Don’t look away
Ben Werdmüller – 29 september 2020 – link blogpost
The ash on my car this morning was like a layer of sand; each grain, a fragment of something destroyed. The smoke hangs in the air and turns everything red. It falls in chunks, like snow.
I spent my morning frantically trying to find food that my mother could eat before dialysis. She can’t tolerate much, but her feeding tube doesn’t provide enough nutrition to last through a day. Ordinarily, we find ways to cook for her, but that requires a kitchen. Takeout food, which would be my first choice in this situation, is too salty for her, or has ingredients she can’t digest. The WalMart next door had been ransacked by fire evacuees; the only edible food items left were PopTarts, which aren’t on my mother’s menu. At Raley’s, further away, we found microwaveable oatmeal and some strawberries. As I loaded the car with food, I tried my best to prevent the ash from sliding through the open doors.
The surrealism of this year invites us to not take it seriously. The horror is dream-like in its absurdity. The facts and implications are so outside the parameters of ordinary life that they seem outlandish. But the sky really is red with flame, over two hundred thousand Americans alone really are dead from the pandemic, there really are unmarked federal soldiers in our cities, people really are being swept up by ICE in the dead of night and kept in concentration camps, and the worst really may be yet to come.
Ben verteld op zijn blog over zijn leven de afgelopen dagen. En het voelt zo onwerkelijk aan maar is de werkelijkheid. De bizarre feiten van de dagelijkse realiteit van een Amerikaan.
Net als Ben hoop ik op betere tijden.