There is too much news for an update, and I am too sick to do more than talk about how sick I am (but you should see my swollen nodes, it’s a freakshow in here, seriously); and to grouse, in the crotchety fashion of the bedridden.  Normally, I am Pollyanna as hell, and the morale officer for many minor armies, but my illness and fatigue prompt me to write about how sick and tired I am.  I rant here that I may smile silently at the nuttiness on my FB f-list.  Besides, this un-blog exists for me to vent my spleen; it’s right there on the label.

Irking me lately, and to varying degrees:

Michael Jackson fans.  It might just be the luck of the draw, but the adulation is peaking (I hope we’ve passed the peak, but I’ve been hoping that and it just keeps growing) in certain of my circles.  For the record, I loved the Jackson 5 as a kid, and loved Michael’s solo work through the disco years and the pop years.  Things changed, as did Michael.  I don’t care about the weird personal habits, and I feel sad his isolation prevented him from getting help for his Peter Pan syndrome, but his wrongness about little kids crossed the line forever.  People getting hysterical for the child-Michael or the young-adult-Michael might have been normal fanboy behavior at the time, but I don’t understand the current degree of mania for a guy who hasn’t cut a decent track for three hundred years or so.

The extreme degree of beyond-Beatles mania, instead of pity or disdain, for a mentally ill / physically broken / drug-and-surgery-addicted pervert gets under my skin.

Joe Paterno fans.  The desperate defenders of heroes make me sad for about a nanosecond, thinking that they are suffering the loss of a dear illusion.  Denial is the first stage of any paradigm shift, and I’m still waiting for a bunch of people to get beyond it.  I know so many people, however, who never moved beyond it with the Catholic church’s protection of child molesters (even some deeply lapsed Catholics I know believe the entire thing is hoax to get money) that I know there is no guarantee Joe Pa’s followers will ever admit that, when a trusted friend calls you with an eyewitness account of the sexual assault of a child, the main sort of acceptable response is, “Have you called the cops yet?  I have their number right here,” rather than, “Let me handle this.  I will bring it to the attention of school administrators who have a huge stake in covering it up.”

Every time I read a Penn Stater or abuse denier or Joe fan ranting about how this whole thing is a buncha BeeEss by lesser men (that is a quote) to tear a god down to their level, a handful of my brain cells leap out of my ear, screaming all the way down.

Early Christmas foes.  Like most people, I have been jarred and scarred by Christmas music playing while I shop for Halloween costumes and Thanksgiving decor.  (I’m not a holiday freak, but I have a major weakness for dried wheat, corn, and gourds.  Don’t ask me why.  I certainly wasn’t brought up this way.)  But the bitching about it has gone to an entirely new extreme this year.  Though I don’t want to tangle with people on this, I wish they would remember:  WE ARE IN A DEPRESSION.  Tune them out, but wish them well; some people will be getting by on part-time retail jobs in the coming weeks.

Many retailers rely on the money earned during the Christmas shopping season to sustain them through the rest of the year. Given how rotten the economy is, it’s a wonder “Jingle Bells” hasn’t been made the official theme song of Labor Day.

Snark, generally; grammar snark particularly.  I love the English language, and the intricacies of grammar and semantics fascinate me.  And while snark can be hilarious, and merited when used against the oafs (oaves? ha) of the world, I am appalled when someone openly sneers at someone else.  Especially for poor language use!  You wouldn’t (I hope you wouldn’t) sneer at a poor person’s shoddy clothes; why do some think it acceptable to sneer at a poverty of language skill?  I always feel like intervening.  No one’s grammar is without flaw, not even Her Royal Highness, and believe me, Sister, you are not the Queen of England.  Publicly snotting people, especially for offenses against manners rather than ethics, is unacceptable.  I am a girl who wants to know if I am showing the ass, and invite my friends to correct me at all times.  But doing so ungently and without an invitation is simply a way to score points for yourself at the cost of humiliating another.  Yes, it grinds my gears when people make gross errors, but grace is more important than grammar.

Which brings me to my last bark for now:  shit disturbers.  Spreaders of dissent.  Those who mock and whisper and divide.  And, worst of all, those who do so by lying.  The truth is usually sufficiently bad, but tell a lie often, and stick to it, and it will become the accepted version, the conventional wisdom.  I’m against that.  Know the truth, and know your position on it, but don’t pretend your opinion is fact.  And don’t spread lies.  I shouldn’t have to insist, but I must.

Part of being a fan of the truth is not giving front page, above-the-fold coverage to lies.  But once again, I have found out that I have missed out on interesting friendship, one that might have been important, because of deliberate lies told to me by someone I (used to) trust.  This predates my decision to stop taking even dear friends’ statements as fact, keeping in mind that there is more than one perspective to every story.  Beyond that, I don’t know what lesson to learn from the experience.  The first few times it happened hammered things home quite nicely, but even ten years after I cut this person out of my life, I’m discovering damage wrought quietly while we were, supposedly, still the best of friends.  Sorry for the pronouns without referents, it’s a rotten way to write, but any details would be too many.  (See the first sentence in the paragraph.)  But this new discovery is burning me, so it has to be mentioned.

The short form:  I have no time for whispers.  Don’t say anything to me about another person unless you’d say it with her standing next to me to hear it herself. Believe me, I’d do the same for you.

Here endeth the rant.