Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Happy 5th of July!!

Yesterday was our Independence Day....a day of celebrating getting rid of those pesky Brits and commemorating it by eating too much, getting sunburned and blowing shit up. American traditions at their finest.

My personal memories of 4th of Juy's of years gone by are pretty much the same. I would get a skin searing sunburn that would leave me moving like a robot, unable to sleep, and vowing to never leave myself open to another one...yet doing it again the following year. Lessons are not always learned the hard way...or any way.

Another memory is of my mother sitting on the ground among a pile of fireworks and basically lighting and throwing them in various directions. Considering she was the first certified female blaster for the coal company she worked for back then...I wonder what they would have thought about her complete disregard for safety precautions...not to mention the precedent she was setting for her children regarding fireworks and safety?

One year my older sis got a very large chunk of her calf removed by daring to light a firecracker and dropping it into a coke bottle with every intention to be far enough away to escape the resulting explosion...unfortunately she did not consider that short fuses generally do not wait for you to place the bottle carefully down before turning and running for your life. The blood was impressive...so were her screams.

I remember the time I was cleaning my bedroom and suddenly smelled a burning odor. I looked around and saw an object on the floor and was reaching down to pick it up (thinking it was trash as I was in my cleaning mode) when it suddenly exploded a mere inch or so from my outstretched fingers. While my heart was debating whether or not it was going to continue beating and sustaining my young life...I heard my father and little sis out in the hallway laughing themselves to death. Apparently father had thrown the firecracker at me to scare me with the resulting boom...I wonder whose fault it would have been if I had actually managed to pick the darn thing up before it exploded?

One 4th my mother's company held a picnic for employees and families. My father declined to come, better for us, and I spent the day watching the effects when alcohol, fireworks, and insanity are mixed. I remember this particular picnic the most because our next door neighbor then, who also worked with my mother, got annoyed by something I did (he was drinking and I was playing horseshoes..I cannot remember what it was I did that irritated him...but being 13 who knows)..at any rate the end result was him giving me a full open handed slap across my face. (my jaw would hurt for 2 weeks after that) I ran to my mother sobbing and she did what she always did...covered up my abuse...only this time she hid it from my father..not for him. She assumed he would go after our neighbor...and she was probably right. While he felt he had every right in the world to abuse us....so help the man who thought the same.

Back to my epic sunburns as one in particular stands out. The last one I suffered through (before the one I got when Bahrain experienced a full scale blackout one summer...another story I may have told at some point on this blog) I was 14 and decided for some ungodly reason to wear a tank top for the very first time to the city picnic....sans sunscreen of any kind. (up to this point in time I was a t-shirt girl...never exposing anything more than my lower arms to the sun) My very white innocent skin on my shoulders, arms, chest, and back...were simply burnt to a crisp. For the next week I could barely move, sleep, eat,....move. I had huge blisters that looked disgusting and during one moment of sweet bliss lost in an exhausted cat nap...sitting up with pillows all around me...my mother took a needle and popped all the blisters. I woke up in a mess of blister fluid and more pain. Sweet.

Yesterday's 4th saw me pottering around my house...I didn't buy a single firework. I didn't go to the show (though I could see it out the window for the most part) and I didn't get a sunburn. Win! Just couldn't get into the whole Independence Day hype this time around...feeling rather jaded I'm thinking when I read how America is going down the toilet due to politicians intent on over zealously flushing the proverbial toilet again and again. I guess I didn't see the point of celebrating and forgetting for a moment that we are slowly (or not so slowly) losing our King of the Mountain (Superpower) status and the right to celebrate our so called freedoms, democracy, and 'don't you wish you were us" mentality.

Yeah...I'm jaded.


23 comments:

Lynn said...

Perhaps when you start feeling 'jaded' you can think back to life in Bahrain? And how are you managing to pay for those semesters in college? Could you have accomplished that in Bahrain?

Anonymous said...

if things are that bad ... take a very dull razor and slit your wrists .... *proudly waves an american flag*

ellenln

Anonymous said...

