here's where it began. a few weeks ago Scott bought us some tickets to a concert. it had been AGES since i saw live music so i was really looking forward to it. we invited some friends and went out for dinner and then hit the club. first shock: we were carded at the door. i asked "is it because i look younger than 18?!" and the doorman said "no. you definitely look old enough. i just have to do this."
not that i want to look 18, but well, i want to look a little like 18...
second shock: no seats. looking around the room my friend and i quickly ascertained that we were indeed among the aged in the crowd. we were delighted to see a woman older than us who took out her reading glasses to read her iPhone (bless you angel of age). it seems young'uns these days don't require chairs. we squeezed onto the side of the stage to give our poor legs a rest and managed to have great views.
here's where i start getting angry.
the band finally (FINALLY! is that seriously the time?!) gets on stage and here's what grates my anticipatory eyes: slobs. amazing musicians - beautiful harmony and lyric and musicianship, but what the heck are you wearing? and when's the last time you looked in the mirror? and why do you all have beards like tom hanks in castaway?
i'm noticing more and more that women these days are wearing less and less and men these days are looking worse and worse (could there be a correlation?). i think of female performers i've seen on tv lately - most are wearing what look to be hard plastic swimsuits. fishnet stockings. stilettos. they look like they've been in the makeup chair for hours. their bodies are a major part of their performance. contrast that with ripped t-shirts, shaggy beards, baseball caps, the "just rolled out of bed!" look that frankly, i believe.
last night scott and i went to a movie and in the elevator we see two girls dressed to the nines - pretty dresses, sparkly purses, heels, you get the picture. and with them: boy in sweats. i'm starting to see why my mom was annoyed in grade 9 when my date picked me up wearing shorts, socks and birkenstocks.
this is my angry thought: where is the liberation? what have we been liberated to?
and do not get me STARTED on miss mylie cyrus. i've counted two magazines in stands that have headlines like "why we love mylie!". one of these magazines, 'seventeen' to be exact, sent a free copy to our house (i suppose there was a teenage girl living here before us), so i read the article. here's why seventeen magazine loves mylie - because she does what she wants and ignores the world.
wow, that's a fantastic reason to love someone. how admirable to ignore all wisdom, all mentorship, all societal practices of decorum and decency and just do whatever you like! naked!! is this seriously what it takes for a girl to make something of herself these days? justin bieber seems to have tried the same tactic and failed - nope, only girls allowed on this ride of humiliation.
this frustration is simmering.
and then, thankfully, Easter.
once again i read the resurrection story, of women, stooped with grief, carrying jars of spices to the tomb. preparing themselves for a corpse that is hardly recognizable. bowls for water to wash him, to speak tenderly to his body, to honour a man they loved with this last act of hospitality and sacrifice. what a beautifully feminine thing to do - we swaddle our babies, and swaddle our dead.
and then the shock of sleeping soldiers, a vacant tombstone, and no body.
grief added to grief.now there will be no tender goodbye. no mutual consolation between the women who loved him. no part of closure.
Mary Magdalene cannot move with the pain of it, and starts weeping in the garden.
and then a gardener....the same gardener who planted the world in Genesis and walked in the cool of the day with another woman, Eve. a man who is God, who has just defeated death, who could have proclaimed his resurrection in truly mind-blowing fashion (explode out of the tomb? come down from the clouds? fall from the sky on a giant throne?) chooses his first act of revelation to be to a woman. and not the queen mother or even a woman of noble character - no, a woman who had been demon-possessed for most of her life. an utter outcast.
he says her name "Mary" and suddenly she knows him. and her life is in that moment given incredible purpose. and all of the female sex in that moment are valued, upheld, honoured. the men didn't believe her story when she told them later (how incredibly frustrating for her!) - so Jesus didn't choose her because she was the most believable witness. quite the opposite. he chose her to reveal the worth of a woman. this is true liberation.
and i'd bet my bonnet that his beard was nicely trimmed, even having been dead for 3 days.