i’m scared

You know what? I’m scared. I’m scared of what is happening in the world right now because it’s crazy and reminding me of every dystopian novel I have ever read and those stories never turned out so well for the people in it.

Almost every day there is a mass shooting in the US or a terrorist attack somewhere else. I’ve lost track of them by now and even if it is the wrong thing, I’m not even actively following those events anymore because my heart can’t deal with them. It’s a tactic I’ve learned to apply early in life; self preservation.

It’s not good though since it means going numb.

I’m scared that after 70 years or peace in the european union the right wing nut jobs are again gaining strength. Is 70 years enough time to forget about the outcome of WW2? How can people so easily forget that? The path we’re currently on seems rather destructive and it isn’t just one nation. It’s everywhere.

All over Europe extremist political groups are gaining followers. Erdogan in Turkey is letting his dictatorship shine through his pseudo democracy more and more every day. Then there’s Syria. Israel. Africa. And finally, the current election cycle in the US. I still have hope that Trump won’t get anywhere near the White House but until November we won’t know for sure and there is still the possibility that despite me hoping he will suddenly and miraculously disintegrate into thin air, he could theoretically become the next President of the United States.

Never in my albeit rather short life on this earth have I felt more like the world is coming apart at its seams. Not even in the 9/11 aftermath.

And I feel helpless. (Cue to me singing Helpless cause I’m #Hamiltrash.) I don’t really know what to do with this fear. Where will this end? And how?

Everything seems to get more radical. More extreme. There’s no middle ground anymore.

And I don’t know what to do with this. Nobody seems to know.

Which has me scared.

‘An Epilogue to Innocence’ by Tim Baughman jr.

‘An Epilogue of Innocence’ is a collection of short stories. I received this as an ARC through Tim directly, as I am a long time follower of his blog where he originally published some of the stories.

Source: Goodreads

It took me a while to write this review because of real-life troubles as well as having mixed feelings about the collection. There are some stories I enjoyed, mainly Soma which I already knew and liked before it was put into this book. I do think Tim’s style works really well for this story. And there is a short drabble about a first day, the name of the story eludes me right now, but it made me smile.

With most of the other stories I struggled, mainly with style because it was a lot of tell and I understand that short stories can follow somewhat different rules than say, a novel. Still, the stories could have used more time to breathe, more space in general and you get that by actually showing what is happening instead of explaining what is happening. I know from my own experience, that is difficult to do but it can and should be done.

Another thing I struggled with was the queer sociopathic character in the biggest story. I knew what was coming because it was one of Tim’s previously published stories on his blog and I really did like the beginning but not the end of it. It just didn’t sit right with me.

I finished this story collection about a week ago and still don’t really know where to put it. But hey, the cover is really nice. I did that very much.

school vs. family

I am SO angry right now which is why I have to blog about it before I can go to sleep because I know it would just keep me up way past my bedtime if I don’t get this out. So, I watched a video on Facebook suggesting that schools need to get (back?) into the teaching of basic life skills such as cooking, financial planning, changing tires etc. because kids these days don’t know how to do them.

This makes me angry because basic life skills are not for schools to teach; it’s what parents are for. Guess what? I had a mother and grandmother who taught me how to handle money and financials, how to cook, bake, clean. I learned how to use power tools more or less by myself and I had a friend show me how to change tires though I also could have looked that up on the internet. There’s a goddamn Youtube video or blog post or internet forum for EVERYTHING!

Schools teach you how to write, how to do math, speak a foreign language, show you what the universe is made of, teach you how to structure a point-counterpoint argument and while it seems senseless to being able to analyse a poem in three different languages (and I claimed this as a pupil as well) it does have its merits. At 18 I couldn’t imagine I would spend a lot of time writing on the internet. And while my understanding about plant cells isn’t something I can use in my daily life, just knowing that I know it makes me happy. Plus, you never know when you might need the knowledge. Also, also the things we learn in school once we’ve upgraded from learning how to write and multiply 5×3, it’s about methods, logical thinking and certain structures that are universal.

Maybe I’m wired differently though. Schools should teach you to aim higher and inspire you. I understand they fail a lot of people at that because of untrained teachers and the lot but how can they succeed at it when we drop basic life skills onto their plates as well as everything else? Aren’t there enough things kids need to learn in school these days? Is it really so ludicrous to suggest parents teach their kids how to make their beds, boil water, clean their clothes and be decent human beings? I really don’t think so.

And maybe, if the conservatives wouldn’t spend so much time using their family values argument to discriminate against LGBTQ+ people and foreigners, and instead would promote actual family values, young people would be better prepared for their lives. Just a thought though. We all could benefit from a promotion of those kind of values instead of spreading hate and bigotry.

Do I feel better now that I wrote this all down? I do! I do! I do! I do! I do!