Saturday, April 2, 2011

Inspirational Saturday: Duck and Cover!


Yeah, yeah, it's a sign of the times. People are rushing to get iodine tablets and know where the nearest nuclear plant sits. So far as I can tell, it looks like central northern Wyoming might be your safest bet, if but if you don't see a real industry there to draw you to it, just invest in some iodine tablets and sit where you are.

Well, I hear a lot of people saying this is some sort of sign that all hell is breaking loose. First of all, these disasters have been happening forever and even to the extreme of wiping out the dinosaurs, so let's quit bellyaching.

We've had plagues and natural disasters always. The problem now is that a huge majority of the people in the ring of fire live near the water where there will be the quakes and the tsunamis. In the old days, perhaps a small village went. Nowadays, it's likely to be an entire industry that's obliterated or an enormous population. Truth be told, it only seems horrible because now everyone has cameras and cell phones and satellite dishes and we can see it all as it's happening. In the old days, it happened, but we had no clue it did.

This whole horrible set of events in Japan had me thinking about how there's not a generation that hasn't undergone some horrible trials and lots of fearfulness. My parents told of the depression era and prohibition.

I hate to show my age, but I recall in my earliest elementary school years being told to duck under the desk as they ran the siren for a practice for what we do in a nuclear event. I grew up knowing that at any moment some big “boom!” could make me and everything around me turn to dust in seconds. Having that looming over the background of your happy childhood is not a pleasant thing, especially when your parents watch Vietnam war on their TV during suppertime and grumble about the USSR and what the Reds are up to next.

We have so many cautionary things through our lifetimes. I remember the threat of the bunny man, a 6-foot tall man in a bunny suit who supposed diced up people with an ax. The 70s hailed a lot of fear about pollution and its ramifications resulting in some creepy and weird movies like “The Prophecy,” “Food of the Gods,” and “Day of the Animals” where the Earth attacks.

Do you remember fear of 2000 and computers going berserk and losing our grid? Remember our color coded warnings following 9-11? Remember Anthrax? Bird Flu? I still have duct tape, plastic, surgical masks and gloves. I stored up a crap-load of foods for the Millennium. Oh, and during Anthrax, there was the time I took the reporter's advice and threw my mail into the microwave only to have my TV Guide blow up and catch fire because there were metallic designs on the insert pages.

Okay, so it's inevitable that every generation must have its cautions and warnings, threats and fears. Terrorism and jobs seem to be the ones for this generation coming up. It will only seem more and more pressing as we live in a more crowded world in which one incident can knock out many lives and threaten even more, where cameras are everywhere to document it.

I say take a deep breath, feel secure in your own capabilities to discern a threat and then plan accordingly. That time hasn't come in my lifetime of (blank) years, but I will tell you that it didn't in my parents' lifetime either and likely not in our kids' lifetimes. There will just be many topics of obsession whether it is global warming, lack of resources, natural disasters or war. The reason man has made it so far is that he learned to beat that which killed him, as we made cures for diseases that knocked out generations long ago and learn to build buildings that can move with earthquakes and allow for less damage. We only learn when we have to. Then, we excel. We're just on the cusp of excelling again.

14 comments:

  1. “Through humor, you can soften some of the worst blows that life delivers. And once you find laughter, no matter how painful your situation might be, you can survive it.” - Bill Cosby

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  2. Paranoia is the 'in' thing these days. In local Idaho news, they not only asked if we were prepared for an earthquake like Japans, but what about a tsunami as well? Could we handle a tsunami? Are our buildings safe?

    More importantly, if it's big enough to swallow up all of Oregon and Washington, how fucked are we? No amount of preparedness is going to help.

    Maybe an ark...

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  3. it's extremely scary whats going on in the world those days.

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  4. HN;
    That's absolutely my philosophy because when it comes down to it, it's just us friends and family dealing with life's shit together and there needs to be comedic relief to break tension and problem solve. That is also why on a ghost hunt, I want my team to do some strobe light dancing, joke around a bit before we get to the work. People's tensions relax and creativity, new thinking and problem solving occurs.

    LII;
    Hahaha. I can't tell you how many nights I sit up worrying about Idaho getting a tsunami and I'm really concerned no one is considering the obvious issue--hurricanes! Your state is so vulnerable. hee hee

    Echo; Some of it is seriously concerning, but the majority of what happens every day, everywhere is just fine and working right.

