Everything sublime is as difficult as it is rare. Baruch Spinoza

Monday, October 6, 2008

State of the State and State of Mind

I've had a heavy weight, like a brick, in the pit of my stomach for several months. In the past two weeks it has reached boulder size. It's dread. I wake in the morning with it and I go to sleep at night with it. It's become a constant companion to me. I can go about my daily life; I can laugh, I can eat and sleep, but I am always accompanied by it.

I read too much and I listen to Tom Hartman too much and I think too much. By the end of the day I can barely pull my shoulders up from around my boots. Then the root of bitterness starts to take hold. I want to turn the tables on the personal responsibility crowd. There are consequences to our actions and those consequences have come home to roost. Unfortunately everyone, or at least almost everyone, gets the grand opportunity to pay.

I'm so weary of false piety, of bigotry and hate, of greed and smugness. I'm old enough to remember a time when these things surely existed but they weren't part of the mainstream consciousness. I'm a dinosaur living in a time that has no place for me. The past three decades have left me behind and I watched with amazement turning to horror as it happened.

So now here we are, reaping the fruits of the seeds that were so easily planted in our society. The seeds a broad majority of our citizenry accepted without question because one or another of those seeds represented something that could be embraced by our own dark places or inner yearnings. Or simply our own stupidity.

I had a glimmer of hope and I want it back, but I can't find it. 


  1. Hope the glimmer comes back. Dread is a heavy boulder.
    Sometimes I think about turning on the TV and becoming like the others. But somehow it doesn't happen...

  2. Oh Sandra,

    Sorry that you are feeling down. Of course, the 'state of the state' is enough to get any one down. I hope that you can find some traces of hope from other sources. I must admit, I am also saddened by the seemingly unstoppable decline of human civilization in general. Financial crisis not withstanding, we have environmental and human rights atrocities everywhere. It really is a time to focus on the simple things, encouraging others and doing our best to add to the world in as many positive ways as possible. Making a small positive impact is better than making none at all or worse a negative one. I think that 'everyone' is hoping for a knight and shining armor to ride in and fix 'everything', however I think that the only thing to do at this point is to stay educated, stay hopeful, and try to contribute in any way possible to the betterment of society. Being a responsible parent, reducing waste, staying active in community affairs, lending a hand when possible are a few ways to keep perspective on the our role as 'average citizens' Of course the 'big guys' cashed in on American's desire for more than they have, but living on what you can afford can be a good goal for the averagae American. Even if it means riding a city bus or losing the giant house or not using AC in the summer. Of course some sacrafices will be greater than those mentioned but still we can do these things relatively painlessly. Hmmm... now I am rambling.
    Bye for now,

    Hope you feel better,


  3. I hope it comes back too. In a little under a month I'll know if there is any hope or just a black hole. When I heard the very wealthy are putting their money in treasuries and filling their vaults with bouillon I realized they know something. You, the saver, will find how smart you really are.

    A trail ride will lift my spirits!

  4. Hi Ashley,
    The problem and the underlaying cause of my particular dread are the 26 eating machines in my barn. They don't stop eating, it doesn't matter how bad the economy gets. Herd reduction isn't an option, as you can't even give a horse away at this time. I always have had an income from the horse business and now I don't. Although Mark makes a better-than-average income, solely supporting the horses, especially as the cost of caring for them has soared, is a financial burden.

    Everything you said is true and wise. As my friend Jean L. recently said though. I can't find a cheap way to keep horses.

    I'll come out of my funk, I'm just not used to this feeling. I don't like it.

  5. I am sure that 26 mouths to feed can make the coming financial crisis very real and very difficult. Like you said there is not much to do in cutting back in that department. I wonder if you could give lessons or
    something like that. Probably more trouble than it is worth with all the insurance etc... you would need. Oh well I sure hope things turn around for you and the rest of us! You sure do have a lovely lovely home and surrounding area. I hope you can find some creative ways to weather this difficult time.



  6. Lessons would be a way to generate income. Unfortunately I am not qualified to do that, nor do I have horses that would be good for that job. I am a qualified breeder and horse handler/manager, but I would never try to teach.
    I have always boarded a few outside horses, but that middle market seems to have dried up. My farm works best for those who want a nice place for their horses, but they keep them mainly as pets. The hard core riders or the people who want lots of amenities would not be happy here. The farm is designed around horse care and not people wants. I have been aggressive in seeking boarders, but no luck. My farrier tells me it's not just me.
    Even though my situation is a bit bleak, I know that we all have a stake in this. It is a domino effect and if one person starts to do poorly, many more start to feel it and it begins to snowball. I've cut back on everything, as has everyone I know who has a lot of horses, so all of the vendors/service providers I deal with have lost revenue. Therefore their vendors do less business and on it goes. Soon people who felt insulated don't feel so much so.

    The property is a nice setting and our largest asset.


I really appreciate the concept and sentiment behind awards, but I cannot participate in them anymore. I have too may and I have not got the time to devote to participating properly. To all who have honored me, I am grateful but I don't have seven more things to tell anyone about myself! And I'm a terrible passer-oner.