I forgot to tell ya'll about the wishing tree. I bought that craft kit years ago and stashed it somewhere that I forgot about every year. I'm not a crafty person but have the impulse to be one. I remembered it this year, though, and set it up. Basically, it's a tree with a bunch of branches that you decorate with paper bluebirds of happiness and pink flowers. There's a little box that sits beside it filled with strips of pretty paper. Guests take a slip of paper, write a wish for the birthday girl on it, fold the paper and hang it from the tree. Sophie got the nicest wishes -- no more seizures, sweet dreams, twenty more years, a happy life, etc. -- and that tree looks so cute that I might keep it up all through the spring. Pretty soon my house is going to resemble a tschotchke shop. I can't stop buying candles, especially if they're decorated on the outside and smell like Tabac/Myrrh, and do you know about these fabrics called Kanthas? I have them draped over dirty furniture, my ugly old upholstered headboard and a funky chair that I bought at a yard sale for $5 in Nashville, Tennessee over twenty-five years ago. If I close my eyes, though, I imagine myself in a sort of Vanessa Bell/Virginia Woolf Bloomsbury aesthetic.
Of course, they were real artists, literally painted their own furniture and wouldn't have been caught dead (with stones in their pockets) assembling a cardboard wishing tree, but a woman can aspire to a certain joie de vivre in a cluttered interior.
On another note, I read today that Senators Rand Paul, Cory Booker and Kirsten Gillibrand, a Republican and two Democrats, respectively, are introducing a bill that would end the federal ban on marijuana and institute a series of reforms which include downgrading its status from Schedule 1 to Schedule 2. This is a positive step for any number of reasons, but I felt a prick of annoyance at the language used in the article. The bill will be unveiled, it's a significant step, a first for the Senate, yadda yadda yadda. The operative word is introduced, and the good Lord only knows how long that introduction will go on, given some of the minds of our elected officials and, let's face it, the dodo birds they represent. Dodo birds will take oxycontin for their back pain or give their kids antidepressants and anti-psychotics and all manner of ADHD drugs, but what's going to happen to the moral fabric of this country if people start smoking pot all the time? Don't get me wrong. I'm glad the Powers That Be are getting off their asses and bringing this to the floor tomorrow morning, but I feel irked, too. I responded on Facebook with this comment:
I guess things are moving forward, albeit slowly. Maybe baby steps are good, but there's something always a bit discomfiting when the "powers that be" come together to "approve" of something that "the people" have been wailing about for decades. It bugs me, to tell you the truth. Just do it.Maybe I'm just an old, jaded. burnt-out reactionary secret anarchist-cum-socialist curmudgeon who smells the stink of patronisation and paternalism. It reminds me, a bit, of the times the Pope comes out with an encyclical advocating some kind of moral order or decides that the faithful need to go easy on the gays. It's rare for someone in power to attribute some action on their part to the people who have actually made things happen, much less to say mea culpa or, in the case of this marijuana prohibition, the collusion of big business and conservative social policy has decimated the lives of tens of thousands of people who might have benefited from medical marijuana during the last seventy-five years, so let's get this thing done and do it now. And while we're at it, let's denounce William Randolph Hearst, Mr. DuPont and Andrew Mellon who conspired to remove access to this beneficial plant so that they could continue to reap enormous and obscene profits from timber, chemicals and oil and make what once was a medicine to ease pain, cure disease, stop seizures and fight inflammation and bacteria an evil substance provoking rape, immoral acts and thoughts and even murder (that's the history of marijuana, but we're supposed to revere these titans of business and capitalism and philanthropy).
I'm probably better off squirreling around my ever-growing agglomeration of wishing trees, books, Kantha fabrics and tobacco candles and doling out the cannabis oil than kneeling in some sort of obsequious gratitude to a bunch of senators in a Georgian building across the country.