Thursday, July 12, 2018

In the news

I need to get ready and maybe go out and cut brush for a little bit before going over to school and working, but a few things I've seen....

*There was a social-media post (I saw it on Twitter) thanking the "support people" in the Thai cave rescue (the people who cooked food, the people who are helping clean up the flooded farm fields, the people who cleaned the area where the rescuers were staying).

I think we do need to be reminded of that: even if you're not the equivalent of a cave-diving expert or a Navy SEAL, there is still something you can do to help - the people who few the SEALs had an important job, too, just not as obvious a one.

(I will just in passing contrast this with a famous American inventor/rich guy who seemed to keep pushing himself forward in the effort and acting as if he could be the great savior with an invention....which probably wasn't practical for this situation....and the SEALs were more like, "No, really, we got this" and they proceeded to bring all the kids and their coach out safely. And the rich guy, you get the feeling he wanted attention there...

* Some news stories do feel a bit to me like a glitch in the Matrix: Man stabs another man at movie theater. This is the big movie theater in Sherman. I've never gone to it but it's right next to where the Books a Million I know where they're talking about it.

Anyway, apparently the story goes, some guy showed up and started sitting in seats that had been "reserved" (It's been so long since I went out to a movie that I didn't even know they reserved seats). He'd get told to move, but I guess finally he got fed up and things went bad - he said "I should be able to sit where I want," the guy he muttered that to (after he had asked the perpetrator to move out of the victim's reserved seat), there was a scuffle, and the "I should be able to sit where I want" guy stabbed the other guy.

The movie being shown? "The First Purge," which I understand is part of a dystopian horror series where there's a day every year where every law - up to and including murder - are in abeyance, so you can "do what you want."

People ask me why I don't go out in public more. This kind of thing is why.

* The basketball court for kids (built with a grant from the Nancy Lieberman foundation, and I had to look that up - she's a former basketball player herself, and apparently is not related to the former vice-presidential candidate) is back open. They had to spend city money to repair it, and spend more to erect a fence to help protect it, because people are terrible.

Again, this is one of those things I don't get. How much unhappiness must you have in your heart to want to vandalize a basketball court that was build for kids to be happy and have fun?

* And also on how how much unhappiness and other stuff must you have in your heart - a couple of high-profile folks have recently been revealed using ugly slurs against other groups. I admit I've said my share of annoyed utterances about fellow drivers and the like, but it takes the form of criticisms of their behavior ("Oh, THANKS for the the turn signal, jerk" when someone turns in front of me without signalling) or is a more general insult (like, "jerk!"). I guess I was raised NOT to think those other things or to say them, and the whole "it just slipped out" excuse never quite washed with me because I think in order to SAY that kind of thing, you have to have it in your heart or your mind first. And really, my first reaction to someone is going to be to how they are behaving and not who they are.

As for "slipped out" - the ONE time I swore in front of my mom, it was one of those situations. We were driving somewhere, and a couple blocks ahead of us, one of those big electrical transformers exploded. I exclaimed "Oh, s***!" out of fear.

My mom gave me SUCH A LOOK. (I was in my late 20s at the time). But yeah, that's the kind of thing that "slips out" of my mouth in extremis.

(I've gotten better about that of late; I trained myself really hard when I was teaching Youth Group to use 100% G-rated expletives. And also, I do that in front of my classes - most students wouldn't mind a four-letter word, but those one or two who do, you have to be conscious of them).

So I dunno. Three stories about human badness and one about human goodness. That's biased, of course, by what actually *makes* the news but I would hope we would all strive to be like the people who cooked meals for the rescuers or who are helping clean up the flooded farm fields....

1 comment:

purlewe said...

I love my wife's response to bad drivers. Here is an example if someone doesn't use a turn signal: That was a marvelous turn signal, full of light and hope! (always said sarcastically.. it kind of makes us crack up)