Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Warrior Princess

This morning is my last quiet one in Atlantic City. I didn’t take advantage as much as I should have the beauty of the casino evening lights twinkling on the bay, the mornings, like now, where birds of all sorts swoon over the water. Nor even the sliding glass door, and windows' view opening out into it all, though daylight, reminiscent of my home in Manhattan Beach overlooked the Pacific in quite the same way. And being a Piscean, both homes with all that water should have instilled a calm in me, a baptismal of rejuvenation.

I’m boxing and suit-casing my things again, seems like a dozen times since last August’s eviction, deciding what joins the New Jersey storage unit, what goes to Pennsylvania (and did I leave that summer halter in Los Angeles?). Career and even my focus is as divided as my scattered things.

National Renters Rights And Homelessness Awareness Week was soft-launched this week. It is only a naming because all things need a name to give it possibility. What does housing advocacy have to do in a sex blog, you ask?

Courage to talk about it. Courage to openly desire both the self-pleasure and fair play of it. And
mixing the two, if any notoriety occurs (other than found on Google :) makes me an easy target for name calling and being made disreputable. (Hey, Lynn Cheney and Newt did sex in their fictions, and the Republican Guard didn’t blink, need more be said?) Who would have thought sexual dialogue (and increasingly dildos) is more contraband than guns?

But renters rights may well be more controversial than sex. If you’re not buying a house or flipping it, you just aren’t living the true American dream. Complain for your consumer rights as a renter? Maybe you don’t think it quite fair to be displaced against your will? Well, you are lazy and irresponsible and should just save your money and buy a house. That landlord owns that property and should be able to do whatever he or she wants. Never mind that renters help that landlord afford that property, or that the 30% US renter population helps that 30% of housing economy exist. And if you are homeless… what kind of incompetent are you?

Courage. A warrior, is supposed to hold his or her power inside, and use it when the timing is right. That according to Carlos Casteneda and probably in Sun Tzu’s Art of War. From Macchiavelli all I can remember is “noblesse oblige.” Author and Huffington Post blogger Kathleen Reardon says, liberals “On the whole … lack adequate comprehension of the scheming side of human behavior.” We need to fight tough and unpredictably like Republicans do, even if we won’t play dirty, she adds. I’ve known some sleazy liberal-leaning people, in my time, so don’t know if that’s always true about liberals taking the high-ground. But, personally, I for one, can cop to her generalization, successful strategist, I am not. However, counterpoint of sorts, Robert Redford today says that “substance” must regain its backbone over the cult of strategy alone. I ask all the housing advocates to join common strength on that point.

Naked sex and Politics is Naked for a reason.

The facades we all wear, and the pain we all cause each other, intentionally or not, perpetuate more masks. I’ve been no-fault evicted twice; sued thrice -- home, book and car. Bottom feeders climb on the backs of littler ones, because the powerful have too many lawyers.

Feeling the outcast, like the misunderstood Wicked Witch of the West (and the East, since I’m bicoastally nomadic) in Gregory Maguire’s Wicked , I can’t help but wonder how I landed here in such an isolating world (Bush’s regime, as an OZ wizardship, with iPods, errrr, opium fields under our spell? I’d love to dance as poised as Bebe Neuwirth, though).

But my courage, like the cowardly lion, is instilled from fear of yet more injury. I don’t bare in silence and acceptance like Jessica Clements, a young soldier who braved her massive brain injuries from Iraq, still proud to be a soldier. Mine is a whiny courage.

Standing here, neither Ms. Joan of Arc nor Lady Godiva (who earned me a scholarship to UCLA when I was eighteen writing about her), but just a person, silly enough, stubborn enough, or maybe truly courageous/worried enough to take a stand. Okay, a little exhibitionistic— but always doing it for real causes— and, dare I add any labeling of the overly misused “patriot”— for democracy and for the integrity of self.

Wave the flag, expose your nudity and shout for what’s right. Now, if I could only find a great pair of ruby slippers, click my heels and get a home of my own. (Maybe the five, new aesthetically gorgeous, fully functional windmills added to the Atlantic City skyscape can generate a giving breeze.) A brave King Charming would be welcome, to share with me “the bed" people say "I've made” and can someday hope “to sleep in.” Fairy Tales can eventually have happy endings and so, too, one must believe, our life paths, and our society, when we speak and follow our truths.

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