mayo 24, 2004

Re:Another Evil Stepsister (Anna to Cara-edited)

....Me, of course, writing from my belovedly inefficient latin american home
and dreading more and more everyday the prospect of going back to that
wretched country in which I had the misfortune to be born. Granted, it's nice
to be able to buy groceries and waffles at any hour of the day (hell, I can't
buy waffles at all here; but I did find bagels!), but I'm not sure it's worth
the trade for millions of gallons of foreign blood, poisoned air, a military
state and gun-toting idiots who couldn't compose a coherent sentence trying to
lecture me on the intellectual foundations of our revolution. Whew... sorry,
I am, admittedly, from the same part of the world as William Faulkner: just
can't stop myself when I get righteously pissed about something. Amazingly
enough, the US news is even more shocking and ridiculous when viewed from
afar. I was a little disappointed and a little horrified when my mom told me
she thinks Susan's reactionary about the controversies there because she
doesn't 'hear the other side that balances it out.' What balances out locking
up your own citizens and throwing out the Geneva conventions? I'm living in a
country that's done it, and I don't think they recommend it. Randy and I talk
really often about how the beginning of the military dictatorship here has
some eerie resemblances to what's going on there (minus the history of cout
Since I only have a couple of months left here, I'm having a really strong
ambivalence. I want to do as much as I can that's really Argentine and not
think about the US, but it feels more inevitable everyday to get on a plane
and not have any idea when I'm coming back, or how long I have to live in the
US again. All this supposed life-altering change you're supposed to go
through when you study abroad actually seems to be playing out; not that my
views have changed, really, but that I'm coming to accept the long-latent fact
that I may be uncapable of living the rest of my life there. Isn't it nice
when you can still delude yourself into thinking that since your values are
right and good in your mind, and you respect other peoples rights and all that
jazz, that the rest of your country feels the same way but just doesn't know
how to show it? Haven't we all had boyfriends like this, too? So, I think
I'm about at the proverbial breakup with feeling any kind of solidarity with
'the American people.' I used to hang onto thinking, 'but if people really
knew this, they would be as horrified as I am.' Now I accept that that's just
not true (recent epiphany thanks in part to the Michael Savage article on
Salon). I know that some people are just bad (hard to accept, giving who my
mother is) but it was a much harder process for me to realize that quite
possibly, at heart, most of my country is bad.
Now, now, I am going on and on and on. There are good, real, worthy people,
such as yourself, who hail from the US (mind you, I can't bring myself anymore
to just say America; all the latinos chuckle at the way we do that). Maybe I
could carve out some little space of meaning surrounding myself with worthy
people, meaningful work, a nice garden and a dog. That would be okay. But do
I want to flee from the rest of the world? There are terrible, awful things
to hate about this country too. Just that I'm getting nostalgic about them
because I have to leave soon. And no matter what I do, the only US things I
can get nostalgic about are: Torpe, Cleo, you, selected other family members,
all night diners and Indian restaurants. I concur with your earlier proposal:
we in fact should take over an island and start a happy tree-hugging,
queer-loving, UN-subscribing revolutionary nation; and the best part is we
won't massacre the natives! Didn't know what you were in for when you opened
this communication can of worms back up, did you? It's just kinda rare that I
have people I'm close to to talk with. The home life is great and all, but
how many times can you say, 'remember how we hate the US? yeah, I still hate
the US. whadda ya want for dinner?' before it rings a little stale.
Should wrap up with some kind of alacrity because I gotta meet Randy at home
to see how the investigations into replacing his passport went. Probably bad,
seeing as how the US is involved. Tomorrow's Homeland/Independence day here.
I hear there are military parades and hot chocolate with the president and
school children in Plaza de Mayo. Then exams till I choke. Good luck with
the readjustment to the parental house life.


ps - Randy also misses you a lot, but doesn't get as much chance with the
computer because internet's free on campus and costs out the ass at home.