Blogs Are Stupid

Doesn't anyone believe in Dear Diary anymore? What happened to the joy of putting actual pen to paper? And why does every ordinary Jane and John think they can write well enough to burden the world with their scribblings? It’s a mystery that badly needs solving. My first entry contains my thoughts about blogging and will set your expectations. The rest will probably be stream of consciousness garbage, much like you’ll find on any other blog. Perhaps we will both come away enlightened.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Hello, In There...Hello

My life has a soundtrack, and I'm sure the same is true for many of you. Generally, I like mustic with a really rollicking beat; something to get my blood pumping, my fingers snapping, and my feet dancing. But when I'm feeling melancholy, instrospective, nostalgic or mellow, I like something smooth and sultry, something warm and whimsical.

Sometimes it's Dean Martin. Sometimes it's Norah Jones. Sometimes it's Bette Midler.

I love me some Bette. I'm really dating myself with that admission, but I don't care. I love the way her voice wraps around me like an embrace; rich, resonant, fluid. Whether she's being sassy or sentimental, her words always tell a story, they always move me.

She sings in the same key as I do, so I can really belt it out along with her. And I do.

I know almost all of her songs word for word. But there are a few that haven't, for whatever reason, struck a chord with me, and those I just hum through, half listening, waiting for one of my favorites.

This morning, sorting laundry, my mind filled with worry over sick kids and churning with the never ending list of to-do's, something caught my attention, and I stopped for a moment.

The song was "Hello In There" and it's one of the hum throughs. I've never really stopped to listen to the words, never really cared. But these words hit me like a fist.

Ya know that old trees just grow stronger,
And old rivers grow wilder evry day.
Old people just grow lonesome
Waiting for someone to say, hello in there, hello

I didn't intend to write a post about the massacre at Virginia Tech, because although it is undeniably tragic, and we all feel something deep inside when we think of it...there comes a point when it's all been said.

But people are angry. Really, really angry. And who can blame them? Their loved ones lie dead. Innocent and unlucky, they were simply the victims of time and chance. They hurt no one, they did nothing to deserve their horrible fate. And it's normal to be angry. And it normal to direct that anger at the person who took those lives.

But I think that anger is misdirected a bit.

People knew that this Cho fella was disturbed. They saw it, they felt it, they read it. And nobody did anything. By their own admission, they were just waiting for the day they saw his face on the news.


Well because in today's society, we all walk around cocooned by our own lives. We don't ask, don't tell. We lower our heads and avert our eyes. We don't want to get involved. We don't want to seem nosy. We mind our own business, until our business is tragedy. And then we weep and wail and ask why.

We don't stop to say, "Hello in there....Hello."

Maybe he just needed someone to ask him what was wrong. Maybe he just needed to feel like someone gave a damn. The shooting wasn't his only cry for help. He tried to reach out. Everything about him was screaming for help. But instead of taking a moment to say..."Hello in there...Hello", students and faculty alike tittered over his strangeness. They made flip remarks about him going postal. They ignored his humanity to make him more suitable as the butt of jokes.

People, we have got to start paying attention.

When someone is lonely, hungry, sad, empty, angry, lost...we have to look and see and then do something about it.

There's an elderly lady who begs for change at the local Starbucks. Lots of people give her money. Nobody looks at her. Nobody asks her why she has to beg. The last time I saw her I smiled and said hello as I handed her a dollar. She jerked as if I had struck her. My friendliness surprised her. And that my dear people, is a shameful thing.

We have to take a moment to say "Hello in there....Hello."

Or we will soon be a nation populated by Chos and the consequences will be devastating to the human race.

"Hello in there...hello."


On a happier note, I'd like to thank Doodaddy, In the Trenches and Rachelle, for giving me a Thinking Blogger Award. I have to admit, it gives me a little ripple of satisfaction. There are so many really intelligent people saying meaningful things out there and I love that bloggers who are writing really fantastic stuff are being recognized.

