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Coffee Cockacracy Vol. 2

I went back to the coffee shop today because it is my coffee shop and because I am a frugal person in possession of free coffee cards. The men were once again holding forth on the Weinstein revelations–“bla bla, if the women took money, they shouldn’t be complaining now; bla, bla, why didn’t they stand up for themselves at the time?” I had forgotten my headphones so, though sitting apart from them, couldn’t help hearing hearing their male entitlement mishegos. The female barristas were held hostage since they couldn’t yell at customers without jeopardizing their jobs; the mothers were shaking their heads as their toddlers played; the millennials were hunched over their devices trying to ignore the misogyny broadcast. The men rambled on loudly–“you gotta understand, women can’t have it both ways”– ironically luxuriating on the cockacratic continuum whose existence they were denying. Reader, I blew up. “You fucking guys, why don’t you just give it a rest? The rest of us don’t want to hear your sexist bullshit, did that ever occur to you?” and so on, and so forth. At one point one of them said, “Your generation of women don’t listen well enough. That’s why you can’t make relationships work. We’re used to women who know how to be wives.” At which point this spinster in a fur hat really blew up. “THE GOOD OLD DAYS WHEN WOMAN COULDN’T HAVE OUR OWN BANK ACCOUNTS? OR BETTER YET, WHEN WE COULDN’T VOTE? FOR FUCK’S SAKE WE’RE DAMNED IF WE DO AND DAMNED IF WE DON’T. IF WE SAY SOMETHING, WE’RE BLACK-BALLED BITCHES. IF WE DON’T, WE’RE BLAMED LATER FOR NOT STANDING UP FOR OURSELVES.” Continue Reading →

Scarves and Fishes

I was driving on, no joke, the Cranberry Highway–all hail the twee names of New England!–when I saw the Blessed Mother beckoning today. It’s enough to make me laugh though I never would at dear Mary, because it turns out she was answering my shallowest of prayers: to find a marvelous local thrift shop. Silk scarves and a leather trench coat she did lay upon me, as her son might have conjured loaves and fishes. With grace and an unappreciated wink,  reminds us of the magic of faith. How we need her sweetly sturdy beauty now.

Massholia Ornithology

Right before I left for Cape Cod, a girl at my local coffee shop said, “I bet everyone is super laid back there.” I couldn’t help laughing. Growing up in Massachusetts and moving to New York City right after school, I first encountered a laidback person when I visited California at the end of my twenties. “Ooooh,” I remember thinking as I struggled valiantly not to interrupt the slow-talkers and slam into the slow-walkers. “This is laid-back.”

The truth is that native Massholes are impatient, skeptical people who loathe airs and whose only form of pretentiousness is an avowed hatred of pretentiousness. Regardless of their ethnicity, religion, or sexuality, almost everyone in this state dresses terribly, drives even worse, and prides themselves on their frugality and inability to suffer fools. I find it all totally endearing, especially because, since nobody shines you on, the friendships you form are life-long and right as rain.

But the people are hardly laidback. Continue Reading →

"All, everything I understand, I understand only because I love."
― Leo Tolstoy