I am sure that I do not have to go too much into detail what life was like for all of us in 2004. Our options were either John Kerry or George W Bush, neither of which offered any real hope for humanity. I could go into the depressing details but it is obviously time to put that in the past (not to simply forget about it all however) and work on the future.
But here is a little look back at what life was like for me in late ’04, and just how rotten things were becoming. It is kind of a funny story now that I have some distance from it all.
So I was helping my fine turkish friends with their body jewlery booth at a fancy mall in Tulsa in the dreadful year of 2004, and a part of that time included the run-up to the elections. This music store across the way had life-sized standees of a few people, and there was this "Dubya!" one which really caught my eye. I went to the music store and got one, figuring I could have good times using it to help us move some of our silly and overpriced products imported from God knows what miserable place.
Well, after spending a little time getting him all gussied up with a nice eye-brow ring..hip-trendy plugs up ‘n down his ears and a fine American flag (9-11 have u forgotten???) tounge-ring, I stood him up facing the direction where most of the heavy traffic into the dumb mall normally was.
About five minutes later this gal with this monster bee-hive hairdo and her husband walked by and he said "As an America, and a Republican..I am very offended by what you have done!"
After that brief incident, I no doubt thought things were going to be super crazy relative to the people shopping at the mall and their reactions to the pierced up Dubya! standee. Remember, this was Tulsa, Oklahoma and there are a lot of people there that looooooove "freedom" and all of that crap there. But to my suprise, it was all pretty positive. Positive relative to the people there, now the "authorities" that is a different matter…as it always is.
The gentleman who took the picture below actually fought in WW II. He seemed to me to be a bright ol’ feller…retired doctor…and he loved what I did with the standee. He thought it was absolutley fantastic and laugh out loud good times.
He releayed to me a story of his old pal who about 7 or 8 years ago who was a gunner in the war and did a ton of missions, on every 4th of July would come to the mall with a huge american flag and do his mall walking while walking around and carrying it. One forth of July..the mall security came up to him and said he couldn’t do it anymore. They gave some random reason, and that was that (they weren’t prophetic enough to say "hey you ass, September 11th aint done happened yet s’get gone!!!!"). The doctor told me "that was the one time he was shot down…he flew all those successful missions, and it took those idiots at the mall to shoot him down…good luck with what you are doing here."
Well, a day or so later the mall security reeeealy started getting on to me. Saying they were getting some complaints. They didn’t give any details, but said I had to take it down. I did. Then they would leave and I would put it back up. This process repeated quite a few times, until one day when this big blonde hair blue eyed security guard reminicent of the individuals my Doctor friend fought against. He told me I had to take it down or else. "Or else what??" He replied or else you are gone. Your lease is over, the end.
Then he asked why I kept putting it up over and over. I told him about Rosa Parks and how she kept sitting in the back of the bus over and over and then finally the right thing happened. He replied to that with, and this summed everything up really well about private tyrannies, malls, neo-capitalism…the whole schebang….
"…WELL, THAT WAS A LONG TIME AGO!"
So now Obama has been elected. Every county in Oklahoma voted for McCain, and it will be interesting to see how things are in the coming years. If positave change occurs, I think some people here can wake up. If the changes in the media spectrum occur, the things Free Press and others are fighting for, people in my homestate can learn some things they are sheltered from, and everyone can start living better lives.
I am not overly optimistic, but I am feeling better than I did in 2004. And Rosa’s struggles don’t seem as removed as they were four years ago, which is no doubt a good thing.