Happy New Year everyone. May your resolutions last longer than your hangover. I have celebrated New Year’s in a number of ways, but this old soul is less inclined to stay up until midnight these days. Living on the east coast of the US, we have resorted to celebrating the New Year’s on Greewich time, so we are done early.
I learned yesterday the legendary actress Betty White left us just shy of her 100th birthday. She has always been a character and has played many different types of roles over the years. She played nice girl roles for the longest time, so when she played the back-stabbing Sue Ann Niven in the 1970s on the “Mary Tyler Moore Show” it was a shock. Yet, she went onto many other roles in the 1980s and 1990s on the “Golden Girls” and “Hot in Cleveland.”. And, she was a terrific humanitarian and friend to animals. May she RIP.
Going in to 2022 and its insane campaign season which started about eleven months ago, we must try to regain some level of civil discourse in our society. Since changing politicians and opinion entertainers seems nigh impossible. we will have to make this a ground up change and force them to notice.
Here a few rules of the road that might help:
-if someone speaks or writes with name calling, labelling and cursing as their modus operandi, do what I often do and stop reading and do not respond. If this is the how the person wishes to argue, then his or her argument is poor.
-cease watching opinion entertainers who are dressed-up spin-doctors at best and disinformation peddlers at worst. Some do their homework more than others, but you are being told an opinion, often times not a well-supported one.
-if you are getting your news from someone on social media who you like because you agree with them, please do not consider that news and refer to the first two items above.
-if you are getting your news from a politician, check other sources; some have more veritas than others, but too many are just spouting BS without doing much homework. I used to think elected officials knew more than we do (and some did), but I stopped thinking that long ago. They also expect us to have short memories.
-you have two ears and one mouth, use them in that proportion. Ask more questions of people and listen to their answers. Listen to understand, not to respond. Only then can you follow-up with comments, but make sure you give like you want to get. Calling a person an idiot is not a good sales pitch.
-be civil to each other. Sometimes the best thing to say, is not to say it. Look for common ground, by doing that listening thing noted above. You may disagree on five points, but agree on two. That is a start.
One final thought to drum in your head. An old friend used to say “you can never have enough cups of coffee with people.” Engage. Converse. Catch-up. And, thank the other person for their time and interest. Time and interest are the best gifts someone can give you.
Be safe in 2022. Be well and be wise.
Happy New Year Keith and excellent advice!
Thanks Joy. All the best.
Wise words to kick off a new year, Keith. All the best.
Thanks VJ. Back at you.
Already with your first paragraph of tips, you got me totally. We don’t always need to reply. We do ourselves a favor not to, even though we think the other one thinks they won. In the end, you cannot win an argument with someone who only wants to take you down. In the end, everything comes down to this one sentence you said: -you have two ears and one mouth, use them in that proportion.
Thank you for your advice here and for sharing your down-to-earth wisdom. It often helped me to get my feet on the ground again. Happy New Year, Keith 🍄
Thanks Erika. I like what you added. Take care. Keith
Thank you, Keith!
All good advice, my friend. Now we need to work to follow it … at least I know I need to, for far too often I let my temper or angst shove aside my good sense. Easy to do in these trying times, but still not terribly productive.
Jill, it is easy to do these days, especially with those who don’t let the truth come out to play very often. Have a healthy New Year. You could use a few less hurdles. Take care, Keith
Thank you, Keith! Yes, if I were to write my autobiography, I would likely title it “I Need Fewer Hurdles!”
I sure will miss Betty White. She was funny, active, positive and lived an interesting life. I loved her attitude and how she was always willing to rise to any challenge and make the best of any situation. And she was another “Rose from Minnesota”. 😊
Rose, I had not made your final connection. She was loved by many. Keith
Note to Readers: Although most politicians are quick to take credit for things and blame others, there are some who do so with a greater frequency than others. Listen to what they say and how they say it. There are lots of “I’s” and fewer “We’s” used. And, mea culpas are hard to come by in their vocabulary. Take what they say with a grain of salt and you will be better served. And, whatever you do don’t spread their words as gospel truth, as there is not enough salt to pass around.
Great advice, Keith! I am both looking forward to – and dreading – the year ahead. I sure wish it wasn’t an election year so we could have a bit of peace. Happy New Year, my friend!
Janis, me too. The lying and disinformation will be heightened further testing us even more. There seems to be less downside to lying. Keith
Very wise advice Keith, in particular on where you get your ‘news’. This is probably why some folk hate the BBC, the information does not fit their mindset.
Best wishes for the year ahead.
Roger, thanks. You as well. Keith
Great recommendations, Keith. Greenwich Time. I’ll have to remember that. I haven’t celebrated new years since about the change of the century. I think my relatives think I’m nuts. Even the nonagenarian of the tribe always goes out to a “Sylvester Party.”
Linda, twenty-two years is a long time. I must ask what is a Sylvester Party? Keith
Sylvester is what the Germans call New Year’s Eve. I guess it is just a German thing. I’ve often wondered if that wasn’t a more broadly used moniker that I had just not heard of before getting to know my Germans. I really have no idea how Sylvester translates to New Year. I always think of a cat. when I hear that word. 🤣
Linda, that is a new one on me. I was ready to put on my Elmer Fudd hat. Keith