By Isabel T. Escoda, Cebu City
Have people lost their sense of humor these days with all the doom and gloom, not just from the pandemic, but because of what goes on in our government? Is good cheer in short supply because there’s so much to moan and groan about, like people out of work and children going hungry and unschooled, vagrants begging or peddling towels on the street, old folks abandoned under bridges (like the woman in Quezon City recently), political vendettas going on unabated, and officials claiming to help the poor while pocketing some government funds for themselves?
Seeing and reading about so much pain and suffering around us, there is indeed little to be cheery about. But perhaps one should keep in mind that now and then it’s therapeutic to try lightening the load in humanity’s heart by seeing the bright side of things.
What things exactly are bright? For one, the pandemic has resulted in many thoughtful people realizing that they need to be kinder towards others, and that they should share what they have with those less fortunate. They have discovered that they don’t need to live the same frenetic lives they did before, engaging in the quest for riches, achievement and enjoyment. They have found that they can do without the luxuries they indulged in in the past. They have opened their eyes to what’s still left of nature and tried to repair what has been despoiled by mindless humans by joining environmental organizations, and made small personal efforts to cut down on personal waste by reducing, recycling and reusing. Indeed there are lots of silver linings among the grey clouds of the calamity enveloping the world today.
There’s a saying that goes: “Leave nothing but footprints, take nothing but pictures, kill nothing but time.” Which reminds of that seeker who asked his guru, “What’s the meaning of life?” to which the guru replied “Have you tried Google?”
All of which brings to mind another saying, “Life—you’ll never get out of it alive.” A somber note on which to consider life’s tragicomedy today.