Anything is Possible!

With Love, Hope, and Perseverance


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SoCS: My Deep Dark (Blue) Secret

FA8B561A-59CA-4E63-8F22-815B036DD1A4

Directions: Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “abash/a bash/bash.” Use “abash,” or “bash” as a noun or a verb. Bonus points if you manage all three. Have fun!

I was going to write that I don’t like to bash anybody, but then I realized that I do sometimes bash the mainstream media for not so much bashing but putting a spotlight on those who do bash. Oh how they love the bashing. Am I bashing them? The mainstream media? I know they don’t do it all the time, cause I go hunting for good news Tuesday. Just most of the time. They have this mistaken idea we want to see that bashing. It’s okay some of the time, but don’t make a bash out of it. That’s using the word to mean party. Where did that come from? Like a birthday bash.

It’s easy to see the connection between the word abash and bashful. There’s a shame/embarrassment factor in there. I was a bashful child. Not ashamed, but easily embarrassed and not wanting to draw attention to myself. I believe there’s a gene for this bashfulness trait. It can be overridden. In my first years of college I dabbled in drama – the class – but also some with the boyfriend, but let’s not go there. Taking acting class in college helped me become less bashful. I had to learn to project. It was fun! This helped me later in my career where I had to do some public speaking. I could still do it if I had to, but mostly I don’t have to, and I’d rather not.  Just like I’d rather not bash anybody’s head in. No. I wouldn’t. I swear I wouldn’t. Why do I feel the need to repeat that? Is there a hidden desire…. NO! NO! NO! We do not bash heads!

What would I like to bash? OMG. I’m scaring myself. The Stream of Consciousness is treacherous. I’m a PACIFIST. Maybe I’ve been watching too many cop shows. There, the cats’s out of the bag. Not just any cop shows. Not COPS. No way. But NCIS, and lately, I’ve gotten addicted to Blue Bloods reruns. Never woulda believed it. Anyway, it’s made me want to take a self-defense course. This is my deep dark secret. Blue Bloods. I’m going to stop now before I reveal any more secrets. Damn you, Stream of Consciousness. Now look what you’ve gone and made me do!  I don’t care. I’m not abashed at all.

In my senior year of college, the job placement person asked me if I’d be interested in being a cop. I quickly said no to this and that I wasn’t assertive enough. She said, “You could learn to be.” Were they desperate for lady cops? Anyway, becoming an addictions counselor I had to learn to be assertive. Now, I wonder what it would have been like to be a cop. That’s the way of TV drama as I watch Blue Bloods safe on my sofa.

Oh, in case you didn’t know, Blue Bloods is about a family of NY cops and the sister is an  assistant district attorney.  But I really only watch it for the cop romance and the philosophical debates at the Sunday dinner table.  It can be a serious show, so below is a “blooper reel.”

But first, I feel I need to mention that the suicide rate for US police officers is higher than the rate of line of duty deaths as reported in this Huffington Post Article.  Watching Blue Bloods has given me a better appreciation for the police and what they deal with. Yes, it’s just a TV show, but they try to present multiple sides.

 

For more about SoCS, visit Linda at

https://lindaghill.com/2019/03/08/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-march-9-19/

But be warned. You never know what will be revealed in the stream.

Here are the rules:

1. Your post must be stream of consciousness writing, meaning no editing (typos can be fixed), and minimal planning on what you’re going to write.

2. Your post can be as long or as short as you want it to be. One sentence – one thousand words. Fact, fiction, poetry – it doesn’t matter. Just let the words carry you along until you’re ready to stop.

3. I will post the prompt here on my blog every Friday, along with a reminder for you to join in. The prompt will be one random thing, but it will not be a subject. For instance, I will not say “Write about dogs”; the prompt will be more like, “Make your first sentence a question,” “Begin with the word ‘The,’” or will simply be a single word to get you started.

4. Ping back! It’s important, so that I and other people can come and read your post! For example, in your post you can write “This post is part of SoCS:” and then copy and paste the URL found in your address bar at the top of this post into yours. Your link will show up in my comments for everyone to see. The most recent pingbacks will be found at the top. NOTE: Pingbacks only work from WordPress sites. If you’re self-hosted or are participating from another host, such as Blogger, please leave a link to your post in the comments below.

5. Read at least one other person’s blog who has linked back their post. Even better, read all of them! If you’re the first person to link back, you can check back later or go to the previous week by following my category, “Stream of Consciousness Saturday,” which you’ll find below the “Like” button on my post.

