Five Opinions For The Price Of One

Published in the Ferndale Record, February 25, 2015

Sometimes it’s hard to narrow a column down to just one idea, so this time I didn’t even try. Here are my thoughts on the following:

*A 14-pound baby was born in Florida a few weeks ago, to a woman who claims she didn’t know she was pregnant until her sixth month. These stories fascinate me. Having a baby inside of you, especially a large one, is like being inhabited by an alien. A mother who doesn’t know there’s one in there is always a little suspect to me. The whopping infant, who came into the world with a law degree from Columbia University, drove himself and his mother home from the hospital. Both are doing well.

*Mainstream pornography is now sought after, paid for and brought directly into homes through cable and Netflix. The acceptability of it, in the name of art and brilliant acting or writing, is tragic – and I don’t ever use that word lightly. Orange Is The New Black, Game Of Thrones and Fifty Shades Of Grey are only a few examples. Live and let live may be the politically correct thing to say here, but I won’t be saying it. This kind of entertainment is not sophisticated or intelligent. Porn, no matter how ‘tastefully’ it’s done, or how compelling the story, is a lie, and destroys real love and families. This is an opinion column, right?

*Jonathan Freund, mayor of Sun Prairie, Wisconsin got an earful while ceremoniously presenting the local groundhog, Jimmy. When his handler cleverly held him close to the mayor so Freund could ‘hear’ the forecast, Jimmy leaned in with gusto and took a healthy bite at Freund’s ear. I say Jimmy is tired of this charade and while he’s well fed and required to work only once a year, he’s had enough already. I also believe his actions represent the true feelings of groundhogs everywhere. Back off, mayor – Jimmy’s in charge now.

*When people we’ve known or loved die, especially if it’s unexpected, we can’t believe it. It can’t be true. Our lives and the world will never be the same. It always takes time to process the loss. I heard someone say the reason endings are hard for humans, is because our souls know there’s more, and in our finite state as mortals, we can’t totally grasp that concept. I believe this, and stick by a quote I love, “We should not assume.. that just because something is unexplainable by us, it is unexplainable.”

*Dogs that bark all the time must be exhausted because literally everything gets their attention. In my neighborhood several of them bark whenever I come home, turn a light on in my apartment, turn on the TV, or enter a different room. They bark when the wind blows, when someone shuts a car door, or when they see a rock. And they don’t just bark a couple of times – they do it until their doggie voices become raspy and tired. This can, of course, be annoying, but it’s also slightly amusing to see how often I can get them to respond.

OK. Next month’s plan: grab one topic and go with it.

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