Another Difficult Phone Call to Make

lr9.jpg Once again, I really thought this book was going to be a snap compared to my book about unsolved murders. I’m working on a small passage about a letter to the editor of Life Magazine that Rhine wrote in 1957, right after pictures of the Little Rock Nine appeared in the magazine. (The Governor had brought in the National Guard to block de-segregation, and prevent nine black students from entering Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas.)

Rhine wrote a moving letter, and most people responded positively, but one person in Georgia wrote to say that the word “nigger” wasn’t so bad, and scoffed at what he called Rhine’s “emotional tizzy,” and said, “… there’s a good chance, actors that children are, they maybe [sic] enjoying their roles … As a psychologist, Dr. Rhine should be interested in the white children, particularly girls, with a deep seated (and justly so as Mississippi and other cases prove) fear of integrated rape, forced a bayonetpoint to closely associate with negro boys. Are not their souls scarred?”

Was he referring to Emmett Till, the 14-year-old who was murdered in 1955 because he whistled at a white woman?

I looked the person up, and sure enough, he’s still living in Georgia. I want to call him, to ask him to comment on this letter. Perhaps he might welcome the chance to take these words back, but I might get an equally ugly response, 49 years later. Ugh, ugh, ugh.

But I should call him, right?

I Love Awards Shows

globes.jpg I’ve got my usual awards show dinner lined up: potato chips and onion dip. I’m set. This year I actually know someone who is nominated, and for a big one! We’re not good friends or anything, only acquaintences, and barely acquainted, haven’t seen him in years, but still. It will make it more fun. He was nice and I will have someone to root for.

Okay, back to Bridey Murphy research. Although it’s not as interesting as I originally thought. I think I will only include a couple of paragraphs about it. Does anyone know this story? A woman in Colorado was hypnotized in 1952 and a past life came forth, a woman named Bridey Murphy who had lived died in Ireland.

Movie Music

junebug.jpg I love when I find new music in movies (new to me, that is). This is a scene from the movie, Junebug, which, by the way, is a sweet movie, worth seeing. They’re singing a hymn called “Softly and Tenderly.” It’s an incredibly beautiful little song. I downloaded a bunch of versions, but my favorite is by someone named Josh Turner.

I also watched Remains of the Day for the billionth time. That movie is like my theme movie. After, I downloaded the Schubert song that was sung by the German woman, (a Nazi–not the song’s fault) “Sei mir Gegrusst.” I don’t know what the words mean. Schubert wrote so many beautiful songs. Song is probably not the right word.

So, this week I went to a couple of parties and discovered that I have lost any gift for smalltalk I might have had. It was excruciatingly awkward for me (although I had fun talking to Teresa at both, and her son Andrew who came to the second). But what an ego pounding. At the first one, it was loud and crowded and everyone knew each other, the kind of situation that I find just impossible. The second was less crowded, but also loud, people standing around in small, tight clusters. Who is good at negotiating that?? Still, I’m happy that Steven invited me to both. Not his fault I clammed up.

Worship the Belly

Finney: Oh? Was this your seat? [Pausing the self-cleaning process.]

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Finney: Well it’s MINES now. (Actually, he was just yawning.)

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I’m backing up my computer right now, as I type. I wrote this morning, went to the gym, sent tax stuff to my accountant, found ways to cut corners this year, and I’m feeling virtuous, on top of things and in charge of my life. Clearly the universe is winding up to throw me my next curve ball. That sounds so pessimistic, I know. But in reality I’m a realistic optimist. The world sucks, but I will manage to have a decent time anyway.