Saturday, December 23, 2023

hiding in plain sight

At the lovely dinner party this evening, no one spoke of Gaza although I know that every single person at the table is agonizing about it, whether because we've been talking about it (Big A, Nu, LB, and TB) or because I know from their socials how upset they are (AH, KG, LV). It's like we have a disease and everyone knows about it, but we have to bravely carry on without discussing it at the dinner table. I played along beautifully.

I was all full of effing holiday cheer in my Rudoph the reindeer overalls with the jingly red nose. And every time someone remarked on it, I was hard pressed not to sing this song

Because that would also be inappropriate for this group--some of whom I know from work. Something very much on my mind, because after years at this point, last night I dreamt about the person I brought a Title IX case against. No current students remember him probably--he was asked to leave on the cusp of the pandemic--but in my dream an alumnus visiting the department was curious as to why there was no picture of the abuser in the faculty "gallery." I let it go on for a while, and when the alumnus asked again, I burst out: "Because he was a serial abuser. We don't have his picture up because he abused people." 

And then my dream veered off into a seaplane ride and since the only time I've been on one was near Seattle, that's how it looked. And the only point of the ride was to ooh and aah over some baroque Christmas decorations visible from the air. 

Speaking of which, I am almost ready for Christmas! In fact, I was almost ready last week, but I wasn't happy with the way I'd wrapped some presents, so I went in and did them all over again. No one will notice except for me. But it kinda makes sense to me. I'm so excited to give people their presents.

Pic: A blue tit (I think?) hides among the red winterberries along the Red Cedar. Walk with L. 


Nance said...

Beautiful photo. You have such lovely places to walk!

I'm so sorry you're struggling. Clearly, you're literally feeling the weight of the world, and you desperately want to do Something about it. That's why you dreamt of your legal action--you made that person answer for his wrong actions. You want to do the same for the people of Gaza.

Instead, you rewrap gifts that seemed wrong to you. I hope that was therapeutic. maya, you do and have done so many humane and philanthropic things here. You raise awareness about Gaza. You are a caring and concerned human being. Trust that You Are Part Of The Solution.

Gillian said...

Nice catch.

StephLove said...

Beautiful photo. Took me a while but I found the bird.

I think your friend in the comment above may be right about your feelings about one injustice spilling over into another in your dreams.

The world is so big to contain as much beauty and sorrow as it does. It can be hard to know what to do with that.

maya said...

OMG, Nance! The way you read my dream was just... brilliant. I'm in a better place today, thank you.

Gillian, thanks!

StephLove--I found myself searching for the bird the first couple of times too.

And I think you'd enjoy Nance's work at

And yes and yes. <3

last day/first day

And that's a wrap on classes until August. There are exams and meetings next week and task forces that will meet through the summer and ...