Tuesday, July 17, 2012

things could be worse...

Things could be worse.

Here in the U.S., the sun rises on a day the weather forecaster says will be hot and humid -- in the 90's (F). Breathing is hard for me and my joints ache. Locally, a man who was apparently frustrated that his air conditioning didn't work trashed the the office in the apartment complex where he lives and police were called. Heat presses down, strips away more superficial concerns and ... well, it's easy to see where that man was coming from.

But things could be worse.

A news report states that half of the United States is now living in drought conditions not seen since the 1950's. Crops are wilting. Food and energy prices are likely to be affected. The price of corn has doubled to $7.72 per bushel in the last two months.

But things could be worse.

In Syria, a country wracked by a civil war that western countries refuse to call a civil war, under-equipped Sunnis engaged in a fierce battle in the capital, Damascus, yesterday. They had no back-up as they squared off against the regime's helicopter gun ships and tanks, and wounded men lay in the streets calling out for help where there was no help, according to a TV report.

When I was a kid, insistent adults sometimes encouraged their reluctant children to eat their broccoli: "Think of the starving children in China."

Be thankful for what you've got. Things could be worse.

But as with the broccoli-hating kids, the mind rebels at faraway comparisons -- faraway comparisons that can be measured in thousands of miles or a just a few feet: I don't care if things could be worse; I care that they could be better ... for me.

The sun rises on a day the weather forecaster says will be hot and humid. Its insistence strips away my other concerns. I don't want to be achy and breathless and there is nothing I can do about the 'starving children in China.'

But the sun has not yet gained enough force to strip away the old habit of "better" and "worse." This is not to say it can't or won't. Just to say that it hasn't yet ... and in the interim, I can still make a hundred comparisons and see a thousand contrasts.

Who would I be without my complaints and worries, my sympathy for a guy who trashes the office in his apartment complex? It might be nice to glide around proclaiming, "no worries," but if there were actually no worries, why would anyone proclaim it?

Things could be better.

Things could be worse.

The sun, I imagine, is as patient as I am impatient.

Why anyone insists on stabbing spiritual endeavor in the heart beats me. What good is a corpse? I suppose I could come up with some explanations, but explanations never explained anything.

Hell, I can raise the dagger of "better" and "worse" with the best of them, but that doesn't mean I can't catch glimpses of this mealy-mouthed murderer.

Not everyone has to be as stupid as I am.

No comments:

Post a Comment