All posts for the month November, 2016

Oh for crying out . . .

Published November 19, 2016 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

I try not to cry too much, mainly because I don’t want to be misjudged as weak or whiny. Unfortunately, I am one of those who cries when angry or outraged. This is where the real problem lies.

You see, I have been teetering on the edge of hysteria for the last week or so. There is a lot going on in my world and in The World and it is quite upsetting. I am terrified of what is going to happen next as the big and little pictures are both becoming wavy and unsettling.  I drove to work crying the other day because of the state of the world (ok, our Union) but had to quickly pull it together to be the voice of reason (I know, I think it’s funny, too.) for the students who look to me for guidance and I don’t think it’s my turn to corral that barrel of monkeys.

And there are other things.

As I have said, there are things for which I thought I was ready that I clearly not.

Actor Boy has called me three times since election day. Actor Boy didn’t call me when he broke his tooth, or when he had been jumped in a mall parking lot or when he broke his sternum. He called because he feels the hate and tension and fear building up around him. He is a white male living in a liberal state and he is scared.

Batman held me on the morning after the election while I cried tears of real terror. I’m not sure he understands the depths of my fear.

I have a responsibility to ensure the safety of 21 students for nine hours a day. I hear things that some of the older students say to each other in ways that are hurtful.  I am actively trying to stop hate speech from springing up. All around me I hear the rumblings of a future that, quite frankly, terrifies me.

A few older students have made jokes that aren’t funny to anyone, except maybe Brock Turner and Donald Trump. I have real fear for the sweet little girls in my charge. I can’t do anything about it tonight but cry a little.

And be very proud that Actor Boy is enough of a man to feel the fear, too

That sounds like something I would say

Published November 13, 2016 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

Back in the way back (in the before times when I used to be smart) I did research for fun and in desperate hopes of getting into a great graduate program. You see I was one of two McFadden Scholars at in the Texas Wesleyan University Theatre Department. (The other was Nelson Robinson, one of the most beautiful and artistic creations that God breathed life into. Nelson once told me that I was the strangest person he had ever met. I work every day to live up to that honor.)

At the time, in the fall of 1991, I was making every attempt to graduate if not with honors, than at least with endorsements for grad school. With that in mind I decided to pull no punches with our newest faculty member, Dr. Renee Vincent. Dr. V. had a B.A. in Dance; an MFA in acting and a Ph.d in Directing. The woman knew her stuff.

She was also the professor for the Directing class.

Now I had always wanted to request but was rebuffed the previous year because of flagrant favoritism ( I had seniority, and more Alpha Psi points, but the teacher hated me for some unknown reason.)  The fall of 1991 was highlighted not only by the demise of my parents’ 25 year marriage, and the first time ever my big brother’s big shadow didn’t cast a pall on all of my activities but also the third consecutive semester that the Shakespeare course was not offered. This course was a requirement for all Theatre majors. After a round of highly embarrassing meetings in the Provost’s office, during which I was asked time and again not to touch the artwork, it was decreed that the requirement could be waived and I could substitute another upper lever Theatre course.

That course was Directing with Dr. V.  I was excited. That is, until Miss Arlington appaeared in my class.

One of the features/downfalls of Texas Wesleyan was a close relationship with the Miss Texas Pageant and one of the treats/prizes was scholarships to Wesleyan. Many of these young ladies took many Theatre classes. My final semester of College was festooned by the presence of  Miss Arlington, she who chose to forgo a requirement of Theatre majors  so that she could audition for the Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders, who arrived in my directing class wanting to know why she needed to read the whole play if she were only directing one scene.

I promptly countered this with a, “Dr. V. , I have 8 weeks of college left and I really don’t have the time for Barbie here to wreck my education.”

Dr. V. decided then and there to wave that project and assign me the job of her Assistant Director for the upcoming show, Aristophanes’s The Birds.

It was during this research that I discovered the following quote:

“For the ruled, little changes but the ruler.”

I sure hope that’s all.

Good night and have a pleasant tomorrow.

Because it’s Friday, November 4,2016

Published November 6, 2016 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

I am having a relatively calm day. Mostly because a horrible orange psycho is trying to get into The White House and as a Mexican American, I have a genuine fear for my safety post-election.

Some people have been trying to soothe me by saying, “You don’t have to worry; you’re a citizen.”

Um, I think there were quite a few members of the Jewish faith who not only were German Citizens but were also German Army veterans.

I didn’t get to finish this on the 4th because, you know, sixth graders.  This is when I would stop creeping up on the slightly dead horse and move on to another topic, because things move fast.

This morning I got a phone call from someone asking for Actor Boy.  Actor Boy has my number listed in a few places as his because he knows I can track him down if I have to. Anyway it was cold call for a Disabled Veterans fund raising campaign. I explained that as a school teacher, I have limited funds but might be able to do something after the first of the year. I agreed to accept an information packet. (I was planning to have it sent to my PO Box; I’m twitchy, not stupid. )  As soon as the caller heard my last name, Rodriguez, he told me to have a nice day and he hung up.

This was odd. And a bit startling.

I don’t know if some organization is starting a clandestine Spot the Beaners campaign, but it shook me up.

Because this is how it starts.

I have been told that I speak very well (for a Mexican.)

I have been stared in grad school because I was the only Mexican in the building who wasn’t also cleaning it.

This elections scares me. A lot. Not just because Donald Trump is so crooked they are going to have to screw  him into the ground to bury him.

I’m scared because there is a very real chance that this psycho will win the Presidential election. And then  the real nightmare will begin.

I can’t believe that we, as a society, are so far removed from the genocide that happened seventy years ago, not to mention the genocide that is continuing to happen all over the world, that we don’t see death when it staring us in the face (or grabbing us by various parts, depending.  I don’t think I’m pretty enough, and I’m damn sure not thin enough for the Donald to consider me attractive, so I’m probably safe there.)

I think we don’t understand how big of a number six million really is, when you think of people instead of a number.

Let me break it down for you using a quote from The Kindly Ones by Jonathan Little

“Imagine ,if they can, 13 people from their circle of friends killed in one minute.”

Now imagine that cycle perpetuating until all of your friends are gone, and the only people who are left are either THEM or US.

I realize that it’s easy for me to think about this in the abstract because I am at home, a cat snugly nestled in my chair (trying to shove me out of it, actually) writing on a computer that cost me about a month’s living expenses. I have a job that I love and am mostly solvent.

But my fear is real. And I want to share it with the blog-o-sphere.

Because I speak so well.