Saturday, August 27, 2005

Suburban Hell

About once every year or so, I go on a rant about why Suburbia sucks so bad. I know, I know, I could just move. It's not that simple once kids enter the picture, and dh works in another city, so we essentially live between the two of them--the city of which we're a suburb, and the city in which he works. so humor me as i recount why the suburbs sucks.

my number one reason, the reason i keep coming back to, is lack of diversity. i am so sick of white bread, SUVs and minivans (hypocrite that i am for driving one, but it wasn't my choice), wal-mart, and acres of strip malls that look the same no matter where you go. i wish that all the people in my neighborhood didn't look like me; that my kids regularly could meet non-white, non-straight, non-Christian/Catholic people. it's so important that they eventually see beyond their very narrow horizons. and for me, i feel stagnation in the suburbs. all the lawns (now brown because of the heat) mowed to the same height, the identical swing sets in each yard, the "keeping up with the joneses" mentality that pushes everyone around me towards new cars, new clothes, and the very latest in everything material.

i guess this has come to a head for me because there is no one, not one solitary soul up thisaway, with whom i can discuss the ending of queer as folk. if i even so much as mention that i watch the show, i know the labels that will follow, and the stigmatization soon to follow--and i'm not even gay. can you imagine if gay people actually lived in the neighborhood? good lord, the white bread mommies and daddies would probably lock their kids up in the house for fear of contamination. not that i have any proof--no one has said anything to me that makes me believe they would be this way, but our house is the only one in winter without christmas lights, and ours was one of a tiny few that didn't have "vote bush" signs in the front yard.

i'm looking for enlightenment among those who have their heads in the sand. good luck.

don't get me wrong. the people around me are very nice, in the white-bread sense of the word. very wholesome and moral and, well, boring. i can't picture any of them going dancing or discussing philosophy or, god forbid, smoking a little mj now and again. perhaps i should have outgrown these pursuits by now, or perhaps i am relapsing into immaturity because of the recent birth of my second child, which i somehow see as having put me squarely into the "suburban soccer mom" category, even though i strive on a daily basis to defy the label. despite the minivan.

i'd love to shop at a farmer's market or at a grocery store run by an individual or family. i'd appreciate the opportunity to eat out somewhere that isn't a chain, or a chain in disguise. i'd adore having a coffee house with atmosphere to spare that didn't close after six months (i miss you, mcnally's). it would be nice to be able to walk somewhere besides around my white-bread neighborhood--to walk to buy decent bread, or get a good cup of coffee, or a kitschy shop that has nothing i need but isn't mass-produced shlock like one finds at target.

the world out here closes down at 10 pm. there is no hip bar to speak of--only a sports bar or two. i guess we have no need for bars because there are no single people here--only married couples with or without children.

oh, to speak with someone who has never heard of "oswald" or "the wiggles," or whose latest reading endeavor didn't involve romance novels or books that oprah or the today show endorse. or "pooh and the dragon," dd's latest favorite that i am sick to death of. to find someone who listens to npr and can't stand cnn or msnbc, or who chafes at the lack of international news coverage--or hell, the lack of national news coverage--on the local four networks.

i should get out more, you counsel in your head. nothing is preventing me from searching out those souls and making it better in my life. and right you are. i just wanted to vent, to blow some steam.

i once again find myself at a crossroads, where life has been devoid of anything except baby and maternity leave, television and dvds. i stand at the brink, ready to dive in again. but are there things i wish to eliminate before heading out into the water--excess baggage i don't want to drag along with me this time around?

writing has been missing. real, for me, not for profit, writing. ficitonal, escapist writing. running too. i'll start that again soon. but to structure the writing in, something else has to go. or else i have to sleep less. or stop talking to dh--impractical and not a solution. it's not going to wait anymore. perhaps i should look into those classes i keep promising myself--a little structure never hurt before...

or perhaps the act of creating life has kicked up the "creative" gene again and i will settle back down into complacency soon. except that i don't want to be complacent. when did i become so? i was being so vigilant...

ah well. there are dishes in the sink; there is laundry in the washer-- children to be bathed and weeds in the garden to pull. it's time to go back.


haroldjones9804 said...
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Josh said...
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