I'm fine. Sort of.

So that happened. I would like to apologize on behalf of America to... everyone, really.

It's chaos in the US right now. Not in the physical Tahrir Square sort of sense, but in the sense that everyone, on all sides of everything, is angry right now. Anger is easier to admit to than fear, and everyone, no matter who they are, is really afraid that their very existence, the way they've lived and imagined living and hoped to live all their lives, is vanishing.

The people who envisioned that working hard in a blue-collar job for decades meant they could retire to a comfortable, if small, house to garden in the afternoon and bowl with the team on Thursday nights and visit with grandkids are coming to terms with the fact that that's not how the world works anymore, and they may never get the rest they were promised. The people who saw us racing towards a world where they could be a girl one day and a boy the next, and raise 2.5 children and a dopey Labrador retriever with their partner of indeterminate gender are coming to terms with the fact that progress is slow and grinding, and they may be considered aliens all their lives. The people who were hoping that Election Day would herald some sort of change -- in any direction -- are coming to terms with the fact that "who will our President be?" is not actually the fundamental thing everyone is fighting over, and that they can look forward to at least another four years of unceasing political screaming all over their Facebook feeds.

Logistically, in the immediate term, I am going to be fine. There is no overt trouble where I am. I live in civilization. Voting in my district was boring as fuck. The most suspenseful part of the process was when the lady in front of me needed a ballot in Vietnamese, and the poll worker had to spend twenty whole seconds flipping through a stack of not-English things to give her one. I voted a straight Democratic ticket, which was the only straight party ticket it would have been possible to vote here in Suffolk County -- about 75% of the offices up for election had (D) candidates running unopposed. One office had three Independent candidates listed. I would not be surprised if one or more of them used to be Republican, but hastily divorced themselves from the fucking crazy before poll time.

My healthcare is through the Commonwealth of Massachusetts -- enacted, for the record, by Mitt Romney, who is both a lifelong Republican and a devout Mormon -- and not through the federal government, so that's not going anywhere. When and if I present to the ER again to ask for an extremely large bottle of Xanax, I am pretty sure "2016 election" will be considered a valid medical indication for giving me one. We also apparently just legalized marijuana, for a whole host of obvious reasons.

[It was decriminalized here before, but the ballot question also legalized growing, possessing, and personal use for 21+, giving small amounts to other people 21+ without charge, applying a vice tax to commercial sales, and explicitly states that none of the above can per se be used against you in court actions like child custody hearings. You can still be prosecuted for running commercial operations without a license, for not paying taxes on it, for driving under the influence, for "public intoxication" if for some reason your red-eyed wasted self is wandering around the neighborhood pissing people off, etc. Basically, we've decided it's leafy booze.

I believe it goes into effect December 15th. One of my roommates is a DJ. I give good odds of a couple of wee baby pot plants quietly appearing on our kitchen windowsill before Christmas.]

Otherwise, I'm not so great. Not catatonic (yet), just not so great.

I haven't eaten anything. I have food, I just really can't. I'm coming down with something annoyingly nose-clogging on top of all of the rest of it, so I'm frankly weighing the merits of having the rest of the wine and some DayQuil for breakfast. Normally I'd consider this an unwise combination, but on the scale of Unwise Shit Going Down Right Now, it's starting to look pretty sane.

I also have to go out today, which means I will have to get on the train to Cambridge. I live in Dorchester, so the train is going to be full of black people. And if I pass out on the train, I will wake up to a lot of concerned black people looking down at me and asking me if I'm okay, because I'm in New England, and that's how Yankees roll: You vehemently ignore everyone else as long as they look fine, but if they look like they're in distress, you're an asshole if you don't stop and help.

What is probably going to happen to me personally is that I will be very quiet for a while, not sleep very well without the aid of drugs, and drop a shitton of weight. Getting a lot of exercise helps some, mainly because it gives me something to do, but the downside is that my appetite is unconnected to how many calories I'm burning. I expect to be re-tailoring a lot of my trousers. I ran through a lot of anxiolytic sedatives last night, and I'm probably going to keep doing it for a while, because the alternative is curling up into the fetal position and crying for days at a time.

I'm already getting hypersensitive to things like loud sudden noises. I cope with this mainly by trying not to hear them through the music I have jammed very firmly into my ear canals. Currently the playlist is dominated by Placebo, a band whose vocalist is openly bisexual, explicitly genderqueer, and probably jettisoned his American citizenship at age 17 in exchange for getting the UK to pay his drama school tuition; by Joan Jett, who is a throat-punchingly awesome feminist icon who plays extremely loud music, and is fuck-you-for-asking-but-likely-queer; by Janelle Monáe, who sings in a brilliantly feminine mezzo-soprano while dressing as James Brown and falling backwards into a crowd of screaming girls, and whose androids can stand in for any disenfranchised other; by Garbage, whose lead singer looks very girly but sounds belligerently Scottish, and like she wants you and your stupid emotionally-abusive sexist ideas to shut the fuck up; and by David Bowie, who is, and always will be, David Bowie.

I always kind of assumed I would be a weirdo alien to most people until the day I died, but I never figured I'd be actively subversive. Oh well. Nothing else in my life has gone even remotely to plan, so why not. I never could keep my mouth shut as a kid when it was just my personal emotional safety at stake. I don't see why I'd magically gain the ability to stuff a sock in it now.

It's not bravery or principles or moral fortitude. It's exhaustion. Somewhere around 9/11, it became apparent that, between real events and the unreal inability of the news media to be in any way reasonable about reporting on any of them, and my unfortunate mutant brain chemistry, I was going to spend the rest of my life acutely afraid of someone doing something awful somewhere. It takes a lot of energy to be in a state of mortal terror all the time. It also takes a lot of energy to ignore the symptoms, and talk yourself into not feeling things, and stay in your improv character as 'someone who is totally fine and functional no really', and otherwise generally reroute your entire life around that sense of impending doom. I can't fucking do both. If it gets me shouted at or fired or shot, so be it. I have friends who will tend my pets if the fascist revolution gets me.

The rats have slept through everything, with breaks for dinner and recreational testicle grooming, because they are rats. They were squabbling over who got to burrito (bur-rat-o?) himself up in the flannel cage cover to nap, so I threw a second blanket over top of that one, and they calmed down. They will probably be fed most of what I don't eat, so at least someone in the house will be happy.

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