The memory of smoke

The memory of smoke

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Complaint and affrontery

I keep thinking about all of the bits of my life, my home, that my mother would dislike. Because she complained to me when others did these things, criticized their tastes, judged their priorities. Which is part of why I held off on giving her the address here, still unconvinced, wary, unwilling to open myself up to judgement direct, even if unspoken. Instead, I have built defensive walls of explanation and rationale. Now that I am letting it all go to voicemail, I am imagining it again, only saying exactly what I have always wanted to say.

I want to put it down here, so that I can leave it here, from this day forward.

Houses do not all have to be white. Red is a perfectly good color. Walls do not have to be pastel. Painting the house can wait, no matter how bad it looks. Yes it's "antique" in that it's old, we like it. Formal curtains with sheers are not necessary, my nice tablecloth and fabric intended as a spread draped over a rod are just lovely. Eventually blinds will be sufficient. Yes, we did pay more than you think is reasonable, so fucking what. You don't understand the market in this town, at this time. Yes we do have several computers, no children are starving because of it. Our cat lives indoors, it's safer that way, and we really do love him, want him to live a very long time, and yes one of the litter boxes does need to be in the bathroom. Yes he gets the best food we can find for him, if something depends on you for food, you need to provide the best you can manage. Just giving them what you like, and going cheap is not a morally defensible position. Like you did to me. Yes my hair is long, and straight, and I don't perm it. This is the way I have liked it since I was a small child, now I don't have to obey you on this. No, it's not childish to have it in two braids if I like it that way, and so what if it causes damage - my hair, remember? I value having a dishwasher, just because I have to do a bit of scraping and rinsing first doesn't change the savings - I don't have to clean thoroughly, rinse or dry - which is great. My hands are happier, and I don't have a dishrack sitting out.

No we are not going to talk about your sainted husband, although I love the idea of him on a candle, with the flames liking around him. Not that I wish him in hell. I don't believe in life after death. No, he lived in hell all his life, and you sat with him, you've already had your eternal now of torment. I'll pass.

Yes, that does help. Really does. Let the wheel turn.

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