faith in faith

it's so lovely to be prayed for. more than that, it is important to me. i need prayers right now.

this is hard to explain, because i am not a praying person myself. i don't have faith, but i have a deep respect for others' faiths. i think they are vital, legitimate paths to truths.

if i could pick one, i might be a quaker; possibly a buddhist, even hare krishna. it's pointless to speculate, really, because i simply don't believe. at my most desperate moments it doesn't occur to me to pray, just in case, like i did as a burgeoning nonbeliever. i know i might be wrong and i might someday change my mind, but for now it's not a choice.

i believe that the only meaning my life or this world has is the meaning that i put into it. i can't be lazy; nothing is sacred without my own effort. if there is greatness, holiness, anything above savagery, it's because some of us have come together and created something.

also, there are no second chances, retributions, or prizes at the end.

in this context i think we all wander ultimately alone. not in a bad way, but totally alone. i am stuck behind an inpenetrable veil between my internal thoughts and the physical world, and under this clumsy guise try to reach out and touch others in the same predicament. (reminds me of on of my favorite bits of lyric: "Half of what I say is meaningless/But I say it just to reach you, Julia.")

i picture all of us: things that make no sense, stumbling around like Leslie N. in the Naked Gun movie wearing an entire body condom to get busy with the female lead. you can hug me but it's only my sense data that i really get from that, telling me i am feeling touched by something external.

but i like being prayed for because it's a contribution from inside that never tries to go out, and is not meant to hit me. it does not get stopped by the sludge between us because it's not trying to travel that distance. a prayer is a communication cast inward, and i like the thought of other little islands like me casting a good thought on my behalf into themselves, which are their own most real things.



1. free stuff. makeup, yoga lessons...maybe that's it.
2. i know if i break, there are loved ones available to pick me up and get me through.
3. bullshit dissipates. good, strong people come through stronger and those who aren't become irrelevant.
4. lost those quitting smoking pounds on a diet high in butter pecan ice cream.
5. goodness, random kindness, from strangers and acquaintances.
6. joining the silent world of the sick and the bereaved: their empathy, knowing what to do/say.
7. hair no longer frizzy.
8. visits from loved ones.
9. forced to learn a new version of myself.


a good day

so today, p, z and i went down to the national mall and witnessed, with two million other people, the inauguration of our new president. good for us that barack obama is who we chose to represent and lead us.
we were at the wwii memorial, nearly two miles from where the action was. but we were in a huge crowd that stretched another mile behind us, i'd guess.
mr. obama's speech was amazing. i watched it on the jumbotron, and heard it echoed down the mall with a few second time lapse.
hurray for better times.
here's a picture of aretha franklin singing (from way back where i stood). she almost made me cry, and her hat is sweet.



i have not yet seen it happen, but now we are all subject to search when riding the metro.

flexyourrights.org, of unknown authority, has put together a list of how to refuse to be searched. the only one i may employ is leaving and coming in another entrance or another stop.


Hurray for voting

The poll workers said that 11,000 Alexandria City residents have already voted absentee. The city only has about 130,000 residents, and about 90,000 registered voters. I think November 4 is going to be over the top.