Mary Beth Writes

3/29/2022

 The following is taken from this morning’s letter from Heather Cox Richardson. If you aren’t getting her letters, why not? She’s a historian and professor and is one of the smartest and most non-inflammatory voices right now. (Subscribe to her free newsletter at: https://heathercoxrichardson.substack.com/ )

United States District Judge David O. Carter of the US District Court for the Central District of California ordered John Eastman to disclose 101 documents to the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the U.S. Capitol. Judge Carter says, “Eastman and Trump launched a campaign to overturn a democratic election, an action unprecedented in American history. Their campaign was a coup in search of a legal theory…. If [the] plan had worked, it would have permanently ended the peaceful transition of power, undermining American democracy and the Constitution. If the country does not commit to investigating and pursuing accountability for those responsible, the Court fears January 6 will repeat itself.” 

And then this morning we learn: “Internal White House records from Jan show a gap in President Donald Trump’s phone logs of seven hours and 37 minutes, including the period when the building was being violently assaulted, according to documents obtained by The Washington Post and CBS News.”

Today would be a good day to email or call your reps to say that you fully support the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack. Because if we all write to all our reps they will have to deal with the reality I think many Republican representatives are assuming – that since we don’t say anything to them, we don’t care.

We came THIS CLOSE. There were dozens of planners, many enablers, and hundreds of followers who were ready to overthrow our democratic process.

That was crazy and we get to and need to say so.

If you are wondering about my heart, well, so am I. I thought Froedtert was the premier heart place in SE Wisconsin? I called again today and my nurse practitioner’s assistant called back to say she just called the lab where I sent the heart monitor.

She says the monitor is contracted from a company. They send the monitor to that company which then prints the info somehow and then sends that to the cardiology team at the big Froedtert central hospital. They look at it and then send it back to the local clinic to the patient’s medical care person. So, it takes a while.

What do you see here? I see a medical care system that has increased profitability by outsourcing a complicated set of information to a cheaper venue. I wonder if that company is in some other nation. I don’t know, I’m guessing. Then they send it to the central people who know what the score is and can select out patients who need immediate care and also who is likely to become a profitable patient. Cynical observation? Yes, but one wonders.

I understand that margins can be tight and providing health care has many places where an institution can’t be and do everything. But it's been three weeks and here we are. I have more questions about American health care than confidence in it.

Let’s talk about something easier.

How do we know it is Spring? A whole lot of the “Spring is busting out all over” observations are sentimental poppycock. Flowering trees, daffodils, birds and bunnies, windy days, and kites? Easter eggs and little kids in pastel clothes? It’s the end of March in Wisconsin and right now the windchill is 24 degrees.

Instead of just going with what they have told us is spring – WHAT IN YOUR PART OF THE WORLD TELLS YOU THAT IT IS NOW SPRING?

THIS: A couple days ago I woke to a persistent racket on the other side of our bedroom wall. The sound is of someone chipping at the wall with hammers. Once again, like each year we have lived here, birds are building nests at the crook of two walls. Where gutters meet there is snug place on the gutters, under the eaves where some local flutter-budgies tamp sticks into a nest.

I hear the hammering, I see little brown birds flitting past the window, and I know that once again in our gray urban neighborhood, it’s Spring.

THIS: Fresh asparagus at the grocery store. (I picked asparagus my first job out of college. Not kidding.)

THIS: The sound of Sandhill Cranes flying WAY overhead, going north to the Arctic.

 

What are signs of Spring where you live?

 

 

Comments

Thank you for the reminder to write our Representatives. Did it. So often we just sit with bated breath waiting for the outcome of these investigations, when we need to make our voice heard to take part in our democracy. Maybe if you elevate your voice a bit more - you can get the results of your Holter monitor test a bit faster. Squeaky wheel and all that. Spring always seems slow to arrive. But the squirrels are acting "squirrely", and the birds are building nests - it can't be long!
Mary Beth's picture

Thanks and yes, I think it must help somewhat to let ALL our reps know we are paying attention. We have squirrel who has, I fear, a broken shoulder. I think of her as female and have named her Clarissa in honor of the little girl in the wheelchair in the Heidi story. Clarissa grabs a seed or crumb, then flop on her side to eat it. I worry about her.

