Pre-election Monday

It’s too hot, the cats have thrown up on the rug again, I’m short of sleep, my internet connection keeps cutting out, if I have to hear one more word about the election I’m going to throw up, and I want some steam cleaners to come and blast all the dirt and grime out of my house so I can start over.  AND, it’s a bright, windy, balmy day when I need a gray dank one to match my mood.  Sometimes, we Californians just can’t stand all this damn sunshine!  (This from a woman who complained about the fog all summer long.)

One of my 9-year-old grandsons was here for the weekend, so perhaps I’m suffering from a surfeit of personal interaction.  When I was nine, I used to go off and read books for hours at a time. They don’t seem to do that anymore. They want to watch TV, play games on the computer, or check out salacious YouTube videos, and if they can’t do any of that, they want to talk about all the TV programs, video games, and completely stupid and inappropriate YouTube videos they’ve been watching.  Or, worse yet, talk in exquisite detail about all the lethal weapons that appear in the above. There’s gotta be a better way.

Well, there is a better way, and that’s to get them involved in projects of some sort, or take them out for a romp on the hill, or go to the beach and dodge the sleeper waves.  But all of that requires energy and commitment, both of which I’ve been a little short on lately.

Mostly I’m just tired. The first night, my grandson kept getting up and sneaking onto the computer. You simply cannot let 9-year-olds loose on computers by themselves.  They go right for the worst stuff, then talk about it at school and get in trouble. Besides, it messes with their minds, seriously perverts them.  But it’s like leaving a kid in a room with a box of candy, they just can’t resist.  I thought we had it figured out so the only sites they could get to without a password were pretty harmless, but apparently they’ve outwitted us once again.

The second night, he was so tired from all his shenanigans the night before that he went to bed early and slept right through the raucous party going on at the bottom of the hill until 3 a.m.  I wish I could’ve done the same. I took him to his mom on Sunday morning, then spent the day nodding off every time I tried to do anything, getting just enough sleep that I kept waking up last night, especially since there were 13-pound cats lying on my legs every time I tried to turn over. Grrr.
Such alarming stories from the New York area.  A New York Times article said a ‘realistic estimate’ of the number of people left homeless is 20,000–the majority from public housing. I hadn’t realized that.  All those people with few resources and no place to go–what will happen to them? Will it be like New Orleans, where the displacement of poor people became an excuse for gentrification? They are talking about FEMA trailers again.  Another NYT article was about warnings in 2009 from the American Society of Civil Engineers of the need for surge barriers or tide gates in New York Harbor.  Even if anyone had listened and construction plans put in motion, they wouldn’t have been finished in time for Hurricane Sandy, but maybe for the next one. Will they do anything different this time? My father was a civil engineer.  He would have been so upset at the negligence.

And here in California, the news is full of the out-of-state money pouring into races for the state’s seats in the House and into efforts to defeat the governor’s tax initiative and a drive to support an anti-union initiative. Borders are flimsy these days.  Money can flow through them, just not people.

Who needs alcohol when you have the daily news to muddle your mind?

Two-year election campaigns tend to make you cynical, but nowhere near as cynical as Douglas Adams (from The Restaurant at the End of the Universe):

“The major problem—one of the major problems, for there are several—one of the many major problems with governing people is that of whom you get to do it; or rather of who manages to get people to let them do it to them.
To summarize: it is a well-known fact that those people who must want to rule people are,
ipso facto, those least suited to do it.
To summarize the summary: anyone who is capable of getting themselves made President should on no account be allowed to do the job.”

Matson, St. Louis Post Dispatch

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2 Responses to Pre-election Monday

  1. Casey says:

    Hope you can get good rest soon. And Ha! I’m in the middle of The Hitchhikers Guide to The Galaxy as we speak (3rd time) and am thinking about reading the rest. Last I read the other books was high school, but I think I remember liking So Long And Thanks For All The Fish. Small world –

    Take care – –

    • sswl says:

      I loved Adams’ books, Casey. Read them for the first time only a few years ago, after my kids looked at me incredulously when I said I’d never heard of him.

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