Time was when I knew the racists were the lunch-counter owners who refused to serve blacks, the warmongers were the generals who planned wars and ordered the killing of innocent people, and the polluters were the industrialists whose factories fouled the air, water, and land. I was a good guy, boycotting, marching, and sitting-in to protest the actions of the bad guys.
At midnight I’m still waiting for my name to be called in the Emergency Room at Beth Israel Hospital. My wife, Lauren, is three months pregnant, but tonight we’re afraid she might be having a miscarriage. She’s somewhere in the system now; I have to wait outside.
“But Rabbi,” Anna said, “I know I saw him. He’s been peeking in the living-room window at me. He’s tall, and not at all well behaved. I thought angels were supposed to have halos around them.”
It’s not “dying of AIDS”; it’s “living with AIDS.” It’s not being “an AIDS victim,” or even “an AIDS patient.” Instead, we say, “He’s a PWA” — a person with AIDS.
We don’t make it to Hungry Hearts soup kitchen too often lately because I don’t like to stay in situations where Bonnie is cranky. I’m feeling guilty about it, though.
Eugene brought me here to the Barstow County Hospital night before last, and I would like to take this opportunity right now to thank all the doctors and nurses who have been so kind to me while I’ve been here, even though they know I am a murderer. I would especially like to thank Dr. Fowler (who Eugene don’t trust because he’s so young) for talking kind to me all the time and arranging for me to go to the Barstow County Mental Health Center twice a week until I get straightened out, if I ever do.