Rather than try to expand yesterday's posting after the fact and risk losing whole chunks of it (editing new posts on David's computer, I suffer many a slip), I'm starting over today. Negativity, chronic cough, isolation--these were the--fiends?--that sent me to bed early last night. ("Torpor and sloth, torpor and sloth, these are the _______ that spoil the broth." These are the WHAT? Cooks? Anyone know?) I needed to re-read Marilynne Robinson's Gilead for a discussion group, and lying still and not moving kept the cough at bay. Up early in the dark this morning, I found the supportive comment of Brooklyn's beloved Book Nerd, along with a couple of private e-mails from family members. Then, what a treat! A brief comment appeared from Neige, the young college student in China whose blog, "Pays de Neige," has been such a lovely window for me into her world. Neige blogs in French (which is how I happened to find her blog), and the comment she left me in English is brief, but it made my heart sing: "America is a beautiful country." So thanks to Neige and Book Nerd, I am feeling once again the "joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart" and am resolved not to let anyone take it away from me. We are going to have, as a Norwegian bachelor farmer friend of mine likes to say, "a grownup for president"! We are going to have a man in the White House who sees his constituency as all Americans! It's morning, it's morning!
I do want to add a postscript to what I wrote yesterday. It wasn't that the negative remarks went unchallenged. I and others challenged the false religion claims, for example. Other remarks that were neither claims nor epithets were harder to meet. "Oh, I didn't mean it that way" was the reply when a speaker was called on some oblique utterance. But no, no one was simply looking the other way and pretending not to hear. Voices were raised, and fingers were wagging (on all sides! in that scolding gesture that seems second nature to our species. So that's another good thing, I guess. Freedom of speech includes freedom to judge and respond to the speech of others. How often Americans hamstring themselves with self-imposed gag orders (to mix metaphors shamelessly), thinking they should not allow themselves the freedom to criticize anything said by anyone else, since we all have "freedom of speech"! Huh?
Well, I hadn't expected it yesterday, didn't see it coming, was blindsided and laid low emotionally, but that was only temporary. I'm up again today, and I'll get back up every time, as long as I have breath. Not giving up is part of the answer, but how we move forward is crucial, too. Positive energy...kindness...joining hands....
When I googled "Election Euphoria" this morning, I got a lot of results about the stock market falling and euphoria "fading" as "reality" sets in. (As if only bad stuff is real, I think to myself.) Well, that's putting a lot of meaning on one day's slide, as the market has been nothing lately if not volatile, with no discernible long-termtrends. It takes huge jumps, the gamblers sell to consolidate their losses, and it plunges again. Too much temperature-taking, I say. For most of us, daily life is a bit more predictable than a Dow-Jones graph, and, anyway, we have more to do than chart that over which we have no control. Tao vs. Dow.