Friday, February 22, 2013

Friday's Random Thoughts - Hellbound Edition

Happy birthday, Edward Gorey
Somebody Needs Killin'

Yesterday I read that Bill O'Reilly has a deal for yet another book in his "killing history and literature" series. This time he's going to write a book titled Killing Jesus. This will follow his inexplicably successful books Killing Lincoln and Killing Kennedy.

I would like to volunteer to write Killing Bill O'Reilly. I seriously have never seen a face more smug and asking to be punched. Ever.

I think it's a good time to watch this:

America, you get the books you deserve.

Somebody Needs a Break

In other book news, I sent out my last book proposal this week. Maybe not forever, but definitely for the immediate future. Maybe for this entire year.

I've been thinking a lot about the idea of giving up versus the idea of moving on. When I printed out the proposal and put it into its black folder, I felt relieved. I think it's a good book and I think it's worthwhile, but I'm pretty sick of my need for validation. I keep thinking, "Yes, a very bad thing happened, but I am so much more than this very bad thing."

And I don't need to be validated, dammit.

The purpose of the book, for me, was to tell a story that has not been told because I was unable to find the book I needed, the one by a person who witnessed a suicide and lived to tell the tale. The purpose was to illustrate that you can witness something horrific, you can lose someone important in a second of violence, you can blame yourself and him and cry in the dark, and then you can figure out how to love yourself and him and you can keep seeking the light. You can survive. Not just survive. You can thrive.

Even on the most difficult days you can play some Luda and cuss in the car, or you can watch George Clooney movies and imagine just how much he'd laugh at all your jokes, or you can take a road trip with your amazing children and sing Mr. Blue Sky really loudly in the car because that's your tiny family's theme song.

That was the point. And the thing is I'm ready to live that point more fully. I'm ready to slide this story onto a shelf and maybe have a new story.

It's OK for me to say, "Enough."

The Stupid, It Burns

In other news, someone in Alabama said something stupid. Again. This week it was Alabama GOP lawmaker Mary Sue McClurkin, whose grasp of science is like my grasp on math: Nonexistent and worthy of tears. McClurkin is pushing legislation that would place restrictions on abortion clinics. In her argument, she said that when a doctor performs an abortion he or she removes the "largest organ in a body...You don't have any other organs in your body that are bigger than that."

What in the fuckety fuck is this woman talking about?

(Your skin is actually the body's largest organ, but whatever. Why bother yourself with facts?)

I find it rather delightful that Mary Sue's little argument actually undermines the "personhood" bull shit that GOP lawmakers keep trying to push on us. Organs are removed from the body every day and nobody is shrieking about their eternal souls. For instance, right now, my gall bladder is likely burning in hell next to Hitler's spleen. Poor gall bladder.

I have an idea that would make this whole thing much easier. How about people mind their own damn business? How about if you don't agree with abortion then YOU don't have one? (The funny thing that is not actually funny is that many people who claim to be against them have abortions because "the only moral abortion is my abortion." )

I have this thing about people who are concerned with the immortal souls of other people: Calm the fuck down. If the heaven you believe in is so great, then you won't care that your atheist son or your agnostic daughter or your Jewish best friend isn't there. If you do care and it tears you up inside your angel costume, then it's not all that heavenly, is it?

See You in Hell

Recently a woman wrote an essay on about how she is raising her children without religion. It got some attention and people commented that this woman was the reason this country is going to hell.

The only thing unusual about this person is that she wrote an essay on the Internet. There are PLENTY of people raising their children without religion. I am one of them.

Sometimes I wonder if people actually believe I'm a bad person for doing so. I tell my children, when it comes up, that they are certainly free to do and believe what they want. If they'd like to go to church, they can. I will help them make that happen. If they want to pray, they can. If they want to question the world and its many and varied belief systems, do it, I say. We make jokes about the Flying Spaghetti Monster and His Noodly Appendage. We discuss the universe and its incomprehensible breadth. I do not tell them what to believe. I do not intentionally lie to them about what I believe or don't believe. I do not pretend that I know the answers to questions when I don't.

When each of them in turn, around 5 or 6 years old, asked me if Santa Claus was real, I said, "What do you think?" Because I am raising them to think. And each of them said, "I" And I said, "But it's fun to pretend, isn't it?"

I am not raising children. I am raising adults. There is a vast difference.

The three of us are good people, with or without a religion that you deem to be valid or invalid based on your own upbringing. I don't choose to love people or forgive them or offer them kindness because some book tells me to or so I can get my heavenly reward. I do it because it feels better than being a hateful jerk. I do it because this world is a better place with love and forgiveness and kindness.

No day goes by without my children telling me at least once that they love me. Not a day passes when they don't demonstrate their capacity for compassion and kindness.

When my children and I need comfort about the loss of someone we loved, I don't tell them, "You'll see him again one day" and I don't give them some story about "mysterious ways" because that does not comfort someone here and now. (And there is nothing mysterious about why an addict dies. It's not a mystery. The reason things happen resides in the past and a lot of us would do well to look at our pasts and try to learn from them.)

I tell them, "You have so many wonderful memories. Hey, remember that time your dad let you stay home from school for no reason? Remember that time dad did a dance to Ice Ice Baby in front of your friends?" I say, when the moment is right, "You did that just like your dad. You are so good at math, just like your dad. Your eyes are just like your dad's."

Because they are here and they are now and that is what matters to me.

Because the love you feel for someone is always with you and you can feel it whenever you want. That is what matters.

If someone thinks I am the reason this country is going to hell, so be it. But since I don't believe in hell, it seems like a whole lot of fuss over nothing.

A Date with My Pretend Boyfriend

The Academy Awards are Sunday and I am super excited about it because my social life is pathetic. I like to see who gives the best speech, who creates the most secondhand embarrassment, and how many women wear dresses that make me think about their boobs.

Awards shows are all about making people think about boobs.

Are her boobs going to stay in that dress? 
Is her boob about to pop out? 
Why won't this boob wrap up his boring speech and move along? 

My pretend boyfriend George will be there in all his tuxedo-ed glory since he is one of the producers of Argo, so I'll end today's post with some photos of George doing awards shows right.

Happy Friday, my friends.

She's lovely, but there's just something not right about this.

There. That's better.


  1. Fridays are already great, then I have your posts to look forward to as a bonus! There's too much to comment on, but let's just say I love all your thoughts today as always. Did you ever watch the show 30 Days with Morgan Spurlock? He had an episode where a Christian family had an atheist stay with them for 30 days, and it is so good. Thanks for your insights as always; I'm looking forward to the Oscars too!!

    1. Thank you! I always appreciate you reading and your comments. And I'm so glad we got to hang out last weekend!

  2. Mmmm. What a delicious photo from that one time we went to Fantasyland Oscars. Now please pass me a meatball sub.

    1. That picture is hanging on my fridge and every time I see it I get hungry!

  3. Have ever thought about Kickstarter to fund your book?

  4. Did I ever tell you about my kid's experience at a private daycare this summer? The teacher mentioned (with furrowed brow) that Elliott "doesn't seem to understand how to pray at you do that at home?" Lots of wacky ensued when we explained that while we don't believe in prayer, we want him to be quiet and respectful of others during prayer time. Anyhoo. When I casually mentioned lunchtime to Elliott later, he said they sing a song right before. I asked about the lyrics, and he said he didn't know the words but at the end they yell "Awww MAN!" And he did it exactly the way Swiper from Dora the Explorer says that, complete with arm motion. It was awesome. Guess the Smith family will see you all in hell.


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