An AMERICAN past time

It’s that time of year again.  Orange blossoms and suburban loners without kids volunteering to paint white chalk lines at right angles and wars to change the narrative.

Remember the Maine, or the Lusitania, Battleship Row, the Gulf of Tonkin, and that one guy with the sideburns in Charleston Harbor- wait who was it we were supposed to remember?   It’s hard keepin’ track…

Yep.  As soon as the lilies bloom and the rules of the Senate alter forever it’s time to engage in the great American Past time.

War.

As of 2015, the United States have been at war 223 of our 239 years as a nation.  134 wars to be exact. And just like baseball a lot depends on the score keeper –   Oh, by the way, that’s 93% of the time.  (Do an internet search or read Howard Zinn and you will quickly find the same figures)   The longest streak – not counting anything Joltin’ Joe was involved in – was during those great shining years of the Depression.

Not the unnamed and normalized one we live in now bolstered by a failing credit system where nothing and nobody lives within their means or can afford the high cost of living –  that other Depression where people ate grass soup out of flaming trash cans and somebody thought it was a bright idea to hire Artists to document the whole thing.

Thank God somebody had the foresight to call them all Pinko-Commies to put an end to that or we’d all be folk singers.

134.  Mind you, that only takes into account some of the proxy wars, the things we orchestrated, armed and ultimately backfired to further destabilize any region not geographically well suited and in possession of some kind of valued natural resource.  The freedom fighters who usually end up turning rogue and terrorist all in the name of “keeping the world safe for democracy” and “defeating the Red Menace.”

Gosh.  You would think that maybe it was our intention to …

My friend Greg reminded me that I used to run around during the summer when we were kids saying we were living during the fall of the Roman Empire and quoted E. Gibbon a lot.  I was a weird kid who had a set of encyclopedias outside my door and didn’t sleep well at night.

We’d be playing whiffle-ball and making dream teams of heroes who we didn’t know were all jacked up on ‘roids – and I would be the harbinger of doom talking about how in time “we will be the first generation to be worse off than their parents.”

It kinda makes me laugh today.  Kinda.

I don’t know.  Not much anyway.   Elisa said between coughs last night as we cuddled in the dark before sleep– “Gosh, in this crazy mad world I’m glad I got you.”

matt-doherty-029