Connection is such a tenuous thing, physically or emotionally. You want to connect, to trust, but how do you know when the connection is toxic, or failing, or broken?
Each day, I try to tiptoe around the world for as long as I can, but the internet has made this challenging.
It’s a Catch-22, if I don’t connect to the internet I drift apart from the world, but if I connect to the internet, I’m bombarded with stuff : news, ads, studies, misery and success, and just, well, stuff.
Page after page, link after link of:
People with diseases and those pretending to have diseases, really? Pretending to have a disease? Stuns me every time.
Finding life on other planets – shouldn’t we concentrate on keeping what little intelligent life we have on Earth first?
What’s getting deflated? Definitely not the egos of athletes!
Governments lying to us again…still?
Bragging, boasting, whining, complaining, rudeness, trolls and trouble.
Turtles and snakes in toilets, transformed food, books, social media, movies, cats, TV, music, royalty, and endless things going viral we won’t remember next week.
Hoaxes, scams, and stunts, aarrgghhh, my head is spinning!
NSA, CIA, IRS, CSIS, OMG, ISIS, UFO, LOL, NASA, it might be fun to stay at the YMCA, if we weren’t drowning in abbreviations.
Studies explaining things they think I should know, like: food, drinking, sleeping, the environment, politics, parenting. I figured out parenting, at first you’re disoriented, exhausted, scared to say or do the wrong thing, a bit like being abducted by aliens, then you realize, they’re adorable aliens, like ET and then, they have you, you have X-Files Stockholm Syndrome and you can’t get enough…or wait, is that politics, not parenting?
Ads and commercials for things we don’t need, but apparently should want more than breathing.
Remember in Poltergeist, where the eldest daughter is standing in the street screaming, “What’s happening?!?”…sometimes, that’s me, inside my head.
Don’t get me wrong, despite my woes, I’m happy to wake up alive every morning, as opposed to waking up dead, which is most inconvenient and usually alters your plans, not only for the day, but the foreseeable future. Yet I’m struggling, dear readers, to find a balance between using technology and being consumed by it. I suppose it’s the same with any relationship, you need boundaries, compromise and…
1. Mutual respect. If you’re feeling bad when using the internet, take some time away, explore other interests.
2. Independence. If you depend on it for everything, it’s likely to let you down one way or another.
3. Dreams. Does it inspire you to write that novel you’ve always talked about writing, talk to an old friend, travel, try new things, explore, take a chance…dream?
Perhaps sometimes you have to drift to make connections; strong connections, not overpowering ones.
Common sense, kindness, compassion, hope, love, a sense of humour, and caring, combined with the dreaded ‘m’ word, you know, moderation might be the answers to all this confusion. Those things should never change.
Sometimes it astounds me, but we still believe.
It doesn’t matter whether they tell us it’s new and improved, a new formula, a new design, it’s soooo much better…and we believe.
Commercials, polls, experts, ads, doesn’t matter how wrong they are or how much they’re lying…maybe we just want to believe.
Too many ‘studies’ have been commissioned by those who will profit from the findings.
Dairy was best for you, no, dairy is evil.
Eggs are worse than terrorism.
Chocolate makes you fat; dark chocolate is good for you, no it isn’t, yes it is…yes…it…is!!!
Cancer is caused by everything, so here, take these seeds, drink this, no, don’t, yes…
Olive oil is a god.
You’re too fat or too thin; to some, you’re both.
Your hair is the wrong shade and give it a minute, yes, the style has changed again – get thee to a hairstylist!
Headphones should always be small and discreet, now they should cover a large surface of your head.
Cellphones had to be large; then small, now smaller, now smaller, now bigger, bigger, now so huge they barely fit in your hand. And don’t forget, you always need new accessories.
Experts tell us how to parent, this changes drastically depending on who you’re listening to, in what year. Most importantly, everyone you talk to is right.
