Brave New World

It’s a weird new world we live in now- if you’re at all like me you’ve been hyper attached to the news since January 20th and more aware then you’ve ever been in your life. Which sounds like such a good thing, but unfortunately it’s not driven by such a good reason. I’m so privileged to have not really had to worry about these things before now, and further privileged that I still don’t really need to be and am just now choosing to be. 

It’s become more and more important to me to make decisions with a purpose, to very intelligently and peacefully #resist. I am not at all what I would consider an activist, but I do care deeply about feminism and animals and the environment and education- so I guess in this Brave New World I am now an activist. It’s not a super comfortable role for me, so most of it at this point means I’m encouraging my students to be kind and to do the right thing and I’m forcing myself to read things that I otherwise would ignore and I’m making more purposeful donations each month and I’m watching more documentaries and overall I just want things to be good and smart.

I catch myself thinking passively, thinking I don’t care who you voted for as long as you’re kind to others and treat people as equals- but that’s not right. I do care. There was a wrong choice. 59% of the country voted, and less than 50% of those people voted for our new leader, and that is really a strangely depressing fact. If my math is right, less than 30% of the entire country voted for our new leader? How is that ok? What have we done? I am very concerned.

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Our parks and our animals need funds and care. Global warming matters. Bees as an endangered species is a problem. Did you know that if all the bees died we’d only survive on earth for something like four years? FOUR YEARS! Holy cow. And that if it’s not required to disclose how many animals you’re testing products on, and what those animals are, then rescue groups can’t come in and take those animals and place them in loving homes when you’re done with them? They just go in to ovens and then they’re gone and I could cry just typing that. UGH. Why on earth in 2017 are we even still testing products on animals in the first place? But that’s a whole other issue…

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Elizabeth Warren has been on the news so much for her speaking out (or maybe just my news? because I’m watching “liberal” news?) and I know people don’t like her and that’s fine– but one of the more concerning responses is that she needs to watch what she says because no one listens to an angry woman and that is what really bothers me there. Men were permitted to read the same letter she was not. Several men, in fact. WTF. Maybe you don’t like her, or don’t like democrats, whatever (ugh, there’s that passivity again)… but my real issue here is that your gender should not have to dictate your opinion and tone and delivery.

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I was recently nominated by some students at work for a Women’s History Month award, which is lovely and the second time I’ve received it (alongside other amazing women here where I work) and one of the questions the student interviewer asked me is what it is important for other women to know– and the answer is simple– that we need to advocate for ourselves and for others. We are not in competition with each other. We need to support each other, and raise each other up, and give praise instead of shade. Such a simple concept that we all seem to be struggling with so much.

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And really, I don’t mind differences of opinion- but if you have a green card you should not have a problem entering this country. And if you have a religion you should not have a problem entering this country. And I don’t care how much money you have, or where all your damn hotels are located across the world, people should be treated equally. Do you know how insane the vetting process for refugees already is? Because they go through rounds and rounds of surveying and evaluations and questioning and it can take years and it is not easy and I feel like you should probably read the darn policy before deciding it doesn’t work.

I don’t know. I have a lot of thoughts about this stuff, and I think a lot of people do, so we should talk about it. What do you think? What are you reading? What are you watching? What are you going to do? Has it really only been ONE MONTH? Because holy cow I’m tired already!

 

Travel Bug

For the past few years I’ve gotten in to the habit of booking vacations to get me through the winter- December/January in New England can be lovely (fresh snow! sledding! movie days!), but it can also be a real bummer. For example, as lovely as it is that we are getting up to 12 inches of snow tomorrow, we are also getting up to 12 inches of snow tomorrow. I usually book my summer vacations in December to give me something to look forward to– and this year I booked three. #sorrynotsorry

March

In March I’m headed to New Orleans for my niece’s wedding, which just so happens to be St. Patrick’s day weekend. My husband’s whole family is going to be there and a few of us rented a house together- I can’t wait! This will be my third visit to NOLA, and my husband’s fourth, so we’re going without a real plan or schedule. At this point, we know where we like to eat (Dat Dog!) and the spots we like to frequent (Three Muses! Funky Pirate!) so we can nudge our family in that general direction but otherwise just go with the flow.

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taken in 2014: that architecture! that tree! :: le sigh :: I am in love with the Garden District

April

Me and three of my girl friends are headed to Vegas for a few days in April! I’ve been twice but honestly hated it both times, so I’m hoping this will turn things around. The first time I went was for a friend’s wedding, which was lovely but because of work commitments I could only stay for about 30 hours. It was so rushed and chaotic, and not only did our room get messed up but I booked Circus Circus because it was the cheapest and it turns out my husband is afraid of clowns. Whoops. The second time I went was for a conference, I went alone and my anxiety took over so I never left the hotel. Ever. I stayed at the Flamingo, which is gorgeous, but everything is so big and crowded I somehow managed to convince myself if I left my room I’d never find it again so I skipped meals and ordered room service and basically became a sad Vegas hermit for three days. THIS time though- I am ready! We’ve got tickets to Britney as well as Penn & Teller, a hotel with a heated pool, I’ve got my anxiety (slightly) under control, and I’m ready to rock! Hard rock! Hotel! (pun intended, of course.)

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Britney I’m comingggggggggggggggggggggggggggg!

June/July

My husband and I are in the process of planning out a two week trip overseas with some of our friends! It’s going to be amazing! We’re planning on visiting London and Paris with a few day trips in between (Scotland? Wales?) and I can’t wait. This will be our first big international trip (we went to a Sandals in the Bahamas a few years ago, but that doesn’t really count as international adventure), and I feel super ready. We’ll have a loose schedule- a few planned spots a day, but the rest open to romantic wandering- and we’re looking in to houses to rent throughout our time. Have you ever been? Any spots you’d recommend?