Sunday, April 27, 2008

It's A Self-Portrait

It's Sunday and Rural Sunday. It is also Mother, Father Deaf Day, and Mantanzas Mule Day. I'm sure there is much to say about going beyond the suburbs and visiting the rural folk, or comments about the need to take a mule out for a stroll... But it makes me wonder a few things. First of all, have we really become such an odd bunch of people on this planet that we need to have a day for everything and anything for them to be important?

I am struck by this as I watch a Nature documentary on penguins and how the krill and other food have decreased by as much as 80% since 2005 - largely because of the antarctic fishing fleets and the changing climate. It was World Penguin Day on Friday - and yet, it is what we as humans are doing every day that is making life for penguins precarious.

It is also National Prime Rib Day, Macaroni Self-Portrait Day, Sleep Day (DAMN!! Wish I'd know that one earlier), Tell a Story Day, Write an Old Friend Day, and Babe Ruth Day. Are all these days ways of making special interest groups feel important? Give them credibility for the beliefs and ideas they promote? Though I'm not sure who the special interest groups are for Macaroni Self-Portrait Day. Kraft? How about Sleep Day? New parents and shift workers? Who comes up with this stuff.

And what about Mantanzas Mule Day? According to and article from the MSN website, "today is Matanzas Mule Day, the day during the Spanish-American War (1898) that the U.S. bombarded Matanzas, Cuba, resulting in one lone casualty... a mule".

Imagine if the US bombarded oh, let's say Iraq, and the lone casualty was a camel. That would certainly be a reason to celebrate. Shame that civilization has come this far...

The US has their own WMDs and they don't seem afraid to use them. Perhaps, while they debate what success will look like in Iraq, the answer is "Until there is but one lone camel standing. Maybe we should be celebrating Mantanzas Mule Day - in spite of the latest US bombardments.

The political landscape, economic failings, fears of global terrorism and the future-effects of global warming are all very real to many people. Perhaps having a reason to celebrate, however benign, gives people something to which they can escape. After all, I'm feeling pretty pessimistic about the state of the world. So if anyone is looking for me, I'm off to make a Macaroni Self Portrait.

Chin up.

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