Friday, June 1, 2018

Caffè Venerdì: Just because you can...

So, we've come to the end of the week, to the end of another month...and I've come to the end of my Caffè Tomasso Portuguese Roast. I'd love to tell you all about it, but the content on the package is, for the most part, in Portuguese...though, I can tell you very simply how it drinks. Basically, if you need a coffee for guests that range anywhere from, say...truck driver sludge to coffee snob...this would be a good serve.

I usually like to sample coffee beans before committing to a purchase, or like to get recommendations from friends, but from time to time, I also venture out to exotic sites and places, like...Amazon! Which is where I found Caffè Tomasso. Sometimes it can be a hit or miss when you spin the online wheel, but this one was a winner, and I must buy more.

This week was just filled with eye-rolls, wasn't it? Roseanne's show being cancelled...Trump's pardons, etc. It will never cease to amaze me what corporate media throws in, blends up and and forces into our eyeballs as "news", but...that's just me. Most of the time I can just skim through Facebook and get the skinny, but I have my own community news blog, Amador Community News, that I have to get going each morning. I don't have too very much time to dwell on the drama du jour, so I really have to sift through and rely on the local communities of Amador County to come through. And they do.

It wasn't so long ago that any subject matter would politically charge me to the point of argument. Most of my friends and those who have followed me on Facebook can attest to this. There was a time where I would skim through the "news" and posts, and something would always set me off. Mainly politics, yes, but some topics would get me chomping at the bit. Sometimes, when I went on a vent, the comment threads would go on for days; sometimes you could cue the crickets. Either way, I've learned a lot about people, their feelings and opinions, their own experiences, perspectives and wisdom...

It's interesting how a major life change can give you a whole new perspective. Looking back, I came to the realization that I wasn't very happy with the person I had become. I was stressed out, filled with anxiety and negativity, was told that I was a "fence dweller" (politically, since I'm non-partisan)...called "dangerously naive"...a "libertard"...was barraged by folks convincing me to jump on their bandwagons (and sheesh, the bands weren't even that good!)...and unfortunately, I lost some very good friends along the way.

It took me roughly eight months to figure out that the Carol I had become wasn't the Carol I wanted to be. But who had I become? It wasn't until I moved back home that I could get an "aerial view" of my life's journey thus far, and saw that I was letting the daily "drama du jour" affect me, define me, influence me. I lived in California, collectively, for about 30 years (with a stint in Nashville, TN in between), and though the interstate transition was wide (obviously physically and politically), I've had to wring myself out and think about how I want to shape the rest of my life. My life.

I'm still non-partisan, and always will be. I didn't vote for Trump or Hillary (I wrote in "Captain America"). I know folks who are full-on Trump supporters. I know folks who voted for Trump only because of their party affiliation, and have expressed their regret and remorse. I know folks who are still crying over Hillary. I know plenty of folks who don't really give a damn.

My perspective now, as I continue on my path for me, is that I'm shaping my life, not based on politics, religion or bandwagons, but on "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." I want to be happy...and politics, religion and bandwagons weren't making me happy. My opinion of Trump, though it might not be popular (and I don't care) is: He's a businessman with a inflated ego that ran for and became President, and, in my estimation, didn't know what he was getting himself into. That's irrelevant now, he's our President. But to me, as I try to get that aerial view from several vantage points of the "political sky" retrospect, I wish someone would have sat Trump down at some point, pre-2016, and said: "Just because you can run for President, doesn't mean you should."

I will be visiting California next week, and I'm so excited to see those who are [still] my friends, regardless of red state versus blue. I've been asked, "Why do you continue Amador Community News when you don't even live in California anymore?" Because I can...and should. I've been all about community media for over twelve years now, and ACN has evolved to a point where so many rely on it. Believe me, it wasn't/hasn't been easy to create and maintain an information and resource site that is untainted by partisan persuasion. It's not a fancy site with a lot of flashy ads, bells and whistles, have no idea how many times I am thanked for keeping it going, simply because "of the people, by the people and for the people" was what I had in mind when it was founded.

Of course, I'm never going to run for President...I can't and shouldn't. But if I can make a difference, wherever I live in the country (or the world, for that matter), that's all that really counts, in my mind. It's time to be the "Carol" I am...

...because I can.

Carol Harper

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