First the news. I don't watch Big Brother; I didn't attend the baseball meeting; I'm not up on the latest brush fire; and Megan and I had a pleasant time buying her every food item she could possibly want for her visit and then some. We stayed away from candy, but we did buy a cake mix, premade icing and some horrible hot curly snack things. She was surprised when I kept saying yes to everything, so I felt compelled to tell her the story of when Adrienne had come to spend a few weeks with me when she was young. I bought her what ever she wanted to eat and then when Mom got there, she yelled at Adrienne for putting brand name cookies in the cart. The moral of the story I explained to Megan is that what's ok with Aunt Kathy should'n be confused with what might be ok with Mom. She nodded knowingly, either having understood me or simply humoring me after hearing me say blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, again. I do say that a lot.
I've said this to Steph and probably everyone else on the planet, but I remember firmly believing that I knew everything when I was nineteen. I guess I'm thinking about it a lot this year, because Steph is nineteen and I have all these teenagers living in my house who are fast approaching that age. I see that age as a watershed in my life, when I had a really big ego and got my head handed to me on a platter. I'm reading about Ben Franklin and I came accross an event in his life that summed it all up. He was a rising star in the community, well received by the dignitaries and he was visiting a respected, wise elder in the community. Walking through the house, the wise elder said (and in my mind, he comes off like Willie Wonka mumbling the warning) lower your head. Ben Franklin didn't understand him and he said it again, "Lower your head." Ben Franklin still didn't understand him and he hit his head on a low beam--really smacked it hard. He said that incident made him strive valiantly to be more humble for the rest of his life. [The biographer says he never quite pulled it off, but he sure did try.] So I read this and I thought about Martha Stewart, Bill Clinton and Michael Jackson. I am a big fan of all of these tall egos and I am happy to support their giant personas. I view the persecution of them by the media and zeolous procecuters as modern day witch hunts and I wonder at societies hunger for that kind of pursuit. I blame Big Brother and it's ilk for raising the entertainment bar for the evening news. But what about Paul McCartney. I have this image of him as always lowering his head when he talked to the media or appeared in public. He seemed reluctant to be the star of the group and always seemed to step back to share the spotlight. He's a humble, very rich, extremely talented, famous guy. When Linda died, there was a news story about six months later that he improperly moved her body. The sensational story lasted exactly one day. Martha, Bill, Michael take a lesson.