Thoughts from the ammo line

Ammo Grrrll is feeling MARGINALIZED! (Thank God!). She writes:

Marginalized is a silly, imprecise word thrown around a lot by the Perpetually Furious Grievance crowd without the slightest notion of its definition, let alone any documentation that deliberate “marginalization” exists. It sounds good, in that it sounds like something bad to be, something to whine about, and something one can blame others for.

(Parenthetically, I can live with being marginalized; I just hope I am never “margarine-alined.” I’m strictly a devotee of butter. But back to our topic…)

From what I see in the tabloids week after week, being in the center of the action rather than off on the margins is more a recipe for personal disaster than a cause for celebration. You couldn’t pay me enough to be a Kardashian. Plus, even counting hundreds of “celebrities” I am only dimly aware of from the wretched magazines at the hair salon, the “A-List” people comprise a vanishingly-small portion of the population.

The amount of energy it takes to maintain one’s “A-List” status must be exhausting. I figure I’m on around the “N-List” (Nerds & Nobodies), with each passing year slipping another letter down the alphabet.

Even the most celebrated will eventually be shunted to the margins. Marquee athletes are forced to retire; movie “stars” get replaced by younger ones. One day you’re a music idol; the next day, not only is your music no longer played, the entire genre is gone. Formerly-powerful and influential VIPs find that people will no longer return their calls.

Outside of parenting, I have rarely had any power, for good or ill, over any other person’s life. (Brief conversation with 6 year old Ammo Kid after two days in first grade: ”It’s almost supper time, honey. Please clean up these toys.” “You’re not the boss of me.” “Who told you that, son? Oh my, how mistaken you are. That is exactly what I am. Now clean up these toys.”)

But, apart from that, no boss of anyone. I have never been management material; heck, I was barely employee material. For a few years in the ’80s, a mere 30 years ago, I had quite a bit of input over who got to be in an annual women’s comedy showcase at a popular Twin Cities theatre. (Answer: pretty much any woman with 10 minutes of material and a pulse.) And I hated even that amount of power. There were several people who should have been let go that I retained for years because I didn’t have the heart to fire anyone.

So, okay, little to no power: check. Despite my massive Pinkish-Beige Skin Privilege.

Here are all the cool unmarginalized things I was not: cheerleader, Homecoming Queen, varsity athlete, any kind of athlete, President of anything, Student Council Member, or rich.

Here are a few of the decidedly uncool things I was: Daydreamer, Bookworm, A-Student, Championship Debater, average-looking grrrll on my best day. A very handsome actor friend admitted once that “being good-looking is like having an E-Z Pass through Life.” It is true for everyone, but especially for women. Bill Maher once joked (paraphrasing from memory): “I went to a party with my girlfriend and this gorgeous thing walked by. My girlfriend said, ‘Would you leave me for her?’ and I said, ‘I’d kill you for her.’!”

Haha. Glad he’s not my boyfriend, and I know it’s a joke, but every average-looking girl knows there’s a ring of truth to it and it hurts. But you get over it and develop other assets such as a sense of humor, kindness, cooking skills, did I mention sense of humor?

Since Thanksgiving was yesterday, let me enumerate just a few of the blessings that have been mine, living even as I do way off to the margins: two loving parents; good health; a wicked-smart, adoring husband; wonderful, loyal, funny friends; a beautiful son; the chance to travel all over this great land for three decades plying a successful comedic trade; and, of course, this awesome country and its heady freedom and unlimited opportunity.

And there is not one screaming, hysterical protester of any color, any real or pretend gender, who would be prevented from having any of those blessings. Not one. Healthy habits, good friends, a loving partner, children, an enjoyable career – all within anyone’s grasp.

To all the embarrassing whiners manufacturing the most petty grievances, I say: Learn what’s really important. What’s the over/under on how many BLM supporters knew who “Calhoun” was before they were told to be enraged about a building named after him? And now that you know, it affects your life how, again?

Grow up; shut up; and get a life. Your massive, gratuitous rage will only raise your blood pressure and shorten that life. If you think your life will be improved away from the racist, rape-culture-y hellholes of Harvard Law or Dartmouth or Princeton, for the love of God, feel free to give up your spot to the next poor soul. Hey, maybe even to the applicant with 400 more SAT points than you whose place you took because of the color of your skin. Maybe she would have cured cancer instead of pretending to worry about John C. Calhoun.


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