Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about hope. And I’ve been thinking a lot about despair. Generally speaking, I try to maintain a posture of hope because I hear it’s good for my abs. Plus, I find I feel better when I am splashing around in hope rather than in despair.
But then I see and hear what others are doing around me, how they are talking, the extent to which they are fearing, and I wonder whether spending time in hope is naive and complacent. Am I an ostrich, my head jammed in the sand? Can someone living in Hope, USA simultaneously fight for social justice? Are conspiracy theorists wiser than I? Is core strength really all that important? And the big one: When the USA is not at all U, am I–as a writer and as a human–meant to plant myself in hope or in despair?
Worried that I have no answers to these questions, I gather my towel, my Otter Pops and my sunblock and meander over to the pit of despair. Sticking my toe in, there’s that immediate, delicious rush of We’re going to die! The world’s going to end! We must tell the others! Don’t forget to put the can opener in the emergency rations bin!
And it all feels so heart-racing and TRUE. [Read more…]