Sometimes I wish I'd made a conscious choice to blog about being middle-aged in America, or about cooking, or about cats, or something else pop-cultural and relatively insignificant in the larger sphere of things. Perhaps I'd feel somewhat less like I'm carrying a boulder on my back all the time. But doing this seems like a chore most of the time of late -- a chore and an exercise in futility. It's not that much different from when I managed to bang out a review of Unleashed
in 2005 and realized "This just isn't fun anymore."
Part of it is that instead of being able to get my necessary 7-1/2 hours of sleep every night I'm up at 5 AM in order to leave the house by 7:15 for the Job That Ate My Life. It isn't that I don't LIKE said job; and I'm damn lucky to have it. It's challenging, it pays decently, and I work with great people. But when the reality is that you are out of the house from 7:15 (6:15 some mornings) and most nights don't get home till 6:30 PM (or later if you manage to squeeze in a half-hour at the gym), and then have more work to do in the evening, you end up with a house that you'd be ashamed to have anyone enter, and a spouse whose patience with the fact that all you do is work makes him damn close to a saint and who deserves more of your attention than he gets, how do you even breathe, let alone do insightful articles about the Important Issues of the Day?
This is why you've seen little here from me lately but in-depth articles about Olympic figure skating and funny videos. Because when I sit down at 5 AM, and start looking at various news sites and other blogs, I'm so horrified by what I see that I go into a kind of paralysis. I'm not the only one getting to this point. Our good friend DCap
, one of the best bloggers down here among the rabble (as opposed to the Big Boys and Girls, for whom this is What They Do instead of something they do in stolen moments), threw in the towel at the beginning of February. Richard Blair gave up at the beginning of the year
. Carrie of Carrie's Nation, who used to contribute here, just up and disappeared one day, going so far as to delete her blog.
I'm not about to go that route, even if only because I have no idea what I'd do with myself without it. Going into my home office after pouring a cup of coffee, turning on the monitor, and starting to read is something I do on autopilot at this point. On the other hand, it would probably take the rest of my expected life to just clean up this house. (And no, don't tell me to hire someone, because this house has to be purged of effluvia before anyone can effectively clean it, and after last week's snowpocalypse, all of my shrubbery is pretty much destroyed, which is going to require huge expenditures of cash to have it all dug up and replaced in the spring.) But when I read stuff like this
, and this
, and Cookie Jill's Sunday environmental news
, and when Driftglass has to hold a fundraiser in order to continue
, well, you know things are at a sorry pass indeed.
It was one thing when we had an inept boob as President, a soulless ghoul as Vice President, combined with ruthless bought-and-paid-for Republicans in Congress for whom ideology trumps EVERYTHING, including the good of the country and feckless Democrats, bought for usually less money, who are scared of their own shadows. But now we have the same Congressional Republicans and Democrats, combined with yet another President playing out his childhood baggage on a national stage, one who's smart enough to know better, but just as inept, and a Vice President who ought to be better able to help him navigate the morass known as Capitol Hill. And what do we have? Continued war, continued mass surveillance of Americans, continued worship of Wall Street to the exclusion of everyone else, and an impending huge transfer of workers' wages to insurance company executives. So what's the difference? Democrats aren't trying to create an evangelical Christian theocracy designed to bring about the Rapture and they aren't trying to jail women for having miscarriages? Because Jesus and female sexuality are about the only playing fields on which there's any difference anymore.
So if you don't see daily posts from me for a while, don't fret. I'm just trying to regain some equilibrium here.
UPDATE: DCap is dipping his toes in the water again. But for the most part, the only ones of us who aren't just plain exhausted are guys like Bustednuckles, who in a parallel reality, are the Tea Party
-- only with rage pointed in the right places and minus the stoopid.
Labels: bloggers, despair