Breast is best except when it isn’t, then formula a corporation says is best, hope it isn’t contaminated, and of course, it can’t be dairy (refer to the above, dairy is now evil).
Where do babies sleep on these days, their back, side, stomach, sitting up, in a special floating hammock?
When should they get solid foods, start talking, walking, and don’t forget to turn them all into baby Einsteins.
Dieting advice, ads, etc. is even more complicated than parenting – eat everything, then nothing, eat this, don’t eat that, balance on one foot, drinking water, singing Queen’s We Are The Champions, the pounds will just melt off.
I can’t even watch a detergent commercial without thinking, “Now they show you how detergents take out bloodstains, a pretty violent image there. I think if you’ve got a T-shirt with a bloodstain all over it, maybe laundry isn’t your biggest problem. Maybe you should get rid of the body before you do the wash” ~Jerry Seinfeld. That’s about how seriously I take advertising.
Polls all skew their questions to get the answers they want and let’s be honest, people lie. Why even bother?
I understand that with time, research, testing, etc. we know more and sometimes even know better, but please we need check our sources. Then again, who can keep up and do we really want to?
Every day I’m told I’m stupid. Repeatedly. It can be exhausting and difficult to handle, but I’m sure it’s for my own good.
Governments practically scream how stupid I am from the rooftops. Apparently lying about everything and making rich people richer is more important that taking care of all the citizens, more important than eradicating poverty, feeding the hungry, affordable housing, good jobs, education, healthcare, ending wars and conflict, or treating people with dignity and respect. If I don’t agree, that’s because I’m stupid, I don’t understand their brilliant plan, which seems more like an overly elaborate Scooby-Doo plan that never turns out properly and if it does, it’s quite by mistake.
I don’t understand why so much money is spent on politicians, their cronies and bagmen; on ads promoting themselves; red tape, then again, what do I know, I’m a delicate flower, I do declare without all these rich men telling me what’s right I doubt I could put on my own shoes in the morning. Thank goodness I now understand how stupid I am.
Today is Earth Day, why does anyone even bother? I used to think it was important to try and save the planet, but luckily I now understand how stupid I was. Turns out climate change isn’t real and even if it is, it’s not that bad. I should stop whining about the environment.
I should understand that all this extreme weather is simply an opportunity to rebuild cities, towns, and homes over and over again when they get destroyed by weather events.
I stupidly used to think oil was bad for the planet too, but now I’ve been enlightened and feel much better. I even thought fracking was bad just because it wastes a massive amount of clean water, causes earthquakes, contaminates groundwater and air, etc. I should have understood that fracking is a fun way to invade the Earth on a fundamental level that causes it to shake, rattle, and roll.
I’m so out of it, I used to think when I read product reviews they were real. Duh, no, most are not even done by real people. Many were written by computers programmed to make spelling mistakes and grammatical errors, to appear as though they were done by real people not corporations (but aren’t corporations people?). Isn’t that clever?
I’m being lied to by everyone, all day, every day…even my memory lies to me, probably because it knows I’m too stupid to know any better.
I was so stupid when the Occupy Movement started, I thought they were protesting the corruption of democracy, and how the banks and corporations control our governments and every aspect of our lives. Luckily the news, who would know because they’re run by those same corporations, told me it was a poorly organized joke.
Whew, what a relief, I thought this movement might actually challenge the corrupt system and bring about positive changes. Thankfully the news and the government keep explaining to us, I’m sure because they love us, that anyone who doesn’t agree with them are: radicals, flakes, terrorists, idiots, kooks, hippies, felons, drug users, and uneducated trouble-makers.
I hope they keep explaining it because what if people actually start to believe they don’t have to live in a society run by the rich who only care about the rich?
What if we actually believed we should expect our leaders to do what’s right for all of us?
Thank goodness I have people to set me straight, to tell me how stupid I am for believing we can have a good economy and a good environment, or believing that we are worthy of an equal, kind, and fair society, that we are worthy of the truth.
