Sunday, July 24, 2016

What You Need to Know to Start Your Day

In this tech age, I still have a newspaper delivered to my door daily. Amendment:  My husband has a newspaper delivered to our door, and I read some of it. I also read the online news every morning. I have one foot in the last century and one foot in this one. That’s encouraging because I thought I had lost the dexterity to straddle anything. I set up my landing page in my Google account with links to top stories at an array of media outlets, blah-dy-blah-dy-blah. Sorry. I will put a quarter in the jar for talking Geek. Suffice it to say that I check a variety of media newsfeeds every morning with hyperlinks to articles that change throughout the day. One of them displays a hyperlink every morning that reads, What you need to know to start your day:  news item A, news item B, news item C, news item D.

For example, What you need to know to start your day:  Munich, Bozo, Watermelon cures erectile dysfunction, Dogs in costumes at Comi-Con. You can see the importance of reading these articles to start your day. Sometimes the list is so cryptic in its brevity that I click out of curiosity. For instance, Pajamas, Vikings, Cigars, Caterpillars. If you kind of squint and tilt your head to the left, that strongly resembles an SAT test question. Pajamas are to Vikings as Cigars are to Caterpillars. Vikings don’t wear pajamas, caterpillars don’t smoke cigars. Could work. Or maybe the person who selected those items was a renegade intern who was up all night partying and decided to start her day with a mimosa followed by random thoughts.

I wonder how a media outlet selects which news bytes stand out above all others, requiring our attention, to inform the day. How do these factoids rate as the priority factoids we must know to have an informed, productive, fulfilling, successful, positive, blah-dy-blah-dy-blah day? I must turn to my own experience, because I live in my own head. (Which is a good thing because I think that when you live in someone else’s head they call it schizophrenia and it requires some type of medication I would hesitate to take.) When I woke up this morning, I thought (in my own head), “If I don’t find out, real soon, how many peaches to put in a peach cobbler, tricks to putting nail polish on my toenails, why a duck, and whether Keith Richards is still alive, then I am in danger of having a terrible, horrible, ill-informed, no-good day.” Not. I would like to know those things. But knowing is not critical to the progress of my day. (Well, maybe the peaches.)

Question to ponder:  What things do you need to know to start your day?

I’ll go first. What things do I need to know to start my day?
1) My husband is still alive. (I check on him every morning because he has Type I diabetes and an unaddressed low blood sugar episode could do him in – so far we have dodged that bullet.) I suppose it wouldn’t hurt to know about Keith Richards too.
2) How much I weigh before my shower. How much I weigh after my shower. How much weight I lost in the shower.
3) We have coffee.
4) The cat did not barf on a rug. The other cat did not barf on a rug either.
5) My dress is not inside-out. (Will fix if not.)
6) There is no bird trapped in the kitchen (you would be surprised at how often this situation may occur in real life so be prepared).
7) The weather report.
8) What came in on my email. (Especially from my children.)
9) What fruit is in season.
10) Is there money in my bank account?
11) How big the zucchinis got overnight and how many I need to pick, eat, or give away. (This is a summer fact.)
12) Something to laugh about.

And, but this is not 13, because 13 would be an unlucky way to start a day. I need to know good news to start my day. Not news about tragedies and violence in the world. Not news about the latest bad decisions made by numbskulls who mismanage the leadership of countries (or who aspire to do so) and the idiots who vote for them. Not news about celebrities, high finance, and, let’s be honest, physics (because I don’t get physics). I need to know news about acts of kindness, increased access to nutritional food, my friends’ grandchildren, music, people who plant trees, advances in environmental preservation and renewal, spontaneous drumming, rainbow fireworks, and unicorns farting violets. I need to know where I put the dark chocolate.

Number 12 on my hypothetical list above:  I need to laugh, I need to know something funny to start my day. I work at coming up with something funny to write on this blog so that I can give you, my reader, a laugh. Laughter is a powerful healer, a force for good. Because I want my children to start their week on a laugh, I send them a corny joke every Monday morning. Last week’s joke was my biggest hit yet. Now that I beta-tested it on my children, I feel comfortable sharing it with you. It goes like this:  “A man walks up to a blind man and hands him a piece of matzah. The blind man asks, ‘Who wrote this nonsense?’”

Have a great start to your day. Have a great start to your week. Have a laugh.

I googled “zucchini on matzah” to find an image for this blog post and this is the best I could find. 
Arugula on matzah is funnier than zucchini on matzah. I suppose the caption should read,
 “Who put arugula on this nonsense?”

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