Maybe current crisis-of-the-day panic will lead us to hard looks in the mirror
Icould’ve sworn I read Barnum & Bailey packed up its big top and went home a couple of years ago.
I bring this up because the last week or so — if you can
get past the seriousness OPINION of the issues involved — has been a real circus around here.
The news about local newsmakers has been disheartening enough, and then the rest of the nation says, “Hold my beer.” A Florida politician accused of licking men’s faces? Amazon founder Jeff Bezos’ alleging extortion involving intimate photographs against the National Enquirer, which is run by a guy named Pecker? (The tabloids must feel like they’re standing in the batter’s box with a Louisville Slugger and a slow-moving beach ball floating toward the plate.)
All of this against the backdrop of seemingly unending craziness coming out of Washington and other international capitals.
So, yes, 2019 has been a year to forget, and I’ll be glad to see it go as it has completely worn me out — (checks calendar) — though we appear to still be in the second week of February.
Speaking of the Enquirer, perhaps next week we will learn a spaceship filled with visitors from another galaxy has landed safely in New Kent? Or Goochland? Or maybe even the last open field in Short Pump? (I’d suggest downtown Richmond, but parking can be a challenge for out-of-towners.)
At this stage, though, who would bet against it?
I mean, who would have thought paging through high school and college yearbooks would become such a personally harrowing experience?
I write this as someone who generally steers clear of politics, but it seems that much of what has ensnared public officials — and, for that matter, anyone else at any time doing anything mean or stupid or selfish, particularly when they’re young — is self-inflicted, born in bad judgment, bad intentions or general cluelessness.
There’s a lot to be said for trying to live by the notion of never doing anything that you wouldn’t want your mother to know about or that you wouldn’t want to read on the front page of the newspaper (even at a much later date).
Few of us are disciplined enough to adhere strictly to that adage, but it doesn’t mean it’s not good policy.
Maybe, if we’re lucky, this will all lead beyond the obvious political posturing and the crisis-of-the-day panic and into the realm of a much-needed, hard look in the mirror.
Perhaps there will be a reckoning of what went on in the past and how we move on to a better future where we can all get along, respect one another and make the world a better place for everyone — and why it’s important to think before you act and to understand why certain things are not just potential reputation-killers and sources of embarrassment but hurtful to others and simply wrong. Or not.
Maybe when the smoke from this dumpster fire finally clears and the dancing elephants have gone back to where retired circus acts live, we will merely return to business as usual, as if nothing happened. That would be sad and a missed opportunity.
If nothing else, this has served to enlighten those who might still be confused at this late date that slathering black shoe polish on your face is not acceptable (and wearing white sheets with eyeholes and pointy hats is even worse). So, you know, make a mental note.
Meantime, as we figure out how we move forward, we could really use a little diversion from the 24/7 onslaught of grim news (and goodness knows what comes next), and I’ve got one:
Spring training! Pitchers and catchers report this week.
Maybe when the smoke from this dumpster fire finally clears ... we will merely return to business as usual, as if nothing happened. That would be sad and a missed opportunity.