Archive for September 2009

The hidden mountain behind the molehill: President Obama’s school speech and Creatures from the Id

September 9, 2009

The uproar regarding the President’s speech to schoolchildren today was essentially much ado about nothing, from the very beginning.  But then the uproar itself became the something, and we were no longer talking about nothing anymore.

All day as “bridgebldr” on the Oprah discussion forum, I have been nursing a thread I started discussing the President’s speech.   It was #1 in popularity on the front page of http://www.oprah.com all day today, just as it was yesterday (under Everyone’s Talking About” on lower left).    If you are curious or want to join in on the fun, check out http://www.oprah.com/community/thread/116165.

What is interesting about this entire controversy is that it started out being a conversation about what really was a molehill, no matter how tall and darkly looming some chose to portray it.  Who can really complain about the President encouraging students to take school seriously?  And yet complain they did, but it wasn’t about the molehill at all, it was about the mountain, that mountain of mythology which looms ever higher and darker, teeming with all sorts of nasty creatures, the constructs of minds filled with fear.

Not long ago I had the pleasure of watching a film that terrified me in my youth.  I was not yet born when it was first made, but it found its way to reruns on many a random Sunday afternoon.  “Creatures from the Id” lived in this film, those things our fears create, creatures which grow ever larger when gorged by the ever more creative fears of the masses.

If you choose to see a conspiracy, you will see a conspiracy.  And even if some conspiracies are real, it is our fears which give them power.  Creatures from the Id they do indeed become, tearing our world apart in very real ways. 

I choose not to feed the beast.  That planet is indeed forbidden to all of us, for that planet, our planet, will be no more, if we collectively choose to take that path.  I choose the dawn, which is indeed breaking, despite the lingering darkness of the night. 

And when it comes to the molehill, as a Mom, I for one appreciate the President taking time out of his busy schedule, not only today, but probably far more than he anticipated in recent days, to give a heartfelt, honest, encouraging message to our nation’s most precious resource – our children.

In peace,
BridgeBuilder

A blogless blogger finally blogs…

September 8, 2009

After essentially being a blogless blogger for a very long time, I am finally venturing formally into the blog domain. I have been writing online as bridgebldr (or BridgeBuilder) for quite some time, most visibly and frequently in the Oprah discussion forum and more recently in compressed form on Twitter.

The Oprah forum is unique in the sense that the most popular posts migrate to the front page of http://www.oprah.com under “Everyone’s Talking About” on lower left. It’s truly amazing that more people haven’t discovered the gratification and sense of community derived from discussion forums such as Oprah’s, even the visibility. But it’s a pure art straight from the heart, in many ways a throwback to earlier days online, and this is not the first discussion forum I have participated in, nor the last. There is no one who is going to pay you by popularity, no way to include ads, and the focus is somewhat more on the content of what EVERYONE has to say on a particular thread, as essentially equal participants.

It is because of a very lively discussion in that location right now, ranked #1 in popularity at this very moment on Oprah’s front page, that I’m finally venturing into becoming an “official” blogger. It’s not the first time I have managed to get a topic onto Oprah’s front page – it’s actually an amazingly approachable thing to do, though you wouldn’t think so, and there is no way of planning or predicting it – it just happens when it happens. If you are curious, check out the topic “Criticism of President Obama’s message to schoolchildren is WAY out of bounds” here: http://www.oprah.com/community/thread/116165

And you can learn a great deal more about what I tend to talk about here: http://www.oprah.com/community/people/bridgebldr

I do venture where others often fear to tread, but I’m used to it by now. Be aware that discussion forum threads are a bit different from blogs in format. They tend to start small with a question, then grow into blog-like responses, kind of like blogging in reverse.

And I post a completely different form of content on Twitter (http://www.twitter.com/bridgebldr) – this is where you’ll see my poetic side come out, one tweet at a time. I like to post affirmations that are spiritually uplifting, giving people a little boost to their day. Apparently 2300+ followers have appreciated that (at least the ones that aren’t drones, lol), and I earned those followers the old-fashioned way, one at a time since March, again writing straight from the heart. People on Twitter seem to think I’m enlightened, but I’ll let you in on a little secret – a lot of those tweets are reminders to ME, on those days when I need to be reminded, when I don’t feel quite as enlightened as my muse tends to be. If others can benefit from my reminders, wonderful!

Ultimately I am finally doing what I love to do: WRITE

And I intend to do A LOT more of it now, in many diverse ways. I was always a writer from the day I learned to hold a pen – insightful young poet & story teller, spontaneous essayist and award-winning high school newspaper editor, etc. etc etc. It was essentially my writing which earned me a full-paid ride in college. It was my writing that was my passion and my purpose, or so it seemed. But then a day came when my voice hushed itself into silence. Maybe we will talk about that another time.

Thankfully another day dawned, after many years of rest, and on that day, I finally found something to write about…

In peace,
BridgeBuilder