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LJ Idol Season 9, Week 1: Jayus

That joke isn’t funny anymore
It’s too close to home
And it’s too near the bone
More than you’ll ever know.

—The Smiths

Two men stand beneath a sign welcoming travelers to Branson, MO, US midwest entertainment spot. They hold a sign between them, a long expanse of white vinyl with a word equation in red

”Diversity” = White Genocide

These men—and others like them and women, too, across the country—are participating in the White Man March, an effort to promote the cause of scores of beleagured white men across the nation and the world. I learned about this march as I scrolled through my facebook feed while my train rolled across the northern US, from Poughkeepsie, NY to Chicago, IL, and then down south to Jackson, MS. I LOL’d as I shared it, but my heart wasn’t in it.

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LJ Idol, Season 9, Week 0: Introduction

Dear Idol,

You are ending, and with you will probably end this journal. It’s a quiet place when you’re not around; when I opened it I visited frequently, using this space to, well, journal my life. Then you came along and gave me a reason to write my life, not just log it. Opening up windows onto the past has helped me find myself in the present. I should say something about my future, but that would be expected, so I’ll just say this: because of you, dear Idol, I’m less inclined to just bounce along on the wind, more likely to think and to plan. Thank you.

I’ve moved my life-talk out of this hiding place, and it has become, like the things we each of us leave behind, a shell of memories. I come back from time to time to excavate, revisiting the stories I told myself about myself. They’re hidden from the world now; perhaps one day I’ll share them again, when they’re ready and I’m ready to put a face and a name to them. For now, though, they wait in the dark, glinting gems lodged in stone.

Time now for one last mission, you and me. We are going to do a bit of digging. I don’t know what will turn up, but whatever it is, we’re going to find it together.

Your friend,