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I post this video every year, and every year it manages to evoke a slightly different reaction in me. This time it was the dialogue between the President (oh to have a president like Jed Bartlet) and Toby.

Bartlet: If we start pulling strings like this you don’t think every homeless veteran is going to start coming out of the woodwork?

Toby: I can only hope, sir…*poignant stare*

Find the courage to act and help others when it is ‘wrong’ officially is a skill we should all learn and nurture in ourselves and others. Jed (and everyone watching) knows the right-wrongnesss of Toby’s actions and the shoulder pat confirms that there is right in the world, that stands outside all of the bullshit and appearances and necessary conventions.

Look for those circumstances (and give the shoulder pat of course) in the upcoming year friends, I guarantee the world will be a slightly better place because of your actions.

The holiday season seems to magnify all the emotions, it can make for some rough times during the last couple of weeks of December. Sometimes it is good to pause and reflect and what is, and what isn’t and focus on the people and ideas in one’s life that really matter. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.

One of the ideas in this clip is about being a decent human being, it’s a worthy goal to strive for, and startlingly enough, happens to be one of my personal endeavours. So, if there is a holiday wish I can share with my fair readership it would be this, I wish for you to have the courage and commitment to being a decent human being and demonstrating that capacity on daily basis. It’s a win/win situation for you and those around you.

So, yeah, be a little like Toby from the clip – if you’ve watched the show – you know he’s horribly flawed person but sometimes because of who he is, he just gets it right. I hope you all can have many ‘get it right’ moments for the holiday season and the upcoming year.

Happy Holidays, best wishes, and warm thoughts to you all this fine season. Take care, and be kind.

The Arbourist, The Intransigent One, Mystro-X, and Bleatmop.

Now a tradition here at DWR, I present the final moments from the episode of the West Wing titled ‘In Excelsis Deo’.  A powerful reminder of all the happenings of the holidays and the courage people muster during these forcefully happy times.

 

Be Well All.

Warm wishes to you and yours from all of here at DWR.

 

Sometimes a TV show captures a feeling so succinctly, so beautifully, so powerfully, that it becomes something a little more special.  Sure it is the West Wing a TV drama – but put away the cynicism for just a bit –  and follow the emotion of the moment portrayed.  You know I’m no fan of the military, but I think the message is bigger than just the surface trappings of the event.

The moment is about empathy and being willing to take the hit for helping bring to others some small bit of decency, even if it is the funeral of one of your loved ones.  The juxtaposition of the stark funeral procession and the christmas festivities just destroys me every time I watch the damn clip.   A funeral as a holiday ‘gift’ illustrating the humanity and possible decency of the human spirit….oh damn…there I go again.

Happy Holidays to you, gentle readers, from all of us here at DWR.

 

 

 

Seasons Greetings

From: The Arbourist, Mystro, The Intransigent One, and Bleatmop.

 

 

 

The West Wing, ever so often, managed to perfectly capture the crazy paradoxical nature of the human condition.  Watch and experience the juxtaposition so masterfully done in this short clip.

How can any day be a day of joy when some 20,000 children will die of preventable causes.  Oh sure, we pull it off – we ignore, we distance, we glaze over the baleful reality that would ‘ruin’ our festive spirits.  It is a supposedly happy time year, yet the rate of suicide always spikes during the holiday.  We entertain ourselves, ostensibly to be happy, but what is this happiness that is procured while fleeing headlong from the misery that defines the condition of collective humanity.  The (un)funny thing about the whole situation is that unless one takes the time to think about the paradox of the season (and life) it un-gently fades into the background; yet, the dissonance remains, like a middle C and F# played repeatedly without resolution (try it on the next keyboard that crosses your path, it is really a henky sound).

Why should one bother with those grating notes in the background, when so much is done to wash them away?  I mean, why not subscribe to the ‘life is great for me, let’s live in moment’ and all that.  We should insert the cliche examined vs. unexamined life bit here to make this sappy holiday soliloquy complete. :)

(ed. Funny, I made a typo in that last sentence instead of “let’s live” I had produced “let’s lie”… )

This, like much of my writing, is vaguely contemplative, but mostly hot air generated in one of the many cavities in my skull.  Given my predilection to rage-hate philosophical word-wanke I hope, gentle readers, that I have not strayed to far into that particular territory.

Rather; let us together find some small sliver kinship and solidarity with our tri-tone reality (that C/F# thingie), and try to reconnect with those qualities that make us good human beings – empathy, altruism and charity – for every season.

 

And yes, a Happy Holiday wish to all our readership here on DWR, and all the best in the New Year.  So sayeth the happy cat.

happy kitty

Happy Holidays Everyone.  Take care of those around you, make some more memories, and remember those who shared in your joy that have passed on.

Best wishes from everyone here at DWR.

Never forget what is important, what matters, what is real.  We here at DWR do our best to avoid the unruly scourge of the capitalist driven christmas season.  On this day we need to remember not everyone is celebrating, not everyone is sharing in good spirits, not everyone is waiting in anticipation for tomorrow the culmination of what started on Black Friday in November.

Some only wish to be warm, some want only to be safe; but some are past such mundane concerns…

I still cannot get past this segment from the West Wing without getting misty.  The actors portray such a vivid commitment to what is right as opposed to what is expedient.  I weep, yet I find hope that such actions are happening here in the real world and people do have the capacity to find their empathy, embrace their altruism and do the right thing.

Trust your empathy, embrace your altruism and find the courage to do what is right this holiday season and everyday after.

May you be safe with your family and friends this fine day…you will have to excuse me now, I have a date with my family and some perogies… :>

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