Hey Alice! I think we’ve reached one of those “teachable moment” things!

Okay Self, I know we’ve been through this before — but I think it’s time for a refresher.

When you find yourself responding to the news like this:

then clearly it’s time to give yourself a Time Out.

It’s not that I’m not sympathetic to what you’re going through, Self. After all, for the past week or two, your brain and my brain both (given that they are — usually — the same brain) have been spinning faster and faster on the same track:

domestic violence / leaked photos / leaked video / intimate partner violence / blaming the victim / blaming the victim-blaming / #whyIstayed / #whyIleft / gay-bashing / hate crime / white privilege / The Ex / violated bodies / problematic allies / beaten children / wounded souls / racial bias / #whyIDIDN’Tleave / #whyissheSTILLstaying / generational violence / surely what we have together wrought we can together undo / surely there is an answer / surely / surely / SURELY

Yeah, Imma go out on a limb and say that that’s a good time to go on a news blackout…and maybe also a walk.

Or eat some ice cream and pet the cat.

Or caramelize those 4 lbs. of onions in the fridge drawer. Pace yourself through the slow, deliberate process of caramelizing that takes 20 minutes of chopping to prepare for and then nearly 2 hours of tending the slivered vegetables as first they soften, then sweat, and finally begin to shift into deeply colored sweetness.

I bought some butter last night — so you could also break out the pastry cutter and the ice water and prepare a few rounds of pastry dough. Even if you don’t want to make galettes or a pie today, think how nice it will be to have dough already set to be worked this weekend, when we come back from the farmer’s market together carrying bags heavy with late-summer stone fruits.

Y’see, Self, when you find yourself experiencing a brain-fever-level rage, you wanna do basically anything that isn’t this:

Because, Self, THAT^^ is what gets us into howling matches on Facebook about commercial endeavors vs. justice for victims. Or prompts us to post comments about “gargling bile” on the blogs of random and unsuspecting Nice Persons. Or triggers us to snap “that’s DV 101” shut-downs in private instant-messages with an old friend who (I’m pretty sure) is as much a survivor as we are ourselves.

So, yknow…all Not Good stuff.

If it helps, I can give you some alternate images to strive for, while you’re working those onions. (Which, srsly — can you get to that today? Like, before they start sprouting new onion plants?)

Here are two better choices to embody, depending on whatever mood or gender you feel like working on today. You can be like Carl Sagan with a dandelion:

Because groovy and calm.

Or you can go more Felicia Day eating pizza while wearing a bustier:

Because Felicia Day! With pizza! And a bustier!

Just know I’ll be here with you, whatever path you opt for, until the brainfever eases and the rage subsides back to socially-presentable levels.

Now, about those onions…

3 thoughts on “Hey Alice! I think we’ve reached one of those “teachable moment” things!

  1. Random and unsuspecting maybe, but also appreciative and supportive. I’ve learned to be grateful for the anger because it means you care as much as I do, but self care is also very important (especially these days when there is SO. MUCH. to be angry about).

    Also, this post has made me quite hungry.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Anger’s a tricky space sometimes, isn’t it? There’s the anger that is driving and productive, the kind that helps me find my tribe (so to speak), as you suggest–but anger can also be like riding a tiger that may turn and eat off my leg if I’m not careful. Don’t know if you’re familiar with Melissa McEwan’s work (on shakesville.com)? Liss is one of my favorite writers for speaking with and through anger:

      “Progress is dependent on people who get angry, because anger—productive anger, motivating anger, directed anger, rational anger—is the root of all progress. Feminists/womanists and their allies know that change comes by virtue of anger. Progress ain’t fueled by rainbows and gumdrops. If you’re not angry, you’re probably not helping.”
      source: http://www.shakesville.com/2008/05/feminism-101-on-anger.html

      Here’s to a week of rational-anger-tempered-by-gumdrops for the both of us! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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