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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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[100 things about me]




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


 
11.23.2003  

the bird is back
it was a great trip. exhausting -- in the best possible way.

i thought about a lot of things.

about how the deaths of 17 italian soldiers bring a nation to a standstill for a national day of mourning. about how, at 11:30 on a tuesday night, thousands of italians are lined up outside a building where the soldiers' bodies lie in state, waiting to pay their respects. the huge marble staircase leading up to the front of the building is covered with flowers. many in the crowd are passing their flowers toward the steps, the cellophane bundles being passed overhead from stranger to stranger until they finally find their way to the steps.

and i was moved to tears, ashamed that it was the first time since the war in iraq began that i had taken part in an official state acknowledgement of the lives lost.

and i thought about how it's too bad we don't have something like speakers' corner in the united states. a place where anyone can go and speak their mind about whatever they please. a public forum for discussion. about how amazing it was to watch intelligent, polite, but still passionate honest-to-god debate. no partisanship. no name-calling. just debate. and i realized that here, in the alleged home of free speech, those who spoke their mind so boldly would be derided as unpatriotic. told to leave if they didn't like it. or maybe just shot.

and i was angry, frustrated by how my idea of the world i thought i would live in as an adult is so far from the reality.

i thought about the demonstration i watched in london. a group of muslim men chanted, shirtless in the street. and, as i drew closer to them, i realized that what i had thought was a drum, keeping perfect cadence with their chanting, was actually the sound of the men striking their chests. some to the point of bleeding. watching them, i saw that many of their backs were scarred. reminders of their unwavering commitment to their beliefs. i thought about these men again a few days later, standing in st. peter's, watching the sun's rays stream through the windows, glinting off of the shimmering mosaics of the cupola.

i thought that the two scenes were equally beautiful. and powerful. and awe-inspiring.

and i was reminded that the world is just as small as it is infinite.

----

ps - i love photos. i love the way you can relive a moment by flipping through the images. for that reason, i was disappointed to discover that i didn't take a lot of great photos on my adventure. and i didn't take many "artsy" photos at all. no pictures of london neo-punks. no shots of beautiful old italian men waiting outside the gelateria. at first i was disappointed that i hadn't taken more photos. or at least more interesting photos. but, then i realized that, for the first time in a long time, i had been too busy being present to remember to take pictures.

and maybe that makes for the best vacation of all.

anyway, london here. rome there.
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