by Tess Adair
My original plan for this blog was to write a “crush of the week” post every Friday, but it doesn’t seem quite right to do that this week. I thought instead I would try to write about the shooting in Oregon. Another day, another shooting, right?
Except I can’t seem to bring myself to write much about that, either. What the hell can I say that hasn’t already been said? If you want to read something about it, I suggest this.
As for me...I keep thinking about this Elvis Costello lyric:
“Sometimes I am so forgiving
Everything seems bad to me.”
It’s kind of an odd lyric. It comes back to me whenever I feel the sting of some injustice, either personal or political, real or imagined. The lead in is a little deceptive--“sometimes I am so forgiving.” On the surface, the suggestion is positive. Forgiveness is positive, forgiveness is good.
But the second part undercuts that. “Everything seems bad to me.” This forgiveness isn’t positive. It’s necessary.
Sometimes I am so forgiving, because to do something as simple as get through the day, we have to be.
Sometimes I am so forgiving, because the world is cruel, but we have to live in it. We are forgiving because we have no other option.
Then of course, there’s the next line of the song.
“But I can’t go on living
With this alibi.”
Throughout the song, Costello uses “alibi” in a number of different ways, to mean a number of different things. Primarily, he uses it to mean “excuse.” I think that’s what he means here, too.
Well. That’s all I’ve got for now.
So let me give you some kittens.