Interesting Times

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Amskeptic
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Interesting Times

Post by Amskeptic » Thu Oct 21, 2021 10:33 am

We live in interesting times. I can feel it everywhere. A jangling energy. For good reasons, we are on edge as human beings, as citizens. Forces are gathering. Be alert. The tapestry of my individual life circumstances weaving into the world's is like a cloak, I feel slightly overheated and constrained. I am not alone in this ...
As an individual, I feel time, aging, impending death, more acutely. As fervently as I may wish it not to be, my body is programmed to usher me off this planet to make way for all these new ones coming up behind me. There is a fear under this. It focuses me to re-prioritize time, energy, and goals. Yet, my fuzzy central processor is getting sloppy, losing entire sectors, "what's your name again?" "what was I looking for?"
I could relinquish myself to this new dodderingness, but I shall not. My spirit is a child, it has been ever thus, and it shall be henceforth as always. But grotesquerie is a risk. You've seen them, the old people with hair dyed black, dressed as though they still had something to flaunt (YOU DON'T), the cute-to-no-one-but-your-own-imagination coquettish vocalizations, the fear of death expressed as a desperate attempt to go backwards. No, I must continue to grow, to grow up, to get more real still, to maintain vitality, learn, adapt, change, even if I feel tired so much more readily ...
And now, the point of this essay, because it is not about navel-gazing.
Our society is getting older, more tired, less-spirited, more crowded, and we walk into the world, "what are we looking for?" Our narcissistic affliction with "exceptionalism" is now ludicrous. Many of us have no idea what we as a Nation are looking for, and in private, don't care. The United States of America is now held in greater regard by the people who yearn to come here than the people who live here. How many of us understand the promise of America? No, we are a tired mature representative democracy with our "Proud" Boys and their dyed-black flags screaming coquettish exceptionalism tropes whilde drowning in corruption and malicious politics, but holy crap could we lead and be a beacon to the world, yes we could. We could continue to grow, to get more real (our past has some bad moments which we must talk about), we could change (walk right away from hydrocarbon energy and lead the world in amazing new technologies brought to you by the kids we freely educated), we could unleash vitality (I have met some amazing people) ... yet.
We don't. We are afraid of "not enough", we are afraid of death (the death of our old super-white way of life), we are afraid of change (those brown people, there are too many of them and do they have to play their music so loud?), and we have utter narcissistic idiots bellowing about freedom and our Constitution, and they do not understand any of it ... they are afraid and paralyzed ducking into tribalism.
I could be disgusted, I could be dispirited by the profanity of this moment, but dammit, this all makes sense. We have been here before in painfully human ways (with some new looming urgencies). We just have to keep waking up, we have to carry this pain, slog through the minefields of avarice and treachery, we have to be nice to "those morons", but most important, we have to step up. We have to change. We have to work harder still to find our Real, get Real, to live the values we have been blathering about in textbooks since forever. Yuck. I would rather draw little pictures, pop an M&M or two, watch some video on YouTube, but instead, I am writing Chuck Schumer, and leaving messages for Kirsten Sinema and Joe Manchin ... and watching "leaders" whose fear looks like selfishness or stupidity. I am beginning to ask, "how can I help?" Everybody I know, how can we help?
My fear looks pretty damn cantankerous.
You kids get to work!
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BobD - 78 Bus . . . 112,730 miles
Chloe - 70 bus . . . 206,865 miles
Naranja - 77 Westy . . . 132,040 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . . 55,570 miles
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JLT
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Re: Interesting Times

Post by JLT » Fri Oct 22, 2021 2:47 pm

I think that the US has nearly always been held in higher regard by the people who aspire to live here than the people who actually live here. They've rolled the dice, bet their bottom dollar or mark or franc or drachma or whatever, and come here with nothing but blazing hope. The ones who live here have, by and large, never known war or widespread famine or economic disaster in their lifetimes. They have become accustomed to thinking that this happy state of affairs can go on forever, and will go on forever, regardless of what clowns and idiots happen to be in power at a given time.

But your point is otherwise well taken. I myself have participated in the last three Women's Marches, done some election canvassing, donated heavily to political causes, and made noise. But it's been over fifty years since I've put anything of value on the line:

https://jayeltee.blogspot.com/2021/01/t ... nd-me.html

Maybe I can do that sort of thing again. Maybe not. But I'm going to do what I can to help the people who decided, as I did long ago, what the moral and proper thing is to do.
-- JLT
Sacramento CA

Present bus: '71 Dormobile Westie "George"
(sometimes towing a '65 Allstate single-wheel trailer)
Former buses: '61 17-window Deluxe "Pink Bus"
'70 Frankenwestie "Blunder Bus"
'71 Frankenwestie "Thunder Bus"

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Amskeptic
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Re: Interesting Times

Post by Amskeptic » Sun Oct 24, 2021 6:13 pm

JLT wrote:
Fri Oct 22, 2021 2:47 pm
I think that the US has nearly always been held in higher regard by the people who aspire to live here than the people who actually live here. They've rolled the dice, bet their bottom dollar or mark or franc or drachma or whatever, and come here with nothing but blazing hope. The ones who live here have, by and large, never known war or widespread famine or economic disaster in their lifetimes. They have become accustomed to thinking that this happy state of affairs can go on forever, and will go on forever, regardless of what clowns and idiots happen to be in power at a given time.

But your point is otherwise well taken. I myself have participated in the last three Women's Marches, done some election canvassing, donated heavily to political causes, and made noise. But it's been over fifty years since I've put anything of value on the line:

https://jayeltee.blogspot.com/2021/01/t ... nd-me.html

Maybe I can do that sort of thing again. Maybe not. But I'm going to do what I can to help the people who decided, as I did long ago, what the moral and proper thing is to do.
The pressing need right now, and it is pressing, is to get the non-voters to vote. There are more of them than any gerrymander dirty tricks disenfranchisement efforts could overcome. The time is now, literally.
Colin
BobD - 78 Bus . . . 112,730 miles
Chloe - 70 bus . . . 206,865 miles
Naranja - 77 Westy . . . 132,040 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . . 55,570 miles
Alexus - 91 Lexus LS400 . . . 94,225 miles

User avatar
JLT
Old School!
Location: Sacramento CA
Status: Offline

Re: Interesting Times

Post by JLT » Mon Oct 25, 2021 11:42 am

Amskeptic wrote:
Sun Oct 24, 2021 6:13 pm

The pressing need right now, and it is pressing, is to get the non-voters to vote. There are more of them than any gerrymander dirty tricks disenfranchisement efforts could overcome. The time is now, literally.
Agreed. When anybody tells you that voting isn't important or effective, always answer with "If it's so unimportant or ineffective, why are people trying so hard to stop you from doing it?""
-- JLT
Sacramento CA

Present bus: '71 Dormobile Westie "George"
(sometimes towing a '65 Allstate single-wheel trailer)
Former buses: '61 17-window Deluxe "Pink Bus"
'70 Frankenwestie "Blunder Bus"
'71 Frankenwestie "Thunder Bus"

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