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Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Fall Blues (or Blahs)

Yesterday was a beautiful fall day - eighty degrees, sunny and calm. And both Dagmar and I came home after work, shut the windows and sat on the couch. We're both blah. Neither of us has energy to get much done, other than drag ourselves to work and back. I attribute it to our advancing sissification. We're getting so far away from nature and the outdoors in general that we're becoming wussies. The trees make Dagmar sneezy and weepy this time of year, and the grass makes me itchy and cross. When I was a child on the farm, this didn't happen (scratch scratch). It simply doesn't seem worth the effort to go outside and sit in our little patch of grass - we have to contend with noisy (and rude) neighbors across the fence, and our view includes rather a lot of barbed wire. There really shouldn't be barbed wire in a residential district.

Fall always seems to be the season of death to me. Nature undergoes a slow, lingering strangulation by the frosty fingers of winter. It's hard for me to maintain a good attitude, knowing that the next six months are going to be cold, rainy, muddy and ugly. "But the colors sure are pretty!" you may exclaim, pointing to a tree. I'm color-blind. I think I see about half the "pretty colors" of fall. Oh well...

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Last weekend Dagmar and I went out to Ma & Pa's farm. Our happy goddaughter Maddy was there (see left, click for larger photo) along with her older brother and sister. It was fun to see the kids, and it was good for the soul to be outside again, even for a little bit. Dagmar took the kids for a nature hike, complete with a bugle boy and a drummer girl (I doubt they saw any bunny rabbits in the woods with that kind of racket going on) whilst I helped my brother and Pa drywall the new addition. Having never dealt with drywall before, I spent a lot of time hovering about, trying to be helpful without actually messing things up. It's a tricky thing to do, but I'm getting good at it.

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Mudslides in California, the Gulf Coast in disarray, floods in the east, our government falling apart at the seams (Brown, Simonsen, Plame, Miers, etc.), al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden (remember him?) still running around somewhere, the Bush administration spending TONS of money we don't have (that will come back to haunt us, trust me) on bridges in Alaska... It's a spooky world! But what really upsets me are the things closer to home - and I think it's all related. I've noticed a lot more graffiti in my neighborhood lately. I've noticed that my take-home pay has remained the same for years, but my energy bills, insurance bills, and food bills are going through the roof. I've noticed fewer police in my neighborhood. I've noticed more trash in the gutters. I've noticed our government allows torture now, while condemning terrorism. I've noticed that torture and terrorism are very nearly the same thing, the only difference is who holds the whip.

It scares me.


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