I’ve mentioned before that I have a long commute. I cancelled my satellite radio a few months ago in a sudden urge to cut out unnecessary spending. I’ve been doing a lot of audio books since then. When I’m listening to a good audio book, I have a tendency to get lost in the story. I’ve even been known to miss my turn.

This weekend I was looking for a new audio book for this week. Everything on my list was not available at the digital library. Since I was on a quest to cut out unnecessary spending I couldn’t justify to myself the cost of buying an audio book. So I decided that maybe this week I just needed to listen to the radio.

Listening to the radio does not require a lot of attention. Songs come on, I pay attention for a short while and then my thoughts stray to other things. Sometimes songs bring back memories and sometimes they make me think.

On my way home Merle Haggard’s “Are the good times really over” came on. Here are the lyrics and here is the video of Merle performing the song. Take a minute and read the lyrics or watch the performance and then come back.

Now when that song came on my first thought was the bombing Friday in Paris. I thought about how crummy the world has become in my lifetime. I could list a multitude of things and events, but why bother? We all know what they are.

But as I listened to an old man sing about how bad the world is, I realized it’s just a matter of perspective. Every generation thinks the world is spinning out of control. Each new generation try to make the world a better place. These thoughts, actions, and reactions have been happening since the beginning of time.

Along with the terrible things that have happened in the last 50 years there have been wonderful, marvelous things that have happened as well. Along with the things that people are still blind to, there are lots of things that people have opened their eyes to and changed.

So in a world where the next terrorist attack could  happen any where, at any time, I say that the goods times are not really over and we are not rolling downhill like a snowball headed for hill.

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