I was born on Friday, Twenty-six October Nineteen Sixty-two. I just squeaked in although my Mom probably won’t describe it as such (I watched my Bride bring our three daughters into the world, mothers have my respect). A little Southeast and two days later, big events wrapped. The communists pointed their ships northeast and went home. Disaster diverted. I was a bit of light into a dark and hostile world.
Growing up on King Street, the streetlight cued us to head home. We grew up riding our bikes, all over, without helmets. Our water came from the garden hose of the neighbor, throughout Arbuckle. Meals were distributed by our mothers with other husbands (our other dads) while our birth moms smiled, anticipating their turn. I was a guest on numerous trips up toward Stonyford, terminating at Bonnie View, transported in the back of a Ford F-150.
The Vietnam war was half a world away. My friends and I didn’t give it much thought. Those somewhat older than that did, rebelled, grew their hair long, and shouted things like ‘make love not war’ (the peace sign was born). They took up a lot of the nightly TV news with their protests. The fighting and carnage also found its way into our homes and living rooms for the first time. It has only grown from there.
The world that I have grown up in has been one of wars and rumors of wars. It was easy at one time when it became too much just to get up off the couch and turn the tv off. It might be good to go back to those days when our concern was the amount of television we watched.
How would one know of days past when visual news was only available on the big screen? Newsreels shared things from around the world before the main picture at the local movie theater. Something from my lifetime, the Saturday night double feature and cruising afterward. Today, the itty-bitty screen gives me a headache and seems to be a permanent attachment to the populace’s appendages. I am going to avoid the other places the smartphone spouts up.
We are now chained to those devices. They hinder our freedom and growth. It would be enlightening to have news at our fingertips. Sadly, what is there is anything but edifying. We are constantly being bombarded with numerous personal opinions. I am capable of a civil discussion of views. You have crossed my line when you feel the need to publish a constant stream of propaganda and scream in my face.
I live in what I will argue is the greatest place on earth. Those of you, my neighbors, make it such. We share that alike that makes us human. Just an hour south at the capitol, I am not sure they get that. We should be turning out propaganda and screaming in their faces, but I have already covered that. I did something usual, watched TV. Well, the latest tech. I observed a situation that ignited. Not too long ago, I would have exploded being in their shoes. It was humbly extinguished with three words; “love and kindness.” Now that’s what I’d like to leave in my wake. Don’t forget the rays and fresh air. ■