Causing An Effect

Since we have grown accustomed to parental guilt, we second-guess our parents’ motives too as we become caregivers and emotional providers for those who once taught and cared for us. “Papa says he’ll hate the nursing home, but it has bingo and people his age. I know what’s best for him–he’ll love it there.”

Why this mass presumption to decide for others? I am a big fan of cold weather and snow. No matter how great it makes me feel, I never hear the weather forecaster on TV or radio tell of impending snow or dropping temperatures without attaching doom and gloom to the report, with the prefaced quip, “Now, don’t hate me, folks, I am only the messenger, but it’s going to get really cold this week.” Just once I would like to hear, “Stack those logs up for the fireplace, brew a pot of hot chocolate, get your warmest blanket, and settle in for a great, cozy Cleveland winter night.” But why do that when it is so much easier to be negative, and by all means, let’s never let go of the need to wish for what we don’t have as opposed to making the best of what we do have.

Your Own Reaction

In conclusion, I think we simply have given too much authority and credibility to those who inform us. They have taken it to a level where they speak for us instead of to us. They are ever-present and constantly manipulate what we think.

Have you noticed that almost every picture of Hillary Clinton includes either a rubber-faced expression or her mouth wide open? There are more flattering photos available, I am sure, but the media run those pictures to make a statement without …. making a statement. Do you think it’s not planned when the networks show film of President Bush fumbling through a speech, as opposed to summarizing his comments? The media use every subtle opportunity to nudge us into our opinions. But, as I‘ve written many times before, if we allow ourselves to be victims, we shouldn’t be surprised when we are victimized. Be careful, though, for the seeds you sew with your indifference or with your lack of consideration may come back to harm you.

I leave you with an “old Italian story” I’ve heard for many years. A grandfather was old and failing, and his son decided it was time for the elderly man to go to a nursing home, a place Grandpa had long said he never wanted to go. The old man’s son told his 10-year-old son to go upstairs and get a blanket to put over Grandpa’s shoulders to keep him warm on the ride to the home. When the boy didn’t come back soon, the father went to investigate and found the boy cutting the blanket in half. “What are you doing, son?” “You said to get the blanket for Grandpa,” he replied. “Yes, but why are you cutting it in half?” “Well, I figure in a few years I’ll need the other half for you, Pa.”

Ron Ciancutti is the Purchasing Manager for Cleveland Metroparks. He can be reached via e-mail rdc@clevelandmetroparks.com

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