Ice bags on our knees, bonding… Interesting times.

We have time on our hands, you know. (Sort of. Me, not so much.) Both of us recovering from knee surgery. So what do we do? We talk. I told my husband that as an author I should be wary of talking politics, religion or current events.

He said – “Who made that dumb-ass rule? Isn’t this still a free country?”

Um, well…

So this is the stuff we talk about while we are recuperating.

1.  Guess everyone’s gonna have to give up pronouns because they have been deemed sexist.

It’ll be– “Hey, how you doin’ there?” Or “Hiya bud.” Wait, does bud indicate a male? Or “Hey… you…”

And if you, as an employer, refer to someone as a ‘he’ or ‘she’ will you be forced to resign and face a public scourging? Stockades for all! (Notice, no pronoun. ‘All’ is very inclusive.)

I’m trying to figure out how I am supposed to write a book sans pronouns.

And by the way, I don’t hear anyone bitchin’ about the use of pronouns in Game of Thrones. Do you hear anyone bitchin’ about that? Seems like bitchin’ about pronouns is pretty dang selective these days…

2.  Speaking of slippery slopes… If I own a vegan restaurant and I refuse to prepare a hamburger for a customer, can he/she (sorry, used pronouns) sue me because by not providing said burger I am behaving in a burger-fascist/heterovegan manner? And I am creating an unsafe environment for the burger-eating population? Because burger-eaters will not feel comfortable, welcome and safe in my vegan restaurant? Because I am insensitive to the sensibilities of carnivores and omnivores? Or do carnivores and omnivores fall into the non PC category so therefore they have no rights? What if I own a rib-joint and fail to offer barbecued tofu? Huh? Huh? And what about Kosher caterers? What will happen if a client insists a Kosher caterer serve pork? Or cheeseburgers? Will the caterer be sued and forced out of business for creating an unsafe environment for the vast majority of people who do not keep Kosher yet have a need for catering services?

We are talking some pretty nuanced stuff, folks.

3. When I was a little tiny kid, my dad used to say- “Never trust a white man with a Southern accent.” He also passed on this jewel- “Never trust anyone who loudly proclaims he’s a good Christian.” But that was because my dad had grown up when we weren’t allowed to live in certain areas or eat in certain restaurants or drink out of certain drinking fountains or join certain organizations. He got over that years ago. But man oh man (Wait- that phrase is totally sexist! Merde! Self-slap administered. Remorse expressed. Please don’t ship me off to a re-education camp, please! Think of my children!) I am feeling so sorry for Christians. They are getting it from all sides when in fact the reason we have made such progress in our nation over the decades is because of the Christian notions of conscience, love and forgiveness, and the Judeo-Christian notion of justice, and our silly outdated Constitution which guarantees both religious freedom and freedom of speech. I’m a believer in science too, by the way, as in I don’t think you’ll much like it when your kids get polio because they aren’t vaccinated.

So I guess what I should be talking about is books. Here you go – I’m writing a story about a band of half-assed bloviated extremists. No shit. I am.

I’m hoping my children and, when I have them, grandchildren, don’t grow up in a country that is defined by intolerance. My parents’ generation and my generation worked too damn hard to win us some tolerance.

I think this sums up my thoughts nicely–

Tomorrow – My father tells me several stories.

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10 Responses to Ice bags on our knees, bonding… Interesting times.

  1. I love Sandra Bullock – she is so earnest in this. He’s not bad, either.

    I think you’re okay with your Vegan Restaurant, as long as you have a sign posted. It’s a private business, and you can choose which customers to serve. But you have a point.

    We’re working some of these things out as a nation: if government money requires a hospital to perform abortions when requested, then the Catholic hospital has the right and privilege of refusing government money – but the nation loses its many other services, and, face it, often Catholic hospitals were the only hospitals in the poor part of town – because the for-profit hospitals wouldn’t locate there.

    It is the same reason food is expensive in poor neighborhoods – because the big stores don’t want to locate there, with the ‘problems’ they’d have to deal with in their customers. The solution – make all neighborhoods safe for all our citizens – is too much work. So instead we castigate poor people for being fat and making bad food choices AND spending too much of their money on food. Yes, a white middle-class educated person might cope better, making nutritious crockpot soups for the family out of the limited foods available – but the person who never got that education and attitude is BAD for not having taken advantage of what was never an option for them.

