Yes, folks – the weather is so serious that it has necessitated a Topical Insert on the Archers! You can’t get more serious than that… seriously, though, I am trying to spare thoughts for those who are flooded out. I can’t begin to imagine how miserable that is, especially with little hope of improvement in the immediate future. It has also brought out some vitriol on social media about the pros and cons of climate change. Yes, there are still some deniers out there, although most people now accept that man-made climate change is a reality – or at the very least, a strong and serious probability. My own view is this: though we may never be able to be 100% certain as to the causes, while we are continuing to do things that could contribute to it – and logically ought to contribute to it, such as deforestation, burning fossil fuels etc – we ought to take it seriously and stop doing those things as far as possible. That’s a fairly moderate view, I’d have thought, but you wouldn’t believe the vitriol some people are capable of when ‘discussing’ the issue. So I’ve reached a decision. Lent’s coming up – and since I don’t overindulge in many things, I’ve decided to leave the chocolates and alcohol to take care of themselves; and for this year, I’m giving up Bad News.
Yep, that’s right: bad news. There’s far too much of it out there. It’s not only Facebook, it’s the mainstream media as well who focus on the negative whilst giving any positive news short shrift. I don’t know why this should be, but it gives us a very skewed version of the world. Every Third-World country is overrun by corruption and famine; every housing estate is sunk in crime and unemployment; every marriage is on the verge of break-up; every film-star is dysfunctional – and so on.
So for the duration of Lent, which starts on March 5th, I will be swearing off mainstream news, de-activating my Facebook account and using the radio only for music.
You have been warned!
Oh, and I almost forgot – yesterday my review of the short story collection ‘Ideas Above our Station’ was published by Thresholds;
Now back to the weather…