I was listening to Ralph Stanley the other night and I had to stop before the second song ended. Have you seen the movie, "Oh, Brother, Where Art Thou?" Not many singers can make me cry as quick as Stanley and Shirley Caesar do when I listen to certain songs of theirs. Just looking at photos from a recent piece about Ralph Stanley make me tear up, and when I hear Shirley Caesar sing "Hold My Mule," I always want to imagine her giving her mule's rein to someone so she can dust it up with a deacon or deaconess. If it were me, I'd take on the preacher, but that's not what this is about. And no, Sister Shirley is not a duster-upper. The reference alludes to women who say, "Hold my earrings" before they brawl. It took a year or so before I learned why. No, this isn't about brawling. This is about the mail that spilled from my mailboxes today. If I were Shirley Caesar, I'd have had to say, "JC, hold my mule while I get all this mail," since anyone who knows me knows that I cannot sing. I can't carry a tune in a bucket, unless I'm in the shower, but that is neither here nor yonder either.
If you've ever heard the song, as I have over the past four or five years, then you know she wants someone to . . . Wait. That's not right. She's telling a story about an old man who asks someone to hold his mule while he dances. BRB. Gotta check my facts.
Okay, I'm right. So, the old man asked a deacon to hold his mule while he danced in praise to God. It was a little like that for me today. I didn't have a mule that needed holding, but I was as happy as the John in Ms Caesar's song. Six letters,
three four postcards, and one lovely package came for me!
MY Second BLACK HISTORY POSTCARD!
IN HARM'S WAY. A HISTORY OF WOMEN WITH AMERICA'S ARMED FORCES.
1918 Black nurses fight "Great War" on two fronts. These World War I Red Cross nurses and other African American women struggled in vain to get to Europe, despite worries prejudice would "follow us to France where (our) men were dying." The Army declared the first black YWCA worker persona non grata, but for the 200,000 black soldiers and perhaps 300 women there, "France . . . furnished . . . (our) first full breath of freedom." American Red Cross * ©Women in Military Service For America Memorial Foundation, Inc.
MY FIRST BLACK HISTORY POSTCARD!
Both arrived today, but the one of Mae Jamison was delivered to my home address. I read about the nurses first though. Oops! Where are my manners? Thank you, dear Connie. Your lovely card has a perforation. Is it from a book of postcards, like mine? We have two nurses in our family, and one anesthesiologist. I remember reading how all nurses had to have such pristine morals. They were almost looked upon as nuns, which is ironic, since some historians claim that Clara Barton died of syphilis. Poor thing.
Mae Jamison made us proud here in NASA territory. A woman? So smart too. She did a lot to encourage children and especially girls to embrace Maths and Sciences. An honorary doctorate in letters? Hmm. Hooray for Mae! Thanks a million, dear Anna. Two BHM cards shot me over Mars!
I must go now. I have plans to strew my mail across my bed, get naked and roll all over it! Wait until I show you what came in the box. OMG. Until then . . .
P.S. Wait until you see what I have for St. Patrick's Day! One can never prep too early. Hope I can keep it under wraps until then. All the Irish, get ready! Catholics? Okay, all you Americans . . . Everyone get ready! Well dang. I'll have to tell what the prize is ahead of time, won't I? Be back later. Gotta think.