html xmlns="" xml:lang="en" lang="en"> From the archives: See you in a couple hours. Sleep is for the weak.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

See you in a couple hours. Sleep is for the weak.

Sometimes you’re going along, reading the blogs on the political circuit and everyone is talking about a series of articles about Dick Cheney. That happens sometimes. You read the articles, and when you get to the last one, it talks about how Cheney acted illegally to make a decision in the Klamath that killed a lot of fish. Now THAT makes you sit up straight. You happen to be a chick engineer who reads every news story about western water every single day, and you have for years. So, even though the Klamath isn’t your usual beat, you have a passing knowledge of it. You remember all the pathos-filled stories about salmon boats making a mournful sound as they clanked against the docks at the marina, nets empty, fisherman looking longingly at the sea. Maybe it struck you when you read that article about the Karuk Tribes getting diabetes since their preferred diet had been killed off. And didn’t you just read about salmon emergency relief money? Coulda sworn you did! So it dawns on you… maybe you could put Cheney’s maneuvers in context! Sure, yeah, pictures of majestic salmon dead on their sides. Whatever. Only dirty hippies care about that. The story doesn't end with the fish kill. Cheney set off a chain of things, and you know some of them and you can find where you read them and put them all in one place for your readers. So you, and by “you” I mean all of us, come home from your friends’ house at eleven and stay up until one, finding those things you remembered. You get up at five so you can write them up before your daylong meetings. Such a common story.

Then, on breaks during your daylong meeting, you sneak back to your blog and you find that someone has left a comment that manages to mis-read the words you thought you made clear, make ridiculous assertions, impute motives to you, insult your co-workers, insult you and compare you to the Third Reich. You fume all through your afternoon meeting, but check in to find that your beloved regulars are responding with thoughtful and considerate comments. You are inspired by their example and resolve to do the same. Later.

The fire from that comment lingers. With that energy behind you, you power through clothes shopping! cleaning the whole house! making dinner! painting your bike frame! watering everything! Sadly, by nine-thirty you are done. And you are still pissed. You shouldn’t start this. You are tired and concentrating is hard. You never actually took administrative law, so you’re going to have to understand the Hatch Act by yourself. You are inclined to say intemperate things, and those will get you linked by strangers who wonder how you can live with such anger in your soul. Wouldn’t it be better to make a gin and tonic, turn up some Eminem and dance it off? Yes. That would be better.

So you go to the fridge and you reach for the tonic. But there, next to the tonic, is that six-pack of WHUP-ASS you’ve been saving. You close the fridge door. Then you open that door again and you reach right past the tonic. You grab the first can of WHUP-ASS and you crack it and chug it standing there in front of the fridge. It tastes GOOD. You reach for a second can of WHUP-ASS and it is even colder and sharper and goes down so easy. You grab the third can of WHUP-ASS and open that one, too. You call Ali, to tell her to bring home another six-pack. Then you carry your third can of WHUP-ASS over to your keyboard and you start to type.


Anonymous HC said...

I had always thought you were supposed to open those cans on or at the target, rather than drinking them. Then again, I may have simply been too much of a pansy to apply them properly.

11:44 PM  
Blogger Megan said...

Hmmm. My sister's Ultimate team opens and chugs them on the line, then sprints down the field. I always thought of them as personal fuel.

11:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Given you are (?) Jewish by descent (and perhaps by faith?) then equating you to the 'Third Reich' is particularly egregious and offensive.

Which 6 million of your closest genetic relatives would that be forgetting, then?

I had a conversation with an op-ed writer, whose son was killed in Iraq, serving with the US forces. He had written pieces before (and after) that incident calling for a review of the US commitment in Iraq. He received numerous emails (from people he didn't know) calling him a 'traitor' and 'disloyal'.

Lets you know the sort of people we are dealing with.


3:12 AM  
Blogger Megan said...

By descent.

I'm trying to assume that the sort of people we are dealing with are occasionally thoughtless people.

9:16 AM  

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