Personal Stories

Musings for May 6, 2021: Where I’ve Been

I haven’t been around much for about two weeks now. For the bulk of it, I took a 10-day road trip across the country to the oldest geocache in the world. Along the way, I stopped at some other interesting roadside attractions. I’m hoping to get posts up about this adventure soon.

When I arrived home on Sunday, I had some work to catch up on as well as some family things. Truth is, I just didn’t feel much like writing and I didn’t want to do any re-posts without first talking about where I had been.

Driving across the country alone gave me a lot of time for introspection, both about myself and this blog. I listened to Bruce Springsteen quite a bit. I’ve always been a huge fan of his, and now as we’re both getting older I think he really has a lot of things to say about the world that I respect and enjoy listening to. The first thing I listened to was his podcast with former President Barack Obama. They talked about a wide variety of topics. I had listened to some of those episodes already, but re-listening, as I drove across the country, gave it new emphasis. I also listened to his From My House to Yours segments that aired on E-Street Radio on Sirius XM. His music selections were really a great narrative to the last year; even some genres I don’t normally listen to (like Rap) were among his selections and fit while driving across the prairie.

I want to try to write more about current events or events that spike my interest. Like Springsteen, I do believe there is room to come together; to “find the middle” as it were. There are certain positions I feel are non-negotiable; human rights, for one. There should be no excuse for any kind of discrimination against another person for the color of their skin, where they were born, their sex, their sexual identity, their religion, or any superficial reason people seem to come up with. That is non-negotiable to me.

Is anything I write going to change anyone’s mind? Probably not. That doesn’t relieve me of my obligation to society. While listening to Springsteen and thinking about the people who say they “like his music but he should stay out of politics” I kept coming up with the term “political capital” in my mind. He has a certain amount of capital due to his fame and with that comes something of an obligation to speak out. He’s always worked hard or the working man and typically had local food banks collecting donations at his concerts all the way back to when I remember seeing him in 1981 (he typically gave them a check as well).

That “capital” – that you’ve somehow benefitted from our society’s structure – is something many of us take for granted. We shouldn’t, and we should fight for everyone in our society to have the same opportunities. We’re not all Bruce Springsteen. We can’t write songs that tell stories and convey deep meaning like he does. However, economically I can say while I have had challenges throughout my life, there was never a time where I had to worry about where my next meal was coming from or if I was going to be evicted.

Going forward I’m going to try to post one media piece every day and one topical one. I’m sure there will be plenty of days I just don’t feel like writing or can’t get a handle on the topic the way I want to. I’m going to try, though. That’s all any of us can do.

9 replies »

  1. “Is anything I write going to change anyone’s mind? Probably not. That doesn’t relieve me of my obligation to society.”
    1. You never know, and
    2. We bear witness to the possibilities of a better society even as we call out what needs to change.

    Thank you so much, Patti, for being you.

  2. Yes, we need to put out a more inclusive POV to counter the negative and often hostile world view that has been seen more often lately in our country. I look forward to your posts. Mingo is on my list. We are planning a road trip to Gilby, ND this August and might just swing through KS to get that one too! Looks like you earned your “Blue Switch” souvenir….

    • Both sides are at fault here and I’ll discuss issues I have with people I normally agree with about a few things. There can be a line in the sand over human rights, but we have to work together. Progress is slow….

  3. Good thinking Patti. I am looking forward to your posts. you must have great discipline to be able to write every day. I think about it a lot and I plan lots of posts in my head, but to actually get down to the business of writing — well, that’s another story. maybe you will inspire me.

    • Thanks – I don’t have the discipline to write every day. When I’m out I get some great ideas, but when I get home they seem to fall by the wayside. I am going to make more of an effort, though.