Today I edited the first chapter of the Way of Attrition (my novel). Incidentally, while I think it’s a cool name that fits, I’m undecided. A different name may fit better.
I hadn’t seen Ianta in hours but she was quick to pop up when I got to work.
I’m upset by the admittedly not at all surprising confirmation of Kavanaugh. The FBI investigation was so short I can’t be expected to take it seriously. Regardless of the rape allegations,
- The absolute refusal of the Republicans in Congress to do their jobs and consider Obama’s nomination, claiming the voters needed to have a voice,
- The way in which the Republicans changed the Senate voting rules for confirming Supreme Court nominees, robbing the party not in power of its voice,
- And the Republican rush to confirm someone new before the voters could have a voice through the midterm elections,
makes the Supreme Court nominations a sore spot for me. Quite honestly, I find the above three decisions disgusting when viewed together.
When you add that Kavanaugh’s partisan rant against Democrats, the Clintons, the media, and the left should have disqualified him from serving on the Supreme Court, which is supposed to be the opposite of partisan, it’s more upsetting.
Then, of course, we have the rape allegations. Let me outline what I saw as the reality of the situation prior to today’s confirmation:
A) If the allegations are correct then, worst case scenario, a rapist is appointed to the Supreme Court, one who will be a deciding vote, likely on issues that impact women, women’s health, and women’s reproductive rights.
B) If the allegations are false then, worst case scenario, Kavanaugh does not get promoted to the Supreme Court and continues to serve as judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. That’s a good job, and one I don’t think he was ever in any danger of losing, as I don’t think he was ever in danger of facing criminal charges. Keeping that job isn’t a punishment. Serving on the Supreme Court is a privilege, not a basic right. Not getting that promotion isn’t the same as being unjustly convicted and sent to jail in the absence of proof.
A is a far more concerning scenario than B. Now that he’s been confirmed, well… Do I hope that Dr. Christine Blasey Ford was lying and that we don’t have a rapist on the Supreme Court? But I can never hope that a woman is lying about rape. Women should never lie about rape. To me, lying about rape is a betrayal of women, who always go through hell if they come forward about a rape.
I fear for the future of Roe v. Wade and gay marriage. This has been my biggest fear since I first thought that Trump had a chance of winning the 2016 election – an uncontested conservative majority Supreme Court that could slowly dismantle the rights of women and minorities.
Anyway. I hadn’t planned on these kinds of rants when I started this blog but it’s what’s on my mind.
What I’m posting today is a scene that doesn’t exist as part of a larger work, and maybe never will. I wrote it on 7/2/2016:
“My father isn’t dead, and he’s not a brewer. I’m sorry I lied to you. It felt like less of a lie at the time because not ever being able to see him again, or knowing if he was alive to see, he may as well have been dead. I’m sorry.”
Talia says nothing, just watches.
“He’s a painter. Not like the painters you have here, but one of pigment and magic. His pieces look different to each person who sees them. I brought you one.”
Vincent unwraps the package he’s carrying, turns a finely framed piece of canvassed art around to face Talia. Talia’s gaze is on Vincent’s face, which she looks at for a long time before lowering it to the artwork. The transformation in the queen’s eyes is remarkable. They widen, fill with awe, with disbelief, with a faint sheen of tears.
“I’m glad you think so. It’s called Ephemeral. It’s all curves when I look at it. Bright colors dancing with black, a shimmering array of things that pass too quickly to be identified.”
“It’s…” Talia shakes her head. “There are curves, turning into sharp angles, things shifting like wind, but beneath that there’s an image – a butterfly, with colors of the sun.”
Vincent smiles. “I know you won’t be able to display it anywhere public, but I hope you can find a place for it.”
Talia takes the piece, sets in carefully on her desk. “Thank you.”
“I didn’t…expect you,” Talia admits.
“Your performance is tonight, isn’t it?”
“Shall we practice, then? I’ve reviewed it. There are some tricky notes, but you’ll do splendid.”
“So you plan to stay, then, in…this world?”
“Stay? Not precisely. I’ll keep the office, keep seeing students, but I’ll go home at night. To my parents’ cottage for now, but someday a place of my own. I’d sell the flat but I have to be thought to live somewhere or it would be…odd.”
“I had thought to not see you again, now that you can go home.”
“My commitments are important to me, Talia.” Vincent pauses. “My friends as well. I understand if you don’t want to continue working together, but for my part I hope we can. I enjoy it.” He smiles ruefully. “I’m of no lower birth than before, just…different than I could tell you.”
Talia frowns, opens her mouth, fights her clenching jaw to speak. “You’re not of…low birth.”
“That’s gratifying to hear. No objections to continuing to work with me, then?”
“That’s more gratifying to hear. Let’s practice.”