6. Copy and paste the rules (if you’d like to) in your post. The more people who join in, the more new bloggers you’ll meet and the bigger your community will get!

7. As a suggestion, tag your post “SoCS” and/or “#SoCS” for more exposure and more views.

8. Have fun!


21 Comments

Good News Deserves Equal Time

SOC badge with butterfly

I’m so tired of media concentration on the worst news available.

Yes, we need to know about the shootings, the murders of people who should not have died. Yes, we need to see the videos taken by bystanders and loved ones to document what happened. But we also need to know more about the good that happens in the world. We desperately need balance.

I know I’ve written about this before, but it’s important, and this is my blog, so this is  what my Stream of Consciousness is saying today.

Our media, particularly the TV news, tends to add to the polarization and tension in any given situation. They love to concentrate on controversy on the TV news and think that’s what people want. The recent shootings being reported from this focus of controversy tend to divide us in America.

I don’t want concentration on controversy and the worst news. I want to know what’s going on and why, but I want to know what solutions are being considered. I want to know about the ones who help. I want to know about people overcoming challenges and learning to love each other, or respect each other at least, and efforts to understand. Concentrating on the worst news, the killings, the robberies, the corruption in government, while giving 5 minutes of good news at the end of a 30 minute news program,  adds to our despair and creates an atmosphere of doom. The intense concentration on the worst news makes those horrors seem normal. They are not normal.

What would happen if we had 50% positive news, or a combination of positive and neutral/informational and 50% bad news. What if we had a rule that you can’t have more than 50% bad news in any news program. Okay, I know that would be infringing on the Freedom of Speech to make it a rule. But what if?

I think a 50/50 ratio of good to bad news would be good for our mental and physical health. I believe there would be a gradual decrease in crime, if enough people watched the 50/50 news program and more people would get attention for doing good things. We’d sleep better at night. We’d be exposed to more positive role models.

God, help us learn to live in peace. Help us learn to love one another, or at least respect one another. Help us speak words of hope and encourage each other to do better. Help us to heal and to find our common ground. Help us to lift up what is good and right about ourselves, our families, our neighbors, our countries and our planet.

Here are some places you can find good news:

http://www.dailygood.org/

https://writingtofreedom.com/  (see “Awesome Stories”)

https://www.good.is/

Today’s Stream of Consciousness prompt was the word: “Concentration.” To learn more, visit Linda Hill’s blog by clicking the link below:

https://lindaghill.com/2016/07/08/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-july-916/

Here are the rules:

1. Your post must be stream of consciousness writing, meaning no editing, (typos can be fixed) and minimal planning on what you’re going to write.

2. Your post can be as long or as short as you want it to be. One sentence – one thousand words. Fact, fiction, poetry – it doesn’t matter. Just let the words carry you along until you’re ready to stop.

3. There will be a prompt every week. I will post the prompt here on my blog on Friday, along with a reminder for you to join in. The prompt will be one random thing, but it will not be a subject. For instance, I will not say “Write about dogs”; the prompt will be more like, “Make your first sentence a question,” “Begin with the word ‘The’,” or simply a single word to get your started.

4. Ping back! It’s important, so that I and other people can come and read your post! For example, in your post you can write “This post is part of SoCS:” and then copy and paste the URL found in your address bar at the top of this post into yours.  Your link will show up in my comments for everyone to see. The most recent pingbacks will be found at the top.

5. Read at least one other person’s blog who has linked back their post. Even better, read everyone’s! If you’re the first person to link back, you can check back later, or go to the previous week, by following my category, “Stream of Consciousness Saturday,” which you’ll find right below the “Like” button on my post.

6. Copy and paste the rules (if you’d like to) in your post. The more people who join in, the more new bloggers you’ll meet and the bigger your community will get!

7. As a suggestion, tag your post “SoCS” and/or “#SoCS” for more exposure and more views.

8. Have fun!


19 Comments

Not the Scary Kind of Christian

Coexist-bumpersticker by Patrick Byrne via wmc

Image by Patrick Byrne via Wikimedia Commons

 

 “I love Christ. It’s just that so many of you Christians are so unlike Christ.”             _____Mahatma Gandhi

I found this version of the Gandhi quote at  Skeptics Stack Exchange,  where they seem to have done a some research. I can understand why Gandhi might have said this.

