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Bernie April 30, 2015

Posted by indigobunting in Uncategorized.
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Early on during my life in Vermont (the mid-90s or so), on a trip north to Burlington to do some shopping, Tim and I were in a department store looking for ties. There was another man there doing the same. He looked familiar, but I couldn’t place him. I thought he resembled some of the wealthy gentlemen I’d been meeting farther south, the stuff of boards of directors and golfers. (Perhaps he was wearing a suit.) I nearly approached him to ask how I knew him, if we’d met somewhere (some museum function, perhaps), just like I’d nearly done with Dom DeLuise in a general store before I figured that one out. (When one is the new person in town, and everyone is new to her, she is certain she has recently met you and that she should remember who you are is embarrassed that she doesn’t.)

Just before we paid for Tim’s ties, it dawned on me that it might be Bernie Sanders, our lone congressman. I hadn’t seen that many photos of him, but my brain had finally settled on who this man might be. I asked the cashier. She looked at the credit card slip he’d just signed and confirmed it. She was a recent immigrant and did not know who he—or even what a congressman—was. I can’t say I did a good job of explaining. I was sorry I hadn’t figured it out in time to say hello to him.

That was the only time we crossed paths.

When rumors began swirling that Bernie might run for president, I wasn’t thrilled. Anyone left of seriously conservative in this country seems to be the target of ridicule, and I wasn’t sure I could stand watching it. I was, frankly, worried when he ran for Senate in 2006. I didn’t fully believe that Vermont* would promote him from congressman to senator as an Independent, and I didn’t want to lose his voice in Washington because he’d aimed too high. I was so relieved to be wrong.

But apparently something within me has shifted. It would appear that I’ve been harboring a secret hope—one so secret that I’ve been keeping it from myself—that Bernie would run, as long as he did so as a Democrat. In the wee hours of the morning, he announced he was doing just that. Do I think he can win? No. (Have you figured out that I can’t claim to be an optimist?) But I’ve come to believe that someone not tied to big money, someone who isn’t being outright bought, someone who in many ways has nothing to lose needs to speak up for the middle class in a way that’s not just lip service.

So I’m a little bit gleeful, at least briefly, at least now. Speak truth to power.

 

 

*People think of Vermont as a liberal state, but that’s not my experience, at least not in this corner. I live around a near 50-50 split. Vermont didn’t elect a Democratic governor until 1962, and the mantle has been passed back and forth between parties ever since.

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Acceptance Speech April 9, 2015

Posted by indigobunting in Uncategorized.
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(holding gold trophy)

Wow. Thank you. After a couple of sleepless nights, I really wasn’t expecting this! There are so many to thank. First, of course, the Gods of Sleep, who at last saw fit to favor me. I hope you’ll stay with me a bit longer. Thanks to the Sun, whose brightness I soaked in yesterday on my multiple-mile walk—hat tip to Vitamin D! I’d like to thank Alcohol for not messing with my sleep pattern last night, Menopause for few hot flashes, and Fantastic Food for keeping it real. A special thanks to Nausea, who showed up ever so briefly but graciously backed away at my glare. I’d like to thank Unconscious (who probably had a little help from Subconscious) for the successful abduction of Conscious. Gagging her and tying her to that chair was a nice touch, and I only half-awoke when she knocked herself and said chair over in her struggle for freedom. Great job at subduing her, guys. This award makes me feel rested and ready to face what comes next. Thanks, everyone, and (raising trophy high) good morning!

4BY1: Quarterly Report April 1, 2015

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Downy woodpecker, black-capped chickadee, white-breasted nuthatch, American goldfinch, tufted titmouse, northern cardinal, blue jay, house sparrow, dark-eyed junco, purple finch, red-bellied woodpecker, mourning dove, hairy woodpecker, common raven, American crow, red-tailed hawk, rock dove/pigeon, European starling, rough-legged hawk, snow goose, osprey, bald eagle, snowy owl, American robin, common eider, herring gull, red-breasted merganser, long-tailed duck (oldsquaw), black-backed gull, mallard, common redpoll, wild turkey, pileated woodpecker, eastern bluebird, American kestrel, northern mockingbird, turkey vulture, Canada goose, common loon, common merganser, common goldeneye, song sparrow, hooded merganser, red-winged blackbird. (43. 2012: 40. 2013: 53. 2014: 40.)

Yes, we had our second snowy owl sighting, in January, in Maine. And I finally heard my first red-winged blackbird two days ago.