My Blog Week: April 12 to April 18
A Word on the Week
Fatalism is the near enemy of mission. Mission is the reason we live. If we are conscious and autonomous, we can do some good for the rest of the world; if we are humanitarian, we don’t live to serve only ourselves. And the legacy we leave should not be testament to how comfortable we were. The good we do can be in acts of self-centeredness we choose to stop practicing.
Fatalism seems to attract its followers with the feel of self-sacrifice; the platitudes get picked up and passed along. What’s the point? When it’s your time, it’s your time…
But in the context of Coronus, most of us are not suffering anything dire. (And we owe great care with our attitudes to those who are.) The false choice of “going back to work” for the economy, has some obvious problems. Businesses tend to provide goods or services. The wheels don’t turn if the staff and customers don’t feel safe.
This week, party-organized protests have been getting coverage, of a too-credulous nature. Those worried over their oil fortunes might rather be human-shielded behind “grass-roots” contingents.
There’s a principle of logic worth citing. If people in the same circumstance make different choices, then the circumstance is not forcing the choice. The difference must be found in the individual. We can’t know what another person’s experience is, but we can report our own, and create helpful data. The shortages I’ve encountered in Southeastern Ohio have been of soymilk, half and half, sliced cheese, sandwich bread, frozen veg, orange juice. From week to week, everything I couldn’t buy the first time, I was able to buy later. The CVS is open, and Lowe’s is open; Kroger and Walmart. Yes, it’s a little tougher shopping, for the new queueing that keeps us all six feet apart. And yes, what I call the Dark Night of the Soul phenomenon, shoppers who for long minutes stare in indecision at the shelf you’re trying to get to (where normally you’d just dart in and grab), could be improved if we all bear in mind we’re functionally at least fourteen feet wide these days, accounting for our own girth, and clearance on all sides. While you’re holding things up, others can’t get their stuff and get home.
At any rate, eating an all-lettuce salad, or having to put oatmilk on my cereal, is a sacrifice I’ll shoulder for the good of my country. (By the way, all the work I have, and it doesn’t pay, is writing stories and blogging them, so I don’t lack sympathy for the unemployed.)
I’ve discussed on this blog what I call shadow colonialism, assumptions that run so deep they go unquestioned. As with the empire-builder’s blindness to the fact that all religions lead to God…
And so, this propagandist’s heyday, this media paralysis in the face of rising nationalism, is plenty abetted by reporters who can only thrust the mic at anyone they’re cued to label “working class”, or “rural”. Respecting the other person’s intelligence is cast by the canny political operative as unfairness. Can it be unfair? That seems a skewed and snobbish way to regard people you’ve already classed differently from yourself, as being too…what? (you decide)…to frame questions logically and account for their own actions, their own statements. Logic is in the human brain, it has never been something only the educated possess. (Never mind the pre-deciding of who’s educated and who isn’t.)
Certainly you may ask anyone, and should, is it really too much? You might save a life…do you need to go to the beach? Isn’t it fine to not go to a basketball game for a while? Do you really feel qualified to judge another person’s value to the world? Wouldn’t you prefer standards to measure against, testing for every worker, protocols for every customer, quantifiable improvements in safety? A government expected to provide these?
On Monday, Cartoon Stories, “Side Glances”, the offbeat take on the ordinary situation. Tuesday, the second German Spy episode from The Folly, an introduction to Krug. Wednesday, an Eight poem, of the Bushido span, “Honesty”; Thursday, Frédéric Boutet’s “Hippolyte”, complete, a country-house adventure. Friday, “The Blue Bird”, a reissue of a short story from 2018, that has some familiar elements. Saturday, the third Eight poem, “Purity”.
Images on my posts often have a link to related information (click first image), sometimes serious, sometimes whimsical, sometimes in answer to a direct reference. Since people can be leery about links, I include them here: what they are, what sites they point to.
My Blog Week: April 12 to April 18