Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Real and Unreal


I slept in a bit this morning. I wasn't up until 6:45, which may not sound very late, but for me it's more than an hour past when I usually get up. I haven't been sleeping well lately. I keep waking up and thinking about problems in the library, and about the fact that the world is so crazy, armed men walk into pizza restaurants expecting to find children being held prisoner by presidential candidates.

The library problems are minor. There's a gaggle of ninth grade boys who always sit together during break and lunch times and who lately have been giving me fits -- playing computer games with jangly noises, issuing piercing whines from their cell phones and moving around books on the shelves just to annoy me. The problem is, there are so many kids in the library at break times, spread out over such a huge area of the floor and all the tables, in a kind of amoebic, amorphous mob, that it's hard to tell where the troublemakers begin and end. So I can't just throw them out of the library, for example, because I can't tell exactly who's involved. I did catch the book-movers red-handed and reported them to their dean.

I'm sure this sounds like minor stuff, and I suppose it is, compared to schools where students are carrying weapons and beating up administrators. But it still makes me nuts. I don't want to be a cranky librarian, but I find myself falling into that role so often.

And then the pizza thing! And not just the pizza thing but all the problems it seems to embody, from the scourge of fake news to a gullible, armed populace. I mean, what kind of a world have we become? Who would seriously consider believing that Hillary Clinton is holding children hostage as sex slaves in a Washington, D.C. pizza restaurant? Isn't it ridiculously absurd on its face? It's almost like there is no reality anymore -- like we've entered the pages of our own dystopian fiction and are acting out the plot in real time.

It just makes my head spin.

(Photo: I really did see a big pink unicorn near Oxford Street, on Saturday.)

17 comments:

e said...

Exactly...

37paddington said...

I was so far in my liberal silo I hadn't even heard about the fake news Clinton child sex ring in a DC pizza parlor until last week when someone actually attacked the place with a firearm. That was the moment I realized fake news stories that I never even saw and certainly would not have believed, had given us trump.

Ms. Moon said...

Exactly what Angella said. And there is absolutely no doubt that yes, we have entered dystopian times.

Cheryl West said...

I really would like to hibernate for four years and hope the world would still be here and functional when I wake up. Trump and right wing movements scare me so much.

ellen abbott said...

and Paul Ryan says does anyone really care if Trump lies. it's Bizarro World for sure. astounding that people believe the most insane stuff. so yeah, it does matter when he lies and a company's stock tanks.

The Bug said...

The pizza story is just insane. AND it makes me want to eat pizza (On the other hand, it's one of my favorite foods, so that might just be a coincidence).

I would so totally be a cranky librarian. It's a good thing I didn't choose that route. They'd have to stick me in the back somewhere so that I didn't interact with patrons.

Sharon Anck said...

OMG, I had not heard that pizza shop story before. That is pretty darn scary. I can't even imagine that there are people who believe something as far-fetched as that story and who are willing to take up arms against people without any proof at all. No wonder you couldn't sleep.

Allison said...

I read a piece somewhere on pizzagate, and the author actually brought up the Illuminati and the New World Order. Did you ever think you'd hear about them except in a novel? Trump's minions are on record as saying facts no longer exist, it's what people believe. Until mainstream media starts reporting daily about what most recent false thing Trump said, this will only get worse. They're not calling him on this bullshit and they need to.

Lesley UK said...

I'm seriously beginning to believe that we are living in a Matrix , because if this reality then the gods and goddesses help us all. And if this the Matrix then what the fuck has gone wrong?

Yorkshire Pudding said...

The fellow in the street wearing sunglasses - he looks riled as if he is just about to duff up the cameraman. "Oi! What do you think you're doing taking pictures of people in the street? Are you a weirdo?" ("BIFF", "BOSH!", "KERRPLUNK!")

Five minutes later..."WAA! WAA! WAA!" (Ambulance approaching) "WAA! WAA! WAA!" (Floridian librarian moaning)

Linda Sue said...

Just another day in the USA

Red said...

I've been there with your library problem. they take advantage of the group for cover. It gets worse. I still have teacher dreams after being retird for 19 years!

jenny_o said...

My mom taught Grade 9 for many years; she liked it and got along well with the kids, but it was well known among the teachers as a difficult age group. I have no advice except to have your wits about you, as that seemed to be her best tool ...

As for the lies in social media, I read somewhere last spring that if you repeat a lie often enough, people will believe it. Since then, I've seen it happen over and over. What ever happened to people thinking for themselves? No, it's more important to run one's mouth than to open one's ears ...

Oh, my, I think I've caught whatever you have ...

Alphie Soup said...

This line of thought has spread around the globe faster than any swine or avian flu virus and infected people everywhere. Down with the 'elite' experts, what would they know about anything? Say what you like, the more outlandish and unbelievable the better. What are these people on?

Alphie

Steve Reed said...

37P: I hadn't heard about it until a week or two ago. I don't remember where I first saw the story, but it was before the dude showed up with the gun. Still, yes, it's scary to think this stuff is churning away in the dark corners of the Interwebs and we have no idea!

Bug: One of my coworkers sits in the back for exactly that reason!

Sharon: I KNOW! It's insane!

Allison: It's like George W. Bush, dismissing the "reality-based community." This idea that there are no facts is perplexing to me. I guess I didn't study enough philosophy to fully comprehend that one. I think the mainstream media DOES challenge Trump and his false assertions -- there were a lot of stories about his tweet that millions of illegals voted, for example, pointing out that he had no evidence and the claim was baseless. But his minions (I love that word) just dismiss the MSM as biased and "lamestream" and go on in their bubble of disbelief.

Lesley: It IS like the Matrix!!

YP: On the contrary, I just smiled at them after I took the picture, and they walked right past me. We didn't exchange a word.

Red: I'm glad you understand what I'm talking about. It's super frustrating!

Jenny O: I don't dislike the kids -- in fact I think you HAVE to like them or you're in for a world of pain. My technique is to try to be friendly and yet stern. This seems to bring mixed results. Ha!

Alphie: Remember when we used to look to experts for advice and guidance? I mean, they are, after all, experts!

Shooting Parrots said...

That link to the Comet pizza story is just bizarre. What on earth is the world coming to when people refuse to believe scientists but are happy to swallow any sort of crap that a shock-jock throws at them?

Limner said...

I shake my head so vigorously over everyday events that the world looks as weird as it sounds. I shake it faster over the odd things children do.

I don't know what to believe any more when it comes to news. People who care enough to try to make sense of the world give me reason to believe there's hope. Surely there are more "good" people than there not-so-good people. They're just biding their time.

Don't give up.