I’m rationing my viewing of the impeachment hearings. I have to consider my blood pressure.
I’m amazed at how many of the legislators, when they could be asking the witnesses questions, choose to show off their failure to grasp the fact that impeachment isn’t a conviction.
Fun games to play while this goes on: Try to say “quid pro quo” five times really fast. Predictably, binge drinkers have been doing shots together every time the phrase is used. Double shot if the witness says it. Triple if a Republican representative says it.
It was great to see House Speaker Nancy Pelosi turn to the cameras in a press conference and school President Donald Trump in the meaning of the word “exculpatory” and tell the rest of us “quid pro quo” is Latin for “bribery.”
I’m a big fan of dictionaries, so I got a huge kick out of her performance there. The best part of the whole show so far.
Turning to the local front, City Councilmember Kshama Sawant says the pro-sweeps candidates in the Nov. 5 election got swept and now she wants funding for 14 more tiny house villages. I like that and hope to see some commitment by the city to maintain them and make them permanent. People need more than a few months or a year of housing. They need stability so they can make plans and improve their lives.
Speaking of plans, the passage of Tim Eyman’s $30 car tab fee cap threatens all the transit construction I care about. I’ve had big plans to ride the light rail to Northgate. I wanted it. My dreams are being dashed.
I didn’t understand the thinking behind that initiative: To make it cheaper to drive — because you don’t pay the extra car tab fee — mass transit that lessens gridlock doesn’t get built, so you get to sit in your cheaper car for longer in traffic jams?
Oh, right. It was a state initiative, and because most of the state doesn’t drive in Seattle, what do they care?
Well, like I say, it’s important for people to be able to make plans. Perhaps seeing the throttling of our city’s plans to relieve congestion will help people appreciate the needs of others to have stability.
Having been homeless often, I never really feel safe in my housing. It would be great if I could completely relax in confidence that it will always be there, but the man-toddler-in-chief appointed Ben Carson to head the Department of Housing and Urban Development. During this adminstration, all that allows me to stay in subsidized housing is my advanced age. Carson wants everyone else to rotate out for their own good.
We need new subsidized housing so nobody has to be turned out of existing housing, but we still haven’t undone all the cuts to hud over the years.
In the meantime, I find myself always dreaming about what kind of housing I really want. Other people say they count sheep to get to sleep. I go to sleep imagining houses of all kinds — all shapes and sizes and all kinds of furnishing. Tiny, big, middling, meandering, hanging, wide, skinny, tall, squat, rectangular, round, star-shaped, L-shaped, U-shaped, A-shaped, box-shaped, domed.
I want an atrium. Not necessarily an atrium in a house. An atrium that is a house.
Or a house that looks like a furniture showroom on the inside.
Years ago, I had persistent dreams of houses that look like gazebos.
A tower would have been nice when I was younger. I think I’m getting too close to the age when I won’t be able to climb a lot of stairs, so now when I dream of towers they always have elevators. Nothing ostentatious, though. No fancy iron work. Just your basic, functioning elevator.
Heaven could be a house with an open interior courtyard, with trees, orange trees and overlooking balconies. Even just one or two overlooking balconies — I’m not greedy. Oh, maybe a bridge, going from one interior balcony to the other, from which to pick the oranges, if it would not be too much of an added expense.
Or how about two towers and an arched, enclosed bridge between them, and the bridge is where the living room goes? And an orange tree alongside it, etc.
OK, I have extravagant dreams. But if I knew I’d have a guarantee of stability, I would be happy with a tiny house. Stability is worth trading in the orange tree and the towers and the interior courtyard.
How about a tiny house with a mote of flying buttresses and politician-fighting gargoyles?
Dr. Wes Browning is a one time math professor who has experienced homelessness several times. He supplied the art for the first cover of Real Change in November of 1994 and has been involved with the organization ever since. This is his weekly column, Adventures in Irony, a dry verbal romp of the absurd. He can be reached at drwes (at) realchangenews (dot) org
Read the full Nov. 20 - 26 issue.
© 2019 Real Change. All rights reserved. Real Change is a non-profit organization advocating for economic, social and racial justice since 1994. Learn more about Real Change and donate now to support independent, award-winning journalism.