By Blaney Pridgen
All writers in Op Ed are here to inform and acknowledge issues of importance to our communities, however these writings represent the views and opinions of the authors and not necessarily of The Advertiser.
Writing these articles every week is not easy. Well, the writing part can be easy, even fun, once I get an idea and run with it. Coming up with a new, fresh idea can be difficult. Sometimes I research previous entries to make sure I am not repeating myself.
I try to avoid some areas, such as a blatantly, politically partisan editorial. Perhaps I will stray there in innuendo buried between the lines of an apolitical topic in general. That does not say I have no political opinions. I do. Heavy duty ones. Actually, some fairly well-informed ones, if I do say so myself. These days, it seems to me that another politically fueled voice only engorges the flames of our rampant divisions. If I thought my writing might liberate ten lost souls from their reactionary or radical, even conservative or liberal close-minded darkness; then, perhaps I might venture a few morsels of enlightenment for the few indeed. But I don’t believe there are ten folks out there who would change their minds about much of anything at all, so I offer benign neglect to hot politics.
Another area I avoid is religious denominationalism, which is barely disguised even when no specific denomination is claimed. Most of us know that Christianity, just to name one faith among many, has at least 31 flavors like Baskin-Robbins. To speak of God is a fearsome and problematic venture. And, frankly, very few individuals will change their minds and grow in that area, short of a fox hole or lightening strike. But, as some of you know, I tiptoe into matters spiritual if not religious from time to time. That was after all my chosen career in the shadowlands of faith and church work. I have some worthwhile reflections there, but I thoroughly know that God is God, and I am not and church history too sadly speaks for itself.
I do like folksy reflections on the human condition and a bit of humor when I can conjure it. But there are two problems for me in this area of topics and ideas. My spirituality, moral reflections, and good citizenship are prone to sentimentality. I am concerned that I too often sound like John Boy Walton telling a Jack Benny joke. Two, I am contending with the overture to elderly and all the cantankerousness that entails. Sometimes I believe I am living my sunset years in an apocalyptic, science fiction novel, and not a very well written one at that. Both of these problems constantly raid what I call good writing worth reading, which in turn raid what ideas I can manage. Now, what shall I write about next? I know! How about The Great Satans of our American Scene, political and religious, and the legions of poltroons, mountebanks, and nincompoops who deem themselves wise and powerful. And perhaps I’ll throw in a little lewd and saucy stuff and praise of lethal crossbows for gun control. No, maybe not.