Sunday, July 25, 2010

An eyeful from Lady Chatterley

Hello, friends - near and far, known and unknown.

Today is yet another sunshiny and gorgeous day. After sleeping in 'til noon, I'd thought it a good idea to go outside and soak up some of that lovely, fresh air. And, you know, the free Vitamin D that the sun gives away....just another penny-pinching tip from Little Miss Sunshine. Always looking out for you - and your wallet!

Packing up my wallet and my newest library find, "Lady Chatterley's Lover" by D.H. Lawrence, we headed off to the mall for some portable insecticide (read: bug spray). While there, we ran into a neighbor of ours, from Tipperary, Ireland. He's a squat old fella, with sharp wit and a keen nose for the ladies - though I imagine there's more to it than his nose.

We talked to him for quite some time. He regaled us with tales of home, the women he's loved and the innumerable children said women have borne to him. No stranger to the dirty joke, I learned quite a few new euphamisms for everyone's favorite bedtime activity.

I'm saving them all for the next big family dinner.

Then, he told us about his wife. Disabled and diabetic, she died recently. He shared with us how they'd met, fell in love and married. He said something that struck me; stayed with me all day. He said, "all women are beautiful. I always thought my wife was gorgeous, even when everyone else thought I was crazy."

I said nothing (I know; I was shocked, too!). We chatted some more, and parted ways.

On the way to the park, I ruminated on his thoughts; talking to no-one in particular, really. It appears to me that the only chance for life-long acceptance, love and happiness for a disabled (heterosexual) woman is to marry an Irishman. Sainted Husband laughed aloud at this (as well he should have, it's funny to me now, just writing it here).

I asked him: "what is it about you Irish men? You  really couldn't give a ----. It's never been about my wheelchair, neither was it for our Tipperarian and his lady love." I further listed several men I'd met on my travels in the Emerald Isle, all who loved and accepted me in quite the same manner. We talked (really, I talked, he agreed - beautiful conversation that!), and I asked yet again. Was it a fluke, or was there something in the Guinness?

His answer: "I think I smell a blog coming on, my love".

If current statistics are true; 96% of women with disabilities remain single and unmarried their whole lives. 50% of those that do marry subsequently divorce, which leaves 3% of the entire female disabled population who get married and stay married.

I bet every single one of them went to Ireland.

I wasn't originally going to blog. I was going to count myself lucky, roast Dear Sainted Husband a chicken and shut up about it.

Enter, 'Lady Chatterley's Lover'. Well, really just Lord Chatterley. I got as far as page two (not counting Foreword, Preface and Introduction), and stopped dead in my tracks. According to D.H. Lawrence, literary officionado of his time, 'crippled people' have a 'slight vacancy in their eyes'. And I quote.

Say whaaaaaaat?

Excuse me, Mr. Lawrence, but the vacancy of which you speak is most certainly not in my eyes. It is in my mouth. Where those words used to be. You stole them, and now I'm speechless.

Apparently the whole point of this story is that poor, sad Lady Chatterley has married a man who is 'sterile' as a result of war injury and can no longer satisfy her in chambers. So, Lady Chatterley takes up with the handsome and robust groundskeeper to quench her corporeal thirst.

He is of course, the subject of many 'ilicit' bedroom scenes of 'pornographic nature' (oooh, did you do it with the lights on? Go on with your BAD self!). So says Lawrence Durrel, author of the Preface. If 'caressing the secret wonderland of her waist' is porn, then I am Pamela freaking-Anderson, okay?

For real? This is the 'literary pornography' that is banned from libraries and public reading for hundreds of years, on account of its 'moral questionability'?

Rich lady taking up with the gardner. How unoriginal. How very "Desperate Housewives". I am appalled. Actually...I'm laughing.

But still appalled.

But I must admit for one guilty, self-indulgent moment, That it made me think. I'm the poor, sad, 'sterile' Lord. Do people look at my Dear Sainted Husband and wonder? They must.

But I think, for now I need to put the book down, step away and remember that 'all women are beautiful'. Even the ones who take up with the gardener.

It's just a book, and my eyes are quite full, thank you very much.

Later, I will read...and see if I can work some of Lady Chatterley's 'moral questionability' into our friend's zingy one-liners.

So much for low-brow comedy.

All my love, friends.......xo

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