Have you tried to keep up with current events lately. It seems that just about the time you figure out what is happening and what direction everything is going - BAM- everything changes. Back, about several long-time-agos- we would get The Weekly Reader in elementary school. For those who were not that fortunate, it was a four page, newspaper type paper and had news that was hardly a couple of weeks old. As I remember, most of the kids in my class were very glad to get it as it was something so different from “a after e except when added to the sum of the difference.” You can see that I paid close attention to my lessons.
I remember Mrs. Ellis, my fifth and sixth grade teacher, who tried very hard to teach us semi-barbarians. It seems to me, using a memory that is decades old, she emphasized our Weekly Reader so we would learn about the broader world. As a very good teacher, she wanted us to know there was more to the world than the Glass Plant, Smelter and Main Street. Too many of us were content to never think beyond those parameters. Fortunately, my family traveled quite a bit when I was young so I got to see that the world was, indeed, a big place even if all I saw was Texas and the road to California.
Since then I have been to over 30 different countries, some for long term, and all 50 states. I even visited Russia which would have been impossible forty (or so) years ago. Yessir, the world has changed and, to repeat, it is difficult to keep up with everything and world events. Having said that, it is not OK to just give up and facetiously say, “What’s the use?” USA people are world famous for having no language skills and very little world knowledge skills. That is an amazing fact given that we also have among, if not THE best, knowledge base and access to knowledge. Our freedom guarantees that we can find any fact we need and we have the libraries which can insure this.
Very recently I was told about foreign countries which have a 4th of July celebration. This, to me as an “American” is flattering that a different country would find an excuse to have a celebration on our national day. It would seem they probably would not overtly have an “Independence Day” celebration but would name it something else. This is a fact I do not know but can only surmise from having traveled throughout most of western Europe. But it is faltering none the less even if it is just a mid-summer festival. (Yeah, right!)
With a new president in the White House and new people who have never done this before, new things are coming at us like a blizzard in January at the North Pole. Every day there are new things, new policies, new pronouncements to keep us spinning. Many times we haven’t had time to digest the current things when we are hit by a flurry of many other things. The typical American then just begins to ignore all the new policies and decides to watch some more commercials on TV. Probably they would watch a ball game instead of the news even though the news has a definite impact on their lives and they live miles away from any major league team.
As I have mentioned, I have been so slammed for the past three or four weeks that it has been difficult for me to stay abreast. Then, of the evening, I am so tired I try hard, but some things just pass on over me. Really, I enjoy being busy all day and I am just now finding time to do my bee work. After a cold and rainy spring I was not ready for bee swarms as I have been in the past. They came anyway.
That happens a lot. If one does not pay attention to what is being presented “out there,” one can certainly miss some very important things. It is my belief that if the new president got a law passed that all red haired people should be banned from driving, it would take some people months to find out. Paying attention to your world is now hard but one should also pay attention to the broader world. As you can tell, I find it mystifying that we Americans do not pay attention to the world. Oh well, what they do over there cannot affect me much. Just ask any Cuban.