Saturday, February 03, 2007

Everything has a beginning, a middle,

and an end. Molly Ivans met her end on January 31, 2006. What I loved about Molly was her incredible passion, whether it was for politics or people. In a column she wrote in September only months before she succumbed to cancer, she wrote this in memory of Anne Richards, former Texas governor and hellcat Dem.

"One of the most moving memories I have of Ann is her sitting in a circle with a group of prisoners. Ann and Bullock had started a rehab program in prisons, the single most effective thing that can be done to cut recidivism (George W. Bush later destroyed the program). The governor of Texas looked at the cons and said, "My name is Ann, and I am an alcoholic."
She devoted untold hours to helping other alcoholics, and anyone who ever heard her speak at an AA convention knows how close laughter and tears can be.

"At a long-ago political do . . . in Austin, everybody who was anybody was there meetin' and greetin' at a furious pace. A group of us got the tired feet and went to lean our butts against a table at the back wall of the bar. Perched like birds in a row were Bob Bullock, then state comptroller, moi, Charles Miles, the head of Bullock's personnel department, and Ms. Ann Richards. Bullock, 20 years in Texas politics, knew every sorry, no good sumbitch in the entire state. Some old racist judge from East Texas came up to him, 'Bob, my boy, how are you?"

Bullock said, 'Judge, I'd like you to meet my friends: This is Molly Ivins with the Texas Observer.'

e judge peered up at me and said, 'How yew, little lady?'

Bullock, 'And this is Charles Miles, the head of my personnel department.' Miles, who is black, stuck out his hand, and the judge got an expression on his face as though he had just stepped into a fresh cowpie. He reached out and touched Charlie's palm with one finger, while turning eagerly to the pretty, blond, blue-eyed Ann Richards. 'And who is this lovely lady?'
Ann beamed and replied, 'I am Mrs. Miles.'"

Clearly, Molly loved her friends.

Ivans wrote a hilarious column when she worked for the New York Times covering a chicken-killing festival. When she called it a "gang pluck" that was too much for the Times. She went back to Texas and after several stints with other papers, she ultimately syndicated her columns, writing mainly about politics using her "Texisms."

My absolutely favorite line of hers best sums up her life. 'Keep fightin' for freedom and justice, beloveds, but don't you forget to have fun doin' it. Lord, let your laughter ring forth. Be outrageous, ridicule the fraidy-cats, rejoice in all the oddities that freedom can produce. And when you get through kickin' ass and celebratin' the sheer joy of a good fight, be sure to tell those who come after how much fun it was.'


lushgurl said...

Today I am working on having fun!!! But really, I feel like sometimes I have to stop myself from NOT laughing...Life is too short to take on someone elses stuff.
BTW... I took from this post that I can just go on being the 'freak' that I am, they can say 'eccentric' in my obit, LOL

SCoUt said...

Texas has lost two good women in a short time period.
Loved them both.

Meg Moran said...

thank you. You have paid tribute to an incredible woman who stood up for her principles, even while fighting breast cancer 3 times!! what an inspiration for me and others who have to keep on trudging no matter what.
"rejoice in all the oddities that freedom can produce" yes, Molly, yes.