May 25, 2015. Rise Up and Grab Your Towel

It was a Terry Pratchett sort of day. Tristen’s 18th birthday, and no plan in place lead us to leisurely wanderings, and eventually Barnes and Noble. Tristen chose a book, a grouping of shorts by Sir Terry that we hadn’t read before. “It’s sad.” he said. “LIke super depressing.” But it was, in the end, what he wanted. I carried it down the strip mall without a bag, and at the Kitchen Store, a young man stopped me. “Pratchett is my favorite author.” he said. It was a challenge. I nodded. “Ours too.” I said, and we parted company with a million things unsaid.
A few nights ago I began re-reading Night Watch, which is a Sam Vimes novel about the police of Ankh-Mopork.. and also, I’d forgotten, about riots. The novel ends in death and funerals, and with a chosen few who wear lilac sprigs in remembrance. That novel tradition has carried over in to the ‘real’ world, where Disc Worldians and Pratchett fans wear lilac on the 25th of May.. tomorrow.. Memorial Day here.. not only to remember the police and armed forces who have fallen, but in support of those suffering from Alzheimer’s, which just this year took Sir Terry from us for good. So if you see someone wearing lilac tomorrow, looking wistful and a little weepy, Smile. Tell them The Turtle Moves. Mention Binky, or Quoth, or just nod and give your best salute.
Rise up!

Age and Equity

On the way home tonight I heard an article about increasing longevity. A researcher traveled to several communities that are notoriously long lived, and looked for common denominators in their lifestyles. He found several commonalities. One was a diet heavy on beans (told you so!) and another was that in all of these cultures, the desired age.. the age with the most cachet, the most equity.. that age was, in all of these cultures: OLDER. Or, AS OLD AS YOU CAN GET. Your life is an investment in those cultures. The longer you live, the more you are worth.
In America, the age with the most equity is about 25. In America, your equity, your value to society (or at least advertisers) begins to decline after you turn 26.
huh.
Then I scrolled past an article here, titled something like “Five jokes that went over your head as a kid”. It was about Cartoons, and one example was a still of Johnny Bravo oggling a centerfold, hand in his lap below eye level. Most of the rest of the jokes were sexual too.
Let me tell you something. Those jokes? Didn’t go over nearly as many heads as they did sink in to, and normalize a behavior for kids watching it that perhaps they weren’t ready for.
It occurred to me that that’s the other end of the longevity spectrum. Normalizing behaviors through video games, pop culture, media, education.. that we candify and sugar coat to make them ‘kid-friendly’ when, in fact we’re training children that they will have the most value to us not now, but when they’re 24.
I need to think about this more, but I wanted to get my notes out in public and give them an airing. Positive themed comments (and you can disagree, just frickin’ be nice about it.) welcome.

Easter

On Easter Morning…

Sawyer has hidden his easter eggs somewhere in the house. HE CAN NOT REMEMBER WHERE. There’s ten hardboiled eggs… somewhere … in this house.
Last. Easter. Ever.

On Easter Evening…

The 10 missing easter eggs have been found. They are inside the dog.