Telling the Truth

connecting the dots of my life

Tag: Inspiration

Comin’ Up From Behind – Sherry Fraser/Two Ton Boa

I’ve been singing this in my head all week! My favorite line: “She’s got the truth and her tongue for a slingshot.” All put together in a rollicking score by our daughter, Sherry Fraser of Two Ton Boa. I’ve included the lyrics below my comments.

Sherry published this in May 2000 (Kill Rock Stars). It was later re-recorded by her old boyfriend, John Wozniak of Marcy Playground, as the trailer to the movie “Cruel Intentions.”

I prefer Sherry’s original recording. Not just because she’s my daughter (!), but because this is a woman’s song. It captures the anger and fury of a woman who’s being used and abused, plus her determination to “take a mighty swipe at the high hogs….” All in a lively, upbeat rag that throws the words right down there in front of you—dished up hot on your plate whether you like them or not.

I’ll never have Sherry’s voice. But I have her spirit and her determination. Thank you, Sherry, for showing me how it’s done.

Comin’ Up From Behind – Sherry Fraser/Two Ton Boa

She’s an eight ball
She’s rolling faster than a whitewall
She’s got an avalanche packed in a snowball
She’s losing all her leeches like a stonewall…she’s loaded up

She’s the underdog
Gonna take a mighty swipe at the high hogs
While they’re sipping on their tricks in a thick fog
Making eyes at the girls like bullfrogs…I’m telling you sir

She’s coming up from, coming up from,
Comin’ up, coming up from behind, yeah!
She’s coming up from, coming up from, coming up
Coming up from behind

You’d like her hanging
Like a sneaker on a live wire dangling
While your wall street pockets are jangling
With the hollow jackpot of your rich kid games

It’s a longshot
She’s got the truth and her tongue for a slingshot
But she’s taking steady aim at the big shots
It’s hard to miss the ruling bullies on the blacktop…

You better pocket your turf
She’s coming up from behind

You had her hanging
Like a sneaker on a live wire dangling
While your gold lined pockets were jangling
With the hollow jackpot of your wretched games

She caught your sick lie
It was creeping in the shadow of your white smile
Lurking underneath the cover of your bedroom eyes
Were you greasing up plans for your small fry?

You want her talking up to you
Where you float like a royal balloon-o
Your ego swollen to the size of the moon…well
I think you found somebody to cut you down to size!

Wishing you a happy weekend!

Elouise

©Elouise Renich Fraser, 23 March 2018

cracks in the pavement

she tiptoes on eggshells
of shattered dreams —
cracks in the pavement
of life after death erupt
with unexpected beauty

For all the children of the world, young and old,
who live with shattered dreams.

© Elouise Renich Fraser, 17 November 2017
Image found at lovethispic.com
Daily Prompt: Mushroom

Thank you, Anita Hill

In October 1991 I listened to your courageous testimony about Clarence Thomas. Your words took me back to my first boss. It was 1960. I’d just graduated from high school and was now a clerk in a bankruptcy court. We called the boss ‘Judge,’ though he was actually a referee in bankruptcy. He’d held this governmental appointment for years. He was about 60 years old; I was 16.

By 1991 I’d told only my husband the truth about my first boss. From the beginning, the Judge was on a mission to take me down a notch or two by way of sexual innuendo and outright inappropriate behavior toward me. He knew I was under-age, that my father was an ordained minister, and that I was a Christian. He said he was a Christian, too, and reminded me from time to time of his church membership.

I didn’t know what hit me. I got through three summers plus one full year, thanks to the friendship of other women working in the office, and the kindness of a few male attorneys who knew the Judge and witnessed some of his behavior toward me.

Back then the term ‘sexual harassment’ hadn’t been invented, or connected to Abuse of Power as an issue in the workplace. In addition, my childhood home where I still lived didn’t offer a safe place to talk about anything related to sex.

Flash forward to October 1991, and your testimony before the Senate Committee. I owe you a huge debt of gratitude for at least two things.

  • First, your personal account was the first I’d ever heard from a professional woman talking about repeated sexual innuendo and inappropriate behavior in the work place.
  • Second, your courage gave me courage to begin talking about this without fear or shame.

I’m sad this happened to you. I’m sad things happened to me. I’m sad things like this still happen every day to others.

Am I angry? Yes, I am. Angry that even in today’s reports from powerful women about powerful men, we’re still using the language of “if this is true.” Which conveniently overlooks the power imbalance that was in place when the alleged behavior happened. To say nothing of optics and the appearance of evil that seems now to be embraced, not avoided. Embraced, and laughed at in a zillion cartoonish ways.

