Today I just feel like recapping a couple interesting things I’ve seen or heard this week.
1. Blue Jay
I’ve sometimes heard it commented that there is very little wildlife in DC (excluding Rock Creek Park) other than pigeons, sparrows and squirrels.
I was walking back from a work assignment Monday and I was in a pretty good mood. The sun was bright. I had a new pair of shiny heels on and I had just come from a press briefing where I had sat at a table asking questions (better ones, in fact) along side reporters from the WSJ and NYT.
As I walked along the outside of the Treasury Building on 15th I looked up and happened to see a Blue Jay sitting on the ledge of the tan building just staring at me as I passed. I had to take a double look to be sure I wasn’t imagining. He looked like he was king and he knew it. I know how cruel this particular bird can be yet in that moment he was a beautiful sight and he made my heart long for a second to try to make his loud raucous call to see if he would respond…but then I remembered I was not a little girl frolicking barefoot in the woods behind my house.
This picture is not mine, I got it on Photobucket but he looked just about like this guy..
2. My fear
I love having long hair. I love how it caresses my back when I’m in a tank top or laying in bed reading a book. I love how I can feel it swinging back and forth when I’m walking with my hair in a pony tail and I love being able to play with it when I’m bored.
Well today I had to confront a fear…. female baldness.
I was walking to the DC public library this afternoon to get some travel guides for Italy and the Netherlands when this woman walked in front of me. She had a bow in the back of her head but I couldn’t tell you what it was attached to. She had some hair on her head. They were tiny wisps of white-blondish hair that formed a fuzzy halo around her head when the sun rays hit her head. And I wondered what a horrible feeling it must be to have lost her hair. Maybe she has cancer, maybe she’s had this trouble all her life but it scared me to think that I might end up that way. And I realized what a vain world we live in and how much I am a part of that… then I turned back into a mental zombie and crossed the street.
3. Heard on the train
This morning I heard two girls talking on the metro. They got on the train at Union Station. I have a general dislike for women who talk like teenagers. By that I mean that it makes me flinch when I hear a woman talking in a nasal girlie voice sightly raised. Grow up, I think. That kind of cute only works for so long.
Well I was trying to ignore these two girls who were distinctly using their “cute voices” to talk and I assumed they must be in college.
I ignored the conversation until I heard one of them say that she was still learning Arabic and French. If they could have, my ears would have perked up. Perhaps these ladies have more to them than their voices portray, I thought. Then that idea was shattered when I heard the other girl say… well I think Arabic makes sense but why French. I think the French are arrogant.
As a knee-jerk reaction I swiveled my head around to look at them in disapproval.
So here goes my rant (a rant I couldn’t give them on the train……)
“Listen carefully kids. You’ve got it all wrong,” I wanted to say to them. “It’s Americans like you two who are arrogant, rude and who don’t understand that each one of us is just a freckle in time with very little importance and very little suffering compared to many others in this world.”
“I love this country. I would sacrifice my life defending this country if need be, but Americans need to wake up and get a little humility.”
We need to wake up and do something to help each other.
We need to educate ourselves about other countries and the events happening on other continents.
The financial crisis and its impact on the rest of the world has made it abundantly clear that we are not on an isolated, insulated island. And it’s time for us to act, to use a little humility and to get to understand the other people on this planet.
Yes, the French often don’t like Americans. But can you really blame them? We come into their country and expect them to speak English. We expect to be catered to and to be served three sides with each entree. We assume that our medicines and sciences, our education and humanitarian activities are superior and we assume that our lives amount to more than “a hill of beans.”
Ok, I’m spent. I’m done my rant and I’m calm again. If you made it to the end of this blog, thanks.