Siege Diaries 3/21/2021

Today’s Daily Stoic writing prompt:  What if I sought peace where I am right now instead of in distant lands?

Do I have any choice right now?  There have been no distant lands to even dream of for a year or so, and so much of my time has been spent either alone or in the company of just one other person.   But that hasn’t meant that all of this time has been spent in seeing peace–although that’s something, I think, that I’ve been able to gradually improve upon over the many months. Part of it has been writing these diaries. Part of it has been in reading and listening to music. Part of it has been in embroidery.

But I have a couple of external deadlines coming up in the next week or two that I’m sort of pushing against.  I know if I get them done and out of the way, that will free me from obligation. I feel I “should” get going on them.  Right now, however, one of them is still not for a week and a half and the other for this coming weekend, and I don’t really feel the immediate push of a deadline.  And it was a gorgeous day again today, and there was that desire to get out into it and enjoy the sunshine and the simple act of walking.  And so I did, doing the first part with my husband, and the last 30 minutes with Shostakovich’s Symphony no. 6.

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Catsnail is done!  That leaves just one more small project left on the marginalia cat vest.

In other exciting news, we had another five-hour-long internet outage today.  It came back up minutes before the weekly RPG session started.  I did use the opportunity to clean the bathroom.

And I’m currently watching a panel of Indigenous people who are part of the SCA.

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There is a lot of squawk right now about intergenerational conflict–boomers vs. millennials, millennials vs. Gen Z, and those of us in Gen X looking on with a bit of amusement and resignation as we’re “forgotten” again–except perhaps by some boomers that think we’d be some kind of “ally” against millennial “cancel culture”–forgetting all of the “cancellation” that took place over many years when we were kids–everything from rock music lyrics to D&D.

My unique (or not-so-unique) perspective is that because I opted out of that generational milestone of having kids, those dividing lines between generations do not seem as significant to me.  I’m also part of a hobby group where, apart from actual children, we have always interacted with each other as fellow participants without much concern about age.  I had friends considerably older than me (only really apparent right now as they start to receive their vaccinations and I find out that they’re in their 60s and 70s) and considerably younger.  I even have friends I remember as babies.  But having a shared focus has kept us from bunching up into generational groups.  It’s also the case that in a group that’s based around learning, those of use in older generations are probably much more open to new ideas and new approaches than the population at large.  And it extends well beyond the immediate sphere of the SCA.  Seeing younger friends question their gender and sexual identities has helped me think about the assumptions I’ve always made about mine.  The same goes for questions about race and ethnic identity.

The fact that we’re interacting primarily online now has also helped break down barriers.  My husband has been online gaming for a very long time and has regularly had gaming partners in their teens.  I likewise have friends from Reddit communities who are either much younger than me or who I have no clue how old they are.  AskHistorians is a perfect example–I have no idea how old anyone there is, although teens seem to be rare on the panel simply because of the deep level of knowledge needed.  And assumptions that everyone on Reddit is young are incorrect;  in fact, it’s one of the things that makes one of the communities, the classicalmusic sub, such an interesting place–a mix of high school musicians, people just discovering classical music and those who have listened all their lives, composers of all ages, and people with years in the industry (the recent death of the problematic (and that’s an understatement) conductor James Levine has brought forward some fascinating conversations.)

The point is, I have become used to dealing with people with almost no reference to age–because the places where I intersect with them are in interests that are ageless–they’re open to everyone.  And I think that’s key to bettering understanding between people of different ages–find that point of intersection.

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