Thursday, May 28, 2015

Tripping

Two of my friends are embarking today upon trips, one to another state, one to another country. I wish each of them Bon Voyage, a happy time, and a safe return.

Me? I may make it to the next village past ours. These days I consider an excursion that requires more than a couple of hours in the car to be a major event that requires much planning and preparation. Himself has to bribe me even to venture out to that close-by village. My trekking days and adventurous spirit have been laid to rest.

I'm sending down roots?

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Final Season

And while I’m complaining about television…

Himself just informed me that three of the shows I watch are being cancelled: Battle Creek, Backstrom, and Forever. None of these has gotten a decent run but I suppose since they required just a bit of brain use by the viewer they were doomed from the beginning.

What will we be offered instead? More gore. More sex. More ghosts, ghouls, and dark shadowy runs through dark, shadowy forests populated by creatures from some scriptwriter’s feverish nightmares.


And for me? Probably a lot more time to read.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Season Finale


A number of my favorite television shows are coming to the end of their seasons. Some aren’t. It is sometimes hard to determine what the season is unlike the Good Old Days when the onset of summer meant everything would be in re-runs. With the revolving start anytime/end anytime scheduling, some sort of effort to get the jump on the competition perhaps, I can never tell anymore except by the ridiculous scripts revolving around cliffhanger endings.

It is just plain silly. Some major character has to be left bleeding, or kidnapped by a psycho, or in a coma - whatever major peril the writers fevered imaginations can devise, and this is supposed to keep the audience mesmerized and on the edge of their seats waiting for the next season to tell us how that person contrived to be healed, rescued, or miraculously wake up. Oh my, the anticipation, the nail-biting. Yawn.

I guess I’m different from the audience to which the writers think they are catering. I watch these shows because I like the ensemble of actors and the characters they portray. A good part of the time the plots are either ridiculous or inexplicable - or both. It is worth a headache to try and parse them out to make any sense. I view the shows to enjoy the dynamic between the kludged together family of cops, agents, and officers.

When the season concludes without tremendous angst, when the characters gather to schmooze and reminisce I’m guessing there was a fair chance the show might not be back for the next season. The writers were hedging their bets. I go scurrying to the internet to see where contract negotiations are stalled.

Now, if I can only figure out when the shows will resume. Gad but I miss those days when one read the TV Guide issue at the end of summer to see what shows would be new, what resumed, and what changes were announced. End of the ho-hum guessing game.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Bullying

There seem to be several stories a week on the evening news about bullying. It has been the subject in just about every one of the police procedural television shows I watch and is mentioned time and again on the internet chat sites I frequent. I listen and grit my teeth, and can’t help thinking, “So what’s the big deal?”

Politically incorrect of me, I know. I should be gushing with sympathy and jumping to the defense of the frail teen who is suffering abuse from his or her peers.

I’m not.

Kids have always bullied, always ganged together to shun or verbally put down another kid. I’m guessing it happened in ancient Greece, “Agathon can’t rhyme a word!”, in Shakespeare’s time “Juliet does it for a few coppers”, and not much has changed except the method of delivery. I lived through it, through the taunts in the school hallway and the physical shoving out of my seat on the bus home. It was hurtful. I cried and felt humiliated and angry. But I was taught to consider the source and I was expected to suck it up and get over it.

Is society really helping when it rushes to soothe the hurt? Might it not be more useful to help a callous develop on the tender spots? Both sides can probably be argued but I’m thinking we’ve rushed to defend where we should instead have taught self-defense. Learning to overlook and to discount, to seek self-confidence instead of looking to get even in kind, is something individuals, and maybe even nations, might try.