maureen needs it in her life

I have like 300 ideas for how the clizzy reunion should happen so here’s a few:

  • after the entire fight with Valentine and all of the downworlders losses, clary feels like it’s all her fault. She feels like she played right into Valentine’s game and she has every downworlder’s blood on her hands. She breaks up with Simon because she feels like she’s dragging him down with her by associating with him and causing uproar within the vampires, and then kind of cut communications with everyone except Luke- because he knows exactly what it feels like, plus he’s the last remaining link she has to her mother. Jace is living with his guilt and Alec is busy as the head of the Institute, so, when Luke is busy, Clary spends her time down in the dungeon, painting and drawing in complete silence. One day, about two months later, she’s there drawing when she sees her. Izzy, training by herself n one of the dungeon cells. Clary means to leave immediately, but she notes something and says “you have to fix your posture, you’re leaving your shoulders uncovered.” Izzy is stunned for a second, and then she gives her like a small smile. “Where did you learn that?” “I had a good trainer.”


  • After the battle, Alec takes Izzy down to the infirmary, trying to find something that might help her recover faster. Simon and Clary ran into Raphael, and when Simon tells him that he somehow can walk in the sunlight now, Raphael gets very angry and annoyed- bear in mind he lost a huge part of his team, his interim chapter advisor, the girl he thought was the love of his life (YIKES), and the girl whom he blames just got her boyfriend almost back human- so he snaps, and reveals about him and Izzy and the reason why Izzy was with him or whatever. Clary is super shocked cause she can’t believe she was so far into her own angst she hadn’t noticed and immediately runs to look for Izzy. When she gets to the infirmary, Alec is not there cause he’s looking for Magnus, but Clary sees her laying on the bed, without her make up and heels, and she looks so small and defenceless to her that she starts crying, and keeps saying how sorry she is that everything had to go that way and how much she wishes she could fix everything between them. And Izzy, who was awake the entire time, SIKE!, opens her eyes and tells her how much she had missed her and they hug and promise to never leave each other again.


  • Clary, after the battle, goes to stay with Magnus and Madzie for a bit, because the downworlders and shadowhunters are both looking for her. So while she’s there, she finds out about the Rizzy bullshit from Raphael, except that she doesn’t know it was all the blood and drug talking. So Clary, even though she knows she’s in no place to judge, decides to leave the entire shadowworld- Izzy was the only thing holding her back, and she knew Simon and Luke had each other- and goes back to her apartment to see if there is anything worth taking. On her way she sees Maureen, the beautiful lesbian that sang with her and Simon every now and then, and she finds out Maureen had continued the music career thing and she has a gig in Cali, and she’s touring southeast for the summer. Clary follows her without saying anything more and no one can find her- except Magnus, but he promised his silence. When she comes back, everything has calmed down, and she’s dating Maureen and she’s king of happier?, so of course the first person she meets, while on a stroll with her gf is Izzy. And Izzy is mad, not for her being happy and having a gf, but because she disappeared with no trace, and left her confused and alone in a time of need, and Clary doesn’t get it and throws the rizzy back in her face without knowing rizzy was the worse thing of izzy’s life up until then and i didn’t think i’d get this far.
2

John & Cynthia during the Beatles’ 1st US visit February 7,1964

“At the New York Metro Fest for Beatles Fans two weeks ago, I delivered a talk called  “Cynthia Lennon:  The Real Fifth Beatle.” And with all my heart, I believe she was just that.

She was there in the basement of The Jacaranda, holding John’s microphone for him (well, a mic duct-taped to a broom) in 1959…long before Stu or Brian or Pete or George Martin ever appeared on the scene. She lovingly told John that he was “too big for Liverpool” as she watched him rehearse with Paul and George in Room 21 at Liverpool College of Art during those lunchtime sessions of 1959 and 1960. And unswervingly, she believed in his destiny to achieve “the toppermost of the poppermost” long before the Beatlettes (or even the Wooden Tops) existed. Cynthia was the first to understand and cherish John’s dream.

When Cynthia found out the she was pregnant, John immediately (immediately!) offered to marry her. And had she pressed him to leave the band and become a “proper husband and father,” I believe he would have been just as dutiful in doing “the right thing.” But Cynthia never asked that of John.

Instead, Cyn spent her honeymoon night alone – moving in to Brian’s Falkner Street flat and making a home for John, even though he had offered to take her along with him that evening to his gig. Cynthia refused. She chose to remain in the background and to shun the limelight and to give John a home to which he could always come when he was tired, frustrated, and in need of love.

