“Rage is all the Rage…” In this recent Time magazine article, Joel Stein nailed it when he referred to “the Bernie Sanders/Donald Trump/cable-news-channel fury of our times.” He put a label on something that’s been eating at me for a long time. Oddly, I feel better just having a name to attach to a trend that makes me squirm. Anger in any form has always made me uncomfortable, and I’ve secretly been blaming my parents for shielding me from all “unpleasantness”. Dear Mom and Dad, I know you do it because you love me, but I need to see the real world since I have to leave this cocoon some day. 
Developing and maintaining optimism — which I really want to do — depends on surrounding yourself as much as possible with positives.  Nurturing this viewpoint is rather like swimming upstream lately, but turning the TV off more often has been my good start. Now all I have to do is fill that space with more things that are uplifting. I want to keep up with the world and have tried to be a good citizen lately by watching the political debates. But it’s hard to take these serious discussions seriously when commentators purposely bait candidates to argue. Just another confrontational reality show. 
It makes sense that if you’re exposed to something little by little, it’s so gradual you don’t realize that your perspective is changing. And we’ve all been more exposed to increasing violence at one level or another — from blowing a head off in a blockbuster movie to yelling into someone’s face. I’m pretty sure the profusion of complaining, blaming, yelling, and in-your-face-brutality has made me more cynical than ever… and yesterday was proof.   
I sat down to blog about how anger makes me feel, but by pg. 4 my soap box was showing. The rambling was painful. On and on it went about what society was “forcing” on me, each page angrier than the last. How funny, I’m angry at the anger and I don’t even like anger. With my readers in mind, two pages are toast. 
I take heart in remembering how parents in the 50’s were wringing their hands in much the same way over the influence that Elvis’ gyrating hips might have on their precious darlings. Ha.