life in these times

It’s sort of hard to blog about anything right now in the face of Japan.

Anything I have to say seems somewhere between inadequate and absurd (and that’s the best case scenario). Even critiquing the media right now doesn’t seem worth the trouble, if I even had the perspective to do it effectively. Which I don’t. I’m deeply cognisant of how really irresponsible much of the nuclear coverage has been (some of it’s been excellent, but it’s largely been the exception), but I’m also the age I am; I’m ashamed of how much will-power it takes not to feel like I’m 8-years-old and my best friend has to go to therapy every other day because of the panic attacks she has because of all the nuclear war books they make us read in school.

Meanwhile, the rest of life continues. Whedonistas launched today, sold out on Amazon, and is back in stock now. Last night there was the reading at the Way Station, and despite thinking my head wasn’t in it (too many deadlines, too much news horror), it was tremendously fun and warm and good, and the thing I read seemed to amuse people and seemed to be meaningful and personal for one person in a way that was deeply gratifying and sort of intense. In a different week, I’d know how to write about that. This week, all I can say it was nice to see people.

Today I got that Sherlock thing done and out the door. Erica & I have been working on Dogboy & Justine; Kali and I are back on track with the novel; and I have another abstract I need to write and pitch and a friend I want to interview here about her film project. Oh yeah, and a couple of things to schedule – a podcast interview for one thing and a video interview for something else.

I’ve also spoken with Patty the last couple of days. She’s tremendous, and sometime in the next week or so, we should know when she’ll be home. So that, and the fact that she’s doing lots of neat stuff, is pretty exciting too. So is the approach of Passover, which means a sudden masses of gluten-free products I can’t get the rest of the year.

In a day or two I hope my head is screwed on enough to write neat stuff about neat stuff. Today the world seems a bit short on neat stuff, and I’m definitely a bit short on words.

Here are some ways to help Japan:

American Red Cross.
Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières.
Donation efforts and recommendations by members of the pagan community in the US.

We all have limited resources of time, money, and attention. Remember that Japan, and, in fact, all places affected by disasters at any time, tend to need help over the long term. Putting an alarm in your calendar to donate or boost the signal a few months from now is a valuable form of assistance.

6 thoughts on “life in these times”

  1. “I’m ashamed of how much will-power it takes not to feel like I’m 8-years-old and my best friend has to go to therapy every other day because of the panic attacks she has because of all the nuclear war books they make us read in school.”

    Don’t be, OMG don’t be. As a fellow child of the Cold War, I’m right there with you. The panic climbs right up my throat when I look at my children and think about how I have to keep them safe…

    1. While I am horrified at what was inflicted on your friend, I am not at all shocked either. I am just a bit younger than you, and as an adult now, wonder what was supposed to be the point of bringing such grim news to people who are a) young and already know how vulnerable they are, and b) eight years old, and really can’t run for office or draft foreign policy.

      It was the expectation that one was supposed to “do something”, but then be blown off b/c one is “just a kid”. And the Baby Boomers wonder why everyone born since the Beatles broke up thinks that they are annoying…

      Still, I read about the team of 50 technicians still working at the Fukushima plant, and am in awe of their courage and tenacity. Some of those people could very well have been working non-stop since this past Friday.

      1. Reading these comments I’m realizing how lucky I was that my parents sheltered me from the nuclear war panic/drama. I’m 37 and have no memories of parental warning or hypervigilance about the possibility of nuclear war, and until very recently assumed this was the norm – as you say, what’s the point of terrifying a child about something they can do nothing about?

        My inner Pollyanna wants to believe that the Japanese reactor will be contained quickly and cleanly but given how unprepared the entire country was for the aftershocks and tsunami, I’m very afraid this will turn into another Chernobyl 😦

  2. I was raised the same way. Plus my father had school friends his age that died of radiation poisoning from Hiroshima. It’s a pretty terrifying time.

    I really dislike the way a lot of pro-nuclear arguments are minimizing people’s fears about radiation. We need to know the facts, and not just operate on fear, but the fear needs to be acknowledged and not just dismissed as stupidity.

    I had a hard time deciding what to talk about and what not to talk about, but coming up with a separate place has really helped a lot. I’m also trying to minimize the effect on my kids.

  3. Thanks for the links for aiding Japan.

    Can I add a link? It’s a no kill shelter/TNR organization in Japan that is already trying to help pet owners in crisis. (Yes, I got the link from a Maru related thing.)
    Japan Cat Network

    And I grew up in the last bit of the Cold War too. For some reason the movie “War Games” keeps going through my head. The good thing about nuclear power is that a little bit goes a long way, and it doesn’t smog up like fossil fuels. The bad thing about it, well Chernobyl showed that. Along with Three Mile Island.

    If anyone dares, Environmental Graffiti has some pictures of Chernobyl.

    Just hoping and praying that the nuclear reactor in Japan can be shut down/ managed/ whatever. I’d hate for Japan to be having to deal with nuclear fallout after all this crap.

  4. It’s sort of hard to blog about anything right now in the face of Japan.

    You’re so not kidding. It’s overwhelming.

    I am also spending a lot of time being angry at people for spreading bad information, or letting their fear and worry drive them into stupidity. I’m really angry at people who are taking sort of a perverse joy in it, too. (See Also: there are some things I must not say on the open Internet.)

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