Saturday, February 20, 2016

No News Is Good News

I've always been a news junkie, and a political junkie. I grew up in a household that watched all of both political conventions, and I still do that, much to my wife's chagrin. Of course, I also grew up in a time when there were only three TV channels, and the conventions were all that was on. It reminds me of the old Jeff Foxworthy line: "The President's on every channel!!! We're gonna miss Flipper!!!!"

To me, politics, especially a Presidential campaign, is like following a sports league. There are winners and losers, people get ahead and fall behind, and make mistakes that cost them the game. And Election Night is like Super Bowl Sunday. I love the stirring John Williams fanfare when they come out of commercial. I love the strategy of politics, the minutia of how campaigns are run (mostly by volunteers), the debates, the polls, all of it. I'm actually more interested in the nuts and bolts of politics than the issues.

Don't get me wrong, I feel strongly about issues. Any of you who know me well know what my politics are. But I still appreciate a great speech, a good debate performance, and a well run campaign, no matter who is running it. Just like I appreciate how the New England Patriots are run, even if I think they're evil. (I don't, by the way.) Political pros of all stripes recognize that the Obama campaign organization is probably the greatest ever assembled. The problem for Democrats is, it probably only works for him. Stuff like that fascinates me.

But I've also always been a news junkie. In my life, whenever there's been a major news event, especially a major tragedy, I couldn't stop watching coverage of it. Whether it was Jonestown in 1978, the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995, or 9/11 in 2001, I was glued to the TV. If there was a war (and when isn't there one?), I would be all over the coverage. But now, I feel differently. I have no interest in hearing about mass shootings, or about the fight against ISIS in Syria and Iraq. I still want to hear about the latest polls in the primaries, and the latest outrageous thing Trump said, but I don't want to hear the horror stories.

I think this might be for the same reason that I had trouble getting into Halloween this year. I just feel so alive and blessed that it seems to take away the fascination with horror that I've always had, whether it's my lifelong interest in Nazi Germany, cults, and serial killers, or my love of creepy crawlies in October. All I want to think about is the love that continues to be showered upon me.

So if you wanna talk about Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton, I'm totally down with that. I actually have a very interesting theory about those two that you might want to hear at some point. After all, to me, that's sports. I'm still interested in the Broncos and Nuggets too. But for now, I choose to be blissfully ignorant of the terrible tragedies that go on every day, all around us. I choose to focus on the blessing. And the sports.

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