Friday, June 22, 2012

Thrift store find...

Like most women, I enjoy having nice things. Lately, I've noticed that a lot of my style over the last decade has been quiet, sedate, and DULL. I wanted to spice things up a bit, but finances still are a major factor.

Which is why I'm so very thrilled at what I found tonight. Walking through the thrift store, a bright red leather bag caught my eye. It was beautiful, gorgeous - and behind the counter, which in thrift store language means "major label" and "out-of-your-league-Tricia". I sighed, thinking to myself that it just wasn't going to happen.

I tend to not even ask the price on things stored behind the counter. It's just not worth having the dream crushed. I could see the price tags on some other purses back there - all uglier than the red one - and the lowest price I saw was $70. "Oh well," I thought. "Some woman is going to get very lucky."

When we made it up to the register, Sean asked the lady how much it was. She wandered over and I saw her hand caress the leather, and I just KNEW it was one of those buttery leather products that make you want to sigh in sheer bliss. And then she told us the price. And I thought my ears were deceiving me.

"It's $19.99."

No. That couldn't be right. I must have misheard her. And before I could ask for clarification, my husband said "Let's see it."

It was as buttery as I had imagined, and such a bright heart started to beat hard at the thought of owning something that was so boldly and outrageously feminine. And then I saw the brand on the front and my heart skipped a beat.

PRADA. As in "the devil wears it". As in "a brand Tricia will never ever own in her entire life". I sighed and opened my mouth to tell the woman to put it back, but my husband spoke first.

"Add it to our pile, we're ready to check out."

I'm still in shock. Complete, utter shock. And that shock is starting to be tempered by purely female desire to gloat. I own a prada purse. Me. I wonder if I can convince Sean to let me sleep with it tonight?

The season picks up pace...

I'm still pretty much incapable of doing any major gardening (stupid back injury, ugh). But I am managing to get some things done. The entire front patch has been weeded, a second set of seedlings are starting to sprout, and foot by painful square foot, my garden is being extended.

(why foot by painful foot? Digging the new garden with a typical long-handled shovel makes my back light on fire before going numb - every time, without fail. So the only way to clear out my garden is to sit down with the hand shovel and till the earth that way. It's a long process - I could get the same amount cleared in two minutes with a big shovel, but with the small shovel it takes twenty minutes...and it still hurts. But not as badly.)

Photos to come as soon as things are looking more neat.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Ethical reporting - where do we draw the line?

The news hit the world like a slap in the face over Memorial Day weekend - a man in Miami stripped naked and attacked another man, chewing his face off. The attack lasted for eighteen minutes and the attacker was only subdued by a hailstorm of bullets.

All this is fact. All of this is good, factual, non-speculative reporting.

Then came the follow-up reports. The attacker, Rudy Eugene, was on drugs. He was taking bath salts. He was taking PCP. He was cursed by a voodoo priest. Theories abounded, each one a little crazier than the last. His family and friends have protested, saying he was a good-natured young man who carried his bible around, attended church, and never took anything stronger than the occasional joint. This contrast only added fuel to the fire.

Then, today, I found out the worst aspect of all (other than, of course, a man LOSING HIS FACE) - graphic crime scene photos were released to news organizations, including close-ups of the victim's face. ~sarcasm~ How sensational! How electrifying!

Screw that. It's unethical. It's criminal. And it's completely irreversible. Once a photo is out on the 'net, it's there to stay. And this pisses me off.

Perhaps I'm just oversensitive to this situation because I myself have been homeless. I've known others who are very much like the victim, Ronald Poppo - those who are chronically homeless. I feel like many of the big media outlets are treating Poppo like a second-class citizen at best, a non-entity at worse. No one asked Poppo for permission to release such graphic photos of his own injuries. I doubt such permission was even considered, for most feel that the homeless don't have any rights to anything, including their own image.

I don't know if this blog post is making a lot of sense, as I am so angry I can barely type straight. But I do know that I am sorely missing the days of straight-shooting reporting, just the facts, where the victim's rights were considered sacred and the news was delivered without the opinions, fear-mongering, and speculation that fills today's news shows.

I miss Walter Cronkite.

I miss Edward R. Murrow.

I miss reporters who will make the delineation between actual fact, opinion, and speculation clear-cut and concise. I miss journalist ethics and integrity.

I miss the little girl I used to be who wanted to grow up to be the next Barbara Walters or Connie Chung.

And as long as the public spends their time and money on news programs that are as sensationalized as soap operas, I know the modern news will not change.