Saturday, May 21, 2011

Quit Being Part of the Problem

S.E.P., for those of you who are not ubernerds like me and have not read the third book from the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series, is what is known as "somebody else's problem". The SEP is a staple of American life. If it's not happening directly to us, for example, some knucklehead in a Subaru cutting you off in traffic, it's not our problem. It's somebody else's problem. Natural disasters, war, social movements, environmental movements, these and other things are often considered to be SEPs unless they are occurring on our doorstep.
    An unfortunate reality, because if we were to begin noticing the SEPs out there, and make it our problem, we wouldn't be so concerned about the fate of the world, and we might actually have some optimism about the future. Bad economy? That's somebody else's problem. War in Afghanistan? That's S.E.P. too. Climate change? S.E.P. When we all give ourselves permission to say it's SEP, it stifles the world and smothers the possibility of finding a solution.
    So, stop being part of the problem, and start being part of the solution. Stop saying it's S.E.P. Stuff like climate change, the economy, and natural disasters are ALL our problems, whether we like it or not.
I'm being a little preachy today because some nut thinks today is the end of the world, and I figure I'm allowed, being sane. But in the case that the world is still here tomorrow, a good piece of advice moving forward is to eliminate the mindset that everything difficult or ugly or unpleasant is S.E.P. Things are only going to get worse with that attitude.
    So, dear readers, if we can work on a little compassion, or empathy, even if it's for our own selfish reasons, maybe we can push out the date of the actual end of the world. And, make the time until then a little better for everyone. Preachity preach preachy. Apologies. But I think since this is positive, solution-oriented, and non-prophesying preaching, maybe it's not as hubristic (I know that's not a word, but maybe it will be now...) as this dude who's predicting the rapture will occur today.
    As far as I can tell, Saturday morning cartoons still aired, my horoscope was pretty optimistic, playoff hockey is still on, there's even a bit of blue sky out my window, and I haven't heard anything particularly ominous on the news. But of course, there are still about 11 hours left of the day in my timezone, so I suppose it's a wait and see. But again, Skynet isn't self aware, no zombies are marching stupidly on my street in search of brains, and the Poudre isn't flooding. So, I'm thinking we'll just have to wait for 2012, or for the next attention-seeking nut who decides he knows better than anyone else about the end of the world.
And.... Tampa Bay just scored. 3 TIMES! All tied up! Hell didn't freeze over just yet!

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