Plague Diary 10: I Am Not Hopeful


the shining city on a hill where I live, which, like the rest of this country, needs to examine and fix its own institutionalized racism. 

Over the course of the last few days, I, like most Americans, have been watching in despair as Minneapolis – and Atlanta, LA, NYC, etc., everywhere – burns. If you know me at all you know that my sympathies are wholly and utterly with the protesters, with Black Lives Matter, because they do, and with all of us who are angry and poor and suffering and dying in what I suspect are the death throes of the fever dream that was the USA. Turns out you can have all the noble ideals in the world but you can’t build a shining city on a hill when the hill is made of POC bodies and oppression.

We’ve had a lot of chances to fix this over the years and we’ve fucked every single one of them up until we finally got to now, when we have an openly racist grifter in the White House egging the violent police on against journalists and POC. There is nothing I can say, really: as a white woman in a small rural enclave far from the riots I am pretty useless. I could send money, but I don’t have any; I could drive to Portland and be useless there, which seems counterproductive – I am in the land of thoughts and prayers and we all know just how helpful they are. So all I can do or say is, well, this is overdue and I hope some justice comes from it but I am not hopeful; I wish I was. In a small action I will virtually march with Rev. Dr. Barber and the Poor People’s Campaign on June 20 and I hope you will join me, even though, again, I am not hopeful.

I am very conscious of my own privilege right now: I live in what I think is probably the


Everybody deserves a patio and a place to snooze in the sunshine. 

most beautiful place in the country if not the world and all through these days of plague I have been able to leave my house and walk along the ocean or the river or into the woods. I’m poor now but I have been rich in the past and even my poverty is not so bad: I have a house, I have furniture and food and even healthcare (OK I haven’t paid any of the bills and I don’t know how I’m going to do that, but I was able to access it when I needed it) and all of this is mine only because I was born an upper middle class white child in the 1960s in the USA. That’s it, that’s all, that’s really the whole reason I live pretty comfortably in a place I want to live now. Luck of the draw, just as my access to decent education and good housing and so on is also luck of the fucking draw. It is important to recognize that and to try to use that privilege so that everyone, everyone has the same: a place they love, a home, food to eat, healthcare. Human rights should not be assigned to only a few at birth.



In other news apparently the plague is over. Wow! And all it took were thoughts and prayers! Isn’t that special! Add that to my list of things I am not hopeful about: I somehow do not think that the coronavirus has gone away just because Americans got tired of staying home. But everyone is saying that it is gone and certainly acting as if it is gone, so I suppose it is gone. Just a bad dream! Just another little plot twist from 2020, the most interesting of times! I do not know if it is gone or not but I do know I’m still wearing a mask at Fred Meyer and that’s not just because I got a couple of quite chic ones with galaxies on them from Etsy.


Cape Disappointment! 

In local news, another beach has opened up: Cape Disappointment is now open. I took the dogs there last Wednesday on an utterly beautiful day and it was perfect: sun, sand, waves and no people anywhere. Only bones. Those bones – on the left, below – at least were sun polished and mostly bare (I thought about taking one but quailed at the logistics, which would include touching them because ewww and also I do not carry a bone saw, I am so useless) but the bones from yesterday – on the right, like you couldn’t figure that out, ewwwwww – at Sunset Beach were still covered with, uh, alien flesh and horrible bits of fur. Harvey naturally found that corpse of whatever the hell it was before I did and got a couple of good rolls in. Whoo hoo! I covered this on Twitter and on Instagram but let me just say again that the smell was really quite indescribable and it is not, alas, quite gone. After all the excitement of yesterday morning it rained all afternoon and both the dogs slept all day, which is probably why Harvey started bouncing around at about 10 pm. He had horrible gas – I could hear his stomach from across the room – and he was whining so my anxiety decided he had been poisoned by the Dead Thing and was dying. I mean, what else could it be? And that’s why I gave him activated charcoal at midnight, which, thank the gods, doesn’t seem to have had any effect on him whatsoever: he’s fine and I am tired.

My camera is broken and I can’t even think about that, so I’m not. My desktop computer is in the shop – I am writing this on the laptop, which is fine but sloooooooow. I still don’t have an oven but! I do have a sourdough starter. Yes, I jumped on the bandwagon and I am about 9 days in of making my own starter outdoors. It smells amazing in a good way and I have named it The Unbearable Lightness of Being, but I call it The for short. I am looking forward to baking a small loaf of sourdough bread in the toaster oven with it sometime soon. And this week I get to find out when my gallbladder will go away, so that is all good news, to end on a precarious high note. I hope you and yours, whoever you are, are all well and that we weather these storms and come out stronger. Unfortunately I am not, well, very hopeful.

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2 Responses to Plague Diary 10: I Am Not Hopeful

  1. It has been difficult to watch the activities in your country play out in the media. I wish I could add something to improve the situation but there is nothing. Stay safe..

  2. Thank you, that’s very kind. It is actually horrible and it feels as if there is nothing anyone can do.

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