At times like these, it really helps to have a sense of humour.
Not only is Whistler limping through one of its all-time worst seasons, new snow notwithstanding, our main source of aprés excitement, NHL hockey, is still taking a time-out.
The worlds in not such hot shape either. Ultra-conservative nutcases have taken over the free world. Hundreds of thousands are still homeless and jobless after the Dec. 26 Tsunami, the worst natural disaster in history. The modern economy a completely artificial structure that is critically flawed in its design is not doing so well, and for some reason that has a real impact on everybody. Add to that the high profile debate over issues like gay marriage and you get the idea that society is stuck in a pointless "values" rut that we may never get out of. Instead of coming together, people are further apart then ever before because weve lost the civility to agree to disagree on just about anything and everything.
Underlying all of this are a series of increasingly ominous pronouncements by climate scientists that mankind is on a collision course with forces we ourselves set in motion. The latest bad news comes from the international conference on climate change currently being held in the U.K., which suggests that eight billion people as well the majority of the worlds resources, will be severely stressed by about 2050 when average temperatures increase by just two degrees Celsius.
I try to do my part. Im taking the David Suzuki Nature Challenge and the Melting Mountains Peak Challenge, I dont eat meat, I recycle everything, and Im careful where I spend, invest and donate my money. I feel better for caring and acting, but its not enough.
Being in the media industry, I read and watch a lot of news and after a while that can get depressing. Part of its the mainstream medias fault and its need to manufacture one crisis after another to appease the rubberneckers of the world, but its overkill and no wonder people are tuning out.
The fact that Im around so much bad news all the time has seriously affected my overall happiness. Ive actually absorbed so much bad news at this point that my habit of repeating depressing facts and figures has earned me the nickname Debbie Downer in the office, after the pessimistic Saturday Night Live character.
I used to be the class clown, and now Im Debbie Downer.
Im not at the Prozac stage just yet, but I do have to work harder to keep my sense of humour stimulated. Luckily there is no shortage of things to laugh about when your standards are as low as mine.