During the year (August 1962 - August 1963) that Brian forbade her to appear with John in public, Cynthia acted accordingly and vanished from sight to help her husband’s career. She ran from reporters. She shielded her husband and her son. She pushed her needs aside and endured aching loneliness so that The Beatles could grow and emerge as the stars she knew they were to be.

When girlfriends joined the troupe of Beatles – as did Maureen Cox – Cynthia befriended them and made them feel welcome. She worked side-by-side with Freda Kelly to answer John’s fan mail, and she endured the torrent of fans in Emperor’s Gate for much longer than was humanly possible. Cynthia did whatever John needed her to do to help him achieve the life for which he longed.

Did John love Cynthia? Devotedly.

In January of 1964, The Beatles were appearing for three weeks in Paris. During that time, they got one day (one day!) off. The other three Beatles spent that day sight-seeing and sleeping and having a grand ole time. John flew back to London for that 24 hours to spend the time with Cyn. It was worth it to him. She recharged him and inspired him and made him whole.

And on that one day in which they were together, John invited Cyn to come along with him on his first American visit in February of 1964, even though Brian had forbidden him to ask his wife along. John wanted Cynthia to share in the excitement and the joy of his success – a success that her devotion had made possible. And she accepted. At Ed Sullivan, Carnegie Hall, Miami, and Washington, D.C. Cynthia was there.

In America, reporters tried to get her to talk. She would not. She stayed in the shadows and let her husband take the bows. She made her life about John and about John’s son, her beloved Julian. And even when she wrote her first book, A Twist of Lennon, she minimized John’s faults and played up his strengths. She was his best friend.

In Lennon Revealed, Larry Kane writes, “The romance between Cynthia Powell and John Lennon, somewhat forgotten in the modern era of Lennon remembrances – and often ignored when it was in full bloom – is a significant one for the young artist. Although the marriage was prematurely instigated by the pregnancy that brought Julian to life, there is no question that Cynthia was John’s first real and intense romantic love and that her role in his early days of creativity with The Beatles cannot be discounted.”

And Tony Bramwell, Kane notes, adds, “Cynthia was beautiful, physically and on the inside. Although she knew he was apt to find love on the road, she was totally dedicated to his success, and I might add, influential. He was insecure and Cynthia was always there to pump him up, to buttress…his weak side. She was a wonderful mother who loved John deeply.”

John’s indiscretions were ignored by Cynthia. His anger was forgiven. His focus on his career rather than his marriage was never even considered a problem to his adoring wife. Cynthia wanted the best for John, always. And that kind of unconditional love sparked “When I Get Home,” and “Do You Want to Know a Secret” and “I Call Your Name” and “It Won’t Be Long” and so many more. Even when Beatlemania began to take its toll on their marriage, John penned the haunting “It’s Only Love” for his Cyn.

Today the world has lost the Fifth Beatle. But more importantly, it has lost a true lady who made “night time bright, very bright.” Cynthia Lennon will always shine on.”

-Jude Sotherland Kessler - source: John Lennon Examiner

Musings on Madam Secretary 2.13

Excuse me while I tuck away the mountains of used tissues so I can write this week’s Musings.

What “Invasive Species” has taught me is that many families act the same during a time of crisis: fighting instead of supporting one another, yelling instead of hugging, arguing over stupid things like table linens or chicken pot pie instead of talking about what really matters. We also all have our own Maureen. Not all are as rude and acerbic as she, but there’s that one person who makes you physically cringe when they open their mouth out of fear of what horrifying and embarrassing thing they may say. Ah, family.

Maureen isn’t managing web pages or sending out newsletters as the president of the Elizabeth McCord Fan Club. We learned that about .02 seconds into the episode. Elizabeth should’ve just brought a shovel to give Maureen to better help with all the digs that woman took at her. Money. Elizabeth’s job. Henry’s success. Why the groundhog saw its shadow. Maureen basically blames Elizabeth for everything in her world. She even used the phrase “Secretary of State” as if it’s a disease or something to be ashamed of. Of course in classic form, she later demanded Elizabeth leverage her connections to find out who stole Patrick’s money. Maureen pulled the same exact antics Patrick did during his visit last season. You know what they say about the apple not falling far from the tree…

