“Sometimes I lay under the moon, I thank God I’m breathing.
Then I pray, don’t take me soon, `cuz I am here for reason.
Sometimes in my tears I drown,
but I never let it get me down.” ~ Matisyahu, “One Day”
I sat down to write today, as I do most days, and I remembered a dream I had a few nights ago. I had a dream that my children were grown and happy, and that my wife and I were operating a hot dog cart at Coney Island. I know, the hot dog part is weird right? Well, the important part of the dream is that our children were grown and happy. I worry about that from time to time. I worry for their futures in our ever changing world.
So I spent some time thinking about the dream, my children, our world and the experiences I have had, and here are a few things that I came up with:
We don’t put enough emphasis on happiness in our world. So much time and energy is spent on worrying about other countries, politics, celebrities, money and sports to name a few. What about just being happy? So, I turned off the TV, forgot about my email and electronic umbilicals, got my guitar and went outside. You know what I found after playing and watching the sun go down? Nothing changed. I mean, nothing fell apart, no empires crumbled and no one suffered as a result of my watching the sun go down while playing my old beat up guitar. It made me happy, and it left the world unscathed. And my general happiness translates to how I treat those around me.
My son walked in the room one night while I was watching the news. He said “This is the sad show Dad. Sad things happen on this show”. I fought to keep the tear that had formed in the corner of my eye from rolling down my cheek. He was right, every story that appeared in the first five minutes of the news was typically something sad. I was so careful to make sure I didn’t watch certain television shows while he was around, but I never thought about the news. The wisdom of this little person motivated me to change the channel.
We should spend more time on our kids and ensuring they have a childhood. Too many shows about sex and violence appear on every station. I enjoy some of these shows, but there is a time and place for them, and these themes are appearing in shows that are intended for children. There aren’t enough fun and educational shows like Sesame Street and Jeopardy. Why are my kids talking about things like pregnancy, murder and AIDS, when they should be asking me for new roller skates? They are growing up too fast and media outlets are marketing things to them that they are not ready for.
We need someone we can count on to run our country. I am making no political statement about anyone in our current administration. We voted, our votes were counted and that’s that. I just think we need someone we can count on, that will be who they say they are 100% of the time and provide us with the truth, even if it sucks to hear. We need a leader who spends less time and money on campaign ads and smear campaigns to embarrass their opponents, and more time on being human and doing the work. Someone who can put all of their major positions and policies on one sheet of paper (front and back is OK) and hold it up four years later as being exactly the same as when they started. We need a simple person with real values and a stake in the results of their leadership. One of us, with math skills. I would do it, but I need a suit that fits, all mine are now entirely too small.
We need God, now more than ever. So many people fight to keep anything that remotely represents religion out of politics and our schools. While that may be fine, we need to remember that our founding fathers are rolling in their graves at the thought of someone who is considered for a high ranking political office being grilled on whether or not their religious beliefs and pro-life stand would have any impact on their policies and decision making. God, I hope they will!
So that’s the short list. For some reason I am really craving a hot dog.