Friday, December 23, 2016



The holiday season has never been one of my best times.  Since I am more at home by myself, it is only in the presence of other people that the complications begin.  The quote, “Hell is other people”, by Jean-Paul Sartre, exemplifies the feelings that beset me at times such as this.  Having to deal with not only what you are supposed to be, but also what others think of what you are supposed to be is a burdensome weight.  This year, one of the realizations of a plausible solution has crept to the fore.  Who knows, had the recent Presidential election been different…

...and no, I don’t want to expound on politics.  I have been experimenting with not being informed, not minding what is being considered “newsworthy”.  My focus is on getting myself prepared for the future, and being overly concerned about the world outside of my orbit is not a part of being focused.  For the next four years, at least, I will be practicing “disengagement” from broad, and political, newsworthy stories.

It has been a transition.  You are talking about a healthy habit that has been over 40 years in the making.  From NPR to Beth’s Facebook feed, any information that does not have the most direct and immediate impact in my life has, at least for me, little use.  So it will be interesting to walk around deliberately uninformed, as the notion that it is a choice to be ignorant is different from not even being interested in current events, is something that I have always thought of as criminal, the breaking of a social contract between myself and society.

School is been going well.  American History and Critical Reasoning, two subjects that I rather enjoy, are my classes this term.  The Native American Trump-tastic student doesn’t seem to be as unbalanced as he first came across, and I even shared my book with him.  While it could have been a show of character for me, it also doubled as a “keep your friends close, but potential mass murders who need to be kept closer” kind of moment for me.  American History has been tame, focus on America after Columbus and such.  I await the discussions on slavery and the Civil War, but what this class has really done has re-established my belief in the construction of the top-down social system that exists across all of society and culture.

Finally, I am going to focus in on some of the things that I believe it takes in becoming fit.  Not only will I suggest exercises and perhaps a workout that achieves goals and physical changes, but I also hope to discuss the true nuts and bolts to fitness, the mental and chemical influences that help to shape our shapes!  Happy holidays!!


Ken Riches said...

Looking forward to seeing you in April, we can talk about how things are going politically, fitness wise, and such. I would like to come in for another workout if that will be OK. Hope you have a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year my friend...

Mary Degli Esposti said...

I have been listening to NPR when my issues allow it, but I am pretty disengaged with many things...I see it as a survival tactic, but must admit some of it is involuntary as well.

School has been great for you, but in many ways YOU have been great for you. Congrats, Mark.

Beth said...

I have stopped reading my political feed and have stopped watching the news. I still read and share a political story here and there but I mostly just read the New York Times newsletter I get every morning.

It's a freakin' zoo. I can't bear to read about his nastiness and his childishness. He is an embarrassment.

I'm okay with checking out. This doesn't mean I'm not going to be involved. But parsing every little bit of news that comes out isn't going to help with anything.