Posts Tagged: sad


26
Dec 11

Happy Sigh or Sad Good-Bye

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Happy day after Christmas.  I guess it’s happy.

For some people the day after Christmas is a very sad good-bye.  It means the excitement has peaked and the mundane of everyday life is on the horizon.

For months the momentum and excitement builds and then crescendos in one grand crash of cymbals on Christmas day with gift wrapping flying, people laughing with oohs” and ”aahs” abounding.

Stuff memories are made of.

While some are having a sad good-bye to the Yule Tide peak there are others who are slap happy that it’s all over.

You can almost hear their internal voice screaming from the mountains tops, “Thank God it’s over and good riddance.”

The months leading up to the big day have been grueling or barely tolerable at best.  Now they are setting back the day after Christmas with coffee in hand releasing a very happy sigh.

Some of you can probably relate to this poem I ran across.

One Day After Christmas

It’s Christmas time at my house, the relatives are here.

They eat me out of house and home, and drink up all my beer.

I love the decorations, and the sleigh bells in the snow,

But I wish those pesky relatives would take their kids and go.

The cookie crunchers are in a free-for-all, the girls against the boys,

They’re fighting over boxes ‘cause they’re bored with all their toys.

My mother-in-law is snoring in my favorite TV chair,

Those kids are stringing lights on her and tenseling her hair.

I oughta wake her up before the fireworks begin,

But I wanna see those blue sparks fly when they plug her in.

-       Author Unknown

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Granted, this poem is no literary masterpiece…. But it makes a point.

My guess is most of you are where I am… kinda in the middle.

I had a wonderful Christmas but I have to admit that I caught myself giving a substantial “Whew” this morning while relaxing.

So, I sit in the living room rather content next to the forlorn Christmas tree.  The tree is looking very inadequate and purposeless this morning without any gifts under the boughs.

But at least I have the lights on.  It looks somewhat happy.  There are few things sadder to me than a Christmas tree after the big day with the lights off.

Now that Christmas is in the rearview mirror I have a suggestion that will make the world a much better place… well… for me anyway.

Please, please, please – if you have outdoor decorations – either take them down immediately or keep them lit.

This is especially true with the inflatable decorations.  There are few things more disturbing than limp Santas, reindeer or snowmen lying in a disfigured heap on the lawn.

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If you are an inflatable kind of person (Christmas inflatable not kinky inflatable), keep them blown up looking happy and useful or put them out of our misery and pack them away till next year.

Well, regardless of how you’re feeling today, happy or sad… or both, at least keep the Christmas tree and decorations happy by keeping them lit or putting them up.

I have one more blog entry for 2011.  Hopefully it will be a bit more insightful than todays meanderings.

See you Thursday.

Ciao.


30
Jun 11

Hard Times in Life

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Today is a bad day.

I am not depressed… just really sad.

The topic of the tattooed arm that we have been poking at the last few blogs is on hold for today.

Someone close died… very suddenly… if you get my jist.

A sudden death like this is new territory.  I have had people close to me die before but this is different.  It is tragic, disturbing, and meaningless on levels that you can’t explain unless you have experienced it.

Everyone close to the person is going through the reflective mental gymnastics of shoulda, coulda, woulda.

So you can see why my brain is out of order today.  To add to the saddness and the mental gymnastics that my brain has been going through, the family has asked me to conduct the Memorial Service.

I am a Christ follower with a strong faith, but I am not a minister.  I have never conducted a Memorial Service of any kind, especially one that has such painful implications and complexity.

So you can see why my head is preoccupied.

See you Monday.


9
Dec 10

I Hate Christmas – Again

As you know, in my last blog entry I entered the dark side of Christmas.  What started out as just a fun twist on this wonderful holiday took me into a black hole of hate. 

My wife said it was a downer blog entry… hopefully I didn’t bum you out too much also.  I don’t mean to be the bearer of negative reality, but when I get slapped in the face by something I tend to take notice. 

I mentioned that all the videos I watched and blogs I read about hating Christmas tended to revolve around three distinct themes.  These were the primary ingredients for what I called the cauldron of toxic brew created by those that hate Christmas.

Each theme has two distinct characteristics.  First, they each possess a kernel of truth which lends a level of credibility to the argument. 

Side Note:  Truth has amazing power.  Because of it’s potency it is regularly used to season a lie making it easy for consumption for the lazy or gullible. 

 

Secondly, each of the ingredients are clearly defined, thus allowing them to independently stand alone as a sole rationale for hating Christmas.

Although they stand alone, each video or blog I read blended two or more of the ingredients.  The three ingredients seemed to naturally mesh and compliment each other increasing the vigorous flow of hate.

Side Note:  HATE.  That’s a strong word.  Some people say that Hate is the opposite of Love.  I don’t think I agree. 

