Archive for the ‘July 2014’ Category

a firetender's Blog

It’s time to acknowledge that there is something sick to the core of the Catholic Church in its relationship to children. It’s time to close it down. It’s time to sue it to death. Let’s leave a better world to our children by eliminating a destructive spirit.

Something in the essence of either the Church’s philosophy or its execution is terribly flawed. Its most influential positions attract disturbed individuals who then act out forms of rage against children, often expressing it sexually.

It has been so strong a part of the Church for so long — and not even approached by any other mainstream  religion in its prevalence — that at some point you just have to scream, “STOP!”

These problems are only being dealt with symptomatically by incident, and limited to financial compensation and an occasional apology.  Because of this, the Church and its clergy can no longer be…

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I made the mistake of watching one of my usual brain candy shows on Lifetime or Lifetime Movie Network. It covered the Elliot Rodger incident. As usual, I end up self-diagnosing (not that I am a serial murderer),but there was a psychological pattern  ascribed to him, characteristic of Aspies: collecting injustices.


Now, perhaps, some tend to bear grudges more so than others, but the collecting injustices might perhaps be evident in a person who remembers, say, ten years ago you snubbed me in the grocery store, or when I was four you took my stuffed blue dog away.

And for these sins against me I will never forgive you. Perhaps in my case there might be fantasies of retribution against such persons (more perhaps in later blogs).


Not that Christina Crawford of Mommie Dearest fame is any authority on anything, but I do remember a claim she made about her mother, which actually is one of the few somewhat valid psychological insights she makes in that infamous tell-all:

Mother tended to become riveted on what she considered a personal slight or insult but she would not discuss it with you.  Later, she wouldn’t remember what the explanation for it was or that it may have been unintentional. She silently brooded over the incident and carried it with her inside. She remembered only the insult, however accidental, and it grew as time passed. Usually, such a misunderstanding fades away with time. But for Mother, the process was the opposite. She clung to the image of the old hurt to her own secret image as the deprived, somehow cheated and unloved person.

That image was the bottomless pit into which you could pour years of loving, kindness, and attempts to reconciliation without visible results It failed to erase one mistake. (My words: Christina sent a telegram to her mother on her birthday rather than a card.) It put you at a permanent disadvantage. Your unpremeditated error in judgment became part of a larger aberration that existed privately in the far reaches of her own childhood deprivation, her own alienation and loneliness, her own insatiable need for love. There just wasn’t enough love in the whole world to fill her need.

Is this perhaps why I feel an affinity with Joan Crawford (perhaps one of the few places in Mommie Dearest where the real Joan actually emerges)? I sometimes feel the same way (who doesn’t at times?), but I wonder if my bearing grudges, especially against women in authority positions (no Freudian diagnosis yet, please), takes on a level that could be harmful to myself.

One example: When I was in college, I got a job as a student worker in the library working in the cataloging/acquisitions department. I was quite excited about it. It was a step up from shelving books (my high school job, and there will be a story about my tribulations which still give me nightmares working for the “old gink” Yacko in a later blog). Apparently there was some kind of transition going on in the department, and the head cataloger had to step into the position of head librarian. A part time librarian who had attended the library school (whom I shall call AH) at that campus and had worked in the library in various capacities for about twenty years or so stepped into the head cataloging position.

AH was a socialite; her husband was a famous musician. She was one of those types who went back to school later in life, got a degree; in other words, she could afford a “female vanity job,” AH always looked harried; you know, she did have that big house in the suburbs to keep up, plus function as the wife of a celebrity figure, with all the social function planning suitable to a matron of her station.

She liked me because I could file cards in the card catalog accurately. I, in my desperate and at that time unconscious desire to find maternal figures, tried to squeeze from her a motherly (or perhaps closer to grandmother, given her age) instinct. Didn’t work.

Because with my limited work experience and limited social skills, I also apparently overstepped a power boundary by withdrawing some books on a cart (the instructions were unclear; there was some relationship to books coming in as gifts; in this case, I don’t remember, even though I remember every slight and insult wrought unto me and a dream I had in second grade).


The tension became more apparent after I tried to correct manually typed cards for the Curriculum Library (those did not come from OCLC; clarify: these incidents occurred in the early 1980s) with white out. A no-no.

She also resented the camaraderie I was enjoying with the other women in the department. It was the first time in my life I could call an adult by his/her first name. I was relishing, after growing up in an oppressive Catholic ghetto atmosphere, being treated like an adult.  A coworker. The job was actually glamorous to me. Frightening and in retrospect pathetic.

One time she called and I answered the phone. She said, “This is Mrs. H. Tell Jean I won’t be into later.” Fuck you, lady. I replied, “I will tell her, A.” Ha! I called you by your first name! Ha!

She would bring flowers from her opulent garden and put them out, saying, “Enjoy! A.” Isn’t that special?

And her voice was loud, almost a bellow, that emerged from such a short, dumpy matron. And that issue fed into the main showdown.


I was out by the card catalog (which I was allowed to file in, as, really no one else could do it accurately, I emphasize), talking to a friend. I was not on the clock; I was doing some research for a paper. AH emerged from the technical services area and told me to be quiet. I, enraged, yelled back at her and said I was not doing anything wrong or disturbing. Yes,  Mrs. Loudmouth, whose voice could probably carry over the famous brass section of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, had the nerve to tell me to be quiet. Fuck you, lady, Fuck you!  I hate you, you hypocritical bitch. (Oh, the CSO reference is a hint as to who she might be.)

The new head cataloger (who was fired the next year for swearing at a nun and sleeping with a student, a friend of mine), intervened, and I had to apologize to AH, who took it like it was the least of her worries.  (For that response, I’ll give her credit for understanding boundaries and priorities; that’s why she is such a social paragon.)

Miss Slut, the new head cataloger, had the nerve to tell me I was getting a swelled head and that I wanted to run the library. I needed to be put in my place: I was just a student worker.

AH retired a year later. The faculty and staff held a retirement party for her. I told my thesis advisor, a nun who saw scholarly potential in me, that I did not get along with AH.  The nun seemed surprised.

AH is listed in the Palm Beach/Miami/Chicago society social register. There’s stuff on the web about her being in charge of dinners and women’s auxiliaries: the life of a Chicago socialite. Her husband, whom she met in elementary school, is dead. They looked like brother and sister. I mentioned that to one of the ladies who treated me like an equal. They agreed. Creepy.


I still hate her.

I did revenge myself on her a couple years after I left graduate school by calling her house a couple times and hanging up. She was home both times.

Why should I even care about this now? I claim it’s part of a larger dynamic in my psychosocial narrative that involves love-hate relationships with women in authority.


I also, and I admit I am being a self-righteous brat, I want people to know that she is not the social paragon that everyone thinks she is.

And I’m jealous of someone who has NEVER had to worry about money. She landed a talented person who ended up being rich and famous, no denying that. And as far as I am concerned, who is to say, based on her treatment of me, that she really deserved her upper middle class wealthy matron life?

Mimetic desire, to use a cliche, rears its ugly head. I should be a socialite; I should have landed a wealthy, talented person. The gods are cruel; they kill us like flies, for sport.

As a final confession, I’ll admit I’m a “meanie” because here I am picking on an elderly woman thirty years after these incidents occurred.

I’ll also admit that I don’t care how old she is or how long it has been: she is still a rude, obnoxious, phony, loudmouthed bitch, and there is someone in the world who dislikes her.

Anyone else in the world who could not stand this woman? I sincerely hope so!

Email me at if you think you have figured out who this person is.