It seems that there needs to be some sort of fundamental shift in the global geopolitical picture in order to get me to write a blogpost nowadays; and the last one, on the collapse of Afghanistan, I didn’t even get around to publishing. The time for that seems long passed, now. We’re in yet another future—one where not only is Britain not in the EU; not only did our lives get upended by a global pandemic; not only did the previous insane US president incite a mob to attack his own capital; not only did the republican government of Afghanistan collapse like a cold soufflé; BUT the Russians have just gone and invaded Ukraine for basically no reason, and turned pretty much the entire world against them.
I must not be alone in feeling this sensation: viewing the world with the kind of uncomfortable ache of watching everything being undermined and going to shit. Kind of like I were George Lucas, having just sold Star Wars to Disney—only unlike Lucas, I have to keep going to the cinema to watch them butcher everything I thought I knew.
I suppose this is what living through actual history feels like. When you’re young, you feel like you have an idea where things are going. After a decade or two more, you start to think maybe you know better. But even the oldest human alive has got nothing on Clio, history’s muse, and her comparatively vast narration on human behaviour. Any student of history will see those patterns repeating in all these follies and lunacies, but for some reason nobody ever takes such cautionaries seriously when it comes to steering clear of them.
So we are where we are. I keep trying to tell myself that it’s a senseless waste of effort worrying about things over which I have utterly no control (I don’t think I even have readers, let alone an audience or influence). But that only works so well. Much as nobody has any choice over what they believe (you either are convinced, or you’re not), you can’t really choose what you worry about. You can only distract yourself so you forget about it, and that feels disingenuous at best and downright zombifying at worst. But it is still clearly the case that this overthinking is wasting my time and making me feel like crap, with no potential for positive change to show for it.
Thus I choose to simply list my woes and share the pain. Perhaps in this way I can at least set it straight in my head, so that I can take a clear picture going forward; in case any of it ever does affect anything significantly.
Let’s hope we’re all still here in a month’s time to witness perhaps another entry; I’d like to do these semi-regularly. Also, last week we met our second daughter Zoe; so as you might imagine, I am particularly hopeful that the human race can stave off its self-annihilating tendencies for a little while longer, yet.