A Friday morning note on Tony Bourdain…

Yesterday, I was planning to write my remembrances of the day Bobby Kennedy was murdered.  I thought, no, I’ll wait a day until all the nice things are said, and talk about my own feelings that early, early morning sitting on the side of my bed watching TV as it happened, so many years ago.

I’ll still write it.  However, today I’m watching about someone else having left us.  Anthony Bourdain – a guy I’ve watched and followed; read about; all these years.  I admired him. I admired his honesty, his openness, and his caring about others.  To me, he had a real handle on what the world is like.  Maybe that’s why he left.

But he left behind a message.  So have others who have committed Suicide…and we damn well better listen.

There will be some who not only won’t listen, but they’ll get behind their computers, and – using their anonymous and brave keyboards – they’ll spout off about how these people should have gotten help, they had money, they this, they that.  Well, the fact is this:  if you are spewing non-sense and holier-than-thou crap from behind the anonymity of a computer screen,

You are one of those afflicted with some form of Mental Illness.

There is precious little help for anyone who is mentally disturbed/challenged/ill/hurting.  We’d rather jail them, it seems.  After all, the Prison-Industrial complex has stated clearly that in order to make a profit and stay in business, they have to have more than 90% of their beds filled, yes?  So, we certainly accommodate them.  Something stinks.

Stars like Tony Bourdain and Kate Spade and others who have left us this way get looked at either with sympathy or disdain.  Empathy appears to have left us – at least in the Western World.  It’s all I can speak to.  Severely Religious folks and some others believe that committing Suicide is a ‘Sin.’  Maybe they’ll ‘burn in hell.’ Yeah right.  Save that judgement for your Selves, please.

What I do believe is that we are all Spirits in human experience, expressing an Experience of God/Life/Universe.  You don’t need to believe that – after all, it’s my belief, not yours.  But just like our children dying all the time across the world – from Poverty, Neglect, War, and more – they are sending us a message and we are not listening.  So many claim Religion, yet turn away from the ‘hard’ problems; blame it on ‘others;’ and go to church/synagogue/mosque/wherever and thank our gods that it’s not us.

But, it is us.  The everyday person has more pressures now than ever.

Now, support systems of all and every kind are being ripped away from the fabric of a political system that used to, at least, provide some semblance of well-being to its citizens at the most basic level.  Support is being taken away from those already promised it and trying to live on it.  Mental Health assistance is virtually non-existent.  Medical care is being dismantled – even as it wasn’t the best, unless you have a lot of money, then it is.  The United States is one of the worst in the Western ‘developed’ world at caring for its citizens.

Yet, we are so completely and adeptly spun that we believe otherwise.

Tony Bourdain’s shows showed Reality.  He, more and more, addressed issues of the Everyday Person around the world, through food…culture.

I’ll miss you, Tony.  I hope we listen…

tony bourdain




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