Ellenln,
u could go to jail cuz of what u wrote on Leeanns blog, i donno how serious u r or if ur realizing what ur hand typed, but if u dont like her blog dont read it, I think Leeann must sue u, if u really mean what u say,,, am a lawyer and can help her from this harassment.
Mariam

coolred38 said...

Wow Lynn...I figured I would see the words "if you dont like it then leave" somewhere in that comment. Are you saying I have no right to complain because I am benefiting in some way? I guess all the other disgruntled Americans who also think the state of our economy is fucked up should shut their mouths too? Whatever. You're a very black and white person....doesnt mean the rest of us have to be.

Anonymous...how fucked in the head must you be to leave a comment like that? I suggest you seek some psychiatric help as soon as possible...you seem on the edge of self harm and I would hate anything bad to happen to you.

Lynn said...

'I figured I would see the words "if you dont like it then leave" somewhere in that comment.'

Yet you didn't, did you? lol

But,seriously, I just don't understand why you would feel so jaded? Why should the 'state of the economy' make you not appreciate the 'so called freedoms'?

When I find something horrible in my life I am always able to find the hidden blessings or remember that there are others out there that have it worse than me. "I cried about not having shoes until I met the person with no feet" But my point was that you WERE the person without feet and now you have them and you want to kick the one that gave them to you?

By the way, I didn't attend any fireworks or let off any bottle rockets either but that does not mean that I don't appreciate the freedoms that I have.

coolred38 said...

Pretty damn sure I didnt mention not appreciating the freedoms I have..what the hell does that have to do with being jaded about the economy?

Lynn said...

'I guess I didn't see the point of celebrating and forgetting for a moment that we are slowly (or not so slowly) losing our King of the Mountain (Superpower) status and the right to celebrate our so called freedoms, democracy, and 'don't you wish you were us" mentality'

Perhaps you should have explained better? I didn't sound like a complaint about the economy to me. Usually when people use a phrase like 'so called' before something they are insinuating that they don't really have them. I guess I misunderstood.

But seriously, Why the hell should we care if we are a Superpower or not and what does that have to do with celebrating our freedom? Where in our Declaration of Independence did it say that we will be a Superpower? It isn't about the economy, stupid. LOL sorry, I couldn't resist.

coolred38 said...

There is a difference between appreciating the freedoms we have...and critisizing the ones we are losing thanks to fucking Republicans. I was commenting on the fact that we will not be able to wave that banner of freedom we love so much for much longer the way things are going...unless we stop the politicians who are losing sleep on finding new ways to take them away.

And our economy is tanked thanks to the wars we have been dragged into...which directly affect what freedoms we are losing one by one under the umbrella of Homeland Security blah blah blah.

But anyways Lynn...yeah you win. Im stupid. Whatever.

Lynn said...

Yay! I win!! Thanks. lol

janice said...

Republicans??????? I thought we elected a jackass this time around?

Nope, I was better off 2 years ago than I am today!

And, I haven't lost any freedoms. Not wanting to nit-pic, but I can't seem to identify those lost freedoms.

Funny, I don't see illegal aliens crashing the borders of any other nation like they do this country. Maybe "they" think we're awesome, I sure do.

I'm just sayin'

coolred38 said...

Janice...on his very worst day Obama could not touch Bush in the jackass sweepstakes. Not even a contest there.

And personally speaking..I am much better off than I was 2 years ago. Not even a contest there.

janice said...

CoolRed, it is not my intention to silence you or put you on the defensive. I certainly agree that your life and the lives of your children are much improved. The advances you all have made thus far surpass (from what you’ve relayed via your blog) your existence in Bahrain. The right to succeed, fail or merely survive can be found in America.
It’s our fundamental right to opine on the actions of the elected officials. And your opinion is as valid as mine.


That said I’m a wee bit disappointed in your “jaded” assessment. You seem to be going down a pessimistic road, no longer seeing the glass half full.

I have a question to ask, while working the night shift are you listening to Coast to Coast AM?

coolred38 said...

