Pot Calls Kettle Black; Kettle Retaliates

I had to add a category called "The Conservative Soap Opera" just to reflect the fact that it’s getting ugly over there on the Right side of the Blogosphere.

When last we chatted, right before I had lunch with the fabulous and witty CeeElCee, Roger Abramson was too smart for his own good.  Now, Smantix*, a right-wing blogger just about as pleasant as a jagged metal Krusty-o, has accused Kleinheider of being "this crypto-nazi."

Kleinheider has responded thusly, "Smantix, I’m not crypto-anything — not politically anyway. If I were an admirer of National Socialism, I would tell you." 

If this were a real soap opera, of course, we’d learn that Smantix was carrying the baby of Kleinheider’s father, thus making Smantix’s potential son Kleinheider’s half brother and the rival heir to the Kleinheider family fortune.  But maybe that comes next!



*Some of you may remember Amanda (whom I would link to if she had a blog) accosting Smantix and, I believe, offering to punch him in the nose at the last blogger get together. 

It’s Like a Soap Opera

It turns out that Roger Abramson may not be a conservative, but may instead be one of those snooty "elitists" we keep hearing so much about.  Yes, folks, the accusations flying against Abramson at the moment can be boiled down to one thing:  The fact that Abramson is so smart makes his conservative credentials suspect.

Let’s just let that wash over us, slowly like corn syrup drizzling across our cool skin.

Ah, yes.

Conservatives are up in arms about Abramson writing too much and, thus, appearing elitist and snooty.  Lest we forget, these are also the same people who were pissed at Sarcastro for such treacherous behavior as wanting things spelled correctly.

Apparently, there’s an informal movement afoot to purge the right wing of people who can read and write.

I laugh.

Not very hard, though, because we’ve seen the Democratic party over and over again try to pander to the core of the right-wing, so I’m sure that, just as we now have to suffer through "we can reach a compromise on abortion as long as you women just shut the fuck up and let us men talk" and "we have to stop alienating religious people so you liberal church goers who are offended by our pandering to the fundamentalists need to shut the fuck up" and other forms of "let us go after the right’s special interest groups while we mock our core constituencies for being loud special interest groups" nonsense, I’m sure the second someone points out the conservative movement away from basic literacy, the Democrats will jump right in to try to woo the folks on the right by claiming that, though a lot of Democratic candidates went to college, they didn’t actually learn anything while they were there.

A History of Pagan Europe

I also read most of A History of Pagan Europe.  I skipped the Celts. I know, for shame.  But the Greek and Roman part just went on so long and then I really wanted to skip ahead to the Germanic stuff and so I did and I just haven’t gotten back to the Celts, who, I’m sure, are wonderful people.

Anyway, here’s everything you need to know about pagan Europe, if you are not interested in either paganism or Europe:

1.  Paganism is fluid and constantly changing.  One century one way of worship was in vogue and fifty or a hundred years later another set of gods with other ways of worship become central.  I think I tend to view “the Greeks” or “the Romans” as monolithic people with set beliefs in certain gods.  It’s messier than that.

2.  There is no long, unbroken line of pagan beliefs running from here back into history, where I believe what my parents believed, who believed what their parents believed, on and on back, toasting good health to Old One-Eye for 1400 years.

However, neither has Christianity been able to completely eradicate pagan beliefs from Europe and so every place you look throughout European history, someone is practicing some form of paganism.

Other than those two things, everything else in the book is thought-provoking, but I don’t know.  It’s one of those books I don’t think you can take at face value, but that inspires you to want to search out primary sources in order to see if you agree with the conclusions they’re drawing.

Act Like a GRRRL! Night One

I did a little bit of everything tonight.  I handed out programs.  I worked the sound.  I stood there afterwards with a box and tried to guilt people into donations.  But basically, I just sat up in the booth in a little bit of awe.

It’s hard to describe it if you haven’t seen it.  The girls are both incredibly awkward and young looking and so mature and graceful and gutsy.  They do this bellydance that is so amazing you just can’t help but roll your hips along with them.  And then they do this African dance with drums and more hip shaking and just kind of controlled abandon.

I want to be the kind of feminist those girls deserve as a role model, someone who is smart and funny and self-assured and at peace with herself and unafraid to live in the world.  I want to know, really know bone deep, that y’all are lucky to have me.

In other words, I’d like to take more of the brazen hussy you find here and move that part of me into my real life.

It’s weird.  Can we digress for a little bit?  When I started Tiny Cat Pants, this was clearly something private, a space to kind of work out who I wished I was and to practice being it.  But there’s a lot of ways in which this has become my public face, the way that many folks first come to know me and the way that even people who knew me before keep up with me now.  So, I think I’m still kind of uncertain and graceless in real life; it’s just no longer the first impression people have of me.

That makes a big difference in how I perceive myself.  I feel braver and more together.

Still, when I watch those girls on that stage… I worry that they see me and think, “Wow, I can be like her.”  I want them to look at me and see me as a sign post to a way of being far better than anything I have worked out for myself.

It’s complicated.  On the one hand, I know we can’t wait around for perfect people to do things.  There’s only us messy fucked up complicated prone to failure folks to do anything.  We’re all there is to do things.  Still, how can we teach these girls lessons we don’t know how to learn?

I know the Professor always says that we teach best what we most need to learn.  On the one hand, I hope that’s true.  On the other hand, I came away from tonight feeling slightly disingenuous.

I hope they get that we don’t know what we’re doing.  I hope they have not put their faith in us, but in themselves.  Because we don’t know what we’re doing, really.  I don’t think.

I don’t, anyway.

Anyway, my heart is full and it’s broken a little.  I don’t know if I really know what I want to say.  The girls were marvelous.  I’m struggling to be.