A Year of Plays

Let’s face it.  If you live in New York, chances are you’ve got a bit tough skin.  It’s a necessity.  The inhuman speed of the place.  Strangers shoving past on the subway platform.  New York Post headlines blaring out from every street corner.  Billboards as far as the eye can see.  The hubbub, the pretension.   The grit, the grime, the grift.  We’ve seen it all, here in this fair metropolis.  We have every reason to be jaded.

Add to that reasons why any American might be jaded.  The economy going south for two years and just now creeping back up.   Joblessness.  Lack of health insurance.  The endless messing about in Washington and the vulgarity of the media that covers it.  Horrifying acts of violence perpetrated on innocent bystanders.

And if all that isn’t bad enough, we’re smart and informed.  We know that even if things get to feeling pretty okay here, they are far from okay somewhere else.  Say in Afghanistan, or Burma, or Taiji, Japan where they’re still slaughtering all those dolphins.  Have I ruined your day yet?

My point is there are very real reasons why cynicism often reigns supreme, in New York and elsewhere.  With everything going on, some days it feels trivial or even downright irresponsible to take an optimistic point of view.  But the truth is that optimism is good for the soul.   Embracing optimism is what allows the human spirit to soar.  Yet how can you do it when the world is what it is? [click to continue]