Weekend Coffee Share

wordswag_15073188796611453091488Weekend Coffee Share is a time for us to take a break out of our lives and enjoy some time catching up with friends (old and new)!

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that one minute ago I finished my latest draft on my play. I’ll need to print it out and look for typos, but I’m essentially done and will soon start another project.

Saturday I attended a lecture at my library on the Charms of Chicago or some such thing. It was a disappointment. The speaker just listed a bunch of well known facts you could find on a Wikipedia page. No depth or new information at all. I was tempted to leave, but I would have had to crawl over people on either side of me.

I finished a good book that I strongly recommend, The Old Wives’ Tale. It’s by Arnold Bennett, a Victorian novelist and essayist. I never heard of him, but a friend suggested we read the book and discuss it online. I’m so glad I said yes to the idea.

I loved the documentary Won’t You Be My Neighbor? I’m still thinking of the power of Frank Rogers’ kindness. The film deserved at least an Oscar nomination. I’m not sure why it was overlooked.

I’m delighted that the Mueller investigation is done. It’s time to move on.

Spring is on the horizon. People are still complaining about how cold it is and it’s just in the 40ºs most days, but to me that’s still winter weather. I think part of the reason people are cold is that they’ve started to wear spring coats. It’s too early, folks.

 

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Won’t You Be My Neighbor?

Wow! I can’t think of a more sincere, thorough look at a man dedicated to making the world a better place. I can be sarcastic and skeptical, you’ve got to have a heart of stone to not be moved by this documentary about the work of Fred Rogers, the force behind the classic children’s show Mr. Rogers’s Neighborhood.

This 2018 documentary shows Fred Rogers’ life from when he started his career planning to go seminary and then go into ministry. He was about to enter ministry just as television was gaining steam. Back then children’s television was little more than mean spirited slapstick comedy. While he would have made a fine pastor, he impacted the country much more through broadcast.

Fred understood the power of television and the complexity of children. While networks saw kids as needing little more than cheap laughs, Rogers saw that the medium could do more to help children understand their emotions and the problems of the world that scare us all.

Because it was so different, Mr. Rogers Neighborhood won kids, parents and child development experts over. It’s the one show I know of that doesn’t overstimulate children.

The film features his  wife, sons, the actors in the program and others in the media explaining their experience and insights on Fred. It shows Fred interacting with kids as well as speaking before congress. Moreover, it discusses the parodies and challenges that Fred struggled with. It even shows the protestors who came to his funeral. I was surprised that anyone would protest against Mr. Rogers at his funeral in 2003.

No one has followed in his footsteps, which is a pit. We’ve got plenty of snarky humor, more sincerity would be welcome.