Author Archives: Missy Comley Beattie

F the USA

I fold the dinner napkins and place them on the dining table. This life, my life, is just as it was yesterday and the day before. Continue reading

Night is day and day is night

As I approached the grocery’s checkout lane, a magazine cover’s words greeted, “51 REASONS FOR HOPE.” Hmm, hope. The pessimism I feel, not only about the present but also the future, shaped my reaction, “I can think of at least 52 reasons for despair.” Continue reading

Wading through peanut butter

In the interest of research, I watched Matt Lauer’s interview with war criminal George W. Bush online. When the former tool of Empire told Lauer, another tool of Empire, that a free press is indispensable to democracy, I recalled journalist Helen Thomas who was moved from her front-row seat at White House press conferences to the back because the Bush administration didn’t like her confrontational questions. Digging around, I found that Thomas called out the Obama administration’s press handling: “ . . . we have had some control but not this control. I mean I’m amazed, I’m amazed at you people who call for openness and transparency . . .” She continued by adding that not even Nixon tried to control the press as much as Obama did. Continue reading

The party’s over

In 2003, I was living in NYC. The George W. Bush administration was manipulating intelligence, stating a case for the invasion of Iraq—a war in which 4500 U.S. troops died, including my nephew who was killed in 2005. No one knows the number of Iraqi casualties, but it’s estimated that this could be as high as one million. Continue reading

Waste no more time on Clinton

During the days leading up to choosing HER, HIM, someone else, or nobody, I’d have serious this-can’t-be-real thoughts. They persist. Friends and family are experiencing the same. Continue reading

It’s worse than pussy grabbing

Repelled by Donald Trump’s pussy grabbing, Republican politicians are scattering like roaches exposed to strobe lights. (This just in: Many of the roaches are crawling back.) Continue reading

I can put it down

During a flight, I usually read a mystery, for time zooming. My sister Laura, a crime/drama addict, provides recommendations. She says, “If someone isn’t murdered on page one, I’m not interested.” She’s kidding (maybe), but the books she praises have multiple plot developments, and just when you’re certain you know who did what, there’s a whiplashing twist. Continue reading

Not voting is a vote for?

Years ago when my husband Charles and I moved to Nashville, we were feted, intro’d to the Vanderbilt Medical Center community. As I mingled, the vice chancellor’s wife approached. “Have you found your church home?” Continue reading

Pick your poison

This past week at the Democratic National Shit Show (DNSS), a spin off of UnREAL, Bernie (“I am proud to stand with her”) Sanders watched as his candle was snuffed. The producers, operating the strings, and Bernie, knew he wasn’t “wifey” material. Wifeys are establishment and while Bernie proved to be establishment, he was cast as a revolutionary. Small r. Continue reading

An alarmingly ignorant fuck

I love peanut butter—peanut butter on a banana or with blueberries. I may have invented the combo of prunes and peanut butter, although I don’t have a patent, and speaking of peanut butter, inventions, and patents, I was consuming creamy peanut butter when I read that Rep. Steve King, Iowa Republican, asked what nonwhites have done for civilization during a panel discussion led by MSNBC’s Chris Hayes on Monday, the first day of the Republican National Shit Show (RNSS). Continue reading

Scripture, memorials, lies, life, and death culture

I’m waiting for a call that could be either good or bad news and the longer I wait, the more anxious I become, knowing that the longer I have to wait makes it more likely that the news will not be what I want to hear. I’ve avoided this particular caring for someone, this caring enough that you engage in exactly this—this worrying and waiting. I should have run when I could’ve although that would have meant choosing solitude. As a neighbor said about my reluctance to take a chance: “If you want to make an omelet you have to break some eggs.” Continue reading

Hoaxes/bullshitters

Despite Donald Trump’s dismissal of climate change as a “hoax” conceived by China, Politico reported that Trump’s applied for permission to build a seawall to prevent erosion at Trump International Gold Links & Hotel Ireland in County Clare. Rising sea levels also are encroaching on Trump’s south Florida Mar-a-Lago property, and according to a risk analysis prepared for The Guardian, the grounds could be a wading pool for 210 days a year because of tidal flooding. Continue reading

A big f#*k you to voters

Gary Younge, editor-at-large for The Guardian presents a laser-sharp analysis of the Brexit zeitgeist and British leadership’s WTF? happens next. All hell’s broken loose. Who’s in charge? Who would want this task? Boris Johnson says, “That person cannot be me.” Understandable. Who wants to receive a big, fat failing grade before the course work even begins? Continue reading

Escaping the cult

Last time I watched mainstream TV, I was with my sister Laura, traveling after attending our niece’s wedding. One of the interchangeable anchors asked a Trump fan about her candidate’s obvious lies. (Funny, since they all lie.) She said she doesn’t care. She likes him, will support him, regardless. Continue reading

Wanted: Daddy or Mommy in Chief

Imagine a want ad for the position of U.S. President: Seeking a Daddy or Mommy to perform the duties of the president of the United States. Based on what we’re witnessing—the venomous, venal, and vehement aspirants presently hardballing shit at one another as well as past and current officeholders—I have an image of the ad and its contents. Continue reading

Daddy knows best

According to this article, Obama’s advice to the graduates was admonitory. Though he never mentioned Donald Trump, his message was: Do not elect Trump. His seriousness was palpable, with the addition of “as I can be” to his customary “let me be [as] clear.” Continue reading

The show must go on

I thought I’d write about it. And then I thought I’d write about something else. And of course today there’s another something. There always is. By the end of this piece, I may be chasing a tangent that’s unrelated to the paragraph following this one. Continue reading

It’s a shit show!

