Tuesday, June 21, 2011
I find myself attempting to mend these days my girlfriends. You see as all of you know, my beloved city was violated beyond belief last Wednesday all in the name of… I’m not sure what. Please don’t get me started but a vile bunch of degenerates felt the need to make a point and here I am left with trying to make sense of it all.
I know this blog has its reputation as a girl who can laugh anything off. Hell we’ve spent the last year and a half bantering back and forth like girlfriends. I talk…. You listen. This is the agreement we made so many months a go. But now I find myself a little less in the mood for laughter and Louboutins and a in need of a few lines of reflection and resolution.
It’s been a shitty week. I live in the heart of downtown Vancouver and each day I walk by the aftermath. That was my Chapters and my London Drug, damn it! This was my living room and some bullshit kids marched in on a rampage in the name of history or freedom or just getting caught up and they acted like savages.
I can rant on about the insanity and the vulgarity of it all but I suspect all has been said in a much more eloquent way than I could possibly manage. These people were just plain awful and I have no longer the words nor the insight to put this in its right place.
I know the psyche of my city will mend. I know that its citizens will heal. I’m a doctor and doctors know the capacity of the human spirit. I’m a diva- as a diva I realize the power of a good outfit to elevate and transform.
A study published in the journal of Personality and Individual Differences in March of 1998 attempted to examine physical attributes of PEACEMAKERS at a sports riot- those who would intervene to stop the riot.
One hundred and thirty male spectators attending a Finnish ice hockey game were asked to indicate their response to a fight erupting nearby in the stands. Fully 61.1% indicated they would watch, 26.2% would try to stop the fight, 5.6% would leave the area, 4.7% would encourage the fighters and 2.4% would join in.
I thought about this a lot as I watched some of the videos of the riots… where were the women? I thought. I noticed in the footage the obvious lack of a female presence in the crowds. Was rioting strictly a “male dominated sport”?
In fact if you look at history there are a variety of papers written about the disparity of female rioters throughout history. This was obviously a cultural issue back int the Detroit Riots of the in the 1940’s or the Memphis riots in the 1880’s or those at the turn of the century in Russia. These were times when women’s rights in general were an issue. Women could not have any voice let alone a violent one and so I am not surprised by this.
But if you look at the riots in Los Angeles in the early 1990’s or the Vancouver city riots in 1994 or in 2011- Where were the women?
I am not upset by this. I’ve always assumed that as women we are far superior (sorry boys). But it is an interesting phenomenon that such a disparity exists. Is it that we have better things to do? Are we just by nature less violent?
I’m not sure what it is an I suspect I will continue to ponder this long after the glass has been replaced and the charred streets washed and rewashed again.
I don’t’ know if there is a lesson in the Vancouver Stanley Cup riots. I’d like to think that the lesson was the day after when the streets were filled with thousands of Vancouverites ready to help clean up.
I know that all too often as human beings we focus more on cleaning up the mess than preventing damage done. We suck at thinking ahead and spend much of our lives dealing with one aftermath or another.
I know my sense of hope and optimism is only slightly bruised but most definitely not battered. There will be many more days ahead some disappointing when it comes to other human beings. Some people will not measure up for me and others will exceed my expectations.
This city has taught me so much and for that I am grateful. Vancouver gave me a new way of life when I moved here and I will never be able to repay the favour.
My city was wounded and I was unable to prevent the hurt.
For now…. I continue to walk my streets and drink my coffee and live my days in defiance and wonder. This is my city and one that has been ever so good to me. There may be uncertain days ahead- but I believe in my city. I believe in Vancouver- in its goodness and in its magic. I believe that everything gets wounded around the edges and comes back to be stronger than before.
I believe in you, my dear girlfriends in your love of all things fabulous. You are my positive little deviants. Now get out there and live your life - do good unto others and do me proud.