I need to have some regular blog feature.
My friend, Mary over at No Titles, is great with blog features. She's started a Wednesday feature called the Nonfictionist in which she interviews us writerly sorts. The latest installment features yours truly, though I'm preceded by Tom French, Pulitzer-winner author and all-around incredible guy; and Leslie F. Miller, whose awesome "mosaic of cakeness" book, Let Me Eat Cake, is due out April 14. My inclusion with these two makes me proud. Also, it makes me realize I've gotta get/keep crackin'.
Mary's also got a Thursday feature she usually does, entitled Things I Love Thursday, or TiLT. I think at some point she mentioned I and other bloggers ought to take up the feature on our own blogs, which I mentioned to a friend.
"But what would be the point?" he asked.
"What do you mean?"
"I mean," he said, "you kinda love, well, everything. Even things you don't love, you love."
"That's not true!"
"Two words: Battlefield Earth."
He's right, of course. I have the hardest time not loving something. I spent a good twenty minutes photographing a fly on a pile of garbage one day. I have an even harder time writing about it. Even bad-at-the-time experiences, like almost dying in childbirth, only occur to me as things to cover because they end so nicely. And then there's the sunsets and kiddy converstaions, and well... Yeah. Rose-colored glasses have permanently fused to my eyes. And I'm happy about that too. Maybe Things I Love would be a little superfluous.
The one time I don't love everything is online. Ignorant morons. Hateful morons. Morons among those I love, about whose moronic beliefs I was heretofore blissfully unaware. I mean, ugh. So that's how I'll balance it, at least today. If I love doing it (I love everything, but it IS online now, so you never know) maybe it can be a feature. Maybe, hmmm, Links I Can't Help Endlessly, Needfully Scorning. Or LICHENS. (Lichen, in case you didn't know, is a composite organism of fungus and a photosynthetic partner such as algae. They love each other, as my son says. And we love them. See how this sappiness works?)
So here are a few things I don't love, either ridiculous in link or in nature of what it covers.
* Needing to make one's point via lack of compassion, and/or blatant idiocy. No matter what my opinion on most issues, I'm more than willing to listen to the other side. But please. Condemning condoms as something that makes AIDS worse? Quashing the teaching of science in science class because your faith isn't strong enough to stand up to reality? Feeling vindicated, even HAPPY that several of one person's family members died in a tragic plane crash? You've lost me.
* The International Federation of Competitive Eating. Came upon it the other day. Pretty self-explanatory.
* The ridiculous fixation with Obama's use of a teleprompter. Do people have nothing to say on the substance of Obama's words? Do they think other presidents haven't used a teleprompters and speechwriters? (Actually, Obama is involved in writing a lot of his own speeches.) Was this better? Seriously, I don't see how this is news at all.
* Hate. It increases with things like fear and uncertainty and, gasp, differences, which most people seem to take as staples of continuing to live but which cause a sizeable minority to lash out with righteous contempt and sans brains. It's bad enough when the real nutjobs trot out their usual brand of hate, and bad enough that the recession and having a biracial president is bringing them out of the woodwork. But now I get the occasional e-mail from an acquaintance about stocking up on guns for one reason or another, always something to the effect of "It's time to fight back." It's an us-versus-them message. Sorry, e-mailers. No. I'm part of them. So are you. There is a middle ground between homogeny and all-out war.
* LOLcats. Still don't care about them.
* Perfectly intelligent people believing totally batshit-insane things. I just read something from someone (who really should know much better) about how the Illuminati secretly engineered the First, Second, and coming Third World Wars. Really? I mean, can't you at least be more creative in your conspiracy theories? And Boston Latin School's headmaster had to officially tell people that there are not, in fact, vampires at the school (leading to such irresistable headlines as "Headmaster sucks life out of rumors" and "Boston school drives stake through vampire talk"). What really gets me is that in both cases it's otherwise normal, reasonably intelligent people believing these things. What is it that makes otherwise sane people idiots? The company of other willing participants?
* Lazy faith. Don't have time to pray? Sign up to have a computer do it for you. Please. Whatever your beliefs, this is ridiculous.
That's all I've got for now. I'll get funnier and less preachy next time, hopefully. Until then, here's something you can't help but love, for good measure: