Dysmey Post Archive > Pages for 2004 > In Memoriam to Caitlin Clarke

In Memoriam to Caitlin Clarke

First, I want to go over the more personal tragedy that has occurred in my life.

Caitlin Clarke, my favorite actress, of whom I have been a fan for over twenty years and in whose honor I have maintained the Caitlin Clarke Page for a better part of a decade, passed away on September 9th in her home town of Sewickley, a village northwest of Pittsburgh. She was fifty-two.

Caitlin Clarke was primarily a stage actress, and most of her film and television work was obscure, so she is not widely known to the general public. Nonetheless she loved her work and her craft, and during the past five years taught that craft to a new generation of actors.

Of course this kind of appreciation of Caitlin Clarke took time to mature. When I first saw her over twenty-two years ago on television, in her best-known role as the heroine Valerian in Dragonslayer, I discovered her as, well, a total babe. And Caitlin Clarke was still one despite being put through the grinder by Fate.

I have a lot of regrets about Caitlin Clarke's death:

I will miss her dearly, and pray that her family, friends and students will get through this sorrowful time okay.

Three Years After the Attack

First off, let me quote my own page about the Two Towers the day after the Attacks:

Let us all pray such towers are never rebuilt!

Guess what they are building on the site of the two towers? Yes: Another tower! This sounds way too much like history repeating itself, and that's all I'm going to say on this.

Why are the Taliban still around? Why aren't they destroyed? Afghanistan is still a fragmented land, and my country's own bungling in dealing with the anarchy beyond Kabul is even scaring away the private aid organizations that the country needs.

Iraq is even worse. Good old-fashioned American mismanagement and "pragmatism" has turned that country into a sea of violent anarchy. I wouldn't be surprised if the Kurds and Shiites secede, or if Iran invades on the grounds that it intends to provide security that American troops cannot.

You know something? Our work in Iraq and Afghanistan alone justify voting Bush out of office on the grounds that he and his lackeys are incompetents. What other reason do we need? Vietnam? At least Kerry volunteered for service, no matter what he did when he was there. Bush went to summer-camp National-Guard platoons à la Dan Quayle, while Cheney cunningly boogied his way from the draft. Vietnam is a non-issue, and the fact that both parties are harping on the candidates' service is a sign of sick desperation.

Kick Florida

No matter what you think of Florida, you sort of feel sorry for those people down there. It's been hurricane (Charley) after hurricane (Francis) after hurricane (Ivan). But at least America's Block Party Pad (would you rather I call it what Homer Simpson did?) can afford to rebuild. The Bahamas, Grenada, Jamaica and even Cuba got hit a lot worse, and for those poor countries reconstruction will take a lot longer.

Copyright © 2004 by Andy West. All rights reserved. Written on 11 September 2004.