Does it seem this way to anyone else right now? I'm not typically a doomsday alarmist on a grandiose scale, I don't think the sky is falling or the end of the world is nigh. I'm a bigger picture girl, I majored in earth science (way back when), I tend towards a general sense of calm and serenity that comes from thinking in geologic time. I cannot help but notice (or in some instances, I concede, create) interconnectedness between past, present and future. Mine is a worldview glimpsed through a sort of wide-angle lens.
That said, shit is crazy right now!
Often, the news overwhelms me, makes me feel sad and powerless. I won't go so far as to say "hopeless" because - despite a secret desire to be darker, more brooding, more tortured and creative - that's very rarely the case. I'm a buoyant soul by nature. A ridiculous optimist. And so the news can get me down and seep in and threaten my sunshine and lollipops. And nobody wants to see that. So, sometimes I take a breather. I don't read the news, I don't listen to NPR for a while, I pop in a CD when Amy Goodman comes on the radio, you know the drill. Just sort of check out and focus in on a more personal level. And sometimes just check out.
But lately, what with springtime and sunshine and some progress on the raising-a-thirteen-year-old-daughter front, and upcoming move to my dream house, and little sprouting seedlings in my garden and soul-shaking emotional progress I've made in the past year and the ever-surprising, always-wonderful, consistently-funny, brilliant, special man I've recently met (yeah I'm gushing, I know) --- lately, I've been feeling pretty good. And like maybe it was time to check back in with world.
And oh sweet Jeebus it's kinda wild out there. The planet is shaking and erupting and flooding. Since the beginning of the year, we've seen devastating earthquakes in China, Haiti, Chile, Japan, Baja - and that's just the first few that come to mind. Just today, that unpronounceable Icelandic volcano blew FOUR AND A HALF MILES into the air, creating a massive ash cloud 1,000 miles long and 700 miles wide. Torrential rains in the southeastern part of this country have left 20 people dead in Tennessee and most of beloved Nashville underwater. Upwards of 250,000 gallons of oil per day (and likely more than that, realistically) spews from the ocean floor into the Gulf of Mexico - and has been for almost two weeks - causing what could quite possibly be one of the biggest environmental disasters in human history. Citizens in Greece took to the streets, staging what were at first peaceful protests and have now turned into outright riots, in the face of austerity measures and an IMF quasi-bailout of the country's hobbled economic system. These measures (read: loans) will require years of sacrifice in Greece of the sort that will drastically change the economic climate of the country and the day-to-day reality for most of it's citizens. And then there's the whole looming catastrophic global economic breakdown... Oh, and the passage of SB1070, the mind-numbingly heinous anti-immigration law in Arizona that essentially legalizes racial profiling in that state. I mean, shouldn't it be clear when even Gov. Bob McDonnell - a man who recently decided to declare April "Confederate History Month" in his state of Virginia - announces his own misgivings about the bill, namely that it might not be "necessarily helpful to democracy," that something is very, very wrong indeed?
Oh yeah, and this guy married his cat.
And here's where I'd give you a witty sentence or two in summation, maybe bringing things back 'round full circle, but honestly I have no idea what to say. I've been singing along to music in my car for a few weeks, spending my time online checking my gmail, reading my horoscope, dare I admit it? on Facebook...blissfully unaware of the madness raging outside my little cocoon of self-absorbed ruminations. Right now a part of me definitely just wants to crawl back in. I know I won't - I couldn't if I tried. I'm frozen in awe, sort of terrified, and curious.