« »


I’m being very literal in this post, but the word “Awakenings” immediately makes me think of three things.

I was obsessed with the book Flowers For Algernon in…junior high was it?   I loved this book.  If you don’t know the story, it’s the uplifting story of a challenged boy gaining intelligence via medical intervention.  And then it’s the heartbreaking story of the medicine not taking hold and the boy losing those abilities.  Awareness, it seems, is only cruel if taken away.  Better to be ignorant forever or is the glimmer of awareness worth the pain of loss?

Then in 1990 came the movie  Awakenings with Robin Williams and Robert DeNiro. Wow, what a great movie. I cried so hard.  Similar to Flowers for Algernon, the audience watches an average boy become practically catatonic, only to awaken with full senses.  Medicine helps but then fails and the man returns to his saddened state – with full knowledge of his own hopeless regression.

And now my own thoughts deal with my family’s own version of the two previous points.  My Grandma had a severe stroke a few weeks before Christmas.  She wasn’t exactly an active, spry 80 year old before the stroke, but now she is paralyzed on one side, including her tongue, and she has only said a few words.  We don’t know how “with it” she is, mentally.  She raises her eyebrows to indicate she’s heard or understands, she hugs with conviction (with her working arm), and she can kick a nurse away when she doesn’t want to be taken out of bed.  But she can’t point to what she wants, where it hurts, the right word written down for her.  How much of reality is she a part of?    We all hope she is NOT fully awake, trapped in a broken body unable to share her love or anger.  We all hope she is NOT aware of her own imprisonment.  The cruel reality is those who love her most hope there is no awakening inside of her.  And that sounds rotten.

There are much lighter moments in the subject of Awakenings.  As a teacher, I love those student “ah-ha” moments (sorry, is that an Opera term?) when you’ve given just the perfect description that made the lesson all clear.  In unison, the students all sit back in their chairs, lift their chin, and say “ooohhhhhhh!”.   It gives me validation that I’m in the right business.

On a final note, at the end of this special election day in Massachusetts, I ask myself: “When will conservatives wake up and think about someone other than themselves and their money?!”  I am so bummed that Teddy’s death has resulted in a Republican human occupying his seat.  But then again, it does make sense in this Puritan-undertone Commonwealth.  There’s so much to say about this election and yet I can’t begin to find the words.  I’m bummed.  This country will always be led by rich white men.  Period.  It’s how capitalism works.  I support capitalism and yet it’s so cruel to the majority.  The rich will continue getting richer with those who hold their money dearer to them than their fellow men who need services, affordable drugs, and overall healthcare.  Lobbyists and Republicans will never support those things – especially the “affordable” part.

Now I’m rambling and I must bow out.  G’night.

7 responses to “Awakenings”

  1. Avatar McKnight says:

    Irony: Scott (Fucking) Brown ran a campaign promising change and, now that he's been elected, is the key vote to filibuster the Senate into gridlock.

  2. Avatar Karen says:

    I am really tired of being told that I am against health care reform just because I am against this bill.
    It's not only Republicans that are trying to stop this bill and there were more than twice as many people voting for Scott Brown yesterday as there are registered Republicans in the entire state. I listened to interviews last night with Massachusetts citizens who voted for Obama, who are still Democrats and always will be, but they voted for Scott Brown because they do not like the direction things are headed.
    It's okay to be disappointed that your guy didn't win, but you need to understand that Conservatives ARE concerned about more than just ourselves and our money. We are trying to keep this nation free from oppressive government.

    • Karen, you have to realize that these words: "conservative" and "liberal" have come to stand for more than what they really are. I consider myself neither, but–at any given moment, depending on the topic at hand–could be accused of being either. It's important to know what you feel as an Individual. But, if you check the conservative box on the voting card, you're identifying yourself as a part of something larger, and you'll {probably} be judged for that.

      • Avatar Karen says:

        I'm not disagreeing with you there. What I am rejecting is the idea that because Republicans or Conservatives are against this particular bill, that means we're against Health Care Reform. That's simply not true.

    • Avatar rosie says:

      when members of a society lack adequate health care—which SHOULD BE considered a human right, and the government stands by and allows this decade after decade to happen–that is the TRUE definition of an oppressive government…

  3. fent11111 fent11111 says:

    Man, I really thought you guys were getting your act together with the Health Care Reform thing….
    Oh well…

  4. Lindi, nice piece. I've actually never watch Awakenings, but have kept it on my Netflix queue for {literally} years now. Time to bump it up, huh?
    As for you other yahoos…Let's not turn Lindi's comment section into a political debate. May I suggest pistols at 20 paces, high noon on Sunday?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

« »
RSS | Contact | Contribute | Login
Jojo-a-Gogo About Jojo-a-Gogo

Jojo-a-Gogo is a nice red-headed gal who doesn’t like talking about herself. The only limelight she enjoys is that on a swing dance floor. Born and raised in Kansas, she graduated from KU and then DJed and taught swing dance. She moved to Boston a month before 9/11 with her fiancee-to-become-husband and now has 2 beautiful loud-mouthed lil’ girls.

Read more by this author on 30POV .


December 2010
November 2010
On My Honor
October 2010
Witch Hunt
September 2010
If, Then.
May 2010
Small Crimes
April 2010
February 2010
"It's Complicated"
January 2010