I’m sure someday I’ll look back at this and laugh, if I can understand it.
No wealth. No poverty. No crime.
No race. No religion. No fear.
No losers. No winners (except Charlie Sheen, because make no mistake, even a 1000 years from now, both he and Keith Richards could very well still be alive, and possibly, our leaders).
No celebrities. No Kardashians (Utopia, for sure).
No hate. No envy (which makes me envy them a little).
Equality. Real equality, not just talked about.
Everyone eats the same food (we’d still have all the different foods we like, right? Oh, I guess that wouldn’t make any sense.).
Precise language. No lying.
No memories of the past. No echoes of the war, terror, sickness, hunger, dramas, or grudges to assault the senses.
I can’t imagine never having seen animals or colours or heard music. Never felt snow on your tongue, or rain on your cheeks. Never soothed, sang, swam, tried something just for the fun of it…Never felt, expressed, or received love. Never dreamed.
I finally decided to watch The Giver, so I stopped watching Jane the Virgin (don’t judge me, the titillating title hides plenty of laughs and a myriad of excellent messages about life, love, growing up, letting go, choices, and dealing with things when the choices are taken away from us).
This Lois Lowry book always struck a chord with me. When we’re given the freedom to make choices, do we make the wrong ones? No choices, therefore, no drama, no conflict, no pain. Life would be contented, safe, comfortable, but it would lack surprise, passion, dreams, and joy.
I approached the film adaptation cautiously, so many books have been confused, corrupted, or cauterized in the Hollywood machine. This was Hollywoodized, but in a good way.
For all my prejudging, Meryl Streep, Jeff Bridges, and a talented group of young actors (yes, including Taylor Swift) relentlessly brought this complicated book to life in an accessible and entertaining fashion.
Instead of wishing for a Utopian future or bracing for a Dystopian one, we should be working on making a better today.
Are teens and young people at risk for dreaming anymore?
Dreaming has become very expensive…and I think you need an app for it.
Boomers and Gen X were well-intentioned, wanting to give our children everything. Somehow it backfired and we’re leaving them with: a broken system, crumbling infrastructure, crippling debt, dubious morals, attention issues, a yawning wealth gap, a dying planet, corrupt governments and business.
Now in our defence, we also gave them: kittens on the internet, tons of fast food, and technology that might be destroying them.
Yet I’m still hopeful. Why? Because they are.
Many young people still want to try. They want to change things.
The media gives us the impression that all young people care about is
their smart phones, that they don’t vote, they’re unmotivated, or joining terrorist groups.
But that’s because the news is pandering – sensationalism rules.
Saving the planet isn’t sexy.
Trillions in unfunded liabilities (governments are happy if you don’t pay attention to things like this) is boring and incomprehensible.
None of this has ratings potential. Rarely goes viral. But it should. We need to stop focusing on the negative and sensational.
Have we removed our children’s ability to dream? I hope not.
Maybe it would help if we stopped calling them things like, Generation Screwed. That’s uplifting.
Profusely unemployed or underemployed, many live at home longer or return home. Debt, especially from student loans, is weighing them down. They need to have hope.
This generation, Millennials, have been given so much.
Their expectations are high. A new smart phone in their hand, and often. Big TVs, little laptops and tablets, a car to drive, fast food, clothes, trips.
Yet when they get out into the world to earn enough to have those things themselves, they hit barriers – no jobs, part-time jobs, low-income jobs, outsourcing, and even their beloved technology is plotting to steal their jobs.
They’re told to: lower their expectations; accept the new normal; the low-hanging fruit has been picked; and society has reached a plateau. Wow, way to motivate.
That should be a Graduation Speech:
Knowing that society has reached a plateau and all the low-hanging fruit has been picked, we’re all going back home to live with our parents until we’re 40 or so.
This is the new normal, having lowered our expectations of ever getting a decent job or a home.
We accept this is the way things are.
And in conclusion, check out this viral video of a zebra that can paint its own toenails.