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  5. I do remember 1999 into 2000. I regret not making money off of that.

    I live 90+ miles from Three Mile Island, so I am not even going to bother trying to run if that poo hits the fan. Maybe I'll make a good mutant.

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  6. RR;
    Are you sure you aren't already a 3-mile mutant? I agree. Acquire skills, believe in yourself and then move on. The day to day is really what matters not the end.

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  7. a population that is constantly on edge is far easier to control. Caesar knew this, King Charles II of England new this, and we're seeing it on steroids in our own culture 10 years after a really bad September morning. One of the reasons I moved from the states was because I just couldn't deal with it anymore.

    But you are right, natural disasters have and always will happen. Now that we are so jammed up in huge cities like New Orleans and Fukushima, one can't help but see the tragedy magnified and it is only a couple of leaps of (faulty) logic away to assume we are being smited by an angry God.

    My take on the world ending in 2012 is thus: if the Mayans were so freaking smart, what are they up to nowadays? How is that Mayan space program coming along? And if you open up the quatrains of Nostradamus and really read them, you can literally apply them to anything they are so vague. That guy was such a magnificent con artist that he still has people fooled hundreds of years later...

    Yes I am a remorseless skeptic, but I dig it!

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  8. Aaron;
    You're too highly intelligent to buy bullshit and you're not a sheep. That bodes well for your survival while others are scrambling for answers from political and religious leaders. I agree about the fear thing. Bush fucking had that down a science. It was not different than the leader of Iran making people fearful of the West. Color coding threat warnings? No wonder our economy went down the shitter. We were too scared to do anything, take any risks. America is fucking based on taking risks, isn't it? Or WASN'T it?

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  9. As I've always said...things run in cycles. The natural disasters that seem so prevalent now are just cycling. We are due or even overdue for it. Everything runs in cycles. Period. Not to mention because we have media now, they LOVE to make things worse than they are. They thrive on the bad...to Hell with any good that may be around. Bastards!

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  10. Life has always had terrible things happen, situations which we can not explain nor understand. Millions and millions of lives lost in every era, every century, every day to natural and artificial events. The media simply shows us the ignorance which we decide to turn a blind eye to.

    We live with the delusions that within our new 'civilized' and 'developed' world that bad things can not happen to us. Yet, the flu still kills numerous people, the Black Plague still kills on average 2000 people a year. These things exist and we just choose to ignore them.

    They're terrible and upsetting that so many lives need to be ended by natural events. It is simply the worlds way of balancing out the expanding population of the world, but who knows the next Enstien of the person who was to cure cancer and/or aids. We bring these natural disasters to our attention to explain our own lives.

    The world is not going to change simply because we have highly developed technology or medicine or whatever. Things do not change simply because we want it too. The only difference between now and then, as you said Sharon, is that our interconnectivity has brought these things to our attention.

    But the world is not going to hell, the world is not going to destroy itself in the next year simply because a calender ended. The world has been turning and existing for a billion plus years. We have technology to explain how Earthquakes and Tsunamis and numerous other 'natural' disasters happen, and they have been happening.

    Our delusions of security and protected civilizations allow us to go through life. Our mind is simply complimenting our global world to help us function everyday, else-wise our ignorant fears would turn all of agoraphobics. It's terrible but it has been happening since the beginning of the world.

    I apologize for the rant.

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  11. I was sent to the Principal's Office for asking how my wooden desk would save me from a giant radioactive fireball. hee hee hee

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  12. I love to hear my insightful readers. Y'all really have a grasp on it. I admit that, having lost over 2 dozen loved ones in my lifetime, I know that all you really have is the moment and if you aren't in the moment, making it fun, having a blast, then you're missing the memories you have when things go bad. Today, I giggled my head off while making a video of Dale the Doll doing karaoke (tomorrow afternoon's post) and I realized that in those moments, I was making giggly wonderful memories and that means I appreciate every moment, I live it, I'm interactive with it, I make it novel. Now, you inspired me to do the next inspiration Saturday on making your life novel.

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  13. The sellers of fear do profit from all this mess.

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  14. Adrian; Yeah, I wish I had invested in Duct Tape dammit!

    Barry; I got in trouble for hiding in the coat closet. My desk was beside the windows. I was like "no way!"

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