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Thursday, November 10, 2011

11-11-11...And More Bad News

The news has been so busy this week. Herman Cain and his sexual harassment troubles. The Republican debates, where Rick Perry had a "brain freeze" when he tried to come up with the three agencies he'd obliterate as president, and the Penn State abuse scandal, featuring students rioting because they're upset that "legend" Joe Paterno, the school's football coach, was fired because he neglected to contact police after he found out his former assistant Jerry Sandusky was seen molesting a boy in the Penn State showers...nine years ago.

Since I don't know where to begin...should I talk about Herman, and the now four accusers who claim he sexually harassed them? Or that he called former speaker of the house Nancy Pelosi "Princess Nancy" during the debate? Or that his only responses to questions last night seemed to be "I have a BOLD plan, 9-9-9"? Should I beg Minnesota Congresswoman Michelle Bachman to learn to pronounce the country in which she lives, and for which she is running for president: Michelle, it's not "The Uninined States", it's The UniTed States." Should I talk about Mitt Romney's flip-flop views, or Rick Santorum's bragging about putting people to work on the natural gas project and never mentioning the possible negative effects on the environment and on the people who live near the wells? (or that the moderators didn't bother to question him about same?). Should I get on board with every other news outlet and mention over and over and over that Rick Perry has no more business running for president than a jumping bean? Or talk about Ron Paul, who while always entertaining and is maybe a good guy to have on staff is just a hair too out there to be president? Then there's Newt, clearly a smart man but slightly over the top on brain science as one of his key platform points, and Jon Huntsman, the only person on the stage who seems to have any sense and whose poll numbers suggest he'll be one of the first to drop out. I could talk also about Penn State, and how utterly mystified I am that students are filling the streets and shouting "Joe Don't Go!", seeming to forget entirely that there are eight boys, and maybe (probably) more, whose lives have been shattered by this monster Sandusky and that Pantero, in the name of football, did nothing to stop it.

But I can't. I can't talk about any of these things for two reasons: my head is bursting with absurdity of our Republican presidental candidates and the horror of the Penn State scandal, and because at the time of this writing it's the eve of 11-11-11.

For years I've been consumed with the number 11. January 11 (1/11), November 11 (11/11), and (egads!) when the clock strikes 11:11. 9-11 was no surprise to me (in that there was an 11 in the date), nor was the fact that one of the flights that hit the Trade Centers was American Flight 11. The number 11 and any of its variations has terrible connotations for me. I used to have to cover the digital clock in my car with a post-it note because I became so obsessed 1:11 and 11:11. It got so bad that if I happened to see those numbers I'd look away, then look again, and then believed that if I looked at the numbers a third time it meant bad luck. Yes yes yes, I realize this is a bit OCD. But what can you do? We all have our...well, our OCD moments I guess.

A friend of mine, who is aware of this little problem I have, sent me an email tonight about all the people who are getting married on 11-11-11, and all the gamblers who are betting on 11-11-11, and all the others who think this date has some kind of magical qualities. Good for them. In fact, I wish I was one of them. But I'm not. For years (no kidding) I've planned what I'd do on November 11, 2011. I'm not going to the local veterans' day parade. I'm not getting married. I'm not going to the casino and throwing my life savings on the roulette wheel's number 11. What I am doing is absolutely nothing tomorrow. I'm not getting in the car, I'm not turning on the stove, and in fact may not even get out of bed. I'm thinking I may just stay put, with quilts pulled up to my chin, hug the dog, and wait for 12:01 a.m., November 12, to arrive. My only problem is that if I don't set a foot on the floor tomorrow I'll probably find myself turning on the TV, and in the process will be forced to listen to more dreadful details about sexual abuse, sexual harassment, and Republican debate gaffes, not to mention dropping points on the stock market.

I'm not in the least surprised all this bad news is happening this week. Tomorrow is 11-11-11. I don't know about you, but I'm keeping my head down.

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About Me

Newspaper columnist; blogger; author of Delta Dead; author of 101 Tip$ From My Depression-Era Parents; author of Australian Fly; editor: ...And I Breathed (author, Jason Garner, former CEO of Global Music at Live Nation), "A History of the Lawrence S. Donaldson Residence"; "The Port Washington Yacht Club: A Centennial Perspective"; "The Northeastern Society of Periodontists: The First Fifty Years"; editor: NESP Bulletin; editor: PWYC Mainsail; past editorial director: The International Journal of Fertility & Women's Medicine; past editor of: Long Island Power & Sail, Respiratory Review; Medical Travelers' Advisory; School Nurse News; Clear Images; Periodontal Clinical Investigations; Community Nurse Forum