Janice...my jaded feeling has nothing to do with America or the American people...those are great far as Im concerned...but more with the politics this country is currently going through. I just find so much of it shameful and dishonest compared to what it could be and with how we trumpet our democracy etc. Just makes me sad to realize we could be so much better and we arent...its all just politics for most people.

I have never heard of Coast to Coast...what channel is it on?

janice said...

On the political wrangling we see going on, I agree. It is a diservice to the American people.

Coast to Coast Am is a sindicated show. It airs from about midnight to 6am. In Wyoming you can hear it on KTWO, KGAB, KODI, KIML, KUGR, KGST, KOWB, KROE and KWOR. Not sure which station you'd be able to pick up in Rock Springs.

coolred38 said...

KUGR is in our area so will check it out. Thanks for the heads up.

oby said...

I have to jump in here...

I love America. I love so much about it. I love the fact that anyone can make a business doing just about anything here. I love the fact that most people would cheer on the underdog who dragged himself across the finish line with nothing in his pocket but an idea and a burn in his heart to make it. I love the stories of people who came before me and had a million times more courage than i do and made this country what it is. I love the people (mostly) who are some of the most generous people financially in he world and give from the heart in so many disasters, many that don't have anything to do with us. I love that we are one of the most religious nations in the world and somehow and not without conflict or clash people can practice their faith and our SECULAR laws protect the right to have a god or not as one sees fit and all are protected equally. I love the fact that we can agree to disagree, call our President and idiot if we choose and criticize the hell out of the Government if we feel we need to...and take peaceful action to effect change. I love so many things about America. I think it is a wonderful country. But that doesn't prevent me from seeing its warts and problems and unfair politics. I gotta agree with Coolred...I too, am very disturbed by politics in the USA. It feels like we have stopped caring about the people and have created a little fiefdom where the Big power players are not even shy about hiding their bad behavior. It feels in many ways as if there is no honor any more, there is no sense of shame when bankers thumb their nose at the American people and know that they are untouchable. It bothers me greatly that a handful of people in Washington with very deep pockets are, IMO, robbing this country blind with no concern for the future generations. It isn't just an Obama thing and it isn't just a Bush thing. It feels like a handful of guys at the top who have decided that the American people don't matter, the American nation doesn't matter. All that matters is short term gain for a few. I am greatly worried about the economy and a citizenry who, until recently (and probably still do) live FAR above their means. Saving for something has no meaning anymore. I confess I am old enough to remember that behavior. Credit cards were not every where and they had to be paid at the end of the month.

Mostly I am pissed that this great country with so much potential for so many, is losing itself under a huge pile of debt and that China will likely own a huge chunk of the USA soon. And we are still arguing about how to fix that problem. If the Gov't can't get it's own house in order how do they expect the American people to do so?

Anyway...my 2 cents worth. Doesn't mean I don't love America...It is BECAUSE I love her I am so worried.

coolred38 said...

Oby...you said it perfectly. Thank you.

janice said...

Oby, I couldn't agree more. Well said.

oby said...

Colored & Janice

Thanks!

Susanne said...

Reading this post was painful! I am so sorry for your sunburns, your mom popping your blisters (!!!!!) and covering up abuse by your neighbors! >>>:-(

spicydish said...

Oby's comment: well said.

I have been reading your blog for a long time, held my breath when you were coming to America. You have grown and changed so much. What are you doing to do after you finish college? Put your stories together for a book? Become a journalist. Your writing is excellent and you certainly have enough material to write about.
My husband is from Pakistan, I am German, married for 51 years. I often wonder what would have happened to our lives if we had returned to his country.
Isn't America a great country? With all its faults and bad politicians it still has great opportunities and freedom.
I am keeping my eye on you, wishing you all the best...

Anonymous said...

I love the comment from Spicydish. All so true Coolred you are a winner. You have changed so much. Just look at your excellent writing now. You always had the stories. Go girl.

coolred38 said...

Sorry ladies...been so busy with life lately...completely forgot to check comments for awhile.

Spicy...thank you for the kind remarks. My 'book" is always on my "to do" list...one day I might get to it. Im glad you like what you read...that is certainly an ego booster.

Anon...thank you so much.