December 31, 2004


I've been kind of torn as to whether I should talk about the tsunami over here or not. Usually I like to keep myself on the level of Good-time Queenie - snarky, kind of an asshole, but deadpan honest and giggling all the way. That's not exactly the framework from which to address an Act of God on such a crippling, worldwide scale...not without coming across like a dickhead, anyway.

Be that as it may, I'm talking about it, because I just can't not talk about it. Yes, I'm one of those people who downloaded and watched all the videos they could find; I did so not out of some sick macabre fascination, believe it or not, but because I had no idea what a tsunami really consisted of. Oh, yeah, I knew it was a "wave"...but this...this is staggering, beyond my comprehension.

I've seen amateur footage from Sri Lanka, several videos from Phuket and environs, and one horrible, chilling snippet of film that claims to be from Banda Aceh. The sheer force of the water was devastating, the area so widespread as to boggle the mind. When I think of the earthquake that spawned such a massive sea-demon, all I can feel is awe that humanity even has a lexicon to accurately describe such chthonic destructiveness. Nine-point-oh. Holy Mother of God.

It makes you want to bang your head against a wall, doesn't it, seeing this big huge horrible thing that nobody can control, just riding rough-shod over life as we know it. It makes me want to bang my head against a wall, anyway. Those poor fucking people. Those poor sods. I can't just sit here and do nothing.

I'm not going to ape at this late date by linking all the various places that are accepting assistance on behalf of the survivors of this terrible tragedy, but I will send you directly to The Command Post for information on how to help, and I will most vehemently encourage you to give. Just a little something, man. We have so much, and there are literally millions of people out there right now that have absolutely nothing left.

I was in Target today, buying a new shower curtain and some towels. I struck up a conversation with Maxine, my checker, a West Indian lady with a glorious, resonant voice, reminiscent of a cello. She said that her sister lives in Paris and they had spoken several times in the last few days regarding the events in the Indian Ocean - it upset both of them, she said, and they just needed to talk about it. Maxine told me her sister had, at some point in their conversation, asked her, "Maxine - are you ready?"

Maxine looked into my eyes, through her plastic-rimmed specs. "Th' Bible seh He come like a thief in th' night," she said. "My sistah seh, all we can do is to be ready wit' Him. And do you know, I t'ink she right."

I think she's right, too. I mean, you just never know...this world is a crap shoot; that earthquake could just as easily have been on the New Madrid fault, up under us rednecks. Be ready, regardless of your creed, because there but for the grace of God go you and I. Be ready. And give.

Posted by Queenie at December 31, 2004 02:47 AM

Well said Queenie.

Posted by: annika at December 31, 2004 12:15 PM

The lady has the right bend on life. In the book "Little Big Man", the main character was always asked by his "grandfather", "what kind of day is it?"
The reply was, "it is a good day to die, grandfather."
Meaning his life was in order and if he went, no one would suffer.
THAT is the way to live.

Posted by: Wichi Dude at January 1, 2005 12:11 PM
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