that there will be plenty more doors and floors for him to rise to, as the Democratic Party has plenty of seats for just his type.

Juicing War

But it is easier not to mistreat prisoners if you no longer capture them.

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/03/opinion/us-war-afghanistan.html

Samuel Moyn says a lot in that piece about the lies, deceit abd immoral of US warmongering. What I would add:

But it is harder not to war when you’ve juiced it with $700B annually.

Closing windows

In order to reduce the lingering browser windows, seeing that delicio.us is no longer functioning, I’m going to put these here so I find em when I’m ready for each:

https://food52.com/recipes/85727-key-lime-meringue-pie-recipe

https://www.cheftariq.com/recipe/lebanese-garlic-sauce/#recipe

https://www.bonappetit.com/recipe/ginger-citrus-cookies

Pineapple Tarts

light brioche burger buns

Clearly, we have some gluten to attend to.

Abyss

Some humans want to bring abysmal into the abyss.

Driving along highways, I see different colors and textures on the surface of the water. Some days, the stature of the ocean looks more pronounced or elevated from my line of sight as I move along familiar paths, which may simply be an optical illusion or may be something far more abstract seeing that it is beyond my ability to comprehend it.

I read of chemosynthesis giving life rather than the familiar photosynthesis and I read of the 50 paths to bioluminescence and I read of the luciferins (compounds) and luciferases (enzymes) tiny drops of confirmation that there so much underneath the abyss.

The creatures of the deep have been putting on the world’s greatest light show for tens of millions of years. Widder thinks that if people could witness this spectacle—or even just be made aware of it—they’d pay a lot more attention to life at the bottom of the seas and the many hazards that threaten it.

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2021/06/21/the-deep-sea-is-filled-with-treasure-but-it-comes-at-a-price

We humans can choose this: “Meanwhile, she writes, “we are managing to destroy the ocean before we even know what’s in it.””

Or, we can choose this: “Some of the seas’ most extraordinary animals live around hydrothermal vents—the oceanic equivalents of hot springs. Through cracks in the seafloor, water comes in contact with the earth’s magma; the process leaves it superheated and loaded with dissolved minerals. (At some vents, the water reaches a temperature of more than seven hundred degrees.) As the water rises and cools, the minerals precipitate out to form crenellated, castlelike structures.”

Erdrich on Great Spirit

Perhaps all of creation from the coddling moth to the elephant was just a greatly detailed thought that God was engrossed in elaborating upon, when suddenly God fell asleep. We are an idea, then. Maybe God has decided that we are an idea not worth thinking anymore.

Erdrich, Louise. Future Home of the Living God. Page 20. 2017

Dear feet,

Oh, how I relate to you with complexity, challenges and discomfort.

A dear friend reminded me today of “rooting in my feet” and it is something for each day. I asked him if he would “keep reminding me about rooting in my feet.

You are such a fraught place within my body as I continue to adjust how and where I place you and position myself over you. I stumble with how I use and locate you when I stand or when I sit. You are a place where I habitually do not take up space where I cower in the first four inches up from the ground in an attempt to take up less space, which feels both uncomfortable and agonizing. I will continue to recognize that you are the roots that nourish the trunk and branches and limbs and appendages that the rest of me rises from.

In another conversation today, another friend said how the arms of an embryo extend from the heart which immediately made me ask myself where do the legs and feet extend from? My guess is from the sacrum and/or hips and/or spine which makes me curious about how I might feel differently about you if I was constantly acknowledging how you are a continuation of my spine and my back and that the gap the torso to you is small even though the legs are vast, as are the three sets of joints in between you and the hips.

For much of my life, I’ve appreciated the lengths and places you’ve taken the rest of me. Yet, I have been negligent towards your care and the pristine nature of who and what you are. I read last year how researchers cutting up cadavers noticed how 40% (or so, if my memory is in any proximity to what was written) of the tension and strength within the arch of the foot does not come from the familiar arch on the bottom side of you but that 40% of the muscle capacity is in an arch in the top of the foot.

As I searched to find a reference for that dissection history, I came across how much written about you is in terms of pain and how many bones and muscles inside of you. Names that are unknown and bewildering and some things to learn more about …

here: the talus and calcaneus in the hindfoot + the 14 toe bones and 5 metatarsals in each forefoot + the 5 tarsals of the midfoot

… and here: like the muscles of fibularis longus and fibularis tertius and fibularis breviary

There is so much about you that I have yet to heed. And for this, I thank you for your patience and guidance and for your inability to run away and leave the rest of me behind.

What to say instead

I’m imagining what could have been said differently by the Vice President earlier this week while she was in Guatemala. What would have been inclusive, acknowledging the differences that others endure, along with some of her own storytelling. For excerpts from statements made to the press;

I want to be clear to folks in this region who are thinking about making that dangerous trek to the United States-Mexico border: Do not come. Do not come,” she said. “And I believe if you come to our border, you will be turned back.

https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2021/4/1/22359917/biden-border-mixed-messaging-crisis

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/kamala-harris-do-not-come_n_

https://www.foxnews.com/media/kamala-harris-guatemala-comments-media-brand-her-racist-months-ago-gutfeld

Talking w the children about Kamloops

How are the children?

Listening to the stories of genocide, savagery, the incomprehensible behavior of whites that litter through history.

Last week, the children listened to the news detailing the research in Kamloops/Tk’emlúps te Secwepemc that revealed that 215 children were buried in a mass grave.

That wasn’t a school. It was a prison.

That wasn’t a residential school. It was an assimilation hall.

A few days prior to the stories out of British Columbia, I had picked up:

  • I Am Not a Number (Second Story Press, 2016)
  • Little Bird #1, by Darcy van Poelgeest (Image Comics, 2019)

The week prior, we were exposed to the language of lies wrapped inside a tone of cunning deception that qualified the officials who kidnapped and stole indigenous children as “nice” and the act of forcibly relocating children as “tricked” with stories of nourishing meals.

Lies perpetuated through decades and centuries, repeated in news accounts, embellished in children’s books upholding the sanctity of white colonizers, refraining from mentioning the horrors of abusers and authorities.