samedi, mars 28, 2009

Looks good in black

As I've said here before, I generally hold off on telling men with whom I chat online (why does that sound increasingly revolting?) that I'm...well, know. One of the collared sisterhood.

But I don't like being evasive. So I'll tell them that as well as being a journalist, I have an alternative profession. Sometimes I'll teasingly add that I look good in black.

For some reason, they tend to go to the dominatrix option in the general menu. Why not mortician? Why not hostess at America Bar & Grill? Why not Goth college professor? Honestly, until I signed on to this dating site, I had no idea what a dominatrix was--or what a thriving market it seems to be. If you are looking for a job, it seems that there are a number of fellows who would like to hire you.

I'd consider the dominatrix role, but I have a couple of issues with it. One, I'm not a domineering personality. And two, I just don't have the right boots.

jeudi, mars 26, 2009

A sad day

"It was a privilege to have met him", said my ex. I can't believe John Hoope Franklin is gone, this shining star in American intellectual life. No, not solely in our intellectual life, but in our moral and spiritual life, too.

John Hope might have objected to the word spiritual. I don't think, from the brief chat the two of us had about the possibiliity of another life, that he even thought the question was that crucial. He thought this world was pretty good, he told me as he showed me and a friend his orchids.

But he WAS part of our American soul--buffeted by racism, sustaining its blows with not only dignity but bravery, and grace...

Yes. Grace.

My grief is mixed with thankfulness-that he lived, and he lived a long time, and that we got to learn from him.

I suspect that he would not only hope but expect those of us who truly believe in racial and ethnic equality to keep fighting for a world in which these wonderful words are incarnated (sorry John Hope) in the gritty reality of our daily lives. That's what he did.

Thank you for enriching this world with your intelligence, your expectations, your friendships and your grace. Godspeed.

mardi, mars 24, 2009

The power of positive

Something in me snapped when I read his email. He was dissing something valuable to me, and I spat right back at him. "I know what you are against," I wrote "but what are you for?" Realizing how rude that probably sounded, I wrote him again, asking what he was passionate about. What engaged him? What was the positive "frame"?

Strangely, I haven't heard back. Online, such questions can sound offensive. Online, a lot can be either misread or badly said.

I find that as we get older, we can get narrower in our sense of adventure, our outlooks, our willingness to tolerate or enjoy the "other" whatever the "other" is.

And, frankly, it scares me. I don't think it's something that naturally happens with age, but perhaps the psychic hurts and physical limits that accompany aging help exarcebate it.

I'm trying to fight this for all it's worth, because life is precious, and it's too short to be bitter a lot of the time. Until her last year, when many of her friends were gone, my grandmother embraced life. She was a safe harbor for her children, her grandchildren, and her friends. I want to be like that if I am graced with old age.

And I'm starting right now...trying to embrace beauty and light, and love, and hope...even in unlikely places.