Thursday, May 01, 2008

May Day

Hooray, Hooray, for the first of May,
outdoor ____ing* starts today!

*Ask your parents, kiddies.

Today is May Day. First day of summer, if you require a calendar date to determine summer, rather than relying on what's going on in nature where you live. Don't give me any of that nonsense about the summer solstice marking the beginning of summer; even in England, which is far cooler on May Day than where I live, the summer solstice was always called Midsummer, not Summer's Beginning.

Anyway, just a brief check-in. Monday, when I found that message asking about Hogwarts scarves I just googled for a site that would have pictures of the process in question. The first site that came up was Deep Fried Kudzu. I liked the name well enough--really, isn't that one of the best blog names you've ever heard?--that I later went back to browse it a bit. I can not claim to have explored it thoroughly, but I want to recommend it anyway. It looks like a pretty darn good blog. There's a list of restaurants the author has enjoyed, recipes, pretty photos of home-y (home to me, anyway) places, and I saw links to several interesting things. Including this article about a North Alabama woman called Aunt Jenny.

...Aunt Jenny walked outside, pointed at her husband's killers and said to them that she knew every one of their faces and they would get what was coming to them. She then called her surviving sons to her side and made them place their hands on the lifeless bodies of their father and brother. She made them swear eternal vengeance for their deaths. Legend has it that all the men responsible for the death of Willis and John were sent to their graves by a Brooks boy. Some legends state that Aunt Jenny herself even killed a few of the men.

I enjoyed reading that passage more than a Christian woman probably ought to. It is rather fine drama, and I think you can make an argument that the behavior described is pragmatic, in that the best way to avoid being messed with in the future is to make people very, very sorry for having messed with you in the past; frankly, I would prefer for my country's leaders to adopt the tactic of making people very, very afraid to attack us.

As a hater of impertinent questions, I also liked the anecdote about Aunt Jenny on another site (sorry, I didn't save that link and I'm not looking for it now) that has her, upon being asked how she came by a roll of money she was carrying, saying she paid herself twenty dollars a week just to mind her own business.

Florence King said that there's nothing wrong with Women's Studies that studying the right women won't set right. Aunt Jenny sounds like one of those women.