Contacting the Wildlife rehab center at the Wisconsin Humane society might give you some help in what to do for Clarissa. https://www.wihumane.org/services/wildlife-rehabilitation-center

Spring is busting out all over here in Middle Georgia. Dogwoods, irises and azaleas blooming, all the trees leafing out in myriad shades of green, birds nesting (we have a Carolina wren nest on our back porch, and she's sitting on eggs). I'm setting out my tomato and pepper plants this week, and the temperature will be in the mid 80's this afternoon. This is a bit warm for the time of year, but we have a lot of temperature swings in March. Nothing like your 24 degrees. Not since two weeks ago when we had a low of 20, the coldest morning of the winter.
Mary Beth's picture

That sounds like May here - and it sounds wonderful! Enjoy it for us! Len and I are just back from a short walk. Today it is misty moisty gray, about to rain, and 40. We will take it.
Leonard's picture

Looking at your picture, it looks like it would kill your back. There are people hard at work, as we speak, designing lasers to harvest asparagus. https://www.jstage.jst.go.jp/article/eaef/6/3/6_105/_pdf

Despite having written a poem about how the crocuses are in conflict with the biting wind on my neck, I know it's sitting because the birds who live in our back porch eaves have hit the best all built and are increasingly in a flurry. It makes a big mess (also included in the poem), but it does feel comforting to know that they're getting ready for something. I trust the birds. I suppose I trust the crocus too ... Did you know there was an ancient ritual involving crocus petals to invite the wind? Perhaps they aren't foes after all!
Mary Beth's picture

I didn't know about crocus petal rituals. Now I will have to look that up. Hmmm.

Add new comment

CAPTCHA

This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

Three Things / Story, Eclipse, Brando

1. I scheduled my Substack story to go out at 8AM this morning. I just looked to see why it didn’t show up and it says it is going to be sent at 8:49 tonight. I’m going to leave it like that. Maybe 9PM on a weekend night is a good time to send short fiction. Let me know if you have an opinion.

2. I read this quote by Marlon Brando who said this early in his career. “I’m not afraid of anything and I don’t love money.”

Even though this is probably not exactly true of me and you, I do love the bravado.

Peace Like a River / Book Report

4/3/2024 She Writes

I just finished reading Peace Like a River by Leif Enger and I am going to talk about it for a little bit before I forget how profoundly interesting and evocative this book was and is, at least to me.

I get emails from Boswell Bookstore (2559 N Downer Ave in Milwaukee). They host artist events pretty often and Monday evening, April 15th Len and I will be there for the Author Evening with Leif Enger. You can look up more of the details if you are interested. (Tickets are free but you need to reserve them.)

My Grandkids & 'Wandering Stars'

4/1/2024

The past month has been jam-packed. The week in Mineral Point. Len’s two-day seminar in Chicago. Last week we had various grandkids here for three overnighters and yesterday our family came to Easter dinner here in our house which was clean after a week with grandkid overnighters so you know that was a piece of cake. Len smoked two hams (yes, hard to keep them lit) and I made the largest amounts of from-scratch scalloped potatoes plus macaroni and cheese that I have ever made. As in, I grated four pounds of cheese Saturday afternoon. “On Wisconsin.”

Ghost on a Post / Poetry with Third Graders

3/12/2024

This is what I texted to Len this afternoon after I finished the poetry class with third graders. “I’m done and back. The kids were great and I’m a limp washrag, Teaching forty 8-year-olds for 90 minutes is way more energy than Everest.” I then drank half a beer (I NEVER drink in the afternoon) and fell asleep until the Mineral Point afternoon ‘change of shift siren’ shrieked for several minutes. It’s been a full day.

How 2 Write a Poem (3rd grade edition)

3/7/2024

Next week is my Writers Week at Shake Rag Alley in Mineral Point, WI. I won this when my story “How Crow Got Out of Jail” (Read Here) won first prize in the 2023 Wisconsin Writers Association Jade Ring contest for short fiction.

Winning that contest motivated me to open my Substack account. So far I’ve published 17 stories and only published once twice. (Who noticed that?)

