Gulf Shores

Gulf Shores
Photographer Patricia Gulick

Monday, May 13, 2013

3-10-13 RMB They Got It  
Dear Rita Mae Brown,
When I started this I thought I had something I HAD to say to you. It was a mixture of appreciation, recognition and admiration. Then I realized that for all you’ve done, I haven’t ever seen you on TMZ or the likes, could be that’s because I don’t watch TMZ. Although, I am sure I would have heard something if you were out there drawing massive attention to yourself.
I can see these letters are to you first, for me second and for whoever stumbles upon them eventually. From another angle, I can also see how they are for whoever stumbles on them, whoever needs them, or connects with them first, for me second and for you last. They will last longer than either of us, whether tucked away in a niece’s trunk of her crazy aunt’s musings, or in print, on the internet, wherever.
I’d like to know they have touched you in some way. Remember how I told my friend she would literally thank me some day? I don’t see that, but I see a reaction from you down the line. No, not in a restraining order kind of way.  A sense of accomplishment is the best way I can describe it.
Somewhere down the line, something resulting from these letters will register a tranquil feeling for you that says “They got it”. It may only be one small point in a sea of junctures, something that we “got". It may not be a direct result of the letters, but a domino that falls into place somewhere in the future.
I see you driven by something beyond any person’s accolades, beyond recognition, or gratitude. It is innate in you to do what you do, to be who you are. Yet, there is a connection. You did not draw within and make your mark inside a cave or on a deserted island.
You gave it to us, shared it. I don’t think you did it primarily for yourself. But you did it. This is yet another way in which you are unique. The overwhelming majority of human beings will act for themselves or their interests first, others last. It is not as black and white as that sounds and there are minor exceptions, I know. It is also not conscious, we are not bad people because of it. We are human, instinctual animals.
As smart as we think we are, more often than not we do what we do, then we think about what we have done. Not the other way around. Much of what you did, throughout your life, resulted in backlash. Even in the face of the uproar, you carried on. It is rare for an individual to face what you did and continue as you did. You looked ahead as much as behind. You examined what worked, what didn’t and how to move forward, whether aware of it or not there was a certain future ahead of you that you were going to reach come hell or high water.
You didn’t sway from your destiny. You bravely faced it. You intelligently monitored it. You instinctively marched on.  You did it for the greater good, for us and for yourself, not any one of those more than the other, not any one of them less than the other. Pardon my forwardness, but that is the makings of a hero.  Most of us, from the worst of us to the best of us, have moments of heroism. Some have much more than mere moments.

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