The wonderful thing about dog parks is that everyone is there for one reason: to exercise their dogs. So, you’ve already got something in common and from there, friendships develop. Today before we left for the dog park, I grabbed a couple of copies of Ghost Key to give to several of the women. I received my free copies from the publisher on Friday, but the book isn’t officially released until August 21.
We pulled in just as our friend Cassie did and I walked over to her truck to give her a copy of the book. She works for novelist Tami Hoag and earlier this year, she took one of the Ghost Key galleys and asked Tami if she could blurb it. As it turned out, Tami had a stack of books from her publisher to blurb, was in the midst of writing her own stuff, and couldn’t do it. But I deeply appreciated Cassie’s efforts.
“Listen, before we get into the dog park,” Cassie says in a hushed voice, “let’s talk some politics. What do you think of Paul Ryan, Romney’s VP choice?”
“If these two guys are elected, women’s rights will be relegated to the dark ages, social programs will be gutted, and the poor, old, and sick will be living on the streets.”
“It’s a bunch of old white men trying to tell everyone else how to live, trying to tell women their bodies don’t belong to them.” Cassie nodded toward the park. “Old white men like you know who.”
Yes, I knew who. A confrontation a few weeks earlier with one of these Old White Men was still vivid in our minds.
On Friday afternoon, August 10, Mitt Romney nominated Paul Ryan as his VP. This development is potentially devastating to women everywhere, regardless of your marital or financial status, your ethnicity, your religious beliefs: Paul Ryan believes that your body belongs to him. He thinks that a fertilized egg should be conferred with personhood.
Yes, you read that correctly.
So let’s talk to that little egg, let’s find out what that little egg thinks about, you know, the larger world.
Me: Hey, Little Egg. What’s up?
Little Egg: Go away. I’m not doing interviews. I’m too embarrassed. I don’t wanna be on Fox News.
Me: Would you talk to Rachel Maddow?
Little Egg: Well, yeah, maybe. She’s cute. And smart. Has a doctorate, right? From Oxford? Or is it Cambridge? Well, somewhere across the pond.
Me: What would you say to Rachel?
Little Egg: Do I look like a person to you? Do I sound like I know what the hell I’m doing? Am I a fully developed consciousness? No, no, no. I have nothing more to say.
Little Egg (agitated): What? What the hell do you want from me? I’ve said everything I’m allowed to say. See, when they conferred me with personhood, it restricted what I can talk about. Like, you know, I can’t say that they are really hoping that I’m not gay, that I’m not a person of color, that I’m not an immigrant, that I am born to a very rich person who will support their tax breaks for the wealthy so that the poor and the middle class can die, just die, because that’s all they deserve, death, these bastards, death. Who needs the middle class?
Me: Who? Well, uh, you and me, Little Egg. What’re you going to do when Romney loses the debate with Obama because he doesn’t know squat about foreign affairs? Romney couldn’t even win fans in the U.K., one of our allies. He insulted the Brits about the Olympics. And Ryan? What does Ryan know about anything except the books by Ayn Rand? Before Ryan was elected to Congress, he worked at MacDonald’s. He was the prom king at his local high school. And he worked at his family’s business.
Little Egg: Ayn Rand? OMG. WTF. LOL. Listen, just between you and me, okay? These guys are really a couple of alien hybrids. One of them is a Mormon, a supposedly Christian church that was started by a guy who claimed he talked to angels and maybe even Mr. Supremo himself, but who really just wanted more than one wife. Lots of Little Eggs, right? The other guy sees himself as John Galt, the individualistic American standing tall against the terrible government that regulates corporations – i.e., his corporation. They love Little Eggs. But you know what? As soon as I’m born, I’m on my own – no universal health care, no public education, no firefighters in my own community, no policemen, and if I manage to survive all that, no Social Security, no Medicare, and definitely no Medicaid if I’m born poor.
Me: Great christian values.
Little Egg (weeping): I don’t wanna be born.
Me: They’ll make you be born, even if you’re the result of rape or incest.
Little Egg (now inconsolable): You gotta vote for Obama. He’s not perfect, a lot of the change he promised just hasn’t happened, he thinks the other side actually wants to talk and negotiate. But compared to these bozos, he’s FDR, okay?
Me: Suppose they rig the election? And Mercury turns retro on election day, Little Egg. We know where that went in 2000.
Little Egg: These guys will be worse than Bush/Cheney. Promise me you’ll have an exit strategy, some other country where you can go. Promise.