Getting a bit too formal lately, for my journaling intention. You know, waiting until I have actual things to say. Pfft. That's not the way to run the idea pump! Keep those fingers moving. Drifting thoughts follow.

Here's something I'd normally keep quiet for no great reason: We just cancelled an upcoming vacation due to me having a sore throat for several days. Still not sure if it was an allergy-triggered thing or if it was possibly something viral, but have had zero other symptoms and nothing for the rest of the family either. Our isolation practices have been pretty good, so it's a little unnerving to consider. I'd gotten used to perfect health after four completely virus-free months in our household. What a difference from normal kids-catching-everything-at-school, eh? I hear Australia completely killed its normal winter flu season. Silver lining.

Was thinking about this NYT piece today:

It's hard to see how to bridge the gap (which is exacerbated by this very story) to connect with people who feel "like your freedoms kept getting taken from you". What can a pluralistic society offer to this large group of formerly-more-privileged people whose... I'll try "sense of safety", seems to be firmly tied to their ideological bubble not being disturbed? If a new community offers acceptance and belonging, but is associated with the kind of openness-to-others that can be threatening to world-wary "in the world, but not of it" folks... well, I suppose there will be those that get curious enough to try, and those that will put up more fortifications. It's hard to see how an organization attempting to route around the culture war wouldn't end up getting painted as outgroup by one or even both sides at some point.

Different topic. The best groups, communities, relationships - you look forward to spending that time. You get energized by that time. You feel more alive, more yourself, more equipped and able to face the rest of the world due to that time. That's something I've experienced, and it's something that must be at the core of any thing that people would identify as belonging to. People don't have time. They don't have the time to spend, if it's just another drain/drag on their time like the 15 other things they have to do in a week. It has to feel life-giving, to produce more than it takes, to be net-positive, receiving instead of spending. Remember that, it's a good simple rule.