___________ March 07, 2016__________

Sad State of the World

We put in our July camping reservations, this weekend.  That’s the only trip that *really* matters… because we’re camping with Brian’s aunt/uncle, grandpa/grandma, and one or other of the cousins.

We had our Shabbos Friday night instead of as a dinner on Saturday, because we were having a ‘nice’ supper.  It was good, and free up the afternoon for Brian.  He brought home a ton of steel – had a lot of work for the weekend.  The good news is that it’s run-by-itself stuff, where he can program the machine to cut, and let it go for an hour or two at a time.  I like those jobs – he’s not stuck out in the barn, that way.

I feel like we’re watching a LOT of movies, lately.  For us, anyhow.  Friday night we watched ‘Mrs. Winterbourne’.  The kids absolutely LOVED it.  I didn’t remember Bill being so about-face in his behavior.  It seemed off… but I still love the movie.  They couldn’t figure out who the killer was, and they hooted and LOVED the ‘Paco Taco’.  Silly, but fun.

It’s funny – I haven’t told you about we have a standing Monday night joke going with the Taco Bell workers.  They all know BFF and I, because every time we have to figure out what name to give them.  Last week I was Clara, and she was Lorelai (<< something about a ‘Gilmore Girls’ phase?  Not sure what it is, though.)   I’m thinking come Monday I’m going to be ‘TacoBella’.  *giggles!*  Anyhow, we walk in, and (it’s a VERY black part of town) the girls at the counter say, “Oh, look’a who just showed up!  Who you gonna be tonight, girl?!”  And it’s kind of a fun thing.  Even the guys making the food get into it.  I’m glad, because I forget who I’m supposed to be, and they’re all, “Yo!  Blondie!  You’re Clara!”  and I blush and say, “Oh, crap, I forgot!!  Thanks.”  They just laugh and shake their heads.  It breaks the monotony of the night, y’know?

We went to the movie (‘Pan’) on Saturday at the Woodland location.  Woodland was THE biggest mall in GR when I was a kid (now it’s been given over to the low-lifes, as THE happenin’ place is now RiverTown Mall – I won’t go there.)  But it was insanity at Woodland – people weren’t parking in orderly spots in the lot.  In fact, we were DRIVING down yellow lines in this wonky path between people who were double parked, taking up two spots (front and back, or two side-by-side!)… it was absolute chaos.  People couldn’t even get thru the rows, and were just stopping where they were and parking.  I’ve never seen anything like it.  Utter anarchy.  It was disastrous.  We ended up parking as FAR from the other cars as possible and hiking the parking lots in!

And in the theatre – people weren’t coming in until after the movie started (not during the previews, which aren’t before showtime, anymore, but AT showtime, to buy people time… they were coming in AFTER that!!), were shouting and had cellphones held up so the glare ruined the film, kids screaming, people going in and out and dropping stuff and digging for stuff and talking.  NOBODY could hold still…!  It was just craziness.  I always wanted the superpower of moving things with my mind, but it’s a *really* good thing God never gave it to me, because an entire parking lot worth of cars would be out in a field somewheres, and the irritationpeople in the theatre would be in Beijing, about now.  😛

But seriously… it’s like society has degraded SO badly, that all that’s left are the dregs of humanity.  There is no consideration.  There’s no responsibility, there’s no logic, there’s… nothing!!  We’d seen the same kind of thing one Saturday morning at swim – there was a basketball tourney at the same athletic center one morning, and the parking lot was parked up like monkeys had driven in.  I thought maybe it was just stupid high school boys in Hicktown at the crack of a.m., but it isn’t – it’s EVERYONE.  It’s terrifying.

Along the same lines, we went back to our old town yesterday.  My friend is drama instructor at a community college up there, and we always go and support her by seeing her fall/spring productions.  Our old town used to be really pretty – it was this really close-knit, artsy community with a lot of participation and beauty and…  Then Frigidaire pulled out and went to Mexico, taking over 3,000 jobs from the town.  Since then, it’s just become a wasteland.  And not just that – everyone has kind of ‘given up’, it seems.  The houses are peeling, there’s junk outside, everywhere.  Stuff hanging from the windows.  Trash along their mailboxes they haven’t bothered to clean up.  Everything is dirty and old and broken.  Our house…!  They ripped the wood off the fronts of half the barns, doors are missing, stuff is just cluttered and nasty.  It’s sad to see.

The play only had TWO students in it.  They each had eight roles to play, as a result, and with no time for costume changes, they just stayed in the same outfit and changed hats to be different characters.  The problem was, neither of them gave a crap, and didn’t take ON other characters.  They played the prince the same as they played the fish as they played the witch.  It was… kind of pitiful and embarrassing.  There were *maybe* five families in the audience.  The college is talking about shutting down the arts department, entirely, and my friend is tearing her hair out.  She has no students, no funds, no support from the school…  Thing is, the state gives grants, but in exchange for the $$, they want to see job results, and so the $$ *only* goes to business classes.  So music, art, literature?  It’s all being dropped.  Students don’t have the commitment to put towards playing an instrument or learning lines for a show, anyhow.  They’re busy texting or being YouTube followers.  People don’t want the responsibility of having to show up regularly.  The world…!  It’s really failing.

Another friend is music director at the same college.  She’s retiring – arts professor says music professor is tired of fighting and spending all of her time appealing to the college board for extensions and support.  She says there are five data processors in the office of the college, now, and in order to justify it, every teaching job is now about ‘providing data’ to be processed.  They don’t teach, they have to come up with numbers to report.  The school is talking about closing the theatre, entirely!  I directed my first show (‘Crossing Delancey’) there… so it’s bittersweet.  Anyhow, music prof is doing one last *grand* show – Carmina Burana – and then she’s done.  It’s really the end of an era.  Art prof’s not even sure they’re going to replace her!  She thinks they’re going to go the route of a ‘technical college’, instead.

THIS is why I’m trying to talk my kids out of having children.  The world is no longer a good place to bring kids into.  It’d be bad.  We’re failing, and fast.  And MY GOODNESS, isn’t this upbeat on a Monday?!?!  (((((O_o)))))

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