I had to create an entire post to have even the slightest chance of having someone at the New York Times read what I had…
2020 – The Year that Wasn’t Easy
An Appreciative Lament
I started out the year feeling kinda spiffy.
Then I fell on my face
Then I cut the very tip of my main guitar finger off. (Ever try to open and apply a band-aid when one hand is already bloody? You can’t. Passive-aggressive sadists have designed it so it can’t be used.)
Which had barely healed when I smashed the tip of my second-most main guitar finger,
But healed! I’m finally able to play piano and guitar again!
My minor woes were nothing compared to the collective wear and loss of 2020. Covid 19, Trump’s fascistic threats, a horrendous local fire, global warming acceleration, wanton murder of black people by overly-machoed cops, threats of WWIII over oil – a perfect mess of stupidity, grief, and anxiety.
It’s been a hard year world-wide. We’re all thrust into our vulnerability, personal and collective. We’re vulnerable to vast climactic realities and minute viral ones. We’re vulnerable to fascist liars backed by rabid fanatics with guns. We’re vulnerable to the loss of mutual community. We’re vulnerable to computers programmed to lie and mislead. We’ve lost lives, businesses, money, comity, and spirit.
One advantage though, is re-appreciating the ordinary goodness of life, the food at the store, the hugs and handshakes, the value of science and journalism, the responsibility and opportunity to be full-fledged citizens, earthlings capable of making it all better.
2021 will still have challenges, but hopefully, it’ll be better. . . God-willing and us-trying.
Like most in Ashland, I masked-up. It wasn’t so much for self-protection as social courtesy and caution. I don’t have the Covid, but others don’t know that, so I mask up to reassure them I’m not spitting the feared virus when I pass or speak. It also participates in a temporary collective means of easily and mostly preventing the spread of the easily contagious problem.
And have avoided the dreaded Covid 19
Meanwhile, I finished remodeling my kitchen
Remodeled a tall deck for my sweetie in North Carolina
Had to build up a new computer (United broke my laptop on a flight) with expert son, Tobias.
All year, I had been letting my beard grow in hopes of playing Santa Claus in my beloved Ashland. We all need some cheer to end a dreadful year!
I even went to the Chamber of Commerce to apply
Only to be turned away due to fears of Covid.
On Solstice, Ashland’s streets were empty.
No carols being sung at the off-kilter flagpole
But the isolation and loss of ordinary community was nothing compared to those in neighboring Talent and Phoenix who suddenly lost everything in a Labor Day firestorm that destroyed almost 3000 structures! The happy homes and crucial businesses turned to ash and dust along with all the contents.
Here are just two of hundreds of photos of thousands of houses and businesses burnt to a crispy gone.
The fire started just down the street from my house and passed by about 100 yards away, then swept through the creek bed, totally burning down house after house. Whole trailer parks and neighborhoods were utterly incinerated.
Spared that plight, son Tobias and I brought down two tall Yolanda Cypress trees. They stood like torches, ready to ignite. We felled them, cut them up saving all the branches as well as the trunks. Free firewood in our own back yard!
Still cutting up trees at 75!
(By the grace of God.)
How lucky I am to have a home, a fireplace, wood to burn, sons I’m proud of, and a cat!
I have veggies to eat, coffee, a computer, my sons, my girlfriend, a car that runs, an electric bike that runs far cheaper and with less pollution, a warm bed in a cool room, health, and plans to finally finish a book I’ve been contemplating and plotting for 50 years.
What’s it about? See the rest of the entries here at my site, a rambling array of mostly sermons that fit my overall theme: how Genesis One (a Good Creation) fixes the stubborn problems due to the mis-explaining Genesis Two and Three (The so-called Fall in the Garden of Eden).
I know most people are not swayed by scripture. Neither am I. It is just plain bad advice to “believe in the Bible.” It’s a mix of a few good passages and a lot of bad ones. Genesis One helps clarify.
Taking it all as “God’s Word” ignores and wastes our own intelligence and conscience. It also wastes God’s good Creation, of which we are made – for which we were made. (By “God” I don’t mean what most resent; I mean the answer for why there is something rather than nothing and how it might work well for all of us.) Elohim God calls every stage of an evolved creation, from light through water to land to plants to animals to humans – “good.” All together on the 6th “day” S’He calls it “very good.”
I agree, not because the Bible says it, but because natural creation is good. It is the goods we’re made of and for.
My “religion” is Natural and Human. It takes reality seriously and joyously. I hope when I start publishing, you’ll like and promote it. Stay tuned. . .
No one asks for my book. Hardly anyone reads my (this) website. I’m not into self-promotion on social media. I’m more interested in writing a love letter to humanity and earthlife, giving reason and advice on restoring Eden and ourselves in it. It’s a bunch of work that probably won’t pay, but I am innerly compelled to get it said, hopefully to beneficial effect.
Meanwhile, check out my other entry for this month – some Reflections recently offered. And thanks for reading my entries at all. I’m trying to keep it light while staying harmonious with reality.