Based on the date of my last post in this space, it would seem that I took a brief summer vacation. That was not my intent as such, but I confess to finding myself more than unusually busy over the last several weeks. I’ve been working on my 100+ year-old house, my 49-year-old tractor, and any number of other things to either prepare them for the coming winter or simply catch up on tasks which accumulated.
Since my break, I see that very little has changed in the world. We are still at war in the Middle East–and likely to open up another front in that war if the current scuttlebutt is to be believed. We are also finding ourselves as a culture far more interested in the personal failings (though serious) of a football player and his wife than in the behavior of the IRS. I’d say par for the course, but it seems awfully close to mixing a metaphor. I also see that we are finally warming up the competitions for a number of the mid-term races across the country. Now that we have less than two months to go, we lack little more than a handful of October surprises before we come up on the big day.
Tomorrow marks an important anniversary of a tragic day in our history. Thirteen years ago, I was in my 20s and married without children. One of those things is still true. That aside, the world has changed, and largely not for the better, since we Americans were briefly shaken our of our first-world complacency by 19 men who used the tools of the 21st century in an attack whose end goal would seem to be to move us back to the 7th century.
To those who would see only those things which are not going well (and the list is long), don’t become discouraged. I am reminded of the following statement by James Whitcomb Riley:
The most essential factor is persistence – the determination never to allow your energy or enthusiasm to be dampened by the discouragement that must inevitably come.