I know I’m all about systemic problems lately, but I had a meeting this afternoon in which I had a conversation that just blew my mind. I guess I don’t feel like going into detail about it except to say that it’s time, probably past time, for female Democrats to ask, at every level, “Where are the women?” And, yes, it will make us giant bitches and it will make people uncomfortable and yes, we’re going to have to hear that women just aren’t interested or aren’t suited or aren’t whatever.

And we’re still going to have to ask “where are the women?” anyway.

We have to start making the absence of women running for office and being in leadership positions uncomfortable and embarrassing.

The Theory of Nice Day Relativity

I have noticed that I can walk much farther with the dog in the same amount of time on morning that are glorious, but somehow cannot get to work in a timely manner on those same days. I can’t help but putz in! You know people in Nashville are all the time complaining about Nashville drivers? Well, I swear, if you hear someone saying “And on nice days, some fools are always driving 30 miles an hour everywhere!” that’s me! Not complaining. Driving 30.

I swear, by the time I’m an old-lady driver, I will be driving backwards on days like today.

Here’s a thing I wrote for Pith. The discussion in the comments has focused on “parents today!” which I guess is a nice change from “kids today!” but still, what I’m talking about is something systemic. Yes, if parents can even get a glimpse of the enormous social forces aligned against them, then, yes, they damn well should do what they can to counteract them, to give their kids a fighting chance against those forces. But it’s like the sky, these issues, and I’m not sure we see it, really see it, very often, even though it’s always within sight.

I am worried that 10%-15% of our population is expendable and I am afraid that my brothers and my nephews and some of my cousins might be counted among the people who can be left behind. It fucking terrifies me.

I don’t know. This is such a nice day and here I sit mulling over depressing shit.

Blah. Don’t mind me.

Oh, The Places We Are At

If I were a better blogger, I would have put this picture in my last post. If I were a recreational drug user, I would lie among the columbine, trying their blossoms on as wizard hats while singing really corny Led Zeppelin songs to myself.

Heck, just looking at this flower I’m all “Away with her-er, away with her-er”.

So, sadly, my reading at the JCC got moved from tomorrow to some time in June. I was all “No, I swear, I am interesting. I don’t know why no one wants to come see me.” I’m a little bummed, but in June, it sounds like there will be lunch. And I’m all for lunch.

As for the current project, I’m kind of sick to my stomach about it in a good way. Don’t get me wrong. I still have moments of panic where I’m convinced everyone secretly hates it or that it’s not filled with enough action or that people are going to be like “Oh my god, fuck you, B., for never explaining why she’s turning into a flock of birds! I will hunt you down and uproot all your columbine!”

But I’m feeling like it’s pretty close to done. It’s about 10,000 words longer than when I had people reading drafts. I think I do a better job of making it clear why she’s not really freaked out about turning into a flock of birds and why she doesn’t get to know why she’s turning into a flock of birds. I’ve made it clearer why she would agree to go pick up the Devil’s baby and what happens at the moment she decides that he is not merely some dude who believes he’s the Devil, but is indeed actually the Devil. I let him talk a little more. He tells her the Papa Limba story, trying, I think, to get her to rethink how she thinks about divinity. And he tells her a story about an abused woman whose kids he kills, both so that it’s obvious that he really is truly dangerous and it’s clearer why she’d still be like “Oh, hello, Devil, I’m a willing dumbass for you.” I moved some of the stuff from the denouement up into the main body of the book so that the resolution focuses more directly on the trip to Illinois. And the pooping.

I’m still trying to decide about chapters. I had six. I felt like those were a little too long. Now I have twelve. But I’m kind of thinking I might want to combine a couple. And I need to go through and decide when and if “conference” is capitalized. Maybe lowercase for the organizational entity and uppercase for the annual gathering?

And I’m waiting to hear back from K. If she doesn’t like it, ugh, I don’t know. I will go live among the columbine then.

It’s funny. We were watching last week’s Criminal Minds and the killer was my age and had a kid named Damien. I was like “No.” And the Butcher was like “People my age have kids named ‘Damien’.” And I said, “Yeah, I think that six years is crucial.” I just could not believe someone my age who was supposed to be some straight-laced suburban mom with a good normal marriage, you know, TV ordinary, my age would have a kid named ‘Damien.’ Oh hell yes, I think now it’s a fine name and there’s a kind of jokey affiliation to The Omen, but…

I don’t know. I was just reminded of that typing “columbine” over and over again and meaning it as something out in the garden. It’s weird. That was this month, right? Yep, April 20th. We often go someplace no good in April, don’t we?

Anyway, it’s weird. I guess it’s not. It just strikes me as weird.

Anyway, anyway, the point was going to be that, I’m probably not that far from starting to shop the novel. And that does, indeed, make me want to throw up. But I’m kind of becoming a person who finds it less painful to do the things she wants to do that scare her than it is to be the kind of person who just wants to do things, but never does.

I know! What the fuck, right?