Tuesday, August 28, 2012

The Small Stuff

A few weeks ago my boss Randy Kemner wrote a small piece for the newsletter about the things we can control. It was just after that horrible shooting in a Colorado movie theater and how he and his wife spent the evening with their closest friends and while the sadness and shock of the moment were still with everyone, just how much joy they found being close to people they care about, sharing something they love, food and wine. Resonated with me on a level that is still working its way through my armor and many fibrous layers. He intended to make a point but I know for a fact he didn’t intend to send my head and heart reeling the way he did. First of all he already has me so tightly wound around his effusive and exuberant voice he didn’t need to write anything to make me swoon, he was just talking from the heart and sharing his real life dealing and the discovering of the sweetness of the moment. It touched me and made me stop, for days now, and think about the things that are close enough to actually affect me….evaluate the things that are merely just hanging out there in the maybe and someday. 

Been a political monster the past week. So wrapped up in the rhetoric and arguing, the kind that pulls my lips back hard against my gums and shows my true fangs. Fuck with my right to do with my body as I see fit, tell me that there are types of rape that are less egregious, or that some fairy dust fed part of my womb, that doesn’t exist will protect me from a legitimate rape….well, I’m going to get fierce, pissed off and will verbally rip the nut sack off any fucktard telling me they know better and that I should just trust them. These arguments are in fact worth my time, venom and rage. They will affect me and all the women that come after me. Didn’t fight this hard, for this long, knife against my flesh, bat to my jaw, face smashed against a brick wall, forcefully exposed chest rubbed raw and bleeding as someone’s idea of legitimacy was imposed upon me, just to have some bloated, rich white man tell me what I have the right to do with my body….what my granddaughters and great granddaughters can do with theirs. This fight is worth the time I’ve spent sending letters, stupid Facebook posting and vowing of my time to march, vote and share my story. I used to feel shame for what happed to me, over and over again, but now…the only thing I’m ashamed of is that this glorious country of ours would employ or vote in even one sick fuck of a human that thinks we as the “gentler sex” aren’t capable of making choices, no matter how horrid, for ourselves. I’ve got your gentle right here asshole, come see me….and you can bring another halfwit with you, let’s make it a fair fight.   

So yeah, been seriously involved and wrapped up on that front, and with good reason but when I’m quiet, when the laptop is off, when there isn’t some new asshat comment in my grill making me wonder, “If your daughter were raped by a black man would you be half as vehement?!” Randy’s sweet words of appreciation and rather grounded observation of what really matters slip in and awake my subconscious. Reminding me of what does in fact matter in the right here and now of my life, the things I don’t have to rage against…the things that bring me joy in the face of the ugly, hate filled and self-serving. I can fight for my rights, try and fight for those of other women too afraid, but the truth is, I have my own silly fears, still, that pale in comparison but still plague me, the same kind of “I know better than you” kind of bullshit and head patting that are dripping with lies and omissions…taking a moment to reflect and simmer in the beauty that has come from all I, we, struggled for, the small things that make the fight worth it? Can’t help but find a much needed expulsion of warm, tight chest filled breath and the spreading shoulders that come with it. I find myself sipping slow, taking long drags, on those things, people, moments that make all the fighting, shock, confusion and struggle seem like tiny bits of penance and horrific blood stained battles, pleads of “please don’t” feel like they are a million miles away…so long as there is this to keep me fighting, hoping and believing….

Teaching my son about wine. Figuring out what moves him, flips on those switches and gets that palate vibrating for more. Knowing that I have within my feeble knowledge, the tools to help him become a force to be reckoned with in our field. Empowerment..

My much adored summer tomato sandwich. White bread, Best Foods mayonnaise, sliced sweet summer tomatoes with a pinch of salt. There is not one other thing, not even the sound or smell of the ocean that can evoke as powerful an emotion. I shun tomatoes nearly all year because I need to preserve this glorious and head spinning bit of perfectness. 

The relief filled roar of laughter when I let an “F Bomb” drop in one of my classes. Wine people deemed stuffy and all, I let a passion filled “fuck” fly and the whole crowd laughs and feels more welcome. An early lesson that has served me well….

Finding a new issue of Saveur magazine in my mailbox. I rip off the plastic like it was goddamn Christmas morning, spending hours lost in words strung so beautifully together that they make me crave each and every single bit of food or place they are writing about. Letting my toes twist and head swim as I dream of writing for them someday…

Always feeling like the least attractive woman in any room but…having a suspicion that if I did my thing, let the true me out, I could captivate and seduce anyone I wanted. Probably total bullshit but it serves me well in bar situations and fuels my Dave Matthews fantasies.

Being able to make my beloved Ronnie, the coworker I adore, laugh his ass off on a daily basis. Don’t care if I have to make poop schedule comments, I crave his laughter and am willing to make an ass out of myself to get it. 

Reading the email I get here on this blog. Some of the things you people have shared with me take my breath away. I know why I do this but am rarely convinced that anyone cares…until you write me. Been humbled here more than I can tell you and just so you know….those moments are with me each and every single moment of every day. They make me stronger and encourage me to keep going forward….so this is entirely your fault. See what I did there?!

Reading the face of an ancient native American woman as she fed me Navajo fry bread when I was too young to truly understand. Each wrinkle in her tired and hard life upon me as my young teeth took bites of the most ethereally light and airy bit of dough I had ever known. A start…

How aroused I am when I feel the not used enough muscles in my forearms force an opener into a cork. Watching the bulge and twist of the strength beneath my skin, the way it gets all my other parts ready…drives me wild.

