Thursday, March 3, 2011

3:03 a.m., long and ridiculous and real

I will write raw.

Was so tired in the evening despite a nap (maybe because of the nap), despite decision not to drive to Columbus for open mic poetry or even to go to church. stayed home and tried to watch a movie.

Went to bed by 11. Knew I'd wake up now, middle of night, sound of pissed off engine roaring up street makes me feel lonely. Cat annoyed because I keep getting out of bed, which means he can't sleep on my legs.

Hot.

I cannot seem to write essays for grad school applications. So. When I wrote ages ago that I don't believe in writer's block, I was being arrogant.

I've got writer's block.

It's really stupid. I've just psyched myself into thinking nothing I write about me can entice a program to want me though I believe the work (poems) I will include in my portfolio would entice admissions committee members. It's the writing about self that trips me up. I feel like Smeagol, grad school is my "precious." "We wants it, we needs it. Must have the precious."

Ah. Well.

Shift.

Ohio Senate Bill 5. We are in so much trouble. I watch the Ohio Republican senators shove this bill through, call senator, Jimmy Stewart, and leave a message expressing my concern, ask for a call back, express to the woman who answers the phone my (polite) opposition to the bill.

I am biased. My husband is a public employee (though his campus does not have a union). My best local friend is a teacher/public school librarian. That friend and that friend and that friend work in the public sector - teachers, nurses, policemen. The teachers I know are all good people who work their asses off, use their own money for professional development (in other words, when they aren't teaching in the summer, they are often working toward master's degrees or other continuing education programs that help them to improve their teaching. They are not sitting around pools sipping mint juleps).

Sen. Stewart did not return my phone call though I know he returned a friend's phone call. Friend is as liberal as I am. Is a man. Does this make a difference? Another male friend also said he's had good luck getting personal responses to calls and letters from the politicians who represent us (only Zack Space has ever replied to me personally). I wrote Sen. Stewart a passionate but civil letter, sent it through email, received back a form letter from staff with his signature attached as a scan. It was obvious that the person who responded to me hadn't read my letter. They could have been writing to someone who believed in union busting or someone (like me) who believes in the good of collective bargaining or someone who was asking a question about how Sen. Stewart feels about picket fences.

I believe contacting my representatives is part of my right as a citizen of Ohio, of the United States. I believe that my representatives should know how I feel or you feel or my neighbor feels about important issues. If I stop attempting to connect, I give them even more power over my world than they already have. I can't assume they know what I want. How can they know if I don't tell them?

But how can they know if they don't listen? What good are my words when they don't actually read them? And I know, I know they're busy, and I'm one small woman who doesn't really matter. I wonder, too, if the senators have actually read SB 5. I have. This stuff is a tough read, plot as mixed up as a James Joyce novel. I think I lost some eyelashes trying to decipher it all, and I'm not stupid.

I sit in my desk chair, rocking. It's dark except for the light from my laptop screen. I'm finally cooling off. Bare feet, no bathrobe, just pajamas (that are really a pair of sweats and a long-sleeved T-shirt. Sometimes it's easier to go to bed in whatever I'm wearing when I get sleepy).

I want to pay attention to what's happening in my state house. I want to understand why it feels like Them against Us, what I'm missing when I try to understand the "other side."

Sometimes I think celebrities like Charlie Sheen are part of a conspiracy to distract us from things that really matter. Maybe that seems like a non sequitur, but it's not. Because of the way news is presented on the Internet, the likes of Charlie Sheen "trend" as high as stories about Wisconsin and Ohio, as high as Egypt and Libya. "Ooh! Look! Shiiiiiny!" And off we go watching video of a babbling, spoiled actor who has nothing to do with the quality of our lives (well, I suppose if you watch his show, he might matter to you, but I can't even remember what it's called right now).

I'm babbling. It's 3:23 a.m. I think my toes are cold enough for me to crawl back under the covers.

Daughter returns from her dad's tomorrow. The weekend will be full of teenage girls, I suspect. Maybe. I hope I'm not too exhausted to manage it all.

Must
finish
application essays.

What the hell is wrong with me?

That's a rhetorical question. Or one only I can answer.

1 comment:

  1. Of course you matter. And at least you try. So many people don't.

    ReplyDelete