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Thursday, November 24, 2016

The Day of Mourning

For so many damn reasons, today is a day of mourning.

From the United American Indians of New England site:
Since 1970, Native Americans and our supporters have gathered at noon on Cole's Hill in Plymouth to commemorate a National Day of Mourning on the US thanksgiving holiday. Many Native Americans do not celebrate the arrival of the Pilgrims and other European settlers. Thanksgiving day is a reminder of the genocide of millions of Native people, the theft of Native lands, and the relentless assault on Native culture. Participants in National Day of Mourning honor Native ancestors and the struggles of Native peoples to survive today. It is a day of remembrance and spiritual connection as well as a protest of the racism and oppression which Native Americans continue to experience.
Given what's happening at Standing Rock, today is more laced with bitter tang than usual. Here's something interesting and hopeful:
On December 4, hundreds of veterans plan to "deploy" to Standing Rock Indian Reservation in North Dakota to join in protest against the planned Dakota Access Pipeline.
The event, Veterans Stand for Standing Rock, is a call for veterans to "assemble as a peaceful, unarmed militia" to "defend the water protectors from assault and intimidation at the hands of the militarized police force and DAPL security." The organizers hope to prevent progress on the construction of the pipeline as well as draw national attention to the cause. 
I'm hopeful that, before we're buried under a no-nothing-care-nothing-for-anything-but-profit, dangerously, willfully ignorant and callous administration, Obama does something.

And today is my first Thanksgiving without The Amazing Bob.
Grey rain falls from grey clouds
Rain slaps contemptuously against windows
Chill wind shoulders aside warm front
Mold and rust and soggy newspapers blossom
In the New England rainforest.
Green things choke with disappointment
Stray cats spit sarcasms
Old folks joints crack and howl.
Quincy 11/16
A First Rate Man-of-War,
Driving on a Reef of Rocks,
and Foundering in a Tempest
~ George Philip Reinagle
I’ve chosen to spend the day at home alone with Rocco and Coco. Why, you might ask, won’t that just exacerbate your monster grief? Eh. Yes and no.

I’m gonna be sad today no matter what – I know that. I understand. I’ll do a little. I’ll go to the Y and swim a few laps. I’ll have the eggplant parm from Saint Fratelli’s for my holiday meal and a glass of the special vino that Wendy and Alisa gave me. I’ll watch a movie and read and think of my beloved…as always.

I’ll go next door to Jen and Oni’s for a bit. Her whole big fam will be there for a mondo, happy turkey party. I’ll say hello, have a drink and MORE pie (admiral) and then quietly zip home. For as wonderful as Jen’s fam is, and they most def are, I’m just not up for a big cheery gathering.

Part of that is certainly the whole deaf thing that I rock. In a crowd of people I’m easily overwhelmed. I do OK one on one or two but more than that and I’m near instantly swamped, (not unlike the Edmund Fitzgerald). This means that I just stand around with a semi pained smile plastered on my kisser, missing 98% of what’s said before ducking out when no one’s looking.

This may change after I get my new smartphone – first one I’ve ever had. You see, there’s this new app called Ava.
Ava is the first mobile app that makes group conversations between deaf & hard-of-hearing people and their hearing peers, finally possible & effortless. (source )

As a team of deaf and hearing folks, we've built Ava the way we needed it. (source)
The phone’s due in the next month some time. I’ll let you know, after I download, if this really IS all that and a bag ‘o’ chips.

It's OK to not be upbeat, bubbly and saucily ON all the time. Today, I won't be and that's OK.

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