Love is a word with much passion, emotion and investment.  Interestingly, hate possesses the same characteristics.  To me the opposite of Love is apathy.  Apathy means that there is so little care for something that it is not worth any investment of time, energy or emotion. 

 

“Emotions are the footprints of values.”

 - Kerry Patterson

 

OK, back to the three ingredients of hating Christmas.

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Ingredient # 1:  Political

Personally, I found these people very fascinating.  They seemed to be the brighter bulbs in the package.   Their rationale for hating Christmas was built on logic and a political framework that (in my humble opinion) is fundamentally flawed.

Here are a few phrases that seemed to capture the essence of their mindset.

  • “Brainwashed by the Christmas industrial complex”
  • “Corrupt Federal Government”
  • “Lying Capitalists”

One person even hailed the insights of the almighty Karl Marx, “Holidays are the opiate of the masses.”

You know, there is some truth to what they are saying.  I agree, the holidays are far too commercial.  But talk about throwing the baby out with the bath water… give me a break. 

Frankly, those that lay the ills of our world on the evil US Government or the filthy corporate types that exploit the masses is wearing thin (but I digress).

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Ingredient # 2:  Personal

To me, these people were sad.  My heart hurt for them.  They are like a wounded animal that lashes out whenever anyone draws near.  Christmas becomes the perfect catalyst for their spews of hate because the Spirit it represents seems to cruelly mock the void within.

The sad reality is that people are treated with unconscionable brutality.  God only knows the details of their pain.   My prayer is that they will tire of the incessant rampage and stop long enough for light to pierce the dark pain.   

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Ingredient # 3:  Religious

Of course, what else would you expect?  There were a lot of so called atheists out there bemoaning the notion of a religious holiday.  All the Christmas hoopla we partake in that makes us look like fools. 

The irritant is that they feel the need to set straight those of us who have succumbed to the ruse that there is a God.  Now to be fair, many who believe in God feel the need to set the atheists straight.  But that is understandable because those who don’t believe in God have more to lose if they are wrong.

There are those in cyber space that believe in God but this whole Jesus thing is really out of hand.  Christianity is too dominant, taking over the holiday season and shoving the other religious holidays to the side.

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So the big question is, what do I do with all this information?  I looked at it, I considered the relevant points and then made my decision.

I LOVE CHRISTMAS.  I love what it is all about and the joy it brings to the masses.  No, it is not perfect because people are not perfect. 

So I sit next to our Christmas tree and enjoy the season.

So Merry Christmas to the Christians, Happy Hanukah to my Jewish friends and Happy whatever holiday to the Muslins.  (I wonder if Buddhist or Hindus have a holiday?)

Frankly I don’t know what to say to atheists… happy holey day… get it… holey (hole, nothing there)… uh… never mind.

See you Monday.


4
Nov 10

No Longer Innocent

Welcome back.

In the last blog entry we tossed around the first two (of four) elements that made the situation with the crying girl such a dilemma.  We talked about the elements of location/environment and the age factor.

Shall we tackle the more prickly parts of the girl crying episode?  Let’s get on with it.

Element # 3:  Gender

This factor magnified the complexity of the problem a hundredfold.  If I were a female, helping the girl would not have been as much of a challenge.  Let’s face it, when a female approaches another female and reaches out to her, suspicions don’t pop front of mind.  But if a man approaches a girl… the antenna shoot up, caution is observed and suspicion reigns.

Sadly, it’s warranted.  There are enough examples to issue sufficient evidence of the predatory dangers in our society.

Fair Warning: Very honestly much of this blog entry will not be pleasant… not pleasant at all.  I will need to talk about the untalkable.  Those things that we know go on in the shadows of our society with the hopes that it will stay a safe distance from our nice picket fence world.  We wouldn’t want anything distasteful or dirty to disrupt our lives would we?

Or even more insidious is, if we ignore it… it will go away.

Let’s be real… there have always been people (mostly men) who have sexually taken advantage of the innocent.  I remember veiled snippets of conversation talking about the “the dirty old man” down the street or the shadowy whispers regarding certain extended family members.

Yes, it’s always been here.   But now it is worse… much worse.  Some will argue that it is no worse than it has always been.  The only difference is that what was talked about in the past with hand over mouth is now talked about more openly.

I beg to differ.  I do agree that we are more open about the topic but historically there have been natural barriers that kept at bay the natural progression down the path that ends in the exploitation of innocence.

Here are just four of the historical barriers that in my opinion have been lowered easing the progression downward resulting in the increase of abuse.  The compromise of all of these appeals to and titillates the baser nature vs. calling to our higher nature.