Ironically, I was going to award Doodaddy AND Rachelle, but someone beat me to it. So, lessee....

I want to nominate my friend Kirdy at Urbane Chaos. She has recently returned from a pretty lengthy hiatus due to moving, and I am so glad! Whether she is writing about world issues or potty training, she is always fun and interesting to read.

I also want to nominate my friend Nina over at Closer to Fine. Nina is a 40 something mother of 4 who recently come out as a lesbian, and everyday she gives me insight into the struggle for acceptance, understanding and tolerance.

Then there is Omegamom. She and I used to run in the same circle once upon a time, but a series of unfortunate events caused us to go our separate ways. These days she is a strong advocate for adoption awarness and a terriffic source of information and support for those considering adoption. She also writes very enterainingly about her 4 year old adopted "dotter". She calls herself "good enough Mom" and who can help but admire that?

And lastly there is Andrea over at Little Bald Doctors. Recently, Andrea contemplated not blogging anymore, because she felt that she wasn't doing any blogging of substance. I beg to differ. She did not throw in the towel, I'm happy to say and since then, her writing, always good, has reflected a really stunning sincerity and depth.

Pass it on.


  • At 1:10 PM, Blogger Avalon said…

    I happen to love that Bette Midler song, mainly because my work often brings me in contact with lonely elderly people.

    Your take on the news events in thought provoking. However, having worked in an inner-city Emergency Department for many years, I can honestly say that there is a population of people who are angry, disturbed, vengeful, possibly dangerous......and they refuse help. Simply refuse it. Try as we might, they refuse to take the help that is offered time and time again. And, more often than not, that is their right. However, when it all goes to shit, there is a big outcry against the very organizations that tried to offer the assistance.

    I don't know what the answer is, but I can assure you, sometimes "hello" is just not enough.

  • At 6:47 PM, Blogger Wendy said…

    I havent listen to all the News regarding this story, but I have heard that many did report his bizarre behavior and he was admitted to a mental hospital. The basic thread is that the authorities could not do anything until Cho did something that threatened the public.

    I agree with the sentiment of your post. Many are surprised with kindness and many are scared to reach out for fear of judgement. Our society has become hidden by our technology. We would much rather open up on the Internet than in real life.

  • At 8:14 PM, Blogger Fairly Odd Mother said…

    Have you seen Just a Mom's recent posts? Gosh, so heartbreaking and chilling at the same time. She echoes a bit what avalon just said in her comment above. She's at:
    (also read her 4.17 post about her son)

  • At 8:31 PM, Blogger Girlplustwo said…

    i still stand by compassion. could compassion prevent tragedies? I don't know. I think so.

    And now, regardless of the other musical references, i am leaving with Lionel Ritchie in tow, asking, Hello, is it me you're looking for....

  • At 10:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    As much as I hate to admit it, I think there's a lot of truth to what Avalon said. Sometimes, there's just not enought to do to get the people help who need it the most. I wish all it too was a friendly hello, an inquiry as to how they are faring.

    And thank you (!!!) for the Thinking Blogger award! Coming from someone who writes as well and as in depth as you do, I'm truly flattered.

  • At 11:53 PM, Blogger nina said…

    Who me? *Nina bats her eyes* Thank you baby! You are very kind and generous with your praise. I am flattered.


  • At 6:50 AM, Blogger OhTheJoys said…

    I nominated you for those bloggers choice things, friend. I'm about to be a nominatrix I think!

  • At 9:34 AM, Blogger Chicky Chicky Baby said…

    I admit that sometimes I'm too wrapped up in my own life to notice others and that makes me ashamed. I wasn't always like this and I certainly don't want my daughter growing up without compassion. Thanks for the kick in the behind.

  • At 11:02 AM, Blogger Kirdy said…

    There are no easy answers for something as horrific as VT. There definitely are many missed moments and opportunities.

    Thanks for the Thinking Blogger Award! At least one person likes me! ;) Considering that one person is you, it's a great honor.


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