Archive for September, 2020

A Solemn Occasion–voting

September 23, 2020

I got my Arkansas mail-in ballot yesterday. Today, I was surprised by how solemn I felt as I studied all that was in the envelope. The ballot itself. A page of instructions. A page of secondary information to fill in, validating me as a registered voter. Photocopying my driver’s license to use for my photo ID.

Don’t know when I’ve read and re-read instructions so carefully, checked and re-checked that I understood everything. Finally I marked the ballot, filled in blanks on the information-required sheet, checked and double-checked and, finally sealed the envelopes. (The ballot had its own separate envelope to go inside the BIG envelope with the other papers.)

This auspicious occasion seemed increasingly solemn as I made sure I had everything done correctly. But, finally, all seemed in order and I left for the Post Office.

I had on jeans, and, for a moment, thought they were much too casual for this oh so important event. But then I decided “Joe won’t mind.”

The first President I voted for was Dwight Eisenhower. Years ago. of course. But never have I felt the solemnity I did today, even though I know I am only one among millions. Can’t say why, exactly. Maybe it was because, instead of going to a building and standing in line to vote while others bustled or waited around me, I was entirely on my own. I was responsible for the complete process.

I am sure you will be voting too, some time between now and Nov. 3. I hope you join me in honoring the solemnity and importance of the occasion.

And in feeling as good about it as I do.


Kids reading adult fiction?

September 11, 2020

When I was in 5th-7th grade I read “Gone With the Wind.” We had very few adult books in our home, but GWTW sat in an honored place by itself on a shelf of the “What-not” in the Living Room. It was my job to dust that piece of furniture every Saturday. My paternal grandmother, who loved books, had given the book to my mother, and had also taken her to see the movie.

I had books suitable for young people….one about a flying baby elephant, and there was “Delicia” the doll, and “Rowdy” the dog and many more, plus suitable library books for children. In the seventh grade I even began on the Nancy Drew series. But……

That big book intrigued me, and, each Saturday, I sat on the floor in front of the shelf and read while Mama was busy elsewhere in the house.

I was fascinated. I was old enough to understand most of the “adult” parts by then. Baby birthing and certain sexual hints were not beyond me, thanks to slumber parties and the birth of my baby brother. But still, I was pretty sure Mama would not expect me to be reading that book.

She never knew.

I did eventually read the book as an adult years later (that was before we understood it as a racist creation.) But it was the most interesting when I sat beside the What-not every Saturday and read a few pages until I heard Mama leave her work in the kitchen area.

Forbidden fruit! What about you? Were you as daring as I?