Monday, September 12, 2005

Four years ago...

...Yesterday. Somehow it seems like a lifetime ago. I was single, though living with my fiancee'; had no house, no child. I had the television on at around 8am pacific time, and I couldn't decipher what I was seeing. The towers were already on the ground, and the news dudes seemed to be saying that planes had crashed into them. Even when they showed the images, my brain did not compute.
I went to work as usual, feeling rather numb. My stomach was churning. Then my beloved called me to tell me she hadn't heard from her dad who was scheduled to fly out of Boston that morning. I drove home immediately to be with her.
Her dad was fine, and I didn't lose anyone that day - though I was surprised to learn I could have. My good friend from high school and his wife both worked at ground zero. She in tower 1 on the 32nd floor, and he in a nearby building. Sue, had just happened to be late to work that day. The building was already flaming when she arrived. She stayed outside and saw the second plane hit. She stayed until the bodies started falling, then she and her husband walked home.
Even though it seems so long ago, I think of it more than ever these days. I wonder if we as a nation are doing all we can to keep ourselves safe. I wonder what kind of world my daughter is going to grow up in.
Today the power went out for about 45 minutes, half of Los Angeles was darkened. I was the first at my work to jump in my car and head to pick up my baby. My mind was racing about what was going on - I wasn't panicked, but I didn't want to wait to act.
Turns out, there was simply a glitch in the system; everything was fine.
Well, not everything.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Baby Video Brainwash

So, my 15 month old daughter has finally been exposed to an ubiquitous "Baby Einstein" video. It's a cute little production, with puppets and kids, with lots of actually useful information regarding body parts; eyes, ears, mouth and nose, etc. The problem? She loves the video so much that she wants to watch it...all of the time. She even knows the word "video" and uses it constantly to get mommy and daddy to slap the tape in.
When she watches, her jaw is slack, her eyes are glassy. She is, in the zone. I wonder if this is okay; lots of other parents I've spoken to have experienced the same thing, and yet most are fine with it. I have to admit, it is kind of nice to have half an hour to get things done around the house, or even "gasp!" relax for awhile.
But I feel pretty darn guilty, I don't think a video is what "quality time" is supposed to be. So, we try to keep the video down to once a day. This doesn't always hold true on a weekend, especially a three day weekend, but we are doing our best.
Even more distressing in some ways, these videos are everywhere and sell like gangbusters, at the price for a normal DVD! That's anywhere from 15 to 25 bucks! What a racket. As someone who is in the biz, I am astonished at how much money this "Baby Einstein" thing must be raking in. I am very jealous and wish I had thought to shoot simple but bright images and toys at my production company a few years back.

Friday, September 02, 2005

Both Sides

With New Orleans quickly degenerating into hell on earth, the evil pundits on both sides of the American political fence are wasting no time - at blaming each other for the problem, rather than getting the job done. People are dying and suffering right now, and people want to do interviews on talk radio about what to do. Give me a gumbo sized break.
I've actually heard some people say that George W. Bush's environmental policies made hurricane Katrina. Great, really helpful. Thanks for being a complete wing-nut. Why don't you whine some more about our president while people die and mutilate each other?
On the other side, I've heard people talk about God's wrath upon the corrupt and drug infested populace of the city beneath the sea. That's just dandy. Let's crawl back into the dark ages with your fundamentalist and fascist neo-con BS. A city is on the edge of the abyss, and you want to kick them off into it. How very Christian of you.
The extreme elements on both sides make me want to retch.
And to top it off our media has focused like a laser beam on all the negative goings on, while virtually ignoring the heroism and good people that are getting through it, and yes, making progress.
We can play the blame game all we want with this situation, but can we at least wait until the horror show ends? I've donated, probably more than I can afford; and I hope many more do. But in the mean time, I'm not going to waste one more ounce of energy to dignify the shameful debate that has prematurely raged while the sick and dying languish.