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[about the author]

i actually like speaking in front of large crowds. freakish, eh?

i work crossword puzzles in ink.

i am the american nigella lawson. or maybe the american eddie izzard. can't decide, really.

i would be a really good mom, but i'm cool with being a really good aunt.

i am sometimes more perceptive than i would like to be.

i am fiercely loyal. sometimes, stupidly so.

i never play dumb. never.

i am way too hard on myself.

i am a change agent.

i sometimes cross that fine line between assertive and aggressive.

i am not afraid to tell people that i love them.

i am militantly pro-choice.

i am pro-adoption.

i know a little bit about alot of things.

i typically enjoy the company of men more than women.

i am capable of being really mean and nasty, but i fight it. hard.

i am a lifelong cubs fan. do not laugh.

i have been known to hold a grudge.

i have hips.

i am not my sister.

i am lousy at forgiving myself.

i am an indoor kind of gal.

i am a bargain shopper. to the point of obsession.

i am 32 flavors. and then some.

 
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[in case you were wondering]

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[100 things about me]




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[all content copyright 2007 by tequila mockingbird. seriously.]


 
8.21.2003  

just because i write an epilogue doesn't make me an epilady
before i post my "real" post for today, i thought i should revisit the landing post to bring closure to some of the issues and questions raised in the comments section, and in emails i received.

- i did report the incident to the appropriate authorities -- both at the airline and at several government agencies. i have learned i was not the first, or even the third, passenger to have done so.

- obviously, this piece evoked responses from many…including my first official hate email. oh, sure, i’ve had the occasional voodoo curse. the occasional pox placed on my house. but no real full-fledged hate mail before.

i wrestled with posting this piece. i tried to be as honest as i could in writing it, knowing that i was probably going to evoke cries of racism, or, at the very least, racial profiling. i won’t pretend: it's a hard thing to do, to put yourself in that position, knowing your inbox is about to runneth over with allegations of prejudice and paranoia.

and so it did.

but, i think my experience was a very human one, and a very true one, and, therefore, worth sharing. and, while i won't even waste my time defending myself against allegations of racism [those who know me know just how ridiculous -- and ironic -- such charges are], i would like to make it clear that i was simply telling a story. my story. it was not my intent to pontificate. not my intent to raise the hue and cry that we should all beware of middle eastern men flying on airplanes and not speaking english. not my intent to mold or influence the opinions of others. certainly not my intent to incite hatred.

this was a story about fear. about being human in the face of the unexpected, indefinable gut feeling that each of us has had at some moment in our lives. we can't explain it, don't know why we feel it. but when your chest tightens, when the hairs on your arms stand up, when you can feel the blood in your veins growing ever so slightly colder...you can't deny it. as for comments that these were my interpretations of events, or that, somehow, recounting my impressions of events is unfairly accusatory to the men in question, my only response is, "i don't what else i could have written other than my impressions. this was my experience. what i saw. what i felt. what else could i write?" there probably is some perfectly reasonable explanation for the behavior of these men. but i do not know what it is. and i will never know. i can only know what i felt. and what i saw. i cannot know the truth; only my truth.

the closing line of this piece was, perhaps, deceptive in its simplicity. for, this is the one thing i know to be absolutely true: i cannot fully explain to you why i cried in that bathroom stall. was it because i was terrified? certainly. i am, after all, human. was it a release after three hours of tension? probably. was it because, despite our best game faces and our pledges of "i won't let them win by changing the way i live", this was irrefutable gut wrenching evidence that our world has forever changed? yes. was it shame that maybe i had been too quick to make assumptions based on the skin color of these men? could be.

this recounting of this moment in my life -- my feelings, my reactions, my observations, was simply put here as an honest account. a way of asking myself questions: would i have felt the same were these men not middle eastern? if events had played out differently, would i have had the courage to try and stop them? what would i regret not having had a chance to say to those i love?

this story was, obviously, a hot button, bringing record numbers of visitors to this site from around the world wide web, filling my inbox to capacity and sparking interesting and intelligent conversation in the comments section. for that, i am very grateful. well, for the hate mail...not so much. but, you know, you take the good with the bad.

at any rate, i hope that you -- even those of you who leveled accusations that this was a telling insight into my prejudices and paranoia -- found this piece to be a worthwhile read. at the end of the day, what i do here is simply tell stories. i try and tell them with as much unvarnished truth as i can. some might make you laugh. others might make you think. as long as i evoke some response – even hate mail – i feel i have, in some way, done what i come here to do every day. and that is to simply tell my stories in an effort to connect with other people.

as always, thanks for reading...and now, back to the mindless posts i'm internet-infamous for.
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