Saturday, April 08, 2006

Never sell yourself short

There will always be doubt and worry.

It's what you do or don't with either of those that makes all the difference. And we are all capable of far more than we can imagine on any average day. Thankfully, average days are very rare in New Orleans.

Last night, I discovered just how strong and similar love and insanity are. And, how each in their own ways can lead to the other. Doesn't each of us have to be a little bit insane to fall in love and stay there? And isn't love just it's own "special" kind of insanity?

Or maybe it was the fault of the pitcher of Margaritas that found its way into my blood stream. Who's to say?

All I know is that in the last 24 hours, I have learned more about my own ability to love...and go insane and come back...than I have in the whole entire rest of my life. And I have also learned that I have done some extraordinarily un-loveable things, and yet I still find myself being unconditionally loved by a very great man. Kinda takes my breath away.

"Love without reason, love without mercy, love without pride or unconcerned with being returned, no wisdom, no judgement, no caution, no blame. Not pretty or safe or easy, but more than I ever within reason--that isn't love...and I learned that from you." Stephen Sondheim's words from his stunning musical Passion.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

The Real Mardi Gras

If you've never been to New Orleans, that really doesn't matter...In every home town in every part of this country, there is some celebration or parade or party of some stripe that could happen nowhere else in the world. This is our party...

Tonight, the crazies that are my friends and adopted family in the Big Easy will take to the streets for the Krewe du Vieux Parade, a satirical swipe at ALL the powers that be. This year's theme, not surprisingly, is C'est Levee! While the subject matter might seem too close to home for some folks, who better than the natives to take themselves to task. A good friend of mine is always reminding me (in a paraphrase of a Stephen King line) that gallows humor is funniest when it's your neck in the gallows. All this comes at a time when too many people are beginning to fray at the edges--after so many months of fighting the good fight, gutting homes, rebuilding lives and communities and generally holding their shit together--and we have never needed this most public of private celebrations more than we do now.

Maybe you won't ever be in town for our little party, either this parade or the grand madness that is Fat Tuesday, but that doesn't really matter. Somewhere in your heart of hearts, there will always be that one spark that you will always remember in that way...that always leads you back to those memories...of a home and way of life that you may have worried away...or just haven't looked hard enough for in a while.

We nearly lost all of this, some five and a half months ago...we may not be parading for anyone but ourselves, but is there really any other reason to join in the revelry. Happy Mardi Gras, y'all!

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

You'll know when you know

There is too much story to tell to make sense of it just now, but we are home. Some days, it is so much like it was when I left for vacation in early August...and some days, it is just as though the city is frozen in time after the flood waters receded, Katrina Patina covering all and everything...and a season's worth of decay and oxidation working its dark magic into the soul of the city.

Home. I knew I would have to return, but did not dare that I could be back this soon. No work just yet, not the kind your parents expect you to get and do...but the work is there, getting out to clean the neighborhood and wrench open the drains and catch basins and yank a lifetime supply of bottle and cans and gloves and works and obscure things (a Barbie doll leg, I ask you?) and to be seen in the neighborhood as just out doing something and being "there". Some days, it is all about being there.

Come to New Orleans, when you are ready. We want you to see how it really is...the media has done us a history of disservice from which we struggle to recover, an especially arduous uphill battle thanks to our self-destructing mayor and his chocolate city political suicide. Yeesh. But still and all, we want to come...maybe not just yet, but think about Jazz Fest or some quiet weekend. Prepare yourself for the worst and then enjoy the best we have to offer in spite of what you see and feel. We are home and some day, we want you to once again feel at home here too. After all, we have such a debt of gratitude to pay to the everyday people of this country who opened their hearts and lives to us when we could not be at home when we truly wanted to. Let us return the favor some day. For now, thank you.

  © Blogger template 'Minimalist E' by 2008

Back to TOP