Friday, May 15, 2020

Terrible America

I should probably change that sign to "I bake and I know no things," because lately I'm just feeling mostly that I know very little if nothing at all. For instance, why is the rest of the country (other than New York City and greater Los Angeles county) getting back to what they deem normal? Who were those people in those bars in Wisconsin, for example, that bunch of burly white bearded men getting beer on tap, piled up in booths with blondes? And who are the people driving across the country to their beach houses? Who is my son, actually, getting ready to fly to the east coast to spend the summer in South Carolina where life is back to whatever normal is in South Carolina? We are still wiping down our groceries before bringing them into the house, rotating through the masks that lie, now, everywhere, making sure that we wash them before putting them on again to step into the dystopian world outside. We're looking at a fall with school still virtual, with even colleges and universities heading toward 2021 that way, even as other states are opening up their gyms and planning for football. Black men, women and children are gunned down doing normal things while being black even as men with submachine guns strapped to their bodies (and their adoring women because let's not leave out the women) protest for their freedoms in public places. Their idle white faces.

I'm confused, so confused.

Children are beginning to die in New York and New Jersey from a rare neurological/immunological disease related to Covid-19, but there are legions more protesting against their tyrannical government, peddling conspiracy theories and refusing to wear masks in the name of freedom. We've got Dear Leader spinning spinning spinning his lies and venom, health insurance companies diving back into states that they'd pulled out of one year ago, piling up record profits to reward their shareholders and executives, while the disability community faces the spectre of cuts in services, the usual sacrificial lambs at the altar of mammon.

We are divided, disunited.

We were encouraged to go outside and look up into the skies today as military jets flew through in a show of aerial support for healthcare nurses. Thunderbirds. Blue Angels. Who are the people that thrill to this kind of thing? I do not understand them, but I know nothing. I am confused. I put on my mask and go for a walk, my lips tight underneath, my glasses steaming up. Don't touch your face.

America is exhausting and terrible.


  1. I don't know anything. Except that I am in a state of despair and anxiety. Pretty sure about that.

  2. I don't know either. We are still required to Stay At Home here in Philadelphia, and we just canceled my daughter's June wedding (and she's in tears about it but can't imaging flying from Colorado to Maine and is worried about making her grandfather sick) But meanwhile I see photos of defiant barbers and people packing bars in various cities.

    Nothing makes any sense. My solace right now is my garden and my knitting.

  3. It's like the whole world has taken stupid pills. I don't know anything either. Perhaps denial is more comforting than the truth? Definitely, more comforting.

    Sending hugs. Stay safe my friend.

  4. I have whiplash from it all. I think that's their objective, to keep us too off balance to respond effectively. we are living inside the very definition of dystopian. in fact, dystopian doesn't go far enough. i think we need a new word. maybe i mean world.

  5. We are still quarantined here except the parks are open and people only came to the parks on the first day except for the fisherman going out in their boats because the salmon are running. No barbers or restaurants or people gathering in the streets to protest either even though there are his supporters here I guess they’re not ready to die. I really don’t understand the people gathering in the streets to scream their nasty spittle at each other with their small children running with them. It’s the same people I suppose who believe the earth is flat and that science is made up by atheists.

  6. I am just so tired by all of it. All of these gun-toting, white-faced, american flag waving assholes who believe they are SO TOUGH and righteous and who hoard their guns--all they care about is going back to normal where they are not confronted with their humanity. I read an article that talked about the rise of "vice signaling" on the right--the proud boasting of their cruelty. My ex's wife who wrote in an email "I am an emergency room and I ihaven't contracted Wuhan Virus yet, this is all hysteria." It's only important if, when, it hurts them. And then their friends will turn on them because vice signaling and such cruelty has no room for care. I don't know. There is so much ugly magical thinking.

  7. Thank you Elizabeth for your beautiful post. My sentiments exactly. I see more people on the street mask-less than masked and I wonder about their grandparents and other relatives and children and strangers. As I see it, there are two groups-those that are the rugged individualists who will just as soon shoot you as cough in your face. And they're afraid, very afraid so their bravado is tragically misplaced. Then there's the rest of us who actually se ourselves as interdependent. We are caring for our neighbors and all those we will never see. We are actually caring for ourselves. The virus is knocking at everyone's door. I guess I feel pity but they are dangerous in their delusion. Dangerous.

  8. The Radicalization of America is truly frightening and getting worse, as a Pandemic rages we're pretending in about 48 States now that things can EVEN get back to "normal"!!! Here in our State {a Red one, ugh!} they informed us our Children will return to School the 1st Week of August while our Infection Rate and Death Toll have a steep upwards trajectory that is way worse than it was when they Closed the Schools and everything else down! We Opened back Up and Adults behaving badly is now the Norm... like those clips you saw on TV in Bars and Restaurants. It makes me fearful to go anywhere even for essentials since the Medical Fragility of our Family means we could be sacrificial Lambs and our crappy Health Insurance never covered so much BEFORE Pandemic so I can only imagine if we had catastrophic costs to recover {or Die} from the Disease, what debt load that would burden the Survivors with?! It's just surreal.

  9. As Leonard Cohen said, “Look, I don't understand a fucking thing at all – Hallelujah!”

    I, too, am confused and exhausted and disgusted by so many people. This virus is exposing some of the worst things about our country -- the rate at which black and brown people are dying (and/or be coming infected) far out numbers their percent of the population as a whole. THAT should be a wake up call. But I fear it won't be.

    "What nature doesn't do to us, will be done by our fellow man!"

  10. I cannot understand all of this magical thinking that is causing people to say the words when Covid comes back in the Fall. We will have 100,000 people dead very soon from it. This virus isn't going anywhere this summer. It doesn't have to come back, it's not leaving. By Fall when the kids go back to school, the virus will spike to horrible numbers, and other viruses will pile on top. It will be very dangerous to even go to vote. And as far as mail-in ballots, who knows what will be happening with the US Postal Service by November with a Trump crony heading it. Oh, woe is we (or is it us?)



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