I am a Christian.  An open-minded, progressive, tree-hugging Christian.

I’m writing this because I want you to know we exist.

Sometimes I wonder if I should even call myself a Christian because of what that label has come to mean to so many. The media likes to celebrate controversial, often negative, people who call themselves Christians, (and maybe they are – it’s not for me to say) people who are not open-minded, not progressive, and certainly not tree-huggers. They are the kind of people who scared the Christianity out of me and drove me to fierce agnosticism when I was in my twenties.

I don’t want to be one of the scary Christians.

It wasn’t until after I became a parent, working in a challenging, bureaucratic  social service agency, that I took a chance on a church, because I knew I needed something more than my agnostic, nature loving philosophies with a side of sci-fi.

I was skeptical. But the little Episcopal church welcomed me with open minded intelligence and introduced me to their “three-legged stool” of scripture, tradition and reason. My questions and doubts were accepted without condemnation. They loved me. This love and acceptance allowed me to become open to learning more about Jesus. The more I learned, the more I wanted to learn about him.

This past Sunday, one of my church friends, a young college student (younger than me anyway) shared that most of his friends are atheists, and he is trying to show them that all Christians aren’t like the conservatives they see in the news.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I know that it’s anyone’s right to be a conservative Christian if they want to. I have beloved friends and family members who are conservative Christians. To tell the truth, I’m becoming more conservative, in my  behavior as I get older. But I’m still liberal and open minded in my beliefs. Maybe that’s why I have beloved friends and family members who are Buddhists, pagans, agnostics, atheists, new agers and eclectics.

I believe in the love of the Jesus who hung out with the poor and the prostitutes and loved them, the revolutionary Jesus who raised women and children up as people to be cared for and listened to instead of property.  I love the Good Shepherd who seeks his lost sheep, not with condemnation, but with love .

GS close up

Open minded, progressive Christians don’t make the news much, but we’re out here.

Oh, and I still like a side of sci-fi, now and then.

 

 

 

 


6 Comments

Looking for a Happy Medium in the Media

Sailboat in November

I declare independence from the mainstream news media! Having become so overwhelmed by the bombardment of negative news stories, I hardly ever watch the morning news anymore. Or the evening news. It used to be a habit, part of my routine. I was afraid I’d miss something. But I’ve had enough of alleged murderers and corporate criminals getting center stage as reporters speculate ad nauseam about all the possible legal strategies that could be employed. I’ve had enough of “reporters” airing the dirty laundry of high-profile celebrities like it’s everybody’s business. My time is too precious to wait for the positive news stories that might or might not appear in the last 5 minutes of the show.   Sometimes I skim the headlines, or try to catch Jon Stewart because, at least he makes me laugh, but for the most part, I ask family members to let me know if there is anything going on in the news I need to know about. I appreciated my daughter telling me the other night, “Hey, there’s a woman from Texas, doing a filibuster about abortion and you can watch it live!”  I watched it until midnight when I realized that Texas was in a different time zone.

I know we need to know what’s going on in the world, I’m just looking for some balance. I  don’t think it’s healthy to have so much focus on the bad news. They say, “that’s what sells.” But I don’t buy it!  The last time I remember extensive coverage of good news was when Chesley Sullenberger landed a plane on the Hudson River and everybody lived. But does anybody remember the name of his copilot?  It was Jeff Skiles. And he did lots of important copilot stuff.  I appreciate seeing how people help each other in natural disasters. That’s finding good news within the bad. But we need more coverage of the good news. What do you think is the ratio of negative to positive news stories? It seems like 90% of the time (or space) is devoted to negative news. Is that because the world is such a horrible place?  Or is that how the picture is being painted for us?

What we focus on, gets bigger. I worry that the predominance of bad news creates more bad news. Being bombarded by negative news can warp our collective minds.  It’s like Dr. Emoto’s water crystals that are warped or don’t even form at all when subjected to negative words. The water that is subjected to words like love and gratitude form beautiful symmetrical crystals.  Dr. Emoto writes that the average human body is 70% water. What are all those negative words and images doing the water in our bodies?

Sure we have a lot of problems, but there’s a lot of good work happening. There is a lot of love and beauty. People help each other. There are plenty of heroes among us. These are the stories we need to pay more attention to and give power to. This, I believe will make our country stronger. If I’ve missed any good news lately, please feel free to share!