Thursday, May 19, 2011

Oh, for Pete's Sake!

This morning, I read an email from Facebook where my brother had posted a comment "What happened?" on one of my photos. I thought, now what photo have I posted that would have elicited this question?

It turned out the comment was in reference to a picture of Ham Sammich, or Sammy, my dog. I thought he looked cute. I thought my family (who are all over Facebook) could use a reminder of the sweet, portly beast who thinks he's a lapdog.

Obviously, my brother's very considerate question has got me thinking about how inured we've become to the everyday dramatics of Facebook. What once was a forum for students to mobilize and socialize is now the "muffin top" on the torso we call "social networking." We all know it's there, we try not to look at it, but some people shake and flaunt it like it's something luscious and appealing.

I keep trying to rationalize Facebook's value -- a way to keep in touch with old friends and family, a way to connect with causes I support, I can share pictures with those who are far away and I can plan my social time -- essentially, I can share my life.

At what cost am I hanging on to these positive attributes of Facebook? I check my News Feed less and less because it is often a source of pain and stress for me. I find myself being judgemental, intolerant and frustrated. I miss the days when all you might come across are stupid videos of skaters racking their nuts on a handrail and babies burping. I miss my causes saying they had a successful event. But, most of all, I miss ten minutes of morning and often ten minutes of my evening. What about you all?

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Books as Comfort Food

There are times when I chuck the ol' Carpe Diem into the bin as a load of just so much claptrap. At these junctures, where one path seems as poor as another, I grab a task, something to keep my worries at bay. Some people eat, others knit, runners run, drinkers drink, some blog or podcast and others participate in all sorts of TMI activities that burden perfect strangers and loosely connected acquaintances with irrelevant nonsense. I read and write — solitary, thoughtful and outside of myself — the perfect pastimes to lead from wallowing in defeat to wonder of the ways of people. I often leave this sort of work sated and full of profound intention to change. And, I do ... change, that is. Always for the better, I believe, always for the better.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Life Versus Humanity

Our lives are electric — painful, dynamic, mysterious, golden, commonplace, fleeting, eccentric, bold, joyful and without guarantees of any sort — yet, in service to others, we assail our lives' errant, erratic natures to run bolts to ground to bring us to purposeful and meaningful acts of humanity.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Mr. _____ Sucks In Dirt

His fingers are covered with blackboard chalk dust,

Which pass frequently over cratered nodules

Of flapping, undulating facial skin.

Who’s to say we need to listen to this or that from

Teacher/Joker with his pores gaping open,

Like mini orifices, which collect dust

Of grimy school yard trash heaps and classroom

Germs from our coughs and cafeteria belches?

He takes all this into his ruddy skin,

And spews it out in judgments upon our work;

He emits all this noxiousness out in words

Of no encouragement. His face of dust

Pans the room of would-be scholars, druggies,

Gas station attendants and practical nurses.

We know not what our pre-adult skin

Holds in store for our futures and families —

For our next day or the day after that —

Because the bible says we are all of dust

And to dust we shall return from our skin (but, they don’t teach this in high school).