Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Change your language, change the world...

In which our plucky heroine remembers that all of us together are smarter than all of us one at a time...

My friend Sarah wrote this short essay, and said it so much more clearly than I could have.


They them their

Say it, do the mental sit ups, put in the time, join the future.

I’m 42, my brain is no spring chicken, it has been marinating in this toxic blue vs pink culture for FOUR DECADES. Do you know how many times I have heard / said blue and pink pronouns? Do you know how much I LOVE words and language? Yes - a million “out of bounds / that’s a plural” buzzers go off in my head when practicing this new (to me) form of sentence structure. It’s hard work, just like all of the learning/unlearning I have done my whole life and just as important.

Writing with they pronouns helps because my brain is working on it and when I mess up I can delete the sentence and try again. If nothing else this exercise helps reveal just how gendered and categorized our language is. I am building a new space in my head linguistically, and the reason this starts to work is because I am not translating “he” or “she” into “they” I am learning to talk about them and the blue and pink pronouns are not present. I am SEEING the person for who they are, I am seeing THEM.

So here’s the thing. This upcoming generation is very awake. THEY have been raised at the endgame of our house of cards culture. THEY are rejecting the cancers built into the system with bravery and under constant fire (both literal and figurative) THEY are trying to move us forward. How can we truly start to see outside of the patriarchal mess we have buried ourselves in if we don't start pointing at it's foundations? At it's language?

Meanwhile pink vs blue culture is NOT man and woman united, it is man vs woman. It is gender reveal parties and STRICT rules around guarded boundaries. It is the binary war. Democrats vs Republicans, cats vs dogs, good vs evil - we are one species, we are not at war. Gender fluid and non binary folks are not trying to fuck with you, they are trying to live outside of this ridiculous monstrosity. The knee jerk reactions are your own.

It is time to decide for all of us (regardless of how long things have been the way they have been) if we are really so afraid to look at ourselves. Is the effort that it takes to treat someone else as a human being really just too much?

No one is asking you to change your pronouns, they are asking you to respect theirs.

Language is fluid and it changes, it always has and it always will. The question is are you willing to evolve with it? Are you willing to tap into your empathy and humanity instead of into your programming and it's infinite defenses?

Sunday, April 22, 2018

a week of springtime - garden news


in which our plucky heroine enjoys spring temperatures, before the heat hit later this coming week...

Yesterday my dear pal Thora came down here and did basically two days work in one, weeding and moving things around and cutting back the grass and weeds in the backyard and front. She groomed the sword ferns that threaten each year to take over the north side of the house, so now I can get past them into the backyard on a clear path. All the scrap fencing and lumber that had to be moved to remove Stupid Deck is now neatly stacked up again and out of the way until needed. The funky old plastic hose and reel went out by the curb with a "Free" sign taped on. Even the old rotting raised bed framework has been removed, and the yard is like a blank canvas, well sort of, for me to consider how best to configure it for future usefulness. Still need to somehow flatten out the lumps and divots, which will take time, and if Acorn Cottage ever gets to the top of the ChipDrop list, the chippings will help even things out as mulch. One can hope.
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The front yard has a mostly shaded garden bed alongside the front ramp, and assorted feral and purposefully planted spring flowers are making me smile right now. There are the last remnants of the hellebore, and though the white violets are finished, now there are the pinky-purple ones, and still some grape hyacinths, and sleepy-dicks, and white and blue wood hyacinth.
There are buds on the black elder out in the parking strip, and signs of life on the currant shrub. The rhubarb has responded nicely to the heavy feed of worm castings and has actual largeish leaves and at least one nice thick stalk.. I am hoping that with further feedings it will finally turn into something substantial enough to harvest from. Sadly, it looks as if something killed most of the top half of my star magnolia. I need to make waterers for the baby pine, the baby apple, the baby quince at the very least, since they will all be needing supplemental water this year and next, as the weather warms up. Hopefully there are a few unused white buckets lying around... drill a small hole in the bottom, and fasten skeeter netting over the top and they will serve to gradually irrigate the trees. I may look for one for the persimmon as well, since if I water it all summer, it may reward me with fruit.
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April SMART goals (x=extra)
# THINGS MADE THINGS FIXED THINGS GONE
1 celtic enamel pelican bathrobe shouldersbag to Goodwill
2 trapunto knotwork taxes donebag to Goodwill
3 pliers rackapple tree pruned spare lawn mower
4 charter #7 tunes moved old hose and reel
5 xAesa clothes mended -
6 x x x
7 x x x
8 x x x
9 x
x x
10 x x x
11 x x x
12 x x x
13 x x x
14 x x x
15 x x x

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Saturday snippets...

In which our plucky heroine enjoys the beauty of the season...

Today was a "ride transit way out to Beaverton and back for acupuncture day". While heading home, with an extra transfer downtown to get away from the slightly crazy Batman dude, I saw this beautiful wall mural, that must have been at least four or five stories tall. I was walking through a different part of the downtown than I usually do, as I had hopped on the trolley to help two lost Seattleoids find the art museum. Really I couldn't help myself, how often am I approached by two elders with the comment "you look like you know what you are doing, can you help us"... Put all the shine back into the day that crazydude had removed it did.
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And, I found this unusually red dogwood blossom on a street tree, whilst I was finally walking home from my last bus transfer of the day

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Apple blossoms are just beginning to open, on the one side of the established tree in the backyard. That one was planted about ten years ago; the baby trees from this year have leaf buds opening, and the young feral plum on the south side of the house had a few blossoms this year, for the first time.

The group of feral plums in the far corner of the backyard are almost done blooming now. I always wonder how they get pollinated in such early spring, but something always manages it. This year I'm going to start pruning on the feral plums as it needs to be a few dry days in a row, as plums do badly when pruned in the cold and wet. And the feral grape is large and tall enough enough this year that some attention now will encourage it to grow along the fenceline...

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April SMART goals (x=extra)
# THINGS MADE THINGS FIXED THINGS GONE
1 celtic enamel pelican bathrobe shouldersbag to Goodwill
2 trapunto knotwork taxes donebag to Goodwill
3 pliers rackapple tree pruned spare lawn mower
4 charter #7 tunes moved -
5 x- -
6 x x x
7 x x x
8 x x x
9 x
x x
10 x x x
11 x x x
12 x x x
13 x x x
14 x x x
15 x x x