Monday, March 18, 2013

"R.I.P. to a Trogen Wareor"

(I have to make up a name, uh, let's say Mistyanna.)

I looked at Facebook today, which I have been trying to do less frequently than I used to, and it was fine.  I was led to a couple of great blog posts by some really great guys; I saw a couple of nice pictures and a couple funny memes; I learned some Irish, which is lovely to look at, and there was this, twice, up there on the "ticker" I think they call it:

 "Mistyanna likes her own photo."

I laughed aloud and, my heart cracked a little.

I'd like to tell you that my heart hurt for her, Mistyanna, but it didn't.  I'd like to tell you that my heart hurt because she seems so lost and sad swimming in the sea of self, but it doesn't.


My heart hurt because I don't know how to steer my boys away from the path of narcissism and selfishness that social media, the Internet, video-gaming, texting - hell, even blogging - make so damned appealing.  It's is all so immediate and vivid and and self-serving.

Lord knows that by many people's standards we are positively medieval in our use of technology around here.  We have a dying laptop and a noisy Dell tower, mired in cords and codes and all that stuff I don't understand.  But that doesn't change the content of the cyber-world around us.  Facebook's self-aggrandizing nature, Pintrest's impossible perfection, blog after blog of look-at me praddle (my own included) make me sometimes wish I'd never seen any of it.

There are times that I wonder what exactly I, we perhaps, did before there was this thing called the Internet.  Personally, I read more, I played more music, I tried things, I thought, and, I had friends, real friends.

And, I was lonely.

Today, I can troll around the innerwebs, chat with an acquaintance, find an old friend, catch up with family and friends, listen to new music, read blogs and...

I'm still lonely.

Social media is neither good nor bad I guess.  It passes the time, but it doesn't fill the void.

(I am worried about this post, it's not doing what I want it to do.)

The void that social media doesn't fill is shaped differently in all of us.  For me, the void that I long to fill is my God-shaped hole, my spirituality.  It is stupid to look around here for inspiration.  So often all I see are people liking their own photos, people looking for attention.  I see snarky status updates; I see mean-spirited humor; I see people posting picture after picture of themselves and theirs, to no discernible end; I see irrational rants about this policy and that dated ideology; I see...

(Dammit!  This is not going well...)

Listen, I want this post to show how dangerous all this crap on the Internet can be, how mindless and isolated it can make us, how shallow and soulless it all seems, but... it's not always.

I once guest posted on a blog called Daddy Knows Less, in fact I think it's the only guest post I've ever done.  I just read it again, here, and it pretty much negates everything I have said up to this point.

(Some posts are just not meant to be.)

I follow his blog and a few others, some I have listed over there on your right, "Some Better Bloggers" I call them.

Daddy Knows Less' post today impacted me right in the spot I just said above that the Internet could not affect.  I am wrong a lot.

It is called An Instrument of Peace and you should read it.  Right now.  I'll go get a cup of coffee and we'll meet back here.

You came back, thanks.  That was nice of you...  It's a good post, isn't it?  He has such an easy style and such a palpable love for family and life.

For probably the last decade of my career as a waiter, I carried prayers in my waiter book and the one I most frequently considered was The Prayer of St. Francis.  If one phrase could help me, calm me down, open my heart, free my soul, it was, "Make me an instrument of your peace."  I'd forgotten that.  Oh, I've seen the prayer since then, and I think of it sometimes but, I'd forgotten that I carried it with me, literally and figuratively, for all those years.

I have been recently struggling with a difficult decision I have to make.  The details aren't important, but the words that DKL wrote are a big help to me.  The reminder of that simple, pure prayer was exactly what I needed today.  I want to thank him but I don't know how.

(Well, if ever a post didn't work out it was this one.)

(Must attempt redirection from the pointless ramblings above.)

Hey, how about a couple of cute pictures and a snarky comment or two?

Zack made this one.  The math is fine.  I can't tell if those are birds there, and if they are, are those the bird's guts there?  Is it a page from an anatomy of birds book?  What does the price refer to, perhaps it is two birds?  I am not sure I want to know what this is about.

Now here on Nick's I did get a little information.  In fact I got too much information.  It's dead dude, sort of mummified.  Yes, that is his ribcage and those are his bones showing through on his arms.  He seems to have some sort of mask or headcovering over his head.  His eyes are utterly devoid of feeling.  It says: "R.I.P. to a trogen wareor."  A Trojan Warrior - of the Bunny Order, judging from his head gear...

Sometimes the stuff they make really creeps me out.

From Marci's "things you don't expect to hear from the backseat..."

Zack:  "This is what you get when you take the 'dodge' out of dodgeball."

(Cue ball thrown *hard* at Daddy's gut.)

Dodgeball is not a two man sport there... ouch.

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