awfulhorrid: (Caffeine Molecule)
I just returned home from a trip to North Carolina to visit family. This is the first time I've done that by myself in more than ten years and I promise it will be the last. Frankly I just can't take visiting there anymore without someone from the civilized world to ground me. I understand that NC isn't the worst of the Southern states, but visiting there is very much like stepping back in time several decades. More aptly, it's like visiting another country.

This is more or less how I survived the trip without screaming at people or just saying "fuck this" and packing up and leaving. After a few days, I finally decided that the best way to handle the situation is to think of the South as if they'd managed to secede back in 1861. I wasn't visiting the Southern states of the United States of America, I was visiting the Confederate States of America! That made things so much more understandable. The cultural differences suddenly made a lot more sense, as does the language differences, the shoddy education standards, the failure to understand some common facts about the United States ... even the relative technological failings, differences in laws(*) and customs. If we figure the CSA as teetering on the brink of being a third world country (as evidenced by the poverty and unemployment rate) much of the rampant social injustice and backwards social norms which often accompanies this state is explained quite nicely.

This view isn't perfect, of course. Many of the things associated with travel to an actual foreign nation aren't there - currency differences, passports, an actual separate government, and other things. Of course there are plenty of countries where you can freely spend US dollars without conversion and you didn't need a passport when visiting Canada until fairly recently. The most glaring problem with this idea is, unfortunately, that the CSA gets to vote in our elections and has many painful candidates running for office at this very moment. I guess I should just be thankful that it was so easy to immigrate out of there when I did!

--

OK look, I love my family there; I really do. I am just very much aware of the fact that NC is no longer my home and hasn't been in many decades. My mother simply cannot grasp this and therefore I cringed every time she said something about me being 'home.' Of course I also cringed every time she spouted forth with her increasingly racist language, something else she seemed incapable of grasping.



(* - Apparently there is a state law that televisions much be turned on anytime someone is in the same room with one.)
awfulhorrid: (Worship the Coffee)
Edit: Original subject line was Stop digging to China Australia! ... but then I noticed that subject lines don't support the strike through tag.

The other day Lorenzo was participating in one of his hobbies, namely digging wildly in the downstairs litter box. I made the off hand comment "Lorenzo stop digging like that; you don't speak Chinese!" (Or words approximate to this, at least.)

Of course I spend a lot of time playing with world maps and have a fairly good grasp of geography. I immediately realized that even if my lovely feline could dig that far he wouldn't come out in China since China isn't an antipodal point from our location. I wondered briefly where exactly he would come out, but aside from estimating somewhere in the South Pacific, I didn't follow up on it at the time. Today, I fired up Google Earth and entered an inverse of our geographic coordinates to see where he'd end up. As it turns out, I was off by a bit. He wouldn't end up in the South Pacific, but rather the Indian Ocean, almost in the Southern Ocean. Specifically he'd end up between the South West coast of Australia and the French Southern & Antarctic Lands. Allowing some drift towards a large land mass, I'll allow that he might end up in Perth, Australia. While I do have a friend that lives in Perth, I'd rather not call her to ask her to send back my cat.

How about "Lorenzo! Stop that digging, you don't need a kangaroo!"
awfulhorrid: (Love my coffee)
Hey, I said I'd post about this, didn't I? I got home on Saturday; how did it get to be Thursday Friday the next week already? It's also apparent that Spring has finally kicked in, but I'm sure not complaining about that.

As I said, [livejournal.com profile] tarrestrial and I took a trip to New Orleans with some of her family. As we rode in the back of her Dad's SUV across the approximately 922 miles between her house and the Quarter House (the resort where we stayed) it really struck me that we need teleporters, a fact I've mentioned elsewhere in my LJ, I'm sure. That and the fact that I really don't feel welcomed in either Mississippi nor most of Missouri and would just as soon not spend any money or time there as a result.

After 16 hours in the car, not counting rest stops, food, or the overnight in a hotel, we arrived in New Orleans!

Contains: Work Safe Pictures )
awfulhorrid: (Love my coffee)
OK, I'm back home from New Orleans! I had a great time, which I'll post about in more detail later. Right now: did I miss anything important? Assume that I haven't read LJ for most of a week because I haven't.
awfulhorrid: (Worship the Coffee)
I'm on the way home after visiting [livejournal.com profile] isolde_deely for a week. (Details to follow.) Currently I'm stopped for lunch at a truck stop in Seymour, Indiana. The internet connection here sucks!

Time to get on the road again. At least I've got a lot of cool podcasts to which I can listen!

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