I often feel like I don’t have enough time to post blogs on here, what with work 50-60 hours a week, spending time with Mark, keeping up to date on my New Yorkers, cooking, reading food blogs, wasting time on Facebook and what not. But, I do, at least, realize that the way I spend my time is a choice. I chose to do the things I do, to spend my time the way I want, and that—for whatever reason—means not spending a lot of time writing on this blog.
I think that part of it is that the things I would like to blog about here usually require a thought-out argument or some sort. There are many, many things that I read or encounter in my day-to-day that I would like to expound on, but somehow it takes just a little more time to make a cogent argument to present to the world than to relate a food/recipe-related story for Recipes For Laughter. Then again, it takes even less time to not blog at all—and considering my back log of New Yorkers, maybe I shouldn’t even waste my time writing ever.
I can always just lambaste my friends when we hang out about men winking at women (so subjugating!) and other such random arguments. Who needs to blog about it anyway?
Still, I always keep a running list of subjects for further inquiry and for proselytizing people I know. I guess the nice thing about a space like this is that they don’t argue back (in real time anyway). But, for now, the most interesting thing to me is the pendulum of history. I think people often forget that everything is a cycle.
As a society, we swing to the right, then to the left, then to the right. Whatever moment we are in, it is somewhere inciting a backlash which will soon gain momentum as people become disillusioned with the present. (People are forever disillusioned with the present–maybe the subject of another blog post?). And that backlash will soon gain a majority position, which will in turn inspire a counter-movement that will slowly enter the mainstream (Obama’s election begets the Tea Party…) and so on and so forth. Such is history.
Nothing is permanent.
I like to think that each action has an equal and opposite reaction. For each step we take towards a world in which bloggers (yes I am criticizing them here, on my blog; yes, I understand that it is ironic) are given preference over established media sources, I at least hope that somewhere people (like me) are outraged that trusted news sources are being demolished by idiotic amateurs. I, for one, do not want to get my news from Joe the Plumber. I think that he may (or may not) have an interesting point of view that may (or may not) be worth sharing with the wider world, but when it comes to knowing what is happening in the world and making some sort of sense of it, I will always and forever turn to the BBC or The New York Times. Everybody is an expert at something, but how is a person to differentiate the rabble from the experts? One has to know that the level of reporting is to be trusted and that experience and credible expertise contributes to a story. That is something that I will always value. (And I think many other people will, too, though it may not currently seem that way.)
It is my hope that as a society we realize that, yes, citizen reporting is a valuable contribution to the narrative, but that it is no substitute for hard news. I am interested, for example, in what Iranian protesters have to tweet, but I also need to know what is going on above ground. What has led up to the current situation, what political and social factors brought about the unrest? How is the Iranian government responding? How is the rest of the world likely to respond?
We are living in an era of change. Technology is advancing faster than anyone can imagine. We are re-negotiating what newspapers are, what news is, what books are and how we consume them. Things aren’t the same as we remember them in the good old days—but, then again, maybe they never were.
Whenever I think about how—to be perfectly honest—fucked (up) our world seems right now, I like to stop and think: What generation DIDN’T think that the world was moving in the wrong direction? When DIDN’T the end seem near? When DIDN’T people think that they were bringing children into a dangerous and frightful world? I have to imagine that for as long as we have existed, the world has seemed, more or less, pretty fucked. I don’t mean to sound like a naysayer, but I like to keep things in perspective. We are no worse off than we have ever been. Every generation feels that the world is a dangerous place, that it is changing too quickly and not always for the better. That is the way it is.
The one small hope that keeps me going is that with each step, each swing of the pendulum, we (hopefully) move slightly forward. That through each swing, we make a little PROGRESS towards a better place for everyone, though it does not always seems that way in the moment.
And all we can do is continue believing in what we believe in. All we can do is to be true to ourselves and our principles, to pass on our strengths and hopes to those who will follow us.
And the rest is up to them.