Despite her larger-than-life persona in the political world, Elizabeth is a pleaser in her personal world, or at least in Pittsburgh. She volunteered to help wherever she cold, however she was needed, but she couldn’t seem to do anything right. I’m convinced the woman could’ve brought Patrick back from the dead and Maureen would’ve found a reason to criticize her. I kept expecting to see a shot of Elizabeth’s severed tongue on the floor, cut clean off from biting it so hard. I realize Maureen is a grieving daughter with her own full set of family baggage. I’m not debating that Maureen wasn’t deeply hurt by her father’s death. I also don’t have some deep hatred for her. I actually enjoyed watching the “Elizabeth and Henry Deal With Maureen” side show. However, Elizabeth’s comment that Henry apologized for Maureen the first time the two met 25+ years ago proves this is Maureen’s personality, not Maureen through grief. Did I miss who’s older? Maureen is bossy like an oldest, but it was mentioned that they needed to lean on Henry. I’m a lonely only so I know nothing about sibling hierarchy.

Side note: Kate Burton flawlessly plays the bitch in every role. EVERY role. She makes me want to throttle her through my television. The woman needs to play on Sesame Street or Care Bears at some point, just so she’s allowed to smile.

Henry. My favorite leading man had quite the week, but he (and Tim Daly) soared. I felt for the guy. His relationship with his father wasn’t ideal, but they were still father and son. Death always exacerbates the “What ifs” of life. What if I called more? What if I went home more? What if I said this? What if I didn’t do that? Death has a way of making you see things through different glasses. Rose-colored regret glasses. The fact that Henry remains so troubled from the incident in college proves that the littlest moments are often the things that hurt the most and make you cringe, even decades later. Henry feels guilt for his relationship with Patrick, not just for the college dinner. For a lifetime of situations and arguments and non-conversations. Maureen telling him that she blamed him for Patrick’s death was maybe a look into a small sliver of Henry’s heart that fears that’s true. She also hit him right in the religion, a particularly sensitive spot for Doctor Religious Scholar. From anger to hurt to angst to despair, the range of emotion was evident on Henry’s face, portrayed beautifully by Tim. When his voice caught and he teared up, I did the same. (If Henry cries, I do, too. Apparently it’s some life rule I live by, first realized in Tamerlane.) Henry didn’t think he was the right guy to give Patrick’s eulogy. Turns out, he was the perfect one. Maureen reaching her hand back to Henry afterward as a peace offering was a sweet gesture. I’m sure she’ll continue her trollish ways, but for that moment at their father’s funeral, it was a McCord accord.

I applaud Henry’s refusal to ignore the fact that Patrick committed suicide. Suicide shouldn’t have an embarrassing or shameful stigma. Depression and its effects are real and devastating. Not talking about it is worse. Elizabeth’s admission to Stevie that funerals and burials are more for the living than the dead rings true. What we do after death is for the ones left behind, more than it is for those who died.

Through the drama and the devastation, Elizabeth and Henry stayed each other’s true constant. No matter who was at the center of the firing squad, the other was there, physically and emotionally present. Virtually every scene showed them touching: their hands together, her hand on his leg, their heads resting on one another. A physical reminder that the other is there, supportive and loving. They even have their own sweet way of holding hands, grasping a single random finger. It’s like their own silent language they can speak in public. Of course, my favorite scenes will always be their private talks, be it in bedrooms (which applies to the Pittsburgh bedroom) or on their walks. That’s where the true confessions come out. These two are the poster children for “relationship goals,” as the kids say.

I’m happy the writers didn’t just focus on the adults. Death affects everyone, and the McCord kids aren’t clueless toddlers. Each reacted in a different way. Jason coped the way any budding anarchist would by cracking into Patrick’s computer, thanks to Alison’s sleuthing. The argument between Jason and Henry in the kitchen came full circle, when Jason later admitted he didn’t want to fight with Henry. It was a sweet, poignant father/son scene, one Henry probably wishes he could’ve had with his own father. Life is so cyclical. As for Jason’s outburst, I’m not sure what that was about. He could’ve just been being a (very good) teenager, ate Pissy Flakes for breakfast or have something else going on that will be referenced later. Either way, he’s still my favorite McCord kid. Also, don’t be so eager to grow up, dude. The real world ain’t so fun. Just ask Stevie.

Which bring me to the eldest McCord. Miss Stephanie has come a long way from moving out of the house because of who her mother is. In fact, she’s now running interference to protect her mother. When Elizabeth whispered her nickname “Queen Elizabeth” (which felt like a gut punch), Stevie looked at her mother in shock. It’s like she’s now at the adult table and her eyes were opened to the messy aspect of families. Their heart-to-heart about Maureen was a life lesson for both. Elizabeth is willing to get repeatedly burned by a loved one to be part of the family. It’s messy, but it’s her mess. Leave it to Elizabeth to soften my cold, hard, black heart for Maureen. I love badass Elizabeth, but nothing beats the vulnerability that comes in her roles of mom, wife, sister, sister-in-law, etc. That said, I would’ve given a kidney to hear Elizabeth go off about Maureen and eviscerate her the way she does foreign leaders.

