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Friday 7 July 2006

Recent Activities

Aside from sleeping and whining and whatnot, I've been leaving the house once a day.

Tuesday, I was feeling not so sick, so I decided to go to the cheese shop. This was not actually a good idea. The cheese people are the friendliest people in Paris. One of them had worked out that I was an American and was asking why I was in France. He's a nice guy, but I could barely answer. The time was not right to venture out.

Wednesday, France won it's semi-final match in the World Cup. Huzzah for France! I watched on TV. Afterwards, I could hear people setting off fireworks and celebrating in the streets. So, I limped out to watch. The thing to do when you win a football victory is to head directly to the closest car and drive it around with people all over it, waving flags. A bunch of people were doing so around Place de la Republique. If you don't have a car, the best thing to do is go to some place where there are a lot of cars and climb on them as they're stopped at red lights. A bunch of people were doing so around Place de la Republique. It was an amusing spectacle. They climbed on a public works car. The public works people lit road flares as sparklers and waved them around, failing to note that they set something on fire. For a while, a largish garbage fire burned next to a tree but then somebody noticed and stamped it out. People yelled and cheered and jumped up and down. I limped home.

And when I say "limped," I mean that I have arthritis. It will go away soon, but in the mean time, I walk as if I am arthritic.

Yesterday, I thought I felt well enough to see a movie, so Nicole and I went to see the Road to Guantanamo. The metro ride in itself was more than enough adventure for me, but seeing a movie involves sitting and political documentaries are ok, right? This movie is actually a dramatization of what happened to those three british guys that ended up in Gitmo. On a lark, they thought they would go be aid workers in Afghanistan. It was incredibly stupid, but would have been a hell of a vacation if they'd all survived and the survivors hadn't gone to Gitmo.

You know Nazi movies, where they have the incredibly evil camp guards who are also fairly incompetent and they have that Hollywood Nazi look of a happy predator about to bite some tasty Art Spiegelman mouse? Now replace that expression with that broad ugly grin that male, american assholes get when they're enjoying seeing somebody hurt. That, wide cocky, cruel American grin. It's the new Nazi expression, because my god, we're acting like Nazis.

Being in the US Armed Forces used to imply some sort of honor. Behaving honorably does not include lying about what country you are an officer of, nor does it involve beating prisoners. Nor violating the rights of prisoners. Nor disregarding the Geneva conventions.

Yeah, I love my country. I love the land. And I love the music. And I love the brave leaders like Mother Jones and MLK and Cesar Chavez, but I do not love the military industrial complex and I don't love the police state. I hate what's going on right now. There are still hundreds of prisoners in Gitmo. They're still being tortured. George Bush is still president. He got reelected. Yeah, I love my land, but the people? Maybe half. All Republicans can fuck off and die. I hope you get the police state that you so desperately want and I hope I'm far away from it. Something is profoundly wrong in the US and I can't think of a way to fix it.


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