    I’m procrastinating, so I will wish your knees well, block the internet, go take my nap – and get the next scene going. Which is what I should have done two hours ago.

    I hate ‘SHOULDS.’ I hate non-working brains more.

    Enjoy picking nits.

  2. Well I find a few things interesting, Alicia, as in this newsworthy item- one inner-city refused to allow a Trader Joe’s, which as you know offers fantastic healthy foods at ridiculous prices because the powers that be felt it would change the character of the neighborhood and perhaps attract a more upscale crowd. Trader Joe’s? Excuse me. So who suffers? The local residents. Studies have also been done on what people in low income areas purchase when healthy foods are offered. They tend to ‘not’ purchase the healthy foods. You’re right. It’s often a matter of education and habit. Takes time to change patterns. On a positive note, rates of obesity have decreased dramatically. Even poor people read and pay attention and they are changing their eating habits.
    The vegan restaurant? I’m not sure a posted sign is valid these days. At least not as far as certain groups are concerned. It could still be considered micro-discrimination. I am not in favor of discrimination. But I do think we must be wary of these attempts to micro-manage every single thing in our society. Some people, at least as far as I’m concerned, have too damn much time on their hands.
    And since I’ve never suffered from white guilt I don’t expect you to either. There’s no need. I assume ethnic minorities are perfectly capable of living their own lives and making their own decisions without guilty white people telling them/us what to do. Besides, like my dad always says – do the right thing for its own sake. It’s the right thing to do.
    Sorry- now I’m too wordy! You go back to your glorious writing! What a gift!

  3. Thanks – got another good working day today – it takes time to dig out all that stuff. The worry is that it is all in my subconscious – and I’m wondering how some of it got that way, but I think ‘writer’ is a much better profession than ‘torturer’ and it gets out some of the same impulses.

    I hope discrimination laws don’t change hugely – but obvious things like gender and ethnic background should not be usable by a business to discriminate. I don’t know if gay bars can discriminate against non-gay people (a bit hard to prove things, anyway, and the ‘wrong kind of people’ might feel they were in the wrong place and not be comfortable).

    Other than that, the protection of basic civil rights, I don’t think the government should be writing laws about what a business can sell – everyone will be welcome in your vegan restaurant if they behave themselves and buy what is being offered for sale on the menu, right? That’s good enough. I can’t go to the movies and demand a movie other than the ones they’re playing, or go to the dentist’s and demand a Pap smear.

    Anyway – hope your knees are feeling cool and getting better by the day – Jake needs exercise. I may be facing more spinal surgery – and am not looking forward to the recovery. It was literal hell last time. This growing older isn’t for sissies, and I’m not a sissy, but being in pain and/or on heavy drugs really messed last time with my writing – and I JUST got it going more reliably.

    Now off to finish taxes. Be well. And thanks for the nice words.

  4. anny cook says:

    I believe #2 is a brilliant illustration…wish it could be circulated everywhere! May you and the hubby heal quickly!

  5. I’m very much hoping you don’t need back surgery, Alicia. You have plenty of challenges. Good luck with you taxes! I guess what I’m saying is we must be careful about some issues. Things are not black and white. Institutionalized discrimination is never good. But your example of demanding a movie other than what is offered is exactly what I’m talking about — people who are oversensitive and unwilling to accept that they can’t always get what they want.

  6. Thanks, Anny. And thanks for commenting. I think everyone else is avoiding me like the plague that I am. ;)

  7. Amber Skyze says:

    Hahaha, you are not the plague and you have every right to your opinions. Hubby’s right – this country is about freedom of speech. Though sometimes I wonder if they’re trying to take it away from us.

  8. Thanks, Amber! Yes, I too am more than a little concerned that my freedoms may soon be abridged.

  9. anny cook says:

    Haven’t been avoiding you, for sure. HAVE been awfully busy this week with doc visits. You know how THAT can be…

  10. I know, Anny! Hope all is well.