Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Happy Soggy Halloween

The rain cleared in time for most trick or treating here in Fort Worth, but it sure looked grim for a while. Warm this morning, but the rain began about noon, and the temperature began to drop. Tonight, it is a chilly, damp 55 outside. I turned on the heat and cozied up the cottage.

Jordan and Christian have dinner guests—people I’m fond of—for enchiladas and trick or treating, but I elected to eat a salad in the cottage. Sort of uncharacteristic because I usually welcome social opportunities, but I’m in a working pattern and have not fixed myself up all day. I doubt Jordan’s suggestion that I put on shoes would be enough. I need a shampoo, make-up, fresh clothes—and I just don’t feel like doing that.

Poor Sophie, she has a hot spot on her back end and persists in getting under the wooden coffee table, where she scratches against it lower portion. It’s grotesque looking, and I know it only aggravates the problem. I give her Benadryl twice a day, which the vet says is fine if it controls the itching. I’m about to up it to three times but will ask permission first.

Sophie was never afraid of storms as a pup, but oh my! She does not like thunder now. Seems to think the bedroom is the safest place, perhaps because it doesn’t have all the windows that other parts of the house do. First clap of thunder, and she makes a beeline for her dark, cozy safe place.

Proud of myself on two counts today: my printer jammed, which was all my fault because I left something across the output tray, which caused the paper to back up and jam. I thought I was stymied, but I managed to fish all the crumpled paper out. Taking out the cartridge scared me, and getting it seated right again was a challenge. But I did it.

I am much prouder of my second brag. I reached out to a Trump supporter today, a woman who worked at the university when I did. I’d been responding to her emails, politely but disagreeing. I tried to explain why I didn’t think that we were in danger from an immigrant caravan and, no, they were not terrorists from middle eastern countries. She responded that one man said he wanted to come back to the States to fight a murder conviction, and I said of course in 5,000 people there were some shady characters, but our immigration laws are meant to deal with that.

A friend of hers sandbagged me, in a totally off-topic rant about lyin’ Hilary and what Democrats have done to social security since FDR (I wish she’d explained that one) and telling me to learn the facts and then apologize. I wrote back saying I didn’t have conversations with people who repeat trump-rally rhetoric, and she owed me a apology.

But I thought the first woman had been reasonable, and I enjoyed being able to express myself without antagonism. So I reached out and asked where she worked at the university. Turns out we shared some professors and were both there a long time—and decided yes, we could become friends. Now it occurs to me I should reach out to a couple of other people who have dropped from my life (mostly my fault) over politics. I like conversation—but not diatribes. Still I feel what I did today is one teensy tiny step toward healing the divisiveness in our country.

And so, my friends, on the rainy Halloween, stay dry, be kind to trick or treaters, and treasure the good and kind people in your life.


Anonymous said...

Good God how can one discard friendships over politics?..the older I get I realize how hard it is to find true friendships. I totally disagree with your politics but I adore you as an individual and consider myself blessed to have known you and your family.

judyalter said...

I'm laughing at your left-handed compliment, but thank you. Whoever you are (and I wish I knew), I'm sure I adore you too. If we never talk politics, that's okay. IF you want to have an open and civil discussion of politics, I'd like that. But I am increasingly frustrated by the level of civility in this country and the lack of humane compassion. People who accept it frustrate me, and I'm too old to be tolerant of their company. People who avidly espouse what I call trump-rally talk frustrate me. I agree with you--the older we get, the harder it is to make friends. But it's a true joy to treasure those we have.