The Return of Tom Nardone
There was a time when I could tell you every single name of every senator for every state and a lot of the representatives too. This was about a ten year period of time that started shortly after I got out of the Navy. I was “plugged in”. I never missed the Rush Limbaugh show, and I loved discussing the country’s future, and what I thought should happen to fix it. There was a time.
A while back I began thinking about all the reading, listening, and watching I had been doing. I also thought about all the talking I had been doing, and the discussions I was having. That is when everything changed. I had been on this “campaign” for ten years. I was trying to educate people about this stuff, I guess because i believed it would make a difference. Then I asked myself; “How has what I have been doing affected my life?” The answer is that it made me hate, just hate, hate, and more hate.
I realized that almost everything I had been seeing on the news made me angry. What made it worse is that I just couldn’t wait to find someone to talk to about it with me. I was getting into all these discussions with people that really seemed to have no beginning and certainly, no end, or any resolution. All they accomplished was a bunch of negative, pointless, and heated conversations. I did these things every day, and in the end, nothing changed.
They made me worry. I was worried about wars, disease, food, and the financial state of the world. Hearing every day about an outbreak of some rare virus, the Dow Jones average lost a thousand points, or some country just did a successful test of a nuclear weapon. What I realized is that all of this had only one thing in common. I can’t do anything about them. I worried about all these things, and in the end, nothing changed.
They made me no fun to be around. It was all I ever thought about, and it was all I ever talked about. I did have conversations about other things of course, but sooner or later it was going to happen. The conversation would go to the issues. There I would be on my soap box right there with everyone else putting my two cents in. it would go on, and on, and on, and of course in the end, nothing changed.
So overnight I decided to just to shut it all down. I stopped watching the news. I quit having political debates of any kind. I stopped listening to talk radio. I completely avoided contact with anyone who I frequently debated with. I stopped caring who our next president would be. I put barriers up on any and all roads that lead to the discussion of our country’s problems or the world’s issues. I did all of these things, and in the end EVERYTHING changed.
I remembered something that I know I will never again forget. I remembered something that means a lot of things to a lot of people. I remembered that I am Tom Nardone, and being Tom Nardone is freaking awesome. I was able to relax. I found that my sense of humor had returned (it was only then that I was aware of its absence.) I found that there were a lot more important things to talk about that did not anger me. I found that life was just easier to stomach, if I did not focus on everything that is wrong with the world. Now my only concerns are family, work, rock shows, and Xbox. These are things that I can affect. These are things that I can improve. These things warrant discussion and I enjoy discussing them. (Well work, not so much). The earth could be out of its orbit, on a crash course with tatooine, but if it weren’t for my family or friends I would never know it.
Oh but I can already hear at least one of you. I know you can’t wait to send me the comment that will read something like this: “The surest way evil can win is if good men do nothing”. So let me just reply to you in advance by saying this; “I was a good man for ten years who did something. Now I am a good man who does nothing. “Evil” was winning then and “Evil” is winning now. As long as “Evil” is going to win anyway I will just be happy in spite of it. Caring is not fun. Being Tom Nardone is. If it makes you feel better I’ll say this “Evil and the world’s problems can all just kiss my ass.” I think that my saying that will have an effect that is equal to all the years I spent caring, and you should see the smile on my face.