Monday, February 15, 2021

Lunar New Year, Pandemic Times

 












Joe and the teenager after visiting the sharing corner. 









Happy valentine's mom!!!!


I spent the week, thinking of the little one downstairs, still home from school after nearly a year.

And her friend who just went to the psych ward.

Now she’s reading Camus,

Thinking about our choices.

The last line of the Stranger:

“As if that blind rage had washed me clean, rid me of hope; for the first time, in that night alive with signs and stars, I opened myself to the gentle indifference of the world. Finding it so much like myself—so like a brother, really—I felt that I had been happy and that I was happy again. For everything to be consummated, for me to feel less alone, I had only to wish that there be a large crowd of spectators the day of my execution and that they greet me with cries of hate.”

We talk about the Stranger as we walk through the neighborhood.

Our lives are about our choices.

NO school on Thursdays, making due as best she can, painting and reading, as things settle in.

The senior teenager presents on Brave New World, her senior project on zoom, utopia vs dystopia the topic.

Seems familiar this eternal topic.

Sometimes their friends show up.

Sometimes they don’t.

We see each other every day.

All of our communities expanding and contracting.

I’m upstairs writing and thinking and teaching and listening to old sons

Norah Jones sings:

I waited 'til I saw the sun
I don't know why I didn't come
I left you by the house of fun
Don't know why I didn't come

When I saw the break of day
I wished that I could fly away
Instead of kneeling in the sand
Catching tear-drops in my hand

My heart is drenched in wine
But you'll be on my mind forever”

The Times reports people are cracking, after almost a year of this.

And the kids get to endure the grownup messes:

“Life seemed promising last year to Philaé Lachaux, a 22-year-old business student in France who dreamed of striking out on her own in the live music industry. But the onset of the pandemic, leading to the loss of her part-time job as a waitress, sent her back to live at her family home.

Now, struggling to envision a future after months of restrictions, Ms. Lachaux says that loneliness and despair seep in at night. “I look at the ceiling, I feel a lump in my throat,” she said. “I’ve never had so many suicidal thoughts.”

“The pandemic feels like a big stop in our lives,” she added. “One that puts us so low that I wonder, ‘What’s the point?’”

With curfews, closures and lockdowns in European countries set to drag into the spring or even the summer, mental health professionals are growing increasingly alarmed about the deteriorating mental state of young people, who they say have been among the most badly affected by a world with a foreshortened sense of the future.”

 

The record player turns to an old song,

 

“a woman left lonely” by  janis Joplin.

 

“A woman left lonely will soon grow tired of waiting,

She'll do crazy things, yeah, on lonely occasions…”

 

Listening, I’m thinking of the little one growing up, of cooking for her all those years ago, now growing up, into this.

 

Vivian Farmery

“My heart is breaking. This needs to be said ...on this new moon. Feel my words. Please. If you are one of us I hope you’ll feel my love and know my soul is standing with you with all the love and strength I still possess. This is no plea for sympathy. I know more than to think that’s the goal. We are activists. Our ONLY priority is the action necessary to make this poor sad fucked up world as much better as we can. Most of us have had people try to befriend us...care for us,help us...who pretend they want to feed and care for our warrior spirits to help us buoy up the strength we need to fight on. Most of us-I hear- have been gravely wounded by users who have zero capacity to shield and feed us but only want the shine of our activism to rub off on them... witness how many I’ve heard make statements like “I’m here for her”... but when the real shit came down their scared little souls were runnin scared trying to protect their safe lives. Not whining ...I hope and truly try to never whine ...but just acknowledging for my REAL sisters and brothers on the scary frontlines... you know who you are and I know how lonely most of us feel in the trenches ... this is a fukkin lonely road. Love and strength to you in light of the deaths of two of us... two beautiful souls who committed suicide in the face of their hopelessness. My fucking lonely heart is breaking for you both. All love and respect and admiration for the enormous fights you fought. My deepest respect and love to you both. I get it. It’s horribly lonely out here. “Who’s there to save the hero after she saves the world...?”

Rev Billy reminds us:

the fear and hate of American politics starts to fall down on the shaking ground of laughter and dancing. This could be the apocalypse that makes democracy possible.

We meet every day, in class, in the pubs, in the streets, welcoming the snow, offering mutual aid, greeting the day, calling out for something better.

@nygovcuomo stop the gowanus fracked gas plant!!!

“How do we end homelessness? Tax the rich!!!!

NYC Protest Outside Governor Cuomo's Office!

TODAY AT 1PM (2/11), at 633 3rd Ave in Manhattan (Near Grand Central) as we call on the Governor to tax the rich instead of hurting poor and working New Yorkers!

 

And we act.

Every day we act.

Riding through this majestic city, trying to make it better, offering solace.

The lonely are increasing.

Valentines inside, not at the baths with friends,

by themselves with their thoughts, on their own.

Hopefully we can laugh at it all.

 

Hopefully we’ll laugh together soon.

We have to.

 

In the meantime, the Children of Paradise is on TV:

 

Garance : Listen to the Gods! I used to laugh like that once. I'd burst out laughing, just like that, without thinking. But nowadays -...  Frederick : You're sad.  Garance : No, but I'm not cheerful either. A spring broke in the music box. The tune is the same but it's in a different key.”

 

“Frederick : You can't abandon me all alone on the Boulevard of Crime! When will I see you again?  Garance : Soon, perhaps. Chance will tell.  Frederick : Oh, Paris is so big.  Garance : Paris is small for those who share so great a passion as ours.”

 

See you there. 
















































































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