Sunday, May 25, 2008

Rain, Rights and Rituals

A text message from Rocky, alas, due to rain there is no bootcamp. And as tired as I am, the thought of no breakfast after bootcamp is a sad one. Last night Spuds and I, after a stellar big steaming bowl of pho in a warm, and sort of skanky too, place on the outskirts of Chinatown, attended the Dodger game. Last Friday night I was sweltering at the concessions stand and came home and sat for a very long time in an ice cold tub. We played the Cardinals last night. I made Spuds wear four layers and I was a fool for not having brought gloves.

Everyone at Dodger Stadium was pretty much focused on the Laker game. One Laker fan, despite his Dodger themed Valkyrie helmet, announced the score frequently with a screaming intensity worthy of James Brown or perhaps the most talented porn stars and the crowd around us went as wild as they ever would have for the triumph of the team we were there OSTENSIBLY to be watching. It was fireworks night. I entered the stadium through Bishops Road and was relegated to parking in a different friggin’ time zone and it was friggin’ cold. I was disappointed that our boys were behind but I was gratified that it was really a pitchers’ game and therefore efficient in that way that you don’t have to waste time with the guys running around the bases and such.
Suddenly, considering how cold it was, it was the seventh inning stretch. I was thinking that even with the fireworks I’d be in bed by 11:30 and sort of ok for bootcamp.

Rain had been light and on and off throughout the game and then it began to get heavy. It was the bottom of the 9th and there was one out and the score was 2-1 Cards and a rain delay was announced. We sat, smug in the farther back seats we are happy with because they are covered. It rained. People bearing blankets to sit on the field on and watch the fireworks on streamed out of the stadium sad and sodden. As if it wasn’t pathetic enough not to have Laker tickets. Spuds and I stared out at the rain on the tarp for a few minutes and then decided to call it a night. And hour later we were home and in a warm bed and after watching a program about the Dodger’s training center in the Dominican Republic when the 65 minute rain delay ended and the big eighteen million waste Andruw Jones pitch batted the third out to lose the game. I understand the Lakers won.

I listen now to quite a bit of hip hop while the kids are in the car and am starting to be able to, at least within the universe that I rule, separate the wheat from the chaff. When I am alone in car I still listen to my usual obsessions but through the kids I have come to appreciate Tupac and Kanye West and MIA as being absolutely fresh and also keen eared for sounds that have gone before. I like listening to this with the kids because there is an intimacy about experiencing the music that is formative for them. I beam and I am filled with warmth when men around me engage Spuds in Dodger, (last night Laker–the little TRAITOR) talk and are amazed at his command of information and mental agility. Going to a game without Spuds, just like listening to hip hop by my lonesome, just wouldn’t be right.

My boys will grow away and less of my time will be spent taking pleasure in indulging their pleasures. I guess it will be the next phase of our relationship, Him and myself when the time comes for us to create our own pleasures as we did for the four years we were in love before the fifteen year old was conceived in a tiny bed in a tiny house. I noted this week how the ceremony of our marriage was a pleasantry and a nice memory but that our two hearts have soared to where mere ceremony loses relevance.

I find I have lost my appreciation for kitsch the more decrepit and fake toothed I’ve become. Wedding ceremonies and funerals and showers and even bar mitzvahs have lost their charm and seem so given to excess and mindless repetition and anxiety. It is just a phase of shifting values and it will soften. That any adult in California is now entitled to the legal protection the ritual of marriage confers is bittersweet to me as this dredges up images with power akin to civil rights protesters being sprayed by firehoses. I am ashamed that things in the country I want so to be proud of, have been this way in my lifetime. The extent to which the law of this land has been discriminatory is so heart breaking that it is hard to take pure pleasure when our lawmakers, excruciatingly slowly, cobble out justice.

My kitchen is filled with vegetables. I have gone berserk with radishes and they are beautiful but they are the later spring varieties and have a bit too much bite. Himself leaves strawberries out of the fridge for his breakfast because they are so much better at room temperature and he is clomping around here in his South Park p.j.s and I am listening to Ella here in my nice kitchen and I am counting my blessings. How many couples in America are lolling around and chilling now, on the cusp of the first three day weekend of the summer? I have my worries but I am assured of health insurance coverage by my husband’s employer and that we are entitled to each others’ social security and if it becomes necessary, one of us can sign the paper to pull the plug. I have taken this for granted for seventeen years and I feel chastened now to think of all of the couples together far longer than ourselfs for whom the court decision came too late.

1 comment:

FionnchĂș said...

Romantic musings and self-pity aside, what about the anthropomorphic taxidermy? Explain the wondrous genesis of this tableau. Between my blog mention (puff for and your photo, the Kitten's Wedding may yet be the next craze of what at least Two White People Like. xxx me