The Jazzed-Up-Zombie Drug and Its Side Affects

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Everybody I know is hissing and spitting, carping and griping at one another.

I got out of the dentist’s office today (broke a tooth) and found a snotty text from a family member on my iPhone. Instead of shrugging it off, or, as the Scriptures suggest, giving a soft answer, I called them up and was snotty back.

It’s as if every person I’ve talked to in the past couple of days has been like an angry wasp looking for someone to sting, and now I’m catching the angry wasp flu myself.

Is it something in the drinking water? Or is it coming from our televisions?

Are we suffering from a societal case of the over-stimulated heebie-jeebies?

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We have had to put up with a lot of vicarious trauma in the past year, ranging from wealthy, gun-toting post-adolescent males who murder everybody they encounter, to killer weather and a President and Supreme Court who have decided that overturning the family structure on which our entire civilization is built is the neatest idea since Tom Sawyer convinced Becky Thatcher to go spelunking. The fact that the rest of us can see that these folks have no better road map than Tom did doesn’t seem to matter.

And, of course, there’s the economy. The stinking, stewing, going nowhere economy. Our “leaders” lie about the economy, just like they do most else. They’ve cooked the books on the statistics until those statistics are disconnected from the reality of the American people, and — dare I say it? — the economy they are supposed to report. Everyone ignores and will not admit that the reason we don’t have any jobs is that we exported them, along with our industrial base. A country that can’t manufacture it’s own goods is a vulnerable nation.

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Then, there’s the little matter of the government putting all of us — and I mean all of us — under surveillance to keep us “safe.” And our missing-in-action press can’t be bothered to ask who’s going to keep us “safe” from the government. Meanwhile the folks in Washington are scratching around, trying to find another war to get us into. It’s as if they fear peace; which, I think, they perhaps do. After all, where are the profits for the corporate war machine going to come from if we run out of wars?

Then, there’s Zimmerman and other nonsensical and utterly trashy means of controlling the populace. Watching cable news doesn’t inform you. It shuts your brain off by focusing it on trash, kind of like giving you a drug of some sort that puts you to sleep and makes you crazy, both at once — a jazzed-up-zombie drug that’s mainlined into our brains via the endless blab and no news on the cable news.

To top if off, the Pope resigned.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I am all in for Pope Francis.

But Popes aren’t supposed to resign. Popes are supposed to hang in there until the Lord calls them home. But the Pope resigned.

Is this why everybody is in such a lovely, lovely mood?

Have we reached a sort of midsummer trough because we are momentarily between disasters, and we’re sliding into disaster withdrawal? Has the media succeeded in hypering its audience into such a frenzy that even a few days of ordinary time have become unbearable?

I dunno.

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All I know is that everybody I encounter is double grouchy and seems to have a chip on their shoulders. They are weird and ticked off and they don’t know why. But as soon as some little something comes along that focuses their weird tickedoffness, they ram the snotty little comment maker we all have in the reptilian basements of our brains into gear and they are off.

Unfortunately for me, I hang with people who tend to be extraordinarily gifted at the verbal arts. That means that when the snotty commenter takes them over, they can come out with some really poisonous stuff. You can bleed for days from one of their barbs.

But even for them, with all their skills and extraordinary ability to make things seem to add up even when they don’t, the story doesn’t track. The rage outpaces the annoyance, and the arguments tend to negate the reasons they give for why they’re angry.

There’s something going on here. I don’t know what it is.

But I’m tired of it.

  • TheodoreSeeber

    In my defense, the chip hasn’t left my shoulder since I was 6 and punished for repeating the word “Shutup” when somebody else said it first.

    Since then, the whole bloody world has seemed out of whack to me.

    I guess that’s when I realized I was different. Was two more decades before they told me how I was different.

  • FW Ken

    Well, it’s August. In Texas, we blame being crabby on the heat. It’s as good an excuse as any.

