Friday, January 27, 2017

This "Toupee" Shall Pass: Diversion Technique #1

Today, a week after the inauguration of this country's 45th President, Donald J. Trump, I find myself anxious, pissed off, scared, and really all the negative feels. I cannot possibly stay in this mental state for four years, so I need to work on a diversion technique. More than one really, but in the short-term this is what I have come up: "This 'Toupee' Shall Pass" blog series. Every couple weeks or so, I hope to provide myself, and possibly others if you have read this far, an idea of how to take your mind off the current political landscape.

Before I explain my first idea, I want to explain the overarching concept of this series. Last weekend, my sister and I joined more than 200,000 of our closest friends in the Women's March on Denver. One of many marches that took place across the country and around the world. More on that event later; but the phrase, "This 'Toupee' Shall Pass" came from a sign that I saw at the March. The expression really struck me, I think due to a combination of my faith, as well as my love of history. After I stopped laughing at the play on words, I felt a strange sense of momentary peace. I need to believe that the framer's of the Constitution, especially perhaps my man James Madison built a system of checks and balances intended to safeguard the people from a single leader. The Executive Branch (the President) is actually the weakest branch of the three by design. I can only hope that the Legislative (Congress) Branch does their job by holding the President in check and meeting the needs of their constituency, many of which did not vote for President Trump.

Now where did my diversion idea for this week (and this whole series, really) comes from? It actually goes back to the fact that I am continuing a New Year's Resolution that I started in 2016 (and actually kept), which is to explore one new restaurant and one new activity/place per month for the whole year. Since I enjoyed it so much, I continued into 2017. The new activity for this month was to finally attend the National Western Stock Show as it is a HUGE deal here in Denver. Groupon provided cheap tickets for Thursday night's rodeo, so we decided to give it a try. After eating wildly unhealthy food: a bacon wrapped hot dog, a deep fried Twinkie (!!), and s'more flavored mini-donuts, we took our seats for the main event. After being totally confused watching cowboys compete in bareback riding and saddle bronc riding, out came a little kid riding a sheep also known as Mutton Bustin' . And then it happened again and again... as there were many little kids who had won their age specific tournament. At the end of the event they were each given a trophy that was definitely taller than most of those kids, and probably taller than me. I truly laughed so hard that I was crying. After seeing how much fun I was having, Danny told me I needed to document this on the blog. He believed that I could come up with a bunch of ideas to help me think about something else. Secretly, I think he just wanted to get me to start blogging again - be careful what you wish for, JDP!

If you find yourself frustrated, scared, etc. I highly recommend watching YouTube videos on Mutton Bustin' - just avoid the ones that talk about the bad things that can happen when you mix a kid under 55 pounds and a sheep. Nobody wants to see that - it won't help.

Until next week, let's keep our chins up, and if you feel so inclined write your representatives to share how you feel (support or dissenting opinions). Everyone is entitled to their own thoughts and feelings, but expressing those opinions in a constructive, non-judgmental manner is the only way the American Democracy can work and thrive.

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