Please forgive me my lamentations for I am old and I have been sidelined by a muscle injury:) (No worries...I will recover) This restriction to my
home and the limited focus I have due to medications has lead me to daytime TV and all the disfunction of our society rolled into “Divorce Court” or Judge Judy style shows that seem endless in the circus they call television entertainment. I watch in amazement
while families throw out all their dirty laundry with not one thought of what that means for their families and future generations. Only the occasional & blissful nap seems to offer refuge from the insanity that is American TV.
These awful truths, aired to any and all, lead me to believe I was raised in a privileged home. No....NOT the kind of privilege that comes from Ipads
and designer duds. I was privileged to have a family who cared about how we acted. They taught us an unlimited amount of manners. I can still hear my Grandma Maggie May advise us that kindness and manners cost nothing. It was therefore expected that we give
both freely. As I watch the uncivil and embarrassing behavior of the folks sharing their ugliness on national television, Maggie's lessons take on a whole new meaning. I wonder that without a “Grandma Maggie” and a mom and dad in their lives who taught them
how to behave.....are they gainfully employed? Are they able to coexist in a workplace where a certain amount of decorum is demanded? Or is the pay so much better for acting so shameful?
Our life lessons were mostly taught at the kitchen table. (We never had a formal dining room in our lives) There were expectations of respect and civility
that would put our new American icons on television to shame. The kitchen table was a place of peace though I do recall some silent resistance to some exotic vegetables ( like broccoli) more than once. In spite of the occasional vegi boycott there was always
the expectation of peaceful discourse. My spousal unit and I were raised with those same values, consequently this is a practice we have maintained throughout our long marriage. So as I watch this “social” insanity, I wonder what happened at the tables of
those who so freely share anger and hatred and poor manners, as if they are proudly displaying a badge.
Don't get me wrong.....like everyone else we were not the Leave it To Beaver family, but my parents knew they could have taken us to the Cleaver's
and not be embarrassed by any poor manners or lack of respect. They also knew that as we gathered the in-laws and the outlaws on the holidays from far and wide there would not be scene from Jerry Springer unfolding EVER. After the big family meals we would
make fun of an uncle stirring up the kids with teasing and my “crazy” aunt and her crooked lipstick, but we never shared those things outside of the cocoon of our family and certainly not in any public forum where we could hurt someone important in our lives.
As I watch clips of a seemingly affluent and privileged “lady” turn over a table while dining with friends and family I wonder how many tables were
tossed and by which family member as she grew up to be an “adult”. I wonder too how her children will act when frustrated by life. I do know that this person is no one I would like to break bread with...cuz she might also break my furniture and disturb the
peace in our sanctuary called home. Sadly, she is making money from this horrible behavior and probably constantly being asked for autographs from her millions of admiring fans.
My husband has been a public school teacher for 30+ years and he wonders openly too. Why does he have to teach 13 year olds' to say please and thank
you? Why are so many children coming to school so dirty that it can water your eyes to be near them? He wonders why so many children have not been taught some self reliance, responsibility and respect for others as they figure out their place in society.
He is still constantly astounded at the sharing of all kinds of horrible or embarrassing personal information openly by many of his charges. Is there no one at home who takes the time to teach basic manners? Is it the Jerry Springer duelers who sent a child
to school who constantly acts out himself? Do these children sit at a table with their family and share a common meal with the very people who are “responsible” for teaching them the basics such as hand washing? Where are the adults who should be teaching
table manners that do not include open displays of chewed food and all manner of gaseous dysfunction? Oops....I think I just saw their parents beating up another “adult” on TV with reckless abandon and pride.
I know I am going to sound like some cranky old curmugeon, but this injury and the resulting exposure to unfocused and ugly daily television can make
one feel that way. I know that not all folks act so disgracefully. I know that there are mostly sweet and respectful and well mannered children. I know from my encounters here on AllRecipes, that most of the folks who drop in to the virtual kitchen are not
the kind of folks who I would need to worry about tossing my dining table like it's an Olympic event. I know that so many here share the same goodness that was taught in my home. I have had the pleasure of meeting so many of the AllRecipeeps in person with
nary a tossed table or forced belch between us. Their kindness and helpfulness astounds me in a world that sometimes seems to have lost those life lessons.
I will now step carefully off my soap box. (ouch) I will soon return to the business of every day living without the distraction of freak TV. I will
glory in the goodness and love of all the good that comes into my life daily and continue to spread that love liberally. I thank you for all the decency and goodness you spread in our world. Now carry on :)