Thursday, June 21, 2007

nothing really

Yet another weekend plus full of me not writing. The Saturday and Sunday parts of me not writing are easily explained with two words, roller derby. We had a meet and greet cookout Saturday night to welcome the skaters from Birmingham, and Sunday was bout day and early to the rink after rushing to get the boys to the babysitter followed by much too late of a night at the after party.

Friday was out because I spent a good portion of it with some guy jabbing inky needles into my arm. My arm stayed stiff for most of the rest of the day from the odd position, and the skin is slowly growing less and less tender. Thankfully Momma found my tube of Aquaphor in the place we'd both looked at least once each.

She is now going to fetch the boys. She also needs a bath, and I need to figure out something to cook for supper. I'm really not feeling the cooking. The actual bout last night left me feeling almost deflated. I feel like kind of a dork for even thinking like this. I was not one of those girls hitting and getting hit. All I did was stand on a box and holler about things and get sweaty hugs from awesome girls. But I still feel a tiny bit drained. I'd almost rather have the bangs and bashes, but there isn't enough duct tape to convince them I'm a girl.

I'm quite likely going to ignore a large portion of dirty house today. It's been begging for attention and is now screaming for cleaning. Along with not posting, I've spent the weekend letting things pile up in Bloglines, so I have a fair amount of reading and catching up to do as well. Right now, I just need a smoke.

Bonnie and Clyde

My most recent post, concerning a certain fellow who continues to question without the benefit of listening, has drawn more comments to a single post than I've ever had. One commenter mentions my picture of Bonnie Parker, and another commenter, from Europe, is at first unaware of who Bonnie and Clyde were. Upon learning about them, she asks, "Why are these people a hero? Is it possible I can never understand completely the American sensitivity?"

I love that question, but I'm afraid I may not really be able to answer it.

As Americans, we do seem to cheer for the bad guy, often seeming to develop a sort of Robin Hood view of some of our worse societal elements.

It's true that Bonnie and Clyde were murderers and robbers. It also has to be understood that their heyday was during the American Great Depression. This was a time when the gangsters ruled the street, prohibition was in full swing, and Americans thrilled to the exploits of those daring rogues.

In a sense, we seem to have always been a people that loved the outlaw side. Our nation was founded by people who could, in a sense, be considered outlaws, bucking the system of laws that were in place from the King of England who was in fact the ruler of the colonies as they then existed. It was not until several of our founding fathers turned outlaw and bucked the system that we eventually became our own nation.

Looking at our founding as a nation, it's not a large leap to see ourselves in love with the rogues. We still do that to this day, the dark and troubled hero being more popular than the shining example, uncertain motivation and a sense of brooding being more popular than purity of desire.

One can also look to our fixation with the old west, the cowboys that we imagine stepped out of bed in the morning directly into a pair of boots and a gun belt. We don't love a John Wayne that always did right but the John Wayne that swaggered in, fists or guns blazing, whichever seems appropriate to the situation.

So why do we so often idolize the scoundrels? Is this only the US, or is it a human thing?

I think as a final thought we should examine the double standard of this view. While we may romanticize Bonnie and Clyde, we certainly would not look forward to being the bank teller the day they showed up. Many people are currently fixated by the idea of some cutesy piracy that completely ignores the truth of the men and women who we celebrate. We overlook the murder and the deprivation, the added shares from the prize for those sailors unfortunate enough to lose a limb or an eye. We ignore the fact of entire ship's worth of people being drowned rather than being allowed to become a burden to the crew who were after more prizes, more robbing, raping and looting.

So what's your idea? Why do we celebrate the rogues and scoundrels, the Bonnies and Clydes?