* Wrote an op-ed at four AM on Sesame Street. It's very good.
* I see an awful lot of white women on Facebook who clearly have avoided Black people their entire lives. They cannot put up enough photos of themselves and other white people, but you'll never see them with a person of color. They'll have no interests pertaining to Black people. Not a lot of John Coltrane music in the old Spotify playlist. You can tell that they come from well-to-do homes. Inevitably, these people will have a Black Lives Matter photo when you scroll through the profile pics. It's always there. Often, they'll have a picture of the Obamas. For these people, Black people are pets. Conceptual pets. Human symbols that they don't count or treat as human. It's amazing, too, how many white women in publishing fit this description.
* It is disturbing to me when I see photos of women sitting with a drugged tiger, like it's a stuffed animal, only, again, it has been drugged. If I see you do this, I know that you have no respect for nature and that nature is lost on you. You're someone to be avoided, if that is true. There is no good that can come from knowing you.
* These same women will quite often have a photo of themselves in Africa, surrounded by starving children in the creepiest of photo ops. One sees the unmitigated suffering in the eyes of the children. I picture the woman throwing the starving children a sawbuck after the photo is taken, as the flies buzz, all but kicking them aside as she gets that sucker up on social media as fast as possible.
* Women with photos in which they are kissing dolphins also disturb me. Dolphins are not cuddly. They are big on rape, actually, if one knows anything about dolphins and nature. Then there is the bestiality aspect. These photos always look make out-y to me. Let the dolphin just be a fucking dolphin. It doesn't have affection for you. That's something you've made up because of your emptiness and ignorance. It's not Flipper, who perished in the jaws of a sperm whale.
* The Rittenhouse verdict will likely come in today. Obviously he acted in self-defense, but the larger issue to me is guns and why even be there? How is it a good idea to walk around outside with a weapon that can kill strapped across your chest? How is it a good idea to do this at seventeen? Is this what a teenager should be doing? How is it a good idea to go to a place where there is anger and violence and danger? Why would you encourage a family member to do this? Why would you put yourself in harm's way? And no, this is not storming the beach in France. Stay home. Go somewhere else. Find something better to do with your time. I can't imagine phoning someone up and saying, "Hell yeah, there's a riot, I'm heading out, should be there in about a half hour." Here's a thought: don't attend riots. So, fine, whatever, he defended himself. That's the law's interest in this case. But he never should have been there, and that he was and that there was the thing to be present at anyway, is the much bigger issue. The left and the right break this down in all of the predictable ways, though. The left says, "Racism!!!!!!!!" and the right says, "hooray for guns and what a hero."
* I think one reason why Thoreau was able to be so moral was that he didn't have personal attachments. He had no one close to his level. He made the best of this situation, by taking his company in ideas, art, nature, writing. When we have personal attachments, we make more allowances. We don't want to think of someone a certain way because of something they do, so we try to find a way to justify what it is that they do. Or we don't think about what that is as we would have otherwise. I know people I think are solid people, and I have no respect for their writing at all. We are not close, and we don't interact much. But if we did, it'd just be easier to find a way to think something else. To change standards, because the personal would take the precedence. I'm not the best example, because this is not true for me. My standards would not change. But that is what happens. It's human nature. That's why it can look like someone believes something they could not possibly believe, or would not believe without the personal connection. It's why you can see someone talk about something that is just awful, as though it wasn't. They're invested in the personal with that other person. And often it will distort. Often, it has to, for that relationship, or whatever it is, to be what it is.
* Speaking of Tigers! I don't think it was a wise move for the baseball club in Detroit to have signed Eduardo Rodriguez, especially to a contract of that length. He's not that good, for starters. Also, he's soft. I would expect that he'll be hurt a lot, which will have a decent amount to do with his lack of mental toughness. Alex Cora was able to get through to him. There won't be someone in Detroit like that.
* Terrible news about ex-Red Sox shortstop Julio Lugo, who died yesterday of a heart attack the day before his forty-sixth birthday. As a shortstop, he was a fit, wiry guy--or at least he was when he played, which wasn't that long ago. I think COVID has overshadowed heart health. That's the real health message--or one of the big ones, certainly--to get out there: Do what you can by your heart. I'm not saying that Lugo did not. I have no idea. What I am saying is that a sobering reminder is a sobering reminder, and it's worth taking note of it and acting accordingly in one's own life.