by Frank Wynerth Summers III on Saturday, January 19, 2013 at 10:09pm ·
Barack Hussein Obama is to start his second term at about the time that I will be arriving for Brunch at the home on the banks of the Bayou Vermilion where a family is hosting my cousin and her newly betrothed for a brunch. All around the country people will be giving birth, being born, dying, going to houses of worship and going out to eat among other things. Millions will be getting ready to watch football with a few friends or family members. I am hoping that my manner of dress will be sufficiently and not excessively “country club casual”. I really do wish the couple well. I also have worries not everyone brings to a party of this kind when they attend. My life has left me with a little bit of what some people might call PTSD but is not reallly serious enough to be a disorder. Within the spectrum ofrisk awareness I am simply at the high end and when there are not so many factors known as unkown it is easy to worry even about security.
But while all sorts of things are on my mind I am also aware of the troubles of the country and the difficulty of addressing them. I am further aware that the USA is addressing its own set of serious crises. The countries own parties this week will celebrate the vision and hopes of one man and the team he has gathered. They will celbrate that he has been returned to office. I may have fewer enemies or more enemies thatn President Obama. I may live to see many more presidents of these United States or none at all. But President Obama will face many challenges as will all Americans in the coming years. Perhaps things will turn out very well and perhaps they will not.
Unlike my own worries, which are often tenuously connected to me but extend to people far and near who are in real danger, the worries of a President are largely structural and known I would suppose. There are so many ties between him and all those he needs to worry about or chooses to worry about. The party planners, hosts and guests in Washington are able to connect the man to a wide range of policy questions and issues very directly.
However, for me and others at more personal parties our problems risks and connections are less openly public and national. I have written here and elsewhere about the troubles I have seen. Many of those I hope the happy couple will be spared. I also hope for a better occasion on which the party will occur than the most tragic days of my life. But the party will not be world-wide news. With hostages possibly, or possibly not still in Algeria or Mali there is another factor to complicate inaugural security. However, the President has a large team to engage any perceived threat. However, those of us at smaller parties will not have large protective details. Does the inuguration matter to all of us at our varied parties?
I think it can matter and I God grants me chance I will watch all or most of Monday’s proceedings. I have not been a fan of the President and I have never voted for him. But amid my many criticisms of the man, his policies and flaws in our system I have also written about some good and agreeable qualities of Obama and his team. It seems to me the President will matter to the betrothed couple and to many others. Whether his presidency will matter much to me is harder to say. We are close in age and both have had some experiences which are both rare and similar. What will happen to either or both of us is hard for me to say. Perhaps it is impossible to say.
I do not even know all that will happen tomorrow. I am going to a nearby place to which I have never before traveled. I may be posting my last note before Monday’s big inaugural affairs. Like many American my attention is divided. But the President will matter. It is not possible to say how much he will matter but he will shape the future. Many Americans will be celebrating the future and I am also celebrating a new future. The future of a newly engaged couple is what I am celebrating mostly. Will there future be a good one? I hope so…
As I type this I am preparing to go to what may be a small or larger brunch to honor a cousin’s betrothal. I have just sealed up a gift for the occasion. These will be the last few hours of President Barack Hussein Obama’s first term legally. However, the public inauguration will not be until Monday. Monday is Martin Luther King Day. He drew huge crownds to many places including the Mall that will be used Monday. Obama is to use his bible in one of the ceremonies. I will be far from the hundreds of thousands gathering in DC. I will be with a smaller group the whole time.
I spend more time online than in large groups these days. My access to the internet is not that secure. But I trust that these virtual crowds are not like Manti Te’o’s girlfriend. I trust that his principal remaining tie to the world for me is mostly authentic. It usually seems to check out. It is easier todeal with than thousnads on the Mall would be probably. My uneasiness about crowds, groups and gatherings increases a great deal over time and more than a little bit from day to day. I have no regular job, occupational license or mortgage. I no longer own real estate and I have not even had a compensated by-line in several years now. Those factors of isolation combine with the many troubles and problems I have seen in the world to remind me of all the risks that I must face in the world. I can hope for something good to happen for myself and those around me and still be aware That I have a darkening view of the world. Yet I am drawn to try to honor a couple’s brightest hopes. Perhaps many are doing that this week in Washington. I do not know what the scene really is there. I know less and less of the scene around me…