Never Ends.

I was going to write something passionate, about gun violence, gun control and the simply incomprehensible continuation of this morbid fascination with weapons in the United States. Not that the US is alone in this; I believe all of the elements which contribute to these recurring massacres exist elsewhere, and yet the US manages to provide the perfect conditions for it to thrive—conditions which it seems reluctant to change.

 But I’ve written about this before.

 Here.

 And here.

 And here.

 And here. 

I’m at the point where I can’t get angry about it anymore, and I deliberately remove myself from the internet when they happen, because I can’t get as sad about it as I used to, either. Why bother? I think. It changes nothing. Have I really become so cynical, as I advance in years? Or is this way of turning inward, of switching the world off, just a safety mechanism, just a means of survival so the grief of this world doesn’t cause me to cave in and collapse?

 I saw the familiar anger and distraught outrage emerging on the internet and over the radio, of course. However, this time, there’s a difference I’ve noticed about the reaction to Orlando, and it is that I am not alone in my resignation. There is a sense of despair which wasn’t there after previous shootings. There is the realisation that if Sandy Hook changed nothing, why would this one be different? Despite being the biggest mass shooting in the US to date, the fact that it occurred in an LGBT nightclub, a club attended by a group of people already vilified by so many, means that this will simply be yet another shooting.

 This time, here is a sad acceptance: This is the way it is. It’ll always be this way. This changes nothing.

 That is perhaps the biggest tragedy of all. That all these deaths will be simply added to the list of names of those already gunned down, and that they will precede those who will be gunned down in the future. There have been protests and anguished pleas, but this time, there are shrugged shoulders and broken sighs, and a despondent public who finally feel they are utterly powerless to stop this disease of hate.

 So well done, NRA. Congratulations, gun manufacturers. You spread the fear and the lies and the hatred, and we are broken. We still love, we still care, but we are tired, and sad, and nothing changes, and this cycle never ends.

You win.

But before you celebrate your victory, perhaps you’d like to wash all that blood off your hands?

Far From Home.

I went for a run today, and I ended up running further than I had planned. I had set the time on my phone and I had a feeling when I was about halfway through, that I was going to end my run much further from home than I had expected. The trouble was that I knew that I’d be tired and I wouldn’t be able to run all the way home–which was quite a way. But there wasn’t a choice, of course. How else was I going to get home?! I’d run as far as I could, and then I’d walk.

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The Week Links: Summer Edition.

Yes, I’ve been a little remiss with the links lately. Who knew summer holidays, swimming lessons, stationery shopping and work (plus the usual busy-ness) would keep me run off my feet these last several weeks? Well, everyone, probably, but it still always comes as a surprise to me that there are not enough hours in the day.

We’re expecting a warm day today–not as warm as Perth, but still summery–and I hope to be able to pick the last of the boysenberries and pretend to get organised for another school week (but no doubt I’ll end up working and/or reading a book and patting the cat. Possibly taking the dog for a walk. Maybe eating some cake…)

Enjoy the links!

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No.

Before First Offspring was born, I read.  A lot. All about babies. Having sat many an exam, I guess I treated the pregnancy and impending child-rearing like a test, and studied accordingly. I learnt about all different parenting techniques, and weighed up the pros and cons of routines, attachment, co-sleeping, vaccinations… really, everything. And one of the philosophies was that the word ‘no’ was an unhelpful word, to be avoided, if possible.

Telling your children ‘no’ sends a message of negativity, and is irritating to both you and them. And it can ‘breed resentment and plant seeds for future rebellion’ in your youngsters.

‘That sounds fair,’ thought yet-to-be-a-parent I. ‘I like the idea of being a positive parent. I’ll make an effort to say ‘no’ less. All that negativity is unhealthy, anyway.’

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No Place for People Like You.

Recently, changes to our migration act here in Australia meant that any non-Australian citizen who served a prison sentence for more than 12 months would be at risk of deportation at the end of their prison sentence. No doubt this was an attempt to rid our otherwise unsullied paradise of unsavoury foreign types who go around committing crimes and generally bringing down the tone of the place.

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So You go Back in Time to Kill Baby Hitler. Now What?

Recently, Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush was asked if, given the opportunity, he would travel back in time to kill Hitler as a baby. He answered that of course he would, although he admitted that he didn’t know if or how that would change the course of World War II and history.

The whole time-travel-to-kill-Hitler concept has become a bit of an internet meme, and because of this, seems to have a sense of the absurd about it. It’s as if you can’t say that you would do anything else, with the gift of time travel, without mentioning that first.

This has a couple of major problems, and it bothers me that people treat it with such disregard. Of course, I’m also aware of the absurdity of writing a blog post about the issues of time travel, but it highlights a number of greater concerns.

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Sowing the Seeds.

I’ve been out planting seeds this morning. I planted sunflowers a few weeks ago and was very happy to see them pop out of the ground only a few days later, and then they were all eaten by snails. Grr.

So I’ve planted more. I have a lot of seeds because I saved them from the sunflowers I planted last year, which means I can afford to lose a few to snails. But you can be sure that I’ll be buying coffee when I next go shopping (coffee is poisonous to snails and slugs). And as I was walking around with my watering can, giving the seeds a soak, my thoughts turned to the TPP. It’s not as big a leap as you might think–saving seeds is something which is common to both gardeners and farmers the world over, and with the trade agreement having been apparently rushed through, I’m concerned about how this will affect our agricultural sector, and the environment, as well as a host of other areas.

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The Week Links: in which our blogger has cause to celebrate!

Much cause, in fact. When I was in town the other day, I discovered that there is an Indian grocery store coming to one of the shopping centres. I cannot wait to investigate. Yum, Indian food! Spices and chapati and curry mixes and interesting sweets! I’ll be sure to let you know what I think when it opens.

The other thing which is exciting is that I’ve put up a website for my editing business, which I’m starting up. I’m expecting mostly local people to contact me, but of course, if you (or others you know) are interested, feel free to get in touch! That link up there on the right hand side—that’s me. I’ve ordered business cards. How ridiculously mature of me.

I also have another exciting announcement, but that deserves a post of its own. WATCH THIS SPACE.

Now, on with the links! You get an extra one this week because I missed last week. See how I’m looking out for you?

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The Week Links: in which our blogger takes the weekend off and has a good time.

Of course, my idea of ‘a good time’ is getting to hang out with a friend on Skype, finish all the washing up (even the pots and pans), play scrabble with the Handsome Sidekick., and eat dark chocolate and drink tea with my parents. So, as they say on the internet, ymmv.

Also, after what seems like WEEKS (literally only a few weeks, though), winter abated this weekend, and we had some very spring-y weather. It lifted my spirits considerably!

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All I Can Do.

The other week, I was asking Second Offspring about whether she remembered any children from her old school. She had only just turned five when we left, so I’m always interested to hear about what memories they have, and how they fade, what they hold onto.

“I remember Shannon,” she said. “Remember Shannon?”

I nodded.

“She wasn’t very nice,” Second Offspring added. “She was mean to me. She was kind of a bully.”

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