A quick update on my last post, in which I talked about my mother’s bout with that godawful coronavirus: After I hit the “publish” button on that post, I did get in contact with my mom, who is recovering from a relatively (presumably) mild bout with the virus. Mom is doing better, she says, but she noted that after running errands for under an hour on Saturday afternoon, she came home exhausted. The nurse advised that that’s a common post-virus side effect. I personally recommended that Mom just keep taking it easy, and not go back to work if she’s not up to it (presumably, the nurse gave her the green light to do so). Hopefully, with new cases of this virus on a frightening rise in the county where she lives, her employers and colleagues will understand.
I missed out on an important day yesterday. September 18 was my sister’s 50th birthday. Oh, I did remember it, even going so far as to send Sis a card and a text and well wishes on her Facebook profile.
As you could tell from the title, this post will have a bit of color to it, mostly the first two that were listed. But we must lead off with the three other hues — and the frightening current event they’re associated with:
This is just one of the very unsettling images to come out of the western United States the past couple of weeks. It is there where a changing climate (don’t argue with me!) has led to an oppressive heat wave, dry conditions… and a tragic series of destructive wildfires. There have been fatalities; there are hundreds of thousands of people whose lives have been disrupted; and there will likely be millions, if not billions, of dollars in damages to land and property.
As you more faithful readers of this blog know by now, I’ve been working at home since March. And as you may have also read on here, while working at home, I do not dress up as Allison. My reasoning with that Male Mode Me is the professional, responsible one. He earns the bucks while Allison sits on the couch eating bon-bons and watching Bravo all day. (Okay, I’m making the “bon-bons and Bravo” part up, but you get the idea.)
This past weekend, Male Mode Me was checking his Facebook news feed and saw something that looked rather innocuous but gave me a bit of pause. There, in an array of photos my sister shared with her family and friends, was her oldest daughter — my niece — attending her delayed-yet-still-very-big (for her) junior prom. Yes, she was dressed to the nines. Yes, she was wearing a happy face. Yes, she was alongside at least 31 of her Class of 2021 classmates, who were just as well-dressed and happy as she was.
And, no, they were not keeping six feet apart. Didn’t have masks on either.
Well… this has happened again in Madison:
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Three months after a Minneapolis police officer killed George Floyd, Madison protesters battled with police and destroyed property downtown the night after a Kenosha police officer shot Jacob Blake eight times in the back. Staff writer Dylan Brogan’s story “No bad protesters. No good cops” is now posted at isthmus.com #JacobBlake, #protests, #downtownmadison, #Kenosha, #policebrutality
That video was a snapshot of the action in and around the Capitol Square and downtown areas of Madison, where despite flashes of natural thunder and the threat of much-needed rain, a conflict arose between protestors and police. The former were there to protest the reputation of the latter. And, yes, there rubber bullets, tear gas, and pepper spray released… not to mention bats, poles, fires… and lots of property damage.
I had mentioned in my previous post of how I haven’t been face-to-face, in the non-virtual sense, with my CD/TG support group since last February. The LGBT+ support center where we usually meet, OutReach, has, during this dreaded pandemic, barred walk-in visitors and suspended in-person meetings by support and social groups who use their offices for meetings. It’s an effort on OutReach’s part “to protect the health of our clients, volunteers, and staff,” and by extension the rest of the Madison community, as much as possible.
Time to communicate a few personal feelings I’ve been having of late. Yes, food is involved, but that comes much later. The first thought is about how my new job is going. This was my [add 2, carry the 1] 8th week at The New Place. The good news is that I seem to be getting the hang of it, even if I’m confused about what’s going on, unsure if I’m doing the right thing, or both.
Earlier this morning, Male Mode Me was scrolling through his Instagram feed and noticed a post regarding a certain local “holiday” I had completely forgotten about:
Four years ago, in this post, I talked about “Hippie Christmas.” That’s the name for the time period, normally on or around the 15th day of August, when many off-campus apartments in the downtown and UW areas of Madison see their leases expire, and the students who occupied said places move into other digs. When they do so, they tend to leave on the curb items they no longer have a use for. If said items are in good condition, the apartments’ new tenants may make them their own. If not them, perhaps someone who believes in sustainability who just happened to walk past will claim the item (hence the “hippie” in the holiday name).