Thursday, May 31, 2012

Daily Briefing for Thursday, May 31, 2012

I Really Shouldn't Go Here.

When I spoke in chapel at Webb late last month, one young man asked me if I believed in the Zombie Apocalypse.  I'd brought the question on myself, since I'd told the audience that the biggest fear of kids their age was, in fact, zombies.  My response?  I don't believe in the ZA, but if you believe in it and as a result you're better prepared for a wider spectrum of perils, then I support your decision to prepare for it.

This week's news cycles have been filled with stories of people killing and literally eating their victim.  I ran across this story from Maryland in the Huffington Post of yet another incident of Punch and Munch (WARNING: Punch and Munch is an official trademark of the Suburban Dad Survivalist, 2012.  All rights reserved.  Use it without my permission and I will sue your ass into oblivion.  And then I will eat you.  Literally.)  It begs the question: New trend or just statistical outliers?

I'm betting on the latter.  I suspect most of these stories would not be getting the press they are getting  but for the incident in Miami which was apparently witnessed by a fair number of fine citizens residing in the 305 area code.  I lived in Miami for years.  Stories like this are rather common there.  No joke.  Ask anyone who lives there, and they will tell you the same thing. 

But there is clearly an undercurrent here I don't want us to neglect.  Look at what's going on around us.  Spain is "in a situation of total emergency, the worst crisis we have ever lived through” as reported by Ambrose Evan-Pritchard.  Jobless claims this week came in at "383,000, an increase of 10,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 373,000. The 4-week moving average was 374,500, an increase of 3,750 from the previous week's revised average of 370,750."  Tomorrow morning's May jobs number may disappoint as well

Things are uneasy out there.  People are feeling the strain of expensive gasoline and an economy that doesn't seem to want to rebound.  Political rhetoric on television and talk radio may provide an outlet by giving us someone to blame, but in reality all of this is much bigger than any one candidate or one party. 

I'm not blaming these recent stories of cannibalism on the economy or politicians.  What I'm saying is that our world is filled with all sorts of stressers at the moment.  Be cognizant of that.  Note the people you meet in public are more likely to be on edge than they were a few years ago.  You may be on edge more than you were a few years ago. 

Stay grounded.  Stay focused on what's important.  Prepare.  Know that you're doing the right thing by taking care of yourself and your family.  Show charity when you can.  Be the reason someone is less stressed than they were before.  Be the true leaders we need right now, even if it's on a small scale. 

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