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Isn’t getting older the most remarkable thing?! I remember being much younger. I remember some of the thoughts I had, some of the issues, some of the emotions in all their glorious intensity. Now it is different.

I remember reading a line from Thoreau’s Walden when I was in school.

Age is no better, hardly so well, qualified for an instructor as youth, for it has not profited so much as it has lost.
Then I interpreted it to mean that aging may be overrated. Now my perspective is different. Of course, perhaps aging IS overrated. But there are things that have an incredible depth for me, now, that seems new. That I do not recall from earlier times.

I wrote most of the following diary five years ago tonight, to honor Dr. King. I am including it below very much as I wrote it then, except to say that even five years makes a difference to me in how deeply the teachings and the words of Dr. King strike me. Perhaps I have internalized them more, or more completely.

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As wikipedia defines it, …

internalization involves the integration of attitudes, values, standards and the opinions of others into one's own identity or sense of self.
I don’t know a way to evaluate that objectively, but I have to say that it FEELS right. It feels accurate. That Dr. King’s teaching lives within me more clearly than in years past. That his importance to me continues to grow, continues to inform my politics and my human relating. I know I have a long way to go, but on this night, it feels like a good thing.

The original diary was written on the night of Barack Obama’s 2009 Inauguration. Some of what appears in the diary refers to events of that day, of the great hope and optimism of the time. I still feel that hope and optimism, most particularly because of the seeds Dr. King planted, the seeds he still plants, the seeds germinated and germinating and still in dormancy. One of my responsibilities is to prove fertile ground for seeds like those. And to share those seeds onward, much as they came to me, with love and positive intent. I know many of you feel the same.

Here is that recycled diary, then.

In this, one of the most emotional weeks of my life, Kathy and I went to see Kate Campbell perform in Atlanta. She performed with her friend and bass player, Don Porterfield, at the Theatrical Outfit, a fine theater in downtown Atlanta. I was thrilled at the prospect, in part, because of a song Kate has been performing a lot lately, called Crazy in Alabama. She wrote the song in 1995, but it has acquired a special relevance in light of historic events. (Lyric excerpts from her website, linked with full lyrics at end of diary.)
I heard Odessa’s mind was sick
That she was crazier than hell
The police caught her turning tricks
Down at the Blue and Gray motel
Odessa was the neighbor’s maid
She had ten mouths at home to feed
I heard Kate Campbell perform this song for the first time in 2004 or 2005. I had never heard of her before, but I had not even heard all the lyrics of the song before tears were pouring down my cheeks. I have had the same experience with that song (and others of hers) quite a few times since, and tonight is no different. Kate comes from the same South where I grew up, with many of the same experiences, with many of the same reactions, so her genius and her creativity touch me on deep levels.
They bussed her kids to Birmingham
And put her in the county jail
Nobody seemed to give a damn
They say a white man posted bail
My dad said not to breathe a word
I told my brother all I heard
Of course, the levels do not have to be so deep these days, because my emotions are so near the surface. I watched a fine man place his hand upon a Bible earlier today, and the same deep joy and deep emotions streamed down my cheeks just the same.
And the train of change
Was coming fast to my hometown
We had the choice to climb on board
Or get run down
It was crazy there were grown men fights
Over segregation and civil rights
Martin Luther King and the KKK
George C. Wallace and LBJ
And when the National Guard came in
I thought the world was gonna end
It was crazy in Alabama
CNN showed the entire ‘I Have a Dream’ speech yesterday. I cried hot tears during that, too. Dismay and regret and wonder why this has taken so long ... . You know, according to Cesar Millan, the Dog Whisperer, dogs (Canis lupus familiaris) live in the moment. If dogs experience different energy from their ‘owners,’ they (the dogs) change and reorient their behavior almost immediately, which bewilders the owners. They think Cesar is a miracle worker (which he IS!), but he says dogs can change quickly because they live in the moment, not in the past, and making dramatic changes happens very fast for them.

