Lately, it's too easy for me to forget about MLK Jr. Day. I'm not in school, and my "job" is parenting, so I don't get the day off. Stuart works in the private sector, so he doesn't get a day off, either. This year, of course, MLK Day is pretty special because tomorrow is Barack Obama's inauguration. (Can you believe we have less than 24 hours left of the Bush presidency? It kind of felt like that would never end.)

I wanted to do something to mark the occasion, but I'm not sure what. Our local radio station is broadcasting a live concert from the Capitol Rotunda at noon. Until about half an hour ago I fully intended to pack up the kids and go to that, but several things made me reconsider. First of all, it's only about 12 degrees outside. Granted, that is warmer than it was last week by a good 30 degrees, but it's still pretty cold. Secondly, our stroller has gone missing. Did someone steal it out of the trunk of the car? Did I unwittingly leave it somewhere? In any case it's gone, and while it's not a huge loss (it was one of the cheap-o umbrella kinds), it's a major inconvenience. Thirdly, taking a 13mo and a nearly 3yo to a live broadcast in the middle of the day could be risky. Someone will probably take a big dump in his or her pants. Whining and squawking is almost guaranteed. If Anya had a regular naptime, it's around this time. Plus, if I really want to hear the broadcast, I could just turn on the radio. Brilliant.

So we'll probably just do what we usually do on Mondays. Hang around, get bored, run to the grocery store for all the stuff we forgot to get over the weekend, and if we really get desperate, go get cocoa at Borders or someplace.

Last night at church (yes, we go to church occasionally) instead of a regular meditation, they played a recording one of Dr. King's more famous sermons: "Paul's letter to American Christians." I only half-listened; Dr. King was an amazing speaker, but there's something about seeing a person deliver that I was missing from just listening to a tape. Plus, that sermon is pretty long (as Baptist sermons tend to be). There were a couple things that stuck with me, though. He talked about how we must be "maladjusted" to the ills of society, to racism. We should not be complacent and stand idly by while there is so much injustice. And secondly, don't be afraid of the consequences of doing what is right. Don't be afraid of jail time, he said, or even physical pain. Or physical death. Of course, Dr. King was not the first or last person with this kind of message, but hearing him say it in a sermon delivered in 1956, years before his own assassination, gave me chills.

I plan to have the TV on for the Inauguration tomorrow. I doubt Daniel will understand what's going on, and Anya obviously won't have a clue. But I'll tell them anyway what an important day it is and try and explain the significance of Obama's election and far we've come. And how far we have to go.

And now I have to go. There are diapers to change, groceries to buy, meals to fix.


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