When did winter storms become news events of mass hysteria?
New York City and the eastern seaboard are apoplectic about the storm arriving, tomorrow.
Seriously, when I was growing up, a snowstorm was something to get excited about, but it didn’t paralyze us.
This was the kind of conversation we had about the weather in 1985:
You: There’s gonna be snow, tomorrow.
Me: Yep. I wonder if there’ll be school?
Today, we’re having conversations like this:
You: (panting and sweating) Have you gotten your emergency supply kit together?
Me: (running away and shouting back at you) I’m running to get the last crank-operated DVD player at Best Buy. I called and they’re holding it for me. Ain’t no way I’m living through this cataclysmic storm without watching the box set of the last season of LOST, which I haven’t even taken out of the cellophane because I’ve been such a Hulu addict since I got the box set. So, sorry. Gotta run. I’ve already got two kegs of mineral water and I’ve stocked up on toilet paper and cigarettes, just like FOX News and the Huffington Post told me to do.
People are freaking out. And by “people”, I mean…THE 24 NEWS CYCLE.
Yes, it’s gonna be a big storm. It’s a blizzard. Cool.
It’s not the end of the world. You know why?
It’s fucking January. Blizzards take place in January.
The real news is that the epic proportion of the storm might be thanks to climate change. (The “might”, herein, has nothing to do with climate change. OBVIOUSLY humankind is frying itself to death.) So the news shouldn’t be “yep. It’s gonna be a snowy weekend.” That’s January. That’s fun. That’s something about which to be mindful, not freak out.
But is the national media focusing on the real news…that we are committing mass suicide with our addition to oil?
They’re freaking out because of a blizzard. A COMPLETELY NORMAL WINTER WEATHER EVENT.
So what are the media doing? Selling shit. It’s as if CVS, Safeway, Duracell, Chevron, Firestone and Patagonia have all paid their lobbyists to coerce the national media into a buying frenzy.
“Hey, guys. We got a situation. It’s January. Sales are down since the holidays. Let’s sell some shit. Make this storm the storm of the century.”
Now. I’m no conspiracist. I’m a practicalist. I know our society is all about selling shit, in particular media outlets and entertainment journalists. They aren’t telling us what we need to know to conduct ourselves in civil harmony. Nope. They’re selling us shit.
So, this is my first installment in a series I’ll call, “Ignore the news. Just read my blog.”
Folks: I’ll tell you everything you need to know.
How do I get off on thinking I know it all? Because I have a blog. That’s what people do. When they think they know everything, they start blogs.
And then we get to endorse our know-it-allness by having a couple dozen likes on our facebook pages.
So. Having absolved myself of any liability for the crap I spew, I promise I’ll keep you informed of only the things you need to know:
- There’ll be snow this weekend. Enjoy it. It’s January.
- A bunch of people are really desperate to get out of war-torn communities in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan. We should help them out.
- Our political system is broken. Until we get money out of politics and stop allowing special interests and billionaires to control our politicians, we will have a stymied political elite in no way looking out for the good of the people they represent (meaning you and me.) (Or we just get that guy with the comb-over dominating the news. Because he’s a vaudevillian sideshow, which keeps you watching the news, which brings you to the commercial break, which…what?…sells you shit.)
- Don’t buy so much crap. You don’t need it.
- The Denver Broncos and a few other teams are playing for Super Bowl berths this Sunday. Should be exciting.
- There’s still an isolated contingent calling themselves ISIS that’s screwing things up in several countries. They aren’t representative of any religion. They’re extremists. We should be afraid of their actions. But we should also know that the choices we make as individuals and a country fuels their passion. So think about yourself as a global citizen and weigh the local, national and international consequences of your decisions.
You’re welcome. Now, turn off the television, snuggle under a blanket and read a good book. (I have several suggestions that can change everyone’s lives.) Enjoy the snow, and stop obsessing over the news.
Because they’re just selling you shit.