Sunday, September 16, 2018

Day 3188

I listened to a program about Schadenfreude on the way to the gym this morning. I'm sure most of you are familiar with the concept of feeling pleasure at someone else's misfortune. Apparently, researchers have discovered that in today's increasingly polarized world, people will tend to accept something they know is wrong if they think the wrong might make someone they dislike look even worse. This explains a lot. Politics and a lot of foreign policy decisions depend on Schadenfreude.

Democrats and Republicans. Palestinians and Israelis. The Patriots and the Falcons. Is it all just the same? People pick their team and stick with them no matter what. If you're a Falcons fan, you're going to be happy at Tom Brady's misfortune whenever he gets sacked. If a rough tackle puts him out of the game, you're even happier. Politics and diplomacy are starting to seem a lot like football. I like football, but is this any way to run the world?

I like to solve the world's problems while I'm on the treadmill. I never tell anybody my solutions because they'd never listen. Global warming? Piece of cake. Just stop having babies until the earth's population declines by about 40%. Cities would become smaller. Fish would return to the ocean. Forests would flourish. Could anyone convince the entire world that two children is plenty and maybe none would be even better for a while until we got things back in balance? I doubt it. Russian meddling? Big deal. Just open the files and show everyone that our own CIA has been doing the same thing for most of the Twentieth Century. We've done more meddling over the years than all the other countries combined. Countries shouldn't meddle in other countries business, but they do. People shouldn't take pleasure in someone else's misfortune, but they do. Basically, we were the meanest monkeys in the monkey kingdom. Otherwise, dolphins would probably rule the earth.

I only philosophize at the gym. Most of the time I realize that Dash is right. It's better to think about nothing. I'm fairly comfortable living like a dog. I eat. I sleep. I observe and occasionally photograph things in nature. People say it it is important to be passionate about something but I don't even know what that means. Dogs can be obsessive, but I don't think they are passionate. Passion often leads to anger. Obsession just leads to collections. Our first Dalmatian collected tennis balls. He would find them on walks and carry them in his mouth until we got home. He was obsessed with tennis balls and by the end of his life had collected hundreds of them. It all made sense to me. During the same period of time I was collecting model trains.

I've already started seeing pumpkins and Christmas Trees. The Hallmark Channel is already advertising that they are ready to debut 34 all new Christmas Movies. Where has this year gone? It's almost over already. I guess I'd better make reservations for Thanksgiving Dinner before it's too late.

Dalmatian of the Day
Watch of the Day