So, I have a lot to report here, actually. Let’s see if I can remember all of it…
First of all, I didn’t win the 3-day novella event. However, I made the top 10. But keep in mind that only fifteen people total entered. So, that’s the top 2/3, but geez. Then the top four were announced, and I wasn’t among them.
I don’t think I’ll keep participating in the 3-day novella event. It overtaxes my brain and leads to a certain amount of braindeath. It’s just not for me.
In other news, I’ve been studying the plight of the female gymnast for reasons that must make sense to me on some level. I’ve been watching gymnastics from 1992 on YouTube. The whole idea was that I mostly missed the Olympics that year due to travel, and I figured now would be a good time to get caught up since there are no Olympics this year. I’m an ardent fan of the Olympics. So I’ve been watching the American trials where the top X number of gymnasts are selected to go to the notorious ranch led by Bela and Marta Karolyi.
Times have changed. Today, we all know how evil the Karolyis are. Back then, it was brushed over and ignored in the name of winning events. I’ve read some articles, and the Karolyis have reportedly underfed their gymnasts, punished them harshly for sneaking food or for not working hard enough, and called them fat. Bela grabbed one young woman’s behind and told her to lose that body part. The gymnasts were also beaten, and when I read about that last night, I was triggered (you had to see that coming–of course I was triggered).
One gymnast, Dominique Moceanu, was threatened whenever she didn’t work hard enough, or this one time when her aunt hid some candy in a teddy bear and it was found. Bela Karolyi would threaten to tell her dad, who everyone knew would beat her. And yet back in the timeframe of 1992, there were all these sappy video montages made of Dominique with Bela in which the narrator spoke of how he’d taken her under his wing and wanted to nurture her into a beautiful gymnast. And there would be images of them sitting on a swing together as the sun set behind them. That would seem so wholesome if it were a realistic portrayal of anything.
And that doesn’t tap the surface of the sexual abuse involving Dr. Larry Nassar, who easily groomed hundreds of elite gymnasts by sympathizing with them and being the good guy they could all turn to after being physically and emotionally abused by the Karolyis.
Why does life have to be so awful? Why can’t something like gymnastics be a friendly competition? It hardly seems worth it to win gold medals if you’ve experienced the trifecta of abuse. The young ladies who work that hard don’t remotely deserve any of that crap. And none of them could ever speak up for fear of being cut from the team and not making it to the Olympics. (That did actually happen to one of the first, if not the first, young woman who accused Nassar.)
It all seems like needless tragedy, and it all makes me sad. Call me wrong if you want, but I want to sit back and watch the Karolyis get whatever’s coming to them. They’re in deep shit as we speak, so here’s hoping. Moceanu wrote a memoir, and I want to read it.
In other news, today I took my mom to the dentist and the fruit market. Before you can say, “Meg, don’t go,” well, I went. Things went okay at the dentist’s because they didn’t even let me in due to coronavirus. When they returned my mom to me in the parking lot, problems began. “So, how’s your dad doing?” she asked as she walked over to her car door.
“Don’t ask me about that,” I said. “Just focus on getting into the car safely without bumping your head.”
“Oh, you’re right. I keep forgetting to get in slowly, don’t I?”
“Yes, you do, and I’m onto it. Now, in you go safely.”
So then I got into the car and we drove to the fruit market. I parked and we walked in, and I left my mom in the doorway (with sliding doors) so I could go to the other entrance and fetch a cart. My mom likes to use a cart as a walker.
So as I was maneuvering past people, I heard this: “WAAAAAA!”
Damn. I was pretty sure I’d get in trouble with someone if I didn’t rescue my mom from whatever ailed her. Still without a cart, I turned and retraced my steps. I found my mom somehow stuck in the sliding doors, wailing like a banshee as the doors tried to crush her weak frame and thankfully failed. I grabbed her hand and pulled her to safety. She was grateful. [Eyeroll.] Her gratitude feels saptastic to me. Yuck.
So then we quickly found all the fruits and vegetables she wanted. I grabbed some cookies and put them in the cart. “Did you get those?” she asked me.
“Oh, my beautiful daughter! You mischievous little tree sprite! LISTEN UP, EVERYONE, MY DAUGHTER, WHO TAKES SUCH GOOD CARE OF ME, PUT COOKIES IN THE CART. ISN’T THAT JUST THE CUTEST THING? OH, I COULD PINCH YOUR CHEEK, YOU DARLING GIRL.”
The cookies went back on the shelf. I decided they weren’t worth the humiliation.
She couldn’t figure out how to use the ordering station for dinner food, and I wasn’t about to try to master it, since I never use it, so I left her to her own devices and perused the Christmas tree ornaments. After about twenty minutes of agony, she had her dinner food, so we headed toward the cash registers.
“Don’t run into that person,” I said, when she had her cart about two inches (without slowing) from the person ahead of us in line. Naturally, the woman turned, and a huge dialogue commenced.
“MY DAUGHTER HELPS ME SO MUCH! WHAT WOULD I DO WITHOUT HER? I’M SORRY I ALMOST RAN INTO YOU. EVER SINCE MY STROKE, I’VE BEEN HELPLESS AND FEEBLE.”
Blah, blah, blah, whatever. She’s always been this way.
When she couldn’t figure out how to slide her credit card into the slot, that whole monologue got repeated for the cashiers’ benefit. Then we left the store, and my mom lost control of the cart. “WAAAAA! MY CART, MY CART! DON’T LET IT GET AWAY!” It was an inch ahead of her and going for two inches.
“Where would it go, woman? Is it going to grow legs and take off?” I grabbed it and held it, and the moment passed without tears.
Then we reached my car, and she wanted to help load the groceries. I told her she wasn’t allowed, and that her only job was to get into the car without hitting her head. “I’m onto your shenanigans,” I told her. “Every time you feel like hurling your body through space or hitting your head on the car door, I’m onto it. I’m running interference here just trying to protect you from your foolish, histrionic self.”
She laughed. It was sort of a laugh that indicated that I was right, and that she darned well knew it.
God, I’m glad to be home. She’s a handful. I swear, ever since she’s started to age, she’s replacing narcissism with histrionics. Just because of how her mind works now, histrionics are easier to pull off than narcissistic plotting. But she managed some of that, too. Back at her condo, she tried for the millionth time to get me to agree to attend my sister’s upcoming (delayed due to coronavirus) wedding. I said no, and she said, “No pressure, but it would mean so much to me.”
“No pressure?” I asked. “You beg me to attend every single time you see me. That’s pressure-free? Really?”
“I just thought that if you really loved your sister–”
“I don’t love her. I don’t like her, either.”
“Oh, surely you don’t mean that.”
And on, and on.
“Let’s eat some of the cookies you got,” she said, sounding excited.
“I… put them back on the shelf,” I admitted.
I tried to take my leave shortly thereafter.
She didn’t pay me enough, but I was too worn down to complain. The plan is that she’s going to be in quarantine for the next two weeks, and then her boyfriend is driving down from Maine to collect her and relocate her to her cottage there. My brother has a $500 wager going with her. He states that she won’t make it to Maine as planned. I’d say it’s a wise bet, because she’s been talking about going for years, but she hasn’t made it there yet.
Also, here’s a link to me doing some fun lip-synching to Journey. Go me.
I have no idea if I have any other news. That might be it for now.