We are not the world’s latest sleazy entertainment opportunity. We are women with every right to stand up and tell the truth about what happened and didn’t happen to us. And why it must stop now if we’re ever to be Great. Not again, but for the first time ever.

May God grant us serenity to accept what we cannot change, courage to change the things we can, and wisdom to know the difference.

Thank you for showing me how this is done. Not just then, but throughout your professional career.

Respectfully,
Elouise Renich Fraser

For a 2016 PBS News Hour video discussion between Gwen Ifill and Anita Hill, click here. It’s outstanding.

©Elouise Renich Fraser, 13 November 2017
Photo found at gq.com

early morning

A flock of small birds
speeds south
high above tree tops

Early morning sun shivers
behind gray clouds
creeping across the sky

Next to the radiator
my cat huddles
soaking in precious warmth

Sometimes I think it would be easier if I were a bird or clouds or a kept cat. Then again, I don’t think that would be nearly as adventuresome as getting up each day wondering what it will become by nightfall.

I don’t know why I’m the woman I am, why I was born into this skin, or why I had no say about the family or country into which I was born.

I used to fret about this, as though things would be better if I were someone else. Born to different parents, at another time and in another place.

Today I love who I am as one of God’s creatures. Small, yet as precious as the smallest hummingbird making its annual migration from North to South. Flying, not tiptoeing my way into the next season of my life. Held in God’s large hand.

© Elouise Renich Fraser, 9 November 2017
Photo found at pinterest.com
Daily Prompt: Gingerly

Photos melt my heart | Photos #2

1972 Aug Travell'n in style Scott and Sherry

Our two chipmunks at a rest stop somewhere in Texas, waiting to be fed! 1972

As noted in my last Faculty Wife post, our Bible College days were numbered. In 1972 we took a road trip across the States. Among our planned destinations was a seminary in California. D was considering his options, in case we decided to leave the Bible College.

But how would we travel safely with our young children? In the early 1970s most car seats for children were worthless in an accident (according to Consumer Reports and photos).

Of two acceptable options, one was the Sears Safety Harness. It was a bargain at less than $15 per harness. Among other things, it allowed children to move around and lie down to sleep during long trips. You can see the harness here, on our daughter (scroll to last photo).

It took a while to install the two anchor straps around the back seat. But when we attached the harnesses to the anchor strap, the harnesses moved easily up and down the strap. We put our baby crib mattress across the back seat of the car, put the harnesses on our children and hooked the harnesses to each anchor strap.

Voila! Not only could they move around and lie down to sleep, they could see out the windows–just like the grownups! They could NOT stand up and they would NOT be thrown forward or sideways far enough to hit their heads.

Take a look:

1972 Oct Scott asleep in the back seat with safety harness on 2

 

1972 Oct Scott with safety harness on

 

1972 Oct the backseat traveln bed set up Scott and Sherry

Do these photos make my heart melt? Absolutely! I loved having our children free to play games, sleep, look at books, watch the scenery or whatever else their hearts desired.

This road trip and others like it are among my favorite memories. Even though we had occasional melt-downs, these were great adventures.

Here we are in Bryce Canyon. I think this was our daughter’s first introduction to Bartlett pears that I hadn’t already cut up and put in a small bowl. She’s likely thinking something like this: ‘Do I have to get my hands and face messy?’

1972 Jan Bryce Canyon Elouise and Sherry to pear or not to pear
Our son’s eyes (see below) crack me up! Learning by example? This may be one of the most enjoyable lessons he ever had, or that I ever offered. As always, he’s ready to chow down, mess and all! Fashion note: I’m wearing one of D’s shirts under my tank top. It’s a bit cool outside. Also, just above, don’t miss the hip blue jean decoration I sewed onto my jeans and D’s (see last photo).

1972 Jan Bryce Canyon Scott and Elouise chowing down on pears

Finally, my beautiful hairy beast husband (It’s summer and we’re not at the Bible College!) with our sweet children at Bryce Canyon’s Inspiration Point. A fine setting for the three people who inspire me more than any others in the whole wide world.

1972 Jan Bryce Canyon David Sherry and Scott

That’s all for now, folks!

To be continued….

© Elouise Renich Fraser, 15 October 2015
Photo credit: Elouise (Inspiration Point photo); DAFraser (all others)

nest in clover bank

nest in clover bank
sleepy summer afternoon
salty river smell

* * * * *

I’m 8 or 9 years old—
a budding writer looking for somewhere to write
and something to write about. Read the rest of this entry »

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