Of course, changes can happen fast for our species, too, if we are receptive and if we live in the moment. I have to tell you, just speaking for myself. It is much easier to live in the moment now than it was yesterday. Than it has been for the last eight years.

Down at the corner Dairy Dip
They sold soft ice cream for a dime
White people ordered from the front
The side was for the colored line
We all were told they had their place
Because they were a different race
We spent hot summer afternoons
At the public swimming pool
Where the privileged and the few
Played on their island of cool blue
Brown children watched outside the fence
It never made one lick of sense
So, even if there is regret at the slow pace of social change, I have great joy that we are where we are now. And, perhaps, as my President, Barack Obama says, looking forward is the way to go. My feeling is that MLK Jr. would approve with some sense of satisfaction.
My momma yelled child get inside
Drew the drapes and locked the doors
We watched the marchers passing by
Felt the rumble heard the roar
They all held hands they sang and wept
And freedom rang in every step
Freedom rang in every step ... I saw that, today, too. In the strides taken by my President and the First Lady of the land. I saw it in the steps taken by the millions on the Mall, and in the videos of campaigners for truth and justice and progress over the last 45 plus years. I see it in the steps taken today by our gay and TG brothers and sisters, in the steps we take with them, in the words we share, here on dKos or elsewhere in the world at large. Nothing in today’s world gives me greater pleasure than the perception of this freedom ringing in our many steps.
Cause the train of change
Was marching through my hometown
We had the choice to climb on board
Or get run down
It was crazy there were grown men fights
Over segregation and civil rights
Martin Luther King and the KKK
George C. Wallace and LBJ
And when the National Guard came in
I thought the world was gonna end
It was crazy in Alabama

Here is a video of my friend, Kate Campbell, performing this song. Be patient with her, she transposes two words late in the song, but it will convey her incredible creativity and heart all the same. By all means read along as you watch.

Here are the complete lyrics, from her website:

Crazy In Alabama

I heard Odessa’s mind was sick
That she was crazier than hell
The police caught her turning tricks
Down at the Blue and Gray motel
Odessa was the neighbor’s maid
She had ten mouths at home to feed

They bussed her kids to Birmingham
And put her in the county jail
Nobody seemed to give a damn
They say a white man posted bail
My dad said not to breathe a word
I told my brother all I heard

And the train of change
Was coming fast to my hometown
We had the choice to climb on board
Or get run down
It was crazy there were grown men fights
Over segregation and civil rights
Martin Luther King and the KKK
George C. Wallace and LBJ
And when the National Guard came in
I thought the world was gonna end
It was crazy in Alabama

Down at the corner Dairy Dip
They sold soft ice cream for a dime
White people ordered from the front
The side was for the colored line
We all were told they had their place
Because they were a different race
We spent hot summer afternoons
At the public swimming pool
Where the privileged and the few
Played on their island of cool blue
Brown children watched outside the fence
It never made one lick of sense

But the train of change
Was coming fast to my hometown
We had the choice to climb on board
Or get run down
It was crazy there were grown men fights
Over segregation and civil rights
Martin Luther King and the KKK
George C. Wallace and LBJ
And when the National Guard came in
I thought the world was gonna end
It was crazy in Alabama

My momma yelled child get inside
Drew the drapes and locked the doors
We watched the marchers passing by
Felt the rumble heard the roar
They all held hands they sang and wept
And freedom rang in every step

Cause the train of change
Was marching through my hometown
We had the choice to climb on board
Or get run down
It was crazy there were grown men fights
Over segregation and civil rights
Martin Luther King and the KKK
George C. Wallace and LBJ
And when the National Guard came in
I thought the world was gonna end
It was crazy in Alabama

I heard Odessa’s mind was sick
That she was crazier than hell

Kate Campbell / Kenya Slaughter Walker
© 1995 Fame Publishing Co. Inc. (BMI) / Multisongs (SEASAC)
On to tonight’s comments! (Assembled and expertly formatted by brillig!)





