For as far back into childhood as I can remember, my parents taught me to keep informed about current events. My family subscribed to a local paper, as well as a national one, the Christian Science Monitor. We religiously watched network television news featuring Walter Cronkite. We listened to National Public Radio.
My wife, obviously, was not raised in my family's value system. She has always been puzzled by my interest in keeping abreast of news-sports-traffic-and-weather, and "information." She has long advocated for a different approach: engaging in local action, while eschewing national news. "Why bother with news you cannot change?" she would ask. I thought she just didn't get it.
When we moved in together in 1971, we had no trouble evicting television; we simply never bought one. Now, almost 40 years later, it appears, happily, that we will never will.
We used to read newspapers. At one point I regularly read three papers. Ah, change! Today, the Christian Science Monitor doesn't offer a print edition. Our regional daily is anorexic— two thin sections, and if it slims down any further it shall disappear entirely. We don't subscribe. I get the regional daily at work, but it seldom interests me enough to even touch it. Our local weekly seems to be hanging in there. It's a quick read, down, now, to just one section.
That leaves radio and the Internet. In regard to radio, I gave up commercial radio years ago because I cannot abide listening to crazed exhortations to buy things. NPR leaves me with the suspicion that all things are not considered, not by far. I don't look at news on the Internet. Blogs are about my only touch with current affairs these days. And my blog list isn't news oriented, is it?
What do I do with all the time I save by not keeping up to date with current affairs?
There's time to take a walk out to the flower-filled fields.
Reflect on my many blessings.
and to stand under real blossoms, realizing that I'll never really understand them.
That's what I did this afternoon!