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Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Another One Bites the Dust

I don't really like Queen and I think "Bohemian Rhapsody" is the most overrated song of all time.  I do enjoy "Another One Bites the Dust/We Are the Champion".  But that is neither here nor there.

We received an email from our HR regarding the death of someone I knew.  I did not know him well but it came as somewhat of a shock as I had just been commenting at lunch with a friend about how many people I had worked with in my (coming) twenty-four years with the company.  For that reason, if for no other, it was shocking.

I can't say much about him as I did not know him well and had only worked with him for a few months several years ago.  But, at least, I knew who he was.

The fact he was some years younger than I played some role as well.  Looking back on it there are an inordinate number of folk I have worked with who have passed away (read "died") who are a few to several years younger than I.

There are many (all younger than I) who have died.  I know one cannot fathom the whys and wherefores because there is no rhyme or reason for these things.  Still, it kind of amazes me how someone like I who has tried to kill himself slowly over many years is still here while so many who loved life and embraced life-lengthening treatments are now long gone.

Possibly, just an observation on the general unfairness of the universe. (Were the universe truly fair I would not transpose so many letters.  I am so tired of typing "hte" for "the" or "ot" for "to".  Age I suppose.  A lot of word processors recognize this error and auto corrects.  I guess some day us old fart will just have to strike keys at random and the software will interpret it and   construct masterpieces of literature.

I suppose it is time for bed as I can no longer follow my own train of thought.

Black and White Make Magic...

I just saw an interesting commercial tonight.  It reminded me of the simple little Cheerios commercial where the racist element of our population made such a big deal of an interracial couple with a beautiful, light brown daughter being in a commercial.

Thank you racists.

Something seems to have struck a chord with advertisers.  Since that debacle I have noticed a plethora of TV commercials with interracial couples.  The one-armed veteran in the Swiper ad, and now an interracial commercial for GEICO.

While I am not delusional enough to believe this really reflects any dramatic change in the views of the racists (no matter what their race) in this country, it is refreshing to see advertisers and companies standing up to the haters and embracing diversity.

The times they are a' changing (Thanks Bob Dylan).  People who don't embrace diversity, no matter what their race or religion, are going to be left behind with some cold, empty arms.

I'm old.  I grew up when TV was lilly white.  But, I do remember the beginnings.  Dianne Carrol in Diane.  The very first prime time TV show with a black actress in the lead.  Maybe I missed one before that but I don't think so.  Bill Cosby who demonstrated people of color have the same problems people of all colors have with life and families.

Even Sanford and Son (you want to hear some real raunch... just Google Redd Foxx) which was a remake of a British show called "Steppoe and Son" was a widely hailed success.

I am amazed on one hand how far we have come as a society when it comes to dealing with diversity.  Then I am appalled at how much of the old hatreds still thrive.  Not just in whites but in people of all skin tones.  

It is a constant we, as humans, have always found.  There is always a "they" for us to hate and feel superior to.  You want the next step in societal evolution?  It is looking beyond the past and toward the future when skin color means no more than eye or hair color does now.  The real "they" we should despise is the evil and intolerance in ourselves.  "They" can no more help who their parents are, what color their skin is, what country or religion they were born in to.

Religious, or not religious, it is on us to embrace everyone as brother/sister and live that kind of life.  Hatred suck and saying, "Haters gonna hate" does not cut it.