So apparently political things happened at the State Department. I wouldn’t really know. I tried to pay attention. I really did. I just preferred the family storyline so I didn’t invest much time into this side plot. It’s basically this week’s ISS story for me. I fear I need to eventually figure out what happened because with Nadine telling Russell she has to let Elizabeth know, it sounds like it’s going to come back at some point. Also, everyone needs a Nadine. That woman is fiercely protective of Elizabeth. Quite a road those two have travelled down so far. She’s the person you want in your corner when your life is falling apart. You’re a mess and she not only has your laundry washed and folded, the animals are fed, your Christmas shopping is done and your taxes are in the mail.

“I don’t take orders from you.” The earth shook when Nadine dropped that microphone. Of course Russell tried to take control when Elizabeth was away. He also called Matt “son” in such a condescending way, like he’s trying to assert his authority over Elizabeth’s staff. Noticeably absent: Conrad. I’m fine with that.

This was my favorite episode, by far, since “Catch and Release.” We were even treated to a Will call. If I can’t get an episode of the McCords on lockdown, I want a holiday with the McCords, Henry’s family and Will. I don’t care which holiday. Christmas. Thanksgiving. Arbor Day. Super Tuesday. Whatever. I can only imagine the family dynamics with those explosive personalities. Sign me up.

It’ll be interesting to see where Henry goes from here. I don’t think his DIA life is completely over, and the effects of his father’s suicide will continue to echo. I honestly have no idea what the next few episodes will bring… and that’s exciting.

Other things:

–I don’t know if they did, but I love to think Elizabeth and Henry were forced to sleep in a twin bed. It takes them back to their dorm room days. Another full circle aspect of the episode.

–Elizabeth took a shot of liquor to cope. I feel you.

–Elizabeth flinging herself on the bed saying “Holy smokes” was one of my favorite shots of the entire episode, and I had a lot of favorites. Hats off to the director.

–“He believed in marriage.” Cut to a shot of Elizabeth. My heart melted.

–The smirk Elizabeth made after she told Stevie “and then I fell in love with your dad” melted my heart again. I don’t have much heart left. The writers keep snatching little pieces every week.

–Elizabeth traded in her tie blouses in the State Department for an apron in a kitchen. It was such a stark contrast from her typical day-to-day persona, another little nugget of Elizabeth the loving wife, willing to do anything to keep peace with her in-laws. Which brings me back to Henry’s “World’s Best Dad” apron and their phone call from Iran. Swoon. Requesting a GIF set of both apron-clad McCords, please and thank you.

–Speaking of wardrobe, every McCord sibling wore a plaid shirt and/or a vest at some point. Elizabeth obviously married into the uniform because even she sported both. I can only imagine what the wardrobe department looked like while they shot this episode.

–The episode started in the kitchen. My heart jumps when these family scenes begin an episode.

–I agree with Elizabeth. UVA gave Henry the greatest two-for ever.

AND SUDDENLY

I am shipping Intern Dana/Intern Maureen, apparently

Like say after this whole mess is over they both end up interning together. They are at Night Vale Community College or something and Dana totally has her life together, top of her class, in 100000 extracurricular activities. Then there’s Maureen who is 400 percent done with everything and would rather be at home but needs this internship to graduate.

And at first Maureen is is like, ugh this Dana girl takes things way too seriously but she’s kind of cute. And then they start cracking jokes (about Cecil, probably) together in the break room and that turns into helping each other avoid the inevitable death of the internship program which obviously turns to loooove.

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Sometimes I think about Idina Menzel and how famous and ubiquitous she is now…and then just laugh my ass off because all I see - all I’ll ever think of when I think of her - is Maureen from RENT.  

And I’m not talking movie-version Maureen, after she got older and more glamorous and better vocal training.  I’m talking about dirty, sexy, screechy Maureen from 1994 who taught pre-teen me that bisexuality is a viable option for life and who taught the theater community that perfection can be superseded by passion.

I don’t need to hear her give a flawless performance at the Oscars or on a NYE show, because I loved her before all of that, when her baseline performance was always raw and open and a little bit cracked out.  This woman is pure performance energy and a goddess and I’m glad that the world has seen it.  But dammit, sometimes…I just want to moo with her.