She understood female friendship, complicated men, and domestic engineering better than most of us ever will. I don't love Lucy, and I never dreamed of Jeannie—but Wilma Flintstone could probably get us out of Iraq and end global warming simultaneously. The question is this: Are we as a nation ready for a cartoon cavewoman in the White House?
And speaking of the White House, I'd like to thank Chelsea Clinton for appearing to be a normal human being when it would be oh so easy to go a different way. If anybody's earned the right to exit a limo without underpants, lord knows it's her. There are no words for how grateful I am not to have to watch as she checks out of rehab to attend a Golden Globe party or serves 41 minutes in prison for shoplifting a leg of lamb in her Marc Jacobs bag or fights for custody of Anna Nicole Smith's baby or weighs in at 83 pounds of solid denial. Bless you, Chelsea Clinton, for never presenting Victoria Beckham with anything at the MTV Awards.
I know Don Cheadle isn't a woman, but I just saw a documentary called Darfur Now and it made me like him so much that I've decided to bestow upon him an "Honorary Girl" title. He is whip smart and fiercely committed to alleviating misery, so I say we hand him a DVD of The Way We Were, teach him the secret handshake, waive the membership fee, and start letting him into the meetings.
"My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total. And I am not going to sit here and be an idle spectator to the diminution, the subversion, the destruction of [it]." The late, great congresswoman Barbara Jordan said that. I only wish other Texas politicians shared the sentiment. I miss her. And I miss Ann Richards and Molly Ivins, too. I miss nobility and wit and idealism and style. And more than anything, I miss being the country that thinks waterboarding is a really bad idea.
I met Jan Frank in kindergarten more than 42 years ago. We starred in the Fred D. Leonhard Elementary School production of The Wizard of Oz, she as the Wicked Witch of the West, me as Dorothy...okay, fine, Suzie Daitch was Dorothy, I was Winkie Girl Number Seven, and for those of you playing the home game, that's a notch below Munchkin...not that I'm bitter. We read Go Ask Alice, we survived our Bat Mitzvahs and driver's ed (which went better once Jan was able to stop shrieking long enough to take the wheel from me), we broke up with boyfriends, buried our grandparents, raged at our mothers, erupted in geysers of emotion, got our teeth fixed and our complexions under control. I was the maid of honor at her wedding and she was at the hospital before my daughter was six hours old. As I sit typing away on this rainy Monday afternoon, Jan, my lovely, dynamic partner in crime, is at a different hospital. Right about now, she is having a rare form of sarcoma cut out of the area just beneath her left collarbone. I wish that I were with her, but she's got the world's best husband for that particular assignment and so I do what I know how to do...I wait patiently, worry endlessly, and pray to a God whose existence I doubt regularly. I'm tired and pissed off today because it's pouring and because Jan has three magnificent boys at home and because this should not be happening to my oldest friend. But then I remind myself that if we have to, we can do anything. We are strong, and when one of us isn't feeling all that invincible, the other will take the wheel. We are women.
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