published: Sunday, October 07, 2012
Living in a bubble
This week I've been in Oregon, attending yet another workshop. The weather, what I've seen of it, is gorgeous. Most of the time I have been indoors, sitting in lectures or hunched over my laptop, trying to apply what I've learned.
Because of the schedule, I've had very little time to contemplate what's going on in the outside world. This applies especially to politics, which I am certain has been running rampant as it has the entire election cycle.
I haven't had a radio on. There's a television in my room, but it has remained off. While I've gotten the occasional news alert in my email or phone, for the most part I've been off news websites. It's the middle of the week as I type this and I've only been on Facebook once. And while I know a debate will be taking place this week, chances are I will be away from any means of seeing it.
Another factor in my ignorance is that one of the rules in this workshop is that religion and politics are forbidden topics. We are here, the teachers told us, to focus on our writing, not argue philosophies. We've managed to more or less keep to this rule, which is remarkable considering we are a bunch of crazy writers from all kinds of backgrounds.
This whole week is of course not my normal schedule. I haven't had to cook, do laundry, or any of the other mundane things that make up my life. This is not all good, since I've also been doing without my several-times-a-week coffee from Brewster's and while I can find decent coffee here in Oregon it just isn't the same.
It's a weird and artificial thing, being so unaware of events moving in the world. I think there are those who live like this all the time, not caring for anything beyond their own small circle of influence. What is scary is that some of these people probably vote despite their ignorance. I'm not sure why.
But I can understand the allure of being out of the loop. My blood pressure has probably benefitted from being insulated from political news. I haven't had to yell at a radio or television in days. My eye rolls have been kept to a minimum.
So yeah, this break has had its cool side. I'm not sorry I'm taking it and focusing on my career for a little while. Sometimes it's take a break or lose what's left of your mind. It can be healthy.
But it doesn't mean I intend to spend the rest of my life like this. A break is one thing, the rest of my life is quite another.
Knowledge is important, especially this year, when we have important decisions to make. Once I'm home and back into what I laughingly call my "normal" routine I intend to dive right back into the political world, with all its frustrations and furies. I even intend to take a whack at the Florida amendments, which will test my intelligence and my patience.
But this week? This week I will concentrate on books and stories and the frustrations of driving new computer programs. Politics will stay safely at arm's length until I return. After all, it's only October. The political season isn't going anywhere.
If this election cycle is making you crazy, think about taking a few days and do what I've done. Turn off the radio and television. Refrain from online news sites. Let the newspaper pile up. You'll be surprised at how good you'll feel.
But do come back at some point. Do your homework at some point. We need informed voters more than ever. Be one of them.
Laura Ware is a Sebring resident. She can be contacted by e-mail at bookwormlady@
veterans beach (by: omar - 10/8/2012)
This entire police operation is questionable. The charges are only as good as the officer who conducts it. We live in a time that evidence is require for even a traffic violation. What kind of sting operation is this? No audio recording device. A man if found guilty by saying nothing. I have a hard time believing some one would thrust his body at the officer after he is arrested and the officer has identified himself. The place itself is a set up with no privacy to begin with. As far as screaming for help, well we have all herd stories where people don't react according to how we think they should. It all a mater of what goes threw your head at the moment. Do we require the only evidence to be "he said" . Lives are ruin, family may break apart, job lost or opportunities limited. This is much more than a traffic violation, so where is the evidence.
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