Brillig's ObDisclaimer: The decision to publish each nomination lies with the evening's Diarist and/or Comment Formatter. My evenings at the helm, I try reeeeallllyy hard to publish everything without regard to content. I really do, even when I disagree personally with any given nomination. "TopCommentness" lies in the eyes of the nominator and of you, the reader - I leave the decision to you. I do not publish self-nominations (ie your own comments) and if I ruled the world, we'd all build community, supporting and uplifting instead of tearing our fellow Kossacks down.


From Chrislove:
In HamdenRice's front-paged diary from 2011 Most of you have no idea what Martin Luther King actually did, gizmo59 makes an important case for how Dr. King's work impacted other oppressed minority groups, namely LGBT people.
From edrie:
This by Skyye has to be one of the best descriptors of the gop i've heard - ever!
From greenbird:
Flour and water gravy: it's what's for suppah! halleluiah OABAAB (once a bum, always a bum), by Mokurai.

can't explain well but be there or B2 (can't make superscript '2' either...) Tucker designed lots of things, including a rotating turret. Hence, this nominee, from palantir.

Hut sup rah um and arilla-rah, and so-on so-on so-forth.

regards, greenbird (and Horton)

From BeninSC:
Flagged by mimi, this comment by Gil Bagnell provides financial insight into Freedom Industries Bankruptcy filings.

Flagged by hester, this comment by middlegirl contains a funny link (with picture!) about a support group for mayors bullied by Christie (quick read!).

Flagged by joe shikspack, this image in a comment from Knucklehead is just incredible!



Top Mojo for yesterday January 19th, first comments and tip jars excluded. Thank you mik for the mojo magic! For those of you interested in How Top Mojo Works, please see his diary FAQing Top Mojo.
  1) Holy shit! by on the cusp — 164
  2) Your diaries have been 1 of this site's bigger by RFK Lives — 142
  3) It's a shame the tape cut off by Dallasdoc — 140
  4) Here's to a brave lady. by nailbender — 118
  5) Vaya con FSM, mi amigo by Dallasdoc — 111
  6) Can't Fault You, We Made the Decision 10 Years Ago by Gooserock — 109
  7) She's still doing penance for revealing Mitt's lie by Dallasdoc — 107
  8) Good Catch by SilverWillow — 96
  9) and they can show Steve's show by anna shane — 92
10) It appears so... by markthshark — 92
11) Crowley wasn't acting. by IndieGuy — 92
12) Thanks, I was reading to see if anything by Phoebe Loosinhouse — 91
13) Welcome to global citizenship by BOHICA — 88
14) Cemented that Crowley is a true hack. by ExpatGirl — 84
15) Yeah, who are you going to believe? by AnnetteK — 81
16) Weird how none of these network mistakes go by nailbender — 80
17) Why were you being politic as a politician? by Dallasdoc — 79
18) Sounds like an adventure.  Good luck brother by BigAlinWashSt — 78
19) Gotta love a courageous Democrat by a2nite — 74
20) Check out Bob Brauns' blog by leftangler — 73
21) State Assembly Minority Leader Jon Bramnick by Dallasdoc — 69
22) She seems like the real deal by crystal eyes — 65
23) I'll throw in a RFK quote that shows your point by RFK Lives — 64
24) Hasta la vista, OPOL. by rserven — 64
25) strong work by misterwade — 63
26) Tangential but related by hester — 63
27) Thanks Goose. by One Pissed Off Liberal — 63
28) Irony to the max by rblinne — 62
29) actions speak louder than words by LieparDestin — 61
30) She's Already The Subject Of Another Investigation by majcmb1 — 60
31) I am looking at Ecuador by se portland — 60
32) Pot is the least dangerous "drug" of all. by doroma — 60

Top Pictures Cats for yesterday, January 19th.  Click any image to be taken to the full comment. Thank you jotter for the image magic!



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