Little Changes

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My species has been really pissing me off lately.  Yes, I am human…thanks for asking.

Do you remember the old Rodale’s and Mother Earth magazines?  The news we are receiving now is nothing new.  We were told by many different experts that the planet was not adjusting well to our parasitism.  We were told that chemicals were destroying the environment.  We were told that we were raping the planets resources.  Not only metals and fossil fuels (which are non-renewable), but also the resources of water, air and land, which could be renewable, except for our unwillingness to change our basic selfishness.

So the warnings are nothing new.  We were warned.  So let’s not act surprised, like we had no idea this would happen.  It is like when you set a boundary for a child.  You are very clear about boundaries and consequences, but when the line is crossed and you stick to your parental dictates, there is all this surprise about consequences.

“What?  You are taking away my computer privileges?”

“I told you if you didn’t stop (fill in the blank) you would lose your privileges on the computer.”

Then comes the bargaining, etc and how you deal with all that is your parental prerogative.  I got nothing for you here.  My point is our unwillingness to accept consequences for our own actions.

I have always been careful about what I put into my garden soil.  I eat that stuff.  I do not want weird chemicals and such on my food.  By the way.  We finally have some crocuses peeking through the soil in places, and the snow is almost gone.  We are expecting a little bit later this week, but it will melt right away.  My gardens are a big deal to me.

But…I have not always been a good recycler.  Ok.  I was a terrible recycler.  I was never sure what went in the bin, honestly, other than pop cans and paper.  And it was casually suggested our children use the proper bins for recycling, especially when they changed our bag limit to two per household.  That became interesting, with our six children and many guests.  If you have this kind of limit, you also know about locating people on the street who are under their limit, so you throw the extra bag on their spot.

So let me be clear on this point:  I was one of the worst.  If you had told me 20 years ago that our oceans would be clogged with plastic like they are now, I would have been doubtful.  After DDT, I would have been doubtful we would ever let another chemical toxify the environment.  But we have.  No names, please.  I run a friendly blog here, but we know who you are…we know.Related image

So I have changed some things.  I am now composting any corrugated cardboard into the gardens.  That stuff makes great mulch, and rots nicely.   No more plastic straws on containers.  We pay a lot more attention about what goes where.  I am still leery of composting store-bought produce, as I do not know about the possibility of chemicals in my garden.  Some stuff never degrades. The changes are coming, but the message took a lot time to get through to me.

That is an example.  We are trying to do our part.  Now.  The consequences are rolling in and so change is critical.

You may be thinking.  Great.  Another blog about climate changes, species loss and pollution.  Nothing will change, so shut the fuck up.  (These are actual words I heard someone say…seriously).  But that is not my whole point.

It’s that issue of selfishness.  It comes up all over the place.  Apparently selfishness is an important characteristic for evolution.  We need to be constantly evaluating things in order to make healthy choices.  But, apparently, that does not include evaluating ourselves.  Giggle.  No.  We think our primary task is to evaluate others.Image result for men pants too high funny older man cartoon

So our inherent selfishness drives us to see ourselves as better than others.  It is always “those” people.  Not “us” people.  Fact of life, I suppose.  Maybe we are built that way.  Perhaps religion and philosophy are nothing more than appeals for us to stop being ourselves.  To be someone better.  At the risk of being burned at the stake for blasphemy, you do not need God to be a better person.

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Just make a decision.  It is that easy.  Decide that you will try to be a more positive, self-aware and “other conscious” individual.  I do not tell you to do this because other people are worth it.  Other people will, sooner or later, let you down in some way, so don’t pin your hopes on other people.

I believe recovery from any of the tough events of life comes when we use our evaluative skills to make positive changes in our own person.  Not others.  They are really none of your business, unless you are in some sort of deeper relationship with them than your average Tom, Dick or Harry.  Apologies if I offended Tom, Dick or Harry out there.

Now.  You may not feel great about yourself right away.  Anything worthwhile takes time and consistent effort.  You may look at yourself and decide you are not a very kind person.  Rather sitting around moaning about how other people make it impossible for you to be kind (because they are such asshats…I understand), just work at being kind.

Not for them.  For you.  Fuck them if they don’t appreciate your kindness.  Pearls before swine, as they say.  You are about making your world a better place.  Because it begins with you.  And you are responsible for you.  I think this little blurb explains my point quicker than me.

That is it.  You can’t save the world.  But you can change your world.  Where you are.  Practice makes perfect, or close enough.  Perfection is never the goal.  Self-awareness and then positive change based on those learnings.  Not in a day.  Not in a week.  It is a lifetime thing.

Want your world to be a better place?  Be a little more positive and grateful each day.  Refuse to be drawn into that negative vortex society often creates and create a better world for you.

That is it for today.  I hope you have a great week.

John (still at The Asylum)

KID’S CORNER   (Sarah and I have raised a blended family of four boys and four girls.  We have three grandchildren and likely more on the way.  I made my fair share of terrible parenting decisions, and could likely be described as one of those “toxic parents”.  But we never get a “do-over” with our children, so I thought I would take a little time in each blog to say a word to my kids)

Romance is a wonderful thing.  But we get funny ideas about romance sometimes.  We think that “feeling” should be there all the time.  I have to say…when I was changing diapers, the romance of the event somehow escaped me.  And things change the older you get.  We change, our lives change, and that “other” significant person also goes through change.

And yet we have some weird idea, sometimes (or at least one of the partners does) that romance has to look the same as it did when we first met.  I am not saying that our depth of love for the other person changes, only that it makes sense that as we and our lives change, our relationships also change.

If you are not used to speaking kindly to your partner, either get another partner, or stop being a dick.  Because if you are terribly in love with your partner, there need to be times when you express that fact.

It is nice to hear it sometimes.  Not just the “love you” peck on the way to work, but a moment when you look at the other person and say it with a little feeling.  Perhaps you are not used to talking to other humans and you may make the occasional error:

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but keep working at it, nevertheless.  It will come.  Practice is all.  And your partner will likely help you recognize when you have missed the mark, lol.

You are all good, kind children.  I know this.  You likely picked it up at school.  Please be kind to others.  And especially to the one you love.




I like this quote.  It sounds dadish.

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Hope all is good with you and yours.

Love Dad.

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