8 Things That Happened Yesterday: 1. Read a couple papers written by friends and gave feedback 2. Made Toad in a Hole for breakfast 3. Laughed 4. Took a liking to french babies who tell stories with great flair and charm 5. Dissertated 6. Worried 7. Drank some good wine while we lingered over dinner 8. Read for pleasure 8 Things That I am Looking Forward To: 1. Visiting San Diego 2. Seeing family over the holidays 3. Getting a job 4. Seeing what will happen 5. Defending the dissertation 6. Obama's Presidency 7. Receiving the jeans that I ordered 8. My friends having babies
8 Things on My Wish List: 1. Anything from Le Creuset in Cobalt or Kiwi 2. A Job 3. Vintage drinkware 4. A puppy that doesn't shed, bark or have accidents inside the house 5. These boots 6. Patience 7. A new laptop 8. Unlimited (free) airfare to visit the people I miss
8 Things I Love: 1. Books 2. Soup 3. NPR 4. Curly Hair 5. Spicy Food 6. Champagne 7. Long dinners with wine, friends and music 8. Sunday mornings in bed with a paper and coffee
8 Things I Can’t Stand: 1. Unacknowledged privilege 2. Using war to solve problems rather than diplomacy and understanding 3. Mushrooms 4. Poverty 5. Gender norms 6. Clutter 7. Loud music 8. Bad cell phone etiquette
I don't think there are 8 people that read anymore...I'm a bad blogger...but if you're reading this, I want to know your 8 things.
I rang in the victory with some really great people last night. When the call came in at exactly 11:00, we were in the middle of an intense round of presidential trivia. It took about 1.2 seconds for the news to sink in. In unison we started screaming, high-fiving, crying, and embracing. We were so happy. And proud. And relieved. Admittedly we were a little slap happy and alcohol-flushed but we couldn't help but remark that we would remember the night for the rest of our lives. To be honest, I can't stop getting choked up. As I re-watch the tender moment between Michelle and the President elect, the tears slip out and down the cheeks. As I re-listen to the narrative at the end of Obama's speech, the nose starts running.
For me, the night signals a change. A change that I have been hoping for since the night I didn't sleep in 2000. A change in the way Washington approaches issues... A change in the way the American people will view sacrifice, responsibility, and democracy. Obama won, in record numbers, the votes of young voters and racial minorities. People who have often felt left out of the two-party system. It speaks volumes of what Obama signals.
Of course, I can't help but reflect on the areas we still have to "win." California values livestock more than (gay) humans. Turn out was pretty low in key states like Ohio. These things still signal that lefties have a lot of work to do. But we're ready. We're inspired. We have a leader we trust.
I can't wait to see how the next 4 years turn out!
* I trust women and I want to see them healthy and happy. I believe in a woman's right to choose and that women's health should never be put in air quotes. 19 million women are uninsured in this country and women are more likely than men to go without care in order to cut costs. I favor health care that is available for all and comprehensive. Birth control and contraceptive methods should be affordable and prevalent. Obama has fought to maintain funding for the Centers of Excellence in Women's Health at the Department of Health and Human Services. He also supports legislation to encourage research that will examine gender and health disparities. The same legislation would establish community outreach programs in underserved areas to help women access health care and maintain healthy lifestyles. Obama supports the Prevention First Act will increase funding for family planning and comprehensive sex education that teaches both abstinence and safe sex methods.
* I am middle class and fiscally responsible. Obama will not raise my taxes. I am not an oil company nor in a household making over 200K a year. I don't own a business which exports all my labor over seas. If I was, I might consider McCain. To vote against my economic interests is...in a nutshell... stupid. Inherent in the idea that I'm fiscally responsible is the notion that tax dollars should be used for the good of all. I do not subscribe to tokin'ism. So I believe the Oprah Winfreys, Bill Gates, and Horatio Algers of the world are the exception. Until it is the rule that all people (regardless of race, gender, geographic location, and luck of the birth draw) have a fair shake, I will continue to vote for people who support pooling resources for the good of the many rather than the few. This means I see it as beneficial to financially support things like universal health care and public schools. Despite being communitarian in nature, it is fiscally responsible. It saves the US money in the long run and makes us more competitive world-wide. To be fiscally responsible means to vote democratic.
* I am anti-war.
* I am pro-environment. I believe that global warming is person-made--just as solutions should be. Obama will invest money in green-collar jobs. He supports alternate energy.
* I trust Joe Biden more than I trust Sarah Palin. McCain himself said he "might have to rely on a vice president" for expertise on economic issues. Sarah Palin has none. In these economic times, we need a president with a plan and with good people surrounding him.
I rarely read historical fiction. But maybe I should start! I was absolutely captivated by The 19th Wife. Completely immersed and consumed. I could not wait to pick it up again each night and when I read, I was visualizing the characters and location so vividly I was surprised when my eyes re-focused on the comforts of my bedroom.
The book parallels two stories loosely about plural marriage and sects of the Mormon church. The first chronicles Ann Eliza Young's separation from her powerful husband, Brigham Young, prophet and leader of the Mormon Church. History regards the woman as the person who took down pluralist marriage.
A second powerful narrative involves Jordan Scott, a young man who was thrown out of his fundamentalist sect years earlier, and reenters the world in order to discover the truth behind his father’s death.
The book is well-researched and packed full of historical dates, descriptions and documents. Yet it read like a thrilling mystery. I learned much yet felt an intimacy with the story that one doesn't often get from a historical account.
When I read books with multiple narratives, I favor one over the other. I impatiently flip through one narrative to bide my time until I can return to the other. Not so with this book. Both narratives were seamlessly woven together. Both required and received equal attention.
I highly recommend this book...in case you couldn't tell!