When Do You Stop Clapping?

The West Coast is on fire. The Southeast is underwater, and it’s only the start of hurricane season. Nazis are feeling their oats, and the jackass we elected President is having a pissing match with a nuclear power when he’s not announcing his intention to deport a million people who are better citizens than he or I have ever been. Daily life is surreal, like we’re clapping and clapping, trying to believe hard enough to bring Tinkerbell back to life. Tinkerbell being a world where it makes sense to do things like buy houses and have children and plan for your retirement.

When do you stop clapping? When do you stop thinking the world will go on as it has, and start planning for contingencies that were science fiction two years ago? What does that even mean? Buy a gun? A bunch of canned food and bottled water? Order an apocalypse kit from the Mormons on Amazon and stop at every gas station you pass so when the moment comes you’ll have a full tank? Where will you even go?

I’m sitting here with a to-do list a mile long. I’ve got businesses to grow, a novel to finish, people who expect me to make things for them and do things to make their homes nicer. But I look outside, and I can’t see the fucking sky for the smoke, and people in the place I grew up (Florida) are bracing for a hurricane that’ll ravage the whole state whichever of the approximately five thousand possible paths it might take heading inland it ultimately does.

I’m sitting here paralyzed, because if Tinkerbell’s dead then I’m crazy to worry over what things make a normal life. If she isn’t I need to clap harder than ever, knowing it might not be enough. We all do, together.

I honestly don’t know what’s to come. Whatever it turns out to be will be hard, for all of us. It already is.

I don’t have much in the way of encouraging words today. So I’ll borrow some from people much wiser than I.

“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’”
-Fred Rogers

“Be the change you want to see in the world.”

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