She’s ba-ack! by Marjorie Arons Barron

The entry below is being cross-post from Marjorie Arons Barron’s own blog.

Three months ago, for the first time in 13 years, I took temporary leave of my blog to deal with the fall-out (unfortunate term in this context) of having tripped and broken what turned out to be seven ribs, with some complications. Doctors said I would take at least three months to heal, and I am well on my way. Thanks to my doctors, my husband Jim (best friend and caregiver), and family members and friends who supported me through the process, I move on with optimism – and a few extra pounds. For me, the experience was life-interrupting but, thankfully, not life-altering.

At the time I guiltily took a break from my writing, I was certain the issues of concern in February would still be front page when I returned. How true it is. And, despite my having been an unreformed news junkie and spending 50+ years in the news business, I haven’t missed the 24/7 cycle one bit, the incessant noise, the constant repetition without useful information and the police scanner mentality driving news agendas.

The beat goes on: the disconnect between public opinion and spineless elected officials; unabated gun violence, the attacks on reproductive freedom, Clarence Thomas’ conflicts of interest and outright corruption; Russian brutality in Ukraine and on its own people; worsening climate change; stubborn inflation. Right-wing mob attacks on trans people and books. Sanctimonious left-wingers taking their “woke” awareness to new extremes, including one Massachusetts school system rescinding a job offer to a superintendent candidate for addressing two women as “ladies.” Ladies and gentlemen, I rest my case.

When I went down, the GOP seemed poised to move beyond Trump. Now, though it’s still early, he continues to hold the hearts and minds of Republican primary voters. The next presidential election may be a replay of Biden v. Trump, despite strong discontent about the choices on both sides.

As climate change spurs early emergence of delicate spring flowers and abnormally high pollen, I look for reasons to be optimistic. In our increasingly diverse neighborhood, children are back on their bikes, playing happily together, and their young parents are increasingly involved in civic life. We returned to my beloved Boston Symphony after months of isolation to recuperate. The multitude of rabbits in our yard are still cute though it’s only a matter of time till I yearn for the return of hawks to keep them under control and save my plants.

Even in a toxic Congress there are rays of hope. The new Select Committee on Competition with China holds promise for bipartisanship on several critical matters. Support for Ukraine appears to be holding, both internationally and domestically. Donald Trump was finally indicted, and, though it would have been better to have started with his more serious criminal activities, at long last there is a hint that no person is above the law.

In Newton, the Hotel Indigo, in anticipation of long-planned redevelopment, will for two years be used for emergency housing for homeless families with children. And, after dynamic regular-season play by the Celtics and the Bruins, we’re in the NBA and NHL playoffs. Meanwhile, over at Fenway, the Red Sox are playing some exciting ball, and watching them is no longer like root canal.

With the winter and my accident increasingly in the rear view mirror, I’m eager for your take on the state of the world this spring and how we can all draw strength from one another. Charlie Brown once sadly told Snoopy, “Some day, we will all die, Snoopy.” To which, the furry philosopher replied, “True, but on all the other days, we will not.” Carpe diem, my friends. Indeed, carpe minutem!!!

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