Tag Cloud

9/11 17 minutes 500 Words A-Z AARPtaxes AAUW abortion Acadia accident Accountable Advent aging Alaska animals anniversary antibiotics antlers apples appointments Arrows art Ashland August Augustine aunts baby Badlands balance Baldwin Barbara Barkskins Beauty Becky Becoming Esther Berry birthday bistro BLM Blue BookReport books Boxing Day boy scout Bread breakfast BreakfastClub BrokenDays BuyAngry Cabeza de Vaca Cahokia calendars Canada canoe cat romance cats cello Chicago China Choosing Christmas cilantro Cinnabuns circus climate change clouds Clowns clutter Colonialism comet ComfortZone CommonSense community consumerism Cops Corvid-19 Courage Covid-19 Crazy creditreport creosote crime CrimeShows danger DarkRiver death Debate December DecisionFatigue decluttering deer democracy dentist depression Destination Today Detroit Didion disasterprep distraction dogs dollhouse Dreams Duty Easter eBay Echoes Eclipse election EmilyDickinson eschatology Esquipulas exit polls eyes Fable FairTrade family farmer Fata Morgana ferns firealarm Fitness Five Flatbread Flexible flu Food Pantry Fort de Chartres frame Franc FrancGarcia friends frugal FrugalHacks Frugality frustration Ft.Ticonderoga fungi fusion Galena Gannets Garden GarfieldParkConservatory Gaspe genius geode GeorgeFloyd gerrymandering ghosts gifts girls GNTL gorgons goulash GovernorThompsonStatePark Graduation grandkids granola Grief groceries Guadalupe Guatemala gum guns Hair happiness HaveYouEver? hawks healthcare Healthinsurance hearings heart heaven HelleKBerry heroes hike History home HomeRepair Honduras Hope HowCrowGotOutofJail humor hurricane Ice Cream idiosyncrasy igloos impeachment Innkeeper Instincts integrity InternetPrivacy Interview InviteMe2Speak James Baldwin Jan 6 Janus jewelry JoyceAndrews Judy JulianofNorwich Jump justice Karen kites ladder Lady Lamb LangstonHuges LaphamPeak laundry LeeLeeMcKnight lemming Len lies Light Lincoln Little Women LockedOut Loki loneliness LouisArmstrong Love Ludington Macaw macho Manitoulin MargaretFuller Maria Hamilton Marquette marriage Marsden Hartley masks Mayan MayaWorks meme Memories men Middlemarch MilesWallyDiego MindfulChickens MineralPoint Mistakes MLK moon Mother MothersDay mounds mouser movies museums must-haves Mustapha NAMI Nancy Drew Newfoundland New Mexico New York City Nomadland nope observation OBUUC Ocotillo OnaJudge ordinary OscarRomero osprey Outside oximeter Parade mayhem PastorBettyRendon Paul Hessert PDQ Penny persimmon photos Pi Pies pineapples pizza poetry Preaching privacy procrastination Protest QE2 Quern quest Questions Rabbit holes racism reading recipe recipes recommendations religion Remember RepresentationMatters Reruns responsetoKapenga Retirement rhubarb Ricky rime RitesofPassage romance Rosemary Ruether Roses Roti Ruth SamaritanWoman Sanctuary Sandhillcranes Santuario de Chimayo SaraKurtz SaraRodriguez satellites sci-fi ScottSimon sculpture Seasons Sermon ServantsoftheQuest sewing Shepherd Shontay ShortStory shoulder sick sickness Slower snow Social Security SofritoBandito solstice South Dakota SpaceShuttle spirituality spring square feet St. Louis staining stars stele Stereotypes stories StoryStarts stream monitoring stress SUBSTACK Survival swim Talent taxes teenager thankgsgiving Thanksgiving TheBridge TheMaid ThePerpetualYou therapy ThreeBillBoards Three Thing Three Things ThreeThings TidalBore TimeBeing toddler Tom tortillas Trains travel Traveler Tubing turtle Twilight Bark Tyrone Ukraine Ulysses Grant Umbrella UnrelatedObservations Up North urgency vacation vaccine Valentines vanilla Vietnam vision VivianWokeUpDrowning Vocabulary vole volunteer WalkingAndSeeing Wampanaog war WarsanShire weather weaving Webs wedding whines WhyAttendChurch Wiley Willa WillaCather Wisteria Won! Wonder words Xeriscape Yellowstone Zebra
Ad Promotion