Tag Archives: frustration

On the occasion of a horrendous election pending and the women v women way we behave


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Organizing yet another bake sale to fund the hospitals the men wouldn’t let women earn money to build

Ah, women.

I am one, I think, and yet I am filled with puzzlement at them. I have a group of marvelous women friends who I adore. We all would come running to whomever needed support, would offer casseroles, muffins, homemade soup, a warm shoulder to cry upon. My friends keep me alive, make me laugh, give me joy.

But many would leave the recipient’s house, commenting to each other, “Well, I wouldn’t have dealt with things THAT way,” or, “Where’s that man of hers? Why doesn’t he help?” or “Did you see what state her house is in?”

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“Can you imagine?”

It’s the same thing that makes some (never me, I simply don’t care) rearrange the dishwasher if someone else loads it, that makes us repack suitcases for children and men, that sighs at the general incompetence of everyone except us.

It’s why women who succeed are universally regarded with suspicion – by other women! – and why we have never been able to fully mobilize to take back our rights from abusers and others. I still think the best way to frighten abusers into submission is to show up en masse

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“Whose that over there throwing stones at us? Is that Gladys?”

at court dates and funerals of those harmed and stand there, as the police do, a physical and huge threat. We are over half the population. But no one will do that because of the sneaking suspicion that the woman might have somehow deserved it – after all, he’s so sweet…and he might like us. Heck, we might even date him. He wouldn’t hurt US.

So here we are in the midst of an American Presidential election between a career politician woman (gasp! No!) who is somewhat more terrifying than all the male career politicians (somehow that is okay, though slightly sleazy), and on the opposition, an utter boor. And he is still in the picture, though everyone is hoping he’ll step down and

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“My name is Mike Pence and I own your uterus!”

let a truly evil man take his place, one who talks smoothly with the tongue of repression, rather than revealing his slithering insides.

Well, say many, at least it wouldn’t be a WOMAN. Sadly, even women say this, their envy of success being so poisonous against their own gender that it blinds them to the fact she is better qualified than anyone else who ever stood for the office. And allowing them to accept men who openly or quietly demean women, treat their bodies like possessions, shut them out of top positions, keep them virtual slaves.

I can’t help but feel enraged, though I know the green fire of jealousy burns in me, too.

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Happy green

So how can we fix this seemingly permanent line in our nature? Can we erase the poisonous green and replace it with a kinder, springier one?

I’ve met some women who have. One of whom left us this week – my brother-in-law’s sweet mother – one of the kindest women I’ve met, with a belief in her faith that must have been her weapon against jealousy. Unlike many faithful, she never used it as a hammer with strangers. She simply did good.

I know another few women who do this, who step back from selfishness and do good in their quiet way. I love them all and struggle to be more like them.

But much as I love them, I wish we women would get together, stop doing good quietly, and take over the world up front. Enough quietly rearranging the dishwasher in the background, while sighing in exasperation. Let’s teach our fellow world inhabitants how to do things right. As with these quiet good women, we can show by example, but frankly that’s not working well enough. A thousand people tidying the Titanic wouldn’t have saved it from sinking. A woman who knew how to drive the boat who was able to wrest control from the men who blustered their way in charge might have. It’s time for women to do some blustering.

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“If only there was a smarter person to take charge! One without breasts!”

But you know what? Probably in the lifeboats (of which there would have been enough because, um, planning), other women would be whispering, “Who does she think SHE is? She should mind her own business.” And the men would be shouting four letter words and commenting about breasts.

I despair.

 

Moving on


Just listening to Stan Carew on Weekend Mornings – he plays the best music and woke me this morning with a rousing fiddle tune by Natalie McMaster. I’m feeling my toes tap under the covers as I sluggishly awaken.
But the song spoke to me.
Lately I’ve heard from a quite a few people who are by choice or not in a position where they are living in a hellish situation. Family dynamics, unhappy marriages, awkward locations, bad jobs. It seems so many are trapped, struggling against ties, but unwilling to take the risk, unwilling to bear the swirls of awfulness that come from change. We’ve all been there at some time….
There’s a part of me that still feels badly about the dissolution of my marriage. I was brought up to believe that marriage was a lifetime promise. But sometimes the contract is in fact broken, and then sometimes it is the right thing to leave, rather than stay and let the poison of our anger or hurt eat away at everyone in the family. Or so I tell myself. I don’t know.
Life is short. Should we make ourselves unhappy for all of it? Or should we move on, so that we are capable and have the resources to be joyful, bring joy to others? I’m not saying to cast aside things casually, but if we tried our hardest and it doesn’t work, what good are we doing breaking ourselves against the rocks?
See, the thing is, where we are at may seem like absolute hell. But, like standing in a prairie rainstorm, two or three steps to one side or the other may bring us into the sun again. Change doesn’t have to be dramatic, in fact, we are such small bugs in that prairie rainstorm, a tiny change may well be enough. A willingness to speak up, to try something a different way, to reach out or push away…
But we also have to be willing to draw our line in the dirt and say ” this far and no further.” And if we are still miserable, we can turn, and move on.

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Wheels within wheels within wheels


Sometimes I realize I’ve lost a few little grey cells over the years.

Perhaps it was the tequila at our Mexican Christmas party many years ago (and the “pour everything into the pot” sangria). Perhaps it’s the MS. Perhaps I’m not drinking enough.

All I know is that my patience for trying to figure out things like websites or designing processes or even online classes is at an all time low.

I’m taking a class on WordPress through the Sisters in Crime Guppies group, taught by someone with a true gift for patience and explaining to we poor wanderers out here in the wild. Still, I’ve managed to kill my computer twice already and my printer is still having a nervous breakdown. I ask it to print and it tries, yes it does, and then it simply throws its hands in the air and weeps, virtually tossing sheets of paper over its face in a fit of existential angst. I’m right beside it, threatening it with unplugging or replacement or counselling with the guys at the place I bought it (who I suspect don’t use approved electronic counselling methods). At this point, I’m okay with it if they use a bit of brutality.

I want to learn stuff. I like learning stuff. But seriously, I’m beginning to wonder just how much I am supposed to know about everything simply to survive these days. The requirements are growing instead of shrinking and I am THIS CLOSEto going back to a fountain pen and foolscap and hiring someone else to manage everything else for me.

Like my printer, the messaging I get is incomprehensible and I haven’t even got the language to understand it.

It’s like my ukulele. I love it. I keep ordering books to learn more. I think I understand music a bit. Then I get a book on ukulele riffs and I can’t make head or tails out of the first page in the book.

Or trying to rent a car! I rented a car using my points – an exercise in total frustration right there. So I called to check on it and the guys there ask me, did they tell you about mileage charges? And I said no. Because they never mentioned a word about it. Apparently I am expected to know to ask about EVERYTHING in my life, all the time.

Anyway, I’m rambling here. Which is probably part of the problem.

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