Today I bought Mrs S a bunch of red roses. No reason. I saw a bunch of supermarket blooms on a display and thought to myself “She’ll like those.” So I bought them. For no other reason than I thought it would bring a smile to her face. Her smiles please me. They are high on the list of my favourite things in life.
In these times of digital witch burning otherwise known as ‘cancel culture’, partisan politics, and groupthink, I think we all need a link with our favourite things. At present there is too much negativity flash flooding down the digital and media channels at us. So we must scramble up the banks of sanity using whatever handholds we can find or be swept away on a tide of manufactured mass psychosis. See video below.
For me, the little handholds against falling into a bottomless pit of Menticide are the returns I get from random acts of kindness to those I love. The gift of roses or a bottle of wine. Taking my wife on a day out to places like the Hazel Chocolate Mountain in North Clare. Which, let me add, makes very nice choccies indeed. Giving her a random hug. Telling her I love her.
I give her my time when she wants to vent. Room to dree her own weird when she’s not in the mood for my often lame wisecracks. Jokes like when I saw a sign saying “Sheepdog Demonstrations” which made me ask frivolously ; “What are the Sheepdogs demonstrating for? Larger flocks? Better dog food?” Mrs S didn’t like that one much. My career in stand up is definitely dead in the water.
Yet even that kind of response grounds me. Gives me boundaries. Which I sometimes ignore, just to show there’s still a sarky old Bill Sticker behind the face I normally show to the world. Just to let her know I’m paying attention. Which in turn lets me keep a grip on myself when all the counter intuitive restrictions feel too oppressive to bear. Giving me a place to stand firm in the universe when it seems everything has gone completely AWOL and contradictory. When all the messaging from the mainstream is fear, fear, fear. Yet when I look into the numbers I don’t see the justification for that fear. Just a bunch of people who have totally lost their heads over a virus that has already done it’s worst and is not doing anything like the damage that is too often intimated.
For myself, my main concerns are monetary. What these meddling restrictions will do to the overall economy and in process the resources I’ve been able to squirrel away for a new home and a little investment capital besides. But even then as a thoughtful man, I’m not simply doing this for myself, this is for my family, for those I care about.
I make no claims to infallibility because I’ve been wrong about a few things in the past. Not everything, but a few. However, the knowledge that I’m often just as full of shit as the next guy is no bad thing. It gives me distance. And distance from the current crazy crapshoot is no bad thing.