Andrew Jackson

I’m writing something for the Scene on Andrew Jackson and so I’ve been trying to think some thoughts about him so that my piece isn’t just like “I shouldn’t cheer for a man who would shoot someone over a fat woman, but I do.” And I do come back to the fact that I have grown to appreciate more and more that Jackson does not pretend to be less monstrous or pretend to live in a United States less monstrous than the one I recognize living in. I mean, let’s just take his treatment of Native Americans. Has there been another U.S. president as blatantly genocidal as Jackson?

But here’s what I appreciate: Jackson looked at the vision he had of the U.S. (and what he believed voters wanted of him) and looked at the Southeast, and he knew that the only way those two things were going to be reconciled was by doing whatever it took to remove the people whose land it was. And so he did. He didn’t pretend that there was going to be some way for the U.S. and native peoples to live together in intermingled nations. He was just the monster necessary to achieve our disgusting goals.

I think we’re uncomfortable with Jackson as a nation because we’re used to our politicians pretending to us that our goals are noble and the ends we use to reach them measured and justified. And Jackson just didn’t do that shit. We often elect presidents aspirationally–they represent what we want America to be. Not Jackson. He wasn’t a symbol. He was a reflection.

And we still don’t like what we see when we look at him.

Well, Since Yesterday Was Wednesday

It makes logical sense that today is only Thursday. Still, I woke up thinking that it must be Friday. In fact, I know I spent much of yesterday afternoon thinking it was Thursday afternoon. So, on the one hand, I’m not behind on work things, since I got everything that needed to be done by Friday morning done yesterday. On the other hand, somehow, this has been the longest week ever.

But, since, somehow, this week had all this time added into it, I am almost done with the red afghan. I just have to tuck the ends. And take a picture of the front and back so you can see how it turned out. I love it. And the best part is that the Red-headed Kid showed me a picture of his room and it matches! Some day I’ll get tired of making afghans like this, but it’s not today.

I also received a really nice compliment on a short story of mine. Which does me good, because it hasn’t sold yet, so I was starting to worry.

And I got felt out about doing a book thing in Memphis, so that’s exciting.

And, and, when I took the dog out to pee last night, I didn’t bother to put him on a leash, because fuck it and he went out and peed and then came right back to me standing there in the driveway and I was all “Who’s a good boy?” and he said, “A good boy? Where? I love meeting new people.” and all the coyotes sang around us and it was glorious.

Here’s what you need to know to understand how things are working with Sonnyboy and us. If Sonnyboy were a person, he’d call me “Miss Betsy” and the Butcher “bro” or “dude.”

Here’s another thing. If 2013 was just what it took to get ready for the big changes of 2014, I will be more at peace with 2013. I will not forgive it for sending the Professor too far away from me to have emergency lunches when I need to vent and process, but I can overlook a lot of the rest of the nonsense. As long as the changes of 2014 are good, I guess I should say.