On April 27th Ted Cruz tapped Carly Fiorina as his running mate. On May 1st Fiorina fell off the stage at a campaign rally. On May 3rd Cruz announced he was dropping out of the race. Continue reading

I’m not cheering

“Smile,” she said, “no one wants to be in the company of someone who’s sad.” She performed happiness confidently, although once during lunch at a crowded café, she looked at me, began to cry, then loudly said, “Cancer is so fucking terrible.” Her son died in 2006 and when I met her in 2009, she was grieving, like me. I was Brailing my way, wondering if anything ever would be normal for me again after my husband’s death. She and I became friends. Continue reading

Film binge

We, The Sisterhood, watched The Railway Man the other night. Tears rolled. No spoiler alert here. I’ll just tell you that the movie’s adapted from the book, same title, a true story—one of wartime torture, devotional love, and redemption. Continue reading

Here, there, everywhere, nowhere

Maybe it wasn’t the lure of adventure motivating my decision to sell the condo. Remember my telling you that when someone asks where I want to live, I say, “Nowhere.” I’ve been examining the simplicity (or complexity) of that response. Continue reading

Distract, obfuscate, propagate fear

I’m embarrassed to admit I’m watching CNN. It’s just that Laura and Erma have this huge-ass TV that consumes a wall in their living room. They’ve left with the cats for a couple of weeks and despite my affinity for a good portion of aloneness, I miss their yacking, miss hearing Laura say, “Is that not pathetic?” She asks this repeatedly when she and Erma watch ballgames as I sit nearby, trying not to talk too much. Yes, I do talk too much. Continue reading

The Hill And Don Show

I’ve told you my mother was chair of the local Republican Party for years. My father shared her interest in (or addiction to) politics. Political aspirants called, stopped by the house, seeking their advice. Continue reading

Is it you, God, or what?

I can commiserate with Heidi and Ted Cruz, on their knees for two hours. As they sought God’s will. Okay, I wasn’t on my knees that long, nor was I seeking God’s will. I was simply trying to clean the drawer beneath the oven. Condo closing is March 1st and even though the real estate agency’s sending a cleaning crew in, I’m embarrassed to leave the grime I found when I opened the drawer to remove baking pans. Continue reading

It’s war

I take the pulse of my fellow exceptional Americans by accessing Google News and just now, on Tuesday, Taylor Swift is in top position on the site, having come “full circle” at the Grammy’s. Whew. This is a relief. I’ve been worried. Continue reading

When thoughtful people think illogically

This man with whom I corresponded believes Sandy Hook and the Boston Marathon were staged and that those involved, even the children, are “crisis actors”—employed by a government whose aim is seizing guns, passing gun control laws, and creating a climate of fear. I asked about hospital staff, those who treat the injured and the spokesperson that provides information about a patient’s condition. His answer, “Crisis actors.” Continue reading

Stirring the melting pot

The latest Donald Trump controversy is a call to bar the influx of Muslim immigrants into the United States until “the nation’s leaders can figure out what’s going on.” Continue reading

Creating a particular peace

I have to compartmentalize to be happy, placing my small, personal world within its own zip code, one unrelated to the community in which I reside. Joy and equanimity arrive throughout the day—time spent with family and friends, phone conversations, email exchanges with several people who’ve become friends, music, reading, watching a series or movie on Netflix, and running. (This morning, my feet danced the gorgeous autumn leaves.) Continue reading

Let’s suppose elections mattered

Let’s suppose elections really mattered here in the USA. That I, if voting, could say confidently, “He (or she) will represent my position, will act on behalf of our ecosystem, will promote justice.” That we could enter a choice, selecting integrity, someone authentic who would take the oath and initiate the entirety of nouns pushed against verbs that formed campaign promises. Continue reading

What might does to right

A few months ago, I broke a vow to avoid talking politics with neighbors and anyone I meet at social events. My infraction invited this: “Don’t say that to me. If you feel that way you should leave the country.” The woman nearly stumbled, appalled by my lack of patriotism. Continue reading

The fundamental reality

You probably read The New York Times article detailing the sexual abuse of boys by U.S. allies in Afghanistan and were sickened to learn that it is U.S. policy to disregard what is called bacha bazi (“boy play”). Even when it takes place within sight or hearing distance on military bases. Continue reading

In order to breathe

I understand Andy Parker, the grief-stricken father whose 24-year-old daughter Alison was slain on live television in Roanoke, VA. Continue reading