Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Do What You Want

I don't know much about politics, but I know what I don't like.

Last night my kids and I were watching Jimmy Carter's guest appearance on The Daily Show, and I remarked to them that Carter had been President when I was a little girl.

"He's still alive?" said my 13-year-old, Katie.

Thanks, honey. He is! Though he is getting on a bit these days, isn't he? Still, it's not like he was any spring chicken when he was in office. My son Eric remarked that Carter is quite sharp for a guy in his 80s, which indeed he is; a great deal more so, I added, than Reagan seemed to be when he was in office.

Eric laughed knowingly. He's all of 15. As if he had any idea what I'm talking about!

Actually, my earliest political memory is of riding in the backseat of our VW when I was four years old or so. We lived in Falls Church and were in DC for the day. Mom pointed out some nice manicured grounds as we drove past and said, "There's where that monkey, Tricky Dicky lives." I strained my neck, but I couldn't see the monkey (sigh). I loved the zoo.

Truthfully, that's pretty much how I feel about politics now. I know they're important, and that aggressive, manipulative bastards market their way into power, and groups of people get disenfranchised, oppressed, or ridden over roughshod, or otherwise taken advantage of. I do more or less keep up with current events, and I vote. But I'm really not passionate about this stuff. My husband is - and then some; and maybe that's part of the reason why. I don't enjoy debate or conflict, and he can't get enough. I've always been your basic can't-we-all-just-get-along type. In other words, I tend to lie around on the doorstep with a plastic daisy in my hair. A little confrontation is probably a good thing.

Because if you know what you don't like, the next step would be to stand up and say so, and do something about it instead of whining all damn day.


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