Summertime Blues

We barely touch 80° today and I’m already feeling it. I don’t do well with unstructured time or heat. And now I have the tiny downside to my move…no central air. First world problems. I’m still in a better head space and I have some preparation done, more to do (always more to do). I also (as usual) got very little done this weekend which was not good as my next few days will be properly slammed.

All of Cascadia is preparing for an early heatwave and I really do think the weather extremes of the last few years are the new normal, not some aberration—this is climate change. I worry that some of the more extreme speculative fiction climate stories I’ve read point the way to our disastrous near future. More fires. More floods. More earthquakes. A few tsunamis in unexpected places. I don’t want to see the Cascadia subduction zone fire off any more than I want extreme heat to make the American Midwest, parts of India & Asia, or parts of Australia actually untenable for human habitation. I’m not keen on water or food shortages. I fear the diseases that will make Covid-19 look like a minor cold.

We don’t know what’s coming other than a need for people to band together, exercise compassion (which feels in shorter and shorter supply if one follows any news), and regional solutions for world problems. The climate crisis won’t be solved by one major shift; it will be solved by 10,000 solutions that fit various regions around the world. We have to look to the past, find technologies that work for where we live, pull together in communities, protect our most vulnerable members, and do the best we can with what we have.

We have to listen.

I’m positive that no government is truly prepared to listen. I doubt most institutions are prepared to listen. I am confident that the solutions lie in with the people who have had to make do…with the people who have been forced to innovate.

I fear we will slip back towards the worst kind of tribalism and othering of people who should be part of our tribes. We’ve already driven head-first into a binary rage system where anyone who isn’t “like me” is other rather than someone to be treated humanely.

Who’s going to listen to me?

May the whirlwinds you reap be full of hope rather than fear…


The Tone

I read Naomi Alderman’s The Power as soon as it came out, more than once. I found it fascinating in the way where I wanted a sequel that explored the world Neil Armon comes from. He’s fictionalized a past the we almost live in and now that there’s a version on Prime in technicolor glory, I want a second season that explores 5,000 years in a future that’s “recovered” from the story’s ending…

I also wanted to see a Handmaid’s Tale that dug deeper into the transition. One that isn’t afraid to kill its darlings in the inevitable revolutions.

The problem these shows have is how seriously they take the preachiness. Feminism is stronger when women stand together as, strangely, season 5 of RHOM proved with the fame seeking & embracing “housewives” pulling together for one of their own. The Bravo franchises may have those who preach, but it gleefully embraces the “hoisted on one’s own petard” school of entertainment.

I think a world ruled by women would be just as corrupt as a world ruled by men—oh, the human nature!

I also think that victims don’t have to become bullies. Some become protectors. Some become advocates for change. Some become iconoclasts. And some fall into the corruption of power.

People of all walks of life can become corrupted by power. That’s sort of the point of both The Power, The Handmaid’s Tale, Bravo franchises, and politics of every time and place and space.

Not even stories can manage to truly create a perfect world.

We need conflict to grow. We need darkness to understand light. We have to struggle to find out what we can do and who will support us on the way.

I have only recently started to see a flicker of light at the end of a dark tunnel and I am not sure I’ll ever be able to adequately thank the people who just provided emotional support, who kept on being my friends, who prayed for me or listened to me, or encouraged me. I can keep trying to help others, but I don’t think I’ll ever feel like it’s enough. And, some days, knowing there will be more dark times presses me down to depths I struggle with.

I am such a different person from who I once was. I’ve learned so much about how to handle some types of people and some types of situations. I am still myself though. I still struggle with wanting to fit in or to feel like I am enough on my own. I am finally hearing that my humor comes across as fucking rude to some people and that’s why I need to bite my tongue instead of thinking I’m funny.

I still have a lot of reasons to swallow my words with the blood that comes from biting my tongue, but my idea of humor has finally been added to the (long) list. At my core I just want to be heard, but I don’t think anyone is actually listening.

May the whirlwinds you reap be full of flowers rather than filled with angry lightning…