It has been a quiet week around the humble abode. But then again, most of them are. That is because I have managed to construct for myself a very boring and unchanging life.
That may sound like hell for a lot of people, but for me it is just fine. As someone who lived through almost constant drama and upheaval as a child, I vowed, very much like Scarlett O’hara did as she was digging rotten potatoes out of a war-savaged field, that I would never again have pandemonium in my life. I always felt that chaos makes for strange bedlam fellows. Therefore, I have consciously rid my life of tumult.
At least, I have eliminated any that is a result of my own actions.
The actions of others, however, is something for which our hands are generally tied. Most of the laws that are in the books of our various societies more or less restrict our reactions to blatant outrages to (1) grinning and (2) bearing it, and in that order.
Vigilantism is frowned upon, no matter how effective it may be in a very few individual cases. In larger data sets, it is, in itself, a form of chaos.
Summer has announced her departure and has been going from office to office, saying her goodbyes quietly. She seems to delight in dragging them out for as long as possible, whereas the rest of us wish she would just get on with it.
Autumn has been named as Summer’s replacement and she has been slowly moving into her new offices, changing the décor from greens and blues to yellows, oranges, and browns.
For those of us in the rank and file, the changes have been mostly cosmetic. We have to go on about our business as if nothing has changed. We still have to get up every morning and trudge to work (even if that work is now in our own homes, and not in a remote office). We still have to pay bills and buy groceries and cook meals and do laundry and perform little repairs around the house. It doesn’t matter if it is 40 C degrees outside, or zero.
Never mind the show … work must go on.
However, I submit to you that we are still living in the most blessed era that ever was. There may have been past ages that were more glorious in terms of architecture or music or art or even enlightenment. But in terms of quality of life for the common person, we have them all beat by a country mile.
When I get up in the morning and stagger down to my pantry to see about breakfast, my decision is what to eat … not whether or not I will eat at all. The same holds true for lunch, dinner, and snacks.
When I go to work, I am staring at a glowing screen and tapping on an ergonomic keyboard. The worst I have to fear is carpel tunnel syndrome or perhaps a stiff neck. I do not have to worry that I will lose a limb in a thresher, or an eye to flying bits of rock in a quarry, or that I will die at the ripe old age of 25 from breathing in coal dust from the mine I work in.
I get to keep a majority of my wages, and not turn them over to someone in the landed gentry or nobility. I do not have to buy my goods at the company store. And, I in fact get wages, and am not working for free for a pharaoh or king.
My house is filled with electronic doo-dads, central air conditioning, hot and cold running water, soft things on which to sit or lay or walk, and a refrigerator to keep fresh food right here on the premises for weeks at a time. There are even machines to wash my clothes for me.
At what other time in history did any of this exist, or was even possible?
None. These are all relatively recent developments.
Yes, we have problems. Some of them even seem intractable.
But I am 100% confident that we will solve all of them, because that is what we do. It is what we have always done.
One could make the argument that we have spent the last 10,000 years solving a lot of really, really hard problems. We are down to a relative few problems left to solve, albeit thorny ones.
We will solve them.
And we will go on to great things … together.
Because that is what we do.