Friday, March 8, 2013

Doing Harm and the Loss of a Treasure

Came across a troll on Facebook yesterday.  Guy is involved in roller derby in California, uses a fake Facebook moniker so he can abuse with impunity.  You know the kind, the smug, self-satisfied, condescending insulter who pretends to an intimacy and knowledge of others in order to make mean little judgement calls? Yes, silly me, I engaged . . . for a while.  I didn't "win" because you don't win with them.  The best you can do is embarrass them to a draw.  That, I managed.

I was thinking last night about all the things my boy has said he wants to do and see in his life.  My favorite, I think?  When he announced, at the age of five, that he had a friend who lived on Pluto.  Another little boy, much like him.  He told us that, when he grew up, he was going to be an astronaut so he could fly to Pluto and finally meet his friend.  When asked what he'd do when he met his friend, he said he would "walk right up to him, shake his hand, and say, 'Hey, friend!'"

I do love my boy.

Post came across my wall yesterday, some guy I knew in junior high and high school.  Knew and, to be absolutely blunt, didn't much like.  He wasn't a very nice guy.  He palled around with the bully who loosened my front teeth in 7th grade--girl had been on me for months, I'd been ditching classes to avoid her.  She caught me on my way out of class, and I never saw her--she punched me right in the mouth.  It was a watershed moment for me, an epiphany of sorts.  I smiled, nodded, then, when her back was turned, went NUTS on her.  Like 30+ stitches down the back of her head, left her crying on the ground NUTS.  Thankfully, Vice Principal Hawkes had seen the whole thing from a distance, so I took a talking to, while she took an expulsion.  I hope she remembered me every time she went to make someone else's life hell.  I hope it made her think twice, made her hesitate.

And yeah, I hope that, even today, when she runs a finger along that scar she sees my crying, wild face.  Regrets?


Sorry--didn't mean to go off on that tangent.  Anyway, the post on my wall.  Here, let me grab the meme:

He finished the post with some bit to the effect of "wish I hadn't taken any crap in high school."  It was all I could do to leap at him, remind him that, all through junior high, high school (and beyond) he taunted me with crappy nicknames based upon my Italian last name.  Nicknames like "Pollution" and "Pollutti."  Even after high school, even YEARS later, when he saw me, he'd say, "Hey, POLLUTTI!"  Maybe he thought he was being funny.  Maybe he thought those were "affectionate" nicknames.  Instead of directly smacking him on Facebook, I said, "When I was in junior high and high school, there were kids who used to call me things like 'Pollution' and 'Polluti.'  Maybe they thought it was funny or that it didn't hurt, but it did.  Wish I'd stood up for myself, too."  He didn't respond, but he didn't unfriend me, either, so maybe he's chewing on it.

A good friend messaged me this morning, she'd dreamt that I was complimenting her on her smooth, hairless chin.  We spent a few minutes talking about the never-ending plucking that goes into not becoming Gimli.  I was reminded of a sad, funny thing that my boy did when he was just small--maybe four or five.  He was siting on his Grandma's (my Mom's) lap, petting her chin.  He looked up at her, so earnest, and said, "Grandma, you have the most beautiful beard!  I just love it!"

I expected my Mom to go off, to be hurt, to be angry (because that's how she so often is), but she didn't.  In fact, she was great.  She kissed his head and said, "Why, thank you, Sweetheart."  I hope she wasn't embarrassed.  I wouldn't be--I'd laugh.  Yes, I pluck like crazy because I hate it, but if a grandchild told me it was beautiful?  Well, I'd laugh and hug.  Because there's no malice there, it was just love.

Just came to the realization that a particular bill hasn't been hitting--for months.  It's not a big bill, only seven bucks and change a month,  and it's not a credit-type bill, but rather a subscription.  But I'm still getting the publication.  So here's the funny/scary dilemma.  Yes, I tell them, but I wait to tell them until a week from tomorrow, when we have more than six bucks in the checking account. The fear?  That they'll catch wise BEFORE then and send us bouncing all over the place.


Just got some really sad news.  Higgins Armory Museum in Worcester (say Wooster), Massachusetts, a long-time favorite of ours (and our boy's) is closing its doors at the end of this year.  Oh, I can't even describe how sad that makes me.  It is THE most amazing, incredible place.  It captures imaginations, kids and adults alike.  The collection is breathtaking, the layout beautiful, and the educational offerings in the form of lectures, classes, and presentations?  First class.  It was there our boy, then nine years old and completely taken with things medieval, was allowed to, after a presentation, wield a centuries old sword.  No, he wasn't supposed to, but the museum staffer offered, and our boy was enthused beyond description.

They say some art museum is going to take the pieces, but I question just how much space and attention they're going to give armor and weapons in an art museum.  My heart is broken.

Here's Higgins from the outside:

And here's a small slice of Higgins from the inside:

And that is a SMALL slice--Higgins is multi-storied and painstakingly, lovingly arranged for maximum enjoyment.  Spectacular classes (like swordplay, viking training, story hours, and so many more!), lectures, presentations, and offerings, including overnight birthday parties and the like.  This place is an oasis of incredible, and it breaks my heart that my future grandkids aren't going to get a shot because there's no endowment.  No rich corporation or family cares enough to support it.

They shut down December 31st, 2013.  If you have ANY way of getting there before then, I strongly recommend it.  It's a once-in-a-lifetime sort of place.

Now, in honor of my friend, I'm going to post some GOOD paneling!  Paneling I like very much!

Do not reprint without permission. © KAQ

1 comment:

  1. I didn't think you thought any paneling was good! This is nice.