Thursday, March 24
Catfish Dreams and Other Things
I read today that we are in the midst of a mega-catastrophe. I'm not sure the word catastrophe needs to be supplemented by "mega".
I made two grown men cry this week and I only returned to work yesterday. I think the intimacy of privacy lessons breaks down the brave mask that daily life requires. You can't work and talk about the poached elephant in the room. So you just pretend to ignore it and discreetly check the internet or your cell phone hoping that a miracle would have happened while you were distracted by work and the elephant will recover and walk again. Only every time you check in on it, there is a new blade hacking away at the poor thing.
It is very hard to be human.
Jason and I want to do something. Something physical, something direct. This feeling is, I have discovered, associated with being American. We are action takers, I have been told, always wanting to jump in and fix things. It is one of those cultural trappings that you think is just a universal human element. I first became aware of this aspect of the American "nature" listening to this episode regarding the work to rebuild Haiti.
I may be wrong but I really do think that this goes beyond the cultural confines. I heard that there are survivors who are feeling this desire so keenly that they are easing their pain by sweeping one small spot over and over. For hours. I understand that desire to do something, anything at all.
Jason thinks that we should go up there after all the radiation stuff is over and help them farm their land. Help plant the rice plugs, help bring in the harvest and tie the rice to dry over bamboo poles. I like his idea. It doesn't involve much talking, just working hard to rebuild this land that we love.
One of the men I made cry told me that it is probably going to be 10 to 20 years before it is in any livable state. That's a long time.
First though, let's hope for a miracle to kill the nuclear plant quietly and safely. It's like a rabid dog in it's descent (keeping with the animal analogy theme), trying to snap at everyone before it crashes. I am tired of it and its beta rays and neutron beams and contaminated water. It's too sci-fi and intense, we can't mourn properly until it is put down. We need an Atticus Finch to step in with his shotgun and put it out of its misery.