When I was a little girl I loved the Muppets. I was only allowed to watch them on commercial breaks on “In Search Of…”, which if you were a science nerd in the 1970s was THE science show. Not only because it was hosted by Leonard Nimoy, but because it was non-fiction. In the 70s you didn’t have multiple television sets in a household unless you were filthy rich, which we were not. We were comfortably middle-class so we had one of those behemoth sets that was as big as Godzilla and weighed as much as the Elephant’s Foot, that eldritch artefact of Chernobyl that squats at the bottom of Reactor 4. And in my family, no children’s show ever took precedence over what sperm donor wanted to watch while he slugged his beer or wine or scotch or whatever. Or came back in from his alone time in the garage shag shack he had made out there. So I positioned myself as the Official Channel Changer (no remotes, those were The Children) as close as safety allowed (my mother was murder on sitting too close to the screen) so I could leap to the set and spin that dial as soon as Mr. Spock faded out, back to “The Muppet Show” in progress. Sperm donor always made me sit right there next to the dial, in defiance of my mom’s “too close to the screen” orders, to flick back to the “In Search Of…” channel every so often so he wouldn’t miss any.
I didn’t see much of the Muppets.
I was allowed, on very special occasions, to watch the holiday specials. Or when sperm donor had duty or went TDY (temporary duty), to watch the show. On those occasions, my mom and I would also watch “I Love Lucy”, and we would laugh. Gods, our house never had any laughter, so that was such a treat.
I spent this entire past week being reminded that the reason I call my friends Muppets is because I treasure them like I do “The Muppet Show”.
I rely on my circle of friends, which I have built slowly and carefully, to help me through my life’s tough times. Because frankly, none of us can get through this whirlwind madness without help. When I was a child (and then a teenager, and then a young woman) I had absolutely no-one to help me through my tough times except my parents, and they failed miserably at every turn. They failed because they had no-one to help them. They had left all of their family and friends two thousand miles away and moved all over the country and world, fresh out of high school, without a clue, and the military did not do anything to help them or me. Since then things have gotten better, but in two generations the progress has been FUCKING PATHETIC. I am the product of complete and utter failure of not only two people but an entire society.
So I am going to change that. My parents always told me I could not possibly change the world, and they are flat-out wrong. I have already changed the world. When I was in high school I was a member of Amnesty International and every week I wrote one letter to South Africa pleading and demanding the release of Nelson Mandela. For years I did this. And one day, Nelson Mandela was released from prison. I did that. I was part of something huge and massive and ongoing for a very, very long time. The South African apartheid government received MILLIONS AND MILLIONS of letters of protest about Nelson Mandela’s unjust and horrific and tragic imprisonment. My dozens of letters were among them. And Nelson Mandela not only died a free man, he died as a former President of South Africa, a South Africa freed from the racist and genocidal Afrikkaner aparteid regime he went to prison for. I will forever and ever be so proud of that, even though my part in that was so very small. Because I could not stand by and do nothing after seeing what apartheid was. I may have been a Dirty Rotten Imbecile screaming scratchy punkrock lyrics at the system, but there would be no apartheid on MY watch.
And there still won’t be. Whatever you choose to call it. I have also changed the world by creating children, who are beautiful and amazing and strong: their own people with free wills so mighty and individual, yet so dynamic and powerfully unique and challenging. So this week, at least, I am going to take a topic that my Muppets helped me with this past week and dissect it scientifically and philosophically (in other words, with hard science and soft science), and show how I took my life from that Total Eclipse of the Heart and shone the sun back on it even though the arctic winds are blowing and the ground is covered in snow so crystalline cold it can’t even stick to itself.
In the meantime, I am going to give some food for thought. Right now I have to go do my Other Job, which is taking care of my household’s business. I have to get everything ready to file our taxes, which includes my fledgling business. And I have to teach my son how to do his taxes, which are a little more complicated than your average 22 year old because he has union dues and purchases and donated a truck that sold for more than the standard at auction. And there is a looming legal thing that I have to take care of RIGHT NOW but as a veteran married to a veteran who took care of a 100% service-connected disabled vet until he died we have to chase down veteran’s legal assistance but so far are shouting into the void. Oh, and debt…let’s not forget making hideous phone calls to take care of the crushing debt before the debtor’s prison that doesn’t exist comes for us. And discussing in various forums with my local people and politicians to make sure my voice is heard so things like the debtor’s prison that doesn’t exist finally gets erased once and for all. Because doing that is what gives me the courage to write this blog and the book behind it. If I don’t keep doing that, then those head monsters waiting in the recesses of my mind come out to play. Let’s not find ourself back in the closet with sharp objects again.
- The Gary Sinise Foundation helps veterans and first responders
- AND their families
- This is not affiliated with Gary’s politics
- The homes built for disabled vets are REALLY COOL SCIENCE
- I am going to write to them and hope they can help US
- Extremely relevant and profound study from Galveston, Texas
- Points to gun culture versus guns themselves
- Highlights the extreme need for CDC research and it’s current lack
- Can be dovetailed into other current studies easily
- JUST WHAT THE FUCK CAN YOU DISPUTE HERE?!?!
- Native male, maybe REALLY OLD!
- our state archaeologist is a SCIENCE BABE RAWR
- Colorado kicks ass in repatriation and reburials
- no housing corporation is going to get in the way of the dig or NAGPRA