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There She Goes, My Beautiful World

Hello emotions! What a whirlwind. So it’s finally sweet sweet summer. And it’s far too easy to let things slide after such a brutal winter. Now that it’s lush and green and warm I am even more easily distracted. By going for walks or sitting outside on patios. We’re lucky our new place is on higher ground but just last night we had dinner on Sandcastle’s new terrace on Lake Nokomis, and got another look at how flooded the paths are around the shoreline. Last week President Obama was in town for two days, to meet with a working mother, and he gave one talk near the swollen Minnehaha Falls and another along Lake Harriet. This was just days after my amazing boss had been in D.C., serving on the panel of the first White House Working Families Summit. All the best things were said and great sentiments expressed and I was actually feeling hopeful for a minute. And then. Today’s Supreme Court Ruling. My spirits are sinking fast. I’ve tried to explain to my male partner just how disheartening and discouraging it is to systematically be shown/told that one’s gender, which makes up 50% of the world’s population, is somehow inferior. That women’s agency and autonomy aren’t important after all (never mind, oh, SCIENCE). I’d already been feeling that sting. Lately I’ve been taking a good hard look at the fiction I consume. Particularly in film. How many movies even pass the Bechdel Test? Such a low bar and yet Hollywood has trouble clearing it, time and time again. But back to today’s news. We must find a way to ensure widespread access to effective contraceptives. Health care should not be tied to employment. White male right wingers in this country think that corporations are people, and fetuses are people, but women? Meh. Like another woman noted on twitter, it feels like we’re living in a Margaret Atwood novel.

In other personal news, one week ago today my son left with his grandparents. RVing from Minnesota to the Pacific Northwest - for A MONTH. He’s been texting and updating his Facebook wall sporadically so I generally know what he’s up to. But wow. A month apart. The longest yet. I might be a bit of a wreck by the end of this. While he’s away Minnesota needs to dry out. Last week a mudslide shut down part of West River Parkway. A couple of weeks ago we drove out to my boyfriend’s family farm and saw so many sad flooded fields. A state of emergency was declared in 35 counties. And the parks and playgrounds in downtown St. Paul, near our old house, were completely submerged as the Mississippi crested. The seventh highest crest in 100 years. Gulp. On a related note, “the 2014 Minnesota Biennial reinstates the Minnesota Museum of American Art’s long tradition of surveying contemporary artistic practice through an open call process.” The final cut is being exhibited now, in downtown St. Paul near all the flooding. And it includes:

a piece that uses craft but also an element of audience participation is an installation by Sarita Zaleha. A comment on global warming, the piece includes a blanket equipped with sensors that turn on heat when you move the blanket to get inside. The installation also includes needlepoint works that spell out the names of hurricanes, commenting on the effects global warming has had on society.

Struggling to find five good things for this Monday. Maybe five interesting things?

I’m a long-time atheist but recently I had the closest thing possible to a religious experience. Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds returned to the State Theatre and were even more amazing than last time (in 2002). After that I saw two of my favorite local bands - comprised of my friends - in a sweaty basement on a Friday night and that was somehow even more life affirming. Oh yeah, and my Dad turned 70 last week on our shared birthday. I was able to go out to lunch with him and his wife, which was lovely. And to get out to Pizza Farm with fantastic friends the night before. I really have been slacking with the updates here. Oops.

Pizza Kitten!

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