and of course me being me immediately thought of Fishbone covering Supafly Curtis Mayfield. "Rehnquist's dead/ You bettah check yo' head..."
So this afternoon, the minute I stepped off plane, I hustled home and put on my black suit with my Dino Jr. tee underneath hidden by a scarf cuz I couldn't find a clean shirt quickly, and went Downtown to pay my last respects to Chief-in-a-box. Now I'm not one of these scenemakers who has to go see every Great Man in his Box. I skipped the Reagan extravaganza, not because I bear him any particular ill will (I didn't vote for Ronbo but compared to the Bush Family Circus, he was a prince) but because I didn't feel any personal connection and didn't want to go just for the entertainment value, Death and its surrounding rituals being a serious thing, for me. I'll admit I was never a fan of Rehnquist's murky opinions; I always thought Scalia and Souter wrote much better ones, SOC reasoned more logically and Thomas was a lot more direct and to the point. However, Rehnquist did have the qualities of a decent leader. And given that the very last time I saw him in person he was pronouncing my admission to the S Ct about four months back, I felt like I owed it to Someone to stop by and say a prayer.
As it turned out, I could have skipped the suit because, in addition to lawyers and congresspeople in suits and Hill rats in their ratty gear, there were plenty of chicks in "business casual" summer office clothes, i.e. ugly thongs and the skimpiest tops their employers let them get away with, and tourists in jeans and t-shirts and shorts taking pictures of everything like it was Disneyland not a wake, and one, er, lady (possibly "of the evening") who had to be at least 55 wearing five pounds of makeup, hot pants and a see-through red stretch lace top which she at least had the sense to put a bra under. I thought maybe there'd be a separate line for bar admittees like there is for oral argument, but I learned that there wasn't from the lawyer five people away from me in line carping loudly about it on his cell fone. So I just waited with everybody else and watched the young Japanese guy ahead of me touching all the pillars and walls to see what they were made of, and preppie girls taking digicam photos of each other trying to look all sexy with the court in the background, and young republican romantics holding hands and pausing on the porch to smile at the picturesque view of the dome across the street. Yeah, this is where it all ends up. One year you're the Chief in Charge and the next year, you're dead (after the media vultures have published about 1,000 articles speculating on When You're Gonna Go and Why the Hell Don't You Get Gone Sooner) and tourists from Indiana are snapping shots and fat little Jewish-looking guys in suits are making time with anorectic blonde Washingtoniennes practically over your coffin. No wonder I distrust some traditional notions of "success".
I wonder if it will still be necessary to advise the fledgling oral arguers to never say, "The record says..." because Rehnquist will not be around to invariably ask the musical question, "Oh? On what page?" causing everyone to riffle through their binders for two precious minutes of arg time, or even longer if the stoop who said "The record says..." was unprepared. I always thought Rehnquist's voice, pre-trach tube, sounded like Charles on M*A*S*H. The last time I saw him, he was so visibly, awfully sick, I was wondering how he was going to get through the next term. I also wonder if my dentist's daughter's boyfriend ever got to clerk for him because I'm not sure what term he was signed up for. Guess it's time I made another dental appointment to get some more inside scoop.
other than that (mrs. lincoln), it was a nice weekend. Really.
Slept a lot, saw a bunch of good bands and art.
Took Mom to a ren fayre out at Sam Sheppard's parents' old house and grounds.
Yeah I know, I'm s'posed to hate rehn faires. Shaddap.
And then there is this, probably referring to Saturn movements, from Rob Brezsny:
"If the Angel decides to come it will be because you have convinced her, not by tears but by your humble resolve to be always beginning; to be a beginner." So said the poet Rainer Maria Rilke, as if speaking to your exact needs right now. Let me offer this addendum: The Angel wants to come very badly. She is passionate about offering you the novel assistance she has dreamed up just for you.
I want so badly to believe this. Even though the idea of believing in Brezsny's generalisms makes me cringe thinking I'm becoming like Horrible creepy j.j. and all of his Horrible creepy b-burg buds. GOD FORBID.