Russ Bickerstaff (Mar 20, 2017)

A lot has happened in twenty years.

I have a family now.

It’s a strange thing coming into a family.
Different people slide into it in different ways.
But we slid into it in kind of a traditional way.
There was my wife.
There was a birth.
Then another.
Now we’re a family.

Obviously a lot had happened in between all of that.
But it doesn’t really feel like it.
Like there are all these little events
that are little fictions that we all cling to in order to pass the time.
In actuality we’re all just children sitting there as bright, shiny things go by.
Which is precisely why it’s such a crushing thing to become a parent.
On a geological or astronomical time scale, we’re all roughly the same age.
Newborns. 100 year-olds. Everyone in between.
All roughly the same age.
We’re all children.
And so none of us are qualified to be parents.
Some of us arrived in the room a few seconds before some of the rest of us.
You walk into a room.
Someone hands you a job, a child and a beer and tells you to work it out.
We’re not qualified for this.

It was an afternoon.

There was this sister.
She had spoken to her sister about my wife who is also their sister.
Social shades cast across everything in just the right way.

My wife’s sister had said that she tried tried to call a representative.
Someone in government.
She wanted to say something to someone who may have been in someway responsible for making decisions that she don’t like.
So she made the call.
Now:
It’s awkward talking to a stranger.
It’s even more awkward talking into a stranger’s voicemail.
There was an awkwardness at the end of the message she left.
She felt bad about it.
But she knew that her sister who is my wife was doing this what of thing all the time.
A couple of times a day in fact.

The sister who had heard this for the first time from the sister who is the other sister of my wife thought about this.
She said: “that sounds about right.” I like that.
My wife is outspoken.
Her sisters know this. And now she has something to speak about.
In a big way.
She’s speaking into voicemails.
She’s speaking into recordings.
Her voice forms of words that are emissaries of uncertainty and frustration related to those people who really need to be serving us.
And really need to be serving us better.
It’s important. It needs to get said.
They need to listen to us.
They’ve been serving the money that wants nothing more than to be cozy with other money.
It wants to gather together and there are people who are stupid enough to think that keeping track of a lot of it makes them more important than other people.
This needs to stop. People need to start paying attention to each other.
People need to realize that the money doesn’t care.
Because it can’t care: it’s only money.

–Russ Bickerstaff
03/20/17

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