Writing a sentence that makes me think, “Damn”

Knowing I have been in the cellars of, tasted, more great wine than most of the wannabes that wax on and on and on about wine. Until you’ve had a revered Burgundian producer ask your birth year and run off to retrieve a bottle…shut up. I’m getting tired of trying to down play my experience and what I’ve tasted, been a part of…..time for me to embrace the good fortune that has been shed upon me thanks to the likes of Randy Kemner, Kermit Lynch and Michael Sullivan. I used to feel embarrassed but now, in the light of all these other “specialist” I think it is time to let those lips pull tight against my gums and call out the BS when I see it. 

Having one of the wees from next door run over, in his Paul Frank jammies, to bring me cash for the gift basket that we made for his grandma. Sweet big and wide open face full of a new day’s promise, big smile as he finds me in my jammies too. Not to mention coming home to find….

Feeling the strain of opening five cases of Champagne because 70 people just had to be at our Champagne and Fried Chicken event, in my wrists. I’ll twist away over and over again for those events…they “feed” me just as much as they fed those 70.

Making “that” face at my husband at least once a day for the reward of hearing, “Fuck, you are the sexiest woman, like ever”

My mother teaching me to really cook. How even something as simple as Egg in the Hole can be masterful when prepared with the right ingredients. 

Working retail which has taught me patience and appreciation on a level I couldn’t have expected.

Gratitude, for still being here considering some of the horribly misguided decisions that fueled my youth, stuck a snarl in my jaw, had me facing that brick wall questioning what got me there….

Knowing that there is a breath of fresh air and empowerment beneath the next cork and being ready to jump in.  

Drinking and feeling....truly lucky. 


Amy in Dallas said...

I'm here and listening. . .

Thomas said...

The difference between you and the politicians who make remarks like that idiot's rape remark is that they are single-minded slobs without redeeming value, without brain power, and without humanity.

You are quite the opposite of them.

Romes said...

That is all.
Always here silently stalking.

Ron Washam, HMW said...

My Gorgeous Samantha,

You know how you anxiously await a new issue of Saveur? That's how I feel when I see there's a new post on Saveur Sans Dosage.

I love you!

Samantha Dugan said...

Don't know what I would do if I didn't know you were there for me...cannot and will not even begin to imagine. I miss you!

Thank you sweet man. These guys are killing me this elections...war on women indeed. This one, she's taking up arms and fighting back.

Hell yeah RAWR, meows only go so far....

Saveur Sans Dosage? Hot damn, send me a link!! I love you.

webb said...

It's passion like yours that kept us finding ways to send young women out of state to get the services they needed, and kept us marching and marching and marching until the old white men finally listened and we got the right to control our bodies. Right? well, duh.

It's your passion for other things that brings me to your blog as often as possible. Thanks for being Sam.

Samantha Dugan said...

No, thank you lovely lady, for letting me be...well, me. Your support means more than you can know.

Ed Hodson said...

Thanks for reminding us that beauty is worth focusing on, and worth fighting for. And I can't possibly thank you enough for being so open, raw and real. I'm so grateful that you're in this world with us, Sam. Thank you so much.

Marcia Macomber said...

Love this post!

Oh, those damn idiots from the Far Right who continue to squawk about so many things for which a) they have no business sticking their noses into; b) they continue to astonish in their lack of understanding facts and science; and c)they lack any sense of humanity or compassion. Makes your blood boil!

Unfortunately, I actually have a few family members and friends from Near to Far Right, so I hold my tongue to a degree on Facebook....

Love your line about the taught muscles in the arm while turning a corkscrew.... Very nice!

Samantha Dugan said...

Your comment made my morning when I saw it over on Facebook, so kind of you to share them here as well. You and your support of both me and my departments never ceases to amaze me...thank you much dear friend.

Oh trust me, I know I will probably lose a few readers with this one but I can't keep quiet on this, nor can I spend too much time caring about someone else's feelings when they don't consider me or my gender fit to make our own choices about our bodies. I have friends and family on both sides of the political fence, so I do watch some of the stuff I shout about but this, not a chance.

gabe said...

Great blog, both humble and proud at the same time. Really well written.

I have respect for all political views, but I can't help but mention that the right wing has not just declared a war on women, but has declared war on women, muslims, gays, mexicans, and probably a few I've forgotten. As a jewish son of immigrants, I might not be in the crosshairs right now, but I know enough history to fight alongside any minority being targeted by the privliged and powerful. Keep that in mind if the war on women subsides.

Samantha Dugan said...

You are looking, erm, reading words written by a big old liberal. Have been my whole life but have learned over time to not scream as loud and work hard, silently behind the scenes. However I have been able to convince my in-laws that the couple we went to Memphis to be a part of their wedding, (and what kind of shit is that?! Spent my whole life is LA and the first gay wedding I go to is in the south?!) were not a treat to their marriage and being the mother of a not mixed looking black son has given me the opportunity to enlighten lots of people, so I've been very lucky. The batshit crazy fucks leading the GOP right now....scare the peejeebers out of me. I have to wonder where the hell the "I'm a fiscal conservative but a social liberal" folks are? How they can possibly vote party, ie money, over human rights?! Baffles the crap out of me...and makes me hopeful that this wing of crazy right wing breaks apart the party.

Yikes, ranted a bit...sorry. As always I thank you for your input, and the kind words about this here silly post!

Sara Louise said...

If Akin gets elected, I don't think I will ever move back to the US.

Anonymous said...

First post here have read your blog for the first time 2 months ago...really amazing and one of the few I read every day.

Today's post just shows why. Thank you for all your hard work.


Samantha Dugan said...

Right?! Some scary shit right there.

Awe, you made me puddle. Thank you so much for taking the time to read and post, means so much.