There Just Aren’t Words

How do you write about something when you just can’t find the words?  That is what I am struggling with at this moment.  I want to write about this, but I don’t know how.  So pardon me as I stumble along to even attempt to say what I feel right now.

See this camp:

We recently found out about this camp.  Two men who risked their lives and served our country are living in this camp. One is an Air Force veteran, the other a Navy veteran.  One is on crutches.  As I write these words in my warm home, it is 30 degrees outside.  I don’t know what the wind chill is.  And it’s going to get a lot colder before winter is over.

I realize that there are a lot of different reasons that people end up this way.  Some choose it.  Some can’t live by society’s rules.  Some have made big mistakes.  Some have addictions, mental illness, etc.  And some are just honest, good, hard-working people who end up with no where to go.  In our current economy the homeless that fit into that last category are growing.  And I choose to give people the benefit of the doubt, unless I see reason to do otherwise. I am disabled.  I once worked 65 hours a week or more and I am now no longer able to provide for myself.  I live by the grace of others in my life.  It is an issue that frustrates me to no end.  I don’t like it when people judge me incorrectly, so I won’t judge others.

These two men are purposely trying to avoid town and the crime-ridden shelter areas.  I discussed this issue amongst some friends and some of them couldn’t understand this mentality.  Personally I can.  I know if I were able, I’d much rather rough it in a tent than be around some of the things that go on in the worst parts of town.

We don’t want to pry or step on any toes.  So we haven’t prodded them for much information.  They seem to be handling their camp very well.  It is clean, well kept.  And what appears in the photo above to look like “stuff” piled on the sides of their tent, is actually what they are using to hold down the tarps that make their tent.  We have had some very severe wind recently, so this is a crucial part of there set up and smart.  They have a floor of wood pilots. Someone gave them two cots and some blankets, so they are off the ground.  They are using propane for heat. Kerosene for the little lanterns they have.  A wood campfire to cook on.

We don’t have much in the way of money these days, but we are going to help however we can.  We put together some things for them.  Baby wipes, canned food, paper towels, toilet paper, some empty unused Kroger bags so they’d have something to haul their nonburnable trash out in, some candy, and a big case of bottled water.  We weren’t really sure exactly what they needed most.

My husband took it to them and they were kind and very appreciative.  They seemed particularly grateful for the toilet paper.  Sometimes the smallest things, can mean so much.

I know there are a lot of homeless people in the world, and we can’t help everyone.  But we can do something.

When my husband asked them today what they needed and what else he could bring them, they didn’t ask for money, they asked for some meat for their fire.

The whole thing has really brought some things into clear perspective for me.  Recently I’ve been kind of bummed about how much smaller the pile of gifts under our tree was going to be this year.  We have never been the type to spoil our kids with tons of stuff.  But I do like for them to have a big Christmas and birthdays.  Even though (judging by what I’ve seen) I don’t think my definition of “big” is anywhere near a lot of people’s definition of big.  Still, things are leaner this year for sure.  But now all of that just seems so silly.

My kids are warm.

There is food in their bellies.

We are blessed.


Politics on Facebook

I am well aware of the fact that I haven’t discussed politics on this blog.  That is not an accident, that was a conscious choice.  Quite frankly I am sick of political conversations.  And before anyone goes jumping all over me, I think it is *extremely* important to be informed and vote.  Not just vote.  Educate yourself, then vote.

But I don’t want to discuss it here.  There are a million places online where people banter non-stop about politics.  The world does not need that from  Just. Not. Necessary.

(Please keep that in mind if you have a desire to post something nasty and political in the comments of this post… lol)

Now someday I might change my mind about that.  I doubt it, but you never know.  I suppose one of the good things about running your own blog is you can post whatever you want.

Well today, I am NOT talking politics.  I am talking about political posts on Facebook.  I’m not talking about a particular thing that is personally important to someone or their circle of friends.  I am referring to the endless drivel that people post and post and post and post.  What I thought would make me happy is if Facebook had a way that people could tag their status updates as political.  And if you then had the ability to block that person’s political status updates, and not their regular status updates, from your feed.  I realize it will likely never happen.  But I would love it all the same.  Because right now the options are to delete the annoying person totally, or block all of their status updates.  Neither of which I typically want to do.

Although I have done it, in regards to a pair of very extreme individuals… but to explain that situation would be a post all to itself.

Regardless of what your political beliefs are, if you are using Facebook, and have a wide variety of friends with different view points, you probably have at least one person on your list that annoys you with frequent political posts.  If that person is a family member or close friend, you may not want to block or delete them.  So they are just there, annoying you.  These are reasons that people leave Facebook (one of millions of reasons, but a reason all the same).

Have you ever thought to yourself, “Wow!  It would be a lot easier to like you, if you didn’t say such incredibly stupid/hateful/vile things?” I know to some that might sound harsh, but if you’ve been through it, you know what I mean.

And it’s not that I am close-minded or one-sided.  I think I take a very honest and individual approach to all people.  I am a registered Independent (not that that is anyone’s business), and I don’t feel the need to agree with people on political views.  I am perfectly happy to agree to disagree.  But the problem really comes into play (at least for me) when people feel the need to lie to push their agenda.  Lying is a HUGE pet peeve of mine.  HUGE.  I just have so little tolerance for it.  I can totally disagree with someone 100% and that is fine.  I can totally respect someone’s right to a difference of opinion.  But if they lie to push their agenda, then that just pisses me off.  Plain and simple.

Another thing that gets on my nerves is glaring hypocrisy.  I am sure we are all hypocrites in our own special way.  But recently I saw some holier-than-thou posts about how “we should be praying for our leaders not making posts criticizing or mocking them”.   Now what made this so amusing or annoying (maybe both) is who is posting this.  Because the individual, previously posted some very very very personally insulting things in regards to a particular political figure.  And every time I see this person’s holier-than-thou post, I have to bite my tongue (or fingers I suppose) to keep from replying with, “Yes, just like you did when you posted about ________?”

And one of these days I’ll probably be in just a pissy enough mood to do it.  Then there will of course be fallout.

Clearly what that person actually meant was, “I wish people would please stop insulting the people I LIKE.” Because they’ve already made it perfectly clear by their actions that it is perfectly ok in their mind to do so, as long as they hate the political figure in question.

Now I don’t really have much of an opinion on the post.  But I have an opinion on THAT person posting it, AFTER doing the exact opposite.

It’s stuff like that, that I would rather not see.

BUT… to argue the opposite side of this….
Is it a good idea to know the political thoughts of the people you are dealing with?  Because while I like to separate these things, Can you really?  Can you really separate some of these deeply held beliefs with the person?  I think it depends on the political issue at hand and the seriousness of the issue.

Also if they made available an option like this, then people would want other options.  I can hear it now, “Can I get a monotonous tag, for those people who tell you what they ate at every.single.meal. ? ”  LOL  Stuff like that.  So I see how it could be complicated and not work.  Plus you would be counting on the individual to be honest and tag their posts as political when they were, unless you added a “mark political” tag, so that people could tag it themselves.

What do you think?  Would you like to see a “political” tag on Facebook so that you had the option to get an individual’s political updates or not?  Or are we better off knowing the political beliefs of the people we deal with?  I am on the fence, how about you?

Perhaps the best option would be a “hide this post” option, without hiding the person’s entire feed.  So that at least when you read it once, you didn’t have to see it again.