Monday, September 12, 2005

Today's Forecast: Positive with a good Chance of Rant

Greetings and happy Monday to y'all. So, is this what it is to be an adult? The only thing I really have to look forward to anymore: weekends. I spend every day waiting for the end of work so I can go snuggle with Xtian and sleep. All week, I'm waiting for Friday afternoon so I can actually enjoy myself and do the things I want to do. Just pathetic.

A few fabulous things from this weekend.

  1. Got to watch my sister rock it out on the field. She plays field hockey (insert requisite lesbian joke here) and she kicked some ass. For a very nice girl who doesn't do anything to hurt anyone, she's awfully fierce with a stick in her hand and a kilt around her waist. I wouldn't mess with her.
  2. Went and saw Wicked at the Orpheum. Wicked is the Wizard of Oz from a different perspective, complete with politics, social mores, religious uprisings and racism. The music was fabulous, the talent: stupendous. I usually have difficulty watching movies/plays based on books that I've loved. They just don't have the ability to cover everything from the book. However, I thought this did a great job of at least keeping with the spirit of the book. One issue: (spoiler alert!!!) they didn't kill the damn witch. My aunt tried to justify it by saying they changed it for kids and for it to be a happier thing. Here's the thing, the whole point is the witch is not the Wicked Witch of the West, but just a person with hopes, dreams and disappointments. She's called wicked because of a particular PR spin and politic climate. So, the whole play, you get attached to her. You sympathize with her. She is the star of the show. I hate movies/theater that refuses to kill a main character. They've sold out the honesty for a "happy ending." And then we wonder why our children are ill-equipped to believe that their governments will lie to them and can't seem to understand that not everything in life is fair or good. That might sound cynical but you know what? I don't care. I think we are doing our children a great injustice by teaching them that everything is fair, just and good. That's how you raise children who don't understand that injustice is something to be fought. Sorry, rant over.
  3. Mudslides are delicious. Xtian and I almost made ourselves sick getting drunk off of ice cream Saturday night. Utterly delightful.


So, I think it's about time for another installment of Coley Reviews Movies Everyone Else Saw Months Ago.

Crash: This movie was excellently done. It was acted beautifully, took risks in the plot and dialogue and was one of the few movies I've seen in the last few years that actually spawned a real conversation.

The whole movie is about racism and the assumptions we make about other people based on their skin color/ethnic heritage. I found it really upsetting. The movie shows rather rank and file members of society thinking and saying terrible things without remorse. I understand that racism exists, and we are all ignorant to some extent. In this movie though, no one explores these assumptions/ignorances. No one questions their own beliefs or wonders if they could be wrong about a person. It's just taken for granted that all black men are going to rob/hurt you, that the hispanic man with tattoos is a gang member etc.

I was raised to love all people. As long as I can remember, I've had friends of all races/backgrounds. It wasn't treated as strange that my first "boyfriend" in pre-school was black. It didn't even occur to me until years later that my earliest childhood memories were filled with all different people. And I'm grateful to my family for this. As I got older and noticed that other people did think it was weird to socialize "outside" your given community, my mother explained that some people were kind of backward in their thinking, and that they just need to catch up to the rest of the world. And this isn't to say that I'm not ignorant. Everyone is. But, when I think something, I take the time to explore what is making me think that, and how I could be mistaken.

This movie hit even closer to home because of two things:

  • Xtian and my relationship. Being a white woman living with a black man has led to some...conversations with extended family members who are not the people. Strangers on the street glare at us. This is really the first time I've recognized that racism is directly affecting me. And shitty as it is, only when things directly affect us do we really get it. I'm starting to get it, and it is hurtful.
  • The thought that my children are going to be black, and beyond that the product of an inter-racial relationship. Which just adds another layer of prospective discrimination. How can I possibly know what my children are going through when they are faced with hatred and ignorance? Will my children feel strange when people stare or question me about my children's parentage? How can I possibly relate to what they will go through?

It's easy for me to live in my happy little bubble and ignore the stares directed at me and my love. That part of this movie made my soul hurt. But, it was real. I only hope that this showed an exagerated view. I hope it really isn't the rest of the world ready to spew violent slurs at anyone who is different from them.


Wow, that was some heavy shit. I haven't even begun to cover how I feel about all this. I'm thinking in high gear lately, so my apologies for this ranting.

As another note: California is so close to living up to the dignity for all people thing we aspire to. Contact the Governor: 916-445-2841 and get heard. AB 849 needs to be passed. If you don't believe in same-sex marriage: don't marry someone of the same gender. But don't you dare tell me that I can't. No one gets to decide which love gets to be recognized, and all humans should be allowed to publicly declare their love and lives together. Stop being bigots and furthering the hatred. Let's see some love, people.

Anyone who doesn't believe in gay marriage needs to see a gay wedding, and just feel the love and hope present. Even my mother, who is against gay marriage and believes that homosexuality is an affront to god (even though she has so many gay family members) couldn't help but cry and smile at the beauty of our friends' wedding. Love doesn't care who has a penis/vagina, why should anyone else?

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