’18 A To Z Challenge – Bipolar Disorder

Pot Smoker

The hippie days of peace, love, beads, and acceptance of other people and their foibles, are long dead. The Age of Information has created more strongly held, and stridently expressed opinions.  I think we can all agree that, despite the push for a more tolerant and more sensitive society, it seems that when given the opportunity to be unkind, people still tend towards putting others down (especially when they have anonymity or the distance that a computer screen provides).

The ‘highway’ is too often clogged with intolerance, now it’s just “My way, or I’ll hate you.” It doesn’t seem to matter what the issue – abortion, religion, politics – often mixed together, there just seems to be no middle ground anymore.  Nobody wants to listen to the other guy.  It’s become two greatly divergent solitudes, neither side ‘winning’, but screaming louder and louder, to appear to.

Red States – Blue States – The United States may soon become the Un-United States. It’s as close to Civil War as it has been for over a century and a half.  Political ‘dialog’ often degenerates to the likes of:

Democrats are treasonous bastards.
Republicans come from lesbian free-thinkers

God's Kingdom and Politics

The Democrats once again want to tear this country apart simply for slavery.  What disgusting selfish, evil scumbags these partisan shitstains show themselves to be. Again, the lying, lack of remorse, pervasive harm and pain, and mocking of well accepted standards and boundaries, this is the basis of evil, folks.

I am saddened by the rift in the United States, because people are less able to discuss the issues and ideas, and much more able to insult the fact that an idea is either left or right. The ridicule and the name calling on political affiliation has turned political dialog into hateful attacks.

Insulting the people who lean one way or the other does not bring our current society forward. We won’t always agree, but we can take a look at what the other side is attempting to achieve.

Come on kids, play nice with each other. As David Bowie asks in his song, Under Pressure, “Why can’t we all just get along, get along, get along??” At least listen to why the other fellow thinks and feels the way he does. Nobody learns anything while he’s doing the talking, and nobody gets his way all the time! 😯

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Flash Fiction #94

Antiques

PHOTO PROMPT © Mary Shipman

HARD-TIME MACHINE

They’d spent a wonderful week at the little lakeside tourist town when he finally succumbed to curiosity about the sign. It read;

TAKE A TRIP IN A TIME MACHINE
Shuttle Leaves At
9:00AM 11:00 AM 1:00PM 3:00PM

The psychedelically-painted hippie love-bus dropped them off at a moribund factory, next to another bright sign declaring;

Welcome to Terri’s Temporal Temple
Come on in and see how your
ancestors lived 150 years ago
(And our Amish neighbors still do)

It was a cute come-on for a ratty little antique shop, but the tour was educational. Our pioneer ancestors worked hard! Vive technology!

***

Go to Rochelle’s Addicted to Purple site and use her Wednesday photo as a prompt to write a complete 100 word story.

Stuff You Should Know

 

Vegetarian is an ancient tribal name for the village idiot, who can’t hunt, fish, or start a fire.

The crap that gullible people believe, coupled with thought processes that make a plate of spaghetti look neat and well organized, have led to some of the strangest, often dangerous, shit.  In the Middle Ages, the cognoscenti, the intelligent, educated (?) men noticed that ferns never produced seeds….and yet, ferns grew, and multiplied.  Therefore….Careful!  Don’t hurt yourself on this….fern seeds were invisible.  If you could find and gather enough of these seeds that couldn’t be seen, and ate them, you would become invisible too.  Can you say Dark Ages, or Inquisition??!  Or Westboro, or just Duh!

Once upon a time, (Wasn’t this week!) people had respect for themselves and others, and various institutions.  Perhaps society was a bit too restrictive, and change was an improvement, but the pendulum swung too far the other way.  I blame the hippie generation.  With the best of intentions, they tore society down, but failed to put up anything in its place, and society needs structure.

If it feels good, do it.  Like my young senator, they weren’t doing anything that their parents hadn’t done, but, you damned young fools, that’s what doors are for.  I believe this was the beginning of the downfall of the education system, no penalties, no failures, no need to work.  Spell it as it sounds.

Back then, only criminals committed criminal acts, and if caught, went to jail for them.  One did not break into neighbors’ houses, or steal or vandalize their cars.  One did not steal from neighbor-owned businesses….but, the wheel has turned, and society has changed.

Cities have grown larger, and more impersonal.  Companies are not owned by us, so there are more and more among us who are willing and anxious to steal from and damage them.  Then, if they get caught they blame parents who didn’t raise them well, and teachers who didn’t understand them, and claim they are the victims of some plot.  They’re not criminals!  Give them a GPS anklet and six months of house arrest.

Businesses have had to modify their buildings to reduce loss and shrinkage, two words that mean being stolen from by outsiders, and being stolen from by employees.  Many stores are now laid out so that you can’t get back out the door you came in.

On a trip to South Carolina, the wife and I shopped for groceries at a Piggly-Wiggly store, simply because we’d heard Jeff Foxworthy make fun of them on his comedy albums.  We found out that the entrance doors had no motion sensor on the inside.  As we approached them from the outside, they slid open for us, and a young man lugging a hockey bag zipped out past us, with the head cashier and store manager in hot pursuit through the exit doors.

He’d been spotted on the closed-circuit, dropping meat into the bag.  They were going to approach him, when he used us to facilitate his getaway.  They chased him into the parking lot, but he got into a car and got away.  We got the manager as a bag-boy as we checked out, and I asked what happened.  They had good video shots of him from several cameras, and they got his license number.  The manager said the state troopers would probably be waiting for him by the time he got home.

The same kind of thing happened out near Benzeknees, but the pursuers were too impetuous.  When the thief drove off, he struck and killed a clerk.

Many Canadian stores, including my cheap newspaper favorite, are installing double-bar systems.  As you enter, pushing on the outer bar allows you to open the inner bar.  They’re almost impossible to reach over the inner bar from inside the store, to get the outer bar to release it, and allow egress.

Recently, as the wife and I entered to pick up (and pay for) a few items, we were met by a pair of shoplifting Nuns.  Actually, they had used the pharmacy, which is located at the entrance end of the building.  Since they had nothing else to purchase, they wanted to exit at the nearest door.  We had to explain to them that they would have to go to the other end and show their paid-for packages to a cashier, to sidle out past shoppers checking out.  Neither of them was toting a hockey bag.

Sixteen Amish in eastern Ohio were convicted of hate crimes.  The leader of a strict, break-away sect apparently was miffed that other Amish did not follow him.  Declaring that some of the non-followers were not pious enough, he ordered his sons, and some of their friends, to break into homes in the middle of the night.  Men were pulled from bed, and their beards were cut off.  The two to three-foot long hair of women was lopped off, sometimes down to the scalp.

The suspects argued that the Amish are bound by different rules, guided by their religion, and that the government had no place getting involved in what amounted to a family or church dispute.  It’s the, “My religion is better than your laws.” all over again.  Other Amish testified that the religious teachings and methods of punishment of the firebrand ideologue deviated from standard Amish traditions.

The season of festivals/drive the daughter places, is upon me.  Last Saturday I took her to her BarterWorks meet.  This Saturday will be the Cherry Park Festival.  The wife was busy tonight, pouring beeswax candles for her.  Sunday is a 50 mile drive to visit the crazy cat lady.  Next Saturday will be an Anti-Violence Festival in the big Victoria Park, and Sunday we will visit our friends at the Free Thinkers meeting.  Since the son is doing a week of day shift at work, perhaps he might wish to join us.  I’ll keep you updated, whether you want to be or not.