Friday, October 24, 2008
(The Angels Want to Wear) My Red Shoes*
Sometimes I feel so old. I am getting up there, so I guess I'm entitled to the creaky knees, etc. Part of feeling old is a particular middle aged incredulity about the way people conduct themselves. I know, from having been around the block a few dozen times, that people don't have to be so inconsiderate.
I'm thinking about kooks like Rush Limbaugh and Bill O'Reilly (American radio talk show "personalities" for those who don't know) who use their on-air time to lie about anything they want to. Why is that OK? Why are they paid millions of dollars to do so? Naturally the Republican candidates for president and especially vice president come to mind. Why is it OK to commit libel during a presidential campaign? I don't get it.
Earlier in the week I drove an hour to sit with a Tibetan Buddhist who is allegedly a great teacher. Tara Brach (who is a great meditation teacher) said, before he began speaking, that her work with him had had a profound effect on her spiritual path. But all I saw was an egomaniac telling rambling stories about his own life that he obviously felt were tremendously amusing. We in the audience were trying to be good sports, but it was hot in there, and his stories were truly boring. At times he had to say "joke" so that we understood we were supposed to laugh. Worst of all, I didn't learn a thing from him. The title of his talk was "The Great Perfection." Huh?
Maybe this has nothing to do with getting older. Maybe I just had a lackluster week of encounters with people I believe should open their eyes and look at themselves in the mirror. I'm certainly not 'the great perfection' either, for heaven's sake! Perhaps it was just an overload of inconsideration that got me so cranky.
Whatever the reason, I'm happy this week is over. Onwards and upwards to the weekend!
*Thanks, Elvis Costello, for that line, "I used to be disgusted, now I try to be amused ..." I'll keep trying!