There's a part in the book Sophie's Choice when the main character marvels that he was preoccupied with trivialities on the same day that the character Sophie had to make her fateful (and fatal) choice. He suffers over the fact that he was leading a pretty good life while she (and millions of others) were undergoing horrible pain.
This is a fact of the human condition: every day, somewhere in the world, someone is having a wonderful day while someone else is having the worst day ever. Great pain and great joy, luxury and poverty, mourning and celebration, live side by side, as do birth and death. When I post here about literature and writing, which have enriched my life so much, I am always aware of what else is going on in the world--whether I discuss it here or not. I decided when I started this blog to focus on a topic that brings joy to me and, I hope, others. I've never met anyone who couldn't use a drop or two more of joy in life.
And I know that somewhere, every day, there is still pain in the world. This weekend, the world's ration of pain is so very high, I somehow feel compelled to explain that in discussing any other topic, as I will in the coming days, I am not unmindful of the catastrophic earthquake, fire, flooding, nuclear emergencies, and other disasters that are flaring right now. I've been grateful that technology allows us to follow the unfolding events, and to find places where we can offer help. And I've been grateful that people online are also discussing books and flowers and family and so many of the other topics that make life worth living.