Thursday, December 8, 2016
Yesterday a sixth-grade boy came up to my desk and said he was conducting a survey about freedom. He wanted to know if I would help. I said yes.
"Do you believe you're free?" he asked.
"Ummm...yeeeeaaahh..." I said hesitantly, simultaneously weighing the question and wondering where this survey might be headed.
He briefly typed something into his laptop, said "Okay, thanks," and walked away.
Definitely the shortest survey I've ever encountered. And somewhat thought-provoking!
I mean, I guess I'm as free as a person could be -- freer than millions of people around the world, for sure. But all of us are a little constrained by finances, or family obligations, or other life circumstances. Right? There's never absolute freedom. That's just disconnection -- a "heart that's full and hollow, like a cactus tree," as Joni Mitchell sang.
I wonder if there would have been other questions if I'd said no?
This is our library Christmas tree. We're being very internationally minded this year! Is it appropriate to decorate a Christmas tree with flags, including those of non-Christian nations? I'm choosing to believe it's fine. A tree is a fairly secular symbol, after all -- we don't even put a star on ours -- and we could all use some global togetherness right about now.
That flag at top left, the red and white one, is Greenland, by the way. I had to look it up!
(Top photo: A street in Soho, on Saturday.)