  • http://mywordwall.wordpress.com/ Imelda

    Must be the heat. :-) The hot, humid, discomforting weather makes everyone prone to irritability/aggressive behavior for the smallest reason. The bottled up emotions from all of the issues you enumerated escape through the cracks like those things inside Pandora’s Box.

  • http://ashesfromburntroses.blogspot.com/ Manny

    Oh I find it’severy year is like this. The news media wants us to feel this way. That’s how they prioritize what’s in our face. It’s stimulation, provocation, and just plain zap the adrenalin. And that puts us all at each other’s throats. But let’s not forget they also entertain us. Here in New York we’ve now had a good daily dose of Anthony Weiner. Now there’s a name for you that will quickly slap a face palm to one’s head: “Anthony Weiner.” It kind of makes all the poison go down smoother. :)

  • Fabio Paolo Barbieri

    Yesterday my computer went berserk on me just as I was struggling with a very urgent and difficult job for an important client. Client and I were both hung out to roast for an hour as my computer sprang surprise after surprise on us, till I declared I could not do the job and abjectly apologized. I still may have lost a major customer. Then in the afternoon I went grocery shopping – and the local supermarket’s freezers had all conked out, with half the produce unavailable. Then outside I saw a man’s little Vespa scooter just die on him for no reason.

    It’s the weather, all right. London is not meant to take weeks of 34 and more centigrades. And I am told that in Italy and Spain right now it’s pushing forty, which makes me glad I’m here.

  • Fabio Paolo Barbieri

    Having said that, you may want to read this excellent Matt Towery post: http://townhall.com/columnists/matttowery/2013/07/25/feel-like-youve-made-progress-in-the-past-10-years-think-again-n1648411 , Towery is one of the few people who pointed out that Americans were being squeezed to death by oversold housing mortgages, two years before the bubble burst, and since then I have paid attention to what he says.

  • CSmith

    Prayer by John Greenleaf Whittier

    Dear Lord and Father of mankind,
    Forgive our foolish ways!
    Reclothe us in our rightful mind,
    In purer lives Thy service find,
    In deeper reverence, praise.

    Drop Thy still dews of quietness,
    Till all our strivings cease;
    Take from our souls the strain and stress,
    And let our ordered life confess
    The beauty of Thy peace

  • Bill S

    One of the things that everyone seems to fret about is the government’s monitoring our communications in an attempt to identify potential terrorist plots. It isn’t bad enough that I find myself on the direct opposite side on just about every issue discussed on this site. I even have a contrarian opinion on this issue as well. I want the government to take all steps necessary to combat terrorist attacks. I even want to see Snowden taken out in Russia for the harm he has done to this country. How is it that my views are so contrarian?

  • Stephen B. .

    “Then they will deliver you up to tribulation, and put you to death (did you see the article of the Priest that was beheaded by the Moslems?); and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake. And then many will fall away, and betray one another. And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. And because wickedness is multiplied, most men’s love will grow cold. But he who endures to the end will be saved.”–Mt.24:9-13
    We are to be “speaking the truth in love”(Ep.4:15), for even “if I speak in the tongues of men and angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging symbol.”(1 Co.13:1).
    Every encounter with surly retorts from agitated people is a little window of opportunity sent to us from God so that we can grow in humility and love. For, just as we build our muscles up by meeting with resistance, so we build up our virtue by meeting with resistance and “exercise our selves to godliness”(1Ti4:7).
    I know that this is a difficult thing, but we are in a war, a race, a fight to the finish. But take heart and keep this in mind, “I have said this to you, that you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”(Jn.16:33).
    As for Papa resigning, one of the most difficult things for us as Catholics to do is to be resigned and obedient. I too was worried and tempted to be disappointed, but immediately forced myself to look on the bright side, that is, now we have a holy Pope retired into deep prayer for the Church, and a wonderfully humble Pope on the Chair of St. Peter, what could be better? May God’s will be done, in God’s way, and in God’s time.
    In Christ, Stephen


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