Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Little House in the Ghetto

I don't know if I've told you before, Nettie, but we live in da ghetto. Not the Guh-het-to with drivebys and hookers, but we're one block over. We are the last bastion of flowerbeds and painted trim before you get to the boarded up windows and bulletholes. I was reading the front page of the paper (calm down, Nettie, it was AFTER I read the comics), and there's a nifty little map with a pretty red dot right on top of our house (is a veryveryvery fine house [although if the two cats are in the yard, I'm in deep shit with Wayne]).

Upon further inspection, it's a story about crime hotspots!!!! What the f....? Apparently our very fine house is smack in the middle of some very fine crime. There have been 19 murders in our neighborhood in the past nine years. Although-- that's only two a year. Hm. Still not good odds. The story went on to say that crime is going down in these hotspots due to increased police presence and neighborhood involvement. What's a poor Queen to do? Since I'm not a policewoman (gunbelts make me look hippy), that leaves neighborhood involvement.


This is the girl who refuses to answer the doorbell or meet my neighbors. Wayne borrows tools, takes turns mowing our neighbor's lawn, and knows how much everyone in the area paid for their house. I scurry into the garage when I see someone walking down the street. I don't really do social. I have this habit of just saying whatever's on my mind? And people don't like that? So how do I combat the encroaching ghetto without going all Jodie Foster on the gangsters?

I go all Laura Ingalls on their asses!!

I am the proud new owner of a clothesline. (Take that, and that, and that, you murderers!) I went to Lowe's and bought myself a purty new clothesline and started using it. Yes, there are dishtowels, socks, jeans, and Wayne's unfortunately checkered work pants dangling in the breeze.

And is it in my backyard? Hell, NO! It is attached just to the left of the garage door, from the wall to a tree on the property line. No posts, no digging, just a retractable housing box in tasteful ivory plastic.

When the first load of laundry was done, I put on my grandmother's pink apron, filled the pockets with clothespins, and hefted the laundry tub out into the front yard. After I hung the clothes, I grabbed my bright yellow broom and swept the front porch and driveway. Just you think about driving your ghetto wagon in my neighborhood, Mister! I'm bringing thrifty back!

I have tomatoes ripening on the windowsill, pumpkin vines growing up my house, and clothes on the line. Now all I need is Pa digging a well and we are so set.

Registered to vote

Well, actually, re-registered. I never *actually* exercised the right after that first time. Guess it didn't take. Nettie, you know that I'm normally not very political. I believe that by the time someone actually makes it to a high level of public office, they no longer have any opinions or ideals of their own, just a carefully amalgamated checklist of hot-button issues.

However. Being firmly childless by choice and pro-choice, I wanted to at least be informed about what I was choosing NOT to do. I went to barackobama.com and johnmccain.com to see how the front runners are pandering. I was appalled to find out that John McCain wants to REPEAL ROE V. WADE and FILL THE CABINET WITH JUSTICES THAT WILL SUPPORT PRO-LIFE. Oh, my dear Whatever Above.

He wants to tell millions of American women that they cannot chose what to do with their bodies? He wants to look me in the eye and tell me that because my birth control failed, my health is not stable, my relationship is not stable, my life cannot handle raising a child, my family is already complete, I don't want children--too bad, you don't get to chose what is best for you, the biological contributor, the other people in your life, and that unborn possibility. Because he adopted a child from an Indian orphanage, I should have to carry an unwanted child to term and then give it up to someone else. Last time I checked, there are already hundreds of thousands of unwanted children in this country. Not counting the million of unwanted children around the world.

Also last time I checked, there were SIX BILLION people on the planet. We are NOT an endangered species. When there are SIX BILLION red pandas, SIX BILLION white rhinos, when there are SIX BILLION snow leopards, when every single person on this earth has enough to eat, a place to live, and someone to care for them....well, I *still* don't want to raise a child.

And NO ONE can make me. This country was founded on the notion of religious freedom (admittedly, by a bunch of people who wanted to be free to make other people worship their way, not t'other way round), including freedom FROM religion. We are free from having other people's judgements forced upon us.

Well, we are right now. But that freedom will be taken away if John McCain becomes President.

Whew, Nettie. That soapbox just attacked out of nowhere! I was online for a LOOOONG time yesterday, but I found this amazing website at imnotsorry.net. It's stories from women who've had abortions and are not sorry. They didn't see it as murder, they saw it as the CHOICE it was meant to be. They wrote about their reasons, and how their life (and the lives of their families) were bettered by the decision not to have a baby. Beautiful, powerful stuff.

It got me all riled up about how someone can tell me that I can't. I am happily childfree, and will do everything I can to stay that way. My Webster's defines cancer as "A malignant neoplasm" and neoplasm as "An abnormal growth of tissue". To me, an unwanted pregnancy is exactly the same as a cancer, a tumor. It is a growth of cells that cannot survive on its own that has the possibility of killing me if it's not removed. (I'm not being melodramatic about the 'killing' part either--women still die of complications of pregnancy and childbirth.)

I have applied to Rock the Vote to get a button on this blog so that you too, dear reader, can get yerself all registered up. If I haven't figured out the technicalities yet, just hi yourself on over to rockthevote.com. It's supersimple, as the internet gods always intended life to be. You can just fill out the form, print it, and mail it in. Apparently they send you some nifty membership card that gets you into the finest high school gymnasiums and VFW halls in your state on election day. Oh, and you get to decide who's running the entire nation. How cool is that?