December 4, 2016 (Sunday)

by Yule Heibel on December 3, 2017

Sunday, sunny. Blindingly so in my sunny sunroom, to the point of needing to pull down both the blind at my desk as well as the bamboo matchstick blinds along the entire window wall. I need awnings. We don’t need to be as uncomfortable as we often are, and yet we choose discomfort often enough, almost actively, pathologically. Is it because much of what does feel comfortable is actually not good for us? Like too much food or alcohol, or too much laying about and not exercising? Too much consumption, period?

It all has to stay balanced somehow, and if it doesn’t, we get in trouble. Too much consumption of media (TV, internet surfing, e.g.) and nothing to counter it, to balance it, leads to … I don’t know. A badly functioning brain, I suppose. The counter has to be im-media-cy and / or production. Immediacy in the age of digital and virtual media might be “face time” and live entertainment, although the latter is still consumption. It could be book groups, dinner parties, walks. Movie discussions, that sort of thing. It could be production, creation: making art, practicing hobbies, writing, cooking, volunteering locally.

I didn’t mention that last Sunday, Nov.27 I believe it was, the city had its annual Santa Parade. D. and J. were Grand Marshalls. I hadn’t planned on seeing the parade, but A. and I were walking to Salem where we would meet W. at PEM’s shoe exhibit (what a lame show, totally stupid–and it could have been quite interesting, with better curation and focus), and we saw the parade, but just missed the head of it, which presumably was where the Grand Marshalls were riding in a car. (A car, always a car.) D. + J. are paragons of local plugged-in-ness and volunteering. The night before we saw them at Barrel House, and D. jokingly chided A. for not coming out to volunteer that morning on yet another Habitat for Humanity project in Lynn (or Hamilton – they have two in the works presently). D. is head of the local chapter. I admire what he does there, yet I can’t bring myself to join. I also don’t have the ambition to be the Grand Marshall of this city’s Santa Parade, ever, although I will say I found the parade very moving in its evocation of local spirit and community love.

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