September 23, 2004 Birthday of Ray Charles, John Coltraine, Ani DiFranco and Bruce Springsteen.
"It's a great morning," Katryna said. "The polls show Kerry behind by just 3 points! And the Red Sox won last night! And Jon Stewart is on the Today Show!"
For once, I knew all this since I was sitting in the Comfort Inn lobby eating my breakfast and watching TV--to be specific, I was looking at video footage of someone named Laci whose husband, Scott Peterson apparently maliciously murdered her and her unborn baby. Katryna had called me on my cell phone from the room we were sharing. Just before she called, I'd seen my first Kerry ad on TV followed by my first Bush ad. We're in the suburbs of Philadelphia this morning, about to perform at a school. Since we live in Massachusetts, not a swing stage, we don't get commercials. I can't say I miss them.
I am encouraged by the polls; ridiculously so, if you must know. Good news buoys me and energizes me. Being an optimist is an act of true courage, because that which I fear greatly is the direct consequence of optimism: appearing to be a fool.
We heard Kerry last night on NPR; his voice is shot, and somehow it makes him sound more compelling and down to earth. To me, he makes perfect sense, and I have no qualms about his ability to lead us for the next four years. But 48% seem to disagree, although only 9% of REPUBLICANS think GWB should continue to govern the way he has been. Not much of an endorsement.
I'd like to tell people, "Just because Bush is a better campaigner than Kerry doesn't mean he'd be a better president." But since no one who's never won a presidential campaign has ever gotten to prove that, I keep my mouth shut.
So Jon Stewart said something like, "I don't know why people are so unhappy with Bush. I mean, sure, we invaded Iraq because he told us they were harboring Al Quada and had WMDs, and they didn't; but look! Iran has Al Qaida fugitives and weapons of mass destruction. So really, Bush was only off by one letter."
About the wedding dress. Katryna and I went down to Virginia to see my parents before our Jammin Java gig on Friday. My mother took us out for dinner and then we decided to shop.
"Girls' Night Out!" hollered Katryna.
"White," I said. "But it doesn't have to be a wedding wedding dress. It could be a flapper dress. Or a big white coat. But I want to wear white. White's a good color on me. And I need to be able to spill coffee on it and not feel too terrible about that later. Those are my top criteria."
We found a really nice dress, but it was basically a slip. I don't think my Catholic future mother-in-law would be too impressed. So the search continues.
Speaking of Catholics, now that I am kind of one by soon-to-be-marriage (though they've got all sorts of rules and tests that I don't pass, so I won't be converting anytime soon; plus I don't believe in that whole blood and body thing); I wonder what the Catholic priests say behind closed doors about the fundamentalists. I mean, we know what the Fundys say about
Catholics,right? "Papists." "idolatry." "Truly tasteless possessors of baroque icons." But what do the Catholics say about the Fundys? Do they call, for instance, call them "Fundys?"
I want to know. When Tom and I go to the Catholic Church in Northampton, there is a lovely, smart and kind priest named Father Gene. When I come up with the others for communion, I fold my arms across my chest to indicate I'm not taking the Host. So Father Gene blesses me in this lovely way: "May the God of your understanding bless you and help you to know your true gifts to the world." Isn't that cool? And he gently touches my forehead. It's kind of amazing. I leave feeling totally blessed. But sometimes Fr. Gene is on vacation, in which case, I may face the Bopper. The Bopper kept trying to stick the wafer in my mouth when I approached, sort of as if I were a soda machine and the wafer were a quarter. "The BAHHHDY of Christ, the BAHHHDY of Christ," he kept saying. Resolutely, I kept my mouth shut; no easy feat, mind you. Finally I hissed, "I need a blessing!" He looked at me indignant and whapped me firmly on the head. No words about the God of my understanding. Just a nice corporal punishment.
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