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Getting a jump on the Week

September 27, 2010

Right. It’s Sunday night, isn’t it? And most of us are busy getting ready for the week ahead. So I’m gonna get my Monday post done tonight. That’s a jump on things, right, not an avoidance of other things? Ah, perhaps it’s not. Still, it’s one less thing I’ll feel I should do at 5:30 tomorrow morning, and that will make my Monday flow better, maybe.

Mondays are my second longest day; Wednesdays are the longest. It’s lovely work I do, though, so even though the days are long, it’s spent doing a job I love. What more can a gal ask for than that? Ah well, the moon, I’m sure. And chocolate and coffee enough to get there and back!

Each morning for the last eighteen months, I’ve glanced at blogs the way I used to watch the news; I read the news online now, roundabout my blog visits. One of the places I’d usually hit on was Age of Autism. Have you noticed it’s slim pickings there now? Same old same old, with the same folks. It’s not worth the bother any more, not really. Nothing to see anymore. I won’t be going there tomorrow. What I feel when I read those comments is mostly pity. I think that their rhetoric is dangerous; it’s misguided, too. And when I see someone quote and link to whale.to, well, my eyes roll. There’s only so many conspiracy theories a body can read is for damn true. It ain’t worth the price of admission, and seeing someone be taken in by a site like that reveals a great deal.

I’m teaching my students how to recognize key words in ads, in posts online, on websites selling goods. It’s important work in the midst of teaching grammar, writing, and psychology and provides a handy way of demonstrating some fallacies. Certainly websites like AoA provide good fodder as well, but since the schtick doesn’t change, looking for additional examples isn’t really a priority. Besides, folks who read this blog, well, they either were reading Countering Age of Autism to get their mad on because they were AoAers or they were skeptics and science-based bloggers looking to see what woo I’d come across; they already got that it was woo or factually incorrect. How many of the same posts do either of these groups need to read, anyway? The AoAers can get their mad on elsewhere.

Ah, see, what I’m saying is, the blog wasn’t changing anybody’s opinion. Like Hillary Clinton, I guess I’m one of those women you either like or don’t, and I’m good with that. I can change hearts and minds in the classroom, or at least work at it.

Here, well, maybe I can help flesh out the goals that Kathleen and I have for the directory and Respect for Infinite Diversity: community building. Hah, see with that, we make a difference. We want to change the world, we do, even if it is one person at a time. We want to build a supportive, kumbaya community. Haven’t we been working on it since this started? Kickass kumbaya: we’ll take on the woo, right enough, and those who peddle it, but that isn’t enough. Showing support and encouragement for other families and individuals, both online and in the real world, well, maybe it isn’t a huge quantum leap or anything, but I can live with incremental change, even when it chafes. I know all about incremental change, tiny, slow, itty bitty change; change so small it barely registers until it finally smacks you in the face change!

More than two decades ago, my grandfather and I argued over changing the world. He argued vehemently that no one person could change the world. Hah, I come by my love of argument naturally (my dad and I jaw at each other all the time); I replied back: “Jesus.” And I wasn’t cursing, either. It was one of the last real conversations I had with my grandfather, too, unfortunately; well it was the least acrimonious, anyway. I’m not saying I’m christlike here; don’t mistake me. I’m not saying I’m gonna take the world by storm, either. I’m saying that here in my little neck of the woods, I’m going to get up each day and try to make it a little brighter, a little kinder, and the folks in it a little better at thinking, reading, and writing critically. I’m going to work hard to raise my children the best I can and to make the world a little more understanding of folks who don’t fit the pre-fabbed mold.

It’s what I got. If it ain’t enough, well, it’s still what I’ve got. Oh, and flowers. I got them, too.

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