  1. Accessibility:  the ease of obtaining sexually explicit material or information
  2. Extreme:  the types of images available mark the worst extreme imaginable
  3. Sexual saturation:  advertising, movies, TV, etc. that hyper-sexualizes everything.
  4. Societal norms:  eased standards of what is accepted and tolerated

Real World Context

I’m sure you have your own stories but allow me to share some of my personal experiences that provides context to what I am saying.

When I was a kid I remember on occasion friends would pass around a few pictures of naked women.  We would huddle together and examine our treasure trove of exotica and joke and laugh.  The pictures by today’s standards would be considered very tame soft porn.

If you wanted to get something more risqué you would need to go to the seedy part of town and try to find a store with a limited selection of magazines.

I remember one time two friends (Gary and Mike) and I really took a risk.  We heard about a theater that (stop, look to your right and left to make sure no one sees, in whispered tone)… showed dirty movies.

We snuck off and ventured into the dark land of smut.  It was the Riviera Art Theater in Chattanooga thirty miles away.  It was tucked away on the bad side of town.  We of course made sure no one was around when we made our dash from our car to the ticket window.  It felt like an eternity as the old bent up attendant looked us over and issued the tickets.

It was amazing.  We were engulfed by a 60 minute film with a crappy storyline and two short scenes where a naked woman running across a field exploded off the screen.

Funny Side Note: We got back to our town and my friend realized that he had dropped his wallet at the “hell hole” theater.  We panicked.  We knew for sure we were busted.  We made every promise to God possible not to be caught… and we weren’t.

Looking back on all of this it feels so very innocent.  And in some ways it was.  God made us to be sexual beings.  A preacher acquaintance said that God must have been in a really good mood the day He created sex.

In hind sight I don’t think God got too bent out of shape by us exploring what sex was all about.  But thank goodness there were enough boundaries in place around us that limited our exploration ventures.

Today is a different matter.  The unthinkable and untalkable beyond the realm of decency is accessible and accepted.

Horrible Side Note: Our society (USA not a third world country) has an epidemic of sex slavery.  I ran across an report by ABC news that said there are at least 100,000 kids between the ages of 9 to 19 (average age eleven) held in sex slavery in the USA.

Does this disturb you?  It does me.  Frankly, I don’t want to hear about this stuff.  I want to conveniently tuck away disturbing information like this in a little compartment somewhere in the back of my head and discount the reality.

Like most people I want things like this kept in their proper place because it’s too distasteful.  What’s even sadder is the reality that we want to keep things like this at a distance because we don’t want the reality forced to our attention.  If it comes to our attention then it demands that we do something.

Awareness demands action.

I have done a pretty good job at keeping the bad stuff in the world at a safe distance as not to disturb my life.  But then the situations like the crying girl surfaces reality and slaps me in the face.

The reality that as a man who really want to help a young girl is blocked because of the deterioration of the world around us.

It angers me is that I feel penalized for the failures of others.

This was a heavy blog entry today.  Be forewarned… Monday is looking pretty heavy also.  I hope you join me.


14
Oct 10

Heavy Load for a Little Girl

I saw a girl crying today.  It was sad.

On my way to work this morning I drove through a residential area.  There were lots of kids walking to the bus stop loaded down with their school backpacks.  Pretty normal stuff.  The little boys were pushing each other and making faces.  The girls were in pairs or clustered in groups all animated and chatty.

A girl away from the other kids caught my eye.  She was walking alone carrying her books.  I guess her to be about age twelve.  Her head was slightly tilted down and her posture broadcasted a heavy load… a load more than books.

As she slowly moved, her distant eyes were a fixed gaze on the cement sidewalk just ahead of her feet.

And there were the tears.  These were not bawling tears that pour out because an upset adolescent is forcing a cry because she didn’t get to wear her favorite blouse.  But it was a large single wet path down her cheek to her chin.  The kind of tear that signals a heavy press.  You could just feel the heaviness.

My mind flew through a hundred different scenarios to assign cause for her pain.  None were good and some unthinkable.  To assume anything would be unfair and presumptuous.

I felt sad and helpless.  This made me angry.  It made me angry that in our society the default assumptions of a man approaching a young girl are questionable at best.  It made me angrier that our world is such that this scenario is magnified a 100% more because of race… she was black.

To me personally there were no gender, age or race issues.  Only that a hurting kid needed some encouragement and I couldn’t help.  It angered me.

Yes, as any good Christian… I prayed.  I prayed quite a bit.  But frankly, I felt bereft.

Now don’t get me wrong.  I believe in praying and that prayer does impact.  But it still felt somewhat hollow without some action.

Some of you may say I should have stopped regardless of the situation.  I don’t know… maybe.

I do believe that keeping going and not stopping was the right thing to do given the above mentioned realities.

Now the question is what am I suppose to do with this?  I really don’t know.  I write about it… so what?

I am trying to decide whether I want to unpack this in more detail or just move on.

Sigh!   I’m not sure.

I guess you will find out on Monday.