I am writing most of this the day after your Presidential election, by New Zealand time, so it may reassure you to know that there is life after election day.
I watched two of the presidential candidate debates, and was lulled into a deep sleep (or coma) by the Third Debate. This was welcome at the time as the aches and pains I have had after the shoulder operation has made sleep a difficult state to achieve most nights, so I am thankful to the candidates for their assistance with this!
Like a Possum caught in the headlights of an approaching vehicle, I am fascinated by Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, they both amaze and frighten me for a number of reasons. Is it possible to judge anyone from their media image? I don't know, but it is what we do! Like it or not, most people collectively sway this way and that like a cornfield troubled by a fickle breeze, and our response is probably largely emotional. I am sure this is part of the human condition. Most people are driven by their "gut", that is why sport is so popular, and mathematics is not!
I am sorry, truly I am, but I cannot help but think of animal associations when I see The Donald in a debate. Mostly I see a very large old bull with steam rising from its back, snorting and pacing with pendulous scrotum swinging and mud squirting from under heavy hoofs. When the "locker room talk" scandal was lobbed like globs of smelly manure onto the campaign trail, the old bull image seemed most apt indeed, but sober reflection over a few days has replaced that with the bleaker image of an old bull pacing a ring taunted by a matador.
This may be a cultural or a generational thing, but I am not accustomed to people claiming to be clever even when they are. To do so at a public meeting would appear boastful or pretentious.. to have to do so may also make the person seem stupid! New Zealand has a reputation for cutting down "tall poppies", and maybe, after living here for 40 years, some of that has rubbed off on me.
At a campaign rally at Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, Donald Trump said, "I went to an Ivy League School, I am very well educated, I know words, I have the best words..." Trump said "I know words"... in the way that someone else might boast that they understand quantum mechanics or string theory!
I realise that Trump may well be a very high achiever in the world of deal making and finance (I am not, so I couldn't possibly judge!), but he just does not come across in the media as being particularly "bright" or capable of heading up the management of a country so large, complex, and with so many overseas interests and involvements as the United States of America. He would argue that he was the victim of media bias. I wonder... is there really a substantial intelligence under the snorting and bluster? There may be? I don't know!
|Screenshot taken at 9.46am NZ time from FiveThirtyEight.com|
From watching the heaving lines of the polls, I suspect that Hillary Clinton will win. There is a significant peristaltic twitch at the election day end of the lines which maybe show a last minute nervousness about Trump, and a wish to plump for someone with a greater appearance of being able to debate, listen, negotiate, and express a coherent point of view.
It may also be a case of "Better the Devil that you know", but Clinton does come with sulphurous baggage. I am a bit simple when it comes to politics and people, but something that I don't like about that "locker room talk" scandal, and it is that someone recorded that stuff, was it 8 or 10 years ago, then kept it hidden away to use for leverage, advantage, blackmail, or what ever. I don't much care for people who talk and joke in the way that Trump appears to have done, but I despise schemers and blackmailers and people who profit from them!
Much is made of the Hillary Clinton email scandal, but emails seem a bit techie and cerebral somehow. Emails are not "sexy" and attention grabbing even when there are thousands of them. In the light of the recent brief resurfacing of this scandal, I found it interesting to find on YouTube a clip that was uploaded on 7 July of this year of FBI Director James Comey being questioned by Trey Gowdy at a hearing on the FBI’s investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of private email servers while serving as Secretary of State, as well as the decision to not recommend criminal charges against her.
We are too close to see and evaluate the legacy of our our present day politicians, and how they will be judged by historians 100 or 200 years in the future, but can Hillary Clinton really be seen as a Peace Maker, when so many have died on her watch?
I really don't envy Americans having to choose between Clinton and Trump. What ever is decided may also have a profound effect on the rest of us around the world. I guess I will be checking the news every hour or so this afternoon as the results start to trickle in. I might even manage some more sleep!
Talking of Cats!
With that off my chest...., I'm ready to talk about cats! One in particular!
There was a time when the sight of a large black and white cat threading her way through a display of my pots would quicken the pulse, and generate a jolt of panic. As a younger, and much smaller, version of herself Nigella Stopit was clumsy and heavy footed. She would walk through, rather than step around bowls, jugs, or mugs. She would wear mugs like gumboots, before scattering them on their sides, or knock them onto the floor!
By some miracle, perhaps by some weird quirk in the Inverse Law of Physics, she has become more sure footed as her bulk has increased, so breakages are now rare. I still don't encourage her to climb up amongst my pots, but I can now find some humour when she does!
Nigella Stopit discovered this large footed bowl in the gallery the other day, and realised that its generous proportions would fit her own beautifully and trap the morning sun!
Oh to be a cat! In uploading these photos I realise that I have just fulfilled the blogging stereotype of a reclusive person posting photos of their cat, but... who cares!
Making Life Better!
I haven't posted for a while, because I did not want to make this blog a list of aches and pains, and medical stuff. I also have only recently had the energy or mental stamina to feel like spending much time in front of the computer doing anything creative or requiring much input from me.
It is 4 and a half weeks after my shoulder operation and I was delighted this morning to be able to carefully play my ukulele for 4 or 5 minutes for the first time since the operation. At last the range of movement of my left arm has got to the stage where I can bend my elbow up and hold the neck of the instrument and push down with my fingers on the strings. This makes me feel much better, I was really missing my daily dose of music!
The other good thing today was that I was able to use the camera to take photos of Laura in the garden.
I found using both hands to work the camera really difficult before, but managed a short session of photo taking today.
The last 4 weeks has been rather an up and down ride and I couldn't have got through it without Laura helping and encouraging. We also have had family and friends drop in, ring up, email, and help with fetching groceries from town, or taking me to the doctor for appointments, and all this has kept us going and made life much better!