I have too much crap to catch up on.
Seriously, the thing about being out sick for two and a half days is that I’m inevitably absolutely swamped with emails and random stupid crap when I get back. Today, of course, is no exception. I probably don’t really have time to write, but I WANT to write, and I need to, and so I am doing exactly that.
Thank you for your well wishes, by the way. It was a sinus or possibly upper respiratory infection, it knocked me flat on my ass, and although I’m still a little weak and tired and congested and coughy, I feel a hundred and ten times better today than I did yesterday.
It occurs to me that one source of my recent major writer’s block here is that I’ve been censoring myself, and that annoys me. It’s something I vowed never to do on this page, but I’ve found (or convinced myself) that it’s necessary to do exactly that sometimes.
I’m avoiding writing about work because I’ve been slammed with what I’m sure is a very healthy dose of paranoia, and although I have all kinds of freakin’ awesome stories about how terribly Dilbert my office can be sometimes, I’m taking a break from that.
And then there’s politics. I have plenty to say about the Presidential race, and I have quite deliberately chosen not to say it here. With the exception of my furious response to having my bumper sticker stolen (something I actually regretted a bit after writing but left up), I’ve stayed pretty true to my word on this, and I’m going to tell you why.
It’s not that I’m afraid of offending people – Lord knows I’m quite capable of offending tons of people without uttering a single word about politics, and most of the time, other people’s feelings on a subject are not enough to make me curb what I’m about to say. That may sound selfish, but it’s true. At the same time, though, it is about me trying to be sensitive to my readership, in a way.
You’d have to be living in a cave to miss how absolutely, unbelievably nasty this race has been. Honestly, I don’t know if it’s any worse than past elections, because I didn’t really get into politics until after I graduated from college – so, as unfortunate as it sounds, I paid very little attention to previous presidential races during my lifetime. But this one – I know for sure it’s nasty, and sometimes it seems like I can’t find a single place in the world (physical or virtual) that is free of this particular turmoil.
Like many of you, I visit a large number of web sites daily – probably way more than I should be, considering that I’m at work. But in the past few weeks/months, I’ve found myself avoiding some places I used to frequent. I have a lot of trouble dealing with the battle cries, the disenchantment, and most of all, the sheer anger I’m running into everywhere I go. The “all you stupid fucking liberals/conservatives” and the “our candidate is a genius, yours is a jackass” and the “anyone who thinks X is a complete idiot” themes are really getting to me.
I’m very sensitive, and when I run across these posts, I’m finding myself feeling personally attacked. And I know this is a ridiculous response on my part, that probably very few people out there specifically feel like I personally am a complete moronic lemming because of what I believe in or because of whose bumper sticker was stolen from the back of my car. But I’m thin-skinned, and sometimes I find that I can’t separate the writing from the writer, and then I’m tempted to defend my position and that’s a futile effort and it just gets worse.
Hugo wrote well on something like this last week, and shared his plan for the days leading up to the election. Here’s mine – I’m not going to talk much about it, if at all.
I care deeply about the outcome of this election. I have some very well-defined opinions on many aspects of it, and I have gotten involved in ways I never would have considered a few years ago. Please don’t make the mistake of thinking that I’m avoiding it because I’m uneducated or because I don’t care, or because I don’t want people to disagree with me.
The thing is, I have other outlets for my political ramblings, and you have many excellent outlets for whatever kind of political commentary whets your particular appetite.
I’ll talk about some other stuff here, like how I played The Sims 2 for like five hours straight yesterday while hacking and coughing on the couch, and have gotten so obsessed with it that I created a family with a young man designed to complement the teenager in my main family’s looks and personality so that they could get married when she grows up. And also how I’m so obsessed that I shrieked in horror when my main family’s mother got electrocuted trying to repair the dishwasher, and how my own actual real-life family has started to make little comments and weird faces when I inadvertently yell things like “Quit playing that damn computer game and go get the baby off the floor and feed it, you idiot” at the computer screen.
I just want them to grow up well. Is that so wrong?